From the Head of the School
Mrs Erica Thomas

From the Head of the School image

Over the weekend, the Chamber Choir participated in the Open Choral and Sacred Choral sections of the Sydney Eisteddfod at Chatswood. I congratulate and thank Mr Young and Mr Power for their work with this choir. The students should be pleased with the growing maturity of their voices and their development as a choir. The Winter Concert on Thursday features musical items from across the School and will be a celebration of the depth of Music in the School – there is a wonderfully fun opening item from Kindergarten that is not to be missed!

Students in Visual Arts and Design have also been working hard. >Click here to see some examples of Year 5 Cubist inspired work and Year 9 ‘Investigations of our natural world’.

In other enrichment activities this week, our Mock Trial team successfully prosecuted a reckless driving charge against Belmont Christian College. Talented Science students in Year 8 participated in the Build a Future Day with the Science and Engineering Faculty at Newcastle University. The SATU had fun abseiling and developing bush craft skills on Sunday at the Watagans National Park.

Next week, the McKensey Building located at 51 Newcomen Street (that houses some of our administrative and business staff) will be publically marketed for sale. Following my arrival at Newcastle Grammar late last year, my immediate vision included returning the administration of the School back onto the Hill Campus to be closer to the educational heart of the School. The movement of staff has progressively occurred since Term 4 last year and the remaining move will complete the consolidation process. This move will be positive in many ways for the School and the sale of building will lead immediate reinvestment back into both School campuses. The Building will be marketed by Raine & Horne with an auction occurring on 4 July 2015. From 15 June, direct enquiries to the Business Office can be made via the Berkeley Building at the Hill Campus on the corner of Newcomen and Church Streets.

From the Director of Learning & Teaching
Mrs Lisa Peterson

From the Director of Learning & Teaching image

Half-Yearly Reports

Half-Yearly reports for students in Years 5 – 10 will be emailed home by the end of the Term. Year 7 reports will be sent on Friday, 12 June with the Parent/Teacher evening scheduled for Tuesday, 16 June. All other Parent/Teacher Evenings will take place early in Term 3.

As examination papers are returned, I would encourage students to take the opportunity to review their work and reflect on their learning process to assist them to improve in the future.

From the Director of Operations
Mr Duncan McKensey

Year 5-6 Father & Son Camp

It is with great pleasure that Newcastle Grammar School is endorsing the Years 5 –  6 Father & Son Camp, from 9 – 12 October 2015. A parent of the School, Mrs Justine Clark  is coordinating the camp. If you are interested in participating please contact her on


From the Head of Park Campus
Mrs Alicha Dyer

Small children begin life intensely curious about everything and they express their curiosity with questions—enough questions to wear out even the most dedicated parent! “What makes the car work?” “Why is the sky blue?” “Where do the possums sleep at night?” As Primary School teachers we need to continue to focus on facilitating curiosity into our learning environment.

Curiosity is the quest for new ideas and information. Students who are curious aren’t satisfied with what they already know or have figured out. They go after what they don’t know or can’t understand—and that missing information can become a driving need to find out.

Curiosity is powered by questions. As adults it is important we encourage our children to want to find the answers, to pursue the missing information, to find or figure out what they don’t know. That’s a quest that culminates with a satisfied smile and a commitment to other questions and more learning.

Curiosity makes learning so much fun!


The Music Winter Concert will be held next Thursday, 4 June in the SWPC.

The concert starts at 6.00pm, students are requested to be in the Music Room by 5.30pm.  Students are to wear full School Uniform including blazers.

Tickets are $5 and will be available at the door. Please make sure you stay and support all the Students. There is an interval and if you leave early we would appreciate you doing this at this time – not during performances.

There will be no soccer or netball training on this day.

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From the Director of Pre-school
Mrs Angela Tapp

We have had another very exciting week at pre-school – not only with the anticipation of the Fire Station visits this week (which we will report on next week) but also with the unveiling of our new trampoline. A huge ‘shout out’ goes to Mr Ryan for assembling it. As you can imagine it is an extremely popular outdoor activity and it hasn’t taken the children long to master, not only the jumping on the trampoline, but the rules that go with it. The children line up to wait for their turn (only one person at a time), knowing that if they leave the line for more than a couple of minutes their position is forfeited; they know they need to remove their shoes – so most of them put their shoes into their respective baskets even before they line up; then, while waiting their turn they count to 20 so that the person on the trampoline has 20 jumps before giving the next person a turn. Many children are already competently counting to 20 so, to make the task more challenging, the number is gradually increasing. We love the fact that they are so focussed on counting to a higher number that they haven’t worked out it gives the person on the trampoline a much longer turn. The fact that the line is almost as long as a ride at The Newcastle Show doesn’t seem to bother the children at all. The children have been very patient and extremely encouraging of those that are having their turn. We have had one child that can do front flips and one child who had never been on a trampoline before!

So our new trampoline is seeing the children meeting learning outcomes. They are becoming aware of fairness, resourcing their own learning by connecting with other children and are interacting verbally with those children for a range of purposes. While they are doing all this learning, they are also having fun!

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From the Head of Co-curricular
Mrs Corey Rowntree

From the Head of Co-curricular image


>Click here to find further information on the variety of events coming up that you may be interested in attending:

– Competitions & Surveys

– Course & Insititution Information Sessions for Students & Parents

– Courses & Workshops for Students

– Open Days

– Expos & Forums

– Scholarships

– Jobs & Career Opportunities for Students

– Resources for Students

– New Courses

– Other News

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From the Director of Music Performance
Mr Kevin Young

From the Director of Music Performance image

Chamber Choir at Sydney Eisteddfod

Congratulations to all members of the Chamber Choir who had a successful competition last Saturday night at the Sydney Eisteddfod. The choir performed two songs in the Open Choir Section and the Open Sacred Section. The competition was tough with the choir competing against several adult choirs. However, I am pleased to say we held our own once again. The blending of the choir is starting to develop and this was one of the many positive comments from the adjudicator. NGS Chamber Choir were awarded a Third Place in the Sacred Section.

My thanks to Mr Power and Celine St George for their accompanying and to Michael Sebastian for his beautiful solo in Fare Thee Well. There were quite a few ex members of the choir, parents and grandparents who attended. Thanks also to Mrs Thomas for coming along and listening to us as well.

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Music Faculty Winter Concert

This Thursday is our Winter Concert and you are all invited. Please read the instructions below.

Thursday after School
Students in the Stewart Strings (5-8) Concert Band and the Symphony Orchestra will be taken by bus to SWPC. The bus will depart at 3.20 pm and will make two trips. Students in the Concert Band need to be on the first bus.

All groups will rehearse at SWPC. This will finish around 4.30 to 4.45pm. Students can be picked up by parents or remain in the hall where they will be supervised. I suggest you bring something to eat and drink with you as only students in Years 11 & 12 will be permitted to leave the site.

The Concert
– The Concert will commence at 6.00pm.
– All students in Years 5 – 12 are to sit in the designated area while waiting to perform in your group and return there after your performance.
– Students will be directed by staff when to leave the hall to prepare for your performance.
– No students are permitted back stage unless they are in the stage crew or moving on and off the stage.
– Tickets at the door. The cost of entry for non-performers is $5.
– The doors will not open until 5.30pm.
– Interval will take place at approximately 7.15pm.
– The concert will finish around 8.30pm.
– Dress is full winter school uniform with blazers please.


Extended Orchestra Rehearsal

On Thursday, 11 June, Symphony Orchestra rehearsal will be extended to 6.00pm. Mr George Ellis, a familiar face to most of us, will be here to lead us in the rehearsal. All orchestra members are asked to organize themselves to stay the extra hour.


HIRS Cultural Festival 2015

Permission notes are now due for this annual event to be held on 29 July at Hunter Valley Grammar School. Students can nominate their preferred ensemble on the nomination form which is available from your ensemble director. Students have a wide range of activities they can support including, string orchestra, concert band, wind orchestra, choirs and dance groups. Buses will transport NGS students to HVGS and there is a concert at 6pm on the same evening that parents and friends are invited to attend. Parents will be responsible for their children’s transport home.


Brass RaZoo at the Presentation Ball

Brass RaZoo are rehearsing to support this year’s Presentation Ball. This event will take place on Saturday,  13 June. Times are to be advised but you will need to wear your formal gear. Students in the group are asked to be at City Hall by 7.30pm please. Year 11 members of Bras RaZoo should come and speak to me regarding their involvement on the night.


From the Director of Music Performance

Every year thousands of school students begin an instrument through their school’s music programme.  One or two years later, more than 50% of students quit.

>Click here several reasons why children quit their musical instrument and ways to combat this.


Term 2 Music Events

Thursday, 4 June: Winter Concert 6.00pm SWPC

Thursday, 11 June: Extended Orchestra Rehearsal with Mr George Ellis

Saturday, 13 June: Brass RaZoo at the Presentation Ball

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NGS Book Club Meeting
Hill Campus Students

On Thursday, 4 June at lunchtime, NGS Book club will be meeting in the Margaret Mitchell Room in the Library. Ms Bright and I have lots of ideas for the club, and I’d love for people to join us and help decide its direction. Our aim is to foster a love of reading in students, and for those who already love reading to have a creative outlet for student discussion. I hope to see any students interested there on Thursday Week 7A.

Beatrice Wardhaugh – Year 12 Student


Australian Red Cross
Donate Blood

This year, as a school community, we have been supporting the Australian Red Cross Blood Service through organising and encouraging students and teachers to give up an hour of their time to donate blood and truly make a difference to the life of others. The simple act of donating saves three lives, and every donation counts as currently 1 in 3 people will need blood at some time during their life, yet only 1 in 30 people donate.

We would now like to extend an invitation to parents/caregivers and all members of the school community.

So how can you donate?

Simply click on this link, fill in your details and book a time!

To donate as part of the school all you need to do is sign up as part of the ‘Newcastle Grammar School’ Red25 group at this link,, or let the kind staff at the donor centre know you are donating as part of our school group and they will help you.


Lauren Merritt and Toby Noon

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Nexus 17
Creating Community Connections


On Friday evening, 15 May, members of the School community, the John Hunter Hospital community and the Visual Arts community of Newcastle gathered in Holland Staff Common Room for the opening of the annual Nexus Exhibition.

It was a wonderful night filled with amazing artworks, champagne and wine, and delicious canapés supplied by our generous sponsor Cranky Chef Catering.

As many of you would be aware the funds raised at the exhibition enables the School to make a generous donation to the Nexus Unit – the adolescent mental health unit at John Hunter Hospital to provide much needed items for the young people that are in need of the support of the unit, and are aslo used within the Visual Arts Department at NGS. The Nexus Committee would like to thank all members of the Newcastle community and the artists who so generously supported the exhibition this year.

The NGS Nexus Committee achieves a great sense of satisfaction from the annual exhibition and from knowing that in a small way we are assisting young people in our community who are experiencing difficulties with mental health.

Personally I would like to thank Louise Ross, Kerrie Coles, Laura Wilson, Lea Rugg, and Louise Melbourne who so generously gave their time and expertise to the Nexus Exhibition this year.

Congratulations to Mrs J Owers who was the winner of this year’s raffle prize – ‘Field of Flowers’, ink on canvas; so generously donated by artist Donna Buck.

Thank you to Mrs S Mackay who coordinated a group of Year 9 students who assisted on the evening with the selling of raffle tickets and the serving of canapés. Thank you to Paige Peterson, Lucinda Watt, Genevieve Greer, Elizabeth Duffy, Kate Hackett, Emerson Lees, Bronte Anscombe, and Solveigh Gusse, they were keen and enthusiastic ambassadors for Newcastle Grammar School.

On Wednesday morning, 20 May a morning tea was held to offer an alternate viewing time for the Nexus exhibition. Once again thank you to Mrs S Mackay who, with the assistance of Year 11 Hospitality students, prepared and served both sweet and savoury treats. Special mention to Eliza McGowan and Rhiannon Harvey for their time and effort in supporting this event.

Mrs T Martin – Coordinator of Creative and Performing Arts

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Farkwa Day - Hill Campus
Jambo Everyone

Newcastle Grammar School has liaised with World Vision to assist with the provision of facilities and educational resources to the Farkwa community in Tanzania for several years. This programme has been extremely successful with Newcastle Grammar School contributing to the provision of two fresh water wells, a girl’s dormitory and extensive educational resources.

To celebrate the success of this community programme, a Farkwa Day will be held on Hill Campus on 12 June 2015. The aim is to model some of the day on a typical Farkwa School Day as well as giving students a taste of Africa and raising some money for a final contribution to the community through World Vision connections.

Students have been given the programme for the day which details all activities. It would be appreciated if the permission note could be returned to mentor teachers by Friday, 5 June 2015 to facilitate catering. Parents and friends are welcome to participate in the Farkwa Walk.

Thanks must go to the Newcastle Grammar School Community for their support of the Farkwa Project and the activities planned for Farkwa Day will be both rewarding and enjoyable.

The Farkwa Committee

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Year 8 Science & Engineering Challenge


Get a Grip, Puff Puff Car and Get over It were three of the challenges presented to our Year 8 Students when they participated in the ‘Build a Future Day’ hosted by the Science and Engineering Faculty at Newcastle University. Our students applied creativity and ingenuity to use everyday items to create a bionic hand that could manipulate small objects, build a car that was engineered to fit perfectly into a small garage propelled only by a balloon and constructed the only bridge that survived the super weight model car that travelled over it. Our team also observed a Laser Light Show, used computer graphics to design a simple robot and navigated coordinates on a simulated building site to investigate physical forces used in construction.

The day was a great success. It allowed students to experience Science outside the classroom and to apply their knowledge to a range of areas modelling real life situations. As a bonus our students won third place competing against 5 other schools. Congratulations to all students involved.

1518 - Year 8 5 1518 - Year 8 4 1518 - Year 8 3 1518 - Year 8 1

Mrs R Chamberlain

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Farkwa Day - Hill Campus
Collection of T'shirts

Students are to collect their Farkwa T’shirts from the HHH during lunch time on Wednesday, 10 June. Students are to wear these to School on Friday, 12 June for Farkwa Day.

NGS Players
Revised Start Time

NGS Players Festival Performance on Thursday, 11 June will now commence at 6.00pm NOT at the advertised time in the programme book of 6.30pm.

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.

Safety in Tyrrell Street

Please refrain from double parking in Tyrrell Street after School.  A number of children are risking their safety by running out onto the road in order to be picked up.  The preferred locations are Church or Newcomen Streets.

Uniform Shop
Hours for 2015

The Uniform shop hours are as follows.

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

Sports Socks
Plain white socks are now permitted as we will be phasing out our current striped socks over the next several months.

Canteen Duties

Hill Campus

Mon 8 June:
Public Holiday

Tue 9 June:
Oona Sullivan

Wed 10 June:
Aznive Beesley
Julieanne Vickery

Thu 11 June:
Jennie Dykes
Allison Elvish

Fri 12 June:
Lesley Filby
Chris Downs

Park Campus

Mon 8 June:
Public Holiday

Tue 9 June:
Lisa Griffiths

Wed 10 June:
Belinda Banister

Thu 11 June:
Rachael Heslop

Fri 12 June:
Michelle Smith