Yesterday both Moshi and Arusha Campuses had their M5 Ceremonies. Congratulations to all the UWC East Africa M5 students. It was great to see the turnout online, in Moshi we had about 100 different groups from around the world attending to see these students make the transition out of MYP.
Thank you to all of those that contributed to this event, in particular to Mr Ochieng. I know this one was particularly important to him as his last ceremony at UWCEA. To the students, best wishes, enjoy the break and I look forward to seeing most of you here next year as Diploma students. To the few that are not coming back, I wish you all the best in your plans for next year and beyond. We will miss you and hope to see you back on campus for a visit one day.
Next Friday the 12th we will start the wrapping up of online classes. While a few classes, particularly the Diploma, have some work continuing into the following week, most classes will have their last academic work on that Friday. I know a few teachers are making some online social plans for their classes during that last week. In that last week we will have the opportunity for teachers and parents to set up online video conferences to discuss student progress. These may be initiated by either the parent or teacher.
On Thursday June 18th we will be having an online final assembly. Mare details will be coming in the next week.
To quote a poem by P5’s Joshua,
“Corona 19, I hate you a lot I’d like to destroy you and leave you to rot I work by myself, I can’t go to school I can’t go to football or swim in the pool”
I think I can safely say that we all share Joshua’s sentiments. This unprecedented pandemic has turned our lives upside down and closed schools across the globe. As a result, traditional end of year ceremonies across the world have looked very different this year. For us at UWCEA Moshi Campus, this has meant that instead of packing a decorated and resplendent K-Hall or Rafiki Hall in all our finery, we have followed the global trend and shifted to virtual celebrations for our M5 Ceremony and D2 Graduation.
However, as was mentioned many times in both ceremonies, our M5 and D2 cohort (and teachers!) are nothing if not resilient and adaptive. As a community, I believe these shared experiences only serve to bring us closer together and reinforce our collective solidarity in the face of adversity.
Indeed, one enormously positive benefit of these Zoom meetings has been friends and family all over the world being able to take part in the festivities live. I hope this is an aspect that we can somehow retain going forward. In addition, being able to share the recordings of these events also means that everyone will have a keepsake to revisit again and again.
True, these “once-in-a-lifetime” moments may be slightly bittersweet or, even, anticlimactic for some of us. However, those who were able to join these online gatherings will surely agree that these events were no less memorable. In fact, with everything we have gone through together this year it may make them even more momentous.
As is often said, change is the only constant. Indeed, with everything that is happening across the world today, you could argue that the world our M5 and D2 students grew up in no longer exists.
I wish you all nothing but the very best for all that is to come. Lastly, a massive thank you to the teachers and ancillary staff who have supported and encouraged you throughout your time at school. Sending lots of virtual hugs, handshakes and high fives to all of you. Hongera!
Thank you to everyone who “attended” the D2 graduation last week. It was lovely to see so many family and friends there to celebrate the end of their journey at the school. We hope you all enjoyed it. The video and photographs have been shared with students along with soft copies of their certificates. Hard copies will be sent when we send the IB diploma certificates. Students will need to arrange to return their textbooks to school and I am in contact with them about this.
For the D1 students we are coming to the end of their first year of the diploma. As this is a two-year programme work will need to continue over the break. However, it is really important they do take time to rest. I will be in contact with them about what is expected in the next week. It was lovely to see some of the parents at the virtual coffee meeting on Wednesday.
M5 Virtual Ceremony After a week of research on their chosen careers, the M5 students finally held their ceremony. Thanks to all members of the school community who attended the virtual event. Your presence was highly valued. We believe the M5 students got the best we could in terms of celebrating their MYP completion despite the prevailing challenges.
Distance Learning in the MYP Classes will be finishing from Friday June 12. We wish to thank all members of the school community who worked hard to make the distance learning programme work. From Monday June 15 to Thursday June 18, teachers will be available for ad hoc virtual conferences with parents. These conferences will be conducted only where necessary and either the teacher or parent is allowed to initiate them. Reports will be issued in time to enable parents make informed decisions regarding the virtual Teacher Parent conferences.
The house competition is not settled yet for the year. The next two events could decide who is the winner for this year so stay tuned.
We have all witnessed another example of how our lives are inextricably linked, even though we are thousands of miles away from each other. I am impressed with the way young people are getting involved in the conversations and calling for change that has been sought for so many years. As you embark upon conversations in your own homes, please feel free to access some of the new resources that have been added to the COVID-19 Counselor Resources related to talking with your child about racism. There will be more to come, and I welcome any resources you have found that are helpful during these challenging times.
Now that we are less than two weeks away from the end of the school year, I am looking to wrap things up for our soon to be university bound students and those who will be applying in the near future. For our D2 students, I remain a resource as they finalize their plans, or look to take a planned Gap Year then apply in the upcoming cycle. I hope that all D1 students have shared their Post-Secondary Plan Google Slideshow with their parents (even though some have not shared with me), and continue to access the tools and resources available for them in Maia Learning. As our M5 students celebrate the successful completion of the MYP program, I am excited to see the careers that they are considering, and encourage them, and their parents, to continue exploring Maia Learning and virtual college/university visits throughout the long holiday. Although it may seem harsh, I believe in the phrase, “Those who fail to plan, plan to fail.” I recognize that life circumstances can throw plans completely off course, but if you planned once, you can plan again even when circumstances change. I am here to support the development of plans, and any questions that may come up along the way. Over the long break, I will be taking some time off, but will offer a few drop in sessions throughout that time for students who need additional assistance when they don’t have school work to deal with.
I continue to welcome D1 and M5 parents to request access to their child’s Maia Learning account by sending me an email. The presentation that I did on 28 May was recorded, and I can send that to you as well to assist you with exploring the platform.
Lastly, as we wind down the school year, there are not as many college/university presentations available through the school. However, most institutions are offering an array of resources on their websites to help students and families learn more about what they have to offer. I encourage all of you to spend some time learning more about the institutions you are interested in by visiting their websites and their official social media accounts.
Wishing you a wonderful and restful weekend, and all the best as we continue to make sense of a difficult time.
Congratulations to the M5s for ending their Middle Years successfully. Thank you parents for this successful week. I hope you managed to submit your child’s entries for the Leopard and Chess Inter-house competitions. Next week, will be our final week of online learning but I also know that some classes will be presenting their Summative Assessments and winding up in the last week. Each teacher has their own set up of the remaining part of the quarter so more details will be sent to you by the respective teacher.
Student Voice would like to remind the community to please send in a video thanking a staff member of their choice by June 10th 2020. We’re also still accepting Prank Day videos. All videos can be sent to Ms. Elisha at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The children have been tying together their learning this week by producing their own stories. Beginning by selecting and drawing the characters, they went on to story map their initial ideas and represent the beginning, middle and end of the story. We reviewed some of our work on shape, number, days of the week and months of the year. Next week the students in the PYP will be able to meet on Zoom with their teacher for next year. The details of this meeting will be emailed to you.
P 1/2 Class
Thank you to all who completed the family book project. I am sure that the children are so excited and eager to share them with each other. We will be having Zoom meetings to celebrate our work with each other. The sign-up sheet will be sent to you with the weekly planning Monday morning.
This coming week, as we wrap up with our summative assessment presentations, we will complete our phonics phases as well as our measurement project using the balances you made at home. We will also discuss what small projects we can do to touch people’s hearts during zoom on Monday. Please don’t miss this one because we will need your input before we decide.
This will be our last ‘work’ week of the semester. We have come far and we have done it! A special THANK YOU moms and dads from me. You have been wonderful! Let us push through for this last ‘work’ week and then put our feet up.
This week in P3, we’ve been looking at the different phases of the moon. The students had an activity that they completed at home using balls, balloons and a flashlight. The students drew, named and labeled the different moon cycles and shared them with their classmates during our class Zoom meeting. Students have also been spending time completing their science fiction stories. The stories have all come along very well and I’m very proud of the work they’ve created.
A short reminder to parents to please fill out the Google Form for student reflections, the form can be found here.
Thank you parents and P4 students for a wonderful week. The children had a good time in their weekly catch-up and I have enjoyed seeing their various posts on Seesaw.
This week, our unit task was to look at what man-made systems and natural systems are, as well as systems around us and how they help us in our day-to-day events. Next week, we will wind up by looking at routines, guidelines, people, and tools that have worked together to help us cope during this period of Covid-19. We will put this together to form our final presentation for the year. Also, if parents would like to book an appointment to have an end of year conference with me, I will be sending out details for this to your inbox.
The P5 excelled this week with reading their Coronavirus poems online. We created a poetry reading video that I will soon email to them.
Next week is our last week of work, and it is going to be full of fun and expression. Each class member has been asked to create a short video of gratitude for someone that works in our school community. They will also use their voice to give compliments to one another’s work for this home learning time. Next Tuesday we will meet at 1:00 to record Malala’s Nobel Peace Prize Speech. They should rehearse their paragraph so they are confident with the words.
Next Friday is the final rock party of the year. We will watch a movie over Zoom, have a dance party with the help of you tube, take a tour of bedrooms, read some Ickabog, and play games online. Talent show entries are due by Monday the 15th. Early entries are welcome. We will view this with the P5 from Arusha the last week of school.
This week the P6 children have been looking forward and looking back. One of the challenges of home learning has been to maintain a feeling of community – that we are still one class even though we are working from our homes in different cities and countries. With this in mind this year the children wrote letters to all classmates, both those leaving and those staying. Here are some excerpts:
“We met a VERY long time ago in E.C and we were friends for a very long time. I am so happy that you will be my classmate again this year and I can’t wait for MYP with you.”
“It is going to be so hard to leave each other. You are such a great friend to me.”
“It has been great having you on my primary journey.”
“Now we are starting a new phase and it’s going to be amazing”
“I don’t know how life will be in MYP without you, I wanna say I’m going to miss you man.”
Next week the children will have the opportunity to meet with their MYP homeroom teacher on Zoom. They have just one week of PYP classes left!