This week should have been the performances of our Year 7 production, Annie. I was so disappointed for the students who have worked so hard this year and having to have the two cancel the live performances. Instead of the live performances, the students performed during the school day in front of a professional filming company who will be making a recording of the show for the students and their families. I cannot wait to see the final recording. It was such a privilege to see our amazingly talented boys and girls perform on the stage.
Performing Arts Review
Also due to take place over two nights was a review by the Years 8-11 Performing Arts Academy. The performances they had perfected were also recorded and we will be sharing those videos in the new academic year. The performances were simply brilliant!
Josh scores his first 50 for Devon!
Josh Thompson, in Year 9, played in his first Devon cricket match of the season on Sunday in a tense game against Dorset. Josh has been playing for Devon for the last four seasons and had never played in a game quite like this one! Dorset posted 157 runs for 8 wickets in their 40 overs.
Devon lost their first 5 wickets for just 19 runs so when Josh came to the crease there was immense pressure on him and his partner to rebuild the innings. Josh started by hitting a cover drive for four and then went about hitting 55 runs in 34 balls. This included 3 big sixes and 6 fours. He was part of a 86 run partnership, which helped to take the game away from Dorset.
When rain eventually stopped played Devon were 105 for 5 and they won on the Duckworth Lewis Method. Well done, Josh!
Harry signs for Exeter
Year 11 goalkeeper, Harry Lee, has signed a professional contract for Exeter City. We are very proud of Harry and wish him the very best of luck as he starts his professional football career.
Year 7 students have been using the school drone over the last few days as it has been taken out for a spin in readiness for filming the action of our sports days next week. You can see they were able to take some great shots of the school buildings, busy Automotive students and themselves!
Year 8 GCSE Product Design
Year 8 students have been really enjoying their GCSE Product Design taster lessons including laser cutting photo frames in environmentally friendly and sustainable bamboo and their own block bot desk tidy characters. Here we see Daisy Gibbings carefully painting her intricate frame, the very detailed photo frame made by Harvey Thomas and the superbly characterful block bot from Jake Pettit. Well done, everyone.
Year 9 DofE Bronze Award qualifying expedition
Congratulations to the 21 Year 9 students who last weekend completed their Qualifying Expedition for their Duke of Edinburgh Bronze Awards. The students had spent the last four Monday afternoons after school getting into expedition groups, mapping their routes, discussing and planning menus and gathering kit for the main event. They had also attended a Practice Expedition two weeks previously that had given them a taste of things to come and had given them a chance to make the usual mistakes, such as packing way too much food and too many clothes!
So it was with a lot of excitement- and with a little trepidation for some too – that they arrived at school at 8.30am Saturday morning to add essential kit, such as tents, compasses, first aid kits, etc. to their rucksacks. The weather had been beautiful the previous week but typically the forecast for the weekend was for showers – although that was still an improvement from the forecast that had been made the day before that promised thunderstorms for the Saturday!
Once the tents were packed and maps and route cards that the teams had prepared were issued, both minibuses set off for Bantham. Day 1 of the expedition the teams had to journey from Bantham to Higher Rew Farm campsite near Salcombe, a walk of almost 14km up and down steep sections of the coast path. Mr Adams had (kindly!) set the teams a challenge to plan sections of their route to come away from the coast path, having shown some promising navigational skills on the practice expedition.
With a few small deviations from their routes each team made it to the campsite, all very tired but in good spirits. The tiredness dissipated somewhat after they had set up their tents and cooked themselves a hot meal on their Trangia stoves, and they even had energy for some camp games! Some impressive culinary delights were created – with Team 4 cooking some pasta in sauce with spicy sausage cut up and cooked with the sauce for flavour, followed by a dessert of broken up biscuits in cold custard!
Despite the rain overnight, the students remained dry indicating that they had been proficient in setting up their tents, and some of them rose early, around 6.15am. With breakfast made in between showers, and packing tents away in another particularly heavy shower the teams were ready to depart between 8.30 and 9.30am. Having explained routes and plans to their Assessors the teams set off in 30 minute intervals. Some teams had a target destination of East Prawle and one team had ambitions to make it to Lannacombe Cove or even Start Point! Again walking in regular downpours the teams crossed the estuary in Salcombe by ferry and continued along their routes, some hugging the coast others going inland. When we spoke to the teams at the expedition’s end, all of them commented on how much they loved the views and thought the coastline was stunning – although they did back that up with how they wished there were fewer steep climbs! Having met Dr Davies at the checkpoint at Gara Rock, and being reassured they were on track, they continued further up the coast and took their various routes inland to head towards East Prawle. They encountered their Assessors () at various points who were impressed with their navigation and map reading skills.
Eventually, looking tired and weary, the teams walked into East Prawle. Each team had been on expedition for 6 hours or more so Mr Brett called time on the day. The students were really relieved to see the TA minibus and after a short chat with their Assessors about the highlights, lowlights and experiences of their expedition they loaded their rucksacks on the buses and headed back home, with some catching forty winks on the bus.
Many thanks to all the staff (Mr Beswetherick, Mrs Schwarz, Dr Davies, Mr Butler, Mr Brett and Mr Adams) that helped out over the weekend and helped make it such a good experience for the students. And finally, huge congratulations to the following for a successful expedition and they are all one step closer to achieving their DofE Bronze Awards:
Team 1 – Dylan White, Robin Pightling, Zachary Jones, Ed Fogarty, Will Harrison
Team 2 – Robyn Mitchell, Elsie Taylor, Ava Sams, Jasmine Huxtable
Team 3 – Phoebe Lown, Oriana McCaul, Hannah Carr, Penny Richards
Team 4 – Kole Gjikolaj, Joel Copping, William Reed, Ollie Hill, Tyler Bayliss, Oakley Hayes, Ben Gosnell
Over the weekend I received two separate emails from members of the public who had bumped in our students who wanted to let me know how wonderful and polite they were. I couldn’t have felt more proud.
5 years of Mindfulness
Established by teachers from amongst the country’s most successful schools, Mindfulness in Schools Project (MiSP) aims to improve the lives of children by making a genuine, positive difference to their mental health and wellbeing. With a decade’s worth of experience, the charity is the most established provider of mindfulness training and curricula for schools. Torquay Academy was so fortunate to have been chosen to be one of those schools 5 years ago and has been fortunate to offer this 10 week programme to the Yr 7 students on arrival to our school. This week we have received the certificate to congratulate and thank us for this.
Their email to us is as follows:
Dear Mrs Tanner,
On behalf of the MYRIAD team here in Oxford, may I thank you sincerely for completing your final set of measures and for your participation in this important and worthwhile research project. By taking part you have enabled future school teachers, pupils and schools to have the best and most robust information on wellbeing and resilience. Supporting schools in this fundamental area of wellbeing has been at the heart of our project and it would not have been possible without your time and commitment.
Featured House of the Week
In the fourth instalment of our weekly series, the featured house is Harrison.
The colour for Harrison is orange and the hue is clearly identifiable due to its vibrancy. I have today been involved in making a promotional video for Harrison House -with some Year 7 students, who are all incredibly proud to represent their house and what it stands for. Harrison’s house leader is Mr Penrice who chose to lead Harrison above all the other houses. Mr Penrice loves the values promoted by Harrison and the idea of ‘showing up for one’s team.’
Harrison takes its name from Arthur Leyland Harrison (1886-1918) Harrison was a Royal Naval officer and a recipient of the Victoria Cross-the most prestigious British award for gallantry. During the First World war, Harrison was charged with a raid on the Belgian port of Zebrugge which was being utilised as a naval base for the German army. In the course of the action, he was knocked unconscious by a fragment of shell -but continued with the fight as soon as he regained his senses. Tragically Harrison was killed in action and his body was never recovered. The Victoria Cross was awarded posthumously to recognise Harrison’s incredible valour.
There is a memorial to Arthur Leyland Harrison on Roundham head at Paignton. Every year, on Armistice Day, a wreath of poppies is left there -in recognition of a man who paid the ultimate price for his country. The motto for Harrison house is -unsurprisingly- Be Courageous. At Torquay Academy, we recognise just how much courage it takes to come into school every day, making the right choices-particularly after the pandemic which has been so difficult for everyone. In addition, a courageous student may well choose to perform in assembly or a concert, participate in a sports’ team or represent the school in Student Voice.
Our featured students of the week are Sammy Lock from 7H, Woody Ronson from 8H and Isabel Blamey from 9H. All three students are this week’s Harrison house stars. Mrs. Nash, Sammy’s tutor. describe how Sammy displayed daily courage by showing up and doing as requested without complaint. Woody has been recognised for his courageous behaviour in a Maths’ lesson where he made the right choices and took risks to solve difficult problems. Finally, Isabel was recognised for adopting a positive attitude and always completing her homework-a task which some of us find challenging in the current climate.
Mr Penrice as Harrison lead says; ‘It takes real courage to show up for one’s team. As well as being a war hero, Arthur Harrison was also a successful rugby player who was capped twice for England. He is the only English rugby player to have been awarded the Victoria Cross.’
Harrison was a courageous team player both on the Sports’ Field and the battlefield. We encourage our Harrison students to emulate these values.
Miss Risk – Head of Houses.
After 2 weeks of trials we have finalised our boys’ football squads for next year. The turnout was excellent and the standard again was very high, making Mr Hogg’s job very difficult to choose who goes through. The names below now form the squad for that year group who will train together and be eligible to be picked for fixtures. Mr Hogg was proud to continue training throughout this difficult year, whether that was on the turf or virtually into their homes, but as we all know it’s about the games and the competition against other schools that we thrive on.
The players and the staff cannot wait for the fixtures to start again next year and I’m sure we will do ourselves proud in all competitions. Let’s go, Team TA!!
Adam, in Year 10, has worked incredibly hard at home designing virtual spacecraft to undertake a variety of missions. It has taken great care and a lot of expertise to tweak his designs.
End of Season Awards
This week we presented our awards to our individual winners from the football education programme. After a difficult year, it was fantastic to celebrate the achievements of our players, both the boys and girls team voted for their winners and Mr Hogg added his nominations for manager’s player.
This year has been like no other but we have still managed to have an amazing time as a team and the players have been outstanding in their work ethic and commitment to the programme. For those who are moving on into university, work or travelling we want to wish you well and we’re sure they will be successful in the next chapter of their lives. We are now looking forward to next year with excitement and keep our fingers crossed it will be back to normal.
Below are all our award winners from this year, congratulations on your awards, they are well deserved.
With football about to come home, what could be better than a keepie up challenge for Fun Friday!
Students of the Week
Year 7 –
Year 8 – Alex McDowall
Year 9 – Jack Sullivan
Year 10 – Bethany Coker
Prestigious Diamond Award
This week we presented a new level of award, the Prestigious Diamond Award. Many congratulations to Jemimah Jones and Mille Sneap on achieving 825 House Points this year!
Year 7 – Jemimah Jones and Mille Sneap
Governor’s Gold Award
Year 7 – Olivia Wilson, Olivia Hosking and Lyra Bowstead
Year 8 – Joe Hosking
Governor’s Silver Award
Year 7 – Amara Phillips, Daytona Vickers, Joe Taylor, Charlie Grimley, Emma Matthews and Madison Findlay-Peers
Year 8 – Megan Sellick
Governor’s Bronze Award
Year 7 – Alfie Mahoney-Billis, Charlie Knight, Callum Jackson, Chloe Hollis, Toby Clarke and Jayden Trevelyan
Year 8 – Lauren Catt, Daisy Gibbings and Aleah Coombes
Year 9 – Grave Povey
Principal’s Gold Award
Year 7 – Ruby Donaldson, Erin Bond, Leon Bell, Charlie Hope, Jaden Morris, Jessica Nicholson, Jack Woolley, Bella Kirby, Alfie Eccles, Lily Corderoy and Simon Drost
Year 8 – Isabella Aguado-Georgian, Alfie Harnett, Emily Graham, Thomas Harrison and Harvey Thomas
Year 9 – Kole Gjikolaj, Gabriel Prior, Harrison Clarke and Jamie Nunn
Principal’s Silver Award
Year 7 – Isla Aldworth, Noah Tyson, Poppy Hedworth, Molly Stacey, Marley Drew, Theo Hardman and Lucian Churchward
Year 8 – Jajyjay Henderson, Leah Scott and Sean Crawford
Year 9 – Charlie Fox, Craig Mintern, Joshua Robinson, Ethan Sanders, Ben German, Gabrielle Jenenway, Emily Tucker and Callum Oldham
Principal’s Bronze Award
Year 7 – Sammy Lock and Lucas Spriggs
Year 9 – Isabelle Clarke, Toby Morris, Matilda Bindon, Benjamin Gosnell, Oliver Phillips, Chayden Talbot, Zak Berryman, Matt Budavolgyi, Rachel Breach and Oriana McCaul
House Stars of the week
Christie – Poppii Marshall
Darwin – Katie Rowe
Fawcett – Cody Dougherty
Harrison – David Wanstall
Kitson – Lottie Davis
Nearne – Amelie McCaul
Pengelly – Sonny Paton
Brunel – Jasmine Evans
Christie – Oliver Huxtable
Darwin – Megan Sellick
Fawcett – Mya Sharpe
Harrison – Enrika Vasiliauskaite
Kitson – Harvey Thomas
Nearne – Maddy Fairhurst
Pengelly – Alex McDowall
Christie – Chayden Talbot
Fawcett – Kian Chadwick
Kitson – Tommy Aldous
Nearne – Evie Sutton
Homework Stars of the week
Christie – Dean Conway
Darwin – Zack Shaw
Fawcett – Daniel Eales
Harrison – Owen Waller
Kitson – Ben Watts
Nearne – Callum Cliff
Pengelly – Charlie Pettit
Brunel – Taylor Holton
Christie – Milo Marshall
Darwin – Jayden Langhorn
Fawcett – Daisy Gibbings
Harrison – Michalina Jarosz
Kitson – James Lovell
Nearne – James Ferris
Christie – James Scrimgeour
Fawcett – Rachel Breach
Kitson – Charlie Stevens
Nearne – Nikita Howells