October, 2023

Marnkutyi Parirna Theatre Official Opens

October 30, 2023

On Monday 16 October, staff, students and special guests gathered to celebrate the official opening of the new Marnkutyi Parirna (Three Rivers) Theatre.

Marnkutyi Parirna is Kaurna language for Three Rivers. As the six College schools are spread across Gawler and surrounding areas, the name reflects this localised setting acknowledging the North Para River, South Para River and Gawler River with the connecting point known as the Three Rivers site.

The new theatre will give students of all ages the opportunity to showcase their artistic talents and provides multiple leaning and gathering spaces for a wide variety of educational and community uses including dramatic arts, dance and oratory performances, ensembles, soirees, information evenings, social functions and exhibitions.

The College has a strong tradition of performing arts and, a highlight of the official proceedings was the induction of the old scholar and international cabaret artist Libby O’Donovan (1993) as the inaugural inductee in the College Arts Hall of Fame.

In choosing Libby the College considered several criteria including career highlights. Leadership, contribution and character. What set Libby apart was not only her outstanding talent and versatility but also her support and mentorship of emerging artists, as well as her continued support of the College and its students. In 2022 Libby was included on the Queen’s Birthday Honours List when she received a Medal for the Order of Australia for services to jazz and cabaret.

It’s a Wrap! 2023 Whole College Musical Delights Audiences

October 23, 2023

After months of preparations, the 2023 College Musical “Bring it On” wowed audiences last weekend over four performances in the new Marnkutyi Parirna Theatre.

The cast, crew and orchestra created a truly unique whole College event, producing a show that was an explosion of colour and movement and featured a host of energetic and memorable tunes that had audience members toe tapping along.

This year, the cast featured 12 principle roles, 14 ensemble players and seven dancers. The cast was supported by a ten-piece student orchestra conducted by Emma Knights. Direction was by Kristy Triantafilakis and Melanie Lavis and choreography was provided by old scholar Caley Watt (2018).

The production has received an outstanding independent review from Brian Godfrey, for the Theatre Association of South Australia who attended the Saturday night performance.

“This production blows one away from the moment the curtain opens, with dazzling optics setting the scene for the energetic ride of a lifetime. It’s exhilarating to see such talent exude from these young adults. In a cast of 33 (12 of whom are principal roles) there is absolutely no weak link!” Read his full review here.

Congratulations to everyone involved in the 2023 production, you should all be pleased and proud to have created such a successful, entertaining and memorable show. Special thanks also to all the teachers, parents and wider community who contributed to such a fabulous musical!

Learning Dispositions: A Day in Action

October 23, 2023

At the start of Term 3, all teachers at Gawler River gathered to design thinking disposition activities for students that encourage and enhance our College’s prescribed Learning Dispositions.

Collectively, teachers used the complex capability of creativity to strategically prepare innovative and interactive learning opportunities that engaged students to confidently use their qualities and characteristics to successfully complete an activity by adapting and approaching their learning in a variety of ways.

The result of the planning session a Learning Disposition: A Day in Action was set for Thursday 14 September, when all Gawler River students stepped into a world where they embraced responsibility of their educational journey, harnessing the power of collaboration, courage, creativity, curiosity, reflection, resilience and self-regulation.

Teachers witnessed students (who are more than just learners) being the architects of their own growth and success. Students were guided by their insatiable curiosity, fearlessly asking questions and exploring the depths of knowledge.

With courage as their companion, they embraced challenges as opportunities and setbacks as stepping stones toward their goals.

Creativity flowed through every aspect of their education, turning concepts into vibrant creations.

Reflection was their compass, guiding them towards deeper understanding through thoughtful analysis of their experiences.

Collaboration became second nature, as they embraced the power of shared knowledge.

They utilised self-regulation, taking control of their learning journey and nurturing a sense of responsibility.

Resilience was evidently showcased as they tackled obstacles head-on, undeterred by adversity and emerged stronger and more determined.

This transformation is not a solitary endeavour. Learning Dispositions: A Day in Action showcased a whole school approach, where the child’s educational community united to nurture our dispositions. Teachers worked alongside students as mentors and facilitators, creating an environment where the Learning Dispositions flourished.

The significance of learning dispositions in shaping well-rounded individuals ready to conquer the future is a valued lifelong quality that guides students towards growth, achievement and a future filled with endless possibilities.

Source: Natalie Bent (Head of Junior School) and Lauren Schwarze (Head of Middle School)