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Learning that Matters
Congratulations to Year 9 student Brianna B whose portrait of actor Johnny Depp has earned her first prize in the youth section of the Yakkerboo Art Show.
Brianna – an Art scholar at the Pakenham Campus – entered three portraits in the show last weekend, but it was the charcoal sketch of Johnny which caught the judges’ attention.
She won a $250 prize which she plans to spend on art supplies.
Students Olivia A (Year 10) and Maddy C (Year 11) also did well at the show. Olivia won $250 for tutelage by a local artist and also sold her work, which depicts a lion, for $70. Maddy’s painting she completed in Studio Arts sold for $65.
Brianna with her winning artwork
Education is the key to unlocking understanding of Indigenous Australia.
This is the core message of our Reconciliation Action Plan (RAP) which was launched at a ceremony held at the Pakenham Campus on Monday night.
The guests enjoyed a performance by Djirri Djirri (traditional Wurundjeri dancers), were able to sample some food made with ‘bush tucker’ ingredients and even saw our students present a play – in French – about some Dreaming stories. It was something quite unique.
I am very proud of the fact that our College, on the initiative of Indigenous co-ordinator and teacher Lynette George, has made this pledge to deliver learning of Aboriginal culture and history through the curriculum at all year levels.
For the non-Indigenous community, our information about Indigenous culture and history has been largely written and flavoured by Anglo-Saxon Australians. Much of what we teach has not reflected the true history of Australia.
I hope this Reconciliation Action Plan will help improve our students’ understanding of our shared histories and gain a greater appreciation of the contributions of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.
French language students presented their two plays on The Dreaming stories
Retired academic Hal Peck, from who the College acquired a large Indigenous book collection, chats with student Hailey G
Year 11 students have designed, built and battled their own robots in the Beaconhills College version of ‘Robot Wars’.
Robot Wars is a popular part of Unit 1 of the Systems Engineering subject, giving students a fun way to apply engineering principles and their learning about simple machines.
Pakenham Campus Systems Engineering teacher Mark Tory said the students loved battling their finished robots (with safety gear and under teacher supervision).
“This is an annual competition and a fun and engaging way for students to learn what could otherwise be dry concepts,” Mr Tory said.
Many students came up with some lethal weaponry and defence systems for their machines. Caleb F used a 3D printer to create custom parts to make a spinning circular saw, while Mathew S added pivoted dual circular saws to his robot. Aaron D included scissor lift for extra destructive height while Luke W sacrificed power for a fast robot that could evade others and make quick strikes.
During the project, the students gained skills researching parts such as motor specs, gears and cranks, learned about project management and testing and construction skills such as soldering, cutting and joining.
This year’s Robot Wars winners were James W, Aaron D and Cameron R, with James W the overall Year 11 champion.
Mathew S with his robot
Beaconhills College has launched a new series of tennis programs designed to cater for every player, across all ages and standards.
The flexible new 2016 programs give clear pathways for each child’s tennis development, under the guidance of Tennis Australia accredited Head Coach, Mark Stevens.
They fall into two categories.
General Coaching programs cover before, after school and lunchtime lessons as well as holiday clinics, private coaching and squad. Players progress through different levels as per the highly-respected ANZ Hot Shots Compression Ball System.
This year’s 5 and 10 hour weekly programs are a new option for players wanting to extend their skills with more intensive tennis. Individually-tailored programs can be fully integrated within the College’s high quality curriculum.
Beaconhills is calling for expressions of interest for both sets of programs. Download the 5 and 10 hour programs or the General Coaching programs forms to find out more.
Head Coach Mark Stevens
From the weird to the wonderful, the Year 9 ‘Personal Best’ projects never fail to amaze when they go on display each year.
The brief is simple. You have one school term to create a project that represents your personal passion. Along the way, you must document your work in a folio, including sketches, budget considerations, materials and tools used.
Berwick Campus students recently presented their projects to the Beaconhills community at the Year 9 centre. Once again the creations were as diverse and interesting as their creators.
There was everything from a horse made from driftwood, to a camera slider, a three tiered mosaic, a silver smelter, an off-road scooter, a video about Year 9 and a restored crane.
Phoebe H was proud of her driftwood horse and said she couldn’t believe it turned out so well.
“If I hadn’t done Personal Best, I wouldn’t have learned about my own time management and dedication, as it definitely took a lot of perseverance sometimes,” she said.
Lily E loves to read, so finally settled on ‘book folding’ for her Personal Best, creating beautiful works of art from old books.
“I liked the idea of getting something old and turning it into something new and different,” she said.
Beaconhills was the first school in Victoria to introduce an on-campus Year 9 program, in response to the observation that Year 9 was traditionally when students switched off from their learning – often the most unproductive of the senior years. The program became the blueprint for many similar programs in schools across the state.
You can see three of the projects here in a video by Year 11 student Bryce Peatling.
Member for Eastern Victoria, Daniel Mulino, officially launched the new ‘Fernleaf Room’ at Pakenham’s Little Beacons Learning Centre on Friday 13 May.
The room provides more places for families needing four to five-year-old early learning programs and caters for an extra 44 children.
Head of Little Beacons, Vicki Reid, said that with many parents working longer hours, there was a strong demand in the Shire of Cardinia for the centre’s programs.
“Providing integrated programs ensures children have access to high quality education, giving the flexibility of longer hours for working or studying families,” Ms Reid said.
“This is the area where we have the greatest demand and in the past we have been unable to accommodate all children.” She added the reduction in educator-to-child ratios had also led to smaller class sizes with a lower intake.
“The Fernleaf Room allows us to cater for more families in the year prior to children attending school.
“This is obviously very important for us at Beaconhills College where children transition from Little Beacons into our Prep classes at both the Pakenham and Berwick Campuses.”
The Fernleaf Room project was undertaken in partnership with the State Government of Victoria.
Little Beacons children sang songs for invited guests at the Fernleaf Room opening
Member for Eastern Victoria Daniel Mulino meets some of the children
Bipartisan support: ALP candidate for La Trobe Simon Curtis (left) with current La Trobe MP Jason Wood
Following the enormous success of our Pakenham Campus production of Hairspray, this week our Berwick Campus students have followed suit with their wonderful performance of Disney’s Beauty and the Beast.
Congratulations to all students who took part. You are a talented bunch! I think it is obvious to everyone in the audience what enormous satisfaction these productions bring to all of our students involved. Whether they are on stage, or behind the scenes helping with lighting, sound or playing in the live orchestra alongside professional musicians, it is an exciting and very worthwhile experience.
Pulling together productions of this magnitude is no mean feat. I would like to pay tribute to our Performing Arts staff who spend many hours during and after school to make it all happen. Many parents have commented that the shows have been of a professional standard.
If you haven’t yet seen Beauty and the Beast, it is still showing at the Berwick Campus this weekend and tickets are available through the College Shop on our website.
A scene from Beauty and the Beast
Berwick Performing Arts staff
Pakenham Performing Arts staff
Beaconhills College Year 8 student Joel Whitcher has won first prize and a merit award for two photographs entered in the Casey Creations Youth Arts Competition.
Two other students from the College’s Berwick Campus, Marc Pagliuca and Ashley Tormey, also received encouragement awards for their work.
Joel’s photograph ‘Through the eyes of my dog’ caught the judges’ eyes and earned first prize, with his macro photography work ‘After the rain’ receiving a merit award.
Using his new Nikon Coolpix L840 camera and a tripod, Joel encouraged his family dog to sit still long enough to photograph his own image reflected in the dog’s eye.
But he said his macro photograph of a leaf after rain was just a matter of being in the right place at the right time.
“I really like taking photos of water droplets – water is interesting,” Joel said.
His Art teacher Nick Zomer encouraged him to enter the competition and Joel was thrilled to learn he had earned the prizes. He plans to continue his multimedia studies at school next year.
The Beaconhills students will receive their awards at a presentation evening on Thursday 26 May.
Happy snapper: Joel Whitcher
Joel’s winning photograph
The Beaconhills equestrian team had an outstanding result at the Tintern Horse Trials on the ANZAC Day weekend, placing third overall out of 81 schools.
“This was a monster effort as it puts us in the top three schools, with Haileybury and Toorak College, on the eventing circuit,” said Equestrian Director Channelle Jenkins.
The team continues to strengthen this year, with 16 riders competing with good results on Friday 6 May at the ISJ (Interschool Showjumping) event at Ayr Hill. Beaconhills came fifth on the leader board – jumping up a massive 16 places – despite many riders unable to attend due to Middle School camps.
The weekend also saw four riders compete at the Ballarat International Horse Trials.
“Having two students place overall on two horses in front of Australian Olympic riders sets us up well to be sending these two riders off to Nationals in September,” Ms Jenkins said.
“With ISD (Interschool Dressage) this weekend ahead and a record number of riders attending we hope to increase our current position of fourth to at least a top three place, putting us in good stance for the rest of the series.”
Brooklyn G (Year 7) on her horse ‘Mouse’, modelling the new Beaconhills horse bonnet
Jai ho! Beaconhills will bring a touch of Bollywood to Pakenham on Saturday 4 June and it’s all for a worthwhile cause.
The Glitz & Glamour Charity Ball will raise funds to help support two schools and a kindergarten in one of the poorest parts of Bangladesh – Bhola Island. The College has long supported charity organisation CO-ID in its vital work in the region, building schools and kindergartens.
Held at the Cardinia Cultural Centre, the ball will feature a Bollywood dinner show with the ‘Bollydazzlers’, along with pre-dinner jazz and a 7-piece band ‘Paint the Town Red’ performing pop, funk/soul, rock and Motown music.
Organiser Fonu Emberson said Beaconhills’ inaugural Charity Ball held at the same venue last year was also a big fundraising success.
“Our 2015 ball was attended by 200 guests, raising more than $7000 for children’s education and community initiatives in Timor-Leste,” she said. “We hope to achieve an even stronger result this year.”
Tickets are $110 each or $1100 per table of 10 (including GST) with a three course meal, wine, beer and soft-drinks, entertainment, silent and live auctions. For more information, email email@example.com
The College is also looking for local business sponsors who would like to promote their trade or service. For tickets to event, or for details on sponsorship, go to the Beaconhills College Shop on the school’s website.
Students during the 2012 Beaconhills visit to Bhola Island, Bangladesh
Little Beacons opens at Berwick
Silver medal at the Australian All School Championships
Dux with a mission
Choice and diversity the secret to VCE success at Beaconhills
Student design chosen for exhibition
Caedlin gives hope for Christmas
Basketball state finalists
Samoan heritage connection through project
We’re a scouting school
Performing arts awards
Let your light shine
3 meaningful ways for alumni to stay connected
Public v private school funding
Reports that tell the whole story
What are your values?
A commitment to Indigenous education
Help shape our school’s future
Why we value chaplaincy
Recent events in Sri Lanka
A message of hope this Easter
Bushfires: thanks for your support
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Gate C, Syme Rd, Pakenham VIC 3810