Green School Weekly Newsletter – 23 Jan 2012

by wirya - 23rd Jan 2012 from Latest News

Believe that life is worth living and your belief will help create the fact.
– William James

Below, please find the link to the latest installment of our weekly newsletter. There is lots going on as we hit our stride in Term 2 here, including the grand opening of our new bridge (capping off a Friday that is full of parent-friendly activities at GS), the recent Model UN trip to Shanghai, the latest in Ibu Mona’s series of articles on sustainability in education, some late additions to our roster of after-school activities, an interesting plastic bottle request from Grade 10 students, and much, much more.

In this issue:

1. The Bridge is Open
2. Friday, January 27
3. Green School Granted CIS Membership
4. Grade 11 Community Service project: “The Sanctuary”
5. Plastic Bottle Project by Grade 10
6. Drop-off Etiquette
7. GS High School Students take Shanghai
8. Grade 8 Quest Program
9. Grade 5 Integrated Art-Science Project
10. Travel Green
11. What is carbon offsetting
12. Ibu Mona: Educating for Sustainability
13. New In Afterschool!
14. Hand Craft Group activities
15. Green School Calendars and upcoming holidays
16. Class Ambassadors
17. Our own weekly news

The Bridge is Open!

The proper offerings have been made, the right prayers proclaimed, and our beautiful rebuilt main bridge is now open for human and animal traffic (but please, no motorized vehicles!). See details below on Friday’s Green School Grand Opening, but in the meantime, any family coming from points east of the school should consider parking on the other side of the river and walking across. You should more than make up for the extra minutes spent traversing the campus in driving time saved, and I can guarantee you a truly peaceful and lovely start to the school day.

Friday, January 27:

12:30 PM Principal Lunch with Parents (Mepantigan);

01:30 PM Green Community Meeting (Mepantigan);

02:30 PM Green Community Assembly (Mepantigan);

03:30 PM Afternoon Family Social (New Bridge)

Those of you new to Green School will soon find out that the last Friday of every month is usually very action-packed. This week is no exception!

Principal Lunch, 12:30- 1:25 PM: This is a chance for parents to meet with the principal to engage in discussions about any aspect of school life. Feel free to grab lunch in the Heart of School and bring it over to the Mepantigan. Steve and Andy will front this week’s event, but the focus will be a guest speaker who is an expert on the subject of cyber-safety and kids, Greg Gebhart. (Greg also happens to be Pak Steve’s brother in law, and he’ll be speaking with our middle and high school students before lunch). He’ll be addressing the following topics and taking questions:

  • What kids do on line
  • Cyberbullying
  • What to do in relation to cyberbullying
  • Social networking sites
  • Who kids talk to
  • Sexting
  • Grooming
  • Setting rules and monitoring

Here are some links to Greg’s work:

Green Community, 1:30-2:25 PM:

Green Community, formerly known as the Changemaker Forum, is your chance as parents to get involved with various projects taking place at Green School. The idea is to build community and make a positive difference in the life of the school. At this week’s meeting , also taking place in the Mepantigan, we’ll hear about ongoing projects and brainstorm new ones for this term. Please do join us!

Green Community Assembly, 2:30-3:15 PM:

An all-school assembly that celebrates some of the student and parent-led projects taking place around the school. This week we’ll hear from our intrepid Model UN group, just back from a triumphant and world-dominating visit to Shanghai (see n article below), and learn more about the ongoing Green Manual project. Rumor has it there may even be a special musical performance by the Bamboo Staff Band…

Family Social Afternoon, 3:30-5:00 PM:

This is another way we try to build community. The focus of this month’s gathering is to celebrate the opening of the new bamboo bridge! We’ll have a ribbon-cutting, musical performances, and light refreshments, along with a Balinese blessing. Please note that we request all attendees to wear appropriate Balinese ceremonial clothing (for women: kebaya, sarong and sash; for men: udeng (head wear), inner sarong, saput (outer sarong ), sash.) If you are new to Bali still and haven’t yet acquired this, now would be a good time! Although we will have a few extra on hand.

Green School Granted CIS Membership!
In December, Ray Davis from the Council of International Schools, one of the world’s most important and prestigious accrediting bodies, spent an intensive two days at Green School, during which he observed many aspects of our operations and interviewed representatives from all major constituencies within the school, including teachers, students, parents, admin staff, and board members. The site visit was preceded by an intensive round of documentation. We’re excited to announce that the results are in, and they are very positive! Below, see excerpts of GS Managing Director Chris Thompson’s letter to staff last week

“I am very happy to update you that we have been awarded membership in the Council of International Schools. This was an excellent team effort and we were reviewed very strongly. We have some key areas to continue to work on and we have already addressed some of them and the others are in process. This is a major first step in the process to accreditation as not all schools pass this step.

We have already engaged CIS on the next steps for accreditation and we will update accordingly. This is a more lengthy and rigorous process.

I want to greatly thank the team cc-ed above for their support in this process. They were highly commendable to you and in my private discussions with Ray he was incredibly impressed with the organization. “

Along with all staff, Chris himself worked very hard to make this happen, and former GS Director Ron Stones (OBE) was also instrumental in initiating the process. Congratulations to all and next stop, accreditation!

Grade 11 Community Service project: “The Sanctuary”

Dear Green School community,

This year the grade 11 students have been working with an incredible foundation called Sacred Childhoods.  You will find on their website one of the current projects in Bali is called “The Sanctuary”

Throughout the term grade 11 has become devoted to helping the foundation & together with Natalia (the founder) we have discovered a perfect way the students can contribute.

The Sanctuary is a BIG project for SCF & any help they receive is greatly appreciated since the foundation is a Non-profit Organization. On January 30th & 31st the grade 11 class will go to the Sanctuary to help Sacred Childhoods build tree houses & a healing circle to add character & charisma to the landscape. Please inquire about any way your family could contribute to the Sanctuary project. Donations of wood/building material, statues for the healing circle, and anything else to add charm to the environment would be extraordinary.

Please bring in donations before January 30th & grade 11 students will take them directly to the site (and even take a picture, so you can see how your donation was used).

Thanks for any & all contribution & support!

Ibu Brynn

Plastic Bottle Project by Grade 10: Help Us Build Our Plastic Bottle Boat!

In our grade 10 Global Perspectives class, we are trying to raise awareness of the amount of garbage in Bali and surrounding regions and to promote alternative ways to up cycle rubbish so that it has a purpose.  As part of this, we will build a boat made entirely out of garbage and natural resources, specifically using a large amount of thrown-away plastic bottles.

You can help! We need a lot of plastic bottles with caps, and we would appreciate if you would bring your recyclable plastic bottles with caps to our collection point at Green School. We are aiming to get a total of 500 litres of plastic bottles in the space of 3 weeks because we need to be finished with the boat in 7 weeks.

You may deposit your contribution in the big card board box located in the heart of school next to the concierge. Its about 3 feet tall and it will be labeled “Put plastic bottles here, plastic bottle boat project.”

Every bottle counts!

Thanks in advance for your contributions…

Silas, Imogen, Alex, and Eddy

Drop-off Etiquette

I was going to re-write the message I received from a concerned parent last week but on second thought I realized I probably couldn’t have phrased it any better, so I will publish the following anonymously. Plus, I found it to be very funny!

“I know this is prob not your thing and everything but please, please can something be done about the drivers on the school run? One gripe is people stopping by the gates to let children out rather than driving into the lot and secondly it’s the way drivers go into the car park and then stop to let kids out by the steps not giving a (darn) that there’ s a queue of cars trying to park behind them. It’s driving me so mad!  Every morning it’s the same. Just had to get that off my chest before I go and rear -end someone.Obviously I need to meditate but is it really that hard to park up before letting out your carload of kids?”

I have noticed not just drivers but some GS parents also engaging in these practices. However, since receiving this we’ve talked to security about making sure that all vehicles park before letting kids out, and the problem seems to be on the wane.  Thanks to all for your cooperation, and thanks to the mystery correspondent for raising a concern in a way that made me smile. (Perhaps a good lesson for all of us?)

GS High School Students take Shanghai: Model UN China trip

Green school sent eight students to the Concordia International school Model United Nations conference in Shanghai China from Jan. 12 to Jan. 17th.  At the conference we represented the countries of China, Cuba, Mexico, and Libya.  The students who attended were  Imogen Fairs, Erinn Macfarlan, Leslie Mouradian, Pim Pettibone, Kathleen and Theresa Hamilton, Cormac Westbury, and Mike Natenzon.For a first conference, our students did really well. They each had to do an opening speech outlining their countries policies on the given topics.

Some examples of the topics are:  Human rights council- “Measures to ensure the rights, welfare and fair treatment of refugees and internally displaced persons in Somalia”,  General Assembly- “Establishing guidelines governing multinational corporate conduct in the developing world, with an emphasis on preventing labor exploitation and environmental degradation” and the Security Council- “How to deal with the current issues surrounding Syria”.  As you can see the topics push the students to become informed about current world issues and to develop solutions to these complex problems. MUN provides the students an opportunity to develop critical thinking skills in a real life situation , and it is amazing to see the solutions they develop.  If the adults in the world stopped to listen to the students more often I truly believe that it would be a better place.  Our students were hosted by the Concordia student and I believe that some life long friendships were formed.

After the conference we took two days so to take in the culture of Shanghai.  Some of the things we experienced were; a view of the city from the pearl tower, a Chinese acrobat show, The Yu Garden (the oldest in Shanghai), and the fake market.

Quotes from students:

“The entire trip was incredible. I think it was such a learning experience, being able to integrate within another international school community and meet likeminded kids. Also being able to see some of Shanghai was awesome, the entire conference and the trip was made by the people we were surrounded by. The Green School MUN group really did itself proud.” – Kathleen

“A truly amazing experience. I enjoyed meeting new people, representing Green School, and sight-seeing the remarkable parts of Shanghai. I would definitely do something exactly like this again.” – Mike

“It was cool representing China in the MUN Security Council as it meant we learned a lot of new things about how the UN works and how resolutions are written attempting to solve problems. It was awesome to be a P5 (Permanente five- US, UK, China, Russian Federation, France) country because they have significantly more power than the majority of countries in the UN. We also had the opportunity to experience the Chinese culture and make some awesome friends.” – Imogen

“An experience that I was lucky not to miss, and a learning experience that I will never forget”  Pim

Grade 8 Quest Program

This term from January to June, all Grade 8 students will be embarking on a Quest. This is a six-month intensive personal journey in which students discover and work closely on a topic of choice. The Quest, interwoven in subjects including English, Green Studies, Science, Technology, Art and Global Awareness, has the focal point centered on the Green Studies theme of Conservation and Social Justice. In the Quest, students will put together and complete a portfolio, 1500-3000 word research paper, a 15+ hour Community Improvement Project, and a final multi-media presentation given in June to all parents, mentors and teachers at Green School.

The Quest allows students to pick and work closely with an adult mentor and dive deeply into their topic of choice. Following the Cambridge Secondary 1 Curriculum Framework English outcomes for grade 8, students will be guided during Quest class by Ibu Mary. Class will be held throughout the term but a majority of the work will be completed out of the classroom. Many students have already picked their topics, which vary widely but include learning more about: Bali garbage and recycling issues, local orphanages and schools for the disabled, coral reef restoration, endangered Asian elephants, shark finning, organic gardening, bamboo business cards, recycled plastics for umbrellas and eating healthily with raw foods. For further information and questions on the Quest, please contact Ibu Mary:

Grade 5 Integrated Art-Science Project

Grade 5 made 3D Volcanic forms in Art focusing on the mighty Gunung Agung in Bali as inspiration.

This week Ibu Margot asked our new Science teacher Ibu Benny to help create a chemical reaction to create the impression of an eruption.

These photos show the dramatic impact of Baking Soda, Vinegar and Food Dye to add visual effect to the sculptures.

“Travel Green”

This holiday season, many of us probably did a bit of traveling, by planes, trains, automobiles, and the like! Our friends over at Thai Airways have shared with us some information about carbon credits and offsetting our carbon footprint while traveling.

This December, Thai Airways became the first airline in Asia to fly a commercial passenger flight using biofuels. They are pioneering the use of bio jet fuel in Asia and Southeast Asia, and hopefully inspiring other airlines to follow their lead!

Congratulations to Thai Airways for setting a positive example for other large companies

around the world!

What is carbon offsetting?

Car driving and flying consume energy and produce greenhouse gas emissions, particularly carbon dioxide (CO2), which contributes to climate change. Governments, businesses, and individuals are all responsible for reducing the carbon emissions they create.

You can compensate for your own emissions by paying someone to make an equivalent greenhouse gas savings. This is known as “carbon offsetting” and includes investment projects, such as renewable energy from wind farms and hydroplants.

Offsetting is not a “cure” for climate change; rather, the most effective way to combat climate change is to reduce our emissions. However, if done in the right way, offsetting can reduce the impact of our actions and help raise awareness on the issue!

What are carbon credits?

A carbon credit is a permit that represents one ton of carbon dioxide (CO2) that has either been removed from the atmosphere or saved from being emitted. Passengers can purchase carbon credits generated by certified renewable energy and energy efficient projects in developming countries that are verified to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Carbon credits create a market for reducing greenhouse emissions by giving monetary value to the cost of polluting the air.

Ibu Mona: Educating for Sustainability

Dear readers,

Welcome to the second post on topics related to “educating for sustainability”. I would like to thank you for your responses and feedback. It is encouraging to know that these articles are relevant and meaningful to you.

My aspiration is to initiate a dialogue with YOU – the readers of these articles. Please email me with your questions, suggestions and responses to

Response from one of the parents of GS: “Hi Mona, thank you for the article, I enjoyed reading it, can you please address ‘sustainability’ at some point”. Thank you and here it is:


Consider this: Quite simply, we have invented a new ecology, one in which, to an ever-increasing extent, all the resources of the world that previously nurtured many millions of species, are channelled toward just one. – Colin Tudge

The word sustainability is derived from the Latin sustinere (sus, up; tenere, to hold). Some meanings from the dictionaries for sustain are  “maintain”,  “support”, or “endure”. We can consider sustainability at a number of different levels, including the individual, a community, an organization, or a planet. It reminds us of our responsibility to pass on to our children and grandchildren a world with as many opportunities as the ones we inherited. The most popular definition of sustainability can be traced to a 1987 UN conference. It defined sustainability as:

“Meet present needs without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their needs“. (WECD, 1987).

We have lived by the assumption that what was good for us would be good for the world. While it has been commercially profitable for enterprises to use more natural resources and employing fewer people, in the 21st century we’ll have to use fewer natural resources while employing more people.  21st century well-being will require the nurturing and valuing of: Natural, Cultural, and Human capital. Isn’t it true that all wealth is ultimately, a product of a healthy environment!

As Fritjof Capra states, “Living sustainably means recognizing that we are inseparable part of the entire web of life, of nonhuman and human communities, and that enhancing the dignity and sustainability of any one community will enhance all the others” (Bioneers Conference workshop, 2003)

I found this animated video on sustainability relevant to the topic of discussion:

Now try this fun and educational activity with a group of friends or with your children to learn how to evaluate a product and see to what extent it is sustainable: Read more…


Free Teen Yoga!
taught by Janet Nicol.
Every Monday, starting January 30th.
Drop in Classes
3:30-4:30 in Grade 4 Class Room.
grade 8-11
Boys get extra house points if they make 5 classes!
Wear comfortable clothes and bring a mat if you have one

Hand Craft Group activities

3.30 pm – 4.30 pm
Join Pipit and learn stitching and sewing.
Clay – we made our own clay. Card – we decorate it with origami and/or quilling. Friendship bracelets
Age range between kindergarten to Grade 3
Venue – Grade 3 classroom

Every other Wednesday
Drop in classes
3:30-4:30 in The Heart of School
Ages 5-96 Welcome (first grade and under should have a guardian present)
Cost starts at Rp 40,000 per project

Wood Carving!
Tuesdays and Thursdays starting February 7th
3:30-4:30  HEART OF SCHOOL
4th  grade – Adult
Rp 160,000 per session (Rp 40,000 per class)

One month Sessions

Kit Cost R100,000 for tools
additional Rp5,000-Rp15,000 for raw wood piece per project.

Class Description:
This class is open to GS students, parents and the general public.  Students will learn how to carve in soft wood by a master carver from Mas Village, using traditional Balinese tools. During the first class, Ketut will teach technique for holding the tools and how to carve safely. After that, he will demonstrate and help everyone carve their individual piece.

Ketut will bring wood pieces with a rough outline for each project. After each session, students will bring home the item(s) they have carved.

Choose either Tuesday or Thursday.

Tuesday classes will carve a more simple, flat design, structured for the younger student, or person who has never held a carving tool in their hand and wants to ease into the art of carving.

Grade 4 and older.

Thursday classes are for the student who has either carved before, who is artistic, or adventurous! Pieces will be more detailed and 3 dimensional.

Grade 6 and older.

Four sessions to choose from, classes are on first come first served basis. Limit is 5 students per class.

Email Andi Morrell to sign up

Session 1

Tues                Thurs
7 Feb               09 Feb
14 Feb             16 Feb
21 Feb             23 Feb
28 Feb             01 Mar

Session 2

Tues          Thurs
6 Mar         08 Mar
13Mar        15 Mar***
20 Mar

Session 3

Tues              Thurs
3  Apr            05 Apr
10 Apr           12 Apr
17 Apr           19 Apr
24 Apr           26 Apr

Session 4

Tues               Thurs
1 May              03 May
8 May              10May
15 May            24 May ****
22 May            31 May

****Session 2 adjusted costs
3 Tuesday Classes

2 Thursday Classes
Rp 80,000

Coming soon … Hula Hooping with Angela …. Stay tuned to hear more about that.

Green School Calendars and upcoming holidays

Speaking of after-school activities, please check the GS events calendar regularly for an updated schedule: (You can get there via the sidebar on the homepage or through the community header at the top of the home page). In addition, here is a link to the school calendar (located under the General Info header): As you will see, we have a six-day weekend upcoming through the magical confluence of Galungan and a Professional Development Day for staff.

Class Ambassadors

Many of you have probably already heard from your Class Ambassador, aka Parent rep. If not, here is a current list. Class ambassadors act as an important conduit between teachers and parents and help to marshall support for the class in many ways. Thanks to all of you who have volunteered!

Pre-K Prep   Stacy Porteus         
Pre-K           Lianne Shwartz        
Kindy           Rachel Glitz              
Grade 1        Wendy Kassel         
Grade 2A      Antoinette Marie Zagata
Grade 2B      Michelle Frasher    
Grade 3        Sherri Dean            
Grade 4        Andi Morrell            
Grade 5        Linda Jenour           
Grade 6        Lorraine Allen         
Grade 7        Susan Karya           
Grade 8        Janet Nicol              
Grade 9        Renata Hamilton     
Grade 10      Anne Hockett          
Grade 11      Renata Hamilton     

Our own weekly news

To submit your own news updates for inclusion, please send it to by 12 noon each Wednesday.We cannot always guarantee inclusion and we may have to delay for a week at times.

Visit the Green School Website:
Visit the Green School Facebook Page:

Share: Digg . Facebook . Twitter . Google . Linkedin . StumbleUpon . Delicious . Email

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Get your own Avatar

Comments (1)

  1. Charlotte Palmer

    I had the pleasure of visiting Green School in July 2009. I had once been on the faculty of a private school on St. Croix in the U.S. Virgin Islands in the mid 1960s. At that time we were seen as very multicultural and concerned about our physical and social environment, too. Our school went through some “growing pains” which I was told were also being experienced by Green School at its first anniversary. I left a donation for the Balinese Scholarship Fund, and a collection of project proposals for any teachers who felt they would like to co-create some learning programs with various American schools in Florida, Georgia, and even Quito, Ecuador. The interim headmaster did not feel the school staff were ready to take on anything like that then.

    It’s almost 3 years later now. Green School is making marked progress in moving beyond
    the weakening effects of “culture shock” as many Bali newcomers become more integrated into their uniquely- created school and home environments. May Green School continue to thrive and earn its full CIS accreditation! Let me know if you have classes that would like to co-create projects with American schools. I’ll help you link with interested classes so we can all learn from and with each other.

    Cheers and blessings,
    Charlotte Palmer
    ESOL Resource Teacher
    Pinellas Park Elementary
    Pinellas Park, Florida, USA