Dear Parents, Guardians and Carers,
I know you are all very busy during weekdays with work and supporting the learning of your children. I have come across quite a few places that are offering virtual tours and/or live streams that will entertain your children as well as being educational that may help you with your own work commitments. Here are some of the links:
Phillip Island Penguin Parade: Phillip Island Nature Park is livestreaming the Penguin Parade every night across Facebook and YouTube Starting from Tuesday, August 25th. You will be able to tune in at 6pm AEST each day to watch Australia’s largest colony of fairy penguins and ask the rangers questions in real time.
Zoos Victoria: The webpage https://www.zoo.org.au/animals-at-home/ provides a host of virtual tours, live webcams and zookeeper talks from the Melbourne Zoo, Healesville Sanctuary and Werribee Open Range Zoo.
Museums Victoria: https://museumsvictoria.com.au/museum-at-home/ provides links to virtual tours at the Melbourne Museum, Scienceworks and the Immigration Museum.
Melbourne Aquarium: The aquarium holds regular live streams that can be accessed via their facebook page. Videos of previous live tours can also be found on the following link: https://www.melbourneaquarium.com.au/explore/live-stream/. The children can also join up as a junior keeper and participate in a range of activities. This link to that can be found here: https://www.melbourneaquarium.com.au/junior-keeper/.
It was great to see at the class meetings so many children participating in the crazy hair day for last week’s Friday Funday. Well done everyone. Miles and Violet have shared their crazy hair with us all, they look great!
This week's Friday Funday is bright coloured clothes day. I can’t wait to see all the colours!
Thank you for all the work you are doing to support your child during remote schooling! As I have mentioned many times before, I know it is a challenge, especially when balancing your own commitments, so as a school we appreciate all that you are doing.
Onsite Intention 31st August 2020 - 4th September 2020
Isolation is getting harder for our children. Here’s how to help.
Though families have felt palpable relief as restrictions have started to ease across the rest of the nation, our Victorian children are struggling more and more to follow the rules still in place. Isolation just seems to be getting harder, and the easing restrictions elsewhere make it more difficult to follow the rules in Victoria. Home schooling is causing more angst and friction. Children in isolation are chomping at the bit to have the parties that have been put off, and events that have been cancelled.
There’s a reason for this. The rules are getting harder to follow for children in isolation. It might seem counterintuitive but psychologically it gets harder for us to stick to rules the longer they go on. There are a few reasons for this.
Rules Get Harder to Follow the Longer They’re in Place.
The Reward Factor
Research suggests that at a very basic level human behaviour is motivated by a desire for rewards. In other words, we follow rules, because we want to be rewarded for doing so. The better the reward, the more we’re willing to stick to the rules.
But in our current situation, the reward is a ‘not thing’. Because we follow the rules, we won’t get sick. Many adults struggle with this, a ‘not thing’ is not really a reward.
Optimism bias is the idea that the best possible outcome is going to be the one that happens to you. In other words, ‘It won’t happen to me’.
A mountain of research shows that humans take into account positive information more readily than negative information when forming their beliefs. So, when our children hear that some restrictions are going to be lifted, they’ll take that (positive) information to heart, and believe that the world is safe again. The (negative) information that there is still some risk impacts their beliefs much less. (Adults are also susceptible.)
The Rebound Effect
For over twenty years researchers have known that actively trying to avoid certain thoughts about behaviour can actually lead to that behaviour. In children this might be thinking about taking a sibling’s toy. The more the child tries to stop thinking about taking the toy, the more likely they are to actually do it. In this same way, because our children have been actively avoiding thinking about all the things they’ve been missing, they’re actually becoming harder and harder to resist.
Here’s How to Help Children in Isolation.
At the end of the day, children in isolation are struggling for valid psychological reasons. But chafing under the rules (however valid) still means a lot of friction and challenges within our homes. But there are ways we can help.
Listen and emphathise. Let them know you recognise that it’s hard, and even that it’s hard for you, too. This makes our children feel heard and understood which leads to feelings of safety, emotional openness and connection with you as the parent.
Use the 3 Es for Effective Discipline.
Explain. When rules get hard to follow, talk about why. If your children are old enough, explain the research. If they’re not, just talk about how it is getting harder, for everyone.
Explore. Then brainstorm ways (together) that might help them to keep doing what they need to do. If your child is struggling with school work at home, maybe they can work in the garden this week. Or maybe they can take mornings off, and work in the afternoons instead.
Empower. Finally, help them to take those ideas and turn them into reality.
Create opportunities for independence.
Children have an innate need to have some choices in their lives. Allowing them to make their own choices where possible, creates motivation within themselves to do the right thing. It also builds psychological health.
Can they be in charge of choosing and making dinner? Or walking the dog around the block? Depending on the child’s age and ability perhaps they can even be responsible for reading and updating the family as restrictions are eased.
Let them back into the world.
As restrictions ease (eventually) we might be tempted to hold our children close. But to the extent it’s safe, let them back into the world. When allowed, let them visit friends, go out for smoothies or meet up at the skate park (as long as that’s allowed and they’re practicing appropriate hygiene and distancing!).
The world is waiting, and as long as it’s safe, it’ll be wonderful for our children to be able to participate again.
As per the fee letter sent to families on 6th April 2020, Important Message about School Fees, there will not be an automatic reduction in school fees due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
School fees are an essential portion of resources for the operation of our school and assist our leaders and staff to enhance curriculum and teaching programs. Therefore, we are asking, for those who can, to continue to support the school financially.
If you have concerns about your financial situation, please contact Maria Churton, School Administration Officer at email@example.com so that we can explore confidential financial support arrangements to enable your child(ren)’s education at our school to continue.
Cancellation of Student Activities
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic school camps for the remainder of 2020 have been cancelled. This includes the Gr 3, 4 and 6 camps. Swimming programs (Gr 3-6) scheduled for term 3 have also been cancelled. Diocese of Sale Catholic Education Limited (DOSCEL) will continue to monitor the advice of the Victorian Government to ensure that the health and safety of staff and students remains the highest priority. This may mean that swimming programs and excursions remain suspended during Term 4, 2020.
Credits for camps and the Gr 3-6 swimming program have been applied to fee accounts. Further credits will be applied as activities are cancelled. If this credit results in your fee account being overpaid a refund may be requested. Such requests must be submitted in writing, via email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
The wisdom of God is beyond our understanding, yet it is through us that God works. We have been entrusted with the mission of the church and, the foundation for this, is a personal faith in Jesus. In this Gospel Jesus challenged the disciples by asking “Who do you say I am?” How would you respond to this question? What would you say to Jesus?
We cannot hope to understand the wisdom of God but we need to have faith that God will always be with us and care for us. Share with your children the importance of a personal faith in God and the need to be faithful to his teachings in our daily lives.
Remote Learning - Religion
During Week 6 all of the children across the school worked on a task about the Assumption of Mary. The children listened to video clips full of information or stories about how special Mary was. Each level responded to the task in different ways.
The Grade 5/6 children wrote a Newspaper article about Mary for the front cover of the paper. Here are a couple of the newspaper reports showcasing their work.
Mary and Jesus attend a wedding at Cana
Mary also known as the Virgin Mary is the mother of Jesus. According to biblical accounts, Mary has shown great humility and obedience to the message of God. For this reason Mary has been blessed among all women. In addition, it has made Mary an exemplar for all ages of Christians.
The following is a true account of Mary and her son Jesus attending a wedding. The wedding took place in Cana in Galilee. During the wedding the wine ran out and it was an embarrassment for the host.
Mary noted about the wine and said to Jesus, “They have no more wine.” And Jesus replied “Woman, why do you involve me ?, my hour has not yet come.” Later, Mary also said to the servants “ Do whatever he tells you”.
At the host compound there were six stone water jars the kind used by the Jews for ceremonial washing, each holding from twenty to thirty gallons. Jesus said to the servants, “Fill the jars with water” so they filled them to the brim. Jesus had supplied the host with a great abundance of wine, as much as would be sufficient for a banquet to a hundred and fifty men.
Then he told them, “Now draw some out and take it to the master of the banquet.” They did so, and the master of the banquet tasted the water that had been turned into wine. He did not realize where it had come from, though the servants who had drawn the water knew. Then he called the bridegroom aside and said, “Everyone brings out the choice wine first and then the cheaper wine after the guests have had too much to drink; but you have saved the best till now.”
What Jesus did here in Cana of Galilee was the first of the signs through which he revealed his glory; and his disciples believed in him. After this he went down to Capernaum with his mother, Mary and brothers and his disciples. There they stayed for a few days.
When Mary was patient and brave when she had to get counted and when she gave birth . She needed to get counted in Bethlehem she rode on a donkey to get there. She went with Joseph to Bethlehem while she was carrying Jesus. They needed somewhere to stay and asked every INN all the inns had no room left but one said we have a barn. They went in the barn and that is where they stayed. Later Mary gave birth to Jesus and was put in a manger. Mary and Joseph felt worried and scared because it was so far away from their home and Mary was pregnant.
Remote Learning - Art
Here are some examples of some of the fantastic Artwork received by Mrs Hanrahan and Mrs Hill during remote learning.
Welcome to the 2020 Victorian Premiers’ Reading Challenge.
Victorian Premiers’ Reading Challenge
The Victorian Premiers’ Reading Challenge is now open and St. Michael’s Primary School is excited to be participating. A new application is being used this year that offers a range of exciting features including:
- access to a library catalogue (including book images and blurbs)
- a modern user-friendly interface
- rewarding students with badges as challenge milestones are achieved
- the option for students to mark books as a favourite, give them a star rating or complete a book review
The Challenge is open to all Victorian children from birth to Year 10 in recognition of the importance of reading for literacy development. It is not a competition; but a personal challenge for children to read a set number of books by 19th September 2020.
Children from Prep to Year 2 are encouraged to read or ‘experience’ 30 books with their parents and teachers. Children from Year 3 to Year 10 are challenged to read 15 books.
All children who meet the Challenge will receive a certificate of achievement signed by the Victorian Premier and former Premiers.
To read the Premier’s letter to parents, view the booklists and for more information about the Victorian Premiers’ Reading Challenge, visit:www.education.vic.gov.au/prc
As you know, reading helps ensure children develop important foundational skills –
setting them up for school and for life. Just as importantly, reading also helps our kids imagine, explore and learn more about the world around them.
This year, everyone who completes the Challenge will receive a Certificate of
Achievement – and with more than 12,000 titles on the Challenge’s reading list, there really is a book for everyone.
For children not yet at school, the Challenge invites parents and carers to experience
40 books with their child. For students from Prep to Year 2, the Challenge is to read or experience 30 books and for students in Years 3 to 10, the Challenge is to read 15 books.
I also encourage you to visit the Challenge Facebook page: facebook.com.au/VicPRC
There you can join the community of avid readers to share stories, stay informed and
2020 Premiers’ Reading Challenge has been extended by two weeks.