Newsletter // February 2021

Dear ESIS Community,


We continue to be grateful that we have been able to remain learning on campus and I would like to say a huge thank you for supporting our strict protocols which have kept our staff and students safe.

We do not underestimate the sacrifices that people have made and the effect the pandemic has had on everyone. It has been particularly hard not seeing as many of our parents on campus as usual due to travel restrictions.

With this in mind, we have organized Parent-Teacher and Parent-Advisor conferences for just after mid-term.

Middle School Parent-Teacher Conferences will be on Friday, April 9th.

High School Parent-Advisor Conferences will take place on different days based on grade level: Tuesday, April 13th for 12th grade, Wednesday, April 14th for 11th Grade, Thursday, April 15th  for 10th Grade, and Friday, April 16th  for 9th Grade.

Please look out for the email next week as this will include a link for you to sign up to a specific conference time. 

Thank you for your continued support,


Head of School


Upcoming Events

MAR 01
Arts and Crafts Workshop
Middle School

MAR 03
Official PSAT-NMSQT Exam
9th and 10th grade only
14:30 - 18:00

MAR 13
Official SAT and SAT Subject Tests
11th and 12 grade only
07:45 - 12:30

MAR 26
Mid-Term Exams
Middle and high school

MAR 27 - APR 05 
Spring Break 

APR 06
Back to School

APR 09 - 16
Parent-Teacher and
Parent-Advisor Conferences

Sign up link will be sent via email 

The Benefits of Being Outdoors

As a result of our green campus and the temperate climate we enjoy in Barcelona, our elementary teachers have always planned learning experiences that enable our students to connect with and learn from the nature around them.  In further recognition of the importance of outdoor learning, there have been a number of improvements to the more immediate outside space surrounding the elementary school over the past few months.  This includes the installation of an outdoor sink which helps them ensure proper hygiene and a new climbing frame for the students to play on. In addition, outdoor tables and chairs have been procured, and a new reading bench was installed in their new outdoor literacy corner. Students are overwhelmingly excited about watching the changes they helped inspire come to life!

Most excitingly a garden space was created this month, and the Garden Project Group was started. The group inaugurated  the new  garden

by planting local herbs such as rosemary and lavender. Third grader Olivia said, "It's a lot of fun working on the garden and making it look pretty."  The group has many other ideas for making the playground a wonderful place. Fifth grader Leon would like to see a pond with water features, while other students would like animals like a turtle. The possibilities and their imaginations are endless. 
As educators we recognize the importance that spending time outdoors has on a child's  development, health, well-being, and happiness.  There are many positive effects in terms of improved behavior, motivation, and engagement. For this reason, in May the Elementary team plan to take part in 'Outdoor Classroom Day', a global movement to inspire and celebrate outdoor play and learning.  For the event teachers will celebrate by planning learning experiences that enable students to interact with nature and the outside spaces. 
Celebrating Carnaval!

Carnaval is a Spanish celebration that brings joy and excitement to students and teachers alike. During the Carnaval season, which takes place at the end of February or beginning of March, people across the Spanish speaking world organize parties that often involve music, dancing, and wearing costumes. This year, because of the COVID protocols, our celebrations were a little less lively, yet many members of our community still dressed up for fun and to earn some points for their Spirit Team.

It was nice to see so many creative costumes and great participation among all grade levels.

In the Elementary School, Ms. Jimenez and Mr. Curia, the PYP Catalan and Spanish teachers, held mask making workshops and gave a presentation about the history of Carnaval and the different ways people celebrate it around the world. In the end, students paraded their costumes and had a fun time together. 

Click to see more photos from Carnaval.
Spanish Immersion Program
Students in Ms. Gloria Delgado's high school Spanish class gave oral presentations comparing things from the past to the present in order to practice different verb tenses.

Learning Spanish is a great advantage for our students as it is the second most common language spoken in the world, with over 460 million native speakers! With this skill, not only will it make learning other Romance languages such as Catalan easier, it will also give our students access to more opportunities in the global economy. 

Our Spanish program is coordinated by Ms. Yolanda Rodriguez, who has worked at ESIS for over 17 years. She has brought a unique perspective to the design of the program because of her previous experiences. She was part of one of the first university cohorts in Barcelona to study Spanish Linguistics which incorporates many aspects of language such as its structure, evolution, and usage in all areas of life. Her philosophy about language learning is that a student must learn the language from the inside. By building up common phrases and repeating structures, the student can begin to build a bridge from their mother language to Spanish. In this way, you avoid translating from one language to another and you truly learn the new language.

It is very common for students to arrive to our school and not know a word of Spanish. "Even 

though the students are beginners, we have a lot of success," Ms. Rodrigez explained. "We focus a lot on building confidence while speaking, even though they will make mistakes." Our Spanish and Catalan teachers design projects that allow students to connect personally to the material and focus on their daily lives. By starting with a solid foundation, this allows students to build upon their prior knowledge. 

Students take language courses for 4 hours a week in their school schedule, which is more than one would do at a language school. Because of this, they are able to increase their vocabulary and grammatical knowledge in the first year; enough to hold a basic conversation with other Spanish students. Because our Spanish and Catalan classes are 100% immersive, meaning that there is only one language used in the classroom, students grasp these new languages quickly. 

"Our students are fortunate because they are learning some of the most widely spoken languages in the world," Ms. Rodriguez adds. "Many former students who are now business people have written to thank us for all of the skills we have taught them, not only linguistically but culturally as well."
Students in Ms. Laura Garcia's Catalan class studied about the Solar System and created a classroom mural.
Students in Ms. Yolanda Rodriguez's Spanish class read novels to deepen their understanding of the language.
Students in Ms. Laura Jimenez's Spanish and Catalan IB PYP classes studied the works of Pablo Picasso and created an art museum.
We Are Active Learners

We take pride in the fact that our teachers design their curriculum to include interesting activities that  cater specifically to their particular students' needs. Each of these learning moments are different, however the same high expectations are in place across all classrooms to develop and encourage the very best student participation.  This month, we further improved our participation rubric that is used to calculate the 'Participation Grade' for each of their students.

This new improved rubric will be shared with the students over the next week and will further encourage every student to be a proactive

learner by contributing thoughtful ideas and/or questions in class as well as being engaged and curious in their learning.  We also promote active listening skills, encouraging students to build on the ideas of others.

In addition, we expect that all students are prepared for class both in terms of behavior and having the necessary materials to work productively. We are encouraging our students to be active participants rather than passive receptors in order to become life-long learners and fully prepared for the next stage in their learning journey.

Learning Moments at a Glance

Students in Mr. Lopez's middle school music enrichment class completed recording their new songs. They composed the music as well as wrote the lyrics. After, they published their tracks to share them with the world.

AP Microeconomics students are engaged in listening to a presentation about how businesses and individuals choose to use scarce resources.

11th graders in Ms. Morrison's American History class worked together in expert groups to create posters on different social aspects of the New Deal and its effects on women, African Americans, Native Americans, and Mexican Americans.

Dr. Boerkamps' middle school science students created models of plant and animal cells to better understand how they function. Hands on learning is fun!

Students in Mr. Lopez's 6th grade Social Studies class presented a dramatic presentation about the history of Rome. Bringing history to life is a memorable way to learn!

Students in Mr. Collins' Language and Communication class worked on a script and storyboard for their adaptations of The House on Mango Street, by Sandra Cisneros.
Current Spirit Team Rankings
Belonging to a Spirit Team is something that our students take pride in. They work hard to show their team spirit and earn points through challenges and upholding our community values. The current tally puts the Purple Panthers in the lead, but things can and will change as the semester continues. Keep the spirit alive everyone!
We do so much more than can fit in a newsletter!

The mission of ES International School is to be an exemplary learning and athletic community. We challenge ourselves to be better through an emphasis on critical thinking, and intellectual and social awareness. Students develop a passion for learning through individualized support in a nurturing environment. Our success is founded on effective communication and an engaging academic curriculum. 
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ES American School · Autovia Castelldefels C-31 km 191 · El Prat de Llobregat, Barcelona 08820 · Spain

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