1 – English Department are fanatical about reading
As part of the whole school drive and focus on the importance of reading for both pleasure and for educational purposes, the English department have undergone a face lift and promoted their love of reading.
English teacher, Mrs Ryder, who championed the idea, spent hours of her free time during the Christmas holidays creating a giant, open paged book with quotes from some of our pupils’ favourite books, all against a backdrop of two hundred infamous book covers.
Mrs Ryder said: “Reading is such a fundamental skill that we embrace within the department. We want to encourage all of our pupils to read for pleasure as well as in lessons.”
We are certain that pupils will be both engaged and enthused by this creative display which welcomes them on their arrival in the English Department and will continue to read for pleasure at home and school.
2 – Read-a-thon a huge success
25 pupils from across all year groups took part in a Read-a-thon during the month of November, as part of an English Department / Inter-House competition. The competition saw members of Auckland, Barnard, Witton and Raby houses reading some of their favourite books during lunch time sessions for four weeks.
English teacher, Mrs Broom, said: “It was the perfect chance for students to not only earn points for their houses as part of an on-going heated competition, but also gave pupils the opportunity to enjoy reading, which is at the heart of our school’s ethos.”
Pupils were awarded house points and Vivo miles for their commitment to the competition. First, second and third places were awarded to pupils who read the most words during the weekly sessions.
Congratulations to our winners:
1st - Holly Urquhart - Raby House (1000 vivos)
2nd - Matthew Foster - Auckland House(750 vivos)
3rd - Katie Hodgson - Barnard House (500 vivos)
3 – Bishop Barrington pupils become published writers
Over 50 of our pupils from years 7, 8 & 9 were chosen to become published writers after entering a poetry writing competition.
Pupils took part in a national writing competition hosted by The Young Writers’ company, entitled “Poetry Rivals.” Pupils were asked to create an original poem in a format of their choice, based on any topic they desired.
Pupils created an array of poems with topics ranging dramatically from their favourite sports, to people who inspired them, loved ones they’ve lost, War, political issues and even the life span of a human!
On reading the entries, Mrs Downes, second in the English Department said: “It was such a pleasure to witness the talent of our pupils when it came to writing something creative and memorable. The sheer number of pupils chosen for publication is outstanding; especially considering this was a national competition. We couldn’t be more proud of their achievements.”
The anthology of poetry will be published by the Young Writers’ company at the end of February 2017.
4 – Head teacher Challenge
December saw our Literacy Leaders, from Year 11, deliver a session to Key Stage 3 form classes on the importance of including ambitious vocabulary in our writing.
The lesson culminated in the setting of a Head teacher Challenge, set by Mrs Gent. Pupils were asked to creative a descriptive piece of writing entitled “My Secret Place,” with a word limit of no more than 500 words.
Literacy Leaders received a number of entries from Years 7, 8 & 9 and decided upon a winner alongside Mrs Gent.
The competition winner was by Charlotte Baldam from Year 7.
An extract from A Secret Place by Charlotte Baldam:
Strolling through the dark, windy paths of the woods, the ferocious jaguar approached a tree that was as bare as a skeleton. Rumour had it, that the woods were haunted by the ghost of the werewolves that were murdered there during Roman times. Apparently, howling could be heard if you were within a certain distance from the centre of the woods at midnight; Jaguars, even though extremely vicious, are terrified of ghosts!
Scattered over the abandoned area were dancing trees. Back and forth, back and forth, they would sway. The path was made of mud so if anyone or anything stepped across it, huge squelching noises could be heard throughout the woods. The grass, however, would be very pleasant if there was a decent amount of sunlight peering through the gaps in the taller trees. For now though, there is no sunlight, no grass and no pleasantries.