Pastoral Care & Wellbeing

Grace and Peace to you all,

Four weeks into Term 1 and I must say as a new member to St John’s Lutheran Primary School, it has been wonderful to meet and greet many of the students and families of St John’s. Thank you all for the warm welcome, extended to new students and families, and also to new staff. It is very admirable to note the level of care that exists amongst our school family. As highlighted in last edition, a sense of community and level of care is extremely important. Particularly with recent events unfolding and even taking us unawares at a local, national, and global level, which is why our approach to relationships is key – with self, one another and with our God.

As you would be aware our school fosters a Christian ethos and a Christian approach to education, which is embedded in our daily life and the partnerships that exist at school. Students are explicitly taught and encouraged to show respect, empathy, and forgiveness of self, and toward one another. Respect and Relationships can be noted as the bookends of our framework for Building Positive Behaviours.

In addition to Building Positive Behaviours, wellbeing is also an integral part of the school’s curriculum and is explicitly taught through several key programs across the school.

In today’s edition, we will explore one of these programs. implemented from Prep to Year Six. Grow Your Mind is a positive mental health program that focuses on enhancing resilience and wellbeing and provides a consistent language for students, staff, and parents alike. It is aligned to the Australian Curriculum in the Key Learning Area of Health and the Early Years Learning Framework. Grow Your Mind is directly linked to the brain, with a playful animal analogy that resonates with one and all. It has been independently reviewed and listed in the Be You programs directory.

Grow Your Mind focuses on topics such as compassion, gratitude, mindfulness, brain awareness, courage, and resilience.

As part of the systematic and whole school approach to the delivery of Grow Your Mind, students are introduced to the animals of the brain. They are;

  • The Wise Owl (Prefrontal Cortex) who helps you to make good decisions
  • The Elephant (Hippocampus) who helps you to lock in information and store memories
  • The Guard Dog (Amygdala) who senses danger and helps you to fight, flight or flee
  • The Sifting Sooty (Ras) who blocks out distractions and helps you to focus
  • The Sensitive Octopus (Insular Cortex) who helps you to be aware of how you are feeling and think of how others may be feeling too.

Grow Your Mind also promotes prioritising your own emotional wellbeing. Fill your own cup and prioritise some self-care; a walk, read a book, a swim etc. as we know we can only be effective in helping others when we are caring for ourselves also.

How else can you get involved in Grow Your Mind? We encourage you to discuss with your child/ren, the animals within their brains as they grow and learn more about them.

  • Encourage your child to draw a picture of their favourite animal
  • Discuss who your child can talk to when they feel a certain way or discuss what makes them feel a certain way
  • Draw 5 things or people your child is thankful for
  • Draw a bucket and draw/write inside, the ways you can be kind to yourself or ideas on how to fill someone else’s bucket today.

For further information on this fabulous program – Grow Your Mind, please visit: Grow Your Mind 

More information on Growing a mentally healthy generation can be found at Be You Be You is the national mental health in education initiative delivered by Beyond Blue in collaboration with Early Childhood Australia and Headspace. It supports the development of a positive, inclusive, and resilient learning community.

Uniform Expectations and Reminders

“Train a child in the way he should go, and when he is old, he will not turn from it.” Proverbs 22:65

As per our uniform expectations, “the students are to view themselves as ambassadors of the school in that the uniform is worn correctly.” If you have any questions regarding uniform wear, suitability of footwear and student grooming; please do not hesitate to arrange a time to discuss such with me or contact the administration office for a copy of the Uniform Expectations for our school.

A reminder of the St John’s Core Values – 6 Rs

In working in partnership with you, we continue to look forward to fostering a safe and supportive learning and teaching environment for all. Thank you for your support in reinforcing the 6 Rs not only at school but also at home.

Respect – ‘for self and others’

Rigour – ‘work hard, work tough’

Responsibility – ‘for learning and actions’

Resilience – Keep on keeping on

Random Acts of Kindness – ‘It’s cool to be kind’

Relationships – ‘the reason’

Student and Service Representative Council (SSRC)

We will soon be holding the election process for the Student and Service Representative Council, which is built from our core beliefs of students being active participants in their learning. We believe student opinions are valuable and welcome students to have a voice regarding school life at their school. The SSRC is a group of students who have been formally elected by their peers.

Aims of the SSRC:

  • Increase communication between students and staff in School decision making processes
  • Engage students in the organisation of varying school functions and the responsibility for any money raised from such functions
  • Promote participation and involvement in school activities
  • Foster a commitment to the ethos of the School
  • Encourage the commitment of students to, and responsibility for, the care of others in our community, the wider community and the environment

Membership of the SSRC consists of:

  • The Service Team Leader from Year 6 and 1 elected student (the Service Team Leader was selected at the end of the previous school year for the next 12 months)
  • 2 students from each class in year levels from Year 2 to Year 5 elected by class members
  • The Principal and Director Pastoral Care and Wellbeing and any other staff member who has a specific interest in projects or by invitation.

Teachers will be speaking to students regarding this process in the coming weeks, and we look forward to electing the members of the student body to join the SSRC for 2022.

Tamara Carroll