- Pastoral Care
Matthew F. Maruff- Headmaster
Educating for Career Choice With 75 per cent of the fastest growing occupations requiring Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths, it is little wonder that “STEM” is the latest buzz-word in education. Girton Grammar is exceptionally well placed to teach these subjects, with three teachers recently being invited to give an address at a major STEM conference to be held in Melbourne, later in the year. The conference will involve a number of addresses from leading experts all over Australia, as well as workshops and plenary sessions. The aim is to develop STEM educators, inspire students into future STEM careers and encourage girls, in particular, to take up STEM. Read about the Girton Grammar teachers who will feature at this event: Dr Emma O’Rielly, BSc (Hons), PhD, DipEd By the age of 25 Emma O’Rielly had completed a Science degree with Honours, discovered 7 new species of bacteria and completed a PhD. She is an accomplished research scientist who has been successful in industry and yet, developing the next generation of scientific leaders is what inspires her the most. It was whilst completing her Doctor of Philosophy in Molecular Microbiology at La Trobe University that she became involved in teaching undergraduate students in both practical classes and tutorials. ...
A group of 21 Girton Grammar netball players will travel to Singapore and Malaysia on a 10 day netball tour, playing a series of games against local schools. Acting Head of Girton Grammar School, Mrs Robyn MacCulloch, said that Girton will field three netball teams for the Asian tour with students ranging from Year 7 to ...
The Forever Young Rock Choir was today rehearsing for their annual concert, which will feature popular rocker from the sixties, Normie Rowe, at the Ulumbarra Theatre on Wednesday 16th September. A full rehearsal with the Girton Grammar String Orchestra and Rock Band took place, featuring an all-Australian repertoire of songs including Beds are Burning, Down Under, ...
Year 12 Girton Grammar student Bevan Madden, today received an ATAR score that will allow him to study Science, which has been his dream for as long as he can ...
Girton Grammar student, Jessica Farrar, has achieved an ATAR score ranking her in the top 9% of the State, having already received a scholarship for departing students for her outstanding ...
Year 12 Girton Grammar student, Stephanie Dolman, has thanked her teachers for getting her through VCE and helping her to achieve an ATAR score that will likely get her into ...
In a bid to get students to study science through to Year 12, especially Physics, a program called Growing (Junior) Tall Poppies in Science (www.coecxs.org), has been developed to allow ...
With 75 per cent of the fastest growing occupations requiring Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths, it is little wonder that “STEM” is the latest buzz-word in education.
Girton Grammar is exceptionally well placed to teach these subjects, with three teachers recently being invited to give an address at a major STEM conference to be held in Melbourne, later in the year.
The conference will involve a number of addresses from leading experts all over Australia, as well as workshops and plenary sessions. The aim is to develop STEM educators, inspire students into future STEM careers and encourage girls, in particular, to take up STEM.
By the age of 25 Emma O’Rielly had completed a Science degree with Honours, discovered 7 new species of bacteria and completed a PhD. She is an accomplished research scientist who has been successful in industry and yet, developing the next generation of scientific leaders is what inspires her the most.
It was whilst completing her Doctor of Philosophy in Molecular Microbiology at La Trobe University that she became involved in teaching undergraduate students in both practical classes and tutorials. A separate stint of supervising Honours and PhD candidates was enough to confirm in her mind that teaching would be her future.
Emma now teaches VCE biology at Girton Grammar School in Bendigo and is the Senior Years Curriculum Leader. She is passionate about teaching students to think scientifically and also has a keen interest and involvement in the professional learning of staff within the school.
Despite her lofty achievements and aspirations for the field of Science in this country, nothing validates Emma’s work more, than when the face of a student lights up from understanding something for the first time.
Jane Reaburn lives and breathes science and maths, both in the classroom and well beyond. As a recipient of a prestigious 2015 Teacher Tall Poppies Award, her skills in teaching Science, Maths Information Technology and Biology are widely recognised by her peers and her students.
Jane’s great passion is instilling a sense of wonder and passion about the world and the universe in every one of her students. She is currently the Head of Science at Girton Grammar School in Bendigo and Head of the Science and Engineering Co-curricular. In these roles she has implemented a range of exciting out-of-classroom experiences for students and led the way for other teachers in the use of technology in the classroom.
Jane has mentored many students with great success including two students who will represent Australia this year at the International Science Olympiad and in 2013 she won an Australian Academy of Science “Wow Science Award”.
Jane has organised and led students on 3 Science and Engineering trips to the USA with 2 more trips in the pipeline. Her students love the website that she has set up which includes practice questions, videos, summaries, podcasts and revision worksheets. Lifelong learning is her mantra and her students are well and truly on the journey.
The cross-over of knowledge that occurs when students study both Physics and Engineering is poetic for Rod Smith, who, after a successful career as an Engineer, discovered a passion for teaching.
After teaching Electronics, Engineering and Electrical apprentices at TAFE for nearly ten years, Rod decided to try his hand at Secondary School education and now teaches Systems Engineering and Physics at Girton Grammar School in Bendigo. He is also involved in the School’s Science Co-curriculum and mentors students competing in all manner of Science based competitions, with one of his students recently earning the privilege of displaying a robotic hand – planned, tested, built and project managed over a six month period – at the Melbourne Museum.
Rod is passionate about giving students practical experience so that they can test the limits of what they have learned. He believes that the sometimes weighty theoretical concepts underpinning both Physics and Engineering need to be debunked outside the classroom for students to genuinely understand and enjoy the subjects as much as he does.
Rod is preparing his students to face a world seemingly, in technological free-fall. A world where developing something like a microprocessor takes a fraction of the time it did only 10 years ago. Creating adaptive thinkers who can apply the theory in new ways is the key, he believes, to student success.
A group of 21 Girton Grammar netball players will travel to Singapore and Malaysia on a 10 day netball tour, playing a series of games against local schools.
Acting Head of Girton Grammar School, Mrs Robyn MacCulloch, said that Girton will field three netball teams for the Asian tour with students ranging from Year 7 to Year 12.
“This is a wonderful opportunity for our girls to put themselves to the test against some very fine netball teams.
“The games will be ‘friendlies’ but, knowing the caliber of netballers that both Singapore and Malaysia are turning out, the matches will be hotly contested.
“Our teams have been training hard and are looking forward to experiencing the sport that they love in another country,” Mrs MacCulloch said.
The three Girton Grammar netball teams will depart for Singapore during the School holidays on Monday 29th June and return on Thursday 9th July. They will play 2 games in Singapore and 3 games in Kuala Lumpur. Recent netball tours of this kind have taken place in New Zealand and Brisbane.
“Netball is a very popular sport at Girton, perhaps partly because one of the current national champions, Caitlyn Thwaites, is a past student and also because of the highly skilled coaches and fine facilities that we have.
“This overseas trip will provide a wonderful cultural and sporting exchange between netball-loving nations, as well as some well-earned recreation for staff and players,” Mrs MacCulloch said.
The Forever Young Rock Choir was today rehearsing for their annual concert, which will feature popular rocker from the sixties, Normie Rowe, at the Ulumbarra Theatre on Wednesday 16th September.
A full rehearsal with the Girton Grammar String Orchestra and Rock Band took place, featuring an all-Australian repertoire of songs including Beds are Burning, Down Under, Don’t Dream It’s Over, Solid Rock, My Happiness, To Love Somebody and Friday on My Mind.
Rehearsals with Normie Rowe will take place in September.
The theme for this year’s concert is “Play”, taken from the choir’s motto, “Live Love Laugh Play Shine”.
The ‘Forever Young’ choir was established in 2011 by Mrs Laura Dusseljee, Head of Girton Grammar Junior School Music Department. It is a community choir made up of approximately 80 senior citizens, the youngest being 64 and oldest 94. The choir sings rock songs of all genres. They are accompanied by the rock band “Standing Room Only” and the Senior String Orchestra from Girton Grammar Senior School.
Girton Grammar School’s tradition of excelling at Science has been furthered with one student being awarded a 2015 Junior Tall Poppies Award, a teacher being awarded the 2015 Teacher Tall Poppies Award and another two students being accepted to attend Youth ANZAAS, a conference organised by the Australian and New Zealand Association for the Advancement of Science, one of Australia’s oldest scientific associations.
Acting Head of Girton Grammar School, Mrs Robyn MacCulloch, said that the school has many students who go on to study Science at the tertiary level and that Science has always been a strong-point for the School.
“These are four outstanding science achievements and the School is very proud of both the staff and students involved.
“Alexander O’Shea (Year 10) is one of only 8 students in Victoria to be accepted into the Growing Junior Tall Poppies program and granted access to an eminent Scientist who will be connected to the School and will work with Alex to implement his personal scientific project.
“Alex will also attend a Science Leadership workshop in June and the Growing Tall Poppies in Science conference in December.
“Alexander Nielsen (Year 10) was awarded an Honourable Mention in the same Growing Junior Tall Poppies in Science awards.
“Both of these students have been taught by Mrs Jane Reaburn who has been awarded the 2015 Growing Teacher Tall Poppies Award for innovation and excellence in Science teaching.
“Mrs Reaburn is one of only 3 teachers in Victoria to receive this award in its inaugural year. She has been recognised for her capacity to be innovative in the classroom to improve outcomes for Science teaching.
“This excellence in teaching at Girton, along with our new first class science facilities, is vital in getting students to study and pursue careers in Science,” Mrs MacCulloch said.
In further science achievements, Lottie Lawler in Year 11 and Tobias Roundhill in Year 12, have been invited to attend the prestigious Youth ANZAAS, a residential four day National Conference for up to 50 science students in Years 10, 11 and 12 from Australian and New Zealand schools. The aim of the annual conference, this year to be held in Adelaide, is to give students a broad perspective on the aims and practice of scientific endeavour, ranging from satisfying curiosity and the drive to discover, to the application of Science in the real world.
“Lottie and Tobias will have the opportunity to visit world-class facilities where research is taking place and meet leading scientists.
“This is a great opportunity for these students to have a really authentic Science experience and to appreciate Science beyond the classroom,” Mrs MacCulloch said.
For more information about the Growing Tall Poppies program, go to www.growingtallpoppies.com
Girton Grammar School graduate and past School Captain, Thomas Duke, was today awarded the “Top All-Round VCE High Achiever Award” at the Premier’s VCE Awards ceremony for achieving study scores of 46 or higher in at least five VCE subjects in 2014, including three scores of perfect 50.
Acting Head of Girton Grammar School, Mrs Robyn MacCulloch, said that Thomas had achieved an ATAR score of 99.95 giving him the highest ATAR Score possible in the VCE.
“Thomas deserved his outstanding individual result. He is an incredibly hard worker and his all-round depth of talent is enviable.
“Thomas was at Girton Grammar from 5 years of age and was Dux of his Year level every year from Grade 3.
“His contribution to those around him and to the community at large during his time at the school was phenomenal,” Mrs MacCulloch said.
Thomas received the “Top All-Round VCE High Achiever” Award and a separate VCE Premier’s Award for English Language. He is now studying Arts (Chancellor’s Scholars Program) / Mathematical Science, at the University of Melbourne. A further three Girton Grammar students received Premier’s VCE Awards today in individual subjects as follows:
“We are incredibly proud of our 2014 cohort, which topped the region for VCE results with a median ATAR score of 81.4 and with 54% of our Year 12 VCE students ranking in the top 20% of the State,” Mrs MacCulloch said.
Tom has also been nominated for the 2014 Australian student prize, the recipient of which will also be announced today.
For most mathematics students, receiving instruction is easy enough, but applying what they have learned can be the tricky part.
This is why Girton Grammar School has introduced a method of learning called ‘Flip the Classroom’. Years 7 and 8 students take home their mathematics lesson on an Ipad, where they can view and importantly, replay, videos of their teacher explaining the mathematical concepts that they will tackle in their next classroom lesson. Students then come to class armed with a clear expectation of what they need to achieve and the knowledge of how to get there.
Acting Head of Girton Grammar School, Mrs Robyn MacCulloch, said that ‘Flip the Classroom’ presentations had been used at the school for 3 years and was proving effective and popular.
“Teachers now spend their time in class helping students to tackle the difficult questions and exercises that would traditionally have been set as homework, rather than using class time to lecture.
“We find that students are less distracted if they are able to absorb math’s concepts in their own time and space at home. It’s also a great way for parents to stay informed about what their children are learning and to assist if needed.
“The students are also taught the Cornell note taking system so they can summarise the key information from each video. The ability to effectively and quickly summarise material is a great skill to have through life.
“The opportunity to pause and replay what their teacher has said on the video is so valuable. It means every student is learning at exactly the right pace for their own learning needs and can consolidate their learning along the way.
“The flipped classroom method allows teachers to use class time to explore topics in greater depth and to give the theory more meaning by spending time on activities and exercises, rather than simply on one-way instruction,” Mrs MacCulloch said.
In addition to the flipped classroom videos, Girton Grammar School also offers after school tutorials in Mathematics three nights a week so that students can also obtain teacher assistance with Mathematical concepts that they are finding difficult.
With more than 25 years of performing and teaching experience, Mr John Quaine is one of Australia’s pre-eminent violin and viola experts, having performed and recorded in a number of groups, including the Australian Philharmonic/Pops Orchestra.
Mr Quaine will conduct three music workshops for the Girton Grammar Junior School students, from Year 2 to Year 6, culminating in a concert for parents.
Acting Head of Girton Grammar School, Mrs Robyn MacCulloch, said that exposing young children to string instruments developed a love of music that often stayed with students for a lifetime.
“All of our Year 2 students learn a string instrument and our Junior School students have the opportunity to perform in either our “Superstrings” or “Pocostrings” groups.
“Having professional musicians like Mr Quaine teach the students their instrument is memorable and invaluable on many levels.
“It’s really inspiring for the students to hear all about the life of a musician and for them to learn some of the finer points about playing their chosen string instrument,” she said.
Mr Quaine has been involved with many groups over the years in both a recording and performing capacity. These groups include: the Australis Sinfonia, Australian Philharmonic/Pops Orchestra, Melbourne Collegium, Australian Baroque Orchestra, Past Echoes, La Romanesca, Arcadia, Australian Bach Orchestra, St John’s Cantata Project Ensemble, Melbourne Musicians, Australian Classical Players, Geelong Chamber Orchestra and the Fouros and Almaty Ensembles.
Girton Grammar Senior School students, today ‘shaved for a cure’ along with Girton Grammar alumni, Tom Keech, who is currently conducting research into treatment of leukemia for his PhD.
Acting Head of Girton Grammar School, Robyn MacCulloch, said that the school has a long history of raising money and awareness for the Leukemia Foundation.
“The school has supported the World’s Greatest Shave event for ten years.
“Fourteen students in Senior School today pledged their commitment to supporting research into Leukemia by being sponsored to have their heads shaved.
“The link at the school is a strong one with one of our past students, Tom Keech, currently doing his PhD on Leukemia.
“Tom was an outstanding science student and was always keen to get into research and today he shaving for a cause that he spends every day researching,” Mrs MacCulloch said.
Tom did a Bachelor of Biomedical Science (Pharmaceutical Science) at RMIT in Melbourne, graduating with First Class Honours, and then did a Research Honours year at the University of Queensland in Brisbane. He then worked as a Research Assistant at the Princess Alexandra Hospital/Griffith University, before starting his PhD.
“I am studying the molecular environment around the leukemic cells.
“I’m looking into whether certain white blood cells, essential for our immune system, can be reprogrammed by the cancer cells to help fight the disease.
“If a specific white blood cell can be changed it might make the leukemic cells more sensitive to chemotherapy,” Tom said.
Media are invited to take photos of Senior School students having their hair shaved in Assembly at 2pm on Friday 8th May, 2015, Vine Street Gymnasium, Girton Grammar Senior School. Tom Keech can be contacted via Alex Fisher, on request. Photos of the event also available on request.
Girton Grammar School 2014 graduate, Andrew McKinnon, has been selected to sing in the Victorian Curriculum and Assessment Authority’s (VCAA) most prestigious performance, Top Acts, tonight at the Melbourne Recital Centre.
Acting Head of Girton Grammar School, Robyn MacCulloch, said that Andrew was a brilliant student who scored full marks in VCE for Music Investigation, a music subject based on voice.
“Andrew has already performed in the VCAA’s Top Class program, for his interpretation of the play “Realism” by Paul Galloway.
“He was one of only 12 students selected in Victoria for this performance at the Melbourne Recital Centre and now he will perform again, this time with a vocal performance.
“Performing in both Top Class and Top Acts is a phenomenal achievement that reflects not only Andrew’s talents but also the strength and depth of Girton’s Performing Arts program,” Mrs MacCulloch said.
Top Acts showcases VCE Performing Arts students who achieved outstanding results in Dance, Drama, Theatre Studies, Music Performance, Music Investigation and Music Style and Composition in 2014. The students perform in a two-hour concert comprising performances including contemporary and classical music performed by soloists and ensembles, scripted and originally devised drama and dance pieces.
“Andrew was selected by different independent VCAA selection panels for both his Top Class and Top Act performances.
“We wish Andrew, along with Mrs Cheryl Long, one of Girton’s talented music tutors who will accompany Andrew, the best of luck for their performance this evening,” Mrs MacCulloch said.
Andrew is currently enjoying a Gap Year and plans to travel to the USA to take part in Camp America before commencing study next year at La Trobe University and pursuing more music and theatre work.
Over 2,500 members of the Girton community will come together to celebrate 132 years of Girton education and the 22nd anniversary of Girton Grammar School this Friday night at Sacred Heart Cathedral in Bendigo.
Acting Head of Girton Grammar School, Robyn MacCulloch, said that remembering the school’s proud history helps students appreciate the school’s current traditions.
“Girton was founded in 1884 making it one of Australia’s oldest schools with a rich history of traditions that give the school its distinctive character.
“The school is an integral part of Bendigo – its reputation for excellence enhances our city and its presence brings vibrancy to our lives,” she said.
The school in its current guise came into existence in 1993 when the Anglican Diocese found itself unable to sustain Girton College, as the school was called at the time. A dedicated group of parents, students and staff worked together to ensure that Girton did not close its doors. In February, 1993 Girton Grammar School opened its doors to students in a new location.
“Girton Grammar School began with 30 staff and 302 students and has grown to a school population of close to 1,200 students and more than 250 staff.
“The strength, courage and tenacity of our founders and their modern day successors is what we celebrate and give thanks for each year at our Foundation Day Service,” Mrs MacCulloch said.