IGBIS Newsletter | Issue 184

Dear IGBIS Parents and Community Members,

International Day and 5 Year Celebration on March 16

We are looking forward to seeing all of our community together this Saturday for International Day and our 5 Year Celebration. It is such an important day in the life of the school that we have included it as one of our school days this year! Please arrive in plenty of time to join in the creation of the Number 5 with all the school community at 9am, this will be followed by the opening ceremony.

KLISS Elementary School Athletics

Congratulations to our Elementary School students that took part in the KLISS athletics day hosted by IGBIS this Wednesday. Eight schools attended the event. A huge thank you to all of our PHE staff and other teachers who helped on the day, in particular Ms Ruth Spracklen who coordinated the event. We also appreciated the support from parents who came to cheer along their children and others in the IGBIS team.

Book Week

We hope that you have all enjoyed Book Week and also the opportunity to buy books for your children. These will be available during International Day as well. Thank you Ms Kerri Chan (school librarian) for organising the book fair and all the events this week.

Mrs Anne Fowles | Head of School

Dear Parents/Guardians,

We approached the end of Spirit Week with another fine assembly by Student Council on Thursday. Many students and staff joined in on the themed days to make for a fun and entertaining week, as we now prepare for International Day and the 5 year anniversary. A real highlight of the assembly were presentations on the recent and upcoming student-led initiatives (many of which I mentioned in last week’s newsletter), which parents will see this Saturday. Also of particular interest during the assembly was the data collected and shared by Student Council about our recent timetable changes and the perceptions of students and staff about the change. Members of the Student Council executive team have been involved in the analysis and discussion of the changes, as we reflect on its strengths and limitations, and think about how it can be improved for the future.

This Saturday we will celebrate the diversity of the IGBIS community in what is shaping up to be our best International Day yet, as we celebrate the important milestone of the first five years. I hope to see all of our families on the day, enjoying the celebrations of culture and each other’s company.  

Looking forward we will continue to have major upcoming events on the secondary school calendar. This Monday, March 18th we will be sending off 37 secondary students to participate in KLISS athletics. Students have recently completed units in PHE on athletics so this competition should be a great opportunity to see their development. This upcoming Thursday March 21st is our annual DP Art Exhibition. This is a fantastic event filled with the appreciation of art pieces produced by our senior students, along with musical performances as well. I highly encourage parents to attend – it will begin at 6:30 pm. On the weekend, March 22-24 is EosMUN, hosted at IGBIS. Our MUN (Model United Nations) conference is a great opportunity for students to take the first step in joining the MUN community, through which they will develop a strong and varied set of skills that will serve them well in the future. Sign ups are still open.

Looking further ahead there will be a meeting for interested students and parents for our next service trip to Nepal. Planning for this trip has begun in earnest, and the trip organisers are ready with a call for participants. If interested, please attend the meeting on March 26th at 3pm.

Sincerely yours,

Michael Arcidiacono |Secondary School Principal

I can hardly catch my breath from the multitude of activities that have been happening this week. The book week that has been organised by Ms. Chan and supported by the whole of the school has been a wonderful advert for encouraging students to read and enjoy books. The community has really come together with so many people from all over the school reading to students. Some of these books have had an ‘international/cultural’ theme to them and the library has been a hub for this. Wednesday’s Pajama Day at lunchtime encouraged students to ‘cozy up with a good book’ and it culminated in the classrooms with hot chocolate and a cookie.

The book character day as always was well supported with some fabulous costumes being worn and the fashion parade was a great way to showcase book characters and the books they are in.

This year we also had our very first ’book fair’ which was an easy way to bolster people’s book collections at home. The variety of books catered to every age, with fiction, non fiction, graphic novels, early readers, picture books and collections on offer.

On Wednesday 13th March we hosted the KLISS Elementary Track and Field meet. Over 500 students from nine schools took part on a hot and sticky day! There was a lot of laughter, fun and hard work with many students achieving personal best times and distances. There were a number of medallists and our overall placing of fifth was very credible. Whilst we were hosting and another school was ‘running’ the event, the team of IGBIS staff and support staff made a huge difference to enable it to be a success.

What was great after the event was a group of Grade 4 students who took it upon themselves to take action and facilitate a further clean up of the grandstand area by ensuring all of the plastic was placed in the correct bins. Thank you to Kai Zhi, Alfred and Hariz for initiating this.

Amongst all of this, as I was walking around the school, I noticed that something had changed in the Grade 2 learning lounge. This area is undergoing transformation and I have a feeling it has something to do with plants, and camping, no doubt a response to the ‘Sharing the Planet’ unit they are engaged in.

On weeks like this success can only be achieved by everyone working together as part of a team. There are far too many people to thank individually, but I would like to say a heartfelt thank you to all those who have supported and made this week an enjoyable experience for our students: without you these kinds of weeks cannot happen.

We are looking forward to International Day and our 5 Year anniversary celebrations where I am sure there will be more fun and laughter.

Dates for your diaries

  • Wednesday 27th March: Kopitiam with the ES Principal and PYP Coordinator: 8.00am PVO room
  • Wednesday 27th March: ES Production 1.45 in the Theatre
  • Saturday 31st March – Sunday 7th April: School holiday
  • Thursday 18th April: Kopitiam with the ES Principal and PYP Coordinator: 8.00am PVO room

Simon Millward |Elementary School Principal

In the ungodly hours of Sunday morning, 10th March, the Grade 11 Physics class gathered at the IGBIS turnstiles. Why, you ask? An hour-long bus ride later to the middle of seemingly nowhere, we arrived at KTJ to participate in the annual Oxbridge Engineering Workshop.

Organised by KTJ, the Institute of Engineering and Technology (IET) and the Oxbridge Society of Malaysia, this workshop was aimed at highschool students that would potentially apply to universities to study engineering. We aspiring engineers rarely get any pre-university experience in engineering due to the high skill requirements of the field, so this was a great chance to challenge our theoretical knowledge and mingle with students from other schools.

The IGBIS students were integrated into separate groups consisting of students from various other schools. Thrown together with little time to get to know the others, we were presented a task: build a crane to transport as many loads as possible in a three-minute timeframe whilst navigating through ‘roads’ and over ‘buildings’. In addition, we had to design, build and program a motion sensor-based traffic light to stop the flow of traffic when the crane moved across roads, and to enable pedestrians to trigger the light and safely cross. We were given nearly four hours to complete the task. Sounds like plenty of time right? Wrong. There was a catch—many catches actually. Along with the challenge we were given several pages of rules that, if broken, would result in marks deducted. This made our already daunting task even harder.

Time passed quickly once the creation process started. Some of us worked on the electronics and traffic lights, some of us measured out our testing track, and others brainstormed innovative adaptations of the crane. Although many of us were new to dealing with electronics and moving models, we were able to work through tight spots together. There were also several Oxbridge and IET supervisors to help us, often by dropping us vague hints that got us thinking, or sometimes leaving us more confused than before. With time pressuring us, the last 20 minutes were perhaps the most productive, despite all my code for my group’s traffic light getting deleted 30 minutes before the time was up! All the groups managed to finish up just in time to present the best version of our creations that we could develop within four hours.

Judging took place group by group. We had a mere three minutes to demonstrate the work we had done in four hours. Some groups created the spitting image of a crane, whilst others were more innovative and turned their cranes into a crane-boom truck hybrid. The overall feeling of accomplishment, for us to be able to produce something so efficient within a few hours, was enough to leave us satisfied. Prizes and certificates were awarded afterwards for the Best Overall Team and the Most Innovative Team. This experience was not just something on our applications meant to impress universities, but something that helped us grow in our cooperative skills and apply our knowledge in real-life situations.

Clarissa Teh |Grade 11

This semester the first unit in Chinese language for Grade 1 and 2 students has been about healthy diets. Students explored the unit through hands-on activities, such as making fruit salad and ‘bear toast’. During the activity, they demonstrated great passions of being risk-takers, and tried their best to taste various flavours. We then inquired into healthy and less healthy food. Students categorised the groups of food in terms of healthy and unhealthy, and showed curiosity about why some ingredients are less healthy compared to others. We also agreed that everything should be taken in moderation in order to keep a healthy and balanced diet.

After analysing the nutrition pyramid, students decided to take notes of their daily meals for one week and reflected on their daily diet. In addition, students shared the signature dishes from their home countries in class. They also discussed and compared the differences between Chinese cuisine and Western cuisine.

We were very pleased to witness their enthusiasm of learning the language and culture this semester.

The Elementary Chinese Team

On Wednesday 13th March, 45 IGBIS Elementary athletes took part in the KLISS Track and Field event. The team consisted of Grade 2 to 5 students, and nearly every event had an IGBIS representative! It was a very hot day and the athletes did so well to compete in the heat.

Across the events IGBIS earned a large number of silverware, with top three placings in a variety of field events. The strengths and size of other schools looked like it was going to be a tough challenge for our smaller team, however our incredible athletes rose to the occasion and held their fifth position from last year!

A huge congratulations to the team, and a big thank you to all those who came to support.

An even bigger thank you must go to the PHE department and to Ms Chotard and Mr McDermott for their incredible teaching and coaching. Without such, the team would not have come together.


Ruth Spracklan |Athletics Director