5 February 2016

posted Feb 6, 2016, 12:33 AM by Alison Bray   [ updated Feb 6, 2016, 1:19 AM ]
5 February 2016

Dear Parents                                                                                 

Welcome back. I hope you had a lovely holiday time with family and friends. Your wonderful children have settled in quickly and we are looking forward to a great year.

We have three new teachers - Rachael Houston (Room 9) is teaching a Year Three class; Donna Robinson (Room 17) is teaching a Year Five class, and Jenna Weir (Room 15) is teaching a Year Five and Six class. 

We have had two teacher only days to discuss set up, and changes we want to make for 2016. My thanks to our wonderful staff who commit so much to the development of the school.

We have Harriet, from Life Education, working with us for Weeks 1 to 3. We are glad to have her here at the start of the year, as she has great messages regarding relationships, empathy, trust, leadership, resolving differences etc. We know that the children will enjoy seeing Harold again.

As advised last year, we are going to send the Newsletter out digitally this year. The first issue will be next Wednesday. There will be copies available at the Office if you would like to pick one up, or have your child do so.

We will be trialling a change of timetable for term 1, as follows:

   8:50 - Start

 10:00 - FAVE break

 11:05 - Morning tea

 11:30 - End of morning tea

   1:00 - Lunchtime

   2:00 - End lunchtime

   3:00 - Home time.

This change will allow us to have more morning time for the core curriculum - for our Maths, Writing, Word study/Spelling, Handwriting, Reading time. The afternoons will focus on our Inquiry topics, and the other activities we do - assemblies, Te Reo, Sports time, etc. It makes the afternoon learning time a little shorter, which is going to be a positive during these hot summer weeks. Obviously, the children's FAVE and morning tea would have to keep them going for another half hour before they have lunch.

Milk and water - we are going to try having our milk during the mornings, rather than after lunch, when we find that the children are so hot from running around, that they can feel a bit queasy when they have their milk. It has proved virtually impossible to keep up with which children are and are not to have milk, so we are really going to have to rely on the children being clear as to whether or not they take part. Can you please make sure that your child knows -'Yes' or 'No'. Children are welcome to have their water bottles in class - and to access them sensibly during breaks if they choose to. Please make sure that your child's bottle is clearly named - I am sure there will be bottle double ups! 

Reminders: Absences - Please phone and leave a message by 8:30, or email absence@birkenheadprimary.school.nz

Pick up at 3pm. Please make sure that your child knows that they must come to the Office if you are unable to pick them up at the usual time. Please do NOT take another child home with you unless you advise the Office before you leave the premises.

Footwear - we do insist that the children wear shoes during the day. This means that the children can move freely around the school, and saves a lot of stubbed toes. Please - no jandals, and please make sure footwear has a reasonable tread.

Sun protection - Children must have a wide brimmed hat on when outside for this term. They should have protective type clothing - singlet/strapless type tops are really not protective enough. Dark, fine weave clothing protects more effectively.

We will have a calendar for the Term in the first newsletter next week.

Camp at School night is March 4th I believe. 

Assemblies this Term will be on odd weeks - Weeks 1, 3, 5, 7, 9, 11, starting just after 2pm.

Best wishes for 2016

Nigel Bioletti