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This week in the classroom - Delighting the senses with chocolate

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Behaviour for Learning at NACIS
Pride and respect from all for all. These are values that we aim to instil in all of our students to ensure that they develop a strong moral sense and a self-awareness of how their actions and behaviours have an impact on others. As part of the curriculum, Homeroom Teachers, Form Tutors and subject teachers remind students the behaviour for learning that they should demonstrate at all times. To support positive behaviour for learning at NACIS, we reward positive learning behaviours and attributes. Bilingual PHSE sessions led by the Homeroom Teachers also ensure that the students are developing an understanding of their feelings and emotions, as well as discussing the importance of following the correct learning behaviours. Please check your inbox for further information about 'Behaviour for Learning' in your child's stage of learning and how the school and parents can support our school's ethos of pride and respect.

Primary News

Lower Primary

Grade 2 - Delighting the senses with chocolate
Since our return from Golden Week, Grade 2 have immersed themselves fully in their new theme, ‘Chocolate’! This theme has so far provided students with an opportunity to explore countries which import and export chocolate and the students are busy researching for and preparing their home learning projects about one of these countries. Students' study has now moved on to the history of chocolate and they are finding out about the Mayans and how they lived 2800 years ago. Students are comparing the way they lived in their civilization to the way we live today in Shanghai. Continuing with the theme of chocolate, English learning is centered on the Roald Dahl classic, ‘Charlie and the Chocolate Factory’. This is giving students the opportunity to discuss their opinions of characters, which is developing their vocabulary as well as providing inspiration for their written work.

In maths class, students began to touch division. They learned the meaning of division and participated in a number of activities to further enhance their understanding. Classroom discussion and independent thinking have all helped to cultivate and understanding and appreciation for maths. Grade 2 have made a very promising start to the year so far!

Upper Primary

Digging for dinosaurs with Grade 3
Students in Grade 3 were given goggles, gloves, tools and a block of plaster to introduce the new thematic topic 'Footprints from the past'. Students then worked collaboratively, using their thinking and risk-taking skills to dig and scrape away at the plaster to reveal a dinosaur fossil. Thus, they realised excitedly, that their new topic is all about dinosaurs: Footprints from the Past. The students had just taken on the role of palaeontologists, carrying out an archaeological dig.

The students in Grade 3 have become inquirers, using iPads to research the different periods of the Mesozoic Era: Triassic, Jurassic, and Cretaceous. They also discovered what the climate and landscape was like in the different periods, as well as which dinosaurs existed. They were amazed to find out the length of time dinosaurs were on Earth, compared to humans so far.

This topic has been a fantastic link to their English learning where they have written instructions on how to dig for dinosaur fossils. The students have also been able to use their dinosaur vocabulary in an imaginative context as they read and enjoyed the story ‘Dinosaur Dreams.’

Secondary News

Creative learning links with Grade 8
The week got off to a great start last Monday and Tuesday as students had the opportunity to collaborate with Ms. Hilary Easton, Director of Global K – 12 Dance Program at Juilliard in New York. Ms. Easton led Grade 8 students into an exploration of movement ideas related to sports and created rhythmic patterns using their own body as a percussion instrument. The students received wonderful feedback from the workshop, which will certainly inspire them to take more risks in future endeavors.

In STEAM class, Grade 8 have been working on an ongoing interdisciplinary project in which they will design realistic bases and transport for living on Mars. Throughout this project, the students have been improving their research skills and applying realistic technology and proven science of today to help a team of humans survive on Mars. Currently, they are in the last stages of the project; their end goal will be to create a scientific poster and to present their plans to their Houses. While working on this project, the students have been building on their teamwork and leadership skills, as they have had to deal with various problems and find their own unique solutions.

Grade 8 has also been working on an interesting project in History, based on the discovery of ancient regional civilization. Students have been concentrating on the ancient regional civilizations of Egypt, Mesopotamia and India. Students are collaborating in groups to compare different cultures, climates and achievements of civilization, linking what they have learned about other ancient countries.

In Chinese and English class, Grade 8 students have been analyzing different types of literature. The students learned three poems from the Song Dynasty in Chinese class and have continued their preparations for the ‘31st Shanghai Secondary Students' Composition Contest’ in which they will soon participate. In English class, the students are enjoying studying the popular novel ‘Holes’ by Louis Sachar and are currently working in groups analyzing character profiles, evaluating quotations from the text and building on their descriptive writing techniques.

In other language news, Grade 8 students are learning how to talk about sports, leisure activities and active holidays in their French classes. They will soon learn different body parts to enable them to communicate about sport injuries. Bravo!

In Homeroom, Grade 8 students are continuing their discussion of responsibility, this week focusing on making good choices. The students have made a big effort recently to display responsible behaviour around the school and in their social lives, paying particular attention to being good role models for younger students. So far, they have been very successful and we wish them the very best of luck moving forward.

Cultivating musical creativity with Grades 10 and 11
 Grade 10 music students have started the academic year by exploring alternative ways to be musically creative. This has included creating graphic scores based on works drawn from the Juilliard Creative Classroom, and using these scores as a guide to create a free composition. They have also been working towards forming their skills in effective research and academic writing, along with learning how to critically reflect. They have used the graphic scores as a starting point here. These skills will be indispensable when it comes to undertaking any creative or academic project.
 
Our Grade11 Music class has been working on MLI (Musical Link Investigation Paper), preparing a portfolio for music CAS, and practicing two pieces of song which they will record for their SL level performance assessment. The samples of MLI are investigated, and prescribed works (Bach and Kodály) are discussed with videos and analytical research papers by specialists.  Recently, students have been working on the skills to understand the questions from the Listening Test (Unknown Pieces).