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.
Friday morning, year 7 students lined up outside for their coaches in preparation for an adventurous day at the Natural History Museum. Once on the coaches, safety information for the day was shared.
On arriving at the Natural History Museum, students were free to explore all the museum had to offer. Student enjoyed exploring the exhibit on human biology. Ella said her favourite part of the museum so far was “the earthquake experience with the floor shaking.”
Our students enjoyed visiting the gift shop to bring home a small souvenir of their visit to the Natural History Museum. The gift shop was a popular stop for students. Niamh showed us some of the cool items that could be found in the gift shop. Niamh’s favourite part of the trip was the Dinosaur exhibit because “they’re my bae”. (That’s the thing someone loves the most, in case you’re not up on pre-teen slang.)
Shonnabelle also really enjoyed seeing the Dinosaur exhibit while Sienna thought the Bird exhibit was the most interesting. We caught up with them while they were taking a quick break from all excitement to sit and have a snack.
We caught up with Daniel, Luca, Algis, Abbas, and Jayden by some of the amazing dinosaur fossils. The boys were really impressed by the amazing gems – what seemed like millions of them – in the upstairs galleries. They also thought the massive giant sequoia specimen was pretty impressive.
As our time at the museum drew to a close, the students headed down to the basement school lunch area to eat before heading back on the coaches. Josh enjoyed the visit to the museum, and his favourite part was “everything”. Archie enjoyed the earthquake simulator in the Volcanoes and Earthquakes gallery so much, he did it twice. The rocks and minerals exhibit was also popular with these young gentlemen.
Felicity especially liked the exhibit on human evolution. She found the information there to be very interesting. Sofia added another vote for the Volcanoes and Earthquakes exhibit, and Deanna echoed the love of the dinosaurs.
Sudiksha really enjoyed learning about the volcanoes, while Leyla Whyte repeated what many had said with the dinosaurs being her favourite.
Our time at the museum drew to a close, and it was time to head back to Milton Keynes. The students had an amazing time learning outside of the classroom at the Natural History Museum, and everyone had an incredible time. As you can see, the Dinosaurs and the Volcanoes and Earthquakes exhibits were particular favourites for many of our students, and of course, the gift shop was a not to be missed area. We are really proud of our students for representing The Hazeley Academy so well while we were in London, and we can’t thank Ms. Kennedy enough for arranging such an amazing trip for all of us.
Unfortunately, not everyone could join us on the trip, but no worries! They had a super fun day at Hazeley learning all about ecosystems. Students then had a chance to build their own ecosystem and populate it with animals. When they were done, we could have had our own museum exhibit right here at Hazeley! Thanks to Ms. Thistlewood for arranging such a fun day for our students who stayed behind.
On the 9th of June 2017, Year 10 spent their morning productively with Maths teachers learning about how to prepare effectively for their end of year exams. Having discussed several revision strategies and useful websites, each student had the chance to develop their ability to revise and learn much more productively. They compared different revision guides and discussed how they might best prepare for their PPEs using a combination of different resources.
In particular, students spent time preparing flashcards to help them memorise key formulae and shared their individual tips for being more successful during exams. The Year 10 group were keen and enthusiastic throughout the day and have hopefully taken away all positive feedback.
Students left the session with a clear idea of how to ensure that using different revision strategies will have an impact on their results in upcoming PPEs and eventually their GCSEs.
Today year 9 were lucky enough to have the Young Enterprise team come to The Hazeley Academy to help them understand the importance of budgeting, financial planning and looking to the future. Students engaged in ‘dream’ budgets, designed to get them thinking about what their ideal life would cost as well as comparing this with what their desired career with a real salary could achieve.
Through games and challenges our students considered the routes available to them and what pathways each route can open. Even as year 9 students, the importance of future planning is significant and today has given them a really good indication of what the future can hold.
In the afternoon students learned interview technique, the importance of questioning and how to present themselves. Students responded really positively saying that the budgeting task “opened my eyes to reality” and that the board game was “fun and a great lesson”.
Our visitors today were all volunteers who work with Young Enterprise and gave up their time to support our students! We at Hazeley are extremely grateful for all of their hard work and the challenges that they gave our students.
By Lewis B (Year 8)
Over the past couple of weeks, we’ve had a lot going on at our Unicef Club. Activities ranging from creative drawing tasks to research into charities and hospice care groups. You may have heard about Kev Sutherland who came in from Beano/Marvel to celebrate Milton Keynes’ 50th Birthday. Kev Sutherland is an artist that came into our school and taught us how to draw Comic Book drawings. We then created comic books based on the theme of “where our families came from before we lived in Milton Keynes”.
We have also had Keech Hospice care visit in May for one of our meetings. Keech Hospice Care is a charity which supports adults and children in this area, who have life-limiting and terminal illnesses. We have a student at our school who is supported by Keech Hospice Care. Not only did we hear about the great work Keech does but we also thought about how we could support her in her fundraising efforts. Keep your eyes open for a video later in the year!
We have also had a visit from Amnesty International, coming in to talk to us about what they do and why it is important. Amnesty International is a global movement of more than 7 million people who “take injustice personally”. They are campaigning for a world where human rights are enjoyed by all and they fight for human right abuses worldwide. Remember you could become an Ambassador and be involved in these kinds of activities. So speak up and have your say today.
Talk to Miss Griffiths about becoming an ambassador.
The debate club have had two recent contests and with a growing sense of a group identity the students are able to manage running their own debate sessions with real passion and excitement. There is a strong sense of unity amongst the group and the well-being of all is strong despite one side of the debate enjoying victory, the joy of the debate is shared by all. Last week Felicity Jackson, Sofia Elliott-Cirigottis, Carla Lozano-McInerney and Leyla Whyte debated whether or not schools should set homework with Thomas Briggs as the chairperson. After very detailed arguments from the Proposer and Opposer, the overall vote went against homework!
This week the debate was on the use of stress toys in the classroom, points were raised by Isabelle Moon and Sudishka Inguva about the distraction to other students but Felicity and Carla won the vote with their excellent arguments about relieving stress – particularly poignant in Mental Health Awareness Week this week. Leyla made an excellent chairperson to the meeting, keeping the teams in order!
What an exciting unit ‘My Britain’ is to help year 9 English students make sense of the country they live in and it’s similarities and differences to other parts of the world! While learning the essential GCSE skills required for non-fiction analysis language exam, students are enriched through meaningful discussion and debate around the key question: ‘What does it mean to be British?’ The diversity of the Hazeley family is celebrated within this unit serving as a microcosm of British society as a whole. Politics, culture, terrorism, religion, tradition, immigration – from fish and chips and a ‘cuppa’ to Britain’s presence in the world-wide arena, this unit has every aspect of SMSC covered!
Following the decision by Prime Minister Theresa May to hold an election on 8 June, students were given resources to share on politics, the purpose of an election and what is meant by a political constituency. Form groups had the opportunity to discuss the political changes that the country will face, which consistency Hazeley is in and who is our local MP – Iain Stewart. Students learnt that there are 650 constituencies in the country and a general election is really 650 individual elections which happen all on one day, across England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland. Students in Mrs Kearns form group were really interested in the news story and were curious to know more about the differences between different parties and their policies.
At Hazeley we know that staying safe online is an important life skill. We were delighted to welcome presenters from Intel Security to the Academy to recognise Internet Safety Day on 7th February. They talked to students in all year groups about Cyber Security (how do we know a website is secure?), Cyber Ethics (what sort of messages is it acceptable to send to people you know online?) and Cyber Safety (how can I keep myself safe online and what do I do if I don’t feel safe?).
We hope that students now feel better equipped to navigate social media now and in the future, in a way that keeps them safe. If they have any further questions about this, their first port of call should be their Computer Science or IT teachers or Mr Nott our ICT Network Manager.
At Hazeley we collected over 200 food items for the MK Foodbank and so the people at the food bank were very grateful. The man who runs the food bank said that they don’t have as many donations as you would think they would so our donation would make a real difference. On Friday 3rd February a group of us students loaded the food donations into the minibus to take to the food bank offices in Stacey Bushes. It took quite a few of us to carry and transport all the goods and we filled up four large shopping trolleys at the end to take in. We were also shown how everything was organised into pasta, beans, tinned meat, fish etc. They explained to us how the packages are made up with specific amounts and they also cater for homeless people with a kettle pack (everything in the pack can be made with a kettle). With many thanks to everyone who made the donations!
– Written by Antony V, Year 8
KS3 Product Design
Year 7 and 8 were set a project to research recycling and sustainability. They were asked to find out what the 6 R’s are and also to create a poster to promote the need for recycling. This task encouraged students to think about their morals on waste and to understand our role in protecting our planet. These are some of the examples of the creative and possessive posters that have been produced. They will be going on display soon so we continue to promote recycling throughout Hazeley.
Students in year 11 GCSE catering lessons have just completed their major practical exam. We saw range of dishes from various countries, which was a real opportunity for students to study and embrace and celebrate other cultures. Staff also really enjoyed going along at lunchtime to taste and evaluate the food!
In Drama, we have lots of trips booked this term. These trips allow students to have some time out of the classroom and see how what they are learning in the classroom is used in theatre. Students love these trips and it gives them a chance to engage with each other outside of school which is fundamental for building positive relationships with their peers.
Drama Trips This Term:
KS3: ‘Dick Whittington’
On 13th January, the Drama Department took a group of 50 students to see the pantomime ‘Dick Whittington’.
The staff and the students had a fantastic time, with many of our students asking to go again next year.
KS5: ‘Twelfth Night’
On Friday 3rd March, the Drama Department will be taking our Year 13 students to see the National Theatre’s adaptation of ‘Twelfth Night’ in London.
We are really excited to see how the play has been adapted for a contemporary audience. Students will be encouraged to consider how the performance contrasts to the original performance conditions in preparation for their written exam.
KS5: ‘The Play That Goes Wrong’
On Monday 13th March, the Drama Department will have the pleasure of taking our Year 12 students to see ‘The Play That Goes Wrong’ at the Milton Keynes Theatre.
It will not only be a fantastic opportunity to see a live theatre performance, but will provide students will some of the crucial information they need to complete their written exam.
Yr 7 Galaxy scenes
Our year 7’s dived right into creativity and imagination to make their very own galaxy scenes. After researching and studying different ways to create depth and space in 2D artworks, students set about creating their own interpretation of a galaxy scape. Onto black paper they flicked watercolour paint to create a star-encrusted sky over which they swirled brightly coloured galaxies with paint, added cut out stuck shapes of nebulas and far away planets and embellished with metallic paints. The results were fantastic, and we are so impressed with the imagination and skill that the years 7’s have demonstrated.
Yr 8 Japanese Fish Kites
Year 8’s tackled the prospect of a 3D project with great enthusiasm. This topic was based around Japanese art, with the emphasis on traditional Japanese Kites. Inspired by the art, we set about making traditional Japanese Koi carp themed kites. We investigated the symbolism of the fish and also of kites in Japanese culture. The tubular kites were made with wax crayon and watercolour textured scales and details such as eyes and tails were added with coloured sugar paper. The results are fantastic! I’m really happy with how well the year 8’s interpreted the design brief and how they completed the task of the kite making with consideration and imagination.
Yr 9 Gustav Klimt
Many people recognise the famous artist name Gustav Klimt for his elaborate paintings with bright and metallic qualities. The brilliant year 9’s were tasked with interpreting several of his more well-known pieces, in order for them to create a visual homage to Klimt. This was a particularly difficult task, because it required students to take creative risks – but the year 9’s did a fantastic job. You can clearly see the correlation in their paintings to Klimt’s’ original works, through the use of different shades of yellow, the swirling branches of the tree, and the abstract fictional shapes in the trunk which are a trademark of Klimt. We are extremely impressed with the maturity with which Year 9 students approached and completed their work. The results are wonderful.
By Mrs Lloyd-Jones
On Wednesday 11 January we held our second Drop Down Day of the academic year. The Confidence Faculty organised a ‘healthy body health minds’ event with outside speakers and a range of different activities for our students to try. We had Aikido a martial art demonstrated by a group who run sessions at the academy on Wednesday evenings. An indoor golf taster with various obstacles and targets to help work on precision and accuracy. Students learned the importance of knowing the recovery position in saving lives. There were sessions focused on mindfulness – living in the here and now and considering the past which we cannot change and the future which we cannot predict. Students completed tasks relating to the development of a growth mindset and worked to understand the importance of nutrition and diet to being both physically and mentally healthy. Overall the Y9 students’ had a fantastic day engaging in activities not always available on the curriculum.
The 6th form A-level scientists played an active role in helping year 8 with their options subject choices on the Drop Down Day on the 11th January. Year 8 students had the opportunity to carry out taster sessions to see whether they would like to do triple science next year. They had to work as a group to develop a hypothesis and then spent time trying to see if they could gather enough evidence to support their hypothesis. Sixth form students inspired the year 8’s to come up with really good ideas. They also showed students what possible subject pathways could be taken in the future using the triple science qualification. This was an excellent day for developing skills with our key stage 3 learners as well as exploring the benefits of science in the wider community.
By Antony and Beth (Year 8)
When the Mannequin Challenge first became popular in October 2016, which is when Miss Griffiths had the amazing idea that perhaps, the Hazeley could produce their own versi on of the popular challenge. And, so we did – over the course of a fortnight, in various rooms; with various teachers and different themes on each filming occasion, we spent a total of over six hours.
What made our Mannequin Challenge different and special, is that we related it to the UN Rights of the Child – and celebrated education, culture and the right to share and obtain information. We decided to include this as these rights are important to us as an academy and we intend to spread further awareness on them so we are all aware of what privileges we have.
Overall, the video was uploaded on December, 14th 2016 and has so far garnered over 1,800 views, as well as becoming a featured article in the MK Citizen and appearing on the UNICEF website – a long term goal of the Academy. And, while editing took twelve hours, the video lasts just shy of seven minutes, and features guests such as Mrs Sear, Mr Laurie, Miss Bevilacqua and even Mr Nelson.