Dear Parents and Families
As the term progresses, we have more clarity around timeframes for returning to school, which I know will be welcomed by families. On Monday you were sent the “Back to School Roadmap” information from the Department of Education and Tasmanian Government. If you did not receive these please see the attachments below:
Our students will be returning to school on Monday 9th June and we certainly look forward to having everyone back on campus.
I have also attached the link to the update video I sent home last week for those families who may have missed this update.
It gives a detailed account of Term 2 learning for us at KMHS. One of the key points I would like to reiterate again is how incredibly proud I am of the teaching and learning that staff and students have been engaging in. Staff have worked tirelessly and continue to do so to ensure that our students stay up to date with their curriculum and learning. Our Canvas courses and online delivery are working very well for the majority of our students. Our student survey last week also indicated that the vast majority of our students are continuing to engage well with all their subjects and have actually been enjoying the different mode of delivery. Here are some testimonials form the students from their survey.
I found that it is a bit more free, because if you are behind on a subject you can alter your timetable so you can get certain jobs done. I also find it good because if you are sick then you can stay home without missing out.
I am enjoying that it is very easy and if you are stuck with something it is very easy to email a teacher and they will reply pretty quickly.
More personalised learning; I feel more engaged; I can participate; I feel independent with my learning; I can learn anywhere anytime; I like learning through text, image, sound and online tutorials; I can navigate CANVAS to find my learning materials.
I feel like I am getting a lot more work done at home where there are no distractions. I also like that I don’t have to get up as early.
Everything’s going pretty well, it’s nice to be social (to a degree) with friends again in tutorials. It’s been a bit in your face though because all of a sudden, I’ve got a mountain load of work to do.
It's good that everything you need is in Canvas all ready for you.
A success in online learning is that if you can’t go to school you can do the work. I’m enjoying that I can still learn.
Something that I’m enjoying is how you can take your time with school work and not feel rushed because there are lots of other classes you have to get to.
I’m enjoying being able to learn at my own pace and finding it easier to learn.
I can participate; I feel independent with my learning; I can navigate CANVAS to find my learning materials.
Do what your doing. Everything’s amazing at the moment.
I also share in the latest video how important student wellbeing is and one of the reasons we undertake surveys is to gather voice from students around how they are going. All our students undertake a Wellbeing Check in Survey twice a week. This is compulsory for all students to undertake and gives class teachers valuable information about how everyone is travelling and who may need extra support. We have found this information invaluable as the weeks progress and we will continue to monitor and follow up with students, particularly those who indicate they are struggling in some way.
Our live face to face tutorials every day also ensure our students are keeping connected with the Class Teachers, one another and very importantly their learning. Regular lesson tutorials flow throughout the week and students and expected to connect to these when they fall in their Tutorial Timetable. We have been very pleased with the attendance of our students in tutorials and with engaging in their learning as monitored via the Canvas analytics we gather. Our overall school attendance of students participating in online learning programs both on campus and at home sits around 88%.
I thank all families for continuing to support the health and wellbeing of everyone in our community by staying at home and keeping your child at home if you can support them to do so. We have a well-structured learning program that they can continue to access, and our staff are readily available to support.
I also thank families for adhering to the government request of giving us 24 hours notice should your circumstances change.
As part of our Positive Behaviour Support Program at Kings Meadows we will be acknowledging students who have been contributing positively to our learning environment. This means that they have been supporting our school wide expectations.
Respect for others, self and environment
Commitment to learning
We would like to acknowledge the following students:
Zahra Moradi - for demonstrating her commitment to learning by being an independent learner and for making sure she completes her work on time.
Zeynab Nourouzi - for demonstrating her commitment to learning through thoughtful communication and request for feedback on her learning.
Lincoln MacDonald - for demonstrating being a safe learner by listening and sharing in a thoughtful manner when online.
Fatemeh Rezai - for her positive approach to all aspects of her schooling.
Zeshawn Ricketts - for working so diligently on his online learning.
Harrison Lamperd & Ashton Peachey - for fantastic application to their online learning.
Sophie Barker - for consistently displaying excellent behaviour in her tutorials and working really hard despite difficult conditions.
Arabella Johns - for displaying the ROCKS in all situations while studying online and working to the best of her ability.
Welcome back to our Grade 7 students and families. As we enter into a new term, students and staff have embraced our new way of working. As you are aware, student teaching and learning is being delivered online and we are excited about this new and innovative way of curriculum engagement and delivery to our students.
On Monday, Miss Males released a video link on the KMHS Facebook page in relation to Canvas. In this video, Miss Males guides us on how to navigate Canvas and use the functions within this application. If Canvas is new to you click on the link below to view:
We are really proud of our students and the way they have engaged online. They have learnt so many new skills, are building their independence and taking responsibility for their learning. Congratulations on such a great start Grade 7!
Over the last two weeks our grade focus has been around online etiquette. This means that when students are talking with peers and staff online in tutorials, in a chat or emailing they are following the below points:
Guidelines for a respectful chat, I can do that!
1. Remember that you are on camera and live. Your teacher and class members can see what you are wearing, where you are sitting and your facial expression. Find a quiet place in your house. Dress appropriately, following school dress codes. If possible, wear earphones with a microphone.
2. You are not anonymous. Be mindful of your expressions, speaking tones and what you say. Your voice and video are viewed by everyone participating in the conference. Other people in your house can hear what you and others in the video conference are saying.
3. Follow the same school ROCKS expectations for learning behaviour that you would follow in real life. Listen to the teacher. Take turns to speak. Be kind and considerate.
4. Think before you speak. Stay on topic. Make sure your comments are clear and appropriate to the conversation. Don't say anything you wouldn't say in your actual classroom.
5. Be a good listener. Take the time to listen to what people are saying. Don't interrupt others.
6. Think before you type. If your teacher enables the Chat to feature you may be able to participate by typing into a chat box. Choose your words carefully. Use appropriate spelling and grammar. Stay on topic. Don't use sarcasm or humour that could be misunderstood. Don't type in all caps.
7. Take it slow. Remote learning is probably a new experience for you. Resist the impulse to be silly or to say or type the first thing that comes into your mind.
8. Video conferencing is a privilege. If you cannot use it responsibly your access to school managed video conferencing tools will be removed.
On Monday, Miss Males and Mrs Hume held the weekly Grade assembly via teams. Items discussed were:
- Online etiquette
- Social distancing at school
- Review of our ROCKS expectations
- Checking in on student wellbeing
We are excited to share that we had 144 participants in our online assembly!
Here we have some of our students who are doing a fantastic job engaging with their work online and learning from home.
Amidst the unrest in our world at the moment, Grade 8 students continue to impress us with their growth mindsets, their optimism and their kindness towards one another. Students have engaged in online classes using Microsoft Teams and they have accessed Canvas to complete learning activities. They have collaborated and shared ideas with great enthusiasm and courage using these platforms.
Pastoral care remains a core focus for staff and students and it has been wonderful to see students engaging in Class Teacher each morning and taking part in a virtual Grade Assembly once a week. We are grateful for our access to technology, which has allowed us to connect, learn and grow throughout this time.
Our focus is around ‘Netiquette’ – continuing to respect our peers, our teachers and our learning online and making the experience as smooth as possible for everyone involved. Great job, Grade 8!
Grade 9 has had an excellent start to our alternative learning structure. Our Tuesday Grade Assemblies have been a highlight with over 130 participants coming together for important messages, games and laughter.
As students move into Week 3 of their online learning, they are encouraged to continue to do the follow:
- Actively engage in Class Teacher and subject tutorials
- Respond to correspondence from teachers through Canvas
- Regularly check school emails
- Adhere to due dates or contact teachers to arrange flexible submission times
- Take breaks. Get outside and get active. Check you HPE canvas page for workout ideas.
The Grade 9 teaching team sincerely appreciate the effort of students and families for staying engaged and safe during this time.
A big welcome to our Grade 10 student and families for the start of Term 2. Due to Covid-19 our learning looks very different with students learning online in their core subjects English, HaSS, Science, Maths and Health and Physical Education. Each day starts with students attending Class Teacher where they discuss what the plans are for the week in regard to student learning. Students throughout the week participate in a check-in survey that they complete on Mondays and Fridays to let class teachers know how they are finding their online learning and if they have any queries or concerns then class teachers will follow this up with extra support. Grade 10’s have an assembly every Thursday at 9.10am which has had approximately 140 students checking in online. This is a fantastic number of students in attendance.
The second lot of rugby tops with names printed on the back have arrived and Mrs Williams is looking after these until students return. We are offering a third run of rugby tops so if you would still like to have one with your name and year printed on the back please get a parent or guardian to bring your rugby jumper into the ladies in the office with $16.50 to have them printed in the coming weeks. The cut off date for this will be Friday May 29th.
Well done to students with the online learning, make sure you are submitting assessments to your teachers. If you are having difficulties with any aspects of your learning please speak to your class teachers or inbox your subject teachers. Keep up the good work Grade 10 and we look forward to seeing you on your return to school.
It is my pleasure to introduce the return of the Kings Meadows Literacy Legend for 2020. Each fortnight we will celebrate the magnificent work that our students produce in their English classes by featuring a piece of work from one/or two, of our students and an interview with them. This week we have two narratives. Stella Jones and Katelyn Chilcott, both from Grade 7, have written very successful and entertaining stories for you all to enjoy.
Well done girls and we hope you love ‘Heart of Gold and ‘The Perfect Note’!
English Learning Area Leader
Student name: Stella Jones
Student class: 7E
What can you tell us about this piece of work?
I was feeling sad and I reminded myself that my family will always be there for me and I would do anything for them so that’s what prompted me to write about Zero and the journey to save her life.
What is your favourite thing about English?
Being able to make the things you think of real and being able to express your emotions.
What are you working on at the moment?
I’m working on a poem called, ‘The Waters Ways’.
What are you reading at the moment?
At the moment I am reading the ‘Throne of Glass’ series by Sarah J. Maas
What is your favourite book and why?
‘The Eyes of Tamburah’ by Maria V. Snyder because it’s interesting and you never know what’s going to happen next.
What are some books that you would really like to read?
Percy Jackson the Lightning Thief - Rick Riordan
An Ember in the Ashes - Sabaa Tahir
The Starless Sea - Erin Morgenstern
HEART OF GOLD
The blistering sun glared down turning the sand into a burning pit. The thick leather boots I was wearing did nothing to stop the heat that seeped from every grain of sand. The blistering heat from those was enough to make me faint but I had to keep going, I had to. Just when I thought I could go no longer I saw it. A pinprick on the horizon of the tower reaching up towards the sky that was now going dark with dusk. It was what I was here for, it was what everyone that came to the desert was here for, but up until now no one had ever found it, well at least those who had lived to tell the tale. I stumbled forward tripping over a large rock. As I inspected my stubbed toe and cut hand I glimpsed a sight of what I tripped over. It wasn’t a rock as I had first thought it was a skull, a horrible grinning skull. The sight of it made me want to deposit the meagre contents of my stomach all over that sand. It made me want to turn and run. Looking around I saw hundreds of other skulls lining the sand, each had been picked clean by the critters that roamed the sands.
I slowly picked myself back up trying not to expel the little I had eaten as I started toward the tower that loomed menacingly in the distance. Zero was calling out to me, her cry’s pushed me forward as I fought my family’s pleas to stay. I’m doing this for you Zero, I’ll always love you. Startled I looked around trying to find what stopped me from walking. Then I looked up. It was the tower and it was day. I had been so preoccupied with my thoughts that I hadn’t noticed the fading night give way to the burden of the suns heat. I circled the black stone searching for a door. After doing a lap I slumped to the ground my tears making tracks on my grime smeared cheeks . There was no door or window not even an opening. I pressed my bleeding palm against the stone and pushed myself to a standing position. As soon as I was on my feet the tower rumbled behind me as the stone warped and twisted to create a door.
I stood gaping at the open space before hurtling up the winding stairs that were inside the tower. Every time I went up a step the feeling of suspense grew. What was at the top of the tower? As I neared the top the feeling of someone watching me grew as my heart pounded.
The top of the tower was a bleak open space and there was nothing there, not even a grain of sand. This is when I got really suspicious, why is there nothing here? In the legend it spoke of a tower of black with a heart of gold. Then I realised the heart of gold wasn’t above the surface it was below. I hurled down the stairs 3 at a time. By the time I reached the bottom my feet were sore and aching. Carefully I inspected the wall sure enough there was a notch. I slid the battered key I had carried on my journey out from underneath my shirt. It fit snuggly in the hole. I held my breath and turned it 1… 2… 3…
A door swung open revealing steps that lead down into the gloomy dark. I carefully went down, the lights on the walls barely illuminating the step in front of me. Finally I reached an open cavern. I thought of what to do then, then I remembered in the legend it said:
Carved on the wall is the words to speak and a heart of gold is the one they seek
This place will show you the person within
But only you can dare to begin
Say what you need
And we will proceed do not step back
Or you will bleed
I slowly walked forward toward the far wall. My steps echoing on the walls before being absorbed by the strange green light that clung to the lichen strewn walls. I could now read the inscription on the wall. It said:
Far I have travelled for this so please
Help me for this is my wish
My greatest desire Is this
Carefully I recited the poem and added on the end
My sister is dying and I want to save her
Saving Zero is my greatest desire so help me please I wish it please
The green light that clung to the walls broke off and surrounded me. An eerie voice echoed around the cavern repeating my wish. The light got brighter and brighter as it swirled around me. I closed my eyes and felt my feet lift of the ground then there was silence. I cautiously opened my eyes and to my surprise I was standing outside my house. I walked Inside and smiled at the sight of Zero waddling around the living room. I walked over and squatted next to her, her little fists grabbed at my long hair as I handed her the doll I had made before leaving. Mum walked in and rejoiced. I was home, Zero was healthy and our life was better than ever.
I walked out to the deck and smiled at the crisp dawn air and the mumbled groans from the awakening city. The tower was burned into my mind and the promise that came with it. Be happy. The morning fog rose to cover the city like a mysterious blanket of smoke. Anything is possible and I’ve realised that, anything is possible If you try. I slid back Into the sleepy household to make breakfast before the afternoon started. The story was yet to begin, yet the story had already ended.
By Stella Jones
Student name: Katelyn Chilcott
Student class: 7C
What can you tell us about this piece of work?
I really enjoyed writing this story. In many parts, it includes things that have happened in my own life, such as when Melody is saying that, ‘everyone thinks she looks like her dad,’ that happens to me all the time.
What is your favourite thing about English?
I really enjoy English because I like to make up my own stories. I like to think up ideas of my own little worlds, and I enjoy writing because I can make those ideas come to life.
What are you working on at the moment?
In English, my grade 7 class is working on persuasive arguments by discussing topics and our viewpoints on them.
What are you reading at the moment?
I recently finished reading the Divergent series by Veronica Roth.
What is your favourite book and why?
As I mentioned before I recently finished reading the Divergent series and the first book out of the series is my favourite book I have read so far.
What are some books that you would really like to read?
I read the first book of the series and it finished on a great cliffhanger that made me want to read the next one.
THE PERFECT NOTE
“Once upon a time, not so far from where we are, there was a place called Everlin, a magical city of music. It was said that long ago, the people lived in harmony with every living thing. They thrived off the beautiful sound of singing and music. But for some unknown reason they stopped singing and the land shrivelled up, died and became how it is today.”
“Come on!? You don’t seriously believe all this! That’s just some stupid fairytale!” says Max, half yelling, half whispering. Max doesn’t usually just believe anything and everything. Though he looks like a naïve little boy he is actually quite smart and thinks things through.
“You may not believe it Max, but I sure do. Look around you! You can tell this place is supposed to look beautiful but it isn’t. There is so much nature. It just needs to look, you know, not dead…” Nora replied hastily. She is quite opposite to Max, not only by looks, but also by character. She is a dark skinned girl, naturally beautiful. While Max is quite pale, having red hair with streaks of blonde.
“What do plants have to do with magical singing?”
“Well, you see that patch over there?” Nora signals to a small forest area that used to house lumberjacks. “Surely you can tell that this whole place used to be like that. It would still be like that, if people lived here and started to nurture this place and be happy. The land relied on the peacefulness of its inhabitants.”
“What do you think Melody?” asks Max.
Great he’s signalling to me, I’m Melody. If I agree with Nora, then Max will be angry with me. But if I disagree with her, then she’ll say that I have no imagination.
“Don’t pull me into this, it’s your argument!”
But really, what I’m thinking is muddled. I don’t know. Does it sound so ridiculous, I mean, what she says has a valid point. You can tell this place used to look beautiful when it was an inhabited village. Thankfully before Max or Nora can reply my mother calls us into dinner.
To me I look most like my mother, but to others I look most like my dad. I have a nice rounded head with short blond hair. That’s like my mother, but to everyone else all they can see is my dad’s side. My short stubby nose that matches perfectly my big blue eyes and my boyish sense of style. But really I don’t care what people think.
Nora, Max and my family have all been staying at my grandparents. We have stayed here for about two weeks already, and are really enjoying it. We have found a good place to hang out during the days that we are not either studying for school or helping out on the farm. One paddock stretches out to the horizon and smack bang in the middle of it is a huge evergreen tree. Other than that tree, all the others look like they have been burnt.
After tea has finished, we pack up the table and ask to head out to the evergreen tree. Fittingly, we call it ‘Everlin’.
“Mum, since we have been helping out a lot more lately and haven’t had much time to hang out, can we….”
“Yes of course you can go out to your little tree, I’m fine with that” my mother says before I can really finish my sentence.
Before I can run off to follow Max and Nora, my mother grabs me by my arm and says, “Just make sure you come home before dark out. Have fun, and maybe, if you can, do some school work?”
I nod, grab my stuff and run off.
While the other two are arguing and goofing about, I sit down under Everlin and start on my endless amount of tests and assignments. People say time flies by when you’re having fun, but for me, whether I’m having fun or doing boring tests, the time goes by like a rushing river. So when I look up to have a breather, it’s already getting late.
“We were going to come over to tell you to be quiet!” says Max almost, scolding me.
“Why?” I reply looking confused.
“You were humming the whole time!”
Now I can tell he’s really annoyed. Max hates it when people mindlessly sing or hum. “Sorry,”I say, trying to calm him down. “I didn’t realise that I was humming.” “You don’t have to apologise Melody, he was over reacting,” adds Nora.
As we start to walk back to the farm, I notice that I had completely forgotten to get my school books. “Hey guys, keep walking, but I’m just going back to get my books, ok?” I say.
I jog back to Everlin to get my books, but when I go to turn around, something stops me and a shiver goes down my spine. Out of the corner of my eye I could see a blob of green and yellow. In another setting this wouldn’t be as ‘scary’ or ‘shocking’ as it is now. When I turn back and look at it closer, it turns out to be a little daffodil. But what makes me shiver is that it wasn’t there when I left. This whole paddock is just a big patch of dead.
But then it hits me, Nora was right. This has to be Everlin, and I’m not talking about the tree. That thought keeps me up all night. We have a mystical garden, only meters from the house. While when you think of things that keep you up at night as scary, scared wasn’t what I felt. It’s more like the feeling you get when someone tells you that they have a surprise for you. And in those minutes that you have to wait for the surprise, you build up this emotion, which is almost like a yearning for it.
That is exactly the feeling I have now, that yearning to explore and find out more. Can you really blame me for what I’m doing. As I tiptoe down the hallway, I pray that the groans the floorboards make don’t wake the others up.
“What are you doing Melody?”
Damn it, quick think up a lie, people don’t need to think you’re crazy.
“I… ah, was just, um, going to go get some milk for me to, um, drink ya know… he, he.” I doubt that it’s a convincing lie. “But I could ask you the same thing?”
“You and your elephant feet woke me up. You are a terrible liar, you know that right?” Max is standing there still half asleep, wiping the sleep from his bright green eyes. “So what are you really doing?”
I can’t lie to him now.
“You aren’t going to believe me. So, you know how you and Nora were arguing about whether Everlin is real or not.” I don’t wait for a reply. “Anyway, when I went back to get my books, I saw a daffodil! There is no way that it was there when we first went out, and an even lesser chance that anything would actually grow out there. And then it clicked. All that time I was humming. Isn’t that exactly like what happens in Everlin!”
“I believe you.”I turn around to see Nora standing there, with a backpack, torch and camera. “Hurry up, let’s go then!” Max says with a smirk on his face. I knew I could count on them.
We all rush out the door, our little bodies overflowing with adrenaline. I guess we were expecting to see something other worldly and magical. And boy were we… right! Words do not describe how beautiful it actually was. It was like the kind of thing you would read about in books. Beautiful cherry blossoms framed a wide cobblestone pathway, giving it an other worldly pink glow. And instead of the stale, cold air that we would normally breathe, tonight the air was cool, giving off the slight smell of roses.
As we continued down the pathway, it just got better. Not only were there many trees, they were all different. Some pink, others various shades of green. The only trees that we had seen this whole trip were dead sticks, laying on the dry soil. Now there were trees, flowers, bushes, even animals. If you peered close enough into the trees, you could see the faint silhouette of deers. Even though we bought torches with us there was no need to use them. We were all speechless, not being able to take in what had happened after we left.
“We should go tell your grandparents, Melody! They would love to see this!” Said Nora, finally breaking the silence.
“Maybe you’re right, lets go get them.”
We ran back to the house, bursting with excitement to share the wonderful thing we had found. By now it was about sunrise, the time had just slipped by. My mum and dad were already up making a surprise breakfast.
“Mum! Dad! Quick come outside and look at this!” I yell, grabbing my mother’s arm and yanking her out the house.
“Sweetie, I don’t see anything.” That response to me at first is shocking. How can you not see it?! Are you blind!? But then it becomes clear. Just as quickly as it appeared, the magical world that we just came out of disappeared. “What was I going to see?”
But then I realise, this could be our secret, our own little world. A paradise that we could play in. Keep it to ourselves. Plus why would she believe us anyway, it sounds crazy, but it’s true.
“Oh, I just thought I saw a deer run by, my mistake.” Everlin, my own little world, how nice.
By Katelyn Chilcott
Online Safety for Students:
CyberPass is an online tool that provides children and young people with strategies to manage their online life in a safe and responsible manner. It is endorsed by the Australian eSafety Commissioner’s Office and is widely used across Australia and internationally. CyberPass is available free of charge to schools, parents and the general community. No login is required. Please share this with your school community. CyberPass can be accessed at https://free.thecyberpass.com/.