Co-curricular Activities - Cranbrook School

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Co-curricular Activities

Co-curricular Activities: Art, Debating, Drama, Music and Sport

Cranbrook offers a wide range of extra subjects over and above the set curriculum designed to widen each students’ horizons, enable them to find their niche and allow them to grow in confidence and achieve excellence in all that they do. 

Reflecting the true ethos of the School, Cranbrook's co-curricular activities are broad, distinctive, holistic and well rounded.

All additional activities are designed to develop important skills in leadership, communication, creativity and cooperation, and range from sports, to languages, music, robotics and chess.

Social Service is an important aspect of a student’s education at Cranbrook. The concept of giving and the spirit of ‘being rather than seeming to be’ is fundamental to the programme.

Cranbrook strives to develop a lifelong ethical spirit of social service through the understanding and appreciation of how materially fortunate the boys are, as first world citizens, and instil a feeling of an ethical prerogative to ‘give back’ to the community and the resulting personal satisfaction.

Cranbrook students are involved in a wide range of community initiatives both within Australia and overseas ranging from Clean Up Australia Day, Red Shield Appeal, Red Nose Day, Toys and Tucker, as well as cancer awareness programmes and flood and fire relief aid.


Art at Cranbrook is strong from Pre-school to Year 12. It is deeply embedded in the essence of the School and an intrinsic part of the curriculum.

Beyond developing and enhancing artistic skills and talents, students learn the craft of thinking critically and creatively; skills that they will be able to apply to any discipline, area of study or work environment throughout their lives.

Specialist Visual Arts teachers inspire our Pre-schoolers and Junior School boys. In the Senior School Art is compulsory for Year 7 and Year 8. From Year 9 electives offered include Visual Design, Photographic and Digital Media and Visual Arts. These studies culminate in the Preliminary and HSC courses in Years 11 and 12.

Artists’ residencies, studio workshops and demonstrations by practicing artists provide students with invaluable opportunities to engage with the art world and enhance their visual arts experience.

Cranbrook has a strong legacy of Old Cranbrookians forging successful careers within the Arts and we pride ourselves, and look to build upon, our exceptional tradition of artistic expression.


The Cranbrook Debating programme offers students many opportunities to develop and refine the art of reasoned argument on a range of significant social and political issues that shape our world.

We are involved in three extended competitions throughout Terms 1-3, with training and debates taking place on Friday afternoons and evenings.


The Independent Schools Debating Association competition takes place in Terms 1 and 2 each year, and is the premier debating competition for independent schools in NSW.


The Eastside competition also takes place in Term 1 and 2 each year, with students debating against other schools within the Eastern Suburbs of Sydney.


The Combined Associated Schools competition takes place in the first half of Term 3 each year and involves debaters who competed in either the ISDA or Eastside competitions.

In addition to receiving quality coaching from experienced debaters, students also have access to a wealth of support material through our online learning platform and they are invited to guest speaker talks on a range of significant issues to cultivate their general knowledge for Friday night debates. Workshops and opportunities to attend professional debate series are also offered throughout the year.


Drama is an integral and thriving part of the School’s fabric, and the boys participate in a wide range of productions from Shakespeare to the experimental.  From double bills to delightful musicals, Drama provides students with an extraordinary number of opportunities, and audiences with unforgettable experiences.

Such is the strength of the dramatic talents of our students, many of them have had opportunities to perform in productions with neighbouring girls’ schools.

Our excellent teaching drama practitioners coupled with our Artists-in-Residence programmes, has ensured ongoing outstanding performances and productions, of which we are very proud.


Music forms a very special part of the Cranbrook community.  Our vision is to provide a world class music programme for a world class school: an inclusive music programme with excellence at its core. A programme which excites, inspires and encourages boys to dream, persevere and achieve; while developing resilience and personal growth.

Across the Pre-Schools, Junior School and Senior School, boys benefit from numerous ensemble opportunities and a specialist team of classroom, Instrumental, Vocal, Composition and Studio Engineering staff.   The four streams available for Cranbrook’s musicians are:

  • strings
  • woodwind, brass and percussion
  • vocal
  • contemporary

Within these streams are numerous core large ensembles such as Concert Bands, Orchestra/String Ensembles and Choirs. In addition, there are a number of extension opportunities available to boys including Jazz Ensembles, Composition classes, Rock Ensembles, Guitar Ensembles and Chamber Music.

Pre-School and Junior School

Each of our Pre-schools benefit from a dedicated specialist music lesson each week. This is built upon in the Junior School where music is delivered through the three aspects of Classroom, Choral and Instrumental. Each year in the Junior School participates in a Year Choir in addition to their classroom lesson and in Year 2 and 3, all boys benefit from our recently introduced Strings and Woodwind, Brass and Percussion Programmes.

Recording Studio

Cranbrook boys have access to a state of the art contemporary recording facility which will allow the boys at Cranbrook to extend their curriculum music studies with essential exposure to music-industry practice.

The mind, heart and soul of this exciting addition to music at Cranbrook supports student performance and composition, charitable in-house productions, and external philanthropic productions with leading national and international musicians.

Private Lessons

Individual lessons are available to boys throughout the school day and are delivered by leading visiting instrumental tutors.

Other Opportunities

In addition to our regular performance schedule, our Music Department regularly hosts leading music educators and performers from around Australia and overseas.


Our Sports programme is both deep and wide: major sports flourish alongside important minority pursuits. All are undertaken in a spirit of genuine education: we play sport because it teaches valuable lessons about resilience, challenge, courage, failure and success. Each of our teams aim to be greater than the sum of its individual parts. We look for grace in both victory and defeat. We are proud that Cranbrookians have competed at the highest level and have represented themselves and their communities with distinction and humility.

Cranbrook is a member of the Combined Associated Schools (CAS), a group of Sydney independent schools which share common interests, ethics and educational philosophy, Cranbrook Senior School competes in well organised and highly competitive inter-school CAS competitions throughout the year.  Students in Years 3 to 6 compete in a similar competition organised by the Independent Primary Schools Heads Association (IPSHA).