Deputy Principal Archives

25 June 2018

Congratulations
The benefits for children being involved in the Arts are innumerable. Arts experiences such as learning a musical instrument, being part of a choir or other performance group enables children to nurture their creativity and confidence.  They experience the benefits that evolve from continued dedication and practice, whilst developing their skills of collaboration as they work with others towards the common goal of creating amazing performances for others to enjoy.

This week we celebrate those children who have successfully auditioned for the Christchurch Schools Music Festival representative groups. They are:


Orchestra

Anna Gardiner
Amelia Hansen
Maike Loof
Miu Terakawa-Kim
Penelope Van Rij
Jago Wallace


Junior Choir
Laura Broadhurst
Sneha Datla
Danielle Hansen
Darcy Hollis
Kate Jenkins

 

 

St Margaret’s College Production – Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland
Next Monday 2 July, the Year 3 – 6 children have the opportunity to be the audience for the matinee performance of St Margaret’s College Junior School Production `Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland’.   The production has a cast of over 200 girls from Year 1 – 13 who will all sing and dance and act in this multi-media production.

We will be walking to the Charles Luney Auditorium at St Margaret’s College, leaving school at 10.30am and returning by 1pm. There is no cost involved in this trip. Your classroom teacher will be in touch with you with more details about this event. This performance is not suitable for preschoolers.

Jill Evans

18 June 2018

Ehara taku toa i te toa takitahi Engari, he toa takitini – Success is not in the work of one but the work of many.

I began my newsletter address with this whakatauki a couple of weeks ago and yet I find myself wanting to restate it in order to describe the past week here at Elmwood.

Yet another community event occurred that highlighted what a supportive, collaborative school family we are.  The combined efforts of many, many people over many, many days led to a large proportion of our school community experiencing a very successful hangi on Thursday. An authentic learning experience that the children will remember for a long time to come. Special thanks to the team of staff members, led by Paul Armitage and Claire Peacock- Price, who had the desire and drive to make this happen.

Along-side learning about the hangi, many classes have also been focusing on Matariki (the maori new year).  Matariki is the Māori name for the cluster of seven stars that rises in mid-winter and for many, it heralds the start of a new year. Matariki literally means the ‘eyes of god’ (mata ariki) or ‘little eyes’ (mata riki).  For 2018, June 7 is listed as the day that Matariki sets and July 6 – 9 as the rising, which is when you can see Matariki just above the horizon before the sun comes up.

Matariki and the hangi have provided the ideal opportunity for us to explore with the children the ways that our lives are shaped by our environment and by natural events that occur all around us, and how communities pass on and sustain aspects of their culture.

Linc-ed Parent Information Session
Our final parent information session to introduce you to our new Reading, Writing and Mathematics Progress and Achievement Frameworks will be held tomorrow at 2.30pm in the staffroom.

During this session we will also assist you with how you can access and understand your child’s progress in our cloud-based reporting system, LincEd.  The session will run for approximately 20 minutes.

Reading Report
The Reading curriculum report was presented at the most recent Board of Trustees meeting by Anna Schmidli and I. The report provides a broad picture of reading achievement at Elmwood. Based on data collected for the first half of this year we were able to report the following;

  • 88% of children from Y2-3 are reading at or above their chronological age.
  • 76% of children from Y4-6 are reading at or above the Term 1 New Zealand mean.
  • Students who are below the expected level have been identified, and are being catered for in class and/or through our learning support programmes.

This data enables us to identify areas of need within our school population, both for enrichment and extension, and provides us with direction for future teaching and learning programmes.

As can be seen from the data above, Elmwood Normal School has very effective reading programmes in place that caters for all our learners.

St Margaret’s College Production – Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland
On Monday 2 July, the Year 3 – 6 children have the opportunity to be the audience for the matinee performance of St Margaret’s College Junior School Production ‘Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland’.   The production has a cast of over 200 girls from Year 1 – 13 who will all sing and dance and act in this multi-media production.

We will be walking to the Charles Luney Auditorium at St Margaret’s College, leaving school at 10.30am and returning by 1pm. There is no cost involved in this trip. Your classroom teacher will be in touch with you with more details about this event.

Jill Evans

5 June 2018

Environment and Sustainability
Today marks the beginning of our new trimester school-wide focus: Environment and Sustainability. Over the next 10 weeks the children will be exploring one of the following key concepts:

  • Our choices have an impact on living things and planet Earth
  • We all have responsibility for the future of our place and environment.
  • Our environment has been shaped over many thousands of years.
  • Living things constantly adapt so that they can get and use energy and materials in better ways.

What better way to kick this learning off than by recognising World Environment Day and Arbor Day which fall on the same day every year in New Zealand … today, the 5th of June.

Arbor Day
The first documented arbor plantation festival in the world was organised by the Mayor of the Spanish village of Mondoñedo in 1594. New Zealand’s first Arbor Day planting was in 1890 at Greytown, in the Wairarapa. Over the next couple of weeks several classes will work together to plant new shrubs and grasses around the school. Landscape Designer Sandy MacRae will be helping us enhance our school environment.

World Environment Day
WED is the United Nation’s principal vehicle for encouraging awareness and action for the protection of our environment. The theme for 2018 is beating plastic pollution. Some of the classes will be focusing in on this real life problem over the next few weeks. Here is a short poem to get us thinking about this global pollution issue.

http://worldenvironmentday.global/

Jill Evans
Deputy Principal

28 May 2018

Ehara taku toa, he takitahi, he toa takitina:  Not the work of one but the work of many.

This week sees the culmination of our ten-week, school-wide Social Sciences inquiry focusing on `Communities’.  Over the next few days the children will engage with their local and global communities in various ways.

We began today by inviting members of our whanau into our school community.  I think we can all agree that extended family and close family friends can engender a tremendous addition to the upbringing of children, often providing a selfless support system.  Examples of such connections flowed through the classrooms this morning when over 300 grandparents and special friends came to share in the children’s learning. The children were fully cosseted in admiration and pride due to the close relationships they had with their visitors.

On Wednesday, a large number of our Year 6 students will attend the annual National Young Leaders day. This inspirational event aims to develop student leadership and to equip our most senior students with the skills and values to lead well and make a difference as global citizens in communities beyond their own school gates.

We conclude the week by merging the Arts and Social Sciences together with a performance by “Wala”.  Children will experience the warmth, joy and explosive energy of song and dance from a community quite different to their own – Ghana, West Africa.

Please enjoy photos of these events on our school Facebook page.

 

Jill Evans
Deputy Principal

21 May 2018

Grandparents/Special Friends Morning
Grandparents/Special friends morning is just around the corner. Next Monday 28 May the children and staff would like to warmly welcome grandparents and/or special friends to school from 9.00am-10.00am. During this time the children will share their learning in their classroom. This will be followed by morning tea in the auditorium from 10.00am-10.30am.

For catering purposes, we require numbers attending.  Hopefully by now you have returned the notice that your child received to the school office stating the number of grandparents/special friends who will be attending.

We look forward to welcoming our special visitors to school.

Jill Evans
Deputy Principal

14 May 2018

Bully-free NZ Week
This week is Bully-free NZ week. The key message behind 2018 Bully-free NZ Week is “Let’s talk about it” which encourages talk about bullying prevention within communities. Schools and workplaces that encourage respect, celebrate difference, and promote positive relationships make it difficult for bullying behaviour to be tolerated.

Here at Elmwood we aim to provide a positive environment in which each child is respected and his/her rights to learn and play are encouraged and protected. As I mentioned in an earlier newsletter this year, we have five behaviour goals based around our school values, that underpin our Growing Great Citizens Programme. They exist to encourage  students to “do the right thing.” These goals are outlined in the image below.

Pink shirt day, held annually by the Mental Health Foundation, celebrates diversity and supports schools to prevent bullying and be a safe place for all students. Elmwood will be supporting this movement.  This Thursday 17th May, the children are invited to wear a pink shirt or another piece of pink clothing to support this cause and bring a gold coin donation.

More information about how you can support a Bully-free Aotearoa can be found on the following website.  https://www.bullyingfree.nz/

Learning Support Meeting
A parent meeting will be held this Wednesday 16th May for parents of children who attend our Learning Support programme. Come along to hear about the interesting range of programmes we run and to meet our wonderful team of dedicated educators.

Jill Evans
Deputy Principal

7 May 2018

Assessment and Reporting post National Standards
Further to my message last week, here are the details of the parent information sessions we will be running to introduce you to our new Reading, Writing and Mathematics Progress and Achievement Frameworks.

During this session we will also assist you with how you can access and understand your child’s progress in our cloud-based reporting system, LincEd.

The sessions will be in the staffroom and will run for approximately 20 minutes.
Thursday 10th May –  8.30am, 5.30pm
Monday 21st May – 9.00am,  5.30pm.

Grandparents/Special Friends Day
On Monday 28 May, the children and staff would like to warmly welcome grandparents and/or special friends to school from 9.00am-10.00am. During this time the children will share their learning in their classroom. This will be followed by morning tea in the auditorium from 10.00am-10.30am.

For catering purposes, we require numbers attending.  Please return the notice that your child received on Friday (with the number of grandparents/special friends who will be attending) to the school office by Friday 25 May.  

We look forward to welcoming our special visitors to school.

Learning Support Meeting
A parent meeting will be held on Wednesday 16 May for parents of children who attend our Learning Support programme. Come along to hear about the interesting range of programmes we run and to meet our wonderful team of dedicated educators.

Jill Evans
Deputy Principal

30 April 2018

Assessment and Reporting post National Standards

At Elmwood we pride ourselves in being up-to-date with best practices for teaching and learning programmes and assessment. We continue to ensure that what is best for your child’s academic achievement, social and emotional well-being is at the centre of every decision we make.

As you are well aware the system with which we have been required to assess and report for the past 10 years (National Standards) have been scrapped. At Elmwood we have taken this opportunity to align our assessment and reporting back with the existing New Zealand Curriculum.

The teachers committed a vast amount of their time last term to developing a new school-wide framework for assessing progress and achievement across the curriculum. The Elmwood Normal School Reading, Writing and Mathematics progression-based frameworks were shared with the Board of Trustees late last term, who endorse this practice.

We will be incorporating this new framework into our cloud-based reporting system, LincEd. Once we have the complete system up and running as we want it, we will run information sessions to introduce the frameworks to you. Look out for information regarding dates for these sessions in next weeks newsletter.

Jill Evans
Deputy Principal

9 April 2018

Tradition vs future-focused innovation: which way to go?
We constantly hear about the continuous struggle educational institutions have with tradition versus future-focused innovation – no more so than here in post-quake Canterbury. Two recent events have reminded me that the two can be embraced and sit comfortably together, honouring what part each has to play in creating a deep, rich education for our tamariki.

On Friday and Saturday, along with over 300 delegates from Early Childhood to High School sectors, members of the Elmwood staff attended an inspiring conference on Positive Education and Wellbeing.  National and international speakers shared research about the importance of teaching students about character strengths, mindfulness, and coaching mental fitness in our schools as much as we do physical fitness – new innovative thinking for many schools.

Whilst sitting there, up on my phone popped a photo of the Junior school’s creative tribute to the ANZAC heroes they had been learning about that morning.  It reminded me of the precious treasure we have at our school – the War Memorial erected in memory of the 154 former Elmwood students who served during the First World War.   How vital mental fitness and strength of character must have been for these young men and women in all that they had to endure. What life-long lessons can we can learn from their experiences?

Last week I had the honour of meeting several members of the Espiner family. All Elmwood ex-pupils, they were taking their dear eldest brother Harry (who was visiting from England) around Christchurch in an attempt to restore some of his rapidly fading memory.  How proud Harry was as he stood beside the Dux board – a title bestowed on his brother Donald in 1941 and on himself in 1942.  He fondly remembered time spent at the school pool, and recognised the traditional school shield which still holds pride of place above the old main entrance to the school (beside Room 15).  The historic photo wall in the corridor behind the school library also caught his attention.

How grateful we all were in that moment, that the earthquakes had not destroyed these precious artifacts and that the War Memorial had been repaired. The school’s values displayed around the school were noticed and admired, and they all recalled how this values-based tradition existed in their days at Elmwood too… Take the time to google Harry Espiner to see what an innovative change-maker he has been in his life-time.

Governments will continue to change, and with them schools will continue to be required to alter their practices and procedures, however our history, traditions and values can never be taken away from us.  

Teaching our children, with one eye clearly on preparing them for the future and what that may hold for them, and with the other eye on the past, honouring and learning from the valuable impact those that have been here before us have on our lives today, is a sure pathway to preparing our children to be the change-makers and heroes of the future.

`Lest we forget.’

Elmwood School War memorial, unveiled 26 February 1921,
Restored by the Merivale Precinct Society and the school in 2012.

26 March 2018

“Good manners will open doors that the best education cannot.” Clarence Thomas

Children will respond to the standards that are set for them. If we set high levels of behaviour and manners, then the majority of children will rise to them.

At present, we are having a school-wide emphasis on showing respect to adults. We are keeping it simple by encouraging the children to display three basic manners;
– step out of the way and let adults go first
– opening doors for adults
– saying ‘please’ and ‘thank you’

This was mentioned to the children in Celebration Assembly last week. We would appreciate you reinforcing these manners beyond the school gate and please let us know of any chance encounters of these that you come across when you are in the school grounds.

Jill Evans

5 March 2018

Communities – Our Connected World
Ehara taku toa, he takitahi, he toa takitina: Not the work of one but the work of many.

This week marks the beginning of our ten-week, school-wide focus based around the concept of ‘Communities’.  This unit of inquiry integrates the learning area of Social Science with Technology and Health.

The main insights we aim for the children to gain are outlined below. These big ideas (understandings) will vary based on your child’s year level;

  • Healthy communities result from organisation, values and interactions that connect the past, present and future of groups and individuals.
  • People in groups have rights, roles, responsibilities and rules.
  • We live in an interconnected and interdependent global community.
  • People manage resources and make financial and economic choices based on needs and wants. These decisions affect individuals and communities.

Teachers have planned a range of exciting activities to ‘hook’ the children into learning about the local and global communities we live in, how they are connected, and what part we have to play in being global citizens.

We will culminate this unit with a week-long celebration to share our new learning with you all.  Look out for information regarding this next term.

Nga mihi

Jill Evans

26 February 2018

Growing Great Citizens
The children may have been coming home talking about our new positive playground behaviour programme that we launched last week – ‘Growing Great Citizens’. The social and emotional welfare of our students is important, as this provides the foundation for academic success. This incentive aims to provide a happy and safe playground environment at our school by encouraging appropriate and positive behaviour.

Socially intelligent behaviour is viewed as part of a child’s development and therefore is at the core of our behaviour management programme. Five behaviour goals based around our school values have been established to provide a school-wide approach that is proactive rather than reactive. These goals are outlined in the image below.

Children who are seen to be modelling the goals receive a token in the colour of their House group which they deposit into the House containers positioned outside the Music and Art rooms. The tokens are added up and the winning house is announced at each Celebration Assembly.

The children seem to be highly motivated by this programme and excited that they are getting noticed when they are “doing the right thing”.  More details about ‘Growing Great Citizens’ will be available on our school website and Facebook page later this week.

                

Mufti Day – ‘Red and White for Tonga’
Our `Red and White’ mufti day last week raised $700.90. Thank you for  giving so generously to this worthy cause. All proceeds have been donated to the Red Cross appeal for Tonga after the devastating effects of Cyclone Gita.

Nga mihi

Jill Evans

12 February 2018

Thank you for the wonderful turnout at our ‘Meet the Teacher’ evening last week. Having been a parent at Elmwood some years ago now, I can still recall how valuable this event is, not only for meeting the teacher and finding out about the classroom environment but also for building connections with other parents in the classroom. We are very conscious as a school of the importance of ensuring that clear channels of communication exist, enabling everyone (you and your children, the teachers, support staff and leadership team) to be well informed. If you were unable to attend this event please get in touch with your child’s teacher so that information can be shared with you.

Once again, I welcome you to an exciting year and thank you in advance for your role as parents in strengthening our home school relationship through nurturing positive, collaborative and productive relationships in order to make 2018 a great and successful year for our school.  

Nga mihi

Jill Evans

5 February 2018

Our School Values – a change
As the majority of you will know, for several years now we have had five school values as an integral part of everyday teaching and learning at our school. After receiving a well-thought out, well researched request from our pupil-led School Council late last year we have decided to embed the value of Empathy within an alternative value – Respect (whakaute).  Both the school council representatives and the teachers agree that respect better encompasses actions of care, concern and consideration for people, property and our environment. So our five school values which are an integral part of everyday teaching and learning at Elmwood are; `Creativity, Collaboration, Respect, Independence and Excellence’.

We also took this request for change as an opportunity to review the way the school values are visually presented and have come up with a new visual representation of our five school values. Look out for these displayed around the classrooms next time you are in the school. You can also see them on our school Facebook page.

We encourage you to talk to your children about what each value (that we value so highly) means to them and how the values help them to `strive to be the best that they can be’.

Nga mihi

Jill Evans

30 January 2018

Welcome

I am pleased to warmly welcome each and every one of our new and returning families to Elmwood. It has been a wonderful, rather hot summer for most of New Zealand and I certainly hope you all managed to find some way to enjoy the beautiful weather. We are looking forward to your well-rested children returning and having a productive start to their new academic year.

We are starting the new year with a fantastic team of teachers who have over the past fortnight been demonstrating their commitment to their profession by coming in to the school to create welcoming learning environments for the children, and have team and sub-committee meetings.

In addition to this, for the past two days we have had professional development in order to continue to strengthen our skills in presenting the best teaching and learning environments possible for the children.

Sue Graham from the University of Canterbury continued our two-year PD focus on Mathematics.  Sue provided us with a wealth of new understandings and practical ideas to incorporate into our Maths programmes.

We also began looking into our new school-wide focus, Positive Education. Our Teachers’ only day session looked at the importance of coaching the children in emotional intelligence and building their self-efficacy. The session highlighted the importance of both of these attributes in order for young children, teenagers and adults to find happiness and success.

As we continue to progress through this learning we will aim to run parent education sessions on Positive Education.

Nga mihi

Jill Evans

11 December 2017

Over the past week our children have been involved in a wide range of events leading into the festive season. Every day I am reminded of the excitement of Christmas.  The sound of Christmas carols drift through my office window being sung by numerous groups or performed by the school orchestra, candy canes and cards adorn my desk and I have lost count of the number of crazy Christmas hats I have seen around the school.  Some of the children even had the opportunity to sit in `Santa’s sleigh’ from the New Zealand `Kiwi Christmas’ movie. Remember to check out our school Facebook page to see photos of some of these events.

It is such a pleasure to see our school getting involved in activities that support the wider Christchurch community. Last week four Year 5 and 6 students held a cake stall and raised an impressive $343.10 for the SPCA. The Junior School children delighted members of the public by spreading Christmas cheer down at Merivale Mall and Rooms 7, 8 and 9 visited Nurse Maude.

A final opportunity for our Elmwood community to support others will be happening tomorrow with a mufti day. We ask for the children to bring nonperishable food item (instead of money) to donate to the Salvation Army. Please give generously to this very worthwhile cause.

With this being the last newsletter of the year, may I wish you all a very merry Christmas and a wonderful summer break.

Ngā manaakitanga.

Jill Evans

4 December 2017

Congratulations
Last Monday three of our teachers attended the Graduation Ceremony for completing their provisional certification period. Charlotte Wilson, Laura Richardson and Sarah Argyle have all undertaken two full years of supervision and have now gained their full registration. This means that in most cases, a teacher will have spent five or six years (including university study) completing the process. This shows true dedication and passion for their chosen vocation. We congratulate them for their effort and commitment, and also that of their tutor teachers who have dedicated additional time to mentoring them for the past two years. Well done Laura, Sarah and Charlotte.

ENSCA Family Fun Day
What a fabulous day the Family Fun Day was yesterday. The fundraising focus at events such as these sit secondary to the importance of bringing the school community together and celebrating the end of another fun and successful year at Elmwood. Sincere thanks to ENSCA for the huge effort that went on behind the scenes in the build up to the day, at the event itself and then the massive clean up after the event!

Performance Week
I am looking forward to watching the various performance groups over the final two weeks of the year starting with the Junior Kapa Haka this evening, the Class and After School Dance Performances on Tuesday, the combined Choir and Senior Kapa Haka Concert on Thursday and finishing up next week with Room 20’s class concert and the Orchestra Soiree on Tuesday.

These events are a time for parents and teachers to feel proud of all the hours of practice and effort that has gone into getting them to be ‘performance ready.’ It is times such as these that our school values of Creativity, Collaboration and Excellence shine through in our tamariki and their kaiako.

Jill

27 November 2017

Mufti Day
Please remember to support our Mufti Day this Thursday – Jandal Day.  All proceeds will be going to Surf Lifesaving New Zealand, an extremely worthwhile cause . The Year 3 children will be benefiting next week from the surf lifesavers’ services to the community when attending the Beach Education programmes. I have attached a link to the website to give you more information about what they do.  http://www.slsnz.org.nz/

Top Town
The weather looks promising for our long-awaited Top Town Day this Thursday.  This annual event is a highlight in the school calendar with the question “When is Top Town happening?” being asked many times, sometime right from the beginning of Term 4!

All Year 4-6 children participate in at least two events during the morning. Fun is the name of the game. The House Captains play a major role on the day organising the participants into the events. The aim is to build collaboration, camaraderie and a sense of pride within the school-wide House groups.

It is a wonderful day for all involved, we hope you can pop down to see some of the fun!

Jill

20 November 2017

This week, when preparing for the Year 6 graduation, I found myself reflecting on how far the 2017 graduates (many of whom I taught in Year 4) had come. In the short time I have been back at Elmwood I have seen many opportunities provided for these students, and all the children in the school, to experience success; ICAS exams, Athletics sports days, Traffic Safety team training, team sports competitions and when proudly sharing their personal reading and writing achievements with Mr Armitage and I.  As the famous Brazilian footballer, Pele once said …

“Success is no accident.  It is hard work, perseverance, learning, studying,
sacrifice and most of all, love of what you are doing or learning to do.”

Tino pai rawa atu, tamariki!

Traffic Safety Team

With the Year 6 students away on school camp this week, Year 5 students are patrolling the school road crossings this week. They have all passed their Road Patrol training in preparation for 2018.  Please be mindful of this when you are driving through or crossing at the Kea crossings.

Jill

13 November 2017

St Margaret’s College Production – Museum Alive
On Thursday 23 November, the Year 3 – 6 children have the opportunity to be the audience for the matinee performance of St Margaret’s College Junior School Production `Museum Alive’.   Having been involved in their own school-wide production this year, this is a great opportunity for the children to reflect on their own performance whilst enjoying a show about a trip to a museum based in the year 2067!

We will be walking to St Margaret’s College, leaving school at 10.30am and returning by 1pm. There is no cost involved in this trip. Your classroom teacher will be in touch with you with more details about this event.

North Zone Athletics Competition
Congratulations to all the children who competed at the North Zone Athletic Competition last Thursday.  They represented Elmwood very well displaying a competitive nature whilst showing respect towards the athletes from other schools and the officials.  Children who have made it through to the Canterbury championships will be notified once we receive the official results.

A reminder
Thank you for being proactive about coming into the office to sign your child out when they have to leave school for an appointment. Please remember it is important to let both your child’s teacher and the office know on these occasions.

Jill

6 November 2017

Character Strengths
For those of you that were able to attend our Celebration Assembly on Friday you would have had the opportunity to hear Room 1 share their inspiring learning based around their character strengths. This will continue to be a school-wide focus, as we consider it is important to coach the children to recognise what character strengths they have and how they can use these to live their best lives.

Global research over recent years has looked into what learners need to succeed in an unpredictable, rapidly changing world, and right alongside ‘knowledge’ and `skills’ sits `character’. I have attached a diagram that better explains the four dimensions of education that are necessary for enabling “today’s learners to be successful in tomorrow’s world.” (Incidentally, did you know that is our school’s mission statement?)

ICAS Results
Well done to all the children who sat ICAS exams this year. Congratulations to the following students who achieved awards for ICAS English and Maths at Celebration Assembly last Friday.

English
High Distinction – Maya Chiron – Year 4
Distinction  – Isobel Hurren – Year 3, Mathankie Ealasukanthan -Year 5, Harry Woods – Year 3, Trelise McEwan – Year 5, Luca Mundy – Year 4, Greta Mazey – Year 5, Neve Parish – Year 4,  Anna Wyn-Harris – Year 6, Indie Lewis – Year 6, Madeleine Eastgate – Year 6, Lara Montgomery – Year 6

Mathematics
High Distinction – Ben Harkerss – Year 5
Distinction – Matthew Burton-Lyall – Year 3, Gus Spillane – Year 4, Cameron Gane – Year 3,  Sneha Datla – Year 4, Veeraj Sidhu – Year 3, 3, Maya Chiron – Year 4, Harry Woods – Year 3, Millie Sefton – Year 5, Samuel Buchan – Year 4, Isabella Donald – Year 6, Aidan Daly – Year 4, Madeleine Eastgate – Year 6, Mathankie Ealasukanthan – Year 5

Jill

30 October 2017

Year 4 – 6 Athletic Sports Results
Please click on the following link to view the results of our Year 4-6 Athletics Sports held last week Athletics Results 2017.

Congratulations to all the children who competed and well done to the children who are representing Elmwood at the North Zones Athletics Sports next Wednesday.

The weather looks wonderful for our Junior School Athletic Sports tomorrow.  We would love to see you there.

Jill Evans

24 October 2017

Experiences that encourage us to step outside our comfort zone and challenge us to dig deep and push through when things are tough, enable us to grow in ways that no amount of textbook or internet reading will ever do.  Last week while attending the Year 4 camp I saw a range of opportunities provided for the children to take on such challenges, reminding me of how worthwhile school camps are.  

Today at the Year 4-6 Athletics sports I had the opportunity to observe the range of emotions involved in the brief, relatively harmless experience of jumping the high jump bar. Yes, there was the participant themselves who did or did not succeed, however it was the bystander’s reactions that really struck a chord with me and made me see what is at the heart of the culture that exists at Elmwood.  The words of encouragement and support they gave each other, the empathy they felt for the participant when the bar toppled off, the jubilation from the crowd when the bar stayed steady and most of all, the pats on backs between the final two or three contestants after the event, regardless of their final placing. It is a wonderful feeling to be part of such a positive, supportive school community.

Special thanks to those parents who took time out from their busy schedules to help out on the Year 4 and 5 school camp and those that came to support the children today. I am looking forward to attending the Junior Athletics next week.

Jill Evans

16 October 2017

It is wonderful to be part of the Elmwood community again. I would like to thank those of you who have taken the time to welcome me back. For others who don’t yet know me I am looking forward to meeting you.   There are going to be  numerous school events coming up over the next nine weeks – starting with both the senior and junior school athletics sports days, Year 4 & 5 Camps and the school choir who will be performing at the Christchurch Schools’ Music Festival. Please don’t hesitate to come up and introduce yourself to me at these events or around the school grounds.  

The main goal I have this term is to spend time reconnecting with the children who I already know and getting to know those that I don’t.  I am looking forward to spending time in the classrooms observing all the great learning that is happening.

Nga mihi

Jill Evans

18 September 2017

School Disco
A big thank you to everyone for your support for the school Disco last week.  The children had a great time and it was a huge success.  

ENSCA Art Auction
We look forward to the ENSCA Art Auction this Friday evening which will be a fantastic event to attend.   A great deal of work has gone into this from ENSCA.    The children have done a wonderful job working on their art for this event and we are very appreciative of all the efforts from teachers, ENSCA and others involved.  We look forward to seeing you there.  Details to purchase tickets are below in the ENSCA Notice. 

Sandra, Meg and Caro

11 September 2017

ICAS Spelling Awards
Congratulations to the following students who received awards for ICAS Spelling at our recent Celebration Assembly.  A special thank you to the parents who could come.

DISTINCTION:  Trelise McEwan    Lydia  Felton   Sneha Datla  
HIGH  DISTINCTION:  Luca Mundy

Well done to all the children who sat this paper in Term 2.  Congratulations to you all.

21 August 2017

This week we want to share a piece of writing from a year 6 student. Every Friday the students in room 18 reflect on their work, writing about their challenges and successes at school. These reflections are across the curriculum and include academic, sport, the arts and social.

Mac’s writing embodies the values that are a fundamental part of everyday teaching and learning at Elmwood. His writing serves as a reminder that we are a community that is strongly connected, and that our school culture has a deep sense of ‘pumanawatanga’ (morale, tone, beating heart).

‘When I was at the Isaac Theatre Royal for our production, I was amazed when we did a haka. I thought we were a family singing out aloud. I felt like there was a connection running through our bodies when we were working in a group singing and doing actions. I felt relieved when we had finished our performance and proud of our Kapahaka whanau.’

Our school values are:
Excellence/ Hiranga – we strive to do our best
Creativity/Auahatanga – we think in innovative ways
Empathy/Aroha – we respect and value others
Collaboration/Mahi tahi – we work with others to create inspiring learning
Independence/Motuhake – we take responsibility for our own learning

(Elmwood Normal School Curriculum, 2016-2017)

There is a lot to be proud of at Elmwood Normal School.  We look forward to Grandparents’ Day this Friday where we can share our love of learning.

Caro, Sandra and Megan

07 August 2017

Structure of DP Days
Monday – Caro
Wednesday – Meg
Thursday – Sandra
Friday – shared

ICAS Science Awards:
Congratulations to the following students who achieved awards for ICAS Science at Celebration Assembly last Friday. A special thank you to the parents who could come.
DISTINCTION:  Ayshanie Ayingaran,  Liam Singer, Maya Chiron, Jackson Grace, Flynn Lowrey-Brown, Millie Sefton, Morgan Clancy,  Anna Wyn-Harris,  Zoe Crisp-Hughes (in absentia).
HIGH  DISTINCTION:  Samuel Buchan
Well done to all the children who sat this paper in Term 2.  Congratulations to you all.

Linc-Ed
Hopefully by now you have been able to access and share your child’s online report through Linc-Ed.  This platform will enable us to provide a richness of reporting moving forward eg photos, videos, samples of work.  The real value of any reporting comes from the learning conversations between you and your child celebrating the successes and identifying the next learning steps.  Now our cloud-based reporting is live you will receive an email notification each time there is a new post about your child’s learning. You will receive, on average, 3-4 notifications per term.  Should you have any issues with logging in or accessing the Linc-Ed portal please see your child’s teacher in the first instance.

Communication
If required, please contact us throughout this term via email (addresses below) or phone (3557192 ext 704).

Caro, Meg and Sandra
caros@elmwood.school.nz
meganf@elmwood.school.nz
sandraj@elmwood.school.nz

03 July 2017

Dear Parents

Wow, what an amazing 18months I have had.  I am truly sad to be leaving such a wonderful school and so many amazing students, parents and teachers.  I have made some very special connections at Elmwood and I will never forget these.  I really hope that our paths will cross again in the future and feel free to pop into Omihi School if you are ever passing by to go to Kaikoura or further north when the road opens.  My new school email will be principal@omihi.school.nz if you need to get in touch for any reason.

Guest speakers
Thank you to the parents who came along to listen to our speakers last week.  If you weren’t able to be there, here are their presentations.  

Melanie Curry – ADD/ADHD/Autism course

Melanie Curry Resources

Sue Graham – Maths
 

Maree

26 June 2017

Hi Parents

Production tickets
These go on sale this Wednesday, 28th June at 9am at www.ticketek.co.nz.  The eldest child in the family will be bringing a code home today that you will need to use when you purchase the tickets.  This will give you up to 3 tickets.  If the code is misplaced, you can contact the office on Tuesday to find out what it is.  All extra tickets will be for sale after the school holidays.

Linc-ed
The reports will be going live this Friday at 12pm.  You will be able to see the National Standards, goals, effort and comments for reading, writing, maths as well as a general comment covering some of the other learning areas.  Please make sure you try and log in before Friday so you can come and see us if there are any issues.  We will be doing a bulk publish, so you won’t receive an email, you will just need to log in after 12pm.  From next term when teacher’s publish their own posts you will receive an automatically generated email to tell you a comment is there.

Parent sessions
We would love to see you at the following sessions:

Wednesday 28th June, 9am in the Staffroom
Melanie Curry, talking about Autism/ADD/ADHD

Friday 30th June, 10am in the Staffroom
Maths – Sue Graham and Maree Lucas

Maree

19 June 2017

Hi Parents

Linc-ed Reporting
On Wednesday you will all be sent an email with instructions of how to get a login code for Linc-ed.  Once you receive this email, you need to follow the instructions, which will then set up a login and password.  There is a drop in session on Friday 23rd June from 10-10.30am in the staffroom if you need any help.

All reports are going live on Friday 30th June at midday.  You must have your login and password sorted in order to see your child’s report.

Maree

06 June 2017

Dear Parents

Catherine Gallagher – Anxiety in Children
Thank you to all the parents that came along and supported this talk.  If you weren’t able to make it, here are her handouts.
There is a resource list at the end of the powerpoint.

Anxiety-Elmwood

Anxiety Psychoeducation Sheet

ICAS tests
The dates for the ICAS tests are as follows.  The tests will be at 9.15am on those days.  If children are away on that day, they will be unable to sit it at a later date.
Teachers have a list of which children have signed up for each test.
Writing – Tuesday 13th June
Spelling – Wednesday 14th June
English – Tuesday 1 August
Mathematics – Tuesday 15th August

Maree

22 May 2017

Hi everyone

Gymnastics
If your child would like to enter in any of the gymnastics competitions coming up, please email mareeh@elmwood.school.nz by Thursday 25th May.  The categories are:
Artistic Recreation – 14 June
Artistic Competitive – 14 June
Rhythmic – 19 June
Parents need to get the children there on the day.  Children need to be a minimum of 8 years old on 1/1/17.

Maree

15 May 2017

Hi everyone

We have a number of parent information sessions this term.  I thought I would highlight them again in case you are interested in coming along.

Linc-ed Information
Due to lack of registrations we are cancelling tonights Linc-ed information session.  There will still be one this Friday at 10am in the staffroom if you want to find out more.  Or feel free to have a look at the following link for more info.

Linc-ed introduction for parents

Catherine Gallagher – Monday 22nd May, 7pm in auditorium
Catherine Gallagher is a Clinical Psychologist.  She is going to talk to parents about anxiety in children.

Autism, ADD, ADHD talk – Wednesday 28th June, 9am in staffroom
Melanie Curry from Optimum Learning is Dyslexia Facilitator & Autism Facilitator/Coach.  She is coming in to talk to parents about  Autism, ADD/ADHD, and those children not meeting childhood development milestones.

Mixed ability Maths – Friday 30th June, 10am in staffroom
We have Sue Graham who is a teacher, former Principal and Maths advisor working with our staff.  She is running whole staff professional development around mixed ability maths.  As we are moving away from only using ability based maths groups, this is a great opportunity for staff to have some PD on it.  Sue will be working in some of our classes with students, modelling lessons and teaching alongside some of our teachers, as well as sharing research and resources.

Please email me to register for any of these sessions – mareeh@elmwood.school.nz.

Maree

Linc-ed Reporting

Last year we began implementing a new Student Management System called Linc-ed.  This is a cloud-based system that was designed by Paul Sibson when he was Principal at Fendalton School.  It is a tool we use for attendance, storing information and data on students, and also reporting to parents electronically.

This year we will be changing the way we are reporting on our students.   Instead of giving out a written report twice a year, we will be doing ‘real time’ reporting.  Teachers, teaching assistants and support staff will be posting information about your child through the parent portal on Linc-ed and you will receive this instantly via email, from the end of term 2.   Children will also have the opportunity to post about their learning on Linc-ed.

Our timeline for implementation this term is as follows:
● Monday 19 June – Email sent to all parents / caregivers giving information and access to the Linc-ed  portal.
● Friday 23rd June, 10am in the staffroom – Drop in session for questions or help with using Linc-ed
● Friday 30 June, 11:00am – Reporting goes live to parents.

In the meantime we suggest you watch the video clip below to begin building an understanding of Linc-ed and how it will support us in better reporting student progress to parents.

Linc-ed introduction for parents

If you have further questions after watching the clip, then please come along to one of following sessions:

Information on Linc-ed
Friday 19th May, 10am in the staffroom

We have begun a Question and Answer forum as a result of feedback from our parent focus group.  These may be helpful in answering some of the initial questions you might have:

Linc-ed Q&A

Paul and Maree

08 May 2017

Hi everyone

We have a number of parent information sessions this term.  I thought I would highlight them again in case you are interested in coming along.

There are a few new initiatives in the school this year, so it would be great to be able to share more about these. 

Linc-ed Reporting System – Monday 15th May, 6pm in staffroom or Friday 19th May 10am in staffroom.
As we highlighted in our newsletter last week, we are moving onto a cloud based reporting system and are using a very exciting new programme called Linc-ed.

Catherine Gallagher – Monday 22nd May, 7pm in auditorium
Catherine Gallagher is a Clinical Psychologist.  She is going to talk to parents about anxiety in children.

Autism, ADD, ADHD talk – Wednesday 28th June, 9am in staffroom
Melanie Curry from Optimum Learning is Dyslexia Facilitator & Autism Facilitator/Coach.  She is coming in to talk to parents about  Autism, ADD/ADHD, and those children not meeting childhood development milestones.

Mixed ability Maths – Friday 30th June, 10am in staffroom
We have Sue Graham who is a teacher, former Principal and Maths advisor working with our staff.  She is running whole staff professional development around mixed ability maths.  As we are moving away from only using ability based maths groups, this is a great opportunity for staff to have some PD on it.  Sue will be working in some of our classes with students, modelling lessons and teaching alongside some of our teachers, as well as sharing research and resources.

Please email me to register for any of these sessions – mareeh@elmwood.school.nz.

Clubs Term 2 – Running club started last week and will run for 4 weeks.  The Lunchtime clubs are starting up again this week.  There is a new Calligraphy club that will be starting on Thursday this week.  Here is the term 2 clubs timetable. Term 2 Lunchtime Club Timetable

Maree

01 May 2017

Hi everyone

Welcome back to term 2.  I hope you had the chance to have some family time over the holidays or go on some exciting adventures, or just have a rest!  George and I had a lovely few days away in Akaroa and managed to get some kayaking and biking in.  I definitely feel recharged and ready to go again for term 2.  Plus we’re on the countdown to our wedding, which is now only 5 weeks away, so it’s an exciting term all round!

I’ve talked to a number of children today and it’s great to see them so excited about coming back to school.  They are definitely keen to see their teachers and ready to learn.

Lunchtime clubs are starting up again for term 2.  Running club will be starting this Wednesday for 4 weeks.  All other clubs are starting in week 2.  Here is the term 2 clubs timetable. Term 2 Lunchtime Club Timetable

Catherine Gallagher – Monday 22 May at 7.00pm in the Auditorium
Catherine Gallagher is a Clinical Psychologist.  We are bringing her in to talk to parents about anxiety in children.  I have heard her speak before and she has some great advice, ideas and strategies on how to help our children.
Please email me if you would like to come – mareeh@elmwood.school.nz

Maree

10 April 2017

Hi everyone

Cross Country
Congratulations to all the children who participated in the Cross Country Championship Races.  Here are our top 20 finishes.  The children highlighted are eligible to enter zones.

Catherine Gallagher – Monday 22 May at 7.00pm in the Auditorium
Catherine Gallagher is a Clinical Psychologist.  We are bringing her in to talk to parents about anxiety in children.  I have heard her speak before and she has some great advice, ideas and strategies on how to help our children.
Please email me if you would like to come – mareeh@elmwood.school.nz

03 April 2017

Hi everyone

Catherine Gallagher – Monday 22 May at 7.00pm in the Auditorium
Catherine Gallagher is a Clinical Psychologist.  We are bringing her in to talk to parents about anxiety in children.  I have heard her speak before and she has some great advice, ideas and strategies on how to help our children.
Please email me if you would like to come – mareeh@elmwood.school.nz

Running club
There is no running club this week due to the Cross Country.  The last one for the term will be next Wednesday.

Cross Country
We will put a message on the Facebook page and school website at 8am on Wednesday morning to let you know if the cross country is still on.

Maree

27 March 2017

Hi everyone

ICAS
Due to copyright I can’t put the ICAS papers on our website.  But here is a link to practise ones that you can purchase online: https://www.eaa.unsw.edu.au/icas/download-practice-questions

Nathan Wallis
Thank you to all the parents that came to see Nathan Wallis on Monday.  He is such a brilliant speaker and definitely very thought provoking.  We have had some great discussions amongst teachers and parents since his talk.  For those that weren’t able to come, here are a few podcasts of Nathan.  There is also one for the adolescent brain which I know some parents were interested in.
Nathan Wallis – Parenting
Nathan Wallis – what 3-7 year olds need to learn
Nathan Wallis – Understanding the adolescent brain

Catherine Gallagher – Monday 22 May at 7.00pm in the Auditorium
Catherine Gallagher is a Clinical Psychologist.  We are bringing her in to talk to parents about anxiety in children.  I have heard her speak before and she has some great advice, ideas and strategies on how to help our children.
Please email me if you would like to come – mareeh@elmwood.school.nz

Swimming Zones
Well done to all the children who represented Elmwood and competed in the zones swimming sports.  Please click on the following link to view the results 2017 Zone Swimming Sports Results
Congratulations to all the children who competed and well done to the following children who are representing North Zone at the Canterbury Swimming Champs:

  • Lulu Inglis
  • Sam Gamble
  • Robbie Carrell
  • Maike Loof
  • Trelise McEwan
  • Isabella Donald

Running Club
If you are entering the ‘Muddy Good Run race’, please let me know. I know of one family entering. If there are more, we can send the Elmwood flag so you can all meet up together.  

Maree

20 March 2017

Hi everyone

Running Club
Running club is going really well. It’s great to see children pushing themselves and trying hard to beat their personal best. New children and parents are always welcome.
I saw this event and thought some families may be interested in entering – http://www.muddygoodrun.co.nz/Christchurch/. I’d love to see photos if you do 🙂

ICAS
Please remember to get your entries in by this Friday. I have scanned some previous ICAS papers that you can use for practise, so will put those on the website this week under ‘Learning’.

Year 1-6 Cross Country
We would love to see parents/grandparents/friends/neighbours/supporters at our Whole School Cross Country next week. It is on Wednesday 29th Marchat 10.00am at Elmwood Park.
Order of races
1. Championship Boys (3 laps)
2. Championship Girls (3 laps)
3. Year 1 Boys (1 lap)
4. Year 1 Girls (1 lap)
5. Year 2 Boys (1 lap)
6. Year 2 Girls (1 lap)
7. Year 3 Boys (1 lap)
8. Year 3 Girls (1 lap)
9. Year 4 Boys (1 laps)
10. Year 4 Girls (1 laps)
11. Year 5 Boys (1 laps)
12. Year 5 Girls (1 laps)
13. Year 6 Boys (1 laps)
14. Year 6 Girls (1 laps)

Maree

13 March 2017

Hi everyone

Swimming
Congratulations and good luck to those children who are representing Elmwood at the Swimming zones tomorrow.

In the next Celebration Assembly we will be presenting the children who came 1st, 2nd or 3rd in the championship races at our swimming sports with a ribbon.  Parents are more than welcome to come and watch.  It will be on Friday 31st March at 11am.

Ronald McDonald House
Outside of being DP, I run an events company and every year I create a fashion show for charity.  100% of the proceeds go to the Ronald McDonald House.  My twin nieces spent a lot of time in Starship when they were born, so my brother and his wife were lucky enough to stay in the Ronald McDonald House and received amazing support, so it’s very close to home for me.  

To me it is so important to learn to give back, learn how we can help others and learn how we can support other people.  

If you would like to join the support for this cause in any way or just come along and see our lovely children performing on Saturday 01 April, feel free to get in touch with me on mareeh@elmwood.school.nz.

Autism Talk
Robyn from Autism NZ is running a parent session on Thursday 23rd March at 2pm in the staffroom.  All parents are welcome.
If you would like to attend, please email me on mareeh@elmwood.school.nz.

Maree

06 March 2017

Hi everyone

Ronald McDonald House
Outside of being DP, I run an events company and every year I create a fashion show for charity.  100% of the proceeds go to the Ronald McDonald House.  My twin nieces spent a lot of time in Starship when they were born, so my brother and his wife were lucky enough to stay in the Ronald McDonald House and received amazing support, so it’s very close to home for me.  

To me it is so important to learn to give back, learn how we can help others and learn how we can support other people.  

If you would like to join the support for this cause in any way or just come along and see our lovely children performing on Saturday 01 April, feel free to get in touch with me on mareeh@elmwood.school.nz.

ICAS Examinations Entries 2017
Please click on the following link to view the letter and download the entry form for the ICAS examinations for 2017. The closing date for the entries to be put into the posting box in the School Office is Friday 24 March.
ICAS Entry Letter 2017

Swimming sports
Thank you to all the parents that helped and supported our students at the swimming sports last week.  We ran out of time to run the relay competition, so will be doing this in the school pool at lunchtime this Wednesday 8th March.  You are very welcome to come and watch.

The results will be on the sport section of our website today and also on our Facebook page.  Letters have gone out today to those children who are going to zones.  

Autism Talk
Robyn from Autism NZ is running a parent session on Thursday 23rd March at 2pm in the staffroom.  All parents are welcome.
If you would like to attend, please email me on mareeh@elmwood.school.nz.

Grandparents Day
On the morning of Friday 25th August, Elmwood would like to invite grandparents into school.  This is an opportunity for our students to show their grandparents, or significant person in their life, around our school and share some of their learning.    I will send out more details nearer the time.  This is one of my favourite events that schools run.  It’s so special seeing the bond between grandparents and grandchildren.

Maree

20 February 2017

Hi everyone

We have a few things coming up this term that need to be in your diary.  They are on the calendar and here are some further details below:

Autism Talk
Robyn from Autism NZ is running a parent session on Thursday 23rd March at 2pm in the staffroom.  All parents are welcome.
If you would like to attend, please email me on mareeh@elmwood.school.nz.

New Parents morning tea
We would like to invite any new parents to the school to a morning tea on Wednesday 8th March at 9am in the staffroom.  This will be a chance to meet our leadership team and also some members from ENSCA.

Celebrating Success
If your child has done something outside of school that deserves celebrating, feel free to email me the details and a photo and I will share on our school Facebook page.

Maree

13 February 2017

Hi everyone

I caught up with a lot of you last week with my exciting news.  George and I got engaged over Waitangi weekend, so it’s been a very exciting time for us.  I’ve loved sharing the news with the children and have had so many delightful responses, such as ‘Engaged to who??’ and ‘Have you been on a date with him?’.  Very sweet, so thank you for all of your well wishes.

Clubs
The running club went really well last week.  There are a couple of other clubs starting this week:

Year 4-6 Dance club
This term I will be running a dance club for Year 4-6 children.  It starts tomorrow and will be in Room 18 from 12.30-1.00pm every Tuesday.  Boys and girls are welcome.  There will be a boys only dance club later in the year.

Year 1-6 Arts and Crafts club
Thursday lunchtimes in the library from this week.

Maree

31 January 2017

Welcome back!  Hope you have all had a lovely Christmas and New Year.  It’s always nice to get away and have a break so we are refreshed and ready to start the new year.  We were away down south for a couple of weeks biking, kayaking and hiking.  New Zealand is really such a beautiful country!  

During our holiday I had the time to think about my goals for the year.  I think it is so important to have a focus to work towards.  I have a lot of goals for 2017 around my career, school, family and continuing my learning, but some of my fun ones are:

  • To do an overnight horse trek
  • To ride my bike with cleats
  • To learn the guitar (I learnt for 7 years as a child, but still haven’t quite got it!  Clearly I don’t have that musical ear)
  • Enter at least two races

I believe it is so important for children to have goals, both at school and outside of school.  Today I talked to the whole school in assembly about my goals and I encouraged them to go home and think about what their goals are and to come and share them with me during the week.  They can pop in and see me, catch me on duty or email me on mareeh@elmwood.school.nz.

12 December 2016
Dear Parents

Thank you for all of your support this year, we hope you have a lovely Christmas and manage to have a good break in the summer with your families.  Lot’s of parents ask about what learning they should do over the holidays with their children.  I am a big fan of just enjoying family time and creating experiences.  But if you want some ideas, it’s always great to carry on reading through the holidays.  You can get books out of our library or the public library.  Other than that, my advice would be to make it authentic.  The children could write a postcard or a letter from their holiday destination or to a family member who is away.  Maths fun could include baking, working out budgets for their holidays, etc.

I’m sure all the children are tired at this time of year though, so they will need a good break as well.

Have a wonderful break and look forward to seeing you in 2017.
Maree
21 November 2016
Salvation Army Collection
Thank you to everyone who contributed with donations for the people affected by the Kaikoura earthquake. Special thanks to Maddie Eastgate and friends and to Daneen, who assisted with the collection of goods.

Family Fun Day
If you have any photos from the Family Fun Day that you would be happy to share, please email them to me at mareeh@elmwood.school.nz

17 November 2016

SALVATION ARMY COLLECTION FOR PEOPLE AFFECTED BY THE KAIKOURA EARTHQUAKE
This week a parent and a few children came to see me about helping out the people in need after the earthquake on Monday morning.  It is lovely that we can try and give back, like others did for us 5 years ago. Thanks Daneen for sorting this out with the Salvation Army.
Here is a message from Maddie in Year 5 about how we can help:
“When the Christchurch earthquake hit, I know I was really scared, I know that lots of things broke, and I know that lives were lost. But now a bigger earthquake has hit, and it has caused lots of damage to homes, and buildings. I remember that everyone around New Zealand was helping Christchurch though, so I want to give them something back. I want to help those in need. If you would like to help, please bring some necessary (blankets, non-perishable food, nappies, baby wipes etc.) items to school on Monday 21st November between 8.30-9.00am.  Please take the items to the PE shed balcony where we will box them up for the Salvation Army to collect.
Thank you!”
😊
Maddie Eastgate, Year 5


14 November 2016

Dear Parents/Caregivers
What a nasty way to finish the long weekend.  A scary time for many.  Luckily for us our farm at Greta Valley is all ok.  We were lucky compared to some of our neighbours a few kilometres up the road. The majority of the children today were absolutely fine and getting on with their school life.  There were obviously a few that were still quite shaken up, including some of our staff and parents.  Even though I know most of you have been through this before, here are a few ideas from the Canterbury District Health Board to help your children get through this. If your children are struggling or you need any extra support, please don’t hesitate to talk to their teacher or come and see me.

screen-shot-2016-11-14-at-3-06-46-pm

If your children are struggling, or you need any extra support, please don’t hesitate to talk to their teacher or come and see me.

Maree

07 November 2016

Trading cards
There have been a few incidents recently regarding children trading Pokemon cards. As a staff, we have decided that there is to be a ban on all cards at school. Any Pokemon cards, or equivalent, are to be left at home. Thanks for your understanding.

Maree

25 October 2016

Hi everyone

I hope everyone had a great long weekend.  The running club is starting this week for those Year 5/6 students who have registered with me.  Thank you to the parents who are coming with us.  We are meeting outside the PE Shed (next to the Elmwood Grind Cafe) at 7.30am on Wednesday.  

Cancellations and Postponements
For any trips, sports events, etc as soon as we find out information we will put it on the school Facebook and Twitter as soon as we have heard, usually this is by 7am.  This automatically goes to the school website on the Twitter feed.  If you don’t have Facebook or Twitter, you can check the bottom of the home page on the website to see the information on the Twitter feed.

The Lunchtime clubs have started for this Term.  This could be the time to try something new or do something that you love.
Please click on the following link to view the timetable Term 4 Lunchtime Clubs Timetable
If you have any questions, email me on mareeh@elmwood.school.nz.

Maree

17 October 2016

Dear Parents

Term 4 is a really busy term, with lots of exciting things happening.  For some children it’s their last term in the juniors, or middles or even at primary school.  One thing I love about Elmwood is all of the extra-curricular opportunities available.  Children are at school to learn reading, writing, maths, etc, but also to grow as a person, to love learning, to try new things, take risks.  If your child is learning something new or doing really well in an extra-curricular activity, in or outside of school, feel free to share a photo with me so we can spread the love and celebrate it on our Facebook page.

We have the Lunchtime Clubs starting this week.  This could be the time to try something new or do something that you love.
Please click on the following link to view the timetable Term 4 Lunchtime Clubs Timetable
If you have any questions, email me on mareeh@elmwood.school.nz.

10 October 2016

Dear Parents

The final curriculum report we give the BOT is our Maths report written by Louis Bertie, our Maths leader, and I.  Here are the main points:

Maths

  • Our latest National Standards data shows that 86% of our students are at or above the National Standard in Maths.
  • Children that aren’t at or above are picked up through the learning support programme and either have support within the classroom programme or are withdrawn in small groups or one-on-one.
  • Teacher Aides attended Numicon PD Term 1.
  • Some of our teachers presented lectures at UCCE on Maths
  • Teachers use e-asTTle, PAT, JAM and Basic facts tests to assess students.
  • Some teachers attended the Maths Symposium professional development
  • We are part of the Te Kahui Cluster meetings on maths each year
  • Revision of ENS Maths Curriculum in 2015.  The development of Mathematics at Elmwood Normal School was created by the math team and curriculum team and then reviewed by the whole staff. This is a living document.

Maree

19 September 2016

Curriculum Reporting 
During the year the BOT receive reports on our Writing, Reading and Maths at Elmwood. Over the next three weeks I will include information from each of these reports. Some of the main points from the Reading Report:

  • Our latest National Standards data shows that 90% of our students are at or above the National Standard in reading.
  • Children that aren’t at or above are picked up through the learning support programme and either have support within the classroom programme or are withdrawn in small groups or one-on-one.
  • Teachers are using a range of assessment tools to assess reading- e-asTTle, PAT, PROBE, Running records
  • The learning support team have had professional development on Rip it up reading course and Train the Brain
  • Reading achievement at Elmwood is of a high standard and from our data we can be confident in the effectiveness of our programmes and very competent teachers.

13 September 2016

In the weekend I went to a conference on Growth Mindset, led by Carol Dweck, a professor of Psychology at Stanford University in California and Susan Mackie, the CEO of Be – Better People.  I found it really inspiring and took a lot away that I would like to share with you all.  Carol talks about having a growth mindset, rather than a fixed mindset.  Her definitions are:

Fixed mindset – Intelligence is fixed

Growth mindset – Intelligence can be developed

We started by watching a short clip on ‘The Science of Character‘.  Here are some of the key points I took away from the conference.

  • The most amazing word – ‘YET’.  I don’t know….yet.  I can’t do it….yet.
  • I don’t divide the world into the weak and the strong or the success and the failures……I divide the world into the learners and non-learners.
  • Being afraid to make a mistake is the enemy of learning.
  • Growth mindset is about teamwork. Rewarding teams. Not trying to outdo your neighbour.
  • This is hard, I’m struggling – that is what learning is about.
  • We want – Children taking on more difficult problems.
  • Growing your brain.
  • A growth mindset is not just about effort. It’s also about finding the strategies. Children need help, support, advice, guidance.
  • Growth mindset is about unlocking their learning. Not just praising for the sake of it.  Praise the process, not just the final product.
  • Fixed is often because you are scared – to protect you from those feelings.
  • Michael Jordan – ‘I’ve failed and failed again, and that’s why I’ve succeeded’
  • A growth mindset gives you compassion for other people.
  • Growth mindset – A mastery response to achieving goals.
  • Sheer effort is highly important, but it is not the ultimate value.  Learning and improvements are.  Effort is one route to learning and improvement.
  • When children fail, focus on the learning process.
  • Treat failures as beneficial for learning – give clear feedback and a chance to resubmit.

These are some of Carol and Susan’s suggested readings and clips if you would like to find out more. Or feel free to pop in and see me if you would like to talk more about it.