Newsletter Week 4 Term 1

Sawyers Bay School 23rd February 2023

Principal's Message

Kia ora koutou,

A big thank you to all of our families who have come out this week and participated in the Parent/Child/Teacher interviews. We know that families are busy in the afternoons and evenings, but really do love having the opportunity to sit down with you and have a focused discussion about your children. We also appreciate that often the allocated time only allows us to scratch the surface of what we could discuss. This is simply to be able to get through up to 26 interviews over two nights for our teaching staff. If you feel that you need more time, our teachers are always available and would be happy to meet with you.

It has been great to see our summer term sports teams starting up for the year too. We have a small handful of futsal teams and a touch rugby team busy representing the school. Our sports registrations continue to get smaller and smaller. Again, we know that families are already very committed to many after school activities, but if there are barriers to having your children participate in extra-curricular sports, we would love to know. Kids learn a great deal participating in sports, especially team sports, and we want to find ways to help our kids get involved.

If you have a look at the community notices section of our newsletter, you will find some information about the Ministry of Educations 'Incredible Years Training'. IYT is a course for parents with children from 3-8 and helps to share skills and strategies to maximise children's development and behaviour in a positive way. the This is an opportunity for us parents to learn new skills, consolidate what we already know and have a chance to hear from experts in a group situation. The upcoming sessions for Dunedin are:

Wednesday at Catholic Social Services rooms in Macandrew Road, South Dunedin starting 3rd May

Thursday evenings at Presbyterian Support rooms, Moray Place starting 23 February

Please feel welcome to come in for a chat if you would like to know more about this course.

Mā te wā,

Gareth Swete

Upcoming Events

  • Otago Anniversary Day - Monday 20th March
  • Swimming - Tuesday 21st - Friday 31st March
  • Board Meeting 2 - 6.00pm Tuesday 21st March
  • Last day of Term 1 - Thursday 6th April
  • Teacher Only Day - Monday 24th April
  • ANZAC Day - Tuesday 25th April
  • First day back for students for Term 2 - Wednesday 26th April

No Subway lunches tomorrow

Subway have advised us they are unable to provide lunches this Friday (24 February). Ordering will be back to normal for Friday 3 March.

Te Akonga o te Wiki!

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Term 1 Week 3

Congratulations to Teddy, Martha, Chase, Elma, Liam and Isaac S, who were chosen as their room's Person of the Week. The trophy for Term 1, Week 3 went home with Chase.


Greetings to our SBS whanau and community.

This week, we had lots of discussions and learning activities about frogs, to help us with our phonics learning about the sound ‘f’. Hopefully you saw our wonderful drawings that went home during the weekend in our Poetry books. Remember we have ‘Fun Fact Friday’ coming up again, so if your tamariki have a particular interest in anything that they want to share a fact with us about, then we look forward to hearing those on Friday morning.

We’ve continued our measurement learning about weight, using balance scales to find items that are heavier, lighter, or the same as other items. This has required us to do lots of exploring, inquiring and investigating as we use classroom materials, estimation skills and learning to write up our results. We’re learning to write numbers and have learned a new game which starts with a blank number line, a pen and two dice. Maybe you wish to recreate this game at home? Your child will gladly ‘teach’ you, I am sure!

We’ve continued our learning about how to create a self portrait, this time exploring our school grounds to find items we could use, that had fallen from trees or plants. The photos below show our work-in-progress. Come along to assembly on Friday to see the finished products!

Rīpoata na Mrs Campbell


Konnichiwa, Kia ora, Mālō e lelei, Bonjour, Hello

We have had a couple of cool things happen in Hine-Rau-Wharangi the past two weeks.

Last week we had the pleasure of having some masters students spend time observing our class and the other classes in our school. It was helpful having lots of extra hands to help teach new games. On Wednesday we had a parcel arrive for our class and it was a whole set of the Countdown Farm Series and a game which we are going to be using for a variety of learning activities while doing our reading rotations. This week we have been working on our Pepeha art works to go alongside our class korowai, the class will be showing these in assembly next week. Below there is a link to a variety of learning games your children are excited to learn and play at home if they are allowed. We are also looking forward to meeting with our Buddy Class Hine moana on Friday to teach them a Math game the children have been learning.

Rīpoata na Mrs Brewer


Tāwhirimātea have been working extremely hard on their math skills this week. We have been really enjoying learning a new game called number dots. On Friday we are going to be teaching this game to Tane Mahuta so we are frantically trying to become experts to give us the upperhand. A copy of the game will also come home with your children on Friday so you can play a round or two at home as well. We have also been exploring statistics through posing questions and displaying data on graphs. We wondered if the colours in bags of skittles were evenly spread or if there was one colour that had more than others. We sorted our own packs of skittles and recorded these on a tally chart which we then collated as a class to find out that there were similar numbers of all 5 colours. We then went on to learn how to record this on a bar graph. Armed with these new skills, we are now asking our own questions, surveying the class and will record our findings and make statements about what our graphs show. This week we have also been busy learning about and writing our pepeha which we will publish and practice presenting to the class next week. One topic this term is called “A safe harbour for learning” and we are looking at our community and why it is special to us. The children have shown a real interest in learning about the history of our area, especially the history of our school. This is something that we will look further into over the coming weeks. One reading group have been reading about how pens have evolved over time. They were fascinated about how dip pens worked and we just so happened to have some at school so we got them out and gave them a whirl!

Rīpoata na Mrs Swete

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Kia Ora Whanau

A fabulous week in Ranginui! We have written and signed our own classroom treaty. The students have really thought about taking care of our school and our classroom, especially ways they can help other people. On Friday last week we met with our buddy class Papatuanuku. Everyone introduced themselves in sign language and then we played a few games with our little buddies. Our classrooms will be joining each other to share what we have been learning, buddy reading, and writing together. Ranginui have been great at checking in on their buddies at morning tea and lunch times.

Our inquiry is all about our community and we have begun discussing and writing about the best things to do at my house, in my community and in Dunedin. There are lots of fun things to do in our area!

It was really nice to meet and talk to you at PCT this week. Please keep in touch.

Rīpoata na Miss Ruzsa


We are continuing our learning about our Taku Whakapapa (Our Family Story) in Hinemoana and it has been very cool learning more information about ourselves and our families. Thank you to those who have helped us with this activity and all your time and effort that has gone into sharing your family history. We are excited to edit and re-work our pepeha to include this new information.

Our visual Taku Whakapapa is also beginning to really take shape. The children have worked hard to create a meaningful artwork that represents their family story. You can check out some photos of our draft work here in the newsletter. Next, we are transferring our final compositions to black paper and colouring in with oil pastel. We have done lots of practice with the pastels, learning about how to use them effectively and blend them for our artworks.

We are adding in more Buddy Reading sessions to our week where we are working on our reading fluency. We read aloud to a classmate checking -

  1. Accuracy - I read the words correctly

  2. Rate - I do not read too fast or too slow

  3. Expression - I read with feeling

  4. Punctuation - I follow most or all of the punctuation marks as I read the text

This is a great activity that can happen at home too. Read to each other, then have a chat about the checklist. How did you go? Did you take a pause at the fullstops? Did you try your best to make sure the words you read matched those on the page? Gaining reading fluency is important as it builds a bridge between word recognition and comprehension.

Rīpoata na Miss Laing

Tāne Mahuta

We have spent time this last week building onto the routines we have been learning and will use throughout the year in Tāne Mahuta. Last week and this week we began our new spelling program and have had a “Spelling Rule of the Week” to focus on. We have used these rules in different ways to enable us to build new spelling habits. Last week we learned our rule in buddies completing different tasks and using mini whiteboards. This week we took time learning our new spelling rule and then built words out of scrambled letters that all contained our rule. We have been enjoying puzzling together these new spelling rules and using them in a variety of ways, we have talked about ‘building our new spelling habits’ and we are well on our way to doing so.

We also added on to our fun Oral Language activities which we fit in as part of our Tāne Mahuta morning routine. We learned this week about a new activity called “Picture Talk”. For this activity, Miss Tenci randomly selects groups and images. Once we are given our image we have to come up with a story that explains it while working together. We think about what may have happened before, during and after this image was taking place and collaborate our ideas to come up with a mini presentation which we then share back to our classmates. For our first try we did a fantastic job this week! We shared ideas, and pieced together creative stories and finally shared them back to the class. Nice work kids on your great effort with these new activities!

Rīpoata na Miss Tenci

Sports News

This Week's results:

Touch Rugby

SBS Stingers 2-0 W POD Braxton


SBS Stars 4-0 W POD Alfie

SBS Strikers 5-0 W POD Ava

SBS Sparks 0-4 L POD Braxton

SBS Sweepers 12-0 W POD Liam R.

Community Notices

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