Wednesday 30 May 2018

A few things from Pōhutukawa

Kia ora koutou.

Over the next few days your child will be bringing home sleep slips to fill in, along with a small clock, which is theirs to keep. The sleep slips are part of the sleep inquiry we are working on at the moment, which comes under the bigger umbrella of 'sustaining our well being'. The students are required to fill out three consecutive slips in order to analyse their sleep patterns and formulate a goal to do with sleep. We would love these slips to be returned to school the next day so that each child has a record of how they slept and how they felt when they woke up.

Jungle are off to the South Learning Centre today to participate in a Matariki session there, and Lake and Alpine will be off tomorrow. Thank you so much to the parents who are accompanying the classes, making it possible for us to take advantage of this free learning opportunity.

We are starting new art topics next week and Jarred will be taking a magazine mozaics topic. He requires used magazines to do this. If you have any unwanted magazines at home it would be lovely if you could send them to school for us to use.

We hope you are staying dry and warm!
Tracy, Nick, Katie and Gayle

Thursday 24 May 2018

Term 2 Week 4 in Pōhutukawa

Kia ora koutou

We are well into the swing of term 2 now, and for a winter term we have been pretty lucky with the weather so far. On wet days we ask the students to remove their footwear before they enter the hub to ensure the carpet stays dry for them to sit and work on. Bringing slippers on those wet days is a great idea to keep tootsies warm and preserve socks!

We have had three football sessions with Futa from Cashmere Technical AFC. On a Monday Futa takes half the class for a skill session while the teacher supervises a game and then the groups swap over. As the grass is often wet first thing in the morning, it's a good idea to bring either football boots to wear, or a spare pair of socks and shoes to change into after the football session. The students are learning lots and having fun.

After our very successful writing motivation, the students have been working on an information report on a country of their choice. These reports can be viewed at home through your child's school Google account. The children have been very motivated and are producing some excellent writing.

After the roll call at lunchtime the students are read to. They have two choices of novels to listen to: 'Kaspar Prince of Cats' by Michael Murpurgo and 'The Witches' by Roald Dahl. The children listen attentively, enjoying the quiet time after a busy lunch time.

Winter sport on a Friday afternoon began last Friday. This is often a highlight of the year for the Y5-8 children. We have children going to Hagley Park playing football, hockey, rugby and netball. One football team plays at Carlton Corner. It was great to see excited, enthusiastic students board the buses to Hagley, ready to work as a team and to try their best. To be prepared the children are required to bring to school on Fridays their sports uniform (handed out by the school), any appropriate gear (boots, shin guards, mouth guards, hockey sticks), a water bottle (this is very important) and warm clothes to put on after the game if it's a cold day, as the wind often whistles around the park, making it freezing. This week both of the football teams have a bye, and will still be travelling to the park to support the other teams and to have a training session. The children at school participate in an alternative sport programme. The options at the moment are table tennis, tapuaue and hall battle.

Today 43 students from Y 5-8 participated in the South Zone Cross Country at Halswell Quarry. As always, the students represented our school admirably, behaving beautifully on and off the course. The rain we had last night softened the ground and filled the creek, but the quarry wasn't as boggy as it has been in previous years, so the children came away only splattered in mud, rather than drenched. Our children did exceptionally well, and the official results will be in the school newsletter.

This term we have been doing art on Wednesday afternoons. The children had four choices to opt into. These were kowhaiwhai patterns, digi art, papier mache mask making and pop art (Andy Warhol). The teachers are very impressed at the art the children are producing, and are pleased with the perseverance, attention to detail and creativity being displayed by the students.

Next week each class will be vising the South Learning Centre to participate in a Matariki session.
The session will introduce students to the key concepts of Te Iwa o Matariki with a focus on Mahinga Kai, the two earth stars, Tupu-a-nuku, Tupu-a-rangi and the wind star, Ururangi.  The session is interactive and include a range of fun activities, both digital and craft based. There is an interactive Matariki learning experience using Nearpod on iPads, along with a craft activity.  Students will also explore Te Whata Raki (which is Christchurch City Libraries’ Te Reo app about a virtual marae and whare) on the iPads  The sessions will end with a story.

Classes are booked in for their sessions as follows:
  • Tuesday 29 May, 9.15 am – 10.30 am Tracy - leaving 9:00 am and returning 10:45 am
  • Wednesday 30 May, 9.15 am – 10.30 am Nick - leaving 9:00 am and returning 10:45 am
  • Thursday 31 May, 9.15 am – 10.30 am Katie - leaving 9:00 am and returning 10:45 am      
  • Thursday 31 May, 11.00 am – 12.15 pm Gayle - leaving 10:45 am and returning 12:30 pm
There is no cost for your child to go on this trip. If the weather, on the day of your child’s outing, is looking inclement, children will be asked to bring a rain jacket with them, as we will be walking to the South Learning Centre. Thank you to the parents who have offered to accompany us on these learning excursions.
Let's hope this lovely weather lasts for Friday sport this week, and on into the weekend.
Tracy, Nick, Katie and Gayle

Wednesday 9 May 2018

Pōhutukawa - writing motivation and cross country tomorrow

Hopefully your child/ren came home from school yesterday buzzing about the fun they had experienced during the writing motivation yesterday afternoon. We had such a great time!
At the beginning of the session the students were given a passport to enable them to travel between the four countries. They filled in the details on their passport and then had to answer two questions about each country (Japan, Italy, France and USA - Hawaii) before they received a stamp, which meant they could commence their travel. Whilst at each country, along with finding the answers to the passport questions, the children were able to watch a slideshow, listen to music, make a flag and sample delectable edible delights. There was a fabulous atmosphere in the hub as children learnt, munched and drank, all the while dressed in fabulous outfits or clothing from all around the world. Many thanks to those parents who sent along food, encouraged dressing up and supported the fun afternoon. We are very sure that the interest sparked yesterday will be translated into terrific writing! Most children will have decided which country they are going to research, so should be able to tell you at the dinner table.

Tomorrow is our cross country. This is a whole school event. We will be eating lunch at 12:15pm, and then having lunch play. We will take the roll at 1:10pm and then the students will all assemble on the field at 1:20pm for a briefing. The Year 7 and 8 students will be running first, with the Year 5 and 6 students following and then the Year 3 and 4 students after that. Everyone will be finished running by 3pm.

To prepare for this event it would be great if all children had a drink bottle at school, wore appropriate footwear for running and have with them an inhaler if they require one. They are able to change into sports clothing at lunchtime if they wish. If a student is unable to run the cross country due to illness or injury, a signed note is required from home to explain the situation.

Having the whole school participate in a sporting event is a new initiative. As our school wide focus is on sustainability we support the following school outcomes:

  • If we value our physical and mental well being we must act to sustain it. One way to sustain our health and well being is through regular physical exercise. 
  • Cross country running exercises the heart and lungs, developing our physical fitness. 
  • As we run, the body releases serotonin, a feel good hormone that can improve our mental well being. 
  • Cross country running will present a variety of challenges. Success can take on many forms, depending on the goals of each individual. Working to overcome challenge can increase resiliency, which is vital to our mental well being.
  • Being a part of something bigger than ourselves can support our well being. 

The desired outcome for this year’s whole school cross country is to:

  • Provide a platform for children to experience success in a sporting context - We love challenge
  • To promote sustaining a healthy and active lifestyle - We love learning
  • To demonstrate our school spirit - We make a difference
  • To foster tuakana teina - We get there together and We care
Good luck to all our runners in achieving their personal goal!

Image result for cross country running clipart

Friday 4 May 2018

Term 2 Week 1 in Pōhutukawa

Kia ora and welcome to term 2. Let's hope that the dry, sunny weather lasts for a wee bit longer! Hats are no longer needed this term, so it would be a good reminder to your child to bring it home to throw in the wash!

We have lots of exciting things happening in Pōhutukawa, as always! This week we have been involved with trials for winter sports teams. This can be a tricky time for some children as we often have many children trialling for a spot in two teams. We are restricted to entering only two teams by Primary Sports Canterbury. We are entering teams for football, hockey, rugby and netball. Thank you to the parents who have volunteered to help out with our winter sports teams, either as a coach or a manager. To enable us to send as many children as possible to Hagley Park on a Friday afternoon we rely on our community for help, and we really appreciate those adults who are available. Winter sport starts on Friday of week 3, 18 May. The Sushi Factory, which is the lunch supplier on Friday will be delivering orders by 12 noon starting week 3. This will mean that children attending winter sport will still be able to order their lunch and eat it before they leave.

On Tuesday we will be running a writing motivation for the hub. For writing the children will be writing an information report on a country, or place they are keen to find out more about. To kick this off they will be 'visiting' four countries - Japan, Hawaii (USA), Italy and France. Each child will have a passport, and will be required to find out information about each country. There will be opportunities to taste food or drink from each country, and we are encouraging the children to dress up in clothing from any country. The dressing up is optional, and is not an opportunity for a mufti afternoon! If the children would like to dress up they are to bring their clothes to school in their bag, and then get changed at lunchtime. Some children have asked if they can bring items or food from home connected to the four countries they are visiting. So long as they have permission from home, this would be fine. We hope this fun afternoon will promote lots of engaging writing.

We have be training for cross country since last term. It is really great to see the students set individual goals regarding their cross country running. The actual cross country race is next Thursday, 10 May. The whole school will be involved in this event. The students will be eating early at 12:15pm. We have a briefing at 1:30pm. At 1:40pm the Year 8 and 7 students will be running, and then the Year 6 and 5 students will race. Then the Year 3 and 4 students run, in that order. The boys and girls will be running together, and will be recorded separately. Everyone will get a place card for their finishing position. The top six for the year 5 girls, boys, year 6 girls and boys will be representing our school in the zones. Everyone who participates will earn a house point. If a child is unable to participate due to an injury or for medical reasons, they will be expected to have a signed note from home stating the reason. Good luck to all of our runners.

Today after our welcome assembly, a group of Kauri girls promoted the 40 Hour Famine to the year 5-8 students. This year the money raised by this fundraising will go to South Sudan, particularly helping many refugees. One of our values at Beckenham Te Kura o Pūroto is 'We make a difference'. It was explained to us today that we can make a difference by supporting people doing the 40 Hour Famine, or by taking part. Packs were given out at lunchtime today to interested students. The following information has been taken from the 40 Hour Famine website, where more information can be found:

Thousands of young lives have been affected by conflict, drought and famine in South Sudan. Children have fled for their lives across the border to Uganda, becoming refugees. They have travelled a long distance, many without parents or families. While we can’t rewind the past, we can help restart their future.

Let's make a difference for South Sudanese children in Uganda.

While our overarching topic this term is 'Sustaining our wellbeing', our focus for the first part of the term is sleep. Over the next few weeks our classes will be taking part in Yes, I can! Sleep. This is a learning unit based around sleep and finding ways to improve your own sleep. Research has shown that as little as 10 minutes of lost sleep a night can lead to symptoms similar to ADHD. Our school is doing this unit in partnership with the University of Canterbury to try to improve the duration and quality of children’s sleep. We would like to equip children with the knowledge and skills required to make positive changes to their own sleep.

The tamariki will have the opportunity to learn about sleep. They will conduct their own research and present their information in unique ways. Together we will learn about the benefits of sleep and positive sleep hygiene. Tamariki will then be given the opportunity to monitor both the duration and quality of their sleep. They will be given a clock to put near their bed so that they can track the duration of their sleep. During this time, we encourage you to talk to your child about sleep and support them if they would lie to make small changes to their sleep environment and routines.

If you would like sleep support or to share your own knowledge on sleep, please join the parent Facebook group….
Yes, I can! Parent Page

We have loved seeing your little darlings back at school, and look forward to the fun and learning to be had in the rest of the term.

Tracy, Katie, Nick and Gayle