Koru Team News: Term 3, Week 9

 Kia ora, e te whānau,

It's been a very busy couple of weeks for us all in the Koru team, as we come close to the end of Term 3. We have had new children start throughout the last couple of weeks, and they have settled in beautifully! Over the last few weeks, we have had some exciting opportunities for our Koru children, including a cricket awareness session, Keeping Ourselves Safe sessions with Constable Meg, and Te Wiki o te reo Māori (Māori Language Week). We have our Beckenham's Got Talent Show coming up on Friday Week 10, and have some of our children performing. The tamariki did an awesome job showcasing their talents at our mini Koru Talent Showcase. 

Mini Koru Talent Showcase highlights:

Three bananas performing...

The bananas escape from the ravenous dinosaur!

Why is 6 scared of 7?

Take a bow!

The 'second hand' shop joke!

Our flexible friends!

Bridges and handstands...

Tricks with hula hoops.

Great spinning skills!

Te Wiki o te reo Māori:

Last week was Māori language week. We have included some cool activities for the tamariki based on different aspects of te reo Māori. This included learning the names of colours and colouring in a rainbow, singing waiata, making bookmarks that had kowhaiwhai patterns on them, and learning new kupu. It has been an awesome week!!


On Thursday 7th September, each home group had an awesome 25 minute cricket awareness session with Cat, from Southern Districts Cricket Club. This was a great opportunity for our tamariki to participate in, and they all enjoyed themselves enormously. The children learnt different skills based on throwing, catching and batting. All the children were engaged and had such a great time! We will be sending out more information soon about skills sessions that are held on Saturdays at the club. 

Keeping Ourselves Safe:

This term as part of our Health Curriculum, teams are teaching the programme called Keeping Ourselves Safe, in Years 0 - 6. In the units, our Koru children have been looking at: 

- describing where they live; identifying things that make them special and explaining when they feel safe and unsafe

- learning to use the correct names for body parts and describing whether a touch is one they like, one they don’t like, or one that is confusing

- learning to say ‘no’ to touch, behaviour and words that worry or confuse them and talking about moving away and seeking help

- identifying the difference between good surprises and bad secrets

- identifying people they trust and understanding family safety rules. 

We have been working with the children these last 2 weeks on our Keeping Ourselves Safe programme and you may have noticed the children have brought home some homework sheets to complete. A reminder that these sheets can stay at home once completed. It has been really awesome to have discussions with the children about their address, their phone numbers, different feelings we may have, and what to do if they get lost. We were also lucky to have 2 sessions with Constable Meg where we discussed what a police officer is, the different body parts, and talking about good touch, bad touch and confusing touch.  If you have any questions about any of this programme, please come and chat to one of the kaiako. 


  • A reminder that we are a water bottle school, and prefer it if the children drink water throughout the day, rather than flavoured milk or juice.
  • Next week is the last week of Term 3. 
  • Calendar Art: We have sent home the information sheets with the code you need to use if you wish to order your child's calendar art. This is only for Elizabeth, Stacey and Georgia's home groups. Please check the photos on the windows to see the awesome work your child has done. 

Some helpful links:
  • Click on these links and join in as your children sing one of their favourite songs, Sprinkle a Little Sunshine (here with the lyrics, and here, without, but with very cute images instead!)
  • For those new families to the Koru team, a link through to the National Anthem which we sing each morning - your children are doing an awesome job with this, participating and trying their very best each morning
  • Clicking here will take you to a variety of links for those of you who would like to read more about The Science of Reading and Structured Literacy.
All best for a lovely last week of term!
Ngā mihi mahana ki a koutou,
Georgia, Sarah, Elizabeth and Stacey

Koru Team News: Term 3 Week 3

 Kia ora, e te whānau,

Wow! What an incredible first few weeks of the term we have had! There has been a lot happening in our hub, across all areas of school life. We have had different themes for our Learning Through Play, such as transport and vehicles, and cafes and restaurants. The children's imaginations have been running wild with these ideas and this is evident in the games they have been playing with each other, and the creations they have made.

Our tamariki are becoming very knowledgeable about the different school-wide "Words of the Week" we have had. We have talked a lot about the first three words we have had this term:

  • Upstander: Standing up for others in situations that aren't right, and supporting others who may need your help
  • Honesty: Being truthful in what we say and do 
  • Inclusion: Making others feel a part of something and including others in your activities/games. 
On Friday, we had our PTA School Disco. There were so many awesome outfits and dance moves being shown off. Have a look at the pictures of some of our tamariki below to see the fun we had:

  • How is the Readathon going at your house? We can't wait to see all the books you have been reading together with your whānau at home. Keep up the great work and remember to bring the forms back into school on Friday, 11th August (Week 4).
  • Next Friday, Friday 11th August, is Book Character Dress-up Day. Your child can come dressed as their favourite story book character. This is a day to celebrate the end of the readathon and all the amazing books there are out there. We cannot wait to see the creativity!
  • A reminder to return Literacy folders to school each day, as we use these during our Literacy sessions. Also a reminder for your child to take really great care of the books that are sent home in these folders, as these books are very expensive to replace and are used within the whole hub. We appreciate and thank you for helping your child to be responsible  and to take great care of our school equipment. 
  • Friendship List: Please remember that if you would like to be on the Friendship List, this will be sent out on Thursday, 10th August to all those who have asked for their details to be included. It is a great way to get in contact with other families and to organise play dates with your child's friends. Please send your details to Georgia's email by Wednesday, 9th August. (georgia.mckenna@beckenham.school.nz).
We hope you are all having the most wonderful weekend and keeping warm!

Ngā mihi mahana ki a koutou,
The Koru team teachers: Georgia, Elizabeth, Stacey, Sarah and Denise


Koru Team News, Week 5

 Kia ora, e te whānau,

We are halfway through term 2, and oh what fun we are having!

We welcome Thomas and Ryland, who began school this week. You have settled really well into our routines, and have done a great job at making friends, following instructions and trying new things. Ka pai, tamariki!

Cross Country:
On Tuesday, May 16th, we had our Junior School Cross Country. It was an awesome event where we saw our tamariki trying their best, giving it a go, and smiling faces when they crossed the finish line! They were superstars at demonstrating our school kete value "We Love Challenge". Below are some photos of the day, and during our practises.

Friday Afternoons with Kauri Buddies:
On Friday afternoons, we do a wide range of activities including Digitech, Yoga, outside play, making creations at the table in the kitchen space, and sometimes completing puzzles.  We are also fortunate on a Friday afternoon to have some Year 7 and 8 students come in and be our big buddies. We do lot of different activities with them, such as: reading books together, playing inside games, doing art, completing puzzles, and playing games outside. It is such a fun time! Some photos below of what we get up to:


Digitech - practising our coding!

Outside play!

Listening to an awesome story!

A few reminders:

Our Library day this year is on a Friday. Please support your child in ensuring their Library folders and Poetry books are brought back to school either on Friday, or beforehand so they can receive a new poem and can issue out new Library books. 

Literacy Folders:
A reminder to practise reading the sounds, heart words, and books (if your child has been given one) at home, and to bring these in every day so we can use them in our Literacy sessions. 

To keep everyone safe when arriving and leaving school, do not walk through the carpark. This area is for staff cars, taxis and accessibility parking only. Thanks to everyone who is using the pedestrian gates onto the park, near the flagpole, on Sandwich Road by the PTA uniform room, or onto Eastern Terrace.

Sickness at school: 
We still have a few cases of Covid-19 in the school, among staff, students and the wider whānau. Please do keep children away if they are feeling unwell and do test if Covid symptoms are present. At school, we remind tamariki to cough/sneeze into their elbow and wash their hands regularly, especially after blowing their nose, coughing, sneezing and using the toilet.

We hope you all have a lovely weekend, and we will see you back on Monday!

Ngā mihi mahana ki a koutou,
Elizabeth, Stacey, Georgia and Sonya

Koru Team News, Term 1 Week 5

 Kia ora, e te whānau,

We hope you have all had a lovely week. In the Koru hub, we have had a very busy week, as we continue with our small group Maths and Literacy learning. The children are doing a great job adjusting to the routines, following expectations, and trying really hard with their learning. They have been absolute superstars!

This week, we welcome Annabelle and Ariana, who started in the Koru Team in Week 4, and Archie, Alex and Violet who started in the Koru team this week. You have all settled really well into the routines and have done a great job at following instructions, making friends, and trying new things. Ka pai, tamariki!

We also welcome back Georgia and Nicola into our Koru teaching team! Nicola will be in for Stacey, generally on Mondays, Wednesdays and Thursdays, for the remainder of Term 1. Georgia has started back full-time, as more children join the Koru team and will be here Monday to Friday. 

Friendship List:

We have decided to extend our Friendship List date until Wednesday, 8th March. If you have not already, please email Georgia (georgia.mckenna@beckenham.school.nz) with your details if you wish to be on this list. This is a great way to get in contact with other whānau to arrange play dates. 

Word of the week:

The word of the week this week has been 'Respect'. In the Koru team, we have discussed what respect means, how we can show respect to others, how we can respect our classroom equipment, and why respect is really important in order to develop trust in the relationships you have with others. If you wanted to discuss our word of the week further, you could chat with your child about what showing respect might look like at home, during your weekend activities, and in different environments. 

House games:

This week, we had our first House Games. House Games involve the whole school and are when the children play different games with other children in the same house. House Games are run by the house captains and deputy house captains. There were lots of different activities that the tamariki tried, and the senior leaders did a great job at running these activities. Our tamariki showed "We Love Challenge", "We Love Learning", and "We Get There Together", through being engaged with the activities, listening to the leaders, persevering and giving the activities a great go, trying their best, and most importantly, having FUN!

Structured Literacy:

We have continued in our small groups, during Structured Literacy time, to learn new letter sounds at Stage 1. Each time a new sound is learnt, your child will be bringing home a few letter sounds to practise at home and these letter sets will be added to, as the children progress. These can be used to practise the pure sounds the letters make and then once children have learnt segmenting and blending skills, they can then use these skills to segment and blend the sounds together to form words. 

You may also notice some Heart Words in your child's sound pack. Our Heart Words are words that cannot be sounded out, simply need to be learned 'by heart' and when the children are at home, can be used to practise reading and writing. Once children are proficient in segmenting and blending the first 8 sounds together, and know the first five heart words, they will start bringing home decodable books to read with you at home. 

Here at school, we have recorded some videos to support our whānau with understanding what our literacy stages look like and what you can do to support your learner at home.

Click on the links below to access videos at Stage 1. 

Stage 1

How to Help At Home

A reminder about the Structured Literacy parent information workshop, to be held here at Beckenham Te Kura o Pūroto, in our school hall, on Thursday, March 23rd, starting at 5:30 p.m. We urge you to do your best to attend this workshop. Emma Nahna is an excellent speaker and we are absolutely certain that you'll find this workshop incredibly valuable! 

Looking for treasure in the sandpit!

How exciting - our new puzzles have arrived!!

Testing out one of the new puzzles! Great work, team!

Beautiful colouring!

Lots of fun with playdough

Great fun with the vehicles!

Creating our sound of the week "M" mouse craft 

What a great session we had on Friday with Whaea Cath!

Our very first House Games!

So fast!

Wow - great work!

Moving so fast!

We love parachutes!

Beautiful colouring, team!

Awesome teamwork!

I love how carefully you are colouring in your butterfly!

Great work coding the Beebot!

Wow - awesome colouring!

Look at the beautiful collage work!

Smiling faces ready to start creating!

Some reminders:
  • Please do remember that our staff carpark is an area through which vehicles will be moving throughout the day, especially at the Hangere end of the carpark, where cars and vans are frequently either dropping off at or picking up from the Ferndale unit; we ask you to please enter and exit the school grounds through the gates at either Eastern Terrace near the public toilets, at the corner of Eastern Terrace and Sandwich Road or near our school flagpole on Sandwich Road. You might also come into our courtyard area from Beckenham Park. Thank you very much for supporting us with the safety of all around our school
  • Please ensure your child's Literacy folder comes back each day. This is extremely important, as our tamariki are adding new sounds and heart words to their sound pack so they can practise their new learning at home, and when their folder is not at school they are unable to take their new cards home
  • Please do ensure that your child's library folder and poetry book are packed and returned to school for Fridays each week. These items can be returned earlier in the week, however if they're not at school for use on Fridays, this can be disappointing for children, especially if  they're unable to get new library books out for the weekend and the week ahead.
Have a wonderful weekend, koutou, and we look forward to seeing all of those wide smiles again on Monday morning!

Ngā mihi mahana,
Georgia, Elizabeth, Stacey, Nicola and Sonya

Koru Team News, Term 4 Week 5

 Kia ora, e te whānau,

It has been a busy first 5 weeks of Term 4, a term which is flying by incredibly quickly! These five weeks have been filled with so much fun, novel experiences, and new learning. We experienced our first house games which were so exciting, and we also spent time using a 'House of Science' kit, during which we investigated many aspects of recycling. Photos from this investigation can be found in the previous Koru Team news post. 

Bug Hotels

During Week 4, we looked into the making of 'bug hotels', and discussed just how useful these can be for insects in the environment around us, the types of materials we might need to make these, and how we might use our school value, 'We Get There Together', by working with others to make our 'bug hotels'. Below are some photos of the awesome process our tamariki went through to produce these mini environments for some of the bugs close to our learning spaces!

Making Boats

During this week, we have been engaging in water play, and conducting experiments to see if we can make boats that actually do float. Our tamariki have loved creating their boats! Below are photos of our children showing 'We Get There Together', 'We Love Challenge', and 'We Love Learning', by working together in groups to make the best boats they can, with the ultimate goal of the boats being able to float. We will be testing the children's boats this coming week (Week 6). 

Kapa Haka Performance

During Week 3, we had the amazing opportunity to perform our Kapa Haka waiata at our Celebration hui. Below are the links to our performances. Our tamariki did such an awesome job and we are all so proud of them! Ka pai, koutou. 

This is their performance of 'Motoka'...

...and this is their performance of 'A E I O U'


We would like to thank you for your ongoing support as your children learn and continue to practise being able to independently unpack their bags and complete their morning routines. 

  • Just a reminder that Literacy folders need to come back each day, because we use what is sent home in our sessions during school time
  • Library day is on Fridays, so thank you for reminding your child to bring their Library folders in either during the week or on Friday to change their books 
  • Your child needs a named hat at school each day
  • When arriving and leaving school each day, we ask that you do not walk your child through the car park area. Many thanks for your support with this
  • Please send your child to school with sunscreen on, and we will help the children to reapply more sunscreen before their big playtime
  • In Week 7, we will be having a trip to the Art Gallery. Information about this can be found on Hero from a post sent out on Tuesday. Further information about this outing will be coming out later in the week ahead
  • The children have been enjoying using the very cool water pump in our sandpit, especially in this beautiful weather we have been having. Having a change of clothes in their bags would be useful for those days when the water is flowing!

We hope you have had a safe and happy weekend, and we can't wait to see your tamariki back at school tomorrow for another awesome week!!

Ngā mihi mahana,

Georgia, Elizabeth, Nicola, Tracey and Stacey