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In this issue

Gawura News
Key dates
Message from our Wellbeing Coordinator
Music news
Sports news
Library news
Heart Mind Life Uniform Awards
Parenting tips
What's happening in the Art Space?
Random acts of Kindness
Bebras Computational Thinking
University of Wollongong Learning Labs
What's on: upcoming events and activities

Gawura News


I have previously mentioned our school’s involvement in the Waratah Project. We are one of 30 other AIS schools around the state that were selected to participate in this wonderful project. Each school is part of 5 other schools within a Hub. The Hub Schools meet within their own network usually 2 – 3 times a year but there is a once a term meeting where all 30 schools meet state wide. Last Thursday 27 October and Friday 28 October saw all 30 schools meet at the Macleay Vocational College in Kempsey for 2 days of professional learning involving cultural and academic learning.

The cultural activities included a Welcome to Country by Dunghutti Elders at South West Rocks including seeing the Kinchela Boys Home in Kempsey. We also had a very moving presentation by staff from the Kinchela Boys Home with a former resident giving a detailed recount of what happened during his time there. The Kinchela Boys Home operated in Kempsey from 1924 to 1970. Representatives from all schools who attended were very moved with the presentation. Aunty Pam Widders our Aboriginal Education Mentor-Secondary attended both days. We have plans to share some of the presentation during a Cultural Awareness session to all SACS and Gawura staff during one of our professional development days when staff return in mid-January.  This truth telling and truth sharing will be very insightful for all staff to be aware of.

We are mid-way through term 4 and there are many activities still to occur as we approach the end of the school year. Please keep an eye on the Dates to Remember section so that you can see what they are and when they will occur.

I wish you all a very happy and safe fortnight ahead.

Mr John Ralph 
Head of Gawura


Key dates

Tuesday 1 November, 6pm
P&F Presents: Co-curricular

Friday 4 November
Year 3 excursion to Chinese Gardens
Infants swimming

Monday 7 November
Kindergarten 2023 Playdate

Friday 11 November
Infants swimming

Monday 14 November
Coffee in Chapter House – Year 6 parents 
Year 5 Botanical Gardens excursion

Thursday 17 – Friday 18 November
Year 6 Lolly Bag Fundraiser

Friday 18 November
Infants swimming

Saturday 19 November, 5pm
P&F Rooftop Christmas Markets


Message from our Wellbeing Coordinator


Service Learning

How do you use your time, talents and treasures?

Service learning is about encouraging our students to put their time, talents and treasure into action for the service of others, particularly living out our St Andrew's Cathedral School Character Strengths and Christian care for those around us. Throughout Junior School and Gawura this term each class is engaging in a service learning project.

Our Kindy and Stage 1 students are exploring the character strength of Grateful with a focus on their family and school. They will be making cards of gratitude to share with people who they have been supported by, as well as Christmas chains to decorate our learning spaces.

Our Stage 2 students will be exploring the character strength of Caring with a focus on their community. They will be coordinating the annual Anglicare Toys and Tucker appeal throughout the Junior School and Gawura. There is further information below about how you can contribute to this appeal.

Our Stage 3 students will be exploring the character strength of Servant-hearted with a focus on their world. They will be creating Christmas gift tags to sell at a stall run by the SRC to raise money for Anglican Aid’s Adjumani refugee school in Uganda. There is further information below about how you can support this stall.

Why don’t you ask your child about the character strengths they are developing as they use their time, talents and treasures to make a difference?


Anglican Aid Christmas Stall

As part of our service-learning programme in SEW, our Stage 3 students will be making and selling Christmas gift tags to raise money for a Adjumani refugee school in Uganda through Anglican Aid.

Our students would love you to come along to our stall and support this cause by purchasing some gift tags for your Christmas presents, made by our wonderful Stage 3 students!!

*Our SRC students will be running the stall for the tags that Year 5 and 6 have made .

  • Dates: Thursday 24 and Friday 25 November
  • Time: 3.00pm-3.30pm (after school)
  • Location: Outside the foyer in the Square

Toys & Tucker appeal

Our school will again be collecting for the annual Toys & Tucker appeal to create hampers for families in need at this time. As part of making the hampers consistent and relevant to the needs, Anglicare has provided us with a hamper list.

If you are shopping please consider adding some of these items to your trolley and bringing them in for our collection. Our Year 3 and 4 students will be leading the organisation and promotion of Toys & Tucker across our whole Junior School and Gawura, as part of their Service Learning activity. Collection boxes will be in each classroom. If you would prefer to choose a new toy to donate, some ideas are below.

If you would like further information about this project please contact myself or go to:


Mrs​​ Bronwyn Wake
Junior School & Gawura Well‑Being Coordinator and Psychologist/Counsellor


Music news



Congratulations to Brandon Cheung who performed in a masterclass with Caron Chan, Chief Strings Examiner of the AMEB, violinist with the Opera Australia Orchestra, and respected pedagogue. Brandon performed beautifully and was able to learn so much in a short amount of time. Thank you to Ms Sandi Oh for organising this excellent event.

Music practice
As we approach the end of the year, I have spoken to a number of parents who are finding it hard to do music practice at home. Exams are done for the year in some instances, and it is hard to fit it all in, particularly now that more and more of the pre-covid activities are happening again and families are becoming busier. Please know that you are not alone! Music is a challenging and abstract subject. The benefits it has on the brain are being more and more widely understood, and more research continues to emerge on this.

Please know you are doing your child a great service by enrolling them in music lessons and supporting their learning in this area. The rewards often come after the work is done. There is a level of discomfort in music learning where students have to learn resilience as they work on a section of a piece and find strategies to problem solve to learn that section, that bar, or to work out which string to play a note on in a particular context (just as an example). But how do we help them get there? How can parents support practice at home? Here is a short list of ideas. I hope to talk to this topic in more depth next year, but for now, here are some tips:

  1. Be there! If you have not learned music, that is ok! Many parents feel that they need a strong knowledge of music to help their child with their practice at home. It is more helpful if you are there to support. Check in with them. Ask them to think about what their tutor would recommend or what they would think of the way they just played whatever it was they were practising. The idea is to ensure they are consciously working on the task the tutor has set them.
  2. Break a piece down into chunks. Work on it slowly and know that it can take weeks to learn a piece confidently. Look for patterns. When they have learned a certain section, try to see if there is any repetition. Does that section return? Sometimes students learn a section of a piece, think they have only learned a third of it and then on closer investigation, the section comes back at the end, leaving only the middle part to learn!
  3. Practise correctly but slowly. If a section or piece is repeated many times in an incorrect way, the student will recall it incorrectly and it will take much longer to fix.
  4. Use the practice diary and communicate regularly with your music tutor if you are unsure of things.
  5. Ask the tutor if you can visit a lesson, or if they can send you a video of what they are looking for in the piece so that you have a clear idea of what your child should be working on at home.
  6. Persist! When the lightbulb moment comes, it is all worthwhile!

Please feel free to email me at to discuss your child’s music education at any time.

Mrs​ Kate Robertson
Head of Music (K‑6)


Sports news



What an incredible achievement it is to make the NSW PSSA! Ziyra Wilcoxen (6B) and Orsen Gavanga (6M) both qualified at the CIS carnival and competed 19-20 October in the NSW PSSA U13s 100m race.

Both students ran incredibly well in their heats, semi-finals and in their finals! All Year 6 students and teachers are very proud of them and loved watching them compete across the two days.

Ziyra placed 5th and Orsen placed 7th.

Congratulations to both students and their families!

Miss​ Annique Botta
Junior School Teacher


Library news


State Library of NSW

Last term I attended an information evening for Teacher Librarians at the State Library of NSW. The education learning team at the library develops exhibitions, units of work, virtual excursions and onsite excursions to support the school curriculum. We were taken on a guided tour of their new family friendly exhibition Imagine, which celebrates some of the wonderful picture books produced by Australian authors and illustrators over the years. I was very impressed by the motivated, knowledgeable and passionate team who we are blessed to have in very close proximity to our school.

This term a couple of grades will support their English and Geography programmes with an onsite excursion at the library.

As the holidays draw near can I encourage you to visit the State Library. Keep an eye on their website (links below) for the holiday programme opportunities which are always lots of fun for the whole family.

Imagine Link

What's On Link

Deborah Bennett
Teacher Librarian


Heart Mind Life Uniform Awards



Click here for the latest Heart, Mind, Life & Uniform awards.


Parenting tips


How to discipline your child: Top 3 positive parenting techniques

This is a great article by American nationally recognised parenting expert, Amy McCready. She is the Founder of Positive Parenting Solutions and the best selling author of The “Me, Me, Me” Epidemic - A Step-by-Step Guide to Raising Capable, Grateful Kids in an Over-Entitled World and If I Have to Tell You One More Time…The Revolutionary Program That Gets Your Kids to Listen Without Nagging, Reminding or Yelling. As a “recovering yeller” and a Certified Positive Discipline Instructor, Amy is a champion of positive parenting techniques for happier families and well-behaved children.

Enjoy the read and hopefully be encouraged by her advice.

“It’s the age-old question, isn’t it? For generations, parents worldwide have debated the most effective parenting methods.

What is the goal of discipline?

Disciplining, as opposed to punishing, is all about training. It is the idea that we want to guide, instruct, inform and teach our children HOW to behave instead of punishing them for misbehaving. The goal of discipline isn’t short-sighted – it isn’t specific to one problem area.

The goal of discipline is a long-term objective.

The daily goal of discipline is to have your children learn from their mistakes and not repeat them. Unfortunately, most parents have only been taught short-term solutions.

As I mentioned before, we often equate the term “discipline” with “punishment.”

“Punish” comes from the Latin root punir which means “to chastise, take vengeance for, inflict a penalty on, cause pain for some offense.”

But the word “discipline” comes from the Latin word disciplina, which means “to teach, to guide, to instruct.”

That’s the key to correcting our children’s behaviours – giving them the tools they need to learn an alternative POSITIVE behaviour to replace the negative behaviour.

When we punish with the intent to have the child “pay” for their mistake, it doesn’t help them learn how to make a better choice next time. Punishment often leads to power contest, and because our children know poor behaviour gets them attention, they’ll keep doing it. 

1. Fill the attention basket
Children need attention, plain and simple. If we don’t keep that “attention basket” full with positive attention, children will seek out any attention they can get – even negative attention. They’ll push our buttons with negative behaviours because to a child, even negative attention is a “deposit” in the attention bucket.

This doesn’t mean you have to be at your child’s side 24/7 – just taking a few minutes a day to spend one-on-one with your child, distraction-free and doing something they want to do, will reap immense rewards in their behaviour.

Take 10 minutes once or twice a day with each child and play a game they’ve picked or read their favourite book. Let the phone go to voicemail. Don’t respond to the text. Let the dishes sit in the sink.

When you fill your children’s attention baskets positively and proactively, your children will become more cooperative and less likely to seek out attention in negative ways.

Life is busy for everyone, and finding extra time in the day may be daunting at first, but think of this as an investment in your relationship with your children and in improving their behaviour.

When it comes to knowing how to discipline your child, giving them what they need to avoid poor behaviours in the first place can have a great impact.

2. Take time for training
As you think about how to discipline your child, it’s important to remember the root meaning of the word – teach, instruct, guide, inform. The best way to discipline your child is to help them make better choices by teaching them the correct behaviour or response.

Role-playing is a great way to do this. For example, if your child is having trouble sharing and this results in them hitting another child, instead of whisking them away to time-out, diffuse the situation and show them the appropriate way to respond. “I’d really like to play with that tractor when you’re done.” Or if your child is throwing a tantrum because they are hungry, give them the appropriate language to use, “I’d like a snack, please.”
Don’t expect your child to respond appropriately after one round of role-playing. But practice makes progress and progress makes more peace in your home.

Lastly, be encouraging when your children make the right choices – or even show ANY movement in the right direction. “I see you worked hard to clean up the playroom all on your own! That’s such a big help. I really appreciate it.” or “Thank you for sharing the book with your brother. How kind!”

3. Set limits and stick to them
With the busyness that plagues families today, it can be difficult to be consistent in your daily schedules. But the reality is, children thrive when they have structure and know their boundaries. When the expectations are clearly communicated in advance, children have a framework to work within.

This doesn’t mean you need to go overboard with hundreds of rules, but focus on what’s most important for your family. Be clear about the ground rules and what happens when someone breaks the rules – make sure that everyone understands the consequences ahead of time and that the discipline is related to the misbehaviour.

If they refuse to adhere to your technology time limits, they lose their technology privileges for the next day or week (depending on the age).

Above all, be consistent. Follow through every time with the agreed-upon consequence when children push the rules."

I hope you enjoyed this article. I think it is very grounded and practical, in that the things suggested, are possible.

Joy Rohrlach
Year 5 Leader


What's happening in the Art Space?


Service Learning – Year 7 and 8 working with Junior School and Gawura students

During Term 4, we’ve been able to welcome 20 Year 7 and 8 students to the Art Space to support and assist with our learning and work. These students have been a joy! Our Year 4 students have particularly enjoyed their time with the older students – discussing tasks, making decisions about processes in their work and generally having fun building new relationships.


Young Andrean Artist of the Year Competition 2022

This Competition has now closed and we await the judges decision for Winners and Highly Commended pieces. However, I’ve had the opportunity to look through all the entries and I’m impressed! I’d like to commend all the artists who contributed an artistic piece to the competition this year – there were a large number of entries, with unique and creative ideas turned into wonderful art!  As a sneak preview, there are a few unique pieces pictured above (left to right):

Gabe M (Year 4)The People of Israel leaving Egypt across the Red Sea (Tapestry)

Zac C (Year 4)Queen Nefertiti’s Palace (Drawing in Pencil)

Billie C (KJ) – My Egyptian Family (Collage)

Mrs​ Miriam Daly
Visual Arts Integrator JS&G


Looking for a family exhibition to visit?

Sculpture by the Sea – 21 October to 7 November

Enjoy a family walk along the 2km Bondi to Tamarama coastal walk, whilst stopping to take in the eye-catching art installations.

Wildlife Photographer of the Year

Australian National Maritime Museum,
Darling Harbour Until 5 Mar 2023




Junior School Theatresports riding high

Making your way from St Andrew's Cathedral School to St Patrick’s in Strathfield may seem like a long way to go just to make stuff up, but the Junior School Theatresports team of Violet Bloxsom, Ili Karan, Meera Joshi, Rafferty McGonigle and Lucas Shi did just that on Monday afternoon, to begin their campaign to retain the Primary Schools Theatresports Schools Challenge Eastern Division trophy.

Playing the first match of a tournament is always nerve-wracking and having to play the first game of that first match is doubly so, but our team took to the stage with boundless confidence and kicked off the round with a solid Slow-Motion Commentary involving the construction of a brick wall. Round 2 saw the team hit their stride with a hilarious Stunt Doubles scene exploring the complications of making toast, while Round 3 saw the team finish off the night with a delightful Pop-Up Storybook around a bout of fisticuffs between an outback explorer and a laconic wombat (while the less-than-impressed wombat’s wife did her nails). If it all sounds too silly to be true, then that’s what Theatresports is all about. As marvellously as our team played, their rivals weren’t about to let them run away with the match, and they finished the night on equal first with the team from Newton Public School.

The team now faces the final, a home match being played:

Tuesday 8 November, 6pm
Chapter House
Cost: Adults $10; Students $5

The match starts at 6pm sharp and tickets are available at the door.

Congratulations to the team, coaches Cameron Ryan and Will Torney, and a big thank you to Mr Murray for all his support and encouragement.

SACS Pride!
David Callan


Random acts of Kindness


In Term 3, the SRC cast their minds and hearts outward to the schools of northern NSW, who have been affected by flooding over recent years and months. The SRC developed a fundraiser, where students had to complete “Random Acts of Kindness” around their homes and communities. Upon completion, students would be sponsored for each act of kindness, to raise money to be given to the Australian Independent Schools Fund Flood Appeal.

Our Junior School and Gawura raised a total of $250 which has been sent to the AISF. Thank you and well done to all who participated!

A Special mention goes out to Giorgio Follino-Gallo (Year 1), who has been actively undertaking acts of kindness since 2020. Through COVID, Giorgio supported, served, and loved those in his community and diarised his efforts. Giorgio raised $100 alone and received a principal’s award from Mrs Robson! Go Giorgio, Go!!

Michaela Munden
Year 5 Teacher


Bebras Computational Thinking


Bebras Computational Thinking Challenge results

In Term 3 selected students from Years 2-4 participated in the Bebras Computational Thinking Challenge. Computational thinking is the process of formulating and solving problems by breaking them down into simple steps. It requires an interrelated set of skills including logical reasoning, algorithms, decomposition, abstraction and patterns.

Congratulations to the following students who achieved outstanding results:

  • Honour Roll was awarded to Sam McConnell and James Yeoh for full marks in the competition.
  • High Distinction was awarded to Tristan Lau.
  • Distinction was awarded to Bill Pan, Florence Eager, Leon Kenny, Benjamin McDonald, Jamie Tan, Genevieve Williams, Oscar Xu and Vanessa Yang.

These certificates will be awarded in a rooftop assembly. Participation, Merit and Credit certificates will be handed out in class.

Below are some reflections from two Year 4 students Sam McConnell and James Yeoh about the competition.


What did you enjoy about the competition?

James: I enjoyed the first set of questions because they were challenging but also interesting. For example, with picture sequencing there was an example of what the object looked like, then you had to see how it would change. It was hard because you had to check every single detail. There were also answers that looked very similar, but you had to notice the difference. There was a fun question where you had to move a frog along lily pads. There were a bunch of possibilities, but only one correct answer. It’s like a problem you can solve in real life. You have to try to find the correct path.

Sam: The competition made me think in different ways. Some questions were patterns and sequences. I liked these questions because you were shown the pattern and you were given different answers to complete it. This was interesting to solve. I loved that the competition challenged my brain.

What did you find challenging?

James: The last set of questions were most challenging. In the patterning questions you had to change a minor detail like the lines or colours. You had to really look at the detail because it might skip one element or a few.

Sam: There was a lot of detail in the questions that you had to read. For example, one of the last questions was about volcanic eruption paths. The dinosaur wanted to go back home, but the volcanoes were erupting. The question asked which pathway the dinosaur would take. When the volcano exploded it blocked all surrounding paths. To begin with I thought it only blocked one path which would have made it impossible to solve. But it was important to look at the details in the question and know that the surrounding paths were also blocked by the volcano.

Mrs Emma Clemens
Gifted and Talented Coordinator JS&G


University of Wollongong Learning Labs


Learning Labs is an academic and creative arts enrichment programme for Year 1 to Year 10 students, dedicated to providing fun and challenging workshops to motivated young people. Workshops are run face to face in the school holidays. They are presented by teachers with specialist training or specific interest in gifted education. Creative Kids vouchers are eligible for certain workshops.

Wollongong Campus Dates: 11 – 13 January 2023          

Venue: University of Wollongong
Applications Close: Wednesday 9 November 2022
Further Information:


Mrs Emma Clemens
Gifted and Talented Coordinator JS&G


What's on: upcoming events and activities


Tomorrow night!

Please join our P&F Presents: Co-curricular this Tuesday at 6pm in The Community Hub, St Andrew’s House, or online. This is a wonderful opportunity to hear from our panellists and have all your questions answered.

The expert panel is comprised of: 

  • Mr Richard Butler, Athletics Coach
  • Mr Dan Murray, Head of Co-curricular K-7
  • Ms Amanda Hogan, Deputy Head of Technological & Applied Studies

The panellists will give a short presentation which will be followed by a Q&A session. 

On the evening, sign in at reception and come directly to the Community Hub.

Refreshments will be served.

You can also join online via the link.

For enquiries, please contact the St Andrew's Community Engagement team: | 02 9286 9661

Tuesday 1 November, 6pm
The Community Hub, St Andrew’s House


Come and see the creative talent of our Year 7 Drama club students

The Year 7 Drama Club will be proudly presenting their Masterclass in the Black Box Theatre on Thursday 10 November. Under the expert tutelage of Mrs Skipsey, students have devised five original works that reflect the trials and tribulations of life in Year 7 at St Andrew's. From the start of the day on the light rail, through their adventures in various classes, to the locker rooms at the end of the day, the students will bring you their slice of life as Year 7 students at our School. We hope you will enjoy the show!

Thursday 10 November, 4pm
Black Box Theatre, BBC
Admission free


Reserve your free seat!


Coffee in Chapter House – Year 6 Parents

Parents and carers of Year 6 students are warmly invited to Coffee in the Chapter House for a farewell event. Come along and share a coffee with staff and other Year 6 parents celebrating and reflecting on your Junior School years and looking forward to the next adventure!

Monday 14 November, 8am-9am
Chapter House

Please RSVP by Wednesday 9 November for catering purposes.  


RSVP here


Ho ho ho… mark your calendars!

It’s on again! After a two year hiatus, the popular St Andrew's Cathedral School Rooftop Christmas Markets event is back – and with your help, we would like to make it bigger and better than ever! It will be held on Saturday 19 November from 5pm to 9pm on the SAH Rooftop.

The Rooftop Christmas Markets is a fundraising initiative organised by the school’s Association of Parents & Friends (P&F). This adult-only ticketed event is a wonderful opportunity for our community to come together once more to support local businesses, pick up wonderful treats for Christmas and enjoy some Christmas cheer. All profits from this year’s markets will go towards a sensory garden as part of the rooftop playground renovation.

This year’s Christmas Rooftop Markets will include:

  • Over 20 speciality Christmas gift stalls
  • Live music and performances
  • Food stalls, pre-order picnic packs and a bar
  • Silent auctions, lucky door prizes and much more

Saturday 19 November
The Rooftop, St Andrew’s House

Tickets go on sale Monday 7 November


There are many ways that you can be involved.

  • Buy tickets for you and your friends
    Tickets will be available to purchase from Monday 7 November. $10 per person includes a welcome drink and entry into the lucky door prize. Family and friends are welcome, but please note that this is an adult-only event.
  • Be a stallholder
    If you have a product or skill to sell, we want to know. Stalls are available from $80. If you would like to apply, further details can be found here.
  • Donate a prize
    Do you (or someone you know) own a restaurant? A salon? A holiday home? Or are you a regular at a city cafe? Bistro? We would love you to get in touch if you think you are able to offer us a voucher for our silent auction. All donors have the opportunity to have a weblink and share a Christmas promotion to the school community so it’s perfect for CBD businesses to get in front and centre of our school families and friends. Please contact eventsp&
  • Enter our Christmas Cake Off competition
    Show off your baking prowess and enter our first ever Christmas Cake Off Competition. More details to come.
  • Partner with us as a Sponsor
    Become one of our major sponsors for the evening and enter into a mutually beneficial partnership. You will also receive many exclusive perks that will have you VIPing at many of the school community events. For more details on sponsorship, email eventsp&
  • Be part of the Volunteer Team
    As with any community event, we need volunteers. If you are available to volunteer your time for an hour or two on Friday 18 November or Saturday 19 November, the volunteer sign-up will be available on 6 November. There’s nothing more satisfying than working as part of a volunteer team. It’s a great way to support the community, demonstrate service to your children, meet new people and have lots of fun.

If you have any questions regarding the P&F Christmas Rooftop Markets, please feel free to contact the committee at eventsp&

We look forward to seeing you there!

Rooftop Christmas Markets Organising Committee
Parents & Friends Association


Scrooge's Christmas is coming – Save the date!

The 2022 Middle School Drama Ensemble present Scrooge’s Christmas by Ken Jones – an adaptation of the Dickensian, A Christmas Carol.

On a frigid Christmas Eve after returning to his dark, cold apartment, a mean-spirited, greedy old man named Ebenezer Scrooge receives a chilling visitation from the ghost of his dead partner, Jacob Marley. Marley relates his unfortunate story: as punishment for his greedy and self-serving life his spirit has been condemned to wander the Earth weighted down with heavy chains. Marley hopes to save Scrooge from sharing the same penance. Marley informs Scrooge that three spirits will visit him during each of the next three nights.

Will Scrooge be transformed by what he sees, or will he be doomed to share Marley's fate?

Come and enjoy our Middle School Drama Ensemble performance!

24-26 November
Chapter House

Tickets go on sale Wednesday 2 November, 9am


Gift a Christmas – Anglicare Christmas Hampers


Support Year 10 to prepare Anglicare Christmas Hampers

Donate for Anglicare and help Year 10 students get to $10,000. We aim to create hundreds of meals for families in need this Christmas but this can only be achieved with your generous donations.

Help us give them the gift they won't forget!


Donate here!


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