School Newsletter 04.09.2015

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Newsletter 04.09.2015

Friday, September 4, 2015

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Dates for your diary

Whole School


7th September 3.30pm  Managebac training for new secondary parents in room P16 (main building)
4.10pm  D2 parents presentation in theatre
4.10pm M1–D1 Meet the advisor in advisory rooms
9th September  Primary (EC1 – P2) Meet the teacher
10th September Primary (P3- P6) Meet the teacher
11th SeptemberP3 Unit trip
11th – 13th SeptemberM4 – D1 Wakeboard trip
14th September      School Photographs week
15th September9 am – First PTA meeting (everybody welcome)
15th September3.40 pm – Activities Fair
17th and 18th SeptemberM1 – D1 Bonding Trips
22nd September   9am -M5 parents meet Personal Project coordinator
23rd September10am -12pm           P1 & P2 Swimming Gala
24th September10am – 12pm          P3 & P4 Swimming Gala
25th September 10am – 12.30pm      P5 & P6 Swimming Gala
25th September    TBC – Back to school party


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Whole School News


From the Head of Teaching and Learning

Dear Parents and Guardians,

It was a great delight to welcome you back to school on Tuesday morning.  Thank you for being so prompt.  The students looked very smart as they arrived with bundles of excitement, tales of their summer holidays and huge smiles.

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On Monday we held a very successful New Parent and Student induction day.  I would like to thank the Parent Ambassadors and existing students for taking the time to meet our new families, answer questions and settle nerves.

We began the year with a whole school assembly, which was a lovely moment for us all to connect as a community for the first time.  With the help of Mr. Wickersham we created the very first human drum machine involving approximately 700 people!  It was a lovely opportunity to discuss the way we work as a community.

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In my welcome letter I promised to introduce the new staff members to you, so here is the new team:

Charles Debenham – Head of Boarding
Kelly Lewis-Cole – School Psychologist
Sue Davies – Leader of Learning for Learning Support
Ali Gibson – Leader of Learning for PE
Leanne Jordan – Maths Teacher
Kishan Gohil – Assistant Psychologist and Boarding Supervisor
Amber Wilson – Assistant Psychologist and Boarding Supervisor
Jane Cameron – Learning Support Assistant and Teaching Assistant in Primary
Gema Tocón – Primary Teaching Assistant
Yolaine Jones – Learning Support Coordinator in Primary

I have asked each of them to tell you a little about themselves.  In addition we have taken a photo so you can recognise them as you walk around school.

I would like to remind you that our social media team will regularly be updating Facebook and twitter.  Please login to both to keep up to date with pictures, events and information from around the school.

I wish you a restful and relaxing weekend.

Best wishes

Jak Kearney

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A little bit about me

Alastair Gibson

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I am a huge sports fan with interests in Swimming, Athletics, Football, Rugby & Triathlons! I have been teaching P.E. for 12 years working in South Africa, USA, England, & Spain. I believe that health and physical fitness are the crucial components in having an enjoyable sports career and enjoy working with young people to maximise their potential. I have completed 3 full marathons, (despite not being exactly built for the sport!). I am hoping to start a ´running club´ @ SIS so watch this space!

Leanne Jordan

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I am a Mathematics graduate with a Masters in Education. I have been teaching Mathematics in the UK for 3 years and am very excited to be here in Sotogrande. I have travelled throughout Europe and Australia, and have had a fabulous opportunity to volunteer in an orphanage in Ethiopia. I enjoy meeting new people and experiencing new cultures and am looking forward to enthusing our students with mathematics.

Kishan Gohil

image picI have a great deal of passion in playing badminton, tennis, and Super Mario! However, my primary passion is in Psychology where I have recently completed a postgraduate psychology qualification in the United Kingdom. As a result, this passion has facilitated a career move to Spain, where I will be working as an Assistant Psychologist for Sotogrande International School (SIS). It is with this that I have a great deal of excitement, anticipation, and energy in helping the students here maximize their academic and career potential.

Amber Wilson

image picI am a Masters in Child and Adolescent Psychology graduate and will be a boarding supervisor and assistant psychologist at the school. I did my bachelor degree in New Zealand, where my family emigrated from Bedfordshire in 2006 and I completed my Masters in Holland. I love to travel and have also worked in kindergartens in Germany. Psychology is a huge passion but I have lots of others as well including photography, animation, music, plus anything else arty. I feel at home in an International environment and love the ethos of the school. I feel so excited to dive in, get to know the students, and be active in clubs and activities!

Kelly Lewis-Cole

image picI am a chartered Clinical Psychologist and have been working and studying in the field of Psychology for more than twenty years.  My areas of specialism include neuropsychological assessment, the enhancement of attention and higher level thinking skills and the applications of neuropsychology to mainstream education.  I am passionate about education and am firmly committed to helping young people to develop the highest possible level of self-awareness so that they can take ownership of their own learning journeys.  I have lived in Spain for eleven years and speak fluent Spanish. I have four beautiful children and am a keen rock climber.

Sue Davies

image picHello – My name is Sue Davies, I have recently moved to Sotogrande from Worcestershire in the UK to join the SIS Team and I couldn’t be more delighted.  I have known the school for many years and seen it go from strength to strength.   I love the outdoor life and when I’m not working you are most likely to find me at Tarifa.

SIS has a strong additional learning support team and I am really looking forward to leading that team.  I have worked in the UK for over twenty years in the area of learning support, from Primary to Higher Education; during that time I have learnt a great deal from the young people I have worked with.  I am looking forward to sharing that experience with my students here at SIS and helping them to reach their goals.
I would encourage you to come and discuss any concerns that you may have regarding additional learning support needs.  Our team is here to support you!Charles Debenhamimage picHaving completed five very enjoyable years at St John’s College School, Cambridge, I am extremely excited about moving back into the International Sector in which I have had previous experience of studying and working in: Australia, Finland, South Korea and Spain. Over the summer holidays, I moved into the Boarding House on the San Roque Campus with my Spanish wife, Elisa, and our two young daughters.  We have been lucky to have received a wonderfully warm welcome from the Sotogrande community and we look forward to reciprocating this warmth and enthusiasm to all of the Boarders within our care.Yolaine Jones

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My name is Yolaine (pronounced Yo- Len!).  Some of you may know me as a mother of four children at SIS!  We have lived in Spain for five years and have been at the school for two.  I fundamentally believe in the IB and SIS’ IB track record was the main reason we moved to Sotogrande.  I have a Psychology degree and I am a UK qualified Chartered Educational Psychologist and Primary teacher. Having worked in the UK for a number of years in both roles, I am excited to be taking on the responsibility of Learning Support Coordinator within the Primary department.  Last year I supported a child in P5, but I am excited to continue my educational career at SIS in this new role.  I attempt to speak Spanish, French and German, having a French mother and having lived in Switzerland for much of my education.  I am also passionate about travelling, needing very little persuasion to go anywhere!

Gema Tocón

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My name is Gemma Tocón. I have a Spanish Literature and Language Degree and am currently finishing the Primary Teaching Degree. I have been working as a Spanish teacher since 2008. Last year I worked as a maternity cover teacher at SIS in the Spanish Department. My passion is teaching and child psychology. This year I am working as a Spanish assistant in the EC1 and EC 2 teams and am very excited about this new challenge.

Jane Cameron

image picI am a qualified primary teacher and have worked in a range of roles in the school previously, mostly within Primary and Learning Support but also in Boarding. I have loved watching my children go through the school from six years old to sixteen and making the very most of the exciting opportunities offered them, ensuring they are caring, passionate and well-rounded. The school has also allowed me to follow some of my passions including gardening, and travel. Being part of the team leading the 2014 trip Uganda, which included my whole family, must be one of the highlights! Last year in the UK I worked with children with Severe and Multiple learning difficulties and I am currently extending my qualification in Dyslexia Support. I am very happy to be returning to work at the school, to support students as they move through the Primary Years Programme, working as part of the Learning Support Team.
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Activities Programme 2015/2016

Details of the Activities Programme will be sent out to all parents on September 11th.

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We are offering the opportunity to all parents to run an extracurricular activity in the school. Let’s become even stronger as a Learning Community! If you are interested, please tell us more about your ideas via

Activities Fair

Our annual Activities Fair will take place on Tuesday 15th September at 3.40 pm. During this event, you/ your children will be able to find out more about the activities on offer this year, meet all the activity leaders and register for preferred choices.
Most activities are free or incur only a small fee, and all activities will start week beginning Monday 21st of September.

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We look forward to seeing you there!

Eugenia del Águila 
Primary PE Coordinator
Student Teacher Coordinator
Activities Coordinator

Swimming Club

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Primary School News

Message from Emma Butler, Head of Primary

What a fantastic start to the new school year. It was wonderful to see all our new students settle in and make friends so quickly. It was equally as wonderful welcoming back all the returning students. All the Primary Team and myself are excited and ready for another fantastic year ahead.

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P5 Spanish activity

P5 students made their own paper hats, on which they wrote about their hobbies and other details that they would like to share with their peers. This activity was completed outdoors, moving around and asking and answering questions to each other about the information shown on their hats. In a dynamic way, the group was learning to relate, communicate and practise the Spanish language.

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Secondary School News

Managebac session for new parents

On Monday we will be holding a session for all new secondary parents. The focus of this session is to introduce and show parents how to access and use Managebac (our learning platform).

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Audience: Secondary new parents
Location: first floor of the main building
Time: 3.30-4.00pm

Managebac App is available only for iOS

Morning swim club has started

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SWIMMING CLUB is open to all M1 to D2 students on Tuesday afternoons (4pm- 5pm) & Wednesday mornings (8am to 8:35am). All students welcome to come and improve their swimming fitness and technique.

Alastair Gibson
Leader of Learning for Physical and Health Education

We inspire learning and intercultural understanding,
enriqueciendo la vida de nuestros niños y nuestro mundo
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SIGA Golf Academy

Based at Alcaidesa Golf Club and boasting outstanding facilities, including 2 18 hole courses, floodlit driving range, swing analysis centre, 2 putting greens, 2 chipping greens and a magnificent clubhouse. Come and see what we have to offer; a chat with the coach Juan Antonio Marín Ramos will help place you at the right level and you can start playing straight away.

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The Kindred Project

“To promote education as a force for good to help create a more peaceful world”.

Aims to offer young people opportunities to explore, discuss and work together to help sustain change both locally and globally by developing leadership and critical thinking skills through projects requiring intercultural understanding and community building.

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The perfect start in life before moving to SIS. Situated in beautiful surroundings with views of the Santa Maria polo fields, Fundamentals has plenty of outdoor gardens for children to explore and discover their world. Well-equipped classrooms cater for small children of different ages, and there are lots of activities including cookery, painting, nature walks and play.

Copyright © 2015 Sotogrande International School, All rights reserved.

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