Feelings of excitement turned to apprehension when we heard that Posh Poultry of Epping had been the target of vandals at the weekend – with many eggs and incubators stolen. So we were delighted when they called to tell us that our consignment were on their way! We kept checking on Wednesday, but no sign of any life. By Thursday lunchtime, if you listened really carefully you could hear cheeping inside the eggs and by the end of the day we could see a small crack in one egg.
As the staff arrived at school this morning 3 eggs had cracked, 2 were moving and there was much wriggling and cheeping. By 8:30am our first chick had hatched! It was amazing to watch it move its way around the incubator, tapping its beak at the other eggs. The children, staff (and parents at our Maths Morning) were so excited to see this. We have named him ‘Pecker’ as he was so determined to get out of his egg and peck through the others to release his friends.
Please watch the video to see the newest members of our community…..some egg-citing times ahead!
hatching SBAS.MOV from Simon Balle on Vimeo.
At the end of March, 10 sixth form students attended the annual Model United Nations Conference at Haileybury School. The conference is essentially a role-playing exercise, in which young people assume the roles of diplomats. Through this, pupils develop their knowledge and understanding of a wide range of international issues, from deforestation to the situation in the Middle East, as well as improving their public speaking and debating skills, and learning how to solve problems constructively.
The students researched our countries (Panama and Malta) thoroughly and then created resolutions with suggestions of how to improve aspects of world politics (through the lens of diplomats from our given countries). This is no easy task and the suggestions the students came up with reflected a great deal of research, analysis and original thinking. Below are some comments from the students who took part:
“It was great to meet so many new people and I learnt so much about how the MUN operates.” Emily Hourican
“A great opportunity to develop a different perspective on the world’s current affairs.” Olly Murphy
Following a very successful drawstring bag project Y8 have been trying batik and have made some fantastic Easter cards. Batik is a technique of wax-resist dyeing applied to whole cloth, or cloth made using this technique. You can see the cards below.
A couple of weeks ago we took 9 students to the Big Bang National Science Competition at the NEC, Birmingham. The event sees school students from around the UK competing with projects to win prizes in recognition for their work. The national competition saw 600 competitors this year with an estimated 20,000 visitors each day. The scale of the competition is huge, taking up 3 halls at the NEC.
One of our teams (Ben, Abby, Joel Georgina and George) focused on the energy we use at Simon Balle and how it can be reduced, and the other (Maddy, Oliver, Marcus and Nathan) looked at how economic our school is in terms of heat loss through windows and doors. Both teams were fantastic and really impressed the judges. The competition was fierce and unfortunately we didn’t return with any prizes this time.
As you can see from the photos we were joined by an ex student, Alice, who had worked with the ‘Eco Classroom’ team last year before her family relocated to Brighton. She joined us in presenting the project to the judges. We would like to thank the PSA, Channel Telecom and Councillor Peter Ruffles in their kind donations for helping contribute to the cost of the trip. We are very proud that the students made it to the finals and they were a credit to the school, promoting science and the need for innovation in the next generation.
Please see below a report on the Simon Balle RockSchool Gig from Y13 student Gwilym Turner in his role as Music Ambassador.
‘In March, The RockSchool students of Simon Balle shook the foundations of the Hertford Corn Exchange once again in another electrifying showcase of talent. Opening with the Junior RockSchool Project, the gig blasted off with buzzing renditions of classic, songs such as Teenage Dirtbag, Radioactive and All Star. Then the Senior RockSchool students who delivered impressive performances. Students took great care in how they presented themselves sonically and visually which highlighted the great showmanship and artistry that is prevalent within the Simon Balle RockSchool.
The students showed dedication and hard work but we must also thank the RockSchool staff: Mr Lee, Keith, Harvey, Jamie Leishman and all the involved members of sixth form without whom this event could not have taken place. A last massive thanks to Mr. Taylor and the parents of RockSchool children, for encouraging the children to grow into confident performers and artists. Your support is invaluable to your children as artists!’
Congratulations to the Y9 Boys Football team who won the District Cup before the Easter break.
Their final was against Haileybury Turnford after overcoming Sele, Broxbourne and Richard Hale in the previous rounds. It was a disciplined display from a team who have made steady progression over their time at Simon Balle. They dominated ball possession and made some clear chances in the first half with Tommy F and Thomas C going close.
They pressed on with their dominance in the second half, having to work hard against a physical Turnford side. The boys kept pushing and broke the deadlock with 15 minutes to go; Albert R delivering a free kick which Aiden R got on the end of, heading home to give the boys the lead. It was a tense last period of the game but the back line managed superbly and Simon Balle are District Champions. Well done to all boys involved in the competition this year.
A fabulous tea time showcase of brass music took place before the easter break, celebrating some of our amazing musicians. It was a wonderful occasion, with a packed audience. Congratulations to everyone who performed so well, and to Mr Wills and Mr Nunn for all their support.
On Tuesday 28th March I had the pleasure of taking Joshua C, Rhiann S, Ruth P and Harry C to University College London to compete in the Salters Chemistry festival. The pupils had an opportunity to conduct practical challenges in a university lab competing against other schools in the south west.
The students worked excellently as a team and particularly enjoyed the celebration presentation at the end by Professor Andreas Sella, who made them ice cream with Liquid Nitrogen, which was very tasty!
I would like to extend my congratulations to our amazing musicians for their Trinity music exam results. Hard work (eventually!) paid off.
The examiner was very impressed with everything he heard – you can see the list of results in the image below – please click on it to see the full version.
We are delighted that Simon Balle All-through School raised £2,016.48 for Red Nose Day.
Well done to all and especially to students who organised extra fund-raising events.