St Joseph’s College focuses on providing a differentiated ‘boys education’ with a specialised approach to teaching and learning at each year level.
Year 7 Camp
Don Bosco Camp, Safety Beach is the first stop for the Outdoor Programs Calendar. Year 7 students spend three days and two nights amongst their fellow classmates transitioning from primary school to secondary school at this traditional, time-honoured destination.
With the full support of College staff, Year 7 Camp is designed as a “get to know each other ” style camp. Students participate in many group activities including a beach athletics carnival, soccer, volleyball, swimming and indoor sports. This camp helps to set the tone for the coming year for our Year 7 boys.
Year 8 Four Seasons Program
The Year 8 Four Seasons Program is an integral part of each student’s development in preparation for his Year 9 Expedition the following year. The school year for Year 8 Outdoor Education is divided up into four seasons.
Summer: Life saving and preservation skills. Hiking and local bush knowledge.
Autumn: High ropes course, dietary and public travel awareness.
Winter: Mountain bike riding and preparation for activities.
Spring: Overnight camp, hiking, cooking and preparation skills.
The purpose of this comprehensive experience is to give each student the opportunity to participate in a variety of challenges that will equip him with the skills needed to successfully complete his Year 9 Expedition the following year.
Year 9 Expedition
One of the highlights of the boys’ time at St Joseph’s College is the Year 9 Expedition to the high country at Mt Hotham. It is a 7-day program taking place in March which incorporates hiking, abseiling, rafting, mountain-bike riding and many other activities.
Valdocco Agriculture Program
Each year Valdocco offers a Certificate II in Agriculture for the boys to participate in a wide range of activities centered in and around our 10+ year old vineyard.
The boys hit the ground running by netting the crop in early February to keep the birds out. Testing and sampling takes place in March, determining crop potential and estimated harvest time.
Harvest is one of our most important dates on the Agriculture calendar. This is when all the hard work performed in the classroom and vineyard over the last twelve months pays off. It’s a productive and fun day where the students are exposed to specialised vineyard equipment, industry standards in occupational health and safety, individual and team harvest operations and have the opportunity to see what it’s like working a full day in the vineyard and winery.
Applied science is a large part of post-harvest when the student’s begin fermentation of the grape juice. Students learn how to efficiently prune a grapevine, a great skill to have for any budding Viticulturist. With nearly 1,000 vines to prune, they are sure to be experts by the end of winter setting the vineyard up for another successful crop in 2017.
Year 10 Alpine Ski Experience
As part of the College’s compulsory curriculum and your son’s ongoing Outdoor Education Program, he will attend the Year 10 Alpine Experience during August. This activity builds on the learning, outcomes and achievements gained from the Year 8 Four Seasons Program and the Year 9 Expedition. This unique Alpine Experience further broadens our student’s knowledge and appreciation of country Victoria. Each student will have the opportunity to learn new or refine existing skills in cross-country skiing and downhill skiing or snowboarding. This program is designed to build each student’s confidence and develop resilience in an alpine environment as they physically challenge themselves over the duration of their 3 day experience in Bright, Victoria.
Each student will participate in downhill skiing or snowboarding for the majority of the time with the opportunity to do some cross-country skiing.
All students will be supplied with fitted equipment including helmet, skis and boots or snowboard, boots and wrist guards. Parents are required to supply appropriate jacket, pants, goggles and gloves. Parents can provide these items or they can be hired.