School Calendars

Call Us

+86 029 88693780

The Principal's Newsletter

Hanova’s tree is a symbol of unity and internationalism

By Mr Martin Hughes

Dear Parents and

Unity and Internationalism. Hanova’s logo is a representation of a tree.  A tree was chosen as our symbol as it represents a living growing body made up of many different parts all working to a common goal – that of learning together to live and work in an international world.  The different parts of the tree represent the different roles students, staff and parents have in school and the 14 nationalities here.  Just as a tree continues to grow and develop so we all do too – lifelong learning for all our community.

Some of you will have noticed a strange wooden tree in the window of our entrance hall.  This is our Unity Tree, designed by Mrs Varjavandi.  The wrappings for it were started way back at the beginning of May 2012 when some of our parents and staff first met up for a barbeque.

The first International Day at Hanova was a big success last Wednesday.  Work proceeded on the Unity Tree, which was delivered just before the International Day.  Many donations of unwanted fabrics and yarns had been turned into multi-coloured wrappings by the students at the Thursday afternoon extra curricular activity (ECA), in addition to those made at the Sports and Music Saturday party at the start of the Autumn holiday, and the wrappings already made by some mothers and their friends before last summer.  This required a great leap of faith for all involved, as no one knew what the final outcome would be.  At last work has begun preparing the tree to take the wrappings, covering the edges of the branches and the base with fabric. The tree should be complete by the start of the next ECA block.  It represents the unity of us all working together and it is paralleled in many ways by the school – it required real vision at the start of the project, it involved many hands, it has overcome many hiccoughs. Not least of these has been the difficulty in getting it made – coming together at the end through determination and finally the generous intervention of one of our parents.

Without you, our parents, the school would not exist.  I want to thank you for your continuous and generous support and your enthusiasm and trust.  I only discovered last week that another parent had donated the two table tennis tables near the Dragoncourt – thank you.

One of the other experiences on International Day was the chance to be part of the creation of a large map of the world. Every student, from the youngest to the oldest, did their bit to make a beautiful map in green and blue – every hand was on it. It was shown at the assembly two days later, the first time that most saw the completed map.  We hope to put it on display in the school.

Yellow River Soup Kitchen. Not only do we want to encourage generosity within our community through dedication of all its members but we want the students to extend that “being able to make a positive difference” to the wider community whether that is local to Xi’an, China or internationally.

As part of their Community and Service programme the middle and senior year students visited the Yellow River Soup Kitchen last Friday to help out.  We also arranged for another school from Qingdao to join us there.  Thank you for all of the donations you sent in to school, which were taken along last Friday.  They were also pleased to receive our cash donation collected from parents, students, staff and friends of ¥1,920 enough for one week’s worth of meals at the Kitchen.

Nursery, Reception Y1 Art Exhibition. There is a small, but lovely art exhibition in the Art room (room A211) on the second floor.  This is open to visitors at any time we are open.  Come along and have a look at our youngest students developing artwork, if you are in school.  The last day for the exhibition is November 2nd.

A Christmas Carol. We are very pleased to be putting on a midwinter drama production, a Christmas Carol in December.  Many of our students have not had the opportunity of performing in school before so we are keen to put this on.  Auditions are being held on Thursday and Friday this week as explained in an earlier letter.  This will be a great opportunity, and we hope a lot of fun, to take part in and develop both confidence and some acting, singing, dancing or stage production skills.

Parents Consultations. As you will know from previous Principal’s newsletters 3 way and 2 way parent, teacher and student consultations are taking place on Thursday, 1st and Friday, 2nd November.  Appointment times are available between 2-6:30pm on 1st and 2-5pm on 2nd.  We really hope to see a parent of every student during these times. You should have received a letter about this on Wednesday.  Please return it as soon as possible to reserve those appointment times.

Uniform. You should have received a letter about school uniform also on Wednesday. The colder weather seems to be upon us and the heating has even been on in a few rooms this week. The students have been coming dressed appropriately so they are comfortable and able to access the learning and activities inside and out in a normal school day.

Until now it has not been possible for them all to wear uniform as we have had a few teething problems with suppliers. The exception to this has been the senior years students who have been coming in business dress.

We think it is important for the students to take pride in their school. We think being dressed practically and smartly helps them to behave well and work hard.  Therefore we would like all students to wear their uniform from the beginning of November, Monday 5th.

You should receive the winter uniform this week.  If you need any clarification please do not hesitate to contact May Liu.

Professional Development. We undertake Professional Development every day through collaborative meetings and the weekly Staff Teaching and Learning meeting.  Last Monday we had a whole day for training primarily focused on assessment.  It included work on iBooks Author and related programs such as iMovie, our curriculum management software, Managebac as well as discussing a number of issues that have arisen on sharing school practices.

Best regards,

Martin Hughes


Forthcoming events


Thursday, 25th and Friday, 26th   Beijing Star Books Book Fair

Thursday, 25th and Friday, 26th   Christmas Carol auditions

Saturday, 27th                               Visit of students from Bradford Grammar School, England


Thursday, 1st and Friday, 2nd       Parent Consultations

Thursday, 1st to Sunday, 4th         Korean Boarders’ Parents Visit

Monday, 5th                                  All students to wear uniform

Friday, 9th                                      Duathlon – more information to follow next week


About the Author

Martin Hughes

Former School Principal

Mr Martin Hughes was the founding Principal of Hanova from 2012-15. Prior to his time at Hanova, he already had 23 years of experience as Principal in the UK and China at five different schools - including posts at Wuxi EtonHouse and EtonHouse's flagship Suzhou school. During his time as founding Principal at Hanova, he helped support the initial IB Diploma Programme authorisation (2014) and used his educational vision to help plant our then brand new school on a firm foundation. Under his leadership, Hanova's motto emerged, "Enabling children to become independent, creative and lifelong learners!"

More News & Events

© 2012-24 Xi’an Hanova International School. All Rights Reserved.