daw.com - March 13

IMG_1523.JPGWhat a week it was and this coming week looks to be the same.  There is a lot going on for the students this week both in class and with experiential learning.  First off a couple of recaps from last week.
On Wednesday afternoon grade 5 students were treated to a short talk by Koko Kondo who at 8 months old, survived the Hiroshima Atomic blast.  I heard her speech at the opening of the BEIMUN and it was so compelling that you could hear a pin drop and this was with 780 high school students and 150 adults all listening.  While I was not here for the talk with the class, I have been told it was just as compelling.

This works in well with our last unit of the year (Impact) that will start right after the Spring Break.  I also hope it was something that all my students take with them for the rest of their lives.
This week students will do four parts of their Human Body unit.  First off is the presentations.  6-7 students will do their presentation to the class per day.  One thing that is different this time is that students will be providing feeback to a number of their peers.  Each students will provide feedback for four presentations.  Added to this is the fact that for the first time this year each student will have to present to the entire class.  I am sure we will have some great presentations.

The second part is that this is wellness week.  This happens on Tuesday, Thursday and Friday and each student has already signed up for their activities.

Thirdly is a chance to participate in Wushu with a world renowned instructor/practitioner of this martial art - Luyan.  Here is a short bio of her amazing life;
  1. Became member of Beijing Wushu Team at the age of 10 (then continued as a team member until she was 23 years old).
  2. Received over 50 Medals in her competition history.
  3. Beijing Wushu Team Coach for 20 years.
  4. Taught the Phillipine National Wushu Team for two years.
  5. Her Wushu students have become wushu champions themselves.  For example, her Philippine student won a Gold Medal in 2008 Olympics.
  6. Her events were Longfist (changquan), Straigtsword, Staff, 3-section staff, bagua zhang, taiji.
I have scheduled the class in for two sessions with her.  It should be a topic of discussion over dinner each night I am sure.IMG_1530.JPG

Lastly is our final lesson wth Mr. Watson on Chinese medicine and massage.  We were hoping to follow this up with a trip to a hospital but due to renovations this is not possible.  Students will still get a good look at how this really works.  The last two of these opportunities are also part of the Grade 5 Chinese Integration studies.

Students will complete this round of book clubs on Wednesday.  I am concerned that students are not completing their reading in time for these discussions.  It is their responsibility to be fully prepared for these discussions.  Since they created the schedule themselves, I really feel they should be able to follow it. Any assistance you can offer would be greatly appreciated.

As part of both the reading program and also our Impact unit, we will be doing a Read for Hope Read-a-thon on Friday.  Students will bring home a pledge sheet on Monday and need to return it with the money on Friday.  I am hoping that each student in the class can get RMB20-40 worth of pledges for this very worthwhile cause.  Your help with this is greatly appreciated.

For the last two weeks student have been working with out artists in house.  These talented musicians have been busy putting students through the paces of learning all sorts of musical ideas and the performance for this will be in the Theatre on Thursday at 10:15am.  Parents are invited.

Just a reminder that this Friday is a day of school.  It was moved due to both the extended holiday in March for the APAC conference and then again for the Chinese New Year celebtrations.  It is a day 4.


At this time I want to wish everyone a safe and happy Spring Break.  I look forward to hearing all about any travels upon the return after the holiday. We will also be welcoming a new student at that time and I am sure the class will be their regular charming selves.  

Harold Daw