School Blog

Technology at IESÅ - Empowering our students to harness the future!

Technology at IESÅ - Empowering our students to harness the future!

IES Årsta Students Engaged in Programming 

Programming is all around us and we rely on it daily yet, only about 0.5% of the world's population knows how to code. This leaves the future of our society to be driven by a very small population, unless more people learn how to work with technology and grow it! This is why it is absolutely imperative that our students learn programming skills, so that they can be empowered to make a difference in our world and contribute to our ever-growing society. At IESÅ, we are committed to ensuring our students have the skills they need to be successful in today’s technology driven society, which is why we have made programming a central focus throughout our school-wide scaffolded technology program. Our ultimate goal is to ensure that our students leave our school with good knowledge about programming concepts, resources, and have acquired skills to produce work in technology, ultimately preparing them for working life. 

To engage our students with their community and the importance of coding, we warmly welcomed imagiLabs, a start-up company located here in Stockholm. Their mission is to create fun and realistic opportunities for students, particularly young girls, to get involved in STEM (science, technology, engineering, and maths) subjects. They are passionate about getting youth involved in the art of programming, and have created both hardware and software to spark interest in code for students aged 7-14. During their visit at IES Årsta, our year 7 students participated in a grade-level appropriate workshop on how to program using the Python programming language, and were able to test a new product that the company is going to release to market (the imagiCharm). This product is aimed to create a social experience for students when it comes to practicing code. In order to complete the workshop and imagiCharm activities, our students downloaded the imagiLabs app for free, giving them the ability to later practice coding skills at home, in transport, or with their friends. Our students were some of the first to try this product out, and were asked to provide valuable feedback to the imagiLab team on how to make the programming products (both the hardware and software elements) better. Our students had a unique opportunity to not only be involved in the development of a new product that can help students around the nation learn to code, but also witness technological product development in real time. This allowed them to gain understanding about what it is like to work in the technology industry. Our students were inspired to learn more and practice coding with their peers. In the end, our goal is to prepare our students for working life. By providing our students with opportunities to pair with community partners and make a real difference within the subject area, we ensure that they connect with the subject content on a deeper, more personal level. In turn, they are prepared to take on new challenges and are empowered to steer their own future.

 

Reflecting on our first month - Belonging

Reflecting on our first month - Belonging

I Belong, You Belong, We All Belong

In our first month back to school, we reflected on what it means to belong. Feeling like you belong in social groups is important for facilitating a sense of purpose and affirmation, ultimately making us feel safe, heard and valued. At IESÅ, we want to support our students in their relationships at school and generate a space where all feel like they belong and can flourish and grow. 

So far, we have completed many activities and bonding challenges as a school in order to ensure that each individual feels that they are a part of something.

First, we kicked off the year with a door decorating competition. The door decorating competition gave our students an opportunity to express who they are and what they value to the rest of the school, all while bonding with their mentor classes. We are so proud of our students' creativity and self-expression! Creating such meaningful artwork that will be displayed in the building all year contributes to the school's community. Walking through the halls, you can get a sense of the many personalities and aspirations of our students, connecting us all together as a family.

Communication with mentor teachers is also incredibly important for our students, as mentorship allows individuals to get support when it comes to developing relationships and a feeling of belonging in the school. So far, our students have helped their mentor teachers get to know them better by filling in a journal entry in mentor time lessons. These journal entries include reflections about friendship, sense of self, as well as interests and values. Teachers read the journal entries in confidence in order to gain insight to better support and understand our students- after all, our most important goal is to help you feel like you belong here.

Further, it is important to note that we have a record low number of broken responsibilities and many community heroes so far! It is clear that our students are working toward reaching our school goal to "be respectful" by embracing our school routines, helping each other, and respecting our teachers - this makes everyone feel safe and welcome at school, ultimately contributing to a greater sense of belonging.

Finally, we have had a great amount of participation in events like House Day, Are You Smarter Than an IESÅ Teacher, and Mentor Day! Holding school and house events gives students a chance to meet new people, make new friends, and contribute to the school culture. We will also be introducing clubs next week, where students have the opportunity to attend meetings with like-minded people and grow in areas that they care about. For example, our new SAGA club has been absolutely fantastic! It is so inspiring to see our students getting more involved in the school. 

It has been a great year so far at IES Årsta. We are very proud of our students' growth in character, and collective effort to reach our school goals. Next week, we will move into a new Mentor theme called "Anti-bullying". With this theme, our students will learn about strategies and resources for dealing with bullying scenarios. 

Reaching Our Goals - Reflecting on our first weeks back to school

Reaching Our Goals - Reflecting on our first weeks back to school

Our First Weeks Back at School 2021/2022

We have had a wonderful first few weeks here at IES Årsta. So far we have had bonding time with our mentor classes, chatted about sommarlov, reflected on belonging in our school, competed in our fantastic house program and navigated our new schedules! We have started to brainstorm what fun things we can do for house and choice days this year, and selected student council members to represent student voice! The buzz in the school is undeniable. This is going to be a great year! 

Keeping the momentum going - focusing on our school goals!

This year we have 3 new school goals. Each year we choose new goals in response to reflection and feedback from previous years. We listen to our students, teachers, parents, and admin staff to establish a sense of what we need to focus on in the new year. This year, our goals are to be engaged, to be challenged, and to be respectful. Working towards common goals creates a sense of community within any organization. We feel that it is important for both teachers and students to work toward something together, ultimately bringing us closer and enforcing a sense of mutual respect and understanding. We hope that by incorporating our goals into everything we do, we will help everyone at school feel a sense of pride and purpose. 

Being Engaged:

Teachers will create engaging lessons and students will make good effort to activitly listen, participate and set personal and academic goals in their lessons. When we are engaged, we are in a state where we can learn and grow.

Being Challenged:

Teachers will create challenge for students in new ways. Students will feel growth in their learning by taking on challenges and pushing their academic boundaries. When we are challenged, we develop new ways of working and initiate academic improvement.

Being Respectful:

Teachers will prioritize having effective learning conversations with our students. Students will appreciate the learning conversations that teachers initiate with them, ultimately helping them to develop their character and prepare for working life. When we are respectful, we create a sense of support and empowerment, and people feel valued! 

We are excited for all of the wonderful things this year has to bring! Welcome back IESÅ!

 

From the Principal

Principal's Letter - August 2021

Dear Students, Parents and Guardians, 

 

Welcome back to the 2021/22 school year at IES Årsta. 

 

Respect, challenge and engagement. 

As always, as a school we reflect and identify areas to improve for our students. 

This year at IES Årsta we are focussing on the actions all of us in our school community need to take to ensure we maintain a positive and calm school environment. 

Be respectful, be challenged and be engaged are our school goals for this school year. As a proudly diverse school community respect is at the heart of everything we do and we need to build more respect within our school community through positive relationships and working together. Together we can succeed. 

 

Anti Bullying

This year, an important goal is also to involve our students and you, our parents and guardians in the process and actions of maintaining a respectful and safe school by working with our ‘plan mot kränkande behandling’. We have identified this as an area we can improve on, so expect to hear more from myself and our team here at IES Årsta throughout the year on how you can get more involved and support our school community. As all of us need to take a strong stance against bullying to build a respectful school community. 

 

New Team

I welcome our long term Assistant Principal Sofie Legersjö into a new role this year as our Assistant Principal for Student Care. Ms Legersjö will lead our student care team as well as our work on anti bullying throughout our school to ensure we build respect within our school community and have zero tolerance for bullying. Alongside Ms Legersjö, Michael Foster will continue as our Student Care Coordinator. 

On the Academic side, our new Assistant Principal Academics - Edina Kadric will lead our academic team alongside our new Academic Coordinator Elodie Lacasta. 

For Junior school students, we welcome our new Head of Junior School Linnea Masson. We look forward to Ryan Coulter continuing as our Head of Middle School. While Stefanie Streck will be our new Head of Senior School. 

 

Class Mixing

Just a reminder that we are mixing the classes and we do not take preferences from the students or parents. It is decided by the student care team. We ask that you respect this process. We also ask that you along with us support them through this process of change. Change is something that we all have to encounter in our lives and we strongly believe that this class mixing policy develops resilience in the students themselves and also bonds the entire year group together for the betterment of our school community. 

 

Covid-19

Given the recommendations from the Swedish public health agency, we continue to be cautious with school start. This means we will have virtual parent meetings instead of physical parent meetings at school next week. We hope to be able to welcome you all into school again for the first set of development talks on Wednesday 15 September. However, this will be confirmed in early September. 

 

Virtual Open House & Mentor Meeting

Please reserve the date of Wednesday 25 August from 15.40-18.30 to ensure you can join the Digital Meetings together with your child. The expectation is you sit down with your child and join the meetings. This is an opportunity to discuss our school with your child and meet your child’s teachers, mentors and the school leadership.  Attendance is compulsory. Further detailed instructions will be posted on Schoolsoft. 

 

Important Upcoming Events

First Day of Autumn Term - Mentor Day

When: Wednesday, 18 August 2021

Where: IES Årsta

Who: All Grades

Time: See Schoolsoft

 

Parent Schoolsoft and Gleerups Training

When: Wednesday, 18 August 2021

Where: Online - link on schoolsoft. 

Who: All new parents

 

Second Day of Autumn Term - House Day

When: Thursday, 19 August 2021

Where: IES Årsta

Who: All Grades

Time: See Schoolsoft

 

Normal Student Schedule Starts

When: Friday, 20 August 2021

 

IES Årsta Digital Open House/Mentor Meetings 

When: Wednesday, 25 August, 2021

Where: Online - Links available on Schoolsoft. 

Time: 15.40-18.30

15.40-17.00 - Meet the teachers and departments

17.00-17.30 - Meet the school leadership

17.30 - 18.30 - Meet the mentors

 

Student Development Talks/Study Day (No Junior Club)

When: Wednesday, 15 September, 2021

 

Study Day (No Junior Club)

When: Friday, 15 October, 2021

 

Autumn Break

When: Week 44

 

Subject Teacher Evening

When: Wednesday, 10 November, 2021

 

End of Autumn Term

When: Tuesday 21 December, 2021

 

First Day of Spring Term

When: Tuesday 11 January, 2022

 

 

The full School calendar for 2021/22 can be found on Schoolsoft under files and links. 

 

Welcome back! 

 

Julian Dent

 

Principal 

 

Principal's Letter - June 2021

Dear Parents and Guardians,

 

As I write this we have just celebrated our second graduating class of Grade 9 students here at IES Årsta. The number of our IES Årsta alumni is growing and something we are very proud of. The class of 2021 has shown grit and resilience throughout what has been a challenging year for all. I want to congratulate our Grade 9 students for their hard work and dedication upholding our IES values and setting a positive example for the rest of our student body. We wish the class of 2021 all the best in the future! 

 

This year has been a challenge for all of us due to the ongoing global pandemic which we are all affected by in various ways. Here at IES Årsta we have tried to maintain a stable and consistent education for our students throughout the year to ensure they do not miss out on crucial learning opportunities. We are proud of the high expectations the students have been held to and worked diligently towards. They should be proud of their learning progress and the academic results they have achieved this year. 

 

It has been tough for our students individually, our team here at school as I am sure it has been for you as parents, but I want to thank you for your continued support throughout this year as it continues to be crucial to work together for your children. As we look towards the future we hope to be able to welcome you back into the school building next year and strengthen our resolve to support your children and ensure we work to maintain the positive, calm and safe school culture, which has suffered throughout this pandemic.

 

I wish you a restful summer and look forward to seeing you in the Autumn. 


 

First day of Autumn Term 2021/22

Grade 4: Tuesday 17 August 2021

Grades 5-9: Wednesday 18 August 2021

 

School Calendar 2021/2022

This can now be found on Schoolsoft for your planning purposes under files and links.

 

Happy Summer! 

 

Julian Dent

Principal

 

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