Term 3/4 Key Dates
|Friday 25 September||
End of term
|Monday 12 October||
Staff Development Day - High Impact Teaching Strategy - Explicit Instruction
|Tuesday 13 October||
Students return for Term Four
|Thursday 22 October||
http://www.advancedlife.com.au/ CODE AN3 WE9 3JZ
End of Term
I would like to offer my heart-felt thanks to our parent body and broader school community for your support during a term laced with restrictions. Due to your effort, our students and staff have remained in good health throughout the term and we have had a wonderfully settled term of learning.
I am appreciative of our staff who have dedicated extra hours to participate in professional learning this term. They also have spent many hours implementing their learning into explicit programs for their students.
I would also like to acknowledge our relief staff for their dedication to St Mary's, often putting work at St Mary's before other offers.
Please enjoy a well-earned rest and we will see our students back to commence Term 4 on Tuesday 13 October.
Term Four concludes for students on Wednesday 16 December
Term One 2021
27 January 2021 - Staff Planning Day (Wednesday)
28 January 2021- Staff Archdiocesan Systems Day (Thursday)
29 January 2021 - Year 1- Year 6 students commence (Friday)
1 February 2021 - Kindergarten students start (Monday)
*Kindergarten students have a rest during each Wednesday during February (3/10/17/24 February)
COVID restrictions for Schools Update
The Catholic Education Archdiocese of Canberra & Goulburn provided an update on 19 August relating to the current restrictions for NSW Catholic Schools, as advised by NSW Health.
They are as follows:
- Assemblies to be limited to 15 minutes - preferably avoided (applies to school and year assemblies).
- Students and staff with flu-like symptoms must not attend school or be sent home and tested for COVID-19.
- Where COVID-19 testing has occurred due to flu-like symptoms, and not due to close contact with a positive COVID-19 case, the person being tested must self-isolate until they receive a negative result. If the result is positive, they are required to self-isolate for 14 days. Family members are not required to self-isolate until the test result is received - although we encourage them to do so.
- The school must sight a negative test result before staff/students return to school.
- Staff/students must be symptom-free before returning to school.
- Schools must keep a record of negative staff/student’s tests in a central file.
- Schools should limit learning activities to year groups where possible (this excludes playgrounds, before school, recess and lunch activities).
- Only external providers of essential curriculum may continue activities (eg. music tutors, Healthy Harold, sport skill development programs etc).
- External providers must have a COVID-19 Safe Plan which is sighted and reviewed by the school before commencing activities. This does not apply to Allied Health Providers who are providing one on one services.
- No overnight excursions.
- Day time excursions are permitted within the local area only, subject to appropriate risk assessments.
- There are to be no formals or graduation ceremonies.
- No mixing of students from different regions including for sport, drama and debating.
Kinder and Year 7 Orientation
- Orientation to be delayed until Term 4.
- All face-to-face P&F activities to cease and be conducted remotely.
Staff Gatherings/ Professional Learning
- All staff gatherings are to be on MS Teams. If professional learning needs to be face-to-face it should be limited to the number of people required to achieve the educational outcomes practising social distance. A record of attendance is to be taken. It must only occur by exception.
Singing/ Instruments/ Dancing
- No singing, choirs or chanting activities.
- No wind instruments in a group setting.
- Dance activities are permitted but require a COVID-19 Safe Plan.
- No parents or carers on site unless the meeting is considered essential and should be by exception.
- All visitors must accept terms and conditions (social distancing, enhanced hygiene protocols etc.) prior to entering the school.
The NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian has made a statement today relating to the easing of restrictions in NSW. When I receive further information from the Catholic Education Office about this, I will distribute it.
Term Four Clubs
Next term the following clubs will be on offer:
|Thursday||11.25am||Peace Garden||Garden Club|
|Friday||11.25am||Lego Club||MP Hall|
|Daily||8.00am||Old Hall||Morning Club|
Next term the students may return to school in their full summer uniform. For boys this includes the grey short-sleeve shirt and shorts with grey socks with the green and gold band, only available from our Uniform Shop. Girls are to wear the summer dress with white socks that are either long or folded at the ankle - not short anklet sports socks. If you are shopping for shoes over the break please refer to our school shoe policy. Black sandshoe style shoes ARE NOT permitted.
Last weekend Year Four students Saxon, Ava, William, Finn, Amelia, Naomi and Marli received the Sacrament of Eucharist in beautiful ceremonies in Gouburn, Taralga and Crookwell. Congratulations to each of the students involved. Thank you to their families for supporting them through the program and on their faith journey ahead.
Thank you to Belinda Cudaj for preparing the children for this very special Sacrament and to Sr Rosemary and Mrs Skelly for assisting the organisation and planning.
Our school photographs will be taken on 22 October in Week 2 of Term 4.
To order photographs go to www.advancedlife.com.au and type in the nine-digit code AN3 WE9 3JZ. Alternatively, you may send back the envelope distributed in Week 8.
Sibling photographs can also be ordered online or by requesting an envelope from the Office.
Toys & Technology
At St Mary's we encourage students to leave their toys at home. We are happy to supply our students with equipment to play with at break time and are always open to suggestions about suitable play equipment and activities. If a child does decide to bring a toy to school, please be aware that they do this at their own risk. Whilst we encourage our students to respect other people and their possessions, sometimes things can get lost or accidentally broken. It would be a pity if this happened to something that is special to the child.
As there is an increasing amount of technology coming to school with students each day we ask that devices are clearly labelled. It is essential that all devices are left in the basket upon arrival at school. Labelling devices will ensure that they are returned to the correct students at the end of the day.
Operation Christmas Child
Operation Christmas Child (OCC) is a project of Samaritan’s Purse. It partners with local churches in developing nations to reach out to children by providing gift-filled shoeboxes to children in need.
As a school, we will aim to fill as many boxes as we can. Items can include small toys, hair accessories, a hairbrush, toothbrush, skipping rope, marbles, pencils, notepads, textas, handkerchiefs etc.
If you would prefer to send in a couple of dollars to go towards the $10 postage per box, rather than send in an item, this would also be appreciated.
You know empathy is important, but how can you teach it?
Developing empathy in children of any age is vital. But how? And why do kids struggle with empathy? 10 useful strategies included.
I’m mentoring a 13-year-old girl who is being socially excluded. She is hurting and very lonely. Lately, she has been spending lunchtimes at school with a group of girls who have begrudgingly included her at the request of their teacher. However, it changed yesterday.
She went out to the lawn where they usually meet and the girls were all sitting in a circle. They were sitting with their legs crossed and their knees touching. They had formed an impenetrable little circle of inclusion and there was clearly no room for my little girl. She was out. They ignored her and then when she was walking away, they giggled.
It would be easy to demonise these little girls. How could they be so cruel? Where is their empathy? But it isn’t that easy. Even the very best of our kids go through stages where they act in ways that would horrify their parents and even makes them feel sick in hindsight.
First, we need to understand the two types of empathy and why it is sometimes hard for kids, especially our tweens and teens
TWO TYPES OF EMPATHY
There are two types of empathy, affective empathy and cognitive empathy. One comes naturally, one doesn’t.
Affective empathy is the kind we are all born with. This is where we naturally react to another person’s display of emotions. If someone is upset we feel upset too. If someone else smiles, we instinctively smile too.
We don’t all have affective empathy in equal amounts, but we all have it. It is like an inner light. Unfortunately, sometimes we choose to switch our empathy light off. That’s what the girls on the lawn did.
WHY DO CHILDREN TURN OFF THEIR AFFECTIVE EMPATHY?
All kids occasionally turn off their affective empathy, for a few reasons:
- They often have undeveloped emotional intelligence
- They have to make themselves vulnerable
- They might have to choose empathy over belonging, and we all know that belonging is so important to them
Psychologist Jane Carmignani says, “Bullying and friendship issues gather speed because kids depersonalise. They justify their actions or ignore how the other child feels. They will carry on with hurtful behaviour because there will be some short-term gain for them. Usually, the gain is in developing their own status, sense of belonging, reputation etc. They don’t naturally consider the consequences of their actions.
“This depersonalisation is made worse if life for them is particularly challenging at the time. Then they are even less likely to pay attention to how others feel. Their focus is on themselves and meeting their own needs.”
That’s why we need cognitive empathy.
Cognitive empathy or ‘perspective taking’ is when we decide to really try to take someone else’s point of view. It is beyond what comes naturally. In Denmark, schools have classes once a week to teach it!
Cognitive empathy is attempting to feel what the other person feels in order to better understand and relate to them. It’s deliberately trying to make our empathy light brighter. This is the empathy we can teach our kids
DEVELOPING EMPATHY: 10 STRATEGIES
- We can teach the definition of empathy. This alone will begin the process of self-awareness. Am I an empathetic person? Could I be more empathetic?
- Teach what empathy is…
- Listening to understand
- Allowing new ideas in
- Making ourselves vulnerable enough to feel what someone else feels
- Feeling with someone, not for someone
- Seeing others as equal to ourselves
- Removing ourselves from the picture and focusing solely on someone else
- Teach what empathy is not…
- Judging or feeling pity
- Silver lining someone’s misfortune. Empathy never says, “At least…”
- Hijacking the conversation. Comparing their sad experience or joy with yours by telling your own story
- Waiting for your turn to talk instead of listening
- Empathy never puts people down
- Model vulnerability.Carmignani says, “Modelling vulnerability is how we begin to develop emotional intelligence in our kids. Vulnerability is more honest and more authentic than what they are seeing on television and on social media.” They need to see it in the significant adults in their lives.”
- Develop the ability to actively listenand read body language, give feedback and check they’ve understood what the other person is saying and feeling.
- Reduce social media use.Digital interaction allows kids to distance themselves. Connection is what is needed.
- Practise from a young age and continue…forever!
- Start with pets and siblings with little kids. “How does Meow feel when you pull his tail?”
- Build up to friends and characters on television.
- Gradually get kids to think about people of different ages and in completely different situations to themselves.
- Read to them a lot and often when they are young, and even when they are older, so you can discuss what is read. Then pump them full of fiction. Fiction is particularly great because it trains kids to take someone else’s perspective.
- Travel. Not 5-star hotel travel. Your worldview isn’t changed by being in the Hilton in every city. I mean ‘get amongst it travel’. You don’t find many bigots and bullies who are well travelled. People learn that the world is large and they are a tiny part of it. They learn how others live and why others are valuable. They see other lives…and there is no going back from there.
- Make sure kids are involved in service. Getting to know people who are living with disadvantages such as disabilities and poverty builds empathy. It also feels good to show compassion and help, so the process is positively reinforced.
The reality is empathy has to compete with the need to fit in and the fear of not being good enough and dozens of other disappointing human drivers. But…it is definitely a step in the right direction. Empathy can be the light in the dark spaces of human interaction. We just need to make it shine brightly.
Facebook Messenger for Kids
This is a very important message about social media interaction.
The Power of Play and Experiences
Remember to spend time with your children during the holidays. Encourage them to play board games, card games and complete jig-saw puzzles. Play ‘I Spy’ using letters, numbers and words. These activities all assist in connecting the ‘wires in our brains’. Providing our children with experiences broadens their ability to use vocabulary and builds their communication and writing skills. Children are better able to write about things they have experienced.
Learning musical instruments is another great way for children to also improve the capacity of their brain, once again connecting those pathways. Listening to music is also a great thing to do!
Remember to READ in the holidays! Encourage your children to read but also remember to read to them. Children are never too old to be read to!
Yoga and Mindfulness
We all know the benefits of moving for our mental and physical wellbeing. There are many wonderful websites and resources for teaching your child yoga as a calming routine. Yoga can help your child grow in confidence, as they master new poses and create a flow between the body and mind. Regular yoga poses help build, stretch and strengthen coordination, flexibility and balance. Concentration, attention, focus and the behaviour of students improves with the implementation of yoga techniques. Controlled breathing can assist with moments of anxiety and stress. Yoga does not focus on an ability level but allows you to be the best you can be. Kids yoga can include songs, story-telling and word play.
There are many sites available to visit if you want to try yoga at home with your children.
Allow your child opportunities to experience calming activities: yoga, listening to music, playing an instrument, colouring-in, meditating and building with lego. Just like adults, children need time out from over-stimulation and constant activity.
Year 5 Genius Hour
Year 5 have been working very hard all term on their genius hour projects. But what exactly is genius hour? Well, genius hour is one hour every week when everyone can do their own thing like building a mini house model or making something on a game or even making a game. It is a time when the students can express themselves and test their limits on what they can do. It’s also to see what they are interested in and their choice of fun. I really enjoyed this project and I think it is a really good idea and everyone should get a chance to try it. By Aylish Parsons
In Term Three Year 5 did a project named Genius Hour. Genius Hour is a project that we presented at school. Many people choose different types of things such as Minecraft, Making Bookshelves, Making Different Things Made Out Of Leather, Gardening, Sheep and many other things. Once we picked our topics we researched that topic and then Presented our work that we had worked on the past 8 Tuesday’s. For my Genius Hour I did a property on Minecraft. I believe that Genius Hour is finding something that you would like to learn more about and finding something that you are passionate about. I loved doing Genius Hour for 2020. By George Skelly
Congratulations to Jake Cosgrove, Sethan Grove and Toby Charnock who have been selected to take part in the Southern Tablelands Cricket Academy.
Well done boys and good luck!
St Mary's Cookbook
We've had a good number of recipes come through, but would love some more.
If you, or anyone you know, are willing to share your favourite recipe(s) that would be fantastic!!! Please email them to Belinda Tarlinton at Office.Stmarysc@cg.catholic.edu.au
Coordinator's Daria Lawson & Tash McCormack
Tuckshop Term 4 Roster
If you can help next term, please complete the form- Tuckshop Helpers
Remember, many hands mean less work!
If you have a date that you can or cannot do for Term 4, please let Rechell Naughton early so we do not have too many changes to the roster.
For Parish and Sacramental matters please forward your enquiries to Parish Secretary, Janet Haynes or Pastoral Associate Sr Rosemary via email or call into the Parish Office at the Old Convent Building on Tuesdays or Thursdays.
Phone: 48321 633
Address: 55 Wade Street (the Old Convent Building)
8 Week Program for Girls
Surviving the girls world of good and challenging relationships. Navigating friendships for girls can be an extremely challenging experience. There are some growing-up struggles that are unique to female friendships. This 8 week program for girls will help them gain a stronger sense of self-worth and belonging in their families, with their peers, and in their communities.
Over this 8 week program we will go on a journey that will help discover the keys to building healthy friendships.
- Identify strengths and potential difficulties.
- Learn how to avoid peer pressure to behave a certain way.
- Develop strong, healthy relationships with others.
- Explore their self-identity in social groups.
- Discover the power behind words in conversations.
- Practice positive self-thought with positive words.
This is an 8 week group program for 8-12yr old girls that will run on Friday afternoons- 4.30pm-5.30pm.
$200 for the program. *payment plans available.
Program will run 16th October- 4th December
Please let me know if you would like to book your daughter in as there are limited spots available.
Contact: Jacinta Ojwang- Holistic Counsellor and Intern Psychotherapist
Crookwell Vacation Care
Waste, Plastic & Bees Wax Wraps
Free School Holiday Landcare Workshop
Find out how you can do your bit to get rid of plastic pollution by making your own bees wax wraps. All materials included!
Learn all about composting and recycling in this interactive online activity.
Tuesday 29th September 11am-12pm
Please register by 22/9/20 to receive your workshop kit.
For ages 6 and up.
To register please contact;
Crookwell: 0447 242 474 firstname.lastname@example.org
Gunning: 0488 027 653 email@example.com