November 3, 2017
Dear IAM Community,
This past Tuesday our staff welcomed Dr. Jay Marks from Oakland Schools. Check out his bio here: (https://oaklandschoolsmi.com/2017/09/26/employee-focus-jay-marks-diversity-and-equity-consultant/) Dr. Marks is a consultant who helps teachers develop cultural competence in working with students from diverse backgrounds. Dr. Marks provided a full day of professional development during which he helped our staff to develop a capacity for understanding issues of diversity. We will be inviting Dr. Marks back for further work with our students in developing student leadership in the area of cultural competence.
Our seniors are in the throes of finalizing college applications, the Extended Essay and various assessments for all of their classes. Dr. Strong and I teach a section of Theory of Knowledge where students must complete a 1200-1600 word essay on a question provided by the IB. While we are able to have great philosophical discussions on a variety of topics, all seniors must complete an essay which will be submitted to the IB for marking right after the Winter Break. Theory of Knowledge is a course that is unique to all high school curricula in that it asks students to examine their learning for bias and to make connections across disciplines.
On October 7, the IAM defeated the Utica Academy of International Studies 30-16 in its annual “Powder Puff” football game. This is the fifth year in a row we have won the game, although winning is only part of the experience. The game has become a tradition at the IAM for bringing our community together, from graduates to current families and their students. The IAM will continue their Powder Puff season with a final game against the International Academy East Campus on November 9. We will start the game promptly at 4:30 PM at Chippewa Valley High School. All are welcome to attend.
Our Homecoming was once again an amazing experience for students as Ms. Rojeski and the Student Council put together a great event. While Spirit Week was a lot of fun with days such as “Tourist Day,” the Homecoming Dance saw record attendance on October 14 with nearly 400 students. Everyone had a great time.
The 10th grade are continuing to work on their Personal Project. On October 27 the students met with their supervisors to discuss their progress. Students are working towards exhibiting their projects at our annual expo on Friday, March 9. While the expo is amazing, the Personal Project is more about the learning journey that the student undertakes throughout the process of coming up with an idea, designing and implementing their idea, and then reflecting on the challenges and learning outcomes.
Recently I had the good fortune of traveling to Cabo San Lucas, Mexico, to help a school with their implementation of the Extended Essay (EE). As an IB Educator, I am invited from time to time to consult with schools on a variety of IB questions, from administration to aspects of the program like TOK and the EE. This was a particularly interesting experience because the school was bilingual (http://elcamino.edu.mx/) and I was required to use Spanish in my presentation. While my language skills in Spanish are a bit rusty, I was very impressed to see teachers and students speaking both Spanish and English with ease. Moving forward, we will set up opportunities for IAM students to connect with students from El Camino in several curricular areas.
Many thanks to the Parent Community Club for providing our staff an amazing lunch on September 19! We really appreciate your support!
Check out the photo from today’s annual Basketball Tournament organized by Mr. Hrisoulis. While the teachers have not claimed victory yet, I think they have a good chance with 6’5’’ Mr. Kardon! Good luck to everyone!