The Tiger, 3rd June, 2022
This is the last edition of The Tiger for this academic year. It has been a year of transition for our community whilst navigating the challenges of the pandemic.
I would like to thank our entire Stonehill community for completing this difficult and challenging year. COVID-19 continues to be contagious as cases escalate. Thankfully, this week, our cases at School have been minimal.
This week, our Primary School, had brilliant transition ceremonies for students moving up in the next academic year. Thank you to our faculty and staff who have been welcoming.
For those families who are departing Stonehill and transitioning to new schools, we wish you the very best. It is my hope that your children will always remember our close-knit Stonehill community. For our returning families, we are very excited about next year. We look forward to starting our school year with on-campus learning.
For those teachers leaving us, I wish you the best. I thank you for your dedication and commitment during your time at Stonehill. I look forward to welcoming our new teachers joining us in both, Primary and Secondary schools. The passion and dedication that our teachers bring create an effective and positive learning environment for our students.
As a reminder, Boarding Orientation for new students is scheduled for the 3rd of August. New Student Orientation for Primary and Secondary school will be held on the 4th of August and the first day of school for all students is on the 5th of August 2022.
Stay safe and healthy. Wishing you all a refreshing break!
Dr. Brian Brumsickle
Head of School
Stonehill Hosts a Memorable Graduation On Campus
Stonehill hosted a memorable graduation ceremony for the graduating Class of 2022 on May 21st. This year, after three years, the glitzy ceremony was held on campus bringing together the Stonehill community to celebrate the students and their accomplishments. It was an evening of joy, relief and tears for the graduating Class of 2022. As the students envisioned their future and pondered on the past years spent at Stonehill, parents were filled with feelings of excitement, pride, and anticipation.
Mr.Jitu Virwani, Founder, Stonehill International School and Chairman & MD, Embassy Group addressed the graduates with an inspirational message. Guest speakers, Stonehill Alumni, Neil Sairam and Clotilde De Napoli’s messages were filled with advice and a reminder of Stonehill’s close knit community. The evening was filled with elation and sadness when the two Valedictorians, Anushka Singh and Kalidas Vinod recollected their years at Stonehill.
100% of the graduating class have received admission offers and are now headed to prestigious universities from over eighteen countries across North America, Asia, Europe and Australia. They have opted for diverse areas of study ranging from Engineering, Biosciences, Literature, Management, Economics, Global Public Health, Diplomacy and Hospitality to name a few.
84% of the students received offers from the world’s top 100 universities. The class of forty-seven students received scholarships worth over $ 2.36 Million (USD).
Congratulations to the Class of 2022 for their achievements. It has been another challenging year, but they have made the best of it. They have taken advantage of the many opportunities to learn and grow this year. We look forward to the promise that they will bring to themselves and to the world in the future.
Sports at SIS
Looking back at the Spring events
The Track and Field team travelled to Neev Academy on the 23rd of April and participated in the inaugural Track and Field meet for the Bangalore Activities and Athletics Schools Conference (BAASC). Outstanding performances were put on show by Samara, M3 (1 Gold - 100m, 2 Silvers - Long Jump, 4x100m Relay) Kate, M3 (1 Gold-Shot Put, 1 Silver - 4x100m Relay), Fleur, M2 (2 Silvers - 100m, 4x100m Relay ), Maia, M1 (2 Silvers - 400m, 4x100m Relay), Thara, M3 (1 Bronze - 100m), Shaayan, M2 (2 Silver - 100m, 200m, 1 Bronze - 4x100m Relay), Rickard, M3 (1 Bronze - 4x100m Relay), Vedanth, M3 (1 Bronze - 4x100m Relay), and Milo, M3 (1 Bronze - 4x100m Relay).
On the 25th of April, a dual school swimming jamboree was held between Canadian International School (CIS) and Stonehill International School. There was no direct competition as the number of swimmers was low for both the schools. Still, the swimmers lined up and participated with a motivation to achieve personal bests rather than to gain medals. The day was a positive experience and ended with a fun relay event. We'd like to thank the swimmers who participated in this event: Hannah, M1, Sana, M1, Akshaan, M1, Clement, M2 and Evan, M2.
On the 30th of April, we sent two boys' teams and one girls' team to compete in the middle school Football Championships at CIS. Both the boys' teams started off the hot day well with convincing victories over the host school, CIS, but finished in third place as the heat drained the energy from the team. The girls' recognised the challenge as first time players against these schools who had more experience. Their results improved as the day progressed and were very competitive by the end.
Looking forward to the Fall events
We are now taking sign ups for all the sport teams for next year's BAASC conference. Signups are being taken on the SchoolsBuddy Portal, where the eligible teams will show up. There will be a brief description of the season format and practice schedule. At this point, all are welcome and encouraged to sign up so that we can get an estimate of the numbers and coaching needs for the upcoming seasons.
In addition to playing on a sports team, we are also offering CAS opportunities in the areas of sports media, coaching, and service. For more information please see the Google Presentation.
Finally, for Secondary students who are interested in finding out more about the Sport Industry, we have partnered with the Centre For Sports Excellence (CSE) to provide internships in sports physiotherapy and nutrition, sports psychology, sports coaching, and sports management. For anyone interested in this please email Mr. Bertken at firstname.lastname@example.org for information on the interview process.
Activities at SIS
Thank you to the P4-D2 students and parents who responded to the 2022 Spring Activities survey. Although not a complete sample size, the respondents marked that 78.6% of the students felt satisfied to extremely satisfied with the value of the activities as presented this Spring. 100% felt satisfied to extremely satisfied with the communication from the Activities Department. They are also extremely satisfied with the ease and efficiency of the new management software - SchoolsBuddy. This last Spring activities were hastily put together as we were uncertain due to COVID restrictions.
We are currently working with groups of students and faculty in developing activities for next year to fit within the new ASA curriculum:
There would be three categories of activities:
- Legacy - school initiated activities like STUCO MUN, STEM, etc
- Co-Curricular - student initiated activities like GSA, Girl Up, Fun With Physics, Honey Bee, etc.
- Extra-Curricular- vendor initiated sports clinics, etc.
There will be three Activity Seasons that will run concurrently with the Sport Seasons. This provides a more condensed and focussed time frame and also allows students to explore more activities.
Every activity will have a "deliverable" at the end of the season, in other words they will be working toward the completion of at least one project where they have taken action. An example would be a music group putting together a set to be performed, or a science club producing a competition. At the beginning of the activity season, each group will have to declare what it is they will achieve at the end of the season.
Next year at the beginning of the semester, each activity will present itself at an "Activity Showcase" where the students will have the opportunity to find out more about the activities. Following this we will run out the signups and trial periods - after which the students will not be allowed to make changes.
Looking forward to a new start in the new academic year! Go Tigers!
Whole School Sports and Activities Coordinator
Our P4 through to P8 students completed the Measurement for Academic Progress (MAP) assessments in Mathematics, Reading and Language (P6 to P8) early in May. The results were surprisingly better than expected having spent so much time online during the high peaks of the pandemic. Growth over time at a systems-wide level saw a positive growth in all grades in all the three assessments. It was as high as 13.5% and as low as 1.3% but the growth is something to be celebrated.
Sadly, the summer session does not provide us with district-wide norms - something we were unaware of and something we have used in the past to measure grade-level expectations. However, at a systems-wide level we collated, synthesised and made learning decisions using the MEAN scores of our students. We compared grade level MEAN outcomes from the last time we completed the assessment. We made curriculum decisions based on the strengths and areas that need strengthening based on the MEAN data.
This week, the teachers interrogated their grade and class results. They looked at individual results as well as grade-wide results. They compared the information they have collected on student learning and compared it to the student’s MAP scores. They discussed whether MAP was an accurate account of that student's learning. If so, no further investigation was necessary and if not, further investigation was planned. They made an action plan for their grade-level to utilise in the new academic year.
This action plan will focus on learning and teaching in the new academic year.
However, it is pertinent to note, we do not teach to this assessment and our curriculum is different to the assessment. We use it as a cross-referencing tool. It is just one piece of data amongst a plethora of data that is collected and used in monitoring student learning.
I am in the process of mapping individual students who have been with us over time. This longitudinal information will follow them into secondary school. What I am recognising at this time is that:
All students have made progress.
Not all the tests students have completed have data due to the nature of the test. For example, if a child guesses, the database shuts the assessment down and no result is recorded.
Not all students have results for all tests due to absenteeism/internet connection.
Not to be deterred, I still think this data will be useful in the long term. It can be used to show growth over time whether that is at grade level, below or beyond the grade level.
We generally complete the MAP assessments in September and March. This year was an unusual year - next year we are hoping for normalcy, getting back to our regular schedule and having grade-level norms.
Goodbye and Happy Holidays!
Goodbye to all of our leaving families. We have enjoyed working with you. We wish you well in your new adventures. Be well, and go safely. All the best! To our returning families - Happy holidays! We wish you safe and happy travels. See you in August!
With best wishes,
Primary School Principal
and the Primary Team
Helpful Hints for Supporting Children’s Social and Emotional Learning Over Summer
Summer break is finally here (almost)! And while that means family time, a well-deserved getaway, or even more time to catch up with friends outside school, it is also the perfect time for your child to continue building their social and emotional skills. It does not require sending them off to summer camp or getting them to complete worksheets. Personal, social, and emotional learning can be integrated in your child’s everyday life. Here are five ways to go about it:
Create a cosy corner for you and your child to read together. Have them read their favourites, but also a valuable addition to their home library could be SEL books related to managing emotions, turn taking, inclusiveness, self-confidence, etc. Children are able to identify with different characters, make connections, and even practice some of the skills they learn from these books. This is a perfect teaching opportunity for you. Looking for book suggestions? Check out this website.
No, your child does not necessarily have to sit still and meditate. How about going on a mindfulness walk together, instead? Encourage them to take the time to see, hear, smell, and feel what is around them. This will help them feel grounded. You could also try this rainbow walk. If your child is easily anxious or overwhelmed, mindfulness activities must be your go-to this vacation.
If you’re trying to help your child be more responsible and caring, get them to try their hand at gardening. Apart from taking ownership, your child will also have the opportunity to problem-solve along the way. Gardening can be highly therapeutic and you can get started with as little as growing one plant!
Cook or Bake
Does your child struggle with listening to instructions, following directions, or collaborating with others? Have them bake or cook with you. Teamwork sure makes the dream work! And there’s something delicious to indulge in at the end!
You children are bound to miss their school friends over the break so maybe you could have some of them over for a playdate or invite their neighbourhood friends. While the children interact and play together, they will build on their social skills and will have ample opportunities to practice Kelso’s choices to resolve conflicts among them.
Now that we’ve reached another June, it’s time to set down in writing our hopes and dreams for the coming academic year. With the recent increase in covid cases on campus, it’s been an annoying end to the year, but at least we were able to spend far more time on campus in 2021-2022 than we were in 2020-2021. Let’s remain eternally optimistic that 2022-2023 will be a ‘normal’ school year, which means…
- We should see the return of Grade Level trips. Those of you who joined School in the past two years would not have experienced our February trips, in which different grade levels visit different areas of India. They are always highly memorable experiences for the students.
- We should also see the return of BAASC sports competitions. We managed to attend a Track and Field Meet this year and had a few football matches with Canadian International School (CIS), but there are so many more opportunities for competitive play with the other schools in north Bangalore. The calendar is set for the new year and we should have events spaced out throughout the whole year.
- It’s time to put on a show! Our drama teachers are currently looking at theatres in the city so that the Secondary School can put on a wonderful drama production next year for the whole community.
- We can hope to enjoy PTA events, the Diwali party, and other social gatherings. It was great to be able to host graduation at School a few weeks ago and I have a vague memory of well-attended social events during my first year here before School had to close. I’m looking forward to seeing the Stonehill campus become the social hub of our community again next year.
- There should be plenty of new students and families joining us. The Secondary School should be fairly full next year with around 350 students in total. Boarding numbers are likely to be higher than ever before, all of which suggests Stonehill is a good place to be for our students.
- There should be opportunities for our students to get out into the community to engage in meaningful service projects. It’s always important for international school students to get out of their comfortable bubble and see the challenges that people in local communities face.
- We know that we can deliver learning experiences in a virtual environment if necessary and some students need to benefit from such a flexible approach from time to time. However, my feeling is that the ‘default’, preferred mode of learning for (almost) everybody still needs to be in a social setting on a school campus. Schools are community institutions and student learning does not take place in isolation.
Once again, it’s been an honour to serve the Stonehill Secondary School community this year. I have thoroughly enjoyed working with your children and the strong level of parental support for all our initiatives is always appreciated.
I hope you all enjoy the summer and I look forward to seeing everybody in August.
Secondary School Principal
MYP Visual Arts
During the past week the secondary Visual Arts students in M1 - M5 have been setting up displays of their work and it has been an evolving process. The students were allocated space to display work and were provided with materials and tools in order to facilitate the displays. Most of the students have mentioned that productivity leads to greater levels of creativity. The students in M4 and M5 have been very selective when curating their work. They wanted to project their artistic identity in a very individualised manner.
The students did additional work during their free time to ensure a bigger collection of work for their displays. The students in M1 and M2 wanted more of a group identity. The M3 students wanted to showcase their personal identity as they were more interested in showing their creative fluidity by displaying work that had been done in a range of techniques.
Well done to our secondary Visual Arts students! We hope that they will continue to engage in the Arts during the holidays by visiting museums and galleries.
Happy summer holidays to everyone!
Visual Arts Teacher
It is hard to believe how quickly the school year has passed! In the past few weeks the science classrooms were bustling with activities. The students were getting ready for their end of semester assessments and teachers were busy training them for it.
The M4 students are getting ready to ‘catch some waves’. We are not talking about the ones at the beach, they are learning about heat, light and sound waves. The students used their knowledge of reflection and refraction of waves to create working models of periscopes and projectors. Perfect integration of science and technology!
The M2 students have been investigating Motion and Newton’s Laws of Motion. This includes measuring the speed of whirly birds, making and launching rockets and racing balloon rockets in the classroom.
As part of their final unit on how organisms survive, the M5 students have been studying the interaction between the nervous and hormonal systems in mammals to respond to the world around them. This investigation titled “Ruler Reflex Inquiry” tested individual response time to reflexes. The students went on to study about the types of neurons that were involved in a simple reflex action and the role of the brain and spinal cord in the same.
HoD Science, MYP & DP Physics
The Impact of a Silent Short Film
LAZINESS, Sohee, M5, English B
English B taught me the importance of using a plot and effects to encourage seamless communication between the film’s author and their audience. I hope my silent short film inspires you to have good habits to take care of your daily routine. Watch my film and together, we can create the elements that will make the changes we want in this world!
Why does film matter?
I deliberately created an educational video with the meaning of “being well-organised.” I also wanted to communicate the importance of the structure of a genre; a short silent film.
Here's the script:
At the beginning of the unit, we were introduced to a range of short films that were prevailing in their popularity, in order to discern what kinds of themes most intrigued the population. We also dissected these to get a sense of what components and effects captured the audience’s attention. As no dialogue is used in silent short films, I had to consider thoroughly in maximising certain effects to preserve good communication towards the audience for their comprehension.
Further, I wanted to contain a message that many may consider trivial, but would also be indeed beneficial in our daily lives once we learn it. As COVID-19 has altered our routines and simply transformed our attitudes, including generating several bad habits, the theme of my short silent film was about being lazy. I envisaged a narrative that I felt we could all relate to: someone who delays doing their chores and prefers to be lazy. This is certainly a problematic circumstance that may arise in real life.
After deciding upon my theme, I focused on the plot, so I divided it into sections including an introduction (to provide background to the character and to set a context), climax (to highlight a problem that needed to be resolved), and resolution (to realise a lesson). At the beginning, I presented a disorganised room due to the problem of laziness, a trivial but bad habit which may cause several issues. To set up the climax of my short silent film, I presented a moral concern for the protagonist who lost something important because of their laziness in keeping their room messy. And for the resolution…. well, you will just have to watch my film to find out.
During my planning, I had to contemplate the filming effects including the background music, facial expressions, and body actions, which would prominently aid in better understanding for viewers. Consequently, by adding these effects, I was able to express proper atmospheres of each specific scene. Most importantly, I deliberately overreacted using my facial expressions and body actions in accordance with the situation. These factors that I took into account have profoundly supported the creation of the ideal silent short film that I imagined.
Kassandra Rieck, English B
Another school year draws to a close. It seems like time has gone by so fast. They say time flies when you are having fun. I guess it’s true.
Evaluating what we have achieved as a boarding community over this last semester is essential for developing our boarding programme for the next academic year.
While we have much to celebrate and be proud of, embracing a culture of continuous improvement means we need to reflect critically, continue the work we have begun, as well as identify new areas for development and advancement. So, there will be plenty for us to do when we return for the new academic year.
During the first week of May, we sent out the cafeteria survey. I would like to thank those of you who took time to share your feedback. I also appreciate your suggestions for improvement. The leadership team will be reviewing the survey this week.
Our sixteen graduates from boarding move on to face new events, adventures and challenges. We are so proud of their amazing college acceptances, scholarship offers and wish them all luck and success.
I sincerely thank the entire Boarding team and express my deep appreciation for their hard work. Thank you to the medical team, support staff, catering department, maintenance, housekeeping and security for keeping our students safe, healthy and happy.
Thank you to our parents, for your continued support and patience this year. It is only by working in partnership with you that we were able to support your children to achieve the best.
Thank you to our students, for “hanging in there“ and being able to adapt and adjust as we needed and showing everyone that ultimately, the Stonehill Boarding community is strong and resilient.
With the steady growth in the enrolment in boarding for 2022-23 academic year, we all eagerly await to see what the new boarding students will bring to the community.
Don’t forget you can follow our Twitter page @BoardingSIS to keep up-to-date with regular news and updates from the boarding houses.
Up-to-date contact information
In a world of ever changing mobile numbers and email addresses, it is vital that we have up-to-date information should we need to contact you urgently. If you have changed address, mobile numbers or email ID and haven’t updated us, please email email@example.com as soon as possible.
Have a relaxing and enjoyable summer holiday and we look forward to welcoming the new and returning boarding students on Thursday, 4th August.
With best wishes,