Charleville School of Distance Education
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Parry Street
Charleville QLD 4470

Phone: 07 4656 8999
Fax: 07 4656 8900

August 2017

Newsletter Articles

Principal’s Ponderings

Welcome to the end of July and to the windy month of August.

A very happy birthday to all horses for the first of August!

This term we welcomed Daniel Clunn who commenced on the 10th July and Tim Wicks. These gentlemen are replacing teachers on leave. We welcome also Erica Anderssen as a Teacher Aide.

To explain staffing:

Katie Allen is teaching year 6 until further notice.

Deidre Huddy is in the STLN role behind Katie, and Tim will be behind Deidre, so his role will be part STLN, part SWD and relief behind Secondary teachers while they have data and observation days.

Katy Williams will continue to provide relief behind Primary teachers for data and observation days.

A Teacher Aide position has been advertised (SWD hours). Ellen Daunis is at present in this role.

Erica Anderssen has commenced in the Teacher Aide role for Minilit/Multilit support


Your student’s reports will be sent from the school as soon as they have arrived here.

Field Events:

Cluster Musters: A pleasing attendance at the Cluster Musters with the students learning and practising track and field activities and the Home Tutor sessions on Skills for School Room Management (the step before Behaviour Management). Congratulations to everyone who delivered the track and field skills to our students last week at Mitchell, Quilpie, Charleville and St George. The smiles on children’s faces, the fun and presentations make it all worthwhile.

Sports Muster Reminders: Commencing the morning of Thursday 17 August. Photos on Thursday afternoon. Student Council are organising the evening.

Friday 8.30 am start and finish after the presentation – about 1pm.

Remember to get your student lunch orders in.

Multischool: The Western Alliance is running smoothly. Sarah as an experienced Secondary teacher is taking some leadership in WA. Sarah, Chris (the HOD) and the three Principals met in Brisbane to continue to develop the Learning Support, Reading, Reporting and other topics to ensure the smooth running of the WA.

Parents of students in Year 6 will be given more information about what the Western Alliance is and how it operates in the near future. This will help when decisions about year 7 and secondary options are being made.

A careers camp is organised for October.

Master Teacher: Brooke Andrews is based with us for Mondays and Tuesdays and is working with individual teachers to enhance their lesson delivery and knowledge of the how of teaching. Brooke will focus is on computational fluency (the efficient automatic recall of addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division facts; the efficient and automatic recall and use of standard algorithms for addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division) and Back to Front Maths in the Year Three classes.

Playground: The shade cover has been ordered and upon supply of materials Mark Wilkes will construct it. Thank you to the P&C for the successful shade application for the Playground. The student council are giving $500 for the cover, along with the P&C $5000, and the school $5000.

Leadership: Mary Anderssen and Sarah have commenced Leadership sessions for all Year 6 and 9 students. These sessions are for any student, not just those who are keen to nominate as school and house captains. Please encourage your students to participate.

Also, Mary and Rachel Cooper have Student Council up and running. The students are running a tight meeting and have exciting things organised for Sports Muster!

Welding competition: Have you started a sculpture to grace our school grounds as a unique example and proud display of something that depicts your property or home? Please see the Arts and Crafts information booklet for the details.

Wishing you all a wonderful August, an exciting Sports Muster, successful learning experiences for those students and staff attending the year’s 3-6 camp and Multischool and a productive Management Meeting.

Yours in education,


“Educating the mind without educating the heart is no education at all”.


From the Deputy’s Desk

Goodbye July. Hello August!

As usual, we have lots to look forward to over the next few weeks.

As I write this article, Cluster Musters are happening concurrently at Charleville and St George. I enjoyed the conversations and ideas put forward by the parents at Quilpie and Charleville in the Keep them coming! Thank you to the parents at Mitchell for your understanding. We will mail out the handout given to the parents at the other musters. The attendance figures at all the Cluster Musters were very healthy. Students participated in ball games, relay races, long jump and for some musters, high jump as practice for the upcoming Sports Muster.

Speaking of Sports Muster, MSP Photography are taking student and class photographs. Please see the newsletter attachment “Say Cheese” for important information about money and envelopes. The Student Council is having a stall and will be selling chips, lollies, drinks and popcorn. A ‘Guess how many lollies in the jar’ competition will be run. Thank you to Mrs Swadling for the donation of the lollies and jar. On the Thursday night, the Student Council will be running a movie night. To coincide with Science Week, there will be a 10 minute Science video shown, followed by a feature film suitable for all ages, also run by the Student Council. I know that everyone will support their fund-raising efforts.

The Student Leadership Program currently being delivered by Mrs Anderssen (Yr 5) and myself (Yr 9) has been well attended. It is not too late to join us! Just email me ( and I can provide you with the details.

Camp arrangements are currently being finalised. We have 40 students attending, accompanied by Ms Jenyns, Mrs Nass, Mrs Itzstein, Mrs Washbrook, Mrs Allen and Mrs Simmons. Details will be coming out in the next couple of weeks of the bus route, bus pickup times and places, the activity program, and medical forms (if updates are needed). Please don’t forget some extra money for students to purchase food and drinks on travel days. Students are welcome to pack their own food in disposable wrapping (due to limited space on the bus) for the Monday, but will need money for Friday.

Visits to the school. During the first week of term, we had Career Advisors from the University of Southern Queensland come into the school and deliver a presentation to Year 9 & 10 Western Alliance students on career pathways. It was very well attended for a 3.00pm start time. I was very impressed with the dedication and interest shown by our students.

During August we will have visits from two schools from the Gold Coast. Ormeau Woods State High School and Coomera Anglican College are visiting. Ormeau Woods SHS students and several of our students have exchanged pen pal letters. Coomera Anglican College will be performing for our students on Wednesday 30 August at 3pm.

PLO Prattle

Welcome back to Term 3. At the lunch table today the discussion was how quickly Term 3 is going already and before we blink the end will be in site. Cluster Musters, Multischool, Sports Muster and Year 3 – Year 6 Camp, in between some school work.

I would like to share a photo of our daughter who was married in early June. This was a very proud moment for our family.

This month Michael Grose discusses, Strong families thrive on good feelings.

That doesn’t mean that such families are devoid of conflict or criticism, but that they are generally pleasant environments to be part of.

One way to increase good feelings in your family is to increase the number of compliments kids hear at home.

As a general rule, the ratio of compliments to criticism should be around five to one. That is, there should be five times more positive, affirming comments than negative comments.

In unhealthy families this ratio is often reversed. Five negative comments for every one positive comment makes for a pretty toxic environment.

How does your family rate on this scale?

If you think about where your family may be on this scale, be careful about how much weight you put on your children’s comments, especially to each other. Siblings can be unkind to each other, finding it hard to share a pleasant word, which can skew the positive to negative ratio a lot (and sometimes make family life quite awful for everyone).

However, this can change over time.

Here are five ideas to help you improve the compliments to criticism ratio in your family:

  1. Increase the number of affirmations and compliments you make yourself.
  2. Keep a check on your use of ‘good feeling killers’ (and self-esteem killers). Eradicate comments such as: “Typical boy!” “If I’ve told you once I’ve told you a 1,000 times, don’t…” “What a stupid thing to say to your brother/sister!”. Bite your tongue. If you find yourself thinking a criticism, keep it to yourself.
  3. Make kids aware of their negative language.
  4. Make it a habit to follow a negative with a positive.
  5. Let the bad feelings out.

These, along with affectionate phrases and kind remarks, will start to skew the ratio a bit. Aim for a five to one ratio. Not only is this good modelling for your kids, but it will make family life more harmonious. Yep, five to one is your aim. If you can’t do that, then you can’t expect it of your kids.

Constant criticism harms self-esteem, not to mention family harmony. Use ‘I’ statements to let kids understand the impact their negative talk has on you and others. “When you talk so aggressively I feel quite scared about what you are going to do next.” It’s impossible for kids to disagree with ‘I’ statements.

When I was teaching I always tried to follow discipline of a student with a compliment or some positive feedback so that we could maintain a good relationship. Do the same in your family. Follow discipline, a rebuke or a negative comment with a positive act or comment. Then teach your kids to do the same!

Sometimes there can be such a build-up of ill will between siblings that you need find a way for them to let the bad feelings out. One way to do this is let one child vent to you about their sibling. Be warned that you may not like what you hear but a clearing of the air can work wonders to improve the family atmosphere.

Most of these suggestions start with you, the parent. Like everything in family life, whatever you want from your kids, you must take the lead and do first. Remember, five positives to one negative is your aim!

Have you booked your accommodation for Sports Muster? Don’t leave it to the last minute.

Hope to see as many of you as possible at Sports Muster.


Helen Cook
Parent Liaison Officer

Digital Discoveries

Microsoft Office 2016 Free

Students of Charleville SDE are able to access a free copy of Microsoft Office 2016 via Education Queensland. This provided students with the latest version of Microsoft Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Publisher and Outlook. To access your copy contact the school technicians for a copy on CD or visit:

Student Email Addresses

Every State School student is provided with their own school email address as part of the Managed Internet Service (MIS) operated by the Education Department. Students are encouraged to use to their school email address to communicate with their class mates and teachers. Email addresses created using the following format (username) where the username is that that the student uses to access all Learning Place resources. Students can check their school email by going to the link below or clicking on the School Webmail link on the School’s website.

Why Student Email Accounts?

  • By having individual email accounts, students can take control of their communication with peers and teachers and become more independent as they grow older.
  • Parents can set up Microsoft Outlook to allow students to check their accounts without interfering with personal, business or home email accounts.
  • As students are using a standard program and accounts teachers will be able to assist with technical issues as everyone is talking a common language.
  • Finally, the EQ Code of Conduct says that teachers are not be using the personal email addresses of students, but rather their EQ email addresses and the addresses of parents.

How to Encourage your Student to Email

The key is to start simple! Start by getting your child to email their teacher to ask a question or to tell them about something they really enjoyed in a lesson. Encourage your child to type their teachers name at the beginning and their own name at the end.

iPad App of the Month: Maths Apps

These apps are quite unique as they are available both online and on your iPad, so you can use them on the computer and your iPad.

Fractions – draw and compare fractions on a whiteboard
Geoboard – use the grid and rubber bands to make shapes and learn about the properties
Vocabulary Cards – help develop language to do with maths
Number Frames – help students to structure numbers to 5, 10, 20 and 100
Number Lines – help students visualise number sequences
Number Pieces – help students develop place value understandings

Learn more and get the link to download from:

Primary Student Work from Cluster Musters

Our fabulous eKindy, Prep and Primary teachers took on the challenge of getting our students involved in robotics activities that were engaging and incorporating a range of subject areas. From all accounts from people who saw what the students came up with I am sure everyone agrees that the teachers were successful in raising to the challenge! Well done all students and teachers involved!

Primary Student Work from Cluster Musters
Primary Student Work from Cluster Musters
Click images to enlarge

Check out the latest blog posts:

Prep – Year 3 Student Link:

Years 4 – 9 Student Link:

Year 10 Student Link:

Teaching and Learning Library

Chareville SDE is committed to Professional Learning Communities

Teachers in our school are part of Professional Learning Communities (PLCs). These groups meet once a fortnight to discuss best practice. This term, we will be using the Inquiry Cycle of Scan and Assess, Prioritise, Develop and Plan, Act and Review. Primary teachers will be focussing on reading and secondary teachers focussing on inducting new students.

What does this mean for you? Well… we don’t know yet, but I wanted to give you the heads up that it is going to mean that changes are going to come. These changes will most likely impact on-air lessons and reading group lessons and the activities we suggest you do to support reading at home might also change depending upon what comes from inquiry and the research. What we are confident about is that these changes will be for the better.

For example, we have already identified that vocabulary development is an issue for many of our students. So… what practices can we do to change this? In our discussions, we have identified that many of our teachers are already incorporating this into their lessons but are struggling with how to do the follow up activity with limited on-air time. To solve this problem, an idea was floated around that perhaps Home Tutors and parents could do the follow up activities in place of reading for the day. So… not adding any additional workload, but trying something different.

Another idea that was floated around was that instead of doing ‘round robin’ reading in our reading groups, perhaps we could get students to read and decode the text prior to the reading group. Then, during the reading group, teachers can focus more on comprehension strategies.

As you can see… there is the possibility of some changes in practice. I don’t want you to be worried about this. Instead I would really love for you to be open to these possibilities and understand that a reading focus needs to be based on student need. For example… if students still need to learn to decode, that will be the focus of their lessons but if there is a group of students that are struggling with vocabulary, the lesson focus needs to shift to support them with that.

I am really excited for what this will mean for our students. However, if you have any questions or concerns, please don’t hesitate to contact myself or your class teacher. Some exciting times ahead

On another note, the HT drop in sessions are running again this term. Below is a list of what sessions we will be running:

I hope to see you there!

Zoe Farrer
Head of Department – Teaching and Learning

Curriculum Corner

It seems that we are continuing to have issues with the eTeach discs. Thankfully, we seem to have sorted the USB sticks and discs and the issues seem to be more related to computer software than the discs/USBs.

I would like to send a friendly reminder and encourage you to spend some time looking at:

  1. the instructions that come with the discs
  2. the printed materials
  3. the disc

These units are not like your Science or English units. All of the learning for these units comes from the lessons on the disc. Without that, it will be near impossible for students to access the learning they need to in order to complete the unit successfully. Please do this ASAP… don’t wait until the unit has started.

As stated in the instructions, please access the story.swf file. The html file is there only for Mac users and it will not work well enough for most PC users. If you do use the html file, you will experience freezing, lessons not loading and a lack of formatting.

In order for the .swf file to play, you will need the most up to date flash player installed on your computer. If you click the .swf file and it won’t open, it is most likely that this software is not installed. Please do not revert back to using the html because it opens. Please install flash player which should also be included on your disc. If the one on the disc doesn’t work, a free download is available.

I am confident that these units will work and will be great units for our students to complete. However, they will need you to understand how they work and the appropriate software to run them.

If in doubt… please call our computer technician, Bill Grant and he will walk you through the process.

We are finding more and more, that issues related to curriculum are actually related to older computers and out of date software. It is vital to the smooth running of the curriculum and your schoolroom that software is up to date and that computers are not too old. If your computer is playing up, there is a big possibility it is a warning sign that it is about to give up.

If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact me.


Zoe Farrer
HOD – Teaching and Learning

From the Technician’s Table

Did you know that most problems with the phone and headset can usually be resolved over the phone?

There are occasions when the equipment does go faulty, but the equipment is so designed that it can be fixed in parts.

The Headset has replaceable parts such as:

  • Voice Tube - (slides off the metal boom arm on the Headset)
  • Foam Ear Pads - (if deteriorated can easily be replaced)
  • PTT Switch - (Push To Talk Switch)
  • Vista Cable - (lower part of the cable that plugs into the Phone and into the PTT Switch)

The Phone also has some replaceable parts such as:

  • Handset Cord(coiled cord from Phone to the Handset)
  • Handset(Phone Handpiece)
  • Phone Cable(cable that goes from the Phone to the wall socket)
  • Adaptor Plug(adaptor from RJ12 to 605 plug)

This was deliberately done when we originally developed the phone equipment for the use of the students so that they could have minimum downtime when something went wrong.

The school has most parts in stock so these can easily be sent to families to replace the faulty parts.

Most times the phone can be still used for lessons in some form or another until the new part/s arrives.

There will be the odd time that the phone or headset may be completely faulty and needs to be replaced but we usually can get a replacement to you.

This is why the school asks for the families to contact the Technical Officer if something goes wrong before sending any phone equipment back to the school (unless cancelling).

The Technical Officer also asks the families if they can retain the boxes and packaging that the phone equipment came in for when it has to be returned to the school.

Some phones have come back to the school dirty and we would like to remind the families that it is a condition of the Loan Agreement that you keep the phone clean otherwise a cleaning fee may be deducted from your Bond.

Cleaning Your Phone and Headset

It is important to keep your school phone and headset clean so it remains in working condition. Here are some handy hints:

  • Clean using a damp cloth with a little bit of ‘Spray and Wipe’ (applying it to a cloth, not directly onto the equipment)
  • A quick wipe is often the best way to keep the equipment clean
  • Headsets have foam ear pads that can be taken off and washed in warm soapy water then rinsed and allowed to dry completely before putting back onto the headset
  • The voice tube on the headset (the clear plastic tube) can be slid off and soaked in warm soapy water for 5—10 minutes. During this time blow back through the tube a couple of times to unblock the filter end.
  • Rinse the voice tube with clean water and leave to dry completely before reattaching to the headset.

If you have any problems with your phone or headset please contact the school technician before sending any equipment into the school.

If you have any problems with your Phone or Headset please contact Bill Grant on 07 4656 8909

Km Club


KM Club is about to start. Are you ready? Print out the tracking sheet found on notices or in the email sent out by your teacher. Track the points you earn in Weeks 4, 5, 6 and 7 of this term and email them to your teacher by Monday of each week.

Remember points can be earned in a number of ways and there is 20 points each day to be earnt when participating in Sports Muster.

Currently Kanyanna has a few extra kilometres to cover, to catch up with Narungi, but with parents, home tutors and teachers participating they’ll soon catch up. You can earn brag tags and stickers for each kilometre you complete. The team with the most overall kilometres, at Swim Muster, will win the perennial KM Club trophy.

P & C News

Welcome to Term 3, hope you are all having a great year so far.

The P&C still have a Minutes Secretary position vacant. If anyone is interested, please contact Brie Boyle or Michelle McInnerney. The P&C is a great group to work with, you will never feel alone. It is also a great chance to get involved in the school and work together to make anything possible.

Sports Muster

Hope everyone has their accommodation booked for Sports Muster. This is a great event for all the family (husbands included) with not only the Sporting events, but the art and craft competition, the smoko challenge, book club, a cent sale and a Souvenir and Uniform stall.

Just remember to get your children lunch orders in ASAP. The children’s lunches and smokos will be provided by Leith Brennan. The Charleville CWA ladies have kindly offered to run the canteen over the two days for everyone else.

On the Thursday night the P & C will be holding a BBQ dinner at the School, 5.30pm. There will be Burgers and Sausage on Bread available to purchase. This night is a great opportunity for everyone to catch up with friends and meet new ones. Please BYO alcoholic drinks.

This year’s smoko challenge is in the theme of Book Week…. Please bring a plate to share. Get your thinking caps on if you are feeling adventurous and plan a plate around your child’s favourite book or character. Not only is the smoko challenge a yearly competition between families and teachers (which teachers provide the smoko at Swim/Speech and Awards), the smoko at Sports Muster will be Families Vs Govies. Mums, let’s see if we can beat the Govies this year with some amazing food. Please contact Brie Boyle or Sue Hurford for any questions and if you can help on the day setting up.

Battery Drive

This is constantly ongoing. If you have any old batteries lying around at home, contact Anne-Marie and Gregg - A lot of money has been raised for the P and C through the battery drive.


Please ensure that your Pie Drive Order Forms are filled out and sent back. The pies are a great way for a quick dinner after a busy day. Pick up your order at Sports Muster and stock up your freezer with some yummy pies and sweets.

Paula Harrison is organizing the Cent Sale at Sports Muster. Could each family please donate one item for the cent sale. Tickets will be $5 a sheet and will close Friday morning so that people can collect their prizes before heading home. Please let Paula Harrison know what you are bringing and if you can help on the day -

Ticket sellers will be required at Sports Muster, so please consider putting your name down for an hour.


We are always looking out for ways to fund money to assist our students, families and the school. If you hear of any grants, please contact Christy Bredhauer -


All memberships are NOW DUE

If you have not been receiving the documents for the meetings, your membership is not current for 2017. Membership is free. Please complete a form and send to the secretary.


Tim Wicks has joined our team at CSDE. He has taught in remote communities (NT & QLD), in Indonesia and in the city. He has held a lot of different roles in schools, and worked in ICT and special schools too. Tim is passionate about games based learning, and is a Google Certified Teacher & a Minecraft Educator, training teachers on using the game as a teaching tool in their classrooms.

He is really excited to be in Charleville, and working with families of CSDE.