08

Creativity and Connections

On Friday 13 March 2020, our rowing and swimming seasons were cut short due to the rapidly changing situation surrounding COVID-19. Beyond our red brick walls, the Australian Grand Prix was cancelled and sporting events throughout Victoria and across the country were postponed as a matter of public health and safety.

Over the course of the day decisions continued to be redacted, communications unwound, and steps taken to 'make things right' voided.

Fast forward to 3.00pm. Head of Rowing, Angus Seller, called me from the banks of the Barwon to tell me that Head of Schoolgirls was off. The disbelief and emotion in his voice pulled at my heart. 

Since that day, the world has continued to move at a breathtaking pace. In the words of Vladimir Lenin “There are decades where nothing happens; and there are weeks where decades happen.”

Amidst this pace of change and uncertainty, it has been our Grammarians who have filled my bucket with hope and inspiration, and through their wisdom and perspective reminded me that amongst my greatest teachers in life are the young people with whom I have the privilege to work. 

No items found.
No items found.
No items found.

“There are decades where nothing happens; and there are weeks where decades happen.”

Vladimir Lenin

Prev
Next
No items found.

The courage demonstrated by our rowers in response to missing out on their chance to race at Head of Schoolgirls this year - the event that our Year 12s spend four years preparing for – is one such example. The moving words I received from our Captain and Vice-Captain of Boats are a testament to their commitment to the season, no matter how it ended.

“I think the best thing I have taken away from this season, is not only being a part of a winning culture, but the infectious mindset I inherited. The Merton Hall Rowing Club have the best morale and work ethic in the whole of Head of Schoolgirls and although we didn't get to put our best foot forward, the journey was the best part.

"Becoming faster and faster every session, breaking new times, being in so much pain you forgot where you were – those are the moments that will stick with me forever. Rowing has been the best thing I have ever done in my life. I am so grateful to Melbourne Girls Grammar for the opportunity, whether I won or not. I have been given the tools to set up my life - I am organised and self-sufficient and honestly, I don't think I would have acquired these skills had I not rowed. I have also found a passion for something so physically beneficial and rewarding, and that is something that I will carry with me throughout my life on and off the water. It has been an absolute pleasure to lead the MHRC 2019/20, hopefully they can go one better in 2020/21!”
Beatrix Chirnside, Captain of Boats 2019/2020
“The season ended abruptly, and while I could let my mind drift to the sadness this brings me, I try and reflect on the many months that lead up to Head of Schoolgirls. The season was an incredible one and I would not have changed one thing about it (apart from the ending). In times like this, I have learnt to shift my response to the situation and learn to grow from it and ultimately become more resilient.”
Millie Bennetts, Vice-Captain of Boats 2019/2020

The courage demonstrated by our rowers in response to missing out on their chance to race at Head of Schoolgirls this year - the event that our Year 12s spend four years preparing for – is one such example. The moving words I received from our Captain and Vice-Captain of Boats are a testament to their commitment to the season, no matter how it ended.

“I think the best thing I have taken away from this season, is not only being a part of a winning culture, but the infectious mindset I inherited. The Merton Hall Rowing Club have the best morale and work ethic in the whole of Head of Schoolgirls and although we didn't get to put our best foot forward, the journey was the best part.

"Becoming faster and faster every session, breaking new times, being in so much pain you forgot where you were – those are the moments that will stick with me forever. Rowing has been the best thing I have ever done in my life. I am so grateful to Melbourne Girls Grammar for the opportunity, whether I won or not. I have been given the tools to set up my life - I am organised and self-sufficient and honestly, I don't think I would have acquired these skills had I not rowed. I have also found a passion for something so physically beneficial and rewarding, and that is something that I will carry with me throughout my life on and off the water. It has been an absolute pleasure to lead the MHRC 2019/20, hopefully they can go one better in 2020/21!”
Beatrix Chirnside, Captain of Boats 2019/2020
“The season ended abruptly, and while I could let my mind drift to the sadness this brings me, I try and reflect on the many months that lead up to Head of Schoolgirls. The season was an incredible one and I would not have changed one thing about it (apart from the ending). In times like this, I have learnt to shift my response to the situation and learn to grow from it and ultimately become more resilient.”
Millie Bennetts, Vice-Captain of Boats 2019/2020

Whilst our whole rowing community have felt the effects of the season’s outcome, I think we can all feel assured that for all of us, the end is not the end.

There is always more to come. Sport and physical activity pursuits are powerful vehicles in which to create a sense of belonging, foster social connections and build healthy and vibrant communities. Sam Mostyn (a prominent leader in business, government and society) refers to sport as being the silent social worker. We’ve all seen examples of sport doing the heavy lifting for kids and communities when nothing else is available. So, what do we do when the world we now live in asks that we be physically distant and unable to coach or deliver sport in the way we know? We identify what’s truly important to us, we get creative and we explore a different way of doing things. 

Exercise remains as important as ever to help keep us physically and mentally fit and healthy. Throughout COVID-19 restrictions, exercise featured on the small list of reasons to leave home. When our students moved to remote learning late in Term 1, we encouraged every Grammarian to ‘Find Your 30+’ and promptly scheduled daily live fitness sessions, personalised home-based programs, run training, swimming challenges, snowsport comedy, lounge room acrobatics and netball skills, drills and spills.

'Find your 30+' refers to the recommendation of exercising for a minimum of 30 minutes of moderate to vigorous physical activity (MVPA) every day.

As physical distancing measures continued, we asked ourselves – what’s missing? The answer was connection. 

Our solution was to shape an inclusive dashboard of personalised, group and team training, sport, fitness and play-based options which allowed for both synchronous and asynchronous engagement so that students could continue to be in charge of their own time, and anchor it to a whole school virtual physical challenge. The Virtually Amazing Race was born – a 32-day House Challenge whereby it is the aim for every House to make their way around the coastline of Australia by collecting Daily Move Points. 

The Challenge was crafted so that every member of our Community from Prep to Year 12 could connect to a shared goal, and our House and Sport Captains could lead their respective tribes towards the Virtual Sprint Cup and the Virtual Marathon Cup. To add another element, the 6th competitor was a Melbourne Girls Grammar staff team. 

The beauty of this challenge was that everyone thought outside of the box about different ways to exercise – some particularly creative students even improvised to train for their sport of choice.

Whilst our whole rowing community have felt the effects of the season’s outcome, I think we can all feel assured that for all of us, the end is not the end.

There is always more to come. Sport and physical activity pursuits are powerful vehicles in which to create a sense of belonging, foster social connections and build healthy and vibrant communities. Sam Mostyn (a prominent leader in business, government and society) refers to sport as being the silent social worker. We’ve all seen examples of sport doing the heavy lifting for kids and communities when nothing else is available. So, what do we do when the world we now live in asks that we be physically distant and unable to coach or deliver sport in the way we know? We identify what’s truly important to us, we get creative and we explore a different way of doing things. 

Exercise remains as important as ever to help keep us physically and mentally fit and healthy. Throughout COVID-19 restrictions, exercise featured on the small list of reasons to leave home. When our students moved to remote learning late in Term 1, we encouraged every Grammarian to ‘Find Your 30+’ and promptly scheduled daily live fitness sessions, personalised home-based programs, run training, swimming challenges, snowsport comedy, lounge room acrobatics and netball skills, drills and spills.

'Find your 30+' refers to the recommendation of exercising for a minimum of 30 minutes of moderate to vigorous physical activity (MVPA) every day.

As physical distancing measures continued, we asked ourselves – what’s missing? The answer was connection. 

Our solution was to shape an inclusive dashboard of personalised, group and team training, sport, fitness and play-based options which allowed for both synchronous and asynchronous engagement so that students could continue to be in charge of their own time, and anchor it to a whole school virtual physical challenge. The Virtually Amazing Race was born – a 32-day House Challenge whereby it is the aim for every House to make their way around the coastline of Australia by collecting Daily Move Points. 

The Challenge was crafted so that every member of our Community from Prep to Year 12 could connect to a shared goal, and our House and Sport Captains could lead their respective tribes towards the Virtual Sprint Cup and the Virtual Marathon Cup. To add another element, the 6th competitor was a Melbourne Girls Grammar staff team. 

The beauty of this challenge was that everyone thought outside of the box about different ways to exercise – some particularly creative students even improvised to train for their sport of choice.

No items found.
Placeholder Caption
No items found.
No items found.
No items found.

Through collective effort, our Grammarians have demonstrated agility, creativity and a sense of unity. Who knows, perhaps it will become a legacy from this extraordinary time? For now – Go Batman! Go Clarke! Go Hensley! Go Mungo! Go Taylor!… and Go Navy and White!

Through collective effort, our Grammarians have demonstrated agility, creativity and a sense of unity. Who knows, perhaps it will become a legacy from this extraordinary time? For now – Go Batman! Go Clarke! Go Hensley! Go Mungo! Go Taylor!… and Go Navy and White!

Through collective effort, our Grammarians have demonstrated agility, creativity and a sense of unity. Who knows, perhaps it will become a legacy from this extraordinary time? For now – Go Batman! Go Clarke! Go Hensley! Go Mungo! Go Taylor!… and Go Navy and White!

Article written by

Sally Bailey

Executive Director, Artemis Programs

&

,

&