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Wednesday 30 January, 2013 Dear Parents and Caregivers, Welcome to Balmacewen Intermediate.

The purpose of this letter is to introduce myself and inform you of a few house-keeping matters that you may find useful. Hi, my name is Rachel Smart and as you will know your child is in Room 1 this year. While I have been teaching for a number of years now, I only started here at Balmacewen at the beginning 2012. After teaching in Wellington for 6 years and having a baby boy, I moved back home to Dunedin in order to be closer to my family. Its great to be back and I thoroughly my first year back here last year. I am a keen sportsperson and feel it is important to develop a collaborative environment where we work together as a team. It is important that the students feel safe to take risks and learn from their mistakes. I am really looking forward to getting to know all of the students in my class, and the unique personal qualities that they bring to our room. I really hope your child enjoys their time with us and takes advantage of the many opportunities our school offers. We will begin the year with a few school wide assessments, which will give me an indication of what level your child is at, so that our programmes can be designed to meet their needs. MEET THE TEACHER Week 2 Thursday 7th February from 7.00pm. This is an opportunity for us to meet informally and for you to receive information about school/class systems and expectations. HOMEWORK - Homework in our class is generally issued on a Monday and due in on a Friday. Students are expected to spend approximately 30 minutes on their homework each night, however this system allows for flexibility if students have other after school commitments. Daily homework reminders will be recorded in a Homework Notebook which I have provided, to help establish routines. Please feel free to check this, particularly on a Monday so you can see what is expected for the week. Next week a homework contract sheet will come home in your childs homework book which explains the homework system and expectations in Room 1. Please read and sign this ASAP. P.E. GEAR - PE gear, which includes sports shoes and a change of socks, should be at school for use everyday. If for some reason PE gear cannot be brought to school, a change of clothes and a note of explanation will be required. It is recommended (particularly during the summer terms) that your child also brings a suitable hat/cap. Students are expected to take part in all activities to the best of their ability. EOTC All classes will be taking part in a swimming programme through Swimsation at Moana Pool in the next few weeks. We will also be participating in a Kiwi Golf session with Melanie Harper here at school. Information will be provided in the next few days with further information on dates, times and costs for these events. All Year 7 classes go to camp in Term 1. Our class, along with Room 3 (Mrs Garthwaite), will be going in week 7 (11 March -13 March). A letter with details/costs/gear requirements for this will be provided ASAP. We will also have a day trip to the Early Settlers Museum later in the term to help with our Inquiry work around Identity and Early Dunedin. As many of you realise, we are unable to run these sorts of programmes without the assistance of parents. Forms will come home for all trips and we would really appreciate it if you are able to help out. EQUIPMENT/UNIFORMS - Please ensure that all stationery and uniforms (including PE gear) are clearly labelled. It is much easier to return misplaced items if they are named. If things are used up or lost, please ensure that they are replaced as soon as possible. I look forward to a successful and enjoyable year and to meeting many of you at the Meet the Teacher evening next week. Please feel free to contact me at any time if you have any queries or concerns. I can either be contacted through the school office or on the email address below, and will endeavour to get back to you ASAP. Kind Regards Rachel Smart rsmart@balmacewen.school.nz