Issue 2 - 28th August 2020
First week back and Flourishing!
Dear Parents and Guardians,
I would like to thank the entire BPS community for ensuring that the beginning of the academic year has been a resounding success. It has been wonderful seeing your children back on campus, even more so seeing all with a smile on their face.
During the first week, students have been getting back into the 'swing of things' with teachers going over routines, this is a fundamental part of ensuring all are settled. We are a section that believes all children need to be comfortable and happy, an essential element for all children, an environment conducive for all to flourish.
All children are currently embarking on a three-week mini topic called 'All About Me.' This is in place as we value wellbeing, a foundation for student success. During this period, children have opportunities to further cement friendships, deepen understanding of our values, and develop a greater understanding of safeguarding through our Speak Out Stay Safe modules.
As you scroll through this week's newsletter, you will have access to our First Assembly of the year, and within the short film, you will be introduced to our Mascot - a role model for all! As a team, we wanted to set the tone for our students, and want to further reassure you that we will continue to work on all aspects of your children's development, as we firmly believe that every child matters!
Parent workshops - by Mr Aidan Stallwood
Here is the zoom invitation:
Topic: BPS Strategic Plan for Parents
Time: Sep 3, 2020 08:15 AM Taipei
Join Zoom Meeting
Meeting ID: 983 9650 1322
New Family Orientation - by Ms Gillian Smith
We are excited to get to know families new to TES by welcoming them to a year group orientation. These are taking place between now and September 11th. They are a fantastic opportunity for you to partner with us and also meet other families new to the school. You will also meet the year group team, explore the new learning environment, and also have your questions answered. We hope to see you there!
Safeguarding - by Mrs Kay Chaeter
What a great start to the term at BPS. All of our staff completed an introduction/refresher training on safeguarding at TES. We were able to spend time to learn about how best to keep the students safe, how the global pandemic has impacted mental health, and how to empower them to make good choices. Our teaching assistants completed a more in-depth training on child protection issues and shared good practice examples to help them identify and report. I am really looking forward to hosting some safeguarding workshops later this year.
A Sneak Preview: Exciting English Literacy Developments - by Mr Michael Norris
Hello Parents and Guardians. We trust you have had a wonderful Summer. It is lovely to see all our children back, getting into their routines and taking full advantage of exciting learning opportunities .
I would like to share with you some positive developments around our English curriculum:
1. Change of Name:We will no longer be referring to English as a separate learning area. Since English core skills (reading and writing) are applied in all curriculum learning areas, we will use the more appropriate term, Literacy.
2. New Take-Home Readers: In past years, your child (where appropriate) brought home a colour banded home reader. This book was based on their independent reading level and formed part of their daily home reading. We are pleased to announce that we have purchased a range of high quality Oxford Reading Tree (ORT) books for home reading use. They have just arrived and will be ready for roll-out within the next two weeks or so. You will notice that the ORT readers have a Book Band and Level on the back. Children will be assigned an appropriate independent home reader at the correct level. The ORT reading chart below indicates the levels and corresponding Book Band colours.
Until such time as our ORT Home Readers are ready, we will continue to use our current Home Readers. Also please be aware that most children in Year 5 and 6 are free readers and their take home books will be sourced from our school library.
Whichever reading book your child brings home, we ask that you play an active role in taking an interest in what they read. Reading letters, which will guide you as to how to support reading at home, will soon be sent to you via your child’s classroom teacher.
3. Handwriting: There is a renewed refocus on handwriting. In Y1 and Y2, this will be taught alongside letter recognition embedded within the Read Write Inc phonics programme. In years 3 to 6, handwriting will be taught discretely. We will soon be receiving the fantastic Nelson Handwriting scheme resources to support this.
Happy reading and writing!
Bilingual Article in Centered on Taipei - by Ms Gillian Smith
We are excited to share the most recent edition of Centered on Taipei. On page 8 you will find an article ‘Bilingual is Better’ written by Eowyn Crisfield, a consultant that works closely with TES. This article is valuable reading as she challenges a number of language myths. While Eowyn’s article gives you the reasons to embark on a dual language journey for your child, below you will find the unique BPS dual language journey.
To see more, please click the button below. Thank you
Colour My Heart with Peace Winner! - by Mr Eamonn O' Callaghan
Congratulations to Faye in B5.2. Her award winning art work will be featured in the 'Colour My Heart with Peace' online exhibition which will be hosted from August 24th to September 6th through the Facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/2020dmz ).
The exhibition organisers state that the purpose of this project is to foster the hope of peace among our youth through cultivating their talents in the field of visual arts, encouraging self-expression around the theme that is Colour My Heart with Peace.
Important Reminder by Mr Luke Chaeter
Morning Drop Off (Traffic)
Please be reminded that vehicles are not to park on the Yellow line directly outside the main entrance when dropping children to school in the morning. This is specifically a 'drop off zone.'
Traffic flow is currently being monitored, parked vehicles will be asked to move, persistent offenders will be reported.
First Week of School
On Thursday the PTA held its Information Morning on Zoom where many parents met virtually to find out what the PTA is about and how one can take part. Mr Chaeter and Mr Stallwood were present to discuss, amongst other things, children’s responses to the new lunch menu (positive!), issues with traffic, as well as many of the parent workshops planned for this academic year. Mr Gamble also came to introduce the 1:1 programme which the PTA helped to fund last year. For those of you who couldn’t make it but would like more information on the PTA - what we do, who we are, how you can take part - please follow the link below to the presentation slides.
We are hosting a casual morning coffee next Wednesday at 8:30 at Lutetia. Come and meet other parents, chat with active PTA members, ask questions. If you are new to Taipei, or simply would like to explore more, you might be interested in a Ubike tour of Tianmu led by our very own Ronelle Van Eyk following the coffee morning.
If you are thinking about becoming a class rep, you are more than welcome to come and chat to us about it too. The deadline for application is 4 September. It is a rewarding role that allows you to feel the pulse of what’s happening in the classroom. The PTA also offers a lot of support to class reps if this is your first time.
Looking forward to meeting you next Wednesday!