The Secondary Grade 6 - 10 MAP (Measures of Academic Progress) will take place in the mornings of the week of September 27 - October 1st. We highly recommend that if your child has not taken these tests before that you attend the Parent Information Session about MAP Growth Assessments on Tuesday, 21 September, from 09:00-10:00 in the Tiyende Pamodzi Theater. Please enter campus through the Secondary gate. This will be an overview of what the MAP Growth Assessments are and how we use the data to differentiate learning. It will be particularly geared towards families in G3-G10 whose child is taking MAP Growth Assessments for the first time.
So, as some of you may know, I am a big fan of American Football. Being from Texas, this is something of a cultural expectation, and one that I happily rise up to meet.
This past weekend I spent more than a fair amount of time watching college football. I watched traditional powerhouses plow over weaker opponents. I saw massive underdogs rise up to defeat traditional powers (who is Jacksonville State?). I also saw teams with amazing potential play horrendous football because they could not adjust to change. Unfortunately, this last example is best exemplified by my Texas A&M Aggies, but the season is still early.
What sports taught me is that “potential” only matters up until the game starts, and what happened when this game started? We were forced by an injury to pivot to a new situation, and adjust our plans to account for change. The big takeaway here is that you can have all the best individuals, with all the talent in the world. You can have the best plan, with contingencies mapped out in excruciating detail. You can have the best intentions, and security in your ethical correctness. None of that matters until you are expected to improvise in the face of the unexpected.
That is something we try to instill in our kids at AISL. It would be very straightforward to prepare them for their futures if this was 30 or 40 years ago. Things were more set then. Today we have to build in them the skills to quickly analyze and adapt to changing environments. One of the most prevalent cliches in education is that “we are preparing kids for jobs that don’t yet exist.” Too often this is interpreted as being simply a call for more STEAM education. That’s not how I read it.
The way I see it is that we need to prepare our kids to decode, interpret, analyze, plan and execute in the face of constant and unrelenting change, the pace of which accelerates as technology advances. That is what traditional education lacks, and the big advantage of the IB framework.
A few logistical items:
For further clarification please refer to the attendance policy in the Secondary Handbook.
Thanks to you all. AISL wouldn’t be the same without you. Have a great weekend!
Dr. Rick Odum
Preparations for the Primary Talent Show are underway and we are so excited! This year, we have 31 students who have created original performances. In the coming days, there will be two rehearsals in the theater so that the students will be prepared for the final performance.
On the performance day, which will be Friday, 24 September at 11:00, we would like to invite one parent per performer to join us physically in the audience in the Tiyende Pamodzi Theater. For the remaining audience members, we will live stream the event for everyone to see. The link will be shared soon. We are so grateful to be able to “revive” one of our favourite performing arts events at AISL!
For any final questions pertaining to the Primary Talent Show, please contact Natalie Coombs at email@example.com. Thank you.
The PE swimming unit will begin on Monday, 4 October 2021 and will end on Friday, 10 December, 2021. Please take note that students from KG-G5 will swim twice every week during their regular PE days/times according to the class schedule. ELC students, on the other hand, will be split into two groups with one group swimming while the other group has a dry PE lesson. This will alternate each week.
For swimming, please pack the following in a small bag (remembering that all items need to be labeled)
Swimsuit (girls required to wear one-piece suits)
Swim cap - a MUST have for all students
Goggles (optional) only IF they are certain they will use them
No flotation devices are necessary
Students must come dressed in their PE uniform and appropriate shoes even if they are swimming during the lesson. This is so that they are ready to participate in a dry PE lesson in the event that swimming is canceled (e.g. due to weather conditions).
For any information/queries regarding swimming please send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Our students are very excited about the shift this week from class ‘bubbles’ to grade-level ‘bubbles’. Due to the low number of COVID cases, our current physical-distancing guidelines, and students wearing their masks responsibly, we are looking forward to increasing opportunities for student engagement between grade-level classes. Beginning on Wednesday, 15 September, both classes in a grade-level will be able to interact with each other during outdoor play, Modern Language classes, and grade-level collaborative projects. You can imagine the joy when we shared the news with the children!
Beginning the week of 20 September, our G3-G10 students will complete their Fall session of the Measures of Academic Progress (MAP) Growth assessments. These assessments provide teachers with valuable data that they can use to differentiate instruction for your child. Over the course of three weeks, each student will complete an assessment in math, reading and language usage. The tests are scheduled during class time and are proctored by teachers. Students who need extra time to complete their tests will have make-up sessions in which they can do so. We ask that students get a good night’s sleep, eat a healthy breakfast and snack, and arrive at school on time in order to set them up well for the assessments.
The Principals will be hosting a Parent Information Session about MAP Growth Assessments on Tuesday, 21 September, from 09:00-10:00 in the Tiyende Pamodzi Theater. Please enter campus through the Secondary gate. This will be an overview of what the MAP Growth Assessments are and how we use the data to differentiate learning. It will be particularly geared towards families in G3-G10 whose child is taking MAP Growth Assessments for the first time.
Dear AISL Community
On Monday and Wednesday this week, I met with a sizable group of parents to begin to get to know the community. What a lovely experience it was. There is such positive energy from our very diverse parents.
I asked the parents the four following questions:
Strengths - What are AISL’s greatest strengths and Why?
Opportunities - What can AISL do better? Why do you say that?
Aspirations - What do you aspire AISL to be and why
Results - How will we know what has been achieved? Why do we need to know?
This made for some very rich data and dialogue, which will frame strategy going forward. Thank you to all the parents who took the time to attend, and I look forward to meeting with the third group of parents tomorrow morning, outside the Tuck Shop.
For those of you who couldn’t make it and would like to contribute, please give your opinions here AISL SOAR Survey,
How is/are your child(ren) learning and why?
This is a question we must frequently ask. In simple terms, at the end of this week of learning ask:
As a result of my learning this week (ask them to complete the sentence)
The Conversations Continue
Thank you to all the parents who have reached out regarding our current COVID regulations and the use of our facilities. For the former, in the coming weeks we will reconvene our COVID Task Force to re-evaluate the decisions made in the last school year and for the latter, please continue to enjoy the Use of AISL Facilities during the Weekends for this month. This, too, will be re-evaluated, regarding further re-opening next month.
Finally, owing to a family medical situation (my father), I have been advised to go back to the UK as soon as possible. So for the short term, Ms Darlene Huson will be Acting Director. I will remain online as much as I can. Thank you all for your understanding at this time.
With kind regards,
Dr. Oli Tooher-Hancock
American International School of Lusaka
AISL has adopted the Association of International Schools in Africa (AISA) Child Protection Personal Safety Curriculum. This curriculum is a research-based initiative designed especially for international school students.
This program will include age-appropriate information about maintaining personal safety and raising awareness about physical abuse, emotional abuse, sexual abuse, and neglect for all students in Grades 6-12. These classes are a core element of AISL’s plan to protect our students’ right to be safe.
These lessons will be led by Ms. Driekie Smith (Gr6-10) and will be held over the next several weeks. In each grade, the following key concepts and skills will be addressed:
IDENTIFY - Students will learn how to identify safe and unsafe situations
ACCESS - Students will learn how to access support structures
ACT - Students will learn how to act to stay safe
VALUE - Students will learn how to value themselves and others
Your child will receive a range of exercises to be completed at school. Please use this opportunity to engage in meaningful conversation regarding protection with your child. Children are more likely to use safety rules when they have multiple opportunities to practice and talk about the topic with their parents and family. You play an essential role in helping your child know how to stay safe!
For more information, please feel free to contact Ms. Smith.
Mrs. Driekie Smith
AISL Secondary School Counselor
Our Personal and Social Education (PSE) curriculum supports our students in developing their social and emotional well-being and is part of the Advisory program and classroom lessons. Our Grade 11-12 students have the following PSE lessons planned during Advisory lessons:
Quarter 1 - Grade 12
Romantic Relationships and Dating; Families
Love, Marriage and Lifetime Commitments
Reproductive and Sexual Anatomy and Physiology
Human Sexual Response and Sexual Dysfunction
Sexuality, Meida, and the Arts
Quarter 1 - Grade 11
Sexual decision-making, sexual communication, relationship assertiveness and negotiation
Parents can reinforce learning at home by sharing what they know about these subjects. They can share their family’s, culture’s, and religion’s perspective on these aspects of Personal and Social Education.
If you would like your child to opt out of any of these lessons, just send an e-mail to your child’s Advisor and make sure your child knows. If you have any questions, you can contact your child’s Advisor.
The listed PSE lessons will be led by our Advisors, Counselor, and Biology teachers.
Our Personal and Social Education curriculum integrates the IB’s beliefs about PSE together with the Guidelines for Comprehensive Sexuality Education 3rd Edition from the Sexuality-Information and Education Council of the United States in order to provide a well-balanced program for our students. You can find our Personal and Social Education Handbook here.
Our advisory programme is developing this year. We are committed to creating an even more wholesome and cohesive curriculum that will nurture our students’ ATL skills and international mindedness.
We are excited about what is to come and will keep our community informed about all the new and exciting activities on the way.
(Please note: these are programs provided and administered by entities outside of AISL. If you are interested in participating, or have any questions, please direct your correspondence to the sponsoring institution)
Future Doctors Program by Harvard Student Agencies:
Duration: 2 weekends (over 9 days)
Fees: USD 240
Program Start Date - 18th September 2021
Program details HERE.
Harvard Student Agencies Young Leaders in Entrepreneurship and Innovation:
Duration: 2 weekends over 9 Days
Fees: USD 240
Program Start Date - 18th September 2021
Program details HERE.
To apply HERE.
Harvard Student Agencies program on Scholars in Communication:
Duration: 4 weeks (only Saturdays);
Fees: USD 250
Program Start Date: 18th September 2021
Eligibility: Grades 7-12
Program details HERE.
To Apply HERE.
Fall AI Program for Middle and High School Students Taught by Stanford/MIT Graduate Students
AI Scholars Live Online is a 10-session, 25-hour enrichment program that introduces middle and high school students to fundamental artificial intelligence concepts in order to work through socially impactful projects in areas including art, healthcare, education, and more. Developed and taught by our team of graduate students from Stanford and MIT, students receive a personalized, interdisciplinary learning experience with a student-instructor ratio of 5:1. Students may apply to our program here by September 10th, and can find more detailed course information on our website and brochure. You can also read more about our vision on Forbes. For information on our middle school programs, please visit our website to learn more. Please contact Program Manager, Aidan Goltra at email@example.com or call our team at +1 (240) 226-1366 with any questions. Thank you!
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: