Coming up this week
Tuesday 1 March
Kindergarten Readiness Night - 7:00-8:00pm
Monday 7 March
School Information Night - 7:00-8:00pm
Saturday 12 March
Family Fun Place
'A Place To Grow'
In This Issue
To work under God in partnership with parents to provide an inclusive, nurturing and high quality education for every student.
Flourishing through faith, belonging and the pursuit of excellence.
From The Principal
Engaging in the broader community
I’m a big fan of the 90s show The West Wing. In the series, President Bartlet goes from meeting to meeting, task to task. When one thing is finished, he’ll look to his staff and say, “What’s next”?
If you’re like me, this rings true. We may not have staff to remind us of our next thing, but we all have full calendars. When I get stuck into the ‘what’s next’ headspace, I lose focus on the bigger, global picture of the purpose behind what I’m doing. I forget about the why.
Thinking beyond school
As we partner in helping children grow, we can easily get caught up in the day-to-day lessons and activities, forgetting that our greatest purpose is to raise good humans that make a difference in the world. The third goal of our Strategic Plan continually reminds us that our children are not our future, they are our present. Our children can actively engage and make a difference globally and locally.
Strategic Plan Strategy 3: Engage with global and local communities
We want our young scholars to understand that their world and their learning extend beyond our physical campus. We aim to prepare today’s learners for tomorrow’s world by modelling inclusiveness, practicing effective communication, respecting diversity and meaningfully engaging in the world. Below are just some of the events and activities this year that move us toward that goal.
1 March: Shrove Tuesday
Our traditions connect us to the past and to community. Before there were Lutherans, the Catholic Church began a ‘season’, or 40 days, of fasting and repentance called Lent, leading to a celebration of forgiveness at Easter. If you’re going to fast for 40 days, it makes sense to have a good feast before that. Pancake breakfasts became a tradition called Shrove Tuesday, the day before Lent begins. On Shrove Tuesday, our young scholars will join members of Bethlehem Church for a pancake breakfast.
12 March: Year 6 leaders engage with the community (including you!) for Family Fun Day
It feels like we’ve been ‘fasting’ from fun family events for the past two years. The Family Fun Day is for YOU to connect with one another and for the wider community to experience many of the things that make us great: gardens, creative arts, robot programming, games on the oval and more! Our captains, leaders and other scholars will be welcoming families, guiding them through the scavenger hunt, leading games, showing families how to run Beebots and generally looking out for the needs of guests.
Term 1: Year 5s work with ALWS to positively affect those in Tonga impacted by the tsunami. The question for their study is this: How can we make a difference in the lives of people we may never meet?
25 April: ANZAC Day
Look for our Captains during the services at Victory Memorial Gardens.
Term 2: Classes (year levels TBD) create photographic art for the community, in partnership with F.stop
Just off Baylis Street is a photography studio called F.Stop. James and Patrick from F.Stop will partner with our Art and STEM teachers to help students think artistically with cameras. Some of their final pieces may be displayed in the wider Wagga community or at our Term 4 Sustainability Festival.
Semester 2: Year 6 students create nonprofit businesses, the proceeds of which go through ALWS toward microloans for entrepreneurs in developing countries. The unit is called “What’s My Business?”. You’ll hear about it more this year.
Throughout the Year:
We will continue to work with parents and students on the creation of a Reconciliation Action Plan (RAP). Please email [email protected] if you’d like to be part of this important work.
Term 4: Ask the new Kindergarten parents about the helpful videos made by our current Year 1 scholars. Instead of teachers telling parents what they can expect in Kindergarten, our 2021 Kindergarten students made helpful videos for our 2022 Kindergarten families. What a difference they made!
From The DEPUTY Principal
Parent Information Night
Due to Covid restrictions the Parent Information Nights have taken place via a Google Meet. I hope you found them useful for gaining information around your child’s learning, routines and expectations for the year. If you were unable to attend the sessions the slides will be posted on Seesaw for you to read.
Internet safety and appropriate use of electronic devices
This week Senior Constable Tim Bourke and one of his colleagues from Wagga Police spoke to the Year 5 and Team 6 students about internet safety and cyber bullying. SC Bourke has many years of experience of working with and supporting young people who have been the victims and perpetrators antisocial behaviours online. The sessions were a great opportunity for the students to listen, ask questions and learn.
When things go wrong online, they affect both home and school
Prior to the internet, most schools had the philosophy that schools would deal with issues at school and parents would deal with issues after school hours. In the age of the internet, the lines between school and home have blurred much like work and home life have been blurred for us adults. We have learned that issues that happen online after school hours affect learning at school.
In my role as Deputy Principal I work with students who, from time to time, make inappropriate choices while using a range of communication platforms. Whilst many of these incidents will occur at home during evenings and weekends, it is something the school will investigate and follow up.
It is important to understand and recognise that inappropriate social media choices impact on school learning and relationships. Poor choices online affect overall wellbeing, including how a child feels at school. Therefore we will have conversations with victims and perpetrators of cyberbullying as a school matter, following the processes outlined in our Behaviour Learning policy.
The advice I have given our students is: If they view something unkind or disrespectful on the internet they are to show their parents, take a screen shot and let the school know.
Even if you think an online issue is small, please share screen shots with us. Bullying doesn’t begin as bullying. It begins as mean or rude behaviours that are allowed to continue.
We partner best when we both help children learn the smaller lessons so that they don’t become bigger issues over time.
As parents/carers, I would encourage you to regularly check in with your child about their internet use and work out some agreed guidelines for the location of devices, the type of sites/apps used and the time spent on a device.
I just wanted to share again the government eSafety website. It is an excellent resource for parents and students to access.
From our end, we will continue to survey our students, giving them an opportunity to share with teachers anything that is bothering them – either online or in person at school. We will share issues of concern with you and hope you will share them with us.
Last Friday Pastor Dave from Bethlehem Lutheran Church was able to officially install our School Captain’s, Academic and Sport House Captains into their roles. Myself and other key members of staff look forward to working with these students in a variety of leadership roles throughout the year. Congratulations again to these students.
WITNESSES TO CHRIST: PEOPLE FROM HIS PASSION
John tells us why he wrote his Gospel: “Jesus did many other signs in the presence of the disciples, which are not written in this book; but these are written so that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that by believing you may have life in His name” (John 20:30–31).
Life! When we believe that Jesus is the Christ, God gives us life—abundant life, forgiven life, and eternal life.
Historically, the Fourth Gospel is likened to an eagle—an image that suggests John soars to heights of glory and grandeur. That’s because the evangelist paints a stunning portrait of Jesus, who is the bread of life, the resurrection and the life, and the way, the truth, and the life. Life in Jesus. That’s God’s gift to you!
This Lent, you are invited to join members of Bethlehem Church and learn more about our life in Christ through the witness of those in John’s Gospel who journeyed to the cross. Along the way, we’ll meet villains, such as Barabbas and Pontius Pilate, as well as sinners, such as Peter (who denied Jesus three times), Mary Magdalene (who was possessed by seven demons), and Judas Iscariot (who betrayed Jesus for thirty pieces of silver).
Please join us for worship as we hear the witness of these people in John’s Gospel:
- 2 March: Ash Wednesday – John the Baptist, John 1:29–34
- Midweek of Lent 1: Mary, the Sister of Lazarus and Martha, John 12:1–11
- Midweek of Lent 2: Malchus, John 18:1–11
- Midweek of Lent 3: Peter, John 18:12–27
- Midweek of Lent 4: Barabbas, John 18:33–40
- Midweek of Lent 5: Pontius Pilate, John 19:1–16
- 10 April: Palm Sunday – The Disciples, John 12:12–19
- 14 April: Maundy Thursday – Judas Iscariot, John 13:21–30
- 15 April: Good Friday – John, the Gospel Writer, John 19:25–37
- 17 April: Easter Sunday – Mary Magdalene, John 20:1–18
Pastor Dave Cherry
Bethlehem Lutheran Church
Preparing for Possible Isolation
We want to think it will never happen, but we know that Covid is a reality and can strike when we least expect. We are all feeling the pressure of the unknown.
Teachers have been carefully land creatively considering ways in which we can support both students at school and those that are isolating. The hard truth is that teachers, many of whom may need to isolate or work from home and support their own children, are unable to run both in-class and home learning.
We understand that this isn’t ideal for families at home who may need to isolate. You are juggling work and home requirements too.
What you can do to prepare
First and foremost, know this: If your child is sick, their only job is to rest and recover. As with any other illness, they are not expected to do any work while unwell.
Second, it is helpful to prepare for the possibility of you feeling unwell and having to look after your children in isolation. The following are recommended to have on-hand:
- Access to Seesaw (K-6) and Google Classroom (3-6)
- Devices at home to access online learning such as a Chromebook, a laptop, a desktop or an iPad
- Stationery – pencils, textas, scissors, gluesticks, etc.
- Scrapbooks, exercise books, paper, etc. in cases where teachers are able to upload lessons to Seesaw or Google Classroom
- Books to read and respond to: chapter books, picture books, information books, etc.
- Consider purchasing age-appropriate Maths and English workbooks that your child can work through independently. (Maths Mentals, handwriting, grammar, etc). Gateway Bookshop has lots of fantastic resources
- Access to documentaries, classic movies and children’s books series
As with other instances of home learning, we realise that every child will require a different level of support depending on their age. We understand that you can only do what you can do in the amount of time that you can give. Please don’t feel pressure – you need to rest and recover too!
Encourage your child to be independent, take responsibility and take risks with their learning. Ask them to help plan a daily routine for the days they are home. Encourage them to play, exercise and get outside is important. Play is essential for the developing brain.
We welcome you to communicate with your child’s classroom teacher via direct messaging on Seesaw. Teachers will respond before or after face to face teaching. If you have any further questions or concerns you are welcome to contact me to discuss the best way that we can work together to support your child when learning from home.
We look forward to having you all back on the school grounds. Our school community misses the busyness of drop off and pick-ups at the classroom door, the incidental conversations we have with you and the atmosphere that you as parents bring to our school.
Learning Innovation Coordinator
At Before School Care this week the children have been enjoying watching the sunrise and playing outside on the equipment.
Earlier in the week the children worked on butterfly sticker puzzles. The puzzles help children practise number recognition and fine motor skills.
The sand pit has also been very popular this week, the children have been building roads, walls and farms in the sand.
We look forward to another wonderful week.
UNIFORM SHOP - VOLUNTEER REQUIRED
The P&F are looking for a volunteer who can help run the uniform shop. This is a relaxed and fun job, a great way to meet families.
This role can be tailored to suit a busy lifestyle. Jobs include: receiving donations, opening the shop after or before school (as frequently as possible during first week of term) and then ad hoc/via appointment, checking for orders through the app, packing the app orders and delivering to the school office (where they are collected from).
Please phone Sally Ward on 0418 131 934 for further information.