On Wednesday 11 October, all pupils in school participated in our first ‘Extended Learning Day’ of the academic year.
Year 7 took part in activities led by RE, Chaplaincy, Food Technology, Art and Music on the theme of the Catholic Church. During the day all pupils had the opportunity to travel to St Walburge’s church and have a tour looking at the significant features of the architecture as well as examples of vestments and vessels used at mass. Pupils also had a session with the chaplaincy team looking at the importance of the eucharist and introducing pupils to the Faith in Action Award. Following this, all pupils went to music and had an experience of singing Gregorian chant and mass parts. Finally, pupils either went to art and made stained-glass windows or went to food technology to make hot cross buns, and learned about their meaning and symbolism.
Year 8 had a varied ‘Industry and Careers Day’ with workshops aimed at building teamwork, problem solving, and learning about various professions. Future U asked pupils to work in groups to develop their own smoothie brand and to promote it to their peers in a presentation. ‘The Eric Wright Foundation’ ran workshops giving pupils the opportunity to develop their teamwork, organisation and planning skills. Pupils learnt about the various careers available in the field of construction before working in teams to build a bridge. Each team were given lego pieces, all varying in price, with each team member given a specific role such as ‘quantity surveyor’, responsible for the costing of the bridge and a project. The bridges were strength tested and priced to find the winning team. Another workshop, led by a guest speaker from ‘Lancashire Teaching Hospitals NHS trust’, began by testing pupils’ knowledge in a quiz before learning more about the various career opportunities in the NHS.
Year 9 pupils spent the day in the Science department, exploring Space. Pupils watched a video about the deadliest planets in our solar system before creating a replica to-scale solar system to appreciate the distances involved. Pupils were then tasked with creating a ‘Mars Rover’ (a balloon car) and a ‘Mars Lander’ using limited materials. There was an exciting ‘Mars Lander’ parachute drop to test each lander, and a unique race-off between the best Mars Rover, with house points on offer to the winning teams.
Year 10 explored the wide-ranging topic of Online Safety, focusing on the ‘Four C’s’ – Content, Commerce, Conduct and Contact. These included sessions focused on what is posted online , the risks from actions involving money, behaving in an appropriate manner online and the risks which young people may face when interacting with others online. The day culminated in a debate about which of the four C’s are most relevant to their year group and why, and which topic should be taught to younger pupils.
Year 11 were engaged in the planning and writing of a speech looking at a current topical issue. Pupils analysed articles dealing with both sides of the argument before being tasked with writing their own account for or against the proposal, using both the evidence presented and their persuasive writing skills developed during the day.