La Gazette

La Gazette highlights the variety of stories happening in our FAIS community every day—from moments in the classroom and around campus to service projects and off-campus activities.

Usually published twice per month during the school year, La Gazette is shared via email with current families and staff. It can also be found here, in our website archive. 


8th Grade Boys Basketball Back-to-Back Champions!

In Tuesday night’s championship game vs. Valor, our 8th grade boys basketball team held on for a 50-43 win to finish as undefeated champions -- two years in a row! 


After being in control for most of the game, the Eagles fell behind by 5 points in the 3rd quarter. Thanks to a couple of clutch 3s, we took back the lead heading into the 4th quarter, then pulled away by going 6 for 6 on free throws down the stretch. Our final free throw (featured in the video) iced the game, making it a three possession lead with only 8 seconds to go.


Congratulations, Eagles!!! Your resilience, teamwork, and commitment make the entire FAIS community proud. 

It’s a Bird... It’s a Plane... It’s ACE Week!

Last week, our preschool-5th graders wrote, illustrated, and designed their own comics/graphic novels. How do you wrap up a week of this much fun? By donning capes and unveiling their creations at our first ever Comic Con!

Our middle schoolers enjoyed a number of off-campus workshops, including a lesson on gravity from a certified STEM educator… then experienced it for themselves with indoor skydiving at iFLY! After lunch, they continued applying their knowledge by jumping over to Sky High Sports Portland for some trampolining and other gravity-testing activities.

Thanks to our in-house Super Friends for making this all possible: the FAIS Extracurricular Team!

We (1st Graders) Built This City

The 1st graders have been building a city in L'espace créatif (Creative Space). As part of their "Where we are in space and time" unit, the students took on the jobs of urban planners, architects, builders, and cartographers. 


They started with an empty plot of land, then held many discussions to determine what it meant to be a city and what services were needed. After the buildings were constructed, people, cars, ambulances, and farm animals were borrowed. The students drew maps to help visitors find their way around and practiced giving directions.


On February 21st, the city was officially opened and students led members of the FAIS community through their mini metropolis!

German and International Track Students Explore the Silk Road through Interactive Mapping

Sixth graders in the German Track and International Track came together for a social studies unit on China and the Silk Road trade route. Ms. Seydel (German Track) and Ms. McCandless (International Track) collaborated with Ms. Sinclair (GIS Design) to use dynamic mapping technology as a tool for student-driven inquiry of how trade influences society.


“We’re better teachers when we try things together. Kids are always excited to interact with students outside of their track” - Ms. McCandless


Through this interactive inquiry project, students were challenged to look for clues that took them beyond static maps and books to explore history in a much more meaningful way.


  • How long did it take to travel the Silk Road (by camel)?
  • How would that affect the price you set for trade?
  • How did people communicate with people from other parts of the world?
  • What types of non-tangible items were exchanged (religion, ideas, information)?
  • How does this compare to today?

These two classes then had a follow-up activity to close out the week, with each student bringing two examples of non-tangible trade items to discuss and simulate trading!

PM Class Spotlight: Baking with Dave (4th-8th Grade)

Offered on Fridays, this class is about more than baking delicious desserts. It’s about family, honoring those who’ve come before us, and having fun in the kitchen! It’s also probably going to make you cry (in a good way), so you may want to grab some tissues.


Dave Yeager (Music and English Teacher, and Extracurricular Aide) loved baking with his mom, Kathy. Before he left for college, she gave him a handwritten book with all of her dessert recipes, knowing he’d miss her baking. Over the last 20 years, he’s kept it safe, used it countless times, added some recipes of his own… and is excited to teach your kids the recipes that made his childhood the most delicious and memorable.


“What makes this extra special to share with our students, is that my mom was still alive while I was planning this class. When we’re listening to the same music she used to play in our kitchen when I was a kid -- The Moody Blues, Sam Cooke, Donovan -- I can feel her in the FAIS kitchen, watching us dance around and have a great time.”


Students learn a new recipe each week, baking half of it at school, and bringing the other half home to bake with their family. At the end of the class, students will also receive a copy of the cookbook with a picture of Dave and his mom as a thank you. Our thanks to Dave for sharing this touching story and for sharing these precious recipes with our community. 


Want to learn more about all of our PM Classes? Visit our PM Classes page and register online!

6th Grade Families Prepare for Natural Disasters

Disasters happen. In 6th grade science, students finished their plate tectonics unit with a disaster safety focus. They have learned that the Pacific Northwest is a geologically active area because of our proximity to the Cascadia Subduction Zone. They became aware that Portlanders live with the unpredictable nature of living in a subduction zone. Together with volcanic eruptions and landslides, earthquakes are the most probable natural disaster that Portlanders may face. 


Disaster Preparedness Discussion & Reflection: Students led two meetings with family members to discuss how prepared their family is to deal with a disaster. The agenda included a Home Hazard Hunt, discussion of a family preparedness plan, and a disaster kit supply review. Following these meetings, students completed an in-class reflection with the subject “How prepared is my family for a natural disaster?”


One Family’s Journey: Michelle Detwiler shared that her daughter, “Isa did a fabulous job finally motivating me to build on some of the work I’d already started on my earthquake preparedness supplies! This was a great project for us to do together! I’m still figuring out the water storage piece.” Preparation is always a process and while water storage is a challenge, Isa rated her family's emergency supply kit an 8 out of 10 because “we have plenty of food to keep us alive as well as medical supplies if anyone gets hurt. We feel confident using the camping supplies because we go camping often and know how to use them.”


How Prepared is Your Family? To guide this discussion, you can use resources from Oregon Emergency Management including the booklet Living on Shaky Ground: How to survive earthquakes and tsunamis in Oregon, which shares the seven steps to earthquake safety. In addition, here are some tips compiled by the Portland Bureau of Emergency Management regarding water storage.

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