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Head of Seria Campus Message

Enabling our students to be globally aware and international citizens remains a key priority. One area of Primary curriculum development will be to balance the work on Brunei History and Culture with a programme focussing on global citizenship and intercultural learning. Over the past 2 weeks our students, learning inter-culturally, have participated alongside fellow students across the Federation of British International Schools in Asia.

Last week 48 students and 3 members of staff joined the FOBISIA math code breaking challenge hosted by the British International School in Phuket. The children worked individually and in pairs to solve a number of clues encoded in binary, morse and Cesar shift to name a few, to reveal secret passwords which helped them progress to the next clue. Our students showed great resilience in using a variety of tools, problem solving skills and logical thought to crack the codes! Governments and companies that deal in digital data are always on the look out for talented code breaking mathematicians - so who knows, one of our ISB Seria students could turn this new skill into a profession!

Author: Mrs McCready

Given our FOBISIA participation was one rooted in Maths, I thought it would be most appropriate to share more about ISB’s focus on Maths Mastery. In a nutshell, as stated by Dr. Helen Drury (Director of Mathematics Mastery) “in Mathematics, you know you’ve mastered something when you can apply it to a totally new problem in an unfamiliar situation.”

Maths Mastery is a teaching and learning approach that develops deep conceptual understanding of Math's. The whole class group moves through the content at the same pace; keep up, not catch up. This approach enables students to think deeply about Maths and builds self-confidence. Differentiation is achieved through depth rather than acceleration.

In Maths, we aim to ensure that all students:

  • become fluent in the fundamentals of mathematics, including through varied and frequent practice with increasingly complex problems over time, so that students develop conceptual understanding and the ability to recall and apply knowledge rapidly and accurately

  • reason mathematically by following a line of enquiry, conjecturing relationships and generalisations, and developing an argument, justification or proof using mathematical language

  • can solve problems by applying their mathematics to a variety of routine and non-routine problems with increasing sophistication, including breaking down problems into a series of simpler steps and persevering in seeking solutions

Having read my previous newsletters, you will be very aware of how much I reference the importance of having an effective home-school relationship. Pardon the attempt at trying to sound mathematical (I started my career as a language teacher), the square root of all things we do in school = the students and their outcomes. We understand that many parents feel like Maths has changed and that it’s sometimes difficult to keep up to date with modern teaching methods. To further strengthen our parental partnership and collaboration, we have teamed up with White Rose Maths to create a mini-series to help parents understand the methods we use in school when teaching Maths concepts.

For those in our community who wish to dive deeper into Math @ISB, I encourage you to click and read the following:

Reminders/Special Mentions

  • Packed Food and Drink should be nutritious, age appropriate and healthy to support our students to learn. Fizzy, sports and energy drinks are not permitted in school.

  • Parent Teacher Consultations will be in Week 9 on the 17th & 18th of October. More details to follow.

  • The 1SB mission remains priority – thank you to the entire community for the support offered in making our joint Y7 Bandar and Seria Trip to Malaysia a success.

  • Thank you Mrs McCready for leading and coordinating our FOBISIA math challenge participation.

  • Y2 are leading our assembly next week.

  • We completed successfully our Evacuation Drill this week. A big thank you to all students and staff for following our protocols.

  • Next leadership-parental coffee morning – date tbc

  • You can always message our teachers on Seesaw!

  • Follow us on Insta

PRE-KG – by Teacher Julia

The Pre-Kindy children learnt about shapes this week through various class activities and on Wednesday, they took part in a shape hunt. They enjoyed the challenge of looking for, finding and identifying shapes in and around their environment. We also started with number recitation and sang nursery rhymes, '5 green speckled frogs', 'and There were 10 on the bed' to support their learning. Another fun week in PK!

Kindy – by Teacher Chio

For the past two weeks, Kindy students were focusing on ‘The Gingerbread man’. They enjoyed participating in fun activities such as retelling the story in their own words using puppets, completing the gingerbread man dot design using Q-tip and colouring. This week, they were creative and artistic- making and painting a colourful sun catcher in the shape of a Gingerbread Man as well as completing Gingerbread inspired portraits. In phonics, they learnt to identify instrumental sounds. In Math, they learnt to compare the sizes of objects using Mathematical language and practised their number symbol recognition through fishing games. In scientific inquiry, they continued their 'Shadow' exploration by drawing the shadows of objects and asking how shadows are made.

Reception – by Mrs Davies

Crocodile class has been very energetic for the last couple of weeks. They have continued to learn phase 2 phonics. The children can say the sound of the letter, sing the song and do the correct actions. It has been wonderful to hear their voices and enthusiasm. Also, they have begun to blend the sounds and write a few CVC words. In math, they have looked at making sets, recognising whether they are equal or unequal. In continuous provision, they carried out the math skills they had learned into and through their play. The children were excited to turn the classroom into a cafe, setting the table with plates and cups for the correct number of customers. In topic, the children talked about their family and their family members. Also, they drew a picture of their home with their family members. Reception children enjoyed creating a giant collage crocodile. They were introduced to Dough Disco, which helped develop their fine motor skills.

Year 1 - by Ms MJ

Year 1 children had a fulfilling past two weeks. They have started learning about their five senses. Children conducted a simple science experiment to see the importance of sight and sound in their everyday lives. They went out for a sound walk too. Children also created half self-portraits and attempted writing simple sentences to describe themselves. Lastly, they have been working really hard to retell the story of ‘We’re Going on a Bear Hunt’ by Michael Rosen. They were excited to present what they have learnt at the class assembly. Well done everyone!

Year 2 – by Ms Lisa

Year 2 have had a wonderful couple of weeks. They started a new topic with the book Meerkat Mail. They have enjoyed learning about a new animal, the meerkat, and how it lives in the Kalahari desert. They’ve also loved discussing the similarities and differences between Antarctica from their last unit and the Kalahari desert now. In Math they’ve learned new techniques of finding number bonds to ten and using that knowledge to apply it to other math problems. Some have enjoyed the challenge but it’s wonderful to see them thinking critically and helping each other.

Year 3 – by Mrs McCready

Year 3 have enjoyed innovating their own rags to riches stories these past two weeks and including ambitious adjectives to add detail. In science they have investigated how muscles work in pairs by making their own models and in topic they are using art to explore symmetrical patterns in nature. Math has seen them working towards mastering addition with exchange and solving word problems to cement their understanding. A great two weeks of learning!

Year 4 – by Mr Davies

Year 4 began to create their own civilisation after reading the book ‘Weslandia’ for inspiration. They designed their own flag and decided on the climate and location of their new country. In Math we completed a place value assessment and began our new addition and subtraction topic. In art Cobra class started a coil pottery activity. In English we began a myth writing unit by writing character descriptions. In science Year 4 completed a mini-beast hunt and classified the creatures they found by using a microscope.

Year 5 – by Mr Russel

Year 5 have created fact posters about the planets in our solar system. They also started looking at physical and human geography in their host or home country, using examples to create a PowerPoint Presentation. In math, pupils have looked at different methods to solve addition and subtraction questions with numbers greater than four digits. In English, they have continued to experiment with language techniques which will help ‘show, not tell’ the reader how characters are feeling.

Year 6 – by Mr Ramsden

The great learning continues in Year 6! The students have been doing a great job getting to grips with common factors and multiples. In English, they have shown improving understanding of different types of words and sentences. Importantly they are now starting to apply them to their writing. In Topic they are concluding their unit on online safety, and they continue to read and study their intriguing text for the term 'The Explorer'.

Year 7 – By Ms Rebekah

In Year 7 we have been focusing on class cohesion - thinking about others around us and how we can encourage, motivate and help each other to learn. We did some team building exercises; guessing the drawings on our backs along the line and a riddle treasure hunt. This week, with most of the group away on the Y7 trip, we designed, planned and painted a classroom mural to express ourselves in our environment. We also went on a class trip to the Seria Energy Lab which was a hands-on learning experience.

Dariush Saheli Head of Seria Campus

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