Photo credit to: www.calendarlabs.com
In a few days, I will get to welcome both familiar and new students at CISM. It has been a delight planning the school year with a dynamic and very enthusiastic set of colleagues and we have all been preparing to deliver interesting interactive lessons for both Middle and High School classes. I am fortunate to be part of two departments this year: Social Studies and Modern Languages.
The Social Studies Department welcomes two new faculty members this year. Matt (Matthew) Hankins will be teaching Social Studies for Grades 6, 7ES and 9 while Yom (Gerome) Vedeja will be handling the Social Studies class for Grade 8 and IB Economics. I am also pleased to let you know that we are offering core Electives classes for the first time at CISM, which includes Geography for Middle School (under Matt) and Economics for Upper School (under Yom). Our goal is to encourage interest and orient students on IB Group 3 subjects and hopefully expand our offerings to include IB Geography or IB History in the future.
As for me, I will be teaching Social Studies Grade 7MS, Grade 10 Social Studies, Spanish I (for Grades 9 and 10) and Spanish Ab Initio (for Grade 11). This is my first year to teach Spanish at CISM, though I have already taught Spanish Ab Initio at another school. Most Grade 9 and 10 students may have solely known me from Social Studies classes two years ago, so it may come as a surprise (and I hope it’s a pleasant one) to see me in their Spanish classes.
This year, I hope to encourage my students in Social Studies to evaluate, and if necessary, challenge conventional thinking. This can be done through a thorough analysis of different arguments and viewed through a multidisciplinary lens. The Grade 10 students will be introduced to the scope and limits of various political theories while the Grade 7 students will get to look deeper into historical events, going beyond the facts of an issue. In the same way, Spanish I and Spanish Ab Initio students will be challenged to express their ideas in a different language and understand how Spanish speakers see the world.
Our department is also in charge of UN Day, which will be held on October 19 this year. What makes UN Day interesting this year is that while we are celebrating the diversity of CISM’s population and commemorating the establishment of the United Nations, we are also celebrating Spanish National Day or Dia de Hispanidad (October 12) and Deepavali/Diwali (November 7). We have a set of activities lined up during that day for the whole community and parents are always welcome to attend. I look forward to meeting all of you during our events or at any time you wish to visit the school.