H.I.S. Environment Week 2021

Chumbe the turtle set free!

Our Environment Week in June was full of new colour, stories, and connections. Thank you to all who took part to help us make a difference in our classes, homes, and beyond.

Here is a little summary of what went on:

The H.I.S. Spring Environment Challenge helped students across the school to reduce their footprint on the environment through everyday habits and actions. This activity sparked great ideas and discussions, with some students earning punches on their cards for a whole week or even four!

Then in June, our Chumbe the Turtle mandala, inspired by our growing connection to Chumbe Island, filled the school hours with excitement and colour. At the same time the Kiembe Samaki school in Zanzibar did their own beautiful turtle painting and shared it with us.

In the PYP, EP students collected all the plastic waste that they produced, during snack and lunch, and learned about the 3 Rs (Reduce, Reuse, Recycle). They really got to understand what Reduce means. EP worked in their garden, planting corn, potatoes, sunflowers, pumpkins and wild flower seeds.

Grade 1 students were also very busy planting corn, potatoes, sunflowers and pumpkins in their garden boxes. It is incredible how much their plants have already grown. They really enjoyed their Amazing Adaptations unit and they concluded that all living things depend on each other.

Grade 2 was very active creating a display at the front of the school with beautiful flowers to remind us all to look after the environment. Under the slogan, ‘It’s not my rubbish but it is my world’, they completed a garbage pick-up in their communities. Over a week, they sorted rubbish into its different recycling categories and placed it in the proper bins. They even zoomed with the education and conservation team from Chumbe Island and enjoyed singing the Coral Song. Here’s a link to the song! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Cusz66JZXkA.

In the secondary school, Grade 7 learned about the impact human action is having on the planet during this new geological era that has been named Anthropocene.

In science class, the Grade 8 students researched issues of environmental concern, critically evaluated sources and evidence, and created presentations urging their classmates to learn more about the topics, which ranged from whaling to fast fashion.

During I&S, Grade 9 created some beautiful nature paintings. Proceeds from the paintings to the sum of 122€ were donated to the Heidelberg Forest in Brazil project which is engaged in the replanting of the Atlantic Rainforest (Mata Atlântica). The class also highlighted areas of human dependence and its effect on the environment by creating a school newsletter on global change during an interdisciplinary study in I&S and science.

Sibylle Riedmiller, a German social scientist and founder of the Chumbe Island marine protected area, gave an online talk to the Grade 10 I&S class on Chumbe Island to support their unit on sustainable development, and environmental and population issues.

In Frau Stricker’s Grade 9/10 German group, students sowed sunflower seeds and planted the seedlings into the new school lizard garden. In order to help the sunflowers to survive through the summer holidays, the students have built an irrigation system with “ollas” (terracotta pots). The students also wrote and designed signs to help explain the conservation of the lizards in the garden.

As part of their ecology unit, the DP biology students created mesocosms to model a closed system and, by carefully balancing organic and inorganic nutrients and processes, hope to keep their systems alive and healthy throughout the summer!

It has been an incredible Environment Week with Chumbe Island as a focus for the entire school, yet with some many other projects going on in different classes.

The Chumbe mandala bags have been ordered and with Grade 8’s help, we managed to raise 237€ from the bag sales. 150€ have been donated towards the education programs on Chumbe Island, and 87€ will help to cover the cost of the lizard signs on the playground. A big thank you to all of you who contributed to the fundraiser. Orders will be possible again next school year!

To further support education and conservation on Chumbe Island, check out their crowdfunding site:


The H.I.S. Environment Working Group would like to thank the following people for their incredible contributions towards our 2021 Environment Week. It has been such a pleasure working with you all, and we are already very excited about future projects together in the 2021-22 school year:

  • The teachers, staff, students and parents of Heidelberg International School
  • Ulli Kloiber and Enoch Kayagambe from the conservation and education team of Chumbe Island Coral Park, Zanzibar, Tanzania,
  • The waste ambassadors from villages of Buyu, Chukwani, Dimani, Kiembe Samaki, Kombeni and Nyamanzi, on Zanzibar.
  • The students of Kiembe Samaki School and their Environment Club teacher Mr.Issa.
  • The founder of Chumbe Island Coral Park, Sibylle Riedmiller.

Have a great summer!

The H.I.S. Environment Working Group

Sommerlauf 2021

For the second year in succession, the annual TV Edingen Summer Run cannot take place in its usual form, however, rather than cancel it completely there will again be a ‘Virtual Race’ between the 2nd and the 4th of July.

Distances of 1,5km for children and 3,6km and 10km for older students and adults are available.

The route that you run is completely up to you so you can decide to run anywhere in the world that you like. The only requirement is that you need to be sure of your route distance and the time taken to cover it. For those of you who run with a phone, GPS watch or similar this will be easy enough.

However, if you do not have any of these then you can plan a route on Google Maps, Komoot or any other mapping App and simply time yourself. You just need to enter your time with the personal link you will receive on registration. If you would prefer to walk, there is a 7,5km walking distance and of course all distances allow walking.

All funds raised will be split between social development funds in Edingen-Neckarhausen and the Deutsche Knochenmarkspenderdatei

(DKMS) supporting those affected by leukemia.

I would love to hear of the Edingen Sommerlauf been held in far flung parts of the world or even just in the local area. Last year we had runners in New Zealand, Scotland, Australia, the Netherlands and the USA.

Please forward this information to anyone else who may be interested. So make it a family event and start planning your route. Be ready to run between 00:00 on the 2nd July and 23:59 on the 4th.

You can register directly at https://runtix.com/sts/10021/1992

You can register in English (top right of the screen)

If you should require more information or any help registering then please contact me. allyn.raw@hischool.de

Freie Fahrt voraus!

Grade 4 Road Safety Training

After starting off the training at freezing temperatures and in the rain, Grade 4 students had beautiful sunshine today to show what they’ve learned in the last 3 road safety training sessions.

The traffic police officers had a lot to do to keep an eagle-eyed eye on whether all traffic signs and traffic rules were being observed.

Congratulations, Grade 4 students!

You did a great job!

Gratitude Tree

A Chance to Reflect

Reflection is an important part of the IB experience. MYP students were challenged recently to discover what they are grateful for despite such an unbelievable year.

Every blossom of our gratitude tree (in the window above our front door) contains a grateful moment. We are now grateful and look forward to a much needed break.

The attached article shared by a H.I.S. parent reminds us that our students need to play this summer, recover mentally and embrace a possible future with many more of the aspects of the life we cherish.


text & gratitude tree design: LF


Expert visits German class

Grade 3 welcomed musician Daniel Gallimore

On Wednesday, 9th June, we welcomed Daniel Gallimore to our German class (Grade 3 AGP). When Daniel joined our lesson on zoom, we saw him sitting in front of his drums. Daniel is a professional musician, playing drums with his band Neomore and he is also a drum teacher.

As our summative assessment for the unit: “Know Your Rights” we have to plan an inclusive playground (that means that everybody can play on the playground – children with handicap or not). Daniel was our expert, that we could ask questions about playgrounds for children with handicaps, because, since birth, he is also in a wheelchair.

When he was younger, he didn’t have too many choices to play on playgrounds that were suitable for him in his wheelchair. He showed us a few photos of things he would have liked to play with. A sandpit, that was not on the ground, more like a table, so he could sit in the wheelchair while playing with sand. We saw a seesaw that can be used for wheelchairs and also for children who can walk, a swing for wheelchairs and a climbing frame that had a wooden, wobbly bridge for people in a wheelchair and other children. He also told us that an inclusive playground is very important, so we are not excluding people and learn from each other.

We got so many ideas from talking to Daniel, that we were super excited when started to draw up our own ideas for an integrative playground. Thank you, Daniel for the talk and the little concert you gave us! You are a very good drummer!

Text: Grade 3 AGP and SH

Photo: SH

Grade 6 IB Learner Profile Wall of Honour

In Grade 6 homeroom class, we celebrate our differences and promote the IB Learner Profile attributes by nominating classmates who we think represent the 10 LP attributes best.

We started this activity in September 2020 by reflecting and observing one another during classroom lessons (even during distance learning) to determine who we think deserves special recognition for any of the different LP attributes. It is our responsibility to be fair ensuring that we are not nominating our classmates because we are “close friends”. Then, our homeroom teachers observe the nominated student to validate our nominations.

After final deliberation of our teachers, during one of our Homeroom sessions there will be an announcement recognizing the student who deserves to get their hands marked on the IB Learner Wall of Honour in our classroom. With this activity, we feel proud and successful. Above all,  we learn how to reflect, appreciate our classmates and try our best to achieve the 10 IB learner attributes to inspire others.

Sasha and Maahi, Grade 6

“Chumbe” The Turtle

Environment Week - Preparing The Mandala

How can you transfer the outline of a giant Turtle Mandala onto the gym roof?

The Environment Working Group members found a way! “Chumbe” the turtle is now ready for some colour, which the H.I.S. students can start to add after the weekend.

Please remember that bags with the Turtle Mandala design can be ordered. Details of how to order these were sent with the last H.I.S. newsletter.

Stay posted to see the how “Chumbe” takes shape and colour over the next days.

Chumbe Island

Sustainable Waste Management Campaign

As our activities at H.I.S. begin ahead of Environment Week (14-21 June) with the Environment Week Challenge Punchcards, our connection to Chumbe Island Coral Park, a protected marine area off the coast of Zanzibar in Tanzania, grows.

A chance meeting in the Weststadt, Heidelberg, with the marine park’s founder, Sibylle Riedmiller, has led to a burgeoning collaboration between Chumbe Island’s marine experts and educators, and the students and teachers of H.I.S. Grade 10 and Grade 2 have made contact with the island and have arranged Zoom calls with question-and-answer sessions on sustainable development and marine pollution.

As we prepare to work collaboratively on our most ambitious rooftop Mandala to date (kick off 7th June), with a design inspired by the turtles of Chumbe Island, and as our thoughts turn towards what we can do to reduce our environmental footprint, we have just received information about what is happening in 6 coastal villages close to Chumbe Island.

Chumbe’s Sustainable Waste Management Campaign has been working with 10 Waste Ambassadors from each community, with education and training culminating in 6 beach clean ups and the analysis of waste.The overwhelming majority of marine debris found during the beach clean-ups was degraded plastic and styrofoam. Each village has since been building a sculpture in their village using the waste they collected to tell their waste issue story. Here are some photos from the communities of Buyu, Chukwani, Dimani, KiembeSamaki, Kombeni and Nyamanzi. We thank them for sharing their ideas and photos with us.

For more information on Chumbe Island go to https://chumbeisland.com/about-chumbe/project-history/.