The Upper Primary students have been learning how to keep a budget using Microsoft Excel. Students entered incomes and expenses, then used functions such as Auto Sum, merging and re-sizing cells to manage their money.
The Junior Primary students have been learning different ways to say 'plus' and 'take'. One of our favourite ways of practising these new words is to take it in turns to move a velcro card on to the corresponding side of the wall.
Molly the Mouse - our residential classroom 'pet' - has been very spoiled this month with the addition of 13 mouse-sized books for the Reading Corner. Beautifully made by students in the upper and junior primary classes, the miniature novels depict Molly and her mouse friends in a variety of settings. The adventurous storylines include Molly eating too much cheese on a ferry to Rottnest Island, getting a flat tyre on the way to a footy match at Patterson Stadium and constructing a small torpedo to discourage some annoying seagulls at the beach.
To celebrate National Bird Week this year Ngalapita students took part in the biggest citizen science project to hit Aussie shores. From the 19th to the 25th of October, thousands of people from across the country went out into their backyards to take part in the Aussie Backyard Bird Count. This year BirdLife Australia got a survey from Koorabye Community, adding some of our local Kimberley birds to the count.
Students spent an afternoon in the 'backyard' of the school and used a checklist to record all the species spotted in 20 minutes. We got to know our feathered neighbours a bit better and in the process contributed to a vital pool of information that helps us see how Australian birds are faring.
In Koorabye Community the Zebra Finch (see picture on the left, taken by one of our students) population was faring rather well. Although there were undoubtedly more, one of our students counted 23 through the lens of his camera . We were very careful about the way we collect our data, so it would be accurate. Taking a photo or zooming in with a pair of binoculars helped us determine the different species.
After going back indoors to review our findings we were also able to add a Diamond Dove to our list, which was in amongst the little group of Peaceful Doves near the in-ground birdbath. Its distinctive red eye ring gave it away. In all, we identified 9 different species in our time slot and developed an ongoing interest in the birds around our school.
Ms Teresa is always coming up with interesting new art projects for us, and this month we've been working on two pieces involving symmetry. Symmetry is when each half of a piece mirrors the other. We took photos of our faces, cut them in half, and tried to draw what was missing by looking at the eye, ear, half nose and mouth in the picture. We got some very good results!
“So what was your favourite activity today?” I ask, looking around at the students seated either side of me at the dining table. Immediately, the table erupts into an excited raucous as each student clamours to weigh in on the day’s events. “The raft building!” exclaims one, remembering the adrenaline-pumping finish to our pipe constructions relay. “Mini golf!” shouts another, taking the crumpled score card out of their pocket and smoothing it out on the table proudly. “The treasure hunt!” says a third, thinking of the hidden container of chocolate he had dug up that afternoon. “Boogie boarding,” insists another student, picturing the crystal clear waters of Cable Beach and reliving the thrill of catching a wave into shore.
We packed in all sorts of different activities during our stay at Broome School Camp this year, catering to everyone's interests in our Year 2 to 7 group. We hope we can take a larger group next time to join in the fun!
Check out this colourful creation, made by one of our Upper Primary students. This is the end product of an English assignment she has been working on as part of her Schools of Isolated and Distance Education (SIDE) studies. Using stickers, photos and textas, a comprehensive overview of 19th century theatre has been tastefully presented.
The poster is hanging in Mr Fletcher's classroom for anyone that wants to have a squiz. It will also feature in the SIDE newsletter this term.
We've just wrapped up a very exciting week with Indigenous Hip Hop Productions. A team of talented artists came out to help the community produce a very deadly music video. The students took ownership of the project, picking out the beat they wanted and using Ngalapita culture as the theme of the song as they worked together to compose the lyrics. Everyone had a chance at a solo, as the IHHP team introduced the students to the studio room set up in the donga. After a full day of recording, the film crew were shown around the community where they were able to capture footage of some of the surrounding country. The community came together to film a section of the song at the billabong on Kalyeeda Station. It was wonderful to see family participation. At the end of the week, the students were treated to some group dance lessons. To the delight of all present, the team also put on a show after debuting the finished Ngalapita song. We are very proud of our video and delighted to share it with the rest of the world!
This month Ash from The Edge of Nowhere Foundation (EON) - a WA based organisation that delivers a food and nutrition focused healthy lifestyle and disease prevention program – came out to the school to work with the kids. Students had fun in the kitchen, preparing vegetable kebabs with capsicum, eggplant and zucchini for lunch. Each clad in a pair of gardening gloves, they also helped plant watermelon seeds in the veggie bins at the side of the school. Cow manure was mixed with the soil to give the plants a bit of help!
As our numbers have slowly returned we've been able to play some fun team sports. This term we've been focusing on sportsmanship. Sportsmanship refers to treating other players fairly and with respect. This takes self-control, courage and persistence. One of our favourite games on the court at the moment is Free Ball - a combination of hockey and soccer. These photos illustrate the red and green teams locked in battle. It was a close game, but green came out on top - (this time!) Both teams worked hard on their sportsmanship qualities.
In Science this term we are learning about matter, discovering the different properties and behaviours of solids, liquids and gases. Students particularly enjoyed trying to hold different objects in the Runny Races challenge, to determine whether it was a solid or a liquid. All liquids flow, so if it was getting away through our fingers, it was most likely a liquid!