CDS Middle School

Director's Newsletter

February 2nd, 2018

Benjamin Scoville, Director
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From the Director

Dear CDS Community,

This week our students showed terrific effort while sitting for MAP Growth Tests in Reading, Math, and Language Usage. It's not easy for middle school students to dedicate their full attention and focus to an exam that doesn't directly impact their grade. I'm so proud of our kids for rising to the challenge and doing their best work. It's clear that they have a sincere desire to grow and develop academically, and they are excited to see evidence of their own progress.

In other news, this week saw the final round of the Geography Bee during C.C. time on Wednesday. Also on Wednesday, the Student Council announced the winners of this year's Winter Writing Contest during SCBS News. On Thursday Ms. Van Liew and four CDS MS students participated enthusiastically in the KIMEA Honor Band Festival at Seoul Foreign School.

Next week, 32 CDS students will participate in the Korean Writing Competition and our 8th graders will enjoy a field trip to the Incheon High School Science Museum (인천광역시교육과학연구원 -인천학생과학관).

Students who missed MAP test(s) due to illness will have the opportunity to take them next week. Students who were present but unable to finish any of their MAP exams this week will also have a chance to finish them during the week ahead.

Have a great weekend!

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Winter Writing Contest

While the turnout for this year's Winter Writing Contest was sparse, the quality of the winning pieces was fantastic. Students from every grade competed this year, and Mr. Cavasin and Mr. Menzel truly had a tough time deciding on the winners. The styles varied, and topics such as self-image, power, loyalty, ownership, and despair were tackled.

The English department would like to thank those students who put in the time and effort necessary to contribute to the Winter Writing Contest and offer their congratulations to this year's winners.

- Mr. Menzel & Mr. Cavasin

- Fiction -

1st Place

(8B) Joon-Gee (Ethan) Hong - "The History Essay"

2nd Place

(8A) Minjeong (Lucy) Seong - "‘New’ Man"

3rd Place

(6B) Hyunchae (Cindy) Shin - "Abnormal"

- Poetry -

1st Place

(8A) Minjeong (Lucy) Seong - "Alzheimer's Disease"

2nd Place

(8B) Juri (Ashley) Shimada - "I am Alright"

- Opinion -

1st Place

(6A) Taewon (Alex) Noh - "The Qualities of a Good Leader"

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KIMEA Honor Band Festival

As the season of KIMEA MS Honor Festivals continues, we can proudly smile that the Band Festival for 2018 is in the books! On Thursday, February 1, four CDS students loaded a bus for Seoul Foreign School to participate in the festival. The festival had three bands with approximately 90 students each, amounting to 250 students from various international schools. Representing CDS in the Blue Band were Henna Jeong (Clarinet), Yuna Kang (Clarinet), and Joon Jung (Trombone). Representing CDS in the Red Band was Alex Noh (Flute).

Prior to the festival, the students put in immense effort, focus, and persistence to learn the music. Apart from practicing at home, they also came in for extra help during Lab time. Two of our students have only been playing their instrument since the beginning of the year, so to have them participate truly reveals how hard they needed to work. As a teacher, I am very proud of their commitment and willingness to persevere even when playing the music was tricky.

On the day of the festival, the hard work continued, as the students had three, 1-hour rehearsals with the full band, plus an hour of sectionals (working with the same instrument). After practicing, the students put on an outstanding concert at 3:30pm. It was a joy to hear each band and see the groups perform at such a superior level.

For my (Ms. Van Liew) day, I was able to rehearse and direct the Red Band. I thoroughly enjoyed working with such a large group with full and balanced instrumentation.

To watch the performance, click the SFS Livestream Link Here. The performance times are as follows:

Blue Band starts at 11:30

Red Band starts at 31:20

Here are some thoughts from a couple students:


"Honor Band was a new and exciting experience for me. I learned many musical techniques and improved my clarinet playing. I hope I will be able to participate again in Honor Band next year!"


"Honor band was awesome! We got to do fun rehearsals, the teachers are kind, and it also made my musical skills better. The concert and the music were really cool. You can also make lots of friends there. Overall, it was a GREAT EXPERIENCE."

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Geography Bee Winners


Round 2 and the final round of the Geography Bee was a great success. Our competitors battled it out under the lights of Dalton Hall for who has supreme knowledge of world geography facts.

The questions came from general world knowledge that is useful and interesting to know. A good example is: "What is the longest river in the world?" In the end, we had three winners from 8th grade.

These winners were: (8A) Hyungmin Song (Dalton), (8B) Joon-Gee (Ethan) Hong (Pheonix) and Doohyun (Alex) Kim (Pheonix).

We had some non 8th graders who also did quite well which was very impressive! In the end, Dalton will take away 50 points and Pheonix 70pts!

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Dalton Cup Update

Good Evening CDS Family!

Term 3 Dalton Cup King's Court Dodge Ball regular season has just completed and we have some good match ups for the following weeks playoff matches.

Playing for 3rd & 4th place we have Phoenix vs Korea. We also have team Cheongna and Dalton playing for the top two spots. It's been a great season of Dalton Cup so far and it will be even a more exciting finish!!

-Mr. Monette
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Upcoming Events

2/5 - Korean Writing Competition

2/8 - 8th Grade Field Trip - Incheon High School Science Museum

2/12 - 2/16 - Lunar New Year Break

2/22 - Parent Information Session: Intro to Project Based Learning (PBL)

2/19 - 2/23 - Spirit Week

2/28 - End of Term 3