2023 Term 2 Week 4
Dear St Joseph’s Community,
May is a month when we reflect on the importance of Mary, the mother of Jesus, in the life of the Church and in our own lives. Mary’s character is a deep well from which we draw rich examples of how to live a good life, regardless of our religious identity. Her character speaks to values such as faith, obedience, humility, resilience and unconditional love—universal qualities to which we can all aspire.
Unwavering Trust and Commitment
Mary's life was dramatically changed by her extraordinary trust and commitment. When informed by a messenger that she was chosen to conceive and bear a son, despite her circumstances, she accepted with a simple and humble ‘yes’. This acceptance is a lesson in trust and commitment, especially when the path ahead seems uncertain or impossible.
Humility and Gratitude
Mary also exemplifies humility, seeking no personal recognition. Instead, she expressed her gratitude, stating, "My soul magnifies the Lord.” This humility and gratitude are qualities to which we can all aspire.
Strength Amidst Challenges
Parenting is far from easy, and Mary’s experience was no different. She faced numerous challenges, from unconventional birth circumstances to witnessing her son's trials. Yet, she endured these with remarkable strength and faith. Her story is a reminder to parents that challenges are part of life's journey, and it's our resilience and faith in our children and ourselves, and, sometimes, something greater than ourselves, that help us to navigate these difficulties.
Mary's love for her son was steadfast and unwavering. She stayed by his side, even in the most painful circumstances. This poignant depiction of a mother's love serves as a reminder to us all in our role as parents about the power of unconditional love.
As parents navigating the complexities of raising children, we can look to Mary's example to help foster these virtues in our own lives and the lives of our children.
Mother’s Day Liturgy
On Friday, we celebrated our Mother’s Day Liturgy in McCarthy Hall. This was a wonderful opportunity to acknowledge all of those special women in the lives of our students and their families. It was amazing to see so many of these women who were able to join us for this event. We thank Fr Max for blessing the medals of St Gerard Majella, which were given to all mothers present and for blessing our mothers. Thank you to Kate Jones and the student leaders for their work in leading this liturgy. Thanks too to the Parent Assembly representatives who provided morning tea on Friday before our liturgy. I would also like to acknowledge the prayerfulness and reverence that our students brought with them into the liturgy. We hope all of our mothers and mother figures were thoroughly spoiled last Sunday.
Tell Them From Me
A sincere thank you to all parents who were able to share their voices through the Tell Them From Me survey. We had a very strong response from parents, and I really appreciate the time so many of you were able to give. I look forward to sharing the feedback from the surveys back to the parent community.
School Enrolment Open Day
We will hold our school’s Open Day for 2024 enrolments THIS Sunday, 21 May, from 10:00am - 12:00pm. This will provide prospective families with an opportunity to tour our school, for young people to engage in some activities in the Kindergarten classroom and for families to meet staff members.
A poster to advertise the open morning is found below. We would love families to share this with those families they know who may be interested in joining our school community in 2024.
During Week 8 this term, our school will be having our three-yearly school review. This is a positive and affirming process for our school and will help to shape the agenda for our next three-year Strategic Plan from 2024-2026. In the coming weeks, we will be reaching out via Compass, asking parents who may be interested, if they can come to meet in small groups with members of the review team. This would likely be in the afternoon, close to school finishing time. Stay tuned for more information on Compass. We thank our parents for their support of the school review process.
Parish School Forum - Change of Date
In last week’s newsletter, we advised the date of the next Parish School Forum meeting as Tuesday, May 23, in the Staff Room. Unfortunately, this date clashed with another system event, so we have needed to change this to Thursday, 1 June at 7:00 pm in the staff room.
The Draft Agenda includes:
- Representative Sports Singlets
- School Improvement Overview - approaching our new Strategic Plan
- School Review - overview and how you can be involved
- Tell Them From Me - data unpacking and overview
- Parent Assembly - Proposed opportunities for parent engagement
- Mission - process for feedback on how we are progressing in this domain
Attending school every day (and every minute of every day) is so important for the social, emotional and academic growth of our children. Every day counts. The impact of missing time at school is significant.
Arriving late to school can also be problematic. The morning session is when students are welcomed into our school and when key learning happens. When a student arrives late to school, they miss these opportunities to connect with their peers and their teachers. It is also challenging for students who arrive late to connect with the learning that has been initiated.
Below is an infographic that highlights the cumulative impact of missing days of school or arriving late to school.
Transport NSW has asked schools to remind students to wear a seat belt while travelling on the bus to and from school. While travelling on the bus, students are to follow the Transport NSW Code of Conduct for School Students. It is every student's responsibility to behave in a manner that ensures the safety and comfort of passengers and drivers. This includes wearing the seat belt properly adjusted and fastened, if one is available, while travelling on the bus. Please remind students to treat the bus driver with respect and follow any requests to wear a seat belt to ensure their safety, their peers and the driver.
Go gently and with love,
Acknowledgement to Country
Jingi Walla ( Jin-gee-wah-la ) Hello….
As we journey on this land of the Bundjalung Nation on which St Joseph’s stands, we pay our respects to the Elders - the past, present and emerging leaders of the Bundjalung Nation. We acknowledge and respect their culture, their heritage and their beliefs as stewards of the land, sea, the earth and heavens, animals and vegetation.
Learning & Teaching News
Mathematics Home Learning Activities
These activities are fun and engaging ways to support, consolidate and extend mathematical understanding. Focus areas include counting, place value, addition, subtraction, multiplication and division. Click on the following links for some ideas:
Strand 2: ‘Syntax’
Syntax is how we order the words in a sentence to produce a certain meaning. This strand also includes things like punctuation, verb tense, and inclusion of detail.
Here are some strategies to use with children at home to help improve their use of grammar and syntax.
- Use correct grammar and syntax when speaking or responding to your child
Don’t focus on correcting your child. For example, if your child says, "Her hitted me!" you should respond, "Did she hit you?" Always respond as an adult. Don’t use baby talk.
- Play sentence games
Cut pictures of everyday items from magazines, paste them on cards, and have your child give a sentence verbally describing the object to the other players for them to guess the item. ("It has icing you can eat and candles that tell how old you are.")
- Use closed sentences
like "Mad Libs®" for practice using correct word forms.
These kinds of activities are great for practice with verbs, adjectives, and adverbs.
Mr Phil Crosby - Assistant Principal Learning & Teaching
Dio. Cross Country will be held in Grafton next Tuesday, 23rd May. We wish the following students luck as they represent our Zone:
Braith Duncan, Will Gallagher, Josie Layland, Sully Mitchell and Jordy Thompson .
Miss Linsey MacDonald - Sport Co-Ordinator
The Stage 1 students of our school recently went on an exciting excursion to the Australian Sea Bird and Turtle Rescue in Ballina. The trip was both educational and fun-filled as the students got a first-hand experience of the rescue work done by the organisation and saw three beautiful turtles. To add to the excitement, author, Kim Michelle Toft, was also present (unexpectedly), and she read one of her books to the students. The students were fantastic and engaged throughout the visit. They also had the opportunity to learn about different sea creatures and their habitats, witnessing them recovering in their tanks. Overall, it was a wonderful experience for the students, and everyone had a great time. We are grateful to the staff of the Australian Sea Bird and Turtle Rescue, our parent volunteers and Kim Michelle Toft for making the excursion a success.
Mrs Dana Crosby
We are excited to finally be able to welcome parents (and grandparents) back as volunteers in our Canteen. As a consequence of the last 3 years of Covid restrictions, we are now feeling the loss of volunteer numbers to call upon and Emma needs help! Whether you can volunteer for only 1 day a term or every week, Emma is keen to hear from you. Our canteen operates on a Wednesday and Friday. Volunteers are needed from approximately 9am-1pm (4 hours) and are required to have a Working With Children Check (volunteer - so no cost involved). Unfortunately, volunteers are not able to bring children with them when helping in the canteen.
Please contact Emma via email: email@example.com for further information.
Getting the Most out of Gaming WEBINAR
The Council of Catholic School Parents NSW/ACT, in conjunction with the eSafety Commissioner, is holding a 45 minute webinar on Tuesday, 23 May, to provide families with strategies for supporting children and young people to have safe, positive experiences when playing games online. It is designed for parents and carers of children aged 7 to 14.
It will cover the following:
- when gaming can be beneficial;
- strategies to promote better in-game experiences;
- how to keep children safe online – using safety and privacy settings in games and platforms;
- strategies to promote more balanced gaming and how to create smoother transitions from game-play to other activities; and
- the key online risks and where to find help for things like bullying and harassment in games.
For more information and to register, click here.
Please click on the link below to see the school calendar to view upcoming events:
For Your Information
Year 6 Fundraiser - BOOK DONATIONS please!
A reminder to drop in your donations by THIS FRIDAY, 19 May. Thank you for your support.
Ballina Shire Council wishes to advise that our crews will be commencing road resurfacing works on a section of Cawley Place, Alstonville from Wednesday, 17 May 2023. Please click on the link below for more information.