Newsletter Week 7 Term 1

Sawyers Bay School 17th March 2022


Kia ora Whanau,

Firstly I would like to congratulate all of our tamariki on their outstanding efforts in the pool this week. Swimming is hard work and our kids are doing a great job both in the pool, and organising themselves outside of the pool. Thank you to our wonderful families also for having your children so well organised.

As you may be aware, we have continued to see high levels of absences this week. We cannot thank families enough for constantly keeping us informed and up to date. We really do appreciate it. Following up absences first thing in the morning is an incredibly important job for us to ensure every child is where they need to be and having parents email, SchoolApp or call while we have such huge volumes makes it very manageable.

Not having Assemblies at the moment also limits our chance to talk to large groups of families at the same time. One of the jobs we would like to cover is a little tuition on our School App. There are a couple of functions that you may not be aware of. Firstly on the top left corner of the home screen, you will find a menu button. Here you can subscribe to specific groups such as your child's class (we don't often send class specific notices home at this point of time but may in the future), and the sports groups for your sports draws. The second little tip is under the School Info button, you will find a link to our online lunch ordering systems. This includes:

Tuesday - Sushi from Sushi Johnny

Wednesday - PTA Sausage Sizzle

Friday - Subway

I hope that you all have a great long weekend.

Aroha ki te tangata, ahakoa ko wai, ahakoa no hea.

Ka mihi nui,

Gareth Swete

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Upcoming Events

  • Term 1 Swimming - Monday 14th March - Friday 25th March
  • Otago Anniversary Day - Monday 21st March
  • Good Friday - Friday 15th April


Kia ora everyone. Swimming has definitely been the highlight of the week so far! The enthusiasm is running high and the excitement each day is lovely to observe. The best part is watching all of the tamariki, giving every pool task an amazing effort. It’s only been a few days but we’ve seen huge progress already!

A second highlight of the past week has been making toast! During our learning about the sound ‘t’, not only did we draw turtles, we also discussed and put into action, each step required to make toast. This incorporated further learning about halves and quarters. Everyone buttered their own toast and first cut it in half, then in quarters…..before devouring it. The class smelled amazing with the aroma of toast cooking!

We extended our learning about 3D shapes this week, by creating a cylinder to carry exactly 10 dinosaurs. We worked together with a buddy and used teamwork to solve the problem. The finished products looked amazing and clearly met the brief of being a cylinder shape, and the right size to hold just 10 dinosaurs. The ‘Toy Company’ were so impressed with our designs that they rewarded us with a new class game called Headbands. This is proving to be a fun game for learning how to ask questions and using our thinking skills to think…based on what I now know, Who could I be?

Report by Mrs Campbell


This week in Hine-Rau we have been super excited about swimming. The students in Hine-Rau have conquered some fears and are doing lots of wonderful things in their swimming lessons. I am especially proud of the way the students have been using the Sawyers Bay School values in our class this week. They have been showing lots of care and respect by helping each other out in different situations. It also has been great hearing the feedback from Hine-Rau students about some of the activities they have been doing and new learning they are bringing back into the class sharing activities from using the Seesaw platform at home. We thought we would share some of our things from this week with.

At swimming I like doing arm circles on my front (Ella)

I like putting my head under the water when I am on my front (Herepo)

I have enjoyed choosing time in our Reading rotations and Math. (Isaac)

I liked writing long stories and learning to edit my work. (Willow)

We have lots of fun when we are writing. (Rex)

Report by Mrs Brewer

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Did you know that the most common car colour passing our school is white? Closely followed by silver/grey? The least common colour is green. We enjoyed sitting outside on a lovely sunny day creating tally charts of the car colours passing by. Then we worked with a buddy the following day to create bar graphs to display our data. Our sound focus is 'ck' this week. We have learnt that it is usually found at the end of a word and follows straight after a short vowel sound. If it is preceded by a consonant or long vowel then we would usually use the 'k' spelling. Swimming is in full swing now and the children are all doing such a wonderful job. I am so impressed with the progress we are seeing already! We have been using flax and weaving a background to display our pepeha on. It takes great concentration to make sure we have the over pattern perfect! You may have noticed a lack of chip packages coming home in our lunchboxes lately. We have been asked to wash and collect these up as they are going to be used to make survival sheets which will then be distributed to those who are homeless or in need of a thermal blanket. What a great way to reduce waste and help others! Simon kindly lent us a survival blanket from his first aid kit to have a look at, but we decided to put it to the test. We wrapped Bailey up in the blanket and popped a thermometer inside. It showed the air temp was 20deg to begin with but it rose to 30deg after about 15 minutes! (see the photo of taking her temperature below)

Report by Mrs Swete

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Our inquiry this last two weeks has been focused around dinosaurs and fossils. I asked the children what they have enjoyed the most this week and here is their response.

We made quiet critters last week which like to come out to hear us silently read as well as listen to us edit our writing especially telling us where to put full stops and capital letters. They have loved listening to all the new facts about dinosaurs. We have been working on making and answering questions about the bar graphs. One of the activities was to roll a dice and make a tally chart showing the number of times it landed on each number. Each number is related to a dinosaur. It was interesting to compare graphs and talk about the differences. The students also drew amazing pencil drawings of a Tyrannosaurus Rex and learnt the art of smudging to make more definition. Discussion about how fossils are formed led us to making our own dinosaur fossils by making imprints in playdough and filling this with plaster of paris. Students also chose a dinosaur of their own and found ten facts about it and made this into a slide show. We learnt how to copy and paste pictures into the slides. We are going to present these to the class and have a quiz on Friday. Lastly, we have loved going swimming with all making progress in a short time.

Report by Mrs Smith

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We are all things swimming this week in Hinemoana! The children are doing a wonderful job in the pool and progress is already being made. It has been great to see children gain confidence in the water and persevere as they swim many laps in the pool. Swimming is helping our writing this week too where we are writing a descriptive moment in time, making sure to include similes and metaphors. You can check out some of our writing below and some pictures of us in the pool!

In Maths, we are well underway with our Statistics topic and have completed many investigations following the Statistical Enquiry Cycle. Our latest investigation was - How many breaths does it take to blow up a balloon? We all made an assertion (estimation) first of how many breaths it would take us, then we blew up a balloon to see what our actual amount of breaths would be. We then turned our data into a graph using Google Sheets and from there made some conclusions about what the data was telling us. Two of those conclusions are -

  1. The highest amount of breaths it took to blow up a balloon was 14.

  2. The lowest amount of breaths it took to blow up a balloon was 3.

From there we learned about and worked out the mode, mean and range of our data and discovered -

  1. The mode of actual breaths it took to blow up a balloon was 3 and 4.

  2. The mean (average or middle value) was 6.9 breaths to blow up a balloon.

  3. The range is 11.

Phew! That is a lot of new learning. Keep up the hard work Hinemoana!

Swimming Moment in Time Snippets

As I entered the pool I slipped in with a splash. Ripples filled the pool surface. I was in the water. I felt like a seal swimming under the diamond, blue water. By Lolita

As I walked into the loud, echoing pool I saw children swimming right beside me. I jumped in, shivers covered my body and froze me like an iceberg. When I swam I felt as fast as a shiny shark. By Liam Mason

I saw face masks as I gently walked through the doors. The screaming was as loud as a stampede of elephants crossing the swishing water. The diving board spikes were rough underneath my feet. By Harri

Report by Miss Laing

Tāne Mahuta

It has been awesome to see the kids challenging themselves this week at swimming. Though there are now a few tired faces there has also been a lot of excitement and many people already progressing with their swimming in the pool! Each group has been focusing on different skills so far - some have even been trying to just use a board and their breaststroke arms to complete laps of the pool! When completing this particular activity there was a lot of persistence as both balance and coordination had a big part to play. It has been awesome to see that the kids are building on their skills from last year and I’m sure we will only see more progress over the next week! Ka pai Tane Mahuta.

Report by Miss Tenci

Sports News

This Week's results:


SBS Spurs 3-0 W POD Thomas

SBS Gunners 3-1 W POD Liam M.

Community Notices

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