A very happy Easter to everyone. We have now just completed two-thirds of the school year. Time really has flown by this year and I thank you all for your continued support of Plymstock School.
We start this week with a unique photo of one of our students. Amber, currently in our Sixth Form, is also the Lord Mayor’s Cadet for Plymouth. Whilst the queen was in the city on Tuesday for the decommissioning of HMS Ocean, Amber managed to get a face to face meeting, as she presented the Queen with flowers. I think it’s a really great photo to start this week’s packed blog off with.
Vienna was the destination for a Westcountry Schools Trust visit last weekend which saw four students from Plymstock School and three students from Ivybridge Community College travel to the Austrian capital to watch a performance of their A level German set text ‘Der Besuch der Alten Dame’. The Dürrenmatt play was being staged as an opera at the historic ‘Theater an der Wien’, famous for hosting many of Beethoven’s premieres.
After a lovely visit to the aquarium, the staff and students were eager to make the most of their short stay by exploring the beautiful city centre on foot. Despite the freezing temperatures, a walking tour in German gave the students an invaluable opportunity to practise their listening skills, whilst learning about the fascinating history surrounding them.
Of course no visit to Vienna, the home of the Sachertorte, would be complete without a stop at one of the traditional Viennese coffee houses for a hot drink and delicious slice of cake.
Finally, Sunday evening brought the main excursion and armed with their copy of the play, the students headed to the theatre. The performance was quirky and dynamic; provoking much discussion on the journey home about everything from the costumes, to the bits they had left out!
The visit was a huge success and Mrs Richards and Mrs Bindon were incredibly impressed by the impeccable standards set by the students during every part of the trip. They were enthusiastic, polite and took every opportunity to practise and develop their language skills. It was fantastic to have the opportunity to collaborate and we hope this is the first of many joint ventures between schools in our Westcountry Schools Trust.
We have just completed our British Science Week 2018 poster competition. The quality of the competition entries was fantastic. Five posters were chosen to enter the national competition. The overall poster winner for Plymstock School (Picture 1) was Jessica, picked for the quality of information, images and overall design. Well done Jess.
The runners up were (Photo 2):
- Top right: Emily
- Bottom: Destine and Dedan
- Top middle: Thalia Clark, Kaitlin and Holly
- Top left: Rhiannon Baker and Abi
The next competition (the Egg Space Re-entry Challenge) was tense but ultimately it was the engineering skills and design flair that allowed the following two groups to win. Not only did their eggs survive, but their designs were the lightest. The winning teams were:
- Jack M, Jack W and Toby W
- Georgia E, Holly W and Amelia E.
Additionally, many tutor groups entered the Science Week Tutor Quiz. Congratulations go to S7 AHW (you must now look after your tutor mascot until Year 11) and to A11 TJW (We hope you enjoyed your Bush Tucker Trial style prize, as demonstrated by Kiera in the final photo (tasty salt and vinegar crickets!)).
Our Year 12 Sociology students have been embracing their creative sides! The class have been learning different sociological perspectives on the family and to consolidate their learning they were given a challenge. Each group had to choose one perspective and produce a creative piece of work to demonstrate their understanding, which they all enthusiastically threw themselves into. Cartoon strips were created, board games were produced, poems were performed and there was even a feminist remix of ‘Drop It Like It’s Hot’ from the ‘Snoopettes’…watch this space…their album will be dropping early next year!
Last week was a great week for sport at Plymstock School. In support of Sport Relief we focused on increasing participation and inspiring students to try something new. During PE lessons students increased their steps by running a mile around the perimeter of the school. Although the focus was mainly on participation, some of our students could not resist a little competition.
Here are the fastest boys and girls in each year group:
- Year 7 – Tom U (6:09) and Eve M (6:11)
- Year 8 – Tom E (6:11) and Maria E (6:44)
- Year 9 – William H (6:05) and Kate P (6:29)
- Year 10 – Jacob G (5:50) and Ebony C (7:01)
- Year 11 – Ryan P (5:27) and Lucy P (6:36)
The week culminated on Friday with a sport/red-themed mufti day and a lunchtime sports extravaganza! There were a wide variety of events and taster sessions run by the PE department, which were supported by some elite athletes from across the city. Here are some of the events and the winners from the competitions:
- Dan Pullinger from Plymouth Albion supported the rugby conversion competition won by Harvey L with 5/5 conversions.
- The Plymouth Argyle Ladies ran a penalty shoot out against the Argyle Ladies Goalkeeper, Michaela Phillips. The winner was Pacey K.
- Raiders and GB basketball player Zak Wells supported the ‘2-ball’ shoot out. Joint winners were Harry M/Maks J, and Jamie C/Jake H.
- The Netball shootout was supported by Amy Stoddard from Plymouth Pilgrims and won by Eve M.
- The Hockey shoot out against Mr Taylor in goal was very popular (he was particularly brave to stand in the way of some of those shots) and the winners were Joe T and Cathan W.
- The target shooting was won by Lloyd F.
In addition to this we had taster sessions from Paul Jordan at Staddon Heights Golf Club and Ross Taylor from Drake’s Judo Club. Both activities were really fun and very popular. Ross has volunteered to run a FREE Judo club on Tuesday’s after school at Plymstock, which is due to start after Easter. If you are interested then watch this space! Myself and Mrs Dover even dusted off our Judo suits and sparred off in a ‘clash of the titans’ bout (as shown in the last photo).
A special thank you goes to the PE department for their efforts in organising the events and to everyone, especially the elite athletes, who supported the day. It was a great success and lots of fun. To top it off, we managed to raise a whopping £1082 for Sport Relief.
Rebecca in Year 9 has just completed her first official Standard Bearer Role for the MKC (Military Kids Choir) Heroes as an Ambassador last Sunday. It was for the Lord Mayor’s Civic Service held at St Mary’s and All Saints Church in Plymstock. Rebecca did a great job. Her next engagement will be in Torpoint in May, which will be followed by Lord Mayor’s Day.
Also over the previous weekend, two of our students competed in BMC Youth Climbing Series in Exeter – Imogen in Year 8 and Eleanor in Year 9.
Imogen (the first photo below) was taking part in her first climbing competition for the Dart Rock Climbing Team. She came 11th overall, which she was really pleased with as this was her first event. Well done Imogen.
Eleanor (photo two), who has appeared in previous blogs, maintained her recent good form and finished 4th overall, narrowly missing out in a place at the national final in Edinburgh, which marks the culmination of the youth sports climbing calendar. Eleanor has made amazing progress this year, showing real determination and confidence on difficult routes up 16 metres high! Well done to you too Eleanor.
Two of our Year 9 students have been experiencing some great success in the sporting world. Firstly, we congratulate Alfie, who has just been selected for the West Devon Rugby Squad, and will be competing in his first competition for them shortly. Best of luck Alfie – you’ll be brilliant.
Secondly, we offer our congratulations to Sophie, who you may recall from previous blogs is a rising star in the world of archery. Well, she’s continued to go from strength to strength, being crowned the Devon and Cornwall Indoor Under 15 Champion, winning a gold medal for the Exmouth Archers, being selected for the county team and is now ranked joint second in South West. Well done Sophie – an incredible set of achievements.
In a recent competition held at the Plymouth Life Centre, Georgia in Year 8, swam 100 metres backstroke and achieved just one second off a regional time! Then, immediately after this, she had to swim a 200m butterfly and gained a bronze medal. Georgia swims for DRSA (Devonport Royal Swimming Association) and trains six days a week for this, including getting up at 6am on a Sunday! Well done Georgia.
It’s student of the week time and we start with Year 7. Our winner is Harry. He has just submitted his Castle Project that he completed for Mr Willcocks in History. Harry did this in a completely different way to anything we have seen before. He designed his project using CAD software and then using a 3D printer made the castle. He even filmed the process using time-lapse photography to make a video – which you can see below. Amazing!
Congratulations go to Leah in Year 8 who has just qualified for the National Sportshall Finals for indoor athletics (and is our Year 8 student of the week). She recently represented Devon with her Under 13 team and won, meaning they will now represent the South West in Manchester over Easter. The standing triple jump was Leah’s main event but she also competed in the relays. Well done Leah and we wish you the best of luck over Easter.
Our Year 9 student of the week is Ross, who has shown real improvement in school this term. He has been listening to staff advice, maximising his effort, engaging fully with his work and asking questions to stretch himself. As a result, his confidence has really grown. Keep up the good work Ross.
George is our Year 10 student of the week. George is a really great Plymstock School student. He is hard working, polite, positive and a credit to the school. He has also transferred these skills into the world of Scouts, having recently been selected to be a representative at the World Scout Jamboree in the USA in August 2019. Well done George.
Our Year 11 student of the week is Bart. In the words of his Head of Year – “Bart is an all-round legend”. Bart was captain of the winning Year 11 tug-o-war team, is a role model, an outstanding sportsperson and a real exemplary Plymstock School student. Well done Bart. Unfortunately, I was unable to catch up with Bart for a photo – so here’s his certificate.