Week 6 - Term 2 Newsletter 2021
Thank you to everyone who came down with us yesterday and celebrate Australia's Biggest Morning Tea beside the river. It was wonderful to come together as a school community out in our local community and celebrate such a worthy cause. Australia's Biggest Morning Tea is a national event that raises vital funds to make a big difference for those impacted by cancer, which is something very close to a number of our families or friends.
Sorry Day & Reconciliation Week
This week we were also able to come together to celebrate 'Sorry Day' and the beginning of what is National Reconciliation Week. Sorry Day is an opportunity to pay tribute to Stolen Generations members and remember those who have passed into the Dreaming. Having a national Sorry Day was a recommendation of the 1997 ‘Bringing Them Home’ report. Thank you to our student leaders for leading us in this liturgy and reminding us of the importance of acknowledging our past and, more importantly, ensuring our future is one where we collectively build relationships and communities that value Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples histories, cultures, and futures.
Reconciliation Australia’s theme for 2021, More than a word. Reconciliation takes action, urges the reconciliation movement towards braver and more impactful action. Next week our students will be partaking in some acitivites around reconciliation as well as having one of our local elders, Aunty Lenore, come in and speak to our students.
School Communication - SZApp
Just a reminder that if all families could please download the app SZAPP onto their devices that would be much appreciated. Unfortunately, we still have over half our families yet to register with our APP. Whilst email contact will still occur it is our intent to align all of our whole-school communication through the Schoolzine APP (SZAPP) & emails to be reduced and texts (excluding absences) will no longer occur.
Once you have registered our code is 1578.
Please visit the following link for step by step instructions: https://www.schoolzine.com/szapp-installation
Semester 1 Reporting
At this time of the year, teachers are finalising students' assessments and Semester One reports. I frequently hear them talking and discussing work covered, results gained and effort applied to decide on a final grade. Reporting is not an easy process, and there is much time, thought, and deliberation put into the final result. It becomes an even more difficult task when teachers are required to teach all day and then work on their reports after school and on weekends.
I thank all staff for their commitment to ensuring that students' reports are a true and accurate reflection of their progress and encourage you, when these go out later in the term, to make a time to meet and discuss your child's report with their classroom teacher.
Little Joeys Transition Program- Semester 2
This is just a reminder that we are scheduled for our Little Joeys Program to begin early next term (Friday 30th July - Week 3) & that we are still seeking expressions of interest from parents in enrolling their child in this program. I am asking families to help promote the program, and if you know a family within the community with a child that is school-age in 2021, encourage them to seek an enrolment form from the school or make a time to have a school tour with me.
This program is crucial to supporting our future Kindy enrolments. We would appreciate as much support as possible from our families to ensure it continues as part of our school.
Leaders of Learning
Learning in Infants
Kindergarten and Stage 1 have been exploring different areas of measurement this week. Kindergarten has been learning to describe and compare lengths and distances using everyday language, and Stage 1 have been learning to measure, record, and compare areas.
In learning about these critical concepts, students have engaged in Rich Tasks. In a Rich Task, students are provided opportunities to struggle with ideas and develop and use various mathematical processes. These tasks usually have a problem-solving context and open-ended. The tasks provide a challenge for all students and give them opportunities to be in, what we call, the Learning Pit. Teachers use the graphic below to explain that when we are doing something hard, we have to persist and try different ways to get out of the pit (complete the tasks). This confusion allows for growth and conceptual development. Students are given a range of opportunities to engage in independent thinking time, collaborative problem solving with a partner, and small, mixed ability groups.
Learning in Primary -
Collaborative learning has been shown to not only develop higher-level thinking skills in students but boost their confidence and self-esteem as well. Collaborative learning is a method of active learning that relies on the principle of two or more students coming together to work towards a common goal. Working together can improve social and interpersonal skills together with learning how to work with various types of learners and develop their leadership skills.
The world in which we live increasingly shares its resources, ideas and information for the common good. At St. Joseph's, collaboration is valued and promoted with all learners, that is, staff and students. As we move into a more collaborative world, the principles and personality traits gained from peer-to-peer education and engagement are more important than ever.
All our students are involved in collaborative activities at certain times throughout the day. For example;
- in English, our students listen and learn from their peers by providing feedback to each other in writing.
- in Maths, students play cooperative games, take turns, share resources and share solutions which provides many and varied 'model's of learning
- in Religious Education in Stage 3, students are collaboratively planning liturgies
- in Science, students are creating gardens and sharing the responsibility for the care of the plants.
All these experiences provide our students with opportunities to prepare for successfully working with others in further education and employment.
Mission & Values
Giinagay - hello.
Last week I was fortunate enough to attend training that Aunty Doreen ran at Lismore, where she showcased and explained a new resource that has been created for all schools in the Diocese - An Aboriginal Spirituality Kit. Within the kit are a range of resources that can be utilised for school use in liturgies and ceremonies, and this week we were able to use some items from the kit in our National Sorry Day Liturgy. In our photo, Mrs Bobbie Waghorn uses a coolamon (women's business) filled with Clarence River Water to conduct a Water Blessing at the end of our Liturgy.
In our prayer space, we used a beautiful new candle that replicates the Aboriginal flag, a timber coolamon which women use for carrying items (including babies!), gumnut Rosary Beads, clap sticks, a basket, a smoking bowl (men's business) and an unadorned wooden cross. The cross will be painted after our students consult with our elders and decide upon icons and artwork which reflects Yaegl country. We look forward to utilising these wonderful items in our future liturgies to ensure Aboriginal spirituality is acknowledged and honoured.
Mercy Value - Hospitality and Service
The students had an opportunity this week to experience the Mercy Values of Hospitality and Service when they handed out biscuits to the people of Maclean in support of Australia’s Biggest Morning Tea and the work of the Cancer Council Australia. Together we shared morning tea with our families at the Boulevard beside the beautiful Clarence River. The students were amazed at how good it felt to show Hospitality to a 'stranger' and also to give something away without asking for anything in return, experiencing the value of ‘service’ firsthand. I have included some of the reflections from the students after returning to school;
- I felt warm and fuzzy giving out the biscuits.
- It made me proud and happy be sharing hospitality with the community.
- It felt great just saying 'hello' to someone you don't know.
- When I gave people biscuits, seeing them happy made me happy.
- When an old man took a biscuit, I felt happy and glad.
- We generously gave people we didn't know biscuits, and this made me feel warm and happy inside.
- I felt kindness inside.
- We gave out biscuits so we can help people who have cancer, and we want to do this because we want to be like Jesus.
Thank you to the Maclean community for making us feel welcome.
Biggest Morning Tea
Class News - Stage 3
This term Stage 3 have been working extremely hard in and out of the classroom. In Mathematics this week children have been looking at fractions and are deepening their understanding of how fractions can be used to solve word problems.
In English, we have been focusing on persuasive texts. Last week the children we challenged to persuade the class whether technology or sport should be banned. The children worked together and then presented their arguments to the class. Here are some snippets
Technology consists of many threats to your physical and mental wellbeing; Obsession, Cyberbullying and antisocial behaviours are just some of the effects that electronics have on kids. These threats are some of the reasons we must ban technology from schools. - Mahala Hitchings
Technology is disastrous for you because it destroys your eyes and it also exterminates your brain cells. When you play on technology for too long, you become dependent, and you want to play more and more. Your emotions go catapulting when you’re told to get off, and you become either really sad and have a waterfall of tears or have an eruption of anger. Technology doesn’t give you exercise, which means you have a higher risk of unhealthy habits, which will lead to death! - Nathaniel Frame
How would you feel if you were playing a game of soccer on the oval and you got a soccer ball to your face? Wouldn't that hurt! Why do we have to go outside and play in the sun and get sunburnt? Why do we have to waste our school funds on silly sports equipment that never gets used? We should stop sports in school. - Makenzee Dahlenburg
In Religion, the students have been working with teachers to co-create a class liturgy for Pentecost. Students used the knowledge they are developing of the key signs, symbols and rituals of the Liturgical Calendar to come together to celebrate the presence of God in our lives.
Miss Ayres and Mrs Mclennan
Congratulations to the following students recognised at this fortnight's Awards Assembly:
Principal Awards: Bella Camilleri, Jack Kirkland, Sarah Afzal, Kayla Ellis
(Year 1 & 2)
(Year 3 & 4)
(Year 5 & 6)
Pastoral Care - School Counsellor
Exploring Character Strengths – TEAMWORK
“United we stand, divided we fall.”
What is Teamwork?
Teamwork means you are loyal and dedicated to the group you are part of. It means you can work together as a group, not argue and knock each other down. If you are growing teamwork, you do your share and work hard for the group's success.
What does it look like in practice?
- We can work side by side with others in a peaceful and constructive way
- We know we need to work together, not against each other, to get things done.
- We problem-solve together, hearing everyone’s points of view
- We cheer on people when they are in our game
- We understand that we don’t need to be ‘right’ or to ‘win’ and that working toward a goal together is more important.
How can we encourage Teamwork in our children?
- Encourage collaborative games - Children learn during play, so try to get your child involved in games where teamwork is key to success. Emphasize to your child that the focus is not on competition but on working together
- Look for everyday opportunities for teamwork. - Aside from collaborative games, there are plenty of cooperation opportunities in daily life. Activities that may seem minor can have a great impact on a child learning about their world. For example, if your children love pizza, you can have a build-your-own-pizza night at home and have the siblings add their favourite toppings together.
- Praise cooperative behaviour - When your child is cooperating well with another person, praising them will help them understand that teamwork is good behaviour. For example, you might thank your child for playing nicely with a friend or express admiration of a drawing your children created together.
Click here for some more information on modelling and teaching teamwork.
Kate Naylor – School Counsellor & Art Therapist
Pastoral Care - School Chaplain
SVDP Winter Appeal
St Vincent De Paul Winter Appeal is here again. On Thursday, 10th June, we will be serving either Chicken and Veggie soup or Veggie soup with a roll for $5. All proceeds from our Soup Day are going to the St Vincent Winter Appeal. This Winter Vinnies Appeal will provide emergency relief to people at risk and experiencing homelessness. Your donation will help Vinnies volunteers rebuild lives. Students can wear pyjamas and donate a gold coin, even if they do not purchase soup for lunch.
Please make sure your child's order is back by the 3rd of June as preparations and orders will be done on this day.
Seasons for Growth
Seasons for Growth in Stage 3 offers children and young people a safe space to come together and share their experiences of change and loss.
The Children and Young People’s Program has a safe and engaging curriculum structure that incorporates a wide range of age-appropriate activities involving drawing, role-play, stories, discussion, playdough, music and journal activities. Our group runs in the library every Friday afternoon for 40 minutes. Students are asked to listen to each other, be respectful to each other, and share only their stories.
Mothers Day High Tea
A special belated thank you to Rachael and Kerry for helping to make sandwiches, Louise for brewing the coffee and Cathy for her beautiful tablecloths.
Juana Mead - School Chaplain
Lismore Diocesan Cross Country Carnival
Congratulations to Tasmyn Norris and Reuben Lewis, who travelled to McAuley Catholic College in Grafton on Wednesday 26th May to compete in the Lismore Diocesan Cross Country Carnival. Both runners put in commendable performances and should be proud of their achievements in a sport that requires endurance, strategy, resilience and courage.
Reuben Lewis: 24th 12/13 yrs Boys Tasmyn Norris: 20th 11 yrs Girls
School Athletics Carnival
A reminder our Athletics Carnival will be held on Friday 4th June (Wk 7). All children will assemble at school at 9 am, then walk to WHERRETT PARK OVAL in their House groups: Gibraltar (Green), Bundjalung (Blue), Yuraygir (Yellow).
Thankfully, we can invite families to partake in this day under the following conditions:
- All parents/carers who attend must digitally sign in using our APP/QR Code Facilities.
- Parents who show signs or symptoms of flu-like illness are not to be present
- Maintain physical distance (1.5m apart unless from the same household)
- Follow good hygiene and cleaning practices (i.e. use hand sanitiser on arrival)
From this carnival children, 8 years and over may qualify for the Clarence Zone Athletics Carnival, held at Coffs Harbour on Friday 16th July (Term 3: week 1). The team will be announced at school on Monday and the presentation of individual ribbons and the annual Athletics trophy to the winning house.