Santa Sophia Catholic College Newsletter

February Newsletter - Term 1, Week 4 2020

Welcome Address by Mark De Vries

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Kindergarten 2020

Wow! What an exciting start to Kindergarten... 

Read all about it on our website here:

Kindy - Term 1

Year 1 - Term 1

Year 1 have had a wonderful start to Term 1! Read all about it here:

Year 1, Term 1

Year 7, 2020

by Mr Adams

Santa Sophia Catholic College’s Year 7 class of 2020 has started the year with flying colours! Many staff and students alike have noted how they have hit the ground running, equally confident and curious entering their first year of high school. The first few weeks of school have been a whirlwind of activity for the newest students of the Santa Sophia community - starting with a welcome assembly with Mr De Vries challenging each and every one of them to embrace and immerse themselves in all that the school has to offer. A challenge many have taken on with enthusiasm.

This has seen the students experience a week of orientation - getting to know each other, the school and its processes and values, and a focus on equipping them with the skills necessary for success, in particular lessons around PBS4L such as goal setting and having a growth mindset.

Since then students have jumped head first into their first classes of high school and have completed various activities before setting off on their rigorous inquiry learning through projects.

Students have written narratives in English, completed a historical terms alphabet in History, and completed a game of human bingo and even a Bible verse scavenger hunt in Religion! (See pictures).

It’s now reached the exciting point of the term where students are experiencing their ‘entry events’ that launch their projects in each subject. Students will have an exciting term ahead full of learning how to uncover and judge a historical source/artefact, discovering the power of storytelling and creating stories to share their own story, creating a digital portfolio all about the power of positive relationships and wellbeing, and even using a laser cutter to create a final product! Year 7 definitely have a lot to look forward to this term.

123 Magic & Emotion Coaching Parent Course

Learn to manage difficult behavior in children 2-12 years old

Santa Sophia Catholic College and Our Lady of the Angels Primary together with The Catholic Education Diocese of Parramatta are pleased to offer parents and carers in our Diocese, the 1 2 3 Magic and Emotion Coaching course. This course will take the place of our PEN Event for Term 1 and we encourage our Primary parents to be involved


The course is 3 sessions and will be run on the following dates:

Session 1                  

6:30 – 8:30pm        

Tuesday 10th March, 2020

Session 2                  

6:30 – 8:30pm        

Tuesday 17th March, 2020

Session 3                  

6:30 – 8:30pm        

Tuesday 24th March, 2020



  •               How to discipline without arguing, yelling or smacking
  •               How to manage behaviour
  •               How to handle challenging and testing behaviours
  •               Choosing your strategy, the three choices              
  •               Using emotion coaching to encourage good behaviour
  •               7 tactics for encouraging good behaviour


Course Facilitators: Lynne Wainwright and Anoushka Houseman

Cost of the Parent Workbook is $10 which can be paid in cash on the night

This actual course will be run free of charge to participants.

Register online here:

Opening School Mass

We were delighted to see so many of our parents and grandparents attend our Opening School Mass for 2020. This was a valuable opportunity to come together to pray to our Lord for His blessing for the coming school year. We also had the opportunity to give our new Secondary students their Bibles.

We hope to see many of you at our Ash Wednesday Mass on Wednesday 26th February at 1pm at our Schofields Campus. 

Student News

Executive Director Summer Reading Challenge

Congratulations to Vito and Sairam who both achieved runners up prizes in the Executive Director's Summer Reading Challenge. 

Jack Newton Golf Tournament

We wish good luck to our year 7 student Toby Farrar who will be competing in the Jack Newton Golf Tournament this April!

Swimming Carnival

Our Secondary Swimming Carnival is being held on Thursday 27th February, 8:30am - 2:30pm.

Students are to come to school as normal and will be transported via bus to Riverstone Swimming Centre, located at the corner of Market Street and Garfield Road, Riverstone. Students will be travel via bus back to school at the end of the day. 

Parents are more than welcome to attend. 

Tools to Manage Teenage Anxiety

As part of our membership to Parenting Ideas we are pleased to offer the below article resource to you written by Michael Grose on Tools to Manage Teenage Anxiety

Anxiety is the most common mental health issue facing young people today. It impacts significantly on their happiness, wellbeing and learning. Untreated anxiety in young people is likely to continue to pose a problem in adulthood.

It’s normal for a young person to feel anxious from time to time. Here are some tools to help them manage their anxiousness.


Young people often tell themselves stories about how they appear to others, how they will do in an assignment, test or learning activity and how they will meet with challenging events. Their stories can be helpful – “I know I can do this!” or unhelpful – “I’m hopeless at sticking with projects.”

To reduce the impact of unhelpful thinking on their emotional state, teach them to distance themselves from their unhelpful stories and self-talk through the skill of defusion, or thought-distancing. Here are some examples you can use:

  • “I feel awful about this exam.” Ask “Is that helpful thinking?
  • “Everyone wiil find this test hard.” Ask, “Is that a thought or a fact?”
  • “I’m hopeless at school.” Add “I had a thought that I’m hopeless at school.” – it places them one step away from the thought


When someone is anxious, they are often worried about a future event. Their restless mind needs to take a rest from future thinking, ruminating and worrying.

Settling back into the present gives them a chance to relax and calm down. The practice of mindfulness, even if just for a few seconds, is a wonderful way to let go of their worries. Encourage your young person to practise mindfulness regularly and at different times of the day.

Here’s some mindfulness tools that can help them to bring their focus back to the present. Ask them to count out loud on their fingers:

  • Five things they can see
  • Four things they can hear
  • Three things they can feel (such as their feet in their shoes)
  • Two things are grateful for
  • One person they love

Deep breathing

When someone is stressed, their whole physiology is on edge. When they are anxious their breathing becomes shallow.

Deep breathing activates their relaxation response to relieve stress. As a result, the heart rate decreases, muscles relax, pupils constrict and the stomach starts to do its job that was put on hold when anxiety struck. Encourage your young person to breathe in this way:

  • Say to them “Come on, let’s take three deep breathes together”
  • Encourage them to breathe into their belly to get control over their body and steady their mind


Exercise releases chemicals called endorphins that increase your young person’s feelings of wellbeing. It also relieves the muscle tension that builds up over a day of working, worrying and ruminating. There are many ways to get more movement into your young person’s life including:

  • Engaging in regular sports
  • Walking to school and to other activities
  • Taking regular movement breaks from homework
  • Joining you in a morning walk

When anxiety comes a problem

Anxiety becomes a problem when it impacts on your young person’s quality of life and prevents them from participating in everyday activities such as school, interests and social events. If this happens your young person may need professional support. Their school, your local general practitioner and the relevant department at your local council can assist.

Free Webinar: "Future-proofing your child"

Another FREE webinar thanks to our membership with Parenting Ideas:

Click HERE:

Use discount code: FUTURE to access this webinar from Parenting Ideas for FREE (normally $37) as part of our Parenting Ideas membership.

This century is characterised by disruptive change that is turning our world upside down.  Jobs aren’t just changing, whole industries are ceasing to exist. The scripts for success are being rewritten on a daily basis in our families, at work and in life. In this webinar Nikki Bush - award winning speaker and author - teaches parents what to expect and how to support their kids to thrive in a future world of work.  

Key learning and discussion points include:

• Key trends that are changing the world

• Frameworks for future-proofing children

• Highlighting the X-factors for success

• Explaining the role of school in a changing world

• Helping parents to set realistic and relevant parenting goals


Dates for your Diary

Wednesday 26th February

- Ash Wednesday Mass, 1pm at Schofields.

- NSW All Schools Triathlon (Individual)-Penrith

Thursday 27th February

- Swimming Carnival (Secondary only) at Riverstone Swimming Centre.

Monday 2nd March

- Year 1 Excursion to the Sydney Observatory.

Tuesday 3rd March

- PDSSSC Touch Football Gala Day-Werrington

Wednesday 4th March

- Secondary Open Day (4-7pm) at Schofields campus. 

Friday 6th March

- PDSSSC Swimming Carnival

Tuesday 10th March

- PDSSSC U/15s Rugby League Selection Day

Wednesday 11th March

- Primary Open Day (4-6pm) at OLA Kellyville campus 

Thursday 19th March

- Year 7 Camp

Friday 20th March

- Year 7 Camp

-PDSSSC Swimming Carnival

Thursday 26th March

- Year 9 excursion to the War Memorial in Canberra

Friday 3rd April

- NSWCCC Swimming Carnival

Wednesday 8th April

- Last day of Term