blog week ending 26th February

Posted on: 25/02/2021

We have all eagerly awaited the Prime Minister’s announcement regarding our scheduled return to school and the procedure for GCSE and A levels.  We are incredibly pleased to be able to welcome our students back from the week commencing 8th March (other than the clinically extremely vulnerable). I have sent a letter home to outline our return to school and associated requirements regarding lateral flow tests – please ensure you complete the online consent form for our testing programme.  The letter can be read by clicking here.  Next week we will share more details regarding how the testing programme will work and to outline the arrangements for determining our Year 11 and 13 examination grades.

In the meantime, we will continue with our live online lessons until we meet again in the classroom.  We can’t wait to see you all!

In ‘other news’! …

The recent snowy conditions provided an opportunity for scientific discovery with a series of al fresco experiments with Mr Barnes’ Y8 students.  Using home ingredients, students created colourful snow volcanos!  A great way to spend time away from the screen and take part in a practical lesson from home.

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Year 9 students have shared these amazing bakes (well, pictures of them at least!)  Hiba, Rachael, Yakshana and Gracie staged their own baking competition during half term, each judging the cakes based on looks alone!  .. but don’t they all look delicious? Congratulations, they all look like winning entries to me.

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During National Apprenticeship Week we caught up with student Alumni who have been following apprenticeship schemes with Laing O’Rourke.  A number of WG6 students have pursued careers with Laing O’Rourke via their Professional Apprenticeship Scheme.  We are incredibly proud of our Alumni currently training with Laing O’Rouke as quantity surveyors, engineers, human resource officers and commercial assistants including Olivia and Chloe who are currently working toward their BSc in Human Resource Management.

Olivia Smith Assoc CIPD and Chloe McCarthy Assoc CIPD are both HR Advisors at Laing O’Rourke and have achieved their Associate Membership for Charted Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD) as part of the Professional Apprenticeship Scheme having left WG6 in 2018 following the completion of their A Levels.

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National Careers Week takes place between the 1st and 6th of March 2021.  The Parents’ Guide to National Careers Week 2021 provides parents with the information they need to help their teenage children make the right choices to create successful futures after GCSE and sixth form. These online guides are designed to inform, involve and guide parental support. They include the most up to date information on topics such as apprenticeships, universities and revision techniques

https://nationalcareersweek.com/parentsguide/

MFL Chinese New Year Celebrations. “During half term break, students were engaged in Chinese New Year fun activities. We have received a number of pictures of Chinese lanterns and paper cutting. They look absolutely fabulous.  At the same time, students were enjoying cooking Chinese festival feasts. They made dumplings, spring rolls and stir fries. The dishes look so yummy!  We also have some staff enthusiastically demonstrate their first attempt at Chinese cooking! The dishes are so well prepared. Well done!”  Mrs Cai

Mr Dufton, Head of MFL prepared the below celebratory feast.

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Caitlin S

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Aarsine N & Emily B

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Ade O

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Our Year 7 students have been keeping reading logs and writing book reviews during lockdown.  Recommendations and reviews will be displayed in the library to help students decide which books they would like to read, and to encourage students to try books from genres and authors they might not normally have considered.  Mrs Black, our librarian is inviting Y7 students to submit their reviews for inclusion.  Prizes and House Points are up for grabs, Mrs Black will be presenting book vouchers to winning student reviewers (pulled from the Library Harry Potter hat!).  All entries must include;

Book title and author

Why you chose the book

First impressions after reading a page or chapter

Overall summary and final opinion on the book

Reviews already received include; (and yes, they really did make me want to pick up the books!)

Prosper O of 7C

The Ruby in the Smoke – Philip Pullman

My first impression…was that it would be a very interesting book. When I read the blurb, it said it was a story about how a girl must go on a dangerous mystery adventure to uncover the dark secrets of a blood-soaked jewel…

The first page of ‘The Ruby in the Smoke’ was very intriguing because it gave some information but didn’t give all of the information which caused me to read on. The first chapter was called ‘The Seven Blessings’ which had me very intrigued indeed. The quote “Her name was Sally Lockhart; and within fifteen minutes she was going to kill a man…” left me wanting to find out more about Sally and who EXACTLY she was going to kill.

After the first 40 pages I couldn’t prise myself away from the book. Sally now had a book that would tell her everything about the enemy she could not see. But… the book had been stolen by a man on the train with Sally - she fell asleep and when she woke up at her stop she realised… the book was gone. Sally went to see if she could catch up with the man that stole the book but she wasn’t able to.

So much had happened in the first 40 pages. Sally was gradually getting closer to uncovering the mystery about that ruby. Little did she know that because of this blood-soaked jewel…her life was at stake…

Eva E of 7R

The Midnight Unicorn – Alice Hemming

From viewing the front cover, I think the book has certainly got a majestic or magical unicorn that is involved in the plot. There is a small border around both the back and front of the book which has black and grey vines so from this I can imagine that an important building gets abandoned or is overgrown.

The reason I chose this book to read was because I quite enjoy a fantasy type mystery and I was interested in reading the rest of the series and other books by the author.

On the first page we find out there is a castle- on a steep hill- in the city of Essendor, amongst small and sturdy houses all around the base of the hill. It is a warm autumn day with red and orange coloured leaves that have fallen from the trees. Joy fills the town as a new queen has just been coronated and bunting is blowing through the gusty winds.

After 40 pages this story certainly has got me hooked as over the past 6 years a magical unicorn has saved the lives of many and has anonymously protected the kingdom however when the realm needs help the most, whilst under attack, the saviour is nowhere to be seen.

Our student managers ran a special ‘Express Yourself’ competition in conjunction with Children’s Mental Health Week.  Mrs Pike commented “we received so many amazing entries, each expressing the individuality and creative ability of the student, we really enjoyed seeing them all but it made choosing the winner extremely difficult!”

Congratulations to all contestants (all have been awarded House Points), but especially to our winners Abi L, Edna A and Vware A who will be presented with their prizes when we return to school.

Abi L 

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Vware A  - created a video

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Edna A composed a poem;

Mental Health 

Life unfolds in new chapters 

You are the author to your own life  

If you feel like you cannot carry on, 

Don’t add a full stop  

Don’t give up  

 

Be strong  

Carry on, 

Battle through the dark times  

Let the inner light in you shine  

 

Don’t complete your story  

With words of sadness and pain  

But leave a story of strength  

Just take pride in who you are  

And be proud of your power. 

 

Sanja S

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Anya L

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Mrs McKenna has been working with her Year 9 Drama classes to provide feed-back on proposed topics and texts to help develop lesson plans and activities for when we are all together again!  Not surprisingly, students are looking forward to taking part in group work!  Other areas suggested, which we will explore in the classroom, are improvisation and drama games.  There is also interest in us producing a class musical or production.  Watch this space!

Annie T of Y10 is a player member of Dartford Valley Rugby Club.  She shared this wonderful aerial shot of the club, and its snowy show of support and thanks for all NHS workers.  For more details, please visit their Facebook site Dartford Valley Rugby Club - Dartford | Facebook

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Kent County Council have produced the below poster to encourage families to submit applications for Benefit Related Free School Meals.  The prolonged period of lockdown and the associated financial impact has seen a significant increase in the number of eligible families.  Please follow the link in their advert to apply or for further information.

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Best wishes,

 

Michelle Lawson

Head Teacher

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