• September 2017 Newsletter

    Lauren White, Director

    A Letter from the Director

    Class! Class! We are off to amazing start this year with the implementation of many new programs, one of which is Whole Brain Teaching. This classroom approach focuses on student engagement and classroom management. It’s application highlights that as educators we talk too much, losing our audience during long winded lectures.It also centers on the need for movement and most of all fun. Every lesson comes with a list of gestures to help children remember key concepts. Our teachers talk NO more than 1 minute at a time and then children are responsible for communicating with gestures concepts learned. The dynamic nature of this teaching method allows us to maximize student learning by appealing to many different learning styles

    We are also excited to watch the implementation of both our Community Service Program and our STEAM program. Every Friday, children are participating in hands on learning, bringing concepts taught in class to life in a new and exciting way. Our Community Service Program teaches children the necessity of giving back to our community. They will be making trips to an Elderly Home, Orphanage and a Special Needs Program. This process will help them grow as individuals, learning that when you give you get much more back in return.

    We are excited to watch these programs continue to develop over the course of this year. We are grateful to all of our staff, students, families, and community for all the continued support they have shown.

    STEAM Projects

    STEAM is an educational approach to learning that uses Science, Technology, Engineering, the Arts and Mathematics as access points for guiding student inquiry, dialogue, and critical thinking. The end results are students who take thoughtful risks, engage in experiential learning, persist in problem-solving, embrace collaboration, and work through the creative process. These are the innovators, educators, leaders, and learners of the 21st century! Our teachers have embraced it and some amazing things are happening in the classroom!

    Welcome Back Parents!

    Each new school year, we host a cocktail party for all of our parents so we can renew friendships, meet new friends and enjoy and adult evening. This year it was at the Cafe de Arte and we had a great turnout. One of the very best things about our school is not just the students but the parents! We look forward to a successful year and lots of fun ahead.
    September is “Patronage” Month
    The month of September is considered patronage month in Nicaragua as we celebrate Independence Day on September 14 and 15.  In September, everyone flies the flag and schools participate in parades throughout the month. We participated in the parade for private schools with our new flag and  banner. Our students, wearing the traditional blue and white banners and white gloves, were picture perfect as you can see below. And to make things even more traditional, several of our students wore  typical Nicaraguan outfits.
    Eye Exams for Everyone
    Opticas Munkel brought their mobile exam room to our school for eye exams for all the students.  It was so easy and they were so great with the kids. Eye exams for children 6-18 years in age is vital  as a   child needs many abilities to succeed in school. Good vision is a key. Reading, writing, chalkboard work, and using computers are among the visual tasks students perform daily. A child’s eyes are constantly in use in the classroom and at play. When his or her vision is not functioning properly, education and participation in sports can suffer.

    The school years are a very important time in every child’s life. All parents want to see their children do well in school and most parents do all they can to provide them with the best educational opportunities. But too often one important learning tool may be overlooked – a child’s vision.

    As children progress in school, they face increasing demands on their visual abilities. The size of print in schoolbooks becomes smaller and the amount of time spent reading and studying increases significantly. Increased class work and homework place significant demands on the child’s eyes. Unfortunately, the visual abilities of some students aren’t performing up to the task.

    When certain visual skills have not developed, or are poorly developed, learning is difficult and stressful, and children will typically:

    • Avoid reading and other near visual work as much as possible.
    • Attempt to do the work anyway, but with a lowered level of comprehension or efficiency.
    • Experience discomfort, fatigue and a short attention span.

    Some children with learning difficulties exhibit specific behaviors of hyperactivity and distractibility. These children are often labeled as having “Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder” (ADHD). However, undetected and untreated vision problems can elicit some of the very same signs and symptoms commonly attributed to ADHD. Due to these similarities, some children may be mislabeled as having ADHD when, in fact, they have an undetected vision problem.

    Why Chess in the Classroom?

    The Nicaraguan Ministry of Education has recently added Chess to the standard curriculum for private schools in Nicaragua. This seemed a bit odd to us until we started looking at chess in a different way.  Research from around the world reveals that chess is improving children’s critical thinking and problem solving skills. How can we be sure? Higher math and reading test scores among chess players is one indicator. Intellectual, social and emotional maturity is another. Studies have shown that chess improves a child’s:

    • visual memory
    • attention span
    • spatial reasoning skills
    • capacity to predict and anticipate consequences
    • ability to use criteria to drive decision making and evaluate alternatives

    Although they have made it mandatory, there are no chess sets to be found in the country!  If you will be traveling to Granada and could donate a set, we would be so grateful. New, used plastic or wood, we do not care. And if you play chess and would like to participate in the class, even better! Who knows, we could have the next World Chess Champion in our school.

    Teacher Spotlight

    Rebecca Carruba


    First Grade Lead Teacher

    Mrs. Rebecca received her B.A. from the State University of New York at Stony Brook in May of 2015. Having studied Spanish, she is excited to be working in an environment that encourages its students to better their language skills and develop new ones. Her heart for teaching began in high school when she traveled to Guatemala to volunteer as a teacher. Upon her return to the U.S., she  began tutoring disadvantaged children in her hometown and continued the work into the start of her university years. She was drawn to Nicaragua by her then-fiancée/now-husband and moved to Granada in September of 2016.  She hopes to make the vibrant community her own.

    Our Scholarship Program
    Granada International School is proud to dedicate 35% of its student body to scholarships for children who otherwise would not be able to attend our fantastic school. We are giving back to the community and creating life long lovers of learning.

    In order to continue supporting these children, we need to build up our scholarship fund. For just $30 per month, you are helping  to shape the future of Nicaragua by educating the children.

    We will be happy to bill you monthly, quarterly or annually. You can pay through PayPal,  a credit card or a direct deposit into our stateside account.  Help make a difference in the life of a child!

    There are several other ways you can help with our Scholarship Program:
    Provide a healthy and hot meal….$30 per month
    Assist with Books and Materials…$25 one time fee
    Uniforms…$35 one time fee

    All donations are tax deductible under the section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code of the United States.

    Donate to our Scholarship Program
    From Our Cookbook

                             Spiced Mango Muffins

    4 1/2 c. flour                                            2 large eggs
    1 tsp. salt                                                3/4 c. vegetable oil
    4 1/2 tsp baking powder                         1 1/4 c. milk
    1/2 tsp. allspice                                       3 c. mangoes, diced
    1/2 tsp. nutmeg                                       2 c. brown sugar
    1 tsp. cinnamon

    Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. (204 C) Combine flour, salt, baking powder, brown sugar, allspice,nutmeg and cinnamon in a large bowl. Whisk until well blended. In a separate bowl, beat eggs, milk, oil and stir into dry ingredients. Gently stir in mangoes. Grease 12 muffin cups and fill 3/4 full. Bake 20 minutes and check if done. . Allow to cool in pan five minutes and then remove to wire rack. Makes 12 large muffins.

    A Great Gift Idea!  And only $10!
    This cook book will  make a great birthday, Christmas, anniversary, wedding, graduation, Mother’s Day or any occasion gift.

    Our Cook Book is filled with recipes from all around the world. The recipes are from our school families and our local community. Enjoy recipes from Cafe de Arte, Pan de Vida and more. The recipes are in Spanish and English with pages of helpful hints and cooking terminology. We are happy to ship any where in the world for you and offer discounts on three or more books. The cost of each cookbook is $10.00. All proceeds go directly to our scholarship program. To order your cookbook,  CLICK HERE

    Donate to Support G.I.S.
    Copyright © 2014 Granada International School, All rights reserved.
    Newsletter #3, August 2017

    Our web address is:
    www.granadainternationalschool.org

    Our mailing address is:
    509 Calle El Consulado
    Granada, Nicaragua 43000

    Thank you for your continued interest and support of Granada International School.

    Sacuanjoche International School · 509 Calle Consulado, Granada · Granada 44000 · Nicaragua