Our Year 12 students thoroughly enjoyed a two night three day Retreat staying at Nunyara last week. The Retreat is designed to forge even closer connections within the group, the help gear them for the year ahead and to simply have some spirited fun. The Induction Night with parents kicked started the program, Carla Centofanti had them practising ballroom dances in readiness for their formal, Old scholars from the Class of 2016 shared their success tips and the Amazing Race involved a number of team challenges at various locations in Mitcham and Blackwood. Activities with their Year 7 buddies, moving services from Chaplain Paula and Fr Steve (Lauren Goodwin’s memorial fountain unveiling), and parent letters demanded that the students reflect deeply on their lives and the importance of family, friendships and partnerships. Designing and making Formal costumes from newspapers and the yoga, swimming and fitness sessions added to an action-packed experience.
“Retreat was an opportunity were we as an already close year level got to bond further and understand how we could push ourselves and our peers to the best of our ability for the coming year.” Jed Perri.
“Retreat 2017 was an amazing experience, and was one to remember. Everyone had the chance to bond, whether it was through learning dances, or running around blackwood and Mitcham on the amazing race! It was such a fun experience that everyone enjoyed and I think that our year level really got the chance to become closer and prepare for the big year ahead. Along with the talks from teachers and old scholars, I think that everyone feels better about how this year will go and how we will approach it! Overall year 12 retreat will be one of the main highlights of year 12 for us and we will not forget it.” Annabel Renfrey
“I feel retreat brought us closer together as a year 12 cohort. I became closer with people I have not previously had much interaction with and was additionally able to spend time with all my friends, creating happy memories of which will hold us in good stead for what together will be a tough yet rewarding year.” Tom Murphy
“Retreat was an incredible experience, hands down. In the space of two days the session filled me with enough inspiration and motivation to last the year, and then some. Initially I feared that the back to back activities would hinder the experience but it definitely made it. You would reminisce to an activity you had done the following day but it felt a week ago. The discussions from the old scholars, the letter from our parents and countless conversations from our teachers really made us all feel that the school, our peers and our parents are all in this journey with us and we are all trying to achieve a common goal. When you release this, the road ahead doesn’t seem too daunting anymore and I think that this is what retreat really does best. I’m very thankful for St. John’s for providing my year level with such an opportunity.” Hannah Morgan
“Overall I had an amazing time at Retreat. Everyone socialised with people from different groups and had a laugh with people whom they didn’t know well. But, as easy as it was to laugh with each other at our clumsy dancing, when it came to it, there was also a lot of shared respect throughout the year level. Sitting in the language gardens there was an overwhelming sense of support and understanding and I think this made the group closer just as much as the hilarious amazing race activities and creative clothing endeavours.” Alice Warren
The unveiling of Lauren Goodwin’s memorial water feature in the Asian Fusion Garden was a special moment for her classmates and Lauren’s family, Susie, Brad and Georgia. This area of the garden has been built for all in our school community to visit, reflect and remember. Special thanks to Amanda Carbery for her work in the design and construction of the fountain, to the Class of 2016 who funded the project, to John Ovenden for his time and expertise and to the Property Services team who also assisted.
Head of Senior School