A Uniting Church coeducational independent day and boarding school on Kaurna Country, Adelaide, South Australia

Early Learning to Year 12

Head of Preparatory School - Edition 11 - 2020

Routine is returning

As the term is in full swing now, it has been a delight to see the children going about their routines. What a strange time we are living in when seeing children involved in ‘standard’ tasks such as playing sport, singing in Chapel or presenting in Assembly is almost worthy of celebration. Apart from our camp program from Years 3-5 being cancelled, our programs and the student involvement in activities has returned to pre-COVID levels. And it is a delight to see – long may it last!

One ongoing restriction, however, is that we are still asking parents to refrain from visiting the School and in particular the classrooms as much as possible. If your child shows any signs of poor health, please keep them home.

Welcome to new students

In the last eNews, we acknowledged the students who have commenced their full time schooling this term. As the majority of them have moved from the Early Learning Centre into our Transition classes, their relocation created vacancies in the ELC.

As a result, this term we welcome a new crop of students into our Early Learning Centre.

The newest Westminster students are – George Askham-Levy; Alex Bowker; Wolfe Hummel-Smith; Sofia Li; Tina (Yueyi) Liu; Jayden Lo; Ping (Xiuping) Lu; Isabella Mao; Oliver (Olly) Margetts; Olive Pett; Adriana Ramsey; Macie Reeve; Oliver Saccone; Zara Startari; Isabella Tan; Harvey Thornton; Oliver Wilson and Milly Wright.

Soccer selection

We are delighted to have four students selected to represent the South West District in the upcoming state soccer championships. Congratulations to Aijay Willoughby (Year 6 Charter), Zach Tucker (Year 7 Clark), Axel Tucker (Year 6 Wyvern) and Seven Ding (Year 7 Fricker). I am confident that they will represent us well.

‘Curious Creatures, Wild Minds’

During Library lessons this term, all classes have started to focus on preparing for the CBCA Book Week. With the theme ‘Curious Creatures, Wild Minds’, students brainstormed what ‘curious’ means to them before having the opportunity to look at six shortlisted books in one of the categories; Picture Book of the Year or the Early Childhood Picture Book category. By judging the books by their covers, something we are usually told not to do, students predicted which they think will be their favourite.


Each week, after hearing one of the stories, students will respond in various ways and, after hearing all six they will vote for their favourite one overall. It is always interesting to see if the favourite book chosen at Westminster is the same as the one chosen by the official judges. With Book Week being postponed until next term everyone will have to wait that little bit longer for the announcement of the winning books and authors.

Book Week normally takes place in August, but this year has been postponed until Week 2 of Term 4. We will not hold a dress-up parade this year, as this is normally a biennial event at Westminster School. Also, at this stage, Week 2 next term is when some classes will have their aquatic lessons which will make the week busy enough. However, there will still be plenty of fun activities for students to enjoy at lunchtimes during Book Week.

Julia Baldwin
Teacher Librarian

Absentees and late arrivals

The Prep School absentee line is T: 08 8276 0255 and is available 24 hours to advise student absentees or late arrivals.

Unfortunately advising absentees to the class teacher via email on the day is not recommended, as circumstances may prevent teachers from checking their emails prior to completing the absentees for the day, and if the class teacher is absent, the relief teacher will not receive the email. If your child is late to school or is leaving early, you will need to sign them in or out on the sign in and out sheet located in the Prep School Office. Absentees are completed soon after 8.45 am and arrivals after this time remain marked as absent unless signed in by a parent or guardian or advised via the absentee line. If your child needs to leave school early or arrives late, we ask that you please complete the sign-out sheet located at the Prep Office so that we have a record of your child’s attendance in case of emergency. Communication about appointments is always appreciated.

First Avenue Reserve Art Installation

Last year a group of students worked with Mr Walker in an Art extension group to design an indigenous influenced play space for the First Avenue Reserve at Marion. This was a collaborative project with the Marion Council, and recently the project won a Landscape Architecture Award!

You can see the award details here: 2020 AILA SA Landscape Architecture Award for Small Projects

The citation from the Judges – ‘The First Avenue Reserve demonstrates the impact of positive community engagement in creating inclusive and playful education projects with modest budgets. The jury commends the City of Marion for their partnership with multiple groups including the Miyurna Kumangka Men's Group, Westminster Preparatory School, and the Migrant Women's group in providing a space for the whole community.’

Congratulations to the students and to Mr Walker for contributing to the park and to the community in such a positive way!

Musical Achievement

Congratulations to William Russo (Year 4 Wyvern) who recently achieved an outstanding result in his Australian Music Examination Board exam. He sat AMEB Grade 2 cello and achieved an A+.

News from the Early Learning Centre

Term 3 has started very well in the Early Learning Centre. We have 18 new children and already they are enjoying the ELC program. This term we are exploring how the world works and the mathematics topic Shape. Our Karaltas are enjoying their Chinese lessons with Miss Liu and all the ELC children are very excited about the arrival of new piglets at the farm.

We are very lucky to have two new educators at the ELC, Haanah Neis Tzavaras and Carla Maio. In the holidays Laura May was married and is now Laura Cownie and last Friday Kim Eng had a baby boy ZhangZheng Tan. Congratulations to both Laura and Kim.

Diary Dates

  • ABODA Festival (Virtual recording) - Thursday 13, Friday 14 and Monday 17 August
  • Year 2 Excursion to the Zoo - Friday 21 August
  • Reception Excursion to Monarto - Wednesday 26 August
  • Prep School Photographs - Monday 24 and Tuesday 25 August
  • Student Free Day/Staff training - Monday 7 September
  • Summer uniform becomes an option from Tuesday 8 September
  • Parent/Student/Teacher Interview Weeks - Week 9, Monday 14 to Friday 18 September
  • Prep Sports Days - Wednesday 23 and Thursday 24 September
  • End of Term 3, dismissal at 1.00 pm - Friday 25 September
  • Code Camp will be back at Westminster School from 30 September to 2 October
  • Term 4 commences – Tuesday 13 October

Grant Bock
Head of Preparatory School