St Joseph's Primary School Wingham
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Church Cresent
Wingham NSW 2429

Phone: 02 6553 4774

5 April 2019

Newsletter Articles

Principal’s Report

Dear Parents,

Colour Explosion!

Congratulations to all the students who took part in our school’s Cross Country Carnival today. My thanks to Mark Knoke for organising and coordinating the event and to all our parent helpers. Congratulations to all the students who took part in our school’s Cross Country Carnival today. My thanks to Mark Knoke for organising and coordinating the event and to all our parent helpers – Peter & Anna Macmillan, Ann McDermott, Don Bell and Brad Campbell. I am sure that there were plenty of personal bests on the course.

The following students placed 1st in each age group.  They will,  together with 2nd & 3rd placegetters, will progress to the Diocesan Cross Country Carnival carnival on Tuesday 7 May 2019 at Maitland Walka Water Works.

8 Girls

Penny Van Vliet

8 Boys

Sam Raison

9 Girls

Charlotte Barry

9 Boys

Harry Macmillan

10 Girls

Georgia Hartley

10 Boys

Jose McDermott

11 Girls

Emma Letheren

11 Boys

Jake Guppy

12 Girls

Celeste McDermott

12 Boys

Zaylon Proctor

Our Parents & Friends Association have been busily planning the next big fundraiser – Colour Explosion Fun Run planned for next Friday 12 April. There is still plenty of time for our kids to raise funds through sponsorship of the event.

A big ‘thank you’ also to parents for taking part in our Parent-Teacher interview process. The teachers loved being able to share information about your child’s growth and progress so far this term.

St Joseph's new principal, Melissa Hunt has been keen to learn all she can about our school community before she officially takes over from the beginning of Term 2. Mel has been engaged in a hand-over process with myself and other key staff and has been visiting classrooms and orienting herself to the site over the last two weeks.

We hope parents and family members are able to join us for our Holy Week liturgy on Friday of next week (please note change from previous calendar). I thank the students and teachers in advance for the care they always take in giving expression to this great faith story. We have had to make some changes to the school calendar and normal end-of-term events owing to a few key staff attending PD courses and the P & F Colour Run. NB: There will be no Easter Hat Parade this year.

Friday 12 April 2019


Holy Week Liturgy, school hall


Lunch (meal deal)


Colour Fun Run in Central Park – Colour Explosion!

As we wind down to the end of term, I would like to thank everyone for their support of this school over the past 10 weeks. I also thank the school staff. We have an amazing and talented group of professionals who really care about what they do. I feel very grateful for the opportunity to share Term 1 with you all

Many blessings for the holiday season and for what is a very bright future for Joeys.

Yours sincerely,
Justin Hutchens

Quote of the Week

Love ought to manifest itself by deeds more than by words. – St Ignatius Loyola

Making Jesus RealValue of the week

Week 11 – Attitudes are Contagious

School News

Prime Minister Award

‘ Being a steward of creation’, ‘trying your best’, ‘speaking with kindness’ and ‘ being a responsible learner’ are some of the qualities that teachers consider when awarding ‘Prime Minister’ at our weekly assembly. It is an acknowledgement of the student’s efforts and they have the privilege of wearing the badge with honour, of suggesting a focus the school can work on, award gotchas to other students at lunch time as well as earning gotchas for themselves. Congratulations to Dakota Thorburn.

Year 6 camp to Sydney

Last Wednesday Year 6 travelled by coach to Sydney for our annual school camp. We visited some really exciting places around Sydney like the Aquarium, Taronga Zoo, Chinatown, and the Sydney Tower Eye. We caught the ferry from Circular Quay and sailed passed the Opera House and the Harbour Bridge. It was really beautiful in the morning sunshine. The bird show and Seal show were really enjoyable and educational as we learnt a lot of new things. We stayed in Haymarket right in the centre of Sydney. The accommodation was really nice. We loved the food – a big yummy buffet breakfast, Chinatown and fisn n chips on Bondi Beach. Shopping at Paddy’s and Smiggle Store was great too. ‘Thank you’ to Mrs Cleaver, Mrs McEwen and Mr Stepowikow for looking after us so well.

Year 3 Happenings

Year 3 has had a busy start to 2019. The students have embraced the Primary system by being exposed to a range of new experiences including rotational math groups, NAPLAN rehearsals and top field privileges.

This terms' English focus has centred around the theme of sustainability. Children have studied the text 'The Lorax' by Dr Seuss and 'Where the Forest Meets the Sea' by Jeannie Baker. It has been amazing to see how students connect ideas of sustainability with other key learning areas such as History and Science.

In writing we are looking at a range of grammatical features including nouns, verbs and adjectives. Our writing focus has centred around persuasive writing. We are working on improving structure of the text as well as justifying opinions with evidence.

In mathematics, students are really enjoying the rotational math groups that Primary school operate weekly from Wednesday to Friday. Students have also enjoyed hands on math activities such as creating paper planes and measuring the distance that they travel as well as measuring each others height and mass.

In week nine, year 3 had their NAPLAN trial and I am happy to report the practice session went well. Students completed the trial on the library's new laptops. The process went smoothly particularly with the improved technology. We are set and prepared for next terms' NAPLAN assessment. A big thank you to Mr Bushtmann for his assistance with setting up.

In Art students are using colour blending effect to create colour blends, perspective effects and shadowing.

After School Art Classes @ Joey’s

Last week, each student received information regarding After School Art Classes starting in Term 2 being offered by parent, Mrs Ann McDermott. Please see Mary if you would like a copy or download the following.

School Calendar of Events

Week 10

Fri April 5

School Cross country carnival

Week 11

Fri April 12

Holy Week liturgy 10:30am
Colour Run 12:40pm
Term 1 closes for students

Term 2 Week 1

Mon April 29

Students return

Tues April 30

School ANZAC service 11:00am

Colour Fun Run reminders:

  • Teachers will accompany the students to Central Park following lunch
  • At 12:30pm there will be walk-through of the obstacle course
  • At 1:40pm the run begins with each class sent off one at a time. They may run or walk and rest as needed.
  • Students to wear/purchase a cheap white T-Shirt for the event

  • Those students travelling home by bus may bring a change of clothes
  • Information regarding a Meal Deal lunch to come home soon
  • We will have a finale gathering for a colour cloud at the end of the event (great photo opportunity)
  • All students will receive an ice block and certificate on completion
  • At the conclusion of the event (1:20pm?) parents may take their children after signing-out with their teacher
  • All other students will return to school for the remainder of the day.

Enrolments 2020:

Most parents are aware the enrolment period opened in Catholic Schools Week. As the term draws to a close I ask any parent who has a child or knows of a child who would like to enrol at St Joseph’s to contact the school immediately so that we can process these applications


As you are no doubt aware, ANZAC Day March Thursday April 25 fall within the second week of the school holidays this year. We would like to encourage as many students as possible to still come and participate in the march with their school. The students are asked to assemble outside the church this year at 8:45 am. Please wear summer school uniform and don’t forget your hat!


Lent is a time of preparation. It should not be all gloomy but rather a time to reach out for God in new ways. In some ways it is a type of pilgrimage. Pilgrims usually travel long distances where there is both an external and interior journey. This serious inner reflection makes it different to ordinary travel or tourism. The journey is the difficult and delightful process by which truth can be attained.

Tips to Improve Reading Comprehension

Once reading at school changes from “learning to read” to “reading to learn”, a student’s comprehension of what they are reading becomes crucial. The following tips are strategies teachers use and are useful for parents to utilise at home in regards to improving the reading comprehension of their child.


Encourage them to imagine what they are hearing whether they are reading or being read to. Can they tell you what they have visualised? How well can they describe what they see?


Discuss the different structures of books. For example, a text book is divided into chapters with headings, and uses bold text and often includes summaries. A fiction book includes the Who, What, When, Where and Why.


Encourage them to use post-it notes or mind maps to highlight main points when reading. This will make studying easier and help them to sift through the information that is not needed.


Regularly talk about what they are reading. Can they tell you about it? How much can they remember? Is it sequential? Practice sequencing comics/instructions/ stories/etc to build this skill.


Increase their vocabulary through exposure. The more they read the more words they are exposed to. Define any new words before reading - decode them, say them, write them, use them in a sentence, etc, to build familiarity and understanding before they read it in a text/book.

Newsletter Excerpt from Ten Tips to Improve Reading Comprehension

Reflection for Parents: Getting the screen time balance right!

I am always getting asked, ‘How much screentime should I allow my child?’
Here’s the thing. I don’t believe there is a magic number of hours a child should be ‘allowed’ or ‘not allowed’ screentime. There are many other more pertinent questions we should be asking about our kids’ screentime, aside from simply ‘how much?’.

These are just some of the things we should be looking at when it comes to our kids’ use of their screens. Which is not to say that the amount of time spent on screens is irrelevant. It is still valid to be concerned about how much time screens are consuming of your children’s days. To help alleviate some of the concerns you may have, and to put some strategies in place, here are two things you can focus on when it comes to your kids and screentime.

1. Look at the individual child

How is your particular child coping? Each child is different. A boundary that works for one child may not work for another. Is your child in control of their screen use? Are they coming to the dinner table without a fight? Are they sleeping, eating, keeping up with friends?

Conversely, are they showing signs of not being in control? If so then you may have to look at better ways to manage their time. Discuss the issue with your child and explain why they need better balance. Not because the technology is bad per say, but because they need to ensure there is enough time left in their day for all the other activities that are needed for their growth, development and wellbeing.

2. Are all of their other needs being met? Are they getting enough:

Sleep time: It’s super important that kids are getting a good night’s sleep. Keeping devices out of the bedroom when they are young, and avoiding the screens for at least an hour before bed, helps ensure their sleep needs are met.

Bored time: Today’s kids don’t tend to get as much time to be bored as kids used to. It is an important skill to be able to fill in their time themselves. Bored time promotes creative play and thinking as kids are forced to come up with other ways to amuse themselves.

Connection time: Face-to-face interaction is obviously crucial for children’s social and emotional development and wellbeing. Time with friends, siblings and family members must always be a priority. Learning to engage, problem solve and read body language and facial expressions are all crucial skills that need real-life time and experience to develop.

Active time: A healthy body and mind requires activity and movement. Kids still love to get out and play. However, some may need a bit more encouragement to remind them.

Downtime: Whilst playing games may be described by many kids as their downtime (and yes, there is some validity to this argument) kids also need downtime that involves doing very little. It is in these moments of reflection, of thinking and of pondering, that our ideas come to us and our creativity for other activities flows.

Focus time: There are times of the day when all of us need to be focused on other tasks. These may be homework, chores, reading a book or the newspaper, building something or making something. There needs to be time in kids’ days where they are able to focus solely on a task without the distractions of a screen.

Mealtime: Getting plenty of good food is of course very important to kids’ wellbeing. But it’s not just about the food. Sitting at the table with parents, siblings or others, focusing on enjoying a meal together without the need of a screen, helps children to develop good habits while they are young which they can carry into the future.

Obviously there will be times when all these needs are not completely balanced. There will be periods when screens are used more often and times when one or more valuable needs is neglected. But if we can use this as a guide and aim to fit the many key experiences our kids need into each day, we are much more likely to ensure our kids grow up with a healthy respect for their screens and a healthy respect for the many areas of their life that need to be nurtured.

Author: Martine Oglethorpe
Source: Parenting Ideas

Parents & Friends Association

Parents & Friends Association:

Our next meeting is on Monday 20 May 2019 at 5:00pm.

Everyone knows that a good school is supported by a strong, vibrant, engaged parent body. Please think about joining our P & F so that you can make a real difference to the educational experiences we can provide for our students.

Be involved - be active - support your school!

Canteen News

Term 1 Roster



April 12

Lucy Robinson
Alissa Healy

Happy Birthday Wishes!

Hallie Forbes and Colebee Hollis turned 5; Kaii Macmillan turned 6; William Robinson turns 7; Maharlia Minns turns 9; Sam Raison turns 8; Dillon McGreal turns 10; Rose Nattress, Emma Letheren and Gabbie Swierczynski all turn 11.

Community News