Senior School


Senior School

October 15, 2021

Last night we celebrated the Years 10 – 12 students and their academic, citizenship and co-curricular achievements in our pre-recorded 2021 Presentation Evening. Congratulations to all our Academic Award recipients who were recognised for their excellence across all subjects at Years 10 and 11, or within individual Unit 3/4 subjects at Years 11 and 12. In 2021, our Citizenship Award recipients reflected the number of students, who during the course of the pandemic, have gone above and beyond to connect with their peers and students in other year levels. I also extend a huge thank you to all our 2021 School and House leaders who have led their portfolios magnificently throughout this year. Requiring a plan, A to Z to ensure their event could be conducted onsite or remotely and sometimes needing to switch between the two modes with a days’ notice. On behalf of the student leaders, I also thank and acknowledge the support of their mentor teachers in each role.

There were many highlights and being able to once again share the House Dances from Term 1, House Music from Term 2, and some photographs from our House Athletics and Cross Country events showcased the enthusiasm and extensive contribution our students have been able to make to the co-curricular program of the school even during the pandemic.

The format we have used these past two years to ensure our Senior School community have been able to celebrate the year with us is also something we are incredibly proud of. I am very grateful to all our staff, both teaching and professional services who meticulously plan for this event and wish to recognise Mr Kim Perkins for his efforts in bringing it all to life.

Thanking the current School and House leaders and introducing the new leaders has also become a feature of our Presentation Night, and at this time I again extend my appreciation to all of the 2021 leaders and congratulate all of our 2022 leaders on their appointments. The leadership process at CGGS is one we can certainly be very proud of. It is rigorous and extensive, and many staff and current student leaders are involved in this process which has been developed and coordinated by Ms Kath Woolcock and Mr Shane Maycock. Thank you both for the leadership programs and opportunities you have created for our students.

We were also able to have our Celebration of Sport assembly, which can be viewed further down in this edition of CamNews. Congratulations to all our students who received awards and participated in our Sport programs throughout the year. We congratulate all the Year Level Champion recipients, Changemaker Award winners Belinda Lemanis and Cathy Gu, and our Sportswoman of the Year winner Isabella Tremewen.

Last week, our Year 9 students also enjoyed their final Seasonal Learning conference for this year, an incredible ‘World of Work’ CGGS Careers program that all Years 9s took part in. We were fortunate to have some of our parents, alumni and old Grammarians take part in this program. Thank you to all of those involved and for helping to create a wonderful opportunity for our students.

This week the Year 7 and 8 students took part in PROJECT ROCKIT, a workshop discussing respectful relationships and behaviours and empowering our students to stand up to bullying. We hope the students enjoyed these sessions and took away some valuable moments from the day.

Cathy Poyser
Deputy Principal / Head of Senior School

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 ages 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

Zoe Giagoudakis

Was there anyone important to you in your DOE experience?
The people who were important in my Duke of Ed journey were the other girls that were also doing Duke of Ed with me. It was great to have someone to communicate with about how we were progressing with the program and what the lies in the future for us.

How would you improve your experience if you did it again?
I could improve my Duke of Ed journey by just being more up to date with logging my hours. Duke of Ed is a good way to improve your time management skills through continuously filling in your activity hours.

What would you tell someone just starting or thinking about DOE?
My advice to someone initially starting Duke of Ed would be to just give it a go because it’s a really great opportunity to extend yourself and it’s also a great thing for your resume.

Interview by Isabella Wood and Bella Fary

2021 Science Talent Search

This year, the Science Talent Search was Food: Different By Design. Students could choose to create a short story, board game, video or poster that explained some aspect of science, or to plan and conduct their own original experimental research. It was wonderful to witness the enthusiasm and energy that the students involved displayed over the course of the program, and the flexibility and perseverance that they showed when completing or modifying their projects due to remote learning.

Congratulations to all the students who participated in the Science Talent Search program this year. We are delighted to announce that three students were awarded Major Bursaries for their projects and 12 Minor Bursaries. There were a further 6 projects awarded Distinctions or Merits.

Students will be presented with their certificates at an assembly later this year, and those students who have been awarded a Bursary will be able to attend an online awards ceremony on Monday 8 November at school.

You can view all projects entered for judging attached below.

Penny Dumsday
Science Teacher

PYOE Competition 2021 – CGGS on the podium again!

The Plan Your Own Enterprise Competition (PYOE) is an annual opportunity run by Business Educators Australasia in conjunction with the Victorian Commercial Teachers Association, for students across Australia to create and submit a Business Plan based on a specified set of criteria. The competition is open to students of all ages but is dominated by students in Years 10 and 11, with approximately 1000 entries from students in these year levels received each year.

At CGGS, the PYOE competition forms part of the Year 9 Commerce curriculum with students having the option to submit the Business Plans they create as part of the ‘Power and Enterprise’ unit of study. Students can choose to work individually or as a group and each year we love reading about the ideas they come up with and encourage all students to throw their hat in the ring for the $1000 prize money up for grabs!

CGGS has an impressive track record of success with this competition having had group entries that have won the National Competition in three of the last 5 years. This year we are very proud to announce that Sophie Chang, Hannah Croft and Keona Siaw finished Runners Up in the group category for Victoria, with their business plan for ‘Keikko,’ a business selling customisable, environmentally conscious, home-delivered lunchbox cakes. Also, Izzie Wood finished third in the Individual category for Victoria with her business plan for ‘Custom Cards,’ a business selling customisable greeting cards via an online service.

These results are a fitting acknowledgement of the rigour our students apply to the execution of this task and are particularly impressive given the competition attracts entries from students undertaking Units 1 & 2 Business Management.

All our Year 9 students are to be congratulated for the work they put into their PYOE Business Plans this year. As well as providing a genuinely creative way for students to continue developing their communication, problem solving and time management skills, the diversity of ideas and clarity of expression presented in these plans made reading them a real pleasure.

We can’t wait to see what ideas 2022 will bring!

Ali Larkey, Zenab Zavery, Chris Anton and Karoline Walter
Year 9 Commerce Team

Year 9 World of Work

The final Year 9 Seasonal Learning Conference took place last Thursday and Friday, on the theme of World of Work. An introduction to the CGGS Careers program, this conference delivered a range of experiences for the students as they worked from home.

We were delighted to begin this conference during the holidays with an official invitation and conference swag being delivered to the students at home. Partnering with two female led and owned companies, Write to Me and Myrtle and Moss, our conference packages provided not only some keepsakes but sustenance for the two days as well.

Click below to read on about what took place on Day One and Day Two of our World of Work program.

Kate Manners
Head of Strategic Initiatives


Each year, as part of the Wellbeing Program, CGGS hosts PROJECT ROCKIT to deliver their innovative and empathy-based workshops that discuss respectful relationships and respectful behaviour. PROJECT ROCKIT is Australia’s youth-driven movement against bullying, hate and prejudice. Through online and face-to-face workshops, they empower school students to challenge anti-social behaviour, including bullying, by standing up for themselves and others. While we do not see bullying very often in our school community, the skills of being an upstander and empowering young people to make change at a societal level is an important goal.

On Monday 12 October, the Year 7 students took part in two online workshops: ‘Looking out for each other online,’ and ‘Respect and Empathy’. These sessions aimed to create an online space where all young people have access to respect, acceptance, creative expression, and feel empowered to be themselves. Working through a series of videos, polls and questions, the presenters were able to engage the Year 7 students to lead positive change at school, online and beyond.

The Year 8 students heard from Lucy Thomas, the CEO and co-founder of PROJECT ROCKIT, as she delivered a keynote address that explored the benefits and challenges of social media, its role as a tool for connection and the power of kindness, integrity, and honesty in the way we communicate and respond to each other. Lucy provided six key strategies to promote digital wellbeing and digital safety including the importance of designing an online world that is meaningful for you, seeking and showing support, taking time off, being kind to yourself and standing together. These sessions form an important part of our wellbeing program and will be further explored as part of our Period 5 and Health curriculum throughout Term 4.

Kath Woolcock
Deputy Head of Senior School – Student Wellbeing

Celebration of Sport Assembly

The 2021 Celebration of Sport assembly was a wonderful opportunity to recognise the fantastic sporting achievements recorded over the past twelve months, including GSV Finals Evening participants, Changemaker Awards, Year Level Champions and Sportswoman of the Year. If you would like to watch the Celebration for Sport presentation, please use the following link.

We were also fortunate to have Australian Softballer, Jenny Holliday, as our guest speaker. Jenny represented Australia in three softball World Championships before playing in the sport’s Olympic debut at Atlanta 1996. She helped Australia win the bronze medal, behind the United States and China. Jenny talks about how she overcame adversity to achieve her goal of being an Australian Softballer by training hard, being focused and having clear goals. She also touched on the importance of having the courage to try and surrounding yourself with great people to support you through your journey.

Another major award presented was the 2021 Australian Olympic Change-Maker award. This award recognises students who demonstrate sporting excellence whilst exemplifying the Olympic values. These recipients have demonstrated the Olympic spirit through leadership and driving positive change, whether it’s through leading teams, coaching Juniors, or supporting Seniors. This award is celebrated nationally and hosted by the Victorian Olympic Council. This year we were very excited to announce Belinda Lemanis and Cathy Gu as the two recipients of the 2021 CGGS Olympic Change Maker Award.

The Year Level Champion award was presented to the student in each year level who contributed the most to sport at CGGS. This award took into consideration the number of sports each student has participated in, as well as their attitude, commitment to training, performance, leadership and level of improvement throughout the year.

The award winners are as follows:

The major award for the afternoon was the Sports Woman of the Year Award which recognised the student who had contributed the most to sport at CGGS across all year levels. This year the Sports Woman of the year has competed in Softball, Swimming, Diving, Cross Country, Water Polo, AFL, Athletics and Soccer and due to her attitude, commitment, leadership, improvement, and performance. The 2021 Sportswoman of the year was awarded to Isabella Tremewen.

Thank you to our 2021 Sports Captain, Cathy Gu and all the House Sports Captains – Lauren Bernabe, Nicole Ang, Emmelyn Choo-Lambropoulos, Annabel Plummer, Emma Peak, Charli Lincke, Ella Robinson and Ruvina Suriyapperuma for everything they have contributed to the sports program this year. Also, thank you to the PFA – Friends of Sport, all the staff, coaches, parents and students who have made 2021 sport possible. We look forward to seeing you all for an even bigger year of sport in 2022!

Lauren Law
Head of Sport

River Nile School and Learning Centre

Since 2008, CGGS has supported the work of River Nile, which was set up initially by the Anglican Parish of Footscray to teach English to Sudanese refugee and asylum seeker women. Since then, it has diversified its work to include any recent refugee or asylum seeker women, has relocated to North Melbourne, and been registered as a school to teach VCAL (Victorian Certificate of Applied Learning) classes. Prior to last year, our CGGS Year 9 students have made visits to River Nile in small groups on a voluntary roster basis throughout the year offering childcare or help in distributing food brought in from Foodbank Victoria. On occasions we have run our own food drives for River Nile, however none of these activities have been possible during 2020-2021. We have kept in touch and during Term 2 the River Nile teachers suggested a new way that we could help support them remotely, by our Year 9 students offering to be pen pals to some of their VCAL students. This would help their students with their English writing and comprehension.

We were thrilled when last term there was a call out for volunteers from our Year 9 cohort, just before the end of Term 3, and a number of our Year 9s were put in touch with two (or in one case, three) River Nile students. It’s all very new, but we hope and look forward to some lively email exchanges.

Duncan Reid
Head of Religious Education

Videos for Change

Videos for Change is a way for young people to develop confidence, practice social advocacy, and build valuable 21st-century skills they need for a better future. This year, for the first time, CGGS was delighted to enter four teams of Year 10 students into the Videos for Change National Competition.

This competition required participants to create a one-minute video that shows empathy, builds awareness and inspires action. Although begun on campus, students have worked on their submissions almost exclusively whilst in lockdown. We are very proud of all four teams and delighted that two of these have been selected as national finalists. The videos ‘Disconnected’ by Scarlett Giang and Natalie Chung, and ‘#strideinyourstyle’ by Salwa Saiba, Nektaria Toscas, Siena Yap, Salome Obeyesekere, Jaya Akritidis and May Du have made it to the finals in the Senior High School category for students in Year 10–12.

Their videos were selected from hundreds of submissions from across the country which went through two rounds of initial judging and are now sitting with a group of external judges with expertise in social media, mainstream media and film, and documentary making. In making the finals, these videos are also eligible for the People’s Choice Award, where members of the public can view all of the finalists and cast votes towards their favourites. Voting will be held from Monday 18 – Monday 25 October, with winners being announced in November.

Please visit the link here to Videos for Change for more information on the competition and opportunity to support our students in the People’s Choice Award.

Kate Manners
Head of Strategic Initiatives

National Youth Science Forum 2022

Congratulations to Bethany Orme and Harkee Judge who have been selected through an interview process to attend the National Youth Science Forum 2022 (NYSF). Access to this forum is highly prized by Year 12 science students nationally, so we are very proud that Bethany and Harkee have been given the opportunity to attend.

The NYSF is a 12-day program from 10-25 January 2022, which includes keynote speakers, lectures, hands-on workshops, debates, expos and enriching social activities. In-person STEM visit days and events are held over a week of the program at major city hubs across the country, enabling students to meet each other and network with like-minded peers. A continuous program of digital events will also run alongside the in-person events.

We wish Bethany and Harkee all the best for the forum and look forward to hearing all about their experiences on our return to school in 2022.

Di Wood
Acting Head of Science

Victorian Secondary Girls Chess Finals

With a consistent record of making State finals, CGGS once again fielded a strong team on Tuesday 12 October in the State finals of School Chess, having qualified earlier in the year. The online event saw Emily Lin, Bethany Orme, Kelly Ta (Year 11), Sophie Chang and Lucy Ciro (Year 9) compete via the platform.

Playing 7 matches each, with strict time pressure, they competed for over 4 hours. Camberwell Girls came in fourth – an excellent result demonstrating high levels of skill, concentration, and commitment.

With uncertain internet and some classes at school, Sophie and Emily competed from School, with Bethany, Kelly and Lucy logging in from their homes. The students missed some of the team feel of the event but were grateful that the finals went ahead, and they all enjoyed the experience.

Helen Pappas
Biology & Science Teacher

House Celebration

Today we had the opportunity to thank our 2021 captains, celebrate the house spirit shown by our community this year and induct our 2022 House leaders.

It was wonderful to see the colour and enthusiasm as over 400 students and teachers joined to celebrate the 2021 House program. A special mention to the 2021 House Captains Karen and Ella (Lawrence), Jess and Seanna (Singleton), Rachel and Claire (Schofield) and Chantelle and Aalisha (Taylor) and 2021 School House Captain Chloe Langley on their roles in supporting the school community this year.

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

A final lesson on the power of language to the VCE German students

The trials and tribulations of learning a foreign language were celebrated with the endearing children’s storybook “The Word Factory” (Die Wörterfabrik) in the final lesson for the Year 12 German students, who completed the oral component of their studies last week.

Anyone who has learned a foreign language will be able to identify with the inability to find that precise word or expression to convey meaning. However, communication can take many forms and in this charming book, people live in a country where words are a luxury. In this ‘Land of the great Word Factory,’ people must buy and swallow words in order to speak them. Words in this country are a luxury, reserved for the rich. So how can the boy named Paul show his love to Marie, when he cannot afford to buy words to show his love?  Fortunately, he has been lucky to find just that one meaningful word that he pulled from the rubbish bin to save their romance!

The students were left to reflect about the magic of words and language, and about how you say something is often more important than what you say. All the best wishes accompany them on their future endeavours!

Ingrid Beck
German Teacher

Virtual Education Outdoors

As published in last weeks Senior School Weekly, week 3 will see students participating in a Virtual Education Outdoors Adventure. Students have been sent a brief outline of the program with further details being sent Monday morning. The website students will access is and is live for students and family to plan their week of adventure.

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

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

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

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

Senior School


Senior School

July 23, 2021

Term 3 started with Senior School students in the Middle School Production of “The Light Burns Blue,” and the House Music event at school rehearsing on both Monday 12 and Tuesday 13 July, the staff professional development days. Thankfully we made the decision at the end of last term to allow these students onsite to practice for both these events, and I am delighted to say we were able to honour the hard work of these students and the teachers who have supported them throughout, by holding the events under somewhat changed parameters.

The Middle School Production was re-introduced this year to enable students in Years 7 – 9 the opportunity to be involved in a drama performance given the Centenary spectacular did not go ahead as planned.

Keira Lyons, Head of Drama and Performing Arts, along with a team of dedicated staff and past students including Madison Brake who coordinated the Lighting Design, supported, guided and trained the two casts and crew throughout the many interruptions, both in person and online so that the parents of these students were able to enjoy live performances last week.

As a school community we are all most grateful to the students and staff involved in bringing this story to life. I had the pleasure of watching both Cast A and Cast B and never cease to be amazed at what our students are capable of achieving. Thank you all for this privilege.

With some post recording editing still to be completed on the recording of this event, we look forward to sharing both full performances with our community in the next edition of Camnews.

On Thursday 15 July, when this most recent lockdown looked imminent, we swiftly went to work with the House Music Captains and conducted two of the House Music event elements, Choice and Madrigal. Again, all the Senior School students have been rehearsing throughout Term 2 when singing has been permitted within the Victorian Government Operations Guidelines.

The students involved in Choice and Madrigal groups for each House were brought together at recess and the decision was made to record and livestream these performances in Periods 5 and 6, prior to but realising, another lockdown would be announced late that afternoon.

The creative abilities of our students were able to shine, due to the immediate action and proactive decision making that took place. There were many layers of ‘creative chaos’ throughout the morning, so to see the students perform at their best, whilst continuing to problem solve even within the presentations, was nothing short of amazing! We are very proud of the resilience and maturity the House Music Captains displayed. They truly showcased the power of music!

Thank you to all the House Music Captains – Teagan Diep and Teresa Guo (Lawrence), Sarah Hui and Janice Wong (Schofield), Kelly Liang and Megan Kuo (Taylor), and Chloe Law and Nicole Change (Singleton).

Whilst not yet the full program, as the Theme and judging components are still to be performed, delivered and recorded before resharing with our school community, I think we could all do something joyful at this time. Please enjoy watching the Choice and Madrigal elements of the 2021 House Music competition.

With special thanks to Mr Kim Perkins, Head of Media Technologies, for all his efforts in supporting all our events at CGGS.

I would like to share with you all the quote Directors of Music, Rohan Mack and Kate Savige included in their House Music program.

“What if a large number of scientific studies found there was one activity that could improve our cognitive function, help our memory systems work effectively, help us learn language, help us moderate our emotional states, help us solve complex problems and help our brains be healthier into later life? What if that activity was also enjoyable for everyone involved? There is one such activity: music education.” – Dr Anita Collins: Neuromusical Educator

I wish our CGGS community a restful weekend.

Warm regards,

Cathy Poyser
Head of Senior School

Introduction to the UCAT

The University Clinical Aptitude Test (UCAT ANZ) is an admissions test used by the UCAT ANZ Consortium of universities in Australia and New Zealand for their medical, dental and clinical science degree programmes.

The test helps universities to select applicants with the most appropriate abilities and professional behaviours required for new doctors and dentists to be successful in their clinical careers. It is used in collaboration with other admissions processes such as interviews and academic qualifications.

It is also an opportunity to stand out from other applicants and demonstrate aptitude for a demanding programme of study.

The UCAT ANZ is a computer-based test delivered in Pearson VUE test centres throughout Australia, New Zealand and at some overseas locations and can ONLY be completed when a student is in Year 12.

Michael Tsai from iCanMed organised a very informative, entertaining and practical information session ‘Introduction to the UCAT’ for interested students in Years 10 & 11 during the Upskill By Design program on Tuesday. Michael was keen to point out how important it was to become knowledgeable about the UCAT’s type of questions, timing and speed in answering questions – all necessary for a successful completion of this test. Students were left in no doubt that a good score on the UCAT depends on preparation, hard work and application.

Students can now research more thoroughly the variety of UCAT preparation courses that are available, if they wish to prepare for this test as part of the undergraduate medical course application in 2023 or 2024.

Best wishes to all our aspiring medical practitioners, including the current Year 12s interested in this field!

Trish Dolan
Careers Counsellor

Global Leadership Summit for Girls

On Monday 12 July, Maya Jones and Emily Lin from Year 11, together with Salwa Saiba and Siena Yap from Year 10, attended virtual Global Leadership Summit for Girls. The Global Summit is an annual event that connects passionate youth from around the world for a series of key notes speakers, discussions and panels to tackle topics that are important to our global community. As part of the program, students also had the opportunity to attend the Leadership Summit Tour: Asia & Oceania region, which will specifically focused on climate justice and gender equality. Below is a reflection from Salwa Saiba, who attended multiple aspects of the program.

“I joined one of the webinars on Monday. The panel consisted of both young and experienced activists and social workers, who helped to create an amazing conversation. I loved hearing from all these empowering women, who have made significant contributions in their respective areas of focus. They gave great tips, insights and possible solutions to the problem of gender inequality and climate change. Before this I didn’t know the connection between climate change and gender-based biases, which has created a bigger gap between the traditional male and female roles and their impact on women in 21st century. This webinar helped gain a lot of knowledge and a starting point from where I can explore these two issues as one whole problem.

I would love to part of such leadership opportunities in the future, as they provide me with an opportunity to gain leadership skills and essential knowledge about gender inequality – a topic I am passionate about and wish to explore more. Thank you for recommending us such a great webinar.”

Kath Woolcock
Deputy Head of Senior School – Student Wellbeing

The Berthe Mouchette French Poetry Competition

Every year, CGGS participates in the Alliance Française Berthe Mouchette Poetry competition where students memorise a French poem and usually then present it to a judge who comes to the school from the Alliance Française. This year, our students were amongst 6,500 other participants who recorded their poems and sent the videos in to the Berthe Mouchette.

The French Department are very proud of all our students. It is no mean feat to learn a poem in another language and then deliver it. Well done to all those who took part.

True to French educational tradition where every assessment is marked out of 20 (true story!), the students are awarded a mark out of 20 based on fluency, pronunciation, expression and intonation. To be a finalist, students must achieve a lofty 20 mark and this year, a remarkable 46 students from Years 5 to 10 have made it into the finals and will recite their poem again to French judges on Zoom in August.

Click the button to view the list of finalists.

All participants will a receive a certificate later in the term. Félicitations à tout le monde!

Dr Jo Rittey
Head of LOTE

Middle School Production – The Light Burns Blue

A little about “The Light Burns Blue”

Seventeen-year-old Elsie Wright has never done well at school and though her drawings are extraordinary, a career as an artist isn’t something a girl from a run-of-the-mill village like Cottingley could normally aspire to. It’s 1917, there’s a war on and the constant news of deaths from the front are affecting every family in her village – including her own – meaning Elsie’s artistic endeavours aren’t top of anyone’s list of priorities to encourage.

The characters and events depicted in this story are fictions rooted in reality. There was an Elsie Wright who photographed fairies. There was a Frances Griffiths who posed with them. The photographs did manage to capture the imagination of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle (creator of Sherlock Holmes), who did champion the photographs as proof that fairies exist.

However, this play is not a biography or a documentary. Nothing ruins a good tale like too much reality.  It’s time to set the record straight and give Elsie the ending she deserves.

Director: Keira Lyons

Lighting Design: Madison Brake (Class of 2019)

Magic Tuition: Tim Mason (Melbourne Magic Academy)

We would like to acknowledge all cast members, click the button to view all the cast members.

Keira Lyons
Head of Performing Arts

House Music Performances

Last Thursday (prior to the lockdown), the House Music Captains were quick to acknowledge a potential move into remote learning. They, along with all performers, lighting and technical teams were receptive to bringing their performances forward and willing to gather their required resources to enable each House to present their Madrigal and Choice items to the school that afternoon. The House Music Captains, whilst juggling many creative balls in the air, supported and encouraged each other to prepare for the performances. They are to be congratulated on their abilities to accept the unexpected and devise creative solutions to maintain their high quality work. All of the students involved had fun and valued the opportunity to come together and perform.

The House Music rehearsal process and performances have enabled our students to make strong interpersonal connections across all year levels. This continues to be a strength of our Performing Arts departments, whether it be online or live in the Barbara Sutton Hall. Many thanks to the large group of students and staff who assisted with the preparations for the performances and the recording of the presentations. A special thank you to Kim Perkins, Mark Major and Stefi Allinson for facilitating the live stream to students and the recording of all performances.

Kate Savige and Rohan Mack
Directors of Music

Saturday Netball

We are very sad that we won’t be on court again this weekend at the Boroondara Netball Association for our fun filled day of netball but we are very hopeful for a return to Saturday netball very soon.

In the meantime, we had our very first Live Zoom Netball Training Session for all teams on Monday night. We had over 30 athletes on Zoom across all teams from Year 4 to 12 and all athletes worked so hard.

We completed a tough circuit, with some tricky ball skills in there but most of all, we were very active, connected, and we had some fun. It was also great to see our fellow team members.

We will continue to run our Live Zoom Netball Trainings while we are on remote learning. These training sessions will replace our court training until further notice.

Thank you, to all the players for their participation and to the parents and guardians for your continued support in your daughter’s netball journey.

Alexia McConnell
Netball Coordinator

Upskill …By Design

On 20 July, Year 7 students had their first Upskill…BY DESIGN Day for Semester Two. Students first took part in the CS in School program where they had the opportunity to refine their coding skills, with the guidance of industry professionals. Students were then asked to take some time off- screen and choose from a number of activities. Some of the options included: at home science experiments, painting, re organising their bedroom and cooking lunch for their family.

As can be seen on the Padlet, students from each form undertook many different activities and it was wonderful to see how they chose to spend their time! Students were then encouraged to take part in Wellbeing time, accessing the CGGS 360@ Wellbeing website. To finish the day, students took part in the CGGS Netflix party, watching the Bee Movie together. Another productive Upskill…BY DESIGN Day, with the focus on students staying connected and engaged.

Tuba Ozak
Year 7 Coordinator

Swinburne Youth Space Innovation Challenge

Space travel has been in the news over the past few weeks, most recently with the coverage of Jeff Bezos’ pilotless flight. Space exploration has moved beyond the domain of governments and the industry continues to see a growth in commercial companies joining the space race.

Swinburne University is well known for its work in this field and particularly its innovative STEM programs for school students. Five Year 10 and 11 students from Camberwell Girls Grammar School, Bethany Orme, Georgia Papadopoulos, Noyesha Agarwal, Ananyaa Virjania and Paula Jimenez Perez, have been fortunate to take part in the 2021 Swinburne Youth Space Innovation Challenge (SYSIC). Supported by The Australian Space Agency and lead by a number of Swinburne University staff, including the Dean of Science, Professor Virginia Kilborn, astronomer, Dr Rebecca Allen and PhD candidate, Sara Webb, this 10 week program involved participation in a micro-unit inspired by Swinburne’s Space Technology co-major, in order to develop the necessary skills for creating a space experiment and culminated in a video pitch to a panel of Swinburne University staff and mentors involved in space-related research. The pitch involved presenting an idea for an experiment to send to the International Space Station. Students engaged in weekly online mentor sessions. These sessions provided support relating to the micro-unit content and pitch presentations and also offered insights into some of the opportunities a STEM education affords.

The initial expectation was for one team’s idea to be chosen and for that team to continue working with Swinburne University to develop a viable experiment. The SYSIC leaders were so impressed with the quality of the work from all teams involved in the program, they changed the structure to enable each team to play a part in the lead team’s project. Our students pitched an idea about using Pavogen tiles to transform kinetic energy into electricity. Although the team’s experiment idea was not chosen to be sent to the International Space Station, the judges were impressed with the originality of the idea and commended our students for the thinking and work reflected in the pitch. It is a wonderful opportunity for our students to be able to work alongside experts and other students with similar interests, and to continue to be involved in this collaboration.

Dr Charlotte Forwood
Director of Learning Design and Development

CGGS Netflix Party

As we are all distance from each other during another period of remote learning, as School Captains, we thought it would be fitting to run an activity to help students and staff relax and connect during this period of time apart. Taking place on our Upskill BY DESIGN day, SEA invited all students and staff to join in a whole school Netflix Party.

We chose to watch the ‘Bee Movie’, a classic movie we knew would BEE something warm-hearted for everyone to watch together, despite being apart. We were so grateful to see so many Year 7 – 12 students and staff join.

SEA (Sophia, Eloise and Ashley)

Senior School


Senior School

June 25, 2021

Term 2 2021 has been a term like no other. On again, off again live performances with audiences for House Music and the Middle School Production. Face-to-face learning, remote learning and thankfully back to face-to-face learning. Co-curricular activities led by students in person and then on zoom and also thankfully back to in person. Whilst flexibility, agility and pivoting may have been overused words in 2020, they truly did have significance in Term 2. I take this opportunity to thank all our students, their parents and guardians as well as our teaching and professional services staff for the combined efforts and dedication that ensured Term 2 was highly successful for all.

Please enjoy all the articles in this edition of CamNews where the Senior School highlights and happenings of the past fortnight are summarised in detail. Please keep up to date with our Social Media accounts that provide live updates of what is occurring day-to-day. Hopefully our entire Senior School community is able to connect with and enjoy both means of communication.

Have a lovely break.

Warm regards,

Cathy Poyser
Deputy Principal/Head of Senior School

House Readers Cup

Over the course of Term 2, students from Years 7 to 12 participated in the House Readers Cup, a competition where students were able to earn points for their house through reading books. To do so, students had to borrow a book from our school library, read it over the term and then review it on our new library website. This was our second year running the competition, and it was a huge success as we had almost 700 books read in one term!  We had some amazing 5-star reviews, and some equally amazing 2-star reviews. It was great to read through them all and hear our students voices and opinions on what they were reading. We are very lucky to already have such a thriving reading culture here at CGGS, and the House Readers Cup was a direct reflection of this. Many students came into the library looking for specific books after reading others’ reviews, and were keen to recommend some of their own favourites to their peers as well. Congratulations to Taylor, who was the overall winner of the House Readers Cup and was awarded with the esteemed House Readers Duck.

There were a few students who went above and beyond for their house. For their prize, our Top 3 Readers this year will receive a new book of their choice.

1st   Amanda Lee (63 books)

2nd Isabelle Bertus (19 books)

3rd Sabrina Bignold (16 books)

Thank you to everyone for participating in the House Readers Cup, and we hope to see all of you in the library soon!

Nina D’Souza
Library Assistant

House Awards 2021

When asked, many an old grammarian will highlight that one of their favourite memories of life at Camberwell will involve an aspect of a House Activity or Event. Camberwell students have shown their dedication to the House program over the last 18 months, standing up in the face of COVID, and ensuring that traditions continue, connectedness remains and the culture of what the House program means to students continue to be passed on.

I would like to take this opportunity to acknowledge 2021 Heads of House: Mr Daniel Loff (Lawrence), Ms Asia Kosowski (Schofield), Mr Tom Clark (Singleton) and Ms Christa Cook (Taylor) along with School House Captain Chloe Langley and House Captains: Ella Barmby and Karen Ng (Lawrence), Rachel Wong and Claire Robertson (Schofield), Jess Brake and Seanna Henricus (Singleton) and Chantelle Chuang and Aalisha Wong (Taylor) along with ALL student leaders for their huge efforts working with all students, being adaptable and ensuring the core values of the House program continue in all activities.

The House program continues to evolve and ensure that student interests, connectedness and culture are at the fore of all activities (see House Readers Cup below). With COVID disrupting our diarised events, we continue to plan House Music performances with the view that early Term 3 and an easing of restrictions, we will be able to perform some of these events LIVE!

The following Senior Students are to be congratulated on their continued contribution to House Activities and receiving the following Awards:

House Badge – 30 House Points

Year 11

Sheanne Goh

Jessica Huang

Felicia Ieong

Harkee Judge

Anastasia Konstantinou

Jessica Lee

Opal Liu

Eloise Rhodes

Peghah Shahverdi

Stamatia Stathopoulos

Micah Tan

Christine Xian

Yilia Zhang

Yuki Zhou


Year 12

Yuqing Chi

Millie Winkett


House Colours – 60 House Points

Year 11

Gabby Abbott

Nicole Ang

Emmelyn Choo-Lambropoulos

Isabel D’Souza

Ella Ding

Sarah Hui

Maya Jones

Megan Kuo

Annaliese Le

Natasha Rupar

Priyanshi Shah

Amelia Westerman

Katrina Xu


Year 12

Jessica Brake

Saraha Carr

Maggie Hu

Ellen Kontossis

Alannah Moriss

Anika Pandy

Megan Quach

Christine Wang

Manisha Wickramasinghe


House Double Colours – 90 House Points

Year 11

Teagan Diep


Year 12

Chantelle Chuang

Chloe Langley

Rachel Lau

Zara Price

Rachel Wong


Congratulations to all the students on their achievements!

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

House Public Speaking

Whilst the pandemic complicated school events, one which we were fortunate enough to continue with, was the House Public Speaking competition. Participants from every grade showed their resilience and passion for public speaking, presenting their speeches via our favourite internet conferencing tool: Zoom.

The Junior division (years 7 to 8) offered exciting and thoughtful responses to the topic ‘tradition brings us together to celebrate our culture and history’. The Intermediate division (years 9 to 10) delivered thought-provoking and inspirational interpretations on the topic ‘nothing worthwhile is ever easy’. The Senior division (year 11 to 12) concluded the competition with complex and sophisticated responses to the prompt ‘war is peace’- a quote from Orwell’s classic 1984. Each and every participant prepared brilliant speeches with flair, displaying their resilience in spite of remote learning.

Speeches for each division were presented on different lunchtimes and adjudicated by lovely members of the CGGS staff including Reverend Creed, Mr Maycock, Ms Oliver, Ms Gordon and Ms Watkins. With much appreciated guidance from Ms Watkins, who oversaw the competition, I had the privilege of hosting and introducing speakers between each round, aided by Zoom’s highly expressive communication tools – emojis. House Public Speaking 2021 was certainly one to remember!

Emma Zhi – 12D

Emily Zhang awarded AMusA Diploma & places in Ringwood Eisteddfod!

Emily Zhang (7B) has recently been awarded her A.Mus.A Diploma in violin, from the Australian Music Examination Board. This Diploma is in recognition of students achieving an outstanding level of playing and requires many years of study and long hours of practice – it is an exceptional achievement!

Also, in the recent Ringwood Eisteddfod, Emily won equal 2nd in the 12 years and under on Friday 11 June, and equal 3rd in the 14 years and under on Saturday 12 June.

The Ringwood Eisteddfod is an annual event, now in its 67th year, and is an extensive competition for instrumentalists and vocalists run over several weeks. The level of performance is always very high, with many aspiring young musicians entering this popular event. This year, it was fortunate that the competition was a live event.

Congratulations, Emily, on your wonderful triumphs!

Year 10 2021 VCE Subject Selection

As a Year 10 student, choosing a VCE study program can seem a bit overwhelming. At CGGS there is an extensive schedule of events designed to build the students’ career knowledge and develop their career decision making skills so students make a seamless transition to the VCE.

Such events have included career education classes, virtual work experience, ‘MyCareerMatch’ interest assessment, mentoring events, the VCE Information Day and individual career interviews with Mrs Dolan, Careers Counsellor. These experiences culminated in the all-important VCE Information evening when students and parents had the opportunity to talk to teachers about subject selection. They were also provided with a VCE information pack with material from tertiary institutions, VTAC and the CGGS 2022 VCE Curriculum Guide.  There was a great buzz in Robinson Hall as students chatted, discussed and reviewed possible subject combinations and where they might lead to in 2024.

Over the next few week students will consult with teachers, parents and current VCE students to select their subjects for their VCE program, giving themselves the best opportunity to be happy with their choices. Subject selection applications are due in by Friday 23rd July 2021.

Trish Dolan
Careers Counsellor

Senior School


Senior School

June 11, 2021

Each fortnight, there are many wonderful school events that we recognise, acknowledging the achievements of both individual students and those of entire year levels. Today I would like to recognise our entire Senior School community for yet again rapidly adapting to a changed environment. While we are all supportive of the changes necessary to keep our state safe and free of COVID, these lockdowns are not without a toll on the individuals. Our students have been asked to reverse, move sideways, reschedule, postpone and reinvent. Yet, through it all, they continue to give off their best. The adults among us have also found the demands of the fourth lockdown challenging, but we all take heart from the resilience of our young people.

This past fortnight, our Reconciliation Captains Jacqueline de Mamiel and Caitlin Sutton worked alongside Ms Georgia Biggs, Year 9 Coordinator, to ensure we were able to mark Reconciliation Week appropriately. Throughout the week they hosted the Reconciliation Assembly and sent the school community emails to provoke thought and inform us all. Please read their reflections in this edition of CamNews.

This year our school Careers Counsellor, Mrs Trish Dolan swiftly changed her mode of delivery and planned and conducted a full and informative Work Experience program online for our Year 10 students. Trish worked with Mr James Henderson, Year 10 Coordinator, to ensure the Year 10 students were able to experience a rich array of industries.

This Queen’s Birthday long weekend, while we have more freedom to move and meet with others, please ensure your support of favourite local cafes, restaurants and other businesses and opportunities for exercise are undertaken with care.

With my best wishes for a safe, warm and restful long weekend.

Warm regards,

Cathy Poyser
Deputy Principal/Head of Senior School

National Reconciliation Week

National Reconciliation Week at CGGS is a very important event for the CGGS community to recognise and celebrate. This year, Reconciliation Captains Caitlin and Jacqueline, alongside myself and Wurundjeri elder Murrundindi, had planned many exciting events using the theme More than a word, reconciliation takes Action as our springboard and guide. This theme is a particularly important one, off the back of 2020, where Black Lives Matter protests and Invasion Day rallies gained huge momentum; an important conversation was well and truly at the front of public discourse.

Globally, social media posts from members of the BIPOC communities and allyship from non-BIPOC communities helped many gain deeper understanding of issues affecting minority groups; including systems and structures that have been designed to oppress and marginalise. Here in Australia, we saw First Nations voices leading a conversation in many pockets of the media and social media, powerfully sharing lived experience; calling out and calling on change. Allies also stood by these voices, amplifying where they could in a show of solidarity, respect and care. In 2021, More than a word, reconciliation takes action asks people to take this awareness and knowledge to create more substantive action. For reconciliation to be effective, it must involve truth-telling, but it also must actively address issues of inequality, systemic racism and instances where the rights of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples are ignored, denied or reduced.

While many of the events on the CGGS NRW calendar unfortunately had to be postponed due to the snap lockdown in Victoria; witnessing the flexibility and motivation of Jacqueline and Caitlin to keep some of the events was extremely inspiring. The future is in good hands when two allies such as themselves are doing such great work.

Here are their reflections of the week (and keep your eye out for some exciting events that will be taking place later in the school year).


Caitlin Sutton’s reflection:

This year for National Reconciliation Week, Jacq and I modified our plans around the snap lockdown into a remote style of communication. We sent out emails throughout the week to the whole school about National Sorry Day, the 1967 Referendum, Marngrook, Wurundjeri bush tucker, medicine and tools, the Royal Commission into Aboriginal deaths in custody, Climate Justice, First Nations Justice and Mabo Day. We also modified the NRW Assembly to a series of pre-recorded videos including Murrindindi conducting a welcome to country and playing the didgeridoo, an interview with Amelia Lemanis about her essay Why Australia need to engage in justice reinvestment to reduce Indigenous incarceration rates and help close the gap and Dr Reid introducing his new book Time We Started Listening. At the end of the week, we ran an asynchronous Kahoot about all the information shared throughout the week, with the winner receiving a Clothing the Gaps voucher. Congratulations to Angela Lui on winning the Kahoot!


Jacqueline De Mamiel reflection:

This year’s National Reconciliation Week theme was ‘More than a word. Reconciliation takes action.’ We recognised this theme by focusing on actions our school community can take to celebrate Indigenous culture and history. One of our Year 10 Texts and Traditions classes was involved in a ‘Telling Stories Through Art’ Zoom panel with Murrundindi and Andrew Stanner. Andrew Stanner is the son of William Stanner who was an anthropologist who worked extensively with Aboriginal communities in the Northern Territory. Andrew now owns his father’s large collection of Aboriginal art that was painted for him by an Aboriginal elder he worked with during his time in the Northern Territory. Andrew showed us these paintings and shared the meaning behind the symbols that represent the landscape. Murrundindi showed us artworks that have been passed down within his family. He shared his knowledge about the symbolism and patterns in these artworks and taught us about how stories are passed on in Wurundjeri culture. We are really grateful for Murrundindi and Andrew’s insight into this important part of Aboriginal history!

Georgia Biggs (Reconciliation Coordinator) and Caitlin Sutton & Jacqueline de Mamiel (Reconciliation Captains)

Virtual Work Experience

Work Experience is a vital part of the CGGS Career Education program in Year 10. It gives students an opportunity to work in a profession in which they are interested. It is designed to be exciting and informative, with experienced people offering insights into a number of different professions. After the lockdown earlier in the year, and uncertainty about future plans, CGGS decided to cancel the compulsory component of work experience. We decided to be flexible.

Students were offered the opportunity to still pursue a placement, dependent on finding a willing employer, and we were delighted when nearly one third of our Year 10 cohort showed remarkable initiative and organised some work experiences across a range of industries.

It was clear, however, that another arrangement would need to be explored to satisfy this important component of career education for our remaining students. CGGS therefore launched an innovative careers program – ‘CGGS Virtual Work Experience’; a digital program which is a touchpoint for our students to not only experience different industries, but to see these industries in action and to learn from their professionals.

And, of course, with best laid plans cast asunder with this recent lockdown, and a necessity to pivot once again – ALL our Year 10 students could now avail of this fantastic program. Our students completed four days of this novel program which included virtual tours, videos, podcasts, career timelines and more. Preview the program here.

Upon completion, students receive a certificate highlighting the industry task undergone, the skills they have developed and most importantly, they receive personal feedback on their work mapped to guidelines provided by industry. This will be an important accreditation to highlight on their resume and will form part of their e-portfolio development in Term 3.

89% of children go to their parents first for career advice, so it is crucial that parents have access to resources and guidance that will aid their children’s career decisions. Students were able to invite parents to see their career plans and the activities they completed along the way.

It is such a valuable program it has also been made available to our Year 11 students who were deprived of real-world work experiences in 2020.  Its success suggests that future work experiences may comprise both real world placements and virtual work experiences. 

Trish Dolan
Careers Counsellor

In Conversation with Murrundindi

On Friday 28 May the Year 8 teaching team hosted an ‘In Conversation’ session with Murrundindi, where the Year 8s and wider audience listened to his very personal and inspiring story. Murrundindi is the Ngurungaeta (Head Man) of the Wurundjeri people of the Kulin nation.

The event complemented the students’ current learning in English in which they are studying the verse novel Sister Heart by Sally Morgan.

Murrundindi outlined the challenges and hardships of growing up as an Indigenous Australian and leaving school young in order to take care of his family. He also told students of the important bonds, connection to country and kinship that are significant to Wurundjeri culture.

Murrundindi spoke with calm, as he disclosed that he was the last generation to be registered under the Plant and Animal Act of Australia. He also spoke about being referred to by derogatory terms, growing up as a 16-year-old on the verge of young adulthood and how he did not feel wanted in the community.

Murrundindi spoke at length about the importance of positive relationships and how he was fortunate to meet Maureen, his second wife. She readily accepted him and his culture and also helped him become literate in his mid 30s. It is because of this relationship that he now passionately teaches students about his culture across Wurundjeri land – in particular our students at CGGS.

Murrundindi likened this second chance to the ongoing process of reconciliation between Indigenous and non-Indigenous Australians.

His eyes lit up as he spoke about the deep respect he feels every time he visits CGGS. It was a privilege to listen to Murrundindi’s story. He has remained positive when faced with personal conflict and feels gratitude for second chances at developing and strengthening bonds with family.

Nirvana Watkins (Host of the Zoom session), Georgia Biggs (Editor), Chris Anton (Writer) and Year 8 English Teaching Team

Operations Management in Action

As part of their Unit 3 studies into Operations Management, students from the Business Management classes attended a practical learning experience in early May to the Yakult Factory in Dandenong. The individualised tour catered specifically to the study design and focussed on the vital components of the course including: technological developments, materials management, quality, and waste minimisation.

The experience was a unique opportunity to directly link the theoretical concepts presented in class with a practical and well-known international business. Students arrived at the state-of-the-art facility and were greeted by our tour educator. We were guided through the production process as we made our way around the viewing level, conveniently located above the factory floor. Students had the opportunity to learn about Yakult’s commitment to corporate social responsibility, as well as viewing the quality control processes from outside the purpose-built laboratory.

Once the tour had concluded, students had the opportunity to visit the education centre where they learnt about the history of the company and the evolution of their products including manufacturing techniques and commitment to sustainability in the future. The tour would not have been complete without a product tasting to conclude the experience. Thank you to Mrs Larkey for accompanying the classes and sharing her own business knowledge.

Alexandra Larkey
Head of Commerce

French Biographies

Year 10 French classes have been delving into the olden days in their studies this term, to learn more about the past tense in French. Adding a personal and authentic touch to their learning, students interviewed a member of their family to compile some key events in their lives in a carefully crafted biography

The results reveal the diversity of origins, experience and career paths of various generations, and the concluding sentences of love and gratitude will put a smile on the faces of parents and grand-parents who can read the French!

Miriam Hoffman and Tafadzwa Gwamba
French Teachers

Da Vinci Decathlon

The Da Vinci Decathlon is a team-based national competition which involves developing a range of skills through engagement in different challenges including Engineering, Art, Poetry, Codebreaking and Ideation. Students are required to work collaboratively in order to complete 10 complex challenges over the course of a day. This activity requires not only academic excellence, but more importantly, well-developed critical and creative thinking skills, the ability to work as a team, consider different points of view and persevere with difficult tasks. It is a competition which is academically challenging and one in which students are encouraged to enjoy the opportunity to work with like-minded peers and tackle different challenges.

Two Year 7 teams and one Year 8 team competed in the State Finals recently. The teams worked collaboratively to navigate the challenges as well as the technology as this year’s event was online. The teams were well organised, persevered when challenges arose and demonstrated strong critical thinking and creative skills. While none of the teams advanced to the National Finals, our Year 7 Team 2 came first in the Science challenge and third in the Engineering challenge. Congratulations to all of the students who participated. They were great ambassadors for Camberwell Girls.

Dr Charlotte Forwood
Director of Learning Design and Development

A Virtual Year 8 Statistics Investigation

This term, our Year 8 Mathematics students are using a virtual platform known as The Islands as a method of learning and applying Statistics and data. The Islands is a virtual human population created by Dr Michael Bulmer from the University of Queensland. Dr Bulmer’s desire was to construct an interface that would allow students to understand how information is objectively gathered and how statistical questions can be posed and answered to inform us about the world we live in.

Each member of the virtual human population (known as Islanders) is happy to perform tasks that would allow students understand more about them. Some of these virtual tasks involved asking the Islanders to exercise, eat, sleep or perform other tests. This investigation seemed the perfect way for students to gather and analyse data during our current lockdown, as they could ‘interview’ whole populations from home!

Each student in Year 8 designed a ‘before-and-after’ style question in which they were able to utilise the Islanders to ascertain an answer. The Year 8s created many insightful and analytical questions. Maya from 8B constructed an investigation to see if listening to heavy rock music affected an Islander’s concentration and Sienna from 8A wanted to explore if exercise influences an Islander’s ability to concentrate. Through tasks like these, it is our hope that the Year 8s are able to create connections between Mathematics and how it can be applied to solve real-life problems from areas like Sociology and Psychology.

Alistair Shaw and the Year 8 Maths Team

Senior School


Senior School

May 28, 2021

Celebrating Diversity Week has become a strong tradition at CGGS and it commenced on Monday 17 May with the outlining of a full program of student-led initiatives. Students and staff wore rainbow socks and wrote messages in chalk in the quadrangle. Tuesday’s Senior School Assembly heard from Ms Kath Woolcock – Deputy Head of Senior School, Student Wellbeing – on what Diversity Week means to her. Her speech is included here for parents to read.

The International Concert on Friday at lunchtime was a wonderful event, with 11 individual and group performances of cultural singing and dancing from students in Year 7 to Year 12. Please see a full summary of the week below. Many thanks and congratulations to our student leaders, Annaliese Cossenas – School Wellbeing Captain, Esther Chen and Carol Wei – International Captains, Cathy Gu – School Sports Captain and Harkee Judge

Year 7 and 10 immunisations were delivered on Friday of last week in BSH, administered by the nurses from the City of Boroondara. Students from both year levels were very mature in their response to these important vaccinations.

Wednesday was National Sorry Day and Reconciliation Week commenced yesterday, with activities planned by the Reconciliation Captains Caitlin Sutton and Jacqueline de Mamiel, working with Reconciliation Coordinator Ms Georgia Biggs. We look forward to sharing the ways in which this important week was recognised in the next CamNews.

The announcement from the Acting Premier yesterday morning of a 7-day lockdown has necessitated the postponement of our House Music event that was scheduled for this evening. I feel sure all our CGGS community agree that having a live event with students singing without masks is our aim. In order to honour the of many hours of dedicated rehearsal from all the students involved and in particular the excellent leadership of the House Music Captains, we are postponing the event until the final week of Term 2 at this stage and we will continue to monitor the COVID-19 restrictions and be flexible with our planning.

During Weeks 8 and 9 – Monday 7 June to Friday 18 June – House Music rehearsals will be put on hold as the students in Year 10 and 11 undertake their Semester One examinations.

I would like to take this opportunity to acknowledge and thank the following students and staff for their efforts to date:

Lawrence – Teagan Diep & Teresa Guo

Schofield – Sarah Hui & Janice Wong

Singleton – Nicole Chang & Chloe Law

Taylor – Megan Kuo & Kelly Liang


And also the House Technical Captains,

Lawrence – Anastasia Konstantinou & Jessica Leung

Schofield – Jane Pekin & Kelly Ta

Singleton – Chloe Chan & Charlotte Lindsay

Taylor – Natasha Mak & Lucy Van de Arend

The staff of both the Music and Drama Departments have also provided enormous support to the students and we thank them for the skills they have helped to develop in both our House leaders and the students of their Houses. The House teachers, Daniel Loff (Lawrence) Asia Kosowski (Schofield), Tom Clark (Singleton) and Christa Cook (Taylor) and Shane Maycock, Deputy Head of Senior School – Co-curricular Programs, have also provided great support and hours of supervision of rehearsals.

Have a lovely weekend.

Warm regards,

Cathy Poyser
Deputy Principal/Head of Senior School

Diversity Week

CGGS’s Celebrating Diversity Week is a highlight for students and staff, as we come together to acknowledge, learn, support and embrace the vast and wonderfully diverse community not only present within our school, but also within the wider community. As highlighted in the lead up to our celebrations, and again during the week, as an Anglican school we appreciate that every person is made in the image of God and we are committed to acknowledging and learning about our differences in terms of culture, race, religion, sexuality, gender and ability to ensure we are able to create a safe and inclusive communities for all.

To begin our week, we encouraged an understanding and appreciation of sexual and gender diversity by acknowledging the LGBTQIA+ community. Students and staff wore rainbow socks and, at lunchtime, our community came together to collaborate on an art project designed to show solidarity and an individual commitment to supporting everyone, no matter how they identify or who they love.

Tuesday focussed on educating our community about the history and significance of CGGS’ Celebrating Diversity Week. At the Senior School Assembly I, together with Annaliese Conessas (School Wellbeing Captain), Esther Chen and Carol Wei (International Culture Captains), shared personal reflections and I thank these students for their moving and personal stories. As part of this assembly, Zara Price announced the new CGGS Pride group, which was met with great support from the student body, with the first meeting being held the following week, on Monday 24 May.

Wednesday’s activities centred around ‘Religious Diversity’, where our Faith and Worship Captain Harkee Judge shared her reflections with the school community, including developing a series of educational posters that provided information on different faiths around the world. These were displayed across the school and sparked interest and discussion amongst students and staff.

On Thursday, Cathy Gu, School Sport Captain, hosted a student goalball exhibition match to celebrate ‘Diverse Ability Day’. Goalball is a professional sport designed specifically for athletes with visual impairments. The game consists of rolling a ball containing a bell into the opponent’s goal while the opposing players try to block the ball with their bodies. To ensure the game is fair for all competitors regardless of the degree of visual impairment, all players wear ‘blackout’ masks. We thank all students who contributed to this very exciting match!

To celebrate ‘Cultural Diversity Day’, International Captains Esther Chen and Carol Wei organised an International Day concert. The program included 11 acts where CGGS students proudly performed cultural songs and dances, showcasing a range of instruments and traditional clothes from all across the world. We thank and congratulate all students for their performances, in what was a very moving and memorable exhibition of not only the cultural diversity that exists within our community but also the extreme talent of our students.

There are many wonderful students and staff that contributed to our Celebrating Diversity Week and we are so grateful to the entire school community for supporting the initiative.

Kath Woolcock
Deputy Head of Senior School – Student Wellbeing

In-Conversation with Alumni Caitlin Kuo

CGGS student Megan Kuo is a member of the 11 English Language cohort. Her sister, 2020 alumni Caitlin Kuo, is studying Speech Pathology at Australian Catholic University. After observing many similarities in the content of Caitlin’s studies and the EL course, Caitlin joined the class for an intimate in conversation event hosted by English Language teacher Ms Biggs. The result was a fascinating conversation on the interdisciplinary nature of linguistics; psychology; biology and philosophy. Students asked thoughtful questions pertaining to their current Area of Study: Child Language Acquisition and Caitlin provided insightful commentary on her chosen career path, affirming the relevance of the students’ learning in a real-world context. Caitlin exclaimed that the English Language course closely mirrors the subject she is enrolled in, and this is a highly useful subject for those wanting to pursue a career in the allied health field. Similarities include a close study of the vocal tract of a child and adult, the phonological development of a child as well as the theories to explain child language acquisition (the nature vs nurture debate).

Reflecting on the event, many Year 11s commented on the useful advice and wisdom Caitlin was able to offer her former peers. Something that was particularly noteworthy, as observed by Year 11 student Nancy Huang, was that the event did not set out to be about careers advice, however many questions naturally arose about Caitlin’s experiences at university arose. This resulted in subsequent conversations about the positives as well as challenges of transitioning to university – a very different educational setting to a school. CGGS is so grateful to Caitlin for generously sharing her experiences and we look forward to more opportunities to connect in the future.

Georgia Biggs
English Teacher

GSV Preliminary Cross Country

Well done to all the students who participated in the participated in the GSV Preliminary Cross Country Carnival on Tuesday 18 May at Yarra Bend Park. In perfect weather conditions, it was great to see everyone display enthusiasm and positivity as they cheered on their peers throughout the race.

A credit to their fitness and training, the team put in a fantastic effort and everyone should be very proud of their performance on the day. Ribbons were awarded to the top 10 places and we were very excited to have our Year 7, student Anika Selvaratnam finish 10th in the Junior Race, with a time of 12.39 for 3km. We would also like to congratulate Bella Fary who ran a fabulous race and won convincingly in the Intermediate section with a time of 14.56 For 4km. Bella finished the day receiving her ribbon in a presentation by GSV and we are very proud of her performance. This result contributed to the overall intermediate score and, as a result, the team finished 3rd which is a great effort.

None of this success would have been possible without our dedicated coach Jo Bowden, who prepared our girls so well for this competition. Congratulations to all the girls who consistently attended training and we look forward to seeing you race again at the Championship Carnival when it’s held.

Intermediate Victorian College Basketball Championships

On Thursday 20 May, our Intermediate Basketball team competed in the Victorian College Basketball Championship at Nunawading Basketball Stadium. Our team’s performance was impressive against some strong sides from other schools around Victoria and we were very excited to qualify for the finals. Throughout the day, our team played 5 games, as well as watching other schools play, and practising on spare courts. The team we played in the finals was a fierce competitor and CGGS worked hard, showing great determination and teamwork. While we didn’t win the game, we were very proud to finish as the Runners Up in the competition and walked out with our heads held high. Thank you to old grammarian Emma Pearce (2016) for coaching our team and to Mr Maycock for his support on the day. We enjoyed a great day of basketball, and our team is looking forward to the next tournament in 2022!

Tara Rastogi and Issy Tremewen
Year 10

Big Weather

This Tuesday, the Year 8 cohort participated in a virtual excursion with the National Gallery of Victoria. This was a unique private session highlighting various artworks from the Big Weather exhibition, a collection revealing intimate and sophisticated understanding of Country, weather systems and ecologies that exists within Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultural knowledge. This exhibition featured diverse works representing the four Big Weather events: Thunder and Lightning, Country, Fire, Destruction and Regeneration and Wind from the NGV Indigenous Collection.

A couple of the Learning Objectives included describing how knowledge of the climate and landscape is represented through the art of diverse Indigenous communities and discussing the spiritual, economic, cultural and aesthetic value of land and water for people through Indigenous art.

Participation in this virtual excursion was a privilege and enabled the Year 8 students to gain a better understanding of our Indigenous communities as we celebrate Reconciliation Week.

Chris Anton
English Teacher

Year 11 Psychology Students – Putting theory into practice

Jean Piaget’s theory of cognitive development in children is used widely in school systems throughout the world today and in the development of curricula for children. His theory deals with the nature of knowledge itself and how humans gradually come to acquire, construct, and use it.

Year 11 Psychology students have just completed their studies on Piaget and were given the task of designing and then making a toy that would be suitable for children in the Pre-Operational Stage, ages 2 to 7 years and their emerging abilities.

The Maker Space was ideal for this task and our students produced toys that focused on Piaget’s key areas for this stage, these being – centration, egocentrism, pretend play, animism, seriation and conservation.

Our students visited Year 1 Ormiston students to have a play date with these toys.

A huge thank you to Mrs Columbine for allowing our study of Piaget’s theory to be put into practice.

Mrs Karin Lemanis & Ms Tuba Ozak
Psychology Teachers

Port of Melbourne

Over 7,000 shipping containers a day go through the Port of Melbourne and on the 20 May, CGGS Year 9 Geography classes also stopped in. Students experienced firsthand the scale of Australia’s largest container port, which handles one third of the country’s container trade and achieves a total trade value of $110 billion. A guided bus tour took students to see some of the highly efficient port operations. They were lucky enough to see containers being loaded onto a ship by a crane and marvel at the sheer volume of goods being moved; it only take two minutes to precisely load a container. Some students even used a ‘ship tracker’ app to determine the origins, destinations and cargo on the ships they passed. This fieldtrip built on classroom learning by allowing them to gain a sense of just how interconnected Melbourne is through trade at local, national and international scales.

For the remainder of the semester, students will continue to analyse Melbourne’s place in a globalised, exploring the injustices and opportunities presented by trade. They will also study examples of multinational companies, such as Apple and Nike, and consider their social, economic and environmental impacts (both positive and negative). Students will reflect on their place in the world and their role in these contexts and design a ‘shoe’ that represents and supports a cause that they believe in.

We hope that they will be inspired by the potential of the solutions and that it will continue to help them find their place as a globally responsible citizen.

Karoline Walter
Head of Geography

Images taken by Jennifer Sui.

Year 7 fieldwork – Glen Iris Wetlands

The Year 7 visit to Glen Iris Wetlands was the final fieldtrip for the term. The Geography Department and the students certainly have felt very excited and grateful to have been able to venture out and learn by seeing things in the ‘real world’. Fieldwork is an integral part of any Geography curriculum and, in this case, it allowed the students to learn more about the urban water cycle and the functions of wetlands. They are also continuing to gain a sense for how our everyday actions can help to protect the environment. For example, they have now seen the enormous size of some of the pipes that enter our waterways with often highly polluted stormwater and are recognising that ensuing our litter goes into rubbish bins means that it doesn’t end up in our oceans.

The focus on the day was a rotation through a series of four very hands-on learning activities, each designed to collect a different type of primary data. These included identifying water bugs and testing the pH and turbidity of the water to determine the health of the waterway, they completed field sketches to record their observations, they observed and learned about the water sensitive urban design features in the area and finally went on a nature walk to observe and record the biodiversity at the wetlands. The CGGS Drone also took flight to capture real-time footage of the state of the wetland.

All-in-all, it was a great success and an opportunity for students to be out in the field doing fantastic Geography! The Year 7s are now learning about another important part of the urban water cycle, the treatment of our sewage through a virtual tour of the Western Treatment Plant. Soon, they will write stories or cartoons to demonstrate their learning about the natural and urban water cycles.

Karoline Walter
Head of Geography

Senior School


Senior School

May 14, 2021

Our Founders Day Service at St Paul’s Cathedral on Wednesday 5 May enabled us to celebrate the school’s proud history and I take this opportunity to thank Rev. Helen Creed and all the other staff and students who were involved in making this such a special service. Two of the highlights of the service were hearing past student Rev. Amanda Lyon (2003) present a very tangible sermon on the theme of “With Grateful Hearts and Unafraid” and also the student reflections on the topic, “What does CGGS mean to me”. Year 12 student Charlotte Kutey read the reflection written by Mrs Roma Drummond OAM (Brunt, 1943), Emily Foo, Year 6, and her mother Selina Chan spoke, as well as School Council member The Venerable Greg Allinson and Year 12 student, Claire Robertson. I have attached part of Claire’s reflection in the button below.

Please see Rev Creed’s report of the service in the Connected Community Section of CamNews.

On Saturday 8 May, Mrs Dunwoody, Mr Burnell, Mr Mack, Mr Duniam and I had the pleasure of being invited guests to attend the Melbourne String Ensemble 2021 Concerto Concert at the Scots’ Church in the city. Year 11 student Emily Wu was the Cello soloist and it was such an honour to hear her play in her final performance as a member of the Melbourne String Ensemble.

Emily – who has toured Germany, the Czech Republic, Switzerland and Austria with the Melbourne String Ensemble, as well as being a member of the CGGS European Music Tour in 2017 – achieved her AMEB Licentiate Diploma (LMusA) in both Piano and Cello in 2020. On Saturday night, Emily performed Cello Concerto in E Minor, Op. 85.

Please read below for the article from Mr Mack and Ms Savige.

This week, Senior School students in Years 7 and 9 undertook NAPLAN testing over three days. Students completed assessments measuring their competency in numeracy and literacy skills and we were pleased with the way the students conducted themselves and completed the testing. The results of this testing will be shared with the school and families in August. While this testing is only a measurement of a student’s capacity at one moment in time, it is an additional useful measure to use in further tailoring learning needs for each student.

Have a lovely weekend.

Warm Regards,

Cathy Poyser
Deputy Principal / Head of Senior School

Science Talent Search

Last year, like all Year 8s, I participated in the Science Talent Search (STS). The topic was ‘oceans of the future’ and there were multiple different ways to participate and create your piece of work. I choose to complete the creative writing category. I loved this task as it allowed me to mix my curiosity for science with my love for writing. My story features a dystopian world of the future, in which humans are forced to live in giant man-made ecosystems, underwater. I would definitely encourage everyone to take advantage of this opportunity offered by CGGS.

Hannah Balkin
Year 9 Student

The Science Talent Search (STS) is an annual, science-based competition open to all primary and secondary students in Victoria. In 2020, the theme was ‘Deep Blue: Innovations for the future of oceans’. As part of the Science curriculum at CGGS, all Year 8 students complete their own project. Students could select from a range of competition sections including Games, Video Productions, Creative Writing and Posters. The top projects from each CGGS Year 8 class were selected to be entered into the competition. Hannah Balkin’s piece was entered into the competition and she received a major bursary for her creative writing piece ‘Oceans of the future’. Her work has recently been published in LabTalk (the professional journal for Victorian secondary Science Teachers) so her story will be shared far and wide around Victorian Science teachers. This is an amazing achievement and reflects Hannah’s hard work and creativity. I look forward to seeing some of our students’ entries for this year’s STS theme – ‘Food: Different by Design’.

Leanne O’Doherty
Hannah’s Science Teacher in 2020

Science of Well-being: Yale University

This week, a group of Year 12 students have commenced the Yale University course titled The Science of Well-being. The course was designed by Yale University to assist their students in learning about how to increase their happiness by investing in the things that scientifically have been shown to be effective.

The course covers many topics of what we believe will make us happy – money, higher grades, material possessions, body image, a good job, etc. As a cognitive scientist and Professor of Psychology, Dr Santos shows research about misconceptions in these areas, and then delves into the strategies and easy life choices we can make that are shown to boost happiness levels.

During Terms 2 and 3, our participating Year 12s will complete the qualification, and ultimately increase their own happiness. If you are interested in exploring this yourself, and would like to view the course material, please go to

Kirsten Shipsides
Science Teacher

Deadly Learning

Five Year 8 and 9 Indigenous students at CGGS collaborated to prepare a workshop they coined ‘Deadly Learning’. The sessions focussed on sharing with the Year 8 cohort the significance of symbols and storytelling for Aboriginal people. Year 8 students then had a chance to consider symbols that represent them and their life/interests/values and beliefs before planning and creating an artistic illustration as a final piece.

In the preparation stages, prior to delivering the workshops, the teachers created a vision board of symbols used in culture that have been passed down to them by family members and elders. These symbols were then explained thoughtfully during their presentation and relevant links were made between symbols, totems and dreaming stories. Commencing their presentation with an acknowledgement of country prior to introducing themselves, their totem and the tribal group they belong to was a fantastic way to open what was an engaging session.

The ‘Deadly Learning’ teachers showed incredible leadership throughout the day- the connection they have with their culture was nothing short of inspiring to witness. What a huge honour and privilege it is to have learnt from such a passionate group of young people. What was particularly impressive was their ability to interact and engage with the Year 8 students- they responded well to questions that students had, as well as followed up with clarifying questions to encourage Year 8s to carefully consider their artistic choices. They really were excellent teachers.

Georgia Biggs
Reconciliation Coordinator

Geography Excursion – Marysville

On Friday 7 May, the Year 11 Geography class travelled to Marysville, Victoria, to conduct an investigation into the impact of 2009 Black Saturday Bushfires and the responses since.

To gain a sense of the impact of the fires on the community, we first met with Mr. Barry Thomas, founder of the Black Saturday Museum. Barry first led us on a guided tour through the streets of Marysville, highlighting important local landmarks and re-builds along the way. Then, we explored the museum which is filled with photographs and artifacts collected by and items donated by the local community. Much of the footage is first-hand accounts of the fire and it was a truly moving experience for all involved.

We also took a short walk to Gallipoli Park, which was the main emergency evacuation site on Black Saturday and is located in the heart of the town. Here, we were able to see the structure of the town and its position in the natural environment. While at the park, we completed a vegetation transect and mapped the different features of the surrounding bushland. We were also very fortunate to hear from Ron Jones, of the Marysville CFA brigade, who spoke about the town’s ongoing recovery and the importance of fire preparedness.

Finally, we took a short walk to the top of the nearby Stevenson Falls. Here, students were delighted by the beautiful view over Marysville and the surrounding region. It was quite eye-opening to compare the recovering landscape today to the stark contrast of charred black images taken soon after the fires.

It was an insightful and truly splendid day of fieldwork. The Year 11 Geography students will now be busy writing fieldwork reports to present their findings and all they have learned.

Tom Clark & Karoline Walter
Geography Teachers

Chess Tournament Success

The Chess Club has been active at Camberwell Girls Grammar for the past 4 years. We meet weekly and have players from all year levels. Anyone interested in chess is welcome to attend. We have games and coaching with old grammarian Alanna Chew Lee, part of the team which placed second at the Victorian Girls Championships in 2018.

In 2020, a team placed 3rd in the state Finals in an online competition. This Championship Cup and individual medals were recently presented by Chess Victoria.

On 29 April, 7 students attended a Chess Victoria Open qualifying tournament at Camberwell Grammar School. Open tournaments field boys and girls from a variety of schools and this tournament included teams from the current open and girls National Championship schools.

The CGGS team achieved outstanding results placing 1st for Girls Schools and qualifying for the State Championship Finals – Open and Girls to be held later this year.

L – R Bethany Orme, Jessie Chen, Sophie Chang, Kelly Ta, Emily Lin, Angela Ding, Lucy Ciro. More photos attached.

Jessie Chen – Year 8

Angela Ding – Year 8

Lucy Ciro – Year 8 – 2020 3rd Place Victorian Girls Championship team and qualifier State Championships 2021.

Bethany Orme – Year 11 – 2020 3rd Place Victorian Girls Championship team and qualifier State Championships 2021.

Kelly Ta – Year 11 – 2020 3rd Place Victorian Girls Championship team and qualifier State Championships 2021.

Sophie Chang – Year 9 – 2020 3rd Place Victorian Girls Championship team and qualifier State Championships 2021, 3rd place overall at qualifying tournament 2021.

Emily Lin – Year 11 2020 3rd Place Victorian Girls Championship team and qualifier State Championships 2021, Top girl at qualifying tournament 2021.

The team is going into a self-designed training program and some more tournament practice next term, in preparation for the State Finals. This involves practising openings, mid-game and checks.

Thank you to Ms Stevens for photos and support (cheerleading) and Mr Maycock for transport and assistance with logistics.

Helen Pappas
Chess Coach

Watch Week

During Week 3, the CGGS community committed to #watchtheirimpact during Watch Week. SEA, our 2021 School Captains, decided to raise funds for Impact for Women – an organisation that supports women and children who are victims of domestic violence.

The week started with a SEA of red flowing through the school, with the students wearing red to show their support of this organisation and act as “Impact Champs”. In the words of Kathy Kaplan OAM, the colour red is invigorating and intimidating, symbolising many things. It denotes power, excitement, passion and determination. It can motivate us, but also frighten us. Red captures attention. On this red-dress day, we raised $787 which will go directly to Impact for Women.

On Thursday, we headed down to the kitchen to cook up a storm of brownies and muffins, in preparation for our bake sale on Friday. A special thank you to Mrs Goad, Rev Creed, Ms Walter and Dr Forwood for assisting us in this endeavour. On Friday, they ‘sold like a treat’ and the additional $497.90 raised at this bake sale will also head Impact for Women. Students also contributed to making a paper chain, in solidarity for women who have experienced this abuse, as well a positive chalk drawing in the quadrangle.

We acknowledge that, while we can do things like bake sales or writing with chalk in the quadrangle, the ongoing issues related domestic abuse and violence are much bigger than that and will continue to require work for society to change. We hope that this week helped to make students more aware of their impact, and that Watch Week was only just a slight contribution that can be made to help those who may feel alone, or in need. We would like to thank the Service Learning Captains, Eloise and Amelia and CGGS community for all of the help for Watch Week.

Sophia Giagoudakis, Eloise Webster and Ashley Olsen (SEA)
School Captains

1800 Respect Number, 1800 737 732.

GSV Representative Swimming

Year 9 student Emily Price was selected in the GSV Representative Swim Team that competed on Monday 10 May against the best of the best at the Victorian All Schools Competition. Emily represented GSV in three events and did remarkedly well. In the 14-15 years 4 X 50m Medley Relay, Emily placed 1st.  In the 14-15 years 4 X 50 Breaststroke Relay, Emily’s team placed 3rd and Emily broke the 36 second barrier for the first time in her leg of the race. Finally, in the 14-15 years 4 X 50m Individual Breaststroke, Emily place 5th. CGGS and CGGS Aquatics are so proud of Emily, who is having a sensational year thus far. She has achieved further success in the pool as follows:

> Qualified and competed for the first time at the 2021 Australian Age Championships

> Placed 3rd in the 2021 Victorian Sprint Championships – 15 years, 50m Breaststroke

> Placed 2nd in the 2021 GSV Finals night – 15 years Breaststroke

Peter Kitney
CGGS Aquatic

Emily Wu performs solo with the Melbourne String Ensemble

Emily Wu (11B) was the star performer in a concert that was given by the Melbourne String Ensemble on Saturday 8 of May, in the Werner Brodbeck Hall at the Scots’ Church on Collins Street.

Emily played the 1st movement of the Edward Elgar cello concerto superbly as a featured soloist, as well as other works by Barber, Saint-Saens, Klengel and Arensky as a member of the Melbourne String Ensemble.

The Melbourne String Ensemble is a group of string orchestras comprising of students aged 8-18 and has been one of the leading student string orchestras in Australia for over 25 years. It is well known for its high standard of playing, beauty of expression and musically-informed performances. Emily has been a member of MSE for seven years, and this was her farewell concert. Another connection that CGGS has with MSE is that Margaret Butcher (violin tutor at CGGS) is the Musical Director of the Junior Melbourne String Ensemble, who also played on the night.

It was a fantastic event which was generously supported by CGGS staff and students, where Emily was a leading light in the musical community of Melbourne.

Rohan Mack and Kate Savige
Directors of Music

End Mandatory Detention

On Wednesday May 5, a small group of Year 10 – 12 students travelled to the city to attend the End Mandatory Detention Centres Student Walkout. The walkout was held by RISE, an organisation run and governed by refugees, asylum seekers and ex-detainees. We saw the walkout as an important opportunity to stand in solidarity with marginalised refugee communities and raise awareness surrounding human rights issues on Australia’s shores.Many students from the group had to leave early to attend the Founders’ Day Service at St Paul’s Cathedral. However, we appreciated the opportunity to attend it was inspiring to see the bravery of these refugees. They put themselves at risk by publicly speaking out against the government in order to fight for the rights of all detainees.

To learn more on the issue and to find out how to support this movement, I recommend visiting their website:

Isabel Varughese
Year 12

Upskill …BY DESIGN – Year 8

The Year 8s most recent Upskill …By Design day was an action packed one. Linked to their Service Learning focus, the students moved around several immersive and interactive sessions to learn more about our Australian Indigenous culture. The students explored sport and play, language, art and storytelling. We were honoured to have special guests share with us. Murrundindi taught the students about Boomerang throwing and CGGS Year 8 and 9 indigenous students and MITS alumni ran a session called ‘Deadly Learning’ sharing the totems of their communities as well as symbols used in art and storytelling. Ms Stevens shared her passion for sport and taught the students about the game, Marngrook and Dr Rittey shared her passion for language, focusing on the significance of language and the students made signs to put around the school in Woiwurrung language. A great highlight of the day was seeing Sammi throw and catch a boomerang!

Head of Service Learning
Jennifer Gordon

I really enjoyed the storytelling session that was run by the Year 9s last week! It was great to learn about different symbols that the indigenous Australians used to draw when creating Dreamtime stories. I learnt the unique symbols for man, woman, lizard tracks, rain, turtle and other interesting drawings. The Year 9s helping us were amazing teachers and I had fun making up my own story using these symbols!

Sabrina Bignold – Year 8

Last Tuesday, we had a Beyond Design day in which we learnt about Indigenous Australian culture. One of the sessions we undertook was the Marngrook session which is a sport many Indigenous Australian people play. The game involves a ball made of a skinned possum and you couldn’t communicate with your voice so we had to clap to catch people’s attention. I really enjoyed playing the sport and what I found interesting was how many AFL rules have been adapted from the sport Marngrook.

Amanda Lee – Year 8

I really enjoyed this session! It was very interesting to learn about Indigenous Australian’s culture through language. One of my favourite words I learnt was ‘Wominjeka’ which means welcome.

Rachel Tan – Year 8

On Tuesday 4 May, I had the pleasure of participating in a boomerang session with Murrindindi as our teacher. I was so lucky to have the privilege to learn about the different types of boomerangs that are used for different purposes, and even got to look at boomerangs that Murrindindi’s ancestors had made. When it came time to try them, Murrindindi taught us how to properly hold and throw the boomerang, and with much enthusiasm encouraged us to all give it a go. When it came to the boomerang finals, a few of us tried our luck with catching the boomerang. I remember Murrindindi cheering all of us on, and when I was able to catch it, I remember how excited he was. I am very grateful to have had the opportunity to learn about Murrindindi’s culture and traditions and I had so much fun doing so!

Sammi Chua – Year 8

Senior School


Senior School

April 30, 2021

It has been a wonderful first two weeks of Term 2. This edition of CamNews will enable you to enjoy the highlights and achievements of our students, which I feel sure you have already been following on our Social Media channels.

Last week in our first assembly for Term 2 we held our annual ANZAC Assembly, and I was honoured to speak to all our Senior School students. The ANZAC Assembly is where we acknowledge with gratitude the sacrifices made by the men and women who served Australia and New Zealand in the wars of the past. Initially the day was to pay thanks to those who fought in World War 1 and then later for those who have served in all wars and operations.

The values of the ANZAC’s included courage, mateship, fairness, persistence, integrity, humour, initiative, endurance, determination, ingenuity, respect, and selflessness. These qualities were at the time, when Australia was a newly federated country, very important as they gave our ancestors hope and set the tone for a fledgling country.

And we see these values and qualities as equally important in Australia in 2021 when as a country we stand together to fight fires, floods, cyclones and most recently the pandemic.

A number of the Camberwell Girls staff and students have relatives currently serving in the Australian Defence Force. We took the opportunity at our ANZAC Assembly to express our pride in their chosen career, and give thanks to them for their peace keeping efforts and for the work they do around the world to keep us all safe, and ensure the freedoms we all enjoy in Australia are maintained.

The speeches presented at this Assembly by three students, Siena Yap, Salome Obeyesekere and Salwa Saiba are attached in the button below for you to read.

This past fortnight we have also enjoyed the Centenary Book Launch, the VCE Theatre Studies performance of Picnic at Hanging Rock, House Cross Country, Year 8 Wellbeing and Year 9 Artificial Intelligence conferences. Please enjoy reading the summaries of each of these events below and I thank the students and staff for their contributions to making these events so successful.

Warm regards,

Cathy Poyser
Deputy Principal / Head of Senior School

VCE Theatre Studies – Picnic at Hanging Rock

Last week we had the great pleasure of welcoming an audience back to our school to support the Year 12 Theatre Studies students in their performance of, Picnic at Hanging Rock. This adaptation by Tom Wright, from Joan Lindsay’s haunting novel, was the chosen script for their Unit 3, Outcome 1 SAC. Students chose two areas of production to interpret the script through and engaged with the theatrical styles of Australian Gothic, Absurdism, Comedy of Manners and Classicism. Throughout the term, students met with Industry mentors to expand their skill sets and notion of what was possible. A suitably thrilling and chilling atmosphere was produced, and we congratulate the students on their massive undertaking.

Amelia Lemanis: Co-Director and Set Design

Sabrina Renzi: Co-Director and Actor

Simar Kaur: Lighting Design and Actor

Charlotte Kutey: Sound Design and Actor

Millie Winkett: Prop Design and Actor

Shannon Yeung: Costume Design and Actor

Click to expand the photos below to view the girls fantastic hard work.

Keira Lyons
Head of Drama

Year 7 Ancient Australia History Incursion

As part of their study of Ancient History, Year 7 students participated in an Ancient Australia Incursion with Murrundindi. This event saw students take on the role of archaeologists and museum curators, focusing on particular artefacts from the past and considering what these reveal about the people who created and used them. Below are the reflections of some students.

Maggie Wighton
History Teacher and Sustainability Coordinator

Late last month we had a very special incursion for History. We were able to meet Murrundindi and handle museum-grade artefacts. This was arranged for our unit on Ancient Australia, so we could have hands on experience. Some of these items were thousands of years old. In this incursion we got the chance to make conclusions based on each object answering these questions: 

> Who do you think used this object?

> What do you think it was used for?

> How old might this object be?

My favourite part of this incursion was when we made conclusions on the objects, based on their appearance. It was very interesting to gauge how close we were and see how old the object was. The most important piece of information I learnt was how each object told a story of the people who used it and their life-style.

Anais, 7W

When we first entered Robinson Hall we were astounded by the incredible amount of artefacts that lined the tables. As we settled into our seats and found our way to our tables Ms Wighton introduced us to Murrundindi who shared with us a brief history about his ancestors and the way they lived on their country. Soon after, we got into pairs and went to pick out an artefact.  My partner Grace and I had our attention drawn by a snake carved out of wood, dark brown in colour and patterned with scorch marks.  At first we thought it was made made to commemorate someone’s pet snake, however, as we were racking our brains trying to find a more possible reason as to why the snake was made, Murrundindi came to our rescue and explained to us that the snake was used in ceremonies and as a way to represent Mindi, who is the second created and Bunjil’s brother. All the pieces of the puzzle seemed to connect as Grace and I realised the reason the snake was made. Later on we presented our item and explained why it was made. Whilst the entire incursion was both intriguing and informative, my favourite part was learning about everyone’s items and getting to know more about the way Aboriginal tribes lived in Ancient Australia.

Isuli, 7W

At the end of Term 1 , Murrundindi came to visit us and exposed us to a wide range of artefacts that were once used by Aboriginals. The task was to partner up with someone and choose an artefact to study. We also got to touch and weigh the object. My favourite part of the event was when I got to choose any type of artefact I wanted to study as there were a variety of artefacts to choose from. I chose the Stone Axe Head as I thought it looked interesting because it had a sharp edge which really interest me as I had never seen a rock shaped like that. I found out that Stone Axe Head was used to cut wood because back then they didn’t have chainsaws to cut wood. The most important thing I learned and I feel that other people should also know is that the main difference between what Aboriginals use and what we use is that they use nature to help them out and we mainly use mechanics. Overall, this was a great incursion as I got to explore many objects.

Sahana, 7W

Snorkelling in Port Phillip Bay!

How tranquil, to feel the gentle wind in your hair and sea spray on your face as your wetsuit dries from a day snorkelling with wonderous ocean life. This is exactly how I felt after the school STEAM captains, Aleen and myself, accompanied by Chelsea were invited on the Year 10 Marine excursion on Friday the 26th of March. We ventured on board a boat captained by Tori departing from the Sorrento pier. We were first fitted with wetsuits, snorkels and fins on the pier. Snorkelling instructions then occurred on the boat itself as we sailed over the sea, eager to see what we could see, see, see.

Our first stop was Chinaman’s Hat, and we were greeted by its residents – brown seals seemingly waving their flippers at us as they cooled off in the ocean. On the hut itself, some were snoozing in the sun or barking raucously, fighting for the best places like seagulls over chips. We geared up and slid into the icy water for a closer look, catching a huge manta ray and multiple playful seals on video. It was a good thing that we were warned not to stray too close to the hut, since the seals enjoyed rolling off the sides with a heavy splash!

Next, we were taken to an area closer to shore, where there were rusty chains anchoring small boats. We were fortunate to find one of my favourite marine creatures, the elusive weedy sea dragon! Diving down, we were also given the opportunity to peer underneath a rock shelf and spy on multitudes of tiny fish. Afterwards, we relaxed on the boat as the crew scoured Port Phillip Bay for grey dorsal fins. Alas, the tides had moved the food locations and dolphins were nowhere to be found.

We would like to formally express our appreciation to Tori and the boat crew, as well as to Dr Mason for inviting us on this amazing marine excursion. It was an experience that I shall treasure like pirates’ gold and I look forward to the next time I set sail for Science.

Bethany Orme
Year 11

Soul Siblings Initiative

On Monday 26 April 2021, SEA (Sophia, Eloise and Ashley) commenced an initiative titled “Soul Siblings”. Inspired by the previous “Big Sister Little Sister” program, the activity interconnects the Year 7s and the Year 9s by placing them in pairs and engaging the girls in fun and interactive activities. SEA know as students commence high school, it is important for them to feel more included and settled in their Senior School Community. As a result, Soul Siblings offers students the confidence to get more involved in their school life!

For the first activity, the “siblings” headed out into the Woodstock courtyard for collaborative games such as jenga, table tennis, gaga or just discussion. It was lovely observing the students getting involved and establishing their inter-level relationships. In the long term, SEA aspires that the Year 7s and 9s form meaningful connections that they will sustain until the end of their schooling.

Our next Soul Siblings activity is coming up in a few weeks and given the initial success we can’t wait to SEA what comes next!

Sophia Giagoudakis, Eloise Webster and Ashley Olsen

Music Camp

We are very grateful to have emerged from a year of lockdowns, remote learning and on-line music-making. Our shared experiences in 2020 have been a strong indicator of how music provides an outlet for our emotions, human connection and supports well-being. Our 2021 Music Camp at Mount Eliza was a triumphant success, as we were able to collaborate together as a CGGS music community and celebrate how blessed we are to have live music in our lives.

Many creative hearts and hands came together throughout the weekend to learn new repertoire and refine performance skills. The Year 7-12 student musicians worked alongside our dedicated Music staff (and additional CGGS teaching staff) having fun in rehearsals and other organised activities. The traditional quiz night hosted by School Music Captains Zara Price and Zara Mammone was a highlight of the camp, with enthusiastic cross-age participation and a close result at the end of the evening.

The student-led ANZAC Day Ceremony took place in the open-air chapel at Camp Manyung after breakfast on Sunday morning. It provided all of us with the opportunity to reflect on the service and sacrifices made by the members of the Australian Defence Forces and to consider how fortunate we are. The Music Camp concluded with final preparations for the Centenary Founders’ Service. All singers and instrumentalists came together to rehearse our School Anthem. They are looking forward to performing this beautiful music in St. Paul’s Cathedral next week.

The ability to connect with others, through the love of music, is a key strength in which our musicians shine. We look forward to sharing the high quality work produced at Music Camp with all of the CGGS community in our calendar of music events. Many thanks to the teaching staff who attended and supported us with their kindness, good humour and care. A special thank you also to the helpful group of students and parents who assisted us with unpacking the music equipment from the truck when we returned to school.

Kate Savige and Rohan Mack
Directors of Music

Music Camp was an amazing experience for anyone who enjoys making music. It was a great way to interact with students in other year levels who share similar interests. The trivia night on Saturday is always a highlight and was so entertaining: wearing costumes based on a theme (this year’s was animated characters), answering music-based trivia and more. It was especially incredible hearing the school’s new anthem for the first time with both the choir and orchestra. Music Camp helped build a sense of community throughout the whole school by connecting students from different ensembles.

Stephanie – Year 10

I had the BEST time at music camp! I really enjoyed practising songs and having more time to focus on our beautiful School Anthem. I can’t wait to go again!

Olive – Year 8

Music camp was so fun and I am so grateful I had the opportunity to go. Rehearsals were helpful and enjoyable and I made many friends in other year levels. Trivia and movie night were a blast and everyone got involved. The teachers organised fun rehearsals and I am so thankful for their help and encouragement. Overall, this was one of my many highlights of year 7 and I can’t wait to go in years to come.

Phoebe – Year 7

Music camp was an excellent opportunity to learn new pieces of music and finesse current repertoire. Singing the school anthem’s descant line with the orchestra for the upcoming Founders’ Service was particularly memorable, while quiz night and the people I met on the camp made it an incredibly enjoyable experience.

Salome – Year 10

I learned how to hold my own part while playing in the band, which is something I never really got to consolidate before the  Music Camp. One of the things I really enjoyed was the quiz night, as all the questions were really fun and I got to talk to students in other year levels. The camp was a fun way to get to know people and to really consolidate the pieces we’ve been practising. I would definitely recommend going! 

Nonie – Year 8

What I enjoyed at music camp was that I got to meet new people from different year levels, as well as strengthen friendships and overcome fears. I learnt to have more faith in myself and just give it a go. The teachers there were really encouraging and helped everyone learn a lot, but have fun at the same time.

Angelique – Year 7

On music camp I enjoyed being able to sing with my friends and classmates. I also enjoyed getting to know students in younger year levels better, as well as the games night. Something I learnt was how to sing with an orchestra in addition to the piano accompaniment, as that was a new experience for me.

Lily – Year 10

I really enjoyed music camp this year, especially going to rehearsals with my friends and learning the School Anthem. I can’t wait to go again next year!

Audrey – Year 8

This year was my first music camp, and it was a lot of fun. I especially enjoyed walking down to the beach on the Saturday afternoon, and the animated character themed dress up night! I also loved learning how to play lots of new pieces during the band rehearsals. 

Disha – Year 8


“As more and more artificial intelligence is entering into the world, more and more emotional intelligence must enter into leadership.” – Amit Ray

We were rapt to be able to undertake our first of three bespoke seasonal learning experiences with our Year 9s on the first two days of Term 2. Artificial Intelligence (AI) is all around us but rarely do we stop and consider how pervasive and influential it is in our daily lives. Our Year 9 Summit: AI & Wicked Problems, prompted Year 9 students to do just this. From an initial immersion, exploration, gathering and evaluation of everything AI, students then embarked on a design thinking hack linked to the United Nation’s 17 Sustainable Development Goals. The Day Two design thinking process saw students work through the five stages of design, empathy, definition, ideation, protoyping and testing, sprinting through the creative process in collaborative groups as they worked in service to solve a wicked problem using technology.

It was fantastic to welcome Psychologist and Researcher Ryan Kelly, of the University of Melbourne, to discuss ‘Biometric Mirror’ a research project that uses AI to detect and display people’s personality traits and physical attractiveness based solely on a photo of their face.

This system investigates a person’s understanding of AI and their response to the information about their unique traits that the mirror projects. The research project explores the ethical concerns linked to this technology around consent, data storage and algorithmic bias. As the provocation on our first day, Ryan’s presentation offered an insight into the complexity of using technology such as AI, and the potential real-world consequences of algorithmic bias and assumptions, even when people are driven by the best intentions. So, AI may help to solve some of the biggest challenges that we face, but what wicked problems does it raise?

From here, the Year 9s took a deep dive into the ways that AI is being used in positive ways to address all sorts of problems. From global citizen science which is being used by NASA to classify coral reefs to Woebot, an AI powered mental health chat bot, AI was explored in its multiple forms, helping to plant seeds of opportunity to help solve some of the world’s big problems. Employing their graphic recording skills, honed on an earlier Upskill BY DESIGN opportunity with Think In Colour, students collaborated as turning these complex ideas into clarifying visuals for later reference.

Enabling students to be immersed in the AI information space was a necessary beginning, as was providing the chance for low stakes play. Quick design hacks to create chariots for Sphero robots to deliver precious cargo, re-purposing laser printer offcuts into freestanding animals to hold micro:bits and designing avatars using Tinkercad, completed the first day’s activities.

Day 2 was all about design, taking the knowledge and understanding gained on the first day and turning this into action. CGGS is fortunate to have Summer Howarth, founder of Eventful Learning as a strategic partner and as the students embarked on their design sprints, Summer shared her experiences in working across not only education but industry and community partners too, in designing solutions to wicked problems. An emphasis was placed on the importance of clear communication in the design process, as students worked collaboratively to turn their theories into action to address some of the global challenges we face, including poverty, inequality, climate change, environmental degradation, peace and justice.

The students’ final idea pitches, made to their peers were brilliant to see, as was the way feedback which was generously given and humbly received. We congratulate all of our students on a fantastic two day summit and look forward to seeing them continue to design their way into the future, on behalf of others and themselves. Based on some of the reflections our students have shared, we’re pretty sure that the future of AI use looks safe and bright.

A big thankyou to our teacher co-designers of the AI & Wicked Problems Summit, Mr Wilkins, Mrs Wood, Dr Forwood, Mr Maycock and Ms Biggs. It was great to have you on board and your contributions are enormously appreciated.

Finally to Year 9 students, Sophie and Hayley, thanks for sharing your reflections:

These past two days have been a blur of excitement and new things. A.I was never really a topic that I had never considered deeply, but after some initial thought-provoking questions, we were asked and the deep discussions we had with each other, I’m now interested in an industry filled with opportunities. The way that A.I was showcased in the presentations by our guest speaker, Ryan Kelly, from the University of Melbourne made me realise just how influential A.I is in our lives. By the time we had finished our big first day of learning about this relatively new topic, our minds were brimming with information and we needed a way to put it all down. The second day was a perfect way to do this. We learned about the process of design and the ways it helps us in everyday problem-solving. With these new skills, we were able to formulate our own ideas on how to solve the UNDP’s Sustainable Development Goals, proving that AI can be humanity’s future as well as my own. – Sophie

On Tuesday the 20th of April and Wednesday the 21st of April, we, the year 9s, took part in a conference focussing on ‘Wicked Problems and AI.’ On Tuesday, we were introduced to the world of AI and how it’s used for the better and for the worse.  Guest speaker, psychologist and researcher Ryan Kelly from the University of Melbourne, spoke and gave an insight into their research project ‘biometric mirror’. He discussed the ethics of this project and how AI must be considered from an ethical perspective. On Wednesday, we were given goals to research and form initiatives and solutions to from the UN’s 17 Sustainability Goals. We had to think hard and go through all the stages of coming up with an idea, using design thinking. Overall, this conference gave us an insight into how AI can be used to improve problems in the world, and what challenges also come with that. We learnt to use our critical thinking skills and collaborate with others. – Hayley 

“Creativity is the power to reject the past, to change the status quo and to seek new potential. Simply put, aside from using one’s imagination – perhaps more importantly – creativity is the power to act.” – Ai Weiwei

Kate Manners
Head of Strategic Initiatives

Year 8 Wellbeing Day

On Wednesday 21 April our Year 8 Students took part in a purposefully designed Year 8 Wellbeing Day which centred on providing students with proactive and personalised healthy thinking skills and strategies to equip them to develop resilient and courageous mindsets. Across the day, students participated in a series of workshops which were carefully curated by the wellbeing team to respond to emergent trends in issues facing students of this age group and centred on the Year 8 Wellbeing theme of ‘Self-Discovery.

Challenge & Initiative Games

Year 8 Students spent the morning engaging in a range of quirky, creative and challenging competitive games including ‘Pipe Run’, ‘Square Jump’, ‘Weave It’ and ‘Tower Stack’, which were designed to connect, energise and provide opportunities for students to work with their peers on activities that required communication, collaboration, leadership and other essential transferable skills.

Body Image in the Digital World

The second session was delivered by experts from the Butterfly Foundation, an organisation that supports the promotion of healthy body image in young people. The presentation provided practical strategies to support body confidence, empowering our students to reach out for help and prompted discussion and critical thinking about the role social media plays in body image of young people. The session also enabled the students to create personal boundaries and challenge the cultural norms that are portrayed on social media and explored the collective power that young people have in changing the narrative.

Challenging our Thinking

Led by the Year Level Coordinator, Paige Tan, this workshop explored thinking patterns, including helpful and helpful thinking, and provided students with strategies to overcome their inner critic. Students were also introduced to the four zones of regulation, which has helped to kickstart their personal development and self-awareness journeys.

Ribbon of Strength

The final session of the day included a focus on the collective strength of the Year 8 cohort, exploring the power that each student has in making informed decisions about where they focus their attention and how they support themselves and their peers. In recognising the diversity that exists and committing to embracing this, each student made a ‘Friendship’ bracelet for one of their peers as symbol of their support and solidarity.

As part of the Year 8 Wellbeing curriculum for Term 2, students and their teachers will continue to explore these themes, looking closely at the problems with perfectionism, the power of failure and the skills that we develop in the process. In Term 3, we will hold our second Year 8 Wellbeing Day in which we will work closely with the organisation ‘Flourish Girl’.

Year 8 Testimonials

I think this whole day was amazing it really taught me a lot.”

I think it was a really fun day in general and I’m looking forward to the next one 🙂 and I think the messages were really important and relevant to high school students specifically, because in high school especially you start to criticise yourself a lot.“I thought the overall day was great! I think we are really lucky as a school to be able to have these days where we can reflect on ourselves and how we can improve!”

“It was awesome that we used the day to meaningfully look over and learn about Well-being. The activities were super fun and engaging.”

Kath Woolcock, Deputy Head of Senior School – Student Wellbeing & Paige Tan, Year 8 Coordinator

GSV Inter Softball Finals – Term 1

On Wednesday 31 March, the Inter Softball A-Grade team (pictured below) competed in the GSV Inter Softball Finals at Waverley Softball Grounds in Jells Park. The team had trained hard and showed great skills throughout the season to, once again, go through the home-and-away season undefeated. As a result, they finished top of their zone, were presented with the Zone 1 Winners Pennant and qualified for the Finals competition. This was their third appearance in A-Grade finals in the past 4 years – a tremendous achievement!

CGGS were drawn to play against Sacre Coeur in the Semi-Final – the same opponents from the 2019 season when CGGS went on to win the A-Grade title. It was a keenly fought contest with both teams playing at a high level, but after 3 innings, Sacre Coeur came out on top and progressed through to the Grand Final. Whilst the result wasn’t what we had wanted, the team should be very proud of their efforts. They showed courage and determination in challenging conditions with several girls playing out of their normal positions due to illness on match day, and we are proud of the CGGS spirit that they displayed throughout the season.

We look forward to following their continued success next season as they strive to reach their third Grand Final in the GSV A-Grade Softball competition.

Inter A-Grade Team

Amy Ding

Sasha Feldmann

Isabella Georges

Jessica Lim

Lille Osborne

Ella Summers

Isabella Tremewen

Grace Barnes

Liana Robinson

Jessica Terlikar

Coaches: Liza Stevens & Nareen Robinson