WHS Newsletter | Issue 4.03 | 04 November 2022
Kia ora and welcome again to the Wakatipu High School newsletter. Following our Year 13 Prizegiving last Friday, Monday was another important day as we held our Year 11 and 12 Prizegivings. Both were great celebrations of our students’ academic and other achievements; many thanks to parents who joined us.
Junior English and Maths exams were held this week. As well as assessing students, these provided an important opportunity for junior students to ‘rehearse’ the experience of sitting formal exams, and they went really well.
This week has also been Tutorial Week for seniors who have come and gone as they have attended tutorials and studied (and had coffee breaks) over the last four days. ‘Super Saturday’ for Level 2 Maths is all day tomorrow, with more tutorials running on Sunday before NCEA exams begin on Monday - and we wish our seniors all the very best for their studying and their exams. NB we have included the excellent 'Managing Exams' article again below.
Term 4 has three very distinct phases and we are about to really enter the middle phase which is the period after seniors have left and some areas of the school are in exam mode, but before Branches Camp goes in in Week 7.
LE Reports for juniors will be out by this evening - the fourth one for this Semester and the penultimate one for the year. Again, LE Reports are a key mechanism for feedback on a student’s engagement with their learning. While prizegivings and exams may make it feel like the year is drawing to a close for some, learning is still very definitely continuing for juniors and they need to continue to be engaged, so please look through the reports and have conversations as appropriate. PAS Reports for seniors will be out later this evening.
There are several days to note in the Key Dates section below:
- The final two national Accord (Teacher Only) Days are on Friday 25/11 and Friday 2/12 (nb Branches Camp 1 continues as normal this day).
- PPTA Paid Union Meeting is on the afternoon of Monday 28/11, more details to follow.
The newsletter below has some really wonderful articles in it, including the Kate Moetaua Foundation, Arrowtown Autumn Festival and Veolia Scholarships and their very worthy recipients, the visit of a real-life astronaut this week, and the AJ Hackett Year 13 Bungy. There is also a great story on Mikaela Patterson who has done 630 hours of volunteering!
Tonight is the Branches Trust Quiz Night so I’m sure I’ll see some of you there, and next Friday is the Branches workday - thanks to everyone who is supporting that.
After the unsettled weather of this week we have a great weekend ahead with light winds, mild temps and plenty of sun - great for getting out and about, but make sure those seniors are striking the balance between sun and study!
Year 11 & 12 Prizegiving
We celebrated the success of our Year 11s and our Year 12s in prizegiving ceremonies held earlier this week. Our prizegivings are our most formal and important events held to recognise and celebrate Academic excellence, as well as important Leadership, Service and other achievements of our students.
Huge congratulations to all the recipients - a full list of prizewinners is included in the link below.
Kate Moetaua Foundation Scholarships
The 2022 Kate Moetaua Foundation scholarships were awarded to five Wakatipu High School students this week by the Chair of the Foundation, Kate's eldest daughter Anika. Kate was a much loved Wakatipu High School drama teacher who passed away in 2018, and the Foundation has been set up in her honour.
Each year students from Years 9-13 are invited to apply for funds to help them follow their dreams, and awards are made across sports, art, drama and music.
This year the sports awards went to swimmer Jacob Marriott, who regularly places in the Top 10 in national competitions to help with competition costs, and Caitlyn Hollier to help her on her way to play Ice Hockey in the USA.
In the arts awards, Year 12 student Billie Carey was the top recipient, and will use the funds towards more tutoring as she pursues a career in singing and songwriting.
Minna Zhu is using her scholarship to attend the Roger Fox Youth Jazz band experience in Wellington later this year to further her music skills, and Megan McCulloch, talented dancer and choreographer, is heading to the En Pointe Dance Academy Advance Programme while she studies at Victoria University next year.
Anika who was taking a quick break from studying for first year University exams said “This is the fourth year of the Kate Moetaua Foundation and it hasn’t gotten any less rewarding. Continuing mum's legacy is something that my family and I are incredibly proud of. ”
Anika was being filmed for a TV item called Goodsorts, and the awards were filmed, as well as Caitlyn and Billie in action. This will screen on TV1 later this month.
Arrowtown Autumn Festival Community Scholarship
The Arrowtown Autumn Festival Community Scholarships were awarded this week to Year 13 students, Megan McCulloch and Mikayla Evans who each receive $2500.
Mikayla’s impressive list of volunteering started way back in 2009 as a Mini Belle for the Autumn Festival Parade, and over the thirteen years since has grown to include many Wakatipu organisations and events from dance and theatre, the environment, sporting events and school leadership. She can be found regularly volunteering at the Motatapu event, the Queenstown marathon, checking traps for predator free trapping, planting with the Reforestation trust, helping out with Diwali festival events, the Arrowtown Choppers and LUMA. Many of you would have seen Mikayla helping out at the Breakfast Club, involved in school musicals, a STARS mentor, the SVA member, and photographing school events.
Megan’s love of dance and choreography has created many opportunities for her to give back including school and community productions. Around the school Megan has been a STARS peer mentor, a Student Volunteer Army, very involved in the annual school musicals, the 40 Hour famine, and a member of the Wakatipu Youth Council. She also helps out in the community in other ways such as the cancer society Daffodil Day, a mental health initiative Letters to Strangers and much loved productions like the Christmas Show.
“We were extremely impressed with the high calibre of applications received this year and are humbled by the amazing community work being undertaken by our local youth. We were looking to recognise and celebrate our grass roots volunteers who go the extra mile for our community,” said Autumn Festival Chair Nichola Bentley.
“The Autumn Festival is primarily an event run by volunteers for the community, so its fitting that we look for and award our youth volunteers.”
Grants and Scholarships Coordinator Euni Borrie from the Wakatipu Community Foundation who administered the Scholarship thanked Megan and Mikayla, and all the youth volunteers, for their efforts “which makes our Wakatipu Community a better place for all of us.”
Both are planning on tertiary study at Victoria University in Wellington in 2023.
Veolia, which runs Queenstown’s water, wastewater and stormwater services, has long been renowned for their innovation, commitment to community and sustainable environmental practices. It was as a result of these values and a partnership with the Wakatipu High School Foundation that Jason Climo and the team at Veolia Australia & New Zealand developed the $5,000 Veolia Scholarship towards a school leaver's first year studying natural resources engineering at a tertiary institution.
The inaugural Veolia Scholarship was awarded to Harry McVicar this week, a student whose values strongly align with Veolia’s.
Thanks Veolia for supporting our students!
2022 Mana Pounamu Awards
The Mana Pounamu Award celebrates Maori achievement in Secondary Schools across the Otago region. It acknowledges high performance academically as well as achievement in the areas of sport, culture, leadership and service.
Last week the prestigious ceremony to present these awards was held in Dunedin. This year the Wakatipu High School Mana Pounamu Award recipients are:
- Xavier Small - Junior (Yrs 9-11) award
- Keeley Erskine- Senior (Yrs 12-13) award
Both Xavier and Keeley have had outstanding success in sport and academic achievement this year and have been excellent role models for the school. We are proud to have nominated them for this award. Ka pai te mahi!
Student Volunteer Army
Congratulations to Mikaela Patterson who received the WHS Top Volunteer for 2022 from the Student Volunteer Army. Mikaela has volunteered this year for an amazing 630 hours!! Well done Mikaela!
I have been quietly chipping away at gaining my SVA awards during 2022. This year I have volunteered around 630 hours to our community and to our school. I have gained my bronze, silver, and gold awards, and I received the top volunteer for 2022. The overriding feeling I get from volunteering is that it's just great fun. I never feel like I'm working because I'm doing something I really enjoy. Helping others makes you feel good, and I know l have ended up benefiting from volunteering just as much as the people Ive helped. I've gained so much and I highly recommend getting involved in volunteering. Just go for it. Volunteering is so much fun, you get to meet lots of new people, you get to give back to our community, and you get to help people in need.
I encourage you all to sign up for the Student Volunteer Army in 2023!
CURIOUS@WHS Talks with an Astronaut
On Tuesday period 4, we had the pleasure of having NASA astronaut Dr Shannon Walker visit the school to talk to students about her experiences on the International Space Station and the future of humanity in space. She was interviewed by departing Year 13 students Liam McCord and Ruby Phelon, who asked some insightful and intriguing questions and provided us with an interesting interview overall.
Dr Walker has spent just short of a year in space so far, and it was really interesting to hear her talk and get her perspective on things as an astronaut. The highlight was when she recounted a story of when her capsule started losing pressure on re-entry, but thanks to her quick thinking they made it back home safe and sound. She also talked a lot about her pathway to becoming an astronaut and how that was impacted by her gender. On behalf of all of the students and teachers who attended, I would like to thank Dr Walker for providing us with this unique and exciting opportunity, as well as Liam and Ruby for asking some great questions.
Thank you as well to AJ Mason for organising this event and to Catalyst Trust who raised $306 for the WHS Science Buskers with the Catalyst Trust astronaut public talk on Tuesday.
Year 10 Student
QLDC Diversification Snapshots
On Tuesday this week a group of six dedicated senior Economics students attended the QLDC Diversification Snapshots presentations. Quick fire, 4 minute presentations from a range of local businesses and organisations who were all sharing their focus on diversifying our local economy. Insights into diversification of technology, screen and energy were explored along with a look at what the new development of Silverlight Studios in Wanaka will look like. Students were challenged to consider various obstacles we face in Queenstown not seen elsewhere in the country such as our ‘one line in’ electricity supply, access to infrastructure and housing. Everyone thoroughly enjoyed hearing from such a passionate and high calibre group. We are thankful to the QLDC Economic Development team for inviting us to take a group along. Opportunities to see Economics in action and connect learning in the classroom are invaluable.
Gemma Boel - Senior Economics Teacher
AJ Hackett Bungy JumpStart Programme
For years, Queenstown’s school leavers have made a giant leap of faith into their future, celebrating the end of high school with a free Bungy Jump as part of AJ Hackett Bungy JumpStart programme.
"More than 1000 teenagers from Wakatipu High School have taken part in the local rite of passage since the company launched the programme in 2006," says Henry Van Asch, one of the company’s co-founders. It has continued to offer free Bungy jumps to Queenstown’s Wakatipu High School Year 13 students as an exciting challenge that builds confidence as they head into a new stage of their lives.
“There’s nothing like standing on the edge of a bridge – especially at the world home of Bungy, the Kawarau – and jumping towards the unknown. If you can Bungy, you can do anything, it’s all about having the confidence to take on life’s challenges head-first,” said Henry Van Asch.
Managing Exams | Whakahaere Whakamātautau
We are all aware that it is getting towards the most challenging part of the school academic year, exam time. Term 4 usually means one thing for senior secondary school students in particular - exams. Pressure is almost inevitable when it comes to exams and study. The important thing is to not let the pressure turn into overwhelming stress which has a detrimental effect on your wellbeing. Be proactive about your wellbeing and be proactive about managing your stress during exam season. The biggest thing you can do to support your wellbeing during exam season is to be well-prepared.
Exams are pretty much always stressful. You’re not weird if you often find yourself feeling particularly anxious or stressed before or during exams. Exams are nerve-wracking, period. It’s okay – in fact, normal – to feel daunted by the prospect of performing under pressure. As each exam gets closer, the stress and anxiety rises. But it's completely possible to manage some of the stress and it is important to remember that we all experience stress and anxiety differently, so ‘hoea tō waka, mahia tāu mahi - choose what works for you’. At the end of the day, it’s perfectly understandable to be anxious about exams. Thinking about why this is, and implementing strategies to combat it, are the best steps you can take to feel relaxed beforehand.
How to manage exam-related stress and optimise your study:
An important aspect of our Ākonga Profile is the development of self. Key aspects of this are identified as awareness, confidence and wellbeing which are all relevant when we talk about managing ourselves in anticipation of exam season. We've pulled together some useful resources to help you ‘take notice’ in order to understand where stress comes from and optimise your study and keep yourself well during exam season. You've got the skills. Karawhiua, give it your all!:
- Study to your strengths. Some study methods are more effective than others. For example, just looking at your notes won't help you learn them. Stick with strategies aimed at reinforcing the retrieval strength of the content (how well you’re able to recall it out of thin air), which will make a world of difference. The 4 R’s are key: Re-read, Revamp, Recall, Rehearsal. Mrs Ford has created a brilliant resource here with some wise words for students when it comes to preparing for exams: Preparing for Exams 2022
- Reward yourself and break your study up into bite-sized chunks. Use a Pomodoro timer - study for 20 minutes, then reward yourself with 5 on Tik Tok or go and get a snack. Schedule rewards and down time during your study day. Take time to relax and unwind. Ensure you exercise and practice self-care by listening to music, baking or cooking, taking some time for something you enjoy or simply just going outside for some fresh air.
- Talk with friends and older students who make you feel better and not worse about exam season. Find people who reassure you, aren’t catastrophizing, and listen to you and put your worries into perspective.
- Eat well. Ensure you eat breakfast each day. Eat smaller meals throughout the day, rather than big meals that take a huge amount of energy to digest. Decrease your sugar and caffeine intake to avoid energy crashes, and increase your water consumption.
- Say no to commitments that will make you more stressed, and think about some healthy boundaries you can set around catching up with your friends, part-time work, and sports.
- Even though they might not seem like they understand everything you’re going through, parents, caregivers and teachers totally know how it feels to be facing exams. Don’t be afraid to reach out and ask for extra support.
- Try to get eight hours of sleep a night. If you’re stressed about not being able to sleep, there are lots of ways to aid a good night’s sleep such as sleep apps, or journaling before bed.
- When you sit down to study, get rid of all distractions (phones especially!).
- Routines are the magic ticket to feeling “on top of things”, and constructing a routine is a strong tool you have in your arsenal to help you feel more on top of your exams. Routines are like putting up the infrastructure to ensure that all of the things that are inside your control (eating well, exercise, sleep and effective revision) are taken care of.
- Focus on the big picture – the reason you are sitting the exams; to get yourself ahead in life, to get into the course you want next year or whatever your goal is. A helpful activity is to visualise yourself being successful in your exams. Just like very few athletes genuinely love forcing themselves up early to train laps in the freezing cold at 5AM every day, very few people love entering exam halls for the thrill of it. But both parties do it for personal growth. The best athletes in the world still get anxious before they play, just like students. We’re all human.
- You shouldn’t stress about being stressed – it might actually be good for you. We know that small doses of stress can propel you forward and enable you to meet a challenge.
- Keep things in perspective. If something goes wrong in the exam, or if you miss some NCEA credits, it’s not the end of the world. There are always other options.
The role of whānau at exam time:
As whānau of students with exams, we can help by helping them set up a study space and making sure the rest of the family understands they need a wide berth when they’re studying. Give them time off activities and non-urgent family stuff, remind them to go to bed at a regular time each night, show interest about what they’re studying and their plan for study, and encourage them to get plenty of exercise.
Where to go if you need a little extra support:
If you’re really struggling with stress overload and feel burnt out, you’ve tried to make changes but it just isn’t getting any easier or if it's all feeling like it's getting too much, it’s important that you talk to someone. Email 'firstname.lastname@example.org' to talk to one of our counsellors and get support with managing exam-related stress and anxiety.
You can also check out www.smallsteps.org.nz for some tools or strategies which focus on positive thinking and mindfulness to manage stress or anxiety, and help when you’re feeling down.
Good luck for your upcoming exams. Kia kaha, Kia māia, Kia manawanui | Be strong, be brave, be steadfast.
Sports and Active Recreation News
Artistic Swimming Nationals
Over the first weekend of the October school holidays, Wakatipu Artistic Swimming competed in the New Zealand Artistic Swimming National Championships in Invercargill. Year 10 student Alisha Messingham represented WHS and competed as an Aquanaut soloist placing 5th overall and finished top in the South Island.
National Speed Skating Champs
A number of WHS students competed at the New Zealand National Speed Skating Champs in Auckland at the end of the Term 3 holidays. Congratulations to the following students on their results;
Eva Hemingway - 1st Junior Ladies
Daphne Ricketts - 2nd Junior Ladies
Poppy Wearing - 3rd Sub-Junior women
Southland Indoor Climbing Champs
WHS students climbed well and can be proud of their involvement in the Southland Climbing Competition in Fiordland last week. The level of competition and route setting was definitely at a higher level than previous years. The students competed in two teams of four, Wakatipu Gold and Wakatipu Navy. Through the course of the day they were challenged with a total of 16 routes on 8 different ropes. Each rope had an ‘easy’ route or a ‘hard’ route. They were awarded points according to the climb chosen and what zone (how far up the wall) they reached. Climbing ability and experience made a difference however it was also about working as a team to ensure everyone had their share of time on the wall and belaying.
Results were for individuals only and included:
Alisa Schenk - 1st Junior Girl
Cybella Briscoe - 3rd Junior Girl
Tayah Vivian - 4th Junior Girl
Oscar McCartney - 3rd Junior Boy
There are plans to make the competition a series next year with events to take place in Invercargill, Te Anau and Queenstown! Thank you to Janet Briscoe and Saskia van der Geest who took these students down to compete.
Central Otago Junior Touch Champs
It was a great day out at the Central Otago Junior Touch Champs in Cromwell on Thursday. WHS won both the A and B grades in hard fought final games against Mt Aspiring and Cromwell respectively. Ka pai te mahi to our students on their efforts, composure and leadership. A big thank you to Otago Secondary School Sport for running the tournament and to Mr Sinnamon and Mrs Nathan for coaching the teams.
Southland Secondary School Sports Awards
Last night the Southland Secondary School Sports Awards were held at Ascot Park Hotel in Invercargill. WHS had a number of students selected as finalists as well as three of the five teams in the Team of the Year category. It was a lovely night out celebrating regional sporting success in Southland. Below are a list of our finalists and winners. Congratulations to all of these students!
Olivia Key - Senior Sportswoman of the Year Finalist - Winner
Marley King Smith - Senior Sportsman of the Year Finalist - Highly Commended
Mackenzi Jackson - Senior Sportswoman of the Year Finalist - Highly Commended
Siena Mackley - Junior Sportswoman of the Year Finalist - Highly Commended
Malik Boatwright - Junior Sportsman of the Year Finalist - Highly Commended
U16 Boys Coxed Quad - Team of the Year Finalist - Winners
U17 Girls Coxed Quad - Team of the Year Finalist
Get2Go - Team of the Year Finalist
Steve Henderson - Volunteer Award
New to WHS?
If you have just recently joined Wakatipu High School and keen to find out more information about sport and active recreation opportunities please visit our website to see what is on offer and join the google classrooms of those activities you are keen to participate in: https://www.sporty.co.nz/wakatipu
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 email@example.com.
Support Sport at WHS
Jump on board and support the team by liking or following the Wakatipu High School Sports Facebook page. 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. https://www.facebook.com/WakatipuHighSchoolSports/
Director of Sport
Arts News and Information
Alexandra Music Competition
The Alexandra Music Society competitions were held last weekend.
Congratulations to Rachel Yoo who gained the Most Outstanding Performance award for her rendition of piano works by Schumann and Debussy.
Central Soundwaves is happening this Sunday at Yonder starting at 5pm. This is a great opportunity for our musicians to perform, and everyone is welcome to come and enjoy the music. Thanks to Rockformation, the Wakatipu Youth Trust and Yonder for their continued support of our students.
Showquest 2023 (Dance and Drama Competition)
If you are interested in being a student leader of Showquest 2023, please contact Monica Parker at firstname.lastname@example.org
2023 Musical Audition for We Will Rock You
All students who have filled the form to audition for the 2023 musical will have received an email from Mr Jake Hansen. Junior auditions are next week so remember to be on time.
Let Us Know
The Arts department would like to know about any artistic achievements that students have attained outside of school be it in drama, dance, music or visual arts. Please send through details and photos to email@example.com
Support the Arts
We are always looking for local professional performing and visual artists to visit our school and run workshops for our students. If you or someone you know is interested, please contact Monica Parker the Arts Coordinator at firstname.lastname@example.org
Follow our school’s Instagram page for recent successes or news within the school’s Arts Department at whsartdepartment
If students are finished with their uniform because they are leaving school, please consider donating the uniform to school. We have families that would gratefully receive free second hand uniform items.
Please take any clean, tidy uniform items you wish to donate to Student Services.
Night ‘n Day
Night ‘n Day are pleased to offer four scholarships for students in the Whakatipu Basin. Each of our stores will support a successful applicant with part-time jobs during term time and up to 40hrs per week during term breaks and summer holidays with an hourly pay rate of $21.50. We will also provide during the term breaks - a 1 day learning program with guest speakers from mentors and business leaders in the region. At the end of Year 13, if you have completed 900hrs of work and attended the 3 learning days, we will provide you with an additional $1200 to go towards your next experience.
This will be a great chance to find out what the FMCG industry is all about and the opportunities that are possible from retail to new product development, from leading teams to health and safety, logistics to accounting and finance to sales and marketing.
FMCG retail is more than just checkouts and trolleys.
- why you want the scholarship
- how $1200 will help you to achieve what you want to do after year 13
- why we should choose you
- which store you want to work in – Shotover, Church, Kawarau Heights, Arrowtown. (PS if you can get to more than one, you will have more than one chance to be considered)
Send your application to Gavin – email@example.com
Applications need to be provided by Thursday 3rd November.
Mobile Health | Hauora Taiwhenua Rural New Zealand Health Scholarships
Are you intending to study Health Science / Nursing / Medicine / Occupational Therapy etc... Don’t forget to apply for the Mobile Health | Hauora Taiwhenua Rural New Zealand Health Scholarships!
The four scholarships (with at least one targeted at Māori/Pasifika students) each valued at $5,000, will be offered to rural youth entering their first year of full-time undergraduate study in Nursing, Medicine, or allied health related courses at any New Zealand Universities, Polytechnics, or PTEs.
The closing date for applications is 5pm, 10 November 2022. For more information on how to apply and the eligibility criteria, see attached guidelines and cover letter.
Careers - Job Vacancies for Students
Student Job Vacancies can be viewed at the link below. Please join the google classroom with the code: 3spycgk