News from Alfonso - 1/31

Greetings, Friends,

Well it is quiet here this morning. For the first half of the day teachers are off on field trips, visiting other schools in the area, an early childhood program and another PYP school. This is a good way to glean ideas and make new friends and colleagues with whom we can share best practices. In the afternoon we will return to debrief on what we saw and then discuss some key concepts of the PYP.

Students are now gearing up for Capstone trips which are only a month away! Spanish track students have just exchanged their first emails with their host families in Spain, and Japanese and Chinese track students are getting ready for their host schools. This year the Capstone trip will be the basis for the first fifth grade PYP Exhibition in TIS history, to be held later in the spring.

Last Wednesday evening TIS held an International Baccalaureate information evening for prospective parents. We had over 70 people in attendance, which bodes well for enrollment next year. Thanks to teachers Sandy, Junko, Hong, and Adriana for their excellent presentations. Thanks as well to Linda, Jan, Maria, and Teresa for planning the whole event. Thanks last and foremost to the excellent group of parent volunteers and to Keiko-sensei who helped with everything from greeting and snacks and answering questions to the ritual taking out and putting in of chairs.

You may have noted that the old dying trees have been removed from the front of the playground, the young new trees have been planted, and the forms for the new sidewalk will be going in today. With a few days of sun or quasi sun forecast for this week we should actually see the cement poured and the paraphernalia removed.

Remember that the Chinese New Year show is this Friday (details above). And on a related note, a bit of information to share from parent and Board Member Lynda Wannamaker’s wonderful Chinese New Year e-card:

"The Year of the Rabbit begins on February 3, 2011. Most Rabbit years are quiet, positive and inspiring and 2011 is predicted to be heading in this direction – a refreshing change after the fast-moving and quite dramatic Year of the Tiger. Family, diplomacy and personal development will all be highlighted in 2011. Alternative sources of energy and green living will be under the spotlight. The arts and culture sector of society will be very busy producing amazing works of art and staging important exhibitions throughout the year. Love, romance and family life are well-starred, with a renewed appreciation of loved ones and friends. Overall, it should be a fun and relatively peaceful year. Even though aggression, violence and war zones will still be in evidence, the Chinese Rabbit year favors peaceful solutions and diplomacy, so there will be a feeling that all is not lost and that hope is still very much alive."

I like that last sentence, don’t you? Cuniculus redux! Annus Mirabilis!

Wishing you a fine day, week, and year,
Alfonso, 503-226-2496 x109