Dates to Remember:



Monday, 2 June and Tuesday, 3 June

CCA Assemblies for Upper Elementary

1:00pm – 1:40pm
Coral Dixon Theatre

Friday, 6 and Saturday, 7 June

Cognita Games

Various Locations

Wednesday, 4 June

LOTE taster sessions for Year 5s

Year 5 classrooms

Friday, 6 June

Semester 1 CCA’s conclude


Wednesday, 11 June

Prep Swimming Carnival

8.40-9.40 - PDI, PIT, PSY, PCO

9.50-10.50 - PLO, PWH, PJA, PHO

AIS Pool

Friday, 13 June

ICE Festival – Dress up day

Various Locations


Assessment and Reporting at AIS

Assessment is integral to all teaching and learning and involves the gathering and analysis of information about student performance and is designed to inform practice. It identifies what students know, understand and can do at different stages in the learning process.

AIS is committed to using a variety of data, including national assessments (e.g. the recent NAPLAN testing), teacher observations, standardised testing, peer and self‐assessment, learning journals and student reflections. The use of a range of data offers a more complete and holistic insight into student learning rather than a single type of data.

Teachers are currently using the range of data to develop the student reports, which will be sent out at the end of the Semester along with Student Learning Journals.

In this week’s newsletters you will see examples of the wide range of ways teachers collect evidence of student learning and how it informs practice.

Mignon Weckert
Head of Elementary

Elementary School Notices / Announcements

International Cultural Experience

On Friday 13 June, the Elementary School will be taking part in the AIS International Cultural Experience, also known as ICE.  This is a school-wide celebration of the 50+ nationalities within our student body, as well as the cultures many of our students will have also experienced during their travels.

We are very fortunate to be able to celebrate this with the Secondary School through the fun and engaging opening ceremony as well as the ICE showcase. This is a concert that highlights a selection of cultural performances from the Secondary School.

The rest of our ICE day will be spent engaging in year level activities, highlighting the wonderful array of cultures we have at AIS. Children will be exploring foods, activities, music as well as having an international dress up day - please feel free to check with your classroom teacher for futher details.

Lester Stephens
Assistant Head of Elementary

Upper Elementary

Assessment is a critical component of the learning cycle. While traditionally thought of as occurring at the end of learning, to measure students’ attainment of certain knowledge and skills, or in the form of standardised tests such as NAPLAN, assessment can and does take place at AIS throughout the course of learning. Assessment is then not only OF learning, but FOR learning and AS learning.

Assessment takes many forms in the Upper Elementary School.  Assessment FOR learning, often referred to as formative or diagnostic assessment, is the use of a task for the purpose of determining student understanding at the beginning of or during a block of instruction.  Conducting numeracy interviews, completing a pre-assessment on the big ideas of a Unit of Inquiry, a spelling inventory, or observations derived from guided reading sessions are all ways of how teachers gather data, in order to effectively plan to cater for student needs.

Summative Assessments or assessment OF learning are used to measure and record student achievement.  NAPLAN is an external example of this; however, many assessments OF learning are conducted by teachers in order to build a learning profile of their students. Writing samples following a unit on a particular text type; Summative Tasks which provide students with the opportunity to demonstrate their understanding of the Central Idea of a Unit of Inquiry; or a mathematics post-test, given at the conclusion of a unit of work, are all ways in which teachers collect evidence about student attainment. This in turn is communicated to parents through our written reports.

Opportunities to self and peer assess are provided to students of the Upper Elementary.  This type of assessment encourages students to reflect on and identify areas of strength and areas for focus, forming part of the learning.  Assessment AS learning is a powerful tool which puts the student firmly in the centre of the learning process. 

Danica Holloway and James Harrison  
Assistant Heads of Upper Elementary

Lower Elementary - The Year 1 Swimming Carnival as a demonstration of learning

The theme of this week’s newsletter is assessment and reporting and the range of ways that teachers gather evidence of student learning in a variety of contexts.

This week our Year 1 students participated in their annual Swimming Carnival. The carnival was the culmination of the Swim Scheme in which students have participated over the past month. This swimming program is a wonderful example of how our teachers use a variety of evidence to inform practice.

The Assessment Model that is in use at AIS is based on the belief that no single test or set of data should be used to make important educational judgments or decisions about a student’s learning. The broad types of data that are used at AIS can be grouped as: ‘Assessment of Personal Mastery’, ‘Assessment of Growth over Time’ and ‘Assessment of Applied Understanding’.

In the context of the swimming program, these key elements are demonstrated in the following ways:

Assessment of Personal Mastery ‐ as the commencement of the Swim Scheme our students were assessed based on a clear set of skills. This initial assessment allowed the coaches to differentiate the students into smaller groups so that their instruction could be targeted to the needs of those students.

Assessment of Growth Over Time ‐ throughout the process of the Swim Scheme the coaches continually assessed students in relation to the sets of skills. At times, there were adjustments made to the groupings and the instruction was very much targeted to the needs of each child.

Assessment of Applied Understanding ‐ the Swimming Carnival was an opportunity for the students to apply their learning in an authentic context. The events that were selected were drawn from the knowledge of the swim coaches and participation in events was determined by each child’s broad level of ability.

As we are a PYP school there is also another layer of assessment that transcends the subject-specific skills that are the focus of the Swim Scheme. This program also provides evidence for teachers regarding the transdisciplinary nature of our curriculum. Teachers were able to build a holistic picture of each child in relation to their social skills, self-management skills and communication skills. The program also builds an understanding of how a child approaches unfamiliar situations, a child’s commitment to learning, confidence in own ability, ability to persevere, and enthusiasm for different types of learning. It provides invaluable information that will ensure teachers are informed when planning learning across all areas of the curriculum.

It was also really fun! The students and teachers had a wonderful day. The focus of the day remained very much on maximum participation and maximum fun.

Whilst the day was not about winning – the element of competition is very exciting for the students. Here are the results of the day:










A huge thank you to Mrs Miranda Teves, the PE team and the AIS Swim Coaches for their organisation and enthusiasm to ensure the carnival was a success.

Prep will be enjoying their Swimming Carnival next week - click here to download the information letter that was previously sent to parents.

Megan Howard and Nick Martin
Assistant Heads of Lower Elementary

Assessment of Children’s Learning in the Preschool

In the Preschool, our teachers assess in a variety of ways. The most suitable forms of assessment in an early years setting consist of formal observations in informal classroom settings, accompanied by written observational records and reflections. The written reflections that you receive weekly from your class teacher provide you with your child’s engagements with and inquiries into areas of particular interest or fascination.  These can form the basis of assessments. The PYP framework, including its five essential elements, also plays an important part in determining the focus of our assessments. Balance is established between describing children’s activities and their thinking. This can be documented in relation to their environments, with the links to the learning outcomes presented.

Please enjoy some examples of quality classroom practice that have been shared with parents in class reflections recently:

Through documenting and analyzing children’s play narratives, insights can be gained into children’s thinking and ways to help to make their learning visible. Such narratives are helpful for sharing children’s learning with parents and the wider learning community. Through observation and the use of tools such as video recordings and learning stories, it is possible to analyse the many ways in which children construct theories and express their understanding of the world.  Video clips are a powerful way to share children’s learning and to involve children in reflection and assessment.

Our Preschool teachers were recently commended through the Early Years Review, on the way in which they communicate the children’s learning journeys to families.

This year, teachers have been able to share the learning occurring in the Preschool in a variety of ways; Weekly Reflections, “Back to School Family Picnic”, Parent-Teacher interviews, individual Written Reports, and our Exhibition of Learning next term.

Have a wonderful weekend with your family.

Judy and Kirsti
Head and Assistant Head

Elementary Music

What an amazing few weeks of music making in the Elementary School!

We have had a beautiful performance from the Elementary Chamber Choir for His Supreme Highness Prince Alfred of Lichtenstein.

Following which we were treated to a wonderful inspiring weeklong visit from Richard Gill OAM working with us on developing creativity in the child through the use of the Orff Schulwerk approach. Since then we have been enthusiastically incorporating more of his wisdom into our lessons. Richard Gill’s main focus for us was about using composition as the driving force behind developing creativity in the classroom and as a way for students to demonstrate their understanding of Music Concepts.

Wayne Elliot
Elementary School Music