Maker Spaces in our own Backyard!

cubby 2

Primary school children have been busy making all manner of huts and cubbies with natural materials found around our beautiful school grounds. Students have shown spontaneity,  high skill levels and creativity to create wonderful structures that can be ‘lived’ in. Take a look at some of the images below to see this great play time activity.

one cubby

Celebration Day for the Year 12 Group of 2012

Some year 12 girls

Some year 12 girls

After 13 years of school, year 12 VCE students enjoyed a celebration day of their time at Hawkesdale P12 College on Wednesday October, 24th. This was their last official day of school, before taking time for study leave, exam preparation and then sitting their final exams. Students were dressed in fancy dress, many in fairy tale characters (much to the delight of the younger students).

Students attended formal classes in the morning and were given a final assembly with the whole school in attendance, during period 6. A barbecue lunch was enjoyed by the year 12 students and staff. Final day for VCAL students will be Wednesday October 31st. We wish these students all the best for their exams and ‘dare them to achieve’.

Junior CFA

This week, year 9/10 CFA students learnt how to draw water out of a dam using a fire pump  to fill a tanker. This is a necessary skill in fighting fires in country areas. The students were undertaking this exercise at a fire dam at the back of Hawkesdale. They were placed in groups of four.

Local CFA members were in attendance to help teach these skilsl with two trucks in attendance. The pictures tell the story!


Student Investiture and Beacon Charter Speech

Following is the motivating speech given by Sonia van Kempen, of the Beacon Foundation,  at the recent student investiture and Beacon Charter ceremony.



16TH MARCH 2012

It’s my honour to be here at Hawkesdale P-12 College and to participate in this very special day.  It’s great to see so many leaders in the school community formally recognised today and I’m sure they will do an outstanding job fulfilling their roles this year.

So what makes these students different to any of you who aren’t undertaking leadership roles this year?  What makes them leadership material?   If you think about this you will probably come up with answers such as “they are good communicators,”  “they are team players,”  “they are hard working,”  “they are confident,” and so on.  You are right; there are many qualities and skills that good leaders have but you also have these qualities inside you, they may need to be developed and improved but you have them.  Do you know what I think the big difference is?  It’s very simple. I think it’s the fact that they’ve decided to stand up and say “YES, I can do it!”  “I can set a good example to others and be a leader in my school and my community.”

We can all be leaders in our own lives.  The Beacon program is all about getting you to recognise what you are good at and using this information to be successful.  Great leaders do this.  The find out what they good at and then they become exceptional at it!

Every one of you in this room has the ability to be a leader everyday of your life if you CHOOSE to – and it is a choice, you have to want to do it.  Being a leader isn’t about being the boss or being in control – this is what we usually think but it’s wrong.  Being a leader is all about setting a good example, using your words, your actions and most importantly your influence to have a positive impact on yourself and those around you.  Being a leader is about making good decisions and having the right attitude.

There’s an old saying relating to this that I think is very true – “ATTITUDE DETERMINES ALTITUDE!”  Put quite simply this means the way you look at things or think about things influences your chances of reaching your potential and being successful.  The more positive and encouraging you can be in your life, the greater impact and influence you will have on your peers and the more willing people will be to help you achieve your goals.

It doesn’t matter who you are or what you’re doing opportunities to be a leader exist everywhere.  It’s what you do with these opportunities that will determine what sort of person you are and how successful you can be.

My advice for you today and everyday is to take these opportunities to lead, no matter how small or insignificant they seem.  It may be something as simple as taking the initiative to clean your room without being asked to, helping someone with a problem at school or work, or accepting an umpire’s decision at football or netball without argument

The more you practice and develop your leadership skills and potential, the more they will grow and eventually you may find yourself up here on a day like today being recognised as a student leader in your school.  It all starts with a belief in yourself. Remember what I said earlier, good leaders work hard to make good decisions and good choices.  In dong this they lead by their example and inspire others around them to do the same.

In conclusion I’d just like to revisit the point I made at the beginning of my talk.  There is a leader inside each one of you.   Don’t keep your leader hidden, put it on display everyday for the world to see.  Embrace your inner leader, show him or her off to the world and enjoy the sense of self worth, achievement and success that comes with being a leader.

Thank you for listening to me today, I wish each and every one of you all the best for your school year in 2012 and your future beyond.  I hope to see many of you up here next year setting a great example for others to follow.

   SONIA VAN KEMPEN     16/03/2012



Students Leaders for the Ultranet

On Tuesday, April 17th, a group of 17 students were trained as leaders in the use of the Ultranet. These students came from year five through to year 9. Nigel Holloway, our Barwon South West ultranet coach, capably led them through the following:-

  1. explore what it means to be a leader
  2. learn about Ultranet functionality
  3. learn where to go to find Ultranet support materials
  4. engage in action planning for how they will effectively use the Ultranet in their schools.

Students spent their time productively during this full day workshop. On Wednesday, they were able to help their fellow class members with their ultranet space. These students were part of the leadership training:-

  • Year 5: Chelsea A, Caitlin M
  • Year 6: Hailey K, Kailyn, Jess S
  • Year 7: Tate G, Alannah G, Kirsty H, Matt R
  • Year 8: Jade M, Kaylee, Jobe H, Ruby F
  • Year 9: Emma H, Leah D
Thank you to these students for taking up this challenge!

Moyne Australia Day Shire Awards

Congratulations to Emily Huglin, our senior school vice captain of 2011, who was named “Young Citizen of the Year” for the Moyne Shire,  in today’s Australia Day Ceremony at Yambuk. It was a proud moment for Emily and reflects the wide and active involvement in our local community and beyond into the global community. Following is the impressive speech that Emily made to the large assemby gathered in the hall for the Moyne Shire Council’s Australia Day Celebrations.

Everything I have done; everything I have achieved; it has all come down to the desire to make a difference to the world.

I have recently been on a leadership camp at Cave Hill Creek for the Helen Macpherson Smith Trust Leadership program, this past week and one thing that stood out for me is that ‘we must be the change we wish to see in the world.’ I think this sums up myself entirely. For there to be change we ourselves must lead by example. To succeed we must turn out problems into challenges and face them with an eagerness rather than run away.

I have this desire to help other people, especially those less fortunate than myself. It is with this desire, this vision and intent that I have found a passionate drive to make a change in the world – no matter  how young or old you are that you too can make a difference. You don’t have to be a Prime Minister  or be the one that finds the cure to a disease but you can be the one that simply listens to a friend for you ARE making a difference. It is this awareness and recognition of small things having the ability to lead to bigger things that will bring about change.

Travelling overseas has allowed me to gain an understanding of other people in the world – no matter their culture or race. These experiences have opened my eyes and shown me how lucky I am to have the life I lead. I have taken it with both hands  and tried not to take everything I have for granted and tried my hardest at every opportunity I am given.

Many of my achievements are about how I can help my community as they have helped me throughout my childhood, it has been a chance to give back. I am lucky to have such great support and a loving family which has allowed me to try and experience everything I have so far n life. They have shown me a great deal of love and support and I want to return the favour and help my community and I want to return the favour and help my community – both local in Australia and around the world.

Thank you to the Moyne Shire and the Yambuk community for hosting another great Australia Day breakfast and celebration and good luck to everyone for the rest of 2012.

Congratulations are also in order to HADDAC – the Hawkesdale Action Development Group who also won an award for the Moyne Shire Community Event of the Year. This was awarded for the Hawkesdale 150th Celebration.

Digital Footprint Competition

digital footprint winners

Congratulations to all students from Grade 5 to 8 who participated in the “What Does My Digital Footprint Say About Me?” competition. We recieved some excellent posters, pieces of writing, music and multimedia projects demonstrating a very good understanding of appropriate online behaviour. The winners are shown above, with great prizes donated by Target, Dick Smith and IT Made Simple. Thanks also to Mrs Davey, who did a great job assisting students with their entries and co-ordinating the entry process. The winners are:
Nicky Oosthuizen – Year 5/6 Writing (Target Voucher)
Billy-Jo Parsons-Muskee – Year 7/8 Writing (Dick Smith MP3 player)
Thalia Watson – Year 7/8 Poster ($20 iTunes voucher)
Ben Casey and Luke Gow – Year 7/8 Music (Rap) ($20 iTunes voucher)
Sophie Hines – Year 5/6 Multimedia (Digital video camera donated by IT Made Simple)
Sarah Herring – Year 7/8 Multimedia (Digital video camera donated by IT Made Simple).

Congratulations to a number of students!

Congratulations are in order for a number of students over the last few weeks. Here are just some:-

  1. The  students – Levi, Nathan, Tom and Shannon who played for the Kakoda Football Team in the u/16s Grand Final on the weekend. They won!
  2. Henry, Lachlan and Richard who competed and proudly represented the school in the inaugural Sheepvention Schools Fencing Competition in Hamilton on Monday 1st August. Their team was placed second and consequently won themselves Waratah fencing products to the value of $300. These students are studying either certificate 2 or 3 in Agricultural Studies through RIST in Hamilton, in addition to their school based studies. Well done!