Wonderful week 4 :o)
Updated: Jan 7
Class Charts reward point winners
As mentioned in last week's blog, we have been looking forward to celebrating with the students who have been awarded the most points through our Class Charts rewards system. The winners below left their Friday p5 lesson half an hour early to have a celebratory hot chocolate. Congratulations everyone!
Chris Ryan visit
On Wednesday of this week, we were absolutely delighted to welcome best-selling author, Chris Ryan, into school.
Our main priority in school this year is to improve the reading skills of all our students and to encourage them to read widely and independently. To support this, we have developed a fantastic relationship with Waterstones and managed to secure some visits from well-known and successful authors.
One of these was Chris Ryan, author of over 50 novels, including those that were turned into the Strike Back television drama. Chris originally rose to fame as a member of the elite SAS eight-man team 'Bravo Two Zero' during the Gulf War in Iraq. After their patrol was compromised, Ryan completed the longest escape on foot of any British soldier, covering over 180-miles to escape to safety in Syria.
As part of his visit, Chris delivered an inspirational talk to some lucky students, sharing experiences of his time in the SAS and how he moved from the military to a career in writing. Throughout his talk, Chris kept reiterating how important it is to stick in at school and how much extra work he has had to do throughout his career because he didn't make the most of his education. He shared stories about needing to improve his knowledge of English grammar so that he could complete his Alpine Guide course in Germany, and improve his mathematics skills for the demolition course he needed to do. Chris kept urging students to stick in now and not have to spend time in the future learning things they've missed out on.
After his talk, Chris stayed to sign books and chat to students. Many of those in the audience are active in cadets or interested in military careers themselves, so this was an amazing opportunity to hear from someone who is a legend in his field.
To find out more about Chris' books, visit: https://www.chrisryanauthor.co.uk/
Supporting reading and learning a new skill
We are really looking forward to launching the National Literacy Trust's Skills Academy with our students who need a little more help with their reading. This modern and forward-thinking scheme means students can practise reading comprehension skills and unlock rewards that teach them how to beatbox and breakdance or to be a freestyle footballer!
As well as that, the scheme also provides us with a class set of books and we were very excited when we unwrapped a box full of Max Kowalski Didn't Mean It by Susie Day. What a beautiful cover!
The scheme itself is supported by Clarks and offers students an interactive experience with a reward video at the end of each section. Students can choose whether they want to learn a freestyle football trick or how to beatbox and breakdance. Membership is only £100 for the year and we would highly recommend it to colleagues in other schools. If you do explore it, please mention us as we'll get a little thank you from the National Literacy Trust.
Our annual Year 8 Open Evening also took place this week and we couldn't have asked for a better turn out or feedback, both on the night and via Twitter:
We would also like to thank everyone who purchased from our book sale to raise money for new stock for our library. We are happy to accept donations of books if you're having a clear out! Please bring them to the main office and leave them for Kathryn Furness.
Finally, a huge thank you to everyone who took part in the tombola or bought a baked delight from our Applied Learning students. They raised an amazing £113.30, which will be split equally between Cancer Research and Make A Wish Foundation. Our students worked really hard to bake the goodies and collect prizes for the tombola, and feel a real sense of satisfaction at raising such an amazing total.
Fab-Bricks School Fundraising
And finally, we are working with Fab-Bricks on a great fundraising opportunity. The company are the UK's number 1 in personalised Lego, and you have the chance to order a range of keyrings and mini-figures to your own design. Any items that you order result in £1 being donated to the school; if you order multiple items on the same form, we receive £1 for each one! We have sent out order forms with all our students and hope that you are able to support us. They would make fabulous Christmas presents, with prices starting from £3.25. Please return your completed order form to our finance office by Friday 8th November. You can make your payment online via ParentPay or send money with the order form. Thank you in advance for supporting this initiative.