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COLLEGIAN The MAGAZINE of Brisbane Boys’ College

July 2016

BOYS BUILDING; BUILDING BOYS How hobbies help build mindfulness and emotional intelligence Also inside:













A few words from the Headmaster Graeme McDonald




Boys campaign to raise awareness of the issue of domestic violence


Our Place

BBC boarders enjoy a new sense of space and place

13 17 Subject of endurance

Maths students blitz the competition at the Metropolitan West Mathematics Challenge

15 AgConnect

Primary students from across Brisbane enjoy an interactive food education experience


World view

Boys' education feature Understanding to be understood


Boys do write

An in-depth look at literacy and boys' education


From the coalface BBC staff share their insights into the very human side of education

Find out more about BBC's Amnesty International Club


37 Published by Brisbane Boys’ College CRICOS Code 00491J Kensington Terrace, Toowong, Queensland 4066 T 07 3309 3571 F 07 3371 2679 W A SCHOOL OF THE PRESBYTERIAN AND METHODIST SCHOOLS ASSOCIATION

Editor and Art Director Adele Graves Graphic Design Tracey Maree Contributors Nicole de Vries, Chris Hartley, Jarrod Turner, Kelly Edwards, Helen Jackson Photography Michael Marston Cover Lachlan Pillig. Photo by Michael Marston

The way of the artist

A prelude to the upcoming Prep to Year 12 Art Show


Don't stop the music

At BBC the music never stops, and we wouldn't have it any other way


King and Country

Theatre students bring the tragedy of Macbeth - the original political thriller – to life in a story of ambition, love and witchcraft COLLEGIAN JULY 2016


48 76 Insight

The experts offer advice to navigate through the journey of parenthood


Nevill Montague Little, a special find for the Archives

70 78 Snapshots

Scenes from the Spring Fashion Parade and other events in the College calendar

Be seen, the less seen

Capturing the energy and enthusiasm of boys outside of the classroom



Making a splash Featuring BBC's Aquatics program


With heart and perseverance A wrap-up of the rowing season in its centenary year

44 Captured

Sporting moments through the lens


54 64 Strengthening the tie

A message from OCA President Chris Hartley


A man for all sporting seasons

A look into the amazing life and career of BBC Old Boy John Wylie

Katahanas Kickstarter

We interview BBC Young Old Boy and Microsoft Innovation Centre Program Manager, Jono Katahanas

68 Melbourne Dinner

BBC Old Boys reunite for a special function in Victoria

From the Editor ADELE GRAVES

This edition is all about connection. That’s what fuels this place; what drives learning. Brene Brown, a best selling author, thought leader and vulnerability

members of staff to be involved did any of them believe this to be the

researcher believes that, “Vulnerability is the birthplace of innovation,

case? No. Were they keen on being put in the spotlight? Not really. Were

creativity and change” and without it connection cannot occur. She

they courageous enough to share a part of themselves and to be seen?

puts forward a compelling case for us all to “lean into the discomfort” to

Absolutely. It’s what they do every day, almost intrinsically and without

cultivate connection and to live an authentic and courageous life.

second thought.

These themes are brought to the fore in our feature for this edition,

For me, acts of courage are a daily event here at BBC. Whether it’s

which focuses on boys’ education and what this looks like at BBC.

the boys from OneQuarter continuing in their quest to raise awareness

As we explore the very human side of education, we share insights

around the issue of domestic violence - knowing their voice can help

from educator and parenting advocate Clark Wight, who delivered a

shape the national conversation we just have to have; students stepping

presentation as part of BBC’s professional development day earlier this

outside of their comfort zone to expand their minds and shape their

year. A number of our staff also speak about their experiences at the

future, or a simple smile or subtle exchange which says, “I value you”,

coalface, moving beyond “I love my job” and “I enjoy teaching” to reveal

once you know where to look, it becomes clear that these acts of

perspectives which are real, honest, uplifting. These are the stories less

courage, and acts of learning are in fact everywhere.

told and that’s what makes them special. When approaching these


HEADLINES Graeme McDonald, Headmaster

A New School of Thought When education receives significant coverage in the media and particularly in the course of an election, questions are often raised as to the direction in which we should be heading; literacy, numeracy and funding are all frequent themes, which at various points in time, appear to dominate the national agenda. However, the real question we should be asking is what do we really

do not describe who we are”. We would do better to teach students

want from our education system and where do we want to be in five

to “know themselves and become strong in themselves (which will be)

years time? If our most important KPI is to improve our PISA score

much more important in the long run”.

or nationally our NAPLAN scores, then these goals are achievable,

Schooling is above all relationship-based and it is the interaction

but there is a real danger that other important elements of our current

between teacher and student with the powerful support of parents,

offerings could be lost in this quest. Where for example, is the place of

which assures the greatest long-term gains. We need to focus on

The Arts, Foreign Languages, Health and Physical Education, Robotics,

students and their individual learning needs, not just tests and we must

Outdoor Education and a rich co-curricular experience in the pursuit

try to engender real enjoyment in the learning process. Such a balanced

of a single test goal. In education, it is time for us to critically examine

approach will help foster real creativity and imagination, the tools which

our concept of success. Above all, we want our sons and daughters to

will be required by the real thinkers and problem solvers of the future.

really love learning.

This philosophy which is the focus we have established at BBC, in ‘A

Lucy Clark in her recent book, Beautiful Failures, suggests that

New School of Thought’, creates not only well-rounded young men with

we have “too much testing, too much competition and too much

a real belief in the importance of community and having a strong set of

comparison between kids”, and I believe she is correct, even though all

values for life, but it also enables all boys to achieve personal excellence,

of these things have an important place in preparing students for the

which is, of course, reflected in their improved test results.

challenges that lie ahead. However, as she correctly observes “grades


BBC NEWS 8 OneQuarter

Raising awareness of domestic violence

9 Our place

Stage one and two of the Boarding House redevoplement completed

13 Subject of endurance Success at the Metropolotian West Mathematics Challenge

14 Boys building; building boys BBC's Hobby House reinvented


Understanding to be understood

SPECIAL FEATURE What boys' education looks like at BBC




complexity of the issue. After researching extensively, they’ve gained an

to develop OneQuarter, a social enterprise focused on raising awareness

understanding of the challenges which lie ahead – decreased funding,

around the issue of domestic violence among a critical audience –

band aid solutions, and a lack of national and directed conversation,

young men.

despite the efforts of campaigners such as Governor General Quentin

Last year Spencer Hayward, Zach Hayward and Dhruv Goel participated in a workshop run by IMPACT Social Enterprise, a non-profit based at the University of Queensland whose aim is to support and empower young people to create solutions for some of society’s most challenging and complex issues.

Bryce and the inspirational Rosie Battie. “Recent documentaries, like the ABC’s Hitting Home, demonstrates the depth of the problem,” said Spencer. “Providing regular donations to a refuge will have the largest and most efficient direct impact on the problem of domestic violence in terms of

The workshop imparted some valuable lessons, with the group

monetary support. However, as Taylor Swift once put it, ‘band aids don’t

exploring how they can make a sustainable difference through business,

fix bullet holes’. Unfortunately, shelters whilst critically important, are

and for these three boys sparked within them a motivation to invest

indeed only a surface response to an endemic social problem,” he said.

further in their idea and to bring a vision to life. It’s a journey which has taken time, but one which is beginning to gain momentum with the boys engaging fellow student, Liam Pike to design a logo for the purposes of selling t-shirts, whilst they sought potential donation recipients.

“Domestic violence is a unique problem. It is not confined to the disadvantaged nor can it be written off as a few troubled individuals. It permeates all of our society, in every social class and group.” The boys are incredibly humble, quietly yet clearly spoken and at times appear largely unaware of just how amazing their vision is. They

“We decided to use the t-shirts as a vehicle for raising money. We

have endeavoured to approach the task of setting up their social

asked one of our mates to design a logo which would resonate with the

enterprise independently, under the watchful eye of Sustainability Officer,

cause but also one which boys would be comfortable wearing,” said

Dominic Picaun, who is keen to see them realise their vision.


“We’ve recently just provided a $500 donation to Friends With Dignity.

“We didn’t want to alienate people or make them feel like a walking

We realise it’s not much, but we wanted to legitimise the work we are

billboard, but more be proud to wear the shirt and to use it as a way to

doing in the hope that this will enable us to tell a much stronger story

start an important conversation.”

and as a result help people to connect with what we’re trying to achieve

It’s taken a while to get things off the ground but the boys have remained resolute in their endeavour, recognising the importance of focusing their attention on the next generation of young men.

We have to raise awareness amongst this group. The best and clearly the most effective way in which we can end domestic violence is by ensuring that it does not occur in the next generation,” said Zach. And the boys are by no means disillusioned as to the enormity and

so we can continue with our efforts," said Dhruv. The connection with the charity, came about through BBC Art Teacher, Kim Murray who was aware of BBC parent, Julia McKenna’s role as a volunteer and ambassador for the not-for-profit. Regardless of how much they’ve raised or just how far they will go, when you look to statistics and find that domestic violence is more than 100 times more likely than terrorism, and two women will be killed on average every week this year, you can see why the work these boys are doing is just so important. If you’d like to support the boys the t-shirts are now available from College Shop. You can also find out more via their Facebook page


OUR PLACE BBC Boarders are enjoying a new sense of space and place as their precinct continues to be transformed. What many may not know is that Matthew is

continues to evoke in our boys memories of

holidays, boarders returned from across the

Earlier this year, following the school

also an extremely accomplished athlete, having

friendship and experiences which will enrich

country and all corners of the globe to find

represented Australia in the field of Athletics,

and provide them with the confidence and

stages one and two of the redevelopment

winning a silver medal for the Decathlon

capability to change the world.

project completed, including four new

at the 2002 Manchester Commonwealth

dorm spaces, four new living areas and two

Games, not to mention being invited to lunch

not only connecting with the boys, but with

bathroom facilities.

with Her Majesty the Queen, the Duke of

their families. When a family sends their son

“What I’m enjoying most about the role is

The project was made possible thanks to

Edinburgh and Cathy Freeman on behalf of the

to boarding school there is always the thought

the fundraising efforts of the BBC Foundation,

Australian Team - experiences which have only

of, ‘Will he be ok?’ As a parent myself, I know

with more than $800,000 raised to date for the

strengthened his career in education.

how this can have a real impact upon a family

school’s ‘Our Boarding Future’ project. With the project focused on creating a

“These experiences have enabled me to

that lives apart from their son. So establishing

fully appreciate the importance of attention to

relationships with everyone within our

strong sense of place and a Foundation keen

detail, an unparalleled work ethic and the value

community is incredibly important to me.

to support a connected community, the next

of team work. It’s these qualities that we also

stage of the redevelopment - set to commence

seek to instill in our boarders,” said Matthew.

in December this year - will see an additional dorm wing refurbished. And whilst boarders are enjoying their new home, for recently appointed Director of Boarding, Matthew McEwen, ultimately it’s the relationships that exist between the boys and staff that make boarding at Brisbane Boys’ College truly unique. Matthew was appointed to the role earlier this year and is no stranger to boarding or BBC for that matter, having taught at the school since 1995. Matthew has worked extensively with boarders and staff as Residential Boarding Master, Boarding Supervisor and prior to his most recent appointment, Senior School Boarding Coordinator.

For me, and certainly our entire boarding team, it's about creating an environment in which our boarders can grow and thrive,” he said. “Boarding is part of who we are. For our boarders, BBC provides a quality education within an inclusive, connected community and in turn, our boarders bring their diversity of experiences and varied perspectives to our city school. “Boarding provides boys with so many opportunities to develop as people and we want to ensure that our boarding house

“Community sits at the core of our boarding house; it’s about honouring each boy’s individuality, whilst fostering a strong sense of unity.” These sentiments have been echoed by the boys themselves in recent interviews featured in the school’s weekly news. For third generation boarder Callum Coe, from Durong Queensland, it’s all about mateship. “The best thing about BBC Boarding is having plenty of fun with my mates,” says Callum, not to mention the once a term lunch special – pie and chips. “The greatest lesson I have learnt while being a boarder is to adapt to many different situations and how to get along with all different types of people.” For Lachlan Khal from the Sunshine Coast, boarding encapsulates the true essence of



FROM THE BANKS OF BULLOO TO A BUSTLING BOARDING HOUSE Growing up in Quilpie - a town of 560 people on the banks of the Bulloo River, some 200 kilometres west of Charleville and 980 kilometres from Brisbane - Ben Burges always knew that boarding school would enable him to access the unique opportunities needed to thrive in what he loves most, the world of technology.Yet moving from a class of one, to a school of 1560 boys and 130 boarders represented quite a transition. Situated in Outback Queensland, Quilpie’s economy is based on grazing and mining industries, with the area hosting one of the largest deposits of boulder opal in the world, in addition to both gas and oil. It’s also home to Australia’s largest dinosaur, a Titanosaur nicknamed Cooper – a fact less known – which was discovered in 2007.

teamwork. “My favourite thing about BBC Boarding is working with all the boys as a team and learning that we can trust and rely on each other to be there when we need help. Being aware of other people’s needs while understanding and accepting what it means to live as a community is an important lesson I’ve learned along the way.” Whilst working on the farm and wake boarding on his dam may be the best thing about home for Year 9 student Ben Fenwicke, from Texas Queensland, it’s the diversity of boarding which he enjoys. “The best thing at BBC is that there are so many opportunities. Anything is possible if you have a go at BBC. My favourite thing about being a boarder is having access to the facilities and staff after hours, especially the teachers during prep time.” Brisbane Boys’ College opened its doors to boarders in 1909. Since then, young men from all walks of life and all corners of the globe have enjoyed the camaraderie that boarding affords; building lifelong friendships in the process.

Yet despite missing his family and his dog, Dudley, Ben declares that, “there really was nothing to do” in the town and much of his time was spent at home honing his computer gaming skills; skills which Ben has come to realise are highly valued at BBC in activities such as Robotics and Information Technology. Twelve months in and Ben is enjoying the diversity which comes with boarding life, not to mention his new found interest – ping pong – having recently won the Junior Division 2 competition with ease at the regional championships.

independence and responsibility, supporting them outside of boarding is equally as important. “The Home Away from Home project aims to connect boarders with day students and establish a mutual relationship between the boys so they are able to experience a typical family environment while they are away from home and conversely for day students to better understand life as a boarder,” said Hazel. “A letter was sent home to Years 7 and 8 day and boarding parents earlier this year requesting expressions of interest from families willing to take part in the program. We received an overwhelmingly positive response, with more than 140 families willing to support the initiative,” she said.

Unbeknown to Ben at the time, he has also been instrumental in the formulation of BBC’s ‘Home Away from Home’ initiative, simply by providing staff with valuable feedback on what it’s like to be a boarder living so far away from home.

“In the case of Ben he made a likely friendship with Brooklyn Stevens as they both played football on the same team. Ben admits that he didn’t really know Brooklyn that well until he was invited to Brooklyn’s home and got to know his family a little better. Uncannily, the boys share a number of interests as well as recognising very similar family structures including adult siblings and a much loved family dog.

According to BBC Counsellor and driver of the project Hazel Raymond, while boarders are supported by boarding house staff, such as House Mother Josie Pavone, as they make the adjustment from their family environment to developing greater

“Brooklyn has also spent an evening in the Boarding House, unperturbed by the noise of a full dining room seated for dinner, and enjoyed a bus trip to ‘Skyzone’, an hour of trampolining and getting to know a number of boarders very quickly.



“What’s great about the program is that it’s extending the friendship base for both boarders and day students, which is key to creating a connected community and in fostering lifelong friendships.”

Gus’ Mum, Justine, saw the program as a wonderful opportunity to connect with boarding parents - an opportuity that wouldn't naturally occur without these types of initiatitves.

Year 7 boarder Alex Reid, has also been enjoying the benefits of such a program and a wider friendship circle.

"I can only image how hard it is to have your child so far away from you. I wanted Alex’s parents, Chris and Julian, to know that Alex has a home away from home here, that he can call us at any time, and that we promise to take care of him. Hopefully, we can all get together one day – preferably on a beach in the Solomon Islands!" said Justine.

Having previously been educated in the Solomon Islands, Alex followed his sister’s footsteps in completing his secondary education in Australia. A long way from home, Alex had to deal with the common experience of homesickness and missing his family. With almost 1000 islands and 120 different dialects, life in inner city Brisbane proved a different experience from the Solomon Islands.

“After communicating with Alex’s parents, Justine was happy to assume the responsibility of being Alex’s host and together with Gus' dad Jim, they took both boys to the Gold Coast,” said Hazel.

Unlike some of the weekly boarders, Alex rarely has the opportunity to travel home mid-term. In order to keep himself busy, Alex absorbed himself in his studies and the co-curricular activities on offer. Engaged in one of the school’s most popular and successful activities, Robotics, Alex met Gus Gannon, who has been at Brisbane Boys’ College since he started Prep in 2009.

“It was great for the parents to also be able to connect in this way, and to informally share stories about their sons,” she said.

Gus is extensively involved with the College, be it in his academic endeavours or co-curricular activities and was intrigued by life in the Boarding House. While he is yet to have a trial boarding experience, Gus is looking forward to comparing boarding food to his Mum’s cooking.

“The boys have strengthened their friendship through this shared experience and are learning a lot about each other’s culture and interests. It is hoped that they will maintain their contact and forge a friendship for life."

“The boys spent the day checking out the wild seas and extent of beach erosion after the recent storm activity. After an exhausting afternoon, the boys were treated to a ‘Man Tea’ – a male version of high tea with sausage rolls and hot chips featuring on the menu.

Tutankhamen’s tomb! Pompeii! Machu Picchu! Titanic! What do they have in common? An archaeologist. It was an archaeologist who found them and explained their significance. Archaeology is one of the most exciting areas of study, combining the latest scientific techniques - think CSI - with ancient documents and clues. Everyone is interested in the past and archaeologists unravel its secrets. Year 10 Ancient History students were recently introduced to this fanscinating world when they visited the UQ Archaeology and Teaching Research Centre for some hands-on ‘digging’. Boys ‘excavated’ a small site finding a range of artefacts which illustrated various aspects of past societies. That pottery shard was not just rubbish and those human remains tell much of how a person lived and died. According to BBC’s Coordinator of Ancient History, Jan Christopher, the boys were introduced to a different world under the guidance of BBC Old Boy, Antoine Muller. “They were amazed at the opportunities archaeology offers, including travel,” said Ms Christopher. “Antoine is a Masters student and has been involved in digs in Turkey, Bulgaria and South Africa, to name a few locations,” she said. “Archaeology is not just for land based searches; underwater archaeology is a growth area and not just because of the discovery of the Titanic. It’s an incredibly exciting area and one which boys in Years 10, 11 and 12 have the opportunity to study and explore in depth.”


Navigating uncharted territory The National Science and Technology Centre in Canberra is renowned for its work in fostering a greater understanding of science and technology nationwide in a way which is fun, interactive and relevant. In May, BBC’s Year 10 Mathematics B students were fortunate to hear from Questacon’s Director, Dr Stuart Kohlgen, who spoke about the exciting world of STEM in Australia. Dr Kohlgen provided an insight into what he describes as the

“Laureate Professor, Graeme Jameson took this simple mathematical

‘ecosystem of opportunities’ that come from not only understanding the

observation and applied that thinking to something which is called froth

mechanics of mathematics, but the thinking behind it.

flotation,” he explained to the boys.

“One of the things we aim to do is to work to change the way

“Jameson and many others used froth flotation bubbles to extract

young people think about mathematics,” said Dr Kohlgen. “Not the

valuable minerals from various ores and he dramatically improved the

details behind it necessarily, but how each one of you thinks about

way of generating finer bubbles more efficiently. That won him, this

mathematics and STEM careers, to promote a deeper understanding of

year, the $250,000 Prime Minster’s Prize for Innovation. His technology

how those things work together,” he said.

has improved the efficiency of Australian mining to the point where that

Whilst not a scientist (although he gradated as one) nor a

single invention, that innovation, based on a mathematical principle has

mathematician, Kohlgen likens his role to that of a ‘foreign

earned nearly $100 billion for Australia. His success was based on the

correspondent’, a role which has enabled him to speak with and work

fact that his understanding extended beyond the mechanics alone.

alongside some of the country’s brightest and most creative thinkers –

“In another example, a number of geologists teamed with

people like Nobel Laureate, Professor Brain Schmidt, who discovered

mathematicians, to reprocess data on 600,000 earthquakes as a probe

dark matter and Google’s Engineering Community and Outreach

to look inside the earth and what they found was an enormous reservoir

Manager, Sally Anne Williams.

of water in soft rock, 600 kilometers underneath central Asia. It was

Drawing on his experience, Kohlgen encouraged the boys to think about the interface between mathematics and its application – not the direct application, but thought processes it inspires. “Have you ever wondered why bubbles help with cleaning? It’s a wonderful bit of physics – which I won’t go into now – but needless to say the power of the cleansing action goes up as the bubbles go down

entirely a mathematical discovery.” Kohlgen encouraged boys to consider mathematics as a way of thinking about the real world; to use it as a map to navigate its complexities and to extract knowledge to help simplify and solve problems. “The joy of mathematics is not when you only know how to get from A

and there is a wonderful bit of mathematics that you can explore that

to B, but when you’re brave enough to strike out on your own. Exploring

looks at why that’s the case,” said Dr Kohlgen.

mathematics is one of the great mental challenges which awaits you.

And whilst talk of bubble baths and cleaning may have seemed somewhat off topic momentarily, Kohlgen’s point about application and

When you have these skills you can go out into uncharted territory and make discoveries.”

innovation quickly became clear.




“Mathematics may be abstract but it’s not dull and it’s not about computing. It is about reasoning and proving our core activity. It is about imagination, the talent which we most praise. It is about finding the truth.”


FRENCH MATHEMATICIAN AND FIELDS MEDAL WINNER, CEDRIC VILLANI, BELIEVES THAT MATHEMATICAL EXPLANATIONS ARE NOT ONLY BEAUTIFUL, “THEY CHANGE OUR VISION OF THE WORLD.” In his recent TED Talk, Cedric presents a compelling case for mathematics as one of the most influential drivers of change, innovation

problems and are given 45 minutes to deliver the solution. In the afternoon session, the bar is raised yet again, with a relay where

and progress; the vehicle to revealing our ‘hidden truths’. According to

20 problems are solved by consecutively seated team members. Each

Villani, “Mathematics may be abstract but it’s not dull and it’s not about

team consists of two pairs of students with the aim being to score the

computing. It is about reasoning and proving our core activity. It is about

highest combined score.

imagination, the talent which we most praise. It is about finding the truth.” Despite its complexities, one thing remains clear, mathematics requires persistence and persistence delivers reward. Some of the

According to Headmaster Graeme McDonald, the boys’ success is a reflection of the strength of the school’s Mathematics Acceleration program. “In Year 6 we have five boys doing a Year 7 course of study. In Year 8,

world’s most successful ventures to date are based on, as Villani puts it,

20 boys are doing Year 9 work and we have 20 Year 9 boys doing Year

“… ultimately, good algorithm”.

10 work,” said Graeme.

A number of BBC boys recently showed their own mathematical

“However, the success of any program is dependent on the people

endurance at the Metropolitan West Mathematics Challenge, held at

having the vision to bring it to life. The architect of our ‘Mathematics

Indooroopilly State High School, with BBC’s Primary team (Year 6)

Olympiad’ type program is the amazing Chicri Maksoud. His passion

claiming first place overall on the day, the Junior Team 1 and 2 (Years

for Mathematics and his capacity to inspire our gifted mathematicians is

7 and 8) placing third and second respectively, the Intermediate team

legendary,” he said.

(Years 9 and 10) placing first and the Senior Team 1 and 2 (Years 11 and 12) placing second and fourth respectively. The challenge, which takes the form of a mathematical Olympiad,

According to Chicri, the aim of the competition is to foster interest in creative problem solving. “It’s an opportunity to provide boys with a day of intellectual fun

requires competitors to draw on their problem solving abilities and to

in a scholarly atmosphere and to further stimulate their interest in

work together as a team to efficiently work through the problems and

mathematics. The boys were amazing and are to be commended for not

maximise points. In the morning session teams are presented with 10

only their effort but their aptitude,” said Chicri.



BOYS BUILDING; BUILDING BOYS “Recently a prominent American business magnate said that if he could have his life over again, he would find something to do with his hands. It is sometimes true that we read too much and make too little. What satisfaction the making of something gives the creator! You realise this when you see the smile of triumph on the face of a boy who has just completed a model of the latest British ‘Super Marine Spitfire’ or one of a perfect old-time ‘Windjammer’.” – Hobby House Notes, 1939 Portal.

It may have been written more than 75 years

Hobby House now reopened, thanks to the

they essentially act as the building blocks

ago, but the sentiments from this 1939 Portal

fundraising efforts of the Junior School Support

for hands-on active learning where boys can

extract remain true today – amazing things

Group, backed by the College and wider

develop their numeracy, through measurement

happen when we create; when we choose to

school community.

and counting, fine motor skills through

‘overthink’ less and freely ‘do’ more. In 1936, during the Christmas holidays a

According to Head of Early Years Mark Griffith, the idea to reinstate BBC’s Hobby

construction, as well as social skills through team work and communication,” he said.

small weatherboard building was erected to

House was born out of a desire to provide

provide boys with a suitable place in which to

further opportunities for boys to discover new

Cozens and Alan Dobinson, who both share a

carry out their various hobbies. It was decided


love of carpentry, have been particularly inspiring

that a Hobby Club should be formed and a

"More often than not, boys don’t experience

“The efforts of Junior School teachers Oliver

throughout the process, and their knowledge

committee consisting of six members was

a workshop environment until they reach high

has been instrumental in the development of this

elected at a general meeting. A fee of sixpence

school, when they participate in subjects such

new facility for our boys.”

was paid by members of the club each term

as graphics or manual arts. Having various

to pay for the upkeep of equipment. Several

outlets for boys to explore their creativity and

building something from scratch makes teaching

donations, described as ‘very acceptable’,

potentially unearth hidden talents is incredibly

in this area incredibly rewarding.

were received and assisted with painting and

important to us,” said Mark.

equipping the building. A similar story reveals itself in 2016 with the

For Oliver, the enjoyment boys derive from

“At this stage Hobby House operates as a

“The space is equipped with a range of tools

after school activity, with two sessions held each

and while they might be used for construction,

week with boys working on a fine timber project


over the course of a term,” said Oliver. “It’s been wonderful to see strong interest from our boys and to watch their skills and craftsmanship develop over time. In a particularly technological world, it’s refreshing to see boys investing the time to learn these practical, and what we see as foundational skills, which will serve them well for their lifetime,” he said.

In the same way that Science, Maths and English provide strong foundations for learning, participating in this type of activity enables boys to acquire a very hands-on understanding of the world around them, how things work and the principles behind construction.” Beyond skill acquisition, the health benefits of having a hobby have also been well documented and acknowledged by scientists across the world, with such activities said to increase our mindfulness and focus, whilst decreasing stress. And for all those hobby enthusiasts out there, the following extract from the 1939 Portal will no doubt resonate in terms of how immersing in one’s hobby can make the world simply disappear. “On Old Boys’ Day this year a

AGFORCE CONNECT With a growing selection of food choices and a declining understanding amongst children of where our food comes from, food education is now more important than ever.

particularly good display was staged by our members. Planned preparation

Brisbane Boys’ College recently teamed with AgForce to host AgConnect Junior, for the second

for it commenced weeks beforehand.

year in a row, with more than 480 primary school students from across Brisbane coming together on

Visitors were impressed with the

John Noblet Oval to learn about the importance of agriculture to their everyday lives.

wealth of constructive talent which was

AgForce General President, Grant Maudsley said the aim of the AgConnect program was to

displayed. Aeroplanes were suspended

increase awareness, particularly among the urban primary students, about where their food and fibre

from the roof; ships, modern and

comes from, and why farming is important in their community.

ancient, adorned the benches; rare

“More often than not, urban primary school students are under the impression that yoghurt is

foreign stamps were exhibited in stamp

plucked off trees and sausages are sprouted under the fluorescent lights of their local supermarket,”

albums; intricate charts and drawings

Mr Maudsley said.

occupied the walls; while radio sets beneath the benches were visibly and audibly present. Meantime the

“We have a number of agricultural industry displays which feature hands-on activities, with highlights including food preparation and milking demonstrations and the biosecurity detector dogs.” BBC’s Year 3 students were able to enjoy the interactive experience and shortly after the event

members, apparently oblivious of the

were treated to an excursion to the RNA Showgrounds where they learnt more about food, produce

onlookers’ gaze, were absorbed each in

and animals as part of their Farm to Table unit.

his own particular hobby.”

BBC was one of 18 schools to receive a special invitation to the Rural Discovery Day – an event aimed at championing the agricultural industry.




THE ESSENCE OF ACTIVISM More than 140 students from across South East Queensland joined together at BBC in April for a day of thought provoking and inspiring discussion as part of Amnesty International’s annual school conference. For Captain of BBC’s Amnesty International Club, Angus Briggs, it was an opportunity to converse with like-minded peers. We thank Angus for sharing his reflections from the day in this edition of Collegian.

WORLD VIEW On Friday 29 April boys, were given a firsthand insight into life in a warzone, through the eyes of journalist Michael Ware, as part of a special Amnesty International presentation. As one of the few western journalists to live in Iraq during the war, Michael delivered a powerful speech, enriched with incredible anecdotes in

On 15 April, Brisbane Boys’ College

people at once; the message will become

which he discussed how war has a profound and

hosted the 2016 Queensland Amnesty

lost and convoluted. Rather, it is far better

dehumanising impact upon its young combatants.

Schools Conference. It was an incredible

to deliver a more personal message

opportunity for students from different

to those close to home and slowly but

Magazine's correspondent in Afghanistan in late

Queensland schools, with an interest in

surely, opinions start to change.

2001, just months after the attacks of 9/11, and

human rights, to converse with like-

A very interesting address was given

He began his Middle East career as Time

headed to Iraq prior to the coalition's invasion in

minded people and to listen to others

by Mr Greg Shadbolte, a member of

2003. He was soon appointed Baghdad Bureau

who were at the forefront of human rights

the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander

Chief and wrote numerous articles detailing the

issues. The core focus of this year’s

Legal Service of Queensland (ATSILS).

war, including cover stories from Fallujah and

conference was activism.

He spoke of the work ATSILS does, in


Activism is simply a form of active

particular that it was a community based

In May 2006 he moved to CNN and lived at

awareness. Activism itself is often

organisation established to provide

it's Baghdad bureau for more than three years

connected with negative connotations. It

professional and cultural legal services

before relocating to New York City, in order to

is a term that often appears in mainstream

for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander

cover a number of conflict zones around the

media, in connection with violent protests

people across Queensland. One of its

world, including not only Iraq but also Afghanistan,

or even terrorism. This is an unfortunate

main missions was to influence positive

Pakistan, and Mexico. Michael last reported for

portrayal, but it does exist and it is one

change in the community and help

CNN in December of 2009.

that must be overcome. Because of this

Indigenous people involved with the

portrayal, people often turn a blind eye

justice system.

to protests, believing them to be extreme

The conference was a huge success

and unnecessary. When this occurs,

with both students and teachers being

awareness is lost.

led in creative activism workshops by

It was discussed at the conference that

BBC’s Head of History and Geography, Peter Auliciems, said the speech was incredibly moving and a powerful reminder of the devastating effects of war. “Boys listened intently as he spoke of how

Amnesty International staff members. It

he went undercover, living with the Taliban, and

the challenge for all of us is to find a way

was a reminder to us all that not every

thanks to his Iraqi insurgent host survived a

to be an activist, whilst simultaneously

campaign will be successful, but each

potential beheading when kidnapped by Al Qaeda

escaping the negativity surrounding

time we put in the time and effort to raise

in the streets of central Baghdad,” said Peter.

the word. Indeed, this is a challenge

awareness, we will possibly change the

that Amnesty recognises in its motto –

minds of a few people. Over time that

boys to think about the world we now live in and

Thinking Globally, Acting Locally. They

awareness becomes cumulative and that

the role they can play in the future, to help resolve

understand that change will not happen

is the very essence of activism.

such incredibly challenging and complex issues,”

if activism is targeted at thousands of

“He concluded his address by challenging the

he said.





We talk about boys' education all

Who ever said boys don't like

the time, but what does it actually

to read, or don't like to write?

mean? We share insights from

Find out more about a range of

educator and parenting advocate

initiatitves, working to engage boys

Clark Wight, who spoke with staff

in the joy of reading and writing.

earlier this year.

HOW WE CONNECT: THE REAL STORIES We explore the human side of education, sharing insights from those at the coalface.





Boys develop om the core fr from the inside out run into out - that's why they stuff. fit through 17 boys will try and e when they the door at the one tim finish class.

That's why

THE DIFFERENCES BETWEEN MEN AND WOMEN HAVE LONG BEEN DOCUMENTED AND DISCUSSED – THE WAY OUR BRAINS ARE WIRED, HOW WE THINK, HOW WE ACT, HOW WE MAKE AND RATIONALISE DECISIONS. FOR SOME THE LITERATURE IS DEEPLY EMPOWERING AND INSIGHTFUL. FOR OTHERS IT’S MERELY SEMANTICS AND AGREEING ON THE DIFFERENCES CAN BE DIFFICULT, WITH RESEARCH CONSTANTLY REVEALING DATA THAT GENERATES CONFLICTING AND VARIED VIEWS. Men and women are different. Popular culture tells us so. You only have to be one or the other to know this. Yet when it comes to boys’ education, the conversation needn’t be driven by how these differences advocate for single-sex schooling. It’s not about that. In fact, this style of thinking, if anything, has created some dangerous prophecies along the way. Boys’ education is about relationships and how our educators – both men and women – are able to connect with the boys in their classroom and in turn, connect these boys to their learning. It’s about educators drawing on their knowledge of boys’ development to make conscious and deliberate

SIDENOTE decisions as to how they can inspire, motivate and empower each individual to find his place in the world. It’s about reconnecting boys with what it means to be a man today and what that looks like for each one of them as an individual. Jumping in mud, exploring the great outdoors, rites of passage, patience, humour, compassion, competition and hands-on learning might be part of the narrative, but understanding boys to ensure they feel understood is the story.

THE POWER OF COLLABORATION Clark’s presentation represented the keynote address for this year’s PMSA Day, a professional development initiative designed to empower and inspire academic staff through the sharing of ideas and knowledge. According to Director of Professional Learning, Sean Riordan, Clark’s session delivered some thought provoking insights while affirming the College’s approach to boys’ education. “Clark was very inspirational. He has great insight into the way boys function, both in relation to learning and to the way they interact and engage. Both teaching and non-teaching staff were buzzing after his presentation, and very keen to action some of his ideas,” said Sean. “We took great heart from Clark’s comments specifically about our new 'All About the Boy' Manifesto, and the work we are doing to embed the principles and associated practices which underpin it across the College,” he said. “As a collective academic staff, we

“When a girl walks into a classroom,

challenged ourselves during the remainder of the day to share processes that are working well, and to continue to look for opportunities to engage our boys further. "Teachers gathered in large and small academic faculty groups to explore our ideas around boys’ education in more detail. This enabled teachers to discuss and share strategies and approaches that work in a general sense with boys, and to identify subject specific strategies for improving student outcomes. “Hands on tasks, active learning, and scaffolding tasks were all popular strategies that are working well. Many teachers also talked about the importance of building relationships with boys. “As sessions progressed, teachers gathered in Pastoral House groups to plan for effective processes that would engage boys during Pastoral Care sessions. Housemasters and House Tutors explored activities that create House spirit and a sense of belonging, tapping into the tribal nature of boys. “Teachers also engaged in elective sessions across concepts such as mindfulness and individual learning pathways.”

different ways in which girls and boys learn,

they think, ‘What do I need to do to please

Clark also warns against reinforcing those

you?’. When boys come in they usually go,

stereotypes which have been embedded

sigh, ‘What are you going to do to get to

over time.

know me?’. They are completely different,”

“There is one phrase I’d like to get rid of

explains Clark Wight, an experienced

and that’s ‘boys will be boys’. It sets the

educator, conscious parenting advocate and

bar really low. When we use this saying it

leadership consultant.

diminishes our boys, our young men. Boys

Clark presented to BBC staff in March

will be what you expect them to be. If you

as part of the PMSA’s annual professional

set the bar incredibly high they will almost

development day, sharing his insights on

always reach it.

engaging boys in the classroom.

“When people choose to believe that boys

“Boys develop from the inside out – from

are messy, disorganised, sloppy, smelly

the core out – that’s why they run into stuff.

or dishonest, I challenge this by saying

That’s why 17 boys will try and fit through

boys are incredibly sensitive creatures. As

the door at the one time when they finish

educators at a boys' school you no doubt

class,” said Clark.

see it differently here every day – you see

"Boy development is messy. It’s not linear, it’s all over the shop and it’s unpredictable,

boys who are loving, sensitive, fun. “A boy will never tell you this, but when

but that’s what makes teaching boys

he walks into a classroom the only question

unbelievably fun.”

he’ll be asking is ‘Do I matter to you?’. Once

And whilst we need to acknowledge the

he knows he matters, he will learn. I’m not




even going to mention pedagogy and curriculum, because these words don’t matter, if the boy feels he doesn’t matter. “Boys need to know they belong to something bigger than themselves. They need to connect to something – be it drama, dance, debating, a sports team. “Relevance is also hugely important. It has to have relevance to them. Relevance is essentially an emotional connection. Boys don’t want to be known as a test score, they don’t want to be known as a title – be it captain or prefect – they have to know they mean something to you.”


Clark’s insights certainly give weight to the enormity of a teacher’s role in the learning equation, a sentiment supported by From Whom the Boy Toils - a study commissioned by the International Boys’ School Coalition which involved 2000 boys and 200 teachers. “For the first question boys were asked, ‘What’s the best pedagogy that you’ve ever seen that has helped you to learn the best?’ You cannot mention the teacher; you can only describe the pedagogy,” shares Clark. “1,986 of those boys wrote about a teacher, even though they were told they couldn’t. They could not make a separation between the teaching and the teacher. “Participants were also asked, ‘If there was a relationship problem between you and your teacher, whose job is it to fix it?’ 2000 boys unanimously said it was the teacher’s job. “Boys don’t naturally know how to fix it or how to establish robust relationships – it is always the adult’s job to fix the relationship. As teachers we have to work out how we can establish a relationship with the boys in our class and sometimes you may need to bring in a third party.” Clark likens this to making sure each boy has a lighthouse, someone who can protect him from the rocks. “Boys will crash into the rocks sometimes and you have to know who the lighthouse is for each individual boy. Who is the person that can look at them and say, “I totally get you…?” It’s not necessarily the counsellor, or their Housemaster, it could be their old Year 4 teacher or someone from student services.”

DISPELLING MYTHS, CHANGING PERCEPTIONS AND CHALLENGING BOYS “In one of my presentations, I put forward the following question to the men in the room – ‘How many of you were told, when you were young, that you’ve got what it takes to be a great man?’ Only three men, out of 300 raised their hand. “We have a generational problem, we have stopped saying this to our young men, and when we do, it has to be real, it has to be specific. We need to be saying, “You’ve got what it takes to be a great man because…” “Another common misperception I hear all the time is boys don’t write. Who really believes this? They will write incredibly well if their audience is bigger than themselves and you. If they know the paper is going to be published elsewhere they will do an incredible job.” Providing boys with an innovative space to learn is also essential and 21st century learning spaces, such as BBC’s Middle School Precinct, lend themselves to fostering an environment conducive to how boys learn. “When boys are confined to a piece of paper they feel limited. If you say to boys, write it anywhere in the classroom – on the whiteboard, glass – it’s amazing what can happen when teachers enable this to occur."




Clark talked about connection as the foundation for boys'

education, echoing the words of thought leader, vulnerability and shame researcher and highly acclaimed author, Brene Brown. Brene believes that connection sits at the core of our

existence, a view she formed following extensive research, which revealed thousands of stories about how people have dealt with vulnerability and shame in their lives. “We are hardwired to connect with others, it’s what gives purpose and meaning to our lives, and without it there is suffering…” she says in her book, Daring Greatly. “In order for connection to happen, we have to allow ourselves to be seen. Really, truly deeply seen,” says Brene. According to Clark this can, at times, present somewhat of a challenge for teachers.

and you have to know who the lighthouse is for each individual boy.

22 | BBC FEATURE “If you can create a shared experience with a student outside of the classroom, you’ve got them forever. If they get to see you fall asleep on the bus and snore, or wear terrible shorts, that creates connection and memory. That’s what makes your connection in the classroom strong. “You have to be willing to show up without a mask, or as Brene articulates it, to be vulnerable. Boys want to see all of your wonderfulness, humanness, messiness. You have to be willing to laugh at yourself, make mistakes, let them into your life – and not on Facebook and Twitter – but they need to know you’re vulnerable and you’re you. And it can be hard because as teachers we were never taught this. “Boys have no idea of their potential, we need to show them their potential. Our boys want success and it’s our job as educators to give them the tools and hold accountability high. It’s our job to help them live their dream and find their spark, that gift that will change their world and ours.” A pretty amazing job to have. We thank Clark for enabling us to share his insights with the wider community.

+ SOUND BITES We recently sat down with a number of Year 12 boys to find out more about what’s on their mind – the big issues, what they like, what they don’t like and their general take on life and school. In this edition, as a precursor to the full stories, we share some sound bites.


"There are a lot of lasts in Year 12, a lot of final things.

I don’t think that’s a bad thing necessarily. I think you are progressively finishing up one stage of your life to go in to another. It doesn’t bother me because I’m over it. I heard someone say the other day the best time of your life shouldn’t only take place during your time at school. And I think people will realise once they graduate, to coin a Disney term of all things, it’s 'a whole new world' out


there ready to be discovered. I’m looking forward to that."

TOM BURKE WHAT’S FRONT AND CENTRE IN THE WORLD FOR YOU – WHAT WORRIES YOU, EXCITES YOU? "I’m worried about university and choosing the right

course – that’s something I want to try and sort out as soon as possible. But I’m looking at Melbourne University which is exciting – I’ve been to Melbourne a few times and have just loved it. I really missed the UK when I first came to Brisbane and Melbourne feels sort of like home. In terms of the world I think we are pretty privileged and I don’t think we hear enough of that sometimes – respect is a big thing for me. Everyone seems to be getting a lot older a lot faster but not maturing at the same rate, and I think it’s because of things like phones and the connectivity of the world and how they’ve changed the way we all interact."


"School camps, I love them. They gave me time to do

the things I really enjoy like fishing, camping, anything 'outdoorsy' really. I’m the type of person who always has to be doing something. And camp gives you a sense of freedom. The fresh air lets you clear your head and forget about everything. When I’m doing exam block and the Year 8s go on camp I’m always so jealous."





OPINION NUTTING OUT NAPLAN During May students across the country

When it comes to talking about literacy

to continually inform our teaching and

in Years 3, 5, 7 and 9 knuckled down for

and indeed numeracy, for BBC, it’s all about

learning strategies. And yes, our results

three days of NAPLAN. The assessment

developing relationships as the foundation

matter - we have a critical role to play in

program continues to attract widespread

for learning. We know that boys learn their

shaping national literacy and numeracy.

commentary in the media each year,

teacher first and foremost. When a boy

But NAPLAN represents only one piece of

generating lively conversation among

knows he matters, only then will he be

the pie - exceptional teachers, exceptional

parents and educators nationwide. With it

willing to learn.

culture, ongoing professional development

comes its staunch advocates and equally

As a diagnostic tool, NAPLAN has its role

and the partnership between parent and

critics and of course much debate -

to play, but it’s the process of improvement

NAPLAN forces schools to teach to the test

that we’re most interested in and how

and hence a narrowing of the curriculum;

we can equip boys with the thinking skills

boy, tailor his experience and support him

the test holds schools accountable; it

required to get from A to B, or perhaps, B

as an individual. This sits at the heart of

causes unnecessary stress for children; it

to A. We’re interested in developing their

our guiding philosophy ‘All About the Boy’.

illustrates a widening gap in national literacy

communication skills as a means to improve

Our approach is, of course, supported by a

and numeracy rates; and let’s not forget the

their higher order thinking and ability to

range of initiatives designed to strengthen

old public vs private stand off.

comprehend - be it in English or Maths,

the learning experience such as our

Science or Geography. Most importantly we

Accelerated Reader program in the Middle

a case of it being good or bad. Education

want to provide our boys with experiences

School which you can read more about in

is complex and learning is relational, it’s

that enable them to transfer their skills; this

the articles which follow.

human. The problem isn’t necessarily

is where the real learning and growth takes

NAPLAN itself, but perhaps the unwarranted

place and this is why we’ll continue to invest

emphasis placed on the results and the

in relationships first and foremost.

Yet, like anything in education, it’s not

narrow narrative this can generate amid the ‘noise’.

school all form part of the equation. Our job, as educators, is to know your

So when it comes to NAPLAN, yes we’ll be using the data (as one piece of evidence)




“Research has shown that reading is the

individuals by their ‘reading age’, and this

most effective way students can improve

can, at times, be disheartening for students,

their outcomes. Year 7 represents an ideal

and it’s certainly a counterintuitive way to

group to participate in this style of program.

motivate boys. In this instance the reward of

At this age, boys are enthusiastic, responsive

improvement feels much more authentic and

to praise and have a strong desire to

relevant to their lives.”

achieve. It’s also where boys are learning to consolidate their reading and comprehension skills. The more success they have at this

BBC has also developed a rewards system in support of the program. “To make it just that little more fun, boys

level, the better they will do in the future,”

receive a certain award - such as iTunes,

says Corinna.

Dymocks or movie vouchers - when reaching

“Beyond this, the program is also about

various achievements, with a giant pizza

fostering good habits and getting boys to

party and movie event held at the end of

think positively about reading and writing. It’s

the semester for those who’ve reached their

not uncommon to hear boys grunt or sigh

target points,” explains Jenni.

when you mention these two words,” she said. “Boys undertake an initial quiz to determine

“So far this year all the Year 7 boys have read 2,180 books in total and the top six outstanding readers, Christopher Choi,

their book level and are then provided

Zachary Wix, Darrian Sullivan, Hamish

with a list of titles (which vary in difficulty

Buntain, Joshua Roach, and Aryan Goel have

within a specified scale) which they must

read 308 books between them. These boys

read to progress to the next level. Boys

were acknowledged at a recent assembly

are required to complete a comprehensive

and were presented with a trophy and

quiz, which relates to each individual book,

certificate from the Headmaster,” she said.

to demonstrate their understanding. These

“At the end of Semester 1, the program

questions require boys to draw on higher

appears to be working incredibly well and

order thinking skills and are written in a

most boys have reached their personal

similar way to that of a NAPLAN writing

targets. One parent recently wrote to me to


share just how excited her son was about his

“As a boys’ school, the program is

results thus far and for someone that doesn’t

particularly fitting - it draws on their love

usually read books, just how much he is

for competition. Boys are rewarded for

enjoying it.

improvement. Many programs like this define

“Accelerated Reader also generates



HEAT, SAND, AND A GRANULAR DELUGE The world was consumed by sand. Everything was sand. Consumed by the comprehensive data which provides teachers

throat drying, lip cracking, miniscule shards of rock. Felix staggered to his feet,

with an insight into how each boy is progressing

dust penetrating the small sheen of moisture that protected his eyes like white

and parents are encouraged to check on their

hot needles. He gasped and spluttered, blinking furiously against the storm.

son’s progress via Parent CONEQT.”

He looked around and what little hope he had left instantly dissipated. The boy

For Corinna, when it comes to boys enjoying reading, they just need to find what they like. “It’s our job to provide these opportunities

named Felix was lost. Step after step, Felix lumbered on. The sand reached out to his feet and sucked his legs down into the granular deluge. It was like moisture had never

for discovery, and to highlight that making the

even brushed against his throat. Any trace of wet instantly vaporised with each

time to read is as important as making time to

shuddering breath he took. Trudge after trudge, Felix slaved on, in a direction he

play sport or learn a musical instrument." said

hoped led to his village.

Corinna. “Accelerated Reader helps them with

The Australian sun showed no mercy. Skin burned and blistered as the heat threatened to overwhelm him. My God he was thirsty. The stupid, childish

inference (pertinent to NAPLAN) and cross

mistake of chasing a tumbleweed away from the village turning into a lethal

curricular comprehension and enables them to

death sentence. The mere thought disgusted him.

practise these skills regularly," she said. The program is supported by a team of

Time ticked away. The sun advanced higher and higher in the midday sky and still the heat intensified. It felt like being submerged in red hot embers. He could

teaching staff including each boy’s English

almost hear himself cooking, the fat bubbling and spitting. His clothes did little

Teacher, Library Staff and their Literacy Teacher

to protect him against the searing heat of the remorseless desert.

(ASC teacher). "This approach enables us to work together,

It had been two hours, and the voices inside Felix’s head flared. Telling him there was no hope, telling him he had failed, clawing him into a void of

share insights about each boy, strengthen our

emptiness. His vision blurred. Black spots flitted before his eyes like evil sprites.

understanding of him as an individual and, as

He collapsed on the sand with the grace of a wounded elephant.

a result, target the way in which we teach. It’s

Tender hands lifted him and prised his mouth open. Water trickled down his

differentiated learning and teaching in action -

parched throat. He sat up as a wave of dizziness surged through him. “It’s okay,

the key to improving a student’s literacy skills

son,” whispered a voice. “You’re home.” A wave of joy flushed through him,

and overall learning outcomes."

purging him of his vexation. He gulped more water and promptly threw up. He

The enthusiasm displayed so far for the

tried again, sipping the water this time and it had the grace to stay down. Felix’s

Accelerated Reader by the Year 7s has seen the

thoughts ricocheted back and forth through his skull. Felix was home. The boy

MAP Centre join the program with the Boarding

named Felix was home.

House also forming a Rudd House class of Years 8 to 10 boarders.

The celebration was a cacophony of music and laughter, all mashed together to form one continuous roar. As a fresh wave of ecstasy overcame his senses and left his skin tingling, Felix threw himself, almost maliciously, into the raucous merry making.




It was a time when the earth was bare. A wasteland of scorching deserts and ominous cliffs. The small villages sprinkled around the desert were poor and lived in fear of the terrible creature that kept earth in this barren state. One of these villages was nestled under the shadows of a cliff face, so long that it stretched out to the horizon and so sloped that it threatened to topple over and flatten the town beneath. And although nobody spoke of it, they all suspected the terrible creature, Tizorna, lay nestled somewhere close by as this region was by far the most barren. One afternoon, a boy from this village chose to seek out and destroy the Tizorna and cure the now desolate earth. The boy, Ryca, arrived at the temple of Tori, the Goddess of Warcraft. It was there that he knelt down and prayed. “Oh, wise Tori, do help me slay the dreaded Tizorna and bring beauty back to

BBC FEATURE | 27 this wasteland.” He waited and then, before his eyes, the paved floor wound up, contorted into grotesque shapes before settling on possibly the most beautiful woman he had ever seen. Her steel eyes fixed on him. “Ryca, I, Tori, shall give you what you request.” She pulled from the pavement a slender silver sword that seemed to glow with a blue aura. “This sword shall help you. Finding Tizorna is a different matter. As the labyrinth is not accessible by any mortal, I shall transport you there. But then you will be on your own. Good luck, Ryca.” At once Ryca’s legs gave in. His ears muffled and his vision faded. Then everything went dark. When he regained consciousness, Ryca found himself bound in leather armour, the sword strapped tightly to his waist. Before him lay the enormous labyrinth, the cave roof above peppered with jewels and stalactites hanging like a thousand crystal chandeliers. Ryca, not waiting, ran into the maze. He seemed to search for hours, running into dead ends and going in circles. The walls were fashioned from old stones and boulders. Rats scurried among the corpses of other small rodents, their squeaks piercing the eery silence. He stopped to take a breath. It was then that he heard the low menacing grunts, the gentle thud behind him. To Ryca’s horror he realised… the beast had found him! Ryca turned and gasped. Tizorna resembled a large boar. As muscular as an ox, with long, black leathery wings, clipped and torn at the edges. It had enormous creamy tusks, chipped and stained with blood. It charged. Ryca leapt to the side and unsheathed his sword as Tizorna gave an icy shriek. The sword seemed to have a mind of its own. It pulled Ryca aside from another charge. Ryca turned and looked at Tizorna. This was it. The final battle. Time slowed down. Tizorna charged. Ryca raised his sword. Too late. A long tusk pierced his shirt as he brought down the final decapitating slash. The battle was over. Ryca lay clutching the impaled tusk, blood soaking his tunic. A sudden burst of energy filled Ryca’s body. He felt the tusk dissolve leaving fresh healed skin. ”Ryca,” a voice said. It was Tori’s. “The Gods have rewarded you for your bravery against Tizorna. From here forth, you are Ryca, God of Nature, and you will make earth beautiful again.” Ryca smiled.

RETROSPECT In the not too distant future, our planet will no longer be controlled by the things we can see. Technology is the new king. Instead of smart phones, we now have smart houses. Forget 2D screens, all communication devices are three and sometimes 4D. Governments will be replaced by technological companies all trying to dominate this new cyber world. These power hungry groups will stop at nothing in their attempts to achieve world dominance. One boy will hold the key to keeping his people safe. The world will need him to survive, but can he survive this world? Boys often wonder what their future will look like, and what better way to get them thinking than an action-packed Science Fiction thriller, written by BBC’s very own Timothy Harris, Middle School teacher, Housemaster and now author. The novel, titled Retrospect: The Beginning, is aimed at a young adult audience and includes a number of clever additions to the text such as a cyber-language that the reader can decode for themselves. Following the launch of the title this year, Timothy recently spoke with Years 7 and 9 boys about the inspiration behind the novel and what it takes to have your work published. “I’ve been teaching boys like you for a long time,” Timothy said in his presentation. “I wanted to write something I would have wanted to read as a kid and hopefully a story which you’ll find enjoyable too,” he said. According to Tim a lot of the traits held by the main character Noah – depicted on the cover by BBC Boarder Ben Fenwicke - were not only inspired by his son, but the boys he teaches. “Noah is insightful, witty and at times quite humorous. His portrayal is told as a retrospective look into his attempts to survive the calamity of the ‘new’ world,” he said. “A lot of the traits Noah holds, were based on all of you in the room today. Like Noah, I know how incredibly sensitive and thoughtful all of you can be yet just how courageous you are.” At the end of the presentation, boys were quick to respond with some questions – ‘Where can you purchase the book?’, ‘Is the ending resolved or will we be left hanging?’, ‘How long did it take to write?’ and of course ‘Who is the bad guy?’. “The character relationship web provides a number of twists and turns and it is never completely obvious who is good, who is bad and who is downright wicked,” says Timothy. “Hopefully either way it will keep readers guessing and whilst a fictitious plot, it closely mirrors the predictions of what many perceive to be our future, giving the tale a strong dose of reality.” --Reader review: Retrospect: The Beginning, by Brisbane author Timothy Harris, is an action-packed Science Fiction thriller that will keep readers on the edge of their seats. It is an epic battle of good versus evil set in a dystopian future that is scarily recognisable. The protagonist is tough and cool, yet appealingly vulnerable too. His journey of self-discovery is an adrenaline-junkie’s dream – yet the novel also manages a sensitive exploration of important themes such as friendship, family and the corrupting influence of power. I can hardly wait for the sequel.

Earth was a wasteland no more.



FROM THE COALFACE Spend five minutes with Helen and Annmaree and they’ll quickly have you smiling, and at times, in stitches. As they chat about what it’s like teaching Year 6 boys, rarely do they speak of curriculum but rather the creative ways in which they endeavour to engage boys in their learning. Their role is seldom confined to teacher alone, with the pair navigating a myriad of questions from the wonderful and bizarre to the everyday and all that sits in between. “For a Year 6 teacher, on any given day, the lines between

them out with the least amount of fuss. Just as they come to you

teacher, mentor, mother and friend are blurred. You can start the

for help, you feel just as protective of them, you want to get to the

day with the best of intentions - organised and prepared - and then

bottom of things and you want to send them on their way feeling

one knock on the door can change it all,” says Helen.

good about themselves.

“Mrs Gardener, may I come in to the classroom to finish my

“One of the things I say to my parents is that once they get

homework? Mrs Gardener, can you please help me with my maths?

to school you can’t control what they do or what they say and

Mrs Gardener, do you know where the cross country meeting is?”

sometimes, both their words and their actions will stun and amaze

And then…..

you. They will lift you up and make you realise that your purposeful

“Mrs Gardener, I don’t feel well. Mrs Gardener, I have just come

parenting and powerful teaching has all been worth it and in the

up from football and I haven’t had any breakfast. Mrs Gardener, I

next breath, make you wonder whether they have listened at all.

have just come up from football to get changed and I haven’t got

That’s how it is with boys and that’s how it is with the Year 6 kind

any shorts.

and that’s why we love them so much.

“All of these things do happen over the course of the year and

“As a Year 6 teacher you are always making connections with

most often, they happen between 8.00am and 8.15am, every

the boys to enhance your relationship with individuals and as a

morning of the week.

class. By Term 4, the lines between teacher, mother

“Do they knock on the door? Always. Do they use their manners?

and friend are blurred even further. You’re

Always. Is it always the same boys? Sometimes. Is it ever a

included in their jokes, you crack some

problem? Never.

of their jokes and sadly, you become

“As rocky as the day begins, by the time the roll is being marked,

a part of their jokes, but you don’t

everyone is ‘on the perch’. They know that if there is a problem,

really mind. Before you know it,

chances are I have got it in hand or I am working on it. You know

you are setting them up to take

you’re in a Year 6 class of 25 boys when any creative writing task

the step toward Year 7. You

will produce aliens, space ships, zombies, the fifth apocalypse and

begin to see how much they

droid terrorists. You also know you’re in Year 6 when the prelude to

have grown throughout the

the Natural Disasters writing task includes the explicit statement, no

year and how they have

aliens, no space ships, no terrorists and no zombies…no, not even

changed. There is an air

the zombies that rise up from the cracks of the Earth’s crust… and

of sadness as the term

no, aliens and zombies are not considered natural disasters or even

progresses and you

the cause of them.

realise that your time

“The line between teacher and mother is most often blurred, and from then on, nothing is a secret. "Have you been to the bathroom? Is that your shirt? Is that a clean shirt? Are you wearing deodorant? You need deodorant! Whose shirt is this? Whose socks are these? Whose bag is this and why did you leave it there? You forgot your shorts? “They will come to you for anything and that’s when you know they really trust you. They have faith that you will be able to help


together is limited and you hope that you have been enough."


Every week Annmaree receives a letter from each boy in her class. And every week, she responds. It’s all part of the 40 Book Challenge, a task set by both Annmaree and Helen, to get boys reading. And they’ve been quick to engage, writing letters each week to demonstrate their understanding and at times even critique the piece they’re reading - how it has resonated with them, what they like, what they don’t like. Beyond the reward of seeing boys expand their imaginations and world view, it’s the letters that Annmaree enjoys most. --

Dear Ms MacGinley, I’m still reading Skullduggery and only up to page 210 but I would like to change books as soon as I can. This book didn’t connect with me as much as I would have liked it to. But I know I still have to finish it. There have been so many new characters introduced in the last hundred pages: Mr Bliss, Billy-Ray Sanguine, Valkyrie and Kenspeckle are just a few. Imagine if Skullduggery and Stephanie found new elements of magic that would help take down the Vampires.

Dear Ms MacGinley,

To be honest, I haven’t read much this week, sorry for the short

I am writing to inform you on the wonders of One Piece, a

letter, it will improve next week.

Japanese manga written by Eiichiro Oda. Raise the sails, man the


stations, today we set sail to the Grand Line! The story begins with

Whether it's reading, learning about natural disasters or playing

a boy called Monkey D Luffy who dreams of becoming King of the

a musical instrument, Annmaree believes that knowing even just a

Pirates. But before he gets the chance his life is changed when

little about the boys can go a long way.

he accidentally eats an enchanted devil fruit. This fruit gives him

"I had a very reluctant reader and despite suggesting a range

the ability to stretch like rubber but he loses his ability to swim – a

of books over five months, the reading spark just wasn’t there.

rather big problem for a pirate! The story jumps ten years after this

Reading was still a chore. I found out that this boy has a love of

event when Luffy sets off on his quest to find the

animals, especially ducks. He owns several gorgeous ducks. I came across a copy of Storm Boy, a wonderful Australian classic

One Piece. There is a part in the story where

about the tale of a young boy who rescues three pelican chicks

Chouchou (a dog) jumps up at Moji,

and bonds strongly with one in particular – Mr Percival. Early

an animal trainer who claims he can control any animal, and it bites him. I could imagine my dog, Freddie, jumping up and bitting Moji’s hand; making this connection made me LOL.

one morning, just before football practice, I found this boy sitting outside the bag racks reading Storm Boy. He said he just wanted to find out what happened next and finished the book within a week,” said Annmaree. For Annmaree it’s also about being vulnerable and allowing the boys to step in when help is required. “I’m not known for my artistic ability and when completing our Natural Disaster unit recently the boys could see I was struggling to draw something that vaguely resembled a volcano. One boy asked if he could try drawing one at lunchtime on our sliding doors with writable surfaces. Before I knew it I had at least six boys spending several lunch hours working on their natural disaster drawings. The wall now proudly displays a volcano – complete with labels (more than I would have included); an earthquake highlighting the tectonic plates and a tsunami. It proved a great way for not only the drawers to learn but the other boys in the class were keen to see if they could spot any mistakes or add any missing details.”


30 | BBC FEATURE When a conversation goes off the beaten track, that’s how Housemaster and seasoned educator Paul Setch knows he’s on track. For Paul, this is where the magic takes place and connection occurs. It’s an intuitive approach that Paul says developed naturally over time as he himself learnt, both as a person and a teacher, the value of investing in the relational side of learning. “There was a boy who came to us in Year 7. Even though I was a senior housemaster, his father contacted me to assist his boy who was struggling at the time,” said Paul. “It was a handshake that sealed the connection – we got talking and I started to teach him a special handshake – you know the ones where it starts with a shake and ends with a high five type thing.

"Being in the Middle School he had no real reason to see me, but in the end would go out of his way to say hello. To this day, he still waits behind after every class to thank me for the lesson and to give me that handshake. “I think it’s important to tell boys they can be great. I had a boy who was exploring a trade pathway and came to me one day and said, ‘Sir, I’ve changed my mind, I don’t want to do that anymore, I’d like to become a policeman’. I said, ‘That’s ok mate, that’s great. You’re really personable, level minded and fair – you would make a great policeman.’ He is now exploring a justice pathway.” For Paul, it’s all about time and providing boys with a language to discuss how they are feeling. “Time. That’s the key. You have to invest time to be able to know boys. It could start with a simple question and when you land in a somewhat unusual place, talking about playlists, memes or whatever it might be, that’s when you know you’re in the right spot. “It’s an intense time for young adults in particular and it can be a bit of a mind field. When a boy comes up to you and says, ‘Sir I feel sad’ it’s important to be able to assist him in articulating what that really means. “This can sometimes be as simple as using metaphors to liken it to the situation or feeling they are experiencing. I remember an instance where I used this approach to talk to a boy about a relationship issue he was having. It gave him a language to talk about it in a way which felt comfortable and that’s the most important thing. It’s also enabled us to build our own connection, based on trust, to the point where he’ll often ask for my restaurant recommendation.”

Paul Setch


BBC FEATURE | 31 "I don’t want to be that guy, that stands in front of people and says, 'Right, you can’t do this' and 'Don’t do that'. I try to create opportunities for those who are keen to engage. Then, through osmosis, start to see that behaviour impacting others and hopefully, then behaviours changed,” says Dom. He’s actually talking about his sustainability role at BBC, but it’s a belief that also informs his teaching philosophy. “I love coming to BBC each day, because I’m genuinely inspired by the kids and the staff I work with. I don’t feel that in any way what I’m doing is massive, it’s just a small cog in a big wheel and if I get to have some impact on the boys, alongside other staff, then that is just awesome,” says Dom. “I want to provide opportunities for the boys to flourish. That’s what I love seeing. And watching many of the boys grow into something which is so much more than I ever was at the same age constantly amazes me. I often find myself

thinking, ‘Wow, what are you going to do after your time at BBC’ knowing that many of the boys will have a significant impact in some way.” And for Dom, providing opportunities to flourish is all about identifying ‘spark’. The Social Enterprise program which Dom initiated last year, following a conversation with old boy Zac Fook, is a great example of this in action. “I like to figure out the driver of each student and I don’t think it’s always beneficial for their teacher to pull them to a direction that they’re not intrinsically motivated to get to. It has to be something within them and if they’re showing a spark or an interest and they need some guidance that’s when I try to help. “Outside the classroom, I try to not necessarily tell them what to do but say to them, 'Ok why don’t we try this', or 'Have you thought about this?', or 'Have you met this person' and introduce them to opportunities that, as a young person, they may not have the confidence or the experience to do themselves. “I guess when I originally came up with the Social Enterprise idea with Zac – over a few coffees and a chat - I just wanted to engage really inspiring young old boys to come back to the school to impart their knowledge with our boys but didn’t necessarily know what direction it would take. “When the first workshop was delivered I thought, ‘let’s just give it a go’ not knowing if it would have an impact, but to have in the first year a group of students create a small social enterprise raising awareness of and directing profits to issue of domestic violence, which is not something that was impressed upon them, is pretty amazing. It’s an idea that they have developed themselves and that we’ve encouraged simply through facilitation – and it’s this type of story which reinforces why I feel incredibly lucky each day.” Dom, who is currently completing his research masters in business at QUT investigating the drivers and barriers to change and how this influences large organisations, says his studies have helped him to better understand the boys as well. “It’s allowed me to understand individuals. Why we do, what we do. I’m much more aware of what drives behaviours and how this can play out in a classroom environment. I see my role as a teacher to try to broaden each boy’s understanding of his world so he is able to make informed decisions and expand his own world view.”

Dominic Piacun



Kyle Thompson DEPUTY HEADMASTER Kyle believes that education is everywhere. The obvious is in schools where teachers teach kids, kids teach teachers and staff teach staff. The less obvious at times is the fact that we learn through every dimension of our lives not just from a formal curriculum. Yes, learning involves academics, but also a whole lot more. Learning about life and how to take one’s place in it is just as important. What makes a good teacher? What allows you to teach boys

thing to correct, and the habit was pretty well ingrained. Within

effectively, not just present a curriculum? How as educational

half an hour, together we’d reversed the issue. He learnt to do

leaders, parents, elders in our village do we become equipped

it conventionally and made a significant step forward that day.

in ensuring individuals achieve their best in a dynamic and

Come game day on Saturday he had completely changed his

complex environment?

technique. From that point on, I got serious about education and

Interestingly, at the time of being formally educated at Sydney University in education, Kyle was also lucky enough to be heavily involved in sport. "This sport provided an education to complement my formal education. Spending time playing with, leading and coaching

teaching people to achieve their best.” And while it was a significant turning point, Kyle is the first to admit that this was just one of many revelations in what has been an ongoing evolution. “My job is to help each boy find what he needs to find. I don’t

cricketers taught me people. Knowing people, and at Brisbane

teach curriculum, I teach kids. I didn’t do that early on as a young

Boys’ College, knowing boys makes a good educational theorist,

teacher and my wife laughs at me today because we used to

a great educational practitioner," said Kyle.

argue about this frequently – she works in early childhood and is

So, what started as a mad keen love for all things cricket, having played semi-professionally overseas and coaching

very much of that ilk. “Now everything for me is relational. If there’s no trust, there’s

here in Australia, turned into something quite unexpected, yet

no learning. Emotional intelligence is the biggest thing for me.

exceptional for Kyle. While busy chasing what he thought to

If you take the time to know who it is you’re dealing with, to

be his dream, a career in education was unravelling, almost

understand them and to genuinely share parts of yourself and

intuitively, fuelled by a natural aptitude for bringing out the best

learn more about them - whether it’s a boy, colleague or a

in those around him, his ability to lead and the odd degree or

parent - great things can happen. And when I talk about sharing

two including a teaching degree in Design and Technology and

personal insights, that’s opening up a real vulnerability for me, but

masters in Sports Management.

without the vulnerability you decrease the level of learning and the

So while cricket may have been the rule, education was the game, with the lessons learnt on the field and in the back rooms

level of development that is possible." Kyle’s career in education commenced in Sydney, working for a

greatly informing his approach today with boys, parents and staff.

range of state schools and prior to commencing at BBC in 2008,

It wasn’t until a cricket coaching session one sunny afternoon

at Cranbrook School – an independent day and boarding school

at Waverley Cricket Ground in Sydney during the late 1990s, that everything started to fall into place. “Through my cricket I got involved with coaching kids. I’d

in East Sydney – first as a teacher, followed by sportsmaster. “I loved my time at Cranbrook but when I moved to BBC that’s when I really started to work on the relational nature of education.

been teaching in between but it wasn’t until this point that I

Partly because of how friendly the boys are here. They would

realised I could explain or show kids something in a way which

engage you in a conversation in the playground. They would

could significantly support them in their development. I was also

notice if you’d been to a sporting event and talk to you about it.

coaching adults at the time – from international players through to

There was this real purity of soul – as clichéd as it sounds. They

professionals in finance. Individually tailoring learning experiences

were just really decent young blokes, happy to talk and happy

and catering to different personalities became key functions in

to listen.

what I did. There is an obvious correlation between this and teaching in schools.” “I remember one boy who had a particular technical flaw. He’d

"I have really enjoyed working with our Senior School boys over the last 10 years. We are a values based school and you can see it. It’s the small things – like the old boys who walked through my

been told by a number of coaches that they couldn’t fix it, and

house the other day because they were attending my daughter’s

that was simply the way he would play for the rest of his time.

birthday party. They stopped to speak with me, shook my hand

He bowled off the wrong foot, which to be fair is quite a difficult

and thanked me at the end of the night.


"I also love the fact that young boys think they invented everything. Like they are the first one to think of doing a joke and are genuinely surprised to hear that ‘hang on we did that 30 years ago’ – I quite like that about them. "There are so many success stories that I could tell – along with so many other educators for that matter. But it’s the memories and the emotions that count. Without emotion there is no memory; our emotions are what help us to remember, so in essence there’s also no learning without emotion. This is why our relationships with students is so critical to remembering and learning. "Knowledge is diminishing in value. Everyone can access it in any way they like. It doesn’t mean that there is no value in knowledge – there will always be value - but we can all obtain it more readily. The relational side of teaching is what makes it unique. The interactions between an adult and a kid as they are developing and learning is where the magic is with it. "And as the saying goes, 'It doesn’t matter how good a teacher you are someone is on YouTube teaching it better.' Education isn’t one dimensional and that’s the thing about BBC, each teacher brings something different to their classroom and that’s what makes it so special.”



When asking Housemaster and Drama Teacher Eileen Morgan what she enjoys most about teaching boys she is quick to respond. “I like their energy” – a very apt reply for a drama teacher. “But it’s also what I don’t like about them sometimes,” she laughs. “I love it when you go into a class and it’s loud and to a degree messy, it brings an energy to the classroom and it means they are engaged. The challenge is to harness it in a constructive way.” A skill

another opportunity to learn – the experience is shared. I look at what they are doing and what I’m doing. “I get so nervous for my kids when they perform because I want

Eileen has developed over time, not through old school discipline, but

the best for them. As Dom - our Head of Drama - will attest, I’m

by asking boys questions - and lots of them - enabling every boy to

often a nervous wreck. And I think this is because I see their work

have a voice and by sharing in successes and equally failures. “I have

as a reflection of me also and when things don’t go as well as they

high expectations of my boys, but it’s a continuous and shared circle

had hoped, I take it on board. Because at the end of the day we are

of accountability – whether it’s a success or a failure – and I say that

essentially like a family.

loosely because I don’t believe

“I also live by the same rules that they do. I’m loud, I speak loudly so

there’s any such

my classes are naturally going to be loud, so I couldn’t possibly expect

thing as a failure in a classroom but rather just

anything different of the boys. “I only see my Middle School classes twice a week, so getting to know each boy a little more each time is really important. If I don’t know them, I can’t teach them. At the start of each lesson I ask a question which each boy gets to answer as part of marking the role. In Term 1 some boys might say, ‘I don’t want to answer’ and that’s ok. But as everyone becomes more comfortable it can become quite powerful because each boy gets to have his own moment, particularly if they don’t naturally ask questions all the time. “It’s all about building a relationship, the boys have to trust me and me them. So I let them know if I’m having a bad day and vice versa. I just recently brought a new dog and I showed all of my classes. It’s only a small thing but they need to know who you are, especially in drama because I’m asking them to put themselves out there in a way that they wouldn’t necessarily do in other classes. “I do love teaching drama. It’s really awesome. I love the way we can learn about different cultures and different parts of history. When we look at Australian theatre the boys learn so much about the country without even opening up a history book or doing any ‘googling’. A few years ago we explored a play set in 1967, so the boys learnt about Indigenous rights, the voting referendum and the Vietnam war. At no point are we testing for this. And that’s what I like about drama, it’s all of the subsidiary learning – it’s just developing the back story. They are learning about the world and the characters which make it. And once they’ve learnt about something they can decide what it means to them and translate this into performance. I think that’s pretty amazing.”



BBC ARTS 36 King and country

BBC Theatre production brings to life the Shakespearean tale of Macbeth

37 Wired for creativity

A prelude to our annual Art Show

39 Highland Gathering BBC plays host to the fifth Highland Gathering


Don't stop the music Music at BBC never stops



+ A WORD FROM THE CAST "People ask me why I act. Often, I tell them what they expect to hear: I love it. More specifically, however, the reason I act is, I think, for the journey – and this production of Macbeth has been just that. I have performed with a cast I am unlikely to easily forget, been directed by such intricate, passionate people and have experienced Shakespeare in a totally new way. The Scottish play was a wonderful way to round off my theatrical undertakings at BBC and has left me with many precious memories.”

Alexander Voltz, Year 12 "Is it fun? Oh yes! Is it hard? It definitely is! Would I change anything if I could? Absolutely not!”

Lachlan Martin, Year 12 "The show's success was a reflection of


Recent history has taught us that obtaining power and maintaining power are very different things in political life. Close friends and allies can, overnight, become rivals, threats and usurpers.

the talent and calibre prevalent in the wider BBC community, and the dedication of all those involved. An honour to be a part of."

James Heading, Year 11 "Macbeth; I will never forget the new people I met, the things I've learned, and all the lines. Being in Macbeth, and being able to play the lead, is an experience I'll never forget. Thank you to everyone who came and supported us.”

According to Master in Charge of Theatre,

“However, BBC students, staff and parents

Catherine Heffernan, forget Canberra or

instead made this process an incredibly

House of Cards, the tragedy of Macbeth

exicting and energising one and joining this

is the original political thriller – a story of

community for the first time has been an

ambition, love and witchcraft brought to life

astonishing experience,” she said, having

by the cast and crew of this year’s Senior

commenced her role at BBC at the start of

Theatre production.

this year.

Returning as conquering heroes in a bitter

“The students were warm, welcoming

civil war, Macbeth and Banquo encounter

and incredibly receptive. They tackled the

supernatural creatures who promise them

challenges of Shakespeare with enthusiasm

everything their hearts could desire – fame,

and good humour, traits that ultimately

fortune and the crown. When both are

enabled the show to flourish.

overlooked by the current king, murder and mayhem ensue. “Twenty one rehearsals from audition to

“It was so rewarding to see them shine on stage and to see the audience engage with their amazing talent. It was fantastic to work

opening night. For such a short intensive

alongside all of the boys and also students

production period, themes of murder and

from All Hallows' School, St Aidan’s Anglican

mayhem may initially have seemed apt,” said

Girls' School and the Queensland Academy


of Creative Industries.”

Alastair Moore, Year 11 "The 2016 Production of Macbeth was a challenge, I entered it wide-eyed and prepared – however with increasing pressures and workloads it seemed more and more impossible by the hour. However just like every other production I have been in, the sense of accomplishment, that we achieved something, that people actually came and enjoyed the show, made it completely worthwhile. So coming out on the other side of three wonderful nights of Shakespeare I recommend the Senior Production to anyone who has the guts to stand up on stage and give it their all – it’s an experience you'll never forget.”

Nicholas James, Year 11


The way of the artist Navigating a path through time and space The educational value of art is more apparent than ever; not just because it promotes creativity and invention, but because it contributes to the broader curriculum goals, particularly literacy. Visual literacy engenders confidence as students find new ways to express themselves and to respond to the diverse nature of contemporary life. For these very reasons, the BBC Art Show has become part of the school’s ongoing cultural calendar. It’s an opportunity to bring the community

“There is always an element of self discovery as boys progress through the years as art students, and a level of enthusiasm and energy that is shared within our collaborative creative environment - it is not your typical classroom!” ADRIAN HUNTER, HEAD OF DEPARTMENT

together to celebrate the arts and most importantly to view the high quality

"The Visual Arts as a subject is an ever evolving curriculum reactive to, and reflective of, the

of work being produced by visual art

greater art world. My experimentation and development as an educator inspires my students


to experiment and learn and in turn has definitely influenced my own art practice. I take great

In the lead up to this year’s show, The

pleasure in watching students express their ideas creatively and without limitation in a safe space

Way of the Artist – Navigating a Path

such as the Visual Art classroom. It is an honour both personally and professionally to be involved

Through Time and Space, we sat down

in the development of our students and a joy to see the boys grow creatively as they transition on

with those at the forefront of BBC’s Visual

from Middle School and into Senior." MAIA GREEN, MIDDLE SCHOOL COORDINATOR

Arts program and a number of boys to find out what inspires them most.


"I am always inspired by the boys’ intuitiveness and sensitivity in response to artists’ works shared. Mostly though, I am inspired by the way in which they have the honesty and courage to express themselves in the visual mode as individuals who have endless ideas, thoughts and experiences they so want to share." KIM MURRAY, JUNIOR SCHOOL ART TEACHER



Charlie McDonald (Year 9): I love being a part of the art program because of the freedom; you will have a task set but you don’t have to follow any strict rules. An example of this could be the skateboard decks that the Year 9 classes have been working on. We were given a theme for our board and the rest was up to you. For instance you could paint your design, draw on the paint with paint pens, use spray paint, make a collage or explore many other options. Doing art is very fun and takes the stress of school away. I would highly suggest taking part in it yourself.


Bruce Campbell (Year 6): How you can create artworks and the benefit of BBC having everything at your fingertips. This term Year 6 have been working on a piece based on artists Madeleine Kelly and Ai Weiwei. We have used empty milk bottles to make our pieces and we used lego. I learnt that rubbish can be made into something amazing and different from what you would normally expect.

Hamish Gomersall (Year 12): Art at BBC has allowed me to develop one of my passions - uncovering and representing real world issues using colour and energy. These artworks aim to represent the struggles for refugees in Australia specifically for the children. I love bold colour and have tried to use this to provoke an emotional response from the viewer that challenges them to review the issue more deeply.


HIGHLAND GATHERING Brisbane Boys’ College played host to the fifth BBC Highland Gathering in mid-March, as we welcomed bands and solo pipers and drummers from Queensland and northern New South Wales to what is the first competition of the Queensland Pipe Band season. The event took place on Miskin Oval, which included the Thistle Highland Dancers, more than 100 solo pipers and drummers, and 10 pipe bands. Following the success of the 2014 Scotland Tour, the band travelled to Scotland in June to perform at Edinburgh Castle and Stirling Castle, as well as compete at the European Pipe Band Championships where they placed seventh. You can look forward to reading all about the 2016 Scotland Tour in the next edition of Collegian.

+ CROSS CURRICULAR CULTURAL IMMERSION Earlier this year, Year 8 SOSE, Drama and Visual Art students, shared in a cross curricular trip to the Asia Pacific Triennial of Contemporary Art. The group explored six exhibits representing urban, political and cultural issues within painting, projection video art and sculpture. This learning was then transferred to the classroom with all three class groups interpreting the exhibits as part of their course.



+ ROCKING IT BBC’s Rock School continues to grow, with the music studio receiving a revamp earlier this year, followed by the Rockfest Concert in March and the Indie Rock Concert in June. Both performances highlighted the talents of the boys, who continue to impress audiences with their songwriting and performance skills. Staff have also engaged with the program with Director of Professional Learning, Sean Riordan performing a duet with BBC’s Director of Rock Bands and artist Dan Pratt at Rockfest. More recently Year 9 boys Sam Braithwaite, Rodrigo Madrigal, Alex Hill, Jonathon Vautin and Toby Hobart, better known as Recall, performed an original piece - with incredible authencity and tone.

Don’t stop the music From Brisbane to Scotland, the first six months of 2016 have proven very busy for our musicians, with numerous ensembles taking part in a variety of concerts, College functions, community events and competitions. Following performances at two school functions, just four weeks into the school year, BBC’s Twilight Concert officially kicked off the musical season showcasing the College’s senior ensembles in College Hall. Our Scottish heritage came to the fore in March as BBC hosted the Highland Gathering on Miskin Oval. The day was an exciting and

and Blazing Bands Concerts a week later. The month of May also brought a number of wonderful individual

entertaining competition for all involved and BBC performed particularly

performances at the Middle and Senior School Solo Competition. Our

well. The BBC Pipe Band No. 1 placed second in the Juvenile division,

youngest musicians were also able to display their talent by performing

third in the Grade 4 division and won the Best Drum Corps category,

at the Junior School’s classroom instrumental music concert in June.

while the BBC Pipe Band No 2 placed third in the Juvenile division.

For some students, it was their first ever concert performance.

Pipe Major Angus Briggs was presented the Juvenile prize from BBC Chairman, Jacqueline McPherson. The Pipe Band continues to play an integral role in the life of the

Semester 1 has also been a time for continued improvement and learning. Our Collegians took part in UQ School of Music’s performance of Walton’s Belshazzar’s Feast, while our College Strings joined the

school, having already performed at a variety of assemblies, sporting

Queensland Youth Orchestra No 3 for a combined performance. BBC

events, music concerts, church services, competitions in Queensland,

played host to the inaugural Let’s Talk Music forum, featuring none

New South Wales and Scotland, various community engagements and,

other than Mr Richard Gill AO - one of Australia's pre-eminent and most

of course, ANZAC Day, including five local services as well as the main

admired conductors and internationally respected as a music educator.

Brisbane City Dawn Service and March.

Mr Gill delivered a keynote on How can we be an advocate for Music

May was a very busy month; our percussion ensembles combined

and the Arts? The presentation was followed by a discussion between

with our sister school Somerville House for a special concert, our Wind

Mr Richard Gill AO, Professor Scott Harrison (Director of Queensland

Ensemble and Concert Band joined Brisbane Girls Grammar School at

Conservatorium of Music – Griffith University) and Mr John Kotzas (CEO

a concert, and selected BBC students later joined their GPS peers at a

of QPAC).

Music Showcase Concert and Workshop at QPAC. The beautiful tones

So as we wrap up the first half of the year in music, we look forward

of the Colla Voce resounded in the Chapel of St Andrew for the annual

to what will be an outstanding showcase of BBC’s premier musicians at

Mother’s Day Service, while our string and band musicians displayed

Explore! A Grand Concert in August.

wonderful technique and musicality in College Hall for the Tutti Strings


BBC SPORTS 42 Making a big splash Success in the pool

43 With heart and perseverance Marking 100 years of rowing at BBC

44 Captured - through the lens

A sporting pictorial of BBC boys displaying their talents outside the classroom

47 Jack be quick

Jack McGrath selected to play for the Australian Under 15 Boys’ Futsal team


Order on the court

BBC Tenns win their fourth consecutive GPS Tennis premiership




Good things come in threes and after a mammoth effort

by our boys at the GPS Swimming Championships, Brisbane Boys’ College placed third for the third year in a row. Our swimmers enjoyed strong results, including some new GPS records, and were cheered on by the dynamic Spirit Committee, Prefects and Seniors from the stands at Chandler. BBC supporters formed a guard of honour with our iconic pipe band at the College earlier in the day to inspire our swimmers before they travelled to Sleeman Sports Complex. Success continued in the pool, with the College fielding nine teams throughout the Water Polo season in Term 2, with six teams making the finals. Congratulations to the First and Year 7 teams which defeated Churchie, and our 9A and 9B teams which defeated Brisbane State High School on a Friday evening grand final in June. Of the four divisional premierships BBC won, three of our teams remained undefeated for the season; our 9As, 9Bs and Year 7 team.




CELEBRATING 100 YEARS . 1916-2016

With heart and perseverance


They say that when you feel you can no longer row with your legs, start rowing with your heart. With 2016 marking 100 years of rowing at

The College’s future success in rowing

Brisbane Boys’ College, it’s safe to say that

was cemented, with our youngest crews also

rowing is at the heart of BBC sporting history.

dominating the water in March at the BBC

As their legs started to numb and their lungs started to burn, our First VIII executed

Centenary Regatta in the penultimate week of the season.

a perfect race achieving a historic win in the

In their first full season of racing our Year

inaugural Schoolboy Sprint Championships,

9 crews’ experience culminated in the Junior

over 500m, to become National Champions on

Head of the River where the boys won the day,

the Sydney Olympic Course at the Australian

claiming three championship wins.

Open Schools Rowing Championships in Penrith earlier this year.

It was a very close Junior Head of the River this year with only the smallest of margins

Following their win in the sprint event the

between the schools - Brisbane Grammar

previous day, the boys raced in the Australian

School was only a point behind BBC and

Eights Schoolboy Championship event, over

Churchie a further two points behind.

2000m, to claim fourth behind Shore School

The Year 8s also enjoyed their first racing

(NSW), St Joseph’s College (NSW) and Scotch

experience on a buoyed course, winning many

College (VIC).

races with all bar one BBC crew ending up on

The boys were just 3.68 seconds behind the winner, only 0.32 seconds off a podium

the podium. The A.W. Rudd, launched onto the water in

position, and overturned the previous

1958 and retired in 1973, was unveiled in its

weekend’s result at the Head of the River by

fully restored glory on the day with many old

running Nudgee College down in the last 500m

boys in attendance.

of the race in a fantastic display of Australian Schoolboy rowing in Sydney. This is the first time a BBC crew has won an Eights event at the nationals since the College’s 1993 First VIII, which also won at the Henley Royal Regatta and the Head of the

The BBC boys sense of camaraderie, pride in each other, and satisfaction in performing the process perfectly was clear for all to see across the entire season.

+ 100 YEARS OF ROWING Rowing has become synonymous with BBC, its history filled with iconic moments and milestones. As our boys readied themselves for this year's ultimate race, it was an opportune time to reflect on those who have gone before them and anticipate the next 100 years which lie ahead as the BBC Rowing story continues. A special edition of the BBC Regatta program was created this year in honour of centenary celebrations. To read the full edition, visit

River the same year.





Outside of the classroom, our boys continue to pursue their interests with strength, character and commitment. Take a look through the lens at some of their moments – though not always great, they are special points in time, where the world will always be their playground.















ORDER ON THE COURT Brisbane Boys’ College has once again smashed it out of the park taking out the GPS Tennis Premiership for the fourth consecutive year and remaining undefeated all season. In fact, the College had 11 teams which remained undefeated throughout the Tennis season including the 5A, 5B, 6C, 9A, 9B, 9C, 10A, 11A, Fourth IV, Third IV, First IV teams. Another 10 BBC teams placed second including the 6A, 6B, 7A, 8B, 8D, 9D, 10B, 10C, 10D and Second IV teams. A team above all, and above all a team. Special mention goes to Captain of Tennis, Colby Norman and the First IV players - Casey Edwards, Bryn Nahrung, Dane Sweeny - for playing their best match of the season on the most important day, as they faced a typically strong Brisbane Grammar School. The doubles combinations of Edwards/Sweeny and Nahrung/Norman worked to the College’s advantage and resulted in some fantastic plays for the spectators.


JACK BE QUICK! In his chosen sport, Jack McGrath needs to think quick and play even quicker. Futsal is a game played by millions around the world, but only mastered by a few. From the outside looking in, the indoor version of the beautiful game

says as he outlines his week. Jack also remains dedicated to his school sporting commitments as

seems a much less demanding variety

a player for the Football First XI, a runner in the 100m, 200m, 400m and

than its turf-based cousin. However,

800m on the track, and a member of the BBC Cross Country team.

these assumptions are wrong. With only

“[Term 2] was pretty hard because I had training every day and a

four outfield players plus a goalkeeper,

game on Saturday and on Sunday. Monday and Wednesday was First

everyone is a striker, everyone is a

XI training, plus an hour of revision of study on those nights; Club Futsal

defender, and as such, all physical

training on Tuesdays and Thursdays in Ipswich; Friday was a GPS Cross

responsibilities are largely shared.

Country meet; Saturday a BBC Football game; Sunday a Club Football

“The person in the centre is a pivot with ever-changing strategy; going into

game; and Sunday afternoon was futsal or study.” But Jack is not alone in his pursuit to be a professional Futsal or

attack you go to a diamond, whilst

Football player – instead he is supported by BBC, in particular his Flynn

defence is a box," said Jack.

Housemaster, Peter Wilson.

"The strategic nature of the game requires you to look forward and

“Mr Wilson meets with me to make sure I continue to improve my

see the options open to you as a team; it certainly gives me more vision

grades and develop some goals for the year. From study, to

when I’m playing football,” the Year 10 student explains.

co-curricular, to outside of school, I feel he’s always there,” Jack

Jack has been playing Futsal for just over five years and was recently selected to play for the Australian Under 15 Boys’ Futsal team in November this year, when he will tour Brazil. He competed for Queensland at the National Futsal Championships

remarked as he spoke of his Housemaster. Career-wise, the second generation BBC boy is keeping his options open, looking at an Industrial Design pathway. “ITS, Graphics and Design Tech are where I excel in school, so I am

earlier this year in Penrith, and it was there that Jack was selected to

combining those strengths of mine to follow a career path in Industrial

play for Australia. Of the 17 people selected for the national team, 13


are from Brisbane alone.

“I’m also undertaking a Certificate III in Personal Training where I

Despite many of them hailing from the maroon state, the national

recently took the whole Year 10 PE class for Futsal. It was fun! I ran a

side will only have one week of training together before two weeks of

few drills and then they played a game – in fact, one of the boys who

tournaments in Rio and Sao Paulo. Yet Jack doesn’t seem too fazed by

plays rugby showed a lot of skill and potential, that I didn’t realise he

this, given his own busy preparation for the sport.

had,” Jack said.

“I play the Club Futsal with typically members of the State team, on a

But it is Jack’s very own potential that seems unlimited at the

Thursday night at Oxley, and I usually have training on a Sunday. When

moment. Whether his future holds Futsal or Industrial Design, one thing

the Brisbane Futsal League starts, I will have games on a Saturday too.

is for sure; from Brisbane to Brazil, Jack McGrath has the right attitude

The rest of the nights are free for study and homework,” Jack calmly

and commitment to take on the world.






51 A handshake, a high five or the lost art of the man hug? How we connect and communicate

51 Strength, talent and charecter

Why beliefs, behaviours and attitudes matter when it comes to success and happiness at school

53 Get connected

Putting parents in touch with resources


Social and emotional learning A KidsMatter Resource which provides advice on how to help children build their emotional intelligence



SOCIAL AND EMOTIONAL LEARNING At BBC we recognise the importance of developing the emotional intelligence of our boys with Junior School students participating in timetabled Social and Emotional Learning lessons each week. The following KidsMatter resource provides further insight into how this can be supported at home. Social and emotional learning is about learning how to manage feelings, manage friendships and solve problems. These are essential life skills that support wellbeing and positive mental health. Social and emotional skills promote children’s ability to cope with difficulties and help to prevent mental health problems. Children who have developed social and emotional skills find it easier to manage themselves, relate to others, resolve conflict, and feel positive about themselves and the world around them.



KIDSMATTER RESOURCE KidsMatter emphasises teaching social and emotional learning as a way of promoting children’s mental health. Social and emotional learning provides practical skills that all children can learn and apply to everyday situations. Learning skills such as self-awareness, effective communication and conflict resolution can also help to prevent the development of mental health difficulties in children who might otherwise be vulnerable. In this way teaching children social and emotional skills helps to promote resilience – the capacity to cope and stay healthy in spite of the negative things that happen through life.

WHAT DOES SOCIAL AND EMOTIONAL LEARNING HAVE TO DO WITH LEARNING? Research has shown that children’s learning is influenced by a range of social and emotional factors. How well children do at school is affected by things such as: •

How confident children feel about their abilities.

How effectively they are able to manage their own behaviour.

How well they can concentrate and organise themselves.

How effectively they can solve problems.

How positively they are able to get on with school staff and with peers.

How effectively they take into account others’ needs.

How well they can understand and accept responsibilities.

KEYS TO SUPPORTING SOCIAL AND EMOTIONAL SKILLS DEVELOPMENT It’s important to recognise that social and emotional skills develop

ENCOURAGE DISCUSSION OF FEELINGS Encourage children to talk about how they are feeling. Listen with empathy so they feel understood. Help them see that feelings are normal and that all feelings are okay, it is important to understand them, and that understanding and talking about feelings helps you to manage them.

SUPPORT CHILDREN’S CONFIDENCE Help children identify and develop their strengths by encouraging them to have a go at things and find activities they enjoy. Praise their efforts, celebrate their successes and encourage them to keep trying and learning.

PROVIDE OPPORTUNITIES TO PLAY WITH OTHERS Playing with other children provides practice in important social skills such as sharing, taking turns and cooperation. Help children develop their skills by praising their appropriate play behaviour, for example: “I noticed how nicely you shared your toys. That made it fun for both of you.”

ENCOURAGE CREATIVE PROBLEM-SOLVING Asking questions that help children think of alternative solutions supports their thinking and problem-solving skills. When problems arise you can explore them together by asking questions, such as: “What could you do about that?” or “What do you think might happen if you try

over time, and that they may develop differently for different children.


Parents and carers and schools working together to help children


develop social and emotional skills can really make a positive difference for children’s mental health. Key points •

Get involved – find out about the social and emotional learning program your child’s school is using. Learn the language and basics and look for opportunities to apply them at home.

Talk about feelings – help children explore theirs.

Be a model – use the skills yourself and show children how they work.

Parents and carers don’t have to be perfect; showing them you can make a mistake and learn from it can be really helpful too.

Be a guide – turn difficulties into learning opportunities.

Acknowledge and appreciate – provide explicit feedback and praise.

Show children how to confidently and respectfully communicate their thoughts, feelings and needs to others in an assertive way, for example: “I really don’t want to play that game. It’s too dangerous. Let’s play a different game instead.”



I was interested to note recently that there was a school in Victoria, a primary school, that has banned the hug. My initial reaction was: how extraordinary! A place that cares for students has banned a way in which care, concern, and even praise and connection can occur. This again caused me to reflect on my own practices, at home and at work, in regards to the kids I engage with. In an environment that is becoming increasingly ‘virtual’ surely we need to continue to value real interactions? At the end of Term 1 the BBC staff had the pleasure of being addressed by an expert in boys’ education, Mr Clark Wight. Part of his presentation talked about the importance of touch in the context of connection, belonging and communicating. Even when writing about this ‘touch’ or ‘connection’, I find myself constantly reflecting on how the words might be portrayed. That in itself saddens me a great deal. Schools in general, and indeed all of society, have all too often been swept up in the realm of political correctness or fear of persecution. Sometimes justifiably and sometimes at the expense of some very powerful and good behaviours that help our world to be a better place. We discuss with our boys the importance of a good handshake and the fact that it is more than just a greeting. Often this is our first chance to connect and communicate with someone. It is also a way of showing appreciation, congratulations and reconnection with old friends. That extended moment, regardless of context, is very powerful and important to many of our relationships. When one considers the ‘high five’ or the ‘fist pump’ it is easy to say these are suitable substitutions. Really? Without denigrating these gestures – they have their place too, I would argue that they are just not the same as a meaningful handshake, a hand on the shoulder, or even dare I say it, a man hug. As a man and as an educator, the highlight for me recently was seeing past student, Dane Gagai, at the end of the Year 12 Formal at the Sofitel. Apart from the amazing conversation we had, this 24 year old league player and old boy hugged myself and another staff member. An amazing gesture and more meaningful than words. Worth considering I think... Now I am not advocating a hug fest begins at BBC. Not at all. However, I believe we must ensure we are not the generation that creates a generation unable to connect in this very special way. It’s a reminder to me, and hopefully others, to go home tonight and hug my wife and daughters. I think that would say far more than ‘Hi, I’m home.’ And it’s a reminder that a handshake or a pat on the back are very powerful tools in developing young men.

Strength, Talent and Character

Michele Juratowitch is Director of Clearing Skies, providing: counselling; advocacy in schools; a range of seminars for gifted students and for parents; professional development and consultancy in schools. Michele is co-author of Make a Twist: Curriculum Differentiation for Gifted Students and was awarded a Churchill Fellowship to investigate interventions and provisions for gifted students.

Thomas Likona wrote about the “habits of mind, habits of heart and habits of action” in developing the character of men. Ancient Greeks and Romans stressed the importance of good habit formation; modern authors have written books and programs about habits; recent neuroscience research has emphasised the role of habits in learning and developing neural pathways. It is essential to focus upon boys’ habits and strengths, including physical strength, the need for regular physical exercise to maintain physical fitness and psychological wellbeing. Intellectual strengths can be developed through the establishment of cognitive habits. Arthur Costa and Bena Kallick’s Habits of Mind program, already adopted by the College, is an excellent program for developing positive habits of thought and behaviour. Habits of thinking can also include optimism or pessimism. The latter negatively impacts upon mood, achievement, relationships and health while optimism contributes to resilience and overcoming adversities. Patterns of thought also influence belief in one’s ability. An individual’s beliefs, attitudes and behaviours determine the level of effort and persistence as well as a student’s inclination to seek out or avoid challenges that build further skills. Parents have a critical role in introducing and reinforcing positive habits. Patterns of parenting are also important. When parents foster their sons’ interests, affinities, strengths, gifts, talents and passions, they encourage the development of a unique individual who is excited about learning and pursuing deep interests. Parents who focus upon developing boys’ patterns of thought, behaviour, character and values will help their sons learn how to overcome adversities and become happy, healthy, confident, talented young men. Boys who are ahead of other students in terms of their cognitive and learning abilities tend to be advanced in their level of social and emotional maturity as well, although this area may not be quite as advanced as their intellectual ability. There is frequently a discrepancy between intellectual and physical capabilities, especially among younger students who are still developing physical capabilities. Andrew Mullins, author of Parenting for Character, points out that “virtue” is a word that derives from the Latin word “virtus”, meaning “strength” and is, in turn, based upon the word “vir”, meaning “man”. If we aim to raise intelligent young men who are strong in mind and body, we must also focus upon the development of virtuous character and healthy, positive habits. This is not to suggest that boys should always be perfect or angelic in their behaviour. Their thoughts, intentions and behaviour should be based upon an awareness of the impact that they can have upon others and should seek to have a positive effect on friends, family and upon achieving their own life goals. Guidance is necessary if boys are


52 | INSIGHT to develop virtuous character and as adults, use their abilities to benefit others. A number of research studies have

support early indicators of ability. Parents

for individuals who tried to maintain an

who showed interest in a child’s emerging

appropriate balance.

interests; who were intensely involved in the

Characteristics such as intrinsic motivation

demonstrated that parents who support

early development of abilities and talents

and an ability to establish goals were identified

the development of their children’s talents

and showed enthusiastic support nurtured

among these students. Individuals and their

have several characteristics in common. The

their child’s talents. The parenting a boy

family environments were described as

parents of young people who grew up to be

receives makes an enormous difference to the

“autotelic”, referring to the ability to locate

highly successful in their careers placed strong

successful development of talented

sources of stimulation to maintain interest and

emphasis on trying to do one’s best, working

young men.

a heightened level of challenge. By maintaining

hard, spending one’s time constructively,

In a major study of talent development in

interest, involvement and satisfaction in

achieving one’s potential and striving for

teenagers, Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi, Samuel

activities, students were able to establish

excellence. They emphasised the importance

Whalen (both at the University of Chicago)

and achieve short and longer term goals.

of life-long learning, study, school and an

and Kevin Rathunde (University of Utah)

Basically, they enjoyed the journey as well as

ongoing education. These parents taught

identified a number of influential factors. The

the destination.

respect for individuality and tolerance for the

researchers explained these in their book

points of view of others.

Talented Teenagers. Teenagers who developed

students were found to be integrating and

their abilities were found to have personalities

differentiating. There was strong cohesion,

identify and develop passions. They valued

that were open to new experiences. They

support and interaction within the family but

the child’s talents, even if this was outside of

demonstrated an ability to sustain current

individuals were encouraged and challenged

their own interests; encouraged the child to

interests while also expanding their interests.

to identify their own interests and abilities.

develop an intrinsic motivation to achieve and

This involved balance and hard work, but

School environments of teenagers who

to persist with difficulties. An emphasis upon

the talented teens used their intelligence to

developed their talents provided a context in

the development of values was accompanied

establish efficient habits and identify effective

which students felt supported and stimulated.

by an emphasis upon development of one’s

ways to utilise the time they had available.

In home as well as school environments,

Parents encouraged their child to explore,

self. Parents whose children succeeded in life

Home environments of high achieving

There was time spent alone and with

research established that the combination of

urged their child to develop self-awareness,

families; time spent with friends tended to

nurture and challenge appeared to be critical.

self-motivation, self-management and

be productive. They were often engaged

One without the other was not successful;

self-discipline. The development of healthy

with friends in activities, such as study or

both were needed and they must be balanced

relationships – with self, peers and family

hobby groups, that were active, challenging,

in order to create the optimal environment for

members – was also encouraged.

built skills and were related to their talents.

talent development.

It is important

Described as modulating and economizing

for parents to

attention, talented teenagers diverted more of

need for individuals, families and schools to

their focus and energy into the development

locate and maintain an appropriate balance

of talent. None of this is easy to do and there

between these processes – led the authors to

recognise and

was often a feeling of ‘tension’

The identification of this dynamic – the

refer to this as the complex dynamic of talent development. Finding the optimal balance of these experiences and processes requires monitoring, reflection and readjustment when required. Parents’ ability to locate an optimal balance improves the complex dynamic of talent development.


Get Connected Great books for boys

With a strong focus on boys and books in this edition of Collegian, BBC’s Head of Information Services and Teacher Librarian Jennifer King shares her review on The Boy at the Top of the Mountain as well as her top picks for Middle School boys.

01 03

02 04

01 The Boy at the Top of the Mountain John Boyne

One could argue that BBC should receive a percentage of the very versatile John Boyne’s profits, as the school has now placed two of his books on the English booklist – The Terrible Thing That Happened to Barnaby Brocket (Year 7) and The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas (Year 9)! And now his most recent book The Boy at The Top of the Mountain could also easily be a text set for study. It is another brilliant children’s novel set in Nazi Germany, where seven year old boy Pierot finds himself in a large mountain retreat where the staff are terrified of the approach of ‘the master’. Just as older readers of The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas could see the terrible, inevitable consequences of the boys’ friendship, in this novel more mature readers soon realise that the house in question is Hitler’s Berghof or Eagle’s Nest in Bavaria, and the story takes a dark turn. Lonely and isolated from the rest of the world, Pierot becomes by the age of 15 a pet of the Nazi regime. We witness the charismatic and unforgiving influence of father-figure Hitler on the growing mind of a young boy, as the old Pierot slowly slips away and is subsumed by a new, arrogant, entitled young man called Pieter. The tale ultimately involves a chilling realisation by Pierot that his story was one of ‘… a boy who had started out with love and decency in his heart but found himself corrupted by power’. This is revealed as the novel delves into the intoxicating lure of unquestioning and unrestrained authority for a young mind (see the effectiveness of the Hitler Youth organisation), and the deep regrets that are the lifetime consequence of not staying true to oneself. Much to ponder…

02 Big Nate series Lincoln Peirce

Written in comic-book fashion which many of the more reluctant readers love, the stories revolve around Nate, an energetic and rebellious middle schooler whose shenanigans are always landing him and his friends in hot water.

03 The 13-Storey Treehouse series Andy Griffiths

An Australian winner. Who wouldn't want to live in a treehouse? Especially a 13-storey treehouse that has a bowling alley, a see-through swimming pool, a tank full of sharks, a library full of comics, a secret underground laboratory, a games room, self-making beds, vines you can swing on, a vegetable vaporiser and a marshmallow machine that follows you around and automatically shoots your favourite flavoured marshmallows into your mouth whenever it discerns you're hungry. Two new characters - Andy and Terry - live here, make books together, and have a series of completely nutty adventures.




04 The Boy in the Dress David Walliams

A timeless and hilarious fable crammed with unique characters only Walliams could have thought up. The story is about what happens when an ordinary boy does something extraordinary - and the way that people, even the petty and cruel, can surprise you in the end. Quentin Blake, Britain's most iconic illustrator, famed for his collaboration with Roald Dahl was the illustrator, interspersing his notoriously witty black and white pencil drawings.

05 Middle School: The Worst Years of My Life series James Paterson

Rafe Kane has enough problems at home without throwing his first year of middle school into the mix. Luckily, he's got an ace plan for the best year ever, if he can pull it off. With his best friend Leonardo the Silent awarding him points, Rafe tries to break every rule in his school's oppressive Code of Conduct. But when Rafe's game starts to catch up with him, he'll have to decide if winning is all that matters, or if he's finally ready to face the rules, bullies, and truths he's been avoiding.

06 Percy Jackson and the Olympians series Rick Riordan

In the mood for monsters and mythological heroes? Look no further than Rick Riordan's fun, fast-paced Percy Jackson series, which follows the adventures of young demigod (half mortal, half Greek god) Percy and his friends Annabeth and Grover. The story continues in the Heroes of Olympus and Trials of Apollo spin-off series. Rick Riordan also wrote ‘The 39 Clues’ series, which is popular as well.

07 Wonder R.J. Palacio

A funny, sweet and incredibly moving story of Auggie Pullman. Auggie wants to be an ordinary ten-year-old, but he is far from ordinary. Born with a terrible facial deformity, this shy, bright ten-year-old has been homeschooled by his parents for his whole life, in an attempt to protect him from the stares and cruelty of the outside world. Now, for the first time, Auggie is being sent to a real school - and he's dreading it. Auggie sees himself as just an ordinary kid and all he wants is to be accepted. But can he convince his new classmates that he's just like them, underneath it all? A wonderful book.


We know that when schools and parents work together, learning outcomes are strengthened. This year, BBC's Parent and Friends' Association has hosted two parent forums - an initiative design to assist parents in navigating their son's school journey and the world of parenthood. If you were unable to attend, or would like to read the associated resources from each forum, visit the News and Events page on BBC's websites and look for 'Growth Mindset' and 'Homework and Study' to find out more.





54 Strengthening the tie A message from OCA President, Chris Hartley

54 A message from the Alumni Office

A message from Director of Alumni and Community, Jarrod Turner

58 Where are they now

Find out more about life beyond the gates for two old collegians

60 A man for all sporting seasons

With Rio in sight we catch up with BBC Old Boy and Chairman of the Australian Sports Commission, John Wylie


A challenge of extremes Fook goes desert





STRENGTHENING THE TIE As it is for the current students of BBC, life around the campus has been very busy for the Old Collegians’ Association in 2016. For all intents and purposes, the OCA is about engaging with

Last year was the inaugural Long Lunch and if we can repeat

the alumni so it makes sense to provide as many opportunities

the buoyant atmosphere of the large 150 plus turn-out at the

as possible to foster those connections. Upon quick reflection of

Triffid, then this year’s lunch is one surely not to be missed.

the OCA calendar, the number of programs and events we have already enjoyed highlights exactly these opportunities we offer.

Those old boys needing a run around can get down to the Old Boys’ TRL competition (Touch Rugby League) or BBC Golf Day

At present I have had the pleasure of catching up with a great

(September and October respectively) while the more ‘matured’

number of old collegians at the Centenary of Rowing, the Vintage

gents can reconnect at the Vintage Collegians’ Sunshine Coast

Collegians’ Toowoomba lunch and the OCA’s Melbourne cohort


reunion. The Centenary of Rowing in particular is worth mentioning, as more than 120 old boys celebrated the traditions and sustained success that BBC’s rowing fraternity have enjoyed for decades. Many a tale was told (no doubt the memory allowing some to be taller than others) but the laughter and vibrant spirit suggested a night befitting the occasion. Looking forward, the second half of the year promises to be even bigger with 10 year reunions, Old Boys’ Weekend and the

Behind the scenes, the OCA Executive has been busy planning a number of new initiatives it hopes to launch over the next 12 months. We are always conscious of evolving the OCA program and improving the way old boys can connect so keep an ear open for some exciting announcements. In the meantime, find some time to attend one of the aforementioned events and catch up with your old mates to regale some great memories and forge new ones.

Long Lunch taking place in August.



UPCOMING OCA EVENTS BBC LONG LUNCH Friday 12 August REUNIONS - 06, 96, 86, 76, 66, 56 Friday 26 August OLD BOYS’ DAY AND POST-MATCH EVENT Saturday 27 August 1961 REUNION Friday 16 September



A MESSAGE FROM THE ALUMNI OFFICE Since 1920, the Alumni Office has been a hive of activity for all things OCA. In 2016, it remains a busy place, with the office located in the Headmasters' former residence, College House. Our office’s main objective is to work with the school and OCA to help achieve each other’s goals, through the involvement of the BBC community in social and professional programs and events. As an old collegian, should you be in a position to assist the OCA or BBC, or require more information on our programs and events, please don’t hesitate to contact either myself via or 0422 231 777 or Development and Events Coordinator, Kelly Edwards via or 07 3309 3513. The office is open Monday to Friday from 8.30am to 4.30pm.

OLD BOYS’ TRL DAY Saturday 17 September BBC GOLF DAY Friday 28 October YEAR 12 FINAL ASSEMBLY Wednesday 2 November VINTAGE COLLEGIANS' PELICAN WATERS TRIP Wednesday 30 November For further information on OCA events please visit


BBC Golf Day COMMUNITY EVENT Brisbane Boys' College Old Collegians' Association

OCA launches LinkedIn page The OCA is further expanding its networking connections by launching the official Brisbane Boys’ College Old Collegians’ Association LinkedIn Page.

Friday 28 October Indooroopilly Golf Course 4 Ball Ambrose . Teams of 4 . Sponsorship Opportunities

Register your team

$600 per team Team Registration includes: • Four Player Registrations • Light Lunch • Complimentary use of Practice Range prior to play

The BBC OCA LinkedIn Page connects over 2,500 old boys and allows OCA members to stay in professional contact with other BBC alumni to find who, what and where fellow old boys work. Director of Alumni and Community Jarrod Turner said the new LinkedIn tool would further add to the OCA’s engagement strategy.

• 18 Holes of Golf • Golf Cart • Drinks and Meal at Presentation Function

“The OCA is all about creating connections between BBC Old Boys and then reinforcing this network,” he said. “LinkedIn is a valuable networking tool in the business world so it makes sense for the OCA to tap into this resource and offer another avenue for old boys to connect.” OCA President Chris Hartley echoed Mr Turner’s words, saying the new LinkedIn page could be the first step in a new business network initiative. “Our modern world is about connectivity and having access to our friends and colleagues 24/7,” he said. “Facebook, Instagram and the like offer this in the social media sphere and LinkedIn offers it in the business sphere. “We believe this can be the start of a bigger OCA business interface and in time the OCA hopes to introduce a business directory for old boys and the wider BBC community that acts as a formal hub for our greatest strength in the business community – the power of the old boy tie.” For information and a link to the BBC OCA LinkedIn page please visit -

Become a sponsor

$1200 per hole Hole Sponsorship includes: • Team registration • Exposure of your business on a selected hole • Recognition of your support at the presentation, within the OCA eNewsletter and Collegian Magazine, reaching more than 8,000 people • Promotion of your business in all teams’ registration packs on the day To register a team or for more information please contact Director of Alumni and Community, Jarrod Turner via or 07 3309 3653.

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It’s been a career where opportunities have come up for me and I have grabbed them.”


A MAN FOR ALL SPORTING SEASONS While most sports fans will be glued to the television to follow the fortunes of Australia’s finest athletes when the 2016 Olympic Games commences in Rio de Janeiro in August, there will be one man in particular taking a deep interest. Because for John Wylie, Chairman of the Australian Sports Commission and BBC Alumnus 1978, it is his job. Wylie, elected to the ASC post in 2012 and reappointed in 2015 for a further two years, sees the

themselves. “We’re weeks out from the Olympics so you can’t

Rio Games as a yardstick for the assignment he was

make too many predictions but all of the signs at the

tasked with four years ago.

moment are really good.

“The biggest challenge for Australian sport is finding

“The Olympic team seems to be in a lot better place

a way to improve our results as funding decreases,”

now than what they were before the London Games

he said.

in 2012 so we’re going into Rio with a lot of hope and

“If you look at our performance in the Olympics since 2000, we came fourth in Sydney, we came

optimism about how it might work out.” In a sports-mad nation such as Australia you don’t

fourth in Athens in 2004, we came sixth in Beijing in

just fall upon a role such as ASC Chairman without

2008 and we came tenth in London in 2012.

being extremely well-credentialed.

“Our performance at the Olympic Games has been declining and there hasn’t been more money coming to Olympic sports from the Federal Government through the Sports Commission. “So we took a look at it after I became ASC Chair in

So how did Wylie land himself what he refers to as ‘the greatest job in Australia’? The answer is a business career that is exactly that – extremely well-credentialed. After graduating from the University of Queensland

2012 and said ‘we need to do things differently, there’s

with a Commerce degree and first class honours,

not going to be as much money in the system, we’re

Wylie applied for a Rhodes Scholarship in 1983 at

going to need to shake it up’, and so that’s what we

the behest of his mother and, to his surprise, was



“We launched a whole series of governance reforms, a series of changes to the scholarship system of the AIS, and we decentralised a lot of the decision-making around high performance programs back to the sports

He completed a Masters of Philosophy at Oxford and from there, the opportunities flourished. “It’s been a career where opportunities have come up for me and I have grabbed them,” he said.




“My father always taught me that it doesn’t matter how doors open for you in life, what

were very popular over there. “Their corporate headquarters here in

matters is whether you walk through them and

Australia was in Melbourne so I decided after

take advantage of the opportunity and grab it

eight years overseas it was a good time to

with both hands.

come home.

“I applied for a Rhodes Scholarship which

“I stayed with them until 2000, then started

I basically did because my mother was

my own company, Carnegie Wylie and

badgering me so I agreed to apply to sort of

Company, a corporate advisory and investment

“ but my So it’s hard to judge

strong sense is that those values of participation and having a go and a relatively selfless commitment to a team and to your mates, that was the culture of BBC in the 1970s and I strongly believe that is still the case today.” ensure peace and quiet in the home. “But to my astonishment I got it and went and did two years over at Oxford which was an amazing experience.” From there Wylie worked in London from

firm and it was a great experience being an entrepreneur. “An American company called Lazard came along in 2007, they acquired the company and I stayed as Chief Executive until the end of 2014. “Now I’m doing my own investing and doing some not-for-profit activities like being involved with the Australian Sports Commission and the State Library of Victoria.” While considering his journey, Brisbane-born Wylie recalls his days at the Toowong campus where it all began. “I was at BBC from 1974 to 1978, which was when Graham Thomson was the principal,” he said. “Graham was an inspirational principal for the school and he really taught me and a lot of people of my generation about the value of participation and having a go. “Irrespective of win, lose or draw, Graham was all about putting your hand up and never being afraid to have a go and never being afraid to be a part of it. “That’s very much a philosophy I’ve tried to carry with me through life and I think all of the

1985 to 1987 before an opening on Wall Street

young BBC boys who went through school the

presented itself.

same time as me really learnt that philosophy

“I was working for First Boston, an organisation that had a really good culture and

from Graham and from the school at the time.” While Wylie admits it is ‘quite a few years

strong set of values, and I was there for four

since being back on the College campus’,

years from 1987 to 1991,” he said.

he believes some things have traversed the

“It was a great time to be an Australian over on Wall Street because it was right after Crocodile Dundee had come out so Australians

generations. “BBC has changed since I was there, when I was there I think the total size of the school


was about 600 students and now it’s more than double that size so it’s obviously a much bigger school now,” he said. “So it’s hard to judge but my strong sense is that those values of participation and having a go and a relatively selfless commitment to a team and to your mates, that was the culture of BBC in the 1970s and I strongly believe that is still the case today.” John also remains close with several other old boys. “I’ve stayed in touch with quite a number of my mates from BBC,” he said. “It’s the kind of place where you do develop lifelong friends. “A lot of the guys from my year are doing really interesting things in different places so it’s always good when you get together and see how they’re doing.” In June 2007 he was awarded an Order of Australia for his service to the investment banking and financial industry, and to the community through sporting and medial organisations, but picking out one career highlight is almost impossible.

your message across as effectively as you can.” Sport has always been in Wylie’s blood courtesy of a childhood spent running around outside, so these days he can easily define the impact it has on the Australian way of life. “I started playing Aussie Rules in 1969 for the Sherwood District Magpies down at Chelmer Oval, which explains a lifelong love for the Collingwood Magpies AFL Club,” he said. “I played Aussie Rules, I played rugby at BBC, I played tennis at BBC, I played cricket, just so many different sports and that’s the benefit and legacy of growing up in Queensland. “Now with my role at the Sports Commission, it’s such a privilege to be in that job for so many reasons. “For example, to see all these amazing Olympians, what an incredible thing these kids do with their lives, they literally get one crack every four years. “It’s not like in golf or tennis where if you miss out on a major you’ve got three other cracks in a given year, it’s not like in the AFL where if you

When pressed, Wylie’s passion for sport can’t help but shine through.

miss out on the premiership you come back again next year and have a

“I don’t tend to reflect on personal achievements all that much, I’m


always up for a new challenge and trying new things,” he said. “But I love my involvement with the Melbourne Cricket Ground Trust; I was Chair down there for a number of years and we took on the redevelopment of the whole northern stand of the ground in 2000 with a view to reinvigorating the MCG for the Commonwealth Games in 2006. “We started in 2002 and we finished literally two weeks before the games began. “It was on time, it was on budget and it’s just been an amazing facility for Melbourne.” For a man who has had such an incredibly significant impact on the country, time is obviously limited. Wylie likes to stay active – his trek of the Kokoda Trail in 2006 and two New York marathons pay testament to that – but essentially any spare moments are devoted to his family. He is married with four boys – 18, 16, 14 and 12 years of age – and has even coached three of them at the Ormond Cricket Club in Melbourne. “It was just great, such a fantastic experience seeing the kids develop and be part of a team,” he said. “And it gave me a whole new level of respect for teachers and particularly primary school teachers. “The first two years I was coaching Under 14s, the last year I was coaching Under 12s, and the Under 12s are all basically nine years old

“You get one go every four years and for some of these people it’s literally 25 seconds and it’s all over. “And then on the community side of things, Australians not only love their sport in terms of participation but they contribute to it. “Australia, as a country of 24 million, has got 2 million people who serve as volunteers in the sporting system so it’s the highest rating volunteerism in sport in the world. “And all the good things sport participation gives the community, it gives active and healthy lifestyles, it gives the important lessons and values of inclusion and bringing the community together, it gives inspiration and positive role models. “It’s a really powerful and positive force in Australian life and I’m just so lucky to be involved in it the way I am. “I was fortunate in life to develop business and financial skills and I’ve seen the impact that good financial and business acumen around board tables can make to the way sports go on the field. “It doesn’t guarantee success but it really helps.” So a bit like the athletes he will be watching, Wylie has done all the hard work and preparation. And while that doesn’t guarantee gold medals, as Wylie admits, you do get the feeling that with this type of man at the helm of Australian sport, the Rio Games will have a golden glint about them for our nation's athletes.

so you have a window of literally twelve seconds of their attention to get




Today, Jono – who describes himself as “just a ‘Brissy’ boy who drinks way too much coffee and has the mathematical ability of a frog” – finds himself at the heart of a dynamic ecosystem, managing Microsoft’s Innovation Centre for Queensland. It’s a journey which has seen him adopt various roles at various points in time from starting out as a boxing instructor, coffee barista and surf boat rower, to landing internships with the likes of Red Hat (one of the largest open source software providers), the Business of Trust run by former PwC Director and best-selling business author Keith Dugdale, through to marketing director at Idea Network and digital marketing specialist at Digilari Online Marketing, not to mention start-up co-founder - all while studying Business at the University of Queensland, a degree he is set to complete later this year. But make no mistake, while his metamorphosis may appear rapid and varied, Jono’s achievements are by no means the by-product of luck or chance, but rather a reflection of his incredible attitude and approach to life and resolute commitment to maximising every opportunity that comes his way. “It was a bit of a weird journey,” says Jono. “Quite a few of my friends were also hell-bent on doing medicine, it was the be-all and end-all. They were willing to do whatever they had to and I guess I was just fortunate enough to be in a position where I was very interested in business. Throughout high school I was constantly trawling through start-up blogs but had never really considered it as a career path because I’d always been so focused on medicine,” he said. But as he shared with Year 12 students at BBC’s Careers Conference earlier this year, the decision to study business was one of the best decisions of his life.


“As I started to spend more and more time in the business world I realised how much I loved it and how much I hated the sight of blood. So I dodged a bit of a bullet there. By no means would I encourage anyone to give up on their dream career, but I strongly believe that you need to stay curious, keep an open mind and never be afraid of taking a route you hadn’t planned.” In between working at the gym and Merlo Coffee, Jono’s interest in start-ups moved from a ‘few ideas’ to starting a business with fellow old boy, Max Koopman, who now works as a Software Engineer for Google in the US. “I had a few ideas, but I’m what the industry describes as nontechnical. So I reached out to Max Koopman, who I rowed with at school and said, ‘I’ve got these ideas, I’m non-technical and just want to have a chat’ and he was really willing,” explains Jono. “So we caught up and I told him what I was thinking. He listened politely but at the end of the conversation was like ‘seriously some of these things you’re thinking, you just can’t go out and ask a developer to do – there’s a lot more work in it than you may think’. “In my mind combining all the features from programs like email and Skype into the one place seemed like a good idea. I also wanted to develop a search engine as the basis for a social enterprise, with 30 percent of the profits going to charity. Anyway turns out they weren’t great ideas, although apparently there was an article in the New York Times six months later featuring a similar project.” At the time, Max also introduced Jono to his boss, a start-up guru who had spent considerable time in Silicon Valley working for companies such as IBM and Microsoft. “I really knew nothing about the start-up world and he very generously helped me to create a roadmap to navigate this territory – the places I needed to go, people he could introduce me to, the best approach to take. He also encouraged me not to go down the traditional path of dropping out of uni and explained to me the importance of a degree – so I’ve kept that the whole time. “In the end Max and I co-founded a company, and whilst we’re no longer involved, we learnt so much along the way about procuring investment, offshore manufacturing and the astronomical costs associated with developing a new and custom product.”



At this point in time Jono was only months away from Microsoft.

their very meaning is diminished – for Jono it’s simply about unearthing

“After another internship and working with a digital marketing agency,

new solutions capable of delivering immense value.

I applied to the Microsoft Internship program, in the area of sales and marketing. At the end of the process however, the job they offered me was to run the Innovation Centre and I was pretty happy with that; it was an exciting time.” The centre works to support all stakeholders in the innovation ecosystem, from individual start-ups through to developers, students, academia as well as leadership teams in the public and private sectors. The technology giant has continued to invest heavily in this space, yet had you asked Jono if he’d considered working for Microsoft just a few years ago, he probably would have said no. “A lot of people used to perceive Microsoft as being overly corporate. They weren’t regarded by those in the start-up world as particularly

“We’ve seen a lot of growth in start-ups in key verticals like health, agriculture and renewables but we literally work with everyone. I have an HR start up, who just recently signed a contract with one of the biggest engineering firms in the world. We’ve got another company who has developed a smart hybrid solar system. Founded early last year, they now have over 20 staff and signed an eight figure contract at the end of last year. “Most start ups are really going out to find a gap in the market and a problem in the market. Some of the really successful ones don’t necessarily need to disrupt and completely change the industry. There are certainly people with revolutionary ideas, however, some might just

relevant. The start-up industry is very open, collaborative, fun and exciting and their culture didn’t necessarily reflect that. But the company has gone through a massive transformation in the last couple of years and I’m really passionate about what they’re doing. The best thing about my role is I get to support a community that I’m really passionate about, using a multinational resource. And that’s a pretty awesome position to be in. “The company really adopts the idea behind the growth mindset, knowing that we will always be learning and these learnings are critical in terms of defining future success; and that’s empowering in itself. My manager has never really told me what to do, he trusts me to get the job done. As soon as I walked in the door I was

find a niche that hasn’t yet been filled.


provided with access to a budget, given a brief overview of what the Innovation Centre has done historically and was essentially told, ‘we believe in you’. That trust has enabled me to blueprint programs and implement new ideas. Ideas such as the Customer Access Program which connects startups with key decision makers. “When I first started in the role I sat down with all the start-ups and asked them to provide me with feedback in regards to some of the challenges they face. They all said, very openly, the biggest challenge was getting in front of decision makers; those sitting in large companies and government departments like Dominos, Flight Centre or the Department of Transport and Main Roads for example. “This feedback led to the creation of the Customer Access Program and it’s probably one of our biggest value propositions at this point in time.” So while technology may be at the forefront of what Jono does, his role is still very much grounded in human connection. And in an

“Innovation has definetly become a buzz word and people love to throw it around, but we don’t really have a hard and fast, set in stone definition for it – for me its about finding a way to create value and to look at issues, challenges, opportunities through a different lens.” And when asking Jono about his time at BBC, there’s no hiding his passion for the school. To this day Jono continues to be involved in coaching at the school, sitting on the Young Old Boys Committee and contributing to the Old Collegians’ Association (OCA) Mentor Program. “When I was at BBC, call me weird, but I was one of those guys who honestly loved it. It was a huge part of my life and

even while I was there I was passionate about giving back. So when I left it was kind of a no-brainer that I wanted to still be involved. It was definitely hard for me to leave. “I’ve always been conscious of the help that people still give me and I wouldn’t be anywhere near where I am today had I not had that help. For this reason, I’ve always felt it would be wrong or selfish of me to walk away without giving the same sort of support to other boys who are currently in the position I used to be in. “Being able to come back and look at things from the other side and I guess give back in a way that people had given to me while I was at school has been a really cool experience.” Without doubt Jono, despite working in an industry characterised by constant change and modernisation, remains incredibly down to earth and level headed, an approach which ironically enables him to explore new places and territories with an open mind; to see the world

environment where terms such as innovation and disruption have

from different points of view and ultimately help others bring to life new

become commonplace – to the point where it almost feels, at times,

solutions, ideas beneficial to us all.


VC LUNCHEONS 22 March Picnic Point Cafe, Toowoomba 28 June Galaxy Seafood and Mediterranean, Southport



MELBOURNE DINNER Friday 22 April The OCA President, Chris Hartley (1999) and Headmaster, Graeme McDonald were joined by a diverse mix of old boys based in Victoria. POW Veteran and our eldest old collegian at the event, Jack Bell (1932-1933) gave a moving speech in the lead up to ANZAC Day. Nearly every decade was accounted for amongst the 22 dinner guests, ranging from the 1933 to 2011 with John Wylie (1978) joining Jack Bell as our local hosts for the evening. The OCA Executive is looking at annually hosting Melbourne and Sydney OCA dinners and possibly other interstate and international visits in the near future.




Saturday 7 May

Saturday 11 June

More than 80 Young Old Boys from the classes of 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014 and 2015 attended the Fox Hotel for an evening of catching up with mates in the lead up to exams. Continuing on from the success of the Young Old Boys' events in 2015, the night was a great opportunity to get together, catch up and to welcome the Seniors of 2015 to the OCA.

More than 30 old boys from the Senior Class of 1991 gathered together in College Hall for their 25 year reunion on Saturday 11 June. A number of old boys were able to see our First XI compete against Brisbane Grammar in the last match of their season prior to attending the function. Former Headmaster Milton Cjues (19901995) also joined the group as a special guest, with Director of Boarding Matthew McEwen conducting some impromptu tours of the boarding house on the night. The OCA would like to thank Ben Beard, the 1991 reunion coordinator, for bringing the event to fruition.



CENTENARY OF ROWING DINNER Friday 22 April On Saturday 5 March, following the BBC Regatta, more than 130 old boys from the 40s to the noughties attended the Centenary of Rowing Dinner at the Toowong Rowing Club. Special guests included the 2016 First VIII crew and coach, Richard Paterson as well as BBC Director of Rowing, Andrew Cruickshank and OCA President, Chris Hartley. The event was driven by the Centenary of Rowing committee - a group whose connection with rowing will forever remain strong: Chris Beech (1974), Richard Bell (1972), Simon Newcomb (former Director of Rowing and coach), Graham Stehn (1958), Luke Schoeffler (1989), Harry Foxton (1973) and Ken Hutchinson (1982). Attention has now turned to the next 100 year celebration, with crews – consisting of old boy rowers - training to compete in the Head of Brisbane and Head of the Yarra regattas in October and November respectively. The group is currently looking to appoint crew members and encourages anyone involved in rowing in their former days to call up their mates and get involved. To find out more or to get involved email



Previous occupation/s? Cotton chipper!

What do you do on a day-off? Play with

Where do you live Hong Kong (HK).

Commerce at UQ.

What is playing on your iPod right now?

House Knox.

Have you travelled? I have travelled a fair

Did you study after BBC? I did a Bachelor of Biggest achievement since leaving BBC?

the kids.

Dan Carlin: Hardcore History podcast.

deal. I lived in London for five years and then to

I am proud that I have built a fulfilling family

HK for the last 11.

life overseas. I have been lucky to have had a

Family status? I am married, my wife and I

career in a job I love in an industry that has seen


met in a pub in Brisbane in 1997 and it was

a good deal of turmoil over the past 10 years.

her I chased overseas 16 years ago. We have

What do you aspire to do in the future?

Fondest memory of BBC? Hanging out with a

three kids, Emily (six), Ned (three) and Georgia

My family and I are very happy in HK for now

(almost one).

but an interest in Australian farming has been

Current occupation? I head up Asian Trading

hard to shake…we’ll see.

been with them over 15 years, my whole career.

skiing and reading.

for the US Hedge Fund: Elliott Management. I have

very good friends – usually at the Tuckshop. Favourite teacher/s? Barry Wilson, though

unlikely he would reciprocate.

What do you aspire to do in the future?

Have you travelled? Life as an international

my family before the kids start doing their

airline pilot has taken me to many places. New

own thing, visit all the states of the USA and

Zealand, USA, Canada, most of Asia and the

Canadian Provences, visit my older brother

Pacific and Western Europe.

in South Africa, canal boating in England and

Family status? Married to Jane since 1996.


(also in Rudd House) and Sarah-Jane (14), at

trout fishing and sailing.

Somerville House. Current occupation? Airbus A330 Captain

Do a bit more work in aviation law, travel with

Favourite pastimes/hobbies? Snow skiing, What do you do on a day-off? Read the

papers; go for a bike ride or gym, watch sport

with Fiji Airways (two years).

on TV or at Suncorp, and perhaps an afternoon

Previous occupation/s? Airbus A330 Captain


Ansett New Zealand (1987-1993); Percell

Triple M, Brisbane.

with Dragonair in Hong Kong for 21 years;

Aviation, Sydney Airport; Flying Instructor, Royal Queensland Aero Club, builder’s labourer, bar tender and waiter.

House Rudd.

bunch of guys every day, many of whom are still

Where do you live Denarau Island, Fiji;

Children: Scott (17), in his last year at BBC

Years at BBC Five.

France, though very tough to beat Aussie

Favourite pastimes/hobbies? Running, snow

St Lucia, Queensland.

HARRY FOXTON (1969-1973)

Favourite holiday destination? South of

Did you study after BBC? BA in Asian

Studies, Griffith University; LLB University of New England; various International Airline

What is playing on your iPod right now? Favourite holiday destination? Queenstown, New Zealand.

Fondest memory of BBC? Winning the Head of the River in ‘72.

Favourite teacher/s? Glen ‘Charlie’ Demnar. (art).

Transport licences and aircraft type ratings.




FOOK GOES DESERT He’s known for his work in social enterprise, having established a ballet dance school for children and teenagers with special needs. Now, BBC Old Boy and Youngcare Crusader, Zac Fook can add Simpson Desert trekker to his list. Zac recently conquered some of Australia’s harshest conditions, walking more than 150km across the red desert to help young people with high care needs to live a life of dignity and independence. BBC was extremely proud to be able to

to keep the Youngcare Connect support line

“And whilst it seemed extreme at the time, it

sponsor Zac in the Youngcare challenge and to

staffed to ensure families have someone to turn

really is nothing compared to what the young

play a small part in assisting the not-for-profit in

to when they need information, support and

people we are helping go through on a daily

raising funds for their vital work.


basis,” he said.

Right now, over 7,000 young people with

The experience was captured in a special

“We can all make a profound impact on the

high care needs are living in aged care around

documentary, 8 Days in the Desert, which

lives of the young Australians in desperate

the country, simply because there are few

provides a very real and personal insight into

need and I feel truly privileged to be able to

alternatives. A further 700,000 are being cared

the motivations driving each trekker and the

play a part and for the support everyone gave

for at home by loved ones, often with limited

emotional and physical challenges they all had

me; it is deeply appreciated.”


to face and overcome.

Not for the faint hearted, the trek is designed

According to Zac the trek saw the group

Zac recently gave a presentation at a Hamilton House meeting, who have selected

to reflect the challenges these people face on

walk over 1,000 sand dunes, consume more

Youngcare as their 2016 charity and have

a daily basis. Trekkers found themselves in a

than eight litres of water per person per day

already hosted a sausage sizzle to help raise

completely isolated environment where there

and go without showering for eight days.

funds. Hamilton House will be looking to

was little control over personal choice. Zac joined with 12 bold trekkers for the

“The biggest challenge from my perspective

sign up a team to take part in the Bridge to

was definitely the environment, with

Brisbane in August, with their fundraising

challenge including Channel Nine’s Melissa

temperatures exceeding 40 degrees during the

efforts going to support Youngcare.

Downes, with Zac raising more than $18,000

day and clambering over what seemed liked

- exceeding his target of $15,000 - and the

an endless amount of dunes. It wasn’t only a

for their 2017 Simpson Desert Challenge that

group collectively raising $652,743.

physical battle, but a mental one as well. It’s

will take place from 25 May to 4 June 2017.

incredibly difficult to train for the exact same

For more information head to

age-appropriate accommodation solutions,

conditions you’ll find yourself in out there, and I

provide grants to assist young people transition

guess that’s what makes this the challenge of a

out of aged care and into their community and

lifetime,” said Zac.

The funds will be used to help build more

Youngcare are currently recruiting trekkers


SCHOLARS' ASSEMBLY 28 JANUARY – COLLEGE HALL The BBC community gathered together to acknowledge the efforts of the 2015 Scholars, with 22 boys honoured on the day; their names officially added to a long list of those who have gone before them. In addition to their academic achievement, it was a wonderful opportunity to acknowledge them for the great people they have become; young men who will no doubt go forth with the confidence and capability to fulfil their purpose and change the world.



LEADERS' ASSEMBLY 29 JANUARY – COLLEGE HALL Thought leader and expert in the area of management and leadership Simon Sinek once said, “The responsibility of leadership is not to come up with all the ideas but to create an environment in which great ideas can thrive.” Having been officially inducted as leaders earlier this year, our boys are already proving this to be true as they continue to foster a sense of inclusiveness and unity across the campus.


P&F WELCOME PARTY 25 FEBRUARY - COLLEGE HALL FORECOURT Parents and friends gathered together to officially welcome in the new school year at the 2016 P&F Welcome Party. The event provides a platform for those new to the community to meet other parents and those continuing on to reconnect with friends in a social school setting.

HONG KONG COMMUNITY VISIT 4 MARCH – CONRAD HILTON HOTEL A number of BBC staff, including Headmaster Graeme McDonald, hosted a community function at the Conrad Hilton Hotel in Hong Kong during March, catching up with old boys as well as past, present and future families. The visit represents one of many which are held throughout the year as part of the school’s Community program.



BOARDERS' PRE-FORMAL 16 APRIL – COLLEGE HALL Boarding seniors swapped their weekend wear for some more dapper attire, attending a pre-formal event prior to travelling to the Sofitel Hotel for the social event of the year – the Senior Formal. More than 100 people from across the boarding community came together to celebrate the occasion.


MCKENZIE MOTHERS' DAY FUNCTION 6 MAY - INTEGRATED LEARNING CENTRE According to McKenzie House Captain, William Grunwald – and his mum - this year’s McKenzie Mother’s Day Breakfast was a ‘total success’ with the room ablaze with laughter and smiles. William and House Vice Captain Kyle Chapple also addressed the group, giving a personal insight into what their mums mean to them and the importance of not taking them for granted.

JUNIOR SCHOOL PREP HIGH TEA FRIDAY 6 MAY - PREP CENTRE As part of the Classroom Café events held in the Junior School, the Preps held a High Tea for their mothers in May. In the lead up to the event, the boys discussed Mothers Day and made a card and a necklace. They also painted a portrait of their mothers, with parents having to guess which best resembled them when arriving. Much excitement followed as the boys served their guests.



ANZAC DAY 22 APRIL – MIDDLE SCHOOL ANZAC Day is always a busy time of year for the College with many boys taking part in services to honour the fallen and those who serve our country. In addition to the annual service held at the College, the BBC Pipe Band and Brass Band performed at a variety of local services including Stuartholme, Toowong, Indooroopilly, Graceville, Ithaca and Mount Ommaney, and 75 members of our pipe band also marched in the City Parade. The parade was aired live on ABC TV. Max Kirsch, who was awarded a Premier’s ANZAC Prize in 2015 also played a special role in the celebrations and was joined


by former school sergeant, Mick Leckning.


I was chosen to lay a wreath on behalf of the students from the

5 December James Wheeler (2002) and Teegan Massey (PICTURED ABOVE)

“Prior to the day, I had the honour to represent Queensland and BBC at Brisbane’s 2016 Student ANZAC Ceremony where Premier’s ANZAC Prize 2015,” said Max. “Being at this event gave me an opportunity to reflect upon

12 December Zachary Halliday (2010) and Peta Barker

my journey to Gallipoli one year ago and the morning that we,

11 June Robin Maycock (2002) and Tamara Milne

as a group, descended onto the beach at ANZAC Cove after the

12 June Matt Brundle (2005) and Kimberley Warren

VALE Hugh Nielsen (1948) passed in August 2015 Rev Norman Crowe (1949) passed in October 2015 Trevor Stacey (1949) passed in December 2015 Charles Miller (1942) passed in February 2016 Adam McDonald (1980) passed in February 2016 Gregory Clark (1997) passed in February 2016 Neil Phillips (1988) passed in February 2016 James Glasgow (1972) passed in March 2016 John Brimblecombe (1955) passed in March 2016 Cameron McPhee (1955) passed in March 2016 Donald Hoare (1940) passed in April 2016 Donald Slater (1949) passed in May 2016 Ian Fulton (1954) passed in May 2016 George ‘Roger’ Harding (1954) passed in May 2016 Richard ‘Dick’ Kidd (1942) passed in June 2016 John Stephens (1930) passed in June 2016

SHARE YOUR COMMUNITY ANNOUNCEMENT In each edition of Collegian, we include a number of community announcements including births, weddings and the vale as part of our Milestone section. If you have an announcement you would like to share with us, relating to either yourself or a fellow old boy, please inform BBC’s Alumni Office via

historic ceremony marking 100 years since the Gallipoli landings,” he said.

FLASHBACK | 77 Last year having been fully immersed in researching information for The Fallen book, one of the aims was to locate photographs of both people and places. Suddenly to find an image of one of those very scarce computer was both a sombre and engaging

attachments not only allow glimpses into

experience. Not only was I the recipient of a

the Little family, but also make reference to

much sought after portrait, but also of three

the BBC community in Clayfield.


After the death of her only son, in grief Mrs Frank Little increased her support

Nevill Montague Little and two of the letters

working quietly and determinedly for

were written by him from the Atilier Hospital,

charitable institutions such as the Red

Cairo. The first, a four-page letter to his

Cross, Soldiers’ Club, and the Coo-ee

parents was written on 12 June 1915, and

Café. Eleanor had been a prominent welfare

the second, a two-page letter was penned

worker pre-war and was champion of the

on 22 November 1915. Nevill had been

Bush Nurses’ Association and also first

wounded at Gallipoli and while recuperating

president of the Brisbane Women’s Club

in the Cairo hospital, he described his

and foundation member of the Queensland

experiences on the peninsular.

Women’s League.

Two of us had to carry the bombs, 100


On Friday Greg sent further personal offerings relating to the family. These

The portrait was of Second Lieutenant

Helen Jackson, Archivist

The donor of the archival gifts was Mr Greg Dawes, a family member from Sydney.

WWI portraits looking at me from my



History, and our Honour Board support Mr Rudd’s insightful thinking.

Nevill’s grandfather Robert was

lbs in weight up a very steep cliff. The climb

Queensland’s first Crown Solicitor and

was terrible, as we had all our gear on and

was the person who built Whytecliffe, his

it was not safe to go unarmed. Archie and

22 roomed, two storied home at Albion

I were together and we were completely

Heights, c.1880. Today Whytecliffe with

knocked up when we got there. To give you

enclosed verandahs of glass and aluminium

an idea of what we had to climb, take for

is part of the Retirement Village built on

instance the Devil Slide on One Tree Hill (Mt

the old St Columbans’s site. The towering

Coot tha), with a rifle and 150 rounds of

weeping fig trees which command the

ammunition and these bombs.

corner of Sandgate and Oriel Roads were

These letters were particularly poignant for BBC student, Max Kirsch, who in Year 9 in 2015, chose Little as ‘his man’ to

planted by Robert Little in his ‘country’ acreage. The Brisbane Courier relates the social

research. Max, a selected representative

chit chat of life in 1926, when Mr and

on the Premier’s Prize ANZAC Tour to

Mrs Frank Little were host and hostess

Gallipoli and the Western Front, read his

at afternoon tea for a few friends before

investigations to the assembled student

leaving for Southport. The tables were

group. This tribute took place in front of

decorated with small brass bowls of

Nevill Little’s memorial at Villers-Bretonneux.

floating lilies and asparagus fern. The

The third letter in Mr Rudd’s hand writing

guests included Mesdames RS Berry, May

was to Mrs Eleanor Little, Nevill’s mother

Graham, C Steele, C Jamison, Alex Jardine,

and donor of the WWI Honour Board in the

Harold Freeman, M Western Walsh, Miss H

College Chapel. Mr Rudd discusses his visit

Milman and Mr J Steele. Most were friends

to Harvey Brothers, the wood carvers of the

and parents of the College at Clayfield.

Honour Board and expresses his perceptive thoughts to Mrs Little. I suggested to Harvey the words

The Littles were prominent in the social and public life of Brisbane. Frank was a banker and good citizen while

Egypt, Gallipoli, Poziers would be suitable

Eleanor provided heartfelt support and

underneath the inscription…

organisational skills to causes for the sake

You mention the Battalions. I think in time

‘of the boys’. They contributed a life of

to come Australia’s name will be associated

service to others with their son sacrificing

with names of places rather than with

his life for the nation.

divisions and battalions, and two words like Gallipoli and Poziers would convey a world of meaning.





When there’s so much going on at a school it can be easy to define it by its achievements alone – be it an innovative program, a premiership win or individual student success. But sometimes a school’s very difference can’t necessarily be described. Yet most often than not, you’ll know it the very minute you walk in. It’s intangible; a feeling that this is a good place, a happy place. In an effort to provide an insight into the ‘other side’ we took to the schoolyard to capture our boys in action; their genuine energy and enthusiasm for all things lunch. And whilst it would be remiss of us to describe it as natural – the photographer hardly went undetected and our boys clearly are not camera shy – it certainly provides an insight into how our boys set and shape the tone at BBC.


Boys move to the beat of their own drum. That’s why we have music every day. At Brisbane Boys’ College, we believe music is an integral part of child development; not to make them musicians but to complete them as human beings. BBC’s Music Every Day program provides all Prep to Year 3 students with daily specialist music lessons. The program acts as an aid to literacy and numeracy and is yet another facet to the development of boys who’ll bring great joy to their families: even when they bring their instruments home for music practise.

Collegian Magazine - August 2016  

The Magazine of Brisbane Boys' College

Collegian Magazine - August 2016  

The Magazine of Brisbane Boys' College