Welcome to 2014 and many new initiatives for Magis and the variety of programs we offer for gifted and talented students as well as all students from years 7 to 12. A very welcome new staff member, Clare Magee, is a primary gifted and talented specialist. It is wonderful to have someone with her expertise working with us in the College. This will be an exciting year for Magis.

We are currently working on two new Magis initiatives for gifted students this year. One will focus on extension for gifted speakers from years 10 and 11. The other is a series of 16 weekly workshops, after school, in live audio engineering. We will have an information session for this in Week 4 and call for applications. I am very excited to be able to develop such interesting challenges for our gifted students. Both initiatives involve creative thinking at a high level, and complex problem solving.

Our Magis Maths program for gifted maths students will run again this year and we are exploring ideas for some further science and humanities programs. Two gifted students from Year 10 are again attending the Talented Writers' Programme at the Literature Centre. There they have an opportunity to work with gifted writers from other schools in workshops run by local and visiting authors. The Astronomy Club will again take place on Friday evenings, students need to watch the Notices on Simon for dates and times. Philosophy is being taught in Year 8 by Symon Smyth-Kirk. We will also have Philosophy Club on Friday at lunchtime for student philosophers.

Media Club meets this week to plan the year. I am in the process of organising some workshops with a local film maker for our more able members to extend their thinking and develop their critical skills. Mock Trials begins soon. Students from year 10, 11 and 12 are invited to join the College team. Students meet before school to prepare for trials that take place in the Supreme Court three times during the semester. Any interested student needs to contact Jim Fitzpatrick in the HASS Department, or me, in the Library.

To begin 2014, on Monday, January 13, 8 John XXlll College students joined students from 34 other West Australian schools in The University of Western Australia's Faculty of Architecture, Landscape and Visual Arts Design Studio. This is the tenth year we have run this studio. However this is the first year that we offered sessions in Landscape Architecture, Urban Design, Media and Visual arts, as well as Architecture. The brief given to the students was to explore the design possibilities for roof level of the new Perth Children's Hospital in Nedlands. Students had a site visit where one of the architects working on site briefed them. They then spent the rest of the week working on the project with an exhibition of their work on Friday 17 January.

Intense concentration at UWA, Lucas Smith left, Maddi Taylor right below.


2014 has begun with a delivery of new books for our student readers. We also have new titles on Overdrive for students. New books will be up on display in the Library this week. If students have problems with Overdrive they are welcome to come in to our Help Desk where Library staff can help them through the process of down loading titles to their IPads.

The 11th annual 'A Night with our Stars' is back at Westbooks on Thursday 6 March. This is a wonderful opportunity to hear from children's book authors and illustrators published in 2013, and to network with people from the children's literature community in WA. This year, all bookings and payments will be taken online at

This year there will be a number of new initiatives for students in the Library. The first is a Lego Group for interested students from years 5, 6 and 7. The group will meet on Wednesday afternoon in the Kooly Area, beginning in Week 4. Parents are welcome to join these students. If anyone has any Lego they would like to donate, please drop it into the Library Help Desk. We hope to also offer Book Clubs for various year levels. As these are organised I will invite year groups to join.

Library opening hours are from 7.30am to 5 pm Monday to Thursday. The Library closes at 3.30pm on Friday afternoon. The Library will also close on Wednesday 12 February at 3.30 for staff to attend the Regional Mass.

Annette Pedersen
Magis and Ignatius Centre Coordinator