Manuela Varela

Manuela Varela

F4-F6 FINAL ASSEMBLY

On Friday 17th December, the School hosted the last of the End of Year celebrations. It was the turn of the oldest of the Junior students, F4-F6. Parents were invited to attend and the Gymnasium was the chosen venue for this happy occasion. Prizes were awarded, there was singing, speeches and lot of hand clapping, as we bid farewell to our Form 6 students who begin their journey in Senior.

 

Mr Rosevear's speech

In one school I worked in many years ago, teachers from Junior and Senior exchanged jobs for half a day. So, for example, a Junior art teacher went and taught Year 4 Liceo Geography, and vice versa. I was then the Head of PE and Sport, and I ended up being paired with a teacher in what would have been Form 1 or 2, with seven-year olds. Being young, and very ignorant of what it was like teaching children of this age, I thought ‘how difficult can this be?’ It was one of the hardest hours of my career. In fact, the whole exercise was ended for everyone after an hour because nobody found it easy. But the exercise was very useful, for we all had a greater appreciation of what other teachers went though. Sometimes this is referred to as ‘seeing the big picture’, because without knowing all the facts, it is all too easy to make judgments based on what you know, when there are a lot of things you do not. That is my first message to the children here today. Never assume anything. Always try and see reasons. Always do some research. And always check facts when possible.

My second message is about being kind and caring. We live in an age where everything happens quickly, and is forgotten just as quickly. My own theory is that 24-hour news channels started a lot of this, as presenters bombard with us information to capture our interest. What this means is that we move from one story to the next without really thinking carefully about what has just happened. When I was a child I remember someone saying to me, ‘have you stopped and thought about what you did today?’ I was a little confused, and replied that I hadn’t. Then she said, ‘in that case, think what kind action you did.’ A little embarrassed, I replied that I wasn’t sure. ‘In that case,’ she said, ‘you have not had a good day. Be kind and helpful always, for we all need friends and we all need support. If you remember one thing about what I say today, I hope it is that being kind in everything you do, is what defines you.

Some years ago, when I was writing speeches for students in Junior, it was easier because my son was the same age and I had some idea about TV characters, cartoons and what the current crazes like Lightning MacQueen, Pokemon or Minecraft were. Last week, I did spend some time looking, but all I could really find about what children are watching today is Mr. Bean! So, my third piece of advice then, is do not, ever, be like Mr. Bean.

It only leaves me to thank all the staff for everything they have done for you this year. Teaching young children can be very rewarding, but it takes energy and patience, as I learned all those years ago. I know your work is appreciated by students, parents and all of the school authorities. Now, it is time for us to take a break, and to enjoy the summer. I wish you all both Happy Holidays and a Happy New Year.

 

Mr Mallon's speech

PURPOSEWhat´s your WHY? February 9th 2021. I stood here in this gymnasium addressing the whole Junior staff for the first time in person. It was a chance for the teaching staff to get to know me and for me to get to know them. The first and most important question I asked them however was. What is your PURPOSE?

Students and parents, I thought this would be the perfect opportunity to hear just a selection of why our teaching staff do what they do. I would like to share with you all a cross section of the answers our teachers and teaching assistants gave. Some staff here amongst us today may well recognise their own words.

“ It´s about leaving a print on the children in my care. In the end they will not remember what they learned, but how they felt.”

 “ I really enjoy being a witness to when a student makes a connection and his or her face lights up.”

“ To see children smiling and to be able to know that they enjoy the process of learning makes it all worth it. “

 “ I am here because I couldn´t be doing anything else than teaching….everything is about my students, helping them discover passion in the things they do, gives me great pleasure.”

 “ I feel I can make a difference. I believe in the uniqueness of my children and I need them to see that all of them can, and will shine. All of them have a light inside no matter if they see it or not. “

“ My passion, my life. A job I love that has given me a lot, but has also made me give a lot. “

And I could go on and on with more examples but I am sure you can sense and feel just how much the teachers care about their students. And despite the challenges faced over the course of this year, their purpose has been unwavering, many would say, intensified and strengthened.

I have been fortunate to live and work in several countries around the world, including 9 years in the United Arab Emirates, Dubai to be precise. Whilst living there I became fascinated by all the tall skyscrapers that that have been built over the years, none more so than the world famous Burj Khalifa standing at an incredible 828m tall, currently the world´s tallest building.

I would often stand mouth open wide, staring up at these tall buildings and muttering the words, “wow” asking myself many questions as my curiosity ran into overdrive. The most important question was always however: Who designed this and why? What was the PURPOSE?

In the case of Uruguay, before arriving, I found out that the tallest building is the Telecommunications Tower, also known as the Antel Tower, which stands at a height of 157m tall.

Form 6, you too are like these tall skyscrapers but are by no means the finished article yet. You are indeed ‘a work in progress’….And I say that with the greatest possible sincerity.

Both of these buildings are an architect’s dream; complex in design, tall, strong, elegant and admired by all. These buildings didn’t just spring up overnight however. In both cases they took 5 -6 years to construct, about the same amount of time that it has taken you to move through from Form 1 to Form 6.

They were also years in the making, a lot of time, effort and planning went into their development. Each one started as an architect´s blueprint, then became reality. In the same way, you each have a genetic blueprint, unique in design. You will all grow to different heights and your design make up will lead you down different paths in the future, but what is most important is that at your core will lie good strong, solid foundations.

The strong foundations have indeed been laid over the last several years in Junior, whether it was by some of the wonderful teachers we have here at The British Schools, or perhaps at a previous school in the case of a few of you. THEY HAVE BUILT YOU UP TO WHERE YOU STAND TODAY.

Now I can’t promise that you will grow to be as tall and strong as these two skyscrapers, but what I can promise you, is that if you continue to embody the Learner Profile and Attitudes in everything you do during your time at this school, then you will become somebody who is admired by others for your strong core values, your layer upon layer (show hand gestures) of knowledge, skills and understanding and someone that others will stand back in awe of and say “ WOW!”

Form 6. I am extremely proud to have got to know you and been part of your learning journey during the course of this year and I sincerely wish you all the very best in Year 1.

Senior will be an enriched environment for receiving you all.

This just leaves me with the pleasure of wishing you all happy holidays. Stay safe, be happy and I look forward to welcoming you back in February 2022 for the start of next academic year.

 

Rocío Piana's speech

Good morning, ladies and gentlemen, students and teachers, my name is Rocío Piana and I'm going to tell you a little bit about my journey through Junior school. It started back in 2014, but my family’s journey in the British Schools began more than 100 years ago, in 1920, when my great grandfather first attended the school, my grandfather followed his steps, and so did both my parents.

We started this adventure at the Early Year Center, very young and willing to learn. At the beginning, teachers would only speak to us in English, and little by little without realizing it, it became natural for us. Through games, songs and books we’ve learned not only academic knowledge but also important values. 

As the years went by, the school provided us with different courses covering different areas from Drama and Choreography, to Math and Science, giving us a broad spectrum of opportunities. Some unforgettable memories that I'm sure everyone is going to relate to, are the picnics and end of year plays, non-uniform days, school trips, bake sales and Prince Edward's visit, among others. And I’m sure of one thing, that nobody is going to forget the Cross Country!

 Another thing that I will like to mention is the amazing staff that has guided and supported us throughout this wonderful journey.

The British Schools is a place where you grow, you make mistakes, you learn from them. You become stronger and wiser. You make friends. It’s a community, a safe place, it’s a family, our second home. We’ve learned a lot during these 8 years thanks to wonderful teachers.

 We’ve always dreamed of going to Senior School, but now, when the time has finally come, we don’t want to leave.  Thank you and see you soon.

 

Kiril Svetogorski's speech

Buenos días a todos,  

 Al entrar a Form 6 muchos pensamos que este año sólo se trataba del Egreso, sin embargo fue mucho más que eso. 

Fue un año único y especial ya que nos encontramos ante diferentes desafíos que nos llevaron a poner en juego nuestros talentos y capacidades, crecer y ser mejores personas.

Vivimos nuevamente la situación de pandemia, lo que nos llevó a continuar desarrollando habilidades para aprender en distintos escenarios: el virtual y el presencial. Y otra vez, junto con el trabajo de nuestros maestros, pudimos superar este desafío y salir fortalecidos. 

En las distintas unidades desarrolladas en el año, adquirimos herramientas que nos permitieron mejorar las habilidades que aprendimos a lo largo del Junior. Como por ejemplo, las habilidades de comunicación que pusimos en práctica en el proyecto Booktuber en el que tanto nos divertimos recomendando nuestros libros favoritos. También, cuando indagamos sobre el origen  de nuestras familias y conocimos sus historias a partir del intercambio con nuestros padres, tíos y  abuelos. Muchos nos sorprendimos y empatizamos a partir de los relatos que nos contaron. 

Durante el año nos fuimos preparando para el liceo: estudiamos con mayor profundidad, aprendimos a organizar mejor nuestros tiempos y a ser más independientes y responsables. 

Pero en especial, aprendimos a valorar este último año en Junior que nos permite cerrar una etapa inolvidable y comenzar una nueva, llena de expectativas y cambios.

Ahora queremos darles un mensaje a los alumnos de F5. Al principio todos le teníamos miedo al Egreso pero, aunque hayan escuchado esto muchas veces y estoy seguro que lo seguirán escuchando, estén seguros que con su esfuerzo y la preparación de las maestras este desafío también es posible de superar.

Valoren cada momento en Junior, en las clases, en los recreos, a los maestros y a los compañeros, que serán quienes los acompañarán en Secundaria y en la vida. 

Por último, queremos agradecer a quienes nos han acompañado en esta hermosa etapa, a todos los que trabajan en el colegio, al staff, a los profesores, a la dirección y en especial a nuestras familias por apoyarnos siempre y brindarnos la oportunidad de pertenecer a la gran y querida comunidad de The British Schools. 

Gracias.

 

 

 

 

  • Published in Junior
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