WHS Newsletter | Issue 2.01 | 7 May 2021
Kia ora - welcome to the Wakatipu High School newsletter as Term 2 gets underway. As I flagged it at the end of last term that it would be, this term is off to a flying start - and with plenty more to come.
Senior Next Steps last night was a very good event. Thanks to the many parents who came along to meet with teachers and engage with their student’s learning journey. While there are, rightly, some honest conversations at Next Steps, people found the evening positive and productive, and useful in terms of supporting their student’s learning, progress and achievement.
Another important event this week was the Summer Sports Assembly this afternoon. It was great to gather and celebrate the achievements of over 130 of our students in a wide range of sports - including national champions in athletics and rowing. It was also great to have a number of parents in attendance, and to have senior students play a part in the running of the ceremony.
The sports section below is packed full of the efforts and achievements of our students - it is always a great read, and if you don't already be sure to check out our WHS Sports facebook page. This week the sports section below also contains info on how to purchase NZSki student passes for the upcoming ski season.
A significant happening this week was the news that Colliers are supporting the WHS Foundation and school to the tune of $90,000 this year!! Colliers have been incredible supporters of the Foundation and school for many years now and their generosity has made a real difference to WHS. We are incredibly grateful - thank you, Colliers!!
Related, a quick update on the WHS Foundation. Chairman Wayne Foley has the Foundation absolutely humming, with a number of events already this year and more to come, including an alumni programme that is about to take off. The Business Partnership programme has had a massive increase - a huge thanks to all those businesses who are signed up and supporting. The Foundation believes that the school is a very important part of the community and are committed to supporting us to deliver a great all-round education for our students. The Foundation is doing an amazing job of supporting us and continues to make a massive difference to WHS. On behalf of the school, my very sincere thanks to everyone supporting and involved in the Foundation.
In the newsletter last term I noted that the Phase 2 work meant that the main building was closed for the holidays to enable work to continue at pace and it is progressing well - see below for photos.
Another reminder that we are offering parent tours on Wednesday mornings in Weeks 3, 4 and 5 this term. You do need to book if you are keen - please click here.
As I noted at the top, the term is off to a flying start which sets the scene for the rest of the term. Term 2 is always a busy one with a focus on teaching and learning, and a number of co-curricular trips and important events including the University visits, upcoming House debating competition, the Formal and Matatu to finish the term. In terms of the next two weeks don't forget:
- Accord (Teacher Only) Day - next Tuesday 11 May
- Excellence and Ad Alta Assemblies - in Week 3, see Key Dates below for House days and times.
While the term is underway we do know that for some of our fine students there may have been a bit of graunching of the gears as they returned to the rhythm and routine of school. While this is not necessarily abnormal for teenagers, do encourage them to get back into school routines including good sleep, a healthy diet and exercise, as well as committing time to homework and their learning.
After the wonderful weather of this week, the weekend is looking decidedly average with showers forecast on both days - hopefully you can dodge them when you’re out and about.
Update on Expansion Project
Phase 2 construction is well underway to deliver two teaching wings, a new double gym, a lecture room, and associated internal works to expand our music and technology spaces. Here are some photos showing the building work in progress taken over the last week.
48 Hour Film Competition Winners!
Each year a national 48 hour film competition is held over a weekend. In the first weekend in March this year two Wakatipu High School teams competed and completed a film in 48 hours. On Friday night teams are sent their briefs with specific instructions of genre, conventions and what must be included in their film which must be uploaded before 7pm on Sunday evening. It's a weekend of furious film making.
Our Year 11 team; Isadora Figueroa, Noah Green, Lily Kay, Kane Viggers, and Mia Williamson made a mockumentary entitled, "The Greatest Shoeman." It was voted best visual FX in the Otago/Southland regional heats. It was described by the judges as, "Really enjoyable. They looked like they were having so much fun and it really sells that to the audience...Lots of energy! Really upbeat and fun."
Media Studies is all about using technical skills to create and express ideas while understanding how to engage an audience and tell a story. The year 11s are currently busy spending much longer planning, editing and producing their own music videos, and a lot of fun is being had. We will see who comes out as "Best Music Video" later in the year at the Wakademy Awards, our school film competition.
Win at St John's National Youth Festival
At the start of the year, I was selected to be a part of the South Island Representative squad to compete at the St John's National Youth competitions held in Wellington. This year we originally had 5 trainings but the announcement that we would be moving to Alert Level 2 and 3 causing both Northern & Central region to miss out on training this meant that National Youth Manger made the unfortunate decision to cut our training weekends down to four. Throughout the roughly two months that we were given to train, the squad upskilled themselves in areas of First Aid, Communications, and Drill. Whilst the time constraints did limit us we were able to successfully learn all the skills that we needed to learn. Whilst at competitions we met people from all around New Zealand.
South Island was successful in winning the Sir Alfred Robin memorial shield, which is the shield for winning Champion Regionals which South Island has had for the last 9 years. We also won many other trophies.
St John Cadet
Otago Junior Maths Competition
Recently 52 students from Year 9 - Year 11 sat the Otago Junior Maths competition - a rigorous online competition that tests students on many aspects of Mathematics. From the thousands of students who sat the test nationally the top 20% are invited to the second round.
A massive congratulations to Tayah Vivian, Alisha Messingham, Harriet Blundell, Jared Long and Harry Seeto for being selected for round 2. An outstanding achievement and all the best for round 2!
University of Canterbury Assessments (CAM)
Last call for any Junior students who would like to be entered for Maths, English or Science assessments ($9.50 each). The sign up sheet is on the Curious Minds classroom or just fire an email at email@example.com and I'll enter you.
Stars Peer Mentoring Programme - Term 1 Recap
Stars Peer Mentoring is an enjoyable experience for Year 9s to learn skills to help them integrate into high school. With the support of older peers, Year 9s are able to become more comfortable with the way of life at Wakatipu. The life skills we learnt and covered in Term 1 were Cyber Safety, Communication, Cooperation, Negotiation, and Compromise. We explored these skills through quizzes, videos, games, discussions, and written and practical activities.
Greenstone Camp was one of many opportunities for Peer Mentors to support the Year 9s. The Lake Rere Tramp was a chance for peers to create greater bonds with each other which paves better communication and compassion amongst one another. Peer mentors went to camp for the day with the intention of connecting with Year 9s in the natural environment. These connections help to relieve the stress of coming to a new school. Small groups of students are able to communicate with older students who can answer most of their questions. Year 9s also get the opportunity to meet the other Peer Mentors for the house to lengthen their reach. Huge thanks to Go Orange for supporting the Peer Mentors with transportation once again this year. We loved the Water Taxi and the epic UNIMOG!!
Culture, Values, and Beliefs were a huge part of many discussions. This helped when Year 9s were put in the situation of creating groups. I recollect that after asking my Peer Mentoring group to split up into smaller groups, they made sure everyone was happy before finally saying. One student even directly asked someone they didn’t know that well if they were comfortable with the groups. One peer hanging out with another peer. This new approach helps the students understand people and situations better.
This term, we are looking forward to the STARS Community Adventure which is the main component of Term 2. This component allows us to engage and learn more about local services which are available for us and the public at all times and also enable us to make wider connections with our community. Coming up this term, we plan to explore the skills of Time Management, Positive Thinking, Social Skills, and Social Media.
STARS Peer Mentor
Planning for Queenstown’s Future!
Mr Kendall and Mr Tweddell’s Year 10 Social Science classes had the opportunity to participate in the Te Pūtahi Ladies Mile Masterplan consultation process this week. Members of the planning team came into school and ran a seminar with students.
We explored the urban planning process and looked at some of the issues that surround the Te Pūtahi Ladies Mile Masterplan. Students asked questions and provided feedback on a range of key points from the plan. Students were invited to consider what they would do if they could design a community of their own. They were also given the opportunity to offer their perspectives on what they consider to be important aspects of living in a community such as Queenstown. The discussion also allowed for students to provide suggestions of ways to overcome some of the issues Queenstown is currently facing.
Students gained insight in to what is involved in an urban planning process. They are now working on their own proposals to submit to the Te Pūtahi Ladies Mile consultation.
Special thanks to Bruce, Jeff, Simon and Colin from the Te Pūtahi Ladies Mile Master plan team for coming in and working with our classes.
Social Science Teacher
Head Student Message
Welcome back to one of the busiest terms of the year. I hope everyone had a good holiday and is ready to get straight into it. I am definitely missing the sunshine that I got to soak up in the Bay of Islands, alongside some other students on the Waitangi trip. I felt privileged to be part of such an awesome experience. The Maori infused week meant we got to have a blast with dolphins and Piripi during the last week of last term. Piripi is a Year 10 student named Philip, he was given this nickname as he was fully immersed in the Maori culture not only mentally but by wearing no shoes for most of the trip. Not only did Piripi have the best haka moves but he also had the most drenched shoes from a waka experience on the first day.
We all go through the phase at least three times in our lives of being the “little fish in the big pond”, even though a year before you once were the “big fish in the little pond”. This week is the first week that our Year 13s get to haere ra and visit their universities. It's a scary thing to think about but I’m sure it is going to be worth it.
A reminder from me - Formal tickets are on sale starting this week. The price is $102.00 per ticket. Tickets will be sold at Student Services, during Break 2 as follows:
- Friday 7 May - Year 13 only
- Monday 10 May - Years 13 and 12
- Tuesday 11 May - Years 13 and Year 12
Please note Ticket sales close (for WHS students) at the end of Break 2 on Tuesday 11 May
No refunds on tickets!!!
An important house competition is coming up over the next few weeks and that is… House Debating. Not that I am very talented in this subject, I highly recommend backing your house. This is a draw breaker competition as all the houses are so close. The topics are relevant and interesting no matter your age!
An awesome celebration assembly this Friday for Summer Sports. This is a great opportunity to acknowledge sporting success with your peers and recognise our schools and students' achievements. A big congratulations if you are receiving an award. All students involved in representing WHS in sport during the summer season have been invited to this assembly. We will be celebrating athlete and team achievement across a range of sports, summarising each sports achievements and presenting trophies and certificates.
I hope you enjoyed your holidays as much as Piripi and I did.
Maori Lead Prefect
Sports News and Information
Winter Sport Begins
Winter sport kicks off in earnest this week with grading games for the Wakatipu Netball Centre competition. WHS has 23 teams playing across various grades and over 220 players! A number of rugby teams have pre-season games this weekend while hockey is set to start their Central Otago competition next week. Girls football training got underway today and trials for the boys teams are being held next week. A number of school basketball teams have been playing in the QEC competition for a few weeks now. It has been a very busy and exciting time getting so many students ready for the winter season. The sports department wants to wish all of the students all the very best for their sports this season, enjoy!
Summer Sports Assembly
Today we celebrated and acknowledged regional, South Island and national achievements that our students made across the summer season. There were over 130 students that were recognised at this assembly across a wide range of sports which was just fantastic to see. Well done to all of these students.
NZ National Age Group Swimming Champs
Jacob Marriott and Connor Paton qualified for and attended the NZ National Age Group Swimming Championships. Jacob competed in the 15 year old 50m backstroke achieving a personal best and made the final in the 200m backstroke, gaining a personal best in both the prelims and the finals, placing 10th. Connor swam in the 14 year old 50m butterfly, achieving a personal best and the 1500m freestyle, finishing 6th in the timed final.
New Zealand Open Karate Championships
The New Zealand National Open Karate Championships were held in Christchurch at the end of April. WHS had three competitors in the form of Violet Smillie, Mackenzie Jackson and our very own Mr Quaid. Congratulations to all three. Results from this tournament are below:
Violet Smillie - Gold - 12/13years Intermediate Kata, 9th - 12/13years Premier Kumite
Mackenzi Jackson - Silver - 14/15years Premier Kumite, Bronze - 14/15years Premier Kata
Mr Quaid - Silver - +45 Men's Premier kata
Saskia Learmonth represented both WHS and Otago across both foot and mountain biking orienteering champs over the holidays. Saskia has done incredibly well, her results are listed below.
New Zealand Mountain Bike Orienteering Championships: Middle - 1st place, Sprint - 1st place
Otago Schools Foot Orienteering Championships: 1st Overall
South Island Foot Orienteering Championships: Long - 1st place, Middle - 3rd place, Sprint - 2nd place
1st XI Boys Football Trials
This is an open invitation to any players wanting to play competitive football for the school. We offer a 1st XI and a Junior Boys XI team to play school exchanges and tournaments as regular weekly football is run through QAFC. The trials will be run at the Event Centre. Please let Mr Lowe know if you are unable to make it but wish to be considered for either team; firstname.lastname@example.org.
Tuesday 11 May 4-6pm
Thursday 13 May 4-6pm
Tuesday 18 May 4-6pm - TBC
Thursday Morning Run Group
Ms Scott is once again leading the Thursday morning run group this term. This group is open to anyone and everyone of all abilities and is a great way to get into running socially. The group meets in the foyer ready to depart at 7:40am every Thursday. Email Ms Scott if you are keen to give it a go; email@example.com
Highlanders are Coming to Town
The Highlanders will take on the Melbourne Rebels in Queenstown at the Event Centre Oval at 2:35pm on Sunday 30 May. This is an awesome opportunity to watch the local super rugby team in action! Grab your tickets from Ticketek now: here
The annual ski pass for WHS students is now online and available for purchasing. Parents/Caregivers can use either the Coronet peak or Remarkables web store to purchase these discounted passes. Everybody purchasing a local school's season pass just needs to select June 11 as prompted, this prompts a dropdown box of which school they attend. The cut off date for purchase is at the end of August.
Coronet Peak: https://shop.coronetpeak.co.nz/qt-secondary-schools
Term 2 Hoody Order
If you missed out on a hoody in the Term 1 order but would still like to purchase one for 2021, please click the link below. The last day for orders in Term 2 is Friday 21 May (week 3).
To order please fill in the Hoody Order Form
Keep Us Informed
The sports department would love to hear from you if you know of any awesome achievements from our students so that we can celebrate these as a school. Please send through details and photos to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Support Sport at WHS
Jump on board and support the team by liking or following the Wakatipu High School Sports Facebook page (@WakatipuHighSchoolSports) This is the best way to stay informed and up to date with the successes of our athletes and teams and help celebrate their great achievements.
Director of Sport
Arts News and Information
Big Break is happening at the end of next week (Friday 14 May) and this is a great opportunity for musicians at all levels to perform to a small audience in the school theatre. Both bands and solo/duo acts are welcome. The event will start at 6.00pm and will run for approximately two hours.
Parents/guardians are welcome to attend to support the students.
Music Mentors Needed
The Arts Department is looking for anyone with some spare time during the day or after school to help mentor some junior bands. Please contact Monica Parker at email@example.com if interested.
Itinerant lessons and the Choir have started again this week. Lessons will be at the same time as last term.
Owls Do Cry
On the final Friday of Term 1, 35 Drama and Performing Arts students bused over to Wanaka to be a part of the Festival of Colour 2021. Students were subjected to an industry-leading performance from the Red Leap Theatre - a physical theatre company. The performance was titled "Owls Do Cry" and is a modern response to the novel "Owls Do Cry" written by Janet Frame. Students thoroughly enjoyed the experience and enjoyed the unique performance style that is Red Leap.
Remarkables Theatre - Pint Size Plays
In the final week of the Term 1 holidays, Joel Mitchell, Shiro Ichihara and Riley Sinteur (all WHS students) took part in the annual Pint Size Plays run by Remarkables Theatre Company. Students ran the sound and lighting for the event over three nights and Riley performed alongside seasoned locals. Overall the event was a huge success, and the students represented the school and Arts Department well. Congratulations to all three students.
Wargames - Game Over trip
On the last Thursday of Term 1, the Wargames club sought a change of scenery in an effort to expand our community and make new friends around town and so we went just over the road to Game Over. Game Over has been extremely generous to the club over the previous term, and have recently opened their own catalogue of board games which can be purchased at their venue. They also gave us some pretty good rates for Go Karting and Laser Tag, which we made ample use of.
The evening started off at our regular stomping ground, the Temporary Classrooms. A shorter Wargames session was concluded with a communal snack break, featuring the awesome cake seen below, courtesy of Alisha Messingham (although I couldn’t bear to destroy it, our other wargamers showed little hesitation).
Then we were off on our 500 metre Odyssey. We started off with a few rounds of laser tag (these legendary battles were extremely competitive, bragging rights were at stake here).
Then the go karting kicked off, our racers lit up the track, and almost jeopardized our relationship with Game Over with their aggressive driving (looking at you Connor).
A massive thank you to Game Over for inviting us over.
All in all, a pretty epic evening.
James Scholes (Yr 12)
Careers Department - Student Job Vacancies
After School Care Position:
We are an organisation aimed at delivering high quality and fun sports based after
school care programs.Also operating in Dunedin, we are looking for coaches to join our exciting after school care program team (3pm - 5pm) in Queenstown. Our program includes food preparation,
delivering sports based activities, and interacting with parents.
As an after school care assistant, you will:
- Manage sports and other activities with children.
- Prepare afternoon tea.
- Supervise and assist with homework.
This assistant will be someone who is:
- Punctual and on time
- Can identify with children of all backgrounds.
- Actively involved with all lessons.
- Can communicate with both children and adults alike.
- Is reliable and responsible.
Experience is not essential. A driving licence and access to a vehicle is desirable but not
essential. First aid qualifications are also desirable. Anyone with interest in sport and education are encouraged to apply. If you are interested, please send your CV and/or cover letter to:
Or, call 0272062024 for further information
The job is also posted on SEEK
REMARKABLES SWEET SHOP:
We are hoping to recruit 1 or 2 students to work over the July school holidays at the Queenstown Remarkable Sweet Shop. Here are the key details:
- Outgoing and happy personality confident working in a busy sales role
- Must be available 10 to 25 July for 4-5 shifts a week
- Casual contract; likely ongoing casual work after the July holiday
- Training commences in June
- Interviews in May
- Applications with a cover letter and CV to firstname.lastname@example.org
We need your feedback!
SchoolPickUp is YOUR online school fundraising store that costs the school ZERO but has the potential to generate HUGE passive extra income the school needs to give our kids the best possible education and maximise the opportunities available to them. - let's utilise this!
Please take this 2 Minute Survey - so we can find out what you - the parents want, to make this initiative really work