Hope in what you cannot see
Welcome to the College for 2017. As a staff, it has been so wonderful to get back into teaching, learning and relating. As noted in the assembly on the first day, there has been a lot happening at the College over the Christmas break - painting, new carpet, TV screens, AppleTV units, and even a new teacher! I especially welcome our 40 new students. There are new students in each and every one of our classes. We look forward to getting to know you and helping you thrive in your learning.
I trust you have great anticipation about what we will achieve together at the College this year. Positive anticipation is a great thing. As we anticipate with a positive attitude, we are motivated about the future and develop hope in what is to come. I spoke to students about having ‘hope in what you cannot see’ at the Whole School Assembly in Week 1.
Sometimes we struggle to hope in the future. That may be because our current situation is incredibly difficult or because our past experience is painful and troubled. This can leave us feeling ‘hopeless’ or doubting that something will work out. The fact is, we cannot control all the events of our lives and, at times, we all struggle with the belief that things will work out. We speak to our students regularly about Jesus being the only true hope we can rely on.
I have been challenged lately to expand my expectations of the future, not because my vision of the future has been negative, but because God seems to be saying that my vision for the future is not big enough. God is stretching me to trust in what I cannot see or imagine. That makes me nervous, but deep down my experience tells me that I can trust Him.
I trust that you too are encouraged and challenged by the following verse.
“Enlarge your house; build an addition. Spread out your home, and spare no expense!
For you will soon be bursting at the seams.”
What a great statement by God to you and I about living a life of reliance and trust in His provision and plan. He desires that we live a good, deep and rich life.
This year, we will continue to encourage your children to have a big and positive vision for their future and their situations.
Every three weeks our students receive a new memory verse. We begin 2017 with a verse from Paul’s letter to the Romans that reminds us that there is only one way to salvation and that is through Jesus, the risen Saviour and Lord.
If you declare with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you profess your faith and are saved.
The first few weeks of the school year is an important time of establishing - for parents, teachers and students. In particular, it is important for all of us to establish routines, understandings and attitudes. As we all settle in to the year, there is much to be excited about. I encourage students in particular to establish open and clear communication and to increasingly take responsibility for your learning.
How do students establish?
- Make sure they have mastered the College technology processes (Year 5+)
- Ask clarifying and inquiring questions of teachers
- Complete homework tasks
- Use your Student Diary as an organisational tool
- Email your teacher a question if unsure of homework
- Make sure your uniform is ready the night before
- Choose an attitude that will help you grow in learning and relationships
Week 1 Learning
It makes the heart jump to see out students getting straight into learning.
Welcome Miss Moore
We are very excited to welcome Miss Belinda Moore to the College. Miss Moore is teaching our Stage 2 (Yr 3/4) class. She has already shown herself to be vibrant and engaging with students, colleagues and parents. As you have the opportunity, please do introduce yourself to Belinda and welcome her to the College.
The Robots have arrived
A few fortunate students have had the opportunity to play with our three new robots. We are planning an official launch of the robots and the associated learning opportunities for our students later this term. We will let you know when a date has been finalised.
Welcome to 2017!
Gosh, it’s good to hear the happy buzz of our high school students!
Schools without students are uninviting places, so it’s little wonder that teachers are always genuinely excited for classes to begin. Our students have settled quickly into the new school year and are already producing some quality work.
We extend a warm welcome to all our new students and their families and look forward to getting to know you better.
Our Pastoral Care (PC) Teachers for this year are:
Year 7 - Mr Vincze
Year 8 - Mr Perry
Year 9 - Mrs Meredith
Year 10 - Mrs Tydeman
Your child’s PC Teacher is a key advocate and supporter of your child in their learning. They are also a key point of contact for parents relating to all general school matters.
BYO Devices – Reminder to High School Students
Students are reminded that they must bring their devices to class every day. Please make sure that devices are fully charged. Many of our textbooks are digital and therefore require students to have access to their own technology each lesson.
Schoology – Learning Platform
Schoology is our digital learning platform. Every high school student has access to Schoology and has received instructions on how to locate materials placed on it. All homework tasks and Assessment Tasks are placed on Schoology. Teachers may also upload textbook material and worksheets.
Ask your child to take you on a guided tour of Schoology and don’t forget to check in regularly to see all the exciting learning that’s occurring in our classrooms.
Grit! Passion & Perseverance!
In Pastoral Care this week, we spoke to high school students about ‘grit’. A significant study undertaken by psychologist Angela Duckworth showed that a child’s ability to do well both at school and in life depends on much more than the ability to do well on a test or to learn quickly. She determined that the key to success in life is GRIT - a combination of passion and perseverance.
The study concluded that grit is a far greater predictor of success than IQ. The message for students as they begin the school year is simple:
- Commit to finishing what you start.
- Rise from setbacks – we all make mistakes. Humans are creatures of habit. If you quit when things get tough, it gets much easier to quit the next time.
- Success means sustained and sometimes unpleasant practice - gritty people persevere. Stick with your goals!
Straight into Learning
Even though students may tell us they wish they were still on holiday, the way they have all knuckled down to hard work hints that perhaps they really are pleased to be back where their brains are being challenged.
Here is one student’s first paragraph for 2017. I can’t wait to see the development in students’ writing over the course of the year.
After so long without it, I am stunned by the warmth of the sun’s rays. No longer does it leach my heat but instead it gives to me. The pearly rays of the sun play on my eyelids, the air smells earthy and rich as the drooping plants now boast of their new-found youth. My deep calm breaths now invisible as I listen to the birds chirp and sing as they are more active in the mid-morning sky. Still clouds linger as I stretch out my hands and tilt my face upward, as if the sun was too much to handle. (By Cooper Toshack)
Events in Term 1
This Term, as always, begins with sun, warmth (and ultra humid) weather. Our big three events begin on Valentine’s Day with our In-House Swimming Carnival held at the Singleton Gym & Swim Pool. This is shortly followed by the Hunter Region’s Christian High School’s Touch Footy Gala Day, and then finally the Zone Regional Swimming Carnival at the Mingara Recreation Centre on the Central Coast.
First up of course is our In-House Carnival. Please let me encourage all of our parents and students to come along, join the fun and dress up in your house colours. Go crazy with costumes, bring your best (or worst) green, blue and red outfits and cheer your teams on!
Even if swimming is not your favourite sport, or a sport your child is not confident in, it is a required school event for attendance purposes. We would love to have everyone there, supporting their house teams, growing in the spirit of the school, and the spirit of sportsmanship.
We are very conscious of ensuring the safety and well-being of all students. If your child has a medical condition of which we are currently unaware, or your child’s management plan has changed since enrolment, we would greatly appreciate an update of your child’s records. Even the knowledge that your child now wears spectacles can help us support you.
If your child needs to take ANY form of medication at school, it must go directly to the Office. Please make sure the medication is clearly labelled with your child’s name, the name of the medication and clear instructions.
Thank you for your assistance and cooperation as we care for your children.
Congratulations to our holiday readers. Thank you for sharing your thoughts on the books you read over the break. Reading for pleasure really is so important and has such a huge impact upon one’s life outcomes that we want each of our students to read for pleasure each day.
E-Safety - School Photography Information for Parents
Office of the Children’s eSafety Commissioner is a government agency that provides guidelines for the safe and positive use of technology. The following guidelines are recommended to keep students safe, and to ensure respectful practices concerning the use of social media.
When taking photographs or recordings at school or school events and your images include other identifiable persons please:
- Crop out other students or seek the permission of the student or (for students under 16) his or her parent before posting online.
- Do not tag or name the person without permission.
- If a parent or carer requests that you do not circulate an image of their child to others, please comply with the request.
- Please seek the permission of our staff to photograph or record their activities at school.
For more esafety tips visit: https://www.esafety.gov.au/esafety-information .
Nut & Egg Free School
As we have children at Australian Christian College who are highly allergic to nuts (anaphylactic) and eggs, we request that no nuts, products containing nuts (including spreads such as Nutella) or eggs be brought to school. Thank you for supporting us in keeping all our students safe.
There is a bunch of excited volunteers in the canteen on Wednesdays. Led fearlessly by Michelle, they have produced a new menu including some old canteen favourites with a bunch of healthy and freshly made lunch options.
Children should deliver their lunch orders to the canteen on Wednesday morning.
If you are able to assist in the canteen on a Wednesday, even if it is once per term, please contact Michelle to arrange a date.
School photos will take place on Thursday 23rd February. It is important to have all students at school on the day dressed in full summer uniform. Male students are asked to bring their winter uniform tie to be worn during the photos.
Can all parents please take note of the instructions below.
Online photo ordering: Portrait Patch
Proceed to http://www.portraitpatch.com.au/sydney and click the "order online" button.
On the next screen enter 1238 for the "shoot code".
Follow the online instructions.
If you have any questions, please don't hesitate to ring Jeff on 0412 884 289 or email Jeff on [email protected] .
PLEASE NOTE : Sibling orders MUST be entered by 8pm the day before photo day.
Term 1: 11th October - 7th December (9 week term)
College Swimming Carnival:
- 14th February
- K-2 from 9am to 11am
- Yr 3-10 for the whole day
College Photo Day: Thursday 23rd February
Touch Footy Gal Day (secondary): Tuesday 28th February
Yr 7 Vaccinations: Tuesday 7th March
Zone Swimming Carnival: Thursday 9th March