MR MURRAY GUEST
The presentations of major works by our HSC Visual Arts and Music students was a remarkable showcase of broad and deep talent and it highlighted the growth and development we have seen in our Creative Arts Department in recent years. As I commented after the textiles and drama showcases recently, the presentation of creative arts major works brings a heightened exposure for the artist or performer as the often original work is presented to peers and family as well as the markers. This brings with it an experience that can only be beneficial as it drives motivation and the courage to dig deep to find personal expression. That personal element was very much on show last night as the artworks and musical pieces alike showed something of our students’ lives that might not have been seen otherwise. To witness that is a great privilege and those students are to be congratulated.
As I write, the Memorial Hall is full and buzzing with talented Year 7 and 8 students from around Northern NSW. What brings them together is their appetite for testing their intellect, creativity and teamwork skills as they tackle competitive tasks in fields as broad as science, ‘ideation’, poetry, engineering and drama. Few students, no matter how talented they are, will come with the skills and knowledge to shine in every one of the ten tasks and so this competition is all about balance and teamwork, making it all the more fun.
The Decathlon will run across three days, with Year 5 and 6 students joining us tomorrow and the Year 9 and 10 seniors competing on Friday. Our ability to host this Northern NSW event comes under licence from Knox Grammar which operates the state event each year and we again have ‘Old Grammarians’ with us this week to assist with the competition. I am grateful to them and, of course, to our Da Vinci Decathlon organiser Catherine Boydell who is again leading and driving this big event this year.
With just 10 days to go before our second STEM Academy Open Day at TAS, all appears ready to go and there is plenty of excitement about it. This is the chance for budding young minds interested in the STEM area to experience new cutting edge activities and express their creativity in areas as diverse as robotics, virtual reality goggles, garage band creations, slime making and Ooblek (non-Neutonian fluid). All the activities have been designed for different groups within the Transition to Year 8 range and all can expect to find something new, interesting and fun. Once again many of our staff have put their hands up to assist with the event and I offer thanks to all of them and, in particular, to Cressida Mort as the driving force behind the day.
I encourage all families of students from Transition to Year 8 to come along and join in the fun.
The Winter sporting season is now into its final weeks across all sports and this weekend will be a significant one for many players. With the GPS games completed, a good number of our rugby teams will head to Toowoomba for the final game of their season against Downlands College. Back in Armidale, local sporting competitions are into the finals stage and we have a large number of teams competing in semi-finals, including 5 of our hockey teams as well as netball and football teams. I know that all those competing will appreciate all the support they can get and I wish all those playing well for their games.
The past week has been a particularly busy one for our Junior School as students and teachers alike have been throwing themselves into new activities with our friends from Tezukayama Gakuin in Japan. They are now back at home in Osaka and it has been a pleasure to hear the reports of their time at TAS and how much they enjoyed the sharing of cultural experiences between our schools. Like any worthwhile activity, hosting a school from another country and culture takes plenty of organisation and commitment and I thank and congratulate all who worked hard to make the week the success it was.
At the same time, but in a very different activity, our Junior School students have been throwing themselves some fun fundraising as they skipped their way to raising more than two and a half thousand dollars for the Heart Foundation and that is worthy of congratulations too.
|Saturday 31 August||Rugby vs Downlands ( Toowoomba)
125 Celebration Event – Brisbane
Musica Viva – Armidale Town Hall (6.30pm)
|Monday 2 September||HSC Drama markers at TAS|
|Wednesday 4 September||HSC Industrial Technology markers at TAS
Foundation Board Meeting
|Thursday 5 September||Year 8 Parent/Teacher interviews
Parent Information Session (6.15pm)
|Friday 6 September||Year 8 Parent/Teacher interviews
Parent Information Session (11.45am)
125 Anniversary Melbourne Event
|Saturday 7 September||STEM Academy – 12.30pm-4.00pm
Rugby Dinner ( Tattersalls Hotel – 6.30pm)
MRS RACHAEL NICOLL
If you want to know what’s going on in the P&F join us on Facebook! We regularly post updates on what we are doing, what events are coming up and any other useful information that comes to mind.
We have our own Facebook page – use the keywords TAS Parents and Friends and then ‘like’ us.
Don’t forget each year also has their own Year Group Facebook Page… These are closed groups for parents to catch up on what’s happening… Please search for TAS Year 12 and then the year your class will graduate from Year 12. For example, this year’s Year 12 Facebook page is TAS Year 12 2019.
Finally, if you have anything you would like to raise with the P&F please either contact your Year Group Liaison Person or any member of the Executive or send us an email on [email protected]
TAS is turning 125 this year and the P&F are looking at celebrating this with a big event in November. If you would like to help us with the planning please feel free to come along to our weekly meetings. These will be held each Wednesday evening at 7pm in the Archdall Meeting Room in Big School. We have one tonight Wednesday 28 August. Please feel free to join us, all are welcome – food and drink are provided to get the creative juices going.
The famous TAS P&F Christmas Pudding bake is coming up and prior to that we need heaps and heaps of brandy to soak the fruit in – this is what gives the puddings that spectacular taste!! If you can donate a bottle of brandy please either drop it in at Main Reception or contact Pudding Co-ordinator Heather Williams on [email protected]
Pudding baking will be on Saturday 19 & Sunday 20 October (TBC).
Our next General Meeting is on Wednesday 11th September 7 pm. Everyone is welcome and we would love to see you there.
To view the minutes from the July P&F Meeting and Agenda for the next meeting click HERE
Mrs Rachael Nicoll
MRS SEONIA WARK
The deadline for year 11 initial preferences is on Friday 30 August.
Year 10 students have received an email inviting them to submit initial preferences. Subjects should be listed in order of preference so that Mrs Wark and Mr Guest are able to determine the best lines for 2020. After the lines have been determined students will receive another email and code inviting them to make their final subject selections. If you have any questions in regards to making subject preferences or access to submit preferences please contact Vickey O’Brien – 6776 5806 or [email protected]
The Stage 6 Subject Handbook can be viewed through the following link:
Stage 6 Handbook
Note regarding Metals and Engineering:
The Stage 6 elective choice of VET Metals and Engineering has been been under review from Stakeholders in Industry, VET and NESA.
As a result of that review, NESA announced last Thursday that the course will no longer be able to be counted towards an ATAR. The course still has Industry support and alignment for School Based Apprentices and Trainees, but will now vary in that, students who are wishing to achieve an ATAR will need to continue with 12 units of study through till the end of year 12 of which 10 of those units are able to contribute to an ATAR. More information about the reshaped course will follow as they are to hand but we ask that you bear this in mind when considering subjects for 2020.
Year 8 Parent Teacher Interviews are scheduled to be held next week – Thursday 5 September (3.30pm – 6pm) and Friday 6 September (2pm – 5.30pm)
Information and the parent webcode have been emailed to parents to organise suitable times with your child’s teachers. If you have not received this information or webcode please contact Mrs Vickey O’Brien – 6776 5806 or [email protected]
Two Parent Presentations will also be held – one on Thursday evening 5 September beginning 6.15pm and a repeat session on Friday 6 September at 11.45am.
Please indicate to Mrs Vickey O’Brien which session you will be attending – [email protected]
Mrs Seonia Wark
Director of Studies
The TAS STEM Academy aims to promote and encourage student interest in, and passion for Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths. We are very fortunate at TAS to have so many teachers who genuinely believe in the benefits of cross collaboration and integration between subjects that it allows us to offer so many electives and activities focussed on STEM. The natural synergy between the interdisciplinary subjects in the International Baccalaureate of the PYP in Junior School and MYP in Middle School, make TAS a natural school to embrace all that STEM offers.
It gives me great pleasure to update all our parents and students on some of the initiatives we have planned for the STEM Academy.
Mrs Elaine McKellar
TAS STEM Co-ordinator
A number of our Mathematics, Science and Technology teachers including myself were lucky enough to be part of the Sydney University STEM Teachers Enrichment Academy day on Friday 23 and Saturday 24 August. The Sydney University program is one we have been partnered with since November last year and it has been invaluable for cross collaboration of ideas from STEM teachers across the region. The aim was to present our progress here at TAS to other partner schools and to hear what they are doing to promote and encourage interest in the disciplines of STEM.
We are all very aware of the importance of STEM for our students’ futures; they need to have a solid understanding of these subjects to be successful in a world where technology, maths, engineering and science are increasingly providing employment opportunities. This teacher enrichment program is ideal for building our capacity in this area and we have been privileged to be part of this program.
Back for another year after a successful first venture in 2018 is the STEM Academy Open Day on Saturday 7 September open to all Junior and Middle School students. The afternoon begins with a free barbeque and then a host of activities aimed at students from Transition to year 8. Our wonderful staff are demonstrating STEM in action and I encourage all students to come and participate.
This year we are lucky to be joined by the CEO of Agerris who will be here to demonstrate the Digital Farmhand with the assistance of some of our year 8 students. Agerris have lent us their Digital Farmhand robot this term so students can learn about more about coding and digital technologies that assist with farming. TAS is the only independent school to have this honour so we are making sure we are getting the maximum use out of this sophisticated agricultural robot.
Dr Mary McMillan and her team from UNE Science will also be with us on the day along with Dr Sonja Dominik from the CSIRO.
Come along for activities including F1 In Schools (Formula One car racing), Coded drones, 3D printing, the Augmented Reality Sandbox, Oculus Go Glasses, ooblek pit, liquid nitrogen ice-cream, virtual reality, Slime and the science behind the Bubonic Plague and much more!
Looking forward to seeing you all there!
Mr Allan Moore
MR WILL CALDWELL
Summer sports won’t start in earnest until the beginning of Term 4. However, we do need to get organised now and I appreciate parents reading the attached document and discussing choices with their son/daughter. Sport is a valuable part of a TAS education and provides physical, social and emotional benefits. Students will lodge their choice with their Advisor / Homeroom Teacher by next Wednesday, 4 September.
Every student from Years 5-11 must select ONE full sport. An extra sport may also be selected once the training schedule for full sports is determined (week 9). If you have any questions regarding your choice, please contact the MIC of that Sport. If you wish to participate in an external sport you must email [email protected] seeking approval.
Senior students are encouraged to lodge expressions of interest to coach Junior teams, under the supervision of an academic staff member. This is a very rewarding experience and a tremendous boost to the TAS sporting program. Please email [email protected] if you are interested.
Houses will compete in the following inter-house events over weeks 7, 8 & 9.
Senior School Public Speaking, Tuesday 3 September, 10:35 – 11:20am
Netball, Wednesday 4 September, 3:45 – 5:30pm
Middle School Public Speaking, Thursday 5 September 1:15 – 2:00pm
Basketball, Wednesday 11 September, 3:45 – 5:30pm
Touch Football, Wednesday 18 September, 3:45 – 5:30pm
Students who are selected to represent their House will be excused from Passing Out Parade Practice – spectators are not excused.
MR ANDREW O'CONNELL
Last night we had both the Masterstroke and Final Note showcases, and they again proved to be incredible displays of both the breadth and depth of artistic talent we enjoy at TAS. The exhibition of the Visual Arts Bodies of Work was held in the foyer, and it was remarked countless times how very different each artwork was, with students speaking with such a personal artistic voice through their work. Ms Fiona Xeros has helped encourage some amazing pieces from those Year 12 students, and with their submission date on Monday I am sure we will see those works develop even further. Immediate following the exhibition was a concert that gave our HSC Music 1, Music 2 and Music Extension students one final opportunity to share their incredible gifts with an audience of friends, family and peers. Again, while the range of instruments and music styles was staggering, a consummate professionalism united all pieces. I congratulate those students on their fine work, acknowledge the contributions of a great many peripatetic teachers, but particularly highlight the dedication of Mrs Bekk Baumgartner and Ms Leanne Roobol and their tireless efforts encouraging these HSC students every step of the journey. To all our Creative Arts students I wish you the very best for the submissions and performance examinations in the coming weeks.
Deke Sharon is an American singer, arranger, composer, director, producer and teacher of a cappella music and is one of the leaders and promoters of the contemporary a cappella community and a pioneer of the contemporary a cappella style. He has been referred to as “the father of contemporary a cappella” by Entertainment Weekly. Deke is visiting Australia and will take time out from his busy schedule to visit Armidale……. don’t miss this once in a lifetime opportunity for music educators and students to work one on one with this extraordinarily talented musician and teacher.
Deke has his a cappella fingers in many pies, arranging music (Broadway’s In Transit), music directing movies (Pitch Perfect 1, 2 & 3), and producing television’s The Sing Off (US, Holland, China, South Africa), music directing BBC’s Pitch Battle, directing professional groups (Vocalosity), performing (TotalVocal at Carnegie Hall), coaching (Lifetime’s Pitch Slapped) producing albums (Straight No Chaser) and events (Camp A Cappella), publishing arrangements with Hal Leonard, while teaching and promoting a cappella worldwide.
MR MARK HARRISON
It’s coming soon and all students have been made aware of the practice times. Please be aware of the schedule as missing times can cause frustration for students, staff and everyone really. The concept behind the parade is to farewell not only our Year 12 cadets, but all Year 12 students really. It’s important you know that any absence needs to be accompanied by direct communication with the school as this activity is compulsory for all and I don’t want our students getting into strife because you’ve not communicated with the school about unexplained absences. I realise that this is a strong message – but your children are our students and I don’t like seeing them getting into trouble in situations where avoidance of trouble is something we (staff and families) can eliminate.
The ‘tests’ will be enjoyable and challenging and I know staff, particularly Catherine Boydell (our end) are investing so much time into the week. Each year seems to host more students than its predecessor and yet everything seems to run smoothly nonetheless.
I wished students well at the beginning of the week in our Town Meeting Assembly. Our best wishes go to all our Middle School Years 6 – 8 teams that will compete in the da Vinci Decathlon. In 2019 the number of competitors is strong and we look forward to hearing of these students’ management of the various challenges ahead. In the past, our people have acquitted themselves well.
This week’s whole school assembly was a celebration, being the school’s recognition of NAIDOC Week. It was a good assembly too: music complemented dance and Clarrie Moran and members of the Armidale community conducted the whole affair with sensitivity and good grace and I was so happy to be there as your representative here. Our students were the dancers and it was very clear that they not only enthusiastic but really well rehearsed. There really are so many advantages attached to working in this place, you know.
Over the last few weeks it was boarding staff and student contributions – this week our Middle Years’ Curriculum Coordinator, Mrs Rachel Piddington, is communicating with you about important International Baccalaureate matters. Now that we are almost entirely an IB school these are so important, in fact, that contributions from Mrs Piddington will become pretty regular.
There are clouds in the sky: one day, one day…
Mr Mark Harrison
Head of Middle School
As many of you may be aware, we are implementing the International Baccalaureate’s Middle Years Programme, and we are currently a candidate school.
The International Baccalaureate (IB) Middle Years Programme (MYP) is an educational framework that encourages students aged 11 to 16 to make practical connections between their studies and the real world. At a time when students are establishing their identity and building self-esteem, the MYP is uniquely designed to offer a well rounded education and help students achieve success in school and in life.
The MYP ensures breadth and depth of understanding through study in eight subject groups (language acquisition, language and literature, individuals and societies, sciences, mathematics, arts, physical and health education, and design). Addressing the intellectual, social, emotional and physical well-being of students holistically, the MYP prepares them to take principled action by participating in service within the community and requiring study of at least two languages (language of instruction and additional language of choice) to support the understanding of their own cultures and those of others.
MYP students also engage with big ideas, rather than simply memorising facts in order to prepare for exams. As a result, they develop learning skills that they can rely on throughout the course of their independent, purpose-driven lives.
At the core of the Middle Years Programme is the learner themselves. The MYP aims to develop the following Attributes in Learners:
The MYP is structured under six global contexts and also has 16 Key Concepts at the heart of the teaching and learning, which will be explored in greater detail in next week’s TAS Talks.
Mrs Rachel Piddington
MR IAN LLOYD
Well…….. it was a whirlwind while it lasted. Now that the Tezukayama girls and boys have returned to Osaka, I would like to reiterate my thanks to all those involved. What a wonderful opportunity all our students have experienced. Without the full support from our families, friends and staff the exchange simply would not be possible. I thank you all.
Firstly, Allan Moore, Anna O’Connor and Sandra Lasker were instrumental in the organisation and preparation of the visit while all our teaching staff accommodated extra students in both their rooms and their programming. To our billeting families, I would like you to know that the feedback from both the visiting children and their staff was nothing short of outstanding. Your care and generosity was mentioned to me on many occasions and the Staff from TEZ were at pains to ensure that I thanked you all. Everyone appreciated your support. Quite frankly, it made me proud to be associated with a School whose community can be so united and supportive. I apologise that we ran out of food for the Wednesday evening BBQ….it was fully supported, great fun and a true reflection of the wonderful feeling that currently exists in Junior School. I hope to see many more of you in our playground this Friday for our Father’s Day luncheon.
More will be mentioned next week in TAS Talks but it is timely to mention the hard yards Year 5 are taking to work towards their PYP presentation in a few week’s time. The culmination of this term’s research and presentation falls under the Transdisciplinary Theme – “Where We Are in Place and Time”. Each group’s project is quickly taking shape and I commend them all for the progress they are making. In talking to their mentors, it is clear that these students are facing challenges that are outside their comfort zone. In preparing their Exhibitions, they are presenting not only their work over a number of weeks but themselves and their collaborators, in a new and challenging exercise. In their final week of preparation, we encourage them to stick with it and look forward to being with them as they unveil their work. Without requiring a “spoiler alert”, I have included a number of photos to whet the appetite.
Once again, Junior School students have excelled themselves with their fundraising efforts. With over 30 students working to raise funds, it was fantastic to see our whole playground inundated with students (and the occasional teacher reliving old dreams) skipping by themselves and in groups. We had 8 students who each raised over $100 (Katie Hynes, William Cooper-Fillios, Levi Watts, Jacqui Dubois, Chloe Dennison, William Dennison, Chelsea Miller with our top fundraiser being Arabella Blanchard) and in total, $2567.47 was realised. Congratulations to all those involved.
Mr Ian Lloyd
Head of Junior School
|Wednesday 21 August||TEZ Farewell Assembly (All welcome) 2pm Hoskins
TEZ BBQ – JS Undercover area from 5.00pm
|Thursday 22 August||TEZ depart (morning)|
|Friday 23 August||Jump Rope Off|
|Wednesday 28 August||Transition Assembly – Hoskins Centre (2.45pm)|
|Friday 30 August||Father’s Day – Sausage Sizzle and lunchtime games (12.25pm)|
|Wednesday 4 September||Year 2 Assembly – Hoskins Centre (2.45pm)|
|Saturday 7 September||STEM Academy Open Day (12.3opm)|
|Tuesday 10 September||Year 5 PYP Exhibition Opening|
|Wednesday 11 September||Year 5 PYP Exhibition Open for Junior School
Year 5 Assembly – Hoskins Centre (2.45pm)
|Wednesday 18 September||Transition Assembly – Hoskins Centre (2.45pm)|
|Thursday 19 September||Student Led Conference|
Kindergarten are continuing to embrace an inquiry approach to learning as they explore the transdisciplinary theme sharing the planet. They have had many opportunities to ask ‘big’ questions connected to their central idea: “Changes in the environment impact humans and other living things.” They are exploring this idea through investigating different environments, considering the needs and uses of living things and by working out how seasonal changes impact environments.
Kindergarten have put their creative art skills to impressive use and have transformed their display boards to replicate different environments. Thinking skills have been put to the test as different environments have been classified. Learning how to use a table to organise data has made for easy sharing of new knowledge.
The Kindergarten classroom is certainly a very positive and fun-filled learning environment.
Mrs Veronica Waters
Official results have now come through from the NCIS association. TAS Junior School came 5th overall out of 13 schools and 2nd in the Primary/Points score. An outstanding result for a small team of Athletes. Congratulations also to Charlie Ward who broke the Girls 11 year Discus record, beating the old record of 24.10 held since 2009 with a throw of 24.20. Charlie also received 3rd place in the 11 year girl Champion.
Congratulations to the following students who placed during the day:
Junior High Jump – 3rd Sam Ford (1.10m)
Junior Shot Put – 2nd Sam Ford (7.41m)
Senior Long Jump – 3rd Millie Coupland (3.72m)
11yrs Discus – 1st Charlie Ward (24.20)
11yrs Shot – 3rd Charlie Ward (7.59m)
Millie and Sam have decided to compete at the next level (CIS) in Sydney on 12th September at the Olympic Park Athletic Centre. We wish both Millie and Sam the best of luck.
Congratulations also to the following students who recorded improved times on the day:
As our Winter sports draws to a conclusion please be mindful that training will cease when the competition has concluded. Please refer to the last game dates below, unless involved in semi-finals, in which case your child’s coach will inform you of training dates and finals.
Please keep in mind that we will be asking for children’s Summer sports choices next week. All information on available sports, costs and days of training will be in next week’s TAS talks.
TAS White U12s
On Saturday, we played in Uralla against the Uralla Tigers. Uralla scored the first goal, but we worked hard as a team and managed to score two goals, one in the first half and one in the second. Well done Mohammad! A special thank you to Susie Hynes who stepped in for Mr Thompson who was busy at a STEM conference in Tamworth. Mohammad and Blake worked tirelessly with excellent support from the entire team. Cormac and Hugo from Year 4 once again played back to back games and we could not have fielded a team without them. A special congratulations to Tom Rowe who did a fantastic job in goalie and saved many attempted goals. The final result was Uralla 5 TAS 2 but as always, we loved every minute of the game.
Mila Downes and Katie Hynes (Year 5)
TAS Tigers U6s
TAS Tigers certainly played a tremendous game of soccer on Saturday morning. It was such a rewarding game for all players and wonderful to see the skills, which have been the focus of training session being put to good use throughout the game. The number of short passes and players remembering to dribble the ball was impressive. All players tackled with increased confidence and their focus was certainly the best it has been all season. Well done to TAS Tigers for your first win of the season!
Mrs Veronica Waters
TAS Tornadoes U7S
The Tornadoes on Saturday played extremely well against the South Stallions. Their sportsmanship on the field is amazing, taking turns for the big kicks from the sidelines. Baxter was unparalleled when it came to stealing the ball and taking it down the field. We also had some fantastic goals by Rudra, Zander, Rupert and Will. Both Evelyn and Humjot were amazing supporters passing and assisting their teammates.
Congratulations to the Tornadoes!
Ms Belinda Macri