17 September, 2021

Ms Deirdre Grimshaw: Weekly Update 17/09/2021

Ms Deirdre Grimshaw: Weekly Update 17/09/2021 - ms-deirdre-grimshaw-weekly-update-17-09-2021
Ms Deirdre Grimshaw: Weekly Update 17/09/2021 The weeks are flying by and this week with the addition of our VCCAs, it has been an action packed week during our Virtual Learning.

The weeks are flying by and this week with the addition of our VCCAs, it has been an action packed week during our Virtual Learning.

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We were delighted to see so many children engaging with the opportunities provided by our teaching staff and third party providers for our Virtual Co Curricular Activities.  We hope that everyone enjoyed their first week.  It was great to see some of the parents and siblings joining in with the activities too. Keep it up! Judging by the amazing Baking Club and Art Club pictures, there are wonderful new skills being developed.

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Another focus this week at primary, particularly in our assemblies has been about reading.  As a school, you will know we place a high value on reading. It is the cornerstone on which so much of our learning hinges upon and developing reading skills and fostering a love of reading is incredibly important.

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September is Read a Book Month

As September is ‘Read a Book month’, we took the opportunity this week to make it the focus of our assemblies on both primary campuses. We encouraged all our students, during the assembly, to read more books! Many of our teachers shared their favourite books with the students and we hope, inspired them to pick up a book!

Ms Liz Favourite Book

At this time, when our library at school is not accessible, we wanted to share the e book selection we have as part of our library platform; Destiny. Here  is a link to a step by step guide that Mr Chris has put together  on how to access these books. With 100s of books to choose from, the children can choose a different book every day!

Destiny Library for the Junior Campus - How to access e - books

Ms Mary Favourite Book

On our Virtual Learning Site there is also a brilliant page dedicated to the Library and how to access books online, not just through Destiny.  There are some fantastic platforms available and we encourage all our BIS families to take a look and see the many ways to access texts from your own homes.

BIS HCMC Library Page

How to help your child with reading

support your child in reading

In keeping with the theme of reading, we would like to share this extremely valuable article about how you can help your child with reading at home.  It has some excellent tips for parents and families to develop reading skills and take enjoyment and pleasure from books.  Written by Ms Carli Holbrook, Year 6 Teacher and English Leader  and Mr John Lee, EAL Leader,  it is an excellent reminder and resource for all parents  Click here to read. How to help your child with reading

MFL Webinar for Year 5 and Year 6 Parents

Sophie MFL

Thank you to all the Year 5 and Year 6 parents that attended the MFL Webinar on Wednesday morning.  We hope you found the session useful and informative.  It was great to see such a big turnout.  If you were unable to attend, you can access the session here.

Year 5 and Year 6 MFL Webinar


Junior Campus Executive Student Council 2021 - 2022


This week Mr Anthony Woolley, PSHE Leader, and I, have been interviewing candidates to be part of the Junior Campus Executive Committee.  This team of 8 will meet with me each week to discuss ways we can make positive changes to our school.  It was an extremely difficult decision to whittle the number of students that applied down to 8 as all candidates that were interviewed this week equipped themselves very well in what their ideas were and how their personal attributes would make them good candidates. In the end, we had to choose 8 and these  8 students demonstrated through their applications, interviews and speeches that they do a wonderful job.  Well done to all that tried out. Everyone should be very proud of their efforts.

Blue Dragon Marathon Walk 2021

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We have accepted the challenge and we would like to invite you to do so too! 

A reminder that next week we will be participating as a community in the Blue Dragon Marathon Walk 2021. This international event offers an opportunity to join people from all around the world as we go the distance to raise funds for our community partner Blue Dragon Children’s Foundation.

BIS HCMC has entered three teams, one for each campus, and we are looking forward to having the entire BIS community join us in helping vulnerable Vietnamese youth break out of poverty!

For more than 15 years Blue Dragon Children’s foundation has been providing holistic care for those in need, whether a rural child who has found themselves alone on the streets of Hanoi searching for work, or a young woman who has been trafficked into China as a bride. 

Please join a campus team by clicking here to log your miles and make your donation.  For step-by-step instructions on how to make a donation, please click here.

We would encourage you to also watch this video which features one of the Blue Dragon children telling their story of how the Blue Dragon Children’s Foundation impacted their life.

Thank you for your support.

Tracey Brownrigg
BIS Community Service Project Manager

Welcome to our New Staff!

Each week we will introduce some of the new teachers that have joined our team this year! This week we will learn more about Mr Nick Townsend who has joined the Year 5 team and Ms Marta Fabero  who has joined the MFL Department. A warm BIS welcome to both!

Mr Nick Townsend, Year 5 Teacher

Nicholas Townsend

BSc (Hons) Mathematics, University of Birmingham, UK

BSc (Hons) Economics, University of Leicester, UK

MSc Computer Science, University of Essex, UK

PGCE Primary Education, Newman College, UK

MSc Multidisciplinary Studies (Education), State University of New York, USA

Diploma in TESOL, London Teacher Training College, UK

Nick joined BIS HCMC full-time in 2021, but had been part-time at BIS since 2018 (covering Year Leader preparation days). Since completing his education and teaching in the UK, Nick has worked in Kuwait, Oman, Ukraine, Bangladesh, Ghana, China and Vietnam (at another popular International school). During this time, he has had positions of responsibility for Maths, Science and as Year Group Leader. He is a strong believer of inclusive collaboration for both students and teachers, in order that we can learn from each other. Outside of the classroom, Nick is an active football player who organises games for adults; he is an avid supporter of Leicester City Football Club (his home town). Nick is the number one fan of Leicester's many Indian restaurants. He loves to travel and has been to some eighty-plus countries. During his part-time years at BIS, Nick wrote a children’s book.

Where have you moved to BIS from?

I moved here from another International school here in HCMC.

Why did you move to BIS?

I moved to BIS because of the positive feeling when you enter the campus in both students and teachers.

What has been the best experience for you since arriving in Vietnam?

Travelling in Vietnam to see how beautiful this country really is.

Tell us one fun fact about yourself (hobbies, interests, talents, etc.)

I was once in the Guinness Book of Records for dancing (it's not as impressive as it sounds!)

Ms Marta Fabero, MFL  Teacher

Marta Lopez Fabero

Bachelor’s Degree in Primary Education, Complutense University of Madrid, Spain.

Master’s Degree in Bilingual Education - Foreign Language Immersion, Rey Juan Carlos University of Madrid, Spain.

Certification as Professor and DELE Examiner, Instituto Cervantes Manila, Philippines.

Marta joined BIS HCMC in August 2021. Since completing her Master’s Degree in 2015, Marta has worked in schools in Spain and, most recently, in international schools in Metro Manila, Philippines. Here she was the Lead Teacher in the Spanish Language Immersion Program in Early Years and Primary School. She carried out several multidisciplinary projects that let her students learn how to use the language, being able to understand culture and other contextual aspects that are necessary for effective communication. Also, during her time in the Philippines, she was a professor and examiner at the Instituto Cervantes, preparing high school students and adults for the DELE certification.

In her spare time, Marta is an avid reader whose preference drifts towards science fiction. She also enjoys listening to music and dancing lindy hop. Her passion for traveling and nature allows her to discover new places and meet different cultures.

Where have you moved to BIS from?

I was teaching in Metro Manila, Philippines

Why did you move to BIS?

To join a great international school community, in an unknown country with a rich culture to discover.

What has been the best experience for you since arriving in Vietnam?

I enjoyed my first pho at the IBIS hotel. I got a glance of what HCMC looks like during the short trip from Ibis to Imperia. I love the view of the pagoda from my apartment, it makes these last days of quarantine much more bearable.

Tell us one fun fact about yourself (hobbies, interests, talents, etc.)

I am a Potterhead! You know what I am wearing on World Book Day.

Primary PTG Update

We continue to encourage our parents to be an active member of our PTG group.  One way is to volunteer as a class or country rep. Thanks to all those that have volunteered so far. We have a great turnout of parents.   It’s never too late so please click on the links below  if you would like to be a class or country rep.

Class rep Sign Up

Country rep Sign Up

This month, the PTG team is planning a workshop related to the upcoming Moon Festival. If you would like to be part of this workshop or have ideas to share, please don’t hesitate to contact us. Our email  is primaryptgbis@gmail.com 

 Enjoy your weekend and hope to see more sign ups.

 Thank you,

Gayatri Shankar Primary PTG Coordinator 

Dates for diary

21/09/21              Moon Festival Celebrations

29/09/21              EAL Webinar for EAL Parents

15/10/21              Virtual Co-Curricular Activities: Block 1 Ends

16/10/21-            Half-term break

25/10/21              School Begins after the Half Term Break

And Finally…

I would like to highlight the post above about the Blue Dragon Walk a Marathon.  At this time, when Vietnam is struggling, it is an ideal way for us to ‘give back’ to our amazing host nation. We hope all of our school community will get involved.

Also a reminder that we will celebrate Moon Festival as a school this coming Tuesday.  Children are encouraged to wear their Ao Dai to lessons and celebrate this special time in Vietnam’s Calendar.

Have a safe and restful weekend.

Deirdre Grimshaw
Headteacher of Junior Campus