Monday, 17 March 2014

Home and School

I just wanted to say a very big thank you to Lisa Avery who completed her term as chairperson of the Home and School Committee on Monday. Lisa has been a powerhouse of energy and enthusiasm. She has provided great leadership and motivation to the team. I am glad that she will continue to be a part of the committee fundraising for a new playground.
Under Lisa’s leadership the Home and School Committee have:
·         Created a blog for the committee
·         Increased the use of the Facebook page for communication, (Please click “like” all you Facebook users out there!)
·         Held two discos in one night
·         Initiated a fundraising movie night
·         Organised an amazing Ladies Shopping Night
·         Arranged school lunches for term one
·         Involved children in fundraising events
·         A clear plan of fundraising for 2014.
·         Applied for external funding starting with Infinity Foundation.
·         Run superb BBQ’s in terms 1 and 4.
Thank you to all the other wonderful committee members and others who help the committee for events. The Home and School Committee bring a wonderful richness to our school community.
There are two upcoming Home and School Events: The Brainwave Trust fundraising speaker (details in the newsletter) and a Twilight toy and book sale.
The Home and School Committee are hosting a massive toy and book sale, sweet stall and BBQ on Friday 4 April. It’s about raising funds for our new playground and all families and friends of Papakowhai School and community are welcome.
How can YOU help us prepare for this event?
Clear out your old toys and books and send them to school. There will be a coloured box for each whanau group at the Office from Monday for your child to place their donated items. There will be a prize for the whanau group with the best collection rate.
Email by 26 March if you are able to help with cakes or treats for the sweet stall.
Email if you have connections with a local business that can donate toys or other items to be auctioned or raffled.
Kind regards

Mark Smith


Being a parent is an awesome job but it is also very challenging. At times it is hard to know if you are doing the right thing or not. I have three children of my own and they are all very different. I have certainly benefitted over the years from going to parenting courses or reading books with helpful tips.

I am looking forward to going to hear Kathryn Berkett in our school hall on Wednesday 26th March. I have heard great things about the Brainwave Trust. I understand they only promote speakers of the highest calibre. I have three teenagers living at my house so I need all the help I can get, but don’t think you are off the hook, your children will morph into teenagers before you know it.

The proceeds are all going to our playground development so why don’t you bring a friend or two and have fun while learning a trick or two. See the flyer on the back of this newsletter.

Thank you to all the parents who came out in the rain and cold to parent interviews. We had 315 appointments for 330 children, a very impressive turnout rate. Thank you for taking the time to complete the goal setting sheet and checking contact details. If you were not able to make an interview time, or were unable to complete them in time for the interview, we would still like you to return these forms to your child’s teacher by Friday please. I really appreciate the way parents at Papakowhai School take a vital interest in their child’s learning.

Many parents want to know how they can help at home. The best way to do this is to read with your child when they are young and take an interest in what they are reading as they get older. Go on our Maths blog to find out what number knowledge your child should have at each level and practise this together. Encouraging completion or taking an interest in Mathletics has also proven to be very beneficial for many of our children. A small amount done regularly is certainly better for parents and for kids than a huge infrequent effort.

I have had some feedback from parents at interviews about how we classify children in year groups. At Papakowhai School children who start school in February and March of the year they turn 5 will move to Year 2 at the beginning of the next year automatically, unless there are special circumstances, which will be discussed with the parents. A child whose fifth birthday is in April or May will only move to year 2 at the discretion of the Principal in consultation with the parents, according to the ability and needs of each particular child. A child whose birthday is in June or later will remain in year 1 for another year.

Parents may request a meeting with me to discuss the class placement for their child at any time. If you have a child with an April or May birthday and you would like to discuss this further please don’t hesitate to contact me.

Kind regards

Mark Smith