Week 17 in Year 1.3

Dear Parents,

We’d like to say a massive thank you for the lovely Year 1 party that you arranged for the children this week. We really appreciated your help preparing the food and drinks, setting up the party and spending time celebrating the end of term with us. The students really enjoyed it.

On Wednesday the Year 1 students did a great job at the Arts Assembly. They paraded in while playing their musical instruments and then performed for the audience. Some of the children were quite nervous about going on stage, but they all overcame their fears and felt very proud of themselves after the assembly. Thank you to those of you who were able to attend this event and support the children.

I would like to take this opportunity to inform you that this week was Ms Ester’s last week in Y1.3 as the time of her maternity cover has come to an end. It has been fantastic to have her in our classroom this past term supporting all the children with their learning. After the break, we will be joined by Ms Frieda Siluzugila who is a very experienced Y1 assistant teacher and whom the children met this week while she spent time in our class getting to know everyone.

I wish you all a very happy holiday and I am looking forward to seeing everyone rested and refreshed again in January!

Click here for some photos from this week.

Best wishes,

Ms Doris

Week 16 in Year 1.3

Dear Parents,

Thank you so much for attending the Celebration of Learning this week. The students were incredibly excited to share their learning with you and clearly enjoyed the event. They did a wonderful job of talking about their musical instruments, sharing their teaching books about caring for the planet, showing you their nature photography and guiding you around the other work they had on display in the classroom. We hope you enjoyed the event as much as we did.

We are coming to the end of our Sharing the Planet unit and so have been busy this week finishing off various tasks. During the coming writing sessions the students will work on publishing a favorite teaching book to keep in their Writing Progress Folders. Next week I will also be sending home the other teaching books that the children have been working on in recent weeks. When you find some spare time over the vacation, please encourage your child to share these books with you.

Next Wednesday (13th December) at 2:10 the Year 1 students will be performing at the Primary School assembly. The plan is for them to get the assembly off to a great start by marching in while playing the instruments they made in Music class. You are very welcome to attend this event.

Please enjoy the photos from this week!

Kind regards,

Ms Doris

Week 14 in Year 1.3

Dear Parents,

As you know, one of the projects that the Year 1 students are currently working on in connection with our current unit is to make musical instruments using recycled materials. It has been wonderful to see how motivated the children are by this project. They are busy tapping, scratching and shaking the things they find to see if they make an interesting sound. This is a great example of the children taking action based on their learning at school. Thank you so much to those of you who were able to support the students in making their musical instruments during Ms Betsy’s music class this week. Your help was greatly appreciated. We have been working in a similar way in class to turn ‘trash’ to ‘treasure’ by making models out of recycled materials.

One of the scientific skills that we are helping the students to develop is the ability to look really closely and thoughtfully when observing the natural world. This week we practiced this by going outside to take ‘nature photographs’ on iPads. The children each had their own iPad to work with and ‘zoomed in’ to see what flowers, leaves, tree trunks and other natural resources around the school look like up close.

While we were outside taking photographs, some children noticed lots of empty wrappers and other rubbish laying around. We had a discussion about how to care for the Earth and our school environment and the students decided to pick up the litter and take it to the nearest bin. They also asked that we go on a trash hunt the next day to find and collect more trash around the school in order to help our planet.

In Math we have been focusing on vocabulary associated with position, location and direction. The students have been learning to give and follow directions such as above, below, next to or forwards and backwards. One way that we approached this was to place shapes in a specific place on a piece of paper according to instructions given by someone else. We also played a game called ‘robot and scientist’. The scientist’s job was to guide the robot around the playground by giving clear instructions such as ‘forward one step, left one step, right one step, etc.’ It was a great way for the children to practice their collaboration skills as well as to develop their mathematical vocabulary.

We have also been focusing on the numbers 11 to 20. The students are increasingly aware of the fact that a number such as 12 is made up of one group of ten and two more.

In writing we have continued working on writing teaching books. This week we thought about the purpose of a book’s title and how it often gives us a good idea of what the book will be about. The students have been creating and writing titles for some of their own teaching books, such as ‘Safari Animals’ or ‘All About Nesting’.

Please enjoy these photos from this week.

Kind regards,

Ms Doris

Year 1 Sharing of Learning

Dear Parents,

You are invited to the Year 1 Sharing of Learning session on Thursday 7th December from 8:30 – 9:00am.

As you know, our students are busy inquiring into how our actions can make a difference to the environment we share. They will be applying their learning to write a teaching book about how to care for the environment. We would like the students to share this book with you during the celebration of learning. 

We look forward to seeing you in our classrooms then.

Kind regards,

The Year 1 Team

Learning through concepts (Week 13)

Dear Parents,

When our students inquire into the units of inquiry, they do so through a conceptual lens. What does this mean in practice?  What are students learning through these conceptual lenses?

Through our first line of inquiry ‘Appreciating the Earth’s natural and human-made resources’ students are inquiring into the difference between natural resources and human-made resources. They are being encouraged to appreciate the nature within our school campus by going on walks around the school. On different walks they have stopped to make observational drawings and worked with lists to record the natural and human-made resources they see. 

Another concept that is framing the learning during this unit is responsibility. Specifically, what is our responsibility towards our environment? Our students are developing their understanding of this concept through gaining a better understanding of what waste means and how resources might be wasted. Some of the students’ comments were that food, water, paper, tape and other school materials as well as time are sometimes wasted. 

 

Ways to help/support your child at home

This unit provides a wonderful opportunity for engaging in open discussions with your child. One of the most important ways you can assist your child at home is to connect with nature as much as you can and to draw their attention to the environment around them.

This week our school hosted a parent coffee morning about how we develop our students’ mathematical skills. A skill that we are aiming to develop throughout the year is our students’ number sense. How?

One way is by subitizing, a term devised by the theorist Piaget referring to the ability to instantly recognize the number of objects in a small group without needing to count them, such as being able to recognize the number of dots when using dice without having to count each one individually.

Why is subitizing important? A predominant focus of our early math curriculum is the development of an understanding of number. Subitizing is an essential part of developing number sense as it helps children relate to numbers and to actual items or groups of items. This is known as number conservation. It is not uncommon that young children learn to count by rote but do not really understand the meaning behind what they are doing. By looking at groups of objects, children can start to develop an understanding of how a number is made up: for example, six dots could be two sets of three dots, or a set of four dots and two dots. This understanding of part-part-whole relationships helps children to separate and combine numbers and accelerates understanding of addition and subtraction.

Playing dice games at home is an excellent way of supporting mathematical understanding with your child – and great way to spend family time together.

Please enjoy some photos from Week 13 at school.

Best wishes,

Ms Doris

Recycled Instruments Message from Ms Betsy

Dear Y1 Parents,

In music class we are inquiring into how we can create instruments

using recycled materials.

We need your help!

Please continue bringing to school any materials that can be used to create an instrument.

Please clean anything before you send it to school.

We will create the instruments together in Music class, but if your child

feels inspired to experiment at home, by all means, don’t stop them.

Examples of good materials to send to school are:

Plastic Bottles

Bottle Caps

Paper or Plastic Tubes

Boxes

Metal Cans

Plastic Bags

Cardboard

Buttons

Nails

Beads

Etc.

Please encourage your children to tap, shake and scrape their way through

your recyclables to find some suitable things to bring for Music class.

Thank you for your help!

Best Regards,

Betsy Stalter

PYP Music Teacher

FOLSCO Fundraiser

Dear Parents,

While we are fortunate enough to end the year with our loved ones, indulging in nice food, and exchanging gifts, there are children who never get a chance to experience any of this. Children who are parentless, homeless, and vulnerable living on the streets of Luanda.

FOLSCO- Friends of Luanda’s Street Children, is a charity community with the aim to help vulnerable homeless children and orphans in Luanda. Their mission is to raise awareness about street children, connect shelters to companies for funds and financially support the existing shelters through collection of donations and fundraising events. If you would like to find more information about FOLSCO here is the website, http://folsco.org/ .

Last year, LIS students from Yr1 and Yr2 helped FOLSCO to prepare 200 parcels to give out to the homeless street children during their End of the Year Party. We would like to repeat this charitable event this year but expand the fundraiser to include year 3-6 as well. Hopefully we will be able to reach out further and include Shelters and Orphanages who have opened their doors to these children.

We are kindly asking parents and families to donate toothpastes, toothbrushes, soap bars, crayons (pack of 10), and drawing pads and bring them to school from Nov 27- Dec 8. If you are able to also bring plastic or paper ‘gift bags’ that would be very appreciated. Your child’s homeroom teacher will collect the items in the classroom.

The Year 3 students will be helping to make parcels with the above donated items during the week Dec 11-15. They will use their own initiatives to decorate the parcels and perhaps make cards as well.

We appreciate your contributions and so will these well deserving children.

Kind Regards,

Primary Team

 

Este ano, não se esqueça das crianças mais necessitadas de Luanda

Caros Pais,

Enquanto muitos têm a sorte de passar o fim do ano com aqueles de quem mais gostam, desfrutando de boa comida e trocando presentes, há crianças que nem sequer sabem o que isso significa. Crianças que crescem sem pais, sem casa, e vivem vulneráveis pelas ruas de Luanda.

A comunidade FOLSCO (Amigos das Crianças de Rua de Luanda) tem como missão ajudar as crianças e órfãos que vivem desamparados nas ruas de Luanda. O objectivo da FOLSCO é sensibilizar o público para as condições destas crianças, colocar os abrigos e lares em contacto com empresas que possam contribuir e apoiar com fundos as instituições que já proporcionam alguma ajuda, promovendo recolhas de donativos e eventos de angariação de fundos. Para saber mais acerca da missão e objectivos da FOLSCO, por favor visite o site http://folsco.org/.

O ano passado, os alunos da LIS dos Anos 1 e 2 ajudaram a FOLSCO a preparar 200 embrulhos para distribuir às crianças de rua durante a Festa de Fim de Ano. Este ano, gostaríamos de repetir esta iniciativa solidária, e ir ainda mais longe, incluindo também os alunos dos Anos 3 a 6. Esperamos assim conseguir chegar a mais Abrigos e Orfanatos que dependem da nossa ajuda para acolher estas crianças que tanto precisam.

Por isso estamos a pedir aos pais e às famílias para fazer um donativo de escovas e pastas de dentes, sabonetes, lápis de cor (caixas de 10) e cadernos de desenho, e entregar estes artigos na escola a partir do dia 27 de Novembro até 8 de Dezembro. Se puderem também incluir um saco de papel ou plástico que sirva de embrulho, ficamos muito agradecidos. Os professores de homeroom ficarão encarregues de recolher todos os artigos doados nas suas respectivas salas.

Durante a semana de 11 a 15 de Dezembro, os alunos da Primária Y3 terão oportunidade de ajudar a fazer os embrulhos com os artigos angariados, decorar os sacos como melhor entenderem e talvez incluir também um cartão com uma mensagem.

Agradecemos desde já a vossa colaboração e apoio, e sabemos que as crianças também ficarão gratas.

Com os melhores cumprimentos,

A Equipa da Primária

Week 11 in Year 1.3

Dear Parents,

It’s been a short but busy week. We have continued tuning in to our new ‘Sharing The Planet’ unit of inquiry. The students have thought more about the meaning of the word ‘environment,’ particularly the environments they know well such as their home environment and the school environment.

The children thoroughly enjoyed the opportunity of dressing up today and it was great to see so many of them enthusiastically participating in this event.

Wishing you all a lovely long weekend!

Ms Doris

Week 10 in Year 1.3

Dear Parents,

Thank you so much for taking the time to meet with me at your child’s conference. It was great to get the opportunity to share your child’s learning with you and to set new goals for future learning.

This week in class we began work on our new unit of inquiry. The central idea for this unit is: Our actions can make a difference to the environment we share. We began by discussing what this central idea means. ‘Environment’ was a new word for many of the students and so we spent time thinking about what ‘environment’ means. Someone knew that an environment is ‘what is around us’. We looked around us and talked about our school and home environments. It would be great if you could have further conversations with your child at home about what an environment is.

In Math we started work on the ‘Shape and Space’ strand of our Math programme and we explored different 2D and 3D shapes. The students also made their own 2D and 3D solids out of playdoh and we started comparing them. For example, some children noticed that a cube looks ‘a little bit like a square but the cube isn’t flat like the square’. They also noticed that a circle is like ‘a squished sphere’. 

During writing time we are now working on writing ‘Teaching Books’. The students think about something they know a lot about and then write a book to teach others about it too. Some of their ideas included teaching others about painting, going swimming or different parts of a car. We have also been focusing on the letter s and brainstormed lots of words that start with ‘s’. 

We had lots of fun with our Buddies this week making Halloween crafts. 

Athletics Day was a great success and a lot of fun despite the rain. Thank you to those of you who were able to come along and support the children. A big thank you also goes to the PE Department for planning such a well organized event.

Please enjoy these photos from the week.

Kind regards,

Ms. Doris

Week 8 in Year 1.3

Dear Parents,

Here are a few highlights from our week:

On Tuesday, all students participated in Olympics Day. The children had a fantastic time and it was wonderful to see them working together with the older students to complete the games and challenges. These included moving around a course with their legs tied to other student’s legs, getting the entire team across the field without stepping on the grass when using only three mats to help and transporting water from one bucket to another using cups while some team members were blindfolded.
These activities provided the students with a great opportunity to apply what they have learned in class about how to collaborate well with others and work as a team.

In Writing this week we have focused on adding labels to the sketches we draw when making books. For example, the students have been writing their own names or ‘me’ above pictures of themselves. They have also been encouraged to label the other objects and characters in their stories, such as ‘mum,’ ‘dad’, the names of their friends or ‘bed’ and ‘toy’.

Our writing program is differentiated so that all students are supported and feel successful at whatever stage of writing they are at. For example, some students are taking a guess at how to write words using random letters they know, some are writing only the first letter of words (such as ‘h’ for house), some are writing all the sounds they can hear (such as ‘str’ for sister), and a few are aiming for sentences and more accurate spelling.

We also spent time this week reviewing all of the letters and sounds that we have studied so far this school year. For example, the children had to match items to their correct initial sound. During reading lessons we have focused on one-to-one correspondence (one spoken word for each written word) and initial sounds to check words. It really helps if the children point at each word as they say it as this makes their reading more thoughtful and accurate.

In Math we have been exploring the order of numbers within the number system. For example, students have been putting number cards in order from the smallest to the largest. They have been playing a game called ‘Top It’ where the partner who draws the highest number card gets to keep both cards and the player with the most cards at the end is the winner. We have also been practicing how to write the numeral 8. It’s a tricky one and you might like to practice this a little more with your child at home.

Our UOI sessions have focused on how the people we have relationships with can make us feel different things depending on the situation. For example, the children said they sometimes feel sad when their mom doesn’t let them go outside to play and they feel happy when she lets them watch their favorite show. They said how they feel excited when their mums or dads take them somewhere fun.

Click here for some photos of this week.

Enjoy the weekend!

Kind regards,
Ms. Doris