Saturday, 25 April 2015

31: Friday 24th April 2015

From the Director 

I have not been in school for the last couple of days because I have been invited to attend a conference of british style international schools in Latin America. It has been very interesting and confirms to me that as a community we are working in the right areas to further develop our school. I look forward to being back at home next week. Please check the ABC Newsblog for details of the ISTE Award to our ICT team. School is closed next Friday for Mayday.

Primary News

Dear Parents and Carers,

This week our classes have been looking once more at what we can do to help the planet in our Earth Week. Thank you to those of you who supported our litter and rubbish focus and helped your children to learn to dispose of rubbish responsibly. Each class has carried out activities relating to Earth Week and the students of 2nd Mena performed an assembly they had written themselves with an Earth week focus.

4th Garcia-Preto performed our last class assembly for Upper Primary on Wednesday with a very entertaining performance linked to their unit on Myths and Legends. They even managed to involve a few teachers!

Grade 2 have supported Earth week and our new value of team player and leader by dressing as bees today. They all look fabulous in their yellow, black and stripey outfits.

Our two day trips were very successful and valuable learning experiences for our students. Grade 1 went to Fusera to support their unit on Animals and plants. They were amazed by the size of the hippo’s mouths and Grade 4 had possibly a once in a lifetime, never to be repeated, opportunity to visit the Cerrón Grande Dam in connection with their unit on water. 

Due to it being the bank holiday weekend we have changed the date of the introductory trip meeting to Wednesday 29th April so that people who are going away will be able to attend. This is for the parents of students who will be in grades 4 and 5 next year. Please send back the slip from the letter we sent out to let us know you are coming. We apologise for any inconvenience this change of date may cause.

Friday May the 1st is a public holiday and the school will be closed.

Lower Primary talent show auditions will be from 4th to the 8th May as part of the timetabled music lessons. 

Enjoy the weekend and have a lovely week.

Best wishes,

Sharon Short

Dates for your diary

Lower Primary
Wednesday 29th April Foundation Stage Puppet Show in the PAC
Friday May 1st Public Holiday - School is closed
Friday 15th May IPC entry point Pushes and Pulls

Upper Primary
Thursday 30th April 6.00 pm in the PAC grade 3 and 4 ‘Trips’ Meeting
Friday May 1st Public Holiday - School is closed
Friday 15th May IPC entry point Pushes and Pulls

Secondary News

Video Games
I recently came across an article describing how some UK schools have reported parents to the authorities when they found out that parents had allowed their children to play adult games.

I think this is a step too far, but it does highlight the increasing concern about young people having access to video games, films etc. that have been classified as inappropriate for them given their age. 

The reasons why parents allow their children access to age-inappropriate video games, and other materials, is likely to be result of the following situations: either parents are technophobic and/or do not understand the dangers/issues; parents are aware of the issues yet choose to let their children have access to such material; or parents are ‘worn down’ by constant nagging by the child and they reluctantly, despite their better judgement, agree to let them have access to age-inappropriate material.

Parenting is about being involved with your children and part of this is being aware of what your children are doing. Whether it is going to the movies, watching TV, or playing video games. Choosing age-appropriate, safe material for your children is an extremely important step in preventing your children being exposed to strong, graphic violence and mature themes before they have the maturity to deal with such topics. 

The ‘aboutparenting’ website offers the following guidance to parents on setting effective limits on the video games that they allow their children to play:
  • Know what safety ratings mean for video games.
  • Identify the safety rating that has been assigned to a game before it is purchased
  • Research the game’s title - however be aware that some games are given different ratings for different game systems.
  • Teach your child/ren to evaluate video games - talk to your child/ren about what types of images and behaviours you don't want them to be exposed to through video games. Do note that the ratings provided are only a guide on what may or may not be suitable for a person given their age.
  • Be consistent.
  • Be clear with your expectations and share your expectations with anyone who might be purchasing video games for your child/ren as gifts. 
  • Trust in your child/ren - once you've made your expectations clear and taught your child/ren how to evaluate games for themselves, have faith in them.

Student Voice
Last week I congratulated Andres Butter on being elected the new Student Council President and Andrea Atanacio on being elected the new Student Council Vice-President and in doing so I mentioned that I wanted to explain what Student Voice is and why we at the ABC think it is so important.

Student Voice is about schools recognising the value of student input in what happens in the school. Students clearly have a unique perspective on their education, this insight warrants our attention and they should be given the opportunity to be active contributors to their own learning and to shape their education. That said, the best argument for giving students a clear voice is that it simply feels the right thing to do.

We are committed to continue to work closely with the Student Council. Hereafter, twice every term representatives of the Student Council are to meet with members of the Secondary School Leadership Team. This regular forum will provide a clear avenue for students to share their views and to influence the future direction of the school. 

University Information Evening

Warm regards,

Stephen Spicer
Head of Secondary School

Secondary dates for your diary
Saturday 25th April to Sunday 26th April: International Award expedition (Bronze - final)
Tuesday 28th April: start of the Grade 10 (external) IGCSE examinations
Thursday 30th April: Last school day for Grade 12 students 
Friday 1st May: Grade 10 and 12 study leave begins
Friday 1st May: Public holiday
Monday 4th May: start of the Grade 12 (external) IB examinations
Tuesday 5th May: University Information Evening (this is for Grade 11 students and their parents - see advert above)
Saturday 16th May to Monday 18th May: International Award expedition (Silver)
Thursday 21st of May: start of the Grade 9 (internal) examinations

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