If you think in terms of a year, plant a seed; if in terms of ten years, plant trees; if in terms of 100 years, teach the people. Confucius
100 years ago, movies were black-and-white, silent, and 16 frames a second. So 100 years from now, what are they going to be? Peter Jackson
What a privilege it is to be at The Ridge during the centenary year! Term 1 has proven to be even busier and more fun as we kick off this special year. And as we finish Term 1 of the centenary year, it seems like a good time to reflect both on where we’ve come from and where we’re going.
Looking back 100 years ago, 1919, soon after the end of World War I, was an interesting year:
- In June, the Treaty of Versailles was signed, formally ending World War I
- The League of Nations (the precursor to the United Nations) was founded in Paris in January of 1919
- The prestigious Bentley motor company was founded in England. Similarly, the world’s oldest running airline, still running under its original name, KLM, was formed.
- Women’s Rights took a giant leap forward with many countries (Netherlands, Luxembourg, Germany) giving women the right to vote
- Jan Smuts became the second Prime Minster of South Africa, shortly after the first Prime Minister, Louis Botha, died while in office.
Some remarkable people were born in 1919:
- Sir Edmund Hillary, one of the first two men to summit Mount Everest
- D. Salinger, author of the classic novel ‘The Catcher in the Rye’
- Isaac Asimov, arguably the most famous Science Fiction writer of all time (and my personal favourite author)
- Nat King Cole, singer of ‘Unforgettable’ and other great songs
- Eva Perón, wife of Argentine President Juan Perón and subject of the well-known play ‘Evita’.
And, of course, the ‘birth’ of The Ridge School. It should come as no surprise that this issue of Horizons is very much centenary focused.
Please look out for the wonderful photographs and videos from the Centenary launch on 26th January and from the spectacular Centenary Celebration Dinner on the 30th March. A big thank you to Angie Chapman and her team for kicking off and continuing the celebration of our centenary year in style! That evening also saw the unveiling ‘The Ridge Centenary Sculpture’ by Marco Cianfanelli, and which stands as testament to the many families here today and the foundation of the next 100 years.
And because this 100th year we are looking forward, as much as we are looking back, Mandy Herold has included a wonderful article, with photos by Tessa Graham, about our amazing new Junior Prep building.
As for the rest of this term’s Horizons, we have our usual Headmaster’s Report, new staff introductions, cultural and sports reports and feedback from the term’s Parent Association events – the Lumo Dance and the Soapbox Derby.
Enjoy the read!
What a special privilege it was for Lucinda and I to be part of the splendid Centenary Celebration Party held here on The Ridge campus on the evening of 30th March. A gala occasion that served to put the cherry on the top of what has been a memorable and hugely enjoyable first three months of our school’s eagerly awaited 100th year birthday milestone.
From the carefully choreographed first day back celebrations and the enthusiastically energized Centenary Ridge Family Launch on Saturday 26th January, to the issuing of Right Stuff Passports to every boy, the bringing to life of our Ridge history through fascinating displays and assemblies, and then the fun and enjoyment achieved through the Care-to-Learn programme and the Soapbox Derby, we could not have asked for a better start to our Centenary Year celebrations.
Add to this the opening of our new Ridge Junior Primary classroom block, the finishing touches that have been put to the school gardens and the play-ground areas, and in recent weeks, the work done to improve the welcome concourse adjacent to the drop off area in the upper car park, and we certainly have much to give thanks for and to appreciate.
As part of the official welcome on Saturday 30th March a special time was set aside for the unveiling of the stunning new Marco Cianfanelli sculpture that most of you would have seen standing, as it now does, in pride of place alongside our Nicolson Hall.
We recognise that a number of mums and dads were unable to attend the party on that evening and so it is appropriate to give some background to the presentation and the erecting of this truly beautiful piece of art work.
Marco Cianfanelli is a highly gifted, world-renowned, and globally acknowledged public space sculptor and artist whose works of art have received loud acclaim both locally and as far afield as the cities of New York, Atlanta, Washington DC, Beijing, and Abu Dhabi.
His works include a celebrated twenty-year catalogue of prized sculptures. Amongst which are:
- the remarkable and eye-catching monument, Release – an iconic sculpture at the Nelson Mandela capture site near Howick in KZN;
- the Sharpeville Memorial in Sharpeville, Johannesburg;
- Threshold, a sculpture at the Netcare Christiaan Barnard Memorial Hospital in Cape Town;
- the Knowledge Structure work of art at the Texas Tech Public Art Collection;
- the remarkable Shadow Boxing sculpture in downtown Johannesburg; and the list goes on.
Amongst an impressive array of awards, Marco can lay claim to: the Absa Atelier Merit Award; the Beeld Plus Aartvark Award for Innovative Work; and the Nirox Foundation residency award.
In his capacity as a world-renowned sculptor, current Ridge parent and, in particular, a Ridgean old boy, Marco unveiled for us his most recent work and his signature contribution to our Ridge Centenary celebrations. Marco also took some time to share some of his thinking behind the vision that inspired the concept that has resulted in the creation of this magnificent sculpture. He will be giving a similar but simpler presentation to an assembly of boys at the beginning of next term.
So, what does the 2nd Term hold in store for us on the Centenary front that will serve to build on all that the 1st Term has paved the way for?
- The Mothers’ Day Celebration Lunch on Saturday 8th May
- The official unveiling of the Centenary Garden
- The Rugby Festival in the weekend just prior to the half-term break in late June
- The Old Boys’ Dinner on the 26th July
- Founder Day on Saturday 27th July
- Janet van der Poel’s whole school drama production, A Westcliff Story
Needless-to-say none of what we have already experienced and so enjoyed would have been possible were it not for the extraordinarily selfless work done by Angie Chapman and her dedicated Centenary Committee. After what has been a wonderfully engaging and all-embracing first three months of Centenary-related activities it is appropriate to congratulate and sincerely thank Angie and her team; and to wish them continued strength as we look forward to all that they have lined up for us all in the months ahead.
In closing may I take this opportunity to wish all members of The Ridge School family a wonderful April holiday, God’s richest blessings and plenty of happy memory-making moments with you loved ones.
“Education is the great engine of personal development. It is through education that the daughter of a peasant can become a doctor, that the son of a mineworker can become the head of the mine and that a child of farm workers can become the president of a great nation. It is what we make out of what we have, not what we are given, that separates one person from another.” Nelson Mandela
This is one of my favourite quotes and reading it gives me inspiration and motivation to teach children and know that I have the power and gift to help children to reach their full potential in life.
Looking back to when I was a young girl and teaching my teddy bears and anything that wanted to be taught, I realised that I was born to be a teacher. A teacher has a passion to educate and enlighten young minds and I am intrinsically passionate about doing just that.
I started my teaching journey 11 years ago and during my time I have taught from the ages of 3 to 9 years of age. I have a double honours degree in Early Childhood Development and Psychology and Inclusive Education. I have taught in London at various schools, St Stithians Junior Preparatory and moved onto a very special Remedial School in Bryanston. Whilst growing my family I worked at St Peter’s Girls Junior Preparatory as their Remedial Therapist.
I have the most loving and caring family with a husband who supports my Journey and passion of moulding young minds. I have two beautiful children, Emma, who is nearly 3 years old and Harrison, who is 18 months.
My journey has bought me to The Ridge and I am extremely excited and ready to get involved with the fantastic boys and create new educational pathways into the future.
Hi, I am Rebecca Emanuel. I am newly qualified with my Bachelor of Education but have a few years of teaching experience under my belt. I’m originally from Durban, but moved to Johannesburg for a change of pace and to find new adventures. I am a creative person and love using my creativity to teach children.
For me, teaching is a whirlwind of creative chaos and that empowers little humans to master the unknown. I thrive in seeing little childrens’ eyes ignite when doing the “impossible”! I strive to create a safe and comfortable environment, so that each child is heard as they grow in self-confidence.
I believe that school can be the best part of life as one comes to cherish one’s own talents and celebrate victories. Here, at The Ridge, I have the privilege of equipping boys with the tools to do just that. I am passionate about teaching and can’t wait to share that with everyone!
People often say to me “I can’t believe you’re a teacher! Isn’t it difficult dealing with kids all day” and my answer is simply the kids is what makes my job easy and enjoyable. Kids are always willing to listen, learn and are full of energy and it is through this that you, as an educator, are able to unlock their full potential.
My main goal as a teacher is to find and develop that special ‘something’ in each and every learner to make them feel that they are not only valuable but are able to one day make a difference in the world.
I knew at the age of 17 that I wanted to become a teacher after completing a job shadowing programme as part of the Life Orientation programme. I attended a school where I observed, taught and coached for two weeks and I immediately knew this was my calling.
I come from a big family being one of four children (three boys and one girl) and I am the second oldest. I grew up in Honeydew, Johannesburg and have lived there my whole life. I attended Trinityhouse Preparatory and High School in Randpark Ridge went on to study my Bachelor of Education Intermediate and Senior Phase degree through Wits and UNISA.
I started my teaching career at Pridwin Preparatory School where I was an Intern in the Senior Primary and went on to complete my studies. I learnt a lot about myself, my profession and boys’ education during my time at Pridwin. I now begin this journey at The Ridge and look forward to the growth, development and fun-filled experiences that I will encounter during my time here.
My name is Susan (Sioux) Hughes. While Cape Town born, I have spent the last twenty years living and teaching in different countries. My husband, James, works in Petro-Chem Construction and is fortunate to travel extensively for work. I am a proud mother of three children, John, Cat and Dan, who, being of a similar age, are navigating many of the issues that we deal with daily in Grade 6 and 7. Homework, schedules, lightning alarms and socials are the main topics around the dinner table.
I love learning. I read extensively and enjoy a variety of movie genres. I spend many hours gardening and travel as often as I can.
I have been privileged to work in many different school systems as I accompanied my husband on ex-pat assignments. The changes in education worldwide are exciting and there is so much opportunity for innovation and creativity. I have wanted to be part of the excellent teaching team at The Ridge since coming here the first time as a locum a few years ago.
I believe that teaching and raising our children are one the same. Learning doesn’t end outside the classroom (some suggest it starts there) and the need for opportunities to be challenged and stretched in childhood will develop thinkers and leaders. We are so privileged to work together as a community to prepare our children to take over our world.
Over the years, I have often wondered why I am a teacher. There are a few reasons, but one that sticks out the most for me is that I enjoy working with people. My name is Phumulani Mnculwane, Head of Junior Prep Sport. I am originally from Mooi River, kwaZulu Natal, where parents still reside. I have two sisters, three nephews and one niece. My schooling started off at Mooi River Primary School and then Estcourt High School.
I moved to Pretoria in 2009 to study Sport Science at the University of Pretoria, and made Pretoria my home for 10 years. In 2014 my teaching journey officially began as an intern at Waterkloof House Preparatory School, with the 3 years prior to that being a Sports Coach. My experiences at WHPS prepared me for The Ridge School.
As a young boy growing up in Mooi River opportunities were limited, but I made most of my opportunities at school. My participation in sport at a junior Prep level is where I discovered my love and passion for sport. I believe children should be given the time to participate in all sport without pressure and they will find their niche. My motto is to do things not because they are hard or easy, but for the enjoyment of doing them.
“To live without my music, would be impossible to do. For in these times of trouble, my music sees me through” (John Miles, 1976).
These lyrics from the hit single “Music” perfectly sum up my life. From the age of four, when I had my first piano lesson, my life has been filled with music: Performing, singing, composing, conducting, arranging and, for the last 28 years, teaching music. I studied at Tuks and have just completed my M.Mus.
Growing up on a farm near Dundee, I spent an idyllic childhood riding horses, milking cows and baling hay. We had no electricity until I was twelve, so evenings were spent singing and listening to the wireless. We went to bed by candlelight and bathed in front of the coal stove in the winter (so I am good at load-shedding)!
My daughter is studying culinary arts and my son is a music student at St John’s College. We are a musical family and enjoy following the traditions of our German heritage. My husband is a banker and we live in Alberton, where, in my spare time, I grow vegetables and roses, read books, solve Sudoku puzzles and play the piano. I have two furry canine angels called Chocolate and Cocoa.
Every person has a longing to be significant, make a contribution and to be part of something noble and purposeful. I was curious and hungry for knowledge at a young age and teaching was always a dream of mine. Once I started teaching, I realised that this is my passion and watching young children develop to their best, true self is my way of paying it forward to the greater good of society.
I am a widow with two grown children (a daughter and a son), grandmother of two grandsons and I am currently raising my late brother’s two children.
I am a devoted catechist working predominately in the catechetical division, teaching First Holy Communion and Baptism in the Catholic Church. As a member of FIDE (an international chess organisation) coaching chess is also a passion of mine. I am also an ardent member of LIASA and ADLIB for school teacher librarians. I enjoy reading and sharing indigenous knowledge through storytelling and drama. I am very passionate about teaching children and helping them overcome their learning difficulties. I am determined to give every child my full attention.
I started working in the corporate world as a debtors and creditors clerk for Voltex Electrical Company and moved on to administer the pension payroll for Murray & Roberts.
In 1999, I joined St Peters School as a debtors and creditors clerk whilst pursuing my studies in Theology. A year later I moved into the library where I tackled library tasks with energy and meticulous attention to detail. My interest and enthusiasm led me to pursue studies in Information Science and I obtained my diploma in NDLIS and my Honours degree in B.Inf Science. Over the years, I have taught IsiZulu, conversational IsiZulu, Media and chess in a boy-friendly engaging fashion aimed to support the cognitive, creative, critical thinking and social development.
Now, at The Ridge, I am involved in chess, teaching Grade 7 Media and offer valuable advice and motivation to budding readers in order to enhance and nurture their love of reading.
Centenary Launch 26 January 2019
On a glorious summer morning on 26 January, The Ridge School officially launched the Centenary Year. Boys, parents, staff and former members of staff gathered in the main car park to honour the school in its Centenary Year. The ceremony started with The Ridge’s oldest Old Boy, Dr Des Sonnenfeld, lighting the centenary candle. Former Headmaster, Paul Channon, then delivered a speech that spoke to the moment and inspired our boys to continue the great work the Ridge has done over the years. We were also privileged to watch and listen to the wonderful Ridge Centenary Medley which was expertly arranged by by Janet Fox and Justin Wardle. Ridgie then made an appearance and led the school in his famous dance to the Ridgie beat. A few moments after the dance we were all delightfully surprised by the arrival of a stunt plane that dazzled the crowds with its high-speed manoeuvres. Ridgie then led the school parade along Woolston Road, where the boys, parents, staff, siblings and old boys walked and danced along Woolston. An wonderful beginning to a year that has thus enriched all those who have been involved.
Centenary Celebration Dinner 30 March 2019
The Ridge School’s Centenary Celebration took place on a perfect, warm evening oin the 30th March. The evening not only celebrated the important milestone of the school’s 100th birthday, but ensured that in doing so we uplifted the lives of those less fortunate too. The spectacular evening began with the unveiling of the incredible Centenary Sculpture done by Marco Cianfanelli. This was followed by a wonderful time in the transformed Channon Anniversary and Wyborn quads, where everyone was treated to delicious food, great conversation and pure admiration for how beautiful the quads looked. The auction soon followed and we were all completely overwhelmed by the generosity of spirit that was at work during this entire time. The evening was rounded off by a superb and energetic performance of the band GoodLuck, and dancing the proverbial ‘night away’ by the guests. The whole evening allowed the Ridge community to celebrate all that is positive and uplifting and invigorating about our school and our country. The auction raised over R1.6 million to build a junior primary at Salvazione School, which is an incredibly fitting legacy to leave during our school’s centenary year.
The Ridge School Centenary from a Grade 7 boys’ perspectives
As you know it is the Ridge Schools Centenary year this year and I am one of the privileged boys to take part in this milestone. Leading into the April Holidays there has been lots of excitement about what has happened and what is to come in this momentous year. There has already been two big celebrations including a Centenary parade, where the introduction of the schools brand new junior prep was opened, and the Centenary Cocktail party where Angie Chapman, Karen Short and their teams produced a wonderful night. In the lead up to the Centenary Celebration dinner construction outside the Nicolson Hall took place in order to unveil the Centenary sculpture which took the shape of a tree with every boy and staff member’s surnames are placed.
In the eyes of a Grade 7 learner, the boys have really enjoyed the experience of all these occasions and we can’t wait to enjoy the rest of the year as Ridge boys. The school has introduced Centenary rugby and football kits that the first teams of these sports will wear in matches. The school has taken the mindset of ‘giving’ this year which has led to the introduction of the Ridge Community Service Passport. In this passport each boy will have to have one hundred minutes of service by the end of the year and this will be shown by the stamps in their passports given to them by their teachers. For me this has been as great idea as I have really enjoyed taking part in helping the community in many ways.
So far this year has been the best one yet out of my eight years at the Ridge and can’t wait to see what 2019 has in store for us.
This year the Ridge turned 100 years old, and there has been no shortage of celebrations to mark this huge occasion. I am one of the privileged Grade 7 pupils that get to take part in this significant year for the school. Over the course of this first term we’ve had many celebrations to begin the centenary year:
To begin, we held a parade in the main car park of the school. In attendance was the former Headmaster, Paul Channon, who spoke to the boys, along with current Headmaster, Richard Stanley, and chairman James Clucas. I enjoyed this event because I played in my school Jazz Band to open the occasion, and got to lead the school march with my Grade 7 peers.
In March preparations for the Centenary Cocktail Party took place. This saw the reconstruction of the front area of the Nicolson hall, as well as the tree sculpture that ordains the front of the school.
I have really enjoyed playing a part in the betterment of my school and community. With the introduction of the community service passports given to the boys, the school is showing how much they want to reach out for the surrounding communities. It’s obvious to see how the mood in the school has shifted, with every boy wanting to get involved. With April holidays now coming up, I am very excited to see what the second term will hold in store.
The Ridge School Centenary from a Grade 6 boys’ perspectives
This year it is the Ridge’s Centenary. We knew it was coming since last year’s Founders Day when they introduced Ridgie the Right Stuff. On the first day of school, as I drove through the gates with balloons and people giving out stickers with our new logo, I could tell this was going to be a big year! The Ridgie dance was playing loudly and people were taking photos all over the place. As happy and exciting as this year is, there is also a lot more pressure on those of us in the school bands because of the many functions to play for.
The big day arrived, it was the official Centenary launch on Saturday 26 January. We sat on a massive stage and we didn’t know what we were in for. We listened to interesting speeches, the orchestra played the Centenary Medley, we danced with Ridgie and then sat down. Then, as the song was still playing, I suddenly saw and heard the massive sound of an airplane propeller. There was a stunt aircraft above us! The plane swooped down towards the trees – nearly touching them and made an impressive vertical loop before proceeding to repeat the loops over and over. What an amazing surprise!
We then went parading through the neighbourhood with our new Ridge flags. The day was truly incredible! The effort that went into it was amazing. I look forward to the next part of our Centenary year!
As a Grade 6 learner I’ve rather liked the centenary year so far and by a quick survey in my class I’ve determined most of my peers agree.
The centenary year has to date included tons of cool stuff. The event to top all events was the centenary parade in which a dad performed a trick which topped all tricks – which was flying a stunt plane to the Star Wars music. He flew really high, he did barrel rolls, loop-de-loops and a bunch of other stuff. Spectacular!
Another cool thing is our school mascot Ridgie. He’s a bald eagle who is very good at dancing. An amazing thing to add is the choir, Mrs Fox and the rest of the music staff who have worked on our great centenary medley.
The entire school was also given an amazing Centenary badge to pin onto our blazer lapels. The badge is really cool and the whole design is a stunning work of art.
My peers in Grade 6, myself included, cannot wait to see what the rest of the Centenary year has in store for us.
The Grade 1-3 staff and boys were incredibly blessed to move into our brand-new home as the 2019 school year started on 16 January. The footprint of the old building didn’t limit the vision of the architects as they took full advantage of every square inch available to them. The new building now houses 9 classrooms, a library, an ICT/coding space, a multi-purpose classroom/Imagination station, a meeting room (home to the TCL Saturday morning training classes), a kitchen area for staff, adult and boys’ bathrooms on both floors, a revamped Aftercare/Curiosity Cave and offices for Mrs Zuke and myself.
The building is characterised by the natural light flooding through the glass in the high ceilings and sky lights; fresh air moving through the corridors from the outdoor balconies; and the double volume expanse really enhance the flexible learning spaces and makes everything bright and energising.
A big highlight for everyone has been the new KCSA furniture from Germany. The ergonomic, movement absorbing chairs and movable tables have really taken our teaching and learning to new heights. The colours add a child friendly and bright dynamic to a very stylish space. The individual tables are easy to manoeuvre by pushing on the wheels and the staff and boys are having fun trialling all the different ways to set them up. The puzzle tables are excellent for working with small groups, playing games and doing artwork. The different size chairs and tables mean that each boy is sitting at his correct height. We also love using the hokki/wobble stools which ensure that we are working our core muscles without even realising it.
The much anticipated tubular slide from the second floor to the Grade 1 playground area will be arriving in the next few weeks and will round off the trio of playful equipment with the fireman’s pole and cargo nets.
The whole process of designing and building the new Junior Prep building has been a once in a lifetime opportunity. From watching the demolition of the previous building in February 2018 (from the comfort of our temporary village), to doing site visits, to now enjoying the custom-built, super functional, little boy friendly, flexible 21st centenary learning space, has been staggering and incredible. There are no words to adequately express our gratitude to Mr Stanley, Mrs Dippenaar, James Thomas, the Finance Committee and the Board of Governors and Trustees; as well as Patrick Levick, and Emma Snaddon (LYT Architects), the Contractor, LV Projectors cc, all their subcontractors.
PLAY I CONNECT I BELONG
We, at The Ridge, believe intrinsically that playing music is one of the most wonderful gifts and pleasures one can ever be involved with. Over the years I have thought about this a great deal, and I believe more than ever, that music is essential to human well-being. I recently came across this quote from Emory University in the US:
“Learning to play an instrument, I believe will, at some point keep cognitive decline at bay later on.”
I have no proof of this, but when I think of the joy music has given me, and the musicians I have come across of all ages, music provides something very special. I believe it matters not at all if one pursues music into adulthood, learning music as part of one’s development just gives one another dimension.
In the light of this, we would like to say how delighted and proud we have been with the various performances we have experienced over the past couple of weeks. Our Junior Music assemblies have been utterly delightful and are an essential part of the musical journey at The Ridge! Our Senior Music Soiree was an evening of pure joy, passion, energy and extraordinary musicianship. The soloists acquitted themselves extremely well, and the standard of performance was outstanding. Some of our bands performed as well, and we were blown away with these performances. The concert began with the Grade 5 Marimba Band. Wow!! They were fabulous! The Concert Band, Jazz Band and Senior Orchestra were unbelievably impressive and the evening ended with the Senior Marimba Band giving one of their legendary performances. I would like to share some of the feedback from one of our parents:
“I just wanted to send a note to say thank you so much for the most wonderful music evening on Thursday evening. I left the hall feeling so full of joy and pride!
Those of us who were fortunate to be at the spectacular Centenary Celebration on the evening of Saturday 30 March will agree that it was a night to remember on every level. Of course a highlight had to be the performance of Pendo Masote (a Ridge old boy, now studying violin overseas) at the unveiling of the Marco Cianfanelli sculpture.
“There are some incredibly talented young musicians at The Ridge – wow! Pendo’s performance on Saturday night was something out of this world!” This comment from a parent says it all!
Several of our Grade 7 boys have been involved in music scholarship auditions for their senior schools. We are immensely proud of all of these boys. Whether they win scholarships or not, we pay tribute to them, acknowledging how hard they have worked, and thanking them for the enormous musical contribution they have made, and continue to make at The Ridge.
“Some people think music education is a privilege, but I think it’s essential to being human.” Jewel
Janet Fox van der Poel
Celebrating The Boy Artist for The Ridge Centenary
The prospect of their art being auctioned to raise funds for the upgrade of the Salvazione school filled our boys with intrigue and excitement. What great timing, as our younger lads have just moved into their new Junior Preparatory building! For the last few weeks our art classes from Grade 0 through to 7 have been designing, painting, collaging, drawing and printing many wonderful creations. Each class per Grade created a collaborative stand-alone art work, so that every Ridge boy was represented at the Centenary Celebration Auction. It was especially rewarding for the boys to see how professional their work looked when framed and mounted. The boys’ generosity in this process has engendered a wonderful spirit of giving through their time and creativity. The Art department raised an incredible R170 000 through these wonderful pieces. This confirms the special place that art fills in the development of each boy’s creative capacity.
COLOUR BURST (acrylic paint on balsa wood)
These beautifully laser cut discs were joyously painted in acrylics by each boy in the class, adding up to a spectacular exploration and explosion of colour and pattern.
KLIMT MASTER PIECES (acrylic paint on paper)
These paintings were made after two famous pieces by Gustav Klimt from the early 1900’s, namely The Kiss and The Tree of Life. Boys each received a portion of the painting to replicate, working collaboratively in order to line up the various sections of the paintings.
BUGS AND BEETLES (card, acrylic paint & paper on canvas)
Boys studied and interpreted the many wonderful shapes and patterns found in the insect world. This work is reminiscent of the entomological collections of bygone days.
BOTANICALS (cyanotype solution on paper)
Boys collected plant samples from the extensive Ridge School gardens. They then captured these artistically through a process called Cyanotype printing, one of the oldest forms of photography, dating back to the 1840’s.
To be able to read is a blessing. To have a dry Reading Breakfast and have the blessing of rain only afterwards, is an abundant blessing! We had a most spectacular Legends of Literature Reading Breakfast on Friday the 5th of April. Boys, parents and staff all dressed up to suit the theme of authors, books, series or characters who have left a legacy in the literary world. The Grade 7’s had a breakfast stand, and they were supported very well by hungry Legends. The Book People had some books on sale, and despite the glitches with the payment system, armloads full of books were bought. A new addition to our Reading Breakfast was the photo-booth. Many people came to take their picture and some have entered it into our Photobooth Competition by tagging their pic with #theridgelegends. Thank you to all who supported this new initiative. We can’t wait to find out who the winners are!
The swimming season started with a splash as there was only one week to time all the boys and put the teams together before the first galas. Once again, we fielded 3 teams for the six inter-schools galas, although this term we only swam against the boys’ schools. The season didn’t go without its challenges when many boys were away on cricket tour for one gala, and several away playing waterpolo for another. The training also came to a grinding halt after the bank behind the stands slid into the pool. Despite these setbacks, the teams never let us down. Many boys filled in for strokes they never normally swim and some boys even climbed out of their race and dived straight back in again to complete the relay! Overall, the teams fared well with all three teams finishing in the top three places in all but one gala.
Despite the setback with the mud slide into the swimming pool, we eventually managed to have the Inter-house gala on the 28 February. The gala was won by Dunn House, closely followed by Rose House. Third place went to Cheales House and the propping up the lot was Nicolson House.
Very well done to all the swimmers on a great season and for stepping up to the mark when the chips were down!
1st XI Cricket tour to Grahamstown
Our 1st cricket team embarked on a tour to Grahamstown to take part in the Cricket week hosted by Kingswood Preparatory School. 2019 is a significant year for Kingswood as they celebrate their 150th year of existence.
The boys had a marvellous time flying to East London before being transported to Grahamstown. Upon arrival at Kingswood, the boys unpacked and got settled into their dorms in the boarding house. With a few hours to relax, we were fortunate to be taken to Port Alfred where the boys swam and played on the beach.
The boys got an early night and prepared themselves for three days of quality cricket. It was an early morning the next day and the boys headed to St Andrew’s Prep where we narrowly lost (by 45 runs) in a timed game. Our 2nd game was against Ruzawi from Zimbabwe. The boys had to fight hard for their victory (by 11 runs), as Ruzawi certainly taught our boys a few things regarding etiquette. That evening, we were treated to a formal dinner which was most enjoyable. In the final game, under the watchful eye of ‘’Father Time’’, the boys put on a strong performance in an exciting 20/20 game against Graeme College. The Ridge won the game by 18 runs and then it was back to pack and depart for the airport.
The boys had a fantastic tour and enjoyed being in each other’s company staying in a College boarding house. This would be, for many of them, a taste of what was to follow in 2020. Good cricket was played all round and lasting friendships made.
Climbing at The Ridge has become increasingly popular. This year we have 12 new boys in Grade 4 joining the team. These boys are extremely eager to get onto the wall, however, they first have to undergo the physical preparation and be taught technical knowhow before they can start climbing. In term 1, the new boys spend a lot of time acquiring skills such as helmet safety, gearing up, knots, foot and hand techniques, and the safety climbing calls, which are necessary and crucial for safe, successful climbing.
Jonathan Schwegman, and new climber in Grade 4, had this to say about climbing:
I joined climbing this year because it’s a fun sport that I can do for life ‐ it’s not like soccer or rugby where you have to stop at a certain age. You can enter competitions or you can just do it for fun! It’s a sport that makes you fit because you use your shoulders and legs in fun ways. You also need to use your core to keep balanced and to be close to the wall so that you don’t fall down. When you reach the top of the wall, you feel as if you’ve conquered the wall and you look down at others just starting and you feel like you’re on top of a mountain!
Congratulations to the following boys for being selected for leadership roles. These boys were excited, yet humbled to have been picked as captains and vice-captains and took charge of their new responsibilities without hesitation, displaying enthusiasm, passion and team camaraderie, which was especially important to the new Grade 4 group.
Captain: Alexander Hutton
Climbing is a passion of mine that pretty much started as soon as I could walk.
I was very privileged to be allowed the opportunity to climb at The Ridge as a school sport. I quickly learnt to love the sport and trained very hard. Last year (2018) was a particularly special year for me as I achieved gold in every category in my age group at national level. This year, as climbing captain, I have the opportunity to help nurture my love of climbing in other boys who are keen to try out and progress in this amazing sport.
Vice-captain for Bouldering: Alex Booysen
I started climbing in Grade 4 and I enjoyed it from the start. That year we won the climbing school of the year competition and this inspired me to push myself further. Although I am now a fairly experienced climber, I still fall from the wall and injure myself. I have suffered a few serious injuries. My task as vice-captain is to get the new boys to persevere despite the injuries they may experience. I will inspire them to be brave so that they can continue with climbing for a long time.
Vice-captain for Top Rope. William Hayton
One of the fundamental elements of climbing is belaying, which is the person at the bottom of the wall pulling up the rope preventing you from falling. The belayer also provides guidance to the climber by suggesting routes, hand holds and foot holds. In my role as one of the leaders of the climbing team, I see myself as a type of belayer for the team. I seek to provide support, guidance and encouragement for the other members of the team. I will help the team progress in reaching our goals.
SA Schools Canoeing Sprint Championships
A team of six Grade 7 Ridge boys represented the school in the annual SA Schools Championships this year. The event took place from Thursday 21st until Saturday 23rd of March on the Buffalo River in East London.
The Ridge team consisted of Nick Faure, James Stapylton-Smith, Luke MacKinnon, Ryan Herold, Alex Hutton and Joe Rosmarin. All the boys competed in both K1 and K2 races, consisting of 500m sprints, 200m sprints and a Long Distance course approximately 5km long. The boys performed well and showed resilience, especially given the unfavourable coastal conditions of strong winds and currents.
Most of the free time during the tour was spent surfing, boogie boarding and fishing at the magnificent Gonubie and Nahoon beaches. A fun time was had by all, and we look forward to The Ridge School canoeing team going from strength to strength in the coming years.
Grade 0 Grandparents’ Tea Friday 8th March 2018
On Friday 8th March the Grade 0’s held their annual Grandparents’ tea party. The boys had spent the previous two weeks preparing gifts and art work for their special guests. The long awaited day arrived and the weather was bright and sunny, much to the relief of those organising the event. The Grannies and Grandads arrived and were treated to a concert by their grandsons and Mrs Morrick to showcase what they have learnt in Music this year. The theme was “rock and roll” with songs from years gone by. The audience were tapping their feet to “Blue Suede Shoes” performed by tiny Elvis’s complete with shades and instruments.
After the concert the boys escorted their visitors to the classrooms to present them with the gifts and show off their work. It was wonderful to see old and young interacting so happily with each other in a different environment. The guests were then treated to a delicious tea in the garden and enjoyed sharing anecdotes about their grandchildren with the other grandparents.
Thank you to everyone who helped to make the day so successful. I am sure it will be a lasting memory for all involved.
Dressed in their house colours, the fun-filled 2019 Soapbox Derby saw The Ridge boys using their endless amounts of energy to zoom around the Hope Field. The boys were split up into 3 sessions: Grades 0 – 2, Grades 3 – 5 and lastly Grades 6 and 7. There was much enthusiasm as they had to pull into ‘pit stops’ to change positions from pushing to driving. They raced around the track that the Soapbox company had laid out on the field, giving it their all, and working their little legs as hard as they could to get in the most laps and finish first. Three old-school ice cream trucks were placed on the perimeter of the field and provided the boys with a well-deserved treat when they had finished their session. In between cheering on their kids and getting swept up by the competitive spirit of the day, a few parents were also spotted tucking into an ice cream or two as the midday heat intensified. An incredible vibe was created by the three MC’s: Mandy, Nico and Mbulelo. They energetically ensured that the crowd was kept up to speed with the latest results and pushed the boys to abide by the rules whilst remaining competitive. Their awesome playlists created a fun soundtrack to the day and a few dance moves were seen to be thrown out.
As with everything in life, there sadly, can only be one winner. A measly 23-point difference separated 1st and 4th place. The final scores were as follows:
1st Place: Dunn with 591 laps
2nd Place: Nicholson with 588 laps
3rd Place: Rose with 585 laps
4th Place: Cheales with 568
This was such a fantastic first event for the Grade 0 parents to organize and much fun was had by boys and parents alike.
Old Boys UK visit
On Wednesday 13 March we hosted our second UK Old Boys Reunion for close to 40 Old Boys at the RAF Club in London. The reunion was a success in a number ways. A presentation of the school and its future plans was presented by Richard Stanley and James Clucas, this was well received by old boys and many showed interest in been part of this new and exciting journey ahead.
An Impressive Old Boy story