How a solar panel works.Year 5/6 students have had a lot of challenges in designing (and redesigning) their solar powered cars in Science and Technology & Enterprise this term. Teams were provided with 4 solar panels to build their car around. The student’s challenge was to build a solar car that travels as fast and straight as possible. In the learning journey we have learnt that when sunlight falls onto the solar cell, it produces a small electric charge. Like a battery, the charge is positive on one side of the cell, and negative on the other. A wire connects the two sides of the cell, allowing electricity to flow. This flow, or current, of electricity can be used to power a small light bulb, turn an electric motor, or recharge a battery. Not only is the sun a source of heat and light, it’s a source of electricity too! Solar cells, also called photovoltaic cells, are used to convert sunlight to electricity. Solar cells are used to provide electricity all kinds of equipment, from calculators and radios to roadside emergency phones and recreational vehicles.

The video below was taken at RACE DAY today. The sun showed up too at a perfect 42ºC!

Congratulations to the winning design and racing team of Ben, Alicia, Luke, Emma and Symone!

In the Science learning area students learn to investigate, understand and communicate about the physical, biological and technological world and value the processes that support life on our planet. Science helps students to become critical thinkers by encouraging them to use evidence to evaluate the use of science in society and the application of science in daily life.

Students make decisions that include ethical consideration of the impact of the processes and likely products of science on people and the environment. Students understand the scientific concept of energy and explain that energy is vital to our existence and to our quality of life.

In the Technology & Enterprise learning area, students apply knowledge, skills, experience and resources to the development of technological solutions that are designed to meet the changing needs of individuals, societies and environments.

Students become innovative, adaptable and reflective as they select and use appropriate materials, information, systems and processes to create solutions that consider the short- and long-term impact on societies and environments.

Source: Curriculum Framework Outcomes

Mae and Jasmine's comic about the showToday we had a visit from the Keith, John and their reptile friends from the SOS Aussies Reptile Park Roadshow. The students had been looking forward to the show and by all accounts it exceeded all of our expectations. The quality and quantity of information provided was excellent! The presenters had an enormous variety of reptiles that absolutely captivated the students attention … we were all enthralled. Check out Year 4 students Mae and Jasmine’s comic about the visit by clicking on the thumbnail image.

SOS AUSSIES strives to develop an awareness and appreciation of the interrelationship, uniqueness and diversity of all that is Australia. It promotes positive attitudes and actions towards maintaining a balance in the natural environment and encourages students to choose a role of informed guardianship towards its conservation. The analogy of a jigsaw puzzle in which all pieces interrelate uniquely to form a unified whole may be used to illustrate this concept. The loss of even one ‘piece’ leaves a hole. The loss of too many pieces and the picture begins to disintegrate. So it is with our environment also.

Principal’s post - October

Welcome back to term 4. It sounds like lots of people have had a good holiday and most have returned without injury. This term is a short one but we have a lot that we wish to achieve.

FountainsOur new drinking fountains have finally been installed. It has been a long process but now we have a large amount of filtered, refrigerated water for students kindy to seven. This enables us to be confident that the students are keeping their fluid levels up in these hot conditions. The senior taps are a little low, but we will see how they go. During this term we will have some new air conditioners installed and hopefully, work will start on our new Kindy shade structure.

We are pleased to announce that Mrs Butcher will be teaching the Aboriginal language of Banjyima as our LOTE for 2007. It is a fantastic opportunity for us to guarantee a LOTE programme, as well as provide a unique opportunity for the students. Learning about Aboriginal culture, through language, is a great way to develop understanding, learn about the local environment, flora and fauna and extend student’s conceptual learning.

We are looking forward to our end of year Christmas Concert, with its ‘Australiana’ theme. One new initiative this year will be the introduction of Learning Area awards. Awards will be presented to students who have demonstrated excellence in each of the eight Learning Areas. It is going to be a great night and a great term.

Clive Emby

Principal

During the first week back I have had the pleasure of spending some time in the kindy and pre-primary classrooms. It is always rewarding to visit these year levels as you can see how much they have grown since the start of the year. There are many good activities that have been put in place to help develop the children’s skills in all areas.

During my visits I noted that many activities can also be done at home. Simple things like tracing shapes, drawing family members, skipping and sorting objects. All these activities are important in developing children’s use of their body and their minds.

I also spent some time with the pre-primary children while they were on the computers. I was amazed that their skill level. They are digital natives as Mr Reid would say. Some of the sites the children visit are listed below.If you do have access to Digital Natives enjoying Maths the internet then I would encourage you to save them to your favourites as they are good educational websites and could be used over the summer holidays.

www.starfall.com

www.rhymesandsongs.com

www.edheads.org

www.rainforestmaths.com

Natasha Stratton

Deputy Principal

Talisha writingWelcome back to the final term. I hope that everyone had a great holiday! Kristin Sattell, Briallen Paine and I have been busy collaborating to set up a literacy block in the Year 4/5 class this term.

We have been very impressed with the way the students have responded and the quantity and quality of work they have produced already!

Here are a couple of pictures of the literacy block in action!

Mrs SattellTalisha wrote nearly a page of writing in 10 minutes during the Daily Dash.

Mrs Sattell is modelling how to write a letter during shared writing.

Anna Podaras
Getting it Right in Literacy
Specialist Teacher

NSW HEADER

Thanks go out to everyone who took part in Science Week 2006. It was absolutely fantastic to see and read all the posters and essays for the Science Week Competition. National Science Week, held 12-20 August 2006, is an annual nationwide celebration of Australian achievements and capabilities in science. It aims to increase community awareness and understanding of the role of science, engineering, technology and innovation in maintaining and improving our society, economy and the environment.

All of the entrants received a Super Science prize to experiment with at home and their fabulous work is on display in the library. The major prize winners were as follows:

  • BugUpper Primary - 1st Prize : Karess; 2nd Prize : Ian
  • Middle Primary - 1st Prize : Amy & Emily; 2nd Prize : Andrew S; 3rd Prize : Axel
  • Lower Primary - 1st Prize : Emmeline; 2nd Prize : Isabel Rose;
    Equal 3rd Prize : Kurtis, Sari, Calvin, Stevie, Joshua, Indira

Well done everyone,
Paul Reid & Susan Whiston - Science Specialist teachers

WritingIt’s great to be back and into the swing of things already. I have had a look at all the great literacy work that has been completed in some of the junior classes. They have been working really hard!! This term we are looking at implementing a literacy block in the Year 3 classes. The model will include a timetabled literacy session. Every morning the students will be involved in a “Daily (writing) Dash” or print walk followed by shared and guided reading and shared and independent writing. The teachers are all very excited about it and we are sure the students will be too.

If you would like to know more about the Daily Dash please come and see me.

TestDuring this week the Year 3, 5 and 7 students have been involved in a state wide testing program with class teachers. This testing is known as WALNA (Western Australian Literacy and Numeracy Assessment).

The assessment is conducted annually to provide parents and caregivers with information via a report at the end of the year about the progress of their children in relation to nationally agreed benchmarks. The benchmarks represent the minimum standard of literacy and numeracy skills expected and how the child performed against these on a particular testing day.

The report will be a supplement to the normal semester two report given to parents by the school and will be just one aspect of the school’s assessment and reporting process.

The tests are of varying lengths and cover Mathematics, Reading, Writing and Spelling and will have been concluded by Friday 11th August.

Welcome back to term three. I hope all families have had a positive and relaxing holiday.

We have had some staff changes. Mrs Lyons has left us to return to Queensland. In her place Mrs Paine is doing a few days a week.

I would also like to introduce our new Aboriginal Islander Education Officer (AIEO) - Tarlah Rodd. Tarlah has taken on the position of helping the school with all matters Aboriginal and ensuring that we do what we can to ensure their success. Tarlah has already shown herself to be an asset to the school and we are looking forward to her input this year.

Mrs Stratton has taken on the Learning Support Coordinator’s position working with students who require a little more support.

We are in the process of negotiating for school improvements. We are making progress on a substantially improved shade structure for Kindy and Pre-Primary kids to eat and play in. We also have projects in the pipeline for new drinking fountains, improved school signage, a more multicultural approach to our school, library upgrade and a new computer setup.

Jodie Mullaley is working hard with the school choirs (with help from Julliette Chester) and a first recital was performed at today’s assembly. A special thank you goes to Jodie for volunteering her time.

writing.jpgWe are nearing the end of term two already! I have had great fun in the Year 3 classes helping out with reading and writing.

Both Miss Hartofilis’s class and Miss Tindale’s class have studied and written for many different purposes this term.

They have written recounts of personal experiences, for example what they did on the weekend. They have written letters to athletes. They have studied the different parts of narratives and written retells of some great stories like ‘Possum Magic’.

The classes have had a go at writing procedures of cooking tasks and art activities. They have also had a go at analysing poems and writing their own.

Finally, they have worked really hard at developing their report writing skills, particularly working on description of a specific topic!

It is great to see the effort the students have put in this term. Both their classroom teachers and I have been really pleased with their progress.

Go Year 3’s!!