Friday 1 May 2020

Pōhutukawa Term Two 2020 So Far

Kia ora whānau,

Well done everyone for making it through Level Four and also working through the first week of distance learning at Level Three.  By now we are all settled into our home learning / distance learning routines.  Thank you for all of the positive feedback on our Pōhutukawa Hub Website.  We hope that you are continuing to enjoy the variety of learning challenges that we offer each day.

Distance Learning
We are really enjoying receiving work that the children have been creating. It's great to see photos and videos of their learning too - they help us feel connected with you! Please also remind your child(ren) to click the submit button on any work that they have completed in Google classroom - that way we get a notification and know that the work requires our attention and feedback. We continue to strive to offer a variety of learning activities that will suit each family and their different circumstances. We are very happy to see that the majority of our learners are completing at least one learning challenge from our site each day, as well as using the site (and other resources) to complete numeracy and literacy learning daily. Remember to check the Sharing Our Learning section in our Pōhutukawa Google Classroom stream so that you can see what everyone has been up to! Keep up the great work everyone, and remember we are here to help if you or your child need support with their learning.

If you feel it would be beneficial for us to call you or use Zoom to connect with you and your child about their learning, please email you child's home group teacher and we will set up a time in the school day that suits. Please keep in mind that Steve will be on site at school next Tuesday and Thursday and Anna will be on site on Monday, Wednesday and Friday. On these particular days they are busy working with children at school, and so will contact you on the days that they are working from home.

Using Zoom for Learning meetings with students
Last week we opened up Zoom to our Google Suite for students. Our teachers have been using Zoom for their meetings, and find this platform to be far superior to the similar option of Google Meet which some teachers had been using with the children.

Please be aware that your child's security is a top priority for us. To that end, we have the following procedures in place, and we ask you to monitor (as always) what your child is using their school account for at home.

  • All Zoom meetings with staff and students will be recorded by the staff member.
  • Staff have enabled Zoom 'waiting rooms' meaning that students cannot begin a meeting without the teacher who created the meeting being in the room.
  • Students should ideally be in a room where you can at least see them, when they are in a zoom conference. (Bedrooms and bathrooms are not appropriate places for children to be when using social / meeting platforms.)
  • Please remind your child that their Google accounts are for school and learning use only. This means that they should not be using their student accounts to engage in Zoom or Google Meets with one another for social purposes. 

We are, however, aware that the children are missing the social connection with their friends that being at school usually provides. With this in mind, we will be holding a Zoom session on Wednesday May 6th at 11am so that any learners who are missing that social connection with their teachers and friends can connect with us. If your child is interested in attending the Zoom (with your support) please email your child's home group teacher and we will send you the login and password. Please click on the link below for some helpful tips on Zoom Protocol.

Celebration Assembly
We have a Celebration Assembly video to share with you - please have a look below! The video is best viewed in full screen.

Cybersafety at Home When Using School Google Log ins

As you may be aware from the school cyber safety agreement, Beckenham te Kura o Pūroto has various cyber safety systems in place in order to keep students safe. We have one system called “Highlights” that we would like you to be particularly mindful of during lockdown.

This system allows teachers to see Chromebook screens and/or Chrome browser tabs whenever that device or browser is signed into a school Google account during school hours. This is an important tool that teachers use to keep students safe and to offer support while students are learning. It also has privacy implications and is one of the main reasons we always ask and remind students to only use their school account for learning purposes. If you want your child to use their personal device/browser for other purposes or without the school cyber safety systems in place, then it is important that students sign out of their school account and sign into a personal account created by you. If your child has borrowed a school Chromebook, they should only be using this with their school login and for learning purposes.

We also utilise a specialised web filtering system to help keep our students safe online. This filter automatically alerts staff whenever a student account is potentially being used to access unsafe content on the internet. Like Highlights, this filter system is active whenever a student is signed into their school account, even if they are at home. If we receive a concerning filter alert during lockdown, we will contact you via email.

It is important to note that teachers never rely on just the filtering system. We work hard to actively monitor students’ screens and always ask students to work in a place where their screens are visible. We strongly encourage you to adopt a similar approach at home by making sure children only use devices in a family area where they can be easily seen. We also encourage you to actively check that your child/children are using the device in a safe and positive manner.

Junior Neighbourhood Support Canterbury challenges you to…

Make a Stop Motion Lego Movie!
You can use lego or other toys to share one part of your Covid-19 isolation time. Some ideas for experience to share include (but are not limited to):
  • Keeping 2m away
  • Going to the supermarket
  • Staying at home
  • Leaving the house for exercise
  • Easter or ANZAC Day 2020
Send your entries to before Level 2 ends and we’ll put them into a movie that everyone can watch. If you need some help getting started with Stop Motion, have a look at
Stop Motion Studio is a popular Apple and Android app to use to film and you should only need the free version. If you are using a Chromebook, you may like to try Stop Motion Animator (from the Chrome Web Store).

Thanks again whānau for your support and collaboration in these times. Have a great weekend everyone!

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