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Chaofah Weekly1 year ago

Weekly Update #14, 2 December 2022

Upcoming events can be found on the website under School Life → Calendar and are outlined here for easy reference. If you have questions or require further assistance please email [email protected]

Date Time Event Location
05 December   School Closed for Father’s Day  
06 December 8.15am Mandarin Speaking Parents Meeting Secondary Hall
08 December 8.15am UPrep Drop in & Future Ready Workshops Nakita’s Coffee Shop
09 December   Last day for all ASPs & Academies  
13 December 8.15am Parents meeting: Mock Exams IGCSE and Onward Plans Secondary Hall
  8.30-10.00am Preschool Stay & Play Foundation building
14 December 8.30-10.00am Early Years Stay & Play Foundation building
15 December 8.15am UPrep Talk 7- Applying to UK and Europe Secondary Hall
  8.30-10.00am Reception Stay & Play Foundation building
  1.30-4.00pm Christmas Fair Covered football pitch
16 December 8.00am - 4.00 pm Parent/Teacher Conferences  

Term 2 ASPs

Term 2 ASP booking information will be coming your way in the next few days, and will include what to expect next term, booking dates and more. Don’t forget to check your emails! ASP Dates and Booking Phases explained:

12 December Term 2 ASP lists are uploaded to the website and posted on the bulletin board opposite the school shop.
4 - 8 January Booking Duration Phase 1: School Admin only. The booking page will appear ‘Open’ and green, however parents and students will not be able to book yet.
9 - 11 January Booking Duration Phase 2: Parents and Secondary students can select two ‘HeadStart ASPs’ in this phase. Parents can book as many Fee Paid ASPs as they would like in this booking phase.
12 - 13 January Booking Duration Phase 3: Only Parents are able to book additional HeadStart ASPs for their child. Note that three or more HeadStart ASPs will incur a charge of 5,600 THB for Terms 2 & 3. Parents can continue to book Fee Paid ASPs in this booking phase.
14 January ASPs are Enroled. An email will be sent, inviting you to check your child’s timetable and see what they have successfully enroled in. We ask Parents to carefully review their child’s ASPs and any implications this may have on family schedules, bus routes and transportation! Parents are no longer able to book through the Parent Portal and should contact Admin for support.
16 January ASPs begin. Parents have one week (14 - 21 January) to contact Admin to sort out any issues with their child’s ASPs and make necessary adjustments before the invoices are generated.

School Event Photos

Do you have a good camera and are willing to share your photography skills with the community? Sometimes due to a shortage of photographers amongst staff, we miss opportunities to capture good shots of school events, especially of our swim meets and football tournaments. That’s why we are reaching out to you! If you are already attending an event, why not send us some extra photos for everyone to enjoy! If you have albums to share, contact our front office by writing to [email protected]. Looking forward to hearing from you!


Mandarin Speaking Parents’ Meeting Invitation on 6.12.22

We would like to invite Mandarin-speaking parents for a meeting on Tuesday 6th December in the Dance and Drama studio on the 4th floor from 8.15 - 9.15 am. There will be a presentation about the Chinese First language program and interventions from Primary and Secondary leadership teams. We will also provide the answers to the questions that have been asked on the survey sent to parents. The meeting will be presented in Chinese and English and members of Senior Management will be in attendance.

Russian Speaking Parent Meeting on 29.11.22

On the 29th of November the school hosted an end of Term 1 Russian-speaking parent meeting. Ms Dina Kalmakhelidze gave a presentation regarding the first language Russian program, followed by a presentation on ‘Zones of regulations’ by Ms Rebecca Ross, Primary Deputy Head, Pastoral. The meeting ended with Mr Khan, Head of Primary, and Mr Lukats, Head of Secondary, answering questions asked by parents. The questions and answers ranged from curriculums at HeadStart to what is Pastoral care at HeadStart, school bus arrangements, the proportion of Russian-speaking students in classes, school lunches and more. Thank you to all the parents that came to the meeting, and we are already looking forward to the next meeting which will be in Term 3. -Mr Ben Salmon, Head of Languages

Uprep Talk on 1.12.22

If you weren’t able to make it to the UPrep Talk on the 1st of December, the information is provided on our UPrep tab on website. As always, if you need further information or would like to speak to one of our University Counsellors, please email Ms Bedi at [email protected] or Ms Gratton at [email protected].

PE & Sports

The much anticipated BISP soccer 7’s tournament took place over the weekend, which had 5 HeadStart Panthers Football Academy teams competing against teams from around Asia. The tournament was certainly challenging, and the bar was set high from the first whistle to the last, with teams forced to play through tough conditions. We are extremely proud of all the effort, resilience and the great football our teams played throughout the tournament. It was the first ever match for our new U11 Girls team and they performed excellently, it was a great experience for them. Our U13 boys’ hard fought efforts got them through to the Plate semi finals and the U15 Girls narrowly missed out on winning the Plate, however they did fantastic to get there having played so many games and getting some convincing results.

The U11 Boys performed with such heart and determination to rally together and go on to win the U11 Plate competition in a penalty shootout after a 1-1 final with Shrewsbury International School. Finally our U15s boys did amazing and finished 2nd in the CUP COMPETITION, finishing the tournament with a highly exciting final match. I would like to thank all the parents, coaches and staff for their support throughout the tournament. -Coach Frost (Full album is displayed on the school Facebook page)


This week we had our trip to Vanich Farm. There the children took part in feeding the cows, sheep, and buffalo. They planted some Morning Glory seeds and also learned about how to make a salted duck egg. It is a beautiful green area in Phuket town and it was really nice to visit and walk around the natural surroundings. -Ms Jasmine Gray


Year 3 Blue went on their school trip this week to explore the human and physical geographical features in Phuket. We visited Sarakul Stadium, Rang Hill, Saphan Hin and the mangrove forest. -Ms Kelly Smith

Creative & Performing Arts
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Alia Sillett

Director of Creative & Performing Arts
[email protected]

I was born and raised in Bath in the UK where I developed a love and passion for the performing arts. After completing my schooling, I studied Drama and Theatre Arts at the University of Kent in Canterbury for both my undergraduate degree and Masters Degree in which I specialised in stand-up comedy. I spent some time "gigging" on the stand-up circuit around the UK, culminating in being entered for the British funny Women of the year award in 2008. After being a teaching ambassador for the University of Kent I had the opportunity to teach in Thailand in 2008; it was here I found both my passion for teaching as well as Thailand! I returned to the UK to qualify as a teacher where I had a successful teaching and management career in the British state school system. I have had various roles in education; Key Stage Leader, Head of Faculty for Performing Arts and Assistant Head Teacher. During this time I have had the opportunity to gain my second Masters, in Education; Transformational Leadership and completed the Outstanding Leaders in Education programme. I am a passionate educationalist who truly believes in the power of drama to instil confidence, collaboration, leadership and individuality in our students. I have always been an advocate for holistic education and believe that a child's school experience should encompass academics, creativity and capacity for mental and physical growth. My classroom mantra is 'lead with kindness'. In 2016 myself and my husband moved back to Thailand to begin our international career at a top tier international school. During this time I was lucky enough to train with The Juilliard School completing their Drama teacher training and complete my category two International baccalaureate training in Theatre Arts with ISTA. After five years in Bangkok, we moved to HeadStart in 2021 with our two children who also attend the school. I love teaching and living in Thailand and like to spend my free time on the beach with my children, scuba diving, and searching for the best Som Tum on the island; so if you have any recommendations, please let me know!

And that’s a wrap!

This week saw the performances of our CAPA Sr production of Chicago. The students were phenomenal on stage, in the orchestra and back stage. Leading up to this, we have had a jam packed and fast paced three months filled with hard work and dedication from all of our students. I am honoured to work with such talented and committed young people, who have arrived at every rehearsal ready to work hard and take on feedback. I am confident that, with their can-do attitude and dedication, they will excel in all facets of their lives as they journey through HeadStart and into further studies and beyond. This year we were inundated with such talent that we made the decision to have two casts in many of our leading roles. This proved an additional challenge that the students rose to, resulting in two fantastic performances. This year we also have the largest ever student pit band HeadStart has seen, demonstrative of the hard work from the music department and the talent coming through the school.

Thank you to all those who have helped us on our Chicago journey; the maintenance and housekeeping teams who have built and hung and washed and made; the administrative team who have photographed and edited and liaised and ordered and the senior management team who have supported and provided guidance. Thank you also to Grapho for their sponsorship of our programmes.

The CAPA family is just that, a family. We are incredibly lucky to work with such a dedicated team of teachers who give up their time (and sanity) to ensure a successful and fun performance for our students. Without them we would not have tonight. The students have shown immeasurable commitment and dedication. I am proud of each of them and blown away by their talents. I consider myself very lucky that I get to work with them every day. Here are some snapshots from the light & sound box, our professional photos will be shared next week on social media and in the update.

English Faculty

It was gratifying to see all English A Level students show progress in their most recent VIMA assessments this week (70% thus far of them having improved their mark on their last piece). It was particularly pleasing to see the grit exhibited by those who took part in Chicago - their resilience and commitment exhibited by their sitting the papers the day after their final performance. As usual, students are helped in their feedback by collaboratively analysing a model essay- answering the same question as the one we ask them to answer-written by their teachers. This allows them to read, understand and practise these discursive skills in the next response they attempt. An example of my recent response ‘Unseen’ poem ‘Red shoes’ is seen below. -Mr. Pollicutt, Head of English

Social & Emotional Learning
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Indu Bedi

Head of Senior School
[email protected]

Swadee ka and Hello. My name is Indu Bedi and I am a Deputy Headteacher and a teacher of English at HeadStart International school. Having previously worked at HeadStart as the Head of English and Humanities, I am familiar with many aspects of this dynamic and creative school. I am excited to return in my new role to oversee the Sixth Form and Staff Development and once again work with a determined team of professionals to make this a successful school where all students thrive personally and academically. I learnt my craft as a teacher in England where I taught for 16 years holding a variety of roles including Head of Faculty, Director of Learning and Teaching, Assistant Headteacher and Deputy Headteacher. I embarked on my international career 10 years ago with my family and have since taught in Malaysia and Thailand. I am a certified Teacher Trainer with a specialism and a passion for developing pedagogical approaches to support language acquisition. I have written and led training in England and abroad. I have also worked for Sunderland University (UK) in supporting and assessing teachers training internationally. I have a BA (Hons) in the Humanities, majoring in English Literature, a PGCE in teaching English with Drama, an MA in Cultural and Critical Studies and I have completed my National Professional Qualification for Headship (NPQH) in the UK. I have a genuine interest in how our pedagogical approaches in the classroom can be developed to enhance the learning of all students. As a teacher and leader, I am a strong believer in the growth mindset (Carol Dweck); I believe intelligence can be grown through using the right methods to teach and through developing student self-belief. I am also passionate about creating effective lifelong learners through making learning as transparent as possible so students know what steps to take to ensure their own success. With these key ingredients, choosing the right methods to teach, nurturing the growth mindset and making learning transparent, I believe all students achieve academic success and leave school with a belief in themselves. I also have a passion for teaching my subject, English, as I believe language and literature lie at the heart of individual empowerment. The study of language allows us to understand how language is used and how to use language effectively for our own purposes; this is central to one’s success in and beyond school. The study of literature, whilst contributing to improved language skills, also develops intelligence, imagination and the ability to view the world through different lenses. I am looking forward to working in partnership with the students, and their parents, in the Sixth Form to ensure they achieve academic success and they continue to enjoy their lives as students at the school. I am also looking forward to working with colleagues across the school to develop learning and teaching practice so we continue to inspire a love of learning amongst all of our students. Outside of school, I enjoy being a mum to my two young daughters, Anoushka and Taara Lily, reading (I have a particular interest in post-colonial literature and self-development books), spending time in nature, meditating and trying new recipes in my kitchen!

Know Yourself

This term we returned to our Social and Emotional learning curriculum and revisited central aspects of getting to KNOW ourselves. In the Sixth form we focus our PSHE programme on supporting our students to transition into the adult world. We know many students will be leaving home and travelling to new places to study at the end of their time with us. We also know that as well as equipping them with the grades they need to meet the requirements of universities they need the skills to navigate life and the challenges it throws at us.

We began this term by looking at how we experience stress and using the simple act of naming emotions which has been scientifically proven to reduce the impact of stress. Watch this if you want to understand some of the science behind this. We use the Plutchik model (pictured below) to help students develop their emotional vocabulary to support them in using this strategy themselves.

We also explored how feelings can become more intense and the relationship between our thoughts, feelings and actions. Did you know if you change one of these elements (Thought, Feeling, Action) it will have a domino effect and change the other elements? This is another tool students can use when facing a challenging situation. As part of getting to know themselves, students have also considered what their patterns are in response to things that are unexpected, different or difficulties they face. In order to be able to respond to life rather than react we need to know our own patterns first. Students have had the opportunity to discuss how to change patterns which don’t serve them well.

Like any subject, emotional literacy and intelligence is a work in progress, this cannot be taught once and learnt. This takes practice. It is becoming more evident now that being emotionally intelligent is an expectation in the workplace. People who succeed to the most senior positions usually are well equipped with the competencies which are central to emotional intelligence. In getting our students future ready we know therefore that we need to teach much more than academics.


Meanwhile in Primary…

This term in Primary the SEL lessons have focused around ‘Know Yourself’. By focusing on the SEL competency of Self-Awareness, pupils have reflected on who they are as individuals and what makes them unique. Pupils have had the opportunity to identify and clarify thoughts and feelings which improves self-awareness and self-management, helps with problem-solving and reduces anxiety. They have also learnt that being self-aware also includes thinking about how we treat others with empathy, and caring about how others perceive them in a healthy way without being self-conscious. The SEL programme has blended well with the Zones of Regulation approach that is used across Foundation and Primary to support the development of self-regulation. The Zones framework provides strategies to teach pupils to become more aware of and independent in controlling their emotions and impulses, manage their sensory needs, and improve their ability to problem solve conflicts. The zones categorise all the different ways we feel and states of alertness we experience into four concrete coloured zones. These are on display around the classrooms to support pupils to recognize their feelings and self-regulate when needed. -Ms Rebecca Ross, Deputy Head Primary

Sixth Form

The Apprentice

This half term, Year 12 have been very fortunate to have Colin Gallagher from Prince of Songkla University delivering The Apprentice programme as part of our UPrep provision. Over a 6 week period, students have learnt how to write a CV, personal statement and valuable interview skills, which they have been putting into practice by taking part in mock interviews for companies with senior staff members. The students have done a fantastic job creating CV’s and personal statements and some have already had their interviews. The winners for each company will be announced in UPrep on Tuesday 13th December. We can’t wait to see how they’ve all done! -Ms Gratton

Service Fair

Last Friday the Sixth Form took part in HeadStart’s first Service Fair. Volunteering and a sense of social responsibility is something we are keen to promote to the young adults at HeadStart, so connecting students with potential opportunities to help others is a priority. Representatives from Good Shepherd Phuket Town, Phuket has Been Good to Us, Phuket Sunshine Village, the Government Dog Pound, and Heads of Faculty in school, all spoke to students about different ways they could give their time and skills to support our local community. The students will follow up with the organisations they are interested in, and we hope they will see the impact they can make on others. -Kelly Tuppen

Geography News

As part of their tectonic hazards unit, Year 8 have been learning about how to make buildings earthquake resistant. They have learnt many techniques from cross bracing and rubber shock absorbers to computer controlled weights at the top of buildings to counteract the shaking. This week in their Geography lesson Year 8 Blue were challenged to design and build their own earthquake proof structures. There were several different design styles and the winners were Artem, Anna, Juliette and Leon. Their design took inspiration from the Transamerica building in San Francisco and was unbelievably strong. A big thank you as well goes to Narissa and Jacen, Year 13 Geographers who came to lend their expertise and to Mr Rasheed for being an impartial judge. -Mr Dale Benham

Growing Garden

This week at Young Farmers club students have been becoming more independent working in the Garden. Phuket Farmers Club gave the students a series of Jobs to do in the garden. We were planting more Rosemary at the top of the spiral bed. We also took some more cuttings so that we could propagate some more Basil. Students then had watering cans at the ready and were giving the plants a good watering. Young Farmers club is open to all Secondary Students on a Thursday Lunchtime with Mr Benham and the Prefects.

Around the Island

Show your talent to the world!

We invite students to submit an original Photography about “OCEANS PLASTIC, IMPACT AND HOPE”. The contest is open from Nov 28 to Dec 31. What can you choose to photograph? Anything that fits into a category of OCEANS PLASTIC, IMPACT AND HOPE. It can be a negative impact as well as a positive one. Here’s all that you need to know: https://www.oceansforallfoundation.org/en/students-photography-contest/. The semi-finalists and finalists will be exhibited at Blue Tree. Please post any questions you have in the comments and we’ll answer you there, or write to us at [email protected]

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