Woodend Primary School Newsletter

23 May 2019
Issue 14
2019 Calendar
From the Principal, Diana Ellis
From the Office
Senior Unit
Carlsruhe Annexe
Middle Unit 
Foundation Unit
Education Support Team
Student Awards & Achievements
Gardening Group
PFA News
Student Banking
Uniform Shop
Library News
Community News
Michael Grose: Parent Insights
School Information
Woodend Primary School
(03) 5427 2455
Owen Street,
Woodend, Victoria, 3442

2019 Calendar



Thurs 23rd - Melanie

Fri 24th - Robyn, Lenny

Wed 29th - Robyne

Thurs 30th - No help required

Fri 31st - Linda, Lauren

Please contact me on mobile 0411 558 557 if you can help .  Remember it's only Wednesday, Thursday or Friday,  9-12.30pm, you receive a free lunch and your child(ren) receive a free icy pole.

May 2019

Fri 24/05

Yr 5/6 visit to Gisborne Secondary College

Cobaw Soccer (rescheduled from 10/5/19)


Working Bee at WPS

Wed 29/05

PFA Meeting 7.30pm

Fri 31/05


June 2019

Mon 03/06

Tues 04/06

Regional Cross Country at St. Arnaud (selected students)

Monday 10/06

Public Holiday - No School

Fri 14/06

Cobaw Winter Sports

Mon 17/06

School Council 7pm

Fri 21/06

Foundation Unit - Museum excursion

Yr 3 excursion to Melbourne Aquarium

Wed 26/06

Sushi Day

PFA meeting at 7.30pm

Thurs 27/06

Curriculum Day - NO SCHOOL

Fri 28/06

Last day of Term 2.   2.30pm finish

2019 School Dates

Term 2  -  23.04.2019 - 28.06.2019

Term 3  -  15.07.2019 - 20.09.2019

Term 4  -  07.10.2019 - 20.12.2019

2019 Pupil Free Days

  • Thursday 27th June
  • Monday 4th November

2019 Camp Dates

Year 2 - 16-17 October

Year 3 - 18-20 September

Year 4 - 4-6  December 

Year 5 - 27-29 November

Dental Screening Services to Children

Sunbury Community Health is offering a FREE dental service to junior students (Foundation to Year 2) at Woodend Primary School on Wednesdays 28th August, 4th, 11th and 18th September, 2019.

There are no out-of-pocket costs for any child. Application forms will be distributed prior.

From the Principal, Diana Ellis


I would like to begin this newsletter with a HUGE thank you to all of the people that made our cake stall and our democracy BBQ so successful; everyone from the people that baked the goods, cooked the snags, those who set up and packed up the stalls and those who sold our goods.

As a result of this success the funds raised were $2461.00 - BBQ $950.00 and Cake stall $1511.00

The money raised this year will go towards replacing our shade sail and a number of colourful playground markings that are planned after the asphalt is resurfaced during the June holidays.    


Pirate Day - Friday May 31

Woodend Primary School will once again be supporting cancer research for kids with brain cancer, by participating in Pirate Day on Friday the 31st of May, for a gold coin donation. 

So dress up like a pirate, bring your treasure (gold coin) and enjoy the activities planned for the day.

The past and the future

As I write this newsletter, I, like many people in our school community are unsure of who will be appointed Principal of WPS for the future. At this stage the process should be completed in time for the appointed Principal to start next term.


As communicated in previous newsletters, this coming Monday (May 27th) is my last day before I close this chapter of my life (or become terminated, as described in my department paperwork). Seeing those words when I signed all of my paper work this week made it all seem very real, very eminent and somewhat final. It is hard to know how to deliver this newsletter when I have every intention of continuing to lead this school. That is of course dependent on the outcome of the appointment process that provides complete merit and equity for all applicants.


Many people have asked if I am having a farewell. At this stage we will wait to see the outcome of the process, so I am hoping Monday will be fairly low key and business as usual. Although in all honestly it is an emotional time and also a sense of unknown for our school community.


Since starting my career in 1985 I have always passionately invested as much as I could in education, with the best interests of my students and school community always at the core of everything I did.

After college at Bendigo, I applied to teach Physical Education in the Melbourne Metropolitan area and was appointed to Wedderburn in the Mallee to teach Library and Art for the whole school, then year 2 and 3. My three years in the Mallee was the beginning of many life long friendships, adventures, and challenges, including being in the middle of a huge mice plague. Each morning we would pick up the bean bags in the class and mice would go running in every direction. From 1988 -1990 I was at Craigieburn P-12 school (polar opposite to the Mallee).  I taught Preps for three years, followed by five years of family leave where I enjoyed spending every possible minute with my two little boys in between CRT work and some contract stints.  From 1995 to 2010, I was at Romsey Primary School, ten years teaching Preps and then four years of Year 5/6. From 2010 until mid 2016 was the beginning of my Principal journey at Lancefield Primary and then my appointment to W.P.S in October 2016.


Like all jobs, there have been challenges but I can wholeheartedly say I have loved the last 30 years of my journey and my passion and future will always be as an educator. I am extremely proud of what we have collectively achieved at WPS over the last two years and could not be more grateful for the joy I have had in working with staff, parents and students that are striving to continually improve our school. I sincerely thank you for your support over the last two years and all of your wishes over the last two weeks. My hope is to continue to lead our wonderful school.


One of the things I will miss is the chance to admire our beautiful Woodend area on my drive to school at this glorious time of the year.


Continuing forward

Now that our Capital works project has finished our next steps will be to; erect our school sign at the front of the school, get a new shade sail and get painted lines and games on the asphalt court.



Last week I had the pleasure of our Carlsruhe students inviting me to be part of their term presentations to their parents. Along with the parents and teachers, I was very proud of the level of the work presented and the attention to detail in the projects.


I have also had the pleasure of being invited to look at more of our budding artists working on their castles with complete attention to detail.


Play Leaders

This week our Play Leaders have demonstrated their initiative and skills by providing some lunch time games for our Foundation students. Up to 30 students at a time have attended the session run by Sharnee and Laura, our play leaders from the Senior Unit.



Our Year 6 and Prep buddies have regular catch ups. Last weeks I had the opportunity to catch them enjoying reading.



This week I am pleased to say that Jenni is very grateful for the help that has been offered in the next month. Whilst this is a more positive response, Jen will always welcome more helpers. It has been wonderful to see a number of new helpers joining the team.

Collaborative staff work

Each week our staff meet a number of times. On Mondays we have our SIT (School Improvement Team). This team is made up of myself, Mrs Graham and all of our Learning Leaders: Mr Condon (Numeracy), Mrs Thompson (Literacy), Mr Chamerski (Data), Mrs Safstrom (Reading Recovery) and Mrs Spiers (Science).

All of these people lead our improvement teams in the school for all of the above mentioned areas. They set very specific goals and timelines about what work is required and how to achieve improvement for our school.

We also have a separate team that focuses solely on Wellbeing and our Berry Street and School Wide Behaviour Initiatives.

At Staff Meeting each week the work is on building staff capacity and collaborative team work. Last week Jordan Chamerski led a session for all staff where the focus was on improving our school data in Speaking and Listening and Science and focusing on the changes that we need to implement for this to occur.

This week at Staff Meeting, Mark Condon presented our new whole school Maths Model and MRS. Thompson took the staff through a session on moderating (assessing) student writing samples so that we can have improved consistency of judgements across the school.

Every Tuesday all of our staff meet in their teaching teams so that they can analyse student data and plan their teaching sequences and assessments accordingly.


Foundation Information session

On Tuesday evening our Foundation Staff and Student Leaders presented an information session to parents that have children starting school in 2020. The session comprehensively explained all aspects of our school programs and also covered information about school readiness and how to prepare children for school and support them in their transition.

Community Lunch

This week students form our Senior Unit will again support the community lunch at the R.S.L by serving meals and helping to clean up. This is also a great opportunity for our students to engage with a range of people from our community whilst also proudly representing our school.

Leave your mark

A big thank you to Mr Spilsted and his trusty helpers Patrick and Jayden for putting up this beautiful 'leave your mark’ piece of work that was done by our departing Year 6 students prior to 2016. It has been placed in the library foyer to be enjoyed by all, instead of hiding in my office.

From the Office

School Photos have been distributed via students

School photos ordered through Schoolpix recently, have been sent home with your child this week.


If you have any queries regarding photo orders, quality or content, please call Schoolpix direct on 1300 766 055.

Ordering 'Whole of Year 4' and 'Whole School' photos

Parents are able to order their own copy of either the 'Whole Year 4 Photo' or the 'Whole School Photo'. Both are on display at the school office window.

  • TO ORDER: go to www.schoolpix.com.au and click ‘Order Online’…login and enter:
  • Order No: M19511
  • Internet ID No: SW72WW8E

First group photo is $26

Additional different group photo is $13

Order before 9th June for FREE delivery back to school. Orders after this date will incur a $7.95 fee for posting to your home.

School Accounts

School accounts have been issued via students. Please read the statement from the School Council Treasurer, which is attached to your account. This explains the expectation and reasoning surrounding the charges listed for the Building and Library Fund, which are voluntary contributions.

  • If your school account has a NIL balance, NO ACCOUNT HAS BEEN ISSUED.

Official receipts for donations received for the Building & Library Fund have also been issued, for amounts received within the last 2 months. If you have made a tax deductible donation and not received a receipt, please contact the school office.


Any queries or issues surrounding the account should be directed to the school office. If there is a charge listed that you don’t think you owe, please call us to sort it out. Ph: 5427 2455

Payment Methods for School Activities


Senior Unit

Prep Information Evening

The student leadership team welcomed the new and prospective parents to the Prep Information Evening last Tuesday. The students leaders discussed what they loved about starting at Woodend Primary and what the parents could expect for their child.

Community Lunch

Six Year 6's volunteered for the Community Lunch on May 23. It was a special lunch as it was the 4th Birthday celebration. We can’t wait to come back.


Literacy Challenge - Week 4

How many words can you find using only the letters in the square? Write down as many words as you can and hand it to your teacher by Wednesday 29th May. Winners will be announced at assembly on Friday 31st May. Good Luck!!!


Carlsruhe Annexe

Needed for Carlsruhe!

Do you have any old wooden broom or tool handles lying around!

Our new project at Carlsruhe is to make gumboot holders for the bag area - enough for 55 sets of gumboots.

We need lots of old wooden broom or garden tool handles to make the post for the gumboots to slide on. 

Any donations would be greatly appreciated. Please hand them in to the Office or hand them to the Carlsruhe teachers at the 'Bus stop' in a morning.  Thanks in anticipation.

Welcome to CU3

This week the students of CU1 have welcomed CU3 to Carlsruhe, sharing their expertise and modelling fantastic teamwork skills. The students of CU3 have settled in wonderfully, with enthusiasm and kindness to the animals! Here are some photos of us all working together during the Carlsruhe Jobs Program.


Thursday Activities

Thursday Activities will start next Thursday afternoon (30th May) at 1:45pm.

We need at least 3 extra adults to help us run these activities effectively.

Please let your child’s teacher know if you are available to help with these activities. 


Ann Ireland, Nathan Spilsted  and Mark Condon

Literacy Challenge - Week 4

How many words can you find using only the letters in the square? Write down as many words as you can and hand it to your teacher by Wednesday 29th May. Winners will be announced at assembly on Friday 31st May. Good Luck!!!


Middle Unit 

Years 1 and 2

This term the Year 1 and 2 students have been examining the features of a procedural text. They have made playdough, brought in recipes and instructions from home and looked at how procedural texts are presented. This week, MU3 looked at a video showing how to shower a dog. They used the video to help write a procedure. After editing and checking that their writing matched the criteria for a procedural text, students in MU3 asked the Year 5/6 students from SU3 to help type up their writing. It was wonderful to see the Year 5/6 students share their knowledge about typing, creating borders, adding pictures and using fun fonts. The MU3 students then decorated their types work and are very proud of how they turned out. Thanks SU3!


Science Newsletter Challenge Awards

We had some extremely creative entries to our science newsletter challenge, ‘What can you build from a cardboard box?’ We particularly enjoyed the entries that had moving parts, or were designed to be functional or solve a problem. Here are some photos for you to enjoy!


Literacy Challenge - Week 4

How many words can you find using only the letters in the square? Write down as many words as you can and hand it to your teacher by Wednesday 29th May. Winners will be announced at assembly on Friday 31st May. Good Luck!!!


Year 3

Life in Year 3 is very exciting at the moment. Students are highly engaged in researching and finding out information about animals. Many students have been bringing in animal books to share with the class and have loved finding out about different animals as part of our Integrated Studies unit. MU6 has looked at reptiles and fish in greater detail, MU7 amphibians and reptiles and MU8 mammals and amphibians.


As part of our book studies in Reading we have been making text to text connections. We have discussed how a “text” can be a book, movie, TV show, magazine, newspaper and something we see on the internet. Our books currently have a focus on animals including Artic and Antarctic Animals and Elephants.


In Writing, we have started working on information reports as well as stages of publishing a narrative piece. Students are gaining confidence using the netbook computers. 


We have been learning to tell time to the nearest 5 minutes in Maths. Many students are still finding this quite tricky so we are encouraging incidental “time telling” of analogue clocks at home. We have also been investigating 3D shapes and have made shapes from nets.

Literacy Challenge - Week 4

How many words can you find using only the letters in the square? Write down as many words as you can and hand it to your teacher by Wednesday 29th May. Winners will be announced at assembly on Friday 31st May. Good Luck!!!


Foundation Unit


This Term in the Junior Unit we are learning about animals and their survival needs in our topic, ‘Take A Walk On The Wild Side’. We have been discussing different habitats and the basic needs of the animals that live in these habitats. Our Science Unit, Staying Alive, is closely linked to this topic and explores the needs of pets and how senses help us and animals, to survive. As part of this unit we investigated the food, water and shelter needs of the pets we have in our homes. We presented our findings to the class during Show and Tell.


Literacy Challenge - Week 4

How many words can you find using only the letters in the square? Write down as many words as you can and hand it to your teacher by Wednesday 29th May. Winners will be announced at assembly on Friday 31st May. Good Luck!!!


Education Support Team


In Education Support we have been focusing on phonological awareness as part of our enrichment program. The strategies that are used in this program have been developed together with the DET Speech Therapist, Assistant Principal and Classroom Teachers to support and increase students’ knowledge of speech sounds and articulation, letter and sound recognition, decoding the written word and developing their expressive language.

During sessions, students are given the opportunity to increase their knowledge of alphabet sounds and how to blend them to make words using a systematic approach. Students are supported individually and in small groups to utilise their prior knowledge, while developing new skills and strategies.




Student Awards & Achievements

Students of the Week

JU1 - Nil

JU2 -Knox

For his amazing writing about a boy and a magic carpet.

MU1 - Abbey

For being responsible in our library session and borrowing books quietly.

MU2 - June

For being a great leader in her class and leading others to follow her good choices. Well done!

MU3 - Ava

For always being willing to have a go and for striving to be your best. Fantastic effort Ava!

MU4 - Odin

For his beautiful and expressive reading of ‘The Children of Lir’.

MU5 - Hannah

For showing our Woodend values consistently. You are safe, responsible, respectful and you are an excellent learner!

MU6 - Rose

For her outstanding Science work this week and surprising us with a cockroach, millipede, centipede and baby slater!

MU7 - Ella

For always being a responsible learner.  Ella approaches challenging tasks with persistence and enthusiasm.

MU7 - Tom

For his excellent effort towards writing this week. Great focus and creative thinking Tom.

MU8 - Ellie

For demonstrating our school value ‘Be a Learner” by putting in 100% effort on all tasks this week. Well Done.

CU1 - Lucas

For showing great persistence and a ‘can do’ attitude to all of his learning. You Rock!

CU2 - Elena

For using powerful verbs, adjectives, and adverbs in her writing and grammar tasks.

CU3 - Atticus

For the enthusiastic and mature way he spoke to parents during our sharing session.

SU1 - Aidan

For his gut-running and determination this week at basketball training!! You rock!!!

SU2 - Amelie

For her enthusiasm and approach to her work, and her passion for her new role as Quinnsland’s Opposition Leader. Great job Amelie!

SU3 - Finn

For the effort he put into his job application. You’re hired!

Classes of the Week


For enthusiastic participation in French.


For all working very hard on their seahorses and crocodiles!

Artists of the Week

Year 4 students learnt about the Dutch artist Piet Mondrian and his simple grid painting.  The students used Mondrian's art as inspiration for their own work.  Great work Year 4.


Our Star Artists are:

Rhys, Ella, Ethan, Amelia, Evie, Kurtis, Dylan, Leila, Oscar, Peter, Hannah and Callan.

Gardening Group

Making our garden class room

Did you know…

“Interacting with school gardens inspires a sense of community and pride of place, promotes healthy eating, provides outdoor physical activity, enables a connection with nature, offers opportunities for children to problem solve, plan and project manage, and has been scientifically proven to enhance academic performance.” from Bucklin-Sporer & Pringle (2010). ‘How to Grow a School Garden.’


See you at the Whole School Working Bee 9am this Saturday. 


Nicole Middleton

Gardening Group Facilitator - 0418 233 366



  • Welcome to the canteen, Melanie and Kylie.
  • Sushi Day will be June 26th.   Order forms to follow.
  • Please contact me if you can help out in June. Wednesdays, Thursdays or Friday.  Only 9-12.30pm with a free lunch for you and a free icy pole for your child(ren). No money to count, just orders to fill. Call me on 0411 558 557.   


Please update details on Qkr and lunch bags.

  • Please ensure your child(ren) have the correct details on Qkr. 
  • When ordering from Qkr, please purchase a lunch bag first, if you're not supplying your own. 
  • NO CASH ORDERS WILL BE ACCEPTED.  Please see the office staff for help loading Qkr.

PFA News

Carlsruhe Country Fair - Saturday 30th November

Please note that the confirmed date for the Carlsruhe Country Fair is Saturday 30 November 2019. The date change has occurred so that we don't clash with other community events around the same time.

Thank you to those who have volunteered to assist with the committee for the Fair.  Everyone is welcome to share the load, even if you would like to contribute but you’re not sure how. The more people that are helping, the easier it is for everybody! Please email wpspfa@gmail.com to register your interest.

Parents And Friends - Fundraising Activities for 2019

Term 3

Trivia Night - 27th July

Father's Day Breakfast - Fri 6th September

Term 4

Carlsruhe Country Fair - Saturday 30th November

Christmas Raffle

Danni Findlay


Student Banking

8 Deposits - Choose your reward

Zoey, Polly & Isabelle

9 Deposits - Your reward has been ordered

K'ian, Catherine

10 Deposits - Your reward has been sent home

Archer, Mariella, Isabelle, Cruz

Term 2 Rewards - NEW

  • New for Term 2 - Icicle Slapband Ruler and Yeti Fluffy Notepad


School Banking

TOKENS - WPS  utilises the Commonwealth Bank School Banking Portal to track tokens, so no longer issue physical tokens. I will notify students when they are eligible to redeem a reward. 


  • Wednesday: Hand in books via classroom
  • Thursday: Books processed and returned to the classroom

Getting involved in School Banking is easy!

1. Online

Visit commbank.com.au/schoolbanking and click on the link to open a Youthsaver account.

2. In branch

Visit a Commonwealth Bank branch with identification for yourself and your child, like a driver’s licence and birth certificate.


If your child has an existing Commonwealth Bank Youthsaver account they can start banking straight away. They just need to bring their deposit in every week on School Banking day using their Dollarmites deposit wallet.

Uniform Shop

Lost Property

Lost property is located outside the uniform shop door.  Named items will be returned to the classroom.  Unnamed items will be placed here until end of term, then they are donated to charity.  Please stop by from time to check and see whether any items belong to you.


Name Stamp for clothing

I have a Name Stamp that can be used on uniforms that does not wash off.

This is the website on where to find it.        


Uniform Shop Hours

Normal Uniform Shop opening times are:

Tuesday: 8.45am - 9.15am

Thursday: 3pm - 4pm

Michelle Wearne

Uniform Shop

Library News


The library session times for each class is also listed so parents may help with the returning of books on allocated days.  We also have a tub outside the library door so books can be returned at any time.  Everyone’s help with this would be greatly appreciated.


Susan Machell


Community News



Macedon Ranges Shire Council


Michael Grose: Parent Insights

6 tips for parenting anxious kids

If you’re the parent of an anxious child you’re most certainly not alone. The number of children experiencing an anxiety disorder is currently estimated at 117 million worldwide. Here in Australia, there’s an average of 2 anxious kids in every classroom; and they’re the ones with a diagnosis. Many more anxious kids are yet to have their anxiety identified and understood.

As much as we’d like to, we can’t rid our kids of their anxiety, but we can help them to manage it in ways that enable them move it from centre stage and get on with living a vibrant, rich and meaningful life.

Here are 6 tips to support you to parent your anxious child:

1. Explain anxiety
Anxious kids can struggle to explain how they feel and can worry that no-one will understand what they’re going through. That’s why explaining anxiety is an important step in supporting an anxious child. The knowledge that anxiety is well understood, that other kids experience it and that it’s manageable brings them immediate relief.

Teach your anxious child that the part of their brain that protects them from danger is always on high alert. Called the amygdala, it’s meant to protect them from genuine danger but for anxious kids, it can be almost constantly activated.

Explain that when they feel anxious, their amygdala sends signals to their body to fight or flee from the threat, whether it's real or imagined.

Next, talk about the body changes such as increased heart rate, rapid breathing and an upset stomach that power them up to fight or flee. They might even feel dizzy, hot, sweaty and panicked. Anxiety effects thinking and behaviour too.

2. Respond with empathy
In the midst of an anxious moment it’s natural to want to reassure anxious kids they’ve got nothing to worry about. Reassurance works in the short term but it soon wears off and they come back for more, which becomes an unhelpful pattern.

Instead, respond with empathy and validation. Use ahhh statements such as:

 • “Ahhh, I see you’re feeling really anxious right now, I know how hard this is for you”
 • “Ahhh, I know you’re feeling really worried right now, it’s not much fun feeling like that is it?”

Anxious kids need to know you understand what they’re going through.

3. Show the amygdala they’re safe
Once the amygdala senses danger, the cascade of events that follow can’t be stopped. The body and brain will respond as if the danger is immediate. The best way to help an anxious child calm their anxious brain is to teach them to show their amygdala they’re safe. Deep and intentional breathing helps an anxious child to calm their amygdala and will begin to reduce their anxious symptoms. Practise intentional breathing regularly between anxious times before applying this technique in the midst of an anxious moment.

4. Practise mindfulness -the antidote to worrying
Anxiety is distress now about a possible future event, which is why worrying is common for anxious kids. When an anxious child's mind fast-forwards to an upcoming event or expectation, their amygdala can respond as if the ‘threat’ to their safety is immediate. The antidote to worrying is mindfulness. Put simply, mindfulness is paying attention to what’s happening in the present moment. It may take time to learn, but is a powerful anxiety management strategy once it's mastered.

5. Practice defusing sticky thoughts
Anxious thoughts can get stuck, refusing to budge no matter how much attention is payed to them. Defusion is a strategy that helps anxious kids look at their thoughts rather than from them.

Imagine your anxious child is worried about an upcoming test. They’re thinking “I’m going to fail the test”. The thought makes them feel awful. Defusion helps kids (all of us) to look at their thoughts by reminding them that the words in their heads are indeed just words, not reality.

Your anxious child can defuse his unhelpful thoughts by putting a statement in front of the thought such as: “I notice I’m having the thought that I’m going to fail the test.” Alternatively, he can say the thought in a character voice like Darth Vader or Peppa Pig, or sing it to the tune of happy birthday or a nursery rhyme. Defusion puts distance between anxious kids and their thoughts and is a wonderful skill to learn.


6. Get the fundamentals right
Ample sleep, good nutrition and exercise are essential for anxious kids. Support your child to adhere to their optimal bedtime so they wake naturally around the time of their alarm, reduce their sugar intake to support their gut health and to exercise regularly for optimal mental health.

These are some of the many strategies that you can share with your child to support them to recognise and manage their anxiety so they can live life in full colour.


School Information

Whole School Assembly

Every Friday at 3pm in the school hall

Student Banking

Wednesday: Hand in books via classroom

Thursday: Books processed and returned to the classroom

Uniform Shop

Tuesdays       8.45 am - 9.15 am

Thursdays     3.00 pm - 4.00 pm

Woodend Primary School Newsletter
Literacy Challenge.boggle.pdf
Literacy Challenge.boggle.pdf
Literacy Challenge.boggle.pdf
Literacy Challenge.boggle.pdf
2019 Canteen Menu as at 30.1.19.pdf
Literacy Challenge.boggle.pdf
Uniform Order Form.pdf
Qkr - Uniform Shop Orders - HOW TO....pdf