Face Your Sharks!

February 28, 2020  
Head of Senior School - Mr Nick Hackett

This year, TIGS teachers are focusing on the concept of ‘growth’ and what it means in all areas of life at TIGS. At the start of the year, I gave students three pieces of advice that are broad enough to apply in a range of situations. Last week, I discussed the importance of making one’s bed. This week I want to talk about facing your sharks.

As long as I can remember I have always had a fascination with water. I was a confident swimmer almost before I could walk and whilst studying, served as a qualified lifeguard and swimming coach to help pay the bills. But it wasn’t until I was in my mid 30’s that I took up scuba diving. Scuba diving opens a whole world of underwater beauty and adventure that is hard to imagine until you’ve experienced it firsthand. But whilst the coral and various reef-fish provide a colourful and compelling spectacle for the diver, it certainly pays to keep a keen eye on what might be lurking at the edges of your peripheral vision.

Sharks are majestic and quite often misunderstood creatures. We rarely hear about them until they have had an unfortunate interaction with a swimmer, surfer or diver, but most of the time, they are quietly inquisitive beasts content to keep their distance. And yet sometimes, for a range of reasons beyond our control or understanding, a shark may take a persistent interest in us. And what are we to do then?

At the start of term, Admiral McRaven of the US Navy shared what he orders his young recruits to do should they ever face this terrifying moment. He urges them to turn and lock eyes with the shark, staring it down and if that doesn’t cause the shark to turn tail they should “summon up all of (their) strength and punch it on the snout!”

Overcoming life’s problems is never easy. But the fact is that things rarely if ever improve if we simply pretend the problem isn’t there. My message to the students for this term is this; should they ever feel something is holding them back or challenging their progress, then they should know that they do not need to face the problem – the shark if you will – alone. By being a member of our TIGS community it is my hope that students will not only embrace the wonderful opportunities provided for them but that they would also feel emboldened to face their sharks – whatever they may be – with confidence, sure in the support of their teachers, family and friends. Whether it be a personal challenge, a barrier to learning, or any other type of difficulty, I encourage each TIGS student not to fear their sharks but to turn and face them with confidence – you’ll be surprised at how quickly they tend to swim away!


Don’t forget that TIGS Tuition Hub is up and running. These sessions will take place in the library unless otherwise stated. Our teachers are ready and available to provide expert additional support in whatever area you most need it. You can find more information on OLLE or please speak to your subject teachers who will be happy to provide further information.

Sports News

TIGS Tennis Day

On Friday 21 February, Senior School students took part in TIGS Tennis Day. The day was used as a competition to choose players who will represent TIGS at the NASSA Gala Day. For results and to see some photos, visit the OLLE Tennis page.

CIS Football Game

On Friday 21 February, Senior School students from TIGS competed in a CIS Football game against St George Christian School. TIGS was victorious on the day winning 10 – 0. To see the team list and images from the day visit OLLE.



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