September 3, 2021

Dear Parents and Guardians,

In my video editorial, I am focussing on the importance of reducing pressure during this time of change and uncertainty – for children and adults. As always, please make contact with us if we can support you.

With best wishes,

Debbie Dunwoody

Senior School


Senior School

September 3, 2021

Dear Parents and Guardians,

This past fortnight we have continued to see our students fully involved in activities remotely. I know I say it frequently, but we have so much to be proud of at CGGS and the lockdown has only served to strengthen within us all a sense of resolve.

Over the past fortnight the many staff who assist our student leaders in the coordination of the vast array of co-curricular programs on offer at CGGS, have had the great pleasure of interviewing each of the Year 10 and 11 students who have applied for a leadership role in 2022. The highlight for me in these interviews was the number of students who have used our school values during this pandemic as their guiding principles. Most frequently the students highlighted how important the values of hope and courage have been to them in the past 18 months. The students were able to share challenges, experiences and opportunities where they have actively thought of and used these values to assist them.

During the Senior School Assembly on 24 August, it was my pleasure to announce the Monash Scholars Program recipients for 2021. The Monash Scholars Program provides selected high achieving students from Years 10 – 12 with an exclusive opportunity to engage with Monash University. Each year students in Year 10 from over 130 schools are invited to apply to be a part of this prestigious program.

The program is offered by Monash University to give the successful students a unique head start into university life. It provides opportunities for students to explore their passions, develop a broad suite of study, personal and academic skills, gives students the knowledge and confidence to make the right course and career choices. The program also enables the recipients to build a network of student peers, academic, and future employment contacts.

The program begins in Year 10, and continues through Years 11 and 12, with participants being invited to a number of events and activities each year. Students who receive this award are expected to commit around 20 hours a year to the program through participation in a range of events and activities. Students receiving this award who successfully gain a place at Monash University for their tertiary studies after completing Year 12 continue to receive benefits including leadership and ambassador opportunities.

We congratulate our 2021 Monash Scholars Tara Rastogi, Nektaria Toscas and Natalie Chung and wish them well as they commence in this prestigious program.

We also send congratulations to Sophie Chang (Year 9 – Gold Medal Year 9-10 and Overall) and Lucy Ciro (Year 9 – Silver Medal in the Girls Division) on their success at the Northern Star Online Chess Zone competition for Secondary students on Monday 23 August.

Last Friday night over 50 students joined the Service Learning Captains, Eloise Holwill, Year 12 and Amelia Westerman, Year 11 for the annual Winter Sleep Out. This event has always seen many students and staff take a hands-on approach to how at CGGS we work with community groups such as The Salvation Army to support homelessness initiatives. Last year the event went remote and again this year the captains were able to ensure our school motto, “Utilis in Ministerium” was lived out.  Please see the article written by Eloise and Amelia later in this edition of Camnews.

This week we thank the Health and PE Department for sharing activities and challenges for all students and staff as we all recognised National Health and Physical Education Week. The activities depicted below included a mixture of individual and House based challenges that were shared by Head of Physical Education and Health, Nareen Robinson on Monday via an email encouraging all to take part with a promotional line of “From trick shots to steps and domino challenges, workouts and climbing virtual mountains there is something for everyone!”

This week students in Years 9 to 12 took part in Learning Conversations with their parents and teachers. Running alongside these we had our Upskill by Design sessions which provide students with an opportunity to learn in a different format, developing a range of skills that are complementary to but very separate from the learning undertaken in their everyday classes.  Kate Manners shares more detail about the activities undertaken in her article below.

To all the fathers in our Senior School community I wish you a very happy Father’s Day this coming Sunday.

Cathy Poyser
Deputy Principal / Head of Senior School

Learning by Design

It’s been a wild ride with the launch of our Upskill …BY DESIGN program this year amidst ongoing restrictions in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. We’re heartened to have the robust flexibility of the program’s design hold true with its’ ability to operate, face-to-face on site, online or in a hybrid capacity.

For CGGS it is an ongoing priority to equip students with the necessary skills to navigate but more importantly absorb and flourish in response to ongoing changes. Developing in students the agility and tenacity in the way they learn and experience the world, is an essential step to thriving in the future and a fundamental tenant to why we’ve introduced the Upskill …BY DESIGN Program in 2021. Upskill …BY DESIGN intends to provide innovative and authentic learning experiences geared at developing the behaviours, mindsets and skills of students to be adaptive in the way they work going forward.

Across the programs at Years 7-12, we’ve enabled students to develop depth in their skill portfolios, an essential complement to traditional metrics of success which are valued and expected now by both tertiary institutions and workplaces. Programs were also designed to marry with the learning spotlight of each year level, as described in our Teaching and Learning architecture. To this end, 30 different programs have taken place over the year. Additionally, understanding that teacher wellbeing, school wellbeing and student wellbeing is inextricably linked (Waters, 2017) and work in service to the academic success of learners, reinforced the intentional design of dedicated wellbeing time for our whole school community, as part of the program.

In our fifth and sixth Upskill …BY DESIGN Days, which ran parallel to Year 9 and 10, and VCE Learning Conversations, students engaged in a variety of activities, some of which are described below.

All of our year levels have had the opportunity to complete a Graphic Recording Credential in service of their communication skills and this time around, our Year 7 and Year 8 students participated. We’ve been excited to partner with Visual Storytellers, Think In Colour and their founder, Jessamy Gee, who is also an old grammarian. The course, Listen-Think-Draw is a three module, online course for sketchnoters, budding graphic recorders, facilitators, teachers, consultants and anyone interested in leveraging the power of visual thinking and communication for themselves and others. Each section of the course included various journal activities, downloads and consolidation exercises. Those students who have completed the course, will receive a digital credential attesting to this, later in the year.

Connecting to the communications suite of Upskill By Design offerings, Year 8 and 9 students participated in Poetry Slam sessions. In their sessions, students were led in activities that enabled them to create with words, become poetry guerrillas in their local community, and make connections to their wellbeing. The day’s program began with a poetry immersion and exploration of forms, followed by an intensive workshop with guest presenter, slam poet and spoken word performer Emilie Zoey Baker. Students enjoyed Emilie’s vibrant and approachable style and she introduced different styles of new and classic poetry including google poetry, blackout, insta poems and YouTube performances. Students (and teachers!) participated in a ‘poetry hack’ where they all completed a poem though a guided exercise. Following their workshop, students were encouraged to compose poetry connecting to their year level spotlights of identity and design. 

Click below to read some Year 8 student reflections on the day.

At Year 9, the Safe@Work certificate was undertaken online by students. A necessary requirement for participating in the work experience program at Year 10 in 2022, this certificate is designed to help students improve their knowledge of occupational health and safety, understand hazards and laws, learn practical solutions to health and safety problems and understand their responsibilities and the responsibilities of employers. Completion of a General Certificate and a Health and Community Services Certificate was undertaken with students choosing the third module for completion, aligning with the co-design learning spotlight for this year level.

Year 10 and Year 12, students participated in an interactive self-defence workshop with Michelle from Elite Training and Sports Medicine. The session aimed to provide students with the theory and understanding on how to best protect themselves in difficult situations, including those where a threat to physical safety might occur. Michelle spoke about the importance of knowing when to perform self-defence, and the four stages or types of responses our body can have when in a threatening situation: Fear, Freeze Flight and Fight. The Four F’s provide a framework for students to know how to appropriately respond to situations and make decisions about when self-defence may or may not be necessary. To conclude, Michelle engaged and taught the students in a range of practical movements and techniques that they can draw upon to protect themselves, whilst also discussing the important safety precautions and considerations.

Our Year 12 students also had the opportunity to connect with the group WIRL (Wellness in Real Life) a business which supports young women to optimise their mental wellbeing through food, by focusing on its power to provide nourishment, social engagement & enjoyment. Bree and Alicia, worked with the students to discuss the importance of a healthy diet and encourage the practice of intuitive eating – where ‘how we eat’ is just as important as ‘what we eat’. As the Year 12 students head towards end of year exams, Bree and Alicia shared how the students can enhance their eating patterns to best support their mental performance and wellbeing in this important time in their studies. Additionally, we also value connecting students to great female role models outside the school. WIRL are a female led start-up who are also working in the AI space, with Bree recently been awarded the Luminary Tech Visionary Victorian Young Achiever Award for this work. Facilitating this connection for Year 12 students may be the beginning of a much broader network for some of our students moving forward.

Similar role modelling was also a big part of the Year 10 Upskill …BY DESIGN program this time around, with students coming together to take part in interactive and immersive activities to learn more about global issues for women as a complement to their Service Learning program. Students heard from guest speaker Kathy Kaplan, from Impact, who shared her unique perspective and experiences working with women in crisis. The focus was on exploring the realities of challenges that women experience both here in Australia and globally to develop a deeper understanding of the importance of what we can do to make sustainable change.

At CGGS, our obligation is to prepare our students to learn and work in settings that are responsive to now as much as they are anticipatory of the future. In setting in motion Upskill …By Design in 2021, we’re building upon the work that is already happening through our teaching, learning and wellbeing programs. We’re looking forward to continuing this momentum in 2022 and creating great spaces and opportunities for our students to flourish.

Kate Manners
Head of Strategic Initiatives

Duke of Edinburgh Awards

The Duke of Edinburgh’s Award is an internationally recognised award with participants from over 130 countries. Over 8 million young people have participated worldwide. The award is open to anyone aged 14-24 in 3 different levels, Bronze, Silver and Gold. The program creates opportunities for young people to develop skills, get physically active, give service and experience adventure. The aim is to build valuable skills that will equip young people for life and work by committing to achieve goals over an extended period of time and reflecting upon the tasks used to achieve these goals. In coming CamNews releases, we would like to share with the CGGS community the achievements of past participants and how they have reflected upon their completion of the GOLD AWARD.

For further information regarding the Duke of Edinburgh Award, please contact Mr. Shane Maycock, Deputy Head of Senior School at

Isabella Wood and Bella Fary, who are currently undertaking their Silver award, contacted a number of our alumni to ask if they would share their experiences of the DOE during their time at the School.  This week the girls spoke with Lucy Bartram, Class of 2019, about her involvement with the program during her time at CGGS.

Lucy, was there anyone important to you in your DOE experience?

There wasn’t one particular person, the group of girls in my year level who were also completing their DOE were important in my journey. As we were all completing our award at the same time, we were able to do our Gold Adventurous Journey together at Wilsons Prom. It made the experience really enjoyable and definitely worth it.

How would you improve your experience if you did it again?

The experience was really rewarding for me so there’s probably not much I would do differently. I gained so much from all the things I was involved in all the way from my Bronze to my Gold. If you are currently completing or planning to complete your Gold award, I would say plan your Residential Project early as it can be a tricky thing to find!

What would you tell someone just starting or thinking about DOE?

I would definitely say go for it, it added so much to my schooling life, I was able to do things I never would’ve done. It allowed me to form friendships with people I otherwise may not have, and it definitely pushed me to do things out of my comfort zone.  If anyone is thinking about doing it, I would suggest getting a friend, do your Bronze which is only 3 months and see how you like it. I would start as soon as you can, the earlier you start the better, why wait?

Interview by Isabella Wood and Bella Fary

Library News

Ivy and the books are all missing the students, a library is not a truly a library without the presence of the readers themselves.

During remote learning I would like to remind our students that we have an eBook and Audio book platform and App called “Sora” which as a Camberwell student both you and your daughter have free access to.

Students have been emailed instructions on how to either download the Sora App or access via the Library website link on SEQTA. It’s a wonderful resource that you can use to access the books that you may not currently be able to obtain hard copies of.  If you need any assistance, do not hesitate to reach out.

The Library and Ivy (and the books!) are all waiting for you to come back and enjoy. With a small number of teachers and students on campus, Ms Biggs, Ruby and Ivy have just finished a new puzzle called Bookish Cats – they are keeping the Library going until you return.

Take care everyone and Happy Reading!

Anne Devenish
Head of Library

School Maths Olympics

On Sunday 22 August, four CGGS Students from Year 10 and Year 11, participated in the Melbourne University Mathematics and Statistics Society School Maths Olympics. The School Maths Olympics is a fast-paced competition that combines mathematical problem-solving ability and teamwork.

Our students worked through three rounds of problems in a one-hour time limit, with each round getting progressively harder. I was very impressed with the leadership skills each student demonstrated. Skills of delegation, collaboration, communication, and a whole host of problem-solving, and mathematical thinking skills were constantly on display.

I would like to congratulate the following students for their efforts:

Noyesha Agarwal, Salwa Saiba, Scarlett Wei and Shuhan Zeng (aka The CGGS Mathletes.)

Here is a reflection from our students:

We appreciated the opportunity to participate in the Schools Maths Olympics hosted by the University of Melbourne this year. It was such a great chance to step outside of our comfort zone, to apply the maths skills we’ve learnt to some challenging but interesting maths questions. We also had a wonderful time enjoying working with our fabulous “CGGS Mathletes” whilst relishing the beauty of maths. We all had great fun and can’t wait to join it next year!

They represented our school with fantastic enthusiasm and pride.

Anthony Pasinati
Head of Mathematics

Debaters Association of Victoria Competition

The Debaters Association of Victoria competition has concluded for 2021. This year, 45 students from Years 8 to 12 represented CGGS over four competition nights. Three competition nights were face-to-face debates, while the final round and finals playoffs took place over Zoom. Debaters argued for and against propositions such as ‘That we regret the rise of cancel culture,’ ‘That Australian political party leaders be elected directly by the public,’ and ‘That schools should not teach texts that are deemed to contain discriminatory content.’

Two of our debaters have shared their reflections on the competition:

Emma Zhi
School Debating Captain

Member of A Grade Team 1

“Thus ends the DAV debating competition for 2021 with much to celebrate! DAV debating has offered every participant an opportunity to both flex their analytical muscles and strengthen relationships with their team members. I certainly looked forward to bouncing ideas around with my friends during lunchtimes – the human interaction has been sorely missed during yet another year of lockdowns! Despite being in a situation where face-to-face interaction was a privilege, every participant rose to the challenge. One of our teams, comprising of Year 9 students, Ishana Suriyapperuma, Sara Rowland, Helena Maunder, Samantha Fan and Grace Barnes, made it to the state finals! An amazing achievement by any standards, and extraordinary given the conditions of this year! I highly recommend DAV to all students. You can build your confidence, critical thinking and speaking skills without it ever feeling like work!”

Sara Rowland, 9A

Member of D Grade Team 2

“I found participating in DAV debating a rewarding experience. It allowed me to grow my debating, communication, and collaboration skills. Over the course of the year, we competed in 5 rounds, with differing topics that allowed us to think outside of the box. The topic that I found the most interesting was our first topic, ‘That the government should subsidise tourism in regional Victoria’. This topic allowed me to research an area that I found engaging and provided me with a chance to find out more about the economy of tourism. Overall, DAV debating has been an amazing opportunity so, I would recommend anyone who can, participates and I look forward to competing with my team in the finals!”

I would like to congratulate all our debaters on their fantastic efforts, and thank our debating coaches (Ms. Jennifer Gordon, Ms. Chris Anton, Ms. Kate Manners and Mr. Ron Bell) for their support.

Ian Lyell
Debating Coordinator

House Cupcake Decorating Competition

It was great to see so many entries at the recent Cupcake decorating competition. We hope that many of our community have seen the wonderfully talented student creations via our socials, and I must admit I was glad I was not tasting all that icing! The cupcakes were judged by the House Captains and Heads of House, before the Top 3 from each House were judged by a select panel on Originality, Creativity and Use of House Colour.


1st Place: Janice Wong (Schofield)

2nd Place: Kayla Foo (Singleton)

3rd Place: Katrina and Laura Tong (Taylor)

Thanks to Mrs. Goad, Mrs. Poyser and Chloe Langley for judging!

Students who were also voted in the Top 3 from their house (WHICH WAS EXTREMELY CHALLENGING TO DECIDE – I don’t know how the House Captains and HoH’s managed):

Singleton: Annabel and Phoebe Plummer, Elsie McLean,

Lawrence: Ellen Kontossis, Jessica Leung, Sophia Zeitoune

Schofield: Isabel Betts, Amelie Toh

Taylor: Charli Lincke, Zara Cheung

Shane Maycock
Deputy Head of Senior School – Co-Curricular Programs

Winter Sleepout

Last Friday 27 August, we held The Winter Sleepout, an annual event the school holds aligning with the work of The Salvation Army. This year the Sleepout was run remotely and the girls participating were asked to sleep outside or on the floor inside at home, in order to replicate what it might be like to be homeless and sleeping rough. As part of the evening we heard from four guest speakers, Grace Davidson, Norman Gale, Shane Austin and Major Warren Elliot, from both local and national branches of the Salvos. Our guests were so engaging and knowledgeable and it was amazing to hear their passion as they spoke about local initiatives and impact in the Boroondara area, the history of the Salvos in Australia and how the pandemic has impacted homelessness in Victoria. After our speakers finished, a Q&A session was held with students asking such good questions which our speakers were so happy to answer.

After we said goodbye to our speakers, we held some fun individual and group activities, including an online scavenger hunt and team Kahoot challenge which everyone loved. After a break for dinner, groups of girls called and zoomed each other to play games and bake some goodies, before having the option to return to watch Matilda all together.

It was such a fun night and we thank everyone who joined us, thank you for being so engaged and making the night so enjoyable! We are so grateful to everyone for showing their support for such a prominent issue, raising money for the Camberwell Salvos food bank and to the guest speakers for coming and sharing their insights and impact at Salvos, it was truly inspiring!

Amelia, Eloise and Jennifer Gordon
The Service Learning Team

STEAM Marine Padlet

Lockdown may mean we cannot travel at present, but we can plan where we want to go once restrictions are lifted. The Year 10 STEAM Marine class have helped by researching fantastic Victorian coastal locations for you to visit, namely our Victorian marine parks and sanctuaries.

Victoria is home to some amazing marine life and habitats. To help conserve and manage these, there are 13 marine national parks and 11 sanctuaries scattered across our beautiful coastline. These diverse marine areas are legally protected and cover approximately 5.3% of our marine waters.

To access the work of our STEAM marine students and find out more about the diverse marine areas you can visit once we are able to travel within Victoria again, visit the Padlet and social media post created by the students.


PASSWORD FOR PADLET: marine_national_parks

Sue Mason
Science Teacher

Term 2 Sports Awards

 After a year long break from our traditional Term 2 sports, we were very excited to be back playing AFL, Hockey, Netball, Water Polo and Cross Country. Students were dedicated to early morning or lunchtime training sessions and developed their skills and knowledge of the games throughout the term. Although not all sports were completed, we are very proud of our Senior Netball A team who were zone winners and awarded a pennant for their performance throughout Term 2.

Please find below a list of students who should be very proud of their season, as they have been awarded as Most Valuable Player, or the Coach’s Award. We look forward to students receiving their certificates when we return to school.

100KM Club Awards

During remote learning we have been running the remote 100km Club. Students have been encouraged to log their results whenever they went for a run. Even short distances add up over time and it has been very exciting to see all the kilometres accumulate over the past few months. We have been overwhelmed by the number of students logging runs throughout remote learning and for those students who haven’t achieved their badge yet, there will be plenty more opportunities while you’re at CGGS.

Congratulations to the following students who have earned their 100km club badge. We look forward to students receiving their badges when we return to school.

Lauren Law
Head of Sport

Flying High with Chinese

Madeleine Giagoudakis (10D) recently participated in the CLTAV & CLTAT 2021 Hanyuqiao Speaking and Performance Competition for Second Language students of Chinese in Year 10 and Year 11. To enter the competition, candidates were required to submit video clips which include a 2–3-minute speech centred around the topic ‘Flying High with Chinese,’ and a 3–4-minute Chinese cultural performance.

In her speech, Maddy talked about the importance of learning Chinese and her experiences of learning the language. Maddy chose to showcase her Chinese cultural skills by doing Chinese calligraphy. Congratulations to Maddy for her excellent performance in the competition, where she won fourth place.  She received the Encouragement Award and a $50 book voucher. Maddy found the experience rewarding and fun and encourages other students to participate if they are afforded an opportunity to do so.

Lin Zhang
Chinese Teacher

House Debating Heats

The annual House Debating competition continued last Friday 27 August, with Semi-Finals for the Junior and Intermediate teams, and the Final for our Senior debates between Taylor and Lawrence. Once again, students showed adeptness at adjusting to the online format, and creatively engaged with their audiences via Zoom.

The topics were ‘In a digital age, we should not expect our data to remain private’ for the Junior division, ‘Monuments to all historical figures should remain’ for the Intermediate division and ‘Should care-bots be used in aged care?’ for the Senior division. The quality of the debates was outstanding, and the level of competition and strategy was impressive to see!

The Junior and Intermediate divisions had their final today from 1.15-2.15pm. The topics are ‘Should Australia ban fast food restaurant advertising?’ for the Junior division and ‘Should social media websites be able to ban certain users?’ for the Intermediate division.

The results of the previous round can be found below.

Emma Zhi & Nirvana Watkins
School Debating and Literary Captain / Head of English

Threatened Species Bake Off

The Australian Government “Threatened Species Bake Off” (#TSBakeOff) is an annual baking competition that aims to spread awareness about endangered native Australian animals. In lockdown, many people (including me) have been spending a lot of time in the kitchen, trying out recipes and perfecting sourdough, so a bake off sounded like a great lockdown project with an important message. This year, the theme was “ecosystem engineers”, focusing on species that contribute to the way eco systems function.

For my entry, I chose to make a Northern Bettong cake. Their national conservation status is endangered, and the estimated surviving population is only around 1200-2500, with their numbers affected largely by feral cats and other predators. The Bettong plays an important role in the ecosystem by digging and turning the soil, aiding in the decomposition of leaf litter and dispersal of seeds and fungal spores.

The competition is open for anyone to join, and I would definitely recommend it to anyone looking for some lockdown baking ideas. Thank you to Dr. Mason for recommending it to me, and my family for being willing taste-testers!

Laura Tong – 9B

Music Connections from Home

Our Senior School musicians are continuing to work towards a range of video recordings of the pieces that were to be presented at our Melbourne Recital Centre Centenary Concert in August. Whilst it has not been possible for co-curricular music groups to rehearse together regularly during this remote learning period, music making continues to be a positive influence. Creative connections are still being made through Zoom sessions, private tuition lessons and focused practice at home. We are seeing and hearing some terrific results, as students take time away from screens to focus on their performance skills. It has been encouraging to see our musicians develop independent practice routines, achieve personal goals, overcome technical challenges, and refine the expressive content within their ensemble pieces.

Our School Music Captains, Zara Mammone and Zara Price have also been busy creating music quizzes and interactive challenges for students to engage with. The Music Family photo wall is taking shape, alongside documenting the creative work taking place at home. We are very much looking forward to returning to live rehearsals and performances when school resumes. For now, however, connecting through music while staying safe at home is enabling students to maintain important friendships and share their love of music.

Kate Savige and Rohan Mack
Directors of Music

Junior School


Junior School

September 3, 2021

Final Stages of Term 3

With one week left of Term 3, there is still a lot happening at Ormiston. As I have said many times in 2020, and this year, our remote learning program continues to be of high quality. The challenge for us has been to ensure a sustainable approach to our teaching and learning program remotely, while at the same time, not to have our Foundation – Year 6 students on a computer screen each day for very long periods of time.

In Term 4, we will continue to review our subject offerings within our remote learning program from our class and specialist teachers and we will continue to make decisions in the best interests of our Junior School students.

Book Week

I would like to thank our Library Teacher, Sally Spencer for organising a range of activities for Book Week last week. Mrs Spencer has written an article in today’s CamNews that outlines the many ways we celebrated this important event.

Wellbeing Day

Not only was it Book Week last week, it was also a Wellbeing Day for staff and students at both Junior and Senior School. Students had the opportunity to engage in a variety of different activities throughout the day with the highlight being a magician who showed everyone many wonderful tricks, as well as, explaining how some of his magic tricks work.

Ormiston Art Show

Towards the end of Term 3 each year, I always look forward to our Ormiston Art Show. Once again this year, the school community is unable to visit the School and look at the art pieces in person. I would like to congratulate our Art Teacher, Mrs Gibson who has organised an online padlet that showcases the outstanding artwork of our students.

Mountfield Maestros

Our Junior School co-curricular activities have continued in a variety of forms during remote learning this term and next week we have over 50 students performing online for our annual Term 3 Mountfield Maestros Music event. I would like to wish the following students all the best and look forward to their individual performances online.

Foundation – Year 3

Ting Xuan Quek

Chloe Gu

Qianqian Wu

Joelle Whelan

Alexandra Law

Alice Lin

Sofia Rampa

Isabella-Rose Stepsys

Elsa Lu

Annabelle Zhang

Aurelia Poon

Aanya Chopra

Audrey Cheung

Ellie Li

Yui Yu

Emma Adel

Sabrina Zhao

Dora Zhu

Angelina Zhao

Annicle Li

Zoe Raspin

Isali Ranasingha

Angela Wu

Elfie Fan

Madeleine Law


Year 4 – 6

Isla Kang

Hanna Lindsay

Ailey Poon

Lauren Tang

Aaratrika Kadam

Ava Pao

Ellie Tsigounis

Iris Lu

Ruth Whelan

Amiya Rajakulendran

Georgia Papadopoulos

Alina Xu

Amelia Adel

Alisha lagana

Ann Brookes

Zihan Li

Nicole Zhang

Rudra Santhosh

Sophie Wong

Mo Lin Yu

Cosette Tsjin

Sarah Luo

Chloe Lau

Aathana Sivapalan

Jasmine Li


Wishing all our Ormiston families a restful weekend.

Yours sincerely,

Paul Donohue
Head of Junior School

Book Week – 21 to 27 August 2021

Book Week is an annual celebration of Australian books, authors, illustrators, and the joy of reading. This year, even though we are learning and working from home, many wonderful book related activities and celebrations occurred within our school community.

Students and staff from several year levels participated in Zoom story sessions and dressed up as their favourite book character. There was also an array of fun and interactive book related activities provided for all students. A special Storytime and dress up activity for ELC students and staff was also a huge success.

Through Seesaw and in our assembly this week, the winning titles in the Early Childhood, Picture Book and New Illustrator categories have been shared with our students. The Junior School Library has also added all the winning books and shortlisted titles across all categories to our collection and we encourage all students to read and borrow these wonderful stories.

Please find the winners of the Early Childhood, Picture Book, New Illustrator, Non-Fiction, and Younger Readers prizes here,

Sally Spencer
Library Teacher

National Science Week – 14 – 22 August 2021

The theme was Food: Different by Design, honouring the United Nations International Year of Fruits and Vegetables and the International Year of Creative Economy for Sustainable Development.

During remote learning, Ormiston students (and their families) proved to be creative food designers – many students took part in the at-home activities on the Science Week Padlet, and shared their thoughts about eating insects and their photographs of ice-cream in a bag, boba tea and colourful ‘lava lamps’ – all made with common kitchen ingredients, a bit of science, and a bit of fun!

Thank you to everyone who took part – on behalf of the whole Science Department, it was fantastic to see our school community taking Science out of the lab and into the kitchen.

Penny Dumsday
STEAM Teacher

Ormiston Remote Learning Highlights and Olympic Spirit Awards

Over the past fortnight, I have continued to be blown away by our students’ contributions to the remote learning program. During Assembly, I highlighted the exceptional learning that has been occurring in each year level. The students in all year levels should be congratulated for their achievements throughout the term and in particular, the following areas this term:

Our Foundation students are now all confidently and fluently reading decodable texts independently.

Year 1
Our Year 1s developed their creativity, problem solving and persistence when exploring forces by creating their own Rube Goldberg Machines.

Year 2
Our Year 2s are now segmenting their spelling words into syllables and beginning to use spelling rules to add suffixes to words with increasing confidence.

Year 3
Our Year 3s are now experts in Australian Geography and have been teaching the community about our significant natural features and landmarks.

Year 4
Our Year 4s are budding biologists who have been developing their understanding of some of the complex ecosystems that exist around the world.

Year 5
Our Year 5s have been seeking out how to encourage sustainability and can confidently explain how we can support the environment through housing design.

Year 6
Our Year 6 students have been investigating the experiences of migrants and have developed informative monologues designed to help others to understand the phases of migration, and the complex range of push and pull factors that influenced different people’s decisions to move countries.

It was an absolute joy to share two of our Year 1 students, Olive and Estelle’s, Rube Goldberg Machines with the school community during Assembly.

Some of the key adjectives that classroom and specialist teachers used when nominating this fortnight’s award winners were: courageous, persistent, thorough, initiative, thoughtful, creativity, focussed, curious and committed.

Congratulations to the following students for being awarded an Ormiston Olympic Spirit Badge this week

Foundation – Qianqian, Lena, Alex, Joelle, Chloe, Ting Xuan

Year 1 – Elsa, Isabella-Rose, Estelle, Olive, Alice, Sofia, Aryana

Year 2 – Lucy, Emma A, Audrey, Annabelle, Aurelia, Aanya, Ellie

Year 3 – Isali, Dora, Angelina, Maddie, Zoe, Angela, Elfie, Annicle, Chloe, Angela W

Year 4 – Charvi, Kathleen

Year 5- Jasmine, Cathy, Grace, Christelle, Asha, Hannah, Tiffany, Minaaz

Year 6 – Poppy, Aekam, Emma, Charlotte L, Alex, Lexi S, Scarlett, Chanel, Lexi B, Charlotte C

Emma Hinchliffe
Deputy Head of Junior School

Interrelate Parent Information Session

On Tuesday evening, Years 4 – 6 parents were invited to attend an information session about our upcoming Health and Development program which will be delivered by Interrelate presenters alongside student’s classroom teachers in Term 4. Glenys, the presenter gave families an overview of the information that will be presented to students and the types of activities that students will participate in throughout their 3 workshops next term. The session gave parents the confidence to begin and sustain important conversations about health, development and sexuality.

Further details about this program will be communicated with families next week. Please contact me if you have any questions.

Emma Hinchliffe
Deputy Head of Junior School

Connected Community


Connected Community

September 3, 2021

The Father’s Day Challenge is this Weekend!!

The PFA and CGGS Dads Group are excited to bring the Father’s Challenge to the CGGS Community this weekend. All fathers and father-figures should be recognised for the champions they are, so we will be holding the Father’s Day Challenge again this year.

In the Challenge, Fathers/father-figures and daughters can challenge each other in a friendly activity, game or sport this Father’s Day.

You may like to try a basketball or soccer goal shooting competition, a cooking challenge, a dance off or hula hoop challenge…anything is possible.

Participants will be asked to upload results and photos of their challenge with their  daughter/children to either the Junior School Padlet or Senior School Yammer Page.

Results will be tallied, and a Junior and Senior Challenge Cup winner will be awarded to either The Fathers or The Daughters.

This is a wonderful way to interact and spend time with your children this Father’s Day.

Good luck!!

View these images from last year’s Father’s Day Challenge for inspiration and ideas for your challenge.




August 20, 2021

The Importance of Self Care

Last week the annual Anglican Schools Conference was held virtually for the first time. With over 200 delegates from across Australia and internationally, the Melbourne Conference Committee created a program around the theme of ‘Intersection’ exploring the intersection of faith and learning. Reverend Helen Creed and I were very honoured to be a part of the organising committee, where our keynote presenters included Major Brendan Nottle from the Salvation Army, Brooke Prentis from Common Grace, Scott Holmes from the Diocese of Melbourne’s Preventing Violence Against Women Program and Ambassador Jamie Isbister, Australia’s Ambassador for the Environment. We explored what it means to be an Anglican School and how we can put our Anglican identity into action.

During the conference one of the speakers was talking about the shaping of culture in our schools, and how this work begins with the adults in the organisation, then flowing onto students. To illustrate this, she showed a picture similar to the one below of an adult putting their oxygen mask on in a plane before assisting the child with theirs. In planes we are reminded during the safety check that we need to care for ourselves, so that we don’t limit our ability to care for others.

I later thought about this analogy and the impact of this lockdown on us all. Many of us feel tired, frustrated and a little worn down, but know that we need to persist in doing what is required to move forward. We are also seeing the impact on our children as they are separated from friends and miss their normal routines and involvements.

How our children manage in times of difficulty can often be influenced by the adults around them. We know that our children often watch us to try and gain some insights that will help them make sense of what is happening and how to respond. As adults and role models, we need to remind ourselves of the importance of our own self-care first to ensure that our children see our strength and calmness in managing difficult situations. This will also help our children to feel less anxious.

I realise that this can be difficult – I am also taking heed of my own words! At a time when many of us are working in roles to support others, we must also prioritise our own self-care, and the way that we do this is unique to each individual. Self-care enhances our own wellbeing and assists our children to feel calmer when times are challenging.

As we navigate our way through this latest lockdown, remember you need to put on your own oxygen mask first to effectively help others. We can do it!

With best wishes,

Debbie Dunwoody

Senior School


Senior School

August 20, 2021

Last week in the Senior School assembly we were fortunate to hear remotely from 6 very talented public speakers as they presented their speeches on the topics of ‘Real worth is never measured in money or possessions’ for the Juniors, and ‘To experience adventure is to learn’ for the Intermediates in the finals of the Old Grammarians Association (OGA) Public Speaking Competition.

The OGA Public Speaking Competition is a recent addition to our intra-school events having been initiated by past student and Debating Captain 2018, Janice Soo. Janice wrote a proposal to the OGA committee seeking their support of the competition with the aim of encouraging students to find their voice, have their say and speak out on issues of interest and importance to them.

Ella Zhang (Year 8) Abigail Lee (Year 8) and Aliyana Rajakulendran (Year 8) competed in the Junior Division and Samantha Fan (Year 9), Sara Rowland (Year 9) and Salome Obeyesekere (Year 10) competed in the Intermediate Division.  School Debating and Literary Captain Emma Zhi (Year 12) hosted the event, while OGA committee members Samara Jones (2012) and Grace Tennant (2012) adjudicated the competition. Our Senior debaters participated earlier in the month and final results for all divisions will be shared and celebrated soon.

Week 6 of Term 3 ensured we all enjoyed another of our special weeks in Senior School – Science Week. Bethany Orme (Year 11) and Aleen Liu (Year 12) our STEAM Captains and keen scientists have worked very hard alongside Acting Head of Science, Mrs Di Wood and all the Science Department teachers including Ms Penny Dumsday who curated the Science Week Padlet to ensure our students have had a myriad of activities to explore the theme of Food: Different by Design.

Bethany and Aleen stated in their initial email on Monday morning introducing Science Week, and explained that the week of activities have be designed to take a close look at some of the food challenges facing the Earth. They spoke about how scientists are trying, through worldwide collaboration, to come up with sustainable food solutions, and that scientists are re-designing the food system to be healthy, sustainable, and more resilient to climate change, which helps to meet both the Sustainable Development Goals and the Paris Agreement to substantially reduce global greenhouse gas emissions to limit a global temperature increase.

Each day this week Bethany, Aleen and the Science Department have shared videos, reading, YouTube clips, riddles, activities, interviews and more on the theme of food. I take this opportunity on behalf of us all, students, parents and staff of the CGGS Senior School community alike to thank them for making Science Week 2021 informative, thought provoking and hopefully life changing for us all.

On a completely different tact, the young people in our lives are so adept at the use of social media. Although there are definitely occasions when we as parents and adults may wish they were more engaged with us and their studies and not the use of a device, at times like these there are some positives to be gained from aspects of this form of connection. I am and will remain more of an observer rather than a poster on Instagram and other forms of social media and it is the school accounts that provide me with much joy each day.

Our school Marketing Department curate the @camberwellgirls Instagram and Facebook accounts and lately I’ve been enjoying the posts. The @wearecggs Instagram account (run by our 3 School Captains) has also been posting their Podcast episodes which I have also enjoyed. I encourage all our parents to connect with the CGGS social media accounts.

Over the past months we have seen examples of young women showing up every day in a situation that challenges many of us as the adults in their lives. Year 12 students starting the day with meditation and exercise, groups of students challenging their learning in small study groups, acts of kindness from one student to another in the form of contactless deliveries to classmates nearby.  We have seen good choices made by taking care with how the students look after themselves, their teachers and each other. We have been privileged to see the goodness, the resilience and the amazing spirit of the students in our care.

I never cease to be amazed by our students and their teachers and am so proud to be a member of the CGGS community.

At this time, our school values of Integrity, Respect, Commitment, Hope and Courage and our school motto, Utilius in Ministerium, Useful in Service, help provide such guidance and purpose to us all. One other quality that is vital to our community now and always and we speak of this often – kindness. I urge all our families to make kindness to others, each other and ourselves our mantra during this lockdown.

Thank you to all the parents and students who have shared their kindness over the weeks of remote learning, by writing emails of thanks and sending gifts to their teachers at this extraordinary time. It is heart-warming to know our staff superhuman efforts are valued.

Thank you to you our parents for your support.

Cathy Poyser
Deputy Principal / Head of Senior School

Student Wellbeing in Remote Learning

There is no denying that the COVID-19 lockdowns, and the subsequent unrest has seen mental health and wellbeing fluctuate for all Australians, including that of our young people. With that in mind, the wellbeing of our students continues to be a priority and we have been very purposeful in the plans we have made to ensure that all students feel safe, supported and connected. Wellbeing activities occur throughout the day in many different forms, supported by our teachers and student leaders, and we are grateful for the opportunity that these provide our students to engage and maintain a sense of belonging. Below are some of the activities that have been facilitated over the past few weeks while in remote learning:

> Regular wellbeing check ins, in small groups and one-to-one meetings

> CamberWELL Week

> Pause for Prayer

> CGGS Sports Kahootz

> House Debating competitions

> OGA Public Speaking Awards

> Soul Siblings with our Year 7 and 9 students

> Leadership panels with our Year 12 Leaders and Year 10 students

> Wellbeing activities through the CGGS wellbeing website

> Year Level Challenges including, the Period 5 Adventures, Gratitude Photo Initiatives, Finish the Pun, Guess the Logo, Guess the Theme Song

> Ready, Steady, Cook lead by our School Captains

> House Bake off challenge

> After school Pilates and mindfulness sessions

> Fun Hat Friday

> International Club and Pride Group activities

These sessions are an essential component and extension of our purposefully designed wellbeing approach, reimagined for the online environment. As we continue to navigate the challenges of lockdown, students will participate in many more staff and student driven initiatives that focus on easing worry, maintaining routines, motivation, mindfulness, self-care, relationship and community building.

Click above to view some of these great initiatives.

Kath Woolcock
Deputy Head of Senior School – Student Wellbeing

National Science Week 

Thanks to the support of so many, CGGS has had a great Science Week. While we celebrated remotely this year, students used the Padlet provided by the STEAM Captains Aleen Liu and Bethany Orme and Science Staff extensively and participated in Zoom sessions to complete some of the activities. The Kahoots, Science Week riddle and practical activities were appreciated the most, but also many enjoyed Tuesday’s Science Assembly and an interview with two Old Grammarians, Caroline Rowland (2001) and Margaret Alousis (1994), who have successful engineering careers.

The STEAM Captains and Science staff posed some serious questions and challenges facing the world during this week but also provided some solutions and hope. As with the scientific collaborative associated with the development of the COVID vaccines, surely we can work together for a brighter future.  A future which will depend on the ingenuity and contribution of young people just like those who have, are and will attend CGGS.

Di Wood
Acting Head of Science 

Year 11 French Postcards

Recently in Year 11 French, as part of the VCE topic of French-speaking communities, students wrote postcards. They were asked to imagine that they had just spent their first week on exchange in a French-speaking region of the world and had to write a postcard telling me how they were. In VCE French, text type is important, and we practise them all: emails, letters, speeches, articles, short stories, and postcards, to name a few. I thought it might be fun for the students (especially in lockdown!) to create a digital postcard so that we had the visuals and format of the postcard, and we could all fly away in our imaginations. The students produced some excellent examples conveying events, thoughts and feelings and using a wide range of sophisticated language, which is no small feat in the smaller format of a postcard.

Izy’s postcard is from Switzerland, and she uses the subjunctive to tell me that it is the most beautiful place that she knows. She mentions that she is living in an area known for skiing and that although she isn’t great at skiing, her friends are helping her.

Annaliese’s postcard from Seychelles is written from a white sandy beach where she is surrounded by coconut palms and the clear sky is perfect for clearing her mind. She says the locals are welcoming and that the atmosphere is so relaxing that she has a permanent smile. She spends most of the day at the beach although is going to hike in the mountains that afternoon.

Lauren is in Belgium and enjoying the old architecture and all the chocolate shops, where she has bought chocolate every day. She is excited about the next day’s trip on a boat on the canal, although a bit worried about getting seasick.

Natasha is in Monaco, and she can hardly believe her eyes because she thinks Monaco is one of the most beautiful places in the world and she is enjoying the tourist attractions like the oceanographic museum and the Japanese gardens. It’s warm and sunny and her most memorable experience has been to see the palace and hearing Grace Kelly’s story.

Nancy is in Annecy, an alpine town in the southeast of France. She mentions the paved streets and pastel houses. But she loves the canals the most and was amazed at the medieval village and the turquoise water beneath her. She also got lost in the fragrance of fresh croissants and she tells me that she is practising her French with kind shopkeepers.

Joanne Rittey
Head of LOTE

CGGS German students excel at AGTV Poetry Competition

Students learning German have the opportunity to take part the annual poetry competition run through the regional networks of the Association of German Teachers (AGTV).  This competition begins in the classrooms of Years 7-9, where every student must learn and recite a German poem. Through reciting a poem, students become aware of cross-linguistic differences and whilst listening to and rehearsing poems, students adopt the sounds and rhythms of a new language and memorise these passages without stress. Students can select their preferred poem from four prescribed poems for each year level. After presenting in class, three students from each year level are invited to proceed to the Regional Finals, where they compete against neighbouring school such as Scotch College, PLC and Trinity.

Our students worked very hard at perfecting their pronunciation and presentation skills to deliver their poems with the challenges that the virtual stage presents. This year, three CGGS students excelled in the competition. Christina Weickhardt received 5th place in the Year 7 section with an honourable mention, Elysia Wang received 3rd place and 1st place went to Atara Paul, both in the Year 8 section. Atara has been invited to present her poem, “Erlebnis,” in the State Finals later this term.

Congratulations to all the students for their participation in the competition.

Ingrid Beck
German Teacher

Health/PE ‘Choose Your Journey’ Activities

Remote learning has again thrown the Health and Physical Education (HPE) Department a challenge, as shifting their programs online is no easy feat. Racquet sports, Games for understanding, AFL and Handball do not transfer well to a Zoom environment, nor does teaching the current Health curriculum of Respectful Relationships and Sexuality Education.

The HPE staff have been purposeful in maintaining an online program throughout each remote learning period that provides a plethora of activities under the Mind-Body-Soul domains of Wellbeing. Students are provided with workouts, new skills to learn, teamwork activities, puzzles and brain games, a walk around Australia challenge and guided meditations or mindful photography. There was something for everyone in the ‘Choose your Journey’ plan last week with days such as Mindful Monday, Work out Wednesday and Tough it out Thursday. This week sees the introduction of Teamwork Tuesday and Flexible Friday.

At the completion of each lesson, students upload a short video or picture as evidence of active participation in the activity and we especially love when they complete with a group of friends. Here is a small snapshot of what’s been going on in PE lessons over the last fortnight.

A shout out to all the students who have engaged in our program and to the PE staff for their creativity and support.

Nareen Robinson
Head of Health & Physical Education

Year 8 Gratitude Scavenger Hunt

Being in lockdown brings different challenges for everyone, and with the busyness of the school day, it can be easy to get caught up with things on the to-do list and forget to take stock of the positives in our lives. In the past week, Year 8 students were sent on a Gratitude Scavenger Hunt around their homes and were asked to share via Padlet things that they were grateful for, using the prompts that were provided.

It was fantastic to see all the things that both students and staff were grateful for, not to mention all the lovely pet pictures that would put a smile on anyone’s faces.

Paige Tan
Year 8 Coordinator

House Debating Heats

The annual House Debating competition is underway, with the first round taking place over Zoom. Our school debaters participated in the first round on Friday 13 August. Despite the difficulties of remote learning, all participants and captains rose to the challenge.

The heats saw strong participation from all houses, with 9 rounds held over lunchtime and Period 5. This signified some of the keenest interest in House Debating seen in many years, testament to the hard work and leadership of the House Debating and Public Speaking Captains.

The topics were ‘Should animal live-export be banned’ for the Junior Division, ‘Should Australia implement the four-day work week’ for the Intermediate Division and ‘News organisations should not portray themselves as reporters of objective truth’ for the Senior Division. Every debater showcased complex thinking and flexibility – something we all thoroughly enjoyed witnessing!

Please find results of the heats attach below, with each of the highlighted teams progressing to the next round.

Emma Zhi and Nirvana Watkins
School Debating and Literary Captain / Head of English

CGGS Netball Community

This week we have seen the introduction of Net Skill week. Each day, fundamental netball skills are sent to your email with an attached recording to show you the correct technique for the skill. You can do these all in your own time, even if it for 10 minutes. I have also included Coaching tips on each recording, so by the time you get back on court, you will have mastered these skills.

We have had some guest appearances in these recordings by way of furry friends, Holly and Coco, at the local park here in Camberwell. I am confident that their footwork is great but I’m not so sure about their ability to pass the ball back in a timely manner.

Next week, we will introduce Net Skills Week 2, which will see us focus on footwork and agility. All of which you can do at home in a small space and in your own time. Players please remember, just because we are not together on the netball court we are still connected in our ‘want’ to play netball. Be mindful to practice Net skills when time allows and if you would like to share with me some of what you have been doing, I would love to see.

In the athlete population there is much discussion around wellbeing and relating this back to performance. Self-care tip this week:

Sleep Hygiene: Reducing screen time before bed, keeping a normal sleep routine, going to sleep and waking up at the same time each morning and always ensuring that you are getting enough quality sleep each night.

In netball we have a hashtag #hereifyouneed. I am sure that some of you have used this on the court at times. Thank you for your continued efforts.

Alexia McConnell
Netball Coordinator

Australian Geography Competition

The Australian Geography Competition is a challenging competition that assesses individuals on geographical knowledge and skills with an application to a broad range of topics and global events. This year, the Geography Department registered Year 7 and Unit 1/2 students to compete in class and invited all students from other years to compete during optional lunchtime sessions.

The awards for this year’s annual Competition will be presented in the upcoming Senior School Assembly on August 24. Well done to everyone who participated. All students who entered will receive a Participation certificate. All students will have the opportunity to enter the competition when it runs again next year.

Congratulations to all students involved. We are proud to recognise the exceptional achievements of a number of students this year, please find those involved below.

Karoline Walter
Head of Geography

Junior School


Junior School

August 20, 2021

Year 6C Student Leadership Positions for Semester 2

When our Foundation – Year 6 students return to Ormiston on Friday 3 September, our Year 6C students will be very keen to get started with their leadership positions for Semester Two.

As a school community, we would all like to congratulate the following students:

Art Leaders – Alex Kossaris & Sarah Luo

Assembly & Events Leaders – Gretel Blake, Poppy Tymmons & Ella Turnley

Digital Leaders – Sarah Lu & Maya Waide-Hee

House Leaders

Lawrence – Chanel Ghostine

Schofield – Charlotte Lim

Singleton – Scarlett Sim

Taylor – Alexia Stuart-Adams

Library Leaders – Jessie Lu & Claire Pham-Nguyen

Music Leader – Aathana Sivapalan

School Captains – Elise Orme & Allegra Reedman

Sustainability – Emma Liu & Vivienne Torre

Social Service Leaders – Hannah Lan & Ashanti Rajakulendran

Wellbeing Leaders – Aekam Gill & Nirvani Subedi

We look forward to presenting our official Semester Two Leadership Induction assembly for these Year 6C students. The plan is for this assembly to take place during the last week of Term 3, hopeful we are back onsite by then.

Remote Junior School Assembly

During remote learning, our weekly assembly has changed to a Wednesday at 12.30pm, just before lunchtime. The focus of this week’s assembly was Science Week, and I was able to share some wonderful science facts about the Earth and Space. I would like to thank Penny Dumsday, our Junior School STEAM Teacher for all her work in planning and preparing a wide range of optional Science activities for students to complete across all our Foundation – Year 6 year levels. These activities also included some optional Zoom meetings for students to be involved with some very engaging science experiments.

This week, Annabelle Teh of Year 3 read out the prayer for us. There is so much we can appreciate and look forward to in the future. Here is the prayer:

Dear God

We thank you for your help during remote learning and for giving us the strength and determination to through this challenging time away from School.

Thank you for giving us the confidence to always do our Personal Best and to appreciate the Science around us. We thank Mrs Dumsday for organising Science Week activities for us to complete at home, as we learn so much more about our beautiful planet.

Teach us to look forward to the good times in the future and to remind us to keep in  touch with our friends and family members who we cannot see in person at the moment.

We hope to return to School very soon.

In Jesus name,



I wish all our Ormiston families a safe and restful weekend.

Yours sincerely,

Paul Donohue
Head of Junior School

Remote Learning Highlights

Throughout remote learning our teachers have been encouraging students to continue to focus on taking their time and producing high quality work. It has made us really proud to see most students have really taken this on board and used the time learning from home to show their creativity in different ways. Some highlights of student’s remote learning have been:

Year 6 Writing
As part of their inquiry unit exploring immigration, Year 6 students have been completing a collaborative, in depth text study of The Arrival by Shaun Tan. This week, students have worked with focus during their Zoom meetings and independent learning time to produce highly descriptive letters that detail the experiences, perspectives and emotions of the protagonist pictured in the text. Students should be congratulated on the fabulous way they approached these lessons. They brainstormed figurative language together, listened and responded to individual feedback on their writing and continued to edit, revise and refine their writing, focusing specifically on the five senses, figurative language and purposeful and ambitious vocabulary throughout.

Year 2 Learning Adventures
To support the development of students curiosity and transferrable skills such as creativity and communication at home, our Year 2 students have been working on completing their own learning adventures. Students have been excited to spend time at home learning new skills including how to create stop motion animations, cook, perform magic tricks and even juggle.

Science Week
This week, we have been celebrating Science Week! Our fabulous Science Department, including our Junior School STEAM teacher, Ms Dumsday, put together a range of engaging online activities for our students to choose to explore to foster curiosity, experimentation and a love of Science. Students really enjoyed making ice-cream in a bag, creating their own compost and challenging their knowledge by completing the expert level Kahoot quizzes. I encourage you to view the Padlet of engaging Science activities that students have completed here.

Year 4-6 Music Performances
As part of their classroom music program, Year 4-6 students were given the opportunity to practise their instrumental performance presentation skills. Students were encouraged to share their instruments and special talent for music for the enjoyment of others. It was fantastic to see so many students take up this opportunity and share performances on the cello, recorder, violin, trumpet and piano.

Ormiston Olympic Spirit Award Winners

It has been incredible to see the sustained commitment and courage shown by our students during remote learning. Remote learning is requiring a real-life application of grit and growth-mindset for the whole school community and I am incredibly proud of all of our students for persevering through this challenge.

Each week I am lucky to read some fantastic nomination statements from both our classroom and specialist teachers about why they have chosen to nominate students for an award. Over the past fortnight it has made me smile reading that our students have been described as: committed, respectful, full of initiative, hardworking and displaying kindness, determination and generosity of spirit.

Congratulations to the following students for being awarded a digital badge over the past fortnight:

Foundation: Qianqian, Evia

Year 1: Sofia, Doris, Aurora, Aryana, Nicole, Evie, Cathy, Alice,

Year 2: Aanya, Audrey, Annabelle, Faye, Emma, Akira,

Year 3: Angelina, Elfie, Angela, Annicle, Amelia, Laila, Chloe, Ivy 

Year 4: Aratrika, Amelia, Amiya, Georgia, Sophie May, Ruth, Sienna, Ellie, Shreya, Selinna 

Year 5: Zihan, Maddison, Eden, Jessica, Celeste, Alisha, Karina, Mo Lin, Amy Q, Genevieve, Nina, Christine, Nicole, Sophie, Rudra, Stefanie, Nellie, Rita, Cathy, 

Year 6: Charlotte L,  Charlotte C, Sarah Luo, Hannah, Alex, Alexia, Chanel, Poppy, Emma, Gretel, Aaliyah, Natalie, Charlie, Natasha O, Natasha C, Ashanti, Allegra, Aekam, Alina, Angel, Sarah Lu, Preesha

Emma Hinchliffe
Deputy Head of Junior School

Connected Community


Connected Community

August 20, 2021

Old Grammarians join Science Week

This week was National Science Week, and the students were very fortunate to have two old grammarians, both Engineers, join the Senior School Assembly to answer their questions.

Margaret Alousis (1994) and Caroline Rowland (2001), zoomed in to speak all things Engineering.

One of the first questions asked of Margaret and Caroline was the subjects studied at school to advance to Engineering. Both Margaret and Caroline said that subjects in the sciences and maths fields are important, but Caroline also said that her CGGS music teacher’s advice was to do subjects that you are interested in so that you enjoy studying.

Margaret went on to say that an Engineering degree is versatile, and the skills learned can be applied to a wide variety of jobs, careers and positions and the scope is limitless.

Engineering is a combination between science and maths and being creative. Problem solving is at the core of Engineering and Engineers look to designing, building, creating and inventing to reach these solutions.

Caroline started her career as a technical engineer and now Engineering has taken her to a field in business development, marketing and strategy.

We thank both Margaret and Caroline, (with newborn baby in arms) for their time and sharing their knowledge with the science class.

Cure Lockdown Fatigue

Just as we were dusting ourselves off and tentatively venturing out into the world again, we were thrust back into the uncertainty of lockdown. While we try to remain optimistic, it is equally understandable to feel despondent and bored.

While the Parents and Friends Association is currently limited in ways to engage the school community, we hope the following suggested unique lockdown activities engage your curiosity and alleviate lockdown fatigue and boredom.

Camp Out
You may not be able to travel further than your backyard, so why not recreate the camping experience in your backyard or balcony? Pitch a tent, tell ghost stories, toast marshmallows. The good news is pets are welcome and you can go inside if it starts raining.

Melbourne International Film Festival from your couch
The Melbourne International Film Festival brings you a selection of global cinema’s most scintillating films – available to view right from your couch.

Join Museum Victoria for their Virtual National Science Week Program
This year, Museums Victoria is bringing you a program packed with STEM and science research through online events, social media takeovers and challenges, in-depth stories and the chance to vote for Victoria’s State Fossil Emblem.

From now until August 22, you can tune in to one of the online events and learn from museum scientists and experts.

Take a Virtual Trip to the Phillip Island Penguin Parade
At sunset every night, the world’s largest colony of Little Penguins waddle up Phillip Island’s floodlit beaches to their homes. As visitors are unable to enjoy this natural phenomenon in person at the moment, the penguins will be brought to you right in your home.

Set up a treasure hunt
Treasure hunts are pretty easy, and depending on how many items there are, could last a while. Hide 10 to 20 items around the house or outside to keep kids occupied for a few hours. To make it more fun, draw a treasure map, and place messages with clues around each item to help find the next item.

Bring Melbourne Zoo’s animals into your home
Bring the zoo to life from the three Melbourne Zoo locations with live cams, keeper talks and other virtual updates.

Order at home meal kits from top Melbourne restaurants
Bring the experience of a restaurant home and cook with the family with these heat-and-eat meals that make dinner easy and fun.

Listen to amazing Podcasts
Lockdown can get a little tiring, so keep your mind sharp with this list of must-listen podcasts.

Paint and Sip – relaxing at home online activity
Find a well-lit space in your home to set up your painting station, gather some painting materials, enjoy your favourite beverage and discover your creative side.

Make your own Bubble Tea with DIY Kits
Grabbing a bubble tea might not feel like an essential reason to leave your house, but fear not, the team at Naröcha have got you covered. The CBD-based tea room is now selling DIY bubble tea packages fo you to concoct and sip at home.




August 6, 2021

Focussing on Wellbeing

In my video editorial earlier this term, I talked about the skills and mindsets that our students have developed throughout this pandemic that are demonstrated through their ability to think creatively, manage change, persevere and in events like House Music, demonstrate a flexible mindset to achieve their goals.

Rapid changes into lockdown, such as the one that we are currently experiencing, can be very unsettling for our children and ourselves. One way to provide some stability or reassurance is to continue with, or re-consider the things that brought happiness, joy and a sense of wellbeing to our family lives last year. Many people proudly shared experiences such as:

> playing games together, both inside and outside (if possible)

> doing activities together such as cooking or meal preparation

> exercising together

> sharing experiences where you are intentionally noticing things around you, for examples, the texture of trees or beauty of flowers in your yard

> sharing music together, and

> finding ways to show gratitude.

Valuable time with family members is protective for our children. It provides opportunities to talk about things that interest, entertain and even worry us. We communicate and support each other, and through moments of joy we feel more connected and energised.

However, at times of heightened anxiety, such as during a lockdown, it is very common to retreat into our devices (adults as well as children), focussing our attention away from each other and often disregarding our need to disconnect from technology for our own wellbeing. As family time can provide moments of joy to connect and energise us, it needs to be prioritised and planned.

Young people’s dependency on devices to be connected not only in classes and activities, but also with friends online is significant. For many, the reduction of other opportunities during lockdowns also accentuates this time spent on devices. It is important to monitor your child’s use of technology as it is possible that they are accessing a much wider range of sites, and some may not be age appropriate. Typical signs that they need a break from their devices include a determination to be on them, changes in mood, a lack of sleep or disturbed sleep.

Being present and sharing enjoyable family experiences during lockdown is not only prioritising our children’s wellbeing, but our own as well.

Please reach out to any of us if you need assistance during this time.

With best wishes,

Debbie Dunwoody

Senior School


Senior School

August 6, 2021

This evening a small student audience should have been able to watch the efforts of our keen drama students in Years 10 – 12 who have been rehearsing diligently in face masks for the past term for “The Caucasian Chalk Circle” our 2021, Senior School Production.

Sadly, the snap lockdown last night and the current Victorian Government School Operations guidelines mean that the Senior School production cannot be performed in front of an audience, nor may the cast perform without the wearing of masks.  Yesterday Ms Keira Lyons, Head of Drama and Performing Arts, and her team of Ms Sally Oliver and Mrs Claire Colthup, the Production Director and I met again with the cast of the Senior School Production to discuss the likelihood of the production being performed with face masks after the lockdown ends. It is still our hope that we find a way of  preserving, honouring and sharing this production with our community. I take this opportunity to thank and acknowledge all our ‘Caucasian Chalk Circle’ performers and their mentor teachers for their resilience.

This week we have celebrated CamberWELL Week, one of the special weeks in our Senior School calendar each year. This year the School Wellbeing Captain, Annaliese Cossenas and our Student Representative Council Chairs, Chelsea Ellingworth and Catherine Hu, have worked alongside Deputy Head of Senior School – Student Wellbeing, Ms Kath Woolcock to ensure each day of the week has provided our community with an activity and motivational message.

Students and staff enjoyed participating in ‘Motivation Monday,’ ‘Thoughtful Tuesday,’ ‘Wellbeing Wednesday,’ ‘Thursday Treats’ and ‘Feel Good Friday.’ Last night an email was shared with the entire Senior School community, by our Captains suggesting we all “wear a piece of clothing that makes you feel especially good”! On Tuesday in our assembly, the Captains interviewed a panel of staff and students including Priyanshi Shah Year 11, Romy Mead Year 9, Mr Micah Wilkins, Ms Shipsides and Mr Pasinati on questions such as how they include wellbeing in their daily practice. Ms Shipsides made mention of the Science of Wellbeing course that she is guiding a number of our Year 12 students through this year and how this free on-line course has assisted the group. On behalf of the Senior School, I thank the team for providing us all with these up-lifting opportunities. Please read the article written by these Captains later in this edition of CamNews.

Warm regards,

Cathy Poyser
Deputy Principal / Head of Senior School

Great Success at German Poetry Competition

Sasha Feldmann (Year 10), recently competed in the Goethe Poetry Recital Competition, held by the University of Melbourne. The competition is open to native and non-native speakers from Year 10 to 12 and students must study, learn, and recite a poem by German writers such as Bertolt Brecht, Wilhelm Busch, Heinrich Heine and Sarah Kirsch.

Sasha decided to recite the poem “König David” (Kind David), written in 1797 by Heine. The challenging poem consists of 5 stanzas, 20 lines in total. Sasha won a very worthy second place in the competition, demonstrating a very high standard of German skills. She is congratulated by the CGGS community for her great effort.

While we do not have an English translation available to share, we are pleased to share the poem in its original form for those in our community who may themselves be able to speak German.

Congratulations Sasha.

Ingrid Beck
German Teacher

UN Model Conference for German

On 15 July, three VCE students, Charlotte Kutey, and ourselves, Olivia Jones and Amy Du, participated in the U.N. Model Conference for German. Alongside other VCE German students, we discussed the U.N. Sustainable Development Goal No. 14 – ‘Life below water’ via Zoom.  In this report, we shared our experience of the day and how this opportunity has benefitted their language learning.

The event was not only an opportunity for us to collaborate and discuss global issues with other German students, but it was also an event run almost entirely in German. As such, we spent the day speaking, debating, and discussing contemporary global issues in German, and were fortunate enough to do so alongside other schools.

Prior to the day, we spent weeks researching Russia’s policies and attitudes concerning ocean protection, marine ecosystems, the blue economy, food security, indigenous fishing practices, and overfishing. Using our research, we drafted a position statement, amendments, and strategy, for the upcoming event. Familiarising ourselves with the vocabulary and jargon related to diplomacy, climate change, and UN procedures was challenging, but set good foundations for the upcoming model conference.

Due to COVID-19 restrictions, we participated in the conference over Zoom. Our task was to propose amendments to the Draft Resolution in accordance with Russian climate and ocean policies and persuade other countries to support our proposals. Actively listening, speaking, and responding in German for the duration of the U.N. Model Conference was a strenuous, but immersive experience. As Russia, we represented a powerful and controversial state, and were subject to many interrogations that necessitated improvisation on our part. It was nerve-racking to discuss a complex topic in a second language, especially with clarity and diplomacy at the forefront of our minds.

The experience was ultimately incredibly rewarding, and we would encourage other students to seek out similar U.N. style events – regardless of the language they’re in!

Olivia Jones and Amy Du
Year 11 and Year 12

CamberWELL Week Edition: Year 9 Lockdown Padlet

Year 9 students were inspired by the Year 7 initiative featured in the previous edition of CamNews and decided to collate a bank of ideas to motivate them during the recent Lockdown. Using Padlet as a shared space to communicate, students and staff from each Form group were encouraged to add recommendations and describe the ways they’ve passed the time.

See below for some examples of the wonderful staff and student entries:

Creating daily rituals
Ritual is so important for human society, for centuries we have incorporated rituals into many aspects of our communal life. Something that I have noticed over the past year is that we haven’t been able to come together maybe as often and celebrate important rituals. So why not create little ones for yourself? I love hand grinding my coffee and drinking it from this mug I made myself – because as someone once told me; eating and drinking from handmade plates is such a special experience. I always try to find some time to read out-loud to my plants. I know it’s silly, but I think they love it!

Scavenger Hunt
Sometimes having a goal can make getting outdoors a little easier. Our family designed a scavenger hunt for our bike ride… and included an ice cream for the end!!

30 Day Drawing Challenge & ‘This Foreign Place’ Drawing Challenge
If you love drawing and have art block, give yourself a challenge by using a prompt each day to create a masterpiece! if you search up “30-day drawing challenge” there are many to choose from! My personal favourite right now is the 30-day drawing challenge: Marvel edition! 🙂

Draw a room in your house as if you’re visiting it for the first time as a foreigner- title it “This Foreign Place” and include annotations!

Georgia Biggs
Year 9 Coordinator

Senior School Production – The Caucasian Chalk Circle

We thank all students who have been involved in the rehearsals and preparing for our upcoming performance. The perseverance, attitude, and diligence of students adapting to the ever changing landscape of what their performance may look like, should be commended. Please see a list below of all students involved.

We look forward to being able to share more of the hard work of these students in a future edition.

Claire Colthup
Production Director

CamberWELL Week

CGGS’s CamberWELL Week is a highlight for students and staff, as we come together to acknowledge, learn, embrace and engage in a range of activities and initiatives designed to enhance and promote individual and community wellbeing. There are many wonderful students and staff that contributed to our CamberWELL Week, we would like to thank our School Wellbeing Captain Annaliese Cossenas, and our Student Representative Council Chairs, Chelsea Ellingworth and Catherine Hu.

Please see a reflection below from these students.

Kath Woolcock
Deputy Head of Senior School – Student Wellbeing

CamberWELL Week – A reflection

This week, our Senior School was so excited to celebrate our annual CamberWELL Week, a collaborative event coordinated by the Student Wellbeing Team and SRC. The purpose of the week was to not only promote an overall awareness of the wide-ranging aspects of wellbeing, including social, physical, emotional and community facets, but also to inspire our community to explore and discover what wellbeing means to them personally. We have, now more than ever, come to recognise the vital importance of these skills and activities to maintain our wellbeing in these unique circumstances.

Each day had a specific focus: Motivation Monday, Thoughtful Tuesday, Wellbeing Wednesday, Together Thursday and Feel-Good Friday. As part of this too, the Senior School Library provided all students who borrowed a book across the week with an inspirational bookmark to promote the joy of reading.

The week started off with a bang! Year 11 and 12 students participated in a competitive (yet friendly) match of Volleyball against their teachers to get their hearts pumping and ready for the rest of the week. Additionally, students viewed a motivational TED Talk that discussed the mentality around what drives us, as well as some humorous but useful advice about how to overcome procrastination.

Then came Thoughtful Tuesday, when students were privileged to hear from a very special guest speaker from Headspace, Kano. He shared his story and wisdom, as well as some short but reflective activities related to gratitude and self-introspection.

During the special Wellbeing themed assembly, a panel of Teachers and Students shared their own perspectives and experiences of managing their wellbeing and how this has changed over time. Key ideas emerged around self-care, gratitude, perspective and the important role that nature plays in bringing a sense of purpose and balance. A very special thank you to Mr Wilkins, Mrs Shipsides, Mr Pasinati, Priyanshi Shah (Year 11) and Romy Mead (Year 9) for their valuable insights.

Wellbeing Wednesday provided students with a range of effective activities to unwind and de-stress, including a colour- by- numbers, podcast and a mindfulness program.

Thursday Together inspired our students to do some random acts of kindness by providing them with some things that they can do for their friends, teachers and other members of the CGGS community. Examples included paying it forward at Pinwheel, sharing a highlight of class with the teacher and letting someone know you are grateful for them. As part of this, the Year 9 Little Library was launched, an initiative designed to provide a dedicated wellbeing space in Lower Woodstock. The space is a pop-up library which includes books linked to wellbeing that cater specifically to the Year 9 students.

On Friday, the plans shifted slightly as we entered lockdown.  our staff and students were surprised with some inspiring and adorable motivational sticky notes. On Thursday afternoon, while staff and students were heading home, the CamberWELL week student team were busy leaving little notes of inspiration on all student lockers and staff pigeon holes. While this was originally part of the plans for ‘Feel Good Friday’, it will be a lovely welcome back when we our community returns to school later next week. Remote Feel Good Friday also encouraged staff and students to wear something to class that brings them joy, such as some fun earrings, a favourite hoody, a scarf or something bright and colourful! During Period 5 students were provided with some activities to do that focussed on their own wellbeing, and it was a very fitting way to end a successful and busy week.

Catherine Hu, Chelsea Ellingworth and Annaliese Cossenas
Year 12 Students