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HeadStart Weekly Update #19, 1 February, 2019

Dates for Your Diary

Upcoming events can be found on the calendar on the website School Life → Calendar but we have outlined upcoming events here for easy reference. For daily updates and news follow the HeadStart Facebook Page

Date Time Event Location
05 February All day Chinese New Year Activities & Dress Up In school
06 February 3:30pm Year 11 Parent Teacher Conferences Sports Hall
07 February 8:15am U-Prep Talk: Your Child’s 5 Year Plan Secondary Hall
08 February 8:30am Around the World Foundation-Y2 Performance Sports Hall
14 February All day Foundation (am) Years 1-2 (pm) Sports Day Sports Facilities
15 February All day Year 3-6 (am) Year 7-11 (pm) Sports Day Sports Facilities

U-Prep Talk News

In case you were not able to make it to last week’s U-Prep talk we have included meeting notes for your perusal below. The next meeting will be on Thursday, 7th February in the Secondary Hall and will be on the topic of Your Child’s 5 Year Plan. It will cover a general outline of what families can be doing to prepare for university applications and is designed for parents with younger children in Years 6-9 but can be interesting for parents with older and younger children.

LINE App for Thai Parents

Introducing HeadStart’s official LINE page designed to keep Thai speakers up to date with school notices. Simply look for ‘HeadStart’ and click add.

ยินดีต้อนรับสู่ LINE แอพพลิเคชั่นของโรงเรียนนานาชาติเฮดสตาร์ท ช่องทางที่จะเพิ่มการติดต่อสื่อสารระหว่างโรงเรียนและผู้ปกครองไทยให้ใกล้ชิดและง่ายดายมากยิ่งขึ้น

ขอแจ้งให้ทราบว่า LINE แอพพลิเคชั่นนี้ มีวัตถุประสงค์เพื่อประชาสัมพันธ์ข่าวสารต่างๆเป็นภาคภาษาไทยเท่านั้น

หากท่านมีคำถามหรือข้อร้องเรียนเกี่ยวกับโรงเรียน และการเรียนการสอน ขอให้ติดต่อกับทางโรงเรียนผ่านทางอีเมลหรือทำนัดหมายได้ที่ห้องธุรการ

โทร 076612876 อีเมล [email protected]

HeadStart Bi-Weekly Newsletter

In an effort to keep Thai parents up to date we have created a bi-weekly newsletter with condensed news and information and current events. The hard copies are handed out in the Tuesday parent meetings. A digital copy of the latest update can be found on the download below.

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Foundation and Year 1-2 Production - Around the World

As you are aware the children have been working very hard in preparing their performances for our Foundation and Year 1 and 2 production of Around the World. Each class has chosen a country to represent through song and dance.

On the 8th of February, next Friday, please send your child to school in their usual school uniform. Children will get changed in their homerooms. After the show, parents will have a short time to take photos of their children in the Sports Hall after which pupils will return to Homerooms.

Below is a run through of the events. We are asking that parents please stay in the Hall for the full performance and to not collect your child in the hall after the show. We have allowed for a bit of time after each show for you to take photographs after which your child will return to their homerooms to resume lessons.

Foundation Show

8:40 - Sports Hall doors open

8:50 - Foundation children will come down to the hall ready for their performance

8:55 - All parents must please be seated.

9:00 - Performance starts

9.40- Children return to Homerooms to resume lessons

Key Stage 1 Show

9:45 - Doors open for Year 1 and 2 parents

9:55 - Parents must be seated

9:55 - Year 1 and 2 children come down to the Sports Hall

10:00 - Year 1 and 2 show starts

10.40- Children return to Homerooms to resume lessons

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Chinese New Year 5 February

Inviting all students, staff and parents to come to school dressed in red, gold or Chinese themed clothing on the 5th of February. We will have some activities in school to celebrate the Lunar new year that is a highlight in many countries in Asia.

Upcoming Parent Committee Meeting

The term 2 Parent Committee meeting has been scheduled for Thursday, February 28th 2019. Please email any points that you would like to have discussed to [email protected] prior to the meeting. For a full explanation of the roles and responsibilities of the Parent Committee please visit the tab on the website or click HERE

Year 11 Parent Teacher Conference on 6 February

ou are invited to a Parent Teacher Conference on Wednesday 6th February. Parents and students are both invited to attend to receive information about the courses on offer and procedures for application to the HeadStart Sixth-Form. All guests will need to arrive at 3.30pm and be seated promptly in the Drama Studio on the 4th Floor.

A presentation regarding the HeadStart Sixth-Form will be given by Mrs. Caines followed by the chance to speak to subject teachers. There is an application process which will be explained during this meeting. Students are expected to select up to five subjects that they wish to study at AS Level in Year 12 and will have the opportunity later on this term to discuss individually the subjects they have chosen and how they meet the needs of their future studies and career path.

This will be followed by appointments to talk to teachers about the recent Year 11 Mock Examinations and their academic progress as they approach their IGCSE examinations. This is an important opportunity for students and parents to talk through what needs to be done over the next few months to maximise their academic performance. In order to book appointments with teachers, please follow the ‘Book Parents Evening’ link in the Parent Portal.

IGCSEs, A Level Options choices and Sixth Form are all an important stage in your child’s education. It is vital that students and parents attend in order to find out valuable information that will inform significant decision making.

Blood Donations

We want to express gratitude to the people who took time out of their busy schedules to donate blood last Friday. The 48 blood donors which included staff, parents and some of the Year 13 students gave a total of 21,600 CC (450 CC per 1 donor). Did you know that one donation can potentially save up to 3 lives? We hope to make blood donations a regular occurrence at school and will keep you updated regarding the next event!

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Nicholas Carter

Director of Sport
[email protected]

My name is Nick Carter and I am from Kent, in the UK. I came to Thailand in 2015, after 6 years of living and teaching P.E. in Stockholm, Sweden (where it snows for six months of the year!). So, it is fair to say that I was ready for a completely different climate change, as well as cultural change. My sporting background is very diverse. I grew up with a passion for playing football but, later, in my teens, I discovered baseball. I made my debut for the Great Britain national baseball squad at the age of 18 and played with the squad for the next 14 years. I also trained as a professional contemporary dancer and toured nationally and internationally for 7 years in numerous dance companies. Although I have many other sporting interests, I want to make it clear that P.E. teachers are not just whistle blowing, basketball bouncing individuals, as I released my first fictional novel (in June, 2015). However, participating in sport, physical activity, and leading a healthy lifestyle are very important to me, and I’ve enjoyed imparting my knowledge in teaching and coaching environments for over 20 years. I am delighted to be HeadStart’s Director of Sport and my fundamental aims are for our students to continue to experience a really diverse range of physical activities, all the while having loads of fun through being active. For example, HeadStart pupils will participate in the following sports activities in either curriculum time or in our fantastic After School Sports programme: Basketball, Netball, Football, Rugby, Athletics, Swimming, Badminton, Table Tennis, Volleyball, Softball, Rounders, Yoga, Dance, and Gymnastic activities (amongst others). If you have any questions, you can email me at – [email protected]

Sports Department News

Basketball News

This week HeadStart hosted our U15 boys and U17 girls participated in our Basketball Invitational Cup against Phuket Wittaya, Thaihua and Kathu Wittaya schools. The Under U15 Boys Competition was held on Wednesday and the 17 Girls Competition on the Thursday.

The boys participated in their first competitive matches, since forming the team this year. Needless to say, the boys found it very challenging against some very tough Thai opposition. The boys played well, and understand better how to improve for the future. Their win loss record was 1 Win 2 Losses and the eventual winners were Phuket Wittaya School.

The girls experienced much greater success. They have been training hard over the entire academic year (as well as last year) and their experience shone through, finishing the tournament as winners with a 3-0 win/loss record. Well done girls!

What’s Coming Up? Sports Days!

It’s time to start getting ready for our Athletics Sports days. Here’s some information (more detail to follow next week)

  • Pre-School Sports Day - Thursday, February 14th from 08.30-09.15 in the sports hall.
  • Early Years & Reception Sports Day - Thursday, February 14th from 08.30-10.00 on the football pitch.
  • Year 1 & 2 Sports Day - Thursday, February 14th from 13.00-15.10 on the football pitch.
  • Year 3-6 Sports Day - Friday, February 15th from 08.10-11.45am on the football pitch.
  • Year 7-13 Sports Day - Friday, February 15th from 12.10-15.20pm on the football pitch.

On the day the students should wear their House shirt, PE shorts, sports shoes, a hat and/or sunblock, and bring their water bottles. Parents are welcome to come and watch also.

Maths Faculty Week

What a successful week we have had celebrating Mathematics and Commerce week.

Determined students wandering the school building seeking maths scavenger hunt answers has been a common occurrence over the last few days. The intensity and focus witnessed during the before school sessions of the cup staking activity has been amazing! The Pi memory competition once again amazed onlookers (students and staff alike). Tuesday lunch involved using forks and spoons as digital musical instruments through the magic of the Makey Makey. What at first glance appears to be a simple circuit board has the ability to turn inanimate objects into anything from a piano to the buttons for a computer game. The business logo challenge was exactly as the title describes, very challenging. With both teachers and students sharing answers, it was not uncommon to hear the phrase “what is a Candy Crush?” being uttered. Some truly amazing mathematicians, engineers and inventors have shone this week and will be awarded for their skills during this Friday’s assembly.

Saturday Thai Culture Club Group 1

The Early Years to Year 1 students were excited to participate in the first Saturday Thai Culture Club of 2019! This time we learned about Thai traditional games such as “Mon Son Pha” and “Ngu Gin Hang”. We also made a Thai traditional toy called “Pong Paeng” which is a rattle toy. By Kru Dia

Saturday Thai Culture Club Group 2

Year 2-6 students were fascinated by the fragrance of Thai potpourri. They learnt how to make a potpourri pouch and how to differentiate the fragrances of each ingredient by using a sense of smell.

Foundation Department News

The children have enjoyed learning all about ‘People who help us’ this week. They have enjoyed dressing up, putting out fires and when I had an accident all the Preschool Doctors came to help me. We finished our topic with a very special visit from Pilot Zak. He read a story about being a pilot to the children, showed us pictures of his plane and even let everyone try on his hat. Thank you very much for coming to see us Pilot Zak! By Ms Danielle

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Maths Week is already a bit hit with the children in Early Years Blue! Today we were introduced to Numicon which is a fantastic resource to help children gain a deeper understanding of numbers and their patterns. Numicon uses a multi-sensory approach so children learn about number ideas through seeing and feeling how Numicon Patterns connect with each other. As adults we can quickly make connections between Numicon Shapes and number ideas because we already understand numbers. However these connections are not obvious to children and it is really important to give them time to make their own discoveries. The children have been having lots of fun exploring the different Numicon provisions in our classroom.

We hope that as our children meet Numicon in play in different areas of the classroom, they will get to know the colours, sizes and patterns of the Numicon Shapes and gradually start to make connections with numbers and numerals. By Ms Holly Strawbridge

Early Years have had a fantastic week, enjoying a bumper packed week full of numbers and shapes to celebrate and join in with our whole school Math’s Week. A very big well done to Natalie, Sugar, Noah and Titan for working extremely hard and earning this week’s Star of The Week award.

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We have finished the last if our fairy tales theme this week. We learnt about Cinderella and made our own prince and princess crowns, jewellery necklaces and did many different focused writing activities. We even starting subtraction on our own! The teachers are very proud of how well the children are working and trying their best in all our activities.By Ms Candice Smithie

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Primary Department News

In Year 4, we have been looking at States of Matter. First of all, we sorted a range of objects and materials before looking at what is a ‘solid’, a ‘liquid’ and a ‘gas’ in more scientific terms. In our first investigation, we investigated gases, trying to find which soda was the fizziest. Using chocolate, we then investigated the processes of melting and freezing. We saw these processes again the following week, along with the processes of evaporation and condensation when we used water in its three states: as a solid (ice), as a liquid (water), and as a gas (water vapour). More recently, we focused on the process of evaporation and investigated the effect of heat on the speed of evaporating. By Ms Jen Rapkins

Secondary Department News

University Admissions in Progress

University admission continues throughout the year for Year 13, and there is always something to celebrate. Particular congratulations this week to Natalie, Nikol and Denalyn. Natalie has achieved a clean sweep and received 5 offers to study Psychology, including from University College London, ranked 10th in the world. Nikol’s stand out application has won her an offer to study Law (one of the world’s most competitive courses) from Manchester University (the UK’s most popular university destination). Finally, we were delighted to hear Denalyn has been given a place to study English Literature at Whitworth University in the USA, alongside a well deserved $30,000 scholarship. Well done to all of them! With applications to the Netherlands and Canada submitted and awaiting decision, we hope to share more good news in the weeks to come.

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Recently, the Year 7 English students have been reading Roald Dahl’s short stories and creating absurd and mysterious conversations between quite unusual characters. Taking inspiration from the work of Roald Dahl, as well as Harold Pinter and Stanley Kubrick, students created written dialogues filled with clipped speech, awkward pauses, repetition and rambling monologues. To bring this written work to life, the Year 7 students rehearsed and performed their conversations to the class, evoking many quizzical expressions of confusion, awkward atmospheres and laugh out loud moments. By Mr Thomas Webb

This half term we have been learning some paper crafts in active learning. We started with origami and many of us are now trying quilling. It’s a very relaxing and creative way to start the day. Look out for our finished projects after the half term break. By Ms Alex Holmes

Miss Leamon’s Year 9 class have been learning all about the energy changes during chemical reactions focusing on endothermic and exothermic reactions. Using their knowledge and practical skills they have been doing lots of experiments to investigate which reactions would be most suitable for making a self heating can or an emergency ice pack. They all did fantastic in choosing the correct chemical reactions and this was a great demonstration of their ability to apply their knowledge to real life scenarios and inventions.

Key Stage 3 Library Sessions

Our KS3 classes have been enjoying their library lessons once a week to help nurture a passion for reading for pleasure. Adolescents entering the adult world in the 21st century will read and write more than at any other time in human history. They will need advanced levels of literacy to perform their jobs, run their households, act as citizens, and conduct their personal lives. This is what some of the students in Year 8 English 2 are reading in their library lessons:

‘I am currently reading ‘Formula 1: The Definitive Visual Guide’. I like this non fiction book as I have always been a huge fan F1’ - Buraset Thinkonyao

‘I’m currently reading ‘Awkward’ written by Svetlana Chmakova. I am enjoying this graphic novel as it is rather funny and very much like the other novels I have read’ - Jasmine Hull

‘I’m reading ‘Get Well Soon’ written by Julie Halpern. I like this book because it shows the variety of different emotions people go through’ - Yeeping Chatho

‘I am reading a book called ‘Julia Jones Diary’ written by Katrina Kahler. I am enjoying this novel because it is about her life being at school which is similar to mine’ - Nae Nae Poudyel

‘I’m currently reading ‘A Room Full of Chocolate’ written by Jane Elson. It is a family book reflecting modern society’ - Noey Pimnara Phongworkasak.

IGCSE Drama students have just finished recording their group devised performance. This element of coursework is one of the most difficult and rewarding as it empowers students to create their own work. Students have been preparing this piece of work since November through a series of acting workshops and research on their theme domestic violence and an unacceptable ‘boys will be boys’ attitude continually seen and excused in society. Their aim was to educate the audience through verbatim theatre and epic theatre techniques that this attitude is no longer acceptable and victim’s voices need to be heard.

The devising process deeps students’ collaborative skills and allows them to experience being an actor, director, writer, dramaturg and creative artist. It gives them a sense of ownership of the work that performers just don’t have when performing in someone else’s writing. By Ms Hayley Milner

Last week Y10 took a trip into Phuket Town to complete observational drawings and work on their photography skills for their new project; Architecture. Pupils completed a series of drawings using the arm and pencil measuring techniques they learnt last term. We began sketching the Blue Elephant building and then walked down Thalang road in order to obtain primary resource studies of the traditional buildings. Overall a great trip out ending with some fantastic outcomes. Well done Y10! By Ms Samantha Gill

Year 11 English have been reflecting on their recent English mock examinations, identifying where they achieved success and what they need to do in order to make further progress. This week they worked in small groups and annotated model responses which allowed them to apply the success criteria for each question type. Well done Year 11! By Mr Paice

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David Pollicutt

Head of English
[email protected]

My name is David and I joined HeadStart International School in 2018. I am from the UK and grew up in the large port city of Bristol. I studied English Literature at the University of East Anglia, and trained to teach at The Institute of Education in The University of London. I taught in East London for four years, before moving to teach for eight years as Head of English in Viet Nam and China. I am a firm believer in developing students to be natural enquirers, following the Sir Ken Robinson model of best preparing students to use transferable skills for the shifting landscapes of their futures. I seek to encourage an epistemological approach in my lessons, urging students to evaluate the efficacy of the information they consume and the validity of interpretations. I am passionate about literature and will often be chortling at David Lodge’s tragicomedy or swooning at Ian Mcewan’s literary sleight of hand. Outside of the classroom I am a keen student of Philosophy, Politics and Film. I am a particular fan of the intellect and charisma exuded by Jordan Peterson, Sam Harris and the late and much missed Christopher Hitchens. I have a terminal case of devotion to Tottenham Hostpsur Football Club; it teaches me patience and humility.

Year 13 English Literature

From his deathbed in Act II of Richard II, John of Gaunt extols the virtue of his beloved country in a well-known and patriotically stirring speech to the Duke of York:

This royal throne of kings, this sceptred isle,

This earth of majesty, this seat of Mars,

This other Eden, demi-paradise,

This fortress built by Nature for her self

Against infection and the hand of war,

This happy breed of men, this little world,

This precious stone set in a silver sea

Which serves it in the office of a wall

Or as a moat defensive to a house,

Against the envy of less happier lands,

This blessed plot, this earth, this realm, this England,

Of course, only a few students at HeadStart are English, but that but their affinities to their countries of origin are every bit as passionate as the Duke of Lancaster’s.

Year 13 Literature students were challenged to take up this flag-waving patriotism by producing their own verses in the same metre used by Shakespeare, iambic pentameter, about their own lands.

Denalyn Kwok (Malaysia)

For Malaysians it is said to be true,

Our love for food running through history

Has been and will be there for old and new.

The fame of our food tis no mystery,

Exotic flavours and spices have we.

Plenteous mee, rice and curries are rich,

Laksa and Satay are all there for thee,

But in strange places, like next to a ditch.

Humble is a Hokker stall’s location,

Cooking world known food with Michelin stars.

Thou doth wait in clear anticipation,

Amidst penning a food lover’s memoirs.

Sasha Miftakhova (Ukraine)

One very charming land- Ukraine,

You can travel anyplace by train.

Crowds in a subway drive me insane,

Lack of oxygen gives me migraines.

But I treasure all the goods

That are hidden in the woods

All this love I can’t contain

For my dear land Ukraine.

Nikol Smirnovaite (Lithuania)

Crystalline and clear doth the lake lay still

Reflecting the Lithuanian sky

Patches of flowers do bloom for thine thrill

As the Snow and ice blinds ones naked eye

Development and growth occurred so fast

Sun shining reflecting the green

Castles and churches doth tell of our past

Rainy days so beautiful to be seen

Ambers glow and shine from within our ground

Existence seems simple like summer’s Eve

Dig down in our soil they can be found

Lithuania thou doth not want leave

Maeva Lubrani France) ‘La Fierté du Roi’

Looketh down below, Frenchmen do I see

Here from the Eiffel tower standing tall

Our flag blowing in the wind, people free

Blue, white, red- tis strength uniting us all

Fois gras on my platter, escargot too

Both so rich, such delicacies of fame

We have cheese and wine, so fine not for few

Fit for the king and queen and duke and dame

As sun meets horizon, the tower shines

Upon Paris- our nation so divine.

Elin Lindgren (Sweden) En Viking’s Sanning

The bow of mine boat doth tame the oceans,

Plant our flag to claim it ours in the soil.

We do what we must making no notions

So hard we have worked, so hard do we toil.

With the blade of my sword I will defend

Gather fellow Swedes and fight till the end.

One man’s burden is another man’s bread,

No matter thy life’s loss nor thy blood shed.

Scandinavians shalt proudly prevail,

For this is merely a Viking’s true tale.

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