From The Principal 17 August 2018

Kia ora koutou katoa, Talofa Lava, Malo e lelei, Ni Hao, Anyoung haseyo, Magandang umaga, Konnichi wa, Guten tag, Bonjour, Ola, hello to our whole school community.  A special welcome to Jessica Radley and Isabelle Reeve who started in our new entrant class.

I can’t believe how fast this term is flying by already and when each fortnight comes around for me to write my piece I feel like I’ve only just finished the last one!

As I walk around the school and visit the classrooms it is so great to see the children so enthusiastic about practising their poems and speeches in preparation for presenting to their peers.  I’ve seen many of our Tika students showing innovation and  creativity with their costumes to support their poem.  We are all looking forward to the finals in Week 6.  

PTA

On Tuesday night I attended the PTA Annual General Meeting.  On behalf of the staff, students and the wider community I would like to thank the PTA for the awesome amount of effort they put in to supporting our school.  Listening to the annual reports from the Chairperson Ana MacFarlane and the Treasurer, Tracey Phizacklea it is quite impressive to hear just what has been accomplished over the last year.  The PTA is incremental in providing support physically for events e.g. Discos, Quiz Night, Adventure Day.  They also provide monetary support for those extra projects that may not be afforded otherwise, the Junior Sandpit is a great example.  Thank you to the PTA, we could not survive without your huge input.  

Industrial Action

Thank you to all of our parents for being so supportive and understanding when the teachers went on strike this Wednesday.  

We are hoping that our action sent a strong message to our government that we believe they are not valuing our profession or the importance of teachers.  The current offer on the table is not addressing the key issues of the teacher shortage, challenges teachers have in the classroom with workload, and the lack of funding for children with special needs. This is not just a claim for extra pay as has been reported in the media; it is a campaign for the changes we see as essential to providing the best education possible for your children.

Key Competencies

At St Mary’s we understand the importance of the Key Competencies.  Over the next term, through the newsletter, I will be looking more in depth at each key competency. So far I have covered Managing Self and Relating to Others.  This week I am focusing on ‘Participating and Contributing’. 

We want our children to be active participants.  This includes being involved in local communities like family, whanau, school, our Catholic Parish, sports groups and cultural groups.  This can spread much wider to being involved in national and global initiatives.  “This competency includes a capacity to contribute appropriately as a group member, to make connections with others, and to create opportunities for others in the group.  Students who participate and contribute in communities have a sense of belonging and the confidence to participate within new contexts. They understand the importance of balancing rights, roles, and responsibilities and of contributing to the quality and sustainability of social, cultural, physical, and economic environments.” TKI Online

As teachers and parents we need to provide purposeful learning experiences that give our students opportunities for this involvement.  We need to give them experiences that develop their knowledge of what is possible and what it means to be a productive member of a community or group.

Have a great couple of weeks, no doubt Week 6 will be here before we know it!

Reminder about Absence and Lateness 

It is a concern for us that several students have high absences from school and many students arrive late to school on a regular basis.  Children who are not at school or are regularly late do not learn as easily or with the same rate of progress as other children. Staff, parents, children and the community have responsibilities in this area.  Ayn Harris and I will be contacting parents early next term if we are concerned about your child’s absence or lateness.  

Children are considered to have unsatisfactory attendance at school over the course of the year if they miss 16 days of school or 8% of their time at school. This means that if a child has had 4 days off school in a term the school is concerned.  

It is interesting and alarming to note that 10% of a child’s time at our school (Year 1 – Year 6) is 32 weeks (3 terms), and 20% is 64 weeks (6 terms).  

“If students experienced more than a day between one opportunity to interact with a new idea and a subsequent opportunity to interact with the new idea, then forgetting occurred and instructional opportunity was wasted” 

(Alton-Lee, 2003, p.50). 

Fa’amanuia le Atua (God bless)

Anna MacKinnon

Acting Principal

Special Character 17 August 2018

Welcome Father Rico

We would like to welcome Father Rico to our school community. He was officially welcomed at our New Families liturgy. We look forward to getting to know Father Rico. 

Service

Well done to the Young Vinnies who carry out Service. They have been visiting local Rest Homes, playing games, doing yoga, performing magic tricks and performing musical and dance items. 

Monday 6th August -  Hodgson House Rest Home. Monday 13th August - Cedar Manor Retirement and Care.

They plan to visit - Fraser Manor Retirement Home and another Home this term. 

Sacrament of Baptism

If anyone would like to find out more about having their children Baptised please contact Margie at the Church office 578 6209. Or you can email Teresa Rush This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. for further information.

Senior Jesus Strand key teaching and learning

Catholics believe that Jesus Christ is both fully human he tino tangata and divine he tino Atua like God. People come to know Jesus through reading and reflecting on the stories about him in the New Testament. Through the stories people can get a sense of the people, the times and places Jesus lived in that influenced his life and his work. 

Each gospel writer records Jesus’ life from a different perspective and this enables people to develop a deeper understanding of Jesus’ life, his mission and his death and resurrection. Jesus came to make known to people that God is his Abba, Matua. Jesus’ life was God’s gift of love to the world because God loved people so much. Jesus taught that the Holy Spirit strengthens people to turn away from sin and live as he lived. Jesus lived with faith, hope and love and he invites his followers to do the same. Christians express their faith, hope and love through worshipping God and loving actions.

Teresa Rush

DRS

From The Principal 2 August 2018

Tena koutou katoa, kia orana kotou and a very warm welcome back to Term 3.

Grandparents and Grandfriends

We were blessed with a huge turnout for our special celebration liturgy of our grandparents and grandfriends this week.   

It’s our hope that all of our grandparents feel that they are a part of St Mary’s and as I moved around the school on Tuesday morning, the unconditional love that they were sharing with their own grandchildren was evident. 

Education is changing rapidly but something that hasn’t changed, and in fact has become even more important, is the ability to build relationships with and relate to people of all ages.  Relationships is an area that we spend a considerable amount of time on at St Mary’s.  

Grandparents are often the ones who reinforce the values that we are instilling in our students.  The St Mary’s values of Truth (tika), wisdom (maramatanga), Faith (whakapono) and Mercy (aroha).  They are often also the ones that bring our Catholic faith alive.  We never underestimate how important grandparents are for us as a community and to develop that special relationship with their grandchildren.  

Welcome

A special welcome to Ella Saunders, Vincent Hodgson, Shania Addlington, Francis Morado, Jodi Gilmour, Jules Youn, Sally Ryu and Wonjun Jung who have joined our school family.

Term Three Learning

The term ahead sees the teachers and students inquiring into our brain.  In particular thinking about thinking (metacognition) and having a growth mindset.

Term 3 has historically been our term for the performance of speeches and poetry.  Our finals will be held in Week 6.   

Key Competencies

At St Mary’s we understand the importance of the Key Competencies.  Over the next term, through the newsletter, I will be looking more in depth at each key competency.  Last term I wrote about Managing Self.  This week I am focusing on ‘Relating To Others’.  This is at the forefront of my mind after the Grandparents Liturgy on Tuesday.  

Relating to others is about interacting effectively with a diverse range of people in a variety of contexts. This includes listening, recognising different points of view or being able to ‘walk in another’s shoes’, negotiating, and sharing ideas. Knowing when, and being able to ask for and offer help, is also an important aspect of this key competency.  

Students who relate well to others are open to new learning and can take on different roles in different situations. They are aware of how their words and actions affect others. They can work together with others, collaborate and cooperate.  

Reporting

August is the final month for first reports to go out to parents and whanau.  If you missed an interview it’s not too late to book one in with your child’s whanau teacher.  

Staff 

Congratulations to Angela Cochrane who has been appointed to Team Leader for Aroha Team until the end of the year.  

We are very sad to farewell Bryan Crowe from his permanent teaching position and Siyeon Crowe from her ESOL / International teaching position.  Siyeon left at the end of last term and Bryan will be leaving at the end of Term 3.  Bryan and Siyeon are heading back to Korea to teach.  We thank them for all their hard work and wish them all the best.  There will be a more formal farewell for Bryan at the end of the term.  

We welcome Donna Vincent as teacher of our ESOL and International students.  Donna will be working closely with teachers, students and their families to provide an effective English Language Programme to our English as Second Language and our International Students. Donna will work both within the classroom and in small groups to provide this instruction.  

Nuts and Bolts

Lost property: The lost Property bin is getting so full that we can hardly close it each night.  One fine day over the next week, we will be laying out the lost property on the tennis courts.  All un-named remaining clothing will then be washed and kept in the office for spare , to give to families in need, or to resell.  We will alert you by Facebook, app and email so that you have a chance to come in and pick up what belongs to you.  We will also be encouraging the children to have a thorough look.  

After School: We will be encouraging all children to wait inside the gate for parents at the end of the day, in order to keep them safe.

Lunches: Please ensure lunches are healthy options for your children and packaging is kept to a minimum so that we are doing our bit for the environment.  

Health and Safety: We are currently going through the process of practicing our evacuation procedures.  These include lockdown (reverse evacuation), fire, earthquake and tsunami.  If any parents are on site during these drills, it is important that you follow our procedures also.

Fa’amanuia le Atua (God bless)

Anna MacKinnon

Acting Principal

PTA Defibrillator

CONGRATULATIONS to all our students who got in behind the school cross country fundraiser; 

you raised just over $2,000 for the PTA’s defibrillator. 

It is times like this that I am reminded what a fantastic school community we have.  Thank you very much to all of you.      

Steven Finlayson

Special Character 2 August 2018

Please pray for Ben Fuller and his whanau

Ben’s mother, Freda passed away unexpectedly last weekend.  Please pray for Ben, Gen and family during this very sad and difficult time. 

Hehu Karaiti-Jesus -  Term 3 Religious Education

This term our teaching focus is on Jesus- Hehu Karaiti and our school value Truth- Tika

Students will be reflecting on the main question: 

How can I be an excellent follower of Jesus?

The focus for each area of the school is:

Tika and Maramatanga:  Jesus my friend, Jesus showed his love in different ways.

Whakapono: Jesus gives himself in the Eucharist; Jesus came to show people how to live and lead them to God.

Aroha:  The Life of Jesus; Jesus - the fullness of God’s revelation.

Service

This week I would like to highlight the great service provided by the students who run the “Fun Factory” This club is open on Tuesday and Thursday lunchtime by room 10.

Milli Banbury, Lottie Mann, Willow Murie, Fenella Price, India Scholes, Niamh O’Connor and Cleo Sands from Whakapono.

“The Fun Factory is where kids who don’t have anyone to play with can come to play games, do art, read books. When they are here we talk to them and see how they are going.” -  Milli Banbury.

“We started it because when I was walking around the school one day we noticed people without friends sitting around trees doing nothing.”  - Willow Murie

“We thought that we should do something to help people make friends.”  - Lottie Mann

Farewell Father Danny

Students, Staff and community farewelled Father Danny last week with a Liturgy. We gave God thanks for Father Danny and all he has done for us. We wish him well in his new appointment as Parish Priest in Melville and Hospital Chaplin. 

Father Danny has done many things for our school. You have taught many students the wonders of God and I have learnt an amount from you too. If you hadn’t have come to St Mary’s, I don’t think I would know much about R.E as I do now. You’ve made a huge contribution to our school in the time you’ve been here. We will all miss you and we wish you the very best in continuing your journey as a priest. 

(Samuel - Aroha)

Dear Fr Danny I’m so sad that today I am writing to say goodbye to you. so, I have decided more to focus on the positive memories you have made at St Marys. 

You are a truly amazing person and you inspire me to love God with all my heart and to continue to do so all my life.

Your beautiful kind spirit has touched the hearts of not just the children but the school staff and the teachers too. 

(Sophia - Aroha)

Thank you Father Danny for your committement and service to St Mary’s School.  We will miss you! 

School Feast Day

Thank you for all your support on the School feast day. All the students had a great day. It was fantastic to see the students interacting with learning in their house groups and the way the seniors helped the junior students. The learning based on Blessed Anne Marie Javouhey was excellent and many students really amazed us with their knowledge and thoughts about how we serve God today.

Teresa Rush

DRS

Sports News 2 August 2018

Sports Exchange

After last year’s successful term 3 sports exchange with St Thomas More, we have decided to expand this year’s event.  We are really happy to announce that St Mary’s Rotorua will be joining St Mary’s Tauranga and St Thomas More on the last week of term 3 to compete in Netball, Basketball and Football.  This sports exchange will be open to all our Year 5 and 6 students.   As soon as all the information is finalised we will send more information.

National Taekwondo Champhionships 

Jazmine Oficial competed in the 9 – 12 year old age group at the National Taekwondo Champhionships finishing an amazing 1st in Sparing, 1st Pair Poomsae (forms or defined pattern of attack and defensive movements), 1st Individual Poomsae.  With two more years in this category, I am sure she will continue to have great success. 

Miniball World Cup

In the last week of term 2 a St Mary’s team of Areta Kahura, Louie Gash, Kees Schiphorst, Makae Fuller, Alexander Bayliss, Loimata Paaka, Joshua Fausett, Cormac Gardiner, Kahlia Gardiner-Hano and George Hopkins competed as Russia in the Miniball World Cup.  Out of the 32 teams who competed at the tournament, our St Mary’s team WON THE COMPETITION!!!!! 

To top off what was a fantastic day, they also finished 2nd in the best dressed competition.  On behalf of everybody involved I would like to say a huge thank you to Wayne Fausett, who coached the team for a very full on and long day.

I would also like to congratulate Areta Kahura, who was named in the tournament team from the Miniball World Cup.  This team does not play any games, but is made up of the best players  from every team who competed.

Soccer Success

During the July school holidays, Benjamin Petrik competed in the Christchurch International Cup.  There are over 1,000 players at this football tournament,  for teams from the Asia-Pacific region.  Congratulations to Ben and his team who finished 4th against some very high quality teams.  Ben has also been chosen, as part of the Tauranga All Stars Football Academy to travel to Scotland and England in December this year to play against four academies there (Rangers FC, Kilmarnock FC, Manchester City FC and Burnley FC). 

St Mary’s Speech and Drama Term 2 News!

Hello St Mary’s Catholic School families! We are now into the second half of the year – dramatically scary to say the least! However, us drama and communications enthusiasts have not let the year get away on us, thus we have thrown ourselves into comps, exam prep and performance pieces across the speech and drama and communication skills syllabuses. 

We’ve been busy!

As we nearer mid-July, we have several speech and drama students – Sophia Mason, Gia Dumbleton, Ivy Barrett-Hodgson, Imogen and Saoirse Williamson, Chloe Evans, Eve Jeffries, Amelia Muller, Abby Moore and Lila Drummond – all gearing up for the Tauranga Performing Arts Competitions, Speech and Drama Section, to be held in at Baycourt from 12th – 14th July - best of luck all!

Heading into August from 21st – 23rd, we also have several students sitting Trinity College London Speech and Drama, Acting in Pairs, Group Scripted and Communication Skills exams. 

It will be all systems go closer to comps – and much holiday practise for exams no doubt – so we wish them a rewarding journey and experience ahead and look forward to hearing all about!

Term’s 3 and 4 will also see all St Mary’s speech and drama students preparing play scripts for an end-of-year Xmas concert to be performed for fellow students, teachers and parents – stay tuned for the date!

Wishing all families a safe and enjoyable mid-year break ahead! All speech and drama queries should be directed to Dee Ellwood: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., 021 581917.

Dee Ellwood and the St Mary’s Catholic School Speech and Drama Students

Sports News 7 July 2018

What a fantastic finish to term two we have had.

Basketball World Cup

At the recent Year 5/6 Basketball World Cup, our St Mary’s team of Caden Lowe, Jayden Hyland, Kiwa Kahura, Finn Curragh, Oliver Grosso, Pateriki Paaka, Emma Rogers and Holly Fausett competed as Puerto Rico.  Not only did they have a fantastic time, the team came runner up in the best dressed competition and finish 5th out of the 32 teams who competed.  On behalf of everybody involved I would like to say a huge thank you to Lisa Hyland, who coached the team for a very full on and long day.

South Cluster Cross Country Championships

St Mary’s competed as part of the South Cluster Cross Country Championship team, where the top 15 finishers in each age group qualified for Western Bay of Plenty Cross Country Championships.  It was an outstanding day, run in perfect cross country conditions and St Mary’s results were a great reflection of the day.  Our results were Year 6 Girls: Holly Fausett 1st, Emma Rogers 3rd.  Year 6 Boys we had a clean sweep of: Reef Joseph 1st, Jacob Kleinsmith 2nd, Aidan Dobbs 3rd and Caden Lowe 5th. Year 5 Girls: Summer-Ann Joseph 1st, Eva Jeffries 3rd, Imogen Williamson 5th, Sophia Mason 6th.  Year 4 Girls: Areta Kahura 1st, India-Rose Scholes 4th, Cleo Sands 6th and Naimh O’Connor 7th. Year 4 Boys: Sidney Orchard finished 6th.

Western Bay of Plenty Cross Country Championships 

From there our students competed in the Western Bay of Plenty Cross Country Championships to qualify for the BoP Cross Country Championships, where 420 students from 92 different schools competed.  The BoP Cross Country Championships is the pinnacle cross country event for our school and all of our students ran with courage, conviction and determination.  Congratulations to the following students who ran very well to achieve their great results.  

Eva Jeffries 23rd 9 Year Old Girls.  Holly Fausett 1st and Emma Rogers 5th 10 Year Old Girls.  Reef Joseph 5th and Jacob Kleinsmith 9th 10 Year Old Boys. A special mention for our new Bay of Plenty Champion.  Congratulations Holly Faucett.  The best in the Bay!

Argos Gymsport Competition 

A team of 13 Gymnasts represented St Mary’s School and competed in the annual inter-school Gymsports festival.  After many many hours of training and learning routines for beam, floor, vault and trampoline we came away with many medals, certificates and super happy girls. The routines were flawless on the day and their attitudes were outstanding.  Well done girls all your hard work paid off. Our team was lead by the amazing Megan Wills had some incredible results.  

These results are not only a reflection of the passion of Megan, but also of our enthusiastic gymnastics students.

Addison Sands-6th overall and 1st team overall

Cleo Sands-5th overall and 1st team overall

Liae Yang -1st floor, 1st vault, 2nd beam, 2nd overall, 1st team overall

Grace Gundry placed 13th floor, 5th vault, 23rd beam

Summer Joseph 23rd floor, 8th vault, 9th beam

Alana Perrett 16th floor, 7th vault, beam 4th

Eva Jefferies 1st floor, 1st vault, 4th beam, 1st overall and 1st team overall

Briar Grace 1st vault, 4th beam, 2nd floor, 1st team overall

Isla Martin 5th floor, 2nd vault, 30th Beam, 1st team overall

Greer Wakelin 3rd floor, 10th beam, 6th beam, 1st team overall

Milla Mason 16th floor, 10th vault, 9th beam, 1st team overall

Isla Wills 1st trampoline, 6th floor, vault 2nd, beam 6th, 6th overall

Olivia Williamson 1st floor, 1st vault, 3rd beam, 1st overall

For the first time in quite a while we had two Rythmic Gymnasts compete at the same competition.  Congratulations to Sophie Van Den Borst who finished 4th in the Club Level year 3/4 competition and Imogen Williamson who finished 2nd in the Club Level year 5/6 competition.

North Island Synchronised Swimming Championships

Yeva Parshikova competed in the North Island Synchronised Swimming Championships that were held in Wellington on 18-20 May. The competition attracted over 80 athletes from the North Island.  Yeva achieved the following fantastic results:

12 & under Figures       3rd      (in a large field, and in her first year competing in this category)  

12 & under Team          2nd       

Board News 7 July 2018

Term 2 seems to have flown by and here we are at the end of it already.  I’m sure you’re all ready for a chance to wind down for the next 2 weeks and recoup somewhere out of this chilly weather.

As our DRS mentioned in the last Newsletter, a number of teachers and Board members were fortunate to attend the NZ Catholic Education Convention in Wellington in early June.  This is an event that comes around every 3 years and is an excellent forum for those involved in Catholic Schools to reconnect with their core purpose, get updated on new teaching methods and principles based on our Catholic premise, upcoming RE curriculum changes, and review processes, and listen to teachings from some very wise and faithful educators.

The theme of the Convention was ‘Christ’s Call: To Love, To Be, To Do’, and a common thread throughout the key speakers related to ‘Accompaniment’. That we are not alone on our journey, but must be open to receiving that help and enlightenment with those that accompany us.  A very uplifting message.

One key speaker, David Wells, I found particularly inspirational.  Check out some of his talks on YouTube if you have time: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J8VYCdYPOgM

On that note, have a fabulous holiday break all, and take care

God Bless

Claire Stott, BOT Chair