Dear Secondary Families,
Welcome to our second edition of the ISC Newsletter. You will find useful articles in this newsletter about our upcoming Learner Profile week, happening next week, and our upcoming planning afternoons. We will also celebrate with you our recent Bonding trips and a snapshot of some of our lunchtime clubs. There are also important reminders about punctuality and uniform.
To assist you in identifying upcoming events quickly than in our last newsletter, please visit our dates link here.
Happening this week
Learner Profile Week: beginning 23 September
We are very excited to launch our first themed week of the new academic year based on the IB Learner Profile.
What is the Learner Profile?
The International Baccalaureate® (IB) learner profile describes a broad range of characteristics that they wish to see in an IB community – they are not based on academic success but rather on developing one’s self. All members of the school community are asked to develop respect for themselves, others and the world around them. The 10 learner profile attributes guide our community towards International Mindedness and help us to be the best that we can be.
What are the 10 attributes?
Our Learner Profile attributes are an important set of values to us in school and during our focus week, students will explore all 10 attributes within lessons, homeroom time and lunchtime clubs. Our Student of the Month awards for September will also recognise students showing outstanding development of these attributes in each Homeroom.
Finally, on Friday 27 September, please encourage your child to come dressed to represent one of the Learner Profile attributes. We are joining our Primary students in celebrating the end of Learner Profile week in this way so we will need to be creative! Is there a way to dress up as caring, knowledgeable, or to dress in a colour that represents open-minded?
Sports Bonding Day: Tuesday, 24 September
On Tuesday, September 24, our Grade 7, 8 and 9 students will have the amazing opportunity to participate in a PE activity working alongside PYP students. This is a wonderful opportunity to learn from others, to build leadership skills and to collaborate through physical activity. If your child does not usually have PE on a Tuesday, please remind them to remember their Sports kit on this day!
Family Fun Run: Saturday, 28 September
Continuing on the sports theme, ISC will host a Family Fun Run, organized by our PTA, on Saturday 28 September at 09:30. More details on how to sign up to the event will follow and the event is open to ISC students and their families and staff.
Important information for families
To support our families in planning for our events, we have uploaded to our ISC Parents Page in ManageBac a copy of our Parent workshop calendar and our full events calendar for our Winter Term. This will be followed later this month with our full events calendar for the Spring and Summer Term. You will find also a copy of our Welcome Booklet.
Please visit the ISC Parents Page in ManageBac –> Files
> Whole School Documents > ISC Calendar and Events
Homework Timetables: Grades 7, 8 and 9
Homework is an important part of our students life and gives students the opportunity to consolidate what they are learning in different subject areas. It develops a range of approaches to learning in students which are important life skills.
Grade 7-9 students have a homework timetable to ensure that students are not overloaded with work. It’s aim is to help students to be organised and balanced. If homework is assigned it will be given on the days allocated on the timetable. Not all subjects will give homework every week and deadlines will vary depending on the homework as some homework may last for more than one week.
Students and parents are recommended to keep checking managebac daily for homework explanations and new deadlines. If it’s an assessed homework the grades will be available within a maximum of two weeks on managebac. Please contact the subject teacher directly for clarification on homework assignments.
To support students further homework should have either a time limit or word limit. This will stop students working too hard for hours on a task that should only take thirty or so minutes, or writing many pages for a 200 word task.
Homework will not be set over the holidays unless it’s Grade 11 for personal project or diploma students. On average Grades 7-9 will receive 40-45 minutes of homework per subject per week. This may differ depending on the subject, they unit or the type of homework. Italian strand students will rotate homework between teachers international and Italian.
Teachers collaborate in departments to make sure Italian strand students are not receiving double homework from the same subject area. Teachers set a rota in their departments to avoid problems. Teachers also collaborate by accessing the shared managebac class calendar to carefully select when work is set and they can see when other teachers have set assessments or deadlines.
Managebac has been streamlined and it is easier to understand what is actually homework and what is only classwork. This will also help parents to supervise their child’s homework. Homework is shown as green on the managebac calendar and will say homework in the title.
Managebac tasks will be set up as follows: Example: JR Design: Homework Grade 7 (TeacherInitials Subject: TaskCategory Grade).
If students cannot access Managebac or use a computer then in their homeroom class their is a homework noticeboard. It helps support students and teachers with a weekly overview.
Uniform and Lateness
In our Grades 7-9, we have a uniform code to help add to our students’ sense of belonging to our school community and to encourage our students to develop a sense of pride in our school. For some of our families, we do appreciate that uniform orders may not yet have arrived. In this case, please respect our school colours with a plain white T-shirt and navy bottoms. We also ask that you make your child’s Homeroom tutor aware.
In addition, our PE code of conduct has specific references to help to keep your child safe, in all grades within the Secondary School. Please ensure that your child in brings their correct PE Kit to lessons in order to fully participate.
With regard to jewellery, our PE code of conduct states that no jewellery may be worn for PE or sport. As such, students are required to remove jewellery before a lesson commences. This is for the safety of your child and those around them. For students who wear knotted bracelets and necklaces that would need scissors to remove, a letter will be sent home to kindly ask to remove the piece of jewellery as these too put safety at risk when playing sport.
Clubs & Sport
Our first full week of clubs is now drawing to a close and a great time has been had by our students. We have been learning about our Model United Nations club, using our empathy skills when discussing current gender equality and being creative with our Creative Team and Drama club. For other students, it was a quiet time to work independently, to reflect on their study skills or to read and enjoy our library space. This is only a snapshot of clubs with so many exciting opportunities taking place through each and every week. Look out for featured clubs appearing in upcoming newsletters!
Drama Workshops in MYP: September 30 and October 1
We are delighted to welcome back to school Philip Kingscott on September 30 and October 1. Philip is an actor who trained at the Edinburgh school of Acting and he can be found working in Theatre, TV and Film, when he is not running student workshops. He is returning to work with our Grade 7 – 9 students on 30 September and will be looking at techniques connected to the learner profile attributes of risk taking and caring, thinking and being open-minded through improvisation for ‘Devised drama – a foundation for consensus and collaborative creativity’ and ‘Stage fighting – making action safe’
Our High School students will work with Philip on October 1 with ‘Shakespeare in performance- investigation and practice into language, space, audience and action in Elizabethan performing conditions’, focussing on the Learner profile attributes of thinker, risk taker, knowledgeable.
The techniques learnt by our students will be seen in our Middle School Drama Night on Thursday, 5 March. If you cannot wait until then to see our students in action, please join us for our High School Drama Night, taking place on November 27. The event will showcase the work of Grade 10 and 11 students. Further details about the events will follow closer to the time.
Preparing for High School and the IB Diploma Programme
Our students will become adults who engage in a world vastly different to what we know today. They will need to solve problems beyond our current understanding, use skill sets yet to be defined and use tools yet to be created. How do we prepare a child for that?
21 Foundation: 21st Century Learning for 21St Century Learners
This is a quote that continues to have a profound effect on me in my thinking, reflecting and evaluation of the opportunities we provide to our students as they enter into the final years of their education, and into our High School.
Few Grade 10 and 11 students know exactly what they want to do when they leave school, and the career aspirations that they now have may well change over the next few years. According to the Wall Street Journal, people may change career paths between five and seven times in their working career so it is important that students make choices now that will keep open as many career paths as possible.
For us here at ISC, we are dedicated to opening doors and creating opportunities for all of our students. We are looking to educate the world’s future leaders who will be driven by their values and ethics and will make a global impact. This is why we offer the IB MYP programme and why we have introduced our IB Diploma Programme.
To support our families in the transition from MYP through to life in University and beyond we offer:
- Introductory events to our High School (10 October at 18:00, repeated 13 February) and to the IB Diploma Programme (17 October at 18:00)
- Homeroom opportunities with students in Grades 9 upwards, in preparing for the future, through the year
- Individualized family support meetings in Grade 11
- Opportunities for students to speak with Universities, both in school and at University Fairs.
To introduce families to the IB Diploma Programme, we will be hosting an introductory event for our High School families, and any other families who may be interested, on Thursday, 17 October. This will be followed by the opportunity for individual families in Grade 11 to join us in individual family support meetings in November/December, with further follow-up meetings in March/April and June.
Our High School students will also continue conversations here in School regarding their future aspirations and ambitions, considering the important skills that organizations are keen to see in their future employees, and how subject choice in High School fits into the decision making process.
A collaborative culture is at the core of an IB World School. It’s not just about students working together, fostering a community of experience and learning, but also includes teachers and staff. Our staff meet together on a weekly basis to plan collaboratively within subject teams, homeroom teams and as a wider team of staff. In support of this, and to enable us to engage in deeper conversations over an extended time, we hold a series of five planning afternoons throughout the School year: 18 October, 29 November, 24 January, 6 March and 24 April. On each of these dates, our students will end School at 13:00 with our staff remaining for an extended collaborative planning afternoon.
SECONDARY BONDING FUN DAY
G7 – G9 Dragon Boat Racing / G10 – G11 Sailing / G12 – G13 Cooking Class
Ms Karen and myself wish you a wonderful weekend. Please do not hesitate to contact us if we can be of any assistance.
N. Pearce & K. Lockett