College – Issue 39



ISSUE 39 Contents



Digging deeper for improved teaching and learning 04 Leading the House – a privilege and a responsibility 06

The backstage boys of Chapel




Anzac memories and war graves visits

58 60

Could you do it?


The Carrington Brothers

Boarders cope in lockdown 10 Immerse & Inspire provides a taste of boarding life 11

News & Events

The College Project spreads its wings

66 68 70 72 73

Community & Service

Covid-19 – how we coped

Verbally outwitting your opponents

Shave for a cure – buzz cuts all round Haper House supports its charity

14 16 18 20

College clear winner in programming contest

A change for good

A qualification for the asking

John set on completing Gold award



Annual Appeal 2020

74 75 76 77 78

Upper West – a step closer

Eyes wide open

22 24 26

Oceans, farms and rhododendrons

Holiday programme suits international students

Comfort is key

A German exchange to treasure

Doing it for the kids

Character, Wellbeing & Positive Education

Gratitude to our invaluable sponsors 79 Community Business Directory – make it your first call! 82

Learning how to lead with integrity Wellbeing team – supporting our boys A journey of growth and discovery

28 30 31

The Quadrangle

From the President

84 85 86 88 90 92 94 95 98 98


New-look electronic newsletter Supporting College with distinction Guy finds his niche in sports journalism

Enthralling, irresistable Evita 

34 40 44

Somes wins REACTION House Plays Festival

A future-focused entrepreneur

Corfe House’s night of glory

Innovative business ideas impress judges

Reunion reports Community events


What's on – CCOBA 2020/2021 Calendar

Great form for winter sport

46 53 54


Thomson Trophy in College hands One of the best 1st XV games of all

GARTH WYNNE From our Executive Principal

As I reflect on the winter phase of our school in 2020, I do so with admiration for the staff, students and parents who make up the community of College. We have passed through a most extraordinary time as we have faced the complexity of a world pandemic and all that has meant at a local, national and international level. We have carried on amidst ever changing demands and have achieved a great deal. During this time, we have been witness to some of the most incredible and deplorable leadership imaginable as countries have grappled with the ‘value’ of life. We have seen the true reality of the socio-economic divide that marks for our planet and our country, those with and without the most basic of resources. We have seen individuals both rise and fall as they have faced the reality of coming to terms with that which they cannot control. Each of us has been challenged by existential questions, as we have found ourselves shut in, shut off and shut out.

College has been fortunate in so many ways through this period. How lucky we are to be situated in a small provincial city in the South Island of one of the most remote countries in the world. How lucky we are to live in a country where a trust of science and a trust in government have combined to save lives. How lucky we are that in times of confusion and potential distress, we have been able to fall on our faith-inspired understanding of where we fit in the universe and our contemporary appreciation of the actions we can take to sustain our personal and collective wellbeing. This magazine celebrates a College that is grateful for the opportunities we have had in times when so many have had so much taken away…


Garth Wynne Christ’s College Executive Principal

Christ’s College Magazine Issue 39, Winter 2020

Director of Advancement: Claire Sparks +64 3 364 6803

College Magazine Writers: Jocelyn Johnstone Catherine Hurley Graphic Designer: Melissa Hogan +64 3 364 8655

Change of Address: Admissions Registrar

Sarah Fechney +64 3 364 6836

Printing : Caxton

ACADEMIC Digging deeper for improved teaching and learning

College teachers are digging deeper into the pedagogy of teaching with the help of specialist consultant Tabitha Leonard. And 100 prompt cards are helping them take the first steps, inviting them to articulate their own values. In an effort to recognise their true personal values, Heads of Teaching

& Learning Warren Lidstone, Katie Southworth, Graeme Swanson and Melissa Campbell, and Assistant Principal – Curriculum Nicole Billante, have been exploring the values that drive each of them to teach, and the values that drive the manner in which they do so. “The big question is – do they align?” says Warren Lidstone, Head of Arts, Technology & Language for College’s Centre for Teaching Excellence & Research, who found the exercise confirmed what he had always regarded as his values.

“But it also explained to me why there is sometimes a gap between the students and the teacher.” Nicole says the idea of teaching as inquiry – to strive for continual improvement and to reflect on your performance and knowledge – is part of the New Zealand Curriculum and fundamental to ensuring success for all students. Auckland-based Tabitha Leonard, who formerly taught at Saint Kentigern College, now works alongside educational leaders and

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examines skills and collaborative and inclusive ways to reframe the purpose of inquiry. “We’ve been on this journey for the last couple of years, working on coaching methods and frameworks,” says Nicole, “but it’s challenging now to have Tabitha to take us even further. “In a way, it’s an innate progression. The idea of teacher inquiry is teacher driven, it’s about them thinking ‘I need to develop a skill to improve myself for my students’.” With three visits planned in all, Tabitha is challenging the Heads of Teaching & Learning in other ways, too. “Now we’re doing work on active listening, for example.” Nicole says once she and the Heads of Teaching & Learning have completed the sessions, the idea is to spread the method to all teaching staff. “Our goal is to have inquiry as a way of being. It will be about

asking the teachers to reflect on their styles and values, and to continually develop. Asking them to recognise what they do well, and helping them to leverage that to build capabilities in areas where they might not feel as confident. “Our aim at College is to have each boy at his best, and through the work of the CTER we aim to have each teacher at their best as well. Every one of us is a teacher who has different things to offer. Tabitha’s work is about teachers being authentic, getting better every day.” Nicole says the silver lining of the lockdown experience was the opportunity it gave for teachers to think about things differently. “Teaching life is intense during term time, and it was wonderful to have some space when pedagogy was a priority. “Lockdown was a leveller. It helped people see there can be something positive in reconsidering things sometimes.”

“ Our goal is to have inquiry as a way of being. It will be about asking the teachers to reflect on their

classroom teachers to build their capability and capacity as inquiring practitioners. She has developed a strategy which provides an opportunity to consider different ways teachers gain insight into learning in the classroom. Her course teaches how to leverage shifts in both teaching pedagogy and student learning, and styles and values, and to continually develop .” Nicole Billante

College Issue 39 2020


ACADEMIC Leading the House – a privilege and a responsbility

by example and getting stuck into House events and life. That whenever there were interhouse events the whole House turned up to support and create a good culture for the boys competing.” Guy Chaffey, Head of School House agrees. “The biggest challenge has been to try and involve the whole House in activities and not just 60% of the boys. I’ve charged the boys to get involved as much as possible and the highlight, as a result, is seeing each boy in the House with a smile on his face enjoying every moment.” For Charlie Chubb, Head of Somes, the highlight “was winning the House Play for the first time in Somes House history.” “After the boys came out of a difficult lockdown, they were thrown into the deep end, having only three weeks to choose, rehearse and produce the play. That win certainly felt good!” Head of Julius, Kynan Salt says keeping the House connected during lockdown and keeping the House spirit burning, were big challenges. “But they taught me great skills. One way of keeping connected was using social media as a House. We would set up daily challenges for the boys to complete, competing against each other.

Fletcher Anderson, Head of Condell’s House feels his organisational skills have been tested, but he’s learnt that by thinking and planning ahead, he can comfortably handle the demands. “This role has allowed me to develop some very important leadership skills, that being personable and friendly is much more valuable than demanding things from the boys.” William Koko, Head of Rolleston House says keeping a boy’s sense of community within the House over the internet, as occurred during lockdown, was not the easiest thing. “Making sure the boys heard from me was a good way of keeping some sense of House spirit. But it was also important to give each boy some space in that time of great change and turbulence.” House spirit is an intangible generational institution at College. William was most proud of his boys when, coming last in one of the Athletic Day’s relays, the whole House ran alongside the last man. “That showed all the values that Rolleston stands for – not coming first or medalling, but supporting each other no matter what the ability.”

College’s 10 Heads of Houses in 2020 are experiencing a year unlike any other. Elevated to roles of responsibility and leadership, and anticipating the year of their lives, 2020 is proving unforgettable for all the wrong reasons. Just a few short weeks of “normality” preceded the advent of Covid-19 and the onset of an educational disruption never before experienced in their young lives. And while all boys have had to summon extra strength to cope, the Heads of Houses have felt the need to add a more pastoral note to their leadership mix. And they’ve stepped up amazingly well. “It has been a disrupted year so far which has opened doors for all sorts of opportunities,” says Josh Wynne of Harper House in a reaction typical of all the Heads of Houses. “Keeping the House spirit and involvement high during and after the Covid lockdown was definitely my biggest challenge,” says Head of Corfe House, Ben Young. “I did this by making sure that our senior group was leading

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spend more time there than at home,” says Kynan. “It’s meant I’ve created lifelong friendships. The Year 9 orientation day with just Year 9s and Year 13s is very special because it means the Year 9s have a mentor and role model to help them transition into College smoothly.” And while the Heads of Houses all love the rivalry of interhouse sports events, the thing they say they will miss when they leave in December is “just the everyday heading back to the Common Room.” “Just chatting with the boys about anything and everything,” says Kynan. “Being in the House system means you become very close with the others, creating this brotherhood between you and your peers.” Charlie says his memories of the House system will be “of all those lunch times spent with the boys in the House, whether we are chatting amongst ourselves or playing basketball with the older boys, it was always just nice to be able to chill with each other in between our busy workloads.”

George Simpson, Head of Richards House, feels grateful he’s had the chance to develop the life skills of communication, leadership, the building of relationships, as well as handling the responsibilities of being Head of House. “This has been the most challenging, yet rewarding part of the role. And I’ve loved welcoming new students. I’ve been able to help Year 9s in a way that I would have liked when I was their age.” Josh Johnston, Head of Jacobs House agrees that the way he saw senior students when a junior himself, influenced the manner in which he operated this year. “They were role models and I reflected on what made those year groups good, and tried to bring some of that this year.” Kynan Salt says his biggest highlight as Head of House is being able to watch the whole House engage as a single entity. “To see boys encourage each other and show the passion that is created around this House spirit, while various House events are going on, that’s been a highlight for me.”

Kynan says the role of Head of House is heavily supported by the boys around you – “especially in your year group.” “I am grateful to have such a strong group of boys supporting me this year.” Charlie says he’s learnt to trust in the people surrounding him. “They are much more keen to help than I originally thought. My biggest surprise has been the support I’ve had to aid me in becoming a better leader within the school, from both teachers and fellow students.” All the Heads of Houses said their time management and organisational skills have been enhanced by the added responsibility. Having to juggle different activities of both a personal and community nature takes skill. But all agree the benefits in personal growth are huge, and not just for the rest of the year, but also for the future. The House system itself gets the thumbs up from its 2020 leaders. “It’s a second home and a second family for many boys, as they

“ Being in the House systemmeans you become very close with the others, creating this brotherhood between you and your peers. ” Kynan Salt

L-R: Jarrad Hill (F), George Simpson (R), Ben Young (Cf), William Koko (Ro), Kynan Salt (J), Josh Johnston (Ja), Josh Wynne (H), Charlie Chubb (So), Guy Chaffey (S), Fletcher Anderson (C)

College Issue 39 2020


BOARDING Could you do it?

be independent, easy to get along with and someone who is always keen to have a go at something outside of their comfort zone.” Sam says there’s no doubt that moving straight into boarding life isn’t easy. “But staff, tutors, and students alike all do their part to ensure a seamless transition. House activities at the beginning of the year are pivotal for this, forging a strong and inclusive individual House culture, as well as continuing the positive interaction between the three boarding Houses.” Sam says almost instantly on arrival the new cohort of young boarders is fully integrated in to the boarding atmosphere.

“Older lads are always keen to include them in anything going on and are happy to answer any queries they may have. We keep the boys busy, whether it’s taking part in the boarding programme or an impromptu game of table tennis or pool. This is usually the most effective way to integrate them into boarding life.” The biggest challenge the youngsters face is adapting to living with so many new people, and being forced to develop relationships with some that in other cases they might not gravitate towards. And suddenly, they’re without the steady hand of Mum and Dad!

Boarding is what Christ’s College was once renowned for; and it’s still a very important part of school life for many young men. During the five years they live in one of the three College boarding Houses – School, Richards and Flower’s – boys change from children to young men. And it’s not just physically, says Head of Boarding Sam Averill. “In many cases a boarder will leave in Year 13 completely different from the nervy Year 9 who walked in five years earlier. Not only will they have made mates for life, but they will have developed character skills that will prove necessary at university and years after. They will

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“ We keep the boys busy, whether it’s taking part in the boarding programme, or an impromptu game of table tennis or pool. ” SamAverill But luckily each boarding House is blessed with the stewardship of a matron, who is always on hand to alleviate any sickness or injury. “Older boys within the House also tend to make themselves available for a chat with a young boy who needs it, and so does the staff member on duty at the time.” Boarding life he says, is completely different from anything the boys would have experienced before. Living with 60 other boys makes sure of that! “You’ll be forced to develop relationships and resolve conflicts with all different types of people. This becomes paramount to building character and becoming the person you wish to be when your time at College is up. Boarding relationships are not restricted by age or similar interests, but evolve from the experience shared from the wide range of activities within your own boarding Houses.” Sam says a boy leaves College as a Year 13 having made mates for life. He’s almost in that category now himself. Year 12 Sam Pinckney from School House is an experienced boarder, having begun living away from home when he was just 10.

“I was very excited when I started boarding as it was a new experience for me but as the first couple of days went by, I got really homesick,” he recalls. But that background made it a lot easier for him to fit in at College as a secondary student. “And knowing people that were in my year before I arrived at College was quite helpful.” Thinking back, he says the most difficult thing to adjust to would have been the bedtime routine and the new school day times. “I love boarding but during Covid-19 it has been hard with the limit of places we can go and not being able to go and see other friends from other schools. The best part of boarding for me is the friendships you create and the relationships with the boarding staff.” Year 13 Tongan-born Nale Fifta from Flower’s House, agrees. Coming from Waitaki Boys’ High School in Oamaru as a Year 11, the College boarding experience was a shock at first. “I was nervous. There were a lot of white faces and I felt I stood out. But once I started talking

to the boys and Housemaster and teachers and got used to the systems, it started to feel fine. I guess it took about six months to really feel comfortable.” Now, when he sees a Year 9 looking a bit lost, he can easily empathise. “Getting along with the young guys, mentoring and talking to them, is something I really enjoy.” At 6ft 4ins and a member of the Senior A basketball team, Nale remembers it took a while to get used to the system and the routines. “But you do get through it. I remember how homesick I was in the first few weeks of boarding. But the boarding experience has been so good for me. It’s helped me establish a routine, and these three years have helped me a lot with my social skills – meeting people, making friends. I was really shy at first, but now I feel comfortable.” He says boarders need to arrive with the right mindset. “You know it’s all going to be different from what you’re used to, but if you’re flexible and open you’ll get through it. And it’s important to be yourself.”

Photo on left (L-R): Sam Pinckney, Sam Averill and Nale Fifita

College Issue 39 2020


BOARDING Boarders cope in lockdown

Music was a godsend for Year 13 School House student Daniel Qi when Covid-19’s lockdown occurred. A talented pianist, (in fact ‘The Piano Man’ himself from the House Music festival), Daniel had done a two-week individual isolation on returning to Christchurch from China at the beginning of the year. He’d then spent just seven weeks in the boarding House before the national lockdown was imposed. Fortunately, his mother was still in Christchurch, so he was able to lockdown in a home setting, playing the piano, reading, playing chess on line, and getting some outdoors exercise when he could. “I did some running and jogging, which was new for me. It was okay, but a bit tough at the start. By the end of lockdown, I was running 4kms. “School House friends and Housemaster Arthur Wood met up with us twice or three times a week online. But there’s a huge difference between being online and things like Facetime, and actually meeting in person. In a way, the lockdown was a precious opportunity to realise how lucky we usually are. Sometimes people take it for granted.” The first day back in the House when lockdown was lifted and school resumed, was a little strange, he says.

Daniel says it was a great time to build self-regulation and resilience. “I already have high expectations of myself, but it helped me to make sure I was motivated. Or it could make you stressed. I think my lockdown experience was more like that of a Kiwi student.” Daniel says it also made him aware of his own goals – where he wants to go, who he wants to be. “The thing is, who you are is unique. You are enough! You’re not a loser. All we can do is improve, trust, make a commitment, and put faith in each other to work together as a team.”

“It took a couple of days to readjust. You sort of wondered how your mates would be after all that time, but we kind of fell back into the usual jokes and chat and eventually you felt it was great to be back.” One of the most difficult aspects of lockdown was studying online. “That was very different and it certainly affected my studies. For some subjects it might be a more efficient means of operating, but not so much for others. I have a very engaging class and we talk a lot each period – during lockdown I heard only from the teacher.”

Daniel Qi (centre) with School House friends Charlie Hansen (left) and Alfie Baker (right)

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IMMERSE & INSPIRE Immerse & Inspire provides a taste of boarding life

There are some real advantages to living on site – the sports fields and Dining Hall are a short walk away and you don’t need to factor in travel time to school in the morning!

All Year 10 students learn first- hand what life is like as a boarder when they move into Jacobs House for their residential weeks on the Immerse & Inspire programme. It’s the component that is a real surprise to many – they’re out of their comfort zone, in a dorm with seven others, and for some, it’s their first time away from home. Immerse & Inspire tutor, primary school teacher from Dublin Jimmy Healy says the other big factor is that they are not in a dorm with anyone from their own House.

“We mix them up intentionally, so they make a whole new group of friends. There’s an element about that which means they have to be mature enough to handle things. It’s a big learning experience for life after College, and it’s a big lesson in tolerating others. They get a clear appreciation of what the boarders go through.” With the Immerse & Inspire programme now embedded in the Year 10 calendar, many of the current students are excited to be

following in the footsteps of their older brothers and cousins. “In a way, it’s like a rite of passage,” says Jimmy. “And while they’re living in, they get a chance to do some service for the community – a facet that’s linked to the Duke of Edinburgh bronze award which they’re all enrolled in.” This year’s groups have worked in College’s plant nursery and planted out trees in the red

College Issue 39 2020


zone with David Newton and the Environment Committee.” It’s through activities like that, and going as a group to the Crazy Golf driving range that the residential groups bond. “It gives them another dynamic in that they can find a new interest with boys they normally wouldn’t be involved with.” The residential stint over, Immerse & Inspire then takes them on a week-long Adventurous Journey at Boyle River lodge which allows them to complete part of the bronze award for Duke of Edinburgh. “They stay in tents of two or three boys, have to set up camp themselves, cook for themselves outside, and learn the skills of tramping and camping. It really makes a small group work together as a team.” Then for the second part they plan a journey including a river crossing, using map navigation, deciding which routes to take, how high to climb and how long to take. Under remote observation by tutors, they invariably safely succeed in all aspects, but not without a lot of thought, effort and cooperation.

“ It gives them another dynamic in that they can find a new interest with boys they normally wouldn’t be involved with. ” Jimmy Healy

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Jimmy says along the way they gain “a massive sense of enjoying the environment.” “They begin to appreciate how lucky they are to be out in this country, and of sustainability – leaving no trace where they have been. It all combines in a great sense of achievement and awareness.” He estimates about a quarter of the boys would have been proficient with cooking and map navigation beforehand and about a quarter would have done some similar style outdoor activities with their families, “but not taking the lead role.” He says leaving their cell phones behind for four days is another challenge for the boys. “There’s no coverage – so at night they get out a pack of cards or look for possums!” When it’s time to return, the boys are in great form, he says. “Sure, they’re tired and sore, but they’re impressed by what they’ve achieved. It’s a big step up from any camp they’ve done before. “And for a lot of them they’re out of their comfort zone – but not too far – so it means they’re ready for being out of their comfort zone in the future.” If boys show exceptional character on the Adventurous Journey they’re given a special award certificate. “What we find is a lot who shine in the academic setting also shine in the outdoors and take the lead. And we also discover that even in such a short period the boys see the opportunities College has to offer and how privileged they are.” Jimmy himself has been inspired by the experience. “I love it. Even the freezing nights. You can see the Milky Way so clearly. It’s a big sky out there and very quiet.”

College Issue 39 2020


COMMUNITY & SERVICE Shave for a cure – buzz cuts all round

The Assembly Hall became a barber shop on Thursday 17 September, cascades of blonde, brunette, red and black shorn from 70 willing boys – and raising more than $61,000 in the process.

Shave for a Cure was a fundraiser for Leukaemia & Blood Cancer New Zealand and has been supported by College boys for several years. Head of Service Joshua Mortensen said the backing this time was unprecedented and indicated the huge interest the school had for the cause. Seventeen ARA Institute of Canterbury apprentice barbers did the job, giving buzz cuts all round as the boys queued to lose their locks. Jen and Melike, two Level 4 barbers on the course, said it was a privilege to shear the boys’ heads. “It’s a fantastic cause, and a great effort.” Jen vowed it was best to “go round the sides first” to execute a buzz cut; Melike found it better to go “once right over from the front to the back.” As the boys queued to be shorn in front of their mates, no one appeared to be having second thoughts. “Everyone’s done an amazing job getting sponsorship, and the guys are pretty committed,” said Angad Vraich as his own hair fell to the floor. Facial features change with the absence of hair; some boys liked the sensation of having a shaved head, others didn’t.

They said:

“I like the way it feels, but I don’t like the way it looks.” Assistant Principal Neil Porter grinned as his hair went west, his wife Debra videoing the event. “He normally has it short, and it was driving him nuts; he’d never had it so long,” she said. Neil was always going to be a starter. “As someone who lives with a form of leukaemia, I thought I

“It’s smooth and clean.”

“It feels really nice.”

“It’s cold.”

“It looks so weird.”

“My shadow has completely changed.” “I found a couple of scars I didn’t know I had.” “I can feel the wind and the sun on my head.”

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“ Everyone’s done an amazing job getting sponsorship,and the guys are pretty committed. ” Angad Vraich “This is a cause dear to my heart. I had a family member who had blood cancer. Friends, neighbours, work colleagues, and nice family members have all given their support.” would join in and take part and do my bit. It actually feels so much better than having my hair ‘long!’ It feels so good to see so many of the boys doing something positive for other people.” Head Prefect Dominic Edmond shed his curly locks for the cause, as did Year 10, 15-year-old Condell’s House student Elliott Grey, whose efforts raised the most – more than $4000 of the College total.

College Issue 39 2020


COMMUNITY & SERVICE Harper House supports its charity

In spite of all the disruptions of the year, Harper House has managed two activities to advance its charity, the Child Cancer Foundation. Each House works and supports a charity in accordance with the tenets of the College Graduate, Round Square and College virtues, and Harper started off in fine style in Term 1 taking part in the street corner bucket collections for the annual appeal. Ballantynes corner on Colombo Street and Cashel Mall proved a good location. And Condell’s and Harper also collected outside the new Riverside Market, the combined totals reaching $800 a day. Then on 9 September the annual much anticipated Wig Wednesday was held, with each boy getting sponsorship individually, and wearing a colourful wig at school for the day. “The boys did a great job on the day wearing their wigs, with a number of the Year 12 students also putting on a sausage sizzle to raise some extra coin,” says Harper Housemaster Matt Cortesi. “Year 13, Connor Graham kept up his tradition of being the highest individual collector with $294, while the whole House, through

Andrew Gray, Business Development Manager for the CCF came and spoke to the Harper House boys in August just prior to Wig Wednesday. He said the organisation currently supports more than 300 families across New Zealand with around three children a week being diagnosed with some form of cancer. CCF receives no government funding, but relies entirely on donations, sponsorship and fundraising.

“I want to thank you for what you guys do. It’s because of people like you that we are able to go out and support families in need.” Largely invisible, CCF worked behind the scenes, one on one, while families were going through one of the most difficult journeys of their lives, he said. “CCF comes on board at the time of diagnosis, and assigns a family

“ The boys did a great job on the day wearing their wigs, with a number of the Year 12s also putting on a sausage sizzle to raise some extra coin. ” Matt Cortesi

online and cash donations, surpassed last year’s total by

collecting $3414.74. It was a great effort and much appreciated by the Child Cancer Foundation.”

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support coordinator who tailors a plan for the child and that family. They discuss what the diagnosis means, and changes they might see.” The three pillars of the CCF were to make sure every child gets to every treatment on time and is well looked after whilst there; to ensure they have a comfortable home environment for their plan; and to make sure families and children are supported post-treatment. CCF also supports camps for siblings, helps families get away for holidays, and helps meet the costs of memorial services and funeral costs. Andrew gave examples of children and families who had been helped by CCF. “We generally support children up to the age of 12 and then Canteen takes over for the teenage years.” Andrew said he hoped the boys would realise when they leave school that “the more you do to give back, the more comfortable you feel about what you are doing every day. “A lot goes on in life. At school, you can create a brotherhood. Some of my fondest memories in fact, are of creating that brotherhood, particularly by doing something together for a good cause –that’s what builds lasting memories.”

College Issue 39 2020


COMMUNITY & SERVICE A qualification for the asking

A College education provides amazing opportunities for every boy, but one which is literally there for the asking is the Duke of Edinburgh’s Hillary Award.

This internationally-recognised qualification expands every boy’s horizons while singling him out for closer attention on his CV. “It is instantly recognised as the highest non-academic qualification worldwide and I know of situations where short listing for job interviews are based on whether or not the young person has the award,” says Graeme Christey Master in Charge of the programme at College. “Quite simply, it gives you an edge. Employers know that a boy who

has any level of the award, but in particular, if completing all three bronze, silver and gold awards, has made a two-year commitment to being physically active, showing an ability to learn and commit to a skill. It tells them that you are adventurous and able to work in a team environment. It is formal recognition that you have the soft skills that most businesses prefer in their employees these days.” College boys are advantaged from the outset of their educational journey, every Year 10 boy being

funded and registered for their bronze award before they undertake the Immerse & Inspire programme, and thereby fulfilling the Adventurous Journey component. “We’re passionate about the Duke of Edinburgh award and that’s why we fund it, including their bronze Adventurous Journey,” says Graeme. “We invest in the students, and then it’s over to them to continue on. Our aim is to see as many as possible of their names on the

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College students completing their Gold Duke of Edinburgh ‘ s Hillary Award, from left (L-R): Dominic Edmond, John An, Ben Davis, Connor Graham, Jonathan Huo, Jamie Barr

Duke of Edinburgh honours board in the assembly hall foyer. It’s entirely possible for all the boys to achieve this in their time at College, but it does call for them to push themselves hard.” While the existing board is for students who’ve completed the award while at school, approval in principle has been given for another board to be installed to record the names of those who complete their gold award after leaving school. Students have until age 24 to complete this award – it does not need to be completed at secondary school. “We want to encourage boys to enrol in their gold award before they leave College, and we will then recognise them, if they wish, on the honours board when they finish it.” The critical factor in all the effort for the Duke of Edinburgh award

“We invest in the students, and then it's time for them to continue on... it's entirely possible for all the boys to achieve this in their time at College, but it does call for them to push themselves hard. ” Graeme Christey

is to ensure they keep their log of achievement up to date. “They need to continue keying in their entries online, and my biggest frustration is that some don’t do so, and miss out on the recognition they’re due.” The Duke of Edinburgh‘s Hillary Award is a youth awards programme, founded in the United Kingdom in 1956 by Prince Phillip, Duke of Edinburgh, and now operating in 144 nations. It is divided into three levels, bronze, silver and gold, each progressively

more challenging. Within each level there are four sections – voluntary service, skills, physical recreation, and adventurous journey – with a residential project added at gold level. Connor Graham credits the Duke of Edinburgh award with keeping him motivated. The Year 13 Harper House student will complete his gold award this year and says while it has required “a bit of determination,” attaining the award is a significant milestone.

College Issue 39 2020


“A lot of it was stuff I was doing anyway. It just required registering and logging it so it could be recorded. “The Duke of Edinburgh certainly gave me the motivation last year to go to Malaysia, for example, and it got me doing the residential component, and out doing service. It also motivated me to improve my skills in polo and shooting.” Connor believes the award is a good thing to have achieved for his future career, regardless of which direction he takes. “I imagine that coming up there will be many places to use it.”

For now, anticipating his name on the Duke of Edinburgh Honours Board in the Assembly Hall foyer is enough. Connor’s father, Old Boy Chris Graham already has his name there, having gained his Duke of Edinburgh award while at College in the 1980s. Christ’s College is one of few schools which enable every student to start on the award, and Graeme says the components closely reflect what the school expects of its College graduate. “The boys need to learn to make time to develop skills outside the classroom. The service component

embodies what we’re about at College – giving voluntary service to the school and community at large. Learning to develop the habits to keep physically active and adventurous is another expectation of our boys.” He’s happy to help any boy at any time. “Just get in touch. This is a qualification you won’t regret!”

John set on completing Gold award Harper House Year 13 student John An plans to complete his Gold award after he leaves school – and he may be first on a proposed new Honours Board acknowledging those who finish the qualification once they have left College.

John believes the seven years he has to complete the gold award will be more than adequate, even given the demanding schedule he expects to be working in. He has enjoyed every aspect of attaining the bronze and silver awards, challenging himself in the provision of a service component which saw him tutoring and mentoring primary and secondary students for free, principally in the Sciences and Mathematics.

The second Honours Board will be installed so that students who complete the award by age 24, can also be recognised. “I would be honoured to be the first on it,” says John, 17, who has been resolute about completing the Duke of Edinburgh since he

started his Bronze award in Year 10. With his sights set on engineering, and

university study in Australia beckoning, he sees the award as an international qualification which will speak volumes about him and his abilities. “My future goal is wider than just completing it and staying local. I want to go out in to the bigger world and experience life doing practical things with people all around the world. The Duke of Edinburgh award, with its different components, speaks volumes about those who have it, and tells prospective employers that the candidate is of a certain calibre and capability.”

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Give a boy a global experience and he’ll see life differently

With international students an important part of our College community, our boys learn first-hand about other cultures and ethnicities. The school provides many opportunities for boys to study on exchange programmes to Europe, the USA and the UK. Boys also represent Christ’s College at international Round Square conferences; sports teams and choirs travel abroad to compete and perform. Christ’s College is part of an international world – and our boys are encouraged to experience it.

College Issue 39 2020 Each boy at his best.



Nowadays perhaps more than ever, it is important to be outward looking and engaged with the world – and Round Square International Week is a fun way to celebrate diversity in our community and learn about different peoples and cultures.

gamely agreed to judge, with their deliberations based on appearance, creativity and how they thought it might taste – and, after careful consideration, declared Harper House the winner, with Condell’s House and Somes House runners-up. For a wider perspective on internationalism, Matthew Nichols, Civic and International Relations Manager at the Christchurch City Council spoke at assembly on Thursday about his career as a diplomat working in Paris and as an advisor to the Ministry of Defence, visiting Afghanistan and India. He outlined the exciting jobs available in the intelligence community and in large international companies and urged the boys to try to learn another language which would provide understanding and cultural perspective.

At College, Round Square International Week began in Chapel with a Monday morning, International Languages Chapel Service featuring languages learned and languages spoken at College and a thought-provoking sermon. In his address, Year 13 student and Head of International & Round Square Angad Vraich asked the boys to look at themselves, their backgrounds, and how that has shaped their lives and attitudes, and then discussed the impact of social exclusion, racism and microaggressions. He suggested ways to change, engage with, understand and accept others. “Try to gain an understanding of what makes you who you are and, in doing so, make others feel welcome for who they are. Challenge yourself to be more open and accepting.” “Try to gain an understanding of what makes you who you are and, in doing so, make others feel welcome for who

At Monday lunchtime an enthusiastic group of boys

gathered in the gym to have a go at Tchoukball – an indoor team sport devised by Swiss physician and physical educator Dr Hermann Brandt. With elements of handball, volleyball and squash, the fast- paced game of teamwork and skill soon had the boys running all over the court, having a whole lot of fun. Good food is guaranteed to bring people together and the boys’ culinary flair was put to the test at lunchtime on Tuesday at the House sushi making competition. Using the finest fresh ingredients and traditional seasonings, plus some more adventurous and unconventional sweet options, teams from each House came up with their signature sushi. Teacher Steve Everingham and Year 13 students Jamie Yee and Ben Davis

they are . ” Angad Vraich

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He said keeping an eye on the BBC world website, and on terrorism and global trade were important to maintain a global view of what’s happening in the wider world. Lunchtime saw food trucks in Upham Quad descended on by hungry hordes, while teams tested their general knowledge and collective intelligence in the Chapman Room in a House quiz. It certainly helped if you’d studied geography, history and kept up with current affairs. The Flower’s House team won, with Rolleston taking second place honours and Julius coming in third.

College Issue 39 2020


INTERNATIONALISM Holiday programme suits international students

So successful was the first ever live-in school holiday programme for international students, that they’ve held it again! The end of Term 2 would usually spell a trip home for most of the school’s overseas students. This time Covid-19 intervened, and the majority of them were forced to stay in Christchurch. “They’d just had 10 weeks in lockdown with their guardians, and then it was holiday time. Because they couldn’t return to their home countries, we decided to keep them in-house for the Term 2 holiday break and offer a live-in school holiday programme which included loads of interesting activities, plus two ski and snow boarding days to Porter Heights, a trip to Hanmer Springs and a global competency programme,” says College’s International Student Manager Deanne Gath, who was the programme supervisor. “It was an active, busy range of activities but there were pockets of free time.” Jacobs House was the holiday home base for the 18 Year 9–13 students who might not have known one another very well at the start, but whose friendships grew during their time together. To make matters more interesting, international boarders from St Margaret’s College and St Andrew’s College joined in at times.

of young people ever and we all learned a lot, whether it was how to cook wontons, how to ski, or undertaking the global competency certification course,” says Deanne. This course, developed by AFS Intercultural Programmes, looks at stereotypes, generalisations, racism, identity, and other allied topics, and its basic tenets align closely with those of Round Square International and College’s own virtues and character strengths.

“ It was better being in Jacobs than in a homestay, we had our own room, and it was more relaxed for us, I think . ” Justin Yin

It’s designed to develop the knowledge, skills and

understanding necessary to create a more just and peaceful world. The students’ enthusiastic and wholehearted participation meant conversations and discussions were rich and open, everybody benefiting from the information gained and the insights achieved. “This is a valuable certification that we can use across the wider school, too,” says Deanne. Year 12 student Justin Yin from Richards House is one student who completely endorses the holiday programme. “I definitely liked it. It was better being in Jacobs House than in a homestay, we had our own room, and it was more relaxed for us, I think. We’re more familiar in that House environment and it worked well.” Justin says the highlight was just relaxing and being on holiday. “I wanted to chill, you get pretty tired after a term; but I did enjoy a

lot of the activities – especially the outdoor stuff. The trip to Hanmer Springs was great, and so was the ice skating.” Justin said he also really enjoyed making dumplings and wontons for dinner. “There are more than 20 ways of making a dumpling and all of us had good fun doing that together.” He says that kind of activity was a good means of everyone getting to know one another better. “There are a lot of similarities in the East Asian cultures – the way schools are set up, and classes and subjects organised, and the stuff the kids talk about are all different from what happens here. “We Chinese are more introverted, whereas here people are more extroverted and give their opinions more freely. I’ve got the hang of things here after all this time here,

“It was the best blended cohort

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but it’s a different environment entirely for the Chinese boys.” There were lots of people involved in making the international school holiday programme a success, not least those in the Dining Hall who went above and beyond preparing an international menu for the boys – the greatest majority being from Asia – and providing them with cooking classes as well. Those on the programme went to Velocity Karts, and ten-pin bowling. They swam at Hanmer Springs and explored at Castle Hill. They learned to make dumplings and they participated in sports workshop sessions run by Old Boys Shun Miyake and Kyle Houston. They took part in Maori culture workshops; they made their own lunch of pizzas with Peata in the Dining Hall kitchen. There was disk golf and there were Ramen boats for dinner. In fact, so popular was the programme that it was repeated during the holidays at the end of Term 3. Again, living in Jacobs House, the students had an action-packed fortnight before heading off to Stewart Island!

College Issue 39 2020


EXCHANGE A German exchange to treasure

Robbie McKeown, Toby Oliver, Ben Davis, John Wong and Charlie Chubb wrapped up their Year 12 College experience by going on a 7-week exchange trip to Germany – possibly the last by New Zealand students for some time.

It set the boys up for a much more confident final year of German studies, their listening and understanding of the language enhanced by their immersion in their host families and schools in North West Germany. For Robbie it was in Krefeld, near Dusseldorf; for Toby it was Herscheid, and for Ben it was Neuss. All of them began school the day after arrival. “It was a big shock to see the size of the school,” says Toby. “Huge, multiple seven-storey buildings with at least a couple of thousand students, from primary age to senior high school.” Robbie said the schools in Germany still use black boards, overhead projectors and pencil and paper. “They’re very different to what we’re used to. They don’t have wifi and they cram about 30 people in a class half the size of ours. But all this makes it more interesting. It was so exciting to become a part of this new culture. It was a challenge that we all took on and enjoyed.” Cell phone use at school was banned. People found using a phone would have it confiscated immediately. “The thing that most impressed me was that because there was no

cellphone use, at lunchtimes the students would play cards or sit and talk, and I thought it was nice,” said Ben. There were no school uniforms, and students were encouraged to leave the grounds and buy lunch locally, said Robbie. “The food in Germany is so cheap – 4 Euros for a large pizza. Everyone would go by train or bike to and from school. It was the main form of transport as you cannot get your licence until you’re 18.” Ben found himself facing different segments of Chemistry and

Mathematics “things I’d never done” and found it intriguing that the order we study components of both subjects in New Zealand are not followed in Germany. Mid-way through their exchange the boys celebrated Christmas, with visits to magical Christmas markets, and a five day visit by all the exchange students to Berlin. Toby said that city had a very different tone to the rest of Germany. “It has a contemporary, new feel, modern and exciting and we had the most awesome tour guide who

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