From Our Head of Junior School
As we approach the end of another term, it’s incredibly gratifying to reflect on the growth and development our students have made in recent months. Parent-Teacher Interviews/Conversations and Student-Led Conferences this week have been fabulous opportunities to share and celebrate learning. We’ve rightly seen significant development in those things that are the easiest to quantify: knowledge and understandings associated with each subject. We can see these through work samples and assessments, or by asking direct questions of the girls to find out what they know, and they should be justly proud of their progress and achievements. However, equally as valuable, or perhaps even more so in the long term, are those skills and dispositions for learning and life which are not related solely to cognitive learning, and that are perhaps more difficult to grade. As the Year 3 – 6 girls were preparing for their Student-Led Conferences, it was wonderful listening to them talk about both the cognitive and non-cognitive skills they’re proud to have developed over the past term or two.
The International Baccalaureate programmes incorporate a set of ‘Approaches to Learning’ (ATL) within the frameworks. ATLs are skills and dispositions for thinking, communication, research, self-management and effective social interactions, all of which are necessary attributes for successful lifelong learning. They support students to view learning as something that they ‘do for themselves in a proactive way, rather than as a covert event that happens to them in reaction to teaching’. (Zimmerman 2002: 65). From the ELC onwards, our children begin to develop these through experiences and countless opportunities for practice provided by their teachers.
Importantly, this set of skills is not just from the domain of education. ‘The Global framework on core skills for life and work in the 21st century’, published in 2021 by the International Labour Organization, provides a similar list of essential skills and dispositions, over and above cognitive skills, for an effective and successful life post-school. The OECD Learning Compass 2030 (OECD, 2018) lists a similar set of skills. Social and emotional skills such as communication, collaboration and teamwork, conflict resolution, negotiation and emotional intelligence are high on the lists. Along with these are metacognitive skills including analytical and critical thinking, creative and innovative thinking, strategic thinking, problem-solving, decision-making, self-reflection and learning to learn. These together with digital tools and environmental awareness will assist students of today to positively navigate life and successfully participate in the workforce in the coming decades.
One of the best gifts we can give our children is an understanding of the broad range of skills and dispositions that sit alongside cognitive learning that will assist them to flourish in life beyond school. As is the case with all learning, it’s difficult to acquire skills without personally doing them, over and over again. Therefore, as the adults in their lives, we need to help them notice these abilities in themselves and others, set goals for their own development, give them plentiful opportunities to practice and improve, and have positive conversations with them about the progress they are making. Frequently, this means stepping back and enabling our children to work things out for themselves, letting them try out these skills and dispositions and grow from their mistakes as these are a natural and important part of learning. Thank you to our families who are showing our students the value of developing a broad range of skills and dispositions over and above the cognitive. Our girls are truly fortunate to be so well supported in developing skills for lifelong success.
Head of Junior School
Girls in Tech Sparks STEM Inspiration
Our annual Girls in Tech was yet another tech-tacular success! With a host of STEM-based organisations from South Australia and interstate, and 240 Year 5 and 6 girls from local schools, the expo had something for everyone.
Saints’ APEX students headed up the event with Captain Lucy Schirripa opening proceedings before our keynote speaker, Application Development Analyst and Consultant Amy Brooks-Birve, inspired and captivated our young (and older) audience.
The girls enjoyed workshops by Lumination, RoboGals, HerTech Path, Makers Empire, the University of Adelaide and more. We even had sessions led by our APEX girls, with Mya Ng running eSports, Astrid Teague holding a SaintsTV workshop and Eliza Monaghan conducting an engaging drones activity. Senior Library staff Lisa Hollis and Kate McBride also ran a brilliant workshop with the Breakout-EDU kits to create an escape room challenge for the students. Our APEX leaders and staff conducted themselves brilliantly and worked alongside seasoned industry professionals with their activities; a very proud moment for the School.
We also set up an Innovation Hub with representatives from Saab Australia, Flinders University, the University of Adelaide, RMIT, Rising Sun Pictures, Services Australia (Canberra), Civil Train, REDARC, and Lumination. Our booths managed to inspire and provide thought-provoking pathways across Science, Technology Engineering and Mathematics.
Lucy brought the day to a close with a brilliant summary of all the events before our guests departed the School. This year’s Girls in Tech was made possible by the efforts of all our Year 5/6 teaching staff, Property Services, Fiona McGregor, Helen Smith and Suzanne Haddy, and Randal Irvine who was heavily involved and a major part of the expo’s success.
Head of Digital Learning and Technologies
Friday Night Fever at Disco Cabaret
Disco music filled the hallways of Saints Girls last Friday night as more than 120 girls got into the groove for their Cabaret Evening.
A huge congratulations to all students involved from Years 3 – 12 in this wonderful celebration of music. It was a joy to see such passionate, dedicated and talented girls and staff all working together to produce such a professional performance.
Thank you also to the Friends of The Arts who supported the event and purchased additional lighting for the evening.
Director of Music
Strike A Chord – Broadcast of Champions
Esperanza’s 3rd place performance at the recent Strike A Chord National Chamber Music championship featured during a special broadcast of the event on ABC Classic FM this afternoon.
It will be available on the ABC Classic website for the next few weeks, so be sure to have a listen to the incredible musicianship of all ensembles who took part.
New Notes at Junior Music Concert
On Tuesday, we celebrated the beginning of our Junior School girls’ music journey at Saints with the annual Year 2, 3, 4 Music Concert in the Arts Centre. Displayed on stage was a wonderful array of confident, enthusiastic and motivated girls who were so excited to share the work they have been learning in Music lessons for the past three terms.
At Saints Girls, we encourage all students to participate in music, knowing that what we offer in the Music Department will genuinely improve our students in not only their musical pursuits, but also across academics, leadership, wellbeing and teamwork.
How does music learning improve learning in Maths, English and Science? An extensive study was released in 2019 which found that students who studied music in primary school and into high school were almost one year ahead of their non-musically trained peers in their Maths, Science and English grades at the end of their schooling. This study received great interest on social media due to its large sample size (over 112,000 participants), the factors it controlled for (such as socioeconomic status) and the fact that it distinguished between the types of music learning (singing and instrumental).
Following this week’s concert, the girls felt uplifted:
‘I loved hearing the applause and playing my best.’ – Esther (Year 3)
‘It was great to be able to play with my friends.’ – Harper (Year 3)
Thank you to our Music Tutors who guided the girls over the past six months, and to our parents and School community who supported them at their fantastic performance.
Director of Music
Year 5 Production Sets Sail Next Week!
Our Year 5 Production – Pirates of Penzance JR. – is on next Thursday 29 and Friday 30 September at 1.15pm and 7pm. The girls have been preparing to take the audience on this adventure for the past two terms, and are excited to thrill you with singing, dancing and joyful merriment in this wonderful Gilbert and Sullivan operetta.
You can be assured of a fun time as we celebrate beautiful maidens, bumbling policemen and not-so menacing pirates! Please come along and support our Year 5 stars!
Tickets now available via TryBooking – click here
Year 5 Teacher
World of Opportunities at Year 3 Travel Day
Our Year 3 students have been learning about mapping, navigation, geographical locations and landmarks as part of our ‘How We Organise Ourselves’ unit of inquiry. The central idea is that ‘Places have characteristics that can be represented in different ways’.
The girls have been exploring the characteristics Australia and various countries around the world, developing an appreciation of people’s connection to and perspective of places. This included opportunities to listen to ‘Little Yarns’ podcast episodes, enabling them to gain a deeper understanding and connection to the indigenous regions in Australia.
The unit culminated in a research study where the girls worked collaboratively with their peers in small groups to create an expo stand, showcasing their knowledge of their allocated country. These included China, India, Vietnam, England, Greece, Italy, Argentina, Japan, France and South Africa. The students worked hard to create an itinerary, brochure, map and flag, which they shared with their peers, buddies and members of staff during our ‘Travel Day’. It was an exciting activity for all involved, with the girls creating their own passports to ‘travel’ around to each country.
It was extraordinary to see them confidently communicating their new knowledge of these places around the world. In turn, they were so eager to listen to others, displaying an innate sense of curiosity to find out more. A special thank you to Garth Coulter for creating laser-cut stamps, contributing immensely to the authenticity of the travel experience. It was a wonderful conclusion to what was a meaningful and engaging inquiry for all.
‘My favourite part of the Travel Day was stamping everyone’s passport once they visited my expo stand, which was all about India.’ – Penny
‘I really enjoyed sharing my work with everyone, especially Mrs Smith. I now know so much more about geography and the world.’ – Mikayla
Sarah Mulraney and Monique McLeay
Year 3 Teachers
Year 7s Nurture Nature and Culture Connections
Earlier this month, our Year 7 students visited the Sturt River (Warriparri) Nature Trail and the Living Kaurna Cultural Centre. They enjoyed exploring the trail which focuses on native flora and fauna species, human impacts, and the role and value of public art. At Warriparinga Wetlands, the girls experienced a Welcome to Country ceremony, bush tucker walks and a weaving workshop. They enjoyed the variety of activities throughout the experience where they were able to enhance their cultural awareness and understandings.
The girls shared:
‘I enjoyed the smoking ceremony at the beginning. It was very interesting to learn about how the indigenous people are welcoming to everyone.’ – Zoe
‘I liked learning about the different bush food and plants the Kaurna people used.’ – Lauren
‘I enjoyed weaving the baskets because it was a very leisurely activity and a fun way to learn more about Aboriginal culture.’ – Nishka
‘I liked learning about native plants and animals on the tour and walk.’ – Aleesha
‘The oldest oven pit in the area was an interesting sight to see and it gave me an idea of what life would’ve been like for Aboriginal people.’ – Shwethakie
Head of Humanities
Out of the Blue Arts Journal – Enter Now
To celebrate the many talented individuals within our School community, the annual Out of the Blue Arts Journal is back on for 2022!
We are inviting all students from ELC – Year 12, Old Scholars and staff to submit their artistic creations for this year’s journal. These submissions can be made individually or collaboratively. The journal features a wide variety of art including photographs, drawings, paintings, poetry, cakes, dances, song lyrics and tapestry. If you think of anything else, feel free to email us.
For any media items such as music or dance, a still graphic of the work with a relevant QR code will be used. Any music or media must be owned by the artist or should use royalty-free music. In order to represent our whole community, your submissions can also be in any language (provided it is submitted alongside an English translation).
Our journal was a huge success last year, featuring over 175 submissions and selling over 180 copies. A celebration launch will be held in the School Chapel on Thursday 3 November.
The closing date for all entries is Friday 7 October (the first week of the school holidays). We are thankful for all entries, but due to the number of submissions that we receive, only our successful applicants will be notified. Your submissions can either be emailed to the Out of the Blue email or placed in the Out of the Blue boxes in classrooms (for Junior School students) or in the Library (for Middle and Senior School students).
The Out of the Blue Arts Journal Committee is looking forward to seeing all of your amazing pieces and celebrating the artists in our community!
Arts Journal Student Committee
Family Day Fun – Save the Date
Join us on Sunday 23 October for the Saints Girls’ Family Day!
From 11am to 2pm, Chiverton Lawns will host a fun-filled afternoon with food trucks, a coffee van and other refreshments. Bring the family, a picnic rug, and catch up with old friends and new.
Save the date in your calendar now and keep an eye out in future editions of eNews for more details.
Road Safety Alert
The School has received reports of concerning driver behaviour on Hallett Road. This includes holding up traffic while waiting for cars to leave in order to park near the ELC, performing risky u-turns and parking in bus zones.
As our staff have no jurisdiction over public roads, the School will be asking the police to conduct regular patrols at peak times.
We implore all of our community members to support road safety and show courtesy to others.
Car Park Protocols
It is important to remind families about our car park protocols, particularly during drop off and pick up.
If the car park is full and you are unable to enter, circle the block until it is clear to enter, find a park elsewhere or, where age-appropriate, meet your daughter in a surrounding street.
Please note that, unless special circumstances apply, parents of girls in Years 2 to 12 should not enter the car park to collect their daughters prior to 3.30pm. Parents of girls in Reception and Year 1 have exclusive use of the pick-up zone prior to this time for safety and traffic reasons.
Please also refrain from turning right into or out of the car park at peak times, and please do not queue in the car park’s lanes as this often prevents drivers who are legally parked from exiting.
We have also previously received complaints about cars being parked too close to or in front of driveways, or across from other vehicles in surrounding streets, making it extremely difficult for residents and other road users to navigate.
We ask all community members to please show consideration for others. Thank you for your cooperation.
School Shop Notices
School Shop Opening Hours
Monday to Friday: 8am – 4pm (closed for lunch 12 – 12.30pm)
Parents can also order items via our Online School Shop
Summer Uniform Appointments
Summer Uniform Fittings are well underway. Our online booking system shows available time slots through to October. Middle and Senior School students are welcome to visit during their recess or lunch breaks.
Click here to access the calendar and select the time that best suits you (please include your daughter’s name).
Appointment times are filling fast, so your prompt attention is appreciated.
During the school holidays, the School Shop will be open on Friday 14 October from 9am to 4pm.
Please also be reminded of these general requirements:
Should your child develop any symptoms, even mild ones, they must not attend school or ELC and should be tested for COVID-19. Those with symptoms who test negative using a RAT must undertake a PCR test to confirm that result. Students who have previously tested positive and have completed isolation in the past 28 days do not need to undertake testing.
If your child tests positive to COVID-19, notify us immediately. Please also advise the type of test (RAT/PCR), the date your child’s test was taken and the date symptoms started (if no symptoms, note ‘asymptomatic’).
Please notify us via email or text:
Text: 0428 601 957 (save to phone contacts as SPGS)
If you need to notify us over the phone, call the Front Office on 8334 2200.
If your child is too sick to attend school, they are therefore also too sick to be working remotely from home.
Please also note that SA Health strongly recommends face masks in schools when indoors for students across Years 3 to 12. The same advice applies for all adults, including visitors, except if it impedes the ability to teach or interact with children.
School Medical Information Reminder
It is imperative that all medical information, including immunisations, is up to date on the School’s myLink parent portal.
Please follow this pathway to check and/or update details: myLink > Community Portal > My Details > select child name
If you have any questions, please email firstname.lastname@example.org
General Absences from School
If your child will not be attending school/ELC due to illness or otherwise, please notify the School via one of the following methods and include the name of the ELC Room, Class or Home Group.
If emailing, feel free to ‘CC’ the teacher of the Room/Class/Home Group as well.
Please also provide a reason for the absence as the School requires this for government reporting purposes.
Text: 0428 601 957
Phone: 8334 2200
It would be appreciated if notifications could be made prior to 9am.