St Ita's Primary School Drouin
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50 Victoria Street
Drouin VIC 3818

Phone: 03 5623 7222

T3 W4 2021 Newsletter

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T3 W4 2021 Newsletter


St Ita’s Catholic Primary School acknowledges and pays respect to the past, present and future Traditional Custodians and Elders of this nation and the continuation of cultural, spiritual and educational practices of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples. 





    We are excited to be teaching your little learner with our engaging literacy program this year.  This letter is to tell you more about our decodable books, which support children as they develop as young readers.

    What are decodable books?

    There are generally two types of levelled books given to beginner readers – decodable (books which require children to read words by sounding out, using the letters and sounds that they have been taught) and predictable (repetitive text which encourages children to look at the picture, use their knowledge of high frequency words and other strategies to guess the text). Our books are decodable books. They are carefully written to match the Little Learners Love Literacy® sequence. Children experience success from the start by sounding out and blending the words in the books using the sounds and letters they’ve learnt so far.

    Little Learners Love Literacy® Stages

    The Little Learners program is carefully sequenced in seven stages to teach children the 44 sounds of the English language and the principles of the alphabetic code (that each speech sound can be represented by different groups of letters, such as the sound /ī/ as in I, sky, pie, ice, cycle, and that a letter (or group of letters) can represent different sounds, such as the letter ‘y’ in yes, gym, funny, sky). There are five Pip and Tim books for every stage in the Little Learners Love Literacy® program, to provide opportunities for your child to apply the letter–sound correspondences taught at each stage in the classroom.

    Why do we use Little Learners decodable books?

    The Little Learners decodable books (Pip and Tim series and The Wiz Kids series) contain funny stories and quirky illustrations to grab children’s attention.  Children love to follow the familiar characters on new adventures through the stages of the Little Learners program.  The Little Learners decodable books are delightful stories that children can read using their phonics knowledge: the letters and sounds that they have been explicitly taught using the Little Learners Love Literacy® sequence, plus a few Heart words.

    What are heart words?

    Heart words are introduced at each stage of our sequence. Heart words are words that children need to ‘learn by heart’, as they cannot decode them yet.  Heart words such as ‘the’ and ‘said’ are needed to create a sentence and a story.  Many heart words will become decodable later in the program when children have learnt more of the alphabetic code.  Each book includes a ‘How to enjoy this book’ section, where you can find Heart words, speed sounds, a vocabulary check, as well as some comprehension questions and ideas for discussion.

    Top tips for reading at home
    • Before your child starts reading each book, go to the back two pages. Encourage your child to point at the graphemes (letters) and say the sounds, then ask them to read the Heart words.
    • Encourage your child to sound out to read unknown words when they get stuck.
    • Make sure you child tracks their finger underneath the words as they read them
    • Remember that this is the beginning of your child’s learning to read journey and, just as when they were learning to walk, your child will need support to build confidence.

    If you would like to find out more about the program, you can visit the website or visit our YouTube channel. You can also ask your child’s teacher for more information.



    We are excited to be helping your little one with our fun, engaging and evidence-based literacy program this year.

    What can you expect?

    We teach with Little Learners Love Literacy® – a structured and explicit program with engaging multisensory activities. It is carefully sequenced in seven stages to teach children the 44 sounds of the English language and the principles of the alphabetic code (that each speech sound can be represented by different groups of letters, such as the sound /ī/ as in I, sky, pie, ice, cycle, and that a letter (or group of letters) can represent different sounds, such as the letter ‘y’ in yes, gym, funny, sky.

    Did you know that learning the alphabetic code gives children the knowledge to read and spell 84% of ALL words? (Hanna, Hanna, Hodges, and Rudorf, 1966)

    We start with teaching the simple code in Stages 1–4. We will focus on phonics and phonemic awareness to build the strongest foundations for reading and spelling success. We will also focus on building vocabulary and oral language skills to develop equally strong foundations for comprehension and writing.

    Meet Milo and friends

    In the first few weeks of term, we will be learning our Stage 1 letters and sounds. We will be enjoying the Milo’s Birthday Surprise storybook, meeting a new character and sound regularly. We will also learn to blend sounds to say words with the Ally alligator puppet and segment them for spelling, as well as learning handwriting.

    Decodable books

    Once we finish teaching Stage 1 at the end of Term 1, we will start to send home Pip and Tim decodable books.  These are our secret to success – our ‘no tricks’ books. Each story practises the sounds and letters that we have taught, so children will be able to read the books themselves by sounding out and blending (and no guessing!).

    How can you support you child at home?

    Reading to your child Read many books to your child and talk about what you just read. This is crucial for vocabulary and linguistic comprehension.  Choosing a quiet time, such as bedtime, can help build an easy and fun reading routine.

    Play with sounds

    Read the Little Learners letter that we will send home each week. Ask your child the questions that are included with the letter. This will support the development of phonemic awareness (helping in the ability to identify, blend, segment and manipulate speech sounds within words).

    Say the sounds

    Say the ‘pure’ sounds without an ‘uh’ sound on the end; for example, ‘lllll’ rather than ‘luh’. You can listen to the sounds on the Little Learners Love Literacy® YouTube channel.

    Practise decoding

    When our decodable storybooks start to come home later in the term, encourage your child to sound out to read unknown words. Remember that this is the beginning of your child’s learning to read journey and, just as when they were learning to walk, your child will need support to build confidence reading.




    We have had reports of students in our school being diagnosed with hand, foot & mouth disease.

    Hand, foot and mouth disease (HFMD) is caused by a virus. It causes blisters on the hands and feet, in the mouth and often in the ‘nappy’ area. It is generally only a mild disease that lasts seven to ten days.

    HFMD occurs mainly in children under ten years of age, but can also affect older children and adults. This infection is spread by direct contact with fluid from the skin blisters, nose and throat discharges (including saliva, sputum or nasal mucus), droplets (sneezing, coughing) and faeces (stools). Good personal hygiene is important to prevent spread of the infection to others.

    The skin blisters of HFMD are infectious until they become crusty and there is no fluid in the blisters. Diagnosis is made by a local doctor, and there is no specific treatment.

    Children with HFMD should be excluded from school and childcare centres until all of the blisters have dried. To assist in prevention of spread, parents should report the illness to the director of the childcare centre or school principal.



    On Monday 9th August the Foundation and Grade 1 students will compete in a mini-olympic activity morning to celebrate the 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games. The activities will be a range of small relays and mini challenges supported by some grade 6 buddies. There will be small prizes given out for children showing persistence, encouragement or displaying 'olympic' sportsmanship. 

    Thanks Mr Pitt & Mrs Lewry


    It is with great disappointment that we have now postponed the school concert to 10th November 2021.  There will be a rehersal at the Warragul Arts Centre on the 9th November 2021. With the current restriction in place we would not be able to offer all families a chance to attend.  We will have more information later this term or early next term on how families can purchase tickets. 



    Earlier this year, our Foundation Unit, received a Grant from the Drouin and District Community Bank for our Sensory Equipment Plan.  We received $1,869.22 from this grant, which we have used to purchase a range of different sensory equipment to help our current and future Foundation students access their learning.  As we strive to continue improving our inclusive learning community, it is essential that we have access to good quality sensory equipment.  As such, we have used this Grant to purchase the following equipment:

    • Weighted lap pads: to assist students in sitting on the floor.
    • Wobble Stools: to allow students to move while sitting at their table.
    • Specialised scissors: to assist students still developing fine motor skills with their cutting.
    • Visual Timers: to allow students to see time remaining in an activity.
    • Updated Wobble Cushions: to assist students who need to move with sitting in one place on the floor.
    • Tweezers: to assist with the development of fine motor skills.

    We sincerely thank the Drouin and District Community Bank for their support and encouragement of our plan and we look forward to sharing our successes with this equipment with the whole community in the coming years.



    All visits to the sickbay will be recorded on our Parent Access Module under Sick Passes.
    This gives parents an indication of when and why students have attended the sickbay.  Accidents and soiling of school uniforms does happen from time to time and we will make these notes on the sick pass history as well.  Please wash and return spare uniforms to school for future use.  As more and more students have requested lunches we will also include this as one of the reasons students have attended sickbay/office to give parents an indication of when their child has requested a sandwich. 


    Term 1 & 2 School Fees are now overdue & Term 3 School Fees are due by Friday 6th August. BPay details are available on your school fee statement. School fees are due by the 4th week of each term and must be paid in full by the end of the school year they are due, December 2021.

    If any families would like to pay off their fees either weekly, fortnightly or monthly, please set up a direct debit schedule by completing a Direct Debit Form and returning to the school office at your earliest convenience.  Please calculate the total fees payable by the number of weeks/payments required for your fees to be paid by December 2021. For any assistance please contact the school Admin office via email on:

    For any families that have recently received a Government means-tested Health Care Concession Card and have not already advised the school office, please forward a copy of your card to the office to check your eligibility, as a fee concession may apply. The card must be in the name of the parent/fee payer for a fee concession to apply with the student details listed on the card.  A CSEF (Camp, Sport & Excursion Fund) form must also be completed. Application forms must be completed each year.

    If your current Health Care Concession Card has expired, or is due to expire and your card is re-issued or any details have changed, please send a copy of your new card details to the office as soon as possible for the concession to be checked and applied to your fees. 


    We have had very good feedback with the access of school reports through the new parent portal. Please contact the school if you still have not been able to do this or please follow the instructions on the school website. This portal is accessible via

    If parents can please continue updating the medical information through this portal that will be great. 


    Enrolments are now open and we are now taking bookings for enrolment interviews and school tours. (COVID-19 Dependent).

    If you require an interview and school tour with your child, please contact our school Admin on 5623 7222 as soon as possible to book a time.

    All parents will be required to complete a student questionnaire prior to the commencement of your interview (this takes a couple of minutes and you will receive it on arrival). You will also receive an enrolment pack with an enrolment form enclosed.

    We strongly advise you to book your interview and return your application form promptly to guarantee enrolment for next year.


    School buses will not be operating in the Drouin network on the following days in Term 3. All bus travellers will need to make alternative arrangements to/from school on these days.

    Term 3 - Monday 16th August 2021

    Term 3 - Wednesday 25th August 2021




    Two students from St Ita's Primary School have won a prizes in the Alex Scott & Staff Colouring Competition.

    William Veale, Aged 6 - won 2nd Prize with the below entry


    Oliver Robinson aged 9 - won 3rd Prize with the below entry





    Over 10,000 recognised saints have honoured God and inspired Christians in our 2000 year history, many of them women. And of course there are countless others known only to God. Illustrious female saints include St Teresa of Avila, and St Therese of Lisieux and the great saint of living memory, St Mother Teresa of Calcutta. But Australians particularly are inspired and in awe of one of our own: St Mary of the Cross MacKillop, whose feast day on August 8th takes precedence over the regular Sunday Mass.

    Born in Fitzroy and baptised at St Francis church in the city, she is as Aussie as one can be. In the face of antagonism and opposition, she rolled her sleeves up and focussed on what was really important. A sister of her order, sums up Mary’s spirituality thus:

    God’s Spirit wove the threads of her circumstances into a spiritual fabric resilient enough for her tumultuous times and ours. It is spirituality tough and tender, simple and practical, grounded and mystical. It led Mary to seek and serve God at the margins of Australian society, where poor people struggled in the remote outback and sordid slums of the rapidly growing cities.1 [Joan Healy rsj,  – Mary, a Pioneer of Passionate Australian Spirituality, 2010]

    Grounded, immersed with sleeves rolled up in the community, Mary MacKillop was a strong woman with a sense of humour who had her own share of heartbreak and was prepared to meet people of all flavours where they were at. On horseback, carriage, train and by ship she travelled widely across Australia and the world enlisting and befriending people of all faiths and none. Her focus was constantly on bringing Jesus’ compassion to the poor, marginalised and disenfranchised.

    No better standard bearer can be found for strong women rising up and making their voices heard in modern Australian workplaces, homes, churches and society than Mary MacKillop.

    Deacon Mark Kelly




    Our first workshop will be held this Wednesday, August 4th in St Ita’s School Hall commencing at 7pm. Also on Thursday, August 5th in St Joseph’s Church at 4pm or 7pm.

    Please bring along your completed preferred Confirmation Mass form for the Sacrament of Confirmation and your choice of Confirmation name and sponsor’s name form. 

    Workshop 2 will be on the following week the 11th and 12th of August at the same venues and times.


    There will be Commitment Masses this coming weekend, please make sure you book for Mass on Try Book on the following link before 3pm this Friday August 6th as this site is closed for Mass booking after this time:    You should already have received this link via email or your school.

    Please remember to bring your Commitment Enrolment form to one of these Masses.

    For all enquiries please contact Therese on: 0499 116 428



    Check out our Catholic Parishes of Warragul & Drouin Facebook presence.