Kia Ora Tatou
Whāia te iti kahurangi ki te tūohu koe me he maunga teitei
Seek the treasure you value most dearly: if you bow your head, let it be to a lofty mountain
Term 3 is now well underway, with three weeks completed. We began the term by welcoming over 25 new students to our school. While some were local, others were from other parts of New Zealand, and we also had students from Japan, Hong Kong, China, Vietnam, Brazil and Syria arrive. We were pleased to welcome them all to our College.
Kapa Haka Regionals
At the end of last term I mentioned that our students had been performing at the Kapa Haka Regionals, but due to the timing of the event I was unable to report on how they went. The students had been preparing for the day over the previous months and I was extremely impressed by their commitment and self-discipline. Considering they were going to be competing against the different Kuras it was always going to be challenging for them. However, they acquitted themselves extremely well and we received numerous compliments around the accuracy of their performances and the authenticity of what they produced. We were all immensely proud of the group.
Last week we had the Wa Ako Active Learning Showcase. Despite the horrible weather we had a good turnout of parents and the students were pleased to show and talk about what they had produced. The results were wide and varied, such as a computer generated orienteering course for the College, several fundraisers for worthy causes, undertaking an analysis of the school rubbish to determine how effective we were at recycling and one student created a croquembouche.
As an aside, when students are applying for jobs, scholarships or entry into restricted tertiary courses, increasingly we are being asked to comment how students’ problem solve, undertake community service, voluntary service or think creatively. Wa Ako is an excellent vehicle for students to pursue their own projects and meet the requirements described above.
Shave for a Cure
Last Friday 16 students and staff participated in Shave for a Cure. This was very altruistic of them and in the process over $10 000 was raised which is extremely generous. In some cases, students who had long hair were able to donate this for the making of wigs. I do not think many of them realised how cold their heads would be afterwards though, however this was tempered by the supporting of a worthy cause.
Derived Grade Examinations
The Derived Grade Examinations begin on Friday 23rd August and will run through the following week. All senior students sitting NCEA and some year 10 students will be involved. This examinations are extremely important. If a student is unable to sit their end of year examination the derived grade they will receive will be the one they get for these examinations. Reasons why students can’t sit their end of year examinations tend to sickness and family bereavements, however in the past we have experienced flooding and earthquakes which meant that students needed to use their derived grade.
The other thing to consider is that if students are properly prepared it will give them a good indicator of where they are up to with their learning and what they need to address before the end of the year.
In some cases, subjects such as Art and Hard Technology do not have examinations. However, time will be allocated to the class so that they can have a large block of time to work on their projects.
We are planning for 2020 and as part of this process students will begin to select their subject choices for next year. This process will be completed in about six weeks’ time. For the seniors, the Derived Grade Examinations will provide good information about how the students are progressing. Students in year 12 and 13 next year will need to have achieved certain pre-requisites before they can access different courses. The structure of our curriculum can be found at Newlands College Curriculum on our website. Option Booklets will be released shortly and we would encourage you to discuss your son/daughter’s choices with them.
Congratulations to Lauren Smith who is representing New Zealand at the World U21 Indoor Netball Championships which are being held in South Africa.
Winter sport is now coming to close with most competitions finishing by the end of the month.
Winter Sports Tournament starts September 2nd.
Nga Mihi Nu