Hero photograph
Photo by Andrea Cosgrove

English and Media Studies

Scott Aitken —

This year the English department continued designing and developing a personalised, self-directed, connectivist curriculum, which enables students to become better equipped for the 21st Century and to take more control in the how, and the what, of their learning.

It also gives them more opportunities to follow their passions and interests and utilises our Learn Create Share pedagogy. The importance of students having their own Chromebook is absolutely vital in this; therefore, we strongly urge all students to bring a Chromebook to school in 2020 to help them facilitate their learning. Not having one will be hugely disadvantageous to their education.

The English department continued with its ‘English Scholarship Pathways’ workshops where the English GAT students had opportunities to attend writing workshops, such as ‘Word Fest’ and other visiting writers to be challenged, creative, and cajoled, with their writing.

In Term one we had the Ugly Shakespeare Company come and perform a humourous and adapted version of Shakespeare’s ‘The Taming of the Shrew’, and we hope to have them back in 2020 for their version of ‘Othello’.

We also had the joy of having the master of wit and words, Apirana Taylor, back to regale his tails about his time with writing, performing, travels, music-making and acting.

The staffing for 2019 was Scott Aitken, Chris McLaren, Sasha Johnson, Sarah Handley, Luke Taylor and Russell Cairns. Lynda O’Donnell, sadly, gave her resignation to be a full-time mother and part-time editor and she has been sorely missed.

In Media Studies, the students created some of the best documentaries ever made at Hornby High School  and Shardey Harris, again, produced the best documentary seen at Hornby High School for Level 3.

Media students critically examined the superhero genre through Marvel and D.C. Comics films, and how it has changed over the years due to the fact that society has changed. It included such films as 'Black Panther' and 'Wonder Women' and how the representation of women and African American’s has changed throughout the years.