Hunter Sports High News Term 3 - Week 10 - 2021

principal's message

Dear Parents and Carers,

We've made it to the end of Term 3! It has certainly been a challenge for our students, families and staff but I am incredibly proud that everyone has worked together to support the learning and wellbeing of our students since the lockdown came into effect in early August (Week 4). Thank you again to families for supporting your children with online learning and flexibly accessing work through the school's online learning platforms. It is wonderful to be a part of such a caring, supportive and collaborative community. I also want to acknowledge the incredible work of our Hunter Sports High staff throughout this term to keep learning happening online and for supporting our students, and each other, while juggling their own families and home-schooling too. Thank you!

As announced last week by the Premier, remote learning will continue into the start of Term 4 with a plan set for the gradual return of students to face to face learning. Please understand that this is a guide and subject to change at any time depending on the health status of the State and our Local Government Area. Term 4 begins on Tuesday 5th October with remote learning. Looking ahead there are two possibilities:

  1. Our school LGA comes out of lockdown and all students return to school under Level 3 restrictions.
  2. Our school LGA remains in lockdown and the school follows the return to school plan with Year 12 returning from Week 4 (October 25th), Year 11 from the beginning of Week 5 (November 1st) and Years 7-10 at the start of Week 6 (November 8th).

Year 12 students will begin their HSC examinations on site from Tuesday November 9th-Friday December 3rd. The updated HSC timetable and relevant information can be accessed here: https://educationstandards.nsw.edu.au/wps/portal/nesa/11-12/hsc/key-dates-exam-timetables/hsc-written-exam-timetable. We checked in with our Year 12 students in a year meeting this morning and were very happy to be able to advise them that we can move ahead with plans for our Year 12 Graduation and formal events. With the HSC moved to November, we look forward to celebrating with our resilient Year 12 students at the completion of the exams in December.

We also held our 2022 Leadership elections this week. Students watched some very impressive video presentations from our nominees in roll call classes and voted online to elect our school leaders for 2022. All nominees had been through a nomination process and proven themselves to be suitable candidates for a leadership role at Hunter Sports High. Congratulations and best wishes to all nominees, all of whom would be very deserving to be elected as a School Captain and leader of our school, to represent and be the voice for all students at Hunter Sports High. Our 2022 leaders will be announced on Friday 8th October in our online Consistent Effort assemblies where we will also recognise the effort of our students throughout Term 3. More information about the assemblies will be provided in an email early next term.

We received some terrific news this week with the release of 2021 NAPLAN results and are pleased to advise that the results are the best we have ever had across all domains. Our Year 9 Reading and Writing scores are above state average and we achieved our school targets for the Premier's Priorities, set by the Department of Education, for the number of students in the top two bands in Reading and Numeracy. These results are a credit to the commitment of our students and the hard work of all our staff to improve literacy and numeracy standards at Hunter Sports High. We are yet to receive the students' individual reports but these will be posted home to families next term.

I'd like to wish all our students and families the very best for a relaxing and well-deserved break at the end of another challenging school term. I look forward to having the students transition back to face-to-face learning in Term 4 when local circumstances and conditions allow. Thanks again for your continued support. If you have any questions or concerns please contact the school on 4943 5755. Take care and stay safe.

Ms Rachel Byrne - Principal

getting physical with PDHPE

The PDHPE faculty would like to acknowledge the challenges faced this term and to every student and family we hope you are safe and well. Your health and wellbeing is the most important thing during times like these. Students, we look forward to getting back into the classroom with you very soon but we hope you take the upcoming break to disconnect from technology, relax, recharge and enjoy outdoor spaces. Whether it be walking your dog, riding a bike, kicking a footy at the local field, heading to the beach as the weather warms up or dancing around in your room, make sure you find enjoyable ways to get your heart rate up a little. Physical activity improves your blood flow, releases endorphins which are hormones responsible for your mood (in essence it can make you happy) and can also reduce stress so go have an active and happy holiday.

We know it has been difficult for some students to get online however we would like to recognise those students who have been actively engaging in learning activities by zooming in and contributing to discussions and completing work. It has been great to see Year 8 and 10 students sending in videos of themselves dancing, students timing themselves completing workouts and sharing, PASS students completing TeamBuildr workouts and performance analysis diagrams and Year 7 students working on their portfolio samples just to name a few.

To Year 12 students in PDHPE, CAFS & SLR we just wanted to shout out to you in what will be one of your final newsletters. Your time as a senior PDHPE faculty student has definitely been unique and the road to this point paved with many challenges and curve balls. You have shown great resilience and growth over the last two years and you are so close to the finish line. Take some time for yourself this holiday if the end of this term has you a little burnt out, especially those of you in CAFS and PDHPE who will be sitting your exams in November. Remember your HSC teachers Mrs Stone, Mrs Hoffman, Mr Strachan and Mr O'Neill are all here to support you. We will see you when you return next term to put in that last sprint to bring this marathon home. Just remember the steeper the mountain, the harder the climb, the better the view from the finish line. You got this!

If you're looking for some fitness fun and ideas, don't forget to check out the HSHS PE from Home 2.0 website created by our amazing PDHPE staff. You'll find it here: https://sites.google.com/education.nsw.gov.au/physical-education-home-2-0/home There's also some great information in the image below from the NSW Institute of Sport about maintaining your mental health and wellbeing during COVID times.

new elective creates link between sport, science, engineering and the real world

Staff across three faculties at Hunter Sports High School have been working together to create a cross-faculty elective for Stage 5 (Year 9 & 10) students. The new elective, Design and Engineering in Sport, brings together key elements from Technical and Applied Studies (TAS), Strength, Conditioning and Sport Science and Science, in a course designed to engage students who have an interest in combining sport, science, and technology.

Science teacher, Mr. Scott Westcott, says the elective “gives students access to the latest technology the school has on offer to solve real-world, sports-related problems. Each unit of work will be presented as a problem and the students will need to work together to solve the problem and present their solution to peers and teachers”.

Head Teacher TAS, Ms. Karen Hines is keen to see the design process applied across several different areas across the school. “The design process used in TAS lends itself perfectly to students finding creative, technical solutions to the problems we provide them with. In addition, the technology we have access to at school, such as laser cutting; 3D printing, heart rate monitors and Virtual Reality will provide our students with knowledge and skills they can apply when they enter the workforce".

The Head of Strength and Conditioning/Sports Science, Mr. Adam Trypas, says the beauty of the program is that it is flexible enough to allow students to pursue their specific area of sporting interest. For example, if a student has an interest in comparing different materials used in sporting equipment, or how to construct a highly efficient electric bike, or how to improve athletic performance using GPS tracking, the students have the flexibility to explore their interest with a singular focus.

The new course will start for Year 9 students in 2022.

Design & Engineering in Sport is a new elective subject for Year 9 students next year

creative arts at home


Congratulations to Taylah Lane (Year 10) and Tori Adamson (Year 8) whose artworks, pictured below, have been selected for the Nagoya Sister City Art Exchange 2021. Only 50 artworks were selected to be sent across for the exhibition in Nagoya, Japan. Artworks from the Japanese students will be sent to our school in exchange as a part of the Sister City exhibition.

Congratulations also go to our HSC Visual Arts students who submitted their Body of Works on Monday of Week 9. Their commitment to their artworks is a testament to them during these challenging times. We can’t wait to share them with you after the final marking has been completed.

Two student artworks have been selected for the Nagoya Art Exchange

Things have been busy in a different way this term. It has been amazing to see so many students online and engaged in the last few weeks. They are to be commended on the presentation of their work and creativity.

Year 8 students have been busy online in their Google Classroom finishing off our Australian music topic with comparisons of Contemporary Indigenous Music and Artists, and traditional Aboriginal Music characteristics and instrumentation. We have also had fun on Beepbox – a compositional interactive tool, as well as playing music on our virtual keyboards.

Year 9 & 10 students have been busy in their Google Classrooms too. Year 9 have been looking at the musical concepts of tone, colour, pitch and structure through listening activities and playing ‘On Top of the World’ and ‘All Summer Long’ on virtual keyboards or on their keyboards/guitars at home. Year 10 have been looking at a Music Choice board to choose their own path, completing listening activities and playing ‘I See Fire’ on virtual pianos.

Our Year 11's have been practicing some great performance material at home and working on performance techniques to get them ready for Year 12 work. They've also been targeting their listening skills and improving their knowledge of the Musical Concepts.

Our amazing Year 12 students have been practicing up a storm at home and at school preparing for the HSC Music performance exams held this week. All students were ready to demonstrate their technical skills, stylistic understanding, sense of personal expression and understanding of solo techniques in the four musical pieces to be performed. The lockdown has taken a considerable toll on all HSC students this year and so I am extremely proud of the efforts and commitment that our five talented Music students have shown in the last six weeks. Congratulations and best of luck to Alana Griffiths, Lashelle Holland, Riley Jones, Izaak Clifford and Tarni Evans.


Year 7 Japanese students have been creating Google Sites to showcase what they have been learning about Japanese Foods. Students have not only been learning about Japanese food and culture but also developing a range of new skills: creating surveys, results tables, infographics as well as design elements to create engaging presentations.

Year 7 students created Google sites to showcase their Japanese learning

BIG picture: seniors at the end!

Written by Sophia and Tash | Big Picture Media Team

Our graduating Big Picture students

Here we are, that time of the year. Our seniors are wrapping it up, packing it up and getting ready to set off for a new journey. Our Year 12 students have been working extremely hard on their Senior Thesis this term, making sure it is top shape and great quality, putting their all into their studies before they move on to explore the rest of the world. The students finishing Year 12 are Milan Hammond, Webster O’Meley, Tash Hanson and Elijah Clark and they have all marked their spot in the school along the way.

Milan’s journey so far in the Big Picture Academy at Hunter Sports High has been amazing, she is a true spirit and an amazing role model to the kids younger than her. Milan played for the Matilda’s at the start of the year. Her love for sport has brought her to many of her topics, showing interest in all areas of sport science, planning to go to University after school to study a degree in Sport Science. Milan has marked her spot and we are extremely proud of her and her achievements!

Elijah or EJ was the first Big Picture Academy student to become a School Captain in Newcastle. EJ, at the moment, is studying his Cert. lll at TAFE in Screen and Media. He has taken the love for film, tv, screen and media, and is using his prac experience to help teach people in all those areas, and it also really helps that he has a lot of experience in those areas. We are proud of EJ and wish him the best on his journey!

Webster has been an amazing student in the academy, his interest and passion in psychology shows in his motivation and effort in all areas of his work and research. “Big Picture has taught me to research independently and adapt to difficult situations.” Webster said. Webster has recently stepped out of his comfort topics that are usually based around psychology (emotions, disorders, etc.) and has taken interest in the NUPrep courses, preparing himself for University. We love Webster's attitude and consistent effort towards everything and wish him all the best on his path to University!

Natasha or Tash, has been in the academy since she was fourteen years old, “When I first joined Big Picture I kind of hopped from topic to topic until I found an interest in animal care, so I stuck with that for a few years until I started to lose interest in it and that is when I found my passion which is youth work and that is what I have been focusing on recently,” Tash explained. Her passion, interest and love for youth work has landed her an internship as well a job outside of school in youth work. After high school she plans to go to TAFE and complete her Diploma in Community Services. We have loved having Tash and her bright personality in the academy and are wishing her the best of luck in receiving her Diploma!

Our academy holds so many bright and self-driven students, the achievements that the students strive towards is outstanding, their pride in being a part of the academy is huge and every student that goes through to Year 12 in the academy has been an amazing role model to any student younger than them and their example and efforts during the Senior Thesis is amazing, and we wish them all the best during this lockdown and after!

Term 3 in tas

Stage 6 HSC Industrial Technology: Timber products & furniture technologies Major Project

Like many HSC courses, a major project makes up a large part of the course in Year 12 and culminates the end of twelve months of hard work. This year due to the COVID-19 pandemic, students work - both project and folio- will be marked internally by Mr. Winter and Mr. Davies. The students should be congratulated on the effort and skills applied during the production of their projects. Student works from left to right:

  1. Jakob Fitzclarence - Bedside table
  2. Jackson Buttsworth - Jack & Jill seat
  3. Kaitlin Gilchrist - Trestle table
  4. Kye Milton - Outdoor table
  5. Caleb Trowbridge -Outdoor table
Year 12 major projects
Stage 4 Technology (Mandatory)
Students have been creating some amazing work during learning from home, all the while our vegetable garden for Year 8 Food and Agriculture has been flourishing.
Stage 5 Subject Selections for 2022/23

There are six TAS subjects available for students in Year 8 to choose to study in 2022/23. To help them decide, have a look at Stage 5 courses in the Google site below, watch the mini-movies and read the information on each course. Any questions can be referred to your child’s Technology teacher or Mrs. Hines (TAS Head Teacher). https://sites.google.com/education.nsw.gov.au/hshstassubjectselections2021/home?authuser=0

a Recipe to try at home:
One of Mrs Hines' favourite recipes to try at home!


Academic Enrichment Coaches

Thank you to our Numeracy Tutors Callan Crapp, Scott McCarter and Kate Stansfield for their dedicated work assisting HSC students with their study this term. These tutors will continue to assist our students for the remainder of 2021 with a strong focus on our Year 8 students.

HSC Students

Our Year 12 students completed HSC Trials early this term and have continued to do their best throughout a challenging and constantly changing situation. Students are encouraged to seek assistance from teachers and Senior Study Advisor Tamara Outred during study periods for extra assistance with coursework, study tips and time management. Ensure to keep up to date with your coursework on Edrolo and attempt HSC questions via our Smartermaths portal.

Maths In Trades Pathway

Students in Stage 5 Maths in Trades Pathway (MITP) completed a White Card Course run at HSHS in conjunction with TAFE NSW. Congratulations to these students for the commitment and effort you demonstrated. Our Maths in Trades Pathway is a Stage 5 Mathematics course that replaces mainstream Mathematics. Students progress through a series of practical modules that focus on the maths needed for a variety of different trades. This includes exposure to Trade Readiness (TAFE NSW) Courses, White Card training and study of trade-specific modules. *Parents interested in MITP for Year 9/10 students in 2022 should contact HT Mathematics.

Maths in Trade course in action
Online Mathematics platforms at HSHS

Get to know our current online Mathematics platforms:

  • Education Perfect (www.educationperfect.com): Education Perfect (EP) is an online platform designed to make learning fun, engaging and effective. HSHS students in Years 7-10 each receive a personalised account and is this to complete Pre and Post testing, assessments and interactive revision lessons.
  • Edrolo (www.edrolo.com.au): Edrolo is an online resource designed to provide students with engaging, informative and comprehensive presentations to help them understand and learn all they need to know for their exams. HSHS students in Year 11 and Year 12 each receive a personalised account and must complete compulsory modules each topic.
  • Smartermaths (www.smartermaths.com.au): HSHS students in Year 11 and Year 12 have been given a login to Smartermaths and can use this to access past-HSC questions. These have been sorted into topics, difficulty level and contain full worked responses. This website is a must for all students completing a HSC examination.

creative minds in the gem academy

Students from the GEM Academy started this term off by learning to think more creatively through the completion of a series of building challenges. One such challenge was using marshmallows and spaghetti to build a tower. The students had to work in a team and problem solve along the way to try to build the highest tower. A lot of fun was had, and the students did get to eat the leftover marshmallows! Students have also been enjoying Technology rotations this term and are learning more about programming Ozobots and Video Production with Mr Tait. The photos below were taken by Angie Dwyer.

A big congratulations to Flynn Hellawell who was our Character Cup winner last term (Term 2). Jake Mulley and Jasmine Welsh received Highly Commended awards. These students were nominated by staff and peers for demonstrating skills of bravery, grit, honesty, leadership, gratitude, empathy, loyalty and zest.

Students also continue to produce work of an extremely high standard for their Personal Interest Projects. It is such a joy for our staff to see the students grow in confidence as they present their work to staff and peers.

the world of wellbeing

Student Support Officers (SSO)

The Wellbeing team has welcomed a new Student Support Officer recently. Sarah Berry has worked in the Youth Sector for many years, most recently as the Lake Macquarie Youth Development Officer. Sarah is passionate about supporting student wellbeing, advocacy, participation and the community. Sarah has lived in the local area her whole life.

Our Student Support Officers (formerly known as Youth Workers) aim to support the wellbeing of all students. They do this by implementing whole school initiatives and delivering small group programs on topics such as friendship, study skills and online safety. Students can also drop into the Youth Room for a chat at any time. Keira and Sarah can help connect students with the school counsellor or other community support services.

  • Sarah Berry: Monday-Wednesday sarah.berry17@det.nsw.edu.au
  • Keira Taggart: Wednesday-Friday keira.taggart@det.nsw.edu.au
Our new Student Support Officer Sarah Berry

Last Thursday for RUOK? Day students learned more about how to offer support to a friend or family member in need and how to feel more comfortable in knowing what to say and do. Students were provided with a range of useful information on how to have a conversation that may save a life and were encouraged to spend the day completing activities to boost their own mental health and wellbeing. Thank you to students who shared with us how they spent their day.

Students learnt how to support their friends and take some time out for their own wellbeing on RUOK? Day
HSHS staff also checked in with each other for RUOK? Day, sharing a cuppa, takeaway and Netflix recommendations, having a chat and wearing a touch of yellow for a full staff Teams meeting.
Looking after your mental health during coronavirus (COVID-19) restrictions


How we might be feeling and why?

On top of the concern we’re all feeling about the health impacts of a virus like this one, COVID-19 has turned our lives upside down. All of the things we’re used to doing each week - going to school and work, catching up with friends and family, going out for dinner, playing sport, going on holidays - have changed. Many people have lost their jobs and there is uncertainty about how COVID-19 will affect jobs and the economy into the future. And for people working in health care and essential services, work pressures have never been greater. Under these circumstances, it’s normal to feel anxious, overwhelmed, confused, sad or even bored. But these feelings can take their toll, and we all need to take the time to care for ourselves and to look out for our friends, family and colleagues.

What you can do? There are things you can do to take care of your mental health and wellbeing.

  • Look after your physical health: Exercising and eating well help us stay physically and mentally healthy. Read more about how you can stay physically active while following physical distancing rules, and find tips on eating well at home. Getting a good night’s sleep is a really important part of staying healthy too. If you’re finding it hard to get to sleep, these tips might help.
  • Stay connected: Maintaining social connections is important to feeling safe and well. You can still keep in touch with family and friends while you practise physical distancing through video chats, phone calls, online groups, chats with neighbours while keeping 1.5 metres apart
  • Develop new routines: We’re used to having routines to guide our days and give us a sense of achievement. When so much seems out of our control, establishing some structure in our days will help to provide stability and a ‘new normal’. This is particularly challenging for families adjusting to home learning. Try to create new routines as a family to help separate ‘work and school time’ and ‘family time’. Think about the parts of your usual routine you value the most and find ways to make these part of your day — such as having lunch with colleagues via video chat, or finding an online gym class.
  • Take breaks: Be kind to yourself and take time just for you, even if it is just a few minutes to take some deep breaths and step outside into the fresh air. Plan your breaks and use them to do something that makes you feel calm and happy.
  • Reach out to others: Some people are particularly vulnerable for different reasons. They may be older, live on their own, have a chronic medical condition, or live in a challenging home situation. Reaching out to give people support, if you are able, can help your mental wellbeing and make a big difference to someone else’s life.
  • Seek support: It’s normal to have ups and downs, and it is important to talk about how you’re feeling with family and friends. In times like these, they are likely experiencing similar feelings. If you want to talk to someone else, but aren’t sure where to start, there are lots of great online and phone chat support services available. Head to Health is a good place to begin, and Beyond Blue has launched a dedicated coronavirus online and phone support service. But if you are feeling anxious or depressed for an extended period, see a health professional. Doctors and other health care providers such as psychologists are consulting via video or phone. Find out more about telehealth options.
Seasons for Growth Program- Term 4

Seasons for Growth aims to strengthen the social and emotional wellbeing of young people who are dealing with significant life changes. This small group program is for any young person who is living with the effects of change and loss. Many factors can cause change such as:

  • Friends can come and go
  • Loss of someone or something you love
  • Parents and families separate
  • Moving to a new place
  • Impact of illness
  • Family work-life changes

Change affects everyone differently, as does grief. Seasons for Growth focuses on the impact of the change, not the event itself. The program does not provide counselling or therapy. It is suggested that anyone affected by bereavement wait 6-12 months before participating in a Seasons for Growth program.

If you feel your student could benefit from being involved in this program, please contact Mrs Knight (Natasha.reynolds1@det.nsw.edu.au)

community notices