'The world is a book and those who do not travel, read only one page.'

 

I came across this quote again recently on Social Media and it made me really stop and think about just how much I have travelled in the past and what impact this has had on my personal world view. Luckily, for me I have had many opportunities in my work as a Language teacher and now as the Round Square and Exchanges Co-ordinator to travel, and at the end of next week will be accompanying two of our Year 10 students to South Africa to participate in the Round Square International Conference 2017.

In my last eNews article, I wrote about what the Round Square International Conference involves and the benefits these opportunities have for our Westminster community. The quote above also made me realise what wonderfully adventurous students we have here at Westminster and how lucky they are to be in a position to take up so many of these opportunities. I have many students come in to chat with me about Exchanges, Conferences and Service Learning overseas and it is amazing how fearless and enthusiastic they are in their pursuits. A fascinating part of my role is then talking to parents of these students to explain that participating in these travel opportunities will be an incredible experience for their child.

So why do we as humans actually want to travel? What is it that makes some people want to travel more than others?

There is of course no simple answer to this, except to say that some of our decisions are based on our values and upbringing, socio-economic status and our personality type. There is no doubt though in my mind that part of the reason why Westminster students are so keen to take up these challenges and opportunities is because of the influence from the Round Square IDEALS, which are embedded in everything they do. The philosophy behind Round Square is essentially based on ‘experiential’ learning. The challenges and joy that travel can bring, truly encompass all of these aspects!

The Virtuoso Travel Blog has a great article on ‘10 powerful reasons why people love to travel’. I have summarised their main points below. Reading this, it is easy to see how well our Round Square IDEALS fit in with these points!

10 Powerful Reasons Why People Love to Travel! - http://blog.virtuoso.com/tips-and-trends/10-powerful-reasons-why-people-love-to-travel/

1. Challenging yourself

  • Travel is the ideal place to test yourself. It pushes people to their limits and gets them outside their comfort zone.
  • Overcoming challenges will bring you joy and energy for future tests. You’ll realise how capable you are and build your confidence.

2. Learning

  • People want to experience something unfamiliar and leave with new skills or knowledge.
  • Every destination has something unique to teach visitors, and immersing themselves in a completely different world is the best learning experience.
  • By being exposed to new places, people and cultures, you’ll develop a wider world view.

3. Expanding your perspective

  • Travel helps open your mind. You realize that there’s no one way to live life. Meeting people from other places will show you that your world view isn’t the same as everyone else’s.
  • By being exposed to new places, people and cultures, you’ll develop a wider world view. And that will make you a better-rounded global citizen.

4. Getting in touch with yourself

  • Getting away from home gives you the opportunity to reflect on your life. You have the needed time and space to let your mind wander and take stock.
  • Travelling is one of the best ways to learn more about yourself.

5. Appreciating your life

  • Exploring another place will give you a fresh appreciation for your hometown, country and “real life.”
  • You’ll see that there really is no place like home.

6. Building and strengthening relationships

  • The shared experience of travel brings people together.
  • With the demands of today’s lifestyle, and relatives spread across the country and world, families don’t have much time together.
  • Travel is a special way to deepen friendships as well.
  • Travel is also a great opportunity to make new friends

7. Having an Adventure

  • Humans crave new experiences and travel lets us tap into that craving.
  • You’ll feel a sense of accomplishment.
  • You’ll return home with the best souvenir of all: a memory of your incredible adventure.

8. Escaping

  • People seek from their travels what they don’t have back home: better weather, nicer scenery, the freedom to do what they want, experiences they can’t normally have, a slower relaxing pace.
  • Travel has the power to let you not only escape but also heal. A new place with lots of fun distractions can work wonders.

9. Relaxing and rejuvenating

  • What should you do when you’re there? Nothing, really. Relax and be present in the moment.
  • Travel helps your mind and body reboot in a way you can’t achieve at home.

10. Celebrating

  • There’s always a happy reason to take a trip. A special occasion is made even more special by celebrating away from the hectic pace of life at home.

Thank You Red Dove Café Volunteers!

Just a quick note to say an enormous ‘thank You’ to all of those who helped out in any way at the Red Dove Café at the Royal Adelaide Show 2017. Westminster School had over 30 students volunteer their time this year, as well as one very generous parent. All feedback from both the organiser of the Café and from the students themselves indicated that it was a very positive experience for all concerned.

Service Learning Reflections - Red Dove Café at The Royal Adelaide Show

I worked a shift at Red Dove Cafe and it was very enjoyable. The other staff members were very friendly and always trying to help you with whatever you needed. They were very organised, which led to quick service for the customers. The shift did go an hour and a half overtime, but that was alright, because Jack and I were happy to help. Thank you for the opportunity and I would love to do it again.

Benjamin Brown (Year 9 Carter)

On Father’s Day, after enjoying a quick lunch with Dad, my Mum and I caught the train to the Royal Adelaide Show to volunteer at the Red Dove Café. Our shift started at 3.00 pm, just as Ebony and Hannah were leaving after finishing their shift. Many other Westminster students helped out at other times during the ten days of the show. The café was a busy place, serving afternoon tea to show visitors and exhibitors. The Red Dove Café is now located directly across from the stables and we were able to watch the horses through the window as we worked. At first, we were not sure what to do but then the other volunteers showed us how to help. We were put in charge of the bain marie where we were plating up meals such as sausages, curry, rice, mashed potato, and vegetables. Other people were cooking hamburgers, bacon and eggs, sandwiches, chips and wedges. There was also a range of other food including pies, pasties and sausage rolls, and healthy salads in the fridge.

When we weren’t busy in the kitchen, Mum and I also helped serve meals to the customers sitting at the tables. It got quite busy at 5.30 pm because people started coming in for dinner but the busiest time for us was 6.45 pm. Everybody wanted sausages for dinner but we ran out! More sausages had to be cooked on the barbeque, which meant that the customers had to wait longer for their meal.

My Mum and I enjoyed chatting with the other volunteers and knowing that we were being helpful for such a good cause. The free meal and drink was an added bonus! It was clear that the exhibitors appreciated being able to have a warm place to sit and eat healthy meals rather than Dagwood Dogs and Fairy Floss out in the cold! However, we took home a bucket of Fairy Floss ourselves as a show treat! Thank you to Mrs Chukwuani for organising this experience.

Anna Wilson (Year 9 Forder)

 

Round Square Student Board Nominations for 2018

Do you care about what happens in your school, local and international community and want to have your say?

Would you like to be part of organising a variety of great service projects and exchanges?

Are you keen to show off or develop your leadership skills?

Then why not nominate or have someone else nominate you to become part of the new Round Square Board for 2018!

We are keen to have as many students as possible from a variety of year levels (6-11), who are interested in promoting the Round Square IDEALS of Internationalism, Democracy, Environment, Adventure, Leadership and Service!

Round Square is a unique and amazing part of our school and provides our students with a number of great opportunities other schools don't have access to.

Find out more by coming along to our next Board meeting, in room 204 at lunch time on Monday 18 September, Week 9. I will be accepting nominations for the new Board during and before this meeting so please email myself or Mr Chris Haines in the Prep School, on the contact details below if you are keen to be a part of a dynamic, fun and motivated team!

Exchange Student News

Very soon, we will be farewelling Westminster student Millie Young (Year 11 Woollacott) as she embarks on a new adventure heading to Rothesay, a small independent day and boarding school in New Brunswick, Canada.

Millie will spend approximately five to six weeks at Rothesay-Netherwood School. (http://www.rns.cc/glance/welcome)

We wish Millie all the best for her time away and look forward to hearing more about her experiences on her return!

 
 

Round Square Conference Opportunities 2018

Keystone Academy Round Square Conference
Saturday 31 March to Wednesday 4 April 2018

China
Suitable for ages: 13 to 14
Keystone Academy

Regents’ Bangkok RS Global Conference
Monday 9 to Friday 13 April 2018

Regents’ Bangkok
Suitable for ages: 14 to 15
Regent’s Bangkok School

Bunbury Cathedral Grammar School Round Square Conference
Saturday 14 to Wednesday 18 April 2018
Bunbury Cathedral Grammar School, Australia
Suitable for ages: 15 to 18

The Armidale School Round Square Conference

Monday 23 to Friday 27 April 2018
The Armidale School, Australia
Suitable for ages: 10 to 12

RSIC Montreal, Canada
Dates still to be confirmed, but likely to be around end of September/early October 2018
Suitable for ages: 16 to 18 (students must be 16 in year of the conference)
Hosted by several Canadian schools, yet to be confirmed.

If any student is interested in attending any of these conferences for 2018, please email me directly as soon as possible to find out more. Many of the earlier conferences require an expression of interest by October. Cost will vary significantly depending on the location and length of the conference. Age restrictions apply to most of the conferences and this is to ensure that students are working with similar aged students on a variety of Round Square issues.

Anyone interested in finding out more information about Exchanges or any other Round Square initiative should contact me via Email if in the Senior School, or contact Mr Chris Haines via Email if you are in the Preparatory School.