Today, the Debate Club was visited by Councillor Sam Crooks to talk through the importance of democracy and having the vote. A key question is the role of young people who have a stake in society e.g. they can be taxed so should young people at age 16 years have the vote? Another reason is the huge changes that will be taking place in Milton Keynes over the next few years. In 2050 MK will have doubled in size from the quarter of a million people we have now. MK will spread to Bedford, Aylesbury and Buckingham and so young people will be the next generation who must have a say now about how the city should look in the decades to come.
Students discussed the areas that need to be improved in MK but also what is going well. Rosie felt that MK doesn’t have enough leisure locations with not enough to do at the weekends. Sam suggested that this could be linked to health e.g. exercise, cycling etc. Leyla explained the problem was the number of homeless people we see at the centre with people in the underpasses and in tents, how it is scary when walking in the underpass. Carla made the point about road crossings are not safe enough and wants to see more road safety solutions. Isobel agreed with Leyla about the issue of homelessness which seems to be increasing and can be intimidating even though we know they are not all bad people. Emily discussed the shops in the city centre and how they are all chains instead of independents and would like to see more individuality and choice. Maisie raised the point about homelessness and was wondering if there is a place homeless people could go to get help instead of being on the streets. Sam explained that as MK grows there needs to be houses that are affordable and everyone can access a home whether renting or buying.
Carla really liked the fact MK is not like a normal city which is quite unsafe but in MK there are lots of parks and it is safe to walk down the road. Kenzie liked the fact that in MK there is always something for everyone and a choice of different activities to join in. Annabelle likes MK for all the social spaces. Rosie explained the value of the cycle paths which enables safety for cyclists and that there is a path they know where they can go. Isabelle said that everything is here in MK with lots of shops and activities to do, more so than in other towns and cities. Leyla explained how she likes the people in MK as her Dad lost her car keys and someone took them straight into the police station where they were able to get them back. Sudiksha likes the educational facilities but would like more space e.g. fields open for people to have freedom to roam. Maisie likes the fact that MK has fewer factories so this is a better city for reducing global warming, Sam explained all schools were built to reduce pollution and also MK now has 17 electric driverless cars. Felicity really likes the woods and green spaces around MK for dog walking. Isobel liked that even though we have shopping and factories there are lots of open spaces. Leyla pointed out how clean and rubbish free MK is.
Sam explained that the council are looking at in the future having a University as MK will be part of the Oxford-Cambridge corridor and as a nation we are looking to focus on science and engineering like silicon valley in California. Sam was pleased to hear comments about the green infrastructure and low carbon agenda with recycling and electric buses. Sam’s final point was that young people have views which are as important as the older generation.
By M Sheppee
A level mathematicians took part in the Senior Team Maths Challenge at John Colet school in Aylesbury this week. The event was hosted by the Further Maths Support Programme, which aims to inspire and encourage students’ enjoyment of maths through teamwork and competition. The challenge was very difficult but the Hazeley team which was made up of Hatim Sachak, Alex Garrett, Ramita Dhanda, and Hugh Slaney showed great determination and finished a well-deserved ninth place in the competition. We look forward to taking part in the competition again next year and encourage students to take part in the other maths challenges which run throughout the year.
by Mrs McCleery + Mr Swales
On Friday 10th November, year 7 students played the Last Post at 11.01 am after a one minute silence on the keyboards in all different locations around the school so that everyone could hear in every classroom.
“For Remembrance Day we played the fanfare to remember all the soldiers who fought in the wars. This was to show our respect to the armed forces.”
“It’s important to remember because it shows Hazeley shows respect to the soldiers around the world.”
“Today we were doing a fanfare for Remembrance Day and it felt like quite a privilege to do this because our group was the one being asked.”
“I think it was really exciting because we were trying to keep quiet for one minute but then knowing we would have to play. We were really lucky to be chosen to do this as no one has done this before.”
by Miss Mckenzie
The Debate Club joined other schools in Milton Keynes for the MK Youth Cabinet Big Debate at MK Dons Stadium for a day of developing public speaking skills and delivering a presentation on life skills to a panel of judges.
There were a number of different groups with a mix from each school that looked at how a range of life skills topics should be taught in school including sustainability, home economics, cultural and community awareness, First Aid and healthy food.
Hazeley Student Council
Students learnt that Children in Need is the BBC’s charity which relies on the support of public for fundraising with an event each year. The vision of Children in Need is that every child in the UK has a childhood which is safe, happy, secure and allows all children to reach their potential. The charity provides grants to projects in the UK which focus on disadvantaged youngsters and to organisations which empower children to extend their life choices. Currently, Children in Need are supporting 2.400 projects including Haven House a children’s hospice that supports children with illnesses and who need bereavement support. See Molly’s story here: http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p01m1gj6
The Student Council prepared a presentation for form time to explain the aims of Children and Need and they drew on their creative spark and also designed and made bookmarks to fundraise.
In today’s Debate Club, the students decided that the motion was going to be ‘This House believes that young people should get the vote at the age of 16.’
The debate was chaired expertly by Maisie Hughes in year 8 and the results were a draw.
The two sides argued with passion with the key elements of each side of the debate being:
I think they should be allowed to vote because you are allowed to do other things at the age of sixteen so why can’t you vote?
Under 16s should be allowed to vote because even though they are developing ideas, in schools we could be taught more information about politics e.g. at form time then young people would know what to vote for. With greater awareness of political issues young people could make a good judgement.
Young people are the next generation who should have a say on how the country is run and who the next Prime Minister should be.
Under 16s should vote because at 18 years you leave school and are moving on to adulthood, young people watch the news and we have a news quiz in school so they are learning about political parties and what they want to achieve.
If you get married, go to work and you can learn how to drive then young people are considered responsible enough to do these things then why not extend this to voting.
Young people should not vote at 16 years old as they have no background knowledge about political parties.
At the age of 16 you are under 18 years old and unaware of the key issues in politics so are unable to make a clear decision.
One issue is that under 16s could be influenced by their parents and voting should be about what you think and not your parents who have much more control over 16 year olds.
Under 16s should vote because at 18 years you leave school and are moving on to adulthood, young people watch the news and we have a news quiz in school but young people need that knowledge first.
It is already a young age to have the vote at 18 years so why reduce the age even younger.
By Lesley McKenzie
Students from Shenley and Hazeley Student Councils met this week for a business breakfast to discuss upcoming events over the following year and how they can work collaboratively on events such as charity weeks, Sports Relief and Children in Need.
A number of different ideas were shared and discussed between both Student Councils including designing a shared logo for Sports Relief to raise the profile of the event, having a summer fair with a range of different activities and stalls and how a varsity Sports Day could be arranged with points and trophies.
Students were interested to see the similarities and differences between each school such as how Sports Day is run but also to consider how they can work to collaborate on events such as Uniformity – the Sixth Form version of University Challenge. Both schools are currently completing their shoebox appeal this year to support Link to Hope and students thought about ways in which to do a shared charity week next June with a range of different fundraising ideas.
There were some really creative ideas such as a day of using no electricity to make comparisons on how much electricity each school uses and the money saved to go to charity. Students thought about the logistics and what electrical items were essential and what substitutes could be made e.g. not using computers but a pencil and paper.
One of the most popular ideas was a shared talent show with the semi-finals and finals being held alternately in each school and the final held after school so parents could also attend the event.
Having talked through all their initial ideas, the respective Student Councils will now begin the planning, putting in the detail and preparing proposals to take us forward into 2018!
By Amy Mcinerney
The year 9 drop down day on the 18th of October was bursting with creativity and enthusiasm.
The day was complemented by a plethora of fascinating visitors from a variety of industries. These included a professional magician and an actor with Broadway and Emmerdale credentials! We had an architect who explained the process of building design and a product developer designing multi -function mobile phone cases. An engineer explained the physics behind lift design and a dance group, a drama specialist and mural workshop completed the whole creative experience! Students were engaged throughout the day and thoroughly enjoyed themselves…here are a few of their comments.
“It was an amazing day”
“I wish we could have another session with the architect, he was amazing”
“The magician was my favourite, he was SO cool!”
By Kirsty Bowers
This month sees the second in our new Wellbeing drop down lesson programme. Eight times a year the school timetable is collapsed for one lesson and students remain in tutor time to study various topics including Sex and Relationship Education, finance, addiction, and mental health issues. This is in addition to tutor time activities across the year which focus on “Healthy body, Healthy mind and Healthy Life”.
Through a variety of activities students have been encouraged to discuss issues which many may not have discussed before and enable students to leave the sessions having reflected and feeling more enlighted and confident on issues which affect their spiritual, moral, social and cultural development. Wellbeing is all about helping students, staff and parents be part of a positive Hazeley community.
During the last drop down lesson some brilliant posters on the topic of Sexting were produced by year 8 and the session this week will include topics such as online grooming, issues surrounding pornography and body image.
On the whole there has been a great improvement in engagement of students feeling that Wellbeing is now “something that is actually useful to us” and staff have enjoyed having the opportunity to get to know their tutees better whilst developing students wider education of the world.
We will be continuously reviewing and developing the Wellbeing programme to engage students, staff and parents with a view to future Wellbeing sessions to help support our parents too.
We also have exciting collaborative projects with our partner school at Shenley Brook End dealing with sexual exploitation and several Drop Down Days across the year directly linking in with our bid to become a UNICEF School and highlight mental health issues amongst our young people.
You can stay up to date with what students are studying in Wellbeing via the school website and clicking on the Wellbeing widget.
By Janelle Harrier Wilson
STEM is a buzz word you have probably heard recently throughout the news and education arenas. Have you wondered what all of the fuss is about? STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Maths) education is a push to show the importance of these overlapping subjects in an increasingly more technologically advanced society. STEM fields are some of the best areas for future study and careers for our students as there will be huge vacancies for highly qualified individuals to develop technologies in the next few years that we may only be dreaming about now.
Since STEM is such an integral part of the future for many of our students, The Hazeley Academy is working hard to support STEM initiatives and to provide opportunities to experience STEM to our students. So far this year, we have planned Crest Awards for our Key Stage 3 students. This opportunity will allow our students to work together on projects resulting in a nationally recognised award. Next month, we have a STEM visit planned for some of our Year 9 young ladies to experience a day of engineering at Nifty Lift. Soon after that, selected students in Years 8 and 9 will have the opportunity to experience a day of STEM centred on how it is used by Network Rail. In January, we have our Drop Down Day planned around an exciting STEM Day for our Year 9 students. We are also working on engaging our Sixth Form students through a high altitude balloon launch to plan and launch a payload to the stratosphere and return it safely to the Earth. If that’s not enough, we will be running a competition for students to send a sugar cubed sized sculpture on a sounding rocket (suborbital flight to space and back) to represent the Hazeley Academy!
As pioneer rocket engineer Robert H. Goddard shared, “It is difficult to say what is impossible, for the dream of yesterday is the hope of today and the reality of tomorrow.” It is our goal through our STEM program at Hazeley to inspire our students to stop just dreaming and to start working together thus creating that amazing reality of tomorrow.
The Student Council were visited this week by Paul Griffiths from YMCA Central Milton Keynes who talked about the issue of homelessness nationally and in Milton Keynes. Paul explained to students how MK Council has no statutory duty to house single people and so the YMCA supports those that are finding difficulties with housing. Paul explained how the YMCA was set up in 1848 and supports all faiths and none and they have 133 flats in MK city centre and a hostel with 23 beds. Last year the YMCA had facilities for 350 people but 1000 people asked for help so there is a shortfall in accommodation available. In addition, the YMCA building in Milton Keynes was built in the 1980s and so needs updating so a new work programme is underway at the same time that finances are being cut.
For many young and homeless people life gets off to a very difficult start with a lack of family guidance and structure in their lives. The Student Council asked questions about how the YMCA supports health, mental health and wellbeing as 1 in 5 homeless people have a mental health condition. One way in which the YMCA helps is by supporting people getting back into employment.
The YMCA have several campaigns running, one of them is #IAMWHOLE which is a campaign to tackle the stigma associated with mental health. This was launched last year, in conjunction with the NHS, and is being re-launched again this year on Tuesday 10th October, World Mental Health Day. One of the ‘activities’ that people are being asked to do, to show their support for the campaign is to take pictures of themselves with the #IAMWHOLE symbol drawn onto their left palm and post it on websites and social media sites.
by Mr Sheppee
On Thursday 14th September Mr Mensah and Mrs Hearty took a group of 36 Year 10 students to see a lecture show of The Curious Coincidence of Maths in the Daytime. This performance explained the maths behind the best-selling novel The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night Time and the application of maths to the theatre production that accompanied it. The lecture fully explained the many cultural references that were hidden in the book and the application of maths in music and architectural design. As part of this performance Daudi Wampamba got up on stage and sang alongside Rob Eastaway and had the sound signal analysed using the trigonometry that they have learned.
Ruth McGarry- September 2017
The English Department were very excited last academic year when it was announced the Academy intended to work towards the UNICEF Award for Schools and immediately began planning lessons for Drop Down days and other directed whole school ventures. This year, we’re going a step further and making the award an integral part of our teaching. SMSC (Social, Moral, Spiritual and Cultural) teaching is compulsory in all schools and the UNICEF Award, focusing on the UN Convention of the Rights of the Child, ties in perfectly!
This year the focus will be on Year 7 and we’re starting off this term with a series of lessons relating to Article 2 of the UN Convention which addresses prejudice and discrimination against children due to colour, race, family background or disability. As the year 7s are studying a wide range of poetry up until October half term, the poem ‘Half Caste’ by John Agard is the poem used to base the SMSC teaching around. Students will have the opportunity to explore issues of prejudice both in the UK and worldwide. In addition to reflective discussion, the lessons are also designed to develop the skills required for the GCSE exam in year 11.
This is a really exciting move going forward and will undoubtedly enrich the curriculum by generating thought-provoking debates and the sharing of views and experiences.
standing on one leg
wha yu mean
when yu say half-caste
yu mean when Picasso
mix red an green
is a half-caste canvas?
wha yu mean
when yu say half-caste
yu mean when light an shadow
mix in de sky
is a half-caste weather?
well in dat case
nearly always half-caste
in fact some o dem cloud
half-caste till dem overcast
so spiteful dem don’t want de sun pass
wha yu mean
when yu say half-caste
yu mean tchaikovsky
sit down at dah piano
an mix a black key
wid a white key
is a half-caste symphony?
wha yu mean
Ah listening to yu wid de keen
half of mih ear
Ah looking at yu wid de keen
half of mih eye
an when I’m introduced to yu
I’m sure you’ll understand
why I offer yu half-a-hand
an when I sleep at night
I close half-a-eye
consequently when I dream
I dream half-a-dream
an when moon begin to glow
I half-caste human being
but yu must come back tomorrow
wid de whole of yu eye
an de whole of yu ear
an de whole of yu mind.
an I will tell yu
de other half
of my story.
7C1’s classroom was this week transformed into a Maths Café, to host a session considering maths tasks pupils could do at home. There were four ‘stations’ in different areas of the room through which pupils rotated, each containing activities which I hoped would emphasise ‘real world’ applications of mathematics which were enjoyable and accessible to anyone, at any time.
For this station pupils looked at Chapter 1 from last year’s Alan Turing competition. There are six chapters currently available to look at online. These can be found here: http://www.maths.manchester.ac.uk/cryptography_competition/
This encourages collaborative thinking and can be enjoyed by a small group of peers together – and would be great accompaniment to a visit to Bletchley Park!
Pupils were provided with the rules to three different dice games. There are so many variations and games involving maths, but one of my favourites is ‘Shut the Box’ (we played with just a couple of dice and a piece of paper, writing the numbers on the paper and just crossing them out). The rules we used can be found here: https://thepoolshoppe.ca/wp-content/uploads/2014/12/Shut-the-Box-Game-Rules.pdf
Dice games are a great way of including the whole family and enjoying maths together. There is something to suit every taste.
Here the students were given simple two-player logic games, requiring just the printed board, rules and a few counters. Through playing, children develop logical thinking and exposure to mathematical processes.
As well as these printable two player games, there are many more substantial games which include significant (yet often hidden) mathematical elements, from Dungeons and Dragons to Qwirkle to Ticket to Ride to Rummikub. This is a wonderful way to encourage continuous mathematical thinking into the weekends, while spending quality time together with friends and family.
Logic puzzles are available abundantly, and many are popular with adults too (think Sudoku), and with good reason – the mental exercise has proven benefits towards a healthy brain. Even if it’s just, the more that children are encourage to think laterally the better!
There are plenty of ways to make these types of puzzles a way to spend a spare five minutes, whether by downloading an app, printing some out to have around the house, buying a puzzle book to keep your bag or in the loo!
There are plenty more mathematical hobbies we weren’t able to include at school but be rewarding and enjoyable extensions for anyone whose interest has been sparked. For a start, I would recommend Software Development for Kids, model building, or competitive games such as snooker.
In today’s debate club, Leyla, Sofia, Sudiksha, Emily, Lydia, Isabelle, Fern, Derusa, Carla, Deanna, Sienna, Shonabelle and Maisie debated the motion: ‘This House believes that animals should have scientific experiments done on them.’
The ‘yes’ arguments included that it is better to test on animals rather than humans so humans don’t feel pain and because new medicines could be dangerous to humans. Students felt this sounded wrong but thought that animals lived shorter lives than humans so it is justified, older animals could be used. The ‘no’ arguments included that it is bad to test on animals, they deserve to live and we should help preserve some animals that are becoming extinct such as the rhino.
This was a challenging debate for the students because some had to put together an argument they did not agree with. With 4 million animals being used in the UK for animal experiments each year, students felt animal experiments are an important issue to discuss.
The vote was 1 for yes, 1 for not sure and 11 were against animal testing.