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Dragon Dispatch - March 16, 2012

From the Director

Dear ISB Parents and Colleagues,
By the time you have read this newsletter, I will have completed my opening remarks as CEESA President at the 2012 CEESA Conference in Warsaw, Poland. As the ISB CEESA Teacher Representative, Mrs. Sheila MacGregor – Kovacevic is participating in the conference. Both of us will be sharing our findings from the various workshops with our faculty and the ISB Board of Trustees. Athletics/Activities Director, Mr. Damian Hart is attending the CEESA Athletics/Activities conference which runs concurrent with the CEESA Conference. 
There are a wide range of workshops on offer. The two keynote speakers (Dr. Nancy Love and Dr. Jane Goodall) will inspire and empower us to seek our passions. Dr. Love’s keynote is entitled “Unleashing the Power of Collaborative Inquiry: Connecting the Data to Results” while world-famous research Dr. Goodall’s speech is entitled “Making a Difference: A Morning with Dr. Jane Goodall”. A UN Messenger of Peace, Dame of the British Empire and the subject of countless articles and television programs, Goodall will discuss the current threats facing the planet and her reasons for hope in these complex times.
One workshop of particular interest which I will be attending is entitled “Notepad to IPad: discover a new workflow for the classroom”. As ISB continues its vigorous investigation into whether we should move to a tablet platform for students and teachers, workshop presenter Fons van den Berg will demonstrate the acknowledged power of a tablet learning environment. He will demonstrate how iPads enhance productivity, interactivity, and collaboration through engaging assignments. Workshop participants will explore feature and apps to plan, create, present and share work. Over the course of the past semester, the ISB Technology Taskforce has surveyed faculty members about the strengths and challenges of operating in a laptop v. tablet environment. As we approach the end of the cycle of renewing our laptops for faculty members, it is important that ISB remains a leader in the region in its support of meaningful instructional technology. Information shared at the CEESA Conference may feature in the administration’s proposed next 3 Year Technology Plan which will be an agenda item at the 27 March 2012 meeting of the Board of Trustees.
Bingo is Back
On Friday, March 16 we look forward to another evening of family fun with the numbered balls twirling about in our Bingo machine. Mr. Kelly’s authoritative voice will project the drawn numbers for your Bingo Card. Thanks to the PTSA for organizing this event which will occur in the LS MPR from 18:00 – 20:00.
And finally…
The secondary performing arts department is organizing the official opening of the Amphitheatre on the secondary campus. While the venue may be used for the Spring Fair, the first official theatrical student performance will occur on Friday, May 11.  It is indeed an impressive venue with a favourable location which maximizes the natural acoustics of the environment. 
In Support of the Arts,

Dr. Eric Sands, Director
The International School of Belgrade


From the Lower School Principal

Dear Lower School Parents,
I hope you have all enjoyed the week. Time seems to moving quite quickly here in the Lower School as we are already in the second week of the our final trimester.
This coming Tuesday, March 20, we will be hosting our Student-Led Conferences. These conferences are designed to bring parents, students, and teachers together to review progress in student learning. Please make a special note to see that students do attend these conferences as they play a crucial role in the conferencing process. Below are some pointers to successful Student-Led Conferences. We will have child-minding services available in our library for brothers and sisters that are not involved in conferences.
  • Bring your child with you! Students are expected at these conferences and play a vital role in their success.
  • Be prepared, read over the report card and prepare questions you might have for your child or teacher in advance.
  • Book times to see as many teachers as possible.
  • Arrive to the scheduled conference at least five minutes ahead of time to prepare yourself, and your child.
  • Listen.
  • Ask about the strengths of your child and the areas that he or she finds challenging at the moment at school.
  • Take notes.
  • Bring along a copy of the report card if you have specific questions regarding the report.
  • Ask your child(ren) what they feel are their strengths and areas they find challenging.
  • Ask your child(ren) if there is something they would like YOU to talk to the teacher about.
After the conference it is just as important to reflect on the process with your child(ren). Here are some helpful sentence starters:
  • During our conference, I noticed….
  • During our conference, I felt proud because….
  • I am pleased to see your effort in….
  • I know you sometimes have difficulty with….however,
  • I am proud of your improvement in….
  • I can help you by….
Some of the other upcoming events:
Bingo Night - tonight, March 16
Photo Re-Take Day, March 21
Spring Fair- April 21
I would like to thank all the LS Parents for attending our recent workshops. We had a nice turnout this past Tuesday for our PYP Workshop on Concepts, and we are excited to see more parents getting involved with the grade five PYP Exhibition. If you are still looking for ways to get more involved here at school, contact our PTSA ( to find out how you can lend a hand with our upcoming Spring Fair. This year, as in the past, we will have numerous countries represented during the fair. If you want to get involved, have a look at the PTSA section of the Dragon or contact the PTSA directly. This year we will also have a Parade of Nations during the event. Start planning now to wear your national dress or the colors of your flag! Students and parents can participate in the parade showcasing their national dress and pride. Please be on the lookout for a note from your child’s room parent. We are collecting items for the raffle baskets and donations can be sent directly to the school.
As Spring is upon us, we will be doing our share of ‘Spring Cleaning’ around the Lower School. Please take a look at our Lost and Found for items that might be missing from your house as next week we will empty the box for donations to those in need here in Belgrade. Labelling coats/jackets, hats, gloves, sweatshirts, and school bags will help return lost items to their rightful owners.
Enjoy your weekend and I look forward to seeing you all here in the Lower School on March 20,
Mr. Brian Lettinga
Lower School Principal


From the Upper School Principal

Dear Secondary Parents,
Space!!!! It is nice to see, especially our middle school students, enjoying the large open gymnasium and the green areas on our campus during breaks. It seems like we are through the worst of the winter weather and spring is quickly approaching.
I would like to remind parents that the end of the Third Academic Quarter is next Friday, March 23. Reports will be issued on Tuesday, March 27th electronically to parents. We then have our annual, spring Parent-Teacher Conferences on Wednesday March 28th. There will be no classes on that day and conferences will take place from 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM. As in previous conferences, parents will have the opportunity to make on line appointments. All the middle school and high school teachers will be conveniently in the gymnasium.  Students are required to attend with their parents. The online registration will start next Tuesday March 20th at 12:00 noon. We will send an email when the registration is open with instructions on how to access the schedule.
One of the nicest aspects of the IBO Middle Years Programme is the Personal Project. This is an independent study work that grade 10 students complete in their final year of the programme. Below, Antoni is pictured with his recently published play that he is donating to the ISB Library. The original work is a comedy set in New York city. A man buys a newspaper in a street kiosk and the paper has stories from the future. Antoni is submitting the play to publishers in the USA and he hopes one day to see his play on stage.
Many of our high school students have been inspired by the Joseph Kony documentary video, “Invisible Children”. The video which has had over 79 million views on YouTube, brings attention to the Ugandan Warlord who is on the most wanted list for the UN War Crimes court. The faculty has used this opportunity to address the video in their classes. I will also be hosting a round-table discussion of the video for interested students, teachers, and parents at 11:30 AM – 12:00 noon this Thursday March 22 on the first floor of the HS Main Villa. For a critical view of the video, please listen to this podcast from, the online magazine.  
Enjoy the warm weather this weekend!
Bill Kralovec
Upper School Principal


MYP - DP Portal

Dear Families of MYP Year 5 (grade 10) students,
This week the IB Diploma Programme (DP) teachers and Coordinator held a presentation for the grade 10 students. The purpose of the presentation was to familiarize the students with the course choices, and the specific requirements for each subject. The students were given a course selection form to start a process of selecting courses, that will lead them to the ISB High School graduation and possibly a full IB Diploma or certificates.  
While selecting the courses for the next two years, students and their families have to bear in mind where does the student wish to apply for his/her post-secondary education. The presentation was filmed and  absent students will have the opportunity to hear their teachers by watching the video. (Please take the DVD from Ms. Branka)
We will be holding a different presentation for parents and students of grade 10 Tuesday, March 20, at 6:30 (High School Computer Lab)
The presentation is by the IB MYP/DP coordinator, Mrs. Branka Sreckovic Minic, and Mrs. Devon Stafford, HS University Counselor. It is vitally important that all parents attend this presentation. Your teenager’s future options may be affected by their course choices now.
I am looking forward to seeing you next Tuesday, and answer questions you might have regarding the IB Diploma and ISB options.
Branka Sreckovic - Minic
IB MYP/DP coordinator/SBC (Pamoja Ed)
Humanities HOD


ISB Counselors' Corner

The March Issue of the newsletter Parents Make the Difference is available on the Lower School Counseling Blog at
This issue highlights:
  • ways to spend quality time as a family
  • handling arguments and other strategies for effective discipline at home
  • improving reading skills
  • the importance of critical thinking skills
Be sure to share tips and strategies with others.
Ms. Tara Pruitt 
LS Counselor
Dear ISB Middle and High School Parents,
On Wednesday, 4 April, the secondary campus will be hosting ISB's 2nd official Career Day event from 10:15 to 11:45.  Both secondary campuses will be participating in the event. 
We are looking for parents (or their colleagues) who work in all different sectors to speak with our students about the nature of their jobs and the paths they took to get where they are today.  If you are interested and can spare an hour or so to meet with and guide the next generation of professionals, we would be most appreciative of your expertise! 
Last year the following areas were of interest to our students.  This list is not limited!   We would love new careers represented at our fair.   
  • Law
  • Diplomatic Services
  • Medical Sciences (pediatrics and veterinary)
  • Graphic Design
  • Fashion
  • TV/Media
  • Athletics
  • Psychology
  • Entrepreneur
  • Hotel and Restaurant Management
  • Architecture
  • Marketing
 Let me know if you or someone you know is interested in coming.  Please mention the area you will be presenting in your email.
Many thanks.  We hope to hear from you soon!
Denise Granai & Devon Stafford
International School of Belgrade
New Series-Understanding University Entry & Admissions 101
Thursday Morning Parent Coffees with the HS Counselor, Ms. Devon Stafford  
Calling All Parents: Grades 9-11 This is your opportunity to learn about how you can help your child prepare for the next step of their education.  It is never too early.  The more that you understand about the different  university systems approaches, and requirements, the better you can help guide your family and your child in the next  step of their lives.  Arm yourself with information- come have coffee or tea with the counselor and learn some extremely useful information in the process.
Thursday, March 22nd  at 8: 15AM- 9:15AM in the HS Room 1-11A next to math room on 1st floor
Part 2:  Understanding North American Universities (US and Canada) 101
  • Learn the system and the approach to US and Canadian Universities and what it takes to get in
Thursday, March 29th  at 8: 15AM- 9:15AM in the HS Room 1-11A next to math room on 1st floor
Part 3:   Understanding the United Kingdom University System 101
  • Learn the system and what the universities are looking for
Thursday, April 5th at 8: 15AM- 9:15AM in the HS Room 1-11A next to math room on 1st floor
Part 4:   Understanding the needs for Universities around Europe and Beyond 101
  • What do you look for and how do you prepare for these opportunities.
Please RSVP if you can make it! 
Ms. Devon Stafford
HS Personal and University Counselor



Photo Re-take Day
The ISB Re-take Picture Day will be on March 21, 2012.
Should you have any questions about the process for ordering school photographs, please contact Mr. Adil Kuduzovic:, office phone 011/ 206 – 9920.
ISB Dragon Baseball
Dear Lower School Parents,
Spring training around the US is in full ‘swing’ for all Major League Baseball teams.  If you and/or your children are interested in learning more about baseball and practicing in learning the  fundamentals while getting some game experience, join us on the following Saturdays here at ISB on the SS campus. Practices will begin at 8:00 AM and will last until 10:00 AM. Be sure to bring a water bottle and a little snack if you think you might get hungry. The practices are open to boys and girls in Kindergarten – Grade 5. We will be holding practices on the below dates:
March  24
March  31
April  7
All you need to do is contact Ms. Ivana ( and send a note with the names and ages of the participants. We need names of adults that plan to accompany children, too. Our participant roster will be sent to security the evening before each practice.
Things you’ll need:
  • Hat
  • Water Bottle
  • Sports clothing
  • Tennis shoes, not cleats
  • Baseball glove, if you have one-bring it!
  • Any other baseball items
Hope to see you on the 24th of March,
Coach L
Coach K
Girls in the media: Miss Representation= Non Representation?
A new documentary film, Miss Representation, shows how the way women are portrayed in the US media affect both women’s expectations of themselves and men’s expectations of women.  The same effect is felt by other countries which import US made movies, TV shows and reality programs. The idea that the media trivialize and sexualize women has been well documented for years. However Jennifer Siebel Newsom, the Director, connects this with the fact that women in the US are seriously underrepresented in positions of power and influence. One of the statistics quoted was that women are responsible for only 3% of what appears in the media as a whole in the US even though they make up over 50% of the population.
The film, which was the official selection of the Sundance Film Festival in 2011, was shown at the American Corner in Belgrade on 15 March. It was followed by a panel discussion. The speakers were Ms Gordana Comic, Deputy Speaker of the Serbian Parliament, Ms Natalija Micunovic, Serbian Government Represntative , Ms Tanja Ignjatovic  from the NGO Autonomous Women’s Center,  and Professor Heldman who appeared in the film.
For the seven ISB students who watched the film, the idea of media misrepresentation of women had been covered in their media literacy course, but the idea of how this supports the patriarchal power system was new.
The Director asks why women are…..
3% of clout positions in the mainstream media
3% of Fortune 500 CEOs
7% of mainstream film directors
16% of film protagonists
17% of Congress
51% of the population
As our students are exposed to many, many images each day of their lives, the film forces us to consider to what extent our expectations and our treatment of our sons and daughters are influenced by our media diet and how their lives are both enriched and harmed by their exposure.
Hollywood Film Casting
From time to time Belgrade is chosen as a location to film Hollywood films. The Pajper Agency is casting for film THERESE RAQUIN, produced by William Horberg (who also produced MILK which won 2 Oscars, COLD MOUNTAIN which won 1 Oscar, THE TALENTED MR. RIPLEY which had 5 Oscar nominations, THE QUIET AMERICAN which had 1 Oscar nomination... and many other films). The crew is looking for a boy and a girl, between 9 and 12 years, for roles of YOUNG THERESE and YOUNG CAMILLE and both should be native English speakers, with blonde/light brown hair and light complexion. Please contact the LS office if you would like more information.



Dear ISB Community,
Last weekend was a busy one for our high school basketball programs. Our girls hosted the CEESA tournament and finished a creditable 4th place in their very first effort. Well done to all the girls as well as Coach Sands and Campbell.
This was the very first CEESA event to be held in the new gymnasium. The bleachers were packed with students from lower, middle and high school and the atmosphere was unbelievable. The ISB community really got behind our girls and make this event one that they will remember.
Our high school boys basketball team returned from Latvia victorious in more ways than one. As well as returning as CEESA Champions, the boys were also voted as the team with most Sportsmanship at the event. Well done to the boys and Coaches Eller & Kralovec.
I will leave it up to the basketball coaches to tell you all about their games.
Next week will see the start of the Spring Season. Volleyball will take place at the following times:
Gardening Club will begin on Tuesday after school. Please see Ms. Standley for details.
The bleachers were “Rockin”
I would like to take this opportunity to thank all the families that hosted the visiting players for this event. Without your help this tournament would not have been possible. THANK YOU!!!!
The Varsity Girls basketball team finished the season with a solid tournament effort.  More importantly, the entire ISB community showed their support of the Lady Dragons on three successive days through a positive display of attendance at all their games at the CEESA tournament.  From the beginning of the season, the players understood that this would be a year for building skills capacity while coming together as a team, two key ingredients necessary for a successful finish to the season.  As coaches we are thankful for the parental support of our student-athletes, and we’d like to thank Coach Hart for organizing a successful tournament and the 15 games throughout the season.  The girls finished the season with 6 wins and 9 losses.
Yours in basketball,
Coach Sands and Campbell
Boys’ High School Basketball Brings Home Double Gold!
The High School Boys’ Basketball Team won the CEESA Championship last weekend, hosted by the International School of Latvia. The Dragons won 5 consecutive games after their initial defeat in the round-robin portion of the tourney. ISB defeated the American International School of Vilnius 60-55 in the finals to take the title. It was their second championship in three years, losing in the finals last year.
The team was led by grade 11 Carl Kelly who averaged 17 points a game for the tourney. The Dragons played as a team and also had outstanding contributions from Dimitrije Veselinovic, Matija Tausan and Ivan Vukovic  in defense and rebounding. Special mention goes to “Mr. Clutch” Sava Stakic who made a last second basket against Helsinki in a preliminary game. His younger brother, Simeon, also contributed with stellar defense. Finally, Travis Eller and Shahaf Shay were excellent backcourt players.
The team was voted by their peers as demonstrating the most “sportsmanship.” After each game, the players of the team reflected on the respect displayed towards the referee, coaches, teammates, and opponents. The scores in the rubric were added up and ISB far and away, had the most points. It truly shows that the values of teamwork, effort, learning, and respect, directly contribute to winning games.
Coaches Eller and Kralovec would like to thank all of the players on the varsity and junior varsity for their effort this year. It was an amazing season (11-4 record) and the good news is that no one from the team is graduating, so all players will be returning for 2012-2013.
The results of the CEESA games were as follows:
ISB 36 – AIS Vilnius 42
ISB 45 – Pechersk IS (Kiev) 21
ISB 41- IS Helsinki 40
ISB 39 – IS Latvia 34
ISB 60 – AIS Vilnius 55
Coaches Eller and Kralovec
March 22-25 CEESA Robotics Tournament in Bucharest.
Mar 29 – 1 Apr MS Knowledge Bowl (CEESA Tournament) Zagreb
Apr 10 HS Music Concert ISB
Apr 25 – 29 HS CEESA Choir Moscow
Apr 26 - 29 MS Cultural Art Festival (CEESA Event) Vienna/Budapest
May 10 - 13 MS Girls Volleyball (CEESA Tournament) ISB
May 10 - 13 MS Boys Volleyball (CEESA Tournament) Cyprus
May 11 HS Spring Production ISB
May 17 - 20 HS Boys Volleyball (CEESA Tournament) Helsinki
May 17 - 20 HS Girls Volleyball (CEESA Tournament) Skopje
May 21 CEESA & Performing Arts Awards Evening ISB


From the Health Office

Chickenpox is a contagious viral infection primarily affecting children in their early years. Varicella vaccine can prevent this disease.  Currently, two doses of vaccine are recommended for children, adolescents, and adults.  About 15%–20% of people who have received one dose of chickenpox vaccine do still get chickenpox if they are exposed. Chickenpox in vaccinated persons is generally mild, with a shorter duration of illness and fewer than 50 lesions. After the child runs the full length of illness a second round of chickenpox is rare. Please note that Varicella vaccine is not an obligatory vaccine according to Serbian  immunization calendar. For more information on receiving vaccine against Varicella here in Belgrade, please consult your health care provider here.
For more information on Varicella vaccine, please visit the CDC.Gov:
As always I stand ready at your service.
Dr. Lilly


Library News


PTSA Corner

Friday 16th March - Bingo Night
Tuesday 27th March - Spring Fair Meeting (LS Library)
Tuesday 3rd April - PTSA Meeting 
Saturday 21st April - International Spring Fair
Bingo Night Friday 16th March
After a slight snow-caused hiccup, Bingo is back!  
This hugely popular ISB family event last year is a great entertainer. Easy to play, if the youngest kids can pick it up in minutes (and help any parents who have questions).
Come and support the SIA (Students in Action) who are running a bake sale on the night!  
Friday March 16 from 6-8pm in the MPR. Pizza, hot chocolate and drinks for sale during the night.
The Spring Fair gets into the Olympic Spirit!  
 The theme for this year's International Spring Fair is "The Olympic Spirit" and this will also be our theme for the art competition.  
At present we have 13 nations that will be represented at the Fair and hopefully more.  
For those who would like to help out at the Spring Fair for one or two hours, whether it be ticket sales, raffles, the list goes on...., then you can contact  our volunteer coordinator Elizabeth Lowther:
Spring Fair Class Baskets
Once again we are asking all families to donate items for the ever popular class baskets!  An email was sent to all families last week with the different themes for the classes and all the other information.  Any questions in the meantime can be sent to our basket coordinator Johnine -
Green Group
The green group has started to prepare the garden for the warmer weather, and has been working with Kinder to explore growing things. We will be looking into the HS garden and recycling in the coming weeks, as well as continuing with the LS garden.  If you have an interest in environmental issues please get in touch -
PTSA Meeting - 6th March 1:30pm in the Lower School Library
Mark your diaries for the next PTSA meeting - all welcome! 


Verzija na srpskom jeziku


Important Contact Information:

Lower School Reception:
Nikola Miletic

Upper School Reception:
Sandra Jelic

Dr. Rob Risch

Executive Secretary:
Natasa Tomic

Lower School Principal:
Brian Lettinga

Upper School Principal:
Angelo Coskinas

Lower School Counselor:
Jose Acevedo

High School/College Counselor:
Devon Stafford

Middle School Counselor:
Elisabeth Dunnenberger

Athletics and Activities:
Damian Hart

Admissions Coordinator:
Bojana Borovic-Dzogazovic

Transportation Coordinator:
Jasmina Nikolic

Security and Maintenance:
Goran Zarubica