The 'Ugly Shakespeare' performance by Isla Huffadine

The English Department

It has been a busy start to the year in English. Early on, our Year 10s were treated to a high energy, and very accessible performance of Shakespeare’s iconic romantic tragedy, Romeo and Juliet. However, this version with Jules, was less focused on the tragedy, and more about highlighting the tempestuous nature of teens and teenage love - relevant? We think so. They will then be able to draw upon this learning in their study of Shakespeare later on in the year.

Another awesome opportunity, organised by Mrs Bouffard, our amazing librarian, was for our Writing Club and other keen writers in Years 9-12 to participate in a workshop with writer Kathryn van Beek. For many of these students, they were getting help with pieces to submit for various competitions, such as Re-Draft and Young NZ Writers. We wish these students the best of luck.

The 'Writing Club' workshop — Image by: Isla Huffadine

In class, students across the year levels have yet again been exposed to a range of text types, authors and perspectives. Protest, war, identity and female empowerment poetry have been examined in Year 11 and 12, and Year 13 have been exploring literary theory. In the junior levels, students have been closely examining a range of texts; films, novels and plays. In every instance, all have been encouraged to think critically about what these texts reveal about the world around us.

The new addition to the Department this year is myself, and as the new HoD, I feel really privileged to be surrounded by such passionate and effective colleagues. I am looking forward to the many more learning experiences, both in and outside the classroom, that we have coming up in 2021.