Author - EXE

Intermediate Saigon Mathematics Competition

Over the weekend AIS had two teams participate in the Intermediate Saigon Mathematics Competition.  Well done to all students on their participation.  By participating in competitions like this students’ practise and develop problem solving skills.  Special congratulations must go to the team of Kei IKEDA (year 9), Thanh TRAN (year 10), Nguyen TRAN (year 10) and Hyeon Jun KIM (year 10), they placed 3rd overall out of 16 teams. Their best result in the Competition was 2nd in the Individual Competition round against very competent opposition. Once again this is a commendable result for AIS, these are the best Intermediate results in the school’s history until the guidance and tuition of Mr David Gakowski. A very big congratulations to David and his Intermediate Maths Competition team.


Student Council

The Student Council is a group of students who have been elected by our peers to represent and be their voice in AIS for the academic year 2016-2017. The council consists of 5 executives, 28 tutor group representatives and our liaison teacher Mr Clark.

The Student Council helps the student body collaborate and facilitate discussions on interests, ideas and concerns within our school and its community. We aim to host events projects and fundraisers frequently,and push for student involvement within the school. All in all we wish to make the school year an even more enjoyable experience than it already is at this point.

For the academic year of 2016-2017 the Student Council has two predominant goals that we wish to achieve.

First, we are prioritizing the voice of the student body, encouraging students to speak out and making sure that their voice is heard.

Second, we are actively encouraging student involvement in the school community, through the organisation of and participation in fundraising activities with our charity partner Loreto.

It has been an excellent year so far and we look forward to working with all students to make it even better.

Student Council Executive Committee


AIS students tops the world

AIS is delighted to announce that one of our Year 12 students, Nguyen Giang Tien Tran, has gained a 2016 Outstanding Cambridge Learner Award – Top of the World in IGCSE Additional Mathematics.

In the June 2016 CIE examination session, as a Year 11 student, Tien Tran sat IGCSE examinations. She did superbly well, achieving an A grade in Economics and A* grades in Chemistry, Physics and Additional Mathematics. To come top of the world in Additional Mathematics is a truly outstanding achievement. This means that Tien scored the highest mark in the world out of all of the candidates that sat the June 2016 IGCSE examination in Additional Mathematics. This achievement is even more noteworthy due to the fact that Additional Mathematics is a subject focused solely on Pure Mathematics and is designed as an extension course to be studied by only the most able mathematicians.

Nguyen Giang Tien Tran with Executive Principal Dr Roderick Crouch and Deputy Head-Secondary Mr Mark Vella

Nguyen Giang Tien Tran with
Executive Principal Dr Roderick Crouch and Deputy Head-Secondary Mr Mark Vella

The School is very proud of Tien. Her achievement is a testimony not only to her undoubted ability but also to her hard work, commitment and determination to succeed, as well as the expertise and dedication of her teachers, and the support of her family and friends.

Tien shared a few tips about how to prepare for and do well in exams. “It is very important to build up a solid relationship with your teachers. They are there to help you to do your best, so give them something to work with. Let them know how you are doing and ask how you can improve on your current position”. Tien believes it is important to “pay attention in class and ask questions to avoid last minute, indiscriminate cramming. And most important of all, especially for Mathematics, is to do practice papers. Then give it your best shot in the exams. You have worked very hard and the exam will be over in three hours. So keep calm and carry on!”

This year Tien is completing the first year of the IB Diploma. She has set herself a demanding programme. It comes as no surprise that she is studying Higher Level (HL) Mathematics. She also opted for HL English A Literature, Chemistry and Economics, as well as Standard Level Physics and French Ab Initio. Ultimately it is Tien’s desire to study Veterinary Science at the University of Sydney.

The school wishes Tien all the best for her future studies, both at AIS and in the years ahead.


Year 12 Diploma Day

Year 12 students have been initiated into the wonderful world of the IB Diploma Programme during two recent days. The Year 12 Diploma Day was on 30 August. Students took part in a team-building exercise (and the totems that they made are still visible in A309) and were introduced to the IB, the Diploma programme and the IB Learner Profile. They also attended an Australian universities fair and sessions on the EE and on CAS. Saturday 10 September saw almost all the Year 12s at school for a fantastic CAS Day. They worked in groups through a complete CAS activity from proposal, planning, the experience itself and then reflecting upon it. The (hilarious) videos that they made can be seen on YouTube.

A big thank you to all the staff who helped to run these events but especially to our wonderful Year 12s!


Year 11 Vietnamese Movie Trip

On 9 September 2016, Year 11 Vietnamese Language and Literature classes made their very first field trip of the academic year to BHD Cinema at Vincom Thao Dien.  The aim of the trip was to compare and contrast the movie Tam Cam: The Untold Story and the Vietnamese cinderella-like Tam Cam as a post-reading activity of Vietnamese folk tales. The movie itself that gave the audience a feast for the eyes and a treat for the ears. 


As one of the students said,

I was impressed.  The sets, especially the scenery is magnificent with professional cinematography using flycams.  Words fail me describing the grandness of mountains and palaces.  Moreover, the costumes for actresses are respectfully inspired from Vietnamese traditional clothing with some beautifully modernised touches and spices.

It is obvious that Ngo Thanh Van, the director and producer of the movie, was trying to make the best Vietnamese movie of which all Vietnamese can be proud.  I hope that the film industry of Vietnam will make more progress in producing movies with modern special effects but also keep the traditions of Vietnam in every movie in the future.” – LE Hoang Minh An, Year 11


Year 7 special day

On Wednesday, 7 September all Year 7 students came off normal timetable for a day of activities focusing on key IT Skills and Digital Citizenship, led by the Deputy Principal, Mr Mark Vella.

The first session of the day focused on equipping Year 7 students with some essential IT skills involving setting up and organising folders and the creation and effective formatting of Word Documents. The theme of the second session was what it means to be a digital citizen and gaining an understanding of the concept of our digital footprint. School Prefects did a great job of assisting with the group discussions and activities. To break up what was a long session the students enjoyed a boisterous game of ‘Number Crash‘ which was followed by an ‘Elves, Giants, and Wizard‘ tournament. The final session after lunch saw students collaborating in small groups to create presentations to share and communicate their newfound knowledge. The students worked enthusiastically to produce Powerpoint presentations, video clips, posters (both digital and on paper), and even the script for a short play.


Senior School House Captains

On Monday, 5 September 2016, secondary students voted for their 2016/17 House Captains. This year a record number of students applied with some outstanding applicants from both the Middle and Senior school. The quality of the speeches was exceptional showing the depth of student leadership currently at AIS. There were some extremely close results from the voting ballots. Congratulations to the following 2016/17 House Captains:

Griffin –  DINH Duc Hieu, WALLER Hayley, TRAN Gia Bao, NGUYEN Thai Nhu Quynh (Lea)

Pegasus – TRAN Hien (Austin), NGUYEN Phuong Khanh, ESTACION Zyle, SYVERSTEN Sylvia

Phoenix – HIROTA Shosei, VU Hoang Thanh Trang, NOCETO Jean Mark, DAO Mai Chi

Sphinx – TRAN Quang Nam (Natan), NGUYEN Hoang Ngoc Linh, VAN Duy Lam (Larry), TRAN Phuong Hoang

The first task for the House Captains is to lead their respective houses towards the prestigious house dance competition that will take place on Friday, 20 September 2016. A report on that competition will be in the next newsletter.


Year 2 and the Dentist

Year 2 students have been learning about looking after themselves and the choices that can lead to having balanced lifestyles. They have explored different factors that contribute to being healthy, such as food, hygiene, exercise, friendships and safety. On 14 September, Dr Guiettier from Starlight Dental Clinic visited the children at Thao Dien. Dr Guettier explained the importance of dental hygiene and showed the students how to take care of their teeth. Each child received a pack with a new toothbrush and toothpaste. According to many parents, the children used the pack to teach their family members the proper way of brushing teeth. Great work Year 2!

Westcoast International Dental Clinic Ho Chi Minh City Thao Dien
27 Nguyen Ba Lan, Thao Dien, District 2, HCMC


Moon Festival

You have to taste a culture to understand it.” – Deborah Cater

Our Moon Festival on Wednesday 14 and Thursday 15 September 2016 was one of these learning opportunities where we as a dynamic multi-national community gained a deeper understanding about Vietnamese customs and its culture.

The Festival was celebrated over two nights, one for each primary school. The exciting nights began with an impressive and rapturous traditional “Tết Trung Thu” (Moon Festival) drum beating performance. The AIS Primary community experienced a fabulously entertaining evening, with a myriad of Vietnamese traditional songs, dancing performances and colourful decorations. It was amazing to see how well our students worked together and performed confidently on the stage in front of over 300 family members and friends each evening. This was a beautiful joint effort to mark our 10th annual Moon Festival concert.

After many charming performances, everyone took part in a bright and colourful lantern parade. Children and their parents were then treated to a spectacular, expressive and hilarious Dragon Dance and Lion Dance.

Through the participation of students in VLC lessons and their active involvement in our diverse Vietnamese traditional festivals, the understanding of the Vietnamese culture has been considerably broadened and strengthened with our students from all around the world.  In turn, they are better able to enjoy and appreciate the cultural experience on offer whilst living here in Viet Nam.


An audience with the CEO of ANZ bank, Dennis Hussey

Part of the University of Technology Sydney (UTS) CEO chat series

an-audience-with-the-ceo-of-anz-bank-dennis-husseyOn the 8 September, ANZ bank hosted top students from around the city at their offices in District 7. The students were selected through an essay competition and AIS was well represented with four students; Tech Hng Eng (Y12), You Jin Lee (Y12), Khanh Linh Tran (Y13) and Hyeon Ho Lee (Y13).

The morning consisted of a presentation by the CEO around the issue of leadership followed by a question and answer session where the students posed some tough and insightful questions particularly around the issue of corporate responsibility and community service and how does an expat leader interact meaningfully with local workers.

This was a fantastic opportunity for our students to get a first-hand experience of interacting with top business leaders and was one that they seized with both hands, representing themselves and the greater AIS student body admirably.