Friday, 16 March 2018
Swimming Carnival makes a huge splash at MIS

Today was MIS's annual swimming carnival. We played host to Siti Hajar, Chandra Kumala, Sekolah Integritas Bangsa, SIS and Prime One School. Students competed in freestyle, breaststroke, backstroke and relay competitions. That's 51 total races. The staff and parents that worked to prepare the event did a great job and the races proceeded like a well-oiled machine. MIS won two first-place trophies (grades 3-4 and 7-8 categories), a second place trophy (grades 5-6 category), a third-place trophy (grades 9-10 category) and a pile of medals. The real reward for everyone was all the fun we had in this friendly competition. There were as many smiles as there were splashes in the pool and enough food from the PTA to feed a small army. Thanks everyone for a great day!

Thursday, 08 March 2018

The MYP 1 Mathematics students visited Bank Mandiri Cabang Citra Garden to ask questions about interest and investment as part of the IB MYP Mathematics Criterion D Assessment: Applying mathematics in real-life context. The students needed to justify their problem-solving strategies for their maths assessment "How can you double your money?". Thanks for the warm and pleasant hospitality from the Bank Mandiri staff and Manager!

Friday, 23 February 2018
Arts and Literacy Week

Development in the arts and literacy are a core part of preparing our children for a bright, creative future and are central to our philosophy as an IB school. This week at MIS was full of arts and literature related events. For this year's Arts and Literacy Week, we had a theme of Heroes. Each day there was something that we focused on in addition to the normal school routine. 

The picture attached shows the Tortor music and how the students danced traditional dances, wearing ulos.

  • Monday - Art hour and Mural Painting
  • Tuesday - Face Painting and a progressive book with writing and illustrations
  • Wednesday - Mother tongue readers
  • Thursday - Tortor presentation 
  • Friday - The big culminating event including: MYP did a Bahasa Indonesia play about a Malin Kundang legend accompanied by poetry readings, A German song "Du", “Le Petit Chaperon Rouge”  in Bahasa Prancis, and PYP did "Robin Hood and His Musical Merry Men" along with an Art Gallery in the lobby of the school

It was a great week full of visual art, music, and literary arts. The gym bulletin boards were full of great work coming out of the classrooms.

Wednesday, 07 February 2018
Global Play Day

During Global Play Day students use their social and thinking skills to interact and collaborate to have fun while learning about how they can engage others, compromise, and fill their time by making choices without interference from adults. During this day, the lack of guidance allows them to be fully open and comfortable to fully be themselves and or engage with other students on their own terms. 

In his TEDx lecture, Peter Gray clearly argues the case that today'skids do not grow up playing and this has negatively impacted them in many ways. It's time we return the gift of play to this generation. Please visit for more information.

This year is the 3rd year that MIS is participating in global play day! :)

This photo is of Anya happily sharing her battery-free toys that she brought to class for this day of unstructured play. 

Thursday, 25 January 2018
Heroes in Indonesia

As part of the inquiry process grades two and three went to the Museum Bukit Barisan, Museum Negeri Sumatera Utara, Monument of Sisingamangaraja and the Kuburan Pahlawan to learn more about Indonesian heroism, history, true stories, and legends. The students enjoyed the trip thoroughly and tried on a gas mask. Our Central idea is: People are capable of shaping their own futures through their actions. Our lines of inquiry are:


  • what actions and decisions significant ‘heroic’ people have made 
  • how significant ‘heroic’ people’s lives have impacted the world in positive ways
  • how we can set goals to shape our futures
  • determining what is heroic worldwide through stories of heroism from our own cultures



Monday, 15 January 2018
MYP trip to Telunas, Batam

Our school mission states that MIS students need to "act in a caring way leading to a positive impact on the future of our world". One of the ways in which we worked towards this goal this year was through our one-week MYP trip to Telunas, in Batam.

This exciting trip, based on the beautiful and remote island of Telunas, included learning adventures like;

  • Survival skills; orientation, creating a solar still, fishing, and climbing
  • Traditional Pottery
  • Kayaking
  • Working with local schools on sustainable programs
  • and community service

One of the most rewarding aspects of the trip was when our students had the chance to work with a local primary school on the island of Selat Binga and build a handwashing/toothbrushing station to provide clean water in an area with limited plumbing. As well as building the station, MIS students taught local students about the importance of handwashing and regular dental hygiene and created active lesson plans to ensure a deep understanding from the younger students. MIS students also provided toothbrushes and toothpaste to the students of the school.

Thursday, 04 January 2018
Youth Environmental Summit Singapore

Do you know that on average, Indonesian residents dispose of 2.1kg of waste per day? This is the most waste per capita of all the ASEAN countries. (Source: The World Bank)

On December 31, 2018, four students pioneered MIS’s first PYP international school field trip. Ethan, Reynaldo, Hausen, and Adam from PYP 4/5 joined hundreds of other students ages 9-18 from all over South East Asia in Singapore for the 2018 Youth Environmental Summit. Over a period of four nights and five days, students learned about a variety of environmental issues faced by ASEAN countries. They went on experiential trips to a number of locations around Singapore where they saw and experienced environmental issues and solutions hands-on. Students were then given the task of solving one of these issues on their own as a school group. These groups developed a business model that they then presented to an international panel of judges. Inspired by the fact above regarding the waste issue in Indonesia, our students came up with the idea of creating an Instagram page that would share facts, photos, and information regarding waste issues in Medan. The judges were impressed with the practicality and potential effectiveness of their idea, and students came in 2nd place in their grouping! Please follow their page at 

It was a fantastic learning experience for the students, all of whom demonstrated confidence as public speakers and creativity as problem solvers. They met many new friends from all over the region and developed a range of personal, social, and critical thinking skills. For more information on the conference, please visit:

Sunday, 17 December 2017
Making Learning Visible

From September 18, 2017 to December 17, 2017 some MIS teachers participated in an online course through Harvard Graduate School of Education. Mrs. Julie, Ms. Brittany, and Ms. Rachel all worked hard on a course called Making Learning Visible. They met twice weekly to have face-to-face as well as participate in online conversations.

During this course the chosen question to research was: How can documentation aid teachers thinking regarding student engagement?

Course throughlines: #1What can teachers and students do to support the creation of learning groups in the classroom? #2 How does documentation shape, extend, and make visible children's and adult's learning? #3 How do learning groups create as well as transmit culture, values, and democracy? What opportunity and responsibilities does this create? 

Thursday, 14 December 2017
Santa Lucia

At MIS we have had a Scandinavian population for quite a long time. Due to this influence, every year we participate a Saint Lucia tradition.

According to "Luciadagen (Saint Lucia Day) is on the 13th of December. It is traditionally a feast day from the Calendar of Saints which comes from the early Christian custom of commemorating martyrs. Even though Norway recognises the other feast days in the Church, only St Lucia, St John and St Olav's days are celebrated nation-wide. St Lucia Day was first introduced to Norway when Christianity spread over the country in the late 1000s.  This day became a mark on the farmer's primstav - a wooden calendar stick marking seasonal preparation and celebration days."

Many of the MYP & PYP students at MIS participate in this tradition by processing into the gym while singing and holding a candle and then distributing "Lucia Buns" to the audience. One student is adorned with candles on her head as well! 

Thursday, 14 December 2017
MIS Idol

As Medan's full IB school, we teach our children from Kindergarten up to Senior High to be risk-takers and courageous. One of the ways in which students develop this courage is by performing their skills and talents in front of a large audience.

Our MIS Idol event - essentially a broad varierty/talent show - brought a big crowd and some expert impartial judges to watch a range of performers, including bands, solo artists, dancers, acapella singers, and many more. After the votes were tallied and the winners announced, the event concluded with a beautiful performance of Santa Lucia from our Scandinavian contingent (see separate article) and a visit from Santa himself, who distributed gifts for all the students. What a perfect night!

Saturday, 18 November 2017
Soccer Carnival

Schools from all around Medan came to our soccer fields on November 18th, 2017 for the Sumatra-famous MIS Soccer Carnival - a day of competition and team spirit.

Local schools including Siti Hajar, Chandra Kumala, SIS, Kingston, and Prime One, came to field their best teams on a beautiful, clear, and sunny day in three age groups; Under 11s, Under 14s, and Under 17s.

Teams battled it out in this knockout format competition and fought their way through the quarter finals, semi finals, and eventually the finals. Some of the finals even ended up going to nailbiting penalty kicks before a winner could be decided.

Thursday, 09 November 2017
PYP Camp

PYP Camp is an overnight stay at school where the students are participating in various team building activities and learning about themselves as well. We did geocaching, painted rocks, swam, cooked, had a gecko hunt, dance and had an escape room. The students all slept in the gym, some in tents they set up before the event.

Learning objectives for the camp are linked with the PYP Learner Profile for MIS. The camp allows students to be independent, strengthen their communication and team building skills, and develop friendships while enjoying life-skills experiences different to those that can be offered as part of the normal school day.

Tuesday, 31 October 2017
MIS Spook-tacular Halloween

Yesterday, participating students stayed after school for a costume parade and some spooktacular Halloween themed games and activities. After breaking off into teams, students completed Glow in the Dark bowling, a Skeleton Assembly Relay, a Build-a-Monster craft, an I-Spy picture challenge, and a Ghost Balloon Relay. We ended with a Spooky trivia game show for all students and attending adult volunteers. Congratulations to Team Werewolves for winning the event! We look forward to more great community events like this throughout the school year. 

Thursday, 14 September 2017
Starbucks Farmer Support Center (FSC) Indonesia

The Students of MIS are very fortunate to live where they do. North Sumatra has a wealth of natural, geological and beautiful resources. One of these resources is fertile soil and wonderful weather for growing coffee.

Today we were able to go to a place that Starbucks Barista's and Shareholders can only imagine. Thanks to Mr. Henao we were able to go to Brastagi and experience the Starbucks Coffee Farmer Support Center. It was amazing.

For more details:

The students learned about: shade grown coffee, pairing plants to grow among the trees, self sustainable farming with plants and animals, coffee sipping, crema, the peaberry, animals living amongst the coffee trees, farmer collaboration and training, factory machines, sorting, cleaning and transportation of beans.

It was a great trip and the last of or field trip extravaganza for our units in 2/3/4/5.

Wednesday, 06 September 2017
Museum Perkebunan Indonesia & Lunar Archery

To supplement their unit of inquiry studies on local land use, PYP 4/5 went to Museum Perkebunan Indonesia. Here students learned all about the commodities that Indonesia is famous for: tea, coffee, sugar cane, tobacco, rubber, palm oil and cacao. They learned how these commodities are extracted and used. They also learned about the history of plantations in Indonesia and how the search for spices brought people from Portugal, the Netherlands, and Spain to the region. After touring the museum, students made their own chocolate from molds and learned about how they use palm oil to make chocolate and bread. 

 Following the museum, students walked next door to Lunar Archery for a Physical Education excursion. There, students learned the basics of archery and had a one hour practice. They learned about the importance of steadiness, focus, and concentration along with the physical skills needed to shoot the arrow. You can find more information about Lunar Archery, (and some photos of us), and their Instagram:

Saturday, 19 August 2017
Meet the Parents and Indonesian Fun Games Night

On August 18th, we celebrated Indonesian Independence Day and also got to know each other better through Meet the Parents and Indonesian Fun Games Night. The event started with a rendition of the Indonesian national anthem from students, followed by playing the games that had been set up around the room including pillow fighting, kerupuk eating, musical ball dance, sack race and bakiak. It ended with a delicious, Indonesian, pot-luck style meal. 

Friday, 18 August 2017
PYP 2-5 Excursion to Musim Mas

PYP 2-5 had a wonderful trip at Musim Mas palm oil factory! We learned about how palm is grown and what it's used it, were given a bus tour around the factory complex, then took a tour of a part of the factory where chocolate is made. This connected with PYP 2/3's unit on habitats and 4/5's unit on land use. The trip led to great discussions back at school about the benefits and challenges of using land for palm production.

To learn more about where we went and our discussions in class, watch this video:

Friday, 11 August 2017
PYP Excursion to Orangutan Haven

The PYP ended their first week with an excursion to the Orangutan Haven. Our guides taught us about their conservation efforts while we hiked through a section of their 48 hectare property. Some highlights of the trip included planting seeds in their organic farm and getting to cool off in the river at the end of our hike. It was a great bonding experience to end the first week of school and directly complimented each class's first Unit of Inquiry. 

To learn more about The Orangutan Haven, click here:

Wednesday, 14 June 2017
Endangered Sumatran Animals Class Website

Kindergarten and Grade 1 learners have worked collaboratively over the past 4 weeks to build their own class website to share the significant learning they have done about endangered Sumatran animals. The website features the extensive writing they have done throughout our final Unit of Inquiry this year. Our central idea has been: Understanding the special characteristics of animals helps people support their survival. Please check out our class website ( to find out more about some of the interesting endangered animals of Sumatra and the beautiful Sumatran jungles where they live. Included on the website are helping organisations and our own ideas for action to support endangered animals' survival. 

Friday, 26 May 2017
Sharing the Planet Excursion to the Zoo

Kindergarten and Grade 1 had an interesting visit, for the morning, to the Medan Zoo as part of our learning about the characteristics of animals. We especially enjoyed seeing the large, interesting birds, the elephant and the Sumatran tigers. A few of the animals we saw are endangered. We had many discussions about the bodies, behaviors and needs of the different animals we were seeing. We have since been able to reflect on how the animals needs were being provided by the zoo as part of our learning about ways we can share our planet with animals.