GET TO KNOW OUR COLLEGE LEADERS
YEARS 7 -12 STUDENT/PARENT/TEACHER INTERVIEWS
Thursday 19 August
10:00 am to 7:30 pm
NO CLASSES ARE HELD ON THIS DAY. DUE TO COVID RESTRICTIONS, THESE INTERVIEWS WILL NOW BE HELD ONLINE.
An email containing information regarding the process will be forwarded to Parents/Caregivers on Friday 6 August.
Summary of Dates/Times:
|Friday 6 August||Email with information forwarded to Parents/Caregivers|
|Monday 16 August 9:00 am||Program will close for generation of appointments|
|Monday 16 August 3:00 pm||Schedules emailed to Parents/Caregivers|
Appointments can be modified if required
|Wednesday 18 August||Final close of program in preparation for interviews|
|Thursday 19 August||Interviews will be conducted online|
While every attempt will be made to ensure all requests are allocated, due to high demand and constraints of the program not all requests may be met. In order to facilitate the process, please make requests wisely, identifying those teachers with whom you most need to have discussion. Please be assured that should you have any concerns during the term, you are always most welcome to contact staff via email.
To make the most of this opportunity it is important to be prepared. Before your interview, plan specific questions you wish to ask and identify factors of which teachers may need to be aware. The interview process is an opportunity for a two-way discussion where the interests of your child are important considerations for both parties. We also strongly encourage students to attend the interviews in order to enhance the conversation and to hear constructive feedback firsthand. After the interview it is important for parents to follow up on matters discussed at the meeting with their son or daughter. Acknowledge strengths, identify areas where improvements can be made and encourage your child to take responsibility for his/her own learning.
We look forward to seeing you and your child on your selected day.
Mr Gavin O’Reilly, Director of Assessment and Curriculum
YEARS 7-9 LEARNING AND WELLBEING CHARACTER STRENGTH FOCUS
Week 3: Spirituality
As a teacher and parent, when I speak about spirituality at times it’s received with an eyeroll. I’m sure you know the one I mean… the one that says, “Here we go again…Life Lesson No #!”
But I really believe this discussion is worth it. Spirituality is a complex and important strength for our wellbeing, and one we continue to develop, as all others, over a lifetime. No culture lives in isolation of spirituality; it’s an important part of our human existence and comprises “what people hold sacred, the fulfilled life, meaning and purpose, wisdom, the pursuit of moral goodness, and the enhancement of what matters most to people such as cultivating good relationships and making a positive impact on the world”. (1)
At face value we might believe spirituality and religiousness are the same things, but in fact, there are some differences between them. Spirituality and religiousness are, however, strongly correlated according to the science, though spirituality is considered more individually constructed and religiousness, more socially constructed. (2)
In recent times, we all know that our ability to support each other has been an important resource; a spiritual experience for all of our community. As a community we take pride in our connectedness and our ability to come together, particularly in moments of celebration or challenge– knowing, valuing and caring for each other. It’s when we seem to be at our best as people, and this is true in most contexts.
Together with hope, exactly this sort of spirituality has been evidenced amongst high school students as a predictor of greater life satisfaction and appears to be protective against risk taking behaviours and antisocial activities. (3) Studies have shown that the experience of sacred moments in life is results in a number of mental health benefits, including greater meaning, purpose, and life satisfaction. (4) Some studies also indicate that spirituality can be a source of optimism and stronger ability to remain positive during difficult times. (5)
Niemic et al assert that when other character strengths work in tandem with spirituality, we have greater opportunity to flourish, and we find it easier to see the sacred in things we might otherwise take for granted. Their paper cites Mindfulness scholar Kabat-Zinn (1994, p. 182):
Perhaps ultimately, spiritual simply means experiencing wholeness and interconnectedness directly, a seeing that individuality and the totality are interwoven, that nothing is separate or extraneous. If you see in this way, then everything becomes spiritual in its deepest sense. Doing science is spiritual. So is washing the dishes.
Well, that is something I will have to share with my kids! Dishwashing will never be the same again!
Humour aside, for most of us the spiritual journey is not neat and linear; rather it can be quite the rollercoaster. Over our life time, we often grapple with it, leading toward greater wholeness of our spirituality; ourselves, becoming who we are. Sometimes, when we least expect it, important and or incidental moments will lead to an ‘awakening’.
An excerpt from Niemic et al’s paper highlighted here, indicates that the engagement of character strengths can help us to explore our spirituality:
(a) perspective, judgement can help us reach deep within, listening to and connecting with our authentic self, discovering inner harmony;
(b) gratitude, hope help us to reach up and beyond deepening our connection with divine or sacred presence and seeing things more clearly through the lens of character strengths, such as kindness/compassion, wisdom, and awe or appreciation of beauty;
(c) humility, social intelligence, love support us to reach sideways and connect with others, including all living beings and to see the interconnectedness of humankind and the universe.
Curiosity can also be used in seeking, perceiving, and exploring what might be or is sacred to us. That sense of wonder.
Being open to stronger spirituality or being open to learning and exploring more about Catholic Spirituality and Christian faith may connect with us. We can also be nurtured by our community prayer in the Lasallian tradition as we say together “Let Us Remember we are in the Holy Presence of God” as well as by the practice of mindfulness.
Stopping for a moment each day to be present and observant, is a good way to start. Being present to what is around us and not taking things for granted are building blocks for spirituality and help us to know, value and care for each other and the world around us.
These days, the internet and our phones are overflowing with apps and sites that can help with this… it’s a click away.
In the end, we all seek to make sense of our world and our place in it and enjoy a sense of connectedness with others and with something larger than ourselves. This is spirituality, in a nutshell.
You may also enjoy reading this inspiring article from Let Us Remember, a Lasallian Publication. Click here to read the article.
Wishing us all a deepening awareness of spiritual experiences this week!
Mrs Tonia Carfora, Year 7-9 Learning and Wellbeing Initiatives Leader
1. Niemiec RM, Russo-Netzer P and Pargament KI (2020) The Decoding of the Human Spirit: A Synergy of Spirituality and Character Strengths Toward Wholeness. Front. Psychol. 11:2040. doi: 10.3389/fpsyg.2020.02040
2. Kor A, Pirutinsky S, Mikulincer M, Shoshani A and Miller L (2019) A Longitudinal Study of Spirituality, Character Strengths, Subjective Well-Being, and Prosociality in Middle School Adolescents. Front. Psychol. 10:377. doi: 10.3389/fpsyg.2019.00377
4. Op cit.
THE PAUSE CLUB
Pause Club is a space open to any student needing some downtime or a quiet space. In these sessions, students will learn easy breathing techniques and very simple postures to relax their mind and body.
Sessions start next week, Tuesday 10 August at lunch in the TC building.
Any questions can be directed to Ms Caputo.
Ms Dani Caputo, Dance Coordinator – Secondary