2021 Term 3 Week 8
In Term 3 there are a number of events that we have traditionally celebrated: the Anniversary of Long Tan, Grandparents Day, the Feast Days of The Assumption of the Blessed Mary, the Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary and the Sisters of Mercy; as well as Father's Day. Due to the current restrictions we are unable to acknowledge these events as we would like, however they still hold a special place in our school culture.
This term we farewelled Ms Jansen who commenced her maternity leave, and welcomed Mrs Samantha Ford back to St Mary's Primary. We are sure Mrs Ford did not imagine her first few weeks at St Mary's could be so different! We look forward to welcoming Mrs Hannah Gorman in Term 4 as she teams with Mrs Ford in Year 2.
We thank everyone for their continued support of St Mary's. The restrictions and changes to our daily routine have been a challenge for all of us. In our feature article we are sharing some news and images from each of our stage groups, ranging from zoom sessions to the enterprising activities devised by students. We are sure that you will enjoy seeing them as much as we did.
Finally, please continue to follow the NSW Health recommendations. School updates will be provided via schoolzine.
For your Information
Brothers Cricket Club
Brothers Cricket Club is looking for Girls and Boys who would like to play Cricket in the Under 10’s, Under 12’s and Under 14 age divisions for the coming cricket season which commences in September.
When training commences it will be held on a Tuesday afternoons at the cricket nets in Ryan Street South Grafton.
The Under 10’s games are played on a Saturday Morning and other age divisions are played afternoons during the week.
Kids sports vouchers can be used for registration.
For further information please contact –
Andrew Kinnane 0419 986 924 or email@example.com
Judy Disson 0409037361 firstname.lastname@example.org
The Long Way Home writing competition happens each year in May where students from Year 2 right through to adults have the opportunity to write a short story based on an annual theme, with the chance to be chosen to be published in a local book titled The Long Way Home, Short Stories from the Clarence Valley.
The competition is in its 4th year and the theme was Look Up. Many students from our school entered the writing competition this year, with their story being no more than 150 words. With over 240 entries from students around the Clarence Valley, we are very pleased to announce that 8 of our amazing students' stories have been chosen to be published in the book, due to be released in December this year.
Please enjoy reading these wonderful stories which are printed below.
by Charlotte Cheng Year 6
Her bright phone screen flickered in her hand,
As the video she watched played on.
She slowly and carefully went up to stand,
But a voice in her head murmured, look up, don’t prolong.
Felicity refused but the voice kept pursuing,
Look up at your home, at it’s fascinating history.
She reluctantly looked up at the world still renewing,
We’ve been through a lot, thought Felicity.
Felicity stared down at her glowing device,
The voice spoke again, to her dismay.
Please look up, a minute will suffice,
So she looked up, without any say.
That second time, memories flooded into her mind,
Memories of bushfires, COVID 19.
Recollections of how floods were all you could find.
Then she put her device on her silver canteen.
So reader, look up,
Listen to that little voice in your head.
As it whispers on and on,
Look up, look up, look up.
by Parker Bancroft Year 2
I look up at the bonfire stars blazing in the deep, dark night sky. I think about the galaxy and wonder how many more planets there are that no one has discovered yet.
I feel tiny, like a bug trapped in a huge web and am unsure about the future. I notice the pictures and patterns in the sky that tell stories about our historical past.
I see a rare sighting of a red moon and a shooting star and am filled with joy and excitement. I remember to make a wish and wonder if it will come true.
I find myself looking at the red moon and I'm mesmerized by wondering if maybe one day we could live there and how amazing it would be.
I want to go there and discover all the answers to our problems here on planet Earth.
by Callum Cameron Year 4
Click! Boom! Ding! Game over! My sister yells for me to come outside and play. I say no because this game is a lot more fun.
As I lay in bed that night I think about playing outside. It seriously can’t be that good can it? The next morning as I am getting ready for school, mum tells me I have to walk. As I step outside, a cool, calm breeze brushes up against my face and the autumn leaves circle like a tornado. The warm, bright sun covers me like a blanket. It feels so good.
Once again my sister calls me outside but this time I don’t say no. I rush out the door to join her and begin breathing like a dragon. Today it is freezing outside. It's like a blizzard. I think staying outside is worth it because there is never a game over out here.
'A Lesson Never Learnt'
By Solina Bendle Year 4
I wake up to the sound of hurdling waves crashing along the beach and walk down the hillside to the salty smelling sea. The sand squishes between my toes. I look down. My heart sinks. In the sand are tiny pieces of multicoloured plastic. I look up at my favorite tree. Its branches sway in the breeze. Then I see something, a plastic bag suffocating the leaves. I can't see the sky through the smoke. I look out at the water. In it are bottle caps and cans bobbing up and down. Angry tears trickle down my cheek. I am angry at the people from generations before me. They didn't look after our planet. I pick up a rock, underneath it are shards of glass. Frustration and fear take over and I wonder what else will happen to my home and my land?
by Jamieson Allen Year 4
I look at the stars and wonder how they got there. I slowly drift off to sleep. Where am I? Why are there no colours? I think I've come back to when only the stars existed. I hear a voice that tells me the stars have always existed. I go deeper into space. I see more. I feel more. I hear more. I start to drift deeper into space. A planet comes into view. A dark planet, full of unfamiliar things. I walk around and notice something light and furry. I try to get closer and realise it's a human. I wave, trying to be friendly but it disappears. Suddenly I realise I am a long way from home. Which way is home? I look up to what I assume are birds circling above me. I close my eyes. When I open them, I see the familiar morning sun.
by Olivia Peppernell Year 4
I remember sinking, feeling weak like I couldn’t move, doubting myself. I felt my lungs collapsing on each other. My heart broke into little pieces. I knew I couldn’t see it but I could feel it and it was a killing pain, a stabbing pain. No oxygen, just deep, black, cold water as I sunk deeper by the second. My eyes were clinging shut as I knew they would burn from the salty water that surrounded me. I wanted to open my eyes. I really did. I was trying to be brave and build my confidence to look up. I knew that if I did I would be ok. My eyes slowly opened and I felt a great push against my back like I was floating on top of a whale. As I neared the surface I could see the clouds that seemed to form the words... just...look...up.
by Stella Skeels Year 4
As I opened my eyes I suddenly remembered flashing lights carrying me away and then noticed the plaster cast on my arm and it all came flooding back.
I could hear the birds singing in the trees so I went outside to catch a glimpse of them. I decided to climb up into the tree. As I reached the top I finally saw the spectacular colours. It was breathtaking. Suddenly, out of nowhere, an eagle flew across my head. I watched it glide around above me. Hypnotized by the sight, I didn’t notice a rainbow lorikeet hopping towards me. The vivid colours shocked me as it landed on my shoulder. I watched it fly away into the distance to join it’s flock. From halfway across the block I heard dad shout “time for lunch kiddo”. The last thing I remember is replying, ”I’ll be there in a second”.
'The Clarence River'
by Sabrina Golding Year 5
The Grafton bridges overlook the Clarence river. The sun shines on the glistening water with its beauty. Mother nature at its finest. Golden hour has just arrived. The best selfies you could ever take with these rays shining on you. Everyone has to get the best snaps when it’s time.
The sun has slowly sunk into the water and white stars make a zodiac sign in the dark blue sky. A pisces sign, the two fish swimming together. You could just imagine the fish swimming through the night sky. The train is passing. You see the carriages and the graffiti on them each. Its windows shine from the glow of the moon. My father told me that the Easter Bunny lives there. Look up at the moon and you can see her.
Greetings to everyone in Kindergarten and a very special welcome to our new class member, Teddy Grayson! We are missing you all very much and would like to pass on our thanks to all of our wonderful parents and carers for the way in which you have embraced and engaged with the different learning platforms over the past three weeks.
We have been delighted with the work you have been able to complete and it has been great to see families uploading work and pictures to SeeSaw so we can see what you have been up to. We have enjoyed listening to your retelling of “The Very Hungry Caterpillar” and there has been some great word building and reading using your sounds.
Keep sending through your pictures and stories about any special gardening or craft projects you are undertaking. There are certainly some budding chefs in Kindergarten 2021!
We wish all of our Kindergarten dads and father figures a very special Father’s Day this Sunday. May you have a wonderful day with your family and enjoy your BBQ treat!
In Stage 1, we have been adjusting well to blended learning. At home, students have been working on their booklets, cooking, gardening, creating, painting and learning online. It has been great to see some of our students interacting with our Google Classroom and SeeSaw platforms where they have been sharing photos and videos of what learning looks like at their house.
At school, we have been working hard in the mornings and doing fun activities in the afternoons. Some of these activities have been going on adventures with our ‘flattened’ teachers, watching and listening to books, dressing up, creating and much more. We have also been videoing ourselves saying hello to our Stage 1 friends at home and posting the video onto our platforms.
Over the past couple of weeks, Stage 2 has enjoyed engaging in the online learning tasks set each day on the Google Classroom. We have been having a zoom meeting each week to check in on each other and see how we are all going and it has been wonderful to see so many happy and smiling faces online.
Year 4 also welcomed a new class member last week, Ryan Smith. Ryan joined us for a zoom and was warmly welcomed by lots of friendly faces. We look forward to welcoming him in person in the coming weeks. Sadly, we also said goodbye to our favourite twins in Year 3, Annie and Elsie Austin, who have moved to Groote Eylandt in the Northern Territory. We wish them all the very best for the future!
It is great that students are sharing what they are enjoying on their daily classroom slides and engaging so enthusiastically in their learning. A new slide is added each day to the Google Classroom with spelling, reading, writing, maths and religion tasks supplied, as well as some 'fun and games' to keep us all entertained. Don’t forget to pick up your new pack, and send in or share some photos of Mrs B and Mrs M doing fun things with you at home or out and about.
Stage 3 has been enthusiastic and highly engaged with their blended learning. They have continued to demonstrate a commitment to their learning and are producing work of a high standard. The tasks presented have developed over the past weeks as the students have shared their ideas for things they wanted to see in the daily activities. We have aimed to include some brain breaks, well-being activities and items that are just for fun.
Students created some beautiful liturgies and prayer spaces which they shared and celebrated with their families. They have explored the Catholic Social Teachings and considered ways they can incorporate these teachings in their own lives.
Last week in Writing we were all about Monsters. This week we are focusing on the Paralympics. Stage 3 has a lot of exciting writing to share with you all. They have created a book ready for when we all return to school. Students this week have been creating posters about athletes and have even been able to write a personal letter to an athlete to encourage them at the games.
Stage 3 have been very engaged with their rich maths activities, sharing their mathematical thinking on their daily slides. Tasks are set with a wide range of difficulty to cater for learners at all levels. Students are supported with recorded enabling videos to help solve problems. Others, if they choose, can extend themselves with more difficult tasks of a similar nature.
Our twice-weekly Zoom meetings are just one of the ways Stage 3 are staying connected as they continue to communicate through the Google Classroom platform. Although missing the daily interactions with friends at school, students are making the most of this extended time with family and have been enjoying some extra time with their fur friends who are filling in as study buddies. Overall, their willingness to pivot, seek clarification and have a go has been amazing. The future is in good hands.