Steeped in 143 years of history, Toorak College is a school community that dreams big, strives for excellence and inspires future lives.
Recently the Junior School, Wardle House, celebrated its 60th Anniversary. Celebrations commenced with a school assembly attended by special guests Mr Chris Crewther, the Federal Member for Dunkley and Mr David Morris, the State Member for Mornington and Shadow Minister for Finance.
Festivities continued throughout the day with a VIP morning tea and a party in the afternoon enjoyed by students and their families with roving entertainment, music performances by students, vintage games and fun passports taking students on a historical journey of Wardle House.
In the lead-up to the 60th anniversary celebrations, each junior school student designed their own 'peg doll'. This activity originated as a competition in Wardle House throughout the ‘60s and ‘70s for students to earn points for their Houses, and is remembered fondly by the Collegians today.
Students wrote letters to Collegians asking them about the history of Wardle House; this helped to give them an understanding of the historical significance of traditions and events that they enjoy and embrace today. The Annual Beach Picnic which started in 1956 for day students to bring lunch for the boarders, the House system which provides a feeling of identity and belonging, weekly Share Assemblies, the Birthday song, House Fairs and Sharing Day are just a few.
Mrs Caralyn Such, President of the Toorak Collegians, shared her adventures at Wardle House with the current students. “I grew up in Mount Eliza which was just a little country town and Wardle House was very small then. It was a bushland block, there was no play equipment so we used to build cubby houses in the tea tree. Ms Wardle was Principal of Toorak College, and Miss MacLean was Head of Junior School.
“In my day there were no aerobics teams or theatre productions, but we did do ballet classes in an old wooden building called ‘The Elephant’. I remember we used to get a cooked lunch every day, which came down from the boarding house.”
Head of Wardle House, Mrs Mandy Whitworth says, “We are so proud of the warm, supportive and inclusive environment that Wardle House continues to provide. It is the traditions, values and rituals of the past that continue to make Wardle House the special place it is today.”
Discover Toorak on Wednesday, October 18, with tours at 9am and 10am. Applications for 2019 Scholarships close on Friday, October 20. For more details, visit toorakcollege.vic.edu.au