Last Sunday the school’s Greenpower Motorsport team set off after a very early start to take part in their first ever race at Castle Combe race track in Wiltshire. Despite leaving the school at 5.00am the team were enthusiastic and full of energy throughout the day, pitting their wits against 56 other teams from around the country. Getting to the race was a fantastic achievement for the team; they have built it to a high standard in a short space of time. Seeing the car on the track for the initial practice session with Oliver Westwood at the wheel made them realise that they had achieved something fantastic. Disaster nearly struck when the telemetry system showed that the drive motor’s temperature was rising rapidly, reaching 55 degrees and climbing before the end of practice. A similar issue had plagued the car before. Quick action had to be taken to ensure that the car could last a race. A body modification was hastily completed in time to take to the grid for race 1. 57 cars took to the grid, 23 of which were in our class and three were competing for their first time. Could we finish the race? Could we beat some cars in our class? Could we be top rookie? Could we beat Newton Abbot College, our closest geographical rival?
Early data showed that we were lapping at a respectable rate and we quickly found ourselves in around 40th place. Quite respectable for our first outing. As time progressed we continued to maintain a good pace. At the end of the first race we were placed 39 out of 57 overall, 13 of 23 in class and the fastest rookie. The on-board monitoring showed that the motor temperature had stabilised at 44 degrees.
With the car back in the pits a quick inspection revealed no issues except a little wear on the left hand tyres; expected after an hour and a half on a clockwise circuit. They were swapped left to right in time for race 2. This time out we managed to go even further, finishing a fantastic 37th and were once again the fastest newcomers. The drivers covered a whopping 53.7 miles! Much experience was gained and a great benchmark was established to build upon in 2019. If you are curious, we also beat Newton Abbot College by some distance in both races.
6th Form in the Study Centre
Our Study Centre is a wonderful place to learn. 6th Formers are timetabled in there where they complete work packs provided by their teachers.
Creative Arts Department
It’s been a busy week in the Creative Arts department, in addition to the Performing Arts Academy auditions on Tuesday and Thursday, on Wednesday we held auditions for our exclusive Music Academy. Because we have so many talented musicians in our school competition for places in the Music Academy is extremely high. Therefore our music department carries out a pre-selection process before inviting a select number of students to audition for a place. This year 10 students received an invite to audition for the opportunity to join existing Academy members. The Music Academy aims to offer opportunities to the most talented musicians in our school that go even further beyond what we can offer in our curriculum lessons. These include workshops and performance opportunities with professional musicians, recording and production sessions and songwriting. We hope to publish this year’s Music Academy members in next week’s blog
New Music Suite
We continue to ensure that our students have access to the latest industry standard facilities here at TA. This week the building of a new Mac Suite, filled with 32 iMac computers was completed. I have shared on the blog some of the incredible work of boys and girls; with this new facility I know it won’t be long until I have some more to share with you (see below for Cameron’s amazing audio score).
Adjacent to the Mac Suite is a new recording studio. We are waiting for the final pieces of digital recording equipment to arrive – I will share images of the studio when it has been completed.
Y13 Music Student Cameron Westwood
During the summer term and continuing into September, the sixth form Music Technology students have been working on individual compositions for film and animation. The class have really absorbed themselves into their task and have produced incredible work that is due for a screening for students in the coming weeks. This particular piece of work by Cameron Westwood in Year 13 is an outstanding piece of work with meticulous attention to detail utilising both diagetic (sound occurring on the screen) and non-diagetic (sound that is not implied by the visual) sounds to staggering impact. Cameron score for Pixar’s short-animation ‘Lifted’ was made in Logic Pro X using both MIDI and audio sound sources.
Performing Arts Academy
On Tuesday and Thursday over 40 students rushed to the drama studio after school eager to impress and gain a place in our prestigious PAA. The students were put through their paces with various activities, some of which included learning new dances and songs. We have been extremely impressed with the standard and attitude of all the students who have auditioned this year and there will be some very tough decisions to be made over the coming few days. Miss Pappin tells me she hopes to post a list of the final PAA members in next week’s blog.
I was impressed to see Year 7 students developing skills in food and cookery as part of their Design & Technology course. They were able to independently cook American style pancakes, carefully moderating the heat to ensure the pancakes didn’t burn. Students were also able to explain to me how the recipe had been modified to make it healthier with the addition of fruit to give natural sweetness. I even saw them doing the washing up afterwards!
The European Day of Languages
To celebrate the European Day of Languages we have run a series of special assemblies this week with the help of Mr Clark and the MFL department. As part of the assembly, students whose mother tongue is not English spoke to the assembly in their native language. It opened many our of student’s eyes as to how many different languages are spoken at TA!
Maths Department Running Event
Outside of the usual planning lessons, marking books and data analysis, last Saturday the Maths department took part in their first ‘Ultra’ running event. The 6 hour relay race took place at the Double Locks Pub in Exeter and turned out to be an extremely successful event for the first outing of ‘Who ate all the pies?’ Spurred on by the shiny medal and cream tea, and without much training, the team, in the form of Mrs Scagell, Mr Gratton, Mr Beswetherick and Mr Jenner, completed 47 miles in the 6 hours which was enough to win the inaugural Cream Tea Caper. They are now planning to conquer more running events across the South West.
Team TA sports Roundup
Triathlon and Cycling
Angus Graham, in Year 8, appears to have continued where he left off last year as he has been busy on both the cycling and triathlon front. Two weeks ago he took part in his first Sportive event in the Moor2Sea ride starting at Exeter Racecourse and cycling 34 miles on the Inspire Route up to Exmouth, Teignmouth, Bovey Tracey, Chudleigh and returning to the racecourse along with about 1000 other cyclists. He followed this up with an excellent 1st place in the Sportiva Torbay Triathlon last weekend, in the Tristar category against some very tough competition. Well done, Angus.
On Monday 17th September, the Year 10 netball team had their first central venue league tournament of the year. We played two games and the girls looked very promising from the start. The first game against Totnes Progressive school ended with a win of 6-2. The girls played well and were finding it easy to get the ball into the circle.
Our second game against Spires was a lot more challenging. We had a similar game plan to the first game. However, Spires looked to be a more developed team. We were down by three goals at halftime but managed to get it back to within 1 with 30 seconds to go. Unfortunately we ran out of time to equalise but I think when we meet them again we will be more prepared to go out strong from the start. End result 5-6. Player of the day – Mya Miles for outstanding shooting in both games.
Year 7 played TGGS Thursday 20th September. This was the girls first outing this year and we had only had one training session prior to this game so we did not know what to expect from it. The girls started off well and managed to keep up with TGGS style of play. We were moving the ball up the court well, which gave Elisha and Issy the opportunity to score. At halftime the girls were down by 2 goals. After a tactical chat, the girls went back on, only to go down by a further two goals. At this point, it was looking as though the girls were going to lose the game by quite a few goals. But then we weren’t banking on the sheer grit effort and resilience the girls were willing to put in. They started to fight back and with every goal they scored, it put them closer to a result we would have wanted. With 10 seconds to go and still one goal down, the girls managed to get the ball into the circle and equalise just on the whistle. The final score 8-8, which was a great result as the girls deserved not to lose. I think with another minute on the clock the TA would have brought home a win!
Well done to Lola Green for player of the match.
Kacy Fairhurst and Antonia Standen both graded on Sunday 16th September at Torbay Leisure Centre. Kacy was going for her black tag and Antonia was going for her red tag. Both girls worked extremely hard and on Wednesday 19th September, they were both presented with their new belts. Well done, girls!
Rise & Read
This week saw the return of our hugely successful Rise and Read programme, which this year due to popular demand has been expanded to include Year 8s. The students enjoy the opportunity to meet in groups with their peers and have their breakfast whilst reading a book together. This gives the children a calm and relaxed start to the day, at the same time as inspiring a love of reading with all the benefits regular reading brings to the student’s literacy skills. Please contact Mr White or Mrs Rowan for more details.
Year 7 at BGT Auditions
Year 7 student Sonny Jackson auditioned for Britain’s Got Talent on Sun 2nd Sept in The Cinnabar. Then on Friday 7th, again in The Cinnabar he performed for a charity event and raised £150 in donations. As you can see he is a huge Michael Jackson fan. We will keep our fingers crossed for him to get further in the competition.
Students of the week
Students of the week this week with me, Mr Chadwick and Mrs Hosking are; Y9 Mya Edralin, Y11 Liam Mugliston, Y13 Dom Ho, Y7 Matilda Bindon, Y12 Lilly Holloway, Y10 Owen Morgan, Y8 Maddy Brewer
We now have concrete foundation in the dining hall extension. The new classroom block has had the block paving in front of completed. We will be able to use the two new changing rooms and classroom from next week.