Week 6 - Term 4 Newsletter 2022
Dear Families and Friends,
After much thought and consideration, please see below our staffing and classroom arrangements for 2022. I acknowledge there are some changes to our existing structures. Our spaces have been structured based on current student numbers and available staff funding for 2022. It is important to note that there may be some slight adjustments of moving from a Stage-based environment (i.e. Stage 2) to a Year cohort (i.e. Year 3 & 4) if new enrolments occur.
- Assistant Principal (Learning & Teaching) - Mrs Deb Bailey
- Leader of Mission - Mrs Deb Mullins
- Kindergarten - Miss Alex Lovegrove
- Stage 1 - Mrs Isabelle McMahon & Mrs Amanda Smith
- Stage 2 - Mrs Carly Mclennan & Ms Phoebe Zietsch
- Year 5 - Miss Lauren Ross
- Year 6 - Mrs Louise Senz & Mrs Deb Mullins (Fri)
- Infants Literacy & Numeracy Intervention & RFF - Mr Luke Hitchings
- Primary Literacy & Numeracy Intervention & RFF - Mrs Deb Mullins
- Teacher Assistants - Mrs Bobbie Waghorn, Miss Ava Bowcock, Mrs Juana Mead & Mr Brendan Randall
Covid Guidelines & increased cases
We are seeing a rise in COVID-19 transmissions within the community, and a large amount of flu-like sickness in our classrooms, with a peak of cases expected in early December. Please be reminded that students and staff CAN NOT attend school if they are:
- showing any symptoms of COVID-19. These include fever, cough, sore throat, shortness of breath, runny nose, loss of smell/taste, muscle/joint pains, diarrhoea, nausea/vomiting, extreme tiredness, unexplained chest pain or conjunctivitis (eye infection).
- It is no longer a requirement to self-isolate if you test positive for COVID-19. However, if your child is unwell, displaying any COVID-19 or cold and flu-like symptoms at any time, your child CAN NOT attend school and should undertake a rapid antigen test.
- If the rapid antigen test is positive and your child is unwell and/or experiencing any symptoms, your child CAN NOT attend school.
If the rapid antigen test is positive and your child is not feeling unwell and not displaying or experiencing any symptoms, your child CAN attend school under the following conditions:
- the school office is informed of the positive test result, AND
- your child (over 12 years old) wears a mask for a period of 7 days in all indoor settings.
The best place for our students to learn is in the classroom, but the safety and well-being of students and staff is our number one priority. We will continue to monitor the situation and appreciate your understanding & support in following the above guidelines. If you require RAT tests for your children, please don't hesitate to contact School Front Office.
I want to ask all families to make a concerted effort with their children around wearing our correct school uniform. I acknowledge at the end of the year, there can be, at times, a battle with some children wearing the correct uniform. However, over the last few weeks, there have been some noticeable lapses in our student's compliance with the uniform requirements as a whole. Please be particularly conscious of the following:
- Boys black shorts are to be plain black with no emblems, brands or football club shorts.
- Girls are to wear maroon skorts, not black tights/jeans. If it is cold, maroon stockings or track pants must be worn.
- Hair attire, i.e. scrunchies, are to be of school colour, i.e. maroon, white or yellow.
- All students are to wear black school shoes Monday - Thursday (joggers or leather are acceptable).
Moving forward, I have asked all teachers to be consistent and persist in enforcing our Uniform Policy.
End of Year Activity Days
We will celebrate the end of 2022 with "Activity Days" on Wednesday 14th - Friday 16th (Week 10). These organised days will be fun-filled and a wonderful way to celebrate our school year and build a sense of belonging amongst our staff & students. Separate 'Events' will be published in Compass in Week 8, requesting permission for both Maclean Pool and Yamba Bowling Club. We are conscious of placing unwanted financial pressure on families at this time of the year, and thus there will be no cost involved, with all costs covered by the school.
- Wednesday 14th - Christmas Activities & Christmas Carnival
- Thursday 15th - Water Activities at Maclean Pool & Movies in classrooms
- Friday 16th - Yamba Bowling Club (Rock Climbing, Putt Putt Golf, Ten Pin Bowling & Lawn Bowls)
Leaders of Learning
Learning in K - 6: A Snapshot of Spelling
At our school, we aim for consistency in practice and have 'Whole-school approaches' to learning within specific Key Learning Areas. In English, we use the 'Soundwaves' program from Kindergarten to Year 6. This program is written specifically for Australian classrooms. It follows a logical and thorough scope and sequence organised around the 43 phonemes (sounds) of Australian English. The graphemes (a letter or letter combination) are used to represent them in written language. Instruction builds from Kindergarten to Year 6, starting with simple phoneme-grapheme relationships before exploring more complex relationships, morphology and etymology.
It is informed by research on the best practices for teaching spelling, and the program incorporates four key areas of teaching:
- Phonemic awareness: the ability to work with phonemes.
- Synthetic phonics: phonics instruction that involves teaching phoneme-grapheme relationships.
- Morphology: knowledge of the meaningful parts of words: prefixes, suffixes, and Greek and Latin roots.
- Etymology: understanding of word origins and history.
This week our photo gallery shows the various spelling lessons occurring in the English Block.
Mrs Mullins and Mrs Bailey
Mission & Values
Mercy Value: Courage
Matthew 14:27 “But Jesus immediately said to them: ‘Take courage! It is I. Don't be afraid.’ ”
Courage is one of our Mercy Values and is often the most challenging to enact. Courage means facing hard or scary situations, even when you feel afraid or uncomfortable. Courage helps you face temptations and be strong enough to do the right thing, even when your friends don’t. Courage is also one of the gifts of the Holy Spirit.
This week, Year 4 were challenged to act courageously during their faith retreat by interacting with people they don’t usually choose as partners, people they don't usually play with, and people that are not inside their circle of close friends. It takes courage to show ‘Hospitality’ to strangers, and even though the students know each other fairly well, they worked out of their comfort zone to show ‘friendship’ to all...they were courageous!
Year Four Accendere Retreat
‘And now I give you a new commandment: love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. If you have love for one another, then everyone will know that you are my disciples.’ (John 13: 34-35)
This week Year 4 participated in the Accendere faith retreat based on the scripture above from John 13. The theme for the retreat was Friendship, and through games, activities and stories, they learned how to be a good friend.
Jesus loved his friends, the disciples, but he also loved the poor, the outcast, the sick and the lonely. Through the parable The Good Samaritan, they learned how we can follow His example and show love to others, even those we don't know well. The way we treat people, accepting and including others as Jesus did, especially our friends and the other students in our class and school, is a way we can show kindness. They learned that all acts of kindness, no matter how big or small, make the world a better place. Kindness is doing what you can, where you are, with what you have, and in return, Kindness makes us strong.
Thanks to Miss Ross for assisting with leading the retreat. The kids had a great, busy day, and it was lovely to have a whole day to be with our friends.
Liturgical Calendar - Advent
Advent is the start of the Liturgical year, and this week our classes have commenced their Religious Education units on Advent. Advent is the period of four Sundays before Christmas. Advent means 'Coming' in Latin. This is the coming of Jesus into the world. Catholics use the four Sundays and weeks of Advent to prepare and remember the real meaning of Christmas. There are three meanings of 'coming' that Christians describe in Advent. The first, and most thought of, happened about 2000 years ago when Jesus came into the world as a baby to live as a man and die for us. The second can happen now as Jesus wants to come into our lives now. And the third will happen in the future when Jesus comes back to the world as King and Judge, not a baby.
Advent is a great way to show kindness to others. Here are some suggestions you may like to encourage with your child/ren.
- Donate an item for our Vinnies Christmas Appeal
- Hold the door for someone
- Let someone go ahead of you in line
- Write a letter to a friend or relative
- Make someone laugh
Parish School Mass - Sunday 20 November
I warmly invite all families and friends to our Parish School Mass on Sunday, 20th November 8.30 am, at St. Mary’s Church, Maclean.
If your child is attending and would like to assist in the Mass, the following roles are available:
Readers for Prayers of the Faithful
Please let me know by email if you would like your child to assist.
Our Principal's Award winners are:
- Kindy - Max Cook
- Stage 1 - Noa Chapman
- Stage 2 - Oskar Bailey
- Year 5 - Tate Anderson
- Year 6 - Beau Green
Our Class Award winners are:
Class News - Stage 2
During term 4, Stage Two explored and examined how to write various poetic forms. We have composed Kenning's and Haiku poems and recently just finished our Ballads based on a time when we were brave. The students have done a tremendous job after co-constructing the criteria and setting themselves high standards to achieve. It was wonderful to see them incorporate a range of poetic devices like rhyme, alliteration and repetition and use similes and metaphors to build a picture for their readers through imagery and comparison. Here are some of the fruits of their labour.
We look forward to continuing our work on poetry in the coming weeks. Keep your eye out for some creative verses in your Christmas cards this year!
Mrs Mclennan & Miss Ross
Upcoming Gala Days
Newcastle Permanent Soccer Gala Day
In Week 7, Stage 2 and Stage 3 will be attending the Newcastle Permanent School Soccer Gala day in Maclean on Friday, 25th November 2022. The format is 5 a side, so it will be a good opportunity for all students to get involved and develop their skills, as they should get plenty of touches on the ball. It will also be a good chance to interact with students from other schools in the area.
Evans River Rugby 7’s Gala Day
Evans River Rugby Club is proposing to run a 7-a-side rugby gala on Thursday, 8th December, in Evans Head. Rugby development officers will be in attendance on the day to run skills clinics to open the event and then referee the matches throughout the day. If you would like your child to participate in this event, can you please email Mr Hitchings or contact the front office so we can nominate a team if we get enough interest.
Due to the Newcastle Permanent Soccer Gala Day running on Friday, Week 7, school sport for primary students has been moved back one week. This means our primary swimming program will run until Week 8, and the school surfing program will run until week 9. This will allow us to complete the six weeks for each program.
Please note infant's swimming will run as normal and finish on Friday, Week 7.
Congratulations Olivia McIntyre
We want to congratulate Olivia McIntyre on her wonderful achievement in making the Polding Hockey Team. Olivia travelled to Tamworth to represent the Polding team in the NSW PSSA Hockey, which was held from 31 May to the 3rd June. This is an amazing accomplishment, and we are extremely proud to have a St Joseph’s student performing at this level. Well done, Olivia.
Pastoral Care - School Chaplain
St Vinnie's Christmas Appeal
St Vinnie's continues to rebuild strength in the men and women experiencing disadvantage this Christmas.
Thank you for your generous donations so far. We are starting to fill our second hampers in classes and invite families to continue to donate non-perishable food, new toys or money.
Hampers will be located in classrooms for students to place items. These hampers are given to families within Clarence to help make their Christmas special.
Mrs Juana Mead
Last Wednesday, we had a fun afternoon in the library celebrating all the students who completed the Premier’s Reading Challenge this year! Thanks to Mr Layland, who provided the movie ‘DC League of Super Pets’, and IGA for their delicious pizzas, supplied at a discount.
Borrowing for the year has now ceased, and we ask that all library books be returned ASAP. We have such wonderful resources at St Joeys, and we would like to have them available to future students for many years to come. A stocktake needs to be completed before the end of the year, and we appreciate your assistance.
The last Book Club catalogue for the year has been sent home. Issue 8 closes on the 30th Nov. A big thank you to all the parents and families who purchased books from Scholastic Book Club during the year, as funds go towards our school library to buy more resources.
Back to School NSW Voucher Program
The Parent Forum would like to share the news that the NSW government have introduced a 'Back to School' voucher program.
The Back to School NSW Vouchers program will provide 3 x $50 vouchers, totalling $150 for each eligible child. The vouchers can be used:
- towards the cost of school uniforms, shoes, bags, textbooks and stationery
- at registered businesses
- before 30 June 2023.
Applications open in December 2022.
Chairperson of the Parent Forum