From the Dean of Christian Culture

Engagement…With Questions

Who loves playing the game called “Who Am I”?

Let’s play a quick round.

Who Am I?

I was born in the city of Barry in Wales, UK, on 29th September 1961. I migrated to Australia with my family in 1966, settling in Adelaide. I was educated at Unley High School before moving to Melbourne in 1982 to study at The University of Melbourne. I graduated from the University of Melbourne in 1986 with a Bachelor of Arts and a Bachelor of Law. I joined law firm Slater and Gordon in 1987 to work in the area of Industrial Law. I was elected to the House of Representatives in the seat of Lalor in Victoria in The Federal Election of 1998. I held various Shadow Cabinet portfolios between 2001 and 2006 before becoming The Deputy Prime Minister after the 2007 Federal Election. I stepped into my new role on 24th June 2010 becoming the first woman in the history of our nation to hold the office of Prime Minister. I was the 27th Prime Minister of Australia. I am…..The Honourable Julia Gillard MP.

Shall we play one more round?

Who Am I?

Born on 6th August 1951, I am an Australian television personality and musician, and I am a triple Gold Logie award-winner.

In more recent years I was honoured with the awarding of a Medal of the Order of Australia, and with the release of a series of postage stamps featuring my portrait, but it all began in 1971 when I was asked to present an afternoon children’s program called Cartoon Corner. Over the past six decades I have hosted and produced television programs such as New Faces, Blankety Blanks, Family Feud, and Dancing with the Stars – but my rise to national fame originally came because of my long-running role as host of Hey Hey Its Saturday. I am ….. Daryl Somers.

Why did we do that? Why did I choose to ask you to play this game?

I think this little exercise demonstrates a clear fact for us; that most people love asking and answering questions. We have a deep love and hunger for knowledge, information and learning.

The desire to ask questions and find answers is something we seem to be born to do. Anyone who has children will remember little babies reaching out to touch and taste everything around them – and then we watch as toddlers learning to talk begin to form seemingly never-ending questions, often as short as the well-known “But Why?”

Questions and answers are fantastic! We should never stop asking questions and finding answers because it is how we learn and grow – the thirst for knowledge is the foundation not only of academic learning but also of new discoveries, initiatives and creativity.

So many questions like, “How do you make that paper aeroplane fly just that bit further?”“Why is the moon that shape and colour?” … (and any other one of a million or more questions you might think of)…help us to challenge the current status quo and push further out into the territory of the unknown.

This search for knowledge is Biblical. In Matthew 7 we read the account of Jesus teaching His Disciples and the crowd with a message which has since become known as “The Sermon on the Mount”, in which He addressed a wide range of topics including Love, Money, Generosity, Family, Prayer, Judgement and Worry. In the middle of this message, in Matthew 7: 7 Jesus says this:

Ask and it will be given to you, seek and you will find, knock and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives, he who seeks finds, and to him who knocks the door will be opened.”

Ask, seek and knock – Jesus was encouraging and teaching people to search for answers and to look for truth and understanding.

With the right motivation and a genuine heart, we can discover the answers to so many as yet unanswered questions. Our aim is not to derive personal benefit from the information gained, but rather to utilise the learning to assist us as we give back to the community. In this situation our language will not be “I want” but “I wonder”; not “I must have” but “I am interested in”; not “give it to me now” but “teach me please”; and not “tell me now” but “can I ask please?”

Life is a wonderful journey, and we are designed to ask questions in order to discover answers – questions about all things; matters scientific and matters faith-based, matters physical, emotional and spiritual. There is still so much truth for us all to learn, and we should be encouraged to continue asking questions of each other, of our learned leaders and teachers, and, most importantly of God Himself.

Perhaps 2022 can provide the opportunity for you to become engaged or re-engaged with the joy and delight of asking questions. As a community at the beginning of a new year we have focused our thinking on engagement; the notion of opening up possibilities created through connecting, preparing, committing, and building relationships. Our journey so far has taught us that engagement increases opportunity, engagement releases strategy, and engagement delivers fruitfulness, so our focus now, both individually and corporately, is fixed on discovering areas in which we could engage or re-engage.

Maybe for some of us that focus of engagement could be placed on the concept of asking questions – with a view to learning and growing; and ultimately being able to make a positive contribution to the lives of others.

Bless you all.



Our Christian Calendar

In the Christian calendar we are just about to head into the season of Lent which is the period of 40 days which comes before Easter. Beginning on Ash Wednesday, Lent is a season of giving things up, reflection and preparation before the celebrations of Easter. Shrove Tuesday is the day before Lent starts and a day of celebration as the last chance to feast before Lent begins. Shrove Tuesday is sometimes called Pancake Day after the fried batter recipe traditionally eaten on this day – and at Junior School next Tuesday, we will indeed celebrate by enjoying pancakes.

Shrove Tuesday itself gets its name from the ritual of ‘shriving’ which is traditionally where a person confesses their sins and receives absolution for them. When a person receives absolution for their sins, they are forgiven for them and released from the guilt and pain that they have caused them.

On Shrove Tuesday next week our student leaders will be involved in serving pancakes (with butter or jam or both) to each of our Homerooms. A special thank-you to Mrs Kate O’Halloran who is cooking 350 pancakes for our students!!!

So Shrove Tuesday is the last chance to indulge yourself, and to use up the foods that aren’t allowed in Lent. Is there a food that you might be giving up for Lent?

What’s Happening at Junior School

Week 5, Monday Feb 28:
Monday February 28 – Emergency & Lockdown Drills
Tuesday March 1 – Shrove Tuesday Pancake Day
Friday March 4 – Assembly, 4R Class Item

Week 6, Monday March 7:

Thursday March 10 – Beach Prep (PB, PG, PM, PR)

Week 7, Monday March 14:
Monday March 14 – Public Holiday (Labour Day – No School)
Tuesday March 15 – Student Learning Conferences (details to follow)
Wednesday March 16 – Preps attend school in lieu of Public Holiday
Thursday March 17 – Student Learning Conferences (details to follow)

Year 1 Integrated Studies: We are Family

As part of our Integrated Studies topic this term of ‘We are Family’, the children have been exploring the qualities unique to each of their families. They have been provided with the opportunity to share their observations and findings through a range of activities, such as drawing pictures, completing posters, and recording their information through thinking routines.

This week the children were able to plan and design a family crest. After sharing their ideas and special memories, the students set about illustrating pictures that represented their families, including their homes, special places or holidays, pets, favourite toys, and celebrations. The children thought carefully about their pictures and included great details.

As we continue our learning about this topic, the students will be encouraged to investigate how families and the community around us have changed over time. We will also be looking at how our Junior School surroundings have been re-organised and altered over the last 25 years. For instance, did you know that the Library was once where the Prep R classroom is now and that the Art Room was once where we now have the 4G classroom?

Year 3 Engineers

During our S.T.E.A.M sessions this week, the Year 3 students began designing and constructing a ‘hands free’ conveyor belt that will transport a box of chocolates for a distance of 2 metres. This task incorporates a range of topics that we are currently studying in class such as our class novel for this term, ‘Charlie and the Chocolate Factory’, and length in Maths.

In the planning phase the students needed to consider and incorporate into their design the elements that they would need to include from an engineering perspective. Their structure needed to be able to move an object for a distance of 2 metres without directly touching it, so they had to consider the materials they would need to build their conveyor belt and how they would get it to move.

In the construction phase, students brought in items from home that could be used as well as using some of our school resources. Once the design had been approved they continued with the construction phase working in small teams across the Year 3 cohort.

The students will be given the opportunity next week to present and then test their conveyor belt to the class, explaining the significance and importance of each aspect of their design and their thinking throughout the process.

The students were extremely engaged in the activity, which fostered teamwork and the opportunity to explore social friendships further, whilst allowing them consolidate their understandings of how things work from a mechanical perspective.

Year 4 Family Device Information Night

A huge thank you to all the Year 4 parents and students who joined us via Teams on Wednesday night for our Device Information Session. The amazing Year 4 staff delivered a comprehensive presentation about how devices are used to support learning within the Year 4 context, programs and platforms that are utilised during the year, and how parents can share in the digital learning of their children.

Mr Brendan Vanderkley, Director of Digital Learning at CCG, also attended and gave very relevant and practical information for families about platforms used College-wide. He addressed the importance of students developing digital literacy skills that would be consolidated and supported as students move from Year 4 into higher grades at Christian College. An excellent resource for families is the College Parent Cyber Safety Hub (see article below).

This can be found within the Parent Portal and has information on digital safety and supporting our students navigate this new landscape. I encourage you to check out this space, as it has lots of helpful information including game reviews and a parent advice section.

Health, PE and Sport at Junior School

Term 1 provides lots of opportunities for students on a sporting front. From now until the early weeks of Term 2, students from Junior School are encouraged to participate in swimming (Year 3 and 4), athletics (Year 4) and cross country (Prep – Year 4) carnivals. Our community also looks forward to the Mother’s Day Tabloid Sports.

Aside from these events, Year 4 have commenced their swimming program on Friday afternoons at Middle School. Years 1 – 3 students will have the opportunity to swim later in the year. Some Year 4 students have started participating in a run club before school on Fridays and many more are welcome. Year 3 students have commenced a Sport program on Wednesday afternoons for Term 1.

Students in Prep to Year 2 have a focus on developing their fundamental motor skills. In Term 1 students observe, learn and attempt skills such as running, leaping and vertical jump. In Term 2 the focus is on throwing, catching and kicking. Preps will also partake in the Perceptual Motor Program (PMP), which is great for the development skills.

At the Year 3 and 4 levels, students use these skills in sport-specific programs, commence learning rules and start to learn ‘game sense’ approaches. Year 3 students are completing a cricket skills unit as well as athletics events and Year 4 T-Ball and athletics.

All students complete work on various health topics focusing on how they develop as individuals and their relationships, healthy eating, benefits of exercising and personal safety.

I hope your child has a positive and productive year in the HPE and Sport program at Junior School.

The Benefits of Origami

Children in the younger years have often been introduced to Japanese through song, drawing and craft as a way of including all students regardless of literacy or linguistic skills. It never ceases to amaze me how quickly young children embrace unfamiliar concepts and just absorb new information like little sponges. The main form of craft we do is origami. We make functional items like little pockets to take information home and will be making decorative items such as the Hina dolls to celebrate the Japanese festival Hinamatsuri.
Origami has so many cognitive and physical benefits for children and adults. It improves fine motor skills and hand eye coordination. It provides the cognitive challenge of listening and following sequential instructions and stimulates the motor and visual areas of the brain and 3D comprehension and imaging.
But the most important benefit that origami can provide a child is the pride and satisfaction they get from transforming a piece of paper into a new and interesting creation. Origami encourages the children to collaborate, communicate and be creative. These are key 21st century skills for our children to be developing as these are the skills they will need to flourish in the future. Watching the children observe, apply and share skills with their peers is just one of the magical things that happen on a daily basis in a Prep classroom. You can never tell which student will become the expert origami sensei and start taking over the class!
I encourage you to try making some origami with your children but prepare yourself to be the student not the Sensei! We have lots of paper and instructions available so please come and see me in the beautiful Japanese room at Junior School.

Computer Club

Clubs are well and truly up and running here at Junior School. It is my pleasure to offer the children of Junior School a chance to visit the Computer Lab on a Wednesday at lunchtime. This is particularly an exciting time for the Year 4 students to use their devices to explore the functions and apps available to them.

Each week we discuss using the devices in a responsible and mature fashion ensuring we are only using applications that are appropriate for school. We have been able to install Minecraft Education on all the devices in the lab, which is a real favourite for many of the children.

Here is what some of the children had to say about Computer Club thus far:

I think that Computer Club is really fun as I get to play with my friends. – Maya Yr 3

‘I like playing on the computer with my friends and having a break from being inside.’ – Remi Yr 3

‘I love on Minecraft how you can join worlds and experience what it is like out in nature.’- Seyara Yr 4

‘I am using Minecraft to build a home under the ground’- Myles Yr 3

‘I like coming in here and being able to use my own device to go on 3D paint.’- Hamna Yr 4

‘I like coming in here with a couple of my friends and exploring the world of Minecraft.’ – Ingrid Yr 4 

Everyone is welcome to come to Computer Club whenever they like, It’s on every Wednesday


Have you Visited our Online Safety Hub for Parents?

Looking for support to navigate the digital world with your young person at home? Christian College parents are encouraged to visit and explore our new Online Safety Hub especially for parents. This comes as one facet of our new Cyber Safe Schools Program, which we are implementing this year in partnership with Linewize and Family Zone to better support our community and students.

Parents and carers, if you have not yet visited this wonderful new resource, you can access it from the tile in SEQTA Engage or via the link below.

Christian College Parent Online Safety Hub

I expect you’ll find the time taken to do so well worthwhile.



Christian College Foundation

Join the Chair of the Foundation Board for lunch as we celebrate the significance of Easter and learn more about the work of the Foundation.

All funds raised from this event will be allocated to our Scholarship Fund supporting current students who need financial assistance.

Book online today at www.ccgfoundation.org.au/chairslunch

For all enquiries, please contact Jennifer Freind via j.freind@ccg.vic.edu.au.

Jennifer Freind,

Foundation Manager

Enjoy a Musical Afternoon With the GSO!

We are excited to announce that the Geelong Symphony Orchestra is now ‘at home’ rehearsing in the new RW Gibson Centre for Music Performance at the Senior Campus.

Each year this fine orchestra presents superb and varied programs of beautiful music in Costa Hall. The first Costa Hall concert is at 3pm on Saturday March 5th and it provides a great opportunity for families to experience the exhilaration of a full symphony orchestra on a concert hall stage. Many of our College Music Faculty and CCG graduates perform in the orchestra.

Titled ‘Vienna – City of Dreams’, this superb live concert features violin soloist Emily Su and highlights music from the golden era of Vienna – favourite songs, waltzes and orchestral showpieces from Johann Strauss II, Franz Lehar, Brahms and Puccini, including the well-known melodies of Blue Danube Waltz, Overture to Die Fledermaus and Hungarian Dance no 5.

In recognition of the College’s Community Partnership with GSO, CCG families and staff are able to purchase concert tickets at a reduced price using the code CCGCOMMUNITY. Ticket prices for CCG Community are:-

  • Adults $40 (reduced from $55)
  • Students under 20 years $20
  • Children 12 Years and Under are free.

Tickets can be purchased on the Geelong Arts Centre website.

Fiona Gardner

Director of Teaching and Learning – Music

Update to Christian College’s Online Uniform Shop

Over the coming weeks, we are updating our Online Uniform Shop to include our new wardrobe items. We expect this to be complete by the first term holidays.

There will also be some other updates made to rectify some of the teething issues we have experienced with locating items in the online shop directories since launching our new website in Term 4 last year.

Please check coming issues of The Vine and our social media platforms for notification about when the update is completed. You can access the online uniform shop here.



A MYTERN Thought for the Week

Sometimes we spend so much time on busy roads that we start to feel uncomfortable when we drive alone. 

Take a moment today to be still and silent. Look at and listen to the nature around you. Feel that connection.

 Know that you are never really alone 😊

Discover more about MYTERN here.