2018 has gone by in a flash! It was a year in which we as a school performed particularly well, both in the classroom and on the sports and cultural front.
On the academic front, we have seen our pupils and teachers embrace the Global Competencies approach to prepare our children to meet the demands of 21st Century education. ADvTECH has identified the need to equip our children with the necessary skills and competencies and has been pro-active in providing our teachers with the necessary professional development in order to facilitate the achievement of these goals. Many of our parents are aware of this development and we intend to involve our parents more extensively as partners on this exciting journey in 2019. This year also saw the establishment of our GoLab. Glenwood is one of only four AdvTech schools to have this tech facility, where children from Grades 4-7 are provided with the opportunity to “grow wings” without any assessment constraints. They are exposed to coding and programming and are allowed to “give life” to their designs via the laser-cutter and the numerous 3-D printers available in this venue. We also introduced the Digital Literacy programme in Grades 0-3. YES, these little ones are learning to code! This programme is overseen by the ground-breaking expert, Dr Neelam Parmar, from the UK.
Extra-curriculary Glenwood has, despite its relatively small numbers, punched way above its weight. We often find ourselves up against some of the “macro” schools in numerous traditional disciplines and more than hold our own. Our achievements are too numerous to mention in this communication, however, the fact that we have had 132 pupils attain provincial colours and 6 receive national colours during this year speaks to the dedication and commitment on the sports field where they often have to spill their “blue blood” in the name of Glenwood. Add to this the many exemplary performances in the Arts which we have reported on during the year, and it is evident that we are a busy school and that many of our children work extremely hard.
Everyone at Glenwood has become familiar with the term “STASY” - it is the new administration platform which has replaced the Metaschool platform. The implementation of STASY is at an advanced stage (the parent portal has recently gone live) and it promises to add immense value to the way in which we communicate at the school. Watch this space!
Afford me the opportunity, therefore, to thank all Glenwoodians - pupils, parents and teachers, for the hard work and effort that went into making 2018 the success it has been. I look forward to even more success in 2019!
I wish everyone a blessed Christmas and a prosperous new year.
LITTLE GLENS CORNER
This past week has been a busy week at Little Glens. Our Grade 0s have been gearing up to say farewell to the Pre-prep, as they make their way across to “big school”.
On Thursday evening, we enjoyed our traditional Nativity and Graduation Ceremony, which took place at the George Methodist Church. The Grade 0s performed their parts, said their lines and sang beautiful songs as they acted out the very special story of the birth of Baby Jesus.
After a quick change, the Class of 2018 made their way onto the stage to accept their certificates from Mrs Jansen, looking smart in their Graduation Gowns and hats. Afterwards, families and friends got together in the gardens to celebrate the evening, enjoying one another’s company and some scrumptious snacks.
On Friday, the Grade 0s arrived at school full of anticipation and excitement as they showed off their new school uniforms to the younger children. They looked grown up and ready for the challenge of Grade 1, which awaits them next year. We will miss the Class of 2018, and wish them well. Come back and visit us, Grade 0s, and let us know all the exciting things you learning about in "big school".
It’s an exciting time to be alive right now when we are faced with so many amazing things on the technological front. AI and IOT are the new buzzwords these days.
We and our children are having to reinvent ourselves all the time in order to keep pace with our changing world.
The teachers at Glenwood House and our parents are partners in education and safety when it comes to tablet use. We are preparing your children for the technological world that they are immersed in, by teaching them coding, robotics and many other exciting aspects of digital literacy.
This comes at a price, however, when the children see the tablet as entertainment and not as a tool to aid their education.
Playing games at school during class time is absolutely forbidden. No teacher is going to give a student permission to play games.
What so often happens, however, is that a child will play a game which his parents have allowed him to download onto the tablet without the teacher knowing. Other children see this as an opportunity to do the same. Wouldn’t you?
As much as we discourage gaming at school, it remains the parents' responsibility to check what has been loaded onto the tablet. Teachers do sometimes request school related apps to be installed such as Seesaw, Kahoot and Microsoft Office.
As far as device monitoring is concerned, Apple has some great options available for parents to prevent children from loading apps which are inappropriate or unnecessary.
Screentime is a new tool for iPads which can be used by parents to restrict and monitor what students are doing on their device. It allows you to set downtime and app limits. You can, for example, restrict games and social media to 30 minutes per day during the week and increase this over weekends should you so choose.
When your child’s game time runs out, they are presented with a screen telling them of this and they can request more time which is then granted at your discretion.
Screen time will only work on iPads with iOS 12 installed.
The Restrictions tool is available to those iPads with iOS11 and lower. It has the ability to restrict inappropriate apps from the App Store.
A safe bet, if you don’t want games installed, is to restrict the apps to 4+. This will allow miEbooks to run, but will restrict most other games. You can also remove the ability to see the App Store all together, using restrictions, thus removing that temptation.
Your and your child’s adventure with using tablets in education can be a blessing or a curse. As parents, we are responsible for our children’s education as much as the teachers.
When teachers find that the children play games in class without permission, we do intervene by restricting the tablets. This is not to be mean-spirited, but rather to assist the child in focusing on improving their education.
We would prefer the parents to be the ones doing the restricting, and not to leave it solely up to the educators.
These days, pleading ignorance when it comes to technology is also no longer an excuse. We have to try and stay on the curve, if not ahead of it. Get to know some of the pitfalls and providence that technology holds.
There are numerous websites and YouTube clips which will help you learn how to operate the tech you and your child carry with you every day.
Should you wish to learn more about Screentime or Restrictions, you are most welcome to contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org. I’d only be too happy to assist.
For those wishing to purchase new iPads for themselves or school, Digicape, a Cape Town-based educational reseller for Apple, has some great deals and discounts for parents.
Kindly use the following link if you wish to purchase an iPad from Digicape. This link would have all the specials. Scan it with your iPhone camera:
It is with this link that you will receive the best pricing and educational discounts.