Learning @ Kunyung Primary School

Learning for the 21st Century

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Writing – A common question: So what is a Recount?

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Child writingParents often ask about writing genres so they can understand what their child is talking about at home. Many parents weren’t taught how to write like their children are!

Recounts have their own purpose and structure. Your child might talk about connecting words. Do you know what they are?

Follow the above link to an excellent paper on Recount writing for primary students.

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Seniors’ Exhibition! :)

This week Mrs Jackson has handed over her Assistant Principal’s Report to us! Science

This has given us the chance to tell the Whole School Community about our Senior School Exhibition and the chance to complete a piece of authentic writing………if you are interested in helping out with our Exhibition please contact Mrs Jackson! jackson.kim.k@edumail.vic.gov.au

The Year 5 and 6’s are 3 weeks into their inquiry, based on ‘How the world works’. This inquiry will include sharing the ‘Exhibition’ with the rest of the school community- Exciting!!!

Central Idea

Science provides a lens through which to look at the world.

Lines of Inquiry

People apply their understanding of science to solve problems and meet needs.

Scientific and technological advances have an impact on society and the environment.

Theories can be debated- science doesn’t always mean it to be true. Theory/evidence/level of truth.

The natural world has systems and laws to maintain balance.

 

 

 

So far, we have picked an area of science of interest to us. To help us choose this area of interest we have been provoked to get our brains up to date with science, such as thinking routines, reading articles, brainstorms on the different branches of science, using our 5 senses and Mathsexperiments.  We have been turning our daily school routine into a series of different activities that link to the Exhibition, eg. Instead of starting the day with reading about just anything, we have been bringing in articles about how the world works to read and in maths we have been graphing data.

 

EXHIBITION PROCESS

1.       Like any other task, we start the exhibition with planning.

2.       After planning, we will focus and prepare our topic

3.       Third, we will start to find information.Process

4.       Next, we will use our information

5.       After that, evaluation (assessing)

6.       Next, synthesis- adding new knowledge to what you already know to broaden your mind

7.       Finally, taking action, what can you do to help? We also use the “So what” statement, how can you use this data to help you with research or doing something to help

 

WHAT OUR PREVIOUS EXHIBITIONS HAVE LOOKED LIKE

Every exhibition is different to the previous one in its own way. Last year, it was an oral presentation, based on the inequity throughout the world. In 2013, it was more of a visual presentation, based on how we express our selves.

 

 

This week we have started choosing our topics and these are a few of the steps we had to go through first. We had to pick our own key concepts to give us a guide for our exhibition and our own lines of inquiry as well.

All senior students have been working so hard on their personal inquiry. We give them all thumbs up for working well and co-operatively!

 

 

By: Poppy, Freya, Holly, Isobelle and Alex

 

 

Acting Assistant Principals for this newsletter! 

 

 

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Good Day Kunyung! ;)

PYP Over view for Parents

START OF THE YEAR!download (1)

Classrooms are off and running for 2015! Teachers and students have certainly displayed the skills of self-management and organisation to have themselves so well prepared to learn………..

In most schools the start of the year is calm and smooth………..we are both of these, for sure, BUT what I love about Kunyung at the moment, is the children’s readiness and enthusiasm to learn!! It’s as if they have picked straight back up from where they were at the end of last year! Teachers have commented on how quickly they have been able to settle into class routines and start teaching!!! The students are setting the pace…..gotta love that!

UNITS OF INQUIRY

Each Year level completes 6 Units of Inquiry throughout the year. Each Unit of Inquiry has a focus on a Transdisciplinary Theme. Below is the focus for each Unit of Inquiry to start the year. If you would like to contribute to any of these in any way- please contact me at school!

You may notice below that the SENIORS are undertaking their ‘EXHIBTION’ this term! Please stay tuned for student reporting on their progress in future newsletters! If you have a passion for science please contact me and I know the senior teachers and students would love your input!

Year Level Theme Central Idea An inquiry into
PREPS  ‘How we organise ourselves’   People play different roles in the communities to which they belong What a community isRoles and responsibilities of people in our communitiesHow communities are organised and change to meet people’s needs
JUNIORS  ‘Who we are’  People’s relationships with each other can have an impact on wellbeing  How we develop relationshipsHow relationships affect usRoles and behaviours within relationships
MIDDLES ‘Who we are’ Understanding different ways of learning enables people to respond to their own learning needs as well as those of others. Learning communities/collaborationRelationshipsHow people construct meaningDifferent learning styles
SENIORS ‘How the world works’

THE EXHIBITION

 

PYP EVALUATION

Every 5 years all International Baccalaureate schools undertake an Evaluation process. Our 

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Evaluation is August 10-12 this year! We want to involve as many members of our school community as we possibly can…..please stay tuned for parent forums coming up! J

Cheers and have a wonderful week!

SPEAKING OF PYP………..please find attached a parent copy of ‘The Written curriculum’ @ Kunyung…………..this document outlines all of the things we want our children to learn………it supports them to be Internationally minded!

Kim Jackson

Assistant Principal

PYP Coordinator

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Welcome Back to School for 2015!

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Good Day Kunyung Families! :)
Welcome back to school for 2015!! We trust you have had/are having a wonderful time with your families over the holiday break.I’m sure there will be many stories told in classrooms about holiday adventures!
The staff have been working hard (as well as recharging their batteries!) over the break to prepare their classrooms and themselves for the exciting year ahead!
We look forward to seeing our students (Years 1-6) bright eyed and bushy tailed on Thursday 29th January and our gorgeous Preps on Monday 2nd February!
imagesWe will NOT be having an Assembly this coming Friday but will commence our communication through Skoolbag App, the newsletter and email during the first week back so everyone feels ‘up to date’ with the hectic start to the year!
Improving and refining our communication is a goal for 2015 so please keep your suggestions coming! :)

Let’s work together to make 2015 great! ;)

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Curriculum Update! :)

Good Day Kunyung! :)Inquiry

This fortnight has been another typical Kunyung fortnight……………learning, learning, learning and some more learning- and that was just the teachers!!

Through some wonderful life experiences and through some explicit, ‘sense of urgency’ teaching and learning we are ‘humming’ along in more ways than one……………..we also received our Staff School Survey results back (which Elaine has outlined in her report!) and I have outlined two of our most positive areas- even though they were all great!

COLLECTIVE EFFICACY and RESPONSIBILITY………say what?

Our Staff School Survey results showed that our staff strongly believe we have a high amount of collective efficacy at Kunyung- that we all have a responsibility for the planning, teaching and assessment of all students in our teams…..what does that actually look like? Here are some examples…..

  • Every week staff bring their class Student Data to our planning meetings- we look at this maths and reading data and discuss what teaching needs to be the focus for the following week, how we can move students further along in their learning and how far are they away from reaching their next benchmark (how can we get them there?). We discuss what direction the students want to take in our Unit of Inquiry and what are we actually looking for in our students to be able to say ‘Yep, they understand that!’
  • Teachers have been completing assessments that will inform end of year school reports and part of that process has been ‘moderating’ student work. At our weekly collaborative planning meetings, teachers have brought in samples of student writing to share, ask questions about and decide on a level as a team. We have discussed maths outcomes and reading levels- trying to share our collective experience, understanding and thoughts. Our aim has been to give every student the best possible opportunity to demonstrate their learning before a final assessment is made!

TRUST IN PARENTS & STUDENTS

InquireAnother area of high scoring was the trust our staff have in you as parents AND the faith we have in our students’ ability to learn! How positive is that!!! It matches the high result from the Parent Opinion Survey that showed the high level of trust you have in our staff!

We thought that perhaps the work we are putting into opening up communication channels (Skoolbag app, newsletter, blog, diaries) between home and school, in regard to the ‘learning’ and events happening around the school, that parents have more of an idea about what is being learnt at school and how best to support their children. Our Staff have TRUST in you guys….what a compliment to you!!!!

Our staff also have confidence in your children’s ability to learn! Our work on developing a Visible Learning Culture where not only do teachers know What is being learnt, How best will it be learnt and How will we know what has been learnt BUT your children know the answers to these questions as well!!!! Our staff know that not all students are working at the same level (In fact our teachers know EXACTLY where your children are and so do they!!) but they have confidence that your children are al capable of learning and to be the best they can be…………

Just wanted to further reinforce two of the many positive things our staff feel about our school………..

Meanwhile in other news……..

Our Preps have been observing their beans growing and, acting as custodians, as they learn about Sharing our Planet through the eyes of an environmental scientist! Reading and writing is starting to ‘take off’ and the Prep Swimming Program has begun!!!!! Excitement reigns supreme!!!!!!

Over in ‘Junior Land’ our Juniors have also been looking at the world through the eyes of an Environmental Scientist……their focus being on connections and Lifecycles!!! What lifecycles are in motion in our local environment? What needs do these living things have to survive? What human impact (positive and negative) is there? We have had a major focus on maths and reading and our Juniors are gearing up to go swimming next week!quotes-18he7ck[1]

Our Middle Students, not to be outdone, are expanding the Environmental Scientist perspective and are inquiring into Ecosystems and Food Webs through the lens of RELATIONSHIPS. They are creating them and sharing their knowledge with each other……..the provocation being………now you know all about this particular ecosystem (they have chosen their own in one room, worked in pairs in another rom and are doing a collaborative inquiry in another room!) what would happen if an element of your ecosystem was removed? Discuss.

This Term has been a perfect example of how science is taught at Kunyung- you can see the development across the school in science skills and understandings! Watching all age groups in the school walking around and observing, collecting data, working together and sharing evidence has been AMAZING!!

PREPS- Living and Non-lIving things CONCEPT- Custodianship

JUNIORS- Lifecycles CONCEPT- Relationships

MIDDLES- Ecosystems CONCEPT- Relationships

SENIORS- Biodiversity CONCEPT- Responsibility (This Unit of Inquiry is not taking place at the moment!)

Our Senior Students have continued their inquiry into ‘Who we are’ and are spending time deeply thinking about challenges and risks that children all around the world face. It has been a perfect way to approach transition and has allowed students to address some of their concerns, worries, fears, excitements about growing up! A highlight has been the Family Life Program run by Family Life Victoria! Kelli is a wonderful presenter and the Seniors have approached such issues as puberty with maturity and confidence (and Kelli’s humorous approach has certainly supported these discussions!)

Let’s not forget FRENCH DAY………….our students looked amazing!! J

Now……..after reading ALL OF THAT………which Learner Profile attributes do you think our students and teachers have exhibited over the past fortnight????? Have a look below and try to identify some they may have not only used but had the opportunity to develop!!!!

IB LEARNER PROFILE

The aim of all IB programmes is to develop internationally minded people who, recognising their common humanity and shared guardianship of the planet, help to create a better and more peaceful world. The IB learner profi­le represents 10 attributes valued by IB World Schools. We believe these attributes, and others like them, can help individuals and groups become responsible members of local, national and global communities.

IB learners strive to be:

INQUIRERS

We nurture our curiosity, developing skills for inquiry and research. We know how to learn independently and with others. We learn with enthusiasm and sustain our love of learning throughout life.

OPEN-MINDED

We critically appreciate our own cultures and personal histories, as well as the values and traditions of others. We seek and evaluate a range of points of view, and we are willing to grow from the experience.

RISK-TAKERS- COURAGEOUS

We approach uncertainty with forethought and determination;

we work independently and cooperatively to explore new ideas and innovative strategies. We are resourceful and resilient in the face of challenges and change.

THINKERS

We use critical and creative thinking skills to analyse and take responsible action on complex problems. We exercise initiative in making reasoned, ethical decisions.

 

KNOWLEDGEABLE

We develop and use conceptual understanding, exploring knowledge across a range of disciplines. We engage with issues and ideas that have local and global signi­ficance.

CARING

We show empathy, compassion and respect. We have a commitment to service, and we act to make a positive difference in the lives of others and in the world around us.

 

BALANCED

We understand the importance of balancing different aspects of

our lives—intellectual, physical, and emotional—to achieve well-being for ourselves and others. We recognize our interdependence with other people and with the world in which we live.

REFLECTIVE

We thoughtfully consider the world and our own ideas and experience. We work to understand our strengths and weaknesses in order to support our learning and personal development.

COMMUNICATORS

We express ourselves confidently and creatively in more than one language and in many ways. We collaborate effectively, listening carefully to the perspectives of other individuals and groups.

 

PRINCIPLED

We act with integrity and honesty, with a strong sense of fairness and justice, and with respect for the dignity and rights of people everywhere. We take responsibility for our actions and their consequences.

 

Cheers

Kim Jackson

Assistant Principal

PYP Coordinator

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Making Thinking Visible! :)

Good Day Kunyung Families! :)

This is just an ‘in between’ my normal posts post!!!!!

I came across this short video created by the researchers at Harvard University who concentrate on developing ‘Thinking Routines’.…….their goal is to support people (particularly teachers!) to develop their students ability to be creative and deep thinkers!

At Kunyung we have been using many of these routines this year to really make our students thinking visible! In all classrooms you will see and hear these routines being used and discussed!

We wish to further explore, develop and use these in 2015 and beyond!

Please have a look- you may, not only find them interesting from a parental perspective, but you may also see their use in your jobs!!!!

For further information google Harvard University Thinking Routines or come and see me OR ask your children!!!!!!!

Cheers

Kim :)

Assistant Principal

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Kunyung’s Curriculum Vision! :)

Good Day All! 

PROVOCATION

If we are continually changing our teaching/thinking to prepare our students for the future……what that future will look like is something we need to consider…………BUT………what will it look like?

At the 2015 Prep Transition Parents’ Meeting on Wednesday, it was my role (alongside Jo B- one of our lovely Prep teachers!) to present to new parents our curriculum vision! Well, it’s a little trickier than I thought!! Not because we don’t have one but more because we have such a strong one that we live, breath, discuss, challenge and strive to improve ALL THE TIME…………….problem being how to put that into a simple statement that just ‘ makes sense’ to anyone!!

Well our statement went something like this……………

‘Kunyung Primary is an International Baccalaureate School implementing the Primary Years Program through an Inquiry-based, Concept-driven curriculum that prides itself on having a Visible Learning Culture and actively promotes Personalisation of Learning!!’

Hmmmm…….didn’t really follow the lines ‘making sense’ to anyone…. so we followed it up with……………In parents speak……..

‘Our staff are developing and learning as teachers to be the best we can be to ensure your children have every opportunity to be the best they can be!’

I think that went over a little better!!!!! :)

In truth though, we do have common language and a clear vision  in our school of where our curriculum is headed……What makes us so committed, and sure of our direction, is that it is all based on research and ‘best practice’. This allows us to follow up any questions with professional reading, access online support from around the world and participate in local and state networks set up to support each other….

Now we had them sold on our COMMON DIRECTION, we thought we might start to provoke the thinking of our audience!

We asked the parents to take a YES/NO stance on the following statements….what do you think?

Learning is best measured by a letter or a number.

Product is more important than process and progress.

Children need to be protected from any kind of failure.

Teachers know all the answers.

Teachers have to be in control of the class.

Teachers are responsible for the learning.

Students are obliged to respect teachers.

Learners need to sit quietly and listen.

Learning looks the same as when you went to school.

Focus on (and fix) your child’s shortcomings, rather than their successes.

We asked parents to look at the some images of classrooms in the past and classrooms today…….they shared what they saw, thought and wondered about them!! How things have changed……

What can we do in schools to prepare our students?

We CAN develop, support and grow the 21st Century skills, attitudes and learner attributes they will need to function in 2030 through an INQUIRY curriculum

We CAN develop students who take ownership of their learning through creating a Visible Learning Culture. Developing the skills of ‘How to learn! Not just what to learn!’

We CAN personalise student learning to meet their needs through a PERSONALISED program

What can you do to help us?

•Encourage questioning (Beyond the Why question we all love!!)
•Support Wonderings (I wonder what would happen if…..)
•Make Connections (What do we already know that will help us here?)
•Support (Nightly reading, notices, money)
•Be positive (Focus on what was good about their day! Suggest ways to solve problems)
•Relationships (Model good communication with teachers, friends, school)
•Read the School BLOG and newsletters (Stay informed!)

Just thought I would share some of our presentation as it really is applicable to all of our school community!

Have a lovely weekend everyone! :)

Kim Jackson

Assistant Principal

 

 

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Writer in Residence @ Kunyung Program: Rowena Wiseman-Published Author

This week our Writers Workshop lunchtime program held its first Writer in Residence @ Kunyung lunchtime program. This was open for Years 3-6 students. Our Writer in Residence @ Kunyung program has been established to engage our serious young writers and will be open to our Junior school students in the future.

Writer in Residence: Rowena Wiseman – Published Author

Writer in Residence Program 002

Rowena has offered her support and will be attending and making suggestions on how we can grow this program to benefit our young writers and illustrators. The students who attended our first Writer in Residence @ Kunyung were a pleasure to listen to. Their ability to compose rich questions reflected the talent of these students. Thank you Rowena!

Writer in Residence Program 007

Rowena brought her notebook, drafts of published works and explained how she collected ideas, honed her skills as a writer and the resilience required to become a published author.

It was interesting to hear how a writer asks others to read their work, comment and make suggestions, as well as the editing process a published piece of writing is subjected to as part of the publishing process.

Rowena is a parent member of our school community. We are also seeking other community members (grandparents etc.) involved in a writing based profession e.g. illustrating, advertising, journalist to name a few to become involved in this exciting program.

Our aim is to have a Writer in Residence @ Kunyung each month. We would love to hear from you and invite you to become a part of our Writer in Residence @ Kunyung program. This is the beginning of a wonderful school initiative which we hope will engage more of our students as word spreads.

 

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Welcome back to Term 4! :)

 NewsGood Day Kunyung Primary 

How great is it to be back!! The final Term of 2014 is going to be just as ‘jammed packed’ as the rest of the year…….and we love it!!

Let’s start Term 4 by looking back to the final week of Term 3……..in the midst of a wonderful and bright ‘Footy Day Parade’ and extremely talented ‘Star Search’ final……..our Senior Students shared their incredible learning in their EXHIBITION!

The comments from parents, students and teachers from neighbouring schools were overwhelmingly positive and such a credit to our students (and their wonderful teachers!)

Not only were our students able to articulate their learning and understanding of their inquiries, they were also able to take us through their learning journey by articulating the process of learning AND the action they wanted to take as a result! Very impressive indeed! J

Looking forward to this term………it started with a ‘bang’ on Monday (Not for students but definitely for staff!)

We were at a Professional Learning Day held at Mornington Primary School. There were over 110 staff from Mornington PS, Benton Junior College and Kunyung PS (All Local PYP Schools) and the focus of the day was ‘Visible Learning’- an important part of personalised learning and inquiry!

Here are some of my thoughts on the day

  • We have been working on developing a ‘Visible Learning Culture’ @ Kunyung for a couple of years and I think the day was affirmation of our choice of direction and of a lot of our current teaching practice.
  • The day also gave us things to really think about moving forward………..lots of questions for sure! The Professional conversations throughout the day were invaluable and have continued back at school! So much so we have dedicated next week’s staff meeting to further discussions about Visible Learning! (Please contact me if you would like to know more!)
  • There are many things that were discussed on the day that I think will shape our thinking during collaborative planning each week and also in classroom practice.news2
  • One thing I did think that we need to work towards is the development of a ‘Learning Process @ Kunyung’  …………………stay tuned! J
  • We have the ‘What to teach/learn’ in the form of continuums in the classroom, the attributes required to be a good Learner (What does a good learner look like), the attitudes and the skills BUT it’s time to be able to articulate the ‘How we are learning’ component!

Ultimately the main outcome of the day was to inspire our thinking back in the classroom……..how can we continue to support our students to understand what a ‘good learner’ says, makes and does! A really productive day! J

The first Units of Inquiry for this term are listed below! Please contact your child’s class teacher or myself if you would like to get involved! J

PREPS: Living things share resources in order to survive and grow (Sharing the planet)

JUNIORS: All living things are connected (Sharing the planet)

MIDDLES: Living things depend on each other and the environment to survive (Sharing the planet)

SENIORS: Children worldwide face a variety of challenges and risks (Who we are)

news4 Have a great first couple of days back and I look forward to seeing you around the school! 

 Cheers

 Kim Jackson

 Assistant Principal

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COMMUNICATION @ KUNYUNG in 2014! :)

This year we created a Communication @ Kunyung strategy with the following purpose: To create better links between the school and students’ homes as this will encourage positive learning experiences for students as the more parents know about our school, the more likely they will be able to improve and support their child’s learning. Better communication also supports our efforts to build our school’s reputation.

Please find below a copy of the ‘Communication @ Kunyung’ Strategy that we would like your feedback on! Receiving feedback will be one way to improve communication in 2015! Please add a comment below! Perhaps mention anything you have liked so far, new ideas and/or ways we could improve some of our current ideas!  We can’t always do everything but we will give many things a go! :)

Action Target   Audience Timing Responsibility

Start   of Year Communication

Welcome week ‘Parents and teachers consider communication the number one factor to   increase trust (Adams and Christenson, 2000)’ – letter / welcome classroom   environment / listening / phone calls, directing lost parents to the correct   area / person, etc. All families Term 1, Week 129 – 31/01/14 All staff
Prep Parents’ Morning Tea Prep Parents Week 1, Friday31/01/14 Prep team

Regular All Year Communication

Assemblies  All parents All staff
BlogsMaintain a lively, informative school blog, including introductory   information (usually in parent information handbook)More information to follow – What to include / person/s responsible   e.g.General information – Level leaderLiteracy information – Literacy PLT level leaderNumeracy information – Numeracy PLT level leaderTransdisciplinary information – Transdisciplinary PLT level leader All parents Introductory information – by 13/02/14Then regularly throughout the year Level LeadersPLT level leadersSpecialist teachers
Skoolbag App All parents Regularly throughout the year All staff (Level Leaders in particular)
Newsletters All parents Regularly throughout the year

Whole   School Events

Getting to Know You InterviewsPurpose:Teachers should take the opportunity to gather background information,   to answer the parents’ questions, to address their concerns, and to help   define their role in the learning process. The parents should take the   opportunity to provide the teacher with the cultural context of the student’s   learning (MTPYPH pg. 52) All parents Week 4, Term 117 & 19/02/14 Classroom teachers
Family Picnic Lunch / Open   classrooms Lunch: 1.30 – 2.30Open classrooms: 2.30 – 3.30pm (NB: No senior sport) All parents Friday: Week 5, Term 128/02/14 Classroom teachersPrincipal class
Carnival All families Week 7, Term 114/03/14 Assistant Principal
Grandparents’ morningTea and scones – 10amChildren write an invitation to their grandparents Grandparents Term 2, Week 2:9 – 10Classroom Leadership Team
Student-led tours(MTPYPH pg. 52) Term 2 -Education WeekDuring Planning sessions
Three-way conferences(MTPYPH pg. 52) Term 2,Last week
Written reports(MTPYPH pg. 53) Terms 2 and 4
Morning Tea with Principals  All parents Term 3 Principal class

Learning   @ Kunyung Primary School

Learning @ Kunyung 1:   Reading with your children Thursday, 20/03/14:2 – 3.30pm Literacy PLT leader
Learning @ Kunyung 2:   Learning and Teaching Tuesday,Term 26.30 – 7.30pm Transdisciplinary PLT leader
Learning @ Kunyung 3:   Numeracy 9.30 – 11Term 3 Numeracy PLT leader
Learning @ Kunyung 4:   Literacy 9.00 – 10Term 3 Literacy PLT leader
Prep presentation eveningFOCUS: Science Expo Prep parents & interested community members Term 32.30 – 3.30pm
Juniors presentation eveningFOCUS: Science Expo Junior parents & interested community members Term 36.00 – 7.30pm
Middles presentation eveningFOCUS: Night of Explorers Middles parents & interested community members Term 36.00 – 7.30pm
Seniors presentation eveningExhibition ‘How we share the planet’(MTPYPH pg. 53) Seniors parents & interested community members Term 46.00 – 7.30pm