Week 3, Term 2 2021
Dear Parents, Students and community members,
Greetings from Stanthorpe! There is nothing quite like a few days embracing the clean air and crisp coolness of spending time in Stanthorpe with my fellow Principals and colleagues from Toowoomba Catholic Schools Office.
Whilst the end of semester might seem to be a long way off, this term is flying past like any other busy term. We have started with a series of short weeks, then moved into events like 2022 Prep Interviews, NAPLAN, Drama Festival and Athletics Carnival preparation. These all can be a distraction to core business - academics. I encourage all families and our learners especially, to work collaboratively with our highly committed staff in preparing for the end of Semester 1 so that each and every learner is given the best opportunity to make the most of their talents. Hopefully very, very few students will be looking at their school report and thinking “If only".
A very important element in helping the learner to achieve is what we expect. Expectations exert a tremendous influence on what each learner is able to achieve. Research urges teachers and students to set their sights high – and mean it. The result will be improved student learning.
Just about every school, teacher and parent says they hold high expectations for their children. However, what is said may not be truly believed - and it is the belief that moves the learner.
Having high expectations is not all that is needed for students to succeed. Teaching and learning are very complex. But high expectations, from the adults in their lives, are the launching pad, the base from which students can aim for the stars and, using their own abilities and efforts, achieve their learning mission.
Hopefully, we will be able to emphasise to our learners the importance of having high expectations of themselves, especially in the ways in which we demonstrate our own expectations of ourselves.
As adults, whatever we want our children to be, we have to demonstrate it to them and be successful role models for them, so they can see the benefits of what it is we are leading them to be. If we abdicate leadership, we deprive our children of guidance and create opportunities for perhaps less desirable influences to enter their lives; all the more reason for us to be upfront leaders and role models.
If we are adults who lead, we can create opportunities for our learners to thrive. We should never be apologetic about demanding high standards. Our students need us to set standards and clearly define boundaries where there is freedom for them to make positive choices about their intended achievements and their social responsibilities. We assume leadership in this area, because we are more experienced, knowledgeable and wise. To be successful in this area, we need to be relaxed, warm and accepting whilst still being firm and insistent.
Recently I was speaking with a prospective family for 2022 about our Ignite Learning Project and in particular the SSPS learning dispositions. It made me want to share this article titled, “Letter to my Children” that I have used in previous schools and I have included it below, deciding its message needs no explanation. Feel free to share and engage in conversation with your child or children.
Dearest children of mine,
Here's a few things I really need you to know:
Everything in life needs to be earned. This includes respect, friendship and loyalty. You need to work hard in school and in life to receive these things.
You don't get an award for everything that you do. Putting out the garbage, cleaning your room or participating in a sport are things that you should do without expectation.
These are things that build character and will make you a decent human. If you want an award, do something amazing and mum will give you an extra big hug.
Always be kind. Kindness is contagious and feeling good comes from giving away free samples of your beautiful nature.
If kids are awful to you or your friends, be resilient and protect your heart. Just understand there's something in these kids that makes them sad enough to be mean to others. Feel sorry for them and step away.
I know you won't believe it, but one day their heart will understand the word regret.
Be brave. Get the words "I can't" out of your mind. Indeed, you might not be able to, but unless you really give it a try how will you know? You might even surprise yourself.
Dance and sing. It doesn't matter if you have no rhythm or sound like a dying cat. Have fun by yourself and when there's people watching.
Know that your mum and dad will always do the best we can for you.
You might not have the fanciest clothes, biggest house or European holidays... but know you'll be loved with two ridiculously ferocious hearts for the rest of your life.
Not a bad thought, hey?
Now, for the fifth time, go and clean your room before one of us loses it!
Mum and Dad
Thanks for reading.
Dear Parents and Carers,
In the previous newsletter, I commented on the glorious weather! While I am definitely not unhappy to see the recent rain, the mornings seem to have "overnight" become darker and quite chilly...something that I do find harder to adapt to. Winter is certainly on its way!
This Sunday is Mothers' Day! I have reminded my adult sons about this as they do seem to manage quite well, NOT keeping up with significant days/ dates/ events going on around them. I am sure I will get a phone call. You, as parents of primary school age children will most probably have a little person (or two) there with you to give you a "special hug". Enjoy!!
MOTHER'S DAY BLESSING:
Loving God, on Sunday we celebrate Mothers’ Day. We pray for our mothers and those who are like mothers to us – our grandmothers, our aunties, our sisters, our teachers and our friends.
May we always remember how intelligent, capable, responsible and hard-working they are and thank them for the love, care and protection they show for us.
O God, shower our mothers with abundant blessings.
We ask this prayer in Jesus’ name.
Mrs Murphy pictured above with some special Mother's Day gifts
SACRAMENTAL PROGRAM: This evening we gather with Fr Michael to commence the second part of the parish sacramental program, preparing for Confirmation on May 21. For any parents, not able to attend this evening, the two books will be sent home via school.
Cluster Groups recommence this Sunday at 10:15 in the Cathedral Centre.
YEAR 6 RETREAT: Yesterday I was privileged to join with the Year 6 teachers and students for a Leadership Retreat. Despite the weather, we were very excited to have been given access to the Micah Centre, across the road, which is a function room attached to TCSO and we were very well looked after.
To start the day, I shared the following Easter message from Pope Francis:
“Dear young people, we did not come into the world to vegetate … We came for another reason: to leave a mark … The times we live in do not call for young couch potatoes, but for young people with shoes, or better, boots laced”.
The discussion that followed and continued throughout the day, which also drew on the special characteristics of giraffes, was very thoughtful, positive and hopefully inspiring. Year 6 parents, you should be very proud of your Year 6 Leader.
Illuminate RE Strategy:
Thank you very much to the 33 parents who took the time to complete the questionaire at the end of last term, responding to the questions:
Q1: At SSPS, RE is part of the everyday curriculum. The RE program consists of two dimensions: a) RE lessons: teaching students religion (learning about Jesus, discussing Bible stories, other faiths, the sacraments etc b) Religious Life of the School: teaching students to be religious in a particular way ( service activities, Project Compassion projects, masses, prayer gatherings, Cornerstone Value Awards).
With regards to my child’s education, it is my opinion that-
Both (a) and (b) are important./Neither is important./Only (a) is important./Only (b) is important.
Q2: Does your child discuss RE topics or activities with you?
(Often, occasionally, rarely, never)
Q3: Do you think that discussing Bible stories at school is beneficial?
(No, yes, it depends on how it is done)
Q4: What would you suggest is your child’s favourite part of RE?
(bible stories, service activities, prayer, mass and liturgies, all of it, none of it, other)
Responses have been collated and shared with staff, along with data gathered from students and teachers. All this data, together is helping us to plan our way forward in the Illuminate Project.
Further information and updates will be shared in the coming weeks and months, but if you have any questions about the project, do not hesitate to contact me via the school office.
Enjoy the rest of the week,
Dear Parents and Carers,
SEMESTER 1 REPORTING
Semester 1 report cards will be sent out in the final week of this term and therefore I feel it timely for a reminder around the purpose of assessment and reporting.
Report cards include judgements and comments on student learning, effort and behaviour for the semester.
The final A-E mark that you see in the report card is the result of an assessment process that takes place in each classroom that is facilitated by the class teacher over the course of the semester.
The Toowoomba Catholic Schools' 'Assessment, Feedback and Reporting Framework' provides the following definition of assessment:
Assessment is the ongoing process of gathering, analysing and reflecting on evidence by teachers and students in order to make informed judgements about what students know, understand and can do.
The same framework also provides a purpose for assessment.
The fundamental purpose of assessment in education is to establish and understand where learners are in an aspect of their learning at the time of the assessment and to map student progress over time. It involves teachers making ongoing judgments about student progress which are then used to design and deliver effective feedback.
One key principle in both of those definitions is that assessment is ongoing. No longer does a student's final result rely on a test at the end of the unit or term. Students are now frequently assessed within lessons to help teachers understand where students are at in their learning and to inform what teaching they need moving forward. All of this assessment and observations then contribute to the final mark that you see on the report card.
At St Saviour's Primary we want our learners to STRIVE at LEARNING and at LIFE and they can do that through the following learning dispositions:
CURIOUS Learners have lots of questions to ask. They like finding things out and are ready to be enthused and intrigued by new mysteries and challenges. To help encourage curiosity several teachers have implemented a Wonder Wall in their classroom. This is something that can also fit at home.
A Wonder Wall is a display/whiteboard/board where learners can add questions they are genuiniely interested in. They can use sticky notes or write them up. As a reward or a family activity one of the questions can be selected and investigated.The idea is to value the questions and encourage learners to keep asking questions.
If you would like to provide any feedback, please feel free to email me. email@example.com
NAPLAN ONLINE 2021
Students at St Saviour’s Primary in Years 3 and 5 will be completing NAPLAN Online in 2021.
Preparation for the NAPLAN tests:
- There has been an online practice test for Year 3 and 5 students last week.
- At St Saviour’s Primary, we are fortunate that our students are currently using devices to assist with their learning. Teachers are currently asking students to write and read stories on their device, use an online calculator and drawing instruments in maths and teaching ICT skills such as drag and drop, copy and paste and understanding drop down menus. All of these skills will help them to complete the tests to the best of their ability.
For more information around NAPLAN please click on the below link for an online parent information brochure: https://nap.edu.au/docs/default-source/resources/naplan-online-information-brochure-for-parents-and-carers.pdf
The timetable for the tests is below:
9am 11 May – Writing (Paper Test)
9am 12 May – Reading (Online)
11.30am 12 May – Conventions of Language (Online)
9am 17 May – Numeracy (Online)
9am 11 May – Writing (Online)
9am 13 May – Reading (Online)
11.30am 13 May – Conventions of Language (Online)
11.30am 17 May – Numeracy (Online)
RACE DAY 2021
SAVE THE DATE - Saturday October 30
St Saviour's Primary and St Patrick's Cathedral will again be holding a Race Day on Saturday October 30 in the Marquee at Clifford Park Turf Club. This is also Victorian Derby Day and we will stick with the 'Black & White' theme for the day.
Please stay tuned for ticket sales and sponsorship opportunities in the next newsletter.
Dear Parents and Guardians,
Happy Week 3!
Checking in with Students about Their Learning
Knowing learners and how they learn often involves asking powerful questions and seeing the classroom through the child's eyes. One way we do this at SSPS is through 'Learning Walks'. On these walks, we get a snapshot of what is happening in the classroom and then ask random children 5 questions.
1. What are you learning? Why?
2. How are you doing?
3. How do you know?
4. How can you improve?
5. Where do you go for help?
There is also a list of questions that parents can ask their children about learning:
1. What did you learn today?
2. How did you do?
3. What did you do if you didn't understand?
4. How can you improve on your learning?
5. What are you most proud of?
I'd encourage you to have a go at asking these questions with your child/ren - their responses may suprise you!
Have a wonderful day
Daisy and Tom reading together
Zone and Darling Downs Trials
All information about Zone and Darling Downs trials will be placed on SchoolZine. Please check SchoolZine regularly or set up notifications on your phone if you wish for your child to be eligible to trial for Zone and Darling Downs sporting teams as you will be required to obtain paperwork from me. Any questions, please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
I am very excited to announce that Ariana Jeffrey made the Darling Downs Netball Team, Evie Phillips made the Darling Downs Hockey Team, Hunter Tate-Roche made the Darling Downs NRL Team and Taylor Wann made the Toowoomba NRL Team. What a fantastic achievement and we look forward to hearing all about it.
ZONE Cross Country
On Friday the 30th of April James Currie, Gue Gue, Kye McHugh, Maya Smith, Lydia Dull, Molly Standing, Joe Phillips, Sean Darvall, Erin Ward, Maddy Kratzke, Emma Barram, Taylor Wann, Casey Weeden, Thomas Prust, Lucy Hardy, Ayen Gakeer and Sophia Hooper competed at the ZONE Cross Country. All students did a fantastic job on the day with Taylor Wann, Erin Ward and Maya Smith qualifying for the ZONE team and will now be competing at the Darling Downs Cross Country (Pictures below)
During term two and three I will be conducting Discus training in the lead up to St Saviour's Primary Athletics Carnival. As Discus is considered a HIGH risk activity, parent permission is needed for your child/ren to participate in training and the event at the School Athletics Carnival (if applicable). All training will be conducted by Mr Luck who is a qualified HPE teacher and an accredited athletics coach. Please fill out the attached permission form by clicking the link below for your child to be able to receive training at school and compete in Discus at the St Saviour's Athletic Carnival. Please note that if no permission is received, then your child will not be able to participate.
Upcoming Events (Term Two)
- SSPS Athletics Carnival – 17th June 2021 (9am – 12pm) and 18th June 2021 (8:30pm – 3pm)
Congratulations to Erin Ward who competed at a gymnastics competition in Warwick over the long weekend. Erin put in a mammoth effort achieving three 2nd places and one third in her events coming second overall. This is a very well deserved achievement as Erin trains for gymnastics 15 hours a week before and after school.
- We are preparing to participate in National Simultaneous Story-time (NSST), an Australian wide event, on Wednesday 19th May by listening to the book ”Give Me Some Space.” We are also locating some amazing facts about life in space using resources found in links from our library database, AccessIT and Encyclopaedia Britannica.
- Check out the links to amazing space facts and videos on our AccessIT homepage.
- A great big thank you to Mrs Powers for creating the great display we are enjoying in our library space.
Remember to enter the colouring competition available here NSS2021 - Learn From Play or collect a copy from the library and return it to Mrs Anderson for submission. Please add a title and your name on the back of your finished work.
Thank you for overseeing the weekly return of library books, we have had a good return rate for the start of the term.
STORY BOX LIBRARY ENCYCLOPAEDIA BRITANNICA WHEELERS E-PLATFORM
Log into these great resources, via the ONLINE RESOURCES dashboard in AccessIT and have some fun listening to stories, finding books to borrow and reading about the world and our universe.
Our Year 3 classes visited Pioneer Village last Friday. Below are some recounts from our Year 3 children about their excurison to Pioneer Village. Thank you to all the parents and grandparents who also came and helped out on the day.
Mrs Harkins - Year 3 teacher
Term 2 School Fees:
Term 2 School Fees will be emailed out early next week. Please ensure you keep an eye out for this statement in your inbox. Term 1 school fees should now be finalised. For those families who are direct debiting, your schoool fees will continue to come out as per your payment schedule. Just a reminder school fees can be paid directly into our school bank account (details below) or paid directly at the office via eftpos or cash.
- Account Name: St Saviour’s Primary Account
- BSB: 064-786
- Account Number: 100025243
- Bank: Commonwealth Bank of Australia
- Branch: ADF
The changeover to Winter Uniform will officially begin on Monday 17th May. Please ensure you have the necessary winter uniform items to commence changeover.
Skooldayz Uniform Shop:
The Uniform Shop will be open on Monday and Friday of Term 2 from 2.30 pm - 4.00 pm. Please contact Dan Eagleson on 0481 318 398 for all your uniform supplies. Just a reminder that winter uniform requirements will need to be worn from the 17th May in Term 2. Please ensure your child has the necessary uniform requirements for the upcoming colder months.
Outside School Care:
Reminder for families wanting to enrol their children are invited visit our website www.tckc.qld.edu.au, click on OUTSIDE SCHOOL HOURS CARE tab and complete an enrolment form relevant to St Saviours. Our website also provides you with operating hours, fee schedules and other relevant information. The services offer flexible arrangements to suit the needs of your family and provides the opportunity for children to grow and develop their social skills in a leisure based environment nurtured by our Catholic ethos.
We can be contacted on 0429 381 561 between 6:30-8:30 and 1:00- 6:00 each day or at SSPcare@tckc.qld.edu.au to help you with any bookings or enquires.
Mother's Day Raffle:
Thank you to everyone who supported the Mother's Day Raffle run by the P&F. Special thanks to Katie Boydpratt for all her hard work behind the scenes in organising donations of prizes and for selling tickets before and after school this past week. Thank you also to the Year 6 children who also gave up their lunch time to sell tickets. The winners of the raffle prizes will be drawn tomorrow. We would like to acknowledge the following businesses who kindly donated prizes to the Mother's Day Raffle.
St Joseph's College OPEN DAY
St Joseph's College is very excited to be hosting their Open Day on Wednesday, 19th May. Further information is available via the following links Try Booking and Facebook pages. Please do not hesitate to contact St Joseph's College for further information.