Welcome back to Term 2. There are many things happening this term. This week we commemorated ANZAC day and heard of the sacrifice many men and women have made for our country. External examinations will take place in week 3 for Year 10 and weeks 4 and 5, Year 7 and 9 for Naplan tests.
All year groups going out on camps this term. Please plan for these camps and complete all necessary paperwork.
Week 2 – Year 11
Week 4 – Year 12 Day
Week 6 – Year 9 and 10
Week 7 – Year 7 and 8
One of the challenges facing contemporary schools and parents is how they manage screen time and digital devices. As a teacher and parent of three school aged children, I wrestle with this challenge constantly. Due to having some experience in the area both at work and home, I was invited to speak at a recent mission event at my church on the topic of Parenting in the Online Age. I learned a lot as I prepared for the talk and I thought it might be helpful to share the main ideas with our community at William Carey.
Before looking at specific strategies we might use to manage technology, I first of all recommend taking a step back to see how your approach to technology aligns with your larger view of parenting. Have you ever considered what your vision is for your children, parenting or family? If you are willing, I encourage you to spend some time this week considering these questions:
What would it look like for your child/children to flourish?
What would it look like for your family to flourish?
Your ideas about these questions should and will direct your decision making as parents, including in the area of technology. We all want good things for our kids. But we also know we are limited in time and energy so it is highly likely that our highest values and loves will take priority over the plethora of good things we want for them.
This reminds me Jesus’ words in Matthew which I shared with Year 8 students shortly before Easter:
‘9 What man among you, if his son asks him for bread, will give him a stone? 10 Or if he asks for a fish, will give him a snake? 11 If you then, who are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give good things to those who ask Him!’
(Matthew 7:9-11 HCSB)
Matthew is saying that parents, despite our own sinfulness, know what is good for our kids and we want to give it to them. If that is true, how much more will our Father in heaven give good things to those who ask him! This sounds fantastic for us. But consider it in relation to God’s son. Jesus became a man in order to die for us and he willingly walked towards the cross his entire life, but as his death drew closer he was terrified: ‘My soul is swallowed up in sorrow – to the point of death’ (Matthew 26:36-46). In his sorrow, he prayed and asked his father twice whether this cup could be taken from him before recommitting himself to his purpose and his Father’s will. In Stuart Townsend’s words:
How deep the Father’s love for us,
How vast beyond all measure,
That He should give His only Son
To make a wretch His treasure.
How great the pain of searing loss –
The Father turns His face away,
As wounds which mar the Chosen One
Bring many sons to glory.
As we return to school after Easter, I encourage you to take some time this week to consider the questions I posed earlier and reflect on the Father’s love for us demonstrated so clearly in Jesus’ death on the cross. In the next newsletter article, I will write more to help you think about moving from your vision for your children and parenting to more practical strategies you might use to manage technology and screen time effectively at home. In the meantime, my prayer is that these questions will assist you in seeking good for your families.
Grace and peace,
Mr Chris Smith
Dean of Students 7-9
Georgia McNamara our Dux from 2020 returned to W.C.C.S. to speak to Mr Thackeray’s year 11 Extension 1 Mathematics class. She shared about her journey through the H.S.C. and her tips to get the best results in Mathematics and the A.T.A.R. Georgia is currently studying Actuarial Studies and Applied Finance at Macquarie University.
Year 12 Geography recently had the opportunity to investigate the Intertidal Wetlands of Sydney Olympic Park. We ventured into the largest strand of mangroves on the Parramatta River to assess how intertidal wetlands function, the human impacts placed upon them and the adaptive management strategies that are used to protect them. The field trip was a great outdoor experience for the students and an opportunity to investigate our case study out of the classroom.