The High School dressed in green civvies today, in support of Mental Health Awareness Month.
Everyone’s lives can sometimes become overwhelming and we as a school, want to empower our students when it comes to mental health, encouraging healthy dialogue and support for sufferers.
“The month of October has been declared Mental Health Awareness Month with the objective of not only educating the public about mental health but also to reduce the stigma and discrimination that people with mental illness are often subjected to.” Quoted from https://www.gov.za/speeches/mental-health-awareness-month-2021-13-oct-2020-1232
The BIS Interact Club members have placed posters around the school with tips and good habits that can help maintain good mental health. During the civvies day today, students were given green ribbons to show acknowledgement and support for this important cause.
We would like to thank all our High School students for coming together and embracing this wonderful initiative.
BIS Interact Club
Term 4 is always the most exciting for our Year 3’s. This is because they have seen previous Year 3 “Egyptian’s” strutting the school grounds in all their Egyptian finery and they just can’t wait to start learning about Ancient Egypt. We kicked off the term investigating Egypt’s geographical features, the pyramids, Nile River, Egyptian civilization, Pharaohs, as well as their gods and goddesses.
Our Year 3’s have also already begun planning for Egypt Day and have created a beautiful jewellery accessory known as a Wesekh that they can wear on the day. The jewellery of ancient Egyptians held religious and symbolic significance and was treasured for its beauty and power against evil and death. It was buried with men and women because the Egyptians expected to enjoy wearing their finery in the afterlife.
We started our Wesekhs by looking at various real examples and discussing their features and designs, looking in particular at shape, symmetry and colour. Students then went ahead and designed their necklace by first deciding on a shape and then layout. The next step was to decorate the Wesekh by using anything that sparkled including old costume jewellery, glitter, beads and precious stones that the students collected. The results were stunning!
Be sure to keep an eye out for these amazing accessories on the 12th of November when Year 3 steps out in style on Egypt Day!
Year 3 Teacher
This term, the Year 5’s have been learning about the different ways seeds are dispersed. We looked at seed dispersal by animals, humans, wind and water. Seeds must be dispersed so they have enough space, water and light to grow into a new plant.
Fun Facts about Seeds:
- The largest seed in the world is the double coconut. It can measure up to 50cm (1.6ft) around the middle! Some coconuts have floated 2,000km over the sea before they find dry land!
- Seeds provide the world’s daily food. Your breakfast cereal and toast, your pasta or pizza lunch and your rice dish for tea all started life as seeds from different grasses.
- Some orchid seed-pods hold 3 million seeds.
- Kapok is soft, fluffy stuff that comes from a seed-case. Years ago it was used to fill life jackets, because it is light, strong and waterproof. Nowadays, modern plastics have replaced it.
- Some seeds found in frozen soil in Canada were grown and produced flowers – the seeds were thought to be more than 10,000 years old!
- There are some very dangerous seeds, such as those that come from deadly nightshade; two berries could kill you. Even more dangerous are the seeds from the Castor-oil plant.
- Most oak trees don’t grow acorns until they are at least 50 years old. If you have planted an acorn, how old will you be before you can plant its acorns?
My class (Year 5NM) recently decided to create our very own papery wing shaped seeds to test out how the wind would carry it. We designed different shapes of wings that we attached to a bean seed. We made sure to use paper, making the wings light and feathery, easy to be moved by the wind.
The results of this experiment were great! Students went outside and put their wing shaped seeds to the test. They were exhilarated to get hands on experience with seed dispersal.
Seeds are so interesting and we will certainly never think of them as just seeds ever again.
Year 5 Teacher
On the 7th and 8th of October, instead of the usual Year 11 annual leadership camp, we participated in an inting hosted on the school grounds. This forged a space for us to develop our team building and leadership skills, and it also unified us as a year group.
Camp instructors came from their stomping grounds at High Africa Adventure Centre, bringing along with them several pieces of equipment for interactive and physically challenging activities. These not only tested our physical abilities and how we navigated around the capabilities of our fellow classmates, but also quickly revealed just how limited our patience is!
For both days, we were spilt into two teams, the members changing slightly each day. This illuminated the strengths and weaknesses each person brought to the team dynamic, and how they could be utilised to ultimately bring the teams to victory. At the end of each day, a winning team, as well as an outstanding leader and camper were chosen. Through games such as “red light, green light”’ with a teddy bear (this stirred an uproar of frustration!), as well as “pool noodle hockey” and a spin on the popular “musical chairs” game, we were able to establish and nurture new ways of communication.
There was an abundance of mind-bending tasks that tested our trust in each other’s abilities, as well as in ourselves. The skill to integrate oneself into team environments was introduced to us, driven by games that included illustrating a story out of a random assortment of picture cards and constructing a sailboat out of geometric wooden pieces. Whether we were human chess pieces or building strange structures with melting marshmallows and brittle spaghetti straws, one thing was for certain: we couldn’t have grown closer as a class after that week.
Yes, we embarked on this inting with the intention of becoming confident leaders, a goal we certainly achieved! However, we also came out as stronger teammates and more self-assured individuals. Communication and trust were qualities that we learned are vital to becoming a valuable team member; also, the skill to be able to listen and follow, as well as to lead. But most importantly, I believe we were reminded of how our individual uniqueness and defining qualities can be used to realise and achieve a common goal.
Year 11 Student and 2022 SRC Member
On Thursday and Friday last week, the Year 7 and 8 students participated in the Banango Traders Business Simulation Game run in affiliation with the Johannesburg School of Finance. This initiative is a great opportunity for students to improve and test their business knowledge by running a virtual business.
The event brought out our students’ competitive nature as they competed in teams against one another in order to generate the highest profit. Many congratulations to the teams in each year group that won and the Year 7s for making the most profit out of the two groups.
“The business stimulation taught us the importance of quick thinking and taking risks in business,” is just one of the examples of positive feedback that was received by the students.
The students undoubtedly left with a first-hand appreciation for entrepreneurs and a new, energetic enthusiasm for starting their own businesses. We definitely have a couple of budding entrepreneurs amongst this group!
High School Business Studies Teacher
For the past two weeks, the Year 4s have been learning more about Measurement. This included Length (mm, cm, m and km), Mass (g and kg), Capacity (ml and L) and Volume.
We’ve covered the following content:
- Choosing and using metric units
- Their abbreviations
- Reading scales and intervals
“It is not what you do for your children, but what you have taught them to do for themselves that will make them successful human beings.” – Ann Landers
Students got the opportunity this week to apply their knowledge and skills that they’ve learned with some practical, hands-on activities. They had to make use of various measuring equipment such as an/a:
- Analogue kitchen scale
- Digital kitchen scale
- Digital bathroom scale
- Measuring tape
- Industrial measuring tape
- Measuring cups and spoons
Take a look at some of the wonderful, fun photos taken of them in action and practically applying what they have learned.
Ria du Plessis
Year 4 Teacher and Coordinator
Towards the end of last term, the Year 5’s began to explore the life cycle of plants, and investigated which factors are needed in order for a seed to begin to germinate, as well as what happens in the beginning stages of a plant’s life! We conducted an experiment where we gave two batches of seeds warmth and water, but only gave one batch of seeds air. Through this investigation, we learnt that seeds need all three factors, water, warmth AND air to germinate, as the seeds with air began to germinate, while the other batch did not!
Just before the holidays, the Year 5’s “planted” their very own bean seeds in a clear jar with paper towel and some water. The seeds were left in a nice sunny, warm spot and given water when needed. On return to school, the kids were thrilled to see just how much their bean babies had grown! By the end of the holidays, all the seed coats had split open, most had grown in intricate series of roots, and a few had even grown a tall shoot with the first two leaves! After such an eventful introduction to the topic of plant life cycles, we just can’t wait to see what else we will be learning about our wonderful world in Science this term!
Year 5 Teacher
The 2021 Matric Dance was a night not to be forgotten. It was a lovely end for our Matric Class, and an unforgettable sendoff before the start of our exam season. The Aquarium could not have been a more invigorating and mystical venue for such a night, and the presence of the varying sea creatures left most of us in awe. The food provided by the aquarium was delicious and inclusive for everybody, and left everybody satisfied. Lots of dancing and smiles were the biggest take-away of the night, and it was highly enjoyable for all.
Written by Matric student – Gabrielle Luyt
On Friday the 17th of September, the matrics of 2021 attended the formal Matric Farewell. It was hosted at the aquarium and although a different location it was certainly unique! It was so special seeing everyone arrive with their fancy cars, and beautiful dresses and suits, and we had Mr Swart, the teachers, some Year 11s and the parents awaiting our arrival. It was nerve wracking walking up but all the cheers and familiar faces definitely helped!
We soon said goodbye to the parents and began our night inside. There was a professional photographer there and she did an amazing job taking all the pictures and really making them look beautiful. We took lots of pictures in front of the huge shark tanks, and the fishes and sharks accompanied us in the background of most of our photos! She made us all feel really comfortable and I’m sure we’ve got photos no other matric dance has gotten before!
After photos, we stepped into the hall where we would be having dinner. There were round tables positioned throughout the room and they were decorated beautifully and elegantly. The matrics were treated with a buffet of food options, drinks and delicious desserts. I was definitely full at the end of the night! Our favourite, chosen music played throughout the evening and a large portion of our night was spent dancing together as a year group and having fun as our last night together!
Overall I had a lovely time at the Matric farewell and I’m glad I got to spend the night with my peers. It was definitely a special night, and one I will not forget!
Written by Matric student – Chloë Goldman
Although things looked a little different at BIS this term, we are so fortunate that our students were able to attend school for the majority of the term. Thank you to everyone who supported the staff and students through this journey.
We will continue to ensure that the curriculum is comprehensively covered, ensuring that we stay on track for the rest of the academic year.
Our sincere thanks go to the teachers for all their hard work with the planning and delivery of the online lessons, as well as the teaching of the students in the classroom.
On Wednesday, we held a special Valedictory & Prize-Giving Awards Ceremony on the school campus for the Matric Class of 2021, joined online by students and parents. Ceremonies like this one enable us to pause as we recognize, acknowledge, and celebrate our students’ success and development.
We also had the pleasure of announcing the 2022 SRC Leadership Team:
We are so incredibly proud of all the year 11 students who nominated themselves and gave speeches a few weeks ago. Whether they have received a formal position or not, they will all be incredible leaders for our school in 2022. I have no doubt that they will work hard to make our school an even better place by upholding our school’s values throughout the year.
This holiday is a short one, and I hope that you have time to rest and recuperate.
We look forward to welcoming our students back to school on Wednesday, 29th September.
Carmen de Villiers
High School Coordinator
Year 4 students enjoyed a lovely morning of team building to end the term. Coach Fabein from FP Sports and his team of professional coaches organised some fun activities for the classes to complete in a Round Robin competition. The students had a great time and Mrs du Plessis’ class won the challenge overall.
We would like to thank our wonderful team of coaches for the care and support that they show our students every day. We look forward to a well-deserved holiday and to come back refreshed and ready in Term 4.
Year 4 Teacher