From the Head of School
Mrs Erica Thomas

From the Head of School image

This week we welcome many new students as well as students who are about to transition to new stages of their educational journey. The first Kindergarten 2016 orientation day occurs on Thursday. Year 4 found many interesting things on the Hill Campus and met teachers and new students as they had a good look around yesterday. Year 6 students meet all the new students going into Year 7 on Friday and get their first taste of high school. Excitement mixed with some nervousness is always evident no matter the age. The School is pleased to be able to offer these opportunities this term and I am hopeful that all of these students leave us feeling confident about the year ahead.  >Click here to see  a short film produced by our current Year 5 to welcome them.

Congratulations to our students who competed in the HRIS Chess Tournament last week. Two teams achieved first place in their divisions and the following students in Years 4 and 6 should be extremely proud of their efforts: Jett Robinson, Egan Griffiths, Lachlan Carey, Carter Everett, Alexander Macdougall, Kalen Routley, Hayden Martinelli and Sebastian Spencer.

Newcastle Grammar School’s Rowing Regatta was held at Berry Park on Saturday. I thank our parents who are involved in ‘Friends of Rowing’ and the wider parent group for their support of this most worthwhile event. Our students were involved in numerous races and in tight finishes both the boys and girls Eights were winners.

I am delighted to announce that the School has appointed a new Deputy Principal who will begin in 2016. Mr Alan Parsons comes to us from The Southport School in Queensland where he has been Deputy for 10 years. Mr Parsons has a strong reputation in student welfare and social justice and is looking forward to making a significant contribution to Newcastle Grammar School.

From the Director of Learning and Teaching
Mrs Lisa Peterson

From the Director of Learning and Teaching image

Year 7, 2016 Orientation Day

Our Year 7, 2016 Orientation Day will be held on Friday, 30 October. The day will commence at 8.35am in Horbury Hunt Hall with a welcome from the Head of School. Students will then complete a range of activities to assist with the transition to High School. We are also holding a Parent Information Session at 8.40am to introduce parents to the structure and procedures for Stage 4, and provide an opportunity to ask questions in preparation for 2016.

Year 9 (2016) Subject Selections

Following the initial subject selection process after the Year 8 Parent/Student evening in September, elective courses were placed into Lines (Groups of Subjects) from the students’ priority list. It is pleasing to note that almost all students were successful in being able to obtain their first two priority choices.

This now concludes the selection process for Year 8. Please feel free to contact the Dean of Studies if you require clarification on any of the above matters. Students wishing to change their selections from this point forward must make an appointment with Mr Filby or Mrs Peterson to discuss course selections and class availability.

Year 10 Yearly Examination Timetable & Examination Rules

Year 10 students will commence their Yearly Examinations on Monday, 2 November. Please see below links for Examination Timetable and Examination Rules.  Notes giving permission for students to leave school following exams need to be returned to Mrs McGowan by Friday, 30 October.

Please >click here for the Examination Timetable

Please >click here for the Examination Rules

+ More

From the Director of Wellbeing
Ms Lynne Walker

From the Director of Wellbeing image

The Butterfly Foundation is an organisation whose vision and mission is to live in a world that celebrates health, well-being and diversity. It is dedicated to bringing about change to culture, policy and practice in the prevention, treatment and support of those affected by eating disorders and negative body image. Butterfly provides support for Australians who suffer from eating disorders and negative body image issues and their carers.

The Butterfly Foundation will be making a presentation to Year 10 on Thursday, 26 November as part of the Year 10 Empowerment programme.

The Butterfly Foundation has partnered with a fabulous new Australian film Now Add Honey. This delightful comedy embeds key messages around body dissatisfaction and the social pressures to adhere to the ‘thin ideal’ above all other values we hold as individuals. Humour highlights important themes such as self- esteem and body image and surviving and triumphing through dysfunctional families.

Our older students in Years 10 – 12 have been offered an opportunity to win tickets for themselves and 3 friends.

The film is released on Nov 5 nationally by Roadshow.

+ More

From the Head of Park Campus
Mrs Alicha Dyer

Benefits of a Positive Mindset

Over the years I have mentioned how it is far more common for us to learn through setbacks rather than successes. Research has shown that our emotional responses are biased toward correcting our mistakes, rather than recognising what went well. Our students will quite often focus on went wrong rather than celebrate the positive elements that have occurred during the course of the day.

The work of Seligman and Fredrickson has examined extensively the affirming affect on our emotional and physical well-being when we look to engage more fully with our Positive Emotions like love, joy, hope and awe. Linking with these emotions has been shown to make us more optimistic and open minded while also improving physical well-being through the reduction of negative (stress) hormones. I think it is important to constantly remind ourselves and our children that having a Positive Mindset, despite challenges that we may face, affords all of us a greater opportunity for physical and emotional success. It is a matter of finding the moments of gratitude and grace in every moment – they are always there.

I would urge everyone this week to try and ‘catch the moments of positivity’ that exist each day. We have so much about which to be grateful. We should take the time to find those moments and, equally as important, take the time to thank those people that made those moments special for us. By resisting the Negativity Bias we not only enrich our own well-being, but we might just give the person we thank a lift that allows them to improve their outlook as well.

+ More

Director of Pre-school
Ms Angela Tapp

It was another big week at Pre-school as we hurtle towards the end of the year. It only seems like yesterday that we were meeting this year’s families at our Information Night, and on Wednesday night we met the parents of our Shakers and Groovers for 2016. Some we were meeting for the first time and others were returning with siblings who seemed so young when they used to accompany older brothers and sisters just a year or so ago. The night went very well and we are looking forward to getting to meet the children at our Pre-school Play Mornings next month.

We have been introducing more structured ‘big school’ work during indoor activities as children are getting keen to learn how to read, write and even do a bit of addition. Meanwhile, it has been interesting to see a bit of a gender divide during outside play. The girls have been enjoying the dolls that have been set up with a bath, rubber duckie, potty and quite an extensive mix ‘n’match wardrobe. So you can only imagine how clean and well-dressed the dolls are by the end of the morning. At the same time, the boys have been fascinated by the bright orange stink bugs that have taken over our citrus tree. The bug catchers are in demand and the odour of the stink bugs is such an interesting spring smell. Having said that, there are also some girls who enjoy hunting bugs as well as boys who bath and dress the dolls.

The sand pit area is generally more of a gender mixing pot, although the ‘games’ are often different. This week a lot of the boys were making cement – possibly inspired by the building activities that have started again next door – while the girls were cooking and making food and coffee for the sandpit café. It is always interesting to observe children and the games they play.

Next week the first of the four planned Kinder Orientation sessions commence and we look forward to discussing the children’s experiences over coming weeks.

1534 - PS

+ More

Head of Co-curricular
Mrs Corey Rowntree

Head of Co-curricular image


Oxbridge Academic programs
The academic summer programs in Oxford, Cambridge, St Andrews, Paris, Montpellier, Barcelona, Salamanca, Los Angeles, New York and Harvard are now out. These summer schools run during the mid semester break of 2016. Any student interested to find out more please see the flyer attached or go to the following website.

Please >click here to view more information


From the Director of Music Performance
Mr Kevin Young

From the Director of Music Performance image

Music Scholarship Recital

The final Scholars Recital for 2015 was held last night in the Arts Space. Once again, it was wonderful to hear the developing musical abilities of our students. We are fortunate to have such a talented group of young musicians in our Music Scholars programme.

Chamber Choir Sings Up a Storm

Yesterday, choir members from Year 9 and Year 11 paid a visit to Prime Timers at the Salvation Army Hamilton. This is a group for retired people as well as senior citizens. The choir presented a 45 minute programme and delighted the audience with their diverse range of repertoire and blend of voices. Thank you to the choir for all the joy you bring to people both in and around our community. Well done.

Brass RaZoo and Bamboozle Fundraiser

This year, this great night of entertainment will be held at Merewether Bowling Club on Friday, 30 October commencing at 7.00pm. Please come along and support these brilliant young musicians. Tickets are now on sale at the >Flexischools website.

An Afternoon at the Proms 2015

This wonderful event will be held on Sunday, 22 November in the Sandi Warren Performance Centre. Once again, our guest conductor for the event will be Mr George Ellis. The afternoon will now commence at 5.00pm which is a change from the staring time in the 2015 School Calendar. Please note the time change.

Brass RaZoo Auditions for 2016

Earlier this week we had the privilege of listening to several students audition for Brass RaZoo next year. It was great to sit back and listen to them all perform. Thanks to all who participated and to Mr Sherringham for his work with Brass RaZoo. My thanks to Elizabeth Sebastian, Sam Roy, Ben Boyle and Alex Young, our very talented rhythm section who accompanied all of the musicians.

Year 6 Instrumental Performance

Thanks to Mr Sherringham and all students in Year 6 who performed so well at the assemblies yesterday in front of our new Year 5 students and their parents. This was a great showcase for the School and you should all be very pleased with your efforts.

George Ellis Visits NGS

 This Thursday, our Symphony Orchestra will have an extended rehearsal till 6pm with Mr Ellis. This is in preparation for the PROMS Concert next month at which Mr Ellis is once again, our guest conductor.  Members are reminded that the rehearsal runs until 6.00pm.

Cocktails and Music 

On Saturday, 7 November, parents are invited to attend a Cocktail and Music event to be held at the Newcastle Club from 6.00pm to 8.30pm. Tickets are $90 and will be available from Hill Campus Reception. This is a fundraiser for Singapore and will be a great night featuring entertainment by the Music staff and Senior Music students.

Music Rehearsal Day 25 November

 This year’s rehearsals for Speech Day and the Carol Service will be held on Wednesday, 25 November. Students in Symphony Orchestra, Concert Band, Grammarphones and Chamber Choir are involved in sessions throughout the day. The schedule for the day has been loaded to all groups on MBC and sent by email. Please check the schedule carefully.

Term 4 Dates

Friday, 30 October: Brass RaZoo and Bamboozle Dinner Dance 7.00pm at Merewether Bowling Club.
Saturday, 7 November: Cocktail Party at the Newcastle Club – 6.00pm to 8.00pm.
Sunday, 22 November: An Afternoon at the Proms  5.00pm SWPC  *** time change.
Saturday, 28 November: 6.00pm Christ Church Cathedral  NGS Carol Service.
Tuesday, 1 December: Speech Day Rehearsals.
Wednesday, 2 December: Speech Day.
Thursday, 3 December: Tour Rehearsal Day (Schedule to be emailed).
Friday, 4 December: Final Morning rehearsals finishing at midday.
Sunday, 6 December: Depart for Singapore.

Singapore Rehearsals… not many to go!

All students must attend all rehearsals in Term 4. Students involved in the tour are reminded to check the rehearsal schedule as each ensemble is only rehearsing a few times prior to the tour. As such, you are asked to attend all the rehearsals in which you are involved.

29 October: Symphony Orchestra Only, 3.30pm to 6.00pm – Proms Rehearsal (Arts Space)
30 October: Choir, 3.30pm to 5.00pm (Arts Space)
19 November: Concert Orchestra, 5.30pm to 7.00pm (Arts Space)
20 November: Concert & Symphony Orchestra, 3.30pm to 6.00pm – Proms Rehearsal (SWPC)
22 November: Concert Orchestra & Choir, 3.00pm Proms (SWPC)
23 November: Rehearsal day for Carols & Speech Day, Separate Schedule – TBA
6 December: Tour Commences

+ More

From the Director of Sport
Mr Leigh Carroll

From the Director of Sport image


4th Annual NGS Regatta

Thanks to all those that made the 4th Annual NGS Regatta the wonderful success it was! Beautiful day, fantastic and gutsy racing and lots of supporters, we couldn’t have asked for much more!

Thank you to the lovely Year 11 Students, Jess, Cassidy, Tom S, Niamh, Tom C and Olivia for giving up their Saturday to assist with Medal presentations and selling raffle tickets, your assistance was greatly appreciated by the rowing team.

Thank you also to the Friends of NGS Rowing Group and all the parent volunteers for helping the day run smoothly and raising funds for the programme!

Thank you to the coaching team for their efforts all day and staying back to pack everything up – also to Connor McDonald and Alex Oakley for their massive efforts helping pack up on Saturday!

Well done to all rowers, NGS dominated our home regatta winning 27 races out of 52, Congratulations! Congratulations to our Men’s and Women’s Eight Crews who both were victorious in the Feature Races of the regatta. Both Races were extremely tight with a nail biting finish which saw only a few strokes between Newcastle University and NGS in the closing metres of the races.

In the Men’s 8+ we were very proud to boat 2 crews in what we believe would be a first for NGS.

NGS was very successful from senior level through to under 15’s which our year 8 students flew the flag and came home with numerous wins in too.

Finally thankyou to Endeavour, HVGS and Newcastle Uni Rowing Clubs for allowing us to utilize the Berry Park Rowing Club and to our Sponsors for supporting the regatta.

1534-rowing 4

Victorious NGS Girls 8+

1534-rowing 1

NGS edge ahead of Newcastle Uni in the final 50 Metres of the Men’s Open 8+

1534-rowing 3

A proud moment – 2 NGS Boys 8+ Crews (Winners pictured above, 3rd Place getters pictured below) Both crews sporting pink socks as National Breast Cancer Awarness week Kicks off.

1534-rowing 2

HVGS Regatta

On Sunday, Year 7-9 rowers backed up for the HVGS Regatta where our team managed another 15 wins from 40 races. Well done!

It was a big weekend of racing, with all crews doing their best and racing hard, I look forward to seeing the performances at the upcoming Independent Schools Championships on 22 November 2015.

Upcoming Dates

Saturday, 7 November: Loreto Normanhurst Regatta, SIRC – Penrith. All Girls and Selected Boys
Sunday, 8 November: NUBC Regatta, Berry Park. Boys not attending Loreto
Sunday, 22 November: ISRA Championships, SIRC – Penrith. All Rowers 7-11. This is one of our most important regattas of the season. Students or Parents are to notify me immediately if you/ your child is not available for this regatta.

Thank you to our Sponsors

We would like to thank the following Sponsors for their generosity:

>Click here for list of Raffle Sponsors

>Click here for list of Rowers Sponsors

New Hockey players having a ball

On Wednesday, 14 and 21 October, students from Years 5-10 were given the opportunity to participate in a Hockey ‘Come & Try’ experience. As part of this very exciting event, students were given the opportunity to sample Hockey under the expertise of a HockeyNSW coach, prior to making their co-curricular selections.

1534 - Hockey

The students so far have enjoyed learning the basics skills and playing games to fine tune their ability.

Weekly coaching will continue for the next few weeks: Wednesday, 28 October, 4 and 11 November at Newcastle Grammar School Courts, from  7.00am – 8.00am.

Any student interested in attending (who has not signed up as yet) can come see Miss Joliffe for details.

HRIS U/15s and Open Touch Gala Day

The HRIS Secondary Touch Gala will be played at Tomaree Sports Complex Salamander Bay: Opens – Thursday, 5 November.

Any boy or girl who would like to play at this Touch Gala Day are asked to place their names down with Miss Byrnes in the PDHPE Department.

Ms C Byrnes – Stewart Sports Coordinator.

Co-curricular Summer Touch 

The NGS magical Moustaches and the NGS Sugar babes both had draws in their matches in the U14 Girls competition on Tuesday night. Coach Lucy Judd praised the high standard of skills displayed by all members of her team as they played out a 1 – 1 all draw.

All games will be played on Melbourne Cup Day. Please see below.

Round 5 – Tuesday, 3 November 2015
8 Girls: NGS Divas, 4.15pm – Aimee Hill
8 Boys: NGS Roosters, 3.45pm – Mr Daly/Miss Aimee Kerr
10 Girls: NGS Swifts, 5.15pm – Miss Natasha Robards
10 Boys: NGS Power Pugs, 5.15pm – Ms Byrnes
10 Boys: NGS Marshalls, 5.45pm – Mr Newling
12 Girls: NGS Seals, 6.15pm – Ms Byrnes
12 Girls: NGS Lightning, 6.15pm – Mrs Bright
12 Boys: NGS Buttercups, 6.45pm – Mr Joe Ryan
12 Boys: NGS Bolts, 6.45pm – Mr Daniel Abulfia
14 Girls: NGS Magical Moustaches, 7.15pm – Miss Lucy Judd
14 Girls: NGS Sugar Babes, 7.15pm – Ms Byrnes
14 Boys: NGS Skinny Baboons, 8.15pm – Mr Stevens

Ms C Byrnes – MIC Touch

HRIS Chess
Mrs Simone Muddle

HRIS Chess Victory!

On Friday, 23 October, twenty students travelled to Avondale to compete in the HRIS Chess Tournament. For some, it was their first real experience at a Swiss style competition. For others, it was a matter of defending their 2014 HRIS championship title. NGS was well represented by two teams in the Junior Division and three teams in the Open Division. All students played extremely well on the day in some very close games. Our representatives should be very proud of their efforts, conduct and sportsmanship on the day. They were indeed fine ambassadors for the sport and the School.

1534 - Chess 1

Junior division – NGS A: Alexander Macdougall (board 1), Kalen Routley (board 2), Hayden Martinelli (board 3) and Sebastian Spencer (board 4). NGS B: Oscar Bush (board 1), Alexander Koshy (board 2), Connor Johansen (board 3) and David Hillard (board 4).

In the Open Division, NGS A was defending their 2014 victory: Jett Robinson (board 1), Egan Griffiths (board 2), Lachlan Carey (board 3) Carter Everett (board 4). NGS B: Lily Webster (board 1), Lieke Schot (board 2), Rhett Boden (board 3), Lucas Bortolotto (board 4). NGS C: Gabriel Jeffery (board 1), Cameron Carson (board 2), Cameron Bruce-Scott (board 3), Josephine Armstrong (board 4).

1534 - Chess 2

It was an extremely competitive competition. Our A teams in both divisions established a clear lead and were able to hold on to those leads until the end. Both our Junior A and Open A teams were victorious and took out their divisions. I wish to extend my congratulations to all players.

Mrs S Muddle

1534 - Chess 3

1534 - Chess 4

1534 - Chess 5

1534 - Chess 6

+ More

Brass Razoo & Bamboozle
Dinner Dance

1532 - BrassRazooDD_2015

Art Exhibition – ‘fleeting’
Mrs Tonia Martin

Art Exhibition – ‘fleeting’

The Visual Arts Department and all elective Visual Arts students are currently preparing for the annual exhibition of student artworks and we are very pleased to announce that the Visual Arts students will be supported by the Music Scholarship students for this event.

The NGS Piano Trios and Quadrarro String Quartet will be performing on the Opening Night.

This is our one opportunity to highlight the outstanding achievements of our young artists within the Newcastle Grammar School community. Artworks have been produced during the students’ artmaking lessons and within the guidelines of the Visual Arts syllabus.

All elective Visual Arts students are represented in the exhibition. They have worked tirelessly during 2015 to produce works which are engaging, informed and well executed. All works are conceptually strong and highlight the technical capabilities of students from Years 9, 10 and 11.

When selecting a name for this year’s Student Exhibition the practice of artmaking was analysed and considered – students are encouraged to research, explore, interpret, analyse and discover. To do this successfully they undertake a journey – a journey that can take them in many directions, a journey that can change direction, evolve and expand. They must consider the concept and ideas behind their artmaking – how they are going to communicate with the audience, the impact their work will have on the viewer, how their artmaking can touch others.


passing swiftly; vanishing quickly; transient; transitory; primarily temporal sense; indicating or being or seeming to be limited in duration

fleeting beauty; a fleeting glance

The students’ ideas may take a long time to develop or they may be quite fleeting – something they pass over very quickly only to return to and investigate further. Our opportunity to engage with their work is fleeting – the exhibition is over before we realise. The academic year vanishes quickly – we see the fleeting beauty around us and often only give it a fleeting glance.

We warmly invite all families and friends to attend the Opening of the Exhibition on Friday evening 30 October at 6.00pm in the Holland Staff Common Room, Holland Building, Hill Campus. Your support of the students would be greatly appreciated.

The exhibition is also be open for viewing on Saturday, 31 October and Sunday, 1 November between 11.00am and 3.00pm.

+ More

Cyber Safety Seminar
Presentation to Parents

1532 - Susan McLean Parent flyer 2015

Subscribe to eNews

The Blog
By the Head of School

Maths Club
Every Thursday Lunchtime

We all know that Maths is the most important subject in the whole universe. So why do many students find it so daunting? Because… They haven’t joined the Maths Club! Maths is an essential part of everyday life, and it stems into most university degrees and careers. Not only that, but it can be an enjoyable and engaging experience which requires students to collaborate and solve problems will be enjoyed together.

Maths Club will be available to students in Years 5 to 8 in the library every Thursday lunch from this week. Many fun games will be played and there are prizes to be won! We hope to see you there!

Smart Phone App

The new NGS App is now connected to the NGS website and should allow you to read events in the calendar, alerts and the newsletter in a format that should prove more convenient.  It can be downloaded from the >Apple Store or >Google Play.

Uniform Shop
Hours for 2015

The Uniform shop hours are as follows.

Monday: 8.00am – 2.00pm
Wednesday & Friday: 10.00am – 4.00pm

Canteen Duties

Hill Campus

Mon 2 November:
Louise Phillips

Tue 3 November:
Jacquelene Doran

Wed 4 November:
Sue Clark
Kerrie Kerr

Thu 5 November:
Marnie Coulton

Fri 6 November:

Park Campus

Mon 2 November:
Emily Macdonald

Tue 3 November:
Alette Schot

Wed 4 November:
Lisa Griffiths

Thu 5 November:
Farrah Lance
Lisa Reynolds

Fri 6 November:
Marie Williamson
Nerida Gray

Cyber Safety Seminar
Susan McLean

Newcastle Grammar School is delighted to host a complimentary Cyber Safety Seminar on Monday, 16 November at 6.00pm in the Horbury Hunt Hall.

Telephone Reception to reserve your seat on Ph: 4929 5811.
>Click here to view the poster of information

Visual Arts

1533 - Art Exhibition Poster 2015

TAS Showcase
Mr Rob Barter

TAS Showcase – Friday, 30 October

Family and friends are invited to attend the annual TAS Showcase that will be held Friday, 30 October from 9.00am until 6.30pm.

Student works will be on display from Year 7 -11 in the areas of Technology, Food Technology, Information Software Technology, Industrial Technology, Information Processes Technology and Design and Technology.

The showcase will be held in the Holland Building, Hill Campus.