Third-grade student Jonah Giuliani, aged eight, writes about life at Ambrit International School.
My name is Jonah and I am an Ambrit student. Ambrit is an international school in Rome. It has kids from all around the world. It is an opportunity for kids to learn happily and meet new friends. Ambrit is a big school, which has all kind of lessons, from nursery to the eighth grade. It also offers after-school activities, such as sports (such as soccer, tennis, yoga), arts (ceramics, sketchbook, theater, crafts), and music (piano, cello, violin). In my opinion these afterschool activities are a great way to have new experiences, and it is an important time to enjoy yourself and have fun together. In the atrium of Ambrit are flags from all the countries of the world from which the students come. On the walls visitors can admire a collection of sea shells, minerals, and some animals (a baby alligator, a frog, a turtle, a snake, and seahorses).
I am in third grade, and my teacher’s name is Ms. Rinaldis, and she is very funny. I have been at Ambrit for almost four years. The head of the elementary school is Monica Barden. She is kind and gentle. This year some of the things we are learning include multiplication and facts about the earth (volcanoes, earthquakes, layers of the earth, sink holes). We are also writing a National Geographic book for our final evaluation, where we have been collecting all the information and pictures we have studied.
The holiday time is special at Ambrit. Every year, we have the tradition called the “winter recital” (with free entrance) in which students play instruments, sing to parents, and perform in artistic ways. Kids learn beautiful songs taken from different cultures and countries and in different languages: for example, African folk songs, American traditional tunes, Chinese melodies and German lullabies. It is also a chance for kids to have solos and show what they have learned on instruments. The songs are very meaningful and full of happiness. I played my violin for a song.
I felt scared, but with the support of my friends I felt amazing. Mrs Paige Short, who is the very good music teacher of the elementary school, is always very proud of her students. After the performance, all of us (students, teachers, and parents) gather in each of the classrooms to share some yummy treats. I believe that every child works hard to learn the words in only a couple of months.
We have another school tradition: organising bake sales and bazaars for special occasions to raise money and learn how we can help others. We have bake sales twice a year to support two orphanages, one in India and one in Haiti. At home we prepare cookies or other baked goods, and we also collect toys. Then we sell them, and the money goes to those who need it. Recently in the atrium of the school we had the Giving Back Bazaar to raise money and donate items to several organisations in Rome that support homeless people and refugees. At home, we, the students, made crafts, toys, and simple things people could play with, and sold them so we could ‘give back’. The theme of this year’s event was ‘home’, so we could understand the meaning of having a family, a nice place to eat and sleep and play. A home is a place to love. There was a stand where you could write a thank-you letter to someone who was nice to you and have it delivered. The day of the bazaar was filled with lots of crafts, singing, and having fun all over the school. There were so many colours and music in the atrium that it could have filled a rainbow. It is the happiest time of the year.
Another activity at Ambrit is sports. Every once in a while I participate in soccer tournaments, which are played among the international schools in Rome. The last one in December was held at the Ambrit soccer fields: we have four of them. I like to play soccer (it is my favourite afterschool activity). As a school, we have two teams, Red and White. I am on the White team. To be in the finals, a team has to have 50 points. We only got 36 points. We played against the Castelli team and the one from St George's. Guess what? Castelli won.
I forgot to mention that in the fall we have a great event called the International Fair and Barbeque. It is an amazingly fun moment: on a Saturday morning, in October, every student with their family gathers at school and brings food specialties from their own countries, so that everybody can have a taste of so many kinds of international dishes. Plus we have a huge inflatable castle and different stations where we can visit ‘countries’ and play games, earn points, and get prizes. This year there also was a theme: “exploring the world”. The school provided a special passport and we received a stamp with the name of all the countries we ‘visited’ during the Fair. I got 13 stamps on my passport.
One of the best things I have done after the full year of school is Mr Alessandro’s summer camp in the mountains, at Monte Livata. There we stayed in a hotel (three or four in a room, by ourselves) and during the day we walked in the woods, played tennis, and other sports. In the evenings we performed a “talent show”, and I won it, which means I got the first place for writing a poem. One of my good friends got third place. But the coolest sport was rafting on the local river and rock climbing. While rafting, I almost got totally wet. I hope to go back to Monte Livata next summer as well.
I think that Ambrit is a beautiful place for kids to learn and enjoy themselves in a happy way.
Ambrit International School, Via F. Tajani 50, website.
Wanted in Rome Junior. Wanted in Rome is accepting contributions from students in all international schools in Rome. Articles on topics related to either the student’s life in Rome or their school projects can be submitted by their class teachers. The work should be no more than 1,000 words and all contributions should contain the name, age and school of the student. We also accept illustrations. Any class teachers who would like to propose a project please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
Published in the January 2017 issue of Wanted in Rome.