Yr 9 & 10 Music Elective workshop

Our lucky Year 9 & 10 elective music students were recently visited by Emily Lubitz from Tinpan Orange.

Yr 11 student makes us proud

Tara Jahns of Year 11 made us very proud serving on the panel at the Byron Bay Writers Festival after winning the young writers’ award.


Year 7 excursion

As part of the Year 7 Wish, Wonder and Surprise Main Lesson, this week the class went on a wonderful excursion to first visit the pre-schoolers at Periwinkle and then the residents at the RSL Nursing Home in Suffolk Park. Students spent the morning playing with 4 year olds in the sandpit, on the flying fox, up a tree, with their elbows immersed in bubbles and singing songs. At midday, the students met an equally welcoming group of new friends, this time aged into their late 80s. Our students recited poetry and played musical instruments, before playing a group game of Pictionary, sharing cookies and fruit platters, and getting to know a little about the people who live there in residential care. The class felt profoundly touched by this unique excursion where we experienced up close and back-to-back the polarities of life, and the wonder each brings. Thank you so much to the staff at both Periwinkle and the RSL Nursing Home for welcoming us so warmly into your environments as you did. The students described the day as “inspiring”, “touching”, “moving” and a day that made them feel “grateful” and “happy”.

Alix Johnson – Yr 7 Guardian

Harry James Angus Songwriting Workshop

The Music students in our Year 9 and 10 Music Elective program were lucky enough to have Harry spend some time work-shopping songwriting and playing music with them. Harry is most well known for his role in The Cat Empire as the trumpet player and singer and has shared his knowledge and experiences with our students. Harry shared some great songwriting techniques and participating students wrote and shared their own short compositions.

Congratulations to our Yr 11 Student

We received excellent news today that Tara Jahns of Year 11 won the prestigious young writers’ award for the Byron Bay Writers Festival. Tara submitted a story that was chosen from many entries! We are very proud of Tara who will receive a cash prize to further her writing ambitions, and she will be given a formal presentation at the festival this weekend.

A student from our school, Thea Shields from the graduating year of 2015, also won this prize, showing Cape Byron Steiner School as a school that produces wonderful young writers.

Katie Biggin

Congratulations to our Yr 12 Student

We wish to congratulate Isabelle McMullen for being awarded the title of Lifesaver of the year for the Far North Coast of NSW.

Isabelle has been involved in lifesaving since she was a young child. She participates in volunteer patrolling at Byron Bay and has assisted in managing younger age groups in her capacity as a leader in the club.

We are very proud of Isabelle for achieving this wonderful award. It is a testament to her hard work and commitment to an important social service in the community.

Katie Biggin

Staying Safe on Social Media

Dealing with the perils of online communication and safety in the social media world is one of the biggest issues confronting our young people today. Parents are also under pressure to ensure that their children are developing safe practices around social media use.
Just when we think we understand how to maintain privacy and safety, the goalposts shift through updates in Apps and various social media tools. To make sure staff, students and parents are aware of the issues, we have linked with a great organisation called Safe on Social, who supports our school through professional learning for our staff, sessions for our students and information for our parents.

Easily found on our website under the Information Tab, are a set of esafety resources that can be downloaded by parents and students. These relate to the most popular sites such as Snapchat, Instagram, Facebook and many others. We are hoping that parents will access this information and the other links on the website.

One of the most important tools to stay safe is to turn off Location Services on your mobiles. There is a recent update from Snapchat that is particularly worrying in terms of its tracking exactly where the snapchat is coming from on a map unless you have location services turned off.

Once a user updates to the latest version of the app, all they need to do to launch Snap Map is pinch the Snapchat camera home screen. From there, they can choose to share their location with all of their friends, select some of them, or choose none of them by using ‘Ghost Mode’, which hides them from the map but still allows them to track their friends.

Next term, High School students will have further educational talks around staying safe on social media with Kirra Pendergast from Safe on Social. This follows the excellent work of Peter Chown this term who spoke to the students about avoiding addictive behaviour in relation to mobile phones and how to keep the brain healthy with these challenges. The parent talk he gave was very illuminating, however unfortunately not many parents attended the talk.

The students will be experiencing some presentations in Term 3 about how to stay safe online with Safe on Social. Very specific information will be shared about settings on mobile phones and how to protect your digital footprint. Students will also have the usual presentations from Lisa Romero, who brings an anthroposophical approach to young people managing the challenges of adolescent life.

Please assist our work by accessing the information on our website and being vigilant with your teenager’s online behaviour.


Yr 9 & 10 Elective Showcase

Important HS Parent talk – Peter Chown 8th June

Peter Chown is a local Psychologist who has extensive experience working with adolescents in the area, on Wednesday 7th June he will be talking to Yr 7 – 10 students. He will be discussing issues such as mental health, brain health & risks associated with social media.

Following on from this on Thursday 8th June we invite HS parents to meet and hear Peter Chown from 6.30pm-7.30pm in the Hall. We strongly encourage all HS parents to attend this very important and informative discussion.

Y7 Horse Riding Camp

Last week, Year 7 travelled eight hours west to Garrawilla Station, Bingara, near Inverell, for a Jackaroo Jillaroo experience. Students pitched their tents by the homestead and slept under a sky awash with the Milky Way. When Ric told us there were more stars in the universe than there are grains of sand of earth, we believed him; at night it felt like we were sleeping under each one. Our days were spent horse riding along the picturesque Gwydir river, cantering through knee deep creek crossings, then dropping our horse’s reins to let the them graze in green meadows while we sat under trees to eat lunch, chat and skip stones. It was a magical week and the children were magnificent company. We also tried our hand at archery, whip cracking, orienteering, sheep shearing and even sheep riding. We learnt a lot about ourselves and each other, how to ride a horse, use a compass and navigate by the stars, but most of all we had a lot of fun. It was a camp that lived up to its reputation; one to remember! Thanks to Ric and Paddy for such a fantastic experience and a wonderful start to high school camps.

Alix – Y7 Guardian

Y10 and 11 Creative Writing Workshop

Undeterred by a week of work experience and exams, thirty enthusiastic Year 10 and 11 students signed up for a unique opportunity to develop their creative writing skills with acclaimed local author (and CBRSS parent) Sarah Armstrong. On Monday 29 May, as part of a Byron Writer’s Centre initiative to promote creative writing by taking published authors into schools, we were lucky enough to have Sarah run StoryBoard, a three-hour workshop at school. The students discovered that Sarah is not only a talented writer who has had three novels published and been short-listed for the Miles Franklin Award, Australia’s premier literary award, but she is just as skilled at teaching the art of writing. Students were given direction and space to practise free writing, characterisation, plot structure and ways to maintain narrative tension through depiction of action. Thank you Sarah for a wonderful afternoon of invaluable insights you so generously shared with us.

– Katie, Ben, Alix

Year 10 Subject Forum

As part of our transition to Senior School, the Year 10 students experienced a Subject Forum where Year 11 and 12 students talked about the subjects they are studying and gave a student perceptive about why they chose and/or liked the subject.

All of our wonderful Year 11 and 12 leaders were involved in holding conversations with the Year 10 students on their particular subject tables. This is a yearly event and it runs a bit like a ‘speed dating’ set up where bells are rung and students move to another subject after 5 minutes of sharing by the Year 11 and 12 students.

The Year 10 students were very engaged and many came away with useful information that they will use, in combination with other school processes, to decide on their subjects for Years 11 and 12.

On Wednesday 7th June, from 4.45pm, the Year 10 parents and students are invited to a Year 11/12 Information Night where teachers present information about subjects and the details of our senior program are explained. Small groups tour the Visual Arts, Science, Music and Design and Technology rooms to hear teachers talk about their subjects. This is followed by a presentation in the Hall by other teachers who will talk passionately about their subjects and what is involved in the Year 11 and 12 years.

Katie Biggin

Year 10 Post Modern Art Main Lesson

Jackson Pollock – drip paintings
Damien Horst – spin paintings
Andy Goldsworthy-clay patterns
Organic Abstract Sculptures



The North Coast Sports Association Inter School Cross Country Event

This event was held on Thursday 18th May at Dennison Park in Ballina and involves all the Independent private schools from Tweed Heads to Coffs Harbour. A beautiful day at a picturesque spot set the scene for a magnificent day where over 45 students from our school competed against some of the biggest schools and best runners in the Northern Rivers Region. Unfortunately our year 10 students where on “work experience” and most could not participate in this event, but thanks to a great team effort by the rest of our students, Cape Byron Steiner School came a very impressive 5th place overall. In the primary school division we were able to take out 3rd place despite the fact we only send our year 5 and 6 students to compete in this event. This is a fantastic result!
Eight of our students earned an invitation to represent the NCIS at the CIS state championships at eastern Creek in Sydney on the 15th June and many were placed in the top 10 in their division. All ran with pride and exuberance. Both Lizzie Gavaghan and I were proud and impressed with the student’s performances and behaviour on the day. We both agreed that we would be happy to accompany this group of students to any function. Well done! The following students all received exceptional results in their divisions.

Briana Hart 2nd, Arlo Amos-Eakin 4th, Amit Sonnenfeld 7th, Leila Campbell 5th, Hannah Murray 6th, Yani Murray 4th, Tahlia Van Oostrum 4th, Harper Kelso 3rd, Omri Ben-Harush 3rd.

Steve Richards

Vietnam 2017

On the 1st of April, thirteen students from Year 11 and 12 set off on a two week journey across Vietnam, accompanied by teachers Jess and Rachel. After many delays due to flooding, three flights and lots of waiting at airports, we arrived two days later in Hanoi City. From Hanoi we travelled south, down to Cuc Phuong National Park, Hoi An, to the Mekong Delta and finally Ho Chi Minh City.

We spent the first day exploring Hanoi’s old French quarter in rickshaws and travelling to a small farming village called Dong Trieu. Here we visited a local school, played a game of soccer with the Vietnamese students, rode bikes through the friendly village, tried rice farming and spent the night in a beautiful little homestay overlooking the fields. Our host family served us an incredible feast; steaming bowls of noodle soup, freshly fried spring rolls, Vietnamese salad, fragrant rice, stir fried vegetables, tofu sauteed in tomato and fresh fruits.

We spent the next three days in Cuc Phuong National Park, volunteering in the Endangered Primate Rescue Center and hiking through the lush jungle. Following our stay in the jungle, we made our way to Hoi An, on a 16 hour train trip overnight. Although many of us were not looking forward to the overnight train, sleeping in small four-bed cabins on a moving train turned out to be one of our favourite experiences.

We spent our three days in Hoi An learning how to cook Vietnamese food at a cooking class, exploring the city and waterways and venturing out to the lantern lit streets to the night markets. Our next stop was a small homestay by the riverside on the Mekong Delta before spending our last 3 days in Ho Chi Minh City. We spent our time in Ho Chi Minh exploring the city during the day and famous Ben Thanh marketplace at night. Overall, it was a wonderful trip and extraordinary experience that has formed amazing bonds between us. We would like to say a huge thank you to Vietnam School Tours and our inspiring and enthusiastic Vietnamese tour guide Thoi, to Jess and Rachel for caring for us and for an unforgettable two weeks in Vietnam, and lastly, thank you to the the school for such an incredible opportunity.

Ella Hart – Yr 11 Student

Rachel and Jess enjoying a Choco Pie.