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Education: Takapuna Grammar School

Takapuna Grammar: Get2Go Challenge

Get2Go Challenge

Following the senior students who successfully qualified for the Hillary Challenge Grand Final, the junior students were challenged to continue the winning form in the Get2Go Challenge qualifier. This sport is definitely growing at the school, with four teams entering this year, not just the usual one; three mixed premier teams and one all girls’ team of Year 10 students.

The North Harbour/Waitakere event was held in early August, run by the Outdoor Pursuits Centre of NZ around Auckland. Takapuna Grammar School have won the past four years so along with wanting to make it five in a row, this year’s teams were also trying to match last year’s team of winning all four sections at the qualifier. 

The qualifier included climbing at Clip n Climb, mountain biking at Arch Hill, kayaking on Lake Pupuke and an orienteering/rogaine around Western Springs. With the closest finish in many years, TGS 1 won by just 3 points from close rivals, Westlake Boys’ and Girls’. This team was Saskia Vosper, Julia O'Brien, Alex Dooley, Anna Jacobs, Jono Nicholas, Adam McPheat, Cory Pelham and Oscar Koller. The other TGS teams finished 3rd, 5th and 7th - a fantastic effort for all four teams. For the team that now heads to the Grand Final on Great Barrier Island in December, the training starts again in earnest as they will have five days on the Island in full Adventure Racing mode aiming to win the National title. 

Dance teacher excels in her own competition

Dance teacher, Miss Emily Woodfield has come to Takapuna Grammar School from Singapore. She attended the Singapore American School as a student from Year 8 -13 before completing her teacher training, and doing a six month stint teaching dance at her alma mater, before arriving at TGS this year.

Being a dancer is as important to her, as teaching dance to her students. As a ‘student’ of salsa dance since she was in Year 10, Emily has continued to compete; her most recent competition being the New Zealand Salsa Solo Championships. 

Emily competed in three divisions as a representative of the Latinissimo NZ Studio, in the Adult Salsa Shines Teams (a team of 6 ladies), the Adult Open Latin Duets (a combination of any Latin styles) and Adult Salsa Solo. 

Her team event and the Duet both placed second. They were presented with a trophy for the team event and she has a silver medal for the duet. Her dance students are able to appreciate the effort and dedication it takes to perform at a national competition and know that they are in the hands of an expert when they come into the dance studio. 

The cash rate and the state of the economy

Each year the Reserve Bank of New Zealand runs a Monetary Policy Challenge for senior students. Teams must make a decision about the official cash rate and do a ten minute presentation on the state of the economy and inflation. They are then questioned by a panel of four Reserve Bank economists.

The regional competition in Auckland has more than 25 teams entered. TGS has entered teams in the past who have made it to the regional round but this is the first time they have reached the national finals.

Each team has a “Governor” and three other members. This year’s TGS team consists of four students in the International Baccalaureate Diploma programme - David Sorrenson, Ercan Hoskin, Lucy Oh and Elaine Zhang, who were narrowly beaten by the team from Glenfield College. However, they picked up the runner-up “wild card” entry and go to Wellington for the all-expenses-paid national final, on August 20. 

This paid off handsomely as TGS came second, beating Glenfield in the final, but having to bow to the superior team from Taupo-nui-a-tia College, the national winners. 

by Channel Magazine