As we head into this long weekend, I hope that everyone takes some time to enjoy themselves. For many this can be a hectic time with Internal Assessments, reports and the general end of term activities. This long weekend is a gift of sorts in that it allows us a chance to catch our breath as we head into the last few weeks.
Thank you to those that came to the PTA AGM this past Tuesday. Anna provided a lot of information about the schools recent past and how we are looking financially. There were also elections of new officers, so look for an update in next week’s newsletter about the handover. Thank you to Jenny, Maria and Christine for all their work on behalf of the school.
A couple of items of note for you. The school calendar for the 2020/21 school year is now available on the school website on the publications page.
And lastly from me, you may have noticed some of the building around campus as we prepare for more students in the future. Our biggest project of the year however is just starting. We are planning to add a classroom block between K-hall and the current classrooms. Please see the sample picture below and see more pictures on the board near the art room.
Front view of the proposed design
Conferences and Reports
In the next few days you will be getting the invites to sign up for the conferences. The PYP Conferences will be on the 18th, with no student classes that day. The secondary conferences will be on the 20th starting at 8:30am.
Reports will come out the day before the conference and are only accessible on ManageBac. If you cannot log in as a parent, please contact Grace in the front office or myself to help you.
End of Quarter Assembly
The Assembly will be on Monday October 16th at 10:30am in K-hall. Parents are welcomed to join us on that day.
“Somewhere between the bottom of the climb and the summit is the answer to the mystery why we climb” or so the saying goes. From Saturday to Tuesday this week, I had the “pleasure” of joining 29 MYP and DP students from both campuses on the Level 3 OP Trip to Mount Hanang. It was quite an adventure.
An already long drive out to Hanang was made that much longer when one of our buses got well and truly stuck in the mud. With the help of some local villagers and the ever intrepid teachers, we managed to free the beast after a 3 hour struggle. Our planned diversion to a salt lake was abandoned and we headed to camp. What followed was a night of unseasonal (but becoming more and more familiar) wind and heavy rain.
The wise decision was made the following morning to postpone that day’s ascent and proposed overnight stay at “Camp 2.” Instead, we spent a long day squeezed in our tents at base camp, playing cards, sharing stories ,watching the skies…and eating!
Early the following day, luck shone down on us and a green light was given to climb. The collective decision was made to attempt something that had not been done before, a complete summit ascent and descent back to base camp in one day…and what a day! I checked my watch as we left our tents behind at 6:08am and was amazed when we arrived back at the campsite to see it flashing 6:08pm…12 hours of gruelling trekking!
Although the ascent was relentless and, at times, hair raising, the views from above the clouds were endless and other worldly. To be honest, the descent was far worse for me as I felt like my toenails were about to explode but that is a story for another time!!
On the mountain, I was lucky to be able to spend time with many different students (we did have 12 hours after all!) and it was in these moments that the true power of what it means to be a UWC really hit me. Listening to a Tanzanian student and a Mexican student share their hopes and fears for their homelands, overhearing an Israeli student and a Spanish student share a virtual tour of the cities they call home, helping an Iraqi student and an Italian student collect plastic waste on the way down the mountain to fill their waterproof rucksack liner, learning from a Syrian student about what holiday traditions look and sound like for him, talking about the most popular TV series here or the best selling book there. It was wonderful. Surely, it is in these moments that life long friendships are forged and the hope of the UWC Mission is embedded.
Mount Meru, we’re coming for you next!
Due to recent events, it has been a catch-up week for D1 with many assessments, in the lead up to their first reports. These will be available on ManageBac on Thursday 19th December, you will receive an email with a link to access them. If you are not able to access ManageBac, please let us know. We will have parent conferences on Friday 20th December and the sign up for this will be sent soon. If you are unable to attend, please free feel to email the teachers to discuss your child’s progress.
The D2 students do not have reports for the end of semester as they had them at the end of quarter 1. They have been busy with IA submissions, college applications and preparation for the mock examinations. These start on January 27th and go on for 6 days for most students. They mirror the format of the final examinations, are a chance for students to experience the formality of the examinations and also to find out what they know. The timetable will be issued to them next week.
All diploma students have spent some time this week working on their CAS portfolio. For D2 this is in preparation for their final interview in March and for D1 it is about maintaining a record of what they have done. The group who went to Mount Hanang came back tired but happy on Tuesday and a small group of D1 students are going on the bike trip this weekend.
A reminder that there will be a blood drive to help KCMC on the 13th December. This follows WHO procedures and uses medical professionals. If students are over 18, they may donate. If they are 16 or 17 we need parental permission, the form for this has been sent to students.
Hopefully, many of you will have walked past room 30 and seen our new ‘Untranslatable Words’ display. These are words and phrases collected from around the world that do not have a simple, direct translation into the English language. This demonstrates how the language we speak can shape our interpretation of the world around us, as well as highlighting the beauty of languages!
We would love it if members of the community – staff, students and parents – would add to these. Think of unusual and interesting words or phrases in your language that you think would be a great addition and make some sort of display that we can add to the wall. It can be as simple or as creative as you like. Please hand these to Mr Carson in room 30. We look forward to seeing your words!
James Carson Head of Languages
Another week is close to ending, and as we are now already into the month of December our thoughts are turning to the fast approaching Christmas Holiday.
Despite it being December, rain, quite heavy at times, still persists which has sometimes made campus life and extra-curricular activities somewhat more challenging than normal.
Last Saturday 54 Resident Students and Staff visited the Arusha Christmas Fair, which gave our students a much needed breathing space off campus and chance to attend the Christmas themed market.
On the same Saturday a number of our D1 Resident Students left very early morning to begin their latest OP trip climbing Mount Hanang. The students on this trip returned Tuesday afternoon following a very successful climb.
Early Tuesday morning P6 students left for an overnight camp at ‘Wildtracks’ returning on Wednesday.
For the D1 students, today there is an Economics Field Trip to the TPC Sugar Plantation and on Saturday PYP students plan to perhaps attend a ‘Holiday Fair’ at Kennedy House School.
With the Christmas Holidays fast approaching could I ask Parents/Guardians of our resident students to please forward their child’s/children’s holiday travel details in a timely way to school. In an attempt to simplify the school transport booking process, I would ask that you forward these details to your child’s Residential Parent and not directly to me. You should hopefully be receiving an email from me within the next few days explaining this change in more detail.
For this reason, could I also remind Parents/Guardians of the importance of updating their contact email addresses on a regular basis?
It has been another action-packed week in Residential Life!
From the Counselor
This week was another deep dive into mental health awareness for the M5 students, where we welcomed two amazing local mental health professionals who shared a wealth of information about coping skills and drug awareness. The presentation focused on what causes a shift from mental well being to mental illness, and how people manage stressors in their lives can play an important role. After learning how the brain functions, and the impact of drugs on its proper functioning, the students delved into creating lists of coping strategies they can employ to find healthy ways to lessen the negative effects of stress. Spending time in nature, journaling, listening to music, and progressive muscle relaxation, are just some of the many ideas discussed that M5 students (and you) are encouraged to try over the next week. We are beyond grateful to Ms. Julie and Ms. Lisbeth for their willingness to come and share their expertise with our students. Experts in an array of areas are welcome to present on topics that expand the horizons, as we are always seeking new ways to connect with our community. (More to come on this in future newsletters when a request for experts in a variety of fields will be sought for upcoming events.)
We also welcomed visitors from Memorial University of Newfoundland (Canada) and TanSAO to speak with our students about the benefits of studying in Canada, and the visa process required to make it a reality. Ms. Carolyn O’Keefe provided students with an overview of why Canada is an ideal location for post secondary study, from co-op work opportunities to the multicultural communities that our students are accustomed to in an international school. In addition, we had another virtual presentation with Johns Hopkins University that included an overview of the university and some tips for writing essays for the college application process. This was very timely as our D2 students are in the midst of College Application Month with important deadlines throughout November and into next month. This is a bit of a stressful time for our D2 students, but we know that their hard work will lead to exciting possibilities for their lives after UWC East Africa. This is also a great time for them to practice the healthy coping strategies that our M5s are developing!
If there are any counseling or University related inquiries, please feel free to contact Ms. Ford or Mr. Kileo (counseling) as we are available to provide support to students and/or parents in need.
Parent Teacher Conference The Parent teacher conference is slated for Friday December 20. Parents and/or guardians are encouraged to come and discuss their children’s progress.
Service in the MYP The Day Care Service group attended the graduation ceremony at the Day Care centre on Wednesday Dec 4. Pamoja Tunawaza Service continues assisting with marketing various crafts made by their street children rehabilitation group. They have so far raised approximately Tsh 1 million by marketing and selling the group’s products. The Kea School Service group held a party for the school children in Rafiki Hall. Kiladeda River group is already gearing up to be in charge of the Secret Santa in the next few weeks. They plan to make cards out of recycled paper and plant trees.
M5 PP Timeline The M5 candidates are beginning the final phase of their Personal Projects by refining their reports. They will go home in December with feedback for their final reports. Draft 2 Reports are due by January 17 while final reports will be handed in on January 29, 2020. These reports must be accompanied by the Process Journals and evidence of completed products or outcomes. The grades for the PP will then be submitted to the IB. We request M5 parents to help students remain conscious of this important examination even as they celebrate the holidays.
Well done to our U9 boys, U11 Girls and U11 Boys soccer teams who braved the elements to compete in the last NTSAA soccer tournament for the year. All teams performed very well with wins and draws, unfortunately the weather became too much for the parents, coaches and officials and they had to cancel the end of the tournament so we didn’t get a chance to go to the finals. All reports were that the students had a great time playing games in the rain and that is the most important thing as we continue to develop healthy active lifestyles in our students. A huge thank you to Coaches Mr T, Patrick, Mr Ally, Mr Isaac, Oliver and Antje for all their hard work and dedication to the students and to the sport this semester, the skill development of our teams has come along very well.
Leopard Sharks News Update
28-30 November: CANA Zone 3 Meet – Nairobi, Kenya
Last week, 3 swimmers from the UWCEA Moshi Campus: Maria Bachmann, Delhem Rashid & Sil Kleinveld and one swimmer from the Arusha Campus: Avalon Fischer, swam under the Tanzanian flag at the CANA Zone III competition in Nairobi, Kenya. 9 countries incl. South Africa & Zambia competed with Team Tanzania taking 3rd place!
7-8 December: TZ National Junior Championships – Dar es Salaam
We wish our young swimmers: Eli & Isabel Renju, Malveer & Simreet Dhani, Aiden & Khari Mtuy, Sahil Chauhan, Ciara Marsh, Imani & Kamilli Donnelly & Tabea Rathke all the best at the upcoming gala in Dar!
Semester 2 Events
Our sports calendar falls quiet now for a few weeks as we prepare for the break but kicks off almost immediately after the holiday with the rescheduled U19 Girls soccer tournament to take place on the 18th January at UWCEA Arusha Campus. Followed by U13, U15 & U19 netball the weekend after that.
As we near the end of a busy and tiring semester, remember to keep exercising. It will make you feel better and energize you to help you get to the end.
We have had a great week and lots of learning connections from our students. The P6s were out at Wild tracks in Usa River, and returned all smiles. They shared with me that the camp went very well and they enjoyed spending a night with their counterparts from Arusha.
We also had Mrs June Lincoln from TPC, coming into P2/3 to interact with the children through greetings and songs as well as listened to the story of “Zékéyé et le serpent python.” Thank you so much Mrs Lincoln.
In the coming week, there will be no classes on Monday as it is Independence Day.
There will be Parent Teacher Conferences on the 18th of December. Do sign up on the “Meet the teacher” online sheet once you get the email from Mr. Cofer.
Friday 13th December is a spirit day organized by our newly elected Student Voice. The theme is pajama day!
Those of us with older primary children will recognise the ‘hands on’, ‘inquiry based’ and ‘child led’ nature of the teaching and learning occurring within our school.
‘Inquiry’, ‘child led’ and ‘hands on learning’. Sounds a lot like exploration through play? In fact, as we continue to learn more about the structures and processes within the human brain through pioneering research in neuroscience, we find that these terms are to some extent interchangeable in terms of their effect on learning and brain architecture.
Neuroscientist and educational researcher Anne Juola-Rushton states that:
“Social and emotional development takes shape in the early years as children are naturally inclined to explore, discover, play and to make connections between self, others and their learning environment. Through these interactions, children form their perception of themselves and others in the world” (Rushton, Juola-Rushton, 2010)
In the picture we see a student who is beginning to move from mark making to forming first letters, in this case of her own name. She has been encouraged to experiment by watching and copying her peers, for example when taking ‘details’ of sick animals on a clip-board during role playing in our vets clinic. She’s supported and encouraged both at home and within school. Our student was quietly proud of the work, and from the picture you can imagine a range of emotions as she begins to develop a perception of herself as a young writer. These earliest perceptions and experiences are building new structures and architecture within the brain… structures that will be inform and affect later learning.
P 1/2 Class
We learned how to make and use pictograms this week. The children got into groups of two, generated questions of their choice with up to 4 choices for people to choose from. What challenged us the most was choosing a key for our pictograms that matched our question and that was relatively easy for everyone to draw. You should be able to see our results in the classroom on Tuesday. Next week, we will begin asking the question, ‘What cycles occur naturally all around us?’ The meaning of cycles should be an interesting one for us to look into.
We would like to say thank you to Mr. Ally Hassani who came to give the children an art lesson early Tuesday afternoon. Please see the picture. They enjoyed his lesson very much and created some stunning drawings using markers. You can view their sketchbooks anytime when you pass our class.
Thank you also to P4 for sharing their simple machines with us on Thursday. The children left their presentation with a need to build and so we took time to build our own personal creations out of lego. Some added a few more items to their creations as well. These can be found on the shelf in our classroom for they will be adding things to them as they wish.
Just a quick reminder to send in library books on Tuesday as Monday will be a public holiday.
Hi! This is Gus taking over reporting on our week in P3. We have had such a tiring week because we’ve done so much work. We have worked on challenging holiday word problems which had us adding, multiplying and grouping different things. Some of us decided that we were going to challenge ourselves and work with money.
We have also started our new unit about water. We’re feeling excited about this unit. We brainstormed different experiments that we can do about water. Our central idea is “water is essential to life on Earth” so we decided to draw all the different forms of life that we know that need water.
Ms. Elisha made us pull our hair out by making us write, peer edit, revise, create a neat copy and illustrate our stories about urban problems in the future. We started the long I sound on Monday for spelling.
EC decided that they were going to come into our class and put on the song Dance Monkey and have a dance off with us. That was cool!
The students’ hard work has paid off as they showcased their learning through models and experiments they did. Thank you to all the parents that could make it to the unit celebrations.
We will be starting a new unit of inquiry. The Central Idea is “Rituals, traditions and artefacts are an expression of our beliefs and values.” The students are encouraged to bring in a traditional artefact to school for show and tell in the coming week.
We will be working on data handling in Math, where we will collect, record and share our information in different ways. In Language, we will focus on myths and study why different cultures shared the stories they did.
Friday, the 13th of December, P4s will be presenting their learning in the Primary Gathering in Rafiki Hall from 7:35 to 8:00a.m. You are welcome.
Parent Teacher Conferences will be on the 18th of December. Do remember to sign up online once the email has been sent to you by Mr. Cofer.
I wish you all a Happy Independence Day.
This week in the P5 classroom we started our new unit on how we harness a variety of forces to make things move. In art, we saw how gravity pulls paint down the paper towards the Earth’s surface. During U of I, we discovered how the texture of an object’s surface affects speed due to friction by exploring different sloped objects on the playground and rolling a marble down the object. We also looked at magnetic force by exploring the different qualities of magnets. In math we will be finishing our unit on probability and collecting data within the next week.
As a reminder we will be going on our camping trip Thursday the 12th and returning Friday the 13th. We will visit the OP store on Tuesday.
Good luck to our Jr. National swimmers as they compete in Dar es Salaam this weekend! Have a wonderful and safe holiday weekend.
The highlight of this past week was our camp with our Arusha counterparts at Wildtracks, Usa River (see photo.) The children had so much fun making new friends, playing in the garden and singing around a campfire. We had an informative guided walk to the coffee fields and saw how coffee beans are harvested and processed. On our last morning Ms. Beate taught everyone how to make a cappuccino and an iced coffee – the children were enthusiastic baristas! We are already looking forward to getting together with P6 Arusha for our Exhibition retreat in February (details to follow later.) Next week we will start to carry out independent research on the anatomy of plants, plant uses and the importance of plant conservation. We will also learn about food chains and food webs. In maths we will continue with our work on multiplication and division. We will make good use of the school’s new subscription to Mangahigh.com and practice some of these skills online. Be sure to check out the wonderful P6 flower paintings on the breezeway when you are next on campus. On Friday it will be pyjama day. Enjoy the long weekend!