Author Archives: Mr. Kearney

That’s a wrap for 2018/19 – Thank you and Happy Holidays Everyone!

Dear Parents and Children,


And that’s a wrap! I can’t believe the year is finished. Time has flown by. Well done to all members of the Year 2/3 Johannesburg class for all of their hard work throughout the year. Everyone was blown away by their poetry and animations in the final assembly today. I’m sure the students will enjoy perusing their yearbooks and thinking fondly of the memories, friends and work that they have made this year. It has been a most productive year and I have enjoyed being their teacher. I look forward to starting the new academic year on August 26 after an enjoyable summer break.  Please enjoy these pictures of your child enjoying this last week at HFS, the highlight of which was the trip to HHI arts center to watch Toy Story 4 Thank you to the PTA for making that event possible. The Pizza-Movie Day was a real treat and a fantastic way to end the year. Happy Holidays Everyone!

Mr. Kearney


Week 9 News Update and Spelling

Spelling Year 2: Syllable rhythm motion camera focus live page got earth need

Spelling Year 3: Syllable rhythm motion camera focus subject animation blurry photograph profit

Dear Parents and Children,

We have completed the last full week of teaching for the year and we have been busy in the year 2/3 Johannesburg class. Firstly, thank you to the parents who came to our open day. I am glad that you took advantage of the opportunity to come and see the teaching and learning taking place at HFS.


In IPC this week we had fun with photography in our “Say Cheese” learning unit. The students learned about stop motion animation and showed great patience and focus, working hard making short animations using magnets and drawings. In ICT studies this week the students learned how to use Gimp photo editing software and video editing for their animations.






In English we looked at poems by Benjamin Zephaniah, understanding rhythm and syllables. We also learned that sometimes poets make mistakes on purpose in their poems to help the rhyme, rhythm or message. The students practiced reciting poems with expression and feeling.

In Math we learned how to measure the perimeter and area o since this is advanced work. f regular and irregular shapes by counting the blocks or multiplying the length and width.  I am impressed with the student’s calculation abilities. We learned about our heart rate in P.E. and how it goes up when we are active and why this is important for our bodies. All in all, a full week of learning.



Today your child will receive their term 3 progress reports. Please review the report and complete the parent section of the report to bring to the parent teacher conferences on Wednesday 26 June. The interview schedule is up at the office. Please fill in your desired time to ensure that you have a chance to meet with me. The interviews will run from 11:30 until 4:30 pm. I look forward to seeing you there.

That is all for this week. Have a great weekend. More…

Week 8 Update and Spelling

Spelling Year 2: unit iron degrees millimetre millilitre head above kind began almost

Spelling Year 3: unit iron degrees millimetre millilitre parallel area perimeter research timeline

Dear Parents and Children,

We are in the final few weeks of term 3 and we have been busy. We completed our GL assessments and the students did very well. You will see their reports at the parent/teacher conferences later this month.


This week we completed our “Scavengers and Settlers” unit by researching Stonehenge and leading out of the Bronze age into the Iron age. We made models of Stonehenge and created our Prehistoric timelines of the different periods. We ended off the unit by making our own fossils similar to the ones that we “dug out” at the beginning of the unit. It has been a fun process of learning and discovery about our early history.




In English we started looking at the work of dub-poet and reggae singer Benjamin Zephaniah, most notably his poem “For Word”. We will look at more of his work next week. In our sentence work we reviewed how comma’s can hilariously change meaning: “Let’s eat Reyansh” is very different to “Let’s eat, Reyansh” 🙂

In Math the students reviewed all they know about measurement; from length to height, capacity, weight, temperature, time, money and angles –  they had fun working in groups measuring things around the classroom, understanding the different tools and units of measurement.



In P.E. we continued developing our volleyball skills as the students practiced hitting balls to each other and keeping them in the air. The then progressed to hitting them over a net. The weather was ideal for games in the sun.



A full, fun week it has been. That is all for this update. Have a wonderful weekend.

Mr. Kearney


Week 7 Update and Spelling

Spelling Year 2: angle acute obtuse bronze artefact side boy animals enough sometimes

Spelling Year 3: angle acute obtuse bronze artefact paragraph perpendicular interior protractor serious

Dear Parents and Children,


We have had a full week of learning and discovery in the year 2/3 Johannesburg class and the students have outdone themselves in their productivity. It is a welcome relief to get back to regular classes after last week’s disruptions.

We continued our IPC unit on “Scavengers and Settlers” by ending our section on the stone age by attempting to make paintings on stone with tool similar to early man after researching cave-paintings with an online virtual tour of the Lascaux Caves in France. We moved on from the Stone age and researched artefacts from the Bronze age. The students got to play at being archaeologists as they guessed what the artefacts were and what they were used for.




In English we continued making non-chronological reports, this time about our classmates using only facts. The family trees that they did for homework came in handy for this task. The students also demonstrated cross-curricular learning by making non-chronological reports about the Stone age. In grammar we learned that paragraphs are 3 or more sentences grouped together about one subject and we applied this to our report writing. In ICT the students had to type their yearbook messages and email them to me and  will consolidate their learning about non-chronological reports and the Bronze age and create slideshow presentations that I can’t wait to see.



In Math we continued our geometry unit on direction and movement by understanding that right angles can be turns as well as angles. We looked for right angles in objects around us and learned about different types of angles and how to measure them using a protractor. We finished off the week and the geometry unit by learning the names and properties of the four different types of triangles, equilateral, isosceles, right-angle and scalene.




We had a lot of fun in the sun in P.E this week as we practiced net and wall games such as “lobster-ball” and badminton. The students are getting quite adept at maintaining consistent volleys in pairs.



All in all, a very busy week. Next week we will have our GL assessments and begin our new English, Math and IPC units on poetry, measurement and photography respectively.

Have a great weekend.

Mr Kearney More…

Week 5 news, Sports Day and Gyeongju trip

Spelling year 2: fossil introduction suffix facts empathy food keep children feet land

Spelling year 3: fossil introduction suffix facts empathy technical hunter carefully interaction gather

Dear Parents and Children,

A full and exciting week has passed us by as we approach the half-way mark for term 3. Today we had our sports day and the students showed excellent athletic ability, teamwork and sportsmanship. The most important thing is that everyone had fun competing in the games and a great day was had by all. Well done to those who won prizes. They were definitely well deserved. Thank you to the PTA for the delectable treats for our hard-working athletes.



In Class this week we continued with our learning on the stone age. The students researched how people from the stone age caught and captured food and made clothes as well as looking at how cave paintings were made. We did a curricular crossover into literacy and ICT and read the book “Ug; Boy genius of the stone age” on our tablets to see the challenges of daily life that people of the stone age had to endure.



In English grammar we learned about suffixes and how they change the meaning of a word and we started our unit on non-chronological reports by making presentations about fossils and planned our presentations about our class mates. In Math we reviewed multiplication word problems and applied the grid method to solving these. We also began our geometry unit looking at understanding right angles and clockwise and anticlockwise turns. We will continue this next week.


A full week of learning and an enjoyable day on the field. Next week will be a short week with our planned trip to the Gyeongju Bird Park and Botanical gardens on Thursday 30 May. Please take note of the bus schedule for pick-up and drop-offs for the trip. Thank you to all who have completed the online permission form and submitted the 10 000 Won payment. If you have not done so please complete the form  by clicking here and send the payment to school with your child by no later than Monday 27 May. Thank you for your cooperation in this regard.

That is all for this week. Have a wonderfully sunny weekend.

Mr Kearney


F1/2Y1/2/3 Trip to Gyeongju Bird Park on Thursday 30 May Info and Permission Form.

Dear Parents and Children,

bird park

In linking with our recent IPC learning units “Green Fingers” the F1/2 Year 1/2/3 students will have a school trip to the fantastic Gyeongju Botanical Gardens and Bird Park on Thursday 30 May. It promises to be a fun and rewarding learning experience for our students. Since the Hanmaeum center will be closed for the day it will be a full-day trip returning by 3:30 pm. Please note that since we will not have access to the building on Thursday 30 May the school bus will collect children and proceed directly to the bird park in Gyeongju. It is vital that students are at their respective collection points at least 5 minutes before the bus arrives since, should a child miss the bus, there will be no way to return to collect that child and there will not be anyone in the office to field calls due to restricted access. The School mobile phone number is 010-9742-2945 should you wish to contact us urgently. Please see the list below for your child’s pick-up and drop off point and the time that they should be there.

Gyeongju Bird Park Trip School Bus Schedule

Children who do not usually take the bus to school must be dropped at the Sangteville gate of the old compound by 08:35 am. Below is a picture and Here is a Google Maps link to the Sangteville pick-up location. The bus will drop them off at the same  place by 3:30 pm in the afternoon. There will be no art club on that day.

Sangtevill Stop

Parents must ensure that your child uses the restroom before getting on the bus since the trip to Gyeongju is a little far although we will have a restroom stop if necessary. The cost for the trip is 10 000 Won. Please send that fee to school with your child and complete the online permission form by clicking here by no later than Monday 27 May.  if you do not want want your child to attend the trip they will have to stay at home for the day. Remember to pack only a snack, lunch and water bottle for the day and ensure that your child is wearing their blue HFS  uniform on the day.  Please contact the admin office should you have any queries. Thank you for your support and cooperation with this enjoyable learning endeavor.

Best regards,

Mr. Kearney

Week 4 News and Spelling

Spelling year 2: grid scavenger settler prefix report  going work cloth funny friend

Spelling year 3: grid scavenger settler prefix report prehistoric primary secondary source people

Dear Parents and Children,

What an exciting and eventful week it has been. We were happy to meet wit Dr  Jabal and show him our fantastic school. The students were at their best as he visited our class. We also celebrated Reyansh’ birthday and teachers day and conducted our assembly with a flower show and demonstration of teamwork. We even celebrated International Chicken Dance Day by doing the chicken dance.20190516_134039



In our learning this week we started a new IPC unit, “Scavengers and Settlers”. The students eagerly took to researching and understanding how people lived long ago. In groups the students discussed what things people need to survive. How do we get these things today? They had to think about how people long ago would get these things and survive. What would they use to make these things? We had to pretend to be people in the stone age and scavenge for things to build our house and make clothes.  The students also researched fossils on the internet and then got the opportunity to be archaeologists as we looked at and dug up real fossils, understanding the difference between primary and secondary sources.




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In our English we started planning our “Anthony Browne’ style stories. The students showed great creativity in coming up with characters and how they change as the story develops. In grammar we learned about prefixes and how they change the meaning of a word and we started looking at the features of non-chronological reports for our next unit.

In math we continued practicing our multiplication strategies, refining our skills with the grid method and in P.E we started learning about games involving controlling and hitting balls and other objects to each other in a fixed area and practiced our throwing and catching skills.



I am glad that our plants continue to grow and our self-watering planters were a success and work effectively. I hope the students will continue to care for them in the coming weeks.

That is all for this week. have a great weekend.

Mr Kearney More…

Week 3 Update, Spelling and Green Day

Spelling Year 2: Connective photosynthesis chain process inverse both few those always looked

Spelling Year 3: Connective photosynthesis chain process inverse possess suppose surprise succeed strict

Dear Parents and Children,

It has been a short but productive week jam-packed of exciting learning.

First we were happy to celebrate both Jeremy and Lois’ Birthdays. The whole school signed a card and gathered to wish them a happy Birthday as they watched personalized video messages. we hope they each had a special day



Our plants are growing nicely thanks to the care and nurturing that the students are giving them. In groups the students had to research different subjects relating to plants and create a Powerpoint slideshow for our upcoming assembly on Monday. They have made exceptional presentations ranging from photosynthesis and life-cycles to plants around the world. Join us on Monday at 1:35 pm for their Assembly. They should practice their “Recycle Song” lyrics. You can get them by clicking here. They rounded off the IPC unit “Green Fingers”by building a self- watering planter from recycled plastic bottles.

20190508_090747 20190510_110951



In English we looked at the Anthony Browne story “Gorilla” and learned about coordinating connectives “and”, “but” and “or” for our grammar. We also discussed the school values, why they are important and what they mean to us. The students created wonderful spray-diagrams illustrating their understanding of the HFS core values. In Math we went further with our multiplication and division skills by creating “Halving Chains”. The students also learned about using the grid method for multiplication.

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We had a fantastic time on our “Green Day” trip to clean up Daewangam Park today. I am so proud that the students worked so hard collecting litter from that beautiful area that we all enjoy. It was a lot of walking but an enjoyable time was had by all. they definitely earned their ice cream treats.


I am pleased that the students ordered so many tickets for the Spring Day. I look forward to seeing them there tomorrow.

Due to the Daewangam park cleanup taking a little longer than expected homework will be sent out on Monday. Have a great weekend and I will see you at the PTA Spring Day.

Mr Kearney


Week 2 update and Plastic bottle for Science Project

Spelling Year 2: climate herb blurb leftover remainder sound below saw something thought

Spelling Year 3: climate herb blurb leftover remainder popular potatoes position parade record

Dear Parents and children,

We have completed our second week of term 3 and I am happy to report that the year 2/3 Johannesburg class is taking advantage of the wonderful Spring weather to grow our plants, herbs and beans. The students are diligently nurturing their plants and monitoring their growth with daily record keeping. We researched the life cycle of a plant and how plants get food through photosynthesis. We also examined different herbs to understand the different uses for plants. I am looking forward to seeing the student’s plants bud and flower in the coming weeks.


Next week we will be making devices for our plants using plastic bottles. Please send a small plastic bottle with your child to school similar to the one pictured below so that they may complete the project.


In English we continued looking at the work of Anthony Browne, with a special focus on his style of writing and drawing and how he uses different techniques to convey emotion. We also learned about opposite adjectives  and how to use a thesaurus to help with our writing. The trip to the art gallery was a special treat where we could see a variety of different children’s authors styles on display.



In Math we continued learning about doubling and halving even numbers extending our understanding to remainders. We completed fun and challenging math riddles to round of the week’s learning. I hope they enjoy completing a few more for homework.


That is all for this week. Please have a wonderful extended weekend with your families on Children’s day filled with sunshine and delight.

Mr. Kearney More…

Week one Welcome Back!

Dear Parents and Children,

It’s great to be back after a wonderful Spring break. We have had a full week of fun and learning in the Year 2/3 Johannesburg class, much of it spent getting our hands dirty as we began planting our seedlings for our “Green Fingers” Unit in IPC. The students filled out “Adoption “certificates” promising to care for their new plants which they had to also name. I look forward to seeing them grow.



They also learned about different plants from around the world and the different climate zones that plants grow in. We took advantage of our natural surroundings exploring which plants growing the most in our area and doing a tally and bar chart to represent our findings. The students are excited about this new unit and I look forward to getting close to nature in the coming weeks as we learn more about plants and the environment.



In English we began our unit on “Stories from significant authors by looking at Anthony Browne’s work. We looked at the similarities in a few of his stories and learned how to write a blurb to entice us to read one.


In Math we practiced our mental math skills with an addition and subtraction test. We will complete one every week as the students see their own progress as they improve on their scores and times. We also learned about halving and doubling single and double-digit numbers, understanding that odd numbers can be doubled but not easily halved.

In P.E. we started learning catching and fleeing activities learning two new games – “Giants, elves and wizards” and “Boats and Oceans” as the students looked at different strategies for catching and fleeing. They certainly worked up a sweat in the gymnasium as the weather is getting warmer.

All in all, a full week and a great start to the new term. Please take note of the term 3 curriculum overview for your review in the class information section.

Mr. Kearney More…