School Newsletter 09.02.2018

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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.

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9th February 2018

Versión española 

 School Calendar

Monday 12 FebruaryP3 Unit based trip
Wednesday 14 FebruaryP4 Unit based trip
Wednesday 14- Friday 16 FebruaryD1 Mid year examinations
Friday 16 FebruarySend a Child to School Day
Friday 16 FebruaryM5 Reports published on Managebac
Tuesday 20 FebruaryPTA Open meeting – 19:30, venue TBC
Thursday 22 FebruaryCombined Mother Tongue Day/ Dia de Andalucia celebrations – (See whole school news)

Dear Parents and Guardians,

I would like to begin this newsletter by publicly congratulating Christine Barling for her hard work, dedication and commitment to the ISTA theatre festival. This was the first time SIS had hosted such an event and we did not fall short! 89 students from 6 international schools took part in a series of activities over 4 days last week.  The students linked with students from our community partner Hogar Betania to investigate the theme of “what is a home” through music, drama and dance. The final performance on Saturday was a spectacular event, which utilized the whole school environment.  None of this would have been possible without the support of Jamie Templeton, Dan Maloney and Valentina Stirling, or without the support of you, our parent community who hosted students over the time they were here.  Thank you for supporting our community event, for demonstrating deep-seated values and for your attendance at the final performance.

On Tuesday we hosted a further community event, as the Council of International Schools sent 2 visitors to inspect our school for the Global Citizenship award that we have been working on for the last 2 years. Tuesday afternoon allowed project leaders and students from each of our projects to share their work with the community.  Thank you to all the project leaders and Jen Liptrot for their support, leadership and coordination.

Tonight we will host Kiss the CASbah event at Bella Notte in the Sotogrande Marina.  Students from D1 have taken part in a food hygiene course and tonight will cook a 3-course meal for over 250 people.  Students in the secondary school will perform music whilst parents and students eat, relax and enjoy the atmosphere.  The event is aiming to raise 3500€ to take to our community partner in Asni later this year.

Finally I would like to end on an important note. The police have pointed out that many of you are parking illegally. Double parking is not allowed (as highlighted in our traffic safety video).  Police have said that they will start to ticket offenders. To increase the safety of our community, reduce work for the police and reduce the fines they will issue, we politely request that you use the parking spaces provided and arrange to meet students at your cars. I know this can mean that students have to walk a little further to meet you, but it ensures a safer environment for all.

Thank you for your support

Best wishes

Jak Kearney

ISTA Drama Festival

Many of us were lost for words and left with a tear in our eye after the touchng and impactful showcase of work that wrapped up the ISTA High School Drama Connect Festival. 89 students from 6 international schools and Hogar Betania were involved in an intensive few days of workshops that included filming with Reyard Productions, Movement with Stomp artist Nathan Conroy and Sevillianas led by our talented SIS teachers! 6 ISTA professional theatre artists also delivered ensemble workshops exploring the concept of ´Home is…´ and how we can connect with one another through non-verbal communication. The process itself created many magical moments of intercultural interchange and the level of commitment and skill from all students involved was incredible.


We would like to thank everyone behind the scenes that helped make this unforgettable event a reality but in particular the team at Hogar Betania and the 10 Connect students from this community whose participation bought a very special quality and outcome to this festival.

Christine Barling

“It was a great experience,”
“It has been a pleasure to host the girls – they have stolen out hearts”
“I wish they could have stayed longer”
“They were lovely, charming and very polite”
“They are absolutely gorgeous”
“We shared stories and comparisons of our cultures”
“They were a great addition to our household”
“It gave our kids a chance to learn about other cultures close up”

These are just some of the comments from the SIS families that stepped forward to host our visiting drama students last week.

As the hosting school, we had to find homes for each of the overseas students, and we were incredibly lucky to have amazing volunteers from within our school community. They shared their homes and their lives with strangers, although as the saying goes “strangers are just friends that you have not yet met ”.

Our host families definitely went the extra mile; from hosting FOUR students, to waiting up until the early hours for a missed connection. From hosting students with special requirements to finding time to show their guests a part of Andalucia. They were amazing, and many did not even have children who were part of the festival.

So a huge thank you to Anna and Tabi; Enola, Jasper, Daniel, Sebastian and Lucía; Fabio, Jacob, Selena, Manel and Nina; Sophie, Ben, Jackson, Sofia, Frank and Miki; Antoine, Julia, Eduardo, Aiden, Ethan and Declan; Ava, our youngest hosts Oliver and Jimena, and not forgetting Emma Flynn – and my sincere apologies to anyone I may have missed. We could not have done it without you!

Barbara Peacock

 Global Citizenship International Certification

On Tuesday 6th and Wednesday 7th February we hosted two visitors from the Council of International Schools.  Prior to this visit, project leaders submitted evaluative reports of the various International Certification projects to CIS, and then during the visit the evaluators met with the project leaders to review the final projects and to discuss the progress made in applying the criteria throughout the International Certification programme as well as opportunities for future growth. Classroom walk-throughs enabled our visitors to see examples of students’ day-to-day engagement with global citizenship learning, both in a primary and secondary school setting.

On Tuesday afternoon our International Certification Group presented work related to Global Citizenship in the form of a Showcase in the school cantina, a great opportunity for project teams to share the results and impact of each project and celebrate the accomplishments realized during certification process.

Thank-you to everyone who visited our Showcase, and thank-you to the many staff and many students who have been involved over the two days, sharing their experiences with CIS evaluators and the whole community.

Jen Liptrot
Global Citizenship Coordinator

Advisory Board report

On Wednesday 31st January the Advisory Board met for the first meeting of the New Year. Feedback from stakeholders was shared on the development of the walkways and on the expansion plans video; members were also given a preview of the Annual Report.

Initial feedback on the development of the walkways and the first traffic lights in Sotogrande was positive. Parents felt more comfortable about their children walking to school and about parking on the other side of the main road. Nevertheless the transport and parking issue is ongoing; as such, parents and the school alike need to continue to find ways to address it. This includes encouraging fewer cars, more walking, cycling etc. and zero tolerance for dangerous and/or selfish parking and driving.

Feedback from the expansion video was positive. Parents and students liked knowing the intentions of the school and enjoyed the future expansion ideas, linked to our mission.

The Annual Report was shared, prior to being sent to all parents on Thursday 1st February. The Advisory Board will feed back in more detail regarding this at the next meeting.

Total Dictation



annual Russian language literacy test held around the world

 If you want to challenge yourself in Russian, please reserve a day of Saturday, April 14 2018 at  Sotogrande International School

It is open to any age or any numbers of local Russian-speaking community representatives. A text for dictation is usually written by a famous contemporary Russian writer and read out by some famous Russian people

Уважаемые ученики, родители и друзья

международной школы Сотогранде, а также русскоговорящие жители

нашего региона

 ТотAльный диктAнт — ежегодная образовательная акция в форме добровольного диктанта для всех желающих.

Цель данной акции — показать, что быть грамотным сегодня – это важно. Текст для ТотАльного диктАнта каждый год пишет известный писатель. Участвовать в ТотАльном диктАнте может любой желающий, независимо от возраста, пола, образования, вероисповедания, профессии, семейного положения, интересов и политических взглядов.

ТотAльный диктAнт 2018

состоится в субботу 14 апреля
в Sotogrande International School

За дополнительной информацией и регистрацией обращайтесь к Виктории Соколовой

Mother Tongue Day/ Dia de Andalucía celebrations – Thursday 22 February

This year we will be combining our celebrations for these two important days with the theme of ‘Andalucía embracing cultures’.  We are hoping to involve parents from different cultures in various parts of our day, helping to show and share aspects of their own culture and language, and also perhaps talking about some of their own experiences of Andalucia as their ‘host country’.

More details of this exciting day will be circulated in next week’s newsletter, but meantime a call for parent volunteers from any of the following cultures: Belgium, China, Denmark, France, Germany, Netherlands, Russia, UK, USA and of course Andalucía!

For more details and to help with primary school workshops, please contact Fiona Clarkson (; to help with Secondary country exhibitions and stalls please contact Rocio Ruiz ( ).

Additionally if any parent would like to lead and organize a “stand” at the secondary exhibition from any other country, please do not hesitate to contact us.



The Kindred Project News

Valentine’s Day gifts

D1 students are organizing a sale of Valentine’s Day gifts such as lollipops, roses, and chocolate roses; these may be purchased beforehand by students and parents and will be delivered to the named students on Valentine’s Day. Parents are welcome to purchase presents for their child at the school gate any day after school up till Tuesday 13th February. The money raised will be going to Nabugabo Community Learning Centre, Uganda.

Paloma Jaudel Melián D1



Valentine’s Disco


A fun, fantastic opportunity for P1-P4 students for Friday the 16th of February!
Organised by Diploma student and KP member, Ella McCormack, to raise money to be personally delivered during her trip to Asni, Morocco in March.Permission letters will be handed out in class next week!


Send a Child to School Day

Send a Child to School Day is a week early this month! Don’t forget to visit the Dreaming Dragons Pop Up next Friday, purchase second hand uniform, saffron from Morocco, books and KP merchandise.



Baby Product donations

Thank you everyone who contributed to the Baby Product drop! Your generous donations were taken to Hogar Betania in La Linea on Thursday last week. These will be distributed to families from the local area, who are in need of these baby products. Thank you for contributing and really making a difference!

Laura Pastor D1



Message from Miss Emma Butler

Parent Reading Workshop

Thank you to Miss Lisa Clegg, our PYP Language Coordinator, and to the parents who joined the primary reading workshop on Tuesday. As always it is very useful to share ideas with our parents on how to support children at home, not only in decoding the words when reading but also by extending comprehension skills through appropriate questioning. Within our school we encourage parents to join our workshops.

P1 unit based trip

After having to postpone their trip a couple of times due to the inclement weather, P1 eventually set off for a day of orange picking up in San Pablo. This trip relates to their unit of inquiry on Culture. During the day the students had an opportunity to experience first hand an Andalucian tradition of orange picking and orange juice making.

In exchange for a bag of oranges, the students were able to make a donation to the Kindred Project, and link to the school in Nabugabo, Uganda.

Ecoschool Update

At the GCP showcase on Tuesday, the primary Eco-school students were proud to show their parents all the hard work that they have been doing this year during the lunchtime club.  Activities have included planting a vegetable patch, a citrus fruit orchard, a herb garden for the school kitchen and a worm farm to recycle food waste collected from around the campus. The children also showed visitors the liquid fertilizer produced by the worms, which will be sold through the Dreaming Dragons Kindred Project, after it has been tested for nutrients by our secondary Environmental Systems students.

DP2019 History trip to London

This year marks my 22nd visit to London with history students, with a focus on Diploma exam Paper 2, themed causes and effects of 20th century wars. We arrived early Friday, at 3am, but managed to make our 10am presentations on Law and International Relations at Southbank University. This was followed by an excellent interactive lecture by a History professor at City University.

That evening we went to see the new Churchill movie, ‘The Darkest Hour’, in preparation for our visit to the Imperial War Museum. The students scaffolded WW1 essays using the wealth of source material at the museum, before going on a historical river cruise in the afternoon. Credit to Ella and Katie who stayed on the top deck despite the atrocious weather! On Sunday we were off to HMS Belfast, with a focus on WW2 naval warfare, followed by the Cabinet War Rooms to consider command and control essays, as well as visiting the excellent Churchill Museum. In the evening we went to the theatre, before spending Monday at lectures on Germany from WW1 to the Cold War. We wrapped the day up with a return visit to Wong Kei’s Chinese restaurant, before taking in the Rosetta stone amongst other items at the British Museum on Tuesday. It was a busy trip and the students were great ambassadors for Sotogrande. Thanks also to Lynnette Hillman, for assisting me on the trip.


Boarding House News

Amidst a week of rain and storms, the skies opened up with sunshine for one day last Saturday. How fitting it was then to spend the day out in Puerto Banus, enjoying the sights and sounds of the seaside town. Boarders enjoyed a few hours of free time before heading to the cinema for a show.

Maze Runner was the biggest hit amongst the students, but the Wallace and Gromit film, “Early Man”, was also a great show. All in all, it was a day well spent out on the town!


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 asa force for good in the world.

Copyright © 2017 Sotogrande International School, All rights reserved.

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