Dear Parents, Guardians, Staff and Students,
Half-term has come and gone already and the darker mornings signal that the aquatics season is over and that the netball and hockey seasons will be starting. The campus has been a hive of activity this past while and we are looking forward to the upcoming school production this week too.
It is also that time of year when I interview potential students for Grade 8 next year and I am so interested to hear why they want to come to Kingsmead. Most of the students speak of how they see Kingsmead as a balanced school with superb facilities, grounds and staff. Recently, many students have referenced the Growth Curriculum as something that makes Kingsmead stand out for them. They make mention of the feeling they get when they come onto the campus. This is usually backed up by a personal anecdote as to how they have felt welcomed into the school and have had an excellent interaction with either staff or students. They often know someone who comes to the school and they say that they have heard only good things about the school. I am so pleased with the interest that is being shown in attending Kingsmead and I thank all our wonderful ambassadors in this regard.
I wish you a happy, productive half term ahead.
Executive Head: Kingsmead College
JJC Leadership Camp
The week leading up to leadership camp seemed to drag on forever. We could not wait for Friday as it was the highly anticipated Johannesburg Junior Council leadership weekend at Camp Konka. Mieke and I were slightly upset that we were missing the Matric dance – an event that we assisted in planning, fundraising, and organising for almost a year. This feeling was almost immediately forgotten when we arrived at Camp Konka.
Seeing our fellow councillors without their school uniforms was staggering, to say the least. When we arrived at camp, we were told to put our bags down and change into our “mud clothes”. Little did we know that we were about to face the behemoth that is the ‘Mudstacle Course’. After trekking through slippery sludge, we had to walk all the way back to our dorms, looking as if we crawled from the depths of a forgotten swamp, for a well-deserved steaming hot shower. The Mudstacle was only the first of many teamwork-oriented activities and challenges set for us. Throughout the weekend, we participated in activities that taught us about the importance of good communication, patience, and tolerance of others, and most importantly, how to effectively work with individuals who may seem like your polar opposites.
When night fell on Friday, we had a cultural evening. The aim of the evening was to learn about and embrace very diverse cultures, ethnicities, religions, and nationalities. The event was phenomenal. It was absolutely bursting with interesting facts, stories, and fables, clothing, language, practices and most importantly, love and support. Everyone’s culture was deeply embraced and celebrated.
The next night, we had the talent show, which was abounding with niche talents, skills, and acts. We had dancers, performers, singers, and so much more. The night was lively and bursting with applause and laughter.
When Sunday rolled around, we all unanimously agreed that we did not want the weekend to come to an end and that we were all counting the hours until we saw each other again. We made so many connections and lifelong bonds. After a few more activities, we were finally given our committee placements. I am on the Outreach Committee and Mieke is on the Environment Committee.
My highlight of the weekend was definitely singing and dancing with my fellow councillors. Whenever we had free time, we enjoyed each other’s company, accompanied by a choir of us singing a very butchered version of the iconic song “I Want It That Way” by the Backstreet Boys. Those moments have definitely been engrained in our brains and will become memories that we cherish dearly.
This weekend has set us on a great trajectory for the rest of our council year, and we aim to make as big an impact as we possibly can. Our Johannesburg Junior Council motto for 2023 is “Future leaders we aim to inspire; an impactful legacy is what we desire.”
Mieke Costa and Ntuthuko Masetlwa
Spreading the love for Information Technology
I love doing homework, or more specifically, I love doing my IT homework. Yes, you read that correctly, I really love doing anything related to IT even if it consists of copious amounts of homework.
Initially I was hesitant about taking IT as a subject, I was worried that it would be too challenging or stressful. Whilst IT does require a lot of hard work, I have decided to start viewing it as less of a school subject and more like a hobby that I can do in my free time.
By taking IT as a subject, I have been able to learn new concepts, discover the processes behind how certain devices work, as well as improving my creative and critical thinking skills to create solutions for different problems using code. I have discovered that there is nothing more rewarding than spending several minutes, or sometimes hours, creating intricate lines of code, in the hopes of producing a successful programme.
Recently I have taken an interest in coding simple interactive games using Java. Applying what I have learnt in my IT lessons so far as well as watching a few tutorials along the way. I have been able to create a few user versus computer games.
One of my most recent games that I have coded is a simple noughts and crosses game. Noughts and crosses is a two player game with the aim of placing three of your selected tokens in a row going upwards, across or diagonally. In my version of the game the two players consist of the user who will play against the computer. The user gets to place their token first, anywhere on the board. From that point onwards the computer and user will take turns placing their tokens until one player wins by getting three of their tokens in a row.
I had an amazing time creating and learning how to code this game. I can’t wait to learn about more programming concepts so that I can create many more!
Grade 10 Student
Geography and Commerce
The Grade 12 Geography students, together with Ms Rademacher and Ms Tillier, spent a successful morning identifying fluvial features along the Braamfontein Spruit in Delta Park as a part of a Visual Study Matric Assignment. Our hard work was celebrated with a brunch at Fresh Earth Café at the end of our route!
Holocaust and Genocide Centre Excursion
On 28 February, the Grade 9s of Kingsmead College accompanied by Mrs Mdluli, Mrs Anderson, Ms Tillier, Mr Bore and Mr Allan visited the Johannesburg Holocaust and Genocide centre located in Forest Town. The aim of the excursion was to gain further knowledge on the content being learned under the Human Rights and Wrongs module of the Growth Curriculum.
We were first taken through the current temporary exhibition “Seeing Auschwitz” which explored and educated us on the Auschwitz Concentration Camp, which was a complex of over 40 concentration camps operated by Nazi Germany in occupied Poland during WW2 and the Holocaust. Many of the photographs, drawings and writing we had access to were documents that were hidden and later found, because at the time, concentration camps were not public knowledge. It was clear — from the fact that they had their belongings with them — that even the Jews themselves were unaware of what was about to happen to them. We were also able to clearly distinguish between the perspectives of the Shutzstaffel German soldiers and the prisoners. While the SS were focused on capturing the efficiency and stages of the process, the prisoners captured (through drawings) the pain, emotional and physical suffering that was Auschwitz.
The permanent exhibition “Holocaust & Genocide in the 20th century” educated us on both the Holocaust (1933-1945) and the Rwandan Genocide(1944). We were taught the various role players that can exist in such cases; victims, perpetrators, resistors, rescuers, bystanders and collaborators.
We looked at the similarities and differences between the genocides. While propaganda was mainly used in the Holocaust; Divide and conquer tactics were mainly used in the Rwandan civil war to influence ordinary people; people just like us, to do horrible things. The Germans and later Belgians used divide and conquer tactics to turn the Hutus(lower class) against the Tutsis(upper class) over a long period of time but the 100-day mass murder of over 800 000 Tutsi’s seemed to have happened so quickly because the division happened so subtly. What was meant to be classifications based on means of productions were racialised with the use of identity documents that were mainly false.
One of the significant moments of the excursion for many of us was being able to speak to Irene Klaas, a Holocaust Survivor currently living in Johannesburg. “It really feels surreal, you know we learn things in history and to us it’s just a historical event that occurred and it’s not tangible, it’s not real. But then when you hear a survivor, someone from that time talking about it, it just makes you feel so much closer. And you’re no longer distanced from that. You understand that it’s an event that occurred, that happened, that it’s real. And now it just feels that it really did happen. ” Says Hope Ngwenya; one of the Grade 9 students on the trip.
The entire experience just proved how important it is that we are aware of our history and how easily it can repeat itself. It is now our responsibility to learn from the mistakes and lessons of the people that came before us. To be free to have and express our own opinions and not let techniques such as propaganda influence us to do things that go against our morals because hate is an evil that we have almost normalised. We hold a lot more power than we think and we are so much more capable than we know.
Grade 9 Student
Arts & Music
MAJOR PRODUCTION 2023 – Have you booked your tickets yet?
The Senior School Major Production forms part of the school’s 90th Birthday celebrations for 2023. The Custodians of Courage tells Kingsmead College’s story through the eyes of our founder, and other significant women who shaped our history, as well as from the perspective of new Grade 8s.
The script and music were written, composed and shaped for this special event and brought to life by Senior School actors and musicians.
Tickets are available from Quicket: CLICK HERE to buy your tickets
R120 for Adults and R90 for students under 18 (students must attend in school uniform)
Matinee Performance: Tuesday, 7 March: 15h00 – 17h00
Opening Night: Wednesday, 8 March: 18h30-20h00
Gala Evening: Thursday 9, March: 18h30-20h00 ~
All performances will take place in the Lange Hall.
The PTA will sell food, snacks and drinks from 45 min before the start of each event as well as during the interval.
Singing Sistas Choir Festival
The Senior School Choir will be performing at the annual Singing Sistas Choir event on Wednesday 15 March at St Mary’s. Choir parents can consult the letter sent out via email and WhatsApp with more details about this and other upcoming events and must complete the bus form by 8 March. Please join the Parent WhatsApp group so we can keep you updated.
We will not have evening music concerts for the Senior School this term but instead, a wonderful day of music performances on Thursday 6 April as a ‘Day of the Arts’. Our solo instrumentalists and singers, Marimba groups, Choir, Glee, Orchestra and Jazz band will also all perform as part of this day.
Kingsmead U15 and 1st team participated in the Shaun Fuchs U15 Tournament and the Old Petrian’s Water Polo Tournament. Our U15s placed 11th out of 20 schools which is excellent and bodes well for the rest of the season. Our 1st team managed to place 9th and win the plate at the Old Petrian’s National Water Polo Tournament which is a brilliant achievement. Lucy Davis was subsequently selected as a member of the Team of the Tournament due to her spectacular effort in goals.
The season has been a tough one with many injuries and sickness within the team. At the Inter-High Gala the premier team finished 9th and the B team ended 6th at their gala. A very special thanks go to our Matric swimmers for competing in their last school gala, as well as the coaches and parents for their support.
The diving team competed at the annual Inter-High Competition.
Kingsmead finished 6th overall with the following individual results.
5th – Grace Hefer
12th – Jada Williams
10th – Lilla Eyles
13th – Sophia Yiallouris
6th – Katharine Jones
15th – Andza Mbelengwa
Our A and B teams competed this weekend at their Annual Inter High Tennis Tournament. Congratulations to our B team who placed second.
Our squash teams have had a busy time with some catch-up matches. The season is nearing the end and we hope to achieve some good league positions.
Our 1st team squash team attended the KZN Open and all the players performed well. They played in their age groups and certainly gained valuable match exposure and competition.
Sadly with all the bad weather, the 1st SANESA Qualifier had to be postponed to end of April. We wish all our riders the best of luck as they prepare for that competition.
February is the month of love. This month our Kingsmead community have demonstrated an outpouring of love, kindness and generosity.
We launched Service @ School on 2 February. Service @ School offers students the opportunity to spend time creating, crafting and making much needed items for non profit organisations. This newly learnt skill can be applied at home so that students can continue to create, craft and make! Our first Service @ School was Create and Craft, we learnt to make bunnies for children in hospital, and snuffle balls for Guide Dogs. Our bunnies will be gifted with Easter eggs to children at Kids Haven and the Charlotte Maxeke hospital. The snuffle balls are a great training aid for Guide Dogs and these will be given to the South African Guide Dog’s Association when they visit our Grade 1s.
Make a Mac ‘n Cheese
On 1 March we welcomed Sue Daly from Kids Haven to our second Service @ School – Make a Mac ‘n Cheese. With special thanks to Mrs Church and Mrs Masetlwa, the Consumer’s class was set up with all of the ingredients to make the perfect Mac ‘n Cheese. Sue explained to the students the importance of hearty meals for the children, she unpacked food security and food insecurity. Mrs Masetlwa and sous chef Ntuthuko Masetlwa led the Mac ‘n Cheese making and the delicious aromas enticed Ms Palmer and Mrs Bouche to pay us a visit and admire everyone’s hard work. It was a fantastic afternoon, we made 10 large trays of Mac ‘n Cheese. With this newly acquired skill, our students are able to make Mac ‘n Cheese at home for their families and to continue to make and donate Mac ‘n Cheese to Kids Haven.
“Thank you for hosting a fun-filled, skill building day at Kingsmead. It was a great pleasure to meet the group of girls gathering to generously make Mac ‘n Cheese meals for our children at Kids Haven. A special thank you to Mama P for opening up her beautiful kitchen and preparing the ingredients for everyone. It was wonderful to see how engaged the girls were to make these – the tastiest Mac ‘n Cheese meals. What makes me happy is to see children helping children.” ~ Sue Daly.
We had a wonderful time with our Ray of Hope friends on 4 February. There was a fantastic turnout of Kingsmead girls from both Junior and Senior School. We had a fabulous afternoon of baking, drawing, reading, and playing! We look forward to our next Buddy Reading afternoon on 11 March.
“Thusanani Children’s Foundation sent out the call for party packs and Kingsmead College heard us loud and clear! What’s a zoo outing without a treat? We would like to thank each and every learner for allowing us to do so much for our 2023 zoo outing. Together, Kingsmead was able to donate 290 party packs! Your donation and generosity extends far beyond our zoo outing and into our Therapy Clinic and Training Programs, allowing us to give caregivers and their little ones a snack after therapy sessions” ~ Terryl Mathebedi
What a treat to visit the children from Dlala Nje on 15 February. We were warmly welcomed by Grant and Zet. The Dlala children are very special, to have the chance to read, assist with homework, teach littilies how to cut with scissors is such a privilege. Thank you Mrs Pereira for joining us.
Our SANBS Peer Promoters organised a well-attended and successful Blood Drive on 7 February. 29 donors attended, thank you to all staff, students and to our community for donating blood to save a life.
Thank you to the Kingsmead community for donating shoes for Footloose Friday. Just under 2000 pairs of shoes were donated. The shoes were donated to: Sunshine Centre for Children with Disabilities, Kids Haven, Little Eden, Little Stars, Dlala Nje, Maseko Day Centre, Fight with Insight, Lefika, The Epic Foundation, Rays of Hope, and The Chaylil Foundation.
“We are so grateful for your continued love and support from you personally and the Kingsmead Family.” ~ Bertha Muchadeyi, Rays of Hope
“The Lefika la Phodiso kids had so much fun choosing shoes from the donation we received from Kingsmead. We appreciate the support and care from you all. Thank you so much!” ~ Rozanne Myburgh, Lefika la Phodiso
“Thank you so much for the bags of shoes which were delivered. Really appreciate the support” ~ Alta McMaster, The Epic Foundation
“On behalf of Fight with Insight we would like to extend our gratitude to Kingsmead for the recent donation of running shoes for our young boxers who train at our gym. Words cannot express such gratitude for the very generous donation of running shoes to our participants. Your contribution makes it possible to care for, support and improve the lives of our children.” ~ Tsakani Baloyi, Fight with Insight
“A HUGE THANK YOU all, and to everyone who contributed to the collecting of shoes for our Beautiful Sunshine Children. How amazing!!!!! I think each child will get 2 pairs.
Wow that is incredible and just before winter. Thank you, thank you, thank you.” ~ Corrine Jones, The Sunshine Centre for Children with Disabilities
“Our heartfelt thanks to Kingsmead College for a BIG donation of shoes we received last week. We were so excited that we began to distribute the shoes without any delay. The children at Kids Haven were so thrilled. One of the youths was grateful for a pair of shoes and told us how happy she was because she always has glue on hand to repair the shoes that are falling apart.” ~ Connie Biyela, Kids Haven
Thank you, Kingsmead community, for reaching out and having such a positive impact on the lives of others.
Head of Service