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The Bulletin                       19th October, 2007





Karin Caffin, Head                                                                                                   

Jim Schell, Business Manager / APAC Director


We would like to inform you of an important decision, which our administration has made. The expansion of APAC from 6 to 12 schools has led us to review our involvement in APAC, past, present and future. With much in-depth discussion between administrators, coaches, fine arts directors, and other school personnel, we have concluded that the APAC program is no longer suitable for our school, and thus we are advising that we will withdraw from APAC as of June 30th 2008. We will continue to participate in APAC for the remainder of this school year, which includes the hosting of boys volleyball next week and choir in mid-November.   


This decision has not been made lightly, we have given much consideration as to how we could avoid such a move. In the end, we believe that this decision is in the best interests of our students, and it is the appropriate decision for our school community. There have been a number of issues for us over the years, as some of you know, that has made participation in APAC very difficult for us.  We have taken measures over the past few years to try to address these issues. The latest move was the establishment of a new position - APAC Director - to add resources to our commitment to APAC. Nevertheless, the fundamental problems that are caused by our participation in APAC remain, with no end in sight. These problems, which we have had to endure for years, can only be solved by withdrawing from APAC. The most critical of the problems include availability of facilities, resource allocation, and ability to home stay.  


To make best use of our limited facilities and resources, we need to retain some flexibility in the activities that we offer and the seasons in which we offer those activities.  Currently, we have no flexibility. The APAC activities calendar drives what we offer and when we offer it, regardless of availability of coaches/ supervisors, number of students that are interested in the activity, or the availability of an adequate practice facility. In addition, for many of the APAC activities we must rent an off-campus facility in order to host the event, and there is no guarantee that those facilities will always be available to us.     


Home stay has become impossible for us. We simply do not have enough families in  the SOIS community that can offer home stay.  Every time that we host an APAC event we inevitably end up begging for families to home stay, then calling on our faculty to bail us out of a very awkward situation. We are indeed grateful for those that have offered home stays over the years. Thank you very much to those families that have graciously opened their doors to visiting students. Also, please note that in no way are we blaming anyone. Rather, this decision to leave APAC reflects the reality surrounding home stay and our school community.


We have treasured the relationships that have built-up over the years between the students, schools and families of APAC, and we will continue to value those relationships.


Of course, we will honor our commitment to the APAC events for the remainder of this year, and we know that these last tournaments and events will be bitter-sweet for all of us.  At the same time, we are excited about the prospects ahead. We will consider available alternatives that will provide our students with well organized and well run tournaments and events, which provide positive, valuable experiences for our students. Where adequate alternatives do not exist, we will look to create opportunities for our students. We will continue to participate in tournaments and fine arts events, both inside and outside of Japan, and we will continue to host tournaments and events; however, we will do all this in a manner that is suitable for our school.


We kindly ask for your understanding and cooperation.



PROGRESS REPORTS (Middle/High School)

Gwyn Underwood, Middle/High School Principal  


Progress Reports were distributed to students today (Friday, October 19th). If it is not presented to you, please ask your child for it, and contact me if there are any problems. While we make every effort to eliminate mistakes, we are but human, so if you do find an error, please let me know so I can have it corrected. Subject specific questions should be made directly to the teachers.




John Secomb

Music Department Coordinator


The Genkan concert series will occur in the week Oct 29th – Nov 2nd.


Monday, October 29                              

11:10 am. HS Concert Band


Wednesday, October 31             

9:00 am. HS String Ensemble / HS Wind Ensemble


Thursday, November 1              

12:30 pm. MS Performance Band

1:00 pm. MS Performance Strings

2:10 pm. HS Concert Strings


Friday, November 2                               

9:15 am. HS Chorus

1:00 pm. MS Chorus and Intermediate Strings


The Music department would like to invite parents and friends of our students to attend these concerts at the above times. Please come and enjoy our informal music-making.




Peter Heimer

IB Coordinator


IB Exam Registration, EE Deadline, IBAP Regional Conference

·    Registration for the May 2007 exams is nearly complete. IB students contemplating a course change should see Mr. Heimer immediately.


·    The deadline for first drafts of the IB extended essay has come and gone. Remember: missed deadlines may result in suspension from extracurricular activities, including the upcoming APAC tournaments.


·    I recently spent four days in Singapore at the annual IB Asia-Pacific (IBAP) regional conference. I was particularly impressed with one presentation about the “triple bottom line” of international schools.


According to the presenter, international schools have three bottom lines, all of which should be accounted for and must be balanced. One bottom line is the best known one in business: the financial bottom line, which can be measured in monetary units. A second bottom line for schools is the academic bottom line, which can be measured in a number of ways: ISA test scores, diploma programme scores, diploma success rates, university acceptance rates, and more.


Both of these bottom lines are important, but for an international school to truly thrive, they must be balanced with a third bottom line, one related to what the conference presenter called the “intangible core,” or soul of the school. This bottom line is not as tangible as the financial and academic bottom lines; it is harder to quantify. But the soul of a school can be felt and observed by the number of smiles in the hallway, the level of engagement in the classroom, the amount of involvement in music, sports, student council, and service activities, the general lack of blanket skepticism amongst the student body, the number of graduates who come back to visit, and in more ways. More specifically, I thought the strong spirit of the school was clearly evident – despite the cancellation of Sports Day due to poor weather – in the enthusiastic coming together of our two schools for the class performances and mini-Sports Day activities during the past two Wednesday long homeroom sessions.


I do not know much about our two schools’ financial bottom line; I confidently leave that to the business office. As OIS IB coordinator and SIS English teacher, I have a good sense of the strength of our schools’ academic bottom line, but I know that grades and scores tell only part of the story. Most important to me is that intangible third bottom line, the soul of the school, which, to me as a parent, teacher, colleague and coach, seems very strong at SOIS. And though this intangible core may be hard to put a finger on, it is something that can be keenly sensed and made even stronger by working hard together.


I returned from the IBAP conference with renewed enthusiasm about the similar missions of the IBO and OIS: to help students become “informed, caring, creative individuals” who are “active, compassionate and lifelong learners.”




Simon Parker

Athletic Director


For a full check on all results and upcoming fixtures including APAC, please be sure to click on the website -




Chiho Yanaga

School Nurse


Are you thinking of getting a flu shot this year? Flu vaccinations are available at pediatric/medical clinics. Please contact your child's doctor for more information.


Dr. Sono's clinic will start with the flu shots from October 22. Please call in advance for an appointment. Dr. Sono's office: 06-6848-0057 




Clarence Coombs

PYP Coordinator


What Are the Connections Between the Written Curriculum and Classroom Practice – the Taught Curriculum?


How best will we learn?

People learning about the PYP sometimes ask “Is it a curriculum or an approach?” The answer is “both”. The PYP curriculum is defined broadly enough to include an approach to teaching and learning, while recognizing the fact that the taught curriculum is the written curriculum in action.


The taught curriculum (what we actually teach) which defines what is relevant and significant has a commitment to structured, purposeful inquiry that engages students, actively, in their own learning. It is believed that this is the way in which students learn best – that students should be invited to investigate significant issues by formulating their own questions, designing their own inquiries, assessing the various means available to support their inquiries, and proceeding with research, experimentation, observation and analysis that will help them in finding their own responses to the issues.


In order to support this learning, most curriculum guides provide the basis for planning, usually in the form of a list of learning objectives.  In the PYP, to support the teachers, the link between the written, the taught and the assessed curriculum has been strengthened. The PYP provides a planner which all teachers, everywhere in the world, teaching the PYP use to plan units of work. They are designed to be used collaboratively, and are structured around a central idea and lines of inquiry. The planning is seen as holistic and not fragmented by disciplinary teaching.


Our second get-together has been re-scheduled to November 1, in the 3rd Floor Conference Room. It should serve to give you a clear idea, not only of the planner itself, but of what teachers do to plan independently and collaboratively. We will simulate the construction and development of a unit based on none other than the famous “International Fair”. It is important to choose a topic that is engaging, relevant, challenging and significant. Hence for the purpose of this session or demonstration, I have chosen the “International Fair”.   If you would like a better understanding of where and how activities that your children do are derived from, then this should be a fun, informative and realistic session.




Nakae Osako

Producer of All School Production


A meeting/sign-up session for Middle/High School will be held in the theatre on Monday, October 29 for those interested in being a part of this year’s All School Production, HONK! There will also be a practice session of the audition song on that day.


Cast auditions will be held on Friday, November 2 and Saturday afternoon, November 3.


Grade 3, 4, 5 students will get an information letter soon with a sign-up form attached.




Miwa Schell

OIS Parent


A class for beginners is offered the 1st and the 3rd Tuesday of the month, from 10:30 AM–11:30 AM. Each lesson is 2,500 yen (flowers included).


For more information please contact: Miwa Schell, 06-6872-4510,




Hiroshi Baba

SIS Math Teacher / Triathlon Club Coach


Date: Sunday, November 25th
Place: Banpaku Kinen Koen ("Banpaku Kinen Koen" or "Koen Higashi-guchi" by Monorail)


Time     Category      (Entry Fee)
09:50    Gr.7-9: 3 km   (Free)
10:15    Gr.5-6: 2 km   (Free)
10:18    Gr.3-4: 2 km   (Free)
10:40    5 km           (2000 yen)
11:20    10 km         (2000 yen)
11:22    Family Jogging: 2 km  (Free)
12:30    Half Marathon  (3000 yen)


Dead line: Tuesday, October 23rd
Send an e-mail to Mr. Baba for details via the information office:




Chris Mills

SIS English Teacher


A much loved female tabby cat needs a home from December.


Two years old, de-sexed, affectionate, inside/outside and well-behaved.

Please call: 072-700-1870



The SIS Hospitality Committee Needs Your Help for the Upcoming APAC Boys Volleyball Tournament!!!


We, the members of the hospitality committee of SIS are now preparing to entertain the coaches and the students from other schools for the APAC Boys Volleyball Tournament. We are going to serve lunch for the coaches on Oct. 25, 26, and 27 and have a banquet dinner for the coaches and the students on Oct.27. In order to make this event more successful, it will be wonderful if you could help us by donating some food. The food can be homemade or store-bought. Please see below for the details.


Event Dates   What is Needed   Where & When to Bring

Thur., Oct. 25  Dessert or Snack   To Cafeteria between 10 am & 12:00 on Oct. 25

 (for Lunch)     


Fri., Oct. 26    Dessert or Snack   To Cafeteria between 10 am & 12:00 on Oct. 26

(for Lunch)     


Sat., Oct. 27    Dessert or Snack   To Cafeteria between 10 am & 12:00 on Oct. 27

(for Lunch)


Sat., Oct. 27    Dish or Dessert    To Cafeteria between 3 pm & 5 pm on Oct. 27

(for a Banquet Dinner)



We hope all the people who participate in this event will have a good time. If you have any questions, please contact Eriko Tsuchida. E-mail address is :



International Fair


The OIS 7th grade has decided to run a Book Stall for the International Fair 2007. We need your help in collecting old books, CDs, DVDs, and videos. We are setting a box in front of the library till November 22nd for collecting your donations. Please feel free to bring in books of any language. We kindly refuse study guides and magazines. Any donations you make will be highly appreciated. Thank you so much for your generosity and your cooperation.


If you have any questions, please contact the numbers below.


Seyin Shin (Winston’s mom) : 072-796-1995

Yoshiko Ametani (Taka’s mom) : 0798-33-6540




OCTOBER 25 - 27

APAC Boys Volleyball Tournament @ OIS/SIS



Genkan Concert Series

See the details on the next page.



Registration Deadline for Dec. 1 SAT I & II Tests



PYP Parent Information Coffee, 2:30 pm @ 3F Conference Room



SOIS is proud to be hosting next week's APAC Boys Volleyball Tournament.

The tournament opens in a big way on Thursday, October 25, at 8:45: SOIS Sabers vs. CA Falcons.

Please come support the Sabers in this big match.    Go Sabers!





MONDAY, October 22

Rice Bowl with Chicken & Egg Topping


TUESDAY, October 23

Grilled Chicken


WEDNESDAY, October 24

Pizza Toast


THURSDAY, October 25

Meat au Gratin


FRIDAY, October 26

Chicken Cutlet with Tomato Sauce


MONDAY, October 29

Omelet Containing Fried Rice


TUEDAY, October 30

Chinese Noodle Soup


WEDNESDAY, October 31



THURSDAY, November 1

Curry Rice


FRIDAY, November 2

Cantonese Fried Rice





Karin Caffin, Head


Gwyn Underwood, MS/HS Principal


Rod Adam, ES Principal


Patrick Stenger, Counselor


Mike McGill,

Admissions Director


Jim Schell, Business Manager


Peter Heimer, IB Coordinator


Student Attendance



Contact us via e-mail

*For direct e-mail, all faculty have e-mail addresses with their first name initial and family name @

For example: If a faculty member had the name John Smith, his school e-mail address would be: