WELL DONE: Top academic achievers in Grade 11, from left, 3rd Kayla Klingenberg, 1st Inga Mpepanduku and 2nd Wian van Aswegen at the Port Alfred High School seniors’ prize giving last Tuesday Picture: LOUISE KNOWLES
THE senior’s prize giving at Port Alfred High School last Tuesday was an exciting, happy and sad occasion as children earned their prizes, the matrics said goodbye and the new prefects were announced.
In his welcoming address Dallas Ehrke, the head of the school governing body, listed the highs and lows of the past year including rebuilding the foyer after the fire, a new hockey field and road to the clubhouse, a tuckshop nearing completion and a new fence compliments of the Department of Education.
Grades 7-10 are currently using tablets and with the parents support, tablets will be extended to other grades next year.
There was a display of floral art by Chix Pearson, including blazers and colourful children’s toys against a backdrop of a portion of the school fence.
“We have a wealth of talent to show off,” said Pearson.
Long-serving teacher Janet Hyde, who is moving to take up a post in Richard’s Bay, KwaZulu-Natal, handed out the prizes. Pearson thanked her for everything she had done for the school over the past 20 years and wished her well in her new position.
She was described as being everywhere from maths class, to music, to fixing photocopiers in the staffroom.
The head prefects of 2017 are Simyaleza Ndinisa, Adam Nolte, head girl Inga Mpepanduku, and head boy Rian van Aswegen.
CHORUS OF ANGELS: Jami Weeber and the choir sang Doh Ray Me at the Port Alfred High School intermediate phase prize giving last Wednesday Picture: LOUISE KNOWLES
Hyde was also the guest at the intermediate phase prize giving the following evening, when she accompanied the choir on piano. The choir sang Doh Ray Me with a special solo from Jami Weeber.
Head of the intermediate phase Charles Kantor addressed the children and their parents.
He thanked the parents whose support made the tours possible. Grade 4s went to the honey farm and Assegai Trails. Grade 5s went to Bayworld, 43 Air School – where they enjoyed a helicopter ride, and Bush Pigs, and Grade 7s went to the Hogsback “and froze, but they all had a lot of fun,” said Kantor.
Teacher Mia Myburgh announced the awards.
“The red house was the overall winner for 2016,” she said.
ACHIEVEMENT AWARD: Anna Heny in Grade 3 won an academic prize for good overall achievement, creativity and neatness Picture: LOUISE KNOWLES
There was another full house on Thursday, when the foundation phase learners, who were all achievers, won their prizes.
The Grade 3s introduced the evening with a display of great musical exuberance on marimbas, djembe drums and castanets, led by Shannon Wright.
The special guest was Wilma Graham, the foundation phase teacher who wrote the play for the foundation phase concert, A Whale of a Time.
Yma van Zyl, the head of the foundation phase, announced the awards and had a lovely fable to tell the children, the Crow and the Swan, with the help of a slide show. The crow was jealous because the swan was so beautiful. The swan was happy, but jealous of the parrot who had two colours, and the parrot was jealous of the brilliant peacock.
But the peacock said: “I was the most beautiful and the happiest animal in the zoo until I saw the crow. But now I am jealous of him now because he is the only one who is free.
“If you are just yourself, it is the best you can do,” she said.
Teacher Katherine Bakoqana handed out the prizes to the foundation phase children. She also led the Grade 1 and 2 children who demonstrated their trilingual abilities by singing, reading and counting in Xhosa. She has been a foundation phase teacher for 12 years, but recently took the position of the Xhosa teacher. Xhosa was introduced last year in Grade 1 and extended to Grade 2 this year.
It is important for foundation phase children to play sport even during school hours, said van Zyl. They play tennis weekly, they had a splash gala in the first term, and they also do athletics and cross-country as well as cricket, netball, rugby and hockey. Fixtures are arranged against local schools as well as Port Elizabeth and Grahamstown schools.
At the end of the evening, the Grade 3s sang a song of farewell to the foundation phase called, I believe in angels.