Junior School Report
With the school holidays fast approaching I would like to take this opportunity to celebrate the amazing achievements that have come from our junior school students this term and congratulate them for their improvement in behaviour, respect for their own learning and for the teachers. We have seen some great improvements in GPA’s and student attendance, which has been encouraging. The Junior School is also leading the way regarding correct uniform and the junior school team would like to thank both students and parents for working with us to make this happen. We will continue to have high expectations as far as this goes for the rest of the year and moving forward into 2020.
Miss Taylor has been visiting primary schools in preparation for our new grade 6 students transitioning to Lowanna in 2020; they are enthusiastic and excited about secondary school and are looking forward to our transition days coming up in term 4. Miss Taylor also conducted ‘So you’re a secondary parent now’ information night, with a great turnout by future parents of Lowanna students and Lowanna staff members.
We have had students representing the College in a range of sports including soccer, netball and AFL during this term. These students represented the school with pride and displayed mature, sportsman like behavior both on and off the sporting field.
The college musical, held just recently, was a wonderful success with many junior school students participating. A huge thankyou to Mr. Williams and the music team for their tireless work on making this happen.
Year 8 student have completed their electives for year 9 next year, which will be an exciting time for them as they now have a real influence on their own course selection. Year 7’s also now, get to choose one elective, which gives them more ownership on their learning and assists with transition in the following years.
In closing, I would like to take this opportunity to let the school community know that I will be stepping down from my role of junior school leader effective at the start of term 4. A big thanks to Mr. Hogan for facilitating this transition. My life and priorities have changed with the birth of our first child and I know junior school will be in good hands with Miss Nicole Taylor taking over my position. I have all the faith in the world in her, she will do an amazing job.
I have enjoyed every moment working with the junior school students and appreciate all the support that has come from both parents and students over the years.
Year 7 & 8 Independent Reading Program
Year 7 & 8 Independent Reading Program
As part of Lowanna’s strategic focus on reading the school has developed an Independent Reading program for students in Year 7 and 8. The program was launched as part of Literacy Week and involves students reading for 15 minutes at the beginning of every English and Humanities class. Student are required to bring physical reading material - fiction and non-fiction - to every English and Humanities class and start reading as soon as they enter the classroom. The program will be expanded to Year 9 students in 2020.
Reading is one of the most fundamental skills in education and independent reading, both at school and home, builds confident and successful readers. Independent Reading encourages students to read books of their own choice to increase their enjoyment and engagement with books and to build their reading stamina. It also helps children improve their comprehension, vocabulary and fluency. Teachers support students by holding reading conferences where they discuss the text the student is reading and question them about the strategies they use when reading for understanding. Conferencing allows teachers to assess how your child is progressing with their reading and helps them set individual reading goals.
Other benefits of Lowanna’s Independent Reading program:
- Students will develop stronger reading skills and build reading stamina.
- Students will have a greater desire to read as their fluency, comprehension and vocabulary increases.
- There is a direct correlation between the time spent reading and the amount of vocabulary acquired. The more vocabulary students know, the better students read.
- By reading a diverse range of books and genres, students are better prepared to comprehend reading material in all subjects.
- Students will become more actively involved in their learning and are more motivated to explore reading materials that will benefit their future learning.
- Background knowledge increases and students apply their understanding to different situations.
- Students are exposed to a range of writing styles and techniques.
To assist with the program, classroom libraries have been established in the J building. Whilst we encourage students to borrow and bring their own reading material, the presence of classroom libraries positively impacts on students’ reading habits, attitudes and proficiency. Students have access to books that they may not otherwise have which can generate motivation for reading. To assist the college in providing books for our readers we invite parents to donate any preloved books to the classroom libraries by dropping them off at the General Office.
Reading will equip your child with communication skills which will improve their chances of success at school and in their future careers. Here are some general tips on how to support your child with the Independent Reading program:
- Talk positively about reading, so your child values it.
- Assist your child to have reading material that suits their interests and is at the right level.
- Engage with them in discussions about the books they are reading as this will improve their ability to articulate ideas and concepts.
- Encourage your child to visit the school library and visit the local Moe library to help your child select appropriate books.
- Set aside time for reading at home.
- Model reading to your child.