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Newman News Term 3 Week 2: From the Leader of Primary

30 Jul 2021

It is a great pleasure to welcome back all families to the beginning of another term, though if you are like me, you might be scratching your head wondering how we found ourselves in the middle of another year so quickly!

One of the most important things we speak with students about when beginning a new term is the expectations we have for them. This includes not only the ways we want students to engage in class and the approach they take to their learning, but also the expectations we have for students in how they treat each other and interact in the classroom and playground. This year, the College has been working to develop some important norms and non-negotiables around both the teaching and learning of students, and the behaviours and actions of students. These have been designed with one thing in mind – community. It is about creating a safe, consistent experience for all students and staff within our school, and makes clear and visible the things that are most important when it comes to creating an effective learning environment. These norms will become an important focus for students over the course of this term, and the year ahead. It is my hope that all students can achieve the behaviours and actions that have been set out, and work to help build a strong community of learners that reflect the Marist values of our College.

Click here to view the Newman College Norms.

Highlights from Past Two Weeks

Parent Teacher Interviews 

I would like to thank all of the students, families, and teachers for the positive way they engaged in the parent-teacher interview process. It was great to walk around the campus and see lots of conversations taking place, goals being discussed, and plans put in place for another semester of learning. Parents should know that even though we offer a formal meeting period throughout the year, they are welcome to be in touch with their child’s teacher at any time to discuss the learning or progress of their child. We look forward to building on the positive parent-teacher relationships over the second half of the year.

Cross Country 

Last week we ran the final race of our Cross Country Carnival – a re-racing of our Year 5 boys race! We were fortunate to enjoy some beautiful weather, and it was great to see students enjoying the event so much. A big congratulations to Luke Rombouts, Dylan Hookway, and Mitchell Short who were crowned as our winners for the day. The final results of the carnival will be announced at next week’s assembly. Meanwhile, students have been busy preparing in the cool early mornings before school for the Interschool Cross Country Carnival which takes place in a couple of weeks time in Bunbury. We are sure all of our runners will do us proud! 

Dance Troupe 

Students in the Lavalla Dance troupe have been very busy lately rehearsing for the Wakakirri Festival – a national competition that invites schools to present a story-dance that reflects students’ thoughts, ideas, and aspirations. Our students will have one of their final rehearsals for this event on Monday 2 August, with a community performance taking place in the Marist Auditorium at 2.45pm which all families are welcome to attend. Students will then perform at the Wakakirri concert later that week at the Parth Concert Hall on Thursday 5 August. We wish our students all the best as they compete, and recognise the efforts of students, families, and especially our Performing Arts teacher Amy Raveendrakumar, in helping students be ready for the day!

Arts Club

We have been very fortunate this year to have an Arts Club running each lunchtime on Tuesdays under the guidance of some of our Year 6 students. I am very proud of the lengths these girls have gone to, to provide an experience for many of our younger students, and their dedication to giving back to their school community. Their actions this year are the best example yet of how leadership is not about wearing a badge, it is about actions and they example we set for others. This term, students attending Arts Club will be working on designing a puppet for a competition, with winning entries having the chance to have their puppet constructed by a team of professionals. We are very grateful to the Year 6 girls who have taken this venture on, and also to our Visual Arts teacher Amy Farrell who has helped guide the girls this year too.

Parent messaging

It has come to our attention that towards the end of last term, and this term also, some parents have been messaging their children directly during class time via the iPad, and students messaging parents directly also. I cannot explain how distracting this can be in the day of a student and the interruptions it can cause to learning. It can also create problems in the office when parents arrive unexpectedly to collect their children. If students or parents need to contact each other during the day, it is to occur through a phone call to the office where we can deliver any messages to students. Students will be reminded next week that any messaging during class time falls outside the appropriate use of ICT and a consequence will be put in place as per the school’s ICT policy. If you are concerned for your child during the day, please just let you child’s teacher know and we can be in touch to offer support.

Coder Dojo

Coder Dojo will recommence in Week 3 on Tuesdays from 3.30pm – 4.30pm. All students are welcome to attend, if they would like to take part in coding activities

Lost Property

In the school holidays, I visited my Mum and was telling her about the large amount of lost property we seem to accumulate at the school. We can have a laugh about it now, but when I was at school, coming home without your jumper or school blazer meant you might as well start packing your bags and hit the road! My Mum, who grew up in Ireland as a young girl, told me how they had one jumper in school, and if you lost it there was no replacing it. She can even remember as a child taking knitting and sewing lessons as a Year 4 student, where they would make their jumper for the following school year! I wonder what would happen if made kids do that today! In all seriousness though, many of our lost property issues can be solved if students or parents label their child’s clothes and hats. While teachers encourage students to look after their things as much as possible, it is the responsibility of the student to care for and look after their things. Hopefully this term, we will see a reduction in the number of school blazers, hats, and sports jackets especially which seem to make up the bulk of our items.

Important Information For The Next Two Weeks

There are a very busy couple of weeks ahead in the Lavalla calendar. Look out for the following events on the horizon:

  • Wakakirri Dance Troupe Community Performance – Monday 2 August
  • BRLA Testing Year 5 – Wednesday 4 August
  • BRLA Testing Year 3 – Thursday 5 August
  • Wakakirri Dance Concert – Thursday 5 August
  • 3 Green Assembly – Friday 6 August
  • Wellbeing Week – Monday 9 August – Thursday 12 August
  • Assumption Buddy Day – Tuesday 10 August
  • IPSHA Cross Country – Thursday 12 August
  • Pupil Free Day – Friday 13 August