Newsletter Week 11 Term 1

Sawyers Bay School 14th April 2022


Kia ora Whanau,

Firstly I would like to welcome Lily to Papatuanuku. We are thrilled to have you and your family with us, Lily.

I would also like to thank our wonderful staff for their extra efforts over the last two weeks. Unfortunately I have been working from home for the last two weeks (minus two days where I was in the clear!) as COVID made its way very slowly through our family. During this time, the staff have been covering their own classes, home learning and my workload. A big ask and a great effort thank you team.

While we have had challenges through finally having COVID in our community and high levels of disruption as we navigate different requirements, the one consistent has been the attitude of our kids. We are very privileged to be able to work with such enthusiastic and positive learners. Spending time in the playground or classroom is certainly tonic for the woes of the world.

Thank you to all families for your patience with staffing this term. We are very proud to have been able to continue to run the school all term despite significant staff absences due to COVID requirements. A special thank you to Annette Smith who has been able to cover much of this absence and take great care of our tamariki.

The PTA have recognised the challenges, cancellations, disruptions and general COVID fatigue that our kids have seen this term. They have decided the best way to finish the term is with a little treat for the kids. Thanks again to the PTA for always thinking about our tamariki.

Have a great and safe Easter Break. We very much look forward to Term 2.

Ka mihi nui,

Gareth Swete

Upcoming Events

  • Good Friday - Friday 15th April
  • First day of Term 2 - Monday 2nd May


This week we welcome Lily McLachlan to our class. Welcome to Papatūānuku and Sawyers Bay School Lily!

Last week we went to the Orokonui Ecosanctuary. Our highlights were:

-seeing the Takahe (Tegan)

-feeding meat to Waimarie the eel (Alexie)

-seeing a fantail that kept following us (Zoё)

- making the seed bombs that will grow in the forest (Olivia)

-seeing a fantail in a tree (Benji)

- seeing the black and white skink (Riley)

- we called the fantail by rubbing our knuckles into our lips to make a fantail noise (Hank)

We are very thankful to the parents that came with us to enjoy the day.

Back at school, we have been learning to weave with wool. We have made little baskets out of yogurt containers and wool. Today we did finger knitting to make a handle. They are looking great.

We have also been learning which way is left and which way is right. Beebot and the Hokey Tokey dance have been great tools to help us learn this! We hope you all have a great Easter and Autumn holiday break.

Report by Papatūānuku


What an amazing day last Monday was. After getting to school and getting ready we were off to the Ecosanctuary with Papatuanuku, where we were welcomed by the Lovely Tahu and Johnathon. We split up into two groups and off we went on our adventures. Our first adventure was visiting the Takahe and their babies. We were exceptionally lucky to watch them feeding with their parents up close. Once a day they get fed a cup of a special meal that helps them grow. We went for a walk in the cloud forest and saw lots of NZ native birds. This week in writing we wrote letters to the Easter Bunny saying thank you for all the wonderful easter eggs he brings to us with a focus on capital letters and fullstops. Then we colored our bunnies and put them together with our writing.

Report by Mrs Brewer


It has been so wonderful to hear all of the wonderful and fun things the children have been doing while I have been absent for the past couple of weeks. I am really missing being at school and look forward to being back in Term 2! Over the past couple of weeks, we have welcomed our student teacher Baylea Carston. She has been enjoying getting to know all the children and routines and will be with for a further 5 weeks at the beginning of term 2. Our bug topic has continued with some AMAZING artworks being created. I felt very lucky to be able to see these (and the children!) on Friday when they shared them for our Zoom assembly - see pic below. There have also been some further arts and crafts made around the Easter theme as I am sure most of you will have seen some of these come home yesterday. I hear they were all very proud of their creations. Next term we will be hitting the ground running with our new topic “Telling Tales”. This will see us exploring well known fairy tales, looking into folklore and even creating our own stories.

I wish everyone a very happy, safe and fun filled break and look forward to seeing everyone again next term.

Report by Mrs Swete

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Kia Ora from Ranginui

What a great term- thanks for being so kind, everyone. We have all shown that we are a fabulous team and together we can do GREAT things. The students of Ranginui have had such success in their learning and as term one ends we are excited to continue this journey with you all.

Our inquiry study took on a whole new emotion today as we felt proud to be able to lay the memorial white crosses in front of the Sawyers Bay War Memorial. It was an honour to share the ANZAC ode as the school gathered together to pay our respects to the men and women who bravely fought in both world war one and world war two. I do encourage you and your family to attend a dawn service as not only does it show our respect to those who have gone before us but helps our next generations to understand.

Lest We Forget

I hope everyone has a safe and happy term break and look forward to seeing you next term.

Report by Ms Ruzsa

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On Monday Hinemoana was lucky enough to visit the Orokonui Ecosanctuary. We had a beautiful day in the sunshine exploring Orokonui and learnt a lot. We saw lizards, Takahē, bright orange Kākā, Fantails and a South Island Robin just to name a few. We also got to see and smell the Easter Orchid which only blooms once a year, talk about good timing! (You can see some of our photos below.) A big thank you to our parent helpers and to Taylor from the Orokonui Ecosanctuary for your help on our trip.

Lastly, Hinemoana wishes everyone a Happy Easter and we hope you enjoy the school holidays. We will see you back for Term 2 in a couple of weeks!

Report by Miss Laing

Tāne Mahuta

In Tane Mahuta we have been working on our Tūrangawaewae Inquiry unit. For part of this unit we have been making some more connections to our place and learning more about ourselves. We have done this through creating visual pēpeha in circular templates. For these visual pēpeha we not only had to identify and create our pēpeha sentences - but, we had to add imagery to represent these places and things also. We focused on our maunga (mountain), awa or moana (river/body of water), kura (school), whanau (family) and ingoa (ourselves). We have been practising our pronunciation when presenting and reading our pēpeha aloud. We enjoyed sharing these with the rest of the school in Assembly last week and we have now proudly got these displayed in our classroom. We can’t wait for people to come take a look at them, along with all of our other cool work when they next can!

Report by Miss Tenci

Sports News

This Week's results:


SBS Villa POD Callan

SBS Gunners win by default

Community Notices

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School Holiday Aquavan Adventures @ Port Chalmers Library

Through hands-on encounters, learn about animals in our local marine environment. Find out how these animals protect themselves and find food in coastal waters through fun activities, crafts, and the mobile touch tank.

There will be two sessions on Thursday 28th April 2022 at 10.30am – 12pm and 1pm – 2.30pm

Sessions are FREE to attend but bookings are essential

To book visit:

The Secret Path

Saturday 16–Saturday 30 April

For families looking for super fun (and Covid-safe) activities these holidays, the Secret Path is an interactive art scavenger hunt in the centre city. Pick up a scavenger hunt booklet from the Dunedin City Library and participating shops to start the journey. The booklet contains a map of each artwork clue word - discover all the clues to complete a passphrase sentence and unlock a prize!

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