Last week, Harry Bradford, Alex Davies and Mollie McFarlane attended the fourth Comenius Conference in Germany. They stayed with pupils from the Willigis Gymnasium, Mainz.
During the visit our pupils presented themselves, our school, our country and our multi-cultural mask project. They also worked on several activities linked to the theme of a multi-cultural society: an art project entitled “Doors into Europe”, a caricatures competition and a group discussion based on how societies and languages are changing due to foreign influences including immigration, culture, social media etc. All pupils involved reflected well upon these questions and came up with unique and interesting responses, especially for this question – “The USA has been described as a melting pot where cultures have melted together and formed a new culture, the American one. Others have described the USA as a salad bowl, where you can clearly see the different cultures which together make up the American society. Which of these two terms, melting pot or salad bowl, will be the best to describe the future European society?” Answer – “it depends on the chef!”
During the visit, our pupils were extremely lucky to attend the Mainz Carnival, also known as Mainzer Fastnacht, one of the largest carnival events in Germany. The crowd gathered in Schillerplatz and observed the celebrations, parade and fancy dress! Pupils also had the opportunity to visit Frankfurt and the Museum of Communication.
Our pupils had a fantastic time in Mainz and gained a wonderful life experience.
It’s that time of year again – Christmas is approaching, and for the Performing Arts Department, that means a diary full of festive events!
We hope to bump into you at some of the following:
Tuesday 2nd December: Students will be performing on the Glanfa Stage at the Wales Millennium Centre at 1pm. The concert will be broadcast live on the Internet on the WMC website.
Wednesday 3rd December: The school brass ensemble will be performing in a concert at Llandaff Cathedral.
Thursday 4th December: We will be entertaining the Christmas meeting of the fifty-plus forum at Pontyclun Athletic Club.
Tuesday 9th December: The Pontyclun WI are hosting a group of our young singers at Pontyclun Community Centre.
Thursday 11th December: Our main Christmas concert is back in Bethel Baptist Church. Come along! The concert starts at 7.00pm and there will be a range of performers from right across the school performing a variety of Christmas classics. All are very welcome.
Friday 12th December: We will be providing entertainment at the annual Senior Citizens’ Christmas Party at Y Pant.
Monday 15th December: We will be welcoming Year 6 musicians to perform with our Year 7 pupils at our transitional Christmas concert here in school.
Friday 19th December: Our musicians will send off 2014 in style with their contribution to the final assembly.
Once we have sung, played, danced and acted our way through that lot, Y Pant’s young performers will have thoroughly earned their Christmas break!
On Wednesday 26th November 15 of our Year 9 girls had the privilege of visiting the local SONY plant. The purpose of the visit was to show the girls the opportunities that exist for them in the Technology and Engineering sectors.
The girls had a great time and got to experiment with lots of amazing new technology. They were able to have their photographs taken with celebrities and present the weather thanks to green screen technology. They also got to see how SONY were involved with goal line technology in the football world cup and watch the latest Raspberry Pi’s being made.
This trip was a really eye opening experience for the girls. They met several female engineers who all spoke of their positive experience of working in Technology and Engineering.
This trip coincides with a recent announcement from Nicky Morgan (Education Secretary for England).
Speaking at the launch of the “Your Life” campaign she said,
“Too many young people are making subject choices at the age of 15 that are holding them back for the rest of their lives”.
She went on to explain,
“A decade ago students took maths and sciences if they knew they wanted to be a doctor, a pharmacist or an engineer. But if you wanted to do something different, or even if you didn’t know what you wanted to do, and let’s be honest it takes a pretty confident 16-year-old to have their whole life mapped out ahead of them, then the arts and humanities were what you chose. Because they were useful for all kinds of jobs. Of course now we know that couldn’t be further from the truth, that the subjects that keep young people’s options open and unlock doors to all sorts of careers are the Stem subjects.”
STEM subjects are Science, Design & Technology, Engineering and Maths.
We have a careers board in the Design & Technology department that has lots of current vacancies for technical jobs both locally and nationally. I urge all students to have a good look at this board. Many students so far have been surprised by the range of jobs that studying D&T can lead to and the impressive salaries attached.
If you have any questions about any of our subjects on offer please pop in and see Mr. Draper or have a look at our web site.
There was a report on the news this morning that a Russian website is broadcasting footage from private webcams in the UK – including from children’s bedrooms. It has hacked into these as some users have not changed the logon details when they start using the webcam.
We’re not aware that anyone at Y Pant has been affected by this but suggest that parents and pupils would be wise to check they are following the correct procedures on their webcams. This mainly involves creating secure passwords. The Information Commissioner’s website has some very useful tips on this.
Rhondda Cynon Taf have put together a package of resources that provides a free copy of Microsoft Office software for all students. Unique user codes will be distributed via registration this week. The instructions for installation can be downloaded here.