Kingsmead Newsletter May 2018

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Dear Kingsmead Community

Welcome back to Term II and I wish you a happy, healthy and productive term ahead.

We started the term with a combined assembly which celebrated the life of Miss Margaret Edwards and spoke about the impact she had made at Kingsmead during the 16 years that she was the Headmistress of the school.

Extract from Assembly:

“This morning I would like to pay tribute to a great woman, who was the Headmistress of Kingsmead College for 16 years from 1983 until her retirement in 1998.

From the many tributes that have been posted on social media and from her funeral tributes, you can hear that she made a significant contribution to, not only Kingsmead, but to the world of education as a whole.

She believed in all the girls in her care, even the naughty ones, and was uncompromising on our values and on morals. She had the ability to see the potential in each girl – which is something that we strive to achieve in our ethos today.

She was kind and caring and always consistent in her approach. One of the girls said she remembered her walking around the property with her torch at the Matric dance, making sure that no-one was hiding in the bushes.

She had an enormous impact on so many girls’ lives who passed through the gates of Kingsmead and she will be remembered as a legend in the education circles.”

The Choir who performed so successfully overseas also entertained us with a medley of songs and we thank them for being such wonderful ambassadors for the school during their trip.

Our staff attended several conferences over the past few weeks and we are looking forward to their feedback around the issues raised at these conferences:

  • Kingsmead hosted Australian James Anderson at the Thinking Schools South Africa workshop on 8 May and around 180 teachers attended this conference. Thank you to Ingrid Beekhuizen for co-ordinating a superb day.
  • We sent almost 20 teachers to the “Raising Boys and Girls Conference” which was hosted at St Stithians on the 10 and 11 May.
  • The iPad Summit was held on the 14 and 15 May at St Andrew’s School and this proved to be a most successful conference.

I hope to provide further information in the newsletters about these conferences.

The Annual Kingsmead Book Fair was held on Saturday 12 May and this was definitely a signature event for the school. The weather held out and the day was fantastic with many people telling me that it was the best Book Fair ever. The programme was varied and interesting and had something for everyone. The food was a treat and the vibe on the day was wonderful. Thank you to the whole community who ensured that this day was such a highlight.

I have just returned from the SAGSA (South African Girls’ Schools) Conference that was held in KZN. The key note speaker was Lisa Damour from the US and she was truly inspiring with her insights into the various ages of girls. I will discuss this further with the girls and staff, but my main take-aways from her talk were the following:

There are 3 misconceptions of girls being strong and we must unpack these with our girls:

  1. The misconception that being strong means being fearless
  2. The misconception that being strong means speaking boldly.
  3. The misconception that being strong means always standing up for oneself.

She went on to “normalize” stress and anxiety and said that most stress and anxiety is a helpful internal warning system. We need to assure our girls that they are not only strong when the fear is gone. Obviously, this is not including trauma or an amount of stress that is out of proportion.

I have thought a lot about her idea that girls don’t always have to stand up for themselves and perhaps it is a tactical decision (and a sensible one) not to engage at that time.

I am going to circulate the full notes that I took and will make them available to parents, staff and girls.

I wish you all a wonderful term ahead.

Fondest regards

Lisa Kaplan
Head: Kingsmead College

The Kingsmead Book Fair 2018

Kingsmead Book Fair 2018

The annual Kingsmead Book Fair, on 12 May 2018, hosted more than 130 authors over 50 sessions throughout the day. The programme was rich in diverse and meaningful discussions between panellists and the audience. One session even brought its audience to tears with the subject matter. We had a delicious variety of food stalls and drinks to keep appetites satisfied between sessions. The feedback received from the community and authors alike has been overwhelmingly positive and the day was a resounding success. Thank you to all those that attended and to our amazing sponsors; Standard Bank – Wealth and Investment, 702, Porcupine Ridge, and Timberland.

Visit the Kingsmead Book Fair website to see a highlights video and a gallery of some of the gorgeous photographs of the day.

Alex Bouche and The Kingsmead Book Fair Team 2018


Arts News



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Once again Kingsmead participated in this year’s Festival of Excellence in Dramatic Arts. The cast comprised Grade 10 and 11 Drama students, and it was an exciting two weeks in preparing for the performance on 19 May 2018. The cast tackled issues around sex trafficking – a problem the world over – where a girl thinks she is winning a prize to attend a theatre course in Cape Town, but ends up being swindled into being part of a brothel. The script was adapted to suit a South African context from the original script that was set in the UK – this was done by Mrs Wilmot and Grade 12 student director Rachel Maruatona. All involved were excited to perform on a professional stage at the Joburg Theatre complex, and hoped to bring some awards home as has been done in previous years.

We are exceptionally proud of all who were involved in FEDA this year. Not just because of the difficult subject within the play that was tackled maturely, but also because the team involved put on an outstanding show in only 10 days, where most schools had been working on their pieces since March and early April. The cast and crew were overwhelmed by the support shown by the Kingsmead Community, as this year’s performance was the best attended yet by parents and Kingsmead students alike.

Adjudicator Craig Morris stated that he simply “loved this play”, and Paul Slabolepszy believed the work to be “very powerful” – high praise indeed for this young cast from stalwarts from South Africa’s theatre community.

In rehearsal at the Joburg Theatre:

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Student director:       Rachel Maruatona
Assistant directors:   Georgina Kelly & Palesa Morifi-Winslow
Mary                           Natalya Meyerowitz
Martha                       Rachel McKay
Dali                             Sinakho Ncala (KES)
Peter                           Christopher Ayers (KES)
Police officers           Olivia Fowler & Tayla Schwegmann
Kitty                            Palesa Malebana
Sofia                           Jessia Sureal-Lucas
Crystal                        Sarah Storey
Portia                          Mia Oliver
Lola                            Juliana Demetriades
Man                            James Rumsey (St John’s College)
Brothel workers       Chloë Buchel, Rochelle Coetser, Isabella Daniels, Georgina Gillson, Adiya Pillay, Tasmiyah Surtee
Dancer                       Sara Feldman
Sound & Lighting:    Cheyenne Peter & Keabetswe Mothapo
Special effects-Film:Laura Hudson
Costumes:                 Georgina Kelly & Palesa Morifi-Winslow
Poster Design:         Laura Hudson
Stage Manager:        Kalista Harty
Backstage Crew:      Kelsey Cloete, Christi Martin, Caitlin McCrum, Michal Sage, Emily van der Want
Staff in charge:         Mrs Frances Wilmot & Ms Rangoato Phogole

Congratulations to the FEDA Team who were nominated for the Best Costume award, and Rachel McKay who was nominated for Best Actress.

Frances Wilmot
Dramatic Arts Teacher


The Grade 11 Art class reflected and engaged with the theme of ‘Journey’ in their drawings. They were encouraged to try out interesting mediums and come up with a personal interpretation depicted in a thought provoking manner. Each work has a rationale that clearly explains the meaning behind the work. Please take the time to pay a visit to the Music department foyer to view the work.

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On the 12th May the Senior team participated in rounds 1-3 of the Provincial Champs at Trinity High School, going up against the best teams in Gauteng. The girls worked with great enthusiasm towards rounds 4-6 which were hosted at Kingsmead on Saturday.

The Junior rounds 1-3 took place on Saturday 19 May at Waterstone College and rounds 4-6 will be taking place on 2 June at Parktown Girls.


Thank you to all our parents who supported the Music Festival on the 5th April last term. It was a great success and wonderful to have so many parents from our community together to celebrate our young musicians. We thank our girls for their hard work, the music staff who made it possible for our girls to sound so impressive and the parents who sponsored wine and sherry and helped on the night. Thank you to the support staff and the team of people who worked behind the scenes to make it all come together.

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From the 18th to the 29th April, 43 Choir members toured to the beautiful cities of Vienna and Salzburg in Austria and Lido di Jesolo, Venice, Verona, Padua and Treviso in Italy. The itinerary included visits to Belvedere Palace, Stephen’s Cathedral, the House of Music, Hohensalzburg Fortress, Mozart’s Birthplace and Residence, Schönbrunn Palace, Hellbrunn Palace and Trick Water Gardens, Palazzo Zuckerman and Capella degli Scrovegni, a boat trip from Strobl to St. Gilgen, an exciting visit to the Salt Mine Hallein and a workshop at the Conservatory of Music ‘Cesare Pollini’,

The Choir performed in Austria at Pfarre Reindorf, Evangelische Friedenskirche Bad Ischl and Bad Hofgastein Kursaal and in Italy at Villa Ducale and St. Mark’s Basilica in Venice.

The European audiences absolutely loved the African programme and we had standing ovations at every concert. It was a privilege and humbling experience to see the excitement and emotional response of the audiences at the concerts as well as the excitement at our impromptu performances on the streets of the places we visited.

We thank everyone who supported the tour in any way. It was an absolutely amazing experience the choir members will never forget.

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From the 22nd to the 24th May, Kingsmead hosted the 14th annual Orchestra & Ensemble Festival. This event has become a firm favourite on many schools’ musical calendar, and this year, 17 institutions were involved. The programme included music of a wide variety, including traditional African and Greek Music, Film tunes, Jazz, Pop and Rock. Orchestras, Ensembles, Marimba bands, Wind bands and Percussion groups shared the stage to great delight of the audiences.

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The World Choir Games is the biggest international choir festival that takes place every two years. The aim behind the event is to bring people together from all over the world to celebrate music as a common language and unite different cultures and nations. The World Games offer participation to choirs of various sizes and combinations of voices in a wide variety of genres and styles of music. In the thirty years of the competition, this 10th edition will be the first time on African soil. Our Senior School Choir is excited about the prospect of being part of this incredible event.

Elsabé Fourie
Director of Arts & Music

Sports News


Kingsmead hosted the u18 Girls National Tournament from 5 to 8 April. This event was moved from Cape town due to the water situation. The event ran the same time as the St Mary’s hockey festival and proved to be a big success.

The following is a list of players that have been invited to attend the Winter Provincial squad training:

Jessica Bennett
Sophia Camacaro
Kimberley De Sousa
Meghan Eddison
Anoushka Fornoni
Caitlin Stott
Emma Van Beukering

Georgia Dodd
Catherine Du Toit
Kate Galloway
Hannah Hall
Hannah Schleicher
Gabriella Staples

Gabriella Du Preez
Nicola Gace
Sarah Minnie
Kimberley Sheridan


One of our staff members, Miss D Philippopoulos and two students. Olivia van Vollenhoven and Sarah Benning were selected to attend an International Youth Diving competition in Dresden this past April. Both girls achieved good results and gained valuable experience.


At the recent District trials, 3 of our girls were selected in the top 28, Jessica Shepherd, Nina Stockenstroom and Alex Marek with Sarah Minnie making it to the top 14.


SANESA Qualifier  2

Our results are as follows for Qualifier 2 across all levels of the different disciplines were:
Ashley Pretorius: 2nd in Dressage and 5thin Performance Riding
Ella Hunt: 4th in Working Rider and 9th in Dressage
Emma Gouws: 3rd in Dressage, 6th in Performance Riding and 5th in Eventing
Hannah Buttifant- Sewel: 7th in Performance Riding and 8th in Dressage
Leigh-Ann Herselman: 2nd and 6th in Dressage
Mia Byrne: 5th in Handy Hunter
Olivia Hide: 1st and 2nd in Dressage
Sarah Warren: 4th in In Hand Utility and 8th in Performance Riding


The season has just started and we had 8 girls attend final hockey trials. The following girls made it into the Provincial teams:

Margarete Amoes        SG u18 A
Husnaa Bux                  SG u18B
Jamielee Clogg             SG u18C
Gabriella Staples          SG u16 B

Robert Pullen
Director of Sport


Academic News


In March, 57 Kingsmead girls took part in the English Olympiad. The Olympiad is contested by over 7000 candidates from across the country and this year explored the theme of War and Peace through poetry. The focus is on individual and creative responses to long essay-type questions. Congratulations to the following girls who achieved the 80% standard for gold certificates:

In Grade 11: Tahiya Mayet and Yusaiyrah Mayet;
In Grade 12: Shivani Vishwakarma, Chantel Maina and Alexandra Phillips.

We eagerly await the announcement of the top 100 results and the actual certificates, in July. We will then award these in assembly.

Piers Cruickshanks
Director Of Academics 


Learning about the Human Circulatory System – Grade 9

Who would have thought that learning about the Circulatory System could be fun, exciting and interesting all at the same time?

The Grade 9s were divided into groups and each group was given a special T-shirt called a Virtuali-Tee. The shirts had abstract, meaningless designs on them and none of us knew what we were going to do. We were then directed to an App on our iPads called Curiscope, which scans the T-shirt, showing us what was happening inside our bodies by using augmented reality. It was like we had x-ray vision! We were able to see the heart beating inside the ribcage, inside the heart itself, and we were able to look inside a blood vessel to see how the blood flows.

As astonishing as the T-shirt & App were, what was more exciting was the journey it took us on through the Human Circulatory System. This experience had everyone in the class enthusiastic and excited to learn about the human body.

Please see video below on learning about the Human Circulatory System.

Circulatory System

The Grade 9’s are learning about the Circulatory System and as part of discovering what this system is comprised of, they used augmented reality in their Natural Science lessons.

Posted by Kingsmead College on Wednesday, 16 May 2018

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Gallia Fenster
Grade 9 Student

Heart Dissection – Grade 9

The heart dissection we did in Natural Science was definitely about responding with wonderment and awe from our whole class. We worked in pairs to dissect a sheep’s heart. We also had an informative demonstration with the visualizer of an ox heart, which is nearly 6 times the size of a sheep’s heart. Instructions guided our every move and what important parts and structures to identify within the heart. We had to use our past knowledge from class time and apply that in identifying the parts of the heart. We learnt so much more about what a heart really looks like compared to the diagrams that we use to study from. I am confident in saying that it taught us how one of the most vital organs in the human body functions. With the correct equipment, knowledge and purpose we all successfully dissected a heart for the very first time.

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Alessia Losciale
Grade 9 Student


Grade 12 Life Sciences Outing to the Origins Museum

On the 3rd April, the Life Sciences girls took a trip to the Wits Origins Centre Museum. We did not know what to expect but as we entered the museum, we were all pleasantly surprised. The sculptures, exhibitions and displays were impeccable. Having to fill in our booklets would have been tedious had it not been for the very approachable and knowledgeable tour guides. The numerous short films displaying the history of man enabled us to easily grasp and understand the information. After the tour we had a talk by Dr. Ashley Kruger, a lecturer in Palaentology.  We all prepared for a long, slightly dull lecture, but Dr. Kruger kept his talk brief, yet still managed to give us the knowledge and understanding we needed. This gave us more time in the fossil vault which was the most exciting part of the whole outing. We saw the original fossils of Taung child, Homo naledi and many other hominid fossils. However, the biggest highlight was seeing Little Foot. This is the most complete Australopethicus fossil skeleton ever discovered, and we were enormously privileged to see it. The Origins Centre is one of the many accessible museums that display our country’s rich heritage and history and it is important to visit these sites to understand our history.

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Husnaa Bux
Grade 12 Student

Service News


A total of 260 cans and 3138 Easter Eggs were collected for our Share What You Can Easter drive. The Easter Eggs were donated to ASHA crèches and Fight with Insight and the cans were donated to the Stop Hunger Now campaign.

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The major fundraiser for the first term was the annual Dance Marathon in support of Dignity Dreams, which was held on Tuesday 10 April. R88000 was raised and will enable Kingsmead to donate 440 Dignity Dreams sanitary packs to girls who do not have access to sanitary products.

Dignity Dreams is a Non-Government Organisation which focuses on promoting menstrual health and provides washable and reusable sanitary wear which can be used for up to five years. Dignity Dreams has also given previously unemployed women the opportunity to run their own businesses by training them to sew its products.


Kingsmead College supported Mother’s Day Connect for the second time this year. This initiative celebrates new moms in maternity wards on Mother’s Day. Kingsmead College donated towards the gift packs and the response was overwhelming. Gifts packs were delivered at hospitals in Thembisa and Alexandra.


Kingsmead College, in association with Dignity Dreams, Community Hours and the Johannesburg Junior Council celebrated Menstrual Hygiene Management Day with an afternoon tea on Saturday 19 May. Girls from Kingsmead College and JJC hosted guests from Fight with Insight and the Chaylill Foundation. Sharon Gordon engaged the girls in conversation about menstrual and sexual health. Girls made menstrual tracker bracelets and received a beautiful goodie bag.

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The Green Committee will be headed by Angela Norman-Smith. The current initiatives are:

  • Starting a succulent garden
  • Plastic recycling for the Owl Rescue Centre
  • Straw awareness campaign in the tuck shop


Grade 12 leaders organised a blanket collection as part of the Leaders’ Assembly and displayed true servant leadership by setting the example of Kingsmead’s Service slogan – Give without expecting reward.

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Upcoming events
Fight with Insight Inner City Run                 9 June
Winter Warmer Collection                             11-15 June
Night on the Garth                                           21 June
Make and Donate for Mandela Day              18 July
SANBS Blood Drive                                          31 July

Jenny Venter
Director of Service

The President’s Award


We were eager and excited when we departed for a five-day hike in the Vredefort Meteorite Dome during the April holidays. The hike was strenuous but absolutely amazing. There were lots of hilarious moments and many memories that we will cherish. Special friendships were formed with laughs around the campfire, card games and countless songs sang while hiking. We hiked in hot temperatures through rocky, mountainous terrain. Our hike included numerous spider webs, freezing cold water, long distances, steep hills and spectacular views.

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Annabel Davidson
Grade 10 Student

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