Set Up For Success!

Today we welcomed all students to the start of a new school year, with a focus on how each St Clare’s girl can set herself up for success in 2020.

The ‘Set Up For Success‘ program kicked off with an individual survey in which students evaluated their strengths across these areas:

  • Spiritual Life
  • Health
  • Family and Friends
  • Connecting with Community
  • Learning Habits
  • Personal Growth
  • Managing Money

Students could choose to attend three sessions, based on the areas they recognised that they may need some more support in. These sessions were designed by staff who have these particular strengths and interests.

There were over 25 workshops running for the Set Up For Success program, and here are a few highlights:

Some students enjoyed learning how to make healthy breakfasts that will give them the energy they need for the day ahead.

In another session, students learned how to manage their time and create a schedule.

A range of outdoor workshops taught the importance of movement and physical activity, particularly as a great way to relieve stress.

Students had the opportunity to develop their spirituality during a session in the chapel. In another workshop students learned about the power of positive thinking and created their own personal mantra.


Following these incredible experiences, in the afternoon the students got to experience ‘Taster Sessions’, which highlighted all of the amazing opportunities available at St Clare’s.

Students got to explore 30 taster and information sessions, and they had a busy afternoon experiencing all that St Clare’s has to offer. Coding Club, Debating, Duke of Edinburgh, Musical Theatre – there really is something for everyone. Students were encouraged to get involved and sign up for 2020.


By the end of the day, all students were feeling inspired and motivated for 2020!

Study Hubs

Our study hubs that are happening each Day 8 of the timetable cycle are proving exceptionally popular. Led by our senior students as well as some of our 2018 HSC high achievers, the study hubs are attracting students from across all year groups. This peer mentoring is a wonderful example of how we are all called by St Clare to live a life of service.

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English Studies Excursion

Our Year 12 English Studies class ventured into State Parliament this morning to learn more about the way our state government system works.

The students participated in a tour of the State Parliament building in Macquarie Street. The level of security upon entering the building was a surprise to some. During the tour the spent time in both houses of parliament.

The Lower House, the Legislative Assembly (Green) and the Upper House, the Legislative Council (Red) provided opportunities for the students to role play parts of the democratic process. This was a great way to learn about how our system of government works.

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Take control of your learning —

There are schools across the country looking to provide better models of learning for their students. Templestowe College is just one of many emerging models that we can learn from.

There are schools and then there are, as Yong Zhao says, schools like Templestowe College (TC) in Melbourne. This is a school that walks the talk in terms of students’ agency and voice over their learning. Hence their motto, ‘take control of your learning’. The impetus for transformation was a serious decline in enrolments and facing […]

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Time to Reflect

At the Welcome Cocktail Evening last night a few of us sat back before the start of the evening and reflected on the last twelve months and how much we had achieved. We looked at all the wonderful improvements that had been made to the physical aspects of the College and how beautiful it looked in the afternoon sunset. Our College Principal made the comment that now the College looks amazing we need to focus on the learning that is happening in the classroom to make that just as amazing. This is our focus for 2018 and we look forward to sharing our learning journey over the coming months as we highlight some of the great projects we have planned for this year and beyond.

It was media theorist Marshall McLuhan who famously said we look at the present through a rearview mirror. This is what I am doing at the moment as I reflect on the last 498 posts on bluyonder. There have been some posts that were well-received, others critiqued and many that have been ignored. The blog was never going to […]

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“Outside the square”

This is a great example of what can be done when a group of educators start thinking outside the square. Can we do things better? Of course we can. We just need to start thinking a little differently about what education could look like. Seeing the wonderful learning experiences of our students involved in the UNSW Sunsprint Challenge on the weekend should inspire us to look at incorporating more of these types of projects into our classrooms.


“Horizon is the closest I have come to not just seeing outside the square, but being there.” @DartaHovey, via Twitter 6/617.

For the past 18 months I’ve been working with a team of Learning Leaders from Catholic College Wodonga (@CCWodonga) in NE Victoria, Australia, trying to solve a problem. We’re not sure, but we think we have a potential solution.

Our problem was – what is stopping students in our school from really engaging and wanting to do their best? Are we giving every student the opportunity to pursue their passions and areas of interest – in an authentic way, not just a tokenistic nod? Where do we hear our student voice?

Our solution – Horizon.Screen Shot 2017-05-15 at 1.06.54 pmHorizon is an independent (but collaborative) program that we have begun this semester for 13 students across Years 8-11.

Students effectively have a blank timetable that they fill with the following…

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The End of Efficiency is Near

Another great post from Greg Whitby about the need to reimagine the way we educate our young people. It includes this fantastic quote from Elon Musk who has pioneered the Tesla revolution around the globe.

The industrial model of schooling is characterised by its efficiency of processing children through the system en masse. That is why the model has been easy to replicate over the decades and why its processes and structures still dominate today. We have come to rely (almost blindly) on its efficiency at the expense of effectiveness […]

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St Clare’s Year 10 Team Get Underway

The UNSW Sunsprint Challenge continues to be one of the best STEM projects going around. We have four teams creating solar cars this year in our inaugural year in the project. The motivation the students have for the project is great to see with the teams spending time at lunch and after school seeing their designs become reality.

It was great to watch the Year 10 students so totally engrossed in what they were doing. They worked for two solid hours without a break and look like being a great team.. It reminded me of how critical it is that students have some investment in the learning process.

The next phase of the project is where the students start to get some feedback on how effective their designs. Once the chassis is complete each team will then fix axles, wheels, guide rollers and motors.

The girls have a little more to do to complete the body of the car with the internal bracing needing to be inserted. The car must be able to hold a one litre tetra pack milk container within the body so their design.

UNSW Sunsprint Challenge

Our Year 10 team has struggled to find the time to devote to the UNSW Sunsprint Challenge. Originally quite a large group the team is now a duo with Emily and Alicia pressing on with their design.

Today they began the construction process as part of the College’s Open Morning. Part of the Sunsprint Challenge is to document the process from start to finish so the girls thought a ‘time-lapse’ video would be a great way to show this part of the construction process.

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