Gippsland Grammar news: March 12, 2021

Mar 12, 2021 | Bairnsdale News, Community News, Garnsey News, Principal's News, St Anne's News

If you are a basketball fan I’m confident you’d know the name of the greatest ever coach: John Wooden. He was most commonly known as the ‘Wizard of Westwood’, but most people just called him ‘Coach’. ‘Coach’ led the UCLA to a record ten NCAA titles. Later in life, John Wooden was a high school English teacher as well as preacher. He loved writing poetry and one of his quotes is ideal for our students as they continue to reflect on their studies.

“Don’t let what you cannot do interfere with what you can do”.
-John Wooden

Every day, irrespective of which campus I’m visiting it is wonderful to see our students engaging in their learning. Last week, I enjoyed reading our Foundation student’s writing examples and I also spoke to our Year 12s who are working to maximise their time and study schedules. We have much to be proud of. It is also wonderful to see the continued easing of restrictions, especially those that have enabled us to put some events back onto the calendar. We are committed to ensuring that the remaining COVIDSafe guidelines are maintained to a high standard across our campuses.

Our Year 9 students have enjoyed their Melbourne experience this week and I have already received positive feedback outlining the maturity of our students, with their activities.  My sincere thanks to the teachers who accompanied our students on this wonderful opportunity.

Planning is well underway for our St Anne’s Open Day (Early Learning Centre – Year 6), which will be held on Saturday March 27 from 9-11am.  I would be grateful if you could share this event with friends, relatives or work colleagues who may like to come and hear about the opportunities that exist in our Early Learning Centre (three and four-year-old students) through to Year 6 at St Anne’s.

Have a lovely weekend.
Leisa Harper

The children attending the Transition programs at the ELC all participate in a ‘buddies’ program during their year before school. The program operates with mentors from the Year 5 classes of Hollows and Cuthbert at St Anne’s and Grevillia at Bairnsdale.

The students have now been paired and will meet regularly for various cross-age activities throughout the year that are designed to complement the educational programs offered at both year levels. Our buddies program continues over two years, which means those children progressing onto Foundation at Gippsland Grammar will be paired with their same ‘buddy’ as they begin school next year. Having an existing relationship with an older mentor is an integral part of our transition to school process and the relationship between older and younger students can continue for many years.  I know of students in Year 12 and beyond who still look forward to meeting their former ‘buddies’ and hearing about their progress.

Throughout the year, the children enjoy playing, exploring, and learning with their older buddies and developing caring, trusting relationships. They develop co-operation and collaboration and become confident in working with older students and in the junior campus. The buddies program also builds resilience and risk-taking skills as they take on new challenges and make new discoveries with the older students’ support.

We are looking forward to another exciting year ahead filled with fun and friendship for our Transition and Year 5 students.

St Anne’s and Bairnsdale Year 5 students have started forming connections with their Transition buddies in ELC.

BAIRNSDALE NEWS, by Head of Campus Virginia Evans
After a relatively quiet and short week at school I decided to seek some ideas and thoughts from the students and staff to assist me in writing the newsletter. I have chosen the following topics and asked some questions to prompt their thinking.

WILSON: What is the best thing about Wilson?
He makes me happy and I love patting and cuddling him. Hayley, Year 1

INSTRUMENTAL LESSONS: Tell me what it feels like when you are playing in front of us at Fellowship?
I haven’t played at Fellowship, but when I do, I will be very nervous, and I am practicing all the time. I love the sound of my song Jimmy Jams! Omar, Year 3

GREEN TEAM: Why did you join the Green Team?
I like planting, growing, picking, and sharing the vegies with our Community. Layla, Year 4

SRC: What is the SRC working on currently?
We are currently working on a Crazy Hair Day in support of cancer as Mrs Stevens is going to cut her hair.  Mia, Year 4

JAPANESE: Is its hard learning Japanese?
Yes, sometimes it is a bit hard. You have to really listen. The songs are fun to sing and I like the bus game. Charlie, Year 1

What is your current interest in learning?
I am currently learning how to measure the impact of my teaching on student learning.
Mrs Amanda Jenman

ENRICHMENT MATHS: Tell me about Enrichment Maths.
I am really enjoying problem solving and discussing the solution with Mrs Jenman and the students in our Enrichment Group. Oscar, Year 6

ENRICHMENT ENGLISH: What have you found challenging?
My challenge is to identify descriptive language in my reading and transfer it into my writing to make it vivid for the reader.  Evan, Year 5

EXTENSION DIGITAL TECHNOLOGY: What are you working on?
We are working in groups designing a game, using Scratch, with backdrops and characters. We create the coding to allow the characters to follow instructions. We will be entering our games in a competition. Benjamin, Year 5

A team of 16 swimmers represented our campus at the Regional Swimming Carnival at the Sale pool on Thursday with some wonderful results. Piper, Year 4 and Tessa, Year 5 will be progressing to the State Championships on Monday April 26. Enjoy the weekend ahead.

ST ANNE’S NEWS by Head of Campus Jie Van Berkel
I would firstly like to thank Mrs Sheryn Ray who was Acting Head of St Anne’s while I took long service leave last week. Knowing the Campus was in Mr Ray’s capable leadership enabled me to have a restful week; I took the opportunity to travel to Tasmania with my wife for a wedding and also enjoyed some amazing sightseeing.

Today at Goolagong’s Fellowship, our Year 6 students researched and prepared small skits and speeches to help our students learn about the famous Australians that are a significant part of our journey at St Anne’s. Our classrooms are named after significant and inspirational Australians and each year our students enter a new classroom which has a name that they may not be familiar with. Goolagong’s Fellowship shed light on why our Foundation rooms are called Mawson and Bass. A big thank you to Miss McNaughton and Goolagong’s students for this morning’s Fellowship.

Our St Anne’s swimming team put in a fantastic performance at the Wellington District and Regional swimming carnivals this week. I am excited to announce that all our swimmers who competed in the Wellington District carnival made it through to the Regional carnival. Many of our swimmers are members of local swimming clubs and take their swimming seriously. However, I would also like to acknowledge the huge impact that Mrs Simone Langshaw has had on this group. Over the long weekend Simone provided specialised swimming training for our swim team. For those in our Community who aren’t aware, Simone is an expert swimming coach who holds advanced qualifications and provides terrific advice and enthusiasm to our young swimmers.
I would like to take this opportunity to thank Mrs Simone Langshaw, Mrs Amanda Canfield and all the parent helpers who assisted at the swimming carnivals over the past few weeks. I always take the opportunity to visit our swimmers during each carnival, and it is fantastic to see their smiling faces and obvious enjoyment.

For some time, there has been a debate within schools on how students learn to read and how to explicitly teach this. The science of reading has identified there are six essential skills necessary for reading success. They include oral language, phonemic awareness, phonics taught systematically, vocabulary, fluency, and comprehension. At St Anne’s we have been engaging with the science of reading for some time. This includes reading the research behind the science of reading, improving our reading resources, reflecting on our current practice and implementing new strategies.
For the next week, we are fortunate to have Karen Starkiss, an educational consultant specialising in raising standards in literacy in schools, working with our teachers at both our St Anne’s and Bairnsdale campuses. Karen is an expert in the science of reading. Throughout this year, she will be spending time collaborating closely with our teachers, reviewing, and refining how we teach reading at Gippsland Grammar.

Thank you to Mrs Ellen Condron and our Green Team for leading the way with our sustainability efforts at St Anne’s. Last Friday, our Foundation to Year 5 students (Year 6 were on their city camp), for participating in our Clean Up Australia Day efforts. Below is a great photo of some of our Year 2 students showing their efforts. Have a great weekend.

GARNSEY NEWS by Acting Head of Campus Kate Ray
While I am sure we all enjoyed the long weekend on Monday, having a four-day week did not seem to impact on the number of different activities that our students were involved in this week. Our entire Year 9 cohort headed to Melbourne early Tuesday morning to begin the first of two weeks of their Melbourne Experience. After this experience was cancelled for our Year 9 students last year, it was wonderful to know that this year’s group was able to experience what is often one of the highlights of their entire schooling for our students.

COVIDSafe planning added its own challenges for our Year 9 team around planning, adjusting, and managing the program to ensure the safety of our staff and students. Head of Year 9 Mr Tyler Smith and his team have handled this extremely well. From all reports, the students are embracing their time in Melbourne and the learning opportunities it presents.

We also had a group of Arts students participate in a SEISA Visual Arts day at Newhaven College on Tuesday. These students had the opportunity to collaborate with and learn from other like-minded students and work with staff with different areas of expertise. Being a member of the SEISA organisation enables our students to have these rich experiences. Later in the year our students will also participate in SEISA Cultural events including debating, chess, and public speaking.

Luna Park was also an excursion destination for our Year 12 Physics students on Wednesday. Luna Park provides the perfect opportunity for our students to experience ‘real life’ learning while on the rides. One of the students commented that while there was lots of learning to be had, going on the rides was an experience that they would not necessarily wish to have again!

Our Theatre Studies class attended the Top Class VCE Theatre Studies session in Melbourne this week too. The students have the chance to see what last year’s top performers achieved. These sessions are a great way of showing our students what they need to be working towards.

If you and your child have been discussing career paths and future plans, please make sure to visit our Gippsland Grammar Careers Newsletter on VOS. Mr Justin Henderson updates this newsletter every three weeks and it provides a running list of important dates for the year as well as any interesting articles or events that might be relevant to you and your child.

Our ISC staff are also seeking donations of wool and crochet hooks to assist in establishing a lunchtime ‘Loop by Loop Crochet Club’. Students will be able to come along each Thursday during lunchtime to learn how to crochet a range of items from a scarf to a beanie or for those ready for an even bigger challenge, a soft toy. Our ISC Technician, Ms Amyjean Forbes will be leading this group. If you have any wool or crochet hooks sitting idle in your homes, please consider donating these to the Club. Items can be left at Garnsey Reception.

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