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.



What’s Happening at Middle School

Week 5, Monday 28th February 2022

Mon 28th Feb – CCG Surfing Championships
Tues 1st Mar – GISSA Cricket  & Tennis Championships
Thurs 3rd Mar – Deakin District Summer Carnival (Yr5&6)

Week 6, Monday 7th February 2022

Mon 7th Mar – Rural 2 (BG) girls commence
Tues 8th Mar – Marine Studies Snorkelling Prac
Wed 9th Mar – Y 9 Food Studies Pop – up Snack Bar

Wed 9th Mar – Project Care event – Offspring Day (more information in next week’s Vine)
Fri 11th Mar – Leaders Investiture and Service of Dedication


COVIDSafe Update

Our first four weeks of the school year have been remarkable, with students and staff benefitting from the relative calm and consistency of learning on campus, and from the joy of new friendships being formed. I would like to offer my heartfelt thanks to our community of families, for your overall support, and especially in helping keep everyone safe in your adherence to our COVIDSafe measures. As you may be aware, earlier this week the Victorian Government announced changes to the pandemic orders and public health recommendations that will come into effect at 11.59pm tonight.

The key change that effects our Middle School – Highton community is that students in Years 7-9 will no longer be required to wear face-masks indoors. I’d like to stress that all students are of course very welcome to continue to wear a face mask, should they prefer. It is also important to note that all students from Years 5-9 will be required to wear a mask on the College bus network, unless they have a mask exemption.Twice-a-week rapid antigen testing on school days continues to be strongly recommended for all mainstream early childhood, primary and secondary staff and students. Rapid antigen testing is recommended for students at home on Monday morning before school and again on Thursday morning. Further RATs will be distributed to students next week.

And excitingly, as I write to you late on this Friday afternoon, I have just received updated operational guidelines for Victorian schools. An eagerly awaited change is that school community events are now permitted. Whilst we will continue to take an appropriately cautious approach to welcoming large groups of families back on to the campus, I look forward to sharing with you shortly some opportunities for you to attend the campus to connect with your young person’s teachers. I certainly realise that this has been missing for all of us, and I look forward to getting to meet each of you in person, before too long.

Take care this weekend

Year 9 Leadership Experience

On Friday 18th February, the Leadership Experience commenced for our 2022 Middle School leaders. The Mentors, House Captains and Prefects spent the day involved in a range of activities and discussions about leadership, exploring what it means to be a servant leader and the importance of working together as a team to create a positive impact in a community. The students were given the opportunity to reflect on their own and others’ strengths and how they can utilise these in their respective roles this year.

The day included initiative activities on site at Middle School as well as a scavenger hunt around Eastern Beach, where students had to work as a team to answer questions and complete challenges. Despite wet conditions, the leaders worked effectively in small groups to complete all of the challenges. Their reflections about the experience were insightful as they evaluated what helped them to achieve success in the activities.

In their designated leadership roles, the students also commenced planning for the year ahead and they are very excited about the impact they can have and the initiatives they can lead in 2022.

Our Prefects and House captains stayed overnight in the Middle School Sports and Aquatic Centre. During the evening sessions, students had the opportunity to reflect on what Middle School means to them and their roles leading our campus in 2022. Students heard from a Leadership Panel consisting of ex-students and past Middle School leaders, Molly England and Ted Page-Walker. To finish the evening, the students participated in a session with Middle School Chaplain, Nicole Riddle, looking closer at Christian leadership and the role of the Holy Spirit in our daily lives.

The camp was a wonderful opportunity to see our leaders come together as a team and we are looking forward to seeing them have a positive impact on the lives of our Middle School community this year.

Some student reflections

A key highlight that I had during the Leadership Experience was definitely working together as a team during the scavenger hunt at Eastern Beach. It was fun because although it rained and all of our clothes ended up drenched, we worked together as a team and I got closer to people that I hadn’t been able to before. I learnt that we can do more in a team than by ourselves from the game with the red and green cards. In this game, if everyone chose the red card we all got 50 points and if everyone did red except one group, that group would get 100 points. What ended up happening was every group thinking they had to win and each group chose green every time so nobody earnt any points. When we reflected on this activity, we realised that the focus of the game was not for our own group to score the most points but to work together with other groups to enable all groups to score as many points as possible.  Pia Diamond

During the Leadership Experience, I enjoyed spending time with my fellow leaders, getting to know them and listening to their ideas and intentions for 2022, planning and setting goals, and understanding everyone’s reasons for applying for a leadership position. I loved the challenge we did at Eastern Beach throughout the day, which helped me develop patience, listening and communicating skills. I am grateful for the opportunity to have these experiences and I am looking forward to more throughout the year. Bella Lynch

We spent the day partaking in some fun, competitive, teamwork-based activities and talking about the year ahead. During the day we went to Eastern Beach to do an amazing race sort of activity that involved teamwork, communication, and everyone’s input. We ran around looking for signs, names, words and we had to complete a volleyball challenge. When we came back to school, we talked about upholding our values and our responsibilities for the year ahead and overall, and we had some great chats. It was a good time to get to know each other and I think I speak for everyone there that this year’s leadership team is the best we have ever seen. Micah Boseley

The Leadership Experience was an amazing opportunity, as we got to know people we normally wouldn’t. The chance to work with the other leaders was a true learning experience.  One thing that stuck with me was something one of the guests on the leadership panel said, which was “working with a diverse group may be difficult but it generates ideas that go beyond what you initially thought.” I carry that with me now, and it truly has opened my eyes. Supreet Kaur

On reflection, the Leadership Experience taught me many important skills that I will use throughout this year. We participated in many activities that involved teamwork, communication and listening to one another. The activities helped us realise that making important decisions does not always mean it will benefit you. My key highlights were the leadership panel, as I got lots of great advice and inspiration from both Molly and Ted, and another highlight was simply chatting and engaging in games with my peers, as it strengthened my connections with them and we got to know one another better. Overall, the Leadership Experience was a very positive experience, I learnt a lot and had fun. Jaime McKie

In Year 8, it’s All About Community!

This year marks the eighth year I have been teaching at Christian College, all of which have been as a member of the Year 8 team, something I am very proud of. Over the journey I have had the privilege of teaching hundreds of Year 8 students within the Health & Physical Education and Sport environments, have worked alongside a range of enthusiastic and inspiring colleagues and have been blessed to be a Homeroom teacher throughout all these years. I have learnt so many key things over this time, however, the one area that always sits at the forefront of my mind when working with a year level, is the importance of developing a sense of community.

As we draw to the end of Week 4, students in Year 8 have been working around the central theme of ‘Community’ within their Wellbeing classes. This has involved defining what a community looks like (within and beyond the school environment) and the key characteristics required in developing a cohesive community. As part of the Wellbeing program, students have been encouraged to focus on how they can assist in a community setting using their own skills to help others. The Positive Impact Project (P.I.P) is a new initiative implemented into Wellbeing this year, as a means of educating students about the importance of demonstrating a servant heart (a willingness and want to help others, without expecting something in return). Students will start putting their skills into practice in the upcoming weeks, then share their experiences with fellow peers within their Homeroom. Looking forward to some fantastic community spirit and selfless practices displayed amongst our Year 8s this year!

Some other key areas and upcoming events helping to develop our community within Year 8 include:

  • Weekly Homeroom Challenges: Every Wednesday the six Year 8 homerooms work/compete as a team to undertake a range of different challenges, in an effort to earn points for their respective homeroom. A prize awaits the winning homeroom at the end of the term, based on total points accumulated throughout each challenge. Well done so far to 8H, 8M and 8Y who have reigned supreme in the first three challenges.
  • GEOS Camp: 8B, 8G and 8H will be attending the annual GEOS Camp in Week 9 of Term 1. Classes attending are currently working on camp skills involving; tent set up, trangia cooking, bike riding, etc, with a specific focus on the central themes of developing independence and resilience (stepping outside of your comfort zone), positive teamwork, and a greater appreciation for the local natural environment.
  • House Carnivals: The annual House Swimming and House Athletics Carnivals take place in Week 7 and Week 10 respectively. Both these events provide a great opportunity to engage in House spirit, a time in which the whole school community comes together to participate in some friendly competition.
  • Project Care Representatives: Within each of the Homerooms across Year 8, a Project Care Representative has been elected by their peers. This important role involves assisting with Project Care days and providing an avenue for students to voice their thoughts and views around school related matters.

Congratulations to the following students elected to represent their Homeroom and Year 8: Molly Herbert (8B), Summer Stretton (8G), Pascal Nwanze (8H), Isabella Shanahan (8M), Adam Bolton (8R) and Evy Ruplal (8Y)

The following is some feedback from Year 8 students in regard to what they have enjoyed so far, and are looking forward to, in 2022, along with some images of students participating in GEOS Camp preparation and snorkelling in Marine Studies.

Emily Goudge (8B)

Being back at school has been great, as I have been able to create new memories with friends and experience new things such as preparing for GEOS camp. I have also enjoyed participating in the weekly Homeroom challenges, as well as the Interschool Sport Elective. I look forward to spending time with my friends on GEOS camp, as well as learning new information about the local landscapes.

George Christie (8Y)

Being back at school and finally being able to do all the things you can’t do at home has been awesome! I have really enjoyed building and coding robots in Systems, running around and kicking footballs in P.E and trying new food in Japanese. It has also been great to catch up with my friends after so long. I can’t wait for the Swimming Carnival and to go snorkelling next semester in Marine Studies. It has been heaps of fun being back at school and the rest of the year will be a blast!

Holly Jaques (8B)

Year 8 has already provided a lot of fun opportunities, such as class challenges and electives. I can’t wait to do GEOS! I like how we do things as a community in Year 8 and can’t wait for what the year has to offer.

Tim Collins,

Classroom Teacher

The Teen Mental Health First Aid Course

This year at MS Highton, we are excited to have all our Year 9 students taking part in the Teen Mental Health First Aid Course. During their time in Transformation, students are involved in three interactive classroom sessions of 75 minutes each, totalling 3.5 hours. The course has been specifically designed to be engaging for this age group. The course includes engaging role play activities.

Mental health first aid is the help provided to a person who is developing a mental health problem, or who is in a mental health crisis, until appropriate professional treatment is received, or the crisis resolves. Mental health first aid strategies are taught in evidence-based training programs authored by Mental Health First Aid (MHFA) Australia and conducted by accredited MHFA Instructors across Australia.

The Teen MHFA Course teaches high school students how to provide mental health first aid to their friends. The course was developed in response to research indicating that young people have a preference for sharing problems with peers. The course curriculum is based on a study undertaken to determine the best actions a young person can take to support a peer with a mental health problem.

Students learn the Teen MHFA Action Plan, as well as information about different types of mental health problems and mental health crisis situations among young people, and the relationship between thoughts, feelings and behaviours. At the completion of the training, all students receive a copy of the Teen MHFA Manual to keep and a Certificate of Completion.

Before your child commences the course, families are invited to an information session about Teen Mental Health First Aid to learn more about what is covered and ask any questions. We encourage you to speak to your young people about these topics at home as well.

“The experience I have had is that once you start talking about experiencing a mental health struggle, you realise that actually you’re part of quite a big club.” — Prince Harry


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.