Message from the School Director
There was a celebratory mood at school this month with students and staff dressed in national costumes, colours and sports outfits for International Day. What a whirlwind introduction to our wonderfully multicultural world!
Dear parents and children,
Our International Day event at the beginning of March was a delightful opportunity to broaden the children’s horizons and understanding of the world. It brought the large number of nationalities we have at school together and increased the children’s intercultural awareness. Students presented items of interest from their country of origin and taught each other about their own heritage during the special International Day show and tell. Parents put a lot of work into preparing the children’s outfits and generously provided tasty native foods from a wide range of countries. Our parents’ assembly gave the students a chance to appear in their national dress and showcase their singing skills. Whole school events of this kind allow for the children to learn more about their friends’ culture, food, music and language, while forming a greater understanding of their own place in the wider community.
We had an eventful Open Day in March and were busy interviewing students for entry to Mills for the 2019-2020 academic year. We’ve also seen an increasing number of students join us during the current academic year and are pleased with the continued growth in our school community.
We were delighted to meet with new parents at The Standard International School Festival recently and introduce our outstanding school to them.
With Spring fast approaching, don’t be surprised to see rainbows, flowers, caterpillars, butterflies, birds, and eggs appearing around school soon in the run-up to our Easter Party on 12 April!
Your child’s school portfolio will be sent home during the Easter holidays in April so that you can see their efforts and achievements from Term 2. Please return the complete portfolio after the holidays, so that we can continue to update these important records.
Please remember that my door is always open and I am happy to meet with you at any time to discuss your child’s experiences and learning at school.
Please note that our annual School Photo Day will be on Thursday, 11 April. It is compulsory that students wear summer uniform on this day, so please confirm your summer uniform orders, if you have not done so already. Students must wear white socks (with no patterns). No leggings or stockings are allowed. All students must wear plain black shoes during the photo shoot.
Summer Camps – Plan ahead to prevent summer learning loss, and enrol in our comprehensive range of camps which run from 2 July to 23 August. Click here for information: http://www.millsinternational.edu.hk/summer-camps/
Playgroup children had lots of fun exploring their Springtime theme this month. They’ve enjoyed discovering gardens, had a go at planting flowers, and learnt to recognise the different colours of flowers.
They’ve also been learning to identify different animals and kept busy making artworks of cute chicks, rabbits and other springtime creatures.
Getting messy and creative with paints and glue, and learning to handle brushes are engaging activities that help develop fine motor skills as the children play.
There was also plenty of time for the children to explore the sensory bins by playing in the sand and putting their hands in water to grab the balloons. Sensory play is an important time for tactile exploration for young learners, allowing them opportunities to discover and manipulate materials and play-based tools.
Mr Roy and Ms Dipika
Here in Pre-Nursery, the children have been discovering what they’re capable of doing all by themselves during our theme Look What I Can Do! They began by fine-tuning their hand-eye coordination and small hand muscles by practicing fine motor skills activities.
They then spent time exercising their bodies and focusing on gross motor skills, during running, jumping, and climbing games.
The children have been busy developing important self-care skills by learning to wash and dry the baby dolls. They’re also becoming more independent by practising washing hands properly, changing their own shoes, and putting on as well as taking off their coats and cardigans. These practical activities help the children discover how capable they are, and give them a real sense of empowerment and a ‘can-do’ attitude!
Let’s continue to be patient with the Pre-Nursery children and allow them opportunities each day to practise and develop their self-help skills.
Ms Claire, Ms Felicity, Ms Jasmine and Ms Wanna
We’ve had a fun month in K1 exploring the topic Super Seasons. Students began by learning about the four seasons and discovering how leaves change colour. Each season was explored through storytelling, songs, art, movement, sensory and table top activities. We also incorporated role play into our learning and the students really enjoyed pretending to be at a pumpkin patch, picking pumpkins and raking dried leaves.
Making ice lollies was one of this month’s highlights for the students. They poured juice into moulds and placed them in the freezer to observe how ice is formed. They couldn’t wait to see how the juice had turned to ice the next day!
We also had a class picnic with lots of conversation around the picnic blanket as the children enjoyed their snacks. What a fun and relaxing way to enhance communication and language skills.
Lots of seasonal artworks were created by K1 this month. Students made beautiful suncatchers for spring, decorative flipflops for summer, and practised their cutting skills as they cut along dotted lines to create branches for autumn trees.
Now that the sunny days are here, we took the opportunity to go outdoors to observe the flowers that have blossomed in the park. The children had so much fun examining the different flowers and also enjoyed a butterfly fluttering around.
Ms Urwashi and Ms Rebecca
The Magic of Science was the theme for March. Food science was first explored, with the children investigating apple oxidation and experimenting with milk, vinegar, salt, water and lemon juice to see which would prevent a slice of apple from turning brown.
They painted with coffee and learned that a solid/powder can turn to a liquid if you add energy in the form of warm water. The coffee paintings proved particularly stimulating as they gave the art room a real coffee shop aroma!
Colour science came next, with students exploring colour theory and discovering how primary colours (blue, yellow and red) mix to create secondary colours (green, orange and purple). Magical colour wheels were painted and the children had so much fun spinning their wheels and watching the six colours mix optically to create white!
Using a glass dish of water and a mirror, the magic of a rainbow was unveiled. Students learnt that white light can be broken down into its many colours when directed through water. The resulting rainbow on the classroom wall produced gasps of amazement.
The third science topic was magnets. Students learned that a magnet has a north pole and a south pole. We then did a fun experiment where they had to test out different materials to check if they were magnetic or not and record their findings on a tasksheet. Then during art time the students made interactive magnetic racers.
Our fourth and final science topic was water. Students learnt about the different states of matter (solid, liquid and gas) and related this to the weather, specifically the formation of clouds, which was particularily amazing for some students as they had been convinced that clouds are made of cotton candy! The children completed an experiment to change liquid water to solid ice by freezing, then solid ice to liquid water again using heat. Upon further heating, the liquid water then slowly started rising into the air as steam. This gave the students a comprehensive idea of the processes of freezing, melting and evaporating using different temperatures.
Notable progress has been made by students during show and tell, with them conducting their presentations using full sentences, appropriate introductions, questions and answers. Numeracy this month has been focused on the introduction to even numbers, counting in 2’s and practicing addition and subtraction sums.
The friendly skeleton in the K3 classroom was the central point of learning during the first week of our Amazing Anatomy theme, as students identified the different parts of the human body. They continued learning about the wonders of the human body by exploring the characteristics and differences between red and white blood cells. Finally they put on their descriptive hats when learning about the five senses. The class identified the five senses that exist and were encouraged to use strong adjectives to define a sense that they have experienced in the past.
Since the students have been exploring the subject of anatomy, it was the perfect opportunity to combine the topic with MindUP activities. We reviewed three parts of the brain (amygdala, hippocampus and the prefrontal cortex) and their functions. Students then used clay to sculpt small lifelike models of the brain, which were painted and labelled to identify each area. The students must be applauded for their fantastic efforts to create convincingly realistic representations of the human brain.
Apart from a strong focus on mathematics and literacy this month, the students got some time out of school to attend the History Museum. The excursion was a great success and allowed students an opportunity to explore major historical events, as well as taking a closer look at the traditions and history of local culture in Hong Kong.
We’ve also welcome Teacher Eric back to Mills and the students have been thoroughly enjoying their weekly ukulele lessons.
The K3 class continues to grow in confidence and develop in all areas of school life.
Pre-Nursery students have been busy exploring the topic Look What I Can Do! They have been developing their self-help skills by handing in their folder each morning, placing their water bottle in the box, and tidying up their toys. They’ve learnt the song I Am Growing Up and understand the importance of taking responsibility for their personal belongings. Through games they have learnt to be patient, to line up, and to wait for their turn. What a great month we’ve had, witnessing the children growing and becoming more independent young learners.
Fan Laoshi (Ms Selina) and Huang Laoshi (Ms Tracy)
K1 students have been learning about seasonal changes through singing, storytelling, art activities, and games for their Super Seasons topic. They’ve learnt that each season has its typical weather conditions, and are able to say sentences associated with the four seasons such as “Flowers bloom in early spring”, “Summer is hot. Let’s eat an ice lolly”, “Leaves turn yellow in autumn”, and “Winter is cold”. It’s great to see them participating well in all of the activities and quickly learning the characteristics of the four seasons.
Chen Laoshi (Ms May)
K2 students have had a fun month investigating the topic The Magic of Science. They explored food science and experimented with what could be used to prevent oxidation, learned about primary colours and how to mix new colours, investigated magnetic forces, and studied the nature of water. The children showed enthusiasm when carrying out all of these experiments.
Fan Laoshi (Ms Selina)
K3 children focused on the topic Amazing Anatomy during March. They began by observing their appearance and feeling their pulse. They were so curious about human biology that they brought theme-based books and models to school to share with their classmates. Through reading, game activities, and watching videos the children have learnt about their five senses. They can now name body organs and various bones in the human skeleton. We also had fun during PE lessons playing the Touch My Body game.
Huang Laoshi (Ms Tracy)