This term in STEM we have been investigating the Earth and Space Sciences. The junior school looked at weather patterns in our atmosphere and used book creator to make a digital book about the weather. The middle school explored the sizes, shapes, positions and movements of the Sun, Earth and Moon and used experiments to explore shadows. They also conducted experiments on plants, based on different growing conditions including flood, drought and no sunlight. The senior school investigated the relationships between the different planets in our solar system. They also looked at natural disasters and how we can protect our houses from their impact.
The whole school participated in Science week activities where they had opportunities to participate in experiments, dress up like a scientist and had an incursion looking into space exploration.
Excursion to the Islamic Museum of Australia
On Monday the 21st of October, our 5/6 students visited the Islamic Museum of Australia as part of our Religious Education studies. The excursion was a chance to learn about the Islamic faith and explore the similarities and differences between this faith and the Catholic traditions.
Students also had the chance to learn about the history of the Islamic faith and it’s connection to Australian History.
It was a very powerful experience that will allow our students to develop greater respect and appreciation for other faiths, cultures and traditions.
Below are some reflections on the day from our students on what they learned and the connections they made between the Islamic faith and Catholic teachings.
“The Islamic family tree is heavily linked to the Christian Bible.” Thomas K
“Jesus is not seen as God but a prophet in the Islamic faith. His name is Isa in Arabic.” Jacob T
“I learned that muslims first came to Australia in the 1700s from Indonesia and traded with the Aboriginals.” Angus
“I learnt that Muslims pray 5 times a day and specific times.” Ebony
“I learnt that some Muslim women wear a head scarf known as a hijab, but they don’t all wear them” Sienna G
“Muslims pray in mosques and there are loads of Islamic mosques all around the world” Amari
“I learnt that not all muslims have to fast during Ramadan. Some people such as the sick, elderly, young children or pregnant women don’t have to.” Anna
Prep -Two Swimming Program
Recently our junior school students participated in a two week, intensive swimming skills program at Aqualink Swimming Centre in Nunawading. The students were grouped according to their swimming abilities and worked with their trained swimming instructors to develop their skills and water safety knowledge.
Here are a few comments from our junior students on their experience.
What did you learn?
Lucas: We practiced freestyle. You have to move your arms and blow bubbles for your breathing.
Alana: I learnt survival backstroke. So if you are in a dangerous situation, like at the beach you can do survival backstroke.
Sheridan: I learnt how to float on my back.
What did you improve?
Lucas: I improved how to dive and pick up heavy toys from the bottom of the pool.
Alana: I got better at floating on my back, you need to remember to lift your tummy up when floating and spread out your arms.
Sheridan: I am more confident swimming in the deep end of the pool because I had my teacher help me.
Tournament of Minds
Congratulations to our two St John’s teams who competed in the Tournament of Minds, regional tournament held at Deakin University on Saturday 17th and Sunday 18th of August.
Tournament of Minds provide an opportunity for students to experience group participation in challenging, creative problem solving activities. Each team performed their Long Term Challenge, which they have been creating over the past five weeks, in front of an audience and judging panel.
Both teams recieved excellent feedback from the judges on their creativity, teamwork and presentation skills. Both St John's teams finished in the top third for all competing schools in the Spotaneous Challenge. A special congratulations to Team 1 for acheiving honours in their Long Term challenge and finishing in the top 10% of all competing schools. Here are some comments from students who represented St John's this year:
What was the best part about being involved in T.O.M?
Erin - Working with others students to create the script, costumes and sceneboards.
Ebony - Communicating with my group and coming up with creative ideas.
Josh - Making the props and backdrops and being able to work with different people.
Why would you recommend T.O.M for other students?
Sienna - Because it's a good learning experience and it challenges your thinking.
Chris - I would recommend it because you work with new people and it is really fun.
Amari - Because you get to be creative and make loads of fun, it’s a great opportunity for everyone.
This term our preps have been on some fantastic excursions and involved in some exciting learning. They visited Schwerkolt Cottage, Woolworths in Ringwood and also had the Nunawading fire department visit them at school.
Below is some more insight to what they did.
Prep NC hopped on the parish buses and went to Schwerkolt Cottage in Mitcham, just near Antonio Park.
They learnt about the Schwerkolt family who settled in the area in the 1880s, growing and maintaining fruit trees and a small vineyard. They saw the original stone cottage that the family lived in, the smoking house where they cured their meat and the cellar where they kept their food and produce cool.
Last week Prep NC caught the train to Ringwood station with the assistance of some parent helpers. They then walked to Woolworths in Ringwood to check out how the food is delivered to us in our homes and the processes that take place at the supermarket. They looked in the big fridges and freezers and saw the box crusher in action. They learnt about healthy eating and the benefits of eating a variety of different coloured fresh food.
After a little food tasting they received a show bag and headed back to school on the train again.
For the last two Tuesdays, Firefighters from the Nunawading Fire Station have come to visit the Preps as part of our Fire Education Program. We learnt what to do in an emergency and the specialised equipment that is used to fight a fire. Yesterday we went inside the fire truck and listened to the firefighters explain what happens on the way to an emergency. We all had a go shooting the hoses, turning on the lights and listening to the sirens.
STEM Learning - Term 2
This term in STEM we have been investigating the Biological Sciences.
The junior school looked at life cycles of different animals and how they can represent them using pictures and playdoh.
The middle school created a slideshow with hyperlinks about their chosen animal.
The senior school investigated animals living in different extreme environments and had to combine their adaptations to a “new” animal they discovered.
Immigration Museum Excursion
Recently our year 3/4 students visited the Immigration Museum as part of their inquiry learning for this term.
Students participated in an interactive story telling lesson focusing on individual journeys to Victoria. They explored various artefacts and objects from the museum's collection
This excursion was a terrific way for students to learn more about the experiences of individuals and groups that migrated to Australia during the 1800's.
Here are some comments from our 3/4 students:
Zarah - "I listened to stories about refugees who came to Australia to have a better home and be safe".
Hayden - "I learnt about how people migrate to Australia for different reasons, such as for work, family or to escape poverty".
Abbey - " I enjoyed listening to the stories because one of them connected to my family's background and how they migrated to Australia from Vietnam to escape danger'.
STEM Learning at St John's
At St John's we have been learning our science topic of Physical Sciences through the lens of STEM learning (science, technology, engineering and mathematics).
Our Physical Sciences topics focused on light or forces across the school.
Our video shows a snapshot of some of the learning our students were involved in during Term 1.
Year 6 Camp -
What a fantastic week our year 6 students had together at Lake Nilahcootie! Making friends and trying new fun and exciting activites!
A week filled with canoeing, abseiling, archery, flying fox, low ropes, mountain biking and more.
"I loved abseiling and the flying fox because it was a bit scary but fun. We had an awesome time meeting new people and hanging out with our friends".
"I liked canoeing because it was fun learning how to do it on our own. We got lost, but found our way back then got really muddy! The week was great, I made new friends from St James and got to spend time with my own friends. I got to do somethings I hadn't done before and we had to work together to do them" By Phoebe
What a wonderful day we had celebrating the cultural diversity of all St. John students on Harmony Day! We participated in many different activities learning about the Chinese, Italian, Aboriginal and Tongan cultures.
The lap-a-thon was a huge success with all students raising money for the less fortunate.
We would like to all our families for providing delicious food for us to share together. At St John’s we are so fortunate to celebrate our diversity and value the inclusion of all.
Year 5 Camp - Sovereign Hill
On Monday the 17th of June our year 5 students travelled to Ballarat to spend two nights away on their first St John's camp.
Students participated in a range of activities that included exploring the gold museum, AURA lights and sound show, gold pouring and mine tours.
They also participated in a two day costume school program, where students had the chance to experience the magic of stepping back in time to become an 1850s child on the Ballarat diggings.
It was a fantastic three days away and one we hope our students will remember fondly for years to come!
Here are some comments from our Year 5 students about their camp experience:
Chris - "I loved the costume school experience, it gave me a good idea of how much different school is now compared to the 1850's".
Ebony - "I enjoyed being in character as part of the costume school because I got a chance to see how children were treated during the 1850's".
Lena - "Sovereign Hill made me feel like I had really travelled back to goldfields during the 1850's!"
Chinese teaching at St John's
Ni hao! This year the 5 / 6 students have been fortunate in the to begin their new adventure of learning Chinese at St John’s!
The students learn with a Chinese teacher direct from China, learning key phrases and correct pronunciations of words, followed by a learning focus about the diverse culture and festivals in China.
In the past two weeks students have learnt:
Ni hao - Hello!
Wo jiao - My name is
Ni hao ma? - How are you?
Wo hen hao - I am very good.
Xie xie - Thank you.
Bu ke qi - You are welcome
Za jian - Goodbye.
Twilight Sports 2019
Congratulations to Durkin (red) house for another great win!
And to Jack (Lyons) and Amity (Coghlan) for their determination and success in the Championship Senior 400 metre event.
It is celebrating events like this that make our little school come together and stand out from the rest...so well done and thank you!
Summer Sports Carnival
On Wednesday 20th March the 5/6 students went to Heatherdale reserve and participated in the Summer sports carnival. The sports included newcombe, tennis and softball.
The day was a fantastic success. All students had fun and tried their best. Well done to our boys tennis team for coming first overall and our girls softball for coming runners up in their competition!