Over the last few weeks Moshi has been a place of very intense emotions. With the passing of Faith, the community felt great sorrow and I thank all of you that contacted us with your support during this time. It demonstrated to me again how close knit the community is here. As you see below, we will have a tribute to Faith on Friday.
Due to this tribute please also note that we have changed the date of the planned blood drive to Friday December 13th. Please come on that day and donate as there is a great need in the region.
As you can also see below, this past weekend was our 19th Sports Weekend and my 4th. I must say that despite the rain and record number of people, this weekend went as smoothly as any of the past ones. To those out there in the community that helped to make this true, I thank you very much and pass on the thanks from the visiting schools that expressed how much they enjoyed the weekend. Events like this take more than a few people to make them work, so thank you to all the parents, staff and students that worked behind the scenes and an extra thank you to the PE department for all of the planning that went into this event.
On a final note, we have the PTA AGM next Tuesday evening December here in Moshi. Please join us as we look back at the last year and look ahead to next year.
Please remember that on Friday from 2pm until about 3:30pm we will have a Memorial tribute to Faith Yona looking at her contribution to the school and greater community. The community is welcome for this tribute.
This past weekend twelve visiting schools joined Arusha campus here in Moshi for the 19th annual Sports Weekend. There were about 800 secondary students involved in rugby, football, basketball, netball, tennis, swimming, volleyball, ultimate frisbee and cross country. Sports started at 12:30pm on Friday and the last game wrapped up at about 1:30pm on Sunday. Despite the great weather on Friday, Saturday afternoon we were gifted with significant rain. While the spirits of the kids did not dampen, the fields quickly became a lot more muddy. To those that came, thank you for your participation, there were many great examples of sportsmanship over the three days. We look forward to seeing you for number 20 in 2020.
19 years of Sports Weekends at Moshi
The closing ceremony at 2pm with lots of tired students and teachers.
Blood Drive – New Date
This week, in the Primary School, we introduced the “Cool Calm Kids” initiative. The aim is to empower students (and adults!) with strategies to resolve conflicts and promote prosocial interactions. The approach allows students to respond to teasing, persistent name calling, “bossy behaviour” and so on, in an assertive but fair way.
We all respond differently in certain situations and, often, these responses go one of two ways. Either we become angry or we retreat into ourselves. Cool Calm Kids suggests we should strive to be neither an “angry alligator” or a “scared mouse” but, rather, a Cool Calm Kid!
Someone who takes control of a situation by standing tall, looking people in the eye and not using mean words. This is coupled with a three step response that students can adopt when faced with situations that make them feel uncomfortable, upset or threatened:
In addition, students can use these steps when they see someone else in a situation that makes them feel uncomfortable. A whole school approach like this gives us a common language by which we can deal with friendship issues and learn a range of non-violent strategies to deal with peer pressure that are aligned with the ethos of our school.
It would be great if you could reinforce this at home and, together, we can make sure UWCEA remains a safe place for everyone, where we all feel valued and where everyone promotes and encourages a culture of shared responsibility for each other’s wellbeing and a collective duty of care.
This has been a difficult couple of weeks for our diploma students but I have been so impressed by the support they have given to each other and the staff. The D2 students have also shown considerable maturity in their attitude to deadlines despite everything else that is going on.
Last weekend saw many of the Diploma students involved in Sports Weekend; some of our new D1 think it was so good we should do it every quarter, maybe if they organise it. Students got a chance to play multiple sports and to meet old friends and to make new ones. The weekend of the 6th, 7th and 8th of December we are planning on taking a group of Diploma and Upper MYP students to the village of Nanga, about half an hour away from Moshi. They will be working at the primary school there, painting the classrooms inside and out and on Saturday cooking lunch for the community.
Our other service projects continue and I will share updates in a future newsletter.
An interesting piece of good news. Barbara from D1 has written an article about the current situation in Chile, where she is from, and this has been published. The article can be read here. We encourage other students to contribute articles to the same site.
Currently our M4 students are engaged with the Arusha students on the IDU trip on West Kilimanjaro. They are expected back Friday afternoon.
The M5 students are currently moving along with their personal project. If you see them please ask how they are doing and help us support them in their projects.
This weekend many of the residential students will be heading to Arusha to visit the Arusha Christmas Fair. This is a social activity more than a shopping trip for most students as they will see others from Arusha campus and other friends from Sports weekend.
If you have not done so, please send us any travel information you have for the December break so we can plan effectively. We would like all information in by Thursday December 12th.
Well done to the Primary team for all the great work that has gone into the current unit we are winding up. We had very impressive presentations from the P6s on their energy unit. They showcased their learning through a display of things that move using wind, electricity and hydro power. We also saw chemical reactions from a mixture of vinegar and baking soda, how thermal energy creates movement in the air and changes in energy from potential to kinetic energy.
The gathering led by Mr. Ben on becoming a “Cool, calm kid” was very informative and the students learned some tips on what to do if/when someone is being mean. It is work in progress to equip the children with the strategies shared and if we work together both at home and in school we will be able to achieve desired results. As a follow up, most children watched “Inside Out” an animation about a child and how she dealt with various emotions that she went through after moving from her hometown. Thank you Ms Kacey for this wonderful idea, the children loved it.
It might be worth watching this movie with your child/ren and hearing the discussions that come up as a way of promoting self-control and responsible behavior.
All the Primary children are working towards the PYP Sharing Assembly which will be held on Friday, 29th from 7:45 a.m. on the green outside K-Hall. You are all welcome.
From the Counselor
Reinforcing Healthy Habits
Our community continues to deal with a range of emotions related to death, stress, relationship concerns, and a variety of other concerns. This is a time when some may find it easy to resort to less than healthy ways to deal with stressors. However, we need to take time to explore and discuss what we are feeling and the best ways to express emotions that are beneficial to creating long term mental and physical health. One important habit to reinforce is gratitude as we all take some time to reflect on and demonstrate appreciation to others who have touched our lives in big and small ways. As a staff, we find ourselves extremely grateful for all of the support that we have received from our community during these difficult days, and the many ways that empathy has been displayed. Gratitude goes beyond just being a nice thing to do, but is actually an important part of a healthy and positive lifestyle. A recent article from Harvard Medical School article highlighted some of the major benefits of gratitude, which included decrease in doctor visits, more optimisim about life, increased productivity, and improved relationships. In addition, they suggested ways to express gratitude that can be easily become a healthy habit at any age (link to article and suggestions for ways to express gratitude).
What new ways can you express gratitude today?
As always, if you have any concerns about your child’s mental well being, please feel free to contact Ms. Ford or Mr. Kileo to discuss further. Thank you, and wishing you a mentally healthy week!