Year 7 celebrated the learning from our first well-being unit and moved into our second unit during our year level half day. To celebrate our first unit, which was focused on building trust in order to have a successful community, students shared action plans and activities with their peers. There was a variety of activities and initiatives presented in creative, thoughtful ways. In the end, the students voted to further develop three initiatives to continue building the sense of community in our year level. To transition into our second well-being unit, focused on developing awareness of oneself, we invited Ms. Nicola Warwick (Secondary School Counsellor) and Ms. Michelle Vogel (Head of Secondary Learning Support) in to share their knowledge and lead the students in some activities. Ms. Nicola introduced students to the idea of the unique nature of the adolescent brain and its importance to human development. Ms. Michelle introduced students to the idea of impulse control and how to recognise one’s impulses before acting on them. Year 7 will continue to explore these concepts during our second well-being unit guided by the statement of inquiry: We can develop our awareness and ability to cope well with change.
The Year 9 had a great time today, doing activities that connected to this year’s LIS theme of ‘Making Better Connections.’ This first part of the morning was spent making progress on their Community Projects. Since September, students have been researching global issues and brainstorming ideas, and now the time has come for them to put their ideas into action. This morning they continued to make excellent progress on their projects that connect to various communities in LIS and Luanda.
The second part of the morning, as a way to strengthen the connections within their homerooms and get to know each other even better, students created personal history collages that they will share with their homerooms. These collages are meant to reflect who they are outside the classroom, by sharing various aspects of their lives such as their opinions, their travels, and their passions. The final part of the Year Level Half Day was a celebration of Year Level birthdays. Friendly team games were played, followed by delicious treats graciously prepared by Year 9 students. In fact, Ociwana, Shahd, Nancy, Zoe and Ariana did a fabulous job of organizing an event that brought everyone closer together.
Year 10 students spent their morning discussing the various and effects of addiction and with the help of the school counsellor explored the physiology of the brain responsible for teenage decision making. The second half of the day focussed on the effects of alcohol use and the dangers of drinking through a video put out by the British Red Cross called “Story of a Night Out.” Students learned about the “bystander” effect and what to do if someone is unconscious. We were taught how to perform “the pushover” and how to put people in “the recovery position” with the assistance of two Emergency First Response trainers
Year 11 students spent the morning rounding off their wellbeing unit on Self Management. Although the emphasis was on developing their affective skills through exploring ways to manage their state of mind, they also had the opportunity to apply this to the real life task of preparing themselves for their upcoming interim Personal Project presentation. In the second part of the morning Year 11 practiced Yoga and took part in a discussion exploring the concept of resilience.
During this half day the Year 12 students engaged in a series of learning opportunities themed around the concept of “failing to succeed.” Students discussed how failure at something allowed them the opportunity to learn and improve. After this activity students broke into their mentor groups and did a miniature research project with the aim of learning how someone successful learned and grew through their failures. Students then engaged in activities centered on building leadership and collaboration skills.
The theme for the Year 13 Year-Level half day was “Balance”. As the Year 13 students move forward into the busiest (and most stressful) time of the Diploma Programme, it is important that students learn to balance the intellectual, physical, and emotional aspects of their lives. During the first session, students developed a study plan for the busy November-February time period and worked on their subject studies, IAs, TOK presentations, or CAS reflections. After break time, students enjoyed their choice of wellbeing and physical activities, including zen tangling, yoga, table tennis, and ultimate frisbee.