March 2018 archive

Have a great Spring Break!

Dear Parents and Families of UAS Elementary School,

Have a wonderful Spring Break!!!!  We at UAS wish you all a restful, fun-filled and family time vacation.  We will see you all when students return on Sunday, April 8.

A  special Thank You goes out to UAS’s KG1 Teacher Team, KG2 Teacher Team and Ms. Crystal Hana, EY Coordinator, for their outstanding Mother Day Celebration program!  The students sang wonderfully, the student-to-Mom gifts were cherishable and the recognition of Moms special relationships with their children was memorable.

Congratulations to ES’s group of Grade 2 students who performed in UAS’s Wizard of Oz…a great performance was completed by all our students!!

Thanks to PTSO for a very informative and insightful PTSO meeting on March 21st.  The two speakers provided great information…please come and join the next PTSO meeting in April!

Principal Coffee

Please see the attached FAQs from question submitted at the last Coffee.  If any additional questions or clarity needed, please email David Dorn ( for additional information to be added to the FAQs.     FAQs

The next Principal’s Coffee will be held on Wednesday, April 18, from 8am-9am in the ES Library.  Topics will be school lunch, school-wide behavioral reinforcement plan, parent school-home communication needs, and the PYP program.  See ya all there!

Ramadan Schedule

The Ramadan school day timing have been finalized.  The school day will begin at 8am and end at 1pm for all grades, Pre K through Grade 12.  The actual days of the Ramadan schedule will be published later.

All UAS transport students will be able to ride buses home with buses departing UAS at approximately 1:15pm.  Early Years (Pre K – KG1) who wish to pick-up their child from school, may do so at the normal dismissal time of 12:45pm.

Student Led Conferences

Student Led Conferences will be held on Wednesday, April 25th, and Thursday April 26th.  The intent of these student-family conferences is for the student to showcase the learning that has taken place over the school year.  The goal is for the parent and student to have an active conversation which celebrates the student’s learning experience to date. It is not a time for parent-teacher talk, rather student-parent dialog.  The children very much enjoy sharing their school experience with the parents…it is a unique intimate experience for both child and parent.

More information to include times, sign-up process, etc. will be sent to families the week of April 8th (after Spring Break).  More to come…..

Update on Arabic Staffing for Grades 1, 2 and 3

Ms. Rima and Mr. Mahmoud will be assuming teaching elementary Arabic classes in lieu of the recent substitute teacher. Ms. Rima and Mr. Mahmoud’s teaching skills and knowledge of the Arabic curriculum will be an enhancement to the program.

PYP Exhibition Corner – PYP Coordinator Ms. Sambola

We are very excited to announce that the 2018 UAS PYP Exhibition will be held at Dubai Festival City Mall! We are looking forward to hosting the Exhibition at this new venue where students will be able to share their projects with a larger audience. Please `mark these dates on your calendar and plan to visit and support the grade 5 students and their learning.

  • Sunday, May 6 from 6:00pm – 7:30pm
  • Monday, May 7 from 8:30 am – 2:00 pm

Blog for week of March 18 – last week of school before Spring Break

Dear Parents, Families and Students of UAS Elementary School,

Spring Break

It is the week before our 2 week vacation for Spring Break!  The vacation begins this Thursday, March 22nd at 12:00 noon…this is an early dismissal day.  All students, Pre K through Grade 12 will be dismissed at noon on Thursday.  School will resume on Sunday, April 8. UAS wishes a fun and relaxing vacation for all families…a last hurrah before the warm weather sets in within Dubai!

Principal’s Coffee

Last Wednesday the monthly Principal Coffee was held with many parents in attendance.  The meeting focussed on parental input as to their child’s needs for both curricular and co-curricular programming plus the nutritional needs of their children.  Please read the attached minutes of the feedback session; please note the color blue are comments that were quite common amongst all seven groups.

Principal Coffee Parental Input

The ES administrative team will combine the parent input along with feedback from grade 4 & 5 students and ES faculty to design the 2018-2019 daily schedule.  A schedule’s purpose is utilize the resource of time to accomplish the academic mission of the school. Our mission at UAS is to optimize the conditions of learning for all students!

The next Principal’s Coffee, Wednesday, April 18, will focus on a positive school-wide behavioral management plan; parental input on cafeteria foods and communication needs of families from the school.  See you all then!!

PYP Exhibition Corner

We are proud to say that our grade 5 students have successfully begun their PYP Exhibition journey. They have selected topics, gotten to know their group members, and received their mentor assignments. This week they will meet their mentors, narrow the focus within their topic, and begin to research their topic using a variety of sources. If you have an opportunity, talk with a grade 5 student about this learning experience and encourage them to keep working hard.

Mother Tongue Book Drive

Ms. O’Reilly (KG2 teacher) is organizing a Mother Tongue Book Drive to enhance our literature holdings within our students’ mother tongue language.

Please read the Book Drive link for more information.

Upcoming Events

    • Monday, March 19 Grade 5 musical performance in MPH 8:30 – 9:30 am
    • Wednesday, March 21, KG1 Mother’s Day performance at 8:00 am in cafeteria
    • Thursday, March 22, KG2 Mother’s Day performance at 8:00 am in cafeteria
    • UAS Theater, “Wizard of Oz” Sunday, Monday, and Wednesday of this week
    • Student Led Conferences – April 25 and 26…scheduling information to be forthcoming
    • UAS Elementary School Trimester 2 Progress Reports posted on Tuesday, April 10



Blog for Week of March 11 – Principal Coffee on March 14 – 8-9 am

Dear Families of UAS Elementary School,

Thank you all for your support during last week Thursday’s favorite Book Character Parade! How fun it was to see the children dressed up as their favorite book character! In addition to the parade, our students had numerous activities last week to Celebrate Book Week…

Upcoming Events

Principal’s Coffee – Wednesday, March 14, 8-9 a.m. in ES Library


  • Specials Schedule for 18-19 School Year – The ES Administrative Team has very clearly heard parent and student concerns about this year’s “4 week block schedule” for specials.  Thus, a change in schedule will occur for the next school year.  At this meeting the Administrative Team will hear parent thoughts on their child’s needs in relationship to PE, music, art, lunch and recess/snack
  • A student instructional day runs from 7:55 to approximately 3:00.  The following time commitments must be built into the daily student schedule:
    • KHDA Moral Education – 60 minutes per week
    • Arabic Education 40 minutes daily 5 days per week
    • Islamic Education/Reading Club 30-40 minutes either 2 days (80 minutes weekly) or 4 days (120 minutes weekly)  per week
    • Math Curriculum 60 minutes daily
    • Literacy Curriculum 80 minutes daily
    • Specials (art, music or PE) 45 to 50 minutes daily
    • Recess and Lunch/Recess 60 minutes daily
    • PYP (science or social studies) 60 minutes daily
    • Plus the transition times (5 minutes of movement to or from classroom) between classes, recess, etc…
  • Mr. Jones will review and solicit feedback regarding a faculty developed school-wide student behavior reinforcement plan.

Thank you,

David Dorn    David Jones


ASAs and Interactive Reading from Sarah Ghanem

The end of UAS’s season 2 ASA is quickly upon us (see below important dates).  Sarah would like to take this opportunity to thank all the wonderful teachers and outside providers for offering a wide range of engaging and successful activities this year.

There will be no ASA season 3 due to a short time between Spring break and Ramadan.  Plus Ramadan will be 4 weeks during this time period.

ASA Important notes and dates:

  • March 15 ASA season 2  and Interactive Reading will end
  • March 15 last day of scheduled late / ASA buses
  • March 18 ASA season 2 Make up session for only External ASAs Advance Group Tennis, Rhythmic Gymnastics and Easy Peasy coding (as communicated earlier, on that day parents will need to arrange pick up at 4:10pm)


UAS Splash and Dash from Dylan Carter  – Co-Athletic Coordinator/Experiential Learning Coordinator

It’s time for the

UAS Splash & Dash!

We want all our fantastic swimmers and runners to come out on Tuesday April 17th.

The event will take place during the school day.

The Splash & Dash is for any STUDENT, PARENT or TEACHER in Elementary (Grades 2-5), Middle & High School.

You can participate Individually or with a Partner.

Elementary students will SWIM 100m (4 laps in pool) and RUN 800m (2 laps of track).

The cost to participate is 75 AED. Participants receive a T-shirt and Winners receive prizes.

To register for this awesome event, you must sign up by clicking HERE.

The Link can also be found on the UAS website.

Once registered you need to make your payment at UAS Accounts.

Please pay to the SPLASH-DASH Account.

Registration & Payment needs to be completed by Wednesday March 21st at 3pm.

We hope to see lots of students competing and having LOADS OF FUN!

Go Scorpions!


Happy Book Week!


Wow…PTSO put on a FANTASTIC International Day Celebration this past Saturday.  The variety of country booths, the cultural information (not to mention the food) were outstanding.  The entertainment, flag parade and other booths created a strong feeling of community within our UAS family.  Thank you all for attending and thank you PTSO for an outstanding show.

There are several happenings at UAS this week:


To celebrate UAS Book Week, the school will have several authors visiting UAS, all of which would appreciate marketing support for their books.  Terri Allen in particular, as we have to sell at least 30 of her books to cover the cost of her visit.  In addition there are several events and activities occurring for our students.  For more Book Week information please contact Zou Fraser at

Author Schedule is:

Sunday 4th: Stacey Sudlow with KG2

Monday 5th: John Felton with grades 1 & 2

Tuesday 6th: Stacey Sudlow with KG1

Wednesday 7th: Terri Allen with grades 4 & 5

Thursday 8th: Sammy Fongang  grade 3

Other Book Week Activities

  • Daily DEAR time (drop everything and read)
  • Class trips to the Emirates festival of Literature
  • Book Character Dress up day and parade on Thursday, March 8th Parents please come and view the parade beginning at 8:00 am on the elementary recess playground.
  • An “Escape Room”
  • A sandy beach reading area
  • A jungle theme reading area
  • Students may wear their Book Week T Shirts all week

This is the first year that UAS has asked a student to design the T-Shirt for Book Week.  A hearty congratulations to the winner of the competition is Karen El Natour in Grade 8.  A congratulations to the runner-up  Norah Furman in Grade 3.  


March is Music in Our Schools Month!

The UAS Music Teachers will be highlighting our amazing students and staff to promote music throughout the school!

The following is a schedule of  music performances this month…come and join us!

March 1st @ 5:30 pm– Room One rock band performance at Season 2 Athletics Award Night (MPH)

March 7th @ 8 am– 1st Grade Musical “The Day the Crayons Quit” (MPH)

March 8th @ 9 am– Senior Parade accompanied by live tabla drumming (around the school)

March 12th @ 6pm– Grade 11 IB Music Recital (M02/03)

March 15th @ 2 pm– Mission Not Impossible Part II: Awards Assembly (MPH)

March 18,19, 21 @ 6 pm– high school production of “The Wizard of Oz” (MPH)

March 19th @ 8:30 am– 5th Grade Musical “Adventure is Out There”


Counselor  Update

In light of the DAA incident the counselors have posted below the link to the ES Counselor Blog with an informational update about the lessons they are currently doing in grades KG2 – G4.  Ms. Jen recently finished classroom instruction for grade levels 2 through 5 prior to last Wednesday.  Mr. Fields is in the midst of teaching within his classes. The counselors started this unit of information prior to the reported DAA incident, their instruction appears to have been quite timely considering the circumstances.

Here is the counselor blog link:


MAP Assessment Information

Universal American School has just completed their mid year MAP testing session. The MAP assessment is used as a check-in for students and teachers to understand how learning is progressing towards the end-of-year goals. Please review the MAP report with your child and discuss how they are growing in their learning.

When looking at data for students, UAS looks at external and internal data to show a full profile of student learning. The MAP assessment is just one source of the learning profile.  Please contact your child’s classroom teacher if you have further questions about your child’s learning. If you would like more information about how to read the MAP assessment, please visit this presentation shared with earlier with parents or the UAS MAP Resource page.


Principal Coffee, Wednesday, March 14 from 8 am to 9 am in the ES Library


  1. Parental input into the music, physical education and art schedule for 18-19 school year
  2. An information and feedback session regarding a proposed elementary school school-wide management program

Have a great week and thank you for the trust placed with UAS in the education of your children!

David Dorn David Jones