It is fantastic to have the students back on site. The children have settled well and have once again made a successful transition back to face-to-face learning.
The routine is working well and will continue until further notice, fingers crossed we can return to normal school operations soon. Thank you to families for supporting the staggered pick up and avoiding congregating at the school gates.
It is important for all of us to follow the health advice by adhering to social distancing, wearing masks, not lingering in groups and all unwell students should not attend school.
School Concert 2021 - ‘Parkdale and the Genie’
At this stage our revised date for the school concert is Wednesday 8th September. This will be dependent on the easing of restrictions and capacity limits at The Palais Theatre.
Further information will be provided once we know more.
Curriculum Day – Wednesday 18th August
Wednesday 18th August is a Pupil Free Day. The staff will be undertaking Professional Learning with Lyn Stone. Our focus is on the Science of Reading.
Camp Australia will operate a Pupil Free Day on this day and parents will need to book directly through Camp Australia by Friday 13th August.
We wish Jason (OHSC) all the very best with his future endeavours and welcome Kaitlyn who will be taking over as the OHSC coordinator. Kaitlyn has a Diploma of School Age Education and Care and has previously worked as a Coordinator; she has also worked at the Mentone Holiday Club Program. Kaitlyn and Jason have done a hand over this week to allow for a smooth transition.
Parent Opinion Survey
The Parent Opinion Survey is an annual survey offered by the Department of Education and Training that is conducted amongst a sample of randomly selected parents/caregivers/guardians. It is designed to assist schools in gaining an understanding of families’ perceptions of school climate, student behaviour, student engagement and experiences of remote and flexible learning. Our school will use the survey results to help inform and direct future school planning and improvement strategies. Approximately 30 per cent of parents have been invited to participate in this year’s survey. All responses to the survey are anonymous. This year, the Parent/Caregiver/Guardian Opinion Survey will be conducted from Monday 19th July to Sunday 22nd August.
The survey is conducted online and should only take 20 minutes to complete.
I hope you are all okay and managing the constant challenges that seem to be fast becoming part of day-to-day life at the moment.
Early in Term 2 I wrote my annual article on cyber safety, and I feel the need to revisit this, and I shall explain why. Firstly, lockdowns increase our use of social media and digital technology as a way of connecting both socially and professionally/educationally with our friends, family, colleagues and teachers. We know that our children need to maintain their social connections, and this often leads to them being allowed to access platforms that they would normally not be allowed to. There is nothing wrong with this. We are navigating this new path as we go, and it is absolutely important to maintain a sense of social connection. The tricky thing is to make sure that we balance this with making face to face contact when we can via meeting up at playgrounds, for bike rides etc. Now that we are back at school and restrictions are easing, maybe it is also time to consciously reduce the use of social media to maintain contact. This won’t be easy as children will be enjoying being able to access a platform that was previously denied. I would encourage open conversations and be reassured that their anger won’t last once they realise it is actually more fun to interact with their friends face to face.
The other reason for my revisit to this topic is a little more disturbing. As part of our Resilience Project Program, our Grade 3-6 students are asked to participate in the Resilient Youth Survey which asks questions around wellbeing and resilience. This short survey is completely anonymous, students all login via the same school number so their name is never used or recorded. The data from the survey is then reported to us in aggregate descriptive form only, by year level and gender, and no individual student responses can be identified. Elias from The Resilience Project reported back to staff at an online meeting on Monday and ran through the data from our survey results. In the next edition of Focus I will provide more specific information around this data, but the general results were extremely positive. Our kids, on the whole, are happy and resilient and our results were extremely positive when compared to national trends. There was one element that was cause for concern and it centred around the use of digital technology. 19% of girls in Grade 3-6 and 26% of boys in Grade 3-6 at our school, indicated on the survey that they are involved in sending and reading text messages between 10pm and 6am. The management of digital technology and mobile phones at home is absolutely a parent decision. I would just suggest that it would be a good time to have a conversation with your child about their use of these once they are in bed at night and maybe have a look at whether these should be in bedrooms at all. I also suggest that there is no replacement for vigilance and regular checks on social media/phone use. The students do undergo education at school every year around cyber safety and appropriate use of social media, but these are conversations that need to be regularly revisited and reminders given about boundaries and safety.
Social media and Digital Technology can be really difficult to manage as a parent. The eSafety Commissioner has an excellent website that is a useful resource providing advice for parents on how to help children have safe experiences online. https://www.esafety.gov.au/parents
Remote Learning, Return to School, Restrictions, Operations Guidelines
As we have seen throughout 2020 and 2021 the education setting can change very quickly. The first we hear of Remote Learning or Return to School announcements is via the State Government press conferences. The Department of Education then creates School Operational Guidelines that adhere to the public health measures set by the Government. This is never instantaneous and corresponded to us at some time after the State Government announcements.
As a school we then have to ensure that Parkdale Primary observes the Department of Education guidelines. Each school in Victoria has its own context and makes operational changes for its setting. This presently has an impact on many aspects of our school. With the current restriction of visitors onto our site we thank you for the fast turnaround of change regarding student departures in the afternoon. Without your quick response to our request for information we wouldn’t have been able to instil the current drop off and pick up procedures so quickly.
At drop off in the morning, it has been wonderful to see the independence of the children, especially in the younger year levels. Separation can be challenging at times and we will continue to provide a safe and nurturing environment for your children. The self-sufficient skills your children are demonstrating will be an asset in the years ahead.
Over the coming weeks, as restrictions are adjusted from above we will continue to make alterations to our operations at Parkdale. Your children will be taught, guided and cared for in any setting that we are confronted with.
Congratulations to all our Foundation students (and parents!) for reaching the 100th Day of School! We had a wonderful time on Friday celebrating our 100th day with some fantastic costumes and lots of fun activities!
This week we have been reviewing long and short vowels and open and closed syllables. We have also been practising the anti-clockwise letters, it would be wonderful if you could help us practise them at home too!
A reminder that we are collecting shoe boxes, and other clean recycled materials, for a Box Transport activity coming up in Week 6. If you have any lying around at home, we would love to have them!
Due to restrictions, we are not yet able to resume our Parent Helper Program. We hope to begin this again soon, and we will let you know as soon as this is possible.
Colds are starting to pop up in the classrooms. It is really important that children stay home if they have any cold like symptoms. Thankyou!
This week in Grade 1 we have been working on retelling stories and having a go at writing our own narrative based on a sound effects story we listened to. We have continued to review the ‘sounds of y’ in Word Study and also have been identifying interesting vocabulary in books during our morning reading. In Maths, we have finished our topic of Shape and now we are beginning to look at Time.
A big thank you again to parents for your support through another snap lockdown, the children have adjusted back to school well and we are very glad to be back!
Just a reminder that reading should still be occurring every day at home. Children need to be listened to as they read and should be practising their reading aloud. We also want to remind you that Nessy is available to use at home, this is a great way of getting your children to practise spelling rules we have learnt in Word Study.
Can you believe we are almost halfway through this term?! We congratulate our students on easing straight back into school routines. As our term is rocketing along, we are loving the enthusiasm and efforts from our Grade 2’s.
We are enjoying RESPONDING to different texts during writing sessions and this week we have been looking at responding to a short film. We are looking forward to responding to art too! When we respond, we are connecting to our emotions and reactions and are learning to respect that other people might have different opinions to ours.
We’d like to encourage the habit of students reading at home each night, signing the reading log, and bringing their reader bag back to school every day.
In Maths Groups, we are continuing to build on their understanding of MULTIPLICATION and DIVISION. Students are learning to divide a collection of objects into equal groups and beginning to learn about the relationship between multiplication and division
As part of our new Maths Applied topic of TIME, students are learning how to order Months and Seasons of the year and identify the number of days in each month.
As part of our Inquiry into Earth’s Precious Resources we are discovering how the Natural Water Cycle works, including learning about new scientific vocabulary.
Please check Compass for updates and information.
The Grade 3 students have settled back into the school routines and expectations well and the teachers were again very impressed with their efforts during the remote learning period.
Reading: The students have been learning how to draw conclusions and make inferences about a reading passage. Good readers draw conclusions and make inferences by using what they read, along with their own background knowledge, to figure out something that is hinted at but is not directly stated in a reading passage. The students have also had the opportunity to make connections while they read. They have attempted to make text to self, text to text, and text to world connections while reading.
Writing: Last week, we reviewed the different types of poetry that the students have previously studied in the first few weeks of school. They consolidated their understanding of the structure and applied this knowledge to write a variety of rhyming couplets, clerihews, cinquains, and limerick poems. This week, the students are beginning to explore the purpose, structure, and language features of procedural texts. In our grammar sessions, the students are continuing to practise their ability to combine sentences using appositives.
Mathematics: We are beginning a new concept within our number math group. The students will be learning about Australian currency, identifying equivalent coin combinations to equal a given value, calculating change, and budgeting. In our applied math groups, we are continuing to work on reading time. Continue to encourage your child to practise identifying the time on analogue clocks at home as a way to work on reading time.
Inquiry: Within our ‘Forces and Functions’ inquiry unit, we have explored the different types of forces that can be applied to an object. The students are able to identify and name an example of the different types of forces.
Wellbeing: We have been participating in a range of ‘Play is the Way’ games to practise our resilience, teamwork, cooperation, and communication skills within our grades.
It has been great to be back at school and in the classroom after our period of remote learning. The Grade 4's have settled well into their routines and have enjoyed working and interacting with their classmates. Many thanks to the families who have paid the deposit for our camp. We will be confirming numbers this week so please let your child's teacher know if they will not be attending.
Writing: The students are very excited about writing in pen soon. Many students will have their 'L plates' so they will begin to experience writing in pen with some tasks, with the goal of getting their 'probationary pen license' in the not-too-distant future. We have continued with our genre of narrative writing with the specific focus of developing a storyline.
Reading: All Grade 4's have been looking at the comprehension strategy of 'Drawing conclusions and making inferences.' This is often a difficult aspect of reading comprehension as students need to learn how to be a reading detective i.e., look for details in the text that aren't always clearly stated by the author. They have practised inferring by reading a mentor text called, 'The Stone Lion' as well as explicit teaching of this strategy through the use of the CARS & STARS.
Maths: We have continued our number work with fractions across all of our Maths groups in Grade 4. Finding equivalent fractions, simplifying fractions and mixed fractions has been a focus. The Olympic Games have provided a perfect opportunity to look at medal tallies and to use these for bar graphs and pie charts which is part of our Applied Maths.
Inquiry: Students were able to choose a country that was linked to their family background, to research and present information about an Olympic athlete. Ash Barty was a very popular choice for many students!
The 5/6 team would like to congratulate the cohort on a smooth transition back to school after remote learning. On Friday we held our very own Parkdale Olympic Opening Ceremony in the 5/6 Forum. We wish every country competing the best of luck in the games.
This week we are continuing our writing focus on Response Writing. Students will be responding to prompts relating to the stolen generation and focussing on incorporating the 5 senses, the 5 W’s (who, what, when where and why) and figurative language into their writing.
Our number maths topic on ‘Adding and Subtracting Fractions’ is coming to an end next week. Both Grade 5’s and 6’s has begun their applied maths unit of ‘Time’. We will be focussing on reading and converting 12 hour and 24-hour time, elapsed time, timetables and timelines.
We are continuing with our inquiry topic, ‘Australia: Through a Different Lens’ that delves into Australia’s history whilst looking at it through different perspectives. This week we are focusing on creating a timeline of events that reflects events in Australia’s past.
Finally, a big thank you to the parents/carers who have expressed their interest in volunteering for the school camp, expressions of interest close on Friday the 6th of August. A reminder to bring back your camp forms (permission and medical) to your class teacher.
|Foundation||Excellence: For consistently giving her best effort in all areas of the curriculum.||Rosalie H|
|1||Integrity: For being reliable and honest and always trying hard to do the right thing.||Harriet W|
|2||Respect: For always showing Respect to her peers and teachers and for consistently demonstrating all of the Super Six values.||Zevee W|
|3||Excellence: For the positive|
attitude you bring to all class tasks and the desire you have shown to
improve certain skills. Nice work!
|4||Cooperation: For always striving to get the best out of herself and those around her when working with her peers.||Dixie T|
|5||Cooperation: For always working|
cooperatively with his class members and leading by example in group situations.
|6||Excellence: For consistently producing work of an exceptional standard and being a role model to others.||Emma Y|