THANK YOU! Foundation – Year 6 Remote Learning Program
I would like to take this opportunity to thank our students, staff and Ormiston families for transitioning so well from face-to-face learning, to remote learning at home. Three days of remote learning was undertaken and class and specialist teachers continued with daily literacy, numeracy, wellbeing and physical education activities while having opportunities to complete tasks in all specialist subjects. The Ormiston staff had only a very short time (1 day) to put their 3-day program together and I would like to take this opportunity to personally thank Emma Hinchliffe, our Deputy Head of Junior School for all her work in preparing the teachers and utilising our online learning platform Seesaw.
Last year I commented that our remote learning program, onsite supervision and face-to-face learning highlighted the importance of school/home connections. The relationships we all build within our school community continue to be the foundation in all that we do at Ormiston, and consequently, this focus will continue throughout this year.
Early Learning 3 – Cultural Differences
In Early Learning 3 we believe it is not enough for the children to have an awareness of cultural differences and similarities – we want the children to be culturally competent. This means, we want them to understand, communicate with and effectively interact with people across cultures.
Cultural competence encompasses:
> being aware of one’s own world view
> developing positive attitudes towards cultural differences
> gaining knowledge of different cultural practices and world views
> developing skills for communication and interaction across cultures
Belonging Being Becoming pg. 16
We want each child and family to feel valued and be recognised and respected for who they are and to actively share aspects of their culture. In Early Learning 3, we provide diverse resources to reflect children’s social worlds and provide opportunities for the children and families to share experiences and events that are important to them. These experiences also explore diversity and provide opportunities to develop an understanding about the connections between children and families and the similarities and differences between members of our class and the wider community.
Cultural competence is also about the everyday experiences and cultural practices of each family in our EL community. The Early Learning 3 children recently participated in an experience that explored aspects of cultural competence.
During Chinese New Year the children reflected on their family celebrations and shared these with their friends through dialogue and photographs. Families were encouraged to email photographs that depicted how they celebrated this important time, and these were viewed on the Prowise. These photographs and also picture story books were used as provocations for discussions that focused on different aspects of Chinese New Year, for example, red envelopes, food choices and gatherings with family and friends.
We will continue to encourage families to share aspects of their culture with our class as this provides an opportunity to share and discuss experiences that are significant in each child’s life and develops each child’s cultural competence.
Early Learning 3 Teacher
Early Learning 4 Full-Time – A Community of Learners
EL4 children are a community of learners that have started the new term with enthusiasm and a growing capacity of curiosity, as they build on their prior experiences. The children work on their identity and belonging in an ongoing way as they start the day with the Acknowledgement of Country and delegate leadership roles to ensure they are empowering each other to take turns at being a good role model. As a community, we also acknowledge the diverse backgrounds we all come from by greeting each other in many different languages.
Chinese New Year celebrations and the visit from Murrundindi were highlights for the EL4 community. The children were able to talk about respect of the land and the significance of the acknowledgement of country. Murrundindi gave a meaningful explanation about the land around us and how the Wurundjeri people are the custodians of that land. Also, the children learned that paying respect to the Wurundjeri people is an important way to care for our country.
The EL4 children engaged in discussion with Murrundindi about what things would be nice to have in our yard. He gave the children some lovely ideas about including some native animals and plants. We look forward to our upgraded yard with these ideas soon.
The exploration of the big school yard continues for the children as they find interesting things about trees, places to play, rest and eat. Getting an opportunity to interact with older students from Ormiston was a wonderful thrill for the children as they strengthen their connections with the wider community.
Early Learning 4 Class Teacher
Early Learning 4 Part-Time
An important part of our program in Early Learning is developing a sense of belonging and community. Chinese New Year is a special celebration for many of our families in Early Learning and the CGGS community. Children develop a strong sense of identity when their heritage and culture is acknowledged and when they are able to share aspects of their culture with other children and educators.
In the lead up to Chinese New Year, both EL4 classes have been discussing Chinese New Year and what their families do to celebrate. On Friday, the two EL 4 groups celebrated by dressing in traditional clothing or by wearing something red. There was a lot of excitement in the centre as the children entered the classroom dressed in their special clothing. They were proud to show their friends their special clothing.
The children paraded through the playground playing percussion instruments and Miss Joanna taught them a traditional Chinese New Year song. Both groups gathered together for a shared morning tea. The opportunity to share aspects of culture with friends and teachers gave the children a sense of pride and developed a link between home and preschool. As the year progresses, we will continue to acknowledge special events and celebrations that are important to families in our EL community.
Early Learning 4 Part-Time Teacher
At the start of the year, Mrs Gibson likes to involve all the students in a mystery artwork. Each class was given one colour of acrylic paint and they were challenged to mix as many different tints of this colour as they could, by adding white paint. They used a palette knife or paint brush to mix and apply the paint on a paper plate and at the same time, paint two A4 or A3 sized papers, with different sections of tints.
The classes were given the following colour to start their mixing.
Foundation = red
Year 1 = yellow
Year 2 = blue
Year 3 = orange
Year 4 = green
Year 5 = purple
Year 6 = choice from all the 6 colours.
In the second week the students were challenged to use last week’s painted pieces of paper and paper plate, to create a collaged wild-flower. They cut the papers into different shaped petals and used the paper plate as the centre of the flower. Students were also able to use coloured markers, small paper shapes and other small collage materials. Lastly, stems and leaves were added and then the flowers were pinned onto the large curved wall on the Art room.
Year 5/6 Code Club
Last week we were excited to run our first Year 5/6 Telstra Code Club for the year.
We had our highest ever number of code club participants, with 32 students signing up to learn how to code with Bob Norton-Baker from Telstra and myself. To begin the year, we are focussing on learning how to read and write python code through completing some Code Club Australia challenges, starting with Moon Hack. From our first session, students have already learned the importance of the syntax of Python and the difference that moving, adding or deleting spaces can make to how well their code works to produce a program. Bob and I look forward to supporting these students to develop their coding skills throughout this semester.
Deputy Head of Junior School
Cecilia Yang Year 3 – Sporting Achievement
During the recent school holidays, Cecelia Yang of Year 3R competed in the Metropolitan East Long Course Preparation Meet held at Melbourne Sports Aquatic Centre on 23 January 2021. Cecilia placed 1st in the 50 metre freestyle and 100 metre freestyle and came 3rd in backstroke. This is a wonderful effort by Cecilia and we wish her the very best of luck in future swimming competitions. Go Cecilia!
I wish all our Ormiston families a restful weekend.
Head of Junior School