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John Barilaro Excellence in Education Award 2016

By School Updates

Margaret Hansen

Margaret has made an outstanding contribution to the performing arts at The Anglican School Googong since the school commenced in January 2015. In particular, as the music teacher, she has created a program for all students across the school which has developed their individual musical literacy. Her music classes are ones where there is always a plethora of activities in which the students become musicians.

Margaret’s goal is to encourage and educate the students to be truly musically literate, enhancing their musicianship skills, including their ability to create new music and perform with musical sensitivity. This is demonstrated on a daily basis in her music classes and across the school when you listen to the students sing. This singing may be in class, at assembly or in Chapel and is always a delight to hear.

In addition to her music classes Margaret has conducted the school choir which commenced this year and was highly successful at the National Eisteddfod where they received a gold award for their performances and as we saw on Sunday evening when the students led our school community in singing Christmas carols.

Margaret’s technical ability as a teacher, pianist and vocal teacher is outstanding. It is this obvious passion and technical capacity that makes her a truly outstanding educator and one whom we are delighted to have lead our music education program.

Authentic Assessment for Authentic Learning

By School Updates

Our Principal, Ian Hewitt and Junior School Teaching and Learning Coordinator, Claire Dalziel recently presented at the AIS ACT Celebrating Teaching and Learning event in Canberra. This event showcased many of the unique teaching and learning projects and programs which have occurred in AIS ACT member schools in 2016. The title of their presentation was Authentic Assessment for Authentic Learning. This provided all attendees with a snapshot of our approach to assess and provide feedback to our students and their families using our ‘learner profile’.

At our school, the teachers say to their students that we’re looking forward to getting you stuck and then helping them, as learners, to work out how to get ‘unstuck’. We are a school like no other in this region where:

  • Learning how to learn is essential
  • Where there are no bells and we have long learning sessions
  • Learning is in our vocabulary
  • We can say ‘learning in action, learning for real’
  • We can say ‘Googong learning, learning for life’

With authentic learning at the heart of our school, we use our learner profile to assist each student in their journey as learners. This approach, after just 2 years of the school opening, has received tremendous support and some fantastic comments from our peers.

Comments such as:

  • People need to hear this presentation
  • Inspiring and innovative
  • I love the language of learning and the use of this with the students
  • Social and emotional learning is great for ‘future’ students

Athletics Carnival 2016

By School Updates

Last week saw all of us travel into Wright Park Queanbeyan for our athletics carnival. It was a cool start to the day but with our 75m and 100m races first up we all warmed up quickly and the cheering certainly got us into the spirit for what was a great day.

Many of our parents joined us for the day and watched as we competed in javelin, shot put, discus and long jump over the course of the day. Competition was hard fought at times but there was a tremendous spirit of giving it your best shot.

Our day concluded with the 200m and 400m races which stretched many of the children as we finished what was a great day for all. Thanks to all of our students who competed and showed tremendous spirit and a big thank you to all of our parents who supported and cheered throughout the day.

Our Indonesian Dance Moves

By School Updates

We had a wonderful time with our friends Sophie, Arif and Rifa from the Australia Indonesia Youth Association ACT (AIYA ACT) who visited us last term. They explained to us about what it is like to live in Indonesia and also taught us some Indonesian dancing and singing. It was great to have them share their expertise about what is obviously a beautiful country who are only just ‘next door’!

Indonesians love to dance and sing. The dance we were taught is called ‘maumere’ (pronounced ‘mor-me-re’; roll the second ‘r’). This is a warm up dance which is used for exercise and group activities. We had great teachers but it was a bit tricky remembering the directions in the language Bahasa Indonesia (‘ke kiri’ – to the left and ‘ke kanan’ – to the right) as well as getting the dance moves right.

Book Week Adventures

By School Updates

What a great week we had during book week – a time to celebrate all that is great about reading. Our week started with The Great Book Swap. This is a fantastic way to celebrate reading locally, and raise much-needed funds to buy books for remote communities. All of our students brought in one of their favourite books to swap for someone else’s. The gold coin donation then went to the Indigenous Literacy Foundation to assist them fund books for remote indigenous communities.

We had many of students read to students from the Early Learning Centre each afternoon which was a delight to see. To see our beginning readers take these younger children under their wing and pass on that love of children reading is quite special. We also had our Year 1 – 3 students visit the Queanbeyan library for story time.

Our week concluded with a plethora of characters from many different children’s books was amazing. The creativity and imagination in many of these costumes made for great end to our celebration of books.

Archaeologist for a Day

By School Updates

Our Year 1 class spent the day on an archaeology dig in an area just south of our school near Montgomery Creek. We joined a team of archaeologists who are undertaking a study of a few sites to discover some of the earlier history of the Googong area.

As part of our Inquiry Learning, Year 1 has started looking at materials and their properties, what they’re used for and how they’re made: both natural and man-made. To further enhance our study into this we were ‘archaeologists for a day’ so we could use a new set of skills to understand who was here before us and what materials they used.

We learnt how to use our maths, science and art skills to dig our pits with the archaeologists and discover who may have been here from what they left behind. From just this small patch of land we could tell you a whole story from what we found. There were old saucepan handles, nails, iron and stones from a fireplace and even some old slate pencils in one of the pits.

From this selection of artefacts we learnt so much about what may have been here, perhaps even a small school with children our own age. What games did they play and what did they learn? What will archaeologists discover about us in 100 years?

Our Choir in Rehearsal

By School Updates

It was with delight that our choir parents joined us for our rehearsal on Thursday morning. We have been busily learning 3 pieces of music in preparation for the National Eisteddfod in September this year.

After just 8 weeks of rehearsal we are really enjoying the expert vocal training being provided by Mrs Hansen and have especially enjoyed singing Stuart Gillard’s composition of ‘Three Blind Mice’ which is featured in this short video clip.

Stuart Gillard is a wonderful Australian composer who composes mostly for junior school choirs like ours. It is wonderful to be singing his music which showcases our love of singing and is entertaining to listen to.

Our parents were amazed at the progress that our choir with Year 1 -3 students has made and we all look forward to hearing them perform at various times throughout the year.

Check out Stuart’s website for more details:

Googong Students Help Build New Park

By School Updates

It’s not often that a group of 5-9 year old students get a chance to help build a new park in their community. For the students at The Anglican School Googong though, that is exactly what they got to do.

Earlier this year the students designed and then painted 65 ‘totem poles’ which have now become part of Lovegrove Park in Googong. On Tuesday our students then got to give the new park a test run and all gave it a tick of approval.

With a wonderful variety of playground equipment to challenge and engage them it was wonderful to see our whole school out and about in this beautiful town enjoying all that it has to offer. We’re pretty sure that Lovegrove Park will become a regular destination for our students when they are out and about discovering and exploring the world around them.

Year 3 Camp

By School Updates

As part of what will become our Kindergarten to Year 12 outdoor education program, our Year 3 Camp took place in Jindabyne this week. The camp provided our students with a broad range of learning experiences which stimulated and motivated them while complementing what we do at school.

Students took part in fun group challenges and activities that promoted key learning through:

  • Relationships – developing skills in communication, problem solving, cooperation, negotiation, respect and care
  • Outdoors – nurturing an appreciation of the natural environment and sustainability
  • Action – reinforcing the importance of physical activity for wellbeing
  • Resilience – collaborating, negotiating and reflecting on difficult challenges to build courage and strength.

Over our 3 day camp we: blasted water rockets; rode slider trikes; learnt some great circus skills; were challenged with some initiative activities; aimed for a bullseye at archery; created our own lunch at our cook out; went rock climbing and slack lining and finished with the flying fox.

Swimming Carnival 2016

By School Updates

Do you remember your swimming carnival from your school days and how much fun they could be? On Thursday it was time for some fun, as well as some racing at the Googong pool.

Thanks to 7 weeks of swimming lessons with the YMCA Googong instructors, all of our children from Kindergarten to Year 3 were well prepared for their freestyle, backstroke, breaststroke and butterfly races. Our races were both 25 and 50 metre events with some kickboard races for those who still weren’t too sure.

Throw in some great novelty events such as: noodle races; ping pong fishing; egg and board relay and the sponge fill and you can see that we had heaps of fun at our swimming carnival!

A big thank you to all of our mums, dads and grandparents who came along to cheer us on. Then a very special thank you to Kate, one of our mums (who just happens to be a PE teacher) for organising and running our carnival with the assistance of some students from St Mary MacKillop College.