Friday, 28 February 2014

28 February 2014

It was a busy first week back after half term, with lots going on in all areas of the school. On Wednesday, the Year 10 girls presented a cheque to the Liverpool Women's Hospital. The girls raised £1424.64 through the 2013 Year 10 Christmas Post, over a period of just three days! During assembly, the girls learned a little about the amazing work the hospital does and where the money raised will go.

Two Sixth Form girls are also looking to raise money - for a once-in-a-lifetime trip to Thailand, where they can gain hands-on experience in the medical profession. Katie Nightingale and Sarah Richards are hoping to become doctors, so their trip this summer will give them a valuable insight into what to expect from their chosen career.

The Year 7 girls were off timetable for a crime-themed enrichment day on Wednesday. The year group took part in four different activities throughout the day: Gorilla Kidnap, Cops and Robbers, Murder Mystery, and Bomb Disposal! Testing their teamwork and lateral thinking, these challenges were a lot of fun as well as a great way to develop their skills.

It's been a great week for the Junior Boys as well! Artwork created by forty-eight Year 6 boys is currently being displayed in the The Market Place in Bolton town centre. This large exhibition of their work is very impressive, and well worth a visit.

The Year 6 boys also shone on the football pitch this week. Despite breezing through the heats and their semi-final of the IFSA North West championships, held at Bolton School, they were bested by Bury Grammar School in the final. However, their time in the competition is not over: the first and second place teams will both go through the ISFA national final!

Bolton School also hosted the Physics Olympics 2014 this week. Sixteen Ogden Trust Partnership schools from Bolton and the surrounding area took part, sending teams of four Year 9 pupils to compete in physics-based challenges throughout the day. There was a great spirit of friendly competition throughout the day, and all of the pupils who took part enjoyed the various tasks placed before them.

On Friday, Bolton School pupils from Years 10 to 13 took park in a day dedicated to learning about careers as a health professional working in the NHS and beyond. This day of lectures offered pupils a valuable insight into the realities and challenges of this career - as well as the wonderful rewards it can also offer. Amongst the various speakers throughout the day, two Old Girls and one Old Boy were able to return to Bolton School to speak about their experiences.

Monday, 17 February 2014

14 February 2014

The highlight of this week was undoubtedly the Bolton School and Friends Gala Concert, which was held on Wednesday evening. Organised by the Boys' Division, the concert featured all of the Year 7 boys, a number of joint bands, choirs and orchestras, and the vocal talents of four local primary schools! The Medley (sung by Year 7 and the primary schools) and the evening's grand Finale are available to watch online.

The Junior Girls at Hesketh House enjoyed their Music Festival this week. On Monday and Tuesday, all of the girls were given the opportunity to enjoy the festivities in the hall. The quality of the music was excellent throughout, with even the external adjudicators commenting on how great the girls' performances!

This week we also learned that the Junior Girls' U9s and U11s Chess Teams have made it through to the semi-final of the English Primary Schools' Chess Association's national championship!

Not to be out-done, the Junior Boys' U9s and U11s Chess Teams will also be competing in the semi-final! With excellent scores in their previous round (U9s 21.5 and U11s 29.5) they are strong contenders, so this is sure to be an unmissable event!

For the career-conscious pupils in Years 10 to 13, there have been a number of inspirational events this week.

Old Boy Mike Shaw returned to the school on Monday to give Boys' and Girls' Division pupils from Year 10 up an insight into a career in law. The talk began with a general overview, then moved into the specifics of what they could expect in different legal fields before finally giving them some hints and tips to make their future applications stand out!

The Girls' Division invited two Old Girls back to talk to Year 11 about their adventures after leaving Bolton School. Georgina Carter told the girls about her exciting experiences with Teach First, while Rachel Flanders shared the epic story of her Atlantic crossing - both inspirational tales, though for very different reasons!

This week also saw the KPMG Enterprise Trophy final, during which the teams pitched their business ideas 'Dragon's Den style' to a panel of judges. Although all of the teams were commended for their innovative ideas, "[Scan] and Edit" were announced as the overall winners of the competition.

In the summer of 2014, KPMG will once again team up with Bolton School to provide two unique paid work placements to a lucky boy and girl from the Sixth Form. Old Girl Katie Clinton returned last Friday to launch the competition for the fourth year running.

The Sixth Form Boys were also encouraged to studying abroad this week. Old Boy Tom Whittaker, who went to university in the US and now works for the University of British Columbia, talked to them about their options and his own experiences, both with American and Canadian universities.

It has also been a great week for the Boys' Division sports teams!

On Monday, the Boys' Division celebrated the centenary of Gymnastics in the school with the annual Year 7 Gymnastics Competition! Old Boy George Farnworth (Class of 1957) was a member of several school sports teams, including the Gymnastics Team, and returned to award the hundred-year-old Challenge Cup to the overall winner, Andrew Hurt.

George also returned later in the week for the Year 8 Vaulting Competition. There was a high standard of ability in evidence from all of the boys who took part, but the overall winner was Adam Salisbury. George presented him with the cup, the runners up with medals, and all of the competitors with certificates of commendation. On both occasions, George shared a little of his wisdom from the past 57 years since he left the school.

Last weekend, Year 12 student Aaron Winstanley and James Barker from Year 11 played last weekend for national champions City of Manchester in the British Water Polo Championships. They joined several Old Boys who are also on the team.

Aaron is one of several boys from Years 8 to 12 who have been selected from the most recent GB team try-outs. These boys will join a number of their peers who are already on the GB programme, meaning that the school's World Class players now represent the country in the U14, U15, U16, U17 and U19 teams!

This excellent news comes on top of the school's Water Polo teams' successes in their most recent matches. U18s team sailed through their second round in the English Schools' Swimming Association Water Polo Championship, while the U14s team have now made it through their first round despite the other teams having a significant age advantage.

The U13s Rugby Team has also achieved success this week. On Thursday, they took on Audenshaw and, despite a closely fought match which ended in a draw, Bolton School as the away team took the spoils. They will now compete in the Lancashire Plate Final!

The senior boys have also been kept busy making way for a colony of bees which is set to arrive in the summer! The 'Bee Club' spent a sunny winter's lunchtime assembling frames which will become the basis for the hives.

Meanwhile, the Year 10 girls were given an eye-opening presentation about the realities of the First World War. Dressed as a British soldier and with a backdrop that evoked the trenches, Dave Thirlwall from Danelaw Living History focused not on dates and names of important battles, but on what the soldiers – from all of the countries involved – would have dealt with during World War One. Despite the heavy material, the girls were completely captivated throughout the afternoon.

The Girls' Division also welcomed Julie Gray, a representative of the Children's Adventure Farm Trust, to the school this week to hand over the money raised last term. The cheque for £1203.50 will make an enormous difference to the charity, and Julie took the opportunity to thank all of the girls for their efforts during morning assembly.

Friday, 7 February 2014

7 February 2014

There have been lots of exciting events going on at Bolton School this week!

Last Friday after school, the Year 4 and Year 5 swimmers from Hesketh House Junior Girls’ School won both their relay heat races at the Bolton Primary Schools' Swim Championship.

We also received word this week that three pupils from the Boys’ Division Senior School have been congratulated for their work in the annual Jowett Sendelar Classics Essay Competition. George Blackwell came in first place, Luke Cavanaugh was placed ninth, and Andrew Lee was highly commended.

Meanwhile in the Girls’ Division the competition is hotting up for this year’s French Spelling Bee. Nine Year 7 girls have been making preparations this week for the school final on Monday, which will cut them down to four!

Sixth Formers from both Divisions enjoyed a French immersion day on Tuesday. Special guest speaker Richard Peltier led a number of workshops on relevant global issues which relate to the A-Level course and encouraged the pupils to stretch their language skills.

The school’s alumni have been really active this week as well. On Monday, we put Old Boy Andy Paterson, who is now a film producer, into the spotlight. He talked about his amazing and varied career and his latest film, which he also co-wrote: The Railway Man.

Wednesday’s Old Girls’ Lunch had a very special visitor: Kevin Davies came to collect a cheque on behalf of KiDs of Bolton following on from the Old Girls’ Association Christmas Market in November which raised £400.

The school also received an incredibly generous donation from the family of Old Girl Nora Allsop this week. Her daughter, granddaughter and great-granddaughter - who is currently a Year 8 pupil - gave Nora’s school books to the archive along with an invaluable set of photos documenting the Girls’ Division Swiss Tour of 1930, the 1931 summer camp, and two sports days.

The Girls' Division senior swimming team competed in the Bolton Schools' Swimming Championship final this week. Their hard work during training and huge effort on the day earned them first place overall in their final competition of the season!

Finally, the week ended with the school’s first Literacy Day, in conjunction with the Bolton Children’s Fiction Award. Sixty Year 6 pupils from fifteen local primary schools took part in a range of workshops based on the shortlisted books. They had a fantastic time exploring the themes and ideas, and were even able to take home copies of the books at the end!