Over the past few years the College has been part of the NSW Literacy and Numeracy Action Plan (LNAP).
LNAP is a NSW Government funded program aimed at building the capacity and expertise of teachers as they work with students in the early years of schooling. LNAP has increased our resources and has provided significant professional development for teachers.
Our teachers have intentionally changed their style of teaching to reflect practices that get results. Many of you know that our students are experiencing improvements in literacy and numeracy. These improved results are a direct outcome of our changed practice. As educators, we get excited when we see our students improve, and when they can identify their improvements.
Earlier this week Mrs Armstrong and I attended a meeting that secured another grant from the NSW Government that will help us make further improvements to our literacy and numeracy programs in the primary school. This funding, and the partnerships that support it, will assist us in embedding the improvements we have made. This is good news and we greatly appreciate the determination and commitment of the NSW Government in this area.
As a staff we are excited about the opportunity to further improve our teaching and, as a result, see improvements in student learning.
Our recent Remembrance Day service was a reflective time to gather together as a school community and show our respect to others for the sacrifices they have made for us. We enjoyed the input of Scott Bingham, Warrant Class Two from the Lone Pine Barracks who delivered the Commemorative Address.
A key element of the service is the high level of student involvement. I enjoyed listening to our students as they spoke, read or played the trumpet. They led us in the service so well.
Thank you to the parents and family who attending the event. I am looking forward to our College joining the wider Singleton community for ANZAC day in 2017.
The end of year Presentation Day is one of the key events for the whole year. It is wonderful for all of us who partner in the education of children to join together to reflect, acknowledge and celebrate. A reminder that the service is on Wednesday 7th December at 9am. We plan for the service to finish by 10:15am and parents and guests are invited to join with staff in the coffee shop afterwards. You may sign your child out at the end of the service if you wish. Supervision will be provided for students if you are unable to do this.
Our memory verse is so practical
I have had a number of conversations lately with students and new parents to the College where I have brought up our memory verse. It is so relevant to children as they learn how to relate to themselves and to others. The verse is a great reminder to all of us. We must continue to learn to be the master of what comes out of our mouths. Our words have such power - power to build up and power to tear down. Let's all choose to be part of a community that builds each other up.
Bridging the Generations
Our students participated again this year in Singleton Library’s ‘Bridging the Generations’ program. After a morning tea that was provided by the College and graciously served by Maddison Charnock and Vanessa Garland, our students entertained their new ‘old’ friends.
It is always very humbling to watch our students interact with senior citizens so respectfully. Students in Years 4, 5 and 6 sang, danced and shared some poems, while Brittany Armstrong, Cooper Toshack and Jesse Allinson performed musical items. They captivated their appreciative audience!
A highlight of this event was when our students interviewed an elderly person to learn about what life was like in the past. They were surprised to discover that so many of the things that we just take for granted did not even exist when these people were young.
We greatly value our partnership with the Library and are grateful to Mrs Joan Ingram for blessing us with this opportunity each year.
We are very proud of our students!
World Teachers’ Day
Last Friday was World Teachers’ Day . All around the globe, it is a day to celebrate and acknowledge the work that teachers do to make a difference in the lives of young people. Here at ACC we believe that teaching is a calling. We strive for excellence because we serve a mighty God who wants all his children to ‘have life and life in abundance’ (John 10:10).
Thank you for entrusting your children to our care. We take our responsibility very seriously and feel privileged to be part of your child’s journey.
iPad Apps that make learning fun
Whilst we often hear about the negatives of children using technology, there are also many educational apps that enhance student learning. The following 3 free applications for iPad are worth checking out.
Our Story Reading, even in the digital age, is probably one of the most important skills that children acquire. It can be an important source of pleasure, which also develops vital language and social skills. It is fundamental to most school activities. It can also open up new worlds and give access to the wealth of human knowledge. This app that has been developed by child psychologists and other specialists at The Open University enables young children to take part in fun games which can help develop interests and skills that will be relevant to them when they start to read.
Spelling City is a fun way to learn spelling and vocabulary words by playing engaging games using any word list.
Toontastic is a storytelling and creative learning tool that enables children to draw, animate, and share their own cartoons through simple and fun imaginative play! Making cartoons with Toontastic is as easy as putting on a puppet show - simply press the record button, move your characters onscreen, and tell your story. Toontastic records your animation and voice as a cartoon video.
Literacy Tip for Week 7
Share interesting articles with your child from magazines, the internet or newspapers. This is not only a great way to connect with your child, but it also gets them reading and improves their general knowledge.
Students are currently learning their new memory verse. As one student commented, this verse links beautifully with our last memory verse.
It’s true that the best writers are also avid readers. Owen Evans (Year 6) recently enjoyed a novel set in World War I so much that he was inspired to compose his own war story, but in a different historical context. Good job, Owen!
The Ambush (Part 1)Here I am crouching in a dirt and stone bunker with bullets darting overhead; occasionally someone gets hit. I’m re-loading my M16 while orders get yelled at us at the top of officer’s lungs. I stand up and aim at one of the ISIS troops and bang!
“Great shot!” the man next to me exclaims. The man next to me is actually Jacko, a mate of mine from Brisbane, Queensland. But I’ve got more things to worry about … such as this ambush.
It all started when squadron 39 had been ordered to take 500 metres of ISIS territory, and that’s what we did, but we weren’t told to do anything else, so we were trapped in a massive ambush. I didn't’ mention that I know another bloke here. His name’s Dylan and he’s from Darwin, Northern Territory. Anyway, we’re trying to figure out a way to escape while also surviving. It’s hard, tough and brutal, and we need support, but our radio is down so we can’t get any support at the moment. People are wounded everywhere, some even dead - the screaming, yelling and crying of agony is hard to stand.
There are a couple of people trying to figure out how to escape, while other men do it tough like me and and try to kill ISIS too. There’s only three things going through my mind at this point:
I do it over and over again. Some shots are direct hits while others completely miss. There are some people who want to surrender and others who want to fight their hearts out. While men are dropping like flies, amazingly our radio has come back on and we can now reach base. But when our luck is getting better, it all goes wrong. There are now ISIS terrorists pointing guns at our heads.
Now we are prisoners of war; just what had to happen. I think about two massive decisions: stay prisoner and get slaughtered or try to run into the trees on my right.
I think hard for a second, then go for it. I start running, sprinting as fast as my legs can carry me and once I am back in the trees, I am shot in the left shoulder. I fall over in the process and hide. I watch ISIS terrorists walk past with AK-47s, M16 and sniper rifles plus a lot more. I wait for about two hours, then end up falling asleep…
To be continued in the next newsletter.
THANKS TO OUR PARENTS
We all greatly appreciate our wonderful parents who support us in so many different ways … including our delicious Wednesday muffin treats! Yum!
PE Report from Mr Vincze
It’s been encouraging to see so many dancers swinging their hips to the Cha Cha this term.
Our Physical Education program for every student at Australian Christian College has seen the opportunity to be involved in quite a few choreographed hits. We’ve had the Nutbush, the Macarena, the famous Russian folk dance, the ‘Troika’ and the soon-to-be-seen, paired, freestyle Interpretive Dance routines from Stage 4 and 5. The fun GoNoodle website has also been super cool for the Primary girls and boys, moving to some of the biggest pop hits in recent years.
Our big fields along Kelso Street have been getting lots of use with Softball being our programed sport for High School on Fridays. Classy home runs, hits and the awkward under-arm pitch claiming some solid practice.
We’ve had the intensive swimming program happening at the Singleton Gym & Swim for Primary, not to mention the possibly even more intensive boot camp (High Intensity Training) morning routine for the last two Wednesday mornings. Gee, I love that sound-desk music!
Finally, the handball matches in front of the Library every single recess and lunch have had a massive following, and the finals are up and coming in Week Six, so stay tuned.
Stay fit and creative!
Week five was all about swimming and water safety as we launch into summer. Living in Australia and being a beach culture society means that water safety and learning to swim are very important. I am delighted to say we had 100% attendance to swim school.
Last week a note was sent home about our end of year excursion. Students will be traveling to the Majestic Cinema to watch the movie Trolls on Tuesday 6th December. This excursion to the movies is a great way to celebrate the completion of a successful year. Please return permission notes with payment to the office at your earliest convenience. As we expect all students and teachers to attend, there will not be any supervision at school during this excursion.
This week is PAT testing week. This will take place in the 5/6 room, Monday through to Wednesday. If any students are absent for tests, they will have an opportunity later in the week to complete them. Our students are getting quite familiar with using the computers to complete these tests. Even had a year four student comment that he liked doing the tests online. Hopefully this motivation will assist with a greater effort and in turn good results. As always, it's about each student just trying their best.
On the 26th of October, Stage 3 and Stage 5 went on a joint excursion to Sydney to visit the Observatory and Planetarium . After leaving school at 7:30 am, we all drove over the Sydney Harbour Bridge and settled for recess on top of Observatory Hill which overlooked the Harbour. Our tour through the Observatory started with introductions and a walk through the facility including “The west dome” with our guide, Nathan; after which, we took a journey through the solar system and beyond by watching a 3D space movie and we watched day turn into a clear starlit night in the Planetarium.
Mrs Amanda Hartmann
Intensive Swimming Program
Our intensive swimming program allowed our K-6 primary students to learn, practise and really grasp the foundations of water safety, correct stroke technique and preparedness in water-skills-for-life. This was an action-packed program lasting the full week with every afternoon in Week 5 held at the Singleton Gym & Swim indoor pool. Water safety and swimming skills are an essential part of life in Australia, and with Summer approaching, it was definitely a fun and educational experience for all.
A big thank-you to Singleton Gym & Swim for providing professional instructors in their newly renovated complex. Please check out some of our snapshots of the kids learning and having fun in the water.
Year 5/6 Poetry
This term in Stage 3 English we have been focusing on reading, analysing and writing poetry. Students have read and analysed three famous poems with the common theme of “journeys”. Students have built on their interpretation of these poems and then used this to model their own personification poem.
(by Tyrone Salanoa)Shouting at some raging monkeys
I get really mad
Start giving bananas but nothing seems to happen
I shout and shout but nothing works
Monkeys punching just for fun outside a quiet jungle
But for some reason,
I didn’t realize that they were just playing all this time.
(by Felicia Wu)Opening my eyes
I see fluffy white snow fall
From the bright blue sky
I jump into the snow
Hoping it was soft
I twirl around
The wind dancing across my face
A Golf Career
(By Owen Evans)My polished callaway driver
In my Titleist golf bag
Begging for a chance to provide.
The yellow shimmering golf ball,
Hoping to reach the bottom of the cup.
Thinking of my name printed in gold
On the trophy we all want.
CLICK HERE to download the 'What Makes Frequent Readers' infographic.
Before school fun!
Book Club Report
In 2016, the Australian Kids and Family Reading Report was published by YouGov. This report details the reading habits of Australian families.
This report affirms all that we already know about the benefits of reading but I wanted to highlight 2 points. Firstly, it points out that if a child chooses a book then they are more likely going to read it and secondly, even though we are increasingly a digital society, the majority of children still prefer to read a physical book.
This year at ACC Singleton, we ran 7 of the scholastic book club catalogues and hosted a book fair. We have raised in excess of $1,100 for educational materials for the school. I would like to extend my heartfelt thanks to everyone who has supported the book club this year.
We will be back and hopefully bigger and better in 2017!
(THANK YOU, Mrs Fredericks, for the many hours you spend coordinating our Scholastic Book Club. We love that you love to share your love of reading. Thank you!)
Welcome to Week 7
High school students have been busily completing the last of their major assessment tasks and knuckling down to some serious revision. There’s a time for work and a time for play. It’s great to see most students finding the right balance.
HIGH SCHOOL EXAMINATIONS
It is always rewarding to see how well our students apply themselves to examinations. Although exams can be stressful for some children and prove quite a challenge for others, they are also a great reward and acknowledgement for those who work hard to achieve their best.
You may have heard the adage ‘If it doesn’t challenge you, it doesn’t change you.’ Facing challenges helps us to know ourselves better and can also have many positive effects on our life. For students, preparing for exams, completing homework tasks and working hard on Assessment Tasks provide the opportunity for young people to demonstrate independence and resilience. It is one area in which they can take control and challenge their minds.
We encourage our students to challenge themselves to achieve their very best by striving for accuracy, questioning and solving problems, persisting even when the work is difficult, applying past knowledge to new situations, gathering data, composing and creating, thinking about thinking and being open to continuous learning. We want our students to be intellectually courageous – to take responsible risks with their learning and stretch their minds. Challenging oneself is a vital element of learning.
If children don’t try, then they will never know what they are capable of. Overcoming challenges can be empowering. In our contemporary world, which seems to move and change more rapidly each year, challenging oneself is an important way to prepare for life’s inevitable and unexpected trials.
We encourage you to challenge your children to challenge themselves - to move beyond comfortable routines and doing the bare minimum, and step into their full capabilities and potential by challenging themselves.
Our handball competition is so fierce that we can’t even keep Mr Shields off the court. His sidestepping skills are pretty good, too.
Whilst some hone their handball skills on the courts during lunch breaks, others are cha-cha-char-ing in the library.
We love these candid camera shots of some of our Year 10 students getting in a bit of extra lunchtime dance practice in preparation for their Dance Assessment.
We have some extraordinarily talented students.
Vanessa has a passion for Art.
Speaking of talent … Jesse and Cooper have been practising their beatbox skills.
Mr Perry … working hard
or hardly working?
See … learning is fun!
We’re sure we have the fittest teenagers in Singleton! Thanks, Mr Vincze.
Stage 4 Dance Assessment for PDHPE.
Busy in the Tech Room
TOUGH LOVE - It really does work
I recently came across an article about the impact of different parenting styles on children, and found some gems that are worth sharing.
Drug and Alcohol Research and Training Australia (DARTA) outline the types of parenting that are most effective in preventing, or at the very least delaying, adolescent alcohol and drug use and other risky behaviours. Their research found that the two main protective factors are:
DARTA identified four types of parenting styles:
authoritarian (strictness but no warmth)
authoritative (strictness and warmth)
indulgent (warmth but not strictness)
neglectful (neither warmth nor strictness)
The style of parenting that is most effective is the authoritative parenting style, where parents set simple and clear rules for their children about what is expected of them and what will not be tolerated from an early age. Rules and boundaries are set, and consequences are bound in unconditional love. This approach, provided in an environment where the children feel loved and cared about has measurably positive effects on the child. This is sometimes referred to as ‘tough love’, and the fact is that tough love is much more likely to keep children safe.
The opposite – indulgent parenting – is more likely to result in children who make poor decisions and take dangerous risks. Indulgent parents are those who try to avoid conflict and rarely follow through with handing out consequences. They are also more likely to use the line ‘but I trust my child’. More information for parents can be accessed HERE
Morning Routine for the Body
On Tuesday mornings our high school students begin their day with a healthy burst of activity. Mr Vincze seems to have an endless supply of fun, energetic activities and games.
The Board of Studies, Teaching and Educational Standards (BOSTES) publishes a glossary of Key Words that teachers across all KLAs are familiar with and use consistently. Here are the ‘A’ words:
Account for: state reasons for, report on. Give an account of: narrate a series of events or transactions
Identify components and the relationship between them; draw out and relate implications
Use, utilise, employ in a particular situation
Make a judgement about the value of
Make a judgement of value, quality, outcomes, results or size
BYO Devices Reminder
Thank you for encouraging your child to bring their fully charged device to school each day.
Term 4: 11th October - 7th December (9 week term)
Year 10 Formal: Thursday 1st December
Presentation Day: 7th December at 9am