Magis 2013 in brief

The Magis year began in January when six of our students took part in the (ALVA) Summer Studio at UWA. In February, at the High Achievers' Assembly, Year 12 student William Paparo was appointed Senior Magis Scholar. Throughout the year William brought the depth and quality of the vision of Magis to his fellow students.

Mock Trials began in February with Peter Quinlan generously coaching our team of students from Years 10, 11 and 12. Year 9 students Sophie Minissale and Mahala Longley began a series of creative writing workshops at the Fremantle Literature Centre. They continue this extension into 2014 and beyond. In 2013 all Year 8 students studied a term of Philosophy, this offered extension for all students in the year group. In addition to this Philosophy Club ran weekly for students from Year 7 to 12.

Media Club began activities this year with a number of major projects. Students produced weekly editions of The Wrap and initiated the 23rd Word, a student publication. Furthermore students worked on audio/visual productions for the official Opening of the St Louis Gymnasium and Open Day as well as the Shine Ball, Valette and Presentation Night in November. This year Media Club included students from Years 6 to 12.

The Astronomy Club had another exciting year. Mr Mazur took a beautiful shot of a comet as it passed the College with the Club's new camera. Open Day on 16 March show-cased the multitude of wonderful opportunities offered by the College to our students to provide excellence in co-education. In the Library Magis Media Club students screened some of their productions as well as offering visitors a postcard of the College.

In May there was a Scitech Brain Challenge Day for our Year 8 students together with gifted students from other Catholic schools. Also in May a group of 25 students from Years 7 to 12 spent the day learning about mobile journalism using the iPad with Ivo Burum. They were all able to produce a finished video by the end of the day.
The Magis Maths program started in second term. Students from Years 7 to 10 took part in the Challenge Competition for three weeks starting Week 14. In June we ran the inaugural John XXlll College Primary Philosothon at the Art Gallery of Western Australia. This offered a brilliant extension for gifted students from Year 5 to 7. This year 70 students from 9 local schools attended. In 2014 we will have many more schools involved, including a primary school in Singapore who are sending a team to participate.

At the beginning of July, Year 12 students William Paparo, Anna Dolin and Paige Fairweather travelled to Sydney for the Australian Ignatian Debating Competition at St Ignatius' College. William was named in the All Australia Ignatian Debating Team. In Term 3, During Founder's Time, Year 10 finalists of the Atticus Finch Justice Award presented their speeches. They carefully linked the Ignatian values to themes from To Kill a Mockingbird. In Term 4 a workshop, with local writer Amanda Betts, ran for enthusiastic writers in Year 11. Also, gifted Year 8 students were challenged by a creative thinking and philosophy day with gifted students from other Catholic schools. Students made the comment that they would like to do this form of workshop more often. 2013 has been busy for Magis.

Ignatius Centre in brief

2013 has been an exciting time for the Library. We set up a Year 12 study area with a class set of MacBooks. Library hours have extended for upper school during examination time and on Wednesday. We were very fortunate to have Ben Lamberto working in the Library every Wednesday morning during first semester for his work experience. Ben was a very welcome addition to our team.

While it is always busy in the Library there were some special activities for students this year. On 26 March Australian author Scot Gardner spent the day with students from Years 9 and 10. He is an exciting writer whose work appeals to teenage readers, in particular, boys. Later in first semester West Australian author Julia Lawrinson visited the Library. Julia gave lectures and conducted Creative Writing Workshops with secondary students from selected year groups.

This year the Library appointed secondary students as Library Monitors. Our monitors are; Jonty Binet, Alexander King, Paris Horne and Alice Chaney. We are delighted to have such a dedicated team of students working with us. They are involved in shelving, checking books in and out, writing reviews, setting up displays and helping with Apple TV in the Library.

In second semester Book Week was extremely busy. Two authors, Philip Gwynne and Wendy Binks, ran sessions with primary and lower secondary students. Mrs Holmes ran Bingo for primary students while Miss Woods invited staff and students to imagine themselves somewhere in the universe via her green screen. Mr Edwards read picture books to primary students at lunch time. Mr Connery did a brilliant session on Foldify. In the image below Jonty Binet, Library monitor, demonstrates the art of folding to an enthralled primary student. During Thursday lunchtime Mrs Holmes and the primary students were creative with bookmarks. Bookmarks have been a consistent motive of Book Week, with Miss Woods creating bookmarks for students and staff.

The Library has continued to provide IT support for staff and students. Our IT specialist, Lauren Truscott, runs excellent, short PDs for staff on Tuesdays after school. She has focussed on a variety of IT skills. Mrs Truscott is also available in the Library before school to assist students with any IT questions they might have. Library Help Desk staff are also able to help with such questions.

The Library has added substantially to our fiction and nonfiction collections. This year we also added to our eBook collection on Overdrive. We have a collection of over 700 eBooks, both fiction and non-fiction. The eBook collection also compliments Australian Curriculum. Overdrive can be accessed on iPad, PC or any mobile device. We expect to build on this collection next year.

Dr Annette Pedersen
Magis & Ignatius Centre Coordinator