STEM at Duncraig Senior High

This term, the Year 6s have been visiting Duncraig Senior High School to participate in a three week STEM program on Tuesday afternoons. Students chose to participate in one of three subject options; problem solving, coding or science.

Here are some insights into their experiences so far.

In problem solving we have drawn multiple patterns and shapes onto either graph or dotted paper. With the graph paper we copied complex patterns following the design sheet closely. On the dotted paper we drew unfamiliar shapes with a varying number of vertices depending on the shape. These shapes were types of optical illusions and were quite challenging to copy. The work required lots of concentration and perseverance as the shapes weren’t always what they seemed. Check out some of our work below!

In coding we have been working with Mr. Norman to code microbit with block coding and python. We have also been learning about algorithms, sequencing and loops. It has been a great experience and we have enjoyed every minute.

In science we have been working in the science lab with proper science equipment. We have learned how to safely light a Bunsen burner and the scientific names of equipment. We have carried out some experiments and enjoyed boiling some red cabbage and rose petals to create a red cabbage and rose petal indicator, which we then used to test the pH of substances including vinegar and milk. It has been great fun!

We have all really enjoyed visiting the high school and we are looking forward to going next year.


Duncraig Primary School recently participated in the North Western heat of the Interschool Numero Competition. Congratulations to the members of the three teams; Duncraig Dragons, Dynamite and Dugites. Thank you to the team members; Kade, Hayley, Sasha, Alex, Cooper, Julia, Zaxson, Rowan, Josh, Jay, Scarlett, Sofia and Mila. All competitors did a fabulous job, performing their best maths under time pressure and in front of an audience.

The Duncraig Dragons deserve a special mention for winning the heat and progressing to represent our school at the State Final, which was held at Sutherland Dianella Primary on 11th November.

Huge congratulations to the Dragons’ four members; Alex, Hayley, Kade and Sasha who finished third in the state! With a total of 210 teams entered across the heats, this is a significant achievement for the team and the school. We are super proud of their hard work and dedication over the year!

Teddy Bear Picnic- Kindy

‘We have been learning about bears and teddy bears in Kindy this term. On Monday 25 October, Kindy A children were so excited to be invited to bring their teddy bears to school for a Teddy Bears Picnic! Parents and grandparents were also invited to attend picnic! Despite the rain we enjoyed a lovely picnic together with delicious food!

After lunch the rain cleared, and we treated our teddy bears to a bounce on our parachute and sang a teddy bear song for our families! This event was full of love, laughter and good food! Thanks so much to everyone who came and helped make this a highlight of our year and a very memorable day for all the children! ‘

Shaun Tan

Throughout the course of the year, Year 6’s in Rooms 1 and 2 have been studying the works of world renowned, Perth born author and artist Shaun Tan.  We have studied a few of his many books including Cicada, The Rabbits and The Lost Thing. We have also enjoyed viewing the Academy Award winning The Lost Thing short film, an adaptation of the book. If you haven’t seen it, check it out!

Shaun Tan has been inspirational to us, as we created our own “Miscellaneous Anomalies” in the style of his characters.  We emailed these to him to enjoy, along with a few questions we devised.  Much to our excitement, he responded by answering all of our questions!

Below are a few Shaun Tan inspired anomalies created by our students.

Science Week

Wow what a week. This year’s theme was Food Different by Design. To kick the week off the year 6 leadership team helped Mrs Jackson make 10 minute ice cream in a bag. Every day in the Science room, the students from pre-primary to year six investigated how salt is used to lower the melting point of ice, thereby freezing the ice-cream quicker. All students had the opportunity to make and sample delicious home made ice-cream. This was a huge success and couldn’t have been achieved without the help of the year 6 leaders.

On Wednesday 18th August each class rotated with their buddy class through several highly engaging science workshops. Jacqui Batley and her team of PhD students from UWA taught the children how to extract DNA from strawberries. Tom Becker one of our parents who is a Curtin University lecturer taught the students how to test the chromatography of M&M’s. Ray Palermo taught the symmetry of fruit. Holly, one of year 4 students, confidently presented her dad’s work in the agricultural industry. Diann McKenzie created an engaging experience for the students teaching them about sustainability in our Kitchen Garden. The teacher ran a very popular workshop on blindfolded fruit tasting. Overall, the day and week was a wonderful way for the students to experience food science in the world around them.

Nadine Jackson

Science teacher

Bonjour à tous ! 

I have recently been to two major professional developments.

The Teachers Of French Assoc (TOFA) and  Languages Big Day Out.

Each conference usually has up to about 100 attendees and are a great way for me to often show case the  excellent work our students are producing.

At the TOFA Conference I was able to show our Year 6 Calligramme work which really inspired French colleagues to return to their schools intending to try out this creative cultural task. Above I am seated with Mme Iri Mukwekwezeke who is the French teacher at Harrisdale Primary TDS School. 

At the Languages Big Day Out I was able to show our wonderful Year 6 brochure writing, hopefully inspiring and demonstrating to Primary French teachers how to create fun ideas that incorporate our new syllabus.

Languages Week is celebrated in the first week of August. This year the Year 5 students are bringing their IPads to class whereby we will research as manylanguages as possible highlighting the word  “Welcome”. Already in class we came up with “Bienvenue” for French and then amongst the class we listed Italian, German, Chinese, Mandarin, Arabic, Russian, Persian, Maouri and Portuguese ! That was amazing just sourcing amongst ourselves ! We will display our Language Week Posters in the Library in Weeks 4 and 5!

Enfin a big thank you to parents from  Year 5 and 6 who have written such useful and highly positive comments regarding their children’s  written French class work. It is exciting to send you samples to view.

Year 3 and 4 students are currently making posters for our French Room and many students are telling me that they are teaching younger siblings all their French at home !

Keep up the family French lessons Juniors!

Bonne semaine !

 Madame Wilderspin.

Classroom News – Room 13

We have been exploring line, patterns, shapes and colour in our art. After viewing abstract portraits by Pablo Picasso we created our own.

Recently we have been studying seasons. When visiting the front office over the next few weeks you will be able to view our rainy day landscapes.

A Digital Technology Focus

Room 18 – A Digital Technology Focus for Term Three

This term the students of Room 18 will be developing their understanding of digital technologies.  They will be learning about digital hardware (printer, keyboard, mouse;) and software (PowerPoint, Google, messaging;). The students will develop their skills in the use of digital technology by accessing both tablets and laptops. They will learn to represent data in a variety of ways.  PowerPoint will be used as a tool to develop their skills to insert pictures, make changes to font, background, layout and design.  Cyber safety will also be a feature of the program such as the importance of not sharing personal information.  Our buddies joined us on at the beginning of the term to teach us how to turn on and login on laptops.  The students then had the opportunity to work collaboratively to explore the tools available on PowerPoint.  I would like to take this opportunity to thank Courtney Dingley for supporting the students this last semester to develop their understanding of coding with our class robot called Botley.

Classroom News – Pre primary room 16

In Room 16 we have been exploring the work of artist, Wayne Theibaud, an American artist who is famous for his bright paintings of still life food. We explored his famous artworks including ‘Cakes, 1963’, ‘Candies, 1965-66’ and ‘Four cupcakes’ and made some responses about what we liked, felt and thought.

We then used our knowledge to create our own cupcakes artwork. We used primary colours for the bases of our cakes and secondary colours for the tops. We decorated them with delicious toppings and coloured them using wax crayons. Finally, we painted the foreground with yellow edicole dye, and background with purple. We tried to show shadows in our works, just like Wayne Theibaud.

We also baked cupcakes and decorated them using a variety of candies. We explored 3D shapes as we did this, using cubes, cylinders, spheres and triangular prisms in our toppings.

We reflected on our work using 2 stars to say what we were proud of about our work, and a wish to say what we could improve on.

We think our art work looks good enough to eat! What do you think?

Classroom News – Room 11

This term Room 11 have been learning about friendship. Do you know the qualities of a good friend? We have been discovering through many activities what makes a good friend and the attributes we need to be a good friend to others. We have been sharing many stories, one of our favourites being ‘The Hare With Many Friends’. The scoop on friendship was one of the many activities that we were involved in to reinforce our learning.