Year 6 Cooloongup Camp

Not even a public holiday could throw off the Year 6s heading down to Camp Cooloongup. Despite the minor changes to the camp itinerary, students came to school on Monday morning, raring to go! 

We packed the bus, and off we went to Rockingham Foreshore for morning tea. Children are children after all, and loved having the playground to themselves! From here, we went to the campsite and set up our dorms. In the afternoon, we travelled into the city where we visited the WA Museum. Our night was capped off with a delicious butter chicken dinner and apple crumble and custard dessert.  

Day 2 was spent at the campgrounds where we participated in team building games, the flying fox and archery. We also enjoyed our free time on the bouncy pillow, picking and making daisy chains and playing mini golf. The highlight of the day for most was being introduced to a Tim Tam Slam, in which there was much discussion between whether Ms Vallance’s or Mrs Loader’s technique was correct; bite the corners or bite the top and bottom. 

Our third and final day was spent in Fremantle. We visited the Maritime and Shipwreck Museums, the Roundhouse and played at the Esplanade playground. In the evening, we were joined by Mr Vallance and Mr Beacham for dinner at Cicerellos, followed by a wonderful night tour at the prison. Certain children were scared by not only the tour guides, but members of staff also! 

We had a wonderful camp, and students begged for another day, but staff were well and truly ready for that public holiday! 

Year 9 Rite Journey Camp – Tambellup

Each year, at the start of November, the sheep-to-human ratio of Tambellup is altered dramatically as our Year 9 cohort descend on this tiny Great Southern town. At the outset, the students are given strict instructions to be on their absolute best behaviour because, as is the case in all regional towns, “Everyone knows who you are!” And as always, our students didn’t let us down, but represented our College with the maturity we aim to develop through the Rite Journey program.  

We threw a wide range of challenges at them, starting with their basic living conditions: no cute bunk beds or spacious ablution facilities for our students; but rather a bare shearing shed floor for sleeping and dining quarters, and the allocation of just one shower for the week at the town’s recreation centre. For many of our city-slickers, this alone was an enormous challenge!  

We then put them through their paces with a series of physical challenges including yabbying at the dam; climbing Bluff Knoll on a cold and rainy day; shearing, drenching and sorting sheep under the guidance of Mr Craig Beacham and his team; and completing the ‘solo’ in a paddock, during which the students spent an afternoon and night on their own in a tent. During the solo, the students wrote a letter to their Year 12 selves, which will be safely stored at the College and given back to them on their graduation night. The letter details their future hopes, dreams and goals and is intended to help the students live intentionally, rather than simply allowing life to happen to them.  

The final big test for the week was a service challenge at Tambellup Primary School. This year, Mr Pleysier ran a woodwork activity in which our students paired up with younger students to make a toy car together. We also did rock painting with the younger children, and helped with classroom activities such as reading, making posters about the seasons, and sport. Some of our students assisted with various chores around the school campus, like cleaning up the shed, covering library books and pumping up inflatable cushions. Being a small country school, the staff often do not have much DOTT (duties other than teaching) time to do such tasks, so it was wonderful to be able to help them in these ways and hopefully ease a bit of pressure off them. On the final morning of camp, we returned to Tambellup Primary to cook breakfast for the school community before our return trip to Perth.  

Now, if you’re having any concerns about how hard the students had to work on this camp, please be assured that there was plenty of fun to be had throughout the week! Special mention must be made of our inaugural Bush Dance held on the first night in the shearing shed. There is unfortunately very little photo evidence of the evening because Mr Vallance, our Caller for the event, refused to speak in his hilarious American accent unless EVERYONE participated, leaving no room for anyone use the ‘photography’ excuse. Given the overwhelmingly positive feedback afterwards, the Bush Dance looks set to become a new tradition on this camp. Another highlight was the stop-over at the Katanning All-Ages Playground. If you’re ever passing through Katanning, be sure to visit this legendary playground. It is always a hit, no matter your age! 

Year 9 class of 2022 – WELL DONE on embracing everything we threw at you on this epic adventure. You have demonstrated and hopefully proved to yourselves that you can do hard things, and this is invaluable as your draw ever closer to adulthood.  

Finally, a huge ‘thank you’ to the staff who spent the week away from their own families and worked tirelessly to make the camp the success that it was: Mr Pleysier, Mrs Hasluck, Mrs Loader, Mr Vallance and Mrs Groom.

Remembrance Day

On Friday 11 November, our College held a Remembrance Day service, in honour and remembrance of those who made a sacrifice for the freedoms we now enjoy.

The service opened with an introduction by Year 5 Teacher, Ms Vallance, recounting the events which took place on the eleventh hour on the eleventh day of November 1918.

Jackson (Y9) presented us with an Acknowledgement of Country, which was followed by prayer for the service from our College Chaplian, Mrs Hasluck.

James (Y5) shared the following Bible reading:

“If you keep my commands, you will remain in my love, just as I have kept my Father’s commands and remain in his love. I have told you this so that my joy may be in you and that your joy may be complete.  My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you. Greater love has no one than this: to lay down one’s life for one’s friends.” John 15:10-13

Our Year 11 Student Leader, Zachary read ‘The Ode’, as follows:

“They shall grow not old, as we that are left grow old;
Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn.
At the going down of the sun and in the morning
We will remember them.”

Ky (Y10) played The Last Post on trumpet, followed by one minute of silence, which was completed with his playing of ‘The Rouse’.

The service was concluded with the National Anthem, and the laying of wreaths at our flag poles by Mr Beacham.

Lest We Forget.

Y7 Father & Son and Mother & Daughter Camps

For the past ten years, Southern Hills Christian College has run a Father & Son Overnight Camp and a Mother & Daughter Overnight Camp, as part of our Year 7 Outdoor Education Program with great success. This year the Father and Son camp was held at the end of Term 3, and the Mother & Daughter Camp was held at the start of Term 4. 

On two different Tuesday afternoons, parents joined their children in setting up their tents or swags together, and cooking dinner on Trangia camp stoves. This was an interesting shared culinary experience. Students were able to teach their parents how to set up and prepare a camp meal on a lightweight portable stove. 

After dinner David Walker, from the Fathering Project came and talked to the fathers and sons about the value of parenting and spending quality time with their children. The mothers and daughters heard from Bonnie Walker also about the value of parenting and spending quality time with their children. Their messages were well received, and the feedback has been incredibly positive. 

After the talks, we headed over to the firepit and cooked S’mores over the campfire and enjoyed some hot Milo. Mr Chapman finished off both nights with a game of spotlight. 

The following morning, we woke up early packed up the camping gear and headed over to the firepit to cook toasties using the jaffle irons on the hot coals. After breakfast, most of the parents headed off to work. The students then prepared their lunch and packed their hiking backpacks with all their provisions for the day hike. 

Some brave parents joined us for the hike through Bungendore Park and Wungong Gorge. The students did an excellent job of navigating the group and not getting lost. They completed the nine-kilometre hike down to South West Highway in about 4 hours. 

Thanks to our staff, Mrs Rachael Hasluck, Mr Chapman, and Mr Vallance for helping on these fantastic camps. Thanks also to the Year 7 parents who came along and supported their children in this important activity.