Friday, 16 October 2015

9: Friday 16th October 2015

From the Director 

I would like to remind all parents to check details in each section for the Early Closure Day next Monday (19th October).

I am going to be out of school next week as part of a CIS Team visiting a school in Bogota. I will of course be in regular contact with school at all times and Stephen Spicer and Sharon Short will be here as usual. I want to remind you that the school needs your support on Saturday 24th October with the save the Children sponsored Race for Survival which is taking place at school. The focus of the event is to raise awareness of how we can help reduce infant mortality in our country. We would like a huge response from our community to show the ABC Cares about this issue. I know many students have bought the campaign T-shirt and we hope they will all come along with you, their parents, and support the event on Saturday from 8.30 am in the morning. Even if students have not bought a T-shirt we would still like you to come with them to join in the event. There will be many fun activities and relay races they can participate in and watch. If you can join us for the morning there will be parking at school but you will need a car pass to enter and we will be providing details on getting the car pass at the start of next week

As part of the Race for Survival there will be two traditional races of 2.8 km in length one for Secondary students and one for parents to participate in with medals! We hope you will encourage your son or daughter to participate in the student race if they like running and we hope many parents and staff will in the adult race! If you would like to register your interest in the adult race please e-mail Estefania Chacon at school. 

I would also like to remind you of the forthcoming Breast Cancer Awareness talk on Tuesday evening in the PAC which the whole ABC community is invited to attend. We will be addressing issues related to more traditional male cancers next month!

Thank you to the parents who attended the Coffee Morning with Licenciada Ana Maria de Portillo and myself on Wednesday morning. It was a very enjoyable event and an opportunity to share some ideas and opinions. All the issues raised will be discussed and feedback provided. I would like to remind parents that the school will never discuss an individual student in a negative manner in front of other parents without the express permission of the parents. I would like to remind parents that they should also not do so. The school is clear about its responsibilities to protect young people and minors in many ways and we expect our parent community to respect these laws.

Primary News

Dear Parents and Carers,

On the 19th October please remember we have our first early closure day for staff to plan the curriculum. Please note the following details.

11.25: Grades 7-12 depart (with Primary siblings - older students will go to the Primary classrooms to collect their brothers and sisters)

11.45: Grade 1-5 depart with siblings (Upper Primary students will collect their younger siblings from the classroom and take them to the car park for collection)

12.15: Pre-Kinder - normal collection arrangements apply for those children without siblings

12.45: Kinder - normal collection arrangements apply for those children without siblings

12.45: Prepa - leaving 30 minutes earlier than normal, unless they have older siblings

It will be very helpful if the oldest students in your household know exactly which car park they will be collected from so please discuss this in detail at home.

The Save the Children Primary activity was very successful last Friday. Lots of students wore their own clothes, received a ring pop and raised $842 towards our cause, which is supporting premature babies with hearing loss. Of course there is still a long way to go to reach our goal of $5,800 to buy the hearing machine and we are hoping for a very good turnout on Saturday 24th October for the Race for Survival. It will start at 8.30 and continue until 12.30. There will be lots of fun activities even if you are not running yourself. So please come along for a great family morning. Take a look at the presentation prepared by our grade 5 students here;

Please note that in our continuing efforts to raise the funds for this machine we will be having donation buckets at class assemblies until Christmas. There will be no particular expectation for you to make a donation, it is completely voluntary, but if you feel that you can, it will be most appreciated and will speed up our progress towards our target.

The Grade 1 entry point for their next unit ‘Super Humans’ took place last Friday. the children were in the auditorium, on the field and on the basketball courts exploring their ‘super powers’. Some were climbing ropes, some doing yoga, some learning a martial art and some beginning cricket. Everyone was learning and having a very good time. Continuing on from ‘You are what you eat’ the students will be learning more about how their miraculous bodies work in this unit.

The Grade 1 curriculum night was another great success and rounded off the curriculum nights for Lower Primary. Thank you to those parents who attended and to the Grade 1 team for their hard work in preparing the evening. (Or were they just having fun dressed as ‘Super Heroes’?) At each of the curriculum nights I have spoken to parents about the Learning Support Unit to ensure everyone knows that there is support available for students who are experiencing learning challenges. Our three fully qualified psychologists are able to provide different levels of support to coincide with the level of need the student may have. They work in co-operation with the class teachers and parents. They also work in co-operation with outside agencies such as therapists and psychologists.

We have noted that quite a few students are arriving late for school at the moment. Please note the times your child should be in school by:

Pre-K and Kinder 7.30 am
Prepa to 5th Grade 7.10 am for registration at 7.15 am

We will be speaking to those families who are consistently late to help them review their schedules.

Best wishes,

Sharon Short
Head of Primary

Dates for your diary

Lower Primary
Monday 19th: Early Closure for 1st Grade, Upper Primary and Secondary
Monday 19th Lower primary UN continues
Friday 23rd: First Sullivan Assembly 7:30am PAC
Friday 30th: First Rivera Assembly 7:30am PAC
Friday 30th Half term begins
Monday 9th November Return to school 

Upper Primary
Monday 19th: Early Closure for Upper Primary and Secondary
Wednesday 21st: 4th Linares Assembly at 9.20 and 12.15 PAC
Monday 26th - Friday 30th: UN Week
Friday 30th: UN food fair
Wednesday 28th: 3rd Pattenden Assembly at 9.20 and 12.15 PAC
Friday 30th Half term begins
Monday 9th November Return to school 

Secondary News

Grade 6 Empowerment Day and Early Closure - Monday 19th October
Please be reminded that on Monday 19th of October the school is closing early for staff to plan the curriculum. At 11.25am Grades 7 to 12 will depart (older students with Primary siblings should go to the Primary classrooms to collect their brothers and sisters) and the Grade 6s will remain in school, along with the Grade 12 students that are mentors to Grade 6 students, for their empowerment day on the theme ‘Friendship and Team Building’. 

Grade 6 students, and the Grade 12 students that are remaining in school to help, will be treated to a free school lunch from the Cafeteria.

Grade 6 parents please make the necessary arrangements for your child to be collected at 5.00pm on this day. 

As mentioned in last week’s ABC Weekly, on the empowerment days students should come to school wearing their PE uniform, with proper sports shoes. They should also bring with them a towel and a change of clothes. 

Art Trip meeting - Monday 19th October
On Monday at 5.00pm there is a meeting to discuss the final details of the impending Art trip to Amsterdam and Paris (Thursday 29th October to Saturday 7th November). This looks set to be a wonderful experience, with our students, among other things, visiting the Van Gogh, Louvre and Orsay museums. 

Grade 11 Careers Day & the 7th Annual University Fair - Thursday 22nd of October
The ABC Careers Day for Grade 11 students will take place next Thursday (the 22nd of October). For our students, this day is a window into the future world of professional careers and universities. Students start with an official presentation by the United Kingdom Embassy on the topic of ‘Studying in the UK’ and what academic options there are for ABC students.

Students are required to dress in formal attire to add to the feeling of professionalism that should be inherent to the search of a university and course of study that is the right fit for them. With university options in mind, they will move on to a carousel of career talks by professionals actively working in their fields of expertise. Grade 11 students were asked to select 6 career options they would like to know about, and from those choices they will be assigned 4 options that range from medicine, law and engineering, to culinary arts, communications, marketing and psychology, among others.

On the same day, the ABC will also be hosting the 7th Annual University Fair from 10.00am to 3.30pm in the ABC Auditorium. 30 plus institutions from the UK, USA, Costa Rica, Mexico, Spain, Guatemala, Honduras and El Salvador will be represented. Grade 11 students will take turns visiting the fair to have a look at the many university opportunities; Grade 9, 10 and 12 students will also be scheduled to participate at specific times. Parents are also invited to attend, and we hope for your support.

We will be joined by other schools in this event - the American, Panamericana, Livingston and International schools have confirmed their participation. 

It will be a day to celebrate academic life. It will be a day for students to envision themselves in their professional future. 

“ADHD at school”- workshop for parents and students
As part of "ABC Cares" and Parent Partnership, under our Learning Unit Support, we have invited Lic. Marta Gomez, who is a Life Coach and leading specialist in ADHD (Attention Deficit and Hyperactivity Disorder) to run a workshop on "ADHD at school." 

We believe in the importance of working hand in hand for the well-being of our youth and hence we have offered one session for parents in order to address the best way we can support our children and another one for students who are already working with our LSU. Having said that, the workshops are open to all parents and all students. The workshop will focus on understanding how ADHD works and applying effective strategies for home and school. We believe that the educational and personal experience of the students will improve as a result of participation in this workshop. 

Workshop for parents:
Date: Wednesday, October 21st 
Time: 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.
Venue: PAC
The talk will be given in Spanish.

Workshop for students: 
Date: Thursday, October 22nd
Time: 2:00 pm to 4:00 pm
Venue: PAC
The talk will be given in Spanish

If you want your child to attend, please contact Alexandra Novoa in the LSU (

A round-up of the week
  • Breast Cancer Awareness Talk: As it is Breast Cancer Awareness Month, and in conjunction with our ‘100 Healthy Days’, on Monday Dr. Cecilia de Monroy, leading clinical oncologist, addressed our Grade 10, 11 & 12 girls on the topic of breast cancer in a special assembly. Please be reminded that parents, and the wider community, are invited to a talk on the topic of breast cancer by Dr. Cecilia de Monroy on Tuesday 20th of October (from 6.00pm in the PAC).
  • PSAT: On Wednesday Grade 9, 10 & 11 students sat the PSAT examinations. The PSAT is a great way to preview and practice for the SAT as they test the same skills and knowledge as the SAT.
  • PAES - Class of 2016: On Wednesday and Thursday the Grade 12s were off timetable to sit the PAES examinations. The feedback from students is very encouraging and we look forward to receiving the results. 
  • Shoeing Campaign: All week the ABC Shoeing Team have been collecting used shoes for people in need in El Salvador. The team have now extended the campaign until Friday 23rd of October to give the ABC community more time to contribute to this worthy cause. 
Grade 6s with their donations for the Shoeing Campaign. 

Save the Children ‘Race for Survival’ - Saturday 24th of October. 
The Grade 9 students have continued this week (as have the Grade 5s in Primary) to work hard preparing for the upcoming Save the Children ‘Race for Survival’. Race for Survival packs have been on sale all week - the packs, costing $10, include a t-shirt, bandana, ticket for free cake and two tickets for the event (one for the water slide and another for a free sponge throw at a teacher). Friday was the last day to purchase a t-shirt. Students can wear their Race for Survival t-shirt (with jeans) every Friday after half term until the end of term. 

We hope you will be able to join us next Saturday for what looks set to be a really exciting event (from 8.30am to 12.30pm).

All the best,

Stephen Spicer
Head of Secondary

Secondary dates for your diary
Monday 19th October: Early Closure Day for Secondary students
Monday 19th to Friday 23rd October: Astronomy Week
Monday 19th October: Grade 6 (Class 2022) Empowerment Day: Theme ‘Friendship and team building’ 
Monday 19th October: Art Trip meeting, 5.00pm
Thursday 22nd October: Careers Day for Class of 2017 and University Fair for Grades 9 to 12
Friday 23rd October: ABC Founder’s Day
Saturday 24th October: Save the Children ‘Race for Survival’
Monday 26th October: UN Week
Thursday 29th October to Saturday 7th November: Art trip to Amsterdam and Paris
Monday 2nd - Friday 6th November: HALF TERM HOLIDAY
Monday 9th November: British Fortnight begins
Saturday 14th November: MathCounts internal ABC competition
Friday 20th November: Guy Fawkes Party and Christmas Fair
Saturday 21st November: Grade 11 (Class 2017) Empowerment Day: Theme ‘Unity’
Monday 23rd November: Recycling Week
Tuesday 8th December: Grade 10 (Class 2018) Empowerment Day: Theme ‘Perseverance’

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