The School Newsletter Week 4, Term 2 2020

From the Principal

Last Saturday was gazetted as World Support Staff Day. I am not sure why a Saturday was chosen as the day to pay homage to mark this event! Nevertheless, our staff will be celebrating this occasion when we are all back on site full time – hopefully fairly soon.

Every workplace has a core activity whose staff operates directly within the roles linked to that core activity. In a school, those people are the teachers. However, what would a workplace be without the staff who do not operate at the forefront of its main activity, yet play fundamental roles in the overall organisation? Imagine a supermarket without the cleaners to maintain the cleanliness and tidiness of a store. Or without the administration staff to process orders, payments and payroll. Or without the IT staff to maintain the EFTPOS machine for monetary transactions. Or without the stockroom staff to replenish the store’s inventory so that they actually have something to sell. Every role within an organisation is a cog in a machine. If a cog is missing, the machine simply won’t work as effectively, or might even come to a standstill.

Schools are no different. When you think of school, you think of the teachers. But what of the many support staff who play essential roles within the school and in the educating of the students?

The learning support assistants (LSAs) who support the students academically and pastorally.

The admin staff who navigate the unwieldy bureaucracy that education has become.

The library assistants who undertake many of the administrative tasks and hence allow our teacher librarian to focus on developing effective information services and programs and integrating information resources, technologies and collaborative tools into the students’ learning.

The cleaner, whose job has recently evolved into reducing the spread of a virus that has led to a global pandemic.

The school counsellor and the pastoral care worker, whose jobs require initiative, discretion, expertise and varying levels of confidentiality in dealing with matters of importance to the psychological and emotional wellbeing of students.

These staff play significant roles in the operation of schools, yet they typically do not get the recognition that they deserve. The eight people on our support staff team are, in many respects, the glue that holds our school together:

  • Our LSAs - Toni Curley and Lynne McMaster.
  • Our school admin – Bronwyn Sartori.
  • Our library assistants – Margaux Windever and Fiona Phillips.
  • Our cleaner - Brigitte Thompson.
  • Our counsellor – Gayna Turner.
  • Our pastoral care worker – Lisa Ridgewell.

If any of these people have made even the smallest difference for either you or your child/ren, feel free to flick them an email and wish them all the best (belatedly) on World Support Staff Day:

Have a good week.

Peter Green.

Kindergarten 2021

Enrolments are open for 2021 - please let your friends and family know what a great school St Patrick's is.


Just because we are not at school full time doesn't mean that book club can't continue. click- the link below and go directly to the fantastic issue that Scholastic have put together. You can place your orders via LOOP or send your orders into school if you prefer to order that way.

Orders are due by Thursday 21st May


As a caring community we would like to continue to offer our support to the Santamaria family by maintaining their lawns for the rest of the year. If you can offer your help, it would be greatly appreciated. Please click on the link below where you will be taken to a lawn mowing roster, where you can volunteer to help on a particular Saturday.

News From the Home front

Another week of home learning has provided lots of new experiences for everyone. Below are each teacher's reports with work samples and photos of tasks that have happened in each class.


Kindergarten has been working so hard since the beginning of the term. Can you believe that we have started to spell words and read sentences? We are also pretty clever at counting forwards and backwards from 0 to 20. Here are some work samples from five of our clever Kinder students:

  • Eli is a super speller!
  • Elijah drew his family as part of our History unit.
  • Emmett built a 3-dimensional city as part of our Maths investigation into shapes around us.
  • Sebastian followed a directed drawing tutorial to complete a possum. We had just been introduced to words that begin with the /p/ sound.
  • Blake used sound boxes to spell words.

From Mrs Ogden,

Year 1 Blue has continued to work hard at home last week, with some pleasing results.

  • Maddie learnt to use the number line to solve addition word problems.
  • Jarvie practised his phonics using the ‘ai’ and ‘ay’ sounds.
  • Charlie read books on EPIC and she enjoyed reading about Cinderella Rex.
  • Lachlan used the jump strategy on a number line to solve 2-digit addition algorithms.

From Mrs Hyland

Year 1 White has been working so well at home and I am very impressed. Take a look at some of our work on Seesaw.

  • Lachlan showed that he can use the jump strategy to add 2-digit numbers.
  • Isla shared her knowledge of celebrations and the ones that her family enjoys.
  • Mia showed that she can add large numbers.
  • Evie used her imagination to create a lovely story using Cinderella as her inspiration.

From Mrs Stewart (Yr 2)

What a great week in Year 2! My highlight was seeing everyone on Tuesday and Wednesday. Year 2 has been very busy planning and writing interesting recounts about things that they have been doing.

  • Chloe planned an orientation about her scooter ride to Blacksmiths. She completed her whole recount at school last Tuesday. It was fabulous!
  • Drew wrote about his first day back at school.
  • Lillian and Zoie have been researching some interesting facts about the telephone.
  • Xavier and Kingston played "Tricky Word" snap.
  • Lucy made "paper people" to represent some the important people in her community.
  • Oscar measured the capacity of different containers in his kitchen.

FROM MRS CURK (Yr 1 Science, Yr 4/5/6 History)

Year 1 Science

This week we investigated making sculptures by bending, stretching and twisting foil.

Year 4 History

We collaborated online by sharing our answers to'Why did Europeans settle in Australia?' on a padlet.

Year 5/6 History

We are continuing to learn about awesome Aussies in the 1800's. Have a look at Jemima and Coco's posters.


It was lovely seeing so many of the students again last week. I was lucky enough to see the Kindergarten students making their windsocks and discussing weather and I was delighted to hear the 5/6 students review "Once" by Morris Gleitzman.

From Mrs Koster (Yr3)

Last week we measured and compared the mass of different objects. Lukah showed us that two objects she found in her house have a similar mass, although they are made out of different materials.

This week Year 3 read the book 'A Bad Case of Stripes'. The students wrote some excellent reports about the story, and recorded themselves delivering the evening news. Here is Ashley’s report:

Camilla got a bad case of stripes because she didn’t eat lima beans. She was frightened that everyone else thought she was weird. Then she turned into a rainbow stripy person. The doctor told her it was OK to go to school, but when she went to school all of the kids laughed at her. Whenever somebody said something like “what about purple dots”, she turned into it! There were lots of doctors, specialists and experts who came to try to cure her. It kept getting worse!

Then an old woman came over and gave her some lima beans, because the old woman was magical and she knew they would cure Camilla. The lady knew that Camilla hadn’t been eating lima beans because Camilla was worried and she didn’t want to be different.

Camilla had to eat the lima beans because she really did love them. She got better and she realised that you don’t have to be like other people. You have to be yourself.

From Mr McCarthy (yr 3)

  • 1 – Zahli: Throwing and catching
  • Arielle’s artwork from the story “Don't Let The Pigeon Drive the Bus” by Mo Willems
  • Levi’s mathematics challenge


Year 4/5 enjoyed being back in the classroom last week, being able to connect with their peers, seeing some familiar faces and being able learn in the classroom. We have been reading the text ‘Wonder’ by R.J. Palacio. In the story the English teacher, Mr Brown, presents his class with the precept: ‘When given the choice between right and kind, choose kind’. The students have been discussing this concept in class and debating this way of thinking. Here are a few of the students’ responses.

“Being right isn't always the best answer. Sometimes when you’re doing something right it could hurt someone else's feelings. For example, you could brag that you always get everything correct but some people might not be as good as you. You sometimes hurt other people’s feelings when being right and that could hurt yours. So what would you choose: right or kind?” Lara

“I choose kind because I would rather more people being happy than one person being right. To be kind is like being sweet and nice. Being right is good and all, but being kind will always be better. So no matter what, always choose kind.” Banjo

“Would you rather be right and get everything correct or kind and be nice to everyone? Well, I would choose kind because if you’re right you never get anything wrong, but if you’re kind and get things wrong that's okay because you learn from your mistakes.” Caitlin

“If you are kind to everyone a lot of people will be kind back to you. When you are kind you can make a lot of friends, but if you are mean to other people they won’t want to be your friends. When you are always right that’s a good thing, but when someone else does choose the wrong answer you would say “that’s wrong,” and their feelings may be hurt. When you are kind, you are considerate to other people’s feelings.” Sunshine

“Always choose kind. Choosing kind can come with good consequences. Some of the consequences of being kind can be making someone smile, feeling happy or possibly making friends. So always choose kind because it has good consequences.” Teddy

From Mrs dent (Yr 5/6)

Year 5/6’s reflections on learning from home and returning to face-to-face teaching last week:

  • “I liked returning to school because you could explain the work to us on Monday, then you gave us the work to bring home.”
  • “I liked returning to school.”
  • “I feel pretty good on how things worked out in my home learning. I am getting more and more confident as the weeks go on.
  • “I like the fact that we can see you and my school friends in person at school, and I would prefer to return to school full time.”
  • “I enjoyed returning to school and it was good to see my friends again and to ask the teacher questions.”
  • “I don’t like that we have to go twice a week because I feel I’m doing better at home with no distractions.”
  • “I think that I had a bit of trouble with learning from home at the start, but when I got into it I was fine.”
  • “I liked going back to school on Monday and I disliked when I didn't know what to do sometimes.”
  • “It was fine learning from home. I got the help when I needed it.”
  • “I liked learning fractions at home because I have improved at them.”
  • “It has been really fun learning from home. I have definitely learnt new things. I think Mum and Dad learnt new things too! We did have our ups and downs with the fractions but we all understood it at the end.”
  • “I enjoyed sitting at the table with my family while we all worked on our work. I normally sit down in my room independently at my desk, and I did need some helping with a couple of questions.”
  • “I was very happy with the work you gave us to keep me and others busy.”
  • “Dislike: Nothing. Like: The maths booklet because I like paper more than online.”


We are truly blessed to have a wonderful team of teachers and parents working together to ensure that the continuity of learning for our students is both academic and formative. We are ensuring that our students’ learning in Religious Education remains a priority. Teachers are doing an exceptional job in accessing different types of resources for home-based learning to engage students and to provide rich learning experiences. During this term our classes will develop their knowledge and understanding in the topics of Values and Justice, and they will apply their understanding to the world today. This learning connects well to the issues that we currently face.

This time of change in the way we live has had an impact on the ways in which we practise our faith and spirituality. It has meant that we have had to change the ways in which we access prayer and faith formation opportunities and find ways to stay connected with our faith communities.

Taking time for silence and rest is very important. When we find it hard to pray, being led by someone else can help. Ripples, a wonderful new prayer resource for adults, was developed by the Diocese of Wollongong. You will find it at https://ripples.dow.catholic.edu.au.

Here are some other resources that might be of interest to you:


Celebrating Mass at home

Weekly reflection on the Sunday Gospel (easy read)

Where is God in all of this?

Message from Pope Francis


The school photos (student portraits and class groups) were originally scheduled to be taken on 16th June. Due to COVID-19 restrictions, the school photos have been rescheduled to Tuesday 11th August. This year, the format for school photos will change to a composite style. Each student will be photographed individually, with the group created digitally as a composite. This will eliminate the need for students to be grouped together in close contact with either themselves or the staff of MSP Photography.

Additional protocols will include:

  • Students will move in and out of the school hall individually.
  • The hall will be set up in such a way as to ensure that each individual student will maintain the recommended social distancing guidelines of 1.5 metres from other students and the photographer.
  • Hygiene and cleaning guidelines used by MSP Photography staff are in accordance with information distributed by the relevant health authorities.


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