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BE PART OF THE AC COMMUNITY

Community

Boart_Races

A huge thank you to each one of you for helping to make International Festival a resounding success! I was truly moved by the spirit of community that was visible throughout the day on Saturday. Parent dedication to organizing performances, managing booths, feeding the crowd, bringing friends and family, and enjoying the day is what makes AC a special place. I was also very proud of your children. They were there for their game shifts, contributed to performances, helped at booths, and were excellent MS ambassadors! 
 
In the photo above you see another type of community at work - the Design Tech community holding their traditional boat race. It was fun to see the difference between the boats in first and second semester. Students learned a few techniques by watching past races!
 
Wednesday, April 25 is a special day for AC. We will be hosting the Special Olympics community with a basketball tournament. Opening ceremonies begin at 9:00am in the Athletic Center. All community members are welcome to attend. April 25 is a half day for students. Student dismissal is at 12:00 noon, with professional development for faculty all afternoon.

A thank you to the HS/MS parent community for organizing Dr. Silvia Martins’ presentation last Friday on “Drug & Alcohol Impact on Teens.” It was a very well attended event by both MS and HS parents and we all left the presentation more knowledgeable than when we entered.

I hope to see some of you at the Special Olympics on Wednesday. Have a most enjoyable week.

With kind regards,
Sheryl

Sheryl Gruber
Middle School Principal

sgruber@cotpaxi.k12.ec
(593-2) 382-3270 ext. 2001

"We are responsible for being informed global citizens who understand and affect positive change."
 

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Elementary News

Student_Led_Conferences

 

Thank you for attending conferences, for providing your children with celebrations and for giving us feedback!  If you have not filled out the survey, please take a moment to do so at the following link: https://goo.gl/forms/qAdkCyg9nRInq6Z62

We want to share with you that we are continuing to explore how to optimize play-time during recess for all grade levels in elementary.  We are observing children’s engagements and working collaboratively to connect with them in positive ways allowing for their independent problem-solving while also communicating that adults are there to help when needed.  

Students in 5th grade are finalizing their PYP Exhibition this week and will be sharing their learning with the community in different ways.  Students work collaboratively to inquire about real challenges in our world.  They look to present these challenges and propose solutions. Groups will connect with the community in a variety of ways to seek understanding, reaction, change and involvement.  We encourage you to support these student initiatives.

Save the date - May 8- ART EXHIBIT.  We will hold an Art Exhibit in the early evening.  Please stay tuned for details, and mark your calendars!

Paola de Pereira
ES Principal

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High School News

HS

Eight school days remain for our Seniors, then they begin writing IB or AC exams. Keep your head down and focus on your goal!

High School Counseling
All high school and middle school parents are invited to a presentation this Friday in the ACCR (Annex Building above Imagine).

Parent Expert Presentation: Drug & Alcohol Impact on Teens with Dr. Silvia Martins
Friday, April 20th 2:00 - 2:50 pm

Dr. Martins is a psychiatric epidemiologist and professor at Columbia University. She is also the parent of a third grader here at AC. She is an expert on depression, anxiety, drug use and addiction in adolescents.  Dr. Martins will conduct a presentation and discussion for all high school and middle school parents.

IB Corner
Our IB Visual Art teacher Ms Larralde opened our annual IB Visual Exhibition in the High School Learning Commons on Monday. Please come and see the work that IB students put in in their art work. It is truly amazing. Well done IB students and Ms. Larralde!

College Counseling Corner
11th Grade Students and Parents: Tuesday, April 17th, is the first day you can register for the next SAT in Quito on October, 6th.  For students who have US, and particular Canadian universities on their college lists, it is imperative they assure they have a seat on this SAT date.

12th Grade Students and Parents: May 1st is Deposit Day for U.S. Universities.  You must deposit at a U.S. financial institution by this time or risk losing your spot.  Good luck making your decisions.  Parents, if you missed my presentation on Thursday about the great transition you and your students are about to confront, you can access it here.

On Thursday, at lunchtime in the College Center, St. Francis Xavier University (Canada), Prince Edward Island University (Canada), Glion Institute of Higher Learning: Hospitality Management School (Switzerland), and Les Roches International School of Hotel Management (Switzerland) will visit us.  For those interested in Canada, hospitality and business, and Europe, this is a great opportunity!

Garth Wyncoll
HS Principal

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Celebrating Students

MS

As this newsletter is being published, we are in the midst of Parent/Student/Teacher conferences. I hope you enjoyed a day of celebrations with your child’s teachers, hearing about progress made from the beginning of the school year. The photo above shows students in action in the Science 7 classroom. They are creating a Rube Goldberg machine, custom designed to fill a faculty member’s order. This is one of many examples of hands on learning in the Middle School.
 
Wednesday, April 25 is a special day for AC. We will be hosting Special Olympics basketball in the morning, starting with opening ceremonies at 9:00am in the Athletic Center. All community members are welcome to attend. April 25 is a half day for students. Student dismissal at 12:00 noon, with professional development for faculty all afternoon.

Counselor’s Corner
Hello parents! This past week in Cougar Time we were able to start dissecting the area of respect: what it looks like, feels like, sounds like in our classrooms, in our cafeterias, on our fields, and its importance to us individually, as a middle school, and as a community. Check out some of the ideas our middle schoolers put together here in these photos, and if you get a chance to check out our bulletin board in person, it is near my office in front of Ms. Nute's room.  

Parent Expert Presentation: Drug & Alcohol Impact on Teens with Silvia Martins
Friday, April 20th 2:00 - 2:50 pm.
Dr. Martins is a psychiatrist and psychiatric epidemiologist, maintains a faculty position at Columbia University, and she is the parent of a third grader here at AC. She is an expert on depression, anxiety, drug use and smartphone addiction in adolescents. She has kindly offered her time for this parent organized event to meet with MS and HS parents to listen to and discuss your concerns. All high school and middle school parents are invited to her presentation and discussion.

Reminder: Student Absences
If your child will miss two or more days of school, for any reason, s/he must obtain a Pre-Arranged Absence form from the MS Office. The student takes this form to all teachers to discuss homework obligations, and then the form is signed by the MS Principal. Additionally, parents should call the MS Office as far in advance as possible to report these types of absences. Thank you.

I look forward to seeing you on Saturday, April 21, for International Festival. This is the largest community event hosted at AC during the school year. It is not to be missed!

With kind regards,
Sheryl

Sheryl Gruber
Middle School Principal

sgruber@cotpaxi.k12.ec
(593-2) 382-3270 ext. 2001

"We are responsible for being informed global citizens who understand and affect positive change."

 

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Elementary News

ES

 

This weekend, a group of elementary teachers engaged in a powerful conversation about the role of teachers and schools in developing opportunities for values of equity, a sense of responsibility within the world… Harold Gothson (Co-founder of the Reggio Emilia Institute in Stockholm and Board member of the Lori Malaguzzi Center in Italy), through a Reggio Emilia inspired lense, invited us to reflect on our practice with the image of the child in the context of society.  

We are gearing up for our celebration of community through diversity!   Student voices are powerful and as we continue to strive to empower all our students, we are  I invite you to watch this student-driven video with a call to action. A great example of student leadership and voice!

During our last Parent Representative meeting, we shared how we structure meals and the different roles that our children have as part of our Kids’ Cafe program.  We invite you to speak with your children about the importance of food and nutrition and encourage them to have roles at home that are connected with eating.  Setting the table, being a risk-taker when trying new foods, taking turns to design balanced menus, setting aside devices when eating, establishing family traditions around meals, including conversations about the origin of foods and recipes from around the world… all these are possibilities to foster positive attitudes about the way that we eat together!

Save the date - May 8- ART EXHIBIT.  We will hold an Art Exhibit in the early evening.  Please stay tuned for details, and mark your calendars!

Paola de Pereira
ES Principal

 

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High School News

HS

 

Please stop by the HS Office Learning Commons next week to enjoy our IB Art Exhibition; lots of beautiful work by our Senior students on display!

Enjoy CAISSA this Thursday and Friday and best of luck to our teams!

IB Corner
Final IB and AC exams schedule for the class of 2018 can be consulted here.

The last day of class for students taking IB exams is Throwback Thursday on April 26th. However, students are encouraged to come to school on Friday to review with their teachers.

Students not taking any IB exams and therefore taking all Final AC exams will need to remain in class until May 4th.

College Counseling Corner
12th Grade Parents, I will look forward to seeing you at a very important presentation on Thursday, April 12th, at 8am, in the Auditorium.  Our talk will be focused on the great transition that awaits you as parents, and your child as a student.  We will also spend time talking about how your student will acquire their student visa.  Any questions?  Don’t hesitate to reach out to me at lwasser@cotopaxi.k12.ec.  I will look forward to seeing you on Thursday.  

11th Grade Parents, the first day your son or daughter can register for the October 6, 2018 SAT, is April 17th.  Please ensure that your son or daughter registers for this October SAT is they are applying to US and select Canadian schools.  This is the next SAT your student can register for, and the last SAT offered before most Early Action Deadlines in the United States.

Cougar’s Corner
After an easy week on the Athletics front, this week we will be moving ahead with QISSA and hosting the International CAISSA Tournament. The tournament takes place from April 12 to April 14 and will showcase our Varsity and JV Girls Basketball and Boys Soccer teams playing alongside teams from CIS from the Cayman Islands, ISPS from Trinidad and CMS from Dominican Republic. The schedule of games is posted.

Garth Wyncoll
HS Principal

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Conferences are Coming!

MS

 

PTSA Bingo was the place to be on Friday night! I look forward to hearing the final total for service funds raised, but we can anticipate good numbers as it was a full house! A big thank you to the PTSA for organizing this annual fundraising event and to everyone who attended!
 
Conferences
Our final MS Conference session of the school year will be on Tuesday, April 17. These parent/student/teacher conferences are intended to allow time for you to meet with each of your child’s teachers. Similar to the November conferences, teachers are available for brief conversations about your child’s learning. The best conversations will occur if your child is also present to participate in the discussion. Different from the November conferences, the location will be in teacher classrooms. Your first stop will be to your child’s mentor teacher to collect the Progress Report, and then you may visit any of the teachers. Teachers will be in their classrooms, with the exception of “specialist” teachers, and cross-divisional teachers, who will be in the Library.

Conference time is 7:45am - 3:45pm, with lunch from 12:30 - 1:30. You do not need to schedule appointments. I look forward to seeing you at AC on April 17.

Reminder: Student Absences
If your child will miss two or more days of school, for any reason, s/he must obtain a Pre-Arranged Absence form from the MS Office. The student takes this form to all teachers to discuss homework obligations, and then the form is signed by the MS Principal. Additionally, parents should call the MS Office as far in advance as possible to report these types of absences. Thank you.

Counselor’s Corner
Parent Expert Presentation: Drug & Alcohol Impact on Teens with Silvia Martins
Friday, April 20th 2:00 - 2:50 pm.

Dr. Martins is a psychiatrist and psychiatric epidemiologist, maintains a faculty position at Columbia University, and she is the parent of a third grader here at AC. She is an expert on depression, anxiety, drug use and smartphone addiction in adolescents. She has kindly offered her time for this parent organized event to meet with MS and HS parents to listen to and discuss your concerns. All high school and middle school parents are invited to her presentation and discussion.
 
This week in Cougar Time mentor groups had a lesson (view the lesson here) and lively discussions about gender roles and stereotypes. Middle school is a key time prior to puberty and high school when gender stereotypes are becoming more cemented and impacting future decisions such as subject and extra-curricular choices. Below you can find some conversation starters to explore with your adolescents:

  • The idea that gender stereotypes do exist and can be subtle
  • Where these messages come from
  • Jobs and roles for women and men both inside and outside the home: that these roles and personal decisions are not good or bad, but rather how stereotypes can reinforce or limit these options
  • Cultural expectations about feminine or masculine fashion, activities, and behavior
  • How gendered expectations have changed over-time (i.e. their generation compared with previous generations). One example of this is illustrated by this International Journal of Science article

With kind regards,
Sheryl

Sheryl Gruber
Middle School Principal
sgruber@cotopaxi.k12.ec
(593-2) 382-3270 ext. 2001

"We are responsible for being informed global citizens who understand and affect positive change."

 

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High School News

HS

Welcome back from the Spring Holiday. I hope you all enjoyed this special time of year here in Ecuador.
    
A few aspiring leaders ran for the office of President and Vice-President for the HS Associated Student Body on Monday. Congratulations to each contender for your fine speech and positive attitude to own our student experience. Well done!
    
Counseling Corner
We have a number of exciting opportunities and events coming up in April.
Baby Think it Over: Our teen-pregnancy prevention program will take place the week of April 16 - 20th, with a final prevention presentation on Monday April 23rd. This program is conducted each year with our entire 10th grade. For more information check out the LearningBac blog post in English and in Spanish.
10th grade parents are invited to a Baby, Think it Over information session on Thursday April 12th at 6:00pm in the Auditorium.

Parent Expert Presentation: Drug & Alcohol Impact on Teens with Silvia Martins
Friday, April 20th 2:00 - 2:50 pm
Dr. Martins is a psychiatrist and psychiatric epidemiologist, maintains a faculty position at Columbia University, and she is the parent of a third grader here at AC. She is an expert on depression, anxiety, drug use and smartphone addiction in adolescents.  All high school and middle school parents are invited to her presentation and discussion.

College Counseling Corner
12th Grade Parents: Please attend our very important parent meeting on April 12th at 8am. There we will discuss important subjects such as how to obtain a study visa as well as how to handle “letting go” of your little girl or boy who is now about to study in another country for university.
By April 1st, your son or daughter should have received a majority of their responses from universities.  If your son or daughter intends to study in the United States, you must make a deposit and decision by May 1st.  Decision time has come - good luck!
On Tuesday, Marquette University in Milwaukee, Wisconsin will be visiting us at lunch.  On Thursday, EHL (Ecole hoteliere de Lausanne) will be visiting us as well. 
Finally, 11th Grade Parents.  In order to take the SAT on May 5th, your son or daughter must register by April 6th.  

Cougar’s Corner
No games this week, practices run on regular days.

Garth Wyncoll
HS Principal

 

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Social Media, Uniforms, and Conferences

MS

 

After a restful long weekend break, we are excited to return to life in the AC Middle School!
 
Uniforms
Thank you to parents who ensure that your children wear the AC uniform each day. In order to encourage all students to wear uniforms, we will take a two-pronged approach for the rest of the school year. Students who do not wear the uniform on a given day will spend 5 minutes with their teacher at the beginning of lunch. All students who wear the uniform every day from April 2 until the end of the school year will receive a reward. Students received this information at our March 26 assembly, and it is also posted in the Student Bulletin on Edmodo. AC uniforms are required Monday - Thursday. Fridays are “free dress,” within the general dress code expectations.

Conferences
Our final MS Conference session of the school year will be on Tuesday, April 17. These parent/student/teacher conferences are intended to allow time for you to meet with each of your child’s teachers. Similar to the November conferences, teachers are available for brief conversations about your child’s learning. The best conversations will occur if your child is also present to participate in the discussion. Different from the November conferences, the location will be in teacher classrooms. Your first stop will be to your child’s mentor teacher to collect the Progress Report, and then you may visit any of the teachers. Conference time is 7:45am - 3:45pm, with lunch from 12:30 - 1:30. You do not need to schedule appointments. I look forward to seeing you at AC on April 17.

Counselor’s Corner - Social Media and Self Image
Last week’s Cougar Time included a lesson and lively discussions in mentor groups regarding social media & self-image. Social Media has its many advantages but for adolescents living in the age of selfies, self-worth and self-image have become more impacted than ever. With snapchat filters teens can cover up pimples, whiten teeth and even contour their facial features to look slimmer with the swipe of a finger, curating a new image of themselves to post to the social media world. The idea of what is real and what is fake becomes blurred. A simple “like” of their photo is actually not so simple,  and teens end up feeling ranked, judged and comparing themselves more than ever to others. Even as adults we may find this happening for us as we peruse our Facebook account. However, for adolescents going through a time when peer opinion and development of identity are at their height, these have significantly different effects.
 
So what can parents do? Ask your kids their opinion of the ways people modify their own appearance online. Get them to think about: Why do people do it? What do they gain, and from whom? Who decides what is beautiful? How do they feel before and after posting a picture of themselves? Most importantly, normalize these thoughts and questions for them, and allow them to become aware of their own responses. Sometimes just naming a feeling as normal can make a teen feel less alone.
 
I encourage you to read this article by Common Sense Media on how social media has become a toxic mirror for adolescents. At the end of the article are two links to tips for talking about social media and body image with your daughters and/or your sons.

I hope to see you at the PTSA Bingo Night on Friday! This fun community event provides important service funds to student projects and is a great way to stay connected with AC families!

With kind regards,
Sheryl

Sheryl Gruber
Middle School Principal
sgruber@cotopaxi.k12.ec
(593-2) 382-3270 ext. 2001

"We are responsible for being informed global citizens who understand and affect positive change."

 

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