School Blog

Pythagoras Quest victory for two IES schools

Mathematicians (L-R): Marc Tudosoiu, Erik Bryland and Emil Scharin

IES students won the gold and silver prizes in national mathematics contest Pythagoras Quest 2019.
While the team from IES Lund won the contest, their counterparts from IES Uppsala took second place. Both teams recorded a perfect score until the decider question, when the fastest team with the right answer won.  On the day, that meant that IES Lund went home with the win.
Erik Bryland was part of IES Lund’s team for the third time. He said: “It feels really good to win, I have competed with five different people over the years. When I participated in seventh grade, we came fifth in the regionals, when I was in eighth grade we came fifth in nationals, and this time we won.”
"I think taking part three times made me more comfortable in the competition, maybe I can think more clearly when I am there, because I am more comfortable."
Marc Tudosoiu, fresh from his victory in Spanish during Il Competition, was also part of the winning Pythagoras Quest team. He said: “A challenge like this motivates you to study further, if you only stay at the level presented in class it is hard to develop your skills. This is why it is important to join these kinds of competitions as well, to keep yourself motivated to study more.
"We were expecting to be in the top three, we didn’t know we would be first, we knew the other teams were talented as well. We had met the team from Uppsala before the competition and they were very good at maths as well, so we were expecting top three but not first place."
The popular annual maths competition focuses on students working together in groups of three.  The competition sees students compete within their school to make the school’s team before facing off against other schools in their region.  The winning 16 teams are then invited to Malmö Borgarskola to compete in the national final.
The news was welcomed by Damian Brunker, head of academics and quality at Internationella Engelska Skolan.  He said: “We are delighted and extremely proud that our students have taken first and second place again this year. Commitment, hard work and grit have delivered results."
"We'd also like to thank the teachers who have provided the quality instruction required to help our students achieve these awards."
Erik and Marc had advice for anyone hoping to take part next year.
Erik said: “Look at old problems, there are a bunch of different contests in different parts of the world.”
Marc agreed: “We practiced on Fridays with past tests. Do many old tests, this competition links past tests on their website, it is always good to take a peek at them to know what it is about so you are more prepared."

Video: 13 IES Schools Competed In Eurovision Inspired Contest

Video: 13 IES Schools Competed In Eurovision Inspired Contest

Singing in Spanish helped Emilia Söderlund (above, centre, with her teacher Mr Vary and her mother) from Internationella Engelska Skolan Johanneberg to win a language and music competition for IES schools.

Each year schools compete in a Eurovision-inspired contest, which sees students sing in languages other than English or Swedish.

This year 13 schools took part in the competition at IES Sundsvall – who hosted because they won the competition last year, in true Eurovision style.

Those competing sang in French, German and Spanish, in front of hundreds of students, and a jury made up of language and music teachers, at Tonhallen in Sundsvall.

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Video of the winner's reprise: Emilia Söderlund from IES Johanneberg

After a tense judging process considered the linguistic and musical talents of the very strong entries this year, Mr Brisson, principal of IES Sundsvall, announced the results.

While Emilia took first prize, a team from IES Eskilstuna (left), made up of Tamara Abood, Farah Mouhi, Eira Ankarfjärd and Darian Mather came second, while Cecilia Nilsson from IES Lund (below, right) came third.

Other schools who made the journey to Sundsvall to take part in this year’s contest included IES Bromma, Huddinge, Kista, Landskrona, Liljeholmen, Tyresö, Täby, Västerås and Årsta.

After performing David DeMaría song Cada Vez Que Estoy Sin Ti and receiving her trophy Emilia told the audience: "Thank you so much, I did not think I was going to win since there are so many talented people here and they were really great. Give them applause, please.”


After she left the stage she added: “I am grateful that I had this chance today, and I want to thank everyone, but especially my Spanish teacher Señor Rios, my music teacher Mr Duckworth, Mr Vary for coming with me, and my parents for being there with me and supporting me.

"This was my first time taking part in Eurovision, it was exciting but then I heard the other schools singing and they were so good, so I got nervous, but it was exciting.

"When I heard the winner announced, I said ‘well, that’s me’. I thought that Sundsvall would win again because I think she was really good and deserved to win.

"I have been studying Spanish for three years. I would not have believed three years ago that I could win today, but my music teacher told me that I should be here and he helped me, and here I am.”

Emilia’s victory means that next year the contest will be hosted by IES Johanneberg. She gave advice for all students thinking of taking part: “Believe in yourself, do what you like to do, and do not worry about what others think."

Winning turn: Emilia performing in front of judges

IES Students Excel in Language Contest

IES Students Excel in Language Contest

Winners: (L-R) Marc Tudosiou, Linus Widell and teacher Ms Dykes of IES Lund, following their victory in the IL Competition Spanish Contest.

Students from IES schools have shown that they can command more than the English and Swedish languages.

During the Swedish final of the International Language Competition, students from IES Karlstad took the first prize in French for those under 16 while the team from IES Lund performed best in Spanish.

The contest was held at the end of March at Malmö Latinskola and students were tested on their vocabulary, grammar and cultural understanding during the contest.  

Linus Widell, of grade eight at IES Lund, is one of the students who won the Spanish contest.  He said: “Speaking other languages is important because you learn about different cultures and you can communicate with people from around the world. Spanish is spoken by almost 500 million people so it’s a big advantage to be able to speak this language.  We are looking forward to the language trip to Spain that we won."

His team-mate Marc Tudosiou of grade nine said: “Our teacher said that we should enter the contest. We prepared at lessons during fall and then in week six we did the first try-outs.

“We all had to answer 80 questions online and we were the top two students in our class. We qualified for the regional finals and won and then went for the nationals.

"There were a lot of different questions and we had only 12 seconds to think about the answer so it was a bit stressful but also fun.”

The team from IES Karlstad took first place in the French contest.

Winner Adam Höög said: “Our biggest challenge by far was competing against Franska Skolan in the national finals. In the qualification tests that took place before the regional finals, Franska Skolan had an average score that was around 10 points higher than ours, so our hopes of defeating them and winning were low.

“To overcome this challenge, I made sure to study every piece of trivia I could think of in order to stand any kind of chance against them.”

His team-mate Isak Wikström had advice for anyone thinking of taking part. He said: “Focus a lot on the general trivia about French-speaking countries. A third of the questions are about trivia. Also be careful about trick questions where similar words are used, for example the French words for advocate and avocado - avocat and avocad. 

“Languages provide you with opportunities for future work in other countries and they open new doors to different kinds of knowledge. It is also really fun to learn other languages. ”

A student from IES Umeå, Michael Yates of class 8B, also took first prize in the contest for those with English as their home language (Modersmål). 

He said: "I speak English at home and it seemed only natural that I would take part. I thought it would be interesting to enter the competition and have a go, and it seemed like a fun challenge. I was very surprised when it turned out I had won, at first I didn't believe it. My family were very pleased with me, and quite proud."

Other IES schools performed well in the contest including a second place in German from IES Umeå, third in English from IES Linköping, and third and fourth places in Swedish from IES Hässleholm and IES Johanneberg.  IES Sundsvall came third in French, while IES Hässleholm came seventh.  The Spanish contest saw IES Gävle in third place and IES Hässleholm in fifth place.

Competition Winners' Trip to South Korea

Competition Winners' Trip to South Korea

Two students from Internationella Engelska Skolan Lund recently visited Seoul after their performance in problem-solving competition Enlightening Imagination.

This is an account written by Elisabeth Dierschke Passikhani and Alva Brant about their time in South Korea:

Our school IES Lund competed in the competition Enlightening Imagination at Vattenhallen. The task was to, using the material 4D Frame, build a model of something that would help the environment in any way. We built a machine that collects and recycles garbage from the streets or the sea, and we won! We then got to make a video which we sent to Stockholm, to compete against all the other winners in Sweden. We were very happy when we got the message that our invention won!

The prize was to travel to Seoul, South Korea, and compete in the big international 4D Frame Competition, IMSCC. There were four other teams from Sweden, so in total, there were 10 students and 15 adults.

During the first day, we got to visit the 4D Frame head office. It was really cool to see all the constructions and also meet the founder of 4D Frame. The next day, we got a chance to practice building a little bit before the competition. The task for the competition was to build a “roller coaster” for a marble, using a foam board as a base. It was a bit hard since we never had built using a foam board before, but we prepared as much as we could.

Then it was competition day! During the opening ceremony they played our video on the big screen four times! There were about 60 teams in our category. We sat on the floor and built for two hours. It was hard because it was so stressful, but it was also really fun. We got to work as a team and even though many of the teams from other countries had prepared and practiced much more, we did our best. We placed 12th in the competition, and won a bronze medal. Even though we didn’t win, we were proud!

The remaining days, we spent being tourists in Korea. We got to take part of the culture and see the capital, which was really cool and interesting. For example, we visited a palace, the Korean Folk Village where we took part of old Korean traditions, and the Samsung D’light exhibition. We also got to go up in both the Seoul Tower and Lotte Tower, which was amazing. The Korean food was very good but very spicy!

One day, we visited a Korean high school where we got to work in teams with the students and come up with inventions. It was really fun and we all learnt a lot, at the same time as we got new friends!

We were invited to dinner with some pre-school teachers, and another day with the founder of 4D Frame and the president of the competition. We were treated as VIPs and the Korean people were so nice to us.

Overall, we learnt a lot that we can take with us in life, for example we practiced our team working skills and working under stress. It was also an eye-opener to see how much you can do with 4D Frame, and we learnt more about technology. We got many new friends, both koreans and swedes from all over the country. We are really happy about the trip!

From the Principal

Winter is coming, but not yet...

When I for the first time in many months enter a blogpost the motto of House Stark in Game of Thrones comes to mind. Time flies and it is little over a month since we started the academic year 2017-2018. An intense but very energizing start to meet all old and new students. 

We have grown rapidly from three to twentyfour classes since 2013 but now we have reached our end state and can start focus on consolidating en developing the school at this size. A lot of new staff have joined IES Lund this year but with some few exceptions we have our old seasoned staff back and it feels very good to have that stability now when we are a big school. We will continue to focus on impoved communication, differentiation in teaching and we will work more with grit and growth mindset with our students

We are just finishing this years round of parent meetings. It is always a pleasure to meet all you parents and we are extremely proud of the outcome of last years survey where 98% of the our parents would recommend IES Lund to an other parent. We will continue to improve the school to meet your confidence in us. Winter is coming but we still have a beautiful fall and wonderful challenges lies ahead....