HUSKY EXPRESS March 13, 2017


 Administration Corner 

  Head of School   

Respecting Hokkaido’s Cold Beauty

This past Saturday and Sunday, fourteen Outdoor Education students headed out on their winter overnight camp at the very frozen Okotanpe Lake.

I have been both tantalized by and terrified of -- in equal measure -- the possibility that I might one day be asked to help chaperone this trip. My opportunity rang this past weekend when I ventured out with the OE students. I put together every warm bit of clothing I could muster, boots good for -40ºC weather and met up with fellow participants early on Saturday morning.

I have never snowshoed with a pack on and with a loaded sled in tow. That was both a good workout and a great experience, but above all I got to see the beauty of winter in a way I would never have been able. As we built our snow shelters, made meals, spent the night atop beds carved out of snow, and awoke to a deeply frozen morning, I think we all also came to respect the cold in a very real way. It was a jarring contrast to counter the cold of the night with a rewarding hot dip in the baths at Marukoma Hot Spring, our reward to end the trip.

I recommend the OE experience to everyone. It is an essential experience in a world that is increasingly removed from a natural one. Come experience the world in its harshness and beauty.

Please Read the Outdoor Education section below. ade 11 - 1st place), Kate Fukui (Grade 12 - 2nd) and Raja (Grade 8 - 3rd). 


While it may not be feeling especially spring-like in Hokkaido, I would like to wish everyone a very happy “Spring Break” next week. A reminder that school will be closed from Monday, March 20 ~ Friday March 24. Happy Spring Break!

  From the Principal’s Office  

Spring Bazaar Volunteer Information
The PTA is looking for volunteers for the Spring Bazaar (April 15th).  If you are willing to pitch in, please sign up!  The sign up sheets are on a table in the front entrance to the school (or you can contact us at
Feel free to add your name to more than one list if you would like!

Volunteers are needed for the following duties:

- Setting up (the day before the Spring Bazaar and / or the day of)
- Ticket sale (these are tickets for purchasing food / drinks and student activities / games)
- PTA vending booth (selling donated goods)
- Organizing / sorting of donated goods (in advance of the bazaar)
- Bake sale / coffee / tea sale (at the bazaar)

Spring Bazaar Vendor Information

Vendors can participate in the flea market to sell used or new goods - clothes, toys, books, handicrafts, etc. (excluding food/drinks). Vendor spaces are open to the school community and the general public. A vendor space costs 1,500yen and measures approximately 2 x 1.5 meters (a discount rate of 1,000 yen applies for current HIS Staff, Parents and Students).

To reserve a vendor space, please email  or call HIS (011-816-5000) by Tuesday, April 12th.

Vendor space positions are allocated on a first-come first-served basis - hurry up and register!!!

Spring Bazaar Donation Information
Donations will be accepted for PTA stall (please no clothes or stuffed animals)
If you have some items that you’d like to get rid of, but are not planning on having your own vending space at the bazaar, please consider a donation to the PTA.  All proceeds from sales go toward grants to school programming (which directly benefit our children).

Donation box is in the front foyer of the school in front of the communications office

MAP Testing - Please note that the second round of MAP testing for 2016-17 is coming up.  Testing will run from March 27th to April 21st

PTA Steering Committee Meeting - Wednesday April 5th at 3:45 in the teacher’s lounge.

Have a wonderful SPRING BREAK next week!

 @ Niseko 

Thank you for a wonderful week of teaching and learning at HIS Niseko.

MP3-MAP Testing:
This month, HIS Niseko looks forward as the MP3 students take their next round of MAP testing. MAP standardized testing helps teachers evaluate their own teaching and assess student learning. Teachers will evaluate the collected data to inform our instruction.
Do your best, MP3.

May 18 looks to be a red letter day for HIS Niseko as we celebrate our First Annual International Fun Day. Many advanced thanks to the fine folks of Niseko Town Council Coordinators of International Relations.
Your plan for the day looks amazing.

Ski and Snowboard Instruction, this week:
Many thanks to the folks of Hokkaido Core for their continued partnership. We are so lucky to have you on our side. Hokkaido Core creates incredible learning opportunities for students and teachers as part of our PE curriculum.


Spring Seasonal School Update:
Difficult news.
After extensively promoting Seasonal School via Google Ads, Facebook, Experience Niseko, Vacation Niseko and Kutchannel; we have only 2 or so families that have signed up. For it to be financially viable, we figure that we needed six students during each of the 2 weeks. We decided to cancel Spring Seasonal School, rather than operate at a loss.
We will review what we could have done to make it workable for next time.

Upcoming Dates of Note:

  • March 20-24th Spring Break
  • No PIKININI on the 27th due to prior commitments.
  • March 29 MAP TESTING MP3- (Block 1) Language
  • March 31 Claire Yao visits HIS NISEKO for ELL training Mr. Sugino will visit.
  • March 31 MAP TESTING MP3- Block 1 (Reading)
  • April 3 MAP TESTING- MP3- Block 1 (Math)
  • 4th April: Crazy Hair Day at HIS Niseko
  • April 6 International Read Aloud

Barry Mernin

Teacher Administrator HIS Niseko

 Music Department 

Hokkaido International School proudly presents our annual music concert,

"A B C"

Date:    April 21st, 2017 FRIDAY
Time:   7 p.m.
Venue: Sapporo Concert Hall Kitara (Small Hall)
Tickets: Adult: 2000 yen
Child (High School and under): 1000 yen 

About 2 more months left till the big day- ticket sales for "ABC" have finally begun! Please don’t wait to get one or two or more! The concert will feature students from MP1 to Gr. 12 who will perform songs from different places, times, and occasions. It will also feature two songs composed by 2 of our very own community members!

Starting this year, we will introduce two types of tickets: free seating general tickets and reserved seat invitation tickets. For details, please see the following:

<For Free Seating General Tickets>
Adult: 2,000 yen
High school & under: 1,000 yen

Early Years to MP3 students and parents:
Submit the form sent out to all students and money in an envelope to your child’s homeroom teacher by March 8th*.

Secondary students and parents:
Submit the form and money in an envelope to the HIS office*.

*no change available

<For Reserved Seat Invitation Tickets>
Adult: 5,000 yen
High school & under: 4,000 yen

This year, we have special reserved seats for people who wish to donate 3000 yen in addition to the ticket price to reserve a good seat without having to wait in a long line before the concert. These reserved seats are limited to 50 people and are given on a first come first serve basis. The donations will be used to cover the cost of the concert, and the balance will be carried forward to next year's production. If you wish to purchase these seats, please send an email to the HIS Concert office. The seats will be assigned in the order of the emails received. In your e-mail, please write the student’s name, grade, and the number of tickets you wish to purchase (adult and/or child). The names of those who have made the donation by purchasing these tickets will be listed in the concert program. If you have any questions, please contact HIS Concert office at

  • Students who will be performing in the concert will not need to purchase tickets.
  • Early Years will not be performing. To see the concert, they will need to purchase tickets.
  • Tickets for the general public will be on sale at Daimaru Fujii Central (South 1 West 3 Chuo-ku Sapporo) from March 15th.

 Juniors Service Trip to Sri Lanka 

The Juniors Service Trip to Sri Lanka will be from 13th-24th March. They will be providing service to 5 different charities and NGO’s over that time. They have fundraised over 1,060,000yen so far to contribute to the charities.


The Instagram link can be found:

 Husky Hugs 

Husky Hugs go out 

  • On Friday, HIS Niseko was privileged to receive a visit from Mr. Yutaka Sugino and his wife, Junko.  The lovely couple dedicated their day, came all the way from Sapporo, in the snow, to help us with our Spring Concert rehearsal. Our students and teachers, though tired, will long remember this day. Thank you.
  • Hugs go out to Dan, secondary teachers and those who went out to support the HS Ski Days on Thursday and Friday of last week. Two very successful days.
  • An advance thanks to Rod Kelly and Karen Katayama who will be accompanying the MS basketball trip to Kobe. Go Huskies!!
  • Amalie Aseltine for overseeing the Speech Club and Speech Contes


After School Japanese (ASJapanaese) 課外日本語教室  

Japanese Classes Currently Available! 生徒募集中
Back by popular demand, HIS offers after school Japanese language lessons. Classes are held on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays from 3:45 - 4:45 PM.
The following classes are available:

Day Level (Current) Age Range Room
Tuesday Beginner + Grade 7 - 11 Room 302
Thursday Native / Near-native Grade 4 - 10 Room 301
Friday Beginner Grade 2 - 5 Room 302

For program information and applications, please contact the program director at

曜日 レベル 年齢幅(現時点) 教室
火曜日 初級から 7年生〜11年生 302番
木曜日 ネイティブ ・上級 4年生〜10年生 301番
金曜日 初級 2年生〜5年生 302番


お問い合わせは: まで。皆さんのご応募をお待ちしております。

 Upcoming Events 


MARCH and APRIL Events

March 13 - 24 Junior Service Trip (Sri Lanka)
March 31 - Sports Award Banquet

April 3 - 5 - Multicultural Fair
April 6 -9 - Boys Futsol Tournament
April 7 - End of 3rd Quarter
April 15 - Spring Bazaar 2017
April 17 - School Holiday (Teacher Professional Development)
April 21 - “A B C” Concert at Kitara Hall
April 23 - AdHOC Yoichidake trip


The annual Sports Awards Dinner is coming up on March 30th from 6-9 pm. Everyone is invited to come and celebrate the efforts of the sports teams and enjoy some yummy food prepared by our international chef. Tickets are available from team captains and also the school office. Always a good night so get your tickets !

Futsul players have been enjoying some Sunday afternoon games with a local club team to give them some valuable experience before their tournament in April.
Go Huskies !

 Husky Lunch 

Please here for viewable and downloadable versions of the Husky Lunch Menu -  March. 13 - 17

 Elementary Activities 

This will be the last week of activities before the Spring Break … interested to hear from any teachers or parents who would like to lead a new activity after Spring Break ?

 Multicultural Fair 

4月3日(月)から5日(水)にかけてLanguage DepartmentではMulticultural Fairを実施いたします。それに先立ちまして、二つお願いがあります。


②日本の遊び紹介 保護者ボランティア募集!

日本語科 奈良・宮武

 Extracurricular Spotlight 

The Sumikawa Kendo Club invites HIS students to come and learn this traditional Japanese sword-based martial art. Please see the information below on a series of trial lessons held at HIS, for HIS students and parents:
The Sumikawa Kendo Club invites HIS students (MP1 and above ) and Adults for free trial lessons.


April 2 (Sunday) and April 9 (Sunday)  9:30 ~ 11:00
Place: HIS Gym (practice is normally held at Sumikawa Elementary School)
Instruction will be given in Japanese but English language support is available.
Please see the forthcoming email announcement from Husky Information
For more details, please contact

 Outdoor Leadership OP Snow Camp 

Thirteen Outdoor Pursuits students and two senior solo campers hiked up to and across Lake Okotanpe this past weekend. After the 5 km hike, we set about digging into the 2-meter snow pack to construct snow shelters, which when covered with a blue tarp are quite cozy. A nearly full moon rose over Eniwa-dake as we started a bonfire to warm are toes around. The next morning was clear, a fine day to hike back across the lake and down to a waiting Marukoma onsen soak. Trip good.

 HIS Parent E-mailing List 


Do you ever have trouble receiving the weekly HEx, Husky-Info bulletins or other school-wide emails?  Do you have another email address to which you’d like to receive these electronic communications? If so, please email our communications coordinator at so we can update our mailing lists and include you as soon as possible!

 From PTA 

Please note, all Steering Committee meetings are held on the first Wednesday of each month.  Any parent is welcome to attend, and please let Neil or Megumi know if you would like to become a regular (and voting) member of the committee.

Next meeting is  MARCH 1st at 3:45 in the Teacher’s Lounge
Free babysitting is available for during the meeting upon request.

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