Junior School Wednesday, 28 June 2023

Regional Academic Day

Congratulations to the students in Year 5 who represented Aquinas Junior School at the Regional Academic Day a few weeks ago. It was a fantastic achievement for the boys to participate in various academic challenges including robotic coding, art and poetry, english puzzles, code breaking, STEM design and a general knowledge quiz. Our young students stepped up in the absence of our Year 6’s who were on camp and finished 5th which was a great achievement.

Well done: Grayson Ahrens, Julian Arevalo Ballestas, Hunter Forzatti, Sebastian Jennings, Jamie Lim, Lennox Marston, Samuel Stocco, Ian Thompson.

Ron Fris
Year 5 Teacher

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Junior School Friday, 23 June 2023

2023 JPSSA Cross Country Carnival

The JPSSA Cross Country Carnival was held in cold conditions on Thursday 22nd of June at Hale School. The JPSSA Cross Country Carnival was the curtain raiser before the PSA Middle and Senior School Cross Country. This provided the Junior School boys with a unique experience to watch older students compete.

The Year 3 students were involved in a participation event which ran in 2 waves. This was a great opportunity for these students to experience an interschool carnival before transitioning into year 4.

A special thanks to Mr Fris, Ms Sweetman and Senior School students Daniel Delic and Declan Somers for providing extra supervision and guidance at Junior School Running Club on Friday mornings, preparing students for the Interschool event.

Congratulations and well done to all boys who represented the College who displayed great sportsmanship and effort on the day.

Distances covered were:

  • Year 3 students ran 1.2kms
  • Year 4 students ran 1.5kms
  • Year 5 students ran 2.0kms
  • Year 6 students ran 2.5kms

The Aquinas College results were as follows:

  • Year 4 – 7th place
  • Year 5 – 4th place
  • Year 6 – 4th place
  • Overall – 5th place

Our best placed runners overall were:

  • Hudson Hayes – 4th place in the Year 5 race.
  • Jordan Trueman – 8th place in the Year 5 race.
  • Grayson Ahrens – 11th place in the Year 5 race.

Special mentions go to Lucah Rolfe and Beau Smith for placing 1st and 2nd in wave 1 and to Lewis Hales who placed 1st in wave 2 of the year 3 participation event.

Thank you to all staff members and parents for all your help and support on the day.

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Junior School Monday, 29 May 2023

Junior School House Cross Country Carnival

The Junior School House Cross Country Carnival was held on Tuesday, 23rd May on McMahon Oval. All students from Kindergarten to Year 6 competed, with race distances ranging from 250m to 2.5km. The conditions were perfect for all competitors. Additionally, it was great to see all the students supporting each other, especially those at the tail end of the races.

Final Points

1. Redmond 114.50 points

2. Egan 132.42 points

3. Quinlan 137.82 points

4. Clune 140.56 points

Congratulations to Redmond for being the Champion House and to the following boys who were named Champions and Runners-up for their year level.

Kindergarten & Pre-Primary (250m)
Champion: Adrian Kavoi (Quinlan)

Runner-up: Julian Reyes Fabrega (Quinlan)

Year 1 (500m)
Champion: Archibald Pohla (Quinlan)

Runner-up: Darcy Smith (Quinlan) & Jack Rumenos (Clune)

Year 2 (750m)
Champion: Bradley Vinac (Egan)

Runner-up: Alfred Swingler (Redmond)

Year 3 (1000m)
Champion: Lucah Rolfe (Clune) – RECORD – 3:59.47

Runner-up: James Groombridge (Egan)

Year 4 (1500m)
Champion: Louis Pillay (Quinlan) – RECORD – 6:20.74

Runner-up: Ashton Smales (Egan)

Year 5 (2000m)
Champion: Maxime Blackadder (Egan) – RECORD – 7:25.56

Runner-up: Hudson Hayes (Clune)

Year 6 (2500m)
Champion: Tyson Blakey (Clune) – RECORD – 9:00.88

Runner-up: Duke Danby (Egan)

Congratulations and well done to all boys who represented their House and gave it their all on the day. The boys selected in the JPSSA Interschool Cross Country team will be competing at Hale School on Thursday, 22nd June and we wish those boys the best of luck.

Lastly, thank you to all staff members, ground staff, Holy Ground Coffee, ICT staff, and Middle School volunteers for all your help and support on the day.

Mr. Clay Murray
Junior Sport Coordinator

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Junior School Monday, 29 May 2023

From the Page to the Stage

‘Seussical Jr’ Comes to Life at Aquinas College

“Imagine a sky, imagine bright blue. It’s the Jungle of Nool near the river Walloo. Now imagine an Elephant lumbering through. It’s Horton, yes Horton, and Horton hears a Who.” These were the words of the Cat in the Hat that brought audiences into the quirky and colourful world of Dr Seuss for the 2023 Junior School Production of ‘Seussical Jr’. Over four days in Term 2, over 50 boys from Year 3-6 acted, danced and sung their way through the bright and fun musical which combined many of the beloved stories and characters of Dr Seuss into a truly memorable musical experience.

The process of bringing ‘Seussical Jr’ to the stage began in the first weeks of Term 1. After the return of the Junior School Production in 2021 and the huge success of ‘The Lion King’ (2021) and Shrek (2022), a large number of boys enrolled to participate in the production this year. After auditions took place in Week 1, the process of blocking scenes, learning songs and mapping out choreography begun. The music itself was a great challenge for the boys with plenty of wordy lyrics, tricky rhythms and syncopation. However, the boys rose to the challenge and by mid-term, the characters and songs were starting to come to life.

The support of the Aquinas College staff and parent community was absolutely outstanding. Throughout Term 1, a small army of parent helpers gave up their evenings and weekends to paint, sew and glue, creating a dazzling array of Seussian style costumes and props for the show. Special thanks go to costume and prop coordinators Laura Alvin and Polly Chan who were instrumental in leading the parent team and creating some truly special aspects of the production.

The Aquinas Arts Staff team were truly a force to be reckoned as always. Musical Director Chris McMillan lead the way, dedicating an incredible amount of time to work with the boys on perfecting the songs as well as directing the talented band which included piano tutor Cate Carboon and percussion tutor Dan Harrison.

Assistant Director Emma Leopardi proved instrumental throughout the rehearsal and performance process with her artistic eye and rapport with the boys shining through.

Choreographers Chanel Turner, Travis Leggett and Hannah Sibbald brought the moves, working in Dance Club and Production rehearsals to teach the boys about safe dance practice and bringing the show to life with some highly creative movement.

Mark McAndrew worked tirelessly to ensure this ‘sung through’ show sounded impeccable, working with Year 9 student Harrison Agnihotri to balance not only the band but multiple headset microphones and teaching the boys about microphone technique.

Lachlan Bowyer, with the assistance of Year 12 student Dillon Thiel ensured the show looked incredible with a dazzling Seussian set design, with the talents and support of Lucy Hughes, Bina Butcher and John Van Dyk, as well as a vibrant lighting design.

The promotion of the show was integral to the full houses. Thanks to Sheree Kendall for her creative photography and design work, as well as Year 12 Media Captain David Scott for his behind the scenes photography.

Finally, the show could not have happened without the support and efforts of Isa Main in ticketing, programs and administration, and Rebecca Watson, working tirelessly on Front of House for each show.

Just as important as the action onstage was the amazing efforts backstage. Led by Nicole Monzu and Arts and Culture Captain Rory Watson, an incredible team of Middle and Senior Students and Staff were a well-oiled machine, keeping things running smoothly behind the scenes.

Production week was an absolute treat, with a buzz in the air, Seussical posters lining the balconies and a sold out season ahead. The boys were well rehearsed and excited to bring the words of Seuss from the page to the stage. From Whos to Jungle Citizens, Fish to Circus Animals, all these zany characters were on display to delight audiences. The story followed Horton the Elephant, who, after discovering the tiny world of Whoville inside a speck of dust, is ridiculed by the inhabitants of the Jungle and put on trial for insanity. The moral of the story was beautiful, with always standing up for your beliefs the key message and Horton’ mantra “a person’s a person, no matter how small” proving inspirational.

This year, with Aquinas College joining the Independent Theatre Association, we had the opportunity to have the show adjudicated. The production was described as “a welcome oasis from the stresses of the world”, “a feast for the eyes” and a “memorable experience” by adjudicators.

A big congratulations and thank you to all the students, staff, parents and community members that made ‘Seussical Jr’ possible. We can’t wait to see what 2024 brings for the Junior School Production.

Until then, just remember to cherish “the thinks you can think when you think about Seuss!”

Chris McRae
Production Director and Junior School Music Coordinator

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Junior School Thursday, 11 May 2023

Da Vinci Decathlon

On Monday 8 May, sixteen selected students from Year 5 and 6 attended the Da Vinci Decathlon held at the University of WA. The two teams of eight showed outstanding perseverance, teamwork and patience with one another to complete the 10 rounds of questions throughout the day. A big congratulations to Team 1 who placed third in the ‘Code Breaking’ section and second in the ‘Cartography’ category.

Congratulations to the following students for your commitment and enthusiasm on the day and thank you for representing the College with distinction.

Team 1

  1. Owen Imms
  2. Myles Paton
  3. Arman Malyniak
  4. Aramis Landrigan
  5. James Hawke
  6. Declan D'Costa
  7. Aarav Sharma
  8. Ethan Dover

Team 2

  1. Julian Arevalo- Ballestas
  2. Grayson Ahrens
  3. Hunter Forzatti
  4. Ian Thomson
  5. Hunter Neesham
  6. Aiden Zaninovich
  7. Oscar Criddle
  8. Parker Brown

James McPherson

Assistant Principal 4-6

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Junior School Tuesday, 04 Apr 2023

Junior School House Athletics Carnival 2023

The Junior School House Athletics Carnival was held on Monday 3rd of April on Memorial and Lynch Ovals. Fantastic weather was on display which saw many great achievements on the field and on the track.

The boys competed with great spirit, enthusiasm, and sportsmanship. Two houses were extremely close all day, ending with a 12-point difference in favour of Redmond House as victors, claiming the David Jones Trophy narrowly ahead of Egan House.

Congratulations to the following boys who were named Champions and Runners-up for their year level.

Year 3
 Champion: James Groombridge - 23 points

Runner-up: Yash Chowdhury - 17 points

Year 4 
Champion: Angus Milne - 43 points

Runner-up: Lucas Johnson - 24 points

Year 5
 Champion: Maxime Blackadder - 50 points

Runner-up: Grayson Ahrens - 40 points

Year 6
 Champion: Luca Zoiti - 42 points

Runner-up: Lincoln Mathanda - 23 points

Final Points

1. Redmond - 981

2. Egan - 969

3. Quinlan - 841

4. Clune - 768

Thank you to all staff members, ground staff, ICT staff, parent volunteers and Middle School volunteers for all your help and support on the day.

Clay Murray
Junior Sports Coordinator

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Junior School Thursday, 30 Mar 2023

The Resilience Project

This year the Junior School have begun using The Resilience Project to further develop our Character Education program. The Resilience Project is a company based out of Melbourne which aims to teach positive mental health strategies and build our capacity to deal with adversity.

The Resilience Project was developed by a man named Hugh Van Cuylenburg for two main reasons;

- His sister suffered from a mental illness.
- He visited India and met a boy call Stanzin.

Whilst he was in India, he learnt that Stanzin was one of the happiest people he had ever met. Because of this, Hugh has based his program on three key principles which are designed to build resilience and make us happy.

Gratitude – Paying attention to what we have and not what we don’t have.
One activity we did was the ‘DIS’ challenge. Whenever we were doing something we loved like playing sport or an instrument or having dinner with our family, we would stop and say DIS. The idea is that we are saying "how good is this” and being grateful for what we have in our lives.

Empathy – Understand how others feel.
During our focus on Empathy were asked to perform random acts of kindness around the school and in our home. We learnt that we felt happier when we were able to help others.

Mindfulness – Being calm and present in any given moment.
An activity we did, which was challenging, was sitting still for 2 minutes, and focusing on what we could hear. By doing this it made us be present and calm as we are trying hard to not think of anything else.

We like the program because it has allowed us to be more grateful for what we have. We also like the lessons because it is a chance to relax during the school day and not feel overwhelmed with our school work or lives.

Lincoln and Max
Junior School Students

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Junior School Tuesday, 28 Mar 2023


Working on mindfulness gives us opportunities to develop our ability to pay attention to the present moment and our thoughts. Practising mindfulness daily can help us stay focused on set tasks and reduce stress and anxiety.

Boys in Pre Primary – Year 3 learnt about breathing techniques with Mrs. Monzu. They also completed some mindfulness colouring activities. Mrs. Monzu read the book “My Strong Mind” which focuses on techniques to develop their own strong mind. In Years 4-6, the boys listened to the book “Be Your Own Man” which introduces the concept of self-care. We shared why we believe self-care is important and the relationship between self-care and mindfulness.

Fun Fact…. We spend 49% of our waking hours thinking about something other than what we’re doing!

Regular mindfulness practice can improve our:

  • Immune system.
  • Energy levels.
  • Sleep quality.
  • Awareness.
  • Memory.
  • Productivity.

Why don’t you give it a go? Find a mindfulness activity that suits you and that you enjoy, everyone is different. Some suggestions are; listening to music, exercise, colouring, puzzles, meditation and yoga.

James McPherson
Assistant Principal 4-6

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Junior School Thursday, 23 Mar 2023

Education Perfect Languages

Education Perfect Languages – Global Championships

Last week, Aquinas College participated in the Education Perfect Languages’ Global Championships.

Students had a week to obtain as many points for correct answers (for the school and individuals) as possible. There were 2,532 schools competing globally in this competition.

Our superb effort saw us achieve:

  • Second place overall for Italian – an amazing achievement;
  • First for Italian in Australian for schools with 501-1000 students category;
  • Sixth overall in Western Australia;
  • 31st overall in Australia; and
  • 46th overall globally.

Congratulations to Kale Thong (Year 7) who received an Emerald Certificate for reaching the highest level with over 5,000 points. Congratulations also to the following boys who received Gold Certificates: Brando Lomma (Year 7), Christian Perkis (Year 8), Roman Mondello (Year 6) and Thomas Van Dyk (Year 6)

We also had many boys receive Silver and Bronze certificates. Bravissimi ragazzi!

Ms Nicole Aquilia
Coordinator of Languages

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