Friday, 30 November 2018

Youcubed


I attended Longwood College in the United States many years ago where I earned my bachelor’s degree in elementary education. In addition, I took extra reading / literature classes to earn a reading endorsement allowing me to teach in that area from grades K-12. Later I went on to earn my master’s degree as a reading specialist. I assumed I would do something with reading when I embarked on my journey in earning my doctoral degree. As they say, life got in the way.

In my first year as elementary principal at ABA, there was concern voiced by middle school teachers and parents that our elementary students were not proficient in recalling their multiplication facts. I set out with my doctoral dissertation to determine if a) that were true, and b), if so, why not? The title of my dissertation was The Effect of Matheletics.com Technology on Basic Multiplication Fact Fluency.

In writing a dissertation, one requirement is to compose a Literature Review chapter. This chapter is dedicated to the most current research where one reads peer reviewed articles, research and other dissertations in the subject area as well as the surrounding supporting aspects of the subject. One area of my literature review focused on the importance of understanding multiplication at the conceptual level. I took this information back to our teachers for us to consider.

The teachers and I have met together to read and speak of how the PYP believes children learn mathematics. We learned what the most recent research says about the importance of children’s conceptual understanding in the context of mathematics and how this influences later mathematics learning. The research is clear, when a child does not know what it means to multiply numbers conceptually, even the memorization of multiplication basic facts becomes more challenging. The research is also clear that it is not an “either / or” approach in pedagogy. Procedural learning is important in learning mathematics. However, Rittle-Johnson and Alibali found that children with greater conceptual understanding tend to have better procedural skills. In other words, procedural teaching, although and important educational piece, must go hand in hand with the teaching of conceptual understanding in mathematics.

Stanford University mathematics professor Jo Boaler, who I have mentioned in previous newsletters, has influenced me in how I believe teachers should be teaching mathematics to our children. She has been recently recognized as the twelfth most influential person in education. I would encourage you to visit the website to learn more about her revolution in how we teach math.

As Boaler repeatedly states, “Viva La Revolucion”.

Dr. Michael Berry
Head of Primary

Week 14 of the Primary Weekly Correspondance

Primary Weekly Correspondance

  • Our Learning Journey ConcertThe LJC is our end of semester celebration and will be held tomorrow, 1st December 2018. Every class will be sharing their learning through song, dance, and drama. Students will arrive at the Kallang Theater at 9:00 am and will be taken by their teachers in the auditorium lobby. The Concert will begin at 10:00 am. The show will last approximately one hour. Although the theater is spacious, there are only enough seats to allow 3 tickets for each family. Doors will open for parents to be seated at 9:45. Parents will collect their children at the end of the concert from the classroom teacher - JY in the theatre lobby, EY in their theatre seats. All children will be checked off a class list by the teacher when their child is collected. For the safety of our students, please be patient with us as we try to ensure each child is successfully transferred to their parents. 
  • Parent Cafe - Mathematics (5 Dec)Join us for a Parent Cafe in which we will explore and learn more about Mathematics at Chatsworth.

    In this Parent Cafe you will learn about the latest Math Research, our Maths curriculum and visit classrooms. We will also share an exciting opportunity to learn and study online with us as we form a collective understanding of the importance of Jo Boaler's Mathematical Mindsets.

    Date: 5 December 2018
    Time: 0900 - 1100
    Venue: Discovery Centre (Room 4D)
    RSVP your seats here.
  • Free Dress Day - December 7thThe theme this month is Superhero Day, should your child want to participate (it is not mandatory). There will not be a fee for this event. (Any JY student who wishes to play in the house football game should change into their house shirt and running shoes at lunch.)
  • Christmas Celebration (11 Dec)More details here.
    Students are encouraged to come dressed in red, white and green, or in any Christmas outfit.

Friday, 23 November 2018

Learning Journey Concert

On Saturday December 1, Chatsworth International School -- Orchard Campus will be presenting the “Our Learning Journey Concert” at Kallang Theater. There has been much preparation in readying each of our students for their time to shine on the large stage at Kallang.

Although these showcases are aesthetically pleasing for the audience, there are many aspects to teaching and learning that take place in the design and performance of the show.

Firstly, we try to allow as much student agency in how the presentation will look and sound. Students are very much a part in the design of their performance. Next, as the children begin to practice, they decide on what parts of the performance are working well for them, and what needs to be rethought to better their exhibition. This reflective piece is important to the students as they learn to analyze their actions and collaborate with their peers working together toward a common goal. Finally, during the actual show, the exhibit that they are risk-takers by being on the stage and presenting their learning confidently in front of approximately 1,000 people. There is much more to the learning journey than simply viewing the show.

I want to thank all the teachers, teaching assistants and the children for their effort.

As a reminder:

Our Learning Journey Concert is our end of semester celebration and will be held on 1st December 2018. Every class will be sharing their learning through song, dance, and drama. Students will arrive at the Kallang Theater at 9:00 am and will be taken by their teachers in the auditorium lobby. The Concert will begin at 10:00 am. The show will last approximately one hour. Although the theater is spacious, there are only enough seats to allow 3 tickets for each family. Doors will open for parents to be seated at 9:45.


Dr. Michael Berry
Head of Primary

Week 13 of the Primary Weekly Correspondance

Primary Weekly Correspondance
  • CCA/ECA Booklet
  • Here is the link for the website with the CCA/ECA booklet for Session 2. CCA sign-ups will close 25 November. CCA assignments will be sent to your email on Monday, 26 November. ECA sign-ups will then begin 27 November. New ECA options have been added.

  • Bukit Timah Campus Open HouseOur wonderful Bukit Timah campus will be holding an Open House for parents and families interested in coming to Chatsworth Bukit Timah.

    We would greatly appreciate your help in spreading the word to your friends who might be looking for a school in Singapore.

    Details are on our website link HERE



  • Parent Cafe - Mathematics (5 Dec)
    Join us for a Parent Cafe in which we will explore and learn more about Mathematics at Chatsworth.

    In this Parent Cafe you will learn about the latest Math Research, our Maths curriculum and visit classrooms. We will also share an exciting opportunity to learn and study online with us as we form a collective understanding of the importance of Jo Boaler's Mathematical Mindsets.

    Date: 5 December 2018
    Time: 0900 - 1100
    Venue: Discovery Centre (Room 4D)
    RSVP your seats here.
  • Christmas Celebration (11 Dec)More details here.

Friday, 16 November 2018

Prespective from the PYP Coordinator

It has been an especially exciting week for our Year 5 and Year 6 students as they went for their residential camps. The camps were a roaring success with the students gaining confidence, developing their social skills and enjoying risk-taking in a safe and challenging outdoor environment.

For the Year 6 students, the highlights included: archery tag, raft building, hiking, climbing, outdoors and eating toasted marshmallows. For our Year 5 cohort, the students loved sea kayaking, mountain biking and outdoor cooking.





On campus, we have been working towards our Learning Journey concert which is our end of Semester celebration. Like last year, we will be using the Kallang Theatre. The performance will begin at 10 am on Saturday the 1st of December and is expected to run for about an hour. We kindly request that students be at the venue by 9:30 am at the latest so that they may take their positions. The event will not be a formally ticketed event as we are confident that the Theatre will have enough seating for our community. We have planned for each student to have a maximum of 3 visitors supporting their performance. Should you require more seats please reach out to your homeroom teacher.



Michael Jarvis Lucchesi
Primary Years Coordinator

Week 12 of the Primary Weekly Correspondance

Primary Weekly Correspondance

  • CPG Coffee Morning (19 Nov)Please join us Monday, 19 November 2018 at 9:00am in the Discovery Centre (4D). We’ll have coffee, snacks and info about upcoming events like the Learning Journey Concert and Chatsworth’s annual Christmas Bazaar.

    We look forward to seeing you there!

    The CPG TeamPlease RSVP via: cpg-orc@chatsworth.com.sg.

    What: CPG Coffee Morning
    When: November 19, 2018 (Monday)
                9:00 a.m.
    Where: Room 4D (Discovery Centre)
  • Lissy Puno - Domestic talk for helpersDate: 21 November 2018
    Time: 10.00 - 11.30am
    Venue: Main Hall

    More details here.
  • ECA Open House (23 Nov)Come and see all the different activities available for your children in Session 2.

    Date: 23 November 2018
    Time: 8.30-9.30
    Venue: Main Hall

    Here is the link for the website with the CCA/ECA booklet for Session 2. CCA sign-ups are open now and will continue through 25 November. ECA sign-ups will begin 27 November. Check out all your great options. Students may sign up for a maximum of 3 CCAs. Please access SchoolsBuddy through this link: Chatsworth-orchard.schoolsbuddy.net

  • Christmas Celebration (11 Dec)More details here.
  • Bukit Timah Campus Open HouseOur wonderful Bukit Timah campus will be holding an Open House for parents and families interested in coming to Chatsworth Bukit Timah.

    We would greatly appreciate your help in spreading the word to your friends who might be looking for a school in Singapore.

    Details are on our website link HERE



  • Parent Cafe - Mathematics (5 Dec)
    Join us for a Parent Cafe in which we will explore and learn more about Mathematics at Chatsworth.

    In this Parent Cafe you will learn about the latest Math Research, our Maths curriculum and visit classrooms. We will also share an exciting opportunity to learn and study online with us as we form a collective understanding of the importance of Jo Boaler's Mathematical Mindsets.

    Date: 5 December 2018
    Time: 0900 - 1100
    Venue: Discovery Centre (Room 4D)
    RSVP your seats here.

Friday, 9 November 2018

Week 11 of the Primary Weekly Correspondance

Primary Weekly Correspondance
  • School Photographs 2018/19
    More details here.
  • ECA Open House (23 Nov)
    Come and see all the different activities available for your children in Session 2.
    Date: 23 November 2018
    Time: 8.30-9.30
    Venue: Main Hall

    Session 2 ECA/CCA dates are from 21 January 2019 - 15 March 2019
    Registration for Session 2
    - CCA: 19 November 2018
    - ECA: 26 November 2018
  • Bukit Timah Campus Open House (24 Nov)Our wonderful Bukit Timah campus will be holding an Open House for parents and families interested in coming to Chatsworth Bukit Timah.

    We would greatly appreciate your help in spreading the word to your friends who might be looking for a school in Singapore.

    Details are on this email, and also on our website link HERE




  • Parent Cafe - Mathematics (5 Dec)
    Join us for a Parent Cafe in which we will explore and learn more about Mathematics at Chatsworth.
    In this Parent Cafe you will learn about the latest Math Research, our Maths curriculum and visit classrooms. We will also share an exciting opportunity to learn and study online with us as we form a collective understanding of the importance of Jo Boaler's Mathematical Mindsets.

    Date: 5 December 2018
    Time: 0900 - 1100
    Venue: Discovery Centre (Room 4D)
    RSVP your seats here.

Friday, 26 October 2018

Sunscreen

Sunscreen

A few parents have enquired into shading the play areas on the Orchard Campus. Chatsworth has been at our Emerald Hill location since 1998 and since that time there has not been covering over any of the play spaces. The spaces have not changed but the equipment has been updated. Children have been playing in all of our outdoor spaces prior to this year but they are now enjoying additional equipment.

We have a 'no hat, no play' policy and children are repeatedly reminded to drink plenty of water. There are shaded areas around the school where children can retreat from the midday sun if they feel hot or tired and we have numerous staff on duty during all breaks to watch for any signs of fatigue or injury.

We would like to encourage students to wear sunscreen while here at school. Although we cannot apply the sunscreen to the children, we can help remind them to do so before going out to enjoy their breaks. Should you want your child to apply sunscreen before they go out to play, please ensure you pack some in their bag that they will bring to school.

Below you will find a few links that could be useful. The first video shows parents the proper way to apply sunscreen. We would encourage all parents to apply sunscreen to your child before coming to school each morning.

We will also have the teachers share the famous Slip, Slop, Slap videos in class and perhaps in assemblies to help the children remember to “lather up” before they go out to break.


Parent how to video applying sunscreen to your child
Parent tips of how to get children to wear sunscreen
Slip, Slop, Slap 80’s version
Slip, Slop, Slap 2009

Should you have questions please do not hesitate to contact me or your child’s teacher.

Dr. Michael Berry
Head of Primary - Orchard Campus

Week 9 Primary Weekly Correspondance

  • PTSC (Parent-Teacher-Student Conference) (29-30 Oct)
Please note that students will attend their conferences with their parents but there are no classes on both days.


  • Deepavali Celebration (2 November 2018)
Children are encouraged to come to school in either traditional Indian attire or yellow/gold clothing to support the celebration and show school spirit.

This year on Friday, 2 November, we will be celebrating Deepavali - the Hindu festival of light. We will begin with a whole school assembly in the Sports Hall; parents are welcome to attend the celebration. The Assembly is from 9:15 - 9:45 and will feature student and parent dancers. 

From 10:30-11:30 in the morning, classes will be celebrating the festival by joining together with their buddy classes to engage in different cultural activities, from storytelling to decorating diyas. The back gate area will be decorated with a rangoli. Thank you for those who have volunteered to help with the celebration. If you are interested in coming in to assist with the planned activities, please contact your child's homeroom teacher. Usually, only one or two parents are needed for these sessions to work well. We will be individually making paper diyas and paper plate rangolis with glitter, glue, paint, and sequins.

Due to its popularity last year, the CPG mums will once again run the Deepavali Photo Booth. Our beautiful backdrop will be based in the Main Hall on the stage and we welcome you to come in for photos with your children before or after school if that suits. Teachers will also have a chance to schedule a time for their classes to have their photos made.

  • Parent Cafe - New Learning Spaces in Chatsworth
Explore and learn more about our new Kindergarten initiatives: The Perceptual Motor Programme and our Discovery Centre.

Date: 7 November 2018
Time: 0900 - 1100
Venue: Discovery Centre (Room 4D)

RSVP your seat here.

Friday, 12 October 2018

UN DAY

Chatsworth International School is a microcosm of the the larger world. Currently there are approximately 50 nationalities represented across both the Orchard and the Bukit Timah campuses. This internationalism within our school is something that is embraced and celebrated every day. However, this past Thursday, we were very explicit in showing our pride in our school and the many different cultures that make up our Chatsworth community.

UN Day is celebrated in many international schools globally. It is a time to remind us of how fortunate we are to be in a learning environment that is truly diverse. The hidden curriculum at Chatsworth should not be underestimated in helping our children learn and develop attitudes that will benefit them for years to come. As an International Baccalaureate (IB) World School, we strive to develop our students academically, socially and emotionally. Helping to create children with a positive world view is a goal for all IB schools. We simply want our students to be responsible, global citizens.

When reflecting on our own UN Day this past week, there were many highlights. It was wonderful to see how the children took great pride in representing their home country and they did so in many ways. Students arrived to campus all wearing colorful clothing that one would find in their home countries. As they paraded around the campus, the colors associated with the country and their flags was wonderful to see.

Under the tutelage of Ms. Rebecca Hamer, our JY students demonstrated their learning from their dance class. Each class showcased a typical dance from a region of the world. As usual, the children were confident while being on stage.

However, for most students (and adults) the most popular element of UN Day is, unquestionably, the tasting of foods representing so many cultures. Children typically are risk takers and tend to try foods they would not usually have the opportunity to eat. Sharing these meals also gives us all another lens in which to look at culture.

Organizing UN Day is not small feat. There are many people to thank including Rebecca Burke and the TA’s and Kim Riemer, our Assistant Head of Primary for all of their support. Of course, without parent support, this event could not occur. We all appreciate our parent community and I thank you for your never ending effort to support Chatsworth.

Here are just a few photos from the celebration.


Dr Michael Berry
Head of Primary

Week 8 of the Primary Weekly Correspondance

Primary Weekly Correspondence

  • SeeSaw Parent Info SessionDate: 23 October 2018
    Time: 9am
    More details here
  • Parent Cafe - New Learning Spaces in Chatsworth Explore and learn more about our new Kindergarten initiatives: The Perceptual Motor Programme and our Discovery Centre.

    Date: 7 November 2018
    Time: 0900 - 1100
    Venue: Discovery Centre (Room 4D)

    RSVP your seat here.
  • November Lunch Menu

Saturday, 6 October 2018

New Initiatives

We have now completed about 8 weeks of school. The “new” campus has now grown to feel comfortable to us all. Routines and procedures have been set in place and we feel that we are now running very smoothly across the Primary School.

During our parent orientation evening, I remarked that we had done a great deal of work to our school over the summer months, but there were still projects that we wanted to address. I also said that I would give updates as the year continued. This entry into the Primary Blog will be the first update.

The new play area between Block 3 and the astro turf will have a change coming soon. There are two pieces of equipment that will be added to the playground by the end of October. Currently these new additions are on a boat making their way towards Chatsworth Orchard Campus from Germany. Once the equipment arrives, it will take only a weekend to install.

This past week there were a plethora of resource that arrived for our classrooms. Furniture and other organizational pieces have been delivered to the teachers to help ensure that our classrooms remain clear to maintain a learning environment that is conducive to student learning. As a school, we have made it a goal to be mindful of our classes and their setup as we believe this has a direct impact on student achievement.

The Discovery Center is also growing. This week we received a full cooker and large refrigerator for the students to begin cooking. We are very excited about this as Food Science is great for our Primary program. Additionally, other materials have been added to the Center, enabling the students to be incredibly creative in their activities.

In the coming weeks we look forward to the remaining Perceptual Motor Program (PMP) equipment to arrive. Once this occurs, parents will be invited in to learn more about the program and eventually help the teachers implement it with our youngest students. This is also another initiative that we are proud to bring to our families.

Today was our first MUFTI, or non-uniform dress day. In an effort to bring more opportunities for students to develop their leadership skills, the money collected will be managed by the Primary Student Council. The council will liaise with various stakeholders in the school, including their peers, to determine how the proceeds will be spent or donated to charity. We hope that allowing them a voice in how their school develops will give them more ownership of the school.

We have also begin a new CCA that focuses on environmental issues that happen here in Singapore and globally. This eco group, we hope, will help raise awareness in the Primary School about the importance of taking care of our environment. The best place to start is to begin to look at our own school and homes.

We now have refurbished our Lost and Found property. Near the canteen you will find 4 labeled bins that will house items that have lost their owners. There are plans in how to deal with those items that are never collected. I hope to share more about this once the details have been finalized.

Although there has been much change occur on our campus and to our program, we strive to improve. We welcome your feedback and support for further improvements across all aspects to our school.

Dr. Michael Berry
Head of Primary

Week 7 of the Primary Weekly Correspondance


  • UN Day (11 Oct)Letter here
  • SeeSaw Parent Info SessionDate: 23 October 2018
    Time: 9am

    More details here
  • Connected Parents special presentation by Lissy PunoDate: 10 October 2018
    Time: 9.30-11.00am
    Venue: Main Hall

    RSVP your seat/s here.
    More details here.

Sunday, 30 September 2018

Approaches to Learning (ATL’s)


Educators (and parents) are charged with preparing students for life after school. For some that means university while others will go different route. No matter which path students decide to follow, there are various skills and attributes that need to be developed within them ensuring they experience success in whatever they decide to do.

The Primary Years Programme (PYP) has identified five skills (Thinking, Social, Self-Management, Research and Communication) and sub-skills that PYP teachers should strive to develop. These skills are referred to as Approaches to Learning (ATL’s). In the PYP publication Making the PYP Happen, it states, “These skills are valuable, not only in the units of inquiry, but also for any teaching and learning that goes on within the classroom, and in life outside the school”. In doing so, students realize that the skills are not “pigeon-holed” to one discipline. In fact, they soon learn that these skills can be transferred to a multitude of situations. The PYP also believes to enhance these skills, they should be taught in a transdisciplinary manner. Although teachers report on the skills in the context of the units of inquiry, it is important to remember that these skills are utilized in all areas of the curriculum. These ATL skills permeate through the three IB programmes, PYP, MYP and DP.

ATL’s are also at the forefront of the teachers planning for teaching and learning. When planning lessons, teachers develop activities that support the development of ATL’s. Daily opportunities are provided at school for students to practice using ATL’s and to reflect on how they are applying them to their learning. Parents can support student use of these skills outside of school by referring to them with their children. As with any tool, the more purposeful, guided opportunities we have to use them, the more skilled we become in its use.



Dr. Michael Berry
Head of Primary

Week 6 of the Primary Weekly Correspondance

Primary Weekly Correspondence
  • JY Fun Run (4 Oct)Letter here.
  • UN Day (11 Oct)Letter here.
  • Parent Cafe - New Learning Spaces in Chatsworth Explore and learn more about our new Kindergarten initiatives: The Perceptual Motor Programme and our Discovery Centre.

    Date: 10 October 2018
    Time: 0900 - 1100
    Venue: Discovery Centre (Room 4D)

    RSVP your seat here.
  • Author VisitAndy Griffiths author visitor at Dulwich College on Oct 15. 200 seats available. Parents must register with this form.

Monday, 24 September 2018

Boaler Parent Night Letter



Over the past few years Chatsworth has invested much effort, time and money in improving how we teach mathematics in the Primary School. In doing so, we have been reviewing the newest research in how students learn best and have aligned that knowledge with the philosophy of how the PYP views mathematics teaching and learning.

One researcher who has influenced me tremendously and who I quoted many times in my own dissertation is Jo Boaler from prestigious Stanford University in the United States. This link will take you to a handout which offers parental advice, tips and strategies in terms of how you can support your child in the area of mathematics learning. There is also a plethora of resources listed for you to take advantage of while working with your child at home.

I also ask that you watch this space for an opportunity for parents to take an online mathematics course (about 16 hours long) headed by Jo Boaler herself. Information about this online class will be shared with you during the Parent Cafe, which is dedicated to mathematics, on November 7.

I wish you all a wonderful and safe weekend.

Dr. Michael Berry 
Head of Primary

Week 5 of the Primary Weekly Correspondance

Week 5 Primary Weekly Correspondence

  • JY Fun Run (4 Oct)
    Letter here.
  • UN Day (11 Oct)
    Letter here.
  • Author Visit
    Andy Griffiths author visitor at Dulwich College on Oct 15. 200 seats available. Parents must register with this form.

Friday, 7 September 2018

Picture Books

A couple of weeks ago I asked the teachers to access my Google Calendar and find a convenient time for me to come in and read to their students. Reading to the children is something that I have always enjoyed doing. I have a reading background as my Master’s degree is that of a Reading Specialist. This time with the students also allows me to connect with them enabling us to “get to know” each other. Because of this shared time, they are more comfortable approaching me when I am out on campus during playtime or when I am in the classrooms.

I have many picture books that I would list as my favorites. I tend to share them with the students when I read. However, I also ask our librarian, Ms. Fong, if she has any new books that I could read to the children to introduce the books to them first hand. I typically enter the classes with a basket of reading. Even the older students love to hear the picture books being read orally.

Children’s book author Terry Pierce, listed and expanded on five reasons she believes picture books benefit young children. The first reason she spoke of was language development. Pierce notes that most picture books contain only about 500 words; many books have fewer. Because there are so few words, the author has to choose the language carefully which is why a hallmark of picture books is that they are crafted with such care. Editor Anne Hoppe writes that with picture books “the writer distills, the illustrator expands”.

Picture books also facilitate brain development in young children. Between the ages of 2 and 7 the brain is making extra neurological connections, trying to establish “patterns, cause-and-effect and sequences”. For those of us that have read picture books, we know that many of them contain familiar patterns (Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See?, by Bill Martin) and rhyming words (The Gruffalo and Stick Man, by Julia Donaldson) which children love. These books help to create new connections is the brain.

Pierce also believes that the physical participation of a child turning a page in a book is important in the child developing a love of reading. Turning the page in the book “sets up an interactive experience between the child and the story”. Many authors build suspense when writing by beginning a sentence on one page and ending it on the next after a page turn. This allows for more cause-and-effect pathways to develop in the brain.

Children want to be part of the reading experience. When children participate in the reading of a book, their attention span can be enhanced. Being engrossed in a book, especially one that has a catchy refrain (Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day, by Judith Viorst), allows for students to wait for their opportunity to join in the storytelling experience by “reading” the refrain along with the teacher.

Finally, picture books are multi-sensory. Brains at this age are developing rapidly. The experiences that we as educators provide (this includes parents as you are your child’s first teacher) allow for development to happen more rapidly by stimulating their children’s senses. When reading a picture book, children are hearing words, seeing shapes (letters/words) on a page, touching or feeling the book (tactile /touch-and-feel books), and smelling the pages as well (scratch-and-sniff books).

There is a disturbing trend in the United States that began just under a decade ago; the sales of picture books are down. The New York Times noted that many parents are skipping picture books and going straight to chapter books.

The reason?

Some parents believe that by going straight to chapter books they will help to “advance their (children’s) reading skills”. Bluntly, Pierce writes that, “It isn’t true. Or smart”. She provides the analogy of a parent not allowing his/her child to crawl and go straight to walking as eventually this would make the child a better runner.

I am sure we would all agree that this would not be in our children’s best interest.

Dr. Michael Berry
Head of Primary

Week 3 of the Primary Weekly Correspondance


  • ECA / CCA
    CCA/ECA Orchard booklet
    CCA Sign up portal

  • Parent Cafe - An Introduction to the PYP
    Join us to discuss what an IB Education looks like at Chatsworth.
    This Parent Café is ideal for families that are new to the PYP. After a short presentation you will be invited into EY and JY classrooms to see the PYP in Action.

    Date: 12 September 2018
    Time: 9:00 - 11:00am
    Venue: Discovery Centre, Room 4D
    RSVP your seat here
  • School Library for Parents
    Parents can borrowed from our school library at Orchard Campus. Please fill out this form and email to Ms. Fong, our librarian, at efong@chatsworth.com.sg
  • September Lunch Menu
  • Junior Years Canteen Wristbands
    Letter here.
    FAQ here.
  • School Library
    The library is closed to students before school. This includes returning or exchanging library books. Students can come to the library from 3:30 to 4:30 to do so.

Friday, 31 August 2018

Parent Orientation

Parent Orientation

It was a pleasure for all the teachers and staff at Chatsworth to welcome the parent community to our annual Parent Orientation meetings. These meetings serve many purposes:
  • It allows the parents and teachers to meet each other face-to-face rather than relying on technology
  • Teachers and parents can share information ensuring that we are all clear in terms of the day-to-day happenings in your child’s class
  • Parents are able to ask questions they may have
  • Parents can view the learning environment
All of these reasons are important for us to begin to create a triangular relationship between school, parents and students.

I received a great amount of feedback from parents after the meetings as we mingled before we went home. What I found is that parents are extremely supportive of the the school and the teachers. It is pleasing to see that we all have the same vision in how we educate the children. Should you want to provide more feedback on the meetings, please feel free to contact me as I would be very interested to learning your thoughts.



Dr. Michael Berry
Head of Primary

Week 2 of the Primary Correspondance

Primary Weekly Correspondance
  • September Lunch Menu
  • Junior Years Canteen Wristbands Letter here. FAQ here.
  • NLB Libraries
    The public libraries are allowing double borrowing until Sept 30. This means 16 print books and 16 ebooks.

  • AFCC - the Asian Festival of Children's
    AFCC - the Asian Festival of Children's Content is from Sept 6-8 if you are interested in children books and publishing.   Singapore is the country of focus this year. More info is here.
  • Chatsworth Parent Group (CPG)
    Welcome back! Please join us Monday, 3 September 2018 at 9:00am in the Discovery Centre (4D, just past the Primary Office) for the first CPG Coffee Morning of the year. There will be a brief introduction to the CPG, a chance to mingle with fellow Chatsworth parents and important information about upcoming events.
    We look forward to seeing you soon!
    The CPG Team
    Please RSVP via: cpg-orc@chatsworth.com.sg.
    What: CPG Coffee Morning
    When: September 3, 2018 (Monday)
               9:00 a.m.
    Where: Room 4D (Discovery Centre)

Friday, 24 August 2018

First Week


The teachers arrived to their first day of school on August 1. Over the next 15 days we worked together to organize classrooms, plan our curriculum, acclimated to our new campus equipment and prepared for the students to return to us. In that last week or so, I heard many teachers mention that the school was too quiet and were ready to greet the students.

We all wanted to see the children’s faces and join in their excitement when they walked up the hill by the main gate as they viewed new playgrounds.

Having the students back at school has been wonderful. As a school that now caters to Primary students and families only, the campus feels more relaxed. We have room to roam the areas that make up Chatsworth - Orchard Campus.

I want to thank the teachers and the leadership team for their effort in readying the school for your children. There was a good amount of blood and sweat (literally) put into cleaning, organizing and moving of equipment and resources. This was all done with the great attitude of “rolling up our sleeves” to do the jobs that we needed to complete.

Additionally, I want to thank Mr. Tyler Sherwood and the Board for their great effort in supporting our ideas as to how we can improve the campus for the students. The endeavor did not come cheaply; however they trusted our vision and continue to do so.

This past Thursday we hosted the Parent Orientation meetings with your Early Years parents. I appreciate the turnout from our parent community for the event. I find having these meetings are a positive way to begin our learning journey together in supporting the students here at school. Next Thursday, August 30th, we will invite our JY families for an information evening. The session will begin in the Main Hall at 6:00pm and end in the classrooms approximately at 7:30pm. We look forward to welcoming you.


Dr. Michael Berry
Head of Primary

Week 1 of the Primary Weekly Correspondance


  • NLB BorrowingIf you have a membership at the public libraries here, you can borrow double the usual number (16 print books/magazines and 16 ebooks) until Sept 30. More info on this link.
  • Library Parent VolunteerThe Library need parent volunteers - if they are native Korean/Japanese speakers, that would be great as we have some Korean/Japanese books that need processing.

    The times would be Mon to Fri
    10 - 11:30
    11:30 - 12:30
    1:30 to 2:30
    2:30 to 3:30

    Interested parents could email me at efong@chatsworth.com.sg.
  • JY Parent Orientation EveningDate: 30th August 2018
    Time: 6-7.30pm
    Venue: Main Hall

    RSVP here.
    More details here.
  • Chatsworth Parent Group (CPG)Welcome back! Please join us Monday, 3 September 2018 at 9:00am in the Discovery Centre (4D, just past the Primary Office) for the first CPG Coffee Morning of the year. There will be a brief introduction to the CPG, a chance to mingle with fellow Chatsworth parents and important information about upcoming events.

    We look forward to seeing you soon!

    The CPG Team

    Please RSVP via: cpg-orc@chatsworth.com.sg.

    What: CPG Coffee Morning
    When: September 3, 2018 (Monday)
              9:00 a.m.
    Where: Room 4D (Discovery Centre)
  • August Lunch Menu

Friday, 8 June 2018

Perspectives from the PYP Coordinator

Perspectives from the PYP Coordinator

As we are getting close to the end of the school year, there is still so much happening. So here is a glimpse into our week with these videos.

This is my last blog entry as a PYP Coordinator. I have so enjoyed working with the teachers and developing curriculum for our students, but I am so excited to be moving more into pastoral care and supporting students making positive choices next year. As I move out of the curriculum role, it is also so exciting to be welcoming Mr. Lucchesi to this role as PYP Coordinator. He has served as the Inquiry Coach for the last two years and has helped so many teachers grow in their practice. We know in this role, he will do an outstanding job and have the time to support teachers more.

Enjoy the videos and have a great weekend

Ms. Riemer
PYP Coordinator

We received thanks yous from K1.


Week 45 of the Primary Weekly Correspondance

  • 2018 Final Report
    Letter here.
  • Bus Transportation for 2018-2019 If your child requires bus transportation in the 2018/19 academic year to either campus, please can you complete the form here. More details here.
  • The Magic TeacakesSanaya Sengupta is our new author in Chatsworth. She is a student in Year 3. If you would like a copy of her book The Magic Teacakes, please send $15 to Ms Gupta and collect it on Monday or Tuesday
  • Library From 19 May to 30 September 2018, you can borrow up to 32 books (16 ebooks and 16 print books) from the public libraries. More info here.
  • End of Year (2017-2018) Athletics Report - Chatsworth Orchard Letter here.
  • Year 6 to MYP: Summer Reading

Friday, 1 June 2018

Cinderella & Rockafella

Cinderella & Rockafella 

Last weekend 73 Chatsworth students representing the Primary and Middle school graced the stage as they presented the musical Cinderella & Rockerfella. There were two performances that were held at the Lee Foundation Theatre.

In the IB publication, The Arts scope and sequence, it states very clearly the importance the IB places on student participation in drama.

Drama explores how we express ourselves physically and vocally. In creating, students should explore the use of facial expressions, gestures, movement, posture and vocal techniques to convey emotional or cultural meaning to both characters and stories. It is important that students are exposed to a variety of dramatic forms including creative movement, impersonation, improvisation, mask work, mime, musical, role play, pantomime, puppetry, re-enactment, scripted drama, and skit. In responding, students should experience a wide variety of scripts and stories from different times, cultures and places and, where possible, access live theatre performances and presentations. Students should have opportunities to present their creative work to an audience, to witness their peers in performance and through this become critically aware audience members

The students also exhibited many of the attributes of the IB Learner Profile. After the first performance I addressed the audience. During that talk, I mentioned that the students who were on stage were incredibly confident during the production. To be a young student (some of our actors were 8 years old), you must be a risk taker to present on a stage to parents and other adults in the audience. The students, over the course of the semester, showed that the had integrity and were principled as they consistently took part in the many rehearsals after school and on weekends.

I want to thank the performers for their hard work in preparing for the production and their performances last Friday and Saturday evening.

In addition, I want to thank the parent community for supporting the arts and your children. As a parent myself, I understand how my children’s social and work life has a direct impact on mine. However, we know that supporting our children in endeavors such as the production is simply the correct path to take.

I also want to thank our teachers and staff who took on this huge initiative. There are two special “thank you’s” that need to be shared. Ms. Sara Lynn Burrough and Ms. Serrin Smyth spearheaded the charge with Cinderella & Rockerfella. Sadly, they both will be leaving us at the end of this year. The school acknowledges their work over the years they have been part of the Chatsworth Family.

Should you want to view the shows online, here are the links for act 1 and act 2.

Enjoy the show!


Act 1: https://youtu.be/mi8TZW8_ulw
Act 2: https://youtu.be/If5uhuN97AQ


Dr. Michael Berry
Head of Primary

Week 44 of the Primary Weekly Correspondance

  • House Assemblies
    Please have your child in their House T-Shirt for the following dates.
    8th June: Final EY & JY House Event
  • Orchard New Development Brochure
    More details here.
  • Revamp of the Chatsworth Uniform
    More details here.
  • Library
    - Reading Lists from NLB (click on left for different ages)
    - PRI Library Book Return Letter
    - SEC Library Book Return Letter
    - Summer Slide
    What happens when children don't read during the summer

    - Survey
    Do Parents want a mini-session on information literacy during the CPG Coffee Mornings. Here is a sample of what we done in the past. New suggestions are welcomed

Friday, 25 May 2018

Thoughts from the Chatsworth Primary Hallway

The purpose of Conferences within the Primary Years Programme (PYP) is for information to be shared between various stakeholders within the school, namely the teacher, parents and student. 

This past week Chatsworth Primary hosted their Student-led conferences. These conferences, as noted in the IB publication, “Making the PYP Happen” are described as:

Student-led conferences involve the student and the parent. The students are responsible for leading the conference, and also take responsibility for their learning by sharing the process with their parents. It may involve students demonstrating their understanding through a variety of different learning situations. There may be several conferences taking place simultaneously.

The parent turnout was strong. It is pleasing to see the parent community invested in what their child is learning at school as well as how they are learning. As stated in previous blog posts, our students are learning in a much different manner that we did (at least me) when I was in school. It was also great to view the students excited, articulate and confident in presenting their learning to their parents.

I also participated in the student-led conference as a parent as my daughter Stella, in year four, took me around to share the various activities. She beat me in a mathematics dice game (handedly I might add), we made a clay model together and wrote poems. This was followed by us working on a reflection, again together, (she insisted we take a selfie to add to her work) that she uploaded to her digital portfolio.

It is my hope that all of the parents had a wonderful experience with their child as I did.

I would like to thank all the parents who came; your presence makes a huge difference in the triangular relationship between teacher, student and parent we promote here at Chatsworth. I would also like to thank the teachers for their effort in organizing for the day. As you can imagine, the preparation for the conferences takes much time and effort.


Dr. Michael Berry
Head of Primary

Week 43 of the Primary Weekly Correspondance


  • House Assemblies
    Please have your child in their House T-Shirt for the following dates.
    1st June: EY & JY House Captain Voting
    8th June: Final EY & JY House Event
  • Orchard New Development Brochure
    More details here.
  • Revamp of the Chatsworth Uniform
    More details here.
  • ECA/CCA
    Please note that our ECA/CCA Session 2 has ended. There are no ECA/CCA from 29 May onwards.

Friday, 18 May 2018

Thought from the Chatsworth Primary Hallway

We are extremely excited to share with the parent community just a few of the new initiatives that we will implement in the 2018-2019 academic school year.

As you know, when the Chatsworth Orchard opens in August 2018, we will be a Primary (K1-Yr 6) campus. Although we value what a K-Yr 13 school can bring to all students, we are looking forward to spreading out to better support the Primary children.

In doing so, we have planned to create a purpose built school for students ages 3-11. Here you will find a flyer developed by the marketing department here at Chatsworth. In the brief, we outline the new play spaces that will be ready for the students to utilize on the first day of school on August 16. I will not go into the details of the features in each play space here as you can read about them in the attachment.

We also have planned for new additions to our curriculum. As a PYP school, we value holistic education and our purpose is to develop the whole child. With these new exciting initiatives to our curriculum we are continuing to make great strides in meeting those objectives.

I want to thank Mr. Sherwood, Head of Schools, and the Board at Chatsworth for supporting the Primary School in this endeavor.


Warm Regards,

Dr. Michael Berry
Head of Primary

Week 42 of the Primary Weekly Correspondance


  • Parent Survey on Reporting at Chatsworth International School, Orchard Campus
    We would like to collect your thoughts and opinions on our current reporting practices.
    Click here for the survey
  • Student Led Conference (SLC)
    Please note that there is no regular class on this day as students will be attending their individual conference with their parents as scheduled.
    Booking link here with code 6664j
    SLC letter here.
  • House Assemblies
    Please have your child in their House T-Shirt for the following dates.
    25th May: EY & JY Class House Event
    1st June: EY & JY House Captain Voting
    8th June: Final EY & JY House Event
  • Revamp of the Chatsworth Uniform
    More details here.
  • Y5 Puberty Class (22 May)
    Please note that the class is for both Y5 boys and girls.
    More details on the revised letter here.
  • School Musical: Cinderella and Rockerfella
    Date: 25 & 26 May 2018
    Venue: Lee Foundation Theatre
    Tickets now on sale at the School Reception
    More details here.

Friday, 11 May 2018

Week 41 Happenings

11 May 2018


What an exciting week in the Primary School!

The Year Six Exhibition was a huge success and we are so proud of the energy, enthusiasm, and presentations by all of our students. On Tuesday evening teachers, parents and family members joined us on campus to kick off the two and half day event. Today the Y6 students reflected on their experiences of the last nine weeks and celebrated with a pizza party and dodgeball games, a great way to end this very special journey in the lives of our oldest primary students.

While the Year Six classes were celebrating so were our youngest students, the Kindergarten classes. The K classes honored their mothers today with flowers, poetry, a spa day, treats and lots of love. In honor of mother’s day in May, the Kindy students wanted their mothers to know how much they appreciate them.

This afternoon, we had a very exciting interactive assembly from our Single Subject teachers and their students. From making poems to drumming to graffiti art to dancing and singing - fun was had by all!

Check out the videos and photos of this special week in the Primary School.


Kim Riemer

Assistant Head of Primary

Exhibition Creative Reflection

Exhibition 2018




Happy
Mother's
Day!