Thursday, 17 May 2018

Parent Information Sessions: Anxiety in Children

Please register your interest here if you will be attending one of the sessions.

Wednesday, 16 May 2018

The Sydney Symphony Orchestra (SSO) Animation Challenge

The Sydney Symphony Orchestra is looking for animations created by students that represent one of the following musical movements. 
Create your animation to represent one of these movements:
  • Movement I: Awakening. Track Cue 1: 0.00–6.22
Introduction – Lullaby – Awakening – The Escape
  • Movement II: Plummet. Track Cue 2: 6.22–10.27
Suspension – Slow Motion (Pixilation) – Descending to the Sea
  • Movement III: Trash Vortex.  Track Cue 3: 10.27–14.11 or Track Cue 4: 14.12–18.14
    Surging dirge, reality, beautiful melodies intertwined with the trash vortex texture – Repeat (not literal) – Albatross circling – Ending

You may use any software to create the animation such as:

  • PowerPoint
  • AnimateIt for stop-motion animation
  • DoInk for green screen activities
  • iMovie
  • Adobe Animate
  • Adobe Character Animator
  • Scratch and Scratch Junior
  • Minecraft

How to submit your entry

Upload your animation to YouTube and email the YouTube link to by Monday 21 May 2018.
(Mrs Bassett would also love to see any entries that you submit. Please share with her at
Applications must include:
  • The student's name and age
  • Track cue number
  • A short description of what appealed to them in the music to inspire their visual representation
  • Which animation tools they selected.
The SSO will advise which students' animations selected for screening in the week commencing 21 May 2018.

More information is available here.

Sunday, 13 May 2018

Be a Science TV Reporter competition - Congratulations to Orlando, Darci, Juliette and Hannah

Congratulations to our Science Reporters - Orlando, Darci, Juliette and Hannah

These students have had their video selected to be viewed on the competition gallery. 
You can view their reports here.

Gateways Festivals - Enrolments open now for July program!

G.A.T.E.WAYS has pleasure in inviting
gifted and talented children
 from Years 1-6 to
  ‘The Sydney Festival of Workshops’
 hosted by Ravenswood School for Girls, Gordon
Monday 2nd & Tuesday 3rd July 2018
 from 9.30 - 3.15

(registration 8.45) 

G.A.T.E.WAYS Festivals offer a large range of workshops running concurrently over two days with the emphasis on challenge and fun. Parents may enrol directly at

Enrolment information for parents - setting up an account if a child hasn't been before

Year 1 & 2 program
Year 3 & 4 program
Year 5 & 6 program

Phone 02 9940 0303 if you require assistance or

G.A.T.E.WAYS is an independent, non-funded organisation, established in 1994 to provide opportunities for highly able and gifted children with special educational needs. Like-minded students can participate in programs that will challenge them intellectually and help develop their individual talents.

Saturday, 12 May 2018

14 Phrases Kids Said That Were Code Words for 'I'm Anxious'

Do you know someone who uses these, or similar, phrases? 

You may also be able to access this clip of the same questions.

If you would like to know more about anxiety in children, please come to our parent information session presented by our School Counsellor - Tamara Murrell on Wednesday 23rd May at 9-10 am and 5.30-6.30 pm. Tamara is a CatholicCare School Counsellor (Psychologist) and works at St Mary's on Wednesdays and Thursdays.

Thursday, 10 May 2018

Dare to Escape - a fun, family event for gifted students and their families

Newman Event in Western Sydney Friday 1st June 6.30-8.30pm
A fast-paced, fun and engaging evening designed for Gifted Students and their families to participate in.
This year's theme is "Dare to Escape".
Activities include trivia, brain teasers and an escape room challenge.

Thursday, 3 May 2018

11 Mind-blowing Math Documentaries To Watch

Do you know someone who might be interested in watching some or all of these 11 Mind-blowing Math Documentaries?

30+ Phrases To Calm An Anxious Child

Some very helpful and practical strategies presented here that may be useful if you have a child who is anxious.

14 Kid-Approved Books for Advanced Fifth and Sixth Grade Readers

14 Kid-Approved Books for Advanced Fifth and Sixth Grade Readers

by Kari Ness Riedel

Does your reader love books full of complex characters and thought-provoking themes? Do they get excited when they discover a “really thick” book they haven’t read yet? Do they want to be challenged but still find themselves deeply immersed in a great story? It can be hard for 10-, 11-, and 12-year-old readers who read at a high school (or higher) level to find books that meet their reading needs but are still appropriate for their age and experience. For readers like this, I worry less about what Lexile or Guided Reading level a specific book is and look for books that will offer them a chance to go deeper in their thinking about characters and situations.
Here are 14 books that are loved by young readers on that offer unique character voices, complex plots and themes, and high page counts to engage fifth and sixth grade advanced readers.

20 Kid-Approved Books for Advanced Second and Third Grade Readers

On her blog Kari Ness Riedel provides this link - 

with the following recommendation:

"Here are 20 books recommended by young readers on, an online community where young readers share book reviews and recommendations with friends. The picks range from classic mysteries to modern fantasy to nonfiction. These books are written at a 5th-8th grade reading level, but the content is appropriate for the 7- to 9-year-old crowd."