Senior School Report - May 2, 2019
author: Hamish McCrum
Welcome back to school after a timely Easter break. I hope that families were able to enjoy their time together with some relaxation and reflection. As we enter into Term 2 and the Ballarat winter starts descending, many students and families become aware that each school year is more of an endurance event than a sprint. It is incredibly important that students at all year levels are conscious of steadily acquiring the content knowledge and skills to improve in each subject, and developing the habits and behaviours which will allow them to be successful into the future. A student who has fallen behind will often state that they need to work harder, and we will agree with them. Then with the best intentions they are unable to sustain their efforts.
Some basic hints to all students would be:
1. Make a start on a big task, you will be glad you did (or have). It is then easier to continue.
2. Don’t wait until you feel like doing your homework – very little will get done. Instead, allocate time as you would to a part time job or sport training, set aside the time. Make a reasonable schedule and stick to it.
3. Don’t kid yourself that you can be effective studying while also giving some of your attention to your phone or laptop – unless directly related to what you are doing, put them in another room.
4. Understand that you and your time are valuable. You are investing in your future.
5. Do practice questions rather than just reading and highlighting.
6. Appreciate your progress. If you are better at something today than you were a week ago, give yourself a pat on the back and see if you can be even better next week, or have improved in something else. This is much more productive in the longer term than trying to beat another student.
7. Get 8 hours of sleep each night.
8. Don’t play any computer games Mr McCrum would not play.
At the time of writing we are gearing up for Edmund Rice Day. It is a day of celebration and a chance for students to enjoy each other’s company and the company of their teachers in a relaxed setting. It is also a day when we donate some money to various charitable organisations, some local and some global. This in itself gives the students the opportunity to be doing something of value for those less fortunate. The benefits to the students who embrace this are: the fostering of their empathy – very important if they are to become socially constructive adults and are to go on to enjoy positive personal relationships; the feeling of self-worth that is gained by helping others – “if you want to feel good about yourself, do good things”; and finally the gratitude for your own life situation that can come from considering life from the perspective of somebody less fortunate.
On Thursday May 16 our Year 10 boys will experience “One Night of Homelessness”. In this they will learn about the scenarios that can lead to homelessness and gain an appreciation that it is rarely all the fault of the individual, experience some of the discomfort of sleeping rough (without the lack of safety which makes the experience less real), and Friday they are free from school to recover. Even with the physical discomfort, this is an enjoyable and memorable night.
Congratulations to our VCE Theatre Studies students who put on a great show on Tuesday evening. 19 boys from Years 10 to 12 performed Love and Information (by Caryl Churchill). All 19 boys were superb. Flynn Grigg and Spencer Dunne were particularly entertaining with the “Mystery of the umbrella”. Congratulations to their teacher, Monique Allen for choosing a piece where all 19 boys could shine, and assisting them to do so. Many thanks also to all those who worked behind the scenes to make things work.