Introduction to YIS Elementary Curriculum for NEW Parents

There will be an Introduction to the Elementary Curriculum workshop suitable for new parents to YIS and interested community members. This parent workshop is held twice a year in September and in January. This will be presented by the ES Principal, Ms Jacquie Pender, and  the ES Vice Principal / PYP Coordinator, Ms Shanel Catasti.

Sign-up: catastis@yis.ac.jp

When: Monday 23 September, 2013 from 9:00 – 10:30 AM

Where: Loft

The Five Minute University – Father Guido Sarducci teaches what an average college graduate knows after five years from graduation in five minutes.  Does this type of education prepare our students for the 21st century?


 

IB Learner Profile – The IB learner profile is the IB mission statement translated into a set of learning outcomes for the 21st century.

Elementary Back to School Night for Parents

YIS would like to invite you to our “Back To School Night” for our Kindergarten to Grade 5 classes, on Wednesday September 11th, starting at 6:45PM and finishing at 8:15PM.  The purpose of this evening is to provide you with information regarding your child’s class, and an overview of the exciting learning opportunities that lie ahead for this school year. During this evening you will have the opportunity to meet your child’s class teacher, and the other teachers who work in the grade level.

Our Single Subjects teachers for Japanese, Mother Tongue (Dutch), Physical Education, Music, Drama and Art, along with the Director of ICJC will also be available for you to meet and will provide a general overview of their subject area.  Also the Student Support teachers for Learning Support, EAL and Student Counseling will be available throughout the evening.

Parking and Refreshments: The playground will be open for parking from 6:15pm. Cafeteria will be open from 6:30pm for tea/coffee refreshments.

Organisation

Grade K – 2

  • 6:45 – 7:20pm Grades K – 2 parents attend their child’s homeroom for a meeting with their class teacher.
  • 7:30 – 8:10pm Grades K-2 parents can visit Single Subject Teachers in their classrooms for short presentations about their subject and are invited to ask questions.

Grades 3 – 5

  • 6:45 – 7:20pm Grades 3-5 parents can visit Single Subject Teachers in their classrooms for short presentations about their subject and are invited to ask questions.
  • 7:30 – 8:10pm Grades 3-5 parents attend their child’s homeroom for a meeting with their class teacher.

For further details, please check your inbox for an elementary broadcaster sent home on Monday September 2, 2013.

Elementary Science at YIS

Throughout the year students at YIS have enjoyed many exciting experiences that relate to science including cooking, gardening, marble runs, building simple machines, creating inventions, trips to the zoo, stargazing, growing class pets, trips to the park, guest speakers, making crystals, and much more.

Science at YIS is not as simple as memorizing facts and formulas. It is about creating questions, inquiring into concepts, hands on experiences, understanding processes and drawing conclusions.

Science is all around us. If you are looking to support your child as a scientist it is actually quite simple and very enjoyable. Encourage them to ask questions then experiment to find the answer, take them outdoors and they will naturally talk about nature, involve them in some cooking, plan a weekend trip to a museum, read and discuss non fiction texts together. Most importantly learn together. If you are having conversations about daily life and encouraging your child to ask questions then you are helping them to think scientifically. When they ask ‘silly’ questions such as “dad, why do we have earthquakes?”, or “mum why does my face go red when I get hot?”, be sure to follow up with your child and find out some answers together. You never know where the inquiry will take you.

A wonderful resource for both starting conversations and for researching information is wonderopolis.org. Please take a moment to take a look – it is updated with a new wonder each day.

Allow yourself to become swept up by your child’s enthusiasm for finding out more!

Geoff Geddes

ES Science Project Leader

Elementary Teachers

What Parents Really Need to Know!

 

 

 

 

 

 

On Monday October 1 2012, there was an Introduction to the PYP  workshop held at YIS for new families and interested school community members.  The workshop which was led by Ms Jacquie Pender, ES Principal, and Ms Shanel Catasti, ES Vice Principal/Curriculum Coordinator, was attended by twenty parents. This interactive workshop allowed parents to experience being part of a PYP classroom which includes working collaboration, active learning and independent thinking time. They also shared their prior knowledge of their own schooling, how that relates to 21st Century Learners and their childand how the PYP addresses this.

Some important information shared with parents during the workshop actually came from recent research about what type of education will best help children learn. Looking over the key points listed below, these are all evident in the PYP and are a regular part of what learning looks like in at YIS:

1. How to process and use information and less about imparting it.

2. Work collaboratively

3. The ability to use new technologies in multiple ways

4. Promote dynamic and active learning classrooms

5. Educational experiences promote international and global understanding

6. More emphasis on the analysis of data

 Lawrence. H. Summers (former President of Harvard University) New York Times, 20 January 2012

 

 

 

 

Parents were asked to share ‘burning’ questions they had about PYP and to complete a parent questionnaire about the elementary curriculum.The key points that arose from these were:

  • How are the subjects of mathematics and language connected to the Units of Inquiry?
  • How is student progress assessed and monitored?
  • How do students in PYP perform compared with other curriculums around the world?
  • How does PYP linked to the other IB programs of MYP and DP?
  • How does PYP support students in their development of life long learning?

The most common question that parents ask was: “How can I best support my child at home?”  

Ms Pender shared some simple yet important advice. The best way is to allow your child to play!  Let your child develop a passion he/she has, allow time for relaxation and exploration and give your child opportunities to be bored and make decisions on how to use his/her time. Also talk to your child in your mother tongue as it supports on-going learning of  the mother tongue language, which is vital for learning another language.

The importance of PLAY has been well researched and documented and recently posted on the Community Learning blog that highlighted why children and adults need to play.Read More about the importance of Play HERE!

This will be addressed more in detail in a future parent newsletter and blog post.

Parents gave positive feedback about the workshop saying:

“It was a good opportunity to know about the PYP and talk with other parents. Thank you!”

“The workshop was wonderful and very informative. It cleared lots of my doubts.”

“I got the big picture purpose of PYP and I totally agree with it! Thank you.”

“We feel fortunate to have access to YIS and to have such dedicated and passionate teachers. Thank you!”

Thank you to all parents who attended and such positive, supportive feedback!

There will be a repeat of this workshop for new families on Tuesday 29 January, 2013.

 

 

Coffee and Conversation with Senior Leadership – Elementary School

Coffee and Conversation with Senior Leadership – Elementary School

Date: Monday – September 17, 2012
Time: 9:00 AM to 10:30 AM
Location: Cafeteria

Parents are warmly invited to join Ms. Pender, Ms. Catasti and Mr. Stanworth for an informal get-together over coffee and pastries in the cafeteria. They will briefly discuss recent developments at school, with a focus on the elementary school, but most of the session will be devoted to an open Q&A style discussion with parents. We have scheduled the event on a Japanese national holiday so that working spouses may also attend.

Introduction to YIS Elementary Curriculum for NEW Parents

There will be an Introduction to the Elementary curriculum  workshop suited to new parents to YIS and interested community members. This is a repeat of the parent workshop held in October at the beginning of the school year.  This will be presented by the ES Principal, Ms Jacquie Pender, and the ES Vice Principal / PYP Coordinator, Shanel Catasti.

Sign-up: catastis@yis.jp.ac

When: Wednesday, February 29th, 2012,  9:00 – 10:30 AM

Where: Cafeteria

The Five Minute University – Father Guido Sarducci teaches what an average college graduate knows after five years from graduation in five minutes.  Does this type of education prepare our students for the 21st century?

IB Learner Profile – The IB learner profile is the IB mission statement translated into a set of learning outcomes for the 21st century.

Dan Meyer: Math class needs a makeover

Here are a couple of inspirational TEDtalks videos about Mathematics. The great part about watching these is that at YIS, we have been adapting our programme and teaching methods for many years and a lot of what these guys are saying about what is wrong with Mathematics in schools does not apply to our programmes or to our teaching philosophy. We have made great efforts to develop an inquiry driven programme here at YIS that is dynamic, based on real world problems and will equip our students with the tools they will need to be successful and confident in their lives and careers.

Frequently Asked Questions

A big “Thank you!” to everyone who attended the “Grade 3-5 MathematMathics Workshop” on Tuesday 16th and “Grade K-2 Mathematics Workshop” on Thursday 18th November.

The workshop was a valuable opportunity for us to communicate our beliefs and practices to the school community and for us to introduce the exchange of ideas and understanding that the Learning Hub will engender. We were once again impressed with the level of participation and understanding shown by our parent body…deep down, everybody loves Maths!

If you have any further questions, please don’t hesitate to leave them in the comment box below.

Best wishes,

David Goddard

Elementary Mathematics Coordinator