Learning @ Kunyung Primary School

Learning for the 21st Century

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Term 3! WOO HOO! :)

Good Day Kunyung Families! :)

  I hope your holidays were everything your family wanted, or needed, them to be!

What bright, happy faces we were greeted with on Tuesday morning, and that included the parents! The children were so happy to see friends and teachers, and so switched on to start learning, that classrooms were alive with conversations, stories and questioning! (Whilst Monday was an extremely productive day for our staff……..work doesn’t feel right without children there!)

Our daily Reading, Writing and Maths routines are in full swing and our Inquiries have started with excitement and enthusiasm…………..children are natural inquirers as we know and the questions have been coming thick and fast already!

Our Preps are being scientists and inquiring into what makes things move! They will be looking at the BIG IDEA of CONSEQUENCES through experimenting with many different objects and discovering what makes them move and why? They will be learning the skills of being a scientist and I can’t wait to share with you their questions and findings over the next few weeks!

Our Juniors are inquiring into the processes that products go through and their BIG IDEA is CHANGE. They are visiting the YAKULT factory this week to see the origins of a product and the process these materials go through to become a useable product. The questions asked by our students at the factory have been amazing- get ready for many questions about how things are made parents!!

Our Middles started with a ‘bang’ also on Tuesday with the provocation ‘what ideas, beliefs, values are important to you’ and ‘if you had to express these to aliens how could you do it?’ Their inquiry is looking at how people express these things to others and how do we know this? The BIG IDEA is REFLECTION and what EVIDENCE can we find to support our thinking!

Our Seniors spent yesterday in Melbourne at the Immigration and Chinese Museums………their inquiry is focussed on immigration and the impact it has on individuals and communities. The students have been asked to put a box together that represents their families’ history including evidence of any movement or relocation they have been involved in.

The teachers also spent time this week inquiring! Our three Professional Learning Teams used Monday as a Project Day’. The Mathematics Team, Literacy Team and Transdisciplinary Team set goals for the day and, after expending the kind of energy you see on the Amazing Race, achieved many of the set goals. There is a common understanding at Kunyung about how we teach our students and Monday was ensuring all of our planning documents, big ideas and skill based continuums, for example, were consistent throughout the school and  all up to date and accessible. It was both a productive and enjoyable day with a clear purpose. In all rooms, where teams were working, it was ‘heads down’ and work, work, work!

As I said at the start of this article, it was ‘hit the ground running’ at Kunyung this week and, when I think about it, it’s only Thursday!!!!

Look forward to seeing as many of you as possible throughout the term!

Kim Jackson

Assistant Principal

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Learning @ Kunyung! Not the HOW but the WHAT……..

We have spent time looking at ‘How we teach @ Kunyung’………using an INQUIRY approach. Check!

We have spent time looking at how we PERSONALISE the learning for our students in the classroom. Check!

We have spent time looking at how we encourage our students to TAKE ACTION. Check!

We have spent time looking at the LEARNER PROFILE attributes we want to sdvelop and nurture in our students. Check!

So let’s look at the WHAT we teach the children that falls outside Literacy and Numeracy…………it’s called our Programme Of Inquiry! (Even though we still use Literacy and Numeracy when inquiring!)

It is organised into 6 Transdisciplinary Themes with each Year Level of students completing a Unit of Inquiry into each one of these 6 themes every year!POI 3

Are you still with me? :)

The 6 Themes are:

How we express ourselves (In our day- well my day as I’m a little older than most of you- it was our personal/social development)

Where we are in place and time (This was our History and Geography)

How the world works (Physical and Chemical Science)

How we express ourselves (The Arts)

How we organise ourselves (Social Studies)

How we share the planet (Environmental Science)

We have one inquiry into each of these themes every year which is our horizontal planning……………………..so our next job is to develop the ideas for these inquiries which forms the vertical development of the Programme of Inquiry. This should stop students learning about FORCES every year- for example!

The next step is to work out what the BIG IDEA might be for each Unit of Inquiry. It’s not good enough in our school, to say we are going to be ‘doing GOLD’ in Year 6 for example! We don’t just want our children finding out facts and, gaining knowledge, about GOLD………………a better BIG IDEA (Which we call a central idea) might be ‘We learn about our present by looking at past events that shaped us’…..this would give students a chance to look at how events in the past have affected us today- one of which might be the GOLD RUSH and it’s impact on multicultural Australia. This would NOT be a Prep Unit of Inquiry but if the Preps started with a Unit about their own families and the Juniors started to look into the histories in our community and the Middles looked into early explorers- you can easily see how these Where we are in Place and Time Units evolve into the Senior one.

This may be a messy example but it highlights the need for us to plan out our curriculum. We also take into account:

  • The Australian Curriculum outcomes (We audit our Programme of Inquiry against AusVELS. We are currently doing just that!)
  • Student questions and interests that might help shape the unit (There’s no point us decding everything when, given the opportunity, students will ask questions that lead them to the same understanding!)

So….are we organised with our curriculum? Absolutely….just have a look in our office area to see the Whole School Programme of Inquiry….I’ll also try to put a copy onto the BLOG!

Over the next 6 weeks we will ‘pull apart’ each Transdisciplinary Theme and see what it really means or can mean!

When people say to you things like ‘Children aren’t taught history and geography anymore’, ‘Science is nowhere to be seen in schools’, well that’s actually not true BUT instead of filling our children’s heads with what knowledge we think they should possess, we provide a BIG IDEA that they can inquire into with teacher guidance, learn a lot from and have the added benefit of developing communication, research, social and thinking skills at the same time- that’s something I wish I had had growing up!

In conclusion (My SO WHAT!)………….

  • Our students are involved in 6 Units of Inquiry each year that support them to be learners who demonstrate the Attributes of the Learner profile
  • Each one of these 6 Units of Inquiry are centred around one of the 6 Transdisciplinary Themes (See above).
  • Each Unit of Inquiry has a BIG or CENTRAL IDEA
  • Asking questions, and discussing, at home the latest Unit of Inquiry will support the understanding of the central idea.
  • The knowledge gained when inquiring into a Unit of Inquiry doesn’t have to be the same for all students- it’s the understanding of the transferrable concept and central idea that is more important!

Next time we pull apart ‘Who we are!’ :)

 

 

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Living the Learner Profile @ Kunyung!

GLilyood Day Kunyung Families!

You know……..when you try to explain to people that schools are busy places…..it?s hard to put into words just exactly what can be going on at the same time in the one school!

If it’s the Learner Profile we are trying to develop in each and every one of our students (Remembering that the attributes of the Learner Profile include being: Thinkers, courageous, inquirers, balanced, reflective, knowledgeable, principled and caring!) then please have a look at what’s been going on @ Kunyung this week AND see how many Learner Profile Attributes are in Action……Oh! and add to the following our Student Led Tours, Cross Country and Interschool Sport……WOW!

CURRENT UNITS OF INQUIRY! :)

Preps-

People use symbols to be expressive and to communicate.

Some Prep Questions about their Unit of Inquiry!

‘What do signs do?’

‘How do signs work?’

‘Where else can I find these signs?’

‘Does Jeff use a sign at the crossing?’

‘What would happen if we didn’t have signs?’

Juniors-

People recognise important events through celebrations and traditions.

‘We had lots of questions about celebrations all over the world. We wrote down our questions. We talked about our questions with our friends and our mums and dads. Now we are making a celebration in our classroom. We are sharing what we find out with our friends. We recognise important events with celebrations and traditions. Some examples are Christmas, Birthdays, Anzac Day, and New babies being born. (April and Paul)

Middles-

Technology impacts on the world of work and leisure.

We asked lots of questions and our teachers helped us to make our ‘skinny’ questions a bit ‘fatter’.

Once we had our questions we used books, computers, our friends, teachers and parents to help find some information to help answer our questions.

Now we are going to share our learning with our class in any way we choose. We are doing a 2 minute talk. (Mira and Ben)

Seniors-

Governmental systems and decisions can promote or deny equal opportunities and social justice.

To find out how Governments make decisions and the impact of these decisions we chose small groups and formed our party! We were asked what we would do if we were in charge of the school. We worked in teams to make decisions and realised it’s not that easy to all agree. We are presenting our policies to the other Year 6 Students and then analysing how each of our policies promoted or denied equal opportunity and social justice! We will be reflecting on how we worked as a team as well as the decisions we made. (Aria and Megan)Action

 

Dear Kunyung Parentssail_logo mock up

Could you be so kind as to pick up a few extra pens and pencils when you are out shopping to donate towards The Sail Programme.

The Sail Programme is where Refugee children are assisted with their learning so as you can imagine lots of pens and pencils are needed.

There will be a donation box in the office.

Thank you

From Michaela (Year 6)

On behalf of The KEAST and ACTION Teams

Nude Food 2

Nude Food is here again so please could you put foods that don?t require wrappings in your children?s lunch boxes. This will help our environment heaps! Nude Food will be every Wednesday. On Fridays we will show a tally of the winning class and they will receive an amazing trophy to keep for the week.

(Thanks to Mr Eckerman for helping us to design our Nude Food Poster)

From the KEAST and ACTION Teams

NUTRITION PRESENTATION ;) Let's PAck Lunch

Parents from Kunyung and surrounding Kindergartens attended an informative and interestingly presented session on packing a healthy lunch for your children! The session was run by a Kunyung Parent, Alison Miles, who is also a qualified dietician (Bachelor of Science) who has spent many years working with Elite Athletes focussing on their diets and eating habits. The session was well attended and all parents who participated loved the practical tips shared by Alison and the ideas that are actually manageable by the ?normal? parent packing a daily lunch!

Many Thanks Alison and we are already working on a follow up session! Stay Tuned!

Student Leadership

PUBLIC SPEAKING

Over the past 2 weeks I have had the privilege of working with all the Senior School Students on developing their Public Speaking skills. We worked through ‘Mrs Jackson’s 10 Public Speaking Tips’ and then every student had to write and give a 30 second presentation using these tips! The students were awesome and overcome ‘butterflies in the tummy’ to deliver their speeches!

Year 5 Aspirant Leaders Day

Last Monday Mrs Jay and 8 Year 5 Students attending Mt Eliza Secondary College for an Aspirant Leaders Day with other Local Primary Schools. The children focussed on developing their Leadership Skills and came back to school ready to implement those skills straight away! 

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Inquiry @ Kunyung!

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Taking Action Part 2!

Taking ACtion 

 

You must be the change you want to see in the world.’
- Mahatma Gandhi

Good Day Kunyung!

Yes! This is the same heading as last week!! No….I’m NOT running out of ideas!

Last week I talked about the importance of taking action in the community………I also tried to highlight the different ways that action can be taken!

Well…………this week I wanted to highlight some examples of action being taken around the school as we speak!

Students in JBK share learning that they do at home- EVERYDAY!! Walking through their classroom is a delight, listening to children explain work they have done at home as a result of what they have done in class!

Mums have worked tirelessly this week organising the Mother’s Day Stall- all for the benefit of the Kunyung children (Their mums!) and the school!

We have a team of dedicated parents who are meeting regularly to put in place some actions that will support Kunyung to be a healthier place to be! (Please contact me if you are interested in joining this group! Everyone is welcome!)

There are so many other wonderful examples of Taking Action in the school and, as you know, I could go on and on and on using real examples BUT it is now time to hand over my newsletter article to the Student Action Team…………..take it away team!!!!

Hi Everyone

I’m Aria and I am one of the 11 Action Leaders at Kunyung. I would love to announce that we have got another fabulous action team this year! WE work with Mr Walker, Mrs Howard and Mrs Jay!

We will show you our faces in the next newsletter…….stay tuned!

What is the Action Team?

The action team is a group of 11 people who want to take action, and help others to take action, around our community; we are very excited to be taking action.

Some of the ideas we have discussed so far include:

Trying to get a community grant to build a friendship seat in the school, having a day a week for nude food, re building our kitchen garden and then using our own food for the canteen, raising awareness and money and items for programs like the Sail Program so much more!

Please look out in the newsletter for how we are going! We want to help other children in the school to join in!

LOOK AT THIS ACTION!

We are very proud to announce Alfie in PB to be our first Prep to take a step of action!Alfie

Alfie was driving to school with his mum when he saw a little dog sitting on the side of Nepean Highway. The next day he found the same dog sitting just near his house, Alfie decided to take action and tell his mum to take the dog to the vet. She took the dog to the vet and now all thanks to Alfie the dog is happy and safe.

Thank you and congratulations Alfie for taking action.

 

Kimberly Jackson                   Aria

Assistant Principal                           Action Team Leader

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Taking Action! :)