Dear Parents & Carers
Afternoon Pick Up and Morning Drop Off
Last week the traffic officers were on Union St and Farquhar St at afternoon pick up time. They were very complimentary about the use of name cards on the sun visors and expressed their wish that other schools would follow this practice. Thank you for helping to make our pick-up procedures run smoothly and safely. If you have not placed your name card in your car please do so as soon as possible. If you need further cards please contact the office.
Further feedback was around the need for not parking in the Collection zone and getting out to put bags and children in cars. What was observed was that a number of parents are arriving too early and parking here for an extended period of time.
The purpose of a Kiss and Drop Collect zone is to quickly and safely move children on and off the site. We ask that you not get out of your cars at drop off or collection time and that your children enter and exit the car from the kerb side, not the road side. If you do need to assist your child then it is advisable that you park in a designated parking area to do this rather than use the drop off and collection zone. The traffic officer also advised us that they would be making regular visits.
For those parents who are not using the Kiss and Drop zone but are crossing the road with your child, please cross at the crossing as a number of parents have had near misses with parents walking in between cars as drivers are about to pull out. Remember, we need to be modelling the practices that we want our children to be following and I am sure that you would all expect your children to cross at traffic lights, especially when they are so close.
As of next week, Tuesday 11th June, at both pick up zones we will be introducing a cone system to further improve our pick-up procedures. There will be 4 different coloured cones on the footpath. You are asked to make sure that your name card is visible to the staff on duty before you pull up. They will then call your child’s name and state a colour. As you pull up, your children will be waiting at that colour cone and they can very swiftly enter the car. All cars are then to pull out in turn. For example, if someone is at the front pink cone and you are at the next green cone, you are not to pull out and go around the pink cone car. You are required to wait until the car in front has pulled out first and then you follow. We believe that having your children ready at the cones when you pull up will make things run much faster and more smoothly. Please talk with your children about the expectations you have of them in regard to being at cone when you pull up and in getting very quickly and independently into the car.
Thank you for your support in helping to keep not only your child safe but all our children safe.
Over the last couple of weeks I have had the pleasure of meeting many of our families for Kinder 2020. It is a special time to get to know families and to talk about their children, our great school and learning. If you have a child starting school next year and haven’t arranged for an interview time, please contact the Office as soon as possible to arrange this. In addition to this, if you know of anyone who has a school aged child please suggest to them that they ring to book a tour and to collect an enrolment pack.
Hands and Feet
Over the last couple of weeks, hand and feet cutouts were sent home, asking you to record your family’s thoughts on the hands about what they liked about current/past practices in the school and on the feet the direction you feel our school needs to take. Your information helps us to plan for the future of St Joseph’s. We ask that you return these completed hands and feet to school by next Wednesday 13th June.
Many of you will have noticed that the bench seats under the COLA that the children sit on for assemblies are relocated around the school grounds for a lot of the week. The reason for this is so that there is more playing space for the children of a lunch and recess time, as the COLA area cannot be safely used when all the benches are under it. The benches are in place for our longer Monday morning assemblies and then they are moved after this. Each class decided on where they would like to move their seats to. This has led to more social seating arrangements and the benches are getting more use now. They are then put back into position on a Friday ready for Monday morning. The assemblies throughout the week are short ones where the children, weather dependent, sit or stand for their duration before going to class. If there is a longer assembly or liturgy planned for a day other than Monday the benches are put back under the COLA.
Thank you to all those who volunteer in so many ways here at St Joseph’s. Your skills and time are invaluable to us. As you are aware it is a requirement that anyone who wishes to volunteer throughout the year (reading in the classroom, canteen, excursions, carnivals etc) is required to have a Working With Children Check number which can be obtained from
In addition to this it is a requirement that all volunteers undergo a Volunteer Induction session as well as be issued with the updated diocesan Volunteers Handbook
We ran the first of our two Volunteers Induction session on Monday evening. If you didn’t manage to come along to that please come along to the next one, which is on Wednesday 12th June at 9:00am in the Library.
"Thank God for Catholic Schools"
Earlier this week in The Australian newspaper there was an article commenting on how fortunate it is that we have a Catholic Schools System in our country and how it not only gives choice to parents regarding the schooling of their children but in particular how it saves the government an inordinate amount of money, that can be then put into resourcing the state education system. Below are the links to this article as well as to a follow up statement from Catholic Schools NSW. They both make for an interesting read as well give accurate information to help explain the funding situation of Catholic schools to those who are unsure of it or who have misconceptions regarding this. I hope you manage to find the time to read these
|10 June||Public Holiday|
|11 June||Pentecost Liturgy||8.50am COLA|
|12 June||Basketball||Kinder - 3B|
|13 June||Basketball||3G - 6|
|14 June||Year 2 Participating in Mass||10.15am St Joseph's Church|
|19 June||Basketball||3G - 6|
|20 June||Athletics Carnival|
|21 June||Year 1 Participating in Mass||10.15am St Joseph's Church|
Congratulations to this fortnight's Principal Awards recipients Abi Taber, Alex Seysener, Aria Ford, Lila Kiem, Ellen Moran, Jack McKenzie, Thomas Mooney, Angus Green, Ziggy Brett, Bridget Kaczor-Byrnes, Andie Leach, Gabe Farrow, Rex Kirkovski, Luca Avery and Elizabeth Dinneen
Year 3 Grade Sharing Assembly
In Week 5, Year 3 presented a fabulous Grade Sharing Assembly. Students shared of their learning when reading Charlotte’s Web and The 27th Annual African Hippopotamus Race. They presented diamante poems, examples of these are below.
In Science and Technology, students explained how light is reflected from a mirror to other objects and how the temperature of water changes liquids to a gas. In Creative Art, Year 3 shared how they have been learning about the artist, Ken Done. Children created and displayed their own Ken Done inspired artworks. To end with, children entertained the audience by dancing to the Waka Waka and it was great to see everyone joining in, even the parents. Year 3 loved sharing all the wonderful learning they have enjoyed so far this year!
St Joseph's Read-A-Thon
You know the feeling: You grab your book, sit down, and suddenly you’re lost, traveling through a new world with a whole set of unfamiliar characters. For each of us, this is an escape from the daily grind, but, as you know, for your children it’s more than that.
Read-a-Thons are more than just a fundraising opportunity for the school. They encourage students to get lost in a good book, where they’re free to explore their dreams and learn from the characters they read about.
Read-a-Thons give children in schools a purpose to read, combined with freedom to choose what they read, on their own terms, free from assessment or evaluation. Children who have participate in Readathon:
- Enjoy reading more and develop a greater self confidence in their reading abilities.
- Are more likely to read something in their free time daily. This leads to increased vocabulary and comprehension as well as improved writing ability.
- Read a wider variety of materials, such as poems, non-fiction, fiction, lyrics, magazines and websites.
- Have more positive attitudes towards reading, for example they are more likely to agree that reading is cool; more likely to agree that they carry on reading even when they find it difficult; and more likely to agree that there are lots of things they want to read.
- Are more likely to use the school library.
We ask that children and families continue to support our P&F organised Read-a-Thon this year! It is great to know that the two class who raise the most amount of money will receive a visit from illustrators Gwynneth Jones or Lillian Webb. How exciting! So children, keep busy gathering sponsors and logging your reading and illustrations because we only have until the 19th June. Please visit the link below to continue your fabulous fundraising efforts!
Seven Steps for Writing Success
In writing lessons across the school, students and teachers have definitely enjoyed focusing on writing Sizzling Starters. In their learning students have identified critical concepts required to create dynamic and engaging story starts that immediately engage the reader. Students have been given short situational prompts with only 60 seconds to write. They have been instructed to begin their writing right where the action is.
Below are some wonderful examples of Sizzling Starters from children in Year 4 Gold.
That smells amazing! Crack. Mhmm. YUM! This chocolate biscuit tastes amazing. I was so tempted to get them early out of the oven, but that would have spoilt them. Ding Dong. “Who is it?” Oh no, it’s my sister Ali and all her friends. Now I have to share.
That smells amazing! I was running like lightening towards a delicious scrumptious smell. I was following the note I found on my door when I woke, ‘FOLLOW THE SMELL’. Now I’m here running towards it. Wait, what’s that?
That smells amazing! I ran down the stairs and pushed my older brother out of the way. I could smell something amazing! I ran into the kitchen and a double-decker ice cream sundae with juicy red cherries and finely chopped bananas was sitting on the kitchen table. It was like heaven! I didn’t want my brother to notice, so I ate almost all of it! Don’t blow my cover, so SHHH!
In Week 5, excited Year 6 students attended an excursion to Canberra. This was a great opportunity for them to consolidate their learning in this semester’s History unit: Australia as a Nation. The children bravely endured very cold early mornings and evenings. It was a pleasure to watch new friendships formed and others strengthened. Below is a recount of the excursion by Jack Webber and Molly Boyle.
Last week Year 6 had the privilege of going to Canberra. We had to be at school for a 6:30 am bus trip. After a 6-hour trip, we finally arrived at Canberra. We got off the bus and had lunch in the beautiful Rose Gardens of Old Parliament House. We then split into class groups and went to explore the Australian Museum of Democracy and the Australian Electoral Commission. At the Australian Museum of Democracy, we could sit in the seats where senators once sat. Meanwhile, in the AEC we held our own vote, so we knew what to do when we're allowed to vote. After dinner we then went the AIS where we had a tour of the sporting areas and played in Sportex. The next day we woke up ready for a day of fun. After breakfast we rushed off to the Royal Australian Mint where, we learned how coins were made and some kids pressed coins of their own. We all thought it was so cool. We then got to have a tour around New Parliament House which was very cool because we got even got to run our own Parliament. We thought Parliament House was very exciting. We were all starving after, so we had lunch on top of Mount Ainslie. After we went to the Australian War Memorial, we learned a lot. We stayed for the Last Post Ceremony and placed a wreath. We went to our accommodation and had a good sleep ready for tomorrow - Jack Webber
After a good night’s rest, we were all excited for our last day of activities in Canberra! After quickly packing and cleaning our rooms, we boarded the bus, bound for Questacon. On arriving at Questacon, we shopped at the gift shop and then split into four groups to explore the interactive museum. My group went to the Drop Slide first. After this, we went to the ‘experimenting with light’ exhibit where we were able to make our own light puppets. The next exhibit we visited was the ‘natural earth’ exhibit and we learnt about earthquakes and lightning. The group continued through to the ‘Built or Born’ exhibit learning about technology and robots. We enjoyed the rest of the exhibits, and before we knew it, our time in Questacon was up.
At the conclusion of our activities, the groups met up on the grass field beside Questacon for us to enjoy our final lunch in Canberra! We had a quick run around on the grass before boarding the bus waving goodbye to Canberra! - Molly Boyle
In Week 5, students from our school attended an education tour of the national capital. Students were given the opportunity to participate in a variety of educational programs with a focus on Australia’s history, culture, heritage and democracy.
The Australian Government recognises the importance of all young Australians being able to visit the national capital as part of their Civics and Citizenship education. To assist families and schools in meeting the cost of the excursion the Australian Government is contributing funding of $20.00 per student under the Parliament and Civics Education Rebate program towards those costs. The rebate is paid directly to the school upon completion of the excursion.
Please refer to the PDF below regarding 2019 ICAS. Online payment will close on 31st July and NO late entries can be accepted
Come Spirit Come, fall afresh on us. Just as you gave birth to our Church on that first Pentecost, come now and let the fire of your love enflame our hearts. May we your people, your living body, who worship here in praise and thanksgiving on this Pentecost Feast, be renewed and empowered by your Spirit. We make this prayer in your name. Amen
Pentecost Sunday is a commemoration and celebration of the receiving of the Holy Spirit by the early church. On the day of Pentecost, just as promised, the sound of a violent wind filled the house and tongues of fire came to rest on each of the Apostle’s head and all were filled with the Holy Spirit. They were given the power of communication, which Peter used to begin the ministry for which Jesus had prepared him. After the coming of the Holy Spirit, the disciples did not stay in the room basking in God’s glory but burst out to tell the world. This was the beginning of the church as we know it.
On Tuesday, 11th June please join us as we gather as a school community at 8:50am under the COLA at morning assembly, to celebrate the Feast of Pentecost, the birthday of the Church!
This is an opportunity to reflect on the gifts of the Holy Spirit, how they can help us live more faith-filled lives and be examples of Jesus’ love and peace to others. Students from Year 4 will lead the liturgy.
Sacrament of Confirmation
Many children from our St Joseph’s community and the wider Newcastle Parish received the Sacrament of Confirmation on Tuesday and Wednesday evening this week. Bishop Bill, Father Andrew and Father Peter celebrated the service at the Sacred Heart Cathedral. The 39 students participated beautifully and it was a joy to see them receive the Sacrament of Confirmation supported by their sponsors, families and school community. Please pray for these children as they continue on their journey of faith.
‘Come Holy Spirit fill the hearts of your faithful and kindle in them the fire of your love.’
Our Mini Vinnies Group and Student Council are focused on organising our 2019 Winter Appeal. The St Vincent De Paul Society has requested this year that they prefer donations of blankets, money and personal messages. Mini Vinnies and the Student Council will be hosting something new this year to encourage generous donations to those in need this winter.
A Mufti and Marshmallow Pyjama Day will be held on Tuesday 25th June, Week 9. The students may wear their pyjamas and will have the option to buy a marshmallow hot chocolate at Lunch. More information about this will be distributed in Week 7. All donations will go directly to the St Vincent De Paul 2019 Winter Appeal. Each class will have a basket in their room where donations may be placed. Thank you in advance for your kindness and generosity, people in need in our local community will be very grateful.
Term 2 Class Mass Dates
Each class joins with the parish community once a term in the celebration of Mass. These Masses are held of a Friday and begin at 10:15am in our St Joseph’s Church. Below is a list of dates when each class is attending in Term 2. Parents and grandparents are invited to join their children in prayer at this time.
|Friday 7th June||Year 3 & Year 4 attending Mass|
|Friday 14th June||Year 2 attending Mass|
|Friday 21st June||Year 1 attending Mass|
|Friday 28th June||Kindergarten attending Mass|
Palms Morning Tea
All families are invited to the Palms Australia fundraising morning tea to be held after Mass at St Joseph’s on Sunday 30th June. Many Year 4 students from St Joseph’s and Holy Family will be attending mass at St Joseph’s Church for their First Holy Communion. The morning tea in the parish center will be an opportunity for the parish to welcome the families after Mass, play a few games and chat together, and raise money for Palms Australia. Families are welcome to bring a plate to share.
Thank you to Cheree Flanagan for the organisation with this fundraiser.
Palms Australia is an international aid and development agency that sends skilled volunteers to share their skills with communities around the world. Palms Australia has placed volunteers with communities and organisations in Africa, Asia, the Pacific, South America and in Indigenous communities in Australia. Palms Australia supports community development by sending volunteers at the request of the receiving communities, to work alongside local people and receive an equivalent living wage.
Newcastle Inner City Catholic Community - Weekend Mass times
Sacred Heart Cathedral – Vigil Saturday 5:30pm, Sunday 9:30am and 5:00pm
St Joseph’s, The Junction – Sunday 9:00am
Immaculate Heart of Mary, Tighes Hill – Sunday 8:00am
St Mary’s, Newcastle – Sunday 7:30am
Due to this week’s wet weather, we have postponed the Athletics Carnival until Thursday 20th June.
Despite the change in the carnival dates, entries for the 200m and 800m will remain closed.
If you have volunteered to assist on Wednesday at the Carnival, please contact the office if you are no longer able to do so on June 20th. Those parents who remain available will be contacted closer to the 20th with further event information.
Thursday 20th June is the only availability at Fearnley Dawes Athletics Track prior to our Central Region Carnival on Tuesday 2nd July, therefore the event will proceed on this date, even if it is wet weather.
Our in school basketball sessions continue this week. Due to the postponement of our Athletics Carnival, Kinder – Year 3 Blue have been able to participate in their lessons this week. Due to the Stage 3 Dio Sounds excursion, Year 5 and 6 participated in combined classes during the morning session prior to leaving for their excursion.
The new Athletics Carnival date of Thursday 20th June means that in Week 8 all students will wear their sports uniform on both Wednesday 19th June, so that they can participate in sport sessions and Thursday 20th June so they can attend the athletics carnival. Students may wear a shirt and accessories in their house colour on the day of the carnival.
NSW PSSA Boys Football
Last week Oliver Cockle, Julian Dunn and Will Harvey attended the NSW PSSA Boys Football 3 day training camp, as part of the Polding team. Across the week, the boys trained and competed with other students from across NSW in the hope of being selected for representation in the NSW Boys Football Team.
We are so proud of the boys for their hard work and dedication to their sport, which saw them miss their Year 6 excursion to Canberra. All of the boys had a fantastic experience and learned a lot from their coaches and teammates.
We are thrilled to announce that Oliver Cockle has been selected as part of the NSW team. We congratulate Oliver and wish him all the very best for his upcoming events with the national team!
Polding Touch Trials
Congratulations to Daisy Breasley and Bronte Bowker, who attended the Polding Touch trials last Friday 31st May. Despite narrowly missing out on selection in the Polding team, the girls had a great time and learnt a lot from their experience. They represented themselves and St Joseph’s with great pride. Well done Daisy and Bronte!
Due to this week’s poor weather conditions, the Diocesan Rugby has been postponed until next Wednesday 12th June. We wish Darcy Mitchell, Max Mitchell, Ben Moran and Arun Griffiths all the best with this trial.
On Thursday 23rd May, Miss Carney took two senior and two junior teams made up of boys from Years 3, 4, 5 and 6 to represent St Joseph’s in the Newcastle Futsal Tournament. The tournament was held at Genesis Newcastle and saw the St Joseph’s teams compete against other schools from all across the Newcastle Region. All the boys had a lot of fun and some great successes on the day!
Both the 10 Years B team and the 12 Years B team, placed 3rd overall in their divisions.
The 12 Years A team made it through to the semi-finals, loosing narrowly in a penalty shoot out.
While the 10 Years A team was victorious taking out the Final of the event.
Both the 10 Years A team and the 12 Years A team will now progress to the State Championships which will be held on Tuesday 18th June at Maitland Basketball Stadium.
We would like to thank all of the parents who volunteered to support the boys with this event. Your assistance and guidance is truly valued. Thank you.
Important Representative Athletics Information
The following information is for any talented Athletics participants here at St Joseph’s who would usually qualify for Polding Athletics and beyond. Please take the time to read this information carefully:
For your understanding- We will still have Diocesan Athletics 7th August, Polding Athletics 18th October and NSWPSSA State Athletics Championships on the 6th & 7th November.
Students qualify for this pathway via our normal process. However they will NOT progress to School Sport Australia from this.
As this year’s School Sport Australia Athletics Championships are being held in Darwin and with the heat at the end of the year, the SSA event is moved earlier than our NSWPSSA.
Therefore to qualify for SSA athletes must be selected in a PSSA Athletics Representative Team on Thursday 8th August at Homebush. This is independent of our school pathway and our NSWPSSA event on 6th/7th November. Students will need to apply online. It has nothing to do with schools.
Please see attached the NSWPSSA Athletics Selection Trial Information to be held on Thursday 8 August, Sydney Olympic Park Athletics Centre, Homebush.
Below is the link to the NSWPSSA website which has the forms required to submit applications
Diocesan Rugby Trials: Wednesday 12th June
NSWCPS/Polding X Country: Friday 14th June
Futsal State Championship: Tuesday 18th June
School Athletics Carnival: Thursday 20th June
Polding Softball Trials: Friday 21st June
Central Region Athletics Carnival: Tuesday 2nd July
Congratulations to the following children who have recently completed their Premier’s Reading Challenge. Lucas Kelly, Hannah Webber, Emma Shrewsbury, Rajbir Gujal, Marija Tutman and Jack Webber. Great work everyone.
Students can use same reading for PRC as their school Read-a-thon.
The library is open every morning for extra borrowing.
The children now have access to an online borrowing system called Sora. Students can download the app from Google Play or the App Store
- The collection we are part of is the ACEN Member Collection. You will need to select this when it asks for your school.
- Student’s school email address: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Student’s password to their school account
If you have any enquiries, please pop into the library and see me. I’m sure we can sort it out.
On Thursday 24th May some members of our Senior Choir went on an excursion to the Apple Store at Charlestown Square. During our two hour workshop an Apple Specialist led our choir members through a program called ‘Garageband’ to help us as begin composing our own songs using different sounds. In pairs we were able to create our own pieces of music using loops and different instruments such as; drums, piano, guitar, woodwind, strings and of course our voices. At the end of our workshop some pairs were able to share their own pieces in front of everyone.
We would like to say a big thank you to our parents for helping transport us to and from the Apple Store along with Ms McGinlay, Mrs McMillian and Mr Michael Nolan for providing a great opportunity.
By Charisse Watters-Cowan and Myfanwy McMahon
A reminder that your school fees are now due and payable.
Entertainment books are now available to purchase online
Uniform Price List
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