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GALLERY: Students swap classrooms for creative arts camp


Fun was the key ingredient when Years 5 and 6 students from throughout the region attended the 2023 Hunter Creative Arts Camp.

Pupils with a passion for music, art, dance and drama from Abermain Public, Arcadia Vale Public, Belair Public, Belmont North Public, Boolaroo Public, Cardiff South Public, Carrington Public, Charlestown East Public, Coal Point Public, Ellalong Public, Fern Bay Public, Floraville Public, Garah Public, Glen William Public , Grahamstown Public, Hamilton Public, Hamilton South Public, Hillsborough Public, Hunter School of the Performing Arts, Lambton Public, Lisarow Public, Mannering Park Public, Maryland Public, New Lambton South Public, Newcastle East Public, Niagara Park Public, Rutherford Public, Soldiers Point Public, Stockton Public, Tarro Public, Tenambit Public, Tighes Hill Public, Valentine Public, Valley View Public, Wallsend South Public, Wirreanda Public and Wyong Public schools spent four days at Camp Elim Forster honing their skills.

And, didn’t they grasp every available opportunity?

A contemporary dance within the trees; a drama piece exploring the impact of nature in our lives; an art exhibition of nature inspired clay mobiles, paintings and leaf prints; and a new music piece echoing the sounds of the bush were just some masterpieces the youngsters produced.

The annual camp then culminated in a showcase concert for peers and parents in various picturesque locations around the campsite.

“This year’s theme was ‘Natural Talent’ with 108 students from 36 different schools from the Hunter, Newcastle, Central Coast and Port Stephens participating,” a spokesperson said.

“While some pupils came with others from their school, there were many who were brave enough to come to camp as the only student from their school.

“But, they all enjoyed themselves tremendously.

“Students undertook experiences and opportunities in their chosen art form everyday with specialist staff to develop a new performance or artwork for the showcase.

“These workshops were designed to explore our environment and inspire the camp theme of nature.

“Pupils were then challenged and extended with experiences and opportunities to develop talents and techniques in their chosen art form.

“They also worked with like-minded students in a creative and collaborative environment.”

Each afternoon and evening, everyone took part in activities to further strengthen student relationships including a disco, a sandcastle building competition, trivia and lawn games. 

Even the parents were impressed.

“Thank you for arranging and coordinating such a wonderful camp for all the participants this week. Our daughter had such an amazing time and felt supported and encouraged in all her activities and the incredible performances were next level,” one stated.

Another said: “What a fantastic opportunity for the children to experience. I was totally blown away by the talent shown on this camp. It was amazing.”

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