Wellbeing in Year 3

Gemma, Chloe, Saskia, Mietta, Annabel, Popp, Ziqi, Chloe, Sophie and Bella

The Year 3 girls have been exploring the practice of mindfulness since the commencement of the year and are now recognising the benefits from cultivating a focused awareness of the present moment. It is becoming increasingly important in the busy lives of our girls to provide them with a structured time to pause for a moment and regain their attention. There are many benefits of regular mindfulness practice, with the key examples for the educational setting being reducing stress, recognising emotions and enhancing focus.

Initially, the Year 3s found becoming completely still and focusing their attention on their breathing quite a challenge. Some of their reflections are outlined below:

When I do mindfulness, I feel really relaxed afterwards. It is a time where I can stop and think because it is hard to find a time to stop in a busy day in Barbreck. Sometimes when you are having a stressful day, it is hard to stop that feeling but after I do mindfulness, I always feel better about the stressful things. I am glad that we do mindfulness. Bella Burdett

Mindfulness makes me feel calm and relaxed. When I am worried, tired, sad or even happy, mindfulness helps me to stop and let everything go for a few minutes. I don’t feel sleepy in mindfulness, instead I feel very calm. When I get back into my day, everything seems more fun because I have had a chance to stop and refresh my mind. Chloé Favaloro

Within the classroom environment it is easy to recognise the improvements that have occurred through being mindful. The girls are more attentive, they are able to calm down when they are upset and are more equipped to make better decisions. Essentially, mindfulness has assisted in the development of emotional regulation and cognitive focus.

Another important element of the Year 3 Wellbeing Program is the development of social awareness and resilience. Through group discussions and role playing a variety of common scenarios, we have defined resilience as our ability to ‘rebound’ after we have experienced a difficulty or been faced with a challenge. We have adapted Helen McGrath and Toni Noble’s Bounce Back! Program, to suit the specific needs of our Year 3 students. The program provides an acronym of BOUNCE BACK with a coping statement for each letter. The acronym has been a hugely successful addition to our classrooms, with the girls now distinguishing which statement applies to the particular situation they are facing. By directly teaching the students these important coping skills, we are increasing the likelihood of them managing emotional distress, responding effectively to challenges and times of adversity, and reaching optimal levels of wellbeing.

The girls are beginning to recognise how they can use these statements each day when they are confronted with challenges. I asked the Year 3 girls which statement they found the most useful from the acronym. Here are some of their responses.

Poppy Maling – I think the most useful one for me is the letter C because it reminds me not to make problems bigger than they actually are. Sometimes I can worry about things and it feels like a really, really big deal, when it’s not really a big problem at all.

Ziqi Wang – The letter B is my favourite. It says that bad times don’t stay forever. That means that even though you might feel sad or worried about something, you won’t be sad for the rest of your life. It also reminds me to try and be happy and positive.

Rachel Carton – I have two that I think are very useful. The first one is the second letter B, blame fairly. Sometimes you need to remind yourself that accidents happen and it’s not really just one person’s fault. Or maybe I like it because it makes us think about how much is my fault and how much is just bad luck or someone else’s fault. The other one I really like is the K, keep things in perspective. This is really helpful, because I can sometimes exaggerate and overthink things. So if you remember it’s just a bit of your life it is much easier to move past it.

Miss Kirrilly Wootton
Year 3 classroom teacher
Year 6 Celebration

Date:       Thursday 1 December
Time:      5.15pm – 8.15pm
Venue:   Barbreck

Parents are asked to note the 5.15pm arrival time. 

Year 6 students remain at School at 3.30pm in order to prepare for the evening. Students wear summer uniform.

Artists-in-Residence – Rowena Martinich (’97) and Geoffrey Carran

A painted mural by artists Rowena Martinich (’97) and partner, Geoffrey Carran on the exterior wall adjacent to the Marigold Southey Sports & Aquatic Centre has been commissioned as part of the celebration of St Catherine’s 120th anniversary and Barbreck Arts Week.

Martinich and Carran have worked individually and collaboratively on their collectable artworks, commissions and residencies throughout Australia, the USA, the UK, Italy and China.

The St Catherine’s mural is a wonderful juxtaposition of the two artists’ distinctive styles. Individually, Martinich is known for her expressive shapes, slashes and drips of colourful, and often fluorescent, paint and Carran for his realistic depiction of native birds. For this work Martinich has provided a colourful abstract backdrop for Carran’s large painting of The Southern Robin.

The creative duo transformed the blank wall over a week, giving students and teachers the unique opportunity to observe a large scale installation in progress, engaging and asking questions about the process. It has been a wonderfully enriching experience for the School community, who can now proudly enjoy the work as part of St Catherine’s permanent surrounds.

Mrs Virginia Guest
Junior School Art Teacher

In order to effect a prompt start to learning in Barbreck, we remind families that school commences at 8.30am

Students settle and engage with learning from 8.30am (after arrival into classrooms commencing from 8.10am, when much of their personal belongings are organised and School work sorted in preparation for an effective start).

For those students who arrive between 8.30-8.45am (due to sibling drop off or a sibling in the ELC), they are instructed to enter classrooms very quietly and quickly and not interrupt others.

Attendance rolls are marked promptly.  Latecomers must report to the Barbreck Office in order to avoid being marked “absent”.

Sun Safety

School sunhats are required to be worn when outdoors in Terms 1 and 4 by all Barbreck students.

Clearly labelled hats must be available at all times at School throughout the above period.

Students are reminded by staff to secure their hats before moving outdoors for lessons and break times.

Students without a hat are required to sit under the shade during the periods spent outdoors.

Mrs Alana Moor Head of ELC and Junior School