Te Aroha Primary School

Term 2 Week 8 2022

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Kia ora parents and whānau,

Matariki week is this week. We are hosting a Matariki breakfast on Thursday morning in the hall. There was a notice sent home last week on Seesaw with all the details. The most important thing is that you register your child’s interest so that we have enough Kai for everyone. Use this link https://forms.gle/ySvfi7b9MkJdKj5m8 to indicate your child / children will be attending.

Some fun facts about Matariki, Matariki is a star cluster, not a constellation. A cluster is a group of stars that are near each other in space. When seen from Earth, the stars in a constellation appear to be close together in a pattern, but they might actually be far from each other. There are about 500 stars in the Matariki cluster, but only six or seven are visible without a telescope. The star cluster is visible to the naked eye from most parts of our planet. Matariki has many different names around the world. In English, it is called the Pleiades (its ancient Greek name) or the Seven Sisters. The Hawaiian name is Makali‘i, or ‘eyes of royalty’, and in Japan it is Subaru, meaning ‘gathered together’.

Visitors to our School - Kakaramea School Principal Shannon O'Brien is bringing her team to visit our Kura on Wednesday and will be staying for the morning. Shannon is interested in our Vision, values and our hub stories. It is flattering to have visitors coming from the Taranaki region to see the great mahi that we are doing at TAPS. Clearly the good word about our school is spreading across the Motu - keep up the great work team.

Board of Trustees - we have a BOT meeting next Thursday 30 June. If you are interested in the BOT and would like to see how a meeting runs, feel free to come along and join us. Elections are being held later this year. Contact Lucy in the school office for more information about the time and place for the meeting.

Shout out to Room 8 - on Friday last week I got to visit Room 8 and hear about their learning around ancient māori ocean navigation. I was impressed by the knowledge the students had acquired and their sailing boats that they tested with a container of water and a fan were very cool too.

Have a great short week everyone 😊

hari tau hou,

Justin Bertrand



  • Ready, Set, Go! – (1:40pm - 2:40pm), Wednesday 22 June, Wednesday 6 July

  • 23/6/2022 (8:15 - 9:00am) Matariki School Breakfast for TAPS Tamariki - please make sure your child has registered for this event.

  • 24/6/2022 Matariki Public Holiday – Friday 24 June

  • 8/7/2022 Last day of Term 2 – Friday 8 July

Other term dates to be advised.


Totara Springs: Well done to all those who collected chocolates for selling. Let's hope we get some nice weather to get out there and sell.

Netball: We have been asked to remind ALL children to remove jewellery before arriving at the courts. This makes it much easier for everyone. No jewellery is to be worn on the courts - not even earrings taped up.

Rippa: We are still waiting to hear more about the final. If you took a car last time and can’t this time, please let me know.


Senior School Reporters

Morgan, Nicole, Bella and Elisa were our reporters for this week's newsletter - “Bringing extra news and student views to the Newsletter”.

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Meet Our People - Mrs B

This week we interviewed our deputy principal and teacher, Mrs B to find out a little bit more about her for those who might not know her as well as we do.

Mrs B started as a beginning teacher at our school and moved to Te Aroha from Christchurch, where she grew up and trained as a teacher. She is very proud to be part of the teaching staff of Te Aroha Primary School and has taught at our school for nearly 27 years. In fact, she is now teaching children of students from some of her first classes. She has taught from Year 3-8 but just LOVES working within the senior part of the school. Mrs B has taught around 675 students at TAPS.

Here are some fast facts about her

  1. Mrs B has three children - Sophie and Tom, who are twins, and Jack. They all went to Te Aroha Primary School too. She also has a cat called Harry.

  2. Mrs B has a massive fear of birds so Room 10 is a NO BIRD ZONE at all times

  3. She despises peas and watches Shortland Street every night.

  4. She loves black coffee and drinks way too much of it! She reckons she is trying to cut back but Room 10 don’t believe her.

  5. She is a Selfie Queen!


This term, the classes in Te Moananui a Kiwa

(Rooms 8, 9 and 10) have done some amazing artwork.

Room 8

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Earlier this term, Room 8 worked with Mr Barker to design their version of Ureia the taniwha.

Room 9

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Last week, Room 9 had Mr Barker and they learned about Te Ra (The Sun) finding a wife. This legend told the story of the winter solstice and so they created some amazing artwork from this story.

Room 10

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For Samoan Language Week, Room 10 created their very own siapo design based on the legend of the Shark and the Turtle, putting them together to form the larger tapa cloth above.

Our Senior Play Areas

Students in Te Moananui A Kiwa - Hub 3 love playing on our astroturf and the top field. There are always lots of different games happening - tag, netball, basketball and practicing rugby kicks over the posts. Some students just like to hang out and talk in front of their classrooms. Always great to see students having fun and enjoying themselves during break times.

Here are some photos of them in action!

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Room 1 - Mrs Johnson

The week will be filled with Matariki learning, stories and art work. We are looking forward to our school Matariki breakfast on Thursday.

  • LITERACY - Our letterland work is c, k and the ck sound at the end of words. The progress the class is making with blending and segmenting words is really encouraging to see. We are working very hard on correct letter formation so that writing becomes automatic. It is important to remind children that all letters start at the top and go down, it is really difficult to undo incorrect letter formations once they become entrenched. In writing we are working on our individual goals but our class goal is to say the sentence and then write it down using a word card and the letter sounds for other words that are not on the word card. Lastly we illustrate the story we have written.

  • MATHS - Number work is progressing well. We are loving counting collection work and challenging each other to count sets of objects. This week we will continue with backwards counting and before numbers as a daily focus together with working on correct number formation.


  • Please remember your drink bottle, homework books and book bags everyday.

  • It is very helpful to have a change of clothes in school bags just in case they are needed.

Here's hoping our weather will be better this week and we can get out and practise our running in preparation for cross country next term. Enjoy our first Matariki holiday on Friday!

Room 2 – Miss Webb

Welcome to Week 8!

This week we will learn about why we celebrate Matariki. We will be reading lots of Matariki stories and completing special artwork in celebration of the Māori New Year.

Literacy: Last week we enjoyed using picture prompts for our writing and we will continue with this again this week. We will focus on using descriptive language to enhance our writing and make it more exciting for the reader. I was able to assess some students in their reading last week and have been really impressed with the progress using our decodable readers. This approach to reading has reflected positively in our writing too, with more children giving unknown words a go with their phonemic knowledge.

Maths: We have enjoyed progressing with our counting collections and last week one of our groups managed to count a collection of 160! We will continue with our focus on number knowledge this week.

Please remember your drink bottle, homework books and book bags everyday.

Please do not hesitate to contact me via Seesaw or email zwebb@tearohaprimary.school.nz

Room 3 – Miss Swan

Kia ora koutou

Welcome to Week 8! Room 3 is looking forward to exploring exactly what Matariki means and how we can celebrate!

Writing: We are continuing to look closer at descriptive language this week. Room 3 has really enjoyed the different images we have used so far and I am super impressed with the interesting story writing being produced!

Reading: Well done Room 3! Everyone is making wonderful progress in their reading and reaching individual reading goals. I am so very proud of each and everyone of you! This week will see phonic word work and reading books coming home as per usual. Our phonic focus of the week is i_e (eg: kite).
Maths: We are proud to announce that our latest counting collection number is 334. This is a huge achievement! We continue with our small rotation maths groups for this week with a focus on numbers 0-100 and we will look at length as part of our measurement unit.

Reminders for the week:

  • Please remember to bring your Poem book back at the beginning of the week

  • Please remember your drink bottle, homework books and book bags everyday

  • Our days are getting colder - school jerseys and warm socks are needed!

  • Friday is the official first Matariki public holiday which means no school on this day. I hope you enjoy the day with your whānau!

Please don’t hesitate to contact me via Seesaw or email mswan@tearohaprimary.school.nz

Have an awesome week! 😊


Room 4 - Mrs Suzette Willis, Mrs Donna Taylor-Erutoe and Team

Have a great week everyone!


Room 5 - Miss Entwisle

Welcome to Week 8! This will be a short but busy week. 😊

Reading: We can’t believe that we are not even half way through our class novel Gruesome Twosome, and things are getting very exciting. What will happen next for poor Fatima and Cuthbert? With group reading, some students are forgetting to return their books. They need to return their books in order to get a new one.

Writing: It has been great working with a buddy to retell the story of the Three Little Pigs in our own words. We have been learning how to use the Google Drawing tools to insert and create illustrations to go with our stories.

Mathematics: Doubles are useful to know especially when learning the two times tables. We will have a focus on the 2’s 5’s and 10’s over the next two weeks and will be learning how to read, write and make solutions to answer multiplication problems.

Topic: We are looking forward to learning about Matariki and the importance of this special occasion.

Reminders / Online Learning - Homework

  • Our Spelling words and weekly poem and other home learning based tasks are available on Seesaw. This work is optional.

  • Students have free access to learning sites such as: Prodigy, Sumdog, Sunshine Classics, Epic! And Mathletics.

If you have any questions or concerns please feel free to contact Miss Entwisle via the school office: 078848803; email: mentwisle@tearohaprimary.school.nz or through the Seesaw message function.

Room 6 – Mrs Bankier

Mrs Bartram is teaching on Monday while I am working with our Maths Advisor for the school. She is continuing with our Wonder Rocket project.

Maths this week we are working on our dream bedrooms project. This involves learning about area, perimeter, multiplication, 3D, 2D and geometry. We are also working on creating our bedrooms in 3D on the computer.

Reading and writing this week are based around Matariki and Maori Myths and Legends.

Room 7 – Mrs Paul

This week all our activities will be based around Matariki.

  • In Reading: we will be looking at a variety of picture books and exploring the many different tales that are told. We will be focussing on comprehension and vocabulary. This will be a chance for the children to work on stories across all ability groups.
  • In Maths: We are starting Rotational Symmetery and we will be tying theis up with Matariki and rotating stars and maori patterns which will then complete a lovely display.

  • We will complete the beautiful art we started last week. It is always nice to study the workings of other artists, and have a go at their techniques ourselves. This involved us using the colour wheel and being aware of analogous colours.
  • In Spelling: We are looking at -ch and the 3 sounds this makes.

Thank you to all the parents who interact with us via Seesaw especially those who take the time to comment on the children’s work.

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Room 8 – Mrs McKenzie

Kia ora whānau of Room 8. As we celebrate Matariki this week, we will be incorporating this across our learning programme. The students will be completing some fun activities around the Matariki stars. This helps to build on top of wayfinding and star navigation knowledge we have been learning through our Topic Inquiry.

  • Reading groups have a sharp focus on certain comprehension skills based on the assessments last week such as inferring, evaluation and vocabulary.
  • In Maths, we continue with our division and multiplication knowledge. We will also look at some imagery, memorisation and coding.
  • Through Writing, we are investigating character writing. Students will learn to describe a character in great detail.
  • Mātua Barker will be in class on Wednesday, teaching Room 8 about Māori Myths and Legends and some much loved Art based activities.

A reminder that students must be reading at home daily, this helps with their confidence, learning a love for different genres, vocabulary knowledge, writing skills and reading comprehension. Please shout out if you need any suggestions on popular Year 6 aged books. We have a range of books in the classroom that students have been encouraged to take. It is a short week this week, so I am looking forward to the students being focused, and managing their time effectively to stay on task.

Have a wonderful week. cmckenzie@tearohaprimary.school.nz

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Room 9 – Whaea Armstrong and Mrs Gamble

Kia Ora Room 9 family and friends. After a week where many were away sick, we look forward to seeing our Room 9 tamariki back at school healthy and well. Just a reminder, if your child is unwell please keep them at home. By doing this we can hopefully slow the spread of these nasty bugs and keep everyone safe.

Ngā mihi o Matariki, te tau hou Māori. Happy Matariki!!

This week we celebrate Matariki. Our learning will be based around all things Matariki. We will be taking a cross curricular approach, celebrating Matariki through our core subjects, (reading, writing, maths) as well as through the arts (drama, singing and visual art). Please keep an eye on seesaw as we share with you the work we complete throughout the week.

  • Maths: This week we will continue to master our division strategies by looking at some of the strategies we have already covered at this term.
  • Testing: Due to large numbers of students away last week we will be finishing off our testing. We want to thank all Room 9 students for their patients during this time. It has been nice to see students taking on more responsibility for their own learning and self managing.
  • Matariki Breakfast: This Thursday we will come together as a school at our Matariki breakfast. We look forward to this celebration and hope to see everyone there. Please, if you haven’t completed the survey can you please do so. Many thanks.

Here's to another awesome week ahead - Kia tū, kia toa, kia mau - accept the challenge!

If you have any questions send us a message on Seesaw or email

aarmstrong@tearohaprimary.school.nz and lgmable@tearohaprimary.school.nz

Room 10 – Mrs B

Kia ora koutou,

Ka mahuta a Matariki I te pae, ka mahuta ō tatou tūmanako ki te tau

When Matariki rises above the horizon, our aspirations rise to the year ahead.

This week, we look forward to celebrating all things Matariki and so our learning programme will be different.Learning will involve completing a range of activities across the curriculum that align with each of the Matariki Stars and what they represent. We look forward to coming together as a school at our Matariki breakfast on Thursday - please make sure you have completed the survey so we know how many students to cater for. We hope that students who have been away last week are on the mend - there are certainly some nasty bugs about and some very sick Rm 10 students (on a couple of days last week, we only had 7 students at school!) Tēnā koa tiaki ia koe - please take care!

In Maths - we leave multiplication and division for a few days to problem solve using Matariki as our theme. This will involve algebra, geometry and lots of fun!

Matariki - activities will be assigned across the curriculum via a taskboard. Some of these will be shared via Seesaw. The challenge for students will be managing their time to ensure their work is completed. Kia tu, kia toa, kia mau - accept the challenge.

Looking forward to another awesome week.

Arohanui - Mrs B dp@tearohaprimary.school.nz

Year 7/8 Technology at Te Aroha College

Please make sure your child has shoes that cover their feet (NO SLIDES PLEASE) and long hair needs to be tied up. Roll call for the bus at 8.30am outside Rm 10. If your child is running late and misses the bus, please take them straight to the College.

Students 12+ years are to wear a mask on the bus as per Orange setting.


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Matariki Events Happening in Te Aroha

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We need these firms to keep our school cashflow and community relations going strong. They are generous to us which enables us to benefit your children so I would ask you look at the team of sponsors and where possible, use them as we all gain.

School Policies and Procedures

School Policies and Procedures

SchoolDocs is the tool we use for our school policies. These are kept updated with the SchoolDocs team ensuring legal and compliance matters are always up-to-date.

To access SchoolDocs simply :

1. Go to schooldocs.co.nz

2. Click Search for your school.

3. Start typing the school’s name and select it from the dropdown list.

4. Enter the community username tearohaprimary and password school

From there it is simply a matter of navigating to areas you wish to look at - enjoy the read.

School App, Facebook, Seesaw and our School Website

Please use these tools we provide - we use them to alert, inform and effectively communicate with parents.

Check it out - there is plenty for you to find out.

If in doubt please ask your child’s teacher as we will be using these platforms on a regular basis to keep our parent community informed and up to date.