Welcome to Waitahuna School's updated Blog. We are excited to share some of the learning that we do everyday at our fantastic school. Included in our Blog are links that will help with supporting learning at home.

Tuesday, June 5, 2018

Cheese Rolls anyone?

A huge thank you to our school families and friends of Waitahuna school for the massive fundraiser on Queens birthday Monday. 
800 dozen cheese rolls were made, that’s 9600 cheese rolls! 
Perfect timing with snow forecast for tomorrow.
A huge thanks to Nat for doing all the ground work with this mammoth fundraiser and Sarah for helping keep the team fed.

Thursday, May 10, 2018

News from the Otago Daily Times

News from the Otago Daily Times:
Waitahuna School pupils run through their ''Kingston Flyer'' 32-bar reel Scottish dance routine yesterday, in preparation for the Lawrence Ceilidh next Friday.
Stepping out (from left) are Amber Cunningham (7), Issy Young (9), sisters Beth (8) and Elsie Homer (10), Cameron Brown (10), and Waka Tuwhangai, Charlie Young, and Levi Gazeley (all 9).
Ceilidh organiser, Lawrence Scottish Country Dance Group teacher Quentin Currall, said many of the children had Scottish ancestry, and the dance demonstration offered them another link back to their heritage.

Thursday, May 3, 2018

Kids being kids at Waitahuna School

It is interesting sitting and watching what children do at lunchtime without the involvement of teachers.
- Children lined up and taking turns
- the risk-takers taking risks
- the workers working
- the spectators supporting
Chance of accident - probably,
Chance of learning, definitely.
(No children were harmed during the making of this video)

Wednesday, April 11, 2018

Saving the World one step at a time

We have been very busy since our recent visit from Libby and her bamboo bike (our cycling visitor who came to spread her message about not using single use plastic.) 
During her visit she told the children that they were superheroes who had the power to change the world.

This week the children were asked the question : How could they make change in our own community? That definitely got them thinking.

The children created posters spreading the messages that Libby had shared with them (that was the fun bit) but then the teachers told them that as superheroes they also had to ask our local shop-keepers if they would display the posters in our local shops and cafes. This was challenging. 

Letters were drafted, sharing facts, pleas, and favours asked, letters were then typed and delivered to our local Lawrence and some Milton businesses.

Through this we have found some wonderful things that these businesses are doing.
😊 Suzanne and Owen at The Corner Store in Lawrence have paper straws.
😊Jim and Sue at The Wild Walnut have compostable coffee mugs, and all of their take-away packaging is compostable including bamboo cutlery.
😊Tony and Julie at the Lawrence 4 Square sell reusable bags... and when you take you reusable bags in it makes it much easier to bag your groceries and less chance your bread will get squashed.
😊Elisa at the Lawrence Mint packages her chocolates in cardboard packaging and her plastic bags are made of cornstarch which is all recyclable.
😊Shelley and Reuben at the Coach ‘n’ Horses and Gabriel’s cafe have the best fish ‘n’ chips wrapped traditionally in paper.
😊Liz at 26 on Ross has a special price for coffee if you bring in your reusable coffee cup.
😊Nicky at Fidelis cafe (Milton) was so proud of the request that she displayed the letter and the poster! 

This small project has given hope to us all and showed us the great things our local shops are doing. We hope the members of the public will also do their bit.


Friday, April 6, 2018

Waitahuna Community Harvest 2018

Today Waitahuna School held their annual community harvest, Apple Crumble our project. 

Firstly came the walk around Waitahuna picking apples off the roadside trees. Some ingenious ways were used to get the apples from the upper branches and some great team work involved in catching them. 

Then to peel and chop the 3x 10lt pails of apples.  A mammoth effort. 

Only the smallest hands could be used to place the garden picked blackberries on each pudding, with the crumble sprinkled by the Juniors.

We hope the community members enjoyed the dessert made by the great team at Waitahuna School 🍎🍏

Thursday, April 5, 2018

The Junior Room Firewise visit

Today the Junior Room had a visit from Aaron Collins the “Firewise”  fireman.  Aaron and the children talked about how to stay safe and get out in case of fire.  “Get out fast and make a plan with your family”. Tonight the children will be bringing home their own Firewise book to share with their family.  

Aaron also showed the children all the safety gear that he needs to be a safe firefighter.  

Tuesday, March 20, 2018

Our visit from Libby on her Bamboo bike

By Elsie Homer age 9

Today Libby @treadlighter.org came to a Waitahuna School to share her message about looking after our environment and not using single use plastic.

She told us about all the plastic in the sea and how it is killing off our sea life. There are animals like seals, sharks, stingray and turtles getting caught in plastic or mistaking the plastic for food and eating it. The bad by is when they eat it the plastic makes them feel full and they won’t eat for a long time and starve or if you are a turtle the plastic you eat makes your body float to the top of the sea and you can’t get back to your place in the sea that you eat and live! 

She also talked about how there is too much plastic in the world. The 4 worst plastic items are coffee cups, plastic bags, plastic bottles and straws. So next time you order a drink that comes with a straw say “no straw please”.

Libby said that after being an Ocean Scientist she became a teacher. She always said to her students that they can be ‘superheroes’ and save the world. One of the kids asked her why doesn’t she go and save the world herself? So Libby became a tourist and now rides around the world on a bike she handmade out of bamboo!  She also put a light on the bike and when she pedals electricity is made which runs the light and a USB that chargers her phone! 

At the moment Libby is riding her bike around New Zealand teaching kids about being plastic free and not using ‘single use’ plastic.


Tuesday, March 6, 2018

Reducing lunch waste - making lunch wraps

At Waitahuna School we are trying to cut down our lunch box waste. We already recycle our yoghurt pottles and feed most of our food scraps to our worm farm.
Today we took up the challenge to make food wraps to use in our lunch boxes. It was a challenging task which involved cotton fabric, and our secret beeswax formula. As always it involved a lot of team-work with the seniors supporting our younger pupils. The wraps will be arriving home on Monday and we look forward to seeing our waste reduce further. 🌱

Garden Harvest Challenge

Classroom challenge at Waitahuna School today with the Senior Room thinking how to use our school garden zucchini and the Junior Room thinking how to use the potatoes. 
The Junior Room came up with Hackleback potatoes which were delicious and the Senior Room ... Chocolate zucchini cake! Neither dish lasted long and we are proud to say that all the vegetables were eaten.

Tuesday, February 27, 2018

Beneficial Bugs

Today at Waitahuna School we learnt about ‘Beneficial bugs’. We discovered that although white butterflies are a pain and their caterpillars eat our cabbages and the farmer’s swedes, ladybird larvae are beneficial bugs and they eat the pest’s caterpillars and eggs. Some other beneficial bugs are the hoverfly and the lacewing (we didn’t even know what a hoverfly or lacewing looked like- we do now!)
This afternoon we made a Bug House to accomodate the influx of visitors that we want to welcome to our garden. 
Some of the beneficial insects we hope to attract include:
* Bees – solitary and native. We are hoping they will find shelter to lay their eggs and rest over winter
* Lady bugs – predator of aphids and mites are said to enjoy nesting and resting in twigs and sticks
* Hoverflies – also a predator of aphids plus a pollinator of plants also like to nest and rest in twigs and sticks
* Lacewings – their larvae feed on aphids and mealy bugs. They like to rest and nest in straw and wood

A huge thanks to Sarah Swinbourn our local PGG Field Rep for sharing her knowledge with us. 

Nichol's Garden Centres
NZ Gardener magazine
PGG Wrightson Ltd
Go Gardening

The beginning of the 2018 Garden Harvest

‘To plant a garden is to believe in tomorrow’

An exciting day in the Waitahuna School garden today with the beginning of the 2018 Harvest. 
We have had a great growing season and are thrilled with our crop of potatoes. It was also great to see the children’s hands thick in soil searching for them. Also being able to vine ripen tomatoes at school must be a first. 

‘Life’s a garden dig it’

Small School Athletics

Another busy day at Waitahuna School as we competed in the ‘Small Schools Athletics’ in Balclutha. Although the teachers were kept busy at the high-jump it is brilliant to hear the positive feed-back about the children’s effort and prowess. 
Also a huge congratulations to Waitahuna School’s young relay team who won their heat against some very strong competition.

Friday, February 9, 2018

Berwick Camp

Waitahuna School has just returned from their 2018 camp to Berwick. 
This was a fantastic camp where the children’s goals were simple, to challenge themselves and work as a team - they achieved both.
A huge thanks to the parents who support us in all that we do.

Sunday, February 4, 2018

Please help Waitahuna School get some books

Waitahuna School is pleased to be taking part in the Kelloggs and New World initiative to get books in schools.
If you buy two Kelloggs items from New World BALCLUTHA, please pop your receipt in the WAITAHUNA SCHOOL box. 
Each receipt helps us get free books. Thanks for your support.

Monday, December 18, 2017

Waitahuna Song - version #2

Before we sign off for the year we thought we would share another rendition of our song ‘Waitahuna’
Thanks for all the positive feed-back and comments.

The launch of our song ‘Waitahuna’


A huge congratulations to the pupils at Waitahuna School for their performance in the ‘Kiwiana Concert’. A brilliant night of singing, dancing, ukulele playing and acting. 
Also an amazing launch of their song ‘WAITAHUNA’ written and composed by the children with the guidance of the teachers. 
Congratulations to you all on a successful year. 
Happy Holidays from Ms Johnstone and Mrs Blackmore


The Waitahuna River weaves us together
The train station stands whatever the weather
Our farms are rolling and green with feed
Producing the lamb that the whole world needs

Small school where we all learn big  
A swimming pool and a garden to dig
Trees to climb and keep us cool 
That’s Waitahuna School

Mt Stuart’s turbines stand on the hill
Harnessing the power that lowers our bill
Their lights, a beacon, through the district glow
Forecasting the Antarctic winds that blow


The Waitahuna Hall is on the main street
It’s a wonderful place for the locals to meet 
The velvet curtains still hang with pride 
The children’s faces beaming inside


Waitahuna’s small but our bond is forever
Our school is the glue that holds us together
Grandparents, neighbours all stand as one
Together we sing and we all have fun


Celebrating the Oaks 125th

Today at Waitahuna School we celebrated a birthday! 125 years since our two oak trees were planted in 1892 to celebrate the inaugural ‘Arbour Day’.
We talked about the children and community members long ago that these planted trees for us all to appreciate. 

We always love these special trees but this week they have been even more valuable as we have held our lessons under them to escape the 28
- 30 degree days. 

We also celebrated with cake!

First Swim of 2017

Thursday, December 14, 2017

Thanks Pioneer Energy

A huge thanks to Pioneer Energy for their sponsorship of our School sign. We are thrilled with it.

Monday, December 11, 2017

Kayaking the Waitahuna River

Today the Senior Room from Waitahuna School kayaked the Waitahuna River. It was a fantastic experience for all involved. 
We can also report back that the Waitahuna river is as clean and pristine as ever. 
When we arrived at the Waterfront in Waitahuna we were welcomed by the Junior Room who had spent their morning making pizzas for our lunch. 
A huge thank you to the parents who made this possible especially Tony, Sarah, Renee and Hannah.

Concert 2017

Friday, November 10, 2017

Pet Day 2017

Well what a week we have had at Waitahuna School. 
Parents doing school tailing on Monday, Ukulele on Tuesday, Snow on the ground on Wednesday with a visit from Pip and the Life Education Classroom, and thankfully the sun shone on Thursday for PET DAY!
The Pet Day was a great success. The children were excited and keen to share their pets. The parents were able to catch-up, visit the classrooms and see the children's work and competition entries on display.
The dog agility course was a highlight and the Grand Parade was a spectacle!
A huge thanks to the parents for supporting this event and a special thanks to Larissa for capturing the photos.

Click the image above to see some photos of our Pet Day