School Blog

Masterclass Monday with Mastio

On Monday the 23rd of January, we had the privilege of hosting the 2015 MasterChef winner, Sandra Mastio. The energetic and passionate chef shared her Fish Taco recipe with a group of enthusiastic 8th Graders, who were dressed for the occasion in their Chartwells white chefs’ coats.

A wide range of fresh vibrant seasonal vegetables, fresh herbs and a fresh Pollock fish (the star of the day) were on display and set the scene of what was to come.

MasterChef isn’t MasterChef without a challenge? The learners were put into groups and put their senses to the test. Taste is a full sense experience, we taste with our eyes, ears, nose, hands and mouth. That Is why Chef Mastio enjoys vibrant and fresh produce and always uses what is fresh or seasonal in her meals. Learners were challenged to guess the herb. 5 herbs were brought in for learners to look at, touch, taste and smell. The 1st herb reminded them of Pizza, Oregano. The 2nd reminded some of something Italian, Basil. The 3rd was fresh, Mint. The 4th wasn’t a crowd favorite and a little controversial, you guessed it, Coriander. The final herb identified seemed to be a sweet smelling familiar herb, Rosemary.

The learners were given a quick fish lesson. They learned how to identify a fresh fish and the different parts of a fish.

There was great excitement when our junior chefs started creating masterpieces. Fresh lemon zest wafting through the kitchen, sounds of sizzling fish frying in the pan and the display of colour and texture was simply amazing. Watching words taken from the recipe come alive on plates as they calmly prepared. The taste test is always the best part. The crunch of the fish and red cabbage and explosion of fresh flavours was the outcome of a job well done!

Who is Chef Mastio?

What made you choose to visit IES Kista?

MSC, Marine Stewardship Council and Compass made it possible for me to visit IES Kista, as the school serves certified fish. It’s always interesting to visit an English school and such a diverse school. Food brings cultures together and food is so diverse, just like this school.  She was excited to work with the learners today as it’s a big deal for her to work with children.

What’s your favorite dish?

Pizza and Pasta Bolognese, that rich flavorsome Bolognese that cooks for hours. Basically any Italian food.

Is there something you really don’t like?

Oysters and Kalles kaviar, it’s like licking a rock! A taste that never leaves your mouth.

Where from do you get your inspirations?

From the seasons, the colours, scents and the fresh food each season brings. I love winter as it is a challenging season. You are forced to find fresh, vibrant food and you are always thinking how to make food better, finding different ways to cook food.  For today’s dish I will be cooking fish, so I thought to pair the dish with something kids love, tacos!

Do you have a food memory trigger?

Believe it or not, I didn’t grow up in a food culture. My mom would make us sandwiches. The one dish that brings back good memories is Swedish cheesecake, ostkaka.

How to raise healthy eating among young kids?

The challenge with making healthy food for kids is to find interesting ways to “hide” the vegetables as well as introducing one a few foods at a time. It takes 17 tries of a food to truly know if you like it or not. Keep it simple and don’t overwhelm kids with vegetable buffets but instead introduce food bit by bit.

Any tips for a nice 50 SEK dish?                                     

Keeping in line with the season, soup is always a winner. You can make any soup interesting by adding herbed oils, texture or even a little yogurt instead of cream to balance the flavours.

Things you may not know about Chef Mastio

·         She only started cooking in 2014 and won MasterChef in 2015

·         She listens to the Rocky Balboa Soundtrack before any competition

What would you like to teach people?

You can do anything you set your mind to. You just need to do it and not be afraid. You have to work with what you have got.

IES Kista critics…

“I give the meal an 11/10”

“It kind of tastes fish fingers and chicken”

“I like that it was crispy on the outside and moist on the inside”

“Today’s food was very good. They must do this again”   

From the Principal

MasterChef Cookalong at IES Kista

Yesterday, on the 23rd of January, IES Kista had the honour of being visited by Sandra Mastio, the 2015 winner of Swedish MasterChef. Along with selected students from grade 8, she cooked a meal that combined healthy with popular: fish and tacos. Our school had specifically been chosen due to our MSC certified kitchen. MSC stands for Marine Stewardship Council, which is an organization that makes sure that the fish we serve at our school is sustainable.

Mr Florén,representing Chartwells , Ms Mastio representing MSC Sweden and Principal McGowan

The lunch was a great success, the students loved it. The 8th graders that got to cook the meal, following Ms. Mastio’s recipe, also enjoyed and appreciated their time in the Home Economics kitchen. The cookalong was supervised by Mr. Brunelle, our Home Economics teacher, and Ms. Mastio herself. We also had visitors from the Swedish MSC office, that had come to IES Kista to attend the cookalong.

The students worked on their preparations from 9:00 and were done cooking by 12:30. They left the kitchen, after having cleaned it thoroughly, about an hour later.

Grade 8 students ready to cook

We would like to thank Ms. Mastio for coming to us, all the way from Malmö, as well as the representatives from MSC Sweden and Chartwells of the Compass Group.


From the Principal

Riksdag Politician Visits IES Kista

On Friday 23 September, Internationella Engelska Skolan was pleased to welcome Riksdag Politician Maria Stockhaus. 

Since opening in August 2015, IES Kista has established a strong reputation as a school, creating a calm and safe environment where students can enjoy coming to school and focus upon their academic progress. 

Ms Stockhaus, in her role as a parliamentarian, wanted to see first-hand the work being done at IES Kista, and spent the morning visiting lessons and speaking to students about their experience at the school. 

Throughout the course of the morning, Ms Stockhaus met students from all six grades at the school, observing lessons such as English, PE and Woodwork. She also had a chef’s tour of the school restaurant, and finished the day by taking part in a DNA science experiment with our grade 9 students.

Everyone is a Scientist!

Dear IES families,

Science, like all processes, is fluid, dynamic, and changing. Having said that, it is also true that science has some constants that serve as its foundation. The foundations of science include a respect for past learning, a systematic approach to new learning, honesty, curiosity, and accuracy.

Keeping all this in mind our year began with a short introduction to the Scientific Method and the principle tools and techniques of a scientist.  Most of the students from grade 4-9 imagined scientist working with chemicals, some drew them working in design labs: designing clothes, cars, make-up etc. This was a pre-assessment task to know how many safety measures they think of while drawing the scientists working in labs. All the students drew scientist with lab coats and safety glasses while working in labs. This lead us to discuss about the lab safety rules and students made lab safety posters after discussing all the safety rules. We then talked about ‘Scientific Method’ and the steps to do the experiments. The ‘Scientific Method’ is not a rigid set of steps but is more of a systematic and critically reflective way of learning, documenting that learning, and then sharing it. While discussing the steps of ‘Scientific Methods’ students  came to the conclusion that everyone is a scientist when they employ the scientific process,no matter where they work, even for simple problem solving tasks Scientists are found in every discipline, such as biology, physics, chemistry, and environmental science; and psychology, education, history, and even religion. And that was a ‘Eureka’ moment for them!!


When the students learn how to employ the scientific process, they become better problem solvers in their own lives. And this is how we started our school year!


Grade 4s started with ‘The Forests’ , they are learning about different types of forest, elements of forests and why are they important for humans. They wondered: why the forests are green? What kind of fruits do the forests have? For the labs they collected leaves of various shapes, sizes, and colors from the ground and found out that different types of trees have different types of leaves.That’s one way of telling one tree from another, and they each make a different pattern when you make a rubbing from them.They then conducted a comparison investigation by looking at their collected leaves to find out the differences and similarities, what do the leaves feel like? Do they have hairs? Or teeth? Why are they green? How does water go to the top of the tree.

Grade 5s started with ‘Human body’ they are learning about body parts , organs and organ systems and how they work together to make complex human body look like a easy process.

Grade 6s first unit  is an introduction to Earth and Space Science a perfect time to leave this planet we call home and explore the wonders of the Universe. They are learning about how The Earth came into being and what are the components of Solar system besides planets like stars, comets, asteroids, meteors , our galaxy Milky Way, constellations. They also are  learning about reasons for seasons, day and night etc

Grade 7s revised Force taught in grade 6 to understand the first topic Density, mass and volume. They learnt that the mass remains same while weight changes on different planets outside the Earth’s orbit. They then learnt how density is affected by heat.

Grade 8s started with Food Chemistry, what are the components of the food we eat and how the energy transfers. They also found out about different amount of sugar present in different types of food and why do we need sugar and why added sugar in not good for our health.

Grade 9s started with basic unit of life, cell, learnt about cell division and now moving on to genetics. The lab lessons were focused on DNA extraction.

Looking forwards for a great year ahead with IES families,

IES Kista Science team

Sharpening Young Minds in Modern Foreign Languages

With the start of every school year at IES Kista, we proudly welcome our Year 6 students to their first Modern Foreign Language lessons. This year, we have 92 new learners taking Spanish, 45 students beginning to learn French, and 16 children eager to speak German.

Learning a new language requires a variety of skills but it also hones your cognitive and problem-solving abilities. Studies have shown that students who flex their language muscles improve in subjects as diverse as reading and mathematics. Exposure to different cultures also enhances students’ abilities to understand others and communicate with people they encounter throughout their lives. Plus, it makes travelling much easier!

The cultural element

One way the Languages Department likes to keep our students motivated to continue learning when the grammar lessons get tedious is to include group activities and cultural explorations. In French, we are listening to new songs every week as part of our “Mardis Musique” or “Music Tuesdays” initiative. Sometimes, these catchy songs help us remember vocabulary or verb conjugations. In the higher year groups, we often use the song’s lyrics as a way to learn new words, check for understanding, and gain a deeper appreciation of francophone culture. In German, Year 7 students have already explored different countries where their language of choice is spoken. And in Spanish, students in Year 8 are reviewing their knowledge of Spain’s main landmarks and geography.

The pedagogical model

At IES Kista, we are firm believers in the pedagogical model. We understand that when students get to choose the level at which they learn, they are more committed to their own progress. They feel safer taking risks in the classroom, and this positive learning environment promotes their social and academic growth. This year, the Languages Department is also using the pedagogical model in Year 7 and 8 French and Spanish lessons. We hope that those who want to focus on building their vocabulary and comprehension skills can do so at their own pace, while others continue to improve their writing and interactions in their new language. Of course, some learn quicker than others, so rest assured that these pedagogical groups will be re-assessed in January.

Coming soon

Looking forward, we will be celebrating World Languages Day during Week 39. Previously known as the European Day of Languages, this annual celebration seeks to promote interest in learning languages and multiculturalism. Keep your eyes open for some fun activities coming soon to IES Kista!

From all of us in Modern Foreign Languages, hej då! Tschüß! ¡Hasta pronto! Au revoir!