School Blog

From the Principal

The sun is back in Uppsala

The sun is back in Uppsala

Main image: Students playing Winter Football

Dear Friends,

Today the sun is back in Uppsala. Just in time for the preparations for the National Tests in English and Swedish that will be carried out in the whole country in the coming weeks. It is great to see students rushing out to play some football or basketball on the snow-covered ground, it will do them good and fill them with vitamins needed after a long dark January.

Knut Ångström, a famous physicist
Knut Ångström, a famous physicist

On another note, the Year 6 classes had visitors from the Ångström Laboratory at Uppsala University on Wednesday. They listened to a lecture about energy and the environment and it was very much appreciated. It is great to see the school´s connections to Science and Uppsala University mean that our students have a chance to listen to professionals speaking about the subjects they are studying. Maybe Ångström awoke the interest of a future Nobel Prize winner to carry on the legacy in Uppsala amongst our Year 6 students!?

Lecturer from Ångström Laboratory engaging our students
Lecturer from Ångström Laboratory engaging our students

Until next time/

Mr Östling

Junior Club Newsletter January 2013

Junior Club Newsletter January 2013

Welcome to the new spring term in Junior Club! 

We hope you have all enjoyed the Christmas holiday. We had a very busy and fun month of December full of a variety of activities. A bright Christmas tree with lights was on display and our windows were all covered with different paintings from Santas to gingerbread men and reindeer and even Rudolf with a red nose could be seen. 

Ms Zhang organized many fun crafts such as an intricate technique for basket weaving, cutting paper in the shape of reindeer and making beautiful 3D Xmas cards. We have made gold and silver angel napkin rings, xmas trees in paper and we did lots of baking, too. In the Home Economics kitchen we baked some traditional Swedish saffranskaka. A popular activity with Mr Nott was decorating "pepparkakor" with faces showing different emotions -  some smiley, some feeling a bit tired and others wondering what mood they were in...

The students have also been able to learn how to make a simple video using a computer and adding pictures and music. Our daily Julkalendar raffle made the students very curious to hear who would get the daily little surprise. 

Now, with February here, we are starting to prepare for the events that will take place on February 14th, the Chinese New year and Valentine's day. I take this opportunity to welcome all of you, Junior Club parents, for the Celebration of the Chinese New Year which will take place at 15.00 at the Aula. The students have been making lots of decorations for the Chinese New Year, creating Chinese opera masks, learning calligraphy, practicing a Gong fu show and a Chinese dance. You are all welcome to join us for a fika after the show. 

Next month many new exciting activities are coming up and there will be lots of hearts hanging up in our Junior Club room....

Year 6 Technology Visit

Year 6 Technology Visit

On Wednesday, January 30, three engineers from Uppsala University's Ångström's Laboratory visited our Year 6 students. They briefly introduced themselves to all four classes in the Aula then each class attended two demonstrations on wind and wave power. During these smaller sessions students were able to observe the models up-close and the engineers pointed out specific details about the models and how they work, including how generators produce electricity.

Science and Technology teacher and visit organizer Ms Vossen says:

Engineers who work with the technology day in and day out can explain it from their perspective which can give students a new angle or a greater level of understanding. The subject of technology can be very theoretical for students when reading about it in books but this way students can see the models and hear from engineers who actually build and work with this technology so it becomes much more real to them. It is also a good opportunity for students to learn more about this profession, including the process that goes into the building and the research of power generators.  

Students were very positive about the visit:

It was more interesting than a normal lesson because there were models to look at up close and you could see how they worked. For example, when you spin the model it generated electricity which caused LED lights to come on and blink. The engineers explained how the magnetic fields in the copper and electrons worked to generate electricity.

- Jakob Woldemichael 6c

We got to see a model of a turbine. It is good to have an expert in the subject come and talk to us.

- Jakob Henningsson, 6c

It was easier to understand how each part works from the model. The visit was right before the test so it helped us learn better.

- Mariam Yusupova, 6a

I am glad they took their time to come and talk to us.

- Ann Heijkensjöld, 6a

I liked that they had a turbine model. It was interesting.

- Hemming Ma, 6c

It was interesting to see how it worked. We got a new view of how electricity is produced.

- Simon Brandhammar 6c

It was nice of the professionals to come to our school to show us how things work and it was good because we were working on this in our unit.

- Amber Metcalfe, 6a

"The engineers were very impressed by our students' well thought-out questions and the level of critical and creative thinking displayed by our students," said Ms Vossen. She is excited to be able to promote green energy within our school. Ms Vossen says that such professional visits from her school days left a strong impression on her and she believes they can really make a difference for students more easily understand various topics and being exposed to professions can perhaps even spur students on to work toward new goals after having an "up close and personal" experience in an area of interest.

Choice Days Here Again!

Choice Days Here Again!

The spring term Choice days, January 14 and 15, gave students a chance to learn and try new skills, see new places and make new friends. Similar to last term's Choice days, students spent two days in a row with a group of mixed age students and typically 2-3 staff members. In addition to teachers, administrative and Junior Club staff members also shared their talents and time with students during the days.

Many popular Choice classes from Term 1 reappeared this term and some new activities were added. Line Dance, Cartoon Creation, Fjällnora Winter Sports and Yoga were offered for the first time. The Line Dance group, led by our counselor Ms Gabor, was happy and thirsty as they ended day 2 with a high-energy show of various dances.

We also have many nature lovers among our students and staff!. Students from grades 4-9 spent two whole days enjoying a winter wonderland of ice skating and cross country skiing at Fjällnora. After all their activity, they really "earned" their grilled hamburgers and hot dogs for lunch! Ms Staaf summed it up:
- It was quite cold and we were outside all the time and they walked and ice-skated a lot, but no one complained about being cold. Everyone seemed to have a nice time and they all contributed to a great atmosphere these two days, I could to this choice for two weeks straight!

Ms Axelsson and Ms Palko's students in Puppet Theatre were extremely creative! Day 1: Students made puppets and gave them personalities. Then in two groups they developed stories which included roles for all of these unique puppets. Day 2: Stories were developed further and dialogues were written. Students practiced a lot! The group made invitations and posters to invite other groups to the performance.

Story 1: A farmer and a witch who wanted to win a potato competition ( much of the story revolved around the witch trying to steal the potato from the farmer).

Story 2:  A viking who was sailing his ship in search of food met all kinds of creatures on the way and finally managed to get some potatoes and save them from the dinosaurs.

Another crafty group, the Fun with Food and Paper class, was very busy making intricate paper snowflakes, funny robots and even toilet paper mice in the morning, while in the afternoon delicious smells wafted through the lower level of the school when they continued the theme with amusing, colourful and surprisingly tasty snacks!

During IESU Olympics, students participated in many different sports, including soccer, basketball, dodgeball, handball and innebandy. Though the blue team won the tournament, all teams played hard, had fun and enjoyed the variety of activities. Olympics took place at the newly opened Rosendahl gym hall, not far from our school. The Olympic days ended with a medal ceremony for the top 3 teams as well as individual awards for the best performer in each event and of course all team members received an award for participation.

In the MTV Music Video group students recorded their own pop songs (using a computer program called garageband) and created a music video to accompany the song. The end result was amazing -  students sang their own songs and danced using their own choreography.

The Historical Walk group guided classmates and teachers in and out of Gustavianum, Universitetets Aulan, Karolina Rediviva, Uppsala Slott, Botaniska Trädgården, Domkyrkan, Uppsala Konsert och Kongress och Central Station (whew!), all the while sharing interesting stories, fun facts and plenty of history!

From the Principal

New Term, New Beginnings

New Term, New Beginnings

Dear Students and Parents,

As the Acting Principal , I Mikael Östling, have been given the honor to write the Principal´s blog. This is of course a time with mixed emotions for us as staff, and as well for students and parents connected to the school. It always sad to see such an appreciated leader as Dr Heimeier leave, but at the same time it is very exciting for us all to see what the new term will bring. The school will of course run as normal under the current management team with Ms Allen, Head of Academics, and Ms Thoresen, Head of Junior School.

During these first few days both teachers and students have already enjoyed themselves immensely on the two Choice Days on January 14th and 15th. I personally felt as if I was travelling back in time for our Choice activity, ice-skating at Gränby ice rink. I say this because I basically grew up in and around all the small ice rinks in Västerås and Västmanland playing ice hockey from a very young age, but then adulthood caught up with me and changed my direction into the educational field.

When I saw our students enjoying themselves on the ice, some with their very first nervous steps on the ice and some looking as seasoned veterans comfortably chasing a ball or a puck, I remembered how it felt to be on the ice on those early morning practices when I was young. When you could hear each skate cut through the ice, and feel feel the the cold air on my face from speeding across the rink. To me that was and still is pure magic!   



Mr Mintz Showing our students how Hockey is played

Ice skating was just one of the fantastic actvities students could enjoy on the two days. To give you an idea of the variety of the activities I can say that it ranged from cross country skiing with barbecue in Fjällnora, to puppet theatre and fun food creations in school. 

Now it is time to get back into the classrooms, work hard and enjoy the sprint up the learning curve!

/ Mr Östling