Gcse Coastal Study
Derwent | Wednesday 9th October
Catching the end of the autumnal fair weather, the Derwent Geographers headed to the Yorkshire coast to further their understanding of coastal geography.
First stop was the Holderness Coast at Mappleton, where the soft boulder clay slumps into the North Sea. The students worked diligently to collect data about the beach and its sediment, the cliffs, the long shore drift and also how the coastal defences influences the processes operating.
After a successful morning, we travelled north to the stunning chalk scenery of Flamborough Head. The near vertical cliffs were studied and we were delighted a bob of seals watched us as intently as we did them! It was a wonderful site and added to the atmosphere. Again a number of pieces of data were collected and the two sites will be compared and contrasted back at school. This will be really helpful to add depth to the Paper 1 study on Physical Geography and also the Paper 3 emphasis on practical geography.
National Poetry Day
Years 6 to 10 | Thursday 3rd October
National Poetry Day was a great success and the children in Years 6 to 10 were stretched and inspired by a variety of workshops.
John Lindley ran sessions covering the content and form of poetry using his own published work and the work of others to illustrate the craft of a poet. This was not dry lecturing, far from it. John inspired the children to write some outstanding work giving them stimulating triggers before allowing them time and space to create their own magical pieces. They then read their work to each other and John praised and advised in equal measure. His advice was precise and measured and ensured the children developed significant skills.
We were very impressed by John and still more impressed by what the students began to create. All students involved in these workshops have been encouraged to revise and type up their pieces so that next week we can display their superb work within the school.
College Study Skills
College | Saturday 28th September
On Saturday all of the College were invited to attend two Study Skills workshops put on by Study Skills Zone. The first centred around Kinder and Derwent and promoted organisation, participation and teamwork. The second session was for Arkwright and focussed on revising for exams and the techniques needed to efficiently learn course content, rather than revising at the last minute. Both sessions were fun and engaging and the College got a lot from them. Through discussion, collaboration and individual challenges, everyone approached the sessions with maturity.
Year 4 | Friday 27th September
Pupils in Year 4 took a trip to the Magna Science Adventure Centre in Rotherham last Friday to find out more about the science topics the children are currently studying; Electricity and State of Matter.
We took part in two workshops: ‘State of matter’ in which we made paint and then we showed off our knowledge about ‘Circuits’ and different components.
We were able to explore the full educational centre at Magna and all the different areas; Air, Water, Earth and Fire and were lucky enough to see a fire tornedo and shoot water at different targets. We were nearly blown away by a gigantic fan and became super diggers in the earth area.
Kinder River Study
Kinder | Thursday 26th September
To enhance the learning of river concepts and theories, Kinder explored Burbage Brook and a section of the River Derwent, luckily catching some of the fairer weather! Working in small groups the students worked together to collect information on the cross-sectional area, river depth, sediment shape and size and also flow rates so both sites could be compared and contrasted.
It was a wonderful first hand experience and one which is presently being followed up in a collaboration between the Geography and Maths department. Data is being carefully analysed, allowing graphical and statistical analysis before conclusions will be drawn. This is a really good grounding in some of the higher level demands of the GSCE specification in both subjects.
Battle of Bosworth
Year 6 | Tuesday 24th September
Our pupils braved the weather and ventured to Bosworth Heritage Centre to retrace the steps of Richard III and Henry VII in the Battle of Bosworth.
As we drove through the torrential rain on the coach, we were all wondering whether the conditions on the battlefield might be a little too realistic for our liking! But, as the day progressed a sliver of sun emerged and we were treated to a tour of the battlefield and the interactive exhibition centre by our guide, Frances. Our students had the opportunity to touch medieval objects and weaponry, learn about medieval surgery, and some even tried on chain mail and medieval armour – all agreeing that being a medieval soldier was heavy work indeed! Except, as we learned, if you were unlucky enough to be a poor solider in which case you probably would have worn no armour at all…
We arrived back at school a little tired and sodden, but in high spirits from an excellent day out. Congratulations to our Year 6s for being fantastic representatives of our school and for showing themselves to be critical historical thinkers with their intelligent comments and questions to our guides throughout the day.
Blists Hill Victorian Day
Year 5 | Thursday 19th September
Our Year 5 pupils experienced a wonderful day as Victorian children at Blists Hill, Ironbridge.
We all dressed up in authentic clothing – girls in smock dresses and bonnets and boys in jackets, neckerchiefs and caps. We filed down to the school room in silence and began lessons with the formidable Ma’am. Hands were checked for cleanliness, nobody was allowed to speak unless spoken to and all lessons were based upon rote learning and chanting responses.
Our two left-handers were singled out, hauled to the front and ‘caned’. Somebody got one of their times-tables wrong – he was sent to the corner and repented later. Writing in chalk and slate wasn’t easy and one or two children were humiliated in front of everyone and told never to produce untidy work again.
Outside we had ‘Drill’ (Games), which involved marching and a variety of stretching exercises – a far cry from the huge variety of sport children experience today.
After the challenging hour in the classroom, Ma’am reverted to Dawn, the lady who had welcomed us to Blists Hill and the children visibly relaxed and sighed with relief!
It was an amazing roleplay experience to really empathise with Victorian children. Never has schooling now-a-days been so appreciated!
The remainder of the day was spent visiting shops in the town, spending Victorian money, which we had previously exchanged at the bank. The Sweet Shop was very popular as was the Fairground. Other fascinating shops were the Chemist, Print Makers and Blacksmith’s.
Before returning home, we drove into Ironbridge to walk over the actual bridge (a 20 metre cast iron bridge, first opened in 1781) to see it for ourselves. The children were very impressed!