Category Archives: MAaT News

Future Chefs Cook Up a Storm!

Monday the 5th of October saw the School heats for the Springboard Future Chef Competition. Eight year 9 pupils took part including Lydia Morgan, Olivia King, Jack King, Courtney Jones, Catrin Grattidge, Ellie Hammacott, Natalie Johns and Ellie Jenkins.

Their brief was to cook a main meal with a budget of £5. They were judged on the balance of the meal including flavours, textures and appearance by Mr Powell, Mrs Lloyd and Miss Knight.

An amazing range of meals was produced and the staff thoroughly enjoyed each one. The standard was exceptional.

Dishes produced ranged from Chilli Con Carne with Garlic Ciabatta & Chicken Tikka with Mint Yoghurt to Pesto Pasta with Bacon and Tomatoes & Garlic Salmon with Asparagus on a bed of pureed Butternut Squash.

After much deliberation the winners were announced as Ellie Jenkins for her home reared Lamb Chops in Rosemary and Red wine Jus with mashed Potato and Carrots; and Courtney Jones with her Garlic Salmon with a crispy skin and Asparagus on a bed of pureed Butternut Squash.

The pupils worked independently for an hour and produced top quality dishes. Mr Powell commented that he enjoys cooking but “I couldn’t cook like that”.

Miss Knight will be accompanying Ellie Jenkins and Courtney Jones to Bridgend College for the regional finals on the 24th November.

We wish the girls the very best of luck.

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Mission Discovery – Kings College London

On the 12th July Kiera White, and myself (Ellie Matthews) travelled to King’s College London, with 45 other students from R-CT- to complete a five day project. The project was for International Space School Educational Trust (ISSET) with NASA in the hope that it would be launched onto the international space station. Unfortunately our group did not win overall but we had an amazing week!

We were introduced to Chris Barber (the founder of ISSET), Mike Foale (an astronaut), Dr Julie Keeble (a pharmacology lecturer), Sarah Murray (Assistant Chief of EVA, Robotics and Crew Systems at NASA) and Ben (our mentor).  We were put to work to create a team name and mission patch. A mission patch is a special badge designed by the crew of a space mission which is then worn by the astronauts. We voted on the best ones and our team won both votes. The final competition of the day was to try and safely land an egg after it is dropped from 30 feet above the ground using equipment such as parachutes and balloons.  The team with the egg that did not break and had the lowest expenditure won. Unfortunately our team did not win, even though our egg didn’t break. This competition was based on how NASA safely landed the Mars Rover on Mars and space craft on the moon.

On Tuesday the lectures started and the real competition began.  The first lecture was presented by Sarah on her journey to become the Assistant Chief of EVA for NASA and how her job has influenced the missions sent up to the ISS. This was followed by Mike Foales’ experiences as an astronaut and his time in the international space station. Throughout the day we really got to understand the issues of  iving in space and how difficult it is for the astronauts to adapt to the microgravity environment, this  gave us a really good place to start on our research into our experiment. When we began designing our experiment we looked at very basic ideas and built on them until we had a solid idea, it was very important for us to keep our experiment simple but relevant so it had the largest impact, increasing our chance of our experiment winning.


Wednesday was focused on how humans react to being in a microgravity environment, the problems caused by the way fluid is redistributed around the body and how muscle and bone mass is lost when in space. This created restrictions on the experiment which were further complicated by the fact we only had a 10cmX10cmX5cm box to do the experiment in.  In the evening we had the chance to talk to and ask questions via a video link with Scott Kelly, an astronaut currently at the ISS carrying out a one year study on how space affects the body in comparison to his twin who is on earth. This was really fascinating and amazing to be a part of.


The last two days were focused on our experiment. We had a day and a half to complete it in our groups and create a presentation. We presented in small groups to two judges and then the best experiments went into the final. In the final we presented to everybody on mission discovery and a whole panel of judges. The winning experiment will be launched onto the international space station in the next few years.

The whole week was fun filled and we would definitely do it all again. We met loads of lovely people who we had an amazing week with. If you get the opportunity to go take it and enjoy yourself because we know we did.


Champion synchronised skater Georgia

6th form student Georgia Guildford has been ice skating for years and last year made the British team for the World Synchronised Skating Championships.  Here’s a report on that event.

Team Spirit, British Synchronised Ice Skating Champions are back from representing Great Britain in the World Synchronised Skating Championships 2014 held in Courmayeur, Italy. Georgia Guildford (then in year 11) is the youngest member of Team Spirit.

The Team arrived in Courmeyeur on the Sunday before the actual competition as it was possible to buy ice time on the Sunday, Monday and Tuesday and it’s not possible to get good ice times in Cardiff; the Team currently practice for 2 hours at 12 midnight on Fridays. The team trained flat out for 3 days, and then the unofficial practices started.  As always the skaters and supporters of The Wales & West Synchro Skating Club (WWSSC) left a lasting impression at every practice, the International Skating Union volunteers were joining in with the Team “sing alongs” before the team took to the ice, and the Team received so many amazing comments about how polite and friendly they were.  

 Katrina said “Their actual performance in the Short Program, skating to “Where Have You” by Rhianna, on Friday, was the best they had ever skated it.  I was on pins, I knew they had it in them and couldn’t have been anymore prouder to see them do it at the World Championships. Their marks reflected their amazing skate, we read the PDF score sheet and had a debrief on something’s that we could tweak ready for the free the following day and they walked out the rink full off determination to skate the free even better the following day”.  

In the Free Program, on Saturday, skating to “Bust Your Windows” Jazmine Sullivan, Katrina said “My god they were so confident walking out of the changing rooms, it was very unnerving seeing them with not an ounce of nerves (well if they had nerves they didn’t show it).  They were so focused and determined to have a good skate.  I, on the other hand, was a mess as always. Their free skate was the best I have EVER seen them skate, with just one fall (perfectly understandable when you’re skating on a blade don’t you think?) they left me drained.  The crowd loved their Creative Element and they really sold it.  When the marks came up we just screamed.  Team Spirit had their best Technical Score, and to accomplish that at The Worlds is just amazing, finishing in First place in their group and 21st overall”.   

Here’s a video of their short programme – Georgia is the one being lifted.


We’ve been re-accredited with the NACE Cymru Challenge Award!

We’re delighted to announce that last Friday, we were re-accredited with the NACE Challenge Award for excellence in provision for More Able and Talented pupils. 

NACE Chief Executive Rowena Gaston said:

“Y Pant School has worked hard to win the NACE Challenge Award Re-accreditation status. It has shown itself to be committed to developing a school where all pupils are challenged to be the best they can be. The more able and talented children are challenged and this helps the other learners to see what can be achieved.”

The assessors spent the day in school where they observed lessons, interviewed pupils, teachers, parents and governors and looked at  pupils’ work.

They were also impressed by the impressed by strong leadership of the school and the support and challenge provided by the governors.

You can read the full press release from NACE below.

Y Pant celebrate poster exhibition at Royal Glamorgan Hospital

Earlier this year a group of More Able and Talented pupils from the Art Department were involved in the design and production of a health campaign poster promoting the safe use of medicines. The project involving a number of schools in the RCT area was run by ‘Art is Community’ and sponsored by the Welsh Government. The eye catching designs were praised by the chief hospital pharmacist as a huge success at the official celebration on Wednesday 6th May. The exhibition of posters can be seen at the Hospital.


Students perform well at the English Speaking Union public speaking event

On Wednesday 26th November a team of Year 10 and 11 girls competed in the English Speaking Union Churchill Public Speaking competition in the Training Centre Wales.

Lauren Pickens performed expertly in her role as Speaker.  Lauren had 30 minutes at the start of the competition to meet the two other members of her team and brief them on the 5 minute speech she had prepared with Maddie Colcombe that analysed the impact of 24 hour news on modern day society.  Several teachers from other schools congratulated Lauren on her delivery and interesting points.  She was quizzed by the Questioner from the opposing team and answered questions articulately destroying any opposing arguments!

Tamsin Penberthy took charge of the difficult role of Chairperson.  Her role involved leading the discussion, keeping an eye on timings and directing questions from the floor to the Guest Speaker in her team.  She guided the team through proceedings smoothly and was congratulated by the judges on her performance.

Ania Kandasamy won the coveted ‘Best Questioner’ prize!  A fantastic achievement for a first timer!  Ania had 30 minutes at the start of the competition to meet with her Guest Speaker and quiz him on his topic – she made appropriate notes and asked pertinent questions.  The judges commended her use of the word “elaborate” within her questions as this was exactly what they were looking for from the Questioners and Ania was the only one out of three to use it.

The team performed fantastically well and prepared for the competition during their own time and at break and lunch times in school.  Well done girls – you are all a real credit to the school.

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Y Pant Girls Excel at Sport!

We have some very talented sports women at Y Pant – several have recently been selected for county teams or won championships.

Under 14 County Netball Squad

Alys Edwards – year 7 (2 years earlier than anyone else)
Ffion Cooper – year 9
Niamh Coates – year 9
Aimee Williams – year 9
Ella Worgan – year 9
Ffion Cooper has also been selected for the Welsh Hub Development Squad!

Under 16 County Netball Squad

Charlotte Johnson

Under 18 County Netball Squad

Katherine Davies – year 13


Bethan Grant in Year 8 competed in a gymnastics competition in September.  She won and is now the Welsh Final Champion in her category.
She competed against others in this area of Wales and the top five from all areas went to compete.


Year 13 DT student’s work at the Welsh Innovation Awards

Congratulations to Gareth Day (Year 13 – 2013/2014) for being selected to display work at the Welsh Innovation Awards.  This prestigious event is a showcase exhibition and competition for the most innovative project work at A level and GCSE in Design & Technology.

Gareth was given the following design brief from the examination board:

Taking inspiration from an historical design movement produce a product which references the chosen style.

Below is Gareths explanation of his project:

I have always loved music so I decided to manufacture a gramophone but in the floral art nouveau styling taking inspiration from the designer Tiffany who is iconic of the style. I decided to make the amplifying horn in the shape of an aesthetically appealing flower.

My art nouveau gramophone features an in built Bluetooth speaker with an approximate range of twelve meters allowing greater versatility. The gramophone horn has been designed to look like the Tibetian Gentian flower with universal petals produced through laser cutting and forming techniques to produce the art nouveau floral style. The product contains a Tiffany inspired light section which runs off  a 12V halogen bulb which is extremely aesthetically pleasing and period to my chosen style. The gramophone base features compound mitre joints, contrasting pine segments and an art nouveau font writing of the Latin name of the flower which inspired my gramophone horn.

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You can follow the work of Design & Technology students on twitter @YPantDT.