Grade 5 PYP Exhibition

The Primary Years Program Exhibition (PYPx) is a showcase of the concepts and skills that Grade 5 students have learned throughout our Elementary School years in the PYP. It began with students taking our passions and connecting them to an issue. From there, the teachers sorted everyone into small groups of two to five students. This year the groups include social media and screen time, global warming, animal welfare, endangered animals, deforestation, animal cruelty, gender education, education resources, quality education, water quality, LGBTQ, plastic ocean, human impact on the ocean, hunger, clean energy, plastic pollution and reuse, animal trafficking and poaching, waste and cooking, war and weapons, domestic violence, unemployment, homelessness, girls in sports, gender equality and transport.

For the first few weeks, the students worked on developing our lines of inquiries to have an idea of what we were going to research. After researching, we took the information and wrote informational reports. Then we revised, edited and published our reports, which can now be found in the library.

We spent the last two weeks taking action and preparing our presentations.

All our hard work will be exhibited on 24 April and 25 April in the UNIS Centre for the Arts at the following times:

Wednesday, 24 April

  • 10:00am – 11:00am
  • 12:00pm – 1:30pm

Thursday, 25 April

  • 9:30am – 11:00am
  • 12:00pm – 1:30pm
  • 6:00pm – 8:00pm (special presentation for families and friends)

We hope to see you at the PYPx!

The G5 Student Publicity Committee (Hannah, Ivy, SungJoon, Zoe)

The Solution for Plastic Ocean Problem? – Expert Visit at UNIS Hanoi

Dr Sandra Whitehouse is a Doctor of Philosophy, a Marine Biologist and a senior policy advisor with Ocean Conservancy. While she was here in Vietnam talking to different Government bodies about ocean plastics and marine debris, both in the oceans and river systems, she found time to visit with a group of grade five and six UNIS Hanoi students.

Dr Whitehouse made it clear that the problem of plastic entering the world’s oceans is something that can be fixed in 10 to 15 years. She also explained that the issues of plastic and other debris aren’t simple ones. For example, she is often asked why people don’t get rid of plastic water bottles and go back to glass bottles. “The simple answer, in most cases, is the cost of the ‘carbon footprint’ on the climate and a more comprehensive solution to the problems are recycling and reusing.

Dr Whitehouse explained that Ocean Conservancy and corporate companies are actively looking for ways to reduce waste that is environmentally damaging, through an initiative called the ‘Trash Free Seas Alliance’. Working closely with large corporate companies such as Coca Cola, DOW, WWF, Walmart and AMCOR, to name a few, to bring about change in production and strengthen their responsibility for product disposal, is a high priority.

Another subject in Dr Whitehouse’s presentation was Government spending. The amount of money spent by Governments to support waste management systems is minute compared to money spent on other areas such as schools, water and sanitation, and infrastructure.  

Students had the opportunity to ask Dr Whitehouse questions.

Where is all this plastic coming from?

There are two major sources of ocean plastic. 20 percent is actually still coming from sea-based human activities, direct dumping of plastic in garbage off of boats, fishing gear that’s either been lost or improperly discarded, or from containers spilled into the ocean. But what we also know is that 80 percent of plastic is originating from the land from human activities there, and, in that case, it’s from a number of different sources. We now know that the 50 percent of the leakage of plastic into the ocean is currently coming from five rapidly developing countries in Asia and Southeast Asia, and those are China, Indonesia, the Philippines, Vietnam and Sri Lanka.

According to Dr Whitehouse, about 66 percent of wildlife is impacted by marine debris either by damaging digestive tracts, poisoning, or entanglement, and about 8 million metric tons of plastic is getting into the ocean every day; 80 percent coming from land-based activities. Much of the problem is caused by direct dumping due to the lack of waste facilities. So while some countries are producing more plastic, 99 percent ends up in landfills, whereas developing countries such as Indonesia and China don’t have the proper facilities and necessary management.

What is the solution?

“There isn’t one single solution,” Dr Whitehouse said, explaining that there’s a process and some countries struggle with one specific aspect or another, whether that’s collecting the trash or providing a landfill for dumping. “They’ll need to be tailored for each country.” Dr Whitehouse explained that the Ocean Conservancy is working to solve plastic production and disposal issues from the home, to waste management systems such as landfills.

Dr Whitehouse reminded students that part of solving this worldwide problem was in their hands too. By continuing to be well informed about these issues, spreading awareness and educating others. “You are our future and without you, we don’t have a chance to fix these problems”.

Saturday Service Community Day – Sign up now!

Join Saturday Service Community Day on 4 May to make a Better World together!

This Service Learning community event is for UNIS Hanoi students, parents, faculty, staff, our service partners and the wider Hanoi community to connect with each other through fun and meaningful service activities and we hope that you will join in.

On Saturday 4 May there will be a variety of service activities for you to choose from:

  • A visit with Grade 6 students to the Tam Dao Moon Bear Sanctuary: The G6 students are currently collaborating with the Animals Asia on eight different action projects connected to the Moon Bear Sanctuary in Tam Dao. Volunteers for this activity will be led by the G6 students on a tour of the centre in Tam Dao and help them develop their abilities as Moon bear Ambassadors. Volunteers will also be asked to complete some other sketching, photography and research activities connected to the G6 Moonbears projects. This activity is for children of all ages, children under 15 must be accompanied by an adult. We are looking for 30 volunteers. The group will leave midday and return to UNIS Hanoi at around 17.30.
  • Keep Hanoi Clean (KHC) clean-up morning: Join Keep Hanoi Clean volunteers in their efforts to contribute to making Hanoi a better environment for all of us. This clean-up session will focus on Hoa Binh Park (about 10 mins by taxi from UNIS Hanoi) and is a family friendly location. Gloves, tongs and water will be provided as we join the KHC team and volunteers to make a difference in the local community. We are looking 50 volunteers to join. Check out Hoa Binh park location on Google Map 
  • Games afternoon with blind students: This year UNIS Hanoi has established a new connection with a local organisation that supports blind and visually impaired children and their families. A group of Grade 8 students and teachers have led one successful day at UNIS Hanoi in Semester 1 and this will be our second session with the group. The Grade 8 students have prepared some educational story based activities for the students to take away and we will also work with the leaders of the group to run sports, arts and music activities with the children. We welcome 10 volunteers of 12 years old and above to come and join in the activities. Please note that children under 15 must be accompanied by an adult.
  • Games and Art activities with children from Thuy An Village and the Huong La Centre: Come and play fun team and sports games with children from Thuy An Village Orphanage and Huong La Centre. A group of Grade 8 and HS students will lead the children through various sports and arts games. Volunteers will participate in games of football and other arts/ activities set up for our visitors. A great opportunity for members of our community that have an interest and/or expertise in working with people with disabilities to connect with these groups that UNIS Hanoi has develop close relationships with over a number of years. We are looking forward to welcoming 15 volunteers of 12 years old and above to join in.

SIGN-UP HERE to join your favourite activity

The UNIS Hanoi SCO Used Book Sale is happening on the same day in the morning and this year there will be a flea market as well. We will organise a BBQ that we will use to invite our service partners to have lunch with us.

SCO Project Funding Success in Middle School

A special THANK YOU from the “Middle” to the SCO this week!

We have returned from Spring Break to find beautiful, Vietnamese lanterns in B5 and B6.

The MS Leadership Team took it literally when offered last fall and applied for the grant through the invitation…

The SCO develop new initiatives from students, teachers and parents to enhance our school and our community. If you feel the need for some equipment on campus, or have figured out a way to implement the UN’s SDGs within our community, or have an idea for a workshop and need money to make it real, you can apply for funding from the SCO.

To learn more SCO Project Funding website.  Or email

Thanks again SCO for helping to enhance our community here at UNIS Hanoi!

Marc Vemeire and the MS Team

STEAMfest – Save the date!

You are invited to…

Join us for a day full of exciting activities! Come connect, share ideas and learn how Science, Technology, Engineering, Art & Math come together to form STEAM!!

Students, staff, and parents are invited to share an activity or demonstration on STEAMfest. Email Sarah Schneider at by 18 April 2019 to sign up!

Who: UNIS Hanoi community
What: Showcase of STEAM-related work and ideas including:

  • Local STEAM celebrity guest speakers
    1. Trang Tran: CEO & Founder of organic & sustainable agricultural company Fargreen
    2. Luong Trung Tien: Founder of creative science/ STEM channel called Táy Máy Tò Mò
  • Variety of demonstration booths and challenges
  • Underwater robot obstacle course
  • Lunch options provided for purchase

Where: UNIS Hanoi (B8B & pool)
When: 18 May, 9 AM – 1 PM

Questions, comments, or concerns? Email

Spring 2019 Parent-Election to the Board

On behalf of the Board, I am pleased to announce that Maria S. Chung and Zeynel Kasapoglu have presented their candidacy for the Parent Elect position on the UNIS Board of Directors, the term which will run from June 2019 until June 2023. As we have two candidates but only one position open, we will hold an online election from today Friday 12 April – 12 noon to Friday 26 April 2019 – 12 noon.

The community will have an opportunity to meet with the two candidates at the Community Meeting with Head of School on Tuesday 23 April 08.15 09.15 . As well as other agenda items, candidates will be invited to introduce themselves and to explain why they have chosen to seek election.  

Making your vote

Each parent should have now received an email on Friday 12 April from UNIS Hanoi with a link to their unique vote for this parent election to the Board. The unique link to vote will show both candidates’ pictures with attached personal statements in English, Vietnamese and Korean. Simply indicate which candidate you wish to vote for and submit your vote. Voting is anonymous and managed via a third party voting software Scholastico Ecoballot. If you experience any difficulty with voting please send an email directly to Results will be shared with the community at the Board Annual General Meeting 7 May and in the Tin Tuc.

I would like to take this opportunity to thank Maria Chung and Zeynel Kasapoglu for putting forward their candidacy.

Best regards,

Ngo Thi Quynh Hoa
Board Vice Chair



Name: Maria S. Chung

Nationality: American 
Grade of child: Daughter, K2
Arrived in Hanoi: 2009
Expects to live in Hanoi: Long term

Click here for Maria’s personal statement in English, Vietnamese and Korean

 Personal Statement:

As a parent, international attorney and committed volunteer at UNIS, I have had a wealth of professional and personal training in listening and advocacy. When I first embarked on my legal career in the US, I worked as a City Prosecutor representing over 50 government agencies within the state of California, while serving on the Board of Korean-American Democratic Committee and the Korean-American Community Lawyers Association. For the last 10 years, I have been practicing law in Vietnam in the areas of international arbitration, corporate compliance, and general commercial matters. I am also actively involved in community and business organizations such as the American Chamber of Commerce, the Korean Chamber of Business, and Board of Korean Residents Association (specifically, the Education Committee).

Most recently, I started volunteering with the Fundraising Task Force at UNIS, getting to know the school community and learning about its needs. Owing to my professional training and volunteer experience, I am well prepared to navigate culturally sensitive situations and to bring about solutions when there are differing interests and opinions.

I come from a family of educators and am a passionate believer in the power of education to build a better world. Moreover, my legal training enables me to ask key questions, research viable solutions and negotiate agreeable outcomes. These skills, along with my empathy for each student and educator, will be my contributions to the UNIS Board. If given the opportunity, I look forward to promoting collaborative and open dialogues about the important issues that impact the UNIS community and working with others to secure quality education for all our students.

Name: Zeynel KasapogluNationality: Cypriot-Cyprus
Grade of children: Daughters – grade 4, 2, K2 and Son – Discovery
Arrived in Hanoi: 2009
Expects to live in Hanoi: Long termClick here for Zeynel’s personal statement in English, Vietnamese and Korean

Personal Statement:

Dear Parents, I am writing to introduce myself and seek

your support to serve the UNIS Community as a member

at the UNIS Hanoi Board of Directors.

I was born in Limassol, Cyprus but lived most of my adult life in London, United Kingdom, managing play, youth and community work projects in the London Boroughs of Islington, Wandsworth and City of Westminster Council. My work experience in Vietnam includes 3 years of lecturing in strategic management at Full- time and Executive MBA Programmes at FPT University-Hanoi Business School between 2009-2012 and the establishment and management of ILSE Education and Consulting since 2010. The centre specializes in academic English, international exams and overseas education consulting.

My motivation for this role is our four children at UNIS Hanoi who are studying at Discovery, K2 and Elementary Schools. Just like every parent at UNIS Hanoi, I want the very best for my children. I want them to be happy, confident and become the very best that they can be. As a parent, I am passionate about supporting the school, but when necessary, engaging in tough scrutiny since there is nothing more important than the education and welfare of our children.

Clear direction and leadership are key skills and qualities to effective school governing body and therefore a successful school. If appointed, I promise to work collaboratively to ensure that the school is not achieving for every child, but that it is constantly striving to exceed for every child.


Shreak The Musical – Get Your Tickets Now!

UNIS Hanoi proudly presents:

“Once upon a time, there was a little ogre named Shrek….” And thus begins the tale of an unlikely hero who finds himself on a life-changing journey alongside a wisecracking Donkey and a feisty princess who resists her rescue. Throw in a short-tempered bad guy, a cookie with an attitude and over a dozen other fairy tale misfits, and you’ve got the kind of mess that calls for a real hero. Luckily, there’s one on hand… and his name is Shrek.

UNIS HaNoi high school students brings Shrek The Musical, a Tony Award-winning fairy tale adventure, featuring all new songs from Jeanine Tesori and a sidesplitting book by David Lindsay-Abaire to HaNoi. Shrek brings all the beloved characters you know from the film to life on stage and proves there’s more to the story than meets the ears.

Tickets are on sale at 150,000VND each, can be purchased at the UNIS HaNoi Centre for the Arts Office or in front of the canteen during lunch.

UNIS Ha Noi Student Film Shortlisted for AAYFF 2019 International Student Film Festival

This year’s Across Asia Youth Film Festival received 244 films from 101 schools across 15 countries. Out of this batch of films, 21 have been shortlisted for the final awards ceremony to be held in Ho Chi Minh City next weekend on Saturday, 20 April.

One group of UNIS Hanoi grade 9 students submitted a film that has been shortlisted for the awards ceremony in the age 13-15 category! They produced a documentary about student stress and coping with it. Watch the film below:

In addition to the festival awards, there is an audience choice award that YOU can vote for! Please follow this link to vote (scroll to the bottom of the page for the ballot … voting closes 19 April).

You may remember that a group of UNIS Hanoi G12 students won the Best Director and Audience Choice awards for their short film Nhân in last year’s festival.

Thank you for supporting student filmmakers and the Arts at UNIS HaNoi!

Jackson Garland and Colin Campbell

Saturday @ your UNIS Hanoi Library!

This Saturday marks the official opening of the UNIS Hanoi Library for the school community from 9.00 – 12.00.

All students and parents are welcome to use the Library facilities during this time. The choices are limitless – personal reading, browsing with your children, quiet study for some older students and simply collecting a few books from our great collection.

The Library team is very grateful to the SCO for their support and encouragement in the re-establishment of this initiative. Without the support and volunteer efforts of the SCO and the UNIS Hanoi Leadership, it would not be possible.

Some key points to remember:

  1. UNIS Hanoi students in Grade 5 and below must be accompanied by an adult with a valid UNIS ID
  2. Only UNIS Hanoi parents, faculty/staff and students with a valid UNIS ID card are allowed to use the library
  3. You need your ID to borrow
  4. Every Saturday that UNIS Hanoi is open, the Library is open

See you on Saturday!

Monica and Deborah

Sustainable Development Goals Book Club

The SDG Book Club, first announced in September 2018 will present a selection of books for children aged 5-12 on each of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The initiative will provide an opportunity to encourage children to read, to learn about the SDGs and empower them to play their part in making the world a better place.

The first book list was released last week and highlights Goal 1 – No Poverty. The four chosen books are:

  1. Serafina’s Promise by Ann Burg
  2. Last Stop on Market Street by Matt de la Pena
  3. A Chair for My Mother by Vera B Williams
  4. The Happy Prince by Oscar Wilde

Each student in the Elementary School from Grades 1-5 will be involved in the SDG Book Club and encouraged to read at least one of the books on the SDG book list plus other books chosen by the Library staff that explain the reasons why people are poor. The students will be issued with a SDG Book Club passport to record their reading efforts and encouraged to complete all 17 SDGs by August 2020. The library central display will feature the monthly book club focus.

The SDG Book Club makes content available in the six official languages of the United Nations – Arabic, English, Chinese, French, Russian and Spanish.

You can learn more about the SDG Book Club by reading the UN resource page:

Please join our Elementary students as they learn about Goal 1 – Ending poverty in all its forms everywhere. You may even want to host a book club meeting and share your photos via hashtags #SDGBookClub and #GlobalGoals.

Please help our students spread the word!

Monica Mayer

Saturday Service Fun Day – 4 May

Service is central to all that we do at UNIS Ha Noi and so what better way to celebrate our commitment to a Better World than as a community!

Building on last year’s successful pilot event in May, we are organising two events this year and the second one is coming up on Saturday, 4 May.

The goal is for UNIS Hanoi students, parents, faculty, staff, our service partners and the wider Hanoi community to connect with each other through fun and meaningful service activities and we hope that you will join in.

On Saturday 4 May there will be a variety of service activities for you to choose from:

  • A visit to the Moon Bear/Asia Animals centre in Tam Dao
  • Keep Hanoi Clean (KHC) clean-up morning in Hoa Binh park organised by KHC Community group
  • Afternoon activities with blind students group including sports games, music and MS planned activity
  • Soccer and other sports activities with children from Thuy An Village
  • Activities with Huong La centre

Watch this space for more information and sign-up next week!


STEAMfest – Save The Date!

You are invited to…

Join us for a day full of exciting activities! Come connect, share ideas and learn how Science, Technology, Engineering, Art & Math come together to form STEAM!!

Students, staff, and parents are invited to share an activity or demonstration on STEAMfest. Email Sarah Schneider at by 18 April 2019 to sign up!

Who: UNIS Hanoi community
What: Showcase of STEAM-related work and ideas including:

  • Local STEAM celebrity guest speakers
    1. Trang Tran: CEO & Founder of organic & sustainable agricultural company Fargreen
    2. Luong Trung Tien: Founder of creative science/ STEM channel called Táy Máy Tò Mò
  • Variety of demonstration booths and challenges
  • Underwater robot obstacle course
  • Lunch options provided for purchase

Where: UNIS Hanoi (B8B & pool)
When: 18 May, 9 AM – 1 PM

Questions, comments, or concerns? Email


What’s happening?

UNIS Hanoi has partnered with Compass Education (CE) to be the first school in the world to take part in the CE School Sustainability Transformation!

What are we doing about it?

The UNIS Hanoi Sustainability Committee has been developing a planning & action cycle that focuses on systems thinking and effective change strategies for sustainability. This process empowers our school community to consider all areas in which we can have an impact on sustainability, and to prioritize initiatives that will have the greatest impact. Through this process, we have been able to develop our own holistic, systems integrated, schoolwide approach to sustainability. The committee is now developing realistic action plans that support our school’s mission and provide valuable feedback for future initiatives.

What can YOU do to help?

Interested in finding out about what we are doing? Want to get in on the action? Send a message to

Library Saturday Opening – Find out more…

Hello UNIS Hanoi parents –

The SCO and the UNIS Hanoi librarians, Monica and Deborah, are pleased to announce the opening of the main library on Saturday mornings from 9:00am – 12:00pm. There has been great interest from all sectors of the UNIS Hanoi community to have a library that is accessible at times when families are on campus for weekend activities. The hard work of many people in our community has enabled this vision to become a reality and we’re very excited to finally be getting it off the ground.
Mark your calendars for our opening date on SATURDAY, APRIL 13!
In this initial phase, the library will be staffed by one UNIS staff and with the help of 1-2  parent volunteers. Sign up is now open for parent volunteers here. Sign up is for one-hour slots, but signing up for more than one hour is very much encouraged.
All parent volunteers will undergo a training with our wonderful librarians. The first training is scheduled to take place on Monday, April 8 at 9:00am in the library. If you cannot make the training, please contact ES librarian, Monica Mayer, to arrange a suitable time.
Even if you don’t have an exact date, but are interested in volunteering at some point, please plan to join the training. To get an idea of the number of parents who will attend the training, please RSVP here.
Thank you for supporting the UNIS Saturday library!

Parent Election 2019

The Board of Directors would like to invite all parents to consider running for the current open parent-elected position on the Board. Nomination/registration for the parent elected position is open until March 29th at 12 noon. Parents can find more information about the work of the board, the role of a board member and the election process including registration HERE.

Anyone considering this opportunity or who would like to understand in greater detail the work of a Board member are invited to attend an Information Session About Board Service on Wednesday 27th  March at 6.30pm, B7, room G015, Conference Room in the Admin Building.

Board Chair, Dr. Amie Pollack (whose first term as parent elected Board member will expire at the end of June) has decided not to re-run in the parent election. She has expressed her interest to serve the Board in the capacity of a Board appointed position to be determined in May following the election.

We are very much looking forward to receiving a wide pool of applicants for this open parent elected position.

If you have any questions, please contact Maeve O’Donovan, Board of Directors Administrator,