Learn Smart Olympic Sport Celebration

Year 7 students have come up with a new event for the school sports day!

The theme of this project was based on the 2012 London Olympic Games. Pupils were encouraged to work in pairs to devise an Olympic sport event/game and promote it to their class and finally year group. The aims of the project were to;

  • Understand more about the Olympic games
  • To have the opportunity to work pairs
  • To be able to plan a sports event
  • To be able to find solutions to problems
  • To be creative thinker
  • Present findings to the whole year group in the form of a presentational stall.

How did they begin?

Pupils viewed promotional Olympic games film footage and looked at the wide range of events being taken place held in the 2012 London Olympics. They need to think about what events were missing and start making a plan. It was important for pupils to think creatively and they were encouraged to invent a sports game which could be realistically achieved.

How to begin planning the event?

Through a variety of Thinking Skills activities, pupils had to consider:

  • Health and Safety issues
  • Rules/ Criteria
  • Name
  • Resources.

They needed to refine their ideas by planning and designing a presentation to promote the event. Each team had to deliver their idea to the class and the best team were voted through to the final Celebration in the Main Hall.

 The Main Hall Celebration:

Each group had a stall which they were in charge of during the celebration. To promote their idea groups used; display boards, promotional cards, provided actual sporting equipment for people to try out, demonstrated games, showed power point and film footage.

Every stall was fantastic and it was clear the ideas and the presentation were very well designed. They were;

7B – Bungee Run 7M – Zubbering 7A – Restriction
7A – Egg and spoon race 7C – Trick Skip 7L – Obstacle Course
7G – Real Life Angry Birds 7T – Rurdles 7E – Circumferences

All Year 7 pupils were able to vote for the best stall after they viewed all the work and 7G’s Real Life Angry Birds was voted both the Best Sporting idea and the Best Display!

Year 12 School Return Date

There will be a welcome back meeting in the Main Hall for all year 12 students who intend to continue their studies into year 13. The meeting will take place on Monday 11th June at 10am. The only students who should not attend are those who have a lesson period 2. This takes priority and these students should see Mr Sykes at 10.30.

Thanks

D.Sykes, A.Purcell and G.Swallow

Deputy Head’s Blog

I hope everyone had a lovely weekend and that you all enjoyed the sun and The Ospreys’ glorious victory against Leinster.  What with Chelsea winning the Champions League it has been a great few weeks of sport!

The global reach of Y Pant staff is very evident on our website this week.  The latest blogs from Miss Holt and Mr Pearsall from China and Afghanistan respectively make for fascinating reading with real insights into some of the cultural differences between those countries and our own.  We wish them all the very best.  Mr Owen Thomas is about to head to Los Angeles (Sunset Boulevard no less) to see the American opening of his play ‘Richard Parker’.  Having been lucky enough to see the play in Cardiff a few years ago I can confidently say that it is bound to be a hit with American audiences.  Good luck (break a leg?), Mr Thomas.

I would like to call attention to the fact that letters regarding school uniform will be issued to students and posted on the website this week.  Please look out for them.  I would also like to take a moment to thank the Friends of Y Pant for their unstinting hard work in this enterprise.

You will also see that there have been changes to our arrangements for Activities Day in the summer term.  Hopefully, everyone will be able to find activities which they will enjoy.

It was my great pleasure to be able to visit our Year 11 Art Exhibition last week.  As with previous years, the quality of the work and the talent on display made me extremely proud to be part of Y Pant.  Many thanks to my colleagues in the Art Department and, especially, congratulations to the pupils themselves.

Finally, a few words about some important personnel changes in the school brought about by the pending retirements of Mr Tucker, Mr Owen and Mrs Hoare.  I’ll say a few words about these esteemed colleagues in a later blog but here are the changes: before Easter it was my great honour to be appointed Headteacher; this week Mr Andy Hurley was appointed Deputy Headteacher to replace me; Ms Ceri Richmond, currently Head of Geography at Brynteg School, was appointed Assistant Headteacher (from a field of 107 applicants!); Ms Valle Fernandez was appointed to the post of teacher of Spanish.  All of these posts will commence from September 2012.  We will, of course, be very sad to say goodbye to our colleagues but we look forward to welcoming Ms Richmond and Ms Fernandez to Y Pant.

More changes to come, though, as this week we appoint new English teachers as well as a new Head of English.  I’ll keep you posted.

Envirovision 2012 – Y Pant’s Entry & Media Competition

The Music and Media Studies departments are running an exciting music video competition this term. We are challenging groups of pupils to take one of our original Envirovision songs and use the music and lyrics to create their very own music video.

The competition is open to pupils in all years and you will be able to use the recording and editing facilities in both the Music and Media Studies departments. All the videos produced will be judged by an expert panel and there will be a prize for the winning group.

If you want to get involved, simply pick which Envirovision song you want to create a video for (there are five to choose from) and submit your music video by Friday 29th June 2012

Y Pant has a brilliant track record at Envirovision, winning last year.  This year students have been hard at work again.  Their new song is called “Don’t Drop It, Just Stop It!”

We won in 2011 with this song, “Living in a Bubble”.  Read more…

 In 2010 Y Pant won with “Visual Pollution”.  Read more…

 And in 2008 our entry was Recycling is the New Direction.

Lastly – “Pick it Up”

Mr Thomas heads to the Hollywood Fringe Festival

For the first two weeks following the half term holiday I shall be in Los Angeles as my play ‘Richard Parker’ has been invited to appear at the Hollywood Fringe Festival on the back of a successful run at last years Edinburgh Fringe Festival. I am hugely grateful to Mr Tucker and the Governing Body for allowing me to do this. During the time I am away I shall be updating this blog to let you know how myself and the show are getting on and hopefully proving that I am not just on holiday!

The show previewed in Southampton last Saturday and went down really well. This weekend the show will be heading to York before a final farewell to Wales performance at the Atrium in Cardiff on Friday 1st June. The Cardiff performance is free and will be held at 6.00pm.

I have been having my work performed across the UK for the last 10 years, but this is the first time my work has been performed in the United States. I am rather excited about this!

Fringe Poster

Y Pant Activities Day 2012

Activities Day takes place this year on 17th July.  All students in years 7-10 have been given a menu of the activities both on and off-site.  They need to pick their top 3 activities by ordering them from 1 – 3 and hand their form into their form tutor ASAP.  Any students not picking an activity will be allocated one of the on-site activities running.

Students do not need to bring money in for activities at this stage.

Salam alaykum Y Pant from Sergeant Pearsall in Afghanistan

Mr Pearsall and the winners of the Army Challenge Cup in 2006 including Adam Clayton
Mr Pearsall and the winners of the Army Challenge Cup in 2006 including Adam Clayton

Salam alaykum Y Pant. Greetings from sunny Afghanistan where I’ve been working for the last 9 weeks. I hope you had an enjoyable Easter break and that you are energised for an important Summer term of learning. The past 9 weeks have certainly been a steep learning curve for me and I imagine Adam Clayton, an ex- Y Pant pupil who left in 2007. We bumped into each other in the Camp Bastion cookhouse before we both flew out to our respective patrol bases. Adam was part of a team of eight from Y Pant who won the EBP Army Challenge Cup in 2006. This may or may not be due to the fact that they were the only team with a crusty old Army veteran as a teacher.  Anyway I sincerely wish Adam a safe tour and hope he finds his time in Helmand as interesting and rewarding as I am so far.

I am in a patrol base in the Kopak district of Nad e Ali attached to an Infantry Company from the Royal Anglian Regiment who are recruited from the East of England. Our Company also has troops in 4 smaller checkpoints around the district and I spend my time visiting and patrolling from these different locations. Our main area of operations is in the ‘green zone’, a fertile agricultural region that is irrigated by the large Nahr-e-Bugra canal to the north. However our troops also patrol into the desert area called the ‘Dashte’ to the north of the ‘NEB’ canal.

Seargent Pearsall meets the locals
Sergeant Pearsall meets the locals
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Tanks: slightly more comfortable than the school minibus

Living conditions are comfortable but basic in the patrol base. The majority of us live in camp beds in large Army tents. We wash, shower and do our laundry by pumping water by hand from a well. This is a technique that would have been widely used in our communities at the beginning of the 20th Century and was used by Mr Sweet in Merthyr Tydfil until quite recently I believe. To do laundry, you fill bucket, put in washing powder and clothes, scrub and rinse out. To shower, you fill bucket, put in shower gel and yourself, scrub and then tip bucket over yourself. A little tip there for those of you off to university.

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Sergeant Pearsall meeting a local family in Helmand province
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Troops in the poppy fields - farmers are helped to find alternative markets for their crops rather than selling them to the Taliban

In the patrol base we have a chef with a field kitchen and a dining tent. There are fresh food rations and the food is of a very high standard especially considering the working conditions. We have access to 2 laptops between us with slow Internet access and a communal television that shows BFBS (British Forces Broadcasting Service) programmes. Out in the checkpoints the conditions are much more basic; no Internet or television and the food is all made from tinned or packet rations. Access to power sockets and night time lighting is also limited in the checkpoints which means plenty of reading by torchlight or Kindles for some.

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Troops on patrol

I divide my time between my main patrol base, where I have computer access, can write up reports and phone my Headquarters, and the 4 checkpoints where I go out on patrols and meet the locals. We take an interpreter out on patrol with us and I speak to the farmers in the fields and groups of locals and elders in the villages. I ask them about a range of issues that affect them; agriculture, security, freedom of movement, access to water, irrigation, education and health. Unfortunately this is an area that has been especially hard hit by conflict in the past few years. Those of you who saw the Channel 5 series ‘Royal Marines in Afghanistan’ would be familiar with the area that I am working in. As a consequence of the conflict there has been a lack of development in the area; there are no schools or health facilities in the district. The area has become comparatively secure due to the hard work and commitment of the Royal Anglians (previously the Mercian Regiment and Royal Marines) and our partner forces; the Afghan National Army (ANA) and Afghan National Police (ANP).  We are now in a position where we can mentor and guide the Government of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan (GIRoA) in implementing plans to improve public services in this district to improve the quality of life for its people. This is the job of the Military Stabilisation and Support Team (MSST) of which I am the representative in this area.

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Sergeant Pearsall works with local troops

As the temperature rises here in Afghanistan the patrols get tougher and tougher. At the moment the thermometer is hitting about 38 degrees Celsius and will rise to a peak of 50 degrees in June and July. This is tough going if you’re reading a book next to a swimming pool in an all inclusive resort on your Summer holidays. Imagine being fully covered up, wearing 35 plus kilogrammes of body armour, weaponry and ammunition, water and rations, specialist communication equipment, helmet and eye protection and then trudging for hours through mud and deep irrigation ditches. Let me tell you it’s tougher than sitting through one of Mr Browne’s Physics lessons.

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Securing local communities

Now that exams time is upon us take inspiration from the troops who toil over here on a daily basis to make a more secure and sustainable future for others. Success is achieved through hard work and determination in whatever challenges you decide to tackle. There will be times when you will start to feel the pressure and feel that it would be easier to avoid the pain of failure by not trying or giving up. Like the soldier under the baking sun who is drenched in sweat, whose skin is burning and whose muscles are screaming for relief; grit your teeth, set your sights on your objectives and work hard to achieve them. There is no failure in trying your best and making the most of your opportunities. Like the soldier who finishes the patrol, removes his heavy burden and relaxes with a bottle of isotonic water and bowl of pasta whilst sharing a laugh with his friends, it is the knowledge that you have endured hardship and self sacrifice to achieve your goals that will allow you to sleep easy at night.

There is a phrase in the military; “Train hard; Fight easy.”

Revise well and discipline yourself. Put together a routine for study that will enable you to focus on your studies as efficiently as possible. Turn off Facebook! The world doesn’t stop turning because you haven’t updated your profile on a minute by minute basis. If you lack self discipline ask your parents to unplug and lock away your wireless router for specific hours in the day. You will open your results envelopes in August with the clear conscience that you could have not done any better. The soldier who returns from conflict or the athlete who competes in the Olympics will possess the quiet confidence that they pushed themselves to their limits and met the challenges that were set them. Y Pant School and your family equip you with the tools to succeed. You are the only one who can decide whether to use those tools or not.

Good luck with your exams and I hope to see all in the not too distant future. Onwards and upwards.

 

Deputy Head’s Blog

The main exams period is nearly upon us.  From next week onwards Key Stage 4 pupils and Year 12 students will be sitting important external exams.  It is crucial that these exams are taken extremely seriously and that all pupils prepare thoroughly.  For Year 10 pupils it is also important that you think about the regulations surrounding external exams: you wouldn’t want an exam paper cancelled because of something silly or careless.  Year 12’s leaving and return dates are published elsewhere on the website; please familiarise yourself with them.

Congratulations to Alex Stallworthy for her achievement in volleyball.  Fantastic news!

The Year 11 Leavers’ Assembly took place last week.  It was a tremendous pleasure to be able to award the pupils in this year group their Progress Files.  These documents record the achievements and experiences of a young person’s time in secondary school and are highly valued by employers and colleges.  It was also my great pleasure to be able to present Ellie Harvard with the overall EBP award and Lewis Miller with a special award for 100% attendance over 5 years in the school.  Tremendous achievements and well done to both!  Good luck to all those Year 11 leavers in their exams and in their futures wherever they may be.

I hope everyone has a great weekend and that the weather improves!

Y Pant Pupil in UK School Games Volleyball Team

Alex Stallworthy from Y Pant plays volleyball as outside hitter with Team South Wales.  They are now the National Shield Champions 2012 and also after a fantastic season, have been promoted to the National League Division 1 which will see them playing matches across the UK against top teams such as a Portsmouth, Devon, Loughborough and Salford.  Alex has also been given the role as Court Manager at this year’s Sainsbury’s UK School Games at the ExCeL London Exhibitions Centre from 6th May – 9thMay 2012

volleyball

Good luck goes to Ffion Stallworthy representing Wales u16 girls and Conor Robins representing Wales u17 boys at the Sainsbury’s UK School Games.

Should anyone be interested in taking up this fast moving, hard hitting, dynamic sport then the Cardiff Celts Junior Squads train on a Wednesday evening at Glamorgan Sports Park between 6 – 8pm or contact them via email cardiffceltsvc@gmail.com