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Learning how to care for our environment has a lot more meaning when you have first-hand experience with the animals who live in it. Giving our students first-hand opportunities to care for or engage with native animals is something our teachers have a passion for, from year 12 right down to our 3 and 4-year-olds.

Last week, Penbank Campus's Early Learning and Prep students had a chance to get up close and personal with a wildlife incursion with Brandon at WildlifeXposure. Along with learning all the creature features of Australian native wildlife, their food, and their habitat, students were offered the opportunity to hold or pat the animals.

Wildlife worriers? Not in this bunch. They're wildlife warriors.

While most of Senior Campus were recovering from Activities Week, the Woodleigh ski team hit the powdery slopes of Mt Buller for the Victorian Interschools Snowsport Championships.

The Woodleigh Snow Sports team have come back down from the mountain after 8 days at the Victorian Snow Sports Championship, and the news is good. No, it’s better than good; it’s phenomenal.

In a field of fierce competition, the Woodleigh team managed to finish 3rd in the state. If it were ever cool to brag you have ice running in your veins, it’s now.

Girls and boys; skiing and snowboarding; from year 7 right up to year 12, we had students across the entire team punching well above their weight and landing some epic results and podium finishes. All students should be proud of the way they competed, representing their school, their families and themselves with poise and pride.

To top it off, 14 students qualified for the National Interschools Snowsport Championships at Perisher in early September. Congratulations to: Rhett Clark, Tom Connell, Seb Ginsberg, Monty Dentry, Charlie Pullar, Chilli Stanton, Issy Cameron, Digby Taylor, Finn Jacobsen, Iz O’Connor, Esse Foley, Joe Foley, Owen Clark and Aaron King.

Massive thanks go to Bill Higgins, our Snow Sports Coordinator, for his long days on the mountain.

We wish you the very best of luck at Nationals.

​Yesterday saw the return of the SIS Athletics Carnival after spending 3 years on ice. Held at Lakeside Stadium in Albert Park, Woodleigh had a team of almost 100 students competing in Division A across Track and Field events.

The Woodleigh team ran, jumped and threw their very best, representing the school with guts and gusto. Students stepped up to fill gaps in events and challenge themselves against quality opposition.

It was also great to see a number of our Year 12 students wear the 'wood leaf' one final time at SIS level, led by Team Captains Lally Penna and Callum Lee-Smith.

Thank you to all students and staff for representing your school with pride and heart.

Activities Week is done.

And it's been a big one.
We've been flying planes, making believe, moving to music, riding waves, taming mountains, riding bikes, conquering walls, putting up pieces, making delicate treasures, throwing pots, catching fish, making games, cantering on beaches, meditating on mats, attacking and defending, teeing up and touring round.

You might say there's been something for everyone.
You might be right.

One thing that's for certain is that we're very, very happy to have Activities Week back.
It's one of Woodleigh's superpowers, and we can't wait for our families to share in the stories from this week.

Fake it till you make it? We much prefer ‘strive until you thrive’.

No one wants to be a pretender.

A contender? Sure, I’m up for that.

But to be in the game, you have to BE game. Sign up. Show up. Try. Do the work. Use your voice. Engage. Be humble. Ask. Listen.

Everyone’s version of thriving looks a little different, but the sentiment is the same.

How you show up matters, whether at school or on camp or beyond. These Senior Campus kids on day 4 of their 5-day Activities Week are doing their school, their families, but most of all themselves proud. Only one more sleep til they come home, tired, hungry and about 10 foot taller.

​Come day three of Activities Week and the challenges that seemed pretty daunting on day one suddenly seem a whole lot more manageable.

There's been a massive amount of skill-building – improvements to technique, mindset, approach and execution – and with those gains come giant leaps in confidence, sending kids off to their next challenge.

Staff see students in new settings, growing as learners and leaders as they find a new level of mastery, developing broader, more holistic, human perspectives and delivering better relationships between students and staff.
And that, folks, is one of the great beauties of Woodleigh School Activities Weeks.

​It's been 3 long years between Activities weeks, but Woodleigh sure knows how to make up for it.

From the fresh ocean beaches of Victoria's Surf Coast to the polished boards of Prahran dance studios, we've got small groups of Senior Campus kids engaging in all sorts of mind-expanding opportunities right across the state.
What do all of these camps have in common? A sense of adventure; courage to try something new; confidence to engage with kids and teachers you don't necessarily know; all far away from the comforts of home, and far, far beyond your comfort zone. The theme? Have a crack. Try your best. Support your new mates. Choose to be challenged.

What underpins the success of these camps is a culture of risk-taking. Whether it be chowing down on food you've never tried in a different part of the city, or allowing yourself to be immersed in a whole new environment, staff work very hard to create a culture where it's OK to take risks and make mistakes. If you don't make mistakes when you're trying something new, you're probably playing it too safe.

If you ever find yourself wondering, “What’s the perfect activity for the eighth day of a nine-day camp?” Then wonder no more, for I have the answer…

Get yourself to Buley Rockhole at Litchfield National Park, and park yourself in the water. Have a couple of jumps, (make sure to check depth and obstacles first), and let those fresh, clean, clear waters, restore your equilibrium.

Oh, and make sure to take photos of the smiling faces – there’ll be plenty.


A day for the Penbank mob to rest, reflect and consider what they have experienced during their week at Wugularr.
We're at Litchfield tonight - off to Buley Rockhole tomorrow to wind down before we head home from this transformational experience on Tuesday.