More than ten grade six students joined in a Book Picnic this past Monday. On the beautiful new lawn by the theatre (that used to be a parking lot!), students stretched out on picnic blankets and took turns sharing with each other books they are currently reading, as well as other titles they have read and would recommend. The students brought some individually wrapped snacks to share and enjoyed the warm sunshine and each other's company. It is a delight to see so much passion for books in an era when many different products compete for one's attention.
Photos T. Maguire
The votes were tallied and we just announced the winning titles for this year's Leopard's Paw MS Book Award and the Leopard's Eye HS Book Award. The titles were chosen from among the most popular Project Lit titles students were reading this year. Our overwhelming middle school favorite was Ghost Boys by Jewell Parker Rhodes, a work of realistic / historic fiction with a bit of magical realism. The novel explores systemic racism and the power of forgiveness. Our high school favorite was Punching the Air by Ibi Zoboi and Yusef Salaam. This novel-in-verse is based on Salaam's actual experience of being wrongfully incarcerated following an assault. The 2019 Netflix miniseries drama "When They See Us" is based on Salaam's (and the other young men incarcerated with him) experiences. You may want to add these titles to your TBR (To Be Read) list!
One of the best parts of a long break is the opportunity to delve into some outstanding reads or audio listening! If you are looking for some excellent suggestions, please check out some of the recommendations on this Secondary Library Holiday Learning libguide (password is the same as for the parent portal). Some of the content on here is also AISL student-created!
For adult works, some of my go-tos are New York Public Library's Best Books for Adults (they have scores of other lists you can explore!), the NYT column "What to Read Now," and for listening NPR's Book Concierge for fantastic reviews and recommendations.
Wishing you a marvelous holiday! Stay well, stay safe, and keep reading!
Image credit NYPL
Despite the odd stops and starts over the year, overall, it has been a wonderful 2020-2021 school year. Whether you joined us this past semester, have been here for many years, are moving on to new adventures, or are returning again in August, please know that our school community has been stronger because of you.
Have a safe, restful, and healthy holiday. If you are looking for any advice on staying healthy over the break, one of our G1 students had some good tips! Enjoy your break and we will see you in August!!
The second to last week of school is almost in the books, and the light at the end of the tunnel grows brighter by the minute.
So many exciting things are happening on campus right now. We have the grade level awards ceremonies, we just had a fantastic graduation ceremony this past weekend, and next week we have a modified “Battle of the Beasts” on the last day of school. Couple all this with the ongoing teaching and learning happening and the school is a VERY busy place.
This is all happening at the same time as many of you are finalizing plans for the June/July holidays. Which is also very different in that now, in addition to packing and worrying about flights, you have to exactly time when you need to get a swab stuck up your nose. Fun.
I say all this just because it’s important that we all empathize with each other, with the kids and with the people trying to wrap up what needs to be done this year. Also, we need to communicate with each other. If your situation changes in such a way that it may complicate your child leaving campus this June, or returning in August, please let us know. We are here for the kids, and our number one goal is to facilitate their learning. So, if there is anything that comes up that could affect that, let us know and we’ll try and help any way that we can.
So, now with this, now, ultimate week of school upon us, we look forward to seeing the kids present, engaged and safe as we roll into the vacation.
Have a great weekend!
Dr. Rick Odum
MYP Art Exhibition
Click on the link below to enjoy the awesome artwork done by our Grade 6 - Grade 10 students!
Tenth Annual Poetry and Short Story Competition Results!
Greetings AISL Community,
The judging is finally complete, and it's time to announce the award recipients and new Poet Laureate for the 10th Annual AISL-PTA Secondary Poetry & Short Story competition!
First, I would like to thank all the students in Secondary who were brave enough to share their work through the competition. This is not an easy thing, especially when these pieces put our personal thoughts and vulnerabilities on display. There was a great variety of work submitted and we had nearly 50 entries this year. It was amazing to see and the pieces were a delight to read!
I would also like to thank our PTA for their ongoing support for this wonderful tradition. Also, many thanks to the P&SS Judging Committee: PTA member, Mr. Simon Cole; AISL’s illustrious Secondary Teacher-Librarian, Ms. Terry Maguire; our Secondary science and Physics teacher, Mr Marin Dobson; our locally famous PHE teacher, Mr. Wayne Thompson; our dedicated Diploma Program Coordinator and Language & Literature teacher, Ms. Monica Murphy. And last, but certainly not least, Mr Tony Potts for his ongoing technical support and expertise.
All the award recipients and their winning entries can be found by accessing the link below or scrolling down the embedded document.
All the best with the rest of the school year and wherever your travels take you in June.
View the entries HERE on your personal device or in the document embedded below.
DP Grade 12 Update
Class of 2021: Congratulations, Graduates!
A HUGE congratulations to the Class of 2021! These students have graduated in what is likely the most challenging year of AISL’s history, and we commend them for their dedication, resilience, and good humour through it all. We are happy to share a beautiful photo gallery from graduation, as well as the formal graduation portraits of our Seniors. If you weren’t able to join us in person or via the livestream, you can watch the recording on AISL’s youtube channel hereor click on the link below.
DP - Class of 2022: Virtual TOK Exhibition
This year's TOK Year 1 teachers, Mr. Trevor Mrak and Mr. Lionel Honnorat, are delighted to announce that the Class of 2022 TOK Exhibition is live and online! The TOK Exhibition is a new mandatory component for TOK, worth 33% of the final course grade for full IB Diploma candidates. The task requires students to explore one TOK question from a list of 35 prompts, by finding and discussing 3 objects (physical or digital) that are relevant to the question.
In the fall, we are also planning on having an on-campus exhibition to benefit the next batch of Grade 11 students entering the DP.
Grade 5 Parent Session from 1 June
Thank you so much to all the Grade 5 parents who joined Dr. Odum, Ms. Smith, Ms. Turner and Mr. Hoffman on Tuesday for an informational session aimed at the parents of incoming Grade 6 students. You can access a copy of the presentation on the following link: Grade 5 Parent session
Last Day of School for Students – 10 June - Noon Dismissal! This year has flown by. We will end the year with a final hybrid farewell assembly from 11:30-12:00 on Thursday, 10 June. Students will be dismissed at noon to begin their well-deserved holiday. The new academic year will begin on 9 August. Please read here for more details about August.
Final PTA Quiz Night on 9 June! Please join us for the last PTA Quiz Night of the year at 18:30 on 9 June at the Palm Pavilion. Entry is K5o per team member with up to four people per team. Teams may bring their own food and drink. Due to COVID-19 restrictions, space is limited and advance sign-up is required. Please sign up here and be sure to enter the names of each team member plus your team name.
Student devices will be collected next week. Your child’s teacher will share timelines. Although we normally do this at this time every year, we did not do it last year due to our pivot to distance learning. Now, having gone two years without service, these devices are badly in need of inspections, testing, and updates, which will be completed over the June/July holiday.
Today, one of our teachers tested positive for COVID-19. Please join me in wishing her a speedy recovery. Given the high levels of compliance with our health and safety protocols, we believe that the risk to students should be low. Nevertheless, out of an abundance of caution, and in accordance with CDC and AISL protocols, Grade 4BM are considered direct contacts so they will move to Path 2 from today. Students who choose to get tested and are negative will be able to return on Thursday, 10 June for the last day of school. Students who are not tested will, unfortunately, not be able to return to campus before they academic year ends. As per CDC guidelines, only direct contacts of a known COVID patient are required to be isolated, thus siblings of the groups listed above are able to proceed as normal. All staff members who had close contact with this teacher have been tested (all negative) and will be isolated as well.
We also learned today of several students and a few faculty members who may have had close contact with a positive COVID-19 case at a social event last weekend. The affected people have been sent home for isolation and the staff members have also been tested (all negative). Based on the timing of this potential exposure and assuming that they do not develop any symptoms, they may return to campus on Monday with a negative test result or Tuesday with no testing required.
Finally, let me take this opportunity to remind everyone in our community to be diligent in adhering to mask-wearing and distancing and to be vigilant in monitoring for symptoms. We know that the number of cases in Lusaka has begun to increase significantly again. If someone in your family develops symptoms, do not just assume it’s a cold or seasonal illness; get tested for COVID-19 so that, if necessary, you can begin treatment and isolation right away. It is important to remember that even if you are fully vaccinated, you may still catch COVID-19 and pass it to others. The vaccination helps reduce the severity of cases but does not make one immune to COVID-19. And, as always, please let us know if anybody in your family or social circle tests positive so that we can investigate the situation for any possible impact on the school.
Click on the link below to enjoy the awesome artwork done by our Grade 6 - Grade 10 students!
The Leopard's Tale is our main medium to keep our families informed on such things as the day to day happenings on campus, after school activities, summaries of any arts and sports events, helpful resources, and important dates and reminders.
Parent Information Sessions
Here are the upcoming sessions – all parents are welcome and encouraged to attend: