The End of the Year
I just want to start by thanking the Prince of Peace community for making 2018 another successful year at the College.
It has been pleasing to see the amount of students at the College that have been recognised for their academic achievements over the past few weeks. A special mention must go to Ammon Beard who was College Dux for 2018, with an achievement of VHA in all of his subjects studied in Year 12.
We have continued to grow as a community and have now recorded four years of sustained growth as a College and this summer we are heavily investing back into the College. Over the holidays, we will complete the following Capital projects in line with the College’s strategic plan:
- An undercover sports area on the oval of the Junior Campus
- Placing a cover over the top of the ‘Kiss and Drop Zone’ at the Junior Campus to provide shelter for the students
- We are starting to rejuvenate the Undercroft area of Junior Campus for the Junior Primary students
- Senior Campus ground-floor classrooms will have bi-fold windows installed to provide break-out space for the students in class time
- A full air-conditioning system will be installed into the Senior Campus Technology building
- Senior Campus Library will start a rejuvenation to provide a more contemporary space for students
On top of this, significant investment will be made in teaching and learning resources for students with a strong emphasis being placed upon STEM resourcing.
As we complete the school year, I would like to acknowledge the staff that are leaving our community and take this opportunity to thank them for all that they have done in service to the students of the College:
- Taylor Davis completes her contract as a Junior Campus teacher
- Anja Pingel completes her contract as a Junior Campus teacher
- Cathy Walsh leaves us for a new challenge after 10 years’ service to the College
- Melissa Forbes concludes her contract as a Teacher Aide on the Junior Campus
- Isabel McCall and Jarrod Freeman conclude short-term contracts on the Senior Campus
- Lis Pyott will retire at the end of the year after many years of dedicated service to the Prep team on Junior Campus. We wish Lis a special farewell as she starts the next chapter with her family
- Sarah Dixon will conclude her role as Homework Club Coordinator on the Senior Campus
We also have the following staff on leave next year and we wish them a restful and safe period of absence:
- Ben Swift will take Long Service Leave for Term 1
- Brad Wooding will take Long Service for Term 1
- Libby Farmer will be on leave for all of 2019
- Elizabeth Saunders will be on leave for 2019
As this is our last newsletter of the year, I wish all of our families a happy and safe holiday period. May God bless your time as a family, and I look forward to seeing you all in the New Year.
Head of College
Yet again it has been a privilege to serve you as Head of Campus in 2018. I have now come to the end of my fifth year at the Junior Campus and am incredibly grateful to God for calling me to such a special place. While life will always be filled with ups and downs, I would like us to think a little on some of the ups of 2018.
I first want to start by thanking our School Captains for this year: Oliver Akhavan, Eloise King, Elijah Walsh and Cara Millard. It has been a privilege to serve alongside you as we lead the Junior Campus together. You have been nothing short of inspirational this year as you have driven the ‘We Can Make a Difference’ fundraiser in Mark G and Mrs Clarke’s memory. I wish you every blessing as you head into High School and I look forward to hearing of the wonderful things you will be able to accomplish in the years to come.
Next I want to turn my attention to Year 6, an outstanding group of students. Some of our Year 6 cohort were also the first students ever to begin in our Kindy. They have known each other, and I have known some of them now for seven years. I think it is safe to say that ‘we just ‘get’ each other!’ I’m not quite sure what I will do without your smiling faces in 2019, but I encourage you to continue to shine in High School. Go and share your incredible talents with your high school peers and teachers.
To all of our other students, from Kindy to Year 5, it has been a delight to spend time with you in 2018. You’ve made me laugh, you’ve made me cry (happy tears of course) and you have shown us the very best effort and energy throughout the year. Have the best school holidays possible and I can hardly wait to see you in 2019!
At this time it is important to consider those who have supported us throughout the year, and to begin I want to thank the teacher aides, IT Department, grounds crew, admin staff and Business Office for their dedication to their work, to our students and to the community. Life sure does get busy and it is through the dedication of this team working hard in the background that everything always comes together on the day.
To our PoP parents: I want you to know that you should be incredibly proud of your children and your efforts in raising such wonderful young people. Your patience and persistence in supporting them, not only in their homework — but through their personal challenges — is a testament to your love and care for each one of our students. Rest up… You have done a great job Mum and Dad, (Grandma and Grandpa!).
This year in particular I know that the Prince of Peace Lutheran Church has prayed for and financially supported many of the College’s initiatives. I pray that in all things you do that all glory and praise goes to Him who sustains us all.
Now to my closest team mates, my rock and safety net… Mr Hulland, Mrs Schmidt and Mrs Molkentin! So much goes on in each day and week of the school year. The journey through 2018 has been quite the rollercoaster and I have loved every minute of throwing my arms in the air with you and enjoying the ride. Can’t wait to do it again in 2019!
And finally… my heartfelt thanks goes to the teachers of our Campus. These incredible people show up every day, rain hail or shine. They weep when their students hurt, they celebrate when their students succeed and they cheer the loudest on the sidelines when the going gets tough. There is nothing easy about being a teacher, in fact, it is an incredibly difficult and challenging job that requires a steely determination to push through and always seek the very best for each little person in their class. At the end of the year the bonds between students and their teachers are strong and it is a very sad moment to have to say good bye. Thank you again to our teachers, our rock stars!
I wish all families a truly refreshing holiday period. May it be filled with fun family-time! I pray that the Christmas period will also be a wonderful time of reflection as we remember the immense gift given freely to us all in the form of a baby boy. Blessings and I can’t wait to see you all in 2019.
All of my Love, Mrs V xoxox
Head of Junior Campus
The musings of an empathetic mum, teacher, leader and global digital citizen (aka Mrs V).
PART 8: Genuine Human Connection?
Genuine human connection has been the backbone of society for a millennia. Cultures have transferred their entire histories through storytelling, rituals, routines and human interaction. As a modern community, we have rushed headlong towards the new era of ‘connection’. We can all reach out our hand and hold up our smart phone, tablets, or console and revel in its ability to connect us instantly with other people and cultures around the world.
Now, more than ever, we have an opportunity to connect with each other in mere seconds. Text messages, phone calls, email, Facebook messages, Tweets and Instagram photos. If we want to reach out to anyone at any point in our day, we can. Where once we would meet for coffee and cake, now we sign in to a Skype call. Brief emoji-laden text messages have replaced phone calls, and three-line emails have replaced hand-written letters. But have we forgotten how to connect with each other on a human level. Experts warn that millennials are the most ‘connected’ generation to have ever lived but a significant proportion of them report that they are plagued by loneliness.
So let’s consider a few statistics… did you know that?
- It takes 90 minutes for the average person to respond in email, but it takes on average only 90 seconds for the average person to respond in text message.
- 80% of smart phone users check their phones within 15 minutes of waking up every day.
- More than 90% of all smart phone users say they have their phones within reach 24 hours a day 7 days a week — scarily this statistic was from 2007. These days, the experts’ best estimate is much closer to 98% of smart phone users keep their phones within reach 24 hours a day.
- Psychologists report that constant checking is becoming a phenomena. It is leading to stress conditions, issues around self-worth, and disconnection within the community.
- Ironically, those who check social media the most are becoming the ones that feel most disconnected. Reports show that 44% of ‘constant checkers’ expressed feeling disconnected from their family and friends even when they are with them.
Fun Fact: Did you know that it has only been 10 years since the iPhone was released! I wonder… can you imagine life without your smart phone in 2019?
Genuine Connection: How connected are you?
So how connected are you? I want you to consider the following statements and see how many you can agree with:
- I have written a handwritten card or letter to a close friend or relative in the last fortnight.
- I have suggested and carried through with a ‘face to face coffee catch up’ with a friend or family member in the last week.
- I have shared a meal at the table with my family, with no devices (including mum and dad’s phone) in the last three days.
- I have actually followed through on most of my ‘we will have to catch up soon’ texts and messages sent in the past month.
- I have practised restraint in replying to messages, choosing to wait at least a full day to respond to texts and emails.
If you said yes to all of these statements, I applaud you and aspire to be you. However, I suspect that most people —like me — will have struggled to say yes to two or more of these statements.
So as we prepare for this Christmas season, I encourage you to consider true human connection. What did it look like in the past, what were the best parts of human connection that you would love to reinstate this Christmas season, and what would it mean to you and your loved ones to really spend more time together being truly connected?
And so I challenge you at this special time of the year to prioritise people, connection and genuine face to face communication… prioritise them over texts, typing, emails and tweeting. I have included a few suggestions which you might like to try over this holiday period:
Mrs V’s Christmas Challenge:
- Declare a device-free zone in your house. In this area there are to be no phones, tablets, laptops or gaming consoles. Perhaps bring out the board games, puzzles or cards and just sit them on the floor in this space. See what happens.
- Draft and implement a face to face family communication expectation, where it is agreed that when two people are speaking to each other that they place their devices face down on the table, or against your leg so that you can maintain eye contact and genuinely listen to what is being said.
- Attempt a Screen-Free Day, or if you are game… a screen-free week!
- Attempt a text-free day where all conversations are carried out in full, either face to face or over the phone.
- By the end of the school holidays get every family member to write a letter or postcard to a friend or relative.
- Challenge yourself to wake up, have a shower and eat breakfast before you check your phone in the morning.
- Check your usage statistics (now available on Android and iPhone). Each week over the holidays try to improve your efforts in decreasing screen time and social media usage.
- Follow up with at least one person to whom you have texted or commented ‘we should catch up soon!’ and actually catch up with them 🙂
All the very best, friends. I have loved talking with you, challenging you and myself to seek to understand more, try more and talk more with our children.
All my love and Merry Christmas!
♥ Mrs V xox
(Novice Minecraft player, Level 11 Clash Royale Clan Leader, firm but loving digital parent, mistake-maker and Head of Junior School)
If you missed any of the previous Tech Talks in my series, you can find them on our College website here »
www.forbes.com [source from Morgan Stanley]
Since our last edition of POPCORN, six of our students and Mrs John have travelled to Yale University, New Haven, Connecticut to compete in the Tournament of Champions at the World Scholar’s Cup. 2700 scholars from over 50 countries participated in the tournament. The students competed in Collaborative Writing, Debating and the Scholars Bowl. They also had the chance to explore the Yale University Campus. Our students should be so proud of what they have achieved, as they all excelled. The results are:
Achievements — 1800 students participated in the Junior Division (600) teams
Jessica Gentle– 5 gold, 2 silver medals, top 3% of Junior Scholars
Oscar Suna– 1 gold, 3 silver medals
Georgia Glentworth – 1 gold, 2 silver medals
Alexander Hegner – 3 silver medals
Lucas Smith – 2 silver medals
Ryan Orford – 1 silver medal
Team Jess, Georgia and Oscar were in the:
Top 10% – Team Bowl – silver medal
Top 100 Team Debate – gold medal
Top 18% Writing – silver medal
Top 13% Champion Team Countdown
We affirm the students for these outstanding results and their willingness to represent the College. We also thank Mrs John for her leadership of this amazing experience. We also acknowledge Mrs Edwards, Mr Brookes and Mr Russell for their support of the students as they prepared to compete.
Class of 2018
Last week we farewelled the Class of 2018. I hope they will fondly remember their time at Prince of Peace, the opportunities and the friends they have made. They each take a piece of Prince of Peace with them. We are proud of these students and we wish them well in the future.
A special ‘thank you’ to the parents of our Year 12 students for your support of the College. I thank the students for their generous gift of the Value Totem which is a welcome addition to the forecourt landscape and is a wonderful reminder to our community of the ten Lutheran values which shape our students’ educational experience.
Vincent Van Gogh is considered one of the greatest artists of all time, yet he only sold one painting is his lifetime. The painting he sold was “The Red Vineyard at Arles (The Vigne Rouge),” which is now in the Pushkin Museum of Fine Arts in Moscow. He made 400 francs, which is equal to about $2,000 today for the sale. If the “Red Vineyard” should ever be sold — which is not likely to happen — it would be one of the world´s most expensive paintings (equivalent to the Mona Lisa). So while Van Gogh made essentially no money in his lifetime from painting, he still toiled at his craft and painted over 900 works of art. Van Gogh proves that you don’t need awards or an income to be proud of what you achieve or how you live your life. I tell this story because I always feel tension because a lot of students will be acknowledged for their achievements this year, but equally there are many students who have done wonderful things and will not be recognised with an award. I want every student of the Senior Campus to know that I am proud of what they have achieved in 2018. They should be proud of those times that they reached out to a friend, or did what was right at great cost, or persevered in a subject that they did not enjoy, or wore their uniform well, or greeted me on the steps of a morning (especially if you are not a morning person).
As I reflect on 2018, there is much to celebrate. This year famous physicist Stephen Hawking lost his battle with motor neurone disease. On his diagnosis many years ago, doctors predicted that he would live for only a few years. However, Hawking defied the odds and lived a full and inspiring life despite needing a wheelchair to get around, and a computer to communicate his ideas. Hawking’s courage, humour and determination to get the most from life was an inspiration. Some of his words of wisdom that I would like you to remember during your upcoming well-deserved break are:
“Remember to look up at the stars and not down at your feet. Try to make sense of what you see and wonder about what makes the universe exist. Be curious. And however difficult life may seem, there is always something you can do and succeed at. It matters that you don’t just give up.”
Be proud of what you have achieved in 2018, learn from your mistakes (because we all make them) and make a plan for what you will do differently, and always be prepared to be the best version of yourself possible.
Congratulations to all of the students who received awards today, please find a photo gallery of awards recipients in the Parent Portal »
Congratulations to all of our students on their efforts; when you get to the end-of-school year please take the time to rest, relax and reflect.
Wishing you peace and good will to you and your loved ones this Christmas season. As we celebrate the birth of our Lord, I pray that you enjoy the opportunity to reflect on the blessings God bestows on us. Wishing you a relaxing and refreshing time with family and friends.
Head of Senior Campus
Chill, Chat, Chocolate (the Senior Campus girls’ group) is donating to Share the Dignity’s Christmas fundraiser of #ITSINTHEBag. We have filled six bags, however we require more bags to fill — we would really appreciate any donations of new or near-new ladies hand bags, beach bags or backpacks.
We have received many of the essential items — thank you — we are now looking for the special extra items such as deodorant, face wipes, tissues, perfume, hair ties, hairbrushes / combs, undies, socks, sunscreen, stationery, towels, ponchos, scarves, moisturizer and any other item that would be nice for a woman displaced from her home to receive.
Please no sharp objects, food or pharmaceuticals, many thanks for your support of this worthy cause.
Director of Care & Wellbeing 7-12
Junior Campus Sport
Queensland Catholic Netball Competition
Last night was the final night of the QC (Queensland Catholic) Netball competition. Three teams from POP have been competing at Downey Park each Tuesday night for 10 weeks. We have had some serious losses, many major wins and lots of pretty even matches. The girls have learnt many new skills and had lots of fun.
Team sports are a fabulous opportunity to learn, not only the skills of your chosen sport, but also some really important life skills. Team work, resilience, perseverance and kindness to name but a few.
PopStars 3: Anuksha, Charlize, Eesha, Jaime, Kristy, Mia, Olivia, Sara, Sienna C and Sienna G. For several of these girls this was their first season of netball. These players have improved out of sight as the season progressed and the team has won the last five games. They now play as a team rather than seven individual players. Well done girls, it has been a joy to coach you.
PopStars 2: Amelia, Bethany, Chloe, Eloise, Freya, Giaan, Jasmine, Leni and Maddie. PopStars 2, coached by Mrs Kelly Ahearn, had some really tough matches but they persevered and just enjoyed playing the sport that they love with their friends.
PopStars 1: Annabelle, Cara, Claire, Ella, Mia, Piper, Scarlett and Sienna. This is the third year I have coached most of these girls. It has been an absolute pleasure to watch them grow into not only excellent netballers, but also passionate, confident and caring young women. They are the epitome of what we hope our Prince of Peace students are. Well done girls.
A special thanks to the parents of all the girls who have supported us each week with cheering and fruit snacks. Thanks also to Caitlin Hird who has been the umpire for all the teams all season. I have had another great year of coaching these girls and look forward to doing it all again next year.
Last Friday, Prince of Peace was invited, along with Samford, Albany Hills and Northside to Eatons Hill State School for their Inaugural Netball Carnival. The tournament had two divisions — Year 5 and Year 6. By the end of the day the Year 5 team (Amelia, Annabelle, Anuksha, Eesha, Georgia, Jaime, Kayla and Sienna), were one point away from getting into the semifinals. The Year 6 team (Cara, Claire, Ella, Jasmine, Leni, Mia, Scarlett and Sienna), was successful in getting to the semis and were then victorious in a nail-biting final that went to extra time. We now hold the trophy until next year. We thank Eatons Hill for organising this day, which was a great opportunity for the girls to compete in a school-based competition. I would also like to thank Mr Wooding for driving the bus for us and providing some very serious support from the sidelines. Thank you to Caitlin for umpiring both our teams. Having a qualified umpire is vital in keeping the standard of the game high. Thanks to all the parents who also came to support. A great day was had by all!
HATCHED Theatre – Holiday Workshops
HATCHED Theatre is running half-day (9am to 12pm) school holiday workshops this December and January for Junior College students. Holiday workshops will focus on creative, engaging and fun drama games and activities. Each workshop will see the group working together to develop their improvisation, story-telling and performance skills. Workshops will be led by Lucy Lott, who has extensive experience running drama workshops for young people aged 4 to 18, with a focus on inclusion, unique ability and participation.
Workshop dates include December 10, 11 and 14, and January 24 and 25. Cost is $35 with multiple and sibling bookings receiving discounts. Venue TBC. Please register your interest by email.
Visit www.hatchedtheatre.com for more information.
Memorial Sunday 2 December 1st Advent
Worship service 9am with Holy Communion
Message: “Winter is coming” Luke 21:25-36
Thought for the Week
Courage does not always roar. Sometimes it is a quiet voice at the end of the day, saying, ‘I will try again tomorrow’.
(Mary Anne Radmacher)
Christmas Services at Prince of Peace Church
Christmas Eve: 9 Lessons and Carols 7pm
Christmas Day: 7am and 9am (both with Holy Communion)
Uniform Shop News
Back-to-School Fittings: Uniform fittings are available during our usual shop hours (8am to 10am and 2pm to 4pm Tuesdays and Thursdays) – no bookings required. Growth is catered for — all items are covered by a 60 day exchange size guarantee. The final PoP Campus shop day for 2018 is Thursday 6 December.
School Break: The School Locker Northlakes Superstore, 4-6 Burke Cres is open 6 days/week during the Christmas Holidays.
Back-to-School 2019: PoP Campus Store open 8am to 1pm Tuesday 22 and Thursday 24 January – no bookings required.
Orders: Orders can be placed by phone or email through the College website using the link on the Uniform Shop page or on the Home Page or at anytime from The School Locker website. Note: If you wish to avoid home delivery fees during term times, nominate delivery to your child’s campus and provide your child’s name and class. Junior Campus orders will be delivered to your child’s class, Senior Campus orders will be delivered to reception for your child to collect the next day.
Prep Bucket Hats: Prepaid orders can be taken now for reversible bucket hats in house colours which will be delivered to class in January. These replace the Navy legionnaire hat previously required.
Junior Uniforms: The new sport skort will be available early December.
Year 9: Senior formal hats and blazers for 2019 – whether you purchase these new or second hand, please come to the shop to be fitted so you know what size you need.
Brim Hats: Out of stock – Navy hats sizes small, medium and large have been ordered and are expected by last week of November. Our apologies for the inconvenience. Navy brim hats can be purchased from Lowes Stafford and Chermside in the mean time if hats are required urgently.
Fridge-to-Go Lunch Bags: Get ready for Summer! We have insulated lunch bags with chiller panels the full width of the bag – ensuring everything in your child’s lunch bag will be kept cool and safe to eat for eight hours! These bags are tough and last on average three to four years making them good value for money at $37. We have eight different bags to choose from, and spare chiller panels are available to have on hand in case your child’s lunch bag is not retrieved until the morning.
Second Hand: If you wish to buy or sell second hand uniforms there are two options:
- For private sales: please visit our very active PoP Second Hand Uniform Buy & Sell Facebook group
- Donated second hand uniforms are now managed by PoP P&F – please check with Reception as to upcoming stall dates. Donations are welcome at either Campus Reception, bagged and labelled as “donation uniforms”.
The school year is nearly over, but the fun at OSHC will continue past that date. We are open from the 10 – 21 of December and then re-open again on 7 January. Our doors open at 6:30am Monday to Friday until 6pm. We have plenty of activities planned such as a trip to the Chermside Pools, a 20m obstacle course, and even a visit from the Roar soccer coaches. For more information, feel free to pop down to OSHC for a visit or to obtain sign-up forms. We look forward to hearing from you, please find our program here.
The P&F AGM and final meeting for 2018 will be held tonight, Wednesday 28 November, at 7pm in the Junior Campus Library. At this meeting all committee positions fall vacant and need to be voted in again. If you would like to volunteer for any role please attend. We will also discuss upcoming events for 2019, and fund distribution. Thank you and we hope to see you there.