The month of December has seen and end to the Assessment Weeks and a focus on identifying strengths and areas to improve. All students should now have their examination papers with them and can be using them to improve for future assessments. Since the assessments finished it has been great to see students getting back in to the routine of giving their best in lessons. Teachers have been working hard to have students engaged and enjoying their lessons as well as taking pride in the school community. It is almost impossible to list all the outstanding lessons I have seen over the last few weeks, but I will give you a taster! As January comes to an end it is great to see students taking on board the lessons they have learned from Term 1.
The French department went culinary before Christmas with their french breakfast lessons, the Year 7 students really enjoyed providing the food they had learned about and our senior students were brilliant in offering support to Ms Craig and Ms Neary. Sadly, Ms Craig would not share with us the picture of her in a beret, but she has shared some lovely photos of the students enjoying the breakfast.
Seeing students engaged in learning is what every teacher and parent wants to see, and this has been happening throughout the school this month. Ms Sobhy had her Year 8 group on task and eager to answer her questions on angles, Mr Piquer has been teaching the Year 7 how to 'Scratch' and build their own programmes using animals and games, Ms Hughes has quite literally had her students' hands on with painting as they used their own hand stencils to create designs. It isn't just the Key Stage 3 students that get to enjoy interactive learning, there has been so many opportunities for older students to take part too, including Year 11 Biology students investigating plant slides under the microscope. The Seniors are soon to be leaving us and whenever not in lessons they are focusing on revision and examination preparation, and it is great to see students using their own designated Senior Study Room to do just that.
The Senior Study room is adjacent to the library, which is a hub for many students and our librarian Ms Judith March has always running fun and educational events for students. This month "The Amazing Race" has been one of the main activities but so far this year the students have been able to take part in The Banned Books Escape Room, Mystery Box and Mystery Blurbs. We are pleased to welcome Ms Sahar Youssef who will be now working more with the Secondary library during Term 2. The activities in the library are a reminder that school is not always just about getting top grades, it is about developing the whole student and their well-being. One of the themes from the library during Term 1 was lighter bags, a lot of students carry very heavy bags which is not great for their posture and the library has been educating students on how to manage resources so they carry less weight. Some students choose to carry books are all subjects rather than the books they need just for that day.
The students at CES continue to excel outside of the classroom too, and at the start of December students took part in interschool basketball and football tournaments. The under 16 girls' basketball team deserve massive congratulations as they not only won the tournament on home soil, but dominated the league as well. Their motivation and thirst to test themselves against even better opposition is contagious and we hope to give them the opportunity to do so in the near future. Our Under 13 BSME teams are soon to return from Dubai and I look forward to sharing some stellar results with you in next months newsletter.
To help staff and students get in to the holiday spirit before the holidays the secondary floor took on some extra colour and decoration in the final week, with form groups decorating their doors with a holiday theme. Some of the classes came up with some outstanding displays and it has been helping create a happy and positive atmosphere on the top floor and I hope that in the future students will have much more to offer in terms of making their environment, bright, colourful, informative and engaging. One of the best displays has been done by the Christian Studies teachers and students which looks fantastic, and the Sisters have been working very hard and organizing the annual Shoe Box Appeal to provide the Girls Home with well needed materials.
I want to end the calendar year by saying a big thank you to all staff, students and parents for their continual work and support in making CES such a great school. I hope that everybody had a happy holiday season and it is great to see everybody refreshed and ready to continue in term 2.
Head of Secondary