Words From The Road
I'm writing this week's article on the road as I visit the many and varied Senior Campus camps spread across Victoria. It has been an absolute pleasure and a privilege to spend a short amount of time with some of our Junior and Senior Homestead Camps. Each camp I visited had its own unique experiences in beautiful Victorian coastal towns and villages. And, yes, I did focus my tour on Victoria's coastline, from South Gippsland to Anglesea, a decision which may have been influenced by my passion for surfing.
There are so many great stories and reflections from this week, and I would like to commend Adam Liddiard and Marketing Trainee Harry Robertson for the wonderful social media posts we have all enjoyed this week. Homestead Camp Week has been an excellent reminder of the value of the experiences that students have here at Woodleigh. These experiences create opportunities for our students to further develop their relationships – relationships with each other, relationships with their teachers and their relationship with our country.
As a teacher, I greatly value the opportunity to spend time with students outside of the school environment, to see them through a different lens and also for them to see me through a different lens. This is how we create connections and enhance our sense of belonging to Woodleigh – our School and our home away from home.
As a teacher, this is also how I learn about our students' strengths, strengths that may not be obvious or relevant in the classroom. Things like sharing a Prom wave with Ben, Callum and Charlotte led me to realise how at home they are in the surf. Creating beautiful meals in a drizzly bush setting with the kids from Homestead 6, having been taught how to make gyoza from scratch, was a levelling, human moment. I found myself discussing the importance of crabs in a marine ecosystem and discovering dinosaur fossils with the students from Homestead 2. My Uno skills got a brush-up from the expert Uno players at Phillip Island as we discussed the merits of grilling crayfish for dinner. I enjoyed a tour of the fort at Queenscliff with Homestead 7 students and discussed the best technique for paddling a kayak with the gang from Homestead 4. These were my brief and limited experiences from the week, so I can only imagine the depth of connection our students have developed with each other and staff throughout the week.
Michael Norman's quote, "We ought never to do for young people, what they, with a struggle, could be expected do for themselves," certainly rang true this week. Students had to organise their accommodation, food and cooking; they had to support one another, and, most importantly, they were responsible for their outlook towards the week.
Whilst it is hard to imagine that there was much of a struggle for students in the magnificent locations they visited, each of them would have experienced some degree of challenge throughout the week. Something they hadn't tried before, working with someone they didn't know very well and having to work as part of a community for the week. Each of these challenges would have been an excellent opportunity for growth, and after the last two years, these experiences are more important than ever.
Back on Campus, the Year 9 and Year 10 students deserve congratulations for their work in the Young Change Agents program this week. I was fortunate to be a judge for their final presentations and was in awe of the passion and commitment they showed toward developing a social enterprise. I wish them well for their upcoming experiences at Hattah and Falls Creek. Both of which will build on their growth from this week.
Finally, my sincerest thanks go to our teachers, non-teaching staff and casuals who have worked tirelessly this week to create these amazing opportunities for our Senior Campus students.
Have a happy long weekend, and take this opportunity to rest and prepare for the final few weeks of term.
With rehearsals for Almost, Maine well on the way, the cast are busy preparing their lines and have started to rehearse. They meet with their scene partners at lunchtimes and every Thursday after school. When you watch our production, you will see all the hard work and effort that our cast has put in over the many months of rehearsals, but what you don’t see is the crew working extremely hard behind the scenes.
Woodleigh Drama Productions are almost entirely student-driven and run. For Almost, Maine, we have students working on our poster and hoodie design, costumes, lighting, filming, sound effects, original music, and marketing. One very big part of this production is the props. Luckily, we have an amazing props manager, Year 10 student, Maya Stubbs.
Maya has been working hard since rehearsals started. She has had to source unusual objects such as ice skates, vintage eskies and a snowball. Often props are one of the last things to be added to a show, but we need to source the props early, as we are planning to film the play next term as part of our COVID contingency plan. If we can’t perform Almost, Maine live, we will live stream the play.
Maya has spent a lot of time reading through the script to find out exactly what she needs to source for the show. Some of the props have been extremely hard to find, so Maya has had to use her imagination and develop ways to create them herself. One of the props that this production calls for is an oddly specific abstract painting, Maya was pushed out of her comfort zone creating this painting, but when you see the show, you’ll agree that she has done a stunning job.
This is what Maya had to say about being the Props Manager of Almost, Maine.
“I remember cautiously wandering into the first production meeting in the Drama Room at the end of last year. I jutted my hand up, over-enthusiastically, and blurted out questions about set and props… and before I knew it… BAM! just like that, I was handed the assignment of creating a painting for the show. The play called for a prop that had to be filled with texture, expression and gorgeous colour in a very specific modern style. The colours and textures clambered together, creating the perfect piece for the magnificent actors I had the privilege of working with.
I love making art… and I adore working in miniature. The tools I usually use to create my artworks consist of soft tip liners, 0.5 nib fine liners and detail brushes. However, for this brief, I was pushed way out of my comfort zone into the world of texture on canvas. I soon discovered the use of a palette knife required me to literally embrace the art of letting go.
My little journey tinkering, sanding and painting away on props has been time consuming, but also incredibly rewarding. I know that I have been able to make a significant contribution, sourcing and weaving together the eclectic pile of props needed for Almost, Maine.
Taking on the role of Props Manager meant I have had to be practical and also work really creatively. For example, I needed to work out how far to sand the styrene to make a snowball, and experiment with the right amount of glitter to recreate the reflective ice crystals that make snowballs so beautiful.
I’ve enjoyed every single second of helping out: creating, managing and contributing to making this production be the best it can. I can’t wait to see it all come together. Who knew that jutting your hand up awkwardly and blurting out incoherent words could result in such a fun endeavour?”
The cast and crew are excitedly working hard to bring this show to life.
Almost, Maine is due to be staged on the 24th and 25th of August 2022. Tickets will go on sale next term.
PHOEBE AZZOPARDI Y10
Maya Stubbs Y10
After COVID put paid to the original date, David Baker and Natalie McLennan invite all Senior Campus parents to Homestead Night
Homestead Night is a great way to get up to speed with your child's education at Woodleigh.
And despite the fact that Camp Week has already happened, we still want to give you the opportunity to come onto campus and meet your child's tutor and Homestead Coordinator, and connect with other parents in a social setting.
We look forward to seeing everyone on campus.
Unlike our usual Homestead Night event, this night will have less of a curriculum and camps focus, and instead, offer parents the opportunity to meet with Homestead staff and connect with other parents.
We hope all Senior Campus parents will be able to attend what we hope will be a fun and informative evening.GET TICKETS
In cultural respect for everyone who calls Australia home – Please join us for the 2022 Harmony Day Picnic at the Penbank Campus.
Join us at Penbank for the 2022 Harmony Day Picnic
FEATURING: Music and Dance by
• Jessica Hitchcock
• Stiletto Sisters
• Indigenous Outreach Project – Hip Hop
Sausage Sizzle, Food Trucks and Coffee Cart. BYO picnic rug and picnic.
No Glassware, No Pets and No Bean Bags. Thank You!