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Writing & Speaking


Commemorative Crosses Project

John Colet School has participated in the Centenary Commemorative Crosses Project. It is a project initiated through the Australian War Memorial commemorating the Centenary years of ANZAC 2014-2018. The students were given the opportunity to reflect on those Australians who sacrificed their lives in war and conflict in the First World War. Their thoughts and reflections were then put in the form of short messages written on small wooden crosses, which the Australian War Memorial will arrange to be laid on war graves and memorials where Australian servicemen and women are buried throughout Europe and many other countries.
Students engaged in this activity with great respect and understanding of what the project meant.
Thank you to the students and teachers for participating.  Some of the class who took part are pictured below.

With thanks
Elizabeth McDermott
Teacher and project coordinator


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Categories: Writing & Speaking, John Colet


Greek Day

Our annual celebration of all things Greek was another great success this week.

The day rounds out 4th classes' study of Ancient Greece.  Students dress up, and parents come in to help run fun Greek activities such as making mosaics, masks, dolmathes (vine leaves wrapped around delicious morsels), Greek inspired puzzles and even some ancient Olympic events.

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Categories: Writing & Speaking, Shakespeare & Drama


Pyramid DIY

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Continuing with their unit on Ancient Egypt Year 3 have been busy working on their projects: constructing a model of a pyramid.  To go inside their pyramids the children are also making a model of a sarcophagus as well as some of the treasures that might have been buried with the Pharaoh. On the wall of their pyramids they are writing a decipherable message in hieroglyphs! Watch this space for photographs of their completed projects in Week 10.       

Categories: Writing & Speaking, John Colet


Upper First out and about at the zoo

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Our Upper First classes completed the ‘Backyard to Bush’ Workshop at the Education Centre of Taronga Zoo this week. 

This fits with our unit of Science on ‘Living Things’, their needs in order to survive, and how they help us and we help them. It also linked with Geography, ‘Places and Spaces’, pets in the backyard, Indigenous plants, Australian bush and the farmyard.

And we had a lot of fun!


Categories: Writing & Speaking, Science & Maths, John Colet


Describing the Medusa

Creative writing


With terrifying poisonous snake hair and glowing bright red eyes that turn anything to stone with a mere glance, Medusa is perhaps the most feared monster in the land. She has monstrous wings and shining bronze claws that can rip through solid iron. Medusa was once a beautiful maiden with flowing gold hair and blue eyes that shimmer in the morning sun. Then in a fiery rage, Athena the beautiful goddess of wisdom turned her into a Gorgon, a monster uglier than the black of hell. Upset at the loss of her beauty, she became so overwhelmed with evil. This evil twisted and turned her heart until it hardened, cold as a stone in the early morning.

By Hartley E
4th J


Medusa was as cunning as a snake, her red eyes dimly lit up like the Luna eclipse. Her long nails are rough like sandstone and she has long lively snakes for hair that carry the most deadly poison. She is old and wrinkly but she has as much energy as a child. She loves the art of the kill. When she decides she wants you dead, you better quickly run! Medusa’s curse makes her selfish and quick thinking. When she puts you to sleep you will see it coming from a mile away. Even her smell can paralyse you. Her rage is stronger than fire.

By Emma S
4th J

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Categories: Writing & Speaking, John Colet


Mapping the school

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Today Upper First C and M in Geography explored the school identifying the natural and constructed features. It was interesting discovering features and discussing their place in the school. After the field trip Upper First drew pictures of the school.

Categories: Writing & Speaking, Science & Maths, John Colet


Video time capsules

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During the holidays in Teachers' Week the teachers had professional development with Apple and learned about using the iPad App ‘Green Screen’. This App allows you to use the iPads to record videos of people in front of green screen and project yourself in different locations. This term 6th class has been experimenting with this function to create ‘time capsule’ videos of themselves.

Students recorded each other’s responses to a range of questions, from "What subject do you most want to improve on this year? and "What do you think you will be?" to "Which school value do you think is most important?"  Teacher Miss Cipollone says the classes will review their recorded responses at the end of the year to see how well they achieved their goals and see how much they had grown!

Categories: Writing & Speaking, John Colet


Penpals in England

5th class has joined up with a school in Birmingham (in the UK) in order to become penfriends. Last week we received our letters from the children and it was very exciting reading all about their hobbies, pets and people in their families. We used Google Earth to explore the area where they live and we were even able to go down to street level and 'stand' in their playground! After that we visited their school website and took a look at all the afterschool clubs and activities which are on offer at The Oaks Primary. We spent our writing lessons writing postcards to them. How excited will the children from Birmingham be when they receive our mail?!

Mrs Tomicki

Categories: Writing & Speaking, John Colet


Book lovers welcome!

On Tuesday mornings before school, an enthusiastic group of students has been meeting to discuss their favourite books. The book club has been trialed this term with predominantly 4th class students and is run by John Colet parent Liz K.
The children are learning how to engage in a discussion where opinions differ on everything from how to pronounce Magog through to whether or not books should be made into movies.
There have been some entertaining debates and insightful commentary but most of all, lots of laughs.
“The best thing about book club is hearing other people’s views on a book. You get to hear a different perspective that you may never have learnt on your own.”  
“We learn about new books.”
"It teaches you to share your ideas in a way that you usually wouldn’t do at school.”
In the final session this term, the children brought in a book to swap with another member for the holidays; enabling the children to maintain their connectedness through the break.
There is a very long list of books the children want to cover next term! The plan is to build on book week and look at books by Belinda Murrell and Mark Greenwood, as well as another book from the Septimus Heap Series.
To register your interest for next term, talk to Liz or 4th class teacher Mrs Tomicki.  Priority will be given to existing members.

Categories: Chess & Clubs, Writing & Speaking, John Colet


Great effort in ICAS English at John Colet School

Congratulations to Thomas J (4th T) and Scout H (6th S) for their High Distinctions in ICAS English and to Henry B (6th S) Luke C (6th K) Rushil D (6th S) Alethea F (4th T) Isabella G (3rd D) Callum H (5th R) Ella K (4th T) Aaron L (5th C) Michael T (4th T) Jasmin W (6th K) Elizabeth W (3rd D) and Misha Y (3rd D) for their Distinctions. 


John Colet School students from 3rd to 6th classes may choose to sit ICAS exams.  45 JCS students sat ICAS English this year.

Categories: Writing & Speaking, John Colet


4th class makes history come alive



This term 4th class have been studying Early Settlers and The First Fleet. They were asked to use a plastic bottle to make a person who would have lived during that time.

The bottle had to be dressed up and three objects which the person may have used during their life had to be attached.

4th class were also asked to write a biography of their chosen character and give reasons for their choice.

We have a lovely selection of convicts, Governor Phillips, Captain Cooks and Bennelong.

Please come and have a look at our plastic bottle people, they are amazing and VERY creative.

Categories: Writing & Speaking, John Colet


ICAS Writing results

Well done to all students who took part in the ICAS Writing exam this year.  Forty three students took part, and three High Distinctions and six Distinctions were awarded to our students.

Congratulations to Kai P, (5th C) Wendy W, (5th C) and Scout H (6th S) for their High Distinction awards and to Mi Mi P (5th C) , Jack H (5th C), Leo G (5th R), Callum H (5th R), Alexandra R (6th K) and Marcus M (6th K) for their Distinctions.

What is ICAS?

The International Competitions and Assessments for Schools (ICAS) are independent skills-based assessments with a competition element.  A new ICAS test is developed annually for each subject in each year level by subject matter experts. All ICAS tests are reviewed by experienced teachers to ensure that they accurately assess students’ skills and are relevant to what they are learning at school.
ICAS tests are sat at the student’s school and are invigilated by teachers under normal examination conditions.

John Colet School students in Years 3 - 6 may choose to sit ICAS tests.

Categories: Writing & Speaking, John Colet


Big week ahead with Book Week

Book week is almost upon us and we've got an exciting list of events lined up to help us celebrate!

Visiting Authors: We a very fortune to have three published authors coming to the school next week to speak to the children. Heather Miller, Belinda Murrell and Mark Greenwood will all be visiting throughout the week and speaking to the children about their work as authors.

Heather Miller has written a delightful book called “David, Jack and the Rescue of Grace”. It is a picture book that tells the story of David, his pet mouse, Jack,  and their quest to rescue Grace, the cow, who is stuck on top of a tree following a flood on their farm.

Belinda Murrell is an  internationally published children's author. Her 21 books include The Sun Sword fantasy trilogy as well as a newly-released Lulu Bell series for younger readers. She is also known for her collection of other timeslip tales including The Sequin Star, The River Charm, The Locket of Dreams, The Forgotten Pearl, The Ruby Talisman and The Ivory Rose.

Mark Greenwood is an Australian author with a passion for history. His books The Legend of Moondyne Joe and The Legend of Lasseter's Reef have won the West Australian Premier's Award for children's books. Ned Kelly, and The Green Sash won the West Australian Young Readers’ Book Award and Simpson and His Donkey was a CBCA Honour Book and a USBBY Outstanding International Book.

If your children have a copy of a book from any of these others they are encouraged to bring them in and they can get them personally signed.
Come dressed as your favourite character - On Wednesday, 19th of August, the children and the teachers are encouraged to come dressed as their favourite book character. Please bring in your books so they can be shared and discussed with class members.

Book Drive - Throughout the week we will be collecting used and new children's books that we will then donate to The Asylum Seeker Resource Centre, who run literacy programs for refugees. The collection box will be located in the breeze way.


Categories: Writing & Speaking, John Colet


Book Week Mania: Wednesday August 19th

Book week mania comes to John Colet on August 19th!

Teachers and students please come to school dressed as your favourite book character, and bring along your favourite book to share and discuss with your class. Everyone is encouraged to bring a gold coin donation, and all proceeds from the day will go to a children's literacy charity.  The sky's the limit when it comes to how everyone chooses to dress up; keep it simple or go all out - it's up to you! All costumes will be appreciated but there will be no prizes for best dressed.

During book week (week 6), we'll also be holding a book drive. Have  a look through your book shelves and bring along any children's books you no longer need. There'll be a collection box in the breeze way where you can donate your books.

If you'd like to have a look at which books are on the shortlist for 2015, you can find the finalists on the The Children's Book Council of Australia's website: http://cbca.org.au/ShortList-2015.htm

Categories: P&F, Writing & Speaking, John Colet


Premier's Reader Challenge going strong

32 children have now completed their challenge which means over 640 books have been read! How amazing is that?
Don’t forget to log on to the website and complete your student reading record. It’s easy to do and there are lots of different choices and authors to choose from. Ask your teacher if you need a log on or password.
The PRC finishes on 21st August so there is still time for all those great readers out there at John Colet to sign up.
Jemima from 4th class says: The PRC is good because it encourages you to find new authors and read books that you didn’t know about
Max from 4th class says: The PRC is great for children to really get them reading. We have discovered new authors and it has become the new craze in our class!


Categories: Writing & Speaking, John Colet

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