The specially designed course was structured to help students push themselves to achieve higher levels. The group, which consisted of ten Y8 students, delved deeply into issues of the heart and pen through exploration of two poems from the GCSE anthology, ‘Moon on the Tides’. After we had studied ‘Manhunt’ by Simon Armitage and ‘The Farmer’s Bride’ by Charlotte Mew the students made a valiant attempt at writing a GCSE style comparative essay in under thirty minutes. One of the participants commented, “this club helped us further our interpretive skills because the poems chosen were more complex and mature than the ones we are currently studying in English lessons”.
It was a pleasure to work with such enthusiastic and mentally-agile students and I was very impressed by the their perceptive interpretations and comparisons. We aim to build more stretch and challenge into the Y8 English curriculum as a result.
Please take some time to read Amber Clarke’s comparative essay via this link: Compare how Armitage and Mew present relationships
Recently AS Biologists have been learning about the 2 ways bacteria can transfer genes: horizontal and vertical gene transmission. This is important as it links to antibiotic resistance, natural selection and the future and ethics of treating diseases such as MRSA. To consolidate their learning they made videos of the two processes to compare them – you can see both videos in the clip below.
Last Thursday St Andrews Church hosted a showcase of contemporary and musical theatre songs by Simon Balle students, accompanied by Jeremy Lovell and Keith Willis. This show, in which students perform in front of friends, family and school staff was a huge success and congratulations must go to the individual students who produced confident and bold renditions. Debbie Kemp must also be recognised for her work getting the singers ready.
To listen to the audio recorded on the night please follow the link below to the music department’s twitter feed (you do not need a twitter account to access it) and once again enjoy the sounds of our talented students!
Last week we were delighted to be joined by 4 chefs from Hertfordshire Catering Ltd. They worked with Y7 students who assisted them in the production of 4 oily fish dishes suitable to serve for school lunches.
Using a range of new recipes – Lentil and mackerel lunch box, Salmon fish cakes, Mackerel pâté, Jerk roast fish and Salmon sticks served with sweet potato chips – students were able to develop their knife skills in the preparation of a range of ingredients, including handling and preparing raw fish.
The students completed a sensory analysis of all the dishes before voting on their favourite – ‘Salmon fish cakes’. The mackerel pâté and freshly baked toasted bread rolls was a definite favourite too.
All students were brilliant and tasted all the prepared dishes. Well done Y7! Please take some time to look through some of the photos that were taken during the session.
Lorraine Gregory, our Catering Manager, has successfully completed an extensive course which allows her to train other Hertfordshire catering staff. The Simon Balle canteen is now an official ‘Hertfordshire Catering Ltd Skills Training Centre‘. This is a great achievement as there are only three other training centres throughout the county.
Lorraine and her team do an excellent job each day providing break and lunchtime food to students and staff. Congratulations and well done!
Last week during form time, students reflected on the importance of Philosophy, Religion & Ethics and why it is now a compulsory subject at GCSE. They also considered the importance of higher level questioning, devising philosophical questions based on the controversial images that challenge perceptions of everyday situations. Well done to 7N, 8M, 9R and 10M on their winning entries! Here they are:
When you shut the door, do you shut yourself in or keep others out? (7N)
Why do people go to war if there is a possibility they may not return? (8M)
What does it mean to be sentimental, If other cultures have different sentimental value on different objects? (9R)
How can we believe something is real just because we’re told it is? (10M)
You can see some of the images they used as a basis for their discussions below.