The commencement of Term 2 sees some noticeable additions to College facilities.
A large screen and projector have been installed in the Year 9/10 common area of Helix, allowing quality projection of visual presentations to students within this large auditorium space. The installation was considered during the design phase of the Helix building, with its need becoming increasingly apparent over past years to maximise the functionality of the space. Whilst its application will be predominantly for student use, it will also provide additional flexibility for use during College community events and functions in this precinct.
To cater for the additional needs of student travel to and from school, and during excursions and co-curricular activities, the College has purchased a new 39-seater coach. Where possible, the College prefers to source its transport needs internally rather than hiring external services, and this addition supports that ongoing strategy of upgrading the College fleet to ensure appropriate safety and flexibility of our internally managed bus capacity. The coach has been wrapped, with our Learner Attributes and a fantastic Education Outdoors image and is now active on the roads.
The redevelopment of the Performing Arts Centre continues. This important precinct, which is very much the cultural heart of the Penquite campus, is being expanded to provide additional gallery spaces, a rear exit and stairwell, and an enhanced courtyard space. Work is proceeding on schedule with opening due early in Term 3.
Our facilities at the College are the physical manifestation of our educational philosophy. Pedagogy and functionality are the main drivers to improvements in facilities at the College. To ensure that resources are directed to those areas most in need or with the greatest long-term benefit for our students, strategic planning is important.
The College Facilities Masterplan, recently updated to enable the delivery of the strategic objectives of SOC 2035, our new 15-year strategic plan, delivers a planning framework for ongoing investment across the Elphin, Penquite and Valley campuses of the College. You can view the Masterplan here.
Two significant projects from the Masterplan are currently in the detailed planning phase for potential Board approval and construction over the next 12-18 months: i) a new learning centre encompassing four classroom and associated learning breakout spaces on the Elphin campus to cater for continued enrolment growth and enhancement of our contemporary learning environment and; ii) completion of the existing Helix building with additional development towards Penquite Road, which will complete the original design of that precinct with the provision of new learning spaces and the reinstatement of Ravenscraig. Stay tuned for the progress of these important project concepts over the latter part of this year.
In recent weeks, including over the holiday break, a number of students have achieved success across a range of activities.
Public Speaking: Will Scott (Year 12) won the Lions Public Speaking State Final and is in the National Final in Canberra in May.
Gymnastics – Trampolining: Lucy Chesterman (Year 12) has been selected in the Tasmanian Gymnastics Team to compete at the Australian Championships in May.
Rowing: After a very successful rowing season for our club, Heidi Schouten and Lindsay Calvert topped off the Girls Crew’s win in the Head of the River with a 2nd place in U19 pair at the National Championships. As a result, Heidi and Lindsay have been selected in the Australian Junior Rowing Team – the first Scotch Oakburn students to achieve national selection in rowing while still at school. They will compete in a four with two girls from Queensland later this year.
Athletics: During the recent holiday break, Alexander, AJ, Creak (Year 12) and Sophie Marshall (Year 8) competed very successfully in the 2021 Australian Track and Field championships. AJ came 5th in the U/20 400m and 6th in the U/20 200m, both in personal best times. He now has an Australian ranking of 5th in the country in the under 20 age group and is currently the 7th fastest 400m runner in Australia. Sophie Marshall competed in the U/15 1500m coming 4th and the U/15 800m finishing 6th. These are brilliant results for two outstanding young athletes.
As a result of AJ’s achievements, he has been selected in the Athletics Australia Under-20 Athletics representative team in the 4 x 400m relay. The team was due to compete in the World Athletics Under-20 Championships in Nairobi, Africa later in the year but due to the risk of Covid-19, the team have had to withdraw. However, as part of the team, AJ has been invited to take part in an Under-20 Camp on the Gold Coast in June. Within this camp, there is the opportunity to compete in two Oceania Athletics competitions on the 5th and 12th of June.
Sophie’s performances have resulted in her being invited to join the Athletics Australia Targeted Talent Program, which identifies younger athletes whose performances were outstanding at the Nationals.
Squash: Over the Easter break Joseph Clyde (Year 12) competed in the Australian Junior Squash Open., placing 12th nationally in the Under 19 Boys division. Joseph is now ranked 2nd in Tasmanian across all juniors. Joseph now plans to play in the Australian Junior Championship later this year, in Canberra, representing Tasmania. This is the most important event in the squash calendar and will be his last chance to represent Tasmania before ageing out of the junior divisions.
Rostrum Voice of Youth: On Saturday 8 May, the Rostrum Voice of Youth was held in the Robert Dean Senior Student Centre at Scotch Oakburn College. Ninety-nine students from around Tasmania registered to take part this year and eight of those students were from Scotch Oakburn. I am delighted to inform you that Jack Oates Pryor (Year 12) was selected as one of the six state finalists and Amelie Hughes (Year 10) received an Encouragement Award.
Little Athletics: Six Scotch Oakburn College students were selected in the State Little Athletics 20/21 teams and participated in a state competition in lieu of the Australian Little Athletics Championships not being held. This event including Tom Watters (Year 9), Year 8 students Abbey Berlese, Mia Green, Tahlia Muller and Blaise Fitzallen, and Bella Shaw (Year 7).
Swimming: Five students participated in the Australian Age Swimming Championships on the Gold Coast. Taylor Brock (Year 8), Emily Mitchell (Year 10), Isabella Muldoon (Year 8), Xavier Nesbit (Year 9) and Charlotte Pilsbury-Milne (Year 10). Emily Mitchell also competed at the Australia Swimming Championships the following week, competing against swimmers who we’ll soon be watching at the Olympics. This is a significant achievement.
Congratulations and good luck to all of these students in their various pursuits.
On Wednesday evening we kicked off the first of three Staff Culinary Therapy and Education sessions. This one was titled ‘Hey There, Sweet Thing!’
Nine staff from a range of areas and departments at the College, both teaching and non-teaching, took on the challenge of learning about textural and compositional changes to sweet treats. Our menu consisted of Strawberry and Vanilla Macarons, Lemon Meringue Pie and Honey Pannacotta. We began with something to nibble while watching an educational Macaron demonstration, where specific culinary terminology was taught, like the term ‘Macaronage’.
It was such a wonderful experience for staff who don’t always work together, and some not knowing one another, to spend time doing something fun, learning some new skills and getting better acquainted with their colleagues along the way. A big thanks to the team that came along. Our next session is taking place in Week 6 and is called ‘ Doh, I Did it Again!’ which will look into relieving stress as we work with a range of doughs.
I admit it – I was an eye-roller. When my Grandmother spoke to me about just how challenging things were for her growing up I would respectfully listen then allow my eyes to deviate somewhere near the back of my head as I turned away (taking a huge slice of jam sponge cake with me). It never occurred to me at the time that these stories were important to my development, that anecdotes of saving all year for an outfit would be character inspiring. I wish I had listened more.
This was brought home strongly to me after an engaging staff presentation delivered by Antony Keeley from the Resilience Project. Antony presented to our teachers on both the Elphin and Penquite Campuses this week with two powerful messages ringing through.
Research suggests that when the adults in a child and adolescent’s life share stories of their own vulnerabilities and transgressions it helps the young person in multiple ways. Shared stories of positive experiences and achievements are important, but stories of challenging experiences and mistakes are also important as models of overcoming challenges, adversity, and vulnerabilities.
Antony spoke about the storytelling our young people are exposed to, the vast majority being online, a tremendous amount of that being misleading – a “snap in time” or just plain false. People are reluctant to share their less than perfect moments and so shiny, often staged photos and videos are uploaded for others to view and contemplate. Inevitably we, and particularly our young women, fall short in comparison to this fictitious normal. That is why our children, more than ever, now need to hear the stories that parents and their grandparents often struggle with to tell.
As a Psychologist, I was particularly interested in the recent statistics Antony shared in regard to depression and anxiety and the management of it at school. One in four adolescents are experiencing depression, one in three anxiety. Antony warned against the adults in a young person’s life labelling any presentation outwardly, particularly anxiety. He explained that in our haste to support our young people we can inadvertently contribute to their feelings of stress and anxiety by “bubble wrapping” them. By protecting them from any situation they may find challenging rather than supporting them and encouraging the development of skills to help them cope and overcome the obstacle. Instead, normalising some of the anxiety provoking situations and sharing stories of personal experiences and success in this area can assist in encouraging young people to persevere, to face some of life’s challenges with an open, positive mind. In closing, Antony shared the following video clip which powerfully demonstrates that focusing on what we all have in common rather than what sets us apart can help build a sense of belonging and most importantly acceptance.
Paul Dillon has been working in the area of drug education for the past 25 years. Through his own business, Drug and Alcohol Research and Training Australia (DARTA) he has been contracted by many organisations and give regular updates on current drug trends.
He has previously worked with Scotch Oakburn and many school communities to ensure that they have access to good quality information and best practice drug education.
Paul will present a Community Education evening on Monday 7 June discussing Teenagers, alcohol and drugs. This is a free community event however RSVP’s are essential as COVID restrictions apply. COVID check-in will be required.
Recommended Audience: Parents and guardians of students in Year 9-12
Having the confidence, tenacity and commitment to take responsible risks to extend capacity, persevere when presented with a challenge and learn from mistakes.
One of the College’s core ‘Learner Attributes’, this was the theme chosen by Year 2 Bauld students as they led Connect@Elphin this week. The audience of Year 2-5 students heard each of the 2 Bauld students share examples of how they needed to be courageous as they transitioned into Year 2 in 2021, either from Year 1 on the other side of the Elphin Campus or as a new student to the College. Among many new experiences and challenges, this school year presented them with a new indoor and outdoor learning environment, daily access to a much wider area of the Campus, mixing more with older students rather than being the oldest in their area as previously, making new friends among their own peer group, having a wider range of teachers for different subjects, going to House Meetings and the Swimming Carnival, ‘harder work’ and… learning how to put on a tie to wear to school!
Having the courage to initiate friendships, to join group activities outside the classroom and in their House, and to share with peers or teachers when a concern was on their minds or a learning task was proving difficult, were all highlighted during the presentation.
The final message from 2 Bauld reminded all of us of the importance of being courageous in our daily lives:
‘Courage doesn’t always roar. Sometimes courage is the quiet voice at the end of the day saying, I will try again tomorrow.’
Thank you to every member of the class for their message and well done on their courage demonstrated by standing and speaking in front of a large audience of older students as well as adults.
Lachie Wright Head of Junior School
All families are reminded that May 20 and 21 are 2021 School Photograph days at the Elphin Campus. All students should be in full school uniform on their class photograph day. Details of this have been forwarded to all families across Early Learning to Year 5. Anybody needing additional information can contact the Junior School Office.
Launceston Competitions – Drama
Congratulations and well done to all Junior School students who participated in the 2021 Drama Competitions. The skill of effective communication, particularly in front of an audience, is such an important life skill.
Special acknowledgement is made of Clarice Kirschbaum and Audrey Green on being awarded the Year 4 Aggregate Prize. Clarice also received the Artistic Excellence award and Audrey received the Adjudicators choice award for Most Promising Performer.
Lachie Wright Head of Junior School
New Mural – Elphin Tennis Court
What makes a Great Journey? This was the focus question for Year 4 students working with artist Ghostpatrol (David Booth).
Linked to their classroom inquiry into Great Journeys, Year 4 students have recently worked with mural artist ‘Ghostpatrol.’ The students began with brainstorming ideas around this question by creating sketches and documenting their thoughts. Ghostpatrol then distilled these ideas into a mural design that captured the collective feeling of the Year 4 group. The mural has been completed this week. This work invites many interpretations and conversations around the essence of a great journey and has enhanced this part of our school environment.
Suzanne Creese Teacher
Cross Country – Newstead Athletics School Series
Students from each of our three campuses are enjoying participating in the Newstead Athletics Cross Country School Series. This series involves six events over six weeks at various locations. This year’s series began two weeks ago at Tailrace and last Saturday we were at Scotch Oakburn Park.
The College is very well represented across all age groups, and our runners are really challenging themselves reminding us of Kurt Hahn’s famous quote – “there is more in us than we know”.
It’s not too late to get involved, the series takes place on Saturdays arriving at 12:30pm for a 1.00pm start. If you are wanting to be involved you can register at School Series Info – Newstead Athletics.
We look forward to this Saturday’s event at Hagley Farm Primary School.
Becca Biggs Teacher
Donation to St Giles
Dezzy Wilson (Year 3), spent his holidays growing and selling Spider Plants to raise money for St Giles. This wonderful act of giving from Dezzy encompasses so many of our Learner Attributes including collaboration, compassion, being ethical and innovative. Well done Dezzy! (Image source: St Giles Facebook)
A word’ from our students about the World Peace Game
The following insights are from students in Year 7V, who have just enjoyed the ‘global challenges’ associated with the World Peace Game. Thank you to Mr Simon Dray for his coordination of this dynamic team event. The student responses are reminders to all of us, to reflect on the key attributes for what makes successful teams, friendships, communities and ‘worlds’.
Q. What was the purpose or point of playing the World Peace Game for you?
The purpose of the world peace games is to put us in a position of great responsibility and teach us to deal with real situations in the real world. It gave us the chance to make decisions with our ‘citizens’ lives on the line. (Eden)
Q. What characteristics make a good negotiator?
To have strong words, to keep persevering no matter what and listen really well. (Isabella)
Q. Is there a ‘best way’ to solve problems in the world between opposing viewpoints?
Keep an open mind when negotiating between opposing viewpoints and try to achieve common ground to solve the problem. (Lucy)
Ben Green Head of Middle School
Middle School ‘Rock Theatre’
This week we witnessed the opening of the Middle School ‘Rock Theatre’. Inspired by the Year 8 Peer Leaders, the sounds of mass djembe drums echoed around the Middle School during lunchtime activities. The intent is to provide a connection through Drumbeat and Drum Circle approaches. This is also a great way for various ages (including staff) to enjoy being part of a drum group, sharing skills and rhythms. Special thanks to Mr Dean Hawkins for his drumming expertise and enthusiasm!
Ben Green Head of Middle School
Year 8 Information Online session – Education Outdoors and EY8 Presentation
This Wednesday 19 May, Mr Mark Munnings, or Director of Education Outdoors and I will lead an online session from 7.00pm for all Year 8 families and students. Mr Munnings will lead a presentation for Year 8 families and students in preparation for the upcoming Year 8 Education Outdoors Program, while I will provide updates on the current EY8 Program. To access this presentation please use the link emailed earlier today.
Ben Green Head of Middle School
Eddie Toohey (Year 7) has been selected in the Tasmanian U14 Rugby Union team to compete in the Southern State Championships.
Ben Green Head of Middle School
Yumi Orihara visits
This week some Year 7, 8 and TCE students were able to interact with Yumi Orihara, using the Japanese they have learnt in class. It was an excellent chance to listen to a native speaker and equally, be courageous to speak with her in Japanese. As Children’s Day was celebrated recently in Japan, Year 7 students tried their hand at making a Samurai helmet out of newspaper. Displaying samurai armour during Children’s Day is believed to guard against calamity and misfortune. Samurai armour is also intended to inspire traits of strength and bravery within young children.
Jenny Banbury Coordinator of Japanese
The Year 8 Design class have had a busy start to the year. Students have been given the challenge to be innovative and design and produce their own unique handheld non-electric game or puzzle. The design results have been fantastic and so has the variety of ideas the students developed using the design process. From basketball and soccer shot games, puzzles, marble mazes and many more the students and I had a great day at the end of the project playing each other’s games.
Next up the students focus turned to learning a variety of new hand skills working with timber and several different tools and processes in the workshop. They were all very excited to use the College’s laser cutter and digital technology to personalise their projects.
To complete the Semester, students are putting everything they have learnt so far into practice. Designing their own aluminium and timber project with some digital laser elements to make it their own unique design. I am very much looking forward to seeing what this talented group of students can produce over the coming weeks.
Groups of Year 10 students experienced all that Tassie’s stunning environment has to offer this week: the mountains, the rivers, the rain and snow, the sea, the wind, the sun and the clouds. I had the privilege of having daily contact with all the groups and also spending time with two of them. For so many of our students this week will live on in their memory, they will reflect on these experiences in many different ways, but what is certain is that perspectives on their young lives will have changed in some way.
Year 10 students collaborated when they needed to be agile, they showed courage when faced with adversity and compassion towards their peers who may have struggled more than they did. They effectively communicated as they satisfied their curiosity and behaved ethically as they left Tassie’s pristine environment the way that they found it. They learnt about the importance of self-regulation as they understood the value of being inclusive of different viewpoints and abilities.
Some memorable moments for me during my daily satellite phone conversations with our Ed Outdoors leaders included letting Lauren Hayes know that the forecast for her bushwalkers in the Walls of Jerusalem area indicated a temperature minimum of -5 and a maximum of 1 degree Celsius; Luke Hammond informing me that some of the Mountain Bikers in Derby had their tents flooded on Monday and were not impressed by wet sleeping bags, hearing from Mark Munnings that the tide was a bit high at White Water Wall near Freycinet so rock-climbing was on hold for a while – abseiling occurred instead and having daily updates from Steve Jacobs at the Arm River Education Centre about the increasing confidence of students as they navigated the Mersey River rapids.
I was incredibly lucky to spend a day on the Mersey rafting with students and a night on the Ringarooma River around a campfire with the Mountain Bikers.
Witnessing the skill development of our budding raft guides was remarkable. The program provided students with the opportunity to learn to “read the river”. It was awesome to be guided by the students in my boat and watch them learn from their errors and then celebrate each other’s success when they got it right.
The Mountain Biking group were full of healthy banter and showed great respect for each other’s different skill levels. Harry Kilby and Josh Lyne set the bar very high for the group but were super supportive of those that were less experienced at taking on Derby’s tracks.
Congratulations to every student on every program this week, your skillset will have changed but more importantly, your understanding of others would have been enhanced. You will come back to school with new perspectives that will help you to manage your personal schedules better than before.
You will have lived Kurt Hahn’s words: “There is more in you than you think”
Stuart Walls Head of Senior School
TCE Play – Metamorphoses
The TCE Drama/Theatre Performance Play is Mary Zimmerman’s ‘Metamorphoses’, adapted from the classic Ovid poem Metamorphoses. Students will be performing in the Undercroft area of Middle School under the HPEC next Wednesday 26, Thursday 27 and Friday 28 May, starting at 6.00pm.
There is a rumour that there is a pool on set, which will make for an interesting performance. Please note that although the play rated rated PG, some content is not appropriate for young viewers.
Entry is by gold coin donation but there are a limited number of seats per performance and bookings are essential. Go to https://www.trybooking.com/BRGHX to book your seats.
Jack wins Northern Rostrum Final
On Saturday 8 May, courage, creativity and teamwork were on show as eight of our students competed in Rostrum Voice of Youth.
Jack Oates Pryor (Yer 12) clinched the crown with another student from Launceston Church Grammar School, so both will now compete at the state final on 19 June, with a potential win and trip to Adelaide for the Nationals in July. Amelie Hughes (year 10) was hot on the heels of the two boys, winning the Encouragement Award and special mention must be made of Jasmine Irani (year 10), Alysha Carins (Year 12) and Alex Munro (Year 12) for their engaging speeches.
In the Junior Section, Charlotte Oates Pryor (Year 9) and Maddie Hassell (Year 7) made their public speaking debuts, and as nerve-wracking as it was, their speeches were very well received. Charlotte Ball (Year 9), having more experience under her belt, once again delivered an inspiring speech, this time on empathy.
Having won Rostrum’s State Final in 2020, Dean Power (Year 12) decided to forego his participation this year to let others shine. Instead, he attended the event for the entire day, quietly and calmly mentoring and inspiring all our students and we were all grateful for his presence.
As one parent said on the day, ‘What a privilege it is to sit in the audience and listen to these talented students.’ They were spot on.
Katie Lester Person-in-Charge of Public Speaking
Year 10 Festive Foods
Year 10 Festive Foods students are currently working through the design process in creating the ultimate 2-tiered Chocolate Mud Cake with a New Years Eve theme. This task enables students to develop their food manipulation skills in working with fondant icing, tempering and forming the molecular structure of chocolate, some students are using spherification to form small globes to use as decoration, some applying mirror glaze icing and all will be learning about the crumbing layer of buttercream.
An important part of a task like this is that it allows students to not only appreciate the skill level that is often required for cake decorating, but more importantly, that they are able to problem-solve on the go when their initial design doesn’t quite go according to plan. Student’s will need to navigate what has to change very quickly to still achieve their desired outcome. ‘Failure’ is a necessary part of the learning process, as students are able to reflect on what didn’t work and build their learning piece by piece as they reflect and know what they would change for next time. We look forward to sharing the images of the processes and completed cakes with you in Week 4.
Lauren Knight Teacher
The Girls AFLW season has begun with two great wins. On Wednesday 12 May our NSATIS First XVIII Girls AFL played St Patricks College. The conditions were perfect for football with cool conditions and determined spirits from the girls.
The final score was NSATS Firsts 10 6 66, St. Patricks College 2 1 13. Best players Bremner Z, Edwards, Bingley, Hall, Jones. Goals – 3 Bingley, 1 goal each Stones, Jones, O’Keefe, Nathan, Nast, Healey.
In addition to our Firsts Team, girls interest in this sport has allowed us to enter a separate local competition each Wednesday afternoon. We began this roster with a win to our Senior High school team 4 6 30 against Queechy High School 2 4 16. Best players: Jepson, Bingley, Hall, Nast, Dennis. Goals – Jepson E, Hall, Dennis, Nast.
Congratulations on a fantastic start to the playing season with enthusiastic teamwork and a willingness to step in and help where it was needed. Special mention to Mr McKendrick, who coached the two teams on the day.
Fiona Taylor Person-in-Charge of Girls Football
Coming up in May from the Futures Centre
May UTAS Years 10 – 12 Virtual Medical Careers Information Evening – Register here
17 – 23 May is National Career Development Week – keep an eye on The Dash and like the Futures Centre Facebook page for valuable information, resources and hints to help you explore your career options!
17 – 19 May – Year 13 Expo, Australia’s biggest digital expo is live this week.
Gain insights into industry, connect with work, study and travel providers, watch 24/7 on demand videos and live sessions daily from 4pm. Hear from a huge range of speakers ranging from Dr Karl, university students, professional athletes, entrepreneurs, apprentices, CEO’s, tradespeople, health professionals and more!
Family rituals strengthen the sense of warm connectedness in families. This makes sense, given that the number one biological need for every human is the hunger to belong, and to be accepted, valued and loved.
The disruption of life in 2020 saw many families unable to go about their normal activities, and for many, family rituals reclaimed their valuable position. For some, it was simply going for walks together, riding bikes together, baking, or watching movies together complete with homemade popcorn.
So how can families create and maintain small rituals that make such a difference?
Turn routines into rituals
Bedtime routines that include such things as reading to your children, singing special bedtime songs or even just lying beside your child do far more than help them to fall asleep. When these routines are repeated, they create neural pathways which enhance loving connection. As a nanny to several precious little ones, I absolutely love being a part of their bedtime rituals.
Reign in the chaos
Family rituals bring a degree of predictability and certainty into our sometimes chaotic lives. They are important for teenagers as they provide a sense of control at a time of change and challenge. Families who are struggling with any uncertainty and stress should regularly connect with a much-loved board game or family movie and dive into it with enthusiasm. Leave work and worry behind and spend a couple of hours with those you love the most.
Create greeting rituals
Greeting and goodbye rituals within families are also important. How you welcome and reconnect to children after a day away shows them that you have missed them and still love them. With little ones, some parents leave a kiss on their child’s palm. For others, there are special handshakes. I can still remember my dad saying goodbye to us with the oldie but goodie “See you later alligator!” To which we naturally replied, “in a while, crocodile!” This is a ritual that happens now with my grandchildren.
As an authorised celebrant, I have conducted many funerals and one of the things that brings joy to broken hearts are the shared memories of family rituals. The repeated nature of ritual helps to anchor memories deeply in our minds. I remember a beautiful funeral for a man where everyone wore a beanie and a scarf, including his youngest grandchild. This simple act was a nod to the fact that whenever this grandfather watched football on TV, he always wore a beanie and a scarf and so did anyone else who was watching with him. A simple but powerful act.
Never underestimate the importance of family rituals in your home.