Volume 30 Issue 15 - 28 May 2021

From the Principal

Andrew Watt – Principal

I have offered my ‘From the Principal’ article this week to our Deputy Principal (Teaching & Learning) K-12, Adam Majsay, who writes below on his thoughts about what is valuable about learning for our students. 

What we value in learning

Learning at Emanuel School is different. We focus on learning that has life-long significance for every student, with relevance and transferability beyond the parameters of any single discipline. Over many years, Emanuel teachers have explored a range of teaching frameworks, capturing the best of each, to form the basis of our own Emanuel teaching philosophy. 

At the core of Emanuel’s approach is the fostering of a culture of deep and authentic learning in which student’s thinking is drawn out, valued and made visible. Building on robust, research-driven approaches, our teaching draws on an interconnected framework of learning partnerships and student-centred, innovative pedagogy. A key characteristic of our practice is learning that leads to students’ acquisition of deep learning competencies – collaboration, communication, critical thinking, creativity, citizenship and character. 

How and what we teach

Adam Majsay – Deputy Principal (Teaching & Learning) K-12

With approaches to teaching anchored in the research of Michael Fullan, and Harvard University Project Zero’s Ron Ritchart and Mark Church, Emanuel’s learning philosophy provides for deep, authentic learning opportunities which future-proof our students for an ever-changing, unpredictable and complex world. All of this is possible, while maintaining a firm grounding in the content knowledge (the ‘stuff’) of each subject discipline and the value of explicit instruction in supporting student learning.

How our teachers learn

Teacher professional learning at Emanuel is guided by the principle that for our students to grow as deep thinkers and life-long learners within a culture of exploration and innovation, the School must also provide that environment for teachers. Our in-house professional learning Focus Groups place each teacher in the role of learner, embarking on personal, year-long inquiry action research projects. Our teachers meet fortnightly and dig into how they each create rich learning experiences for their classes, building students’ capacities for deep and authentic learning. 

How we provide feedback on student learning

Regular, timely feedback is one of the most important factors contributing to student growth in their learning. Formal, summative feedback, through academic reports and parent/teacher interviews (3-Way Learning Conversations), is one highly visible mode of input into student learning. On the other hand, ongoing formative feedback – feedback for learning – is that in-the-moment input which supports students taking the immediate next steps to build on what they have already achieved. Both are important.

As a School, we continue to reflect on and work to refine our processes for supporting students as learners through the types of feedback we offer, and the ways and times in which it is given. We’re in the process of reviewing our academic report models in both Primary and High School. Parents in Primary have already provided valuable insights into our K-6 report model, and shortly, input from High School parents and students will also be sought, as we seek to continually enhance the quality of the feedback our students receive to support them on their learning journey.

Emanuel School’s vision is to be a place ‘where the individual excels’. Our team of dynamic, expert educators continue to inspire me each day, as they demonstrate their commitment to enabling our students to embrace their individuality and uniqueness as learners, to foster creativity and innovation, and to equip our students with the capabilities that will see them thrive, for life.

Welcome back to Emanuel

We welcomed 22 Emanuel School Alumni to our annual Careers Space event on Wednesday morning. Our alumni shared their post-school study and career experiences and advice with our Years 11 and 12 students and thoroughly enjoyed stepping back into the Waxman Gates in Stanley Street. Thank you to Claire Pech, Careers Advisor and Sonia Newell, Development Officer – Alumni & Community Relations for organising and hosting the event.


The oldest child in your family will have brought home a copy of the 2020 YearBook this week. I hope you enjoy paging through this wonderful collection of our students’ artwork, photographs and reports from what was a very challenging year. Thanks to the valued advice from the High School students’ Sustainability Committee we reduced the number of YearBooks printed and distributed this year and have also developed a version which you can access online. To ensure our students’ privacy you won’t be able to download this version, so please keep your printed copy safe for posterity.

Mazal tov

To the Years 3-6 IP students who shared their Chamber Music performances with each other on Tuesday and Wednesday of this week.

To the Senior Choir for their High School Assembly performance this week of We are the World by Michael Jackson. 

Quote of the week

The two most powerful warriors are patience and time. 
– Leo Tolstoy, War and Peace.

YidLife Crisis

From the Head of Jewish Life

Rabbi Daniel Siegel – Head of Jewish Life

Being inspired

Socrates: The gift you possess… is not a skill but an inspiration. There is a divinity moving you like the force contained in the stone Euripides calls a magnet. This stone not only attracts iron rings but also imbues them with the power of attracting other rings. Sometimes you may see a number of pieces of iron and rings suspended from one another, forming quite a long chain – and all of them derive their power of suspension from the original stone. This is like how the Muse first of all inspires men herself, and from these inspired ones is suspended a chain of other people who take inspiration…

This week’s parashah, BeHa’alotkha (“When you raise up”), introduces the “seventy elders”, enlisted to assist Moshe, with the following words:

Gather for Me seventy elders, bring them to the Tent of Meeting, taking their place there with you…I will draw from the spirit that is on you and put it upon them…
And, when the spirit rested upon them, they experienced inspiration, in the moment.

The elders are moved by the spirit of Moshe, but only momentarily.

In contrast, we soon read of two individuals, Eldad and Medad, who are not at the Tent of Meeting with Moshe, “yet, the spirit rested upon them and they became inspired”. When Yehoshua, Moshe’s deputy, seeks to restrain them, Moshe replies, “Would that the Lord put His spirit upon all the people”.

Unlike the seventy elders, these two individuals are not deriving their spirited state from Moshe but, through their own being, directly from God. Accordingly, they are themselves inspired and this state is not momentary, if and when the spirit moves them.

Inspired living informs one’s being and is not a magnetic force being exerted from a source without. Moshe’s calling upon all to be like Eldad and Medad is reflective of the statement of God to Moshe: “And you, remain here with Me”, in an ongoing inspired, dedicated state.

As parents and educators, we strive to encourage and guide our children and students to live inspired lives.

But, can anyone but a Moshe remain atop the “mountain”?

The story of Eldad and Medad, who attain and maintain their inspired being within the Israelite camp, not in the Tent of Meeting or upon Mount Sinai, suggests that we each can live inspired lives.




Ma Koreh

Adam Carpenter – Head of Jewish Life Primary

Year K Haifa – Pathways

Thank you to parent photographer Ofer Levy for taking a number of wonderful photographs at our Year K Haifa Pathways ceremony last week. 

Hebrew letters and fruit salad

Students have been very busy in their Hebrew lessons, celebrating their learning and putting their knowledge of Hebrew into action to taste the fruits of their labour.

Year 1 

Year 1 celebrated the completion of their first Tal Am book, which focuses on learning to read and write the letters  א ב ג ד ה ש. Using these letters, students built words and wrote short sentences to put their learning into action.   

Year 6 

Students in Year 6 have been learning vocabulary necessary for making a fruit salad, including kitchen objects, names of fruit and a variety of verbs such as cut, mix and pour. 

Students applied this knowledge, following a recipe in Hebrew to make a delicious fruit salad which they enjoyed eating.


Primary News

Meg Carroll – Deputy Head of Primary

MRA survey – a Leader in Me initiative

As you know our school’s main wellbeing program is Leader in Me, which teaches 21st-century leadership and life skills to students and creates a culture of student empowerment based on the idea that every child can be a leader.

Our School will be conducting surveys to learn more about key areas of strength and areas of needed growth in our School. In order for us to have a holistic picture of what is going on in our School, we are asking all full-time staff members, parents/guardians, and students (in Year 4 and upwards) to participate.

Parent participation

If you decide to participate, you will be asked to complete a survey (without sharing your name or other identifying information) that will be available through the link below. The survey is completely voluntary, but we do hope to get feedback from one member of every household.

The parent/guardian survey takes about 12 minutes to complete and will ask you questions about your child and about his or her experience in our School. If you have more than one child attending, you will be asked to think about the oldest child’s experiences as you answer questions related to his or her growth.  

Please complete the survey by 12.00 pm Friday 16 July 2021. Thank you in advance for your participation. 

Year 6 Interrelate session

Thank you to all Year 6 students and parents for participating in the online Interrelate evening on Wednesday evening. We hope it was a useful learning experience for all. 

ESafety – free webinars for parents

There are a variety of FREE webinars for parents that are hosted by the eSafety Commissioner. Topics include how parents and carers can set up devices and apps to help kids and young people stay safe online, a parent guide to online sexual harassment and Image Based Abuse (Term 3) and a parent guide to digital technologies and mental health (Term 4). You can register your interest and find out more here.

Year 3 excursion – Kamay National Park

As part of their transdisciplinary unit, First Contacts –  Looking Through the Eyes of Others, Year 3 went on a magnificent excursion to Kamay National Park this week with the aim of being able to identify and synthesise the multiple perspectives in relation to colonisation.

The learning began with an interactive presentation about Australian explorers and the perspectives of the first Australians. They then dressed up in colonial costumes and engaged in a range of immersive activities. After this, the group followed Captain James Cook’s footsteps, discovering more about the journey and investigated the observations of Sir Joseph Banks in the natural environment. A fabulous day was had by all.

Exciting News

We are excited to announce that Annabelle Turrall has given birth to a beautiful baby boy, Albie John Lomas. Chris and Annie are thrilled with their gorgeous new addition and everyone is healthy and well. We look forward to meeting Albie soon!



Primary Art Leaders

Gaby Seemann

On Monday 24 May 2021, The Primary Year 6 Art Leaders taught Years 1, 2 and 3 water colour painting.

Ethan Gross

There were twelve students and their artworks were amazing. We worked on their techniques, and gave them ideas on their artworks’ rhythm. The students have been engaged and love participating in this project.

First, pencils were used and drawing began. Some children drew animals, but most preferred to work in abstraction. Once the drawing came to an end, paintbrushes were handed out and the painting began.

It was a great learning experience for both the students and the Primary Art Leaders.



Primary Extra-Curricular – Term 3

Emma Hill – Primary Teacher and Coordinator of Extra-Curricular Programs

The Term 3 Extra-Curricular schedule is now available and activities are open for booking. Please note bookings for all sports activities will be open until Friday 18 June 2021 (Week 9). Other Extra-Curricular activities will be open until the start of the term. We recommend booking activities early to secure your child’s enrolment as many activities have maximum (and minimum) enrolment numbers. 

Please click on the links listed in the Extra-Curricular Schedule to enrol your child into a wide range of Extra-Curricular activities. 

Extra-Curricular (including music and sport) contact details:

Please contact tutors/teachers directly if possible. All other inquiries can be sent to Emma Hill       

Sport contacts:

Kristy Genc  (Director of Sport K-12)        
Stuart Taylor (Primary Sport Coordinator)          
Emma Hill (Primary Extra-Curricular & EActive Coordinator)           

Music contacts:

Diana Springford (Head of Music P-12)           
Joanne De Araujo (PA to Head of Music)             
For information about Infants String Program and Private Tuition            

Club information, including enrolment and booking details, are now online on the Primary Extra-Curricular schedule page on the Parent Portal



Reconciliation Week

Gabrielle Wynhausen – Primary Teacher

Reconciliation Week 

This week is Reconciliation Week – a week that marks our Country’s reconciliation journey and encourages us to take action to work towards a more mature and reconciled Australia. To mark Reconcilation Week, our Primary School students wore Yellow and raised money for the Children’s Ground Organisation. They were introduced to the Schools Reconciliation Challenge, an art and writing competition open to NSW and ACT students. This year, the theme is Under One Sky: Yesterday, Today and Forever. Here are the entry details if your child would like to enter this competition.

Students have been engaging in the Reconciliation process in class in a variety of ways. Some students have written their own Acknowledgement of Country using a guide from Narragunnawali, an organisation that supports schools to promote knowledge and pride in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander histories, cultures and contributions. This was a meaningful process in which the students explored the significance of an Acknowledgement of Country and the difference between a Welcome to Country and an Acknowledgement of Country.

They then worked together to explore the following questions:

  • What is the name of the language group of this area?
  • Where does this Country extend to?
  • What some of our neighbouring language groups?
  • What are some special places on this Country?
  • What is special about this area?
  • What do we love to do here?
  • Could we incorporate words from the local language into our Acknowledgement?
  • What does reconciliation mean to us?

Here are a selection of Year 5 students’ Acknowledgement of Country:





K-12 Sport News

Kristy Genc – Director of Sports K-12

Term 3 Sport registrations 

Registrations for the Primary and High School Sport Programs will open on Monday. Information on all the programs available can be accessed on the weekly sport and EActive pages on the Parent Portal. 

Students are encouraged to take part in an Emanuel weekly sport option, and Year 7 students are reminded that weekly sport is part of the School’s requirements. Once registered for a sport, it is expected that students commit to the selected activity, therefore please ensure that students select options that do not clash with other activities. The weekly sport options provided are in addition to any representative sport programs. 




Primary Weekly Sport Program

In Term 3 the following sport programs will be offered to Primary students:

  • Years K-6 Gymnastics Program 
  • Years 3-6 Running/Athletics Program 
  • Years 3-6 Tennis Program
  • Years 3-6 Football and Futsal Program 
  • Years 3-6 Swimming Program
  • Years 5-6 Basketball Competition
  • EActive K-2 Multi-sports
  • EActive Kindergarten Zumba
  • EActive Year 1-2 Dance
  • EActive Year 3-6 Dance
  • EActive Year 3-6 Fitness 
  • EActive Martial Arts 

Registrations for all Primary Sport are to be completed by Friday 18 June 2021. Register here.           

High School Weekly Sport Program

In Term 3 the following sport programs will be offered to High School students:

  • Years 7-10 Sydney Schools Cup Netball Competition
  • Years 7-9 Gymnastics Program 
  • Years 7-8 Cricket Training 
  • Years 7-10 Volleyball Skills Program
  • Years 7-10 Boys Futsal Competition
  • Years 7-12 Tennis Program 
  • Years 7-12 Swimming Program 
  • Years 7-12 Basketball (3 v 3 Winter Program)
  • Years 7-12 Swimming Program 
  • Years 7-12 Rugby Training Program 
  • Years 7-12 EActive Fitness Training 
  • Years 7-9 EActive Dance

Registrations for all High School Sport are to be completed by Friday 18 June 2021. Register here.                      

If you have any enquires please email Kristy Genc (Director of Sport K-12) 


Music Matters

Diana Springford – Head of Music

Mazal tov on recent student performances

Congratulations to all the Years 3-6 IP students who shared their Chamber Music performances with each other on Tuesday and Wednesday of this week. There were some very special, stylish and indeed funny, performances, and some impressive bravery as even those who were least confident stood up in front of their peers and gave it their best shot. Special mention goes to the Year 3 students, many of whom only started learning their instruments in February. These performances were a credit to students’ hard work and enthusiasm for their music making.

Thank you to our great team of instrumental tutors who are guiding the students along their music journey. Thank you to the parents who have accepted these strange noisy instruments into their homes and provided the encouragement and structure for developing practice routines that turn the noise into music. The thought, care and hard work are paying off!

Kol Hakavod to the Emanuel Big Band for their High School Assembly performance in Week 4 of Moanin’ by Bobby Timmons, conducted by Eamon Penner-Dilworth. There is a partial recording available via the Music Performances button on the Parent Portal, it is certainly worth seeing for the beautiful tone the band is producing and the smoking alto saxophone solo by Guy Rein.

Congratulations to the Senior Choir for their High School Assembly Performance this week of We are the World by Michael Jackson. This beautiful and uplifting performance was conducted by Danny Burley and accompanied by Antonio Fernandez.

Music Camp (Week 8)

Bookings for Music Camp have now closed. A detailed information letter with a packing list will be sent out to attendees next week. Parents and carers, please remember to put the Music Camp Showcase Concert in your diary for Thursday 10 June 2021, from 6.15 pm – 8.00 pm.

Show off your secret, or not so secret, talent at the Music Camp Talent Quest on Tuesday evening. Students who wish to participate should have a well-prepared act that is appropriate for Music Camp students from ages 9-18. It could be serious or funny. Students who would like to participate must register their interest with Mr Burley by the first Monday of camp. They should bring whatever gear they need and, if using a backing track, should have it fully downloaded and given to Mr Burley by next Friday.

Private Music Tuition and Infant Strings Program

Thank you to those who have already advised us of changes to private tuition and ISP enrolments for next term. The deadline for new enrolments, notification of changes or intention to discontinue for Term 3, is today. All students currently receiving private tuition and members of the K-2 Infant Strings Program will be automatically re-enrolled into tutor schedules for Term 3 along with students commencing lessons for the first time. To enrol or discontinue please visit our Music Portal Page and complete the relevant online forms. Formal discontinuation notice must be received now to avoid being committed to the full term of lessons and liable for fees.  Please contact Matilda Grieve if you have any questions.  

The schedules for Term 3, 2021 will be created at the end of term and emailed by early July.

On the  Music Portal Page, you will announcements and information about:

  • Private Music Tuition (beginning and discontinuing)
  • Ensemble and Choir membership for K-12 students
  • Infant Strings Program (ISP) for K-2
  • Performance opportunities
  • Borrowing an orchestral instrument

 You can also find fun news and updates from us on Instagram.

Music in Week 8

There will be no IP for Years 3-6 in Week 8 because of Music Camp and no Emanuel Music Ensembles will take place for the same reason. However, some private music lessons will continue as normal, because not all tutors are going to camp. Please check with your private tutor if you are in any doubt.




Claire Pech – Careers Advisor

Last week I was out at the annual Careers Advisor’s Day at Macquarie University (MQ). Apart from it looking stunning in the Autumn sun, with huge grounds that surrounded the University, it only took 30 minutes to get there from the Eastern Suburbs (a big concern for Emanuel students!).

Now more than ever MQ is having its moment in the sun, with an increase in enrolments from all over Sydney including from our School. 

Here are a few of my highlights from various speakers:

Lee-ann Norriss, Executive Director – Future Students

There are lots of new buildings on campus, that have been built during COVID times. New eateries, coffee shops, bars and a new medical and health precinct are also new. The new accommodation hub opened this year too with amazing facilities alive and well on campus. I went to visit these facilities and felt I had walked into a new hotel. Students have never had it so good!


Employability and Graduate Success, Director – Kylie Ebert

Employability facts

Higher Education is the key driver of employment and income. Australia needs job-ready graduates that need to be prepared with enhanced STEM skills and also critical thinking, creativity, communication and problem solving skills:

  • Graduates need resilience and agency more than ever before.
  • Employers are looking more broadly than ever before.
  • QS 2019 globally – data skills and resilience are now crucial.

How has COVID changed things? It has highlighted the inequalities regarding technology and resources. 20-29 year olds and 70+ year olds were the most affected by job losses.

Employability myths

  • “You can leave a job application to the last minute!” No. It needs a lot of application, time and preparation.
  • “Study and work are competing priorities for students.” No it isn’t. You can work hard on your employability whilst studying.
  • “Students are too busy for co-curricular activities.” Definitely invest in something extracurricular pursuits. Make the most of your time. 
  • “A degree is enough to get you a job.” No chance! You need to stand out.
  • “There are no jobs due to COVID.” Untrue. It is just a changed market.
  • “Employers are most interested in graduates with the highest grades.” Untrue. It is cultural fit that is more important. A.I based recruitment strategies and diversity and inclusion targets have also changed the market.
  • “Everyone is looking for a full time employment in a traditional 9-5 job.” Not at all. Many part time options are available but you have to sell yourself and stand out.

The Macquarie University ingredients – what is the secret?

  • #9 in Australia
  • Top 110 in the world
  • QS Graduate Employability Rankings 2020
  • Global MBA ranked #1 in Australia, #6 by CEO Magazine 2020
  • Connected to 300 global companies on campus and MQ Park
  • Careers and employment services, weekly newsletters, expo’s, resumes and interview career progressions etc. Professional Development programs
  • 140 different students groups
  • Mentoring and volunteering groups
  • Design thinking and pitch incubator programs
  • Industry relevant courses – work integrated learning (PACE)
  • MQSE (Macquarie Student Employment) Program – internship programs
  • MQ Entry Schemes and Programs – max of 15 combined (for most courses)
  • Academic Advantage – now up to 6 points
  • Big History Scheme – 3 points
  • Catchment Area
  • Elite Athlete – 4 points

Macquarie Leaders and Achievers Scheme

The Macquarie Leaders and Achievers Scheme is hoping to open on Tuesday 1 June 2021 and close on Friday 20 August 2021. MQ is putting on a webinar to inform students about this next Tuesday. Register here.

  • Students apply directly. Offers are released before the HSC.
  • The scheme will look at Year 11 results and an application. They are looking for a B average. Due to the COVID impact, the application has three areas to apply for, but students are only judged on two. It’s about the quality of the activities not the amount. Examples are: school captain, committee member, prefect, cadets, youth leaders, sports coach or co-ordinator, paid casual work, family carer responsibilities, being a mentor, team work skills and giving back to the community.
  • Students can now only get ONE offer in the whole process.
  • First round offers come out on Thursday 16 September 2021, with the second round on Thursday 30 September 2021.  


Dr Lyn O’Grady, a psychologist specialising in the mental health and wellbeing of young people and their parents, will explore the potential impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic on student emotional and psychological wellbeing, which may create obstacles for students facing complex career decisions and transitions.

Dr O’Grady will be delivering a presentation for parents and carers on Friday 4 June 2021. The webinars are free and are now open for registration.



… the canaries to sing

Sonia Newell – Development Officer – Alumni & Community Relations

Ride for a Cause

Aliza Waxman and Asher Waxman

You may have noticed many bike riders out and about riding along Campbell Parade, Bondi Beach last Sunday morning. What you may not have known however, is that around 1000 bikers rode around Sydney that morning, looking very dapper and distinguished as the dress code required, in this year’s Distinguished Gentleman’s Ride. Alumni siblings, Aliza Waxman (Class of 2012) and her brother Asher (Class of 2009), were amongst those riders.  Aliza says “we are so proud to be part of such a special cause which raises funds and awareness for Men’s Health. It started in Sydney in 2012 and has since become a global event raising 31 million USD to date”.  This is an event which Aliza has ridden in many times before with her father Leon Waxman, now an Emanuel grandparent. Asher started their involvement, riding on his own the first time some six years ago. He then had a five-year break whilst living overseas and now that he is back in Sydney, he rode with his sister last Sunday morning, she on her own bike for the first time!


“…and he taught the canaries to sing” 
Celebrating Jewish life in Poland before 1939

Past parent, Estelle Rozinski is passionate about Jewish life in Poland pre-WW2 and has been the instigator of many projects that celebrate these times prior to the Holocaust. Here is an extract of a press release from mid-May for her latest work which was launched at the Polish Consulate in Woollahra last week: “On the 27 August 2017 a unique exhibition celebrating the lives of the Jewish community pre 1939 premiered at the Historical Museum in the Polish town of Zdunska Wola. Sydney-based artist and curator, Estelle Rozinski, whose great- grandparents lived in this vibrant community before perishing in the Holocaust, was the architect behind this initiative. Since then, more than 1000 school children from the region have visited and interacted with this installation. This week, Rozinski once again brings focus to the vibrancy of Jewish life before the Holocaust through curating three animations. The animations, sponsored by the Consulate of the Republic of Poland, with the support of the Polish Consul,

Monika Konczyk, celebrate the diversity of Jewish life in Poland before 1939. Created by three celebrated Australian artists, Anita Lester, David Asher Brook and Steven Durbach, the animations provide easily accessible stories that convey the normalcy, fun and poignancy of everyday life. Rozinski says that, “the animations will help children assimilate normalcy into their post-Holocaust family histories. They are about pranks played on the streets of Lodz, a father teaching canaries to sing, and the story of a sister, brother and their grandfather clock”. Rozinski hopes that the animations will help debunk the stereotypes we hold of Polish Jewry, leaving us curious and wanting to know more about the shape and texture of the ordinariness of everyday life.

You may recognise two other names in this press release – Steven Durbach, a current Emanuel parent, is one of the three animators for this project as is alumnus artist David Asher Brook (Class of 1998). Some of you may recall that David and his wife Hanna inspired the amazing artwork that hangs in the stairwell in our Kleinlehrer Family LINC Building, with brushstrokes by every student and staff member here in 2014, creating an amazing artwork.

Limmud Oz 2021
A community-wide festival of Jewish ideas and culture

Sunday 13 June 2021 – Monday 14 June 2021

This event is just two weeks away. You will hear from a number of Emanuel parents past and present, including Shana Kerlander, Estelle Rozinski, Geoff Sirmai, Jayme Akstein, Sharon Berger, Shirli Kirschner and Kerri Sackville, alumni Mitch Burnie, Sean Torban, Matt Friedman, Julia Sussman, Zac Levi and Eve Altman, and staff member Oren Thaler, as they and many others in our extended community, present and/or moderate at this year’s Limmud Oz . It will be held at The Roundhouse UNSW and Moriah College. The full program and tickets can be found at limmudoz.org.au.

Private Art Gallery tour with a difference 

Wednesday 16 June 2021

We hope you will join us on the morning of Wednesday 16 June 2021 for our Gesher private tour of Salon des Refusés 2021 (the alternative Archibald and Wynne Prize selection) at the S.H. Ervin Gallery, Observatory Hill (The Rocks). This event is open to past and current parents, grandparents and alumni as well as friends. Bookings are now open.

Unlocking the Past
Stories from my Mother’s Diary

Unlocking the Past: Stories from my Mother’s Diary

Shira Sebban is a name familiar to many in our School Community.  Shira served on the School Board for 14 years, including three terms as vice-president, whilst her three sons were students at the School. She is a writer and volunteer refugee advocate as well as a volunteer guide at the Sydney Jewish Museum and is currently completing the graduate diploma in migration law at UTS with the aim of becoming a migration agent to be able to further support refugees and asylum seekers. A former journalist, Shira will be guest speaker at National Council for Jewish Women NSW Woollahra on 28 June, when she will talk about her first book Unlocking the Past: Stories from my Mother’s Diary, a series of creative non-fiction short stories about Israel in the 1950’s based on her mother’s diary which was only discovered after her passing. RSVP to: admin@ncjwnsw.org or 9363 0259.


If you have photos and/or news to share, please send to Sonia Newell

Shabbat Shalom and have a great weekend.   



Lara Fosbery – Year 12

Jacob Rose – Year 12

What is an ecosystem?

An ecosystem, by definition, is “a biological community of interacting organisms and their physical environment”. It’s the combination of biotic (living) factors, which include plants, animals, and other living organisms in conjunction with abiotic (non-living) factors that include rocks, temperature, humidity among others to create a “bubble” of life. Ecosystems can vastly range in size, with smaller ecosystems such as tide pools existing within larger ecosystems of the rock pools or the shore. 

The entire surface of our Earth is formed via a series of connected ecosystems. These connected ecosystems form biomes. A biome is a “large naturally occurring community of flora and fauna occupying a major habitat”, or simply, a large section of land such as a forest or tundra or desert. For example, the Sahara desert is made up predominantly of oasis and dune ecosystems compared to the Forest ecosystems that may include detritus (forest floor) and canopy ecosystems. 

Ecosystem survival is relatively precarious, with every factor within that ecosystem affecting all other factors (directly or indirectly) to varying degrees. For example, a reduction of sunlight may significantly reduce plant growth, limiting food supply for herbivores and habitats for a wide variety of species. Organisms that depend on that flora are either forced to adapt to the pressures placed upon it or face the possibility of death within that population. 

Biodiversity loss is always a risk when interfering in ecosystems, because of how fragile the balance of an ecosystem is. Biodiversity (the condensed form of the words “biological diversity”) refers to the variety of life on Earth – all of the organisms and the environments in which they live. We need biodiversity because the more types of organisms there are, the more likely it is that at least some of them will survive in the event of a natural disaster or change in their environment. However, humans have had a pretty negative impact on the Earth’s biodiversity – up to one million species are facing extinction because of human activity. 

In the time that humans have been on the planet, 680 vertebrate species have gone extinct, with many more classified as threatened and endangered. Humans have shown little regard for the balance of ecosystems, instead seeing all natural resources as available and exploitable for profit. Biodiversity loss is occurring at a rapidly increasing rate, and while it’s difficult to feel like your actions have a direct impact on the environment, there are things you can do to promote biodiversity in your garden or community:

  1. Don’t use chemical pesticides and herbicides – try organic ones that won’t poison animals in your garden if accidentally ingested.
  2. Incorporate native plants into your garden – these provide a home for native animals and increase biodiversity twofold – in the plant and animal kingdom.
  3. Attract pollinators – leave some water out for butterflies and bees and plant some flowers for them to pollinate and take nectar from.
  4. Reduce your red meat consumption – huge amounts of land are cleared for livestock, so reducing the red meat industry can help preserve native plants and spare the lives of animals.
  5. Contain your pets – Dogs and cats, if allowed outside unsupervised, may hunt small mammals. Outdoor cats in particular have had a devastating effect on urban wildlife, so keeping pets indoors when possible and supervising them when they’re outdoors preserves biodiversity in the areas where you live. 

We hope you feel better prepared to protect biodiversity in your community! Have a great weekend. 




World Religions

Amelie Trope

Abby Sarraf

Emanuel World Religions at Nan Tien

Our Jewish Studies class went on an excursion to the Nan Tien Buddhist Temple, located near Wollongong. This excursion was part of our Judaism and Other World Religions course, and it was only fitting that we visited this Buddhist temple to understand more about Buddhist practice and ritual.

When we first arrived, our class was greeted by Sandra, who was our tour guide for the day. Our introductory activity was a twenty minute Tai Chi lesson in the main courtyard. The purpose of this was to connect our mind with our body all through movement and meditation. We then visited one of the shrines dedicated to the Guanyin Buddha who is associated with compassion, mercy, and good deeds.

After spending fifteen minutes in this shrine, we went to the dining hall to enjoy a traditional Buddhist meal. We were given a portion of fried rice, steamed vegetables and vegetarian curry and tofu on each plate. In the Buddhist tradition, it is customary to eat lunch in silence with the intention to fully appreciate the meal and relax your mind. Following lunch, our class went on a short walk around the temple and the grounds beyond it. On the walking track, we stopped at the Gratitude Bell where each of us took a turn ringing it and thinking of something we are grateful for. At the conclusion of the walking track, we visited the temples main shrine, where we were instructed to remove our shoes and hats as a sign of respect. The shrine contained five large statues of the different Buddha traits. These were: confidence, long life, wisdom, inner beauty and peace. After discussing the different artefacts and features of the shrine, our class returned to the main entrance of the temple and crossed the bridge over to the Nan Tien Institute.

The Nan Tien Bridge signifies the connection between the largest Buddhist temple in the southern hemisphere and Australia’s first ever government accredited higher education institute with Buddhist foundations. Once we got to the institute, we looked around an art and photography exhibition produced by current students and had a short tour of the museum, while learning further about the history of the building. Upon exiting the institute, we walked around a lotus pond, similar to what the Buddha would have sat beside as he reached enlightenment. The significance of a lotus to the Buddhist religion is that it represents purity of the body, speech. and mind, relating to the 3 Acts of Goodness; say good words, do good deeds and think good thoughts. To conclude our day and connect the theme of lotuses, Sandra demonstrated how to make origami lotuses, followed by a visit from one of the temples reverends. This reverend was referred to as Venerable and she gave us some insight into her daily routine and the practices of Buddhist nuns in general. 

Our class really enjoyed this experience because it allowed us to explore a religion other than Judaism and learn more about faiths that are less familiar to us. The excursion also taught us many things about the Buddha, Buddhist followers, nuns, and the religion’s history.




The Freedom Hub

Kian Hamburger, Year 9

Creating a World of Freedom by Ending Modern Slavery

As part of our learning about עבדות, אחריות וחירות/Avdut, Achrayut, VeCheirut – Slavery, Responsibility, and Freedom, students from our class visited the Freedom Hub in Waterloo, whose motto is “Creating a World of Freedom by Ending Modern Slavery”. Below are the reflections of Kian Hamburger about our class visit and the work of the “Hub” – Rabbi Daniel Siegel

The Freedom Hub is a brilliant organisation that works to end a perhaps surprising issue within Australia – slavery.

The organisation raises money for their works intelligently, such as by having a cafe. This money is utilised well to assist “survivors”, a term that the Freedom Hub uses to describe those who have suffered from slavery in Australia.

The Hub’s ‘Survivor School,’ aids in freeing victims of slavery and enabling them to be integrated into the community again and contribute to it. For “survivors” to be integrated into the community again is justly considered by many to be insurmountable at first due to the horrible impacts slavery can cause. However, the Freedom Hub’s diligence and time to assist these “survivors”, help them every step on their journey to freedom.

Some of the aspects the organisation provides includes mentors, safety, skills and mental health workshops, and required necessities/knowledge. These offerings have no time limit in the sense that “survivors” can acquire such aid forever.

The Freedom Hub indicated that there are several modern slaveries in Australia, including forced marriage, forced labour, forced child labour, domestic servitude, trafficking, sex trafficking, and debt bondage. What the Freedom Hub does and the ideas learnt in our Freedom and Responsibility Class have a direct correlation. As we have learned, “במקום שאין אנשים השתדל להיות איש” (BeMakon SheEin Anashim Hishtadel LiHeyot Ish – In a place in which there are no upstanders, be the upstander). 

In Australia, which includes few true upstanders for those who experience slavery, the Freedom Hub exemplifies such a saying. The establishment also reflects another concept we learnt in class, פה שח (Peh Sach – The Mouth that Speaks). The Freedom Hub is always speaking up against the slavery occurring today in our country and uses its voice to support those who cannot. 

Even if we do not visit the Freedom Hub, we are still able to be an איש (Ish – Upstander) and exercise אחריות (Achrayut – Responsibility) by supporting and promoting the excellent work they do. Social media is a great way to do this, including platforms like Instagram and Facebook. We can follow the Freedom Hub on such platforms, post and share their works and information on what the organisation aims to end. In addition, we can donate to the Freedom Hub and participate in various events they host to assist their works.

We all have a responsibility to speak up against the injustice of slavery. One way we can do so is by supporting the efforts and programs of the Freedom Hub and, ultimately, the confused, fatigued, and fragile minds, spirits and beings of the many survivors of slavery today. 


Solve the climate crisis

Kyra Levin

Noa Wajsman

Be the Change
Solve the climate crisis

We went to two different places to learn about climate change and climate action: the Randwick Sustainability Hub and Adamama Urban Farm. At the Randwick Sustainability Hub, we listened to a presentation and looked at a beautiful garden that had been planted by the Randwick Council. It demonstrated techniques of how to get the best out of the soil and draw down carbon dioxide out of the air. We also learnt about the benefits of hybrid or electric cars and how car sharing could help save the environment and save lots of money! We played a few games, including one where a question was asked to the class and you had to express your opinion on it by going to one side of the room or the other.

At the Adamama Urban Farm, we listened to Mitch Burnie (the founder) explain how environmental urban farms connect to Judaism. We then walked around the farm, seeing a large pile of compost and a beehive and tried some of the vegetables – even tasting leaves! Later, we went to a room next door to the farm and made sauerkraut out of cabbage and salt. First, we chopped the cabbage into thin slices, then added salt, and then squeezed the cabbage by hand until the juices came out. Lastly, we added some spices and put them in jars to take home.

Two of the most important things we learnt over this day were:

  • How important it is to introduce biodiversity while planting vegetables, so they get all the nutrients they need to flourish. Biodiversity is planting everything mixed together instead of in straight lines of crops.
  • Education is a major factor in resolving climate change. This is because more education for students is needed about climate change as, if they are not aware, they cannot do anything about it.

Fun fact: just reducing your air conditioner by one degree is 10% better for the environment!

We thought this was a very enjoyable, unique and productive day to teach us more about being changemakers and the world we live in.

It was a wonderful experience, and we hope others get to participate and enjoy this in the future as much as we did.





Emanuel Archaeologists

Willow Gelin

Emanuel Archaeologists in Sydney

Last week, the Year 9 Archaeology Jewish Studies class went to The Rocks to learn about its history and its archaeology. Through looking at various archaeological sites, features and artefacts, we discovered how archaeology can impact history and can allow us to discover useful pieces of information. We looked at the house of George Cribb, a 19th Century butcher, and analysed some of its artefacts.

Overall, this excursion was thoroughly enjoyable and allowed us to learn a lot about archaeology and about different sites and their significance.



Salon des Refuses

Enrolments now open

Community Notices








Ruby Berkovic and Jennifer Opit

Hello Everyone,

We hope you are all well.

Mother’s Day meditation

On Tuesday morning, members of our Emanuel Community gathered in the MPH for a meditation session led by Jodie Gien @ Mindful Future Project. It was wonderful to be able to come together and thanks again to Jodie for facilitating such a beautiful session.

It was a truly relaxing and amazing event.




Emanuel P&F Family Event: Scavenger Hunt!

The Scavenger Hunt is this weekend! Book now to avoid disappointment.

It has been too long since we have been able to come together, so the P&F is organising an afternoon of excitement with a Scavenger Hunt. Save the afternoon of Sunday 30 May 2021 at a time that suits you between 12.00 pm and 5.00 pm (it will take approximately two hours to complete), for some family fun! The cost is $50.00 per family/team (between 2-6 team members) and all you need is enthusiastic participants and a mobile phone on which to download and access the free App that will allow us to play and interact with one another. You will race around Randwick answering questions and completing tasks (by car, bike or on foot – whatever you choose). You will be able to watch the progress of other teams as you race to checkpoints and complete challenges! It is sure to be heaps of fun!

When: Sunday 30 May 2021. Anytime between 12.00 pm – 5.00 pm (it will take approximately 2 hours but you can complete as little/much as you like)
Where: Locations around Randwick (you can start and finish anywhere)
How: By following instructions on a free App
Cost: $50.00 per team/family (2-6 members)
Book here 

Entertainment Books

If you are looking for great offers while out and about, there are plenty to be found in the Entertainment Book. Order here.  

P&F Meeting

Our monthly P&F Meeting will be held next week on Wednesday 2 June 2021. Our meetings are held on the first Wednesday of each month at 7.00 pm. This will be our first meeting back in the Boardroom at School since restrictions have been eased. Everyone is welcome so please join us as your support and input is valued.

Email rubykb@gmail.com if you would like to attend the meeting so we can send you the agenda.

Camping Trip #2 date change

Please note that the date of the second Camping Trip for the year has been moved to 26 November 2021 – 28 November 2021.

Weekend Brain Teaser (from last week) and answer

Question: A man pushes his car to a hotel and tells the owner he’s bankrupt. Why?
Answer: He’s playing Monopoly

Hope to see many of you on the Scavenger Hunt this weekend,

Jen and Ruby



Recipe of the Week

Each week we’ll bring you a tasty recipe passed down by Emanuel families, from the Emanuel School Community Cookbook, The Family Meal. 

From the Kitchen of Tammy Kleviansky 

Caramalised Red Onion & Lentil Dip  


150g or 3/4 cup red lentils 
2 cups boiling water 
2 cloves garlic, quartered 
1 medium (200g) potato, coarsely chopped  
1/4 cup olive oil 
2 medium brown onion, thinly sliced
1/2  tsp ground cumin
1 tsp ground coriander 
1/4 tsp sweet paprika
2 tbsp lemon juice 


Combine lentils, water, garlic, and potato in a medium saucepan and bring to the boil.
Reduce heat, simmer uncovered for about 15 minutes or until lentils soften, stirring occasionally. Then set aside.
Heat two tablespoons of olive oil in a second medium frying pan and cook the onion for about 8 minutes, or until caramalised, stirring occasionally. 
Remove two tablespoons of onion from the pan and set aside.
Add the spices to the onion pan and cook, stirring until fragrant.
Remove onion pan from heat and stir in the lemon juice.
Transfer the lentil and onion mixture into a blender.  Process with the remaining olive oil, until the dip is smooth.
Transfer to a serving dish and decorate the top with the cooked onion that has been set aside.  Serve with toasted pide or pita crisps, if desired.

Serves 8-12 

You can order the Emanuel School Community Cookbook, The Family Meal by contacting rubykb@gmail.com