Waratah Weekly - Term 3, Edition 7 - Friday, 3 September 2021
- Message from the Headmaster
- From the Deputy Headmaster's Desk
- Pastoral Matters T-12
- Pastoral Matters - Years 5-8
- Performing Arts News
- ACHPER Secondary PDHPE Teacher Award
- HSIE News
- Library News
- Primary News
- Baby News
- Employment Opportunites
- Enrolment News
- Church Services
- Pretend Headmaster
Message from the Headmaster
This week at the College we have been discussing how we can promote good health and wellbeing for our students, staff and families. Our Secondary students are being encouraged to get away from their devices and engage in some physical activities on Friday afternoon this week. Our Primary students who are 'on-campus' have physical activity breaks built into their day.
Many of us are tied to our devices now with remote work; online lessons, online meetings as well as our 'normal' daily work we complete in front of a screen. May I encourage each of you (myself included) to take a break from your devices this Friday afternoon and get involved in some physical activity. In addition to this, it is really important that we take regular breaks from our devices throughout the week. Even if this is just a 10 minute break to go for a walk, read a book, play a musical instrument or simply listen to some music. It is very easy to get caught up in our daily activity without really thinking about what we are doing, and before we know it, we have spent eight hours in front of a device.
Consider how you can intentionally include daily breaks into your work day, and encourage your children to plan for some healthy screen breaks also.
Mr Trevor Norman
From the Deputy Headmaster's Desk
In Praise of Fathers: The Place of the Modern Dad
Some of you would know that recently Mrs Croger and I became grandparents for the first time. Hard to believe when we look so young. Our son and his wife had a healthy little boy and we have been blessed. The fact that they live in Brisbane and we haven’t been able to see them or the baby has been disappointing. This is a situation that is likely to continue for a while.
One of the joyful aspects of the birth, is talking to our son and watching him through Zoom take on his role as a father. He is really enjoying the role and he is very ‘hands on’ in caring for our favourite grandchild.
Grose (2021) argues that fatherhood has been transformed from the breadwinner and disciplinarian role of the past to a far more complex framework. Here’s how:
A look at different cultures even within our shores shows there’s no one ‘right way’ to be a dad. Fathers have a strong biological urge to ensure their children’s survival, which drives dads to be protective, some to have high expectations and others to promote self-sufficiency. Fathers may differ in how they parent, but ultimately, we all belong to the same valued club. Fathers almost universally want what’s best for their child.
Being a dad is not given the same attention as motherhood. The parenting advice industry is often skewed toward mothers as the direct or primary carers. The lack of recognition can also at times be seen in the mental health field. It’s now recognised that men experience heightened anxiety at all stages of fatherhood, however, most simply suffer in silence because ‘that’s what men do.’ The recent advances in mental health promotion still have some way to go when it comes to fathers.
Playtime is crucial
Fathers have long been seen as the kings of play. Science now shows that play is a critical part of the fathering toolkit. Whether it’s engaging in rough and tumble play with toddlers, sharing pizza night with primary-school kids or laughing with teens over the latest cat video, dads bond best with their children through play. Oxytocin, the bonding chemical that promotes strong relationships is released most intensely for men when playing with kids. On the other hand, oxytocin spikes for women when prompted by affectionate activities such as stroking, cuddling and talking softly to kids. Activity is at the heart of effective fathering as it’s through play that many men do their best fathering work.
Part of team parent
‘I wish my partner raised children like me’ is a common parent comment. While usually uttered out of sheer frustration this comment misses the point that duplication isn't always efficient. Put simply, if one parent is the disciplinarian the family doesn’t need another. Better for the other parent to focus on nurturing, teaching or arranging daily timetables. In busy families it’s better to ensure all the parenting bases are covered rather than duplicating roles and leaving out important functions. Working together as one part of team will ensure that most of the needs of a child are met. Alternatively, if you are parenting a child on your own, stay connected with other families and reach out for assistance when required.
The school of dad
Traditionally, fathers have been heavily linked with children’s learning, but not necessarily of an academic kind. The reinforcement of values, real-world problem-solving and teaching for self-sufficiency have been the usual domain of dads. Recent studies show that dads can also positively impact their children’s academic achievement, but in different ways to mothers. While mothers are more likely to be involved in at home learning activities such as hearing children read and supervising homework, fathers are more likely to positively impact their children’s attitude to learning. According to American educational researcher William Jeynes, dads focus more (than mothers) on moulding and modelling correct mindsets and behaviours, which provide the foundation upon which children and teens can build their academic journeys. It’s this bigger picture focus where fathers can do their best work, particularly changing boys’ attitudes to women and giving their daughters the confidence to stand up and be heard.
Dads and kids’ development
If a father wants to positively influence children and teenagers, it’s important to ensure that their relationship is warm and supportive. While this may be at odds with men’s natural tendency to push children’s developmental boundaries, fathers should lean on their well defined ability to relate to their kids through play. As Australian educational leader Dr Tim Hawkes noted in his book “Ten conversations you should have with your son” dads who engage in banter and fun are better placed to discuss issues of real substance with their children.
Dads and resilience
Fathers who promote children’s self-sufficiency are well placed to develop resilience in their children. In fact, a key role for modern fathers is to ensure, as part of team parent, that their children can confront and overcome the hardships, frustrations and difficulties that life throws at them. This is done less by adopting tough, hard-nosed tactics, and instead allowing kids to take physical and emotional risks in the knowledge that they can return to a warm and secure base.
Dad is a social role
With children growing up in step, adaptive and single parent families, fatherhood has become less a biological and more a social role. As society changes and assisted parenting techniques continue to advance, whoever answers to father takes on importance in a child’s life. This is not denying the rights of a biological father, but rather acknowledges that for many children the person who shows up whether stepfather, relative or family friend, or even a single parent doing both roles, is the social father for a child.
As society changes the role of fathers is also shifting as well. While the place of a father in a child’s life has always been important, there’s never been a greater need for fathers to be supported in their role and to widen our view of what it is to be a dad.
Michael Grose (parentingideas.com.au)
Mr Ian Croger
Pastoral Matters T-12
Virtual Prayer Breakfast
On Thursday, 9 September the College will be holding our first ever Virtual Prayer Breakfast. This presents an opportunity to gather as a community (virtually) and hear God's word, pray for the College as well as National and International issues.
This is an event for staff, parents and Year 12 students. If you are interested in participating in this event, please email Mrs Cook on firstname.lastname@example.org
A Zoom link will be provided to all that register their interest.
This event will run from 7.40 am - 8.10 am Thursday, 9 September. It will replace the normal Staff Devotions on this morning to allow staff to participate. Please be in the Zoom Waiting from 7.30 am
Devotion - Matt Roberts - Faith under Challenge
Break Out Rooms - Prayer for the College - Pastoral Care Team staff will facilitate the Break Out rooms.
Time of Open Prayer - For our Nation and our World.
So grab your coffee and breakfast and come along to hear the word and be encouraged as a community. This is a great opportunity to pray and encourage one another.
Hope you can make it.
How to maintain family wellbeing during Lockdown?
The College has released the following video recording presented by College Educational Psychologist, Mr Mitchell Barnes focusing on strategies to support wellbeing in your family during lockdown. This will be available on the College website and can be viewed by parents at a convenient time to support families during this period.
Mr Liam Toland
Director of Pastoral Care T-12
Pastoral Matters - Years 5-8
What does the Bible teach us about community?
The bible tells us that we weren't created to be independent, autonomous, or self-sufficient. We were made to live in a humble, worshipful, and loving dependency upon God and in a loving and humble interdependency with others. We are relational because God is relational and we are created in His image.
Our lives were designed by God to be community projects. God teaches us to build each other up, hold each other accountable and strengthen our faith. The foundation of this is Christ; our unity in Him enables us through His power to live this way.
The importance of human connection in young people
Maintaining regular human connection and friendships are particularly important for young people. According to a survey conducted by Mission Australia last year, more than 8 out of 10 young people rate friendships as their most valued item in life.
We continue to be thrown challenges. There are many things outside our control, including rules, restrictions and the virus itself. But there are many things within our control that will give us a sense of calm and order. Staying connected means adapting to our new world order, being socially isolated while not feeling socially isolated.
Ways to stay connected
How are you keeping connected with others in your community? Students in the College are regularly being provided with ways to do this and we encourage you to get involved too. Each morning class teachers and Year Patrons are connecting with students and offering suggestions on how to connect virtually or with members of their household.
In conjunction with year based connection tasks, the College is encouraging students to take part in weekly lockdown challenges. These challenges gain House points and the results and positive actions of individuals can be used to spur on and encourage peers. Use these activities to connect the members of your household and do things together.
Here are some things you could try next week:
Wellbeing Challenge - Attitude of Gratitude
It is always important, especially In difficult times, to appreciate the things that we may take for granted. Gratitude is pausing to notice and appreciate these things. Did you know that practising gratitude for 21 days in a row can retrain the brain to look for positives in the world instead of negatives? By simply being grateful, children and young people can experience a greater sense of optimism, happiness and calm.
Ways to practise gratitude could look like:
- Creating a gratitude journal
- Spending time together as a family each day
- Generating a list of things you are thankful for
- Writing a poem or drawing a picture of the things you appreciate.
Students, Staff & parents can Walk, Run, Ride, Skate, Scoot or Skip and log your activity. Use an app such as Strava/Run Keeper or a GPS Watch to track and record your Km’s and provide a screenshot of your activity/activities over the week.
Check out the Drama, Music and Dance ideas shared by Mrs Talbot each week and how to submit them.
Submit your attempts at these challenges and stay connected.
Mr Stuart Houweling
Middle Pastoral Care Coordinator 5-8
Performing Arts News
Performing Arts Challenges
As promised, our Performing Arts Challenges are now available for students.
There is one Music option, one Drama option and one Dance option available for students in each age group (Junior Years, Middle Years and Senior Years). You may enter one or all of the options for your age group (individual entries only).
Appropriate attire, background, lyrics, words and behaviours are expected in all submissions. Submit your entry to Mrs Talbot by 3.00 pm Monday, 13 September.
Submission options: email your work or a link to your work to Mrs Talbot email@example.com or via Canvas if you are a secondary student (Student Resources 7-12 >Performing Arts>Performing Arts Challenges).
Please understand that we may use the footage and images uploaded on both the Performing Arts website and on College Social Media accounts, and may elect to use them for future promotional purposes.
Stay safe. Ensure you are properly warmed up and using equipment safely at all times. Remain aware of your surroundings at all times.
On the last day of Term we will be running a virtual Talent Quest for all students T-12.
All students will be able to submit videos of themselves performing for inclusion in Talent Quest (competition entry forms have been sent to parents via email).
- Junior Years entries up to 30 seconds (non-competition)
- Middle and Senior Years entries 2 minutes (competition)
Please contact Mrs Talbot, firstname.lastname@example.org, if you have any questions regarding Talent Quest.
Stay In Touch With Your Ensemble
All of our Ensemble Leaders are missing our fabulous performers and want to support our students to stay engaged with their rehearsals and each other during lockdown. Below you will find a summary of what is on offer for the various Ensembles, and the contact email address for the Ensemble Leaders should your child need support in this area. Please don't hesitate to contact Mrs Talbot if you need further support for your young performer, email@example.com
College Band - Mr Grant has been working to supply students with sheet music (via Canvas '7-12 Student Resources: Performing Arts: College Band' or physical supply). He will also be hosting a Zoom session for Ensemble members, firstname.lastname@example.org
Primary Band - Students already have their sheet music to rehearse with at home. Mr Denley will be setting up a class for this group using 'Essential Elements' which will provide them with further support. email@example.com
College Strings - Ms Bridge will be hosting a Zoom rehearsal for students. The link has been emailed to Ensemble members by Mrs Talbot on their College student email accounts. Ms Bridge will also be supplying students with sheet music via Canvas (7-12 Student Resources: Performing Arts: College Strings), firstname.lastname@example.org
Primary Strings - Ms Bridge will be hosting a Zoom rehearsal for students. This link has been emailed to ensemble members by Mrs Talbot on their College student email accounts. Ms Bridge will also be supplying students with sheet music via Seesaw, with the help of Mrs Barker, email@example.com
College Choir - Mrs Robertson has been working with students to learn 'You Will Be Found' from the Musical 'Dear Evan Hansen'. Mrs Talbot has placed both the backing track and sheet music for this song onto the Canvas course for this Ensemble to allow students to continue with their rehearsals (Years 7-12 Student Resources: Performing Arts: College Choir), alisonclairerobertson@gmail.
Primary Choir - Mrs Apps is working with Mrs Turner to set up a Seesaw course for Primary Choir. There will be a small selection of songs there for your child to practise with (one that they know and a fun one to learn), firstname.lastname@example.org and email@example.com
Bucketz - Mr Hopkins will be working to provide student access to bucketdrumming.net which has lessons and exercises for our bucket drummers to practise with (watch out for your wooden spoons and pots and pans), firstname.lastname@example.org
Dance Company - Miss Valente will be sending weekly Zoom links via email for Dance Company students. The rehearsal will remain on Tuesday afternoons from 3.00 pm - 4.00 pm, email@example.com
College Cheer - Miss Valente will be sending weekly Zoom links via email to Secondary and Primary College Cheer students. The rehearsal will remain on Wednesday afternoons from 3.00 pm - 4.00 pm, however, Primary students can finish at 3.30 pm, firstname.lastname@example.org and email@example.com
Stunt Group - Miss Valente will be sending fortnightly Zoom links via email to Stunt Group students. A day and time will be arranged, firstname.lastname@example.org
Photography Club - Please continue to work through the challenges being set via your Canvas course, email@example.com
College Musical - The College Musical is on hold for now, but don't worry, we will let you know when it is time to audition!
Mrs Sarah Talbot
Performing Arts Coordinator T-12
ACHPER Secondary PDHPE Teacher Award
As part of Health and Physical Education Day, the Australian Council for Health, Physical Education and Recreation (ACHPER), recognise outstanding PDHPE teachers. Mr Paul Burns, PDHPE teacher and Director of Teaching and Learning, received a highly commended in the Secondary PDHPE Teacher category for his promotion of active and healthy lifestyles. This is a significant achievement and worthy recognition of Mr Burns’ contribution to PDHPE for over 20 years.
Mr Joshua Hewitt
During Semester 1, students in Years 8 and 10 were given the opportunity to participate in both the Australian History and the Australian Geography Competitions.
In both competitions, students tested their historical and geographical skills and knowledge against students from all around Australia. The HSIE faculty are pleased with how the students performed, with a number of students at Wollondilly Anglican College performing to a very high level in the Competitions this year.
Student achievement will be recognised in a variety of different ways this year. The following students achieved at a Distinction or High Distinction level in the Australian History Competition
Hollie Byrnes, Dean Haddock, Jasmin Hemans, Laura Jefferys and Jessica Lee
Rhys Flaxman, Kylan Jones, Shaun Parasher, Scott Parnell, Lilian Riemer, Emmett Shafer, Danielle Shaw and Nina Winters
Holley Dvorak and Jessalyn Smiltnieks
The following students achieved at a Distinction or High Distinction level in the Australian Geography Competition
Cody Wyman, Eden Liddiard and Olivia MacDonald
Rheyen Britton, Riley Godden, Ha Sung Jung, Tane McDonald, Shaun Parasher, Jocelyn Peacock, Trevor Wardle and Joe Zervos
Liam Biggs, Jennifer Wales and Nina Winters
One student placed in the Top 1% for the Australian Geography Competition, congratulations to Anika Kirby.
The HSIE faculty greatly values opportunities like these where students can show their knowledge and understanding of the Humanities in a different setting we congratulate all students who took part in the Competitions in 2021.
Mrs Trudy Miller
Book Week Competition Winners!
Primary students took part in a series of competitions centred around CBCA shortlisted books for Book Week, over the last two weeks. Thank you to all those that took part in these competitions, we have some very talented students here at the College. Our winners will receive a selection of new books as prizes. Several students from each year group will also receive Merit Certificates in recognition of their work. Congratulations to our winners!
Transition: Lucas Benier-Alleaume
Kindergarten: Sienna Brand
Year 1: Isa Boland
Year 2: Estelle Galea
Year 3: Jess Simmons
Year 4: Rachel McKay
Year 5: Leah Dalrymple
Year 6: Arnhem Coles
Book Club Issue 6 Released - Order by Monday, 6 September
Book Club Issue 6 is now open and Home Delivery is available for parents for $7.50. This option must be selected at time of ordering. Order through the Loop App or at www.scholastic.com.au/LOOP
Here is a digital copy of the Issue 6 catalogue.
Secondary Book Review Competition closes Monday, 6 September: Search for a Library book you have read on the Library Catalogue - Oliver and write a review in the ‘Write a Review’ section. The best reviews will receive a book prize! The Secondary book reviews are due by Monday, 6 September.
Premier’s Reading Challenge ends Friday, 3 September 2021.
For more information, see the PRC Rules page.
Any question please contact the PRC Coordinator - Mrs Colombo firstname.lastname@example.org
Congratulations to all those students who have completed the Challenge already!
Mrs Justine Colombo
T-6 Science Days
For the next two Thursdays (9 and 16 September) Primary will have Science Days. This will still involve the usual timing for Zoom lessons. It will also involve some Science investigation. Details of the work students should do and the investigations that they will do will be communicated with parents and students through Seesaw. The investigations will be designed to be as simple as possible and require as little equipment or resources as possible.
English and Mathematics lessons will not occur for those days. We look forward to having students jump into some Science.
Ms Jacqui Huxtable
Director of Teaching and Learning T-6
Congratulations to Mrs Vernez on the safe arrival of Theodore Louis (First Photo)
Congratulations to Mrs Taylor on the safe arrival of baby Darius (Second Photo)
The College Headmaster is currently seeking applications for the following positions commencing 2022:
- Secondary PDHPE Teacher 7-12
- Secondary Mathematics Teacher 7-12
Apply online at www.wac.nsw.edu.au/employment
Applications close Thursday, 16 September 2021
Mr Geoff Adams
Students Leaving at the End of 2021
If your child will not be attending the College in 2022, please give written notice by the end of Term 3 so that your bond may be returned and to avoid Term 1, 2022 fees and charges, as agreed in the Terms and Conditions of Enrolment.
Should you have any further general queries, please do not hesitate to contact me on 4684 2722 or at email@example.com.
Year 7 2023 Sibling Applications
The Headmaster will begin reviewing places for Year 7 2023 siblings in the upcoming holidays. If your child is in this cohort, please send in their application ASAP to avoid disappointment. If your child is already enrolled at the College, they do not need to apply.
Application For Enrolment
Applications continue to pour in for 2022 and beyond, across all Year Groups, but especially our entry years of Transition, Kindergarten, Year 5, Year 7 and Year 11.
All current College families looking to enrol siblings for the coming years are encouraged to do so without delay to avoid disappointment.
Enrolment packs are available from the College Office or from the College website www.wac.nsw.edu.au
Mrs Kristy Biddle
Ph: 4684 2722
Staying connected in the Wollondilly Shire
During this time, it is important that we stay connected as a community. Due to the restrictions in the Wollondilly Shire, this cannot happen face-to-face. However, many churches in our local area still gather together online. For those within our community who have a faith, can I encourage you to keep meeting as a community of believers as it says in Hebrews 10:24-25 “And let us consider how to stir up one another to love and good works, not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another, and all the more as you see the Day drawing near.”
To those in the College community, we encourage you to consider attending a Church Service or Bible Study Group online. In these difficult times, you may be feeling isolated, burdened and even fearful. Because of this, we encourage you, even more, to connect to your local Church, to explore Christianity, to seek the peace and relief that Jesus can give you. It says in Matthew 11:28-30 “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.” There is no better time to seek and to come into relationship with Jesus than now. Below are some local Churches in the Wollondilly Shire and surrounds with their services and programs and contact information for any enquiries.
Wollondilly Anglican Church
Currently posting pre-recorded messages and services on their YouTube channel. https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC1LQDtFMRt1RFZQ8KhRC2kA
If you are interested in attending a Bible Study, or Youth Group and connecting with the community this way, please visit these links for more information
We also encourage you to check out their website to stay updated with any new information https://wollondillyanglican.org/
Contact them about any enquiries at
C3 Picton and Camden
Live-streaming their services on their YouTube channel:
If you would like to find out more information about C3 connect groups, please visit these links:
If you would like to know more information about C3 and keep updated please visit their website:
Contact them at:
Campbelltown Christian Community Church (C4)
Currently streaming their services on their YouTube channel:
Wollondilly Presbyterian Church
Currently streaming their services on their YouTube channel: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UClGGkiM_xP5rCdViW3uo6Xw/featured
They are also holding Church Zoom Calls at 9.15 am on Sundays, if you are interested in connecting to the community in this way, please visit their Facebook page for the links as well as updates, information and to contact about any enquiries.
Tahmoor Baptist Church
Gathering via Zoom on Sunday mornings, please visit their page for the Zoom link, as well as resources, other services, and updates.
If you are interested in attending a Bible Study, or Youth Group and connecting with the community this way, please visit this link for more information
Picton and Wilton Anglican Church
Currently streaming their services on their YouTube channel at 9.30 am on Sunday mornings.
I also encourage you to visit their website
To stay updated with information or to contact them about gathering groups and for any general enquiries, please click on the link below:
Most importantly, we encourage all to meet with God directly and personally through daily reading of The Bible and prayer. This is the best way to get to know who God is and further trust in him during this time. If you don’t have a Bible or don't know where to start, we encourage you to download “You Version” on your device, this is a great resource to assist you in your journey and relationship with God.
Staying connected in the Southern Highlands area.
Highlands Christian Church:
Highlands Baptist Church
Christian Leadership Prefects
Nerida Seidel and Ethan Schultz
WAC Kids Care
From time to time, families undergo trauma such as severe or terminal illness. There are short term support structures in place at the College to assist families during these times.
We have a collection of beautifully prepared meals that are ready for distribution for any families in need.
The WAC Kids Care Program offers support to families in the way of meals. Please contact Mrs Hay or Mrs Rockwell at the College. Confidentiality will be respected. If you know of anyone who may need meals at this time, please contact the College office.
Please note that the above is a service to the Community and items advertised do not necessarily carry the endorsement of the College. The College tries to be selective with what is advertised but cannot take responsibility. Please look into events advertised carefully.
Pretend Headmaster - Mason Juarez (KF) is proudly working hard on his Father's Day task ready for this Sunday.