Elementary School Weekly Update 25 January 2019
Posted 25-01-2019 03:27PM

Dear Parents,

Yesterday we had over 40 parents attend John Gaston's parent education session on Child Protection. Thanks to all those who came. We have also heard positive feedback regarding the viewing of the movie Angst that screened twice this week. We have two more parent education sessions coming up in February, so we hope you can make it to both!!

Many more parents are using the ES Calendar feature on their phones. This allows you to see all the relevant ES events that are planned. Occasionally we need to make changes to events, and these will show up directly in the online calendar.

To subscribe to the ES calendar, please use the link found on the ES Portal.

Good luck to our Grade 4 and Grade 3 students who head off on camp adventures next week. We know you will have a blast!!

Lost Property

We have an extensive amount of lost property out on display. Unfortunately, out of the 121 items in our lost property box, only 14 of these had student names written on them. Although we will endeavour to reunite named items with students, it makes our job extremely challenging when things are not named. We will continue to remind students about looking after their belongings and also bring them through to take a look over the coming week, but please help by reminding your child to look after their things at school and please name ALL items your child brings to school. This includes lunch boxes, containers, water bottles and hats.

House System

We are excited to announce that the elementary school will be joining our Middle School in having the same house system. The purpose of developing a house system is to build community across grade levels and divisions (we will collaborate with Middle School where possible.)  We hope to involve children in a range of fun activities and events: these might include games, service activities, war-cries, sports, creative experiences etc.  

Students and teachers have already been assigned into houses.  The way that we allocated children into houses was based on siblings and parents who are already in houses in the Middle School, everyone else was distributed evenly into houses to ensure even numbers. Our house names and colours are as follows:

Indlovu (elephants)

Ubhejane (rhinos)

Ingonyama (lions)

Ingwe (leopards)

It gets even better...on February 14th every child in the ES will be receiving their very own house T-shirt!  We will write each child's name on their shirt prior to them being given out. We ask that parents and students look after their T-shirts carefully, as the first shirt will be given to children free of charge, however replacement shirts will come at the cost of R50.  We can't wait to see our elementary school all decked out in their colourful T-shirts in February 14th!

Valentine's Day- Woodrock Animal Rescue: Action Needed!!

Thanks to our fabulous Parent Association, the elementary school will be lucky to welcome some of our favourite dogs from Woodrock Animal Rescue. Students will have the chance to interact with the dogs, and learn more about how Woodrock helps care for animals in need. We are also looking to support Woodrock by raising as many items as possible to donate. We would appreciate any of the items below, and these can be brought to school and left in a donation box in the ES Office. All items will be given to Woodrock on Valentine's Day by our Grade 2 students. Thanks to Claire Hauxwell, our elementary school PA Coordinator, for helping to arrange this event.

•            Bin Bags

•            Milbemax dewormers for cats and dogs

•            Roll dustbins with lids/heavy duty mops/buckets/dishpans

•            Dish Liquid/Handy Andy

•            Cat Litter

•            Cat Sachets/ Tuna/ Pilchards

•            Cat Toys/ Scratching Posts/ Cocoons

•            Puppy Pellets/kibbles

•            Dog/Puppy Toys

•            Puppy Food

•            Wet Wipes/Cotton Wool/Swabs

•            Coffee/Tea/Milk/Sugar for the staff

•            Puppy Blankets

•            Royal Canine Kitten Milk

•            Chicken Feed/Rabbit Feed

•            Kitten sachets

•            Can Openers

•            Felisine/Nutristem/Canigest/Protexin - (health nutrients available from vets)

Math in Action: Differentiation and Problem Solving

Math Parent Education Session: Monday, February 11th 2019

We are excited to offer a 'live labsite' experience for parents, with the opportunity to come and watch our students in action in the classrooms. This parent education session will be an opportunity for parents to observe math being taught in classrooms, where they can observe various math strategies in action, across different age groups. We will also offer various information sessions to provide an understanding of 'why' we teach math the way we do. Parents will have the choice of which sessions they would like to attend, during different times throughout. The morning will conclude with a 'panel' discussion and Q&A, involving the team of teachers who led the labsites and information sessions. This will be an opportunity for parents to ask questions and share their observations, thinking and wonderings.


K-Grade 1

Grade 2-3

Grade 4-5


ES Library

Welcome from Ben and Jill

Purpose of the morning and how it will run

Transition to Session 1

Session 1

8:00- 8:25


Designated classrooms

Information Session

Strategies versus rote memorisation

The importance of developing knowledge and fluency through counting and basic facts

G3 Labsite

Strategy group using

subtraction strategies focussed on grouping and regrouping


G4 Labsite

Problem solving strategies

Student collaboration and communication based on Math Practices

Transition to Session 2

8:30- 8:55


Designated classrooms

G1 Labsite

Strategy Group

Moving towards imaging. Using manipulatives and other tools to demonstrate understanding.

Information Session

Unpacking the developmental progression of subtraction

G4 Labsite

Strategy groups

Classroom routines

Differentiation linked to planning

Transition to Session 3

9:00- 9:25


Designated classrooms

G1 Labsite

Problem solving. Interpreting a problem and situation, recording our thinking and using multiple problem-solving strategies.

G2 Labsite

Understanding what differentiation looks like through student choice through problem-solving

Information Session

Concrete through to the abstract. The importance of constructing understanding.

Transition to Session 4


Question and Answer






























Writing Consultant Matt Glover: Parent Workshop: Thursday, February 21st 2:15- 3:45pm ES Library

Understanding the development of composition and word making in writing

"Young children are capable of incredible thinking, which can be seen in their writing when they view themselves as writers and when adults honor their approximations of writing.  In this workshop, parents will gain an understanding of key beliefs about young writers as well as specific strategies to support their child's writing development through both composition and word making. This will be an engaging session where Matt will share examples of student writing and how writing develops across various stages."

Matt Glover is a literacy consultant and published author, who works extensively in schools throughout the US and internationally. During the week of February 18th, Matt will be working with all elementary teachers on writing development and best practices in teaching writing to elementary age children. This is the third time Matt has visited our school, and we are thrilled that he will once again be presenting to parents about writing development and how to support growth in writing at home. We encourage all parents to attend Matt's presentation as he is a highly engaging and informative speaker.

Mother Language Day: Calling All Language Speaking Parents! February 21st, 2019

Time flies and International Mother Language Day is almost here again.  Last year was very special as 13 languages were represented.  Parents, you were awesome last year in your lessons, and we are hoping that we have even more languages represented this year!  After all, at any given moment, our school has between 85 and 95 languages spoken by our students. Even if you don't speak a second language, one group taught idioms and different ways to say things in English. So please, come and participate!

The format this year will be very similar to last year but will start later in the school day.  Parents and/or community members will lead 6 twenty-minute sessions with 5-minute intervals (if you can't be here to do all 6 lessons, don't worry, we will work around the times you can be present).  Even if your child is not in the ES, come and represent a language that is dear to you.  Lessons can include focusing on phrases about the language, pronunciation, symbols or alphabets, or whatever your heart desires. 

This year, the K-2 students will come with their teachers as a group and the grade 3-5 students get to choose individually which language sessions they want to attend to make it more personalized.  Linguistic awareness is a focus of our language department so showing our students how languages differ can really go a long way.

Lessons will take place on February 21 between 10:35 and 11:45 and from 12:45 to 1:55 with a one-hour break for lunch.  There is also a community language gathering that will take place at the end of the day at 2:00 p.m, however parents are encouraged to attend the parent education workshop being offered by Matt Glover at 2:15pm. If you wish to lead or be part of a language group, please contact Adam Meier ameier@aisj-jhb.com. The deadline to sign up for a language is February 7. Please see the schedule below:

10.35 - 10.55

11.00 - 11.20

11.25 - 11.45

PreK and Gr3-5 students visit International rooms

3-5 – possible individual student sign ups

*10.30 - 11.10: Upper specialists will supervise Gr 5 so teachers have their planning

ES Lunch and Recess

*Lunch will be provided for parent volunteers

12.45 - 1.05

1.10 - 1.30

1.35 - 1.55

KG - Gr2 students visit International rooms

K-2 – class sign ups

*Lower specialists will take KG students so teachers have their planning time

2.00 - 2.40

Community Gathering with some entertainment/activities



Outside between Grade 5 and Grade 2 rooms



Story teller

Board Summary: AISJ Board of Directors Meeting

Pretoria, Monday, January 21, 2018

The first Board meeting of 2019 was held at the Pretoria Campus.  Prior to the meeting, the Board hosted a "Meet the Board" event, providing an opportunity for AISJ community members to meet with Board Directors and discuss the work and responsibilities of the Board.  Attendees also took part in a tour of the Pretoria Multipurpose Centre to see progress to date on this exciting project. Board approval was given for the Board Code of Conduct, which can be found on the Board Portal under resources. The Board was updated on faculty recruitment and other operational matters, as well as on progress made towards the three Board goals. The Board reviewed the Senior Leadership Succession and Talent plan, presented by the School Director. Board elections will be held this year in February/March to fill the two upcoming open elected positions to serve on the Board for a three-year term from 1 June 2019.  The Community will shortly be receiving a communication about the elections from the Board.

Parent Tour of Riversands Incubation Hub

Important Elementary Events




Jan 30- Feb 1

Grade 4 Camp



Jan 31- Feb 1

Grade 3 Camp



Feb 5- Feb 8

Grade 5 Camp


Lapalala Wilderness Camp

Thur, Feb 14

Valentine's Celebration

Woodrock Animal Shelter Visit

House Launch

Thur, Feb 21

International Mother Language Day


10:30am- 2pm in ES

Parent Education Workshop with internationally renowned writing consultant Matt Glover


2:15pm- 3:30pm in ES Library

(Child Care will be provided from 1pm for PK students and until 3:30pm for those not involved in CCA's)

Fri, Feb 15

Early Release


@ 1:30pm

Mon, Feb 18

Professional Development Day for teachers



Tues, Feb 19

Season 3 Co-Curricular Activities begin



Thur, Feb 28

ES Assembly


AISJ Theatre @ 2:00pm


Ben Hart

ES Principal


Together we dare to imagine, inspire to succeed and courageously make a difference.

Together we dare to imagine, inspire to succeed and courageously make a difference.

Together we dare to imagine, inspire to succeed and courageously make a difference.

Together we dare to imagine, inspire to succeed and courageously make a difference.

Together we dare to imagine, inspire to succeed and courageously make a difference.

Together we dare to imagine, inspire to succeed and courageously make a difference.

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