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.

Friday, December 16, 2011

Christmas in the Park

Click the photo above to see a 'shortened' version of the
12 days of Christmas
Yesterday Waitahuna School held its end of year celebration 'Christmas in the Park'.  The children entertained a large crowd in the school grounds with 7 items.  Starting with a Maori welcome through song and dance,  then a bracket of songs about being a 'kiwi kid celebrating a New Zealand christmas', and finishing with 2 traditional carols. All children were awarded certificates for their achievements through the year, and our Year 6 leavers were presented gifts for the completion of their schooling at Waitahuna.  At the end of the concert the children showed the true meaning of Christmas and presented all the guests with truffles, shortbread and plants that they had baked and grown at school. 
Well done Waitahuna pupils you have made your community very proud! Enjoy a safe and fun-filled holiday with sunny days and a little bit of rain at night - (we have to keep those farmers happy)
Merry Christmas from Mrs Blackmore

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Design a Christmas card winner

It has been fantastic to see the effort put into our 'Hands on homework' challenges this term.  Our final challenge was to design a Christmas card with a New Zealand theme.  We were very impressed with the entries and would like to congratulate our 1st prize winner : Jack Murray

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Christmas in the Park - this Thursday 12am at school

At school we have been discussing Christmas and its true meaning.  We have discussed that Christmas is not simply about what we get, but more importantly about giving to others. The story below shows these values in a very real context.

We have all been very busy practising for 'Christmas in the Park' which will be held this Thursday.  Last Thursday when we were outside practising some songs we were very interested to see a vehicle drive slowly around the school block.  To our surprise the vehicle parked by the side of the road beside the tennis courts.  The children didn't let this phase them and continued practising their singing. As we watched a couple climbed out and started having a picnic while listening to the children singing!  In the true spirit of Christmas our Year 6 students carried over a plate of truffles that we had been making that morning and gave it to the couple to have with their picnic.  The children received some lovely feed-back on their singing, so we hope you are equally impressed with our traffic stopping performance on Thursday - We look forward to seeing your there.

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Hands on homework - Our last for the year!

That's right. Our last 'Hands-On homework' challenge has been posted.  Look under the 'Hands-On homework' tab to see the full details.  The picture below may give you a clue. from Mrs Blackmore

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Dairy Farm Visit

We had an interesting and informative visit to the Dairy farm at Telford.  If you click the link below you will be able to see a short video we made of our trip.
The Dairy Farm

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Hands-On Homework ~ Week 6

We had a great response to last weeks Hands-On homework challenge.  Fantastic effort from the Junior Room with 3 pupils taking part and1 pupil from the Senior Room. Ms J , Mrs Blackmore and our biggest Blog fan 'An Interested Person' also took part.
  This weeks challenge has been posted under the 'Hands-On homework' tab and we look forward to seeing if the Senior Room can this week have more children taking part than the Junior Room!

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Hands on Homework - Week 5

This picture might give you a clue
of the next challenge!
Well done Waitahuna school.  Last weeks hands-on homework had the most interest from children and viewers to the Blog!  The photos of you helping in the kitchen are great, check them out under the 'Hands-On homework Tab.

This weeks challenge has been posted!  I can't wait to see who gives it a go! Check out the 'new' challenge on the 'Hands-on homework Tab.

Remember to share the Blog address with Grandparents, family and friends.  We all enjoy hearing feed-back on what we have been learning.

Friday, November 18, 2011

Monday, November 14, 2011

Check out the Hands-On homework Tab

Look at the fantastic photos I have been sent of our children taking-on the 'Hands on Homework Challenge' - great work Waitahuna pupils.  Check out the photos at the

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Hands - On Homework

 For the rest of the year we will be posting a 'Hands-on homework' challenge for the students at Waitahuna school. We are hoping to put a new challenge up every week and some of these activities may require help from parents.Please look at the 'Hands-On Homework' tab if you are interested in trying this weeks challenge! Hands-on homework isn't compulsory.

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Book Launch ~ It's OK!

Congratulations to Jo Heslop for the launch of her book "It's OK!' We look forward to hearing of its success and the role it plays in teaching children that it is OK to be different.

 It’s OK ~ Written by Jo Heslop, Illustrated by Annie Roska
One day a little boy named Brody starts at a new school.  Brody has special needs and this story tells how his classmates come to realise that “It’s ok to be different!”

If you would like more details about purchasing the book please contact the email address below.

Click here to print an Order Form

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Check out the 'Our Garden' tab
which has been updated today!

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Waitahuna Goldrush 150th Celebrations

Waitahuna School pupils were centre stage on Saturday as they entertained the huge crowd at Waitahuna Gully. Their fame did not end there as they were invited by Mayor Brian Cadogan to unveil the plaque commemorating 150 years since the discovery of gold in the gully. Well done to all the pupils who made their Teachers and Parents very proud.
Waitahuna School walking down the Gully Road
Charlie, Abby & Danielle
Olly looking very 'dapper'
In fine voice

Unveiling the plaque
Olly and Jack at the Sluice

If you haven't had the opportunity to read todays 'Otago Daily Times'
click on the photo below to go to the article online.

ODT Photo ~ 31st October 2011

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Gardening at Waitahuna

We have an exciting new learning opportunity at Waitahuna School.  If you would like to find out more about it check out the 'tab' above that says 'OUR GARDEN'.

Winners at Waitahuna

We have had our own competition running during the Rugby World Cup.  Miss Goss took it in hand to organise a 'Kicking Competition' to see who could kick over the goal post.  All the pupils were encouraged to enter and then through a process of elimination the kicking skills began to show through.  This week we were proud to award the following prizes.
Waitahuna Rugby World Cup ~ Kicker of the Year 2011 = Jake Lyders
Runner-Up = Olly Bugden
Highly Commended = Bradley Benington, Josh Allen & Jack Murray

During the World Cup we held a competition to see who could guess the Winners of the RWC. Today we were proud to award
Taylor 1st prize for choosing NZ to win, France 2nd and Australia 3rd.
Danielle was 2nd choosing NZ 1st and France 2nd. Well Done
From October 21, 2011

Monday, October 24, 2011

We are the champions

What a fantastic Rugby World Cup!
We are the champions!
Hard work + Practise = Success

Thursday, October 20, 2011

News on the Wind Farm

I am sure all of our followers have read the latest news on the Mt Stuart Wind Farm in the Otago Daily Times today.  If not click on the photo below to go to the article online.

Monday, October 10, 2011

Holiday News

Hi Waitahuna School pupils,
A few changes have taken place on the Blog with the addition of a page for the 'Senior Room Teach and Tell' and also some RWC Acrostic Poems on the Senior Publishing Page.  Please take a look.
I hope you all have a well earned break during your holiday. 

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Visiting Mount Stuart Wind Farm

Yesterday Pioneer Generation invited Waitahuna School up to the Wind Farm at Mt Stuart.  We were joined by some of the 'Friends of our School' and Grandparents who were interested to see what has been happening at the wind farm.  The weather up at the wind farm was really windy and we could see why they were building a wind farm up there.  The staff from Pioneer Generation said it was the windiest day they have had while constructing the wind farm.  We were really surprised at the progress that has been made since our first visit.  One interesting fact that we discovered was that there is only going to be three red 'aircraft warning beacons' shining on the wind farm at night.  One pupil from the Junior Room described these red lights as 'More beautiful than the stars' and then added "and you do know the wind farm produces Renewable Energy!". 
Thanks again to Pioneer Generation for their support.

Monday, September 26, 2011

The Bad Tempered Ladybird

In the Junior Room we shared Eric Carle's book ' The Bad Tempered Ladybird'. 
The bad-tempered ladybird picks fights with every animal he meets, but soon learns the importance of friends and turns into a far nicer, happier bug. The beautifully illustrated pages of this entertaining book demonstrate the sizes of the different animals and the sun's path across the sky as time passes. We used this book in a Math activity and made ladybirds which display our doubles.

Monday, September 19, 2011

Mount Stuart Wind Farm

At Waitahuna School we have  been learning about Wind Energy and the importance of using Renewable Energy.  We have discussed our need for electricity and the different technology we enjoy that needs electricity such as playstation, computers and TV.

The more we learn about Wind Energy and the construction of the Mt Stuart Wind Farm the more questions we seem to have.  Luckily our friends at Pioneer Generation have been very helpful at answering our questions. 
These are our latest questions about the Wind Farm construction kindly answered by the team at Pioneer Generation:

When the tower pieces arrive, are the stairs already in them? The stairs are already in the towers when they arrive in site. 

Where is the light located on the nacelle? The aircraft warning beacons are located at the highest point on the nacelle.
When you put the nacelle up is the gear-box, main-shaft and equipment already in it? When erected the nacelle has the gearbox, generator and main shaft inside.

How are the blades fixed onto the nacelle? The blades are fixed to a hub by bolts and the hub is bolted to the nacelle.
After you use the big red crane, at the end of the day do you lie it down or leave it standing? When the crane is left idle for long periods the boom is lowered but usually when in operation the boom is left up overnight.

How many tonnes can the big red crane lift? … Which is the heaviest part of the wind turbine to lift? The heaviest part of the wind turbine is the nacelle which is 23.3 tonnes.   With a short boom and when the load is very close to the crane it can lift up to 110 tonnes.
Why don’t they have windows in the tower as then they wouldn’t need to use as much electricity to light it? The towers have few holes in them apart from the door.   The reason for this is that any holes in the tower reduce its structural strength so it is more cost effective to put temporary lighting in the tower than windows.
Does the circumference of the tower get smaller as it goes up? The circumference of the tower gets smaller towards the top of the tower.

Friday, September 9, 2011

Rugby World Cup 2011

After a huge count-down the Rugby World Cup has begun!  We look forward to using this great sporting event to support our learning.  The Senior Room has already started with their 'rugby' Reading Topic.  Some of them will even be able to tell you what the first rugby ball was made from... Why don't you ask them!

Click here to see the RWC Match Schedule

Here is a new website for you to explore. It has everything you need to find out about the
Rugby World Cup

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Windy Days in Waitahuna

During the 2nd term our pupils had discussions about the new Wind Farm being built at Mount Stuart. These discussions showed the children’s natural curiosity about what was happening and what role the Wind Farm plays in their lives and our country. The children then wrote letters to Pioneer Generation expressing their interest in the Wind Farm and asking them some interesting questions. A few of them are below.
How many stairs are in the tower?
How long would it take you to walk up the tower?
How big are the motors compared to a car motor?
Won’t the towers act like lightning rods and attract lightning?
Which road will you use to bring the blades? Balclutha Highway or Manuka Gorge?
Does the area behind the blades have a cabin in it?
Pioneer Generation made contact with our school and we were pleased to be invited to visit the site in the last week of term. The children were excited to visit the site and the workers stopped work and made us feel very welcome. All the pupils and supporters were provided with hard hats and fluoro vests which added to the occasion. We were shown the foundations of the 9 turbines and also were told the answers to our questions.

At the start of Term 3 we started our Wind topic which will also see us learning about Renewable Energy. We were very lucky to receive a parcel in the mail from EPI plastics which contained a Weather Vane. This has been mounted high on the tennis court fence and the children have been learning about wind direction. We are very grateful for the generosity of Norman at EPI Plastics and if any families would like to purchase a weathervane they can get one from his website.

At the recent meeting of the Mt Stuart Community Liaison Group, Vicki and I were pleased to be presented with two ‘Wind Turbine Construction Sets’ for the school from Pioneer Generation. These sets will also help support the learning on this topic. Fraser Jonker is also working towards another visit by the school in mid-September when some of the turbines have been erected. We look forward again to involving the Parents, Grandparents and friends of the school in our next visit. If you are interested in being involved please ring the school office and we will contact you closer to the time.

Regards Clare Blackmore and Vicki Johnstone