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Mil Lel Primary School

Phone (+61 8) 8725 5883, Fax(+61 8) 8725 0802
PO Box 8124, Mt Gambier East, 5291 dl.0265.info@schools.sa.edu.au

CLASSROOM REPORTS – 30TH NOVEMBER 2015

RECEPTION & year 1 CLASS

We have been having a very busy second half of the term. We have been learning about a range of animal habitats and why different animals have different habitats. We have also been rehearsing for our school concert item and the children are really enjoying this. It seems to be coming along nicely. We will also be making some props and parts of our costumes. In the last couple of weeks of the term we will learn about how people around the world celebrate Christmas.

Ben

YEAR 1 & 2 CLASS

School has been very busy! We were invited to decorate a Christmas tree which is displayed at ‘The Marketplace’ shopping centre. It was great fun making decorations and so nice that so many parents brought their children after school to help decorate it. We showed our decorations at assembly hanging them on a human Christmas tree, at the suggestion of year one student, Caelin Hayman.

We have been preparing for White Ribbon Day which prompted some interesting discussions and creative art works. We will share these with students from other classes, on the day.

Our art work from Visual Arts activities is on display in the school foyer. There are some interesting comments from the students about Aboriginal dot paintings.

End of year assessments have dominated Maths lessons and revision of natural Maths strategies. For our English assessment, we all wrote our own Information Report about water. Our Science studies about water have been very popular. Students talked about pollution, the three states of water, the water cycle, uses of water, how to save it, and after mentioning icebergs, they did their own research about the ‘Titanic’.

We still have to plan a Christmas party and rehearse our Christmas concert item!

Gail and Halaena

YEAR 3 & 4 CLASS

Children enjoyed writing thank you letters to the Fritsch Family for the huge contribution that they made to the parade. It was useful for students to consider the perspective of their writing: from a person who participated and loved the experience and from the perspective of a member of our school community.

We are busy preparing for concert, parties and Kris Kringle. Students have been given materials from school so that they can make a “gift” for home work for their secret KK. The learning is based around many aspects of Getting Along, about self-smartness and people smartness. This is a perfect time to reinforce the fact that there are good secrets (that we should keep) and bad secrets (that we should find a trusted person on our network to share).

Judy

YEAR 5, 6 & 7 CLASS

We’ve begun the busy journey toward the end of the year. Year 7 students are writing their speeches and we’re all putting together our mix of a play and a dance for the end of the year concert.

Students have been busy discussing, analysing and designing in Economics. We’ve looked at why and how companies manipulate consumers. In Art, we finished off our epic projects and the final products look amazing. In music, we’ve looked at reading basic music as well as forming beats and rhythms on drums (or in our case, buckets). In technology, we’ve been discussing how to substitute unhealthy ingredients for healthy ones and have finished by designing our own recipes.

In History, we’ve written historical recounts about the Victorian Era in Australia, formed time-lines and deconstructed videos and books to find out about the historical content they contain. In addition to this, we have researched the fashion of the era and used our knowledge to design our own clothing.

In Maths, we’ve looked at Algebra, while in English we’ve been reading a historical recount about the Victorian Era as well as looking at how we structure the text type when writing our own.

For the rest of the year, the students will be finishing maths with location and transformation, working on the concert item and doing some Christmas activities.

Eryn

FRENCH / LIBRARY

French

All classes are learning about Christmas in France for the last three weeks of school and will be making Christmas decorations with a French flair. They will also be learning about Christmas traditions in France.

Last Saturday, along with a number of other languages teachers in the South East I attended a Languages Training and Development in Naracoorte. We reviewed the new Australian Curriculum and discussed and learnt ways of implementing it in our classrooms. It was good to find out that what we do at Mil Lel is on a par with other schools and departmental requirements.

Library

Congratulations to students for completing the Premier’s Reading Challenge. Certificates and medals have now been distributed.

The Scholastic Book Fair is going well and will be closed by the end of Week 7. Thanks for your support as the school receives books to the value of 20% of total sales. We will be able to order more books for our Library. Thanks to Jill Gilmore for organizing the Book Fair and also the other amazing things she does during the year in the Library.

JOYEUX NOEL

Shirley

CLASSROOM REPORTS – 27TH OCTOBER 2015

RECEPTION & year 1 CLASS

We are having a strong Science focus this term, where we are learning about the needs of living things. We are growing seedlings under a range of conditions and we’ve been making predictions, observations, and recordings of their growth. We are also learning about the functions of different parts of plants and how they each contribute to the plant’s growth. Another thing we will be learning about is the needs of animals, and animal habitats, including designing and making a diorama of an animal’s habitat. This learning is being incorporated into English, Maths, Technologies, Visual Arts, and Drama.

We are also learning about how to write recounts, and we are having a focus on subtraction strategies in Maths at the moment. We’re going to begin making initial preparations for our school concert item soon, which will include making some props.

Ben

YEAR 1 & 2 CLASS

It is great to be back at school and the children have all settled in well after the holidays. They wrote about their adventures and illustrated them. You are welcome to view them; they are hanging in our classroom.

Our literacy revolves around the ‘Daily Five’, (read to self, read to someone, listen to reading, work on writing and word work). We are also learning about ‘Information Reports’ and watched a wonderful video about Zombies that taught us the important parts of a report.

To learn ordinal numbers for mathematics we raced toy cars, drew ‘dodgem cars’ and hung them in order. We are also working on improving our ability to do addition and subtraction, mentally.

The video ‘Danny the Drip’ was a fun introduction to our science studies about water and the story, ‘Water Witcher’ by Jan Ormerod aroused a lot of interest and some practice at lunchtimes.

We had a great time at the Agriculture Learning Centre at the Mount Gambier Show and offer sincere thanks to the parents who helped with supervision. We will use the experience with the animals, to reflect on our life cycle studies and also in literacy. We were very proud of our students who were a credit to Mil Lel Primary on this excursion.

Gail and Halaena

YEAR 3 & 4 CLASS

This term is characterized by revision of core elements of literacy and numeracy.

In Maths practice of basic number facts and completing basic computations in problem-solving situations are essentials too. Students share strategies so that they can build a repertoire of their own which will form the foundation of their learning in 2016.

In English the sharing and building is similar but is mainly around features of different text types, construction of different text types and consolidating strategies that a good reader uses.

Judy

YEAR 5, 6 & 7 CLASS

This term the Upper Primary have begun by completing their finals for Art. All their hard work and skill development has paid off and some really professional looking artworks are appearing. The students have also been working on the way they will be presenting their artworks and soon they'll be set up like an art gallery, which parents and other classes may come and visit.

Canberra camp was a huge success with our students getting along really well with their roommates from Kongorong. The biggest highlights for the kids were ice skating, the War Memorial and the AIS.

After finishing our work on angles, we've moved into algebra and as the students are discovering - it's not that scary! We'll be finishing the year with the remainder of the geometry work we haven't covered, such as location and transformation.

We've begun writing Historical Recounts in English and reading 'Factory Girl'. Our History topic is the social history of Australia during the Victorian Era.

Soon we'll be moving into Music, the students have chosen an area they wish to look at and will be developing their skills in small groups. Eventually, they will be asked to perform a piece of music and also to compose their own.

Miss Hogg will once again be taking the students for Science and they'll be working on Earth and Space Sciences. They'll also be finishing off their work in Economics by looking at what companies do to trick consumers into buying their products and will end by designing their own product using the things they've learnt and by collecting data to inform their designs.

Eryn

FRENCH / LIBRARY

French

The Upper Primary have been working on Buildings of Paris assignments for a number of weeks. After choosing a subject, they researched and then produced an A3 poster showing facts they had found and pictures sourced from books and the internet. These posters have been placed in a folder which is displayed in the French Room. When this work was completed many students went on to make a model of their building or structure. While the Year 6 and 7 students were at Canberra the Year 5s made buildings modelled from cake (an enjoyable lesson for all). The Year 3 and 4 class have also been busy making models of the Arc De Triomphe and are currently putting on the finishing touches so they can show them at Assembly. R-2 classes have been learning about houses.

Library

Thanks to Mrs Gilmore for all the work she does in the Library. She set up the hall display for the Mil Lel Show at the end of last term. You would agree it looked very impressive. Thanks to all of the staff for providing artwork from their classes for the display. Some if it will now be displayed in the Library.

In Week 6 we are having a Book Fair. Scholastic are sending us books which we will display in the Library. Parents and classes will have a chance to have a look at them and have an opportunity to purchase. (Would make good Christmas presents!) The school receives benefits in the form of free books and vouchers. Read more about this in newsletters and posters around the school.

A bientot

Shirley

CLASSROOM REPORTS – 8TH SEPTEMBER 2015

RECEPTION & year 1 CLASS

In the second half of the term we are having a Science focus. The children are investigating sources of light and sound, and learning about how they are produced and how they travel. Their understanding of the role of light and sound in our lives and our community are being developed through hands-on activities. This week, for example, we are making papier mache shakers, string telephones, ear cones and rubber band banjos. Next week we will be attending a performance by Patch Theatre Company called The Moon is a Balloon, which has a strong focus on light.

We have just finished a Maths unit about 2D and 3D shapes, and we are now consolidating and extending our ability to use mental computation strategies. We wrote descriptions of a ‘Shape Monster’ (some are on display in the front office) and the children are now in the final stages of writing a narrative based on their shape monster. The children enjoyed the Music Is Fun performance last week, and they are looking forward to doing the Mil Lel Show electives.

Ben

YEAR 1 & 2 CLASS

The major theme of our learning this term has been fairy tales. We are concluding this unit by going through the writing process to create a unique fairy tale. Students have chosen a familiar fairy tale and are required to change something about the story. The 1/2s are learning that the writing process is quite lengthy with drafting, editing, conferencing, publishing and illustrating. The final product will be a book that the student has published and illustrated.

Measurement has been the major focus in Maths and the students have been practicing area skills. For Science students are observing our skies for changes from day to night. In Drama we are extending our work on emotions and applying that to fairy tale characters.

Alicia and Halaena

YEAR 3 & 4 CLASS

We have a pre-service teacher in our class for the last five weeks of term. Kylie Ortiz is introducing the class to Spanish language and culture. Spanish is spoken in approximately twenty countries around the world. Kylie lived in Ecuador for four years.

A love of Science inspired our class item at the Parent Club birthday assembly where we consolidated our learning about heat and heat transfer, along with our learning about the importance of developing a growth/open mindset, rather than a closed/fixed mindset.

Our “choice of attitude” determines how successful we can be in everything we do. Growth mindset work is not new. For example, Randall Clinch has been working with students to change their thinking for many years. He started working with students on “attitude by choice” by visiting schools. Now he has “smarter thinking” apps.

What is new, is the teaching of the thinking skills needed for growth mindsets in many classrooms – hopefully every classroom.

Judy

YEAR 5, 6 & 7 CLASS

In class we've been reading Information Texts on the Australian government and learning about the text and language features of this text type. This has also served as a basis for beginning our own Information Reports on the Australian Government.

In Design and Tech, we've begun our cooking unit and so far the students have used many different utensils to explore and compare. We used carrots to demonstrate how each utensil worked and we then looked at the differences in the time taken to achieve carrot preparation, and the effectiveness of the tool. Then we used potatoes and cooked them in a range of different ways, including using both healthy and unhealthy techniques. The students recorded their results, took photos and predicted which ones they thought were healthy, and which were not. At the end of this unit, the aim is for students to design their own healthy recipe based on some of the things they've learnt, including healthy food preparation and storage.

Art is going really well, with students making some excellent reflection on their work to identify goals that they can work on for next time. Their skills are coming along nicely and they'll soon be ready to begin their final product. Some things the students have been doing are wood carving, clay modelling, photography, realistic drawing and pop-art.


In Maths we've been building up our knowledge on fractions and students are continuing to enjoy learning at their own pace.

Eryn

FRENCH / LIBRARY

Music

The R-4 classes successfully competed in the Mount Gambier Eisteddfod-recorder section on the 14th of August. We are very proud of the students as they played enthusiastically and beautifully. The adjudicator Mr. Bill Broughton, who incidentally has worked on Disney movies, remarked positively on the effort of both classes.

Participating in the Eisteddfod gives the children experience and confidence to perform on stage as well as learning how to work together to produce a musical item.

The entire school participated in the Music is Fun Band performance last Friday at Suttontown Primary School. The children always look forward to this performance as they are encouraged to sing along as well as participate in the show. They also have the opportunity to learn some of the songs prior to the day.

Book Week

On Wednesday the 9th September we will have our annual book week parade. Children and staff are encouraged to dress up as their favourite book character. All through the week we will be having various activities such as book readings at lunchtimes, an author workshop on Thursday and our parade on the Wednesday morning at 9.am.

We are into the last week of the Premier’s Reading Challenge so please encourage your children to return their forms to me asap. R-2 students are working through their list at school.

Shirley

CLASSROOM REPORTS – 3rd August 2015

RECEPTION & year 1 CLASS

For the first half of this term we are having a strong History focus. We are investigating who is in our families, where they were born, how they are related to each other, and how family structures differ, including amongst Asian and Indigenous cultures. We are learning about how children and their families commemorate past events, and how stories about the past can be communicated. Additionally, we are learning about the differences and similarities between the children’s daily lives and the daily lives of their parents and grandparents. We went on an excursion to Echo Farm last week which gave us a wonderful insight into how people lived between 1900 - 1930. The children really enjoyed it, and we bought some of the old-fashioned toys for our classroom. We learned about the toys that children played with at the start of the last century, and how they moved without batteries or electricity, and we also enjoyed seeing the donkey, turkeys, wallaby, pig and all the other animals.

Ben

YEAR 1 & 2 CLASS

We have started the term with a strong Literacy focus on Fairy-tales which is also integrated into our drama activities and some Maths lessons. Our Mathematics focus has been number and measurement. The students have enjoyed the different hands on activities and interactive Maths games we have been doing as a class. For reading we have started the Daily 5 program in which the students work in different groups to work on reading and writing skills. We are keeping weather learning journals for Science and investigating changes in the sky.

On Fridays, Halaena will be teaching an integrated unit on Design & Technology and Literacy (focus on fairy tales) as well as Geography (focus on our place in the world).

Alicia and Halaena

YEAR 3 & 4 CLASS

One student showed the teacher an interesting missile, simply-made using a post-it note, tape and a straw. As we were learning about length, the class made “planes” and measured the lengths that the planes travelled. We learnt the terms parallel and perpendicular.

Coincidentally, we were doing procedural texts so the class was tutored by a peer using a procedural text – making our learning meaningful. Of course we also discussed the Science learning regarding variables and fair tests. We suggested reasons why some planes went further than others.

In Visual Arts children have decorated masks cleverly and used crayon to create a picture that has perspective – showing distance and closeness.

As you pass through front foyer, enjoy the class’ learning about information report writing - the literacy of the text. The content of the text was the topic of soil.

Judy

YEAR 5, 6 & 7 CLASS

We’ve started off the week by getting straight in to what we needed to finish from last term. The students have been working hard putting together evidence to show their understanding of constructing, measuring, identifying, estimating and classifying angles. They’ve been providing detailed explanations with diagrams, photos and videos, handing up evidence of concept practice, completing Math Online activities and doing their fluency tests.

We’ve also finished off our castle lanterns, which have been a lot of hard work but we all agree that they’ve been well worth it. The upper primary will be taking their new skills and teaching the rest of the school, so we’ll end up with a whole school display of lanterns in the library.

The students have also been busy finalising their art proposals, ready to get started next week. The students will be given a journal in which they record their progress, reflections, analysis of professional artworks and of course a visual journey of their skill development. The students have all identified a skill they’ll be developing over the term, which they will then put into a final artwork. Some of the mediums they’ve chosen to look at are sculpture, photography and realistic drawing.

Students have also been working very hard on their debating. Last term we did a lot of research about the topics they were given. These topics were ‘Donald Bradman is the best sportsman ever’ and ‘print newspapers should be banned’. Over the past week we’ve finalised our arguments, developed a bank of predicted rebuttals and held mock debates almost every day.

The students also welcomed their teacher for Thursdays, Miss Halaena Hogg, who is very excited about working with the class. She’ll be studying poetry this term and also beginning a Science unit on electricity.

Eryn

FRENCH / LIBRARY

Library

All classes are well on their way to completing this year’s Premier’s Reading Challenge. Reception, Year 1 and 2 student documentation is managed at school this year. Year 3 to 7 students need to complete their record page independently. The challenge finishes early September so there is still plenty of time.

French

The Reception/1/2 classes have been learning about mealtimes and labeling plates, knives, forks and cups etc found on a table.

This term the Upper Primary is finishing their topic, ‘Buildings of Paris’ and have completed some great work so far. This activity focuses on key concepts such as collaboration, planning, and organising.

The Year 3 and 4 class has completed some work about the Tour De France and have been learning about food and labeling mealtimes.

Music

The year 1 to 4 students will be performing at the recorder eisteddfod on Friday the 14th of August. We are scheduled to perform at 12.30 pm. If you wish to come and watch you would be very welcome. There is a $2 entry fee. The students will be bussed to and from The Wehl Street Theatre.

A big thank you to the Parent Club who gave me some money to purchase resources for the French room. As a result we were able to purchase mini-whiteboards and we have used them extensively in classes.

A bientot

Shirley

CLASSROOM REPORTS - 17TH JUNE 2015

RECEPTION & year 1 CLASS

In the second half of this term we are having a strong Geography focus. We are exploring what makes a place special, and how to care for special places. We are also looking at how spaces can be rearranged to suit different purposes and we are looking at the forest area and creating designs for improvements to it. We are also learning about how people from different cultures, including traditional Aboriginal people and people from Asian countries, use spaces. We will also be looking at the differences between natural, managed and built environments. These activities are being incorporated into English, Maths, Science, Design & Technology, and The Arts lessons.

The children really loved being involved with the Move It performance, and really enjoyed getting into their costumes and dancing on stage. I was really proud of the job they did and the effort they had put into learning the routine.

Ben

YEAR 1 & 2 CLASS

The children really enjoyed participating in 'Move It'. It was very exciting and lots of fun. They worked hard and enjoyed the learning process. It was great to see how well they cooperated with each other and I was proud of their performance on the night.

They are currently very enthusiastic about History studies and did a great job interviewing seniors about how their lives have been changed by technology. However, I was a bit stunned after I explained that it would be best if they interviewed someone very old and they asked if they could interview me!! They are also fascinated with the old games their grandparents played and are now busy playing elastics, knucklebones, marbles, clapping games and hopscotch. We are also learning about Aboriginal children's games and are inviting a guest to share her knowledge. We enjoyed learning about and making an Aboriginal flag and playing the Aboriginal game called 'sticks'.

During Reconciliation Week, we read the books, 'Special Lands' by Wendy Notley and 'Fair Skin Black Fella' by Renee Fogorty. These stimulated interesting discussions and some very creative artworks.

Science is a popular subject this term as we study mixtures and sometimes they blow up or go sticky and gooey, needless to say, the children love it !

In Mathematics, we continue to work on the many, many different ways to do addition and subtraction, helping students to solve problems and working towards developing the ability to perform mental maths (without the use of paper, pencil, computer or calculator).

Our Literacy work has focused on writing longer, more descriptive sentences with good use of conjunctions, adverbs and adjectives.

Gail

YEAR 3 & 4 CLASS

In Maths we have been collecting data using surveys. Our learning has included how we analyze the data and the survey processes, so that we can determine the validity of the data - skills that are needed more and more in a modern world where technology presents data to us constantly. Students have independently used Excel with ever-increasing skill.

Much of our recent learning has been in the area of Dance when doing Move It, which has been highly-successful. The learning in Dance includes opportunities for students to: work together showing respect for the needs of others, be persistent, develop confidence, be organized and improve resilience.

Being able to improve on these life skills by participating in Move It every two years is invaluable. The improvement in Year 3&4 students has been pleasing, with some students showing amazing development as they have opportunities to build on their learning and successes.

Judy

YEAR 5, 6 & 7 CLASS

This term we're been learning about narrative writing. We've looked at plot structure and how it resembles a mountain, starting with the introduction and rising to the climax. We've explored many descriptive devices such as personification, simile and a technique authors use to make readers inference, it's called 'show don't tell'. The easiest way to explain this is that great authors never use emotion words, this would be telling and sounds like: John was sad. Instead, they describe the emotion using what they character says, how he says it, the type of punctuation used, what happens to their body, what the character is doing and sometimes they include what the character is thinking. An example of 'showing' is, 'John's eyes brimmed with tears and his lip began to tremble. "Why are you doing this?" he whispered.'

For Reconciliation Week we looked at an Aboriginal artist and used their work to inspire our own beautiful art, using a similar style and a piece of nature to help us.

In Maths we've completed our unit on measurement and shape and the students are very proud of the castles they've produced as a result. Our next step is to turn them into 3D models.

Eryn

FRENCH / LIBRARY

Library

Hopefully all classes are well on their way to completing this year's Premer's Reading Challenge. Reception, Year 1 and Year 2 are all managed at school this year. Year 3 to 7 however is up to the student. Reading finishes early September so there is plenty of time.

French

This term the Upper Primary is focusing on buildings of Paris and part of this will be setting up displays in the French Room around this topic. This activity focuses on the content description from the Australian Curriculum-Languages:- 'Participate in guided tasks such as organising displays, developing projects or budgeting for events. (Key concepts: task, collaboration, budget; Key processes: planning, organising, budgeting)'.

Year 3 and 4 have looked at how you ask a question in French as well as work about 'pink day' and Reception/Year 1 and Year 1&2 classes have learnt words such as merci, bravo and pardon. They have also been learning about pets.

Music

Once again we are entering the Year 1 to 4 classes in the Recorder Eisteddfod which is held in Term 3. For the next few weeks we will be practising hard in order to hone our recorder playing skills!

A bientot

Shirley

CLASSROOM REPORTS - 12TH MAY 2015

RECEPTION & YEAR 1 CLASS

We have had a busy start to this term. We will be saying goodbye to Isabelle and Tom in the next week, as both of their families are moving interstate. We were very excited recently to receive the oral language books and cards that we ordered with money that the Parent Club made available to us.

In the first half of the term we are having a strong Science focus. Students will be using their senses to explore physical changes in their everyday lives through the actions of bending, stretching and scrunching. We will be discussing how their actions physically change everyday objects and materials. We will also be exploring the effect that drying out has on the ability of objects made of playdough to change their shape. This will be incorporated into English, Maths, Design & Technology, and The Arts (including dance) lessons.

The children have been loving our Move It rehearsals and our item is coming along very nicely. We will be recording books we read for the Premier's Reading Challenge this term.

Ben

YEAR 1 & 2 CLASS

The students settled in quickly this term and are enjoying having a pre-service teacher, Ms. Morgan Lindner, working with us. In the last week of last term we invited Mr Colin Cameron to speak to the students about Anzac Day as part of their enquiry for History. This term they displayed some of their work on this in the front foyer. The students were very interested in this study.

We are working on an integrated mini project about Mother's Day for History, Writing, Art, Design and Literacy. We researched the history of this celebration, drew and painted pictures of mothers, designed cards, made vouchers, and wrote about their mother.

Students shared their knowledge of how Technology has created change from past to present and we will continue to inquire about this in History Studies. We looked at a 53 year old doll and how it was so different from dolls of today.

Our Science experiments will be fun as we learn about mixtures, who makes them, and what they are used for. The students' favourites are the ones that "blow up".

In Literacy we created postcard writing about our holidays and are learning about descriptive writing, phonetic spelling and continue to improve reading and comprehension. We are using communication circles to develop our speaking skills.

Our Mathematics studies are about various ways to do addition and subtraction including counting on, counting back and turn arounds.

Gail

YEAR 3 & 4 CLASS

Move It's theme for Year 3&4 is Oriental. Children love their work, as clearly demonstrated by their enthusiasm and achievement. They all hope that the audiences enjoy them as a "dragon".

2105 is International Year of Soil so we are having fun being soil scientists and geologists this term. The Australian Curriculum aligns well with this as the study of soil is included in the Earth and Space Sciences strand.

Year 3&4 students, along with the entire student body, enjoyed a festive conclusion to Term 1 with the Easter bonnet parade. Many children challenged their creativity, and came up with some delightful bonnets. (Thanks to Gail Sloan for inspiring us to participate in this world-wide tradition.)

Judy

YEAR 5, 6 & 7 CLASS

In Maths this term we've begun learning measurement. Students have been told what they need to know by the end of 5 weeks and have been given the option of how they learn these skills. They are able to book in lessons with me and also source video lessons on Khan Academy, MathsOnline and YouTube. Students can learn at their own pace and have greater ownership and responsibility over their learning. This process happens on Monday and Wednesday, while on Tuesdays and Thursdays students are required to apply their knowledge in problematized situations. On Fridays, students are asked to use their knowledge to contribute to a project. In this case the project is building a castle model. Skills students have learnt so far have been area and perimeter of rectangles, triangles and quadrilaterals.

We've also begun reading the class novel, Obernewtyn. This will form the basis of most reading and writing instruction. All students have been given a book, which they have been using to read along with me and highlight different parts of the text to find evidence to answer comprehension questions and identify text features.

Earlier this term we were talking about the ANZACS. We learnt about the different roles of the army, Gallipoli and we also explored and completed mini-projects on animals in the war (for which we've created a display).

We've begun Science by making perfume for Mother's Day. This will contribute to the students' knowledge of how to make mixtures and why we make mixtures. Making mixtures falls under Chemistry and therefore the students will carry out lots of experiments this term in order to explore how different substances interact with one another.

In Economics we'll be looking at the ethics behind the products we buy, as well as the economic pressures of different societies and how our own society is effected by factories like Holden being shut down.

We'll be continuing dance in Art which will culminate in the students producing their own video clip.

Eryn

FRENCH / LIBRARY

Reception to Year 2

The first topic for term 2 Health lessons focuses around recognising situations and opportunities to promote health, safety and wellbeing. We will be learning about healthy food and exploring how eating healthy foods can influence health and wellbeing.

In French the children have been learning the Days of the Week in the French language as well as singing songs and playing games based around this topic.

Year 3-4

Our first topic for the term looks at recognising situations and opportunities to promote health, safety and wellbeing and will examine their own eating patterns by researching The Australian Guide to Healthy Eating and identifying healthier food choices.

In French we will be asking and answering questions relating to concepts such as time, place or number, including days of the week, months and seasons, for example, Ca fait combien? Ca fait cinq; Quelle heure est-il? Il est dix heures; Aujourd'hui c'est vendredi? Non, c'est jeudi; En hiver il fait tres froid.

All classes are steadily working their way through their 12 books required to complete the Premier's Reading Challenge. Students have until September to complete the challenge.

Upper Primary

The upper primary class is studying Architecture and famous buildings and landmarks of Paris. We are also to endeavouring to speak the French language in general conversations as much as we can.

A bientot
Shirley

CLASSROOM REPORTS - 18TH MARCH 2015

RECEPTION & YEAR 1 CLASS

We have completed the Premier's Be Active Challenge now. The children really enjoyed their week of swimming lessons, and have been enjoying the lead up to the two Sports Days. We have held our own Oz-Animals Olympics within our class, partly as practice for the Sports Days, and partly so that we could draw out the maths involved, and work with concepts such as creating even-numbered teams, ordinal numbers, measuring time and length, as well as recording, presenting and analysing data.

In Week 8 we are going on an excursion to develop our knowledge of how farmers produce food. We are going to the Buckley's farm to learn about potato growing and harvesting, and the Beck's farm to learn about grazing sheep and growing fodder beets. In upcoming weeks Wendy Telfer is coming to talk to us about how Aboriginal people have traditionally sourced food, and Megan Beck is coming to talk to us about agronomy.

We have continued to have our Friday afternoon parent sharing sessions this year. Last Friday the children and parents went on a treasure hunt in this time with a map of the school as we have started to learn about maps as part of the Geography curriculum.

Ben

YEAR 1 & 2 CLASS

The students really enjoyed their swimming lessons and participated enthusiastically. Some chose to create water colour paintings of the experience. They also willingly took part in Clean up Australia Day.

We have been learning about "procedure writing", and integrated it with our communication skills speeches. They are making great progress with some wonderful presentations and giving each other constructive feedback. They made a paper bag puppet and a rainmaker musical instrument and wrote the procedures for them. They are enjoying their dance lessons for "Move IT" and are also very excited about Sports Day.

In Mathematics the class is studying shapes and learning about sides, faces, edges, angles, 2D and 3D.

They have been developing their problem solving skills with a daily problem/ riddle which they discuss with their parents and return with an answer the next day.

Gail

YEAR 3 & 4 CLASS

Swimming and Setting Up For Success meant that Year 3&4 class did little Visual Arts during the early weeks of the term. When we did commence work for the year, students demonstrated their desire to do more by completing some amazingly high quality work, some of which is on display in our front office. Please pass through that area of the school and enjoy Year 3&4 class' 2-D doodling. This was inspired by an artist called Harold Moore who created huge 3-D bronze sculptures after doodling with clay in his studio.

Move It is looking successful with, at time of writing this report, only one session having been experienced by our class. Children are extremely focused and working very hard from the beginning.

Judy

YEAR 5, 6 & 7 CLASS

In English we've been learning about how to write expositions and how language can change the power of what we're trying to say. We've continued to look at sentence structure with a focus on using connectives to create compound and complex sentences. In reading we've looked at predicting, summarizing, making connections, inferring character emotions and deconstructing the parts of an expository text.

In maths, the students have learnt to pose questions and represent the data collected from those questions. We've learnt what graphs are best for different types of data, as well as working out the range so we can develop class intervals. We've also looked at the mean, median and mode. We've used computers to generate graphs using the data collected from the students' social media survey.

In Art we've begun to learn about dance. We've discussed alignment and posture, as well as body parts. We've also looked at some basic dance moves and begun generating our own choreography. In addition to this, a group of students have been working tirelessly to become Mil Lel's first Cheerleading squad!

In Science we've been looking at the characteristics of living things and how we use these to classify. We've then learnt about dichotomous keys and why classification is important. We've also hypothesised and asked questions about how and why animals adapt to their environment.

In Geography, we've looked at how people's opinions change about the environment depending on their relationship to it. We've been examining the effect of deforestation on animals, people, the economy and the planet.

Eryn

RENCH / LIBRARY

The French room has been a very busy place this week with Sports Teams working on their banners for our Sports Day.

French and Health lessons have also followed the Sports Day Theme for the Junior and Middle Primary classes. The R-2 classes have been looking at the Keys to Success and how they can use them on Sports Day. In French lessons they have been learning what the various sports are called in the French language. R-2 are also studying their house colour : Wattle/yellow-jaune. Banksia/green-vert. Boronia/blue-bleu and Bottlebrush/red-rouge.

On Friday the 27th of February the classes participated in Clean up Australia Day. The 3-4 class did some work on this topic and found some interesting facts about the Great Pacific Garbage Dump. This is an area out in the ocean where plastic products have accumulated in to a big mass of rubbish. As a matter of fact we discovered through further research that around the world there are now five of these sites out in the world's oceans.

All year levels work on Languages on Line at times during lessons. This is a very good languages site with games and activities in the French language. It is a Victorian Education Department site and you can access it by googling www.languages online.com. Click on French topics. The activities are graded from easy to harder.

A bientot
Shirley

CLASSROOM REPORTS - 10TH FEBRUARY 2015

RECEPTION & YEAR 1 CLASS

2015 has begun well. We have had 16 brand new Reception children join the class, and they have settled into the class and school very successfully. We have spent part of the first two weeks exploring our school values, setting up class expectations, and getting to know each other.

From Week 3 we will be learning how food is produced. We will look at how a wide range of plants and animals are farmed for food production, how the weather impacts on this, what tools and processes are required, and we'll also be investigating the features of farms. We will compare how food is produced locally with how traditional Aboriginal people source food, as well as people in Asia. This will be incorporated into English, Maths, Science, Design & Technology, The Arts, and Geography lessons.

We have sponsored a child from India this term and we will be writing letters to him, and learning more about where he is from.

Ben

YEAR 1 & 2 CLASS

The students have settled in well and I am enjoying getting to know them.

We have been busy setting standards for quality work and a code of cooperation. This involved lots of group discussion and brainstorming. We displayed our standards on the classroom walls.

In preparation for developing communication skills to improve our speaking and presenting, we discussed and recorded expectations for speaking and listening skills.

We introduced ourselves and created a personal identity, both written and illustrated. We discovered we have some things that are the same as other people, and some things are unique to us.

We discussed the need to use good manners and wrote a book about it. We also watched a youtube video by Ms Sloan's son, Xavier, about why we need to use our manners.

Counting to 20 and 100 has been fun and we are learning to write numerals the correct way.

We have been learning about correct letter formation, when to use capital letters and finger spaces to improve the presentation of our work. We watched the video, "Austin's Butterfly" about quality work.

After Charlie brought a claw from a blue swimmer crab, we did some online research to learn what they look like, how they are caught, and cooked.

We are looking forward to swimming lessons in week four.

Gail

YEAR 3 & 4 CLASS

Yr 3&4 class has been studying numerous visual texts, enjoying the quality of the vision that our new touch-screen offers. We have been able to address such things as audience, purpose, text type, punctuation and tense while we have been learning what being successful really means, about being positive, and of course, the keys to success.

We put our team skills to effect by working out dance moves to a song, "Don't Stop, Never Give Up". This was designed as a pre-cursor to our Move It lessons, and students certainly discovered that being a choreographer is not an easy task! Nonetheless, many efforts were really well done.

Judy

YEAR 5, 6 & 7 CLASS

The term has started with the students and I setting our class expectations, focusing on what it means to be a good learner. We've also discussed the structure of the class and what our days/weeks will look like.

We've learnt about the ethics behind taking 'sefies', how they can lead to narcissism and mental health issues. We agreed that as long as 'selfies' were taken in moderation, they could be a legitimate form of expression. We then began taking our own, as self-portraits that displayed different parts of our personalities. Our next step is to discuss the implications of posting photos online and the effects this can have on our lives.

In English, we've been looking at sentence structure. We've been breaking sentences down and discovering what all the different parts are called, in an effort to establish a meta-langue to be used when discussing our writing. We've also begun to look at the different features of exposition writing.

We've started to look at the issues facing animal extinction and how humans play a role in this process.

In Maths, we've been discovering the finer details of data collection and will be moving onto displaying this data, as well as learning to interpret it.

We've set up our reading groups, the R5 program and Book Club. Students have started looking at different reading comprehension strategies and many of the students have already had individual conferencing with me, in which we've discussed goals for them to work on during the week.

Eryn

FRENCH / HEALTH / MUSIC / LIBRARY

French

All classes have made a smooth start to French lessons. All have briefly touched on why we learn French at Mil-Lel and children have thought of many good reasons. Some are:

"in case we visit France", "so we know what to order at a French restaurant",

"we may need to speak French to get a job as a journalist overseas or to get a job in the wine industry".

Library

All classes can now begin reading their books for The Premiers's Reading Challenge. They will have a form on which to write the names of the books they have read. Books can be chosen from our Library at school and need to be at a suitable level for the student. They need to have read 8 from school and 4 from home by early September.

A bientot
Shirley

CLASSROOM REPORTS - 9TH SEPTEMBER 2014

RECEPTION & YEAR 1 CLASS

We have finished investigating local places, and the children really enjoyed this. We also learned about special places in Asian countries. I don't think the children will be swimming in the Ganges River any time soon after we learned about how it is used by the local people in India! For the rest of the term we will have a joint Science and Geography focus of observing the weather and learning how weather conditions impact on the habitats and living conditions of people, plants and animals.

We now have a maths reflection journal that we record our lessons in most days of the week. The children love reading it in spare moments, and it is working really well to consolidate their mathematical thinking. Our tadpoles are thriving and we are getting excited about them soon growing back legs. They are getting very large! We are going on an excursion to see the Patch Theatre production of Cranky Bear which we are all looking forward to very much. We have been reading the book in class and using it in literacy lessons over this past week.

Ben

Download File Size File Type
Term 1 Week 3 Class Page 485 KB Adobe PDF
Term 2 Week 5 Class Page 425 KB Adobe PDF
Term 3 Week 7 Class Page 265 KB Adobe PDF

YEAR 1 & 2 CLASS

So far this term in Writing we have spent time practicing writing recounts, procedures and we have just started writing information reports. In Maths we have explored place value, money and location and time. We will be learning about volume next week. In Science we have been exploring earth and space science with a unit called 'Up, down and all around' from the Primary Connections series. In Society and Environment we are investigating geography. We have been looking at the characteristics of our local environments. We had an absolute ball at Music is Fun and Book Week and are looking forward to attending the Cranky Bear performance this Friday.

Danielle

Download File Size File Type
Term 1 Week 5 Class Page 1.15 MB Adobe PDF

YEAR 3 & 4 CLASS

In Science students have been studying forces: push, pull, friction, gravity etc. In teams they used elastic to propel matchboxes (paperclips inside c f matches!) and measure the distances travelled from three different positions, with the elastic stretched further each time.

The meaning of variable, and the importance of only having one variable in order to conduct a fair test has been important learning. Students used their data to construct a hand-drawn graph and analyse the results.

In Maths students studied possible outcomes of rolling a die. They collected data on sixty die rolls and constructed a graph using Excel. Data was analysed. We have also been learning about chance events and the possible outcomes.

In Visual Arts students have created some brilliant collages and gorgeous sponge prints.

Judy

Download File Size File Type
Term 1 Week 7 Class Page 95 KB Adobe PDF

YEAR 5, 6 & 7 CLASS

The UP class attended the Djuki Mala (a.k.a. The Chooky Dancers) performance on August 26th, which was a fantastic outing. All students wrote rave reviews which are now published on their individual blogs.

In Geography this term we are investigating migration and as part of this project we have surveyed Mrs Lassaline's students as they are migrants. In Term 4, we will meet with them and participate in a literacy project together. We have had our group poem "Summer Storm" published on a poetry website. We are about to start an international collaboration with a class somewhere in the world. Part of the project is working out where the other class is located. We are looking forward to the challenge.

Emmanuelle

Download File Size File Type
Term 1 Week 9 Class Page 417 KB Adobe PDF
Term 3 Week 3 Class Page 67 KB Adobe PDF

FRENCH / HEALTH / MUSIC / LIBRARY

Download File Size File Type
Term 2 Week 3 Class Page 191 KB Adobe PDF
Term 3 Week 5 Class Page 515 KB Adobe PDF

CLASSROOM REPORTS - 5TH AUGUST 2014

RECEPTION & YEAR 1 CLASS

We will be having a strong Geography and Science focus this term. The questions we will be investigating include

We went on an excursion on Monday around the local area to investigate the features of some local places and to identify who uses them and how, and to investigate how they are cared for. We visited the old Mullel waterhole, the Mil Lel Cheese factory, Aboriginal tree carvings at the Beck's property, and the Mil Lel Hall and cricket oval. We visited the tennis courts also on that day.

On Thursday some police officers visited our class to talk about bike safety, and in a couple of weeks people from the Natural Resources Management Board are visiting us to talk about frogs and their sustainability. By then some of our class tadpoles might have almost become frogs!

Ben

YEAR 1 & 2 CLASS

This term in writing we will be spending the first few weeks revising recounts and procedures and then move onto writing information reports. In maths we plan to cover place value, money, chance and location and transformation. In science we will be exploring earth and space science with a unit called 'Up, down and all around' from the Primary Connections series. We will be exploring natural, made and managed features that undergo change. We will be investigating the daily, weekly and seasonal changes in our local environment. In Society and Environment we are investigating geography. We will be exploring the characteristics of our local environments. We are also looking forward to attending Music is Fun later in week 6.

Danielle

YEAR 3 & 4 CLASS

Children have enjoyed using charcoal in Visual Arts. They managed a rather messy medium very well! Their work had to include shape in some format. We discussed shapes within shapes; increasing and decreasing size of the same shape; and irregular and informal shapes. Visit our classroom and see the clever work that they have completed.

Philosophy For Children (P4C) is being advocated world-wide. Studies are showing that it is better to study philosophical issues before "set" ways of thinking cause less open-minded skills. We shall be studying philosophy - endeavouring to increase critical and creative thinking skills, ethical behaviour and intercultural understanding.
So far we have looked at these:

Judy

YEAR 5, 6 & 7 CLASS

Projects and activities the UP class is looking forward to this term include the Debating Eisteddfods this Wednesday and Thursday. The class has entered four teams into the event this year, and the students have been practising their debating skills since the middle of term 2. Our class has also been fundraising in order to attend the Djuki Mala (a.k.a The Chooky Dancers) performance on August 26th.

In literacy, we are continuing our ongoing work with comprehension, grammar and vocabulary. After debating, we will be studying information reports this term. We will also participate in a national poetry competition, "The Poetry Object". In maths, we have been working on fractions, decimals and percentages and the students are about to embark on "The $1,000,000 project". In science, our learning this term is about matter and mixtures, and the students started off their experiments by making sherbet on Tuesday. In geography, we are investigating human migration.

Emmanuelle

FRENCH / HEALTH / MUSIC / LIBRARY

Recorder Eisteddfod

On the 14th August the Year 1-4 students will be participating at the Mount Gambier Eisteddfod. We will be travelling to the Wehl Street Theatre by bus and performing at approximately 10:30am. Parents are welcome to come to the theatre to watch (there is an entry fee). The Year 1 & 2 group will be playing Gypsy Dance and Caterpillar Bye Bye and the Year 3 & 4 group will perform Dublin Dan and Shrimps on Tour.

French

All classes have been learning about the Tour de France. The Upper Primary is moving on to learn about Bastille Day and The French Revolution and the Junior Primary classes are learning more expressions and greetings. The Year 3 & 4 class will be learning all about shops in a town and the things you can buy.

Premier's Reading Challenge

All classes are steadily working through their reading challenge sheets. The challenge finishes at the end of this term. Once a book has been completed parents and caregivers can ask the child a few questions to ascertain if they have understood what they have read. We do this at school as well before we sign off the books.

Au revoir, Shirley

CLASSROOM REPORTS - 17TH JUNE 2014

Reception and Year 1

In the second half of this term we will be harvesting vegetables from our vegetable garden. Last week we picked some lettuce and made some cheese and lettuce sandwiches with it. We wrote a procedure about how to make sandwiches, and we also noticed that the lettuce spinner we used worked because it had cogs, which are one of the simple machines we have been learning about since our visit to the Da Vinci's Machines exhibition. The children really enjoyed making a robot arm recently which was also inspired by the exhibition.

We have just started exploring how different workers in the community help us. Children's parents have been coming in to talk about their occupations and how they assist people in the community. The children had been gaining experience in formulating and asking questions as a result of these visits. We have also just begun a new Science topic in which we'll be looking at light and sound. We'll be learning about the sources of light and sound, how they are produced, how they travel, and the roles they play in our lives and community.

Ben

Year 1 and 2 Class

In the 1/2 class we have been learning about different communities in SOSE. We had a great time on our excursion to Reidy Park where we explored the differences between our school and theirs. In science we have been investigating mixtures. The children have made some interesting mixtures at school and also brought in mixtures from home to share. We have been learning about time, shape and measurement in maths. The children made amazing 3D castles that we shared for our open classroom.

Danielle

Year 3 and 4 Class

Our major focus has been on writing information reports. Linking to their totems that children made from salt dough, they have researched the animal that they chose for their totems.

Whilst children have been learning interesting facts about their animal, the important learning has been about the literacy of this text type. Some of this is as follows:

Judy

Year 5, 6 and 7 Class

After a few weeks spent on learning about the Ancient Romans, the students have started to research their history assignments. This term, they were given the option to plan their own assignment, which meant they had to negotiate with the teacher about the form their work would take, and those who chose this option also had to come up with a rubric against which their work will be marked. The students all enjoyed the Da Vinci Machines excursion and produced some informative presentations about the forces at play in some of Leonardo's machines. In Maths, we have been working on data representation and number. In literacy, we have started our work on Debating. Each week, we participate in the 100 Word Challenge, an international creative writing event for children under the age of 16. To see some of the students' posts for the 100 Word Challenge, visit the blog and click on the "100 Word Challenge" tab.

Emmanuelle

French / Health

Reception/1

This month the class has looked at the Seasons. We observed the trees in the yard and then completed a worksheet about " Automne". We have also done some work on Winter-hiver and used the Scootle Website to research words that describe winter weather. This week the class have been learning some more Greeting words-cavabien (I am well), pardon and bon appetit.

The 1-2 Class

We have also been doing work on the seasons and learning words that we can use when we write. In Health, lessons around the Child Protection Curriculum have continued and we have read the book Bear and Chook and identified safe and unsafe behaviour. When looking at trusting people we worked out our definition of trust and ways we can be trusted.

The 3-4 Class

Since our visit to the Riddoch Art Gallery the class have been working on powerpoint presentations about the Da Vinci Exhibition. We are also learning more greeting words such as de rie, Jesuisdesolee, Queldommage and cen'est pas grave. Students made a weather wheel last Friday to use in class.

In History we have continued our work on The First Fleet and are making maps and learning about conditions on the boats.

The 5-6-7 Class

As a follow up to our visit to the Da Vinci Machines Exhibition the class had a Da Vinci activity session. They were put into groups and completed tasks such as Badge-making, a Da Vinci word wall, wordfind and cloze activity (filling in missing words).The class have also made a Louvre display where they drew a French style window and added it to the display.

Music

R-4 students have continued working on learning about instruments you might find in an orchestra. The 1-2 and 3-4 classes have also done some Recorder work. Year 3-4s have also been singing Bound For Botany Bay as part of their First Fleet work.

A bientot, Shirley

CLASSROOM REPORTS - 20TH MAY 2014

Reception and Year 1

For the first five weeks of this term we are going to have a strong Science and Design & Technology focus, where we will working with an inquiry question of 'How do machines move and work?' We have been on an excursion to the Da Vinci's Machine Exhibition at the Riddoch Art Gallery which has served question of 'How do machines move and work?' We have been on an excursion to the Da Vinci's Machine Exhibition at the Riddoch Art Gallery which has served as a wonderful introduction to simple machines such as levers, wheels, inclines, etc. We are exploring these machines further, and learning about the forces that make them work.

For the second half of the term we will have a SOSE (Studies of Society and Environment) focus where we will work with an inquiry question of 'How do people in the community help us? I'm anticipating inviting parents to come and talk about their roles in the community.

Ben

Year 1 and 2 Class

In the 1/2 class this term we have welcomed Shannon Baldock to our group. We are exploring the topic of 'Communities' for Society and Environment this term; we will be looking at both local and wider communities.

In science we are investigating mixtures. The children are enjoying experimenting with different substances to make mixtures and have made some very interesting concoctions at home to share with the class. We have been looking at shape in maths this term; the children have made some amazing castles using 3D shapes.

Danielle

Year 3 and 4 Class

This term the Yr 3&4s have studied "Home To Mother" which is the children's version of "The Rabbit-proof Fence".

Links have been made across the curriculum:
In Maths we made a timeline comparing the time that Aboriginal Australians have been here to when the first fleet arrived. We also worked out how long it has been since the first fleet landed in Australia. We shared our strategies for this.
In Visual Arts we mixed salt dough and touched on ratios and proportions. Fractions learning occurred when our team of three had to share out our salt dough. We used our salt dough to make animal totems and painted them.
In singing we have learnt a song, "Wakaniniyana?" in the YortaYorta language.
The YortaYorta people come from the Murray River region near Echuca, so we have been able to do some geography too.

Judy

Year 5, 6 and 7 Class

The Upper Primary Class has started its own blog. This blog is being used for students to learn digital skills in an authentic way, as well as to participate in online learning projects and to showcase their work.

The Upper Primary Class has had a busy and productive start to term 2: in Maths, our efforts have concentrated on word problems and general problem solving, as we are preparing ourselves for the NAPLAN test in week 3. In Literacy, our work is ongoing in the areas of reading, spelling, vocabulary and grammar. In writing, the students have been revising their exposition and narrative writing skills, including two timed exercises in order to practise NAPLAN tests conditions. In Science, our class has started a unit of work on Forces - this work will link with the Da Vinci exhibition. In History, we are investigating Ancient Rome. Book Club has started again and the children were all well prepared for their first session last week.

Emmanuelle

French / Health

Term 2 has continued to be busy in the French Room.

Reception/1 have been learning about Leonardo Da Vinci and have found out that although he was born in Italy, his famous painting "The Mona Lisa" hangs in the Louvre in Paris.

The 1-2 class have been learning how to write the French words for parts of the body and the song Tete epaulet genoux et pieds. In Health they have continued work around the Child Protection curriculum on how to stay safe.

The 3-4 class has been learning about how to write about their friends in French. Next week they are visiting the Da Vinci machines exhibition at the Riddoch Art Gallery and will be following up with work about Leonardo and his work at the Louvre. The class will also be going to the Library for a session on History. In History we have begun work on The First Fleet.

The 5-6-7 class have also been working on Da-Vinci and will also be visiting the Riddoch Gallery next Friday.

MUSIC

R-4 students have been learning about instruments and so far have looked at percussion and wind instruments. They have also learnt about tempo and know that Presto means fast, Allegro means medium and Largo means slow. All have been learning the French song-Frere Jacques.

A bientot, Shirley

Classroom Reports - 18th March 2014

Reception and Year 1

We have recently had another child join our class. Her name is Alyssa Emmerson and she is with us until Term 3. Also, we have had Ms Dangerfield with us as a teaching student on a university placement. She is with us for four weeks, finishing after week 8.

The children have really enjoyed their week of swimming this term, and they have been enjoying sports day practices. We have been busy recording our physical activity for the Premier's Be Active Challenge.

The class has been decorating boxes that children are putting some work in about themselves and their needs. They will be taking them home at the end of the term. As part of learning about ourselves, we have been learning about our five senses. We've also been learning about the needs of animals, and a few weeks ago many of the children brought their pets to school for a pet parade. We have just started learning about our need for play, and we are looking at how Aboriginal children have played, and what they have used. We will be looking for natural items in our environment and making games from them. We are in the process of organising a couple of speakers to talk to us: someone to talk with us about how Aboriginal people survived in the natural habitat, and someone from the Mt Gambier library to talk about The Cave Club.

Ben

Year 1 and 2 Class

In the grade 1/2 class we have made a great start to the year. In writing this term we have focused on descriptive writing and recounts. In maths we have learnt about place value, addition and subtraction and fractions. In Society and Environment we are exploring the theme 'Workers in the Community', we have looked at needs and wants and the roles and responsibilities of people at home. In Science we have been investigating the topic of 'What's Alive'. We have been learning the characteristics of living and non-living things and we have been observing seeds growing that have been exposed to different conditions.

Danielle

Year 3 and 4 Class

Year 3/4 students have written some excellent narratives in the first half of this term. They have shown good understanding of the purpose of narratives - to entertain. Now we are well into learning how to write expositions, with the purpose of persuading the audience.

The Visual Art work has been of a high standard. Students have really applied themselves to create fabulous rubbings; amazingly high-quality sketches; and paintings that show their ability to use and understand different tones.

Swimming was enjoyed by all! Sports Days are special! Students are having fun without realizing all the life skills that they are learning! Wonderful class! Efforts of which to be proud!

Judy

Year 5, 6 and 7 Class

Our class novel this term has been "Out Of My Mind", the story of a fifth grader with cerebral palsy who can only express herself through her communication board. All students created their own communication boards a fortnight ago and our class spent one whole lesson attempting to converse with one another and executing small jobs around the school with their board as their sole means of communication. In their reflective paragraphs after the experience, the students commented on the importance of word choice when designing an effective board, on the degree of frustration they felt during the task, and on the way their empathy towards people with a disability has increased since the exercise. In reading and writing, we have been focusing on powerful narratives and the students have worked hard to include techniques such as "strong leads" and "magnify the moment" in their writing. In maths we have revisited problem solving strategies, perimeter and area, place value concepts, factors and multiples, prime and composite numbers and addition strategies. In history, the children are about to start constructing dioramas representing life on the gold fields. In science we are studying light.

Emmanuelle

French / Health

A bientot, Shirley

Classroom Reports - 11th February 2014

Reception and Year 1

There have been 11 new children start school at Mil Lel in our class this term, with two of those being Year 1 students. They have all settled in well. For the first two weeks of this term we have been learning about what makes a powerful learner. We have been reading a book called The Very Busy Spider which is about being persistent, which is one of these qualities. We have also been examining what each of the school values mean to us. We have also been learning about the first Habit of Happy kids, and next week we will be setting a class goal based around this to work towards.

For the rest of the month we are going to be learning about ourselves and what our needs are. Each child will have a box about themselves that we will be decorating and keeping a lot of the work we do in it. We will then be comparing and contrasting our needs with people from other cultures, as well as animals and plants. We will be planting vegetables in our vegetable garden in Week 3 to complement this. One of the needs we'll be identifying is 'Play' and we'll be researching how Aboriginal people have made toys in the past, and we will make and design our own toys using natural materials.

With swimming and sports days happening in this term, it is going to be a busy and enjoyable one.

Ben

Year 1 and 2 Class

In the grade 1/2 class we have welcomed a new member, Isabelle, who is in grade 1. We have started off the year by looking at Program Achieve which assists us in becoming successful learners by looking at the 5 keys of success. In writing this term we will focus on descriptive writing and recounts. In maths we have started off by developing our number sense. We will then move onto addition and subtraction, learning and practicing using mental strategies and representing the problems informally. In Society and Environment we will be exploring the theme 'Workers in the Community'. In Science and Technology we will be investigating the topic of 'What's Alive'.

Danielle

Year 3 and 4 Class

2014 has begun with some difficult concepts: constructing class rules, SRC voting, feedback and success. Our work has also featured a strong start to our literacy and numeracy.

Children are slowly understanding the need to have overarching ideas in rules, as opposed to every rule starting with the word "Don't..."!

We aim to establish a community of learners where improvement and effort are valued over high scores. The "tick or cross" is secondary to being able to explain our thinking, and making creative and flexible solutions.

Feedback is a challenging concept. Most Y34s now understand what it is, and we are progressing towards understanding the type of feedback that is valuable, and the type that is not so valuable. Another focus has been on attitude so that students can use feedback most effectively for their own learning.

Judy

Year 5, 6 and 7 Class

Our 23 students are settling in well into the Upper Primary classroom. During the first two weeks, the students have become familiar with routines and general expectations (work and behaviour), including how to work together as a group or team. They have worked with myself to establish class rules and guidelines to success. Some testing has taken place in the areas of spelling and mathematics. The data collected from these tests allows me to take current students' skills and individual needs into account when planning for subject teaching.

Emmanuelle

French / Health

All classes have settled in well and are enthusiastic and well rested after the holiday break. My role in the school is varied and I am based in the French/Art room most days and at some stage during the week have all classes. A brief summary follows below.

French

All classes have French lessons with me and we cover a wide variety of topics.

Health Reception - 4

Year 3 & 4 Class Friday and Wednesday afternoon.

Music R-4

Library R-4

Premier's Reading Challenge

All classes will be receiving their forms this week.

Please feel welcome to pop in to the French room to have a look at some of the work the children are doing.

This week the Upper Primary came up with great ideas about why it is advantageous to learn French as a second language.

A bientot, Shirley

Classroom Reports - 3rd December 2013

Reception Class

The second half of this term has been a busy one. We've been rehearsing for the school concert and rehearsals seem to be coming along nicely so far. Our concert item is going to be based around the Australian version of the song The Twelve Days of Christmas. Our class enjoyed participating in the Mt Gambier Christmas Pageant, especially because we were able to sit on the float.

We have been enjoying learning about special places as part of the Geography curriculum. The children put in a lot of effort recently when they designed and constructed models of their special places. It was great to see the final products. We've also been learning about how things move. We've recently been looking at ways animals move and we are about to do some predicting and testing about how different objects will roll/slide down ramps. We've also learned about the Aboriginal origins of the name 'Mil Lel'. In the last couple of weeks of the term we will be doing some Christmas art and craft.

Ben

Year 1 and 2 Class

The 1/2 class has been focusing on Indigenous Australians in Society and Environment. We have had a strong focus on Aboriginal Dreamtime stories and their relevance to us. We have also looked into the culture of traditional Indigenous people and the differences and similarities to our own lives. In English we have read and thoroughly enjoyed the novel Matilda and have just started reading The Magic Faraway Tree, which the children are enjoying just as much. We have been learning to write expositions in writing as well as revisiting texts such as procedures, recounts and of course doing creative writing. In maths we have looked at 3D shapes, money, and time and are currently doing an investigation into planning a pizza party for the end of term. We have been super busy rehearsing for the end of year concert and can't wait to show our families.

Danielle

Year 3 and 4 Class

Students have researched, written and published information reports on an insect. The quality of their work has been outstanding. A number of students were able to complete this challenging task independently.

In Visual Arts students have made creative sculptures, some of which have intricate detail. They are impressive!

On Thursday 28th November we had an extremely educational day at the Princess Margaret Rose Caves. Children explored many technical words such as helictites, columns and pillars. The formations in the cave are amazing. Our trip was made possible through SRC funds being made available to each class; Y3&4 students definitely made a great choice about how their money was to be spent!

Judy

Year 5, 6 and 7 Class

The Upper Primary Class is a busy place right now as students are getting ready for the many end of year activities. Practising for the school concert is an important aspect of this, and with less than two weeks to go, daily practices are needed. Students have memorised their parts and are working on their delivery skills. In Science the children are creating fictitious animals that have interesting adaptations to their environment. In Geography, we have teams of students racing around the world to locate the infamous thief Carmen SanDiego. During their travels, they learn about the different countries they visit. In Maths, the 6 and 7s have been working on algebra while the 5s have been conducting maths investigations. In literacy, we continue our work on comprehension, spelling and reading. We attended a most entertaining session with children's author Justin D'Ath last week and our creative writing is inspired by his techniques.

Emmanuelle

French / Health

Library

It has been pleasing to note that all children in the school completed the Premier's Reading Challenge. A great effort! Medals and certificates have been presented. Thank you to parents/teachers and children for the effort put into the challenge.

French

A successful French activities afternoon was held last Wednesday. The Upper Primary students negotiated the activities, organised them and supervised on the day with a small amount of adult help. Everyone appeared to be enjoying themselves and thank you to all parents who came along.

Music

The Reception-Year 4 classes are all practising their recorder item for the concert and I know everyone is waiting with anticipation to see and hear them performing.

Shirley

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