A Word from the Headmaster – Ross Featherston

Sport uniform update

It’s been great to see so many students in the new academic uniform and we’ve received positive feedback from parents, students and the general community.

After the success of the refresh process undertaken last year, the Uniform Steering Committee, along with Jonathan Ward, turned its attention to the Sport, as well as the Health and PE (HPE) uniforms. We’re now close to finalising the designs, ready for implementation in 2020, and look forward to revealing them later in the year.

The principles that have been applied to the design include:

  • Honouring of our history and heritage by using key BGS symbols along with our core colours
  • Consistency to ‘look and feel’ so teams across all sports will look the same and distinctively BGS (with the senior firsts teams having a small yet significant extra ‘mark’ on their uniforms)
  • A clearer distinction between the Sport (before and after school) and HPE (during school) uniforms, and closer alignment of the HPE uniform with the academic uniform
  • Student consultation
  • Modern cuts and first-class fabrics designed to suit active boys across all year levels
  • A simplified approach that will make the purchasing of sports uniforms easier and less costly for parents.

As with the academic uniform refresh process, we are mindful of the issues associated with transitioning from the old to the new. Once we have worked through these issues, we will communicate with you further. In the meantime, where possible, please keep your Sport and HPE uniform purchases to a minimum.

If you have any questions, please email us at the Uniform Steering Committee.

Have a great week.


From the Deputy Headmaster, Head of Junior School – Peter Tellefson

I have been very impressed and most appreciative of the support all parents from ELC to Year 6 have shown at the commencement of the school year. It is important that we make the effort to make connections as well as to maintain them. Our School offers many opportunities for members of our community to do this, but it is imperative we are committed to the ‘partnership’ it requires, and have the willingness and courage to step forward, to be involved and connected. From Parent Information Evenings and Parent Teacher Discussions to JPG events, year level social gatherings, the Family Welcome Picnic, classroom and excursion support, and sporting events, there are many and varied opportunities for parents to support and engage. I encourage you to take these opportunities as they arise. Our School will be a better place and your son’s learning will be enriched as a result.

Last Friday was our School Officers’ Induction Service, with all boys from Prep to Year 6 attending. It was so rewarding to see the leadership of our boys. As the Prep to Year 2 boys entered St Andrew’s Church for the first time, the Years 4 to 6 boys were guiding, modelling behaviours and leading the way. So often during the year we see the warmth, direction and care our older boys provide to our younger boys. Thank you to Father Lord, who led the Service, Hayley Blakiston and the Borwick House Choir, for leading the singing, and to the family members of our School Officers, who supported their sons. We look forward to the leadership of our Year 6 boys throughout 2019.


Junior School Happenings and Reminders

  • From the cold wet and windy conditions of November to the extreme heat of March, the support of families was greatly appreciated on Friday night at our Family Picnic. There was a great sense of community; the night was enjoyed by all. Thank you to Dr Eva Aschman, Mr Nick Bulfin and the JPG Committee for their organisation and to all families for your support.
  • Best wishes to our Year 5 boys and staff, who are on their Outdoor Education program next week. I look forward to spending time with the boys in the ‘wilds’ of Howqua on Wednesday and Thursday.
  • Best wishes to all families for the extended holiday weekend.


Student Achievements

Congratulations to the following Year 6 boys, who will be appointed to leadership positions at tomorrow’s Assembly:

Library Monitors – Declan McCormack, Gavin Liu, Huw Thomas, Trent Vincent

Science Monitors – Ethan Abramovich, Aidan Hearne, Thomas Lipovetsky, Robbie McNaughton, Conrad Retschko


From the Director of the Early Learning Centre – Amelia Barrow

Busy little bees in the ELC

This week has flown by with our busy learners in the ELC. Our Buddy Program is in full swing and we can see lovely bonds establishing amongst our boys and their ‘big buddies’. Whether the boys are working together on a project in their classroom, playing fun group games on the oval, exploring the Junior School, or just being boys in the outdoor playground, it certainly is a favourite experience each week. Please feel free to ask your son’s teacher his Buddy’s name if he has forgotten so you can ask questions about their time together.

At the beginning of the week, we hosted our Term 1 Parent Teacher Discussions. This enabled teachers and parents to discuss how the boys have settled into their year, and give an initial reflection of their development thus far. We thank all parents for making the time to come and chat with their son’s teacher.

Our Sports and Yoga Program with Claire Clarke this week has focused on balancing. Why not extend this over the long weekend by exploring the environment and getting outdoors to connect the boys’ understanding of their own spatial awareness?

In addition, the impact of reading and sharing stories on children’s development at this age is immeasurable. Switching off screens and opening books helps children explore their imaginations and develops their pre-literacy skills.

If you are cleaning out your kitchen cupboards, don’t forget about us. We are in need of pots, pans, utensils and bowls for our Outdoor Program. Thank you in anticipation!

A reminder that if you would like to be part of the ELC Program, you are more than welcome to join in an activity. We are always grateful to have your involvement and support, and the boys love having parents and grandparents in the ELC.

Our Harmony Day invitation was sent out on Schoolstream on Monday morning.  We will celebrate on Thursday 21 March with a cultural dress-up day and performance (10.00–11.00am). A shared morning tea after our performance will be hosted in the G B Robertson Hall – all ELC families welcome.  

We would like to wish you a lovely long weekend and look forward to seeing the boys back next Tuesday.


Teaching and learning

Science news

Our Preps have been exploring ‘sound’ in Science. They now understand that sound comes from invisible sound waves that travel through the air. If there is no air, there are no sound waves, which is why there is no sound on the Moon! The Preps loved experimenting with vibrations by speaking into balloons and feeling the vibrations with their hands. Using various percussion instruments, the boys learned they could make sounds that are low or high, loud or soft. 

The Year 2 boys have been looking at growth and change through the biological unit, ‘Watch it Grow’. They have been lucky enough to have a hands-on experience of the life stages of an invertebrate animal (in our case – a mealworm). They have been investigating the growth of a mealworm under different temperature conditions.  The boys have been expanding their scientific vocabulary and have learned that experiments need to be ‘fair’, with only one variable.

The boys in Year 3 have been focusing on heat as an energy source. They have learned that there are many heat sources at school and at home. The boys understand that heat can be produced in many ways and can move from one object to another. Each class conducted an investigation to compare the conductivity of different materials. Most recently, the boys learned that some materials absorb heat (like metal) and they completed an investigation with metal spoons and various heat producers.

Humans have always looked with wonder at the movement of celestial bodies in the sky.  We have used its rhythms to define our days, months and years, and scientists have used observations to understand our place in space. Using globes and torches, the Year 5 boys have enjoyed hands-on experiences to explain observable movement of the Sun and Moon in our sky. Using BrainPop, an online resource, they have represented their understanding of how the Earth orbits the Sun while rotating on its axis – which gives us seasons! At home, the boys supported their learning by investigating and recording the Sun’s movement across the sky and shared their results.

Learning in 6 Discovery

The learning journey in Year 6 is dynamic and fast-paced including a variety of learning experiences designed to fosters boys’ engagement. In the first six weeks of school, these are some of our learning highlights.

Making connections with fellow students in class enables a feeling of belonging. This has been fostered very quickly and easily in 6 Discovery through the boys being an integral part of the planning of our Year 6 Assembly item. As a team, we decided on a focus question: What is a ‘well being’? The learning intention was to convey the answer to this question through presenting scenarios on film and live, so that the audience of Junior School boys could identify how to be a ‘well being’. The class worked in small groups on their component of the presentation, sharing ideas, making decisions and refining their work to create a finished product. This involved the use of thinking skills, questioning and interview techniques, listening skills, technology, writing skills, public speaking, developing mindfulness activities, choreography, dancing and singing. Teamwork was the golden thread used to weave these skills and techniques together to produce an informative presentation about wellbeing in the Junior School.

Our Literary focus is the book Wonder and we discuss themes pertaining to the story through the use of close reading methods. This enables the boys to discuss and share ideas, which leads to written responses to focus questions and extended pieces of writing, comparing their own learning journey with that of the characters in the text. We have utilised a multifaceted approach to reinforce learning through our Circle Time topics ‘Kindness and Supporting Others’ and ‘Bullying, No Way!’ An IT focus, lead by Pauline Anthony through class blogging, on ‘Random Acts of Kindness’, has also integrated with our work on Wonder.

In the first six weeks of Year 6, the boys have worked on the elements of being an effective learner by experiencing all facets of the learning process. This includes: learning dispositions and being ready to learn, how to learn, taking the next steps in learning and the importance of feedback in the learning process. We look forward to building on this throughout 2019 on our journey of discovery in 6 Discovery.


This week’s parenting tip

Please click here to view this week’s parenting tip: ‘Angry Boys:  How boys can better manage their emotions’.


The Value of the Intangible with Michael Masterson

Top boys Private School, Brighton Grammar, Breakfast BIOs Logo

At our next BGS Breakfast Bio, Michael Masterson will explain what it takes to be a successful entrepreneur in today’s knowledge-based economy, including the importance of contacts. His journey hasn’t been without its failures – you’ll hear about these, too.  Don’t miss out – book now.

Date: Thursday 28 March 2019

Time: 7.00am for a 7.30am start

Location: The International, 81 Bay Street, Brighton

Cost: $60

Book: Breakfast with Michael Masterson