Week 5, Term 2 2021 - 18th May 2021
The Teacher Matters
As many of you are aware, in 2021 St Mary’s has embarked on a journey of Mathematics intervention called RTI.
RTI (or Response to Intervention) is a multi-tier approach to classroom learning, enabling teachers to identify the abilities of individual learners and provide additional instruction to learners who may benefit from support in smaller, more targeted settings. Student achievement is closely monitored to help both teachers and students understand how their development is progressing, and to celebrate success in their learning. Teachers can use this data to make decisions about student's instructional needs and whether they may need to move between intervention tiers.
To find out more about RTI check out the video below.
We have seen some positive student achievement with RTI and look forward to further success as we refine the process.
For me, one of the great joys of RTI is that I get to work with Year 2, teaching these students essential maths concepts in small, tailored groups. I must say that is always a highlight of my week to plan for and teach this group of students. For my students, I really want to be the best teacher I can be.
Reflecting on this, it got me thinking about the truly inspirational teachers that I have known and worked with. One teacher that may be well known to you is Mr Eddie Woo. Eddie (pictured) is a high-school maths teacher and online YouTube sensation.
Eddie was born into a South-East Asian migrant family, was educated in Australia, achieved top marks at high school and could have gone on to do anything career-wise. His parents expected him to study medicine or law, but much to their surprise, Eddie chose teaching. Eddie’s YouTube channel ‘WooTube’ has racked up millions of views, and showcases Eddie doing what he does best, teaching kids maths. In 2017, Eddie was one of twelve Australian teachers honoured at the Commonwealth Bank Teaching Awards.
Watching Eddie teach on his YouTube channel, it is obvious to see that he brings an infectious enthusiasm for Mathematics to his students. A great teacher has the ability to make the complex understandable, and it is obvious that he possesses this skill. Teaching for Eddie is all about relationships, which he describes it as ‘the medium for learning’. He also defines teaching as a compassionate vocation, a service to the school community.
Eddie is a teacher that any parent would love to teach their children.
At St Mary’s, we are also very blessed to have many excellent teachers. I have been genuinely ‘blown away’ at their ability, commitment and experience that they bring to their teaching vocation, all the while building a relationship that enables true growth for all students. I know for them, bringing a joyful enthusiasm to their role, making the complex understandable and really knowing and valuing their students is of utmost importance to them.
There is no greater impact on a student’s learning than their teacher. Having excellent teachers in all classrooms is critical to positively impacting student learning and is a continual focus at St Mary’s school. As Principal, fellow teacher and parent, I am glad to say that this is a key improvement area at the forefront of our teacher’s ongoing professional development and something that our students are benefiting from. On behalf of the school community, I sincerely thank our teachers for the important work that they do. In ways, some small and some big, it is life-changing to each and every student. Thank you teachers!
All the very best,
From the Principal
Prep Enrolment Interviews
Over the next three weeks, we will continue interviews for Prep 2022. I thank the many existing families who have completed their prep applications for next year. A reminder that if you are yet to complete your Prep 2022 child’s online application, please do so asap, as it is past due. Please see the school office for assistance if needed.
Sharon Smith - Resignation
It is with sadness that I advise that our beloved tuckshop convenor, Sharon Smith, has tended her resignation. Over the past 6 years, Sharon has done an amazing job in our tuckshop, feeding countless children and staff in her time. Sharon’s last day will be Friday 28th May. On behalf of the staff, I sincerely thank Sharon for her expertise and dedication and wish her all the best for the future. We now commence the search for a new tuckshop convenor for St Mary’s. If you know of anyone that may be interested, please have them contact the school office.
Mr Rose Away
This Wednesday and Thursday, I will be in Brisbane, attending my graduation ceremony following completion of my recent degree, Masters of Educational Leadership. In my absence, Mrs Leotta is acting principal.
This Thursday and Friday, Belinda Battaia (Assistant Principal: Curriculum) and Val Paul (Literacy Coach) will attend a spelling a literacy PD in Brisbane.
Please note that Mrs Leotta (Assistant Principal: Religious Education) will be attending the APRE gathering in Rockhampton next Monday - Thursday.
Quote of the Week
Big improvement! While we went down to St Francis we walked out feeling much better about this week’s game. Harper Shields was everywhere, that boy can move! Zane Galea keeps impressing us with his confidence and dazzle and our hitman Charlie Galea lead the way. Converts Matthew Davies and Sonny Richardson continue to make an impact with Harry Roberts popping up in nearly every tackle. Kai Crisp was landing the perfect passes and Reuben Beardmore increased his tackle count this week, nice work Reuben!
Looking forward to watching our super team continue to develop.
Mrs Caroline Kerrisk
From our APC - Mrs Belinda Battaia
How can I help my child with mathematics?
Below is an excerpt from an article written by Doug Clarke, an Emeritus Professor at Australian Catholic University (Melbourne). The excerpt outlines ten practical ideas to help your children with mathematics.
- (For younger children) Count steps when you go up or down them. Ask your child to set the table, working out how many knives, forks, cups, chopsticks, etc are needed. Talk about longer and shorter, lighter and heavier. Identify shapes in the environment.
- When you have a calculation to do, ask your child, "How would you work this out?" (67 per cent of all calculations adults do are in the home, so there are many opportunities for this.)
- Talk to children about today's date, find upcoming birthdays on the calendar, and ask them questions about how long till bedtime and how long until their birthday, and encourage them to read both analogue and digital clocks.
- In the supermarket: when in line at the deli, ask how many more people until it's your turn. Ask them to collect the 2L milk carton or the 1kg bag of rice. Encourage them to work out which has the better value out of the large and small packets of laundry detergent.
- Use a height measurer marked in centimetres for children to keep track of their height, and encourage them to measure things at home, like spacing seedlings when planting in the garden and weighing ingredients during cooking.
- When travelling, encourage children to be in charge of maps; calculate times and distances; and use the language of north and south-west. When out walking, notice the patterns of house numbers and predict the next house number.
- Use jigsaw puzzles, card games, monopoly, spatial puzzles and so on. These all help to develop mathematical capability.
- It is helpful for children to get practice at remembering numbers and other information. Encourage them to learn their address, the phone numbers of their parents, your car registration numbers, birth dates of all the family and so on.
- Give children a pile of loose change and encourage them to count the total, discussing the different ways of doing this, and ask "How much more to make $10?"
- At big sporting events, ask children to estimate the crowd. When travelling, estimate how much petrol will cost when filling up, or how long to get to a destination.
The link below is an excellent parent guide of activities specific to different aspects of the mathematics curriculum.
Go down deep enough into anything and you will find mathematics - Dean Schlicler
Thank you to the keen students who attended our first Stem Club yesterday afternoon. Our first challenge involved building a structure that could hold the most weight. Students utilised the engineering design process steps of imagining, planning, creating and testing to successfully complete the challenge.
Next week we discuss possible improvements to our structure and test ourselves with another new and exciting challenge.
Thank you to Mrs Paul and Ms Banks who also assisted yesterday. I invite any students who may not have attended yesterday to join us at Stem Club by collecting a note from the school office.
National Simultaneous Storytime
National Simultaneous Storytime is held annually by the Australian Library and Information Association. Every year a picture book, written and illustrated by an Australian author and illustrator, is read simultaneously around the country. This Wednesday at 12pm, our students will stop to hear the reading of this year’s title “Give me some space!”
The event is a highlight in our school calendar as we all stop, from prep to year 6, to hear the expressive reading of the story by our very own Ms Lenz.
Prep Vision Screening
Visit by Registered Nurse for Free Prep Vision Screening
Good vision is important for a child’s educational, physical and social development. Vision screening checks for common eye conditions that may impact your child’s ability to see and therefore impact their learning and development.
A Registered Nurse will be visiting the school on Wednesday 15th September to conduct vision screening for children in their prep year. Your child does not need a Medicare card in order to participate in screening. If you wish to have your prep child participate in this free vision screening program, please complete a consent form by Wednesday 9th June. Online consent forms were emailed to all prep parents last week or you can complete the form here. Parents do not need to be present for screening, however if you would like to be, please contact the school to arrange this.
If your child’s vision is screened, you will be advised of the results in writing. If a vision concern is found, you will receive a phone call from the nurse to discuss referral to an eye health professional for further assessment. If a vision concern is identified and your child requires glasses, eligible health care card holders may be assisted with free basic glasses through the Spectacle Supply Scheme.
Participation in vision screening is not compulsory. If you do not wish for your child to participate in screening, please complete the consent form and indicate that you wish to decline screening.
If you have any questions, please contact the Primary School Nurse Health Readiness Program on 1800 687 372.
Year 6 Caritas Stalls
Next Monday and Tuesday the Year 6 students will be running their Caritas stalls to raise money for this very important charity.
The stalls will be active during both breaks and will have a variety of wares available for purchase. They will have home baked goodies, raffles, sponge throws, bookmarks, jewellery, hair bands, home-made lemonade, icy cups and much, much more.
Please send along some spending money and support this initiative of the hard-working year 6 students.
Mrs Jenni Motteram, Mrs Belinda Battaia and Mrs Belinda van Lint
Year 6 Teachers
St Mary's Trivia Night - 11th June 2021
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0401 928 281
Student of the Week
WEEK 4 TERM 2 STUDENT AWARD WINNERS
Harry for your enthusiasm and skillful creation for the Lego Masters Challenge. You are the future ‘Brick Man’!
Andre for the fantastic attempt you made at writing your list words. Well done!
Olivia for being very eager to complete your work with so much care. Thank you for working so hard.
Kheiruz for the amazing counting you did this week. Well done!
Alecxa for your effort and concentration on all tasks!
Rex for always trying your best in class in everything we do.
Tane for always being a kind, caring and considerate member of our class. You make Jesus real everyday.
Travis for being an enthusiastic learner who is always ready to share his thoughts and ideas.
Gabriel for your wonderful effort in all activities. Your persistence is commendable!
Isla for being a blessing in our classroom. You are caring, kind and a willing helper.
Nate for contributing great ideas and showing a positive attitude to all learning areas.
Lacey for being such a thoughtful and patient team member this week. You set a great example.
Ellis for the persistence and resilience you have shown this week to complete NAPLAN and tasks in class with a cast on your arm.
Zander for displaying initiative and problem-solving strategies in the classroom. You help to keep the classroom a productive learning environment.
Connor for the way you demonstrate empathy and selflessness towards your classmates. You are an excellent example of a future leader in our class.
Thomas for always having a positive attitude and willingness to lend a hand. I see the ‘Spirit of Jesus’ in you when you smile and bring joy to your peers. We are grateful to have you in our class.
Ashton for your great knowledge and understanding when working with fractions. You are a ‘Fraction Wizard’ when it comes to equivalent fractions. Keep it up!
Harriet for your thoughtful insights into living according to the CST: The Common Good.
Tyrell for taking responsibility for your own learning in maths. We are impressed with your motivation and enthusiasm. Keep up the great work Tyrell.
Leo for the effort you put into your comic strip narrative! Can a character really have that many complications in one story? So funny! Well done!
Tyler for the huge effort you are putting into all of your schoolwork! So very pleasing to see!
Tayla for your willingness to stick to a new task. We are very proud of your hard work.
Mackenzie for your great planning and writing of narratives. You have a wonderful imagination.
Layla for the bright energy you bring to the classroom every day. You brighten my day.
Logan for the hard work and effort you put into every task. You set a great example to others.
Callyn for using excellent persuasive techniques and attention to detail in your writing tasks this week.
Wyatt for researching and presenting your Genius Hour project on the Dodge with enthusiasm.