28th February 2014
I hope TBS families had a good half term break and that all the students who went out the week before half term enjoyed their expeditions. This week was Year 4s turn to embark on an expedition and next week Year 1 will go on their camping trip. From my experience with Year 5 at Chitwan, I feel that these residential trips are a very worthwhile pursuit. Children and students learn some of the wider skills that will stand them in good stead in the future. Some of these skills are simple ones such as learning how to be independent and to organise themselves, to carry their own luggage, and how to be polite and respectful to other adults who help them during the course of their adventures. Whereas other skills are deep and very challenging. Skills such as working in teams, getting along well with others, being resilient, and reflecting on the differences between our lives and those of people in different areas of Nepal can all lead to some profound long term learning.
On a different note, this week we said goodbye to Jyoti Jha, our Year 1 teaching assistant, who leaves TBS to set up her own pre-school with her family. Whilst we are sad to say goodbye, this is a great opportunity and we wish Jyoti and Mrs. Debaka Joshi, her successor, the best of luck in their new roles.
And also, please find enclosed, Term Dates for the academic year 2014/15.
Follow @TbsKathmandu on twitter.com
We are up to double figures in twitter followers and we try to post a daily picture of something interesting happening in school. I am keen for others to see the progress I am making as both an iPhone photographer and a writer of concise descriptions of school highlights in less than 140 characters. Follow @TbsKathmandu to be part of the exclusive and well-informed group.
Education UK Universities Fair
Year 12 students attended the Education UK universities' fair at the Hotel Everest on Tuesday. With around 30 institutions from across the UK represented - including Nottingham, Leeds and Warwick - it was a great opportunity for our students to ask questions of staff from some of the world's best universities. We also hosted the University of Warwick at TBS on Thursday, for an individual presentation and question session. It was great to meet all the visitors and make contacts, including a promise of a personal visit from Nottingham in September! Year 12 parents and students should stay posted for more news on university applications in future.
Year 4 Lubhu trip
The feedback from Year 4 was very positive about their camping expedition this week. They undertook an arduous but rewarding trek, embarked on nature walks, made a campfire and toasted marshmallows whilst singing campfire songs. It sounds idyllic! At least it was until the weather turned on Thursday and they were forced to retreat an hour earlier than planned. Even so I am sure it will linger long in their memories as a vivid part of their TBS experience.
Year 2 ICIMOD trip
Year 2 had an amazing field tip to ICMOD this week. ICIMOD has beehives and during the visit class parent Naomi Saville (who is an expert in bees) opened one of the hives for the children to take a look! They were able to see the queen bee, honey combs, bee larva and the bees returning to the hive with their ‘baskets’ full of pollen to feed their young larva. The children also enjoyed a tour of the park learning about sustainable living in mountainous regions. A fun and fascinating day was had by everyone. A special thanks to Naomi Saville for supporting the trip and Year 2’s study of mini-beasts!
Year 6 ask the experts about Climate Change!
Year 6's classroom was visited today by a panel of experts in the field of their current topic: climate change. Our professional scientist, geographer and environmentalist fielded questions that ranged from "how do typhoons form?" to "what can we do to stop climate change?" We learned the difference between global warming and climate change, that greenhouse gases are actually good (as long as there aren't too many) and, probably our favourite discussion, what will happen to polar bears in the future. Best question is awarded to Mayon, who asked if humans would be able to adapt to extreme weather. Many thanks to our experts: Mr. Dunwell, Mr. Rigby and Mr. Rowe for spending time with us. We have a lot to think about!
Rubbish assembly (about litter!) for Nursery, Foundation and Year 2
Nursery, Foundation and Year 2 came together for an Assembly where they learnt all about Litter. Children were very keen to talk about where they have seen litter and how it affects animals, their habitats and the environment. The 3 classes discussed different initiatives around the world where children are coming together to pick up litter. They then went out into the playground to tidy up the litter that had mysteriously appeared! This resulted in a beautiful and clean environment for everyone to play in. There are some great books in the library to support children in understanding how they can protect their environment. All great preparation for next week…………!
Next week is our Eco week where we think about all things environmental. There are lots of interesting, challenging and exciting things happening in lessons but here are some of the whole school highlights for the children/students:
How much do you know about the exciting eco-things our school does? Do you know where things get composted? Did you know we had a herb garden? Use orienteering skills to navigate around the school and find where everything is!
In small groups, the challenge is to build the tallest tower using only 10 recycled items. No glue is allowed to be used, and only 20cm of tape per group. [Perhaps you could recycle some string as one of the items!] The tallest tower from each class will go into the finals – the tallest tower in each key stage will win a prize!
No Paper Day
Next Friday (7th March) is going to be no paper day! No books, no photocopies, no library! Can you last a whole day with no paper in your classroom? [if not, can you manage at least one lesson?]
How Eco is your class? How many of you walk or cycle every day? How many of you have food wrapped in paper rather than plastic? Do you bring fruit rather than crisps for your snack [compostable rather than crisp packets]? Over the week we’re going to keep a special eco-register to find the most eco-class in Primary!
Cycle or walk to school day on Friday
What better week to have a walk/cycle to school day than this one. Even if you must drive to school why not walk the last half-mile (or even the last mile) on Friday morning to limit your own journey carbon footprint.
From 2.30pm on Friday there is a festival to celebrate all things environmental. Students, parents and friends of the school are all invited and there will be stalls and various refreshments on sale.
Continued investment and improvement to the current school site
We continue to move slowly but relentlessly forward with obtaining quotes for various improvements to the current site including resurfacing our AstroTurf/playing field and for an improved play area for primary children. Over the holidays we have made further improvements to the school site including creating new office space, improving the bike shed covering and parking area and further developing our ICT infrastructure. We are also investigating the possibility of installing two lightweight primary classrooms onto the site so that we have a touch more teaching space and leasing the building across the road from our current site to enable some space for Sixth Form students. With all these developments we will move ahead carefully, checking with architects and experts that all building improvements are as safe as possible. I will provide some regular updates in the newsletter and perhaps be able to discuss any progress at the next PTA meeting.
Saturday (8th March 2014)
We have many talented students in the school who take on wider roles in the Kathmandu community. Next week one of them, Kristina Allen will take part in the Women in Concert event that takes place on International Women’s day (8th March) to support the campaign to stop violence against women and children. Those who have heard Kristina sing in many of the school events and productions will be aware of her talent and this is an opportunity to hear her sing to support a very important cause. For more details see the Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/WomenInConcert.
U13 FOBISIA games
Our small but talented FOBISIA team leaves for Kota Kinabalu next week accompanied by Mr. Rigby. I am sure they will have a fantastic time, compete well and come back better athletes than they were when they set off. With the forthcoming Primary games we will have competed in 2 overseas FOBISIA events, undertaken the schools first rugby tour and organised a FOBISIA event. For a small school such as TBS to be taking part in this number of events is very promising and I thank the parents for their support and for staff who have been willing to give up holidays and weekends to support such events. The students appear to be greatly enjoying their sporting experiences so I hope this interest and support continues.
Year 1 Hattiban and camping trip
An exciting week for Year 1 when they go to Hattiban and camp out on the school grounds. I am sure they will have a great experience and it will be fun to see how they get on.
Future events and dates for the diary
Upcoming meetings, Parents consultations and Evenings
There are a number of important parent teacher consultations and meetings. The full list of events can be found on our website. On 10th March there is a Year 9 Parent consultation meeting and on 10th & 11th March there are Primary Parent Teacher meetings. Timings and a fuller list of events can be found on the website www.tbskathmandu.org.
Thank you also to the PTA who met this week to talk through contributions to the Eco Fair, Quiz Night and various other events. The next meeting is on March 20th and everyone is welcome to come along.
TBS Charity Fashion Show for Dhading – Friday 14th March
The Young Enterprise group are organising a fashion show on 14th March. It starts at 7pm (and finishes by 9pm) and will take place at the Hotel Annapurna. The cost of tickets is 2000NRS per person and this includes unlimited complimentary snacks, a free drink, 15% discount on Kashmere products, a gift bag and even some free chocolate! Tickets go on sale at school from Monday. All profits will go to the Sixth Form Dhading charity.
Year 8 Holi celebration charity fundraiser – Friday 14th March
Also on 14th March, Year 8 are organising a Holi celebration which will entail 15 minutes of fun for those primary and secondary students who would like to join in. It will take place on the school field after the primary assembly (2.30pm) and at 2.45pm for secondary students. More details will follow in assemblies but essentially 100NRS will allow children and students to partake in a celebration that involves water and coloured powder. I am told a change of clothes is also required. Risk assessment is still underway but hopefully Year 8 will be able to lead and organise a memorable celebration of Nepali culture.
Quiz Night – Year 11 and PTA event
A reminder that Year 11 are organising a Quiz Night on Friday 21st March from 7-9pm. Entry costs will be 700NRS for adults (and 500NRS for 15-18 year olds). There will be trophies award to the winners but it is about taking part rather than the winning and it should be a fun quiz. The PTA are advising them and helping the students to organise the sale of drinks and finger foods. All profits will go to the Year 11 charity which is Just One (www.just-one.org).
General notice about safety outside school
It seems a while since I wrote about safety outside school and we now have a very smooth road and some good traffic calming measures such as the speed bumps. However, I would still urge all drivers, cyclists and pedestrians to be wary around school as it does get busy between 8am and 8.15am. Drive slowly, be considerate, watch out when opening car doors, crossing the road and cycling into school (please dismount just outside the gate). Thank you in advance for your care.
Have an enjoyable weekend!
PS – All the latest events and other news can be found on the school website www.tbskathmandu.org
Follow daily TBS news on @TbsKathmandu (https://twitter.com/TbsKathmandu and the timeline of www.facebook.com/thebritishschoolkathmandu).