Friday, 10 July 2015

10 July 2015

There were plenty of events going on in School right up until the end of term. The Year 8 girls - and staff in the English department - have been hard at work preparing for English Speaking Board (ESB) examinations. This helped the girls to develop their public speaking skills and confidence.

In recent weeks, as part of the SPACE Programme, boys in Year 10 have been completing bi-weekly volunteering at Rivington Terraced Gardens to help Rivington Heritage Trust and Groundwork Cheshire, Lancashire and Merseyside to conserve the area for future generations. Although the work is hard, the boys find it very rewarding, and they have already begun to make a difference.

Girls in Year 6 have also been working on their conservation skills this term in order to accomplish the first level of the John Muir Award. The girls used their week-long trip to Patterdale to achieve the necessary requirements: discovering and exploring a wild place, sharing their experience through poetry and art, and completing a conservation project. They also learned more about John Muir himself and the importance of conservation.

Boys' and Girls' Division pupils have had their GCSE and A Level artwork on display at the University of Bolton as part of the Best of Bolton Schools' Art and Design Exhibition. This is a fantastic opportunity for pupils' work to go on display and to show the breadth and variety of artwork in the School. Year 13 student Robyn Lomas won the Fine Art Prize for her piece.

Recently Year 12 pupil Dominic Walker took part in the ESSA Swimming Championships. He swam in the Backstroke and Medley races, earning a silver medal in both events.

There has also been great news from the Boys' Division Model UN society: they attended the WiMUN Conference last week, and not only did individuals win their debates, one of the School's two delegations won the Outstanding Delegation award! This is a fantastic achievement for a relatively new society.

Last Friday, a group of Year 10 girls visited the University of Salford to take part in 'Dragonfly' - a day of science and engineering tasks designed to give them a taste of the courses and careers available in these fields. The girls had an excellent time completing the tasks throughout the day.

There were also several events taking place last weekend: the School held a special Sports Reunion on Saturday as part of the 100/500 Celebrations. Old Boys who used to be part of the School cricket team began the festivities with a match on Friday. They teamed up with the current First Eleven cricketers to play in two mixed sides, which made for a very interesting and evenly matched game.

On the day of the Reunion itself, Old Boys and Old Girls returned to face current pupils in football, lacrosse, netball and rugby fixtures on the School grounds and a water polo match at Bolton One swimming pool. The event was attended by several Olympic athletes, including Sir Philip Craven, President of the International Paralympic Committee (IPC) and current head of the Old Boys' Association. There was a fantastic atmosphere throughout the day, which culminated in a Reunion Dinner in the evening.

Also over the weekend, the School played host to the Bolton Youth Orchestra, Salford Youth Orchestra and Bolton School Orchestra as they collaborated to put together an informal concert. Despite having only Saturday and Sunday morning to prepare, the children put on a fantastic and varied concert on the Sunday afternoon.

At the start of the week, the Boys' Division welcomed Paul Burrell, former butler to Princess Diana, to give a talk to pupils on modern history. He spoke to boys in both the Senior and Junior Schools and gave a fascinating glimpse into life in the Royal household. He also imparted some excellent advice for the future.

In the Girls' Division, Years 7 and 8 put on their annual Celebration Concert. This event focuses on the achievements of the younger pupils in the school, accompanied by performances from the girls themselves. The standard of the music was very high and made for a very enjoyable evening of entertainment.

Children in Year 2 at Beech House also put on a show before the end of term. This annual concert is a way for the children to say farewell to their Infants' School before they move on to Junior School in September. The 2015 Year 2 Concert was themed around 'travel' and pupils were able to showcase their many and various talents throughout the evening!

As the term drew to a close, it was time for the Boys' Division to award the Lyde Cup to the winning House. At the presentation assembly, Mr Wadsworth announced that Wigan House had won the Cup this year! The Headmaster also paid special tribute to Mr Wadsworth, who is retiring from his post.

Year 10 pupil Caroline Blair attended the Salters' Chemistry Camp at the University of Bath this week. She was one of 60 pupils selected for a place, and was able to use the university laboratories to carry out new and exciting experiments as part of the experience. She also stayed in the university's Halls of Residence for the duration of the camp.

This week, the Senior Girls were able to meet Peanut, the third Guide Dog the Girls' Division have sponsored so far! The Girls' Division has raised over £9,000 to sponsor Guide Dog puppies over the past seven years: an amazing achievement. It was great for the girls to be able to meet Peanut in person and receive an update on his training so far.

Sixth Formers in the Boys' Division have been hard at work fundraising throughout the year, and were able to announce in the last week of term that they have raised £2,022 for Barnardo's.

Boys' Division teacher Dr Kristy Turner has been selected to join the editorial team of the magazine 'Education in Chemistry'. Dr Turner has been a contributor to the magazine and blog for several years, and is delighted to take up this new post with the publication.

This week's Inspiring Mind is Sir Philip Craven: Bolton School pupil from 1961 to 1969 and now President of the International Paralympic Committee. In this interview, Sir Philip talks about his time at School and his sports career, and offers advice to current pupils.

Over the holidays, Sixth Formers Kate Ball and Abigail Harrison will be embarking on summer internships with KPMG! This is a really exciting opportunity for the girls to experience working for one of the 'Big Four' professional services firms in the UK, and to get an idea of what it would be like to have a career in this sector.

Next year, the School will once again host the monthly (Bolton) Historical Association lectures. More information and details about the talks can be found on the School website here.

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