From the Head of Middle School, Jeremy Martin
A major focus for the Middle School this year will be striving to meet the high expectations which drive the culture at BGS. Culture embraces the values, beliefs and principles of members of the community and their behaviors. The culture of a school is difficult to express clearly but everyone in the community has an awareness of it.
I join Ross Featherston in his belief “sweating the small stuff” is vital to ensure excellence in all areas of our community and to create and maintain our high performance culture. We have high expectations of our boys in all areas – punctuality, uniform, respectful relationships, genuine effort and application in class, homework and so on. Our behavioral and pastoral systems reinforce our expectations and rewards boys for demonstrating positive behavior, as well as making it clear what behavior choices will not be tolerated. There is an inherent need in boys (and in some instances a craving) for structure and boundaries.
All of this is underpinned by our House system. The Year 7 camps in particular have reinforced the importance of this system in the Middle School. Boys have a sense of connectedness and belonging to a House – they identify themselves as an Armstrong or Crowther boy. But more than that, on the camps and back at school, I am beginning to see boys striving to represent themselves, their House, the year level, the Middle School and BGS with honour and pride – this is culture in action.
Don’t forget to check the School wide section
News relating to the whole of the School, including the Headmaster’s comment, will now appear in the School wide section of the eNews – click on the button below to take a look.
From Year 7 Head of House, Tim Marshall
Don’t let the waves pass you by
From a Head of House perspective, I love going on the Year 7 Camp as if offers the opportunity to learn so much about boys during five days away.
One example was while surfing on Monday at the picturesque Urquhart’s Bluff.
I noticed those who typically throw everything at it, out the back of the surf, very much in Rob ‘Kelly Slater’ Hanley territory. These boys appeared to be well-seasoned surfers by the age of 12/13 and were both confident and hopeful of their next big wave. I applauded them for their courage and envied their ability. Most importantly, they were giving it a red-hot crack.
After lowering my eyes I soon noticed those in the whitewash, obviously out of their comfort zone in the water but still throwing caution to the wind. They laughed as much as they fell off boards and were having an absolute ball in the process – but most importantly had no shame in not being overly proficient or skilled in the area of surfing. They were beginners, and while no doubt boasting oodles of skill in other areas, surfing wasn’t one of them.
Then there was the middle minority; those not possessing the ability to get out in the big surf, but at the same time not having the courage to be seen starting at the beginner level. I watched as wave after wave passed them while lying on a board watching the world go by. One or two soon tired of a lack of action and paddled closer to shore to join those starting out and they too could be seen with smile on their faces. While initially not wanting to be recognised as a beginner, they swallowed their pride and made the most of the opportunity.
We can all learn something from this idyllic session at Urquhart’s Bluff. All of us possess high levels of ability in some areas, and not as much in others. Success at School comes to the boy who has the courage to seek assistance when faced with challenges that don’t come naturally. Whether it be Study Club, one-on-one assistance in the classroom, selection in a lower graded sports team or speaking to our Counsellor about a troubling issue – don’t be the boy not able to ride the big waves yet not willing to come closer to shore. Being stuck in this conundrum often leads to little progress and regret down the track.
There’s something for everyone at this beach. Don’t let the waves pass you by.
Jumping Jackson does it again
Congratulations to Jackson Sweet (Year 8) on some very impressive results in the Victorian Track & Field Championships last weekend. Not only did Jackson finish in the placings across the board, but he recorded personal bests in all of his events!
Jackson finished second in his U14 Long Jump event (5.43m), Triple Jump (11.61m) and 90 Hurdles (14.31s) before taking gold in the High Jump with an impressive leap of 1.60m (pictured).
We wish Jackson luck as he narrows his sights on the Australian Track & Field Championships in Perth next month.
Celebrating the arrival of the Year of Monkey
Students enjoying watching the Lion Dance
Year 7 students Eric Stone and Callan Cummins loved the delicious Chinese dumplings
Last Friday students and staff from Years 5 and 6 marked the beginning of Chinese Spring Festival with a spectacular Chinese Lion Dance, drumming, live music, red pockets, Chinese lollies and delicious Chinese dumplings.
It was a wonderful event with professional lion dance group proudly showcasing Chinese heritage and culture. We gathered in the Quad as a whole school community joined by students and staff. Loud music, symbols, acrobatic dance movements and lots of traditional Chinese lollies kept the boys totally enthralled and provided much fun in the celebration. We thank Ms. Nancy Ting, the Head of Chinese for organizing this special event so successfully.
Chinese Spring Festival is the oldest and most important festival in the Chinese calendar. It goes back in history to the year 2600 BC. Like the Australia calendar, the Chinese Lunar calendar is a yearly one but is based on the cycles of the moon. This year, the New Year fell on 8 February.
It is an opportunity to celebrate the diversity of cultural in Australia today. Here I wish to express my appreciation to the BGS teachers and staff, who have made great efforts to support Chinese back ground students. I am also very pleased to see that the Chinese students are among some of the most hard-working, and bringing new ideas, a strong work ethic.
2016 is year of Monkey, this year’s monkey is paired with the symbol of the sun. The hot sun is always regarded as a sign of vigour and prosperity. It carries people’s best wishes for red-hot prosperity and vigorous progress.
At last, I wish to share a Chinese proverb: Jin Ji Qi Wu 金鸡起舞, (People rise early to work at the first crow of a rooster) it is my sincere wish that all the BGS students continue to be hard working and diligent and have all your dreams fulfilled in the Year of Monkey.
Linda Chen, Middle School teacher of Chinese
Middle School Notices
Year 7 – Immunisations
The Year 7 Immunisations are to be held at Brighton Grammar on Thursday 10th March 2016.
To date, we have only received a minimal return of the Immunisations Cards and we encourage you to return the cards to Middle School Reception as soon as possible.
These cards are to be forwarded onto Bayside Council prior to the Immunisations, whether your son is to be immunised or not. If you require an Immunisation Card, there are spare cards at Middle School Reception.
Many thanks for your assistance.
Please click here to view this week’s parenting tip: ‘Insights: Teasing vs. Bullying’
Sports team reports from Saturday 13 February
Please click here for detailed reports on the various Middle School matches played last weekend.
For this week’s Middle School sports fixtures please click here.
For this week’s Middle School sports teams please click here
Key Middle School dates
Wednesday 24 February
- Year 7 Parent/House Tutor Discussions (4pm – 8.30pm)
- Year 8 Group Photo (summer uniform)
- Year 7 & 8 SchoolPix (for those boys who were absent on the previous photo day)
Tuesday 1 March
- International Parents Information Evening in the Nexus (6.30pm – 7.30pm)
- Chess (BGS & FGS) at Firbank Grammar School
Wednesday 2 March
- Year 7 House Swimming at BGS (7.30am – 9.30am)
Wednesday 9 March
- Year 8 House Swimming at BGS (7.30am – 9.30am)
Thursday 10 March
- Year 7 Immunisation
Monday 14 March
- Labour Day Public Holiday