During the last week of school students have engaged in extended learning in the High School. Our Grade 11s continued with their regular courses since they are on a two year journey across subjects. On Monday and Tuesday the Grade 9s have some dedicated time to refine goals and identify the global context for their Personal Projects with a special Bootcamp that included conferencing with Personal Project supervisors.
And the Grade 10s were given a glimpse into the core areas of the IB–EE, CAS, TOK with a special Grade 11 Bootcamp. Here’s what a few students shared about those experiences.
“I got an idea on what I should do for my EE next year, how to link my activities from this year to CAS and a chance to explore my interest in regards to CAS”
“I was wondering what kind of things we do in TOK, but the workshop today solved my curiosity.”
“It helped me think about what topics I would explore for the Extended Essay and I realised I should think and read more about my interest topics.”
I am excited because:
“I am able to choose what subjects I want to study further into and there are a variety of subjects such as global politics that I will learn that I did not in MYP.”
“I’m excited to learn about subjects that I really have interest in and learn TOK since I’m interested in philosophy.”
“Learning more about the subjects I am interested in, “exploring my interests in CAS“
“Writing the EE and getting the opportunity to explore new things because of CAS”
On our final day together, grade levels gathered in Homebases that honored leaving students and allowed for time to celebrate the end of the academic year. And as many students plan to join Summer School, extended learning and connections will continue.
Our students have demonstrated their resilience and flexibility this year that we are all proud of. We wish those leaving UNIS Hanoi the very warmest wishes as they join new school communities knowing they can remain connected to friends and this school community regardless of the distance between us.
Earlier today UNIS Hanoi presented 25 High School students with certificates after they completed a new Systems Thinking and Leadership Course. This new course led by MS and HS Service Learning Coordinator Colin Campbell involved students learning how different approaches to community change using systems thinking tools and concepts. “The distance learning situation did lead to the pause of many of our service learning activities but did provide a window of opportunity for some of our High School student leaders to dig deeper into how to effect positive change in different community contexts.” Here are some of the thoughts of students that participated in the workshops.
What the Students Had to Say About the Workshops
Sarah in Grade 9 reflected on her experience; “The idea of leadership being guided with planned processes and thoughtful ideas as compared to the act of just telling people what to do or directing a group of people is a great concept. I feel like I was able to learn more about adhering and connecting to a group of people in order to find ways to make the most of all of our ideas, effort and time.”
Miyuki in Grade 10 said, “I think the iceberg model is most useful as it would help me to analyze and see the reasons behind a group’s success and problems. I would have reacted easily by glancing at an event if I didn’t know this model but with this model with mental models at the deepest section, I would be able to think about the emotions of others before I blame them. Also, the ladder broke down the step of how emotions and thoughts are developed, which was interesting too.”
“I think every leader should have a Sustainability Compass in their pocket because it lets them consider the aspects of nature, economy, society, and well-being to effectively plan and execute their ideas in order to make change” said Grade 9 student, Hee Dong Cho.
“‘How might we understand change in a community?’ I loved this part of the workshop because it cleared my mind about all types of people I have been working with and understand more about what I should do and how I should react to different people in the groups in order to build a strong united community.” My Linh, Grade 10
“The Amoeba Model of Cultural Change was particularly helpful for me because it helped me understand more about how to approach a project so that I take into account many different groups of audiences. Understanding the underlying reaction and need of different types of people allows me to build effective strategies to make sure my project or the change I want to bring about would be fitting for every possible reaction at that change.” Binh, Grade 10
As we look back over the last few weeks we have held and hosted various events and activities that have been about celebrating students’ achievements, recognizing their interests, creative endeavors, and acknowledging their service efforts. This week the Grade 9-10 Band, Choir and Orchestra Showcase highlighted the creativity and dedication of our musicians. Please take time to check out their work.
On a very different note, in the background have been the troubling events happening in the US that Ms McGee has already written about in her message from the Head of School and which have been weighing on the minds of many in our community. During the HS Assembly today one student gathered peers and teachers in solidarity to remind the student body of the need to not remain silent in the face of injustices. Please take a few minutes to watch the moving tribute to Black Lives Matter and the message of solidarity from our students’ High School Assembly today.
In High School our students are becoming independent young adults and as such we expect them to not only exhibit and demonstrate commitment to the UN Values but also to role model them for our younger students.
Tolerance, acceptance and kindness are non-negotiable expectations for all our students and this includes not remaining silent and taking action when they see or hear injustice of any kind.
We share again with you some resources that you might find useful in order to discuss racism and the role that our High School students can take in making the world a better place: https://www.un.org/en/letsfightracism/
Or start by watching this short film about what it means to live in a community of No Bystanders and how we can support our students to better understand what this means: The Bystander Effect
This semester’s MYP Art Exhibition is the culmination of creativity produced in distance and campus learning. Included are works from grade 6 through 10. Each grade level explores a variety of media, techniques and themes from portrait drawing, ceramics, embroidery, and watercolor painting. Take a walk through this virtual exhibition, where you can view the artwork and read more about each unit by clicking on the grade level maps. Please allow time for this virtual exhibition to open as there is a lot of art to load upon opening. We encourage you to share the link with family and friends around the world!
The IB Diploma students in Spanish will have the opportunity to practice their Spanish skills during the summer break. It is very important that languages are practiced over time.
For this purpose the DP Spanish teachers have created a virtual classroom for summer practice. Virtual Classrooms are a current trend in language acquisition and consist of a hyperlinked “virtual room” with links to grammar topics, books, IB past papers, movies, news and TV shows, podcasts,…. It is a fun way, one stop, interactive resource.
Students may dedicate 1 minute or 50 hours, depending on the motivation. The more students practice, the more they will learn, the better they will speak in Spanish, the higher grade they will achieve in their IB exam. Also, summer break is a time to rest and recharge batteries, so it is up to them.
We really hope you have a restful and awesome summer and if you need us we are just one hangout message far away from you.
The purpose of Global Politics is for us students to learn ways in which we can clearer and more reliably evaluate political events and conflict taking place all over the world. This week our main objective was to deconstruct and analyze the current situation in the United States. To briefly summarize, the murder of George Floyd in the middle of the street in LA by a white police officer defined the beginning of protracted protests, and the resurgence of the Black Lives Matter movement all around the United States, and further afield.
As Global Politics students, we are obliged to analyze the situation from a more critical point of view, rather than making sweeping generalisations; jumping to conclusions. Furthermore, we aimed to deconstruct this protracted social conflict (a conflict situation characterized by the prolonged and often violent struggle by communal groups for basic needs such as security, acceptance, far access to political institutions etc.) by looking into the history of the US, and delve into fundamental evidence that helps us to come to informed, valuable conclusions.
Through our research and engaging discussions, we realised the deep rooted, institutionalized racism that has been perpetrated on a national level in the United States, as well as on a global level. Moreover, we looked at a number of statistics, such as the percentage of black people in each state, comparing it to the percentage of police brutality against black people, and looking at the disproportionality rates. We wanted to familiarize ourselves more with the nature of the individual cases, so each student chose a tragic case in which an unarmed coloured person was cold- bloodedly murdered by a police officer. The numbers and cases of unarmed deaths of African-American individuals was truly shocking.
Some of the cases we investigated included Breonna Taylor, Dominique Clayton and Antwon Rose, which are briefly articulated below:
Breonna Taylors- On March 13, 2020, Breonna Taylor, a 26 years old African-America was fatally shot 8 times by the police in her home after the Louisville police force executed a “no-knock search warrant”, due to a drug investigation close to Ms. Taylor’s house.
Dominique Clayton- On May 19, 2020, Dominique Clayton, an African-American woman was killed in her home in Mississippi. She was shot in the back of the head by a white police Officer, named Matthew Kinne, while she slept and was found later that night by her youngest of four children.
Antwon Rose- On June 19th, 2018, Antwon Rose was shot by an East Pittsburgh police officer after being pulled over on the street. The 17 year old African American was unarmed at the time of the shooting and was suspected to carry drugs on him.
By being more familiar with specific cases and factual evidence, a number of discussions and fundamental questions arise, including: to what extent can we condemn the United States to perpetrate structural racism? How can we, as UNIS Hanoi students, support this fight for equality in the United States, and everywhere else? And what specific governmental decisions need to be taken in the United States, as well as other nation-states to eradicate structural racism?
“Yahoo Is Now A Part Of Verizon Media”. Yahoo.Com, 2020, https://www.yahoo.com/lifestyle/support-black-lives-matter-movement-212256241.html. Accessed 4 June 2020.
While we might not be directly affected by the current situation in the United States, it is our responsibility to take action in our surroundings and offer support for the black community, particularly in the United States at the moment. Taking action might include informing and educating yourself and those around you of the situation, to donate money, sign petitions and generally spread awareness.
More information on the current situation in the United States can be found below:
This week in our DP Economics class, we investigated the factors shaping Growth and Income Inequality. We also took a look at the impact of different Market Forms (Oligopoly, Monopoly, Monopolistic and Perfect Competition) in order to determine which one might be best as a generator of economic growth and greater equity in income distribution.
Each market form has different characteristics and assumptions; each market form has a different relationship to the concepts of Economies of Scale and the Law of Diminishing Returns.
To get started, we played a little game called “describe the diagram” where we were given short-run and long-run outcomes and one economist had to explain the outcomes while the other had to diagram it. This was not as easy as it sounds.
This got us ready to work together with our partners on the main evaluation: To what extent is our market form best suited to increase economic growth and reduce income inequalities? Want to know which market form is the winner? Students, faculty and staff are welcome to come to B5-G29 to find out!
This week has been a time to celebrate and reflect on the resilience and achievements of our senior class. We hope you will take time to tune into the Graduation Ceremony which was broadcast live at 4:30 pm. You can watch a recording of the proceedings here.
The whole D-12 student body was able to participate in our annual Grand Walk on Thursday donned with masks and socially distanced around campus.
Another highlight this week for Grade 12s was the conclusion of their Pre-University Courses. Be sure to read the separate article about courses and student feedback. This year’s Faculty speaker at Graduation, Ms. Jenny Louvet, offered a course to Grade 12s called Poetry of Hope and Humanity. One of her students, Minh Thien Mai wrote this poem of celebration.
Grade 10 students will be attending a bootcamp on June 8 to learn more about the structure of the core part of their learning next year as IB students. As students shift from being a student in the Middle Years Programme to the Diploma Programme they will be adding to their studies Creativity, Action and Service (CAS), Theory of Knowledge and the Extended Essay. Grade 10 ‘Bootcamp 2020’ is designed to introduce them to the practices and concepts of these new components of the DP programme. Look out for pictures and stories in the upcoming Tin Tuc.