High Notes, Vol 13 No 17, June 08 2012
From the Principal
GPS Heads Meeting
Years 9 and 12 will take place on
Years 7 and 11 will take place on
Years 8 and 10 will take place on
Booking interviews with your son’s teachers
This year we will again use a web based electronic scheduling system for arranging interviews. This produces better results for all participants, especially more compact time schedules for both parents and teachers. The system works as follows –
Creative Writers Ahoy!
Do you enjoy writing and want to win prizes such as an Apple iPad for your efforts?? Well the ‘Lionel Bowen Young Writers’ Award’ is now open and is a popular writing competition for anyone aged between 7-18 years!
1) Short story: with a maximum of 2,000 words. Poem: maximum of two typed pages.
2) Short Play: The play should be in one act and should comprise a maximum of five typed pages. (For further details see website).
Prizes: certificates of excellence, Apple iPads, Apple iPod Touchs, books, and much more!
Closing date: 30 June 2012.
Many congratulations to Christopher Chiam and Robert Sternhell who have been chosen to be part of the NSW Debating squad. This means they rank as being in the best 12 debaters in the State and will represent NSW in interstate debates this year. Well done, boys. Robert and Christopher form part of our Year 12 PDC team who are in the regional Finals at Parliament House on Friday. Good luck to them. Meanwhile Years 9 and 10 both won their debates against Moorefield Girls on Monday and Years 7 and 8 will begin their round of PDC debates on Wednesday.
Years 7-10 have begun conducting trials for their GPS teams over the past two weeks. Thanks to the boys' enthusiasm, we have a large number of students trying out and trials are being conducted over multiple weeks. The final team selections will be based on their performance in the selection debates, as well as their performance in coaching so far this year.
Given the quality and interest shown by all the boys, it will be a tough choice for the coaches. Each student is being seen by a panel of coaches from their Year group and some coaches have opted to conduct multiple rounds of selection debates.
Following trials, coaching will continue to be available for those boys who do not make GPS teams. Students will also receive feedback following the trials so they can all identify areas to improve on. We are trying to think of innovative ways to keep non GPS debaters engaged during coaching and we are aiming to keep them debating as much as possible.
If students want award points for Debating they must attend every session (unless sick or have a
prior engagement) through the season and they must exhibit high standards of behaviour
Debating Prefect Report
Unfortunately, our Year 8 team lost their FED final debate last week against a good Barker side
with the topic "that Australia should support protest groups in China." Regardless, the team of
James, Liam, Thomas and Masrur did a commendable job, and the whole Year 8 group should be
heartened by qualification in the finals in the first place. The Year 12 side continued their
good start to the season by beating Sydney Tech in the regional semi-final, and will compete in
the regional final at Parliament House today. As well as this, senior trials begin this week so
our first and second grade sides will be named in the coming weeks. Good luck to everyone either
debating or trialling!
More information can be found at www.sydneyhigh.org.au/debating and will be emailed to
you on a weekly basis.
2012 Chinese Eisteddfod
My Year of Chinese Eisteddfod
Years 7 and 8
As in every competition, hard work is necessary to achieve ultimate success, but this same virtue is essential for everything we do in life. In my first few years in the Chinese Eisteddfod, I worked hard because I was told to, and naturally, the preparation that I put in converted into a swathe of prizes, culminating in a golden period of first place awards. The complacency that was brought about by lack of understanding of the value of hard work, however, meant that one year, the prizes just stopped coming in. That same year, my effort at school slipped; everything was thrown into reverse gear because I did not understand the value of diligence and persistence. This difficult lesson was essential to all my future endeavours, though, as I began to appreciate the benefits of a few hard yards.
Being a shy person ever since I could remember, giving a performance on stage has always been a Herculean challenge. By competing in the Chinese Eisteddfod, especially from such a young age, I was forced to develop a certain measure of confidence. As each year passed, my confidence continued to blossom, aiding me, for instance, in primary school public speaking competitions. It enabled me to perform onstage, without nerves and without fear of embarrassment, something that I have found to be far better than the euphoria that is associated with prizewinning. To me, getting up on the tiny stage of the Chinese Eisteddfod for individual performances was already a huge win.
Learning the poems for the Chinese Eisteddfod has also helped me to cultivate a degree of inquisitiveness, not just into Chinese culture and history, but also into many school subjects. With each poem that I diligently learnt, I managed to learn more about the rich Chinese culture and history, the heritage that constituted a strong part of my identity. I would picture the beauty of nature, the sober and often gruesome wars that had, for a time, defined China and the abstract philosophies of years gone by. In the poem that I most remember, entitled ‘Man jiang hong’ (A river of red), the historical context described a general bound by honour to the king, even unto death, the cultural context described the Mongolian influence upon the Chinese, whilst the lyrical passages painted a terrifying picture of a river of blood. It was such poems that helped to develop my curiosity.
My love for the Chinese Eisteddfod has also meant a matching, if not greater enjoyment, in the learning of the Chinese language. In high school, it was with the most extraordinary luck that I met Ms Zhang, who, not only helped me to develop a strong Chinese language base, but also could afford to spend time to train me for the Chinese Eisteddfod and go every single year. Her immense dedication to the competition, manifested by her presence for the whole day, and her accumulation of experience created the perfect environment for me to succeed in the competition.
In the interest of brevity, I shall not elaborate on this year’s proceedings, for that has already been summarised. But what I can say is that this year has been one of the best years that I have ever experienced in this Chinese Eisteddfod competition. With the hard work, confidence and affinity for learning that I had developed over the years, I enjoyed myself wholeheartedly over the course of the day.
There is no ‘come back next year’ option for me anymore, though the group
competition’s host thinks otherwise. Again, this has been one of the most rewarding years
of my participation in the Chinese Eisteddfod competition, which had begun 12 years earlier. For
all Chinese students out there, I definitely recommend participation in this competition, as you
will have the guidance of the ever more experienced Ms Zhang, and will also learn some Chinese
history as you go. And with each year that you attend, you are bound to gain valuable life skills
applicable to any situation that you are faced with.
2012 National Chinese Eisteddfod
After three months’ preparation and intensive training, our boys once again put on their best performance at the annual National Chinese Eisteddfod.
Years 11 and 12
Congratulations to all boys who took part in this event for your dedication and achievement. I hope the experience that you have gained through this year’s eisteddfods will benefit you in your future learning and performance.
Huge thanks to parents who gave immense encouragement and support to our boys. It was great to see families being so involved.
P.S. Check out the 2012 photos and some video footage on R Drive.
Gifted and Talented Co-curricular Activities
Recent weeks have been very busy for students involved in a number of co-curricular events.
On Monday 14th May, 12 students ( Yr 10: Michael Alexandratos, Riley Irwin, Christopher Ketkeo and AndrewTayeh, Yr 11: Jonothan Clements-Lendrum, Allen Feng, Khushaal Vyas., Callum York and Nelson Tang and Yr 12: Patrick Krakovsky, Adam Ceh and Gavin Sutton) attended the Philosophy lecture day hosted by Ascham. The event is designed and presented by Academy Conferences, a UK based organisation that aims to extend the thinking of students who are interested in being intellectually challenged. The lecturer, Julie Arliss is outstanding. She lectures at King’s College and works with philosophy students at Oxford and Exeter universities. She is also principal examiner at Cambridge. Julie’s lectures combine academic rigour with humour and she has an intuitive understanding of how best to engage 15-19yr olds. Topics included ‘Does a snail have consciousness?’ ‘Does time really bend?’ and ‘The philosophy of sex’ which led to the afternoon debate about the need to regulate sexual representation by the media and society at large. Students were then given an opportunity to contribute to the afternoon debate. The quality of their ideas and the level of articulation that these young adults brought to the discussion were very impressive. It’s really good news that our collective futures are in their hands! The day is a wonderful opportunity for our students to meet and exchange ideas with students from a range of schools in a relaxed, informal setting. A quote from Michael A, ‘It was an enjoyable, stimulating and thought-provoking event. The philosophical issues discussed were intriguing and well presented. Interacting with other schools was another benefit. The lecture/theatre hall was abuzz with the voices of socializing students.’
Da Vinci Decathlon 2012
The all-day event was held Tuesday 29th May for Years 7 and 8 and on Thursday 31st May for Years 9 and 10. The teams consist of 8 students who are chosen from the all-rounder lists and through staff recommendation of students in specialist areas such as Art, Design and Technology and Drama.
The Year 7 team consisted of Jasper McCahon-Boersma, Ahad-Anhiang , Corey Won, Akeedh Razmi, Ben Graham, Wangyu Tang and Jonathon Tran. They were one member down on the day but overcame this problem by reorganising task allocations. They were disappointed that they did not gain a medal but their team work was excellent. Christopher Chiam (Yr 11) used his 4 years of experience in Da Vinci teams to train the boys and to give them a sense of what is required in this event. Their best result was 3rd in Games of Strategy. They were really pleased with Wangyu’s and Jonathon’s Art/Poetry entry. We are still waiting for the overall results from the event. The boys showed how reliable and independent they are by meeting at 7.30am at Central for an 8.30 start at Knox- quite an achievement for Year 7!
The Year 8 team had the advantage of including some students who participated last year: Aiden Karahasen, Thomas Nimic, Fayad Morshedi were joined by Vishal Karnamadakala, Adam Shackel, Elery Smith, Jun Lin and Manning Blackell. The boys were pleased with their results in Maths and Science. We are waiting for the overall results. They are to be congratulated on the respect they show for each other and others. They worked well as a newly formed team and I’m sure they will capitalise on the experience acquired when they next compete.
The Year 9 team was outstanding. They achieved 2nd place overall and took to the podium to receive their medals beside 1st place getters, Sydney Girls High. It was a terrific result from the only state schools at the event. The boys admitted that if they had to be beaten by anyone, then best that it’s ‘the girls next door’. Wesley Beare, Leonard Mah, Benjamin Nguyen, Jesse Nixon, Marc Betbeder- Matibet, Thomas George, Luke Hoad and Philip Mai produced brilliant team work. Their best results were in Science where they were 2nd. Their preparation for the event was thorough and this showed on the day. Also, they moved through the tasks with far more efficiency than last year.
Lokesh Sharma has provided the report for the Year 10 team:
‘On the 31st of May, the Year 10 team went to Knox Grammar to compete in the Da Vinci Decathlon. The team, consisting of Robert Tan, Christopher Chen, Gideon Kwok, William Wu, Anes Karahasan, Michael Hauser, Edric Wang and Lokesh Sharma, was hoping for another podium finish after last year’s 2nd placing. This year the theme of the day was “Flight” and the day was comprised of 10 events in diverse fields of Science, Mathematics, Engineering, Philosophy, Creative Producers (Drama), Art and Poetry, Code Breaking, General Knowledge, English and Games of Strategy. These were all Leonardo Da Vinci’s skills and High competed fiercely throughout the day in what was a gruelling competition against 50 other High Schools from around the State. We triumphed in the typically tough field General Knowledge and also Art and Poetry, coming 1st in both these events. This set us up for another podium finish with High being placed 3rd. The highlight of the day was the fact that we beat Sydney Girls, who didn’t finish with a placing this year. (The lowlight was probably the food, which is usually a variety of scrumptious pizzas, turning out to be only boring cheese pizza.) It was a very successful day for High in what was the last outing for the Year 10s in the Da Vinci Decathlon.
Great Work and Congratulations to the Team!’
Unbeknown to Lokesh, the team was complimented on their Creative Producers which was described by the judges as refreshingly innovative in approach. Gideon and Chris achieved the unimaginable! A first place for Art and Poetry. Only those who have attempted this challenge can appreciate the significance of this feat.
The students involved on both days were exemplary ambassadors for the school in all respects. They were praised by a member of the general public on the train trip to Knox. It’s a pleasure and a privilege to accompany students of this calibre. They are supportive of each other, they show their pride in the school through their appearance and demeanour and they treat others with respect.
Thank you to all of the boys for making it such a great couple of days.
From the Andrews Library
NEW RESOURCES OUT TO SHELVES LAST 2 WEEKS
NEWS ON E BOOKS AND SCHOOL LIBRARIES
LINKS 4 LEARNING – Staff and students please note
Die Deutsche Frage
From the High Store
JUNE ONLY SPECIAL for RUGBY
From the Canteen
Once again thank you for being a canteen volunteer. We cannot manage without you. Thanks also to our Prefects for their extra work this week when we were short of volunteers. Remember ALL canteen profits are returned back to the school to help fund projects and facilities which benefit all our sons. Thank you to the volunteers for the last two weeks.
A special thank you to Jim and Frances for coming in at the last minute when we were short staffed.
The Canteen Voucher winner for May is Maria Farrell. Her son Ciaran has a $10.00 voucher
to spend at the canteen.
Sportsmaster’s Report - Armidale Visit
TAS Sporting Exchange Weekend
A big thank you and congratulations to all boys who attended the Armidale Sporting Weekend for their contribution to a successful and enjoyable weekend for all. Also a big ‘thank you’ to all staff who assisted with coaching, managing and supervising the boys over the weekend including: Mr Geoff Stein, Mr Anthony Cipolla, Mr George Barris, Mr Con Barris, Mr Jamie Kay, Mr Simon Kacimaiwai, Mr Samson Lou, Mr Tony Hannon, Ms Cathy Meaney, Mr Mehdi Hazrati and Mr Ian Robinson.
Some outstanding contribution from our boys who competed in multiple sports over the weekend and a special mention to Eugene Lee, Joshua Leo, Anthony Chen and Daniel Zhang who competed in Athletics, Rugby and Basketball. The following list of boys competed in two events:
Charlie Shi – Rugby and Basketball
Hannon–Harris trophy – SHS 7-TAS 11
From an Armidale School’s perspective Mr Grant Harris is one of the longest serving staff members having begun on staff in 1975. Currently, the Deputy headmaster, Mr Harris was an old boy of the school and it is only fitting to acknowledge his dedication to the extra-curricular life at the school having also coached many rugby teams for more than two decades, leading the cadet unit and still driving the school’s buses on sporting trips to Sydney. Mr Harris also loved playing Sydney High School on annual occasions when he was a student at the school.
And so the Hannon-Harris trophy has been initiated to commemorate the outstanding contribution of both of these fine men to their respective schools. The Armidale School has taken home the prize in 2012 defeating Sydney High 11 wins to 7. High was successful in winning the 1st and 2nd XI Football, Senior tennis, 13s and 15s Athletics relays and both junior and senior basketball.
On the 2nd of July, 11 members of the Sydney High Rifle Shooting squad packed their shooting gear ready for the 3 day 2012 Armidale trip. Expectations were as high as usual, with many months of training before the event at our new training venue, the Sydney International Shooting Centre.
After a 7 hour trip, we received a warm welcome from TAS to complement the blistering cold, and set off to the gym or designated rooms for a good night’s rest before competition the next morning. As part of the yearly tradition from 2009, a shooting match consisting of 10 deliberate shots and 8 5-second snap shoots takes place. A grand aggregate out of 1440 is used to determine the winner.
The next morning started off well as all the shooters rose on time for breakfast before the 8am shoot. We walked to the 50m smallbore range. The rifles were set up, the shooting gear was prepared, and the rules were explained. Finally, the shooting commenced.
A solid 95.1, 99.3 and 94.1 from Yujin Wu, Robert Sternhell and Bill Deng were posted to start off the first deliberate round. However the unfamiliar environment resulted in disappointing snap scores for Yujin and Robert. Exceptional shooting came from Jeremy Chan in the second round who scored 93.3 and 78, to take second place at the range. Minghao Wu in the next round also shot well, and a total of 165.3 (95.3 and 70) gave him second place too. Well done to Jack Zhou, who scored 158 (99.2! and 59), Evan Han (154.0 – 91.0, 63), Wilbert Wu (146.3 – 95.2, 51) and Vice-Captain Dominic Tran (159.2 – 92.2, 67) whose scores were used to determine the grand aggregate. Unfortunately, a total of 1257.15 points was not enough to beat the current GPS premier’s score of 1268.24, however, with a margin of only 11 points, we were very close.
Many thanks go to the Armidale School for hosting such a great competition every year, and also
for their warm hospitality. Thanks to both the Armidale School New England Girls School for
making a great competition! Thanks must also go to Cathy Meaney, coaches Ishan Nadkarni and Sam
Kremer, who came along not only for great support but also humour and general organisation. Such
a close result with the former GPS premiers shows how close High is to take GPS premiership once
again this year!
GPS Volleyball Results
High Rugby = High Spirit
The Armidale trip proved to be a very fun and enjoyable experience for the Rugby players. While only a couple of teams managed victories, the juniors had very competitive games across all age groups. 1st and 2nd grade found the fast country boys too difficult to handle but showed the famous High Spirit in never giving in. Congratulations go to the improving 3rd XV who were narrowly defeated by a strong Armidale team.
Team of the week - 13Bs – defeated Armidale’s 13Bs
Playing against Armidale this weekend, we had to remember our fundamentals. Having practised our
offensive tackling throughout the week, we applied it to the match very well, refusing the larger
opposition any metres. We moved up as one team and took their metres. However, the same could not
be said about our attacking component. Having been rushed by the quick Armidale defence, we
failed to spread the ball and, as a result of their speed, we made errors. This, along with the
failure to cover the wide ball, unfortunately brought a loss to our game. Sama (man of the match)
showed great resistance, wanting the ball off every breakdown. There were 2 mayday calls in the
game, both handled extremely well by both teams. Because of this, our game was shortened to
around 40 minutes. Still, we had great fun and hope we can play against them next year.
SBHS and SGHS P&C Joint Meeting
Wednesday 20 June 7:30pm to 9:30pm
SYDNEY BOYS HIGH GREAT HALL
Speaker: Anna Liu
THE CHALLENGES FACING THE MIGRANT PARENT IN THE SCHOOL ENVIRONMENT
Anna speaks from both a professional and personal viewpoint about the challenges facing migrant parents in their relationship with the education system, including the limitations imposed by the language barrier; the effect of differing cultural expectations; and how these challenges impact on the children involved.
Anna offers practical advice for all parents on how to improve the wellbeing of our daughters and sons in an environment where high academic performance is both encouraged and expected, at the same time as the journey through puberty is being negotiated. Parents are provided with an understanding of the physical and emotional needs of teenagers along with tips on recognising the signs of stress and strategies for addressing it.
We look forward to seeing you on the night. A Q&A session will be held afterwards and a light supper will be provided. Parking will be available via the Cleveland Street and Anzac parade entrances.