Marriene Langton Principal

Marriene Langton Principal

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Pohutukawa/Junior Sports Day/Tux Wonder Dog on PhotoPeach

Pohutukawa Sports Day or Herding Cats Day. on PhotoPeach

West Spreydon School Splash Day on PhotoPeach

Kids For Kids World Vision Concert

Kids For Kids World Vision with Suzanne Prentice on PhotoPeach

Tuesday, November 16, 2010


We were so privileged this year to have Al and Kari to assist with Kapahaka. Kari is mum to two of our students and has given her time to us to teach poi and waiata.
Al has led with his typical humour and determination to make a difference for children. He gives a lot of volunteer time to our school and the staff and children love him. I have to say he is a bit cheeky  and doesn't seem to realise how important I am.! Shirley Haynes is fluent in te reo and has been a fantastic  teacher support for them.

Al just seems to have an endless source of energy and goodwill. Try as we might we just can't wear him out and he keeps coming back to work with the students in kapahaka, Adventure Programme and Touch Rugby.

There are so many factors that contribute to a wonderful school but mostly it comes down to the people. We do have the best resources but without the volunteers, board of trustees, mums and dads, teachers and support staff we would be no different from any other school. And by gum we are awesome.

End of Yearitis and Retail Therapy

It's been interesting to plot the changes in some of our children over the past few months as we have adjusted to life with earthquakes. From time to time we are seeing evidence of stress in the form of  niggles, tears and arguments. Thank goodness the teachers are doing a lot better!!!
When I am stressed I go shopping and as a result of our roll growth this year we were able to replace a lot of technical equipment and appliances identified in our budget but pending funding. I have an amazing office executive in Jacqui who can turn a dollar into $10.40.
We had a pod of laptops coming out of their lease this month and we decided to buy twelve new laptops to add to the eight that the PTA had purchased.
Donna had the laptops in her class this week and it was fantastic to watch the children using applications to present their work in power points and movies. Donna is a bit of a techie freak and she admits that she learned new things by watching the students. How good is that? We now have a large range of cameras, flip videos, data projectors, laptops and desk tops for the students to use as part of their learning programme. Some of them are so quick at accessing information, photos, video etc and including multi-media in their ways of learning and presentations of learning.  Gone are the days of ploughing through a book to find the one paragraph relevant to the learning. In a few minutes children can access several sources of information about the same topic and they are learning to discriminate between reliable and dodgy sources. That involves higher levels of thinking and the ability to sort and separate facts from fiction.
What I enjoy seeing are the children who struggle with "pen and paper, teacher- talk -at -me" learning, actually making independent decisions and becoming involved in real learning because the technology makes the learning fun. Suddenly the "kids who can't" become the "kids who can and do!"

The lovely blonde is Olivia our teacher aide who graduates with her BSc this year and will go into teacher training in 2011. Olivia will be greatly missed by our staff and students. We have been very blessed to have had her on our team.

 We are installing a 42" flat screen t.v. in the admin area to run continuous data shows and videos of life at West Spreydon School. Kaye my clerical assistant thinks it is for her to watch daytime soaps and Oprah! She's in for some heartbreak. Mind you I can see the teachers in the foyer on a Friday night, passing the pop-corn and fizzy, watching a movie on the big screen. Yeah right.