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YEAR 7 CAMP – CAMP FEVER!

Camp is that special time and place where strangers become friends and friendships last forever; where good times become great memories! The Year 7s set sail for camp on Wednesday 17 February, kissing and hugging their parents goodbye and readying themselves for three days of teamwork, new friendships and fun. Classes 7GPC-02 and 7GPC-05 were the first to depart, braving the long hike to their campsite in the heart of Wallaroo. After a long drive, students refuelled and were straight into the activities with Active Education. They enjoyed pizza making, orienteering, and beach activities on a warm and sunny day.

7GPC-01, 7GPC-03 and 7GPC-04 followed shortly after, arriving at She-Oak Run in Finniss where they were welcomed by a scenic view of the river. The girls enjoyed a peaceful kayak along the river as well as many team building activities promoting new friendships. The highlight of the girls’ camps was the fashion show led by staff. Students got in touch with their creative abilities and showcased 2021’s most elaborate formal dresses that even Paolo Sebastian would be envious of. A special mention must go out to Ms Bertelsmeier who modelled a stunning, life-like ‘princess dress’ out of garbage bags – it was certainly a show stopper!

The Aldinga and Woodhouse boys ‘jetted in’ a lot quicker to their venues and raced into small group activities with a core focus on building relationships. The Aldinga crew enjoyed time at the beach, learning about beach safety whilst also catching a wave or two. Camp Woodhouse presented the boys with the famous ‘Challenge Hill’ which of course they all tackled with ease! Each activity was taken head on and nothing could hold the boys down. A special shout out must go to Mr Mosca who had the entire campsite singing along to some modern-day classics during their quiz night.

Some students shared a reflection of their camp experiences:

“One of our greatest highlights of Camp Woodhouse was Challenge Hill where we had lots of challenges, in and out of the water which was fun! The best challenges we tackled were the water activities, rock climbing and rope swing which was a lot of fun. All activities were led by Active Education and we really enjoyed the riddles and team building games. There was also so much food to eat which was all very tasty. We all had a fun time at Woodhouse, and we’d love to do it again.”Lachlan Marshall-Bates and Liam Atkinson (7BPC-04)

The Year 7 camp to Wallaroo was truly an experience we will all treasure forever. We did many fun and exciting activities including pizza making, geocaching, making bracelets, the tribal challenge, multiple beach related activities, hanging out with new and old friends. We had a blast down at Wallaroo! The food was also pretty good, our favorite meal was the apple crumble cake. The bus ride there was fun, but on the way back we were all exhausted and we all fell asleep. We are so grateful for the experience that our teachers had put so much effort into giving us. We hope all the other Year 7s had a great time too”. Harper Packenham and Eve Cardone. (7GPC-05)

“Aldinga Camp was enjoyable and everyone had a really good time doing all sorts of activities. Whether it was drenching each other with water or riding the waves at the beach, we all had a great time. Even though it was scorching hot, everyone had a good laugh, even the teachers! The beach activities were everyone’s favourite by far. The water was crystal clear, and the waves started to pick up towards the end of the day. After a long day at the beach everyone had a ‘chill out’ around the campsite and the most popular activity was the bouncy pillow. Camp was an amazing experience!” – Giuseppe Cardillo and Massimo Marrone (7BPC-02)

“Our class this year visited the She-Oak Run campsite for our Year 7 camp. Some of the activities we took part in were kayaking, raft building, tribal challenges, bonding activities, bracelet making and problem solving. Our amazing staff and teachers also guided us in some activities after dinner which included a garbage bag fashion parade, quiz night and milos for supper. We most enjoyed participating in the water activities as due to the hot weather and humidity we had extra time in the river. Our friendly cooks and Active Education staff helped to make our experience ten times better by surprising us with well-made meals and delicious cold zooper doopers for afternoon tea. Overall, we loved our camp experience at She-Oak Run and we would definitely recommend it for the students in the years to come”. – Sophia Chitti & Isabel Chrisakis (7GPC-04)

Mr Aldo Calo, Year 7 Director

ANTI- BULLYING AND HARASSMENT

Bullying behavior seriously undermines the Lasallian ethos of ‘community through the development of positive relationships’.  We strive to be an inclusive and respectful community where each individual is known, valued and cared for, enabling them to feel confident to explore their curiosities, flourish and fully realise their potential. The National Day against bullying is 19 March 2021. We are committed to dealing with any type of bullying across both campuses.

A definition of bullying: ‘Bullying occurs when typically someone is deliberately or repeatedly hurt by another person or group. Bullying can be psychological, emotional or physical and can take a number of forms including verbal, physical, cyber, racial, sexual or social.

What can you do about bullying?
Everyone has the right to feel safe and be free from bullying. Everyone has a responsibility to work against bullying and seek to stop it.

Who to report to?
Tell any trusted adult. This could be a class teacher, subject teacher, pastoral teacher, Year Level Director, school counsellor, sporting coach, Deputy Principal or Principal. You could also discuss this with your parent, caregiver, or an outside agency such as Headspace.

How to report and when?
Tell the trusted adult; who is bullying you, where it happens, when it has happened and how often it has taken place.  You are also able to email any instances of bullying to bullyingnoway@smc.sa.edu.au. Report any bullying to a trusted adult as soon as it happens, do not ignore it.

What we will do:
Listen and talk to the person bullied, respond to the information received and complete a Counter Bullying Portal on SEQTA.

We will agree to approach the matter in a way in which is restorative by nature, where possible, and investigate the claims being made and record the findings.

At times there may be negotiated consequences in place for the person who has been bullying.

At SMC we:
Use prevention, intervention and post intervention strategies.

Further information can be found on our Year Level Portals located on SEQTA or www.bullyingnoway.gov.au

Mr Matthew Williams, Deputy Principal – Pastoral

MORNING TEAL

On Friday 19 February, Year 11 students Harriet McClure (11PC-05) and Megan Adrian (11PC-05), accompanied by Ms Anna Porcelli, Mrs Lisa Baldwin and Ms Audrey Rangel, represented St Michael’s College at Senator Simon Birmingham’s ‘Morning Teal’. This was an event to raise awareness and funds to support women and their families affected by ovarian cancer. Speakers included Abbie Taylor who detailed her Aunt’s battle with the disease, and Associate Professor Theresa Hickey, who is working to see if the positive role of androgens in breast cancer may have an application to ovarian cancer. We were thankful to be invited to this event during February, Ovarian Cancer Awareness Month.

Ms Anna Porcelli, Year 11 Director

WELLBEING WALK

Ocean views and coffee, what a way to start the day! On Wednesday we kicked off the Wellbeing Walk for our Year 12 students. The aim of this initiative is to start the day in a relaxing and mindful way especially as the demands of their senior year begin. Although a bright and early start, our Year 12s were able to connect with each other along the way and enjoy a coffee as they sat by the sea. We look forward to continuing our walks each week.

Ms Elli Nicola, Teacher – Secondary

LASALLIAN YOUTH LEADERS  – FORMATION DAY 2021

The Lasallian Youth Leadership (LYL) program operates across almost every Lasallian School in our District of Australia, New Zealand, Pakistan and Papua New Guinea. This program has been offered at St Michael’s College for over 15 years. This year approximately 25 students from Year 10 and 11 have joined this fantastic leadership initiative.

On Friday 19 February the new LYLs attended the Formation Day at the Grange SLSC. This day is the first formal event for the LYLs, helping them develop the required skills and knowledge to carry out their leadership role. They not only learn more about each other and our founder, St John Baptist de La Salle, but also brainstorm ideas which we can hopefully implement in 2021.

Students reflected on their experience:

“The LYL formation day was a great experience for me, and all students who attended. This experience has allowed me to make new friends of varying ages and build upon my understanding and values on what it means to become a LYL. We performed many activities to help teach us these skills such as how different techniques can help with public speaking and what it means to be Lasallian. I’m looking forward to my future as a LYL and the new people I will meet.” Joel Grygus (10PC-04)

“On the formation day I learned what it means to become a Lasallian Youth Leader and the importance of the Lasallian history and how much of an impact it has on today’s modern education. There were many fun and educational activities including a presentation on the importance of being a Lasallian Youth Leader. The LYL formation day allowed me to know what to expect in my future as an LYL.” – David Levett (11PC-09)

We were very fortunate to have Mr Robert Dempsey, Director of Mission, Mr Andrew Spencer, Year 10 Director and Indigenous Coordinator, Mr Nicholas Flynn Year 10 Assistant Director, and Ms Thu Nguyen, Teacher, present on the day.

We are very thankful for old scholar, and now SALT (South Australian Lasallian Team) member, Jordan Tucker (2019) who also took the time to visit. Jordan expressed how fortunate she was to be part of the LYL program, and how she has developed vital skills through the opportunities within the program.

Overall the day was a great success, and we look forward to the exciting initiatives the LYLs will be a part of this year.

Miss Zani Bates, Lasallian Youth Minister

PEER SUPPORT LEADERS

On the morning of Wednesday 24 February, the Year 10 Peer Support Leaders ran their first session with Year 7 students. The focus was on building relationships and understanding respect. The leaders ran activities that gave the Year 7s the opportunity to think about respectful behaviours, and how to treat others with respect. Throughout the year, the Peer Support Leaders will continue to run sessions and act as Lasallian Big Brothers and Sisters for the Year 7 students, getting to know them and supporting them as members of the St Michael’s Community.

Mrs Joanne Howat, Year 7 Assistant Director

YEARS 7-9 LEARNING AND WELLBEING CHARACTER STRENGTH FOCUS

Week 5: Leadership

Cultivating Character Strengths produced by the Institute of Positive Education, suggests that leadership is “supporting others to be their best and making things happen.” While we can be inspired by evident leadership in novels such as The Hunger Games, in films such as The Lion King and in people such as Martin Luther King Jr., on the morning of Tuesday 23 February, I was inspired during Pastoral Care time when I visited Mr De Silva’s Year 8 boys’ pastoral classroom.

As I entered the room, Mr De Silva apologized for not addressing the strength of leadership yet (the week only began Monday and it was Athletics Carnival), but what I saw unfold really was a model of leadership, as is evidenced by the Institute’s definition above.

Mr De Silva shared a story about a family upon hard times from a 1971 news article and then spoke about his own family’s experience at settling in Australia at around that time. He invited students to reflect on their own family’s experience and to be mindful of the sacrifices made so that they might have the standard of living they currently enjoy. He went on to share a song about a previous American president – a leader who left a legacy. He concluded by connecting the entire experience with a prayer of hope and gratitude. Mr De Silva’s sharing of values and his vulnerability in sharing his personal story was indicative of authentic leadership and offered students an invitation to be their best and to follow his lead. He was role-modelling leadership the whole time!

Research tells us that effective leaders manage to acknowledge and harness the strengths of the people they lead. It’s about positively influencing others by organizing and encouraging them to accomplish goals, nurturing positive values and at the same time maintaining unity and cohesion. Not always an easy job!

Despite the challenge, effective leaders recognize that they themselves aren’t meant to have all the answers, but they create a space and afford opportunities so that their teams can flourish and be the best version of themselves.

Dr Brené Brown, bestselling author and researcher, believes that the connections we make with others is our purpose and meaning in life. In her book, Dare to Lead, Brown indicates that connections are possible when we have the courage to be ourselves. Embracing our vulnerabilities is a necessary part of this. For leaders, it’s important to show that vulnerability isn’t a sign of weakness. Admitting our short-comings, asking for help and embracing weaknesses shows others that we are all human. This humility allows others to connect with us and trust to follow our example. Leadership is intrinsically connected to gratitude, being a life-long learner, kindness, hope, appreciating our value and that of those around us, cultivating inclusion and belonging and leading from the heart. This was clear in Mr De Silva’s class and resonates perfectly with our vision at St Michael’s College.

There are many people who are strong and true leaders without a title or a badge. We see them every day. They lead by example without thinking about what’s in it for them. We too can do our best to develop the most authentic leadership we can, with or without badge or title. Each one of us is a member of the St Michael’s College inclusive and respectful community, where we strive to ensure that each person is known, valued and cared for, confident to explore their curiosities and flourish…to realise their potential and to be the learners and leaders of the world.

We began this week with outstanding examples of leadership at the Athletics Carnival.  I’m sure that if we look for them, the rest of the week will offer us other wonderful examples of, and opportunities for, authentic leadership in our classrooms, on the playing field, in our homes and in our places of work.

Have a wonderful week ahead!

Mrs Tonia Carfora, Year 7-9 Learning and Wellbeing Initiatives Leader

THE SAMMY D FOUNDATION

On the morning of Wednesday 24 February, all Year 11 students attended the ‘Impact’ presentation run by the Sammy D Foundation in the MacKillop Centre. Neil Davis, the father of a ‘one punch’ victim, discusses the story of how he tragically lost his only child to this cowardly act. Furthermore, he explained the harms associated with alcohol and other drugs, and how to ensure young people do not make poor choices when out socialising. Lastly, Neil challenged the cohort to look after themselves and their friends.

The Sammy D Foundation was established in Sam Davis’ memory to educate young people about the impact of violence, and the consequences it has on victims, perpetrators, bystanders, families, friends and the broader community.

The entire Year 11 cohort were deeply moved by Neil’s heartbreaking story and he undoubtedly provided the group with various tools for those most at risk of being impacted by violence.

Ms Anna Porcelli, Year 11 Director