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Newsletter 21 July 2017

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This Week's Conversation


This week each Grade took part in a charity drive to help those in need as part of our 67 minutes for Mandela Day. You only have to Google lessons from Mandela and numerous websites with his words of wisdom will appear. Mandela was a great example of someone who valued kindness and compassion towards others. We know that in his lifetime he often took the time to learn about each person's life story and how they came to the current point in their lives.

A good head and a good heart are always a formidable combination. Nelson Mandela.

Children are never too young to help others. All our boys got involved in this charity drive by creating food or toiletry packs, learning about where the items were going and even writing a note to the recipient.

We all want to raise children who are accepting and tolerant of others. A large part of our recipe for success is developing our emotional intelligence. Children who are able to display empathy and compassion are more likely to develop healthy and productive personal and work relationships. All children have the natural capacity for empathy but this can be nurtured by taking a little time each day to consciously develop this trait.  Charity does not always need to involve money. Model a generous spirit. Clean out cupboards together with your son and take him along to deliver items to a worthy organisation. Teach your child to help others. Be a big hearted family who supports others and talk to your son about how it makes us feel good knowing that we have helped someone else. I am sure that you can think of many ways to set an example and involve your son in charitable works. Always involve him and remember children are never too young to do so.

If you want happiness four an hour, take a nap. If you want happiness for a day, go fishing. If you want happiness for a year, inherit a fortune. If you want happiness for a lifetime, help somebody. -Chinese Proverb.




Sunday’s Gospel is taken from Matthew 13.The parables used by Jesus in these scripture readings are simple lessons with significant meaning. The sower whose seed was contaminated by an enemy, the mustard seed that has the huge potential to grow into a tree and the yeast that leavens the dough, focus on the potential for good to prevail over evil. Goodness grows when encouraged and motivated by the right reasons. This week we experienced beautiful examples of how good deeds can enrich the life of the giver and the receiver in the outreach programme for Mandela Day. Matthew 13:32 describes the mustard seed as “the smallest of all the seeds, but when it has grown it is the biggest of shrubs and becomes a tree, so that the birds of the air can come and shelter in its branches.” Good deeds have the potential to reach far and wide and positively impact many lives directly and indirectly. 
Our influence on the world is like the yeast that leavens the dough. Common baker’s yeast is used to leaven bread, causing it to thaw and double in size. It energises and creates movement. So too are we called to energize and create movement in and around our own families and communities. Shaking up and influencing the world around us gives us purpose and identity. It drives us to knowing and understanding the love of God for us and His promise for our salvation. Matthew 13: 43 is a reminder that “…the upright will shine like the sun in the kingdom of their Father. Anyone who has ears should listen!”. We are known for our influence on the people around us, our families, community and country. The question we have to ask ourselves then is “What would I like to be known for?” As a school we encourage the boys to let their light shine before others, so that they may see their good works and give glory to your Father (Matthew 5:16). In the same way we encourage them to grow like the mustard seed and bear fruits of courage, hope, transcendence, joy and commitment. Values that
are needed to influence the world for the better. Let us go out in the world and live the parables of the mustard seed, the sower and the yeast. Dr Oerson


The Sacrament of Reconciliation and Penance or commonly referred to as Confession is one of the most unique and beautiful aspects of Catholicism. Jesus Christ, in His abundant love and mercy, established the Sacrament of Confession, so that we as sinners can obtain forgiveness for our sins and reconcile with God and the Church. This Sacrament “washes us clean,” and renews us in Christ.

Last Friday the 14 July our First Holy Communion boys celebrated this Sacrament for the first time. We congratulate them and hope that they may discover the joy of God’s unconditional love and forgiveness.


Our prayers and sympathy go out to those in the St Benedict's community who have lost loved ones:
To Callum Hertenberger and family on the loss of his Great Granny.


MADD week

MADD week is back after its successful launch last year. During the last week of this term, your son will have the opportunity to explore all things MADD. (Music, Art, Drama and Dance) The teachers have exciting activities planned and the boys will have the opportunity to get creative for the week. We are collecting some items to assist us with our activities. If you have any old wax crayons,  empty toilet rolls and food tins, and broken/old CDs at home, could you please send them to school.


On Thursday 20th July, the Grade 3 boys participated in an exciting event called The Amazing Reading Race. The boys had to complete different reading, problem-solving and physical challenges as a team. Lots of fun and excitement was had by all and Mrs Peel would like to thank everyone who helped to make the day so successful!





This term’s Junior Prep Informal Music concert will be held in the Junior Prep Hall, on Wednesday 26 July at 17:30.  Any boy who is taking instrumental lessons, either at St Benedict’s or with another teacher, is welcome to participate in the concert.  Boys who wish to participate in the concert should write their name on the sign-up list which is on the notice-board outside Mrs De Sousa’s classroom.
We invite everyone who is interested in hearing the wonderful musical talent in the school to come along to the concert.  This also serves as a reminder to all boys, who are learning a musical instrument at St Benedict’s, that they are required to attend the concert.  This information was also sent out in an email to all parents. Should you have any queries, please contact me on chalmersj@stbenedicts.co.za



Our annual Sports Day takes place on Saturday 29 July on the main rugby field at the College. Please enter through Harcus Road. The Kings road gate will be open after the event to ease the traffic flow out of the school. All boys from Grade R to 3 have been practicing their athletic skills and are expected to attend. We ask that your son meets at his House banner on the field by 7:30. Boys are to wear their sport kit; blue shorts, tracksuit top and bottom and their House coloured T-shirt which they will receive during the course of the week. It is essential that boys wear the school cap, and use sun cream. White trainers and short white socks to be worn. As the day warms up boys may remove their tracksuits.


The day starts promptly at 8:00 with a march past. We encourage Parents to come along and support the boys, and family members are most welcome to attend. There will be refreshments on sale. The boys have received slips to pre-order their food. Please ensure that you have sent in your order form and money to your son’s class teacher by Tuesday 25 July. The event is expected to end at approximately 11:30. 


With Sports day coming up soon we are building House spirit amongst the boys. On Friday 27 July all boys Grade R - 3 are to wear an accessory with their school uniform. This accessory must be in their House colour, e.g.a blue hat for Mazenod, dad’s red tie for Allard, a yellow scarf for Erasme or a green pair of glasses for O’Leary. Have fun!! May the best House win.


As part of our initiative to prepare the Grade 2’s to transition from mini-cricket to hard ball cricket which is played in Grade 3, they will have an option to attend cricket coaching at the College fields and indoor nets on Friday afternoons. Boys will be collected from the JP foyer at 13:15 by the Prep School coaches and accompanied across the road. It is not necessary to have cricket kit, but if boys have their own bats they are encouraged to bring them. Please note that boys will not return to the JP and must be collected at 14:30 at the Prep School Field at the top of the ramp leading off the gym parking. The first session will be on 28 July. 

Boys have received a reply slip and these must be handed in by Friday. Boys will only be permitted to attend if a reply slip has been received.



Thank you for the positive feedback received after our Parents Talk on Tuesday evening. As Teachers and Parents, we are so aware of the importance of being well-informed on how best to prepare our boys to be responsible digital citizens. A key message from the talk is the importance of listening and talking with your children to maintain open communication and close, trusting relationships from an early age.  This needs to be well-established as they enter the teenage years. Being aware of the risks and setting strict age appropriate rules are also crucial factors. It’s also our responsibility to model appropriate online behaviour. Several parents have requested that we share the presentation and this can be accessed at the link below. 

Social Media Presentation


In order to plan adequately for 2018, I would like to draw to your attention that should your son not be returning to St Benedict's in 2018, a term’s notice is required. This notice needs to be in writing and addressed to the Headmistress and emailed to  juniorprep@stbenedicts.co.za

Should the School not receive a letter of intent before 4 August 2017, parents will be liable for a term’s fees.


Our Bennies App has enabled us to communicate promptly with parents particularly when boys are traveling 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


All orders for Winter sport photos need to be in by Friday 28 July. They are on display at reception and cost R30. Please place your order with Mrs Haji.

Dates to Diarise


All extra mural activities end on 28 July and there will be no afternoon Sport, Culture, Clubs Robotics, Karate, Confident Kids, Cubs or Academic Support during the last week.

Saturday 22 July  Gr 2 Soccer at St Stithians 
Wednesday 26 July  Junior Prep Informal Music Evening
Saturday 29 July  Junior Prep SPORTS DAY 
Monday - Friday  31 Jul - 4 Aug  MADD Week 
  31 Jul - 4 Aug No Extra Murals
Friday 4 August  1st Friday Mass 

4 August  School close at 11:45 
Wednesday 6 September  Term 3 Starts 

Please see our Website calendar for future dates.



To all the boys who participated in the Confident Kids Eisteddfod.
LUKE CORBETT received a certificate for successfully demonstrating the necessary technique to correctly execute the foundation skills of artistic gymnastics.


1A  Declan Reynolds Taking pride in his work.
  Leandro Correia Excellent detective sums.
1B  Ethan Ford Smart thinking in story sums.
  Mark Zeng Excellent effort in learning his reading words.
1C Emiliano van Heerden Consistent perseverance and effort in his tasks.
  Brendan Erasmus Grasping detective sums effectively.
1D Morgan Mare Consistent good effort with his work.
  Lucca Angelucci Good sentence writing.
2E James Wang Good application of punctuation in written tasks.
  Liam Geraghty Pleasing results in calendar work.
2F  Santiago Dos Santos Persevering and mastering spray sums.
  Alyan Khan Excellent fraction work.
2G Davide Patrizi Kind and caring nature, as he willingly helps and supports his friends.
  Liam Hoffmann Excellent expression while reading.
2H  Matthew Buyskes Accurate and speedy number bonds.
  Kai Whelan Excellent improvement in his punctuation skills.
3I Steven Mendes Outstanding comprehension work.
  Owen Davies A continued good effort in all his work.
3J Tristan Velosa Working so diligently and carefully in all tasks.
  Luca Mindszenty Being such a team player in the Amazing Reading Race.
3K Valentino de Vita Good doubling in Maths.
  Tristan Ferreira Excellent Phonic work.
3L Jayden Sham Trying to work independently.
  Jayden Mulena Excellent presentation of work.


Vusi Dhlamini
  Dante Volo
3J Enzo Vicente
  Connor Dewart
3K Tiago Bartolo
  Aleksej Anzalone
3L Filippo Cinti
  Liam Hoy


3I Troy Corbett 3I Mbilo Dumiso
2E Luke Ebersey 2E Rafael Dos Santos
2E Jesse Du Plessis 2E Ethan Jarman
3L Gianluca Ferretti 3I Matthew Mann
3I James MacDonald 3L Lesego Mbileni 
3L Dylan Wiggill  3I  Steven Mendes 
3I  Marcio Alves Nunes  1D  Nathan Grobbelaar 
1D  Tyler Maroun 1D Rylee Hiepner 
1A  Slade van Wyngaart  1A Aaron Magua 
1A  Declan Smith  1A  Clayton Shone 
1A Colby Lundberg  1A  Ryder Sullivan 
2F  Hubert Plettenbacher  2F  Kavin Kassie 
2E  Vaugh Swanepoel  2E  Jasper Pang 
2H  Carter Thurlow  2H  Aston de Agrela 
1B  Timothy Barbeau  3L  Gianluca Ferretti 
1A Bjon Gouws  1A  Matthew Stanier 
1A  Xavi Ribeiro  1D  Cole McNeilage 
1D Letlotlo Menu  1D  Cameron Chapman 
2G Massimo Vuirli  2G  Bradley Anderson 
2G  Liam Hoffmann  2G  Jarred Wood 
2G  Devon Liebenberg  2G  Ethan Garcia 
2G  Asad Martinus  1D Ben Deftereos 
2H Diego Mendonca  2H  Santiago Hill 
1C  Brandon Findlay  1C  Aidan Carter 
1C Giancarlo Raccenello 1B Thando Mchunu 
1B Jason Hove  1B  Ye Li


Grade R: We supported Bedfordview Methodist Church
Preschool by making sandwiches and packing lunches
for them.

    Grade 1: Goodie bags for the girls at Strathire
Girls Home.

Grade 2: We collected 234 boxes of soup for the Project  Brave Foundation.
 Grade 3: We are very proud of our collection of baby supplies for the St Francis Children's Home.

Final Word from the Head

Mandela Day was marked across all three sections of St Benedict's in unique and special ways and by all accounts, we certainly lived up to our core value of "Personal & Social Influence". Efforts like this do not happen by themselves and we sincerely thank our staff for driving the various projects and the generous contributions from our Bennies families. The boys have gained a deeper understanding of our values and what it means to be “compassionate and caring and focused on improving our world and empowering the communities of today and tomorrow". Our Peek into the Week section highlights the boys’ hands-on involvement in the various Mandela Day initiatives. Wishing you a week ahead of #GrowingKindness

Twitter handle: @BenniesJP  and visit our Facebook page   



Dante Volo

Dante Volo

Dates to Diarise

Wednesday 3 May Term 2 Commences
Friday 5 May  1st Friday Mass 

5 May  Reach For A Dream Speaker at assembly
Sunday 7 May Alumni Homecoming Mass 08:30 College Chapel (See details on event poster)
Monday 8 May  Extra Murals Start
Tuesday 9 May  Parent Wellness Evening - Bullying Talk (See details on event poster)
Thursday 11 May Mothers' Day Mass (See details on event poster)
Friday  12 May  Slippers Day - remember to purchase your wrist band
Tuesday 16 May  'Let The Children Sing' Choir Festival
Friday 19 May  Founders Day Mass 
  19 May  School close at 12:00 - No Supervision due to staff function
Friday  19 - 27 May Catholic Schools Week
Sunday  21 May  Catholic Schools Sunday 
Wednesday 24 May Teacher Appreciation Day
Thursday  25 May  Ascension Thursday Mass 
Tuesday  30 May  Grade R visit to HRS 

Please see our Website calendar for future dates.

Dates to Diarise

Wednesday 3 May Term 2 Commences
Friday 5 May  1st Friday Mass 

5 May  Reach For A Dream Speaker at assembly
Sunday 7 May Alumni Homecoming Mass 08:30 College Chapel (See details on event poster)
Monday 8 May  Extra Murals Start
Tuesday 9 May  Parent Wellness Evening - Bullying Talk (See details on event poster)
Thursday 11 May Mothers' Day Mass (See details on event poster)
Friday  12 May  Slippers Day - remember to purchase your wrist band
Tuesday 16 May  'Let The Children Sing' Choir Festival
Friday 19 May  Founders Day Mass 
  19 May  School close at 12:00 - No Supervision due to staff function
Friday  19 - 27 May Catholic Schools Week
Sunday  21 May  Catholic Schools Sunday 
Wednesday 24 May Teacher Appreciation Day
Thursday  25 May  Ascension Thursday Mass 
Tuesday  30 May  Grade R visit to HRS 

Please see our Website calendar for future dates.




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