Saturday, April 26, 2014

Mr Dreyer Shares his Armed Forces Experiences

Many classes have been studying the ANZAC campaign leading up to ANZAC Day on 25 April. 2014 is the 99th year after the campaign at Gallipoli in which just over 11, 000 Australian and New Zealand soldiers (ANZACs) lost their lives.  2721 New Zealand soldiers were killed.

The Senior classes had invited a guest speaker to talk about his experiences and the Year 4 classes were very fortunate to listen to his talk as well.

Mr Dreyer was in the NZ army for 20 years before he retired and took up a business career. 

Mr Dreyer

Mr Dreyer's talk was very interesting and thought provoking.  He described all the wars New Zealand soldiers had fought in to support Britain:
  • Anglo-Egyptian War, 1882
  • The Boer War,  1899 -1902
  • World War 1, in Europe and Africa, 1914 -1918 (at Gallipoli 1915)
  • World War 2,  1939 -1945
  • Korean War,  1950 - 1953
  • Vietnam War, 1956 - 1975 (NZ's involvement was in the years 1965-1971)
  • Conflict in Afghanistan, 2001 - present
He spoke to us about his experiences in the Vietnam War in the mid-1960s.  Life was very difficult during the war, for people on both sides.  Mr Dreyer lost many good friends in that conflict.

He answered many questions and we came away with the following insights:
  • war is not a glorious adventure - it takes a huge toll on people, during and after the conflict
  • soldiers and their support personnel have to work hard as a team
  • the armed forces have changed over time - women are now able to take combat roles if they choose
  • New Zealand soldiers have a major role in peace-keeping around the world
  • much of war can be boring - a lot of waiting around before there is action
  • when in a war, you are only concerned with what you are doing and your small area, rather than thinking about where everyone else is and what they are doing
  • war brings people together so you form very close relationships with the people around you - they are like family, you rely on them, you trust them, you form strong friendships

Mr Dreyer
Outline map of  the Bosphorus area in Turkey

Map showing the peninsula and where the ANZAC came ashore at Gallipoli
This map was interesting because it shows a rectangle which represents the area on the Turkish mainland that was successfully taken and held by the French soldiers during this war.  This was the only successful action in the whole of this campaign.  All the troops that landed on the peninsula, to the left of the map, suffered huge loss of life and heavy casualties.

  • NZ lost 2701 soldiers
  • Australia lost 8,709 men
  • Turkey had 251, 000 casualties of whom more than 86, 000 soldiers were killed.
See these websites for background:     NZ History Online
For an Australian perspective see:      Australian Govt ANZAC site

Each year, at the Dawn Services throughout New Zealand, the sacrifice made by all soldiers lost in war are remembered.

 Lest We Forget

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Cycle Skills - We Finished the Programme!

We were very proud in Week 12 Term 1.  It was the final session in our cycle skills programme with Kerri and Latesha.

Everyone earned their cycle passport after more safety learning about looking to the right slowly to check for cars.  

We love our passports.  They look cool with our own photos - just like a driving licence.

Room 13 is especially proud of all those children who became confident enough to pedal... and to Aaron who ended up loving the experience. Way to go, Aaron! You did it.

Thank you to Kerri and Latesha from Room 13!

A proud group of students with their certificates
Aaron's smile says it all!

Thursday, April 10, 2014

Learning about bacteria and fungus

Room 13 went to a year 5 class today to see the results of some of their investigations into bacteria.We were very amazed at the results! 

Miss Hughes talked to us then showed us some of the petri dishes which had been growing bacteria and mould for a couple of weeks.


Some of the petri dishes looked revolting but we learned that the large, furry patches were fungus not bacteria.  

Bacteria is everywhere in the world - exposure to bacteria is essential so we develop an immunity and we don't get sick.  

We also learned that we need particular types of good bacteria to make things like cheese and yoghurt.

We learned that bacteria shows up in petri dishes as smooth yellow or peach coloured circles. See if you can spot the bacteria in the dishes below...

There was a lot of hand washing that day after we saw these dishes!

We can identify the fungus
and the bacteria... can you?

We will all be washing our hands more carefully.  We need to wash our hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds and make sure that they are thoroughly dried.

It is  important that we wash and dry hands before using the computers.... and before eating.

Thank you Miss H for letting us see the bacteria cultures.  We will never forget them!