From The Principal
The new term has commenced with much excitement and a sense of something approaching normality for schools. Moving around the College has given me an opportunity to witness energy and a positive atmosphere that has, to some degree, been missing in all of our lives since the emergence of the pandemic early in 2020.
I feel the lifting of most of the restrictions that we have worked under creates more occasions for us to reconnect as a community, particularly through the resumption of some programs we have not been able to conduct. An example of this is the current ‘Our World’ trip to Central Australia.
The term commenced with our staff from all campuses gathering together to worship God and share fellowship in the same space. It was such a blessing to sing, pray and share communion together, and to hear an inspiring message from Middle School Chaplain, Mia Kafieris.
The service was followed by an exceptional workshop conducted by Simon McCormick from ‘Australians Together’. This session engaged us in reflective personal conversation about supporting our students and expanding our teaching practices to enable greater awareness and understanding of First Nations Peoples.
As we returned from the term break, I shared with the staff some observations I had made about the current patterns of student behaviour, particularly concerning the way students speak to staff, follow expectations, and adhere to uniform requirements. There has been a level of grace and understanding for our students throughout the COVID–19 challenges, and in transitioning back to school. However, it is time for us as a community to restore the standard of expectations for our students that have always been a hallmark of our College.
Closely aligned with this concern are unfortunate examples of communication – both verbal and written – toward our staff that is aggressive and disrespectful, and comes from a small number of our families. In meeting with Principals from other schools, it is apparent that this is a common experience in many schools post the period of COVID-19 disruption. It is my heartfelt and prayerful request that our community makes a concerted effort to ensure that interactions within our community are respectful at all times. A positive working relationship and a strong partnership between families and the College is vital for our students to fully benefit from the learning and the wider experiences offered through our school.
The term commenced for our students with gatherings to commemorate ANZAC Day. Students respectfully participated in hearing about the roles played by Chaplains in wartime. Thank you to those who planned and led these services, as well as those who read, prayed, sang and played.
Schools across our nation are experiencing significant challenges with young people vaping. Unfortunately, our College has not been exempt from this behaviour, and we are working hard to educate our students regarding the risks and health concerns associated with these devices. Our approach involves awareness and education as well as taking appropriate measures to ensure a level of accountability, and to provide a duty of care. This is something that requires the cooperation of a whole community to support our young people and to protect them against high-level risk-taking.
I am very pleased that we have commenced rolling out the ‘Linewize’ resource to protect and educate our students in the online world and the digital space. Previous editions of The Vine have contained details of what Linewize is and how it assists us to keep our students safe from distractions when they are in cyberspace. Further information will be shared with families and students in the coming weeks, and we are planning an evening for parents and students to gather and learn more about our approach to educating students about navigating the digital world.
This week and next week we have been opening up our campuses to allow prospective families to see our College at work. We have not manufactured showcase programs – our preference is to present an authentic experience of a typical day at Christian College. We have been pleased with the level of interest and attendance, and feel delighted to be able to share the wonderful features of our College with our visitors. A feature of my conversations with visitors was that many reported they visited us as a result of hearing positive feedback from our families. I am most grateful to those who encourage friends or neighbours to come and visit us to investigate what we offer.
The Open Days conducted so far have been an outstanding success, with the standout feature being our students and staff working together and engaging in learning experiences. Many of the visitors I had the opportunity to speak with commented on the atmosphere of the College, and a sense of feeling very welcome. This is something that is often mentioned by the hundreds of families that visit us each year.
Next week it will be very exciting to see the performances of ‘Shrek – The Musical’ in the new RW Gibson Music Performance Centre, located at the Senior School. I wish the members of the cast and crew, the musicians and all of those who are involved in our College production, a rewarding and successful week of performing to the audiences.
The Senior School community will also soon be occupying the English and Languages Building which was completed this week, including extensive landscaping. The modern, contemporary learning spaces, forum for gatherings, and office and meeting spaces for staff, all look amazing and provide an excellent addition to the continued development of facilities at the Senior School.
As we anticipate the term ahead holding for us greater opportunity to re-engage, there is much to celebrate, and much for which we can be thankful. Forging ahead now without the looming possibility of lockdowns and enforced remote learning, we can focus on rebuilding relationships and working together as a community to provide the very best for our wonderful students.
I leave you with this encouragement.
“Finally, brothers and sisters, rejoice! Strive for full restoration, encourage one another, be of one mind, live in peace. And the God of love and peace will be with you.” 2 Corinthians 13:11
My best wishes to you all.
What’s Happening at Middle School – Highton
- NAPLAN WEEK 1
- Tue, May 10 – Sun, May 15 – College Production ‘Shrek’
- Fri, May 13 – GISSA Athletics Championships – Landy Field
- NAPLAN WEEK 2
- Mon, 16 May – Year 6 Immigration Museum Excursion
- Mon, 16 May – 8B and 8G Science Geology Excursion
- Fri, May 20 – Vic College Basketball Championships – Inter Boys & Girls
- East Timor Independence Day Celebrations
- Sun, 22 May – Year 9 GEOS – The Prom Camp #1 begins
Another Big and Beautiful Week Across our Campus
It has been another full week across our campus, with the rich learning continuing amidst two major events on our calendar. On Tuesday, we welcomed many visitors on to our campus for our Open Day. Our guests had the opportunity for a ‘behind-the-scenes’ look at our concert band rehearsal, a welcome from our College Principal Glen McKeeman, and a tour of our campus, led by our Year 9 leaders. It is on days such as these that I am especially proud of our campus community, as they offer the opportunity to showcase to the wider public, all that is on offer at CCG, and that which makes this place unique.
Later in the week, on Thursday evening, we held our Semester 1 Student Learning Conferences. Thank you to those students, staff and families who gave their time and attention to these important meetings. Working in genuine partnership with families is an important priority of ours here at CCG, and this week has provided an especially good opportunity for that. I hope you found the conferences fruitful and informative, and now feel well placed to continue to support and celebrate your young person’s learning journey moving forward. We will hold our next conferences in Semester 2.
Student Uniform Requirements as the Weather Turns Cold
Please refer to the following, when helping your young person prepare for school each morning, from next week. With the new school term well underway and with the changing of seasons, students wearing the original uniform will be required to wear full winter uniform from next week, beginning Monday, May 9. For those students wearing the ‘new’ mix and match wardrobe, there are no seasonal requirements. Please be aware that items from the original uniform cannot be mixed with items from the new wardrobe. Furthermore, anything that is not a part of our College Student Wardrobe Policy should not be visible. This includes clothing items as well as necklaces and/or bracelets and hairstyles beyond those permitted in our College Wardrobe Regulations. Thank you for your support in helping your young person to present themselves brilliantly and proudly in their uniform, each and every school day.
Year 5 Music Excursion
On Monday, May 2, the Year 5 classes were invited to attend a concert by a visiting band from Eltham High School – The Eltham High School Symphonic Band played a wide range of music from Moana to a Percy Grainger Dance called Mock Morris. Our students were able to hear the instruments they are learning in the Year 5 music program – and see students who have been playing them for five or more years. They heard about the wonderful opportunities that can come from playing in a band and how just five minutes of practice a day can give them enough momentum to progress!
The students were privileged to experience the ensemble tuning up their woodwind, percussion and brass sections at the beginning of the performance. The conductor Mr Rick Keenan outlined where the inspiration for the pieces came from such as old movies and famous composers. He also highlighted the importance of consistently practising with time, articulation and dynamic contrast being pivotal to the success of the performance.
It was wonderful to watch the smiles on the students’ faces as the final piece played was from the movie ‘Moana.’ There was lots of clapping and audience interaction and a resounding statement that, “they made Moana cool again!”
A big thank you to Fiona Gardner and the Music Department for facilitating this very inspiring performance for our young students.
Year 8 Visual Communication Design – Promotional Items
As part of their Communication Design Unit the Year 8 Visual Communication Design students have been creating a promotional item for a company or organisation of their choice. They have completed planning drawings and are now adding their design to either a skateboard deck or a hoodie. Their designs are original and they have used a combination of mediums such as; spray paint, acrylic paint, posca pens, and image transfer processes. It has been exciting to see their individuality shine through this process.
What makes Christianity so unique? Over the semester, the year 8 cohort have been investigating a number of different religions and linking it back to how it compares to Christianity. There have been some interesting videos and information discussed in classes over Term 1 and Term 2 asks the students to look at presenting their newfound knowledge in an Infograph type assessment. Recently students were engaged in some small group work that required them to use the provided resources to present their findings on a particular religion to the rest of the class. Some found this task challenging as they were asked to work with others they may not have done very much with so far this year. While others thrived on the opportunity to lead and share their interest in the faith being discussed and their own faith.There have been some fascinating discoveries for some students, as they were not very aware of some of the world religions. In doing this unit they have been able to learn more about the people within their community and also be able to see how the Christian faith might be seen as unique.
The National Assessment Program – Literacy and Numeracy (NAPLAN) for Years 3, 5, 7 and 9 students is being conducted throughout a two-week window from May the 10th to the 20th. All schools are required to shift to online testing for 2022.
NAPLAN tests assess student knowledge and skills in writing, reading, conventions of language (spelling, grammar and punctuation) and numeracy. The results of the tests provide information for students, parents, teachers and principals and can be used to improve student achievement.
All students are expected to participate in the NAPLAN Online tests and ensure they bring their device to school fully charged, along with a set of headphones. Catch-up tests will be available for individual students who are absent on test days up to and including Friday, May 20.
Support will be arranged for students with disabilities, if the student regularly uses similar support for classroom assessment tasks. Exemptions may be granted to students with significant intellectual disabilities and to students who have been learning English for less than one year. Our Learning Support Coordinators liaise with families of children who may be eligible for support due to disability or an exemption. Parental consent is required before any support due to disability or exemption is granted.
Students may be withdrawn from NAPLAN by their parent or carer. This is a matter for consideration by parents and carers in consultation with the principal. If, after consultation, you decide to withdraw your child, you must sign a Student Withdrawal form. These forms are available from the school by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org
Later in the year you will receive your child’s personal NAPLAN report and more information will be provided about this process at a later date.
If you have any concerns, please don’t hesitate to contact either of our two Learning Support Coordinators or relevant Year Level Coordinators.
Learning Support Coordinator for Years 5-6
Kathrine Bowyer email@example.com
Learning Support Coordinator for Years 7-9
Miriam Pohlenz firstname.lastname@example.org
Science Talent Search at CCG 2022
Students at Christian College Geelong in Years 5-10 students are invited to participate in the 2022 Science Talent Search (STS).
The Science Talent Search has three broad aims:
- To stimulate an ongoing interest in the study of sciences by:
- encouraging independent self-motivated project work amongst students of science.
- giving students the opportunity to communicate their achievements to a wider audience.
- according recognition of effort and achievement in a scientific enterprise.
- To promote the direct involvement of the students in the processes of science and its communication.
- To give the public at large an opportunity to see the quality of work being achieved in science, by both primary and post primary students.
CCG is pleased to offer the following sections in 2022.
- Creative writing
- Working models
Detailed information about each section can be obtained from your science teacher.
Entry fees will be covered by the school.
The number of entries across the school is capped, so students are encouraged to submit registrations to their science teacher as early as possible. Registrations are made by filling in the student registration form and handing in to your science teacher.
Registrations close: Friday 20th May
Closing date for entries: Friday 15th July
Participating students will complete their entries individually or in a group of 2 in their own time. Support will be available from their science teacher and at optional lunchtime sessions.
For more information please see your science teacher, or email Mrs Huddart, Director of Teaching and Learning – Science email@example.com
Shrek the Musical – Art, Technology and Design
Term 1 has been very busy in our Art, Technology and Design Faculty and we are extremely excited to be part of the College Shrek Production in the Senior Music Centre.
A selection of Middle and Junior School students’ Visual Art & Textile classes across four campuses have been madly creating artworks to exhibit. Construction Units of work have each had the opportunity to focus a variety of skills with each year level creating different themed pieces of work. Installations of Modroc swamp scenery, paper collage birds, paper mache critters, hand sewn bees, pastel drawings and lily pads on the pond is truly a wonderful collection of student artwork.
Senior School, Year 10 Food Studies classes have been designing, costing, testing and trialling options and making Sweet and Savoury Snack boxes of treats to sell for the evening shows of the production. Limited delicious snack boxes will be sold at intermission by the students in the Music Centre Foyer for $10 per box. (100 boxes available per evening) Shrek cake pops, green jelly slice…………ohhhh and so much more!
A MYTERN Thought for This Week
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