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This week in the classroom - Thematic Week

11 December 2017

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Primary News

Primary Thematic Week

Last week Primary students participated in a Thematic Week designed to help students consolidate their learning of recent thematic topics. We share an update from each grade including the various fun and interactive activities as well as the learning outcomes for the students.

Grade One
As the current Grade 1 thematic topic is ‘The Magic Toymaker’, the Grade 1 students spent last week creating a tree house for a lego man character. The students loved our trip to LEGOLAND Discovery Center so we used this to inspire the students. The students began the week by planning and designing their tree houses, students used their imagination to think of creative ideas for what they wanted to include, including slides, elevators and swimming pools. Next, the students began the making process, they visited the junk model shop to buy the objects they needed and built their models using a range of materials and tools. This was not always easy and their plans had to be adapted when they did not work out. Finally, the students presented and evaluated the topic. The students thought very carefully about the questions, ‘What did I do well?’ and ‘What could I have done better?’.

Grade Two
Last week, Grade Two enjoyed an exciting week of activities to bring their ‘Chocolate’ topic to a close. The students were grouped together in their House teams to take part in a variety of different challenges. It was wonderful to see the students make new friendships and build their teams. They have made story books in their Chinese sessions, models in their Math sessions, made posters and used the green screen in their English sessions, explored magnets in STEAM and even made a chocolate cake! The students carried out all tasks in a mature and collaborative way- a great week for Grade Two!

Grade Three
Last week, Grade 3 worked in groups to design, create and evaluate their very own dinosaur museums!

They used drawings and floorplan software on the laptops to create a bird’s-eye view floor plan of their museum. They researched the facilities that they wanted in their museum, such as toilets, gift shops and cafes, and also planned the exhibitions they would have.

Then, using air-dry clay, they built their museums before reflecting on their designs and making any final changes. Finally, they created an advertisement for their museums using green screens and the iPads.

Grade 3 had a fantastic week, they worked extremely well in their teams, using their productivity, creative thinking and collaborative skills!

Grade Four
Grade 4 enjoyed an activity-filled week where they continued with their unit of work on ‘Space Explorers’.
For the first two days, students concentrated on constructing a range of different rockets. The instructions were very detailed and some of the parts involved were very intricate. The students did a marvelous job and also produced extremely informative factfiles to accompany each rocket. We are now a lot more familiar with the Soyuz FG and the Vostok K which carried the first human into space, Yuri Gagarin.
Following this, all Grade 4 students worked in groups to plan, design and make a planet of their own. This made for some very interesting and creative outcomes. They really enjoyed using a range of different everyday items like shaving foam, cotton wool and plasticine to recreate the landscape on their planet. All that was then left to do was to promote this planet to potential ‘space tourists’.
Overall, an action-packed week in Grade 4 where the students had the opportunity to display their 21st century thinking skills.

Grade Five
Last week was truly a landmark week for Grade 5. Their product challenge gave the students a truly unique opportunity to test their strategic thinking and also to allow them to show off their creativity. At the start of the week, the students were handed a bilingual brief with the following the Learning Intention of ‘To create a Christmas decoration’. A simple idea, with a purposeful aim; the students were to sell their final products to other students, with all contributions being donated to recent school fundraising initiatives. Throughout the week, the students tested their research skills, collaboration, communication and much more. With an effective reflection across the Grade it has been an experience which the students will continue to learn from moving forward.

Secondary News

Grade 7 Academic Overview
In recent English classes, students have recently sat a comprehension assessment based on the books they have been reading together in class. Students have shown a growing ability to retrieve, understand and analyse information from these texts. These are skills that are imperative to their future development in English.
As well as the comprehension assessments in class, students are being reminded that they are expected to submit a minimum of two book reviews by the end of the semester , and with that date fast approaching it is important that students are fully engaged with an English text outside of the class.
Finally, much of the teaching has turned to a focus on students’ speaking ability and pushing them to use more and more English in class to help develop their spoken vocabulary and pronunciation. After the Winter break, they will begin their new topic titled ‘Curiosity’ and they should be looking out for a vocabulary list that will be coming to help them prepare for this topic. This will be available on firefly (our new online learning tool) alongside many other recent resources.

Meanwhile, in recent Chinese lessons, students continue to work on their analytic text skills by focusing on two articles from their current unit. The texts entitled ‘The Oil Peddler’ and ‘Ventriloquism’ show the extraordinary determination and resilience of ancient Chinese society through the author’s unique writing style.  It is in this way that students are able to enhance their cultural understanding and historical knowledge through literature.
In Geography, Grade 7 students have recently started learning the regional geography of China. Students have been encouraged to draw on their existing knowledge of Chinese landscapes and use topographic maps to locate different areas of terrain. Students are now working in groups to make their own topographic models and show with classmates. It will be interesting to see if classmates are able to identify different areas according to their classmates’ maps.
In PE classes, the Grade 7 girls completed their Handball lunch House tournament last week with Honesty finishing in first place - a great effort from all the girls involved! It has been great to see this student led initiative come to life and for the students to get behind it with so much commitment and enjoyment. The boys are competing in House Basketball competitions during lunch time this week.
Recently, Grade 7 students have finished learning about algebraic factorisation. It is another important step in exploring their mathematical knowledge after grasping algebraic operations. With their new found knowledge, students are not only able to simplify many complicated expressions, but they have also made a solid foundation for learning equations and functions at a later stage.
In History classes, students continue learning about the cultural exchanges between Northern and Southern dynasties from the Tang dynasty by analyzing the relationship between the cultural development of ancient China and the central government. Students are reading different historical materials, extracting key information, comparing different views, categorizing historical facts, and summarizing their own views.
In French classes, students have been reviewing the perfect tense (le passé compose) and learnt a useful song to help them remember this grammar point better. Learning by song is a great way for students to consolidate knowledge and can be applied to other areas of learning.

Grade 7 have engaged well in their learning to this point and we are looking forward to continuing on their learning journey together.

Studies in IB Group 1 - Language and Literature

Grade 11
Recently, the Grade 11 students have been learning the topic-‘Language in the Cultural Context’. After reading some texts on "Language and Gender", the students developed great interest in further exploring this issue, so they conducted a Further Oral Activity (FOA) titled “Gender Forum”. The students took on different roles and expressed their views as an advertiser, a radio programme editor, a TOK teacher and a female white-collar worker. The Further Oral Activity (FOA) is one of the key assessments of IB Group 1 - Language and Literature, and the FOA aims to allow students to show a deep and comprehensive understanding of texts and contexts and to make valuable in-depth reflections in the form of ideas.

Grade 10
Recently, for Grade 10 students in the Literature Group, the class activities have been a new experience for them. Students finished a warm-up Individual Oral Commentary (IOC) according to the syllabus of Pre-IB Literature. They analyzed one character in the ancient poem ‘The Peacock Flies to Southeast’. Although this ancient poem is very long, and the characters are complicated, the students still presented their ideas clearly based on the text and resources, which showed their skills in literary appreciation.
In the Language and Literature Group, the Grade 10 students are learning the language part, focusing on Speech. Through watching and analyzing different speeches, they are gradually realizing the mystery and mastery of how to design their own speech content and apply skills according to different audiences.

Global Campus

CAS @ NACIS Shanghai - Grade 9 Tanzania Expedition
Earlier this month we welcomed back our Grade 9 students who recently participated in a community outreach programme in Tanzania.
Before embarking on the expedition, students across all learning stages were involved in a number of interactive fundraising student led initiatives. With the total figure raised from activities surpassing the initial fundraising goals, students then headed to Tanzania equipped with not only the funds to get hands on in local community projects but the excitement, eagerness and determination to make a difference.
Whilst staying at camp, NACIS Shanghai students were able to meet and connect with other Nord Anglia students who were participating in the same programme. It was an opportunity for NACIS Shanghai students to meet in person those who they had already connected with via our online learning tool, Global Campus, as well as form friendships with others within our community of schools.
The students were involved in a wide range of activities building on different skills with a number of outcomes all related to their CAS studies. To show you this we have put together a photo gallery also containing students’ reflections upon their return to Shanghai. 
It is through opportunities such as the Tanzania expedition that make the CAS component of the IBDP more meaningful, not just for students but those who have benefited from donations and activities. Teachers accompanying students on this journey of discovery, observed the resilience and determination in these young leaders of the future–true NACIS ambassadors.

Other News

Drama competition success for Secondary students
On Sunday 10 December, twenty NACIS students from Grades 9 to 11 went to Shanghai High School to participate in the annual ‘Shanghai Secondary School Drama Festival’ led by Ms. Lucy Chen. With several well-known international and bilingual schools participating from across Shanghai, there was a fun yet competitive atmosphere.
NACIS students created a play titled ‘After Nora left’. The students were responsible for script creation, role allocation and set design as well as ensuring that enough time was dedicated to rehearsals. During the festival, NACIS students delivered a passionate and professional performance allowing them to stand out from their strong opponents. As a result of their hard work and commitment to the project, students were awarded with the title of ‘Best Costume’ demonstrating their profound interpretation and understanding of their characters. 

The festival was an opportunity for students to showcase their interest and passion for theatrical performances and we are sure there will be more similar events which will also contribute to our high school’s IB CAS curriculum.

We would like to thank students, teachers and parents for their support in making this event such a success- we are sure your encouragement made the event just that extra special for all students involved as well as some very special memories!

NACIS swim meet success

Last weekend, 72 NACIS students went to the Shanghai Vango Sports Centre for their first swimming tournament. We are delighted to see the achievements of both Primary and Secondary students as well as the commitment, dedication and maturity shown in their training and during competition meets- well done NACIS! 

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