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Our Penbank campus ran for a cause last Friday.

Students from Prep to Year 6 did a sponsored Colour Run to raise money for Melbourne Zoo’s Orangutan breeding and enrichment program.

Three-quarters of the world’s Orangutan population call the rainforests of Sumatra, Indonesia home. This critically endangered species is under constant threat of extinction due to habitat loss at the hands of a non-sustainable palm oil industry. The fundraising efforts are an extension of the student’s Indonesian language and culture program and brings home the reality of this global issue.

We can all do our bit to fight their extinction by voting with our pockets, checking food labels, and refusing to buy products containing palm oil.

Tree huggers? Hardly.

Minimbah kids are fiercely competitive, particularly in Rubber Chicken Relays. Sports master Mr Roden has these kids whipped into shape, honing their animal instincts to smash in Sack Races, and dominate their inferiors in Tug of War contests.
No child is too small to be taught the ways of the Minimbahbarian*.

*The winner on the day was fun.

Penbank families were treated to a beautiful night of storytelling, music and dance as students from Prep to Year 6 presented their End of Year Finale, Dreaming with Open Hearts last week.

The finale showcase is a culmination of a year’s worth of learning, as students from each year level collaborate with their teacher and Arts Specialist staff to create a unique performance.

The evening concluded with a fitting tribute to Archie Roach as students sang ‘Song to Sing’, a song that inspires everyone to find their song and use their voice.

Staff and families celebrated the efforts, contributions, and achievements of the Woodleigh class of 2022 in a fitting farewell Valedictory Dinner at Frankston Arts Centre last Friday night.

Success looks different for each and every student, and we celebrate every one of their journeys as they negotiate their path beyond school and into the world. Whether they have plans to pursue further study or are following their chosen career path, we are exceedingly proud of them all and wish them every good wish for life beyond Year 12.

Here are the 2022 Woodleigh Faculty Prize Winners for academic excellence, from left to right:

  • Bridget Richards - English and Science
  • Nikki Sartori - Humanities
  • Tealia Holmes - Personal Development
  • Callum Lee-Smith - LOTE
  • Chloe Rosengrave - Design
  • Ben Black - Mathematics
  • and Milan Castan - Arts

Meet our 2022 Principal's Award winners, young people who have consistently given so much to the culture and life of Woodleigh School.
Here they are, from left to right:

  • Bridget Richards
  • Pippin Seagren Hughes
  • Cara Eades
  • Louisa Burton
  • Jacomo Dwyer-Morris
  • Nikki Sartori
  • Rupert O'Neill
  • Charlotte Gray

Massive congratulations to Tealia Holmes, 2022 Winner of the Woodleigh Prize.
In a school that 'does everything', it's only fitting that the prize go to a student who has done it all, representing the school in everything from Swimming to Debating to raising money and awareness of human trafficking for Blue Dragon Children's Foundation.
But above all, Tealia is a young person with compassion and empathy, and the skills and initiative to make a difference in the world around her.
Thanks for your enormous contribution to the Woodleigh community Tealia, and to the entire class of 2022. We send you every good wish for your future.

Some say history is a ‘dead’ subject. Well, that may well be true. It’s equally true that good history teachers have a magic for bringing the dead back to life. And that’s exactly what history teacher Tom Ryan did when he taught a year 7 HUMS class how to make a mummy recently.

Forget PowerPoints, quizzes and worksheets. Think real world learning with ‘real’ ingredients, like spaghetti, jars and toilet paper. Give the kids the chance to hear the noise of ‘brains’ being removed from the body through the nasal passage, careful to leave the body clear of any soft tissue so it can dry out and be preserved for posterity. How DID they remove those parts from the body, and why? What better way to engage kids in the how and why of an ancient civilisation and culture than by problem solving how best to wrap a dead pharaoh? If there’s a better or more fun way, feel free to fill us in.

This is a history lesson these kids won’t be forgetting any time soon.

Our Minimbah Campus was taken over on Monday, as Year 8 and 9 Indonesian students became teachers for the day in honour of Pesta Indonesia.

The big kids taught the junior kids in Indonesian, learning things like colours, animals, clothing and sports through a variety of activities, games and tasks. They also took turns playing songs on the ‘angklung’, a traditional bamboo instrument and playing ‘lompat karet’ traditional Indonesian elastics and skipping.

At lunchtime, the students shared an Indonesian meal, comprising of ‘dadar guling’ (green pancakes). Lunch was authentic Indonesian ‘nasi goreng’ (fried rice) and ‘mie goreng’ (fried noodles) along with chicken satay skewers! The report from the students was it was enak sekali (very delicious!)

Penbank Year 3, 4, 5 and 6 students recently got to walk a mile in another’s shoes...

when they had the opportunity to play Goal Ball. Goal ball is a ball sport played by vision impaired people where the object of the game is to roll the ball into your goal while your opponents try to block it with their bodies. The only way you know the ball is coming at you is the ringing of the bell inside the ball, ensuring a lot of defensive crawling, scrambling, and diving all while wearing eye coverings.

Despite feeling way out of their comfort zones, the students loved the experience.

It was the hottest ticket in town, with the event selling out in less than 24-hours.

The heat continued and then some at last night’s Spring Musicale. The theme was Heroes and Villains, as bands, soloists, ensembles and orchestras from Years 7 to 12 rocked, rolled and rhymed their way through a tight set list of songs from artists as diverse as David Bowie, Ngaiire, The Clash, No Doubt, Danny Elfman, and Rage Against the Machine.

Should you stay or should you go? You should definitely go, to the Woodleigh You Tube channel and watch the Spring Musicale in the comfort of your own recliner. In the words of Ian 'Molly' Meldrum, do yourself a favour!
Click here

Massive thanks go to the Music staff, the roadies, and the techies for putting on yet another stellar night of music in the Senior Campus Hall. Massive props also to the parents who believe in the value of music lessons.

Gold coin donations on the night helped to raise a whopping $484.15 for our community partner, Chumkriel Language School in Cambodia.

​ One of the golden rules of parenting is that kids who go away on outdoor ed camp come back 10 ft taller. If not in real-world, measurable terms, then certainly in confidence, life experience, and the capacity to tackle adversity.

Wet weather? Wear a waterproof coat.

Cold feet? Bring dry socks, and hang up your wet ones to dry.

Hungry? Try the food that’s offered to you.

And then there’s the memories made on camp, away from the known comforts of home. Red Faces concerts, epic Spotto rounds, and the chance to join the immortal ranks of Roden’s Icebergers as you enter the final steps of your primary school journey: this is the stuff of MInimbah legend, Rites of Passage unique to this very special part of the world. For these kids, it means reaching the edge of your comfort zone, and then bravely stepping over it, emboldened by the support of your peers and friends.

This was the experience had this week by our Minimbah Year 5s and 6s as they spent the week at Camp Licola. They’re home safe and warm now, full to the brim with stories to tell, right after they get a good night’s sleep.