From the Principal

May the Month of Mary

We are now four weeks into Term 2. Our Year 12s and Year 11s are back and we are slowly seeing Years 7 - 10 return one day a week. In thinking about the boys returning, I reflected on the month in which they are returning - May.

May is Mary's month. For Marists it is a particularly important month; it is a month where we are able to focus more directly on who we are called to be and how we do what we do. Mary is not God. She is the first disciple of Jesus, thereby modelling for us how to live out the Gospel. Marists - us - our school community - take our lead from her. 

In the words of the early Marists, we think as Mary, judge as Mary, feel and act as Mary in all things. 

We should take time each day to consider how closely we are aligning ourselves with her in our ordinary lives. How would she see this world if she lived now? What would she think? How would she feel and act? We Marists are called to be no less than Mary's presence in our day.

In my last newsletter piece, I wrote about taking this time for silence and solitude, for making time to be present so we are open to the presence of God in our lives. As we move ever closer to what we consider normality, we now must seriously question what is normality and is there a new way to think about what normal is? Is there a new normal? And what does that mean for us as Marists? 

Marcellin was no stranger to the power of the Spirit. Along with his fellow Marists of the Society of Mary, he was convinced that the Spirit was inspiring them to find new ways of being present as Church in an age of religious disbelief. Today, we seek to be equally receptive and responsive to the promptings of the Spirit” and the month of May is the perfect time to do this. 

(In the Footsteps of Marcellin Champagnat) 

Marcellin remained open to what was God’s will as it unfolded in the events and circumstances of life.  His constant prayer of Psalm 127, “Unless the Lord builds the house, those who build it labour in vain ...”, bought him comfort.As we walk this month of May, we as Marists must remember that Marcellin confided his person and the success of his ministry to Mary, ‘who has done everything for us’. On a personal level, we must always be mindful of the presence of God and Mary, especially in such moments of difficulty and trial as we ponder what challenges/obstacles/opportunities we may encounter on the road to our new normal.
 

So, now is the time to think beyond what we know; to how we’ve always done things and think outside the square. Change is difficult, it’s uncomfortable but Mary did not shy away from change - she was most certainly fearful when she found herself in the presence of the angel but, we must ponder how she responded at this time. There was no disdain, no anger, she did not run and hide; she listened, she had her faith and she believed she could be part of something miraculous that would change the way people saw the world and each other. How do you respond to change? Does fear of the unknown paralyse you and prevent you from seeing opportunities?

 

Our spirituality is molded as we embrace all the experiences of our lives, not just the same old same old. All our experiences shape the way we understand and relate to ourselves, to the world, to people, and to God. 


Diverse Learning - Our Dyslexic Children Documentary Film World Premiere

We celebrated here last October for the very first time Dyslexia Awareness Month. Why? Because one in ten people have some form of dyslexia. This means that a significant number of our boys here have dyslexia. It is so important that we as a society recognise that people learn in all different ways and we must as a school advocate for all our boys and the way they learn. There’s no right way to learn, but science and the research increasingly guides us to the best ways to support and teach our boys who have dyslexia. These are some of our brightest shining stars, they just haven’t been given an opportunity in many instances to realise how to shine.

So, we here at Marist support best practice early literacy instruction in decoding words/texts and know this is vital to success in secondary school and life beyond school.  

There is a documentary due to premiere online on 21 May entitled
Our Dyslexic Children. This documentary tells the story of how a group of parents in Central Ohio took on their school district to affect change for their dyslexic children. ​They formed a ​partnership with the district and now work shoulder to shoulder to deliver the nationally recognised early literacy program they built together. This film was made to offer a roadmap for parents to advocate on behalf of all children.


If you would like more information about dyslexia, dysgraphia, or dyscalculia visit the Dyslexia Association. If you are concerned about your son’s reading or writing please speak to us.

 

 

Brigid Taylor
Acting Principal 

Happy Birthday Marcellin

From the Assistant Principal

Returning to School

Returning to school

I would like to commend our students on how well they have engaged in their classes as they have returned to Face to Face lessons. On each year group’s first day back, we have held a year group meeting with them via Zoom. In addition to welcoming them back, we have reminded the students about our processes in place to remain safe during the COVID-19 pandemic. The College Leadership Team has devised a comprehensive risk assessment document with additional control measures and mitigation strategies. Some of the many measures in place include:

  • Hand sanitisers in every classroom
  • Posters around the College reminding students about hygiene
  • Sanitising wipes in each classroom for the cleaning of surfaces
  • Bubbler functionality turned off at drinking stations with water bottle filling enabled 
  • Cleaning staff performing a twice-daily clean of the campus


From Week 6, all students will return to Face to Face lessons. Should you have any concerns about your son’s return to school due to COVID-19, I would ask that you contact your son’s House Coordinator.


As our students from Years 7-10 complete their final two weeks of Remote Learning, I would encourage the boys to access the
Mind, Body and Spirit Wellbeing Initiative.

This week the focus of the
Mind, Body & Spirit Wellbeing Initiative is Support. This, in addition to the previous focus areas of Keeping to your Routine, Keeping Healthy and Spirituality have all been designed to support your son as he works from home during this period of social distancing. We also offer you, as parents, the opportunity to engage with this material and encourage you to discuss these areas with your son. If you have any concerns about the wellbeing of your son, please do not hesitate to contact your son’s Tutor Teacher or House Coordinator.

Uniform

A reminder that the Winter Uniform is to be worn during Terms 2 and 3. This includes:

  • College long grey pants (with a belt) 
  • The College blue shirt (short or long sleeves)
  • The Junior or Senior Tie
  • College Junior or Senior Blazer (which must be worn to and from school)
  • Black leather shoes with laces (polished).
  • Black socks
  • College woollen jumper 

Please note that the sports jacket can only be worn on Thursdays. Other jumpers/hoodies cannot be worn. 

We acknowledge the shortage of stock in Junior Blazers at present.

Mary Help of Christians

Next weekend marks the Solemnity of the Patron Saint of Australia - Mary Help of Christians.  The Australian Catholic Bishops Conference has entrusted Australia to the protection of Mary Help of Christians during the COVID-19 Pandemic. I share with you below a prayer to Our Lady.

 

Mary Help of Christians - Pray for us.

Mary Our Good Mother - Pray for us.

St Marcellin Champagnat - Pray for us.

Let us always remember to pray for one another.


Anthony Munro
Acting Assistant Principal

Faith Formation

Feast of Pentecost

We are quickly approaching the Feast of Pentecost. It marks the end of the Easter Season in the Church's calendar, however, it should not mark an end to the hope we gain in Christ's Resurrection.

In the day to day errands and busyness of life, we can easily lose our sense of hope. The current Corona Virus situation makes this an even larger challenge. It is fitting then, that in May, the Church encourages us to consider Mary more actively.

She is often referred to as the first Disciple of Christ. In her example, we have a woman of tremendous charity, courage, and hope; a woman who provides a model of how to maintain hope in the face of any suffering.

Attached is the second part of the resource on Mary that Sydney Catholic Schools has created for the Month of May. The first part was included in the edition of High Notes. It's a timely tool that can support each of us in our daily lives. I hope it proves fruitful for those who take the time to engage with its devotions and reflections.

Gabriel Rulewski
Acting Religion Leader of Learning

Teaching and Learning

The ARC is OPEN

Pastoral Care and Wellbeing

The Mind, Body & Spirit Wellbeing Initiative

The fourth week of the Mind, Body & Spirit Wellbeing Initiative has a focus on SUPPORT. Our College Counsellor Ms Ben-Nissan put together some beautiful words and phrases to give the boys of our College the tools and awareness to support themselves and others.

Key terms and themes including courage, engagement, connection, presence, and positive self-talk are all explored.

Please click the links below to review information from the past three weeks of the Mind Body and Spirit Wellbeing initiative. Keep to your Routine, Keep Healthy Spirituality.

Wellbeing 

Keep to Your Routine
Keep Healthy
Spirituality
Support

Matthew Fitzgerald
Transition and Wellbeing Coordinator 

Your Wellbeing

To access any of the services listed below, please click here.

National Reconciliation Week 2020

Our theme for #NRW2020 – In this together – is now resonating in ways we could not have foreseen when we announced it last year, but it reminds us whether in a crisis or in reconciliation we are all in this together.

Reconciliation is a journey for all Australians – as individuals, families, communities, organisations, and importantly as a nation. At the heart of this journey are relationships between the broader Australian community and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.

We all have a role to play when it comes to reconciliation, and in playing our part we collectively build relationships and communities that value Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples, histories,  cultures, and futures.

National Reconciliation Week (NRW) is a time for all Australians to learn about our shared histories, cultures, and achievements, and to explore how each of us can contribute to achieving reconciliation in Australia.

The dates for NRW remain the same each year; 27 May to 3 June. These dates commemorate two significant milestones in the reconciliation journey— the successful 1967 referendum, and the High Court Mabo decision respectively.

Irit Ben-Nissan
Counsellor

English

Competition

English Year 11

Year 11 English Studies are spending term two exploring what it means to be Australian. Here’s our thoughts on Australia and Coronavirus. 

 

Tiger King, Takeaways and Shattered Traditions

 

My fellow homeschooling, ‘Tiger King’ binge-watching Aussies; In our time in quarantine, we have discovered many things about ourselves. We’ve watched all the home workout videos from all those Instagram “personal trainers” on our quest to stay fighting fit. We have honoured, in a way unlike no other time, the brave men and women who served our great nation: Apart but not Alone.

 

The last eight weeks have certainly left an impression on everyone and won't be easily forgotten. We have seen what our fellow Australians do during a crisis, but is it all positive or do we have much to improve on?

What has Coronavirus revealed about us? Let's start with the not so good things we learned about ourselves:

  • Australians will go crazy over toilet paper! One person bought an 18 years supply!  This was NOT our best moment!
  • Some Aussies are really selfish and don’t care about the golden rule: we are looking at you, people hanging out at Bondi Beach on March the 20th: you ruined it for everyone!

. . . and now for the positives:


We have realised how much we need social interaction and that our friends are really important to us - and our grandparents are even more important. 

  • ANZAC Day traditions are a huge part of Australian culture and we treasure this day. Even in a time of coronavirus, we will find a way to continue our traditions. 
  • We are willing to follow rules if it's for a good reason that is explained to us. Thank you, Dr Norman Swan!
  • Doctors and nurses are getting the recognition they deserve for helping people: their selflessness has brought hope and pride to all of us.

When all of this is over, what will it be that we remember? Will it be the selfishness of panic-buying lunatics, or will it be the gratitude we feel when reunited with the people we love? Let’s hope we end up better Australians than what we were before.

Brad Haines, Josh Snowdon, Harry Sole
Year 11 English

 

Emotion Poems Year 7

The poems below were written by Year 7 students during Online Remote Learning.

 

Shyness

 

Shyness is an almost invisible light blue

It sounds like the voices of other people in conversation

It tastes like water left in my drink bottle for too long

It smells like someone else’s house

Shyness makes me feel distant and alone.

Findlay Rimmer

 


Surprise

Surprise is light pink

It sounds like a roaring crowd

It tastes like fairy floss

It smells like a sweet nectar

Surprise makes me feel like a helium balloon. 

Karsten Muller

 


Adrenalin

Adrenalin is viper red

It sounds like a car engine roaring

It tastes like raw beef

It smells like rust from a junkyard

Adrenalin makes you feel intensely uncomfortable in a good way.

Riley Vercoe

 


Happiness

Happiness is like a bright blue sky

It sounds like birds chirping in a tree

It tastes like a hot Hawaiin pizza

It smells like a campfire on the farm

Happiness makes me feel like I am free.

Kyden Van Der Walt

 


Sonder*

Sonder is a deep dark purple

It sounds like an uplifting song made by yourself

It tastes like a warm October with optimism in the air

It smells like the new car smell that you love

Sonder makes you feel finally one with humanity.

*Sonder is that feeling when you realize that everyone you see, everyone who passes you by has their own complex life. 

Austin Hatton

 

Linda Hutchinson
English Teacher

My Life In Lockdown

English Poetry: My Life in Lockdown

My Year 7 class were asked to write a poem describing their lives in quarantine. We read some examples of poetry written during other periods of crisis like the Spanish Flu and they drew upon both their personal experiences and what we observed worldwide. They created some beautiful and thoughtful poetry which captures the peculiar experiences and thoughts which we are all sharing. 

Ms Amanda Lee
Assistant English Leader of Learning

 


 

Pablo Urizar

Days go by as quick as a slug, dullness hangs everywhere.

Boredom is an invisible barrier that halts me from entertainment.

Everything is as gray as a storm cloud.

The only way to communicate with my friends is through the internet, a simple basketball

Game becomes an impossible quest.

Games take up much of my time, but they soon become a wrinkled man in his 90’s, old.

I have taken up cooking although my newfound impatience and testy nerves are as quick to

Flare up as the head of a cobra.

I long to shop for shoes and electronica but my parents become twin mountains of ‘No’ when

I ask.

I yearn to catch the bus, go to Chatswood,

Travel,

Go to the movies but I have come to know the answer,

It is as stock standard as a tissue.

I have become a thief,

Hiding my true emotions away and replacing them with a blissful look.

Despite my feelings, lockdown is still just a minor annoyance,

A Lego underfoot,

An uncharged phone,

A cold meal,

An unbeatable boss

Or a poor movie plot.

I no longer hear the VROOM of cars,

No longer smell a street barbeque,

No longer play tennis or swim with my friends.

Instead there is silence. Then the boredom sets in and the cycle repeats.

 


 

Oliver Djani 

Caged up like a lion in a zoo

No one to play with, or talk to

Going stir crazy stuck in one place

Needing a second to clear my headspace

Sitting here is like watching paint dry

 

I am a mere fly, under the governments command

But there are always those, who don't understand

Stretching the rules, like a thin rubber band

But not everything is bad

Other times were much more sad

 

Born in the dark days 

Start of the 19th century

By 60 you've endured hit after hit after hit 

Red dirt covered the lands 

Flowers blooming in the remains of the fallen soldiers

Right after the relentless battles, a flu covers the earth

Your friends drop like flies  

It couldn't get worse, yet today we sit and complain about lack of toilet paper.

 

With patience low, and contact lower

It doesn't take much to turn a person into a raging beast

People are wearing blindfolds to the truth 

Isolation is necessary to keep cases from flying through the roof

 

So much to learn, and take away

Things could change after these tough days

Daddy might stay at home instead of flying to Rome

This pandemic is a wake up call

And I sure do hope, it wakes up all

 

It's hard, it's tough, it's a struggle they say

But with my family

I wouldn't want it any other way

 


 

William Doumit

I am seeing all these ads

On the television

That say we can get through this pandemic

That Australia can get through this.

But then I see those same Australian people,

Stealing toilet paper

Out of a blind lady’s shopping trolley.

And punch-ups in the supermarkets

Over a can of baked beans.

Sitting in front of a laptop

Doing all my work

Thinking about how boring it is

To be stuck at home

And not allowed out.

I think of all my friends

Stuck in the same position as I,

And of all the fun times

We had together

Before this boring time

I think I have got the lockdown blues

All I want to do is go out

And hang out with my friends

And see the family.

I miss all the big breakfasts

At my grandparents’ house

Eggs, bacon, sausages

Spaghetti, beans and toast.

And when we do get through this

We may even miss these times.

We may miss the kindness of people

And we may miss family time,

Small gifts left on our doorsteps

Containing nice surprises,

The cooperation of businesses,

The free coffees for health workers.

But we sure won’t miss the hiss of ventilators

The fear when someone coughs.

The quarrels in the supermarket,

The toilet paper fuss.

We will remember those who have been taken

By its frightening hand

Into a deep, dark hole,

Never to be seen again

 


 

Antony Papallo

I look out the street and see the empty shops sleeping,

Scarcely do I see,

Somebody peeping.

I look at the playground and see the swings sitting empty,

Before the pandemic,

The children they had were plenty.
The place was alive,

As much as a chair.

With the people still hiding,

Away, in their family’s care.

The trees still rustle,

The leaves still fly

And the waves still crash,

Except no one is seen,

Unless they’re on a dash.

I feel the wind,

The only friend I’m allowed to meet,

As I step outside,

Into the lonely street’s heat.

The concrete pavement remains unused,

Longing for an occupant, 

To walk over its grooves.

I walk down to the beach,

To catch a wave.

But nobody is seen,

Except for those who misbehave.

I jump on my board and paddle out,

My arms turning sore.

I turn back, to the usually crowded shore,

Instead I see an unused floor.

The wave I catch is hollow at its core.

I didn’t see it coming,

But I somehow knew,

The the wave would envelop me,

Just as the virus had too.

I swirl uncontrollably underwater,

Struggling for a breath,

But I knew the water would rest,

And I could regain control,

I just have to wait for the right moment,

To burst through the surface,

And witness the end of this,

Tragic and vicious, Test of trust, hope... and life.

 


 

Tomas Smith

The world stops as if time froze.

Everyone stays inside like bears during winter.

The virus is small and hurts like a splinter.

But that's just how it goes.

And here I am in my room.

Missing school and my friends.

Our hands are important to cleanse.

Else we meet our doom.

I haven't done much besides sleeping in.

Occasionally I go outside and risk it all.

Just so that my sanity doesn’t fall.

Some tourists are trapped at an inn.

I’ve been trapped inside for months.

Doing the same each day.

It's been hard to stay away.

Some companies have been making a bunce.

In constant fear.

Continuously staying alert.

It could be on your shirt.

One of us may have it here.

Haven't been encouraged to do anything.

What’s the point if we don’t have to.

The situation has been very blue.

Staying inside with nothing to do.

What can I do?

Read a book.

Maybe cook.

Maybe watch the news

Maybe it isn’t so bad after all.

Yeah we may be trapped indoors.

But think, we could help with chores.

We could count our fours.

We could learn about our wars.

We could go make smores.

We could go to the stores.

Just think.

 


 

Owen Chan

Lockdown is a criminal

Robbing us of all our fun

I always sit and wonder

Will this pandemic be done?

Everyday I sit for five hours

To do my online school

I splash and kick, while on my bed

Because I miss the swimming pool

I think of all the activities

That I could be doing

But instead I’m locked up like a prisoner

So there’s nothing I’m pursuing

Toilet paper is like food

Hand sanitiser is like water

Taking someone’s precious gifts

Is like committing manslaughter

Who knows when this pandemic will end

Not my neighbour, nor me, nor you

However, not all is calamity

Good has shown itself too

I like to be in the kitchen

Cooking and eating food

I think I’m nearly as good as Ramsay

Just in a happy mood

I’m slowly adapting to this life

Like a penguin living in summer

I’m desperately trying to be happy

But it’s still a massive bummer

My internet is a turtle

Gradually driving me insane

So I’m forced, by this heartbreaking tragedy

To play an old board game

Everybody has lost their minds

We’re all stuck under a roof

My family is especially like this

And I will happily give you proof

Restrictions are gradually coming down

Freeing us like birds in a cage

If we were held in any longer

I probably would have raged

Scientists are working their butts off

Like chefs at a buffet

I can’t do much, I’m just a kid

So I like to sit and pray

My friends are coming back to stores

I can now see toilet tissue

Hand sanitiser is also returning

So now there’s less of an issue

I know this will all end soon

We just have to wait

I guess I will have a lot of spare time

To bake myself a cake

 

Languages

Unleashing Students' confidence in Learning Languages

Marist College North Shore students have accepted the challenges of learning le français online. We have been using CANVAS as well as The Language Gym and Education Perfect to engage and challenge students.

Here are some of the creative results of those students who have finished both Units on Les Sports and Leisure Activities: Joseph Sargent and Harry Pasalidis.

The task was: Invent a superhero or write about one that you know about. Write a paragraph in French about what they enjoy doing in their spare time. Make a presentation that includes a picture of the superhero and their description. You could present this as a poster or a video.

It just shows that having a go combined with détermination and courage can go a long way. Bonne continuation les garçons (= keep up the good work boys)!

Galiane Marterer
French Teacher

Learning Support

New MCNS Learning Support Website

 

Solidarity

Solidarity Initiative

Charity, at its core, is the action of giving from our hearts. Whether it's a gift of our money, our resources, or our kind words; the love with which we imbue our actions is what makes them charitable.

In our current climate, it has become harder to engage in charitable initiatives. This, however, doesn't mean we should forget about the importance of Charity. 

The College is continuing to do what it can to support those who are experiencing disadvantage in our wider society, especially at this time, through a food drive for Jesuit Mission.

If you are able, and would like to support this initiative please see the image below with the list of items that are needed. Any donation is welcome and can be dropped off at student reception.

 

Gabriel Rulewski
Solidarity Coordinator

 

Careers

Career Opportunities

 

Careers@ MCNS on Canvas

Students and Parents are able to access an extensive source of information pertaining to Careers on Canvas.  Students and parents will need to accept the course invitation to facilitate this.  Communication to students regarding Careers and transition will be posted on Canvas rather than email or the daily notices.

 

UAC news  date changes 

 

Following NESA’s decision to delay the HSC examinations, UAC have made some adjustments to their calendar for the 2021 entry cycle.   Please see the notice below.

 

Click here for all Career Opportunities

Nicola Brown
Careers Advisor

School Notices

Living Rooms Got Talent

 

As you are all aware, the time that we have been spending at home means our school community has spent less time together. In an attempt to promote school spirit and to build a sense of community, our leadership team is launching a new contest - Living Room’s Got Talent!

 

We are hoping this will be an opportunity to showcase our talents and individuality. While in isolation, many of us may have worked on a new talent or perhaps rekindled an old interest - we’d love for you to share it with our community. 

 

While this is a competition with house points and exciting prizes up for grabs, the ultimate aim is for the celebration of our abilities which we wouldn’t see in a school environment. 

 

So, please submit a video of you performing your chosen talent. Examples could include a magic trick, signing a song, playing an instrument, a sporting talent or even a gymnastics/yoga routine. Also, feel free to involve any family member or friend in the challenge (as long as all social distancing restrictions are followed) as we hope this is a community initiative. 

 

The nature of this initiative will be challenging for many of us. To have the courage to practice and showcase a skill for others to see will be outside many students comfort zones - That’s OK! Courage is in both our theme and our motto - to win and improve, as people, we need courage;  this is a great opportunity for us to show that courage! Recognising this, we are also awarding house points for ALL serious entries. 

 

Please ensure your video: 

  • Showcases your talent in under 5 minutes 
  • Obeys all social distancing guidelines
  • Is school appropriate
  • Video file is titled with full name, tutor group, year group and your talent (eg. John Smith, Kelly 4, Year 12, singing)
  • Uploaded to Google Drive with sharing setting “accessible to anyone”

Videos are to be submitted by a Google Drive link on google form by June 12, Form in emails. We will then judge over week 8/9 and have winners by the end of the term. 

 

Aiden Brennan
College Captain

Embrace Your Space

To promote a positive learning experience we are asking the students to embrace their learning space at home and be inspired to learn.  Take a pic and send it to Mrs Pacifique at julie.pacifique@syd.catholic.edu.au, each submission will receive a house point.  I look forward to seeing some creativity!!  Click here to see students in their learning space.

 

Philosophy Club

 

Ms Dunne's Zoom Meeting

Email Ms Dunne if you are interested in attending: tracey.dunne@syd.catholic.edu.au

Community Notices

Uniform Shop

The Uniform shop will be open on Friday 22 May, Monday 25 May, Tuesday 26 May and Wednesday 26 May 2020 from 10am - 2pm.
An Appointment is required for new uniform fittings only. Appointments are not required for all other purchases. An appointment can be made by emailing June.mitchell@syd.catholic.edu.au
 
Blue Sport shorts are now available with the exception of size 77cm.  Grey trousers and long sleeve shirts should be available from Week 5 and white sport polos should be in stock in approximately Week 6 or 7 (this could change and we will keep you updated).    
 
Unfortunately, Blazers have been held up in Indonesia and will not be available until early July, we apologise for any inconvenience and will update the community if this situation changes. 
 
Thank you for your patience.

June Mitchell
Uniform Shop

 

Do Your Bit