As we conclude another term, I want to commend our students on their amazing energy, positive engagement in their own learning, their compassion for others and their willingness to embrace so much of what our School has to offer. Many of these qualities are highlighted in the reports being distributed today; however, there is also great feedback identifying ways in which students can continue to grow and learn. I enjoyed reading their reports and wish all students a safe and enjoyable holiday. I look forward to their return in Term 3.
House Cultural Festival
While results are not known at the time of writing this newsletter, the Cultural Festival has again been a highlight of the House calendar and is a great way to finish the term. The standard of performance in the musical items was very high and it was wonderful to see some of those students, not always at the front of our music ensembles, joining in and providing some wonderful performances in a range of genres. The House Choir performances were also enjoyable and, as always, all House events continue to improve. The Chess matches were focussed and competitive. The dance routines at both junior and senior level were entertaining and very professional.
For me, the highlight of the day was the joy evident from all competitors as they entertained their peers. I commend our House student leaders, especially the Cultural Captains, for their organisation and leadership in the preparations and performances; it was a fine example of a student led event.
Shooting team success
Congratulations to the Clay Target Shooting team on their performance and success in the Howard and Schuback Gippsland Schools Championships, held at Longford on Tuesday 20 June. Our Shooting Captains, Aaron Barling and Mitchell Rankin, provided the following report on the team’s success.
‘The Gippsland Grammar Shooting Team of 24 students travelled to the Longford Field and Game Howard and Schuback Gippsland Schools Championships, and recorded our most successful shoot of the year. There were 160 students competing from schools including Yarram Secondary College, Nagle College, Lavalla College, and St Pauls Anglican Grammar School; and this made for tough competition.
Twenty simulated targets over two rounds of ten ensured that only the most consistent and accurate shooters would be successful. At the conclusion of the competition, Gippsland Grammar ‘A’ Squad, comprising Aaron Barling, Hayden Johnston, Quinn Wade, Sam Davis and Rob McNeilly had surged clear, to win the coveted shield by two targets. The shield was awarded for the 40th year and Gippsland Grammar has dominated in recent years.
Many individuals tasted success, as we placed in the Senior Boys and Senior Girls. Shooting a score of 13/20, Claire Merry recorded a breakthrough result, winning the Senior Girls Division. Fellow shooter, Julia Rainey showed her dedicated training is paying dividends, claiming 3rd in the Senior Girls, after a fierce shoot off. Sam Davis once again showed his progression and obvious talent, obtaining 3rd in the Senior Boys, after another competitive shoot off. Hayden Johnston came agonisingly close to another top 3, finish placing 4th in the Senior Boys.
Once again, all our members are to be congratulated for their strong performances, especially our junior boys; Jack Prestney, Tim Morgan and Callan Kerby who are thoroughly enjoying recent competitions and the experience of being regular members of the School Shooting Team. Overall, the day was a great success, which was enjoyed by all. Thanks must finally be extended to Mr Kuch and staff, for without their support, the day would not have been possible.’
Jessica Thomson (Year 12)
Congratulations to Jessica who was awarded the Gippstar “Open” Award for April in recognition of her selection in the Australian Junior Rowing team heading to Lithuania. We congratulate her on her achievement.
Christine Turra (Year 12)
Christine is currently in Los Angeles studying a short program Summer course at the Stella Adler Art of Acting School. It is pleasing to hear and report that she is enjoying the amazing experience. Most of those participating in this Summer program are older, between 22 and 27 years of age. Christine has had the opportunity to meet other international students who are studying the full time conservatory course at this renowned school. In an amazing opportunity for someone so young, she has been appointed Class Secretary by the teachers, which is akin to being the class leader, requiring her to liaise between teachers and students. I have no doubt Christine will make the most of this amazing opportunity. We wish her well as she pursues this dream.
Aboriginal Summer School for Excellence in Science and Technology
Summer school programs for Year 10 students are held each year and there has been an extension on ASSETS applications until 30 June. More information can be found at the CSIRO website http://www.csiro.au/Indigenous%E2%80%90assets/apply
Helping Hands Projects
The Year 9 students held their Cultural Festival Fair this week, raising funds for their World Vision sponsored child. A group of Year 12 girls has also taken on the Ration Challenge as part of Act for Peace’s Refugee Week Ration Challenge. Along with 14,000 other people across Australia, they are living on refugee rations to raise money and awareness for communities threatened by conflict and disaster. They’re eating the same as a Syrian refugee living in a camp in Jordan; just a small amount of rice, lentils, chick peas, beans, fish and oil. I commend all these students on the serious and compassionate approach they have taken to their service learning projects.
|Junior Girls B Grade Netball (FINAL)|
|Thursday 22 June 2017|
|Gippsland Grammar v Newhaven|
Best on Ground:
|Junior Girls A Grade Netball (FINAL)|
|Thursday 22 June 2017|
|Gippsland Grammar v Beaconhills Pakenham|
Best on Ground:
|Junior Mixed Hockey (FINAL)|
|Thursday 22 June 2017|
|Gippsland Grammar v St. Paul’s Warragul|
Best on Ground:
Aden Best, Jonty Condron
Instrumental Enrichment Program
Over the past few years a number of staff across all three campuses have been training in Feuerstein’s Instrumental Enrichment Program (FIE).
FIE is a pencil and paper curriculum designed to change how young people think and reason, so that they can become effective learners in the classroom and less impulsive when problem solving. It has been in use for more than 40 years with many different student populations.
FIE builds essential, (and often missing) thinking skills that directly impact a student’s ability to learn maths and develop the reading comprehension necessary for all subject areas.
FIE works to enable students to restrain their impulsivity and improve their focus by teaching systematic approaches to learning.
At Garnsey Campus, students in Year 7 and Year 9 have been working through one of the instruments ‘Organisation of Dots’, the students have commented that they feel more focussed and plan their work more carefully than they did before completing the course.
Over the past few years I have been fortunate to have been sponsored by Independent Schools Victoria to attend a great deal of training, both in Melbourne and overseas. This training has not only allowed me to be able to work with international trainers but also to become an accredited Feuerstein Instrumental Enrichment trainer myself. One of the main benefits that I see from having this certification is now, I am able to train our own staff to deliver this program to their students.
This year I have been taking a very enthusiastic group of staff from all three campuses and they have completed 3 out of 5 days of training. Being able to train our own staff will enable us to ensure that this program is sustainable and able to become a core part of our student learning at Gippsland Grammar.
Mrs Kate Arnup
Head of Pathways
The Addams Family: So who is this Lucas fella? Is he worthy of Wednesday? Do they really love each other? Find out when the Addams Family move into Garnsey Hall from 3 to 5 August. Tickets on sale today via the School’s website. www.gippslandgs.vic.edu.au
Reports are coming!
Teachers have been working purposefully to develop reports for parents which reflect an accurate account of the progress, skills and areas for improvement for all students throughout Semester 1. These reports will be distributed next Friday 23 June, the final day of Term 2 before our three week holiday break. The following article from ‘Parenting Ideas’ may help parents to navigate the best ways to use the report for secondary students. Students will bring the reports home with them next Friday; any student who is absent from Friday afternoon Mentor Group will have the report posted home the following week.
School reports – tips for parents By Lakshmi Singh
Elizabeth Watson, Acting Director of Curriculum at Waverley College’s Senior School, believes feedback and reporting is essential in helping students reach their learning goals, but they won’t be very effective if they aren’t treated as conversation starters and opportunities for active reflection. It is important to take a broader view when reading a child’s report.
“Reports can sometimes be a teacher’s perspective and not necessarily the complete picture. Talk to both child and teacher to gain a more complete understanding and never judge the child harshly, instead focus on the solution to any problem or issue causing this.”
Watson recommends asking the student to perform a self-assessment by posing questions like: “Does this report reflect my understanding in each subject?”, “Does this report reflect my effort in each subject?” and “What will I do differently next time?”
Following this self-assessment, it can help to discuss ways of improvement and seek recommendation from teachers.
“Should there be areas that need attention, rather than focus on marks or ranks, think about strategies that will improve the quality of your work,” says Watson.
Watson encourages parents to make the most of opportunities such as parent teacher interviews. This is where parents can ask for specific areas that need developing and strategies for improvement.
Some sample questions Watson says parents could ask teachers include:
- Mathematics – “What particular topics need attention?”
- English – “Did [student] fall down with his paragraph construction or with his grammar/spelling?”
- Science – “Did [student] perform better in the practical or theory component of the assessment?”
- Art – “How much time should [student] be spending on his/her major work compared to theory?”
Tips from the experts:
- Discuss the report with the teacher to fully understand the situation, be curious, and don’t jump to conclusions.
- Talk to your child calmly, go through the results and ask how they are feeling about it.
- Ask the child questions like: “Is your workspace conducive to quality home study?”, “How can I help you manage your workload?”, “What strategies do you think will make a difference?”
- Set practical small steps for the child to work on to reach the final goal.
Support them along this journey, check in regularly and re-adjust if required.
Having read many reports over the last week, I would add the importance of celebrating students whose reports reflect respectful behaviours and consistent effort; there are many which do and it has been fabulous to read about the wonderful and responsible approach so many of our students take as they embrace learning opportunities at Gippsland Grammar.
General Achievement Test
All students studying a Unit ¾ study completed the 3 hour General Achievement Test (GAT) on Wednesday 14 June. Known as the GAT, this is a test of general knowledge and skills in 3 broad areas: written communication, mathematics, science and technology, and the humanities, arts and social sciences. Each area represents a body of general knowledge and skills that students are likely to have built up through their school years. Although GAT results do not count directly towards a student’s VCE results, they play an important role in checking that school-based and external assessments have been accurately assessed, and in calculating Derived Examination Scores. In addition to the challenging nature of the questions and tasks, many students found the length challenging, although the lunch provided afterwards to the Year 12 students brought some comfort!
Bus Safety Incident
A timely reminder this week to talk to children about safety issues, after a vehicle and driver approached a student as they were walking to meet their mother after getting off a School bus in Bairnsdale. I encourage all parents to discuss this issue with their children and develop a clear understanding and plan for how to respond in such circumstances. This incident was reported to the police and East Gippsland parents were notified.
Arrangements for the final week of Term 2 at Garnsey campus
Monday 19 June: Thursday as normal with House Meetings instead of Assembly on Monday
Friday 23 June: Final day of Term 2 (Students must wear Sports uniform with House polo shirts)
Periods 1-2 as timetabled
House Cultural Festival: Music, Chess, Readers’ Cup, Dance, House Choir
Lunchtime – Quadrangle Fair and Sausage sizzle
3.00pm Mentor Group and distribution of reports