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Newsletter 6 July 2018

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This Week's Conversation

TIPS TO MAKE YOUR CHILD INDEPENDENT - LORRAINE PEEL

Currently, as teachers, we are finding boys incapable of making confident and independent decisions. The key to raising independent children lies in striking a balance. Some parents are guiding their boys every step of the way and, by doing this, they spoil his ability to make choices. 
So how exactly can you make sure the right balance is evident when raising an independent boy? Well, here are some tips to achieve that:

CREATE ROUTINE:
Boys need a good balance between structure and freedom that together foster independence. Give him age-appropriate chores around the house to ensure that he has a sense of responsibility. 

TEACH PROBLEM-SOLVING SKILLS:
If you find your son has encountered a problem, allow him to attempt to solve it on his own. This will further develop his independence and confidence. Role-playing is one of the most effective ways to develop these skills.

FAILING IS NEVER FINAL:

Civilisation has attached a stigma to failing. There is nothing wrong with failing even though it may be difficult for you as a parent. Allow your child to make mistakes. 

LET HIM TAKE RESPONSIBILITY:
Let your son take responsibility for his own belongings, like packing his school bag the night before, cleaning up and tidying his room and making his own bed. By teaching him to do these basic tasks, you are instilling the first stages of independence.

The whole process of being independent can be slow, but it is important that you support your child in every move he makes. Offer him the tools necessary to grow up as a responsible and successful young man.

Religion

REFLECTION - DR DOEN OERSON

BLESSED ARE THOSE WHO HUNGER AND THIRST FOR RIGHTEOUSNESS

I have to remind myself that the written word in the Bible cannot be interpreted based on my own understanding as it is written in the context of the time, socio-political environment and subjective to the writer. The writers of the Gospels understood Jesus’ audience. They understood His use of language to bring His word into being. Their writing is open to a variety of interpretation; however, the biblical interpretation of the word needs to be understood as inspired by divine inspiration.  This makes the bible a human book as well as a divine book and requires that our human interpretation be guided by divine inspiration. 

We continue to focus on the beatitudes. Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness can be described as one of the most powerful messages for living righteously. Here Jesus professes that those who seek His counsel will find true happiness. Words related to righteousness are honour, incorruptibility, irreproachability and right-mindedness. These words are comparable to what Jesus set out to teach us through the beatitudes.  It is not self-righteousness but right-mindedness that is guided by the yearning to be one with God’s plan. God’s plan for our lives and seeking His will in everything we do is what gives glory to His name. This beatitude encourages us to have the right attitude when seeking the truth. Seeking to live a righteous life is a constant, the same as hunger and thirst. We should be working towards a life of grace. 

PRAYER
God, my Father, 
may I love You in all things and above all things. 
May I reach the joy which You have prepared for me in 
Heaven. 
Nothing is good that is against Your Will, 
and all that is good comes from Your Hand. 
Place in my heart a desire to please You 
and fill my mind with thoughts of Your Love, 
so that I may grow in Your Wisdom and enjoy Your Peace.
Amen

WHO TEACHES THE SOUL IF NOT GOD? - VICKI BOLTON

We are all called to be disciples for Jesus and part of this is reaching out to those around us and helping where we can.

With Mandela Day on the 18 July we have taken this opportunity to reach out to those in need.  This year we will be supporting the Joseph Gerrard Home for the Aged, Strathyre Girls Home in Kensington, Nazareth House and St Francis Children’s Home.  Each grade will be supporting an initiative and a letter will be sent with the donation requests respectively.

I would like to encourage you to include your son in the process.  Perhaps he could use some of his pocket money towards it or help out in the selection of the goods you donate.  It might be nice to have a look and see what the home does and how they help people.

“In the poor and outcast we see Christ’s face; by loving and helping the poor we love and serve Christ”  Pope Francis 

Academics -  Christa Melaia

A VALUABLE LESSON

All our Grade 1 - 3 boys are very busy preparing for our production, Pirates of the Curry Bean. You may wonder if this does not take away from some learning time. The concert affords the boys a wonderful learning experience. It is a pointless exercise if we learn without remembering. While learning the words to a song or the words in the script the boys are making a connection between the neurons in the brain. The more often we use memory the stronger these connections become. Repetition helps us remember. What better way to teach the boys this skill than by participating in the concert practices? This as well as team work and confidence building are just a few of the skills that concert time brings to the curriculum.

Culture

IT’S SHOWTIME!

There is much excitement as rehearsals are underway for our production of Pirates of the Curry Bean. Tickets will go on sale on 13 July through the digital platform on our website, watch the Bennies App for details. In order to accommodate all our families, a maximum of 7 tickets may be purchased per family and parents may only book for one performance. Should there still be tickets available by 20 July, we will once again open bookings to parents who would like additional tickets. In the interests of safety, only ticket holders will be admitted, and there will be no standing room. For performances that you are not watching, please drop off your son at the school entrance and collect him afterwards as regrettably there will no waiting facilities at the school. 

Sport

FROM THE COACHING FIELD  - WARREN WAKEFIELD

Just over two weeks ago we attended the St. Dunstan’s Soccer Festival. It was such a successful day. On behalf of the staff I would like to thank every parent who helped out with supervision of the boys as well as coaching on the day. It is encouraging to see the amount of passion for sporting development amongst the parent body, this is one of the greatest ‘ingredients’ to build healthy camaraderie and a love for sport that will see boys well into their future. 

A ‘SNAP SHOT’ OF OUR  FOCUS IN PHYSICAL EDUCATION

GRADE R - 2 
Basketball and movement skills - Current skills in focus: running, gross motor coordination, agility, speedwork, core strength, passing, bouncing and dribbling.

GRADE 3 SPORT
This Saturday the boys kick-off their soccer season with their very first match being against CBC Boksburg. The boys will be playing at Ravens Park Cricket Grounds. We wish the boys a fun-filled fixture!

SAVE THE DATE
On Saturday 21st July we will be hosting our Fun Inter-House Athletics Day. The day will commence at 8:00 and end approximately at 13:00. More details will follow.

General

WORKING TOGETHER TOWARDS BENNIES EXCELLENCE

Please note some changes in our processes with a view to provide the best value to our boys and parents. 

ADAM:

You will often hear a reference to ADAM. This is our school data platform which captures all school records such as contact details, attendance, assessments and reports. It is a transparent system where parents can also access the system and view records, it is however the parents’ responsibility to login and check that details are correct. If you are not receiving a newsletter link or reports it is possible that your details need to be updated. Mrs Haji can assist if you are unsure how to do this.

PUNCTUALITY:

Being on time is an essential life skill and speaks to our core values of respect, integrity and self-discipline. Being late is robbing other boys of their learning time as the class is disrupted while late-comers interrupt the flow while they start unpacking and try and find out what they need to be doing. Let’s bring up gentlemen who can be relied on.

As the bell rings at 7:30 the foyer door as well as the top playground door will be locked. (Grade R door will be locked at 7:45)
Late boys will need to check in at the office where they will receive a Late Card to hand to their teacher.
Lateness will be placed on record on our ADAM data system. You will receive a notification and will be able to view these records.
It is best to aim at arriving round 10 minutes before the bell rings to give boys time to settle and avoid an anxious start to the day.

ABSENCE:

When boys are unwell and not fit for school.

Please send a message directly to the class teacher (not the office) explaining your son’s absence. Our teachers are concerned when a boys is absent, so please keep the communication channels open.

Should your son be absent for 3 days or more, it is our policy, as in the workplace that a doctor’s note needs to be submitted.
Should you not provide an explanation for the absence you will receive a reminder sticker in the home work book and we request that you provide a note.
Boys are not permitted to take days off school for holidays, but if leave is requested for exceptional circumstances you are asked to discuss it with me.
Absence is recorded on ADAM and you will receive a notification.

BENNIES APP:

It is strongly recommended that both parent have this App loaded on their phone, as this is fast becoming the most efficient and instant way to communicate with our parents, particularly in cases where there are unforeseen changes in angements, or when buses are running late from fixture and outings. 

NOT RETURNING IN 2019?

In order to plan adequately for 2019, I would like to draw to your attention that should your son not be returning to St Benedict's Junior ​Preparatory​ in 2019, a term’s notice is required. This notice needs to be in writing and addressed to the​ ​Junior ​Preparatory Headmaster and emailed to the​ ​​Junior ​Preparatory Secretary,​ ​hajih@stbenedicts.co.za​ ​ Should the ​Junior ​Preparatory not receive a letter of intent before 3 August 2018, parents will be liable for a term's fees.

STAFFING

Mrs Shanleigh Pegler has been on accouchement leave following the birth of her son Owen and we look forward to welcoming her back on  19 July. We express our appreciation to Mrs Elzet Upman who joined our staff earlier this year as a locum first in the Computer Centre and then in the  Zulu Class. 

GRADE 3 FUNDRAISING

The 60th Anniversary soccer balls which were sold at our Soccer morning were a big hit. We have ordered more and these are now available from Mrs Haji at R100 a ball.

We will be launching our next fundraiser soon. The boys have created beautiful artworks, these will be used to print a personalised blank card and a 2019 calendar. The art makes a beautiful card which you can use for family and friends. There will be a letter and order form which explains the process in detail sent to you next week. Your son’s artwork will be displayed in his classroom so that you can see what his card will look like.

Thank you in advance for supporting all our initiatives. All money raised through Grade 3 fundraising is used to purchase items which will enhance the school, creating more fun experiences for our boys. 

UBUBELE

Membership for UBUBELE is still open. We are in the process of registering with the National Lotteries Board, as part of a statutory requirement. We are in the final stages of the application and will hopefully receive our accreditation in the next few weeks. 

The dates for the draws will be announced as soon as the registration is confirmed. We truly appreciate the support of our current members and would like to encourage all interested parents and families to join and show their support for our boys.

It is with thanks and appreciation to the contributions of the St Benedict’s community that we are able make a difference in the lived experience of many of our boys who are in need of assistance. 

The assistance given reaches wide and is varied. Through this crowd funding platform we are able to assist boys from the Junior Preparatory School right through to the College. Support is given in all aspects of our school life and in all areas where help is needed. 

Membership can be obtained by signing up using the following link:
https://www.stbenedicts.co.za/BelieveinBennies/Ububele/tabid/748/Default.aspx

Please feel free to contact Dr Oerson or Mrs Dubrovo for more information.

SPECIAL REQUEST - GALA DINNER

We will be hosting a Gala Dinner on 13 October to bring together both past and present parents, alumni and staff to celebrate our 60th Anniversary, this promises to be a grand occasion not to be missed. As the Junior Prep is involved in the organisation of this event we would like to invite our parents to offer sponsorship for the evening and would welcome monetary contributions or beverages such as table wines. Sponsorship and branding will be acknowledged on the table menus and we thank you for your gestures. Please contact Marion Mackinnon to discuss further.

SAVE THE DATE - ST BENEDICT'S 60TH ANNIVERSARY GALA DINNER

Dates to Diarise

 PLEASE ENSURE THAT YOU HAVE DIARISED OUR SPORTS DAY AS THIS IS ONE OF THE HIGHLIGHTS OF THE TERM AND A COMPULSORY SCHOOL DAY FOR ALL BOYS - SATURDAY 21 JULY
Mon - Thurs  9 - 12 July Gr R - 3 Confident Kids Eisteddfod
Tuesday 10 July  Book Buddies 
Wednesday 11 July Feast of St Benedict's
Saturday 14 July Pipe Band Gathering
Tuesday 17 July Book Buddies
Friday 20 July  1st Confessions 
Saturday 21 July SPORTS DAY
Tuesday 24 July Book Buddies
Friday 27 July Pirates of the Curry Bean - Matinee Show
Monday 30 July Music Concert
Tuesday 31 July Book Buddies
Tuesday 31 July Pirates of the Curry Bean Concert
Wednesday 1 Aug Pirates of the Curry Bean Concert
Thursday 2 Aug Pirates of the Curry Bean Concert
Friday 3 Aug 1st Friday Mass
Friday 3 Aug School Close at 11:45

Please see our Website calendar for future dates.

Congratulations

ZURIEL DOS SANTOS received a medal and a certificate for outstanding performance in the A+ students Soroban & Mental Arithmetic Regional Championships 2018.

STARS OF THE WEEK

1A Jason Simes Fast and accurate calculations.
  David Unigwe Completing tasks carefully and accurately.
1B  Jaydon Hobson Smart thinking in story sums.
  Logan O'Donohue Excellent effort in all activities.
1C Ryan Sander Quick and accurate maths calculations.
  Richie Johnston A conscientious approach to all his tasks.
1D Matthew Perry Diligent and hard work in class.
  Marco de Franca Trying his best in all activities.
2E Rylie Hiepner Excellent use of problem-solving strategies in maths.
  Liam Atcheson Super manners and diligent attitude.
2F  Khaya Gxoyiya Exciting and creative World Cup story.
  Nathan Grobbelaar Excellent ocean sentence construction.
2G Mario Rodrigues Creative and detailed artworks.
  Enrique De Encarnacao Rich and descriptive sentences.
2H  Daniel Hann Excellent stroy sums.
  Ryder Sullivan Excellent work with coordinates.
3I Ronan Mdakane Good effort in doubling sums.
  Kyle Strydom A pleasing improvement in his work ethic.
3J Santiago Dos Santos Enjoying and experimenting with fractions.
  Matteo Patmore Enthusiastic approach while researching South Africa.
3K Matthew Buyskes Good listening skills.
  James Wang Taking pride in the presentation of his work.
3L Kavin Kassie Quick and accurate mental maths calculations.
  Cristiano Correia Excellent attention to detail in all his work.

MONITORS

3I
Xander Singh
  Alyan Khan
3J Callum Brudvig
  Santiago Dos Santos
3K Luke Ebersey
  Kyle Sullivan
3L Krish Vaswani
  Kieron Iswarlall

30 STARS

3L Emanuele Joseph 3K Michael Van Esch
3K Ethan Jarman  2H  Henry Wang 
2H Thomas Scrooby  3I Tavongaishe Kadzomba 
3J Carter Thurlow  3I  Kyle Strydom 
1A Tiago De Quintal  1A  Giuliano De Domanicis 
1A  Michael Nell  1A  Ulemu Nkosi 
3K Cuan Naidoo  1D  Cooper Boast 
1D Joshua Rodrigues  1D  Darren Osborn 
1D Trishan Marie  3I Liam Hoffmann 
1D Troy Whelan  1B  Aaron Rohrbeck 
3L Jian Lee  2E  Logan Surtees 
2E Dino Hatzidimos  3L Aston de Agrela
1B Logan O'Donoghue  1D  James Magor 
1D Darren Osborn  1D  Miguel Regal 
1D Massimo Carrilho  1D  Daniel Callaghan 
1A  Noah Brannigan  1A  Sebastian Coumbaros 
1A Euan Ireland  1A  Saheer Padayachi 
3J Santiago Dos Santos  2F  Kyle Selawe 
2F Akani Masondo     

A PEEK INTO THE WEEK

Grade R: Our group game reserve designing project.

    Grade 1: Solving maths problems to create a puzzle.

Grade 2: Investigating and learning about all things Soccer World Cup.   Grade 3: Using technology to research our country.

Final Word from the Head

I am writing this note from Australia’s Gold Coast where I will be attending the International Boys’ School Conference; an event that champions boys’ education, dedicated to equipping boys with the tools they need to thrive in our rapidly changing world. As parents who have chosen a boys’ school, I invite you to follow me on Twitter: @BenniesJP as I will be sharing ideas from the conference theme: ‘Our Boys, Their Future, Learning to Lead.’ 

MARION MACKINNON

 
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