Thursday 24 May 2012

Naumai e te whanua o te kura Muritai
Kia koutou katoa

Dear parents/caregivers,

Welcome to our new students - Tessa Treadwell-Burke (R7), Mia Treadwell- Burke (R13), Tai Treadwell-Burke (R1), Javier Perez-Benet (R1), Marta Perez-Benet (R15) and Marieve Wilson-Bray (R2).

A big thank you to Caroline Hutton (room 15), Anna Pringle (room 11) and Grace Emmanuel (room 2) who have been at Muritai for the last 7 weeks on teaching practice. It has been wonderful to have those extra pair of hands at school and a pleasure hosting them as part of their learning to become a trained teacher. 

Staff are currently preparing reports on student progress to hand to parents in the final week of this term. Reports go home on Friday 22 June with the student learning journeys (previously portfolios). These reports are plain language evaluations of where your child is sitting in terms of strengths and their next steps against the New Zealand curriculum and how they are progressing towards the end of year National Standard. These reports are supported by the parent interview.

We hope to give you a clear picture of how your child is achieving at school, not just in the basics of reading, writing and maths but also their wider contribution to the school environment such as their conduct and effort in class. These are difficult to measure but vital in terms of framing success.

A reminder that staff are available to meet with parents at any time but please set up an appointment so the teacher can do some preparation. 

Parent/teacher interviews will be held in the last week of term on Wednesday 27 and Thursday 28 June.  School will be finishing early on both these days at 2.15 with interviews commencing at 2.30.  We will let you know when the booking details have been finalised and how to book on-line.  You may like to mark these dates in your diaries to keep them free.

Thank you to all the parents and caregivers who came to room 3 last week to learn more about the teaching of writing, handwriting and spelling in the Junior School. Next week, on Wednesday 30 May, there will be an information evening about the reading process in the first two years at school and some ways to support your child's reading at home.  All parents and caregivers of Junior School children are invited to come to room 3 at 7pm. If you have any questions please do not hesitate to ask Mrs Buckley.

As parents we know that our children are their own people, they are not the same as their siblings, they have their own set of strengths and weaknesses, their own passions, and they have their own individual skills and talents. They are people in their own right. One of our teaching colleagues has made this short video around a one size fits all approach to education. Regardless of where people sit on the political spectrum this 6 minute clip is worth watching.
The referencing of names to current politicians is uncanny.

The latest School Holiday Programme has been organised for the holidays 2 to 13 July with lots of fun events and outings for the children.  If you would like to book your children in for any of the days, please pick up a brochure from the school office or have a look at the ASC blog and download a brochure.  All enrolment forms and full payment must be received at the school office before Friday 22 June.  We cannot guarantee enrolments after this date.

Both teachers and students were keen participants during the recent National Primary Science Week. Staff experimented with chemical reactions during morning tea breaks and students had classrooms fizzing and popping with experiments involving chemical change; such as 'fizz inflators', exploding lunch bags and 'lava in a cup.'

Thank you to teacher Murray McMillan and Room 11 for assembling the rocket for Friday's end of week blast off on the school field.
Mrs Ryan

Yesterday was such a lovely day for this special event. Well done to everyone who tried their best. Thank you to Mrs Cody for organising the event and also thanks to our year 8 students who were marshalls or runners for the races. It was lovely to see so many parents, grandparents and caregivers joining us for the event.

Results were:
Year 1 boys - 1st - Theo Thompson, 2nd - Nelson Churchman, 3rd - Ned Sykes.
Year 1 girls - 1st Rosa Blair, 2nd - Lola Campbell, 3rd - Mia Campbell 
Year 2 boys - 1st Harry Rookes, 2nd - Joe Dickson, 3rd - Jack Roche 
Year 2 girls - 1st Lucy Mirfin-Newman, 2nd - Te Hani Archibald, 3rd - Esme Daley

Each year Scholastic books provides a fantastic opportunity for parents to view and purchase some of the books they have on sale through the Muritai School Book fair. This year the book fair will once again run in conjunction with the parent teacher interviews, on both Wednesday the 27th, and Thursday the 28th of June. Further information about the book fair will follow but please mark these dates in your dairy now.

We are looking for one special person who could help coordinate the book fair. If you are interested in finding out a bit more as to what would be involved please let Carole or Sue know in the office.

Our charity leadership team did so well raising $451.70 for Oxfam with the wacky hair day and the coffee morning . Thank you for supporting this project that focused on the students learning about fair trade.

Our school policy is that dogs are not to be on the property. Although we discourage our children to approach dogs, often they are tied up outside the school and there is always the risk that they will approach the dog. What happens next is always unpredictable and how a dog reacts to a boisterous stranger depends on the quality of the training. We would strongly encourage dog owners, if they need to bring the dog to school, to tie their dog up well away from the access areas for children. 

At the beginning of each term we have no lost property. At the end of week 4 we have a huge amount. All of it is unnamed and ranging in price from the expensive to the very expensive. Children scout the property after break and lunch and if clothing is named we find the owner. if not named it goes to lost property.  Room 7 then cross check and analyse the clothing once a week to see if any named clothing is there. Fortnightly we place the lost property out for inspection. Please help us keep lost property to an absolute minimum by naming clothing.

A copy of this resource from the NZ Transport Agency, which outlines safer journeys for school children has been sent home to all parents. I encourage you to make use of it.

Best of luck to our year 8 school leaders who are in Wellington on Monday at the Young Leaders Day, and to our year 4-6 Zone Cross Country team who are representing Muritai on Tuesday at the zone sports at Boulcott School. I am sure both groups will represent the school with pride.


Fri 25 May - World vision  famine weekend
Mon 28 May - Young Leaders day (Y8 students)
Wed 30 May - Y4-6 Zone cross country/ Junior school reading mtg 7.00
Fri 1 June - School assembly 1.40
Mon 4 June - Queen's Birthday - School closed 
Wed 6 June - ICAS Science; Starting school at Five at 7.00 in staffroom
Fri 15 June - School assembly 1.40

House for Rent
4 Bedroom family house for rent - Days Bay, Ferry Road.  $595 per week.  Available from 7 June 2012.  Contact Liz or Ken Jones on 04 562 6309 or Jenny Hibbert at Select Residential on 04 565 3695

East Harbour Kindy Fundraiser
Join East Harbour Kindergartent for a fundraising event featuring a screening of Carnage.  Wednesday 6 June at 8pm, the Light House Cinema.  $25 per ticket includes a glass of bubbles or orange juice, a goodie bag and the chance to win fabulous prizes. 

Numberworks'NWords After-School Tuition
Numberworks'nWords supports Kiwi students by tailoring lessons according to each individual's needs by setting achievable goals and monitoring their progress and developing our own programmes using only qualified Maths and English experts for New entrant to Year 11
Contact - Phone 570 0737 or

Lost - one Royal Blue School Bag
A child has lost his school bag, probably on the bus to Point Howard.  It is named 'Ethan Smith' and has a lunchbox inside.  If you have found this bag, could you please contact Kirsty Colvin on 560 3633.

Wellington Girls' College
Wellington Girls' College will be holding their annual School in Action morning for Year 8 girls on Wednesday 13 June from 9am to 12.30 pm.  In an attempt to reduce congestion, the college will run three sessions 9am, 10am and 11.30.  

Wednesday 9 May 2012

Naumai e te whanau o te kura Muritai 

Kia ora koutou 

Dear parents/caregivers,

Welcome to Matthew Cowley who joined the Muritai School family this week in room 2.

School is very busy at present with a busy fortnight of extra events, including the NZ ballet company visit next Monday. Classrooms are very much in the groove and teachers are very pleased with how things are ticking over. Keep in touch with the classroom blogs for the latest news from each room.

This week is national primary science week and it coincided with an ERo report on the teaching of science in primary schools. Aren't we lucky to have Barbara Ryan leading our science programme at Muritai.

A reminder that Muritai School has a facebook page where you can receive short snippets of our highlights and regular updates.

Early next term we welcome back Hayley Skilton from maternity leave into room 9 while we farewell Sheena Naik who will be going on maternity leave.  A big thank you to Linda Brewer, one of our regular relievers for teaching in room 2 recently.

I was very proud of our students who played a key part in the Anzac Day celebrations. Our kapa haka roopu recognised  the contribution of the parade with a challenge  and then responded to the Benediction with the waiata 'He Honore' - a hymn for peace. Our school captains Tom Walsh and Celine Malama had the honour of laying the remembrance wreath this year.

We are all very proud of Margo Montes de Oca for her achievement winning the inaugural RSA memorial essay on 'The Dambusters'. She walked away with some impressive prizes and a fantastic trophy.

This was no easy challenge and Margo is to be admired, not just for the quality of her work but the persistence she displayed in getting the job done. It really is an extremely high quality piece of work.
You can read her essay by clicking here.

Thank you to the Home and school for these. They have tidied up the school nicely.

This morning the mime actor Svargo performed for the whole school. Svargo is a professional mime actor, originally from Berlin,who now tours Australia and New Zealand doing his show ‘Once upon a Mime’. He amazed the audience with his convincing and very funny performance. Everybody thoroughly enjoyed the expierience and we all hope he will come and perform to us again.   Margo Montes de Oca

We had a wonderful day at our cross country event yesterday in Days Bay. Well organised by Mr McKay and his team, the quality of the running was fantastic. Children ran superbly and really showed off a strong school spirit as they tried their very best to do well. Distance running is not everyone's cup of tea and children were encouraged to set some goals to help them get through the challenge. Thanks to our year 7 and 8 children who ran alongside younger children to help them get through the event.

Click here for a 10 minute photostory. 

Congratulations to our place getters at the cross country -
Year 3 girls - 1st- Grace Manson, 2nd- Chelsea Summers, 3rd- Evie Wilson
Year 3 boys - 1st- Henry Evans, 2nd- Jack Evans, 3rd- Finn Morley
Year 4 girls - 1st- Charlotte Humpries, 2nd- Charlotte McFarlane, 3rd- Mia Lowe
Year 4 boys - 1st- Flynn Healy, 2nd- Theo Jones, 3rd- Bruno Penney
Year 5 girls - 1st- Macey Caughley, 2nd- Ella Giles, 3rd- Grace Olsen
Year 5 boys - 1st- Andrew Sutcliffe, 2nd- Max Hahn, 3rd-Lachlan Bourgeois
Year 6 girls - 1st- Grace Allan, 2nd- Milly Griffiths, 3rd- Mary Heath 
Year 6 boys - 1st- Liam Lamb, 2nd- Ben Grenfell, 3rd- Jack Healy
Year 7 girls - 1st- Maya Hahn, 2nd- Ruby Burley-Smith, 3rd- Frankie Middleton
Year 7 boys - 1st- Wilson Quinn, 2nd- Harry Crawford, 3rd- Gabriel Barber
Year 8 girls - 1st- Hailey Griffiths, 2nd- Kia Jewell, 3rd- Zara Costello
Year 8 boys - 1st- Gus Reece, 2nd- Moss Grenfell, 3rd- Piri Bradshaw 

Best of luck to the school team that will compete at the zones for year 4-6 and year 7-8.

The Junior school Cross Country will be held at Bishop Park on Tuesday 22 May from 9.30am.  The postponement date will be Thursday 24 May.  The children would love to have you support them at this competition.

This little project run out of the senior school keeps chugging on. Latest articles are on speed stacking, Anzac Day, the Police challenge and an article with Mrs Ryan on the butterfly garden.

Click here to view the Muritai TV blogsite.

The 'Hooked on Books' programme has started. Thank you very much to all the parents who are giving up their time to help with this important programme.  We need two more people to assist children on this programme.  If you are able to listen to children read on Tuesdays or alternate Mondays can you please let Mrs Buckley know.  You can contact Maureen Buckley via e-mail on or call in at the office and leave your details with Carole or Sue.

Maureen Buckley will be holding a series of information evenings in room 3 at 7pm.  The first one is on Wednesday 16 May and will explain the writing, spelling and handwriting process with the second evening being on Wednesday 30 May to cover the reading process.  The final evening is on Tuesday 12 June which will be about mathematics. This is an opportunity for you to see what your child does at school in these curriculum areas, answer any questions you may have and give you some ideas to support your child's learning at home. If you have any queries, please do not hesitate to contact Maureen Buckley.

The school's medical room usually has spare underpants, shorts and tops but at the moment we are very short on everything.  It seems that we have not had our spare clothing returned to us after handing them out.  If you have any old but useable underpants, shorts or trackpants for 5 to 10 year olds, we would love to have them.  Drop them off at the office.  

Parents can now register for FREE parent access to Mathletics by going to You will need your child's username and password to register. Once registered you will be able to view your child's progress and certificates and you can also choose to have an automatic weekly email sent to you.

For instruction on how to register, look at the Parent Registration Letter on the Noticeboard of the school website.

To support Oxfam's "Fair Trade Fortnight" the Senior Charity Group are organising a Whacky Hair Day THIS  Friday (the 11th of May).
Students are encouraged to colour, accessorise, and make their hair look totally whacky! There will be a (Fair Trade) prize for the most whacky hair on the day. Everyone who chooses to participate is asked to bring a gold coin donation. Donations will go towards helping Oxfam New Zealand to continue its work in supporting struggling farmers in the developing world.
We can't wait to see your whacky hair!
- Charity Group

Ruth Humphries from World Vision spoke to the school at the last assembly about the 40 hour famine focus this year on Mali.

To celebrate the end of "Fair Trade Fortnight" on Friday 18th May the Senior School Charity Group will be setting up a Fair Trade Coffee stall in the office foyer. Fair Trade coffee, tea and hot chocolate will be on sale between 8.30 and 9am. Each hot drink will cost $1.50. Proceeds will go to Oxfam New Zealand.  

A selection of baked goods will also be on sale to help Year 8 students raise money towards the end of year Abel Tasman Camp

Mon 14 May - NZ Ballet visiting a.m.
Tue 15 May - Y5-6 Zone football; Y3 to Marine Education centre
Fri 18 May - Y4 to Marine Education centre; School assembly 1.40
Mon 21 May - Y8 Girls Gardasil immunizations
Tue 22 May - Y1-2 Cross country at Bishops park; Y7-8 Zone cross country; BoT meeting 7.30
Fri 25 May - World vision  famine weekend
Mon 28 May - Young Leaders day (Y8 students)
Wed 30 May - Y4-6 Zone cross country
Fri 1 June - School assembly 1.40

Great start to the season with a good win over Hutt Intermediate at basketball by our Year 8 boys (12 - 52) ( Henry Griffiths, Moss Grenfell, Piri Bradshaw, Elliot Hawes, Cahon Holden and Xav Manson)

Teams have started well and have been progressing through the grading rounds.  Once they have all been graded, the competition starts in earnest.  

Eastbourne Market is just around the corner on Sunday 13 May 2012, 11am - 2pm.  Bring Mum along to find a treat for her!  Registrations are still
being accepted for stalls - $30 for a stall, $10 for a child's stall.   Sign
up in the foyer of the Eastbourne Library.  See our Facebook page

Need a babysitter?
I am a 20 year old ex-Muritai School student currently looking for evening and weekend babysitting work to help support my university studies.  Local references available.  Call or text Cassie Richards on 021 025 64503.

Fun Mandarin for 5 to12 year olds,starting this week in Eastbourne
Come to a free trial class:
When:  on Wednesday 9th May, 4:30pm, or next Wednesday at 4:30pm 
Where:  St Ronan's Church Hall 
For more information ring Stefi Plimmer-Blattner on 562 8211, email

Swiss Ball Classes
Eastbourne Croquet Club rooms
Mon 10.15am, Tues 7.30pm, Wed 9am, Thur 7.30pm, Frid 9am
Beginners welcome.  562 8889

St Bernard's College Open Day
St Bernard's College will be holding an open day on Saturday 19 May 2012 from 10am until 2pm.  Prospective students and their parents are invited to visit during these hours to find out more about St Bernard's College and what it can provide.  St Bernard's College is a Year 7-13 Catholic boys' college.  For further information, contact the office at:  183 Waterloo Rd, Lower Hutt.  Ph 560 9250.  Website: www.sbc.schoolnz  Email: