From the Head of the Junior SchoolLucas Thurston
Dear Parents and Friends of the Junior School,
At various gatherings across the School, including K-2 Chapel and an impromptu Years 3-6 Assembly, we paused to acknowledge and pay respect to Queen Elizabeth II, with news of her death early this morning. It is a significant moment in our history that deserves acknowledgment and the Queen’s dedication to duty is commendable to our boys as we impress upon them the merits of a faithful life in service of others. As is our custom in moments of remembrance, the occasion was marked with prayer, our anthem and a minute’s silence.
It was certainly quieter in the Junior School earlier in the week, with Years 3 and 4 absent from Monday until Wednesday at camp. I was able to witness and join in the fun and exciting activities that the boys undertook by spending Tuesday with them in the bush at Galston. Congratulations to all our boys on the way they embraced the challenges of camp and being away from home (most for the first time), working together to overcome individual and team obstacles and sometimes facing and overcoming daunting fears. Thank you to our teachers who spent the time away from their families and other commitments to care for the boys.
This morning was one of our favourite occasions in the Junior School when the boys in K-2 hosted Grandparents’ Morning. For all boys, it was the first time they had hosted their grandparents due to the restrictions that curtailed this event for the last two years. It was such a delight to see the boys so proud of their school, their learning and of their grandparents. Grandparents often feature in the life memories we cherish of our early years and are so important for young children in providing love and connection with personal and cultural history. We can learn so much from our grandparents, so it was a joy to have them here at school where our boys do so much learning. We are grateful to the K-2 teachers, Mrs Leedow, Mr Robinson and Mr Niulala for leading this morning’s Chapel service, FAST session and classroom activities. The boys in K-2 (with some help from Year 6 leaders) were wonderful hosts. We hope to enjoy the support and involvement of grandparents in our school for many years to come.
Next week we will distribute to parents of boys in Years 2 and 4 the results of recent Allwell testing, the standardised assessments completed in the ‘off-years’ to NAPLAN. These assessments are not mandated by NESA but are undertaken at Trinity to contribute to the picture developed of each student’s progress over time. Year 6 will have recently undertaken this testing and results will be made available to coincide with Learning Conferences in Week 2 of Term 4. Parents in Years 3 and 5 are asked to watch for your son’s NAPLAN results, which will also be sent home via the boys on Monday. Please look out for these, enveloped and in your son’s bag or Record Book. The individual student reports provide a useful snapshot of a student’s level of achievement at the time of the testing. We use these reports to cross-check our own, more extensive, understanding of a student’s progress, to confirm areas of strength or weakness, or to highlight a new area to investigate further. If you wish to discuss your son’s Allwell or NAPLAN results, please don’t hesitate to raise this at next week’s and next term’s Learning Conferences.
Our Walk-a-thon takes place next Thursday and we are looking forward to an active morning in the fresh air clambering over obstacles. We continue our association with John Maclean Foundation, this year aiming to provide more specialised wheelchairs to allow students with disabilities to enjoy sports. We also use funds towards the events and resources that the Auxiliary continually provides for the Junior School community. We have suggested $25 as a guideline for giving but commend these causes to the generosity of all, encouraging boys (with your permission) to approach family and friends for sponsorship as well. Parents are welcome to come and watch the fun on Oval 1. Each grade will have a 50-minute session lapping the inflatable obstacles, more than enough time to exhaust even our keenest and fittest students. Start times are: 8:45am – Year 6; 9:35am – Kindergarten-Year 2; 10.25am – Year 5; 11:15am – Years 3-4.
Next week, most parents (Kindergarten – Year 5) and boys (Years 2-5) will be conferencing with teachers to discuss growth across the year. Please ensure that you arrive punctually at the classroom for the scheduled conference as teachers have other commitments including numerous conferences to conduct. Remember that each conference is limited to 15 minutes. Boys attending should do so in uniform. Please allow extra time for parking as space in the carpark, especially at peak times is limited. You may wish to consider parking considerately and legally in nearby streets and entering campus on foot via the Chapel gate off Prospect Road.
Next week will also see Public Speaking Finals in Grades 3-6. Choosing finalists is always difficult and the competition on each grade has been of high quality. Finalists have been notified and letters distributed advising the parents of finalists, who are warmly invited to attend. By this time next week, all boys will have had the privilege of attending finals and witnessing high-calibre public speaking, and we will have crowned our Grade Champions for 2022.
With only a week to go before Year 6 depart for their week-long outdoor education experience at Camp Somerset, I remind and encourage parents to communicate to class teachers any additional information that will be relevant to care for your son.
As we edge closer to the end of the term and the end of the year, it is apparent that a reminder of some helpful afternoon carpark procedures is also necessary. Punctual pick-up remains important and parents should be collecting their sons in their allocated zones. We ask that you have your car sign, generously donated by the Auxiliary, clearly displayed on the passenger sun-visor. If you have misplaced your sign or would like to purchase an additional one, you can do so through the same website used by the Auxiliary (signsafekids.com) or make your own. It makes life so much easier for staff who are supervising safety and also prompting students to be ready on your arrival. Thank you!
Next week we will again distribute details about registering interest in the co-curricular programme, this time for Term 4. Expressions of interest will need to be lodged by the beginning of the final week of term (10am on 19 September). Late applications are only considered in the rare occurrence where clubs do not fill or there is a withdrawal.
Mark Dunn | Head of Junior School
See what great love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called children of God! And that is what we are!
1 John 3:1
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