The Year 3 and 4 Students headed off to their overnight camp at the S.E.A. Aquarium and Camp Challenge activities. The aims of the camp are:
Study of Marine Life and Marine Habitat
Highlights of Day 1
Team building challenges and the visit to the S.E.A. Aquarium where the students bunkered down at the S.E.A. Aquarium and drifted off to sleep gazing at the schools of fish at the Open Ocean Habitat, home to more than 100,000 marine animals from over 800 species.
Highlights of Day 2
Behind the scenes tour of the S.E.A. Aquarium before the doors opened, followed by a Dragon Boat Race, lunch and awards before heading back to school.
See Full Article including pictures and video in News, School News
The Avondale community has had the pleasure of AvDads performing at many of our school events and we wanted to get to know the band a little more and learn how the band came about. We caught up with Nicholas Power (Aussie Nick) to ask a few questions about the band and where else we can see them play in Singapore.
Who are the AvDads? How did you manage to form a band in Singapore? Why the name AvDads?
We are called The AvDads, which derives from the fact that all members are/were fathers at Avondale Grammar School here in Singapore. The band went from supporting school events like the Avondale Dads Camp, to independent gigs on bigger stages.
We have seen you at many Avondale events, like our Family Fun Day & Carols Night, where else are your gigs?
Examples of other gigs include the Hard Rock Café, The Actors Bar in Boat Quay, the Sentosa Beach Cricket Tournament and the Dempsey Outdoor Festival. We are also excited to be playing at Dallas Suntec on the 19th of August
Do you only play at these places or can you also perform at private events?
Usually word of mouth gets us invitations here and there. There are rumours of appearances forthcoming at Australian and NZ High Commissions….
What type of music do you like to play? What song really gets the crowd going?
Quite a broad range of 80’s Aussie (and Kiwi!) pub rock (INXS, Angels, Midnight Oil, Hoodoo Gurus, Dragon, Australian Crawl)….Actually, we also sprinkle our set with international stuff from the likes of David Bowie, Eagles, U2, Rolling Stones, Doors and Violent Femmes.
Depending on the mood and time of night, we find that the crowd enjoy swaying to some of the Crowded House and Hunters & Collectors songs. However, we are a rock band and we do like amping up the noise and tempo later in the night and finishing with The Hoodoo Gurus’ “Like Wow, Wipe Out” and Angels’ “Am I ever Gonna See Your Face Again” etc. But there is generally something for everyone (provided you are in the 35 to 45 age bracketJ)
How often do you get together and practice?
Coming up to a gig, sometimes twice a week. However usually 1-2 times a month. Like some folk play tennis after work, for us it’s generally just to get together and have fun playing, rather than practising for a specific event.
Tell me about the Band Members
We have seven members all with different talents. Nicholas Power AKA (Aussie Nick) plays base, Anthony Mervin AKA (Merv) is lead guitar and Singer, Andrew Henry plays keyboard, Kristian Joyce plays Rhythm Guitar and Sings, Mick Andrew plays Rhythm Guitar, Nick Gabor plays Rhythm Guitar and Rory Fitzpatrick plays Drums!
The AvDads will be playing at the Avondale Family Fun Day on the 5th of November. This event is organised by our Parents Association. You can also catch them at their next gig at Dallas Suntec City on the 19th of August from 8pm.
The human heart is an amazing instrument that keeps us all going. It does so because it has two vital parts that complement each other and keep our blood healthy. Our school is a bit like that. The two vital aspects of the school are what it does to develop and support the students’ wellbeing and what it does to develop and support the students’ learning. It is our job to nurture and inspire our students’ hearts and their minds. How do we do that at Avondale? Our wellbeing program is set in the context of Positive Education and Restorative practice framework. Our students have been working on classroom agreements, for example, in order to set what we might have referred to in the past as the “rules” for the way the classroom operates. Wellbeing, however, involves more than that and so we encourage our students to be physically active to understand their bodies and appropriately healthy nutrition. In addition we involve them in activities which focus their attention on being self-reflective, serving others and, in doing so, apply the school’s values in a global outlook.
Wellbeing is one side of the education process and nurtures the heart of the student…some would say that “the education of the heart is the heart of education”, and of course the mind is the other half. At Avondale we are proud of the fact that our academic program is focussed on the needs and interests of the learner and their learner directed goals. We try all the time to have classroom activities that are inquiry based, that challenge the learner to think, be creative and work in collaboration with their peers.
By inspiring hearts and minds of our students we aim to improve their competence, their confidence as learners and as people, their courage to take on the risks that life throws at them and their compassion for others. That is what Personalised Learning is about at Avondale!
As preparation for an inspiring and engaging Term 3 at Avondale, all Staff participated in Professional Development Days in Restorative Practice. This was held over the course of two days.
Restorative Practice is a holistic and restorative approach to building and solidifying relationships. It focuses on the three R’s – Respect, Relationship and Responsibility.
We took the opportunity to analyse the Positive Education philosophy of Avondale and celebrate the many and varied ways it is embedded in classroom teaching and learning. This was a catalyst to delve further into creating an environment that aligns with the Avondale Values and solidifies whole school connectedness.
Many aspects have already been embraced by the classrooms, changing the framework of traditional Class Rules, to ‘Essential Agreements’ and the ‘Five Finger Fix’, a simple strategy to develop self-management and conflict issues with other students in the school yard.
I was humbled by the enthusiasm of all Staff embracing this approach and trending in the direction of a Restorative Avondale Community.
Assistant Principal (Acting) Teaching and Learning
At the start of Term 3, staff at Avondale Grammar School had the opportunity to participate in a Lego Robotics training session offered by Duck Learning. The focus of the training was for staff to learn how to operate the robotic equipment using integrated Bluetooth technology, how to program and code functions to control robotic behaviour, and how to implement Lego Robotics in classroom curriculum throughout the school.
Avondale students in the Primary/Secondary School will be participating in a BOUNCE programme held in Orchard Road for physical education lessons during term 3. This is an exciting new programme for students at Avondale Grammar School. The facilities include the following 7 zones:
After a wonderful vacation and interesting travel for many of us, here we are back ready for the term ahead. This is an exciting time for Avondale, not only will we celebrate our tenth birthday as a school, we also have a new owner (Cognita) which comes with a new opportunity to determine the school’s direction for the future.
A Learning Revolution
Steve Jobs, of Apple fame, described the mobile phone as a “lifestyle device” and if you look around in the street, on the MRT, or on the bus, there are few people today who do not have their mobile phone in their hand all the time. Some of course are so committed to the content of the phone as they walk along the footpath that they are a pedestrian hazard. Fewer and fewer people read books or even newspapers on the train. Those of us, like me, who were born before the 1990s, have had the privilege of living in two worlds. The pre-digital world was video tapes, tape recorders, pay phones and, of course, type writers. In this digital world we now live in, we record movies and our favourite TV programs, explore the offerings on Netflix, rely heavily on the computer and share most of our lives online.
Avondale has seen the arrival of new sports teams’ uniforms this term. Students have worn their new sports kits with pride and it has increased their sporting performances. Check out the new soccer, netball and athletics uniforms below.
ACSIS Junior and Middle School Track and Field Championships
Fifty students from Avondale competed in the ACSIS Junior and Middle School Track and Field Championships which were held on Saturday 6th May at Choa Chu Kang Stadium and Saturday 13th May at Singapore American School Stadium. Fourteen International Schools throughout Singapore competed at these two carnivals and only the top two students in each age group were eligible to compete. The performances of our athlete’s at these carnivals was exceptional and a lot of students from Avondale placed in the top ten in their event. Congratulations to Lia Eggleton for placing 2nd in the 8U girls basketball push and Cecilia Teoh for placing 3rd in the same event. Laura Moreira ran a gutsy race to place 3rd in the 10U girls 800m and Ella Fitzpatrick threw a very long distance in the 11U girls ball throw to place 2nd. The students looked fantastic in their new athletic uniforms and they all did Avondale proud!! Thank you to the parents who came to support their children as they tried their very best in their events.
11U Girls Netball Finals
On Saturday 13th May, students in the 11U girls netball team participated in the final round of competition at Tanglin Trust School. Due to wet weather, the netball tournament took place indoors and the games were shortened to only 8 minutes. Avondale played 6 games of netball against various International Schools throughout Singapore. It was evident that the girls were determined to win all games and they played brilliantly from start to finish. The girls convincingly won all of their games apart from one against AIS where they lost by only one goal. As it was a tournament and there were no play-offs, the team who won the most games would be awarded the overall winners. Avondale were the overall winners being the only team to lose only one game!
To think that a lot of the girls had never played netball before the start of the season is an amazing achievement and shows the hard work and effort that all of the girls put in to come out on top. The girls are very deserving of their victory. Thank you to the parents who came to support their children as it truly lifted the girls to their victory!
Apron Strings – The question that is often asked of children ahead of starting formal school (Foundation in our case) is whether they can tie their shoelaces, pack their own bag and open their own lunch box. All this is an indication of their (growing) independence with their physical environment. Young people feel good about themselves when they know they can do something or deal with something when the adults in their lives are not around. Developing their capabilities means that they are better able to cope with new situations and face challenges as they arise.
Giving children greater responsibility is very difficult for some parents and for some teachers. It means we have to let go of the control we think we need to have to “teach” young children what they need to know, to do and to be like. It is often faster, easier and you know it is done properly …to do things for them. To assume they are not up to it or not ready. Parents these days are exposed to much more “stuff” e.g. social media,that leads them to feel a greater need to protect their children from perceived dangers and therefore feel they have to protect and shield them from potential harm. However the long term effect is the more we do for them the less able they are to do for themselves.
Some experts say we should be teaching children how to do things rather than why not. In a personalised learning environment all teachers need to make a judgement as to what age/stage a student can do/should do a particular thing or develop a particular concept or skill and be “allowed” to take the responsibility for the learning experience and its consequences. Probably the most important thing students learn in school is the ability to respond appropriately and effectively in any situation and to any challenge. (ability to respond = responsibility!) This also means recognising that the best way for a student to learn something is to do it for themselves and to continue at it until they can do it well…practice makes perfect! This is the core of good educational theory.
Sometimes…perhaps often…we need let go and bring the child’s perspective into our thinking instead of wanting them to keep a firm grasp on the apron strings. As teachers and parents we all need to ask ourselves regularly…Am I doing this to facilitate the child’s learning or to maintain control?
Today we celebrate the end of Term 2 with a school assembly to recognise those who have earned a Phoenix Award for effort in a particular subject. It is also a time to reflect on the school reports that have just been issued and for each student to ask themselves…Is this the best I can do? Many students have done very well and others have managed to “hang in there” and will get better as time goes on. Reflection on these questions is good for all of us teachers, parents and students…and to remember those ten two-letter words that I mention often “if it is to be it is up to me”.
Sadly we have some students leaving us today and to them and their families we say thank you for spending the time with us at Avondale and remember that “once a member of the Avondale family, always a member” and therefore you are always welcomed back into the fold should you ever want to return…in the meantime we wish those families well in their new endeavours.
April 25 was a very memorable day at Avondale Grammar, made particularly special by the respectful assembly and the beautiful voices of the children as they joined in the singing, speeches and the laying of the wreaths in remembrance of those who have served in the forces to allow us the freedom we enjoy today. The assembly commenced with a brief introduction by Mr. Doherty followed by an address from our guest speaker Sub Lieutenant Francis Borok, of the Royal New Zealand Navy. Other special features of the ceremony included a solemn reading by school captain, Natasha and a reading of the Oath by Daniel in Year 3. Year 4 led the school in singing the New Zealand National Anthem, while all children joined in for both the Singapore and the Australian National Anthems. We were particularly proud of the children as they showed respect and honour for the occasion.
At Avondale we strive to provide a healthy selection of foods, drinks and snacks for children and staff. The school has now revised the canteen menu, and from Term 2 Parent’s will be able to place their child’s lunch, snack order online via the Avondale School’s website with a log in.
Please note:Log in details and more information will be emailed to all parents during the school holidays.
Firstly I would like to take this opportunity to welcome our new families to Avondale. 4 new children started in the Junior School and have all settled in very well. Great job guys!
On Monday morning as I was at the gate greeting teachers, children and parents back from the term break I had a real sense of energy and calm. An oxymoron to be sure, but as the day started the children demonstrated an excitement to be back at school with their teachers and friends while being comfortable with their classroom environments and surrounds. As the week progressed, this energy and calm created a great vibe around the school giving a sense of comfort and peace.
There were so many exciting things going on in the classrooms; it was wonderful to see the children fully engaged and immersed in learning.
Further to this Uncle Joseph found us some used tyres that were about to go onto the tip. He brought them into the playground to spark interest with the children. In no time at all the children found all sorts of creative ways to use them in their play; building them up to hide someone inside, pushing them to see how far they rolled by themselves and putting a ball inside and watching both roll along simultaneously. They have been intrigued at how the ball inside stayed at the bottom of the rolling tyre… How does that happen? Children chased the tyres down the hill and rolled them back up again.
Just before the term break we were delighted to welcome Ms Tina Swan to the Foundation A Class.
Tina is being helped to settling in with Ms Hema’s kind help. Tina tells me that so far she is enjoying her time here with us. We also welcome Ms Liven who started this week in the Year 2G class as assistant teacher and Ms Adilya joins us as the new Mandarin Teacher. We are very excited to inform you that the music teacher Mr Michael Henkel has joined us. Welcome one and all!
ANZAC Day ceremony: We ask children to bring a flower in on Tuesday 25 to assist their class in making a flower wreath to lay in remembrance.
To prevent distress from loss or damage encourage children to leave their own toys at home (unless it is a comfort toy).
School closure on Monday 1 May for ‘May Day – Labour Day’.
Parents remaining with children after school, please wait in the canteen area with your children until 3:30 p.m., or until the last bus has gone before using the field and front playground.
When changing transport arrangements please advise Avondale Communication and your child’s class teacher.
Thank you for your kind support.
Karen Nicholls Head of Pre-school, Junior School
This term the activities in the school front playground have been highly anticipated by the children as they come out for morning break and lunch play time. Firstly, a big ‘thank-you’ to the PA for supplying us with some fantastic resources. Children have building blocks, skipping ropes, noughts and crosses and connect four to play with. As well there has been a number of role-play scenarios from a kitchen and table, Master Chef, and a shop where children have enjoyed being social, creative and engaged in play. Quiet areas have been created too. These are places where children can escape for a while to cool down and relax from the heat outside. They have a choice of chalk drawing, paper activities such as paper folding and drawing or they may simply relax in a beanbag and read a book.
This week we have introduced the children to the game of 4 Square and of course they still enjoy playing soccer and using the climbing frame. With so much choice now we are seeing children thoroughly enjoying their play and Ms Christine has reported fewer grazed knees. A great community effort!
Well done to our fantastic Preschool students who entered into the Athletics Carnival with such gusto this morning. Thank you also to the parent volunteers for giving up their time to make the event so community spirited. It was a happy morning.