13 April 2011

Version 6
Naumai e te whanau o te kura Muritai
Tena koutou katoa

Dear Parents / Caregivers,
Welcome to our newest additions to the Muritai family – Marcus Ruane, Jack Roche and Sam Hands.

It is hard to believe that we are coming to the end of the first term. As per usual at Muritai it has been jam packed with events and activities, as well as a solid learning programme. Our last fortnight has been very busy with sporting, academic and social events listed below. I am aware that children and teachers are very tired but are to be congratulated on an excellent term. Everyone deserves a break but please make sure to keep on top of those academic activities through the holiday break – daily reading, pop maths tests, writing to grandparents, online brain games. It all helps to keep the children moving forward. Most of all enjoy the family time together.

It was with real sadness and shock that we learnt of the sudden passing of a past Muritai student, Penelope Lake. I remember Penelope as a very talented student with a lovely, quiet demeanour and very good relationships with her peers. Since leaving Muritai, Penelope had continued to put so much into her life at high school and university with many achievements and a kind, caring demeanour. Our thoughts and prayers go to her family, Robert, Sarah and Amy at this time.

At the end of this term we say farewell to Jess Savage. Jess has made quite an impression in her three terms at Muritai but is returning to the UK to be closer to her family. We are very sad to see Jess go but we thank her for sharing her teaching skills with the children and her friendship with us all. Replacing Jess in room 8 is Hayden Wyllie. Hayden did his teacher training in Dunedin and taught in the deep south until traveling overseas and teaching in central London.

We also say goodbye to Cath Barker, our after school care manager, who is taking maternity leave. We wish Cath all the best for her next journey. Taking over at after school care is Amanda O’Brien, who has been part of out of school programmes for many years and joins us from recently being part of Youthtown, a care programme in Upper Hutt. Amanda specializes in programme development and has a number of new ideas for our after school care programme so you could say MASKC is now ‘under new management’.

Our resident 'Enviroman' Hayden Ray organised a community 3 day working bee which finishes tonight just sprucing up the gardens. Poet's walk is now finished, gardens are tidied and plants spread around a bit more evenly. We have just scratched the surface though - there is much more work to be done so expect another request for help soon.

What is new on OUR LEARNING on our website -

• On the Gateway Mr Skilton has loaded a brilliant Maths practice website - Click here
• The Art Blog has some lovely art to share - Click here
• Read about the Enviroschool teams latest project – Click here
• The Mantle of the Expert team have been working hard – Click here
• Some classroom blog descriptions on children understanding assessment – Room 7 and Room 22

The ICAS Assessment programme is an independent assessment programme for schools.

Every student who enters an ICAS exam receives a detailed diagnostic assessment, measuring their progress and acknowledging their level of achievement in five areas. Science, Spelling, Writing, English and Mathematics.

The competitions take place every year in schools throughout Australia, New Zealand and the Pacific region and are completely voluntary.

The competitions and dates for 2011 are:

1. Science – Wednesday 8th June
2. Spelling – Tuesday 21st June
3. Writing – Tuesday 21st June (Persuasive text)
4. English – Tuesday 2nd August
5. Mathematics – Tuesday 16th August

A notice has gone home with your child. If you are interested in your child being involved in one or more of these assessments please get a form from the office, complete the form and include payment by the end of the term, Friday 15th April. Late entries can not be accepted.

On Wednesday 2 of our year 4 students, Isla Armstrong and Helena Cvitanovich went to the Plunket playgroup to be Easter bunnies and give the little ones Easter eggs. They hid the eggs for the toddlers to find in the park by the pool. Afterwards they went back to the Plunket rooms and gave eggs to all the wee ones who didn't come to the park. What a lot of fun for everyone!

As you may or may not know in Term 2 and 3 the Home and School Committee run a fundraiser selling Hot Dogs to the children on a Wednesday. To do this we need parents to help out with the cooking of the Hot Dogs. This is not a difficult job but requires people who are available for 1 hour on a Wednesday from 11.30 to 12.30.

We are desperately seeking more people to help with this roster so if anyone is looking to help the school in a small way then this might be it. Even if you can only do one Wednesday a term that would be fantastic and we would like to hear from you. Please note that you don’t have to do this job on your own there are always two parents on cooking duty.

So if you are able to help please contact Claire Allan on claireandben@xtra.co.nz or 5669964. Thank you in advance for all your help.

We were most privileged to have an African Rhythm drummer, Eddie Quansah come to Muritai to perform for us on Thursday 7th April. This was a show for the whole school and was most entertaining. It was a highly participatory performance where the students had the opportunity to play simple rhythm techniques with Eddie. They practised drumming, chanting and singing African melodies. Eddie shared the language of the drums and explained the parts that the many different drums play in African ceremonies and rituals.

Muritai School is pleased to announce the Entertainment Book fund-raiser. The brand new 2011/2012 Entertainment™ Book features many of the area’s best restaurants, cafes, hotel accommodation, attractions, and activities for families… all with valuable 25% to 50% off and 2 for 1 offers. Purchase an Entertainment™ Book and receive over $15,000 in valuable offers that you and your family can use all year – from now, until June, 2012! The Book is filled with leading businesses including:

٠Logan Brown ٠The White House ٠Arbitrageur ٠Boulcott Street Bistro٠Wagamama ٠Chocolate Dayz ٠The Tasting Room ٠The Flying Burrito Brothers٠McDonald’s ٠Burger King ٠Co Bar ٠Bordeaux Bakery٠The Hurricanes ٠SkyCity Cinemas ٠Wellington Zoo ٠N.Z.S.O. ... and hundreds more!

The best part is that for only $60.00, you’ll be helping us fund-raise, with $12.00 from every Book sold contributing towards school sports uniforms. Books will be sent home to families on Wednesday 4 May. Entertainment™ Books provide important funds for our school and valuable savings for our families. Please take the time to look through the Book when you receive it, and take as many orders from your work colleagues, friends or relatives. For further details, please contact the school office.

The Junior school would like some extra helpers (parents, grandparents or people in the community) who are willing to listen to children read either at 9 a.m. or 2.15 p.m. We know that children who have 1:1 attention with their learning can accelerate their progress so if you can spare some time to help our youngest children get a head start, please email Maureen Buckley at buckley@muritai.school.nz

Last Friday Muritai School hosted the Wellington Kids Lit Quiz. 46 teams of 4 students from all around Wellington were packed into the hall with their teachers and supporters. Everything ran like clockwork and we all had a great time. Students answered questions in their teams about books in different categories like Mythical Creatures or Harry Potter. Books and even cash were up for grabs. The top performing Muritai finished 12th overall in a jam packed bunch at the top of the leaderboard.

Thank you to our team of student greeters, snack packers and all the staff who helped out on this busy occasion. The overall winners of the day were Evan's Bay Intermediate.


Y5-8 Muritai School Swimming Sports
On Monday 11th April 156 students from Y5-8 competed in either freestyle, breaststroke or backstroke events at Huia Pool. With students given the choice of what events they would compete in, teachers were yet again impressed with the high level of enthusiasm displayed by students. With such a high up-take the swim meet consisted of 88 individual races, including heats, finals and relays. Although students were eager to do well against their peers there was plenty of encouragement and sportsmanship displayed from everyone involved. Thank you to the parents who were able to come along and cheer the children on and to the fantastic teaching team who each played an important role to ensure the events ran smoothly.

Special acknowledgements go to the following swimmers who placed first in their events:

1 length Freestyle: Fraser Wilson (Y5 boys), Grace Allan (Y5 girls), Matthew Sutcliffe (Y6 boys), Dorrie Brennan (Y6 girls), Xavier Manson (Y7 boys), Hailey Griffiths (Y7 girls), McLeod Harrison (Y8 boys), Mia Harrey (Y8 girls)

1 length Breaststroke: Will Griffiths (Y5 boys), Milly Griffiths (Y5 girls), Alastair Curtis-Walcott (Y6 boys), Dorrie Brennan (Y6 girls), Gareth Severin (Y7 boys), Hailey Griffiths (Y7 girls), Taylor Snow (Y8 boys), Abby Barclay (Y8 girls)

1 length Backstroke: Fraser Wilson (Y5 boys), Grace Allan (Y5 girls), Matthew Sutcliffe (Y6 boys), Mia Weber (Y6 girls), David Balayan (Y7 boys), Kia Jewell (Y7 girls), Finn Janssens (Y8 boys), Meg Sykes (Y8 girls)

2 lengths Freestyle: Louis Rutherford (Y5 boys), Grace Allan (Y5 girls), Alastair Curtis-Walcott (Y6 boys), Dorrie Brennan (Y6 girls), Xavier Manson (Y7 boys), Hailey Griffiths (Y7 girls), McLeod Harrison (Y8 boys), Tayla Rogers (Y8 girls)

The champion class relay teams for 2011 were Room 15 (Y5/6), Room 21 (Y7/8) and the winning house relay team was King!

Touch Rugby
What a superb term it's been for touch rugby! All 5 teams played so well all season. I don't think we have had such great results in a long time. Check out the results from the Finals Week.

• Muritai Sharks won the Grand Final 4-3 so they finished in first place! Well done!!
• Muritai Eagles lost the Grand Final (to the Sharks in extra time) 3-4 so they finished in second place. This team performed superbly especially as year 5s they were playing the Sharks (a year 6 team in the finals). Well done Eagles!!
• Muritai Storm won the Grand Final 2-1 so they finished in first place! Super stuff Storm, you guys had a great season!
• Muritai Flyers lost the Grand Final 3-5, so they finished in second place. Another great season from the Flyers!
• Muritai Hurricanes won the play off for 3rd and 4th place 4-0 so they finish strongly in 3rd place. Great stuff Hurricanes!

A great season for all teams. I am looking forward to seeing you all back (and more players) for the Term 4 competition.

Year 7/8 Southern Zone Cross Country
On Wednesday 6th April the following 13 year 7/8 students were involved in competing at the Southern Zone Cross Country; Clara Lafont, Mia Harrey, Tessa McFarlane, Harrison Swift, Levi Walton, Mcleod Harrison, Tayla Rogers, Lily Giles, Molly McFarlane, Liam Brandwood, Rupert McRae, Kia Jewell and Harry Quinn.

It was an extremely successful day with Muritai children winning every division.

Year 7/8 HRSA Inter Zone Swimming
On Monday 11th April Levi Walton, John Woodnorth, Tayla Rogers, Xanthe Winfield and Elspeth Morley competed at the HRSA Zone Swimming event. The students sacrificed participating in the school swimming sports in order to compete at this highly competitive level with our students having great results.

Basketball Year 5/6
A group of year 5 and 6 boys from Muritai School have been playing in a basketball league every Thursday for the past 8 weeks at Walter Nash Stadium in Taita. Only 2 of the boys have ever played basketball before. The team very quickly proved their skills on court and at finals night on 7 April they were "top of the table". Unfortunately they lost their final game but are not giving in to defeat and are looking forward to returning to the court next term. They have been very fortunate to have Andy Shaffer as their coach. Andy's enthusiasm for the sport has rubbed off on the boys and with effort and commitment on everyone's part the team has been a great success. Congratulations to Andy Shaffer (Coach), Curtis Shaffer, Oscar McClelland, Rhys Baines, William Langley, Liam Ferrier, Bayden Moors, Mathieson Lamb and Liam Lamb.

Basketball Year 4
The Muritai Hawks, a team made up of six year 4 boys, - Tom Flynn, Callan Hughes, Tobias Knight, Lincoln Moffat, Tomas Pajo, and Max Hahn, have had an exceptional 1st term result coming in 2nd in the A grade league at Randwick. Well done boys!

Francesca Goodman-Smith, a past Muritai student is holding a fundraiser at the Lighthouse cinema to help her raise money for a student exchange to Germany. The movie is Brighton Rock, a crime thriller starring Helen Mirren, John Hurt and Andy Serkis. Contact Francesca for more details on 5628048 or silverfern1@live.com

Netball Holiday Training camp
Netball Hutt Valley is holding a holiday coaching programme from Monday April 18- Thursday April 21. Details are on their website. The coaching times are =

Year 3-4 9.00-10.30 - $40
Year 5-6 11.00 - 1.00 - $50
Year 7-8 1.30 - 3.30 - $50

Tennis Holiday Camps and Coaching at Muritai Tennis Club
Monday 18 April to Thursday 21 April or Tuesday 26 April to Friday 29 April. Please contact Andy Wheeler on 027 4599 321 or email andy@capitalcoaching.co.nz for more information.

Piano Lessons with Vanessa Tindle (ATCL, BSc, dipTchg) Vanessa has a few vacancies for next term. If you would like your child to learn piano with Vanessa please contact her directly to discuss. Ph 562 7663.

Experienced babysitter with references Millie Hooke is 15 ½ years old and keen to help you look after your children. Please phone 5627003 or 0272702650

Craft Classes at Studio 88 Tuesdays 3.30 to 5.00pm. All ages. Contact Nadine Archibald on 831 5101 or nades88@hotmail.com