Dear Kingsmead Community,
Our Matrics are well into writing their Final Exams and I am again struck by just how resilient these students have been this year and by how every teacher has supported them over this time. They are still coming to the campus daily to receive voluntary extra tuition and there are workshops given by staff over the weekends. We do have an extraordinary teaching staff and I know that the Matrics are well prepared for their exams.
It was my pleasure to welcome the new Grade 8s for 2021 to our campus last Saturday morning to a slightly different orientation. Mr Allen gave a superb, in-depth explanation of the Growth Curriculum to the parents; the Executive explained their roles and we introduced the student executive team. Ammaarah Waddee gave her first speech as the Head Girl for 2021 and it was inspiring. I was so proud to be a part of this progressive, excellent and nurturing school. It certainly reaffirmed for me that our purpose and values are in place for the year ahead. I am also looking forward to working with our strong Grade 12 leaders next year.
“Good morning parents, teachers and most importantly good morning Grade 8s of 2021.
I remember this day. 4 years ago. Feet barely touching the floor, yet feeling all grown up. Feeling nervous, a feeling that is absolutely normal, but also feeling a sense of excitement. It’s official, you are in high school. Today is all about YOU. Welcome to your Grade 8 Orientation, I hope today is nothing but enlightening and enjoyable.
One can think of the Kingsmead Senior School as a family. When you are born into a family, you have no idea who these people around you are, prompting you to crawl and say your first words. And I certainly don’t remember what was going through my head when I was a baby, but I am pretty sure we were all taken aback by the unfamiliar faces around us as well as the new world we were just born into, and that was NORMAL. The start of Grade 8 will be just like coming into a family. New teachers, new faces in the corridors, new friends and new experiences: the start of a fresh beginning. And while that may be extremely daunting, I guarantee you that by the end of your Grade 8 year, you would have built a family, here at school. Those of you who attended different junior schools, may have looked around today and not recognized a single other person in this room. And that’s okay too. Because apart of this experience, is to build friendships and establish sisterhood with the girls around you. The strangers you see around you today, will be your family for the next 5 years.
One thing I love about Kingsmead is how connected this family is. Think of every student in every grade, Grade 8 to matric, think of every teacher and every staff member, these people will become your friends, your mentors and your pillar of support throughout the years. Next year you will be introduced to your Grade 9 sister. Your Grade 9 sister will guide you through your year, providing you with all the support you need. You will also meet your Grade 12 buddy. A few of us are here today to have some fun with you guys. Your Grade 12 buddy will be like the cool older sister who will be there for you throughout the year. Come to speak to us, pop us a message, chat to us at break. We are here for you, 5 years of doing this and I think its safe to say we have a few pieces of advice and it would be our honour to offer them to you. You will also be introduced to your form captains, these Grade 12s will spend time with you in your register class a few times every week, building a relationship with you. We are here to support you, to guide you, to laugh with you, to stress with you and to enjoy the year with you. Settling in seems daunting, but I know you guys will not only settle in, but FLOURISH at the Kingsmead Senior School.
There are SO many things waiting for you at Kingsmead. Sports clubs, music bands, arts teams and various committees await your arrival. Take up as much as you’d like, enjoy it, savour it. Inter-house activities are itching to see your spirit and enthusiasm. It doesn’t get better than this. So make the most of it. And if you ever get butterflies in your tummy, know that there is always going to be a member of your Kingsmead family, ready to guide you and shoo away those butterflies. Seeing you here today, amongst you my little sister Mahdiyyah, reminds me of the grade I grew up with. We sat here 4 years ago, completely bamboozled by the new faces around us. And today we stand as Matrics of 2021. From a grade to a family and I hope for that same potential growth within you.
So yes, you are about to dive into uncharted waters. And yes at times it might feel like sink or swim, and not all of us swim immediately but one thing Kingsmead can promise, is that this family will chuck you a life jacket, so sinking is not an option. And once you get the hang of swimming, its going to be better than the best swim you can imagine.
I look forward to a beautiful 2021 with you”.
Head Girl 2021
As we wait to see the outcome of the US Presidential Elections next week, I quote from Joe Biden’s Vice-Presidential nominee, Kamala Harris, who herself has made history:
“What I want young women and girls to know is: You are powerful and your voice matters. You’re going to walk into many rooms in your life and career where you may be the only one who looks like you or who has had the experiences you’ve had. But you remember that when you are in those rooms, you are not alone. We are all in that room with you applauding you on. Cheering your voice. And just so proud of you. So you use that voice and be strong.”
I wish all our students writing exams in the next while, every success.
Executive Head: Kingsmead College
The Kingfishers Awards, a module which aims to mirror the advertising depth of the Loerie Awards, is an annual English department and Growth Curriculum initiative. Supplemented by the subjects of Visual Arts; Computer Literacy; Music and Economic Management and Sciences, this year the term-long module continues to reap the rewards of the Grade 9 Growth Curriculum. Students were treated to two workshops featuring the dynamic duo of Steph Mazingi and Kholofelo Mamabolo, an art director and copywriter respectively from ‘TBWA’ The Disruption Company.
In the first online workshop presentation, Steph and Kholofelo provided the students with an overview of some of the current advertising campaigns that they have worked on over the past few years. In a secondary “live” Question and Answer session, students had the opportunity to engage with Steph and Kholofelo by submitting questions and drawing on their experience as Loerie judges. This year’s Kingfisher theme asked students to advertise “Greta Thunberg wishes…” in teams, reflecting on the four primary categories of saving water; paper; electricity and reducing carbon emissions. The process saw students: design and animate a logo; pitch their idea as a proposal; conceptualise and present a storyboard; create a jingle; as well as film and edit their own advertisement.
Their final products were judged externally, and students were able to receive awards in a number of categories at the online Kingfisher Awards. The awards were hosted via Zoom, on Thursday 29 October. There were a number of interesting and exciting submissions, and a broad range of winners across the different categories. The category of “Best Overall Advertisement” was jointly awarded to Team 3 – Julia Aspoas; Hannah Jadwat and Margot Covary and Team 14 – Sameeha Gangat and Berlynn Williams. The judges felt that these two adverts communicated their message impactfully through creative and innovative visual storytelling. The winning teams are congratulated on their achievement. The module team would like to thank Ms Sue Grealy, Ms Stephanie Mazingi and Ms Kholofelo Mamabolo for judging this year’s entries.
Best Overall Advert Winners: Team 3 – Hannah Jadwat (absent), Julia Aspoas and Margot Covary and Team 14 – Sameeha Gangat and Berlynn Williams.
Senior School Visual Art and English teacher
All the debaters’ hard work in 2020 culminated in participating in the online Gauteng Provincial Debating Tournament on 10 and 11 October. Elizabeth Hakizimana and Sumayya Forssman participated as the Kingsmead Junior Debating team. Out of 6 debates, they won 2, while competing as a team of 2 against teams of 5, which is an impressive achievement.
Elizabeth said of the experience: “My debating experience was the best. For my first year of debating, I could not have asked for a better team. It was a fun process and I do think more people should participate in debating”.
Sumayya’s thoughts: “Provincials was really challenging since we were a 2 man team but in the end, it was worth the experience and I learned many things.”
Congratulations to the team for their commitment and dedication!
This term the public speakers were raring to get involved again. Besides the weekly online meetings, the term will culminate in the Kingsmead Best Speaker competition. This event gave each student the opportunity to state their case to prove themselves as the best junior or senior speaker. Well done to all our speakers for their courage to participate in this event. Congratulations to our Top speakers:
1st place: Sameeha Gangat – Best Junior Speaker
2nd place: Hannah Daniels
3rd place: Hameeda Malik
Although this year has been taxing in more ways than one, throughout it all, the public speakers have remained positive and enthusiastic. They are commended for their continued commitment.
One of our talented young musicians is already making waves in the music industry! Click below to read about Mokgethoa Tebeila’s musical endeavours. We are proud of you, Mokgethoa!
Visit the Kingsmead Arts & Music YouTube https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCgawJfH5dA5GXvZC3EHAmGg/featured?view_as=subscriber to see our ‘Concerts in the Lounge’ and everything we have been getting up to!
Director of Arts & Music
Since lockdown level 1 was implemented, Phase two of sport has allowed us to do more localized sport such as swimming, tennis, and ball sports with no contact.
The Sports department were making sure that they allow all students the opportunity to improve their current fitness and muscle strength both in class lessons and after school.
After the announcement from the GDE two weeks ago of the return to physical training, SPORT has become a great stress reliever for the students.
We have managed to getswimming, waterpolo, diving, tennis and squash back to full training. A great thank you to all the coaches for stepping in at the last minute.
Congratulations to Ameera Adam for receiving her Central Gauteng colours for Acrosport! We wish her everything of the best in Nationals at the end of November.
We aim to prepare all the students for competition in Term 1 of 2021.
Director of Sport
Grade 8 Love Jozi Module
This term the Grade 8s are learning about the History of Johannesburg in the Love Jozi module.
As part of their History task, each student was tasked with conducting an interview with a family member from both sides of their family. This was part of their Heritage Task where the aim was to understand how they came to live in Johannesburg. It was such a pleasure reading each student’s task and learning more about them and their families. From coming to South Africa as an indentured labourer to running away from their home in Britain. Each student had their own unique story.
Qaylah Choonara’s Family Story
From Itu, Brazil, Bombay, India to Johannesburg, South Africa. This is how my family first ended up in Johannesburg. In 1984 my dad’s father, Ahmed Choonara came from Itu, Brazil to Standerton, Mpumalanga for further career opportunities and worked as a salesman in a paint company. In 1985 the rest of his family joined him. A few years later they moved to Azaadville in the West Rand and besides my dad all of his family members still live there today. In 2000 after my mom and dad got married, my dad moved to Johannesburg to start his business. When he first moved, he lived in the suburb of Fordsburg with my mom and when first arriving he worked as a dentist before starting his own practice as an orthodontist and moving to Greenside. My mom’s family arrived in Johannesburg centuries before my dad’s. In 1879 my great, great, great grandfather came from Bombay, India to Durban via Maputo as a young man. He had visited and started large companies in countries like Seychelles, Mauritius and Reunion Island and came to Durban, South Africa with the same intentions, however after a few years he left South Africa and went back to Kolvid, India, where he was born. In 1904/1907 he came back to South Africa and started living in Vrededorp, he then opened a grocery store on 17th street and started buying out the buildings in Fietas (14th street) to leave for the next generation of his family. My grandmother and her siblings grew up there, as well as my grandfather’s family and my great grandfather along with his brothers run the shops there. After the apartheid government declared Fietas as a white area and the shops were bulldozed my mom’s family moved to Lenasia. In the late 90’s and early 2000’s they started moving to Greenside and opened up a family run Shell garage and ice-cream factory. To this day my mom’s family lives in Greenside, Johannesburg, and some of my dad’s family have started moving here as well.
Kate Chapman’s Family Story
My dad, Warren Chapman, was born in in Vereeniging along with his sister. My late grandfather sadly passed away when my dad was 13. In 1978 my Dad, his sister and his mom moved to Johannesburg as my gran needed to look for a job. They lived in Bedfordview when they first moved to Johannesburg. My granny’s first job in Johannesburg was a medical sales rep. My dad went to KES and was a boarder and my aunt went to Jeppe Girls. Now my dad, mom, brother, sister and my dad’s mum all live in Johannesburg and my aunt, my uncle and my cousin live in the UK. There is no place I would rather be than in Johannesburg! My great grandfather on my mom’s side moved to Johannesburg in 1922. He moved from Scotland and had not lived anywhere else in South Africa. He moved to Johannesburg because after World War Two (1918) there was a Great Depression in Scotland and Africa was the land of opportunity. He traveled through Africa and decided to settle in Johannesburg. He lived in Parkview when he first moved here. He started his own business which was very successful. He was in office equipment and his business was called Mathieson and Ashly. My Grandfather is very much a Scotty, he loves whiskey, he is very hairy and has orange hair (no wonder I have such hairy arms). Now my grandpa and granny live just around the corner from us, and we love Johannesburg.
Zinziswa Mlomempi’s Family Story
As a single mom with 5 kids, she had no other option but to go to the “City of Gold”, to raise her kids. Patricia Mazala my mom’s older sister (my aunt), was the first one in my mom’s family to come to Johannesburg. She previously lived in the Eastern Cape, with her husband and her 5 children, in a small but very rural town called Matatiele. At the age of 26 she experienced the devastating loss of her husband and was forced to take care of all her 5 kids by herself, so she came up with a plan that she would have to find a job in Johannesburg, and at the age of 29 (1990) she left her kids with her mom (my grandmother) and moved to Johannesburg, to start her job looking adventure. When she arrived in Johannesburg she lived with her aunt, who at the time was working as a domestic worker in Melrose. It was really hard for her to find a job because she couldn’t speak English. Eventually she found a job at a restaurant and, she worked there for 2 years before finding a new job. She has worked many jobs over the past few years and eventually she settled as a domestic worker in Parktown, which is where she currently works. She has been working for 6 years there. She is now 57 and has decided to retire. She had a hard experience and overall worked hard for everything. She is a very inspirational woman and that is why she is one of my role models.
Kira King’s Family Story
Johannesburg, a city with a lot of energy, lightning and thunderstorms that feed that energy. My dad was born in Durban and moved all around the country mostly for work as an advertising trainee. He lived in Pretoria and Cape Town and then came to Johannesburg in 1987 only for 9 months, but that then became 33 years and counting. My father arrived in this vibrant city and never left. He was the first person in his family to come live here and still is the only one. At first, he lived in Yeoville and worked as a producer and moved into the house we live in now. He has lived in the same house for 26 years, the same house I have known and loved all my life. My mom was also the first person in her family to move to Johannesburg in 1994. She was born in Rustenburg then lived close to Ventersdorp and at the age of seven moved to Pretoria. Later on, in her life she joined a company called Delapse where she was a producer. They relocated their offices from Pretoria to Johannesburg and so she also moved her home. She first lived in Norwood and then met my dad. Johannesburg has not only been this vibrant, migrant city, but also the city in which my dad and mom met and a city I call home.
Drama and Music Workshops
On Monday 21 and Wednesday 23 September, the Grade 8 Love Jozi groups participated in Music and Drama workshops in preparation for their self-written monologue video project.
In the Music workshop, they learned about underscoring: the music that plays quietly under spoken dialogue or a visual scene. They will be choosing the appropriate instrumental music to underscore and establish the mood and theme of their video project.
The Drama workshop focused on exciting acting games that were designed to encourage the students to participate actively in the process of building characters for their monologues. Some of the skills and facets of acting explored in the workshop included:
- Embodying different characters through movement
- Ensemble work
- Confidence in front of an audience
Both workshops were enriching opportunities and of tremendous value to the girls and we look forward to their final video projects at the end of this term.
Rango Phogole and Ashlea Martin
Drama and Music Teachers
Thank you to everyone for their participation in Goodwill Week.
Goodwill Week highlights included:
- A Conscious Fashion Virtual Exhibition raised awareness for sustainable, conscious and ethical fashion habits;
- 1.4 tons of clothing donated to Clothes To Good;
- 530 toys were made from recycled clothing for the Clothes to Play programme (these toys will be donated to ECD centres in Diepsloot);
- 78 flower crowns and packets of vegetable seeds were donated to Sefokeng Primary school;
- 52 books were creatively adapted into sensory books for Adapt-a-Book and donated to Sunshine Association;
- 42 000 meals were packed at the Rise Against Hunger meal packing event;
- 108 people participated in Walk for Good and R12550 was raised for the Kingsmead Trust;
- 46 units of blood were donated at the SANBS Goodwill Blood Drive;
- 17 paintings were sold in the Show of Courage Virtual Arts Exhibition in support of Courage Child Protection;
- The Grade 12s donated 3 trees, many succulents and beautiful stepping stones with their names on to the Kingsmead gardens.
A special thank you to every student and every family member who participated and gave generously of their time, creativity and resources to make a difference in our community.
Director of Service
Goodwill Day Blood Drive
On 7 October, Kingsmead College had its’ annual Goodwill Day Blood Drive. This blood drive has a reputation of being the busiest and biggest of the year, unfortunately due to the Coronavirus Pandemic an event could not be held, and it seemed as though people would not be willing to donate. Even in times like this, people still need blood. An accident could happen to anyone at any time – and at this point many people are so reluctant I wonder if we have enough. As a Peer Promoter, I felt saddened at this thought, but this feeling was quickly pushed away by our outstanding Kingsmead Community. Sister Monica had set a goal of around 30 units – this standard was too low. Throughout the day, donors flooded the pathway to the Grade 7 common room (whilst maintaining social distancing, of course). 58 donors were presented, and unfortunately 12 were differed. This brings us to a total of 46 donors; however, these numbers are not a true reflection of the amount of people who were keen to donate blood. Between the free time students had to donate and the three beds used for donation, it became almost impossible to take all donors. This reaffirms that people don’t donate because of the incessant reminders, incredible SANBS freebies or the rewards that schools provide. People donate because they are passionate, there is an energy within Kingsmead College and SANBS that shows that good needs to be done. As a Peer Promoter in Grade 11, my last active year of being involved in organising blood drives. Here are a few words from my fellow Peer Promoters.
“The days before the blood drive were spent preparing all the little goodies for the donors. The day of the blood drive was a very eventful and exciting day for many people, especially those who had been waiting many years to donate and were finally given the chance. The outcome of the blood drive was excellent, and we gathered many more blood bags than expected. For me the blood drive was very enlightening, I learnt a lot about how the donation process works and was able to be there to comfort my friends. I cannot wait for the next drive!” – Aliza (Grade 10)
“As peer promoters we try our best to encourage as many donors as we can, and this October our efforts really paid off. To our delight we had many new donors, which really charged the atmosphere at the venue. There was a sense of calmness, nervousness and excitement all in the air at once. We are really grateful to every person who came to donate blood, and definitely acknowledge their ability to really give of themselves. Thank you for helping SANBS really keep the blood pumping.” – Tayyeba
“Being apart of the peer promoter team has been a memorable Kingsmead experience. My highlight was visiting the blood labs. “ – Maxine (Grade 11)
“I’m so glad I decided to step up in coordinating our last blood drive of the year. It was truly a heartwarming experience and I hope to see a lot of people donating next year.” – Inhle
I would like to plea to SANBS, please be more prepared for our generous community next year. But I would also like to thank my mentor, Sister Monica, my team who really helped as much as they could and this beautiful school that tried their best to donate. Thank you for not letting life get in the way of life.
Grade 11 Student