Exploring What Matters | Action for Happiness Course

Starting on September 26th there will be an opportunity to join with fellow LIS parent community members to participate in this interesting and innovative 8 week course, developed by Action for Happiness, and delivered by secondary counsellor Nicola Warwick.

 The course aims to develop participants’ understanding of what makes us happier as individuals, how we can improve our relationships, and what we can do to make our communities more caring places. It is evidence-based; and scientific research into wellbeing forms the foundation of the course. Information is shared through TED-style videos and from experts in relevant fields, along with suggestions for further personal learning. The course places an emphasis on group conversation and individual reflection, and each week there is an opportunity to set a personal goal related to the week’s content. 

When: 13:00 – 15:00 Every Tuesday from 26th of September until 21st of November (no session during the October break)

Where: ELC meeting room

Cost: $120 (a charitable donation made directly to Action for Happiness)

 “Exploring What Matters” is offered by Action for Happiness; a movement of people committed to building a happier and more caring society. You can find out more about the course (including content and structure) and the 10 keys to happier living, from their website.

 To register go online to:  https://afh-luanda-26-sep.eventbrite.co.uk/

 There will be a maximum number of 28 participants for this group. 

 Please feel free to contact Nicola Warwick nwarwick@lisluanda.com for further information. 

Year Level Half Day – 1 February

Time was spent by the year 7 students gaining greater understanding of their body and the changes that are happening to it as they move through puberty. There was strong focus and respectful learning and a bit of embarrassment too. During the 2nd part of the morning a few of last year’s Yr students spoke about some of the student led community building activities they initiated last year. This sparked great interest in a number of similar activities which led to some preliminary planning. These activities include a year level camp, fun night sports tournaments, Yr 6 to Yr 7 transition activities and some team video game tournaments. Over the coming months the Yr 7 students will test their commitment and planning skills to turn their ideas into reality.

Year 8 continued with our well-being curriculum on “Self”, which focuses on developing the ATL skill of self-management. The day started with a reflection of the Semester One reports, followed by a discussion on responsible use of technology and electronic devices in school. As a year group, we aimed to have an iPad-free morning; students put their iPads away and spent the morning interacting with one another and trying out different physical activities instead. They played an energetic and full-filled session of Ultimate Frisbee. Facilitated by the homeroom teachers, they also engaged in different stress-reduction activities such as listening to relaxing music, playing Scattergories and practicing Laughter YogaThereafter, 8.1 led and generously hosted our third year level birthday celebration, the most successful thus far, for students and teachers born in the month of January, February and March.

The day may have started with rain, but the Year 9 students set off on their hike with lots of good cheer. To start off their preparation for their trip to South Africa, the Year 9’s hiked for several kilometers near the Kwanza river. In addition to building on their teamwork skills, students had a chance to explore the beautiful Angolan countryside. Several wilderness scenarios were given to student groups for discussion on how to resolve possible situations as they walked, talked and had a picnic along the trail. It was hot, but the students positive attitude and perseverance kept things cool and calm. All in all, it was a successful and hike and a great way to get us thinking about South Africa.

Our Year 10 students spent their half-day continuing their Wellbeing unit on Healthy Choices. With support from the school counsellors students engaged with discussions and activities surrounding healthy relationships, safe sex, risky behaviour, and consent. Students concluded their half-day with role-play activities and discussions surrounding dealing with challenging situations. 


Year 11 spent the morning enquiring into one of five Global Issues: Race relations, Immigration, Global Warming, Gender Equality and Wealth Gap. Their goal is to produce a video explainer focussing on one aspect of their chosen issue which will be shared with the LIS community. They finished off their morning with a Tent Challenge! That is, making sure they could put up and take down their tent efficiently in preparation for their overnight Silver Award training trip next Friday. All of them managed this successfully!

Year 12 students had the opportunity to engage in a very meaningful and appropriate workshop on time management led by an outside expert, Mr Mustaque Ahmed. In this workshop students learned techniques in order to improve their ability to function more effectively when time is limited and many deadlines need to be met. This is a crucial skill for achieving success not just in the Diploma but life in general. The students then had a check-in session with their mentors where they worked on CAS and Extended Essay.

The year 13 students where introduced to the IB exam regulations and conduct by Ms Nicole. They then had 2 sessions where they prepared for their mock exams which start next Wednesday. In these sessions study groups were formed were peer teaching and revision took place, students were also given the opportunity to study individually and encouraged to use their time productively.

Professional learning at LIS: Character Counts!

Aristotle is renowned to have said, educating the mind without educating the heart is no education at all, and in recent years educators around the world have become interested in the VIA classification of character strengths. (www.viacharacter.org )  A comprehensive list of traits that is associated with positive character in all cultures has been identified through research.  This is a very exciting prospect for a school as international and as multicultural as LIS.

Primary and secondary teachers have joined together to form a professional learning group called Well-being Across Borders (WAB) to investigate the potential of integrating the character strengths into the life of the school.   Last week they completed the first of three webinars with Mark Linkins of the Mayerson Academy (http://www.mayersonacademy.org ) The webinar was called Maximizing Teachers’ Character Strengths in the Classroom and will enable them to fully understand and maximize their own character strengths before working with their students.