Weekly News – Term 4 | Week 8

Mrs Barron with Emma Taggart, 2017 Dux

Dear Parents and Caregivers,

And just like that, school is over for 2017.  Leavers’ Service and Prize Giving was held this week and we are pleased to announce our top honours recipients for 2017:

  • All Round Service: Tessa Woodhouse
  • All Round Achievement: Rachel Kinley
  • Proxime Accessit: Madeline Guthrie
  • Dux: Emma Taggart

The 2018 Prefects are:

Head Girl
Helen Knott

Deputy Head Girl
Sophie Armstrong

Head Boarders
Bella Chapman-Cohen and Hannah McStay

Sport Prefects
Taylor Duffy and Olivia O’Neill

Art Prefects
Lillian Gibbs and Lydia Holmes

Milan Jeon and Jess Powell

Liaison Prefects
Melissa Gray and Hannah Hedges

Academic Prefect
Issie Robertson

Maori Pacifica Prefect
Hannah Alcock

Congratulations to all students who received awards last night. The full list will be provided in the print newsletter, which will be posted home next week, along with reports.  It will also be published on the Award Ceremonies section of the Parent Portal.

Introduction of Sustained Silent Reading

As a staff we believe that reading is a core skill across all subjects and that it is crucial to develop and encourage this.

Certainly the research around this tells us this is true:

  • Time spent reading is positively associated  with higher literacy scores and reading achievement (OECD 2010).
  • Readers learn new vocabulary simply by reading books (Saragi, Nation, & Meister, 1978).
  • Studies also show that silent reading programmes improve student attitudes towards   reading.
  • Silent reading programs can improve reading speed as well (Dwyer & West, 1994).

After looking at the research around the benefits and best practice we are going to introduce Sustained Silent reading as part of our programme. The research suggests 10-15 minutes everyday.This is time ‘added’ not ‘subtracted’ from our curriculum time. We must remember that fifteen  minutes of sustained silent reading offers significant opportunities for students’ language and literacy development which benefits all curriculum learning. For 2018 we will begin each afternoon with 15 minutes of reading. This has meant some adjustments to our timetable which can be viewed here.

Digital Citizen Use Agreement

We have updated our digital citizen user agreement (Cybersafety). A hard copy of this has been sent with the newsletter for you to read through with your daughter. We would like these signed and returned for the new school year.

We are thrilled to announce our 2018 Artist in Residence is Shayne Carter.  Shayne is a Dunedin musician and songwriter/composer who has recorded and toured internationally for three decades.  An inductee in the New Zealand Music Hall Of Fame, he has won several New Zealand Music Awards and has been a finalist for the APRA Silver Scroll three times.  Shayne has recently toured Asia, playing live guitar with Atamira Dance Company and has also performed concerts of his original material with the Auckland Philharmonic Orchestra and The Christchurch Symphony Orchestra.  Shayne has also been a mentor at secondary schools for the past two years via the New Zealand Music Commission.  We are extremely lucky to be able to have Shayne working with us next year.

The office closes for the year on Friday December 22.  Startup dates for 2018 will be published on the Events Calendar page on the Parent Portal next week and they will also be published in the Otago Daily Times at the beginning of the year.

Wishing you all a safe and festive holiday season and we look forward to seeing you in 2018.

Student Achievement

The Cricket First XI placed second at the NZCT Cricket Tournament.

At the New Zealand Secondary Schools’ Athletics Championships last week, the 4x100m relay team consisting of Mikayla Thorn, Georgia Rathbone, Leonie Palmer and Sarah Langsbury placed third.  Sarah placed second in Long Jump and sixth in the 300m Hurdles, Georgia Rathbone placed fifth in Senior Pole Vault, Georgie Jessop placed 7th in Javelin, Mikayla placed eighth in the Senior Triple Jump and Leonie placed 9th in Long Jump.

The Year 9 students worked in teams to create garments with a range of LEDs and sensors for a cross-curricular Textiles and Digital Technologies project.  To showcase the project, there was an E-Textiles fashion show held in Whitby Hall. The following teams were awarded certificates for their effective designs, teamwork and technical ability.

Design Awards
Best Use of Hand Stitching and Embellishment: Farrin Quin and Tessa Sinteur
Best Overall Theme:  Lauren Heng and Helena Fitzgerald
Most Effective Use of LEDs to Accentuate the Design:  Jordan Meltzer and Inez Meeuws
Best Use of a Range of Techniques: Emma Andrews and Frankie Robertson
Best Kiwiana Theme:  Alika Croot, Analee Toro, Sofie Bain
Best Overall Ensemble and Use of a Range of Fabrics:  Tessa McConachie and Millie Dickson

Technical Awards
Effective Integration of Complex Technical Work: Annabelle Stewart and Kristin Willis, Latasha Hastie and Grace Cotter, Rylee May and Priyanka McKenzie-Patel