Welcome to Week 8 as we continue in lockdown. I have been speaking to staff and students about dealing with uncertainty and focusing on what we know.
What we know:
- that many students are working hard and making very pleasing progress in their subjects
- that teachers are also working very hard to provide engaging and effective lessons.some students and families are finding online learning challenging
- that many parents and carers are enjoying the privilege of watching online learning. It is a rare privilege to be in a classroom and this is certainly an opportunity to see students and teachers in action.
- that the Year 12 Graduation Mass has been postponed to a date in Term 4 yet to be confirmed.
- that the last day of this term and the first day of next term (September 17 and October 5) will still be pupil free days with no classes on those days.
I had the privilege of joining Mrs Cronin and Mr Quinn’s Year 9/10 online iSTEM classes today. It was wonderful to see the high student engagement and depth of learning as students were challenged in their bridge building skills. Mrs Hibbert, Mrs McInerney and I were all guest teachers and were not nearly as talented as the students in this challenge!
Mr Andrew Fouracre and Mrs Rayleigh Keith announced that they will be taking up positions at St Paul’s Secondary Catholic College in Kempsey next year. Andrew has taught Maths and Science and been a member of the College Leadership team in the role of Director of Studies. Rayleigh has taught Science and been the Leader of Science. The staff and students will greatly miss both of them for their professionalism, quality teaching and leadership and friendly and generous natures. We wish them all the best for the next step in their careers.
This beautiful prayer was shared with staff at morning briefing on Monday by Miss Chen and I thought I would share it with everyone.
Prayer for a New Normal
The World as we knew it is gone, and for what feels like such a long time we have
experienced so much hardship during this Pandemic.
As we prepare to walk into the future we pray for the "new normal" to come.
May our hearts be unified in You more than ever.
May the tender moments of seeing someone again in person be all the more rich and treasured.
May the reunions, interactions, and moments ahead be held in such intentionality and
may we turn to You in sincere gratitude.
Help us to come out of this Pandemic better, not bitter.
Help us to become more considerate of others, more mindful of how we can help one another, and how we can serve You and Your children well.
We thank You that no matter how dark the night may get, there is the hope of the dawn to come.
Please do not hesitate to contact me if you have any questions or concerns.
Well done to everyone for the work you are doing in the online learning environment. It’s not easy but I have been impressed with how well the majority if students are engaging with their learning.
There are a few who haven’t really engaged and teachers and House Leaders will be contacting home about this; if parents are worried about their child’s progress as well, please contact the school.
However many teachers are allocating house points to acknowledge the great work students are doing in many different ways. Technology has allowed us to use many platforms for learning, although we sure will be glad when everyone can be back at Hennessy.
We have had to be adaptable so have the following changes:
- Year 11 exams will be weeks 1 and 2 next term either on line or face to face (depending on when lockdown ends)
- Yr 12 will engage in both online and then a week and a half of face to face revision to prepare for the HSC exams which will now commence 9th They have received their Trial results and can request further feedback.
Currently we will be following the instructions from the NSW government about the return to school and will continue to plan for circumstances that may change very quickly.
Remember to take time for rest as well and too much screen time is not always great and it’s OK to go for a walk or do some activities outside as the weather improves. And of course, ask for help if you need it.
YEAR 11 SUBJECT SELECTION
Any student that I did not see should email me so we can sort subjects if possible – Sharon.firstname.lastname@example.org although I can catch them when we return face to face.
Assistant Principal - Teaching and Learning Director of Studies
SHARON HIBBERT ANDREW FOURACRE
The Hennessy community is much more than the bricks that make up the school, it is the people. The lockdowns have highlighted the strength of our community. As part of continuing to build this community, college House Leaders will be contacting every family, to touch base and offer support. They will be ringing from home so you may see “No Caller ID”. I like many people won’t take these calls (As I don’t have any distant relatives overseas who have won a lottery) House Leaders will leave a message. Our house leaders can be contacted by email:
McAuley - email@example.com
Gallagher - firstname.lastname@example.org
Nagle - email@example.com
Year Assemblies – Next Tuesday the House Leaders and the Captains will be hosting year assemblies via Teams. This will be part of SWS and all students are required to be online. This is also an important part of staying connected as a community.
As a parent of 3 teenagers based at home at the moment, I appreciate the stress of balancing work and attempting to get them to log on and be actively involved in their learning. I have been encouraging the students that I have spoken to this week to ensure that they are sitting at a desk or a workspace and not lying in bed. While they may be working, lying in bed can reset their biorhythms and will make it hard for them once we return to face-to-face teaching. https://au.reachout.com/articles/5-steps-to-study-success
At this stage the 2022 Northern Territory Immersion will be still going ahead. We are currently seeking feedback on how we can progress now that we are in lockdown, and how this will affect payments and so on.
Please look out for each other and do not hesitate to contact the College with any concerns you have.
Stay safe and hopefully, we will see you soon
Remote Learning and Minecraft
Lockdown has been the perfect time to make the most of using Minecraft in our classes. Minecraft Education is a platform that has been available for the last 5 years and has specially designed ‘worlds’ aimed at teaching a range of content.
The Year 9/10 iSTEM Elective class has been using Minecraft with Mr Quinn and Mrs Cronin over the last two weeks to take their bridge building skills into a virtual world. Today, the two iSTEM classes competed in a bridge building challenge with Mrs Holding and other staff watching along and staff will judge the final winner.
Year 7 Science has also explored Extinct Species in a specially created Minecraft world they travelled through, which highlighted a range of species that have become extinct. They then created a portfolio after researching these species.