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Hello everyone,

A quiet week in preschool with many children away due to various illnesses including coughs, colds and runny noses. A huge thank you to families for keeping unwell children at home where they can get the rest they need to recover quickly as well as prevent their illness from spreading to others.

We had a wonderful time at the Indigenous performance with Nyumbar on Monday. The cleansing ceremony, having the opportunity to have our faces painted, learning and then participating in a whole school farewell ceremony was really special. We’ve been extending on this by focussing on Dreamtime stories during intentional teaching times.

We’ve been enjoying music and singing over the last couple of weeks. Singing has always been a big part of preschool though with COVID, lockdowns, and loads of restrictions in place for the last couple of years we haven’t been able to. With the easing of restrictions, we are now able to sing, so we’ve seized the opportunity to do so! It’s been so gorgeous to see how much the children are enjoying this and how quickly they are picking up the words to songs. On Monday we had Mel (a music teacher) come and pose the question “What is Music” to the preschool children. A tricky concept for young people to articulate, though something that evokes many emotions for them.

There’s been a lot of cooking in preschool this week. We’ve made a couple of soups and some bread as well as banana bread muffins. It’s great to see many of the children giving new foods a try. Natural yoghurt, pumpkins, lentils, and lots of interesting fruits and vegetables are being brought in by families to share with the group.

We’re really excited to be venturing out and about in the wider Lane Cove community soon. From week 6 on a fortnightly basis, we’ll be heading up to Lane Cove Library to have the Librarians read stories to us. We’ll then have the opportunity to borrow a book (these need to stay at school). We’re planning on starting our park visits soon, so, stay tuned for more information about this. Next Friday, May 27th, we plan on walking up to the plaza as a group to be part of the audience at Children’s Voices for Reconciliation!

That’s it for this week!

Love

Lisa, Michael and Katrina

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Week 4 already, wow! And it is day 65 of learning … We’re looking forward to celebrating when we get to 100 days.

We’ve had LOTS of students away sick especially at the start of the week. We wish those students and their families a speedy recovery. Hopefully we’ll have the full class back soon as we miss everyone when they’re away!

Just a gentle reminder, it would be great if all parents could leave as close to 9.15 as possible. It gives us a chance to set up for the day. If your child is finding mornings difficult or having trouble separating, we recommend arriving as close to 8.30 as you can, as it gives them a chance to settle in.

This week we’ve been learning about addition in maths! When we count to find the total we have to make sure we touch each counter or drawing with one to one correspondence. We’ve also been trying to learn how to do some adding in our heads, as an extra challenge, by visualising dice patterns, and maybe nodding our heads or clapping our hands to keep track. Being able to visualise numbers and do some mental maths is the next step after 1:1 counting.

We’ve been getting deeper into phonics, reading, and spelling with our first 8 letters in the sequence that we will learn this year. This week your children will bring home their first book, “Sat”, that they can read to you and draw pictures to match! It is decodable, as it uses only letters we know how to blend and camera words we know how to read.

We had our first music session which was lovely. It included a discussion about what music means to everyone, expressing different sounds with our voices, and we also “notating” some sounds by drawing them with different symbols, lines, and dots.

We did beading in art and watercolour painting in classroom craft. The Aboriginal dance program on Tuesday was fantastic, and the students enjoyed learning two dances and different language words for Australian animals.

In Child Protection we learnt about body clues: the warning signs our bodies show that we’re feeling uncomfortable and need to talk to an adult we trust.

We’ve been trying to “beat the clock” to get faster at packing away, our record is 5 minutes! Let’s see if we can keep that up, haha! Maybe they can practise by helping you at home! ;)

Lots of love, Emma and Vinnie

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Dear Parents,

The name of our class is in flux! We were “The Little Penguins, then “The Puppies” and now this week we are “The Little Demons”. We are certainly not at a consensus with the name, however, and I anticipate further suggestions, discussions and votes in the coming weeks. Who knows what I’ll be calling out next “inside time for the…”

This week we’ve been digging a little deeper into our curiosity about the sky and we had a lovely session of brain-storming all the things we wanted to learn about in relation to “Up in the Air and Beyond!”. There was an interest in space, the planets, aeroplanes, air, oxygen, gravity, parachutes, balloons, kites, clouds, wind, rain, snow, a range of animals including birds and insects, and so much more. There’s no way we’ll cover all these interests this term, but we will be able to investigate some of them. In writing on Wednesday, we looked at a David Attenborough documentary clip about the fascinating Lyrebird and listened to it copy the sounds of other birds and man-made sounds like chainsaws and car alarms. As we’ve also been looking at money recently, it was fun to notice the Australian Lyrebird on the 10-cent piece.

On Thursday Meg led a gorgeous art lesson linked to our themed learning and based around live wind patterns/maps and Vincent Van Gough‘a “Starry Night”. I’ve included a few photos in the newsletter. Thank you Meg!

In maths, we are continuing to explore the ‘split strategy’ in addition by using tens blocks to rearrange two large numbers into one. We are also continuing with our exploration of measurement and will be exploring area and surface on Thursday.

The Nyumar dance incursion on Tuesday was fantastic! Des and Isaac were wonderful leaders who were very generous in sharing their special dances with us. I was so impressed by the children for their respectful participation and their eagerness to learn. We had a very sensitive conversation after our dance session when some children expressed their knowledge of the invasion of Australia and the ways in which Aboriginal people have been struggling for recognition and equality since. This conversation dove-tailed quite nicely with another theme running through our classroom at the moment which is about family, heritage, and connection with our roots. Many children noted that they had family overseas and in other places far away from their home in Sydney.

I have now emailed out a volunteer roster for this term so please get online and sign up if this is something you can manage.

I’m very much looking for our spontaneous whole school excursion to the Powerhouse museum on Monday!

Wishing you all a restful weekend,
Jess xxx

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Jingirri (Hello)

Brrrrrr…… these mornings are now getting chilly and tis time to start wearing an extra layer (or two) of clothing to school. We’ve had a lovely week this week immersing ourselves in singing, storytelling, and dance. On Monday morning we had our first lesson with Mel who is here for 3 weeks to teach music. We spent this time sharing our thoughts on what music is; what it means to us and what we would like to learn. We then used various instruments to finish the session with an improvisation. Monday saw Lorraine teach her first lesson where she introduced and reviewed: What is a Noun? The children used one of our Dreaming stories to recognise the naming words in a sentence. Olya then followed on from this (on Tuesday) using Australian Birds to focus looking at words which describe a noun, i.e. adjectives. Also on Monday, we returned to Lane Cove library where most of us found books to borrow to help support with the research of our personal projects.

On Tuesday, we participated in Ngahri an Aboriginal Dance program. Dez and Isaac from Nyumbar (Teach-Show-Guide) were the educators who came to teach us. We began the morning as a whole school with a sweeping ceremony – removing all negative energies – and the Preschool did their Acknowledgement to Country. Throughout the day each class had an individual workshop where we learnt Aboriginal names for an Echidna, Kangaroo, and Emu, and practiced different moves to represent these animals. We ended the day with a whole school gathering and dancing together. It was a beautiful experience and wonderful learning opportunity for all of us.

Thankyou, to Kitty for bringing to class her book for us to read on Aboriginal bush fire burning. The story is presented by Uncle Kuu and is called “Looking after Country with fire” written by Victor Steffensen. It’s a story which focuses on how to control wildfires to keep the land happy and healthy. It also came with a link to a song: “Cool Burning”, which we have been learning to sing.

For Maths we focused on solving Multiplication word problems. The group were given a problem in words to then solve using pictures, arrays, and a number sentence. Next, we will be looking at the relationship multiplication has with division. Lorraine and Olya did some team teaching on Thursday, this time focusing on Verbs and Adverbs, and they ended their first week with an assessment task on all concepts they have taught thus far. It’s so great to have such enthusiastic and engaged students with us.

You may/may not be aware that the neighbours house which was demolished during Term 1 is now well and truly making a resurgence. Each and every day it grows and grows and, I feel, will, unfortunately, become a bit of an eye sore from our light filled classroom. As it draws the children’s attention – tis hard not to – I am thinking we might create some drawings of what we think the end product will or should look like. Just for fun!

Next Monday, we have been told by Ausgrid the school will be without power for the entire day. We are therefore using this as a sign to go walkabout and will be visiting The Powerhouse museum. Buses will be taking all children in primary there and back and we will have lunch somewhere in Darling Harbour. Please make sure your child has a good lunch packed, water bottle, hat, warm clothes, shoes and a raincoat or umbrella. We will need to be prepared for all outcomes.

Thankyou, to those parents who have offered to drive us to our excursion on the 23rd June. We now have enough wheels to get us there and back.

I think that’s us for another week folks. Stay safe and warm.

Love, Sarah

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It has been quite chilly this week, which reminds us all to bring extra layers to keep warm. We have had a fantastic time exploring a range of concepts and also continuing to read our class novel ‘Nevermoor’ by Jessica Townsend.

On Monday, Caitlin, our student teacher started with us for her 10-day practicum. She has been working with the children and getting to know them throughout the week. We also had our first music session with Melanie. The lesson centred on what music is, what would you expect to do in a music lesson, and improvisation.

Sound Waves for this week focused on the sound ‘ai’, ‘ay’, ‘a_e ‘,and ‘a’, as in snail, hay, cake and lady. The children completed activities on homophones and adding suffixes to words, which revised our spelling rules.

In Mathematics, we continued our topic on time, including reading analog and digital clocks, timelines, and conversions between seconds, minutes, hours, and days. The children will be completing a work sample to show their understanding over the next week.

Our new topic for the term is Before Contact, which looks at Australia’s First Peoples. We looked at the AIATSIS map of Indigenous Australia, which attempts to represent the language, social or nation groups of Indigenous Australia. On Tuesday, Dez and Issac from Nyumbar Aboriginal Education came to Currambena to teach Ngahri (dance) program. We learnt two dances: Yunu Munyana, which is a farewell dance, and Dhinawan Waganha, which is a shared dance. We also learnt the Wiradjuri words for kangaroo, echidna and emu. The children had an opportunity to participate in a sweeping ceremony in our session as well. It was a wonderful experience for everyone to be a part of.

On Wednesday, I posed the question to the group, “Why is friendship important”. The children responded to this question independently in their books. Some responses were: “friends are helpful”, “friends are reliable and you can make memories with them”, “friendship is good for your mind” and “friends are extra family”. We will continue to explore friendships throughout the term.

Ausgrid has informed us that next Monday the school will have a power outage, so, the children voted in their classes for a day out. We are off to the Powerhouse Museum to explore the exhibitions. All children need to have morning tea, lunch, hat, water bottle, and good walking shoes. Could all children please be at school on time to be organised for the buses.

Have a great weekend everyone!

Leesa x

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Hi everyone.

We have three student teachers from Macquarie Uni in our room this week and next, so, there is plenty of adult attention to go around! Lots of help with textbooks when requested and time to chat and to listen. Amelie and Isabella are enjoying their first ever prac… Currambena must be the perfect placement for this… and Amelia is in her second last one. She will be with us for a few more weeks.

This week we are enjoying the sunshine, even though it is quite cold at times! The games of Pacman, inspired by the new markings on the basketball court, are full of energy. We are also enjoying our song playlist, with the group voting to increase the amount of time they can use for songs of their own choice. It was funny yesterday to walk into the room after morning tea to hear “Let it Go” being belted out by a small group sitting near the speaker! At other times, a group will take the speaker outside to dance furiously (at a secure distance from the phone) with the music!

Speaking of which, we had our first session with Mel, a musician, on Monday. Mel is doing three Mondays as artist/music teacher in residence. She has a multitude of connections with Currambena and alternative schools as well as wide experience with music, and our group enjoyed discussing what music actually is! Their answers were fascinating. We practised singing and playing “Beds Are Burning” for Mel… our performance in the plaza for the Lane Cove Reconciliation event is on Friday 27th May.

In English, we are doing plenty of writing and also reading texts to find certain language features and identify the author’s intentions and audience. It’s funny to find alliteration in a piece of informative writing, but that’s what we had yesterday! Spelling continues as usual and we are about to have a blitz on handwriting for some students.

In Maths, fractions are going really well. Amelia has done some excellent lessons on adding and subtracting fractions and converting from improper fractions to mixed numerals, amongst other things. It’s a large topic and will take us another week or two. Please remember to ask your children to practise times table at home with you. They will know which ones they should be working on.

Our Science unit is also going really well, with some fun experiments and plans. We investigated viscosity and surface tension this week and the group has voted (well, 13 of them have) that they’d like to dissect a mammal heart. Some research and serious planning will need to be done first!

At Class Meeting last week, the group decided to hold a Ball on Friday 10th June. This is the Friday of the long weekend… so I hope that works for everyone. I will be here but I need at least two parents to assist as chaperones.

I hope you enjoy the photos from the Nyumbar Dance incursion on Tuesday this week. It was great fun for everyone. I also hope you enjoy the story from Alex, below.
Next Monday, we have a whole school excursion to the Powerhouse Museum! See the note at the top of this Newsletter. Should be fun!

And lastly, please remember that school opens for children at 8:30 unless you have made a special arrangement for your child to arrive early. There is really no supervision before then. School officially begins at 9am so everyone should always be here by that time at the latest. Please always email to let me know if your child is going to be late. We keep records of lateness as well as absences.

Have a great week.

Love,
Wendy

An excerpt from ‘A Day in the Life of a Paper Note’.
I start my day in a factory where me, my brothers and sisters and my whole family are made. The factory is my home but I don’t get to stay there long once we get how much we are worth. We usually go to an ATM machine, but before we go to the ATM machine, I love bragging to my family that I am a $100 note and that I am simply better than all my family.
Once we are in the ATM, we wait and wait. It gets so boring. I wish I had took a pack of cards while I was still in the factory.
After a lot of waiting and a bit of bragging, some disgusting human comes and puts me in their wallet where I can see some of my family. We chat for ages before I get taken out of the yucky thing and then into another yucky thing until it gets really dark, then when I am just going to sleep, the human wakes me up and then I get shoved into something they call a pocket.
An hour later, I get taken out again, but this time I am not going into someone’s unhygienic hand, I am going into a matching that wants to eat me. HELP!
Written by Alex

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School Meeting Chaired by Emilie and Carrie

  • Bey Blades by Ash: Ash has lost a part to his Bey Blade, if anyone finds it can you please let him know.
  • Balls over the fence by Wendy: Wendy informed the school that some children had thrown balls over the fence. It was explained how dangerous this is and to never throw anything over any fence.
  • Concert by Wendy: Wendy congratulated everybody who performed in the concert last week.
  • Introduction by Crafty: Crafty introduced some teachers who are here visiting the school for the morning.
  • Welcome by Aurelia and Mabel: We welcome Olya and Lorraine (Student teachers) into our class.
  • Trash by Alex, Soren and Sophie: We had a very lengthy discussion about bringing back the black rubbish bins. It went to a vote. The majority voted we will have 3 rubbish bins place around the school and will ask Julianna to then ask the cleaners to empty these bins into 1 – lessening the amount of plastic garbage bin liners going to landfill.

End of School Meeting!

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Hi Everyone,

My apologies for no news last week. I had to fly out to NZ Tuesday night for the funeral of a family patriarch on Wednesday and his burial the following day. It was a mixture of sadness and a huge loss but then so much joy with the coming together of the families to catch up and share the stories.

Thank you to all those many hands that attended our maintenance Sunday. It was fabulous getting all the jobs completed. Thank you to Chris for coordinating the day.

Canteen - Thank you to Judy for getting this started again and to our volunteers that have cooked these last two weeks.

Playgroup is also back up running thanks to Valentina. It is so delightful to see our community coming back together again.

Urgent Reminder

Nominations for Currambena Council –

These must be into the office by 3.00pm this Friday 13th May.

Cheers, Julianna

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