Dear Parents and Girls

I seem to start each newsletter in the same way, remarking on how incredibly busy the school is. This newsletter is no exception.

Since my last newsletter, we have witnessed the production of “Girls Like That” – a thought-provoking play that was put on in a most professional manner, with superb acting. We have hosted two very successful Inter-High Swimming Galas at Ellis Park, where the feedback I have received from other schools and outsiders, is that they were some of the most organised and well-hosted galas ever.

Well done to all our swimmers, waterpolo players, divers and their coaches for a most successful season of aquatics. The tennis players are also commended on their champion season. I know that the hockey and netball players are already hard at work for the winter season.

The Choir and Glee continue to make us proud and the Orchestra was superb at Oprah Winfrey Leadership Academy for Girls, earlier this year.

There are a number of building projects that have started on the campus this term:

  • The Consumer Studies room will be upgraded during the April holiday. This renovation will include new cupboards, tiles to the ceiling, new floor tiles, new stoves and microwaves and new work stations and washing areas – just in time for the Culinary sessions at the Kingsmead Book Fair on 13 May! You can look forward to hearing Vickie de Beer, Anna Trapido, Mpho Tshukudu, Jonno Proudfoot, Dorah Sithole, Hilary Biller, Karen Dudley and Yudhika Sujanani.
  • The parking area on the field (off Cecil Avenue) will be developed as soon as we have the plans approved. This will include a new entrance and exit gate, running lanes for athletics, the Grade 0 play area, a hockey warm-up area and two netball courts. This area will allow for 64 parking bays and we will be allocating the various parking areas to the various grades in the school as soon as this development is completed.
  • The kitchen, tuckshop and dining area renovation has already started and although we will be a little disrupted for 4 months, it is going to give us lovely spaces for our girls.

I am hoping to have some pictures and architect’s drawings to you by the end of the term.

On the staffing front, we bid farewell to Kathryn Body who will be leaving us as the end of the term to locate to Cape Town and to continue her studies. We wish Kathryn every happiness in her new venture.

Ms Pienaar will be taking one month of long leave in May and her classes will be covered by Mrs Lorna Garety who has a wealth of English teaching experience.

The Programme for the Kingsmead Book Fair on Saturday 13 May, is as usual, packed with interesting discussions, heated debates and conversations regarding literature and current affairs, with a host of dynamic authors. Gates open at 8h30 and close at 18h00. Entry ticket R60, plus R60 per session. Book via Webtickets , or on the day. There will be plenty of delicious food on offer. Book for the Kingsmead Book Fair here

I wish you all a wonderful April break and a blessed Easter. If you are travelling, please do so safely.

Fond regards

Lisa Kaplan
Head: Kingsmead College

Arts News

MAJOR PRODUCTION

This year’s Senior School Major Production, Girls Like That by Evan Placey, was a wonderful display of the girls’ dramatic talent, their courage to tackle tough yet necessary and current issues, and use theatre as a vehicle to encourage debate and discussion. A mere 6 weeks of rehearsal brought forth performances of an exceptional standard, as the girls incorporated live performance, dance and film to portray a relevant story of how our young women treat each other and societal perceptions through social media. Despite demanding academic schedules, sport and other activities, the girls and staff involved worked with incredible commitment to present an interesting and varied rendition of this thought-provoking theatre piece. A first for Kingsmead was using teaser videos created by the girls to create social media awareness around the performances. The intention was to create hype around the girls’ hard work and assisting in communicating the meaning behind how social media works with our pupils. A sincere thank you to all the girls involved for their bravery and commitment to the Dramatic Arts; the Drama Department: Frances Wilmot, Thuli Ngidi and Caitlyn Morris for their professionalism, vision and guidance; and the Art Department: Lynette Jonker and Danielle Wepener for their assistance with guiding the Art girls with the set.

VISUAL ARTS

Our Grade 12 Visual Arts pupils displayed some of their work in the reception area of the Music Centre and it was evident that they had put much effort and thinking into their work. The theme that the Matrics had to respond to, for the drawing component of their practical work, was ‘Scarcity and Surplus’. There was a wide range of interpretations that was the result of intensive research and metacognitive thinking.

The exhibition that is currently on display in the Music reception area is that of the Grade 11s. Their theme was ‘My Space’. Please see Kingsmead’s Facebook page for more works of art.

MUSIC
The Senior School Orchestra participated in the annual Interschools’ Orchestra Festival with St Stithians, Trinity House School and Oprah Winfrey Leadership Academy for Girls. Hours of rehearsals and learning challenging music, paid off with an absolutely brilliant performance on the afternoon of Sunday, 19 February, at the beautiful Oprah Winfrey Leadership Academy for Girls’ Auditorium at Henley-on-Klip. Our Orchestra girls are commended for their commitment and dedication, spending Fridays and Saturdays in long rehearsals. They did Kingsmead proud, performing their own repertoire with aplomb, and participating in the mass orchestra, with well over 100 young musicians from the four schools.

In March, our Orchestra also participated in an Ensemble Evening at St Mary’s, Waverley, with St Mary’s, St John’s and Sacred Heart. Once again, our Orchestra did Kingsmead proud, ending the evening on a high note. An enormous thank you to Morné van Heerden and Ashlea Martin who continue to inspire and encourage our girls to be their best.

Our musicians performed absolutely brilliantly at the recent Grades 1-3, 4-7 and Senior School Music concerts. The Clarinet pupils had great fun at their recent Clarinet Concert. The Clarinet Ensemble played tunes from animated films to great delight of the audience. Well done to all of our musicians for their brave and entertaining performances!

DEBATING 

The Senior Debating Team took part in the first three rounds of the Central Gauteng SACEE debating competition on Saturday, 4 March at St Mary’s, Waverly. After three rigorous rounds of debate, Kingsmead was ranked third out of twenty-five teams. This bodes exceptionally well for the rest of the season. The two Junior Debating Teams participated in the Central Gauteng SACEE Rounds 1-3, which took place on Saturday, 14 March at Sacred Heart College. Kingsmead went up against Roedean, Sacred Heart College, St Davids, Greenside High School and Jeppe Girls. Kingsmead won two debates. We are still waiting for the results of the third debate as this was a closed round.

The motions for the day were: “This House would ban the breeding and sale of domestic pets”, “This House believes that film companies should not cast actors that are perpetrators of domestic violence”, and “This House bans school rules that place limitations on students’ physical appearance”. Our girls did an exceptional job debating these motions.

Congratulations to all of the debaters who participated, and our teachers, Cindy Britz, Bronwyn Bocher and Leon Mithi, for their commitment to Debating and the number of hours they have given towards this activity.

PUBLIC SPEAKING

This term, our girls participated in the annual Speech and Drama College Public Speaking Festival. Kingsmead entered two teams per grade in the Open Section, as well as a Trophy team, and individual speaker in the Competitive section. Our girls did Kingsmead proud, with interesting and well considered speeches.

The results were as follows:

  • The Grade 8’s achieved ‘A’ symbols.
  • Both Grade 9 teams, achieved A+ and were the top speakers on the night.
  • The Grade 10’s achieved an A and B+.
  • The Grade 11 Impromptu team achieved an ‘A’ and the Prepared team a B+.
  • The Grade 12 Prepared team and Trophy teams both achieved B+ symbols. Our Grade 12 Individual Speaker, Hannah Lapin, achieved an impressive A+ – the top symbol on the night.

Well done to all our Public Speakers, and thank you to the English department: Suzanne Cambitzis (Teacher in charge), Katherine Body, Piers Cruickshanks, Janine Lovatt, Caitlyn Morris, Lisa Pienaar and Bronwen Roberts; and for their dedication to Public Speaking and for guiding our girls in this activity.

Elsabé Fourie
Director of Arts and Music

Sport News

EQUESTRIAN

Congratulations to the following Kingsmead College girls, who placed in the Top Three Positions at the recent Qualifier 2:

Ashley Pretorius: Performance Riding Top Three
Giverny Lugard: Dressage First Place
Giverny Lugard: Equitation First Place
Giverny Lugard: Show Jumping First Place
Hannah Buttifant-Sewel: Performance Riding Top Three
Mia Oliver: Equitation Top Three
Paula Duggan: Dressage First Place

DIVING

Congratulations to Olivia van Vollenhoven (1st in u16) and Sarah Benning (3rd in u16) for their great results. The Swimming team remain in the Premier league and finished 6th overall with combined diving results.

WATERPOLO

Our Kingsmead teams are currently in the Reserve league and lying 1st overall. The second part of the season only takes place in September. We are hoping that they will be promoted to the Premier league at the end of this season.

Congratulations to the following girls who were selected for the Gauteng Winter Training Squads:

Back row: Kimberley Sheridan, Palesa Morifi-Winslow, Catherine Du Toit, 2nd Row: Hannah Hall, Gabriella Staples, Nicola Gace, Gabriella Du Preez, Front Row: Hannah Schleicher, Sarah Minnie, Kate Galloway, Carmen Lyons, Emma Davis

HOCKEY

Congratulations to the following girls who were selected for the District D9 Hockey:

Nomathemba Magwegwe, Kate Galloway, Gabriella Staples, Jamie Lee Clogg, Olivia Van Vollenhoven, Margarete Amoes

TENNIS

The season has now ended with the A team finishing 13th at Inter-High A and our B team finishing 10th.  

SQUASH

Four Kingsmead squash teams entered the league. The teams have acquitted themselves very well.  The league will start again in September.

NETBALL

The following girls have achieved excellent results at District Trials and made it into the top 28:

  1. Sarah Minnie
  2. Aleksandra Marek
  3. Emily Smale

The following girls made it to final round – Top 14:

  1. Nina Stockenstrom
  2. Jessica Shepherd
  3. Carina Afonso

Left to Right: Sarah Minnie, Nina Stockenstrom, Emily Smale, Aleksandra Marek, Jessica Shepherd. Absent: Carina Afonso

Robert Pullen
Director of Sport

Academic News

SCIENCE

Origins Outing – Grade 12 Life Sciences

On Monday 13 March, the Grade 12 Life Sciences girls went on an educational visit to the Origins Museum at Wits University. The outing was an extension to the syllabus that the girls have studied in class about evolution of mankind. The girls were guided through the exhibitions, paying attention to the detail in the skulls and artefacts of the two genera that they study: Australopithecus and Homo.

 The girls were then addressed by Ashley Kruger, a Ph.D student in paleontology, who was actively involved in the recent discovery of Homo naledi. He spoke of the whole process from the start when cavers discovered the bones, to the difficulty in accessing the chamber due to size constraints, and to the global announcement of this remarkable discovery. The highlight of the talk was undoubtedly the chance that the girls had to enter the vault, where the original fossils of many South African discoveries are held, namely Australopithecus sediba, Taung Child and Homo naledi.

Grade 9 Natural Science

The Grade 9 girls have been studying about Human Nutrition in Natural Science. To make the movement of food through the digestive system more accessible to the girls, they used sphero’s in order to simulate this process.

The idea was that the sphero itself is an apple and they needed to code it by giving it commands to make it move in certain directions, at different speeds and change colour when passing from organ to organ through the digestive system.  The girls built their model digestive system from recyclable materials, added labels for each part and then tested their coding to see if it worked.

The exercise proved thoroughly enjoyable and the girls will never forget the pathway of food through the digestive system.

Angela Norman-Smith
Life Science Teacher

Grade 8 Bubbles

The Grade 8 students have been investigating the concept of the Scientific Method.

They were tasked to make a suitable wand and bubble solution following the scientific method principles to see how they could make the biggest bubble.

They prepared these wands and solutions and then reflected on which type of wands and bubble solutions were most effective- they had a lot of fun whilst learning the very important principles around conducting fair tests.

Tracey Minnie
Natural Science Teacher

Wits Photonics Excursion

On the 28th of February, Mr Govender took 4 Learners to the state-of-the-art photonics lab at the university of the Witwatersrand. Here the girls were introduced to the fascinating world of quantum physics and got to speak to some of the leading professors in the country.

The girls also got to witness several exciting experiments and some high powered lasers in action. The girls had a wonderful opportunity to experience the thrill of being in a physics research lab and definitely got a better understanding of the world of Science and Engineering.

Verlin Govender
Physical Science Teacher

CREATIVE ARTS

The Grade 9s have completed their Puppetry Performance task for the term, and the work created was truly delightful. Combining Visual Arts, Dramatic Arts and Music, the project culminated with performances of a high caliber.

After a wonderful puppetry workshop in January, the girls were allocated traditional African stories to work from as a basis. The overarching topic for the project was RE-USE, so the girls re-used the stories and adapted them to an inner Johannesburg setting. Once the girls had created a script, they began with their character and puppet creations, as well as backdrops and props for the performances. The girls were required to source materials from recycled resources for the creation of their puppets. They then created leitmotifs and overtures for the characters and plays, along with adding appropriate sound effects to further assist in the communication of the stories. The girls worked incredibly hard on producing very creative work. In particular, their backdrops added so much to the different scenes within their productions. The scenes were very detailed ranging from landscapes to urban settings – some were even three dimensional. They are commended on their colourful and evocative efforts.

Frances Wilmot 
Dramatic Arts Teacher

GEEKGIRLS CLUB

The Junior and Senior School GeekGirl Clubs went on a visit to the Google Offices on the 15th of March. It really was an eye opener to see the creative environment of a truly innovative company. We all now want to work at Google! It was great to see the South African theme running through every inch of the office space. Our girls enjoyed the afternoon and will now think differently about the kind of workplace they would like to be in one day.

Lulu Burger
ICT Co-Ordinator and Innovation 

The President’s Award

Adventurous Journey – Magoebaskloof
By Raffaela Clegg (Grade 10)

At the start of our Adventurous Journey in Magoebaskloof, we were full of optimism, confident of our overwhelming strength.

We arrived at base camp, cooked our own meals and rechecked our bags for the next day. We woke up early and started walking in the drizzling rain, with the responsibility to navigate our way from the provided map. The ground was slippery, we were drenched, and we had to use rope to get us through some technical sections.

The second day was perfect. The weather was warm, but not scorching, the scenery was gorgeous – indigenous forests with long, tangled vines and ferns decorating the paths. The sun trickled through the canopy of brightly coloured leaves and made the streams sparkle with gold and silver light. We had to walk 18km this day, and what made it exciting, was the fact that a few of the bridges had been destroyed by cyclone Dineo, giving us no other option than to cross the rushing river using a rope for support.

After walking all day, all anybody could think about was taking a shower. Thankfully there was hot water, but at that point we wouldn’t have minded bathing in the Arctic Ocean if it would get us clean!

On the third day, the rain came pouring down again. Most of the hike was a steep incline and we had to do many river crossings because of extensive damage to most of the bridges. The river was even more freezing than the already biting temperature on land. Rachel made the last few kilometres bearable by suggesting games we could play to keep up the morale.

The feeling we all experienced when we climbed over the last hill and arrived at base camp is indescribable. Although it was difficult, the hike was an amazing experience that strengthened many friendships.

I’ll soon forget my aching feet, and when that happens, I am definitely enrolling for the Gold Adventurous Journey.

Congratulations to the following girls who completed the Adventurous Journey:

SILVER:
Alexandra Whittaker
Annabelle Dennison
Charlotte Stockenström
Jennifer Iwuanyanwu
Ciara Foot
Emelia Jessop
Eryn La Fleur
Georgina Clark
Grace Dickson
Jade Fieldgate
Jessica Shepherd
Kashvi Bandyopadhyay
Kristin Eddison
Leisha van Wyk
Mia Oliver
Naseeha Gani
Raffaela Clegg
Rachel Mckay

GOLD:
Husnaa Bux

Photo credit: Charlotte Stockenstrom



Jenny Venter
The President’s Award Leader

Service News

Easter Egg Collection

Our annual Easter Egg collection has been extended until 7 April. Please contribute to this valuable initiative by handing in all Easter Eggs to your form teachers.

Service Excursion

On Friday 17 March the Senior School had the biggest Service Excursion yet: 80 girls visited Kitty and Puppy Haven and handed over a donation of R10 000 from the money raised at Goodwill Day last year.

On Tuesday 29 March, we visited Guild Cottage and had a wonderful afternoon of helping with homework, reading and good conversations.

Guild Cottage is a specialist residential treatment center for sexually abused and traumatised children. They currently have 16 girls (ranging from 8-17 years in age) at Guild Cottage and these girls are supported through remedial programmes and therapy in order to achieve full rehabilitation and recovery. Guild Cottage also works in communities to prevent and identify abuse through awareness and education programmes.

67 Blankets for Mandela Day

Winter is approaching and Kingsmead girls are knitting up a storm. Please submit all squares to Jenny Venter. Wool and needles are also available at R20 from Jenny Venter.

Squares: 20cmx20cm
Large/Adult blankets: 140cmx180cm
Medium/Child blankets: 120cmx160cm
Small/Baby blankets: 100cmx102cm

Jenny Venter
Head of Service

PTA News

Dear Parents

Thank you for your support and encouragement during this first term.

To date, we have sold almost 600 tickets for our Family Outdoor Movie Night which will be held on Friday 31 March. Thank you for supporting this function and we look forward to sharing a happy evening with you and your families.

The termly KCC Draw and Car Parking Bay Raffle Draw will take place in the Junior School Assembly on 3 April. Thank you for supporting these initiatives and we look forward to contacting the lucky winners!

Please diarise the following events which are planned for the remainder of 2017:

Second Term:
Kingsmead Book Fair: Saturday 13 May Book your sessions now, to avoid disappointment!
webtickets https://www.webtickets.co.za/

Parent Social Evening: Friday 9 June

Third Term:
Goodwill Day/Fun Walk and Major Raffle Draw: Saturday 7 October
947 Ride for Bara: Sunday 19 November

Thank you for your continual support of the School Shop.

We wish you a relaxing holiday and safe travelling,

Kind regards
2017 PTA Executive Committee