From Head of the Junior School, Peter Tellefson
I had not anticipated having to do my first ‘meet and greet’ for the year, standing under an umbrella! While the rain presented us with some challenges, we all survived and the first day progressed well for our boys and staff. It is a pleasure to welcome you all to the start of the 2016 school year.
Our boys are generally excited to be back, staff are establishing routines and I am sure all parents are pleased to have your children back at school. A special welcome to our new boys and their families; time will fly quickly, and I am sure with the supportive network that exists at Wilson House, you will quickly feel a strong sense of connection and belonging. Welcome to our new staff: Mr Michael Stephens (4 Cook), Mr Hamish Leahy (6 Resolution) and Ms Adrienne Mewett (Year 5/6 Drama).
New classrooms, new teachers, new classmates, homework, music rehearsals, sport training nights, swimming trials, tuck orders, record books, uniform requirements, playground expectations – the list goes on. While the first few days can be a daunting experience, I am very impressed with the effort from our staff, boys and parents to establish routines. Boys certainly respond positively to routine, it gives them a sense of security and assists with their time management and organisational skills.
It is important we provide opportunities to develop independence and responsibility from an early age. So often, parents are keen to carry the School bag and ‘organise’ their son’s day; this is eliminating essential learning for your son. As I meet and greet boys in the morning it is pleasing to see our boys carrying their own School bag.
Parent information nights
Our Parent Information/Social evenings commence tonight for our Prep to Year 3 parents. We expect each boy is represented by at least one parent. Please note, this is an adult only event and the boys do not attend these presentations.
The format of the evening is as follows:
- 7.00 – 7.20pm Headmaster’s Presentation – G. B. Robertson Hall
- 7.30 – 8.10pm Homeroom Presentation – Prep – Year 3 classrooms
- 8.15– 9.00pm Social Function – Creek area
Next Thursday, 11 February is our Year 4 to 6 Evening, and Thursday, 18 February our ELC event.
Junior School Happenings and Reminders
- I ask our Junior School parents to co-operate with the School policy and not include nuts or food containing a high concentration of nuts, such as peanut butter, in their boys’ lunch.
- Thank you to Mrs Basia Quill and the JPG (Junior Parents Group) Executive who organised and served tea and coffee for the ‘Welcome’ morning tea last Friday morning. The JPG plays such an important role in the life of Junior School, not only through fundraising, but even more so by maintaining a sense of connection and community.
- BGS has a policy which requires parents who wish to assist or participate in any class activities or programs to have a current ‘Working with Children Check’. Application forms are to be completed online at http://www.workingwithchildren.vic.gov.au/home/applications/.
- Parents are encouraged to access the 2016 Junior School Handbook which will answer many questions, and assist with your son’s transition. Please click here to view.
- When entering and exiting the Grosvenor Street car park the safety of our boys is paramount. The drop-off/pick-up zone is on the left-hand side of the driveway. Parents who use the drop-off/pick-up zone will need to approach this area via the northern (Oval) side of the tree at the far end of the car park. The exit lane is on the right-hand side; these areas are clearly marked. To assist with the flow of traffic in the car park we ask all boys from the ELC and Junior School not to play on the Adventure Playground after school. I would ask all parents to support this request.
- The Tuckshop is organised and staffed by Alliance. Orders can be placed online via the Flexischool’s website by 8.30am each day at http://www.flexischools.com.au/.
- Parents visiting during school hours are to go to the Junior School Reception, and receive a Visitor’s Pass. Parents are asked not to go directly to classrooms. If parents collect their sons during school hours they need to complete sign-out details at Reception. Parents are to make appointments, where possible, outside school hours.
Taking our first steps in the Early Learning Centre
Firstly I would like to say a warm welcome to our new families in the Early Learning Centre and welcome back to our wonderful families from last year. How we longed for the boys to finally arrive last Friday as the centre has been lonely without them. It is amazing how much colour and energy they bring to the ELC.
With our Commencement program now well under way the boys have surprised us with their resilience and courage dealing with the transition. Although the shorter sessions may seem feasible to us as adults, starting a new routine or returning to the structure of school after the holidays can be quite overwhelming and tiring. I would like to thank all of our parents/caregivers and grandparents for their support in ensuring a positive start to their school year. With smiling faces, huge hugs, hi 5’s and uniforms that seem to swamp some of the boys, the term has definitely got off to a happy start.
We have nearly received all of our Confidential Forms and Immunisation Records from all families and thank you for understanding the importance of completing these requirements. Classroom timetables and an ELC Calendar of Term 1 events will be sent home prior to our first full days next week. This will help you schedule your diaries for the months ahead. The first main function is our ELC Parent Information and Social Night on Thursday 18 February 7-9pm.
Your son’s classroom program and reflective journal operates on a fortnightly cycle and will be emailed home accordingly. Individual Term Objectives will be discussed at our Parent/Teacher discussion on 22 or 23 February. Information will be sent out soon.
A reminder that the pin code for the door has been sent home and also listed in the foyer area if you have forgotten. A good idea is to pop it in your phone notes to refer too.
All parents who wish to participate in ELC experiences or activities are required to have a Working With Children Check – volunteer. You can get an application form from the Post Office or access online at http://www.workingwithchildren.vic.gov.au/
If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to ask. The direct phone number to the ELC is 8591 2284 or my email is email@example.com
We look forward to having all of the boys in together over the coming days. If you are finding that your son is tired please have a chat to his classroom teacher.
Miss Amelia Barrow, Director of the Early Learning Centre
Teaching & Learning
This year in 6 Investigator, I look forward to…
The boys have ironed out the holiday cobwebs and are slowly getting back into the busy routine of school. There are many wonderful activities the boys will experience this year and there has been a wave of excitement about the year ahead.
“In Year 6 I’m looking forward to the billycarts, the musical, also the camps and being leaders of the School.” Tom O
“This year I am really looking forward to the Billycart Cup because I love building and making things, plus I love competition.” Charlie H
“This year in Year 6 I am most looking forward to APS sport because I’ve never done it before.” Matthew B
“In Year 6 I am really looking forward to Canberra because it will be the first time on a plane without my family.” Henry M
“I’m really looking forward to the Musical because I enjoy singing and meeting new friends at Firbank.” Lenny E
This year in 4 Flinders, I am looking forward to …
“This year I am looking forward to doing Science and lots of experiments.” Tom
“This year I am looking forward to improving my English.” Louis
“This year I am looking forward to having a younger buddy.” Jem
“This year I am looking forward to making gliders in Design and Technology.” Oliver
“This year I am looking forward to Year 4 Camp at Anglesea with my friends.” Alex
This Week’s Parenting Tip
Please click here to view this week’s Parenting Tip entitled ‘Insights: 10 Confidence-Building Strategies every Parent and Teacher Should Know‘
JPG (Junior Parent Group) News
Dear Family and Friends of the BGS community,
It’s great to be back into a routine and familiar surrounds. With the new year we also welcome new families and friends to the School and wish you a successful and fulfilling journey. 2016 promises to be an exciting year and so keeping this in mind, please…
Save the date for the Junior School Ball Friday, 27 May 2016. This is our major fundraiser, and all monies raised will go towards new cricket nets and the upgrade of the sporting area at the lower end of the oval. More information will be available regarding the Ball in due course, so start polishing those dancing shoes!
Thank you to those parents who have already volunteered to be Year Level Reps, this is a great way of getting to know the year level through organising gatherings and keeping parents up to date with JPG news and activities. If you are interested, please contact Amanda Field 0400 136 413.
All the best for 2016,
How it works
The JPG serves the School Community via Committee, Year Level Representatives, intermittent volunteers and monthly meetings. Without the vital role of ongoing parent contribution the JPG activities would not be possible and the boys love these events and the sense of community belonging. JPG meetings are held the first Tuesday of each month (except school holiday periods). They run from 8.45am to 9.30am in the G. B. Robertson Hall. Everyone is very welcome. Please get involved. For any JPG enquiries, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
New JPG Committee member required
The JPG committee is looking for a new parent to work with the JPG team in the role of Communications. If you are interested in getting more involved, please email email@example.com.
Year Level Representatives and Volunteers
The JPG are looking for Year Level Representatives, and a general pool of volunteers to assist on any level. For Year Level Reps, it is preferable we have one volunteer from each class, but 2 – 4 people per Year Level is great. Representatives work as a team to co-ordinate social events within their year level and arrange volunteers for one event per year within their Year Level (i.e. mustering 4 volunteers for delivering food to classrooms for the end of term lunches). Tasks and neither onerous nor time consuming and it is an opportunity to facilitate communication, connectedness and contribution within the school community.
Please email firstname.lastname@example.org if you are interested in being involved, either representing your Year Level or any form of volunteering. The more the merrier.
Junior School Welcome Picnic – SAVE THE DATE.
The BGS Junior School Family Night is on Friday, 26 February in the Junior School grounds. This is an opportunity for families to get together informally, welcome new families and bring a picnic.
Boys can play whilst parents socialise. Tables will be provided in the red square and the JPG will provide a free sausage sizzle and icy poles for the boys on a first in first served basis. BYO picnic and drinks.
BGS Swim Towel
BGS swim towels are still available for order. Towels can be named or unnamed. Click here to order your towel.
Key Junior School Dates
JPG Welcome Picnic
JPG Meeting. G. B. Robertson Hall, 8.45 – 9.30am
Sh@re Community Campus News
Now that the children are rested after the long holiday break, maybe it’s time to look for something new to do after school or on weekends to keep the children happy! Sh@re Community Campus offer the convenience of after school or weekend programs run at the school campus’s so you can enjoy some after school fun without travelling! Programs are open to all in the wider community too so there is also a chance to meet other children.
Some of the new programs we are offering this term include:
Cheryne is offering Resilience and Mindfulness training for children. Perfect for those that are anxious or stressed! Cheryne comes to us based on parent recommendations, so we know her methodology and approach works! Children will learn the three key aspects to mindfulness (seeing, hearing and feeling) and will have lots of opportunity to gain inner insights and develop their executive functioning without even knowing it! If you want to lower anxiety and stress in your children’s lives, join us Mondays at Firbank Sandringham. See www.beyoubetrue.com.au
Merryl is offering mosaicing Mondays after School from the BGS art room. Mosaicing is a therapeutic and creative outlet for children which can be as complex or as easy as they like. Merryl has a professional studio in Caulfield which I know many a parent and art teacher have admired her works from! We are fortunate to have her here after school. Bring your child’s ideas to life with mosaics. See www.merrylmosaics.com.au
Invent the World are offering coding classes on Mondays after school at Firbank Brighton. We know this skills is important so why not develop it young! While this class is already oversubscribed, we will add a second class in Term 2, so register your interest directly with Gin at Invent the World! See www.inventtheworld.com.au
Brick4Kidz are calling all space scientists to join them on the last frontier, travelling the surface of the moon, exploring Mars and the International Space Station. Bring your imaginations Wednesdays after school at Sandringham. See www.bricks4kidzaustralia.com.au/BPP
Semester 1 tennis forms were distributed to all boys from Prep – Year 6 this week. Please ensure enrolment forms are returned to the Junior School Office by tomorrow.
Andrew McLean, Tennis Coach
These items can be claimed from the Junior School Lost Property.
1 Blazer size 75B
1 Crested Sport Shorts Size 8
1 Navy Shorts Size 18
1 Navy/Red Polo Shirt Size 12
1 Black T-Shirt Size 12
1 Blue/Black Hoodie Size 12
1 Hampton Life Saving Slicker Size 14
1 ‘Peanut Shaped’ Blue Pillow
1 Standard Charter Soccer Shirt
1 Swim Bag BGS Crested