Mary McKendrick and I would like to express our thanks for a wonderful occasion on Saturday night, the Masquerade Party, where we received so many expressions of gratitude from parents, friends and colleagues. I thought I was totally “incognito” behind my Venetian mask and would be recognised by no-one! However … It was a delightful evening, and the generosity of parents was demonstrated in the auction items offered and the funds raised at the event. It has been a most unusual week with strange weather, one day “sans” electricity, and with more than half the school away on camp. The Infants’ children have shown their mettle, and have been very settled in the absence of their older peers. Next week will be the last week that we have Mrs. Garrett, who has so ably taken 3rd Class, and both 2nd Classes over the past two terms, replacing teachers on Long Service Leave. We will miss her, and hope it is not the last time we can call on her to stand in for teachers on Long Service Leave. Next week sees the final week of a short term, in which the highlight will be the Sports Carnival. On Thursday in the MacLaren Hall at 2.30 p.m., the Infants Classes will be giving a short and sweet Recitation Concert for their parents.
Judith Donald (pictured on right above) Infants Mistress Mary McKendrick Primary Mistress
The coming week will be a busy one with the whole Primary School heading for Bathurst or Milson Island, to enjoy three days of adventure with their teachers and classmates. We ask them to “pack” the School Values in their bags, especially Courage: we are practising Resilience in the face of difficulties, and there will be many opportunities for this. We would also like to hear reports of good manners and respect. And the cherry on the top: enjoy!
Please call in to see the magnificent artwork which has gone up on the wall in the Reception area: this depicts the genesis and evolution of the great teachers and schools of wisdom throughout the history of humanity. You will be amazed.
This week we are practising another aspect of Courage – the Courage to face difficulties with resilience – a quality we all need to remember when faced with things we find testing! One area to encourage the children, especially the young ones, is to try new foods – even just a little taste, before going on with what is tried and enjoyed..
In the Infants lunch we are introducing a little change – firstly we are serving fruit yoghurt which is sweetened and seems to appeal more to the younger palate Greek-style yoghurt will still be available. We are also offering the Infants salad each day. This will be announced daily and served from the hatch for those who would like to try. This is similar to the system for the Primary. We have found in the past if these salads are put on the children’s tables, they are generally wasted, with only a few children eating them occasionally.
This now means that the Infants children have each day:
milk or water
choice of cut fruit in season (compulsory),
wholemeal buttered bread,
a hot dish (occasionally salad and cheese rolls)
we will be encouraging them to try a small amount of the hot dish
cheese to put on bread or the hot food
dessert a few times per term
Moor bakes a chocolate cake for the class that earns the most points by the end of each term by following Lunchtime Rules such as listening to the bell, eating in silence for 5 minutes when the “silence bell” goes, looking after each other, good posture, not wasting food, tidy tables and clean floors!
The Primary children have a similar menu but have spreads available (vegemite, cheese), which is not practicable for the younger ones.
“Book Week” has been well and truly celebrated at John Colet with two author visits (one last week), a marvelous dress-up day and parade, and a whole school “story time” where pre-selected books were read by teachers (pictured below in their costumes) and administrative staff to small groups of children throughout the campus. And next week, we have a visit from the Premier, Gladys Berejiklian, to talk about the Premier’s Reading Competition which has been so successfully running at John Colet this year and previous years. One of the features of our sit-down lunches is that the Infants always have a “silent eating time” each day – about five minutes, to help them eat rather than chat! During this time they have to use sign language to communicate any service or need. To this end, Ms Marley and Miss Bower’s classes have learnt sign language. You will see this displayed on their class windows. They can say please and thank you without uttering a sound!
Mrs. McKendrick left this week for four weeks of long service leave: she will be travelling in Europe and also attending a Plato Convention in Delphi. Bon voyage! A very disruptive, but efficient day for School Photographs and the weather smiled on us! Next week is Science Week and it begins with a visit from “Fissics “ – they put on a Science Show which will inform and delight the children with the magic of science. There will be no normal Monday Assembly on 14th, as “Fissics” require the Hall and need time to set up. The Headmaster will once again be offering some lunchtime Science activities. The Practice of Courage continues.
Another term begins! This term our practice is Courage and specifically the courage to be truthful and to own up. Our approach to this is that when we ask children about an incident or situation, if they own up immediately (or even eventually) we praise them for their courage to do so, and then approach the situation and discuss how to make amends. This praise of courage supports the children in facing their behaviour and then seeking to correct it.
Next week John Colet is hosting two visiting debating teams, which will enable 5th Class to sit in and gain an insight as to how this works! The topics are: There is no need for tests and exams and Drones should be banned. They are always very interesting and well thought out!
This term we have the pleasure of hosting and mentoring four Practicum Students, three from Macquarie University and one from Swinburne. This of course is very necessary for them to build their experience, and also enjoyable for the teachers and enriching for the children.
Judith Donald Infants Mistress Mary McKendrick Primary Mistress
What a splendid way to end the Term and what a great success the Infants’ Shakespeare Festival was. The culmination of an enormous amount of work. Not only were the children bright and confidant, but they thoroughly enjoyed it! And the teachers of course enjoyed it when it was successfully over.
This final week also saw the farewell of Mrs. Alice Dawson, who leaves us to have a second child. She has been at John Colet for seven years, has done wonderful work with her classes and will be much missed.
Mrs. Tefay is doing well, and is now in Rehabilitation. She sends her regards and thanks for the flowers and warm wishes she has received. A most magnificent composite “Get Well” Card from the Lower First children was delivered to her, and received with moist eyes!
Best wishes from us for a safe and relaxing holiday.
Judith Donald Infants Mistress Mary McKendrick Primary Mistress
A week full of successes! The teachers have been very busy with Parent/Teacher Interviews, and these having been proceeding well. Shakespeare is steaming ahead, and all are looking forward to next week’s performances.
We have great success at both Debating – we won! – and Chess – we came 2nd in the Tournament and now move forward to the finals. Well done to those children and teachers.
Upper First had a very enjoyable excursion to Narrabeen to study the seashore.
Thursday evening saw a delightful and successful Music Recital, both of the Ensemble, the Singers and the individual Instrumentalists. Performing “in public” isn’t easy for some, and we commend the children for their courage. Thanks also to Rosy Davidson and Jodie Law for organising this event.
Sixth Class started on an adventure: they are learning the traditional dance the Maypole, and hope to perform it at the special event organised by the School of Practical Philosophy to celebrate its 50th Anniversary – A Gala Garden Party in October this year. This will be held in the gardens of the SoPP’s heritage property, Mahratta, in Wahroonga. We hope also to have a performance of the maypole at John Colet. More anon.
Reports have been posted and should be received in time for Parent Teacher Interviews.
During Assembly each week, children recite the School Motto, “Testare de Illa Luce” which means “To bear Witness of that Light”. This is taken from the Christian Scriptures, St. John’s Gospel Chapter 1, and refers to the coming of one of the world’s great teachers – Jesus Christ, whose precepts and teachings have enlightened millions over the last two millennia.
St. John refers to Jesus as being “the true light which lighteth every man that cometh into the world”. This is a reference to the pure consciousness that is “the light of every man”, the underpinning perfection in each of us. Bearing witness of this light means letting that light shine through our actions as they reflect in the school values of Stillness, Respect, Courage, Service and Respect. St. Matthew (5:16) says “Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works ..” Each of the four gospel–writers has a symbol (Eagle, lion, man and bull). The Crest shows the symbol of St. John which is an eagle – here ascending with the rays of light of the sun shining behind it. Enjoy a safe and happy long weekend.
Open Day was wonderful in every way: the weather was perfect, the classrooms looked wonderful, the performances were enjoyable, and if there needs to be an indicator as to how the children behaved themselves, here it is: The First Aid lady went home without even having had one customer – not even a bandaid. Well done everyone! Thank you to the many parents who worked indefatigably, thank you to those who spent money, thank you for the delicious lunch, thank you Sixth Class for your enthusiasm with the stalls, thank you teachers and children, and thank you to our Administrative Staff who put it all together to make a workable forum for our community to enjoy itself.. The standards were high!
It was a busy week with the Sanskrit Competition, the Northern Beaches Eisteddfod and Open Day preparation.
In the mornings when the teachers pause at 8 a.m. and discuss the day, we always say a prayer in Sanskrit and then in English. Responding to a request from some parents, we will highlight one of the Sanskrit prayers each fortnight and explain the English meaning: This week we are reciting “The Perfect Prayer”
Here is the English meaning:
This is Perfect. That is Perfect. Perfect comes from Perfect. Take Perfect from Perfect, And the remainder is perfect.
Another week of wonderful performances with more to come on Open Day, all warmed by the beautiful autumn weather. The children themselves shone at the Sanskrit Competition on Tuesday, and the event highlighted the courage and discipline of the children, and their generosity in heartily applauding each other. The individual winners are published elsewhere, and Upper 1st and 5th won the whole class section. Mid-week a small group of 4th Class children spent the day at Kinma School, taking part in the their Friendship Day, which was attended by several local schools. Thank you to those children who represented John Colet. The John Colet Choir was one of three schools who were Highly Commended at the Northern Beaches Eisteddfod, and our Head Chorister, Lila Jones, was given a special mention.
Children are to arrive at Open Day in full winter uniform at 9am. They should go to their classroom. Children should bring their school sports uniform in their sports bag to change into straight after the stage performances. (You may also wish to send in a small recess snack and drink.)
The stage performances start at 10am until 11am. After that time, children are free to enjoy the Open Day activities and show their parents around their classrooms. The classrooms will be manned from 11 a.m. to 12 midday and then from 1 pm to 2 pm. The Open Day concludes at 2pm.
Parents, please note that the children should stay with their teachers until the stage performances are over, and should not go the playground until this is over.
Please register for the Cyber Safety talk on 1st June (6.00 for 6.30) to be held at John Colet. Parents from local schools are also invited to this Rotary sponsored event.
We are counting down to Open Day on Sunday 28th May – the Class teachers and the Art Department are busily decking out the walls of the classrooms with showcase work, whilst the children are spending time on the preparations for the Sanskrit Competition this Tuesday 23rd May. This will be judged by distinguished Sanskritists Dr. Ramon Raghu and Mr. William Fox (Member of the JCS Board). We hope also to have present a visitor from the Indian Consulate. The Sanskrit Recitation is always a very special event.
Children attending after school Clubs have been reminded of the rules relating to behaviour at these Clubs. They are
Demonstrate the School Values
Show a positive attitude
Obey the instructors
Follow competition rules where applicable
Help tidy up and leave the area in good order
We look forward to a vigorous Working Bee this Sunday to prepare for Open Day.
Judith Donald Infants Mistress Mary McKendrick Primary Mistress
Naplan is over for another year, and everyone seemed to take it in their stride! Several children from John Colet School recently participated in the Gateways Programme hosted by Oxford Falls Grammar School. This is an inter-school Maths Workshop of four sessions, for Gifted and Talented children. A letter from the organisers was received by Mrs. Crewe commending the behaviour and focus of the John Colet participants. To quote: “Your students were an excellent reflection upon your school. You should be proud! The following children were noted as ‘stand-out’ students meaning they were particularly engaged in the workshops, demonstrated impressive understanding of mathematical concepts and were great contributors to the day as a whole. These children relished in the challenges of the day. Marlon Leforestier Morgan Armstrong-Jones Thomas Jeffries Shannon Hiscox Congratulations to all the children who participated! We are delighted to welcome Mrs. Tefay back from leave, although she has been seen at school the past three days, working with Mrs. Zoe Emanuel, Miss Cipollone and the children on their forthcoming Shakespeare performance. Mrs. Diane Renshaw (3rd Class) will be going on extended leave from this week, and will be replaced by Mrs. Mary Garrett, a former John Colet teacher, who has returned to us from Victoria to take Mrs. Renshaw’s class. She will also replace Mrs. Elizabeth McDermott (2M) and Mrs. Lea Connell (2C) later in the year when they successively take Long Service Leave. Library Bags: A reminder that Library bags are preferred by Mrs. Caban, as it keeps them protected and identifiable in the home. Mrs. Ladomatos has a supply in the Uniform Room.
Uniform alert!Full winter uniform please for the week beginning 15th May! Blazers to be worn to Monday Assembly. Long navy blue socks are to be worn with boys’ shorts. Mrs. Ladomatos has a supply in the Uniform Store.
Judith Donald Infants Mistress Mary McKendrick Primary Mistress
It has been a wonderful start to the Term: I spotted several children running ahead of their parents to get to class: so keen they were to be coming back to school! We began with an excellent Assembly and were regaled with reports from the children about the help they had given to their parents over the holidays. Our practice of Truthfulness this term begins with “Telling the full story” – giving the other person’s side and recognising another point of view.
French classes begin with a good turnout on Friday, and we now have two Mandarin classes. Girls in the 6th Class Sewing Club are racing ahead, and some have finished in half a term what previous groups have taken two or three terms to finish. A great job.
Staff: We have two new part-time members of staff for this term:
Mrs. Robyn Topp is teaching 5D on Thursdays, and comes to us with considerable experience in teaching: she also works part-time for the Primary English Teaching Association of Australia (PETAA): in her current position she works with K-6 teachers across Australia in Independent, State and Catholic schools to provide Professional Learning in various aspects of English, Literacy, Language and Literature. She works with NESA to register workshops, courses and conferences and deal with accreditation of NSW and ACT teachers K-6. We welcome her to 5th Class.
Mrs. Leisa Brown will be returning to JCS for the term as a Teachers’ Aide to replace Mrs. Taufique, who will be on leave. Mrs. Brown has formerly worked at JCS and elsewhere: she has considerable experience in the Multilit system. Welcome back!
Mrs. Jennifer Geary, a longtime Casual Teacher at JCS will be taking Lower First T two days a week, alongside Ms. Georgina Condos, who will increase her days from one to three per week until Mrs. Tefay returns.
Thank you to parents of Lower First for attending the Class Morning Tea recently: we had the added delight of seeing the class leaving for their first school excursion to Taronga Zoo, which was a success despite the weather.
It’s hard to believe that we are at the end of Term 1. We will change to winter uniform for Term 2, with a two-week cross-over period where summer or winter uniform may be worn, depending on temperatures.
Parents may be interested to learn that the John Colet Lunch Programme has recently been assessed by Ms Priyanka Sheth, a Paediatric Dietitian at Westmead Hospital. This is an extract from her Report, received earlier this term.
The current menu is providing a wide variety of nutritious foods which promotes healthy eating. This will ensure that children will meet their nutritional requirements for the proportion of the day when they are at school.
I would like to acknowledge the school for providing a nutritious multi-cultural menu for their students, for example the school offers Asian, Italian, Indian and Mexican cuisine. It is important to expose children to a variety of foods to avoid fussy eating, but also allow exploration of foods especially when the Australian culture is multi-cultural and there is no set ‘Australian’ meal.
FRENCH CLUB – Hooray! Mme Galiane Marterer is offering places in an after-school French Class in Term 2. This is to be held in the temporary Library (Music Centre) on Fridays from 3.15 to 4.15 p.m. Anyone who is interested, please contact Mme Marterer through her email address in the Weekly Note.
Mandarin Club extended Wonderful news that our after school Mandarin classes are being extended with Mrs Pau returning to take classes for those students who do not speak Mandarin in the home.