- Messages from the Principal
- Messages from the Assistant Principal
- Aboriginal Education News
- Library News
- Religious Education News
- A letter from Bishop Bill
- Parish Bulletin
- From the Office of Safeguarding - Child Protection Week
- Aspire 2022 Auditions closing 17/9/2021
- You're Kidding Me Workshops for families
- Saver Plus
- Free family fun with the Parliament of NSW
- Choosing Healthy Snacks
- Nature at home activites
- School Holiday Ideas
Dear Parent and Friends of St Kevin’s,
Well, we come to the end of a very unusual term. I would like to say a huge thank you to everyone who in any way, helped our students through this tricky time of learning from home. To the amazing teachers who have ZOOMED or been on TEAMS at least TWICE a DAY, met with groups of students to meet their individual needs, differentiated the tasks and provided feedback on submitted tasks to provide opportunities for their students to grow and improve in their learning.
To our awesome parents who have juggled working from home and supervising, connecting computers, opening ZOOM invites, ensuring their children are completing set tasks and submitting them, and above all providing support for the times when tears may appear and frustration at not being with their friends comes to the surface. Parenting is the hardest but most rewarding job any of us will ever do.
To the students themselves – for displaying tenacity and resilience when the going got tough. For becoming independent and self-motivated learners. I know you are missing your friends and playing games together, but you are going great guns in continuing your learning from home.
So now comes time for a 2-week rest from home learning. Take the time to re-charge and relax. We will unfortunately return to home learning for the first 5 weeks of Term 4 as per NSW Government guidelines.
Stay safe and relax during the holidays.
COVID Update and TERM 4
Our Director Mr Gerard Mowbray has advised us that schools in the Newcastle and Lake Macquarie regions will continue to be in lockdown and follow NSW Government and Health orders as explained by the NSW Premier in her roadmap for a return to school last month.
These orders are not flexible or to be changed unless our region comes out of lockdown. So, it will be a difficult time for some parents as they juggle work and the varied return to school dates for their children.
So, what does this look like for St Kevin’s?
Will home learning continue in Term 4?
YES. Home Learning to continue till at least October 25 depending on which class your child is in. All teachers will continue to be working from home, and there will be only minimal supervision for children of essential workers completing a set roster.
Home Learning Packs for Years K-6 will again be available for pick-up on Friday October 1 from 9am -2pm. They can be collected from outside the school gate weather permitting, or if raining from under the Church awning.
When do classes resume for my child?
October 25 –Kinder and Year 1 students ONLY return to school.
November 1 –Year 2 and Year 6 students return to school.
November 8 – Year 3, 4 and 5 students return to school.
Until nominated return to school dates arrive, classes will continue online learning from home.
If you are an essential worker and your child needs to be at school whilst you are at work, then minimal supervision will be provided for them until their nominated return to school date.
Kinder Transition 2022
We are again in a holding pattern awaiting to see what restrictions will be lifted once our students are back on site. Transition will again look different, but we will be in touch early Term 4 as soon as we know what we can and cannot do here at school. Check out our Facebook K2U page for regular updates.
With 81% of the NSW adult population first dose vaccinated, we are in the home stretch. Certainly, one of the key things missing in our lives at the moment is COMMUNITY. I very definitely miss our lovely, little St Kevin’s community quite acutely. I miss the day-to-day interactions with the children, not only those in my own class but also the children in the wider school community. These interactions are so important to building trust and rapport with the students. In our 2.0 version of lockdown, or Lockdown 2021, we have learnt and changed the way we have approached Home Learning. Yesterday, in our Teams’ Staff Meeting we discussed how vital our parents have been in supporting us in delivering Home Learning. Thank you!
Whilst we appreciated the need to keep the children connected in 2020, this time around we have learnt the importance of trying to maintain that connection and utilise collaborative learning techniques, in so far as we are able to, as we would normally do in our classrooms. Our BYOD program has certainly made this so much easier for Years 4 – 6. All classes, through Zoom or Teams, are getting students to engage with each other in their learning journey daily. I was lucky enough to sit on Kinder Reading Zooms over the last couple of days and hear our wonderful Kindergarten children reading. They were reading and celebrating their successes together. Woohoo!
Mrs Larke has been busy keeping our community connected through the management of our Facebook page. Thanks to everyone for sharing, this is so important.
The Guess the Lollies in the Jar competition closed yesterday. This was an attempt to bring a little fun and to stay connected. We had 269 entries. Believe it or not, our very first entry ended up being the winner – with just the first clue. No one guessed the correct answer, but Caine Platt managed to come within one – 265 lollies! There were actually 266. Thanks to everyone for participating. I am scratching my head to work out what to do for next Term. If anyone has an inspired idea please let me know… but sorry there will be no free trips to Disneyland ( the budget just doesn’t stretch that far).
Caine receiving the news that he was the winner (via Teams from Mrs Jennings)
I look forward to being back face to face, with restrictions (unfortunately). Best wishes on a safe and happy holiday… with no home learning!
Once again our school is leading the way in promoting knowledge, understanding and awareness of First Nations people and the importance of recognising and acknowledging Country.
In the September edition of Aurora, our school captains Emme and Cristiano featured in an article about Australia Post encouraging people to acknowledge the Traditional Custodians of the land their postal item is being delivered on.
This is part of a campaign by Gomeroi woman, Rachael McPhail, supported by Australia Post, to celebrate our First Nations people. Ms McPhail told ABC Radio, "For every town, for every place in this country, we have an original name, and it's important to use them as a celebration and to recognise the history and the connection of First People to Country."
With this in mind, I encourage everyone to include Traditional Place names in the address field when sending letters and parcels.
To find Traditional Place names, check the AIATSIS website https://aiatsis.gov.au/explore/map-indigenous-australia , Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Land Councils, or Cultural Centres in your local area.
When sending items you can include a Traditional Place name in either the address you’re sending from, or in the recipient’s address. To ensure that the item will be delivered correctly Australia Post recommends that the Traditional Place name is included below your name or company name, but above the street address.
So, a letter to me at St Kevin’s Primary School would be addressed like this:
St Kevin’s Primary School
228 Main Rd
CARDIFF NSW 2285
Our thanks to Emme and Cristiano for supporting this important initiative, and helping to generate wider community awareness and acknowledgement of our First Nations people.
Wishing everyone an enjoyable school holiday break during these challenging times. Stay safe.
Nginowa….See you later (Awabakal)
Aboriginal Education Teacher
Premier’s Reading Challenge has closed
Congratulations to all the children who completed PRC at home and entered books independently. We are very proud of all the children who added books during Home Learning so they completed the 2021 PRC challenge.
Congratulations to the following students for completing PRC at home recently.
Year 1 – Landon
Year 5 - Braethan
Good news, all children from St Kevin’s will receive a certificate for completing PRC as their teachers have read books to them and this year I was able to add these books to their PRC Student Reading Log.
All children will receive their certificate when we return to school.
Holiday time - You might like to watch some Author interviews in the holidays and read some of their books.
Australian Reading Hour
Australia reads aims to get people reading more books, more often.
It was lovely to hear which books the children read for Reading Hour. Below are some suggestions of books you may like to read during the holidays.
Jordy – Australia's Greatest Disasters by John Miller ( Borrow on Sora App )
Teddy – Harry Potter
Elliana – Pawn Of Prophecy
Belinda- Amelia Jane by Enid Blyton
Rylan – Dogman
Blake – Minecraft
Lucas – BFG by Roald Dahl
Arabella – Zoe's Rescue Zoo
Jaycee – Mingaloo
Harper – Shoe's for Grandpa
If you didn’t get a chance to read this week, please try and do some reading in the holidays.
A great PowerPoint to look at with your children during the holidays.
Some tips for parents, a very informative website.
Please let me know if I can help in anyway. Happy holidays!
Whist contemplating this week's newsletter item, I became very aware of my family surrounding me in various states of learning and working at home. My husband, working away on emails beside me, one child on a zoom lesson, one completing a fitness challenge set by his PASS teacher, two working together (loudly!) on the creation of a Goldberg machine and another child cooking and taking photos (creatively avoiding the mess he’d created!) to send to his Food Tech teacher. Gosh, what a change learning has undergone in recent weeks! Despite the chaos surrounding me, I can’t help feel completely blessed for this bonus time together. Normally my family is split between home and 5 different schools, but here we are, all together, thriving and learning so many things beyond the walls of the classroom. As a little disagreement ensued over the Goldburg Machine, I found myself reminding my children to keep filling each other's buckets in the way they speak and interact. This prompted me to think that, as we head into school holidays after a long and tiring term, it’s probably a pertinent time to remind all our children to continue being Bucket Fillers.
‘Bucket filling’ is a term we use at school daily, particularly in the youngest grades. We teach the children that everyone is born with an invisible bucket. We remind the children to use kind words, gentle hands, praise and love to continually fill one another's buckets. Over the school holidays, if you find your children dipping from your bucket or one another's buckets (using mean words, fighting, disobeying), you may like to remind them that God wants them to be a bucket filler every day. It is a wonderfully simple way to explain kindness to children and it’s not such a bad way for adults to think either! If your children need a little reminder about being a bucket filler, you can find the latest Bucket Filler book, God’s Plan for Your Happiness here read by the author, Carol McCloud.
The pandemic is an important time to remember that we too need to be Bucket Fillers each day in our interactions with our family and people in our community despite our stresses, exhaustion and frayed nerves. Whilst there are many things we cannot do at the moment, we are unlimited in our ability to spread kindness in our world. I shared the prayer below with our staff members recently, I hope it speaks to your heart as it did mine. These school holidays, may each of us in the St. Kevin’s community shine God’s love through our eyes, our actions and our words to all those we meet despite the masks still covering our smiles.
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. This week we hear from…
In Religion, Year 4 have been learning about Justice, and what it means to serve others. Year 4 had to research modern figures who demonstrate service to others and their communities.
May God’s Spirit be with you all these holidays. May you have a restful break from home learning and lots of quality family time.
Mrs Jasmina Boudan
Religious Education Coordinator
Please find a letter attached from Bishop Bill. The community of St Kevin's will keep him in our thoughts and prayers.
Remember the Wild has compiled some of their favourite activities to help stay connected to each other and the nature around us. Find nature livestreams, fun activities, podcasts, and citizen science activities at rememberthewild.org.au, or follow them on Facebook.
You can also watch their special five-part documentary series, Eucalypt. The Eucalypt series explores these trees’ evolution and ecology, their intimate connection with Indigenous Australians, their role in art and craftsmanship, and their future in a changing world.