School Newsletter 20.05.2016

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

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School Newsletter – 20th May 2016

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Message from the Head


Dear Parents and Guardians,

Well, the weather has changed for the better and the addition of sunshine has allowed us to maximize our learning opportunities this week at SIS. As I walked past the EC1 and EC2 outside learning space on Monday, I watched the children building farms ahead of their trip on Tuesday. They were building shelters and pens for the pigs and chickens and feeling very excited about the next day!

On Monday our P2 students visited Hogar Betania for their unit-based trip. They spent their time learning about Hogar Betania, its purpose and explored some of the projects. P2 were working on a project with Henry Shields in D1 to make pallet benches (similar to ones you can see outside of the sports hall). Part of the purpose of the trip was for the P2 students to work as teams to paint their pallets ready for Henry to make benches. They had a talk from one of the interns at Hogar Betania called Amadou and finished off the day with some play time with the children from the centre. They finished off their very busy week of helping, with a sale on Thursday! Thank you to the P2 team for their support over this week.

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On Tuesday we hosted a visit from Apple Europe. They came and met our students, leadership team and toured our school to understand how we use Apple products to enhance learning across our school. They were very impressed by what they saw, the confidence of our students and the students’ abilities to explain their learning journeys. They and we would also like to thank and commend the five students: Chloe Barnett, Ralph Halkett, Maria Romero Martin, Enola Gavira Gavira & Julian Fernandez Barcellona, who escorted and guided them round our school.
Tuesday afternoon also saw our M5 & Diploma art students enjoying the final one of our three NADFAS art lectures this year; ‘Pop goes the Artist from Warhol to Dylan’.

This Wednesday we waved off our P6 students as they left for the P6 celebration and transition trip. This is a key part of the student’s journey from Primary to Middle school. You will hear all about this trip next week; they returned safely on Thursday, exhausted but with large smiles on their faces. The P1 students left for their big journey, where they traveled by bus, boat and train to really live and experience their unit.

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Friday witnessed the end of the D2 students’ exams, which means that, they have officially left school!  On Tuesday it is “prank day” for our D2 students, they will have the opportunity to come in, play jokes on the teachers and decorate the school for 1 hour. Please be aware of this as you arrive to school after the long weekend.  We will be holding their graduation next Friday. We hope the D2 students will come back to the end of year celebration assembly on June 28th, so we as a community can recognize their achievements!

Also on Tuesday next week, students from P5 to D1 will have the opportunity to listen to visiting author, Vanessa Altin. On Wednesday Mrs. Bannell and Mr. Mungles will host an information session for D2 parents from 9-10am in the staffroom; this will be an opportunity for D2 parents to come, ask questions and gain a firm understanding of the whole process of results day. We will run the same session with D2 students on Thursday, when they come to school for graduation rehearsal.  It is imperative that the D2 students attend.

In addition, we will have the Primary First and the Primary sports days next week. These are open events for parents to attend.  We hope you will come, cheer and support the children as they enjoy their sports day in the sun.

Finally I wish you a wonderful long weekend and remind you that the school will be shut on Monday, but open Tuesday, with Prank day!

Best wishes

Jak Kearney

Link to instructions for Parent photos in Managebac 2016


Whole School News

Author visit for P5 – D1 students

Former reporter, turned author Vanessa Altin will visit SIS on Tuesday 24th May.
Vanessa’s first book ‘The Pomegranate Tree’ is a child’s account of being caught up in the war in Syria. The book is written in a diary style as the account of a 13-year-old Kurdish girl desperate to reunite her family, which has been split up by the conflict.

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Vanessa will talk about her background as a journalist, and how she was inspired to write a story of the Syrian crisis, based on true events, after spending months in the refugee camps as a reporter. She will show pictures of the Kurdish children that inspired her story and hold an interactive discussion about how these children struggle to survive.  She will read from her book and talk about the differences between writing for a newspaper and writing a book, and will conclude each of her 4 sessions with an open Q&A and book signing.

Signed copies of The Pomegranate Tree will be available to buy on the day, price 12€.

Arts News

Please come and support our DP Theatre students in their hilarious full-length production of The Play that Goes Wrong. Suitable for P4+

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Send my friend to school’ Day / Bandana Day

Next Friday is Send My Friend To School Day. As usual, students will bring 1 euro to help sponsor a child to go to school at Nabugabo Community School in Uganda.   In return they are able to wear home clothes.

On Friday it will also be Bandana Day.  To raise awareness of cancer, and support Danii’s charity, children may wear a bandana to school.  They can buy bandanas from Danii’s charity at the school gate or wear one from home.

Sotosol Walk 2016

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The 12th annual Sotosol Walk takes place next Saturday 28th May to raise funds for The Danii Children’s Cancer Charity which supports very sick children and their families in an incredible number of ways.  There is a new course for the walk/run this year: it will start and finish at the Trocadero Beach Club.  There is a planned 8km route, which can be completed once or twice. Dogs are welcome on the walk, but will not be allowed in the children’s area at the Beach Club.  All students are encouraged to complete their sponsor form for the event, and we would like encourage as many families as possible to participate in this fantastic community charity event. Registration is at 9.15am.

Shirts and vests, price 10 Euros, are still on sale after school with all proceeds going to Danii’s Charity. Get your shirt/vest early so as not to be disappointed.

P2 Service Learning Experience in Hogar Betania

In connection with their current Unit of Inquiry “Helping Others”, where students inquire into The Kindred Project’s raison d’être, 38 enthusiastic P2 students headed down to Hogar Betania in La Linea to learn more about the work carried out by this local organisation that aims to support people in risk of social exclusion. To read all about the children’s experience and see the photos of the day, simply click on the following here Thank you P2!!!

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Soul Night

Dear parents,

Mark Fea and I will be putting on a special show called Soul Night in the Sotogrande Theatre on June 3rd. The evening is designed to take students to the next level in their performances and have them sing with a professional band behind them. So for this event we will be featuring the vocal talents of Scarlett Jenkins, Veronica Malka and Jade Burgess.

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The stimulus for this show was reading an email from a former teacher at SIS, Dave Batten, and hearing how there has been an outbreak of yellow fever in a neighbouring village to Nabugabo. The Ugandan government has not provided funds to get staff or local people vaccinated; the World Health Organization has promised to help but they are snowed under in Angola with another yellow fever outbreak.
So we have decided to start up a fundraiser with this event, which we are calling Muvac (Music for Vaccines).
Tickets, priced at 10 Euros, will be on sale at the gate in the mornings from Tuesday onwards.
Please note there are only 100 tickets available, so please buy yours early to avoid disappointment and to help save a life.

Paul Skelton

Basketball Camps at Sotogrande International School in July

We are both proud and excited to announce that Real Madrid Assistant Coach and Spanish Olympic medal winning basketball coach Chus Mateo will be hosting two camps here at SIS in July. In addition to Chus and his team, other famous players and coaches will be visiting the Camps.

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The two camps are a Beginners Camp for children age 4 – 16 years old and the Chus Mateo Academy for 12 – 18 year olds who are  serious about improving their game. Both camps offer residential options at the Sotogrande International Boarding House and include trips to the beach and free time around the pools.

For further information on these camps please contact

Summer camps 2016

Making plans for the summer? Don’t forget that in order to claim the exclusive 100€ discount per child for day Summer Camps and 150€ discount per child for residential Summer Camps, bookings must be confirmed by the end of May. Please see Henry Reyes in reception for further information on this fantastic deal for SIS children.

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PTA News


We are delighted to offer a First Aid Course for parents on Monday 6th June and Tuesday 7th June, from 09:15 until 13:15 on both days, at the San Roque Campus.
The course will cover basic first response and life support, both for adults and children, and will be delivered in English.  The course will be taught by Debbie Mahon, one of our school nurses, who has extensive A&E experience.
The cost of the course is 35 euros, including books and you must attend both sessions. The class is limited to 12 parents.
We will be offering a similar course in Spanish before the end of term, and are just confirming dates. Depending on demand, we will also repeat this class at a later date.
If you would like to reserve a place, or would like more information, please email

Fundamentals News

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Working with a Lightbox is a fascinating activity for little ones. Using different materials, different objects and even paintings allows them to investigate the effects that the light has on them. A magical universe that attracts them and motivates them to learn in a creative and participatory manner.

Primary School News

Saturday 4th June – Family Fun Day Spring Fair

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Message From Emma Butler

Unit of inquiry related excursions play a major part in extending the children’s learning experiences beyond the classroom walls. Our out of the classroom experiences are carefully woven into the whole learning process. Our school has always been well known for making the most of our local area and using trips to support students’ learning and this week five out of our eight classes experienced some wonderful trips.

Early Childhood trip to “El Dorado Farm”

This week EC1 children experienced their first school trip.  They loved travelling on the bus to the farm.  At the farm they were able to participate in bread making and milking cows.  Much of the day was devoted to observing animals in a farm environment.  This experience has helped develop their knowledge of animal families.  Now the teachers and students have some shared first hand experiences that they can discuss and use for the rest of the unit.

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EC2 have been inquiring into “What can we be when we grow up.” They have also been discussing aptitudes and attitudes and how they can shape our future.
By visiting “El Dorado Farm” children were able to investigate the difference between what a farmer needs to do his job and how a farmer needs to be to do what he does at the farm.
On Thursday the students reflected on the trip. Within their reflections and observations they said that Paco the farmer was kind, responsible, helpful and funny. They also said that he loves animals, has a very cool tractor and lots of room for all the animals and plants.

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P2 spend the day supporting Hogar Betania

Connected to their current unit ‘Sharing The Planet’ titled ‘Helping others’. P2 students spent a wonderful day at Hogar Betania on Monday where their main activity was painting pallets ready for them to be re-assembled as garden furniture by one of our Diploma Students and The Kindred Project volunteers.

An ‘incredible journey’ as P1 go travelling

Travelling takes planning. P1 have been learning about organisation and time management. They helped plan this incredible journey that they went on Wednesday – bus, train and boat, all in one day! They now know that with care and attention, an excursion can go as planned without a hitch. It did mean we had to rush from the boat to the train, but we made it on time as we thought we would, to the delight of the other passengers who were not expecting to share their carriage with forty-two school children!
“This has been the best trip of all, ever!” said the children.

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P6 trip

On Wednesday P6 left for an overnight trip to Pueblo Blanco, Olvera.
We will hear more about this trip next week.

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Success in the arts and sports
Well done to James Butler (P4) who came second in the British Young Photographer of the Year Competition and to Lola Martin (P6), who took third place in dressage at the CDN2* competition in Segovia.

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P3 Action

On Wednesday P3 took action to support endangered animals. The children created colourful banners and wrote catchy slogans for them, and then paraded around the school on a protest march. They attracted lots of attention and were successful in their mission to raise awareness!

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Thank you to Chloe Barnett and Ralph Halkett from P6

On Tuesday Chloe and Ralph represented our Primary School. Not only did they join the School Leadership Team and visitors for lunch, but took the lead and escorted our visitors from Apple on a guided tour.

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Primary First Garden and Play Area

A fantastic place to play and watch our plants grow. Than you to the PTA for sponsoring our ever growing garden and play area.

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Save the date! Family Fun Day Spring Fair and The Primary Sports Days

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Secondary School News

Congratulations to the Class of 2016 on completing their IB diploma examinations!

This has been a test of stamina and resilience, as well as of knowledge and understanding, and all the students have shown great courage and determination throughout the three week examination period.

Following on from this, D2 students are reminded of an essential:

Post Results Information Meeting and Graduation Rehearsal
Thursday 26th May at 11:00

This meeting is to explain the procedure following the issue of results on 6th July and to prepare for the Graduation Celebration on 27th May. We should finish between 1:30 and 2:00pm.
It is very important that all D2 students attend.

M3 Community Project – Charity Golf Tournament

Alejandro Nestares & Javier Rando

As part of our community project we decided to help a centre for people at risk of exclusion in Algeciras, called “Comedor Padre Cruceyra”. Last Saturday, 14th of May, we organised a golf tournament at Alcaidesa Golf; it was an amazing experience. We looked for companies to support our charity event and finally, we managed to get 21 sponsors! The tournament was a success, over 100 people came and we earned over 3,000€!!! We had lots of prizes for the top 10 pairs, and we raffled lots of other very good prizes.

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The 2016 Olympiad

The PE Department is excited to announce the 2016 Olympiad Event. Look out for the exciting events based around CITIUS, ALTIUS and FORTIUS theme happening on the following days:

High Jump, Long Jump, Triple Jump, Standing Board Jump, Sargent Jump Test

Shot, Plank, Javelin, Squats, Medicine Ball Throw

100m, 200m, 400m, 800m, 4 x 100m, 1250m loop
Who will triumph out of the Phoenicians, Romans, Greeks or Egyptians?!

Addendum to item in previous newsletter

Last week’s report on visit of Global Citizenship students to the Port of Algeciras on May 10th, accidentally omitted the public acknowledgement of our thanks and appreciation to the Port Authority, that facilitated the boat trip which was such an integral part of our visit, and particularly special thanks to Mr. Javier Lopez, who found time in his busy schedule to welcome us in the auditorium. We hope to have mmore of these wonderful learning opportunities in the future!


Boarding News

The Sotogrande International Boarders had a mixed time helicoptering at the weekend.  Half the group had a phenomenal time flying a helicopter through the sky around Marbella but, unfortunately  the wind became too strong for the second group and they will have to wait for their chance.  It does mean though that this long weekend will be an exceptionally busy one!  The Boarders will be participating in a two-day kite surfing course in Tarifa, finishing off the helicopter lessons and hopefully getting a chance to see the new ‘X Men’ movie in Puerto Banus.

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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Sistech Academy

Since SIS students are privileged to be members of an IT learning environment that is an official Apple School. Our IT staff are not only trained by Apple but are themselves certified Apple Trainers. So uncertainties about using Apples vast suite of applications and devices are becoming second-nature to your children and the same level of expertise and teaching can be put at the disposal of parents too, and even other adults not yet members of the SIS family…

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