From the Head of the Junior School

From the Head of the Junior School

Dear Parents and Friends of the Junior School,

The Year 6 PYP Exhibition was a stunning success for the boys. The learning process undertaken across the last five weeks but commenced whilst in remote-mode has been unique. The boys displayed agency for their learning, organisation for managing their time and initiative in collaborating with experts and mentors. This culminated in Monday evening’s hosting of on-line group interviews where boys fielded questions about their individual inquiries and their growth as learners. It has given the boys a unique learning experience and, hopefully, great confidence. Thank you to each parent who supported and ‘interrogated’ their own son and other boys. Exhibition is always a high point in the year. Like everything else, it has been so different this year, more challenging in many ways, yet also more rewarding in many ways as well. The presentations are online and available to view here and all boys are to be congratulated on their outstanding and mature interaction with their issues, sources and one another. The mentors and teachers, especially Miss Jabaji, Mrs Tredinnick, Mr Hoare, Mrs Ormes and Mr Karagiannis are especially thanked for their encouragement, guidance and assistance. As all will appreciate, the effort to produce this on-line Expo has gone well beyond the usual, even for Exhibition, and speaks volumes of the commitment and dedication of the boys and teachers to overcome any obstacles this year.

It is a pleasure to make available to our community, the Junior School Visual Arts Showcase. The volume and quality of pieces produced by the boys pre-lockdown is extraordinary, has made for bright and vibrant decoration of our corridors, and has been too enjoyable not to share! We are disappointed that parents and guests have not been able to visit the building to appreciate the colour, life, and creative expression in our art, and witness the product of the hard work of the boys and Visual Arts staff. However, you can access a showcase of the artworks via this link. Boys will bring home their individual pieces of art in the final week of this year.

Year 5 boys are readying themselves for assuming the mantle of Junior School leadership. I have spent some very enjoyable time over the last week reading a considerable number of letters from the boys supporting their application for School and House leadership positions. I was very impressed by the maturity, humility, service attitude and self-awareness that were communicated in the letters. The boys had the opportunity to communicate these ideas to boys and staff via speeches made at virtual House meetings this week…again the quality was very high. I have also been involved in observing the boys and discussing each application with staff. It is a joy to participate in conversations where the boys’ characters and talents are spoken of so positively. Next year’s School and House Captains are announced at Prize Giving. All boys in Year 6 have much to offer and further positions of responsibility are allocated at the beginning of next year.

Also this week, eight talented Year 5 musicians auditioned for the Donald Holder Scholarship, awarded to a musician for his final year in primary school. Congratulations to Austin da Silva, Ethan Soo, Jacob Chan, Justin Tsia, Jordan Buultjens, Kai Pham, Luke Holani and Roman Urbano on the splendid concert they put on for the Year 5 boys and adjudicators. Again, the recipient is announced at Price Giving.

The Science Teacher Association Young Scientist Awards have been announced this week and we are delighted that Oliver Tucker (6J) is one of three Year 5-6 recipients of the prize for best Invention/Innovation. Oliver has designed a biodegradable gelato spoon and is commended for his application to problem solving to improve the future of humanity. Well done, Oliver!

Oliver T with his Science Prize

The twenty boys who will become next year’s Kindergarten class spent this morning with Mrs Bowden and Miss Regan (and our frogs) having their second orientation experience. We look forward to next Friday when over forty boys in Years 3-6 2022 will have their New Boy Orientation Morning. I am sure all members of the Trinity community will welcome the new boys and families to the Junior School family when the opportunity presents itself. Also next Friday, our Year 6 students will have a second orientation experience, a day in Middle School exclusively for boys moving from the Junior and Preparatory Schools. The day will have a sporting theme but also be a chance for the boys to hear from Middle School staff, the Deputy Head Master and prefects. Whilst the boys are ready for the step up to high school, it is also very natural to be excited, nervous and uncertain. Orientation experiences are designed to help boys approach the upcoming change with a positive attitude, answer their many questions and ease any fears.

We are very excited to be able to hold our Swimming Carnival next Tuesday, or three ‘mini-carnivals’ in cohorts. It will be lovely to have a competitive House event and I am sure that the boys will show House spirit and support of their mates across the three cohorts. We are pleased that our keen swimmers will also get the opportunity to compete for records and Championships, especially given that this was not an opportunity afforded our runners in Term 3. Some strong Year 2 students completed timed swims today at the conclusion of their Learn to Swim programme so that they can be considered for the Under 8 Championship along with the Year 3 boys. Boys in Years 3-6 will wear sport uniform with House T-shirt on Tuesday.

Parents and boys will be made aware of 2022 class placements via letter that will be brought home during next week. These letters should be unopened when they reach you! Parents are reminded that the School considers class allocation decisions very carefully in the context of serving the learning needs of all students in a year group and as such is not in a position to satisfy individual requests for particular teachers. Please note that satisfaction with a teacher from previous years is not a compelling reason for the School to allocate another year for your son with that teacher if they have since moved grades.

Parents in Year 4 will have earlier this week received a link to the BYOD (Bring Your Own Device) Overview with details about their son moving from using a school-provided device to purchasing their own Chromebook for Years 5-6. I remind you that your son will need his own device from the commencement of school in 2022. If you did not receive notification about this, please follow this link and contact Mr Karagiannis if you have any clarifying questions.

If you need new items of uniform for 2022, the Uniform Shop will be open for fitting appointments on the following dates:

  • Thursday 9th December, Friday 10th December (between 8am-4pm), and Sat 11th December (between 9am-3pm)
  • Monday 13th December – Friday 17th December (between 9am-2pm)
  • Monday 10th January 2022 (between 9:30am-3:30pm) until the start of Term 1, 2022.

Due to COVID restrictions, fittings are by appointment only. Of course, items can also be purchased on-line and delivered to students in Junior School until the end of term.

In previous years, the Junior School community has contributed generously to Anglicare’s Toys and Tucker Drive. This year, COVID safety necessitates that gifts be purchased on-line rather than delivered to school. Families wishing to contribute can do so via this link. We will still be encouraging generosity and kindness to others this Christmas so all boys will be writing/decorating cards in their final Chapel service next week to then be distributed via local charities to members of the community for whom Christmas may otherwise pass without community connection.

There are still many events in the final two weeks of the year:

  • Years 3-6 Swimming Championships – next Tuesday
  • Year 6 Orientation Experience 2 – next Friday
  • Prize Giving (Years 3-6) – 6 December (9.30am): the event will be live-streamed to parents and recorded.
  • Year 6 Parent & Son Dinner – 6 December: at Doltone House
  • K-2 Christmas Service – this service will be pre-recorded and made available on-line in the final week.
  • Year 6 Valedictory Service – 7 December (1pm-2pm): one parent (fully-vaccinated) will be able to attend this service, which will be streamed for other adults and classes in Years 3-5 and recorded.
  • Fun Day – 8 December: games and activities at school for Kindergarten – Year 5 and an excursion for Year 6. This is the final day for Junior School students.
  • Year 6 Allwell Testing – 9 December (8.20am-12.30pm)

Congratulations to Miss Kelly who gets married this weekend on the South Coast and will return next week as Mrs Bradfield (although she will be Miss Kelly to her class for the rest of this year).

Mark Dunn | Head of Junior School

In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was with God in the beginning. Through him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made. In him was life, and that life was the light of all mankind. The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it.

John 1:1-5

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