- Term 2 Review
- Long Service Leave
- LG5 - Rachel Martino
- Online Games
- The Ryder-Cheshire Foundation
We began this work in 2017 starting to unpack our existing reality and what we wanted it to look like in the future, as an overall picture the school was doing well in writing. What we did start seeing however were some gaps forming in students skills. Much like when we unpacked Mathematics, while writing as a whole looked good, there were some students moving through without everything we felt was essential to a skilled writer.
Writing is a highly complex area involving 10 separate scoring criteria with each of these having 2-6 different levels in NAPLAN assessments and over 150 ‘I can’ statements in our prioritised curriculum, and that’s per writing piece… We needed a system that allowed teachers to spend time working with students on the craft of writing, not just doing ‘corrections’ and most importantly, one that empowered our students to take ownership of their learning, to know the next steps needed. This lead to our journey with the Bump It Up Wall (BIUW) which hopefully most parents have now seen or heard about following the student led conversations last week. This has been a massive undertaking by staff reimagining the way we teach and assess writing, providing students with a clear picture of what quality at standard writing looks like and how they can develop their skills to get there and beyond.
Supporting this was significant work in developing our understanding of the use of feedback within the classroom. How we can develop a culture amongst our students of constant feedback and recognition and use this to drive their learning. Again the BIUW allows students to receive regular, targetted feedback from teachers, self and as we expand the work, their peers. The long term goal of this work is to develop in our students the skills necessary to be successful in a rapidly changing world. They don’t need to know everything; they do need to know how to learn and responding to feedback is critical in this.
Another introduction this term was the student led conversations (P/T interviews) prior to reports going home. The feedback from these has been incredible from parents and at this stage we hope to make this a regular feature of our reporting process. Our written reports have also seen a change this term with a reduction in the comments to focus more on learning behaviours and work habits rather than a list of learning statements. Alongside this the introduction of SeeSaw next semester is aimed to provide parents and carers with a better picture of what is actually happening for your child in regular, ongoing updates to their learning rather than waiting for the end of semester or year. We will be sending out some parent information regarding SeeSaw and how it can be used to support your child/ren’s learning early next term.
On top of that we’ve managed to sneak in a few assemblies, a camp, some visiting priests (with dancing), two closure days looking at open learning spaces and contemporary education along with continuing to move ahead with our Annual Action Plan goals and staff Professional Learning Plans, we may have even survived another round of NAPLAN (possibly the last, definitely the last paper one).
Thank you as always to the incredible parents who make this school the wonderful place it is, without your support and trust none of this is possible. I wish everyone a safe and peaceful break and look forward to seeing you all back for the start of Semester Two.
Long Service Leave
Mr Shane Bruty is taking three weeks Long Service Leave at the start of next term. Geoffrey Short one of our regular CRT’s will be replacing him in LG3 during this time. We wish Shane a safe and happy break with his family and look forward to his return in week 4.
As many of you would now know Rachel Martino (LG5) is leaving us at the end of this term. Rachel began her time at St Columba’s as a preservice teacher (student teacher) and was later employed as one of our Grade 5/6 teachers. Rachel has taught for a number of years in the 5/6 community before moving to 3/4 community this year. During her time with us Rachel has shown herself to be a dedicated educator with a high level of care and compassion for student wellbeing and social needs. We wish Rachel every success in whatever the future may hold for her and her family. Interviews will take place over the holidays and families of students within the community will be notified via email once a successful applicant has been appointed.
We’re having to deal with a number of students at the moment watching videos or clips related to some inappropriate online games. The biggest culprit for this currently is Fortnite which is rated PEGI 12 with frequent scenes of mild violence. What we wish to avoid is having to lock our filters down so tightly that we miss out on learning opportunities but this may be an end product of this habit. We would ask that parents have a conversation with their children about appropriate use to assist us in our continuing Cyber Awareness work.
The Ryder-Cheshire Foundation
We have received the following note of appreciation from the Ryder-Cheshire Foundation following our fund-raising support of Mrs Butler.
“Thank you so much for your generous donation. It will be split between Raphael and Klibur Domin and will assist greatly in supporting the patients and residents at the two homes.”
We look forward to hearing some more of her activities next term as Mrs Butler’s work moves to East Timor.
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