Here is the January MS Newsletter

Important Dates

Friday February 3rd - Basketball trip to Prague
February 8th - 10th February - White School (Students not attending stay at home)
Friday 17th - Sunday 26th February - Holiday


First off, we’d like to welcome our new student-teacher from the Netherlands, Cecile Post. Ms. Post will be helping us out over the next several weeks, sharing her expertise and education on a variety of historical subjects. We’re also happy to have a pair of new students joining us from South Korea—Jiwon and Hyeon Kwon. Welcome all!


alex1.jpgThe MYP 1 students have almost finished their unit on Ancient Greece. We just did a lesson on Alexander the Great. Currently the students are preparing their presentations on an aspect of Ancient Greek culture. Not only will they prepare an informative presentation on Greek Gods, music, warfare and children in Ancient Greece, the students will also be preparing a fun activity for their fellow classmates related to their topic as part of their presentation.


The Sevens have been constructing 3D maps of the Silk Road and they look really great! In addition to learning about the geography of the region, students have been studying the cultural diffusion that took place over this ancient trade route for a thousand years—the mixing of religions, languages, science, art, fashion and food. Next month Ms. Post will be introducing us to the Renaissance. Looking forward to it J


MYP 3/4

We’re entering the final leg of our unit on terrorism. During their exploration of how different people and governments have defined terrorism over time, the students created some first-rate presentations on a variety of groups--the Basque separatists ETA, the Japanese Doomsday cult Aum Shinrikiyo, and the global terror network of Al Queda. Here are some samples:


We’re a few weeks into our study of the Middle East and the constraints and opportunities afforded by its physical and cultural geography. The girls began this unit by constructing a large classroom map of the region that they’ve been filling in incrementally with data related to topography, oil reserves, sources of fresh water, population density, political affiliations and religious geography. We’re now discussing the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and the regional tensions that have arisen since the founding of the modern state of Israel.

Language B Polish

MYP 1 foundation
Students are in the middle of „My day” unit. After it they will be able to describe their day using verbs in different person forms, time and frequency adverbs as always, often, never. They also learn how to ask about someone’s schedule. To practice all language skills students read and listen about someone’s everyday routines, tell and write about their routines. On my Wiki students can find some useful links to practice new language skills.

MYP ½ advanced
Students try to answer question what “home” means for others and for them. To reach the target students read and discuss book “Opium w rosole” by Małgorzata Musierowicz. Students also learn how to describe house/room and how to describe it to give the atmosphere to the reader. During classes we disuss our expressions from our homes, our duties and our everyday life.

Students are in the middle of „My day” unit. After it they will be able to describe their day using verbs in different person forms, time and frequency adverbs as always, often, never. They also learn how to ask about someone’s schedule. To practice all language skills students read and listen about someone’s everyday routines, tell and write about their routines. On my Wiki students can find some useful links to practice new language skills. At the end of the unit students will be introduced to using personal preposition in Accusative form which will be more practiced in next unit.

Language B French

MYP 1-2 (foundation)

In the beginners group , we welcomed with a big entusiasm a new student from Korea. We are now taking some time to integrate him in the group and teaching the basis of French which is a good and necessary review for everybody.

We are in the unit “Je suis fan de…” to learn how to present ourselves and someone that we like.

In the more advanced group we are in the presentation unit: we are presenting our family and we are now saying what animal pet we would like to have at home.

MYP 3-4-5:

For the beginners group (foundation) we warmly welcomed a new student from Korea that we are integrating in the group by reviewing the basis and continuing the presentation unit.

For the intermediate group (foundation), we are almost at the end of the unit “Mon employ du temps” and the students are updating their blog with a schedule table and a text about their journey/week.

We started a reviewing period to prepare the students to the A1 Junior exam in Febuary.
For the more advanced group (intermediate) we started the second part on the unit “Mon collège” based more on the behavior, problems and feelings that we can meet at school.

MYP Science:
MYP1: We have finished the unit on the solar system. The students created presentations about an imaginary planet they created. The student compared their planet to facts they learned throughout the unit about our solar system. As in introduction to the Ancient Greek interdisciplinary unit between Science, World Studies and Language Arts, the students researched about different constellation visible in the night sky. The students researched the story behind their constellation and were expected to include a description of all the stars involved.


MYP2: We have finished the unit on systems of the body. The students created presentations about one body system. They were expected to analyze how the systems of the body work together and how technology has improved in the medical field. We have started our energy unit by completing a small research project on different ways electricity is produced.


MYP3/4: We have finished the nuclear chemistry with a debate on whether or not nuclear technology should be used in the world. Students presented their side of this critical global issue to the entire school at the assembly on Wednesday, January 25, 2012. The student body will help decide which students presented a better argument.


MYP5: Students are finishing their unit on photosynthesis and cellular respiration. Students completed a lab using elodea to understand the mechanisms behind photosynthesis. Elodea is an aqua plant that will bubble when exposed to light showing first hand evidence that photosynthesis does in fact produce oxygen. The students will present their final analysis of how cellular respiration and photosynthesis are related.


Language A

Literacy Week

Literacy Week ran from Wednesday 18th –Tuesday 24th and this year the focus was on reading. The theme was Warm up to a good book and there were a number of activities going on.
The Book Fair organised by Mrs Franco went down really well and generated a lot of excitement for books and reading amongst the students.
The middle school students had also been working on their independent book projects and their finished products were displayed in the Theatre room while the book fair was going on. The students did a wonderful job and not only demonstrated a good understanding of the books they had read, but also showed how creative they can be! Here is a snapshot of their work. If you want to see more photos, please go to The WISLA wiki and check out the work of each grade.

Basia.jpgHannia.jpg Minhae.jpg

Unna.jpg Victoria.jpg


The MYP 1 students have now completely finished their autobiographies and these were ‘published’ before literacy week and were also being displayed in the theatre Room. The finished products looked amazing were also extremely entertaining!


We have now started our unit on Greek Mythology. We have begun by brainstorming what we already know and are now in the process of posting questions about the things we want to find out. During the unit we will be examining the structure of myths, finding out more about the gods, goddesses, heroes and monsters that appear in the myths as well as answering the essential questions:
What meanings did myths about gods, goddesses, and heroes have for the ancient Greeks?
What meanings do the Greek myths have for us today?
We will also focus on research skills and presentation skills as the students conduct an investigation into a god or goddess of their choice and present their findings in the form of a speech.


We are coming towards the end of the novel The Giver. The book is set in the future and is about a community that at first appears to be perfect; no war, no fighting, no hunger, no poverty, but as we read, we discover that this ‘utopia’ comes at a price. The reading of the novel has prompted a discussions on a variety of topics including:
  • our vision of the future
  • the possible consequences of technological advancements
  • Freedom of choice versus ‘Sameness’
  • The importance of learning from history and from experiences

The focus of the unit has been on writing skills and the students have been practising writing the ‘perfect’ paragraph with topic sentences, evidence and explanation. At the end of the unit, they will demonstrate what they have learned through essay writing.

MYP 3 & 4
We are still in our Leadership unit and the students in MYP 4 and 5 have been working on speech writing and presentation skills. After discussing what makes a good leader, the students had to think about themselves and decide what leadership skills they possess and what evidence they had to support this. They then had to write a speech that would convince the grade 5 students to choose them as leader. As well as focusing on persuasive speech writing skills, we also worked on our presentation skills. The students gave their speeches on Wednesday and then watched a recording of their presentations and reflected on their performances.
As we near the end of the novel The Lord of the Flies, the students will start collating all the information they have been gathering on their assigned character in preparation for the ‘hot seating’ activity. They will take on the persona of their character and respond to questions from the rest of the class about their thoughts, actions and motivations, in order to demonstrate their understanding of the book.

We are now half way through the play The Crucible which is based on the Salem witch trials of 1692. The students are conducting research into some of the characters that were involved in this episode in history so that they can examine the ways in which Arthur Miller dramatized history and how effective his dramatization is. The reading of the play has prompted interesting discussions on a variety of issues such as the meaning of courage, the effectiveness of the judicial system and the reasons why such a tragic situation could have arisen.


The MYP 1 students are finishing up their unit on exploring numbers. They wrote a test and now are working on their final assignment in which they will demonstrate that they know many groups of numbers (such as square, cube, triangular and Fibonacci numbers, palindromes, prime and composite numbers etc.) and that they can find multiples, factors, squares, cubes and roots of a number. Their task is to create word puzzles using language they have learned in Mathematics.

The MYP 2 students are just finishing the unit on Algebra. They have been learning how to simplify expressions by adding and subtracting like terms and those that involve multiplication and division. They also know how to expand brackets, factorize expressions and locate points and coordinates on a number plane. Now they will start working on their final assignment that will sum up the unit.

The MYP 3&4 students have just finished the unit on Trigonometry. They can calculate the seizes of sides and angles of a right-angled triangle using the trigonometric ratios. For their final assignment they had to find heights of the tall objects like buildings or trees. They could use measuring tape and clinometer – a tool that is used to find the angle of elevation. They successfully demonstrated that they knew how to use trigonometry to solve real life problems.

The MYP 5 finally finished the unit on Algebra, Equations and Inequalitieies. Now they have started learning about Trigonometry. They will not only apply trigonometric ratios to find angles and side lengths of right-angled triangles, but also use the unit circle to find equivalent ratios for obtuse angles.

Middle School Physical Education

All MYP students have been participating in their Volleyball Unit. They have been learning, practicing and performing forearm passing (bumping), setting and underhand serving skills through participation in various activities and games. Yesterday all students participated together in an all-campus bounce volleyball tournament that was a lot of fun for everyone! I'm pleased to announce that "THE BEARS" are the champions of this years tournament. All games were very close and exciting and students displayed just how much they have been improving throughout the unit.


If you would like to learn more about the Volleyball units please go to the following PE wiki links (first one is for MYP 1 and 2 and the second one is for MYP 3-5):


MYP 1 have been finishing up work focusing on the principles and elements of design, evaluating and giving each other feedback on strengths in each others' works. We will continue talking about the principles and elements of design for the rest of the year, right now we are focused on how to create different textures. These will be transformed into our next work, which will be sculptural.

MYP 2 finished up their unit on tessellations and began a shorter project with pastels. You can see some of their work here:

MYP 3/4 has also just finished up their low relief sculptures reflecting Future Self-Portraits. Among the ideas we discussed was how much of a person needed to show in an image to be considered a self-portrait. You can see them here, after the critique, writing down their thoughts after the exchange of ideas.

MYP 5 is continuing their exploration of expressing movement in art. They will have new work to show shortly, they are currently carving their linoleum to print, so watch this space and the ARTatWIS wiki!