Tuesday 28 February 2017

Kauri Whanau: Wainui Camp Day 2

The troops were pretty settled over night and arose to a gorgeous Wainui day. Today has been filled with action and adventure, with six different activities happening. The children have been loving the challenge and showing they care, in the great way they have supported each other.  We finished the day with a night-line activity, which the children enjoyed and parents loved! Everyone is settled down for the night. We're looking forward to another fabulous day tomorrow.

Monday 27 February 2017

Kauri Whanau: Wainui Camp Monday

We have had an awesome first day on camp. The tramp to camp challenged some, but we all made it with smiles on our faces once we saw camp. Once we arrived and settled in, we explored the area and enjoyed some free time. The pasta bake was delicious! Thanks so much to all of the cooks. Dishes are done and we are about to meet the YMCA team for a wide game. Fingers crossed for a good nights sleep.

Tuesday 21 February 2017

Kauri Whanau: Term 1: Week 4


This time next week we will be into the action and adventure at Wainui.  The children are excited, the weather looks great and we just can't wait!

Food preparation:  I am still looking for three more parents to make up a pasta bake dish over the weekend. Please email me if you can help out. nicky.dunlop@beckenham.school.nz

Baking: All children need to bring some baking to camp. This will be collected when they arrive at school on Monday, before getting on the bus. If you would like the baking container back, please make sure it is named.

Gear: The gear list has been repeated at the end of this post. Key items that all children need include:
  • Two pairs of sturdy shoes, one of which will be worn in water (old lace-up sports shoes).
  • A waterproof jacket, outdoor activities go ahead, even when it is raining.
  • Plenty of warm clothing: poly-pro, fleece, wool. This includes a hat.
  • Plates, cup and cutlery – named and in a bag.
  • Wetsuits are provided, but they will need a pair of shorts to wear over the wetsuit if going coasteering.

Please let us know if you are having trouble sourcing any of these items, so that we can help out.

Medication: Any medication needs to be in a labelled bag with name and dosage / frequency and handed in to the child’s home-group teacher on arrival to school on Monday. This excludes inhalers, which the children should carry on them.

Electronic Devices: Children may take devices to camp for the purpose of taking photos. The children will be responsible for their device during the day. We will collect devices in at night. Any device going to camp must be named.  Make sure these are fully charged and on flight-mode as chargers are not to come to camp.

Contacting us: Teachers will have cellphones on us at all times, if you need to make contact. Nicky: 027 6229403, Jarred 021 2305304, Jenny 027 9614005. Reception is a bit patchy. You can contact Wainui camp directly on 03 3048460

Departure and Return: Children need to meet in the Beckenham School hall at 8:50, on Monday. We plan to get back by 3pm on Friday. We will send an email out once we leave Wainui, with a more exact arrival time.

Swimming Sports:

Good luck to all competitors swimming on Thursday. A separate notice will be sent out with final reminders.


Entries are trickling in for our Year 5-8 duathlon on Friday March 10th. Entries close this Friday. Please encourage your child to return their completed form to school.


The math home-learning that we handed out yesterday, is due in on Friday March 10th, a week after camp. Our first writing topic wraps up this Thursday. If your child is not up to date with this, their home-group teacher will send you an email, suggesting they spend some time on this at home.

Photo Gallery:

Last week, as a social studies activity to support our learning about developing a stronger awareness of others, we tried the lap sit. While some were put outside their comfort zone, the teamwork and determination were brilliant.

Forensic science is our science focus this term. We are analysing clues left at the 'murder scene' earlier in February. Last week we conducted tests to identify a mystery powder.

Wainui Camp Gear List:

Please ensure all of the items below are named. Gear needs to be packed into a sturdy bag.
  •  Warm Sleeping Bag or Bedding
  •  Pillow
  •  Pyjamas
  •  Toiletries: Toothbrush, Toothpaste, Soap, Shampoo etc.
  •  Beach Towel and Bath Towel
  •  Plate, Bowl, Mug, Cutlery (named and in a bag)
  •  Waterproof Jacket
  •  Warm Polar Fleece or Woollen Jumpers
  •  T-Shirts
  •   Jerseys
  •  Shorts
  •  Trousers
  •  Socks
  •  Underwear
  •  Thermals / Base Layer (polypropylene or wool) for Coasteering/ Kayaking
  •  Swimming Togs
  •  Warm Hat / Beanie
  •  Sunscreen
  •  Sunglasses
  •  Sun Hat
  •  Trainers or Boots for Land Activities
  •  Sturdy, closed toe footwear for water activities (old trainers are ideal, no thin neoprene shoes)
  •  Torch
  •  Small Backpack
  •  Water Bottle
  •  Any Required Medication
  •  Plastic bags for transporting wet kit home

 Optional Items
  • Camera
  •  Wetsuit. (Wainui provide wetsuits for coasteering.  Children will need to wear shorts over the top of these wetsuits.)

Tuesday 14 February 2017

Kauri Whanau: Term 1 Week 3


Two weeks from now we will be knee deep in adventure at Wainui! Excitement is definitely building. On Monday this week we sent home a paper notice which included a gear list and medical form. Please get the medical form filled in and returned by this Friday (Feb 17th). I will include the notice and gear list at the end of this post. Two parents have already volunteered to make a pasta bake dish for our first dinner at camp; we just need 8 more volunteers. Please email me if you can help out: nicky.dunlop@beckenham.school.nz. All ingredients will be provided.

Swimming Sports:

Swimming Sports 23rd February at Wharenui Pool. We are delighted to have received lots of entries for Swimming Sports this year from the Pohutukawa and Kauri Hubs, with 80 children participating across a range of events.

On the day:

  • All participants must be wearing their togs under their uniform before they get on the bus. They will not be able to change at Wharenui Pool. There will be time to change after the event.

  • The children will have an early lunch at Champion Street before boarding the buses for Wharenui pool at 12 midday.

  • Please ensure your child has a good lunch and a water bottle with them for the day.

  • We are aiming for a 12.30 start and will then run through all events (which are organised by age and distance) for each stroke. There will be a House Relay as a finale. The order of events are as follows: Freestyle, Backstroke, Breaststroke, Butterfly, 75m Medley, House Relay.  

  • We welcome you to join us and support our swimmers. We will have a space for spectators on poolside opposite the children, (who will be sitting in house groups). To support us in running this event, we ask that you stay on the side allocated for spectators.   

  • If you would like to pick up your child after the event at Wharenui Pool, please ensure that you check them out with a teacher.  

We are looking for some amazing parent helpers to assist us with a few jobs on the day. If you are willing and available to help out then please email Jenny on jenny.diggle@beckenham.school.nz.  

If you have any questions, please get in touch with Jenny or Gayle.


With a number of families considering purchasing a device for their children to use at school, you may be interested in checking out Cashmere High School's BYOD recommendations: http://www.cashmere.school.nz/our-school/byod.html

House Warming:

Our house captains and deputies are currently organising activities for our first house event this Friday afternoon. All children will return to Beckenham for this event which starts at 2pm.


A reminder that maths home learning is due in this Friday.

Passion Friday:

Passion Friday kicked off last week. Here are some photos...

Photographers in action downloading and commenting on their photos, which explored different camera angles.

Code club, learning the proper way to code.

Who new that wedding could be such fun?

Planning our approach to J-Rock.

Wainui Camp Notice:

Where: Wainui on Banks Peninsula. We will be travelling by bus and private car, as opposed to two buses. This helps to keep costs down.

When: Monday Feb 27 until Friday the March 3.

Required from you: Please complete the attached Health Profile and return it to school by this Friday, Feb 17th. Parent helpers also need to complete one of these forms.

Parent helpers: We now have enough parent helpers. Many thanks to those who have offered to join us for a fun filled week: Rebecca Hindin, Simon Kingham, Bryan Pratt, Wayne Reddecliffe, Karen Stevens, Ian Newton, Shaun Ryan, Hugh Reynolds and Tamsin Hardwick. We will see you at our meeting next Monday at 5:30pm in the Beckenham staffroom.

Help required: We are looking for 10 parents who would be happy to make up a pasta bake dish for our first meal on camp. We will send home bags of  ingredients next Friday. Please email Nicky if you can help with this. nicky.dunlop@beckenham.school.nz.

Activities: There are a wide range of activities on offer, during which the children will learn new skills, take risks and develop teamwork. The children have made activity choices and we are currently confirming these.

Cost: The cost of Wainui camp works out at $175 per child. This takes into account fundraising profits from the sale of photo-books at the end of last year. As the Student Account statements are not due to go out until after camp as taken place, we would encourage anyone wanting to pay prior to camp (or in installments) to please use "Yr 7/8 Camp" and your child's name as the reference for payments direct to the school's bank account and/or letting the office know when paying via eftpos.  If you have any questions regarding payment, please contact Tracy Dunn at  accounts@beckenham.school.nz.

Baking: We would like all children to bring some baking to camp, for our morning and afternoon teas. This will be collected when they arrive at school on Monday, before getting on the bus. If you would like the baking container back, please make sure it is named.

Gear: Please carefully check through the gear list on the next page, that Wainui has provided. Key items include: a raincoat (activities go ahead despite the weather), thermal tops and bottoms, sunhats and beanies ( we need to be ready for all weathers) and an old pair of closed toe shoes ( old sports shoes) for water activities. We don’t want you to feel you need to buy items for camp; we would rather help you to borrow.

Wainui Camp Gear List

Please ensure all of the items below are named. Gear needs to be packed into a sturdy bag.

  • Warm Sleeping Bag or Bedding
  • Pillow
  • Pyjamas
  • Toiletries: Toothbrush, Toothpaste, Soap, Shampoo etc.
  • Beach Towel and Bath Towel
  • Plate, Bowl, Mug, Cutlery (named and in a bag)
  • Waterproof Jacket
  • Warm Polar Fleece or Woollen Jumpers
  • T-Shirts
  •  Jerseys
  • Shorts
  • Trousers
  • Socks
  • Underwear
  • Thermals / Base Layer (polypropylene or wool) for Coasteering/ Kayaking
  • Swimming Togs
  • Warm Hat / Beanie
  • Sunscreen
  • Sunglasses
  • Sun Hat
  • Trainers or Boots for Land Activities
  • Sturdy, closed toe footwear for water activities (old trainers are ideal, no thin neoprene shoes)
  • Torch
  • Small Backpack
  • Water Bottle
  • Any Required Medication
  • Plastic bags for transporting wet kit home
Optional Items
  • Camera
  • Wetsuit. (Wainui provide wetsuits for coasteering.  Children will need to wear shorts over the top of these wetsuits.)
Not Recommended
Cellphones / electronic items (if taken, these will be collected on arrival), jewellery or money.

If you have any questions don’t hesitate to contact us. There will be another notice next week with final details.

Wednesday 8 February 2017

Kauri Whanau Term 1 Week 2

It was fabulous spending time with you all last week at learning conferences. Thanks for making the time, as it does make such a positive difference to the start of the school year.

Wainui Camp, 27 Feb - 3 March: 

The cost of Wainui camp works out at $175 per child. This takes into account fundraising profits from the sale of photo-books at the end of last year. As the Student Account statements are not due to go out until after camp as taken place, we would encourage anyone wanting to pay prior to camp (or in installments) to please use "Yr 7/8 Camp" and your child's name as the reference for payments direct to the school's bank account and/or letting the office know when paying via eftpos.  If you have any questions regarding payment, please contact accounts@beckenham.school.nz.

As camp is so early in the year, we are unable to carry out further fundraising. We are in the process of applying for funding to subsidise our Year 8 leadership camp later in the term. We are also looking at a major fundraising event to reduce costs of our annual ski trip in the third term.

Maths Home-learning:

All children should have come home today with maths home-learning. This is due in next Friday. If they get confused or stuck on any section, please encourage them to ask their maths teacher for help. We won't bite.


Yesterday we staged a crime scene in the hub to motivate the children for writing newspaper articles, about an authentic crime or incident that they create. We did lots of talking and brainstorming during writing time today to give the children an idea of the planning that needs to happen before the writing begins. We talked with the children about going home and talking with family about their ideas for their crime or incident. Please encourage them to think about this tonight and discuss ideas with you. Tomorrow, Thursday, we will get the written planning underway.

Memory item to share:

Today we started our social studies focus on identity. As a starter, we shared the story 'Wilfrid Gordon McDonald Partridge', by Mem Fox. This story explored the concept of what a memory is. The children have been asked to bring an item to share on Monday, that reflects a memory that they have. The item should fit into one of these sections: 'precious as gold', 'warm', 'makes you cry', 'makes you laugh' or 'something from a long time ago'. Please talk with your child about what they could bring and remind them to pack this for Monday. They are welcome to bring their item in earlier.

Introducing the Kauri teaching team...

Nicky Dunlop: I’ve been teaching for around 27 years now, 80% of this in Year 7 & 8; I love this age-group. I spent 14 years teaching at St Martins, followed by 6 years at St Margaret's College, coordinating their primary classes. I came to Beckenham in 2009 and love working in this friendly and supportive community.  My husband , Grant, is CEO for Workbridge and works in Wellington 4 days a week. Our boys Tim and Jack are in Year 10 at Cashmere High this year. As a family, we love camping, skiing, biking and watching movies on Friday nights. In my down time I love to curl up with a good book, create things and keep fit with a spot of jogging or walking. While I enjoy teaching all subjects across the curriculum, I’m in my element when teaching maths and art. Another passion is using ICT as a tool for learning. The last four years have been by far my best years in teaching. I love working collaboratively and seeing how engaged the students are in their learning. I can’t wait for the school year to start, and look forward to working together with two fabulous teachers to facilitate exciting learning with your children.

Jarred Skelton: I am embarking on my fourth year teaching at Beckenham School and third year as part of the Intermediate Hub. I thoroughly love teaching in the Year 7&8 team, and have been consistenly overwhelmed by the community spirit and support shown by the collective Beckenham whānau. I have many ties to Beckenham, with my brother, father, aunty and grandfather all former pupils and now my son, Fynn, who is entering his first year as a Year Seven student in the Kauri Hub, he’ll have no excuses for not having homework now! My amazing wife Kendall is also a teacher. She teaches Year One at Thorrington School (poor Fynn, living with two teachers!). When I’m not teaching, planning, or hanging out with my family, I am normally on stage at the Court Theatre performing or MCing events. I have worked for the Court Theatre for eight years as an actor, tutor, and a regular cast member of Scared Scriptless. Being a Court Jester has given me many amazing opportunities to travel and work with extraordinary people. Along with my love of drama, I am passionate about music and sport. Having just been married in January 2017, I look forward to taking our honeymoon, to a yet to be confirmed location, this year. I am excited to be working along side Nicky and Jenny, and with all of the children who are part of the Kauri team this year.  

Jenny Diggle: Originally from the UK, I lived and worked in the USA, Canada and Australia before deciding to call NZ home. Five years of working with children at a summer camp in North Carolina, where I taught horse riding, cemented my desire to pursue a career in education. Back in England, my mother is also a teacher and had warned me off the profession for years. Evidently, (and thankfully) she did not succeed, as both myself and my sister are now teachers! After training at the University of Canterbury, I moved to Hanmer Springs to begin my teaching practice at Amuri Area School and then moved on to Gilberthorpe School back in Christchurch before starting at Beckenham last year. I thoroughly enjoy the welcoming community feel at our school and working within a team of such inspirational and dedicated teachers. I’m really looking forward to joining the Kauri Team and I’m really excited about the year to come. I am an avid outdoor enthusiast and enjoy mountain biking, trail running, snowboarding and hiking in my free time. In my down time, I practice yoga and enjoy reading and coffee. Last year I travelled to Nepal where I volunteered in the lower Solukhumbu region as a teacher trainer, which was both a challenging and rewarding experience. I enjoy teaching across the curriculum and have a strong interest in Inquiry learning, Science and Social Studies. I’m very excited about the upcoming school year and the learning journey we about to embark upon together.