This week is National Science Week! The theme for this year is ‘Glass: More than meets the eye’. The UN describes glass as one of the most important, versatile and transformative materials of history. Glass will continue to have an enormous impact into our future, not only for its many applications but also for the integral role it will play in sustainable development.
To celebrate Science Week and to learn more about glass, all the Year 8 students enjoyed an entertaining interactive show presented by Perform Education. Students learnt about the everyday uses of glass, its applications, how it is used in fibre optics/communications, its usefulness in medicine/healthcare and the sustainability of glass compared to plastics.
On Tuesday, each Year 7 class visited an inflatable Planetarium in Founders Hall. The Planetarium was illuminated with visuals which guided learning about galaxies, our solar system, the orbits of our planets, seasons and the phases of the moon.
Throughout the week, students engaged in a number of activities at lunchtime. On Monday, students were excited to learn about and observe a chemical reaction when making Elephant’s toothpaste. On Wednesday, Mr Alberton and Mr DeSilva presented a Liquid Nitrogen Show in the Turon courtyard. Students learnt how liquid nitrogen immediately changes state from liquid to a gas when poured onto the floor. Some other demonstrations included compressing balloons in liquid nitrogen, instantly freezing flowers, bananas and cucumbers which were then smashed with a hammer and creating a misty fog by pouring liquid nitrogen into water.
Within the classroom, a number of teachers celebrated the theme of Science Week by facilitating interesting activities teaching students about the uses of glasses. A number of students created kaleidoscopes and used them to observe some interesting visual effects. Other students learnt how light globes worked and created their own light globes. Within Pastoral Classes, students also participated in the morning quiz which tested their knowledge in a range of different areas of science!
On Thursday, Charlie Gibbons and Sofia Stravs were selected to compete in the State Finals of the South Australian Brain Bee Challenge. This challenge saw the students learn about Neuroscience and some of the idea’s researchers at Flinders University and currently studying. Students learnt how an electroencephalograph can be used to measure brainwaves and how this can be useful in the study of the brain. Students were also lucky enough to interact with a VR experience that researchers at the university had developed.
On Friday, a range of Year 10 and Year 11 students visited the Micro-X, ‘Seeing things differently’ Science Week event. At this event, students learnt about the importance of glass in microscopy, 3D printing in industrial settings, how Chemistry can save our environment and the use of X-rays and Nanotechnology. Students also had the opportunity to discuss STEM degrees and career pathways.
It has been an action-packed week where we have celebrated Science both in and outside of the classroom. I would like to take this opportunity to thank all of the teachers who have organised events, participated in events or supported students learning in science this week! I would also like to thank the students who have actively participated in Science Week exploring their curiosities and celebrating science.
Mr Jack Alberton, Acting Head of Science
ARCHANGEL THEATRE CO.
Earlier this year we launched a co-curricular theatre company at the College in response to a growing need from students for more opportunities to extend themselves in dramatic performance. We are called Archangel Theatre Co. (ATC) after our College patron, Saint Michael the Archangel, who is known as a spiritual warrior and champion for justice. As a company, we aim to create engaging and thought-provoking theatre and to support each other whilst achieving our best creatively.
Our amazing company logo was designed by Year 10 student James N, in collaboration old scholar Lisa Ling (2021). We also have a publicity manager, Year 12 student Megan A, who created our poster and promotional materials including an Instagram page. You can find us and follow our news and events by searching @archangel_theatre_co.
On Wednesday and Thursday of Week 4, we performed our first production ‘Girl Asleep’ by Matthew Whittet, which is a hilarious coming-of-age comedy set in the 1970s. The cast and crew were delighted to see members of the College community come along to the show and were thrilled to have a sold-out final night. We have an exciting new theatre project in the works and ATC plan to perform it as part of the 2024 Adelaide Fringe.
Ms Emily Burns, Drama Co-curricular and Events Coordinator
AFL MAX LEADERSHIP PROGRAM
Last Wednesday the College was fortunate to have AFL Max founder and former Crow, James Podsiadly, and Sam Rossi, AFL Max Programs and Education Manager, speak to our Year 8 students about the AFL Max 4QTR leadership program.
All Year 8 students will be participating in this program as part of their PE course this semester. This is an exciting opportunity for all students to explore their leadership potential as we work through the four pillars of ‘Me’, ‘Purpose’, ‘Connect’ and ‘Perform’. The program will involve in-class lessons, incursions facilitated by AFL Max staff, and conclude with a day session at AFL Max at the end of the year.
Mrs Sally Nicholson, Head of Department – Health & Physical Education
YEAR 9 STUDENT LEADERS
Last week during Year 9 Chapel service, the Semester 2 Student Leaders were presented to their cohort. We congratulate the following students on serving the College community and showing their character strengths of leadership, teamwork, creativity, perseverance, and humility.
9BPC1: Nicolas Montin and Lucas Santos Tait
9BPC2: Aidan Sbatella
9BPC3: Rayhan Anwari and Hayden Brooks
9BPC4: Henry Burke, Gabriel Mazzocchetti, Fletcher Mickan, and Acelin Vitale
9BPC5: Aiden Colella and Harrison Northeast
9GPC1: Mollie Noone, Ele Preka, and Hannah Timpani
9GPC2: Makayla Boden, Monika Krawczyk, and Isabella Kyriakides
9GPC3: Alana Fedele, Charlee Goble, and Emily Reimann
9GPC4: Annie McCleave and Harper Plummer
9GPC5: Amelia Boys, Kiara Didyk, and Tilly O’Regan
Ms Jessica Capitanio, Year 9 Assistant Director
YEARS 7-9 WELLBEING CHARACTER STRENGTH FOCUS
Week 4: Zest
Zest, as a character strength, refers to energy that propels us forward in whatever our endeavours might be. When we approach life with zest, we show excitement, energy and stronger willpower to get the job done and do it well. According to the VIA website, “those who are high in zest are excited to get up in the morning, and they live life like an adventure.” While this may not come naturally to all of us, we can all work on it! Sometimes it’s about changing the way we think about things! Someone once said in addressing a group of student leaders, that when he looked in the mirror every morning, he made a conscious choice that the day was going to be a good one! It really can be about a shift in mindset and zest has a role to play here.
Interestingly, zest is directly related to our physical and mental wellbeing. There is a lot of research that shows a strong connection between overall life satisfaction and engagement (the way we buy in), and zest, and it’s accepted that zest is helpful in motivating and facilitating perseverance and grit. Both are very important to our sense of achievement.
This week at St Michael’s students and staff have had so many opportunities to engage with lots of zest! Of course, each lesson brings its opportunities, but outside of this we have revelled in different experiences from footy grand finals, to Band Competitions, a Wellbeing Walk (pictured), from a plethora of exciting learning experiences during Science week, to a range of excursions. And this is only this last week!
Year Level Directors and some senior Junior School staff also attended a professional development presentation by Michael Lincoln from the Catholic Education Office which concerned Restorative Practices. A part of the presentation remembered the words of Brené Brown whom you may have heard or read about. Brown talks about being the person in the arena, rather than just the bystander. She says “The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly.” Zest is evident here too!
In the classroom and in our community, life definitely benefits when zest is present! And that goes without saying the volumes of zest needed to enable so many enriching activities on behalf of organisers!
In the world of work, where we can spend many hours a day, studies have shown that zest is one of the most important predictors of work-related wellbeing and satisfaction. It seems that when we work through zest, we experience more gratitude, hope, and love, and this can make a difference in how we navigate stress and challenge. That sounds good to me.
Though I find it hard when I am bleary-eyed at the end of the week, I will make a commitment to look for zest when my alarm goes off at 6 am when Monday rolls around again! 😊
Have a great Week 4 and weekend ahead!
Mrs Tonia Carfora, Year 7-9 Wellbeing Initiatives Leader
Reflection Activity Day (RAD)
RAD was facilitated by an outside organisation called Life Matters and consisted of three different sessions: Consent Matters, Identity Matters, Reputation Matters. The aim was to support students as they become established in senior school and navigate relationships. Student and staff comments were very positive as students felt it was relevant to their lives.
Community Awareness Day (CAD)
CAD enabled students to raise their awareness of organisations that support the less fortunate members of our community. Through visits or talks, students learnt about the activities of various groups and shared this with other members of the year level. Sharina Rabusic (Lasallian Campus Minister) unpacked the Bible story of the Good Samaritan to find out what this tells us about service to others. Students walked to and from the central market where they were able to buy lunch. At the end of the day students lead a prayer service reflecting on their charities.
Some of their prayers of the faithful are listed below:
Thank you for the effort and contribution Foodbank makes to support South Australians by providing a range of resources to help a variety of people who are in need of food such as students, parents and people who need support. We thank all the volunteers for their efforts to make South Australia a better place.
Lord hear us.
We pray for those who are seeking refuge in this great country. Along with the people who were able to find a place to live in Australia, we pray for the people who weren’t able to be accepted into Australia. We thank the members of the Australian Refugee Association (ARA) and volunteers who dedicate their time to making refugees feel more comfortable, welcome and accepted.
Lord hear us.
We pray that the Centacare (Catholic Family Services) workers get the resources and funding to help the vulnerable, and that people who are in need of support get the help needed.
Lord hear us.
We pray that Catherine House can continue to provide services for homeless women in SA, to ensure their safety, health and wellbeing.
Lord hear us.
We pray that you watch over the Lutheran Care centre workers and volunteers. Let us pray for those who are homeless and struggle to provide for their families.
Lord hear us.
We pray for Yourtown’s services and aspirations towards helping people in need. May God look after all the workers and animals that help the people in need.
Lord hear us.
Thank you to all the families who supported their children to attend these important days in the St Michael’s College calendar.
Mr Robert Dempsey, Director of Mission