Muswellbrook HS Newsletter

Term 3 No: 1

Deputies Report

Deputies Report

Welcome back to Term 3 2019.  With Mrs Fairweather relieving as Principal and Mr Copland off on leave, the Deputy Principals for the remainder of the year will be Ms N Thompson and Mr D O’Hara.

Ms N Thompson is from Swansea High School and will be in charge of Years 8, 10 & 12, whilst Mr D O’Hara will be in charge of Years 7, 9 & 11

We are looking forward to developing a positive relationship with our students and families, to celebrate their successes and to support the students with their academic and personal growth. We encourage you to contact the school as we believe it is important for us to work together to support the students. Our office staff will be able to direct you to the relevant staff member.

We are currently in the middle of subject selections for 2020. Our current Year 10 students have already completed an Information Day with Head Teachers. For the first time, they were required to attend formal interviews with staff and also attend an information evening. All selections were to be completed online by Wednesday 7th August. Any outstanding forms will now be followed up by the Deputy.

Our current Yr 8 students completed their Information Day with Head Teachers on the 7th August and will attend an Information Evening at 5.00pm on the 13th August in the MPC, where they will also receive their unique access code to complete their selections online. Current Yr 9 students will receive subject selection booklets and their selection codes during Year Assemblies on the same day.

It is important for you discuss these choices with your student. Please encourage them to pick subjects that they have a genuine interest in and not just because their friends are doing it. It is very difficult to accommodate class changes next year as the majority of classes will be full and the subject lines will be set.

Looking forward to a productive Semester 2.

Mr O’Hara & Ms Thompson

Deputy Principals

Don't forget to like us on Facebook

Don't forget to like us on Facebook

Bi annual Visit from our Japanese Sister School

Sayama Seiryo Senior High School July 24th-August 3rd, 2019

 On Wednesday 24th July, 23 Year 10, 11 and 12 students and two teachers from our sister school in Saitama Japan arrived in Muswellbrook for a 10 day stay. The Japanese students were all hosted by local families and those students who are going to Japan in 2020 were able to host the student they will stay with in Japan. Some host families were hosting for the second time and they all welcomed the students into their homes and introduced the students to Aussie life.

At school the students participated in a range of activities including an AFL training workshop with Dan Brash and keen AFL MHS students, Science, History and English lessons, an art lesson with our resident artist Leanne Ward where the students painted boomerangs, Japanese lessons: where our Year 11 and 12 students had their speaking skills tested and an afternoon of sport with Year 7. Excursions included a visit by 4WD bus to Mangoola mine, Hunter Valley Zoo and Aqua Golf, horse riding at RDA, a visit to Muswellbrook Public Primary school and a bowling and laser tag afternoon.

On the last day of their stay here, the Japanese students put together a display of Japanese traditional toys, card games and origami as well as showcasing their calligraphy skills by writing MHS student’s names in Japanese. All Year 7 classes as well as elective Year 8, 9 and 10 Japanese classes rotated the activities and a fun time was had by all students involved. On the last night a BBQ was held at the Agricultural farm to thank all the host families and then the students and teachers left Muswellbrook early Saturday morning to return to Sydney and fly back to Japan.

Comment from a host family

"We happily agreed to host a Japanese student but became a little nervous about the language barrier as their arrival got closer.  We started off slowly relying on Google Translate but Muswellbrook High School matched us perfectly with our student, Yuya, and he blended into our family, happily attended events in our everyday life, like soccer training and communication became easier every day. There is no expectation to take the students sightseeing as it is a short visit but the students are very appreciative if you can. It was our first time hosting and it was such a learning experience for us with cultural differences but we are looking forward to hosting more students in the future.  There were a few tears saying goodbye but it was a great experience and highly recommended. “ Lye family


Comments from MHS host students

“Having a Japanese student stay with my family was such an amazing experience. Over the 10 days, my student and I grew closer and our language and social skills improved. “(Jorja Boyd, Year 10)

“Hosting Haruka was an excellent experience! It was very fun and informative and we learnt a lot about each other. I would recommend it to anyone considering hosting”. (Amelia Bellotti, Year 10)

“It was a wonderful experience taking Miyu into our home. We were able to learn more about Japanese culture and she learnt about ours- including how to eat Vegemite on a crumpet with avocado! Everyone missed her, we had such a lovely time together. I am looking forward to staying with her in Japan in January.” (Jenna Wolfgang, Year10)

“Hosting a Japanese student was an incredible experience and I learnt about the Japanese language from an inside perspective. While hosting I also became friends with other billets as well and I will always remember them.” (Kodie Parker, Year 10)

“Hosting a Japanese student was great. Being an only child, Naoki loved having host siblings and he also went to the skate park two afternoons after school. It was good having another teenager around.” (Kurt Farrell Year 7)          

Stage 6

Stage 6 (Yrs 11 & 12)

Year 12

Trials have been a success again this year, being held offsite for the last fortnight at the Muswellbrook Library and Tertiary Education Centre. 

Students were able to sit their examinations in a professional space, without distractions, simulating their upcoming HSC.

Year 12 students return to school as normal, Monday of Week 3, for their final term. Year 12 will receive a planner on their return to school, to plan their upcoming assessments and work load.

The upcoming HSC time table is available on NESA's website and can be accessed via the link:

Year 11

Year 11 students have commenced their final Term of Year 11. They received a school planner at the end of Term 2 with their reports, and should be utilising this to plan their upcoming assessments and work load. If your child did not receive one, they can request one from me in the Stage Head Teacher office.


Year 11 have some upcoming events and payments due to the front office. If you have payment concerns, please contact Mrs Martin. 

Crossroads instalments are due (This is a mandatory excursion for all mainstream Year 11 students)

Jersey instalments are due (It is the students choice if they would like to purchase a Year 12 Jersey).


Laura Martin

Music Teacher & Stage 6 Head Teacher

Stage 4

Welcome to the new Year 7 Advisor

Miss Helena Rosenkranc is the new Year 7 Advisor and has been excitedly getting to know the students. She is an English teacher with a Drama background, and has been putting these creative skills to work in Welfare lessons over the last few weeks. Miss Sally Bowe, as Assistant Year Advisor has helped to keep routines consistent.

Special thanks to the previous Year Advisor, Miss Rikki Moore, now teaching in Special Education, for her commitment to a successful Transition from Primary School for our Year 7 students during Semester 1.

Week 3 provided our Year 8 students with a 3 period rotation of Stage 5 subject information. Several Head Teachers were offering tantalising snippets of Faculty subjects with overviews of expectations for 100 or 200 hour subjects for Year 9 consideration. This will be followed up with a Stage 5 Subject Selection night for parents and students in Week 4. Staff were impressed with the level of interest and thought provoking questions from students across the classes, towards their learning in 2020 and beyond. 

A few reminders to support your child to a successful Term 3.

·         Attending every day…..arriving before 9am…..contacting the school if your child is sick

·         Wearing proper school uniform, black leather shoes, no hoodies, and yellow shirts packed in school bags for PE.

·         Being prepared for the day’s learning with equipment – timetable, exercise books, pens, pencils, calculator

·         Healthy sleeping routines by limiting online gaming and access to social media on school nights

·         Asking your child to discuss ‘Good News stories’ from the day…..specific learning questions….dig deeper when they shrug their shoulders and say “Nothing!” 

·         Encouraging positive conversations about their peers

·         Asking your child have they discussed / reported concerns with the appropriate teacher as soon as incidences occur, or at the earliest opportunity

·         And of course, if there is ever a significant concern, please contact the school, following these guidelines: 

–        Absence for daily illness – contact Front Office

–        Learning/ behaviour concerns in a specific class or subject – contact the Class Teacher or Faculty Head Teacher

–        Wellbeing and/or ongoing social issues –Miss Rosenkranc (7) or Ms Sturtridge (8)

–        Unresolved concerns in all areas as outlined above – Mrs Young as Stage 4 Head Teacher

–         Discussions re Suspensions – Mr Dan O’Hara (Year 7 Deputy) or Mrs Nicole Thompson (Year 8 Deputy)

Mrs Sharon Young

Stage 4 HT    

Aboriginal Education

Muswellbrook High School celebrates NAIDOC


Muswellbrook High School celebrated NAIDOC week with our Aboriginal students leading our whole school assembly, our Girls Academy Dance Group performing their cultural dance and students sharing what the theme is all about for 2019.

We held a whole school sausage sizzle lunch where students also had the opportunity to sample Kangaroo and Crocodile sausages.

We would like to thank Coles and Woolworths for their kind donation and supporting our NAIDOC BBQ. 

Thank you to the staff and students in supporting an out of uniform day and wearing Red, Black and Yellow.

 We also held our annual NAIDOC Indigenous All Star vs Non-Indigenous All Stars League Tag Game.

Year 9 and 10 Game

Indigenous All Stars defeated Non-Indigenous All Stars 5 to 4

Year 7 and 8

Non-Indigenous All Stars defeated Indigenous All Stars 4 to 3

Voice. Treaty. Truth. Let's work together for a shared future - NAIDOC Week 2019

Goodooga Indigenous Games Excursion

 On Wednesday, 13 students from Years 7-10 travelled to Goodooga to compete in the Goodooga Central School Indigenous Games. Students were split up into teams, mixing with students from various age groups and schools to compete in a round robin style tournament of different traditional Indigenous Games. All students worked well in their teams, meeting new people and helping out the younger students. 

Standouts for the tournament were Tyrone Bellamy, who received the Sportsmanship award for his team and Lily Cubillo and Lequisha Yule for being members of the winning team at the end of the day. 

The students had an amazing time and a great experience.

A massive thank you to Mel Powell for organising this amazing opportunity and thank you to Miss Moore and Mr UnKauf for accompanying the students over the 3 days.

Term 3 Programs

We are pleased to welcome Jeremy Coward to our Aboriginal Education Team to work alongside Mel Powell (Aboriginal Student Support Officer) and Girls Academy. Jeremy will be working in the school on a Monday for terms 3 and 4.

Jeremy Coward a Gomeroi – Gaewegel man

He will be running a Family Wellbeing Program as well as a cultural mentor program for the rest of the year. This program will cover a range of cultural aspects including Dance, Story, Artefacts etc. Jeremy will be working on some hands on projects throughout the school including bush tucker gardens and murals etc. The focus of this program will be to increase student’s awareness of their dreams and goals, educational outcomes and increase understanding of why being strong in identity is important to our health and wellbeing.

We will also have Jacob Ellis from the OCHRE Opportunity Hub working with our younger Aboriginal boys in Cultural Mentoring.

Aboriginal Education is everyone’s business.

Melisa Powell

Aboriginal Student Support Officer

Wednesday Sport in Focus

Two Sport Options Year 8-10 Students can Select

The PDHPE Faculty encourages parents and students to discuss the sport that will be selected each term. Any changes to sport selections will NOT occur after Week 2, unless deemed appropriate by the sports coordinator.

If your child has selected a sport which is held at an external venue (those outside of MHS grounds) they must have a signed permission and medical note returned to the PE Staffroom by the first day of the new term.    

Power Walking

Students will be walking as a collective group around the area surrounding MHS.

The coordinating teachers of Power Walking plan a walking route each week, with the aim of increasing the distance walked.

There is no cost to participate in this sport, though please ensure your child has a hat and adequate water.


Students will walk to the Muswellbrook Olympic Park Tennis Courts at the beginning of sport.

Students do not need to have any previous experience at tennis. Throughout the term they will have the opportunity to learn and practice tennis skills as they play either single or double tennis against their peers.

The cost for Tennis each week is:

$1 – if supplying own racquet

$2 – if borrowing a school racquet

This is payable each week to the supervising teacher. Please ensure your child has a hat and adequate water.





Study Samurai Library Tip for August

The Importance of Quality Sleep for Students


Sleep is crucial not just for physical and mental well-being, but for the consolidation of learning, and to ensure you perform in all your endeavours in peak condition. The absolute last resort should be to How much sleep is right for you? This is tricky as everyone is different. Some lucky people need only 6 hours a night, most people need about 8 hours and some people need 10 hours!

Two ways to tell if you are getting enough sleep:

How quickly do you fall asleep at night? If you fall asleep instantly that can be a sign you are not getting enough sleep, it should take 10-15 minutes to fall asleep.

How do you feel when you wake up in the morning? If you feel tired and sluggish then that can also be a sign that you need to get to bed earlier.


  • Avoid caffeine (cola drinks, coffee, energy drinks, chocolate) after dinner or even better, no later than 4pm.

  • Organise as much as you can at night to minimise what you have to do in the morning (e.g. organise your clothes for the next day, pack your bag).

  • Try and have a half hour to an hour before you go to bed without computers, TV, phone or any electronic devices or homework or chatting to friends. If you can’t do that, at least put the devices on night mode or turn the brightness down.

  • Set up a relaxing ‘wind-down’ routine for before you go to bed. Do this same routine every night (e.g. warm shower, reading, listening to quiet music) so your brain associates these activities with bed time and sleep.

  • A drop in body temperature near bedtime triggers the sense that is time to go to sleep. So after a warm bath or hot shower, cool yourself down. It is also better at night to be cool rather than overheated.

  • Keep your room as dark and as quiet as possible at night.

  • When you lie in bed, start at your feet and mentally imagine relaxing each muscle as you slowly work your way up the body. Most people do not make it up to their head before they fall asleep!

  • In the morning open the curtains wide or go out into the sun and get lots of light to help wake your brain. Being exposed to lots of natural light during the day will also help the body produce the melatonin at the right time for a good sleep cycle.

  • A healthy breakfast will help to kick-start your body clock for the day.

Learn more about the importance of quality sleep at

Our school’s subscription details are:


Password: studymuswellbrook

Mathematics News

What's Happening

This semester we welcome Mrs Steedman and Mr Robbie to our faculty who are covering Ms Smith’s maths load as well as our still unfilled Maths teaching position.

As the new Mathematics Advanced and Mathematics Extension courses are examined for the first time in 2020. NESA has recently released a revised approved calculator lists for 2020 HSC exam and beyond. Please be aware Casio fx-100AU and Casio fx-100AU PLUS are no longer on the approved list.

As part of our HSC preparations our Year 12 Mathematics students recently linked into a DET Aurora College Mathematics study day.

Reminder that Senior Study hall occurs each Tuesday afternoon in the HUB/Library, except when parent teacher nights occur ie 3rd and 10th of September.

Following on from last year, Year 7 PBL classes (7A, 7C) recently entered the Australian Mathematics and Science Institute Choose Maths Video competition.

Mr Morris

Head Teacher Mathematics

Labor Omni Vincit ~ Work Conquers all

A Simple Maths Question

8 ÷ 2(2+2) = ?

What seems like a simple maths question is dividing the internet, and no one can agree on the correct answer.

An image of the controversial question went viral after being posted on Twitter earlier this week, sparking a fierce debate — is the answer 1 or 16?

"Find out what you like doing best and get someone to pay you for doing it.”


Work experience is an important event in many students’ lives, it is for many the first time they enter the ‘adult world’ and have the opportunity to experience what ‘working life’ will be like after school.

Each term, students from Muswellbrook High School have the opportunity to spend a week with an employer of choice, in the industry area they would like gain more exposure too. We encourage all students in Year 10 to participate in the Work Experience program and gain further insight into what their post-school options may be. The Muswellbrook community has many supportive employers who are willing to take our students and introduce them to the working world, without their assistance our students would not be able to further plan and develop skills in gaining employment within their industry of interest.

Muswellbrook High School students were invited to celebrate the Horses Birthday at Godolphin on the 1st August. We kindly thank the support by Godolphin and to Mr Taylor for taking over 30 students for a celebratory breakfast and tour of the stud. The highlight of the morning was the showing of the Melbourne Cup where students had the opportunity to hold the cup (with gloves and security guard watching).

 Mr Taylor holding the Melbourne Cup

 Mrs McDonald

Careers Advisor and VET Coordinator

Welcome to the HUB - Library News

Book Review - Mortal Engines - Phillip Reeve


Hundreds of years after a civilization was destroyed by a cataclysmic event a mysterious young woman, Hester Shaw emerges as the only one who can stop London — now a giant, predator city on wheels — from devouring everything in its path. Feral, and fiercely driven by the memory of her mother, Hester joins forces with Tom Natsworthy an outcast from London, along with Anna Fang a dangerous outlaw with a bounty on her head

The main narrator is Tom, an orphaned apprentice in London. Down in the guts of the city he meets the hero, Thaddeus Valentine, and his daughter, Katherine. An assassination attempt is made on Valentine and Tom chases the young assassin, Hester Shaw, but ends up befriending her as the two are hunted down, meeting with misadventure and new friends on the way.

Meanwhile, Katherine becomes suspicious of her father and realises he stole an ancient technology called MEDUSA, which has been used to create a bomb. These two narrative strands come together in a nail-biting climax that is not without bloodshed.

The futuristic world Reeve creates in the Mortal Engines quartet is thrillingly believable while his characters and storytelling are full of warmth and humanity. This is a riveting, action-packed adventure for ages 11 through to adult. There are 4 books in the Series and a Movie has been made of this book.

Book Review - Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children - Ransom Riggs


Sixteen-year-old Jacob grew up on his grandfather’s weird but fascinating stories about his past. Were they true or not? It was hard to tell. When Grandpa dies from a mysterious mauling, Jacob falls apart, and he begins his search for something that will help make some sense of things. With his father, he goes to an island off the coast of Wales to find the orphanage where his grandfather had been sent as a boy, before WWII. There he ventures into a fantastical world of Peculiars, monsters, and time loops, where he uncovers a world stranger and more dangerous than any he could have imagined.

Actual vintage photographs, starting with the levitating girl on the cover, are scattered throughout the book, introducing various Peculiars, and moving the story along through several haunting adventures toward its chilling end. Just picking up this book, holding it, feeling its heft, and looking at its cover will entice older YA readers to read it and they won't be disappointed, especially if they like gothic fantasy sprinkled with a little time-traveling adventure, quirky characters, and spine-tingling action. The use of more than 40 unusual but authentic vintage photographs makes the story all the better by lending a sense of eerie realism to its almost absurd, shadowy atmosphere. How the author uses each photo to develop his characters and their story truly is inspiring.

The ending may leave the reader a little unsatisfied and awaiting more adventures from Jacob and his peculiar friends, but those are sure to come. This is the first book in a Series.

Love Bites (Respectful Relationships)


August 14, 2019 9:15 AM to August 14, 2019 3:20 PM


Muswellbrook High School

More information

Love Bites (Respectful Relationships)


August 20, 2019 9:15 AM to August 20, 2019 3:20 PM


Muswellbrook High School

More information

Level One Touch Football Referee Accreditation


August 21, 2019 9:15 AM to August 21, 2019 2:30 PM


Muswellbrook Olympic Park

More information

Transport: Students are required to source their own private transport to and from the event.

Uniform: Full school uniform and a whistle. Football boots are optional

Teacher: Rebecca Hill

Mobile Contact: 0447 066207

Other Information: Lunch will be provided for students. However, the students should bring plenty of water                                                                            

Matt Gidley Rugby League 9's Carnival


August 29, 2019 7:30 AM to August 29, 2019 4:00 PM


Bay Sports Complex 9 Tarrant Road Salamander Bay

More information

Depart: Muswellbrook approx. for 9:00am, arrival at ground. TBC when the competition draw which will be communicated to students prior to the day.

Return: TBC - at conclusion of the last game (depending on the team result).

Transport: Private vehicle

Uniform:    MHS Rugby League Jersey will be provided on the day.

Please bring your own football shorts, football boots, football socks, mouthguard and any other protective equipment required.

Teacher:    Rebecca Hill

Mobile Contact:    0447 066277


Yr 10 Work Placement Week


September 2, 2019 9:15 AM to September 6, 2019 3:20 PM


Muswellbrook NSW, Australia

More information

St Alban’s Spring Fair 2019

The Anglican Parish of Muswellbrook will be holding their Spring Fair on Saturday 31st August in the grounds of St Alban’s Anglican Church (in Lower Brook St, just over the railway line) from 9am - 2 pm. There will be a Jumping Castle, animal petting zoo, pony rides and face painting to keep the kids amused. There will be plenty of market stalls to browse for mum and dad as well as Devonshire Teas, coffee from Cafe Mobilita, all day BBQ, a chocolate wheel running throughout the morning  and a major raffle packed full of awesome prizes, drawn at 1pm. View the quilt display, vintage cars, Fire trucks and Police Bus displays. Be entertained by the Muswellbrook Concert Band and performances by local groups. If you are looking for something for the family to do, come on down and have some fun at our Spring Fair. Money raised will go towards supporting charities locally and abroad.