During the final week of Digital Bialik, the 6B English and Humanities students had a screen break and took the opportunity to do some baking.
The class are currently reading the book Sally’s Story. In this book, the main character Sally learns about her heritage and identity and so the students decided to look at food from their own various cultures. They chose to prepare foods that were special to them and their families.
It was a great opportunity to take a break from the screen, although the class enjoyed chatting via Microsoft Teams while cooking up a storm.
We are delighted to announce that Rebecca P has been selected as a winner of the My Family Story competition, run out of the Museum of the Jewish People at Beit Hatfutsot in Israel. Our Year 7 students have participated in this program for the past 10 years and we commend Rebecca for her accomplishment.
The program, this year celebrating its 25th anniversary, connects families and Jewish communities from over 40 different countries. The participants are divided into four categories – Israel, English speaking countries, Spanish speaking countries, and Russian speaking and European countries. A small group of students was selected as winners from each category, and from these the first, second and third place will be selected. The winning works were selected by judging committees in the fields of education, art and the Jewish professional world, from among the hundreds of works submitted.
We would like to invite Bialik families to the virtual ceremony in order to announce the winners of the competition and to congratulate all participants from all over the world. The ceremony will be held on Wednesday 10 June (18th of Sivan), at 7pm IDT (Israeli time)/12pm EST and will bring together the participants from all participating countries.
Bialik College is proud to have been affiliated with this competition at Beit Hatfutsoth for the past decade, and we wish Rebecca all the best. Kol ha’kavod!
On Friday afternoon, 15 May 2020, the Years 4/5 Learning Hub would have been buzzing with excitement, as our Year 5s were due to engage in a fascinating Manhigut (Primary leaders) session with Jared Cooney Horvath, our Neuroscientist in residence. Instead, we held a dynamite on-line session with Jared on Microsoft TEAMS.
The session was all about the brain’s plasticity. Neuroplasticity, or brain plasticity, refers to the brain’s ability to CHANGE throughout life. The human brain has the amazing ability to reorganize itself by forming new connections and pathways between brain cells. To demonstrate this, Jared gave our students fun tasks that illustrated to each and every student the plasticity of their own brain. Even though we were not physically together in the Learning Hub, the buzz and excitement were very much felt, ending the week of Digital Bialik learning on a high note.
In exciting news, Bialik College is hosting five service puppies which will be participating in school life. The dogs will spend the first year of their life socialising on campus during the day and living with a Bialik foster family at night. During this current period of isolation, the puppies will live with their foster family whilst students participate in Digital Bialik and staff work from home.
The first three Labrador puppies, Daisy, Pluto and Rian arrived at their foster families’ homes this week and the other two Lagotta puppies will arrive at homes within the next three weeks.
The Centre for Service and Therapy Dogs, Australia (CSTDA) facilitates the program and provides training for the puppies at school. At the end of the 12 month period the dogs will be transferred to their eventual partners allocated by the Department of Veterans’ Affairs.
In 2014 Bialik was the first school in Australasia to be involved in “Dogs for Life”, a program partnering dogs with children and teachers in a safe and controlled environment, led by a team of highly competent, skilled and experienced trainers from the CSTDA.
The aim of the program is to educate children on how to care for pets and what is correct behaviour around dogs; to share the wonderful bonding experience that can occur between dog and person; to deal with “animal fears” and much more.
This year we celebrated Yom Ha’atzmaut, Israeli’s 72nd birthday, like never before, physically apart but together in spirit. Students from Creche to Year 12 got involved in various ways and students and many staff submitted a photo of themselves in blue and white which formed a collage. Some on the day activities included:
Celebrity Shout Outs Part 1:
Secondary School Video:
Primary School Video:
Lockdown by Julian M:
Celebrity Shout Outs Part 2:
In honour of Yom Ha’Zikaron, Zionism Victoria held a commemorative assembly to commemorate the lives of our heroic soldiers who tragically lost their lives defending the state of Israel.
Bialik Vocal Experience were asked to perform Hatikvah. Watch the beautiful video below:
Our students took part in commemorative assemblies or age appropriate educational sessions throughout the day. In addition some of our staff and students worked together to develop a short tekes (commemorative service) that can be watched viewed below.
Tuesday 21 April was Yom Ha’Shoah and as a school community we commemorated those precious lives lost in the Holocaust and we celebrate the survivors. The Shoah is a challenging part of our Jewish history, and it is incumbent upon us, as a community, to honour its memory and to dignify its victims.
Whilst we were unable to have survivors visit campus and share their stories, in Years 6-12 classes students shared family testimonies and lit Yizkor candles to honour victims.
This week we undertook a three day trial of Digital Bialik, an online delivery of our entire Prep to Year 12 curriculum. The trial was a huge success. Every subject, from Maths to English, from PE to Music, and even our kitchen lessons took place online.
Science was supported by our Laboratory Manager videoing science experiments at home, and even the Informal Team had lunchtime ‘hangs’ with our students.
Kol Hakavod to our inspiring teaching and administration teams who have relished the challenge and supported our children to continue learning.
The NQF (National Quality Framework) introduced a new quality standard in 2012 to improve education and care across long day care, family day care, preschool/kindergarten, and outside school hours care services.
The NQF includes:
• National Law and National Regulations
• National Quality Standard
• Assessment and quality rating process
• National learning frameworks.
Research shows quality education and care early in life leads to better health, education and employment outcomes later in life. The early years are critical for establishing self-esteem, resilience, healthy growth and capacity to learn. Quality education and care shapes every child’s future and lays the foundation for development and learning.
Since 1994, we have been strongly inspired by the Reggio Approach.We have never called ourselves a Reggio Emilia school because that is a school that belongs in Reggio Emilia but Reggio Emilia’s challenge to us came about in two forms. One is a gift and by that I am referring to our increased understanding of the rights and abilities of children, the richness of multiple points of view and the potential of taking action on behalf of our children. The second was a tremendous responsibility once we admitted to what we had seen and understood. We could no longer go back to the idea of the teacher as the transmitter of all knowledge, nor the idea of children working in isolation, but rather as collaborative members of a group. We understood that children express themselves in many ways not only through the language of speech and that the teachers are not the ones asking the questions to which they usually already know the answer.
We have also been strongly influenced in our thinking by the Cultures of Thinking research project, a collaboration between Bialik College and Harvard University. This meant that teachers, teaching children of all ages, were able to connect together based on children’s thinking not on the discipline nor on the age of the children. It came about as a direct response and a complete fit to the children leaving the ELC and entering the primary school at year 2.
The implementation of the Victorian Early Years Learning Framework came after many years of change for us. The building of respectful, reciprocal relationships with each other, with our families, with our children and other professionals is something that is lived every day. Our image of our children means that we have high expectations in their abilities but understand diversity and welcome difference. The Framework has enhanced and enriched our learning together as a staff as we discuss and debate issues. We have worked hard to be open to listening to others and this has resulted in a welcoming ‘open door’ policy towards families and educators from Bialik and beyond with many people coming to visit and to learn from us. We value this reciprocity as we learn much from others’ questions and wonderings, which helps to deepen our thinking and learning.
Our responsibility concerns the quality of education we offer to our children and our families, the quality of our resources and in particular the richness of our approach. We continue to ask hard and deep questions while trying to build answers, challenge our assumptions and evolve in our thinking and actions. Loris Malaguzzi, founder of the Reggio Approach and one of the great pedagogical figures of the 20th century, spoke often of the role of the teacher. He encouraged teachers to embrace their responsibility and often concluded by saying, “the teacher’s task is to preserve, as far as possible, the naturalness of the children’s creative and practical processes, in the conviction that children have the necessary resources for going much further than we might think.” Malaguzzi, 1995.
Education and care services are assessed and rated by their state and territory regulatory authority. In Victoria services are rated by a regulatory body, Australian Children’s Education and Care Quality Authority (ACECQA).
Services are assessed against the 7 quality areas of the National Quality Standard.
These are: Educational program and practice; Children’s health and safety; Physical environment; Staffing arrangements; Relationships with children; Collaborative partnerships with families and communities and Leadership and Governance.
We are in the middle of our assessment and rating process. This is a very important process for us as it recognises what we do well and what we need to do to improve our practice further.
The Bialik School values of Responsibility, Integrity, Perseverance, Empathy and Respect are the values that we always strive to embody. Success for us means, that each one of our educators has a deep understanding of children and how they learn and that they are able to articulate our beliefs, our understandings of our children’s thinking and the approaches to pedagogy that we have developed.