This Week in 1A, November 1st

UOI-Healthy Choices

We started this week making healthy snacks in each of our Grade 1 classes. The students had to cut cucumbers and cheese and place it on top of the rye bread. Some of our students used a real knife for the first time. After each class made the snacks, we did a Healthy Snacks Kahoot and then we ate the delicious snacks. Your child now knows how to make healthy snacks. I wonder what they will make for you?


This week during math, we had the opportunity to work on our coding skills. The students learned how to code first before making a robot out of legos. The robots were able to change color and make sounds based on the codes that each pair of students put in the program. The students will continue to build on their coding skills and create robots to perform certain tasks.

Mystery Reader

This week’s Mystery Reader was Olivia’s dad, Mark. Mr Mark learned English as his first language. He read us a book called The Firebird by Mairi Mackinnon. We loved hearing the story about the small carving that was given to the prince. Thank you for sharing it with us, Mr Mark.

MRISA Basketball 

UNIS Is part of an organization called MRISA (Mekong River International Schools Association). Each year our school hosts sporting events and our grade-level sponsors a team. This year basketball teams from around the region came and we hosted ISE (International School Eastern Seaboard, from Thailand). The students made headbands, we took a photo with their team and we cheered them on at one of their games. ISE comes to UNIS without a cheering section, so this is a great way for them to feel great about their team. Go Eagles.

We always support our UNIS TEAMS and we want our UNIS teams to do their best and it is important for other teams to feel welcome and supported.


Math-3 Act Math Task

This morning our students were introduced to a 3 Act Math Task. We based it on Halloween candy. The students had to estimate the number of candy bars in the bag and then show their thinking using pictures and numerals. Our students are amazing mathematicians and they worked so hard in solving this problem.

SDG (Sustainable Development GHOULS…) Happy Halloween





This Week in 1A, October 25th

UN Day

Thank you to everyone for joining us for this year’s UN Day celebrations. It was a fantastic celebration of our school’s identity and a wonderful opportunity for our community to come together. An extra special thank you to Jasmin, Rionne’s mom, for all her hard work in organizing the delicious lunch buffet and to all parents for providing food for the event.

I Wish…

During SDG Week, we made an ‘I Wish’ posters and presented them to each other on UN Day. The students were so excited to see their special creations and talk about their wishes with parents, special guests and friends.

After UN Day, we had an opportunity to share our wishes with each other. We noticed that some of our wishes for the planet are the same. The future will be bright with all of these wonderful human beings in charge of our planet.

SDG Week-A Plastic Ocean

Here is the video that we made of the students swimming in all of the plastic last week during SDG Week. Please enjoy!

Happy Birthday, Eimear!

Eimear’s birthday was on UN Day, but she wanted to celebrate it the next day. We had a lovely time singing to her in both English and Vietnamese. Thank you to her parents for bringing in the special muffins. We loved them! Happy Happy Birthday to Eimear!

Literacy-Our Current Text Type: Response

We have started the first of our text types for this year: Response. This text type focuses on  responding to and analyzing objects or events in a structured format. Students will be learning to distinguish between nouns and pronouns, justifying their opinion using the terms like/dislikes and will build a repertoire of adjectives to support their opinions.

Literacy-Mr Brian Visits Grade 1A

Mr Brian, our UNIS Speech and Language Specialist, came to our class this week to help us remember how to breath when we are speaking and saying our letter sounds. He even brought a special teeth and tongue puppet to show us where to put our tongues when we say certain letters like D, T, K, G and more. Mr Brian will continue to work with our students throughout the year for special, whole-class lessons. Thank you Mr Brian for coming and teaching us.

Math and UOI-Graphing

During math and UOI this week, we talked a lot about our special lunch from last week. Ms Jill came in and introduced why graphs are important. We made a whole class graph and were able to make comparisons with our graph. We learned that we use a graph for various reasons such as:

  • I can talk about data on a graph.
  • I can describe data on a graph using numbers and words like more and most and fewer and not very many.

Plau Based Learning

Here are some photos of our time in Play Based Learning this week. The students are enjoying getting to know all the friends from Grade 1 and working together to explore the materials.

An Important Notice about Home Readers

Thank you for your patience with our paper folders. Please be assured that fabric book bags are coming soon. We ask that you support your child be re-reading their chosen text with you each night and returning it to school the next day. This is an important daily routine to best support your child’s literacy growth this year.

Children are encouraged to choose a book that is a good fit (they can read the majority of the text with ease) and is of interest to them. While the level of the book may give some indication of the complexity of the book we fully encourage students to choose books that they are motivated to read for this reason you may notice your child choosing to reread a book or from time to time taking on a more complex book that they wish to tackle with your support.

Bikes to School on Monday
The Grade 1 Wheels Unit will begin next week, October 28th.
1. We request that all students bring their bikes and helmets to school on October 28th from 7:45-8:30 from the Main Gate. Upon arrival, you will be directed by the PE staff to the storage location where all bikes will be stored (see attached).
2. If your bike has training wheels on them, we request that you remove them.
3. To help us with the organization, it would be helpful if you put a label on your child’s bike and helmet that includes your child’s name and homeroom.
Screen Shot 2019-10-24 at 8.22.15 AM.png
4. The unit will end on November 22nd, and all bikes can be collected on that day from 3:30-4:00.


  • October 31st ES Dress Up Day: Please discuss with your child what they may wear for our dress up day on Thursday. We ask that children do not wear masks and highly encourage some creative home grown costumes.
  • There will be no school on November 11 due to it being a staff professional development day.
  • Save the Date: On November 19th open classrooms will take place across the Elementary School. More information to follow.


This Week in 1A, October 18th

SDG Week

This week we have had so many wonderful opportunities to learn about the Sustainable Development Goals. We have read many books that connect to an SDG, watched Thomas the Tank Engine videos about the SDGs and had many experiences to help us think more deeply about how we can help people, animals and the entire world.

UOI-#3 Good Health and Well Being

We started our week with a lunchtime provocation of having the students take as much or as little food as they wanted to. We continued our learning about balance and how we can have a balanced plate. We did some graphing about what each student picked and we will continue to graph next week to analyze our food choices. We will also start to look at healthy snacks.

Mystery Reader #4 Quality Education

Thank you to Calliope’s mom, Ms Lindsey, for coming and reading us a wonderful story about some adventurous bears. We learned that Ms Lindsey speaks English and a little bit of Vietnamese and French. Thank you for coming and being our Mystery Reader. We wonder who the next Mystery Reader will be.

UOI and PE #15 Life Below Water

During swimming this week, the students got to experience what it is like for animals to swim in our polluted oceans filled with plastic. We will be talking more about this in the weeks to come. At frist the students were laughing and having a great time moving around the plastic and then they reflected on it a bit more. It was hard to swim in and around all the trash. It was so difficult. How do animals do it? What if the animals think the plastic is food? What is happening to the animals? These are some of the questions that we are goign to explore.


The students have been learning about different word families and which words are in the family and which words are not in the family. We have also been adding prefixes and suffixes to words. We had some fun looking at the word PLAY this week. Words are in the family when they are spelled the same (structure) and have the same meaning.

Play Based Learning #4 Quality Education

This week we started Play Based Learning OUTSIDE with all four classes. The students have enjoyed being with their peers and investigating all of the different areas of exploration outside. Please ask your child about their experience with the flubber, the maker area, the puppets on stage, the mud kitchen, the big blue blocks, the kitchen area, the painting area, the construction and building area and all the friends that they are exploring with. We are excited to see what happens with this space and time once the students take the lead and plan our time.

Buddies and UOI #3 Good Health and Well Being

During buddies the week, our Grade 4 buddies wanted to teach our students how to ride skateboards. The Grade 4 students have a skateboard unit and they wanted to share their learning. The students first had to put on their helmets and pads. Our buddies worked very hard to teach our students how to stand on the skateboard, how to balance and how to move without support. Our buddies thought that teaching our students was hard work. We have amazing communicators and risk-takers in Grade 1. Way to go!!!


  • UN Day is Monday, October 21st begiing at 11am for the UN Day Assembly in the Sport’s Center. Please arrive around 10:30am to get a seat. Please bring your food to the classroom in the morning when your child arrives at school. If your child does not have a country costume, please have them wear a nice outfit on this day. Thank you for all of your support. We appreciate it.



This Week in 1A, October 4th


Thank you for coming to the Learning Conversations this week. It was so wonderful to be with each of you and have your child tell you about their 2 Stars and 1 Wish. The students were wonderful communicators in sharing their learning with you. Thank you for being a huge part of their learning journey.


UOI-Thank You

This week we made Thank You cards to Nurse Jo for helping us learn so much about hygiene. Nurse Jo was so excited to receive so many cards from our Grade 1 friends. Thank you to Nurse Jo for making such a big difference in our unit.

SDG Week

In preparation for our UN Day Celebration, we will spend the week after the break investigating the United Nation Sustainable Development Goals. Today, your child chose one goal from the 17 SDG’s that we would like you to translate into your home language. Please translate the title of the goal and discuss the goal with your child at home. Please only translate the title of the goal not the entire text. 

Please look at your child’s SDG and input the translation here is this document. We will be reading lots of books on the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals and watching some interesting short films. We will also collaborate with other classrooms in the ES. Our activities will include painting pictures and writing poems. Please remember October 21st is UN Day, and please send your child to school in his/her traditional country costume or dress. We will have an early release day on UN Day.

UN Day Announcements

UN Day is coming on Monday, October 21st. It is one of the most important days at UNIS. Please join us in the Sports Center for a morning full of fun and then a wonderful community lunch, beginning at 10:30am. Our Room Parent will be sharing more information with you about the lunch. Here are some photos of students, teachers and parents dressed for this special day. Please have your child come to school in the following:

  • Dress in their national/cultural costume
  • Adopt the national/cultural costume of a country to which you feel a special affinity through family, friends or having lived there

Global Read Aloud

This week during our literacy time, we started the book Stella Diaz Has Something To Say by Angela Dominiguez. It is a story about a young girl who is learning to speak English in her school. She speaks Spanish at home. Young readers all over the world are reading this book and we are a part of that. We even had our Literacy Coach, Ms Angela, come in and read a few chapters to us. We are all wondering who the new student will be in Stella’s class. Please ask your child about Stell and what we already know about Stella.



  • October 5-13 UNIS School Holiday, No School
  • Please bring in plastic water bottles or containers for a special project that we are doing after the holiday.
  • October 21 UN Day

This Week in 1A, September 27th

Student Parent Teacher Conferences/Learning Conversations

This week we have been reflecting on the Approaches to Learning skills (ATL) that we feel we demonstrate really well as those that we feel we could get better at. During our Learning Conversations next Monday (September 30th) you and your child will meet with Ms Kristin to discuss the 2 Stars (two ATL skills that your child has identified as a strength) along with 1 wish (one ATL skill that your child would like to improve upon). The template below will support our conversation. Ms Kristin will also share 2 Stars and 1 Wish with you and your child as feedback. Here are the ATL categories that will be discussed.


Please note that your child will be involved for the first half of the meeting (approximately 7 mins) and the second half of the meeting will be an opportunity for you as parents to discuss progress with Ms Kristin. Ms Lam will lead a task in the classroom with your child during the second half of the meeting.

Moon Festival Masks

I hope that you enjoyed your child’s Moon Festival mask they brought home this week. The students worked very hard on painting and adding detail to their mask. We all had so much fun painting together.

UOI-Who We Are, Unit Overview

This week during our UOI time,  Nurse Jo came in and taught our students about the importance of hygiene. We learned that washing our hands, brushing our teeth, taking showers daily and washing our clothes are essential in how to stay clean and healthy. We did some sorting of what good food are and what food might be bad for our teeth and body. We also made plates of food by drawing healthy food.

Later in the week, Nurse Jo came back to see if we are washing our hands properly. We learned that most of us are NOT washing them well. Nurse Jo put a special gel on our hands and then we washed them. She introduced us to a special ‘Germ Monster Box’ to highlight all of the germs that were still left on our hands after washing them. Wow, we learned that in order to properly wash our hands we need to sing Happy Birthday twice before all of the germs are off our hands.

We ended the week talking about germs and how germs are everywhere in the world. We committed to doing our part in trying to not have as many germs in our classroom by washing our hands as much as we need to. We made germs out of pipe cleaners to help us remember. The students loved making them and putting eyes on them. We have them displayed inside our classroom.

Happy Birthday, Chaerin!

Chaerin celebrated her birthday this week and we were so excited to help her ring in another year! Happy Birthday to Chaerin!!! Thank you for the delicious cupcakes.

Mystery Reader

This week we had Rionne’s mom, Ms Jasmine, come and read to us. We learned that Ms Jasmine’s mother tongue is Korean. She also speaks fluent Japanese and English. While living in Brazil, she also learned Portuguese. We loved the story of the little princess that was bald and wanted to go to the ball without wearing any special hair, just her bald head. It is so important to be who you are!. Thank you for coming and we look forward to our next Mystery Reader. I wonder who it will be?


  • Students need to bring a swimsuit, towel, goggles and a swimming cap for long-haired students every Tuesday, Thursday and Fridays until further notice.
  • October 5-13 UNIS School Holiday, No School
  • October 21st UN Day, please send your child to school in his/her traditional country costume



This Week in 1A, September 20

Moon Festival

We had a wonderful day celebrating the Moon Festival in 1A. The students looks amazing in his/her Ao Dais and loved taking part in all of the festivities. We had a lower Elementary School assembly with special dances and performances by the upper Elementary School students and an outside Vietnamese tour group. We ate moon cakes and learned so much about the special holiday from Ms Lam.

Mystery Reader

Our very first Mystery Reader was Gigi’s mom, Ms Antonia. It was so great to have her join us. We learned that Ms Antonia’s first language is English and she read us a wonderful story about a cat. Thank you Ms Antonia for volunteering to be our first Mystery Reader. We are excited to find out who our next Mystery Reader will be.

Lilia’s Birthday

We celebrated Lilia’s birthday this week. She was so excited to sing Happy Birthday in English, Vietnamese and German. Happy Birthday to Lilia!

UOI and Math

During our math and UOI times this week, we continued our learning about Balance. We practiced balancing objects using rocks and wood. We worked alone and then with a partner and then in a group. Each time brought new successes and new sets of challenges.

International Day of Peace and Dot Day

This week we celebrated both the International Day of Peace and Dot Day. We wrote peace poems with our Grade 4 buddies and created both 2D and 3D dots. Please look at your child’s Seesaw for some fun activities that we did this week.


  • September 27th 8:30am EAL Coffee Morning
  • Grade 1 students will be starting their swimming unit on September 24th. This unit will run until October 25th. Please visit the swimming expectations page to learn about the requirements for swimming units at UNIS. You can also check out the swimming curriculum page to learn more about the swim program at UNIS.

This Week in 1A, September 6th

Back to School Night

Thank you to all of the parents that attended Back to School Night last night. It was so nice meeting you again, getting to know you better and talking with you about your child. Here is the entire presentation from last night. Please let me know if you have any questions.

EAL Parent Coffee Morning


  • Please sign up for Mystery Reader for our class. You will need to bring a book in your mother tongue. You will receive more details about it once you sign up.
  • Bring Library bags and books every Monday.
  • Please send in headphones for your child. We will be starting to use them next week.

This Week in 1A, August 30


Today, your child brought home the Seesaw introduction letter for you. Please sign up and start to look at the important work that your child has already started. We encourage you to make comments on your child’s blog using the following framework.

This week your child made his/her self portrait. The students worked really hard and were very creative. The students also put his/her self portrait on Seesaw with a surprise video. Can you spot your child?


We had our first session with our Grade 4 Buddies this week. It was so fun getting to know them and playing with them in our classroom. We are excited to see what we do with our buddies as the year progresses.

Happy Birthday

This week we celebrated Tsu Tsu and Audrey’s birthdays. We sang Happy Birthday in English and Vietnamese. Thank you to the families for bringing in the special treats. A big HAPPY BIRTHDAY to Tsu Tsu and Audrey.

Introducing Ms Jill, Grade 1 EAL Coach

My name is Jill Landretti. I will be working with the Grade 1 Homeroom teachers this year to support students’ learning of social and academic English in reading, writing, speaking, and listening. I am originally from the United States and have taught in the U.S., Japan, and Ghana as a classroom teacher, EAL teacher, and first grade learning support teacher. I am so excited to join this amazing team of educators at UNIS Hanoi this year!

At UNIS Hanoi, we believe that English Language and Literacy development are integral to learning, therefore, EAL support happens in the classroom and is integrated into all aspects of teaching and learning throughout the school day. As first grade teachers, we recognize that all of our students are language learners who are learning how to read, write, speak and understand new vocabulary and concepts, therefore, all students receive integrated English language instruction provided by Homeroom Teachers, myself, and Teaching Assistants. Our philosophy is to immerse students in language-rich learning activities and to explicitly teach grammar and vocabulary within context. Students who are at a beginning English level also receive additional targeted support during the World Language lesson times and all students are monitored by the team throughout the year to ensure that they are making positive language progress. I look forward to meeting you at our ‘Back To School’ Parent night next week. If you have any questions, feel free to contact me directly at


  • After School Activities (ASA) Start next Tuesday
  • No School on Monday in honor of Vietnamese National Day
  • Please bring library books and bags on Tuesday and we will exchange them due to missing our usual time on Monday
  • Back to School Night
    Thursday, September 5th
    The first session starts at 6PM and the second session starts at 6:30 PM. We look forward to seeing you at this event. This is a parent only event.
  • September 12th Moon Festival, Please have your child wear an Ao Dai to school



This Week in 1A, August 23rd

Getting to Know You: Who Am I?

We made ‘All About Me’ posters and the students shared with a partner first and then were able to present them to the entire class. We learned about families, friends, home country flags and favorites. The students were amazing risk takers and communicators.

Summer Sunglasses

We also made some Summer Sunglasses filled with lots of summer memories. The students loved making these too.


This week during math, we learned about math stations. Our focus is on exposing our students to math problems that they can explain his/her thinking in multiple ways. The students really enjoyed the mystery bag/ten frame counting and making equations, playing treasure hunt, working together on a puzzle, doing dot to dot, playing with lego and answering some questions through rolling the dice. Working in small groups is one strategy that we use during math.

Grade 1 Community

Did you know that a community is a group of people who have something in common? We’ve been continuing to build our 1A and our Grade 1 community. We played some community building games with our whole grade on Monday. The students did such an awesome job of working together as a team and community.

Meeting Ms Nitasha

This week we had the pleasure of having Ms Nitasha, our ECC Deputy Principal, come in and read to us. We loved her book Alma and How She Got Her Name by Juana Martinez-Neal. The students shared with a partner the special meaning of their names. Does your child know where their name came from?

First ECC Assembly

This week we went to our first ECC Assembly of the school year. We sang songs, learned about playground safety and at the end of each assembly, we celebrated birthdays and sang to all of our birthday friends.

Photo Day
We will have photo day on Tuesday, August 27th. Please have your child wear a nice outfit in the morning and pack his/her PE uniform in backpacks. The students will change after the photo. Thank you.
Family Photo
Thank you to the parents who have emailed or sent it a family photo. If you have not emailed me yet, please send it to me next week. 
Please pack a big snack for your child (at least 2-3 things). The students will eat two snacks during the day.
Library Book Exchange
Each Monday, we will have library time to check out books and return books from the week before. Please send your books back on Mondays with a library bag (can be a UNIS bag from the UNIS shop). We will start our Library times next Monday.
Brown Paper Take Home Folder
When needed, your child will bring home a brown paper take home folder. Please read the contents and send the folder back to school the next day.
Parent Questionnaire

Please send the G1 Parent Questionnaire back to school after you have had a chance to fill it out. All forms are due on Friday, August 30th. 

Birthdays in Grade 1B
If you would like your child to celebrate his/her birthday in class, please send a special treat along in the morning. We will find a special time during the day to celebrate your child and his/her classmates.
Please send a set of headphones for your child to use at school. We will keep them all year and send them home at the end of the year. They will be using them during our reading times. Thank you for all of the students who have brought them in already.

Welcome to Grade 1A, August 16

Welcome to Grade 1A

We have had a wonderful time getting to know each other and learning the routines of Grade 1. Here are a few pictures from our week. We started the school year with an opening Assembly with our entire school (D-12). We watched the Dragon Dance and cheered for the 2019-2020 School Year.

Our Grade 1A Class

Back Row: Sarah, Lilia, Gigi, Maddi, Calliope, Olivia, Jai, Ryuma, Hans and Yulysis

Front Row: Ms Krisitn, Andy, Audrey, Eimear, Lam, Se Ah, Chaerin, Tsu Tsu, Rionne, Julian and Ms Lam

Getting to Know You

We had a lot of opportunities to get to know each other these first 3 days. We played name games, explored our classroom and toured parts of the school. All of the students (and teachers too) are excited for the year ahead.

Grade 1B Time Table

This year the Elementary School is on a 10-day schedule. We have a Week A and Week B. The PE days and Library days will remain the same for your child each week.



  • Birthdays-if you would like to have your child celebrate his/her birthday at school, please bring in a sweet treat in the morning and we will celebrate sometime during that school day. Please see Ms Kristin if you have questions.
  • ID cards are kept at school. Students do not take them home. If you need to add money to the card, you can do that online or come to school to add money manually.
  • Please email me one family photo for us to use this school year
  • Send in a snack and water bottle for your child, daily
  • Please label all items (water bottles, clothing etc)