Living away from home is a big step for everyone, but these four young Wenona students have taken things in their stride as they joined Wenona's boarding community this year.
Eleanor Wyndham, Year 10, hails from Scone and is loving the friendliness of everyone and the structure that boarding provides for students.
"Boarding has given me a sense of stability in the academic field," Eleanor said.
"The solid structure to afternoons is different from what I was familiar with, and I am already able to recognise how I have benefitted from regularly completing homework."
Valeri Choi and Sophia Li both come from Hong Kong, and are taking advantage of a whole range of music, drama and sport activities.
Living on site allows boarders to participate in many extra-curricular activities, including water sports at nearby Balmoral, which allows students to try sailing, kayaking and paddleboarding in a recreational setting.
Valerie said, "Boarding has a lot of restrictions, but the restrictions are helpful to me in terms of achieving a healthy sleep schedule.
"The rules in the boarding house help me become more disciplined and develop a healthy schedule in my life."
Lucy Heagney, from Dubbo, said duties such as making her bed every morning helped with being organised and developing independence. She too has embraced her new life, especially because the small size of the boarding house of 48 boarders encourages connection with girls of all ages.
"The older girls are so easy to talk to and the boarding staff are so helpful and do their best to make you feel as comfortable as possible."
Eleanor has joined Wenona's environmental and busking clubs, stage band and rock band. And she has found other Wenonians who plays electric guitar, and who share her passion for music.
Wenona's Head of Boarding Nonie Ayling takes great pride in the close friendships in the boarding house.
She also believes that participating in a range of social and sporting activities, as well as Wenona's close proximity to Sydney, serves to enhance each student's boarding experience. "It's definitely a very special community," she says.