Exam timetables for both GCSE and GCE are now available for: viewing, download and printing
On Monday 18 th November a group of Year 9 students visited the Nissan plant in
Sunderland. Pupils were welcomed in to Nissan to take part in activities relating to
Engineering, and heard how engineers are adapting to an ever changing world;
engineers who studied traditional technologies such as petrol-powered vehicles are
now learning about electric vehicle technology. Students discovered more about the
100% electric Nissan Leaf.
Students also heard from current apprentices at Nissan about their job roles in
manufacturing/engineering, and about the entry requirements and employability skills
required to work there, including teamwork, problem solving, communication and
flexibility. Then it was off to the shop floor for a tour of the production line where
pupils got to see the current Nissan cars being built.
Tuesday 12th April saw a real buzz around school with the visit by author Dan Freedman. Journalist and author of the Jamie Johnson football series, Dan has visited schools around the country and around the world. Year 7 students were able to find out first- hand what it was like for Dan to work for The Football Association and meet some of the world’s best football players.
Students also took part in a question and answer session in which Dan shared his knowledge of football and brought his books to life. A prize was given for the best question, and one lucky student won a football, a signed copy of Dan’s first book and a five pound note.
During the BIG TALK, Dan explained that as a young school student he didn’t think he was very good at reading and writing, but his love and passion for football inspired him to become a journalist and then a writer of fiction books for children.
There was a message for us all to ‘go for our goals’ as Dan’s determination shone through in overcoming setbacks to eventually publishing his first book.
Logan Carr year 7 said “He’s my favourite author, can’t be beaten. I was facing similar obstacles to Jamie Johnson’s character but he inspired me to carry on and now I’ve found my real place in a team.”
Students also really enjoyed the Creative Writing Workshop, and Dan inspired some of the students to produce writing above and beyond their everyday work. Several students also presented their writing to the class and each received a copy of a Jamie Johnson book signed by Dan himself!
Two students, Ellie Chipperfield and Kara Tinkler have been chosen to send off their finished draft to Dan to be published on his website. Fantastic work girls!
A great afternoon was had by all! Looking forward to the CBBC series of The Jamie Johnson books on our screens this summer!
The Easter ski trip was a resounding success with forty beginners becoming 40 competent skiers, a feat which required quite a large amount of resilience for some! Our expert skiers also excelled themselves covering as many runs in the various resorts as they could. Beautiful sunny skies, Spring snow conditions and incredible views certainly helped, although the sunshine also produced some great goggle-face tans.
The students were once again great ambassadors for the Academy we received compliments from the hotel staff, the Instructors and also our rep Daryl. As well as their positive attitude for the skiing they also embraced the cultural aspects of the trip with great enthusiasm, learning about the village Radstadt on our Easter-egg hunt history trail, a trip to Mozart’s birthplace in Salzburg and playing a traditional game of Curling.
Four hours of ski lessons a day produced some very competitive races on the Thursday afternoon. The race day winners for the ski groups were, Finlay Ray, Harry Rushden, Lukas Shaw, Lauren Wealleans and the top skier of the trip, our expert, Alex Moody. Not forgetting Mr Richards who retained the staff trophy from last year.
The most improved skier award went to Lily Deng who was promoted to the advanced group after just 3 days! The award for the most use of the German language went to Richard Grey who, amongst other phrases, delighted the kitchen staff by telling them regularly that the meals were ‘sehr, sehr lecker’!
My personal thanks go to the staff, Mr and Mrs Surtees, Mr Richards, Mr Parkin and Mr Carrs, who gave up their holiday to accompany our students on what was at times a challenging trip. I am sure that fantastic memories have been created that will stay with our students a lifetime.
On the 9th of February, twelve of our students from Years 8 and 9 attended the launch event for this year’s Go4SET challenge at Newcastle University. Go4SET, operated by the engineering development trust (EDT), is a ten week project that aims to inspire students and promote science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM) subjects.Although it may sound like a cliche, our students were a real credit to the school. They were polite, enthusiastic, committed and embraced the series of workshops and challenges they partook in over the course of the day. They formed two groups of six and will work closely with myself and a business mentor over the course of the next ten weeks to solve a particular sustainability related challenge. One group will be working with ‘Think Physics’ from Northumbria University on the topic ‘My School is an Island’ and the other with Team Valley-based Palintest aiming to ‘Design an Eco Hotel’.
The project will involve writing a full technical report, producing a display showcasing their ideas and a visit to their business mentor’s place of work. It will culminate in the final celebration day on the 14th of June where they will present their project and compete against other schools from the North-East for an overall prize. It will be a challenging road ahead but based on what I saw at the launch event I am convinced that both teams will do themselves and the academy proud!
Dr Handley, teacher of Chemistry
On Wednesday 9th December the Chemistry department welcomed both of Kells Lane Primary School’s Year 5 classes into the department. The intended learning outcome was to be able to describe different examples of chemical reactions.
We started with a couple of demonstrations that involved sugar turning black then ‘growing’ out of a beaker, followed by a purple flame being produced when potassium manganite (VII) was mixed with glycerol. Both were met with collective ‘Wow’s’. These were both used to emphasise the importance of safety.
Students were then asked to place a copper Christmas tree into a beaker of silver nitrate. As the lesson progressed a displacement reaction took place which resulted in the ‘tree’ looking as if it was covered in silver tinsel. There was lots of ‘Miss, look at it now!!’
The main activity was a class practical to make and test hydrogen gas. It was a challenging activity for a number of them, manipulating the rubber tubing into a test tube under water without letting the water escape so they knew if they had successfully collected hydrogen or not. However, by the end of the session all groups in Luke Handley’s class had achieved a squeaky pop, and all bar one group in mine had. Thankfully at the last minute a group who had had been able to make a number of tubes of hydrogen passed one to the group who hadn’t. The whole class went silent in anticipation, then erupted into a huge cheer, when at last, they managed to get a very loud, squeaky pop.
The session ended with hydrogen rockets, which again were met by cheers. The students were a pleasure to host, all being well mannered, enthusiastic and engaged. Our two year 13 students who assisted were a big help, as was Mr Robinson, who multitasked between taking photos and assisting year 5.
Many local senior citizens joined us once again on Wednesday 2nd December to bring in the Festive cheer at our Christmas Coffee Morning and what a fantastic time we all had. Guests were greeted with beautifully laid tables and first class table service from our Lord Lawson students, and a morning of entertainment, singing with Miss Fisher and the Vocalise choir. Our very own Chris Walton (performer extraordinaire) had the guests singing and smiling from ear to ear and most people were lucky enough to win a prize or two. It is fantastic to see a great generational mix having such fun and enjoying each other’s company. Huge thanks to all our guests and helpers and special thanks to Alison Cooksey and Denise Smith for organising such a great event. Merry Christmas and a very Happy New Year to you all.