On Friday 28 January all pupils took part in our third ‘Extended Learning Day’ of the academic year. Extended Learning Days provide enrichment to the curriculum and facilitate a greater variety of learning experiences for pupils by engaging with topical issues, learning about the wider world, providing help and guidance for the future, whilst also allowing to develop essential skills such as teamwork, problem solving and self-confidence.
Year 7 took part in a very engaging history day concentrated on Medieval England, particularly castles and heraldry from over 1,000 years ago. Pupils were asked to build a model medieval castle and in art they had to design a Heraldic Shield. Medieval food was also explored with pupils learning about the types of meals that people of different classes might have eaten, cooking pottage (a traditional soup/ stew), oatcakes and a non-alcoholic mulled wine.
Science and Religious Education was the focus of learning as pupils visited The Science and Industry Museum and the Jewish Museum in Manchester. The whole year group managed to visit both museums. Whilst visiting the recently refurbished Jewish Museum, pupils learnt about the Jewish faith, explored Manchester’s rich and diverse Jewish history and looked at universal themes of Journeys, Communities and Identities. Pupils were able to appreciate different places of worship, visiting the Spanish and Portuguese Synagogue. Pupils then explored 250 years of innovations and ideas that started life in Manchester and went on to change the world in the Science and Industry Museum. They looked at industrial innovations, scientific discoveries and saw how the city’s heritage is interwoven with the cotton industry in the Textiles Gallery.
Activities based around Careers provided our Year 9 pupils with information and resources to help decide on their Options. It began with an introduction in the Hall from Mr Warham who advised pupils to think carefully and consider what they are good at, what they think they will enjoy and the career opportunities when choosing their options. Pupils took part in workshops from external providers such as ‘Future U’, who gave guidance on revision and study skills. Careers advisors helped to support pupils in trying to discern what their road ahead might be, with further education providers from Preston and Newman College on hand to answer any questions. They also visited an ‘Options Carousel’ in the sports hall, where Year 9 pupils had the opportunity to speak to Year 10 pupils already studying the various option subjects and ask their peers about a subject, what they like about it and how they see that subject helping them move towards their career aspirations.
Year 10 explored the topic of ‘Prevent’. Prevent is one of the four strands of CONTEST, which is the UK Government’s Counter-Terrorism strategy. Pupils explored how people can be drawn into radicalism, and how we can look to eliminate it by building community cohesion. They looked at case studies and their previous opinions about radicalism and terrorism were challenged, in particular in terms of who is responsible for it and how, where and when it takes place. Pupils discussed some controversial and emotive topics, but listened and respected each other’s opinions in a mature manner, remembering that our approach towards each other and everything we do has the Gospel values at their core.
Mathematics was the subject focus for our year 11 pupils, working in their sets, they started the day with a revision session incorporating the topics on their Mock Assessment. Then they tested their knowledge by completing Assessment Paper 3, before ending the day by looking at revision techniques.