- Issue 6: The Astonisher
- Daylesford Dreaming Writer's Retreat
- OIL PAINTING – ADDIS GRANDE
- Screen Printing – Christian Hodder-Packer
- Yarrawonga Golf Camp – SADIE KINGMAN
- Teen Chef 2017
- HELPING HANDS CAMP
- COMMUNITY ACTION PROJECT – ELLA ADAM
- Y10 BUSINESS STUDIES – MAYBEL GARDNER
- AVIATION – MAYBEL GARDNER
- Cross Country Ski Camp – Rupert O'Neill
- HORSE RIDING CAMP
- Mt Arapiles Rock Climbing Camp – DHISHNI DE SILVA
- Mt Buller Snowsports Race Team – Chloe Pollerd & Yuki Savage
- BEGINNER SURF CAMP – FINN RUSSELL
- Activities Camp Week
Issue 6: The Astonisher
Dear Parents, Students and Friends,
Enjoy this mere glimpse of some of the fun and diverse learning experiences from Term 3, in the sixth edition of ‘The Astonisher’.
It’s been yet another incredibly busy term, the highlight for many students undoubtedly being the Activities Week camps. Naturally, much of this edition is a showcase and celebration of some of these camps.
All the best for a wonderful holiday break!
Head of Woodleigh Campus
My heart feels as if it has been ripped into two halves. They left me with without warning, they just grabbed their stuff and left, the only word they uttered was ‘goodbye’. I can still hear the echoes of the door slamming in my face as I go to ask them what I did wrong, but it was too late. All I can hear is the slamming of wood and loud voices. I listen to the voices outside my room, I hear dirt being shovelled right next to my ear. I hear sobbing coming from outside. I go to reach for the handle, everything else falls silent. I am being held back, I can’t move, I can barely see and I can barely breathe. The last remnants of light I have are soon taken away and I am left alone in the dark, forever.
They will not be forgiven. They won’t be forgiven by the stolen generation, all the lives lost in wars, lost forests, reefs, extinctions and sending us back to sea. They will not be forgiven for letting so many innocent lives perish, for the dept., hatred, deaths, fear and lies they have brought upon us. Who are they? They are ourselves, we as human beings have done this, we have ruined earth and ourselves but we can try. We can try to save lives, stop the problems we have caused, change the world! We cannot be forgiven but we can make up for it.
As I walk down the street, everything seems to be moving to the music. The street art flawlessly replicates the lyrics, while each step hits the beat perfectly. My mind fills with joy, while the air of the city streets fills my lungs, but for the first time, it doesn't bother me. Being alive appears to be such a privilege. The world is cruel, yet all I can do is smile. People who walked past me turn to look again, as if happiness is so unusual in this day and age. I am as happy as a potato in a hotpot. My phone dies. The music ends. The sounds of life fill my senses. I remember how life really is, and I can't seem to hold a smile now.
ACTIVITIES WEEK – OIL PAINTING
ADDIS GRANDE, YEAR 8
For Activities Week I got into oil painting. I have always liked art so I was really excited when I found out that I was able to have this opportunity.
My three highlights were having the chance to draw/paint a nude life model for the first time – it was an extremely rewarding and fun experience. We had a professional painter who came in to help us with our paintings and he even brought in some of his own work and let us paint on it! And having the opportunity to completely immerse yourself in painting for a week was especially fulfilling.
All in all, it was an exceptionally gratifying and fun week.
ACTIVITIES WEEK – SCREEN PRINTING
CHRISTIAN HODDER-PACKER, YEAR 10
Screen printing is a well rounded, easy-going camp that is one week of creativity and indulgence. Many earbuds were inserted, concept drawings were drawn, and screens were printed.
Monday morning started with a demonstration about how to print. In the afternoon we were let loose on the art department and we tried our hand at screen printing. Screen printing is both a frustrating and rewarding process. A complex and extended phase of preparation must occur before you print, but is worth it when you print the perfect print, especially when it's on a t-shirt that you know you’re going to wear every day. We had a chance to try several different methods of screen printing throughout the week. Firstly stencils, then oil pastel prints and finally photo prints. I was stunned by the range of art produced by members of the class, with prints featuring music icons, ice-creams, dogs, sheep, ammine, stars, logos and much more.
My most earnest recommendations for anybody looking for a camp next year.
ACTIVITIES WEEK – YARRAWONGA GOLF CAMP
SADIE KINGMAN, YEAR 9
After an early start on Monday morning and a fairly long bus ride, we arrived at our camp in Yarrawonga. We quickly dropped our bags in our rooms, got changed into our golf wear and made our way outside.
We met Jimmy and Moony, golf pros, and they recapped the basic skills of golf for us. After having a few hits and making friends with others on our camp, we made our way to dinner. Dinners were always entertaining, and were great bonding time for all of us to get to know each other. We all got along really well and had a lot of fun together. The following four days, we played at least 9 holes a day. It was visible how much everyone had improved by the end and how much we had all grown a love for golf. I hope to continue golf and have a game occasionally with some of the people I spent this camp with.
TEEN CHEF 2017
ADELAIDE ROBERTSON, ZADE OMAR, VANESSA MCCAULL AND HAILEY BRACCHI – YEAR 11
On Monday 7 August we attended the SIS Teen Chef Competition at St John’s Regional College.
Our two teams were drawn from our Year 11 Food Studies class – Adelaide and Hailey cooked a dessert and Zade and Vanessa cooked a main meal. Each team had 30 minutes to prepare ingredients and then 90 minutes to cook the meal. The dessert team cooked a molten caramel cake with caramelised apple, crème patisserie with a spiced short bread crumble and toffee shards. The main team cooked kangaroo koftas with wattleseed flatbread and a red onion relish. We were awarded a bronze medal from the Australian Culinary Federation for our efforts.
If someone were to ask us for one word describing how we felt about the competition, we would say 'stress'. Before we even arrived, we were stressing so much about what we were going to cook. We spent many weeks trialling recipes, trying to nail them and create a meal we thought was impressive.
In the main kitchen... We stressed about whether we had forgotten any ingredients, or if we were not preparing correctly. After we got started things began to improve. There was a stage of bliss where everything was going fine, we were on schedule, we had cleaned some dishes and the things we had completed were looking good. That period of the cooking time was short-lived, however, as it was quickly replaced with panic, as we realised we had barely enough time to finish cooking the meatballs, and then get everything plated up. In the end it was okay, we got everything out on time and we cleaned up, and were in a state of gentle acceptance. We had fun and we knew our dish was good. It was just like a fun cooking time with your buddies, that we took very seriously because we wanted that gold medal. All in all, it was a good day.
In the dessert kitchen… We started by gathering our ingredients. We too were very nervous to start, and the waiting around for others to gather their ingredients only increased these nerves. However, once we started cooking we were fine. Everything went well, including the timing. The most stressful part was definitely plating up, and the molten cakes proved to be a struggle. As the middle was gooey caramel, it was hard to transfer them onto the serving plate. We did have one cake that collapsed, but luckily, we got to keep one plate to eat ourselves so it didn’t matter too much. Overall, it was a fun day and a great experience.
LACHLAN WHITE – YEAR 11
Those who walk by those with less,
Will never know them at their best.
But if you take time to sit with them in chat and prayer,
More of your own world you’ll become aware.
It is not by choice nor laziness that keeps them down,
Instead it is by blessing and good fortune we maintain our crown.
We are taught to take, but here we learnt to give,
Which raises us both to a life we will truly love to live.
When we choose to part with our time and wealth –
We find riches of a deeper sort,
An inner mint that renders all material value nought.
Through the help of others we aid ourselves,
To learn to love and grow.
So next time someone asks for help,
Resist the easy ‘no’.
TOM POYSER – YEAR 11
This camp really opened my eyes into a side of Melbourne I had never put much thought into. I’ll admit that prior to my first moments of volunteering I also, like much of society, had preconceived ideas about the sort of individuals that had to sleep on the streets – that they had brought it upon themselves. But I soon learnt, quite overwhelmingly, that this could not be further from the truth, rather, it could be some horrendously bad luck or mere circumstance. These people deserved a decent crack at life no less than us. What astounded me was the unwavering positive outlook these folk managed to hold, and really drove it home to me to realise how privileged we are to live in this beautiful world, with all that we have.
This week will stay with me for a long time, and I think I will look at undesirable circumstances in the future with new eyes in the knowledge that someone undoubtedly is doing it tougher me, and that the only way to make progress is to just smile.
SIENA GARDE – YEAR 11
This camp has helped me to develop more confidence within myself and to break down the barrier between the homeless and me. I feel as though I have developed a greater knowledge of the facilities the city has for the homeless and how much the people who are part of these organisations care about these people and how strong the relationships are that they build.
On the Wednesday night we went and served coffee to the homeless with Rosie’s Coffee Van and I was quite worried about the experience to begin with but I soon realised that they really were just nice people that have had some very unlucky experiences. I really enjoyed the night and the camp and I hope to volunteer with some of these organisations in the future.
COMMUNITY ACTION PROJECT
ELLA ADAM – YEAR 7
During Term 3, 7A did a Community Action Project where we chose an issue and did something about it. The project topics ranged from helping the disadvantaged, to gender equality, to illegal firearms in Australia and many more. First, we needed to come up with a Community Proposal and show Mr Stephens.
My project was about the ethical production of Woodleigh uniform garments. My goal was to see if the garments were ethically produced, and if not I would make a petition for parents to make sure they were. I started by talking to Mr Davenport about the current school uniform supplier and found out we had changed to a new company, Bob Stewart.
During the project, I had the opportunity to have a meeting with Ms Kaindel (Head of Community Partnerships), Mr Blew (Business Manager) and Ms Morgan (Head of Sustainability). I was able to sit in on a business meeting with Mr Blew and members from the Bob Stewart company. I was able to ask questions and find out lots of information about the company.
In summary, Bob Stewart has 38 suppliers in Australia and 15 suppliers in Fiji and China. All the socks they make are done by a machine, not hand sewn as it makes the fingers of the worker curl in. A representative of Bob Stewart personally checks the working conditions of these suppliers. He makes sure there is no child labour, there is air conditioning in the factories, workers get paid properly and believes they enforce better working conditions than the government does.
MAYBEL GARDNER - Y10 BUSINESS STUDIES
Last semester our Year 9/10 Business Studies class were given the task to complete a business plan based on an idea of our own choice. I chose to do my business plan on a topic that I am very passionate about, flying trapeze and circus.
My business is a Flying Trapeze and Circus school that is located on the Mornington Peninsula. The school provides classes of all aerial apparatuses including flying trapeze as well as ground based activities, Trampolining and Yoga. After working on this business plan for a semester, and completing over 3000 words of explanation, I had the opportunity to enter it into the CPA Plan Your Own Enterprise competition. Last week I was notified that I was selected to represent Woodleigh School as a finalist (Top 3 in Victoria). Later that week I presented my business to a panel of three judges in an interview style conversation in the CPA office located in Southbank in Melbourne. On Friday, I was notified that I had placed first out of the Victorian Finalists! Now I will be taking part in the Australia-wide competition in another interview for the chance to win the Australian title.
Click here to see Maybel's Business Plan – Just Fly: Stretch Your Limits
MAYBEL GARDNER, YEAR 10
On the 1st of September 2017, I participated in the Woodleigh Aviation program and as a result flew a plane for the first time.
In the beginning, we went through a series of processes checking the plane for damage, checking fuel levels, fuel purity and observing the overall health of the plane. Once we had the ‘all clear’ we began to taxi. Throughout this part of the exhibition, I was in charge of the direction of the plane by using the foot controls that I was newly exposed to. The seemingly easy task of driving a vehicle on a straight line proved to be more of a challenge than expected. After taxiing a distance much further than expected, we took off. The instructor encouraged me to get a feel for what he was doing with the controls and resultant altitude and angle of the plane but not physically act on it. Once we were airborne we spent about five minutes cruising around enjoying the stunning views that the Mornington Peninsula has to offer.
Then my time came. The instructor asked me to turn the plane left, right and make the nose move up and down. I was very surprised as to how little you had to move the controls in order to get a sufficient turn or lift. The instructor then took control once again and we came back down to land. Overall, this was a very unique experience and I hope to continue with the program in the future.
ACTIVITIES WEEK – CROSS COUNTRY SKI CAMP (DINNER PLAIN)
RUPERT O'NEILL, YEAR 7
At first, I’ll admit I had my doubts. During the intense pre-activity sessions with my muscles burning, I wasn’t entirely sure how much fun this camp was going to be. As soon as we arrived at Crystal Brook lodge however, any apprehensive thoughts were immediately abolished.
Both staff members and Mrs Adams (our X country ski instructor) were really kind to us and taught us how to do it really well. I was sure it was going to be long and tiring, and in a way, it was. But that's where the satisfaction lay. It was amazing to just be out there in the snow and be breathing in the fresh alpine air with a faint dusting of snow drifting down around us…
I do highly recommend this camp to anyone who enjoys a physical challenge and loves the great outdoors!
ACTIVITIES WEEK CAMP – HORSE RIDING IN THE HIGH COUNTRY
BY Imogen, Francesca, Niamh, Shanti, Lily, Charlotte, Victoria, Nicci, Dom, Hannah, Erin, Ali, Eliza, Isy and Anika.
My horse was…
- Really nice and cheeky.
- A little bit crazy. On the first day I found my horse walking and the next minute cantering away down a hill. I feel towards the end she calmed.
- Sweet and easy to get along with.
- A bit stubborn at times but really sweet and nice.
- Old and small. He didn’t like going by the rules and enjoyed going low under branches. He was sweet and loveable.
- Sweet and although we did not have a lot of time together I feel like we got to know each other by the end of the week. I miss her.
- On the moody side but I didn’t blame him as it was pretty rainy and frosty out. I still loved riding him, even though he was hard to handle at times. I would never change the experience and I will miss his cheeky attitude.
- Really sweet and easy for me to ride as I am a beginner. Even though she was stubborn at times, I got to know her well and will miss riding her greatly.
What I didn’t expect was...
- How nice it was.
- That I would make a blanket.
- That the family would be so involved when we were sitting in the house.
- That I would learn to knit.
- That everyone would knit so much.
- That we would have so much fun knitting and playing games.
- That the family would be so welcoming and lovely and that we all found things to do on the rainy days.
- That this camp would be so easy going. I loved the fact that we were able to take in the experience, no matter the conditions we all were able to learn more about things that we never considered.
- The camp to be so relaxed.
- The camp to include so much independence.
The McCormacks were…
- Nice and really welcoming.
- Kind, genuinely friendly and hospitable.
- Really lovely and kind for sharing their environment with us.
- Kind Hearted, warm and thoughtful.
- Generous and friendly and I felt comfortable in their home.
- Very friendly and accommodating. They made me feel very safe on my horse as well as around the camp.
ACTIVITIES WEEK – MT ARAPILES ROCK CLIMBING
DHISHNI DE SILVA, YEAR 9
Mt Arapiles Rock Climbing Camp was a beautiful, fun and communal adventure. Everyone was such a joy to be with, I made so many new connections with different people, from higher and lower grades, as well as the staff.
My main highlights were the nights after climbing and coming to a warm fire, we would chat and play games full of laughter and glee. The amazing rocks we climbed and new experiences were incredible, I’d gained so many new fantastic skills! There was also always a challenge out there to face, it might’ve been simply camping away from home, the height or tackling a difficult climb. Anyhow, everyone had one and we all faced them, we were courageous and adventurous! The sights were also unbelievable, the land was just so beautiful looking from above. After climbing a difficult climb to the top of Mt Arapiles, looking around and seeing the vast land surrounding me, I truly did get the feeling of pure bliss and triumph.
ACTIVITIES WEEK – MT BULLER SNOWSPORTS CAMP
CHLOE POLLERD, YEAR 7 & YUKI SAVAGE, YEAR 8
We all arrived at Woodleigh with bags in hand and snow on minds, ready to ski or board. A 4-hour bus trip that felt like forever was a great way to start the trip, but it was all worth it by the time we hit the slopes.
At 7am every day we all got up and by 9am we were ready to have our lessons. After 4 hours of learning new skills, we head in for lunch. We made our own toasties or had leftovers and fruit, then quickly head out again for free ski time. Most days we got back by 5pm and played board games, cards and watched movies around the lodge. By the time we had finished that, is was dinner time. We had meals such as lasagne, pie, tacos and pizza. By that time, we were normally stuffed and ready to have a good night sleep. Overall, camp was a blast and a great opportunity and experience.
Several students headed up to Mt Buller again the following week for the Interschools Competition and Jarrod Cameron and Harry Hart made it through to the Nationals Competition in the Boardercross and Slalom teams event. Harry won the gold medal in the Slalom and Boardercross individual events.
ACTIVITIES WEEK – BEGINNER SURF CAMP
FINN RUSSELL, YEAR 8
On Beginner Surf Camp, there was one thing that everyone got excited about: surfing! Although surfing was the main talking point of the camp, we also went mountain biking, kayaking and went for walks down the beach.
The people that instructed us in all of these activities couldn’t have been nicer and everyone really appreciated their help with the activities. During the week we cooked our own meals and cleaned up after ourselves which was a great opportunity for some people. Everyone was able to make heaps of new friends on the camp, especially because of the fact that the people on the camp were mixed between different year levels. Overall, we had a great time and would definitely go back and do it again.
A few snippets from a fun and adventurous Activities Week...
- Blackandwhite1 (Rose Illman)
- Blackandwhite2 (Rose Illman)
- Banksia (Alex Hyde)
- Bloody Ear (Maddy Balcombe)
- Blue Face (Oscar Mellor)
- Distorted Charlie (James Ward)
- Harper Street Art (James Ward)
- Irony (Charli Draper)
- James (Harper Tutton)
- Julez (James Ward)
- Keg (Tucker Hazel)
- Macaroons (Grace Cameron)
- Maddie (Harper Tutton)
- Naturemacro (Alex Hyde)
- Pastries (Grace Cameron)
- Rail2 (Julez Halpern)
- Shady (Alice Grant)
- Southern Cross (Lui Oberman Watkins)
- Water (Angus Fithall)
MT BULLER SNOW SPORTS RACE TEAM
MT HOTHAM SNOW SPORTS
YARRAWONGA GOLF CAMP
FUN, FOOD AND FITNESS
Bees Wax Wraps; Moorooduc Quarry; Point Nepean
Due to bad weather, the Aviation crew were unable to fly. They still had a fun week!
MOUNTAIN BIKE TRAILS (at the You Yangs)
HORSE RIDING IN THE HIGH COUNTRY
CROSS COUNTRY SKIING (at Dinner Plain)
DAYLESFORD DREAMING WRITER'S RETREAT
Urban Adventure Camp:
- Etihad Stadium
- Melbourne Bike Tour
- Melbourne Star
- Rock Climbing
- The Edge Eureka
- Victoria Market