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Newsletter 8 September 2017

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This Week's Conversation

NURTURING AWE AND WONDER - MARION MACKINNON, HEADMISTRESS

A warm welcome to our Bennies Families and Staff and especially to our new boys who have joined us this term for the first time.

As the Winter breaks, we find ourselves immersed in Spring Fever noticing changes that catch our breath with a ‘Wow!’ and life feels like a miracle. These moments give us a wonderful sense of vitality, gratitude and enthusiasm. If only we could experience this feeling of awe and wonder all year round….

The good news is that Awe and Wonder is a real thing and is one of the 16 Habits of Mind that have been identified as dispositions of successful people. It’s that feeling you have when you recognise that something is amazing; and it is the desire to experience those feelings that makes us strive to achieve great things, and work towards big goals.This sense of wonder is not limited to nature but in response to a variety of stimuli such as religion, art, music and discovery.

At school this is a great motivator and means inspiring boys to discover the potential in every situation, and encouraging them to be inquisitive and ask questions. It means developing an enthusiasm to know more, think deeper,  ask philosophical questions and explain ‘ungoogleable’ questions.  Not only does this open boys’ minds to possibilities but has also been shown to promote positive emotions, love, kindness and pro-social behaviour.

As parents you too can nurture this disposition in your children by seeking opportunities that evoke awe where children can discover something fascinating in the ordinary, such as watching a spider navigate its way across a web. Try not to be too hasty to explain the answers as the awe can be quickly squashed since it thrives in an atmosphere of curiosity and questioning.

Steve Jobs summed up how the awe experience can be a powerful motivator, “When you are working on something exciting, you don’t have to be pushed, the vision pulls you.”

Wishing you and your son/s an ‘awesome’ term ahead, keeping alive that magical feeling beyond the season of Spring: STOP, THINK and MARVEL at the world around you.

Religion

REFLECTION 

Faith like a Rock

Peter is the perfect example of a man whose faith was as strong as a rock. Although he did have his challenges, and denied Jesus three times, as well as losing faith when walking to Jesus on the lake, he never gave up. He believed in Jesus, he listened to Jesus; he tried again after every failure. He still got up, still believed, still preserved. He is a great role model for us to follow, and we should teach our boys about him, and how important it is to have faith like him. 

“Faith is taking the first step even when you can’t see the whole staircase”- unknown. Faith needs to grow-not on its own but through prayer and meditation on the Word. Believe in your prayer, ask with an open heart, and your prayer shall be answered (Mark 11: 24-25). It is difficult at times to trust God completely and to put all our faith in Him. But it is important to remember that God will not let us down, He always answers us, and sometimes not in the way we want or expect. A Christian is someone who has a relationship with Jesus, and this relationship just like any other, can only be developed through having trust and faith in Him. God will never forsake us. He is love, and loves us so deeply and wants us to love Him in return: “Love is the measure of faith” Pope Francis.  Just like a parent wants the best for their children, and for their children to trust them completely, God only wants the best for us and wants us to trust Him completely, for He will provide for us.

With every class, and corner of this school filled with symbols of my faith, and having the opportunity to go and reflect in the Chapel , I feel blessed. It has been a constant reminder of God’s presence in my life. I feel very privileged that I am able to work in such an environment. In addition, I feel honoured that I get to teach and instil faith in these young men. It is an important factor of our spiritual growth to be constantly reminded of our purpose in life, who we are made in the image of, and serving our ever living God. Sometimes we need that little nudge in the right direction; we need to be reassured that all will be well, and how it should be. 
God is always there, and will always be there!

 “Now faith is being SURE of what we HOPE for and CERTAIN of what we do not SEE”- Hebrews 11:1

CONDOLENCES

Our prayers and sympathy go out to those in the St Benedict's community who have lost loved ones:
To Mrs de Wet and family on the loss of her Father.

Culture

CSO CHOIR FESTIVAL  

The Junior Prep School Choir will be participating in the CSO Choir Festival, which is being held at the Holy Rosary Hall, Shanahan Park on Wednesday 13 September. The Festival will take the form of choral workshops which will give the choristers the opportunity to interact whilst learning new music, which will be performed by the massed choirs at the end of the morning. The choir boys involved have received notification and we wish them an exciting day engaging with choirs from other schools and enriching their skills. 

EXTRA MURALS

Our extra mural programme commences on Monday 11 September for all school-based and private activities. A reminder of collection arrangements: Boys involved in Bennies Clubs and Sport are to be collected at the shade cloth after their activity. Those not collected after 10 minutes will be sent to wait at the main entrance area. Boys participating in private clubs: Karate, Confident Kids, Music and Robotics can be collected at the main entrance.

Sport

SPORTS - CHRISTA MELAIA

Our afternoon sport sessions commence from Monday 11 September. The focus of the sessions this term will be on developing the boys’ Cricket skills. Your son’s sport time slot will remain the same as it was in the second term.

General

STAFFING

We welcome back Alexis DuToit who returns after maternity leave, and once again we congratulate her and Dean on the birth of her daughter Lily.
We ask that you keep Leanne Venter in your prayers as she recovers from spinal surgery and we welcome Hayley Johnson who will be teaching Grade R4.

GRADE R TIMES

Our Grade R boys are in the final stage of preparation for Grade 1 and it is time for them to get into the new routine and an earlier start. From this term your son should get ready for school independently, carry his own case, and if he his ready, he can walk into class on his own.  We have noticed a lot of boys are already doing this, well done! Please also ensure that your son gets to school by 7:30 as that is the Grade 1 start time.  By mid October we will start locking the Grade R door at 7:30 and latecomers will need to enter through the Reception door. 

STATIONERY

As you are aware our stationery packs are pre-ordered and we are currently finalising quotes to ensure the best possible price. You will receive details by the end of September and payment will be due by the first week of November. 

BENNIES APP

Our Bennies App has enabled us to communicate promptly with parents particularly when boys are travelling and we encounter traffic delays en route. If you have not yet downloaded it onto your phone, we encourage you to do so as soon as possible, using the code StBen317

Dates to Diarise

Wednesday 6 September  Term 3 Starts 
Friday 8 September  Bennies Bash 
Wednesday  13 September  CSO Choir Festival 
Monday 25 September  Public Holiday 
Wednesday 4 October  RE Retreat 
Wed - Fri 4 - 6 October  Paulene's Bookshop Display 
Friday 6 October  1st Friday Mass 
Sunday 15 October  First Holy Communion 

Please see our Website calendar for future dates.

Congratulations

ENZO VICENTE received a medal and certificate at Dance Masters Association of South Africa for completing Hip-Hop / Funk straight D/T/Q in the beginners section.

MONITORS

3I
Tiano Azevedo-Trocado
3J Soneesh Govender
3K Ayden Harding
3L Jarred Cheketri

30 STARS

3L Tiago Di Benedetto 1C Ettore Sturin
1C Tatenda Mundangepfupfu 1C Emiliano Van Heerden
1A  Sasha Wasowicz     

PEEK OF THE WEEK

 
 Gr R: Squeezing oranges for "O" Gr 1: Breaking numbers in tens and ones. 


 Gr 2:  Making sense of cents. Gr 3: Introduction to Polly the Parrot with the author of the book.


Final word from the Head

I hope you are enjoying following our special Twitter feature capturing #30daysAtBenniesJP. It's an opportunity to experience life at the Junior Prep during the month of September, and catch a glimpse of ACTIVE learning and Bennies moments.

Twitter handle: @BenniesJP  and visit our Facebook page   

MARION MACKINNON

 

 
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