Sunday, May 1, 2011

Term 2 Newsletter

Dear Parents and Caregivers
Welcome back to the new term. Hopefully everyone had a relaxing Easter break and managed to eat their fair share of chocolate eggs!
A special thanks to all the parents who contributed to making our annual trip to Forest Lakes a real success. The children had a sensational time and it was an excellent opportunity to establish strong class and team cultures at the beginning of the year.
The teachers are all looking forward to getting stuck into a solid term of teaching in Term 2. Here is the run down of what is happening.


This term we have a science focus where we will be focusing on the our solar system. We will be learning about the sun, moon and planets and exploring what makes Earth so unique to support life.
On Monday the 9th of May all classes will be visiting Carter Observatory where we will learning about our solar system plus visit their planetarium. We will require parent help for this trip so if you are able to attend please contact your child's classroom teacher.


In writing we will be focusing on non-chronological report writing where we will be writing factual accounts to share information. This will be integrated with our Inquiry unit as much as possible, using our findings from scientific investigations.

Towards the middle of the term we will start preparing for speech presentations which will take place in classes at the end of the term. The best speeches from each class will be selected for the Team semi-finals. From there, the finalists will be chosen for the Finals on the 5th of July.
The majority of the speech preparation will occur through the homework programme although support will also be given in class.

Cross grouping will continue this term and commence in week 1. We start the term looking at Number, exploring addition, subtraction, multiplication & division. We then move into Geometry, drawing and constructing 3d shapes.

Visual Art

Students will be learning about various concepts of painting and will be building on their drawing skills using a variety of materials. The students will also be studying styles or famous and local artists.

Physical Education

The start of the term sees us training for the school cross country in week 6. Training will take place every morning so it is essential the children have appropriate running shoes and clothes to wear.

We will also be focusing on developing throwing and catching skills of large balls along with improving team game strategies.

Homework will be completed on a weekly basis during term 2. Homework will be given out on Monday and will be due on the following Friday.
We will continue to blog homework tasks. Homework sheets will still be provided to students who have no or limited internet access at home. This is what you should expect to see in your child’s weekly homework:

Spelling: Each week your child will have between 8-10 spelling words to learn for the week. These words will be a combination of words taken from the Essential Spelling Lists (including extension lists if appropriate) and inquiry/literacy based words. There will usually be a spelling activity based on these words eg writing words in complex sentences, writing in alphabetical order, breaking words into syllables etc. Every Friday your child will be tested on their words either by the classroom teacher or a buddy.

Reading: Your child will also be required to read between 10-15 minutes every night and record what they read in their homework books. They will also be asked to write a brief summary (1-2 paragraphs) on what has happened in the story.

Maths: This will usually consist of maintenance on basic facts, especially timetables plus revising concepts of place value. It is essential that your child has a strong grounding of these facts and they need to have instant recall so regular practice is essential. Tasks will often involve playing or completing maths tasks that are linked from the classroom blogs.

Additional tasks: Most weeks students will be given an additional task to complete. This may be completing a task that was started in class or a reflection task based on a learning experience from the previous week.

As mentioned earlier, towards the middle of the term there will be a strong focus on preparing for speech delivery in class.

As the term goes on, we will add links on classroom blogs for students who wish to do optional extension tasks.
When your child is completing their work at home please encourage them to present their work to a high standard so it is easy to follow and mark by their classroom teacher.

As teachers, we understand the weeks can be very busy and many children have a lot of after school activities to attend. If for any reason your child is unable to complete their homework, please write a brief note in their book or email your classroom teacher with an explanation.

T.G.I Friday Programme

Starting Friday Week 2 the classes from the Year 5/6 Syndicate will be mixed up to take part in a variety of high interest activities. The programme includes, Technology, Art, Music and Drama. The programme will be structured into four 2 week cycles so all children will have an opportunity to most of the activities on offer.

This programme is a great opportunity for the students to take part in fun, practical learning experiences with the possibility of showcasing their work at the end of the term.

If there are any parents who are keen to help out with this programme, please contact your child's classroom teacher - we would love to hear from you!

Other things to note….

Slippers: In Term 2 we ask the children to bring a pair of slippers to wear in the classroom instead of their regular footwear. This eliminates the mud that is brought into the class from children playing on the field. Please ensure your child has a pair of slippers that are left at school for the next two terms.

Blogs: All classroom blogs are now up and running with some classes also operating literacy blogs to showcase the students writing. Thank you to everyone who has visited the blogs and have left comments for the children – they really appreciate your feedback. We will endeavour to keep the blogs updated regularly so make sure you visit frequently!
Click on the links in the sidebar to go to the classroom blogs.

Reports, Interviews & Portfolios:

In Week 11 of this term there will be an opportunity for you to make an appointment with your classroom teacher to discuss your child’s progress along with viewing their portfolio of work. Reports outlining your child's achievements will also be sent home at the end of this term.

Finally…. Please help your child remember to check they have everything they need each morning and they are at school in time for the first bell at 8.40. Students should see that being organised is part of growing up and an important life skill to be developing.

If you need to contact your child’s classroom teacher please feel free to drop by the classroom before or after school or make an appointment for an interview at the office. The easiest way to touch base with us is email e.g. teacher’s

Thank you again for your support

Stu Devenport

Year 5 and 6 Team Leader.

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