Kristen Bence has continued delivering her informative and helpful sessions assisting staff to implement the new Australian curriculum at Years 8 to 10.Amy Chesser attended an Australian Curriculum Conference as part of the State Conference for the English Teachers Association.
Our heartfelt congratulations go to Jake Rowe who was awarded a Defence Forces scholarship and a traineeship in Furniture/Cabinet Making.
Monique Martin, Ella Kidman, Heidi Hutchesson and Tom Moore have each received a Vinnies Social Justice Award in recognition of the work they undertook in Sierra Leone.
A highly successful Course Counselling Day was held with Year 10 and Year 11 students and their parents attending interviews to confirm subject selections for 2012. The day was the culmination of work carried out in Home Groups and discussion with individual teachers throughout the term to identify possible career pathways and associated subject choices.
Year 11 Chemistry students provided ninety minutes of learning and fun in the lab for Cathy O’Connell’s 5/6 class. To start the session, every student made a sample of PVA slime. Then the visiting students moved from group to group, sampling the delights of flying corks, sherbet, floating bubbles, exploding eggs, cornflour slime, elephant toothpaste, density delights and flying tea bags. Our students worked very hard, and were well-organised in the lab. The visitors had a great time. Our special thanks go to Silvana Stephens, without whose support and enthusiasm we could not undertake activities such as this.
An interactive discussion around ‘More than Square Eyes? Children and the Media’ was hosted by Uni SA, and, as a follow on from Dr. Sarah Blunden’s visit, a group of our students was invited to attend electronically. Students listened to a key note address by Dr. Samantha Thomas and then participated in a panel discussion by contributing questions and comments via twitter. The panel consisted of representatives from industry, the police, community , a year 12 student from an Adelaide school and researchers who research social media in young people. This was an exciting project for our students to be part of, and their contributions were warmly received. Sam Casey commented, ‘It is amazing to be able to talk to people from all around the world if we want to’.
Alan Richardson from ABC radio in Mt. Gambier came to talk to the Year 11 English students about the program ‘Heywire’.
There has been an on-going series of transition visits with students from our feeder schools visiting and participating in lessons provided by our staff. The form of these visits has varied from school to school, and has been designed to best meet the perceived needs of the individual feeder schools.
The combined Year 12 Chemistry class travelled to Portland to visit the aluminium smelter. The arrangements for our visit were made by Mr. Paul Pitman, Environmental Engineer, who spoke to students about his work and aspects such as monitoring smelter waste products and the conditions of EPA licences. Mr. Jim Harply, Senior Process Engineer, spoke to the students about the smelter processes and career opportunities in the industry. We were taken on a trip of the smelter and the recycling depot by Mr. Ron Jeffries. Such tours are no longer a routine part of Portland Aluminium’s operations, and we are very fortunate to be welcomed there.
National Literacy and Numeracy Week was marked with a range of activities. Mike Hentschke ran a words and numbers puzzle competition through Home Groups and Rhett McDonald organised a caption writing and speech bubble completing competition (even though he was at camp at the time). Amy Chesser ran a highly successful fifty word story writing competition, some entertaining entries from which appear on a separate page at the back of these notes. Scott McCulloch involved his Year 8 Maths student in the Australia-wide ’Reach for the Stars’ maths activity and Suzanne Gray and Mark Leslie attended the Literacy and Numeracy Expo held in Adelaide and focussed on literacy and numeracy in the new SACE.
Suzanne Gray and Bob Reece took the Year 10 students and some of the Year 9s to Grant High School to visit the Agriculture Centre where Scott Cram conducted a tour. Several of the students were excited by what they saw. Then it was on to Millicent High School where students looked at the new TAFE facilities including resources for Engineering, Automotive, and Doorways to Construction. The trip was designed to help students decide if they wish to participate in a VET program. Several of our students have now applied for VET programs for next year.
Eighteen pre-schoolers and attendant friends and family gathered to share ‘Noni the Pony’ and ‘Travelling with Granny Around the World’. Songs were sung with Rowena Fennell and the highlight was a petting, feeding and sitting upon Jackie Zema’s pony session. The children enjoyed making their own hobby horses to take home.
SSO Week provides an opportunity to celebrate the very great contribution which our SSOs make to student success and well-being and the smooth running of the school. This year, a combined morning tea with SSOs from our feeder schools was held on Monday morning.
The theme was ‘One World, Many Stories’ and students from Nangwarry and Kalangadoo Primary Schools, Mary McKillop School and the kindergarten visited. They listened to a story, looked at a display featuring homes and families around the world and spent some time in selecting and borrowing books.
Malcolm Anderson was a local identity and legend in his own time. A pivotal member of the indigenous community he gave fantastic support to the Education Department on many occasions over the years. Limestone Coast schools were asked to contribute food for his wake. Thanks go to Andi Zerk, Jo Skeer, Emma Dear, the year 8 class and selected other students who had finished work in other classes, who prepared an enormous amount of food to help cater for the funeral. Their contribution was much appreciated by the Aboriginal Elders and the wider community.
Thirteen keen students set sail for Adelaide late on Saturday afternoon after all sporting commitments were complete to visit the university Open Days. Our first stop on Sunday morning was at Flinders University where former student, Nick Kidman, (who is now doing a double degree in Environmental Science and Law) gave us an in-depth guided tour of the grounds and library. Then it was back to North Terrace with students electing to visit either or both Adelaide Uni and Uni SA. Students attended presentations and demonstrations and everyone found something of interest or value in the day. At Adelaide Uni, we were joined by Natasha Stent (another of our ex-students) who did a great job of ensuring that none of us became lost, and that we all got to the right place at the right time. The trip was a valuable component of our course selection process. Our particular thanks go to Rob Thornett who did a magnificent job of person-handling a rather challenging bus through the Adelaide Hills.
Dee Hutchesson took the Hospitality students to Melbourne. Here is her account.
Despite groans about the early start, the VET Hospitality class set off at 6.00am for Melbourne. Arriving at noon, we settled in and undertook our safety induction. Our tight itinerary included a range of industry visits from meeting with chefs, to visits to large produce areas such as Vietnamese groceries, Queen Victoria Fresh Produce Market and Shaw River Buffalo Cheese.
While in Melbourne, the emphasis was on challenging the students’ palettes with a range of foods from different cuisines and different styles of dining. Melbourne’s famous laneways were investigated and students were able to observe the different cuisines and eating establishments which attract large numbers of people throughout the day.
A highlight of the trip was the Chocolate Tasting and demonstration at Koko Black in Royal Arcade. The Master Chocolatier, Vincent, was very informative, explaining processes and differences between chocolates. We all tasted products we had not tried before and obviously found our individual preferences. Oasis Griffiths, who are a major sponsor of Café 43, provided an interesting insight into coffee beans, coffee roasting and espresso making. Alex allowed the students to select four different beans to make their own coffee blend and then the students produced cappuccinos using ‘their’ blend. Non-coffee drinkers actually enjoyed a cappuccino made from this blend and then we were very privileged to bring home 2Kg of this with us.
This was an excellent trip that was curriculum based but also fun as well. Everyone enjoyed their retail therapy time and I was very proud of the participation and the behaviour of our Café Team.
The SRC held a highly successful Quiz Night with about eighty people attending. An engaging and very challenging range of questions and activities was provided by Rhett and Sarah Polderman. Hannah Walker and Jack Schulz were the comperes and did an excellent job in this role. Sarah Polderman and Brayden Kelly were kept busy throughout the night, collecting answers and collating results. All who attended enjoyed themselves immensely. It was good to see that there were two tables of students.
Dr. Sarah Blunden, Senior Post Doc at Uni SA, visited to spread the good word about the importance of sleep and people’s, particularly young people’s, sleep habits. On Thursday evening she addressed a group of parents and community members, and on Friday she delivered two presentations to our students and addressed those at the primary school. Dr. Blunden made quite an impression on our students as evidenced by the conversations about sleep which occurred in the following days. Dr. Blunden was most interested in the wider life of our students and attended our SRC Quiz Night, which she enjoyed. We are hoping to work with her on a research project in term 4 or early next year.
Students from Penola High School were involved in the town’s observation of Long Tan Day. Rob Thornett took the Year 8 students to the park for the official observance, and Jack Gartner delivered an address he had prepared entitled ‘Vietnam – an Overview’.
Congratulations to Alex Male who received a Distinction and Nic Tonkin who was awarded a Credit in the annual Science Competition.
Congratulations to Heidi Hutchesson and Tom Moore who have both been awarded with an Order of Australia Citizenship Medallion. The awards will be presented officially on the 4th October at Government House. These awards reflect Heidi and Tom’s contributions through school leadership, the Sierra Leone trip and community involvement, particularly in sport, and in Tom’s case, the Show Society.
Our mid-term pupil free day was put to very productive use. In the first session, led by Mike Hentschke, learning tasks from a range of subjects were deconstructed to identify their numeracy content, the strategies students would need to use to deal with this content and, most importantly, ways in which teachers could support their students toward success. The rest of the morning was led by Kirsty Amos and took us into ‘Tactical Teaching’ territory where we looked at several methods to help students develop comprehension skills. In the afternoon, teachers were able to spend their time in planning to implement new ideas into their programs.
Over one hundred and eighty students in forty-seven teams gathered in our Hall to compete in the annual Mathematical Association of South Australia Maths Quiz Night. Students, teachers and parents travelled from Grant, Mount Gambier, Millicent and Naracoorte High Schools, Keith and Lucindale Area Schools and Tenison Woods College.
Throughout the evening students worked together to solve Maths problems, answer general knowledge questions, sort jumbled words and tackle an extended Maths problem There was much discussion, debate, friendly argument and enthusiastic conversation.
As well as providing a different setting for tackling Maths problems, the evening provided students with a great opportunity to get together and share a good time with friends Although members of our five senior teams and two junior teams were not among the prize winners, a good night’s fun was had by all.
The Men’s Shed was officially launched with considerable fanfare. This project has taken off with a delightful bang. The men who are using the Shed are happy with the arrangement and several of them are involving themselves with students undertaking our Tech program, to the benefit of both parties.
Year 10 students undertook a range of work placements as, what was for many, their first taste of work in the world beyond school. Students were well-received by their hosts, and came away feeling that they had learnt a lot and enjoyed themselves in the process.
Last Tuesday regional winners for the SA Public Teaching Awards were announced. When five members of our staff were nominated we were very excited. But the news gets even better! We now have two regional winners on our staff. Our heartfelt congratulations are extended to Kirsty for her award as an outstanding school leader and to Kristen for hers as a classroom teacher. This is great acknowledgement of these teachers’ personal abilities and contributions but also reflects the dynamic and dedicated community that is our school – students, parents, teachers and friends ‘out there’.
Representatives from UniSA and Flinders University addressed the Year 11 and 12 students to promote university attendance and provide much useful information about courses, application processes, and bonus points.
Senior students from Penola Primary School joined our students to listen to Sam Bailey tell his story. As a young man, Sam was involved in a car accident which left him in a wheelchair and his dreams in shreds. He has come to terms with his quadriplegia and, in the years since his accident, has achieved far more than many of us ever do. Sam’s story of overcoming his handicaps and building a fulfilling and adventurous life for himself is truly inspirational, and the students hung on his every word.
Olympic Park, Mt. Gambier was the venue for SASSSA Knock Out netball. The competition was well contested with 3 teams entering for Penola High School. All the girls did their best on the day with only a few minor injuries to report.
The Open Girls had four wins against Naracoorte, Grant, Bordertown and Mount Gambier High Schools and lost to Millicent in a hard fought game by a single goal. Maddi Seymour, Heidi Hutchesson and Victoria Lambert were outstanding in defence. Sarah Polderman, Meg Pfitzner, Monique Martin and Louise Burgess gave the team speed down the centre court while Natasha Hutchesson and Hannah Walker used team work in the goal circle, with no misses for the first 3 matches.
Year 10 Girls had a great day with the girls gaining confidence as the matches progressed. Brooke Klemm, Jade Lythgo and Melissa Middleton were stand-outs on the day, with great defence in all games. Tricia Hutchesson, Brooke Merrett and Jess Hayes shot some great goals while Georgie Freeman, Kara Martin and Laura Price supported them well around the goal circle.
The Year 8/9 Girls gained a lot of experience playing interschool competition netball. Reanna Weatherall was great as shooter with the support of Georgie Beighton. Amy Watkins, Kate Rowe and Ashlee Sullivan were fast in the centre third, while Hayley Williams, Emma Cadzow and Meg Sutcliffe tried hard to stem the flow of goals in defence.
Parent support was excellent. Thank you to Sue Hayes, Lene Lythgo, Sharon Freeman, Kathia Martin, Dion Klemm, Vicki McDonald-Burgess, Sarah Walker, Toni Cadzow, Michelle Weatherall and Ellie Wilson who all played large roles on the day to support our girls. Thanks also to Kristen Bence for coaching the girls and organising their participation on the day.
Mike Hentschke ran an informative Information Night for Year 10 students and their parents. The computer roll out was the first agenda item, with students then receiving their computers from Scott McCulloch (in Daniel Jolly’s absence).We are indebted to Daniel for the excellent job of setting up and maintaining the computers which he performs. Mike also explained the intricacies of the SACE certificate to parents, many of whom welcomed the opportunity to ask questions.
To mark NAIDOC week and celebrate indigenous culture, we were visited by Major Summers and the Tulkandjerri dancers who performed for the whole school. Major Summers explained the significance of the dances and the need to care for Country. The boys and men of the troupe performed a kangaroo dance, while the girls and women performed an emu dance. Our students were invited to join in, and several did so with enthusiasm. It was a great way to increase our knowledge of our First Peoples’ culture.
On Wednesday 7th July, Year 10 and 11 students attended a workshop run by an ‘Actor at Work’ from Australia’s premier Shakespearean company – Bell Shakespeare. Students who have studied or are presently studying “Romeo and Juliet” warmed up with some activities focusing on movement and dramatic expression before getting down to understanding how the play works. Various students volunteered to take on roles, following directions to give an impromptu performance for their peers. Highlights were the ‘party’ where the lovers meet, the mounting body count at the end and the delicate way in which students of both genders lowered themselves into the death position.
Students finished by creating tableaux characteristic of a variety of characters. It was very entertaining and students came away with a good overall picture of how “Romeo and Juliet” works.
To celebrate students’ achievements during semester 1 the Year 11 students attended a shared breakfast at Vintage Café. Students had a choice of excellent breakfasts and a complimentary orange juice, and Carol Marcus and her assistants made us feel very welcome. As well as each student recalling and sharing a personal achievement from the semester, we considered how working together could help us all to strengthen our performance in semester 2.
For some time now, Ali Bond has been working on plans to meet the literacy needs of our youngest community members and their families. Her plans culminated in the first ‘Pram Jam’ session which was acclaimed a great success by all those who attended. The sessions are based on the methods of Associate Professor Susan Hill to help build language and literacy skills before school. The mothers and babies sang and enjoyed action rhymes accompanied by flautist, Rowena Fennell. Ali Bond led the reading of ‘Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See?’ and Heather Stone prepared morning tea. ‘Pram Jam’ complements the ‘Kids Time’ program and is set to become a regular feature on our library’s calendar.
The SRC ran a well-attended social with both students and staff enjoying themselves throughout the night. Students ‘dressed up’ or came as geeks. Prizes were awarded for best dressed and best dancer and for best air guitar performance. These competitions were hotly contested and added to the fun for everyone.
Scott McCulloch coached the Senior Boys Basketball team. The boys had a great day out and won some of their matches.
On Monday 4 July, the school was abuzz with excitement as the Year 9 students presented the results of their research and the hard work they had undertaken during the Year 9 Initiative in the previous week. Kristen Bence organised the program to run efficiently and smoothly and was ably supported by a team of teachers who mentored the students. Students researched topics of personal interest, so a wide range of topics going from wine making, through dress making and cake decorating to photography and carpentry was researched. Students were able to visit work places in the wider community and to undertake a day of work experience if desired. The calibre of the final presentations was excellent and reflected the students’ learning journeys.
Our validation process culminated in a meeting with David Chadwick, our Regional Director and other regional educational leaders on 28th June. Members of the panel reviewed our documentation, listened to an address by Kirsty and spoke to school leaders, parents, students and staff. The response of the group on the day was overwhelmingly positive, reaffirming that we are heading in the right direction with excellent policies in place. The process provided support for our programs and some constructive suggestions for further development.
Students from all our feeder schools attended a round robin soccer tournament at PHS organised by Mark Leslie. Senior students were involved in coaching and supporting the players. Rhett McDonald cooked a barbecue lunch which was enjoyed by all.
The SA Public Teaching Awards aim to recognise and reward dedicated teachers, education leaders and support staff who have made an inspirational contribution to young South Australians. We are thrilled to bits that, in this inaugural year of the award, our whole school has been nominated. This public acknowledgement of our efforts by our community has given staff a considerable boost and encouraged us to continue with renewed vigour in our current direction. Individuals who were nominated were Kirsty Amos, Amy Chesser, Kristen Bence, Winsley Wighton and Daniel Jolly.
Congratulations are extended to Year 11 students, Ella Kidman and Natasha Hutchesson, who have been selected to attend this year’s Youth ANZAAS event in Brisbane during the forthcoming holidays.
Numeracy features prominently in our Site Improvement Plan, and the training day with George Booker was an important step towards achieving our desired numeracy outcomes. Staff from our school were joined by others from our feeder schools and Glencoe, Tarpeena and Melaleuca Primary Schoosl to hear George Booker speak about Numeracy. George is a knowledgeable and engaging speaker, who had much to say that was relevant to his attentive audience. His many valuable insights and suggestions were widely appreciated, as was the opportunity to work with colleagues from across the district. Our thanks go to Mike Hentschke, Paul Harmer and Tim Biggins for working together to bring this project to fruition. We also thank Vicki and Emma who fortified us with an excellent morning tea and lunch.
Andi Zerk organised a highly successful fundraising evening in support of the Home Ec. Departmen with $840 being raised. Guests were treated to a demonstration of Chef’s Tool Box wares and gastronomic treats prepared by Year 10 students. Each of the students had prepared a dish for guests to share and each one was well presented and delicious. . The students worked hard and were a great credit to themselves, the school and Andi.
Our students who went to Sierra Leone were nominated for an ‘Annual Vinnies Social Justice Award’, and have just learnt that their nomination has been accepted. They will attend a presentation ceremony in Adelaide in September. We congratulate Heidi, Monique, Ella and Tom on being South Australians recognised for their good works of social justice.
The Year 8 Drama class, under the guidance of Kathleen Phillips presented their production ‘Prisoners of Year 8’ to an appreciative audience of parents, peers and visiting primary school students.
A full school assembly was held to acknowledge Reconciliation Week. Three Year 9 students, Karly Dalton, Meg Sutcliffe and Lewis March spoke of the things that had surprised them while studying the removal of children as portrayed in ‘Rabbit Proof Fence’. Students listened attentively to Archie Roach’s song, ‘They Took the Children Away’ and to Kirsty Amos who spoke of the naivety of many Australians in relation to Indigenous Affairs and her own learning journey.
A large number of parents and students braved the cold and lowering clouds to contribute to our working bee. We are deeply appreciative of everyone’s willingness to donate their time and make a considerable effort. Much painting has been completed, and the grounds are in top notch condition. A special thank you goes to Vicki McDonald-Burgess for her organisation and whip wielding and to members of the Penola Lions Club who cooked the barbecue lunch.
An assembly was held to celebrate three outstanding sets of achievements. Firstly, Mike Hentschke presented Jake Rowe with a certificate marking his receipt of a 2011 Defence Technical Scholarship as part of the Defence Experience Program. The scholarship provides Jake with $2000 to put towards educational expenses. The application process requires considerable effort on the part of the student, and we congratulate Jake on his determination and application as well as his success.
Another student for whom these same admirable qualities and talent have borne success is Corey Gray, who has been selected for the State Under-16 Football Squad.
Finally, Rob Thornett presented certificates for outstanding performances in the National Australian Geography competition. Brooke Klemm and Caitlin Fulton both received credits, while Nic Tonkin’s efforts were rewarded with a distinction.
On Thursday of week 5 Mark Leslie took a group of Year 8 and 9 boys and girls to Naracoorte for the Upper South East 9-aside footy carnival. The two boys’ teams and girls’ team all managed to win one game each for the day. Once again the entertainment came from the girls with some aggressive tackles and dodgy handballing. Lewis March and Tom Price were the main goal kickers for the boys, while Emma Cadzow kicked a few for the girls. Reanna Wetherall and Kara Martin showed no fear when going for the ball, teaching the boys a thing or two on how to tackle.
On Tuesday of week 5 Eric Prelc took the open footy team to Naracoorte to play in a knockout footy competition. The team faced Naracoorte in the first game, losing by just 2 goals. In their next game they played exceptionally well to knock off the highly fancied Bordertown team. It has been a long time since beating Bordertown in school football. Best players were Jordan Galpin, Corey Gray, Nick Clayfield, Brayden Kelly and Brad Merrett.
During Week 4, the Year 11 students were able to participate in Work Experience, and nearly all of them took advantage of this valuable learning opportunity, with students being spread from Adelaide to Port Mac. Students were involved in a wide range of industries including wineries, hairdressing, health care, teaching and vetinary care. Reports received by the students were overwhelmingly positive, and we congratulate them on representing their school so well in the wider community. We also thank all those businesses which opened their doors so willingly to give our students this opportunity. Their gifts of time and effort are greatly appreciated.
Senior students from Nangwarry and the whole of Kalangadoo Primary School attended for two days as part of the transition program. They enjoyed soccer with Mark Leslie, photography with Kristen Bence, and drama and a library lesson with Rob. Thornett. The students from both schools participated in a soccer clinic, where they practised various soccer skills and games in preparation for the feeder schools’ tournament to be held on Friday 24 June.
The year 11 PE class took the reception to year 4 students from Kalangadoo for some fun games and activities. They worked in small groups to teach the students basic skills in throwing, hitting, catching and kicking. It was a very entertaining session. All kids both big and small, thoroughly enjoyed themselves.
A group of prospective parents and students attended this evening, which began with a school tour conducted by Kirsty. The tour was followed by a presentation in the library. Jack Gartner and Kaitlyn Thiele answered questions about their Year 8 experience put to them by Suzanne Gray. Kirsty spoke about the school, introduced relevant staff members and the new Year 8 Information Book. This latter was very well-received, and parents took the opportunity to ask many questions about our school and programs.
Many parents took advantage of the opportunity to meet with their students’ teachers to discuss their students’ progress. These meetings are valuable because, not only do parents receive first hand individual information about their students’ development, but teachers learn more about individual students and home-school ties are fostered.
Anzac Day was observed at PHS on the last Thursday of term 1. Year 10 students worked in groups to present reports on the Centenary of the Australian Navy and the battles of Crete and Greece. We were joined by RSL members Mr. Pat Wilson and Mr. Frank Ousey and by mayor Peter Gandolfi. Wreaths were laid by Mr. Wilson assisted by Jack Gartner and Kaitlyn Thiele and Mayor Gandolfi with Heidi Hutchesson and Jack Schulz. Chad Marcus read the Ode.
With students from Penols’a primary schools, Kara Martin and Hayden Lambert assisted Mr. Wilson in placing flags on the veterans’ graves at the cemetery.
At the Penola town ceremony, our school leaders, Heidi Hutchesson and Jack Schulz, laid a wreath and Caitlin Fulton read a moving tribute to the RAN which she had written.
The combined Year 12 Chemistry class gathered in Penola to spend a day performing analysis by titration. In the first session, all of the students determined the acid content of vinegar. This was followed by a summative standardisation of potassium permanganate solution. Finally students conducted an analysis of their choice, pooling their results so that everyone was able to experience the associated calculations.
Twenty-eight Year 11 and Year 12 students travelled to Naracoorte to participate in a simulated car accident presented by the Naracoorte-Lucindale Road Accident Prevention group. As well as students from Naracoorte High school who played major roles as the victims, the scene was attended by police, ambulance crews and CFS volunteers. The chilling enactment gave students much to think about. The mock accident was followed by a presentation in the Naracoorte Town Hall where students watched videos and listened to the mother of a teenage road accident victim a local doctor, and a police prosecutor. Many people worked hard to ensure the success of this activity and are to be acknowledge for their vision, passion and generosity.
The competition was held at Mt Gambier Gun club and 8 schools from the Lower South East and Western Victoria participated in a field of 120 shooters. Penola’s team of Jack Schulz, Tom Moore, Cory Marcus, Nathan Harrip and Kurtis Gillon came second to a Tenison team in the overall competition. They scored 25, only 3 points behind the winners. The team of Matt Merrett, Chad Marcus, Cameron Merrett, Brent Reddan and Gus Eckerman performed well to score 19. The girls’ team of Mykaela Glover, Sarah Polderman, Brooke Merrett, Jess Hayes and Natasha Hutchesson scored 7. Some had no previous experience so this was a credible performance.
Best shooters on the day were Jack and Cory who scored 6/10.
Snow and John Merrett deserve a big thankyou. They instructed the students at a special practice the Friday before and supplied their time, expertise, guns, shells and targets. This familiarised the students with the required skills so that nerves were not such an issue on the day of the competition.
SRC members Steve Frankling, Ella Kidman, Kara Martin and Melissa Middleton organised a highly successful ‘Hair Care’ day to raise funds for cancer research. Many wonderful and colourful styles were sported on the day, notably by Caitlin Fulton and Kurtis Gillon. The undoubted highlight of the day was the sacrifice of Mr. Hentschke’s beard. We are indebted to Ms. Melinda Moore for overseeing the final rites. A sum of nearly $200 was raised.
Late last year the PHS community collected non-perishable food items to support the Salvation Army’s Christmas Appeal Challenge. Our school donated more items per student than any other in the State, and received a shield presented by Mr. Mark Foyle JP in recognition of this achievement.
As part of our PHS ‘Bullying – No Way’ campaign, members of the SRC organised a whole school assembly. To begin with, students watched an anti-bullying video from U-tube. This was followed by Ms. Amos who shared a life experience story with us all. The SRC presented Jack Gartner from Year 8 with a Citizenship Award recognising his support and help of others. The final presentation was by SRC leaders, Heidi Hutchesson, Jack Schulz, and Sarah Polderman who spoke about bullying and uniform.In response to Anti-Bullying Week, our year 9 students under the guidance of Miss Bence produced an attention grabbing mura, erected in the foyer, which has occasioned much comment.
A squad of 37 students represented PHS at the annual Interschool Athletics carnival, which was hosted by Bordertown High School. Despite the wintry conditions, participants competed enthusiastically. The day was won by the host school, Bordertown, with Penola finishing in seventh place, narrowly behind Millicent High and well in front of St Martins Lutheran College.
The squad has since been in serious training for Santos, with team members focussing on their training.
The following students received top three placings at the Interschool Athletics Carnival in Bordertown: Corey Gray (1st., 2nd.,) Dylan Barlow (1st., 3rd.), Jack Gartner (2nd.), Jack Casey (2nd.), Hannah Walker (2nd), Sarah Polderman (2x2nd.), Mathew Hutchesson (4x2nd.), Jess Hayes (2nd.), Meg Pfitzner (2nd.), Natasha Hutchesson (3rd.), Dylan McMurtrie (2x3rd), Oliver March (3rd.)
The first Kids’ Time of the year coincided with Rob Thornett’s first appearance at these highly successful events. Along with Ali and Jo, Rob was dressed in the part of the farmer. Even so, he was upstaged by a collection of ducklings and Kim Wilson’s working dog. As well as sharing stories read by Rob and Jo and meeting the animals, the children joined in songs accompanied by Rowena Fennell on her flute. Kim shared her experiences as a vet nurse and Ali provided a wonderful workers’ morning tea of sandwiches and cake. The children also enjoyed the opportunity to make their own duckling, and some very colourful birds were produced.
The combined Year 12 Chemistry class travelled to the Kimberly-Clark mill at Tantanoola where they were treated to an explanation of the mill processes with an emphasis on the chemistry involved and a generous morning tea. Students visited the laboratory where they learnt about a variety of analytical techniques used and watched an expert perform a titration. Despite the rain, a site tour was undertaken, with explanations of the various features being linked to the students’ chemical knowledge. We are deeply indebted to Kimberly-Clark for their on-going support of our students and particularly to Stephen Say who has run these tours for our students over many years.
Nineteen students attended the Year 8 camp held at Hall’s Gap. The fine weather added to students’ enjoyment as they participated in abseiling, rock climbing and mountain bike riding. The students visited Brambuk Aboriginal Centre, where the highlight was instruction in boomerang throwing. Three students were very thrilled when they managed to catch the boomerangs which they had thrown. The warm weather meant that students were able to go swimming every afternoon before settling down to the evening chores of cooking and cleaning. The camp was declared a great success.
On the 8 March the Year 12 PE class headed off on a kayaking camp. We departed from the school at 3.30pm after school and arrived at the Murray Bridge sailing camp at around 7.30pm. Whilst on the camp we learnt many strokes such as the sweep stroke, draw stroke and support stroke. We also learnt how to capsize and how to rescue people. On Thursday afternoon we did a 10km paddle to Murray Bridge and back. This was followed by tea at Dundee’s Hotel where we had all you could eat. Once we finished stuffing our faces we went bowling in Murray Bridge which saw Tom Moore getting the highest score. We then headed back to where we were staying, but on the way, with lots of persuasion, we all had icecream from Macca’s. We departed from the sailing club at approximately 12 noon on Friday, and arrived back in Penola around 4.15pm. Overall it was a fun trip and a good learning experience which everyone enjoyed.
The instructors commented on the group’s ability to pick up new skills quickly and were also impressed with the positive interactions and cohesiveness amongst the group.
On Monday 7 March, the Stage 1 Chemistry students travelled to Rymill winery to explore the intricacies of wine-making at first hand. Mr. Bryan Tonkin conducted an informative and engaging tour. Students observed the process from de-stemming and crushing through to ageing in oak barrels, and were able to ask questions as they went. They now have lots of information which will be most helpful with their own wine-making project. Thanks go to Bryan for his enthusiasm and time, and to Bob Reece who drove the bus.
Following the running of the 1500m event on the previous Thursday week, our highly successful Athletics Carnival was held on Friday 4 March in very cool conditions, which, however, did little to dampen students’ spirits or enthusiasm. Many events were hotly contested, and House Captains and their helpers had done a great job of organising their teams. The SRC initiated a competition for the best dressed students and this led to a very colourful field as a large number of students participated, dressing up in the red, yellow, or blue of their team. Riana Knight and Jack Schulz were the best dressed winners.
Torilla were outright winners, scoring 686 points. They were closely followed by Moyanga (662) and Yalluminga (578). Age group winners were Jade Lythgo, Mathew Hutchesson (Under 14s), Brooke Klemm, Tylah Lovewell (Under 15s), Meg Pfitzner, Jack Casey (Under 16s), Monique Martin and Nick Clayfield (Open). Runners up awards went to Georgina Beighton, Jack Gartner, (Under 14s), Kara Martin, Luke Gray, (Under 15s), Sarah Polderman, Corey Gray, (Under 16s), Heidi Hutchesson and Dylan Barlow (Open).
About a hundred people gathered in the Hall to hear of the experiences of Rhett McDonald and four of our students, Heidi Hutchesson, Monique Martin, Ella Kidman and Tom Moore, in Sierra Leone. The audience sat spellbound as Rhett and the students spoke of their trip, their host students’ response to them, and their experiences of another culture. At the end of the formal presentations, many in the audience availed themselves of the opportunity to ask questions and much interest was shown in the fascinating array of artifacts which the students displayed.
On Wednesday 16 February, Naracoorte High travelled to Penola for Open Boys Cricket. Overall it was a great day with Penola High eventually losing by 20 runs.
Naracoorte High won the toss and chose to bat. Naracoorte started well with M. Cappelluti and J. Smith batting before Corey Gray dismissed Cappelluti for 17. From then on Penola struggled for wickets with M and J Smith building a solid partnership. The Smiths batted well to 1/104 until Nick Clayfield broke the partnership removing M. Smith (23). J. Smith continued to bat throughout the innings, finally out in the last over for 61. Naracoorte posted a score of 137.
Penola didn’t start well with Corey Gray out for only 1. Jack Schultz and Matt Merrett steadied forming a solid partnership before Matt Merrett (19) was dismissed. Luke Gray and Jack Schulz then batted well, with Schulz hitting some big sixes and plenty of fours before making his 50. Schulz was out not long after and Luke Gray (21) followed, as Penola continually lost wickets. A useful 13 from Keiron Lindner at the end helped Penola to get 117 before being bowled out.
Bowling: Cor ey Gray 3/27, Jack Casey 2/13, Nick Clayfield 1/30.
The annual interschool swimming carnival was held in Mt. Gambier, and fifteen of our students represented the school in a combined team including students from PHS, Millicent and Naracoorte High Schools and St Martins Lutheran College. PHS students who swam exceptionally well included Natasha and Heidi Hutchesson, Mathew Hutchesson, Hayley Williams, Cameron Merrett, Melyssa Steed, Laura and Thomas Price and Luke Gray.
The Hall was packed with students, teachers, parents and special guests for the Induction Assembly organised and conducted by the Year 12 students supported by Amy Chesser. Jack Schulz opened proceedings by welcoming our guests and delivering the Welcome to Country. Maddi Seymour introduced Kirsty Amos who, in addressing those present, reflected briefly on achievement and urged students to strive to achieve their best, and thus set the tone for the assembly. The 2011 SRC Co-Presidents, Heidi Hutchesson and Jack Schulz, summarised the long list of achievements of the 2010 Year 12 cohort.
Brent Reddan introduced Mr. David Clarkson of the Penola Masonic Lodge who introduced the ideals and philosophy of freemasonry to the students and then presented the inaugural Penola Masonic Lodge Futures Award to Cathie Cain in recognition of her contributions to school life and leadership and application to her Year 12 studies. This very generous award, of $500, will help Cathie to establish herself in a tertiary course of her choice.
Hannah Walker introduced Ms. Suzanne Gray who presented the Premier’s Challenge Awards to Ben Martin and Kara Martin for their outstanding performances in the Premier’s Reading Challenge in 2010.
Brent Reddan introduced Mr. Mark Leslie. Mark conducted the induction of the new House Captains and Vice Captains and spoke warmly of the good job they had done in preparing their teams for the swimming carnival.
Tori Dalton introduced Ms. Amy Chesser who then inducted the SRC Co-Presidents. Heidi and Jack inducted all other SRC officers and members. Mr. Mike Hentschke addressed the assembly on the responsibilities of leadership, and the new Presidents outlined the plans for 2011. The assembly was followed by morning tea for student leaders and guests.
A large audience packed the library to hear this year’s Lions Youth of the Year contestants undertake the public speaking section of the Quest. Before the challenging unseen questions were tackled, the three participating students presented their prepared speeches. Monique Martin spoke on Teenage Sleeping Patterns, Heidi Hutchesson chose ‘Teenage Girls and Low Self-esteem’ as her topic, and Tom Moore regaled us entertainingly with ‘The Value of Common Sense’. Heidi won both the Public Speaking and Overall sections of the Quest and went on to represent our community in fine style at the hotly contested District finals at Lucindale.
An information evening about the SACE for parents of Year 11 and 12 students was held in the library. Mike Hentschke addressed the meeting and left us all well-informed about the nuts and bolts of SACE while Amy Chesser presented information about the Research Project which Stage 2 students are undertaking for the first time this year. It was then time for the separate Year 11 and 12 groups to meet on their own, and parents appreciated the opportunity to ask questions and discuss issues.
A large group of Year 8 parents and students gathered for the start of year barbecue. Mike Hentschke spoke to parents and introduced staff while students enjoyed tennis and other activities. A tour of the school followed, and then the shared barbecue, which was enjoyed by all.
The weather was kind on Friday afternoon and a great time was had by all, both participants and observers. Participation rates were high, with the maximum number of swimmers in all but a handful of events. Team events were hotly contested and students supported their Houses enthusiastically. Torilla (230 points) led throughout the day, but was pipped at the post by Moyanga (231 points), with Yalluminga (180 points) not too far behind. A new record of 1.36.09 was set by the Moyanga team for the Junior Girls Relay.Division winners were:
The first two days of the students’ school year were devoted to an Orientation programme run by Year Level Organisers and Home Group Teachers. Programmes were built around topics such as team building activities, the behaviour code, study skills, SACE information, guest speakers, school values, and organisational information. Guest speakers for the Year 12 program included past students Cat Cain and Ellie Wilson who talked about their Year 12 experiences and gave helpful advice, and Ben Ramsay from New Life Counselling who discussed goal setting and the fundamentals of emotional / mental health. Daniel Jolly ran informative sessions on getting the most out of ‘Word’. A shared breakfasts at Vintage Café was enjoyed by all.
Year 11 students paid close attention to a session on employability skills provided by David Burt and Kevin Gritton, apprenticeship brokers. Past students Aimee Galpin, Cerise Cullen, Ellie Wilson and Cat Cain provided useful information and tips for making the most of the two SACE years. Mr Hentschke reminded students of the structure of the SACE and the compulsory units. Ella Kidman has returned to our ranks from her experiences in Sierra Leone, and she had students engrossed as she shared details of her overseas adventures. Daniel Jolly provided two extremely valuable and information packed sessions on working with Word and students applied themselves to goal setting. Ann-Marie Doman and Charlie Matthews, from GTE and David Goodman from mas national talked about alternate pathways for Year 11 and 12, and gave students some individual advice about traineeships and Australian School Based Apprenticeships. The students also enjoyed a delicious shared lunch at Vintage.
All teachers are most grateful to those ex students, service providers and members of the wider community who assist us in running the orientation programmes and making them engaging for students.
Suzanne Gray and Dee Hutchinson built the Year 10 program around personal skills and futures. Students were involved in activities designed to develop their organisational skills and persistence and in goal setting. Eric Prelc and Mark Leslie ran a ‘Rock and Water’ session which built on the foundation the students had developed last year in OK for Life. David Burt and Kevin Gritton spoke about apprenticeships and pathways. Students heard about the SACE and their Personal Learning Plans. A highlight was the shared lunch which the students cooked on the second day.
Year 9 students were kept very busy with a wide ranging program which included activities designed to strengthen friendships, build trust and develop problem solving skills. The students were introduced to the ‘Rock and Water’ program and did some goal setting. The Year 9 Initiative, which will be undertaken at the end of semester 2, was introduced, as was the term 3 kayaking camp.
Year 8 students were involved in a range of activities to help them find their feet in their new world of high school. They were introduced to key personnel in the school and involved in peer recognition activities and tasks designed to explore our school values. Rhett McDonald put them through their paces working cooperatively, and the importance of attitude was stressed. Students were introduced to the ‘Fish Philosophy’ (be there, choose your attitude, make their day, and play).
Nominations for House Captains were made early in the day on Monday, and nominees spoke briefly of their hopes, skills, and intentions. The elections were held after recess, and the elected leaders are:
The Thursday and Friday before students returned provided staff with the opportunity to organise for the year ahead. The highlight for staff from a training and development point of view was the introduction to ‘Tactical Reading’ carried out jointly with staff from Millicent High School. Kirsty, Mike and Alex Price undertook intensive training in this program last year, and had members of both staffs engaged as they presented a range of techniques for helping students to improve their understanding of the material they read. All staff have committed to trialling at least one of these techniques in term 1.
Teachers worked in Year Level groups to finalise their preparation for the first two days of school and plan for OK for Life. Learning Area meetings provided the opportunity to look at Unit Plans and Course Overviews. SACE data from last year was analysed and reviewed and teachers reflected on ways to make individual words accessible to students. There was also time for some individual preparation and the final activity was a shared social hour with the staff from Penola Primary School. Teachers have certainly hit the ground running.