Week 9 Term 2 2021
FROM THE PRINCIPAL
I watched a documentary recently about ways in which the brain works, with a particular focus on how our brain interprets and reacts to what we see. One of the concepts explored was “Inattentional Blindness” which is the failure to notice visible items due to more intense focus on a specific portion of what we see or specific object we see. This is a fairly topical concept, as most of us probably watched State of Origin 1, with a particular bias to a team. We all watched the same game, we all saw the same replays, but somehow there can be adamant opposition in views of what happened in that try or no try, penalty or no penalty, foul play or fair play. How does this happen? Our eyes focus intently on about a fingernail size of our full vision range at any one time. The broader our attention, the less the focus. Sometimes we can be so intent on looking at the thing or item that we want to see, we become blind to any other visual information that our eyes could take in and process. Imagine how many times we look at our children interacting with others, with such intent focus on what we want to focus on, that we missed the whole picture of the scene available to us? This can be applied to the way we see interactions friends, family members and colleagues each day. The great challenge here, is understanding that we can all physically see or witness the same thing, but did we really process the same information available to us at the time, or did we only take in what we wanted to.
FROM THE ASSISTANT PRINCIPAL
In line with our school’s strategic resourcing and stewardship goal to reduce waste and maximise resource efficiency, our Semester One reports this year will be emailed to families on Thursday 24th June. Reports provide an opportunity for parents and children to reflect on the learning growth that has been achieved this semester. They provide a summary of achievement against Australian Curriculum year level standards.
As well as considering the number of A, B, C grades attained, reports provide an excellent opportunity for parents and students to reflect on the learning journey undertaken so far this year to:
- look for personal progress – both academic and dispositions.
- recognise the importance of effort and improvement.
- focus on strengths and achievements.
- set goals for future growth – both academic and dispositions
Spirit of Catholic Education awards
Nominations from throughout the Toowoomba Diocese have been announced for the Spirit of Catholic Education award for 2021. The winner is announced during Catholic Education Week which will be held from 25 to 31 July. This year we are proud to announce that Mater Dei has three nominees for the award. We congratulate:
Kellie Pritchard – As Year 4 teacher and school impact coach at Mater Dei, Kellie has led initiatives focused on creating exemplary places of learning where every student experiences academic success and comes to know and experience the loving presence of Jesus.
Camille Madden - As a school officer; student learning, Camille supports the implementation of engaging and effective learning that puts students first and unleashes their potential.
Katie Mills - Through her long-standing voluntary commitment to The Samaritan’s Table, Katie lives the Benedictine values of our school. The Samaritan’s Table provides home cooked meals to members of our community who are experiencing times of sadness, grief, hardship or difficulty. For over six years Katie has been the parent coordinator of this group, organising a band of wonderful volunteers.
We are pleased that the Diocese of Toowoomba has the opportunity to hear of the wonderful contribution you all make to our community and to the wider Catholic school community.
ICAS assessments are developed by the University of New South Wales and are designed to target students’ higher-order thinking and problem-solving skills. The assessments are suitable for students wishing to extend themselves academically and take up the personal challenge of competing in an international assessment. Participants will be presented with high-quality, expert-developed questions, allowing them to apply their learning without the need for prior study or revision.
Participation in the ICAS Assessments is optional. Students may elect to sit none, some or all Assessments. Testing will be conducted during school hours.
We are pleased to be able to offer students in Years 2 – 6 the opportunity to participate in the following tests:
- Writing (Years 3 – 6) Monday 9th August
- English (Years 2 – 6) Wednesday 18th August
- Mathematics (Years 2 – 6) Tuesday 31st August
Participation costs for each test are as follows:
- Writing: $21.45
- English: $17.05
- Mathematics: $17.05
If you would like your child to participate, please access further information from below, pay ICAS directly, and complete the Permission form, also available below:
Defence Family Support
With an increasing number of Australian Defence Force (ADF) families at our school, we are pleased to have established contact with the Defence Community Organisation (DCO). The DCO offers support to ADF families, particularly when relocating due to posting and deployments. The latest DCO eNewsletter can be accessed via the link below and ADF families can email DCO.DarlingDowns@defence.gov.au to request to be added to their mailing list.
FROM THE APRE MIDDLE LEADER
A Prayer for the end of Term
As we hit the halfway point of the 2021 school year, we pause to acknowledge the work of all members of the community to illuminate possibilities for each student in our care at Mater Dei. Next week, all students will receive a report card which highlights their successes and targets their steps forward in their learning – a celebration of 6 months in their lives. May we all reflect on our contribution to our 2021 theme - ‘learning with a listening heart’. And may our break from the routine of school offer us an opportunity for rejuvenation and reflection.
Sacrament of Reconciliation
Next term the Parish begins preparation for the Sacrament of Reconciliation. Families in Year 3 will have received a digital copy of the invitation and enrolment details to be involved on Daily Notices on the Parent Portal at the beginning of this week. If you have a child in Year 4 to Year 6 who would like to be involved in this program, please contact the Parish office or the school office for further information. This program is launched at the Information evening on Thursday 15 July (Week 1 of Term 3) at 6pm in St Theresa’s Parish Centre.
Pyjama Day – Friday 25 June
On the last day of this term, Friday 25 June, we will be holding a Pyjama Day as a fundraiser for the St Vincent de Paul Winter Appeal. We are inviting children (and staff!) to wear their pyjamas and to donate a gold coin. We are also asking for donations of blankets and warm bedding to be given to St Vincent de Paul for distribution within our local community. Students are asked to bring along donations on Friday 25 June. Donations will be collected and given to the St Theresa’s St Vincent de Paul conference.
From the School of St Jude
Dear Staff and students of Mater Dei Primary School,
Greetings from The School of St Jude! We hope you and your family are well and keeping safe during these times.
This year Caren is in Standard 5 (Grade 5), a more challenging grade. Last year was a challenging year with the Corona pandemic, which also disrupted education, but our students managed to do well in their Standard 4 National Examinations. Thanks to our dedicated teachers who are providing guidance to ensure our students are stimulated both academically and personally in this year of their education.
Being a Standard 5 student, Caren still has two more astounding years to complete primary school education. We think that it would be rewarding for you to get an update on Caren’s progress. Please open the attachment, Inspired to Learn!
Staff and students of Mater Dei Primary School, we truly appreciate your generosity towards Caren’s sponsorship. Together we are creating future leaders of Tanzania.
END OF TERM
I would like to wish all of our staff and students a refreshing mid-year break. I hope families will get some time to be together and enjoy sharing exciting, learning and growing experiences. A reminder that Monday 12 July is a Pupil Free Day, with the first day of school Tuesday 13 July.
ACARA – INTENSIVE ENGAGEMENT PROJECT
Stuart Burns from ACARA (Australian Curriculum Assessment Reporting Authority) will be visiting Mater Dei on Monday and Tuesday next week to work with staff on trialling the new syllabus for 2022. This is an amazing opportunity for our teachers to work with someone who is so close to the revision and development of the new Australian curriculum.
Joanne Cavanagh will be taking Long Service Leave from 12 July – 6 Aug next term. As a result, she will be off class for the first 4 weeks of Term 3. Mrs Paula Maguire will be replacing Joanne during this time and will work closely with Dylan Philp to ensure continuity of teaching and learning in the Yr 6 classrooms. We wish Ms Cavanagh a relaxing and refreshing break, as she enjoys some well-earned time to travel through outback Australia.
Our new school counsellor, Christina Peak will commence her work at Mater Dei on Monday 21 June. We welcome her to our community and wish her an enjoyable experience.
Clare Perkins has decided to retire at the end of this term for family reasons. She has worked as part of our Learning Support team for the past 10 years. We thank Clare for the valuable support she has provided to many children and teachers during career, particularly the students at our school. Staff will celebration Clare’s work with a shared lunch next week.
OUTSIDE SCHOOL HOURS CARE
Toowoomba Catholic Kindergarten Care (TCKC) will be taking over our Outside School Hours Care duties from 13 July 2021. The service will provide before school and after school care. For more details please follow the link.
Our Lost Property is full to overflowing. Anything that we could identify through naming has been sent back to classrooms and items not named have been placed in a box in the Good Samaritan lost property area. Water bottles, however, have been lined up on top of the chess box as per the photo below. Please claim anything that is yours as after Friday the 25th of June all property will be sent to the clothing pool or bin
We are the Environmental Warriors, a group of year 4 to 6 students with a goal of protecting our environment through sustainable practices.
Did you know that it can take between 15 to 1000 years for soft plastics to decompose? Australian's throw out around 3.5 million tonnes of plastic each year and only 10% of this is recycled. That is why we need YOU to help make a difference.
Before you throw away your soft plastics (such as muesli bar wraps, chip packets and anything that can be easily ripped), check to see if they have the 'RedCycle' or 'Store Drop Off' symbon on them. You can collect these items and return them to specially marked bins at your local Coles or Woolworths to be recycled. These soft plastics can then be used to make new items including tables, chairs and playground equipment.
Keep an eye out for a school soft plastic recycling challenge in Term 3! In the meantime, get recycling. Remember, we are counting on you!
SPORT WITH DANIELLE KING
Athletics and Field Events Carnivals
Thanks to the many spectators who joined the students from Prep to Year 6 on the oval on the Fridays of week 8 and week 9 as they ran, jumped and threw against their peers in the annual athletics field events carnivals. These days are a highlight for many students in their school year and they appreciate having an audience. Special thanks to Felicity Rickuss and Jennifer Coonan and their team for co-ordinating the delicious food and beverages for the athletics carnival. Congratulations to the age champions, special trophy winners and the students selected in the Mater Dei team for the Catholic (16 July) and Range Zone (2 August) athletics carnivals. Please see below the list of age champions and special trophy winners from the carnival. Information for the Catholic and Range carnivals will be sent home before the end of Term 2.
Thanks to everyone for helping out in the tuckshop for the Athletics Carnival. What an amazing lot of parents we have at this school! Special mention to Mel Primus, Jennifer Coonan, Caitlin Lamble and Felicity Rickuss for all your hard work.
Next Tuesday will be the last tuckshop for the the term.
Have a great break!