As you read this letter you will be starting your Easter vacation in your homes, unable to pack suitcases and jet off on a holiday or to visit family. It will certainly be very different for us all. You are now going to have a well-earned rest away from your computer, but ready to continue to help and entertain your children in the confines of your own home. Good luck!
Something I read this week among the many positive attitudes relating to the Covid-19 was the importance of taking time each day to learn or recognise something new about yourself and about your surroundings – value what you are and what you have.
3 weeks ago I began to feel “very old”. The moment it was being broadcast that old people were more at risk of becoming infected, my 2 children with all their love and goodwill, began to issue me with instructions and guidelines, instead of the other way round. They ordered my shopping online, they made sure it was delivered, they insisted I didn’t walk the dogs or venture through the gate. They phone me constantly to make sure I am safe. Through their actions they remind me daily of the values of care and compassion. At the end of these 3 weeks, that initial feeling of old age has passed and one thing I have learnt about myself is, if there was ever a moment that I may have considered taking early retirement, this has gone – I am not ready. I still feel that desperate desire to leave my home, come into school, see and work with your children and drive home feeling exhausted to do it all again the next day. This has reminded me, and I hope all of us, about the need to recognise time is precious, and to use it to the maximum. Take time to demonstrate our school values. Use this time we are now going through to read an unfinished book, to check a neighbour is OK, to phone a friend you have lost contact with and to learn something new about yourself and your children. For those who have known me for many years and heard me say a thousand times “enjoy these days with your children and families” -I would say there is no better moment than the present to realise that they are the most precious things in the world.
Enjoy was certainly the term of yesterday when I read the second edition of Aloha News. Introduced by Mr Craig Scott (Secondary School English teacher), it has been put together by his fantastic team of pupils from Year 7 to Year 13. You will read all about it in Mr Escobar’s letter below, but I must add big congratulations to all those pupils for producing this incredible, outstanding, professional school newspaper. You should all win “Journalist of the Year” awards!
It has been a pleasure to read some of the pupils’ online work submitted to teachers. From the colourful rainbows of the Primary School…
The coronavirus rap from Evgeny Dunaev in Year 6
Astrid showing how proud she is to be Star of the Week!
Sasha, Year 3, really beating out his version of Dance Monkey… Amazing singing skills!
To the poetry, artwork, music and writing from the Secondary pupils. Check out this fabulous song from Jimena García Benitez, Year 8, another Star!
The PE lessons have continued and congratulations must go to Mrs Ness and Lottie and Thomas, whose daily keep-fit routines make me feel exhausted just watching them…
New timetables for the period following Easter will be sent from both sections of the school for your perusal, on 15 April.
We thank you all again for helping your children with their online learning.
Year 11 and Year 13 parents
Please remember that online lessons for these 2 year groups will also continue after the Easter holiday.
Thank you to all the parents who messaged school following Thursday’s letter regarding the financial measure taken by the school to help you, the parents, through this critical period. Your words of appreciation were gratefully received.
Last night you should have accessed your child’s school report online. If you have had any difficulty regarding this please do not hesitate to email firstname.lastname@example.org and we will address this on Monday morning.
Please continue to view the postings on our school social media, many of you are now following the school on Instagram and Twitter and enjoying Facebook.
We are continuing to prepare for the production of our Yearbook, to be issued at the end of June. We know from you the parents that this is a tradition we want to keep.
Work has been set for your child to continue learning during the Easter vacation. This will be more in the form of a project, some creative activities and some compulsory reading. Please ensure your child completes this and submits it after the holiday. It is work designed to be completed independently, giving everyone a break from the computer. Further details of this work will be available on Monday.
It is with great sadness that we say goodbye to Mrs Nel Palmer, Head of Individuals and Societies in the Secondary School. The History pupils regularly reminded me that there wasn’t a historical fact that Mrs Palmer didn’t know! On behalf of the management, staff and pupils, we thank Mrs Palmer for her service to Aloha College Marbella and wish her, Finbar and Dylan good health, happiness and success in their new venture.
Finally, I wish you and your families a safe and enjoyable holiday and I look forward to talking with you soon either physically or virtually!
Take care, happy Semana Santa!
We have now reached the next stage of this unusual situation. It will be a very different Easter break for everyone. Your child’s teachers have been working very hard to provide a list of activities for the children to enjoy during Easter. You will be able to access these via your child’s Google classroom from Monday.
We will be sending you the revised timetables during the holidays for the start of next term if the school remains closed. These include live online lessons linked directly with your child’s teachers each day via the Google Classroom.
One of the joys of being a Primary Headteacher is seeing the children come to my office to proudly show off their learning and I have really missed listening to them explain why they are so proud. However, I want all the children to know that I have been seeing ALL their learning. My computer is pinging ALL day with emails from proud teachers sharing your children’s photos, and uploaded work.
I have to say some of my favourites have been the Rainbow messages to spread happiness. They are fantastic! I have seen rainbows ranging from fruit arrangements, to t-shirts and hats along with many more. Well done everyone for sharing the happiness. It has made me so proud to be your headteacher as you share our Aloha values of Care, Effort and Respect.
Many congratulations to our STARS of the week:
NSCCU Arran Crossland, NSERI Alexandra Zoueva
RCEMA Miriam Haikina, RCJST Stella Lai
1KED Jenna Wahlroos, 1MTI, Olivia Langeland, 1LHO Elizaveta Haikina
2LT Jasmine Katebiyan, 2ARS Sonya Anakhasyan, 2FFO Isabella Spain
3EK Matilda Hackett, 3JCH Ana Llaves Gómez, 3ESE Astrid Verweij
4ITA Honey Holmes, 4ES Annie Herráez Alonso, 4SJD Vega Reinhard
5MAS Andrey Kukusta, 5ASH Yohan Le Carvennec, 5BWA Yousef Toubah
6PSM Khadija Faiq, 6WA Victoria Goryachkina, 6CST Marina De León García
Srta Ana: Y5 Mario Egea Muñoz, Y6 Jimena Aguilar del Río
Don Diego: Y5 Elena Fajardo Ventaja, Y6 Marina de León García
Don David: Y2 Sara Alonso García, Y3 Marcos Esteban Roldán, Y4 Sofía Davison Violina
Srta Laura: Y2 Zeyn Müller, Y3 Fernando Fay Pérez, Y4 Daniel O’Hayon
Srta Encarnita: Nursery Matías Gil Manolitsis, Reception Yasmine Abdeselam, Y1 Mark Moiseev, Y2 Ana Giulia Sirejacob, Y3 Matilda Hackett
Srta Rosa: Nursery Mateo Espinosa Viale, Reception: Amaro Gutiérrez Pérez,
Y1 Milana Vaiciulyte, Y2 Oscar Höglund,Y3 Max Wu.
Srta Sylvia: Y4 Daniel Belov, Y5 Mateja Stefanovic, Y6 Maia McDermott
Srta Antoinette: Y4 Morgane Matter, Y5 Petr Kudyakov, Y6 Savannah Rodoni
Mrs Salmon’s Special Distance Learning Awards
3EK Luca McDermott for completing his Maths tasks very quickly but accurately and with lots of enthusiasm.
The Spring Reports have been published yesterday and are available on the Parent Portal (REPORTS Spring Term 2019/2020).
Inter House, Spring Term results
Granada – 935
Cordoba – 906
Sevilla – 803
I wish you all a safe family time at Easter.
Aloha Value – EFFORT
Personal Goal – COOPERATION
I would like to start this week’s newsletter by thanking you, your children and my colleagues for your efforts during these difficult times. When we heard that Spain was going on lockdown, we never imagined the extent of this global issue. Let’s continue to work together! I have no doubt that we will get through this.
When we started online learning, I was confident everything was going to be great. Why would I be worried? We already use Google Classroom, students are great with technology and our staff teach to the highest standards.
I managed to talk to heads of other international secondary schools in Asia who had to start teaching online due to the spread of Covid-19 in their countries. One thing was clear after my research and conversations with other professionals – there was not enough evidence which could help me decide what the best approach would be in this unprecedented situation. I, however, knew what I did not want to happen and that was having students sitting in front of a screen all day. Our school, fortunately, has the facilities, equipment, technology and resources to have students working online all day if we wanted.
Over the last three weeks, we have had time to analyse and reflect on the current situation. We have a better idea of where we want to go and achieve in the future with respect to online learning. I still reject the idea of having your children in front of a computer all day. However, I understand that it is time now to get students back to a more ‘normal’ routine, particularly students in KS3.
From 20 April, all students will follow their regular timetables. There will be online lessons every day as well as tasks set in Google classrooms to complete throughout the week. We have thought carefully about screen time and the importance of physical and mental health. Before we start the summer term, you will receive further details and a copy of the new timetable your son/daughter will follow from 20 April.
As I said before, physical and mental health are as important as any piece of work our students do in any subject. The pastoral department is delighted to announce Aloha’s online Mental Health Hub for students and parents. The hub is designed to provide links to trusted and safe online resources, apps, videos and books on a whole host of mental health issues. All of the links on the hub are hyperlinked and the resources are just a click away. Now more than ever, we want to ensure that our students are nurturing their mental health and we hope that the hub enables them to do this in the comfort of their own home. The link to the hub will be posted in all of the Google Classrooms early next week. Please click here to access the hub.
During the Easter holidays, with students stuck at home and not travelling, we are providing activities for your children to complete. We have prepared activities which hopefully will inspire students to see the connection with the outside world. We hope they discuss these activities with each other and help each other constructively. Some of the activities will encourage them to communicate with family and friends virtually and even with other parts of the world virtually. All tasks will be posted in their subject Google Classrooms on Monday.
Last but not least, I would like to talk about another great achievement by our young media studies students. They have managed to produce another outstanding school newspaper in the current circumstances. Mrs Batchelor and I could not believe it when we read it last night! It is truly amazing! I would like to thank Mr Scott for driving this project so diligently and professionally. Please click here to read ALOHA NEWS 2nd EDITION.
I hope you have a wonderful Easter break.