Junior School

Pandemic Poem by Year 6

2020 started, a year like all the rest,

'Til a virus came upon us, and put us to the test.

By March news from around the world, shook us all with fear,

It was not long 'til we realized, this was not a normal year.

Our teachers gave us lessons, on how to wash our hands,

As disappointed time and again, we cancelled all our plans.

There was talk of toilet paper, vanishing from shelves,

Stockpiling had begun, people kept it for themselves.

Our world was twisted sideways, our life changed overnight,

Yet, acting for the greater good, we did what’s just and right.

Learning packs were handed out, lockdown was started,

From our friends and classmates, sadly we were parted.

Our parents were our teachers, not an easy feat!

We saw our friends and teachers, onscreen on Google Meet.

We walked, we baked, we made it through,

'Til back to school, in level 2.

School was weird, desks moved apart,

Army lines, that’s just the start.

When we were all in lockdown, the danger tape came out,

It wrapped around the lockers, and fluttered all about.

Soap and sanitiser, were slathered on our hands,

Any touch or hugging, had firmly now been banned.

Line up everyone, wash your hands,

We don’t want COVID, on Columba’s land.

No more sitting on the mat, only long desk rows,

We couldn’t even work in groups, this added to our woes!

Spaced apart from everyone, sitting all alone,

And if we even coughed or sniffed, the teachers sent us home.

At times it’s been quite stressful, but sometimes it’s been nice,

At least with social distancing, there hasn’t been head lice.

We enjoyed 2020 fashion, wearing colourful masks,

Seeing patterns and designs, as we went about our tasks.

All the things we looked to, the things we would have done,

Spring Service, PALS, the O’MAthalon, sadly we had none.

Otago Champs Cross Country, it was cancelled too,

We sighed and carried onwards, 'twas all that we could do.

But in this most unusual year, we’re proud of what we’ve shown,

When faced with such adversity, unlike we’ve ever known.

We adapted, we helped, we showed our care,

We even disinfected, all the sports gear!

We made our teachers proud, and they supported us too,

Our creative art made us happy, and helped to get us through.

We worked as a team, we kept a smile on our face,

And we kept up our learning, at a pretty fast pace!

We’re in a time in history, that will be on the shelves,

A tale to tell our grandchildren, that’s greater than ourselves.

A time when we were children, and had to leave our friends,

To keep the community safe, and bring COVID to an end.

When times are hard, we’ve learnt to be strong,

We know we can help, when the world seems wrong.

When we look back in future, we’ll remember this and smile,

We were the Year 6 leavers, that went the extra mile.

From Mrs Hogg

2021 started out just like 2020. In Term One, we managed to get our swimming lessons, takeaway evening, visit from Elgregoe the Magician, Athletic Sports, Parent Interviews, Art Gallery visits, Grandparents morning and Golf lessons completed. Then we found ourselves back in Level 2, and once again our desks and tables were moved into rows.

Our major focus in Term Two was the annual Music Concert. This was an opportunity for the children to share all of their wonderful music skills, including singing, dance, poi, drums, instrumental and band items. The hall was packed with family and friends who very much enjoyed watching the multitude of talent in the Junior School.

A big highlight for Year 5 and 6 was competing in the Jump Jam Live competition at Kaikorai Valley College. The team, watched by a very excited group of family, friends and staff supporters, managed to come away with the win!

Book Week in Term Three is always a wonderful event and this year was no different. The whole school, including staff, dressed up as their favourite book character, and the costumes were amazing.

The Junior School had great success at the Hills Cluster Cross Country. An excited and nervous group of students headed down to Bishops Court to participate in the event. Congratulations to all those who placed in the top ten. The results were impressive. A special mention to the following students who placed in the top three.

Year 4 Boys - 1st Henry Pratley, 3rd Jesse McIlroy

Year 4 Girls - 3rd Matilda Brown

Year 5 Girls – 1st Poppy Hussey, 3rd Frances Jones

Year 6 Girls – 1st Anna Riley

Unfortunately, participation in the Otago Cross Country Championships was unable to go ahead, due to COVID. In addition, the NZSO Concert and the annual Spring Service was also cancelled. A big thank you to our Chaplain, Dr Jennifer McLeod, along with the senior girls, for putting together a lovely Spring video instead.

Also, the New Entrant Mystery Trip, Movie Evening, Swimming Carnival and Carol Service all became casualties of COVID.

Luckily in Term Four, Year 5 and 6 Camp was able to go ahead. The students had a wonderful time at Berwick Lodge, participating in a range of individual and team challenges. A huge thank you to Evan from Adventure Masters, and to all the parents who helped out.

Prize-giving, the final event of the year, was where we farewelled the Year 6 students. The ceremony was able to take place, with only students and staff in attendance. Parents, families and friends were able to watch it via live streaming.

Thank you to all of the teachers, students and parents of the Junior School. We appreciate having such a caring and supportive family and look forward to a more settled 2022.