December - January Newsletter

Dear PAS Community:

Now that we have arrived at the mid-point of the 2017-2018 school year, it is with pleasure that we can reflect back on the great achievements made thus far in the “4 Pillars 4 the Future” strategic plan.  Many of these are clearly visible, such as the installation of 281 solar panels, reinforcing our commitment to the Ecology Pillar.   Another is the installation of the electronic louvers and athletic floor in the gymnasium, supporting our Sports Pillar.  Some of the achievements are less visible but equally important.  In the Curriculum and Instruction Pillar it’s important to highlight the efforts underway with the implementation of the Middle Years Program in Middle School, the Primary Years Program in Primary School, and the participation of all the teaching staff in the Tri-Association Conference.  Finally, we have signed a contract to host the Costa Rica Google Summit in February 2018, supporting our Technology Pillar.

During the upcoming break, representatives from 18 areas of our institution will report on all of their achievements, which I will be sharing with you in the first newsletter of 2018.

It’s important to highlight as well the 2017 PAS Festival held in November in which all grade levels developed activities to raise funds for their Service Learning projects.  The attendance was very high of both the PAS community and various schools that participated in the sports activities, in which we achieved very positive results for our community.

I’m pleased to see so many happy faces during these weeks, and I recognize the great efforts that are being made by the students, staff and families to achieve their goals during this school year.

I hope that you enjoy the upcoming holidays with your loved ones, and that the New Year is one filled with peace.

We look forward to seeing you in January, full of energy and enthusiasm to continue working together during the second half of the school year.

Best,
Elizabeth Head
General Director

PAS Festival

During the PAS Festival held in November all grade levels developed activities to raise funds for their Service Learning projects.  The attendance was very high of both the PAS community and various schools that participated in the sports activities, in which we achieved very positive results for our community.

Special Needs Week

We had a mask campaign during Special Needs Week. The use of masks sparked debates within the classes on the subject of equality, revolving around the topic that even though all of us look different, we all have similarities.

NHS Concert

NHS Concert – British Edition

Raised

¢832,000

In benefit of TELETON

THANK YOU!

Masquerade Parade

Students in third grade have been studying about folktales, legends and Masquerades. We had a “cimarrona” band lead students in a traditional Masquerade parade at school this past month! Students created some interesting legends, made some creative masks and danced in the parade.

PAS MUN

450 Students participated in PAS MUN.
20 Schools attended the activity.
4 Central American countries were represented.

Technology in Kinder

Since the month of October, children in Kinder have been using their iPads in class in order to learn different skills and to acquire knowledge. One of the most effective and popular apps among the kids is the app “ShowMe”.  This app allows students to record voice-over whiteboard tutorials and share them online. It is an amazing app that anyone can use, no matter how young or old.

For example, in one of the activities, the children were asked to trace the numbers from 1 to 8 and to draw the same quantity of items depending on the number. One of the advantages of this software is that students learn in an attractive and fun way, while they also practice tracing and speaking skills.

Technology in Sixth Grade

Throughout the first semester of this school year, sixth graders have had the opportunity to use technological tools such as Kahoot, Flipgrid, and Google Slides in Math and Science classes. Kahoot is used for the purpose of doing reviews and with the goal of verifying that the subjects have been learned successfully. Flipgrid has been used to build in-class learning and to study the subjects creatively. Google Slides is used for students to work both individually and collaboratively to bounce ideas off of each other and enrich their own learning. Students have been able to demonstrate an efficient use of all three tools, and prove that they help build knowledge. Connecting in-class learning with these technological tools has enriched the students’ skills and geared them closer to their objectives, while at the same time implementing collaborative learning. Sixth grade plans to continue using a true integration between technology and day-to-day meaningful learning.

4 Pillars 4 the Future

Dear PAS Community:

1. We are enthusiastic to share a general overview of last year’s achievements and the upcoming highlights of the “4 Pillars 4 the Future” strategic plan. As the school moves forward with these strategic action steps, we continue focused on our vision of “aspiring to be a leading bilingual World School in Central America.” Below are a few of the highlights, organized by Pillar.

Pillar #1

Curriculum & Instruction

Pillar #2

Values, Service and Ecology

Pillar #3

Technology, Innovation, and Investigation

Pillar #4

Sports, Health and Wellness

Curriculum & Instruction

– Successful implementation of the IB external exams, and the first June graduation of 12th graders (hosted by the current 11th graders).

– PYP and MYP Applications for Candidacy were accepted, and PYP and MYP coordinators were selected.

Secondary provided the opportunity for 100% of staff members from grades 6-12 to attend at least one IBDP and/or MYP training.

– The Primary teachers were trained in PYP Assessment.

– The majority of ECE staff received Reggio Emilia training which is being incorporated into the PYP-ECE program during the 2017-2018 year.

– An instructional coach was hired to provide additional formative feedback to all Middle School and High School teachers.

An experienced Instructional Coach was hired for Primary.

– The College Counseling Process was strengthened by hiring a college and career counselor.

– In Secondary, a Spanish as a Second Language (SSL) program was implemented to accept students who are not fluent in Spanish yet meet all other admissions requirements.

Values, Service and Ecology

– 14,508 hours of community service were achieved.

– More than 10 million colones were donated to various organizations like Teletón, Cajas de Amor, etc.

– All PAS staff participated in the students’ service learning projects.

– Solar Panel project approved and in process of installation. Additional LED lights installed.

Trees planted in conjunction with Primary. Allamanda planted along fence to river. Monstera planted on west wall of Red building to provide heat protection. Flowering vine planted in Red Building ramp area. Green fence planted to protect Biology lab from balls and wind.

Technology, Innovation, and Investigation

– The fifth grade students piloted a one-to-one Chromebook program that was very positively received.

– The “Badges” program was successfully completed through the Primary technology classes. The innovation and creation program (“Badges”) was implemented in Secondary.

– 256 “Badges” were completed by teachers.

– Primary students showcased their technology learning through the Tech Fair in June.

– Internet access was improved throughout the institution, and new wireless network hardware was installed in all locations.

– Managebac was chosen as the new student information system and implementation was initiated.

– Macbooks were purchased for teachers. Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) teacher program was improved.

– Numerous live transmissions of events occurred, and more appropriate equipment was purchased for this purpose.

Sports, Health and Wellness

– Successful implementation of the Secondary Fitness program.

– Successful implementation of the Secondary morning sports program.

– Successful organization and planning for the international AASCA Soccer and AASCA Middle School Sportsmanship tournaments.

– PAS won 1 st place in AASCA Soccer, Tennis and Volleyball for boys; 1 st place in Soccer and 3 rd place in Tennis for girls.

– Outstanding participation in the ACTION and ACEP tournaments: 2nd place girls soccer, 3rd place in volleyball and 1st place in MS Soccer

– Health initiatives from the medical office in the areas of: – use of sunblock and the importance of protection against the sun. – effective hand washing. – vaccinations. – lab exams for staff. – nutritionist appointments for staff.

– Purchase of CPR simulators to provide courses to staff.