Netball Premier team season ends well

The Girls Premier Netball team have had an incredible season, making history by defeating teams they have never defeated before. They came away with 8 wins and 2 losses, moving into the Premier Final against a very strong Pukekohe High School Premier team. After a hard-fought match, they trailed by 4, placing second in the Counties Manukau Secondary School Competition but heads were certainly held high. Our new coach Kim told us at the beginning of the season ‘a happy team is a successful team’ and we are most certainly a happy and passionate team, excited for UNISS held at the Mount in early September, with the desire to continue striving for success whilst maintaining a gratifying netball environment.

2018 Talent Quest

Our three days of Talent Quest heats culminated in a final that really showcased the tremendous talents of our students.

First up was year 8 student, Minh Ho, with an electrifying guitar performance followed by year 7 Maddie Walker whose vocal performance of a classic musical was beautiful and vivacious. Bommi in year 13 with her hip hop choreography lit up the whole gym – she was very focused and is a super talented dancer! Following Bommi was Saara in year 8 who performed a very special traditional Indian dance. Her connection to the music was very moving and was felt through her whole performance. Next was ‘Washington Heights’ a group of students from year 10 to year 13 who performed a rap-style musical song about what they would do if they won the lottery. It was extremely entertaining! After that act was a trio of musicians who played their version of 21 Savages ‘Bank Account’. It was superbly unique and they are all very talented! Next up was Kaide who’s hip hop dancing was entertaining and full of enthusiasm, followed by Gianni with a touching and emotional song that she wrote herself. The last performance was Kyle in year 13 who played the electric guitar – another amazing performance.

While the judges deliberated we were treated to a very special guest performance from a few members of the teaching staff who entertained us with dancing, singing and a whole lot of laughing. It was a difficult decision, but the judges finally decided on their top four.

Congratulations go to the:
1st Place : Washington Heights
2nd Place Equal : Gianni-Mia Attrill-Dowling and Kyle Mahadevan
3rd Place : Kaide Toia

Well done to everyone who took part and a special thank you to the Student Council for organising the event and to the judges for their time.

Boys 1st XI Football

The 1st XI football boys have had a hard-fought season in the Counties-Manukau regional competition this year. Although the final result was not as rewarding as we had hoped for, it was evident on the playing field that significant progress has been made throughout the season by each individual to make an overall stronger, better-looking football unit.

Our season did not start to the standard we would have liked and we knew we were missing that little bit extra to change our game completely. After a series of team discussions, we came up with key aspects of the game we would work on. Once these problems were identified the quality of football we were playing increased drastically and is only continuing to increase as winter tournament week approaches.

Despite the exceptionally young team this year, the boys have shown a huge amount of courage and determination. I am very hopeful for the future of Strathallan boys’ football. We are all amped for the tournament and look forward to achieving the goals we have set.

Chinese Cultural Day

This week ACG Strathallan, ACG Parnell, and Te Hihi School gathered together in our School hall to celebrate Chinese Cultural day. After an opening speech to welcome the other schools and teachers, the ACG Strathallan Lion-dance team gave an enjoyable performance. We then got to see some other performances including the ACG Strathallan Fan-dance team and some Tai Ji. After that, the groups split up to start the activities which were all Chinese-themed. Some of us were tying infinity knots while others found themselves picking up beans with chopsticks and racing to the bean container. It was all very exciting. Evangeline Speedy from 6DRK said, “I really enjoyed Chinese Cultural day. I especially liked learning the basics of Tai Ji and how to do a Lion dance.” We found out that Tai Ji is the Chinese version of yoga and that a Lion Dance is actually performed by five people, not two. Overall, it was amazing getting to meet new students and instructors and it was a thoroughly enjoyable day.

Emmy Malins

Girl 1st XI Strathallan Hockey

The 1st XI Girls Hockey team has had an amazing season this year.

We started in term 2 with many returning players and several new, eager members ready to try the sport. Through regular training with our two coaches, John Litchfield and Anneke Wackrow, we developed our skills and learned how to work together. We had a series of challenging matches against schools from the Counties Manukau region and improved greatly, ending term 2 with a strong team.

During term 3 we continued to build on our skills then started to apply them to the game, scoring some impressive goals. Our results improved week after week and resulted in us placing 1st in the B Grade competition. It was a tough match ending with a draw of 2 all at full time, but the team pulled through after a long series of penalty shoot-outs to secure 1st place. This win was a sensation for everyone on the team. I am very proud of how well the girls have come together as a unit, on and off the field during this season.

Next week we go to our tournament in Stratford, Taranaki. There are eight other teams in the tournament and we play seven games over the five days. It is going to be a challenging and enjoyable week with the team keen to play some great hockey. The week will be a good chance to display the skills that we have acquired during the year and we expect to be a strong contestant in our pool. We are very excited to head down to Taranaki as it is the first time on a school tournament for many of the girls.

The team is looking forward to a thrilling tournament ahead.

Kayla Sinclair (Captain)

Girls First XI Football

Our First XI Girls Football team have put in the hard yards every game played in the 2018 season, earing many well-deserved results and finishing the season with 4 wins and 2 draws.

The team finished a very creditable second overall, coming away with plenty of battle scars. The girls will now attend winter tournament at Western Springs in September with the guidance of their amazing coach Scot who has been a huge support throughout the season.

1st XI Hockey

The boys 1st XI hockey team have made a strong start to their season with a number of well-deserved results. Playing in a highly competitive regional tournament with Pukekohe High, Waiuku College and Rosehill College, no game had a goal difference of more than four.

After playing six round-robin matches, the boys came away with three wins, two draws and only one loss. This placed them top of the table, in a great position for the play-offs. One remarkable achievement for the team was beating Pukekohe High in two consecutive games, something that Strathallan’s 1st XI has never done before. Rosehill College stepped up their game in a very tight semi-final match which tested the boy’s endurance, teamwork and stick-skills. Strathallan secured a 1-0 final score and were through to the finals against Pukekohe High.

Many supporters of both teams came to the turf to spectate the final contest, resulting in a very passionate atmosphere and a bit of nerves in the players. Both teams started the game very strongly. After the first ten minutes, Pukekohe’s left striker slotted the first goal, putting Strathallan on the back foot. Determined to equalise, the boys amped up their ability and began to dominate, keeping Pukekohe locking in their half. Going into half time with a 1-0 setback, the Strathallan boys deliberated on their performance and looked to maintain dominance in the second half. After a very strong second half, the boys were unable to score past a very talented Pukekohe High goalkeeper, despite taking a total of seven shots on goal.

Though their performance was incredible, the boys were disappointed to come away with a loss. The team still remain hopeful as they head into the top division of Midlands Intercity as well as their tournament in Rotorua in early September.

World Challenge

Three weeks ago, 19 of us headed off on an experience of a lifetime. We took part in the 2018 World Challenge trip to Uzbekistan and Kyrgyzstan. We travelled via China where we were in transit for 23 hours so took the opportunity to go to the Great Wall which was such an amazing experience – and we hadn’t even got to our main countries.

From there we started the adventure in Uzbekistan. We arrived in Tashkent and explored a bit and went to Chorzu Bazaar, which was a gorgeous market filled with wonderful smells and sounds – it was truly an all sensory experience. After that was our community phase where we joined the Asraf community, a tiny little paradise filled with plants and animals hidden behind desert mountains with the nicest community of people. There we helped build a small library inside the school and repainted the whole place. It was truly rewarding to be there and very hands-on. We also helped create a well for the villagers, as well as helping with all the food, which was amazing!!

Then we were off to the Silk Route cities. Our first stop was Bukhara where we saw the Arc and Kalon Mosque and minaret. Then to Samarkand, another beautiful city where we spent four amazing days exploring all the sights and we all fell in love.

We then took a 23-hour train ride, which was definitely an experience with all the border security stops, until finally arriving in Kyrgyzstan, the starting point for the trek phase of the expedition. After shopping for food for our tramp and filling four shopping trolleys to the brim, we headed off to the Ala Archa National Park which was absolutely gorgeous. The mountains were amazing. Our hut was up at 3300m and we went for small day walks to a glacier and the summit of one of the peaks (4600m). It was definitely a challenge for all of us but we pushed through and supported each other to achieve it together – a great sense of satisfaction. This was the final phase before we began the long journey home, happy to be seeing our friends and families again but sad to be leaving such an amazing place.

Our experiences over the past three weeks have left lasting impressions on us, changing us for better people, who have a wider understanding of others, other cultures and ourselves. It was a truly amazing, life-changing trip, which we would highly recommend to anyone toying with the idea of travel!

Art and Photography students go to Melbourne

On the 30th of June, the art and photography students departed from Auckland to Melbourne, on a trip we had all been waiting excitedly for all year. After arriving at Melbourne airport, we then checked into our hotel, ‘Best Western’, before we went out for lunch. Our first gallery to visit was the Australian Centre for the Moving Image, a national museum of film, video-games, digital culture and art. Here we were allowed to explore and see the different processes involved in film, as well as admire the architecture of the building. Afterwards, we went down the streets of Melbourne, visiting a streetwear shop called ‘Culture King’ that led to a roadside filled with graffiti art, including spray paint designs. After appreciating the pieces painted over the walls, as well as taking our photos, we rode a tram to Docklands to see the Firelight festival. For many of us, this was our first time riding a tram, the adventure to come excited me, even when we almost missed the tram on the way back from the festival. The celebration included food trucks, numerous musicians performing through the night and was located at the harbour giving us an opportunity to take in the beauty of Melbourne.

The next day, we visited the grand Melbourne Museum. The entrance held water fountains and various other beautiful pieces of modern architecture, providing an ethereal view and already making the museum intriguing, yet our journey had just begun. The museum included exhibitions unlike anything we’d ever seen, such as ‘The Mind’, an exhibit which displayed how your mind and other factors in your body work. One exhibit that I found particularly interesting was the one which displayed creative content from young artists, such as films, app designs and labels for their companies. After that we went on a walk to the Centre for Contemporary Photography, lucky enough to have a guided tour. The photography shown was fascinating, especially as the photographs each held their own story which was displayed in the exhibition in their own unique ways. A long day of walking and visiting the galleries was now over and we decided to take a break in our hotel rooms before we set out once again, this time onto a Yarra River Dinner Cruise. The view on the boat was breathtaking and we enjoyed the company of each other over dinner.

We visited another gallery on the third day, this time the National Gallery of Victoria where we were lucky enough to see the ‘MoMA’ exhibition of modern and contemporary art, including artists such as Pablo Picasso, Andy Warhol and Umberto Boccioni. After viewing the artwork in the exhibition, we were transported to the Docklands Shopping Mall where we split up and explored what seemed to be an endless mall. When we re-grouped, we went on the Melbourne Star Observation Wheel. I was anxious for this as I have a deadly fear of heights, but the view we saw above was so worth it. Dinner came and went and we were fortunate enough to visit CAVES, an artist-run gallery space afterwards. This was an interesting experience because previously we had seen large galleries which were state-owned however, this gallery was owned by two artists rather than provided for, making our visit here very inspiring and educational. We had hot chocolate and coffee afterwards while reflecting on the places we had been that day.

Then came our last day. We spent it walking around the city, before splitting off into smaller groups to explore the shops and what Melbourne had to offer. We re-grouped at 2pm, most of our arms holding shopping bags, to be taken back to the airport after checking out of the hotel. We were all so appreciative for the opportunity we had to visit Melbourne and are especially grateful to our teachers Mrs Palmer and Mrs Manuel who had taken time out of their holiday to give us this once in a lifetime opportunity. Until next time Melbourne!


Please Sir, can we have some more?

That was certainly the feeling of last night’s audience after watching the College production of Oliver!

Very ably directed by Mrs Stafford-Bush, the students transported us to the Dickensian world of Oliver Twist in a wonderful display of acting, singing and dancing.

There were many stand-out performances: from Libby Murphy’s moving portrayal of Nancy to Patrick Cheeseman’s infamous pickpocket Fagin, and of course, the ill-treated orphan Oliver Twist himself, played by Year 7 student Thomas Tilsley. However, the character who had many of our younger actors and audience members trembling in fear was Bill Sikes, played by Angus Cameron who oozed malevolence and cruelty.

It was a wonderful production and congratulations must go to the cast, crew and musicians for turning their months of rehearsing into such a fine performance.