15th February

We are writers! Thank you for sending in a photo from your child’s Tet holiday. 

We are mathematicians. We can count to 100 !

We are readers. Home Reading has started! The books coming home have been self-selected by your child, so please do not think about ‘the level’. My aim is to help children find their own’ just -right’ reading books, to feel confident as a reader and to ensure she/he has strong understanding of the concepts of print.

When reading with your child, you might like to ask : Can you show me:

  • a letter?
  • a word?
  • a sentence?
  • the end of a sentence (punctuation mark)?
  • the front of the book?
  • the back of the book?
  • where I should start reading the story?
  • spaces between words?
  • the title of the book?
  • how many words are in this sentence?

(We are trying to reduce the amount of plastic we use at school, so if your child has misplaced the green folder given at the beginning of the year, instead of giving a new one, you are welcome to use a folder from home or use the library bag. )

Raffie’s Mum Lori was our very first Mystery Reader. Thank you to the families who have already signed up to be a Mystery Reader

Handwriting: K2C are also thinking more carefully about letter formation. If your child chooses to write at home, you might like to talk about the starting points ( sky line or plane line) and correct direction when forming letters.

Did you know next week is Random Acts of Kindness week – Let’s help our children understand the concept of ‘community service’ and discover ways to be kind and help others at school, at home and in the local community. If you notice your child independently chooses to ‘take action’, please let me know! 

Looking ahead: 

K2C and K2D will be walking to Donkey Bakery next Wednesday morning. Thank you for returning the permission slip.

  • February 15 – March 1: Amazing Arts – Community Exhibition & Auction
  • Monday, February 18: ES Snack Sale students bring 10,000 to 20,000VND to school purchase snacks 
  • Tuesday, February 19: Community Meeting with the Head of School: 8:15 – 9:15am
  • Saturday, February 232:30 – 5:30pm  SCO FUNd Run (and Walk!)
  • Thursday, March 14: ES Open Classrooms (Classes & ASAs etc as normal)
  • Monday, March 11 Faculty/ Staff Professional Development – No Classes
  • Sunday, March 17Spring Fair 11:00am – 3:00pm
Posted in K2C

1st February

Dear K2C families,

A highlight for me this week were the Parent Teacher conferences. I hope you found them informative. I am very proud of the progress each child has made in just 98 days of school ! Thank you so much for your time. If you have any further questions, or any feedback feel free to arrange another meeting time or send me an email.

This week we celebrated a birthday!  Happy 6th birthday Hans.

To help us learn about good and services and community helpers we had a Visit to the UNIS shop

We also had a visit to the Maker-space. Its wonderful to watch children’s creativity in action!

Children are enjoying our ‘Show and Tell’ routine on Talking Tuesday! (Its important to remember  eye contact when being a ‘ whole body’ respectful listener and a clear, confident speaker.)

At the conferences yesterday, we discussed the amount of sleep young children need.Thank you for ensuring your child has enough sleep each night.

Here’s the link to the full article Sleep for newsletters 1-2nvm1r9
Please contact Kris Bezzerides (D-G2 Counselor) with any questions kbezzerides@unishanoi.org.

Chuc Mung Nam Moi – What a wonderful Tet assembly! 

Yesterday’s Grade 4 Market Day was lots of fun ! K2C are becoming very good at spending money! Thank you for supporting the Walk-a-thon today.

Did you know today was “World Read aloud day“? A big Thank you to our Grade 4 buddies for reading to us.

K2C Mystery Reader will start after Tet. Please pick one day to come in as our Mystery Reader.  It will be scheduled for 2:55 to 3:10 on Thursday afternoons. On your chosen day, come to school with one of your child’s favorite books (in any language).  Please DO NOT tell your child you will be coming.  Surprises are fun! We’ll be playing a guessing game to try to figure out who the reader is each day.  You can wait near the ECC Staff Room (so we don’t see you) and we’ll come get you when it’s time for you to read.  Here’s a link to Mystery Reader sign up

Home reading will start after TET.. ( Your child will need to bring her/his GREEN FOLDER to school) Our primary goal is for your child to enjoy reading ! The purpose for reading at home is reading for pleasure. We want the children to read books of interest to them and they need you, the parents, to be  a role model and share in their excitement of reading. ( More details will be given after Tet)

I wish you and your family a very happy and safe Tet holiday and hope the Year of the Pig brings you health, wealth and lots of joy!

Looking ahead:

  • Mon 11th February- Back to school ( Can you please email me ONE holiday photo, so when we return to school on 11th February, your child can talk and write about one holiday moment!)
  • Tues 12th February: 100th Day of school
  • Wed 20th February ( Walking Field trip to Donkey Bakery) details after Tet.



Posted in K2C

25 January

K2C have had lots of hands on fun this week, as they tried to find out  answers to teacher questions:

  • What is the difference between goods/services? 














  • What does community service mean?
  • Who helps us at UNIS? How? 


  • How might K2C help the UNIS community?

    • What is a production line?

  • Ask your child to explain how K2C worked together in a ‘production’ line to make play dough!
  • If you want to make playdough at home, here is the recipe we used!

Looking ahead

  • Wednesday, January 3010:00am – 6:00pm: ES Parent – Teacher Conferences (No Classes or Activities for ES)
  • Thursday, January 319:25 – 10:05am
    Tet Assembly: Discovery – Grade 1 TET is one of the most important celebrations in Vietnam. All parents are invited to come and watch this exciting assembly.  ( Children encouraged to wear Vietnamese Ao dai)
    Thursday, January 319:25 – 10:05am – Please send 60,000VND for your child to make purchases
  • Friday, Ist February9:25 – 10:05am ES Walk-a-thon Annual Service Learning Event
      K2C Parent Helpers are needed from 1:00 pm to 3:00 pm. We will need at least 4 helpers, but more would be wonderful! Please let me know if you can help take a group of children to the field, join in with the warm-up exercises on the field, mark each child’s arm with a water-based marker each time they complete a lap and ensure all the children in their group return to our classroom at the end of the afternoon.

    UNIS Hanoi Blue Dragon WALKATHON

    We hope you are getting excited to come together and support the Blue Dragon Foundation.
    Blue Dragon is an organization that supports young people in crisis throughout Vietnam. This organization works to help children living on the streets of Hanoi, children with disabilities, children from very poor families, and victims of human trafficking. Blue Dragon’s dedicated staff aid over 1,500 of the most vulnerable girls and boys in Vietnam. You now have the sponsorship form to support your child as they walk to raise money to help other children in Vietnam. Please use the sponsorship form and send in your donations after the Walkathon. Cash donations can be submitted to your homeroom teacher OR donations can be made directly to Blue Dragon via their website. Students are welcome to invite friends and family abroad to support this worthy organization.

    Donate to Blue Dragon

    If donations are made directly on the Blue Dragon website, please write “UNIS Walkathon” in the message section (so donations can be tracked). 

Posted in K2C

18th January

Click here to see a video of K2C learning about letters, sounds and words.

Unit of Inquiry :This week K2C did a ‘See-Think -Wonder”, using the slideshow below. to start building the vocabulary needed for our new Unit of Inquiry.. We also talked about how we organize ourselves at school and at home? I wonder, how many of these words does your child already know the meaning of? 

To see a video of K2 Cooperating in teams and  ‘organizing themselves’ to cut, unjumble, glue and read the central idea of our Unit of Inquiry Click Here 

As part of tour inquiry into Goods and Services, next week I plan to set up some role play/dress up areas for children to explore different community helper roles/jobs/services . If you have any props or dress up clothing that might help children have fun role-playing services people provide our community, we’d love to borrow them for a few weeks. Thanks.

As you know Basti’s Mum, Carmen was our K2C class parent, and as they have moved to Switzerland, I want to say a BIG thank you to Han’s Mum, Juliette for volunteering to be our new class parent. Her email is j.vigneault.dubois@gmail.com.

At least 4 K2C Parent Helpers are needed for the Walk-a-thon

Parent Volunteers will:

  • go to their child’s class for 1:00 pm
  • take a small group of children (assigned to them by the teacher) to the field
  • join in with the warm-up exercises on the field
  • take their group to a marker on the track
  • mark each child’s arm with a water-based marker each time they complete a lap
  • encourage the children in their group to stop and drink water as needed
  • ensure all the children in their group return to the classroom at the end of the afternoon

If you are available to help on Friday, 1st February 2019 . 1:00 -3:00 pm please contact our class parent Juliette, or myself 

Show and Tell in K2C will start next Tuesday. (This new routine will help develop your child’s Oral language skills of listening, asking questions and speaking clearly in full sentences.)

Posted in K2C

11th January 2019

Welcome to 2019! I am very pleased with how well K2C have settled back into the routines of school after their 3 week break. I enjoyed listening to your children recount their holiday stories: where they went, what they did etc. I wonder if your child remembers what their classmates said? Who went to Ireland? Who went skiing? Who went to the beach? Who went to Japan? Who stayed in Hanoi?

As you know, K2 are counting the number of days we come to school. Today is only the 84th day of school. (Almost half way through the school year) We are looking forward to celebrating our 100th day!

It was Ms Mi’s birthday on Tuesday ! 

For our Math learning this week we learned a new game called Get The Gold. K2C then taught K2D how to play ! I sent this game home for you and your child to have some Math fun at home too! (You are welcome to borrow this game for one week.) We also had some fun learning this pirate songOur new ‘Fruit and Candy’ shop, was a great way for children to explore addition concepts, solve simple number problems and use mathematical language, as well as make connections to our new unit of inquiry.

This week we started ‘tuning in’ to our How We Organize Ourselves unit of inquiry with the central idea:’People organize themselves through a process to create goods and services for the community’  

Two of the lines of inquiry for this unit are:

    • The needs and wants of a community
    • Our responsibilities as producers and consumers

At home, you might like to continue having a discussion about the difference between what we need and what we want! Can your child retell this Charlie and Lola story?Today K2C learned how to play a game called ‘Sight Word BINGO’. 

Looking ahead

      • Jan 30: Parent-Teacher Conferences ( NO SCHOOL FOR STUDENTS)
      • Jan 28: Reports go home
  • Feb 1 :ES Walk-a-thon Annual Service Learning Event This is the annual ES Walk-A-Thon event which raises money for the Blue Dragon Foundation to support local street children in Hanoi. All parents and encouraged to come and support the children during the Walk-A-Thon. Parents can meet children on the field at 12.50 and cheer on the students as they walk their many rounds. Students will be collecting pledges from family members and friends.
  • Feb 2-10: Tet holiday (SCHOOL CLOSED)
      • Feb 12: 100th day of school 


Posted in K2C

14th December 2018

This week K2C enjoyed exploring shapes.

Sadly, the time has come to say ‘auf wiedersehen’ to our classmate Basti. Today was his last day at UNIS. I’d also like to say a very big thank you to his Mum, Carmen for being our K2C parent.

In class, K2C have enjoyed ‘Raz Kids’ reading on the iPad. I have sent home his/her password incase your child would like to access Raz-Kids over the holiday.

Login Instructions:

  • Step 1: Go to www.kidsa-z.com
  • Step 2: Enter or choose the teacher’s username, cmatthewsp
  • Step 3: Your child finds his or her username on the class chart
  • Step 4: Your child enters his or her password (Look in your child’s folder)

Finally, I wish you and your family a very happy and safe holiday and I look forward to seeing you in January 2019 !


Posted in K2C

7th December

Yes. It is December already! It is hard to believe, we have just one more week of school until the Winter Holiday ( or summer if you are from the southern hemisphere like me!)

You probably know I was in Hong Kong on Monday and Tuesday, collaborating with teachers from six international schools. (So this will be a short blog post!)

K2C engineers and mathematicians are becoming very confident and capable observers of shapes in the environment. This week they have done a lot of exploring, describing and sorting shapes and objects in the environment.

Ask your child to tell you about The Greedy Triangle story!

Today K2C engineers enjoyed the team time NO TAPE challenge of building a strong structure. ( Following on from the SDG week, we tried to reuse junk and not waste tape) Here’s a video of the process. Teams were encouraged to reflect on their ability to problem solve, work as a team and be responsible for cleaning their own mess!


Looking ahead

  • Next week is Basti’s last week at UNIS. He is moving to Switzerland. ( Your child might like to write him a special goodbye message and put it in our class post box!)
  • Dec 15th- Jan 6th Winter Break – Offices Open Weekdays/ No Classes or Activities
Posted in K2C

30th November

Firstly, a big thank you for supporting the Ninja Warrior Challenge.

Birthday celebrations. K2C wish Carmen ( Basti’s Mum) a very special Happy Birthday and say a big thank you too, for being such wonderful K2C class parent. This week we also celebrated Johanna and Brayden’s 6th birthday. ( A request- when sending in cakes, please consider the packaging and not send in any single-use plastic. We have reusable plates here at school.)

It’s SDG week.

I am amazed at the amount of enthusiasm, focus and the many connections our young learners have made to the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals. Ask your child to describe the characters: The Green Ninja, Michael Recycle and Litterbug Doug!

Click here to listen to each child explain why we need to make good choices about our waste. Also, you might like to your child to tell you about the tale they are  creating on iPads with their Grade 4 Buddy.

Thankyou for supporting our Nude Food focus this week. We all enjoyed the K2 Nude Food picnic.

I love to know when children are taking ACTION at home ! Thank you Hans and his family for sharing this message: “With regards to SDG we still have a loooong way to go to reduce our ecological footprint.We also believe small steps are better than no steps at all. Here are two modest routines that we started recently both to be even better than recycling: not making waste at all or making less waste. And they come out of being confronted about recycling and waste by Hans. You are doing a great job integrating the SDGs into the learning!

1) switching from liquid soap and shower gels to “traditional” soap in our bathrooms

2) Making yoghurt at home photo  

Parents, when you look/listen to your child’s thinking on SeeSaw too, please take a moment to record a comment about any connection you make to the SDG’s. What did you notice? What do you wonder? How you feel about your child’s learning? We all love feedback!

I look forward to hearing more ways your family makes a difference and works together to achieve the SDG’s!

UN Day –


Please continue to think about the SDG’s !

Posted in K2C

23rd November

Dear K2C families,

I start this blogpost by saying a very big THANK YOU ! I felt the ‘love’ on teachers day. So many beautiful smiles, child made cards, kind words, flowers, and generous gifts ‘filled my bucket’! This week we talked about the concept of KINDNESS through a story about how our invisible buckets follow us everywhere. We are thinking about the many different ways of giving, sharing, and caring. (This guide to daily happiness, though, is not just for kids.) At home you might like to have a family conversation: What is the difference between bucket filling and bucket dipping? ” How have you filled a bucket today?“. We all need reminders of the benefits of positive thinking and positive behavior. K2C have also learned a news song. ‘A smile is something if you give it away…hold on tight and you wont get any (This is one I remember from my own childhood.) Can your child sing it to you? (You can substitute the word smile..with kindness, happiness, listening, etc.)


Do you know K2C has a class postbox? Your children are becoming keen letter writers and each day students choose to  post their hand written letters/notes in the  box. Over the next few weeks, I encourage parents to also write surprise handwritten notes/messages/compliments to your child, (hide them inside their folder and then Ms. Mi will put them in our postbox.) Imagine your child’s excitement when the K2C postman( or postperson) hand delivers that letter! Also, we will greatly appreciate donations of note paper, greeting cards, stamps, postcards, envelopes for our classroom writing centre.

Lots of great thinking like an engineer was had this week ! Ask your child to retell the story of Rosie Reveer and to describe some of the gadgets or gizmos we made in our classroom and in the makerspace. ( You’ve probably seen your own child’s ‘engineering work already on SeeSaw )

Last week we had some fun with The Three Billy Goats Gruff. Here’s another video link of K2C storytellers and bridges builders!

In Math, K2C are showing increased confidence to attempt to make sense of problems and persevere in solving them. It is pleasing to see/hear children showing a positive growth mindset .Next week ……SDG Week and UN Day 

In the lead up to UN day  K2 will be focusing on waste in our classroom.  We will be GREEN NINJAs talking about school lunch and food packaging in snack boxes as well as teaching other classes in about repairing, rethinking, reducing and reusing before throwing things away. ( If you have any photos or examples of the action your family takes at home to support our SDG learning, please let me know.) How does my family reduce waste? What good choices does my family make that show we care about our environment? What is MY responsibility?

Nude Food K2 Picnic- 29 Nov

We continue to encourage students to bring snacks without wrapping to reduce waste at school but also to build the students’ understanding of waste in our society.  We will be having a nude food  snack time picnic on Thursday 29th with our K2 friends.  Please could you help your child bring food without packaging to eat on that day.  I am attaching again a parent information sheet about nude food.

UN Day Shared Lunch

Continuing on this SDG theme we will be talking to the students about not wasting food at the shared picnic and being mindful of waste. You should have already received the following message from Carmen,(our wonderful K2C class parent) for details and logistics of the shared lunch.

Dear Parents, 

As you had been informed through the email from Nathalie Grun and the tin tuc article last week the sign up for UN Day Lunch is already open. Thank you very much to those who already signed up for our joint lunch after the UN Ceremony. 

For those who just missed the message you can find the link again here K2 Food Sign-up. All four K2 classes will have the lunch together. The lunch will be held in the K2A and K2B, outside will be picnic tables where you can sit all together. The four class parents of K2 will be in charge for the set up, so no help needed – it would be just great if everybody can help a bit clearing after the lunch.
Please remember the most important things:
  • 1) One national dish per child, serving size approx. 10 portions 
  • 2) List the food ingredients, name of food and country of origin (Food Label attached -your child can help you with decorating the food label, for example flag colors)
  • 3) Food should not require refrigeration/heating.
  • 4) Food should be easily served —no soupy dishes.
  • 5) Please avoid single use plastic container, we encourage to use your own plastic box and label your dish/tray with your child’s full name & homeroom. If you forget to take it home after the event, it will be cleaned and brought back to the homeroom of your child – if it is labeled clearly! 

Come early on that day to save your seat and please drop off the food to K2A/K2B room before you go to the ceremony. 

As usual, if there are any questions that come up regards UN Day and the lunch – do not hesitate to contact me. It is now the 4th time for me to join that great day and I am each time fascinated and proud of the students and the whole school.

As part of our commitment to the Sustainable Development Goals, we will be hosting a free community screening of “A Plastic Ocean” on Tuesday 27th November at 5.00pm.  The movie is in English, with Vietnamese subtitles.

Movie Trailer:  A Plastic Ocean 
What:  “A Plastic Ocean” documentary – FREE community screening
When:  Tuesday 27th November, 5.00pm (running time – 1 hour 42 minutes)
Who:  UNIS Hanoi students, families, teachers – 7 years +
Where:  Theatre, Centre for Arts, B10
Why:  To raise awareness of the issue of pollution being created by single use plastics and what we can do to help
Please see the ES TinTuc for more details.

Posted in K2C

16th November

It has been another busy week of learning in K2C. It was wonderful to see parents and children learning together during Open Classroom sessions. 


Looking ahead : Next Friday Ms Nikki is inviting K2 parents to come try our Ninja warrior course next Friday. Parents are welcome to come check it out from 2:30-3:00pm.

Please click on this link to Ms Nikki’s invitation to see K2 Ninja Warriors in action . (Here’s a video of behind the scenes)

At home, your child might like to use this ‘recount’ framework to help retell stories after you read aloud.

Next week we will continue to learn more about ‘Who We Are” via ‘Family Skype’ show and tell . (Hoping technology is on our side)


  • Tues November 20th:Teacher Appreciation Day
  • November 26 – 30, 2018

Description:This SDG Week has two elements:

  1. A celebration of the SDG related work that we do across the school.
  2. An opportunity for our students to work on Goals that are of interest to them in cross grade collaborative groupings dedicating their time to trying to achieve one of the outcomes of the goals. The idea is that this would happen during the days leading up to UN Day, with our final UN Day event celebrating the work that has gone before.
  • Friday, November 30th :UN day (Please read the ES TinTuc news for more information)



Posted in K2C