New Roles of Responsibility Awarded to Students in Y7

Year 7 Rewarded with Roles of Responsibility

Our Year 7 students have settled in fantastically well over the past 7 weeks, displaying a host of qualities that have made them a pleasure to have in our school community.

Mr Jones, Progress Leader for Year 7, has consulted with Year 7 teachers and students and received lots of nominations and applications to fulfil the following new student roles in the year group:

Year 7 Prefect:
Responsible for: Supporting duties on behalf of the school/year group, particularly break & lunchtimes. Involved in the organisation and running of year group/whole school events

Student Council Representative:
Responsible for: Student voice. Raising issues and concerns from tutor group with staff at regular whole school and year group meetings.

Tutor Assistant:
Responsible for: Assisting form tutor/teachers when necessary and supporting Prefects at various times

Responsible for: Supporting and caring for peers at break and lunchtime. Integrating students on their own, help resolve conflicts and be someone to talk to when needed

Eco Council Representative:
Responsible for: Running environmental initiatives around school and for ensuring Y7 area is kept tidy, respected and litter free

Sports Captain:
Responsible for: Assisting the PE department in organising inter-tutor teams and competitions

Pictured: Students after collecting their badges during assembly this week


Half Term Whole School Assembly

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Pictured: Cameron Knowles and Ellie Piper during the Whole school assembly

The end of this half term finished with a whole school assembly in which I thanked our students and staff for starting the school year on such a high.

Some of our Year 10 students also shared their recent visit to France where they took part in commemorating the100 year anniversary of World War One. Their account of their visit can be read below.

Stories from the blog were also shared with the school to celebrate the diversity and outstanding achievement that takes place on a daily basis at TA. I have also sent you my blog highlights from this half term, which encapsulates what a hive of activity Torquay Academy is. I hope you enjoy reading about our school and what we get up to on a weekly basis.



Year 10 Students Commemorate WWI 100 year Anniversary

On Friday we left Torquay for the Battlefields of WW1 with Miss Cape. The trip was part of a government programme to commemorate the 100 year anniversary of World War One. We spent the first night at Ashford taking part in team building activities, researching the life of the WW1 soldier we had been given and handling a range of objects. We also got the chance to spend time with current serving soldiers who answered our questions.

After an early start on Saturday, we arrived in sunny France. Our first stop was the Memorial Museum in Passchendale. We moved on to visit Tyne Cot cemetery. Here we found our soldier’s grave stone and had time to walk around the memorial for the 35,000 thousand soldiers who have not been found. In the afternoon we visited a German cemetery which was very different from the British ones. The grave stones were black and it had a mass grave for 14,000 German soldiers. After a quick stop for food at the hotel we were taken to the Mein Gate to watch the Last Post Memorial which takes part every night at 8pm. There were thousands of people gathered to listen to Buglers play the Last Post and pay tribute to those who had lost their life.

Sunday saw us travel to the Somme in France and focus on the experiences of the Devonshire regiment. We visited the Devonshire cemetery and learnt about how thousands of men died in one day before we went to Thiepval and found the names of six men from Torquay who do not have a grave.

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On our final day we visited the death cells in Poperinge and In Flanders Field museum before catching the Euro Star back to England for a very, very long drive home!

Miss Cape was thrilled with the students’ involvement, telling me “They were fantastic ambassadors for the academy and I look forward to working with them on the Academy’s World War One commemorative project (More information to follow after half term). If you know of any relatives from the Torquay area involved in WW1 we would love to hear from you. Please email me at the Academy.”



Year 11 Media Studies

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Pictured: Students enjoying a lesson outside of the classroom

In preparation for their exam topic, News, Year 11 Media Studies students were thinking outside of the classroom to complete a task set by their teacher Mr Heartford.

Students worked in small groups in our atrium and were given the task of prioritising a list of news stories based on audience perspective i.e. Children – Newsround, Adults – 10pm broadcast and a 24 hour rolling news channel.

Students had to prioritise the news and display it in a timeline (pictured). Year 11 student Henry Shout said “The way Mr Heartford planned the lesson for us to work outside of the classroom made it really fun. Trying to think about which stories were more important to different audience was quite tricky.”



Mrs Hammond Receives Homework in the form of Cake

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Pictured: (left) year 7 student, Hannah Wood and (right) Mrs Hammond

Mrs Hammond was delighted to receive the homework of Hannah Wood (pictured) this week as she decided to make her a chocolate sponge cake.

Hannah chose a task from Mrs Hammond’s homework ‘takeaway menu’ and decided to make the cake in the form of a plant cell.

Mrs Hammond said “I was blown away with the detail of Hannah’s cake model; she even used green gummy bears to model the chloroplast in a plant cell.”

Hannah said “Making a cake made me use my imagination and helped me to understand what a plant cell is made of. I have never baked a cake on my own before so was really happy with how it turned out.”



PE Dance Leaders

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Pictured: Our Year 11 Dance Leaders in their brand new dance tops

Our Year 11 dance Leaders have spent this half term learning how to choreograph dance routines that are appropriate for primary school children, so that after half term, they can begin to lead sessions around the bay.

Dance Teacher, Mrs Knowles, said “The girls have embraced the course and shown great willing to learn the necessary skills and techniques to allow them to deliver the Primary School sessions.”

Year 11 Dance leader, Livvie Palmer, is enjoying the course so far and said “It’s really good. I love working with children and I’m looking forward to delivering the sessions in primary schools next term. Mrs Knowles has been really motivational and has made it really fun.”



Sherwell Valley Year 5 Students Visit Library and Science Labs

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Pictured: On the hunt for knowledge

Continuing to develop our Primary school links, we invited Year 5 students from Sherwell Valley to school today to learn valuable research skills in our library and then they took part in some practical experiments in our Science labs.

Mr Withers led the literacy sessions in our library and had students fact finding using the hundreds of books we have. Mr Withers said “The students are not used to having access to so many books and were really enthusiastic when filling in their fact finding task sheets. Building important research skills during visits like these are really beneficial to the students.”



Fairfields Students ‘Feeling’ the Autumn Weather

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Pictured: Students taking pictures of leaves in the school grounds

Mrs Haines and our Fairfields students took to the school grounds to find some Autumnal inspiration for a class project.

Students were tasked with taking photos of all things autumnal so they could use the photos in class.

After taking lots of pictures, students then went back to class and wrote descriptive pieces of writing; in doing so, they were improving their literacy and communication skills, whilst exploring new descriptive words that they can now add to their vocabulary.

Mrs Haines said “Having an interesting topic, which is a bit unusual to the students encourages them to think outside of the box and use descriptive words that they may not have otherwise used”.



Year 12 students Learn the Value of Health & Social Care

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Pictured: Year 12 students struggling to make a jam sandwich

Year 12 Health & Social students took part in a challenging lesson this week, as they replicated some of the difficulties people face during their day to day lives, including living with visual impairment and physical disabilities.

The lesson highlighted the value of Health & Social Care and although the students had fun trying to complete a simple task such as making a jam sandwich with impartial or no sight (pictured), the reality of having these issues 24/7 really hit home with the girls.



Year 7 Handwriting Club

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Pictured: Year 7 students practising handwriting at the new Handwriting lunch club

Mrs Jukes started a new Year 7 handwriting lunch club this week and would like to invite more Year 7’s to join her.

Every Tuesday lunch time in room E10, you can practise your handwriting with Mrs Jukes and your friends. Mrs Jukes has a range of different pens and font styles for you to practise and is more than happy to tailor the lunch club around your needs. The club can suit almost any purpose including: joined up writing and letters, speed writing, different font styles and trialling different pens.

Mrs Jukes said “It’s important for students to take pride in the way that they present their work. Improving handwriting speed and legibility will certainly help students whilst completing work, especially during exams.”

Year 7 student, Lauren Courtenay was practising Victorian Font and said “I like the club because it’s peaceful and I can learn to write in lots of different fonts.”



Music Exams

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Pictured: Miss Pappin with students during a performance this week

Our Year 11 students performed their examination pieces for Miss Pappin this week. They had to undertake both an individual and group performance. Miss Pappin was delighted with the high quality of their performances. I would like to thank Miss Pappin and Mr Matthew for the huge amount of time they have spent this week ensuring all of the performances went off without a hitch.



Attendance Workshop

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Pictured: Students during an attendance workshop earlier this week.

Mrs Gisburn and Mrs Baker invited students to an attendance workshop this week with the aim of explaining the benefits of high attendance and the consequences of poor attendance.

With attendance so closely linked to academic achievement, the workshop allowed the girls and boys to discuss the importance of high attendance and ways in which they can support their fellow students throughout the school with attendance related issues.

Year 9 student, Kayleigh Hyde, attended the workshop and said “I learned how having lots of time off school can affect your friendships and exam grades.”



100% Attendance Celebrated

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Pictured: Our 100% attenders from last term after I presented them with their attendance awards

I was delighted to present 20 of our students with 100% attendance awards this week. As I so often talk to students about marginal gains and making every second and minute of the day count, the students I met with this week are shining examples of this culture and are great role models to the whole school community.

100% attendance means that these students are accessing 100% of the school curriculum and are taking full advantage of their education. Well done!



Year 8 Parents’ Evening

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Pictured: Our year 11 prefects and students helpers ready to greet parents at this week’s Year 8 Parents’ Evening

We enjoyed another fantastic Parents’ Evening this week as Year 8 students and their parents spent the evening chatting to teachers and discussing the progress made this half term.

Another highly attended evening ran smoothly thanks to our Year 11 prefects and student helpers who were on hand to greet parents, direct them to their appointments and even serving refreshments. Thank you for your help; I know the parents and teachers really valued your support.



Year 7 Netball

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Pictured: Our Year 7 Netball Team

The Year 7 netball team travelled to Teignmouth Community College on Wednesday to take part in a netball competition. With all year 7 girls excited to put what they have learnt through lessons and after school clubs into practice the team selection was quite tough.

We started off the competition with a close game against St Cuthbert Mayne where we just missed out on the win with a late goal from STCM which meant they won 2-1.

The girls were warmed up and ready to play and were demonstrating some fantastic team work and support for each other on court.

Throughout the tournament they just got better and better and ended up winning 2 drawing 1 and losing 3 which resulted in them finishing 5th in the competition.

Excellent performances from Libby Kenneford and Ella Squib and a lot of potential from other players which I’m sure will keep this season full of excitement.

Well done girls you were a credit to the Academy.