Principal's Update - 15th February
As we step into Week four of term one, it is a perfect time to update you on how well our students have settled into the new school year. It is wonderful to report that the transition has been smooth and our students have adjusted well to the routines and expectations of each community.
The teachers and staff have worked hard to create welcoming and supportive environments for our students, and it has been great to see their positive attitudes and eagerness to learn. Our students have demonstrated a strong sense of community and teamwork, and they are building meaningful relationships with their classmates and teachers.
Thank you for entrusting us with the education and care of your child. We are excited to see the progress and growth that will take place this school year.
We take this opportunity to highlight some of our successes thus far. Last week we opened our classrooms for our children to be tour guides and showcase their community learning spaces to provide an informal opportunity for families to visit and learn a little more about the year ahead for their children. It was wonderful to see so many families come to visit the classrooms and meet the teachers. The positive feedback we have received about the timing of the open classrooms has confirmed our belief in the strong sense of community and partnership that we have with our families. We look forward to all of our ‘Parent Meet & Greets’ being held this week. Yet, another opportunity for families to partner with the school to ensure we collaborate to support students to reach their full potential as learners.
The Beginning of the Year school Mass was another highlight for our community. It was wonderful to see so many families in attendance, and the focus on the theme “Rise up” was inspiring. Our students did a fantastic job participating and demonstrated a strong sense of pride in our school community. Our thanks must go to our RE Leaders, Torie and Lucy and our musicians who led the celebration so well. Our Year 6 Student Leaders are certainly rising to the challenge of supporting our younger students to settle into the rhythm of school life.
We are excited about the opportunities and experiences that lie ahead for our students this year. We are committed to providing a challenging and enriching educational experience for all students and look forward to working with our families to ensure their success.
School Counselor Update - A message from Michele O’Bree
I am excited to work at St. Columba's in 2023. I am passionate about every student feeling valued, safe, and having a strong sense of belonging to the school community. I look forward to learning about their strengths and supporting them to be their best.
Preparing your child for School Camps
It is normal for some children to feel anxious about going to camp. Here are some useful tips to help them enjoy the adventure with confidence.
School camp is one of childhood's highlights- I wonder if you can still remember some of the campfire songs, the smell of damper cooking and the names of the kids you bunked with. However, it’s also true for some children (and their parents) the thought of staying away overnight can create a little anxiety.
It’s not uncommon for children to worry about the following:
- Who will they room with
- About being left out of things
- Whether something might go wrong
- Feeling homesick
- Other understandable concerns
Even the most outgoing and confident child may have a few moments of separation anxiety as the time of leave gets closer.
Helping your child feel positive about going to camp is important, as it provides a new opportunity for them to stretch their wings. It is also worth remembering that every challenge your child overcomes contributes to their resilience and self-confidence when facing more unfamiliar situations later on.
Tips for school camp confidence
Talk to your child
When the opportunity to attend school camp arises, ask your kids how they feel about it. Are they excited by the idea? Do they have any fears? During this conversation, you may be able to discern any anxieties or unnecessary mental obstacles and reassure them with your own positive school camp experiences from your own childhood. Be positive by saying things like "this will be fun; you'll enjoy the challenges".
Reduce the sense of unknown
Ask the teacher if you can have a rough breakdown of the daily schedule at camp. This way you can help your child envisage all the fun activities and realise that there is a beginning, middle and end to their stay. Often kids can make rooming requests to be with their friends – ask the teacher if this is possible and explain you are helping your child manage a little anxiety.
Ideally, your child is used to the occasional sleepover at a friend's or family member's home. Remind them of their past successes. If your child refuses sleepovers or regularly calls you in tears at midnight, needing to come home, you may need to work with them in the months before camp to reduce their anxiety.
Practise ‘independence' skills at home
Does your child do their hair, remember to clean their teeth, know how to apply sunscreen and turn the shower taps on and off in the right order? They can practise many simple skills to feel more confident about being away from home.
Prepare, make lists, and pack together
When your child brings home the list of clothes and toiletries they need for camp, get them to help you find (or shop for), then label their things. It's exciting for them to help prepare and pack, but it will also help them be aware of all the things they need to return home again!
Keep communication with school staff
Your child's teacher has probably taken hundreds of kids to camp over the years. They understand that children and parents are stepping outside their comfort zones for the first school camp. Feel free to send a note to the teachers who will be supervising your child to raise any concerns you have. They'll appreciate the extra information as makes their time at camp easier too.
Telling your child, you believe they're ready for school camp and they'll have a great time helps your child believe it too.
School camp is a great opportunity for your child to push their boundaries, discover new friends and experience outdoor adventures first-hand.
Please read this useful article Keeping cool for school camp
Important Dates for Term One
|Tuesday 14th & Wednesday 15th February|
Parent / Teacher Meet & Greets
|Wednesday 15th - Wednesday 22nd February|
|Monday 27th March - Tuesday 28th March|
Year 3/4 Community Camp
|Wednesday 5th April||Athletics Carnival - Llanberris|
|Thursday 6th April|
Holy Thursday Liturgy
Last Day of Term One
We thank every one of you for your continued support of our school. We know that positive partnerships between the school and home promote a positive school culture where children thrive and grow academically, socially and emotionally.
If you have any questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to reach out to us.
Bambi Afford & Shaun Mohr