Newsletter 30th June 2022
Taradale Primary School
"The important thing is not to stop questioning. Curiosity has its own reason for existing"
Kia ora whānau
Have you ever wondered what we mean when we talk about student or learner agency? This has been a bit of a 'buzz-word' over the last few years and is used widely around schools yet can mean so many different things too. So what is learner or student agency? At Taradale Primary we have defined it as something where "we enable and encourage our tamariki to take ownership of their learning. This is done in conjunction with our TPS Whakawhanaungatanga and is deliberate". It is really important that we understand that agency can be and can look quite different for many of our learners too, just as it can be different for reading, writing, maths, PE, art and so on. Everyone learns at different ages and stages, and the same applies to being agentic. There are those that relish this and enjoy 'going for it', while others prefer to take a more circumspect and safer route, which can still be a lot more agentic than it was last week!
A big part of learner agency is giving the akonga opportunity to use their voice and when this occurs they tend to take more responsibility as learners, are likely to have stronger relationships with teachers and peers and are much more motivated to learn and to think more deeply about what they are learning. Choices in what we learn are also important and very motivating if they are relevant to that learners interests and goals, are not too numerous or complex and are linked closely to the tamariki's overall sense of culture. So, to allow for this we need to ensure that our learners are able to develop the confidence and ability to be self-reliant and independent. The higher the levels of self-organisation, the more likely the learner is to be able to strive for that greater level of self-reliance.
I have seen so many variations of this theme in a number of kura around the country and the key thing from a principal's perspective is that there should always be that opportunity for direction and guidance from the kaiako. Agency is not a 'free for all do what you like when you like' approach to learning, rather it is an approach that requires high levels of knowledge of the learner, high levels of staff organisation and an ability to guide without taking over. Not as easy as you would think, but ever so rewarding!
So, why can learner agency be so different in different schools? Shouldn't it be the same? No, because the learning context in schools can be so varied. Because the understandings in some schools can be based on what they know and how they perceive the term agency. So, in a nutshell, student agency is something that we continuously strive for at TPS and it is something that adds to what we want to achieve through our Mission Statement, creating lifelong achievers.
A Note from the Board of Trustees
Another role of the Board is to work closely with the Taradale Community Pool Trust and Dolphin Academy to maintain the Green Family Taradale Pool.
An incredible amount of work has gone into the pool over the last 5 years.
In 2016, the Board had to make the difficult decision to close the pool as the roof no longer adhered to earthquake safety standards.
After 4 years of fundraising and hard mahi, the roof was rebuilt and the pool opened for the tamariki from Taradale Primary and other local schools to use for essential swimming lessons and water safety skills.
We are extremely fortunate to have such a fantastic asset on our school site.
- End of Term 2 - Friday 8th July, 3pm
- Term 3 Begins - Monday 25th July, 9am
THE IMPORTANCE OF READING.
Yes, we do bang on a bit about this but it is ever so true that those tamariki who read lots, are read lots to and who enjoy books, tend to be that little bit more ahead in life! True story! It's all those great words and storylines, the places and information, the excitement of learning about new things and cool places! That's what opens their eyes to new worlds...as adults we create readers! Here are some points to think about!
Anyone who can read, can teach a love of reading!
If tamariki love something you can't stop them doing it.
Reading with or to a child is an act of love!
Without a single 'lesson' they will come to love reading.
Our goal should be to instil a love, an attitude, a passion for reading.
You can create a language rich home!
Congratulations to Jayen Hira (Year 3) who has had one of his art pieces selected for the recent Napier Artex exhibition. Jayen's art is based on Matariki. This is so very cool, especially as there have only been 10 pieces selected! Kapai mahi Jayen!
Congratulations to ex-pupil Maia Davis (Year 11) who has just been selected for the Aotearoa New Zealand Rugby League Under 17 team! How fantastic is that! Tu meke, Maia!
We will be receiving a whole lot of ex-Warehouse uniform stock next week and there will be a whole lot of uniforms available for a Friday Flash Sale! Please remember that we will be phasing out these old uniforms over the next three years so this is a great opportunity to pick up those items you need at a cheaper rate than what it would cost you normally! There will be a lot of Polar Fleeces, long sleeve polo shirts and long pants available! Get in quick! More info out early next week!
Te Reo Phrase of the Week
Kia kaha-Stay strong, get stuck in, keep going. Go for it then.
Kia ora whanau, another week, and another update! We have had a really 'slow burn' of cases over this term and that has helped to keep our kura operational and has meant that we have not had to deal with having lots of staff ill. Tino pai!
Over the upcoming holidays it would be great to ensure that your tamariki have an opportunity to regain some energy through relaxing, through taking it easy and spending some good quality time with whanau. Break out the books and Lego, get out the cards and games, and have some fun. Make the most of any warm fine days...nothing beats running around the backyard with the kids! It is important to remember that Term 3 is also often cold and wet so putting up some good healthy defenses is a smart bit of thinking!
Fete Notice 2022
The Y holiday programme