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2 September 2016
During Week 5, Mrs Rowan Harvey-Martin and I had the pleasure of travelling to Perth with fifteen of the Gabriel Singers to take part in the Sisters of the Church Music Festival, an event held every two years.

We had a very busy but lovely time, joining with many other students from the other schools that were also founded by the same group of Nuns as our school.

SISTERS OF THE CHURCH MUSIC FESTIVAL 2016

During Week 5, Mrs Rowan Harvey-Martin and I had the pleasure of travelling to Perth with fifteen of the Gabriel Singers to take part in the Sisters of the Church Music Festival, an event held every two years. We had a very busy but lovely time, joining with many other students from the other schools that were also founded by the same group of Nuns as our school.

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Anne Coutts

FROM THE PRINCIPAL

Recent research has shown teenage girls are much more likely than boys to drop out of playing sport. This was more likely in a co-ed environment where girls’ embarrassment about their changing bodies, inadequate changing facilities, and the need for advice about good, supportive sports underwear were all factors that turned girls off.

The University of Newcastle has designed a new program DADEE (Dads and Daughters Exercising and Empowered) to try and reverse this trend. ISS primary age girls and their fathers took part in a wide variety of traditional and non-traditional sporting pursuits including hockey, soccer, touch football, basketball, tennis, marital arts and boxing. They also encouraged rough and tumble play and games to improve aerobic and muscular fitness.

During the eight week program fathers also learnt strategies for optimising their daughter’s physical and mental health. I was intrigued that the researchers specifically spoke about the negative impact of ‘pinkification’. They deliberately reversed this so girl’s shirts and drink bottles were dark blue and their fathers were pink. Not only did girls improve their sporting skills and physical activity but the DADEE program impacted positively on their serf-esteem and resilience.

At Canberra Girls Grammar School we have a very good participation rate in sport. Some students become elite sportswomen, some enjoy sport to stay healthy and enjoy the team environment. Both are encouraged here.

As we approach Father’s Day this weekend, maybe the DADEE program will inspire you to celebrate the day by going on a run or playing backyard cricket or rugby with your daughter.

Anne Coutts
Principal

Study finds fathers are key to girls wellbeing (2016 Aug 24)

Peter Milligan

FROM THE HEAD OF SENIOR SCHOOL

Service, authenticity and confidence were themes that emerged from a gathering held on Wednesday afternoon of Year 11 students considering a 2017 Senior student leadership position.

Mr David Blue facilitated a discussion and reflection session where, not surprisingly, a very impressive group of Year 11’s shared their insights into leadership. Current Senior Council members, Prue Tysoe, Emily Scott, Imogen Wilson and Eliza Ashton gave an insight into how the year has been for them as student leaders. The first round of nominations for 2017 Senior Council roles will close this coming Monday morning. 

Congratulations to Stephanie Jones (Year 10 Deakin), Rhea Laverock (Year 10 Robertson), Nicole Wang (Year 10 Kilburn) and Amna Ali (Year 10 Kilburn) who have made it through to the National Finals of the Australian Community Problem Solving Competition. At these finals they will be presenting their STEM projects to a team of evaluators, as well as teachers and students from around Australia. All the projects CGGS entered were invited to present – well done to all involved. Congratulations also to Skye Churchill (Year 11 Waverley) on her selection in the ACT Brumbies Women’s Rugby side which will be competing in Sydney next week.

This year we are moving the traditional Presentation Evening event to an afternoon event where Year 7 to Year 9 will be acknowledged for their 2016 academic and co-curricular achievements. The timing of the event, in previous years, has precluded many Year 10 and Year 11 recipients from receiving their awards – some are on exchange programs, Year 10 are on work experience and Year 11’s have been finished for a couple of weeks. The opening Academic Assembly each year acknowledges the Dux from the year before. This happens because we are not informed as to the Dux until the mid-December BSSS release of Year 12 results. To that end, along with the Dux, we will also present the Year 10 and Year 11 students with their academic and co-curricular achievements at the 2017 Academic full school assembly. This will mean these students are presented and acknowledged to the whole school community. The Presentation Afternoon this year will be held on Friday, 2 December from 1.30pm to 3.15pm.

Best wishes

Peter Milligan
Head of Senior School

Angela Whitaker

FROM THE HEAD OF JUNIOR SCHOOL

Is it only those born with talent that become great in their field and how important is practise and continual learning in helping us achieve our goals? These questions are important to reflect upon as the answers are at the core of developing a growth mindset.

I believe that effort and persistence are the most important ingredients for success and that we can only capitalise on our abilities if we apply ourselves. Most of us would have watched the Olympics recently and are preparing to view the Para Olympics. I absolutely love the advertisement for the Para Olympics that is playing with the “Yes I Can” message. Could our Olympians and Para Olympians have reached the Olympics without constant practise over many years and often in the face of adversity and setback? Of course not!

In his book Outliers, author Malcolm Gladwell claims that it takes roughly ten thousand hours of practice to achieve mastery or excellence in anything. He came to this conclusion by looking at a range of studies set up to see how extremely successful people had achieved in their field.

One of the studies Gladwell referenced in his book involved a team of psychologists in Berlin, Germany who studied violin students. Specifically, they looked at the student’s practice habits when they were children, teenagers, and adults. All of the violinists had started playing the violin at around five years of age with similar practice times. However, by eight years of age their practice times began to look different and by age twenty, the really great performers had done more than 10,000 hours of practice. The less able performers had only 4,000 hours of practice.

The great players had more than double the practice hours of the less capable performers.

One really interesting aspect of the study was that it claimed to have found - No “naturally gifted” performers. The researchers concluded that if natural talent had played a role, they would have found some of the “naturals” floating to the top with fewer practice hours than everyone else. But the data showed otherwise.

So why do some children choose to practise for significantly longer periods of time over the course of many years? The answer must be more complex than parents insisting practise happens, as I clearly remember struggling with my daughter and her avoidance of daily flute practise. Gladwell’s research indicates that at some point the person falls in love with their practice and to continual learning in their field to the point where they want to do little else. I saw this happen to my friend’s daughter who played the violin. In the first few years Jacinta enjoyed her violin lessons and would reluctantly practise, but without parental encouragement and support she would probably not have continued. At around ten years of age she suddenly began, according to my friend, to “really play music” and wanted to carry her violin around, practise and play constantly.

Gladwell’s research is not without its critics, but I believe there is a positive message that we can take away that relates to the power of resilience and persistence or “grit” in becoming really good at something.

Following Gladwell’s rule one approach could be that we choose something and practice for 10,000 hours. Forty hours per week over five years or twenty hours per week over ten years (almost three hours a day) would give us ten thousand hours.

Or…we could reflect on our interests and activities now and find where we’ve already put in time and effort. I spent countless hours horse riding when I was young. Where has your child already logged hours of practice and learning? What is it that they love and want to do really well? Your child may already be kicking a soccer ball, shooting goals, writing stories or playing the piano. Encourage your child to find a passion and then guide him/her through the inevitable challenges and times of wanting to give up.

Angela Whitaker
Head of Junior School

Tara Dunstall

FROM THE DIRECTOR OF STUDIES

Good luck to Year 12 students sitting the AST next week!

On September 6 and 7, Year 12 students who are undertaking an ACT Tertiary package will sit the ACT Scaling test (AST).

This test is designed to measure a range of general skills that are seen to be relevant to success in a variety of school subjects and to further education. Students’ AST results are used by the ACT Office of the Board of Senior Secondary Studies (BSSS) as part of the process of scaling students’ course scores.

The AST consists of three papers:

  • 80 multiple choice questions
  • a short response test paper
  • written essay (students will be given stimulus material on a particular topic and are then expected to write a clear argumentative essay of 600 words).

Students must complete all three papers.

Since the beginning of the year, the students have received weekly preparation in Problem Solving lessons. They have also sat three trial papers so are well prepared for the task. Like with any test, it is important that each of them are well rested the night before the test and that they have eaten well. With that in mind, a special breakfast will be provided to Year 12 students on Tuesday at 8.00am as a send-off from their teachers.

IMPORTANT REMINDERS:

The students must be outside the Hall by 9.00am for the first paper. They will not be allowed to enter the Hall after 9.30am.

The equipment they must bring with them in a clear pencil case or clear zip lock bag includes:

  • Pencils (2B, B or HB)
  • Erasers (clean!)
  • Pencil sharpeners
  • Pens
  • Ruler (clean!)
  • Photographic ID card

They MUST NOT bring:

  • Mobile phones
  • Calculators of any kind including Smart Watches
  • Electronic devices (eg iPod)
  • Thesaurus
  • Dictionaries with additional features (eg illustrations, diagrams, annotations, etc)
  • Electronic dictionary of any kind
  • Scanner pens
  • Bag or handbag
  • Hat
  • Food etc.

We wish them all the best with this task.

Tara Dunstall
Director of Studies

David Blue

FROM THE DIRECTOR OF PROJECTS AND PLANNING

Parent-Teacher Interviews for Students in Years 7 to 11

The Parent-Teacher interviews for students in Years 7 to 11 will be held over three evenings on Wednesday, 14 September, Monday, 19 September and Thursday, 22 September. Appointments will be available between 4.00pm and 7.30pm.

Parents are invited to make appointments for interviews through the on-line booking system PTO (Parent-Teacher Online). The system will be open from 5.00pm on Monday, 5 September 2016.

On Monday you will receive an email with a link to PTO, or you can access the site through the link on Canvas. The email also contains information to assist parents with accessing the system.

Please note that the cut-off time for booking interviews is 10.00am on the day of the interviews. This allows teaching staff time to prepare for the interview.

We look forward to the opportunity for parents and teachers to exchange information that will assist with the academic progress of their students.

David Blue
Director of Projects and Planning

On Monday, August 29, students from the Indigenous Focus Group volunteered to assist ANTaR to plant a Sea of Hands on the lawns of Parliament House.

The Sea of Hands was installed to support the aims of the Redfern Statement, which was issued on 9 June 2016.

INDIGENOUS FOCUS GROUP SUPPORTS THE FIRST 100 DAYS CAMPAIGN2 September

On Monday, August 29, students from the Indigenous Focus Group volunteered to assist ANTaR to plant a Sea of Hands on the lawns of Parliament House. The Sea of Hands was installed to support the aims of the Redfern Statement, which was issued on 9 June 2016.

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This time last year, Lucy was facing exceptional personal challenges. With one twist of her knee, Lucy tore her anterior cruciate ligament, ending her successful junior career on the netball court.

Lucy underwent surgery, which involved a section of her father’s hamstring being transplanted into her knee.

LUCY PIVA; A GIRL WITH GRIT2 September

This time last year, Lucy was facing exceptional personal challenges. With one twist of her knee, Lucy tore her anterior cruciate ligament, ending her successful junior career on the netball court. Lucy underwent surgery, which involved a section of her father’s hamstring being transplanted into her knee.

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2016 Wool4school Student Design Competition had more than 12 000 students enter. It is a competition that was initiated by The Woolmark Company and promotes merino wool. The student brief was to design an outfit for their favourite Australian sports team and showcase “the Aussie team spirit.”

WOOL4SCHOOL 2016 Y9 WINNER BIANCA ARMSTRONG2 September

2016 Wool4school Student Design Competition had more than 12 000 students enter. It is a competition that was initiated by The Woolmark Company and promotes merino wool. The student brief was to design an outfit for their favourite Australian sports team and showcase “the Aussie team spirit.”

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On Tuesday, 30 August, the girls who participated in soccer this year celebrated the end of season with a games afternoon and presentation.

In mixed teams ranging from girls in Year 6 to Year 12, small games were played to encourage team building and improve soccer skills. It was a light and enthusiastic atmosphere with all the coaches cheering and support the players.

END OF SOCCER SEASON CELEBRATIONS2 September

On Tuesday, 30 August, the girls who participated in soccer this year celebrated the end of season with a games afternoon and presentation. In mixed teams ranging from girls in Year 6 to Year 12, small games were played to encourage team building and improve soccer skills. It was a light and enthusiastic atmosphere with all the coaches cheering and support the players.

Read more
One of the key values of any Canberra Girls Grammar School student is our willingness and drive to help those in need and to improve the lives of others. 

On 16 September (Friday of Week 9), a group of girls travelling to Peru with the organisation Antipodeans will be hosting a movie night at Manuka Theatre for the viewing of ‘Pete’s Dragon’ - a story of an orphaned boy, Pete, and his best friend, Elliot (Pete’s dragon).

PERU TRIP FILM NIGHT - ANTIPODEANS FUND RAISING FOR PERU PROJECT2 September

One of the key values of any Canberra Girls Grammar School student is our willingness and drive to help those in need and to improve the lives of others. On 16 September (Friday of Week 9), a group of girls travelling to Peru with the organisation Antipodeans will be hosting a movie night at Manuka Theatre for the viewing of ‘Pete’s Dragon’ - a story of an orphaned boy, Pete, and his best friend, Elliot (Pete’s dragon).

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From 15-19 August, the Sports Captains’ Committee hosted the first CGGS Olympics. There were activities each lunch break and the school athletics carnival on Tuesday.

On Monday, students formed teams of twelve to participate in a competition of Tug O’ War. The winning team enjoyed their Olympic gold medals, which were extra special as they’re made of chocolate!

SPORT CAPTAINS’ CGGS OLYMPICS2 September

From 15-19 August, the Sports Captains’ Committee hosted the first CGGS Olympics. There were activities each lunch break and the school athletics carnival on Tuesday. On Monday, students formed teams of twelve to participate in a competition of Tug O’ War. The winning team enjoyed their Olympic gold medals, which were extra special as they’re made of chocolate!

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What do you call a group of penguins?

A) a waddle
B) a flock
C) a raft
D) CGGS English faculty

BOOK WEEK AND WABIAD2 September

What do you call a group of penguins? A) a waddle B) a flock C) a raft D) CGGS English faculty

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CGGS MAKES FINALS OF NGS NATIONAL VIRTUAL DEBATING2 September

Canberra Girls Grammar School will compete against St Peter's College (Adelaide) in the open final of the NGS Virtual Debating. Representing CGGS will be Year 12 students Laura Johnston, Breanna Lee and Amelia McGrath.

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1 January

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In light of the recent publicity in the media related to photo sharing, sexting, perversive networking and school students being targeted, Rohan Langford (Acting AP Pastoral Care) and Natasha Milde (Dean of Junior Students) of St Clare’s College have arranged a community presentation in conjunction with the Office of the Children's eSafety Commissioner.

ESAFETY WORKSHOP2 September

In light of the recent publicity in the media related to photo sharing, sexting, perversive networking and school students being targeted, Rohan Langford (Acting AP Pastoral Care) and Natasha Milde (Dean of Junior Students) of St Clare’s College have arranged a community presentation in conjunction with the Office of the Children's eSafety Commissioner.

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On Friday, 26 August, Waverley House hosted our annual Daffodil Day Market Day in the Quad at lunch, with all proceeds for the day going towards the Cancer Council. The Cancer Council will use our funds for crucial cancer research, patient support, cancer prevention and advocacy.

WAVERLEY HOUSE DAFFODIL DAY2 September

On Friday, 26 August, Waverley House hosted our annual Daffodil Day Market Day in the Quad at lunch, with all proceeds for the day going towards the Cancer Council. The Cancer Council will use our funds for crucial cancer research, patient support, cancer prevention and advocacy.

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Our last Family and Friends’ service is this Sunday at 5.50pm in the Chapel of the Annunciation.

I apologise for the clash with Father’s Day but because we were trying to keep the services on a day that was easy to remember, (the first Sunday of the month) and we had changed our regular time to 5.30pm from 9.30am we decided we could get away with it.

CHAPEL NEWS2 September

Our last Family and Friends’ service is this Sunday at 5.50pm in the Chapel of the Annunciation. I apologise for the clash with Father’s Day but because we were trying to keep the services on a day that was easy to remember, (the first Sunday of the month) and we had changed our regular time to 5.30pm from 9.30am we decided we could get away with it.

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Last Sunday, Zoe Rosin (Year 7) placed third overall in Level 5 (Senior) of the ACT Club Level Gymnastics State Titles in addition to receiving a gold in vault and a bronze for her floor routine. Zoe represented Southern Canberra Gymnastics Club and competed against twenty-five other gymnasts from the Canberra region.

STUDENT ACHIEVEMENTS2 September

Last Sunday, Zoe Rosin (Year 7) placed third overall in Level 5 (Senior) of the ACT Club Level Gymnastics State Titles in addition to receiving a gold in vault and a bronze for her floor routine. Zoe represented Southern Canberra Gymnastics Club and competed against twenty-five other gymnasts from the Canberra region.

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Earlier this year Grammarian Hana Sayers (2002) was named ACT Midwife of the Year 2016.

As per her feature in the Her Canberra’s ‘Women in Work’ Section Hana talks about what it was that made her want to study midwifery at the University of Canberra and what she does to support women and families during and post pregnancy.

GRAMMARIANS’ NEWS2 September

Earlier this year Grammarian Hana Sayers (2002) was named ACT Midwife of the Year 2016. As per her feature in the Her Canberra’s ‘Women in Work’ Section Hana talks about what it was that made her want to study midwifery at the University of Canberra and what she does to support women and families during and post pregnancy.

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