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11 February 2022 - Back To School After CNY Break

11 February 2022 - Back To School After CNY Break

I hope that everybody has been able to spend some quality time with family and friends over the Chinese New Year break and that those who celebrate CNY enjoyed all the festivities.

We ended our week with an assembly dedicated to the Chinese New Year. Our Mandarin department had prepared an excellent celebration in which they allowed our children to showcase their knowledge, skills and understanding related to this tradition.
 
All our age groups produced wonderful videos that were very informative and certainly very enjoyable. Our Masters of Ceremony (MCs) were very eloquent and entertaining. There were a host of presentations that highlighted the different aspects of this important part of the culture.

This was elevated to an international level when the children started to highlight similarities and differences between the different New Year’s celebrations around the world. It really raised levels of international thinking when the children started to describe how festivities are celebrated differently across different cultures, taking the marking of the new year as an example.

This makes for an assembly that truly fits in beautifully with the kinds of learning we wish to take place in our school. As I shared with you in the last newsletter, we strive for excellent learning for our learners and with that, we mean personal, academic and, in this case, quite clearly displayed international learning. This aligns well with the IPC foundation No. 1: learning focused.

But how do we know children are learning and how we can get them to learn even more?
We have an extensive system to profile all our teacher’s efficacy to help children learn, to assess the way they teach. This is both an instrument for quality control but also an aid to support our teachers in their professional development. We strive for a culture in which everybody wants to improve at all times and at all levels. But these systems focus on the teachers. But learning starts obviously with the learners. 

How do we know they are learning?
In school, we have various ways to assess their learning and we will expand on that a bit more in one of the following newsletters. One of the most powerful ways to assess children’s learning is simply by engaging in conversations with them about their learning. We can do that by using some key questions that can get the conversation started.

Some of these questions explore the possible outcomes of learning activities, be it subject, personal or international learning. What has changed? What has been achieved as a result of this learning process?

Questions like:
●What do you know now that you didn’t know before?
●What can you do now that you couldn’t do before? What is your next step?
●How is it connected to other learning? - learning wall - previous Units - Personal Experiences

Other questions for more on the process itself. What was happening? The level of difficulty? Topics like collaboration, choice, instruction, interest, RECIPE, learning tools, learning task, environment and the use of the learning wall.

Questions like:
●What helped you with your learning today?
●What hindered you in your learning today?
●If you were to take part in this lesson again, what would you do differently?
●What would you suggest to your teacher to support you in your learning?
●What really helps me is….

Finally, there should always be room for questions about emotions.
Questions like:
●What surprised you in your learning today? First I thought, Now I think,

From the viewpoint of….
●What questions do you now have about what you learned today?
●What do you want to know more about?
●What did you really enjoy?
●How is this learning important to you, your community or the world?

To encourage even deeper thinking, we could follow each question with “Why?” Or “What makes you say that…?” “Can you give an example of this…?”
We use these questions in our conversations with our learners but these are also very suitable questions for when you want to have a learning focused conversation at home!

Finally, at the end of this letter, let us welcome to our community two new teachers who have joined us this week. Ms. Ila has joined us as a teacher for Ks2. For Ms. Ila it is actually a return to our faculty as she worked here in Puchong before. Ms. Melissa has joined us in our Early Years. We are very glad that they have joined TIS Puchong and wish them lots of success.


Mr. Marco Damhuis (Head of Primary)
Email Contact : marco.damhuis@pc.tis.edu.my

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Taylor's International School Puchong
201101010017 (938156-A)
No.1 Jln BP 14/7, Bandar Bukit Puchong 2,
47120 Puchong, Selangor Darul Ehsan
General Line: +603 8066 3675
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