The Auracle – Volume 12, September 2016


Vol. 12, September 2016
In this issue:

Aurora College

3B Smalls Road
Ryde NSW 2112

Phone: 1300 287 629
Fax: 02 9886 7525

From the Principal’s desk

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A solid foundation in STEM gives students the skills to thrive in the careers of tomorrow. Image: Copyright NSW Department of Education.

Last week was a particularly busy week at the coordinating office as we held the second Aurora College Executive Conference for 2016. Joining the senior executive and Head Teachers on this occasion were faculty representatives Carolyn McMurtrie (English), Silvia Rudman (Science) and Susanna Trikilis (Mathematics) and our Teacher-Librarian, Kaylene Taylor. The two-day conference enabled us to commence planning to implement new programs, but also to focus on how to sustain and grow existing programs.

In November last year, all executive and teaching staff completed the Gifted Education Research Resource and Information Centre (GERRIC) mini-Certificate of Gifted Education. At the Executive Conference last week we again had the opportunity to work with GERRIC staff in refining our learning and teaching programs. These sessions concentrated in part on exemplary pedagogy in an online environment. Aurora staff will continue to work with specialist GERRIC staff throughout 2016-2017 to ensure we continue to deliver intellectually stimulating and challenging programs to our students.

STEM education is the learning of science, technology, engineering and mathematics in an interdisciplinary or integrated approach. Students gain and apply knowledge, deepen their understanding and develop creative and critical thinking skills within an authentic context. Typically, it includes inquiry and project-based learning. A solid foundation in STEM gives students the skills to thrive in the careers of tomorrow. A vibrant capacity in STEM will also be a vital driver in Australia’s evolving economy.

At the Executive Conference last week we grappled with the question of how best to implement STEM-focused project based learning in a virtual environment. For this section of the conference we were joined by Dr Scott Sleap, Director of the ME Program. Scott works closely with the NSW Board of Studies Teacher and Educational Standards as a member of their STEM Advisory Group and has consulted on the development of the NSW Department of Education’s Stage 4 STEM Project. In this space, we are aiming to deliver a mix of integrated units and elective courses to our students. Further information will follow.

One of our existing programs which we plan to grow in the coming year is e-Mentoring. Recently, we concluded a very large body of work with Kathleen Vella, one of Australia’s leading authorities on youth mentoring practices. The result of this work is a suite of wonderful resources for 52 separate mentoring sessions. With each session based on a specific topic and with 13 different topics being available to students in each Year group (7 to 10), we will have a strong capacity to deliver highly-personalised programs to our students. My sincere thanks go to Kate Thompson (Head Teacher Teaching and Learning) and Louise Swanson (relieving in Kate’s position whilst she is on leave) for their work on this project. Again, further information will follow.

As ‘citizens’ of two educational communities, our students benefit from a wide range of opportunities that are not available to most other students. This edition of The Auracle is again packed with many examples of our students excelling, both at Aurora and at their home schools. I congratulate all students on their many and varied achievements and encourage all Aurora College Coordinators to share news of these achievements in future editions of The Auracle.

Finally, I wish our Year 12 students all the very best for their upcoming Higher School Certificate examinations. Of course, this is our first cohort to complete the Higher School Certificate, with students studying one or more of the following courses: Physics; Mathematics; Mathematics Extension 1; Mathematics Extension 2; English Advanced; English Extension 1; English Extension 2; Economics; and Agriculture. I hope that the completion of Year 12 is the next step in happy and fulfilling lives for all of you.

Chris Robertson


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Deputy’s report

Good luck and farewell to Year 12

This is an exciting, but also a sad time for Aurora as we farewell our first cohort to complete Year 12. The achievements of our students is to be commended and we wish them the best of luck in their future endeavours.

Higher School Certificate examinations begin on Thursday 13 October 2016. Students will not be required to be at school from day 1, Term 4. Teachers will be available during their scheduled Year 12 lessons to provide ‘last minute’ advice and assistance to their students. Students are encouraged to make appointments with their teachers during this time to ensure they achieve their best in their examinations.

All Year 12 partner schools have been sent a graduation certificate to issue to our students. Additionally, subject prize winners will also receive an iTunes gift voucher in recognition for their excellent school-based results. We have asked all partner schools to present these at their Year 12 graduation assemblies.

Semester 2 reports for Year 12 have been issued via the parent portal in Sentral. These reports show the progress that each student has made towards achieving specific course outcomes in their Higher School Certificate course. Aurora reports are issued independently of the assessment and reporting processes of the home schools of our students. Partner schools will supply their own report for the other subjects studied by each student.

If you have any concerns regarding your child’s progress or well-being, please contact the coordinating office by phone on 1300 287 629 or email (

Coordinator of the term

Emma Ireland at Walcha Central School has been awarded Outstanding Aurora College Coordinator for Term 3. Emma has provided excellent support for Elijah Fortescue and is always very quick at getting things organised and returned to Aurora staff. Congratulations, Emma. We appreciate your outstanding effort and commitment.

Professional Learning

Student and staff well-being was a focus of professional learning this term with excellent sessions presented by Jeannette James from Principals Australia Institute. In the first session, staff had the opportunity to reflect on their own well-being and in the second session they learned how to recognise and respond to students experiencing mental health difficulties.

Teacher well-being is critically relevant to whole school well-being. If students are going to be in an effective learning environment they need teachers who have optimal access to a knowledge base and are also open to learning themselves. One in seven staff members in a school will suffer from a mental condition and schools can positively affect staff mental health.

In session 2, Jeannette gave staff a range of  strategies that they could use to manage stress and strengthen the mental health and well-being of our school community. She said that promotion, prevention and early intervention are central to supporting students experiencing mental health difficulties. Jeanette also offered the following advice: “Take time to be you. We can’t direct the wind, but we can adjust the sails.”

Australian Teacher magazine

This month, Aurora College featured in an article in the Australian Teacher magazine. The article, titled “Action team prepared for challenge” focused on the college’s work in prioritising and promoting good mental health.

Welfare Team (L to R): Sharleen Mulawin, Kathy Klados, Louise Swanson, Greg Smith.

The Aurora Welfare Team (L to R): Sharleen Mulawin, Kathy Klados, Louise Swanson, Greg Smith.

Life Choices for students in year 12

When students reach the end of their final year of school they are faced with making some important decisions. It is not uncommon for students to feel that the choice they make at the end of Year 12 will determine their entire life, causing them considerable anxiety and stress. It is important that parents provide support and understanding to students through this time. Set aside time to listen to their concerns reassure them that if what they choose to do after high school doesn’t work out there will be another pathway to success. The following resources may assist you:

Study and school work

With the prospect of Higher School Certificate and yearly examinations coming up, some students will feel the pressure of study and school work more intensely than others. It is normal to feel some stress and pressure when it comes to study and school work, however, it is important that students and parents know when stress becomes a threat to well-being and mental health.

It is important that students have support to help them manage their stress levels and study in an effective and productive way. Some students may also experience disappointment or feelings of hopelessness if they do not get the marks they were aiming for. It is important, therefore, that students learn to manage failure and not let test scores seriously impact their well-being and sense of self-worth. The following sites may help students deal with the stress associated with examinations and school work:

What’s coming up next term?

  • Applications for enrolment in Year 11 2017 close Friday 28 October 2016. For further information, please visit
  • The next Residential School will be held from Monday 31 October to Friday 4 November in Canberra. All Years 7 to 10 students must attend. Year 11 Physics and Chemistry students must also attend to complete the compulsory practical components of these courses.
  • Meeting for parents and students new to Aurora in 2017 on Monday 7 November. Information to forwarded early next term.
  • Year 7 (2017) Orientation days on Tuesday 29 November and Thursday 1 December. Information to be forwarded early next term.
  • New Years 8 to 11 (2017) students Orientation day on Wednesday 30 November. Information to be forwarded early next term.

Kathy Klados

Deputy Principal

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Connect locally, learn globally


The cast should be off in 5 weeks

Hello, my name is Lily Callaghan. I am 13 years old and in Year 8 at Wilcannia Central School, having moved to the town at the beginning of 2016. I enjoy living in Wilcannia because everyone knows each other and the people are closer and friendlier than in the city.

Wilcannia is a small town on the Darling River in Far Western NSW. For most of the year the river has been very low or dry but we have had a lot of rain recently and there is a pretty high flow at the moment. It makes the town a happier place when the water level rises.

In Wilcannia we make our own entertainment. There are no movies or shopping centres. We have a small IGA grocery store, a roadhouse, a chemist, 2 cafes and a golf club. The golf club is on the site of NSW’s first brewery, Resch’s Lion Brewery.

Wilcannia also has its own radio station, Wilcannia River Radio, which I have been lucky to have access to as part of our school’s weekly show, but also as a DJ after school. Our local radio DJs have taught me how to use the equipment and play music as well as make announcements and talk on the radio. I really enjoy this and I am considering a career in radio. This opportunity was available to me because of the small size of our community and the helpful nature of most of our townspeople.

In Term 1, we worked with Sharing Stories to create an animated film of one of the local Paakintji stories, The Moon and the Gecko. In Term 2, we watched the Bell Shakespeare Players and worked with Heaps Decent to create our own original electronic music. I really enjoyed this and hope to continue making music that I can play on the local radio. This term we worked with Thikkabilla Vibrations to write traditional songs and choreograph dances and also with Desert Pea Media to create a Wilcannia Rap with original lyrics by secondary students. We also filmed a music video around town to go with it, during which I broke my wrist.

I have enjoyed these creative opportunities that I had not experienced on the Central Coast. Many of these opportunities are targeted to remote students and I am glad I am here to participate in them. Before I came to Wilcannia and Aurora, I was in the selective class at Gorokan High School. I had a great science teacher there and I was very lucky to still have her as my science teacher when I moved 1000 km away and joined a virtual selective class! Residential is my favourite part of Aurora as I get to catch up with the friends I have made online this year. It also gives me the chance to catch up with Dr Rudman and hear what has happened on the Central Coast since I was last there.

Lily Callaghan

Year 8, Wilcannia Central School

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Community liaisons

Young High School students

Young High School students

On Tuesday, 6 September I headed to Young HS (via Boorowa) to run an HSC revision day for the Extension 1 Mathematics students based there. The next day we were able to get through a lot of helpful work, especially on Inverse Functions, Motion and HSC revision.

Thanks to the YHS staff, who made me very welcome. They also convinced me that it was smarter to travel back through Harden-Murrumburrah, but I had no idea what awaited me!

Leaving Young, I saw the landscape adorned with cherry and berry farms and, yes, the road did seem better for driving than the one I had taken the night before.

But a different challenge was ahead.

I knew from experience that country roads had their hazards, especially kangaroos. On this trip I had seen large, dead kangaroos and even a fallen magpie.

But just 10 minutes out of Young there was something on an altogether bigger scale. The sign simply said, “WOMBAT”.

I knew I must push on. I had heard wombats could be huge. But here it was. In broad daylight. Right in front of me.

There was no avoiding it. It seemed to take up the whole road. And more besides!

I carefully turned left and it was still there.

Sadly, I drove straight through the middle of this Wombat.

But… looking through the window, I could see that life remained in this Wombat and it was strangely unaffected!

I didn’t stop, but you can see what this Wombat looks like in the pictures below!

Ian Whiteway

Mathematics Teacher

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English report

The English faculty eagerly awaits your contribution for the 2016 Writer’s Prize!


Remember, entries close on Friday 21 October, 2016.

Jake Henzler

Head Teacher English

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Mathematics report

This year, our students competed for the first time in the online version of the Australian Mathematics Competition. Congratulations to the 28 students who took part and the many more who competed via the paper version at their home school. Official results were received this week with outstanding results across all year groups. The following students were awarded a Distinction in the competition:

Liam Boon (Year 7, Dubbo College South Campus)

Kahli Henly (Year 7, Jindabyne Central School)

Eleanor Giger (Year 7, Orange High School)

Maddison Gay (Year 7, Jindabyne Central School)

Daniel Dehaan (Year 7, Coolamon Central School)

Jonah Menzies (Year 7, Maclean High School)

Luke D’Ettorre (Year 8, Willyama High School)

Zac Giger (Year 9, Orange High School)

Certificates will be posted to home schools once they are received. Congratulations to all students on their participation in this prestigious competition.

Mrs Renee Dawson

Head Teacher Mathematics

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Professional learning special event

Aurora College will be presenting Dan Haesler in a professional learning special event in our virtual learning environment next term. Dan is an international keynote speaker who works with organisations around issues of engagement, wellbeing, mindset & leadership.

As well as schools, Dan has consulted to government education projects, corporate business, The Black Dog Institute and other not-for-profit organisations. He was a very popular keynote speaker at the Rural and Remote Conference hosted by Aurora College in Bathurst earlier this year.

This special event will be available to all government school teachers in rural and remote areas of NSW. Details will be distributed to all schools via email and SchoolBiz. We hope to see as many of our colleagues as possible.

Louise Swanson

R/Head Teacher Teaching and Learning.

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Residential school program

Final preparations are underway for the Residential School next term. Please ensure you communicate all required information to the Aurora College office as promptly as possible.

Students will undertake a range of STEM activities, as well as excursions to further develop their skills and knowledge in our core subjects of English, Mathematics and Science. Students will also have valuable class time with their teachers. Year 11 students will be undertaking mandatory Physics and Chemistry Practicals as well as having some face-to-face lessons with their teachers.

In addition to the many activities organised to enrich student learning, Mr Robertson has organised for us to meet with Senator Fiona Nash, Deputy Leader of The Nationals, Minister for Regional Development, Local Government and Territories, and Regional Communications. We will meet with her at Parliament House on Tuesday 1 November.

The SRC made a request to have sessions of Lazer tag added to our schedule, and we were lucky enough to be able to book in sessions for each year group.

Louise Swanson

R/Head Teacher Teaching and Learning

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Year 7 writing samples

Fire by Nina Waters (7ENG1)

Metal box holding fierce flames

Growing bigger whipping the walls of the metal box

Hot coals hide under the raging flames

Metal box starts to fail, flames die down

Flames getting smaller and simpler

Only coals left, faintly glowing


Starts small with a pile of sticks

Adults standing around wanting warmth

Kids run around playing, not caring

More wood is added, flames crackle and grow bigger

The night grows colder, darker, scarier

Kids come to join the wonderful warmth

Flames reach up and touch the starry night sky

Burns through the night, gone in the morning


Big paddock, one spark on the dry grass

Little flames start running along the ground

Flames bigger now climbing up the trees

Eating properties leaving only ash

House sits in its path of destruction

People panicking, scared of ferocious flames

The flames run up my front steps and engulf my house

Flames gone, house gone only ash remains


Jonah Menzies (7ENG1)

Our cosy warm bed was hard to leave,

But snow day was here it was hard to believe,

In cold, cloud covered, Cooma in zero degrees,

Despite our snow clothes we thought we would freeze.


We piled on the bus, to Blue Cow we go,

Aboard the old turtle we crawled to the snow,

At last we got there and collected our gear,

Walked onto the snow we were finally here.


Dad came over to help when disaster struck,

His ski boots bust open, oh what bad luck,

He headed away to get a new pair,

And we were left standing there.


We didn’t know how to ski, turn or stop,

As we looked down the slope from the mountain top,

We pushed off together, Jos and I,

Then she fell over and I skied by.


My second run was not a success,

I too fell over, what a mess,

My ski came off and refused to go on,

I was really frustrated and just could have gone.


Then came time for my lesson, at last I would know,

How to ski, turn and stop at the snow,

I learnt very quickly it soon became fun,

I got good enough to try a harder run.


Dad took me over to a run that was long,

Down the mountain I zipped, zigzagged and zoomed along,

Picking my path like a football star,

Dogging and turning and sliding afar.


All my fear and frustration had gone away,

What a great way to end and amazing day.


Devlen Strachan (7ENG1)

The fox walks across the earth,

Not knowing there’ll be a hearth,

In that spot, many years forward


She doesn’t know about the civilizations,

Or the great nations,

That are going to reside,

In the pale earth wide


She catches a rabbit in its burrow,

And with her eyebrows in a furrow,

She watches

The dark shapes float across the snowy terrain


The dark shapes grew closer,

Spears in hands and dark looks froze her,

Against the snowy terrain.


Her dark pelt

Stood out plainly,

Making her easy to see.


But she ran like an arrow

And not even a sparrow

Could outrun her,

And the spears flew by her.


She ran through the trees.

She reached a cliff with wild seas,

The cliff was pounded by the waves.

She turned around to find some caves.


The hunters ran over the hill,

Standing still they checked the skies.

But they turned back,

For the storm was too big.


She took shelter in the caves, safe.


Elizabeth Hoyle’s (Year 7) submission to the Bragg Science Competition

One machine, a Million Lives – The Electronic Pacemaker

Long story short, the electronic pacemaker is the reason I knew my grandparents. Without this Australian invention, my grandfather on my mother’s side probably wouldn’t be alive today and my grandmother would’ve died at the age of 50. I’m not the only one, either. Millions of people in Australia have been fitted with and are still alive because of the electronic pacemaker.

The electronic pacemaker is the most commonly used method for treating patients with cardiac problems at the moment. Basically, it works by sending an electrical pulse into the patient’s heart whenever it seems too slow. The pulse is calculated to be just enough to shock the heart and get it up to speed again, but not enough that the patient would feel anything.

As a result of their illness, most of these patients don’t have the intrinsic impulses that keep their hearts beating consistently that other people do; the electronic pacemaker is built to fill that need.

The man that invented the electronic pacemaker was Wilson Greatbatch, who worked as a medical researcher in the 1950’s. Strangely enough, he said that he discovered the pacemaker by accident. He was building an oscillator to record heartbeat sounds when he pulled the wrong resistor out of a box and realised that what he had done was actually a major breakthrough in medical research.

The first electronic pacemaker was implanted into a patient on the 8th October, 1958. The patient was a 43-year-old man suffering from a complete heart block and Stokes-Adams attacks. Although this was successful, the pacemaker wasn’t yet reliable until 1970.

The major difference between the electronic pacemaker and old pacemakers was that the electronic pacemaker is implantable. This means that the electronic pacemaker could be surgically implanted into a patient’s chest. Old pacemakers were roughly the size of a television and shocked the patient when in use, so having a smaller model with less damage to patients was a major jump forward.

The electronic pacemaker was recognised as one of the 10 greatest engineering achievements of the last 50 years by the National Society of Professional Engineers. At around this time, Greatbatch left the world of pacemakers and went on to do research into battery technology and medical research into treating diseases such as HIV/AIDS. Wilson Greatbatch died at the age of 92 in 2011.

Elaine Cassel, my grandmother, died last September of right-sided heart failure. She was diagnosed as a teenager and told she would be lucky to live to 50. Because of her electronic pacemaker and incredible spirit, she lived to the age of 79. But here we come to the one problem with electronic pacemakers: the laws surrounding them. My grandmother was in hospital for a week before she died, and in all that time not one of the doctors responsible for her care bothered to tell us about her pacemaker. By law, doctors can only turn off a patient’s pacemaker if it is operating under 80% of the time. If they did turn it off at that stage, they would be considered to be performing an act that would directly lead to the patient’s death, and euthanasia is still illegal. So, to put it in the words of my uncle, Nanna was too sick for them to help her.

We did eventually manage to get Nanna to a hospice on the shores of Lake Burley-Griffin on the Tuesday. She died that day with the sun on her face, the wind in her hair and her favourite birds around her feet. I still remember Dad getting the phone call from Mum, saying that she’d died. We were just coming back from Tharwa National Park when Dad pulled over to answer the phone. At that point, both my brother and I knew what it meant, so we weren’t surprised when Dad turned around and told us she’d passed away.

But I also remember all of the times I walked through my grandparents front door and saw her smile and when I woke up in the mornings when we were staying at their house and had a talk with her. Without the electronic pacemaker, I wouldn’t have those memories. My grandmother would be someone completely foreign to me. The electronic pacemaker, invented by Wilson Greatbatch, gave my Nanna nearly 30 extra years to live, and that’s why, in my opinion, it’s the greatest Australian scientific invention ever created.

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Bright lights of Aurora

Congratulations to Bradley Pearsall (Year 12, Corowa High School) who was presented with the Ministers Award for Excellence in Student Achievement. Bradley was presented with the award at Parliament House, Sydney on Tuesday 20 September.

Congratulations also to Tieke Thomas (Year 11, Molong Central School) who was elected School Captain and President of the SRC for the coming year at Molong Central School.

Well done to Darcy Hopkins and Devlen Strachan (Year 8, Nowra High School) who recently competed in the Tournament of Minds State Championships at the University of NSW.

Congratulations to Maria Tynan (Year 7, Leeton High School) who has performed very well in recent Eisteddfods. Maria won three categories for her speech, three categories for Piano, and won a Best Competitor Award. She also finished third in the Memorial Quest Age 12-18.

What have you been doing in your home school recently? Ask your Aurora College Coordinator to send a brief report for the next edition of The Auracle. All contributions gratefully accepted by email to

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Masterclass program

Since the last edition of The Auracle, students, staff and parents have attended a range of outstanding masterclasses.

In association with the Australian Nuclear Science and Technology Organisation (ANSTO), on 25 August our students had the opportunity to learn about the Feather Map project and speak to one of the scientists working on the project.

Our partnership with Macquarie University and their Leap Links program also enabled us to present sessions on study wellbeing and careers in health and helping. Some of our senior students attended the Study Wellbeing video conference series, including How Social Media Can Help You Study and Stress Is Good For You – Right?.

On September 13, students attended Chiropractic: A path to cracking success and MRI: Physicists and Engineers make it happen.  On September 20, students also attended How can I help? – The secret to making a difference.

On 20 September, some of our Years 7 and 8 students attended Full Steam Ahead. This event was offered in association with the Australian Business and Community Network, Microsoft and the Museum of Arts and Sciences (MAAS). This session delivered computer science education and interactive experiences, and enabled students to engage with high-profile STEAM career professionals.

The Finish Line masterclass was run in collaboration with Elevate, and open to Year 12 students as a means to support their ability to cope with the pressures of the final few weeks leading up to the HSC examinations. This session provided students with practical strategies to manage the pressure and stress of the final period of Year 12.

Our masterclass for parents was held on 21 September. This session was designed to help parents support their child in managing their time, staying motivated and prioritising work. This was very well attended by parents not only in the Aurora College community, but also from rural areas around NSW.

We are currently reviewing and cementing procedures to monitor attendance during masterclasses. As such, it is imperative that students log into masterclasses in a way that clearly identifies themselves and Aurora College.

Louise Swanson

R/Head Teacher Teaching and Learning.

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Mentoring program

Sharleen Mulawin (Learning and Support Teacher) will be assuming leadership of the Mentoring program from next term. She is currently in the process developing a survey to help identify student interests to find the best mentor for interested students. She will then undertake the process of sourcing new mentors to build on the volunteers that we currently work with.

A new mentoring structure will be put in place for 2017 which will expand the scope and scale of the program.  This will enable implementation of the newly developed e-Mentoring resources developed by Kathleen Vella.

Louise Swanson

R/Head Teacher Teaching and Learning.

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Library report


I have been having a wonderful time this term visiting some of our Year 7 classes to showcase the new features of OLIVER.

This new version is tablet friendly and much easier for students to use. The added advantage for our students is that our ebook providers are now fully integrated, so students only need to log into OLIVER via their student portal account to access all of our digital library resources, on any device. Students can read offline on personal devices, once they have borrowed the book out to themselves.

If any other student would like assistance using the new version of OLIVER, they can send me an email so we can set up a time and I can work with them in my Adobe classroom.

Ex Libris Aurora

The latest issue of Ex Libris Aurora, showcasing some of the titles recently added to our school library, has been emailed directly to students and staff. If you missed receiving the latest issue of Ex Libris Aurora, please let me know and I will arrange for a copy to be sent to you.

The reading hour

Congratulations to Zoe Jenkins and Jaimee Soo for their outstanding entries for the reading hour challenge. Your mystery prizes will be presented at our Residential in Canberra!


Inspired by Star Trek, NASA scientists believe they can bend space-time and allow us to travel at many times the speed of light. Seriously! This is just one of the featured articles in this month’s edition of Cosmos Magazine Online!  Log into OLIVER through the Student Portal, and click the link to Cosmos Magazine Online to read all the details!

Spring has sprung and so have many new titles from some of our favourite authors! This is a fantastic time of year to check out what is newly published. If you read a review or someone recommends a good book for you to read, I’d love to know about it.


Featured staff reader – Louise Swanson

Staff at Aurora College have been making the most of our digital library resources. Our Head Teacher Teaching and Learning, recommends reading:

Wuthering Heights – This classic of English literature depicts the lives of the Earnshaws and the Lintons from the perspective of servant Nelly Dean, explaining the history of the families to an outsider Mr Lockwood. Mr Lockwood’s interest arises following a supernatural experience during a visit to Wuthering Heights. The story involves family allegiances, issues of inequality, revenge, and a love story that endures all – even death!

Our digital library is growing, so keep making requests and suggestions for the types of books you’d like to see in our Library at Aurora College.

Happy reading!

Kaylene Taylor

Teacher Librarian

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Spotlight on … Jane Taranto

I started working as Aurora College’s School Administrative Officer at the beginning of Term 3 this year. Previously, I worked in schools in the Ryde and Lane Cove area which is north of Sydney.

I live in North Ryde with my husband, two teenage daughters, a dog called Gracie and a cat called Buttons. I have lived in Sydney for the past 13 years but I grew up in the Upper Yarra Valley on the outskirts of Melbourne.

Outside of Aurora I spend most afternoons being taxi driver to my daughters and taking the dog for a walk.  My favourite day of the week is Tuesday because my eldest daughter and I are volunteer feeders at ‘Riding for the Disabled’. We have the opportunity to look after seven horses. We give them dinner, clean out their yards, rug them in the colder months and prepare their breakfast for the next day. My favourite part is when we finish and we get to give them a pat, a cuddle and a carrot!

I really love the variety of my job at Aurora College and the great people I have spoken with and hopefully, I will get to see via iSee in the very near future.

Jane Taranto

School Administration Officer

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Tip from a techie

As I mentioned in the last newsletter, we’ve been working to release a new version of our help desk. I’m happy to announce that this is now live. You will immediately notice a difference if you visit our help centre at One of the biggest new features is an improved help centre itself. You can now search among self-help documents that have been created specifically for Aurora College. We are working on adding more information, so you can check the help centre before having to contact the support team.

The other change is the way cases are managed. You can now email the support team at, and your request will automatically be added to the help desk system, or you can log in to the help centre and start a conversation there. Logging into the help centre allows you can see what is happening with your request, add more details, and check previous requests.

Whatever way you decide to get help, whether it be via the help centre self-help documents, by starting a conversation via email or the help-centre, you can be sure that we will do our best to help you!

Ben Hillsley

Learning Technologies Support Officer

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From the engine room

We have had a very busy term with reports, student awards, Year 12 graduation paperwork, new enrolments for 2017 and the up and coming residentials. Our new staff member Jane has “hit the ground running”. We remind our families that if any of your contact details have changed, please notify your home school and Aurora College. This will enable us to keep you informed.

We wish our families a great break and look forward to term 4 and residential camp.

Denise Deaves

School Administrative Manager

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A message from our technology sponsor, Microsoft


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Aurora College; 3b Smalls Road, Ryde, NSW 2112
Phone: 02 9886 7560; Fax: 02 9886 7525; Email:
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