Jestem dumny i wesoly – ide dzis do polskiej szkoly!
Polska szkola super sprawa – nauka, koledzy i zabawa!
The 100th Anniversary of the Battle of Warsaw
ON THE 100TH ANNIVERSARY OF THE BATTLE OF WARSAW THE MACARTHUR POLISH SATURDAY SCHOOL REMEMBERS ITS HEROES
On Saturday, August 15, 2020, we celebrated the 100th anniversary of the Battle of Warsaw, referred to as the 18th decisive battle in the history of the world. “It was a special moment for Poland, reborn after years of captivity. In the hour of the trial, the entire nation fought to defend the hard-won freedom. The victory, known as the Miracle on the Vistula, became a glue for the next generations of Poles”. (Text Source)
We too, the community of the Macarthur Polish Saturday School, paid tribute to our heroic ancestors through a short program commemorating this great anniversary. Unfortunately, due to the current situation caused by the coronavirus pandemic, we were unable to invite our dear parents, grandparents and guardians to our performance. On Saturday, August 15 – teachers from each class conducted lessons whose main goal was to develop patriotic feelings in our students by learning about this extremely important for Poland and the whole of Europe victorious battle. The lesson content was adjusted to the age and knowledge skills of children. At 12:00 we all met in our school yard. While standing on the grass, students and teachers formed the shape of Poland, and the Vistula River “flowed” through its centre. The background for our performance was a large white and red Polish flag. It was in this setting that we sang the song “Plynie, Wisla plynie”, known to us all since very early age. We are very happy to share with you photos from this event. Let us be united by the pride of the heroism of our ancestors who fought for the freedom of Poland with the sacrifice of their lives. With all my heart I would like to thank our wonderful students for their beautiful performance. I strongly believe that Poland will never be lost again not only because our majestic Vistula River flows as it always have, but also because we have such wonderful students and their outstanding parents and grandparents. It is you, who bring your children to Polish schools every Saturday, to ensure that our Polish language, culture and tradition of the country of our ancestors last here on a continent thousands of kilometres away from our homeland. I would also like to thank our beloved teachers together with Celinka, Michal, Darek and Kris for their ongoing help and support.
WE WILL REMEMBER YOU!
Summary of Term 2
After a long break, we had to get used to each other all over again, ie remembering the names of teachers and classmates in the group, as well as the rules of behaviour in the classroom and in the school yard. During the first class, we repeated the material processed during the first term:
- Graphomotor exercises (drawing with a pencil along a trace)
- Developing the ability to pick up and understand children’s literature (reading stories or poems out loud to children).
The new topics discussed during Term 2 were:
- Different professions.
- Four Seasons with particular emphasis on WINTER.
The main goal of the topic PETS was to familiarise children with the ways of expressing respect to our domestic pets, such as: cats, dogs or fish in the aquarium, and how to properly care for them. During the lessons, preschoolers played the roles of various pets and imitated their sounds. During art time, we made our favourite animal together.
The main aim of the topic related to different PROFESSIONS was to broaden the children’s knowledge of what adults do in their daily work. My observations show that young children (3-5 years old) are keenly interested in what their parents, older cousins ??or grandparents do for work. Children enthusiastically describe what work their mum or dad is doing and they imitate that profession while playing with their peers.
Another topic discussed was introduction of the characteristic features for each of the four seasons based on the analysis of the illustration “FOUR SEASONS”. The aim of this lesson was to make the children aware of how many seasons we have and how we can correctly distinguish and recognise each of them (weather conditions, processes occurring in nature, wearing appropriate clothes).
Kinder & Year 1
After a long break caused by the coronavirus pandemic, we enthusiastically returned to school for the last four Saturdays of the second term. I could see the joy painted on the faces of our students when they could finally meet their classmates whom they had not seen for so long.
In class I, the children learned five magic letters, which included: E, Ó, U, P, Y. I think that the biggest problem for boys and girls was the letters “Ó” and “U”. It is not easy to understand why a letter that can be written in two different ways is pronounced exactly the same way. For our pupils, this is just the beginning of the adventure with this magical and sometimes problematic letter. During the lesson, we have discussed the ways how honey is made. There were questions like: Where do the bees live? Do bees have their queen? What do bees do in winter? Is honey sweet, sour or bitter? Should we care for the bees and why?
During the introduction of the letter “P” thanks to our imagination, we could see “falling snow”, while we sang a joyful song “Winter, winter, winter.” We also talked about penguins, which are birds that love to play in the snow. We squeezed together under a large umbrella to shelter from heavy snow. There were also action games pretending we were a train to the rhythm of the well-known song “Jedzie pociag z daleka”.
These were really busy and extremely interesting four Saturdays at our Polish school. We are looking forward to seeing students of classes “0” and I in the next term of the 2020 school year.
Year 2 & 3
In term two, the students of grades 2 and 3 learned more difficult letters from the Polish alphabet. First it was the double sign “sz” and then “cz”. Children enthusiastically tried to pronounce words that are sometimes difficult to say phonetically, such as: czapka, szalik, szumi, czas, poszli, czekali and the like. On the second last Saturday of Term 2, we started our adventure with softening some of the sounds in Polish language. The first softening that we have been learning about was “s” and “si”. We paid a lot of attention to reading exercises, as well as building simple and more complex sentences with the new words, in which you could find a newly learned sounds. The students also matched the pictures with the written words they had learned in class. It was great fun! The children were very good at understanding the new concept of softening the letter “s” with either a dash or an “i”. At the same time, they were able to distinguish in which words they belonged. Learning the song “Siala baba mak” was a great help in learning how to pronounce these difficult sounds correctly. We had a lot of fun singing this famous Polish song.
Year 4, 5 & 6
In the second term of the current school year, students from the oldest class:
- Completed their “How to stay healthy” posters. The girls and boys were brainstorming everything that helps develop our physical and mental health, and then worked in groups on posters promoting a healthy lifestyle. Dear children – your work was really great! We strongly believe that this lesson was not only a great opportunity to enrich your Polish vocabulary, but also broadened your knowledge of how each of us should care for our own health and the health of others
- Presented to students from younger grades a staging of a poem by Stanislaw Jachowicz “Chory kotek”. The props for the poem were made by the children during class time.
- They worked on expanding vocabulary around the topic of “Winter” in Poland and Australia. Together with the teacher, the students even “made” their own snowmen.
- They focused and practiced the singular and plural forms of nouns.
- Each of the Saturday class ended with singing the canon “Panie Janie”.
Our joyful lunch breaks
I think it would be extremely hard to find someone who doesn’t like school breaks. In any case, I have never met anyone like that. Breaks are a time of joy, socializing and relaxation for both children and us teachers. Below you will find a collage of photos that I managed to take during a few breaks last term. I must admit that watching the students of our school play happily with each other gives me and other teachers a lot of joy and satisfaction. We see friendships being made. Also the smile and enthusiasm of these children are simply contagious and spread to all of us – while motivating us and giving us strength. I strongly believe that the memories of those breaks spent at play in our Saturday school will remain in the memory of our pupils for many years to come, and the friendships that were made here will survive the passage of time and our kids will take them with them into their adults’ lives.
A 100 Anniversary of birth of Saint John Paull II
Last Monday, May 18, 2020, we commemorated the 100th anniversary of the birth of our Great Countryman – Saint John Paul II. On that day in Poland, many occasional concerts and festivities were held to celebrate the memory of this extremely unique Person. We too – the community of the Macarthur Polish Saturday School – expressed our gratitude for the gift of Karol Wojtyla’s life by making beautiful frames for the portrait of the Great Saint. I would like to thank Mrs. Cecylia Macioch for her yet another – beautiful initiative.
A beautiful gift from Poland
I am very delighted to share with you the exciting news, which – I trust – will raise and strengthen the hearts and minds of many of you during these difficult and crazy times… Around mid-March – a week before the sudden closing of the school due to coronavirus, I received a package from Poland sent to me by my very good friend who is an English language teacher at the Primary School in Radlow (Poland). The city of Radlow is located in the region of Poland called Malopolska – about 10 km from the town where I come from. In January this year when with a great anxiety the whole world was witnessing the tragedy of bushfires, which since November was continuously devastating our continent, my friend – Mrs. Beata Maciaszek contacted me and offered to prepare a gift for our school community. She got one of the grades that she was teaching involved in the preparation of this gift. The goal which Mrs. Beata had set for herself was to “lift our hearts and spirits” during this extremely difficult time. Mrs. Beata also asked me if our school community would be interested in long-term cooperation with Radlow Primary School, which would give us the opportunity to exchange experiences regarding issues related to pollution and protecting the world’s natural environment. In mid-March, when the package from Poland reached us, the whole world was more and more plunged into the tragedy associated with the coronavirus pandemic, which was starting to affect every human-inhabited continent. Recently, I was able to find more time to sit back, take a good look and read carefully the materials received from Radlow Primary School. I have to admit that I was deeply moved and touched while reading the wishes from both children and teachers. Mrs. Beata and her students have put a lot of work and heart into preparing this beautiful package for us…
Included in this gift were hand-drawn cards with Koala bears and more. There were also greeting cards for each of our teachers, which, unfortunately, I have not yet managed to pass on, because coronavirus succeeded in turning our lives upside down, everything went so quickly and the school was suddenly closed…
Among the materials sent to us you could also find a beautiful poem dedicated to us – written with the intention of lifting our spirits – please read it for yourself – I guarantee lots of positive feelings, warm thoughts, and maybe some tears of emotion…
The thought that came to my mind after reading all the submitted materials are primarily related to the fact that TRUE GOODNESS is still very much present in this world that we live in and you don’t really need to look far to find it. The proof is children’s hearts full of compassion and empathy for the misfortune that happens to another human being. I bow my head low to the work of Mrs. Beata, the School Principal and the entire Teaching Staff at the Radlow Primary School, who, in addition to providing children with knowledge related to subject teaching, instill in them moral and ethical values.
We sincerely and wholeheartedly congratulate you all!
We wish you perseverance, patience and, above all, a lot of good health and hope in these difficult times. Finally, please extend our congratulations and warm words of gratitude to all those children who were directly involved in preparing the package for us. Dearest Children – you are truly amazing! THANK YOU from the bottom of our hearts! We wish you nothing but success in the future! I must admit that after seeing what you have sent us, it looks like you are on your way to succeed in life!
We promise that you will hear from us again 🙂
Students, Parents and Teachers from the Macarthur Polish Saturday School
Happy Mother’s Day Celebrations to all wonderful and loving Mums from the Macarthur Saturday Polish School! Thank you for every hug, word of encouragement, and acts of love! Best Mother’s Day Wishes for today and always 🙂
“Drawing for the Pope” Competition
On April 2 we remembered the 15th anniversary of the death of our Saint John Paul II, and in less than a month we will be celebrating the 100th anniversary of his birth. In the light of these events, we strongly encourage our school students to participate in the “Drawing for the Pope” Competition, which aims to commemorate one of the greatest Poles in history. Details of the Competition can be found on the poster below. All competition entries must be sent to the following address: 30 Maryfields Dr, Blair Athol, NSW 2560 by 27/05/2020. All entries will then be sent by post to the competition organizers. We look forward to a great number of competition entries!
Students from the Macarthur Polish Saturday School continue to work hard. Although the school is closed – the project of making Easter palms at home has been completed These stunning Easter palms are the most beautiful testimony to how we as a school community are loyal and dedicated to remembering Polish traditions and customs associated with the celebration of Easter. At the same time, they are an expression of longing for Saturday classes at our Polish Saturday School.
Thank you very much to our beloved students and their parents for the gorgeous photos of the Easter palms that were sent to us last week.
It is amazing how from a tiny spark a hot flame of Love, Joy, Hope and Belonging exploded…
Thank you, Dear Mrs Celinka, for your uplifting initiative. Thanks to these photos for the first time in this extremely difficult year, we’ve actually managed to feel the atmosphere of the upcoming Easter celebrations. The Polish Saturday School in Macarthur wishes everyone a healthy and hope-filled Easter Celebrations 🙂
Playgroup @ our school
With real joy and pleasure I would like to inform you that from the middle of this term a Playgroup for toddlers under the name “Hardworking Bees” has been operating at our school. The Playgroup project is coordinated by Mrs. Kinga Pacione. Every Saturday I have been noticing how much fun and joy both mums and kiddies have together. These meetings have not only social but also educational aspect as well. From an early age, these children get familiarised with the Polish language and the culture and traditions of the country of origin of their parents and grandparents. Only recently I have realized how much we needed a group like this in our school. We strongly invite everyone interested in being part of this wonderful initiative. Please promote news about our Playgroup among your family and friends. I wish with all my heart that our school family will grow bigger and bigger ?
Polish language Class for Adults
With great pleasure and satisfaction I would like to inform you that since last Saturday a Polish language class for adults has been operating at our school. This initiative was first suggested to me by one of our dads – Mr. Kris Wrona. Classes are conducted by Mrs Renatka Bienkowska. Currently we have 4 people who have sign up to be part of this class. I am deeply convinced that this group will grow bigger soon. We strongly invite everyone interested in being part of this wonderful initiative. Please promote news about Polish for adult’s class among your family and friends. I wish with all my heart that our school family will grow bigger and bigger 🙂
Puppet theatre performance
On Saturday, 22/02/2020, students from the oldest class presented to their younger school friends a poem by Jan Brzechwa entitled “On the market stall”. The performance of the poem in the puppet theatre version was prepared by the actor – Mr. Michal Macioch and his mother Cecylia Macioch. Young viewers were delighted with the performance! Congratulations to our great actors and to Michal and his mother for a delightful spectacle they have prepared for us!
Start of the 2020 School Year
On Saturday 08/02/2020 we inaugurated another school year at the Macarthur Polish Saturday School. To my great joy and satisfaction, the school is growing beautifully, which is demonstrated by a large number of new students and their families joining our school community. Despite the rain and bad weather, the atmosphere during the event was really joyful and happy. We started the day at 9:30 with a Holy Mass offered for the Macarthur Polish Saturday School community at Mary Immaculate Catholic Church at Eagle Vale. The Mass was presided over by Father Slawek Plonka – a Polish priest who is the parish priest of a local Australian parish. As the years go by, his Australian parishioners get used to our presence at Saturday Masses for the beginning and ending of each school year which is shown by many nice and warm comments shared with members of our school community. Traditionally, we sang songs in Polish and English with huge enthusiasm. I am very grateful to Michal Macioch and Darek Plust for leading the songs during the Mass and for the beautiful performance of “Barka”. Our school students took an active part in the Holy Mass by reading mass readings and prayers of the faithful. The pre-schoolers carried gifts to the altar. Together with us, the Consul General of the Republic of Poland in Sydney – Dr Monika Konczyk, prayed for God’s blessing for the whole school. She honoured us with her presence on this special day. Thanks to the attendance of Mrs. Consul General, our event was very unique and special. We are very grateful to the Consul General that despite the rainy weather and the great distance, she joined us at our ceremony. I am deeply convinced that the moment when Mrs. Consul presented our new students with their new school shirts, will remain in their memory and in the memory of us all for many years. Mrs. Consul General is an extremely warm and approachable person, and her presence has undoubtedly enriched us all. Among the invited guests, we also welcomed Mr. Adam Gajkowski – President of the NSW Federation of Polish Organisations, who tirelessly supports the activities conducted by our school. We were also happy about the presence of the manager of the Polish Song and Dance Ensemble “Kujawy” – Mrs. Jolanta Zurawski. Our school works very closely with “Kujawy” Ensemble promoting Polish culture, language and traditions of our country of origin. During the organisational meeting, important information was provided to parents regarding school safety regulations. The teachers briefly familiarised the parents with the curriculum in individual classes. During that time, students of our school, under the watchful eye of the Ladies from the Parent Committee, performed artistic works on the subject of “Vacation memories”.
After the official part of the event was over, our school’s teaching staff met for lunch with Mrs. Consul General and other invited guests. The atmosphere of the meeting was extremely warm and friendly. Once again, thank you from the bottom of our hearts to our Dear Consul General for the precious moments spent with us. We are deeply convinced that Polish education in Sydney will develop happily with such a leader.
Celebrating the end of the 2019 School Year
On Saturday, December 7, the end of 2019 school year celebrations were held at the Macarthur Polish Saturday School. We started the day with a Mass celebrated in the Mary Immaculate Catholic Church at Eagle Vale. The Mass was presided over by the priest of the local Australian parish – Father Slawek Plonka. Father Slawek, who is an extremely warm and open person and very respected by his Australian parishioners, has been supporting our school ever since the school was first established in February 2017. During the Mass, we sang several well-known Polish and English religious songs. We are extremely grateful to Father Slawek for his kindness and hope that this cooperation will continue in the future. After the Mass, we went to the Robert Townson Public School, where official end of the school year celebrations were held. We started by reading a congratulatory letter addressed to us by Consul General Monika Konczyk. Mrs. Consul General, who due to the sheer volume of duties could not be present at the ceremony rewarded us with a beautiful letter, which was addressed to teachers, the student community and also, and perhaps above all, to our dear parents.
The next point of the day were the performances presented by students of each class. The first to perform on the stage were our sweet pre-schoolers. They performed the song “They call me poleczka.” It was an extremely charming and sweet presentation 🙂
Then the combined classes of Mrs. Malgosia and Mrs. Bernadka were presenting. The students sang the song “Kuku?eczka”. The last to perform were the students of our oldest class, who, under the watchful eye of Mr. Michal Macioch, presented the puppet theatre, based on the well-known poem by Jan Brzechwa entitled “On the market stall.” Our young artists were rewarded with huge applause, which they undoubtedly deserved not only by the beautiful declamation of the poem, but also with the beautifully made puppets they created themselves. The background to all of the performances was a beautiful Christmas decoration prepared by Mrs. Krysia Morawski, who traditionally enriched the day with a Christmas tree brought from home and a beautifully decorated table. The items displayed on it evoked memories of white, snow and Christmas. It was a visual lesson of Polish traditions and customs related to Christmas celebrations.
The end of the school year is always an opportunity to summarise the year-round work of teachers and students. After the student’s performances, each student was awarded a school certificate. Awards for the best Library user and prizes for exemplary attendance were also given out. In a special way, with a tear in our eyes, but also with undoubted pride we said goodbye to the students of our oldest class. The following girls said goodbye to us: Gabriella Helwani, Julia Koscianska, Malwina Lesniewicz and Anya Bienkowska. We wish our dear graduates all successes in the following years of learning the Polish language.
The day ended with a surprise visit from Santa. How much joy this extraordinary and long-awaited guest brought with him! And the gifts he brought were really wonderful. These were: a ticket to Taronga Zoo for each of our students, a book from the series “I love Poland” entitled: “80 Anniversary of the outbreak of World War II”. Among the gifts was also a toy and something sweet for our little ones.
2019 was a year of beautiful anniversaries and of hard work in classrooms. Both teachers, students and their parents have earned themselves a wonderful summer holiday. Have a good rest everyone and come back to us with a supply of fresh energy and enthusiasm in the new 2020 school year 🙂
Financial support from the “Polish Community” Association
NSW Federation of Community Languages – Annual Dinner
On Saturday, the 23 November 2019, the Annual Dinner of the New South Wales Federation of Community Languages was held. We were extremely impressed by the energy of this event in which, representatives of almost all ethnic schools from all over the state were represented. Congratulations to the President – Mrs. Lucia Johns and the entire Organization Committee on their huge success. We strongly congratulate you for the work and effort involved in the preparation of this celebration, as well as many other events aimed at supporting community language schools in NSW. The following ladies represented our school in this important event: Dominika Smutek and Urszula Ko?cia?ska. On behalf of the ladies present at the Annual Dinner and the entire community of the Macarthur Polish Saturday School, we thank the Federation Committee and all those involved in the preparation of the event for the opportunity to be part of it and wish you further successes in the future!
Celebrating Poland’s Independence Day at our school
Last Saturday, November 9, students and teachers from Macarthur Polish Saturday School celebrated the 101st anniversary of Poland regaining her independence.
As every year around this time, the lessons were aimed at familiarising children with the Polish national symbols such as flag, national colours, national emblem and anthem. These activities were aimed at forming and developing national identity in children who are students of our school. When conducting classes, teachers of individual classes used methods suitable to age and cognitive abilities of a given age group.
Last Saturday both students and teachers were asked to bring to school – souvenirs brought or received from Poland, with which we then decorated tables and made a mini exhibition for everyone to admire. The students from the oldest class had to additionally say a few words about the items they brought and justify why they chose such a souvenir. On the map of Poland purchased by the school last year, students glued tiny flags, marking the place of origin of their families. We also practiced the Polish national anthem, in each of our classes without exception. Class I students, under the guidance of the teacher, arranged educational puzzles, the subject of which was the map of Poland. They liked this game so much that they did it three times in a row – of course, each time they would finish in less and less time. The children were also colouring the Polish national emblem – White Eagle, after they got familiarised with the legend of Lech, Czech and Rus.
At 11.00 we all gathered in the school yard to sing the Polish national anthem. For the needs of the school a huge white and red flag was sewn. Each participant of this event was holding it in his or hers hands while singing the anthem.
More photos in our Photo Gallery.
The Consul’s General award for Julia Koscianska
On Monday, October 28, at the Consulate General of the Republic of Poland in Sydney, the top students from Polish Saturday Schools were awarded prizes for outstanding results in learning the Polish language. Macarthur Polish Saturday School nominated Julia Koscianska from 6th class for this award in the current school year. Julia started learning Polish 6 years ago. I had the joy and the privilege of being her first teacher at Polish school. I remember this quiet, calm, beautiful little girl who has never come to school without completed homework – always prepared, always ready to learn. Together we have learned the first letters from the Polish alphabet, together we have read the first simple texts in Polish. With that pride and satisfaction I looked at Julia’s smiling face when she was receiving her well-deserved award from Mrs. Consul General Monika Konczyk. Moments like this are the most meaningful moments of every teacher’s life and career and give a sense of a job well done. Julia’s success is also, and perhaps above all, the success of her parents, whom we congratulate with all our heart for raising such a wonderful girl. Without your sacrifice, without your hard work, a day like this would never become a reality. Dearest Julia, congratulations once again from our entire school community! We wish you nothing but success in the future!
A session on the best ways to save up money
Last Saturday, on October 26, Mr. Michal Brandt (Senior Financial Planner, APT Wealth Partners), payed us a visit. The main purpose was to give answers to two important questions: “how and why should we save up money?” Mr. Brandt shared with us his deep knowledge and experience in his area of expertise.
During the morning session addressed to parents of our school, Mr. Brandt recalled key points from all financial topics. He presented important nuances that are worth knowing about and whose existence we are often not aware of due to lack of time and extremely busy life style… After the presentation Mr. Brandt was answering specific questions from individual participants. I am deeply convinced that every person present at the presentation has found at least one thing for themselves.
At 11:45 Mr. Brandt met with the students of our school. Several young girls and boys of the Polish Liverpool High School have also accepted the invitation to the presentation. Mr. Brandt, who made his debut as a lecturer for school aged children, proved himself excellent in his new role. He explained to the gathered boys and girls what saving money was about in a very matter-of-fact way. The presentation was interactive – the children would answer Mr. Brandt’s questions, and their answers were written on the white board. We learned that each of us, without exception, must choose each day whether, for example, should we pay bills first or buy a new phone, and how much depends on our financial priorities. Mr. Brandt explained to our pupils how one, bad and reckless decision can get us into serious financial trouble.
After the presentation, the children presented Mr. Brandt with cards they had prepared themselves.
To summarise, it needs to be added that there are priceless things in this world that money can never buy and that there are people ready to help others selflessly – people with a heart open to the needs of other people and hands stretched out to comfort and support. These values ??are priceless, and Mr. Michal Brandt has proved to us that, despite the fact that he is an excellent expert in many areas related to finance, he can at the same time offer his valuable time, enthusiasm and dedication to share his knowledge and experience with others. The only payment he received was the smile of our children and the cards they made themselves with the simplest and at the same time one of the most beautiful words in our Polish language “thank you” 🙂
National Reading at Macarthur Polish Saturday School
Co-financed by the “Freedom and Democracy” Foundation at the Senate of the Republic of Poland as part of the “Supporting Polish Education in the World” initiative.
On Saturday September 19, our school took part in an initiative by the Polish Presidential Couple: The National Reading project. This year, the list of suggested texts for national reading has been enriched by Polish novels, including the following titles:
- Dobra pani – Eliza Orzeszkowa;
- Dym – Maria Konopnicka
- Katarynka – Boleslaw Prus
- Mój ojciec wstepuje do strazaków (ze zbioru: Sanatorium pod Klepsydra) – Bruno Schulz
- Orka – Wladyslaw Stanislaw Reymont
- Rozdzióbia nas kruki, wrony… – Stefan Zeromski
- Sachem – Henryk Sienkiewicz
- Sawa (z cyklu: Pamiatki Soplicy) – Henryk Rzewuski
At 10:30, students from all classes gathered in one of the classrooms, and attentively listened to the texts read to them.
The readers were dancers from “Kujawy” Song and Dance Ensemble. Two young people dressed in national costumes devoted their free time and came to visit our school to present the aforementioned texts to our students. Monika Potaczala and Jakub Kawa read beautifully in Polish to children who, sitting on the carpet, listened to novellas surrounding the readers in a semicircle.
On behalf of myself and the Macarthur Polish School community, I’d like to thank these two wonderful young people for their enthusiasm and time. We wish you, many future successes. We hope you can pay us another visit in the near future.
We also thank the “Freedom and Democracy” Foundation at the Senate of the Republic of Poland for financing this wonderful initiative.
A school excursion to Parramatta Park – tour of the Old Government House
Financed by the ‘Wspolnota Polska’ Association from the resources of the Chancellery of the Senate of the Republic of Poland in the framework of caring for the Polish diaspora and Poles abroad in 2019.
Our Saturday excursion was really fantastic!
First of all, thank you Dear God for the wonderful weather.
Thank you to Dominika for booking tickets for our visit to the Old Government House (I highly recommend visiting this place to all those who could not join us on Saturday) and for booking the shelter, as the location turned out to be a real hit! The playground next door was really fantastic!!! The kids had great fun there!!! Thinking of how well equipped the playground was, even surprised us all!!!
Thank you Basia Bialas together with her husband as well as Hania Beshai for feeding us all to our heart’s content 🙂
The success of this day was not only due to the beautiful weather and excellent organisational skills of our beloved Dominica, but also, that we could together both adults and children spend time talking and having fun. Additionally – visiting Old Government House has allowed us to learn many new and interesting things about the history of white settlement in Australia. Thank you all for your support and presence? I wish you all good rest during the holidays. See you at school on 19/10/2019 🙂
The Polish Language Teachers Conference
A very important event for Polish community education in Australia is the annual Methodological Conference for Polish Language Teachers, which took place last Saturday, 14/9/19 at the Consulate General of the Republic of Poland in Sydney. The conference program was extremely interesting and certainly each of the people present at the Consulate that day was very content with all the workshops in which we had the pleasure to participate. The main speakers were: Mrs. Liliana Sosnowska (ORPEG – Centre for the Development of Polish Education Abroad); Ms Magdalena Debowska (ODN / SWP – Teacher Training Centre / “Polish Community” Association), and Professor Marek Wierzbicki (KUL – Catholic University of Lublin). On this day, the Polish Saturday School in Macarthur was represented by three teachers: Mrs. Ma?gosia Jagodzinska, Mrs. Gosia Lyzczarz-Helwani and Mrs. Bernadeta Kawa. We are extremely grateful to all the organizers, in the forefront with Gosia Vella and Ela Cesarski, and our Dear Hosts – Ladies Consul General Monika Konczyk, Irena Juszczyk and Joanna Sp?ocharska for enabling us to take part in this extremely fruitful meeting. The workshops led by Liliana Sosnowska and Magdalena Debowska were absolutely sensational! The presenters demonstrated many practical games and activities developing language skills, which we will definitely use during classes with students in our classrooms. Once again, thank you to the organizers of this event!
Minister’s Award for Gabriella Helwani
On Monday September 9th 2019, a student of our school – Gabriella Helwani from 6th class, received the 2019 Minister’s Award for Excellence in student achievement for outstanding results in learning the Polish language. Huge congratulations to Gabrysia, her proud parents, and the entire school community. Gabrysia began studying at Polish school at the age of six. I remember very well this beautiful, tiny girl with long, black, braided hair. It was in my class that Gabrysia began her adventure with learning the Polish language. 7 years have passed since then. Gabrysia is growing up to be a beautiful, smart, ambitious girl, not afraid of challenges. I am sure that with such an attitude towards study and work she will be able to achieve all her goals in the future. Once again, congratulations to Gabrysia and her parents. Your success is a great example to follow for many other families where only one parent speaks the Polish language. Gabrysia speaks fluently in both languages, which is undoubtedly a credit to you. Gabrysia – you are a great showcase of our school and we are all very happy with your well-deserved success!
80th Anniversary of the outbreak of World War II
Dear Michal, Cecylia and you Dear students of our school!
Thank you for a beautiful performance. It is difficult to find words describing this event – thanks to you we had the opportunity to experience something really special! Let the tears of emotion that flow from the eyes of those who had the opportunity and the privilege of being part of this spectacle be a testimony to how much the scenes you recalled fell into the hearts of viewers. A great performance! Depth of experience! A lot of emotions! Thank you once again for all your efforts you put into preparation of this exceptional spectacle! I strongly encourage everyone to read the article by Marianna Lacek OAM, who amazingly captured the extraordinary atmosphere of this performance. The article entitled “I believe in Poland so much, Mother” is available on the websites of „Puls Polonia” and „Bumerang Polski”.
A Missionary at our School
On Saturday June 15, a group of very interesting guests, including Mr. Andrzej Stalonczyk, the Head of the Pastoral Council at the Minto parish, visited our School. Mr. Stalonczyk brought with him, Father Krzysztof Stachowiak, a Missionary from the Holy Family Fathers who has been working in Papua New Guinea for the past 15 years. Father Krzysztof, who is an extremely charismatic and humble person, met with our children, and in a very pictorial and warm way, described to us the realities of his work in Papua New Guinea.Children and adults listened with great attention to Father Krzysztof, describing the realities of his Missionary work. It is hard to believe that living standards in a country that is geographically so close to Australia, differ radically from the standards of living on our Continent. It was a great lesson for us all, to appreciate things that we take for granted every day. We are very grateful that, despite his busy schedule, Father Krzysztof found time to meet with our school students.
A very successful workshop
On Saturday, June 29, a workshop with Mr. Krzysztof Bakalarz – Polish psychologist, psychotherapist and trainer took place at our school. During the meeting Mr. Bakalarz in an extremely professional manner answered three important questions:
- Can stress be beneficial for us?
- Is it possible to avoid it, or is it better to learn to deal with it?
- What to do when nothing works and we feel worse and worse?
Despite the fact that the workshop continued for over two and a half hours, all those who participated in it agreed that the time had passed so quickly. I could hear comments like: “I wish my sister was here”, “I wish I had taken my daughter with me”, “I have learnt so many interesting things today”, “great workshop”, “what a fantastic idea”, “will there be more workshops like this one?”
The seminar undoubtedly enriched the people who participated in it. We hope to continue these workshops in the future. We are extremely grateful to Mr. Bakalarz for preparing and conducting it.
Krzysztof Bakalarz, received a master’s degree in psychology at the University of Adam Mickiewicz in Poland. Over the years he gained international experience as a trainer and speaker working with both individuals, companies and organizations.
For more information, call 0451 220 869 or visit www.polski-psycholog.com
The most beautiful day of the year!
“Project co-financed within the framework of Polonia funds of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Poland”
June 1 is by far the most beautiful and joyful day of the year – the day when in a special way, we realize what a great joy and hope for the world, our children are. Could you imagine a world without children? What would it be like? I definitely do not want to live in such a world. I am glad that I was raised and grew up in a country where children were celebrated each year. It is a very special day in which we, adults looking at our own children, try to discover the child within us. In my opinion days like “Kids Day” should be celebrated more than once a year.
On Saturday June 1, together with children from the Song and Dance Ensemble “Kujawy”, we celebrated “Children’s Day” at our school. Instead of our usual routine, the students had the opportunity to take part in sports and dance games under the watchful eye of Mr. Michal Macioch. From 9:30am to 11:00am, the school yard was full of childish uproar, laughter and shouts of joy, all mixed up cheerful music. Michal began with a musical warm-up. Children were stretched, jumped and participated in all the physical activities which, by their very nature, define being a child. Children are very often tireless in their need for physical activity and movement. After the warm-up, it was time for the sports competition. The participants were divided into two groups, they rushed to the goal in the races, ran with the ball back and forth, ran with the ball over their heads and between their legs and performed many other fun and happy sport activities. It was a really happy, healthy and noisy time, just as it should be during an event such as “Kid’s Day”. At eleven o’clock, Paul the Magician appeared out of nowhere, and entertained not only our little ones, but also parents and teachers who could not refuse themselves the pleasure of meeting this mysterious visitor. Paul the Magician absolutely charmed, or rather “enchanted”, everyone watching his amazing magical performance. I looked at the laughing and happy faces of our children. It was joy and happiness in the purest form … Moments like this give life its true meaning. After the show, both children and adults thanked the Magician for his performance with thunderous applause. I allowed myself to notice, that the work he is doing, is one of the most joyful jobs you can imagine. The constant laughter and joy of children are always present while he works. After this highlight of the day, the children enjoyed a well-deserved meal prepared by our wonderful parents. But wait a minute … I almost forgot to mention. At the end of the day, the children did not go home empty handed. The children were given a gift prepared by one of our Mothers, Mrs. Dominika Smutek, President of the Parental Committee. How much fun did the kids have while they were opened their packages!
It is impossible to mention here all those who supported me in the work on the organization of this event. However, I need to mention and honour several people. I would very much like to thank the Consul General, Mrs. Irena Juszczyk and Mrs. Vice-Consul, Joanna Splocharska, for their help in co-financing the project”Kid’s Day“at our school as part of the Polish Community funds of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Poland. Thank you to Lucyna and Wieslaw Pazdzior, whose generous hearts have opened, once again, for us. Thank you very much on behalf of myself and the whole school, for the delicious sausages that you fed our children, parents and teachers last Saturday. There were enough sausages for everyone. Not one sausage was left. I wish that you could see the enthusiasm, with which the kids were eating your sausages. Once again from the bottom of my heart, A HUGE THANK YOU!
In conclusion – thank you all for everything! It is difficult to express and describe in a few clumsy words, how grateful I am to you, dear Parents for your support and work on the preparation of this day. Let the payment be the smile and joy of the children that benefitted from all the joys of this special day. To sum it up, I would like quote Pope John Paul II “children are the spring of the family and society, the hope that is still flourishing, and the future that is constantly opening.”
Scoutmaster’s Szupryczynski Award for Anya Bienkowska
On Saturday 4 May, during the occasion of the Anniversary of the Constitution of May 3 at the Polish Club in Ashfield, one of our students, Anya Bienkowska (class VI) received the Scoutmaster’s Witold Szupryczynski Award. This award is given to children and young people of the Polish community who proudly affirm their Polish roots by learning Polish language and participating actively in promoting Polish culture on Australian soil. Anya is a wonderful student, who approaches learning with great enthusiasm and responsibility. Congratulations to Anya and her proud parents and grandparents! Anya – you are the pride and joy of our school community! We wish you success in the next years of learning Polish!
On Saturday, 6 April 2019, the Polish Saturday School in Macarthur held an Easter assembly, the aim of which was to present rich and colourful traditions and customs associated with the celebration of Easter. As usual, the weather was good for us. In the morning we were greeted by beautiful, smiling autumn sunshine.
We started the day with lessons in individual classes. Of course, Easter was the subject for the day in all age groups. The teachers brought with them lots of props, such as: Easter palms, decorated Easter tablecloths, baskets where you could find salt, eggs, bread, sausage, lambs made of sugar – all those products that we bring to church on Holy Saturday for blessing. Together with the children, we put all items in a basket lined with a beautiful white serviette. Children took turns naming all the products. There were also art classes: children made baskets from a previously prepared template, decorated eggs that magically turned into beautiful, colourful and happy Easter eggs. Class II and III, under the watchful eye of Mrs. Malgosia Jagodzinska, prepared a huge Easter egg for everyone to admire. Look and see for yourself – isn’t it great ?!
At 11:30 we started the official Easter celebrations. I was happy to watch on one side: the parents, grandparents and friends of our school gathered on that day, and on the other side, a group of forty beautifully and festively dressed students of our school. The children looked really colourful and cheerful. After a short welcome to all guests who came to our ceremony – it was time for children to perform. We started with the singing of our school song, which in itself gives both performers and listeners a lot of positive energy each time. Then, students from the 5th and 6th class presented Polish Easter traditions and customs. In words, they painted pictures of Easter palms, an Easter baskets, a Sunday breakfast and a Smingus-Dyngus on Easter Monday. These verbal images were intertwined with songs. The first of them was entitled “Skacze droga zajac” and the second “Ida dzieci ze swieconym”. The next performers were class II and III students who used their gigantic Easter egg-shaped cardboard, which they prepared themselves. The main character of their performance was of course … an Easter egg. Then we sang together another song titled „Pisanki”. After class II and III, class “0” and “I” students appeared on the stage. Little performers were reciting a happy rhyme titled “I tell you, I tell you – what I have with this hare”. The children delighted the listeners not only with the fact that they learned their texts beautifully, but also with their children’s joy and smile painted on their small faces.
The last point of the program was the dancing of all children to the rhythm of the lively and cheerful song “Miala baba koguta.”
Ah – how much joy was there! Not only children danced, but also teachers along with them. It was an extremely colourful and energetic dance that gave all of us a lot of positive energy and joy. The originator of the dance part of the performance was the teacher of our oldest class, Mrs. Grazyna Pakulska, whom I would like to thank not only for watching over the whole program, but additionally with her extremely valuable ideas, she undoubtedly enriched our assembly.
At this point, I can not omit a very important element, which was a beautifully decorated Easter table. It was an extremely important component and at the same time the background for all performances. For the third time, Mrs. Krysia Morawski agreed to prepare it for us. The beautifully decorated Easter table was for children and all of us gathered this day a lesson in itself: a lesson of rich Polish traditions and customs associated with the celebration of Easter. I am deeply convinced that the memories and images of the Easter table will be deeply remembered by our pupils.
After the performances, it was time for the competitions. The first of these was to peel and eat the eggs as quickly as possible. The winner was the routine and experience as the team that included grandmother, grandfather and granddaughter came first. Grandma took no time to peel an egg, and a grandfather ate it in the blink of an eye. In the next competition, 3 racing teams were holding an egg throughout the length of the room as follows: the youngest participant (child) carried an egg on a large tablespoon, mum carried an egg on a tiny teaspoon, and dad carried an egg on a large tablespoon that he kept in his mouth. There were a lot of happiness, joy and applause, and as a reward all participants of the competition received a chocolate egg.
The last point of the program was refreshments prepared by our irreplaceable mothers from the Parental Committee. There was of course coffee, tea and a lot of delicious cakes. I am very grateful to ladies Dominika Smutek, Agnieszka Godden, Agatka Pochanke and Hania Beshai for their great attitude and help. It was also a time for a meeting, a conversation – time for Easter wishes.
The atmosphere of the meeting was filled with warmth and kindness. Thank you very much to our dear sponsors: Marysia and Marek Strzemkowski and Lucyna and Wieslaw Pazdzior for funding the lottery prizes.
Summing up, after my favourite poet—Father Jan Twardowski I would like to wish “each and every one in turn Easter joy, which may last despite suffering, truly Christian joy, which lasts even when they are overwhelmed – whether small or big – only human nights.”
Please see our Photo Gallery.
Annual State Community Language Teachers Conference & Professional Development Training Day
On Saturday, April 13, an annual Conference for Ethnic Language Teachers in New South Wales took place. That day, together with five other teachers, I once again had the pleasure of representing our school in this extremely important event for ethnic schools. For years I have been extremely impressed with the momentum with which the Conference is organized. The main goal of the Conference is to improve the qualifications of ethnic language teachers. Together with more than 750 people present that day at, I had the opportunity to take part in a number of different lectures and workshops. The range and level of training available to participants each year is consistently at a very high level. Congratulations to the entire Organizing Committee for your great success. Thanks to their hard work, the family of ethnic schools, to which we also belong, flourishes and develops like never before. We are extremely impressed and with the enormity of the work and effort put into preparing this and many other events to support ethnic schools in New South Wales. On behalf of the Ladies present at the Conference and the entire community of the Polish Saturday School in Macarthur, we would like to thank the Organizing Committee for the opportunity to be a part of this event and wish you further successes in the future!
Legal and financial presentation @ White Eagle Hall in Cabramatta
On Saturday 30 March 2019 a financial and legal presentation took place in the White Eagle Hall in Cabramatta. The first such presentation took place on November 26 last year in the building of the Consulate General of the Republic of Poland in Sydney. The initiator of the meeting was Mrs. Vice-Consul Joanna Splocharska. Mrs. Vice-Consul, who is an extremely energetic person, and at the same time nice, cordial and full of innovative ideas in a noticeable way animates the Polonia Community in Sydney. The presentation, whose theme was: “Pension planning and inheritance law – answers to your questions” was prepared and entirely carried out by experts in their fields – Mr. Michal Brandt and Mr. Rafal Rogusz.
Mr. Michal Brandt (Senior Financial Planner – APT Wealth Partners) has been working in the financial services industry for 10 years. He is passionate about the complexity of the financial world and is enthusiastic about solving the secrets of the world of economics for the real good of his clients. Mr. Brandt skilfully and steadily leads his clients to achieve their financial goals. What’s more – he believes that listening and understanding the needs of customers is the most important factor on which skilful financial advice is based. The specialty of Mr. Brandt is planning retirement and building an investment portfolio.
The second speaker was a lawyer, Mr. Rafal Rogusz, from the law firm Benefit Legal Lawyers. This company is a harmonious team of experienced specialists in the field of law and commerce. The main priority of Benefit Legal Lawyers is high-quality cooperation with the client in order to achieve the best results favourable to the client. The company operates based on the “no win – no fees” principle.
Benefit Legal Lawyers has many years of experience in:
- Claims for damages,
- Commercial leasing,
- Matters relating to family law,
- Inheritance law,
- Civil proceedings,
- Claims for negligence,
- Business transactions.
The whole meeting was conducted in a nice and family atmosphere. During the break, the audience gathered in the room had the opportunity to make coffee or tea and buy donuts and other tasty baked goods from the Copernicus Bakery. The proceeds from the sale were entirely allocated for the needs of the Polish Saturday School in Macarthur.
Summing up, I would like to once again express the words of gratitude to the initiator of these meetings – Mrs. Vice-Consul Joanna Splocharska and both Speakers: Mr. Michal Brandt and Mr. Rafal Rogusz, who have dedicated their free weekend time to the good of the Polish community. It is impossible not to mention here our host – the Polish Association in Cabramatta. From the first moment, Mrs. Krystyna Cyron supported our initiative and thanks to the openness of her great heart, we were able to use the White Eagle Room free of charge. I also thank dear mums from our school, without whom the meeting at Cabramatta could not take place and all the listeners present that day.
Sausage sizzle @ Gregory Hills Bunnings
On the seventh of April – on a beautiful, sunny, autumn morning, several enthusiasts from the Macarthur Polish Saturday School met near the entrance to Gregory Hills Bunnings to sell sausages, drinks and donuts, and thereby collect valuable funds for the school. From the early hours of the morning, our dear parents were busy organizing the stand: they set tables, fried sausages and onions, cut rolls, put drinks into ESKYs filled with ice, prepared donuts and buns for sale. Our goal for the day was to sell all of these products. It took many hands to work. Thanks to the diligence and generosity of Dear Ladies from the Parents’ Committee: Dominika Smutek, Agnieszka Godden and Hani Beshai, who enthusiastically took care of the organization of this event – we had enough willing hands to help throughout the whole long day. Everyone offered as much time as he could – some came for an hour, others for two or three, and still others were there throughout the whole day. This type of task can not be done and carried out alone – it needed well-coordinated team of parents. Beloved – I am absolutely impressed by your diligence, generosity, professionalism and completely unique and top-shelf cooperation in the team. Not only we were as usual able to earn valuable funds for the school – additionally we all have had cheerful and super joyful day which is demonstrated by the attached photos.
Thank you all for everything – I know how much effort you put in to make this day to be a successful one. I wish you a lot of good rest during the holidays 🙂
The NSW Premier’s Harmony Dinner 2019
On March 21st this year, we will be celebrating Multicultural Day in Australia. The event is a great celebration in which all cultures can express in a special way the pride and joy of who they are and where they come from. Despite the fact that we come from almost every corner of the world, it connects us to live in this unique place, where different cultures, languages, traditions and religions live side by side in harmony and respect. On Thursday 28 of February 2019 four Ladies from our school: Agnieszka Godden, Urszula Koscianska, Malgorzata Helwani and Hanna Beshai represented our school community at Harmony Dinner with the NSW Premier Mrs Gladys Berejiklian.
Welcome Preschoolers! 🙂
When it comes to numbers no other class group is better then our Preschool Group. Our preschoolers have defeated the numbers of all other class squads! Bravo Toddlers! We welcome you with joy! You are the future of our school 🙂 See Photo Gallery for more photos 🙂
Start of the 2019 School Year
On Saturday, 9/2/19, we started another year of work at Macarthur Polish Saturday School.
Traditionally, the inauguration of the new school year took place at Mary Immaculate Church in Eagle Vale during the Mass celebrated for the students of our school. The Holy Mass was presided over by the parish priest – Father Slawek Ponka, who together with us sang in the Polish and English language the favorite song of our holy Pope John Paul II titled “Barka”. The students of our school took an active part in the Holy Mass. Together with the local parish, we prayed for God’s blessing and protection of the Mother of God for the whole year of education for students, teachers and parents.
After the Mass, the organizational meeting began, during which important information about the safety rules at the school as well as the curriculum in individual age groups were provided. Coordinator of the school – Mrs. Bernadeta Kawa welcomed the new students and their families with joy and introduced them into the rules of the school’s work.
In the meantime, our students under the supervision of Gosia Helwani, Urszula Koscianska and Michal Macioch, created beautiful artwork. The theme of which was the memories of past holidays. Our little artists showed not only artistic talent, but also great ingenuity. Take a look at the results of their work and judge it for yourselves 🙂
Methodological workshops for teachers
A very important event for the Polish education in Australia were free of charge methodological workshops for teachers of Polish as a second / foreign language. The workshops took place on Saturday 9/2/19 in the building of the Consulate of the Republic of Poland in Sydney. These trainings were conducted by Mrs. Irena Stempek, one of the best-selling authors in Europe and America of series of textbooks “POLISH step by step – junior”. The Polish Saturday School in Macarthur was represented by five teachers on that day. We are very grateful to all the organizers Mrs. Marianna Lacek and Mrs. Gosia Vella and to our dear Consul Irena Juszczyk and Joanna Splocharska for allowing us to take part in this extremely fruitful meeting. Workshops led by Mrs. Iwona Stempek and Mr. Tomasz Stempek were absolutely sensational! The presenters have demonstrated many practical games and activities that develop language skills, which we will certainly use during classes with our students. For the school’s needs, several sets of this extremely valuable book were purchased, and thanks to the Saturday workshops we have gained the necessary knowledge to make the best use of them during lessons with students. Once again, we thank the organizers of this event!