Joys of the outdoor classroom
By Carmen Blay
Year 3 Teacher
One of the many reasons I love teaching at Geraldton Christian College is the amazing Wholistic Land Management team, who pour out their heart and energy to constantly improve and increase, nurture and maintain the school gardens for teachers to integrate and present curriculum in a much more meaningful and authentic way.
Recently Year 3 students learnt about estimating, rounding in Maths, as well as the production and harvest of cotton and wool in Food and Fibre.
At Geraldton Christian College, real-life cotton and wool production is but a stroll from the classroom.
Discussing and thinking about weight, the fitness of a shearer and a growing awe of God’s creation, dominated as we harvested cotton in the gardens and observed a sheep being shorn.
Fingerprints of design
By Wendy Wright
Year 1 Teacher
As part of Biological Science, the Year 1 class has been studying and investigating the external features of living things.
They have been identifying various body coverings such as fur, scales, feathers and skin.
The opportunity to watch sheep being shorn is a wonderful experience for the children.
It allows them to see first-hand the uniqueness of a sheep and its wool, and how we, as humans, can care for and look after these wonderful animals that God has specially designed.
We are certainly blessed here at Geraldton Christian College to have such a wonderful learning environment that presents such wonderful learning experiences.
School photo days are coming!
School photo days are coming on Tuesday 22 March and Wednesday 23 March! Personalised flyers are being distributed to students to bring home from Kapture Photography, containing your child’s unique codes for ordering school photos online.
KEEP YOUR FLYER SECURE!
The unique codes contained on the flyer will be issued only once.
NOTE: If you are a split/blended family with shared care of children, please email firstname.lastname@example.org to request your child/ren’s personalised details so you can order photos online.
Order EARLY for sibling photography
Sibling photos can ONLY be ordered online. Once you receive the personalised flyers for your children, it is imperative that you order your sibling photo early to avoid missing out! There is a physical limit in the school schedule to how many sibling photos can be taken. Once the maximum capacity of sibling orders has been reached, no more sibling orders can be placed.
If maximum capacity is not reached, sibling orders close 12.00pm midday sharp, Friday 18 March.
The school or the photographers cannot accept late orders for sibling photography. Please do not ask as your request simply cannot be accommodated.
Order EARLY for discount photo day prices
Order your photos within 10 calendar days of photo day to receive discount photo day prices. Late orders are handled separately to the school delivery and incur a $30 custom service charge.
Your school will notify you in a few weeks when team and special group photos are available to view and purchase on the Kapture website. Please note: class, individual and sibling portraits are not available to view online prior to purchase.
Kapture offer a money back guarantee for any parent who is not fully satisfied with their photo package. Should you have any queries before or after photo day, please check the FAQs on the Kapture website.
All students will be photographed individually on photo day for school administration records AS WELL as included in their class group presentation available for purchase to all families. Should there be any reason why your child should NOT be included in the photo shoot – please contact the school office.
For the duration of COVID-19 in WA, please be aware that Kapture is following all recommended health guidelines and safe practices. Our photographers are acutely aware of the evolving situation surrounding COVID-19 and abide by each individual school’s COVID-19 policies. Where possible, the photographers will use verbal queues and instructions in an effort to uphold our high standard of student presentation. Students may be instructed by photographers to use single use sterile combs, wet wipes or tissues, or to fix their own collars, buttons and stray hairs.
Term 1 Week 6 update
Jumpers for Kindy & Pre-Primary
Following feedback from parents, we now have jumpers available for Kindy and Pre-Primary students ONLY (Years 1-6 should wear jackets please during the cooler months). Jumpers are $37.50 each.
Laptop cases with College logo
The Uniform Shop has a small supply of College branded laptop case/sleeves available for purchase. They are blue neoprene with the College logo printed on the front, half-zip around the exterior, zip pocket on the back and an extra sleeve inside for storing papers with the device. Laptop cases are $30 each.
Sadly, our College-branded masks have not yet arrived. According to shipping tracking, they have been delayed due to weather (flooding in the Eastern States). We will let families know as soon as they arrive! Adult and child sizes can be purchased for $10 each.
Primary skorts are in stock for any families wishing to purchase (child size 2-12) $45.00 each. Adult stock 8-16 should be here soon, $50.00 each.
Due to an increase in supplier costs, College hats have increased in price by $1.00 – to $9.00 each.
Uniform can be ordered online at any time through https://www.quickcliq.com.au/
Orders are processed within two school days, with items being delivered to students in class.
Here is an updated Price List, which has also been uploaded to the Parent section of the College website.
If you have any queries about uniform, please email email@example.com.
Free Rapid Antigen Tests
The State Government is providing five individual Rapid Antigen Tests for free to WA households.
Register online at https://www.wa.gov.au. Tests will be delivered to your home address.
If you are unable to register online, contact 13 COVID (13 26843) for assistance in placing your order.
To register, you will need to provide your name, contact number, email and home address.
Government advice is to allow for up to 15 business days for delivery from when you receive confirmation.
Veil lifted on cellular life
By Keith Roffman
Secondary Teacher Science
Year 8 Science students have been studying bacterial and fungal cells, so we decided to create some.
A beautiful array of microbial colonies were grown after swabbing surfaces around the school.
Student observations noted style and colour of the “bugs” and were instructed on pathogeny.
Previously in class, we discussed Joseph Lister (1827-1912), a scientist “who remained firm in his purpose, because he believed himself to be directed by God”.
Lister was a Christian who became one of the greats of immunology through his study into surgical infection control.
Here to love God and others
By Brenda Pattenden
Some Geraldton police officers came to visit our Pre-Primary class recently. We have been learning about our community and how different people in our community can help us.
The children wanted to thank the police for all that they are doing to keep us safe and protected. We made a big thank-you card for the police and sent them messages of encouragement and thanks.
The children and their families also blessed the police with coffee break treats. Here are some photos from the day.
Introducing our team
The College is blessed to have a Student Support team to work with students, families and staff.
Each member of the team plays a different role and brings their skills and interests to bear through their work.
The Student Support Team will contribute to the Blog on a regular basis this year, so keep an eye out for Wellbeing Corner.
We’d like to introduce you to our team, let you know when they are on site and how you can contact them.
A picture paints a thousand words. These two pictures sum up what’s most important in Louanne’s life.
In her role as School Support Counsellor (to Secondary students), Louanne’s desire is to work alongside young people in building their self-esteem and self-confidence.
Her experience as a social worker and counsellor over the years has given Louanne the opportunity to develop a toolbox of coping strategies to help support others through tough times.
She is also passionate about supporting young people to develop and maintain respectful friendships and relationships. We were not created to survive and thrive on our own!
As the saying goes: ”You are the artist of your own life. Don’t hand the paintbrush to anyone else.”
Louanne works at the College from Mondays to Thursdays.
You can contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org
Theresa is our Student Support Counsellor for primary students. She has experience as a parent, foster parent and as a Special Needs Education Assistant, which led her to complete a degree in Psychology Children and Family Services as a mature age student.
Theresa enjoys photography, camping and quad biking, and there is nothing she likes better than to be out in the bush or near the ocean. Being a keen photographer means that trips can take considerably more time. Her four children are blessed in that she has only recently discovered a love for photographing nature, so they have never had to endure a 60km trip that takes three hours!
At the forefront of Theresa’s life is her relationship with God. She loves how we are all created in God’s image (so awesome). Jesus’ life is an example of how Theresa wants to relate to the people she meets and is something she wants to model in her own life. Theresa has enjoyed meeting students and staff over the past few weeks and is looking forward to supporting students, families and staff in 2022.
Theresa works at the College on Mondays until 12pm, Wednesdays and Fridays.
You can contact her at email@example.com
Kate is the College Chaplain and has been working here since 2016 in various capacities. She also works at Juniper Hillcrest as the Pastoral Care Coordinator.
Throughout her life Kate has worked as a classroom Music Teacher, a Women’s Worker in churches, a Music Therapist in Aged Care and with children with autism, as well as in various other people-focused roles. She is currently studying counselling.
Kate lives with her husband, Josh, and their geriatric boxer dog, Abbey. She loves coffee, reading (her bookshelves are colour-coded), God, the beach and music, not necessarily in that order.
One of Kate’s bookshelves
Kate is passionate about having open, honest conversations about life’s struggles and how we can live as Christians in our broken world. She loves helping people to wrestle with their faith and ask the big questions.
Kate is excited to be working as part of this team, and would love to hear from you if you think she can be of assistance.
She works at the College on Mondays and Tuesdays.
You can contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org
Annette brings her cultural history and knowledge to the Student Support team as a Student Support Counsellor and is happy to support both students and parents as they transition into the school system.
Annette is also available for staff who would like more insight and understanding of Aboriginal people and is happy to have a yarn and assist in any way.
Annette will be working at the College on Thursdays and Fridays, commencing Term 2.
From Term 2 you can contact her at email@example.com
Alpha takes Secondary honours
By Andre Steenekamp
Director of Sport
Congratulations, Alpha House. You have taken the first honours for 2022, with victory at the Secondary Swimming Carnival.
Participation was once again the key with a total of 4226 points over Omega’s 4004 points. A brilliant effort from both houses, with a close competition that went down to the wire.
Hats off to our senior students and house captains who were sensational in every aspect on the day and who led an unusual format of competing by example. Attitudes are contagious and yours were definitely worth catching.
Congratulations to the individual champions on the day. Swimming and giving your best in every race was the key ingredients to your success.
Yr 7 Girls
Bronze medal – Taylor A
Silver medal – Sahba H
Gold medal – Emmy C
Bronze medal – Soren W
Silver medal – Dustyn H
Gold medal – Diara I
Yr 8 Girls
Bronze medal – Heidi K
Silver medal – Isabelle B
Gold medal – Delilah S
Yr 8 Boys
Bronze medal – Bjorn R
Silver medal – Lysander F
Gold medal – Reuben JW
Yr 9 Girls
Bronze medal – Nicola S
Silver medal – Izabelle W
Gold medal – Anna E
Yr 9 Boys
Bronze medal – Levi L
Silver medal – Denbi H
Gold medal – Jack C
Yr 10 Girls
Bronze medal – Micayla D
Silver medal – Nickey M
Gold medal – Jasmin P
Yr 10 Boys
Bronze medal – Ben H
Silver medal – George G
Gold medal – Max H
Bronze medal – Jana VS
Silver medal – Imogen T
Gold medal – Chanelle W
Bronze medal – Luke H
Silver medal – Kristian S
Gold medal – Lochie T
Omega claims Primary victory
By Johan Boonzaier
Head of Primary Physical Education
Well done, Omega!
Compliments to Omega, for achieving top honours in the first Primary Interhouse competition for 2022. The new faction structure added to the excitement. This was highlighted by the fact that at one stage during the carnival only three points separated the two factions.
Omega came out on top with 2907 and Alpha runners-up with a tally of 2859. The students participated with a positive spirit. Their willingness to attempt activities that some students never tried before or were not very confident in, is praiseworthy.
It was evident that the students did their best in the pool. The support from their peers and family members next to the pool was phenomenal.
A special thank you to all the staff who made the carnival run smoothly. Not neglecting the Year 10 and 12 students who supported the primary students in the pool with an attitude that was admirable.
A big congratulations to the following students for their achievements. The champions for each year group are:
Year 3 Boys and Girls
1st – Bradley dB and Abi R
2nd – Pieter L and Olivia T
3rd – Moses P and Azarya I
Year 4 Boys and Girls
1st – Oliver J and Hannah G
2nd – Boys (joint placing): Carter B & Arno M. Girls: Layla E-S
3rd – Chase O and Georgia S
Year 5 Boy and Girls
1st – Brax R and Sapherra C
2nd – David S and Addison P
3rd – Lawson H and Coco H
Year 6 Boys and Girls
1st – Jet P and Harriet J-W
2nd – Hamish E-S and Leah-May L
3rd – Connor H and Emmy A
Geraldton Christian College this year has three members of faculty or board who have completed studies at a doctoral level. They are Secondary Teacher Dr Lindsay Graieg, Deputy Principal (Teaching) Dr Gavin Marcus and Geraldton Christian Community Schools Association Board Secretary Dr Khim Harris. In this, the second of a three-part series, we profile Dr Graieg, who talks about his learning journey.
Dr Lindsay Graieg: theology transforming school practice
What is the field of expertise for your doctoral award?
The title of my thesis is, Some implications of New Creation theology for Christian school curriculum. This is a public document and can be found at https://researchrepository.murdoch.edu.au/id/eprint/27229/
The area of focus could be described as being upon curriculum theory. A conceptual analysis suggesting that curriculum acts as a shaping narrative.
The abstract for my thesis reads…
The study notes that much curriculum theory in the public domain is constrained
by a materialist understanding of the person, prompting a focus on economic
objectives and treating persons as human capital in a consumer culture. Examples
are identified in current public curriculum in Australia. It is also noted that many
purportedly Christian schools, in complying with State-prescribed minima, seem
to fall short of offering an effective counter to this reductionist perspective.
An alternative perspective is hypothesised, drawing on the New Creation
Theology exemplified by N. T. Wright, particularly in its approach to human
personhood and human destiny, as implied in the narrative of human history
moving towards the ultimate renewal of heaven and earth.
When and at what institution were you awarded your doctorate?
Awarded in 2015 through Murdoch University. Commenced in 2009 and completed part-time externally over six years. My supervisor was Professor Emeritus Brian V. Hill, founding Head of Education at Murdoch for many years. He is the author of a number of books including:
• Exploring Religion in School, OpenBook, Adelaide. 2004
• Teaching Secondary Social Studies in a Multicultural Society, Longman Cheshire 1994
• Values Education in Australian Schools, Australian Council for Educational Research 1991
• That They May Learn, Exeter: Paternoster 1990
• The Greening of Christian Education, Lancer Books, Sydney. 1985
• Education and the Endangered Individual, Teachers College Press NY 1973
One of my examiners was Professor David Smith of the Kuypers Institute. David has been involved with CEN/NICE at conferences as a keynote speaker for many years and a number of his texts are used in some of the NICE MeD units. His publications can be found at https://onchristianteaching.com/books/
You obviously recognise the benefits of ongoing education. Can you talk a bit about that, why you value it and if you would encourage others along that similar learning journey?
My introduction to Christian schooling after 18 years in the public system was an epiphany. Jo Harder (a former principal) had completed a Med in Canada and asked one of his lecturers to deliver some PL at what was then Strathalbyn Christian College. I think it was 2002 when Mike Goheen delivered a one-week intensive about worldview which, after the completion of a number of written responses, equated to a unit towards a Masters of Educational Studies through the National Institute for Christian Education (NICE). I was inspired (aka ‘blown away’) by the presentation of Biblical Theology informing the lived experience of a Biblical Worldview, through which authentic Christian school practice might be transformed. As the NICE promotional material states, I was changed.
Before graduation from the Master of Education Studies (2007) I was invited by the then Principal of the National Institute for Christian Education, Richard Edlin, to join the Institute staff as an adjunct lecturer. This work has included delivery of units studied through face-to-face presentations at conferences and intensives, support of external studies Australia-wide and the development of courses.
The ‘catch’ was to be Plus One, which meant being qualified at a degree higher than that being taught – in other words, a doctorate. From 2009-2015 I worked almost full-time and completed an EdD (Doctor of Education).
Twelve years on, I am now a senior lecturer with the Institute, working the equivalent of one day a week alongside my Geraldton Christian College teaching load. To assist in this role I have subsequently completed a Graduate Diploma in Adult Learning (2019).
Ongoing education can be valuable, although given all learning is value-laden and shapes the student, what is studied needs to be carefully chosen. The student will end up being stamped by the ideology, the underpinning narrative of any academic course. Without reservation, I advocate study with NICE as life-changing and an unrivalled course through which a Christian teacher can enhance their calling.
As a Christian, can you talk about why ongoing learning is important from your worldview?
Rust never sleeps and neither does worldview, or the stories told in contemporary culture.
An extract from an NICE unit which I have developed, Critical Evaluation of Professional Learning EDU579:
“Professional Learning, in that it looks to provide a solution to a problem, might also be considered a form of storytelling. If professional learning is the telling of stories, then what will be presented includes a picture of the world at whose foundation will be some version of the way things are. The narrative framework usually presents a solution to a problem from within a specific context about the person. It might be a particular method of instruction for primary students encountering difficulty decoding language, but it will address all the elements of context, identity, problem and solution common to all meta-narratives that feed a worldview. You may attend a day workshop on a new curriculum methodology and it too will paint a picture of the way the world is, what problem is being addressed and how such a program provided a particular solution to enhance something about the human as ‘subject’ and/or ‘object’. Most professional learning might therefore be considered to be a story reframing a picture of the world, a problem, a solution for a better or improved human. Consequently, most professional learning might be considered compact discussions, or stories, promoting a particular view of the world.
“If so, participants in professional learning may need to become as John Stott suggests, more astute ‘double listeners’ (1992). Listening to the educational stories at work in contemporary culture, attuned to the story of God’s plan and purpose through Jesus Christ to be more discerning, and by consequence, more effective educators. Therefore, professional learning needs hearing and engagement at the deeper narrative or presuppositional level to discern the worldview assumptions at work through the sessions being delivered.”
Why it is valuable in a Christian school to have staff with postgraduate credentials?
Credentials have currency in that they denote a person has undergone a degree of rigour in a particular discipline to a recognised standard. They are ‘authorised’ and may have a voice. Mind you, they can still be wrong. The value is in the degree of impact not of intelligence; perhaps evidence of resilience rather than brilliance. For my part, completing study and writing well have been a humbling challenge, which without God and support from my wife, family and colleagues would not have been possible. Being qualified in the credential sense denotes that I am a servant who officially knows (briefly) quite a bit about almost nothing. The value in study is not in the exhausting process; rather the effect and impact afterwards that might benefit others.
Jeanine Evers: Secondary Maths and Science Teacher
Where and when did you obtain your teaching qualification/s? I studied B.Ed (Further Educational Training) and majored in Maths, Physics and Chemistry. I did my studies at the University of Pretoria in South Africa.
When did you start working at Geraldton Christian College? 2022
For those who don’t know you, tell us a bit about yourself. How would you describe yourself? I am a kind soul who loves to bring joy to other people’s lives.
What is your background and what did you do before you came to Geraldton Christian College? I have been teaching for more than 16 years. I was teaching Maths at Nagle Catholic College for the past three years before I came to Geraldton Christian College.
Where were you born and where have you lived before coming to Geraldton? I was born in Brits, a relatively small town not far from Johannesburg in South Africa. I immigrated with my family about three years ago and lived in Mullewa at first before we moved to Geraldton.
In a nutshell, what has been your journey of faith? Have you always been a Christian? If not, how did this come about? I grew up in a Christian family and learned to love and serve our Lord Jesus Christ since I can remember.
What would be the key life-shaping lesson you have learned about God/Christian discipleship, etc, that you would like to impart to young people? “If I could teach students one thing, it would be …”: To learn to be kind to themselves. The Bible tells us how we should treat ourselves the way God treats us. We can give ourselves grace because God gives us grace, which is kindness and forgiveness we don’t deserve. “For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith — and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God” (Ephesians 2:8 NIV).
Greatest joy of your life? My husband, two children and my two dogs.
Toughest time of your life and how God helped you through it? It would definitely be the time when we immigrated to Australia. It was very hard for me to leave my family behind in South Africa, but through prayer and technology it became easier.
Recreation/hobbies/interests? “When I am not teaching, the things I love most to do are…” Read, play the piano and spend time with my family.
A little known thing about you? “People may be surprised to discover that I…”: Used to play drums in our church’s band.
Anything else you would like to add? I am grateful for the opportunity to teach at Geraldton Christian College. I look forward to making a difference in young lives and being a Christian role model for my students.
Scripture Union holiday camps
By Kate Gibson
Scripture Union will be running a number of camps over the autumn holidays for various school age groups, from Primary students through to Secondary.
Scripture Union camps are known not only for their diverse activities and fun adventures, but also for their solid Bible teaching and brilliant camp leaders.
If you are interested in finding out more or registering your child for a camp, please visit the Scripture Union WA website (or see brochure above).
Relief administration staff
The College is in need of staff who could work in the Front Office on a relief basis, covering Reception, Student Services and/or Uniform Shop. You will be an adaptable team player with good administrative skills, proficient in the use of MS Office packages. Experience in the use of database management systems would be advantageous (the College uses Sentral – training can be provided). We may have regular ongoing part-time work available immediately.
Applicants must have (or ability to obtain) a valid Western Australia Working With Children Check and be vaccinated for COVID-19, according to WA Government Mandatory Vaccination Directions.
The College is in need of cleaners. The hours of work will be from 3.00-6.00pm on school days. The role includes:
- Cleaning classrooms, offices, toilets, outdoor areas, staff rooms/kitchens and common areas;
- Waste management (collection and removal of rubbish);
- Stocking consumables (toilet paper, hand towels, chemicals etc);
- Working as part of a team.
The College will accept applications from Senior Students (Years 11 & 12) however, approval from a parent/guardian is required. Students must be able to comply with the below requirements.
Must have (or ability to obtain) a valid Western Australia Working With Children Check and be vaccinated for COVID-19, according to WA Government Mandatory Vaccination Directions.
08.40am – 10.27am. OLNA Reading Test
3.30pm – 5.00pm. Homework Club in College Library (in-Term and Yrs 3-12 only*)
3.00pm – 4.00pm. Maths Support in College Library (in-Term and Yrs 10 to 12 only*)
3.30pm – 5pm. Homework Club in College Library (in-Term and Yrs 3-12 only*)
Kapture School Photos
3.30pm – 5.00pm. Homework Club in College Library (in-Term and Yrs 3-12 only*)
Kapture School Photos
8.40am – 9.35am. OLNA Numeracy Test Yr 11 and Yr 12
10.47am – 11.40am. OLNA Numeracy Test Year 10
3.00pm – 4.00pm. Maths Support in College Library (in-Term and Yrs 10 to 12 only*)
3.30pm – 5.00pm. Homework Club in College Library (in-Term and Yrs 3-12 only*)
Interim Reports Published
* For students to participate, parents will need to email firstname.lastname@example.org and ask for an Operoo Home Work Club and/or Maths Support permission form.
For more information about upcoming College events, visit the College calendar.
Tell Your Story is a free, two day performing arts course for young culturally and linguistically diverse people aged 14-17 years. You will have the opportunity to participate in improvisation, acting technique and movement workshops. You will explore how to create stories for an audience and meet people from other communities who share your passion for drama and performance.
Dates: 11 and 12 April 2022
Time: 10.00am to 4.00pm
Where: Herb Graham Centre, Mirrabooka