St Matthew’s School empowers children to embrace life-long learning, and grow and develop as God intends.
God took the strength of a mountain,
The majesty of a tree,
The warmth of a summer sun,
The calm of a quiet sea,
The generous soul of nature,
The comforting arm of night,
The wisdom of the ages,
The power of the eagle’s flight,
The joy of a morning in spring,
The faith of a mustard seed,
The patience of eternity,
The depth of a family need,
Then God combined these qualities,
When there was nothing more to add,
He knew His masterpiece was complete,
And so, He called it … Dad
– Author Unknown
Dear Parents & Carers,
We are so lucky at St Matthew’s to have so many dedicated parents willing to give up their time, energy and talents to our beautiful school. A huge thank you to all of the volunteers who helped out at the carnivals last week and/or helped put on a fabulous Fathers’ Day Breakfast this morning. Without a doubt, we would not be able to run these events without the generosity and support of these incredible community members. We have shared photos from these two events in the School News section of this newsletter.
New School App Ready
I am pleased to hear that many families have been accessing the new school app. This, in conjunction with our newsletter, will now be our primary source of communication. Although it has the same features as the Connected App, including the ability to check important dates, log absentees and access the newsletter, there are a couple of differences to be aware of:
- There is no longer any need to select particular year levels. All messages will be listed in the order that they are posted; however, parents can choose to view specific year level messages, by selecting the desired year level at the top of the notifications tab. This will need to be selected each time you access the notifications.
- Calendar – important dates are listed at the top. Below this, is the monthly calendar. Daily events/activities are indicated by a dot. Parents can see these details by clicking in the box. A month-by-month display can be accessed by clicking on arrows on either side of the featured month
Please feel free to visit us in the Office, or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org, if you are having any difficulty downloading or navigating the St Matthew’s app.
Great Southern Network Stem Showcase on Wednesday 14th of September
Students in Years 3 and 4 have been invited to participate in the Catholic Education WA (CEWA) Great Southern Network Stem Showcase on Wednesday 14th of September at St Patrick’s School, Katanning. The event aims to promote learning in the STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) fields and students in Years 3 and 4 from other Catholic Primary Schools across the Southwest will present their knowledge and learning through interactive and engaging displays and presentations.
In class, Years 3 and 4 students have been eagerly working in groups to design, build and present their displays based on their chosen project. This Wednesday, both classes will have the opportunity to present their projects to other students.
Parents of Years 3 and 4 students are asked to please check the school app, or their emails, for more information regarding this excursion.
St Matt’s Talent show
To celebrate St Matthew’s Day on Friday 23rd of September, we will be holding a St Matt’s Talent show to showcase the wonderful gifts and abilities of our students. Understandably, due to time constraints, not every child can perform at this show, so each class will hold small auditions to allow all students the opportunity to participate. The best 2 acts from each class will be selected to perform at the final show on Friday 23rd of September at 2pm. Information regarding class auditions will be shared via email and the school app.
Principal Focus – Listen, Just Listen
This week is National Child Protection Week. The safety and health of our children is obviously of paramount importance to all of us. As parents, we look to protecting our children by establishing boundaries, providing healthy food, watching their online behaviour and keeping them out of harm’s way; however, sometimes it is the simple things that are the most important.
Today, I want to highlight the importance of listening to our children. The National Association for Prevention of Child abuse and Neglect (NAPCAN) explains in their brochure “Listening to Children”:
Making a point of listening to every child you know is one of the most important things you can do. It shows children you really care and respect that they are worth listening to. This helps them feel they are special and respected. Being listened to also helps children to practice putting ideas into words, explore their feelings, and develop self-confidence. When you listen to your child, you benefit by learning more about how your child thinks and feels, and what they need.
Naturally, in order to listen to our kids, we need to be able to encourage them to talk. Many parents mention to me that they don’t know what their child does at school because when they ask them, they only get one word answers, such as “nothing” or “stuff”. Raisingchildren.net.au explores this very topic in their article “Talking About School”:
Talking with your child about the school day shows you’re interested in what’s going on in their life. This interest boosts your child’s mental health, happiness and wellbeing. It can also have a very positive effect on your child’s behaviour and achievement. It shows your child that you value school and education, which encourages them to value it too.
When you’re in touch with your child’s feelings about school, you’re more likely to see problems before they get too big. This way you can work on overcoming challenges together.
Finally, maybe these tips will help:
Ask about the best thing that happened in your child’s day. Remember what has been going on for your child so you can ask the best questions.
Ask about their friends.
Ask their opinions about things.
Ask how they would solve problems. But respect their answers!
If you are reading a book with your children, discuss it with them. Pause at the end of each page for them to comment.
If your child doesn’t respond to a question, don’t push. Change the topic.
Remember that children live much more in the minute than adults. If they don’t want to talk about what happened at school, it’s probably because it’s not important anymore!