We are now really pleased to see the Covid infection rate significantly decreasing. As a result we are now looking forward to giving students the option of wearing masks and then, all being well, re-introducing assemblies and morning welcome after half-term.
Some of you will be aware that last year we introduced Astronomy as an option at GCSE. For some reason it seems to be mainly private schools that offer this subject, so it is a real thrill to see our students thriving in the subject. This week we were loaned some moon rock and other materials from comets and asteroids. This was fantastic for the students to see, particularly as some rocks were worth over half a million pounds!
Please remember we have a four-day week next week. Our last day of term is Thursday 17th February.
Research shows that work experience gives young people a competitive advantage - about 80% of employers think work experience is essential and two-thirds of employers would be more likely to hire a young person with work experience over someone with none (Careers and Enterprise Company...
Parents/carers of students entitled to Free School Meals will receive a payment or voucher for half-term on Thursday 17 February.
Year 9 students will have an additional £6 included in their payment/voucher to cover the two days that they were not in school last week.
More Bronze Awards for Year 7
Year 7 students as a year group continue to collect several hundred reward points each week. We have another 19 students who have gained their Bronze certificate this term (listed below) and our top performing students are very close to reaching Silver.
We have been encouraging students to try out the extracurricular activities this term – another way to get reward points – but also a chance to meet like-minded students and develop a sense of community. All clubs are free so why not try out something new next week!
Keep up the good work everyone.
The Year 7 Team
Meteorites and Moon rock land at John of Gaunt
Students from John of Gaunt got their hands-on rare samples of moon rocks and meteorites during this week of science lessons which were truly out of this world.
Students and staff were encouraged to reach for the stars and learn more about the surrounding Universe during a week-long interactive experience of astronomy during Science, Astronomy and A-level lessons.
The samples ranged from a 1.2 billion-year-old piece of Mars rock reaching Earth via a meteorite striking Mars the broken chunks reaching Earth and passing through our atmosphere. A 4.3 billion-year-old nickel meteorite from a time near the creation of the Solar System that is nearly as old as Earth itself and will probably be the oldest substance they will ever hold.
Carbonaceous chondrite 4.3 billion years old - Martian Meteorite
Students were also given the opportunity to handle lunar samples that were collected in the late 1960s and early 1970s during some of NASA’s first manned Apollo space missions to the Moon. During these missions, material was brought back to Earth – mostly for use by scientists, but some small samples were made available for use in educational settings, in the UK these rare samples were provided by the UK’s Science and Technology Facilities Council (STFC).
The Lunar samples included Mare (sea) and Terrae (highlands) and a substance known as ‘orange soil’ that was found by accident in 1972 on the Moon by Geologist Harrison “Jack” Schmitt turned up the ruddy regolith when he scuffed the soil at Shorty Crater with his boot. It was later determined that the orange soil was formed from molten drops that sprayed from a lunar volcanic eruption some 3.64 billion years ago.
Note the disturbed orange soil centre
One of the more unusual samples that students handled were not even from space but formed by a meteorite striking the Earth throwing up a cloud of vaporised rock and sand that forms rock at low pressures with large amounts of air bubbles externally and internally known as Tektite. Another one was formed an airburst meteorite and melted the sand beneath it causing it to fuse known as Impactite.
The last 2 weeks have seen years 7 & 8 completing their food and nutrition courses with their own recipes based on previous practicals.
Although the food rooms have been manic at times the results have been excellent and delicious!
Please find below Diana Vela and Daisie-Mae Smith’s delicious cakes and Amelia Cross’ beautifully decorated sausage rolls.
Produce of the month: With the days getting lighter and longer more and more produce is ready in the UK. One of my favourites is butternut squash, try roasting in big chunks with a roast or making into a delicious Thai soup. Did you know there are over 100 varieties of squash!
Keep eating and being adventurous!
Food and Nutrition
Rehearsals for KS3 Production of ‘Much Ado About Nothing: Summer Camp’ are underway and going brilliantly.
Our Year 7, 8s and 9s have been working really hard to make this 70s Rock inspired version of Shakespeare a reality: choreographing, singing and acting their hearts out.
This performance will be taking place in the summer term so keep an eye out for dates! (Also keep your eyes peeled for cameos from some of our enthusiastic teachers!)
The Brilliant Club
This year we are really excited to be working with The Brilliant Club. The Brilliant Club runs a Scholars Programme which helps pupils develop the knowledge, skills and confidence to progress to the most competitive universities. PhD Tutors come into our school to deliver the programme, sharing their subject knowledge and passion for learning with small groups of students. Our students will also make visits to a university, and we will update you with more news as the programme evolves.
This year we are able to offer this opportunity to 24 students across Years 9 and 10.
The students are as follows:
Ellie- Bea Richardson
On Wednesday 9 February the Year 12 Sports Leaders helped lead a SEND New Age Curling Event to primary school aged children.
The schools that took part included Silverwood, Studley Green and The Mead School. The Sports Leaders took charge of each of the competitions and ensured that they were inclusive for all to take part.
They did a fantastic job and were a credit to the school. Well done to all that took part!
Wiltshire Youth Council
You will have read a couple of weeks ago that we had 5 candidates who stood for election to be the representatives from our school at the Wiltshire Youth Council.
Having had the whole school elections, our lead councillor is Lily H (Year 9) and our deputy Dennis S (Year 7). It was a very close election - Lily and Dennis were only 2 votes apart!
We hope they enjoy their new role and responsibilities. We're very proud of Lily and Dennis and all the candidates who stood for election.
In the photo below you can see Lily and Dennis with Mr Skipp and Laura Mayes the Deputy Leader and Cabinet Member for Children's Services, Education & Skills.
Year 10 Food Processing
Today we have been focusing upon secondary processing – turning milk into cheese.
This is also a good opportunity to link back to food science – protein denaturing and coagulation and synaeresis.
Once we made the curds (solids) and whey (liquid), the students were able to make links with food waste and its environmental impacts!
Well Done year 10!
Year 9 Netball
The Year 9 Netball Team played against Clarendon Away this week. It was a very close game! Unfortunately, Clarendon took the win in the last quarter winning 12-10. Players of the match went to Amelia K and Erin O.
Well done to all those that played, it was a great game to watch!
Supporting careers education, information, advice and guidance @ JoG
THIS WEEK IS NATIONAL APPRENTICESHIP WEEK
In 2020-2021 7% of our students from Year 13 progressed onto an apprenticeship and 3% of Year 11s moved into this option post-16.
Currently, there are 103 apprenticeship vacancies within a 10-mile radius of our school, ranging from hairdressing to business admin and mechanics and dental nursing. To view the vacancies, search on https://www.gov.uk/apply-apprenticeship
Wednesday 16th February Bath College are hosting an Apprenticeship open event led by their Apprenticeship team, to give more information about what an Apprenticeship entails, why you might want to do one, and what types of Apprenticeships are on offer at Bath College. 4-6pm is a drop-in slot for anyone.
Any help needed with applying or looking for an apprenticeship please contact our school Careers Adviser/Lead Ms Amy Lynch email@example.com