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eNews January 2016

Happy New Year!

Welcome to the first edition of the eNewsletter for 2016. Hopefully your Christmas vacation was well-spent and you are all refreshed and ready for the upcoming year.

With the academic year almost upon us it is timely to consider our professional learning needs. This year we aim to publish a number of educational contributions from our members. As always, the most valuable learning is gained from our colleages at the coalface, so please feel free to share, or indeed to volunteer someone you know who is doing great things. Our first contributor is Jane Bennett, a social worker and author who has developed programs around female adolescence and development. Find her first article below.

The 2nd APCAS will occur in Singapore in September (see below) so submit your PD applications early to ensure you can attend. It promises to be an engaging and enlightening event, so get in early! There is also an opportunity to submit a presentation abstract for consideration.

March is Middle Level Education Week (see below) where we have an opportunity to celebrate our young adolescent students. Let us know how you have engaged with this initiative.

Please enjoy the content in this and every eNews edition published this year. Feedback would be appreciated if there is something in particular you as readers might wish to explore further.

Best wishes for 2016!

Matt Atkinson - Vice President


March is Middle Level Education Week

The Association for Middle Level Education has joined with the National Association of Secondary School Principals, The National Forum to Accelerate Middle-Grades Reform, Adolescent Success, ACT, and Let's Move! Active Schools to declare March the official month to focus on students ages 10 to 15 and celebrate middle level education.

The key messages for the celebration are:

  • The importance of parents being knowledgeable about young adolescents and being actively involved in their lives;
  • The understanding that healthy bodies plus healthy minds equal healthy young adolescents;
  • The realization that the education young adolescents experience during this formative period of life will, in large measure, determine the future for all citizens; and
  • The knowledge that every young adolescent should have the opportunity to pursue his or her dreams and aspirations, and post-secondary education should be a possibility for all

Planning Your Celebration:

The sky's the limit! The way you plan your celebration is only limited by your imagination. Take a look at the ideas and free samples throughout this section. After your next celebration, send us a paragraph, photos, or an article about your school and community activities and we'll post it on our website. Middle Level Education Month is a celebration that should be experienced by all schools and communities around the world!

Click here for more ideas on what you and your school can do to celebrate Middle Level Education.


Cal for Abstracts and Registration now open

Find out more about the conference

Register your team to attend



Submit an abstract

National Close the Gap Day 2016

National Close the Gap Day is being held on Thursday 17th March 2016. Celebrating its 10th Anniversary, it is Australia's largest Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health campaign and provides excellent information for students to learn about national health equality issues. Plus it's linked to the Australian Curriculum and is a great way for teachers to tackle the cross-cutting priority of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander histories and cultures.

Last year, more than 92000 students and teachers from 350 schools took part in National Close the Gap Day activities. Will your school join in to mark the milestone 10th Anniversary this year?

In the past decade there have been some significant improvements, including a strong decline in infant mortality, improved access to vital health services for many people and notable declines in the rates of smoking by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples. Oxfam Australia suggests that as educators, we must continue to work together to ensure Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health equality becomes a reality by 2030 - our students' generation.

And don't forget the Instagram student photo challenge! This annual challenge gives students the chance to creatively explore issues surrounding health equality, and share their vision with their peers around Australia. There are also great prizes to be won! Schools are critical to creating change, so please join in on Thursday March 17th to make it the biggest national day of action yet.

Register your year-level or whole school now at www.oxfam.org.au/ctgschools (Select link below)

For more information, please contact Oxfam Australia's Schools Program Coordinator via: schools@oxfam.org.au (Link below) or call (03) 92899390.


Register     Contact     Forward to a friend


Real girls, real conversations

"In a world where advertising images and myths of the perfect female body abound, how can we encourage conversations with girls that sparkle with understanding, self-acceptance, curiosity, reflection and celebration?"

In the first of a series of articles, social worker, author and program developer, Jane Bennett, discusses the background to her program and conversation cards. For more information, and to continue reading the article, click the links below.


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Becoming an inclusive teacher

"New ways of thinking are required in teacher education to promote beginning teachers as change agents in education."

The authors of this article further argue that beginning teachers need to be prepared to challenge the ideological influences that operate in schools.

They conclude by arguing that the voice of beginning teachers is essential for the ongoing movement towards the creation of just, inclusive schools.


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It takes a village... to build a village

Do you know what your students are truly capable of when given an opportunity? How far outside the box could you take them? how far outside the box could they take themselves....?

Some readers suggest that this achievement should be no surprise, given the popularity of games such as Minecraft. This article demonstrates the creativity of adolescent students and begs the question...why not?

Take the time to visit the Adolescent Success Forum to share your "Outside the box" creativity experiences with your students. How important do you think such opportunities are for our adolescents?


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Why STEM's future rests in the hands of 12-year-old girls

Top-performing girls continue to lag behind top-performing boys in maths and science, according to a recent OECD survey targeting 15-year-old students. Anxiety and lack of self-confidence in these areas may result in lower performances in school and could explain the low representation of females in STEM fields, and in fact, could be traced back to the 9-12 years age bracket. 

How then do we encourage our girls to develop their interest in STEM?



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Request for photos for the next journal

We would love to showcase your school/students in the June publication of the Australian Journal of Middle Schooling.

If you have any photos of your school, students or events which you'd like to submit please click here for the copyright release form.

This is a great way to showcase your school and students.

Many thanks for your support; it's shaping up to be a great publication!

Please email our executive officer Angela White at angela@adolescentsuccess.org.au.


Exploring Teens Magazine

The latest Exploring Teens magazine has been published and, again, it is filled with excellent content for parents and teachers.  Subscription is free.

Adolescent Success is pleased to partner with this incredibly valuable publication.

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Quick Links

How to attribute Creative Commons photos

Use MINECRAFT to teach maths

Visible and invisible learning and teaching



Inclusion elevates all! ~ Elaine Hall


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