- Messages from the Principal
- School Rules
- Kids Matter
- COVID Update
- School Uniform
- Sports Carnival
- Enrolments for 2022
- Messages from the Assistant Principal
- Aboriginal Education News
- RE News
- Library News
- Parish Bulletin
- P & F AGM Reminder
- Canteen News
- P & F News
- Choose a SunSmart Hat
- Food Safe Lunch Box
- Good For Kids - Screen Time
- Saver Plus
Dear Parents and Friends of St Kevin’s,
Week 6 Term 1 … this year is certainly speeding along.
Now is the time that we are well and truly into our routine of learning and working hard. This year our school goals are around the subject of mathematics. Mathematics is part of our everyday life and it is paramount that we assist our students to be numerate. Numeracy is fundamental to a student’s ability to learn at school and to engage productively in society.
Here at school that looks like ensuring our students not only have skills and knowledge in areas of counting and recognising numbers and their place value e.g 101 v 1001, additional and subtraction facts to 20, times tables, units of measurement, time, fractions and decimals to name but a few, but how to apply this basic knowledge to solve problems that they encompass daily. Problem solving is about being able to analyse, research, be creative, communicate, decision making and team building. It is not enough to just know basic arithmetic facts and figures, but we must know how and why we use this knowledge to ensure successful lifelong learning.
So, when you ask your children what they learnt at school today, focus on mathematical conversations. Chat about real world maths and link to what they are learning in school. Some examples could be:
- In Kinder and Year 1 recognising numbers to 100 – look at speed signs on the roads and discuss.
- Year 2 and 3 show them your shopping docket but remove the total and ask them to estimate the cost and then add up the amount spent – just don’t choose a weekly shop as it might be a wee bit too long!
- Years 4-6 start looking at where we use fractions and decimals and measurement in our everyday lives – recipes, visits to Bunnings, discuss what 25%, 50% off sale means, markings on the sporting fields, home budgeting, car racing.
Have a great week of mathematical discussions.
- Be safe
- Be Respectful
- Be a Learner
We only have these 3 rules so that when children make a mistake they can be directed back to these simple rules and we can discuss how they did not follow them. Children …and us adults…will always make mistakes, and that is how we learn. So here at school if there is a disagreement between students, a name calling, a lack of focus in the classroom, we can go to these rules and explain and discuss how to best follow them. Primary school children do not intentionally decide to be unsafe, disrespectful or a non-learner, but sometimes in the heat of the moment they will get angry and physical, mean and nasty, or appear to switch off and disengage. As the adults in their lives we are there to guide them back to the right path and assist them so that in the future they make more good choices.
At the front of our school is a sign that says we are a “Kids Matter School”. That organisation has now been re-named and redesigned and is called “Be You” – we have not yet changed our signage. However, the philosophy is very similar – it’s all about supporting the well being and mental health of our students. Our students can come to school each and every day with an invisible backpack on, and in this backpack can be things like:
- Being worried about a parent who is very sick
- Being hungry because there was nothing to eat at home this morning
- Being worried because they heard their parents fighting
- Being worried because they know their parents are out of work
- Being worried about a sibling
- Being worried because they forgot it’s sports day and they wore the wrong uniform
- Being worried because they forgot their library book or home reader
This invisible backpack can result in negative behaviour at school and students breaking school rules or being labelled “naughty” by their peers. We as the adults in our children’s lives have to ensure that we are aware of these invisible backpacks and listen to our children and support them when something goes wrong. We have to remember that as children dealing with these invisible backpacks this is hard work and they need support, not judgement or being unjustly labelled “naughty”. St Kevin’s is a beautiful supporting community where these invisible backpacks are lightened by the friendships and support from everyone …students, teachers and parents, and together we will continue to ensure that all our children grow and learn in a safe and respectful community.
- Parents and visitors are still not permitted on site
- External providers for NDIS visits are permitted
- External providers for curriculum delivery are permitted
- No sharing of food such as birthday cakes
- Canteen can re-open – modified menu – VOLUNTEERS NEEDED PLEASE – COVID guidelines to be followed
- Sport will continue with Regional and Diocesan pathways now open
- Parents cannot attend sports carnivals
- No musical at St Kevin’s in 2021
- Year 5/6 camp going ahead
- Excursions for other classes being planned – no parents able to attend
- School athletics carnival for Years 2- 6 ONLY in 2021 (March 12) – no parents able to attend or volunteer
There is an outbreak of “Not following the Uniform” virus!!! This includes wearing nail polish, wrong coloured hair bows and sports shoes and too much jewellery. Please wear only navy hair bows, white joggers on a Friday and remove nail polish and restrict jewellery to a watch, a bangle and one pair of ear rings.
Unfortunately due to COVID restrictions only Years 2-6 will be attending our school Athletics Carnival. This is due to not being able to access parent volunteers to assist with time-keeping, marshalling and running of games. Kinder and Year 1 will have their own Athletics Carnival games and races here at school under the supervision of their class teachers.
Covid restrictions do not permit us to have parents, grandparents assisting or attending as spectators at school carnivals.
It is important to create a growth mindset for our children. Research tells us that there is great power in our words and at times we unintentionally reinforce negative thinking. For example, when our child is struggling with a concept, skill or process we might try to boost them up by saying to them not to worry. We tell them that they can’t be good at everything or tell them that they are good at something else. We do this in a bid to refocus them and to switch them from negative thinking. Are we doing this too frequently? Are we unintentionally developing fixed mindsets? Letting them believe (unintentionally) I am not good at this and cannot be good at this??
Considerable research, particularly out of Stanford University led by Carol Dweck, values the importance of creating in our children a growth mindset so that we can unlock their potential. I hark back to my last newsletter item.
“There is a huge elephant standing in most math classrooms, it is the idea that only some students can do well in math. Students believe it, parents believe and teachers believe it. The myth that math is a gift that some students have and some do not, is one of the most damaging ideas that pervades education in the US and that stands in the way of students’ math achievement. “ Jo Boaler (Stanford University)
Do you think that boys are better at maths than girls? Do you think maths is a natural ability? Brain science research has revealed 5 key principles:
- All students can achieve at higher levels
- Students’ Ideas about their Ability Determine their Learning Pathways and Math Achievement
- Mistakes and Struggle are Extremely Important for Learning
- Mathematics should be Dissociated from Speed
- Teachers Messages are Hugely Powerful
Our goal at St Kevin’s is to promote in our children a growth mindset rather than a fixed mindset. We want ALL children to realise that they can all achieve at higher levels, they just need to be open to this idea and recognise that we are all lifelong learners. At times learning is not easy. We do have to struggle and it is okay to make mistakes. If we never make mistakes we are not learning anything new or challenging. It is in making mistakes that we know that we are learning something new and we might need to struggle for a little while to get there but if we persist, seek assistance and try new strategies we can get there.
I found this video on brain neuroplasticity interesting and easy to understand. I hope it makes sense to you as well.
Let the struggle be energising this week!
We have some important dates coming up, beginning with Harmony Week.
Harmony Week (15-21 March)
Harmony Week is a time to celebrate Australian multiculturalism and the successful integration of migrants into our community. Australia is one of the most successful multicultural countries in the world and we should celebrate this and work to maintain it.
The message of Harmony Week is ‘everyone belongs’. It is about inclusiveness, respect and belonging for all Australians, regardless of cultural or linguistic background, united by a set of core Australian values.
We will advise you of our planned activities next week.
Did you know?
- Nearly half (49 per cent) of Australians were born overseas or have at least one parent who was.
- We identify with over 300 ancestries.
- Since 1945, more than 7.5 million people have migrated to Australia.
- 85 per cent of Australians agree multiculturalism has been good for Australia.
- Apart from English, the most common languages spoken in Australia are Mandarin, Arabic, Cantonese, Vietnamese, Italian, Greek, Tagalog/Filipino, Hindi, Spanish and Punjabi.
- More than 70 Indigenous languages are spoken in Australia.
These facts are taken from ABS 2016 Census Data.
- National Sorry Day 26 May
- National Reconciliation Week 27 May – 3 June
- NAIDOC Week 4-11 July
We will provide more information about these events and how we will celebrate them as the year progresses.
In the meantime, in the lead up to Harmony Week you may wish to talk with your children about their ancestry and the family stories and anecdotes which they can relate to. This helps with their feeling of belonging and connection to family.
Yaluu ngali ngamilay (We will see each other again)
Aboriginal Education Teacher
Mini Vinnies News
We are very excited to announce the launch of Mini Vinnies for 2021! Students from years 2-6 came together for our first meeting last week to discuss their ideas for raising money to help those less fortunate. We focussed on the launch of our first social justice initiative for the year, Project Compassion. Our Mini Vinnies have been reminding and encouraging everyone to drop some coins into the Project Compassion boxes in classrooms. Every little bit makes a big difference! Project Compassion is a yearly fundraiser bringing awareness to situations of poverty in our world and how we can help through Caritas Australia. The enthusiasm of the children was infectious and we are looking forward to making their great ideas come to life throughout the year.
What are we learning in Religion?
Each newsletter, we will showcase a class and give you a little insight as to what they are learning about during Religion lessons. We will kick it off with…
We have begun learning all about Lent and Easter. We know that Lent begins on Ash Wednesday and lasts for 40 days. We also know that the colour purple is used on our prayer table and in the church during Lent. Lent is a special time for making ourselves better people and for helping others. We are helping others by putting some money into the Project Compassion box in our classroom. We are making ourselves better by making the choice to ‘Be More’. Please click the video link below to see our artworks and hear how we are each going to Be More this Lent.
Written by Year 1
May God’s Spirit be with you all each day,
Mrs Jasmina Boudan
Religious Education Coordinator
Premier’s Reading Challenge - PRC
All classes received their passwords for PRC this week. Unfortunately, the PRC website has had problems with the uploading of new students therefore Kinders and any new students to St. Kevin’s will receive their passwords as soon as the upload problem is resolved.
Please remind your child to read PRC books and visit the Student Site.
The children have been excited to borrow books using SORA. Please encourage your child to explore this app. There are some terrific eBooks and Audio books.
To use Sora at home you need to be signed into mnconnect.cloud. If you have more then one child you will need to log off and sign the next child in to mnconnect to borrow a book.
Below are instructions as St Kevin’s isn’t listed, our school is ACEN.
Please email me if you need any help.
The Primary classes have received log in details for typing.com
It is very important that children do some typing practise at home.
I am very impressed with the creativity in Lego Club. The boys worked on their creations over the last 2 weeks. Well done Jordy and Caine.
St. Kevin’s P&F AGM - Reminder
All are welcome at the 2021 Annual General Meeting for St Kevin's P&F.
Be part of a great team of parents, carers and teachers and become an active member!
The AGM great chance to meet other parents and will include updates from different committee members and election of 2021 Executive team. Nomination for any of the executive roles (President, Vice President, Secretary and Treasurer) are open to parents/carers of current students.
Executive roles are limited at 3 consecutive years and our current Treasurer Brendan Albury will reach this milestone at the end of the year.
For a smooth transition we are especially keen to get any interest for this role or in a support role as ‘Assistant Treasurer’ with a view to transition into the Treasurer role later in the year/2022. Brendan has done an excellent job maintaining the P&F financials and keeping everything ticking, with his support in the transition you’ll be set up for success!
Please come along, meet other parents/carers, have your say and be part this great P&F!
When: 17th March 2021 @ 6:30pm
Where: School Library
Drinks and nibbles will also be provided
If you have a flair for fundraising, creative ideas for events or just want to be a part of a great team that does amazing things at St Kevin's Primary school, come to our first fundraising meeting for the year on Saturday 6th March at 2.30 pm at the Cardiff RSL. It is a meet and greet chat where we discuss ideas and set our fundraising calendar for the year. We love new faces to attend with new ideas and energy. Come along and be a fundraising star!