Principals Desk

Thursday, November 30th, 2017

‘Wonder’ the Film

I was fortunate enough to watch a pre-release showing of the new Julia Robert’s film ‘Wonder’ last week. Although this is a PG film, I would be happy for my children when they were in Years 5-6 to watch this film. (However, parents need to read the reviews and make up their own minds). At present, 6-14 are reading the novel ‘Wonder’ written by RJ Palacio. I believe this film would be a great opportunity for parents to take their children to watch this film. The storyline is excellent and message about bullying and acceptance of others is worth parents having a discussion with their children after the film. I left the cinema uplifted and positive. NB: I do not receive royalties from the film maker or cinemas. I believe ‘Wonder’ is out next week in Victorian cinemas. I would love to hear any feedback from parents who see the film with their child.

Mathematics Achievement Success

This year, we had nineteen Year 6 students compete in the Maths Olympiad competition. This competition is open to all schools in Australia. Again, this year, we achieved some excellent results. Overall, our team was placed in the top 10% of schools across Australia. The school received a shield for this great achievement. We need to acknowledge Fletcher P, Maia R-G, Thomas Mc and Lachlan W for scoring in the top 25% of students. Pierre F, Max C and Zach T for scoring in the top 20%. UJ B-B, Maxwell P, Andrew T, Bobby B, Damon W, Rachel C, Baheer A and Parker C for scoring in the top 10% of students and finally, the following students achieved a perfect score on all five tests. Congratulations, Sejal D, Mitchell P, Brady T and Lenny Z. A huge thank you must also go to Miss McClure for organising this event and working with the students to develop their maths skills

I Sea, I Care Award

Our I Sea, I Care ambassadors completed their final presentation at this week’s assembly. Matt, Jessica, Abbey and Brianna, have worked admirably over the year and have provided much useful information to our school community on being more environmentally conscious. This year our school was awarded the ‘Fundraiser of the Year’ school. Well done to all involved.

Foundation Information Night

Thursday, November 23rd, 2017

On Tuesday night, we held the second of our Foundation Information Nights for 2018 Foundation parents. Again, this year we decided to change the format of the evening. This year, two of our Foundation students hosted the evening. Firstly, Shayla, from F-07, welcomed the parents and introduced myself to the audience. She gave a very detailed overview of Foundation and how much fun she has at school. Next came Aiden from F-09, who gave an account of life in his first year of school. Aiden went into much detail explaining the various aspects of life as a new student and capably THRASSed out words. Both students did a fantastic job and demonstrated that we certainly have some excellent students in our school. Mrs Epstein then went into how the school and home can work together to develop a resilient child. At the end of the formal part of the evening, the parents were invited to meet with the 2018 child’s classroom teacher in their new classrooms. Feedback from parents on the night suggested a very successful and productive evening. I am sure that our Preptastic program will put all of our new Foundation students in good stead for school life at Park Ridge Primary School.

Chistmas Concert

Wednesday, November 8th, 2017

A whole school Christmas Concert will take place on Wednesday 6 December from 5:45pm – 7:00pm on the school oval. A stage and sound system will ensure the performance is seen and heard by all. School Council have assessed the costs involved and have generously elected to run this as a free event for families. This is a great chance for our whole community to come together and celebrate the great achievements of the year. All of the students will be performing with their year levels, with a special performance from our School Choir. A notice containing finer details i.e. costuming will come home shortly.

A Barbeque Dinner will be available from 4:30pm – 5:30pm. Please bring your own chairs and/or picnic rugs. Please be aware, if you choose to bring chairs you may be seated towards the back/side.  You are of course welcome to bring your own dinner. Please note, this is an alcohol free event.

Effort and Positive Mindset

Thursday, October 19th, 2017

Effort Equals Growth

It is a pretty obvious equation, Effort = Growth. The more effort you devote to a task, the better the result will be. Whether it’s learning to hit a golf ball, lose some weight or learn a new language, the equation is still the same. Effort = Growth. Research supports this concept that we need to recognise and reward the effort our children put into their learning. We need to establish a culture at Park Ridge Primary School that effort will be recognised and celebrated. However, effort cannot be selective. We don’t want to see students choosing when they put effort into a task because they like certain things. Effort has to be displayed whether you are good or ordinary at a task or whether you like or do not like doing something.

Four Questions to Ask at the Dinner Table Tonight

At Park Ridge Primary School, we are committed to embedding Positive Education into all aspects of our school lives. I am sure that you have asked your child after school, ‘What happened at school today?’ or ‘What did you do at school today?’ usually the answer is NOTHING. Listed below are four questions you can throw into the dinner conversation.

What is it you’ve done today that you’d like to be acknowledged for? This question helps us feel appreciated and helps us recognise each other. With children, it’s a great way to help boost self-esteem.

What are you grateful for today? Showing gratitude has profound effects on mental wellbeing. When you constantly show your appreciation and gratitude, you find more good things fall into your lap.

What act of kindness did you see / perform today? By asking this question, you’re asking your children to be aware of the beauty of the world. You’re also teaching them to be consciously kind to others and to see kindness as a natural way of being.

What was great about today/ What magical thing did you see? Allowing someone to talk about something that made them really happy lets them know that you’re interested and involved in their life. It also increases happiness levels by getting you focused on positive things.

These type of positive questions help to develop a positive mindset.

Welcome back to another exciting term

Thursday, October 12th, 2017

It surprises me how quickly the year goes. Although we are three quarters the way through the year, there is still lots of learning to take place. Our main focus will always be on the learning. However, we want to produce students with a strong moral purpose.

I came across this quote during the holidays. I thought it summed up why we do Positive Education at Park Ridge Primary School

“If you want happiness for an hour — take a nap.’
If you want happiness for a day — go fishing.
If you want happiness for a year — inherit a fortune.
If you want happiness for a lifetime — help someone else.”
Chinese Proverb
For the past seven weeks I was given the privilege of acting as a Senior Education Improvement Leader in the Yarra Valley, where I worked with principals to improve learning in their schools. My systems learning that I gained from the experience has made me a better educational leader, however, it reinforced to me that Park Ridge Primary is the place for me and that I return with a more determined focus of making our school the best school not only in Knox but within the Region.

During my time away, I was also provided with the opportunity by the Department to visit schools in Shanghai. Shanghai is regarded as one of the world’s best education systems. Although Chinese schools are very different to Australian schools, there were a number of their initiatives that I will be implementing across the school to improve learning.

2018 Parent Contributions via Compass

School Council has discussed and passed the 2018 Parent and Voluntary Contributions.  School Council decided on a small increase of $10.00 for the year.  All information regarding the Contributions is now available on Compass. All payments will be required to be made through the Compass program. Once full payment is made, Stationary Packs will be available for collection from the office, dates for collection can be found on Compass. Please find the details of the Contributions below:

Student Materials/Essential Student Learning Items (Stationary Pack and Classroom Supplies) $210.00

Optional Items/Core Curriculum Items $60.00

Voluntary  Contributions School Council Facilities (Recommended $50.00 per family)

Excursion levy as per year level