Amphibians Class

 

Amphibian News Letter T4 2017dinasaur

 Hi Amphibians!

 Welcome back, we hope you all had a good holiday.

 Studies

This term we are studying the  Eras: Precambrian, Palaeozoic, Mesozoic and Cenozoic as part of Montessori’s “Coming of Life” story.

 The students will create a Dinosaur Display or Diorama and make a project to go with it. This is done in class. Elizabeth has a lot of work planned and we will also be using soft brushes to uncover REAL fossils within limestone from the Ordovician (fish) period.

 New student

We have a new student! Welcome to the Amphibian Classroom Naijal. He is a junior.

 Thank you!

Thank you, parents and students for looking after the chickens. Your support is much appreciated.

Also thanks to Roy’s family and Grandfather, Henry Peel and Elle’s mum Krystle Hutchinson for helping with last term’s play by making props.

 Events

  • Wednesday 18th Oct. Visit from RSL care residents to CMS

  • Friday 27th Oct. Grandparent’s Day/ Day for Daniel

  • Friday 27th Oct. Sunshine Concert

  • Friday 10th Nov. Remembrance Day Assembly 10:30

  • Friday 17th Nov. Senior Graduation Dinner

  • Friday 24th Nov. Carols By Candlelight 5:30

  • Thursday 30th Nov. Senior Graduation Assembly 1pm

  • Thursday 30th Nov. School Disco

 Goals

This term the Amphibians are working on individual learning goals – either personal or academic e.g. (like number facts, punctuation, spelling). But the whole class is focusing on learning our times tables. So please can you remind them to practise at home. This is really important to just get this learned.

Mental Maths

The Middles and Seniors have MM (Mental Maths) homework that is due on Tuesdays each week. Please ensure that you are handing in your MM each week.

Your spelling list and book review criteria sheet is on the back

 

             


         

 

C3A classroom

Amphibian News T2 2017

Dear Parents,

THANK YOU so much to the families who helped us move the classrooms over the holidays. Together, we moved four classrooms and it was a massive job. CMS provided coffees and lunch to keep us smiling. Thankyou! Here’s a photo of before we started unpacking. Our room was filled with both 3A & 3B items. And a huge thankyou to Leah & Dezlee for helping to unpack with me during our holidays.

We invite you to come and have a look at our new building. Upstairs has 4 classrooms. Currently C3A and C3B have moved in, and soon, the C2 Seahorses class will join us and Rosie will enjoy her own Italian room. We really love the building and I am impressed with the large workspaces for the children to work in; the general layout; the gentle air-flow; good natural lighting plus the undercover area downstairs. CMS administration and the Architect have done a fantastic job with creating such a functional building.

Our Work

As always, it’s a very busy term for the Amphibian’s Class! The children will mainly focus on two areas. The children will be writing, creating and illustrating their own Aboriginal Dreamtime Creation Story and they’ll also be learning about Geography and mapping. Both these topics follow on from last term’s First Great Story. The Geography component examines the formation of Earth and the Dreamtime Creation story examines and then acknowledges that different cultures and religions have different ideas about creation and meanings. Students will study maps; globes; lines of latitude and longitude; time zones; climates; land and water forms and names of countries and cities. Student will further learn cartographic conventions including border, scale, legend, title and north point.

Events & Excursions:

  • Rail Safety 19th April
  • Visit to St Columban’s College 21st April
  • Sports Day 28th April
  • Naplan – 9th to 11th May
  • RSL care for Seniors – most weeks.
  • Tullawong High School visiting CMS – 22nd May
  • C3A Excursion to the Planetarium and Botanical Gardens, Brisbane (date to be advised).
  • Cycle two transition students are coming in weeks 5 to 8
  • C3A & B QUT excursion 6th June.
  • Leadership lessons fortnightly with Yvonne.
  • Sunlight concert 16th June.

Home Work – Book review and spelling list is attached

Reminder – please name all lunch boxes, drink bottles and clothing.

How can you support your child at home?

¯  Help your child with managing their time with their book review.

¯  Reading – get your child to read to you. No amount is ever enough!

¯  Handwriting – write letters, lists, journals etc.

¯  Spelling – practise difficult words. Thrass it out, clap to the syllables. Talk to your child about words, discuss etymology, discuss compound words.

¯  Create learning opportunities out of anything – quantities when cooking, comparing weights – including litres, kilos, distance – what does a kilometre look like? How fast am I travelling (If I’m driving at 100km, how long will it take to drive 50km?)

¯  Times tables – mastery of 100 x & ÷ is under 5 minutes.

¯  Addition – 69 + 11

¯  Subtraction 70 - 11

Thankyou so much for your support. Always please see me straight after school for any urgent matters. I try to always be available.

Have a wonderful term.

Elizabeth & Leah


 

Amphibian News T1 2017  

               frog cycle 2

Welcome back!!! As always, we have a new vibrant group of children who are settling in well. So, a huge welcome to our new students – Sophie, Poppy, Roy, Edith, Mohammed, Nina, Luka and Cooper and Elyssa. Plus, a warm welcome to our ‘on-trial’ students Charlize, Jamaica & Ella.

I would also like to warmly welcome Leah to our class. Leah has been at CMS for six years and has previously worked in cycle two as an assistant and teacher. Leah requested to come to cycle three, wanting a new challenge, so it is great to have her on board. Leah and Teresa have swapped roles and we will miss Teresa – although she’s not too far away in cycle two.

Leah and I really look forward to getting to know your beautiful children and you, their parents. Juniors usually take a while to settle in – making new friendships and adjusting to a heavier workload. Middles enjoy knowing the ropes and Seniors love the opportunity to become even more responsible and lead. For these reasons, we have camp early in the year.

Thank you so much for your heart-warming Christmas presents and cards. And also a HUGE thank-you to the parents who, in lieu of Christmas presents, gave us classroom tea towels and books. Thank you so much!

A big thank you to those families that helped with caring for our animals during the holidays, we truly appreciate your community support.

Camp: Our class will be attending Earthkeeper’s camp at Rathdowney from the 15th to 17th March. Rathdowney is near the border of Qld/NSW. I have previously attended this camp and it was a magical experience. Earthkeeper’s is an Earth education program designed to teach four basic ecological concepts (the flow of energy, the cycling of materials, the inter-relating of life, and the changing of forms), to let your child experience the wonders of the natural world and to help everyone realise that each of us has an effect on the health of the planet because of the ways we use or misuse and waste energy and materials. Further information, a consent form and packing list will be sent out from the office soon.

Labelling: Please please ask your child to label all of their belongings. Frequently hats, socks, shoes, lunchboxes and drink containers are left lying about. Your children are very ‘giving’ with their lunch containers and if they are in doubt about their ownership, they will often say that the item might not be theirs. So frequently, we have many unclaimed lunch boxes and small containers. Please name everything! Thanks!

Homework:

Book reviews: Each term, your child is required to read a novel and review it. Please would you assist your child in finding a suitable book (preferably non-fiction). We always start off in term one with a ‘standard’ book review and become more creative as the year progresses. Your child will be expected to complete their review and present it to the class on Monday 13th and Tuesday 14th March (week 8) – meaning it is due BEFORE camp. Due to camp dates, it would be extremely helpful if this work was completed and presented prior to camp. The book review task sheet is attached.

Spelling: I have also included your child’s spelling list. I encourage you to discuss spelling and word meanings. This list is given for at-home support as it raises confidence in class when your child already knows their words.

Mental maths: Mental maths is due each Tuesday – but never in the first or last week of term. Our new Juniors are not required to do mental maths homework.

Our work: Space!

This term we will begin with the three year cycle again with Maria Montessori’s First Great Story, ‘The God with no hands.’ It is based on the scientific theory of the Big Bang. We will also examine the Christian story and an Aboriginal story – The Rainbow serpent and discuss differing beliefs. From there we will study Stars and lifecycles, our Earth – core / mantle / crust, Solstice / Equinox

Earth’s tilt – sunlight at the poles / Seasons / Temperature variations over Earth, The Moon, Gravity on Earth and other planets, plus trips to moon and space ships / Neil Armstrong / Astronauts. The children will be able to follow their own path of enquiry and make a 3D object to hang from our in-class Milky Way!

To support this, we have booked a night out at Mapleton Observatory on Monday 6th March. This two our event will start around 6.30/7pm, so please book it in your calendar. We ask that parents carpool to transport their children to this event. The Mapleton Observatory has a huge Celestron automated telescope in a rotating dome observatory plus extra telescopes outside to show the children different stars and constellations. It is an amazing experience and we understand it may be difficult to transport, but a very valuable experience for your child which will support their space work. A consent form will go out soon with the exact time.

3A Café – We are excited to invite you to our annual 3A Café event which will be held on Wednesday 22nd March. Our annual 3A Café event is a time where your child will present their space work and offer a class-made afternoon tea. The children will make you a hand-made invitation later on in the term, but please book this date. Time will be advised.

Dance Fever

Each year, our cycle three’s participate in dancing lessons. The Dance Fever crew usually teach the Waltz, Hiphop, The Jive and The Tango. The children really enjoyed their first lesson and Dance Fever is part of our Arts curriculum. Dance Fever is a wonderful opportunity and we finish the term with our own special Dance Fever event usually held at St Columban’s College. Parents are included in this event and your child will have an opportunity to dance with you and show you their moves! It will be held on 27th March (usually around 6pm).

Sunscreen – With this incredible heat at the moment, please send your child in with sunscreen for them to use at lunch time.

How can we stay in touch?

Please feel free to contact me by sending a note or using the communication folder outside the classroom. From there we can make an appointment. I am usually available Monday and Tuesday afternoons after school. I greatly appreciate staying in touch with you. It is too difficult to catch me in the mornings as I am planning for the day. I especially look forward to meeting all new junior parents for 1:1 appointments in the next few weeks, just to check-in and see how they’re progressing.            

Finally….

Thanks parents, for your helpfulness and support. We are all looking forward to a fantastic, wonderful and amazing 2017 for our growing Amphibian family.

Elizabeth & Leah J   frog
    


 

Anyone for a journey into the Decanomial?

Here's a photo of Max and Ivan after Max had completed the paper Decanomial. Max was keen to learn this and teach it to Ivan and the other Junior students. Max did a wonderful job as he has deep understanding of the Decanomial beads.

decanomial

 


 

And then there was the World

                                             world economy

Welcome back to term 4!

A huge welcome to Demitri Demitriou who has recently joined our Amphibian’s class as a junior- Welcome!

We will finish “The Coming of Man,” work with the focus this term on learning about world resources – natural and renewable. The aim of this unit comes under technology as we will be looking at how people in technological occupations need to address competing considerations, including sustainability and environments for current and future use. We will examine opportunity cost, types of industries: Primary Industries, Secondary Industries, Tertiary Industries, Quaternary Industries and The Quinary Sector. We will further discuss the exploitation of the Earth – the benefits to the people and long term effects of exploiting non-renewable resources. The children will then come to an understanding of how an economy needs the natural resources for industry – exporting and consuming and how this can lead to detrimental effects on our Earth.

The children will then use the 56 country cards I’ve created that give information on population, life expectancy, natural resources, area, agriculture, exports, environmental issues and natural hazards. They will choose how the mining and selling of natural resources causes or doesn’t cause environmental issues.

An example that will be discussed is the exporting of Coal, Australia’s largest export, and how the Great Barrier Reef is being affected by a large shipping port being created at Gladstone.

I have also prepared a Senior Leadership preparation for High school program, where our Seniors will have the opportunity to study all of the following and Middles and Juniors will have the opportunity to do part of the following:

  • How to create a document in MS Word.
  • How to save documents and file documents properly on a computer.
  • How to plan and then write a research project
  • How to reference using APA.
  • How to study for an exam – to independently create a list of items that might be on a test and then to revise these items without stress and mental blockages.
  • How to make a term planner to manage time.
  • How to keep up to date with lessons – and to learn how to create own homework.
  • How to complete a simple science experiment.

Work Experience

Our seniors have now finished their community work with RSL Care and this term they will complete their work experience. They will begin the term with creating their resumes, cover letters and answering selection criteria in preparation for their jobs.

Our Play

Didn’t we do an awesome job! Thanks so much to the students who taught dances, sang solo, organised each other to make and paint the props, wrote in lines etc. It was SUCH a team effort from all the children. I was also truly honoured at how parents of younger children came and thanked us for the learning experience they gained from our play. Apparently some families have even gone and bought “The Lorax” book for their home library. Lovely!

Water Bottles and Hats

It’s getting hotter… please ensure that your child brings their water bottle and hat each day.

Internet Safety

In class, we often discuss internet safety and how at times inappropriate content may come up in google searches or children may look up inappropriate content. I encourage the children to ‘care for themselves.’ This means that if they see something on the internet that is unsettling, to quickly switch it off because it might be upsetting. CMS has quite effective restrictions on the school computers and Teresa and I also keep an eye on it. I’m highlighting this issue as the internet is rampant with inappropriate content – and apparently it is possible to activate restrictions on home computers too. Please, I encourage you to talk with your child about internet safety and put those restrictions in place.

An Independent Learner – by Charlotte Banks

This term the Amphibian’s class are trying to become independent learners. In class, we brainstormed what an independent learner is. We think that an independent learner:

  • Teaches themselves and asks for extra work;
  • Is excited and satisfied over work that they do;
  • Is proud of themselves when they achieve something new;
  • When they don’t need to work they still do;
  • They always do more than they have to do;
  • They want to learn and they target things they don’t know and learn them.

These are some important qualities of an independent learner.

                                                              

Term 4 Dates to Remember

Mental maths for Middles and Seniors is due each Tuesday

Book review is due week 8

21St Oct – Art items due for Grandparent’s day.

28th Grandparent’s day.

Parent Conferences begin 14th November.

23th November Graduation dinner for seniors

1st December Graduation Assembly.  

 

Have a great term!

Elizabeth and Teresa

 


 

The study of small invertebrates

Gemma, Elle and Shae enjoyed sorting these seashells into groups of coral, bivalves and univalves. Shae said she was surprised at how tiny some limpids were. Elle loved how curly some shells were and Gemma helped with her smiles.

C3A


 

MATHS AND INNOVATION

Sari and Charlotte are enjoying the Decimal Checkerboard Felts. Here, they've laid out 38.558 x 3.37 on the board, but found their sum is too big, so they've transferred it to the moveable felts (felt mats made by staff). Both girls find multiplying decimals using the materials and also doing decimal multiplication abstractly to be easy! 

Decimal checkerboard

             

 


 

Amphibian News T3 2016

On Tuesday 23rd August, the Amphibians, Dolphins and the Sea Stars celebrated CMS's Writer's Festival by visiting each other's classrooms and reading aloud to each group. The children aged 5-12 loved sharing their stories and spending this creative time together.

IMG 4864

 


 

Dear Parents,    axylottal

Welcome to Term three! We have a very busy term and we look forward to all of the events ahead.

Welcome to Elle & Lilly, who join us as a junior and middle Amphibian. Both girls have come from other schools – welcome girls!

Our play

We are very excited about our play this term. We are doing “The Lorax.” Last year, the seniors decided that we wanted a Dr. Seuss play and earlier this year, they decided on The Lorax. Together we’ve been working out our script, the roles, stage sets and costumes. I am very excited about the enthusiasm plus team-work the children have put into our production so far.

With your permission, I would like to help you, help us, with some of the costumes. I can order certain items off Ebay so that they’re not only matching, but a lot cheaper. I usually don’t like costumes to be more than $10 - $15 and parents last year were very appreciative of how we ordered off Ebay and sewed in class. Please let me know (by writing a note) if you’re happy for me to go ahead like this again and try to source items as cheaply as possible for you. It will only be a few items and I can’t promise I will be able to do this for all of the students.    

Our work this term:

We will begin with ‘Form a Tribe.’ This work will lead towards government in preparation for our senior trip to Canberra. The children will form small groups and imagine being transported to an island or area where there are enough natural resources to live, but where no-one has lived before. The children will decide on their tribe’s name; describe how they’ll collect/grow food; decide on their shelter; decide on their culture; map the area (including landforms); decide on rules and laws; discover neighbours and form their own government. This will help the children to understand the process involved in new settlements and understanding the formation of governments. Our democratic system will be described and our Australian government explained. In this way, the children will gain a deep understanding of how the English settled in Australia and formed our wonderful nation today.

Canberra Trip

The seniors will be going to Canberra from the 1st to 5th of August for a Government excursion. I will be taking them with the help of Justine Maddern. All remaining students will go to Anne & Jai’s class for that week and supported by Teresa and Jody. Preparations are well underway and we are so excited about it!

Mental Maths

A large number of children are not handing in their mental maths. Please would you support your child to complete this work by each Tuesday. If your child doesn’t have their mental maths book with them, they can hand in ‘back-up’ plan work where they print appropriate work off the internet, or failing that, they can write out a page of maths of their choice. Mental Maths is expected to be handed in on the first or last week of every term.

Book review

Our book review is attached. The children are required to read their novel and tell their story in less than three minutes by recording their story using their expressive voice and sound effects. They will also be required to submit their written copy (script) of their work. Please support your child to record their oral work and help them to submit it by USB or email. I have shown them how to record and email on my iphone. More details of this book review is on the sheet attached. Additionally, their spelling list is attached.

Book Review – Story telling

art

Your task this term is to turn the novel you read into an oral story that you record.  Begin by choosing and reading a novel. After you’ve read it, practise re-telling the story to your parents or friends. You will have to tell the story from the eyes of one of the characters. This will be a little different to previous book reviews, as before you were explaining what the book was about. This time, you’re telling the story as though it happened to you.

You have a maximum time limit of three minutes. To tell the story in this time, you’ll have to shorten the story and miss out non-essential parts.

I suggest that you write down the story in such a way that you’re a story teller. This will turn into your script that you hand in. Make sure you include speaking parts so that you engage your audience. You can also use sound effects and background music to make it exciting to hear. Be sure to use appropriate tone and volume when you practise reading it. Develop a different voice for each of the main characters who "speak" in your story.  For example, if you were telling the story of "Little Red Riding Hood," Red Riding Hood would say in a squeaky high voice “Myyyy what BIGGG teeth you have!” And then when the wolf responds, you’d use a much deeper, rough voice “All the better to eat you with!” After you have practiced it many times, find the sound effects that suit and practise again before you record. You might need to get help from a family member to make the sounds (slamming the door, crackling cellophane). Then record!

There are several ways to record your story. You can use a phone, an MP3 player, an iPod, or any recording device that you have. You may bring it in on a USB stick or email it to our classroom email at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Hand in your finished version of your script (with a title page of course) and your recording on Monday 29th August – week 8. Please ensure that your work is handed in on time. So we can identify the recording, please use your name as the title of your recording.

Remember the steps we discussed in class:

ü  Read it

ü  Tell it

ü  Write it

ü  Record it

Record it

Dates to remember:

Mental maths homework is due every Tuesday

Canberra Meeting: Monday 25th June 3.15 – 4.15pm

Annie: Tuesday 26th June class excursion to St. Michaels.

Canberra Trip for seniors only: 1st to 5th August.

Spinal Awareness – 9th Aug.

Cross country - 18th August.

Book review due – Mon 29th August.

Montessori Expo & Italian assembly – 31st August.                                              

Father’s Day stall – 2nd September.                                                                                  

Concert Practise – 14th September.

Concert – 15th September.

 

Have a wonderful Term!            Elizabeth, Teresa & Jody


 

Cubing...

Amphibians cubing...

Using our cubing material, we created a house and we worked out the volume of it using the order of operations (PEMDAS). It was interesting to learn the volume of the structure. We really enjoy using this material and doing this work.

Sari and Luca

Parsing...

Amphibians parsing...

This morning I did parsing and sentence analysis with Annette. I learnt about phrases. I learnt about auxiliary verbs. I also learnt about noun  families. I didn't do this at my old school and I'm happy to be learning about a new topic. It was very fun!

Amphibian News Term 2 – 2016

Welcome back to Term two! I hope you had a wonderful and relaxing Easter. Thank-you so much to the Esam family and the Smith family for looking after the chickens over the holidays. Thankyou also to the Yee family for looking after our Hermit crabs.

Our work this termAcquarium 3A

We have an exciting, busy term planned. We are studying coastlines, ecosystems and habitats with a focus on life in fresh water and the oceans. The children have asked to each create a diorama to show their understanding of this work. This task has been explained to the children, with examples shown. The children will be required to choose a sea creature and show either a food chain or/and habitat of their chosen sea creature. Their diorama may also include the coastline as well. Initially, the children will need to study their animal and work out what they’ll display. I have included a picture of a diorama here.

We are terribly excited about our excursion to Under Water World Sea Life Aquarium next week. Our huge thanks to Gemma’s Mum and Ivan’s Mum for transporting the children. This excursion would not have been possible without parents’ help – thank you! We are doing two programs at Under Water World:

Habitats - This program is designed to introduce the sun as an energy-provider and how energy flows in aquatic ecosystems. Watery Worlds also teaches students about the influence land-based food webs can have on those in the ocean. Your students will discover the differences between predators and prey; decomposers and scavengers and; producers and consumers.

Adaptations

A program designed to teach your students all about the three different adaptations animals and plants have to survive in the aquatic environment – structural, functional and behavioural. This program also looks at relationships between animal structural and functional adaptations.

Mathematics

I continue to work on mental strategies with the children e.g. 100 – 43 (take 43 to 50, then 50 to 100), estimation, checking etc. Please support your child with helping them to memorise their times tables. My expectation is that Juniors should know 2,3,4’s; Middles should know 5, 6, 7’s; and seniors should know 8, 9, 11 & 12. All Seniors should be automatic to 12 and mastery is achieved when 100 multiplication sums can be done in under five minutes. Please would you support your child with this.

How else can you support your child at home?

¯  Reading – get your child to read to you, taking note of the punctuation. No amount is ever enough!

¯  Handwriting.

¯  Discuss spelling interesting new words.

¯  Create learning opportunities out of anything – quantities when cooking. comparing weights – including litres, kilos, distance – what does a kilometre look like? How fast am I travelling in kmph? If I’m driving at 60 how long will it take to get there?

Events:

St Columban’s visit 21st April

Under Water World and Anzac Day assembly 2pm 26th April

Sports Day 29th April

Grace Lutheran College taste and see for seniors on 9th May

Naplan 10th to 12th May

QUT excursion 7th June

Parent Conferences 6th to 10th June

Arts Council 10th June

How can we stay in touch? - channels of communication

Please feel free to contact me by using the paper kept outside the classroom to write a note. I am usually available Monday and Tuesday afternoons at 3.20pm for appointments. Please know that I greatly appreciate staying in touch with you and I appreciate just a ten minute catch up chat after school.

Have a great term! Elizabeth & Teresa J


 

cat in the hatAmphibian’s Newsletter Term1, 2016

 

Welcome back!

We hope that everyone has had a safe and happy holiday and is as excited as us to be back! We love seeing how tall the children have grown, their happy and relaxed faces and their enthusiasm to work.

This term we welcome six new students to our class. Ivan, Kiara, Merit, Ryan and Shae join us from Cycle Two and have become our new juniors. We also welcome Annalise Smith, a new CMS student to our school community. Welcome to the Amphibian’s class!

I would like to invite the parents of the new students to come and have and have a meeting with me, so that I can find out more about your child and how best they learn. I’d like to schedule this in weeks 3 and 4 and I will try to organise a meeting time that best suits us both.

Thank-you also, for all the lovely Christmas presents that I received at the end of 2015. Thanks, so much! Some children often ask what I’d like and the best presents for me are ones where everyone benefits - like tea-towels for the classroom, dusting brushes, drinking glasses, a book for the class library, or reference books for the classroom. I so appreciated your Christmas generosity – thankyou!

A big thank you to those families that helped with our animals during the holidays, we truly appreciate your dedication.

Cycle Three

Cycle three presents many opportunities for personal and academic growth. Our curriculum is structured so that your child improves with their independence and increases their confidence and self-worth. The metamorphosis of a cycle three student over the three years is amazing. We see this each year as our students graduate and leave us for high school. Some things that we offer are:

  • Dance Fever for all our students to improve their self-expression, respect, etiquette, school spirit, team work and sportsmanship. An added skill, is learning how to behave respectfully with the opposite gender.
  • Practical life opportunities – where children experience real-life skills in a purposeful way and gain an understanding that everyone must work and help, not only for themselves but also for others. Practical life activities help give the child a sense of being and belonging revolving around four areas – Caring for the Self, Caring for the Environment, Grace and Courtesy and Movement. Practical life opportunities are an integral part of any Montessori curriculum. In cycle three, children may care for the chickens; grow a vegetable garden; sew; learn about own body needs, manage the classroom environment, or help with the organisation of the school.
  • Leadership program for senior students – Our senior students help organise assemblies and manage technology; invite special guests; deliver speeches in assembly; care for the school chickens; attend YLead leadership training; work with dementia patients at RSL care; assist younger children with their learning; help manage the classroom environment plus apply for and complete work experience. A regular meeting is held with our principal to discuss what leadership means.
  • Personal Growth - The children mature in Cycle three where more focus is on initiative; responsibility; independence; public speaking; care of self, community and our Earth; critical thinking; justice and also a discovery of their special gifts enabling their contribution to our class and CMS community.
  • Preparation for High school – In cycle three, we work on confidence of the self, resilience, problem solving, planning, computer and book research work; assignment writing; time-management and calendar planning.    

Our work this term:

We will begin the term with setting up systems in the classroom, jobs, grace and courtesy plus leadership and friendship lessons. We’ll move into our term’s work on Energy and Matter and this will lead to group research projects on inventors and inventions through the ages. These topics of study were requested by the students last year. It fits well with our work on the Coming of Man plus Montessori’s First Great Story – so I’ll tell that story again soon. The children also requested that they create our play for our concert inspired by Dr Suess. Studying Dr Suess’s stories lends itself to creating amazing artwork, poetry and literature. The children are loving being read Dr Suess stories and some are already starting to write poetry in his style. I always try to teach according to the children’s requests and interests and I’m so thankful for their wonderful choices that they’ve made with both these topics.

Quick notes:

  • Please would you remind your child to always bring their school bags on the last day of each term. The children need their bag to take home their hats for washing, their Tupperware containers from shared morning tea, finished school books and their personal items.
  • Donations of tea-towels and cleaning rags – would be greatly appreciated.
  • Your child’s book review is (always) due on Monday of week 8 and this is attached.
  • Your child’s spelling list is also attached. Please ensure your child revises their words each week. At times it may fall out of alignment; however your support from home is appreciated.
  • Please help your child to revise their times tables and number facts. Repetition is essential for automation.
  • Start a habit! Ask your child what they learned today and to tell you three positive things about their day.
  • Please encourage your child to bring their water bottle each day. Hydration in this heat is so important. It is doubly essential on Thursdays when sport is on.
  • Mental maths is due each Tuesday. Please would you support and encourage your child to complete their work on time. New junior students are not required to do mental maths homework, however they can if they request it.

You are always welcome to try to catch me for a quick chat after school on Mondays, Tuesdays and Thursdays. I love keeping in touch with you.

Finally….

Thankyou parents, for your smiling faces, your helpfulness, your support and entrusting us with your beautiful children. Both Teresa and I are looking forward to a fantastic, wonderful and amazing 2016.

From Elizabeth and Teresa


 

Amphibian News Term 4, 2015

WOW! The students in the Amphibians class held a special event for their families on the 17 November: 3A Cafe. The event included students and parents sharing an afternoon tea with delicious morsels and student presentations of work and talents. We were invited to a visual and auditory feast of stories, jokes, dances and an impressive story telling segment about the Montessori story of 'Coming of Man'. The students with the support of our wonderful parents and class directors, Elizabeth and Teresa, designed a world map representative of our continental structure. Students made artifacts of early man and used these to enhance their section of story telling of our ancestral history.

Thank you for sharing this with parents and staff.

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SCIENCE WEBINAR 6TH NOVEMBER 2015

 Today the Amphibian's class enjoyed a science Webinar with three other schools. We demonstrated our weather science experiments across the web to the other schools in Perth, Sydney and Toowoomba. Our children loved this new experience and we hope to do more. It was awesome! A huge thanks goes to Psyche, our CMS IT Specialist for setting it up. Thanks!!!

 

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The Amphibian's class have finally finished their recipe books. They stamped leaves and sewed around them, then finally made their art work into binder covers. They've been growing vegetables in our community garden and cooking the food and writing up recipes. Most meals were for tasty lunches. What gorgeous, practical keep-sakes!

Our students have worked on integrating their technology studies, with art, botany, language and cullinary explorations.

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                                                                           type os amphibians

Welcome back to Term 3!

Please find attached your child’s spelling list and term book review.

Our play

We are recreating the Shoemaker and the Elves. The children are excited about this play and creating the props. Charlotte Ruffell has been busily researching plays for almost a year now and we’ve finally decided. We will get active this week on our script, the children’s character roles and figuring out the children’s costumes.

Can you help us please by sending in:

  • Glass bottles for prop painting (please remove the label)
  • Ice cream containers for paint
  • Art Smocks – Men’s old large shirts
  • Can someone please make a new canvas on our backdrop? This would mean buying the fabric (you’ll be reimbursed with receipt), sewing it together and attaching it with a staple gun (we have one). Then putting on a base coat of house paint (which we have too).
  • Old high heal shoes and boots for props.

Canberra

Our Senior students will be visiting Canberra during week 5. They will be accompanied by Anne Miller and Yvonne Packbier. The Canberra trip is an amazing experience to learn about Canberra and Australia’s democratic government. Canberra trips now take place each year for the senior students only. We began our term with a visit from Greg Chippendale, Division 3 Councillor of Moreton Bay Regional Council. Cr Chippendale was well received by the children; he explained how local council works – thanks!

Wizard of Oz at St Columban’s College

Last week, the children attended the performance of the Wizard of Oz. They loved it! They were astounded at the work and creativity of the performance of the high school students. It was a fantastic opportunity and a huge thanks goes to St Columban’s for their free bus transport and free performance.

CMS Orchard

On the last day of term two, Environment Day, the Amphibian’s class paired with the Sea Stars Class to plant an orchard. Together we planted thirteen fruit trees – Mandarins, Oranges, Lychees, Lemons, a Fig, a Nectarine and a Peach. The Amphibian’s dug the holes and prepared the site. The Sea Stars placed mulch down and together they planted the trees. Our vision is for eventually, all CMS children to be able to help themselves to a piece of fruit. As a practical life task, we aim to teach the children in each cycle to be able to recognise when fruit is ready and to always share. The Amphbian Seniors have been watering it regularly. We can’t wait!

RSL Care

RSL care continues to be a valued exchange of support and friendship between the dimentia residents and our CMS seniors. We’ve recently met with the staff at RSL care, to improve matches with clients and Seniors, the children have created an interests profile. RSL care will endeavour to match clients with students better. We have also decided to take turns with C3B - meaning that C3A will go fortnightly. Debbie Smith has thankfully agreed to providing transport for the Amphibian Seniors in term three. Please consider helping us with transportation in term four, as we will need help then. If you can let me know now, it’d be a great help with preparation for term four.

Science – Animal Kingdom Projects

The children have shown a curiosity with understanding the classification of the Animal Kingdom, but more so with orders and their favourite animals. So rather than study the whole of the Animal Kingdom, we have chosen to study vertebrates and divide these into warm blooded and cold blooded animals. The children have started off by learning what Kingdom, Phylum, sub-phylum, class, order and family means. They are keen to deeply understand what a mammal is, a monotreme, a marsupial etc. And they have been actively debating this – great! They have already formed small groups. The children will create a small research project and can choose from fish, mammals, amphibians, reptiles and birds – so that they can study their favourite animals. As a culminating task, they will compile their research projects and together we will make a class animal classification chart.

Help needed – sewing book covers onto Recipe folders

We have been printing leaves and hand-sewing our recipe folders. The children have been handwriting the recipes we’ve cooked last term and also collected their own precious family recipes for inclusion. They are loving this recipe book keepsake.

Most of the students’ recipe folders are finished. With Helen Spry’s help, we have sewn ten folders, but there are ten more to do. Do you have a sewing machine and would you like to help please? I can send an example home for you to copy. It’s very simple machine sewing but a bit too fiddly for the children to do. Please let me know if you can help and thanks in advance. A huge thankyou to Helen for helping!

Book Review

I have found that the children struggle with planning and scaffolding independent written or research work. So to help them, especially in preparation for high school, I will give them the following book review task and then in class I will guide them through breaking the task down and figuring out how to do the book review themselves. This will help the children with any future tasks so that they can learn to do it independently. It’s a process and will take practise and support from you too. With last term’s book review, I scaffolded it for them. I don’t think doing that is helping the children at all. It is a necessary skill to learn to make a plan and create a piece of work when given a short task question. Just for your information (in case your child doesn’t bring home the review sheet), the task is here:

Be a TV or radio reporter, and give a report “live.” The book you have read has just become a best seller and you must explain why the story, characters and the conflicts are important for the viewer to buy the book and read it. In class we will make a list of the steps you need to do to complete this review. This is an oral book review only. No written work needs to be submitted. You are expected to use palm cards.

Study Leave

During term three and four I am taking eight days each term to complete my NAMC Montessori studies. I have been helping the children with planning their work and knowing what’s expected on days that I have off. Jacqui Herbaut will relieve for me on those days. I am not going ‘part-time’ and the children will continue with the Amphibian curriculum as set. I plan on completing my Montessori Qualification by the end of this year. I am loving my course and also loving the new ideas for teaching that it is giving me. For term three, I am taking either a Tuesday, Wednesday or Friday.

As always, I enjoy catching up with you. Please feel welcome to see me straight after school for any urgent matters. Thankyou for entrusting your precious child’s education with us. We have the most wonderful children at CMS, and they are definitely a pleasure to teach!

Elizabeth & Teresa


Amphibian News Term Two - 2015

Chickens learn too!

Catherine, our happy Coronation Sussex loves coming into the classroom to watch the children use the Stamp Game Material. Here, Ellie and Grace are mastering subtraction with trading whilst Catherine is pottering through, looking for crumbs. I love how the children continue working while a chicken walks through the room.

Elizabeth, Teresa & Hayley

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amphibian 2

Dear Parents,

Welcome back to term two! 

Camp

We began our term with a terrific camp at Ewan Maddock Dam Recreation Centre. It was a fantastic camp with plenty of opportunities for the children to challenge themselves with Canoeing, Bush craft, Archery, Mid ropes, The Yoyo and Raft building. I am very impressed at the keenness of all the children to get involved and make new friendships. The children had a fantastic time. They were well behaved, helpful, respectful, mostly went to bed when asked and there were no serious injuries. They should be very proud of their personal achievements with getting in and enjoying new experiences. We had an awesome camp!

Chickens

A huge thankyou to the families who cared for the chickens over the holidays. If every family looks after the chickens just once over the three years, then every family will only need to do it once. If you haven’t done it, please will you consider taking your turn – thanks in advance.

ANZAC day work

To begin the term, we have been studying the history behind WWI, ANZAC day and Gallipoli. The children have been keen to gain a deeper understanding of why ANZAC day is so important to our country.

Our work this term

We will continue on with Botany. The children are really enjoying this work and love discovering examples of the different phylum. On camp, the children started to collect samples to create a research area following their path of enquiry. Please ask your child what they intend to do their project on and please help them collect samples. By week 3, your child should have a clear idea of their project and have it completed by week 5. Here is a list of example ideas:

  • Make a collection and present a project on seeds we eat;
  • Make a collection and present a project on different kids of seed pods;
  • Make a collection of seeds that disperse in different ways – wind, water etc.
  • Make a fungi collection.

Children are able to display their project in any form – e.g. a chart, a powerpoint, pressed examples, create a card sort, laminate examples, collect and display bottled examples, colour photo copy examples for presentation etc.

This work will be done in class and collections can occur at school, however your child will need your help to collect a wide variety of samples and this may need to supported by you.

Excursion / Incursion

To support our work on Botany, we are hoping to go out to a local nursery that specialises in native plants and bush tucker. We are currently organising this and we will let you know the details once we’ve finalised them.

Cooking

We will continue cooking this term on a fortnightly basis. The children have loved choosing simple recipes that they can replicate at home - for their own lunch boxes. The children will be covering their recipe folder and keeping their recipes safe within it.

Communication

If there are any parents who don’t receive this printed term newsletter (separated families), I am happy to email it to them. Please would you supply me with an email address so I can keep all parents informed.

How can we stay in touch?

Please feel free to contact me via the communication book or by sending a note. From there we can make an appointment. I am usually available Monday and Tuesday afternoons after school. I greatly appreciate staying in touch with you. It is too difficult to catch me in the mornings as I am planning for the day.

Term two’s book review and spelling list is attached. Please help your child to choose a book. The review is due in week eight.

Please stay in touch! And thanks for all your support. Have a great term J

Elizabeth and Teresa


CMS students share....

 24th March 2015 - Sari and Charlotte are using the geometry sticks to make different sized isosceles triangles. Sari is making an octagon and plans on measuring the interior angles. The girls are seeking to find a pattern with interior and exterior angles of polygons.

Constructive triangles C3A


10th March 2015 - Hi! My name is Charlie and I am definitely over ten years old. I may not look terribly handsome as I was five years ago, but my ladies still make me feel like the king of the castle.

I stand outside the Amphibian's classroom everyday, and watch the children like they are goldfish. I go to sleep, I wake up. I don't move. I help myself to their food. I have a great life.

Charlie

 


By courtesy of eARTh magazine - The Water Issue:

 

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As our students are working in the discipline of Botany this term, it is apt to share the creativity of our students, extended to other facets of environmental education. Sari Conte C3A student, added her perspective and imagination to the article above. - Science and Art. 


Botany - Science and Art

Our Cycle three children are studying Botany. They created an Ikebana which is the Japanese art of flower arrangement. They loved it!

IMG 8539  See the completed work in administration.

Plants are necessary for our survival as a species. The C3A class created a Web of Life to show the interconnections by using pictures and string. They discovered that without each component, our Earth wouldn't survive.

IMG 8479 We need everyone and everything in nature!

 


Amphibian News Term One - 2015 Amphibian

Dear Parents,

Welcome back to a new year! A special welcome to our new students: Sky, Ellie, Max, Charlotte, Josh, Gemma, Oskar, Connor and Grace.

We have a very exciting term ahead. We will begin the term with grace and courtesy, classroom rules, organising our timetables and for the new students – learning how the classroom runs with independent learning and being responsible for own learning.

Language and Maths

We have several focuses this term; however, I have identified that language needs attention and so our focus is on comprehension, spelling, improving writing skills and handwriting. Mathematics is just as important, but the children seem to enjoy using the materials and the need seems to be more on language at the moment.

Please, I can’t stress enough, please ensure that your child is reading daily at home. Children also love to be read to at night and somehow older children (in cycle three) miss out on these moments as parents don’t think it’s still necessary. It is! Let your child hear the expression you use when you use punctuation as a guide for expressive reading. Our voices change for speech, for questions, for exclamations, etc. Expressively reading to children helps their understanding of punctuation and also the diverse range of sentences – simple, compound and complex.

Botany

We will be focussing on botany this semester (term 1 and 2). Our work will be greatly influenced by the amazing grounds of our school. We will identify plants, both native and introduced; we will work with the plant kingdom nomenclature and identify the various forms of leaves, roots, flowers, herbs, seeds, fruit, etc. Students will follow their own individual path of enquiry. We will study the interrelationships of humans, animals and plants. I have made a phenomenal amount of work for the children to choose from. If you’d like to enhance your child’s Botany experience, you may want to send in a plant for your child to care for. Or maybe a pot / potting mix / seeds to grow at school. Please don’t go out and buy these items – send in only if they are already available at your home.

Cooking

Last year, our then middle and junior group (now seniors and middles) asked for our class to do cooking. We have decided to cook on a fortnightly basis and each contribute $10 to pay for ingredients. We have done this before and it was quite successful. At this stage, I am unsure if the children will want to continue cooking next term – I will let you know. I’m guessing it is very likely! We are hoping to integrate our gardening / botany work with the meals we make. The children have also asked to make their own recipe book to keep. They have decided that it would be helpful if we cook healthy snacks so that they know how to cook them at home and bring these to school. They also want to collect recipes in their folder.

To support your child with their learning choices, please would you send in $10 plus a ringed binder. I will go to Spotlight to buy calico and we will sew covers on the folders. The sewing component may not begin till next term as this is a semester-long project.

Dance Fever:

Each year, our cycle three’s participate in dancing lessons. The Dance Fever crew usually teach the Waltz, Hiphop, The Jive and The Tango. The children are really enjoying Dance Fever and it is part of our Arts curriculum. At the end of term, (Monday, 30th March), CMS will hold a Dance Fever event. More information will be provided by Nicky in the office in due course (if it hasn’t already been emailed out).

Labelling: Please, please ask your child to label all of their belongings. Frequently hats, socks, shoes, lunchboxes and drink containers are left lying about. Your children are very ‘giving’ with their lunch containers and if they are in doubt about their ownership, they will often say that the container might not be theirs. So frequently, we have many unclaimed lunch boxes and small containers. Please name everything! Thanks!

RSL care

Our seniors have already begun their community service. Each week they’re taken to RSL care to visit an elderly person. The children are paired up with an RSL care resident and they form good relationships. Most residents have dementia and it is amazing to see our senior students show love, care and patience towards their elderly friend. The children usually play cards, talk, play games, read, knit or make loom bands with their special friend.

Homework:

Book reviews: Each term, your child is required to read a novel and review it. Please would you assist your child in finding a suitable book (preferably non-fiction). We always start off with a ‘standard’ book review and become more creative as the year progresses. Your child will be expected to complete their review and present it to the class in week eight (16th March). The book review is attached.

Spelling: I have also included a spelling list of the words each week that your child learns. I encourage you to discuss spelling and word meanings. This list is given for at-home support as it raises confidence in class when your child already knows their words.

Mental maths: Mental maths is due each Tuesday – but never in the first or last week of term. Juniors are not required to do mental maths homework.

Life homework: By this we mean, talk to your child! Explain clearly day to day life skills. Quite often we have "spontaneous homework" when a student is inspired by a topic they are researching in school and they find a book or a video at home or in their local library and continue their research. As this is a student initiated, self-directed activity it is a relevant experience as "Our aim is not merely to make the child understand and still less to force him to memorise but to touch his imagination as to enthuse him to his innermost core" (Maria Montessori: To Educate the Human Potential 1932).

Our new outside work area

Teresa, our lovely assistant, has found an outdoor setting for the children to work on. We’ve put it behind the classroom. Does anyone have any acrylic paint that is a natural, quiet colour so that the children can repaint it? We’d also need some paint brushes too. Many thanks!

Knowing personal details

Does your child know their address? Your mobile number? Their own birth date? Put this information into context for them. For example, it is easy for a child to rote learn their address, but do they really understand what it means? On a walk, look at the number on the letter box and see how it matches your mail. Read the street sign, discuss the difference between crescents, streets, lanes, circuits, etc. When you return home, look at a map and show how your suburb sits in the state of Queensland and the country of Australia.

Call home – let your child press the buttons. Revise with your child what they’ll say so that they’re prepared to talk on the phone. Discuss their birth date. Did any other significant event happen that year?

Tea towels

We need new ones!

Food scraps

We need scraps for the chooks (no potato, pumpkin or onion). Thankfully, your children eat most of their lunch so our lunch wastage is quite minimal. Your vegetable kitchen scraps are needed please!!!

How can we stay in touch?

Please feel free to contact me via the communication book OR by sending a note. From there we can make an appointment. I am usually available Monday and Tuesday afternoons after school. I greatly appreciate staying in touch with you. It is too difficult to catch me in the mornings as I am planning for the day.

Meeting new parents

I would love to arrange a meeting to get to know the parents of the juniors. I’ll organise this at the class meeting. If you’re unable to attend the meeting, I’ll put up a signup sheet.

Don’t forget hats and drink bottles need to be brought every day!

As always, we have a vibrant lovely group of children who are settling in well. Juniors usually take a while to settle in – making new friends and adjusting to a heavier workload. Middles enjoy knowing the ropes and Seniors love the opportunity to become even more responsible and lead.

And finally…

Thanks, parents, for your helpfulness and support. We are all looking forward to a fantastic, wonderful and amazing 2015 for our Amphibians family.

From Elizabeth and Teresa 


February 2015 - Welcome back to our Amphibians and to their creative and exploring minds!!!

C3 work

Our C3 group were using the Golden Beads to exchange and record large numbers on a place value chart. The children were gaining an understanding of heirachy, squared numbers, cubed numbers and making solid connections with large numbers.

C3 work2  

The children were using the peg board to complete binomial squaring. They can't wait for trinomials and quadranomials! 


2 September 2014

Work, Work Fun Work!

Lara, Lochie, Riley and Jack enjoyed using the peg board to make this quadranomial.

Amphi 2 Sep    Amphibians Sep

"This is 2759 squared. The answer was so big that we ran out of hundred pegs. If I had a dollar every time I made a connection, I'd be rich." (Riley W) "My brain hurts now, but it was worth it." (Lochie P) 


From Seed to Table

One of the students from C3A Will Spry asked the teacher Elizabeth Hudson to supply him with broccoli seedlings for the community garden. And so she did. With the help of Luca and Chloe, Will dug, planted and watered his beloved Broccoli.

Today was the big day. Will and his friends picked it and we will stir fry it for the class next week. It's the most perfect broccoli I've ever seen!

ElizabethWill C3A

 


Ancient Civilisations are alive today - 30 August 2014

The Amphibians are working with Ancient Civilisations this term and are very excited about the manner with which they have developed a timeline, using artefacts they have creatively made.

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The Amphibians have worked hard during Term 2 with grammar symbols and sentence analysis. Below are some examples of their interesting work. In Term 3 we will be addressing comprehension as well as many other areas of literacy.

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The Caboolture Montessori School's mission is to educate individuals in our school and community by implementing the Montessori philosophy and methodology. Our aim is to prepare a developmentally appropriate environment to encourage our children to responsibly and respectfully engage in their learning journey.

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  • Address: 200 Old Gympie Road, Caboolture, QLD, 4510, Australia.
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