Author: saezb (page 1 of 3)

Making Stories

After being exposed to many different stories from parents and teachers and the children making their own stories we wanted the children to reflect on these experiences. Had their understanding of ‘what is a story’ grown?

“My Dad, about when he went camping and he thought it was a beaver but it was actually a bear, he just telled it.”

“Josie’s dad, he write it, like use a marker to write it on the board.”

“My dad also acted out and he asked some of the children to act it out.”

“The story when we do the puppet show.”

“Beverley’s story….. using body and book…… and the cards she gave you to tell you the words.”

“I read a story about a tiger coming to tea with Henry.”

“I have at my house a three little pigs, Spanish too.”

“I made a story at my home, I made it with paper.”

“I made a story, it’s in my pocket… me and Elsie made a story together, I wrote it and I drawed a picture”

“I make stories with my puppet, it is a very scary, scary story.”

“My mom read a story about the red elf, story got pictures.”

“My mommy too, Korean and my mommy is good at reading in Korean.”

“Noah’s mum… picnic….rain…bee…train…..it rhyme, train and rain.”

“You did the fruit snack one with Ms Hitomi…. Ms Hitomi was poking Ms Beth….  the fruit snack one.”

The teachers reflected on the children’s comments. Their understanding had certainly expanded. A story was no longer just something that came from a book.

We then told the children that we had been taking photos and videos of the ‘stories’ that had been happening at the ELC.

“We can show the video to our mum’s and dad’s….to the janitor….to the cleaning ladies….to Ms Mason….Mr Claydon….and we can send it to Santa!…..and then the whole world can see it.”   

We are looking forward to showing you the video at our ELC Assembly on Tuesday!

Stories can be told in many ways

We have begun our HOW WE EXPRESS OURSELVES unit of inquiry with the central idea that ‘stories can be told in many ways’. We wanted to gage the children’s understanding of this central idea at the beginning of the unit. Each child was asked individually, “what is a story?’

Some of the responses of the children:

“A story is a book.”

“Something that you …something with pictures and something that we can read from.”

“Something that you love and something that you read.”

“Story is new, like flower story or owl story.”

“A story is a something to read.”

“Sounds. It’s like sounds. You can hear……”

“Mukashi banashi.”  (story from a long time ago)

“A special story.”

After reading over all the thoughts of the children and seeing what ‘threads’ of understanding we could identify the teachers decided that they wanted to provide provocations to the group that would broaden their understanding of ‘a story’. Parents have been invited in to share ‘stories’ and the teachers are also thinking of ways to share. Ms Mason is using music with stories. Our puppet theatre is out and many other experiences are available  to the children. Children are natural story tellers and we are excited to see how this inquiry will develop.




Making Chapati’s for Morning Snack

Chapati from YIS Academics on Vimeo.

This Tuesday Kanchi, Samu’s mum came in and shared one of her ‘passions’. The children made chapati’s for their snack. They rolled and shaped the dough and then cooked their chapati with Kanchi. The cooked chapati was then spread with butter or cream cheese and folded into quarters and wrapped in foil. Everyone really enjoyed them!

A Snowy Day

The ELC children experienced their own ‘snowy day’ on Monday and Tuesday of this week. The excitement on the faces of the children was lovely to see. Our playground, covered in snow looked delightful. The children ran around feeling and touching the snow. With a snow day on Tuesday many children built snowmen and played outside with their families.

Here are some of the thoughts from the children:

Lea  “It’s beautiful! I like that!”

Sebastian “So fun!.”

JJ  “I like the snow. Because I can play with the snow.”

Kai  “Look, snow is over there!”  ” I like snow because I can wear rain boots.”

Samu ” It’a snowing, it’s snowing!”  “Flower is getting snow!”

Emma E2   “I eat snow!”

Zain “It’s like soft and so cold!”

Henry “I made ice. I squished the snow and put together and made ice” when I dropped it some of them broke.”

Ellis “It’s nice and peaceful.”

The Colours of Winter

Colors of Winter from YIS Academics on Vimeo.

With the start of the Winter Term at the ELC the teachers have put out a new pallet of colours; greys and blacks, silvers and whites, purples and maroons. Instantly the children have been drawn to these new experiences and provocations. Their individual display panels are already filling up with collages, paintings and drawings using these wintery shades. Other pieces of work are also dotted around the classroom as the children explore these new mediums that simulate the senses and excite the eye.

Outdoors, winter means hats and coats, gloves and boots. With sunny days, winter outdoors is stimulating for the children as they explore. With the wind, has come kite making and the pleasure of wind on your face.

The Craft Luncheon

Craft Luncheon from YIS Academics on Vimeo.

On Friday parents, grandparents, younger brothers and sisters, teachers and ELC children came together for our annual Craft Luncheon. Our aim was to make gifts for the Baby Home children and too share a fantastic lunch together. It was lots of fun working in groups to make the playdough and to draw the cards. The variety of food at lunch time was exceptional. This was a wonderful ELC community event.

Ceramic Fruit Bowls

On Wednesday a group of 10 E1 and E2 children walked down to the main with Ms Yuka and Ms Beth. We were going to the art studio to make ceramic bowls with Ms Justice (Evie’s mum) and her Grade 8 class. Our ELC children were each paired up with one of the Grade 8 students; Ms Beth’s daughter Sofia was there as was Anna’s brother Dan. Together the children pounded and rolled the brown clay which they formed over mould. Then they used  leaves, pinecones and sticks that they had gathered in the park to make patterns and prints in the surface of the clay. The bowls were then left to dry and would be fired in the kiln later. In two weeks time we will return to  art studio to glaze the bowls and then place then in the kiln ourselves to be fired again. The finished will be used to serve our fruit snack each day.

This was a wonderful experience for both our ELC children and the Grade 8 students to be able to work together. Ms Justice commented that her students ‘were buzzing’ after we left.

We want to extend this experience to the other ELC children and hope the ‘experts’ we now have in ceramics will show the other children how to make a bowl over the next few weeks.


The Visit of the Baby Home Children

Baby Home from YIS Academics on Vimeo.

The ELC has a long lasting relationship with the Lady of Lourdes Baby Home. Every year we invite the youngest children, who are not yet in school, to come and play with us at the ELC. In preparation for the children’s visit we discuss the Baby Home and how we could welcome our friends. We did this first with the E2 children who had experienced the visit last year. The children’s thinking and their contributions were very powerful and they were able to convey this to the E1 group. The children displayed real empathy for the Baby Home children and had a real sense of concern for others who did not have mum’s and dad’s as they did. It was decided that we would draw, paint and make origami as a ‘gift.’ On Tuesday three children visited us; we sang songs together, ate  fruit snack, played in the classroom and explored outside. The ELC children were very welcoming and it was a delight to see them hand in hand enjoying each others company. We are looking forward to another visit next week. 

The ELC Garden

Gardening from YIS Academics on Vimeo.

We believe that the outdoor environment is very important and with this in mind we have been wanting to plant out the ELC gardens. One of our parents who is involved in a family nursery was able to provided us with flower and vegetable plants. On the only sunny day this week the children and Ms Beth planted. Every child was invited to help and most did, enjoying the sensation of the earth on their hands. We will now be watching to see how the plants grow.

The following afternoon the children discussed how they could care for the plants. “Why do you think we did planting yesterday?”

“Because we wanted our garden to look beautiful and we wanted the bees to come and make honey……..And we also want the ELC to smell good, like flowers………..We planted vegetables so we could pick them and eat them!”


What do you think we should tell everyone about the garden?

“You have to don’t pick it and just put the water inside………don’t step on the plants ……..don’t bounce a ball there.”

When it is sunny we will need to water the plants – how can we decide who waters them?

“We can take turns by you calling their names and they can have a turn and we can play outside and then they can have a turn…….we can write the list and we can buy a bucket and take turns!”

Our meeting finished there. The teachers will remind the children about the ideas of ‘taking turns and writing a list’ after the break and see how the children want to organize a ‘system’ to care for our garden.


Otsukimi – a Japanese Full Moon Festival

Otsukimi from YIS Academics on Vimeo.

We believe in the valuable experiences a setting such as an international school offers. At YIS we are able to draw upon multiple cultures, values, ideas and traditions to better build one’s own identity as well as developing our understanding of WHO WE ARE. 

We experienced our first cultural experience this year with our Japanese mothers who kindly re-enacted the Full Moon Viewing (Otsukimi) with a display of ‘odango’ (rice dumpling), persimmons which are a seasonal fruit and pampas grass. In Japan, the pattern on the moon’s surface is associated with rabbits making rice cakes (omochi), and the children helped to make the rice dumplings by rolling it into little balls which were later boiled by the mothers. It was delightful to observe the engagement of the children and their courage to try tasting something unknown and unfamiliar to them. 

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