From the Acting Deputy Head of Junior School

Chocolate Gifts for Easter – No Thanks
With Easter upon us, can I please take this opportunity to remind all families that we discourage the sharing of Easter Eggs and food between children. Please encourage your children to celebrate this celebration with non-food products. Homemade cards are a thoughtful and suitable alternative. A few years ago, a young boy at our school was given an Easter Egg gift from his older buddy. Knowing that he had allergies to certain chocolates he sensibly put the Easter Egg in his lunch box. On the way home from school the little boy, sitting in the back seat of the car, took the chocolate from his lunch box, knowing that his parents would only put safe food in his lunch box. He had forgotten that it was a gift. Very quickly anaphylaxis set in and luckily for him the Epipen was handy and was used before the ambulance arrived.

Currently, Carey Junior School is supporting a number of students with a diagnosis of food related allergies or anaphylaxis; this condition is recognised as a severe form of allergy which can progress rapidly with potential to be life threatening, if untreated. Peanuts, tree nuts and chocolate-based products, known to contain traces of nuts, have been identified as the leading cause of food-induced anaphylaxis (ASCIA). Whilst it is not possible to maintain a ‘nut free’ environment, protecting students with life threatening allergies highlights the need to impose some limitations on chocolate and nut-based foods introduced into the school to minimise this risk. Peanut butter, Nutella and muesli bars containing nuts and sesame seed products can be implicated in higher associated risks and, if possible, avoided. Thank you for your support.

Grandfriends Day
The bond between a grandparent and grandchild is precious and unique. On Wednesday we had the pleasure of hosting Grandfriends Day and what a memorable day it was. The children took great delight and pride when they escorted their Grandfriends into their classroom to play games, survey them, or conducting a tour of places of interest such as the Year 3 garden and the newly renovated Upper Hickman building.

Grandfriends, young and older, were treated to a celebration of music and wisdom at Lower and Upper School assemblies – plus scones and jam for morning tea. The interest and devotion shown towards their young treasures is evident and heart-warming. It is so obvious that children benefit when grandparents are involved in their lives, and grandparents also enjoy benefits from the relationship with their grandchildren.

Science Technology Engineering Mathematics
Melinda Bowls, an experienced Digital Technologies teacher, has been working with our Year 1 and Year 3 children and teachers this term. Melinda will work with all year levels throughout the year. The Years 1 and 3 children have had the opportunity to experiment and familiarise themselves with Scratch and Scratch JR and Hopscotch. These apps introduce children to conceptual understanding about coding and programming before they move towards text-based programming in the latter years. They have also been actively involved in a Monday lunchtime Coding Club. The noise of excited chatter that comes from strong engagement and collaboration is music to my ears.

Next term, Coding Club will continue for Years 1 and 3 and Years 5 and 6 children will be invited to a Coding Lunch too. Year 6 have recently been invited to join ‘Deconstruction Zones’ where they, as the title suggests, deconstruct disused appliances and mechanical devises under the guidance of teachers. The purpose-built spaces in Junior School allow us to realise our dreams of creating new learning opportunities that encourage and facilitate curiosity and problem solving. Years 5 and 6 have participated in science experiments in the Senior School laboratories, and Year 6 have benefited from visiting experts on electricity and chemical reactions. As well as these specific examples, ‘Plugged and Unplugged’ technology continues to be integrated into the usual curriculum. Our goal is to strengthen the problem-solving skills, logical thinking, curiosity and creativity of all students by encouraging them to experiment with unplugged and plugged technologies.

There is always much anticipation before the Year 6 children are introduced to their Prep buddies, buddies that they grow to love and for whom they take responsibility for during House sessions and events. After meeting and getting to know each other at special morning tea times, the Year 6 children escorted the Prep children to their first House session. Each Prep was introduced to the members of the House by their Year 6 buddy, and they each received their special Carey badge and a welcome applause. Our House system is a rich cross age experience where relationships are developed, strengthening the circle of community for each child. During the last House session the children were introduced to the concept of ‘people in my hand’ – five people they can name that they feel safe with, they trust, feel they know them well, would be there for them and people they could talk to about anything. This House focus is a small part of Carey’s commitment to Child Safe.

Colleen Jarrett-Burke
Acting Deputy Head – Student Learning