This Sunday begins the Advent season, with it a new liturgical year. In Mass, we start reading scripture stories from the Gospel of Matthew. Advent is a period of preparation extending over the four Sundays before Christmas. The word Advent comes from the Latin advenio, "to come to," and refers to the coming of Christ.
The Liturgical Year is refreshed, which invites us to refresh our commitment to open our hearts to God as well as to the goodness we are asked to embrace and share with others and our common home.
Each week we light a coloured candle to represent the four weeks of Advent; each candle is rich in symbolism. On Christmas Eve, we light the fifth candle; this candle is pure white to symbolise Jesus coming into the world – the light of God sent to show us the way.
Each week of Advent, I invite you to read through the reflections above and consider how you will action the themes of hope, peace, joy, love and ultimately, the light of Christ.
A good way to embrace the life-giving spirit of Advent is to follow an advent calendar that encourages outreach to the needy, good deeds and acts of kindness. Kindness and giving are incredibly powerful values because they result in positive and satisfying moments that all people need to thrive. A kind word or action can create a feeling of hope, peace, joy and love that lifts and empowers not just the receiver but the giver and onlooker.
I have included two calendars you can use and adapt for your family. Some of the ideas are very American "surprise your bus driver"; however, you could change this to surprise your teacher, a family member or a friend. These Kindness calendars are taken from the "The Ripple Kindness Project" it is an excellent site with many resources to foster an attitude of kindness and giving. If you would like to read more about the Ripple Kindness Project, visit https://ripplekindness.org/
This year we encourage you to contribute to our Giving Tree and donate a gift to someone in need. All gifts will be given to St. Vincent de Paul to deliver to local families in time for Christmas. See the attached information flyer below for all of the details. You will receive a card to label the category of your gift. We have assigned categories to each class so that we can cater to a variety of ages. Extra cards will be available via the front office if you would like to donate more than one gift.
Southern Cross - Southern Cross November 2022 Edition
With only three weeks of term left, we certainly have got into the sprint that comes at the end of a school year. We’ve had excursions, camps and performances the last few weeks, as well as High School transitions and many other things. These all combine to make the school a wonderful place to be.
Teachers have been busy working on Semester Two reports. This has involved collecting data on student growth and achievement, assessing student achievement against the Australian Curriculum, and preparing a comprehensive report on each child. Reports are important documents to share with families how students are progressing. We need to be mindful though about how we look at them. With my children I always look first at their effort and comments, before I look at their grades. I want to know that they are trying their best and putting as much effort into everything as they can. This is a great indicator of whether they are a life-long learner, and a better indication of whether they are working towards their potential.
Last week we conducted interviews for our vacant teaching positions. I thank the Chair of the School Board, Tammy Kregar, who joined myself, APRIM Rosemary Perre and Leader of Learning Mel Steele, on the interview panel for the positions. In the next couple of days I will be in a position to announce the successful candidates and what classes they will be teaching. We look forward to having a transition session with new classes possibly next week, in preparation for 2023.
I hope that all families are managing to cope with the rising waters around the Riverland area. This once-in-a-lifetime event is definitely something I haven’t experienced the magnitude of before. As we prepare for the peak flows in the next couple of weeks, and again around Christmas, we also know that the water won’t be receding very quickly either. We will keep you informed if anything changes around the start of next year about access to the school or flood impacts. We keep all those affected by the water in our thoughts.
Stay safe everyone.
Mood and Food
Feeling down or anxious? Eating a lot of ultra-processed foods such as packaged chips, biscuits and lollies could play a role, results of a recent study suggest.
The research using data collected from a nationally representative sample of more than 10,000 adults, looked for ties between the consumption of ultra-process foods – which contain little or no whole food – and mental health issues.
They found that that people who ate the highest amount of ultra-processed foods had statistically significant increases in symptoms of mild depression, “mentally unhealthy days” and “anxious days.”
The researchers note that more than 70% of packaged foods are classified as ultra-processed, and those products make up 60% of all calories consumed.
“The ultra-processing of food depletes its nutritional value and also increases the number of calories, as ultra-processed foods tend to be high in added sugar, saturated fat and salt, while low in protein, fibre, vitamins, minerals and phytochemicals”.
The study was published in the journal Public Health Nutrition.
When we look at what our children are eating, sometimes we need to ask ourselves if we are setting them up for the best day at school. A majority of students have multiple packets in their lunchboxes each day. What can we do to set them up for success, through their food intake? Is what we give them helping or hindering their concentration, mood and ability to think clearly?
Year 3 Excursion to Monarto Safari Park
The year 3 class enjoyed an excursion to Monarto Safari Park on Friday 18th of November. Conservation Educator John talked to students about animals' survival needs and how animals survive in different habitats. Students then worked in teams to build their own shelter making a bush cubby in the unique Monarto bushland. After lunch our Monarto guide Liz hopped on our bus, and we enjoyed a special Monarto Safari Park tour where we got very close to many animals including the giraffes and lions. Students and staff had a wonderful day and enjoyed games, and a pizza and chips dinner back at school before going home.
Water Safety Swimming Lessons
Week 9 we have booked to participate in water saftey lessons at the Hayden Stoeckel Swimming Pool. These lessons will run for 3 days Monday-Wednesday. A Medical and consent form will have gone home with your child/children this week and we ask that they are returned as soon as possible. Should you have any questions please call us on 8582 1128
Would you mind ensuring that your child's uniform and school items are clearly named to reduce the number of children looking for lost property? If your child does access spare clothes, please return these to the school.
A reminder that school uniform items are accessible through Tri-State Graphics, 216 Renmark Avenue, Renmark Ph: 8586 5815