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Mr Ian Battersby: Weekly Update 14/06/2019

Ian Battersby
Ian Battersby (103 posts) Head Teacher, Early Years and Infant Campus View Profile

‘It’s not rocket science!’ was the title of the F3 performance that took place on Thursday morning.  It was wonderful to see all the children in F3 having the confidence to stand on stage in front of a packed audience. The children sang about F3 being ‘awesome’ and they certainly were this week.

F3 Production 2019 - BIS HCMC

Learning opportunities come in a variety of forms. Acquiring knowledge is one aspect of learning, but there is so much more to learning than that. Our Year 1 children had a different learning experience this week when they visited the Bitexco Tower. There was a great deal of excitement as the children stood at the base of such a tall building; it gave them a real sense of perspective.  They then had a different view over Ho Chi Minh City as they created various artistic interpretations of the views from the observation platform.

Bitexco 5 new

You can find out more about these two events in these posts:

'It's not Rocket Science' F3 Celebrate with their End of Year show

Y1 Visit the Bitexco Tower

Aquathlon and Triathlon

Aquathlon 2019 1

Pushing yourself to the limit of your endurance is another form of learning that was evident last weekend.  Over 300 children took part in the BIS Primary Aquathlon held on the Junior Campus with many children taking part in this type of event for the first time.

It wasn’t just the children who were competing this weekend however.  At the Secondary Campus, the very first BIS Triathlon was taking place.  This event was not only for students, thanks to the encouragement of Ms Sarah Curran, members of staff from the Early Years and Infant Campus were swimming, cycling and running in an attempt to complete the course.  For more details and all the results, please see the following posts:

BIS Primary Aquathlon 2019

BIS Triathlon 2019

F3 to Year 1 Transition Coffee Morning

A few weeks ago we held a coffee morning for parents whose children are moving from Year 2 to Year 3.  This has been followed up by a number of activities, including some exciting Treasure Hunts that the Year 2 children have been taking part in this week.

Although the move for our F3 children is just along the corridor, there is a change in the curriculum they will be learning.  Up to F3, the children are part of the Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) with its own curriculum based around seven areas of learning, with personal and social development, communication and language and physical development being at the core.  In Year 1, the children start following the National Curriculum from the UK. 

There are a number of other changes in Year 1 , so I would like to invite all parents of children in F3 to join Ms. Maria, Ms. Jess and myself on Thursday 20th June at 8.30am in the canteen, for a coffee morning where we will explain more about the transition process and the differences to expect in Year 1.

Moving On Workshop

BIS Moving On Workshop

For some members of our community, preparations will be well underway for a move back to a home country or to a new location.  Moving home is known to be one of the most stressful experiences anyone can go through. On Wednesday 19th June in the Black Box Theatre (on the Junior Campus) we will be holding a Moving on Workshop.  There are a number of measures you can take to help ease the stress of moving and help prepare your child for relocating to somewhere new. Mrs. Kim McWilliam, our school counsellor, will talk through some of the things you can do at home and during the move to make it more manageable for your family.

What do you think about Seesaw?


As a school we have now been using Seesaw for one year. Last week, at the Headteachers’ coffee morning there were some questions about how we could improve. We would like to encourage all parents to spend a few moments filling in a questionnaire about what you have liked and ways we could improve for next year.  Please click on the form here and complete the questionnaire.

Thank you for your time in helping us reflect and develop our use of Seesaw.

Seesaw: If you are leaving BIS this year

For families who are leaving this term you will still have access until the 5th July 2019.  Some of you may want to download your child’s journal to keep forever. To do this, click here and follow the help sheet. If you need any help with downloading the journal, please do speak to Ms Sarah at the EY&I or Mr Chris at the Juniors. You must do this on a computer, not on a mobile device.

BIS Summer Holiday Sports Camps

Due to on-going construction and renovation work in each campus that may last the whole of the summer holidays, and in consideration of the health and safety of our children, we have decided to not plan any summer sports camps in July or August this year. We appreciate your understanding of this reasoning. Holiday sports camps will resume in the October holidays.

Roadworks Outside the Early Years and Infant Campus

As we are all aware, Thao Dien is presently undergoing some major roadworks which are now close to the main entrance of the  EY&IC. As a school, we have tried very hard to communicate with the construction company to delay any work close to the school until the summer holidays. However, the work needs to be completed within a particular timescale and will carry on.  I would ask for everybody’s patience and understanding whilst this work is ongoing. Hopefully, it will benefit everyone in District 2 in the future.

Anthony Rowlands

Managing our Traffic Together

Just prior to the holiday, I was contacted by a member of our local community asking about what was being done about the traffic situation in Thao Dien.  I met with the gentleman in question and showed him the procedures we have in place and how the school has invested in measures to help ensure the traffic keeps flowing, for example, creating the car park next to the Early Years and Infant Campus.

He was impressed with all that we have done.  Thank you to everyone who has worked with their drivers to ensure that the code of conduct is followed.  Unfortunately, there are still some drivers who insist on double parking near school and doing U-turns close to the drop-off area.  Please speak to your drivers to remind them of what is expected. 

Thank you – together we can make a difference.

Drivers Code of Conduct

For more information about how we can work together to improve traffic around our campuses, please access this post.

Be Involved...

Join our BIS Baby and Toddler Group


Children can start at BIS when they are 2 years old. Fundinotots is the ‘BIS Baby and Toddler Group’ where parents of children aged 0 to 36 months can meet other parents and allow their children to engage in a range of activities. Fundinotots is based on the new Early Years and Infant Campus.

To find out more about fundinotots at BIS HCMC, please click here.

PTG Update

We continue to look for volunteers to come together to form our PTG for next academic year.  The role is an extremely valuable one where you help to coordinate events and bring teams together to run wonderful opportunities for our community such as, the Spring Fair and Family Evening. If we do not have enough volunteers, we will not be able to organize these fabulous events.  The children enjoy these events so much and it would be a terrible shame if they were cancelled because we had nobody to organize them. If you think you could help out next year, please, please, please speak to one of the existing committee members or let Ms Dee or me know.

PTG Update: 14/06/2019

Toothpaste and Toothbrushes Campaign

British International School HCMC Toothpaste Collection

Alois Luong who is one of our brilliant community-minded students in Year 12 would like to collect toothpaste and toothbrushes during the last two weeks of school. A few years ago, Alois collected dental items which were delivered to those in poverty living in Vietnam with great success, and he would like to rerun this project.

Good dental hygiene is something we take for granted.  We brush our teeth every day and visit the dentist regularly to ensure our teeth are healthy.  For many in poverty in Vietnam, this simply doesn’t happen; these things being considered a luxury.  So, when you are doing your shopping, please buy an extra toothbrush and some toothpaste and place it in the collection box which will be located in the Parents’ Hall from next week.

Toothpaste and Toothbrush Collection 2019

Dates for your Diary...

16/6/19 – Term 3 Co-Curricular Activities (clubs) Finish

17/6/19 – 20/6/19 – F1 and F2 Class Celebrations

17/6/19 & 18/6/19 – Year 2 Visits to the Ao Dai Museum

19/6/19 – Moving On Workshop @ 8.30am in the Black Box Theatre (Junior Campus)

20/6/19 – F3 to Year 1 Transition Coffee Morning @ 8.30am in the Canteen

20/6/19 – Tech No Day!

20/6/19 – PTG Disco

21/6/19 – End of Year Reports Emailed to Parents

25/6/19 – Open Afternoon

28/6/19 – Term 3 Ends @ 11.50am


Health and Safety

Stay Vigilant

As in all major cities petty crime does occur, as a reminder to all of us please always take care of your personal belongings, especially when walking between campuses and across roads.

Before and after school waiting area

When waiting to drop off and collect the children at the EY&I we ask for all parents, carers and children to wait on the ground floor only.  We are in the process of installing extra seating in the shaded areas to increase the seating areas for our community at these times.  This rule is in place to ensure lessons and clubs that are running at these times are not disturbed and all children in the building are kept safe.  People sitting around the lower ground floor outside the canteen and along the corridors will be asked to move to the ground floor by our teaching staff.  Thank you for your cooperation in keeping our campus safe.

Safeguarding at school – it’s everyone’s responsibility

Personal Photographs

It is every parent’s wish to capture memorable moments on camera of their child at school either performing in an assembly, on their birthday or simply playing with their friends on the playground before the start of the school day.  Any photos that are taken by parents on personal devices must be kept private.  They must not be shared publicly on social media or between non-family members such as, other parents in the school.  By following these guidelines, we ensure our BIS safeguarding policy is adhered to and that our children are kept safe. 

Thank you for your understanding and cooperation.

BIS CPO poster_2018_Dec2018-1

If, during your visit to school, you have any reason to be concerned about the safety of a young person, please contact the Designated Safeguarding Leader.

Thank you,

Ms Mary

And Finally…

Today, we had the last Vietnamese lessons of the school year and on Sunday, the final clubs will take place on the Junior and Early Years and Infant Campuses.  I would like to thank all the staff, providers and volunteers for their time and support in running these great activities for our children.  

Please remember, next week school will finish at 2.50pm for everyone on the Early Years and Infant Campus.

Wishing you a safe and enjoyable weekend,

Ian Battersby, Head of the Early Years and Infant Campus