Friday, 11 March 2016

25: Friday 11th March 2016

From the Director

I would like to start this week by reminding you that we have our ABC Annual Convocatoria on Tuesday 15th March at 6pm and I hope many of you will be able to attend. I will be talking about the school’s plans for the year ahead and we will be presenting the school finances. It is important we all understand our school project and where we are going!

This week has been an amazing week for Art at the School as we opened the IB Art Festival on Tuesday which followed from the weekend of artistic performances in the Bicultural Arts festival. You can see reports of both of these events on the ABC News Blog. On Wednesday we sent you a questionnaire for your feedback on school related issues and I hope many of you will find time to reply. It is important we hear your voice. The link to the questionnaire follows: 

We have another busy weekend coming up. On Saturday our debate team will be involved in the final rounds of the ESEN Debate and our students return from their Mathcounts trip to Mexico. We look forward to seeing them in action.

I would like to remind all of us of the importance of certain aspects of our school community. One of those aspects is punctuality. It is a very important trait and something all of us must show a good example to our children or they will not grow up to respect punctuality. This includes of course the way we behave in school but it also includes you as parents ensuring you play your part. Obviously there are occasions where we are late which are beyond our control but I do ask that all parents try to ensure they are punctual in the morning so your children arrive routinely, unstressed and on time. If you know punctuality is an issue for your child or your family please make a special effort to arrive a little earlier in the morning. I would also like to ask that you are punctual collecting children at an agreed time. It is never nice to see children waiting a long time in the car parks apparently unsure of where their parents are. I do not want to be seen as critical and I am genuinely asking that we all make an effort in this respect.

On a final note. I am sure you have noticed the information screens in our car parks. If you miss the notice and would like to see it again they are also broadcast on our website. They can be accessed via the Calendar tab and the Information Screen button. The link is:

Primary News

Dear Parents and Carers,

I really enjoyed the Bicultural Festival again this year. I felt very emotional and proud when our young choirs were singing together with the other schools and our teachers were conducting. I felt we reached a particularly high standard this year. I also enjoyed all the other elements of the festival including the drama and dance and I hope you were able to go along and enjoy it too. Well done to all the students who took part.

This year our Grade 5 students enjoyed their camp on the school grounds. Last Friday night they were using all parts of the campus to track down their teachers and work in teams and on the Saturday morning they had the chance to try out paintball and inflatable boxing amongst other things. Needless to say a great time was had by all, as the students just love being together in this environment. Thank you very much to all the staff who planned and participated in the event. We really appreciate them giving up their time for the students. Please have a look at the class blogs.

Today our Primary students took part in the ‘Walking for Water’. They got to experience what it is like for less fortunate families who have to go a great distance to collect water for drinking, food preparation and washing themselves and their clothing. THey understood that many children are not allowed to go to school until they have collected all the water their family will need for the day. It is very important that our students understand how privileged they are and learn to have compassion for those in more difficult circumstances. I know many of you have sponsored your children for this event and our goal is to raise $1500 for a clean water dispenser for a local school. We will let you know how we got on next week. Please see the ABC news for photos.

On Wednesday the Primary students will be showing their science projects as part of the STEAM FEST. Thank you for the support you have given from home and I am sure you have seen the students enthusiasm for this project. I have seen some very excited students around school. Students may come to school dressed as scientists if they would like to on Wednesday.

Over the last few weeks Lower Primary have been collecting stationery to redistribute to local needy causes. Now it is Upper Primary’s turn to make some donations to assist HOPAC the society that helps with mental health issues. Please could each grade bring in the following items.

Food or hygiene supplies
2nd Grade
3rd Grade
4th Grade
toilet paper
5th Grade
soap (Bath Soap & Shower Gel Liquid Body Wash)

The class that brings in the most items will be treated to a pizza lunch by the CAS students who are organising this collection. The students will also be presenting to classes over the next week to explain the cause and how their donations will help.

The Madres Enlace for third grade organised a bake sale on Thursday. The students were able to enjoy some very healthy and tasty snacks. Thank you Madres.

Every Thursday morning I have a carpark duty in the administration car park. I would just like to congratulate the Primary students for making the drop-off as quick as possible this week. I was impressed with how they hopped out in seconds with their bags all ready; no need for a long conversation with the person who was driving them; just ‘bye’ and a wave and they were on their way. It really does keep the queue to a minimum when the students get out of the cars quickly like this. Well done.

Best wishes for a restful weekend.

Sharon Short
Head of Primary

Dates for your diary

Lower Primary
Friday 11th: 1st grade sleepover
Monday 14th: 1st grade Swimming Gala - 11:30am - Big pool
Monday 14th: Prepa night activity
Wednesday 16th: Steamfest/Science Fair
Friday 18th: Pre-Kinder Rampone assembly - PAC - 7:45am
Monday 21st March - Friday 1st April - Easter holidays - school closed
Monday 4th April: first day back to school.

Upper Primary
Monday 14th: Brain Awareness Week
Tuesday 15th: Swimming Gala 2nd Grade 11:30a.m.
Wednesday 16th: Science Fair/Steamfest
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.
Monday 21st March - Friday 1st April - Easter holidays - school closed
Monday 4th April: first day back to school.

Secondary News

Dear Parents / Guardians,

Last weekend (Friday 4th and Saturday 5th March) was the Bicultural Festival. Both nights (Friday for Drama and Dance, and Saturday for Music) were truly excellent. Well done to all the students involved. 

Last Saturday also saw continued success for the ABC ESEN Debate Team. The ABC ESEN Debate Team are now through to Round 4 and will compete tomorrow (Saturday) against the Highland School. Rounds 5 and 6 (the final rounds) also take place tomorrow. 

Following their triumph in the nationals, the ABC Mathscounts students went to Monterrey, Mexico, this week to compete in the regionals. The ABC team came a very respectable 5th in the Maths Relay competition (with 18 teams competing). Well done.

Please be reminded that on Wednesday 16th March we have the Open Parent Partnership on Netiquette (see last week’s ABC Weekly for details) and this afternoon is the Senior Musical Recital (3.00pm to 4.15pm - see poster below).

Music Week continues next week until Wednesday (please see last week’s ABC Weekly for details).

Social Media is becoming a huge part of marketing in today’s world, and the ABC considers it a valuable tool for this purpose, which is why it has recently created Instagram and Snapchat accounts. We want our students to know that these platforms CAN be used responsibly and that this is purely a marketing effort on behalf of the school, not a way to monitor their activities on these applications. Please encourage your child/ren to add their school on social media, the usernames are:

Snapchat: abcrocs
Instagram: abcrocs16

Science Fair
This week has seen the Semi-Final of the Grade 6 and Grade 7 Science Fair. The theme this year was Space as the theme was chosen to correspond with that of British Science Week and pupils have certainly reached for the stars! Pupils have been working hard in and out of school for the past fortnight to prepare for this year’s Science Fair. It was refreshing to see many different takes on the theme, with some pupils preferring to concentrate on Personal Space (looking at Psychology based themes) or environmental space (looking at how Science can help the environment). Others have taken the theme more literally and have examined how we can use our scientific skills to explore the Milky Way. 

Mr Spicer and Ms Burns were extremely impressed with the high standard of entrants and it was a very difficult task choosing ten teams to go through to the final. The final will take place next Wednesday where the grade winners will receive medals from the British Ambassador during STEAM Fest. 

Well done to everyone involved - it really was out of this world!
Miss Ravenscroft
Second in Department, Science

Grade 6 Empowerment Afternoon - Monday 14th March
On Monday from 11.30am to 5.00pm we have the Grade 6 Empowerment Afternoon on the theme ‘Friendship and Teamwork’. Lessons will continue as usual for the other grades.

The Grade 6 students will undertake a series of activities designed to emphasise the importance of Friendship and Teamwork. Team or group work teaches students the fundamental skills associated with working as a collective unit toward a common goal. Teamwork is important for developing communication, compromise and collective effort. During the afternoon the students will have to agree on how to tackle various challenges and will be drawing upon one another’s strengths to accomplish the assigned tasks. 

Students will need to wear their PE kit on Monday (as usual). 

Thank you in advance to the Madres Enlace for providing refreshments.

Parents of Grade 6 children, please make arrangements for your child to be collected at 5.00pm on Monday. 

STEAM Fest - Wednesday 16th March 
WAAM-We Are All Makers
Next week promises to be spectacular. Not only will Brain Awareness Week and Science Week come together, but this year they do so along with our community of makers, which will trigger an explosion of Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Mathematics initiatives. The event is STEAM Fest and it promises to captivate, compel and inspire the community through creativity and innovation.

This is the first ever STEAM Focused event to take place at the ABC, which brings together the whole school, schools from the community, as well as local educational and STEAM based organisations.

Over 240 ABC Staff and students are directly involved, as are several local schools, international organisations and businesses. 

The Fest or Faire opens on March 16th at 8:00, with a keynote delivered by the British Ambassador on the topic of British Science Week. The Ambassador will then award the prizes for the winning Primary and Secondary Science Faire projects. The event will run all day and end at 2:00pm, with the final Keynote delivered by via video, by one of our very own STEAM pioneers, Exabrit Roberto Melendez. 

During the day students, staff and visiting teams will run exhibits, creative centres and in some cases, competitions. A total of 57 exhibitions and creative centres and 34 Science Fair finalist projects, will fill the Auditorium and PAC, and spill over into the Auditorium Mezzanine and Drama Studio.

Classes from every year group will visit STEAM Fest during the course of the day and be able to engage in creative, active experimentation and learning. STEAM Fest promises to stimulate all the senses and build cognitive and community connections for everyone who involved.

Parents are invited to drop in during the day and visit the various STEAM Fest venues, which will be open all day, but close briefly at Secondary lunch and break times. Parking for the event will be on the basketball courts, which can be accessed through the Administration parking lot. 

We do hope to see you there and invite you watch our latest teaser, which will give you a good idea of the sorts of activities that are taking place, in preparation for STEAM Fest 2016.

Finally we would like to thank our wonderful STEAM Fest sponsors, who play an important role in STEAM Fest 2016.
Jennifer Garcia
Learning Resources Centre Coordinator

Grade 12 Parent Teacher Partnership - Thursday 17th March
Next Thursday, from 3.15pm to 6.00pm in the Auditorium, we have the Grade 12 Parent Teacher Meetings. The Grade 12s are at a crucial stage in their education and this event is an opportunity for parents and students to get feedback on 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 IB examinations in May / June.

As explained in previous ABC Weeklies, the Grade 12 students should be making the appointments with their teachers in advance of next Thursday.

Paraiso Down T-shirt Campaign 2016

On the last day of this term, Friday 18th March, we have a Paraiso Down T-shirt / Jeans Day. 

We encourage all students to buy a t-shirt and support this great cause. 

The t-shirts cost $5 and are on sale outside the Secondary School Office during lunch times.

Gift of Life International - “Latidos de Esperanza”
Gift of Life International is an organisation which was founded with the sole purpose of providing help and happiness to children who suffer from heart diseases in developing countries. In 2000 this organisation chose El Salvador as one of the countries in which to set their operations, and they established themselves with the name “Latidos de Esperanza”.

As a way of raising funds for heart surgery, Actúa are running a raffle (tickets available from any member of Actúa). The tickets cost $1.00 and all the money collected will go to helping these children.

The raffle is for a 2-day 1-night stay at the hotel “Royal Decameron” for 2 people. The draw will take place Thursday 17th March and the winner will be announced on Friday 18th in the VISTA (with the lucky winner being able to collect the tickets from the Secondary School Office that same day).

All the best,

Stephen Spicer
Head of Secondary

Secondary dates for your diary
w/c Monday 14th March: Brain Awareness Week and British Science Week
Monday 14th March: Grade 6 'Friendship and teamwork' empowerment afternoon (11:30am-5.00pm).
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: Paraiso Down T-shirt / Jeans day 
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 and IGCSE Art exam Paper 1 i
Tuesday 5th April: IGCSE Art exam Paper 1 ii
w/c Monday 11th April: Art Week
Friday 15th April: World Art Day
w/c Monday 18th April: Earth Week
Tuesday 19th - Friday 29th April: Grade 11 exams
Thursday 21st April: Secondary School closes at 11:30am - Grade 7 'Assertiveness and independence' empowerment afternoon (11:30am-5pm).
Tuesday 26th April: IGCSE exams start for Grade 10 students
Thursday 28th April: Last day for Grades 10 & 12 classes
Monday 2nd May: IB exams start for Grade 12 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) and end of IB exams
Thursday 19th May: ABC Digital Awards, 6 pm PAC
Tuesday 24th May: Grade 9 & 11 Parent Partnership meeting
w/c Monday 30th May: Health Awareness Week
Tuesday 31st May: Thanksgiving Ceremony for Class 2016
Thursday 2nd June: 5th Grade to 6th Grade and Grade 5 Parent meeting - Secondary Induction, 6 p.m. PAC
Thursday 9th June: Class 2016 Graduation Day - Graduation Ceremony, 5 p.m. Auditorium
Friday 10th June: End of IGCSE exams
Monday 13th June: Award Assemblies for Grades 6 & 7
Thursday 16th June: Assemblies for Grades 10 & 11 and Grades 6 to 9 & 11 
Friday 17th June: Last day of School Year

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