Saturday, 19 May 2018

Week Four

How blessed have we been to have this truly beautiful weather!  I hope you have all been able to get out and about and enjoy the sunshine while it lasts.  Being a farmer's daughter I am very mindful of the need for rain however I will be soaking up every available ray of sunshine in the meantime.


A note went home on Friday about the Australian Early Development Census.  I will be completing this census on Wednesday and Thursday this week.  Mrs Sorgiovanni will be teaching whilst I do this. The census does not involve the children directly and the information put into the census comes directly from our school records.  If you would prefer for your child's information to be excluded from the census then please contact Fran Marrell in the office on Monday morning in order to opt out. 

Reading Books

 A small group of children who are displaying readiness will receive home readers this week.  The books will be placed into their reading folders and swapped twice a week. Please take very good care of the readers and make sure they are placed back into your child's bag (in the folder) each day.
Please remember it is not a competition to see who has readers and who doesn't. Each child develops readiness at their own pace.  In recognising this we acknowledge the importance of differentiated learning and developmentally appropriate practice.  If a child is pushed into home reading too soon it can actually do more damage than good.  In saying this if your child receives a home reader but is not cooperative or keen to read at home please let us know ASAP.
All children should be on readers by the end of term three. If your child is not showing readiness, rest assured, we will contact you to discuss the matter well before then.

Living Things.

 In science this term we are looking at living things.  Beginning with an in depth look at plants.
Fynn brought in some Algae for us observe and it starting to grow!  Ben and his pop sprouted some bean seeds and they have been very interesting to observe.
Last week in science we dissected some fruit and found the seeds. We bound seeds in a pear, an apple, a lemon, an orange and a mandarin.   We have looked at other ways that plants grow and have set up some carrot tops and a celery base to see if they will grow.
If you happen upon any interesting plant growth feel free to bring them in.  We will be looking at mushrooms and fungi however we are very mindful of the fact that there are many poisonous varieties of fungus in our environment.


Thank you for sending in photos of your homes.  The children will be looking at these this week and discussing what their homes are made out of and with assistance writing a description of their house.

Rugby Tops and Water Bottles. 

Please don't forget to pack your child's rugby top.  Although the sun s shining it gets a bit chilly in the shade when we are eating our morning tea and lunch.  All rugby tops should be clearly labelled with your child's name.  Please do a double check each day to make sure that your child is wearing their own rugby top ... and not their classmates!
Even though the days are cooling down we still remind the children to drink water regularly.  They can use the water bubbler if need be but it is preferable that every child has their water bottle every day.

Have a lovely week.

See you tomorrow,

Julie Birch

Sunday, 13 May 2018

Week 3.

We hope our mums had a wonderful Mother's Day and that you enjoyed the very special potted succulents that your children made for you. It has been delightful to watch the children prepare this gift.  They have taken such care and pride in their work.  You are lucky mums! 
The succulents the children have planted are cuttings and will take a little time to form a root system so try not to move them too much.  They have been planted in a succulent potting mix and do not require too much water.  In fact the succulents will rot if they are kept too wet.  1/2 a cup of water each week should be more than enough. 

Casuals for Catholics this Friday- Every year Bishop Holohan asks schools in the Bunbury Diocese to hold a ‘Casuals for Catholic Care Day’ for a gold coin donation (larger donations can be made in the front office). This will take place this Friday, May 18th, and students are encouraged to wear free dress for a donation. Please put your gold coin in the container on the Parent Information table on Friday.

Photograph of  your home.
Thank you to the parents who have already emailed a copy of a photograph of your family home. If you have not yet done this then please do so by Wednesday this week. The photo needs to be of the street view of your home.  This will be used as part of your child's HASS programme.  

A huge thank you to the mums who have put their names on the roster for PMP on Thursday afternoons.  It is such a great programme for the children and we really want to make it happen.  The children loved it on Thursday and were excited that their mums were there too.  
We can have more than three from PPB each week as PPL are battling to fill their roster so if you would like to join in on Thursday afternoons let me know. 

Have a lovely week,

Julie and Gemma 

Monday, 7 May 2018

Sharing Roster and more

Even Weeks  2,4,6,8
Odd Weeks   1,3,5,7,9
Oscar A
Oscar B

My apologies for not getting the new sharing roster out earlier!  If your child was rostered on today or is due for sharing tomorrow and you are not ready... they can share on Wednesday!
I will send a hard copy home tomorrow.
Weeks 1 and 2 have been free choice news.  Weeks 3 onwards will have set topics.

A HUGE thank you to the parents who have volunteered to help with the PMP programme with Miss Holt on Thursday afternoons.  We really appreciate your time.
Unfortunately Miss Holt will not be able to work next Thursday so it would be appreciated if those parents who have rostered themselves on for week 3 could move down the list a little further.

On Friday your child will be bringing home their very special Mother's Day present.  They will need some assistance in carrying it so... please come to the door to pick up your child on Friday.

With the change of weather please make sure that you pack your child's rugby jumper every day.  It can get quite cold outside when we eat our morning tea and lunch.
All rugby jumpers must be clearly labelled with your child's name.

In our HASS studies this term we will be looking at where we live.  Beginning with our home. 
It would be appreciated if all parents could send in a photograph of the street view of their home.  That is the front of their home. The children will use this in week 4 for an activity. 
Please email this to

Thanks as always for your continued support!

Julie and Gemma.

Tuesday, 1 May 2018

Term Two - Here we go.....

Welcome back to Term 2!!!
It was wonderful to see all children really happy to be back at school. Everyone just cruised in as if they'd never left. It sounds like everyone had a great holiday - and it has been great to see parents and their children working together in the mornings to illustrate and write about special holiday events. 


The Pre primaries will be focusing on biological science this term and may be involved in handling soil, plants and animals. Could each student please bring in a pair of gardening gloves that will be kept at school. This will enable their learning to be more 'hands on' and safe.
Fynn has started the conversation by bringing in a nice jar or Algae today.  How interesting! 
We are going to find a microscope and try and look at it up close. 
If your child makes a discovery and shows an interest in something from the world of nature then please let us know and bring in anything they want to share... as long as it is non toxic and doesn't smell as bad as our resident deceased mouse.  

Reading Folders

As the students show readiness they will begin to bring home a book as a 'home reader'. In order to keep the books in excellent condition each student will need a 'reading folder'.  An example folder is on display in the classroom as you walk in. Folders can be purchased at local news-agencies.  Reading folders must be waterproof and a sensible size. A note about home reading and how to do it will accompany the first readers. 

Parent Helpers
Next week we will be starting out Perceptual Motor Program (PMP) on Thursday afternoons with Ms Holt. PMP is a program which aims to develop a child's perceptions and understandings of him/her self and his/her world through movement/motor activities.  PMP provides multi sensory experiences which give the child a wide range of experiences in seeing, hearing, touching, processing the information, making perceptual judgements and reacting. It is sequentially structured so that the child gains progressively higher order skills.
We rely on parent/grandparent/aunty/uncle help in order for this program to run effectively. As the classes are mixed together for this activity we will need 3 parent helpers from each class. Could you please add your name to a slot on your classroom parent roster if you are able to help. This session will run from 1.30-3pm on Thursday afternoons. We will still need a parent helper in the mornings as well.

Gathering Time Writing
We will begin 'writing' during gathering time each morning. Each student has been allocated 2 days a week to do their writing. During this time please assist your child to draw a picture and then 'write' about their picture. Work together to identify sounds in the words they want to write. Talk about aspects of writing such as full stops and capital letters. Be positive and praise them for their efforts. Please scribe under what they have written. The timetable for gathering time writing is pinned to our parent information board outside our classroom.

Literacy focus
This term we have begun looking at small words using the concept of 'Onset and Rime'. Similar to teaching beginning readers about rhyme, teaching children about onset and rime helps them recognize common chunks within words. This can help students decode new words when reading, and spell words when writing. For example cat would be broken up into 'c' is the onset and 'at' is the rime. They help children learn about word families, which can lay the foundation for future spelling strategies. We will still be reviewing the sounds of the alphabet so keep practicing these too.
Following success with onset and rime, the students will begin looking at CVC (consonant, vowel, consonant) words and how to blend the 3 sounds (zip them up) and segment the 3 sounds (unzip them).

Here is a video explaining 'Preparing for Reading' where the 'onset and rime' stage fits.

Diana Rigg. Preparing for reading.

Fairy Tales.
Our Literature focus this term will be on Fairy Tales.  Fairy tales serve well to develop oral language skills and support early reading and writing. 
Please make some time to read your child fairy tales over the next few weeks.  Talk about the tales. Who are the characters. Decide who are the good characters and the bad.  Did the story have any messages? What was the setting for the story? Is this fairy tale similar to any other tale that you have read? Take time to READ the Pictures.  


We will be looking at the all important 'teen' numbers this term. We will focus on what each number looks like as a numeral, word, tally, in a ten frame, as pictures and where it sits on a number line (what number comes before and after it).  Another focus will be on pattern - where we see it in the world, identifying patterns and making our own pattern.

If you have any questions don't hesitate to come and see us.

Thank you,
Julie and Gemma 

Wednesday, 11 April 2018

ABC Celebration Day Commonwealth Games Day! ? !

We have had a bit of a cross over with our ABC Celebration Day and Mrs Sinclair's Commonwealth Games Day activities.
Mrs Sinclair is aware of this and is happy for the children to be wearing their ABC Celebration Day Costumes.
Please put their sand shoes in their bag so they can put them on at sports time.

I will not be at school on Friday and would like to take this opportunity to thank all parents for their wonderful support in Term One and wish you all a very relaxing school holiday break with lots of sleep ins and family time. 

Take care,
Julie Birch 

Wednesday, 4 April 2018

ABC Celebration Day

Alphabet Celebration Day.
We have nearly finished reviewing all the letters of the alphabet.  This gives cause for a celebration!  
So on next Thursday the 12th of April we will have a Alphabet Celebration Day.  
We ask parents to help the children to select their favourite letter of the alphabet (we suggest that you guide them to one that they may have trouble recalling) and based on that letter do the following;
1. Come to school dressed up as something that begins with that letter.
2. Make a display poster about that letter.  This poster should have the letter clearly displayed and pictures of things that have that initial sound.  These pictures can be hand drawn, cut out from magazines or printed from the computer.  Labels can be written on the pictures.  You are welcome to include anything else on the poster that begins with the letter that you can find.  Eg.  If doing 's' a cliplock bag of seeds. The children should complete as much of this as possible themselves. 
If you need poster paper then ask Mrs Young or Mrs Birch. 

During the course of the day the children will have opportunity to describe their costume and their reasons for selecting that letter sound.  They will also present their poster and share what they have compiled.  

We will also need 6 parent helpers on the day. 9.00am - 11.00am. Please let Mrs Birch know if you are available please. 

If the staff have been looking a little weary...there is a good reason. 
As I mentioned in the newsletter we have just completed our Early Childhood NQS Audit.  This has been a HUGE amount of work for all early childhood staff but well worth while.  We have met the requirements of Quality Area 1 which less than 10% of schools audited in the last couple of years have met.  That is an outstanding conclusion to two years of hard work, further studies and general preparation. 
The good practice that evolved from this process has been recognised and tomorrow I will be travelling to a SouthWest Early Childhood Network meeting to share our journey and in so doing help other schools to achieve positive outcomes. 
Miss Holt will be dismissing the children at the end of the day so please call out your child's name if she looks unsure. 

Pillows There are still a number of rather LARGE PILLOWS that need to be replaced with smaller ones.  If you could do this ASAP I would be very appreciative as the storage of these large pillows is a constant issue. 

Parent Teacher Interviews.
Thank you to the parents who attended interviews today.  It was great to have a chat about your lovely children.
There are still two families who have not put their name on a time slot on the parent teacher interview timetable.  Please do so tomorrow (Thursday). If there are no times available that work for you please let me know and we will find a time. 
Most interviews are next week. Please make sure you have made note of your time slot so you don't forget! Your children can play in the back of the classroom while we chat if you wish. 

Wednesday, 21 March 2018

Whole School Easter Raffle
Just a reminder that each child is asked to bring in an Easter egg as a donation to the school Easter raffle. There is a red box under the table at the entry to the classroom for you to put your donation into.

Pre primary Easter Hat Parade
Each morning during Holy week the classes from Year 1-6 will be a performing a liturgy at 9am in the hall. Everyone is more than welcome to come along. The Pre primaries will be involved by holding an Easter Hat Parade on Thursday morning (29th March).

Easter Hat Making
On Wednesday 28th March the Pre primaries will be making Easter hats/bonnets ready for the Easter parade on Thursday morning. We will be making them from 2 - 3pm Wednesday afternoon and we will need lots of parent helpers. If you are able to help please write your name on our parent helper roster.
The children will need to bring in items to decorate their Easter hats with (stickers, coloured eggs, ribbon, streamers etc and something to use as a hat. An old hat or an ice cream bucket are fine.
Please put your child's items in plastic bag, write their name on it.  The bags can be placed on the floor near the sink in PPB.

Parent Interviews
At the end of Term 1 we will have compulsory parent/teacher interviews where we will discuss your child's progress and where they are heading with their learning. Please place your name along side a time that suits on the Parent Interview Roster. This is inside the classroom by the Parent Help roster.
Interviews will take about 10 minutes and will take place from 3.10pm on Wednesday 4th, Tuesday 10th, Wednesday 11th April and Thursday the 12th of April.