Dear Families and Friends of St John’s,
I hope you all enjoyed an extra long weekend. I had a great weekend at the T20 Women’s cricket match and watching Katy Perry with our children. Thank you to our school community for supporting our closure day on Tuesday. The day was well spent at school with Mel from Project Thrive. Our focus was around positive Education and strength based practices. It was a reaffirming day for us and an exciting day which added strategies to our bank. In a world that seems so connected, data is showing a feeling of disconnect and rise of mental health problems. This of course is extremely concerning for all and we feel an absolute need to respond to this. We aim to respond to this by building strong relationships with ourselves, each other and our wider community.
This Friday will see us celebrating Harmony Day and standing against bullying and violence. The continuing message of Harmony Day is ‘Everybody Belongs’ and it’s annual observance aims to encourage inclusiveness, respect and belonging for all Australians, regardless of cultural background and celebrate core Australian values. We are encouraging children to wear orange, orange is the colour chosen to represent Harmony Week. Traditionally, orange signifies social communication and meaningful conversations. It also relates to the freedom of ideas and encouragement of mutual respect.
The National Day of Action against Bullying and Violence, held on the third Friday of March each year, is an opportunity for Australian schools to highlight their everyday work to counter bullying and violence.
This week we have had the experiences at Bullen Bullen. The Wurundjeri people (Woi-wurrung language group) are the Traditional Custodians of Melbourne and surrounding lands. The Wurundjeri people cared for Country since Bunjil, the great Eagle and Balliyang the bat, created our land and people. Students experienced a Wurundjeri guided tour of the Margaret Leister Trail and also participated in indigenous activities including the crushing of ochre, emu feather art, hand printing, colourings with charcoal and an artefact display.
Prep to 2 children will connect with the environment through nature play and learn about Aboriginal culture and unique Australian wildlife next week. In Nature Play the Wurundjeri Way, students are immersed in the natural world, where they are encouraged to play, explore and discover. Students will engage their senses as they investigate habitats, uncover animal characteristics, interact with Aboriginal artefacts, listen to dreaming stories, create art and learn about native wildlife and plants and the Wurundjeri connections to them. Through guided discussions and exploration, students will learn about how plants, animals and people are all connected. They will discover what makes this land unique and how to respect and care for the environment – just as the Wurundjeri people do.
Exciting times ahead for all.
As advised by the Australian Government Department of Health, from Friday 6 March 2020, a person is required to self-isolate in circumstances where they have been exposed to any confirmed novel coronavirus case, or when returning to Australia from:
o Mainland China (not including Hong Kong, Macau and Taiwan) on or after Saturday 1 February 2020
o Iran, on or after Sunday 1 March 2020
o South Korea (Republic of Korea), after 9 pm Thursday 5 March 2020.
Coronaviruses are a large family of viruses, which may cause illness in animals or people. COVID-19 (coronavirus) is a new virus that can cause an infection in people, who may experience fever and flu-like symptoms such as coughing, sore throat, fatigue and in some cases shortness of breath and a severe respiratory illness. It is recommended that schools promote the prevention of the spread of coronavirus by encouraging the use of strategies that assist in minimising the spread of any respiratory illness:
Those with symptoms such as a fever (temperature above 38°C), cough, sore throat or congestion, should not come to school, and stay home until symptoms have subsided for at least 24 hours (without the use of fever-reducing or cough-suppressing medication).
o Anyone becoming ill in this manner – should inform the school immediately.
o Avoid close contact with people who have a respiratory illness.
o Practice good respiratory etiquette – cover a cough or sneeze with a tissue and discard.
o Avoid touching the eyes, nose and mouth.
o Wash hands thoroughly using soap and water, or use hand sanitiser.
o Increase the cleaning of frequently touched surfaces such as desks, countertops, keyboards, computer mice, telephone handsets, handrails and lift buttons.
We welcome you to join us this Friday 13th March at 2:45 pm as Home Group Linda leads us in prayer. The theme for the gathering is ‘faith’, we will reflect on the faith shown by St Patrick and acknowledge the many faiths present within our St John’s community.
Josephite Celebration – Tuesday 24th March 6:30 pm
A letter is being sent home tomorrow with your child to invite your family to celebrate the contribution the Josephite Sisters have made to our community. Please return the reply slip for catering purposes. We are looking forward to celebrating Mass with the wider St John’s community and we extend a warm welcome to families to join us.
Sacrament of Reconciliation
We held a Sacramental Evening last week for families preparing to celebrate the Sacraments of Reconciliation and Eucharist. It was a wonderful opportunity for families to reflect together on the meaning of the Sacraments and to spend time together as a faith community. We keep these children and their families in our prayers.
We continue to support Project Compassion throughout Lent. Project Compassion is an opportunity for us to take action on one of the three core elements of Lent (prayer, fasting and almsgiving). Collection boxes are located in home group spaces and at the main office. If you have some spare change to donate it would be very much appreciated. Visit https://lent.caritas.org.au/#blank to find out more about the work that Caritas does to make a difference to others both here in Australia and overseas.
Holy Week Prayer Gathering
We will be gathering as a whole school to reflect on the events of Holy Week on Thursday 26th March. This prayer gathering will begin at 2:30 pm and will be led by Home Group Mitch. If you’re available please join us.
Harmony Day and Bullying. No Way! Day
This Friday the 13th of March, St. John’s will be recognising Harmony Day and Bullying. No Way! Day. On this day, we invite all students to wear something orange to show our support for diversity and inclusion. Students will be exploring the themes of the day related to harmony, kindness, acceptance, diversity and peace in their classrooms. Grades 3-6s will also participate in a workshop exploring online kindness and inclusion.
School Closure Day Friday the 20th March – NO STUDENTS (Maths Progressions)
OSHClub will be taking bookings
Year’s 3-5 Excursion to Bullen Bullen
Enthralling Vietnamese Bamboo Circus!
Last Thursday, Grades 3 to 6 were captivated by the enthralling bamboo circus known as A O Lang Pho, created by the founders of Nouveau Cirque du Vietnam. Travelling by bus, we ventured into the city towards the Melbourne Arts Centre, anticipating the experience.
The circus was unlike anything we had witnessed before; watching bamboo bend without breaking while amazing acrobats perform incredible feats of strength. The circus included live music, contemporary dance and a changing set that conveyed the beauty of Vietnamese culture.
For our Grade 3 and 4 community, it was an opportunity to experience how a culture celebrates diversity and comes together, which linked into their inquiry about community and culture.
We interviewed a few people in the Grade 6 community on their thoughts.
Andy – “A great way to show the Vietnamese culture without words.”
Charles- “ It was impressive how they use bamboo for all of these high jump flips”.
Ethan- “I did not know that my culture could do that and I thought that the bamboo would break.”
From the St John’s Media Team
After several weeks of cross country training the St Johns runners performed extremely well at the Interschool Cross Country Race last Friday 6th March. The year 3-4’s completed 2km’s and year 5-6’s completing 3km’s. There was grit, determination and a lot of red cheeks on show throughout the event.
Congratulations to all students who took part and tried their best and a special acknowledgement to Alanii, Noah and Tom who finished in the top 10 and Joanna Bua who came 4th in her race and qualified for Division’s.
These past two weeks at OSHClub, our focus has been on nature and collaboration. Children were creative using basic natural materials to make their own nature and animal art installation which
they formally exhibited to their peers. Others worked together to make their own surprise-reveal sand paintings. Children have also become budding cartoonists, learning from our special
guest Matt from Toonworld. Cartooning can be a great way to boost confidence and learn that there are no mistakes when it comes to art. We still have two more visits, running on
Friday 13th and 20th of March.
We are pleased to announce that OSHClub will be running the first ever Holiday Program at St John’s over the Term 1 holidays (Monday 30th March-Thursday 9th April).
Our program will include an excursion to Yarra Bend Mini Golf and GoClimb Coburg. Enrolments for the Vacation Program are now open. Bookings are also open to primary school age students beyond the
St John’s community. If you have friends or family in need of childcare in this period, please let them know about the Vacation Program.
Megan and Novita
St John’s OSHClub
We have many dates coming, please ensure you are on Flexibuzz and check the calendar on our website for upcoming events. Do you need a paper copy? Please collect one from our office.
Fri 13: National Day of action against Bullying & Harmony Day – Wear Orange!
Fri 13: Prayer Gathering 2.45 pm led by HG Linda
Tues 17: P-2 Excursion to Healesville – POSTPONED
Wed 18: Division Swimming
Thur 19: Yr 3 Sacrament of Reconciliation 6:30 pm
Fri 20: SCHOOL CLOSURE DAY – NO STUDENTS (Maths Progressions) OSHClub will be taking bookings
Tue 24: Josephite Mass 6.30 pm
Thur 26: Holy Week Prayer Gathering 2.30 pm – All welcome
Thur 26: Grade 3/4 Sleepover
Fri 27: Last day Term 1 – Finish at 1 pm (wear House Colours)
Tue 14: First Day Term 2
Wed 22: School Photo Day
Fri 24: Yr’s 5 & 6 Interschool Sport
Fri 1: Yr’s 5 & 6 Interschool Sport
Tue 5: Yr’s 5 & 6 Parent Information Night – Sex Education Australia 5.30 pm
Fri 8: SCHOOL CLOSURE DAY – NO STUDENTS (ASD PL Day for Teachers) OSHClub will be taking bookings
Fri 15: Yr’s 5 & 6 Interschool Sport
Fri 22: Yr’s 5 & 6 Interschool Sport
Fri 29: Yr’s 5 & 6 Interschool Sport