Newsletter - 2nd August 2023
9th, 16th, 23rd & 30th August; 6th & 13th September: Combined Schools' Days at St Brendan's, Dunnstown
7th August: Sacramental Program 3.45pm-5pm @ St Brendan's Eucharist / Confirmation
8th August: St Mary of the Cross Feast Day, Whole School Prayer at 2:45pm
10th August: Little Feet, Big Footprint Excursion at St Brigid's, Ballan, 9:30am-3:00pm
13th August: Eucharist and Confirmation Mass at Bungaree, 8:45am
23rd August: Book Week Dress Up Day
30th August: Bush Dance at the Bungaree Community Centre, 6:00-8:00pm
3rd September: Father's Day, 7:45am at St Mary's
12th September: Years 3, 4, 5 and 6 Sports day with St. Michael’s at Daylesford
14th September: Last Day of Term 3 for students
15th September: Pupil-free day
2nd October: 1st Day of Term 4
As you will all know by now, last week I announced that I would be resigning as Principal at the end of the 2023 school year with a plan to ease into retirement. It was not an easy decision however, as I wrote ‘In so many ways I feel that the timing is right for the school and myself. My goal was to always resign when the school was in a good spot and I believe that is now. I am so proud of the way families, staff and students have worked together to achieve all we have over the past 4 years despite a number of challenges. There is so much to celebrate.’
The process to begin recruiting a new Principal will start next week, with filming taking place yesterday. The aim will be to appoint someone in Term 4, with a Term 1, 2024 start date.
I have every confidence that a new Principal will bring new energy and continue to build upon the work we have started as a thriving school community.
Many of our senior students are preparing for the Sacraments of Eucharist and Confirmation with one more session to take place next Monday. This year we are doing something slightly different and following the Diocesan program of running a Sacramental Program that is family based, parish coordinated and school supported. The feedback has been positive and we thank Dianne Reynolds for running the program.
We invite all families to Mass on Sunday, the 13th of August at 8.45am at Bungaree where the children will receive their sacraments.
The children involved are - Billy and Jai Brit, Felicity Ryan, Adele Leonard, Sophie Dash, Jack Lenaghan, Leo Denman, Kamden and Evie Singline.
We ask that you support and pray for these children during the coming weeks.
Little Feet, Big Footprints
Our Year 6 children will have their second day for the Little Feet, Big Footprints Program at Ballan on Thursday, the 10th of August. They will join St. Augustine’s Creswick, St. Pat’s Gordon and St. Michael’s Daylesford for a Liturgy, a session with Fr. Justin on Catholic Social Teachings, lunch and time to work in groups on a project of their choice. The children really enjoy these days as they have a clear purpose, as well as time to learn and socialise together. Many of the children will make connections with children who will go to the same secondary school in 2024.
Thank you to all of the parents that made the time to meet with your child’s teacher/s. There are many opportunities to have a chat during the term and it is important to make sure that the PTC conversations are timetabled and conducted as a more formal way of sharing your child’s leaning and setting goals.
It is part of our Vision to:
- building positive relationships
- ensuring a safe, supportive and inclusive environment that promotes high outcomes and celebrates achievements
- providing relevant and purposeful opportunities for growth
- working in collaborative partnerships to provide high quality, stimulating and evidence informed learning
Our Parent / Teacher / Child conversations support these.
If you haven’t had the opportunity and wish to have your time, please contact your child’s teacher.
Staff have been working on setting dates for the rest of Term 3 so that parents can plan ahead.
These have been decided upon –
10th August – Thursday. LFBF Year 6 children
13th August – Sunday First Eucharist and Confirmation Mass
23rd August – Wednesday. Book Week Dress up Day
30th August - Wednesday . Bush Dance for all families 6 – 8pm
1st September – Friday at SM . Father’s Day Breakfast and Liturgy
12th September – Tuesday. Years 3, 4, 5 and 6 sports day with St. Michael’s at Daylesford
15th September – Friday. Last day of term. Pupil Free Day.
We are now working to firm up some dates in Term 4 and will get these out to you soon.
Remember to keep checking in with the school calendar.
Take care everyone. Go as gently as possible.
Feast of Saint Mary MacKillop - 8 August
Mary Helen MacKillop was born in 1942 in Victoria to Scottish immigrant parents and grew up with seven brothers and sisters. At the age of twenty-four, she dedicated her life to God and took on the name "Mary of the Cross".
Mary was an ordinary woman with an extraordinary dream and a big heart. Her dream was to give the poorest families and most neglected children across to education and safe shelter by opening schools. With what little resources they had, Mary and Father Tenison Woods turned an old stable into a school in Penola, South Australia.
In 1866, Mary and Father Tenison worked together to set up the Sisters of St Joseph of the Sacred Heart (the Josephites). This was the first religious order to be founded by an Australian.
As a passionate educator, Mary broke through the prejudice of the early 19th century to educate all - regardless of gender, race, faith, or wealth. She and the Sisters of St Joseph went wherever the need was greatest. They give up everything to live and teach amongst the people they served.
What is a Feast Day?
All Saints have dedicated Feast Days when they are remembered with special mention and prayers. Mary MacKillop's Feast Day is on 8th August, which is the day she died.
Mary's Feast Day is a wonderful time to reflect on the qualities and actions that set her apart, and how her legacy continues to be relevant today.
Mary MacKillop fiercely believed in the power of education to life communities out of poverty. Education in Australia is what it is today, thanks in large part to the dedication and determination of Mary and the Sisters of St Joseph.
You are invited to attend our whole School Prayer to celebrate the Feast of St Mary MacKillop on Tuesday, 8th August at 2:45pm.
Learning in the Senior Room
Term 3 has started well with lots of great learning happening in the senior room. It’s hard to believe it’s already week 4!
Last week we used a new online platform, Elastik, to complete a writing assessment task. Similar to our cold writes, students were given a prompt and a specified amount of time to write/type a story. The platform is capable of assessing the writing, giving different elements a score and suggestions for improvement. These are used in feedback discussions with the student. On Friday, there was an opportunity for the students to take on the feedback and make improvements.
“I liked Elastik because we get our results quickly and it tells me what I need to work on. For example, I need to work on my punctuation”. Chloe
“I liked Elastik because it tells you how you were going in your writing. After my writing it told me that I had to work on my characters and next time I'll explain my characters more.” Will
“Elastik was ok. It is good that it gives you the information straight back. I need to be more descriptive in my writing.” Sull
Our Inquiry topic this term is “Australia’s Neighbours.” We will be learning more about the countries located close to Australia, their lands and their people. As an introduction to the unit, we have been exploring the world map, learning about the continents and where they are located along with the oceans and many countries.
“Last week in inquiry I learnt that the closer you get to the Equator the hotter it gets. The Equator is an invisible line in the middle of the world getting the most sunlight making it the hottest. Some of Australia's Neighbouring Countries are hotter than Australia because they're closer to the Equator.” Tara
On Friday we participated in a fun and energetic dance program called ‘Footsteps.” Via the TV we are talked through the different moves for a dance. We get to watch and practise over and over again. It was lots of fun. We will learn a different dance each week.
This term the seniors are completing a novel study. One group is reading the book “Once”. Here are a few of their thoughts on the book so far.
This Term I’m in a book club reading ‘Once’ I have really enjoyed sharing how the book is going and sharing our emotions. This book is engaging and can pull on some heart strings but it is an exciting book. I am excited to read all the chapters and hear all about it.
Once is a book about a little Jewish boy Felix who has been in the orphanage for 3 years and 8 months due to Adolf Hitler killing all Jews. Felix thought when he got a full carrot in his soup his parents would come and bring him home. Felix's parents sent him to the orphanage to keep him safe from the nazis but one day the nazis came along to burn the Jewish books and capture the Jewish kids but Felix ran away to save his parents bookshop and on the way he found a river he looked at the river and saw red blood flowing through. He just thought it was hunters shooting rabbits but was it? Maeve
Before we started reading it I thought it was going to be boring because I'm not a big fan of history books but when I started the Once book it was really interesting. I’m excited to finish it and find out what will happen next. Chloe
We are reading the book Once. At the start it looked bad because it was just not my type of book but now I’ve grown to like it a lot. It is good to learn about it because it plays a big part in our history. I am looking forward to reading the rest of the book. Evie
Junior Room News
It has been busy, busy, busy in the Junior Room these past two weeks. We have been learning and growing. Please see some examples of our work below.
Monday Writing Activity: Adelaide
On Friday I had a half day off school because the puppies were ready. I was so excited about getting the puppies, they are so cute. I love them so much, they are the best puppies I have ever seen in my life.
We have to keep them away from Balie. We have to give Balie attention so that he won't get aggressive with them. They love me and William, we love them too. Of course we love Balie too. We love all our dogs!
All About Me: Jeremiah
My name is Jeremiah
My name has 7 phonemes.
My name has 4 syllables.
My name has 4 vowel phonemes.
The phonemes using the Thrass chart are:
J as in jam
E as in bed
R as in rain
E as in bed
M as in mouse
I as in tiger
AH as in * for bus.
The Bible: Quinn
There are two parts of the Bible. The first is the Old Testament and it has stories about the people of God and the second part is the New Testament which has stories about Jesus. We have been learning about the Creation story, Noah and the Flood and Moses at the Burning Bush. These stories all have symbols in them like water to wash clean, light and dark, flame as the light, the number 7 and the number 40, new life, rainbow as God’s promise.
A Number Bond is two numbers that add together to make one number, Part/Part/Whole.
Repeated addition is the same as multiplication:
4+4+4+4+4+4 = 6 x 4 = 24
This week we are sharing the book Wombat Stew by Marcia K Vaughan in class. My favourite part of the book is when the Dingo dances and sings around the billy can because we dance and sing too, pretending to be Dingo. The wombat was lucky because he didn't go in the wombat stew, the other animals tricked Dingo.
We have been learning to understand procedural texts. There are different kinds of procedural texts that give us information and instructions. My favourite type are recipes. We made a jam sandwich with fresh bread, butter and plum jam and it was yummy. We had to follow the instructions even though they were a little bit different to how I would normally make a sandwich.
Next week is the Feast Day of St Mary Mackillop, our first Australian saint. We have learnt that people are still helping people in need to get a better education. They are working in Timor Leste and Fiji, two of Australia’s closest island neighbours. They are teaching the children and the school teachers to teach. We will celebrate St Mary Mackillop next week here at school.
Child Safety Information – all on website
As is stated on our Vision and Mission, our schools ‘…are committed to the safety, wellbeing and inclusion of all children and young people.’ Our procedures and policies are now in line with the 11 Child Safe Standards and can be found on the St Mary's website under the tab – Child Safety.
Working With Children Check
Parents are reminded to submit a copy of their WWCC into Claire at the Office. Your card will then be kept in a confidential file for future reference when planning excursions, events, etc. Volunteer WWCC can easily be obtained via online at https://service.vic.gov.au/services/working-with-children. Thank you.
Congratulations to Sullivan who is celebrated his 12th birthday on 25th July. We hope you had a fantastic day Sully!
A big happy birthday to Kamden who turned 9 on 30th July. We hope you celebrated well, Kamden!
Birthdays in the next two weeks include Evie who will be celebrating her 11th birthday on Tuesday, 8th August and Patrick Rafter who is turning 12 on Saturday, 12th August. Congratulations and special birthday wishes to you both!