Alawa Primary School Newsletter

Week 9

Alawa Primary School Newsletter

Welcome to the Alawa Primary School weekly newsletter.

Principal Updates

Welcome to Week 9 - only 4 days at school this week and then a great opportunity for families to connect, unwind, relax and go exploring around our fantastic NT environment. I am heading down to Dundee Beach for a few nights - am sure many of you will also be on the road so PLEASE travel safely!

I was super proud of our students in Years 3 and 5 last week for the way they approached the NAPLAN Practice tests - calmly and confidently. This has provided us with some leads as to what we need to focus on over the next period of time prior to the formal National assessment program mid May. Well done to Mrs Donohue, Mr Lotherington and Ms Hammond for their co-ordination and Mrs Evans for her efforts in ensuring our ICT devices were set up and ready to go. Well done also to the teachers who set aside time to prepare students for the assessments.

Maths Investigations

During Week 10 [last week of term] all classes from Transition - Year 6 will be having fun with Maths investigations. You may recall in the past we have done Potato Maths, Newspaper Maths, Money Maths, Cereal Maths, Paddle Pop Stick Maths. This time Ms Hammond has got us all super excited about Escape Rooms. I have heard the very talented Ms Jeffry has created her own Escape room which the children in Early Years will be tackling. Our students will all be tackling maths problems to solve their way through the rooms. Stay tuned next week for some photos and stories about this.

Student Led Conferences

Have you booked in yet?

It is that time again when families are invited into school for a chat with your child and their teachers. This is the opportunity for you to share their successes, their challenges and their plans for moving forward. See further in the newsletter for details re booking directly online.

 An information flyer with details was shared via email a few days ago. Bookings close Thursday 1st April.

 Have you booked in yet?           Don’t disappoint your child!

Have a safe and happy Easter break!

 Sandy Cartwright [Principal of the Best School in the Multiverse]

Assistant Principal Updates

Hello everyone,

Welcome to week 9.,…. and a short week at that.

Last week we held our practice NAPLAN test and things ran very smoothly. The children in Years 3 and 5 had practise using the various tools to complete questions and carry out expected tasks. They now know what to expect and that it is just about doing their best.

We finished off last week with our Harmony Day Celebrations. It was a wonderful day with some great performances and activities throughout the day. A big thankyou to our organizing committee.

Thankyou to Catherine Miles for guiding us through the process for our artwork. It turned out beautifully. Please see photo. 

Attendance award

As we are all aware regular attendance at school is crucial in enabling each child to be successful. Please ensure you contact the school if your child is going to be away. Next Thursday we would like to acknowledge great attendance. Every child who has 90% attendance for the term [with less than 5 late arrivals] will be invited to enjoy some time on a water slide that we will set up at school. We will also be selling our sausage special at the canteen.

Have a wonderful Easter break with your family.

Genevieve Donohue, [Assistant Principal]

Harmony Day and Assembly

Drop Zone Expectations

  • The purpose of the Drop Zone immediately at the front of the school is for quick drop off and pick up ONLY - both mornings and afternoons.
  • Drivers are required to remain in their vehicles and children climb in and out safely.
  • The cars should be pulled right alongside the kerb - not a significant space away.
  • Maximum of 2mins in the drop zone to facilitate a smooth flow of traffic.

Morning arrival at school: NOT to arrive until 8am

Our gates open at 8am each school day which then allows 30mins for children to come in, connect with mates, play sport, table tennis, settle in etc. A lovely way to start the day.

However lately we have up to 30 children arriving way TOO early and they then wait at the front office for 8am. This is causing congestion and disruption in the front office. We ask that families ensure children DO NOT arrive till 8am at the earliest.

Attendance Reward day - Cafe Special

In conjunction with our attendance reward day next Thursday the 8th April, the Cafe will be selling a lunch special available for all students to purchase. 

$6.00 - Sausage in bread, popper juice and icy pole

Orders can be made via QuickCliq or please note 'Lunch Day special' on students lunch order bag. 

Events calendar

Friday 2nd AprilPUBLIC HOLIDAY - Good FridayAll day
Monday 5th AprilPUBLIC HOLIDAY - Easter MondayAll day
Tuesday 6th AprilStudent Led Conferences - please book appointment by Thursday 1st April3-6pm
Wednesday 7th AprilStudent Led Conferences - please book appointment by Thursday 1st April3-6pm
Thursday 8th April 

Netball Gala day

Attendance Reward day

All day
Friday 9th April

Assembly hosted by Year 2 Ward [Parents and Carers are invited to stay for light morning tea directly following]

Last day of Term 1


Monday 19th AprilSchool resumes for Term 2All day

Preschool news

Last Friday Alawa Primary school and Preschool celebrated Harmony Day. At Preschool we also celebrated all week with both Preschool groups taking part in activities to help celebrate the message of Harmony Day; ‘Everyone Belongs’.

On Tuesday and Friday Mornings Parents and Carers were invited to add their colourful painted handprints [decorated by their preschool child] onto a poster and write the name of their culture under their prints. The result was a beautiful collection of unique handprints and a visual representation of the rich variety of cultural backgrounds that are represented at Alawa Preschool.

We had a go at cooking damper which was really fun to make and even more fun to eat when it was cooked! Children were really good at taking turns measuring and adding ingredients and also enjoyed the sensory experience of kneading the dough to get it ready for the oven.

In our weekly cultural sessions we are Learning about the Larrakia people; the traditional owners of the Darwin and Ganbi regions. This week we learned the Larrakia word for Frill-necked Lizard, which is ‘Dadlawa’. We love learning more about the Larrakia Culture and look forward to finding out about the many cultural backgrounds that are part of our preschool community.

Have a great week!

Alice, Emma, Kelly and Flor  [Preschool Team]

Defence School Mentor news

Does your household receive the Top Ender magazine? This is a tri-service magazine that is distributed to all DHA houses. If you are not receiving your copy of the magazine all you have to do is send the Top Ender an email and ask to be added to the mailing list.

The Top Ender has recently undergone a facelift with the aim of making the magazine more interesting and appealing to the Defence community in the NT. They now have competitions aimed at age ranges from little tuckers all the way up to high schoolers. Prizes will be cash, books, fishing charters, Mother’s Day prize hampers, Lego packs and of course good old Croc Cove family passes. The upcoming edition features a 12 page pull out “Ultimate Guide to the Dry season” with over 150 activities to complete.

Katie Wedel [Defence School Mentor] 


Primary School Average for Week 8 Term 1: 92.10%

It is terrific having all our families back with us at school.

The class with the highest attendance for Week 8: Year 3/4 Baines!

In the lead for Term 1 is... Year 2 Bernardino!


Arriving late for school has a significant impact on your child’s learning and engagement in the education program.

There were 37 late arrivals in Transition—Year 6 in Week 8 Term 1!

The class with the least lates for Week 8 was: Year 1 McHatten!

House Points

Students at Alawa receive raffle tickets [house points] for their attitude and behavior in the playground and out the front of the school at the end of the day, as well as having a go at the weekly quiz. These are then counted on a Friday along with the points from the activity after recess on Friday where we count the students in full uniform, wearing house shirts etc.  At the end of each term we also include the points earnt through the recycling project and water bottle checks.

In Week 8 of Term 1 Manton is ahead of Finnis and Goyder. 

Manton is now in the lead for the year!

Class Points

Muster is held at Alawa after each recess and lunch break - this gives us an opportunity for everyone to settle from playtime, share any celebrations and work on consistency of messages and expectation.

Each day we allocate class points during Muster time recognizing those students who were ready and waiting to go back to class calmly and quietly after break times. The winning class from each 3 weeks will receive ice-blocks from Ms Cartwright and get to choose 5 songs that will play before our bells for the following 3 weeks.

In Week 8 Term 1, the class with the most points was... Year 4/5 France!


Alawa Recycling is not only an important part of our fundraising activates here at Alawa with all proceeds going directly back into the farm, but also a vital step in helping us achieve the goal of creating a more sustainable farm and garden program. 

Items can be deposited into the house bags in the back car park and are counted at the end of each week as each item earns a point for that house. 

Water bottle house point count

Twice a week we tally up all students water bottles and students receive a house point for each one brought in. 

In Week 8 of Term 1 Finnis is ahead of Manton and Goyder with 1560 points!

In the lead for Term 1 is...Goyder with 6030 points!

Kitchen and Nutrition news

We finished off our 3 ingredient challenge week with some interesting creations using a pork cutlet, greens and any type of noodle. The teams came up with some soups, stir fries and salads. It’s always great to see people using the skills they have been learning and using them in these challenges. I also saw some fantastic examples of team work with lots of kitchen points being earned.

Last week was a baking week. We got a big bunch of bananas from the farm and made lots of banana bread, muffins, scones, biscuits and cake. 

On Friday Year 5/6 Hammond joined with their buddy class Year 2 Bernardino and made delicious butter biscuits for Harmony Day. We had some amazing decorations and some very creative biscuit designs.

Next week is one our favourites- wontons and dumplings and we will look forward to this before winding up for the end of the term.

Tina Sullivan [Kitchen Teacher]

Library news

What’s Happening in the Library?

Puzzles have been popular in the library over the past few weeks with one or more on the go all the time on the bench in the Library. If you have the chance feel free to come into the library with your child and spend a few minutes putting a couple of pieces together.

 The past couple of Friday lunchtimes in the Library have seen Students competing in the Dance off trying out to get into the finals. Finals day arrived on Friday along with Harmony Day. At lunchtime the library hosted the Dance-off finals with the winners being announced at Muster after Lunch. The winners were Luke, River, Arlo & Angus  and Finlay, Fern, Salem and Leo - congratulations!

Students also had the opportunity to color in Harmony Day bookmarks.

Sacha Evans [ Library & ICT Manager]

Tek Ninja's

Last week the Tek Ninjas participated in the Bebras Challenge an online computational thinking Challenge. The students worked hard and we are looking forward to finding out how they went in the coming weeks.

They also started working on their projects with some students starting to learn about the EV3 robot which we will be using later in the year for the Lego League Challenge, some students started creating a game based around Numeracy, Literacy or HASS skills and the remainder of students began learning about coding in HTML. 

Sacha Evans [Tek Ninja's Co-Ordinator ]

Classroom news - Year 3 Hughes

As we are coming to the end of our first term for the year, we have been reflecting on some of the things we have really enjoyed so far. Here are some of our reflections:

  • This term I have liked writing narratives and being in the STEM room. I also enjoy having an outdoor learning space. Reuben
  • I have enjoyed having a new teacher. Lucinda
  • I like doing farm and science. Nathaniel
  • Writing and maths have been the best! Caspar
  • My favourite thing this term has been learning to use many different websites. Jax
  • I have enjoyed being able to connect with the Year 3/4 class next door to do activities. Cleo
  • The best thing about this term has been doing technology with Mrs Sullivan. Henry
  • I have enjoyed doing technology because we have learnt to use our emails. Asha
  • The best thing about Year 3 so so far is getting an extra sport lesson. Thomas
  • I like doing visual art. Brooke
  • Quick smart in maths has been challenging but good. Tearakau
  • My favourite thing is the farm. Chanlina
  • I have enjoyed playing with my friends at recess and lunch. Hien Duc
  • The best thing this term has been art. Hamish
  • I like that we get to play on the big kids playground. Maryana
  • This term I have liked learning new things in HASS, maths and writing. Alexandra


Our Mission— is to provide the Alawa School community with delicious healthy meals and snacks and to create meaningful links to our kitchen garden program.


Wednesday – Spaghetti Bolognaise *V option available or Chicken curry and rice

Thursday – Spaghetti Bolognaise *V option available or  Chicken Hamburgers


[Serve $3.00 or large serve $5.50 Spaghetti, Gluten Free Spaghetti $6.50]

A reminder that our school Cafe is open Wednesday to Friday ONLY. Closed on Monday and Tuesdays. 

Order online at  


We had such a great time at Playgroup on Harmony Day! Some of us were wearing orange and we were all ready to play with our friends. This week we baked scones. It was so much fun to mix and stir and get our hands into the dough. We kneaded and pressed out our scones and placed them on the tray. We practiced taking turns and discussed the feel of each process. As they cooked, they filled the Preschool Music Room with a delicious smell.

Other than cooking we enjoyed the puzzles, play dough, stories with our carers and creating a café and serving our carers and each other. Outdoors we all played around the cubby together and explored the play equipment. Morning tea was fabulous, we shared a huge tray of fruit for Harmony day and then each had some scones with jam and cream. What a day!

Next week there is no Playgroup since it is Good Friday, but we will return for the last Friday of Term 1. 

Miss Maria [Playgroup Coordinator]

Student Led Conferences

Students responsible for their own learning!

In order to help you better understand what is going on with your child’s learning, we are continuing to hold Student Led Conferences this semester.

Students will be leading the meeting and explaining to you what they have been learning in various subject areas this year. Your child has reflected on their learning and is preparing to share their reflection and some of their work with you. This will include information about their efforts, achievements and continued focus areas.


Why Student Led Conferences?

Value: Encouragement

Student Led Conferences provide an opportunity to encourage students and share their learning journey. Students are encouraged to reflect on and discuss their learning honestly and openly.

Value: Respect

Student Led Conferences encourage and support students to manage and take responsibility for their own learning. They guide students to develop respect for their learning and the learning of others in the school environment.

Student Led Conferences are an opportunity to meet collaboratively with students about their learning

Value: Pride and Personal Best

Students are learning to assess their own growth through reflecting on their work and learning goals. They are encouraged to consider their learning strengths, challenges and goals. Student Led Conferences are an opportunity for parents and students to recognise effort, perseverance and achievement. They enable students to demonstrate pride in their achievements and learning


What will happen at the Student Led Conference?

·         The student is center stage

·         The student introduces their parent/carer to the teacher

·         Students discuss and share their own reflection, some samples of work and/or achievement data.

·         There will be an opportunity for questions and positive feedback at  the end of each item presented.

·         It is important that adults respect the timing of the conference

·         Parents who need to talk with their child’s teacher as a result or in addition to the conference are welcome to make another appointment to                    have a discussion with the teacher.


Some questions parents might like to ask their child about samples of work and/or data.

·         Tell me about this piece of work/data?

·         What did you do here?

·         What did you learn when you did this?

·         If you did this again how could you improve?

·         What is the data telling you?

·         What do you need to do to improve the data?

·         What learning goals have you set using your data?

·         What are you doing to achieve your learning goals?

·         Have you achieved your learning goals? How do you know?


2021 Student led conferences will be held from 3pm – 6pm on Tuesday 6 April and Wednesday 7 April.

You can now book interviews at times that suit YOUR FAMILY BEST. 


Thursday, 1 April COB


COVID update

Please watch out for any new and important updates required to be sent out via email from Ms Cartwright and in our Covid updates section in the newsletter each week.  Please note that birthday cakes etc can still not be brought in to school to share amongst students. 

Our bubblers are open and available for students to use so please ensure they have a water bottle to fill up each day. 


The Chief Health Officer has declared a hotspot over the Byron Shire Council Local Government Area in New South Wales from 4.30pm today requiring all people returning to the NT to enter into mandatory supervised quarantine.

The Chief Health Officer is also directing those people who arrived in the NT between 26 March and 4:29pm on 30 March 2021 from the Byron Shire Council to self-quarantine and get tested, and remain in quarantine for 14 days, irrespective of returning a negative test. 

The quarantine period starts on the date of departure from a declared hotspot and ends 14 days later, irrespective of how many of these days are spent in the Northern Territory. Self-quarantine may be undertaken at home, or at a suitable address, as long as the CHO Directions are complied with. 

In addition, a watch and wait has been issued for the Gold Coast, while Queensland health authorities continue to investigate links to positive COVID-19 cases and contact tracing is undertaken across the region.  If you have any COVID-19 symptoms, it is strongly recommended that you get tested and remain in self-quarantine until a negative test is returned.

The below Queensland Local Government Areas remain declared COVID-19 Hotspots for the purposes of travel to the Northern Territory from 4.30pm Monday 29 March:

·         City of Brisbane

·         Moreton Bay Region

·         City of Ipswich

·         Logan City

·         Redland City

·         Toowoomba Region

Anyone entering the Northern Territory from a declared hotspot must undertake 14 days of mandatory, supervised quarantine at the Alice Springs or Howard Springs quarantine facilities at a cost of $2,500 per person. Quarantine will be undertaken at the first urban centre you arrive at.

Existing and current CHO testing directions remain for the places and dates listed below and up until a hotspot declaration was made:

·         Those who have arrived in the Northern Territory from the Toowoomba Region from 26 March 2021;

·         Those who have arrived in the Northern Territory from the City of Ipswich, Logan City and Redland City from 25 March 2021;

·         Those who have arrived in the Northern Territory from City of Brisbane and Moreton Bay region LGA’s from 20 March 2021;

·         Those who have arrived in the Northern Territory from the City of Brisbane and Moreton Bay Region Local Government Areas between 12 March            and 11.59pm on 19 March who are showing any symptoms of COVID-19;

·         Those who have arrived, and continue to arrive in the Northern Territory from the Gladstone Region Local Government Area from 25 March 2021.

If you are intending to travel to the Northern Territory from a COVID-19 hotspot you are advised to rethink your plans. If you are a Territorian intending to travel to a hotspot you are advised to rethink your plans.

Please contact the COVID-19 hotline 1800 008 002, to arrange a COVID-19 test. For all other enquiries call 1800 490 484.

The Chief Health Officer will continue to review and assess the COVID-19 situation across Queensland and New South Wales and will take into account COVID-19 monitoring and data collection, the extent of community transmission and risks to the NT community.

The risk of COVID-19 in our communities cannot be eliminated which is why it is important for everyone to follow all health directions.

To stay up to date with the latest information visit

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