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Sp issue 5 20122013

  2. 2. WELCOMEWelcome to the latest issue of the Secondary The Secondary PARTnership keeps you up-to-date withPARTnership for the 2012/2013 academic year. The student activities across the secondary department. ItSecondary PARTnership is the publication for Al also gives Al Yasmina School the chance to celebrateYasminas secondary school and is published eight times progress and achievement and provide more in deptha year. Look for previous issues on the school website. information to parents on a wide variety of subjects. We welcome your feedback. communications@alyasmina.sch.aeCONTENTSWELCOME From the HEAD OF SCHOOL 3CHICAGO A STUNNING SUCCESS 4DECISION TIME FOR SENIOR STUDENTS 8 SUBJECT SPOTLIGHT - PSYCHOLOGY 10READERS CUP FINAL 12DUKE OF EDINBURGH AWARD PROGRAMME 13INTERNATIONAL DAY CELEBRATIONS 14SPORTING HIGHLIGHTS 17stAFF WELLNESS INITIATIVES 18KITZBUHEL SKI TRIP 19STUDENTS OF THE MONTH 20 The Secondary PARTnershipTopics, trends, updates, views and news from the Al Yasmina Secondary DepartmentPictured on the cover: Chicago! 2
  3. 3. AL YASMINA SCHOOL issue 5 2012/2013 FROM THE HEAD OF SCHOOL, MR GALE After a challenging January on many levels and with the Seeing the students on stage each night in Chicago, talking external exams now behind us, it is heartening to reflect to them on International Day, hearing about the amazing on the hugely positive month of February. With Valentines experiences they have had on their trips away tells me that Day, our thoughts have been focused on “love”, kindness such affection is reciprocated. towards others, and respect in school. This mutual respect and commitment to ensure the students have the best learning experiences are among We have had the outstanding success of the secondary the features which make us stand out from other schools. drama production Chicago, a colourful and patriotic International Day, the fundraising Bake Sale for World Al Yasmina has a great heart, in its leadership, its staff, its Challenge, the ski trip to Austria and educational visits this parents and students and I am immensely proud of all that month, to name but a few highlights from the calendar. we continue to achieve together. The success of these events is dependent on the passion of the people involved and it is clear to me that the staff at “If everyone is moving Al Yasmina have a huge affection for the students and want forward together, then to provide every opportunity for them to enjoy their time success takes care of here. itself” - Henry Ford 3
  4. 4. AL YASMINA SCHOOL issue 5 2012/2013CHICAGO MUSICAL“BEST SHOW YET”After a sold-out four-night run last month the ‘razzle-dazzle’performance of Chicago earned rave reviews. Almost 200people a night entered the 1920s jazz bar that was, by day, thesports hall, and were wowed by a professional and compellingshow by some of Al Yasmina’s most talented performers.“It’s been by far the best show to date,” says Mrs Hetherington,Head of Drama. “The feedback from the audience was that itwas the most professional show we have put on.”The students performed the school stage version of the hitBroadway musical set in 1920s Chicago in which Roxie Hart(Holly O’Shea) ends up in prison after shooting her lover. Alongwith nightclub performer turned double-murderess VelmaKelly (role shared by Nicole Crighton and Mallory de Man) andsmooth-talking lawyer Billy Flynn (Hassan Al Asmawi), shepulls every trick in the book to get off death row and out into thelimelight of the roaring 20’s.“The audience really received it well,” Mrs Hetherington says.“A local Emirati student, Hassan, was cast in his second leadrole and there were all nationalities of students in the chorusalso. That’s really positive. We also had two cast members whohave never been on stage before – Ryan, who played Amos, andHolly, who played Roxie.” The splitting of the lead role of Velma,a vocally demanding role, between Nicole and Mallory alsoworked well. “They were absolutely brilliant.”A live band comprising both teachers from the school andperipatetic instrumental teachers added an authentic touch andworked with the Jazz setting to create an ambience true to theshow.Mrs Hetherington is sorry to be losing the Year 13s this yearwho have been performing with the Drama department since2010, but says there are talented students coming throughthe ranks to take on bigger roles each year. “The Dramadepartment has got stronger and stronger every year and weare getting a more professional cast for each show. This is ourbest cast by far to date.”Auditions started in September and the cast rehearsed twice aweek for four months. Although tired at the end of the show, thecast “absolutely loved it,” she says.Special thanks go to Year 13 student Emily Prest who acted aco-director, helping to share the load with Mrs Hetherington. ADVD of the show is available for 30dh.“The Drama department hasgot stronger and stronger everyyear and we are getting a moreprofessional cast for each show.This is our best cast by far to date.” 4
  5. 5. AL YASMINA SCHOOL issue 5 2012/2013 The Cast Velma - Nicole Crighton/Mallory De Man Roxie – Holly O’Shea Billy – Hassan Al Asmawi Amos – Ryan Sayegh Mama – Emily Simpson Mary Sunshine – Alex McMillan Cell Block Tango/Billy’s Girls Emily Prest, Lina Mohamed, Nicola Burgess, Rida Khan, Raseel Abu Hassan, Florence Atkins, Jess McMillan Master Of Ceremonies – Teo Elsmore Bandleader – Edward Drew Go to Hell Kitty – Laila Moukhtar Reporters – Roxy Gardiner, Ramya Iyer, Claire McManamon-Purtell, Elena Castillo Guijarro, Maddison Hedges, Khamis Al Hinai, Laila Moukhtar Fred Casel - Tehara Moonemalle Roxie Boys/Quartet/Chorus Ali Al Hashmi, Edward Drew, Ramya Iyer, Khamis Al Hinai, Emily Prest, Florence Atkins, Hannah Green, Samali Weerasekera, Dana Said, Jessica Rae, Michael Franks, Zain Mustafa Judge/Sergeant Fogarty – Hannah Green Backstage Crew – Faris, Yea Inn, Sarah, Jess, Katta, Jatarpa, Alex, Ryan, Derek 5
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  8. 8. AL YASMINA SCHOOL issue 5 2012/2013SENIOR SUBJECT SELECTION A TEAM EFFORT It’s that time of the year again, when senior students must make important decisions about the subjects they will take for GCSEs and A Levels. While their choices were determined and submitted two weeks ago, staff have been working behind the scenes for months to make it all happen. For Mr Commons, assistant head teacher – curriculum, the planning process starts in October, when he talks to a small group of last year’s students about the subjects they took and how they found them. Courses under particular scrutiny are new courses which may or may not be offered again, and courses with very low students numbers. An example of this is GCSE Graphics which is currently running in Year 11, but not in Year 10. “There were only three students who opted for Graphics (in Year 10) so I had a conversation with them about why they chose Graphics as opposed to something else. The students couldn’t, hand on heart, say they needed Graphics for what they thought they would do in the future, so I didn’t put it on the options for this year. He says there is a constant review process going on. Another change for Al Yasmina is that GCSE students are now being offered the GCSE Triple Award Science for the first time. This requires nine lessons per week and has become possible as a result of the restructuring of the school day which has created 35 lessons each week, up from 30. In November and December, timetabling is reviewed and then the options blocks students must select from are created, based on popular subject combinations from past years. An extra hurdle this year was the introduction of the English Baccalaureate, an additional qualification announced for those students who take English, Maths, Science, History or Geography, and a modern foreign language, and gain a grade C or above in all five. Option blocks had to be set up to allow for this combination. However, on February 7, a week before the students’ subject selections were due in, the British Government scrapped the EBacc in the face of opposition to the proposal. January is a busy month, with curriculum team leaders giving their feedback on the options blocks, the production of the options booklet, and then meetings with students and parents, ahead of the deadlines for decisions in mid-February. Mr Commons is happy with the choice of subjects available to students, particularly at A Level, as Al Yasmina has only been operating a Sixth Form for two years. “Our A Level offer is as wide-ranging as any other institution in the city and is broader than most.” He says it can be a stressful time for students, and some find the decision-making difficult. “For many students, they know where they want to go but this means they have to take specific subjects and they worry about not getting the grades in those subjects. For others, they don’t really know what they want to do and so they are trying to decide on a combination of subjects they are good at which gives them a wide choice in two years’ time. ”An added pressure for Year 11s is that the options process starts a week after the mock exam results are released.“ This is a deliberate ploy on our part so they can see the entry criteria for A Level study. Many students then realise they have a lot of work to do over the next three months in preparation for their real exams.” There is, however, plenty of support in place. It comes in the form of discussions with subject teachers, meetings with learning mentors and parents, input from the careers advice team, and guest speakers addressing students at assemblies. The final decision on subjects is made after exam results are released. A Level Results Day is scheduled for Thursday, August 15, with GCSE results a week later on Thursday, August 22, subject to confirmation. Mr Commons says there has been plenty of positive feedback from parents about the options process. “We are getting better at it year-on-year.” 8
  9. 9. AL YASMINA SCHOOL issue 5 2012/2013DECISIONS, DECISIONS.....YEAR 9Euan CasselsChosen subjects: Triple Science, Geography, French, Art andmaybe HistoryWants to be: A vet.Thoughts on the options selection process: “It was easier forme because I had already chosen my subjects at my old schoolin Scotland last year. However, I have made some changesas I’ve dropped Music and decided to take Art instead.” Euanadmits that changing schools has given him the benefit ofhaving two chances at selecting his subjects and getting itright. Year 9 students from left is Euan Cassels, Adnan Al Armouti and Geethma KarunatilekeAdnan Al ArmoutiChosen subjects: Triple Science, French, DTRM, Arabic, anddeciding between History and Geography. Geethma KarunatilekeWants to be: An electrical engineer. “I want to follow in my Chosen subjects: Triple Science, Music, French, Business Studiesfather’s footsteps.” and ICT. Wants to be: A doctor.Thoughts on the options selection process: “I had no problemwith the option blocks, it was just I’ve had difficulty decidingwhether History or Geography would be better for my future. Thoughts on the options selection process: “The decisions wereHe believes GCSEs will be tough, especially with having to sit easy as I already knew what I wanted to be. It was just choosingthree exams at the end of Year 11 for Triple Science but says “it between Business Studies and ICT that I was a little confusedwill be worth it”. about.” ............................................................................................ YEAR 11 Yash Bhatia Chosen subjects: Chemistry, Biology, Maths and Business Studies. Wants to be: A doctor. Thoughts on the options selection process: “It was quite difficult because for medicine some universities want you to take physics and some don’t. I decided to take Business Studies as many doctors in hospitals now have a business degree as well, so taking Business Studies would look good on my CV. The Taster Day was a really great experience for me personally and I learned a lot about what I have to do to reach the level I need in the future. For medicine, I need three straight As. The teachers were helpful as they told us the levels we need to achieve in Year 12 to continue with subjects at AS level.” Yash also consulted Careers Adviser Miss Ariff before making his final decision andYear 11 students Yash Bhatia and Usman Liaqat found her advice helpful.Usman LiaqatChosen subjects: Maths, Physics, Chemistry and EconomicsWants to be: Isn’t sure so wants to keep his options open.Thoughts on the options selection process: “I have taken these subjects because I enjoy them and they give me a lot of choice. I cantake several different roads from here. The Taster Day really helped when it came to making these choices because it provided me withan insight of what these subjects have in store for me.” 9
  10. 10. AL YASMINA SCHOOL issue 5 2012/2013PSYCHOLOGY AN “INVALUABLE” ASSETPsychology as a subject has a slight aura of mystery to it. “It’s a massive field of interest. WeIt is a relative newcomer to the school, offered for the first learn about a lot of very interestingtime last year, and it is currently only available to A Level things that have their roots in thosestudents, meaning it does not benefit from the wide exposure questions of why we do what we do.”that core curriculum subjects have. She says she wouldn’t sell the subject to everyone though. ItBut the word is spreading, and its increasing popularity could doesn’t suit the black-and-white, fact-focused type of learner.see student numbers more than double next year, when it The subject requires students to be able to analyse opposingwill be offered as a GCSE subject for the first time. theories and in-depth studies, and introduce applicationsPsychology teacher Mrs Hewitt says she was almost for the real world. “An example would be if we were studyingoverwhelmed by the level of interest shown in the subject at perception, the real world application would be advertisinglast month’s Options Evening. and how advertisers play on our perceptions.”“Students had told their parents about the subject, and “Psychology is attractive to students who have an opinion andthe parents had come along wanting to know more about like to debate things.” By the time students have completedwhat the students would be taught, and where it could lead their GCSE in Psychology, they will have a clear idea whetherthem. I almost found myself running a psychology class in they want to continue with it at A Level, Mrs Hewitt says.the atrium.” The A Level Taster Day which followed also “They need to decide whether it is a style of learning thatgenerated considerable interest, and could result in as many suits them. There is a lot of hypothetical thinking which someas 25 students signing up for next year. While many students students just don’t get.” She backs this with the theory ofare interested in the course content, some struggle to see Swiss psychologist Jean Piaget, who claimed that only 50where it would fit in their future careers. Mrs Hewitt says percent of people ever reach the higher order of thinking –that while very few students are likely to go on and take a that is, not to have a clear answer but simply to weigh up thepsychology degree, the subject has wide-ranging applications argument. For those taking Psychology at GCSE level nextin many jobs. “Anywhere where they are working with people year, topics will include dreaming, phobias, and the role of the– teaching, medicine, law, and business, for example.” media in aggression and violence. They will also study how we perceive the world. (cont..) 10
  11. 11. AL YASMINA SCHOOL issue 5 2012/2013In Year 12, students have two key units – social psychology andbiological psychology. Under the first, they cover obedienceand prejudice. Included in this is a study of genocide. Theyalso learn about cognitive psychology, the art of how humansprocess information. This covers memory and different modelsof learning. The students will share their knowledge with GCSEstudents at an assembly where they will offer some study andrevision tips based on what they have learned. The second unithas an overall focus on gender and touches on criminality. Italso takes in social learning theories and Freudian theory.Year 13 students start the year looking at criminological theory– is a criminal born or made, ways to get rid of crime, labelingand self-fulfilling prophesy, childhood development and theattachment theory, the effects of deprivation and neglect, anddaycare – is it good or bad for pre-schoolers? They then moveon to clinical psychology and the role of psychiatrists in treatingmental health. This takes in schizophrenia and anorexia, theircauses and treatment. The final paper the students sit is calledIssues and Debates. “It is essentially the application of all thetheories and approaches they have learned. They will be given anovel scenario and be expected to apply all their knowledge totheir answer.”Mrs Hewitt says Psychology should appeal to many studentsand is an asset in most jobs. “It is always interesting becausewe will always being working with people, regardless of whatjobs we move into. Having an understanding of why people actthe way they do is invaluable.” What the students think…. “Psychology has made me see that there is not just one explanation to consider… some of them are a bit weird at first but all of the theories for behaviour have strengths and weaknesses and I enjoy being critical and using evidence from research to back up my criticism” “Psychology is more fun than I thought it would be, but it’s also a lot of hard work getting your head around the ideas” “I have enjoyed looking at the key issues and exploring certain questions - my friends are always really interested in what we are doing in lessons” “Psychology is my favourite subject as I get to really think about why… and I love that there is not just one answer” 11
  12. 12. AL YASMINA SCHOOL issue 5 2012/2013EAGER READERS MR RICHARDS’MAKE CUP FINAL MATHEMATICALA team of four Year 7 and 8 students is to make a bid for the CHALLENGEwinner’s trophy in next week’s Reader’s Cup, run as part of There were no correct entries for last month’s challenge.the Emirates Festival of Literature. The answer could have been worked out through trial and errorAfter a tough general literature quiz at school, the top eight or using a little algebra. Carol is approximately 4-1/2, Brianscorers were split into two teams. They each had to read four 6-1/2 and Carol 29 and a bit. So the answers were 4, 6 and 29.books chosen by the festival organisers. After another roundof questions sent through to the school, the team comprising This month’s challenge:Mehek Mathur, Hannah Green, Aysha Atti and Aran Quintana A student bought 17 pencils for £1.44. He paid 2 pence more foremerged as one of the top eight in the Gulf region to go each coloured pencil than for each plain pencil. How many offorward and compete in the final in Dubai on March 6. They each kind did he buy at what price?have been given two more books to read before then, and willbe questioned on all six books, says English teacher Miss Please email your answers to crichards@alyasmina.sch.ae.Stephenson. The solution and the person who solved it correctly will be“Al Yasmina has been involved in the festival before, but only published next month.with students entering on an individual basis. This is the firsttime that the school has been able to enter a team. It’s quitegood that the first year we’ve done it, we’ve got through tothe final.” LATEST NEWS FROM FRIENDS OF YASMINA Friends of Al Yasmina have been busy again this past month, with activities ranging from running tea/coffee stalls at the Primary House Sports Days to organising the annual Charity Ball. We will also be involved in the Aldar Olympics and Primary Swim Gala which are coming up next month. We are always looking for new faces to help out or join FOY and our next meeting is Monday March 4 at 8am in the conference room if you would like to come along. We have a page on the school website, along with updates on the School Communicator, so keep your eye out for what’s coming up next. FOY VEG FoyVeg is well and truly up and running now. Information is available on the Communicator or if you would like further details please email Lisa at foyveg@hotmail.com.READERS CUP TEAM: back (from left) is Hannah Green, Aysha Attiand Aran Quintana. Front is Mehek Mathur. Annual Charity Ball SAVE THE DATE - FRIDAY MAY 10 Join the school community in what promises to be a memorableThe books the students read and will be quizzed on are: night at a fantastic new venue. All proceeds will go towardsThe French Connection by Anthony Horowitz providing life-altering surgery for children through OperationThe Kite Rider by Geraldine McCaughrean Smile UAE.The Gates by John Connolly Watch this space for further details, including ticket sales,Chemical Chaos by Nick Arnold soon!Raven’s Gate by Anthony HorowitzStop the Tram by Geraldine McCaughrean.The Reader’s Cup is only one of the activities being run as partof the festival. There are also various workshops with authorsavailable to both students and adults between March 5 and 9.Tickets are available on the festival’s websitewww.eaifl.com. 12
  13. 13. AL YASMINA SCHOOL issue 5 2012/2013DoE SCHEME CHALLENGING BUT POPULARUndertaking the Duke of Edinburgh (DoE) Award scheme in Some students have worked at an animal welfare centre, othersthis part of the world has its own special challenges but it with specials needs children, and some have helped out withnevertheless remains popular and successful with students. Brownies or Scouts. Miss Stephenson says that in Years 9 and 10, the students often sign up because their friends want to do it.The programme has been running in the UK for more than 40 For this reason, she introduced a much more rigorous processyears and was taken up by Al Yasmina not long after the school for applications this year. “Students had to research DoE so thatopened. The idea was to get students out of the classroom and they knew what was involved, and then they had to write a letteracquiring new skills. For schools overseas, it is known as the of application to say why they should be considered to be part ofInternational Award, but the key components remain the same the group.and it is accredited by the DoE scheme.This enables it to beeasily recognised if students move to other schools. Their academic attitude and commitment, as reflected in their school reports, was then taken into account.” From aboutIt is run in three stages – Bronze, Silver and Gold – each 50 applications, 30 were accepted. Success with the DoEoffered to a different age group at secondary school. At each programme can be considered favourably by colleges andstage there are four sections of the programme which must universities in their selection process. “It can look good on yourbe completed – acquiring a new skill, undertaking a period CV because it shows commitment, longevity, it shows that youof physical recreation, completing community service, and can help other people, that you can work as a team but also beundertaking an expedition. The current Year 10s recently independent. It offers all those life skills that employees andcompleted their Bronze expedition and will receive their awards college admissions staff are looking for, but that shouldn’t beat a special assembly.Silver is expected to be completed by Year the only reason to do it.”11. At Al Yasmina, the Gold Award is only offered through theWorld Challenge. World Challenge is a stand-alone initiative for “Students should do it because they want the personalYear 12 students. It lasts 16 days and includes an expedition and challenge.” Miss Stephenson says her role as co-ordinatora residential service project. The students still have to complete focuses on screening the applicants and organising and trainingthe skills and recreation component for 12 months if they are them for the expeditions. She also assists where possible inusing the Challenge as part of the DoE Gold Award. establishing volunteering opportunities but ideally the students should arrange these themselves.A group of Year 12s are currently working towards their trip to The expeditions are currently contracted to Ecoventure, aUganda in June, where they will undertake their expedition and company specialising in educational trips.“They do the riskthen spend time working on and teaching in Jjezza School. For assessments, the health and safety checks, provide fullyyounger students, the expedition is a big attraction, says DoE qualified expedition leaders, 4x4 transport, and they understandco-ordinator Miss Stephenson.“They have a weekend away, they the terrain we will be in.”work hard, they get tired, they come back sandy and hot andbothered, but they have a ball.” “What is more difficult is to get The desert presents its own challenges which will often formthem to love doing the other parts of it as well. DoE is a victim a dramatic contrast with conditions students would face inof its own success, really. All the students want to do it because their home countries. There are no swollen rivers to cross orthey think it’s a weekend of camping but they forget they have to hypothermic mountain conditions, but there can be heat andput all that time and commitment into other aspects of it also.” sand, wind and poor visibility to contend with. The current Bronze award students faced unseasonal heat in their training“I think the older the students get, the more they appreciate trip in November and last year’s Silver award students werethe other components. Once they get to Silver and Gold they caught in a terrible sandstorm. “It was horrendous. That wasrealise how much they can benefit from helping other people, or the second worst expedition I’ve ever done in terms of theimproving themselves and learning new skills.” The aim is for conditions. It was very, very difficult.”students to become more independent and to investigate whatthey can do for their service and recreation. “A lot of things we However, Miss Stephenson says it’s good that these studentsdo at school, we just hand it to them on a plate, but for this they get experience in this kind of terrain as they may move to otherneed to go out and find what they need or want to do.” countries and never get the opportunity again. 13
  14. 14. INTERNATIONAL DAY SEESSTUDENTS CELEBRATEDIVERSITYThe school was transformed into a riot ofcolour, sound and smell as students cametogether to celebrate their diversity onInternational Day. The festivities kicked offwith a Parade of Nations, which saw 1600students and 200 members of staff representtheir 71 nationalities by dressing in nationalcostume, national colours, or wearing theirflag. It was followed by the InternationalShowcase - a series of stalls run by parentvolunteers representing 32 countries. 14
  15. 15. “The students absolutely loved it. There wassuch a great atmosphere out there,” saidInternational Day co-ordinator Miss Merrick.The parents came up with innovative ways ofdemonstrating their countries and cultureswhich included food, music, dancing andquizzes. Tasty morsels on offer ranged fromThailand’s delicious noodles to USA’s M&Msand shots of Coke. “It was a great effort bythe parents. I set them the task: let studentsknow what your country smells, tastes, feels,looks and sounds like, and the results wereamazing.” The students agreed. “You wereable to try different cultures and get a taste ofwhat it was like. You felt at home when youwent to some of the stalls,” said Eve Willis,Year 8. “It was really good, and the food wasreally nice!” said Makyla Fahmy, also Year 8.Each stall had a stamp of their country’sflag, and younger children enjoyed collectingstamps for their “passport”. School Councilmembers from Years 7 to 10 helped theyounger primary children at the paradeand then guided them round the Showcase.Teachers were glowing in their praise of thestudents’ attitude. “I enjoyed helping withFS, and making the banners for the parade.I felt proud because I did something for theschool and it was up there for everyone tosee,” said Year 10 student Waie Rasidin. MissMerrick said her Year 7 students told herwearing their own national dress made themfeel proud. “I love that as an internationalcommunity we get along so well and arefriends, but on International Day we can reallysee the differences and appreciate and enjoyeach other’s cultures.”“We are really lucky to be an internationalschool and take it for granted, but we shouldshout about it, and International Day allowedus to do that.” This year was the first timeseparate International Day and National Dayevents were held. “I think it really workedholding them separately. It made them eachequally special in their own right.”
  17. 17. AL YASMINA SCHOOL issue 5 2012/2013DUBAI DOMINATESINAUGURAL U14NETBALL CLASHAGAINST ABU DHABIThe inaugural Under 14 Abu Dhabi Netball squad, in which Year8 student Sophie Ensor represented Al Yasmina, put up a greatfight but could not match the might of Dubai. Organiser and coachKellie Pomeroy said the plucky B team got off to a flying start butcouldn’t maintain their momentum against the taller and strongerDubai set. “It was certainly a courageous and enthusiastic effortfrom all the girls and they stayed very positive and confident to theend.” The final score was 20-2 to Dubai.The A team started well, with a fantastic defensive performancewhich meant the score line was kept to a minimum and there wasgreat shooting throughout. However, Dubai got the upper hand inthe 2nd quarter, while a tactical change-around in attack saw AbuDhabi take the third quarter 7-4. However, it was not enough tokeep Dubai at bay and they ended up winning the match 22-14.Ms Pomeroy said she was encouraged by the performance of theplayers. “It is definitely the start of things to come so watch thisspace.” ............................................................................................SWIMMERS IN TRAINING FOR MUSCAT CHAMPS Al Yasmina swimmers are training hard for the British Schools in the Middle East swimming championships in Muscat, Oman, on March 21. The championships have grown in popularity, with the best swimmers from the region gathering to race each other and test their abilities and skills,” says PE teacher Mr Todorov. “This event has become a highlight for our most able swimmers. They have put a lot of time and effort in preparation. Our students aim high and have their eyes on medals and records. Most of all they are looking forward to representing Al Yasmina School and Abu Dhabi, as the only school attending from the city. “Last year our school achieved one of the greatest sporting results so far. We came back with 32 medals.We are even more prepared this time. Muscat here we come again.” Team members from the secondary school are: Year 7: Tegan Friedenthal Year 8: Alexa Groh and Rosa Smith Year 9: Dannielle Hatcher, Kelsi Friedenthal and Fadwa Qadan Year 10: Cameron Oliver and Milan Den Haese 17
  18. 18. JSLA STUDENTS “A CREDIT TO THE SCHOOL”More than 40 Year 10 students are taking part in the Junior Recent months have been busy for JSLA students. They have:Sports Leaders Award (JSLA) scheme this year. • Volunteered at the Abu Dhabi HSBC GolfThe qualification teaches generic leadership skills such as Championshiporganisation, planning, communication and teamwork through • Assisted with school swimming galasthe medium of sport. It is meant to be both an enjoyable and • Planned and led the Year 1 and 2 Sports Daypractical course, says Mr Smith, Director of Sport. Candidates • Assisted with the officiating and scoring in the Yearlead small groups in simple sport and recreational activities 3/4 and 5/6while under the direct supervision of their tutor. House Athletics competitions • Officiated at school fixtures“Lessons have very much been Course tutors Miss Jones, Mr Smith and Mr Stanley are veryof a practical nature with pupils proud of Al Yasmina’s young sports leaders for their constantdeveloping leadership skills, working enthusiasm and the progression that they have made this year. “They have been a credit to the school and their help has beenwith their peers.” invaluable throughout a variety of sporting events.” ............................................................................................STAFF EMBRACEHEALTH INITIATIVESAs good role models for the students, Al Yasmina staff have beenlooking after their wellbeing through health and fitness eventsthis month.On February 3, a team from Medicine Shoppe Pharmacy cameto the school clinic and checked the blood pressure, bloodsugar and cholesterol levels of staff. Teachers, as well asadministrative, maintenance, security, cleaning, kitchen andsupport staff all visited the health check stand. Such was theenthusiasm that there was a long line at the stand all day.A “taster” boot camp session was also offered by PremiumFitness. As there is a group of staff who regularly attend bootcamp classes after school twice a week, it was thought that otherstaff may be also interested. All the new attendees enjoyed theevent and some decided to sign up for the classes.Research has shown that if a child grows up in a healthy, activeenvironment they are more likely to carry these habits intoadulthood, minimising the risks of many medical conditions suchas diabetes, heart disease and obesity-related problems. Let’s allbe good role models! 18
  19. 19. AL YASMINA SCHOOL issue 5 2012/2013SNOW, SUN, PIZZAS AND FUN ON SKI TRIPThirty five secondary students headed off to Kitzbuhel, Austria, Pizza night was a huge hit with all the students, as the pizzasover the half-term break for the annual ski trip and the were humongous. An evening walk by candlelight through theexperience of a lifetime. rural areas of Kitzbuhel was a peaceful and tranquil experience. In amongst this jam-packed week everyone still had enoughWe were 22 skiers and 13 snowboarders, ranging in experience energy to go snow-tubing and sledging, which was a great hitfrom beginners to experts. Every day was an early start but we with the students. We also managed to see an evening exhibitionawoke to a delicious breakfast and 10 inches of fresh powder where skiers and boarders where jumping and flipping. Theresnow -- just marvelous. Kitzbuhel was truly a wonderful setting were skiers on stilts, along with some superb displays offor skiers and snowboarders to plough down the piste. Adding to synchronized performances.the fun, of course, was the traditional snowball fight. As you canimagine, it was time for the pupils to get their own back on the By the end of the week there were some sore feet, a few bruises,teachers but we only joined in once! and lots of very tired people but everyone was still buzzing from all the excitement and managed to sing songs all the way home!Our evenings were just as busy as our days. We swapped our A fantastic experience had by all, thank you!skis for ice skates, everyone laughing and joking at people’scalamitous falls, especially Miss Oliver’s! By trip co-ordinator Miss Jones 19
  20. 20. AL YASMINA SCHOOL issue 5 2012/2013SCIENCE STUDENTSVISIT MASDAR CITYYear 9 students visited Abu Dhabi’s Masdar City this monthas part of their science topic Humans and the Environment.Masdar City is the only carbon-neutral city in the MiddleEast. On their tour, the students looked at a wind tunnelwhich cools the central courtyard, solar panels which providethe city with its own electricity, and at electric cars whichruns on magnets and offer a cleaner alternative to fuel-based transport.It is hoped that in the future these renewable forms of energywhich help to power Masdar might be used more frequentlyin everyday life, reducing reliance on fossil fuels. ............................................................................................ VALENTINE’S BAKE SALE RAISES 4500DH Close to 4500 dirhams was raised at the World Challenge Valentine’s Day bake sale. The event was a great success, and the team would like to thank everyone for getting involved, and for the amazing cakes that were donated. The money raised will go towards funding our expedition to Uganda this June. The team has lined up a lot more exciting fundraising events in the forthcoming weeks and we look forward to seeing the whole school coming together to take part. Thank you all again for the incredible support this term, without which this expedition truly would not be possible. – by Shahmir KhanFEBRUARY STUDENTS OF THE MONTHSally Zeidan (Islamic Studies - native), Abrar Syed (Economics),Anushae Khan (Islamic Studies - non-native) Emily Green (English)Khalifa Hamad (Arabic - native), Marina Gurguis (French)Lotte De Rooy (Arabic - non-native), Natasha Callow (Geography),Jad Nasser (UAE Social Studies), Ibraheem Griffith (History),Raseel Abu Hassan (Art), Aran Quintana (ICT),Jessica Lewis (Business Studies), India Heber (Mathematics),Holly O’Shea, Ryan Sayegh, Hassan Al Ramya Iyer (Music),Asmawi, Mallory De Man, Nicole Crighton, William Ayass (PE)Emily Simpson (Drama), Emily Simpson (Psychology),Sophie Kilding (DT), Yara Al Fawares (Science), Ali Al Hashmi (Spanish)APOLOGIES“Apologies to Ali Al Hashmi, whose name was missed from the list of winners in January’s WOW Factor. Ali was joint runner-up, withDeclan Bell and Laura Webster.” 20