May 2012

Matariki Magic

Two of our Year 9 Pacific Island students, Mele Hala and Elizabeth Fa’amamafa, have had their song, ‘Eyes of God’ chosen as a Top 10 finalist in the Play It Strange “Matariki”  song writing  competition, 2012. ‘Matariki’ is the Maori New Year, and the song honours the importance of connections – with each other, and the land, sea and sky.

With the support of Jennifer Leauga, Head of Maori, and Lisa Norman, Head of Music, the girls wrote and recorded their song- which includes some Maori text- in very quick time to meet the deadline of May 11. Within a few days, they were notified of their success and, just as quickly, were off to professionally record the song at Studio 203 in Symonds Street.

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For the recording they enlisted the musical and moral support of Olivia Riggs, PaeaTaufa and Mareko Haleti.
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A  compact disc of the Top 10 songs will be produced for distribution, and the songs will go to Tama Waipara for his choice of the top song. The winning performers will sing the chosen song at the Tiramarama concert on July 21st.


Mid-Term Break and Teachers Only Day

Students and families are reminded that this Friday June 1 is mid-term break and Tuesday June 6 is a Teachers Only Day.


Given that Monday June 5 is a public holiday for the Queen's Birthday, Lynfield College classes for students end this Thursday May 31 and resume next Wednesday June 7.


Orangutans and the Palm Oil Issue

On Tuesday a group of Year 10 Social Studies students visited the Auckland Zoo as part of a unit of work on the Chocolate Industry. The students have been looking at human rights and environmental issues within the industry.


Two years ago the Auckland Zoo launched a campaign to encourage consumers to buy palm oil free Easter eggs. In Indonesia and Malaysia the rainforest is being cleared to make way for palm oil plantations. Because the rainforest is the natural habitat for animals such as the Sumatran Tiger, Asian Rhino, Elephant and Orang-utan, deforestation has had a significant impact upon their numbers. It is believed that these species could be extinct in the wild by 2022.


Zoo 1 Zoo 3

At the zoo the students attended the orang-utan encounter in which the keeper gave us an insight into the life of an orang-utan.  She also explained how they are looked after at the zoo and what impact palm oil plantations are having on their habitat. The keepers had put out food for the orang-utans that was a challenge to access. They explained that this was part of the enrichment programme the zoo has for the animals. 


After the orang-utan encounter the students went to the education centre where they took part on a series of activities focussed on the impact of palm oil. Palm oil is in many products on supermarket shelves so students were shown how we can identify it in our food, cosmetics, toiletries etc.

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The next step for the students is to undertake their own social action about an aspect of the chocolate industry they feel could be improved. This could include campaigning against child labour, human trafficking, slavery or palm oil. The students are completing this as part of an NCEA Level 1 Social Studies Achievement Standard.


Winter Sports

All winter sporting codes are into their competitions for the year. Below are a few shots captured during last week.

boys soccer girls touch
Basketball boys rugby 1
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Pacific Island Parents Group Meeting

Held last week, this meeting was well attended and provided opportunity to celebrate achievement and discuss how students may improve their results while looking forward positively to their lives after school.


Mele Hala (Year 9) described how she had written a song which had been entered in the ‘Play it Strange’ song-writing competition. She and other Year 9 students sang the song and it made the top ten. This result has earned the group the opportunity to have their song professionally recorded. Well done Mele!

Nic Bakulich was the guest speaker. Nic described his interesting life and made a number of observations that students should take note of. He emphasized the importance of getting into further training and learning; he spoke of the importance of perseverance and determination.  He said students should investigate what they want to do when they leave school and parents should be part of that conversation. Education is the way and the dream must be the dream of the child. Parents can support this.

Deputy Principal Alistair Aitken presented the Pacific Island Students' Achievement Report. In the discussion that followed, a number of ideas emerged that would help students achieve. Mr Aitken spoke on Pacific Island student initiatives that are taking place in the College. These include academic coaching for students at Years 11, 12 and 13, the establishment of a Pasifika Focus Group whose job will be to oversee the well-being of Pasifika students in the College and an extra-curricular arts course to support senior Pasifika students and enable them to achieve credits for their NCEA.

Speech Winners Applauded

Congratulations to  Annie Lee and Kim Tae Hyouk, who won special awards at the Auckland Regional China Bridge Speaking competitions last weekend. They  performed with excellence amid very strong competition.

Chinese Speech  Chinese speech 2

They will receive these awards at the prize-giving ceremony at the Chinese Consulate on May 29th, and  on the 26th of May they will travel to Christchurch to represent Auckland in the national competitions.


We  wish them every success in adding the national award to their prestigious achievements at regional level.
Ms Gillian Eadie, Business Manager of the Confucius Instsitute, University of Auckland, comments in her letter of congratulation


"There is obviously very fine teaching occurring in your school – congratulations to everyone involved."

The DNA of Kiwis, Kiwis..and Kiwis 


Level 1 Science students have been gaining a greater understanding of themselves this term while studying genetics.

Pictured here is some DNA that has been extracted from kiwi fruit using an extraction buffer and filtration technique. (The DNA is the white suspension you can see).

The second picture shows a kiwi [Serene Lee 10ND] and her kiwi (fruit) DNA.

The important aspect our students appreciate is that all living organisms have DNA from Kiwis (people) to kiwis (birds) to kiwi fruit.

Science DNA 1

Science DNA 2


  Goethe Society Quiz Winners - again!

Ms Heike Zimmer, Teacher of German, reports:


"Our Year12 and 13 Quiz teams competed in the annual Goethe Society Quiz at the University of Auckland on Thursday last week.


After losing the title Third Time Champion last year we were in good spirits to win it back. And we did win it back in spectacular fashion! Westlake Girls and Kristin School had no answers and very seldom had time to press the buzzer, given the lightning fast answers from our Year 13 team (Demi Cox and Sarah Plank)!


We brought home a stack of prizes including a Sachertorte (the famous Austrian chocolate cake) to share with our supporters. Our Year12 team lost to our more experienced Year13 quiz team in the first round, but vowed to be back next year to defend the title."


Congratulations Demi and Sarah!


Sipping Fair Trade Coffee for Oxfam

On Thursday 17th a fair trade "coffee break" was organised for the staff and Year 13 students.


Fair trade coffee, hot chocolate and a bake sale were available to students and staff for a donation to Oxfam. We raised $81 for Oxfam in support of fair trade.


Fair trade is a passion for Mrs Rhonda Weeks, teacher of Hospitality. "Teaching students to think outside themselves, to think globally and to understand that their decisions can impact on others and can make a difference is an important aspect of our role."


The advanced Hospitality students (Year 13)  opened our Hospitality café (we call it D’café) for the whole day, starting at 8am. Staff were invited to come and enjoy a fair trade coffee or hot chocolate, with a banana muffin (sponsored by All Good bananas) during their non contact times. Students were rostered on during their study periods so they are didn’t miss other classes.

coffe break 2 Kendra and Micahaela with All Good bananas Oxfam coffee break and fair trade bananas
Selection of All Good banana muffins


Naomi and Courtney making fair trade coffee Staff supporting fair trade

For students the idea of buying FairTrade coffee is catching on.  At our school cultural festival the students opened D’café. The cafe uses Karajoz coffee and for this day we brought their fair trade ‘organico’ blend. It was hugely popular, people really enjoyed it and supported the fact that it was Fair Trade.

Adult ESOL Students' Optional Learning Opportunities

Langauge learning for the adults in the ESOL area headed by Mrs Margaret Lane takes many interesting forms; knitting baby jumpers, gardening, cooking, walking zumba, board games - all these options provide opportunity to learn and practise English language skills.


The photos show the students enjoying some of these activities. The first photos shows the mutually benficial practice of having an advanced student assist a newcomer.
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Here is the garden that the adults have inherited. This is tended once a week in an option period.  Mrs Lane stewed some rhubarb to show the gardeners that it does not need to be peeled but it does need sugar! Everyone enjoyed a tasting experience.
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A huge amount of knitting has been done for the South Auckland Health Foundation, which supplies little garments for babies who go home to unheated homes. Some of the beanies and singlets have been knitted in the Caring for the Community programme at the end of last year.  Most of the wool has been donated by the staff who have also contributed to the knitting of garments. Adults 5 Adults 6


Work Choice Day at SkyTV

Ten Year 12 and Year 13 students were fascinated to learn about the business of Sky TV as part of Work Choice Day.

From learning about the business of selling an exciting range of entertainiment product through to the technical aspects of TV production and a first hand tour of preparations of TV coverage of the London 2102 Olympics, the tour was comprehensive, fascinating and exhausting!
In the photo the students learn about making local TV content, on the set of Prime TV’s “Seven Days.”
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Geography Students' Field Trip to Rotorua

To reinforce their study of Tourism Development, 46 Year 13 Geographers travelled to Rotorua recently.

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During the two day trip they experienced the ‘big three’ of the area’s attractions - geothermal activity, Maori culture and adventure pursuits.

At Tamaki Maori Village, student James Olsen became Chief for the evening and accepted the wero (challenge) on behalf of two hundred visitors from around the world.

Day two included a visit to the Bathhouse Museum – a lavish Edwardian building where the world’s ailing wealthy would soak in mud and water while receiving electric shocks, hoping for a miraculous cure.

The final stop before heading home was Skyline Skyrides and the Luge –an exhilarating rush down Mt Ngongotaha – adventure activity that is typical of Rotorua’s  contemporary Tourism Development.
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Romeo and Juliet on Stage Next Month

Lynfield College’s modern telling of the classic tragic romance.

This year Lynfield College departs from its tradition of musical productions to bring you the classic but ever contemporary romance - Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet. Lynfield’s version promises a modern perspective on the famous play, using modern music, costumes and some outlandish make up. One ancient item remains - the swords. Our actors have been honing their sword skills through regular practice, and the sword fighting will provide much excitement and tension during the play. With plenty of violence, tension and romance, this is a show teenagers will lap up.

Unusually, this production will be ‘in the round’ – a central stage with the audience in scaffolded seating on four sides of the hall. Another modern aspect is the dancing at the Capulets’ party, where energetic hiphop and latin dance skills will be on display. The set, costumes and performances will create anew Shakespeare’s story in the modern world, as lovers meet while their feuding families go to war and prove unable to stop their fighting, with bitter consequence.

Starring in “Romeo and Juliet” are experienced drama students. They include Dion Pritchard as Romeo, winner of Best Supporting Actor at the AMI awards last year, and Emily Jenkins as Juliet.

Other cast members are Holly Stokes as the very comical nurse, Breanna Blackwell as Lady Capulet, Josh Edmonds as Lord Capulet, Tom Jaeger as Mercutio, Billy Scarfe as Benvolio, James Olsen as Tybalt, Ben Fleming Yates as Balthasar and Gregory, Anup Menon as Sampson, Brayden Silby as Lord Montague, Samantha Holland as Lady Montague, and playing the prince as a Queen instead, is Zoe Vickery. As well a large number of students are participating in the chorus, sword fighting and dancing.

This year we are having a special matinee for Year 10 on Friday 22nd June. The evening performances will start at 7.30pm and should finish around 9.30, including an interval. It will run from Wednesday 20th June to Saturday 23rd June. Food and drinks are on sale at interval.  Dress warmly, bring a cushion and let the ancient Bard and Lynfield students show you a rollicking good time.


Students practise their sword fighting at rehearsal below

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Travelwise Winners' Certificates Presented

As previously reported Lynfield College won the Secondary Schools' category for sustainable travel during Travelwise week. 


The Lynfield delegates, with staff member Ms Louise Goldwater, proudly display the certificates.

  Travelwise certificates  


On-Campus Experience for Pacific Secondary School Students


Each year the Pacific Islands Centre at the University of Otago offers 20 Pacific secondary school students from around New Zealand the opportunity of a lifetime: to experience the University of Otago campus.
Year 13 student Teresia Kora attended from Lynfield College and reports she had a "brilliant"time.

What is the On-Campus Experience?

  • Recipients stay in a University Residential College and attend organised programmes on campus including Otago University Tertiary Information Day
  •  All expenses are paid for by the Pacific Islands Centre


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2012 Pacific Island Parents' Group Meeting Dates

A warm invitation is extended to the parents of our Pacific Island students - the dates for the meetings over the rest of the year are listed below. All meetings are held in the Staffroom starting at 6pm.


Term 2: Thursday 17 May.


Topics: achievement report, a guest speaker and a panel discussion on how to engage with your child to encourage achievement and attendance.


Term 3: Thursday 26 July.


Topics: NCEA access, study techniques, seniors providing tips on how to study.


Term 4: Thursday 1 November.


Topics: celebration and farewell.


Thinking and Speaking about HOT Topics


On Wednesday 9th May, Ms Sarah Parker (GATE Coordinator at Lynfield) accompanied 13 Year 12 students to the Gifted and Talented Conference on Thinking. Lynfield College had one of the highest representations of students at the event which was a great success and our students left feeling as though their brains were thoroughly nourished with higher order thinking!


GATE conference

The Conference was a series of Higher Order Thinking (HOT) lectures on philosophical topics following by the afternoon debate. Topics this year were:

1)      Time

2)      Snail and consciousness

3)      Self Esteem

4)      Philosophy of sex

5)      The afternoon debate; the moot debated was " This house believes that pornography undermines human relationships and is of no value to society."


Our students reflections on their day included :

“Interesting and engaging. I found it relatable”

“I loved the fact that the students got to express their own views”

“I would recommend it to anyone!”

“The best topic of the day! Made me think more about time and the link between philosophy and physics”

Our students through their considered thoughts, expression and presentation were an excellent beacon for Lynfield College.



Building Project Update

Staff and students are now used to negotiating their way around the large building site by the gymnasia, cafe and G Block.

This area is steadily being transformed into an integrated Physical Education/Sport/Health gymnasia complex, a smart Science/Maths addition to G Block, and a new Cafe and Changing Rooms block overlooking the fields. The three images give us a clear idea of what we can look forward to. 

Completion is due in November.
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Rugby 7's selections for Tyla Nathan Wong

Year 13 student and Sports Captain Tyla Nathan Wong has been selected for the Auckland Women’s 7’s Squad attached to the Auckland Rugby Union High Performance Academy (12 players only) competing in tournaments later this year in preparation for the Pub Charity Sevens Nationals 2013 in Queenstown early January.


Tyla has also been selected for the Aotearoa Maori Women’s Sevens Team competing in the Roma 7’s, Italy, departing on the 14th May and away for two weeks.


Finally Tyla has been selected for the NZRU Women’s 7’s National Squad (30 athletes) which will attend camps in June, July, August & September. These athletes will compete against each other to attend tournaments in Malaysia & the Gold Coast later this year in preparation for the IRB Dubai 7’s in December 2012.


Congratulations Tyla and we look forward to hearing how your various teams perform during the coming months!


History from memorials, headstones, newspapers, Hansard and an author


On Friday May 4th two classes of Year 12 History students went on a field trip to Waikumete cemetery and the Auckland Central Library to gather information for their research assignment. One of the requirements of the research assignment is that they students have to gain information from a range of sources. This means that they can not just go on the internet to find their information.

Matthew history trip Soldier history trip

At Waikumete students gathered information from the headstones and memorials in the cemetery as well as from Matthew Gray who took them on a guided tour. Matthew has written and book on the

history of Waikumete cemetery and also writes the Tales from the Crypt column in the Western Leader. 

Microfilm history trip Soleil history trip

In the Auckland Central Library research centre students could be seen accessing old newspapers on microfilm, reading through Hansard parliamentary debate records and photographing local history books. Some were even spotted taking notes from books they were reading through, just as historians have done for many years. These sources combined with books and the internet should mean that the students have a wide range of information to be able to complete their assignments.

Great start to season for Premier Boys Basketball

Lynfield under 19 Boys Basketball had a victory in their first game in the Auckland Premier Secondary School Basketball competition on Friday night.


After taking the lead in the second quarter, the team held on to win 69 - 56 against Avondale College at Avondale.


Next Friday's game is against Rosmini at Rosmini College at Takapuna at 7.30pm


We are the 2012 Travelwise Winners

Lynfield College are the 2012 Travelwise Week Winners in the Secondary Schools category. We ran this competition with our year 9 and 10 classes and have won a set of sports bags for the school.


Over 90% of our students travelled sustainably during Travelwise week (by bus, walking, carpool, bike or scooter). Well done to all involved!


Also, on Thursday 26 April, four students travelled (sustainably, by bus) to the Hilton Hotel in Auckland CBD for the first Travelwise Secondary Schools summit. Highlights of the day included winning a $250 wheels breakfast for Lynfield College (A breakfast for people who have biked, skated or have taken a scooter to school). We look forward to running this breakfast in term 2.


Another highlight was constructing a bike with just parts and a few instructions. After some hard work, a bit of elbow grease and some expert magic, the bikes were donated to some well-deserving refugees.

Images below show Ms Goldwater with our Travelwise delegates and on the right a shot of all secondary school students at the Travelwise summit last week.
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