Friday September 26 2012

Naumai e te whanau o te kura Muritai 
Tena koutou katoa

As we approach the end of term we should be very proud of our achievements of late. There just seems to be something happening everyday which shows that life at Muritai is certainly not boring…far from it. Term 3 is always exciting and the Olympic Games have given a nice background to all the other things we have been able to do across the term, at every level.

Term 4 and the run through to the end of the year is always very busy. Our term plan looks very manageable but the teaching staff do have a number of  administrative requirements to attend to as we close off 2012 and prepare for 2013. 

One thing remains important however and that is to keep in close contact with your child's class teacher. Our next reporting round is at the end of the year with written reports but you may feel that it is necessary to touch base as the term goes along to get feedback on your child's progress. Our doors are always open for this to happen and it is a regular occurrence.

Last weekend we saw the first publication of primary and intermediate schools student achievement results based on National Standards data from 2011. These were aggregated and published by Fairfax media and obtained through the Official Information Act. This week the Ministry of Education releases their data on the Education Counts website which you can access here after Friday.

Looking at it in a comparative setting Muritai School results looked excellent and we were one of the very few schools to show strengths in all of the 3 areas of national standards – reading, writing and maths. This year we are tracking to at least match those figures as our children continue to grow as both learners and people. There is much public discussion at present about presenting schools results in this way and how schools achieve the results they do while running vastly different programmes. At Muritai we acknowledge that we draw our students from a local community that are very interested and involved in the well-being of their children and I like to think that the partnership between the children, their parents and the teachers is a strong one. This is a strong indicator of student success and one that we hope to continually nurture. I do think however that central to this partnership also involves high quality teaching and as always I am very pleased with the work the teaching team continues to do to bring out the best in children as they grow from being little people to children that are ready for the next steps in their lives. The variety of experiences at Muritai adds to the big picture of achievement in the basics.

The presented data does not necessarily share the context of which the results are achieved and so I invite you to browse the school  website, view classroom blogs other than your child's or read the Annual Report 2011 to get a better understanding of how things work at Muritai. Click here to read the Annual Report 2011.

On Tuesday we had a wonderful day at Muritai. The year 7- 8 children, under the direction of Mr Devenport had organised a Mini Olympics with a variety of fun events in a competitive setting. Children were separated into countries and with the ages from year 1 to year 8 it was a great opportunity to see the spirit of our caring culture in action. For the record China won the gold medal, Kenya the silver and Greece the bronze. You can see photos of the day be clicking here and there will be a movie on Muritai TV shortly.

The Board of Trustees have set the term dates for 2013.

We are starting the school year on Monday 4th January and our last school day will be Friday 20th December.

Term 1 - Monday 4 February - Friday 19 April – 51 days
Term 2 - Monday 6 May - Friday 12 July      - 48 days
Term 3 - Monday 29 July - Friday 27 September   - 45 days
Term 4 - Monday 14 October - Friday 20 December – 48 days 

As we are required to complete 192 contact days there will be 2 teacher only days and these are at Queen's Birthday and at Labour Weekend.
I just wanted to pay a tribute to the teaching team and children for putting together the school production last week. Sadly I was away last week at a principal’s conference, but managed to sneek a preview before I left. I have received many emails of congratulations which is lovely and I know the teaching staff are very proud of what the children were able to achieve. A special mention to Kirsten Berry as the director for pulling the whole thing together for another special Muritai School show.

We hope to have the new sandpit up and running for next term. The sand has gone in and the fence and shade cloth goes in next week. This project has been funded by the Home and School and we have been lucky to get two trust grants from Pub Charity and Pelorus Trust to help top up the Home and School contribution for this wonderful resource. The kids will love it! Tom, Elliot, Dorian, Gareth AND Jared joined Mark and myself in laying drainage and spreading the sand. 

Congratulations to our school band 'The Bumnotes' who have won the NZ Bandquest 2012 title. There were 800 musicians entered into this competition and our group has won the big prize. After entering and winning the online section of the Bandquest regional challenge they were judged to be the NZ champions and are awaiting the results of the national finals which we will here shortly. Their success sees them win $2400 of musical equipment via the competition sponsors the Rockshop. You can view their online entry here.

A very exciting development for the school is the acquisition of 32 Ipads for our classrooms. This is the first wave of new technology that we are working towards acquiring for the children and their learning with more to come in 2013 after the Carnival fundraising. These 32 Ipads have generously been donated by the Home and School and will be up and running in classrooms next term. A huge thanks to all the Home and School team and their supporters for their hard work raising funds for these valuable resources.

Our Home and School Committee organise hot dogs for the two winter terms each year and today was the last day for hot dogs for 2012.  We would like to thank Narelle Ferrier for organising the roster, ordering the hot dogs and buns and ensuring that this fundraiser has worked so smoothly and to all the parents who helped prepare them.  


Term 4 signals warmer weather (hopefully) and the return of hats at school.  Can you please ensure your child comes to school at the beginning of term 4 with a wide brimmed hat to be worn at all play times.  You may also like to consider putting sunblock on them before they come to school.  

Well done to the year 5-6 rugby team who had a convincing day out at Boulcott School, comfortably running out the winners.

Macey Caughley, Gus Reece and Maya Hahn all competed in the lower North , top of the South cross country competition yesterday with the children all finishing in the top 15. Congratulations to these fine runners.


Yula Kozintsova

Don't rush to change your child's wardrobe if you have items with lots of life.  Sometimes you need to 'save' your child's favourite clothes and sometimes you simply need to adjust a new item.
Jeans are worn out or need repair?  Let's give them new life!
Pants, jeans, dresses, skirt hems - lengthening or shortening. Sleeves - lengthening or shortening.  Knee and elbow patches.  Zipper replacement.
Phone: Yula Kozintsova - 562 8982 or 022 034 9033
4/264 Muritai Road, Eastbourne

East Harbour Kindergarten

Eastbourne Historical Calendars will be on sale at selected village shops and from the school from 15th October. The calendars are $15 each and are a fundraiser for the East Harbour Kindergarten.

Movie Preview:
Dayspring Ministries Trust is screening  the popular French film "The Intouchables", on Wednesday 17 October at the Light House Cinema, 52 Beach Street Petone.  The film is based on a true story of the friendship between a quadriplegic millionaire (Francois Cluzet) and his ex-con caretaker Omar Sy). It is an "irreverent, uplifting comedy about friendship, trust and human possibility".  The Intouchables depicts an unlikely camaraderie rooted in honesty and humor between two individuals who, on the surface, would seem to have nothing in common.”  The film has broken box office records in its native France and across Europe.  Start time is 7.30pm for dessert and 8pm for the screening. Tickets cost $25 per person.  Funds raised go to support the work of Seahawk a 53ft yacht  which delivers scriptures, clothing, children's books and reading glasses  to the remote islands of the Pacific.  Contact Mike Cornish ( , or Dianne Thomas Bryan ( for tickets."

Thursday 21 September

Welcome to our new students - Joshua Langridge, Jay and Ruby Jarman, Felix Ford-Robinson, Fern Cameron, Iain and Alexander Ross.

There are a lot of tired but happy children today after a week of performing.  The performances have been amazing and many parents who have not experienced our shows before have been blown away with the professionalism of it all. It is a real team effort to bring the whole show together, especially as every child in the school is involved. But pulling it all together is a blast and overall we are thrilled with the outcome. A huge thank you to our director Kirsten Berry and the teaching team, to parents and friends of the school and to our children who performed so well. A special thanks to Talita Archibald of Musical Stars for generously supplying costumes and to Lisa Daniel and Narelle Ferrier who helped paint the backdrops.  Thanks also to the Home and School for organising the pre-show drinks and nibbles and to Blue Carrot who are supplying dinner for our staff tonight.

What a magnificent job our students did in Artsplash last week.
We had over 100 students sing in the massed choir and they were outstanding! They sang their wee hearts out and looked great all decked out in their school t-shirts! We also had a group of students showcase their creations in the Wearable Arts section of the show - Lily Griffiths, Ruby Brandwood, Georgia Cotter, Rose Scott-Billings, Carlotta Fegert and Rachel Aislabie. These girls were excellent up on stage and it was lovely to have them volunteer to be part of the event.

Our star guitarist and singer, Gus Reece did us proud! Gus was invited to do the guitar solo and singing solo for the Queen Song, ‘Somebody To Love’. This was an amazing opportunity for Gus and he slotted in with the band very easily. He was dressed as Freddy Mercury, strutted out on stage, guitar in hand and proceeded to wow everyone! He did 4 performances and just got better and better! His final performance was in the concert where Muritai were part of the choir and this made it extra special for both the choir and Gus. The musical director, Ella Hanify and band were most complimentary and said not only was he super talented but what a lovely boy he was to work with too. You can check Gus out on

We had another star performer but this time it was in the Dance show. Kia Jewell, one of Year 8 girls, did a spectacular solo dance performance which the audience were blown away by. Kia also performs a solo dance in the school production (which she choreographed herself!) Kia is a delight to work with too, she is so humble and low key about her outstanding ability. She is amazingly talented and will be one to watch in the future!

Muritai was also represented in the visual Art exhibition in the Renouf Foyer at the Michael Fowler Centre. We had work from Year 2, 5, 6, 7 and 8 and many teachers and parents from other schools commented on the high standard of their work.

Congratulations to all our Artsplash performers. I was so proud of each and every one of you and really appreciate all your hard work and energy.
Ruth Hooke

Enrolments for the holiday programme closed today to enable our Manager to organise staffing and bookings.  We will accept enrolments next week if there are still spaces available for that particular day.  No enrolment will be accepted once the programme commences.

Mel is also looking for craft supplies, stuff that can be recycled easily from home like: jars, material scraps, plastic cups, plastic bags (thick coloured ones like farmers bags etc are preferable to supermarket bags), magazines, wool etc. Please drop any items you think would be of use into the school office or at ASC in the school hall.


Eastbourne Cricket
Junior Registration Details
Registration is now open online and will also be available in person at the HW Shortt clubrooms on Saturday 15th & 22nd Sep 10-12pm
Contact Michael Ferrier on 0212 820477 or

House needed
We are a professional family looking to rent a 4/5 bedroom house in Eastbourne.  (We would also consider a large 3 bed!).  We are currently renting in Days Bay and looking to move early to mid-January.  We have no pets, 3 well behaved children.  We can provide excellent references.  Please contact Hannah on 022 130 6640/562 0215 or Mike on 021 289 8804.

Mana Education Centre is proud to launch Learn Zone, our family-friendly shop full of educational products – great for gifts and to support children’s learning.  We are open through the school holidays and on

Saturday mornings (beginning 29 September).

Monday – Friday 8.30am-5.00pm
Late Thursday to 6.00pm (during school terms only)
Saturday 8.00am-1.00pm

LearnZone at Mana Education Centre,
3 Serlby Place (next to the Post Office)
P 04 2377318

Pet Adoption Day 
Hutt Valley High School's SWITCH - Students With Initiative To Change Humanity are holding a Pet Adoption Day.  It is being held on Sunday 23 September from 12 - 3pm in the Hutt Valley High School Hall, which will be adequately sign posted on the day. The Wellington SPCA will be bringing a collection of cats and dogs down for adoption, and it is a great Sunday afternoon outing, with the opportunity to meet members of the SPCA as well as spend some time with puppies and kittens!

Spring Knack Craft Market
Saturday 15th September, 9.30am-2.30pm
Berhampore School Hall, Britomart Street, Berhampore

Celebrate spring by buying homemade treats and gifts! A fantastic range of beautiful, original, NZ made craft, and lots using recycled, eco-friendly materials. Forty stalls of brand new crafters and seasoned regulars offering great gifts, treats and shopping opportunities. Fresh coffee and hot food - African, Cajun, Chinese - great music, plenty of parking, and we have eftpos!

For information: Justine -,
(04) 972 4099 or 027 381 3409
knack craft market now on Facebook 

Wednesday 5 September

Naumai e te whanau o te kura Muritai 
Tena koutou katoa

Welcome to our new students - Arleena Lamb (room 16), Lucy Dungan (Room 9), William Dungan (room 16), Barney Marsden (room 15) and Jack Marsden (room 3)

I can't believe that it is week 8 already. The school is jumping along with a full range of activities in the last week or two that has seen children in and out and round about. This time of year sees a bit of a juggling act for the teaching staff as they keep the learning going while still developing such a major school production. It's a nice challenge and we often see 'different' children shine in this different environment. It is a lot of fun too!

With artsplash next week and then the school production we are all going to have to manage our children's tiredness. With the longer days arriving we often add an extra event to our day but please remember that the children have a very full day at school and need plenty of time to recharge their batteries. We would rather the children rest at home and have energy for school than have a full on after school and evening and then have to rest up at school!


Muritai School has registered to participate in the 'New Zealand ShakeOut' on 26th September at 9.26 am.

This will be the largest ever earthquake drill in New Zealand. The students will practice Drop, Cover, Hold and discuss safety procedures. This is an opportunity for us as a school to rehearse our procedures in the event of a significant earthquake and to practice our knowledge of what to do if one occurs.

You may like to check out the website to make sure you, your family and your co-workers know what to do when the next earthquake happens by registering to take part in this event using the link below.


The school production rehearsals are well underway with children practising their moves everyday.  This is the world premiere of Graham Base's book - Uno's Garden, a very popular book about the environment that most children have read or been read to. Everyone is gearing up to present a fantastic show.

Tickets are on sale at the school office.  Adults are $7.50, senior citizens and children are $5.00 each.  A child is classified as anyone at of pre-school or school age.

Show times -
Tuesday 18 September - matinee 1.00 and evening 7.00
Wednesday 19 September - evening 7.00
Thursday 20 September - evening 7.00

Home and School will be serving nibbles and providing drinks at the school production. They need some help with preparing and serving the food. If you are able to help in any way, either on the night or with preparations, please contact Michelle Fisher on 04 562 8877 or email or leave your name with Carole and Sue in the school office.

Last week the 12 finalists from the Muritai Senior School Science Fair went into Victoria University to exhibit their projects at the NIWA Wellington Regional Science Fair.  These students were chosen because of their outstanding achievement at our school Science Fair in Term 2

Each student spoke to a pair of judges, answering questions about the scientific method they used and the conclusions they drew from their research. 

We are proud to announce that Finn Connell won the New Zealand Chemistry Association Prize in recognition of his outstanding project on how Vitamin C deteriorates in different milk.  Also Margo Montes de Oca received a Highly Commended award for her investigation on whether finger prints are inherited. 

A special thanks to Melissa Coton for organising the day and supporting students throughout the process.

Last Thursday Muritai School competed in the Lower and Upper Hutt BP Challenge at Hutt Intermediate School. The BP Challenge is a hands-on competition where students work in groups of four to design and develop solutions to problems using easily resourced materials.

This year Muritai School entered a year 4 and year 5/6 team in the competition. Before attending the event both teams worked exceptionally hard to prepare themselves for the day they were also required to complete a 'known' challenge, which was a bird feeder. Once at the event both team's bird feeders were judged according to a set of criteria, they also needed to complete an 'unknown' challenge in a limited amount of time. Both teams were very successful the year 4 team were awarded first place for their bird feeder and the year 5/6 team were awarded third place for their bird feeder.  Congratulations to both our teams -
Year 4 - Rufus Rusholme-Cobb, Flynn Healy, Fergus Hart, Bennett Parker
Year 5-6 - Ella Tait, Pablo Montes de Oca, Charlotte Wilson, Grace Ogilvie

I have been so impressed with Shannyn and her group of helpers – Mia, Samantha and Rachel.  For the past two weeks they have been cleaning out all the winter growth in the Year 3-4 Garden and preparing the garden for new spring plants.  What impressed me most was the fact that they were self-motivated to make a difference, without any prompting from myself or other teachers.

Well done girls, you are showing how students at Muritai School, no matter how young, are making a difference and contributing towards our being a ‘Green-Gold’ Enviro-School.                         
Richard Dobson 

All year 5-6 children have been participating in their annual speech competition. As you know public speaking is not everyone;s cup of tea but it is a skill to learn. Even just writing a speech is a challenge. From 120 speeches 8 children were selected for the finals - 
Year 5 - Phoebe, Lucy, Andrew and Max
Year 6 -  Milly, Louie, Hannah and Harrison

 The quality of the finalists was excellent and it was very tricky to pick winners but congratulations to Andrew Sutcliffe who won the year 5 category and Milly Griffiths who won the year 6 category.

The overall 2012 Year 5/6 speech champion and the winner of the R.L. Harrison Cup is Milly Griffiths.  

We are very pleased with our latest ICAS Exam results in Spelling and Writing. We have some extremely talented writers at Muritai!


High Distinction
Margarita Montes de Oca 

Yasmin Kerr, Rufus Rusholme Cobb, Rachel Vass, Sally Bird
Ethan Hester, Bruno Penney, Lucy Crawford, Tim Harris, Samantha Morphew, Rose Scott-Billing, Maya Hahn, Harry Crawford, Lauren Redpath


High Distinction
Margarita Montes de Oca 

Rose Scott Billing, Kia Jewell, Ella Tait, Lauren Redpath, Pablo Montes de Oca
Seth Patel, Ruby Brandwood, Grace Olsen

Thanks to everyone who bought an Entertainment Book this year.  We sold 143 books in total, raising $1,716 for our school.  If you haven't already registered the card that came with your book, it's a good idea to do so as extra bonus offers will be sent to you via email.  The Home and School Committee are planning to put the money raised towards a fantastic sandpit for the children to enjoy.  So thanks again for your support.


On Monday, some year 7 and 8 students went to Chilton to meet an international author called John Boyne. John is an Irish novelist who has published many books but is best known for his incredible book ‘The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas', which many Y7-8 children have read.  He was really interesting and had some really great advice about being a writer. While we were there, we were able to have a glimpse from his latest book called ‘The Terrible Thing That Happened to Barnaby Brocket’. At the very end, we were lucky enough to have some books signed by John Boyne himself and donated to our school library.  Thanks to Mrs Allen who organised and to Emma Daley who helped with transport. It was a great way to spend the afternoon!
By Celine Malama

The last month has seen many of our ex staff welcome new additions to their families. Some of you may remember these staff - Kate Donnelly, Kim Cookson (Thompson), Holly Edwards (Fulforth) and Stephen Eames - have all had newborns in the last 2 months. Mothers and fathers all coping reasonably well!!

Central Zone Hockey Tournament
Last week a group of year 5/6 students represented Muritai School at the Central Zone Primary Hockey Tournament. The girls squad played exceptionally well winning all of their round robin games to claim the top spot in the girl's section. The boys squad narrowly lost their first game but rallied well to win their remaining games to claim second place in their section.
The combined efforts of both teams ensured Muritai School finished as the overall champions on the day and thus were deservedly awarded the Central Zone Cup!


Wednesday 12 September - Artsplash rehearsal 11.30 and performance 7.45
Friday 14 September - School assembly 1.45
Tuesday 18 September - Production - matinee 1.00 and evening 7.00
Wednesday 19 September - Production - evening 7.00
Thursday 20 September - Production - evening 7.00
Wednesday 26 September - Great NZ Shakeout 9.26am
Friday 28 September - School assembly - end of term assembly


Junior Tennis

Registration day for playing Junior Interclub Tennis is on Saturday September 15th at the clubhouse between 10am-12pm and Wednesday September 19th between 4pm-5pm. The cost payable at registration is $90. The interclub competitions are played on Saturday mornings starting on October 20th.  
Any questions please contact Sue McCormack 

If you are interested in tennis coaching for the summer season, please contact the coach Andy Wheeler directly -

House Wanted
Christchurch family of five (3 primary-aged children) seek house to sit/rent in Eastbourne for a few days next holidays.
Arrive Oct 4th (evening) - depart Oct 8th.  Non smokers - clean, tidy and respectful. 
Happy to feed pets : )
Please contact John  021 417 289.  Thank you!!!!