Newsletter: Term 4, Week 2
Welcome back to everyone for the last term. Always a hectic but productive term for our school community. For those who could take time off work, I hope you enjoyed the change of routine. To our students, we hope that everyone is well rested and focused, ready for purposeful learning.
Summer Uniform / School Hats
Children will be required to wear their school hats during Term Four whenever they are outside. We have given the first two weeks to remember to bring their hats to school. Please ensure their names are clearly marked on their hats so they can be returned if misplaced. Students are also encouraged to apply sunscreen daily, before school, during recess breaks, and during outdoor activities.
Please also note that spring looks more like winter, so we will not have the 'official' changeover to summer uniform until Monday, October 31.
October is Mental Health Month in New South Wales, Victoria, and the ACT. World Mental Health Day is October 10. It is a timely reminder about the importance of investing time in supporting our mental health to better support our children's mental health and wellbeing.
Some ways to promote your own positive mental health include:
- telling your friends and family when things are a bit tough
- finding others who have been through something similar
- connecting with your community
- finding a health professional you trust
- giving your pet a cuddle
- sharing your stories with others
In keeping with the mental health theme, I thought this would be a timely reminder.
A psychologist walked around a room while teaching stress management to an audience. As she raised a glass of water, everyone expected they'd be asked the "half empty or half full" question. Instead, with a smile, she inquired: "How heavy is this glass of water?" Answers called out ranged from 8 oz. to 20 oz. She replied, "The absolute weight doesn't matter. It depends on how long I hold it. If I hold it for a minute, it's not a problem. If I hold it for an hour, I'll have an ache in my arm. If I hold it for a day, my arm will feel numb and paralyzed. In each case, the weight of the glass doesn't change, but the longer I hold it, the heavier it becomes." She continued, "The stresses and worries in life are like that glass of water. Think about them for a while, and nothing happens. Think about them a bit longer, and they begin to hurt. And if you think about them all day long, you will feel paralyzed – incapable of doing anything." It's important to remember to let go of your stresses. As early in the evening as you can, put all your burdens down. Don't carry them through the evening and into the night. Remember to put the glass down!
Over the next few weeks, classroom teachers will be implementing mandated Literacy and Maths testing. This is post-testing from the beginning of the year. The testing is implemented individually and online. The testing provides the teachers with valuable information on the children's progress from the beginning of the year. It also provides them with data to drive their teaching focus for the remainder of the year.
I have had several conversations with parents recently, enquiring about safe screen times for children.
The following is an article from the esafety commission;
How much is too much?
There is no magic figure. The right amount of screen time can depend on various factors like your child's age and maturity, the kind of content they are consuming, their learning needs and your family routine.
It can be easy to focus only on the clock, but the quality and nature of what they are doing online, and your involvement, are just as important.
Consider your child's screen use in the context of their overall health and wellbeing. For example, is online time getting in the way of their sleep and exercise? Is it impacting their face-to-face connections with family and friends? The answers to these questions will guide you and help strike the right balance of online and offline activities for your child.
Signs to watch for
Signs that your child's online activity may be harming them or your family include:
- less interest in social activities like meeting friends or playing sport
- not doing so well at school
- tiredness, sleep disturbance, headaches, eye strain
- changes in eating patterns
- reduced personal hygiene
- obsession with particular websites or games
- extreme anger when being asked to take a break from online activity
- appearing anxious or irritable when away from the computer
- becoming withdrawn from friends and family
- What to do if you are concerned
- Ask questions and listen
Some of the behavioural changes described above are a normal part of growing up, but if you are concerned your child is struggling, try to find out why — there may be underlying issues such as cyberbullying, friendship difficulties or mental health issues.
As part of your conversation, ask your child about how much time they spend online and explain why it is worrying and what they could miss out on.
Try not to show that you disapprove, or they might shut down communication altogether.
Talking to your child's school may also reveal academic or social issues, and the school may also be able to provide support.
Changes to Pandemic Orders
The Victorian Government has announced the end of the pandemic declaration and associated pandemic orders. New settings will apply from 11.59 pm on Wednesday, October 12 2022.
Requirements for close contact, like continually testing negative on a rapid antigen test (RAT), will become strong recommendations – joining the strong recommendation to wear a mask indoors, which will remain in place.
Changes to COVID-19 isolation requirements
It is strongly recommended that students:
Those who test positive for COVID-19 should stay home and isolate for five days.
Should not attend school after five days if still symptomatic.
Those who are symptomatic but have not tested positive should not attend school.
When students become symptomatic at school, their parents/carers will need to collect them.
Undergo testing for COVID-19.
COVID-19 reporting requirements
The Department of Health recommends that a person who tests positive for COVID-19 should inform those with whom they have recently been in contact, including their workplace, school and household.
Schools no longer have to alert their school community of positive cases.
Students who wish to wear a face mask will be supported, and we will continue to make face masks available for staff, students and visitors.
The Department of Health recommends that masks be worn by a person who is close to someone who has tested positive for COVID-19 when leaving home.
Additionally, the department recommends that someone with COVID-19 wear masks for ten days after a positive test when they need to leave home.
We will keep our COVIDSafe Plan in place, regularly reviewing and updating it as required. You will be informed of any updates via our newsletter.
Meet the Year 6's:
October is World Mission month. On Friday 28th October the Year 6 class will be preparing and running activities to raise money which will be donated to the Catholic Mission Australia. There will be lots of activities for all children to enjoy and they will cost a small amount of money to do, eg. ‘$1’ a go. Some of our activities will be: How many lollies in the jar, Disco, hair braiding, face painting, colouring competition, footy activities, biscuit decorating, talent show, photo booth and Tron. So make sure you gather up any small change you can and come along and have some fun while we raise money together. It will also be a casual clothes day – please bring a gold coin to pay for wearing casual clothes.
Basketball Ballarat Community Programs
Basketball Ballarat provide children with a fun and safe basketball experience that will serve as an introduction to a lifetime involvement in the game. A wide variety of introduction to basketball programs are ran by Basketball Ballarat, allowing children to start learning basketball as young as 4 years old.Basketball Ballarat’s introduction to basketball programs:
- Aussie Hoops – perfect for children aged 4 – 7 years
- Rookie Hoops – perfect for children aged 8 – 11 years
- All Abilities Rookie Hoops – perfect for children aged 5 – 18 years whom are living with a disability
Registrations are now open for all community hoops programs, with the programs starting the week beginning October 17 th .
For more information and to register: Community (nbl1.com.au)
For further details please contact Ethan Fiegert via email firstname.lastname@example.org or call reception on (03) 5338 1220