Newsletter Number 15 • Wednesday 2nd September 2020

From the Principal

Birthdays should be celebrated and this week our school community celebrated the 150th birthday of Maria Montessori who was born on 31 August, 1870. Many are familiar with her extraordinary life as a physician, anthropologist and pedagogue. 

She opened the first Montessori school—the Casa dei Bambini, or Children’s House—in Rome on January 6 1907, which ultimately became the Montessori method of education based upon Maria Montessori’s scientific observations of those children. Subsequently, she travelled the world, wrote extensively about her approach to education and was nominated three times for the Nobel Peace Prize (1949, 1950, and 1951). Today, there are 22,000 Montessori schools across 110 countries, an incredible example of how one person’s actions can affect the lives of so many. It was wonderful to come together on Monday and celebrate the life of Maria Montessori and it has been fantastic to see how her birthday has been celebrated around the world. 

You may like to learn more about Maria Montessori through the eyes of her great granddaughter in a video made to commemorate her 150th birthday.

Cathy France


Celebrating 150 years of Maria Montessori 🎈

‘Celebrate’ is our theme for 2020 and what better way to celebrate than with a 150th Birthday! 

Students celebrated Maria Montessori’s 150th birthday with a morning assembly where our Year 6 leaders staged a play about her life. Special thanks to our Year 6 leaders who ran birthday activities which all students attended across lunchtime. Of course no birthday is complete without 2 very large cakes and an exceptionally loud rendition of Happy Birthday! A special mention to Vanessa Baryczka who assisted with cupcakes for the students who have dietary requirements, it was very much appreciated.

Happy Birthday Maria! 🎂

Cycle News

Infant Program

The children are enjoying mat time with Ester and practicing their listening skills, following instruction and concentrating. The book, Brown Bear, was hiding inside the box and is always a favourite.


Every second-year preschool children participate in the very popular ‘Wheels Day’. This is an opportunity for students to practice their gross motor skills and to develop their enthusiasm for physical activity. It is also a fun social experience for the children that ties in with our current study of simple machines.  

“I liked pumping my bike up and cleaning it.” – Scarlett

“I loved going through the carwash!” – Rachel

“I liked riding my scooter fast and going around the corners!” – Reggie

“I liked being the stop man and dancing!” – Charlie

Cycle 1

Cycle 1 students have been making efforts to reduce the use of plastic through our Practical Life Program. So far this year most of the children have made a sight word bag and recently the children in Ruth and Lauren's class have been decorating a bag to hold their reader folders. We have fortunately been supported by a parent who made the sturdy bags.

Jasper said, "My mum made them!" Johnathan explained the way he felt about sewing with a thumbs up. Matilda told us, "I've sewn my place mat and my reader folder bag."  Ren added that, "Roxy showed me how to sew!" Amber said, "I sewed my name on my reader bag." Finally, Sahara added "I love sewing!"

Cycle 2

As part of the transition program for Cycle 1 students moving to Cycle 2, we shared our snack with Ruth & Lauren’s class. It only took a short while for the Cycle 1 children to relax and enjoy the visit!

Over the past 5 weeks we have enjoyed the presence of Clinton Donald, a pre-service student teacher. The children were pleased to be able to show him our Montessori equipment, and Arthur really enjoyed showing him the checker board.

As part of our North America unit, we have begun to study famous people from the United States. We began with Martin Luther King and learned about his impact on the world. As a class we read a famous quote from his “I Have a Dream” speech and discussed how we would like to change the world. The children wrote down the dreams they have for our school, the community and the world. Mackenzie’s dream for the world is to “treat everyone kindly no matter what” and Indigo’s dream for the community is for “everyone to have a home.” 

Cycle 3

For the last 10 years Cycle 3 has been running a values program called Service Learning. The program focus is giving service. There are two parts to the program - School Service and Community Service. School Service is giving service to the school community and Community Service is giving service to the wider community. This year we have had to focus on school service and put a hold on volunteering in the wider community. 

Students divide into small groups, finding other students in the Cycle 3 community that have similar interests in the type of service they would like to give to the school community. The children run lunchtime activities for three or more weeks for small groups of Cycle 1 or 2 students. This involves them writing a formal letter to a school staff member asking them to be a mentor, planning the activity they will offer, writing a lesson plan, running the session and evaluating their lesson, thinking about what worked well and what needs to be adjusted for the next week. Students practice an extensive amount of virtues, such as cooperation, organisation, patience, teamwork, resilience and of course giving service. Some of the sessions being offered this year have been - cooking, making bird feeders, sport clinics, stop motion animation, dance classes  &  IT tutorials.

Cycle 4

In a “normal” year the Feeding the Community occupation serve their delightful menus at a wonderful event in the last few weeks of Term One. This year we had to improvise! The different cuisine groups have been rolling out some spectacular dishes over the last six weeks. In Week 2 the French team served the community a rip-roaring ratatouille and apple tarte tartin, Week 4 saw the Italian team deliver a copacetic carbonara and chocolate tiramisu and this week we had the pleasure of enjoying the Mexican crew’s beautiful burrito bowls followed by a zesty lime cheesecake. We can’t wait to see the food and decorative restaurant delights that the Indian and Chinese cuisine groups produce in the coming weeks.


It was a very fun experience and I learnt about particular cooking skills with Denise, for example how to make a tiramisu. It was one of my favourite days this year! (Sophie).


In the future I know that this learning is going to come in handy as a type of work experience. The way that that our customers reacted to our meals was awesome! I also enjoyed the way my group worked together (Teigue). 

Indonesian with Lyndal

Being the 'Year of Celebration', Cycle 3 headed bush-wards to appreciate acaci, the hint of Spring, and their hilarious, unlikely and serious Chatterbox sentences using vocabulary around 'play' and 'sport.' 

We celebrate our fluency, our word recall, and how good learning can come from fun in the bush.

Quiz Night Online

Our Virtual Quiz Night takes place Saturday 12 September!

What do you need to do?

1. Join a team or host your own and choose your own dress up theme

2. Purchase tickets, $20 each from the office

3. Keep an eye out for the Silent Auction items which will be available online to browse and bid on here:

4. Quiz Night packs will be available from the front office on the 10th and 11th September - one per team. 

 We would still love to hear from any school parents who are able to donate items to help make our first ever online Quiz Night a success.  This is our biggest fundraiser for the year so we would appreciate any donations.  Please let us know in the office if you are able to donate.

Parent Discussion Group - Reconnect with Libby (offsite)!

Date: 04/09/2020    Time: 09:30am-10:30am       Venue: Fred's Eatery

This term’s parent discussion morning with Libby, our Wellbeing Worker, will look a little different!  With school events currently on hold, we felt an off-site catch up would be ideal. 

Come along to Fred’s Eatery in Aldgate on Friday 4th September from 9.30 - 10.30am. We have booked the upstairs area for 15 people, so it’ll be nice and private to have coffee, chat and reconnect.

Numbers are capped at 15 so please RSVP via the eForm on Skoolbag if you’re keen. See you there!

New fundraising idea: Shared Know-How

Monti Chef #2

Diary Dates

Thursday 3 September

WHS meeting 4.00pm

Friday 4 September

Parent Discussion Group with Libby

Tuesday 8 September

I&PC meeting 8.00am - Zoom meeting

Finance meeting 6.00pm - Zoom meeting

Thursday 10 September

SPTG meeting 9.30am - Zoom meeting

Saturday 12 September

Quiz Night - online

Tuesday 15 September

Executive meeting 6.00pm - Zoom meeting

Board meeting 7.00pm - Zoom meeting

2021 School term dates

The 2021 School term dates are listed below. 

Please Note:  The 2021 school year will start on Wednesday 27th January as Monday 25th January will be a pupil free day and Tuesday 26th January is a public holiday.

Term 3 pupil free day will be held on Friday 13th August rather than the start of the term.

Term 1 - Wed 27th Jan - Fri 9th April

(Term 1 Pupil free day = Monday 25th Jan)

Term 2 - Tues 27th April - Fri 2nd July

(Term 2 Pupil free day = Monday 26th April)

Term 3 - Mon 26th July - Fri 24th September

(Term 3 Pupil Free Day = Friday 13th August)

Term 4 - Tues 12th October - Wed 8th December

(Term 4 Pupil free day = Monday 11th October)


“And such is our duty toward the child;

to give a ray of light and to go on our way.”

Maria Montessori


Term 1:  29 January – 9 April
Term 2: 28 April – 26 June
Term 3: 20 July – 25 September
Term 4: 13 October – 9 December