Dear Parents and Carers,
This week we participated in the National Simultaneous Storytime with children from the preschool. The children had a terrific time reading Alpacas with Maracas by Matt Cosgrove. Well done to Skye, Amelia, Bas and Fergus who did a terrific job of leading the event.
Registration renewal process – we have also been hosting the registration renewal team during this week. Initial feedback has been very positive and it is always fabulous to hear that visiting principals are looking to take home ideas and tips that they have seen in action at our school, for use in their own communities. We are now awaiting the final reports. Once these are available, we will share feedback with you.
Although not related to the renewal process that we have been undertaking, there will be another opportunity to show case our school to other leaders within the Archdiocese during Term 3, when the Western Region principal’s meeting takes place here in Grenfell in August.
NAPLAN- there have been continuing discussions concerning the challenges of the first day of the NAPLAN assessment program last week.
We will be participating in the re-sit of the Yr. 5 writing and reading papers on Tuesday May 28. While it is not ideal to have to re-sit an assessment, this will be the best way to ensure that our students have the best opportunity to have their best efforts recognised in this year’s program.
When additional information is sent to us from ACARA, we will pass this on.
Technology - We are aware that some of the older students have been using a messaging platform known as Friends. As the families have purchased devices, parents have the opportunity to place blocks on their child’s access to these kinds of apps, and we encourage you to block this App as it can be the cause of disruptions to learning time, not to mention being the cause of late nights at home.
Earlier this week, I received a link to a clip that is well worth taking a look at – as it can and is often the case that we rely too heavily on devices, and not enough on human interactions.
Watch the clip and consider watching it again with your children.
Henry Lawson Festival- As you will be aware, we have been preparing for the various different events that take place during the upcoming Henry Lawson Festival.
At present, we are preparing for the play day to be held on Thursday June 6. Over the coming days, costumes will be finalised and information will be sent home to you.
We are also preparing an item for the Concert to on Friday evening. Additional information will be coming shortly.
We are also preparing a float for the festival parade. The theme for this year is an ode to winter. Our float will reflect an aspect of this theme.
Semester Reports - Our staff have also been undertaking the process of preparing semester reports for the first half of this year. These will be sent home at the end of week nine. Parent teacher conferences will take place during week ten.
Uniform – thank you to those families who have clear labels on uniforms items, this makes it easy for us to return jumpers etc.
Changes to routine - Thank you to those families who are keeping us informed when children are absent from school, or there are changes to the regular routine. Please be aware that we are required to keep the rolls up to date and that thorough explanation for absences enable us to do so.
This week my thoughts turn to my bother-in-law who is seriously ill in hospital. The prayer I have chosen is for all of us who have a loved one who is sick.
Lord, you bless us
with the gift of family.
We thank you for the love, strength, and consolation
that families give to those who are ill.
Turn your loving gaze upon us
and protect us each day, and today.
May this difficult moment
serve to unite the members of this family
so that each of us begins to be more concerned about others and becomes capable of more openly showing our love for each other
and our faith in You.
Lord, accompany us on our journey
and bless us with your grace
so we feel your closeness and aid
as we care for our ill family member(s),
and suffer and rejoice with them.
May the Lord’s loving presence give you and your loved ones comfort.
Classroom News – Year 5/6
What a great start to Term 2 it has been! The senior students who have visited the elderly at the Grenfell Multi-Purpose Centre thoroughly enjoyed the experience. The Athletics Carnival was a successful day for all participants with glorious weather. National Simultaneous Story Time was yet another fun event. The students listened to the hilarious story titled ‘Alpacas with Maracas’, written and illustrated by Matt Cosgrove, read simultaneously in libraries, schools, pre-schools, childcare centres, family homes, bookshops, and many other places, at the same time around the country. The following information will now provide an overview of what the students have been up to in class.
In Religious Education, the students will come to know Jesus Christ, human and divine, and ways to live out the Gospel. They will learn how the four Gospels are central to the prayer and teaching of the Church. The students will come to know that each of the Gospels provides a distinct insight into the person and ministry of Jesus as they were written by different authors for different audiences and purposes. They will learn that Jesus recognised the marginalised and responded to their needs, and how we are challenged to do the same. Finally, the students will be encouraged to respond to the pivotal message of Jesus, found in the Gospels, by acting for the marginalised in our community.
This term, in English, the students will be learning about Government. This is linked to our History unit. The tasks in all strands of English will relate to the topic. The students will learn to jointly, and then independently, construct a recount, an explanation and an exposition. The reading tasks will aim to develop the students’ reading skills, and deepen their understanding of the organisational structures of different types of texts. The students will also engage in speaking and listening tasks to develop their skills by participating in a class version of question time, and a debate, to name a few.
The students are also reading a great book called ‘The Honest Truth’, by Dan Gemeinhart, as our whole class read aloud. The story is about a boy, Mark, who is a fairly normal kid. He has a dog and a best friend, and he dreams of climbing a mountain one day. However, Mark is different in one important way, because he is sick, and will mostly likely never get better. This book follows his story, as he runs away from home, taking his camera, notebook, and dog, to try to get to the top of Mount Rainier. The students have been greatly enjoying the story. It is so popular it is the second reading for some!
As mentioned, our History unit is linked to our English unit. It is designed to help the students develop an understanding of the structure and history of Government in Australia. The students will examine the structure, function and services provided by Local and State Government. They will examine the voting process in Australia, and will hold a class election. The students will study Federal Parliament and research members of Parliament and their jobs. They will also study the process of passing a Bill through Federal Parliament, view Question Time, and discuss its purpose.
Like every other term, Term 2 is packed full of terrific activities to keep us busy! In particular, the Henry Lawson Festival Play Day is not far away and will be held at The Henry Lawson High School auditorium. The students have been keenly practising for this and are looking forward to their performance on the day. We are also looking forward to the Henry Lawson Festival Concert, which will be held on Friday night, and the Procession, which will be held on Saturday. In addition, keep an eye out for student art works and odes which will be on display in shop windows in the Main Street. The theme of the festival this year is ‘Ode to Winter’ which has provided ‘cool’ impetus for our work!
Students in year 5/6 were given a collection of dice to solve a variety of problems. The first was to count the total number of dots on top; it was interesting watching the counting strategies. The next problem was to find the total number of dots on the bottom without turning them over. This encouraged students to think about their knowledge of a die and that the opposite sides always add to 7.
Year 5/6 students were asked to place a variety of decimal cards onto a 0 to 1 number line. I was impressed with how students justified their choices and what strategies they used to estimate. Students were then asked to record a fraction and place on the number line. Students also contributed very well to discussions about what they knew about decimals and fractions, some very sophisticated language was shared and we found out that the line dividing the numbers in a fraction is called a ‘vinculum’.
Students in 2/3/4 are looking at time this week. We began this week by recording all we know about time, after that, students were asked to draw a clock. For homework this week, I encourage all students to practise telling the time using an analogue clock. We played clock patience using the numbers for the hour; we will add minute numbers, in 5-minute increments, next then cards with ‘past’ and ‘to’ times.
Kindergarten and year 1 students are learning about the mass of a variety of everyday objects. They are very good at ‘hefting’ and estimating how many informal units might weigh the same as an everyday item. After estimating, students use the balance scales to check their estimations. A suggested activity for home might be to talk to you child/children when and where you use scales and why we need to weight things.