31 August 2009

Our Magic School Bus!

Dear Parents,

Today was a big day in many ways! The Seniors were the first to travel on our bright yellow 'Magic School Bus'! Thank you to Ms. Christiana for driving us so safely to the pool. Mr. Phil had a great start observing the students' swimming skills. For the girls who need a little longer to dry hair, I will bring in a hair dryer so they can dry their hair back at school.

We also had our first 'Celebration of Learning' in the Hub today. Students volunteered to share a piece of their learning with the school. I was impressed with the confidence students displayed as they talked about our international flags, tree bark sketches and exploration of how we learn best. All students will continue to be invited to contribute. Ms. Jax praised the students for the caring behaviour the teachers have seen at playtime. It's been lovely to see students playing together and sharing resources and games.

We are beginning to discuss 'Learning Logs' in class. Creating a 'Learning Log' will be one of the tasks that students will be creating at home and then sharing in class as the term progresses. I will give you more background information at a later date. To begin with each student will create a learning log in school so we are all clear about the criteria. We will explore the many different ways you can create a learning log. To begin the process please would you help your child find some things that are connected to this task:

All About Me!

Collect materials that you can use to create a 'Learning Log' that tells the class all about you. You may want to share details about your family, important occasions, favourite hobbies, sports, places you've visited, interesting pieces of information, the story of how your name was chosen.........................It is up to you. Materials can include a list or notes of details you want to remember, photos, pictures cut from magazines and copies of important documents. Bring the materials to class where we will build the logs together. Please have things in school on Monday. We will build the logs over the week.

Students have come home with a self selected reading book this evening. We discussed how you choose a book based on interest and skill. I have introduced the students to the 'Five Finger Test' to help begin the selection process. Please have a look at the book mark I sent along with a new book bag. As you read with your child please discuss how they chose their book and how appropriate they feel the selection is. For some students the choosing process is something that will take time to develop. Students are free to exchange their book when finished. Students will also be reading in groups in class. I will let you know more about this later too.

Please could you check that your child has a painting shirt in school. Miss Babs, our German teacher, has suggested an old man's shirt with the collar and cuffs cut off. Thank you for your help with this. I appreciate that there are so many things to remember at the beginning of the year.

Have a wonderful weekend- we all deserve it after a brilliant start to the year!


24 August 2009

Ice Cream Monday!

Dear Parents,

What a great start to the new school year. I think the ice cream celebration at the end of the day was a big hit in particular! We also have a Y-chart hanging in our room showing our ideas. I asked the class to think about how they wanted the classroom to look, sound and feel. Ideas included feeling safe (fire procedures coming up this week!), working together busily and having our learning on display.

Just in case you didn't receive the timetable:

Monday: Gym in German
Thursday: The Seniors will swim this week
Friday: Gym with me

Kind regards,


22 August 2009

First thoughts...........

Dear Students and Parents,

I am absolutely delighted to welcome you to the new school year and our new class blog. It was wonderful to match names to faces yesterday at our induction day. It was such a special morning having seen the progress of the school from an empty shell to a classroom buzzing with children.

Technology is going to be an integral part of our learning at ISOCS. I would like to use this blog to help keep you connected with what is happening in our classroom. Please check it regularly!

Getting to know one another is going to be our priority in the first week. There will be a mixture of group, individual and class activities to help us do this which include collaging, surveying and games. I will also begin assessing students so I can have an insight into each student's learning. On the mathematics course we all attended, we were given a clear reminder of how important it is to give students a range of tasks in order to clearly diagnose understanding and misconceptions. Careful observation is also incredibly important and this takes time.

I look forward to the year of blogging ahead!

Miss Judy