Week 8 Term 2 2022
We acknowledge the traditional custodians of the land throughout Australia and their continuing connection to land, sea and community. We commit ourselves to actively working alongside Aboriginal people for reconciliation and justice.
We have had a very busy couple of weeks; our school Athletics Carnival today, AFL Gala Day and Diocesan Cross Country to name but a few.
On Wednesday evening we had our first Family Night organised and led by Jo Kelly from Parent Assembly and Mrs Janita Thompson, Parent Partnership Lead in the Catholic Schools Office. It was a wonderful opportunity for our school families to reconnect, and for our new families to meet each other. The night began with a meal and time to socialise, followed by a presentation led by Janita. This included games, information sharing and strategies to assist with feelings around change and challenge. There was a lot of laughing and family sharing and we all learnt a lot about rock hoppers!
We have our second night on Monday evening. If you are booked in for Monday night but due to changed circumstances will now NOT BE able to attend please contact the school office ASAP to give your apologies as the night is catered. Thank you!
We thank Jo, Janita and Parent Assembly for providing this opportunity for our school families.
Please see some photos below of our Family Night.
At this time of the year, teachers are also very busy finalising students’ assessments and Semester One reports. The lead up to writing reports this semester has been challenging. We have had disruptions due to the floods, students and staff absence with Covid, flu, colds etc but amidst all of this, teachers have worked tirelessly to assess students progress and write reports reflective of students performance and effort. I frequently hear them talking and discussing work covered, results gained and effort applied, in order to decide on a final grade. Reporting is not an easy process and there is much time, thought and deliberation put into the final result. I congratulate all staff on their commitment in ensuring that students’ reports are a true and accurate reflection of their progress and effort. School Reports will be emailed home on Friday, 27th June.
I share the following reflection, Beatitudes for Teachers, as they prepare these reports for their students:
Blessed are you who are called to teach, for you walk in the footsteps of the Master.
Blessed are you who sow peace and harmony in your school, for yours will be the joy of the Lord.
Blessed are you when you share your faith with others, for your name will be written in their hearts.
Blessed are you who plant seeds of hope in youthful hearts, for your legacy will be the harvest.
Blessed are you who are sensitive to the cries of youth, for you will become their voice.
Blessed are you who anguish now when your students are difficult, for your effort will be their light.
Blessed are you when you leaven your teaching with patience and empathy, for this is to teach as Jesus did.
Blessed are you when you reach out for your students, for you will find God and rejoice.
Blessed are you who lead your students in the ways of all virtue and love, for yours is the Kingdom of God.
HOW DO TEACHERS GIVE A TO E GRADES?
Teachers use their professional judgement to determine a student’s grade. Both formal and informal assessments are undertaken throughout the reporting period. An overall achievement judgement call is made by the teacher, based on data and evidence of what the student has demonstrated, the standards described in the A-E grade scale and the NSW Syllabus documents.
Your Child’s Report
All schools in NSW are required to use the A-E (the Common Grade Scale) reporting system for students from Year 1 onward. What does this mean? The Common Grade Scale describes performance at each of five grade levels as set out below.
|A||The student has an extensive knowledge and understanding of the content and can readily apply this knowledge. In addition, the student has achieved a very high level of competence in the processes and skills and can apply these skills to new situations.|
|B||The student has a thorough knowledge and understanding of the content and a high level of competence in the processes and skills. In addition, the student is able to apply this knowledge and these skills to most situations.|
|C||The student has a sound knowledge and understanding of the main areas of content and has achieved an adequate level of competence in the processes and skills.|
|D||The student has a basic knowledge and understanding in few areas of the content and has achieved very limited competence in some of the processes and skills.|
|E||The student has an elementary knowledge and understanding in few areas of the content and has achieved very limited competence in some of the processes and skills.|
Parent Teacher Interviews Reminder
These interviews are on Monday 27th – Thursday, 30th June. Our Compass Booking site is now open to enable parents to book interviews for your child/children at a time which is suitable for you. At our interviews, parents and teachers have the opportunity to celebrate successes and also to work through any recommendations and goals to improve learning outcomes for the remainder of the year. As you know, Legislative requirements mandate that students are assessed using an A-E grade scale and this can cause some anxiety for parents. These interviews can allay any of these anxieties by discussing and supporting grades which have been given by teachers.
What a fantastic day we had at our Athletics Carnival today where we were blessed with perfect weather. The change from our normal venue did not detract from the carnival spirit or the great performances. From our budding athletes to our infants children just having fun it was a great day for all. It was fantastic that we could all be together again for our carnival.
A big thank you to Mr Tickle for his organisation prior to, and today that ensured everyone was included and had a great day. Thank you to our staff for supporting Brendan by helping with the set up, assisting with events and packing up.
Photos will follow later.
Enrolling for Kindergarten 2023
If you have a child beginning school next year, or know of anyone who does, would you please advise them to go onto our school website and complete the Online Application form. of this.
Thank you for the great job that you do in ensuring your children are dressed in the correct school uniform each day. Lately we are noticing, however, that some students are choosing to wear the wrong uniform, particularly the wrong sports shoes and socks. As it is the end of term we have been a little lenient, however, the expectation is that all students will return from the holidays in the correct uniform. Wearing our uniform correctly promotes a sense of belonging and pride in our school. If your child is not in the correct uniform I ask that parents/carers provide a note explaining why they are out of uniform.
At St Carthage’s we place great importance on teachers and parents being in partnership with each other so that we can provide the best outcomes for all our students. We will be holding Parent/Teacher Interviews in Week 10 of this term (Monday 27th June – Thursday 30th June). We invite you to attend our Parent/Teacher Interviews so that you can discuss your child's Semester One report.
These meetings will run for 15 minutes and they will take place in alignment with COVID safe practices. Please sanitise your hands when entering the classrooms and if you are unwell at the time of the interviews please reschedule for a later date.
Please go online to your Compass portal to book a Parent/Teacher meeting with your child’s classroom teacher. Bookings will close at 9am on Friday 24th June 2022. I have attached two documents to guide you through how to make a booking online. If you have any issues please don't hesitate to contact me.
Please note Mrs Farmer (Kindergarten Gold) will be on leave during these interviews. She is offering interviews next term and will be in contact with you regarding these.
How to book an interview via the Compass app
We encourage students to be active in acting to serve others.
If they see a need, they are asked to 'look with the eyes of Jesus' and ACT to make their world a better place...
Our Next Family Night is next Monday evening!
Our first 'Family' night was an enjoyable occasion!
Families meeting families, families talking to each other about change, some FABULOUS food and some really useful information!
Thank you to our fabulous Parent Assembly who made it all possible!
Our next Family Night is next Monday Night - it is VERY IMPORTANT that if you are booked in for Monday night but will now NOT BE able to attend PLEASE contact the school office ASAP to give your apologies as the night is catered. Thank you!
Talking about families...I have always loved this idea and thought I would share it with you!
“Don’t worry that children never listen to you; you can rest assured they are always watching you.”
St Carthage’s Parish and School Sacramental Program 2022
At the moment we only have a date for the Sacrament of Confirmation - Year 3 - 26 October, 2022 – in the Cathedral from 5:30pm. Dates and arrangements for Reconciliation and Eucharist will be advised as soon as they are confirmed.
We don’t wish any child to miss out on any Sacrament as they are special events in the lives of children and their families. Children who have missed the opportunity to participate in any of the Sacraments may still enrol in a Sacrament e.g. a Yr. 6 student may be enrolled in any missed Sacrament.
Information - the Sacrament of Confirmation
A copy of a Baptismal Certificate needs to be provided for any child who is enrolled in a Sacramental program unless your child was Baptised in the Cathedral Parish or you provided one to the school during the enrolment process. If you do not have this, please contact the Parish where your child was baptised to obtain one as soon as possible.
A Sponsor (a practicing Catholic over 18 years of age) needs to be nominated for each student to accompany them on the evening of their Confirmation. If the Sponsor is unable to attend the Confirmation evening a parent/carer can 'stand in' for them during the Confirmation ceremony.
Parental Authority - Both parents need to authorise the reception of these Sacraments. If only one parent has signed the enrolment form and there are Court Orders in place a copy of any Court Orders concerning residential arrangements for the Candidate, time spent by the Candidate with either parent, all parenting issues must be supplied with the Enrolment Form.
Enrolment Forms for the Sacrament of Confirmation will be issued to all students in Year 3 and will also be available in the School Office. Enrolment Forms will also be available in the office if your child is in Years 4-6, Baptised but yet to be Confirmed. These children will be prepared in a small group with Mr Hatchman.
This week all staff were invited to spend time after school reflecting upon how we can continue to build ‘right relationships’ within our school community. Bishop Greg spoke by video about how the Pandemic, though bringing great suffering to our world, has also helped us re-focus on what really matters; our relationship with ourselves, others and God.
Staff spent some time putting aside the busy-ness of life and simply reflect on the power of healthy relationships. A section I particularly liked was the following:
Jesus also understood that the flow of loving energy between people is a direct path to developing a deeper relationship with God (which is why loving our neighbour is such a prominent teaching). Saint Teresa of Calcutta develops this idea, “It is easy to love the people far away. It is not always easy to love those close to us. Bring love into your home for this is where our love for each other must start.”
The great wisdom teachers throughout history all seem to point us in the same direction; there are things that we mistakenly think will deliver to us a rich and fulfilling life, but they offer only temporary respite from that which we most deeply and truly yearn for. Love of God, love of self and love of neighbour, it really is as simple and as difficult as that.
We ended our session in small groups using a contemplative practice - Visio Divina uses art and requires us to slow down and truly look at an image. The image we used was Rembrandt’s Christ in The Storm on the Sea of Galilee.
World Meeting of Families
Over several days June 22-26, delegates from around the world will gather in Rome with Pope Francis for the World Meeting of Families. But it’s not just an event for the select few in Rome. The Pope has also encouraged local families to celebrate the occasion in parishes, dioceses and small groups.
CathFamily have provided a free printable handout for use by parishes and schools exploring the official theme of the event - Family love: a vocation and a path to holiness. The PDF document may be viewed here.
- Sacrament of Confirmation - 26th October, 2022 – in the Cathedral from 5:30pm
- The Catherine McAuley & Mary MacKillop story - a Play - offered to Year 3 students - 24th June
- Feast of the Sacred Heart - 24th June
- NAIDOC Week - 3rd to 10th July
Home Reading Tips and Information for Parents
Should the books be easy or difficult?
The books that children bring home to read, should be at a slightly lower level than what they are reading in the classroom. It is meant to be an enjoyable experience for both parents and their children. Not stressful!
If your child is getting stuck on every second word, then the book is too hard for them. This can get frustrating for both you and your child which is not setting them up for a positive experience. Organise to meet with their teacher if you feel that the book is too difficult.
Organise a routine
Find a quiet, comfortable spot that is the go-to reading spot with your child. If you have other children, this can be tricky. It’s about finding the right time for you and your child. Whether it be just before they go to bed, or first thing in the morning. Do what works for you!
Ease into the book
Get your child thinking about what the book might be about by asking some questions before you start reading. Here are some examples of what you could ask:
- What do you think this book is about? Why?
- Do you think this is a story or a fact book? Why?
- Can you read the title? Does this give you some more clues?
- What can you notice about the picture on the front of the book?
Don't tell them, guide them
If you tell your child every word they get stuck on, they won’t learn to use the reading strategies they are learning at school and will expect you to tell them every time. This isn’t going to help them to develop and grow as readers.
Here are some basic reading strategies your child may have been taught in the classroom:
- Can they use the picture to help?
- Stretch out the word – so for the word shouted – ‘sh-ou-ted’.
- Can they see for chunks in the word, or smaller words in a larger word – so for shouted – they could see ‘shout’, or ‘out’.
- Can they sound out the word?
- Get them to read to the end of the sentence for further clues. What would make sense?
- Get them to work out the first sound of the word and get their mouth ready for the word.
Comprehension is important
Your child’s comprehension is a vital component of them learning to read. Getting into the habit of asking some questions will help your child with their comprehension skills.
They don’t have to be difficult questions, here are a few that you may like to ask:
- What was your favourite part of the book and why?
- How did you feel when you read that story?
- What did you learn from this story?
- What was the problem in the story?
- Which character did you like and why?
Read a variety of texts
Although readers are sent home with your child, don't limit reading time to just reading these books. Look for different opportunities and a variety of texts such as magazines, cooking books, small novels and picture books. Choose texts that interest them and it is ok to read a book many times. This might drive you insane but allowing your child to choose their favourite book on a regular basis will keep their love of reading alive.
Most of all - Make it enjoyable!
Reading is meant to be a fun enjoyable time with your child.
If you are getting frustrated, this will rub off on them. If they are finding it hard or they are too tired – read a page each. Get them to follow along with you and make silly mistakes! Your children will love correcting you. If this is still too difficult, enjoy some time reading to your child with no pressure at all. Often we feel that once our child starts school, they should be the one always reading. Reading to your child can be a special time that promotes a love for books and builds connections.