Halloween @ SAS

We woke on a very rainy Halloween morning.

Mario, Luigi and I got dressed and made our way to work. Blake had a Halloween party with his grade level.  We had a whole school parade.  It was a great day.

The rain has mostly cleared and soon it is time to get ready for trick or treating.

Happy Halloween!

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Halloween Preview

5 sleeps til trick or treating.

Allow me to introduce you to Mario and Luigi.



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APAC Opening Ceremonies

APAC has come and gone in a whirlwind and I forgot to post these photos.

As a school we welcome all the new teams. A few kids from each grade level were chosen to carry signs in front of each of the visiting rugby teams. It was very sweet. The host teams walk onto the track last. One lucky little man got to walk with the Pudong rugby girls and their coach.

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APAC Champs!

SAS Pudong hosted the APAC Rugby Championships this weekend. It was glorious! Warm, clean air, blue skies….amazing. Our Pudong Eagles played strong all week and made it to the championship game against the ISB Dragons.

Our girls dominated.  You can only see one half of the scoreboard in this picture, but our side says 19.  We slayed the Dragon.

Scotty and Dave run out to meet the girls after the last whistle.  Big, happy smiles all round.

IMG_3173 - Version 2 The girls do one last amazing cheer for the fans.IMG_3201 Then they smother Scott and Dave in a massive hug.IMG_3207 We’re number one!IMG_3212Great group of girls, great coaches, great game, great sport, great week!

We’re so proud of you Scotty!

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Slack Line

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Fun at Nature Night

Blake enjoyed making a pet rock and origami boats.  He visited Mad Science stations and played with Imagination Playground blocks.  He loved doing a nature photography scavenger hunt and floating his boats in the fountain.  He had a blast rock climbing (which is where I took most of my photos.)



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The Eagle’s Nest

Four years ago Scott talked to our then Principal Sacha about turning an unused concrete pad in our school to a natural play area.

Yesterday we had the ribbon cutting ceremony for the new SAS Eagles Nest Outdoor Learning Laboratory. It was a great moment.

It’s been a long 4 years with many ups and downs. Money was raised, money was taken away, people committed and people backed out.

The one thing that never wavered was Scott. He pushed and planned, wrote grant proposals, begged for money, established committees and a dealt with a zillion other details both tiny and massive. Yesterday it all came together in a beautiful celebration called Nature Night.

Here are a few pics.

The ribbon waiting to be cut.

IMG_2695 Scott was presented with a tree for his vision and hard work.IMG_2732Here are the committee members still at SAS.  We missed Preeti Happer and Sarah Toa and Simone Loftus.IMG_2776

After the ribbon cutting ceremony and the formal induction ceremony there were fun activities all over the school for kids and their parents to enjoy.


The Story of The Nature Reserve: An Outdoor Learning Laboratory

by Emmy David

“Well, because I knew it was good, and I knew it was right”.

That was the response that Mr. Hossack gave to a group of third grade students who asked him how he kept committed to a vision of the Nature Reserve after facing many obstacles.

It is that perseverance many at Shanghai American School possess when committed to making each and every space of our school “good and right”.

5 years ago no one could have imagined that a lonely tree in a cement courtyard would now be the focal point and first impression when visitors, students, teachers, and parents enter our school. No one would have thought a space that was designated for nothing other than a pass-through could now be a place where learning of an entirely different nature would take place…yes the pun was definitely intended!

It was within that 5 years Mr. Hossack and few other committed volunteers began to wonder about exciting possibilities for this courtyard. They began to dream on paper, stretch the limits of even their own imaginations, and seek the resources they needed to make it all a reality. Along the way, the project faced many obstacles and frustrations – at times even being placed firmly on the back burner. However, teaching to a mission that demands commitment, compassion, integrity, and courage is best done through living it right in front of our students.

As the Nature Reserve continues to grow, bloom, blossom, seed, and evolve we can be sure that it will continue to inspire in all of our students a lifelong passion for learning, a commitment to act with integrity and compassion, and the courage to live their dreams.


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Christmas Lists

Blake doesn’t quite have the hang of Christmas lists.  We don’t live near stores, we don’t see commercials and for the most part we only shop twice a year,  in the summer and at Christmas.  And when we do shop, most of the things we buy are things like an 8 month supply of toothpaste or enough Kraft dinner to see us through til summer.

So Blake’s Christmas list looks like this.

1.  Some Pokemon cards.  Maybe 3.  No wait, 5.

2.  Snow.  Lots of it.

3.  He wants to have saved enough money from his allowance to buy him and Erin a present at a real toy store.

4.  He wants to see his cousins, all his cousins, at the same time.


He doesn’t get Christmas lists, and I am okay with that.

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Homework – UGH

A big part of me was dreading being the parent of a first grader mostly because of homework.  I loved having no homework in Kinder and PreK, and I was very anxious about grade 1 homework expectations.  Neither Scott and I see a lot of value in homework, particularly some of the busywork homework assignments we’ve seen.  Reading, yes!  I can get behind reading, and listening to stories, also awesome! but the rest is mostly crap.  And we have stacks of research showing the value of after school play vs homework, but I digress.

Because the truth is I had nothing to worry about.  First grade homework at SAS is a breath of fresh air!!  Each month Blake comes home with a grid full of fun and amazing activities to choose from each Monday and Wednesday night.  As he chooses, we mark of the spots and fill in a small form that goes to and from school.  So far we have gone on a nature walk, baked cookies, played board games, watched the Lunar Eclipse together, drawn cool pictures and more! As homework!!  I am a happy momma!

On Monday Blake chose words in shaving cream.  He wanted to practice days of the week, so we did.

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Love this boy…

I was teaching a lesson outside today and look what popped up in my camera lens.IMG_2595 IMG_2599

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