PEAK SCHOOL ANNUAL REPORT – 2014-2015

Please click on the link below to download our Annual Report for the last academic year.   The report highlights all the work that the school did last year in a wide range of areas.  It covers all our key initiatives, curriculum areas, annual budget, and extra curriculum.  It also celebrates all the terrific things that the students and staff have achieved.  It is like the Year Book but for grown ups!

ANNUAL REPORT DOWNLOAD LINK

GROWTH MINDSET WORKSHOP FOR PARENTS

A number of parents have asked about the Growth Mindset workshop for parents.  The good news is that we are planning to have more than one workshop so that we can cater for as many parents as possible.

The first three parent workshops will be held on the same evening as the 3 Way Consultations (26 November).  The repeat workshops on that night will be at 4pm, 5pm and 6pm.  This way we hope to attract parents who are attending the 3 way conferences before and after 4pm, before and after 5pm and before and after 6pm.  Each workshop will be the same and will only last for 30 minutes.  You are welcome to pop in and out of the workshop should you need to.

We will also offer the Growth Mindset workshop, from 8.30am to 9.15am, for those parents who are not able to make it in the evening of 26 November.  The date for this morning workshop is yet to be confirmed but we will let you know the date as soon as we can.  It will also be this term.

The workshop will focus on these three key messages –

  1. Learn from your mistakes – we all make mistakes but it is what we take out of them that really matters
  2. The idea of ‘NOT YET’, if you cannot do something it is because you cannot do it “YET’.  What information is missing?  What do you need to do?  What do you already know that might help?
  3. ZONES – we are working with the children around the different zones.  The three zones are ‘comfort zone’, ‘stretch zone’ and ‘stress zone’.  The workshop will go into the difference of the three zones and why these zones have become a focus for Peak School.

MOTHER TONGUE LANGUAGE LESSONS

Earlier this year I asked for an expression of interest in terms of whether or not there was enough interest to offer French Mother Tongue lessons.   The good news is that there was enough interest.  The even better news is that we have found a tutor who is available straight after school (3.15pm) on Monday.  We can start as soon as we confirm more than 4 children which should not be difficult based on the level of interest we had.

Can I ask those parents who expressed a genuine interest in their child or children to be part of the French Mother Tongue lessons to reconfirm their commitment by emailing me as soon as possible.  As mentioned above as soon as we have more than 5 children sign up we will begin the sessions.  I am hoping we can start the sessions as early as November 16 (once all the camps have finished).  The sessions will run for the rest of the year assuming the numbers remain strong.  The cost will be $165HK per session for each hour (per week) and a one-off $200HK administration fee per term.  None of the finances are held by the school and the school receives no money for hosting the sessions as it is all organised through the Languages team at ESF Centre.

HINDI

We also had a number of parents ask about the possibility of the school offering/organising Hindi lessons.  I now have a contact of a lady who is currently offering Hindi at Glenealy School and I will contact her to see if she is both willing and able to offer Hindi lessons at Peak School.  If she is able to, I will be asking those parents who showed initial interest to reconfirm their interest by signing up.  It is likely that the Hindi lessons will start either in December or more likely the start of Term 2 assuming we can arrange someone.

MANDARIN MATRIX WORKSHOP FOR PARENTS

Previously, I mentioned the success of the Mandarin Matrix workshop that was held in early October.  Such was the success of this workshop we have invited the company to come back to run an evening workshop for those parents who were unable to make the last workshop.

We will have an evening session for the Mandarin Matrix workshop for parents.  Please see the poster below for details.  This workshop is targeted mainly for Parents of Y4 to Y6 students who are currently using the program but the workshop is also open to Y1 – Y3 parents if they wish to attend.  Parents who are interested in this workshop are requested to sign up by clicking this link: https://docs.google.com/forms/d/1XBVNENjmxZjXFOVib-KJ5TQc69kbzdIwykfxgq20y5Y/viewform?usp=send_form

MM Workshop

OUTWARD BOUND PRESENTATION

Below are the two presentations that Outward Bound shared at the meeting this morning.

The first presentation was shared with both the children and parents but the second presentation was just for the parents.

Some key points to come out of the meeting was that long pants and shirts are essential, all outdoor camping gear and equipment including day packs, sleeping bags and water bottles are provided, mosquito repellent is also a must, as is sunscreen. The children will do a hike and stay in a tent one night out of the four.  The other three nights are in dormitories.

The emergency number is 69701050.  This number is for the cellphone which will be provided by Outward Bound and given to our teaching staff.  Please only ring this number in case of an emergency.

Regular updates – the Outward Bound team will take photos throughout the day and then send the teaching staff a link to share with parents.  We will do our best to share this link with you at the end of everyday but please appreciate that we are out camping with the children as well and our main priority, as it should be, is ensuring the children are safe.  We also cannot guarantee that a photo of your child will be made available at the end of each day.  If the children are out kayaking, hiking or such like it may be that their activities are not covered by the photographers on duty owing to safety or access.

 

MANDARIN MATRIX-SUPPORTING CHINESE AT HOME-YEAR 4-6

On Tuesday we had a large number of Year 4-6 parents attend a workshop on how to use Mandarin Matrix with their child or children at home.  Mandarin Matrix is an online platform that the school purchases to support our Year 4-6 children to learn Chinese and can be used at school or at home.

A number of parents commented to us just how useful they find Mandarin Matrix and a surprising number of parents did not know about it despite us having used it last year as well.  It made us realise we have to do a better job of promoting it and advertising it – hence why it is in my blog!

Sarah Bower, one of our parents who attended the presentation, kindly sent through a summary of why she thinks it is such a great program to use at home and I thought I would share it with you in case you are not aware of the program.

Why I thought Mandarin Matrix is so useful by Sarah Bower :

  • Each digital book should take about 10 minutes (manageable for kids)
  • It is broken down into manageable bite-sized pieces (reading, writing, listening/comprehension, test)
  • The listening/comprehension part is what many western families struggle to provide
  • As it’s a digital program and test, many kids are very comfortable with this environment and find it fun – very little resistance
  • The test at the end of each book, allows us (as Western parents) to much more objectively monitor their progress, than the Chinese newsletter (I’m not suggesting we replace the Chinese newsletter, btw)
  • The kids earn “coins” for each test; they can keep doing the same test until they get 100% if they want (thus increasing their coins) – my boys are competitive and love any game that allows them to earn coins etc). Each class group (Ox, Piggy, Rabbit etc) has a leagues table for the students with the most coins.
  • They can chose to do additional books and earn extra coins
  • The Parent dashboard provides us with very clear data on how much time they have spent, how they have done at each test, how many coins they have, whether they have received additional feedback or rewards from their Chinese teacher etc)
  • The teacher dashboard, would be even more useful, I’m sure
  • 10 minutes a day of this, is very manageable for us to integrate into their homework schedule.  We are every motivated to improve the progress are kids are making with Chinese and we think this is a great tool to do it.

Please check the Chinese Newsletter sent out every two weeks via Planet Peak which outlines the home learning so that you can learn more about how to access this excellent resource (your child’s username and password cannot be published here on an open forum but can be accessed via Planet Peak).

 www.mandarinmatrix.com

THE POWER OF YET

The video below is called ‘The Power of Yet’ and is a presentation from Carol Dweck which we thought you would enjoy watching.  We have shared it with most staff as well as the School Council.  Although set in an American context there are some great messages.

The 12 minute video covers –

  • Coping with Challenge
  • Fixed Mindset Versus Growth Mindset
  • Learning from errors
  • Now versus ‘Yet’
  • Are we developing a culture of ‘constant validation’?
  • Use of praise
  • Persistence
  • Growing
  • Effort and difficulty
  • The growth of abilities

YEAR 3-6 CAMPS/TRIPS 2015/2016

We often get asked about our camp program at Peak School by our new and existing parents.  Here is a summary of what we do from year 3 to Year 6.

 

November 2-6 (Monday to Friday)

Who – Year 6

What – Outward Bound Camp

Cost – $4520-4620 (TBC)

This is the highlight of the year for our Year 6 children.  They spend five days kayaking, camping, completing team challenges, jumpy of jetty’s, hiking, building rafts and completing night challenges.  A presentation for our Year 6 parent body and the children is scheduled for 14 October at 8.30am in the School Hall.

Number of teachers attending – an average of 5-6 teachers per day for the week (plus instructors 1:6).

 

November 11-13 (Wednesday to Friday)

Who – Year 5

What – Year 5 Camp – Hong Kong Scout Camp – Sai Kung (on the Island opposite the Hebe Haven Yacht Club)

Venue – Wong Sui Sang Leadership Training Institute (Scout Association of Hong Kong)

Cost – $2350-2450.

Number of teachers attending – an average of 6 each day for the 3 days (plus instructors 1:6).

PLEASE NOTE THAT THE CHILDREN WILL REQUIRE A SLEEPING BAG AS THEY ARE SLEEPING IN TENTS!

This camp has a number of challenging elements including the highest outdoor climbing wall in HK, a number of high rope challenges, lighting fires and cooking their own meal, camping, hikes and raft building.

The parent information meeting has been set for 28 October at 8.45am.

 

November 9-11 (Wednesday-Friday)

Who – Year 4

What – Cheung Chau Camp (Bradbury Camp)

Cost – $600 (we receive a government subsidy which dramatically reduces the cost)

This camp includes nature walks, beach time, night activities, sleeping in dorms, dinner at local restaurants and exploration of the Island.

Number of teachers attending – an average of 6-7 for the 3 days.

The Year 4 parent information morning is being held on Friday 16 October at 8.30am.

 

TERM 2

Who – Year 3

What – Sailing at Heebee Haven Yacht Club and Beach Day

Cost – TBC ($600-$900 approximately)

Number of teachers attending – an average of 5-6 for each day (plus sailing instructors 1:4)

This involves 2 day trips – one to Heebee Haven for a day of sailing and one to Big Wave Bay for a day at the beach which includes a range of activities such as treasure and nature hunts, fun games on the beach as well as a hike and a chance to get the feet wet.