We are officially half-way through the term and there are some tired little (and big) people about the place. Week 6 was a particularly busy week with 2 days of Outdoor Education, 2 days of Water Safety/Aquatics lessons, a school tour for 2024 enrolments, a couple of classes at Beach School and a well-attended assembly.
Student leadership is a particular focus of mine this year with extra opportunities for leadership across the student group. I mentioned this in my last blog and am pleased to say that things are progressing well in this area. Our Assembly leaders ran their first assembly for the year on Wednesday Week 6 and did a great job. It is particularly pleasing to see how responsive their fellow students are and how well they listen to and engage with their peers.
Young Leaders and House Captains have been elected and had their first meetings. Visual Arts Leaders have started working with Ms Baumann and have some exciting projects in the pipeline. Choir Leaders will be finalised soon and our Student Tour Guides have supported me exceptionally well on two tours so far. The presence of the students on the parent tours has been met with great positivity and the students have demonstrated an honest, informative and articulate view of the school. Each of the students have offered something different to the tour and I have been proud of their efforts. I expect that I will be in the background of the tours by Term 4 and the students will be in charge. This is an exciting prospect.
There has been an improvement in behaviour on the soccer pitch with the introduction of our 3×3 lunchtime competitions. In Week 7 we begin our second Year 5/6 tournament and our first Year 3/4 tournament. I plan on these running concurrently on Tuesday and Thursday lunchtimes with those teams who have a bye supporting the other matches. Due to the number of teams, I may need to add a third lunchtime to the roster but that remains to be seen.
Our plan is that next term, our Year 5/6 team members each coach a team of 3 Junior Primary students in a similar competition. This is another exciting prospect and a great opportunity to further develop student leadership.
We also have 2 lunchtime groups happening now in the library that are being led by Noah and Riley from Ms Eldridge’s class. They have a board games group and a homework group that are on separate days and are supervised by Tina in the library. The early feedback is positive and there has been good attendance at the sessions.
My next step is to provide leadership opportunities in the areas of curriculum and communication. There has been some interest shown by a couple of students and I am looking forward to seeing where they can have authentic input.
We are working towards leadership as a disposition/behaviour and not a title.
Madhavi Nawana Parker
On Wednesday 15th March at 6:30pm, we have the first opportunity for families to attend a session being run by Madhavi Nawana Parker. She has presented at our school previously and it was one of the most common sense, practical and useful sessions I have attended.
We have 2 sessions timetabled and they will both be the same so you only need to attend one of them. Either the 15th March at 6:30pm or the 20th March at 1:30pm can be attended.
The sessions will be held in the gym or the library depending on the number of attendees. Please RSVP by phoning the school 8382 2455 or email.
Week 7 sees the NAPLAN testing window open across Australia. We have scheduled the assessments for Wednesday to Friday with catch-up tests in the following week. Our 1:1 Chromebooks will assist in lessening the logistical challenges that can occur when trying to move students from Years 3 to 6 around the school.
It is important to remember that these are just one of the number of assessments that are conducted at school. Our students have already participated in a number of different assessments this year and NAPLAN is just another one. There should be no pressure attached to this despite what you might read or hear in the media. It is a snapshot of one hour in one day for each assessment.
Our students are more than academic creatures or numbers on a spreadsheet. They are a precious, kind and highly varied team of individuals. No two students are the same and we wouldn’t want them to be. While we are spending time on the NAPLAN assessments, we need to be remembering the strengths of each child and what they bring to school each day. We need to shift the focus from ‘how well is my child doing?’ to ‘what can my child do well?’.