Friday, The Fifth – What Fun We Had!

Bonjour tout le monde,
We had a pretty exciting day today in 3/4L. This morning I explained to the class the mystery of the Tin Whistles. I ordered them through Allans Billy Hyde and apparently the order got lost! After chasing it up a few times and waiting 5 weeks, I was told yesterday that they were being send immediately from Sydney. I did tell the person I ordered from that I would have been quicker asking my mother to buy them in Ireland and having her send them over!! A short time before recess today, the long awaited phone call from the office came to say ‘the Tin Whistles had arrived’. Here they are!!!!!
Before we got to our first Tin Whistle lesson, we had Kath Murdoch teach an Inquiry lesson in 3/4L. Kath is an Educational Consultant who works with the teachers at St Bede’s. We were very lucky to have her model a lesson with 3/4L and the students thoroughly enjoyed it. Here are a few photos from the session which was based on Wetlands, the living and non-living things which are found in Wetlands and the connections they have. There was also a strong emphasis on collaboration. I encourage you to discuss the lesson further with your child. Notice the assimilation of a wetland which Kath and the students created towards the end of the lesson. The string represented the “web” or “chain” as the students described it which binds all the living and non-living things (the students) in the Wetland.
After lunch we had the talented Gemma Kim play the piano for us as part of her VIP for this week. We really enjoyed listening to her play and there were even shouts for an encore! Here’s Gemma’s wonderful performance:

Then we were ready for the first Tin Whistle lesson of the year! The children were incredibly excited and probably a little shocked at the noise in the room when we got started! We focussed on learning the notes B, A and G today as these are the easiest notes but students have the diagram for how to play all the notes if they want to try them all.
We had a crash course in stick notation and rhythm names: Ta, Ti-Ti and Sa. This will of course be developed further as we learn various tunes and songs. Then it was on to learning ‘Hot Cross Buns’!
This week I mainly want students to focus on producing a good sound which is achieved by covering the holes on the Tin Whistle properly and not blowing too hard! Students should always play with their left hand on top and right hand on the bottom. The right hand should always be in position (right thumb behind third hole from the bottom), even when not using it to produce notes. I have given the students a couple of extra pieces (Mary Had a Little Lamb and Twinkle Twinkle) which they can have a go at playing but there’s no expectation to learn them before next week.
Please encourage your child to practise for a minimum of 10 minutes each evening so s/he learns how to hold the Tin Whistle confidently and play the notes properly. By next Friday, I would like all students to be able to play ‘Hot Cross Buns’.
I insist at school that there is no need to produce a really loud, high pitched, squeaky sound if students are being sensible and trying to play properly. I’m sure some of you at least will have fun managing that at home!!!
Tin Whistle lessons will be every Friday for the remainder of the year. The children must have their Tin Whistle and their music with them, otherwise they will have to sit and listen to everyone else having all the fun! If you have any questions, please feel free to email me.
I intended taking lots of photos but in the busyness of helping students to hold the Tin Whistle properly, cover the holes, find the notes, play the correct rhythm, I totally forgot. I did manage to get one though!

St Patrick’s Day – Lá Fhéile Pádraig

St Patrick’s Day is on March 17th.  It honours St Patrick, the Patron Saint of Ireland, who died on this date about 461 A.D.  Patrick was born in Wales but was captured by Irish raiders when he was about 16 years old.  He was taken to Ireland, where he spent the next 4 years working as a slave minding sheep on the side of a mountain.  He became very religious during this time and after 6 years, he heard God’s voice telling him it was time to leave Ireland.  He went back home and spent years studying to become a priest.  He then had a vision from God telling him to go back to Ireland and preach about Christianity to the Irish.  At this time in Ireland, most people didn’t have a religion and so Patrick told them about God.  He spent the next 30 years spreading the Christian faith and building churches all around Ireland.  It is said he used the shamrock to explain the concept of the holy trinity to the Irish. Showing people the three leafed clover he explained that God the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit were three parts of the same divinity.  Many people believe this is how shamrocks came to be identified with St Patrick as well as Ireland, becoming its national symbol.


Saint Patrick and the Snakes:

St Patrick is said to have driven the snakes Saint Patrick out of Ireland.


Different versions of the story, tell of him standing upon a hill, using a wooden staff to drive the serpents into the sea, banishing them forever from Ireland.

One version says that an old serpent resisted banishment, but Patrick tricked him. Patrick made a box and invited the snake to enter. The snake insisted it was too small and the two argued. Finally to prove his point, the snake entered the box to show how tight the fit was. Patrick slammed the lid closed and threw the box into the sea.


Singing ShamrockShamrocks, Leprachan and ShamrockLeprechauns, Irish JigIrish jigs, the Irish harp,   the Irish flag, and pots of gold  Pot of Goldat the end of the rainbow  are all symbols of Ireland and its national day.


A Google Gift for Our Magnificent Mums!

In 3/4LB we have made a Google Slidedeck for our magnificent mums for Mother’s day! We have worked hard to deliver this special gift to our mums! Each one of us made a slide on which we put a picture and a message. We also created image chefs with words describing our mothers. We hope you have a super special day because you are our super special mums. Please leave us a comment!