This week’s newsletter

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Hi Everyone,

Thank-you to everyone who helped to load buckets, wheel barrows and pockets to get that three ton of sand moved off the basketball court into our sand pits. It is always such a joy for the kids when we get new sand!

Thank-you to all our wonderful early risers  especially Tracy for helping with the shopping, beautiful set-up, delicious cooked breakfast and doing the rather tedious tidy-up at the end for our Welcome Breakfast this morning.

Thank-you to everyone for being mindful of our quiet time in the office. We have had some very productive working and thinking time this week!

Farewell to the Fisher family who are off on a new adventure to New Zealand. We wish you lots of joy and fun in your new home. Remember to take a trip to the giant  Kauri forest up north  it is a very ancient and special place.


Have you signed up for Our Conflict Resolution Course?

 A workshop full of practical skills and new ideas about how to;

-resolve conflicts

-build relationships

- manage your own baggage

- keep up with yours kids who are now running rings round you with their developing CR skills     

Office- the office quiet time is between 9.45am and 2.30pm and 4pm onwards unless you have a pre-arranged appointment. Outside of these hours you are always welcome or anytime if it is an issue that cannot wait.

FEES – Have you paid your fees that includes CASP? They were all due last week.

 If you have not received an invoice I suggest you drop me an email


2nd Mar First School Council Meeting 6.30pm

7th & 14th Mar Conflict Resolution Course

Love Julianna

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How many of you love Currambena? We all love Currambena.

When I was thinking about coming here, I thought about my husband David. The reason that Currambena reminded me of my David and David reminded me of Currambena is because Currambena happened because of my David — our David. He was the one who visited the school that was here before, spoke to Lane Cove Council and convinced them to let Currambena happen. He was the one those first Currambena parents went to for guidance and encouragement.

Thinking about David and Currambena for some reason made me think of him as a boy. If anyone had met him then, could they have seen he would be the daddy of a school, actually the father of a number of schools.

Ding, ding. As a boy, he used to sit under the kitchen table with old tram tickets and pretend that he was the tram conductor welcoming people on board.

When he got a bit older and wanted to buy himself a bike, he used to hop onto trams with newspapers under his arm calling out the names of the papers — Sun! Age! Argus! He’d ride for a stop selling the papers and then repeat the process. He saved his money and bought his bike.

When he was a bit older he played lacrosse. It looks a bit like hockey, but there’s a scoop at the end of the stick. I used to hear about how aggressive he was — you know, when the umpire wasn’t looking.

He was a kid who had to work to get whatever he wanted. When he wanted something, he’d take risks to get it.

He was the first to get a travelling scholarship to get his doctorate. In those days it wasn’t easy to leave one’s family and friends behind for months and months. There were no mobile phones. There was no email or Skype. Telephones were not used much. When you went far away, that was it. You lost touch.

I guess the things that made David the daddy of this school could indeed be seen when he was a kid. He liked to include people. He had a strong desire to create situations that benefited other people. He had a way of calling out and getting people’s attention. He wasn’t afraid to go for it. He had passion.

I think he would want me to say to you that if you feel passionate about something, if you have the enthusiasm and strong desire to achieve, you should go for it. Don’t let anything stand in your way. Take that lacrosse stick just like David did and go for goal.

(This is a copy of the speech that Margot made to School Meeting on Monday 23rd February. David died last November. His obituary was in SMH this week.)

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Hi Everyone,

The whole preschool attended school meeting on Monday to welcome our special guest Dr Margot Sims. Her late husband David Cohen was one of the founders of Currambena who unfortunately passed away last year after a long battle with illness. We sang the Currambena song to her and she told the children a wonderful story of how David, the Daddy of Currambena started our wonderful school many years ago!

This week in preschool we have started work on conflict resolution during group time, which, as you already know is a big part of the Currambena philosophy and a big part of being at Currambena! As we have many new children joining preschool this year we are finding that some children are experiencing difficulty when playing with others and can tend to be physical rather than verbalising what they need from each other. Through the use of puppet role-plays the children have been using their divergent thinking skills to problem solve what they would do to resolve certain situations amicably. You can see their ideas and thoughts in the group time write ups and drawings displayed around the preschool.

The children have continued to enjoy cooking experiences this week. They assisted Michael in making banana pikelets that were then quickly devoured by everyone. We have also continued on with the finger painting experience as many children are continuing to enjoy the sensory exploration this experience lends itself to.

We had our first fire drill for the year on Wednesday with children evacuating preschool and meeting up at the blue umbrella and having their name marked off in the record time of 1 minute 30 seconds! Please remember that it is a government requirement that you sign your child in and out of preschool everyday. We check that each family has signed and often find that parents and carers have gotten. If they are attending CASP in the afternoon, please write CASP in the sign out section of our sheet, and if they do not have a permanent booking in CASP please go to the CASP sign in and out sheet and write your child’s name down so CASP and preschool know where they are going in the afternoon.

Children’s interest in writing and drawing has been a big part of the preschool day. We are extending on this with individual children as well as in group situations with collaborative group pictures and loads of letters to the tree fairy who tries her best to respond to everyone as soon as she is able! We plan to place out a child sign in and sheet for children from next week. This will be on a table opposite to where parents and carers sign their child in.

As always thank you to all the washing fairies that take our laundry home to wash and to everyone that helped with the sand especially Michael and Blake who carted many wheelbarrows of sand to fill all our sandpits!

Lastly Wendy and Chris are running a unique conflict resolution course on 7th & 14th March. If you would like to attend please email Wendy on or


Katrina, Chris and Michael


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Half way through the term, already!!

A quick one this week, as I rush this through for publication. This week we continued with our Paper Plane topic and had the children work in groups. They needed to experiment with a chosen design and then change either the size of the paper, the colour of the paper or the type of paper and test the results. We measured and prepared the basketball court for the flight path. There was some serious plane flying on this afternoon and it was wonderful to see the children sharing their folding and flying expertise with each other. In Maths this week we did some of our own measuring and discussed the difference between centimeters and meters. Our focus over the next couple of weeks will be using different strategies to add and subtract. And the elders have also been practicing ’rounding numbers’ and using the symbol for ‘more than’ and ‘less than’.

Using a list of the first 100 and 200 ‘Sight Words’ I have been assessing most of the children on their ability to read. Unlike the previous 2 years ie. Kindy and Year One, I don’t send home daily readers. However, I do have the expectation that children are either reading to themselves or to you every day! I pointed out at the parent/teacher night that we have books in our class room that are colour coded for reading ability. If you are unsure of what your child is able to read, where they are at, and what they need to be reading, please email me or come and see me, so we can arrange a time to discuss this.

As this is Miss Lucy Fisher’s last day today, we are going to watch the animated version of “The BFG”. This was a request put forward when we first started reading it and Lucy asked if we could watch it before she leaves…. what could I say?! We will also be making/creating our Dream Jars and the children will write down some of their own dreams, for life!!

A reminder that Chris P and Wendy are running a Conflict Resolution course over 2 weekends on Saturday, March,7th and 14th.

Thank you to everyone that was involved with our Social Breakfast this morning. It was gorgeous!

There have been few teething issues with the children’s ‘web pages’. We have had a discussion about computer use in the classroom and appropriate behaviour when using the web. If you would like to know what we all agreed to, so this can be followed through with at home, then please come and look at our agreement ‘door’ in the class room.

Next week we have Abby (Rory’s mum from Louise’s class) coming to help us construct paper trees!

I think that’s all for this week!

Have a lovely weekend,

Love, Sarah.



Posted in Sarah's class | Comments Off

Hello All
It’s good to be back, thank you to Tammy and Sarah for looking after the Scary Lollypops during my absence.
Ice Excursion
As part of our ice project we are planning to go to Macquarie Ice rink on Tuesday the 10th of March and we need help! We need parents to transport children to the rink and supervise while there. We will be leaving school at 9.30am and returning at 1pm. If you can help with the excursion please talk to Sue, Blake or Nicola ASAP. We really need parents to transport the children as hiring a bus would make the excursion too expensive.
Ice Projects
We did an experiment to see what happened when downward pressure is applied to a wire placed over an ice cube. Somehow the wire cut/melted the ice, but then the severed ice froze over wire as the wire kept moving through the ice cube. We are still wondering how and why it happened. We also read a book about the origin and formation of snowflakes and checked on the plant we put into the freezer on Thursday. We recorded it visually before freezing, frozen and thawed. We have continued monitoring its progress this week. It’s not looking very healthy now. We were trying to answer the question “Can you be frozen and then come alive again?”
Wendy and Chris P are running a conflict resolution course. If you would like to learn more about how we resolve conflict at Currambena then this is the course for you. It will run over two Saturdays 7th and 14th March and the cut-off date for enrolment is next Tuesday. For further information look in the rest of the newsletter.

The Scary Lollypops
This week the Scary lollypops have experienced a variety of teaching styles and activities with both Sarah and Tammy filling in on different days.
In English we have continued to read “The 13 Storey Treehouse” and today we are writing stories about our own dream homes. With Sarah the children revisited nouns and started learning about verbs. With Tammy the children learnt a lot about B words and wrote stories. Today we will be doing guided reading in our groups.
In mathematics the children have been learning about: addition and subtraction number sentences and number patterns using concrete materials.
The Dolphins
This week we have been working on the letter “h”. We have made “H” and “h” with our bodies, our hands and even a three person “H”. We have read a heap of hippopotamus stories and some poems inspired by the letter “h”. Today we wrote our own poems loosely based on the letter “h” and inspired by the poems we read. They are on the wall near the teachers’ chair and the easel. Come and read them!

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Camp at Little River last week was a great success. Thank you very much to all the parents who helped by driving us there or back… and to Ruth for coming with us. It was wonderful to see so many of the children challenging themselves with the activities… and I was extremely proud when the guides/instructors said that ours was one of the best groups they’ve ever had! Abseiling, canoeing, rock climbing, raft-building, archery, low ropes, flying fox, campfire… we certainly packed a lot in. And the weather was kind! A great experience.

Next trip is to Canberra in September. More about that later.

This week we are measuring length in Maths and converting between mm, cm and m. Do you know how far it is from your house to Currambena? We will be asking that question next week and discussing ways to estimate or measure it.

In English this week we are reading “Maximum Ride” and working on spelling text books and thank you letters!

PIPs are due on Friday 13th March so our trip to Lane Cove Library on Monday was an opportunity for resources to be found. Most of the children have theirs well underway but please check in with them in case they feel they need your help.

This week at the pool, I observed each child swimming backstroke. Some of them are excellent swimmers and others are just beginning to get their stoke work together.

Please remember … and help your child remember, too…that I expect each one of them to read every night whenever possible. They should be reading books with more writing than pictures, long books which take quite a few nights to finish. They should have another book at school for silent reading (or they can bring their home reading book if they wish). I also expect them to practise their times tables with you at home… or in the car which is sometimes good. Everyone has a brief quiz on Friday.

Our contract this week (and most weeks) is for 2 pages of each text book, spelling and maths. All the children now have their text books and most have this well under control. Text books can be taken home to be completed so long as they let me know they are doing this. No shops if pages are not complete.

On Monday we were delighted to welcome Margot Sims, David Cohen’s wife, to Currambena. Margot’s speech to the School Meeting is in this Newsletter. Her obituary for David, who was one of Currambena’s founding fathers was published in yesterday’s Herald… and mentions Currambena. Next Monday, we will be welcoming David’s son, Bernard, who will be running some story writing workshops in honour of his father. We are certainly very lucky to have such connections!

A couple of practical things:
1. Next Tuesday is the final date for signing up for the CONFLICT RESOLUTION COURSE that Chris and I are proposing for two Saturdays in March, 7th and 14th. Please see the details on another page of this Newsletter.
2. I have a few forms which need signing so if you haven’t done this please come and find me and ask about it.
3. We need a representative for the CLC this year. Melissa, Bella’s Mother, was the rep for Louise’s group last year and she has offered to do it again this year for us if nobody else is interested. Please speak to Melissa or to me if you would like to take this on for us!

Hope you all enjoyed the breakfast this morning!

Have a great week. Love, Wendy

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Hi Everyone,

It was lovely to see so many of you at the community breakfast this morning. What a treat to get a bacon and egg roll on a Thursday morning! Sadly, we also say goodbye to Isabelle Fisher from our class. We wish the whole family the best of luck with their move overseas and the big adventures that await them.

On Monday I was away on a professional development course on teaching philosophy to children. On Tuesday we had our first philosophy lesson in class. We used the movie Paper Planes as our stimulus and came up with many themes that were portrayed in the film. Following this we had an in depth discussion about friendship – the way the different characters were involved in friendships and then to some wider questions about friendship like: ‘Is it ever challenging to be friends with someone?’ The children were very respectful of each other and their opinions. When I asked if they’d liked their philosophy lesson, they were all very positive. Two of the children came up with other questions they’d like to discuss next time: ‘Is it easy to show your real feelings to a friend?’ and ‘What is it that makes a friendship?’

In maths we have been looking at addition. We will be learning some new strategies to try to be efficient – choosing the right strategy for the numbers.

Yesterday we carried out science experiments with our paper planes. In groups the children decided which variable to test out of paper size, paper colour and paper type. They then flew their planes over the basketball court and measured the distance they travelled. We are yet to analyse the results.

We watched three personal project presentations yesterday too. Isabelle wanted to present hers before leaving and the other two were early finishers. All three were packed full of information and were presented with confidence. It was great for the new children to this class to see some projects from older children. Hopefully it was inspiring and motivating.

Next week Abby, Rory’s mum will come in and do some work with us on our paper project. Expect to find something growing in the classroom this time next week.

That’s all for this week.

Love Louise

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