The year’s end is here. What a pleasure it has been to work with you children. Wishing each and every family a wonderful summer, and for those families not returning to UNIS, we wish you all the very best in your coming adventures.

I cannot finish the year without paying tribute to your children; the gifts they bring, the joy in their hearts, the compassion they show.  They are a tribute to you and to themselves. I have enjoyed working, playing and just being with them everyday. Oh the places they will go!

Thank you to all the families and friends who joined us in celebrating the end of Elementary learning for G5 students on Monday. The students were excited to receive their certificates from Dr Barder and to share their Trans-identity products with you. Here is a link to the photos from the G5 Certificate Assembly.

Here is a calendar we made to celebrate the summer, share some memories and get ready for the next big adventure. Zoom in on each day and why not give it a try.

The Aquatics Coordinator, Martin Hamilton created this clip of the Swim Relay Extravaganza for your viewing pleasure.

All the best and hoping to see you all again soon,






June 4 -8

On Monday we will celebrate your child’s successes as they have transitioned through Elementary School. Moving into MS is a milestone for students and for current and former teachers. We have had the pleasure of getting to see your child develop as a learner and as a person who has a greater understanding of the world around them.

Please join us in celebrating this time with certificate ceremony, morning tea (which our class parents are organising) and then listen to your child’s final assessment of the year, which involves describing how their trans-identity product displays the elements of identity and transition. You are welcome to join the students for an early lunch in the canteen if you wish before we depart for Ice Skating.

This week we worked on our projects, shared with our students their 30 minutes of fame in team building and interest based activities, explored area and capacity in Math and recounted our day in Middle School last Friday.

We really enjoyed the Relay Extravaganza. Thanks Coach Hamilton and the PE Department! What a fun way to cool down and enjoy a little bit of competitive fun.


Dress code for Monday’s Assembly Celebration is tidy-formal wear. Please note it is important that students have a change of clothes for their afternoon activity.

Your child received a field trip notice to attend an ice skating session after the Assembly Celebration, on the 11th of June. Please get the permission slips to me ASAP.

If your child is going to be absent from school, please ensure you contact the ES office to let them know.

The last day for your child is the14th of June @ 12:00 pm. 

May 28 – Jun 1

It has been another adventurous week in 5C. I have been enjoying getting to know all of the students better as they share pieces of their identity during an activity on their special day. With only two week to go, I continue to be amazed by all that makes them unique.

In Literacy, we have been continuing to write recounts. The students have each chosen an important transition that has impacted them and are recounting the events surrounding that time. It is interesting to see the events they value, the use of language and the changes they have undergone. We have switched genres and audience in reading. To finish the year we move from the depth of vocabulary used in Tuck Everlasting to the simplicity of language in Piggie and Gerald books. We will take into account the area of viewing and presenting when we share these tales with our buddies.

In Math we culminated Math May, where we have done a short math focus at the beginning of each morning. This week included; decimals, shape, fashion design and probability (not to mention a few songs mixed in). In class itself we examined measurement, looking more deeply as a class at area and perimeter and converting between centimeters and meters. With the information your children brought in as ‘homework’ we quickly investigated coordinate planes. Why not pull out your old Battleship games and ask your children about the connection?

In Unit of Inquiry students have been independently working on visually representing their identity and some of their transitions. It is interesting to see what they choose and how their personalities are showcased. We will share these with you on June 11.

We also went to Hanoi International School to check out their PYP Exhibition. They did a great job presenting, and we asked thoughtful questions that showed how much we have grown as thinkers and communicators.

Important Reminders:

May 21 – 25

As we continue to investigate the nature of the self through different forms of transitions, ways people change and how we adopt and adapt to new roles and responsibilities, fifth graders are making many discoveries! They have been learning more about biological changes from our school nurse, Ms. Susan, and the roles and responsibilities that they entail. Furthermore, they have been developing their understanding on how transitions work and their purposes. With this development, the fifth graders are reflecting and writing an ‘Advice to self: Personal Hygiene and Responsibility through Transitions.’


We are approaching the end of our class novel in both read with and read aloud form. It has been a challenge to juggle two texts but wonderful to watch students make comparisons as well as examine Identity and Transitions. We have begun to recount an important transition in writing, ensuring all the elements of a recount are present.

In math students have been following their own mathematical investigations. Anything from fractions to division to 3D shapes. They will present their findings to the class over the next couple weeks. We have also been taking part in teacher provided math centres, where students makes choice about the facets of measurement they will investigate.

Upcoming Dates:


May 14 -18

This week students took the MAP (Measures of Academic Progress) Test over three days, covering reading, math and language. While this test is only one measure of student academic achievement, it was nice to see the students so focussed on the task at hand.

As we continue our units on “identity” and “transitions”, students identified many types of transitions, from moving to maturity. They will begin to look more closely at the reproduction system tomorrow.

We have been enjoying two books in Literacy! Our class read aloud, Hello Universe and our whole class novel study, Tuck Everlasting. It has been wonderful to analyse all characters in terms of their identity and transitions they have encountered. In Math, we have examined our strengths as mathematicians and areas of growth. We have chosen our own areas of study and will present our findings to the class.

As we approach the end of the academic year and our time together as 5C we are also celebrating all of us. Each student has a day from now until the end of the year to showcase themselves and their identity. They also receive inspiring words from their classmates. It has been great to see the students share drawings, movies, games and language with the class. I look forward to what other students will present.

Finally, please put the G5 Celebration of Learning on your calendar for June 11. We will use this event as a way for students to showcase their changing identities through artifacts and presentations, as well as a way to say goodbye and provide closure on a wonderful year.


May 7 – 11

This week we introduced our last unit of the year on “transitions,” and we began our exploration with a visit to a Kindergarten classroom to help students realize some of the transitions they have already made as learners.

Next, we brainstormed other types of transitions and created a list that included physical, social and emotional changes. And yes, puberty was on the list! The following presentation slides give a brief overview of topics covered during the unit. Please attend the coffee morning to find out more. This information session takes place at 8:30 tomorrow in the library.

Now that Exhibition is over – although some groups are continuing their actions – we are back to a more normal schedule of math and literacy. In math this week, students learned about the different types of measurement through hands-on activities worked mathematically by reflecting on themselves as mathematician, solved a multi step, multi solution problem and set goals. In literacy, students learned to provide descriptive details into their “recount” writing. We used our own experiences and our Kindergarten experience to structure our writing.


Standardized MAP assessment on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday. Families can help students by ensuring that their children come to school rested with full stomachs.

Coffee Morning May 11, 2018 at 8:30 in the library.



May 2 – 4

Congratulation to our Grade 5 Students!

People are still talking about the wonderful PYP Exhibition that the G5 students presented last week! More than one of my colleagues said that it was the best PYPX ever, based on all of the actions that our students took and are still taking to help meet the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). It was especially inspiring to hear their ‘shout outs’ or compliments to each other the next day. We couldn’t be more proud.


This week is book week. We certainly are enjoying visiting readers, dressing up and celebrating with literary lunches.  Thanks for all of your support. On Friday there will be a book sale for students to purchase books at discounted prices. Books cost between 10 and 40 thousand VND.

As the year starts to wind down, we are starting our final units for all subjects. Our last unit of inquiry will be about “transitions,” physical, social and emotional. The focus of Math will continue to focus on number strategies with an additional focus on geometry. Students will investigate the various types of measurement through hands-on activities. In literacy, students will review “recount” writing and take reading assessments.

Today we also took a trip to the International School of Vietnam. Making connections and deepening understanding from peers is always beneficial! Our trip to ISV today was successful. Their Grade 5 students shared their PYPX learning with us. Our fifth graders were an interested audience who had an opportunity to engage in activities presented by other fifth graders, just like them! The students consolidated their understanding about sharing the planet, our responsibilities in the struggle to share finite resources with other living things.

A Message from Music

May 4th 2018

Dear Grade 5 Parents,

As we approach the end of this 2017/18 School Year, the time has come for all students to return the instrument that they have been borrowing from UNIS.

We will be doing a check of all instruments before the summer holiday to replace broken or missing strings, accessories and small repairs. These costs will be covered by UNIS. Hopefully, we won’t have any larger breakages or missing instruments which will require your attention. These costs might be extra under the loan agreement form.

This letter is to let you know of the days that students must hand in their instrument and have it checked off by Ms Sally and Ms Mai. Prior to this day, students have a responsibility to thoroughly clean their band instrument at home. We will be watching some you tube links on how to do this. Here is a link to get started.



After this day, all instruments will be kept at school to practice during classes for the last few weeks of this school year.

Thank you for your support at home with your child’s instrumental learning. It is great to hear of their enthusiasm to continue learning an instrument next year in Middle School. I have thoroughly enjoyed working with this particular group of young musicians and watching their confidence grow in their learning and performing.

It has been a great year of music making!


Sally Oxenberry

ES Music

April 23-27 Exhibition Week!

It has been a week of hard work and celebration.  We look forward to continuing to celebrate our learning with you this evening. Please make your way to the Centre for the Arts, to see your informed and action orientated children, showcase their learning.

We are so proud of all their efforts and the positive change they are creating.

Feel free to share the link below so that our UNIS Global Community can watch tonight’s presentation.

It will be available via on the YouTube channel of the Elementary school.



Please read to find our more about next week’s book week:

Everyday of Book Week will offer special activities!

*Wednesday May 2- Wear a Word Day- students wear a word somewhere on their clothing that they identify with, have fun pronouncing or simply enjoy!

*Thursday May 3-Character costume dress up day + Parade- Buddy classes will parade together during assembly time in the Sports Center.

*Friday May 4 Pajama dress up day + bring your soft toy friend + SCO Book Sale!  The class with the most donations for the book sale will get to visit the sale FIRST!

*Plus week long activities including:


  • Mystery Reader: LOOK FOR digital READER SIGN UP email shared earlier.
  • DEAR Time: Drop Everything And Read time-  students carry a book EVERYWHERE w/ them -surprise announcements will happen over the PA.
  • Book Walks throughout the ES
  • Poetry Pathways throughout the ECC
  • +++ AMAZING Library displays and activities

Reminders: No school on Monday May 1 and Tuesday May 2
Sunday of Service May 6
Please donate books for the Book Drive

April 16 – 20

Next week is the long awaited PYPX. The following is the schedule for the two day event.

Tuesday 24th of April Schedule
Students arrive at school at the standard time. They will finish setting up for the presentations (which they started the day prior) and attend any specialty classes up until 12:30 pm. This is when the first visiting schools begin to arrive. G5 students are presenting the PYPX process and then station themselves at their exhibits until 3:20 pm. There will be a short 15-minute break between 1:45 and 2:10. Students will travel home as per normal travel arrangements.

Wednesday is a public holiday, no school

Thursday 26th of April Schedule
Students arrive at school at the standard time and attend the normal school assembly. At 9:10 am students greet the first round of guests. Students continue with their exhibits until 2:55 pm. Normal lunch and break times are observed over the course of the day.

Thursday 26th of April – Parent and Guest Evening Schedule
Students are required to be at school by 5:30 pm to tend to their exhibits and prep for the parent presentation which starts at 6:00 pm. The presentation will take approximately 20 mins. Students will then return to their exhibits and explain their PYPX journey and learning, to parents and a variety of other guests.

At  7:15 pm students will return to the theatre to sing their closing song and listen to the closing statements from their PYP coordinator, Ms Angela Meikle. The event should be finished by 7:30 pm.

April 9 -13

We’ve come back after the break to a flexible schedule where students have more group time and agency to select specialists based on their Exhibition projects. In working towards our presentation deadlines, students are writing songs, making models, creating games in PE, baking, building, creating and owning their learning.

As homeroom teachers we have been supporting the students to form pathways linked to their passions and to highlight their knowledge and understanding. We, like you, are just as excited to see where their creativity takes the groups.

With only nine PYPX days left, all groups are working on finalising research, working on making an interactive and dynamic presentation space and solidifying action.

We invite you to come and watch the students at work next Wednesday, as they continue this process. The children will be in their PYPX groups and coordinating classrooms all day, so check with your child to ensure you know their location on the day. Please note there are no student-led conferences for grade 5 this Wednesday and an email from Megan Brazil has been sent to confirm this arrangement.

In Math we finalised our investigation on chance and data, recognising that chances can be written as fractions. Try the Beanboozled challenge at home, if you dare!  We have moved into exploring division and the many ways it can be represented.  Try solving a division question at home. Come up with as many possible ways as you can to show your thinking.

In Literacy we are completing Literature Circles and writing responses.  We will combine the two and write a response to the book we have read. A response is a combination of retelling and judgement.

Read Below for Some Messages from Our Community:

Dear Parents,

We are one of the Grade 5 PYP Exhibition groups called ‘Plastic Ocean’s’. We are screening a documentary called, ‘A Plastic Ocean’, directed by Craig Leeson and Produced by Jo Ruxton and Adam Leipzig.

A Plastic Ocean documents the newest science, proving how plastics, once they enter the oceans, break up into small particles that enter the food chain where they attract toxins like a magnet. These toxins are stored in seafood’s fatty tissues, and eventually consumed by us.

Plastic pollution isn’t new. But awareness of just how catastrophic it is for the environment has grown in recent years – especially its impact on the oceans. It may be second only to global warming as a threat to the health of the seas.

Here in Vietnam, we’ve seen very little action. And that’s despite the fact that Vietnam has been identified as one of five countries responsible for more than 60% of the world’s plastic pollution.

We want to invite you to attend the screening at UNIS, on the 17th of April, at 6:00 pm to 8:00 pm, to learn and explore ways you can make a difference. A ticket costs 50,000 VND, Feel free to watch this short video to show you why you should attend this screening.

The ticket proceeds will go towards covering the costs of the screening fee, advertising and 100% of the remainder will go towards the ‘Plastic Pollution Coalition’, which is a project of Earth Island Institute, a 501(c)3, non-profit organization, organized and existing under the laws of California (Federal Tax ID #94-2889684), located at: 2150 Allston Way, Suite 460, Berkeley, CA 94704.

With many thanks from us, a group of 10 & 11 year olds trying to make a difference.

Olivia, Lily, Rei and Amara
The Plastics Oceans Group
G5 UNIS Students


Book Drive All You Need to Know!

Book Drive: Monday April 9 – Friday April 27

Book Sale:

Friday 4 May (9.00 – 15.00 reserved for students only)

Saturday 5 May (open to wider community)

WHAT is being collected?

Books only. No games, no toys. Any age group, any language.

What to do?

  • Please place 3 labeled baskets in a convenient place inside your classroom

  • Assist students to put books into the appropriate labeled basket:

    • Children books in English;

    • Young adult/adult books in English;

    • Foreign language, all ages (write name of language inside the book cover)

  • Check to make sure there are NO HOME READERS or LIBRARY BOOKS in the basket

  • Keep a tally of the number of books collected each week by updating on this electronic tally sheet

Pickup Dates & Times

  • Baskets will be emptied every Friday at 3.30pm during the Book Drive (April 13, 20 and 27)

  • Remember to ensure the electronic tally is completed BEFORE 3.30pm on Friday

  • For extra pick-ups, please send an email to

Where does all the money go?

The funds raised at the SCO Used Book Sale will be used to empower a variety of literacy projects created and led by UNIS Hanoi students within the Service Learning Programme!