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Riversdale School Newsletter Term 3 Week 7

Tena Koutou Parents, Caregivers and Whanau.

Hello everyone,

Kia ora e hoa mä.

Tennis mania has hit the School

Tennis mania has hit, as the two tennis nets have gone up. All children can put their names on the ladder, and are keenly playing challenges for places on the ladder at the moment. Early next term we send our top Year 5 and 6 and Year 7 and 8 boys and girls off to the Northern Tennis tournament, and we usually have children qualify from there to play the next round, which is at Southland level. It is wonderful to see so many children playing tennis, and from a young age, as this develops their skills.

Our senior boys are enjoying the games of cricket they are organising on the back field, so summer is definitely in the air. Their skills are amazing with bowling, batting and fielding. Some budding Black Caps are continuing to develop their expertise at this sport.

This coming Black Friday (13th September) we have our school disco in the hall, starting at 6.30pm. We are very, very appreciative to our Disco DJ Rob, who supplies his professional sound system and lighting. Thanks Vanessa for your support with this as well. Children will be able to purchase drinks, sweets, chips, and glow sticks at the disco. Entry is free, as Rob kindly donates his time and expertise. Parents can collect children from 7.45pm on with last pick up at 8pm please. Children are ready to go home by this time as it is a full-on hour and a half of dancing!

I was reading in the Southland Times earlier this week that two of the key things for our positive well-being are showing gratitude and mindfulness (breathing). This heartened me, as you would see at the top of every newsletter we are focussing on gratitude for the year, and we all do our daily Pause, Breathe, Smile practice after lunch. You may have also see on the front page of yesterday’s newspaper the write up about the Chat bus. We are really hopeful of getting this ‘off the ground’ in Gore in the near future, and having the trained counsellor come to Riversdale School for one day a week.

Measles Outbreak

Riversdale School has been advised that since 22nd August, five people have been confirmed with measles in the Southern region and the disease is now likely to be spreading in the wider community. The number of cases may seem relatively small in comparison with the population, but one person with measles can infect many others.

PHS advises that immunisation is the best protection against measles.

Immunisation is safe, effective and free.

Measles is serious and highly infectious viral disease that causes fever, cough, sore red eyes and a rash. It can make people very sick. People with measles can be infectious even before they start feeling unwell. While almost all people will make a complete recovery, it can lead to hospitalisation and in rare cases, death.

Parents/guardians need to find out whether their children are protected against measles.

Regarding your child’s immunisation status:

  • If your child has not received their measles immunisation (MMR vaccine) as per the Immunisation Schedule (1st MMR at 15 months and 2nd MMR at four years), call your GP as soon as possible. Arrange a time to immunise your child as it is never too late.

  • Infants and children who are not travelling to Auckland or overseas to a country with a measles outbreak are recommended to get their MMR vaccinations as per the Immunisation Schedule at 15 months and 4 years.

  • Infants aged 6 to 11 months who are travelling to Auckland or overseas to a country with a measles outbreak, can have their first MMR vaccination (MMR0) after consulting with their GP, however they will still need to have the MMR vaccinations at 15 months and four years as per the Immunisation Schedule.

  • Infants aged 12 to 14 months who are travelling to Auckland or overseas to a country with a measles outbreak, should receive all four 15 month vaccinations (MMR, varicella, Hib and PCV10) at least two weeks before travelling to allow immunity against measles to develop.

If your child has received only one measles immunisation (i.e. one MMR vaccination), call your

GP as soon as possible to see if you need to arrange a time to immunise your child with their

second MMR. Two measles immunisations provide better protection than one.

If your child has received two measles immunisations, or they have definitely had doctor-diagnosed measles infection in the past, they are considered protected. Over 99% of people who are fully immunised are protected from measles.

If you are not sure of your child’s immunisation records, look in your child’s Plunket book or check with your GP.

If your child is not immune or you choose not to immunise your child, they are not protected from measles. If they come into contact with someone with measles, they will likely have to be excluded from school or ECEC for up to 14 days.

Signs of measles

It usually takes 10 to 14 days for someone who has caught measles to start showing symptoms.

If your child develops a high fever, runny nose, cough, sore red eyes, or a rash see a doctor (call ahead to alert your doctor about the possibility of measles before visiting).

If your child has a weakened immune system (e.g. if they have an inherited immune problem or are receiving chemotherapy for cancer), please contact your doctor to discuss further.

If this occurs: Call your GP or Healthline (0800 611 116) as soon as possible for advice. Your GP will advise the safest time for your child to return to school. If your GP suspects measles, they will arrange for testing and Public Health South will be in contact to offer support and any follow up regarding contact tracing.

For more information about measles, contact Healthline on 0800 611 116 or visit

Measles Information for Parents

What are the symptoms?

The signs of measles are a cough, high fever, runny nose and sore red eyes. A few days later, a rash begins on the head and spreads across the body.

How do I know if I’m immune to measles?

To know that you are 99% immune to measles one or more of the following should apply to you:

  1. You have had two measles vaccines (MMR). You need to check your vaccination records in your Well Child (Plunket book) or your family doctor may have records. Please show your principal your vaccination record.

  2. OR you have been diagnosed with measles in the past, or have a blood test proving measles immunity.

  3. OR you were born before 1969 as you are likely to have had measles as a child.

  4. You are almost certainly protected from measles if one of the above applies and will not need to be isolated if you come into contact with someone with measles.

I’ve only had one MMR – do I have to get another vaccination?

To ensure you are 99% protected against measles, it is important to have a second MMR as this vaccine also protects against mumps and rubella. Whilst one MMR does offer 95% of people immunity, it still provides gaps in our community coverage against measles, which puts vulnerable people like new born babies and people with compromised immune systems (e.g. having cancer treatment) at high risk.

Why do I (or my child) have to stay at home in isolation?

If you are developing measles, staying home stops it spreading to others and making them unwell.

What does isolation mean?

It means staying home away from others. Do not go to work, school, group or social activities, sports, or public places like movie theatres, shopping malls, supermarkets and other food markets.

Do not use public transport or visit friends or family. Avoid being in the same room as people who are not immune to measles.

What if I or my child feel worse or have symptoms, and need to go to a doctor again?

If you need to see a doctor, phone the medical centre or after-hours clinic before going there and tell them you (or your child) may have measles. When you arrive, you must be isolated and not sit in the waiting room.

My child hasn’t been in the same classroom as a measles case. Are they still at risk?

If your child has been in the same class, room or space as the person with measles while they were infectious, then your child will have been exposed. If your child is not in the same class, even though they may have been in the same classroom afterwards or in the same hall or playground, the risk is much lower. The school is not asking you to keep your child at home, but do watch for symptoms, particularly if they are not vaccinated. We also ask you to check that they are vaccinated.

I don’t have any proof that I have been vaccinated– what do I do?

If you have been exposed to measles but are younger than 50 years, and if your doctor cannot confirm you have been vaccinated or had measles, you will need to stay home for the isolation period. Please get vaccinated when you are out of isolation.

If my child has been exposed to measles, do I have to tell others?

You do not need to tell anyone else that your child may be developing measles and is in isolation, unless your child is confirmed as having the virus. Only then will you need to inform the school, and then any family and social contacts.

I’m pregnant or have a weak immune system – am I at risk?

Pregnant women who haven’t been vaccinated, and anyone with a weakened immune system, are at greater risk of measles complications. They or their caregiver should ask their doctor or lead maternity carer for advice.

Coming Up This Term….

Monday 9 September - Auditions for School Production lead roles.

Friday 13 September - School Disco in the Hall, 6.30pm until 8.00pm.

Friday 13 September - Children advised of Production parts.

Monday 23 September - Board of Trustees Meeting 7.30pm.

Thursday 26 September - Cultural Evening in the school hall, 6.30 start.

Friday 27 September - Last day of Term 3.

Monday14 October - First Day of Term 4.

Monday 28 October - Labour Day, School closed.

Cultural Evening

On Thursday 26 September we are planning to show you the learning that has occurred over the past five weeks around Culture and Heritage. This will replace our usual end of term school assembly. We would like to show this, and end with shared kai (food) in the form of supper. We are hoping that whanau (families) belonging to our community can bring something small along for supper which reflects their culture. The timetable for the evening is:

6.30pm Children sharing their learning in classrooms. Parents and whanau visit classrooms and look at this.

6.50pm We move to the Hall where children are performing items.

7.30pm Shared kai (supper).

8.00pm Off home after an enjoyable community evening.


WANTED - Parent Help 8.45am – 9.00am

If you have a spare 15 minutes in the morning, and would like to help out, please see your child’s teacher, or Mrs Stevens. We’d love some parents to hear children read, practise basic facts, spelling words or sight words, or work on number knowledge.

St John

St Johns provides a valuable service for our community. We currently have six first responder volunteers who maintain this service 24/7.

We are looking for volunteers! We need you!

If you are interested in learning more about this role please contact Dave Hurley on 027 4357238.


Once again these nasty critters are at school so, could you please check your child/ren’s hair. It is recommended that hair be checked each day, as eggs can hatch in that time. If you want information on how to treat them, contact the School office.

Counting Cards

Counting Cards


· Add on from a starting number other than zero.

· Mentally add a series of numbers using an efficient strategy.

· Use language associated with addition: join, and, add, sum.

Materials - deck of cards (picture cards removed).

Aim - to add numbers to a specific total.

Organization – a game for pairs or small groups.


· Prior to starting the game, a target number should be chosen e.g. fifteen.

· Each play is dealt five cards.

· Four cards are dealt face up and the remaining deck placed in the middle.

· Players take turns to place one of their cards on one of the four cards that is face up and add the values to try to reach the target number. Depending on the size of the target number, players may place more than one card on a single pile. Cards may only be laid down if the exact total can be produced. A player’s turn is over after he or she produces the target number or chooses a card from the deck.

· Players choose a card from the deck if they cannot lay down a card or cards.

· Players reaching the target get to keep the cards in a separate pile. The values of these cards are added at the end of the game to determine a winner.

· Once a pile is removed a card is turned over from the deck to replace it.


· Change the target number.

· Set a target to be reached by multiplication rather than addition.


We are on the lookout for children aged 8 to 11 years old to play softball in the Invercargill area.

Girls and boys welcome!

We will practise once a week in Gore and play in Invercargill on Saturday mornings.

We would LOVE to have you join us. For more information, please contact Damon Topi on

027 8683365. The season will run from the end of September until early 2020.



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