12 September 2023 (Term 3 Week 9)
Dear St Joseph’s Community
We are very quickly approaching the end of term and our Family Day on Thursday, 21st of September. We know how challenging the juggle of work and other events can be for families, but we would love it if you were able to be here for some of the day!
OUR WRITING FOCUS
We are proud of our writers! As you know, writing has been a significant focus for our teachers and students this year. We have been working hard to build our understanding of how to teach writing well, especially at the sentence level. We’ve intentionally built this work into our curriculum across all key learning areas, and we have been monitoring student progress. We are already seeing a strengthening in student writing across all of our grades, and our students are writing more confidently and with greater precision and accuracy. I am so proud of our students and their teachers who have put so much work into their writing. We look forward to watching their confidence and competence continue to grow!
Sunday's second Mass reading comes from the Letter of St Paul to the Romans (Romans 13:8-10). The passage captures a beautiful and timeless truth: "Owe no one anything, except to love one another… Love does no wrong to a neighbour; therefore, love is the fulfilling of the law." This wisdom aligns seamlessly with our school motto, "Growth Through Love." We have been working hard to teach our students functional grammar lately, and this is an excellent reminder that love is often considered as a noun - a naming word. Really, we should be thinking of love as a verb - a doing word. Love is an actionable principle that enables growth. It's the cornerstone that supports the intellectual, emotional, and moral development of our children. In the classroom, on the playground, and in all our interactions, the small acts of love make the biggest impact. A comforting word, a patient ear, or a simple smile can be transformative. These are not just idle gestures but vital lessons for our children. They learn what love looks like in action and are empowered to become compassionate individuals. As parents and educators, our job is often fraught with countless responsibilities and challenges. Yet, it's helpful to remember that amidst all these tasks, our most important role is to instil this sense of love - as both a duty and a privilege. It's through love that we not only enrich our own lives but also contribute meaningfully to the community around us. Let's continue to fulfil our shared commitment to our children's growth by fostering an environment of love, both at home and at school. Wishing you a week filled with opportunities for love and growth.
OUR BELL TIMES - SHARE YOUR VOICE
We are in the process of planning some of our structures for 2024, including new structures for the timetable for each day. Our guiding principle is to ensure we are supporting the learning and wellbeing of our students. We currently have a team working on what this might look like.
One aspect we are considering is the start times of our day. Currently, our first bell rings at 9:00 am. We have one bus (Mouse Bus) that is scheduled to arrive at 8:58 but which usually arrives slightly earlier. We also know there are a number of other bus options which arrive earlier.
In light of this, for 2024, we are considering moving the first bell to either 8:50 OR 8:55. This would put us more closely in line with the other Catholic schools in our region and provide us with more time to support students in their learning and wellbeing needs. We would like your feedback on this proposed change. If you could, over the next two weeks, complete this Google Form, we would be very appreciative.
PARISH SCHOOL FORUM (PSF)
A couple of weeks ago at the PSF meeting, Janita Thomson and Jo Kelly, from the Catholic School’s Office Family School Partnerships Team, presented the two Parent Forum Models which all schools in the Diocese will need to move towards in 2024. The reason for this change is because the change in the governance model means that our current model of the PSF needs to be amended; and to ensure Diocesan-wide consistency. The two models are explained in the image below and more information can be accessed at the link below (Parent Representative Bodies Document). Parents and carers are invited to indicate their preference for the new model via the survey link below. The two models will be discussed further at an additional Parish School Forum evening in Term 4. The date is yet to be scheduled but will be advertised via the newsletter and Compass. We invite all interested parents to join us for this meeting.
We are delighted to be celebrating Family Day on Thursday 21st September.
The theme for the day is “Read! Grow! Inspire!”
9:15 - FAMILY LITURGY IN MCCARTHY HALL
We invite all family and friends to join us for this special Liturgy. There will be plenty of seating inside the hall.
10:15 - BYO PICNIC MORNING TEA
Families are asked to bring their own morning tea and join in a school wide picnic. Coffee, tea and cold drinks will be available from the canteen.
10:45 - 2:15 - ROTATION OF ACTIVITIES
Students and their families will travel in groups through five different activities based on the theme “Read! Grow! Inspire!”. Family and friends are invited to join in the fun.
Fr Max is kindly supplying lunch for all of our students, staff and visitors. To assist us with the catering and dietary requirements, could you please complete this form by this Thursday (14/9) at 9.30am. If you are able to help cook or serve the BBQ lunch, please email Mrs Jones at email@example.com.
Our annual Book Fair will be held in the library. Family and friends are invited to purchase books as a donation to our school library. Each book will have a donor book plate added to it as a sign of appreciation. Books have been hand selected for our library from the Book Warehouse Lismore. Cash sales and EFTPOS will be available.
All of the classrooms and learning spaces will be open on the day. Feel free to have a look around and explore our school.
The canteen will be selling cold drinks and snacks. Lunch is a BBQ, for catering purposes please complete this form by by this Thursday (14/9) at 9.30am.
All students, staff, family and friends are invited to dress up on the day. The theme is “Read! Grow! Inspire!” Come dressed as your favourite book character; the person who inspires you; a tree! The options are endless. Please note: students must have covered footwear and no bare shoulders or midriffs.
Learning & Teaching News
REPORTS K-6- PARENT FEEDBACK
The Diocese of Lismore has been working towards a change in our reports for K-6 students. This is responding to current research, the new NSW curriculum and the aim for consistency across all schools in the Diocese.
The reports will consist of a learner profile: an opportunity for teachers to recognise the individual characteristics, strengths and goals of a student. The profile enables parents to recognise their child’s strengths as well as guide their child on the goals that have been set. Report comments will include comments that provide specific information about how to improve - in particular, what students need to do next to progress their learning. A commitment to learning (previously called effort) indicates the combination of skills and application that students apply towards their learning.
Schools have been given two options for the report comments.
Option 1: English Comment, Mathematics Comment and other Key Learning Area Comment.
An English Comment, Mathematics Comment and General Comment on the Report Card in three separate boxes. The English and Mathematics comments will be directly under the relevant grades for the KLA, while the General comment will be located at the end of the student report.
Option 2: Three way structured student/parent/teacher conference process replaces the written comment on the Semester Student Report. Comments from the conference are recorded and stored in Compass. (This is a learning conversation that we currently have in place).
At the conference, students facilitate a conversation with parents and carers inside the classroom, where they share class and individual learning goals. Parents and carers have the opportunity to see what learning expectations are in place for students, and to see how they are progressing to meet those expectations. Teachers are available to join the conversations that are led by the students.
Both comment options would have a two part structure:
- Areas of Achievement and Growth
- Learning Goals.
We would really appreciate some feedback on which option parents might prefer for student reports. This will inform the decision made by the school going forward. The link for the feedback form is below. Could you please complete the form by the end of day, Monday 18th September.
NUMBER BLOCKS SUGGESTED VIEWING
The premise of the Number Blocks show is all based around number characters 1-10 and the various adventures they have in 'Numberland'. But the thing that is most amazing is the depth of mathematical concepts that are embedded into the show. There is a major focus on part-part-whole, counting and subsisting. It also features episodes exploring doubling, partitioning, patterns, sharing and much more. The episodes are only about 3 minutes long, but are so visually appealing and use some really catchy songs and rhymes!
RELIGIOUS EDUCATION PLANNING
Teachers are engaging in collaborative planning sessions for their upcoming Religious Education units. Our Stage 3 team have worked hard to develop excellent Project Based Learning (PBL) units as part of the renewal of Religious Education within our Diocese. All our teachers are creating opportunities within their units to engage the head, heart and hands of our students.
FAMILY DAY PLANNING
We are excited to be celebrating Family Day next week. If you haven’t yet done so, please register your attendance here for catering purposes by this Thursday (14/9) at 9.30am.
If you are able to help cook or serve the BBQ lunch, please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. Thank you in advance for your support. It is going to be an enjoyable and fun-filled day!
HANDWRITING IN STAGE 1
Stage 1 have been focusing on their handwriting. They know how important it is to write neatly and clearly, not just during the subject of Writing, but all of the time. Here are a few snaps of careful and neat writers at work.
Stage 1 had a surprise visitor on Friday morning last week. We had a very curious coastal carpet snake near our classroom. Most students were worried about this intruder but we helped to alleviate these concerns by doing some research and writing about this exciting encounter. The fact that Mr Seymour, Mr Crosby and Mr Challinor had rescued and relocated it helped a lot too!
The Family Day Book Fair will be a fabulous event. I have hand picked books from the Book Warehouse Lismore, keeping the shopping local! Every single book on sale on the day would be a wonderful addition to our school library. If you buy a book your name goes on the book plate (inside the front cover) and your student is the first to borrow it. If you can’t attend but would like to donate a book please email me (email@example.com). The book fair is one of our rotations so there will be plenty of time for all of our visitors to come in and buy. We will be accepting cash and have EFTPOS available. Your support means so much to us all!
LIBRARY BOOKS DUE BACK & HOLIDAY BORROWING
With the end of Term 3 fast approaching it is time for all student library books to be returned to the library. Students will not be borrowing this week during class time. If your student would like to borrow some books for the school holidays they are more than welcome to. The library is open before school and at lunch times for students to select and borrow their holiday reading. There are quite a few students with overdue books, could you please assist them in finding these and get them to deliver the books to the library (not to the office).
Around the School
Joeys ex-student, Trinity Mission Assistant, parishioner and Wildfire musician Daniel Periera visited Joeys to spend some time working with our choir and our student guitarist Jacob Tosic. This was very exciting as Dan lead the Joeys choir just like he used to when he was in Year 6. A big thank you to Dan for sharing your gifts with us.
Mr Murgha has a raffle running for the painting “Jiddi Season”.
- 1 tickets for $5
- 3 tickets for $10
- 4 tickets for $15
Raffle Drawn on Thursday 21st September - Family Day
All proceeds will go towards Players Gear (Polo T- Shirt, Shorts & Cap) for the local U14’s Indigenous Rugby League Team (Bundjalung Brothers) to participate at Redcliffe in the Queensland Murri Carnival (QMC) on the 26th Sept - 29th Sept 2023. All money and tickets to be returned to the school office by 9am Thursday 21 September (Family Day). Thank you Mr Murgha!
STAGE 2 GET TOGETHER
Come join us for a play and morning tea on Sunday September 24 10am-12pm at Wollongbar skate park . Bring a plate to share, picnic rug, drinks, chairs, scooters, balls. All welcome, including siblings. We'll aim to get one of the tables towards the back of the skate ramp. Hope to see you there.