A word from the Headmaster, Ross Featherston
Respect is one of our four School values (the others being Passion, Integrity and Accountability). Like any values-led organisation, it is how we live these values day to day that marks the measure of their success. These values cannot just be words; they have to be part of how we go about our business and they have to be understood, valued and adhered to.
Consequently, I was pleased to see the recent results of a Senior School survey on culture where the Year 9, 10, 11 and 12 boys rated Respect as the most important of our four values. Furthermore, the boys recognised that being successful in life is best described by internal virtues, such as being hardworking, respectful, happy and holding high moral standards, rather than more external desires such as wealth.
As a School, we have a tremendous opportunity to further our work regarding Respect by being a Leading School in the Victorian Government’s Respectful Relationships Program over the next two years. We look forward to building and sustaining a culture of respect and gender equality throughout BGS.
Respect is also at the heart of International Women’s Day, which was celebrated yesterday, and its 2017 campaign theme of #BeBoldForChange. I would like to acknowledge all the incredible women that play such an important role in the BGS community. With respect at the heart of the School, we can continue to play our part in creating a more gender inclusive world.
From the Head of Middle School, Jeremy Martin
This week in assembly we celebrated student leadership. Winter Sports Captains, Music Leaders, the Charity Committee, Student Voice and Library Committee proudly stood on stage as their names were announced and their badges presented by their peers. In total, there were more than 50 boys on stage, which was fantastic to see.
Part of our culture at Middle School is celebrating achievement and our assemblies provide a wonderful platform to publicly acknowledge the boys’ achievements in all areas – academic, sporting and co-curricular. Recognising accomplishments is not only important in the classroom; healthy, effective organisations, communities and families also make recognition and celebration part of their everyday functioning. Unfortunately, this practice can often be underused. We have all been guilty of moving onto the next challenge before we have taken the time to appreciate what we have just accomplished. We can also tend to focus on areas of improvement rather than celebrating strengths. The fast pace of our lives often means we lose sight of what is important – the opportunity to reinforce behaviours and actions that are worthy of celebration. Perhaps at the dinner table tonight you could take some time to celebrate your son’s achievements so far this year.
Teaching and learning
The wonder, the awe, the excitement
When did you last see something that was interesting? Why was it interesting? Did it captivate your inner sense of intrigue? Learning about science from a sense of intrigue and the unknown often develops learning that is more personalised and applicable to the lifelong learning process.
We often see boys that are excited about conducting practical experiments in Science and they all love the thought of making an ‘explosion’. What is it about the explosion that is so exciting? Is it the unknown possibilities of what could potentially happen? Developing boys who want to know more about why things occur and ask tricky questions is the first step to a greater love of learning, as this can often lead to persistence and perseverance of wanting to know why and understand how.
This term, we are learning all about chemistry in Science. I encourage you to ask some questions about facts that your son might now know that he did not before. It would be great to sit down and watch some of the experiments on YouTube that we have conducted, it might just spark some wonder, awe and excitement that he can share.
On Tuesday many boys were quite intrigued about the pumpkins that we have been growing outside the Science classroom as they found out about how male and female flowers control the pollination and fruiting process.
Female pumpkin flowers:
Male pumpkin flowers:
This week the work of women in the Philippines, to formulate and express a useful encounter with the realities of life in their country, formed the basis of the service or chapel experience for the Middle School.
Each year the World Day of Prayer takes place on the first Friday of March. This year, voices from the Philippines orchestrated a presentation exploring the theme “Am I being unfair to you?”.
The Bible text was the story of the workers in the vineyard: Matthew 20:1-16. The opening verse reads as follows:
“For the kingdom of heaven is like a landowner who went out early in the morning to hire workers for his vineyard. He agreed to pay them a denarius for the day and sent them into his vineyard.”
One would be right to ask what does the situation of the Philippines or stories of vineyards and workers being paid a denarius have to do with teenage boys in Brighton. Everything! Particularly if they want to listen to the world around them and be prepared to take their place in the future to be agents of change and possibility.
Today we plant seeds. These seeds are awareness of the women who cry out for justice and are unafraid to tell their story, to anyone prepared to listen. These seeds are stories of a God who hears the cry of the trampled and abused and does not let the cry go unheeded.
The World Day of Prayers declares there are workers prepared to go into the vineyard and payment is not the issue.
Fr Tony Poole
APS Summer Sports leaders
Congratulations to the APS Summer Sports Captains who were presented their leadership badge at Assembly on Wednesday by our Middle School Sports Leader, Josh Badge.
L-R: Max Kortge (Swimming), Harley Chessells (Tennis), Tony Ma (Badminton), Josh Badge, Leo Read (Touch Football), Ryan Agg (Cricket), Callum Bond (Diving)
Absent: Harrison Chapman (Sailing).
Middle School notices
F1 School National Finals, 2017
BGS was represented by Liam Konidaris, Andrew Wang, Billy Pearson and Maxim Christodoulou in our first ever appearance at the F1 in School National Finals 2017 held at the Titanium Stadium Arena in Adelaide.
The team finished a commendable 7th out of 14 teams in their division and placed first out of the Victorian teams, having beaten two teams that had previously finished ahead of BGS at the State Finals. Many of the other teams have been competing for over 10 years with several having already represented Australia at the World Championships.
The feedback they received from university professors, judges and industry experts was invaluable. The boys were absolutely amazing throughout the week and are now highly motivated to come back again next year and aim for higher honours.
Jamie Watson and Chris Tze