Despite the challenges this week has created for us all, our students have once again been absolutely fantastic; returning with enthusiasm and energy. This has been seen everywhere but the pictures below from PE really give you a sense of that enjoyment for learning.
At Plymstock School we recognise the vital role that sport and physical activity play in ensuring physical and mental wellbeing. Therefore we believe that access to quality PE lessons is crucial, now more so than ever.
The Active Lives survey conducted by Sport England has given us strong evidence that active children are happier, more resilient and more trusting of others, as well as having increased concentration levels and better behaviour.
During these uncertain times it is vital to continue to develop positive relationships with sport and physical activity.
The PE department have adapted 4 sports and students in all year groups will be following a carousal of four carefully chosen activities: Football, Netball, Hockey and Table Tennis. These are activities where our teachers have particular strengths and experience; and each sport has a National Governing Body (NGB) who have developed guidance which has been approved by the government.
Some of the activities are pictured below. I would like to take this opportunity to thank the whole PE team led by Mrs Tyrrell, for their energies and enthusiasm. They are making sure our students continue to access this vital activity for their mental and physical health.
Welcome back Year 7
We are pleased to welcome back our Year 7’s to their second half term at Plymstock School. They have all made a fantastic start to secondary life and are excited to be back at school. They are all following a weekly tutor programme with an online assembly every Wednesday, something they all enjoying. The students are enthusiastic to see ‘The Golden Ticket’ winner each week.
This week will see their first transitional progress check which will give a measure on your child’s current progress and effort across a range of subjects.
I am proud of our Year 7 students, the effort they are making and the motivation they demonstrate, considering the difficult challenges we are living through. I hope they continue to ‘Be the best they can be.’
Take care, Mrs Kirk, Head of Year 7
Plymstock School Alumni News
Ex student shortlisted for the Plymouth Laureate of Words
We always like hearing about what our ex-students go on to do and this week we were delighted to be contacted by Laura Horton. Laura is now working as a playwright and a PR in the arts sector. Laura has been shortlisted for the Plymouth Laureate of Words. You may wish to consider voting for Laura. HERE
If she was selected Laura would be the first woman and the first playwright to take the position.
“I believe the arts and literature to be a powerful unifier of people, to entertain, provoke and encourage creativity, combat loneliness and improve mental wellbeing. Plymouth Laureate of Words is important to me as it would enable me to reach out to communities, to teach workshops, run playwriting sessions, enable people to have their work shared and to help illuminate the life, culture and stories of Plymouth. I grew up here and it would be my honour to be the city’s first woman and first playwright in the position.”
With so much uncertainty in all our lives and particularly for our young people, this is an inspiring story of what happens if you follow your dreams. Education is so much more than just examinations.
Laura’s biography is included below and we wish her ever success.
Plymstock School’s own teenage book award ‘HOGWARDS’ continues to thrive against all odds! Due to Lockdown the official judging day (which usually takes place in June) has been moved until the end of this year and will take place virtually.
In the meantime, all 25 students are continuing to read and review the 26 books on the ‘HOGWARDS’ longlist.
Each week, the students taking part have started to share their views and opinions on each of the 26 books, online, on our new ‘HOGWARDS’ webpage
The following students have been the first to contribute and have really impressed us with their hard work and dedication to the process, during these difficult times.
Year 9: Nell H, Ruby T, Emilia S, Olivia J
Year 10: Freya H, Polly T, Eve M, Annie S
Year 11: Max P
I’ve included some screen shots of some of these reviews below. The students are highly discerning and critical and I would like to take this opportunity to thank the library team led by Miss Hogben for inspiring these students and giving them the opportunity to unleash their inner critics!
The virtual library is a fantastic resource and if you haven’t had chance to visit it, please do so. It’s a wonderful example of how we are finding ways to enable our students to continue to be able to access the wider aspects of school life.
All are students of the week and pictured below.
Design and Technology – Food, glorious food!
This week Mrs Worley wanted to celebrate the success of her Year 10 and 11 GCSE Food and Preparation classes.
“Year 10 have been shown how to make a range of dishes in class including vegetable soup, savoury muffins, roasted vegetable quiche and fish cakes, and were asked to make these at home. I have been very impressed by the skills lots of my students have shown, with some practicing their presentation techniques, and they have been keen to show me what they have been cooking. I have attached a few of the photos that I have been emailed.
Year 11 are continuing work on their practice NEA, and this week has seen the first group being allowed to cook in school. They have chosen a country to focus on, and I have attached photos of their end results which have included calzone from Italy, cheese and onion flan with salad from France, ham tart from Austria, baguette from Poland, chicken chasseur with roast potatoes and green beans from France, and pasty with chips from England – lots of impressive cooking skills have been demonstrated with many of these dishes, and I am looking forward to seeing what the rest of the class will be cooking when it is their turn to cook.”
Citizenship – US Presidential Mock Election
Timetabled Life Education lessons had the opportunity to complete a Citizenship lesson focusing on the British value of democracy and voting. They learnt about the US Presidential election between Donald Trump and Joe Biden. Students answered different questions to find out if they were more Republican or Democrat leaning and then learned a little about the background of both candidates and their vice-presidential nominees. Students also watched some of the debates between the candidates before a mock election was held. Tutor groups also had the opportunity to participate in a mock election in tutor time-Joe Biden was the clear winner with 89.4% of the vote.
Not as close a contest as our cousins are having on the other side of the Atlantic. Thank you to Mr Willcocks for organizing this event as part of our citizenship curriculum.
Amy, Poppy and Lizzie all worked extremely hard last year engaging with tasks from their ASDAN programmes. ASDAN is a curriculum development and awarding organisation that helps young people develop knowledge and skills for learning, work and life. All three students will be continuing their ASDAN studies this year, aiming for Silver Awards.
I was delighted to be asked to present Amy’s certificate this week, as we didn’t have the opportunity before half term with Poppy and Lizzie; all three of these hard working students are now pictured below. A fantastic achievement.
October Marathon Challenge
Here are the top three students and staff from the October Marathon Challenge:
- Finnley B (10), 62 miles completed!
- Brendan W (9) 35.2 miles
- Olivia J (9) 30.1 miles
- Jakob T (9) 27.2 miles
- Charlotte Y (9) 26.1 miles
- Mrs Johns
- Mrs Boyle
- Mrs Lowe
Great achievement from all and well done to all of those who completed a personal challenge.
Golden Ticket Winners for the week before half term were:
Year 7 –Callie H
Year 8 – Joe W
Year 9 – Charlotte Y
Year 10 – Dom O’C
Year 11 – Olivia G
6th form – Jacob S
Well done to everyone, Miss Evans
Students of the week
All our winners have demonstrated Endeavour, Resilience and Empathy; Plymstock School students striving to “Be the best you can be”
Our other winners include:
In Year 7
- Charles B-R nominated by Mrs Wilkins for demonstrating resilience and determination to produce an excellent piece of homework’
- Cameron C nominated by all the staff who work with him as they would like to recognise his perseverance, resilience and delightful personality.
- Thomas S nominated by Mr Foor as “he has been brilliant during his EPiC lessons since starting in September. He has shared some brilliant examples of work and is always willing to share his ideas and thoughts with me’’
In Year 8
Ella K nominated by Ms Baker for being an all-round lovely student! Always works to the best of her ability.
In Year 9
- Jess G nominated by Mrs Birchnall for fantastic and consistent use of the BUG technique in her Science lessons and test.
- Nell H, Ruby T, Emilia S and Olivia J all nominated by Miss Hogben as Hogwards contributors mentioned at the start of this blog.
- A second nomination for Olivia J along with Bredan W, Jakob T and Charlotte Y for their success in Mr Bellamy’s October Challenge.
In Year 10
- Joel G nominated by Mrs Johns as he is always engaged in lessons, goes above and beyond when asked to do a task and will offer to help others.
- Kieran G nominated by Mrs Swan for enthusiasm and commitment to his Computer Science GCSE.
- Dominick O’C nominated by Mrs Swan for enthusiasm and commitment to his Computer Science GCSE.
- Jakub F nominated by Mrs Swan enthusiasm and commitment to his Computer Science GCSE.
- Michael A and Sam S nominated by Mrs Worley for the fantastic start they have both made to their GCSE Food course, and their high level of commitment and enthusiasm for every lesson.
- Freya H, Polly T, Eve M and Annie S all nominated by Miss Hogben as Hogwards contributors mentioned at the start of this blog.
- Jay A nominated by Miss Pring – “He has made an amazing start to his GCSE D&T course, contributes in lessons and works hard at every homework and class task.”
- Finnley B nominated by Mr Bellamy for his success in Mr Bellamy’s October Challenge.
In Year 11
- Jack S nominated by Ms Baker for excellent commitment, homework and attitude in French
- Mylo MacK nominated by Ms Baker for excellent commitment, homework and attitude in French
- Matt C nominated by Miss Pring for “simply being outstanding, a model student in every lesson and produces work of the highest quality for every task.”
- Ella B nominated by Mrs Tyrrell as “she has really impressed me this year (and throughout lockdown). She has an excellent attitude to learning, incredible work ethic and is always so supportive of her peers…..an all-round ‘good egg’.”
Louis W nominated by Mrs Wilkins “Tonight he attended a GCSE History revision session and showed how far he is progressing despite his learning challenges. Prior to attending the session he completed a couple of exam essay answers so he could check with me to see how he is doing. He focused this independent study on an area we finished last year to test his knowledge recall as well as his skills. I am so very impressed with his independent learning and care for his GCSE History preparation. He is currently comfortably working on/above his target in areas of the History GCSE which is due entirely to his attitude and hard work.
What a star he is – he really deserves special recognition. Well done Louis”
Post 16 nominations
In Year 12:
- Abi C nominated by Mrs Richards for “The extra work she has been undertaking to improve her German. She has been coming back after school to consolidate her lesson work and I am very proud of her effort!”
- Nathan C nominated by Miss Monelle for “sensible, thoughtful questions in class and a super start to the Maths A level.”
In Year 13:
- Kacie B nominated by Mrs Richardson for achieving 100% in the criminology assessment and putting in the time and effort to fully prepare for it, an outstanding piece of work
- P nominated by Mrs Richardson for achieving 100% in the criminology assessment and putting in the time and effort to fully prepare for it, an outstanding piece of work
Careers Insight – ‘Your Career Journey’
This week we focus on ‘Your Career Journey’, outlining what students will expect to learn/explore in their current year, in relation to Careers.
There are 5 different power points for this week (One for each year group).
The aim is to show students that every year they will gather a new set of skills or develop existing ones that will contribute to the ‘end goal’, whilst highlighting the importance of navigating their own career journey.
The Careers Team
Children in Need and British Legion Poppy Appeal
As many of you will be aware, when you were able to pop into reception, you would have seen the poppies crocheted by Jan Brown our receptionist, sold in support of this important annual appeal. This year Jan has taken on an additional challenge and has come up with a COVID safe way for staff, students and parents to support these appeals through her work if you wish to.
Thank you for the support and generosity that I have had from those members of staff and parents that have already donated money for a poppy/pudsy brooch/keyring to help two very worthy charities.
The poppies have now all gone but I still have plenty of brooches/keyrings and just think for less than the price of a cup of coffee/tea you could be sporting a ‘bespoke’ item which will also be supporting the Children in Need Charity.
Dig deep into those pockets/ let the moths out of those wallets – you know that you want to! E-mail me at email@example.com or phone me on 402679 ext 201 and I can put them to one side for collection at your convenience (students can collect at the end of the school day).
Suggested donations of £2.50 for the brooches and £3.00 for the key rings.
Kind Regards, Jan Brown.
Could you also please note that they are not toys and would not be suitable for small children.
The New Build – Putting on your top hat! – The roof takes shape
You may remember the crane putting in place our roof structure. This week the team from Ryearch have been putting the finishing touches to the start of the process to make the building watertight. Work continues at a pace and everything is on schedule for the classrooms to be handed over in April 2021.