Dear Parents, Caregivers and Families
Kia ora, kia orana, talofa, malo e lelei, fakaalofa atu, hello and greetings
From the Principal
Testing….testing… we are checking to see where your children are at this week. I’m sure most of you remember the PAT tests from your school days- I certainly do. They are all done online now so very exciting to be using Chromebooks!
The Tabloids Day held last Friday was an awesome time for our Year 1-3 children. It was a beaut day, and we were able to set up our brand new gazebos bought courtesy of the Helping Hands and Andrew Rumbles from Bayleys Real Estate. Two other small country schools joined us – Tapora and Tauhoa, so it was lovely to see our children working together harmoniously with them. The House Captains and Deputies were fantastic leaders; and the seniors who organised and ran the games did a top job. The Helping Hands and a band of parents cooked sausages and supplied other yummy treats so everyone was happy, and they raised just over $600.00 to go to the school. Much appreciated! Thanks also to Miss McGuinness, Mrs Bartlett, and Mrs Forno-Watson for organising/overseeing this event.
Funds raised from the Helping Hands have also paid for new flags to use on our sports days and school trips. I will take photos the first time we use them. There are ones for each House, 1 for the school, and 1 for our sponsors Bayleys Real Estate. They look brilliant!
As you know most of our children travel to and from school by bus. We have expectations for the children when on the bus, and this is monitored carefully. Can I also ask that you as parents put in expectations for how your children wait at the bus stops, and how they get onto the bus. We had a near miss the other morning when one of our weenies ran across in front of the bus as it was going to move. Luckily the bus driver saw the child, but it did give her an awful fright. So, I would appreciate it if you as parents could carry on the safety messages around buses when dropping off and picking your children up. We will be having more safety lessons from the Travel-wise group later in the year.
Values Awards this week: Noah Inger Room 3 for Growth; Arley Baker Room 7 for Respect; Jacko Hodgetts Room 2 for Ownership; Kyle Watson-Walker Room 6 for Working together harmoniously. Well done you cool kids!
Our Year 7 & 8 children had their HPV/Boostrix immunisations yesterday. Schools are beginning to get information from the Ministry regarding Covid 19 immunisations. I will relay this information when we are instructed to release it, so that you can make an informed decision as to whether your child(ren) get immunised or not.
Some House Captains and Deputies are going to attend the Board meeting tomorrow night. They have a proposal for the Board to get permission to build a community stall to sell the produce that Tomarata School produces like eggs, tomatoes, honey etc. I am very proud of them, as it is quite a daunting task to do, but they are very up for the challenge. That is their project this year- to design and build the Tomarata Produce Stall. What a great bunch of community minded kids and an example of what Tomarata School is all about. Their project will also cover reading, writing, maths, technology and science to create the stall, alongside Financial Literacy and Advertising. This is real contextual learning.
On Friday we have our whole school assembly in the afternoon and then our first Disco in FOREVER !! How exciting. I know that we have lots of parents who have volunteered to help on the night which is very much appreciated. As we are now smaller than before in numbers it will be held in the School Hall too, which makes it even more fun. I hope to see you all there!
Lucas Davis has had a birthday this week but has been sick with a cold . Hope you managed to enjoy yourself despite the sniffles Lucas.
Our PB4L focus this week has been about walking around the school in an appropriate manner. This is good practice that spills over into walking around places in our community like shops, Libraries, Museums, even the Zoo. There was great hilarity when Mrs B and I demonstrated how NOT to walk in a line. ( I still maintain I should have been the leader!)
I hope you all saw the wonderful article in the Mahurangi Matters about our honey extraction efforts. There is a lovely photo of Teilah Melrose in her bee suit as well. The article is on our Brag Wall in the office. Room 6 is now designing labels to go on the jars of honey and doing a maths exercise in how much the jars should sell for. It is delicious honey by the way!
The sentence in our Vision I would like to focus on this week is ‘ No Kiwi school would excel without embracing biculturism and the glorious environment we have on our doorstep’. The first part of this sentence is one that has high importance in New Zealand education at the moment. We are a bi-cultural race, and always will be. Our students need to understand what that looks, feels and sounds like. The Ministry of Education have instructed all schools to place emphasis on children knowing about what biculturism means, and more specifically on Te Tiriti o Waitangi versus The Treaty of Waitangi; and New Zealand Histories, especially of the area their school is situated. I have reached out to Ngati Manuhiri who are the iwi Tomarata school affiliates with, and they are coming to visit to help us achieve good knowledge and balance in our school for biculturism. Exciting times!
With regard to the second part of the sentence I have heard some comments like…why are we concentrating on bees and chickens instead of writing and maths. Well, I say, take a look around the environment that surrounds Tomarata School. What do you see? Farms, crops, animals, land and countryside. This is the environment in which your children are growing up. This is where they live. The Government have tasked schools to develop what they term Local Curriculum Plans. Simply explained that means, develop learning for your school based on where the school is situated, and what the children are most likely going to be involved with or want to learn about. We are a small country school, and that is why we have chickens, an orchard, vege gardens, bees, etc for our children to learn about and become kaitiaki of. I would hazard a guess that many of our children may grow up to become farmers or horticulturalists or have gardens and chickens on their properties. Writing, reading and maths, not to mention Science are integral parts of the learning involved around all these areas in our school.
Finally my quote of the week:
Feeling guilty about your kid watching TV? Just put the captions on. BOOM !!! Now they’re reading.
Have a great weekend!
Key Dates for this Term
If you are wanting to play netball this season please return your forms to office
Tomarata School Hall 5.30pm – 7.00pm 26th March
Quiz and Auction night. 14th May 2021 tickets available at the school office
Tomarata Playcentre Tues, Thurs and Fridays 9.30am to 12pm 09 423 9074 tomarata@Playcentre.org.nz