School Newsletter 20.12.2019


Monthly newsletter

20th December 2019

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We are a learning community, passionate about providing an International Education, which inspires and encourages learning and intercultural understanding.
We facilitate self-discovery and the development of unique interests, gifts and talents, whilst promoting service learning as a force for good in the world.

Dates for your diary

Wednesday, 8 January 20201st day of Spring term

Dear Parents and Guardians,

As the year comes to an end, I want to reflect on an amazing term at SIS, culminating in the SIS Christmas Challenge which took place yesterday. Seeing so many parents, teachers and students taking part together made it the perfect community event to end the school year.

This week has been full of festive activities at SIS, with Christmas performances from EC1 to P2, the SIS Choir Tour and of course the PTA Christmas Market last Saturday. Thank you to the PTA, for their hard work, dedication and time, the Christmas Market was a great event and I enjoyed seeing so many of your there. If you would like to join the PTA to help out at events, they would very much like to hear from you! Please contact

This month we have said farewell to Dennis O’Connor. Dennis has led our PTA for the last year and a half and has really helped to increase the size, variety and style of PTA events. I would publicly like to thank him for his time and commitment to SIS, which he has given freely. His work with the Advisory Panel has been both powerful and impactful.  Jessica Santos and Abigail Murphy will be taking the reins leading the PTA, and Jessica has kindly offered to step into the Advisory Panel role to represent the parent community.

Additionally, we have also said farewell to Nick Jefferson. Nick has been part of the Advisory Panel since it started three years ago. Over the past two and a half years, Nick has been a strong advocate for traffic safety, has supported the creation of the bus park, the safer walkways around the outside of school and helped us to transition to self management of the cantina.  We will be looking to replace Nick on the Advisory Panel and I will be in touch regarding this process in the New Year.

I wish you a wonderful holiday and a fabulous start to 2020! There are lots of exciting projects taking place next year, with the new building and sports facilities starting to take shape and, of course, the much anticipated SotoRox V music festival – follow their plans on both Instagram and Facebook.  We look forward to welcoming you back on Wednesday 8th January.

Best wishes,

Jak Kearney



Dear Sotogrande community,

We are so happy to announce TWO SAVE THE DATES! Because for the first time ever Sotorox will be combined with Sotosmash! Two days of insane talent demonstrated by the determined kids of SIS, who will have never felt more like rockstars & DJ’s. On Thursday 13th and Friday 14th of February the festival that takes place at the school every 4 years, will again exceed its expectations and blow you all away.  Save the dates and make sure to secure your places to watch and enjoy the spectacular live music, you will be able to sing and swing along to after the Christmas holidays!! Don’t miss it!!

PTA News

It is with some sadness that I must communicate that the O’Connors will be leaving Sotogrande to move to London.  This timing was not in our plans when the year started, but we are excited for this next chapter in our lives.  It has been an honor, privilege and brought me tremendous joy to serve as the chairman of the PTA  over the last 18 months.  In fact, it has been one of the most rewarding experiences during my time here in Sotogrande.

I am very proud of what we have accomplished: we have raised and distributed more money than ever before, and more importantly, we have helped to foster a greater sense of community and cohesiveness at SIS.  I would like to thank all of the PTA members, as well as the dozens of volunteers who have worked so hard on our various projects and events.

Jessica Santos and Abigail Murphy have agreed to step in and co-chair the committee for the remainder of the year, which gives me great comfort that the committee will be in very capable hands.  I would like to encourage each and every one of you to help them continue the PTA’s efforts to enhance the sense of community at SIS.  If you are not already involved, please consider reaching out and volunteering your time.  We have been a part of several international school communities, none of which has been as special as SIS.  My family and I thank you for an amazing three and a half years.

Happy holiday, and all the best,

Dennis O’Connor

Chairman PTA


Join our conversation classes to improve your Spanish level. Classes will take place every last Friday of the month.

Cantina News

The Cantina Team offered last Thursday a special menu for these dates that are approaching that consisted of:

– Rocket salad with goat cheese
– Endives with seafood cocktail
– Picadillo soup with serrano ham and egg
Main course:
– Stuffed chicken roasted with thyme
– Stuffed juicy veal
Side dishes:
– Smash sweet potato
– Potato Rostie
– Sautéed spinach in cream sauce
– Piquillo peppers stuffed with alboronía
– Homemade cheese cake with red fruit jam

I hope you enjoyed it and we take this opportunity to wish you all a Merry Christmas and a well-deserved holiday!

Elite Sports - Golf

Elite Sports – Golf

The run up to Christmas has been busy for our Elite Golf students, with a number of tournaments taking place. Here’s a round-up of some of their achievements.

Triple A World Junior Golf Series

The Real Club Sotogrande was host to the Triple A 500 Tournament at the end of November. Tiger Christensen won the U21 Scratch category with 2 impressive rounds of 68/69 winning by 7 shots. Wigo Weisner finished in 3rd position.

Carl Siemens won the U16 scratch category with a score of 72/69 and Max Kempa took the U16 Handicap champions trophy home.

Everyone who plays golf will understand how exciting these players were to play the tournament at Real Sotogrande where the Nations Cup is regularly hosted.

Alcaidesa Golf Club is host to the last tournament of 2020 (13th and 14th of December) where the players are competing for those important points to move up the Order of Merit in what promises to be a windy weekend.

Don’t forget to sign up to the upcoming tournaments and WAGr events in 2020 which are open to all golfers.

TTS Tournament Travel Squad

This week a group of players from the Elite Programme had an early start on Tuesday morning, they had to be up and ready to leave the Boarding house at 3 AM. 10 players from the Tournament Travel Squad accompanied by coaches of the Jason Floyd Golf Academy travelled to Miami to compete in two tournaments including the Doral Publix @trumpDoral and the WORLD FLORIDA CHALLENGE on the IMG Junior Golf Tour.

They started off their trip cheering on Miami Heat in their match against Atlanta Hawks.

Good luck and see you again in January

Message Emma Butler

Message From Emma Butler, Head of Primary

As we come to the end of the year I would like to congratulate all our students and thank all our teachers and teaching assistants for a productive and successful first term. I would also like to take this opportunity to wish all our families a wonderful holiday season and a Happy New Year.


Classrooms decorated with student artwork provided the perfect setting for our festive workshops. Parents and children worked together to make Christmas decorations to take home. Thank you to everyone who took part and to our Fundamentals Team for making this such a wonderful event.

Expressive Arts

Please join me in congratulating all the EC1-P2 students who over the last two weeks have taken part in some amazing expressive arts performances. It was wonderful to see so many confident and happy students up on stage. Thank you to the EC1-P2 teams for all their hard work and a special thank you to Miss Joana and Mr Luis for being the driving force behind all the performances.


EC1/EC2 End Of Term Expressive Arts Performance  


P1 End Of Term Expressive Arts Performance    



P2 End Of Term Expressive Arts Performance 


At the beginning of December, P1 linked all their learning to Pirates.

In language they read pirate stories, created their own pirate characters, wrote messages in a bottle, made 3D pirate settings, wrote their own stories and acted out scenes. In math, the children loved using golden coins to make different amounts and demonstrating their understanding of place value. During their materials units, the students were excited to open a very special treasure chest and explore the materials of the treasure. The study culminated in an action packed Pirate day. The P1 students and teachers dressed up and enjoyed a fantastic day of Pirate themed activities. The highlight of the day was a treasure hunt around the school in search of a chest full of edible golden coins.

What a fantastic day for all students and teachers!


This week we held our P3-P6 celebration assembly. It was a pleasure to present many of our students with their value certificates.

Student Ambassadors

P6 Student Ambassadors

This week I was able to announce the students who have been chosen to be our P6 Student Ambassadors for 2019/2020. Well done to Marlene, Isla, Enrique, Maria D, Camille, Florence and Matty.

Student Council

On Monday 16th December the primary Student Council visited Hogar Betania in La Línea.
With your generous donations ,we packed 140 carrier bags with Christmas goodies for under privileged families in La Línea. These will be distributed on Three Kings.


Congratulations to Jackson H (P3), Christopher G (P3) and Charlie H (P2) who attended the National Rugby Mele Tournament held last weekend in Madrid which brings together the best clubs in Spain.  Christopher and Charlie’s Sub 8 team were proclaimed champions in their category.  Well Done!


French Class

During our French Class, we created a French healthy menu for a day in the cantina. We did this in order to show what we had been learning in this unit. Our unit was based on healthy lifestyle, including food, exercise and anything affecting your body whether it is good or bad. For this activity we designed posters to inform people of what can cause an unhealthy lifestyle and how to be healthy using conditional and subjunctive tenses. In addition to this the menus we created were a selection of food that played a role in a nutritious and balanced diet. Our menu consisted of:

–           Goat cheese salad / Salade au fromage de chèvre

–           Onion soup / Soupe à l’oignon

–           Quiche Lorraine

–           Spinach Quiche / Quiche aux épinards

–           Chocolate Mousse / Mousse au chocolat

Furthermore, we did a set of games in order to expand the student’s knowledge of French cuisine and culture. We selected easy and fun games for the younger students EC1-P2 and then more educational games such as “bilboquet” for P3-P6.

Bon appétit!

M4 Spanish Language Acquisition

Nowadays, one of the most important issues for young people all over the world is climate change. Spain is currently hosting the international Climate Change Conference in Madrid and we are using this event as the context for a unit of inquiry about the environment.

The M4 Language Acquisition Spanish students have had the opportunity to investigate an environmental issue of their choice while working on their speaking skills. They have studied how to make a speech and put it in to practice presenting the results of their investigation to their peers.


U18 Basketball

Last friday the U18 Boys Basketball squad played a triangular set of friendly matches against the American School of Rota and Bayside School in Gibraltar. The team narrowly lost against Bayside in what was a very exciting match up until the last quarter. Unfortunately, despite a positive display in effort and attitude on the court, the team were unable to match the experience of a very well established Rota side and lost. With some

Universities and Careers

Please follow this link for more detailed information on the events that took place in U&C this November

  • University of Royal Holloway visit
  • CIS Forum on University Admission. Bilbao
  • University of Navarra visit
  • Sotogrande University Convention
  • Launch of the M5 pathways into the upper School
  • Mock Medical interviews preparation for our future Doctors

Peter Permaculture

Peter Permaculture says “Hurray for the PTA!”Thanks to the generous support of the PTA, the first of the worm boxes is not only constructed but FULL! How? Already? Yes it’s a true team effort! As part of his M5 Personal Project, Max collected a week’s worth of vegetable waste as part of his analysis of the flow of food into and out of the SIS cantina. Iñigo’s project is building the worm boxes to convert the food waste into compost, and with the financial support of the PTA, the guidance of Permaculture Super Volunteer Russell Crimes, and the extra workhands of M3 Community Project students Georgii, Timofey, Tyler and Ryan, three are fully finished and ready to go. What’s inside? A layer of the original weeds from the Permaculture Project from September, a layer of aged horse manure from Juanjo Delgado, our resident forestry and garden guru, over 100 kg of food waste from the cantina, another layer of organic matter (aka more dead weeds) and lots and lots of worms! Want to get involved? Contact

Winter Term’s Reflections

We, at the SIS Boarding House, are very proud of what the students and staff have achieved this term. We started the academic year by welcoming over 40 new students to the house, helping them to settle and build new relationships. We also welcomed three new University interns and Nurse Lynette onto our staff team!

There is a truly wonderful atmosphere at the house with lifelong friendships from all year groups being created. Our students have been amazingly successful in every aspect of school life too. Our elite golfers and tennis players have achieved new heights in high level tournaments, our football players were triumphant in a UK tournament, boarders have helped to create winning debate teams and one boarder was awarded with the best question at an environmental conference. Other Boarders have performed live for the first (and some a hundredth) time, helped out with local charities and volunteered in every show the school has hosted. The list is truly remarkable and endless.

We have had over 20 students use our Flexi-Boarding option this term. The increase of students using our Flexi-Boarding option highlights the importance of this service for the SIS community and it is always lovely to welcome new faces into our community!

This term the Boarding House has invested in several facilities such as new equipment in the gym, a pool table in the Games Room and a new acoustic piano. Several new art projects have begun and we look forward to encouraging more student-led projects next term.

The activities this term have been diverse, allowing the interest of every student to be met. The most popular activity was an adventure to Isla Magica with over 40 boarders attending. Activities have ranged from paintballing to crazy golf to waterparks! The students have had the opportunity to create professionally edited films, design their own chocolate bars and they have travelled to Jerez, Malaga, Tarifa and Mijas. Exposing the students to new activities encourages experiential learning opportunities, allowing them to explore new interests outside of the classroom whilst having awesome fun!

We look forward to seeing what next term has in store for us.

Merry Christmas,
The Boarding Team

Christmas at the Boarding House

Christmas is a time when families come together to celebrate, and the Boarding family at SIS is no different!

It is a time to reflect on things we are grateful for and to bring people together. At the Boarding House, we encourage our students to look back on the progress they have made this term and look at what they can achieve in the new year. This past month has been a celebration of our boarder’s accomplishments, as we embraced the season with decorations, dinners and a range of different activities!

We are a learning community, passionate about providing an International Education, which inspires and encourages learning and intercultural understanding. We facilitate self-discovery and the development of unique interests, gifts and talents, whilst promoting service learning as a force for good in the world.

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