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Junior School News

Junior School News



From Acting Director of Junior School, Ms Gabrielle Bransby

We’ve hit the ground running here in the Junior School. We’ve already had so much excitement this term. Our lunchtime and after school art, hip hop dance and chess classes have begun. The boys have also been involved in two big sporting days: trials and Blitz Day.

Last week, I spoke to the boys about a new initiative in the Junior School. We’re introducing 5 Core Values that will underpin who we are, how we act and what we value. I’ve discussed the meaning and the importance behind the creation of our core values with the boys, and how they will be the principles that guide us to make the right choices on a daily basis. 

We introduced our first Core Value this week: ‘RESPECT.’ Last week, Mr Ghattas worked with our SRC members to brainstorm examples of how students can show respect on the playground and in the classroom. The Class Captains presented this to their classes on Tuesday, which generated great discussion points. This has been our wellbeing focus and some great activities have been created. Below are some excellent examples that 5 Blue students Oliver Lorimer and Issac Occhiuto created with Ms Zivanovic. 

Oliver's example of how students could show respect

Oliver’s examples of how students can show respect

5 Blue student, Issac Occhiuto's example of how students could show respect on the playground and in the classroom

Issac’s examples of how students can show respect


Feast Day of Mary MacKillop – From Assistant Director of Identity & Student Formation, Mr Stephen Ghattas

Wednesday 8 August is the Feast Day of Mary MacKillop, who we now celebrate as Australia’s first saint (St Mary of the Cross).

Mary MacKillop loved God and always listened to what God was saying to her throughout the events in her life. She always asked God for help for herself, family, friends and the poor. This year is even more special as it marks the 10th anniversary of her canonisation.  In class this week, the students will reflect on Mary’s life and how she helped to educate the less fortunate.  We strongly encourage the boys to reflect on Mary’s main message: 

‘To never see a need, without doing something about it.’

JS Blitz Day – From Assistant Director of Co-Curricular, Mr Matthew Ryan

Last Thursday, the annual Blitz Day Carnival was held at Queens Park for our Junior School students.  This is a great opportunity for the students to compete and support each other in a House competition consisting of Rugby, Football and AFL.  The weather was very kind to us and we enjoyed a beautiful day with great conditions. 

Each team played three games throughout the day and there was plenty of tough competition and sportsmanship being shown on the field.  Big congratulations to Tevlin and O’Connor Houses, who were crowned Blitz Day champions.  The following students were voted best on ground by the referees and teachers.


Year 5 – Ned O’Halloran

Year 6 – Jack Minogue


Year 5 – Jed Jarrett

Year 6 – Liam Lynch


Year 5 – James Tucker

Year 6 – Bailey Gosbell

Finally, a big thank you to all of the staff involved on the day – especially Mr. Coleman and the Year 9 PASS students who helped with refereeing and organising the House teams. It was great to have you involved.

Learning Hub News – From Literacy & Innovation Teacher, Ms Natasha Zivanovic

Debating Round One

There are so many changes we’ve had to make over the last few months and we’ve missed out on some face-to-face activities. However, thanks to technology, we were able to started the debating season virtually. 

The topic for debate was ‘That we should ban having birds as pets.’ Both Waverley teams put forward strong arguments, presenting their cases clearly and firmly rebutting the Kambala team’s cases. The boys did themselves and Waverley very proud, with one win and one loss.

Congratulations on a great start to the season, everybody! This week we debate against Coogee Prep. 

Students preparing for Waverley vs Kambala

Students preparing for Waverley vs Kambala

Waverley vs Kambala

Waverley vs Kambala

Appreciating Illustrators 

This term the boys are exploring literature by Australian authors and illustrators on the Children’s Book Council of Australia 2020 shortlist. Searching for Cicadas was our focus last week. This stunning picture book engages and informs young readers through its unique melding of fact and storytelling. The boys stepped into the role of an illustrator and appreciated the work that goes into producing illustrations for picture books.

Having an appreciation for art also helps us to develop an appreciation for each other and how we are all unique in our own ways.

5 Indigo student Thomas George working on his illustration

5 Indigo student Thomas George working on his illustration

The collection of Year 5 illustrations inspired by Searching for Cicada.

Year 5 illustrations inspired by Searching for Cicada

Searching for Cicadas, inspiration for the Year 5 illustration project.

Searching for Cicadas, our inspiration

A New Book Hits the Shelves

Allowing boys to select their own reading material is an important aspect of encouraging boys to read. Recent research states that giving boys a choice of reading material will promote their love for books. With that in mind, it’s important to expose your sons to different texts and encourage them to choose. Over the last few weeks I’ve been informally researching what the boys’ interests are to curate a diverse selection of books for the boys to read. 

Year 5 students with a new read in the Learning Hub

Year 5 students with a new read in the Learning Hub

Book Week Celebrations

Our Waverley pop-up bookshop will kick off our Book Week celebrations on Monday 24 August from 9am – 12:30pm in the Learning Hub. Students will visit the bookshop with their class on Monday from 9:00 am. Students are welcome to bring cash or their debit card to shop. It’s a great way to encourage your son to read and books will start at $15. 

During Book Week, our boys will also have the opportunity to watch a virtual performance, The Greatest Discovery, which combines a love of reading and books with a celebration of diversity and competition. A selection of The CBCA Shortlisted Books of 2020 comes to life in this performance, encouraging the boys to engage with reading in an active and energetic manner while reinforcing the idea of inclusivity and a celebration of endeavour rather than competitive results.

Popular author Tim Harris will be our virtual guest on Tuesday 25 August. Tim is a former primary school teacher and his stories are filled with quirky scenarios, loveable characters and plenty of imagination. The presentation aims to promote reading and creative writing. 

Book Week Competitions  

If your son is keen to enter one or both of the competitions running for Book Week, he still has time. Submissions are due on Monday 17 August. Winners will be announced on Friday 28 August.