28 Jan
Weekly2 months ago

Weekly Update #20, 31 January 2020

Dates for Your Diary

Upcoming events can be found on the website under School Life → Calendar and are outlined here for easy reference. For daily updates and news follow the HeadStart Facebook Page and You Tube channel. To join the Parent Community Facebook group click here!

Date Time Event Location
1-2 February TBA Years 3-6 Rehearsal for The Little Mermaid  
3 February All day Yearbook Photos  
5 February 3.35pm Year 11 Parent-Teacher Presentation/Conferences Drama Studio
6 February 8.15am UPrep Talk-Applying to Thai Universities Primary Hall
  3.20pm No ASPs due to The Little Mermaid show  
  2.00pm and 5.30pm Years 3-6 Production of The Little Mermaid Sports Hall
7 February 2.30-5.30pm Friday Market Atrium
7-9 February All day ATOD International Dance Competition BKK
11 February   Haringey Concert Showcase Blue Tree
12 February 2.20pm Year 11 Subjects Fair Secondary Hall
11-14 February   Sports Days Sports Facilities
17-21 February All week Mid-term break  
Health Update
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Adam Drew

Headmaster
[email protected]

Since joining HeadStart International School in August 2014, I have been genuinely impressed by the hard work and commitment of all those involved in making HeadStart a place where students are inspired to have the ‘love of learning’ described in the school’s motto. The school community here is one of the best I have ever-worked with and the positive energy that this creates enables us to achieve so much together. Since our last inspection where the school was rated as a good with a number of outstanding features highlighted, I strongly believe that HeadStart International School is well on the way to becoming one of the best schools in Thailand, providing the highest standards in teaching and learning. As we prepare for the next phase where we hope to gain a solid ‘Outstanding’ rating, the next few years will be a truly exciting time for all those involved. Having had a successful Teaching career in the UK for a number of years and having worked in various different management positions, my wife Amy and I made the decision to move to Thailand in 2012 where I worked at an International School in Bangkok. The opportunity to make a real impact at HeadStart and to help shape the future successes of the school drew me to move to Phuket. On a personal level, I am a keen sportsman and have an interest in many sports both as a spectator or participant. A highlight for me was having a leadership position for Event Services at the London 2012 Olympic Games. I am also keen golfer and compete in many of the regular competitions held here in Phuket and further afield. My wife Amy is a teacher in the Foundation department having joined HeadStart shortly after I did. Since working at HeadStart we have become parents for the first time. Ted Drew was born in April 2018 and is excited to be joining pre-school in this academic year. I look forward to continuing to working with the inspired staff and students and the committed and supportive parents that make up the HeadStart. Together we will ensure that we continue to build on the existing successes of the school and make each academic year even more successful than the last. Please feel free to email me at any time to discuss your ideas on how we can do this together. I look forward to meeting you again as the year progresses!

I would like to thank you all for your understanding during the first week of the measures we have already implemented. The response has been overwhelmingly positive from parents and I really do appreciate your support. I think it is also important to remind all parents that our responses to the Coronavirus must also be proportional and reasonable whilst ensuring that our children’s safety is paramount. I plan to keep parents updated on a regular basis via email.

On Friday we concluded a week of scanning students, parents, and staff for fevers as they arrived at school in the morning. An emphasis has been put on keeping hands clean and anyone showing signs of illness were sent home. Although there are no known cases of the virus at school, we encourage you to send your child to school with a mask. It is also important to remember, the key ways to control the spread of illness, as recommended by the World Health Organization (WHO) are as follows:

  1. Frequently clean hands with soap and water or by using alcohol-based hand rub.
  2. Cover nose and mouth when coughing and sneezing. Throw away tissues and wash hands immediately.
  3. Avoid close contact with anyone who has a fever and cough.
  4. Seek medical help if you show signs of the flu.
  5. Avoid direct unprotected contact with live animals and surfaces in contact with animals.
  6. Avoid the consumption of raw or undercooked animal products.

The Little Mermaid Bookings Now Open

Book your tickets for the lively performance of ‘The Little Mermaid’ performed by Year 3-7 in the school auditorium on 6 February. There will be two showings: one at 2:00pm and the second showing will be at 5:30pm. The show is free of charge and there is no restriction on the amount of people you can bring. CLICK HERE To BOOK!

Haringey Musicians

On the 11th of February HeadStart’s CAPA Academy will join KIS, UWC, and BIS in a joint performance with Haringey Blue Tree Phuket. It will be a musical evening not to be forgotten! Buy your tickets here

The Haringey young Musicians is a registered charity that supports the musical development of children living or attending schools within the London borough of Haringey, UK. The group runs an extensive range of instrumental and choral ensembles, maintaining a full annual program of high profile engagements in the UK and internationally. More information can be found in the download provided below.

Parent Fitness
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Suzanne Van De Venne

Fitness Coach
[email protected]

Suzanne is a high-performance coach helping individuals to live their best lives and adjust to the habits that will get them to their goals. With her background as a Physical Education teacher, she has lots of experience in teaching individuals and groups on 'how to be healthy'. At any given week she is an entrepreneur, coach, health nut, dedicated wife and loving mom of two wonderful girls, an athlete, sports scientist, personal development junky, friend and lover of life.

HITT Classes for Parents

We are delighted to offer a new parent’s fitness class every Wednesday between 8.00-9.00am starting on the 26th of February. The class will be instructed by Suzanne Van De Venne, a HeadStart parent. Here’s a little information about her and the class.

HIIT - High-Intensity Interval Training! Fat Burning Session. In this session, we will do short bursts of intense exercise, followed by recovery periods of low-intensity activity or rest. It will work your heart and lungs system (cardio) but also your strength and power. Come along to join, all levels are welcome!

HITT has many benefits, to name a few:

  • It can help you lose fat while building muscle
  • It can make you fit in a fairly short amount of time

Suzanne is a high-performance coach helping individuals to live their best lives and adjust to the habits that will get them to their goals. With her background as a Physical Education teacher, she has lots of experience in teaching individuals and groups on ‘how to be healthy’. At any given week she is an entrepreneur, coach, health nut, dedicated wife and loving mom of two wonderful girls, an athlete, sports scientist, personal development junky, friend and lover of life. Suzanne looks forward to seeing you in class!

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Erik Bohm

Running Coach
[email protected]


Effortless Running

Effortless Running is a company specializing in teaching a running technique that allows people to run better, faster, longer and injury-free for the rest of their lives. Through online coaching and a focus on running mechanics and running economy, runners connect with how their bodies were designed to run. The Effortless Running method (tm) has helped hundreds of people transform their run, at their own pace, in their own time!

The Effortless Running Essentials program is a 3-week program that takes you through a mini-transformation. Focussing on your running economy (as opposed to making you run harder, faster, longer) for as little as 3 weeks will help tremendously in moving closer towards an effortless, enjoyable run.

This 3-week introduction to Effortless Running has proven to work time and time again for those runners who need to take a step back in order to leap forward afterward. Going through this program, helps your brain to re-wire the way that you are running. You will gain the running form needed to smash any personal record afterward. And the beauty of it all is that the answer lies in actually doing less. Forget the ‘no pain, no gain’ mentality and focus on training ‘smart rather than hard’.

Upon completion of the 3-week introduction, you will run better, stronger, lighter and more effortless. You give yourself the gift of allowing the body to run like it was designed to run. Additional benefits of this 3-week introduction are that you can start the transformation at your own pace and time, with weekly feedback from a certified Effortless Running coach and access to the TrainingPeaks platform and an awesome community of like-minded runners all on their own path to Effortless Running.

The 3-week ‘Effortless Running Essentials’ program benefits all runners. From the most driven PB chasers to those returning to the sport. As a promotion, I would like to offer the Effortless Running Essentials program to the HeadStart community at a discounted price of THB 2,500. Please contact Erik [email protected] if you are interested in starting your Effortless Running experience.

Sports and PE Department News

Head over to the HeadStart Facebook page for pictures and news of some of our star athletes competing in Thailand and around the world. We are very proud of their accomplishments and wish each of our students continued success in their chosen field of sport.

On the 11-14th of February, HeadStart will be hosting Sports Days for the students. Please have a look at the table below so that you are aware of the date and time of your child’s involvement. Students should wear their House shirt, P.E. shorts and sports shoes/trainers. It is important that students stay hydrated and protected from the sun so please remind them to bring a water bottle, sun cream, and a sun hat. Ms Nathalie Smith

Year Date Time Location Key Information
Foundation Wednesday 12th February 09:00-11:00 Covered astro pitch Students split into 6 groups and participate in a carousel of athletic-based activities
Year 1-2 Wednesday 12th February 13:00-15:10 All outdoor facilities Students participate in track and field athletic activities
Year 3-6 Tuesday 11th February 08:00-11:55 All outdoor facilities Students participate in traditional track and field athletic activities and then fun/wacky races, including the ever-popular tug-of-war!
Year 7-11 Friday 14th February 08:10-11:30 Covered Astro Pitch Students participate in track and field athletic activities
Year 7-13   12:10-15:00 All outdoor facilities Students participate in a carousel of team activities

A big thank you to Khun Na for donating so many beautiful children’s books. What a great addition to our library!

Foundation Stay and Play Session

Foundation hosted their first Stay and Play session of 2020 with a Lunar New Year celebration! Many parents brought in items to share, related to Lunar New Year including food, flags, banners! The children had the opportunity to develop new skills through their play with activities linked to the Lunar New Year. Stay and Play sessions give parents the opportunity to see how their children can learn through play as well as strengthening the relationships our teachers have with parents. We would like to thank all of our parents for joining us today and wish everyone a Happy Lunar New Year from the Foundation Team. Ms Hannah Brown, Deputy Head of Foundation

Early Years students have been learning the Thai letter บ, Bor Bai Mai. They made the letter by using colourful pinboards. Kru Poy

Reception has started off the year enjoying a range of fairy tale stories. The children followed a recipe to make gingerbread men; they followed two-part instructions, measured the ingredients and worked super hard as a team to stir the mixture. We read the story ‘Little Red Riding Hood’, the children were fascinated by the big bad wolf and wondered where he was. We followed the children’s interests and the children made wanted posters before proceeding to go on a hunt for the wolf, going under, over and around objects in the outdoor area.

The Giant from ‘Jack and the Beanstalk’ sent a letter to school, it was extremely big! The children used their phonics knowledge to read what he wrote; he asked the children to find things bigger and smaller than his footprints. Finally, Reception finished their fairy tale topic by reading ‘Goldilocks and the Three Bears’, they have been comparing size in their play by making big, medium and small beds. They have spoken about feelings by taking on the role of Goldilocks and the Bears, which was enjoyed by all! But most of all, the children enjoyed using their imagination to make porridge for the three bears. The children have developed in all areas of learning and we look forward to seeing further development in our new topic of ‘Minibeasts’. Ms Milly & Miss Keeley

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David Pollicutt

Head of English & Humanities
[email protected]

My name is David Pollicutt 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 Psychology. 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 Hotspsur Football Club; it teaches me patience and humility.

One of the most effective ways of students’ learning a discursive, analytical style to their writing is through their reading of good models.

In the English and Humanities Faculty, your children’s teachers often model good writing practice by creating their own pieces as examples. These follow the assessment objectives and help students see precisely which skills the examiners are looking for them to exhibit. We do this from Year 7 all the way up to the top end, at A Level. Please see my example written below for the Year 13s, who are studying Tess of the D’Urbervilles.

We hope it is through high intellectual expectations such as the ones in evidence here that we can continue to Inspire a Love of Learning.

This week the year 10 artists traveled to Phuket Town to obtain primary resources for their up and coming new project based on Architecture. Students took photographs and produced some fantastic observational drawings of the beautiful buildings in the town such as The Blue Elephant restaurant and the shops on Soi Romanee. They did so well drawing in the hot conditions that I thought an ice-cream from Torry’s was well deserved. Keep it up Y10! Ms Samantha Gill

House News

The Dodgeball competition continues to be popular and we have seen some great sportsmanship and funny moments. Mr Clarke was excited to join in with this week’s activity, but whilst celebrating his arrival was immediately hit by the opposing Yellow Cheetahs and he was out straight away. One of our Green Dragons showed great sportsmanship this week and set an example for everybody.

In other House News, the Red Phoenixes came out top in the Maths Faculty weekly quiz and the Sports Day preliminaries in the Secondary School are well under way. The results that have come in already are exciting and the Sports Day scores could drastically change the House Points Totals.

This year’s Secondary Sports Day will see a new exciting March Past, whereby each House is to walk into Sports Day chanting their House Song. This is designed to increase the House Spirit and get everybody excited for the day ahead. The students will see these House Chants displayed on the TV screens around school, in the dining hall and will have the opportunity to practise this next week. Ms Kirstie Melville

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