Clarion Newsletter, November 11, 2021

December 20, 2021

Happy Thursday Clarion Parents and Friends,

The weeks between the end of October and the December holiday break are always packed with things to do and experience, and our time here at Clarion School has certainly been busy and will remain so. We have already had a wonderful dress down/up day to end October, and it was followed by the American Moms In Dubai “Trunk or Treat” event in our parking lot on the same weekend. I was so pleased to see how our staff behind the scenes- Jr, Roralyn, Thaddeus, Alwyn, Rasool- were willing to be ready to help the American Mom’s group to manage the event. Kudos also to Ms. Asia from admissions for being here and serving along the way as a great go-between for us as a school and the trunk or treaters.

School Photos will be taken next week:

On the 14-15-16th next week we will have the atrium set up as a photo studio for most of each day. Stu Williamson Studio is again coming to take our photos! All students will have photos taken for the yearbook, and of course you as parents will have the option to buy photos.

November 14: Pre-K A; Pre-KB; K1A; K1C; K2A; K2B; K2C

November 15: K1B; K1D; G4; G5; G6

November 16: G3A; G1B; G2C; G2A; G2B; G1C; G1A; G3B

Please click the link below to access the timings for each group –

We ask that all students come in regular school uniform – if they have PE that day, to bring the PE uniform separately.

We have also accounted for field trips in this planning.

Thanks for understanding that if your child is absent on their photo day (especially the 16th) we do have a re-take day later on and can catch up and get them done!

Clarion Café - Food options:

The Clarion café is open again and it is nice to see so many parents and staff enjoying access to hot and cold drinks. We have added food- not just cookies- and we look forward to enhancing the services and options reasonably to better serve our school. More information will be shared on Sunday, November 14.

National Day at Clarion will be celebrated on Tuesday, November 30:

This year National Day at Clarion School will be held on Wednesday, November 30, and will be a mix of classroom activities and activities around school. COVID protocols must still be observed according to KHDA, but within those protocols we are going to find ways to do more this year.

The CPC is involved in helping and we appreciate their support, and of course the classroom teachers and their students will decorate their classrooms, some of them will dress in traditional clothes, and all will involve their teaching and learning with studies about our host/home country, the UAE.

Food Donations for Gratitude Day:

Gratitude Day for our school is on Thursday, November 25, so we will have a three day weekend.

In the United States of America Thanksgiving normally is a time for family and friends to get together. It is considered by many in the USA as ‘the’ quintessential holiday for all citizens and residents. Part of that celebration is taking time to give thanks and to give hope and help to others. This is done by food banks collecting food for the less fortunate.

As part of our duty as the more fortunate in the UAE, it is incumbent upon us to do something to reach out and help those who need it. The CPC and our students are going to be running a food collection for the needy here in the UAE leading up to and after Gratitude Day. Food collection boxes will be out front of school at drop off/pick up, and also in the street by the Clarion Café door.

We want to thank you in advance for your efforts to help those who have less than us.

Food items to bring include:

Canned goods, Rice (in sturdy bags/containers), Cooking Oil and Ghee, Lentils, Cartons of drinks- milk; etc.

Thank you for your efforts to help those in need!

Nutrition Programs at Clarion:

The week of the 21-24th there will be several nutrition programs at Clarion for some of our grade levels:

  • On Sunday the 21st, Grade 2 is one of only 5 schools in Dubai that will be visited As a part of the Farm to Table program. We are hosting a “Sandwich Bash” leading up to the UAE National Day. This involves chef Russell Impiazzi visiting 5 schools in the week leading up to National Day, and teaching 50 kids per school about healthy eating. It will be a 30 minute session where the kids will also take a veg pledge to eat healthy foods. This is a part of the overall “Farm to Table” program in the UAE that only includes 15 schools and will be part of a larger set of teacher led workshops later this year.
  • On Monday the 22nd, Grades 4 and 5 will work with an organization called “Food Heroes” online in a live streamed presentation. Thank you Ms. Joy and the Grades 4, 5, 6 team for setting this up! This workshop- that reaches 11 different countries- concerns food waste, and how to lower waste and what to do with food waste when you compost.

Upper School trips:

On Tuesday the 16th, Grade 4 students as part of their Unit of Inquiry studies will visit the site of the “Solar Decathlon Middle East (SDME)” a collegiate competition challenges students to design, build, operate solar powered houses. SDME is organized under the patronage of His Highness Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai and Chairman of Dubai Executive Council. This is located at the Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Solar Park and I can’t wait to explore the site with the Grade 4 and their teacher Ms. Daniela!Grades 5 and 6 on the same day are visiting the Louvre in Abu Dhabi with Ms. Joy and Ms. Katherine as part of their Unit of Inquiry for this part of the year.And yesterday, the Islamic Studies class of Grade 4, 5 and 6 students were taken to the Sheik Zayed Mosque in Abu Dhabi by their teachers Mr. Mahmoud and Ms. Shaimaa. The students reported to me that they had a wonderful time and enjoyed seeing such a spectacular Mosque and learning so much about it.Clarion School is certainly DEEP DIVING into field trips again!

Grade 3 B Action Research Project:

From Ms. Estelle the teacher Grade 3B has been dialoging about effective communication and positive community building for our unit of inquiry. Students are interested in researching more about the ways that we communicate and the importance behind communication for our relationships within communities and as communities mix. To aid their research they created a short survey (about 4 mins). Beforehand, we discussed and voted on questions, the way they’d be presented, whether we should allow for anonymity, and if we should include nationality. Everything was agreed upon as a class. After we collect the data, the students will analyze it and use it to present their findings during the culmination presentations.

Here is our 3B survey: id=WnthKhfesEWVXql- le9m70kj0KxxprFChSKFFHZL11xUQk84UEIwRlFZTVRUV1dHUENaQkg0OUFSSC4u

Dubai School Games Champion Grade 6 Aryan- Golf:

At the Dubai School Games Golf Championship several weeks ago I had the pleasure of walking several golf holes with one of our 6th Graders, Aryan, as he competed against 80+ other students in his category (I posted this on my linked in on October 2othe the day of the tourney ). Aryan was brilliant that day. Brilliant as a golfer, yes, but even more so as a person, in how he competed fairly, and even helped to coach the two players in his group, one of whom was still earning the game of golf. I was so proud of Aryan for exhibiting humility and grace in how he interacted with the other ‘competitors’ he was with, and kudos to his parents for the way they have encouraged his passion for golf while still ensuring Aryan stays grounded in being a good person. Sometime this November the Dubai School Games organizers have promised to deliver their congratulations to Aryan and a trophy as well.

Open Day, November 17

Wednesday the 17th at 10:30 till 11:30 AM we will host an “Open Day” for prospective families. Please pass the word to friends and family with children that they can call us and sign up for the “Open Day” next week!

Final word:

I was walking through the Grade 1 and 2 hallway today, popping into rooms and looking at the work being done. There was color combining and art in one room as they decorate for the next 5 weeks of school, and DIRT time in three other rooms, as children were writing and working in their Reflection Journals. The halls had a collection of building projects ongoing and various math and writing stations scattered around. It was truly invigorating to see the variety of projects being worked on and the varying levels of student progression. I am so proud of our teachers for the efforts they make to do challenging work that is still interesting and fun. Thank you teachers!

And as I sat here finishing this newsletter one of those very same Grade 1 students came in with a ‘rubric’ for me to look at that is a survey of ‘pick 6 places in our community that are important to you’. I had to pick 6 from about 14 on the list (I didn’t pick “lemonade stand!” LOL but then again I picked pharmacy over airport!). I was so pleased with how appropriately serious the student was, and how respectful and centered in explaining that ‘we are doing a survey to find out the important places in our community.’ I then got to listen to the student outside my office asking another member of staff to ‘please do this survey for our project’ and I turned back to this newsletter with a smile.

What a cool way to begin to wrap up a day.

The Clarion Way…project based learning about community.

Have a great weekend everyone and see you Sunday!


Jim #ClarionBuilders Pastore

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