Wednesday, 28 March 2012

How can we get more devices in the Harakeke Hub?

One of our inquiry groups is looking into ways to get more devices in our hub.  As the term has gone by there have been many times that we have not had enough computers.  We think that children would be able to share even more of their learning with you if they were able to take a device to and from school.  We have no idea if this is possible or not, the group is thinking up many ways we could raise money etc. Here is a letter from them to you. 

Dear Parents,

We are writing to you because we need more computers in our hub.

We need them because we have found that when we are doing our learning we don't  have enough.  We use computers for our reading for maths and for writing.  We would be able to do more learning at home and at school if we had more computers.  

If we had our own laptops we could take them home and keep learning after school and in the weekends.  If we had our own laptop it would be like having our own desk that could travel with us almost everywhere.  We could also show you all the learning we do at school.

We haven't decided exactly how we will make this possible so we would like to ask you.  Here is a survey that we would like you to fill in so we can get your opinion.

Yours sincerely,
Matt, Germain and Samuel
The 1:1 computing committee
(Supervisor Tara)

The Learning Process - WASPS!

In Harakeke Hub we have been doing a lot of learning around our learning process (see picture above).  We have been using this model in our inquiry research and on Friday we used it to ponder age old philosophical questions such as What is real? or What is happiness? We have learned that sometimes we can be in the 'problem space' for a very short time and sometimes we can be in there for as long as days, weeks, months or even years!

Over the term we have had an authentic interaction with the world.  We have a wasp problem!  They are stopping the children in both Koru and Harakeke from enjoying our lunch!  Yesterday afternoon we decided to take action and see if we could use our research skills to make sense of this genuine problem.

In teams we discovered that:
  • Wasps have a strong sense of smell and like to follow sweet smells such as food and perfume
  • Wasps are attracted to bright colours (not so much red)
  • They like to nest in dry places, banks, ceilings, near bee hives, and in trees
  • Wasps to the world are like the appendix to our body
  • Wasps make nest by chewing bark and then spitting it out and waiting for it to dry (much like paper mache) 
  • Wasps eat jam, bee’s blood, honey, cakes, alive and dead insects, anything really, apple cores, food in bins, lots of sweet things, fish sandwiches and bread (some of this knowledge came from prior experience)

It is now time for a purposeful response. Here are some of our ideas:

  • We could put things that they eat in a box and trap them.
  • Litter-free lunch boxes - take it home trash
  • Ask people who are not afraid of wasps for advice (exterminator / pest control)
  • Put lids on our bins
  • Colour the bins red

How do you think we could solve our wasp problem?

Tuesday, 27 March 2012

Soccer Tournament

Today we entered our very first sport tournament for Amesbury School.
It was a grueling day, with 7 soccer matches in four hours!
We were impressed with how well the students played as team, showing increasing amounts of team spirit and cooperation through the day. This was particularly pleasing because the team has only just started playing together.
The Amesbury team won their first match, lost two games and drew four games.
We played in the social grade today and we are really looking forward to next week when the team will participate in the competitive soccer tournament.
Big thanks to our coaches, John Murrihy and his daughters Zara and Serena, and also to the parents who transported us to and from the competition and/or stayed through the day to support us. 

Amesbury's first soccer team

The formidable combination of Matt and Tom

School Tour Survey

Hi my name is James. I'm in the school tour group. In the future we are going to have lots of visitors because our school is new. So, my group is in charge of setting up the school tour. We want to show visitors the best features of Amesbury School.

Please fill out the survey to help our inquiry group!

Thanks for your time.

Saturday, 24 March 2012

School Lunches Meeting

On Thursday the school lunch inquiry group (Grace, Ethan, Hannah, Rosa and Amber) attended a meeting at Novotel in Wellington with the general managers and chefs of Novotel and Ibis hotel.
The students discussed their ideas so far for setting up student run school lunches at Amesbury School and asked our experts for some advice.
Philip, Nathan and the chefs were extremely helpful in helping with menu ideas and sharing lots of useful advice about setting up and maintaining a cooking enterprise. They gave the group a lot to think about and the students are now thinking this inquiry might last a lot longer than anticipated!
Huge thanks to Philip and Nathan from both hotels for setting up the meeting and for their ongoing support with our school lunch inquiry.
Rosa, Grace and Hannah at the meeting

Getting expert advice from Novotel and Ibis hotel

Waiting for the bus back to school

Tuesday, 20 March 2012

Week 8 News

Already we have been very busy in the Harakeke hub this week! We have been learning new skills so that we can take control of our independent learning.

Our inquiry groups have been so busy making google docs and forms that we have had to learn how to organise it all into collections! We have also started using our google calendars for our workshop sessions and inquiry meetings.

In Te Reo Maori we have been learning to identify the steps of a powhiri and in music we are learning ukulele and the glockenspiel. We have had several workshops including independent reading, spelling skills, comprehension, posting quality comments, test preparation and emailing tips. Later in the week we will be having place value, statistics, and multiplication array workshops. Our inquiry groups are making real progress and the school lunches group are going on an adventure on Thursday.

The media crew are hoping to get their first news show to air over the next few days (watch this space). They are writing, presenting, filming and editing this all on their own so constructive feedback will be greatly appreciated to identify future learning steps. Be ready for some important surveys coming your way from the inquiry groups.

The soccer team has began their practices, we are boundary bolting when the weather permits, and the librarians are continuing to do a great job reading to the children from Koru.

We also have wonderful things popping up in the school (like the new hall and our new projectors) but I will leave that up to the media crew to fill you in on that!
Madi and Tais reporting from the new hall

Wednesday, 14 March 2012

Inquiring Minds

Harakeke Hub spent some good quality time today working on our inquiries. Our inquiries focus on the continuing setup of Amesbury School, and how we can best showcase our awesomeness. Here's what went down...

What was your area of inquiry? What did you learn today?

A special visit

What did you like about the special visit?

Tuesday, 13 March 2012

Thank you for your Ice Cream Data

Thank you to those who filled in our survey.

After careful analysis we have found out the following:

More girls than boys filled in our survey - (22 girls and 3 boys)

11 kids (aged 4-10) and 14 adults (aged from 28 - "much older") filled in our survey.

Cookies and Cream was the most popular flavour.

Most people LOVE ice cream. No-one ranked it lower than 3 on a scale of 1-5)

We had many variations on favourite sprinkles ranging from crushed tim-tams to nuts!

Thanks again for taking time to respond!

Monday, 12 March 2012

CAMP PhotoPeach

CAMP the quiz on PhotoPeach

adam, karina, samuel on PhotoPeach

jasmine kaela on PhotoPeach

max tom ethan on PhotoPeach

Friday, 9 March 2012

Breaking Mathletics News

Week Six in Harakeke Hub

Last week we started Mathletics, but we're using it a lot more this week.
We think it's fun because you can compete against other people in the world.  It's really good for your learning because you get to do things that help you in your own maths.  We also used the Smart Chutes which are a kind of plastic toy which turns cards with questions around, and helps us with basic facts.
We also did Statistics this week.  We made a Google form survey.  This helped us find out information and then we are going to analyse it.

We have been having meetings with our inquiry group.  Some of the meetings are about lunch orders, recycling, community garden, media crew, more technology devices, senior reading resources,emergency supplies, and tours for the visitors that come to our school.  The purpose of our inquiries is to get us involved in school decisions and give us good learning opportunities.  The meetings were quite fun and we got to talk about our ideas - we also got to eat chips and lollies!

Things we enjoyed this week
Inquiry meetings because we learnt more than we thought we would.
Kickball because its's a game we've never played before.
Problem posing because we got to make up problems for people to solve from home.
Photopeach because we got to look at different photos that are really goofy and really cool!
Mathletics because lots of the games are quite fun.

What did you enjoy doing this week?


To get ready for our exciting inquiries we are learning about gathering data through a google form. Below is a very simple survey that we would like many people to fill out so that we can practice working with the data. Please fill this in and share it with your friends and family.

Adults and children welcome!

Wednesday, 7 March 2012

Tara's Writing Workshop

We got these very good questions today. Could you please answers these as a comment.

To the children of Amesbury School

We heard you are a very new school. We are learning about what makes a great classroom and we will be designing our own classrooms. We would like to ask some questions about your school. We hope you can help us.

How is your classroom set out? What is your furniture like (do you have your own desk)? What equipment do you have to help you with your learning?
How is your school organised (classrooms, syndicates etc)?
What do you learn?
How is your day at school organised?
How is this school different to any other school you have been to? Is the learning easier or harder?

We would really appreciate it if you could answer as many questions as you can.
Thank you

Peachy Camp

We have been busy in the Harakeke Hub learning how to display our photos using PhotoPeach.

We have many that are almost completed so watch this space!

In the meantime check out Tais and Anjelica's one.

taisanjelica on PhotoPeach

Tuesday, 6 March 2012

T-Ball Action

Today in Harakeke Hub between learning how to operate a collaborative Google Doc and learning how we learn (using the Koru Learning Process™) we took a bit of time to have a game of T-Ball. Homers were hit, catches were made, and much fun was had.

What impressed me today was how much everyone has been improving - not only in the skills it takes to play T-Ball (catching and throwing, fielding, batting, running) but also the WAY we played. Everyone was being supportive and respectful of the other players, and everyone showed fair play. There was lots of encouragement and enthusiasm, even when things may not have been going our way.

Did you have fun today?

What does it take to make a team-based game of sports run effectively?

How could these skills translate into more classroom based collaborative work?

Emily with an epic hit. Michael celebrating.

James running in exuberantly for a home run.

Matthew with one of his trademark huge hits. Notice the good form.

Hannah celebrating a homer

Emily bounding like a gazelle to first base.

Adam hitting one of his three home runs.

Friday, 2 March 2012

Last news report from Harakeke Camp

Some camp pictures

(vid available soon)

Day 2 stills from Tara Jorgensen on Vimeo.

Harakeke Hurrahs for Camp Help

Harakeke hub would like to thank the many people who helped us on our first hub camp.
Big thanks to David Waters for letting us use his land, for his help in the forest and with making our amazing shelter, and for bringing along Robin (Dr Bob) who showed us neat science tricks and facts (ask your child/ren to show you the amazing disappearing minto trick!)
Thanks to David Robiony-Rogers for being such a stalwart helper staying overnight with us and helping in the forest, and also to Chris Lockery for his fantastic support in the forest.
A big thanks to all the parents who helped us with transport to or from the forest, and to everyone who provided the delicious snacks and treats to share.
A great time was had by all, largely due to the support we received from you all.
Thanks again, from harakeke hub.

Lunch is made!

...and we're off! (Nearly)

Tom reporting live

Then sun is up and so are the children!

Thank goodness for the coffee machine!