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Mr Simon Higham: Weekly Update 16/09/16

16 September 2016

The inspirational Stephen Hawking said:

 ‘For millions of years, mankind lived just like the animals. Then something happened which unleashed the power of our imagination. We learned to talk and we learned to listen. Speech has allowed the communication of ideas, enabling human beings to work together to build the impossible. Mankind's greatest achievements have come about by talking, and its greatest failures by not talking. It doesn't have to be like this. Our greatest hopes could become reality in the future. All we need to do is make sure we keep talking.’

Thank you to all parents who attended our Parents’ Meetings this week. In asking for feedback about this event, one parent stated that it was good to be able to ‘connect’ with their child’s class teacher so early on. Please ensure that this connection continues with your child’s teachers over the course of this academic year through face to face meetings, emails and regular comments in your child’s diary. Together, we can all facilitate true, lifelong learning.

If you have yet to meet with your child’s class teacher, please ensure that you arrange a time to see them at the earliest convenience.

Moon Festival

Moon Festival

I hope that you enjoyed our Moon Festival celebrations today starting with the Dragon Dance performance and continuing with assemblies.  All of our children (and parents) looked fantastic in their traditional Vietnamese costumes.

I would like to personally thank all of our TAs and the children who have worked tirelessly in preparing the two assemblies that were performed today – well done!

In the Spotlight - Meet This Week’s Teacher in Focus

Meet Robert Sesemann, Year 2 Teacher at British International School HCMC, Vietnam

This week, we would like to introduce to you Mr Rob, our new Y2 teacher, who is in the spotlight. Read about his first impressions of Vietnam by accessing this post, that can be found, with all other posts, in the News and Insights section of the School Website.

Healthy Body and Healthy Minds

Healthy Body + Healthy Mind = Healthy Learning at British International School, HCMC

Research shows that a healthy diet helps children to learn more effectively. Across BIS, we are helping all of our children to understand how to make healthy choices within their everyday lifestyles. Take a look at how Y6 have approached this through an awareness homework in this post by Ms Anna Wheatley, Art and Display Leader.

To find out more about what foods your child should eat to achieve a healthy, balanced diet, read the Eatwell Guide, produced by NHS.uk

F3 Open Swimming

It was great to see so many of our F3 parents visit their child’s first swimming lessons in the pool during our Open Swimming event this week. For many children, this was the first time that they have been in the big pool as part of the PE curriculum. Read more about the sessions led by Mr Richard and see a selection of pictures in this post by Mr Chris McKelvie, Assistant Headteacher

Extreme Reading

Book Week at APP and TX this September

Book Week is coming to AP1, with the visit of our author in residence, Mr Ciaran Murtagh on 28th, 29th and 30th September – more details will be coming your way very soon.

In preparation for this event, we challenge all children to take part in our Extreme Reading Challenge. Find out how you can get involved now by reading this this post.

Extra-Curricular Clubs

Please be reminded that the term 1 Extra Curricular Club programme begins on Monday 19th September. To access your child’s club schedule, click onto the ‘My Schedule’ tab of CHQ and scroll through to Monday 19th September - you will be able to see your accepted clubs. Please ensure that your child is picked up from their club room at the designated finish time – thank you.

More details about all of our clubs can be found in the club booklet that can be accessed here.

Community Service

The school year is in full swing, and Community Service is starting up at AP1! This term, we are offering nine clubs for students from Years 1 to 6 to take part in fun activities with children from some of our partner organisations. The clubs include Friendship Club, Lego Club, Origami and Paper Crafts, Football, Swimming, Chess, Under Construction Club, Helping Hands, and Yoga. 

For more information about our Community Clubs, look at this post by Ms Samantha Baker, EAL teacher and Community Leader.

Health and Safety – AED (Automatic External Defibrillator) Training

Health And Safety Course AED 2

This week, our specialist teachers underwent training for the use of AEDs (Automatic External Defibrillators) that are currently located across all BIS Campuses – the AP1 defibrillator is housed outside the Main Office at the end of the corridor. Read more about this training and why the AEDs are important in this post by Ms Dee Grimshaw, Deputy Head Teacher.

PTG Update - Parent Liaison Volunteer

Ms Ying bisvnptgap1@gmail.com

Thank you to all of the Class Parents who attended Wednesday’s meeting at the Terrace Café. Please look out for correspondence from your Class Parent over the next week.

We are still looking for 12 further Class Parents. If you would like to volunteer or see who your volunteer is, simply click on this link

Saturday Morning Football - Reminder

Saturday morning football

Saturday Morning Football continues this week. It runs every Saturday through term time and is open to boys and girls from Y2 to Y6.


8.00am – 9.00am: Boys Y5-6 and Girls Y4-6 (separate sessions)

9.00am – 10.00am: Boys Y2-4 and Girls Y2-3 (separate sessions)

For more information on sessions or if you can help with coaching, please contact: 


PTG Social Evening:

We would like to invite all parents and teachers to the PTG Social Night next week! It will be a night of drinks, food, making new friends and reacquainting with old ones.

Date and time: Thursday 22 September, 7.00pm -9.00pm

Venue: An Cafe (10 Tran Ngoc Dien, Thao Dien)

Ticket cost : 300,000 VND (includes finger food and 3 drinks of wine, beer or soft drinks)

Ticket are on sale now, until 22nd September. Please purchase your tickets at our ticket stands at Gate A and outside the Canteen (in the morning and at pick up time).

If you are able to help sell tickets, please sign up using this link

BBGV Fun Run

BIS will once again sponsor the BBGV Annual Fun Run for Charity. This event is a 4km fun run to raise money for local charities in Vietnam. Further information can be found here.

Event Details:

  • Date: Sunday 25th September 2016
  • Venue: Tan Trao, Phu My Hung, Tan Phu Ward, District 7, HCMC
  • BIS Group Photo: 7.30am – look out for the BIS Banners directing you to the group photo area
  • Race Starts: 8.00am

Registration: As BIS is a Diamond Sponsor, registration is free for up to 1000 BIS participants!

Registration has now begun. To take part, visit the AP1 Cashier and collect your participation bib.

BIS Event T-shirts (see image below are available at each campus at a subsidised cost of VND100,000 (subject to availability). Participants can either purchase a new t-shirt or wear their t-shirt from last year. 


Please be aware that parents are responsible for transport to and from the event. Parents are also responsible for their own children on the day as many staff will be participating in this event.

Upcoming Dates for your Diary


Monday 19th: Term 1 clubs begin

Tuesday 20th: F3 (F1 – F3) and MP1 (Y1 – Y2) – Talk for Writing Workshop (this letter was sent out on   14.09.16)

Thursday 22nd: MP2 (Y3 – Y4) and MP3 (Y5 –Y6) – Talk for Writing Workshop

PTG Social Night. A fun night of drinks, nibbles and socialising for teachers and      parents.

Friday 23rd: EYFS  - Learning Journey Workshop

                     (more details about the above workshops are coming soon)

Sunday 25th: BBGV Fun Run


Sunday 9th: PTG Family Picnic. A fun day for all with food, drink, stalls and fun activities for both parents and children. (FREE for new families).

And Finally………

Does your child want to try a new activity?

Saigon Pony Club now has 28 ponies, over 120 weekly riders with 2 full time foreign teachers and

in March 2017, the ‘new’ Saigon Pony Club will celebrate its 10th anniversary. 

pony club

For more information, visit their website, collect a flier from the AP1 Main Office or email them directly, using the address at the bottom of the poster.

I wish you all a very pleasant and family orientated weekend.

Mr Simon Higham, Head Teacher at An Phu Primary Campus