Let's Hear it From Year 6
Dear Year 6 families,
This term in Year 6 has been all about learning through doing. During our current unit of inquiry, we have focused on the concept of ‘perspective’ and trying to understand what compels someone to migrate and begin a new life in a new land. We have endeavoured to put ourselves in the shoes of another, to try to learn what life would be like for someone who had to or chose to leave their birthplace. Our writing leans into the idea of telling a story from a particular perspective.
In Mathematics, through our Minimbah Maths Talent Quest, we are discovering that maths is everywhere! There are mathematical elements to all our interests and the students are abuzz with finding maths, testing their hypotheses, and thinking creatively about how to present their findings. The connection with real-life experiences underpins much of how we learn.
The students have had many new experiences this term. Each of them has been challenged to try a new skill or pushed to extend themselves and cement or explain what they know. We asked the students to reflect on how they have developed skills or understandings through their experiences. Their voices can be heard below.
We excitedly look forward to next week and bringing The Little Mermaid to life on stage. What an amazing, team-bonding, confidence-building, and tremendously fun experience it is going to be! See you there!
The production has been a new thing in my life.
I have never done any type of production. At my old school the closest thing to any production was a show we did every two years where every year level did some type of dance, and it never had any storyline. Worst of all the students had no say in what changes we wanted for the dance as it was all organised by the music teacher.
But at Minimbah everything is more open-minded, and we all get a say. There is a story that we play, and we get our own character. There is so much work put in and everybody works as a team. There are people helping to work on the props and you get to design your very own scarf to decorate. I am so happy to be a part of this production even if there is a lot to remember. I'm so grateful for all the people in it.
I have found out that I am good at using the sewing machine and sewing when I was making my sailor scarf and making props.
Being part of the production, I learned that being ready to help everyone get their props on and off is important. Learning to keep track of all the scenes, even if they weren’t mine, was good because I didn’t have to worry about mistakes. I’ve learnt that everything that you think will be easy, doesn’t always turn out to be easy. But, if you work with your team, you can accomplish anything.
Something that I've learned a lot from is the production. I've got four costumes to put on so that means I have to multitask and be organised. I also have some props, so I need to stay on top of those and not lose them. The production is really soon so I have to work really hard. When we still had a couple of weeks for the production you had to bring your book every day and if you didn't you would be frowned upon by all the teachers working with you.
While I was making the trident, I learned how to use a jigsaw. I went through quite a bit of wood and learned not to rush things and not to push through things and just take it slow.
I have learned from my experience to stand up and sing in front of the grade. I feel more confident to sing and act in front of people. The production has helped me. I can express myself by acting and singing. I am proud of how I have been doing.
When I was making my sailor scarf it was my first time using a sewing machine, it was really cool using the machine for the first time. After I had sewn the fabric together, I added my own little patches to it to make it look different. When I was making my steering wheel for the boat, I got to connect it to the stand so it could spin. I drilled a hole in the stand and put a nut, bolt and steering wheel on so it could spin.
This term a lot of my learning time has been spent working on the production. I learned a lot of new skills including improving my acting skills, memory, accents, body language, facial expression, dancing, and singing skills. The production needs everyone to put in effort and determination. It is one of the best things we have done this year. The skill I have developed the most during production is my body language and facial expressions because that helps you to really become your character. The way I did it was by looking at the script and thinking of the actions I need to express what’s happening. Now I can read people’s emotions better. Another skill was getting into the flow of things more easily. That will help my schoolwork become better because I’m more focused.
Before the production, I wasn't confident enough to speak in front of people, but through the production, and reading lines out loud in front of the whole class, I feel like I have gotten a bit better with public speaking. Another thing I learned is how to use a sewing machine! I was quite bad with sewing and anything to do with sewing before we made the scarves, and now I like to think I'm close to being a pro! (Or at least somewhat good at it 😂) I have also gotten a bit better at dancing. With all the rehearsals, I have gotten so many more ideas for dance moves!!
I learned that sitting around waiting for something to happen gets you nowhere. I learned to act and dance in The Little Mermaid.
This term has been packed with production, and when I think about experiential learning, that is exactly what I think of. One of the biggest things I have learnt in the process of production and rehearsal is how to respectfully watch your classmates and wait for your own turn whilst being quiet. I've also learned little tips and tricks to keep calm and be mindful if you are ever feeling stressed or scared during the production process, like deep breathing and meditation.
I've also been open-minded during the singing part of my role which was something I thought that I could never do. By being persistent and taking risks I'm slowly getting better.
This term I have experienced experiential learning in the form of my production work. When this term began, I knew that my roles would require powerful dialogue in the style of my characters, convincing acting, knowing my lines off by heart, and feeling like I am becoming my characters. Now, 6 weeks later, I feel I have nearly accomplished everything I need to for this production to be awesome.
This term I have experienced experiential learning through making props with Mr Crouch and designing sets. I painted a swan ice sculpture. This has helped a lot. I feel more independent. I feel like I have helped with the actual sets rather than just singing and doing dialogue.
This term I started a Maths Talent Quest and began to explore all the steps I would need to take to create a profitable children’s maths drawing and colouring book. I am investigating every question I have about this process and diving into deep pools of curiosity. I have also been working on writing a historical fiction narrative from the perspective of an immigrant to bring different emotions to people. In production, I have been very patient with the people I have worked with and not given them the reaction they were looking for because that would just make the situation worse.
Something I have learned while doing The Little Mermaid has been props and costumes.
I have enjoyed putting together ideas to create the production and using lots of hands-on learning like sewing, woodwork and lots of other skills that will help me in future places.
I think during this term I have learned more than in any other term, and I hope to have more experience with things like this.
This term I have learnt to sing in front of people, and it has made me more confident. Now I am confident to sing into a microphone. While singing I have been a risk-taker because I have put myself out there; if I make a mistake, that’s ok. I have learnt to always listen to the music for your timing for when to sing. I have given myself an opportunity to show my skills.
Production is one of the best school experiences. It has helped me learn dialogue, songs and to sing confidently by myself in front of people. The auditions required me to sing in front of the teachers, so if I wanted a good part, I’d have to face my fear. I auditioned for most parts, so I was able to practice and get better at singing in front of people. Now I have a great role as a Mersister in the production. I’m with 5 other girls and some of them were in the same boat as me, so we helped each other get better at singing in front of people.
Learning about something new!
I learned something new with production. I’ve never done an actual play with a story and costumes, so it's been a new experience for me. I now can engage more and get into the character, which is really fun!
I’ve never been to a school that does a full story production, so it’s amazing, I feel more connected to people because we are all in the play and we all have to work together to make a show. I like my role too which is an eel. I like how the teachers don't push you too far out of the acting comfort zone, since I get stage fright, I’m glad I on have a small role but I must make the most of it.
Something I have learned this term is how hard it is to get ready for a show. You get to do costumes and props and rehearse non-stop. I've had so much fun doing production, I get to hang out with all my friends and be creative 24-7. I've shown the skills of kindness, effort, and creativity. I love everything about The Little Mermaid and can't wait to see how it turns out!
I've learned a new skill with the production, which is dialogue and facial expressions. I'm Ariel and I have a lot of lines so just about every day, I practice. It is hard keeping all the lines inside my head. Also, as Ariel, you need a lot of facial expressions because Ariel gives her voice away. With the Year 6 students and teachers' support, I felt more comfortable and braver singing and acting. I'm not afraid to be Ariel.
This term has been full of production and with that comes costumes.
To make my costume I had to make a scarf. Making a scarf meant I had to sew, and I haven't sewn in my life. This meant I had to learn to sew. When I started, I didn't understand a single thing and it was very complicated. Then it started to get easier, and I knew what to do. Before I knew it, I had sewn my scarf. Now I have the skill I won't have to worry about next time I have to sew.
I was involved in helping to create some of the props for the school play. In this experience, I learned to be more creative and to keep my mind on the task at hand. In my MTQ, I have learned to listen to the teacher more, so I don't miss anything.
This term I have learned to be able to sing louder in bigger spaces so that others can hear me better. I have learnt how to remember all my lines for the production and to never forget what I have learned for choreography because Mrs Wong has a lot of other dances on her mind. I have learned how to act clueless and clumsy when I am being Adella, but also how to have a sweet and soft voice for when I'm being Belle.
This term I have experienced experiential learning in the form of being an Aussie Seagull (SHAZZA).
I have learned how to do an Aussie ancient and be a bird. I have to be funny and make the audience laugh. One of my favourite lines is “Time for an upgrade, I reckon calamari is on me.” I’m being open-minded with every single line I’m given, and I try to be the funniest I can be.
This term I have experienced experiential learning in the form of being a part of our whole school production and learning about all the different things that make a production come to life. I have been using the skill of self-management to help me stay organised and manage my tasks and goals.
This term I have experienced experiential learning as I learned to use the sewing machine and how to stitch. We sewed two red square pieces of fabric together and then stitched some shaped pieces of fabric onto it. Now I know how to sew, I hope that I will be able to sew when I get the chance to.
This term was great because I got to write a synopsis about The Little Mermaid, which is the production we are doing this year. At the assembly in week 2, I performed the synopsis in front of the school. It was great to be able to practice public speaking, and writing to a deadline. The synopsis went great and so did the whole assembly!
At lunch, while I’ve been helping make scenery for production, I learned how to hammer a nail straight on the clamshell that goes behind King Triton’s throne. I was persistent and determined to make the nail go in straight, so I kept on trying.
I also learnt how to use the sewing machine when I had to sew my red scarf for the Fathoms Below scene. I was able to make a buttonhole and sew on a button with the help of Mrs Stocker, something I had never done before.
This term I have been involved in so much experiential learning, such as production. Production can be stressful, but also exhilarating and exciting. You couldn’t say production is easy, but it brings us together. The support from the teachers is incredible, even though it can be difficult dancing and singing at the same time. Learning through production has made me a risk-taker and I know I will benefit from this experience.
Getting up in front of the class to share my maths isn’t my biggest strength but it has challenged me and put me out of my comfort zone. Showing what I have learned has helped my communication skills and my thinking skills, by being ready to share my findings through Maths.
This term I have been busy with production. I have learned a lot about music and drama and the importance of listening and focusing. Without attention to your communication skills, you might not feel like you're in a safe space.
This term I learnt how to convert most fractions into percentages, mixed to improper, the other way around, and more! Unlike my last school, my teacher (Mr Crouch) sat with me and taught me how to do it in a way I could understand! I used to hate fractions, but now that I’m ok with them, I love them!
Thank you, as always, for your support of the students and of us.
JACQUI and JONNO
Year 6 Teachers