INDEPENDENCE, STRENGTH, RESILIENCE
Year 9 done differently
The middle years are a period of change in a girl’s life. A time when she needs to feel supported and challenged, so she can develop the resilience to be the agent of her own destiny.
The Howqua Program our girls undertake in Year 9 is unique to Lauriston, and the year a girl’s independence, courage, composure, and leadership skills are built through experiential learning in Victoria’s spectacular high country.
Girls return to the Armadale campus in Year 10 more adaptable, collaborative, resilient and willing to try new things. Indeed, Howqua girls exude a quiet confidence and maturity that sees them thrive in their senior years and beyond.
Dr Alison Manson
Vice Principal – Head of Campus
The cadence of our Howqua campus enables each student to be carefully guided through a sequence of physical, social and academic challenges in a unique environment.
It lets our girls focus on acquiring new skills such as teamwork and resilience, while engaging in outdoor pursuits that build their physical strength and confidence.
The immersive nature of the program embeds Lauriston’s values of relationships, courage, creativity, intellectual curiosity and engagement in life, and leaves the girls with unbreakable lifelong bonds and skills.
A TRANSFORMATIVE YEAR
A unique learning experience
Our Howqua campus sits on the land of the Taungurung people and throughout the year, students travel through their land while participating in our Outdoor Program, learning the history and geography of the area from both indigenous and non-indigenous perspectives.
The strengths and vulnerabilities of both students and staff are shared while living and working together on campus and it’s through this that the girls discover how to persist when challenges arise, how to learn from their mistakes, solve problems and make consequential, real-life decisions.
However, a girl’s ‘Howqua Year’ is not just about emotional development.
The year in the high country is underpinned by a full and rigorous Academic Program supported by the Visions and Values of Lauriston Girls’ School.
The Howqua Outdoor and Fitness Programs also ensure the girls attain a high level of physical condition and develop the skills and confidence to tackle challenges beyond their comfort zone.
This combination of the physical and intellectual means girls acquire the lateral thinking skills to solve problems, take control of their own wellbeing and adapt to the challenges of living away from home, guided by their teachers and backed by the expertise of psychologists, nurses and House Tutors, who are available at any time.
All this and more makes a year at Howqua truly transformative, gifting girls a deeper understanding of themselves and the world around them.
They return to family life with a greater sense of maturity and independence, a deeper appreciation for the value of relationships, and a greater engagement in life, teamwork and communication.
The Howqua Difference
Our Howqua Program is supported by the Vision and Values of Lauriston and is underpinned by an academic methodology tailored to the needs of girls in the middle years of schooling.
The Howqua framework extends the experiential learning opportunities enjoyed by Lauriston girls from Prep to Year 8 and prepares students for the rigours of the senior years of schooling and beyond.
A dedicated and experienced teamHowqua has a diverse, dedicated and experienced team of more than 20 teachers and support staff. From teachers and house tutors to psychologists, chefs and grounds staff, each has a specific role in caring for and supporting the girls as they’re challenged to grow.
An inspirational setting
Located in the spectacular Victorian High Country, Howqua inspires and captivates imaginations with its beautiful, wild surroundings. Each girl is allocated a House which is well appointed and boasts magnificent views of the valley. The town of Mansfield, a half hour’s drive from the Howqua campus, means essential services are within easy reach. .
A rich curriculum
The Howqua environment offers a robust, five-day core subject academic program, plus a range of electives designed to provide the girls choice and deeper engagement with learning as they consider the future. Teachers are available to discuss the learnings of the day or to catch up, and there’s a set 90 minutes of study every night.
The Outdoor ProgramThe Outdoor Program is run over two days each week. This unique, adventurous program invites girls to engage in life to discover their best selves and equips them for the future by teaching transferable skills, such as independence, resilience, courage and confidence in their own abilities.
Wellbeing and empowermentTeachers model appropriate ways of behaving and managing situations that empower the girls to take control of their own wellbeing, backed by the expertise of psychologists and nurses who are available at any time. Each House is assigned a Tutor, who’s responsible for keeping parents abreast of any issues that arise as girls adapt to the challenges of living away.
Sustainability & global citizenshipLauriston’s Howqua campus achieved a five-star rating for sustainability in 2016 and is one of only 25 schools in Victoria to do so. Students and staff work together to reduce waste, increase awareness of behaving sustainably and to build a community that leaves a positive impact on the environment.
A connected cohortWhether it’s in the great outdoors, the classroom or their House, the Howqua environment provides daily opportunities for girls to build their intra-personal skills. These insights into how people interact and the chance to observe the emotional responses of others are important in developing compassion, empathy and understanding.
A strong, supportive communityThe diversity of the Howqua staff means each girl will find people she can relate to and with whom she can share her thoughts and ideas. In turn, staff share their experiences with the students, which builds a strong community and helps girls understand the power of working together and supporting one another.
Leadership opportunitiesStudents are encouraged to take charge of running co-curricular activities including on-campus fitness, art, music, choir ensembles, bands, dance, library, sustainability, and gardening clubs. Leadership skills are also honed through participation in the Outdoor Program which by its very nature asks girls to step up and lead.
Transition to Year 10Girls return to the Armadale campus as Year 10 students who’ve had the experience of managing real-world problems and with a better understanding of the complexities of human relationships. They recognise and appreciate their stewardship of the environment and have developed a stronger sense of what it means to be part of a community.