Thursday, 5 December 2013


This was the warm welcome given on Wednesday (27/11/13) to a special group of visitors from Armenia headed by Greta Mnatsakanyan, Head of Division of Culture, Sport and Youth Programs from RA Ministry of Diaspora.

The internationally renowned Armenian singers and musicians - Sona Shahgeldyan, Leyla Saribekyan, Tatevik Ayrumyan, Garik Saribekyan & Arsen Grigoryan were joined by the Australian Representative of the Diaspora Minister Mr Edvart Tarpinian and other committee members. The guests were greeted and welcomed by our Captain after being led into the hall. A special program was presented with songs, recitals and a brief outline of life at the school. The presentation encompassed different aspects of school life and was complemented with a showcase of slides on the big screen.

The guests were pleasantly surprised by the unique presentation and impressed by the student performance. In her return address, Greta Mnatsakanyan praising the students and the school in keeping the Armenian language and culture alive in a community far away from the homeland. She also presented the school a collection of resources that can be used in the Armenian Language and Culture lessons. The warm feelings that were generated inspired renowned singer Lelya Saribekyan to sing for the children. This was followed by Arsen Grigoryan who got everyone onto a ‘shourtchbar’ (circle dance)! The students also joined in the singing with Sona Shahgeldyan…. As a result, for a brief moment a ‘Little Armenia’ was created as we all proclaimed ‘Good Morning Armenia!’

Monday, 28 October 2013


On Tuesday (22/10/13) the students were treated to a delicious lunch thanks to the Year 3/4 class and our vegetable garden! Last week, Prep and Kindergarten students had harvested all the potatoes that were planted in our vegetable garden. They had even learnt to sort and count them to see if we would have enough to make a meal for everyone. Thanks to the support of Ms Smith we ended up having a variety of potato salads, wedges, baked potatoes, stuffed potatoes and even mashed potatoes!
It was great to see the children trying the different recipes and enjoying the meal with all their friends. Special thank you to all the families who supported the activity. The fresh potatoes were certainly given the thumbs up!


It was gratifying to see so many of our students and their families at the opening ceremony of the Children’s Art Exhibition on Saturday (19/10/13) evening. The exhibition for primary-aged children on the ‘Feast of the Holy Translators’ was organised by the coordinators of the ‘Sunday School’. It was under the auspices of His Grace Bishop Haigazoun Najarian, Primate of the Diocese of the Armenian Church.

Students had contributed individual artwork depicting the essence of the Armenian Alphabet and the founding fathers. After the opening of the curtain to unveil the wonderful art display in the Edgarian Hall, His Grace spoke warmly about the children and what they had produced. He was keen to talk to them and discover their thoughts and reasoning as to how, what and why they had produced their wonderful pieces of artwork in the way they had.

Guests had the opportunity to walk around and observe all the creative drawings, praising the children and encouraging them to continue producing wonderful pieces of art. The exhibition was on display until the following day.


The National Assessment Program - Literacy and Numeracy (NAPLAN) tests are conducted in May each year for all students across Australia in Years 3, 5, 7 and 9. All students in the same year level are assessed on the same test items in the assessment domains of Reading, Writing, Language Conventions (Spelling, Grammar and Punctuation) and Numeracy (Data, Measurement, Space and Geometry, Number, Patterns and Algebra).

Each year, over one million students nationally sit the NAPLAN tests, providing students, parents, teachers, schools and school systems with important information about the literacy and numeracy achievements of students. The results are also published on the ‘My School’ website.

This year the students should be proud of their efforts with no student scoring at or below the national minimum average in any area tested. The school averages were well above both the state and national averages. The charts below show the achievements of the school in comparison to the rest of the state and Australia.

As our parents are aware, the personalised education has always been the main feature of the Alexander classroom, made possible by the low student to teacher ratio. The excellent NAPLAN results across the whole school are here to reflect and state what we already know.

Monday, 16 September 2013


The students were treated to a great sporting experience on Wednesday, 4 September 2013, when they attended the Integrated Sports Day hosted by the Sydney Japanese School. After a fun warm up, the day started with running races. The students then showed their strength in the Tug-of-War. The teams were able to compete in Tamaire, a traditional Japanese game where balls are thrown into high baskets on poles. After stopping for lunch all students did the Ghenkis Khan dance. Next it was time for the Big Ball race. Each child also got the opportunity to take part in the long jump. After this everyone came together for the presentations. It was a fun day for all, filled with meeting new friends and great exercise.

Integrated Sports Day

Our school participated in the ‘Integrated Sports Day’. The schools who went to the Integrated Sports Day were the German School, Galstaun College, our school and the hosts the Sydney Japanese School. We did this from 10 o'clock until 2 o'clock. This means we were there for four hours! But the time went quickly. 
The schools that came to compete in the Integrated Sports Day came in Red, Green, Yellow and Blue coloured shirts. At the Sports day we participated in running races, long jump, dancing, tug-o-war, big ball race, throwing balls in the basket, soccer and AFL.
When we got there I felt nervous. I also felt very hot because it was a sunny day.

The favourite thing that I did at the Integrated Sports Day was playing the team game, balls in the basket. My team, the Green team, won that game. My second favourite part was the award ceremony because I received a certificate. I came equal first with Tyler Togo from the Japanese School in the sprint race.
At the Integrated Sports Day I met a friend from the Japanese School and the Galstaun College. The new friend I met from the Galstaun College was Ben. I didn't get the name of my friend from the Japanese School because he didn’t have a name tag. To improve the Integrated Sports day I would like to get a free lunch and also for me to win more races! :-)

Written By
Noah Smith (Year 3)


The annual Cross Country Run was held on Tuesday 27 August, 2013.

Thursday, 5 September 2013


Do you remember the days when you could take the car for a long drive along the coast or a short trip to the shops and were not contactable for that period of time?

If you saw something amazing along the way that you desperately wanted to share with family or friends, for example beautiful scenery or a great dress, you had to wait until you got to a pay phone or house landline before you could explain what it was.

If you were able to take a photo of yourself with the amazing backdrop, you first had to use up the rest of your camera film, then take it to be developed, and then wait for the photos to come back until you could send them through via snail mail.

There was no difference in relation to work. If you had to travel interstate or even across the city, you were faced with the prospect of being totally disconnected from the office for an entire day or more. Even if you were to meet up with colleagues for a simple meeting, it involved everyone agreeing on a landmark and time, rather than a quick text or sms asking them ‘where are you?’ once you got close to the location.

No social media updates, no email, no wifi cloud and definitely no digital cameras with GPS, for an instant upload of your location and snapshot...

While the technology of today has certainly made things easier and saved us lots of time, we are starting to find it harder and harder to clock-off, thanks to the limitless ability to log on. Therefore, what does this 24/7 connectedness mean for our children in the future? How will they cope to manage this in their professions? When you think about it, many professionals who are working in the evening and on weekends from home are starting to see it as part and parcel of the job - certainly school staff fall into that category and always have, regardless of the technology at their fingertips. In fact, educators need to be the forerunners in being globally connected to lead the way for their students, because as it is stated: “If we don’t provide our students the chance to connect on a global level, we are not preparing them for the future…”

You may think its too early for a primary school to be considering this aspect of technology in education, but you only need to look around you and monitor the level of connectedness your child has with the ‘small screen’ to realise that you may in fact be too late.

Here at Alexander school, we certainly have embraced the collaborative connectedness that has taken shape since the introduction of ‘Google Apps for Education’. Students and teachers alike are starting to make the connection in new and innovative ways, crossing the boundaries of the classroom with effective ‘cloud’ computing. As we move further in this direction, in particular with the senior students, we also need to ensure that at the same time we are equipping them with the right tools of management.

Next term, parents will have the opportunity to witness and experience how this new technology is being utilised at the school with a special demonstration evening.

Manoug Demirjian

Tuesday, 3 September 2013


News from the Armenian Classroom...


Օգոստոս ամսուայ առաջին երեք շաբաթներուն ընթացքին, Հ.Բ.Ը.Մ. Ալեքսանտր Վարժարանի ուսուցչական կազմն ու աշակերտութիւնը, մեծ հաճոյքն ու բախտաւորութիւնը ունեցան վայելելու ներկայութիւնը, Հայրենիքէն յատկապէս Սիտնի գործուղուած` Մանկավարժուհի եւ Հայոց Լեզուի եւ Տարրական Ուսուցման Մեթոտի մասնագետ Տոքտ. Փրոֆ. Տիկ. Ճուլիէթա Կիւլամիրեանը:

Տիկ. Ճուլիէթան` իր Աւստրալիա ժամանման յաջորդ օրն իսկ, արդեն լուծուեցաւ աշխատանքի, ի շահ Սիտնիի բոլոր Հայկական վարժարաններու ուսուցչական կազմերուն, որոնց հետ անհատական եւ հաւաքական հանդիպումներ ունենալով, փոխանձեց իր երկար տարիներու մանկավարժական մասնագիտութեամբ մօտեցումները եւ Հայերէն լեզուի դասաւանդման ու խօսքի զարգացման մեթոտները:

Սփիւռքի այս հեռաւոր ափերուն վրայ, մենք` ուսուցիչներս շատ կարեւոր դեր մը ունինք, միշտ վառ պահելու մեր ազգային ոգին, որպէսզի կարողանանք մեր նոր սերունդին փոխանձել այն ամէնը, որ մեր պապերէն հասած են մեզ.-

{ Հայաշունչ մթնոլորտի մէջ իրենց տալ մեր ոսկեղնիկ մայրենի լեզուն, հարուստ գրականութիւնն ու դարաւոր պատմութիւնը:
{ Ծանօթացնել մեր ազգային եւ պատմական դէմքերուն:
{ Եւ իրենց զինել Հայ ազգի զաւակ ըլլալու հպարտ հոգիով:

Հայրենիքէն հեռու ըլլալով մեր ուղղին բաւական դժուար է ու խոչընդոտներով լի: Թէեւ մենք մեր կարելին կ’ընենք այդ դժուարութիւնները յաղթահարել եւ հասնիլ մեր նպատակակէտին, սակայն վերապատրաստման այսպիսի ծրագիրներ մեզ կը վերանորոգեն եւ կը զինեն հոգեկան նոր ուժով մը, աւելի աշխուժութեամբ եւ նոր մեթոտներով շարունակելու եւ կատարեալին հասցնելու մեզ յանձնուած առաքելութիւնը:

Հաճելի էր դէպի դպրոց ճամբորդութիւնը, այս երեք շաբաթուան Երկուշաբթի եւ Հինգշաբթի առաւօտները, երբ Տիկին Ճուլիէթան կ’ընկերանար ինձ եւ մենք միասին խօսելով եւ մտքեր փոխանակելով` աւելի ճիշդ իր հարուստ գիտելիքներէն ես օգտուելով, մենք կը հասնէինք դէպի դպրոց, առանց զգալու մեր ճամբորդութեան երկարութիւնը:

Հ.Բ.Ը.Մ. Ալեքսանտր Վարժարանէն ներս Տիկին Ճուլիէթան ներկայ գտնուեցաւ Արեւմտահայերէն, Արեւելահայերէն եւ Հայոց Պատմութեան պահերուն, իր խրախուսական ու քաջալերական խօսքերով, իր մանկավարժական հարուստ գիտելիքները մեր հետ կիսուելով, ոչինչ խնայեց մեզ ոգեւորելու եւ մեր ուղղին աւելի դիւրացնելու, որպէսզի աշակերտ եւ ուսուցիչ աւելի դիւրութեամբ կտրենք Հայերէն լեզուի ուսուցման եւ իւրացման լուսաւոր ու գեղեցիկ ճամբան:

Տիկին Ճուլիէթայի երեք շաբաթուայ ներկայութիւնը` մեր մէջ ձգեց քաղցր յուշեր եւ մանկավարժական հիանալի դասաւանդման մեթոտներ, որոնք վստահաբար որպէս թանկարժէք գանձեր պիտի մնան մեր մէջ եւ հնարաւորութիւն պիտի տան մեզ կազմակերպուելու եւ դիւրացնելու մեր ուսուցման ուղղին, իսկ աշակերտին գրաճանաչութեան, ընթերցանութեան եւ խօսքի զարգացման յաջող ուղղին:

Շնորհակալութիւն Տիկին Ճուլիէթա: Թող Բարձրեալն Աստուած ձեզ պարգեւէ երկար տարիներու առողջ եւ երջանիկ օրեր, որպէսզի շարունակէք ձեր նուիրական ու հայապահպան առաքելութիւնը:

Սեդա Քէօշկէրեան

Monday, 2 September 2013


On Tuesday (20/8/2013), as part of our Book Week activities the students travelled to the Sydney Japanese School to take part in a special performance called ‘Rubbish’ by Mic Conway (the original Captain Feather Sword!) who presented a show to learn about the 3R’s (Reduce, Reuse, Recycle).

“Magic Mic” Conway got the message across with a circus of comedy, magic and mayhem! He put the fun into Recycling with all kinds of junk musical instruments. He Reused the garbage out of the bin to make magic and Reduced his audience to tears of laughter with his songs and serious silliness!

Musical garbage bins and rubbish, junk costumes, light juggling, magic with water bottles and cans, ripping newspapers, a cranky little boy puppet and loads of audience participation made for a load of rubbish! - entertaining and educational rubbish.

Tuesday, 20 August 2013


AGBU Alexander Primary School has a proud history of service to the community. We have always strived to show a positive school image and have led our students to become active participants and contributors of the community. This notion was reemphasised recently with the objective of working further to enhance the way our students are portrayed in the general public. We take great pride in the way our students are presented in their uniform, in their manner and hospitality during formal and informal occasions.

With this objective in mind, the school decided to join the after church volunteer service of providing coffee/tea and sweets to the parishioners. The idea was presented to the Armenian Apostolic Church Council of Holy Resurrection and was enthusiastically accepted.

Students of Years 5 & 6 have since joined this service on a number of occasions to help with the provision and distribution of sweets. It certainly is a great way of connecting with the community and portraying the proud image of the school.


Over the past three weeks we have had the honour of hosting a distinguished guest from Armenia.

Prof. Julieta Gyulamiryan, Doctor of Philological Sciences and Professor of the Chair of the Armenian Language and the Methodology of Elementary Education was in Sydney as the guest of the Armenian day and Saturday schools. She arrived with the support of the Armenian Minister for the Diaspora to provide assistance and professional development to the Armenian language teachers.

During her visits, she joined and observed the Armenian lessons to later assist and provide individual feedback and guidance to the teachers. Our teachers also joined with colleagues from other schools in after-school seminars that have provided enrichment and ideas to enhance the instruction of the Armenian language.

Our guest brought with her years of vast experience in the field of educational instruction. She has authored numerous textbooks that are used today in schools across Armenia and the Diaspora. She has carried out teacher training and provided methodical guidelines for Armenian schools in a number of communities including Syria, Iran, United Arab Emirates, Kuwait, Moscow, Sochi, Georgia and Abkhazia.

The parents also had the opportunity to meet and share in her knowledge during a special parent’s seminar.

Thursday, 15 August 2013


Last week our debating team travelled to Sydney Japanese School for their last debate of the competition. Our topic was ‘Space Exploration is worth the money’. APS consisting of Samuel, Ani, Jonathan and Kevork were the affirmative and SJS, the negative.

It was a very challenging debate right from the beginning. Arguments and rebuts were being exchanged, we were even able to repair a rebut the negative team presented to us! Unfortunately the debate was awarded to the Sydney Japanese School. Now this meant that we had both won 3 out the 4 debates and both of us were progressing through to the finals.

Thank you must go to Mrs Laura Demirjian for helping with transport on the day.

In class we are busily planning our fantastic arguments and rebuts for ‘New is Better’ that we will present next Wednesday 14th August at the German International School. We invite any Year 5 & 6 parents to come along to see the great work that we have done in debating and join in the party afterwards!

Mrs Meaghan Terrey — Debating Coordinator

Monday, 5 August 2013


On Thursday 25th July, Years 4-6 travelled to CARES in St Ives to learn about road and bike safety.

Constable Cooper met us at the reception and she drove us down in groups to the CARES track.

First we spoke about the rules and safety at CARES, what helmets we should be wearing and the Australian Standards that they should pass.

Next we lined up to receive our bikes for the day. Constable Cooper adjusted our seats and checked that our helmets were correct. There were two students whose helmets were either too small or two big so had to borrow ones from the centre.

We then wheeled our bikes down to the obstacle course. Firstly we had to weave in and out of the cones, then ride in a straight line to the stop sign and use our hand signal for stopping. We practiced this a few more times riding up and down the course.

After recess, we went inside to watch bike education videos. These consisted of what rules you should follow when riding on the road, what to look for in a helmet and the horrible injuries that can happen if we don’t wear a helmet.

After lunch, we headed down to the mini road course that everyone was looking forward to. We even had a special visitor who wanted to join our group – the resident Wallaby! Constable Cooper walked us around the track pointing out what the signs meant and how we should obey
them. These signs were a stop sign and a solid white line which means you have to stop, Children’s crossing, that you must stop at, Zebra crossing where you don’t have to stop but slow down and scan. Traffic lights like we see on the road, a roundabout, Turn left at anytime with care, Give way. There were two cul-de-sacs where you could have a rest or make a u-turn and a few speed bumps.

After learning all the road rules we were let loose on the track! Each of us had a licence with 13 points and Mrs Terrey and Constable Cooper were watching us just like the police do, and if we disobeyed any road rules we were pulled over and points were taken off us. Some of us were a little over excited and broke some rules and others had a perfect riding record!

Overall we had a fantastic time, the weather was beautiful and made the experience that much better. Thank you to Mrs Terrey, Mr Manoug, Mrs Seta, Mrs Topouzian and Mrs Betchakjian for helping with transport.

By Christine Boyadjian and Samuel Tateossian


On Sunday, 28 July the Alexander School Choir performed at a community ‘Fundraising Dinner’ organised by the Joint Committee for Syrian Armenian Relief (SOMM).

Our students joined the evening’s program of cultural performances by singing two songs appropriate for the event. Once again, they did a wonderful job and were well received by the audience. The event was supported by around 500 community members and helped raise over $80,000 in donations.

During the evening, $250 was donated on behalf of Alexander school students. The amount was raised through the fundraising efforts of our students. A special ‘Thank You’ to Mrs Sonia Apanian and Mrs Maggie Betchakjian who contributed to the effort by respectively donating and preparing the lunch special as part of this fundraising.

Below source: Armenian Apostolic Church of Holy Resurrection.

Sunday, 28 July 2013


On Sunday, 21 July 2013 a group of students from AGBU Alexander Primary School took part in a joint community concert on the occasion of ‘Vartavar’. The event was organised by the coordinators of the Armenian Apostolic Church Sunday School. Our students performed together with a group of students from Galstaun College and the AGBU Alex Manougian Saturday School.
The concert was held in the Edgarian Hall, following the Sunday Mass. In attendance were His Grace
Bishop Haigazoun Najarian, clergy, members of the church council and community at large. They were all delighted by the wonderful performance and the quality of the presentation put forward by all the students.
Once again, students of Alexander school put on a magnificent display receiving the praise of His Grace and the audience. It was a great display of community spirit and cooperation for the benefit of the children.
We would like to take this opportunity and thank the parents for their cooperation. Special thank you to Mrs Seta Keoshgerian for her assistance in preparing the students and supporting the organising committee.

Sunday, 21 July 2013


The last Thursday of the school term saw the culmination of our Asian Studies in HSIE. The celebrations started with a delicious lunch of Thai fried rice, chicken satay sticks, butter chicken, roti bread, spring rolls and sushi. For dessert the students were able to get an insight into their futures by choosing a sweet tasting fortune cookie. Then students were then able to share the knowledge they had gained about their Asian country in our special assembly.

After presenting the information they had learnt about India Years 1 & 2 acted out a shadow puppet performance of the traditional Indian folktale ‘The Little Mice and the Big Elephants.’ They then entertained us by playing the Indian melody of ‘Baak bakum paira’. Years 3 & 4 presented their enthralling knowledge of Thailand. They translated some common words into Thai and taught us how to say these words. They then told the traditional Thai tale of ‘In and Na’. Years 5 & 6 presented their extensive knowledge of Japan. The school learnt how to count to ten in Japanese with the Year 5/6 guidance. The students were fascinated to see the 5/6 photographic chronicle of the making of sushi rolls. Lastly we were entertained by the Prep - 2, as they used the Indian hand movements of ‘hastas’ to represent animals in a dance performance.   

The children were able to dress in the appropriate costume of the country. All the students had a great educational experience learning about some of the unique customs and aspects of the daily life of the three Asian countries studied.

Thank you to all the teachers for organising the event and helping prepare the food and dress the children.

Tuesday, 25 June 2013


This week’s debating topic really tested Years 5 & 6s brainpower. The topic was “Sixteen should be the voting age.” Alexander School was the negative side against John Colet. Yet again, our planning really prepared us to speak and argue really well. Our case line was we believed sixteen should not be the voting age as 16 year olds are not mature enough to handle the responsibility of deciding who should run our country. Our team consisted of Samuel, Kevork, Ani and Jonathan.

Each team member spoke extremely confidently, clearly and with great expression in their voices. Our rebuttals were clear and made sense.
Our first speakers’ arguments were 16 year olds brains are not mature enough yet, politics has no real relevance and they won’t take the process seriously. Our second speakers’ arguments were they are not responsible enough yet, voting can be confusing and it might convince them they can do other things that may endanger their lives.
In the end we were declared the clear winners with the adjudicators making mention of how expressive our speakers were and the amount of clear rebuttals our team used.
Thank you to Mrs Sossie Giragosian who was able to help  transport Year 5 & 6 to the debate.
Mrs Meaghan Terrey
Debating Coordinator


For writing this week, Prep and Kindy learnt and wrote a procedure on how to make fairy bread. We needed a knife, a plate, bread, butter and Hundreds & Thousands.

This was the procedure that we wrote:

1. Put the bread on a plate.

2. Spread the butter on the bread with a knife.

3. Sprinkle the Hundreds & Thousands over the bread.

4. Cut the bread in half and eat it!

We made enough Fairy Bread to share with everyone. It was a lot of fun to make and even more fun to eat!

By Prep, Kindy and Mrs Terrey


On Tuesday 18 June 2013, our children turned out magnificently in Green and Gold to cheer on the Socceroos in their match against Iraq. They all looked cheerful and bright and there certainly had been a lot of care and consideration put into turning out in the National Colours. We had banners and signs in support of the Socceroos and even tried to gain the support of passers by!

Well done everyone for a splendid effort. We believe it was our cheering and support that got the Socceroos to win and qualify for the World Cup Finals to be held in Brazil next year.

Sunday, 16 June 2013


All students in Year 3-6 now have an account on the school domain with ‘Google Apps for Education’. As I have stated before, the time has come for schools to embrace the idea of integrating technology and do ‘different things’ in the classroom. We need to empower our students, the employees of the 21st Century, to think outside the box and do different things in order to have a competitive edge over their counterparts and become masters of their fields. We need our students to become ‘co-constructors of knowledge’ rather than one expert telling them what they know. ‘Google Docs’ is one of the tools that helps to achieve this by providing opportunities for students and teachers to work more effectively in a collaborative environment.

Students are progressively being introduced to their Goggle Apps. They have so far setup and personalised their ‘Gmail’, ‘Calendar’ and are now starting to create documents using ‘Google Docs’.  This online office suite is the core foundation allowing users to create word processing documents, slideshow presentations, and spreadsheets. Students will no longer need to have ‘Microsoft Office’ or a similar product installed to create and save documents. Most importantly, these documents can be worked on collaboratively in real-time, by both staff and students. They can then share it with their teacher or class as required. Students will no longer need to transport documents to school via flash drives or by attaching them to emails that they send to themselves. The work they start at school can be completed at home and be shared or presented to their teacher with great ease… this is ‘Cloud’ computing and we are right on top of it!

Manoug Demirjian



We would like to congratulate Talar Kapterian and Serop Aslanian who completed their university degrees at end of last year and were recently awarded with their certificates. We are proud of their achievements and wish them all the best in the future.

Serop Aslanian

Bachelor of Laws (Honours)
Macquarie University

APS Enrolment: 1995-2001

Serop joined the Alexander School Board last year and continues to serve.

Talar Kapterian

Bachelor of Education (Primary)
University of Technology Sydney

APS Enrolment: 1995-2001

Talar will join the teaching staff of Alexander School next term when Mrs Terrey is on maternity leave.

To Grow & Serve!


National Reconciliation Week (NRW) is celebrated across Australia each year between 27th May and 3rd June. The dates commemorate two significant milestones in the reconciliation journey - the anniversaries of the successful 1967 Referendum and the High Court ‘Mabo’ decision. The week celebrates and builds on the respectful relationships shared by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and other Australians. It is a time for all Australians to learn about our shared histories, cultures and achievements and to explore how each of us can join the national reconciliation effort.

Reconciliation involves building positive, respectful relationships between Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and other Australians; enabling us to work together to close the gaps, and to achieve a shared sense of fairness and justice. ‘Closing the Gap’ describes the actions that schools, governments, businesses and the community can take to help achieve equality of life expectancy, education and employment for all Australians.

The ultimate goal of reconciliation is to build strong and trusting relationships between Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and other Australians, as a foundation for success and to enhance our national wellbeing.

As part of this celebration, Year 3/4 students marked the occasion with a special assembly on Thursday, 30 May. They spoke about the history of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples in Australia and around the school. They shared stories and described the discovery of Aboriginal rock carvings on bush tracks near the school. Well done to all the students involved and thank you Ms Smith for organising the event.

Monday, 27 May 2013


On Wednesday, Years 5 & 6 travelled to Galstaun College to present their negative side of the debate “We are responsible enough to choose what we eat.” Kevork, Jessica, Ani and Samuel were our successful team debating the German School.

Our first speaker's arguments dazzled the adjudicators. Kevork spoke about the consequences of an unhealthy diet and the health problems that can occur such as dental issues and Diabetes. Our second speaker, Jessica argued about bad role modelling, tempting food advertisements and confusing nutritional information labels. We debated really well, following the correct structure for each speaker and rebutting the affirmative teams arguments.

The second debate of the day was between John Colet and Sydney Japanese School. Their topic was "City children have the advantage." This was another interesting debate. The Sydney Japanese School was the winner.

As it stands in the competition, Alexander Primary has won 2 out of 2 debates, John Colet has won 1 and Sydney Japanese School has won 1.

A huge thank you must go to Mr Serge Manoukian who was able to help in our hour of need to transport our class to the debate.

Our next debate is Week 8 on Wednesday 19th June.

Mrs Meaghan Terrey
Debating Coordinator


On Tuesday 21st May, Krikor, Stella, Serly and I went on a trip to the Kinma School in Duffys Forest. When Mr Manoug dropped us off we gathered in their big hall. A person asked for our names to put in a basket. After all our names were put in, we had to pick out a name and write it down on a piece of rectangle paper. You had to write it as neatly as possible with decorations. Then we had to find the person whose name we had written.

After this, all the schools had interviews with each other. Questions that were asked were what their name was and what they like about their school? After the interviews, we went to eat morning tea. There were all sorts of yummy things like gluten and dairy free chocolate cake, chocolate covered biscuits and cupcakes. We ate a lot so we wouldn’t get hungry in between the events. We played on the playground for a little while and then a photographer took a photo of us all.

When the photos were taken, we went back into the hall to continue the interviews. Right after this, the Kinma School showed us a video clip about what ‘Friendship Day’ is and about their 627 metre long friendship bracelet. The clip was very fascinating. After this we began making our own friendship bracelets. It was a bit tricky but we got the hang of it!

During this session, they announced that we were going to their creek after lunch. We were certainly looking forward to that!

At lunch we ate Spaghetti Bolognaise with parmesan cheese on top then played some soccer.

After this we went on a bushwalk to see their creek. On the way we picked up walking sticks and used them for the big hills. We also found bushes filled with Honeysuckles. We collected these and ate them on the way back.

When we finished our bushwalk, Mrs Apanian came and picked us up to take us back to school.

We had such a great time and made lots of new friends.

By Jonathan

Wednesday, 22 May 2013


Last Wednesday, Alexander Primary School participated in the ‘Debating Workshop’ held at the Sydney Japanese School. This week we hosted the first debate of the ‘Forest District Interschool Debating Competition’. Our debating team consisted of Christine, Jessica, Ani and Jonathan with Samuel and Kevork acting as timekeeper and chairperson. We were the affirmative team for the first debate “Computers are good for us”. Our first speaker’s arguments were that computers are useful for research and homework purposes, they teach us responsibility and they increase technological skills of school aged students. Our second speaker’s arguments were about entertainment value, opening our eyes to the world and educational games.

Galstaun College was the negative team in the debate. We were able to argue and rebut their team’s case strongly so that we were victorious.

The second debate of the day was between the German International School and John Colet. Their topic was “Contact sports do more good than harm.” There were many good arguments presented by both sides. The negative team John Colet were the winners in the end.

I would like to congratulate every student in Years 5 and 6 for their hard work in preparing arguments for and against the topic. Also the work that they all did in coming up with rebuttals that they might be able to use during the debate and many of them did come in handy. 

Good luck for the next debate, to be held on Wednesday 22nd May at Galstaun College.

Mrs Meaghan Terrey - Debating Coordinator