Some of the class decided to take action and start a Save the Earth Club. They spoke to students on the playground about the importance of protecting the environment to recruit members.
Today they had their first session.
Today we celebrated Earth Day by turning off electrical devices for one hour.
Here Irfan and Yuuki are announcing to the school it is time to begin.
Today a volunteer from Action for Singapore Dogs came to collect our donation. She also answered our questions about the work that ASD does.
Charlie: Do you work for ASD?
Lisa: No, I'm actually a volunteer. I volunteer to help at special events and I'm also on the board.
Yuuki: Do you help other animals too?
Lisa: ASD helps dogs and a few cats, but there are other organisations that help other animals in Singapore.
Ray: Like ACRES. ACRES helps wild animals.
Julien: What does ASD stand for?
Ray: Action for Singapore Dogs.
Lisa: And do you know why we say 'Singapore' dogs?
Ray: Because people may not bring their dogs from other countries.
Irfan: Singapore is the country. The dogs are here.
Lisa: And it has to do with breeds. Do you know about breeds?
Holly: A breed is a kind of dog.
Gracie: Like a Labrador.
Ben: Or a Rottweiler.
Amelia: Or a Golden Retriever.
Charlie: How do you find out about the animals?
Lisa: Usually a kind-hearted person finds the injured dogs somewhere and tries to help the dog and calls us. Sometimes kind-hearted people even bring them to us to get our help.
Holly: How many animals do you have at ASD right now?
Lisa: About 120. Some are quite old now and some are puppies.
Ms Leah: About how many on average find homes?
Lisa: We do adoption drives quarterly and at each one probably about 20 dogs find homes.
Ms Leah: So if the adoption drives are quarterly, which is four times a year, how many on average would find a home a year.
Lisa: Yes, but that doesn't mean that there are 80 less then, because new ones are constantly coming. At anytime we usually have about 120.
Charlie: How long do dogs live?
Lisa: Usually it's about 12-14 years. It depends.
Holly: What if there's no more room at the shelter? What do you do?
Lisa: We also have quite a successful neuter and release program.
Charlie: What does that mean?
Ms Leah: If there are lots of male dogs and female dogs on the streets, over time what will they do?
Holly: Reproduce. So neuter means make it so they can no longer reproduce.
Olivia: Then they can't have puppies again and again. There will be fewer dogs on the streets.
Ben: We have a book from ASD and Ms Leah's dogs are in there.
Charlie: And I also saw a dog in there that only had two legs.
Lisa: Yes, we have a few dogs that only have 2 or 3 legs. They have special contraptions like a wheelchair that they can move around on.
Yuuki: So you help them get better and take care of them.
Lisa: Yes and some live with us for a long time.
Sometimes ASD has special events which you can go to, like Jazz in the Park. We had one last year. It was very good.
Yuuki: Can you tell us when it is?
Lisa: Yes, when it is organised I will tell Ms Leah and she can let you know.
Charlie: Where will it be?
Lisa: Probably in the Botanic Gardens again.
Charlie: How will our parents find out?
Lisa: I will let Ms Leah know and she will share it with you.
Charlie: And maybe she can put it on the class blog.
Lisa: That's a good idea.
Today we went on a field trip as a tuning in for our new unit Where We Are in Place and Time. We wanted to compare the trains now (MRT) with the trains in the past so we took the MRT from Botanic Gardens MRT to King Albert Park MRT.
Charlie: I'm going to take the escalator instead of the stairs. It is faster.
Ray: It's so steep, because the train is underground.
Ben: Just like us. We are underground right now.
Amelia: We can use this ticket again if we top it up.
Ray: It's all automated.
Ray: And you need your ticket to get out so be careful with it.
Ben: Otherwise the gate won't open and you won't be able to get out. You need the card or ticket to make it open.
Ray: We are taking the downtown line towards Bukit Panjang so we need to go this way. We'd better hurry. The next train is arriving in 1 minute. See? You can look up here.
Irfan: There's no driver of the train.
Charlie: Maybe the driver is at the back.
Ben: No, there's no driver. The computer drives the train.
Ray: And the doors. They are automated too. You can tell when the doors are going to shut because they make a sound and the light goes on.
Charlie: Ms Leah, what is this for?
Ben: It's for emergencies.
Olivia: Where are we getting off? Is it the next station?
Ray: It's King Albert Park. You can see here on the map what's next.
Olivia: The next station is Botanic Gardens.
Ray: No, we are going the other way. We are going towards Bukit Panjang.
Maria: King Albert Park? That's right near my house. To go to my house you just turn to the right here.
Ray: The exit is this way. I remember. Now we have to go to this way, because I can see something down here. That is the old railway bridge.
Ray: And then we need to turn and go up a steep hill.
Amelia: Are you sure we can go in here? The sign says not to.
Ray: See? This is the steep hill.
Ben: I don't want to go the long easier way. Can we please go up the steep way?
Ray: Yes, that way we can walk on the tracks.
Olivia: It's a bit muddy. Look.
Amelia: But it will be fun.
Ben: I think the old train station might have been here. Because look. The train tracks just stop here.
Julien: But look. They start again down there. The train station must be down that way.
Olivia: It's really old.
Irfan: It's broken.
Charlie: I don't think it's used anymore.
Amelia: Now we have the MRT.
Ray: And airplanes. We have airplanes.
Hugh: I think the train used to go to Indonesia.
Ben: Or Malaysia. It went to Malaysia.
Ray: Where's Kuala Lampur.
Amelia: Now people usually just fly there, because it's faster. Look what's under here.
Irfan: There are more tracks. The tracks are under here!
Charlie: I think maybe they just let the grass grow over the train tracks over here, because they didn't want to use them anymore.
Charlie: They are building something.
Ray: Maybe it's the new MRT station.
Ben: There's a sign. I'll go look.
I can't really see it clearly actually.
Hugh: Here's another sign.
Ray: A pipeline is where the water goes through. They are building a new pipeline for the water to go through.
Ben: And that's about the biodiversity.
Holly: Look. It's a kind of butterfly. And an owl.
Gracie: And an eagle!
Ben: Civet cats? I didn't know there were civet cats here. I hope we see one.
Julien: I really want to see a snake!
Amelia: Look the tracks used to be made of wood.
Ben: And something very strong, like iron.
Charlie: This was so the train could move.
Irfan: I think this is where the train stopped.
Maria: We found a ladybird. Ms Leah, can you come and see it? It feels ticklish. Do you want to hold it?
Justin: It's locked.
Charlie: I think this is the place people worked.
Hugh: They could control the train from there. Those are controls.
Maria: And this is where people got dropped off the train.
Irfan: Or waited to get on the train.
Olivia: Look what I found. It's like bamboo, Ms Leah. Do you want to feel it?
Ben: Who wants to pretend they are the conductor? You can check everyone's tickets and tell the train when to go.
Ben: I found something broken. It looks like glass. Maybe it's glass from the broken windows.
Charlie: Maybe this is what made the train stop.
Ray: Or switch to the other side.
Irfan: This is Malay. See the sign? It's Malay.
Ray: It says Singapore Woodlands.
Ben: But it's coming off.
Charlie: Because it's old.
Irfan: Bukit means hill in Malay.
Ray: Are we going to have lunch now?
Olivia: Is this where we are going to have lunch?
Ray: Are we walking through the nature reserve to there?
Anri: A butterfly!
Charlie: It's so beautiful!
Maria: Look at the blue.
Ray: And there's another butterfly.
Irfan: And another one. There are so many butterflies.
Hyuga: An ant!
Kou: It's so big.
Ben: It's enormous!
Yuki: I saw a huge spider. I took a picture of it on my dad's phone. Do you want to see it?
Ben: Oh no. We only saw the spider web when we went past.
Charlie: I hear a noise. I think it might be a kind of bird.
Ray: Or a lizard maybe.
Ben: It's camouflaged so we can't see it. I also hear another noise. It's cicada.
Olivia: A caterpillar or something has been eating these leaves.
Yuuki: Here is a centipede. Did you see the centipede.
Ben: I found a millipede. But see? It's already dead. Holly has the back part of it.
Amelia: We saw a banana tree.
Maria: But it was those small bananas you can get.
Irfan: I see a cow! I don't think there are cows around here. Or is it like the goat farm?
Ben: Was it a long time ago there were cow farms here? Is that way it is called Dairy Farm?
Ray: Look! The last tiger was killed in 1932 in Singapore!
Maria: That means tigers in Singapore are now extinct.
Julien: Wow! There were tigers before in Singapore.
Charlie: Now there are only tigers in the zoo.
Maria: Ms Leah, can you read this one for me?
Charlie: What does this one say? Who was he? This looks important.
Today was the ISS Student-led Conferences. Students enjoyed showing their work and some of the activities they do in class.
A group of Grade 5 students are doing their exhibition about sports. For their action component, they asked ISS teachers if they would lead their students in a short fitness activity three times a week.
Here are some photos from this week.
Want to do them at home? Here are a few videos you can do.
As part of our preparations for Earth Day, Ben and Amelia visited the canteen today to talk to the staff about Earth Day. They asked them to try to think of ways they might reduce their use of plastic and gave them some suggestions for next week.
Today Charlie and Holly presented at the lower school and upper school assemblies to share our ideas about how ISS can celebrate Earth Day next week.
1) Earth Hour
We will have an Earth Hour Friday from 10:30-11:30. Grade 1 students will announce the beginning and ending of Earth Hour using a megaphone.
2) Art Gallery
Students will be encouraged to create art about why they love the Earth and why it should be protected. Teachers can display the artwork in the hallways.
3) Tree Appreciation
Students can decorate the ISS trees with strings or ribbons to show their love of trees.
Older students can write to NParks asking them to protect the trees.
4) Family Time in Nature
Families can spend time in nature. MacRitchie Reservoir, Sungei Buloh, Bukit Batok Park, Pulau Ubin are just a few suggestions. Families can send their pictures to their teacher who will forward them to Ms Leah and Mrs Hayward.
5) Plastic-free or reduced plastic snacks and lunches
Students, teachers and staff can bring in plastic free or reduced plastic snacks and lunches.
Students who buy canteen lunches can bring in their own forks and spoons.
Charlie and Holly also showed these videos. The first video was shared at the lower elementary assembly and the second one at the upper elementary assembly.
Today Maria and Olivia went to talk to G1.1 about the money Grade 1 raised at the ISS Fun Fair. They showed videos about the Singapore Food Bank, ACRES and Action for Singapore Dogs and talked about why our class chose to donate to Action for Singapore Dogs.
This week Ms Grant offered two more workshops on research skills for Grade 1 students in the library. On Monday there was a workshop research using the Internet, and today there was a workshop about identifying key information from pictures.
We are a class of Grade 1 students at an international school in Singapore hoping to share our learning with you.