The Learning Tree Grove at Rangakarra represents the celebration of Girls Grammar’s commitment to deep faculty-based learning. The learning tree concept was designed to celebrate education as a developmental growth journey with the trees being a powerful reminder of the strength and transformative power of learning. In late September, Year 7 House Group Captains planted three new eucalyptus trees at Rangakarra as a continuation of this living installation.
The School’s first Year 7 cohort, who will graduate this year, planted the first trees in the grove as part of Girls Grammar’s 140th anniversary celebration in 2015. A commemorative boulder with a plaque marking each year’s planting, sits at the centre of the grove, and this year’s plaque will be the sixth, marking the conclusion of the first Year 7 cycle of learning.
This year, before planting, Deputy Principal (Academic), Dr Bruce Addison, invited each girl to share her thoughts on how a tree symbolises her education at Girls Grammar. Here are a few of their thoughts:
These seedlings are starting their growth into becoming beautiful and magnificent trees. These trees will be faced with all types of hardships such as drought, and it may feel that nothing will help them, but then rain will come to replenish them and help them grow. Like these seedlings, we Year 7 students are starting our growth into becoming strong and powerful women. Girls Grammar has a sense of girls supporting girls like no other. When we are in times of drought, our fellow sisters will come like rain to help us grow. – Jaimee Jessop (7R) and Sophia Skitek (7R)
Earlier this year we arrived at Girls Grammar uncertain of the adventures ahead of us. Today, eight months later, we are here to plant a tree not only to symbolise how far we have already come but to acknowledge the learning that lies ahead. Just like a tree, we have branched out, learning languages, joining clubs, and trying new sports. Each year we will see significant growth in not only our trees but in ourselves. Just like a tree swaying peacefully in the breeze draws your attention; ‘in a gentle way (we) too can shake the world’, (Ghandi). – Holly Clark (7L) and Elizabeth Young (7L)
Trees need certain things like water and sunlight to help them develop and improve but there are no set instructions as to how the tree uses these things. Learning is quite similar. We are provided with tools we can use such as classrooms and books but how we choose to use these tools is entirely our choice. There is no set path to our learning, just as there is no set path to a tree’s growth. We are all unique. In the end, no matter what path is taken, everyone and every tree has the capability to achieve anything. To us, planting our learning tree symbolises that we can grow and become our best selves.’ – Zarli Min (7H) and Aliza Roles (7H)
Ms Rachel Christopherson
Head of Beanland House and Year 7 Coordinator