May 2021 Newsletter

In today’s newsletter we have the following:

  • News from the Principal and DP’s
  • Team leader snippets
  • The Arts – look here for some awesome interviews 
  • ANZAC speech competition
  • Ski Team news
  • Upcoming Events for May
  • Student Congratulations (out of school events)
  • Psychologist and Counsellor Spot
  • PTA News
  • ANI Sports-Pro Programme
  • House Points Update
  • Facebook
  • Community News 

NEWS from the PRINCIPAL and DPs 

Dear Parents and Caregivers 

Tēnā koutou i ngā whānau o te kura.

Welcome back to a new term – we know our students will be returning feeling refreshed and excited about the weeks ahead. 

There was quite a bit happening at school over the break. Teachers had planning meetings and have organised some exciting activities for the term. Details of these activities are in each team’s newsletter which are available HERE. There was also quite an exciting start to our new building project as mentioned at the end of last term. Click HERE to watch a 45 second video explaining what’s going on.

At the end of Term 1 assembly we shared with students a message about moods – particularly putting the brain into a good mood ! It was quite relevant not only for the holiday period but also for the term ahead. Enjoy! 

Put your brain in a good mood

What gets your brain fired up?  Believe it or not, a good mood.

When you’re in a good mood, your brain is more sensitive to new ideas and more creative.

The opposite is also true.  A bad mood limits our brain to what we already know, the tried and the true, the logical and obvious.

When we’re in a good mood, we feel safe and secure.  We’re more willing to take risks.

When we’re in a bad mood, we stick with what we know.

How can we make sure we are in a good mood – most of the time?  First of all, we need to find ways to increase our happiness.  There are four sure-fire ways to make us happier: a daily gratitude practice, a daily mindfulness practice, regular exercise and a good night’s sleep.

Gratitude trains the brain to focus on the positive so we filter out negative thoughts.

Mindfulness teaches the brain to be calm and focused, giving our brain time and space for new thoughts and ideas.  Take some time to be alone, with all devices switched off, spending quiet time.

Exercise lowers stress levels, increasing feel-good neurochemicals like dopamine.  This lowers anxiety and improves our good mood.

A good night’s rest increases energy levels, giving us the ability to meet challenges.  When we sleep, the brain has time to find all sorts of hidden connections between ideas.

Gratitude, mindfulness, exercise and sleep are essential for the good mood that leads to peak performance.  When school or life in general gets complicated, concentrate on these to get your brain fit and ready to deal with problems.

Team Leader snippets

A quick update from each of the team leaders on what’s ahead for Term 2. 

The Arts Interviews

For the Year 8 students, the first term saw an exploration of filmmaking through TV interviews. They began this process by observing and analysing the key elements of an interview, such as open-ended questions, a range of camera angles, clear audio, and engaging music. Students could then choose whether to interview themselves or roleplay as celebrities (and in some cases their teachers). By combining visual arts and drama, the students developed new technical skills while nurturing their creativity. The end result was a variety of creative, engaging, and humorous interviews. Here are some of our favourites: 

ANZAC Day Speeches 

ANI was invited to participate in the annual Mt Eden Schools ANZAC speech competition held at the Mt Eden War Memorial Hall on Saturday 24th April. There was quite a lot of interest from both our Year 7 and 8 students who worked hard researching and preparing in order to take part. There was a high calibre of entries which made it difficult for us to narrow it down to the five successful competitors – which we thought was an awesome problem to have.

The successful students worked further on their speeches during the first week of the holidays, giving up their own time to practice, meet with teachers on zoom and get ready for the event. On the evening of the competition the students spoke with confidence and pride.

Our successful students were:

  • Esther, Room 6 – Spoke about the importance of recognising all the ANZACs, especially those that are not often talked about
  • Gabrielle, Room 13 – Spoke about the meaning behind celebrating Anzac Day and the importance of remembering
  • Sophie, Room 14 – Spoke about the symbolism and values of the ANZACs and ANZAC Day.
  • Pranvi, Room 15 – Spoke about heroism and recognising the sacrifices the ANZAC soldiers gave
  • Sarah, Room 27 – Gave insights into an ANZAC soldiers life

A huge congratulations to Sarah who came in first place and to Gabrielle who was our runner up. Both of these students went on to present their speech at the Mt Eden ANZAC parade on Sunday the 25th and we are so proud of them!

A second huge congratulations to all of our students who took part, we were impressed with your enthusiasm, dedication and respect for this event.

Kia ngatahi ai te tu

E pakari ai te tuara

Together we are Strong

Jill Farquharson – Principal

Bryce Mills and Shane Devery – Deputy Principals


Be on the lookout for some detailed information regarding the upcoming North Island Ski Championship this term, so your child can put their name forward to trial for the school training team.  Trials will be taking place on Monday 28 June and if successful your child will be asked to be part of a school team to attend the NIPS competition beginning on Monday 13 September.  This is an opportunity for those students who already know how to ski but want to add an element of racing to their skill set.


Put these dates in your diary so you don’t miss a beat:

Monday 3 – Term 2 begins; Last day for Knowledge-athon money in order to be included in prizegiving draw

Monday 3 – Friday 14 – Year 8 Girls’ Self Defence Programme

Monday 3 – Friday 21 – Dental van onsite at ANI

Thursday 6 – ESOL Trip to Art Gallery

Monday 10 – PTA Knowledge-Athon Prizegiving; PTA Meeting at 7.00pm

Tuesday 11 – Boys Central Zone Futsal at AUT; EGGS Open Evening

Thursday 13 – Girls Central Zone Futsal at AUT

Monday 17 – Thursday 20 – Year 7 EOTC (Kauri Team)

Monday 17 – Friday 21 – Mufti Week

Wednesday 19 – Board of Trustees Meeting at 6.00pm

Monday 24 – Sunday 30 – Samoan Language Week

Tuesday 25 – Central Zone Year 7 Girls Football at Seddon Park

Tuesday 25 – Saturday 29 – International Language Week

Wednesday 26 – NYLD at Vodafone Events Centre

Thursday 27 – Year 8 HPV #1; Central Zone Year 8 Girls Football at Seddon Park


The following students who received a Principal’s award in April were:

  • Thomas (Room 9) for showing tolerance and understanding – a principled learner.
  • Advika (Room 28) for outstanding work in her inquiry around the theme ‘Who We Are’ and showing the IB learner profile of being a balanced and reflective learner.
  • Jayna (Room 29) for demonstrating high levels of student agency in your letter about uniforms at ANI.
  • Carys (Room 29) for demonstrating high levels of student agency in your letter about uniforms at ANI.

Well done to all of you.


Our focus of this newsletter is on extra-curricular activities. How much is too much? Structured after-school activities such as art classes, tutoring, music and sport can be enriching, however an over-extended timetable can result in stress and fatigue. Getting the balance right can be difficult for parents so read on for ideas to create a healthy balance. 

Parents have to make ongoing decisions about what activities to sign their child up for. There are many benefits to after-school activities including exposure to new things, social interaction, building skills, and increasing self-confidence.. In making these decisions it’s important to weigh up cost, time commitment, and potential pressure. A child with an over-extended timetable can experience excess stress, fatigue and lower school achievement. Sometimes, this can manifest physically in headaches, anxiety and irritability. 

Factor in downtime

It’s important to remember that a typical school week is busy and stimulating. Children typically experience less unstructured free time now than in the past. Whatever timetable your child has, ensure unstructured time is factored in and that there’s a routine for winding down after school. 

Avoid comparisons

It’s easy to be competitive in today’s environment. We often value being busy and think a full timetable will give our child an extra edge, ensuring they keep up or stand out with their peers. Children respond differently to their environments so think about how challenging they find school and other commitments and avoid pressuring them into activities they really aren’t interested in. 

Let them lead

Ensure your child has some say in the matter. Let them approach you for ideas and then evaluate the options together. Ask your child why they have chosen this option and likewise, explain your thoughts. Discuss what you want to get out of each activity. For example, is it to get fitter, try something new or build social skills? 

Check in

Children may be reluctant to share when things aren’t going well – or they may not even be aware of it. If you have concerns that your child is taking on too much, ask them directly. Their teacher can also be a great resource. Changes in energy, attitude and behaviour at school could be indications that they’re overwhelmed. 

Finally, remember the fun factor and ensure their timetable works for you. As important as learning new skills are, it’s enjoyment that helps a child feel confident, try harder and retain information. Your wellbeing is important here too. You’ll be paying, driving and following up with these activities and if the plate is too full, nobody in the family benefits.

If you’re wondering if your child’s timetable is stretching them too thinly, ask yourself the following questions: Can they still do their homework? Do they have time to be with friends outside school? Are they spending time with family? Are they getting 9+hours of sleep? If you answer no to one or more of these questions, it’s recommended to start there.

ASK (Advice, Support, Kindness) is a helpful email for parents to contact us (Gina Speedy – School Counsellor and Robyn Stead – Educational Psychologist) with questions about raising our young adolescents of ANI.  

How it works…

  • Send your questions or queries to
  • We will select common questions to answer here in our newsletter column
  • All emails will be treated as confidential and identifying information will be removed in answers. 

Gina Speedy & Robyn Stead 

School Counsellor and Educational Psychologist



Don’t forget this Monday (3 May) is the last day to hand in your Knowledge-Athon money to be included in the prize draw being held on Monday 10 May.

PTA Meeting

Our next PTA meeting is Monday 10 May at 7.00pm in the Library – all welcome.

Julie Rope – PTA Chairperson


We are immensely proud of the ANI Sports-Pro Programme. This sports academy is multi-faceted and meets the needs of a wide range of students. Topics and lessons range from high-performance sport and nutrition, to working with learners who find learning challenging. This programme digs beneath the surface and looks at the various components of sport. Have a look at the website dedicated to this programme HERE.  

For more information, contact Mr Carlos on


Congratulations to Jamie, Year 8 – who was awarded the Rookie lifeguard of the year at Whangamata’s Surf Life Saving Club in early April.  Jamie was one of the youngest in a group of 12-14 year old rookies but the instructors said his energy really made this year’s group gel.




Congratulations to Kriv, Year 7, who is achieving outstanding results in cricket:

Hawkes Bay Invitation Team 2020 Playing Grade Up Year 7 “Most Valuable Player”  (Venue Hastings & Napier)

North Shore Cricket Club -2021 Junior World Series Awarded : “Most Valuable Player”  

North Shore Cricket Club -2021 Junior World Series Awarded : “5 Wicket Bag” (Bowling)

Cornwall Cricket Club 2020/21 Under 11 Awarded: “The Batsman Of The Year” 

Cornwall Cricket Club 2020/21 Under 11 Awarded : “5 Wicket Bag” V/S Parnell Cricket Club (Bowling)  

 Cornwall Cricket Club 2020/21 Under 11 Awarded : “ 50 Runs Trophy” 

– Scored 63 V/S Auckland University Cricket Club 

– Scored 54 V/S North Shore Cricket Club 

– Scored 50 V/S Cornwall Cricket Club 

– Scored 54 V/S North Shore Cricket Club  

Congratulations to Nishka, Room 20, who is a finalist in the ASB Big Little Ideas contest.  The links below are to her idea submission and the presentation in front of the judges which was featured on “The Project” TV programme.  The winner will be announced later today (Friday 30th April). 

Scarf Idea:

Button Jewellery Idea :

Macrame Idea:

TV Presentation:


Whenua is out in front at the beginning of Term 2 – with all three other houses very close behind.


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