Weekly Update #3, 11 September 2020
|Dates for Your Diary|
Upcoming events can be found on the website under School Life → Calendar and are outlined here for easy reference.
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|14 September||8.00am||Parent Fitness classes begin Info HERE||Fitness Studio|
|2.00-4.00pm||ASP Fair||School atrium|
|3.30-4.20pm||Boosters and EAL classes begin||To be announced|
|4.00-5.00pm||Academy Parents Meeting||Sports Hall|
|15 September||8.30am||Foundation Parents Meeting: Introduction to EYFS Curriculum||Secondary Hall|
|16-21 September||All day||ASP online booking||From home|
|17 September||8.15am||UPrep Meeting (open to all interested parents)||Secondary Hall|
|22 September||8.30am||New Thai Parents Meeting: Signing up for ASPs||Secondary Hall|
|26 September||6.00pm||ASP enrolment is visible on Parent Portal||From home|
|28 September||3.30pm||ASPs and Academies begin|
|29 September||8.15am||Year 1 Parents Meeting||Secondary Hall|
|30 September||10.00-11.00am||Reception Parents ‘Stay and Play’ Session||Foundation playground|
|02 October||2.00-4.00pm||Friday Market||Atrium|
Foundation Parent Meeting Invitation
We would like to invite you to attend a presentation on Tuesday 15th September at 08:30-09:30, in the Secondary Hall. Miss Hannah, Deputy Head of Foundation will present an introduction to Foundation School and the Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS). We will cover the framework, expectations, communication, information about how we wish to work with you as parents and offer an opportunity for you to ask any questions you may have. We look forward to seeing you there.
Primary Meeting on 8 September
A big thank you to everyone that attended our Bug Club and Diagnostic Questions meeting on Tuesday. The high number of parents at the meeting today is a fantastic indication of your commitment to working with us to ensure that your child makes the best possible progress, and continues to enjoy and achieve at HeadStart. Please find my presentation below. I have also included a useful document created by Pearson Publishing, the creators of Bug Club, that gives more details on the book bands system of categorisation. This video explains how to set up your child on Diagnostic Questions which was shared with you in the meeting by Mrs Cunningham, and Mr Marx. If you have any issues accessing your child’s online homework, then please do not hesitate to contact your child’s homeroom teacher. To watch a video tutorial, click HERE
|Return of UPrep Sessions|
The world of university applications never stands still so we are delighted to be starting our new UPrep programme on Thursday 17th September at 8.15 am. Having got information from parents and students, we have a new programme that consists of favourite topics from last year and more information about key questions. The programme is available HERE and on the UPrep section of the school website.
In order to make these talks as useful and accessible as possible, we will be alternating our programme between formal scheduled presentations and informal drop-ins in the Cafe. Hopefully, parents can plan their schedule and attend those talks which are most relevant to them and can use the drop-in sessions for those “unplanned” questions or specific queries that pop up.
The first session on Thursday 17th will be talking about how HeadStart supports applications, and we will be introducing university portal service for all parents and students: Unifrog. This is a huge resource free for parents to use and helpful for young people of a variety of ages. Do come along and find out how you can use it and how it might benefit you and your child! If you have any questions about the UPrep programme or would like to book an appointment please do contact Indu Bedi, Deputy Head (Sixth Form & Development) [email protected] or Kru Gem, our University Placement Officer on [email protected] for more details. -Kru Gem
|News From Creative and Performing Arts Department|
Dance Academy Schedule and Sign-Ups
It’s with great excitement that we present the new HeadStart Dance Academy schedule for 2020-2021. See the download below. Last year was quite a strange year and, sadly, the Dance Academy couldn’t end the year on a festive note with their usual magical dance recital. But we can assure you, Miss Fabienne and her team will double their efforts to make this year even more special! Don’t forget to sign-up this coming Monday, 14 September, in the Atrium from 2.00pm until 4.00pm. Some classes are very popular and fill up very quickly so be sure to book your spots!
From a young age music has been a very important part of my life. I have studied piano, clarinet and voice throughout my school career and completed a Bachelors of Music degree at the University of Pretoria in South Africa, completing my final dissertation on Music Education. I moved to London where I taught Primary Music for two years before moving onto the Langley Academy in Slough to become Head of Music for four years. During my time in London I also performed as a session musician in hotels and restaurants and performed and recorded in bands alongside musicians such as Keane and Mumford and Sons. I was also cowriter and music producer for a South African children’s Music Education Programme, Kiddibeat, which gives children from the age of 3 months until 6 years the opportunity to develop life skills through music. In 2009 my husband and I decided to move to Bangkok, Thailand in order to work and travel. It was there that I became Head of Music at Bromsgrove International School for 6 years before moving to Phuket with our two children, Jude and Chloe. I firmly believe that every child deserves the opportunity to experience the Arts, whether through Music, Dance, Drama or Art and Design, as it also helps them improve in other areas such as learning a new language and Math. I see education as holistic, where one subject compliments another.
This year we will offer individual lessons in drums, piano, voice, saxophone, clarinet, guitar, bass guitar and violin. If you wish to sign up for lessons please come to the atrium on Monday, 14 September at 2.00pm, where Mrs Cramp can answer any questions you may have. If you wish to sign up please follow this link: Instrumental Lessons Sign Up. There are also new group instrumental lessons on offer in guitar, ukulele and recorder. See the ASP sign up information.
We are restarting our school orchestra again this year. If you can play any orchestral instrument, or just like making music together with others, then come to the atrium on Monday the 14th of September where you can meet Mr Patrick Graham who will be taking the orchestra on Mondays from 4:30 - 6:00pm. This is a free ASP.
Our very popular LAMDA (London Academy of Music and Dramatic Arts) classes kick off again on the 28th of September. Students from Reception to Y 13 have the opportunity to learn skills in public speaking, Acting (Y3 - 13) and Musical Theatre (Y3 - 13). Examinations take place in Term 2. For more information email Mrs Cramp at [email protected] or see her in the atrium on the 14th of September. This year we welcome back Ms Able and Mr Joel to the programme and we are joined by Mr Patrick Graham. If you wish to sign up for LAMDA classes please complete the sign-up form here: Lamda sign-up.
On December 11th we will entertain you with the story of the Moulin Rouge in Paris. All students from Y5 - 13 are welcome to come for an audition on the 15th and 22nd of September in the Secondary Hall. You don’t need to perform anything, just turn up with loads of energy. This year we are recruiting students who can sing/ act/ dance so don’t feel shy to join if you can’t sing! We always have heaps of fun in the CAPA Academy rehearsals. Come and join our family.
|Start of the School Day|
I work mostly with the Secondary students at HeadStart, overseeing their general progress, personal development and wellbeing as well as dealing with individual pastoral or academic concerns. I’ve been teaching since 1997, which makes me feel very old, but working without students here at HeadStart keeps me young and (I like to think) up to date with current trends! I’ve worked in a variety of countries in Asia - Sri Lanka, China, Nepal and now here in Thailand. I understand that school is full of different challenges for students, some of them personal and some related to learning. I’m here to try and make each child’s learning journey as smooth as possible and to make sure that school is a place where they can really grow into their potential. My door is always open, for students of all ages and their families, and I do invite whoever needs to come and talk to me. I also work across the school with a fantastic Student Support team, and I also have specific responsibility for Child Protection and Safeguarding here at HeadStart. I believe that children and young people can only thrive academically when they feel personally safe and happy. I’m hopeful we can help create a supportive environment that allows all children to succeed. whatever their goals and ambitions.
Please be reminded that the HeadStart school day starts at 8.00am. It is important for the children to be here before 8.00am as it gives them a chance to settle at the start of the day. They communicate with their peers and organise themselves for the day ahead. During morning registration, important messages are passed on by the Homeroom Teachers.
The Foundation gate opens at 07:45. Children are welcomed into the classroom where they can play and socialise with their friends and teachers before their timetabled activities start at 08:30. We recommend that you have settled your child into their class and said your goodbyes by 08:20 to give sufficient time for them to settle by 08:30.
At 8.00am in Primary the day usually starts with a Phonics lesson in Year 1 and 2 or a Guided Reading lesson for the older children. This is valuable learning time for the children. If children arrive late they are missing out on essential teacher input and may struggle to participate in the lesson effectively as a result. On Tuesday, Assembly starts at 8:05am in the Sports Hall.
In Secondary, students are required to have prepared themselves for the lessons ahead at their lockers and be ready to participate in Homeroom activities such as independent reading, house quiz and group discussions on current news topics.
We understand that from time to time there are issues beyond the control of parents and students, such as traffic incidents and extreme weather that will result in late attendance. Please wherever possible inform us so that registers can be updated accordingly. If there are other issues that are causing children to be late for school then please let us know so that we are aware and can offer appropriate support for your child. - G.Caines, H.Brown & J.Hornby
|Emergency Evacuation Procedure|
My name is James Hornby and I am very excited about the new school year ahead, which will be my third year in Thailand working at HeadStart International School. Originally, I am from England and studied Geography at Loughborough University before completing my PGCE at St. Martin’s College in Ambleside, Cumbria and then an MA in Outdoor and Environmental Education Management at Liverpool John Moores University. I taught at schools in Leicester and Yorkshire for 9 years before the opportunity arose to teach at an international school in Cairo, Egypt. During my time living and teaching in Egypt, I explored the desert and also developed a passion for the underwater world through scuba diving. Before relocating to Thailand, my previous teaching post was in Vietnam where I worked at a large international school in Saigon for 9 years. My experience in education has taught me that it is very important to understand that individuals learn in different ways, enjoy different things and achieve differently and at different rates. By providing a safe yet challenging learning environment where the children are not afraid to ‘have a go’ and make mistakes, we can ensure that the children thrive and develop as learners and individuals. Outside of the classroom, apart from spending as much time as possible underwater, I enjoy distance running and rugby, support Liverpool FC and love exploring new places with my wife Nguyen and daughter Jessica - who is incredibly excited about returning to school and starting the new year in Reception.
As many of you are well aware, last week the fire alarm sounded and we had to evacuate to the Astro pitch. Despite it being very early in the year, everyone responded incredibly well and the buildings were cleared quickly and efficiently. In this case, it was a genuine evacuation and not one that was planned/deliberately set off. The sensors had in fact been triggered in the kitchen. Several positives have emerged from this - it is obvious that our alarm system is working well and also that our students and staff are well aware of how to react in an evacuation. These evacuations have allowed us to practise our procedures as well as identify ways in which we can become even more efficient.
I would like to take this opportunity to thank those parents who were on site for the manner in which they have responded to the evacuation and also to remind all parents about a few key points so that everyone is aware of the procedure and what to do if the alarm sounds when they are on site:
• There are a number of Fire Marshals operating as a team during an evacuation - identifiable by their orange vests, working alongside our Maintenance and Security Teams to ensure that the evacuation is as efficient as possible, everyone is safe and any issue is dealt with quickly. We ask that you please follow their instructions at all times and evacuate the buildings quickly and quietly, so clear communication is possible.
• When the alarm sounds nobody should run.
• When the alarm sounds people should immediately stop what they are doing and evacuate the buildings, including the Coffee Shop. If you are in the Coffee Shop please do not wait for food or drink orders as the staff will be clearing and locking the Coffee Shop. As soon as the alarm sounds, please leave the Coffee Shop and go to the Common Assembly Point.
• When the alarm sounds all children in school need to go to the Common Assembly Point on the Astro Pitch, where they should line up in classes or ASP groups, depending upon the time of evacuation, and where we can then assess who is present and then locate anyone who cannot be accounted for.
• When the alarm sounds parents need to go to the Common Assembly Point and assemble in the area at the ramp end of the Astro pitch. Please do not stop directly at the bottom of the ramp as this blocks the evacuation route and slows people down. Alternatively, parents may immediately leave the school, while also following any instructions about safe routes. Fire Marshals will advise if a particular route is blocked.
• Once we have further information about the cause of the evacuation and safe areas the Chief Fire Marshal will communicate and advise about the next step(s).
|Sports Department News|
Girls Football Team Tryouts
Any girls from Year 5-13 are invited to attend football team tryouts on the 18th and 23rd of September. Registration starts at 3.45 and tryouts start at 4.00pm. Please try and attend both tryout sessions.
U9 Boys and Girls Football
The Under 9 Boys and Girls Football programme will now take place during the 3.30-4.20pm slot. Training will be taken very seriously by our New Head Coach, Stef Frost, alongside his new assistant Coach Blaine Mckenna. There will be fixtures and tournaments organised, such as inter-squad games, PISAC Development League and Tournaments. Please find details of all the ASP opportunities the Under 9 boys and all the girls have to get involved in our football programme.
|Monday||Year 1-3 Football for boys and girls|
|Tuesday||Year 4-6 Football for boys and girls|
|Wednesday||Girls only Football (Year 5-13)|
|Thursday||Year 4-6 Football for boys and girls|
|Friday||Girls only Football (Year 5-13)|
Introducing our 2020-2021 Head Boy, Head Girl and their Deputies!
“This year I am looking forward to being a key part of student leadership at HeadStart being the Head Girl for 2020-2021. I’ve had an amazing first year as Deputy Head Girl and truly feel I’m prepared for the year ahead with all the experience I’ve gained. I’m excited to work with a new team of student leadership and make sure that we continue to create a positive and caring atmosphere around the school”. -Lucy Mester, Head Girl
“Taking on the role of Deputy Head Boy last year has allowed me to gain many different essential skills, such as public speaking, communication and organising. I feel truly grateful to be able to contribute with the leadership team as the role of Head Boy this year and am also planning to work harder to achieve success for both myself and for the Headstart community. This year, there are many things we have planned that must be done, so I would like to encourage more students to express their opinions and suggest positive changes to the school. I hope everyone has had a great start to the year!” -Hyunseung Lee, Head Boy
“Hello, My name is Nutcha and I am currently studying in Year 12. I have been in HeadStart my whole life and I’m very honoured to take on the role of Deputy Head Girl. HeadStart is my second home where my most precious memories are made, and I would like to strengthen that positive atmosphere where all students will be able to create such cherishable memories like mine. I promise to work hard to become a model student and encourage others to work hard and enjoy school life”. Nutcha Phaisamran, Deputy Head Girl
“Hello, I’m Calvin and I’m currently in Year 12. I am Dutch/ American and HeadStart’s 2020-2021 Deputy Head Boy. I’ve been at HeadStart for over 15 years and have watched the school grow from a small homeschool for a handful of students to what it is today. I’m excited to take on this role to work with students, teachers and parents around the school to create a fun and productive learning environment. I hope I can leave HeadStart knowing I made positive contributions to the community”. -Calvin Van Der Laan, Deputy Head Boy
On Friday we celebrated R U OK? Day here at HeadStart. R U OK? are an organisation that inspire and empower everyone to meaningfully connect with the people around them and start a conversation with those who might be struggling. All week students in Secondary have been connecting with their classmates by performing ‘Random Acts of Kindness’. Then today we have been thinking positively by remembering the things and people we are grateful for on our ‘Gratitude Your Attitude’ board in the Atrium. In our Assembly, we learned a bit more about those people at school who are especially there for students by introducing the Student Support Team and our Head Boys and Girls. Ms Bedi then reminded everyone of the importance of having empathy with everyone around us. Lastly, we introduced the wider student leadership team by announcing our Prefects and Student Council Representatives - all of whom are there to make our lives here at school as positive as it can be. Hopefully, by the end of the day, we had all thought about how we can reach out and be kind to others, and also who can help us if we need. Ms Gemma Caines, Deputy Head of Secondary
This week in Early Years, we have been using our senses to explore a variety of learning. During our messy play, we poured and scooped rice and oats; through this children had the opportunity to develop mathematical terminology (more, less, lots of, full, empty, scoop, pour) and mathematical concepts; some children learnt that if there was too much rice, it would overflow! (and found this very funny when there was a classroom floor filled with rice!) We made marks in minty shaving foam and we were captivated by gloop; the children enjoyed the sensory experience! Messy play is a great way to develop fine motor skills, self-awareness, hand-eye coordination and perseverance!
Throughout the week, Early Years have been reading the story of ‘The Gingerbread Man’, the children loved repeating the words “run, run as fast as you can, you can’t catch me I’m the gingerbread man!” To capture their imagination we baked Gingerbread men together and the children enjoyed them as an afternoon snack. Baking with children is a great way to learn measurements, turn-taking, following instructions, number recognition and language development. We have had a lovely week and we are super excited for another wonderful week ahead! - Ms Keeley and Ms Suzi
In Year 2 this week we have been learning about continents and oceans. We had so much fun labelling them and then using globes and maps to locate them on our own ‘Balloon Globe’. Amazingly, none of them have popped yet! Pop into a Year 2 classroom to see them on display! -Ms Donna Wintersgill
This week Year 7 Blue made posters to show their understanding of characterisation in Roald Dahl’s short story ‘The Landlady’. Their transition to secondary is going smoothly! - Ms Kelly Tuppen
Hi, my name is Rich and although I have been at HeadStart since 2015 as a History teacher, this will be my first year as Head of a brand new Humanities faculty. Previously, I was an English and History teacher at Bromsgrove International School in Bangkok. My experience as an English and History teacher in international schools, along with a strong EAL background, has given me the tools to effectively teach students of differing abilities from all over the world. I am also in a position to empathise with international school students, having been one myself (I spent my first 12 years in Singapore, Thailand, Hong Kong and Taiwan). As a History teacher, I will ensure that students not only access the History curriculum, but do so in a lively, engaged classroom that inspires a love of history while developing the knowledge, skills and concepts needed to make sense of the world. Every student has a higher potential that must be unlocked, nurtured and encouraged continually. I do this by creating an active and engaged classroom culture where formative assessment is the nexus of their learning. Involving students in the learning process and nurturing a mind-set approach to their learning not only manifests excellent progress but, more importantly, creates happy and confident learners for life. Apart from teaching, other passions include music (listening and composing), travel, quoting Alan Partridge and being a consistently disappointed Tottenham Hotspur fan. To be able to live near the coast and teach a subject I’m so passionate about is fantastic. My wife and I are enjoying teaching and living in Phuket, especially because the lifestyle here gives our two children (also at HeadStart) an opportunity to grow up in the great outdoors.
Secondary History Update
We’ve been busy in our History lessons with all year groups and it’s great to see the students returning to ‘normal’!
Below is a map of the world in 1700 that the Year 8s have populated with where they believe different ‘products’ came from, as we consider how and why the early modern world was connected. This is leading up to the study of the Atlantic Slave Trade.
Year 11 History students were given the task of debating who was to blame for The Cold War. On the opinion chart below, their task was to consider the message of each political cartoon which helped them to answer the question: “What was the fundamental aim of The Marshall Plan?”.
Below you can see our AS Level History students explaining to each other what had changed in the United Kingdom during the Industrial Revolution. This is leading up to a future debate on the benefits and negatives of the revolution.
An example of collaboration in Miss Caine’s A Level History class as they explore the structuralism and intentionalism of the Nazi state, ultimately leading up to their main source based exam on the Holocaust.
Year 9 students in the ‘Thai as a Second Language’ class have been learning grammar. This week we have finished a lesson on the ‘e’ vowel (สระเอ). - By Kru Yui
The best way to learn something is to teach it! In English AS this week we used the Reciprocal Teaching method whereby students become an expert on something, a text in this context, and coached their peers on what made it effective. This is a well-known strategy, known to support students in becoming more self-directed, increase academic gains and improve quality of social interactions. Students were also all learning to think like ‘Examiners’ as the marked and graded sample answers. - Ms Indu Bedi, Head of Sixth Form
As a part of the A Level curriculum, students are required to visit galleries, studios and contact artists. On Tuesday of this week, we had a very productive gallery visit and had the exciting opportunity to interview an artist. A very successful field trip! -Ms Nicole Ryan
A Level English Update
Students in Year 13 have received feedback on their first VIMA (milestone assessment) essay written as a response to Geoffrey Chaucer’s The Knight’s Tale. As mentioned in a previous update, assessments look a little different this year in A Level English, with students doing all their assessed work in timed conditions and receiving two forms of feedback from their teachers- one personalised and focused on their own responses and one content-driven and for the whole class, which acts as a model to inform future essays. Here is what the students said:
Ben Caspi: I found the personal feedback on specific assessment objectives useful as it shows us where we need to improve and how.
Filippo Gramaglia: The VIMAs are certainly going to help, especially with time management and writing more during less time.
Aleksandra Gordziekskaya: The timing is nice because it allows us to improve speed of writing for the time conditioned provided in the exam. The feedback is effective, as it allows you to see what you could improve on and what are your areas of strength
Lucy Mester: I think the VIMA timed approach was a good idea as I think all of us need to work on our time management skills. The whole class feedback was fine, I think it is good to get a general sense on what we need to work on as well as pushing us to develop a more sophisticated approach. The personal feedback is effective and will help me improve on things I specifically need to improve on. Although, I wouldn’t mind it only being negatives cause I don’t want pity. I want to know what I have to work on and how to get top marks. I feel like if I reflect on the VIMAs before the next VIMA and even now and learn what needs to be changed it will produce a good outcome for the results! :))
|Around the Island Promotions|