Friday, 26 February 2016

23: Friday 26th February 2016

From the Director

I would like to remind you to look at our ABC Newsblog where you can catch up with events at school. On the Blog you will see we had a pleasant coffee morning on Tuesday with parents and we also had an interesting presentation by Dr. Guttfreund and Dr. Barrios to parents from bicultural schools in the city about teenage addiction. 

We are looking forward to seeing many of you with your families at the Parent Association Summer carnival tomorrow. We have parking available in the Lycée Français and SISA as well as on our own campus. The event is from 9am - 9 pm and climaxes with music, entertainment, food and shared time together. It will be a fun event and we would like to give a big thank you to the Parents’ Association for the time and effort they put into organising this event. We really appreciate them!

Please make a note in your diary that the School Annual General Meeting or Convocatoria is taking place on Tuesday March 15th at 6 pm. 

The Bicultural Arts Festival has started this week and will be continuing across the school leading up to the Bicultural Arts Festival Performance next weekend. I hope you all have a safe and enjoyable weekend.

Primary News

Dear Parents and Carers,

Thank you to everyone who attended the Primary Spring Fair on Saturday. The feedback that I received from parents was very positive and the students got a lot out of the experience as well as having loads of fun when they were not on duty. We are awaiting final figures but we raised in the region of $10,000 to support the Scholarship Fund - Fairs to Educate . Great news indeed. Thank you too to the team of primary staff who organised and took complete responsibility for the event as well as all staff members who turned up on the day. 

I was able to try nearly every stall and can vouch for how exciting it was to participate as well as the enthusiasm and encouragement of the student stall holders. Please see some more of the photos at our news blog link:

It was also wonderful to have our Grade 2 parents in for the IPC unit ‘Chocolate’ exit point. Parents were able to see an exhibition on the history of chocolate, how it is made, where it grows best and many other aspects related to chocolate. They were also able to taste some very interesting flavours! Well done to all our Grade 2 students for their hard work and to their teachers for organising the event. Once again, photos are available on the class blogs. 

Fransortes was brought to school by his son this week and we were delighted to be able to give him $1006.00. We would like to thank everyone who contributed. We are hoping that he will be well enough to join us again next Children’s Day! 

Next week is Book Week, in recognition of World Book Day which is on Thursday 3rd March. In Primary the children will be enjoying a range of fun activities related to books, reading and stories. 

Reading is a vital component of children's education, being important across the curriculum and a great source of pleasure that will last a lifetime.

We hope that many parents will be able to come and read or tell a story to their child's class. If you haven't yet volunteered, please contact your child's teacher so that they can arrange it.

Friday 4th March is Book Character Day. All Primary children should come dressed up as their chosen character, and bring the book that the character appears in. There will be a parade and the children will complete other activities related to their character.

The children are invited to participate in a competition to design a bookmark. One lucky winner from each grade will have their bookmark professionally produced and distributed to all the children in their grade. Entries should be in by the end of next week, and the more creative, the better!

Please note English books will be on sale all week. Start building your children’s personal libraries!

Walking for Water will be taking place on March 11th. All primary children will be taking part by carrying water in their backpacks or blue bags around the field and therefore should wear their PE kit on that day. We want our students to understand that they are very privileged to have access to clean water and that many children in the world, including here in El Salvador, have to collect water for their family before they can go to school. Funds raised will be used to buy water filter/dispensers for a local school. Please keep an eye open for the full information that will be sent home shortly.

Swimming Galas will be taking place in the week before the Easter Holidays. Please do make sure you know when your child’s event is taking place so that you can come along and ensure they come with all their swimming clothes and equipment.

The Primary school is supporting the STEAMFEST on the 16th March by holding our Science Fair that day. Students from Prepa to Grade 5 will be creating science projects and experiments during the week running up to that day and then displaying their creations. They will be using their Science skills to devise their projects, their Technology skills to build them, their Engineering skills to make sure they work and are stable, their Art skills to decorate them and provide supporting information, titles and instructions etc and their Mathematical skills to take measurements and get their results. Please ask your children what they are planning to do.

Is a charity that helps people of any age with mental illnesses. It provides basic education such as learning to read, write, colour and count - all of this depending on the individual’s capacity to learn. Unfortunately the organisation is having some economical problems, so our CAS students decided to help them by collecting goods and money. In Primary we will be donating food items to support this cause. More information will be shared soon.

It is always a busy time in school so we wish you a relaxing weekend with your children.

Sharon Short
Head of Primary

Dates for your diary

Lower Primary
Friday 26th: Extra-curricular activities - session 3 finishes
Monday 29th: Extra-curricular activities - session 4 begins
Book Week
Friday 11th: Walk for Water
Friday 11th: 1st grade sleepover
Monday 14th: Prepa night activity
Wednesday 16th: Steamfest
Friday 18th: Pre-Kinder Rampone assembly - PAC - 7:45am
Monday 21st March - Friday 1st April - Easter holidays - school closed

Upper Primary
Friday 25th: End of 3rd Extracurricular term
Monday 29th: Start of Extracurricular term 4
Monday 29th: Book Week
Friday 4th: 5th Grade Camping
Saturday 5th: Bicultural Festival Teatro Presidente
Wednesday 9th: 3rd Quijano Assembly
Thursday 10th: Music Week
Friday11: Walk for Water
Monday 14th: Brain Awareness Week
Tuesday 15th: Swimming Gala 2nd Grade 11:30a.m.
Wednesday 16th: Science Fair
Thursday 17th:
3rd Grade Swimming Gala from 9:30a.m. thru 11:00a.m.
4th Grade Swimming Gala from 11:30a.m. thru 1:00p.m.
Friday 18th: 5th Grade Swimming Gala 11:30a.m.
Friday 18th: End of Session 3

Secondary News

Dear Parents / Guardians,

IB Geography Antigua Trip - Wednesday 24th to Saturday 27th of February
The Grade 11 students set off early Wednesday for their Geography field trip to Antigua.

Reports in thus far are that everybody is having a great time. Parents of children involved please see the trip blog that has been created, and is being regularly updated, for details of what they have been doing (along with pictures - one of which is above).

Thank you to Mr Kilford (Head of Geography) for organising the trip and thank you also to Mrs Duarte, Ms Harrison and Mr Rombout for helping to supervise the trip.

Grade 10 Options Evening - Monday 29th February
On Monday we have the Grade 10 IB options evening in the PAC (from 5.30pm to 6.15pm), following by Parent Teacher Meetings in the Auditorium (6.15pm to 8.30 pm). This is a very important evening for Grade 10 students and parents and we hope all will be present. 

The presentation in the PAC will cover the key dates for the remaining months of Grade 10, we will discuss CAS / MINED hours and we will be explaining the structure of the IB Diploma; along with the options available and the process for selecting courses from these options. 

The Parent Teacher Meetings that follow will be an opportunity for parents and students to get feedback on student progress to date (along with an analysis of student performance in the recent mock examinations) and subject teachers will be giving advice on how students can best prepare for the upcoming iGCSE examinations in May / June.

National debate contest - Saturday 27th of February
The National Debate Contest organised by ESEN starts this Saturday, and it will run for three weeks consecutively on Saturday, February 27th, March 5th and 12th. The ABC Debate Team will participate with 36 other school teams from all over El Salvador. This is the 8th edition of this contest and through the years our school has reached the finals in many occasions. We feel very confident and proud of our team this year, which is made up of five students from Grade 11. They have been working rigorously for two weeks now, guided by their teachers in the Spanish Department and coaches. 

The general topic for the debates this year is the transparency of our institutions. For the first debate, the issue to argue for and against whether or not the health status of the President should be part of the public domain, or must it be kept confidential. To prepare the students have researched the law of our country, judicial cases, international law and many other sources of information. The debate is conducted at a high technical level and it must be based on law. 

Our team has done its work, and they are ready. We wish them the best at their first match. 
Eric Quijano
National School Director
University Guidance & Careers

Model United Nations New York Trip - 1st March to 5th March
From the 1st of March to the 5th of March a mixed group of Grade 10 and 11 students will be venturing forth to New York to visit the United Nations. The programme starts with a day of icebreakers and a bit of culture at the United Nations school. The students will be hosted within the United Nations building itself and will take part in two days of lectures and seminars under the overriding topic of the media's influence: opinions, activism and outcomes. Examples of the sessions on offer are:-
  • “To what extent is the use of social media in advocacy beneficial or detrimental to society?”
  • “Independent or corporate media: Which is more effective?“
Guest speakers range from Ban Ki Moon (Secretary-General of the United Nations) to various high profile journalists and editors such as Casey Neistat (an American film director, producer, creator of popular YouTube videos and co-founder of social media company Beme) and Susan Chira (Assistant Managing Editor for news at The New York Times).
James Merry
Head of History & Assistant Head of Grade 10

Book Week & World Book Day (Thursday 3rd of March)
Next week is Book Week in the Secondary School and internationally it is World Book Day on Thursday. Designated by UNESCO, World Book Day is a celebration of books and reading and its aim is encourage children to explore the pleasures of books and reading. The event is marked in over 100 countries all over the world.

It is important for teenagers to continue the habit of reading as, research has shown, it helps them to:
  • deal with their increasingly complex world, and understand some of the adult issues they will have to deal with;
  • know they are not alone – that others may be thinking and feeling the way they do;
  • open lines of communication, particularly if parents, teachers and friends discuss what they are reading;
  • share and see how others have found solutions to problems;
  • develop their vocabulary;
  • broaden their imaginations;
  • improve their writing;
  • deal with the increasing demands of school work; and,
  • gain confidence when speaking.
Evidence suggests that reading for pleasure is more likely to determine whether a child does well at school than their social or economic background.

Here are three tips to encourage your son / daughter to read on a regular basis:
  1. Read for enjoyment. Model the behaviour that you want your son / daughter to display. If they see you reading regularly for pleasure they may well echo this behaviour.
  2. Have books that interest your son / daughter available. If there are no books at home that interest him / her then go to the book shop and buy some (or borrow some books).
  3. Subscribe your son / daughter to a magazine about his / her interest. Magazine articles are short to read, but it is still reading. A magazine subscription will ensure that your child has something new to read regularly (and it may well help them develop an interest).
Bicultural Festival
On Monday and Tuesday we hosted the Bicultural Arts Festival (thank you to Mrs Gonzalez, Head of Art, for organising and hosting this) and last weekend we staged the first Bicultural Drama Workshop (thank you to Mr Olwande for all your work on this). Meanwhile other students have been practicing hard for musical performances (credit to Mr Diaz and Ms Leong who have have both been working closely with our students).

Last year’s performances at the festival were amazing and this year looks set to be as good, if not better. Please do attend one of the nights next weekend if you can. 

I wish you a great weekend and I hope to see you at the Summer Carnival tomorrow.

Kind regards,

Stephen Spicer
Head of Secondary

Secondary dates for your diary
Wednesday 24th - Saturday 27th February: IB Geography Antigua Trip
Saturday 27th February: Summer Carnival 2016 
Saturday 27th February: National debate contest
w/c Monday 29th February: Book Week
Monday 29th February: Grade 10 IB Options Meetings & Parent Teacher Meetings, 5:30pm PAC
Tuesday 1st - 5th March: MUN New York trip
Thursday 3rd: World Book Day
Saturday 6th March: Bicultural Arts Festival 
Thursday 10th - Monday 14th March: Music Week 
Friday 11th March: Science Fair final
w/c Monday 14th March: Brain Awareness Week and British Science Week
Monday 14th March: Grade 6 'Friendship and teamwork' empowerment afternoon (11:30am-5pm).
Wednesday 16th March: STEAM Fest 2016 
Wednesday 16th March: Open Parent Partnership “Netiquette” 6pm PAC 
Thursday 17th March: Grade 12 Parent Teacher Meetings, 3.15pm Auditorium
Friday 18th March: Last day of Second Term
Monday 21st March - Friday 1st April: Easter holidays (school closed)
Monday 4th April: Back to school - First day of Third Term
w/c Monday 11th April: Art Week
Friday 15th April: World Art Day
w/c Monday 18th April: Earth Week
Monday 18th - Thursday 28th April: Grade 11 exams
Thursday 21st April: Secondary School closes at 11:30am - Grade 7 'Assertiveness and independence' empowerment afternoon (11:30am-5pm).
Thursday 28th April: Last day of school for Grade 10 & 12 students
Monday 2nd May: IB exams start for Grade 12 students
Saturday 7th May: Spiritual retreat for Grades 9 to 12 students (Comité Católico ABC)
Monday 9th May: IGCSE exams start for Grade 10 students
Tuesday 10th May:Grade 6 trip
w/c Monday 16th May: Cultural Diversity Week
Wednesday 18th - Friday 27th May: Grade 9 exams 
Friday 20th May: Secondary School closes at 11:30am - Grade 8 'Ethical and moral choices' empowerment afternoon (11:30am-5pm).
Thursday 19th May: ABC Digital Awards, 6 pm PAC
w/c Monday 30th May: Health Awareness Week
Tuesday 31st May: Thanksgiving Ceremony for Class 2016

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