Science and Technology Week comes up once every two years here at MIS, alternated yearly with the Arts and Literacy Week and it is easy to see why this is one of the most popular events on our calendar.
Students had been preparing their fascinating presentations, demonstrations, and experiments for several weeks in advance, but they spent the week putting the finishing touches on their explorations. The week also featured an exciting Science Quiz Show and a design challenge (pictured) where students were tasked with creating a prototype using just limited materials and the design cycle to sail from one side of the swimming pool to the other. The boat that made it across in the shortest time (and, of course, did not sink) was the winner. Most boats made it across, but the factors of seaworthiness, aerodynamics, and sail positioning made for the winning combination.
MIS is a not-for-profit International school, and part of our commitment to that status is a commitment to transparency. On Saturday, November 17th, about 130 members of our school community came down for the Annual General Meeting and Barbecue event - an important event in the school calendar where our Head of School, Mr Gerald Donovan, presented about the finances of the school, our academic progress and achievements, and our plans for our future. Our board, who are mostly avaialable on our school Whatsapp group, also introduced themselves to the community.
After the serious business, everyone went out to the poolside barbecue, where some of our DP students were playing live music while the groundstaff and Ibu Tika prepared delicious burgers, hotdogs, chicken, and some vegetarian options while the students swam until the afternoon.
On October 30th, Grades 3 and 4 went to Goa Ergendang Cave and Hot Spring for a field trip. They have been learning about how “People are interconnected to the benefits and challenges presented by the physical changes in our Earth.” Relaxing in the hot spring is a definite benefit from the Earth and to have them inside of a solution cave made it all the more special. Inside the cave, students were excited to explore the cave habitat and observe the different animals that inhabit them. They were also surprised by the heat of the water in the hot spring and were able to make connections about the source of that heat. They were able to see roots from underneath the ground and make the cave echo, (which is how the cave got its name). For the upcoming Science Fair, the students are preparing dioramas to show their learning about more physical changes to the Earth. Some changes are abrupt and catastrophic and some take years to change.
For more information about caves please see: https://www.britannica.com/science/cave#ref994831
Goa Ergendang : Penungkiren, Sinembah Tanjung Muda Hilir, Deli Serdang Regency, North Sumatra 20363
Our MYP trip was held in Bali from the 29th of October until the 2nd of November and, while it might sound idyllic, this was far from a relaxing holday! Students had a learning-filled, fun-packed adventure which included learning first-hand about the various industries that make up Bali's economy including handicrafts and silverwork. They also visited sacred sites and temples including Tanah Lot and Tampak Siring. Pak Ketut, our wonderful local guide, helped students gain a deeper understanding of Balinese culture as we learned Balinese dance and Gamelan as well as exploring the countryside by bicycle and the rivers by raft.
All in all, this was quite an adventure. Students still found time to hang out and play games until curfew in the evenings, and most nights they were so exhausted that they slept all the way though to morning! We thank you for entrusting your children to us on this year's MYP trip and we look forward to next year's learning adventure.
The United Nations has celebrated October 24th as their UN Day since 1945 when their charter became into force. We decided to use this day to have a celebration of International Mindedness at MIS.
The UN has 193 member states and 2 observer states. At MIS we proudly have students representing 15 countries and teachers from 5 different nationalities. Not quite the 195 that the UN represents so…. We had three of the organizations under the UN umbrella come to MIS and some local community members to represent other nation; the IOM, UNHCR, UNDSS.
MIS 2018 International Day had 25 booths. We had weaving, origami, clay activities, food, trivia, games, photo booths, educational opportunities, musical instruments and much much more!
We are proud at MIS to be able to showcase the variety of nationalities living in Medan. We strive to teach the students at MIS Medan that we need to accept, appreciate and love people we are similar as well as different from us.
“Our uniqueness, our individuality, and our life experience molds us into fascinating beings. I hope we can embrace that. I pray we may all challenge ourselves to delve into the deepest resources of our hearts to cultivate an atmosphere of understanding, acceptance, tolerance, and compassion. We are all in this life together.” Linda Thompson
Today for buddy reading we had a culminating and rewarding experience for grade 3/4. I told them three weeks ago, after reading a Roger Hargreaves book, that they were going to make their own Mr. Men book. They read Little Miss / Little Mr books, they wrote books, they edited them, they illustrated them, they published them! Finally, the hard work all paid off when they were able to share them with their Kindergarten buddies. They read them underwater! They definitely want to do this again!
From August 20th through to the 31st, MIS runs the Measure of Academic Progress Growth (MAP Growth) tests provided by NWEA in the US.
These adaptive tests allow us to benchmark our students against international students. We conduct the tests three times a year and this allows us to see how our students are progressing in their Reading, Writing, and Mathematics in comparison to the predicted improvement that we would normally see during the same period taken from the data of thousands of students around the world.
This is a great way for us to look at the individual progress of each student and also to review how effective our program is in developing these core skills in our learners. A report is provided to parents for discussion in our Parent-Student-Teacher conferences and we use the data to help us personalize the instructional plan for each child as the year goes forward. To learn more about MAP, please visit the NWEA website;
On August 10th, 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, Knee Trembler, Magic Carpet/Sack Race and Bakiak Race. It ended with a delicious, Indonesian, pot-luck style meal.
For at least the past 4 years, MIS has had a connection with the Orangutan Haven. I (Rachel Wayne - Teacher at MIS since 2015) first visited 4 years ago when it was just an idea and a future site.....now they are a few months away from realizing this long project of moving earth to make islands for the Orangutan.
MIS is very fortunate to have been able to visit the Haven so many times in the past. We have seen the Have develop as well as feel a connection to the place and the people working there. With limited access to safe, clean public parks with nature trails in Medan, we have utilized the Haven as a place to bathe in nature.
The students have been practicing the Japanese ??? (shinrin yoku) for a few years now. They have been able to relax in nature, soak up what it has to offer and notice the benefits of relaxation and reduced blood pressure and stress.
The Orangutan Haven visits have been made possible because of a partnership. The SOCP is a collaborative initiative of Yayasan Ekosistem Lestari (YEL), the PanEco Foundation, and the Indonesian Government’s Directorate General of Natural Resource and Ecosystem Conservation.
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!
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!
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.
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.
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 globalplayday.org 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.
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:
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;
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.
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 https://www.instagram.com/helpmedan/
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: http://sgyouthambassadors.org/youth-environmental-summit-yes/
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?
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 http://mylittlenorway.com/2008/12/saint-lucia-day/ "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!
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!
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.