From the Head of the Junior School

Dear Parents and Friends of the Junior School,

What a dynamic day of scientific fun! It was wonderful to see so many curious boys investigating, experimenting and doing hands-on activities. I was amazed at the resourcefulness of our scientists (young and old) to provide and attempt so many engaging activities, despite the impracticalities of doing so at home. Well done young scientists! And well done also to our older scientists who helped design and populate our National Science Week Canvas course with so many activities. I am sure there is enough to keep our keenest boys occupied into the weekend! Particular appreciation is extended to Mr Slabbert as Scientist-in-residence, Mrs Voysey as returning-Scientist, Dr Cross as guest-Scientist, Mr Karagiannis as Web-scientist, and Mrs Ormes as Kindergarten’s mad-Scientist! I hope the morning was energising and went off with a (metaphorical) bang in your house!

If you are yet to watch yesterday’s update video, please use the link below.

In addition, I also wrote yesterday about student etiquette during Teams sessions. In most cases, the students are to be commended on their consideration and turn-taking. Yet teachers are also noting some instances of behaviours that are distracting and unhelpful. Parents and boys are asked to ensure that:

  • Boys are on time to morning and afternoon check-ins as well as any other meetings or groups where attendance is required
  • Boys should be seated appropriately – lying on a bed is not a suitable location or posture
  • Eating does not occur during on-line meetings – it is not permitted in school lessons and there is more than enough flexibility in the remote school day to permit meals and snacks at other times
  • Pyjamas are not worn for school lessons – casual clothing is permitted. But, we think it is helpful for all boys to get themselves dressed before the morning Check-in.

It has been a great joy to be involved in the Reading Groups this week for boys in Kindergarten to Year 4. These look to have been enjoyed by boys and certainly have been by the staff who have supported the groups. We encourage parents who are actively supporting students with remote learning to take a step back during these groups. Even our youngest learners and those requiring the most support will be able to participate successfully without your assistance…that is the beauty of a small group with a teacher. Boys do not need Mum or Dad prompting them with difficult words…that is the teacher’s role. We know many of you are finding it draining juggling remote learning assistance with your other responsibilities. What better chance than to take 20-30mins to have a break, grab a cuppa and let your son have some time and space with his peers and teachers?   

Next Friday is an opportunity for all families to check-in with teachers via Teams for a Three-way Conference or Parent-Teacher Interview. If you have not already done so, please follow the instructions distributed in this week’s emails to book your conference. There will be no check-ins or class lessons next Friday. We ask all parents to use your judgement about whether to prioritise the special activities that will be posted by specialist teachers, or instead to use the day to allow your son to ‘catch-up’, have a rest or spend more time outdoors. 

Mark Dunn | Head of the Junior School

Praise be to the name of God for ever and ever; wisdom and power are his. He changes times and seasons; he deposes kings and raises up others. He gives wisdom to the wise and knowledge to the discerning. He reveals deep and hidden things; he knows what lies in darkness, and light dwells with him.

Daniel 2:20-22

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