Last day of 4A 1617

What a fantastic year! It has been amazing to see the incredible changes that all the students made from the beginning of August 2016 until now. I am beyond proud of them and all that they have achieved! In true tradition We took a selfie on the last day of school. It seems though that 22 4th graders take up a lot more space than 22 3rd graders (which is really what they still are on the 1st day of grade 4!) so we cheated a little 😉 I also put the selfie from August so you could see how much they have grown!

This is also the last of the classes where I am lucky enough to have had the same students for two years. We took a selfie to mark the occasion 🙂

I wish you all a safe and happy summer and look forward to seeing you around the school in 2017/18!! Thank you again for a great year!

4A “selfie” on the last day of school year 2016/17

4A “selfie” on the first day of school year 2016/17

Students from 4A who were also in 2MT…they have grown a bit!


Farewell to some peers…

This week UNIS and in particular 4A said goodbye to some friends. It was a reflective time as we heard them each tell us their favourite memories / oldest memories of their time here at UNIS Hanoi. For Max and Emma it has been a long history with Emma finishing 5 years of schooling here and Max, 3. For Rinka and Yashar it was only the 1 year but it was full of memories they will take with them for a long time.

In the modern era we are living in the students were swapping email addresses and skype names and were already planning their next catch ups 😉 I wish them all the best in their future schools (Emma in Germany, Max in Australia, Rinka in Japan and Yashar in Pakistan) and look forward to hearing stories of their adventures!

Introducing the “No Excuses” cards!

As a strategy to help the students learn their multiplication facts we are making what I like to call (and the students found amusing) the “No Excuses” cards. They are a set of flash cards that are focused on one factor (between 3 and 9). They show the number sentence and array on one side and the total product / multiple on the other.

These cards are for the students to use AT HOME to practice.

Each week:

  • They will nominate a factor that that would like to focus on each week (for example, the 2 times tables).
  • They will make their set of “No Excuses” cards for that factor
  • They will bring the cards home

What to do with them:

  • Students can work on them independently
  • Play memory with them
  • Challenge their siblings
  • Work with their parents

The aim:


Why are they called “No Excuses”:

  • they do not require internet connectivity
  • they do not need a computer
  • they do not take up a lot of space
  • they can be played alone
  • they can be REMADE if they are lost
  • they do not need to come back to school

THERE ARE NO EXCUSES not to be practicing 🙂


Hi everyone

4A is booked to go to the library for 20 minutes on Tuesday afternoon to do their book borrowing. I will be recording what books the students are borrowing to read at home so ask that everyone remembers to bring in their library books. If the books are not completed yet, no problem! Just bring / send them in and we can recheck them out so you can continue enjoying them for another week.


Finding Balance

This afternoon in class we talked about the importance of finding balance in our day. At the moment we are doing a lot of reflections based upon tasks in the classroom and I am asking the students to complete these at home if they don’t get them done at school. Many students are commenting on how many “activities” they have on after school each day and that they can’t get any school work done. Many, additionally commented that they are not enjoying their after school fun as much as they could because they are so tired. After hearing at conferences that many of you at home are concerned about the reduced amount of reading for enjoyment and writing for pleasure.

This lead us to an interesting conversation about the importance of balance and making sure that their week has enough time for school, activities, friends, family AND relaxing. I have asked all the students to come home and speak with you about this. I want them to look at what their “normal” week looks like and see if it is balanced or if they need to make some adjustments. Please help your child with this and encourage them to share with you their feelings about their commitments.

Below is a table that you could use with your student to help them get an overall perspective. Please let me know if you need anything from my side.

4A Team Building Challenge!

Last week I posed a “challenge” to the class. In their 7 small groups they were to build a bridge, that would span over a 30cm gap, using 50 popsicle sticks. They used the design process to undertake the challenge, working together to “Think – Make – Improve” their bridges.

Today we “tested” our bridges with all groups hoping that theirs would be the one to hold the most weight. Before we began we analyzed the different designs and predicted which one we thought would be the most successful.

The “testing” part of the challenge was a lot of fun. The winners were Max, Rachel and Ray with 4kg in weight…the bridge that the most class members predicted!


In reflection the students identified their team work skills as having improved saying “we were more cooperative as a group and we used our planning time efficiently”. They also commented that they believe they have built their commitment skills, sticking to the task and changing it to make it better, rather than giving up. They highlighted their iTime work as a task that has helped them with this.

Here are a few fun photos of the task!


Grade 4 Field Trip on Tuesday

Hello everyone

Today your child will be bringing home a personalised field trip notice relating to the field trip on Tuesday the 21st of February. There will be 7 groups of 4th graders visiting one historical Vietnamese site with supervising teachers and a private tour guide during periods 1 through 4.

Please can you sign the form and send it back into school on Monday. The students will need to bring with them a packed snack and small back pack, they will be back to school in time for lunch. Warm weather is also forecast so please make sure the students bring a hat with them.

Please let me know if you have any questions 🙂

Our 2 Risk Takers!

This morning was a very special moment for two of 4A’s beginning English learners! Maral and Ester were huge risk takers this morning as they presented to the whole class. Both girls spoke to the class about their self improvement projects where they ran every day as a way to improve their respiratory systems.

The whole class were super encouraging to the girls and gave them some fantastic feedback. What a milestone for these two girls! Myself and their classmates are so proud of them!

Assembly Today

Today at assembly 4A had many different parts that they were involved in so I thought I would share some photos below.

I wish you all a safe and happy holiday period and hope you all have some quality time with your loved ones. I look forward to seeing you all in 2017!


Our risk-taking student council representative, Emma helped host the entire event…


The school said a formal goodbye to Min Ju and Milena. The class had a small goodbye party for the girls yesterday (thank you for sending in goodies for the party!) and we will be very sad to say a final farewell to them tomorrow. Min Ju joined UNIS Hanoi when she was in K2 with Ms Corlia. I was lucky enough to teach her in Grade 2 and now again in Grade 4. Milena arrived at the beginning of this year and immediately settled into the UNIS way of life. It has been an absolute pleasure to teach both of the girls and we will all miss them dearly. Min Ju is off to South Korea and Milena to Finland. We wish them, and their families, all the best for their moves and hope they keep in touch with us.


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The some people from Blue Dragon came to collect a cheque for the money that was raised by the Walk-a-thon. Such an impressive amount!

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Birthdays that are being celebrated while we are on break we recognised (happy birthday in advance to Emma and Fame)…