By Rebecca Falvey 6Navy

Last Thursday, forty-three, bleary-eyed girls met at Tangara at 6:45 am to begin our long-awaited journey to Canberra. We were all so excited to learn about Parliament and, of course, to go to Questacon!

After a long, three-hour trip, we arrived at Parliament House to have lunch, celebrate Veronica Sarkis’ 12th birthday and to learn about how Australian laws are made. There, we were also taken on a tour of the Senate and the House of Representatives. We learned how laws are passed; where in the chambers certain people sit and that the Parliament House has 4,500 rooms and 2,700 clocks.

After, we went to the Australian War Memorial, which has an amazing view of the Parliament House. We went on a tour of the War Memorial and saw many names on the Roll of Honour. We were delighted to be asked to take part in the Last Post Ceremony, at 5:00, where Breanna Rochester and Jasmine Khoury laid a wreath in front of the Pool of Reflection. The service was broadcast nationwide.

At the conclusion of the ceremony, we went to the Canberra Carotel Motel to get changed and have dinner. It was a noisy meal. Then we went to the Australian Institute of Sports and saw where the Olympians train, although we didn’t see any. Following the tour, we went to the games room which featured skiing, basketball, soccer, cricket, sprinting, high jump, rowing, cycling and snowboarding all of which you can try using a simulator.

Exhausted, we went back to our accommodation where we fell into bed and, by 10:30, were in a deep and peaceful slumber……….. Well, that didn’t happen.

The next day we went to the Australian Electoral Centre where we learnt about voting, how to vote and how the electoral system works. We did several activities including having our own vote. The humble ‘Peach’ was voted our favourite.

Next we visited the National Museum of Australia. There we watched a video about Australia through time. We walked around at our own pace looking at the amazing displays. At the end we went to K-space which is a centre in the museum where you can create your own robot and go on adventures with it.

Last but DEFINITELY NOT LEAST we went to Questacon where the teachers had a hard time trying to keep us calm. We saw a show called ‘Bright Sparks’ where we learnt about electricity. Grace Shamieh and Veronica Sarkis were both volunteers for this show. We visited many of the levels, experimenting with the displays, demonstrating scientific phenomenon and trying to wait patiently until it was time to go on the free-fall slide. However, in the end, it wasn’t everyone’s ‘Cup of Tea’.

On the way back to Tangara we all raved about how much fun the excursion had been but it wasn’t complete until we stopped at Maccas to fill our very hungry bellies.

The Year Fives have so much to look forward to for next year.

Year 6 School Excursion to our National Capital – October 2016
The Year 6 classes from Tangara School for Girls have recently undertaken an educational tour of the national capital. The girls were given the opportunity to participate in a variety of educational programs which focus on Australia’s history, culture, heritage and democracy.
The Australian Government recognises the importance of all young Australians being able to visit the national capital as part of their Civics and Citizen Education. To assist families in meeting the cost of the excursion, the Australian Government is contributing funding under the Parliament and Civics Education Rebate Program towards these costs. The rebate will be paid directly to the school upon the completion of the excursion.

Congratulations to all Tangara students who took part in The Festival of Speech on Friday, 21 October and Saturday, 22 October at Abbotsleigh!

The Festival of Speech is hosted annually by one of the Australian Heads of Independent Girl Schools (AHIGS) member schools. Twenty seven schools currently participate in the Festival and students have the opportunity to perform in the areas of drama, debating, poetry, prose readings, current affairs and religious and ethical questions. The Festival is open to girls from Year 7 to Year 11 and offers an important focal point for skill development, personal expression, teamwork and friendship.
All participants from Tangara performed superbly in what was a very competitive weekend. A special congratulations goes to Jasmine Aitken (Year 8) who placed an excellent fourth place in the Poetry reading section.
Mrs Dana Waalkans, History and Geography Teacher and Tangara’s Secondary Debating Coordinator, said she is very proud of each student for their effort.
“I am very proud of the fact that although Tangara is such a small school, particularly in relation to some other AHIGS schools, we are able to produce so many public speakers of such high quality. Congratulations to all the girls!”
The full list of Tangara’s participants in the 2016 Festival of Speech include:
Jasmine Aitken (Poetry), Elizabeth Gooley (Public Speaking), Madeline Gooley (Readings), Lucy Chee, Jayda Watson and Rebecca Lennon (Religious and Ethical Questions), Elizabeth Fernandez, Hanna Pillai, Simoni Shirwadkar and Naomi Rodrigues (Junoir Debating), Anna Engesser, Faith Limantono and Isobel Patmore (Senoir Debating).


Earlier this year in May, six out of our class total of nine girls - now ladies, came together to celebrate our 20 Year Reunion. Yes, you read correctly, there were nine (9) in our class!

Back in our final years after having 'private tuition' classes with our teachers we'd come together on the balcony or the Year 12 Room, and share our lunches. Toasted ham and cheese sandwiches, delicious leftover dinners, freshly made carbonara, the most amazing Croatian pita, dark cooking chocolate, homemade pastry... oh those were the days, basking in the midday sun talking about all the important things... it's hard to believe it was 20+ years ago.
With that in mind it made sense for us to reconnect around a table, sharing our lunch again in another beautiful space. Maia Schulze, now back in Sydney after a number of years living in Shanghai, generously opened her new home to host the auspicious reunion. A relaxing and enjoyable time was had by all.
On behalf of the finishing Class of '95 - Thank You TOGS for the opportunity for our class to come together and Thank You to Maia for hosting.
by Theresa Kwok
PS Since May, I am pleased to update, we've had the birth of a baby girl and recently an engagement!!! New beginnings at different stages for both of these lovely girls.

During this week’s High School Assembly, representatives from the Rotary Club of Beecroft presented Sophie Landers (Year 11) with a very generous donation in order to fund her trip to the Philippines for Tangara’s annual Service Project.

Sophie was presented with a large check in front of the entire High School, and was applauded by the Rotary Club for her decision to spend her summer holidays serving those less fortunate.

The Rotary Club also welcomed Sophie to a formal dinner earlier this month, during which Sophie addressed the Club members expressing her thanks for their generosity. An excerpt from Sophie’s speech to the Rotary Club of Beecroft is below:

“The Philippines service project has had a profound effect on each girl who has gone, with all showing a new found appreciation for their lives and the many opportunities they are exposed to, a quality I hope to gain through this project. I am extremely excited to meet many people, both young and old, and give them a helping hand where necessary, or at the least, a smile and the knowledge that they are important and valued members of the global community, and I cannot wait to begin this journey of humility and service. Thank you to the Rotary Club of Beecroft for giving me this opportunity."

Last week, Tangara’s Year 11 leadership team took part the annual Mitchell Youth Leadership Forum at Vision Valley, along with hundreds of Year 11 students from the local area.

The Mitchell Youth Leadership Forum is a two-and-a-half-day live-in program for Year 11 students who reside in or nearby the Mitchell Electorate. Students are generally nominated by their schools and the program is strongly based around the values of service to others, integrity and courage. The program is operated by an excellent leadership team from the local area, including Tangara Old Girls Ronie Quinn and Jane Doherty, and Alex Hawke MP, Member for Mitchell, who serves as President of the Forum.

This year’s participants from Tangara included Taris Watson (School Captain), Charlotte Sarkis (Vice-Captain), Michaela Munasinghe (Community Service Captain), Annabelle Woodbury (Sports Captain), Anna Engesser (Creative and Performing Arts Captain), Isobel Patmore (Public Speaking), Ellessia Rinaldi (House Captain of Siena), Erika Mercado (House Captain of La Mancha), Kaitlin Dransfield (House Captain of Tintagel) and Sarah Sakr (House Captain of Atlantis).

The ten participants from Tangara were inspired by a great variety of guest speakers, workshops and leadership activities which were run during the course of the Forum in order to foster leadership skills in students entering their final year of school.

According to Isobel Patmore, Tangara’s Public Speaking Captain, the Forum was an excellent opportunity for School’s leader’s to plan for the year ahead.

“It was inspiring to be surrounded by likeminded students,” Isobel said.

“The Forum provides us with a chance to refine our goals for Tangara, its students, and for the School year.”

As part of the Forum, Tangara’s leaders took part in a Principal’s workshop with Dr Katrina George in order discuss goals for the School. These goals will be shared with the School in coming weeks.

Congratulations to all ten students from Year 11 for their election to the School Leadership team, and for their enthusiastic participation in the Mitchell Youth Leadership Forum. We look forward to hearing more from this strong team of leaders in the year ahead.

Over the weekend The Australian published its analysis of the top performing schools around the country, based on the 2015 NAPLAN results. Tangara has been named as one of 'The Nation's Top 100 Secondary Schools', ranking number 54.

This is an overwhelming achievement, especially considering the top 21 are all selective schools.

Tangara’s other published rankings include:

- no. 32 of all private, non-selective secondary schools in Australia;

- no. 31 of all secondary schools (public and private) in NSW (the top 21 are all selective);

- no. 25 of all girls schools in Australia!

Many people have contributed to the success of our students over the years, and we thank you each and every one of you. Well done and congratulations girls!