Newsletter Week 2 Term 2

Sawyers Bay School 12th May 2022


Kia ora Whanau,

The highlight for this week has clearly been Harold the Giraffe and Maria's visit in the Life Education Trust bus. The children really enjoyed the interactive lessons on various topics such as relationships, feeling and healthy bodies. Your child should have brought home a booklet with a few activities from the visits. These home activities can be used as a prompt for discussion with home so that you can find out a little more about their visit.

We have seen another spike this week in illness amongst the school, and a few more COVID cases. Unfortunately, epidemiologists are predicting a high possibility of communities contracting significant flu at the same time, and on top of COVID this winter. We do not want this for our children, staff and families which is why we will continue to be vigilant and maintain our current protocols. I wasn't terribly clear about assemblies last update, and I apologise for this. We are gong ahead with Friday Assemblies with the children, however we cannot invite families to join us, or even start schoolwide singing just yet. This is simply to avoid the need for large congregations and children having to pass through large numbers of adults, the same reason we also ask adults to mask up on school grounds so that our children can come and go from school with limited contact. We do really appreciate your patience with us and support.

On a completely different note, it is great to hear all about our children's feats as weekend winter sports start up again. Please feel very welcome to send any photos, or bring trophies/certificates along to school on a Monday morning so that we can help them celebrate their success with their class.

Ka mihi nui,

Gareth Swete

Upcoming Events

  • Tuesday 17th May - Board Meeting No. 3
  • Tuesday 21st June - Board Meeting No. 4

Te Akonga o te Wiki

Congratulations to Haydn, Braxton, Zaria, Emme, Rex and Ollie who were their classes Akonga o te Wiki.

This week the trophy went home with Braxton.

Big picture


We were very excited to have our turn in the Life Education truck classroom this week!

We had heard that Harold the Giraffe would be in there to help us with our learning, so when we finally got to meet him, it was so exciting. He was thrilled to meet us too, and even wanted to be in our photo, outside of the classroom! Can you spot him?

The focus of our learning this week has been around “Feelings”. How to read the feelings of other people, as we see their faces, and then discussions around what we can do about it, if we, or someone else has some feelings, that we could help them through.

As you can see from our photos, we talked about strategies to help us deal with our own feelings. I thought I would share them with you, the whanau of our tamariki, because they might be some strategies you and your child could discuss at home, and try out when needed.


B - Breathe! Hold your thumb up like a candle and breathe in through your nose, then as you breathe out, blow out the ‘candle’.

L - Let it out! Do something physical to ‘let out’ whatever it is that is worrying/stressing us out. Dance, wriggle, shake - whatever it takes, to let out that negative energy!

O - Open up! Talk to someone you trust. The pictures on the wall were all people that we discussed could be good options for the tamariki to talk to if needed, if they had that person or pet available.

W - Work together! Do something with someone else, or with a group. When we do things together, we feel stronger and things aren’t as hard as when we do them on our own.

I hope this is helpful! Please ask your kids what they remember about each one. They were so good at giving answers and suggestions and participating in the interactive and engaging lessons that Maria and Harold kindly provided for us.

Report by Mrs Campbell


How exciting it was to see Harold back again. Harold has been teaching us all about how to be a team player and the qualities of what makes a team player. We discussed the things you should be doing when being and playing in a team and how this also relates to being in the class and with our families at home. Harold was really good at explaining what being a team member was. We talked about strategies to help when playing in teams and being fair. We were very grateful to Harold and Maria for giving us some follow up activities to use in class.

This week in Maths we have been doing a warm up activity called Numble and have been looking at different ways we can use three different numbers from rolling a dice. This week's numbers were 2,4,5 where we had to make different ways of using these. It has been great listening to the Hine-Rau-Wharangi students' discussions and the different Maths problems they have made using these three numbers.

Report by Mrs Brewer


I think it is fair to say that Harrold and the Life Education bus has been the highlight for many of us this week. We have been learning about what makes a good friend and what makes a good leader. One takeaway message we discussed after our first trip was “You don’t have to be a friend to be friendly”. We have written and published the first of our three stories about our past, present and future and are currently working on our present. Next week we will begin working on our future - we will even get to see what we will look like when we are old! I am really proud of how well the children are able to use the correct tense in each piece of writing. You may have heard your children talking about Miss Carston recently. She is studying to become a teacher through the University of Canterbury and we are very privileged to have her in our class supporting the children with their learning (while the children supporting her with her learning!) for another 3 weeks. Last Thursday we began a series of Arts rotations. The children are working in Whanau groups with a mixture of children from all 3 Junior classes. Your children will have 3 Thursday sessions in each class focusing on Drama (Tāwhirimātea), Dance (Hine-Rau-Wharangi) and Music (Papatūānuku). This is such a great opportunity for your children to learn through the Arts while getting to know (or reconnect) with other teachers and children.

Below are a couple of photos of our visit to the Life Education bus to see Harold.

Report by Mrs Swete


Hi from Ranginui

We have a fun week learning about fairy tales and sharing our ideas on how we would solve their problems. We are busy designing new houses for the three little pigs to live happily ever after in. We began by drawing the floor plan of our own homes and talking about the shapes of our houses.

We loved meeting Harold and talking about what makes a good friendship and ways to manage our feelings when things may not go our way. The children will work through the book resource from Life Education and share it with you when it's completed.

At assembly last week we were all introduced to a great maths activity called numble. Using three numbers the children made as many sums as they could, and answers were recorded on a number board. The children have really enjoyed this maths as everyone had good success. I like that they had to explain their equations as this showed such confidence in their number work. We look forward to more open ended problems like this during our daily maths time.

We have a proposed date to visit Orokonui Ecosantuary- 8th June. More information will come home soon.

Report by Ms Ruzsa


We have started exploring fractions in Hinemoana. One of our first tasks was to halve an A4 piece of paper as many ways as we could. It was tricky at first to come up with more than four ways to halve our paper but after some sharing and discussion we were able to show halves in many different ways - not just splitting the paper down the middle with a straight line!

Another task we had to do was share chocolate equally (a very important task as nobody wants less chocolate than someone else!) We asked the question, “If the chocolate on the table I sit at is to be shared equally when I sit down, which would be the best table to sit at?” One table had one chocolate bar, one table had two chocolate bars and one table had three chocolate bars and from there we all, one-by-one had to make a decision and justify our reasoning. In the end we had five people sharing the one chocolate bar (or ⅕), seven people sharing two chocolate bars (or 2/8 each) and 8 people sharing the three chocolate bars (⅜). We think ⅜ is bigger than 2/8 but this has lead us to trying to work out who gets the bigger share between ⅜ or ⅕?

For our topic Telling Tales we are exploring The Three Little Pigs. We have completed a character study about The Big Bad Wolf, thinking about how he looks on the outside, his personality and how he feels on the inside. We are also using this story to help us with another STEAM Challenge. (Watch this space next week to see what it’s all about!)

Lastly, this week we were lucky enough to visit Harold and Maria on the Life Education Bus. We learnt about different types of feelings, what triggers these for us and what we can do when these emotions happen for us. It is super important to remember that there are no bad feelings or emotions, it is how we react that matters.

Report by Miss Laing

Big picture

Tāne Mahuta

This week - even though we had met Harold on the Life Education bus many times before, we were very excited to see him again! The focus for Tane Mahuta’s Life Education sessions this week were managing/defining feelings and learning about empathy. During our sessions we spent time thinking and learning about the different zones that feelings fall into. These zones were the green zone: when you’re feeling good, calm and ready to learn; the blue zone: when you’re feeling sad, sick, down or bored; the yellow zone: when you’re feeling worried, anxious, silly energy and sometimes excited; and the red zone: when you’re feeling angry, annoyed and maybe feel like lashing out! We identified all these feelings and categorised them and then thought about strategies we could use when we’re feeling these certain emotions that would help us feel better.

In order to organise this thinking we separated out different strategies and matched them with the different coloured zones. Some of the strategies that we identified that helped us when we were in the red, yellow or blue zones were: spending time with a safe person, taking a break, spending time with a pet, drawing a picture or taking a walk in nature. We also learned that out of these strategies, there were not ‘right’ or ‘wrong’ strategies to choose when it comes to managing our emotions. If someone is feeling frustrated and taking a walk helps them, great! But if someone else feels frustrated and taking a walk doesn’t help them, but spending time with a safe person does - then that is also totally fine! We learned that we all have different strategies that work for us when it comes to managing our emotions.

Thank you Maria and Harold for coming along and helping us with this important learning!

Report by Miss Tenci

Community Notices

Big picture
Big picture

Terra Nova Keas and Cubs

Terra Nova Sea Scouts have spaces available in their Kea and Cub sections for those in the West Harbour area! Keas is for those 5-8 years old, and Cubs is for those 8-11 years old.

Keas takes place at our Hall on Athol Place on Mondays at 4.30pm and Cubs is on between 6pm and 7.30pm on Mondays.

If you want to know more, look on our Facebook page, or on the ScoutsNZ website

Contact the Group Leader, Mark Forbes (021 276 2214) for more information!