Deputy Principal - Learning & Teaching

At Salesian College we offer many extra learning programs and some of them are quite new so in this edition of the Newsletter I thought I might give you an overview of what’s on offer.

For Year 7 & 8 – Savio Campus

BOOST (Janene Baseggio)

The purpose of BOOST is to develop effective learning strategies especially in literacy and numeracy. Building Learning Power and the development of positive, strategic self-talk are central to this learning.

Data, gathered via on demand testing conducted in Term 2 or 3 of Year 6, which is confirmed by the primary school teacher is used to determine who is offered a place in BOOST. Acceptance in writing from parents is required.  BOOST is an elective and takes the place of LOTE. Because of this it is currently a 2 year program (students are not in a position to pick up a LOTE in year 8). Homework and ongoing assignments are not features of the program. An interim report and non AusVELS report will be provided

BOOST numeracy:

Numeracy in BOOST is preparatory. BOOST teachers prepare students for the unit being covered in class by developing prior knowledge required in order to manage the current unit of work. BOOST teachers need to provide clear explanations and modelling, step by step instructions about using the process (if applicable) and providing 1 on 1 time to work through key concepts so that students are well prepared before they cover the topic in class.

BOOST literacy:

"Language and the ability to communicate effectively is a key foundation to students’ capacity to learn in most general ways. A better developed knowledge of language and how it is used means a greater capacity to learn and to manage and direct one’s activity as a learner (Munro, 2005)”

BOOST teachers develop student literacy knowledge by explicitly teaching comprehension and spelling strategies so that they are better equipped to manage the demands of secondary schooling.

BOOST Enrichment (Jodie FitzGerald)

BOOST Enrichment is a relatively new program that is offered to our Year 7 and 8 students as a semester based program. Each semester, students are selected based on their literacy and numeracy data, their assessment and reporting data and classroom teacher recommendations. This program is aimed at further extending students who are recognized as needing further extension.

During their time in BOOST Enrichment students deepen and refine their learning and research skills by focusing on an area that they are interested in. The theme for Year 7’s is “Passions Projects” and the theme at Year 8 is “Community Connectedness”. The Building Learning Power principles are deeply immersed in the program and it is student lead. Students can work independently or collaboratively on their projects and they keep a learning journal to reflect on their progress, growth and challenges.  

To attend these session students come out of three of their core classes each fortnight. They use Daymap to catch up on work missed, however this is negotiated with their teachers. At the end of each semester we have a celebration where students showcase their work to the College community. An invitation into BOOST Enrichment is a great accomplishment and our students and their families should be very proud.

For Year 9 – Mazzarello Campus

As well as our Alternative Year 9 Campus and Curriculum there is a Year 9 Agricultural Scholarship on offer for two students. In conjunction with Fish Creek Farm Speckle Park Stud, Salesian College “Rupertswood” is excited to announce a new cattle scholarship program for Year 9 students. The scholarship is for two Year 9 students to learn about the Agricultural Industry. The successful students will be trained in showing stud cattle, grooming cattle, handling them and learning about top stud cattle genetics. The scholarship will involve the successful students attending the Stud Beef Victoria Handlers Camp during the 2015 July Holidays and handle and show cattle at the Royal Melbourne Show.

All students have the opportunity to apply and will go through an application and interview process, which in itself is a great experience for them.

For Year 10 - 12 – Bosco Campus

Year 10 Health and Recreation (Megan Hill)

This course has been designed to increase our student’s awareness of their health and to provide them with opportunities to test out practical strategies that will lead to improvements in their overall levels of health. When students leave the College and enter into the adult world, our hope is that they have a basic understanding of how to look after themselves and are better equipped to make healthier and smarter choices in all aspects of their life.

The course has been designed to have a specific focus of one dimension of health per Term. Physical Health is our focus for term 1. Students have been involved in evaluating their own physical activity behaviour and addressing areas that require improvement. Students have identified opportunities within their weekly schedules where they could incorporate more physical activity and have investigated the use of modern technology for example pedometers/fitbits/mobile apps that are aligned with the 10,000 step program, which is designed to increase the number of steps we take each day, to keep us active and less sedentary. The second half of this term will see students analyse their food intake and plan and prepare a healthy meal for themselves and their families to improve upon their current eating patterns.

Term 2 will focus on Mental Health where students will work closely with members of the wellbeing team to develop their skills and knowledge in coping better during adolescence. Term 3 will focus on Social Health with students examining what a good relationship is and how to make better and safer choices when in social situations. Term 4 we will focus on Spiritual Health where students will look at the sources of influence in their lives and become better acquainted with their own values through a number of personal reflective tasks.

Throughout the year students will also be exposed to and will participate in a number of recreational activities. This will aim to not only increase their physical activity levels but also their knowledge of local community services that they can access in the future in order to maintain a healthy lifestyle.

Year 10 Life Skills (Jodie FitzGerald)

The Life Skills program was developed after conversations with our past Year 12 students about what was missing from their education. They had concerns that although they felt well equipped for University and work they had gaps in their knowledge about life. They identified things like Medicare, voting, taxation and loans; they didn’t know a great deal about any of these things and it made them uneasy. From here, the Year 10 Life Skills course was developed.

This course covers all of the areas previously mentioned, as well as learning and study tips, banking, budgeting, renting and purchasing property, credit and how to protect ourselves when it comes to deals that seem “too good to be true”.

As part of this course guest presenters will deliver information about financial literacy, our parents will get involved with the “Ironman Challenge” - which teaches our students how to wash and iron their own clothes. We also look at purchasing your first car, including how to shop around for insurance, changing a car tyre and general car maintenance.

“In Life Skills, we are given the opportunity to learn about and develop skills that can help us with learning and life. So far we have been taught useful strategies to assist us with gathering information in our classes and being able to learn better, study and understand them. As the subject progresses, we will begin to learn about other essentials such as banking, loans, how to purchase a house, etc. This subject will be great to assist us in the future.” (Aidan, Year 10)

The Reporters' Academy (Michelle Adamson)

The Reporters’ Academy is a not for profit Sports Media Production Company run exclusively to benefit young people between the ages of 14 and 18.  It is an education and training program for young people in sports media.  The project was developed in the United Kingdom and is based in Manchester.

The young people involved are highly trained and produce content including written, radio and video which in turn improves their education, employment and life chances.  The content produced by our young people is then used by partners, to promote, document and showcase.

The Reporters’ Academy crew from Salesian College are made up of six Year 10’s who are the first to be part of this exciting program at the College and in Australia.  They were selected after an application and interview process and part of their role is to also lead our College Media Team. The opportunities they have available to them by being a part of this project are very exciting and as we move forward this year, you will see lots of content made by these amazing students.

‘The Roy Boys’ is a film that they produced as their very first task for The Reporters’ Academy and demonstrates the kind of work they are capable of producing.

Click here to view The Roy Boys

Below are thoughts from some of our students involved in this exciting initiative:

Being in the Reporters Academy is such a great opportunity and has given/will give us so many opportunities to do things the average teenager wouldn't. Even just being a part of it for a few months, I have already gained so many skills and I am honored to have been chosen to be a part of such a great team – Stacey Duffy

I have learnt from The Reporters’ Academy that the more work you're putting in, the bigger the reward will be – Matthew Collett

The Reporters Academy for me this far, has been more than just another project, it has been confidence boosting, skill building, educational, and helped us form new bonds. It has opened new doors and shown us what we're capable of, in an exciting and fun way. It has and will continue to be, I'm sure, an unforgettable experience – Nikhil Hendricks

Being part of TRA is such a rare opportunity for us and something given to only a limited number of students not only at Salesian but in Australia. Because of this I'm hoping to fully benefit from everything we capture and experience so I can hopefully take away valuable skills for a career in sport or journalism, maybe even both. – Hannah Graham

It is something I never thought I would do, and it is different to anything else I've ever done before – Samuel Warwick

Careers & Pathways (Peter Krausz)

Year 10 students have the opportunity to participate in one week of work experience at any time during the year. They find their own placement in this optional program, and then complete a work experience contract, and seek permission from their Homeroom Leader and House Leader. This gives students an opportunity to try out a career interest area.

Year 10 students will also be completing an accredited careers assessment program in Term 2, which will assist them with opening up ideas about career areas that fit their interests and personality. This then leads up to the subject selection interviews that will occur in Term 3.

Year 11 students will all be interviewed in Term 2 to assist with their career and course planning.

Year 12 students are interviewed twice during the year, once in Term 1 to assist with their career and course planning, and then in Term 3 when they place their VTAC preferences into the system, together with their SEAS and Scholarship applications.

For All Year Levels

B.A.S.H.H. - Before and After School Homework Help (Teresa Pilone)

The Learning Strategies (LS) Area offers a before and after school homework help program for students on:

Wednesday morning before school- 8.00am to 8.40am.
Wednesday afternoon after school- 3.30pm to 4.30pm.

BASHH is staffed by teachers and Learning Strategies Assistants and offers students the opportunity to:

  • Complete homework in a quiet environment
  • Ask for extra assistance in subject areas
  • Research for and complete assignments
  • Prepare for upcoming tests and exams
  • Assist with organization and study skills

Students can attend one or both sessions on the same day.

On a Wednesday afternoon the LS area buzzes with energy as students have the options to:

  • Study in our Math ‘classroom’- where they receive help by Math Teachers/ Tutor and LSAs;
  • Study in our more subject general classroom where they have access to 1:1 support;
  • Choose our ‘quiet’ classroom suited to more independent and collaborative styles of studying- suited to our senior students, but nonetheless accessed by all.