Newsletter Week 8 Term 1

Sawyers Bay School 24th March 2022


Kia ora Whanau,

Another week of swimming has really given our children a great boost in their abilities. We have been so pleased to see the progress. It was even more exciting to see this progress put into practice on Wednesday when we run our Flippa Ball session for the swimming block. For those who haven’t heard of Flippa Ball, it is the kid-sized version of water polo. It is always the kids favourite session and by far the loudest session!

I think that a short week has come at the exact right time for us this week. Swimming is an extremely tiring fortnight for our kids, and we have once again seen high levels of absences. I think our kids really benefited from an extra day off on Monday.

As you will be no doubt aware, there have been recent changes announced in terms of COVID planning and public health responses. We do try very hard to limit the number of notifications and information that we send you, particularly around COVID. We will therefore be carrying on in the exact same manner for now until we have had the time to really dissect how these recent changes will be best implemented within our setting, with the goals continuing to be to protect our most vulnerable, keep all of our kids as well as possible, and the school running. We would therefore ask for your patience once again. This allows us to make one set of changes that should see us right for some time.

Ka mihi nui,

Gareth Swete

Upcoming Events

  • Good Friday - Friday 15th April

Canterbury Exams - Year 5 & 6

The Great Kiwi Canterbury Competition is taking place again this year. Competitions are open for Year 5 & 6 students in English, Maths and Science.

If your child has not already brought home a notice and you would like them to participate please come and see Miss Laing for a notice. (These are not compulsory.)

For more information head to -


We are all really enjoying our swimming lessons. Everyone is so positive, happy, excited, energetic and giving an amazing effort in each lesson. Today we learned the skills needed to play Flipper Ball. Tremendous fun and lots of goals were scored!

As part of learning about our kura environment, we have identified all of our favourite parts of our wonderful kura. We then extended this using our creative writing skills and thought of what we would LIKE to have in our school environment if we were to wish for anything we could. The responses and illustrations were delightful!

“I wish for a fish tank with blue fish at school” By Riley.

“I want a Mum and Dad dog with puppies, to live at school” By Alexie.

“I want a bouncy castle that is purple, outside our class” By Olivia.

During our Kelly Sports session, we learned two new games which were designed to develop our skills in throwing and catching - to ourselves, or to a teammate. Even during the session, we got more accurate with each throw. It is so exciting to watch!

Our phonics focus this week was the sound “c”. We listened to the story of The Very Hungry Caterpillar, then responded to it with some super artwork. We also used our tracing, cutting and pasting skills to create a caterpillar using as many circles as we could cut out. These look fabulous.

We are learning about measurement, and ordering things from the tallest to the shortest, or the shortest to the tallest. Today’s activity was about the Gingerbread Man. We had Gingerbread people of a variety of heights and we carefully cut them out then pasted them in order of height.

Report by Mrs Campbell

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This week I have really enjoyed swimming because I like learning the new things that keep me safe in the water. (Mele)

I have enjoyed learning arm circles at swimming because it is fun and it helps me go faster and further in the water. (Ayla)

I am enjoying learning about our passion projects, they are fun. I liked doing the writing and asking questions and using the special pens to publish my work. (Isaac)

I liked playing Kelly Sports this week. I enjoyed having a warm up before playing the games. (Ava)

Swimming has been fun, I liked doing water polo at swimming lessons. (Ben)

I liked swimming and I liked Water Polo. (Herepo)

I liked teaching your monster to read on the ipads (Elma)

Report by Mrs Brewer

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This week is really flying by with having Monday off! We really enjoyed reconnecting with lots of our classmates on Tuesday as many returned back to school after having a week or two off for various reasons. We are seeing HUGE development in swimming - it is really quite exciting watching the children challenge themselves and achieve their goals. On Wednesday we got to put these skills into action in a game of flipperball. What a great way to practice our skills, have fun and learn a new sport! In Maths we learnt a new game - Numble. We rolled a die 3 times to give us the digits 6,2,5. We were then challenged with the mission to make as many sums using only these three digits. Once the children could prove each sum, they then wrote it in the book and crossed off the number on our number chart. We managed to cross off 22 numbers this week and will see if we can get even more next week. It was great to hear all the mathematical language flying around the room as children worked individually, in pairs or threes. Below is a picture of all the sums we managed to make. I wonder if you can find any more?

Report by Mrs Swete

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On Thursday afternoon we had Sasha the Geoeducator from Waitaki Whitestone Geopark have a zoom call with us. We learnt that limestone is found all around the world and is made up of dead creatures that fell to the bottom of the ocean. The limestone we were given was from Parkside Quarries. They cut huge slabs and each one is inspected as it is cut to see if there are any fossil bones sticking out of it. They have found several different species of sea creatures, including a penguin which was 130cm tall. We talked about the Plesiosaur that was found at Shag Point. There is currently still a large thigh bone protruding out of the cliff. After the zoom we proceeded to measure all students to see what 130cm looked like. We decided that a Tate or Mordecai even coming towards you would be pretty scary. We weren't sure if these ones still shuffled like modern day ones.

We started digging into the fossils on Friday as soon as the students arrived as there was much anticipation! Mac was our resident expert as he has had experience in digging similar ones out. We had four students working at one time under supervision because we were digging with a contraption that looked like a handle with a nail inserted in it backwards! We initially found different types of 25 million year old shells that looked like they had been placed there yesterday. Ally found the first of the bones which took a lot of time to dig out. Mr Swete brought us a microscope in and we were blown away by the different colours that we couldn't see with the naked eye; green and loads of black specs. We spent the whole day digging but we didn't finish getting them all out. It was a fantastic experience which created loads of discussion, predicting, questioning and answers about fossils.

Report by Mrs Smith


It was a short week this week but of course we still try and get the same amount done!

We have finished swimming this week and the children have done a great job in the pool. It was super fun to have another Flipper Ball session this week too.

We have each completed our own Statistical Investigation, surveying our class or some of us even the whole school! We have found out some pretty cool information like how many children are in each class at SBS (and then the total number of students at school), how long it took each member of our class to eat a raspberry drop, what our favourite ice cream flavours and what our favourite native birds are, just to name a few. The children did very well managing themselves to complete their investigations, using all their new learning and following the Statistical Enquiry Cycle and then to display their findings on a poster.

We had another Kelly Sports session this week where we practised our throwing and catching skills. We played lots of competitive games where we had to communicate and collaborate with our team mates. We are looking forward to applying all the learning we have done with Kelly Sports this term into a game of Handball in Week 10.

Report by Miss Laing

Tāne Mahuta

Kia ora all! Last week in assembly it was great to be able to share our “Layers of Me” Self Portraits with the other classes in the school over Zoom. Because we got to share these with the school - we really wanted to share them with you also. We are very proud of our portraits this year and put a lot of hard work into these over the past couple of weeks. For these portraits - we followed a concept called “Layers of Me” - this looked, at comparing different identity layers with the different layers of an apple. The skin represented the ‘outside’ what you can physically see when you look at us, how we look, the colour of our eyes and our hair etc. and what we like to wear. The next layer, the flesh of the apple, looked at ‘what we do’ - our hobbies, interests and activities that we enjoy. The final layer was the core of the apple, and this layer got us to dig a little deeper and think about our values, the things that are important to us - such as our families and showing respect. To create these portraits the ‘skin’ of the apple was us in the foreground, and the background of our image was a ‘room’ we created. This room had in it all of our things we liked to do symbolised by objects (e.g. dancing shoes, rugby posts) as well as our values which were also symbolised by objects and images that we placed in our ‘room’.

Thank you for taking the time to read about our self portraits for this year! All of our hard work paid off as we are very happy with our finished products. Hopefully one day soon, you’ll be able to pop into the class for a look.

Report by Miss Tenci

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Sports News

This Week's results:


SBS Villa 2-5 L POD Ava M.

SBS Spurs 1-1 POD Sylas

SBS Gunners defaulted to


SBS Incredible 1-2 L POD Liam M. & Ava M.

SBS Awesome defaulted to

Community Notices

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