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The Official ISM Community Publication


ISSBA: Politics at ISM || Gary Jerome: The Admissions Genius The Bearcat Cheerleaders || Farewell, THIMUN! Vicky Herrera: From a Students Eyes || MS Play: Alice in Wonderland Its a REAL Club! || MS AFC: Warriors of Change Inception by Language || IDeA Debate: Power. Color. Words.


The best thing about the future is that it comes one day at a time. Abraham Lincoln
by Anthony Gerard Lee Gokianluy and Isabel Martel Francisco In life, we are constantly faced with decisions that determine our future. Today, we may be faced with the IB and with changing class courses; in the near future, we will be forced to make even greater decisions: to get married or to start a business? It seems only yesterday that we were kindergarten students wondering where babies came from or about the boogeyman under the bed. Now, we find ourselves wondering about the macrocosm that is the future. We also realize that, as we grow, we are buffeted by expectations expectations from our peers, our parents, and our teachers, all of whom foresee us to be successful in the coming years. Who are we to let them down? Our legacies must be timeless. The future is vast and unknown, a continuous journey of growth and maturity. When the ES students have their Grade 4 to Grade 5 transition assembly, they gain greater choice in their classes. When the graduating MS students step up on the stage on the day of their Moving On Ceremonies, they enter a world that will be their greatest test of their wit and spirit: High School. And when Seniors receive that fateful College Admissions Decision email, they are struck with the realization that college and adulthood are not too far into the future. Day-byday, we must learn to face the unknown and to take command of the histories we write. As John Keating of the Dead Poets Society remarks, Carpe diem, seize the day! From Elementary School to Middle School to High School, we all have worked hard to make ourselves in the image that we seek others to see us in. As we close one book and begin another, we look back at our growth process and look to the distance for a glimpse of what is to come. And when we assume bigger responsibilities as heads of corporations or as policymakers in the government, we must always remember that whatever we do has a profound effect on us and on everyone around us. The question remains: what influence will we leave behind for the next generation? Newsflash SY 2010-2011 The final issue of Newsflash seeks to deal with the legacy of ISM and the community that comprises it. The extracurricular activities as well as the strong sports and service programs at our school have notable traditions that deserve mentioning. Our third issue hopes to capture the achievements and accomplishments that the ISM Bearcats are known for not only in terms of college acceptances, but also in the area of debate and the Fine and Performing Arts. Newsflash itself is committed to creating a history that encapsulates the dedication of its staff and the patronage of its readers. We, the Newsflash Editorial Board, appreciate the little things that come our way and are determined to make the most out of all of it, whether in the past, the present, and the future. Oh, how time flies! To the Class of 2011: Let us make History!

Editor in Chief: Managing Editor: HS Coordinator: MS Coordinator: ES Coordinator: Layout Director: Layout Team: News Editors: Perspectives Editors: Features Editors: Photography Editor: Staff Writers:

The Legacy of Our Lives

Anthony Gokianluy Isabel Martel Francsico Laura Lehmann Kaye Kagaoan Minsoo Woo Jonathan Moran Samata Pandey Katie Thompson Shloka Sharan Nicole Calo Chris Ong Michi Ferreol Krystal Kang Angel Feliciano Akshar Bonu Esther Park Sofia Benares Amanda Saban Mahek Tulsiani Alyzza Acacio Alexei Acacio Louisa Cotterhill Kimberly Go Andrea Ayala Michaela Limcaoco Gaea Morales Julia Saubier Frances Tanchanco Eun Young (Alice) Lee Manni Cavalli-Sforza Antonio Roxas Ellice Tordesillas Denise Francisco Thomas Bell Pedro Roxas Sam Gurnamal Sera Yun Mara Celine Javier Moonie Sohn Ian Luo Katie Thompson Minsoo Woo Samantha Ramsey Ms. Stephanie Hagedorn

Contributing Writers:

Online Editor: Staff Photographers: Business Manager: Editor in Chief: Anthony Gerard Lee Gokianluy Managing Editor: Isabel Martel Francisco Advisor:

Newsflash - Volume 5, Issue 3

Perspectives Features
p.10 The Evolving ISM Curriculum Akshar Bonu p.18 Gary Jerome: The Admissions Genius Antonio Roxas p.21 ISSBA: Politics at ISM Julia Saubier and Andrea Ayala p.24 Vicky Herrera: From a Students Eyes Mahek Tulsiani p.28 The Awesome Class of 11 Guidance Department p.30 Great Expectations Ellice Tordesillas p.35 I Think, Therefore IB. Denise Francisco p.43 Its a REAL Club! Julia Saubier p.48 The Grade 4 Ambassador Program Krystal Kang


p.4 Extracurricular Inside the Clubs Chris Ong and Nicole Calo p.7 Go Bearcats! Amanda Saban p.12 Too Foreign? Laura Lehmann p.14 How do Peer Helpers help us? Eun Young (Alice) Lee p.20 Grade 4 MS Tour and Talk Michaela Limcaoco p.30 Technology in the World Around Us Nicole Calo p.32 Farewell, THIMUN! Esther Park p.34 MUNITY: A Pressing Opportunity Anthony Gokianluy p.36 Our Second Parents: Guidance Counselors Gaea Morales p.41 Light Up a School - Light up a Life Manni Cavalli-Sforza

p.26 Honoring Vicky Sycip Herrera p.50 Service Learning at ISM, 2010 - 2011

p.5 International Family Fun Day Sofia Beneras p.6 Comic Relief Frances Tanchanco p.9 MUNA: The Latest and Greatest MUN Thomas Bell p.13 Football Team Interview Pedro Roxas p.15 Diversity Like No Other Kimberly Go and Alyzza Acacio p.16 CULCON Sam Gurnamal p.17 Muses in Motion: The HS Finale Concert Anthony Gokianluy p.19 Swim Team Interview Pedro Roxas p.23 IDeA Debate - Power. Color. Words. Sera Yun p.27 Taking the Leap Samantha Ramsey p.27 IB Film Festival 2011 Katie Thompson p.32 The Athletes Corner Kimberly Go p.33 Rugby Team Interview Pedro Roxas p.37 Basketball Team Interview Pedro Roxas p.40 Battle of the Bands Mara Celine Javier p.45 GIN Moonie Sohn p.46 Warriors of Change Alexei Acacio p.46 Alice in Wonderland Louisa Cotterhill p.47 For the Love of the Game: ES Sports Day Kimberly Go p.49 Middle School Life Outside the Classroom Alyzza Acacio

p.18 p.21

Cover & Inside Photo by Isabel Martel Francisco


Extracurricular Activities: Inside the Clubs


By Chris Ong, Grade 11, and Nicole Calo, Grade 12

The Newsflash Editorial Board, 2010-2011

he CAS form is one of those things that arouse such different responses and feelings from both teachers and students alike, reflecting the ISM populations differing viewpoints on the issue of extra-curricular activities. ISMs range of extra-curricular activities is incredibly large, an intricate web of organizations with their own leaders and members working within the ISM community to serve the large society. But with all this emphasis the school gives on things being done outside school, what significance does it really have with regards to the students of the school? Extra-curricular activities, especially service activities, are an integral part of ISMs core values. Many advocate extra-curricular activities because they nurture the passion and drive within students to do what they love and become well-rounded individuals. Mr. Woods says, students who fully engage in all of the wonderful CAS opportunities at ISM will become more aware of themselves and others, learn new skills, engage in new projects, work in teams, learn to collaborate and be able to reflect and apply what they learn to new experiences. In fact, much of the organization and leadership scenarios within ISM reflect very well what happens beyond high school and even beyond university, and joining extra-curricular activities enables stu-

Courtesy of Anthony Gokianluy dents to learn life lessons early and be able to apply these when the need arises in the future. The results of ISMs afterschool activity program have been an increase in not only the number of clubs but also the leadership capabilities of the ISM student body. However, like every issue, there is a flip side to ISMs after-school activity program. It should be noted that, like anything subjective, it is questionable whether joining the extra-curricular activities that ISM and the IB demand actually allows students to nurture their passion for activities they love doing. Considering the amount of school workload students receive, do students still have time to actually enjoy their other activities instead of rushing through them to study for a test? Do students forsake activities they love because they think another activity might give them more CAS hours, or perhaps give them a better chance of getting accepted at the university they want? Akshar Bonu, a Sophomore, says, its unfortunate how many people decide to use extra-curricular activities for their transcript, making themselves spend hours and hours doing something they dread. Every hour spent would be an hour lost and really, Im sure college admission officers would see the lack of passion and depth that comes from these people -- so really, it would have no extra benefit in getting accepted into Harvard or Yale. So what do we make of ISMs extra-curriculars? Clearly, it has its benefits, but sometimes these are forgotten in the scramble for leadership positions and credentials for college. However, perhaps that is up to the student and not the program itself. After all, Mr. Woods makes a good point: I always say CAS makes you happy and I truly believe it. Imagine spending four years in ISM and never playing on a team, singing in the choir, joining a club or attending an ICARE trip!

The Philippine Cultural Club officers courtesy of the Philippine Cultural Club

By Sofia Benares, Grade 11


Family Fun Day


nternational Family Fun Day. These four words mean different things to different members of the ISM community. For many parents, it means getting to spend a day with their kids and learning to become part of the school community. For many teachers, its a chance to spend a fun day in school that doesnt require grading any papers. For many High Schoolers, it means a chance to exhibit their clubs/councils while getting yet another excuse not to do homework on a Saturday. To many Elementary and Middle Schoolers, it means shaving cream. And lots of it. But to almost all members of the ISM community, IFFD presents the same thing: a day of uncomplicated fun. IFFD this year was moved to the Elementary field and boasted as big a crowd as ever before. Everyone showed up to partake in the celebrations. Like every year, the booths manned by various clubs and councils decorated the field. These organizations offered food and beverages, such as the Chinese Cultural Clubs extremely popular bubble milk tea, as well as various activities and services, such as REAL Clubs treasure hunt, a giant inflatable slide by PCC (the Philippine Cultural Club), and FACs (the Fine Arts Council) face painting and tattoo service. But with children running around with drippingwet hair, there was no question which booths were the most popular: all the ones that boasted signs reading shaving cream! and water guns! Isabel Benares, a High School freshman, exclaimed that My hair smelled like shaving cream for days as a result of IFFD. IFFD also boasted a talented repertoire of performances. Student bands, solo vocalists, and even instrumental numbers graced the IFFD stage. Favorites, it seemed, included the vocal duet of Isabel Francisco and Stephan Chan, who sang their own renditions of Halo and No Air. The International Banquet at the end of the day is always a crowd-pleaser. An IFFD ticket allows you entrance into this smorgasbord of international delicacies. The Japanese booth, offering a variety of sushi, was first to be cleaned out, but the other countries booths were not too far behind. Right after IFFD came the two hour long Band Aid, a collaboration between the Jazz Band, two Advanced Dance classes, and other contributing and volunteering performers. Band Aid featured songs such as I Will Survive, Aint No Other Man, and Kick. The performers spent weeks and weeks preparing for the show prior to opening night. Chelsea Hamaguchi, one of the dancers, reflected that the process to put on a show like Band Aid is tough, but when you are on stage, you realize it was all worth it, -- and it definitely was. All the performers hard work definitely paid off and many audience members agreed that Band Aid was an extremely entertaining performance and may have even been better than last years show! Band Aid was an excellent finale to what had been an amazing day. It is hard for me to see how next years IFFD could possibly top this one, but for many Elementary and Middle Schoolers, and, of course, some fun-loving High Schoolers, the answer could not be easier: more shaving cream. And really, what else do you need?

Pictures courtesy of Jan-Willem van Heeswijk

Comic Relief
n order to help raise money for the flood victims in Pakistan, the Southeast Asian Cultural Club (SACC), led by Karishma Kainth, Sarishti Mer, Anushay Afnan, Rabia Shakeel, and Heba Asad, gathered together to hold a very exciting event: COMIC RELIEF. Comic Relief would showcase some of the comedic talents of both ISM faculty members and students alike. On January 21, 2011, High School students, for a 100 peso fee were given the option to come to school in red -a color used around the world to spread awareness would be donated to the cause. The school day ended with a good laugh from the Comic Relief event with food for sale, courtesy of the ISM Cooking Club. It was an afternoon filled with surprises. Hosted by Prerna Bhargava and Manni Cavalli-Sforza, SACC was able to organize quite a successful event. Teachers performed various acts ranging from stand up comedy to raps and videos. Mr. Thompson and Mr. Tyler Sy


By Frances Tanchanco, Grade 11

brought life to the event with numerous hilarious acts; Mr. Ayling and Mr. Kopp showed their innovation with a parody video while Mrs. Barton and Ms. Mohr dressed to impress with a memorable rap to top it off. Students performed Whose Line is it Anyway?, and A Very Potter Musical, which was directed by Prerna Bhargava and Gabby Pascuzzi. The much awaited surprise act was an impromptu performance by teachers, who were completely unaware of their participation in the event. Presented with a video, the teachers were given the task to prepare a dance in just forty minutes. And, as if the night could not get any better, Mrs. Ayling, Ms. Hamilton, Ms. Murphy, Mrs. Reilly, and Mrs. Thompson had a breakdance battle, showing off moves never seen before. Ms. Murphy surprised the crowd and showed off her skills doing the worm, while Mr. Reilly and Mr. Dingrando did a Scottish to English translation: Scottish As a Second Language (SASL). The audience loved the show, and with such a good turn out, SACC was able to raise nearly fifty thousand pesos for the flood victims of Pakistan. A truly amazing feat!!!

by Paulina Sotto


Courtesy of Rachel Riker

Go, Bearcats!

By: Amanda Saban, Grade 10

next school year, the team is aiming to participate in the National Cheerleading Competition. In the near future, they are hoping to take it to an international level through the induction of cheerleading as an IASAS sport. Ambition, determination and perseverance are vital characteristics needed for sports to thrive, all of which are traits that both the members and the coaches are not short of. The survival of cheerleading as an activity can be attributed to the constant initiative and enthusiasm of several people. In 2004, Ms. LaRita Hamilton, a High School English teacher had expressed interest in starting a cheerleading program. Along with Ms. Yek Barlongay, who instructs dance, several members in Dance Company were recruited as essentially ISMs first cheerleading squad, making their debut at basketball games. In 2006, Ms. Shannon Grabow (known to the cheerleaders as Coach Bo, an Elementary School teacher, was hired. She too shared Ms. Hamiltons enthusiasm for cheerleading, and together, they became pivotal figures in the rise of cheerleading at ISM. Both have established cheerleading as an after school activity for Elementary School, and soon organized a Middle School squad. However, in 2008, lack of inter-

heering at IASAS, definitely the highlight of the year so far,

says Alessandra Panares, a High School student who helped in reviving the cheerleading initiative in ISM. Although ISM currently has a strong athletic foundation with IASAS sports, its cheerleading base is still in infancy even though cheerleading began back in the 50s. Nonetheless, this school years basketball season IASAS tournament, marked the Bearcat cheerleaders first appearance at any IASAS event. The cheerleaders have made regular appearances at various games throughout this years second season IASAS sports events, and have chanted the Bearcat spirit to new heights. It was so exciting! says Ms. McCoy, one of the squad coaches, regarding the opportunity of performing several jammed-pack fields and courts. We have been at games all season long, even when there were not as many people in attendance, so it was great to have such a big crowd to cheer in front of. Overall, the revival of cheerleading in ISM has made a positive impact on not only the athletes, but also on the coaches.

Mr. William Brown, High School Principal and IASAS boys rugby coach, enthuses: From the rugby atmosphere, at the home games, it added a whole new dimension. It was awesome. JJ Yim, of the girls IASAS basketball team, and a Sophomore, shares: I think that they inspire the teams in a way, and as a player, [I felt that] they were there to support us all the way, Kara Maeda, another Sophomore, of the girls IASAS touch rugby team, agrees: They maintain school spirit and pump me up for games, Just this year, the cheerleaders have not only been able to make themselves known throughout the ISM student body, gain exposure and acted as an eye-opener for future potential squad members, but their performances at the ISM home games have allowed the other five IASAS schools a glimpse into the Bearcat spirit. When asked about where she sees the squad in the next couple of years, Alessandra says, Hopefully inspiring the school and competing! Although I feel like weve made strides in helping out school spirit and gaining the support of the school, theres always room to do more and Im hoping that this years underclassmen and future cheerleaders will help to carry that forward. By

est and numbers caused a brief hiatus for cheerleading as an after school activity. Last year, then Sophomore Alessandra Panares had noticed that there was a possibility of once again creating a cheerleading initiative. After getting in touch with Ms. Grabow, ISMs present squad was constructed through word of mouth. Currently, Ms. Grabow and Ms. Maya McCoy are coaching the High School varsity squad, with Middle School serving as the Junior Varsity squad. Both coaches are more than qualified to begin a legacy of cheerleading at ISM. Despite the debate surrounding cheerleadings status as a sport, cheerleading practice is far from relaxing. Our typical training sessions are filled with lots of laughter and fun, but also lots and lots of sweat, explains Alessandra. The squad meets three to four times week, with one hourlong session dedicated to fitness with Coach Richard Harding. The remainder of the week is spent on the finer aspects of cheerleading. An hour is generally spent on stretches, jumps and flexibility, followed by sideline cheers, while the last hour is dedicated to stunts and dances. Towards the end of second season, in preparation for IASAS, more emphasis was placed on the dances that were to be performed at half time. Mr. Steve Dodd, assistant coach of the girls touch rugby team explains: Its an activity that is big in this country and also in the USA. [Its for those] who might not consider themselves sporty or jocks, but still allows them to be part of

the competition. It also helps that the squad shares a bond as not only teammates, but as friends. Alessandra describes how this is applicable to cheerleading: When youre doing things like stunting, its vital that you trust implicitly the people that youre stunting with, otherwise things start to go wrong. Those with a gymnastics or dance background would most certainly be beneficial to the cheerleading squad. However, the amount of enthusiasm and dedication shown by the squad compensates and will most certainly help the progression of the program. But whether as a branch of dance or gymnastics, and as characteristic of the external competition or internal team bonding, one thing is crucial to strengthen its existence in the roster of ATAC activities: The team needs to be advertised more and treated as a big sport, such as rugby or basketball, says freshman Shannon Linell. In spite of the positive response it has recently received from the ISM community, the cheerleading program still has several obstacles to overcome, primarily due to their only brief period of reestablishment. But many people are enthusiastic to continue on with the program. Both Ms. Grabow and Ms. McCoy have agreed that one thing is essential to the growth of our cheerleading team: numbers. Cheer clinics, which have previously been (and will hopefully continue to be) offered, thus have been identified as one great way to entice those who are interested about learning the foundations of cheerleading. Not only will these cheer

clinics increase school-wide interest and familiarize members with the sport, but it would also eventually allow the cheerleaders to perform other facets of the cheerleading, such as dance, gymnastics, and stunting which are definite crowd pleasers. As the year goes on, the cheerleaders continue to promote school spirit and hope to gather more potential members. This group of girls may be on the bounds of starting one of the biggest teams and most exciting competitions that could come to ISM! With more support, continued training and time, the cheerleading team may bloom into something spectacular!

Courtesy of Rachel Riker

1950s ISM Cheerleaders, courtesy of Kawayan

MUNA: The Latest and Greatest MUN

his year marked the second time the International School Manila participated in the Model United Nations Assembly, shortened and colloquially known as MUNA. With the full and ready spirit of enthusiasm that ISM students are known for, a large number of those who do Model United Nations in ISM (MUNers) participated. Participants ranged from those who went to the THIMUN conference in The Hague, those who went to the IASAS conference in Singapore, even to freshmen who had never been to a conference and for whom this was the first time. The conference venue this year was held at the Asian Institute of Management. Here, the President, the Past Presidents, and the Future Presidents of the Rotary Club of Makati, Jose P. Rizal, sponsored and hosted what became a wonderful two day conference. Prior to


By Thomas Bell, Grade 12

this conference, all delegates had been working hard, preparing resolutions on important international issues to which they had been assigned to in their respective committees. In addition, they researched and prepared a statement based on the policy of the country they represented. This work helped make the ISM delegation the most prepared out of all the schools that sent participants. On the first day, the delegates were divided between their separate committees, reflecting those found in the actual United Nations. In these smaller groups, the committees debated multiple resolutions over the topics they had been assigned; each made speeches to the other delegates supporting or rejecting the resolution at hand and arguing based on their countrys policy. Other delegates responded with points of information directed towards those at the podium to answer any queries on the topic and on the resolution. On the second day, the General Assembly met, with all the del-

egates participating together. One resolution that was passed from each individual committee was debated in the Plenary, a gathering of all the committees. It was here in front of all participating delegates that ISM shined, with multiple speeches from many ISM students, from freshmen to seniors. In the end, everyone in the conference found it to be a thoroughly enjoyable experience and no-one regretted going, despite the loss of 20 odd hours that could have been spent on the coming Mondays math investigations (for the Seniors)! For two delegates, Thomas Bell and Leandro Leviste (nominated Best Delegate of the Conference), this was their last High School MUN conference. Also commended were Mariella Salazar (Best Youth Assembly member) and Shloka Sharan (Best-Looking Chair). They, along with many others, will most certainly be returning next year for another MUNA experience.

Pictures courtesy of Charlene Mamaril


The Evolving ISM Curriculum

Everything changes but change itself. John F. Kennedy
One hundred years ago, at the pinnacle of European strength, no one could have imagined the fall that was coming in the near future. When writing philosophical papers two hundred years ago, renowned philosophers John Locke and Jean-Jacques Rousseau would have never conceived how interdependent our world has become today, thus disproving their theories and notions from the past. The demands and unpredictability of the 21st century can be likened to a river constantly changing its path. Educational institutions often get the raw end of this change because they are constantly adapting to meet the demands of the new information age. Textbooks become outdated and must be rewritten, and curriculums are recycled and redrawn. The year 2011 will be host to these new curricular changes within our very school, and the class of 2012 and 2013 will be the first to test out new waters. In High School, the International Baccalaureate (IB) program is taught continuously over Grades 11 and 12. Commonly, the IB diploma has been taken up by many students, in which diploma candidates must follow the traditional framework of the IB diploma program hexagon, which aims to provide a rigorous educational experience across

By Akshar Bonu, Grade 10

six academic subjects consisting of Language, second Language, Experimental Sciences, Mathematics, Individual and Societies, and the Arts. But the administration has decided to offer a new Diploma, that is, a trans-disciplinary diploma with the introduction of the class Environmental Systems and Societies (ESS) that provides credits for both science and social studies on the IB hexagon of harmony. In addition, there are new classes such as, Computer Science, Statistics,

and the up and coming English courses which all create more flexibility in the once rigid structure of the IB Diploma. By doing so, the administration hopes to encourage more students to pursue IB Diplomas. These changes are bold and exciting, opening a new chapter of skills and opportunities for the students of ISM. Mr. Eamonn Hobbins, a major advocate and teacher of Environmental Systems and Societies next year, states confidently that ESS is a great unique addition, and is extremely relevant in its contents. As Mr. Hobbins summarized, It is a holistic subject that intertwines the scientific and humanitarian approaches to create a broader understanding of the environmental issues facing our society. The course involves the study of environmental processes both local and global in addition to the knowledge, methodologies and skills necessary in analyzing these environmental issues. In other words, it is the fusion of the sciences with social studies, corresponding to the most relevant world issues. One of the most intriguing aspects is that the course sees how different levels of society contribute and can possibly solve environmental problems. For those interested by the validity of contentious environmental issues such as Global Warming, this course also opens the doors for

Pictures courtesy of Angel Feliciano


fruitful debates and discussions regarding our Earth. Not only does it make us more open-minded to environmental issues that are of great concern and will become more important in the current generations era, but it also develops analytical skills, debate skills and instills empathy. For environmental warriors and those who foresee a future in environmental engineering this course is a perfect match. The unique nature of ESS requires students to assess their own impacts on the environment in addition to directly addressing the mitigation of the harms. As it is a trans-disciplinary class it has a distinctive mesh of Group 3 (Social Studies) and Group 4 (Sciences) teaching styles a far more humanitarian and systematic approach. Arguably the greatest benefit to these changes for any student, beyond the already fantastic subject matter, is the diversity it provides. For the first time in ISM history, a student wishing to take Computer Science can take it as an elective in Group 6 (Arts) instead of Group 5, according to Computer Science teacher Fred Biggar. It gives rise to further possibilities since the old Diploma never offered such a variety of classes, with more still to come. To call it a godsend would be an understatement as for years, students have viewed the hexagon of harmony as restricting and contradicting (wherein comes the most extreme of phrases the hexagon of hell.) At long last, students find relief and have more power in their choices suited to their individual interests. Furthermore, the International Baccalaureate program has brought a new, exciting prospect to the English Department, which will be implemented during the school year 2011-2012. The Language & Literature course is very real world as it involves many different aspects that were never treated in English classes before. The new English course, Language and Literature, has, obviously, one big new aspect: Language, says Peter Curry, one of the teachers of the subject next year. Traditionally, IB English purely had its basis in Extensive Literature, but given the rise of media and how language is evolving, this course reveals how literature is immersed in the world around us. Surviving in what many consider the final frontier the cyber world demands an impeccable under-

standing of chat language, acronyms, such as my favorite LOL and many more cultural advances that begin to label the society that we reside in. To truly grasp these changes brought about by the digital age, this class will involve learning the progression of language from the time of Shakespeare to Facebook.

With Language and Literature, the ability to analyze texts and identify their hidden purpose is honed especially important for the newer generation surrounded by media almost in every conscious second. Furthermore, it creates empathetic readers; students who can read a text and appreciate it knowing its historical and cultural context. Undeniably, the response to this course has been overwhelmingly positive. Tim Thompson, a Grade Ten student, who made his course selections, says, Language and Literature seems very interesting and relevant. To understand how language has evolved and is used in things like Facebook and Twitter is fascinating. I cant wait to take it next year. Tim echoed the opinions of a majority of the batch. IB Literature, is not an endangered species and will continue to be integrated into this English curriculum as it is the staple ingredient to a phenomenal English course. With the introduction of new IB classes that will hopefully broaden the scope of learning experiences, students ultimately remain cautiously optimistic. On paper they seem great and relevant, interesting and unique alternatives to traditional classes; however, because they are new classes, no one really can guarantee them living up to the high expectations they currently have. In the end, one is putting their hand into a bag of jellybeans as no one knows what color theyll get. Though knowing ISMs worldclass faculty, it is highly probable these changes will hit the nail on the head.

Arguably the greatest benefit to these changes for any student, beyond the already fantastic subject matter, is the diversity it provides.
The class also explores the progression of language from communication based perspective to one of power and propaganda. Marketing and real world use of good old interpretational, analytical literature skills are unraveled and explained since they constantly influence us on a daily basis. Appearing to be harmless, advertising and propaganda come with opinion and bias tools for hiding information, mischaracterizing political opponents and persuading the masses. We can study such aspects as jargon (how to prevent people from understanding), how the media uses specific language or how advertising and public relations campaigns use persuasive techniques to try to make us think in such a way, adds Mr. Curry. Simply outlined, Language and Literature introduces the study of non-literary texts, arguably in my opinion, highly relevant in our Globalizing world. However, Mr. Curry is quick to remind me before I get carried away it is of course still fifty percent Literature, as classic texts and analytical skills are necessary skills. The skills that are particular to Language and Literature are partially based around the notion that we understand in different ways depending on all kinds of things like cultural background, class, education, politics, gender, religion or value systems, explains Mr. Curry. With any changes being made to a curriculum, the new additions must bring something new and valuable to the table otherwise they are rendered redundant.

Courtesy of Isabel Martel Francisco


Too Foreign?


By: Laura Lehmann, Grade 11

es. Besides benefiting relations with a variety of clients, proficiency in Foreign Languages displays the will to learn and assimilate complex systems of informationundoubtedly marking it a valuable asset. But above all matters of individual success, learning a foreign language has global benefits that extend to future generations. Fostering the acceptance of diversity, it is one among many steps to a more peaceful and more tolerant society. As a model international community, ISM has greatly valued this concept. With Grade Five now in Middle School, the school has introduced foreign languages to younger students. Studies have proven that children who learn a language before the onset of adolescence are much more likely to bear native pronunciations. This proficiency is attributed to intricate physiological changes and will ultimately benefit students for years to come. With the additional implementation of summer immersion programs in France and Spain, the Foreign Language department at ISM is finally gaining its long-deserved praise. Offering both short term and long term benefits, the study of foreign languages is a valuable asset to the ISM curriculum.

ince the late twentieth century, foreign language education has been implemented into schools across the globe. Although it is often undermined by other more core subjects, it may in fact be the most essential and benefiting aspect of school curriculums. With globalization shrinking the world to miniature extremes, the perceived irrelevancy of Foreign Language is a massive and even harmful misconception. Cultivating empathic awareness and issuing new opportunities, foreign language is the ultimate key to a safer, healthier and happier worldand it is far more important than we think. According to IB Spanish professor, Seora Adrianna Vargas, learning new languages helps us appreciate those who have different traditions and cultures. In a setting like ISM, this benefit is especially appealing. As a school and an international community, ISM thrives on both uniformity and diversity. Despite its countering ideologies, it has continually fostered a school-spirited setting, with all due gratitude to Foreign Language education. Exposing students to various cultures, Foreign Language education builds tolerance and acceptance. It introduces not only the linguistics but also the beliefs and experiences

of cultures across the globe. Extinguishing bias and misconception, it ultimately builds a more emphatic environment for students, parents, and faculty alike. Foreign Language education has benefited academics to valuable extremities as it creates a comfortable setting for development and learning. Calling for critical and creative thinking, it challenges the brain with entirely foreign fields and ultimately strengthens its problem solving capacity. According to a report by the College Entrance Examination Board, foreign language has even enhanced performance in the Scholastic Aptitude Test (SAT). Findings prove that students who had studied four or more years of Foreign Language scored higher on the SAT Verbal Section than those who had studied four or more years of any other subject. Score increases were not limited to the English portions and extended even across the Math section. Clearly, the benefits of foreign language education dispersed among other academic departmentseven, in fact, to the business world. In a recent study by Princeton University, competency in a second language was declared as one of the five most sought for job skills. With the diversity of clients in the global marketplace, enterprises increasingly value employees with proficiency in various languag-

Picture courtesy of Angel Feliciano


Football Team Interview

Freshman: Amar Wadii
What do you want to achieve?
I want to get better at what I do. I want to improve my technique further so I can play better.


By Pedro Roxas, Grade 10

What experiences do you look forward to?

I look forward to IASAS next year since it was really fun this year and I want to go back.

What is something you enjoyed this year?

I really enjoyed IASAS this year. Bonding with the team was very exciting for me.

Senior: Yami Jinadu

How long have you been playing for?
Ive been playing since 4th Grade.

What do you love most about this sport?

Pictures courtesy of Sarita Morris I love that it seems simple on the surface, but is possibly the most complex team sport.

What awards have you won?

For ISM, the only award I have won is MVP (Most Valuable Player).

What was your favorite part of this season?

I think my favorite part of the season was our first game against Faith Academy because it was the first time we really looked like a strong team with good chemistry and determination.


How do Peer Helpers help us?


By Eun Young (Alice) Lee, Grade 9

hat is the first thing that comes to mind when you hear the word Peer Helper? A bunch of students traipsing around in bright red shirts? A bunch of do-gooders? Or does nothing come to your mind at all? By definition alone, the Peer Helpers are a group of students who volunteer to help the school community in a variety of ways. Peer Helpers, a moniker for the welcoming committee, are responsible for one of the main events of the year, the New Student Orientation (NSO). For members of the Peer Helpers, this is a highly anticipated event and ideas are gathered from the previous years. It is an ISM tradition that a day before the new term or school year begins, new students assemble in the Little Theater. With these students, a sense of awkwardness fills the air and glances of uncertainty are thrown at each other. To ease the tension, ice breaker games are introduced as part of the Peer Helpers program. This certainly melts away any out of place feelings that one may have when first walking into the room. Then, a PowerPoint presentation packed with pertinent school information such as calendars, the curriculum, clubs, sports, school facilities, and more are viewed by the students. A tour of the purpose built campus is also given. The orientation ends with new students getting to know each other over a variety of foods prepared by the Peer Helpers themselves. Chris-

tian Wilkerson, a fellow NSO participant said, NSO was such a great experience for me. I got to meet new students and it was a lot of fun organizing it and introducing people to our school. During exam weeks in the High School, the Peer Helpers distribute stress packages to help ease the tension and anxiety. Posters deck the walls with humor and advice of dos and donts throughout this grueling period. Special videos are produced to raise awareness regarding ISMs Go Green campaign. Members try to make themselves available to deal with any personal student issues faced by any person of the High School population. According to Caitlin Willnow, a current Peer Helper, being a Peer Helper gives me a sense of having a purpose, as clich as it sounds. Being a part of a group that is meant to introduce people to a situation where they need to make new students feel comfortable in a new environment, can also be challenging to the Peer Helpers since they have to work with new people. Its an interesting group, as well as rewarding. You get to meet new people, interact with different grades, as well as help out with any social events. Its fantastic. Although the Peer Helpers are not always in the lime light, they are a group of dedicated and important contributors of a balanced school community. Often very humble and working behind the scenes, they are an invaluable committee of the International School Manila.

Pictures of the New Student Orientation courtesy of Zaina Ahmed


Diversity Like No Other

he International School Manila (ISM) is like a model of the world as there are a wide variety of nationalities represented. The students at ISM each come from their own unique background and culture, and International Day is a yearly tradition for the Elementary students at ISM in which the diversity of this institution is celebrated. Mr. Simon Gillespie, ES Principal, claims that ISM boasts over 70 nationalities and this is one small way that we can recognize what makes our school community special.


By Kimberly Go, Grade 9 and Alyzza Acacio, Grade 9

This exciting day, April 15, 2011, begins with the flag ceremony. Students, dressed in their distinct national costumes, reveal their nations flag, as everyone in the ES playground stands by watches. The organizers make sure that each ISM nationality is represented, as it is after all, a day to celebrate everyone in the community. The students may dress in their respective traditional costumes to show their pride for their own nation, or even choose to wear that of another country. As International Day is packed with many culturally diverse activities, there will always be something new for everyone to do. A variety of games are prepared to promote the appreciation of culture, from patintero (Philippines) to Gong Gi (Korea). Music is also an important aspect of culture and the Elementary Students hold a concert on this day where students, as Rura from the Fourth Grade puts it, sing [songs] from different part[s] of the world. Food is also essential for this fun day and this International Day is a time when the ISM family can enjoy food from all over the world as parents, students and staff prepare a feast for everyone to enjoy. Rura has been a very eager participant of this day, having brought food and [dressed] up every year, even going as far as to call International Day her favorite day of the school year. International Day may only last for a day, but surely many benefits can be derived from this special, meaningful

occasion. Mr. Gillespie states that, International Day is one way of building a sense of community in the Elementary School. It also supports the notion that we are all different, and can come together and learn as one community. People may have their differences, but having a day like this in the Elementary School will provide these children with unbiased knowledge and understanding about those who are different from them. This prepares them for the diverse world outside the walls of ISM.

Pictures courtesy of Angel Feliciano




By Sam Gurnamal, Grade 11

The IASAS Dance, Debate, and Forensics participants

he Interscholastic Association of Southeast Asian Schools Cultural Convention (CULCON) is truly one of the finest exhibitions of talent within the IASAS community. For those who are unfamiliar with the event, Cultural Convention, or what is commonly known as CULCON, is separated into different events. One is comprised of Dance, Forensics, and Drama, which will be held this year at the International School Kuala Lumpur, and the other is Art and Music, which will be hosted in the Jakarta International School.

Through the years that ISM has participated in CULCON, the school has had the incessant capacity to excel. Impromptu speaking representative, Julia Saubier, says, gold, silver, and bronze medals for ISM are ordinary and we are eager to gain more this year. But aside from just Forensics and Debate, CULCON also has a non-competitive side. This year, IASAS Drama is thrilled to perform their adaptation of Henry Fieldings, A History of Tom Jones. It is a story about a boy named Tom who finds himself in a vigorous lust for his neighbors daughter, Sophia Western. It is a romantic comedy which IASAS Drama participant, Laura Lehmann, describes as a funny, quirky eighteenth century piece that modern audiences will enjoy. The all-star cast ensures that it

Courtesy of the Fine Arts Office will undoubtedly be an IASAS play to look out for. Similarly, IASAS Dance this year is proud to present their piece entitled Spectra. The piece is inspired by their encapsulating theme of frequency, which is conveyed through the physics of light and sound. This will involve much contemporary dancing with a mix of tap dance and point. IASAS Dance Freshman, Stephanie Kim, elaborates, throughout the whole dance, we are using our bodies to show the waves of frequency. Members of IASAS Dance state that the theme this year seems to differ greatly from themes of past years. IASAS Dance representative, Sam Villanueva, explains, Thats the beauty of IASAS Dance. Every year we come up with something new and fresh. Participants of IASAS Vocals this year are following a thematic approach, performing Twa Tanbou, a clear snapshot of African culture. The rhythmic piece holds sharp rhythms and direct diction. The piece is based on and is inspired by the empowerment of music on the Haitian people who were enslaved. As for Art, in the words of the head of Art IASAS for ISM, Ms. Tara Barton, art cannot be adjudicated, yet without a doubt ISM always stands first. As ISM holds such a strong presence in the festival, CULCON 2011 will surely be an event that will be remembered for years to come. The IASAS Music Participants

Courtesy of Yewon Lee


By Anthony Gokianluy, Grade 12 Muses in Motion: The HS World Music Finale Concert


The ISM Symphonic Band

t has now come to this moment, the crme de la crme of all concerts, the melodic joining of strings, woodwinds and brass its the HS Grande Finale Concert! Ties were tied, white shirts donned, and black pants put on; the practice rooms were abuzz with excitement and boisterous laughter in anticipation for the concert which was drawing closer and closer. The big event on ISMs musical calendar finally arrived. No time to rest, no sore throats allowed, the show must go on. All performances pushed through stunningly, from the first note until the final echoes. All the bands took their own unique interpretations of the concert theme World Music. The first performance group, the Orchestra, set the tone of the concert showcasing the timeless beauty of the classics from composers such as Antonin Dvorak. The Concert band played a diverse medley of traditional pieces from a solemn Irish Song to a lively Jamaican folk song. Concert Choir exhibited great tonal quality with their folk songs as well, especially with the South African song Singabahambayo and the Shoshone Love Song. The Symphonic bands songs, especially the historic Midway March by John Williams, were very skillfully and gracefully played. Show Choir, ISMs top performance ensemble vocal group, captivated the audience with their melodic voices, singing

Basque Lullaby and ending with the fastpaced Twa Tanbou (an IASAS Vocals piece). To cap the night, the Jazz band put on a show with the songs Morocco and Frontier, using some unconventional instruments such as gongs to create the mood. It was evident from the enthusiasm of the Concert band and Orchestra to the explosiveness of Symphonic band and Show Choir that the Fine Arts program of ISM is as efficacious as ever, reaching higher octaves each time and setting the bar for next years stream of concerts. That being said, kudos to Mr. Tom Nazareno and Ms. Leah Gander, the band directors, and Mr. Guillaume Odendaal, the strings director, for mentoring and guiding the students in preparation for this wonderful concert! Special thanks as well to Mr. Dougy French, Ms. Malou Talens and the rest of the Fine and

Performing Arts department who have made this year-end concert so special. However, this Finale concert, a sad occasion for many of the departing Seniors, was also the last for Mr. John Mulhall, the conductor of the HS Show Choir and various other HS and MS performances and classes. As a final valedictory, Mr. Mulhall stated that he loves different kinds of music [World Music] was the best kind of theme for my last Finale concert. He went on to say that it was an honor to work with such amazing young performers. The 2011 High School Finale concert was a success and, as one of the audience attendees even exclaimed, was an opportunity to see different nationalities speak the universal language of song. The ISM Jazz Band

The ISM Show Choir

Pictures courtesy of Anthony Gokianluy



Gary Jerome: The Admissions

By Antonio Roxas, Grade 8

he first two things I noticed about Mr. Jerome were his height (at 6 feet and 3 inches, this is clearly one of his defining features) and his brimming ear-toear grin. He had a smile that suggested confidence and experience; it told me that he knew exactly what he was doing. Mr. Jerome radiated certain

charisma, and from the start, I instantly liked him. I interviewed Mr. Jerome to find out about him and his job here at ISM. Immediately at the start of the interview, I felt very comfortable with him and found him to be personable character, very easy to get along with. Mr. Gary Jerome can be seen around the school campus on almost any given day. But what does he do here? He isnt just your average teacher or a sports coach. He isnt the Superintendent or the Principal. Mr. Jerome is the Director of Admissions of ISM, and while it may not sound like the flashiest position, Mr. Jerome has one of the most crucial and necessary jobs in the school. If it werent for him, ISM wouldnt be rumbling with students, it wouldnt be the school it is known as. Students are at the core of Mr. Jeromes job. He is the person who takes care of admitting students into the ISM community. He does the paperwork for every new student and then passes that on to guidance counselors, who arrange for interviews. He is the first step in enrollment and was probably the one who handled all of our paperwork. While this may seem as something quite boring or redundant, Mr. Jerome does his job with zest and enthusiasm. He arrives at school a little before six in the morning and opens up his office. He will then spend most of the morning answering emails from inquisitive parents asking about free spaces for enrollment in the ISM community, as well as to set appointments to meet with him. Hell then typically spend the afternoon meeting new families and touring the prospective students around the school. He was the person that toured my family and me around the school, and he did it with such energy that I remember thinking to myself: I hope all the teachers in this school are like him. That is just one of the things that Mr. Jerome loves about his job - the families and people he meets. His only regret is that he cant spend so much time with these new students because there is always a new family coming in and wanting to enroll their kids in ISM that he has to attend to. This routine is something he has been doing for twentytwo years now, and he loves every aspect of it. When I asked him what it was that kept him at ISM for so long, he answered: I love the wonderful families, the kids and the faculty. He also remarked that the atmosphere while working in ISM is great, and that everyone is so unique.1 So, for him to say these things about ISM are definitely good signs that our school is truly special. He also stated that: One thing that makes ISM extremely special is the connection that students build here. He means that friends made at ISM are friends for life. According to him, in the other schools he has been in, whenever someone leaves the school or when high school students are separated as they go to their respective universities, their old friends are completely forgotten about. But this does not happen in ISM. The connection between students is so Pictures of Mr. Jerome courtesy of Angel Feliciano

His basis for comparison is the four other international schools he has worked at.


strong that friendships and relationships between students still last even when separated. Being with International School Manila from the start, he has seen a lot of big and important changes for the school. The biggest change, of course, was the improvement of facilities as well as the move from the Bel-Air campus in Kalayaan to the spectacular location we are in right now. He remarked: Now, we have three gyms, three libraries and three magnificent fields. This is obviously a big difference from what it was like at the Bel-Air campus. Mr. Jerome also said that from the start, ISM has always been a great school - the best in the Philippines. According to him, what makes the school such a great place is that: The kids work hard and they play hard. He obviously means that ISM students are intelligent and sharp and that they know how to work hard, but they also balance this with their wonderful personalities and their knowing the importance of having a good time. Mr. Jerome is from Iowa in the Midwest of the United States. He moved to the Philippines from Luxembourg, where he previously worked, because of the fantastic job offer to work at ISM. From then on, the thought of leaving has never crossed his mind. He is married to a Filipina and absolutely he loves it here. He especially loves the tropical weather because, inevitably, coming from Iowa, he got quite sick of shoveling the thick, sludgy, icy, snow. He also finds the Filipino culture fascinating and something he is proud to experience. In the 22 years he has lived in the Philippines, hes been all over the country. He has traveled to Vigan in the north, Palawan, and of course Boracay. He also spends a lot of his weekends in Pampanga. Mr. Jerome plans on staying in the Philippines for as long as he can foresee but sadly all things must end. This is true with Mr. Jeromes stint in ISM as well. He will retire at the end of this year and pass on his position, but we know that Mr. Jerome will have ISMs best interests at heart. We can rest assured that the next Admissions Director will be able to learn from all his experience. ISM is one of those places you will never forget, and Mr. Jerome is one of the many people that make it that way. His effort and his job make him a crucial and important part of ISM. Without him, International School Manila would not be what it is today, and we would not be able to forge the wonderful relationships that we have. Thank you Mr. Jerome, for everything you have done and for all your dedicated years to our school!

Swim Team Interview


By Pedro Roxas, Grade 10

Courtesy of Hazel Benipayo

Freshman: Sam Crowe

What do you want to achieve?
I want to achieve more IASAS qualifying times so I can make IASAS.

What experiences do you look forward to?

Bonding with new swimmers and traveling with the team.

What is something you enjoyed this year?

Getting to know the upperclassmen on the team and going to Bangkok for PreIASAS.

Senior: Sam Drury

How long have you been playing for?
I have been swimming since I was a Freshman.

What do you love most about this sport?

I love the fact that I can be as naked as possible and still be considered an athlete.

What awards have you won?

I placed 2nd in the 400IM (Individual Medley) and 6th in the 800 freestyle at IASAS.

What was your favorite part of this season?

My favorite part is bonding with the team...the usual really.

What is your best memory?

My best memory is when I did a cannon ball off the blocks during IASAS for one of my final events.


Grade 4 MS Tour and Talk


By Mika Limcaoco, Grade 10

least a few of the faculty members of the Middle School should at the least give the soon-to-be Middle School student a more comforting feeling. The facilities in the Middle School are much more elaborate than that of the Elementary School. For example, a new Media Center is introduced, housing several more computers to work from and thousands of more books. A level under the Media Center would be the much awaited canteen. Students now have the opportunity to choose from several restaurants and many more nutritional options. Knowing at least a couple of the new Middle School locations on campus is extremely helpful, whether it be for the feeling of familiarity for the student, or the convenience of not having to peek at the schedule while shuffling through the halls. When asked about the tour and talk, Mr. Marc St. Laurent stated The MS Tour and Talk is one of the efforts we make to help the grade four students make the transition to the Middle School. Our goal is to help eliminate the fear of the unknown. We hope that when students arrive on the first day in August, they have some familiarity with the Middle School. Clearly, familiarity is key to the success of the transitioning student.

verybody has their own little anxieties that come with the thought of change, our individual fears and expectations may cause us to wonder what will happen next. For the graduating Seniors, it may be the terrifyingly exciting move to the new grounds of the university world. For the Sophomores, it may be the forthcoming IB Program, which is one of the most academically challenging programs in the world. For the Eighth Grade, it may be the transition to the alien world of High School, dark and scary as it seems. But let us not forget the stepping-stone of all major academic transitions: the transition from Elementary School to Middle School. The transition from the Elementary School to Middle School is an inevitable one. With a new school bracket comes the added external pressures of official graded assessments as well as more intensively studied subjectsa big difference from the closely-knit nurturing classrooms of the Elementary School. It indeed is a huge leap academically for the fourth grade student. Steel grey lockers line the long corridors, giving leeway exclusively to the various numbered

classrooms. To the unknowing eyes of an Elementary student, its a wonder that anyone can get around. This is where the MS Tour and Talks come in. The two Middle School guidance councilors, Mr. Marc St. Laurent and Ms. Diana Van Der Merwe, arrange a brief tour and talk to be held with the upcoming Middle School batch to occur on May 16 to 20. Sadly, with such a limited amount of time, not everything can be asked or understood by the many curious students. Sheila Ramos, a parent of a new Middle School student commented As children transition from Elementary to Middle School, they learn independence and start to make decisions on their own. These are both critical skills that any student must learn in the process of growing up. The change is one that promotes responsibility as it is the first time that students must keep aware of the clock to be sure to make their next class. They must also keep organized for each of the requirements from every class, bringing different books and supplies depending on their teachers. During these talks, groups of grade four students are brought around the Middle School in batches in a tourlike fashion. Major figures are introduced, such as some of the teachers, assistants, and guidance councilors. Knowing at


ISSBA - Politics at ISM


By Julia Saubier, Grade 11 and Andie Ayala, Grade 9

enerally, the most coveted leadership positions in any school include Presidency or memberships in student councils. Amidst ISMs hierarchy of activities, student councils ultimately rest at the top of the ladder. International School Student Body Association (ISSBA,) the High Schools executive council, is at the forefront of any student council associations at ISM. In the Middle School however, a different system of leadership is established, a system that has, in due course, led to a great measure of success as well. Both councils have proven to be the heart and driving force of ISMs main activities.

ects despite this similarity in the councils fundamental purpose. ISSBA Public Relations Officer (PRO), Jonathan Moran, a Junior, says, ISSBA is the facilitator of communication between everyone in High School, including the student body, the administration, and the student governments. Treasurer and Senior, Ju Sung Kim, adds, as the main bridge between the student body and the administration, ISSBAs inexistence could engender noticeable lack of communication and inconvenience. As the voice of the student body, ISSBA ensures effective communication and attempts to ameliorate school conditions by meeting with the administration and the student leaders several times a month, and with Superintendent Mr. David Toze, quarterly. Senior Zane Kansil adds, ISSBA also plays an important role in making sure other clubs and councils are able to communicate and co-operate in an efficient manner. Besides ensuring effective communication, ISSBA organizes High School-wide events, including of Battle of the Bearcats But who exactly is in each respective council? and Wednesday assemblies, to name a few. Though ISSBA consists of a President, Vice-President, According to the members of the Middle School council, the Secretary, Treasurer and Public Relations Officer, membership in the prestigious council involves collaboration primary purpose of the council is to organize Middle School events and team-work, transcending pre-set titles. Currently, the and to ultimately keep MS students content. The success of the councouncil consists of two Seniors and three Juniors. In con- cil-organized Middle School party was immense due to the largely trast, each year the Middle School council is made up of democratically-structured council. Seventh grader Aparna recalls: I two Grade Level Representatives voted by each grade thought up the idea of having an arcade in the last MS Party, but the level and four other members (elected by the entire Middle rest of the council expanded on that and thought of the games and School) as the Executive Council. With a total of twelve everything. The MS Party that received a positive response from the students and three teachers as members, the rest of the councils collaboration was held last February 4. With the help of paid council contributes just as much as the executives, follow- arcade games such as Pin the Heart on Cupid and Beanbag Toss, ing a structure that is based solely on the participation and the council was able to raise 18, 000 pesos in profit. Aside from Middle agreement of the whole group. It must be greatly empha- School parties, the council also arranges other regular activities such sized that such titles do not only promise prestige, but also as spirit week, pep rallies and courtyard events. They also have the opthe work for those bearing such responsibilities entails hard tion to get involved with the International Schools Theatre Association (ISTA), Filipinana and International Family Fun Day. work, collaboration, and communication. Both councils agree that there are considerable differences Although each council is student-elected and exist to benefit the student body, both have very different proj- between each organization. Besides the duties of each respective council, the scale and magnitude of responsibility and seriousness is much larger in ISSBA in comparison to the Middle School council. Laura, a former member the Middle School council and current ISSBA council Secretary states, High School councils are more independent and rely less on supervision by advisors. MS council pertained to a Middle School that was more dependent on schedules, pre-set curriculums, and teachers, and didnt require as much time or dedication. However, they should be praised just the same! Having one of the most demanding jobs in high school in terms of the duration and frequency of meetings, members of ISSBA are extremely committed. Both councils are not simply in charge of managing and catering to a specific group of people they represent and work for four grade levels worth of individuals. Working for the benefit of such a large group of students is in no way, shape or form simple. The Middle School council acknowledges that the biggest challenge of a council member is creating new and interesting ideas that will satisfy the entirety of the Middle School populace. However, since the workload in High School increases, members of ISSBA struggle with creating the perfect balance between academics and extra-curricular activities, especially since all members are at the pinnacle of their High School careers. Nonetheless, the acceptance of a title of great responsibility reminds us that ISSBA is a priority; we were elected by the students and must deliver what we promised in our speeches or during campaign period.

ISSBA 2010-2011 - Back row from left to right: Jonathan Moran (PRO), Zane Kansil (President), Ju Sung Kim (Treasurer); Front row from left to right: Laura Lehmann (Secretary), Julia Saubier (Vice-President) Courtesy of Richelle Tsai


Despite the councils difficult tasks, it is equally fulfilling. Zane says that realizing your ability to bring out the best in others and the desire to make changes that allow that to be possible is an extremely satisfying outcome of working in student council. Vice President and Junior Julia Saubier states, seeing small, seemingly unequivocal ideas become large-scale, positive, school-wide changes is extremely fulfilling. Ultimately, serving those who validated our candidacy justifies all our hard work and investment. Middle School Student Council members also benefit from helping others, as Sixth Grader Gabbie says, I was student representative for my class last year and it was fun because we got to pack goody bags for the Typhoon Ondoy victims. Feeling satisfaction is not the only benefit of membership in a Student Council. Members also gain valuable skills needed to succeed in life. The Middle School Council stated that via the council work, they learned about time management, cooperation, planning, and thinking. ISSBA Treasurer Ju Sung Kim highlights the importance of responsibility, punctuality and determination. Ultimately, council members learn how to cooperate and communicate effectively with others in order to bring small ideas to life. Members also learn about the importance of task delegation and responsibility, as sometimes, the failure to complete a task affects not solely one person but the entire student body. The council members were posed with the question what constitutes a good leader? Seventh Grader Hannah says, a good leader is somebody who can empathize with the people they are in charge of. Other members of the council agreed that those who can manage a group and those who are good role models are essentially good leaders. Julia says, as members of the executive student body, we are exemplary students and therefore act as role models who value and encompass the schools established principles: Integrity, Service and Merit. We hold a high degree of quality in our social and academic ventures. As a council member, you have to maintain a certain image as you are representing the student body at large. All good leaders must lead by example. Ju Sung says, a good leader would be someone who can see ahead of others, is not afraid to make mistakes, and

Courtesy of MS Student Council 2010 - 2011

AJ Tomas (Gr. 6), Krishna Goswami (Gr. 7), Cristian Saguil (Executive council, Gr. 8), Jennifer Diaz (Advisor), Lucas Ramos, Michael Limmena (Executive council), Dong Yun Lee (Gr. 7), Aparna Mohan (Executive council, Gr. 7), Cheryl Thompson (Advisor), Hannah Hua (Gr.7) In front: Noah Ramos, Gabie Cruz (Gr. 5), Kayla Uytengsu (Gr. 5). Missing: Carmel Lim (Advisor)

is willing to learn from the mistakes he or she makes. Laura also adds that a good leader is willing, determined, responsible, organized, someone who is also a follower, and someone who is open to listen to other ideas. The council members are aware of what constitutes a leader because of experience with leadership. Moreover, their work as council members is helping them build leadership qualities. It is apparent that under the guidance of their advisors, both the Middle and High School Councils have been implementing positive, school-wide changes, and ultimately, their work does not go unnoticed. These leaders encompass the

school-wide goals of Integrity, Service and Merit, acting as an example to the students whom they continually strive to serve. The attitudes and traits that constitute good leaders have been exhibited in these model students, and it must be further acknowledged that they themselves have become the embodiment of great leaders. With their exposure and experience with leadership, these current leaders of ISM will undoubtedly move on to bigger and better things. Hopefully, they will channel their experiences here and become the future leaders of the world.

ISSBA 2011-2012; From left to right: Akshar Bonu (PRO), Daniel Um (Treasurer), Esther Park (Secretary), Laura Lehmann (Vice-President), Jonathan Moran (President)

Courtesy of ISSBA


IDeA Debate: Power. Color. Words.


By Sera Yun, Grade 10

hispers from one ear to another and smooth scribbling on blank sheets of paper permeated the silence in the room as anxious debaters stole quick looks from one another, slowly filled up the room with a growing intensity. With the sounds of grave footsteps approaching nearer and the final calling out of time!, these scribbles and whispers came to an abrupt stop and one by one the debaters grabbed their seats, carefully scanning their opposition. This was one of the typical scenes at the IDeA 2 (Interscholastic Debaters Association of the Philippines) tournament that took place on February 19-20, 2011 at Miriam College. ISM sent two debate teams comprised of ISM A (Sera Yun and Moonie Sohn) and ISM B (Leandro Leviste and Michi Ferreol) for IDeA 2, which was a continuation of IDeA Lite held on October 1-2, 2010. The series of IDeA tournaments is an opportunity for debaters from an array of schools to give strength to their voices and opinions. Sighs of excitement, anxiety, and enthusiasm pervaded the atmosphere every time the large white screen of the lecture hall revealed the motion of the debate, many of which revolved around various creative themes such as homosexuality, mass media, and human rights. The moment the motion of the debate

and room numbers were scribbled down, the debate teams began discussing their ideas on the way to their assigned rooms, already fuelling and heating up the air for another exciting round. Debate at IDeA is never silent; shouts of Here, Here!, Shame!, and the sound of dragging chair legs for Points of Information (where delegates stand up and question the points of the speaker) can be heard in every room. With the ending of the last speech, all the debaters rushed out of the room; the grimaces that they had carried throughout the debate, instantly turned into smiles as they shook hands with each other. The tension loosened up right after the debate rounds. The bonding that occurs amongst the debaters reflects their same passion and fascination towards the thrill of debate and ardent desire to resolve social issues. This is inevitably one of the most meaningful and worthwhile moments a debater can experience at the IDeA competitions. Debate at IDeA is more than just giving a seven-minute speech or frantically adding up the scores just to make sure that youve made it to the break, said Moonie Sohn, a participant of the IDeA 2 tournament from ISM Team A; Its about giving value and height to your voice and most importantly, having fun! IDeA 2 challenged the stereotype that debate is boring and futile. The interesting themes and controversies that were discussed and the new relationships that were formed at this competition definitely proved this prejudice wrong. This event

was undeniably an important experience where the participants were once again reminded of the power of the youth and the strength of their voices. Despite being a participant of IDeA for only one year, the International School Manila has recently been acknowledged as an official member of this prestigious association where it will assume its responsibilities as a part of the Philippine IDeA Council, a student-run organization, next year. With this prestige, ISM was allowed to send four more debate teams for the most recent tournament, IDeA 3, which took place on March 19-20, 2011 at the Ateneo High School. These teams were ISM A (Akshar Bonu and Blanca Villanueva), ISM B (Leandro Leviste and Michi Ferreol), ISM C (Gaea Morales and Philippe Lior-Liechtenstein), and ISM D (Anthony Gokianluy and Sera Yun). From a relatively unrecognized school with two unofficial teams in the beginning of the year, ISM has wrapped up the IDeA season by winning a championship at the IDeA Lite and making the quarterfinals at IDeA 2. The ISM Forensics Club and its members now stand as an official part of IDeA. The dominance of the ISM debate teams does not cease here, however. In the coming years, our debaters will once again reunite to give color and power to their words and, of course, to their IDeAs.

Courtesy of Anthony Gokianluy



VICKY HERRERA: From A Students Eyes

By Mahek Tulsiani, Grade 11

he renowned Vicky Herrera has graced the International School Manila for three decades. Weve all heard about her, whether weve had any real interaction with her or not. Weve heard about her compassion, her warmth, and her genuine interest in the students of ISM. Weve seen the photos decorating the wall outside her office all sent to Vicky from former ISM students as a token of gratitude and appreciation. Vickys office is a testament to how awesome she is. The photographs on her wall that have covered the entire guidance office are proof of the overflowing love her students have for her, says Sophomore Mariella Salazar. It embodies who she is warm, welcoming, and positive. Simply put, Vicky is a legend. She is one of the people who has left a lasting impact on ISM, its students, and its faculty. When I learned that Vicky Herrera was going to be my Guidance Counselor at the end of my Freshman year, I remember an older friend gushing, Youre so lucky. Vickys amazing. As a lowly Freshman, I hadnt really heard that much about the different Guidance Counselors, although I had a general idea about who they were and what they were like. However, it wasnt until my first meeting with Vicky at the beginning of my Sophomore year that I learned exactly why she was so amazing. I remember feeling very curious, to say the least, as I waited outside her room for her to finish talking to another student. I looked at the photos on her door, wondering how one person could have had such a huge effect on so many

Pictures Courtesy of Angel Feliciano people. Id heard nothing but great things about Vicky, but I had never really understood these amazing qualities until that moment. I remember everything about my first meeting with Vicky. I remember how she made me feel instantly at ease, and how she managed to boost my confidence about the path I was on. She also pointed out things that I needed to do in order to get to where I wanted to go. Vicky manages to create a bond with each student, developing a connection resembling a friendship rather than a student-teacher relationship. Wow, I thought, as I left the guidance room. So thats what they mean. Vicky isnt the type of Guidance Counselor, or the type of person, in fact, to let her interaction with her students start and end at the Guidance room door. Shes the kind of person who says hi to your mom when she passes her in the hallway; the kind of person who wishes you well on your birthday. Shes the kind of person who has her desk stacked with Christmas presents the day before the December break, and the kind of person who sends individual, handwritten thank you notes to everyone who gave her a gift before school starts again. With all of this, its not hard to see why Vicky has had such a profound effect on ISM for the decades she has been at the school. She was here when we changed our mascot from the Indian to the Bearcats; she was here when we didnt have a uniform; and she was here when we made the move from the old campus to the new campus. Shes watched countless students graduate, go to college, and come back to visit her during their breaks, and shes helped them through every step of the way. As the resident mother figure, she nurtures us all during some of the most trying times, encouraging us to reach for our dreams, whatever they may be. At the same time, though, its kind of hard to describe Vicky. Shes the kind of person you have to meet to understand exactly why shes so legendary. I cant. Its too much pressure, says Senior Gabriela Pascuzzi, when asked to


describe Vicky. I feel like my description of her wouldnt even do her justice. You can never go wrong by asking Vicky for advice, adds Chris Ong. She knows everything. Whenever Im confused about something and I ask Vicky for advice, I always think, why didnt I think of that before? Her advice is simple but perfect. Although her knowledge of college-related matters is enough to grant her the title of a college oracle, Vickys advice and knowledge also extends to real life. Any conversation with Vicky inevitably leads to gaining a few pearls of genuine, well-earned wisdom. Essentially, Vicky is an ISM tradition in herself. There is a reason she was chosen to speak as the voice of the teachers during the recent assembly against cyber bullying. Teachers knew that she was the perfect person to deliver the message against bullying; the student body respects her word and have heard of her influence on others. No one touches lives quite like Vicky can, and I know that everyone who meets her is glad to have had her in their life. Her years of experience have given her the authority on the ISM way of living, the ISM culture. She has seen our parents, our siblings and cousins pass through these halls, she has seen and battled through the tough times our

school has experienced; all of which allows her to enhance the quality of our schooling. And although Vicky will leave to retire this year, her legacy will still remain at the heart of ISM.


Honoring Vicky Sycip Herrera 68:

Teacher, Guidance Counselor, Mentor, Friend

icky has touched the lives of so many people,

and however hard we try, words cannot do justice to how much she has impacted the lives of past and present members of the community, writes Alex Eduque 07. Vickys office has been a sanctuary for many of us: students, parents, colleagues. Her advice and candor has encouraged, motivated and kept most of us on the right path, even when we felt like giving up. She has been a mother figure, a counselor, a teacher, a co-worker, even a match-maker; but more importantly, Vicky has been a friend to each of us. This school year, 2010-2011, marks Vickys final year in her current position as High School guidance counselor she will be retiring in June. The bitter-sweet emotions that many of our students, parents, faculty and alumni feel can be heard in the mountain of messages the school has received in recognition of her service. Vickys relationship with our school began as a Grade 2 student in Ms. Millers class on the Donada campus (of the American School as it was then known) in 1957. Graduating in 1968, Vicky went on to study at the University of the Philippines. In 1973, Vicky would return to school but this time as an English Literature teacher. It wasnt until 1975, after the birth of her twin daughters that Vicky returned from maternity leave to assume her guidance counseling position: a position she has held for the past 38 years. One alumnus remarked, Vicky has been, the perfect guidance counselor, friend and mentor. She treated each of us with such personal attention. I am the person I am today in great part due to Vickys love and caring attention, her strength and her continued friendship. The list of dedications we have received all reiterate the same feelings. The IS Manila community has been truly distinguished by having Vicky as part of our faculty. In commemoration of her ser-

vice to our community, we have established the Vicky Sycip Herrera Scholarship fund in her honor. Many of you will know of this program, which seeks to fund local national students of exceptional ability but whose parents lack the financial capacity to fund an education at IS Manila. Presently, the school supports four Scholars in each Grade from 8 to 12. Vickys Scholar would be the fifth such. These students all pass through an elaborate selection process involving standardized assessment tests, essays and psychological evaluations as well as a comprehensive means test to ascertain the familys financial circumstances. Since 1967, our Filipino Scholarship Program has changed the lives of over 150 students and often the lives of their families as well. The list of accomplishments and achievements of these Scholars is remarkable. And although the Scholars have gained immeasurably from an ISM education, it is worth noting that they have the given much back to the School. Listen to Vickys own assessment of the value that they have added: I was aware of the Filipino Scholarship Program when it started way back in 1961; this was when the first batch of Scholars started in what was then called Junior High (Grade 7). They graduated in 1967, and the second batch of scholars was in my class of 1968. Since then, Ive had the honor of getting to know just about every Filipino Scholar in 44 graduating classes and oh, how theyve raised the bar at ISM not just in the classroom but in extra-curricular activities as well! The Scholars have played a huge role in making our School the success it is today. What better way could there be of recognizing Vickys unique contribution to IS Manila than to help expand our Scholarship program in her name! We ask each of you to make a pledge to this cause such that we can establish an endowment fund large enough to provide for the continuing tuition and support of an additional, truly deserving Filipino Scholar. Of course we recognize that, in making this appeal, we shall receive donations both small and large. We plan to recognize those who make substan-

tial contributions on a special board of honor located prominently in the school. Please think carefully about this giving opportunity. Not only will your generosity open up a life-changing pathway to an international school education and beyond, it will also help keep Vickys legacy alive for future generations of students. For your convenience, you may donate on-line at: or if you prefer cash or check donations, please visit the Cashiers Office. I would be happy to discuss the details of the program should you need more information. Sincerely, Stephanie H. Hagedorn Director of Community Relations International School Manila (632) 840-8662

by Niccolo Jose, Class of 2005



Taking the Leap

By Samantha Ramsey, Grade 11

trips known as Classroom Without Walls (CWW). Many teachers from each class section attended the assembly to talk to the prospective Middle School students about their class options as well. As this group of Fourth Graders graduates into Middle School, Mr. Simon Gilespie shares a few words of wisdom, reminding all students to never forget who they are, and the lessons they have learned as young children.


he transition into Middle School is a step that is undoubtedly filled with mixed emotions of fear, nervousness and, most of all, excitement. For the current Fourth Grade students, entering Middle School is a big leap. As Fourth Grader Aoi Hoshi states, going on to Middle School makes me feel like I have suddenly grown up. However, this is also a time of change and growth into the adolescent years, according to Mr. Simon Gillespie, next years Middle School Principal. On the second of February, a

transition assembly for the upcoming Fifth Grade students was held. As opposed to the compulsory classes that the Elementary School provides, Middle School offers a more flexible curriculum. With new decisions to be made, students are offered a wide range of new opportunities. However, with such freedom, confusion and uncertainty in class choices is inevitable. It might be kind of challenging. I am scared but I am also excited, says Fourth Grader Marco Ayala. Thus, the informative transition assembly was held with the aim to guide the students through their journey into their new grade. The current fourth graders were exposed to the range of classes as well as other Middle School activities such as the whole grade field


IB Film Festival 2011

ver since ISM has started teaching IB Film, the Film Festival at the end of the school year has showcased the talent of Film students in High School, and celebrates the successes of these students. The films demonstrate the immense range of skills found in the growing community of Film students, and also highlights interesting topics that the student body associates with. The Film Festival is not only an opportunity to see the final cuts of the IB2 films, but also exhibits exceptional films from the Intro, Explore, and IB1 classes. This year however, there have been eight IB2 films produced which will take up the whole show. Of the eight films, two of them are Standard Level films, taking up about five minutes each, while the other six are Higher Level, which have a length of about seven minutes each. The films tackle subjects ranging from Korean society to teen relationships, to school rebellionall topics that are commonly discussed in the hallways between students. The exhibition of such themes only makes the festival even more intriguing. Some of the titles include: Alex and Sophie, Destiny, Rainboys, and Dystopia. IB film students have been working hard on their production since last year to perfect their pieces and as a result, this years Film Festival, coming up in April 15th, will definitely be one to watch!

By Katie Thompson, Grade 12

Poster by Bernice Halili


The Awesome Class of 2011!!

The International School Manila (ISM) confirmed its reputation as one of the best international schools in the world with graduating Seniors gaining admission to a string of outstanding universities, both locally and abroad. One of the ISM Filipino Scholars selected and supported since Grade 8 by ISM because of academic potential and financial need - was offered a full scholarship to attend Harvard University. Two other ISM Seniors were also offered places at Harvard. ISMs college preparatory curriculum has been the distinguishing factor for students being offered both full and partial scholarships to top-notch universities around the world. The rigorous International Baccalaureate (IB) program combined with top-quality instruction and first class facilities and resources to support ISMs holistic education have been key to this outstanding performance. High School Guidance counselor Curt Nichols explains, Universities have come to recognize ISM graduates as intellectual, spirited, active and passionate, which routinely distinguishes our students from one-dimensional academic applicants. Other ISM Seniors have been offered places to MIT, Yale, Stanford, Princeton, University of Pennsylvania, Brown, Bryn Mawr, Georgetown, Carnegie Mellon and Duke, while those interested in Canada or the UK have offers from McGill, University of Toronto, University of Oxford, London School of Economics, Imperial College London, St Andrews and Durham.


from the ISM Guidance Department

ISM has a long tradition of sending students to the best universities in the world. Our admissions record is truly remarkable. Most of our students have been admitted to their first or second choice university options, Nichols adds. The Guidance department at ISM works extremely hard to ensure graduates are looking at their best-fit universities but also urge students to add reach options to their list of choices. High School Principal William Brown mentions, What differentiates this Class is that majority of our students made it in to the universities on their wish lists. They have surpassed their own expectations. For a complete listing of College Acceptances, please visit under News & Calendar

College Acceptances
College # of people accepted 2 1 1 1 2 1 19 2 2 3 1 1 7 1 3 18 1 1 3 1 2 1 1 1 2 1 1 Carnegie Mellon University (Carnegie Institute of Technology) Chapman University Christopher Newport University City University Claremont McKenna College Clark University Cleveland Institute of Art Colby College Colgate University College of the Holy Cross College of William and Mary Columbia University (Columbia College) Connecticut College Cornell University Dartmouth College De Anza College De La Salle University Manila Dominican University of California Duke University (Trinity College of Arts & Science) Durham University Eckerd College Ecole Htelire de Lausanne Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University - FL Emerson College Emmanuel College Eugene Lang College The New School for Liberal Arts 4 1 1 1 2 2 1 1 2 2 2 1 1 4 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 2 2 1 Fairfield University Fisher College Florida State University Fordham University Franklin and Marshall College George Mason University Georgetown University (Georgetown College) Georgia Institute of Technology Georgia Institute of Technology Glasgow Caledonian University Glion Institute of Higher Education Goldsmiths College, University of London Hamilton College - NY Hampshire College Harvard University Harvey Mudd College Haverford College Hiram College IE University Imperial College of Science, Technology, and Medicine Indiana University at Bloomington Iona College Jacksonville University James Madison University Johns Hopkins University Johnson & Wales University Juniata College Kings College London 1 1 1 13 2 1 2 1 2 1 1 2 1 1 3 1 1 1 2 2 1 1 1 2 1 1 1 1 Academy of Art University Allegheny College American University American University of Rome Amherst College Amsterdam University College Ateneo de Manila University Babson College Bard College Barnard College Barry University Bath Spa University College Bentley University Binghamton University (School of Management) Boston College Boston University Brandeis University Brock University Brown University Bryant University Bryn Mawr College California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo California State University, East Bay California State University, Sacramento Cardiff University Carleton College Carnegie Mellon University


Lakehead University Lancaster University Lehigh University Lewis & Clark College London School of Economics Longwood University Loyola Marymount University Loyola University Chicago Lynn University Manhattanville College Massachusetts Institute of Technology McGill University Menlo College Michigan State University Middlebury College Middlesex University Mount Holyoke College New York University Nipissing University Northeastern University Northwestern University (Arts & Sciences) Nottingham Trent University Occidental College Old Dominion University Pace University, New York City Parsons The New School for Design Pennsylvania State University, Berks College Pennsylvania State University, University Park Pratt Institute Princeton University Purdue University Queen Mary, University of London Queens University Quest University Canada Radford University Rhode Island School of Design Rice University (School of Architecture) Rider University Ringling College of Art and Design Ritsumeikan Asia Pacific University Rochester Institute of Technology (College of Engineering or Science) Saint Louis University (College of Engineering & Aviation) Saint Marys College of California Salve Regina University Santa Clara University Savannah College of Art and Design School of Pharmacy, University of London Seoul National University Sheffield Hallam University Smith College SSTH-Swiss School of Tourism

1 3 1 2 2 1 2 3 1 4 1 2 1 2 2 1 3 6 1 8 3 2 1 1 2 2 1 5 2 1 6 1 1 1 1 2 1 1 1 1 1

1 1 2 3 1 1 2 1 1 1

and Hospitality Stanford University Stony Brook University Syracuse University Temple University Texas Christian University The Chinese University of Hong Kong The Culinary Institute of America The George Washington University The Hong Kong University of Science & Technology The Ohio State University (College of Business) The University of Arizona The University of Iowa (College of Business) The University of Tampa Trinity College Tufts University University at Buffalo The State University of New York University College Dublin University College London University College Utrecht University of Abertay Dundee University of Alberta University of Bath University of Birmingham University of Bristol University of British Columbia University of British Columbia Okanagan (Irving K. Barber School of Arts and Sciences) University of California at Berkeley University of California at Davis University of California at Irvine University of California at Los Angeles University of California at Riverside University of California at San Diego University of California at Santa Barbara University of California at Santa Cruz University of Chicago University of Dundee University of East Anglia University of Edinburgh University of Exeter University of Hawaii at Hilo University of Illinois at Chicago University of Illinois at UrbanaChampaign University of Kent at Canterbury University of Leicester University of Maryland, Baltimore County University of Massachusetts, Amherst

3 2 5 1 1 1 1 2 2 1 1 1 1 3 3 1 1 6 1 1 2 1 1 1 12 1

9 9 4 6 1 3

University of Miami University of Michigan University of New South Wales University of Notre Dame University of Nottingham University of Oregon University of Oxford University of Pennsylvania University of Portsmouth University of Rochester University of San Diego University of San Francisco University of Santo Tomas University of South Florida, Tampa University of Southern California University of St. Andrews (Scotland) University of Stirling University of Sydney University of the Arts London University of the Philippines University of Toronto University of Victoria (Faculty of Science) University of Virginia University of Warwick University of Washington University of Western Ontario University of Wisconsin, Madison Virginia Commonwealth University Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University Waseda University Washington University in St. Louis (Arts and Sciences) Wesleyan University Western Michigan University (College of Aviation) Wheaton College MA Williams College Yale University York University Total Acceptances

1 2 1 3 2 2 2 3 1 3 3 6 1 1 4 1 2 1 1 9 9 3 4 3 6 1 1 1 1 1 1 10 1 1 1 3 1 480

7 1 3 1 1 3 1 1 1 6 2 1 1 1


Great Expectations
ay in and day out, students are constantly aiming to please people be it regarding academics, sports, their personal appearance, or their social life. In fact, its very similar to someone doing pull-ups in the gym: you have to reach for the bar, or better yet, go over it. This bar doesnt have to be made of metal, though. It doesnt have to be very high either. This bar could be regarding anything (i.e. number of friends, grades) and could be at any level (i.e. at least 5, straight As). What differs though from this bar and gym equipment is the fact that this bar can affect lives. Day in and day out, students are also constantly aiming to reach it. So who exactly creates this bar? Unfortunately, the answer is bleak; it could be anyone. It could be your mom, your coach, someone who backstabs you or even your little sister anyone, indeed. Its as if you have no control, right? But no. You do have control. In fact, you have a lot of it. For one, you can choose to ignore the bar until you eventually die. For another, you can choose to spend every minute of your life trying to reach it. In other words, this bar could affect you and the way you live. If your mom sets the bar to an A in every subject, and you take note of it, imagine how hard it would be from going from Cs to As. If your coach sets the bar to a mile run of 6 minutes, and you consider this a necessity, imagine how many hours of extra training you would have to do. If your group of friends set the bar to having the most expensive brand of shoes, and you value their advice greatly, imagine how much you would have to save to buy them. This bar can hurt us. This bar can have us head-overheels, obsessed with reaching it. It could change how we see people and how people see us. This bar could even be set so high that some would die still trying to reach it.


Who sets the bar for our performance in daily life? By Ellice Tordesillas, Grade 8

But this bar can also help us challenge ourselves into improving our abilities and skills. It can help us live healthier lifestyles. This bar can find us friends to treasure for life. Some bar this is. But the truth about who controls it? It is actually only us who can pull it down or pull it up. The rest are just opinions others more important than others. So what if your friend tells you to be someone youre not and you dont like it? You can always find another friend you would like to listen to. And so what if your teacher doesnt appreciate your project? You can always find another area in art you could be good at or just do better the next time. This bar is just one of the many machines in the gym. You could always avoid it. You could find other things to focus your life on. Take note, though that wont make it disappear. In fact, it will still be there but just changing higher to lower to just in between. Its your pick: from small to average and then to even greater expectations.


Technology in the World Around Us

By Nicole Calo, Grade 12


n this electrified environment, you are an urban human. From the moment you slam the alarm clock, to the minutes you spend staring at

the traffic lights on your way to school technology defines your morning. The instant the electronic school bell rings, to when the teacher switches on the projector and draws diagrams on the SmartBoard, to the bells ringing again technology defines school life.

As each of your individual fingers pound furiously on your laptop keyboard, as you edit films on high-powered Macintosh computers in the film lab, dance to music reverberating from the dance studios sound system, twang the strings on the electric guitar in band room, and watch your lunch money disappear into the cash register technology defines you as an ISM student. The second we ring the door bell, take out a cold lasagna from the refrigerator, press the buttons on the mi-

crowave, turn on the television, turn up the radio, play video games, surf the internet, visit Facebook, turn up the sound system in the bedroom and dance like no one is watching, turn off the lamp and tuck ourselves into our electronic warmers technology defines our evening. Technology defines our life, whether you think that matters or not. Articles written about the effects of technology on twenty first century people are a bit clich, but indeed a technologically influenced life is what we live today. It

is also the kind of lifestyle we will soon be passing on to our children, and unto the following generations. Technology certainly has its benefits, and its downfalls on society and the environment. We as urban humans must learn to master technology before it masters us. Advancements in technology are experiencing a steep exponential growth and are only expected to further increase and spread across more parts of the globe. To be aware of technologys influence is paramount to remaining sane in a world where gadgets do everything for us. The critical lesson of living in a world of technology is learning how to disconnect your own brain from its over-powering influence. For instance, if the commercial on the TV screen told you to go buy a burger from so-and-so fast food chain because itll make you happy, dont believe it. It will make you fat. Despite the divine transmission of a convincing message via radio tower, satellite, cable and plasma screen to your retina and eardrums dont let the sophistication of the journey it took those electronic signals to calibrate your brain send you automatically scooting to the telephone due to the sudden surge of internal chemicals triggering your appetite. That is virtually mind control. More than being skeptical of the triggering of brain signals by flashing lights and sounds that make you do things you never really had in mind to do independently, it is important to be wary of the manner in which the people with technological prowess are able to manipulate other people who are ignorant of technological politics. One example of the nasty technological societal designs are computer viruses. Who would make computer viruses? What people on earth are deranged enough to spend their intelligence and sweat in creating destructive software? Are they angry people that dont want to see humanity advance? No. Theyre just the people who make the anti-virus software. Only the mad geniuses able to make computer viruses in the first place are smart enough to create the antidote. In effect, they earn lots of money selling the cure to millions of computer users for the ingenious computer diseases they cleverly create. We must be aware that breathing in a city means that the influences of

technology reverberate through every fiber of our modern existence. The internet can control the way we perceive the world. Likewise, millions of children grow up on TV which forms their perception of society. In the tender years of behavioral development, the values and principles of human life absorbed by countless children across the globe are those broadcast by Hollywood cinema. These technological influences have subconsciously become the base knowledge source of society. Be radical in your knowledge of technology, and all its social and environmental implications. Global Warming for example could potentially be halted by our technological know-how. However, technology alone allows us to destroy the planet faster. Imagine if we were not blissfully ignorant of technology and the world system it has created if we werent merely blindly-following customers and employees. What if every single child knew how to make a radio or a car? Human empowerment would ensue. Teenagers could, in a few years time, invent flying machines that didnt have to depend on oil. There would be less traffic going to school too, because we would all be in the air. Fortunately starting today, in some schools in Japan, students in the grade school level are already taught how to build their own radios and robots. But how come we are still taught only how to land the jobs that

would generate the income used to buy appliances? Quite a lack of equity, I dare say. We should be taught how to invent, not merely how to purchase. Schools, I assert, should teach us how technology works as a standard of excellence in education. However, there is no part of the curriculum which I am currently digesting that teaches me how the beeping thing in the library works. I think that is a key part to me becoming a full-fledged, library-going academician. Nonetheless, ignorant as I am, I take the initiative to learn how these gadgets function rather than being initially mesmerized by the products of Macintosh on their debuts days, and then later sinking into oblivion to their effects on our lives. If I can get my hands on busted radios, I do so and at once take them apart and try to reassemble them, to learn how they work. I also like removing CPU covers and examining the inside parts of the computers brain. Its fun. If we are to live in a world that runs with technology, I believe it is important for all of us to know what goes on between the press of the button and the flashing of the screen, and between the flashing of the screen and the development of our personalities. If only a handful of people know this while millions remain mindlessly dependent on these technological systems then most of humanity is no different from machinery. We merely become urban robots.

Courtesy of Angel Feliciano


The Athletes Corner: Go, Sean Go!


By Kimberly Go, Grade 9

nown as one of the best and most experienced players of badminton in ISM, Sean Go is the Varsity Badminton Captain and is a skilled and steadfast athlete often looked up to by the underclassman. With a height of 61 and a sturdy physique, Sean encompasses the ability to sprint around the court from corner to corner and to return each shot with grace and finesse. His stamina, strategy, and strength is demonstrated when he lunges for deep net shots, fools his opponents with perplexing trick shots, and soars through the air, arms flexed, exploding in a sudden burst of energy that is surged into a crisp smash. Sean, says fellow 11th Grade Badminton Varsity team member, Jason Pesengco, is a badminton prodigy. He is excellent all around but his backhand smash is exceptionally stunning and [is] always a crowd pleaser. Not only does

he play phenomenally, but Sean also encourages teammates when morale is low and possesses sportsmanship quality, which not every athlete displays. He is a leader who supports and offers advice to younger members of the team, emphasizing the importance of strategy and perseverance. Jason adds that ISM is very fortunate to have him on [the] badminton team. Seans interest in badminton ignited when he was only in Grade 7 before then, badminton was only a recreational activity limited to backyard badminton. As continuous playing intensified his passion for the sport, he decided to play competitively and trained weekly under a 14-year Philippine champion. Sean is now a regular participant of national-level competitions, and has joined many events such as the Badminton Prada Cup, the Ming Ramos Youth Cup, Manila Polo Club Badminton Championships, and countless more. He

is a 4-year Varsity Badminton player, and has represented ISM in numerous IASAS tournaments. This year, ISM hosted IASAS Badminton with Sean leading the team, coming in at 4th place. Sean and the rest of the team bore unwavering spirit of determination and a fiery fervor that the ISM Bearcats are best known for.

Picture of Sean Go

Courtesy of Angel Feliciano

Farewell, THIMUN!
And it is now my duty to declare the 43rd session of The Hague Model United Nations closed. Guilluame Julian, the President of the General Assembly, pounded the podium with the gavel and officially closed the 43rd session of The Hague Model United Nations, and ended ISMs last year of participation in it, on January 28, 2011. The long THIMUN legacy of ISM has always stood solid and strong. As an annual participant, our school has once more proudly established our presence in this years THIMUN conference. Kimi Rodriguez, President of the Advisory Panel, reflects upon ISMs participation in THIMUN. Despite being amongst the 4000 students that attend from all over the world, we receive recognition for our hard work because of the skilled delegates we send. Having the opportunity to participate in something as big as THIMUN, to really dip our feet in a truly Pictures courtesy of Chris Ong


By Esther Park, Grade 10

global community and leave a mark, is a remarkable experience that I know Ill treasure forever. This year, not only did every single ISM delegate main-submit their resolutions, but two resolutions went to plenary, and seven of our delegates obtained officer positions truly an accomplished delegation. Shloka Sharan, delegate of the 4th General Assembly, says, perhaps it was the exceptional delegation, the increase in experience, or simply the fact that it was ISMs last year participating in the conference, but the outcome of this years THIMUN far exceeded expectations. Kimi additionally quips, and of course, a week in Europe with your friends can never go wrong! The ISM delegation enjoyed each others companies for one full week and created and strengthened friendships along the way. Every day, after hours of intense debating, our delegation enjoyed leisure time together huddled in one big group against the icy Hague wind, ate several


nights out at Sindbads, a long-kept THIMUN tradition, and pushed each other around inside hotel elevators during the so-called circle time. Every trip to the World Forum, Amsterdam, and Scheveningen was filled with laughter whenever Leandro Leviste (President of Human Rights Commission) piggybacked on Akshar Bonu (HRC1), or when Moonie Sohn (GA3) started rapping in the trams. Every moment shared ended up as pleasant memories that the delegation manage to keep, even as they come back to ISM and return to their respective groups. Michi Ferreol, Deputy - President of ECOSOC (Economic and Social Council) and ISMs Secretary General, expresses how this years trip was extremely special: not only was it ISMs last THIMUN trip, as well as my last time to go, but this years delegation was incredibly bonded and everyone just got along so well. I dont think Id ever had a delegation that was a real family like this THIMUN delegation was. For Shloka, THIMUN was like no other-- it was more than just a trip, more than just a conference; it was the epitome of my MUN career. As Alonzo Virata, delegate of the Disarmament Committee, resolutely says, you hear a lot of things about how great THIMUN is, and you almost think that theyre just exaggerating, that it really cant be THAT great. But it is. THIMUN, in itself, is unforgettable. As Daniel Tan, delegate of the HRC2 puts it, you can forget the debate, but you wont forget the smell of the freshly printed resolutions. You can complain about the missed work, but you cant deny that it was for the best week of your life. You can take away a plane ride to The Netherlands. But you cant take away THIMUN. Ultimately, Guilluames gavel could not bring to an end the precious memories, friendships, and experiences that ISMs THIMUN delegation has brought back with them to Manila. The legacy THIMUN has imparted upon ISM shall continue on.

Rugby Team Interview


By Pedro Roxas, Grade 10

Freshman: Yusuke Fukuyama

What do you want to achieve?
We want to medal and leave a mark on the field and in the history of ISM.

What experiences do you look forward to?

Its my first IASAS at home, so I want to experience how it feels to be cheered on by hundreds of people.

What is something you enjoyed this year?

I just loved my teammates so I enjoyed everything Ive done with them.

Boys rugby team pictures courtesy of Sarita Morris



MUNITY: A Pressing Opportunity

By Anthony Gokianluy, Grade 12

here was always something that intrigued me about the Press. Whenever I would look at a page of the New York Times (some pages of which were always delivered with our local newspaper), I would always wonder what kind of work went into creating it. In school, I was involved in the planning of the school community magazine, but that was only a part-time job, an extra-curricular activity. I was fascinated by the life of a journalist in the Press Room, as they call it. And just a couple of months ago, I was able to experience this. This year, from January 23 to 28, I was given the opportunity to become an Editor of the THIMUN (The Hague Model United Nations) Press Team which published a daily newspaper called MUNITY for the delegates of the conference. MUNITY joins together an international team of writers, editors, and photographers from different schools, each of whom have passion for their respective crafts. For the duration of the conference, all the members of the Press Team would pursue their respective assignments and passions fulltime or at least for the 5-days. It was as real as it could get to a real Press Team, albeit one run by students. A Press Team is a thing of beauty. You have your photographers who do not merely take pictures, but work to edit them in accordance to the theme of the paper. You have reporters who find and write the most relevant of stories to thrill a reader. Then there is the layout team who work together to produce spreads of impressive stylistic design they are the perfectionists and take pride in their craft. As an editor, I did not immediately find my place in the Press Room since I did not have a wholly

specialized function. While most might think that an Editors life in the Press Room is mundane and uneventful, they do take on a very special role: running around. It is not about exercise but more of becoming the link that keeps a Press Team together. In particular, it is the excitement of working with different kinds of people, from the writers to the layout team, which really makes the process of editing worthwhile. At the start of each day, I would discuss the proposed articles and spreads with the team, listening and making any changes. I coordinated with the writers, assigning each one a photographer and ensuring that every article had a layout spread. It was much more hands-on than the ons-and-offs of running a school magazine. We also had to adhere to the stringent deadlines set by the printers. Once the layout spreads were posted up on the Press wall, I would immediately go and edit them for any layout and grammatical mistakes. I would have my pen in my hand, ready to circle any misalignments of paragraphs or to write the correct spelling of a word before handing them over again to the layout. While doing this, I would converse with my other editor colleagues who would also voice any concerns and add suggestions to my corrections. This was all in preparation for the next morning where we would actually sell the paper to the delegates who were arriving at the conference from their buses. The four mornings we did this were moments of boding for the team. Together we would brave the cold wind of The Hague and shout, Buy a MUNITY; just one Euro! or even offer a free hug to those who bought. Yet, one of the other perks of being part of the MUNITY Press was, of course, interviewing famous people. Pictures courtesy of Anthony Gokianluy

The Author with Dr. Serge Brammertz From reporting on the new ideas for an MUN-exclusive website to interviewing Dr. Serge Brammertz, the keynote speaker of the conference and Chief Prosecutor for the International Criminal Tribunal for former Yugoslavia (ICTY), my experience as a Press member further piqued my interest in global affairs. Dr. Brammertz voiced his opinions on the role of the International Criminal Court (ICC) and its role in the international community, particularly in terms of the key principle of complementarity. Dr. Brammertz went on to explain, the ICC is only competent if national authorities are unable or unwilling to handle cases by themselves. I was surprised to learn that realpolitik was an important consideration in international discussions. One must learn to acknowledge the different factors, such as time or evidence, that may affect the course of the case. He emphasized the importance of the empowerment of national authorities and of objectivity -- nothing is black and white. The professionalism exhibited at this conference was astounding. It was this sheer experience of having a hand in the entire process of writing to layouting, and meeting people who had a stake in issues of international importance that really moved me. As an international Press Team, we took the initiative to take MUNITY to new heights, using our unique skills to ensure that everything seamlessly came together for a very fun and satisfying conclusion. At the end of the day, MUNITY was more than just words on newsprint -it was a conference paper bred from the passions and experiences of its creators. What I wouldnt give to spend just one more day in my second home and with the team that has become my family for the unbelievably short five days of THIMUN.


I Think, Therefore, IB.

By Denise Francisco, Grade 11
ccording to some, it is the epitome of adolescent meltdowns and ultimate mental tension. It drives students to the brink, causes sleepless nights, and eats up every single second of a teenagers High School life. No, this doesnt concern teen angst and hormonal changes. This powerful force is none other than the International Baccalaureate educational system, also referred to with the dreaded two letters - IB. The acronym IB has gone through the halls of the ISM community probably more frequently than hello. Every student in the entire High School has probably heard of the relentless, seemingly insurmountable amounts of IB homework given each week. Most underclassmen fear it, and upperclassmen are currently living it, breathing it, (unfortunately not sleeping it) in the hopes of surviving their last two years of High School with the jubilant thought of ending their IB days forever. However, people may misunderstand or even overestimate the profound rumors that IB has instigated within little Freshmen and nervous Sophomores. So, to answer these inquiries, I would like to dispel these misconceptions. In my experience, though I have only recently stepped into IBs realm of pressure and depth of subject matter, I have known the system ever since Middle School. The advantage of having a brother and sister a couple of years ahead of you and studying within the IB Diploma curriculum is that you know what to expect. My sister, Nicole Francisco, is an alumna from the ISM batch of 2010. She always made it a point to remind me that In IB, you need to be smart and manage your time well, or else you wont get anything done. For those who are not as lucky to have an IB veteran for an older sibling, the fear of these taunting rumors haunts them. For example, Freshman Karina Swee says that, I have heard IB is extremely, extremely hard. Especially when you have extra-curricular activities; its hard to manage your time. Im pretty nervous for Junior and Senior year. I guess you could say Im really nervous for IB since Im not exactly the best at organizing my time. This constant foretelling of failing under such circumstances is the common consensus among the underclassmen. This academic paranoia has escalated these past few years as, international schools have become more competitive in the hopes that their students reach the top notch US Universities.


Amidst all this fear however, one Sophomore thinks of the IB experience in a positive light. Kara Maeda truthfully saysI AM SO SCARED OF IB. I see upperclassmen dying every day from all the workload and stress. But I also have heard that the satisfaction when you finish is amazing. Part of me is terrified, but part of me cannot wait for the day I get that diploma and walk offstage, accomplished. Despite all fears, most of the student body passes through ISMs High School program of study with a certain IB course. Whether it be the IB Diploma or IB Certificate. Before we get ahead of ourselves, we must remember that despite all the worry and talk about IB, there are several incentives in pursuing such a course. According to Myers Park High School (rated as the 43rd top High School in America), as a group, IB students earn higher average SAT scores and maintain higher grade point averages at universities than students who have not attended IB schools. This showcases the difference between the mentality of an ordinary High School student and the mentality of an IB High School veteran. Myers Park even goes so far as to say, The International Baccalaureate is quite simply the most exciting High School academic program offered today. In this, certainly its clear that the IB proposes more opportunities to ambitious High School students. Mentality is first, and second is the preparedness of the High School Senior, who will one day make an expectedly smooth transition to college. Many graduates have confessed that the IB has in fact, remarkably assisted their move into the college world. That the work load, the time management skills, the techniques and education learnt is applied during university years, and is actually much appreciated. For those who expect the worst of things, fear not. The IB is a rite of passage. It is a passage that may, at times, seem incredibly challenging and overwhelming. At times, it may even bring out the worst in us. However, it will be a godsend once we get over these two years. It helps create an additional, supporting step to help us onto the next rungs in our academic lives. As a current Senior in ISM, Sam Wong states even though [she] felt stressed about the pressures of IB, if managed properly, IB really isnt too bad. It just forces you to be organized. It definitely pushes students to challenge themselves, to find their own personal limits as without doubt the courses are difficult. So how do you survive? What is the secret? Truthfully, it is all in your ability to manage your time, to keep yourself ontrack, organized and focused. To succeed you need to be concentrated and fully determined to dedicate all your time to these two years. From the time I have spent in IB, I have to say that it has assisted my study habits, forced me to learn new ways of coping and has made me a better student. So to all the Freshmen and Sophomores out there: theres no need to be afraid of the upcoming years. Countless Juniors and Seniors, batches ahead of you all have gone through it and have come out alive, so, who says you cant too?

Picture of Ms. Van Nooten courtesy of Angel Feliciano


Our Second Parents: The Guidance Counselors

tudents of International School Manila spend over nine hours in school everyday, so it is only right to say that ISM really is their second home. But if this is the case, then who are our second parents? According to ISMs website, The goal of the ISM Guidance and Counseling Department is to facilitate the growth and well-being of each student and to help each individual achieve academic, personal, and life success. School life is meant to equip students with the skills and values students will need for life after college or university. This is a vital part of their growth and maturity as independent and prepared individuals, and at the heart of this development are our beloved Guidance Counselors. ES Guidance Counselor


By Gaea Morales, Grade 9

Courtesy of Angel Feliciano

The roles of the schools Guidance Counselors vary from one department to another. What an Elementary School Counselor has to do would be different from what a Middle School Counselor will have to accomplish, and this would have even greater contrast against a High School Counselors duties. No matter how different, all Guidance Counselors play a huge role in a students life in, and outside of school. What are the most difficult situations to get by for an Elementary School student? A fight with a best friend over a stolen crayon? Being teased or called a mean name? When the world of an Elementary School student becomes dark, the Guidance Counselors are there to tell him or her otherwise. They are patient and willing to listen. They help calm what to us, High School students seem like superficial tears, gradually helping teach these students to become stronger and to accept others and themselves. The Guidance Counselors are there to keep these young students going and help solve the issues they could not solve on their own. In Middle School, things get a bit more complicated, however problems are no longer about toys or nicknames. Small decisions need to be made at this point, as school is no longer all fun and games with studies growing more significant in preparation for High School. Coping with these changes mental, physical and emotional is difficult for everyone, especially since it is the time of the dreaded P word - puberty. Guidance Counselors are important to the ISM community because they make students feel that they always have someone to open up to whenever they are having trouble or when they need advice on something, says Isabelle Ilaya, an Eighth Grader, I know a few people who did when they were having issues in school or at home that they cant really talk about to anyone. Emotional matters are the biggest issues at this point of school life, and being able to find someone without personal bias is a challenge. The Guidance Counselors are those people who make dealing with such issues possible and MS Guidance Counselor making life as a Middle School student enjoyable, memorable, and a true learning experience. Be it Freshman or Senior year, High School brings even more work to be completed, much more difficult decisions to be made, more conflicts, and basically just more drama. From the moment Freshman year starts, college draws closer and closer, and even closer is the International Baccalaureate or the IB program. Things are definitely not always easy. I get really stressed a lot and during one of my worst periods, my Counselor really helped me put things into perspective. I owe her a lot for that, it really helped me get back on my feet, says Lynn Yu, a High School Junior, she also continually helps me by answering every trivial little question I may have about college applications and giving me advice. In such a confusing, busy and important time in my life, I really dont know what

Courtesy of Anthony Gokianluy


I would do without my Guidance Counselor there to guide me along the way. Most students have heard that what they choose to do in High School will greatly impact their future and for those who are in the process of making those decisions, there is a lot of pressure indeed. Guidance Counselors do not only serve as mentors to guide students through High School, but also serve as friends who are willing to listen when it feels like no one else has the time to do so. Whether it is an Elementary student crying over a broken toy or a High School student trying to decide what courses to take or where to go for college, the ISM Guidance Counselors are always there, guiding students into the right direction and helping them discover themselves and achieve their goals in life. Counselors have been there since the very first day of school, and will be there until graduation day, just as proud as any parent could ever be. Courtesy of Angel Feliciano

Basketball Team Interview


By Pedro Roxas, Grade 10

Freshman: Gabsy Francisco

Courtesy of Isabel Francisco

What do you want to achieve?

I want to make an impact when I step on the court, on either offense or defense.

What experiences do you look forward to?

I look forward to traveling for the first time with the team, and winning gold in IASAS.

What is something you enjoyed this year?

It was fun basically just playing basketball with everyone and getting better, and IASAS at home was amazing. Even if I didnt get to play, the atmosphere was great!

Senior: Miguel Olfato

How long have you been playing for?

Ive been playing since I was about five years old.

What do you love most about this sport?

I love being able to compete at an intense level with my teammates who I am very familiar with (some of whom I have known for five or so years already).

What awards have you won?

I won the bronze medal in this years [Basketball] IASAS.

What was your favorite part of this season?

HS Guidance Counselor Favorite part of the season: No favorite part of the season. The whole season itself was very memorable.

What is your best memory?

When the buzzer sounded in the bronze game and everyone went absolutely nuts!



Inception by Language By Chris Ong, Grade 11

ow important guage?



For most, language is a form of communication, a way to get a message across to someone else. Perhaps it can come in the form of a text message or a Facebook wall post. Or perhaps in the lines of dialogue in your favorite book or TV show. Yes, these are important uses of language, but how much do we really know about the influence of language on our minds and thoughts? It is at times disturbing to think of how much language has a grip on our lives. It is so important that often times, it is the basis of human thought. Mr. Peter Curry, an English teacher, says, If you havent got a name for it, you cant understand it. If you cant use language to describe it, its not knowledge. Its data. Language crosses the boundaries of psychology, linguistics, philosophy, perception, history and culture, permeating all the facets of human life. Clearly, language has an immense

influence on how we understand the world. The more language we know, the more capable we are of describing and processing the world around us. Mr. Curry also says that if you make the language difficult, then you cant have outsiders coming in. Therefore, that knowledge is valuable. Language is currency. If, for example, you learn the currency or jargon of a particular profession, those who havent learnt this literally have to pay for the use of that language. However, one might ask: is this not an exploitation of language? This is when we enter the dark side of language, the things about language that are rarely spoken about. Here, we find ourselves saying that language is the stuff of thought, but does not that also mean that language is a form of thought control? We use language to shape other peoples ideas,

Courtesy of Angel Feliciano

says Mr. Curry. The best example is when we label someone as a terrorist or a freedom fighter. We see this today in the form of the media, in the form of advertising and popular culture, with word choice and the use of language affecting our perception of the information we receive. Billions of dollars are being invested in controlling language to persuade: to buy a product, to buy a service, to support a cause, or to vote for a politician. As Mr. Cook, an English teacher new to ISM this year, says, language is empire. If you have con-

Courtesy of Isabel Martel Francisco

Courtesy of Isabel Martel Francisco


trol over language, you have control over people. He continues, rhetoric isnt about the truth anymore. Rhetoric is something that is used to force your opponent to submit, and in the end, nobody is interested in the truth. We can subtly change the implications of what we say just by using a different word or a different order of words. Mahek Tulsiani, a Junior, says, Right now, Im studying the book The Chronicles of A Death Foretold in both my English and Spanish classes, and I always find it interesting and surprising to see that the meaning of certain words and phrases can change depending on the language in which it is being said. Does that mean a translation could change someones opinion, that language can be exploited to cause differences in cultural beliefs? It is not difficult to think that we now live in a world where connotations become more important than denotations, where pathos becomes more important than communication, and where truth is hidden behind a wall of tangled-up strings of words. Its a power game. Witnessing all this thought control and manipulation, one might propose a change to language to make it simpler, to make communication clearer and to avoid being controlled. However, how would one go about doing this? Is it not another way of becoming controlled? When we remove words from a language, we will eventually lose words to express our individual emotions. Mr. Cook says, if you dont have subcultures in the language, pretty soon we all conform, and we all start thinking uniformly. In the end, communication will happen, but about nothing deep and meaningful Imagine boring conversations everyday for the rest of your life. Paradoxically, he says that the beauty of language ultimately relies on the fact that it is so diverse and used in different ways with different word choice and syntax, that the richness of our thoughts, our cultures and our lives depends on the richness of the language being used.

So finally, I ask Mr. Cook, then what are we supposed to do with language? After all, with all the paradoxical strangeness of this thought control, we would want to do something to achieve better communication and retain diversity at the same time. His reply is short. He says, I dont have

any opinion about it. I think language just is. Language is important, but its neither good nor bad. So post and tweet away! However, you may want to watch out for those certain advertisements.

631-9648; 403-4159



Battle of the Bands: Lighting Up a Stage, Lighting Up a Life.

By Mara Javier, Grade 12
his year marked the 9th annual Battle of the Bands (BOB). This event has become a very inspiring tradition at ISM. Not only does it bring hundreds of people together to appreciate and support music and talent throughout our schools community, but it also raises awareness and funds for a charity organization in the Philippines. This years profits were given to an Aeta community in Mount Pinatubo. The aim is to assist these provincial inhabitants by lighting up or providing electricity to their school. The BOB Committee and the ISM community will work together to provide the sustainable solar technology necessary to generate and supply electricity for lights, a multimedia system, as well as computer and radio systems. The community was also chosen through a strict screening process and is highly regarded by the National Commission on Indigenous Peoples (NCIP). To light things up, Battle of the Bands allowed all spectators and fans to participate in the talent-packed shows as a huge raffle took place for everyone to win prizes. Some of the sponsored prizes included products from companies such

as Kamiseta, Little Gym, and Apple. The committee worked continuously from the beginning of the school year to put together a spectacular show and to prepare. They recruited several performers, collaborated with the charity, collected sponsors, and planned an awesome stage and line-up. With vocals, bands, and a variety of genres such as pop, alternative, and rock, it was an action-filled concert with perfoming acts from all throughout ISM. Vocal soloists, groups and bands had also been practicing for months to put on fantastic performances. As BOB Vocals winner for two consecutive years Stephan Chan says, BOB is such an attraction because it allows people to see their friends perform and provides the rare opportunity for individuals to show off their musical and vocal talent. The show brought the entire community together through music. New musicians and singers were discovered, making the event an even greater triumph. The success of BOB has exponentially grown, especially since last years three-day concert garnered the largest crowd in the events history. Each year, it gets bigger and better. This event really pulled out all the stops. Battle of the Bands is a huge concert that really

hits all the right notes, and it did so again this year! STATISTICS: 440,000 pesos were raised in total 200,000 went to the Solar Light Project to provide much needed electricity to Traditional Origins Ethnic Education School. 135,000 was used to purchase 500Php gift certificates for 270 contracted employees at ISM. 24,000 went to the Vicky SyCip Herrera Scholarship Fund which benefits Filipino Scholars with an ISM education. 20,000 went to buy packages of pens and school supplies in support of the schools Pen Drive for PCF. The remaining 61,000 pesos was given to the Japanese Red Cross in support of the earthquake and Tsunami victims.. Approximately 550 people attended the Saturday preliminaries and 700+ people came to the Friday Finals. The Battle of the Bands Committee and Mr. Hutch thank the ISM Community!

Pictures courtesy of Zaina Ahmed



Light Up A School Light Up A Life

Battle of the Bands 2011
By Manni Cavalli-Sforza, Grade 12

hats the relationship between light, education, solar power and indigenous communities? Surprisingly, these four areas are very closely linked by a common, binding thread: empowerment. Last March, ISMs 9th Annual Battle of the Bands rallied students, teachers and parents to support an Aeta communitys efforts to tie these four threads together in their pursuit of education. The Aeta people are the aboriginal population of the Philippines. They are a gentle, shy, and beautiful people whose lifestyle hinges on living in harmony with the ecosystems of the forest environment with which they share a reciprocally nurturing relationship. As a result, the Aeta possess an irreplaceable body of knowledge about nature and living in harmony with the environment as well as crucial knowledge regarding the medicinal use of plants. Like other indigenous peoples their survival is intrinsically linked to the survival of our natural habitat and the health of our planet. Unfortunately, the Aeta have experienced various forms of displacement for centuries, as a result of man-made and natural catastrophes. Most recently, in 1991, Mt. Pinatubo provided the world with one of the biggest eruptions of the 20th century and covered the homes, fields and traditional hunting areas of the Aeta with ash driving them from their homeland and mountain bound lives. In the evacuations following the eruption, most of the surviving Aeta were brought to resettlement camps, where they faced a crisis of ethnic existence. No longer were they selfsufficient, which was the backbone of the Aetas cultural and ethnic identity; no longer were they intimately in touch with their life-sustaining forests and mountain. So, in an attempt to reclaim their livelihood and spirit as communities, the Aeta began to move back to their homeland surrounding Mt. Pinatubo. In their time in the resettlement camps, however, the Aeta children did encounter one thing that would leave an impression on their communities:

Courtesy of Manni Cavalli-Sforza schooling. Having noted the opportunities education presented for their future generations, Aeta elders asked the schools to migrate with them as they returned to their homeland to regain their cultural heritage. Elders understood that literacy empowered their communities against exploitation by outside forces and opened up children entirely new worlds of opportunity. In this pursuit, they turned to the Entrepreneur Volunteers Assistance Charity Foundation (EVACF for help. EVACF is an award winning NGO formed in 1991 to help the Aetas build a new foundation for their communities after their displacement by the eruption of Mt. Pinatubo. Their work began with a range of training, livelihood projects and loan programs. It has continued by addressing the Aetas interest in education by offering educational scholarships, adult literacy programs and the construction of schools in remote Aeta communities. Traditional Origins Ethnic Education Schools (TOE2S) give Aeta children the opportunity to pursue an education in the caring and culturally supportive environment of their own communities avoiding the necessity of travelling long distances to public schools where they often suffer discrimination and mistreatment. The schools also function as health centers, classrooms for adult literacy and community meetings when they are not in use for the childrens education. Recently, solar power has presented itself as the next ambition of Aeta communities in the development of their TOE2S as productive educational centers. Solar lighting allows the school buildings to operate after dark, enabling the centers to fulfill their competing functions without encroaching on the class time of Aeta children. Solar electricity also presents the possibility for the schools to enhance their learning experience giving the Aeta access to multimedia educational material and potential for computer literacy equipment. What is more, the clean energy solar power provides speaks directly to the Aetas intimate harmony with their environment as a clean, non-polluting source of energy. Light Up a School, Light Up a Life aimed to bring solar power to a remote Aeta community of Mount Pinatubo by helping them financially with the installation of a solar lighting and multimedia system in their TOE2S, training the teachers and elected villagers in the repair and maintenance of the solar technology. So, amongst the unquenchable competition between ISM bands and vocalist groups for entertainment excellence at the 9th Battle of the Bands, the efforts of the students, parents and teachers came together in support of lighting up the lives of Aeta children and adults. The funds raised strengthened the thread of education that weaves the Aetas empowerment and growth as a community in their own right.




No club before us has ever done the sorts of things that we do. No experience (save that of, perhaps, ICARE) gives you the same sense of camaraderie, gives you the same sense of accomplishment and belonging as those that occur during REAL trips - whether its setting foot on the top of Mt. Maculot, narrowly escaping death from mountain biking in Tagaytay, or watching the sun set after surfing your very first wave; Its a club whose destination is the journey and experience. To those who have not yet heard of the new club in town, the Recreation Environment Adventure (REAL) club is a newly formed initiative in High School founded by Blanca Villanueva, who also happens to be the current President. To say that no other club in ISMs history has ever done the things that the REAL club does is indeed a bold statement. But there is nothing but truth to what has been said, for REAL club is worthy of such recognition. REAL offers students with a plethora of opportunities to embark on adventurous activities that promote amity and admiration of the environment something no other club in the history of ISM has done. Although REAL has only celebrated its second year, the club has proven to be one of the most active clubs at ISM. Many people inquire about how the club came into existence. The officers accredit their advisor; Mr. McLean, Pictures courtesy of Real Club a geography and anthropology teacher at ISM, who actually conceived the idea of an adventure club. At the end of Mr. McLeans first year of teaching at ISM, he gathered about 20 freshmen and showed them pictures of his adventures and told stories of his previous ventures. He asked the young group of students to raise their hands to indicate whether or not they thought theyd be interested in establishing an adventure club at ISM. As all 20 students indubitably and instantaneously raised their hands, the idea for the club had passed the test. The rest is history. From its humble beginnings, the club has risen to become one of the most respected and successful clubs in High School.


By Julia Saubier, Grade 11

Activities that promote amity and admiration of the environment

In essence, the clubs objective as an adventure club is to provide its members with the opportunity to appreciate the environment in a unique manner. Blanca says, We aim to push peoples

comfort levels: to allow them the audacity to leap, to attempt to do things that they didnt think they could. Another of our aims is to make sure that everyone is still accommodated accordingly. We want you to push yourself, but we want you to have fun, too. The experience gained from the trips is a character building mechanism the act of proving negative thoughts wrong, builds self-confidence and instills an I can do it attitude in all of REALs members. While the mere description of the club and the word adventure itself have led to many of the more reserved and perhaps less athletically inclined to overlook this article and flip to other pages, the club is not at all exclusive or restricted for those athletically gifted. Blanca says, I hope that everyone joins REAL, that it becomes as entrenched in ISM culture as ICARE. On the sign-up sheets, I see people Id never have expected to see. I see Middle School students sign up (as we open a number of trips to them), regardless of the age difference. I see people who I knew were extremely fit, who Im glad decided to try a new sort of challenge; I see people like me, incredibly uncoordinated, and those who barely


make it to the final checkpoint, but who try anyway because theyve heard about how much fun the trips were, regardless of what place they finished in. Despite the challenging nature of the trips, anyone is welcome to join because by the end of the trip, youd always feel accomplished with what you have achieved, whether thatd be surfing your first wave or completing your first bike ride around Taal. REAL does plan challenging trips, however, and rest assured, this challenge can be overcome by the ability to merely view it with positivity and optimism. Trips are open to everyone, but members do get priority. Members essentially act as unofficial public relations officers, informing friends and peers about trips convincing others to engage in a real adventure. For the officers of REAL, despite the difficulties of finding feasible venues and planning the trips, according to Blanca, When members spread word about trips, they do it because they care, and thats the best feeling as a leader - knowing that you dont ever have to remind your members what the clubs about, or what theyve got to do for it, because it means something different to everyone and they act towards achieving success for the club in their own ways. This year, the clubs adventurous endeavors include a myriad of new activities. REAL has attempted to reach

Chiang Mai includes trekking, visiting temples, learning basic Thai, rock climbing, rappelling, playing with elephants
out to ISMs existing service partners so that even those people who are unofficially a part of the ISM community can experience the many aspects of REAL which Blanca enumerates as the fun, the camaraderie, the achievement, the love. Last year, the club held a Saturday service trip to Taktak Falls with the Environment Council. The club also planned and executed a surfing trip in Zambales, a sailing trip in Taal, and a mountain biking trip in Tagaytay. Clearly, the club is not limiting itself to not only adventurous outings, but also it plans to reach out to new service partners. REAL plans to organize a Saturday service trip with the Bajaus, a nomadic boat-dwelling indigenous group who has been displaced from their former home, Mindanao. This year the club has already had 3 trips: surfing in Zambales, mountain biking in Taaland, and trekking in Mt. Maculot. Apart from the service trip with the Bajaus and another prospective trip involving rock climbing walls in April, the club is currently planning its biggest trip thus far - a week-long trip to Chiang Mai, Thailand. A seemingly difficult task of getting such a large trip approved by the administration has been receiving green lights from the get-go. Blanca says, I think its because they get it. They get that were an adventurous club (by definition, I guess), and they understand what REALs all about, what it has done for a number of students, and its potential to do even more for the ISM community. The trip will be organized by Chiang Mai Rock Climbing Adventures (CMRCA), a group affiliated with the JUMP! Foundation, the group who organized this years leadership retreat for the student representatives of clubs and councils. The week-long trip occurring from June 11-18 to Chiang Mai includes trekking, visiting temples, learning basic Thai, rock climbing, rappelling, playing with elephants, and more. This milestone trip is undoubtedly going to go down in history as something groundbreaking, innovative and exciting; indeed a trip to remember! The REAL club has undoubtedly proved that you can step over thoughts deemed as unimaginable or impossible. REAL provides people with the opportunity to replace I cant with I can. Blanca concludes saying, REAL offers a connection to the environment in ways that many people at ISM had never even considered before theyd seen the smiles of people whod surfed in Zambales, the hugs shared by the people whod biked down Tagaytay, or the pumped fists by those whod conquered Maculot. Its work that serves as a break from work. Its fun that serves meaning much more than fun had at home. Its joy that cannot be easily reached elsewhere. But most of all, its love that doesnt manifest in many places. REAL is life.

For more information on the Chiang Mai Trip in June and on other REAL events, please contact Blanca Villanueva at


GIN: From concern to actionand everything full of life in between

By Moonie Sohn, Grade 10


n April 7, 2011, four High School students: Akshar Bonu, Mariella Salazar, Moonie Sohn, Lynn Yu, two Middle School students: Danielle Limcaoco, Alex Westfall, and two ISM teachers: Mr. McLean, Ms. Vogt embarked on a journey to the Jakarta International School to attend the Global Issues Network (GIN) conference 2011. As we rode that small truck to the Manila airport, playing the name-as-many-capitals-in-the-worldas-you-can game, I dont think any of us would have been able to predict what phenomenal experience we were off to or how strong our relationships would become. On Sunday morning, Alec Loorz, a young sixteen year old global warming activist, said something along the lines of sustainability is a word that we tend to use around. For me, the definition of sustainability is living like our future matters. Our choice, our future. We must accept realityour past generations may have spilled the milk, but we cant just sit and criticize corporations and governments, because, after all, its our future at

Courtesy of Lynn Yu

stake. Not so soon from now, we will be responsible for the inaction that we have so mindlessly pursued, and it most probably would be too late for us to turn back. When the time comes, would you regret not taking action? If I could say one thing about this years GIN conference, it would be that it was pure empowerment; encouragement to the highest level, utterly persuading me that I matter and I can fight for my future; that I should be fighting for my future, showing me with my own eyes that

there is hope and that our generation is composed of people who genuinely care! I will never forget these words and I sincerely ask that you, too, remember in times when you feel the most hopeless these words uttered by a participant at this prestigious conference: If you dont do anything, youre absolutely sure nothing is going to change. If you do something, at least you know something might change.

Picture of the ISM GIN Contingent courtesy of Tom McLean


Warriors of Change


By Alexei Acacio, Grade 9

study. In their Math classes, the students took time to learn how to use, interpret, and synthesize statistics, after which effective means of presenting data were also taught. Arguing for Change is intended to be a challenging but rewarding learning experience for the eighth graders. As Shivani Phadke from the Middle School Class of 2010 explains, the fact that it branches into other subjects allows one to form the understanding of how school subjects are connected, and the teaching of this concept allows for higher success in High School as you are no longer confining your brain to information from one particular class. Undoubtedly, Arguing for Change is an excellent opportunity for eight graders to take on the challenges of higher-level thinking. However, more importantly, AFC ensures that the eight graders are well prepared for High School, and perhaps beyond.

ith the start of the fourth quarter, the International School Manilas eighth graders began a challenging two-month project: Arguing for Change (AFC). The project spanned four classes, and required students to apply what they have learnt in their Math, Science, Social Studies, and English classes in a research and analysis based assignment. Students were expected to perform numerous tasks, each relating to an issue of global importance. Ultimately, students were expected to compile a report and present possible solutions to their assigned issue. The majority of the project revolved around the eighth graders Social Studies classes and in groups of three or four, students collaborated and researched a specific issue. Issues of study ranged from poverty, pollution, and urbanization to issues such as genetically modified organisms. The focus of the

research was to find possible solutions, and to be able to Argue for Change. At the end of the project, groups presented to a panel on the issue and its global significance, aiming to convince the panel that their issue is something that should be acted upon. In their English classes, the eighth graders began with a unit on persuasion. Students learned ways in which language is used to convince. A study of advertisements and persuasive text equipped the students with skills necessary for them to help address their research question. Students were required to act, and use persuasive techniques to convince an intended audience that solutions to global issues should be enforced. The Mathematics and Science departments played a more supplementary role in AFC. The Science department focused on how the issues affect the environment, the planet, and the human population. The eighth graders also learned the Science behind their issue of

Alice in Wonderland


By Louisa Cotterhill, Grade 8

so we hope everyone was able to catch Erin and the other Middle School students.


ow many of us have seen one of the movies or read the book Alice in Wonderland? Quite a few, I would assume. The classic story is graced the ISM stage last May with an original ISM twist, performed by Middle School students. The director of the play, Middle School drama teacher Ms. Sarah Purdue, explained that the process of planning Alice in Wonderland began back in April 2010, after the last Middle School play Seussical ended. Auditions were held in November 2010.

tor), Jacqui (costume designer and High School student), and myself, she continues, we have a company of about 70 kids contributing to the play, plus the adults and teachers contributing too. We also have a crew of about 25 people. However, what would a play be without the leading lady? Eighth grader Erin OReilly was chosen to play the part of Alice, which was the part she originally auditioned for. During rehearsals at the beginning of February, Erin commented that so far, practices have not been too hard, as the play was still in the early stages. She ended by saying, Im both nervous and exited for the play. The MS production of Alice in Wonderland was performed on May 5, 6, and 7, 2011. Students and adults worked on preparing for this play for over a year,

Ms. Purdue explains, the cast was picked by a panel of four people: Mr. Mulhall (MS drama teacher), Dinesh Mohnani (a High School student direc-

Picture of Erin OReilly courtesy of Louisa Cotterhill


For the Love of the Game: ES Sports Day

By Kimberly Go, Grade 9

Pictures courtesy of ES Parents & Teachers

he sight of students running around, grinning earto-ear, with their eyes wide open as they cheer on their peers to finish that last leg of the race--this could only be ES Sports Day. The annual Elementary School Sports Day, similar to the Middle School Sports Day and High Schools Battle of the Bearcats, is a day where all students from Preschool to Fourth Grade are excused from usual classes to participate in a wide range of individual and team sports and games. Mrs. Amanda Pekin, ES Physical Education Coordinator states that these activities are designed to be inclusive, fun, and challenging. During this day, all of ISMs facilities such as the swimming pool, fields, and gyms are put to maximize use. The activities prepared vary from common sports such as swimming and soccer, to classic games like the egg and spoon race, to creative challenges such as the scooter obstacle course and wet sponge throw. There will always be something for everyone, and even parents are welcome to join in, whether to help out, support their beloved daughter or son, or even to participate in the games!

There is, however, more to ES Sports Day than just playing out in the sun. Mrs. Pekin announces that ES Sports Day is a day where the students, young and bursting with energy are given the chance to see how physical activity provides opportunities for health, enjoyment, challenge, self expression and/or social interaction. The day celebrates the importance of leading an active lifestyle and promotes community, sportsmanship and collaboration. This idea is emphasized as third-graders are given the chance to share what they have learned about Sportsmanship during this day, after having done a six-week unit on it. Mrs. Pekin shares her own knowledge on it, saying that to develop good sportsmanship in children, it is important to convey a love of the game, not a love of winning. This is why ES Sports Day is not competitive and winning certificates or medals are not issued; many of the younger students are not emotionally ready to be in a competitive situation. She quotes Rob Gotlin, author of Dr. Robs Guide to Raising Fit Kids, and says, The goal of youth sports--especially younger ones--should be physical activity and social interaction. Mrs. Pekin expresses that if the students are being physically active they are a winner in the game of life, and this highlights the spirit of ES Sports Day.

Liz Song, current Fourth Grader, found ES Sports Day very fun and says it was a great opportunity to meet a lot of people from other Grades and to work with them. This year, ES Sports Day took place on February 18th and was filled with the liveliness and laughter of the elementary students. It was a day that, as Liz says, was awesome.


The Grade 4 Ambassador Program

Will we get more homework? Are the teachers stricter? Are older students mean? These are the common questions that cause hype and anxiety among soon-to-be Middle School students. Indeed, we have all had those goodbye old, hello new experiences, and at those certain moments, we are caught in an ambiguous state a mixture of emotions- half way between upset and excited. The transition between Elementary to Middle School is no exception. This stage is characterized as a period when mild confusion sets in, simultaneously coupled with feverish excitement. Students must often undergo the process of letting go of what they are accustomed to and venturing out into the unknown. To give a brief overview, the transition entails different class schedules, as well as changes from one main teacher to two core teachers, in different classrooms for various subjects. Sometimes students are not aware that there is a level of continuity from Grade Four to Five being that the curriculum expands on the inquiry - based style of learning. However, the differences in the system are overemphasized: students worry about navigating through different classes, and the increased responsibility as an older student. It is no wonder that students begin to feel increasingly burdened. cilitating the transition from Grade Four to grade five in Middle School. The Guidance office has strongly abided with the view that when the new setting is less unfamiliar and more accommodating, it will minimize the level of stress that may come with transitions. They have demonstrated their commitment to such belief by creating programs to respond to the endless queries and doubts that surface among up-andcoming Middle School students. In essence, the Grade Four Ambassador Program requires a boy and girl representative to be chosen to spend a day in Middle School. A Grade Five student, who has already adjusted to the system, will attend his classes with the Grade Four student throughout a normal day in school. In other words, the less experienced student shadows the more experienced student for a whole school day. Then, the representatives will return to their fellow peers and share their experiences. Mr. St. Laurent, who, along with Ms. Van Der Merwe, is at the forefront of the program and takes on a big role in supporting the tradition, says, the program tries to compensate for adjusting. The aim of this program is to help prospective students to form realistic expectations of Middle School. Another component is the Tour and Talk Program, which is a follow up to the Ambassador Program. This program entails a general orientation for all Grade Four students in which each Grade Four classroom will meet with counselors, followed by an inquiry session. Topics of inquiry include getting to class on time, changing classes, getting through crowded halls, and remembering what class to go to next. Through this program, the Middle School Guidance Counselors seek to ensure a successful introduction to the Middle School experience, dismissing many concerns and replacing them with positivity and enthusiasm. Then, MS Peer Helpers will take hopeful students on a complete tour of Middle School, and as the more experienced batch, they will share their own insights and experiences. The Ambassador Program began in early May and the Tour and Talk program occurs a few weeks after. Both initiatives are considered the first steps of the transition, as well as the first phase of awareness.


By Krystal Kang, Grade 11

We dont want the students to fear the unknown, Mr. St. Laurent adds. We try to alleviate the fear. It is for those reasons the Middle School Guidance Counselors rely on these preliminary programs to promote the best interests of the students. Sometimes, students are disorientated because they were once the oldest kids, or rather the top of the chain. And through this transition, they have to start at the bottom once more the lowest of the chain. These programs are successful in putting Middle School in a friendlier light, and they try to be as accommodating as possible. Fears and anxieties aside, the transition to Middle School does have its benefits. According to Mr. St. Laurent, students are excited to move on to the place where bigger is better and better is bigger. For one, the eagerness to enter Middle School has been attributed to the culinary delights that are offered in the canteen. A Middle School student is given different food choices in the canteen during lunch, and additionally, they are given freedom to sit wherever they want. Teachers have also contributed greatly to the programs and help address student concerns. Collaboration of Grade Four and Five Teachers has been widespread, and these hardworking faculty members usually come together to discuss apocryphal perceptions of Middle School. Mr. St. Laurent strongly believes that its important to create awareness to make the first day less difficult. There is nothing but truth in what he says, as there is no better preparation than to understand the routine and procedures of Middle School. Through these programs, it becomes possible to change the perceptions of soon-to-be students in ways that are infused with more optimism and eagerness, prepping them for the exciting adventure yet to come!

Pictures courtesy of David Zhang, Grade 4 But fret no more. In response to the heightened frenzies of Grade Four students as they near the end of their final year in Elementary School, the Middle School guidance has taken increased initiative to take an active approach in fa-


MS Life Outside the Classroom


By Alyzza Acacio, Grade 9

ne of International School Manilas school-wide goals includes encouraging students to be committed to make a positive impact on their communities. There are many ways to fulfill this goal ranging from going to Saturday Service trips to organizing fundraising concerts. Classroom Without Walls (CWW) in the Middle School is the equivalent of ICARE in High School where students take a week outside the classroom to experience new learning opportunities. CWW happens annually and this school year, CWW was held from February 14 to18, 2011. Each Grade level visits sites that have been carefully chosen. According to Mr. David Allen, Eighth Grade CWW coordinator, the choices are made by grade level leaders who spend many hours looking for the best and safest environment for our students to learn outside the classroom. This year, the Fifth Graders visited Subic to enhance their team-building. At the same time, they also planted tress to help the environment. The Sixth Graders traveled to many different areas such as Corregidor to learn about Philippine History during colonization and to Gawad Kalinga to help build houses for those in impoverished communities. In Seventh Grade, students were divided into small groups consisting of 12-14 people and a teacher. The groups alternated to visit a total of five different sites, two of them being the La Mesa Eco Park and Habitat for Humanitys site in Calauan, Laguna. Students from the Papaya Academy, Childhaus, and Love2Learn also went to the ISM campus where the Seventh Graders interacted with them in a day full of fun. The Eighth Grade CWW was arranged similarly to ICARE as students got to choose from over seven different sites. These include: Caliraya, Geo Farm, Subic, The Stairway Foundation, Chosen Childrens Village, Makabata, and PAWS (Philippine Animal Welfare Society). The coordinators have included a wide range of sites to suit different student interests

and at the same time promote Service Learning. For example, Makabata is a school where the participants paint murals and teach students, while PAWS is an animal shelter where participants interact with animals and help maintain the area. CWW encourages students to step away from their comfort zones and seek new adventures while helping communities in need. It also allows students to experience the beauty of our host country, the Philippines. Not only does this week inspire students to be ethical and positive contributors to society, but it is also a time of challenge and fun. Mr. Allen states that [students] have a great time in a different environment and learn many new trans-disciplinary skills. They take away memories that last forever.

Courtesy of Mrs. Hillman


Service Learning at ISM, 2010-2011

The International School Manila has a deep commitment to developing responsible, caring and ethical contributors to society so, it is therefore essential that all students have both the opportunity and guidance to engage in meaningful Service Learning experiences. Where possible, students play an important part in planning, shaping and directing many aspects of their Service Learning experiences. The interaction between students from different Grades, cultures, life experiences with those of our partner organizations, develop a broader, more inclusive understanding of the world. In addition, it empowers students to address issues of real importance at both local and global levels. The program is supported by dedicated teachers and through projects such as ICARE, the Saturday Service Program, Grade Level activities, fundraising events and distinct partnership with outside organizations. Students are encouraged to make links between their curricula subjects and the issues that arise through Service Learning activities. Furthermore, Service Learning enables students to consider a range of possible solutions and take positive action. Service Learning activities are often ongoing therefore fostering long-term and sustainable relationships. Below is but a brief recap of some of the initiatives our community has supported through school year 2010-2011. Ondoy Shanty Project ISM donated a total of Php 996,600 to support the building of shelters for 45 families who had lost their houses after the ravaging typhoon, Ondoy. Computer Donations to PCF and Constructing Learning Through Technology: ISM donated 300 Computers and 100 Monitors to PCF and Constructing Learning Through Technology, as well as other books and media resources. Floods in Pakistan: ISM donated to the International School of Islamabad through student-led activities such as: Comic Relief, Bake Sales and donations into the Disaster Relief Fund. Over $2000 was raised. Band Aid donated $5000 to the Children of Haiti Project. 100% of the donation was utilized directly to create and operate a childrens educational center for Haitis poorest children. After the devastating earthquake and tsunami in Japan, our Support for Japan raised over $12,000 through student and parent led initiatives, with proceeds being donated directly to the Japanese Red Cross. The Service and Environmental Committee would like to extend our gratitude to our student, parent, faculty and staff volunteers for all of their time and effort. A Message of Thanks from our Service Learning Partner PCF as ISM donated computers for their school. Dear ISM Community, Many thanks again for your donation of computer units! These have now been installed in all the PCF classrooms. Teachers can now check their mail regularly and they dont have to queue up to research for lesson plans and materials which they used to do in the Faculty Room. Special thanks to the ISM IT staff who helped make this happen!

Teacher Rose checking her mail after class

PCF United Soccer Team researching on field positions and team tactics before their practice.


March 31, 2011 Constructing Learning through Technology (CLT) and International School Manila (ISM): A year of considerable gains. Constructing Learning through Technology (CLT) is a non-profit organization dedicated to offering quality learning opportunities in non-formal settings to those under served. We feature technology rich environments, self directed learning in a convivial atmosphere. We owe a debt to the ISM community as our partnership has allowed a good deal of progress in a relatively short period of time. Let me take this opportunity to thank the individuals who have been decisive in helping extend our services to a variety of learning centers, helping a spectrum of learners from out-of-school youth, street kids, and other community based learners. Neil Woods has played a key role in bringing opportunities for partnership between the students at ISM and our learners in the communities. His efforts however have gone beyond his call of duty to include assistance in providing hardware to make our learning centers viable 21st century learning spaces for kids, who have been left out by the dominant school paradigm for learning. While Neil has lead the way, there have been countless interactions and facilitations by many staff, from accounting officials, teachers, security guards to librarians, but especially by the IT team under Alexander Van Iperen and Marvin Mamaril. Marvin and all the IT staff were exceptional in their support and attention to detail. They have gone, and continue to go out of their way to help our kids and the establishment of powerful learning centers It would be remiss to not mention Steve Ayling and Curt Nichols from the HS Guidance Office who prepared the students from ISM for their visits to our learning centers. The work done by the students, coordinated by Steve has been a lesson for me in terms of how much to expect from youngsters from ISM. Constructing Learning through Technology and our partner NGO SPECS hosted two sites for I-CARE week. Much depended on the maturity and leadership qualities of the students visiting to achieve even a part of our goals. I was quite frankly staggered by the quiet, unassuming commitment of many of the ISM students who visited some tough locations. Four learning labs were set up, and this would not have happened but for the leadership of the students, the support of the IT department and those mentioned above. Our stakeholders are excited by our progress; it seems to exemplify a gift that keeps giving. A food donation may have lasted a day or a week. These learning labs which are already in service, will continue for years to come. There are several new projects being generated by materials from ISM. We have been fortunate to partner with the Mayor of Taguig, and the Sen. Rene Cayetano Science High School. There we have installed a 5600 book library, a video-based instructional system with 10-15 classrooms equipped with TV VCR, and at least 2 IT learning labs that will be serving the day time school and after-school, community-based learners. During the weekend of April 2 we established a learning center in a re-location town in Pampanga. A further eight provincial projects with Commission for Information Communication and Technology (CICT) and E-skwela projects are awaiting transportation commitments. Constructing Learning through Technology is a completely volunteer-run organization. We are ambitious and feel we can offer exemplars for a new approach to learning. Our approach centers on self-directed learning, respects the individual learners interests and levels of knowledge. We are looking to include more internet connectivity, digital camera and new media options in our learning centers. Of course we wish to consolidate and foster a mutual partnership in learning between CLT and ISM. For more information, look on Facebook at Constructing Learning through Technology, or email Pictures of the I-CARE and other work being done are available on flickR. Thanks to the students and the whole ISM community for a great year! Yours truly, Jon Mannion Executive Director Constructing Learning through Technology.


CWW: Classroom Without Walls

Pictures courtesy of Sienna Hagedorn, Grade 6

CWW T-Shirt

ISM Students Interacting with the CWW kids

Courtesy of Mabel Lu, Grade 10 Courtesy of Regina Cruz, Grade 10

Mr. Barton plays with local children

Isabel Sicat, Grade 12, plays with a child

ES Community Gardeners
Pictures courtesy of ES Community Gardeners


Poetry & Art Corner


Julia Saubier, Grade 11
Almost imperceptible The rounded glass encapsulated a Utopia Lush folds of greenery, Juxtaposed with an endless plain of white grains Surrounded by an infinite blue Even more compelling, the white spherical balls Shake, shake, shake tumbling down. Creating an artificial picturesque mountain of snow. Perceptible. The restrictions formed by society. Profuse sprouts of tall materialistic breathing monsters. Juxtaposed with the commercial image of an empty, vivid plane. Surrounded by an endless cloud of grey. Shake, shake, shake the previous remains the same. A rather Smokey mountain, replaces the pure white cordillera of snow. Enthralling, the eyes fixed on the snow globe Frightening! The eyes fixed on reality. Almost imperceptible Utopia Perceptible Reality.


Julia Saubier, Grade 11
What transpired, transpired once. So now, Its hidden from memory a fruit he sweetened: the skin relinquishing, then the knife, the broken vow entangled on my lips, his lips, the thin integument separating us, the fruitful frown, tongue, my labium inferius and his, the way he electrified my bubbling cells now, my body occupies his cerebrum, the kiss perpetual for the instant, but endowed a series of pixilated memories flashing violently. Kisses are short, penetrating in, as they keep scattering light. Ahead of the crown we sliced a fruit. The juice colored his sins and wouldnt wash away. Stained, for eternity.

By Sera Yun, Grade 10
Dont let them shape you into a mold for clay is not what you are made of, for you are not segregated soil but the revived and enkindled heart of the motherland, pervading vitality and blood into every soul. Emotions bound into an unfastening tangle, They nudge you They scowl at you They spit at you They nimble on you They thrust heartless grimaces and are immersed in an endless blackhole, and they whisper to you with an ashen heart. That you may be the son of Satan Or a crow of sorrow. Their hands are too maimed to tickle Your stainless hands. and those delicate fingers, those magical, rapidly-growing trees. Which they trot amongst. Remember, they flutter like cleft shreds of trashed tissues. Around such majestic trunks. They may prick your palms, But dont let the blood that will bleed Smear upon your own sleeves For then, the clots shall seep through your own skin.

Para sa Magtataho!
ni Anthony Gokianluy, Grade 12
(Inaalay ko ang tulang ito kay Mang Fernando Kasupanan, ang napakasipag na magtataho ng Greenhills, San Juan) Maliit na karinderya: Arnibal, gulaman at sago, Lahat bago at sariwa Pagkain ng taumbayan, taho! Mula kay Noy, presidente hanggang kay Juan trabahador lahat ay mga pasyente ng mabait na kargador! Siya si Manong Matiyaga Ito ang kanyang kasabihan: Ang taong tinatawanan ang siyang kinabaliktaran! Suki, sampung piso kada baso Sarap ng tokwa sa tiyan ng tao!


Courtesy of Sabrina Silvero

ni Kris Domingo (a.k.a. Divo ng IBSL Filipino), Grade 12

Pagkatapos ng tatlong taong pagkasakop naranasan ng ating bansa ang isang kultura, kulturang sa simulay hindi angkop, Pero sa kabataan ngayoy parang mahika Isang istilo ng pagguhit na sikat sa kanyang inang bayan at sa ibang bansa. Huwag sanang tanggihin ito sapagkat marami ring makukuha sa Anime at Manga! Kahit ito ay galing sa dayuhang mananakop, puwede itong ituring parang regalo. Sa kanyang tauhan at kwentong angkop, sa leksyon kung saan ang mabuti at hustisya ay nananalo. Marami pa akong puwedeng sabihin tungkol dito, ngunit ibat iba ang puwedeng paningin Ito lang ang masasabi ko: Subukan niyong maranasan ito, baka kayo rin ay masiyahan nito!

Pagpapakilala sa Isang Dayuhang Istilo

The ISM Anime Club, courtesy of Sarah Pottier


The Modern Dilemna

by Nicole Calo, Grade 12
You trade emotions for the rigors of this life. You treat your heart as if it were a block of wood. Youre made of steel, but metal is made to rust. You cant be strong if your heart you cannot trust. The path of truth is painful, you turn the other way. You make mistakes and say that life is all play. you find no meaning in everything you do. No longer human, youre like a robots CPU. Like a wound up machine that goes on playing anyway. The heart and soul dries up like driftwood, and love has just decayed. Youre powerless and weak, but on the surface you look like youll make it. But the storm has not even begun. Be prepared young soul to face the challenges of life. Youll have no heart to guide your mind. If words be words, then say what needs be said. Put blood into actions, let not your works be dead. Life is hard to analyze. It is not a problem to be solved. We live on so many different layers. I dont know which one to live on at all. The problems are so complex. Ive just a simple mind. I only know how to be one person: this naive me that has stood the test of time. To be released into the wild free country where flowers grow, and love blooms in the grass; where secrets hidden are unearthed to bask in the warm sunlight. I represent life. And only life lived is worth living at all. Only life lived is worth sharing at all. If tomorrow were free from the shackles of today and of the past, then I welcome tomorrow with open arms. Lets make tomorrow last.

by Anthony Gokianluy, Grade 12
A young tyke, Nave and curious as ever, See the mighty establishment my dads own endowment. The clicking of typewriters, the chatter of employees the intense competitive factor, it all seemed big to me! Then, a tall lanky teenager barely reaching puberty The evolving world, a steadily growing responsibility. An aging father, a growing son, burdens spanning forever, my works just begun. Grow Faster! I need to prove myself stronger and not merely the Child of Owner. The incense sticks are passed from father to son. I will do my rounds, fulfill those expectations The smell of change is in the air!

All photos were taken from Microsoft clipart



Oil on Wood Kay Yang, Grade 12

Acrylic on Canvas Samantha Ramsey, Grade 11

Photography Isabel Martel Francisco, Grade 11 Color Pencil on Paper Rhea Schmid, Grade 12

Acrylic on Canvas Na Yon Kim, Grade 11


Photography Julia Saubier, Grade 11

Photography Julia Saubier, Grade 11

Acrylic Karla Grandy, Grade 7

Newsflash apologizes for a misprint in the second issue. The following piece of art is by Isabelle Ilaya, Grade 8.
Pencil Christina Park, Grade 8

Acrylic Ashwin Bhatta, Grade 8


Mixed Media Alyssa Saguin, Grade 7

Ceramics - Functional Vessel Fergus Gregory, Grade 7

Mixed Media Sarah D Souza, Grade 7

Acrylic MJ Lorenzo, Grade 6


Courtesy of Mara Javier