Upcoming events & Important Dates
Monday 12th Oct – Students return
19-23rd Oct – Parent teacher conferences: Kindergarten
Wednesday 24th Oct– School Tour: Primary Campus – 9.30am
26-30th Oct – Parent Teacher conferences: Elouera & Cooinda
Tuesday 27th Oct – Grandparents & Special Friends Day: Preschool Campus *Cancelled
Thursday 29th Oct – Grandparents & Special Friends Day: Primary Campus *Cancelled
Friday 30th Oct – Grandparents & Special friends day: Preschool Campus *Cancelled
Dear Parents and Carers,
I hope you are well and having a wonderful week.
As I reflect on the first three terms of 2020, I feel very fortunate to have such a strong community surrounding our wonderful school. Our children are progressing well, our entire team is dedicated and resolute in their attention to each and every child, and our families work hard to support each other, the school and their children.
Education is a complicated word. it means so much to so many. Each with their own interpretation of the true meaning. Here at Farmhouse Montessori School, we see education as a journey that allows our children to grow into the world with empathy, love, understanding and compassion. We want to see our children make educated decisions with care and compassion in mind.
As a school, we try to create environments and situations that enable our children to understand that experimentation and failure go hand in hand. That trying something new is part and parcel of learning and that it is absolutely OK to make mistakes.
Children need to be heard, they need to have a say in their education and a chance to make choices of their own without judgement. When a community is aligned in their understanding of what education means, the long term results are fantastic and I am proud to say that we are clearly aligned.
Our children will be the leaders of tomorrow and I feel that they will be the ones who will make the biggest difference. It will be our children who will welcome the needy, it will be our children who will call out inequality in the workplace, and it will be our children who will treat the environment as something we need to protect, not exploit.
Thank you again for being part of this wonderful journey we call education. Our future is in safe hands!
Have a wonderful holiday ahead.
– Gavin McCormack
Thank you for joining us and making the night truly one to remember. Although a very different version this year, it was no less fun!
ELOUERA | Stage 1 Infant Community
The children in the Elouera class love exploring the climbing frame and suspended balance beams in all different configurations. This week we turned part of the climbing frame upside down so there was a big hole where there would normally be a platform. It was so nice to watch each of the children problem-solve how to get across, and no-one asked for help from their educators! In the classroom and the outdoor environment, we are constantly observing the children’s interests and providing opportunities for them to extend their own learning and practice problem-solving skills. We were able to see each child work out how to get across the hole, they all attempted it without asking for help – demonstrating self-confidence in their own abilities and developing independence.
– Corinne, Debbie & Sarah
BURBANGANA | Stage 1
September is The Australian Koala Foundations ‘Save the Koala Month’. To recognise this we have been learning about the koala, it’s habitat, what it eats, how long it sleeps and what a marsupial is. Through our investigations we learned that koala’s are in danger of losing their habitat, not only through the recent bushfires but through land clearing and construction developments. As a group the children are very concerned about the koala’s becoming extinct like the dinosaurs and have been coming up with ways to let our government know we need to protect them.
Saving the Koala, or any animal or ecosystem begins with each individual person. Everyone, no matter how small, can do something to help. If each person did even one little thing, like encouraging their family to recycle or to save water or electricity, it would add up to a lot of help for the environment.
– Amanda & Teresa
COOINDA | Stage 1
A trip away with the family is an adventure when you are a child. When one student came back from out in the bush she brought a mysterious object with her. The class brainstormed what they thought it was and where it came from. Children use hypothesis, problem solving and investigations to try to make sense of their world.
– Jenny, Jo & Angela
AMAROO | OUTDOOR CLASSROOM
For children friends are an integral part of growing up and their social and emotional development. Recently we have celebrated R U Ok Day and Peace & Gratitude Day which have given us the opportunity to spend time thinking about what makes a good friend? Am I a good friend, do I listen? What is gratitude and what am I grateful for? The answers to these questions engage the children in conversation, story telling and give time for reflection. The answers are beautiful to hear and in so many cases the main thing children are grateful for are family and their friends and the simple things they do with the people they love. We made friendship bracelets, drew pictures, worked on projects together and wrote notes with a view that we don’t give to receive and how good we feel when we give to someone else.
Children learn the initial letter sounds by using the sandpaper letters and playing initial sound games. They are then presented with the alphabet boxes. These boxes enable children to spell out words and write whole sentences without thinking about using a pencil. They progress from the large alphabet box to the small alphabet box.
Children then learn to use a chalk/pencil and write on chalk boards or paper. We include writing in everyday situations, evaluating a book, inventing a story and in project work. When children have grasped most letter sounds, we move onto grammar boxes.
AIKYA | Stage 2
While term 3 is coming to an end, Aikya students have been busy engaged with not only in-class lessons but also self-directed learning with the Montessori material. Continued weekly bushwalks and outdoor learning and the foundation of Pottery Club have been a highlight. Some of the older students have also been hard at work perfecting their portfolios in preparation for transition to Yani.
A wide range of topics has featured this fortnight such as Ancient Egypt, native flowers featured on our springtime bushwalks, video sessions to observe other Montessori schools around the globe and of course continued studies on language and math. Projects continue to feature regularly as students explore a myriad of topics to engage their skills in processing information, writing, plus project planning and management. Music ended this term with a collective percussion session in the classroom which was a big hit among children.
– Harshitha, Toby, Phillipa & Thomas
YANI | Stage 3
The last few weeks of term have been exciting for us. Last week, the Year 5 and 6 students had a lesson on Aztect Ancient Civilizations, and it was extremely interesting. We decided to make a play to represent our follow up. They play was about Aztec culture and Hernan Cortes, and it was set in an Aztect market. We made amazing props, including a boat, and some of the Stage 2 students came to see it. We had a lot of fun!
To celebrate the 150th birthday od Maria Montessori, we leant how to make “worry dolls” with Philippa. Worry Dolls are part of ancient Guatemalan tradition. According to legend, Guatemalan children tell their worries to the Worry Dolls, placing them under their pillow when they go to bed at night. By morning, the dolls have gifted them with the wisdom and knowledge to overcome their worries.
We have been discussing The Stolen Generation at school, after reading the book “Home to Mother” for shared reading. As part of our learning, we have also been watching the movie Rabbit Proof Fence.
As part of our Math lessons, we have been working on tessellation. We loved experimenting with different materials to create patterns for this lesson.
This is the last week of term 3 and we are looking forward to the holidays. We hope everybody has a great time during the holidays.
By Mena, Leo, Milly and Pearl
– Laura & Jessica
Farmhouse | Primary OSHCare
Highlights over the last fortnight
We have been enjoying the Spring weather up on the grassy oval playing all sorts of group games. Besides the latest favourite “Yes, No Wait”, the children have enjoyed “Keeper of the Keys” and with such a bunch of creatives amongst us, of course, the game took on a whole new persona by the end…. the children took turns in weaving exciting and elaborate stories about how the keys came to be missing!
Quoits was another new challenge we found ourselves participating in – we can confidently say it is one of the games that looks a lot easier than it really is. It took about 10 minutes before anyone even got near the spike but alas everyone’s faith in the game was restored when a child got his first roped ring onto the spike! With our new found confidence, another two children hooped the target not too long after!
Our two new extended projects are up and running now. The children have started to design our Community Library Box; exploring where to locate the box and the challenges we might face, brainstorming the materials we will need and drafting up a letter to request permission with the Sydney Harbour Federation Trust (so cross your fingers and wish us luck!). It should be a fun project for the children to get some hands-on experience into building the box and sharing some of our much-loved books with our local community of readers.
The other ongoing project will be a full wall in our breakfast room dedicated to all things related to kindness and compassion. Through brainstorming with the children, the wall will feature a “Kindness Tree” that will be created out of recycled materials (a big nod to our mountainous pile of recycled boxes taking up way too much precious space). The children will be able to decorate the tree with cardboard leaves, flowers, birds with notes, messages, personal experiences, stories, quotes…. basically, any idea that relate to what it means to be kind and compassionate. And as one child so eloquently and beautifully summarised, “our tree will continue to grow and grow as more and more kindness is put into it” – how nice is that!
This week we will be collecting donations for the Grace Community Food care. Grace community Food Care is a non-profit organisation that enables low income earners and those who need support to access groceries at a low fee and to get bread, fruit & vegetables free of charge. Over the next two weeks we will be collecting non-perishable food items to donate to Grace City Care. A box will be kept in our OSHC room to store all donations. Some examples of what you could donate are:
- Spreads eg. Vegemite
- Canned vegetables
- Canned Tuna
If you would like more information about Primary OSH Care or our centre and how to enrol, please visit our website www.primaryoshcare.com.au
From Sarah, Ella and all the OSHC staff at Farmhouse Montessori OSHC Centre