Houston’s Premier PK3 – 12th Grade International Day School

UPCOMING EVENTS:

May 31
Last Day of School for 2018-2019

June 1 - August 21
Summer Break

August 22
First Day of School for US 

August 23
First Day of School for MS

August 26
First Day of School for LS & 1st Grade/CP

August 27
First Day of School for Kinder/GS

August 28
First Day of School for PK4/MS

August 29
First Day of School for PK3/PS

GOING BEYOND THE CLASSROOM

In April, Awty began a new tradition, Awty Connects Week, as part of the newly established Experiential Education Program. This week incorporated long-standing traditions already in place like the 8th grade/4ème Big Bend camping trip and the 7th grade/5ème tour of Washington, D.C. The Big Bend trip has been a tradition at Awty for over 30 years and Awty’s 7th graders have been traveling to Washington, D.C. for the past six years. While one trip explores the great outdoors and the other shows city life, history, and museums, they have a few important factors in common. Both trips allow our students to get to know their classmates and teachers in a deeper, more meaningful way. They enable students to improve skills in self-management and independence as they navigate the world without their parents for a few days. Finally, being in a new place or with new people empowers students to leave what we call the ‘comfort zone’ and get into the ‘stretch zone’ where new ideas and deeper growth can occur.

8TH GRADE/4ÈME BIG BEND TRIP:

 

7TH GRADE/5ÈME WASHINGTON, D.C. TRIP:

 

Since both programs have proven to be successful over the years, Awty decided to expand on these traditions by providing educational opportunities beyond the classroom to all students in 6th grade/6ème through 11th grade/1ère. Each student was nudged gently out of their comfort zone and given a chance to connect with the world around them in a new and different way. Students not only connected to each other, but they also connected to aspects of the curriculum, to other cultures and languages, to nature, and more.

While the 7th grade/5ème students traveled to Washington, D.C., and the 8th grade/4ème explored Big Bend and the great outdoors, the 6th grade/6ème students went on day trips in and around the greater Houston area to places like Buffalo Bayou Park, Washington on the Brazos, and Brazos Bend State Park. These trips taught them about nature and the rich history in our great city, while providing opportunities for team building.

6TH GRADE/6ÈME LOCAL TRIPS:

 

The 9th grade/3ème students went out into the world for internships (stage) and explored career opportunities in various professions and fields. This was a great learning experience for the students, getting a first-hand look at their fields of interest and fulfilling “real-world” responsibilities and expectations. They were immersed in challenging work environments much different from their day-to-day school lives. After returning to school, the students shared their internship experiences with their advisory groups. Click here to hear about Ethnan Pedro, Isabella Chamma, Andrew Farrant, Matthew Mekha, and Rajiv Premkumar internship experiences.

9TH GRADE/3ÈME INTERNSHIPS / STAGE:

 

Tenth grade/2nde and 11th grade/1ère students chose from a menu of options for Awty Connects Week. The activities varied greatly in focus and location. Of the 264 students in both grades, 145 chose to go on overnight trips and 119 students elected to stay locally in Houston.

The overnight trips included a wide range of opportunities such as language classes in France and Costa Rica, a week studying immigration policies in El Paso, history trips to Vietnam and Italy, a soccer trip to Madrid, many cultural immersion and service projects in countries such as Tanzania, Peru, Honduras, Belize, and Morocco, and even a chance to be a junior chaperone on the Big Bend trip.

Each trip provided learning experiences and connections to new cultures for our students.

One connection that I experienced was talking with a North Vietnamese veteran,” stated a student on the Vietnam trip. “Although we learn a lot about the Vietnam War in the U.S., it was eye opening to hear about the war from the other side.

10TH GRADE/2NDE AND 11TH GRADE/1ÈRE OVERNIGHT TRIPS:

 

Of the 119 students who stayed in Houston, the most popular activity was a week of local community service, with a focus on either people or animals and the environment. Awty students went out into the Houston community and made connections to people and places they may never otherwise have encountered.

After visiting Refugee Services Texas, one student saw the significant value in learning other languages. “I think because of the languages we learn here at Awty, I was able to communicate with a Spanish speaking refugee to help him communicate his thoughts in English,” she stated.

Other local activities that took place were a field biology course focusing on invasive species, the recording of a jazz album, a cooking class, and a class on Python coding.

 

Overall, it was a successful week of making new connections for our students, and we were so impressed by the Awty students, who repeatedly demonstrated independence and put themselves into the ‘stretch zone’ with a brave face and a positive attitude. Of course, it could not have been accomplished without the passionate work and dedication from the Awty faculty and staff, and we are thankful to them for wholeheartedly guiding the students through these new experiences.