GCSE CONCERT | Our GCSE Music students took to the Music School Auditorium stage to show off their skills in a concert on Thursday, 16 November. It was an eclectic programme, with music ranging from ‘Bow-Chicka-Wow-Wow’ to Beethoven and Metallica!
Thank you to everyone who attended and to our talented performers for providing such an entertaining evening – the audience were well and truly ‘wowed’!
WOSPS AND SPS RUGBY
A big congratulations to St Leonards students Archie Clarke and Robbie Logan who have been selected for the Scottish Prep Schools XV rugby squad! Archie joins the line-up for the second consecutive year.
Both Year 9 boys currently play with the WOSPS (West of Scotland Prep Schools) team, alongside fellow St Leonards player Tristan Bruce.
Archie, Robbie and the rest of the SPS squad beat Edinburgh at Greenyards in Melrose on Sunday, 19 November.
DUKE OF EDINBURGH
DUKE OF EDINBURGH | On Sunday, 8 October, 29 pupils set off for Balquhidder for a day of training for the Duke of Edinburgh award. The pupils were divided into Bronze and Silver award groups of between 5 and 7 before embarking on field craft and map-reading activities with instructors.
They then had a chance to put their new-found skills to the test with a 3-hour walk in the glorious Perthshire countryside. The rain stayed at bay and everyone enjoyed leading their group through the forest. Perfect preparation for the real deal in spring/summer next year!
ACT OF REMEMBRANCE
ACT OF REMEMBRANCE | On Friday, 10 November, students and staff gathered to remember those who fought for our country, and who lost their lives in conflict at our Armistice Day Assembly.
The Senior School welcomed Reverend Graeme Beebee of St Leonards Church in St Andrews, who spoke about the act of remembrance and the deep cost of war, and who encouraged us to look forward in hope, praying for peace in the world we live in today.
Our Head Girl and Head Boy also laid a wreath, on behalf of St Leonards School, at the Armistice Day Commemoration at the war memorial in St Andrews on Sunday, 12 November.
Our donations to Poppy Scotland, through the sale of poppies in the school, totalled £291.70. Sincere thanks to all who contributed to such a worthy cause.
THE JUNOR GALLERY
THE JUNOR GALLERY | Year 12 Theory of Knowledge students visited The Junor Gallery in St Andrews on Friday, 24 November, to view the current exhibition 'Maps of the Imagination'. The theme tied in nicely with the group's recent lectures and discussions on art and the imagination.
ST ANDREWS TRI SERIES CUP
ELECTRON MICROSCOPE | Lucky Year 12 students had the chance to visit the multi-million-pound electron microscopes at St Andrews University this month as part of their study of the ultrastructure of cells. The students were given a tour of the facilities and shown images that can be obtained by using the microscopes. Thanks to an informative talk by final-year Biology student Evelyn, Year 12 learnt about the history of the development of microscopes and completed activities to identify structures within cells from real images. Thank you to Evelyn and the Medical Sciences Department at St Andrews University for hosting us!
ART DEPARTMENT ROUND-UP
ART DEPARTMENT ROUND-UP | Year 10 kicked off their coursework this term with a new and experimental workshop on musical mark making. They listened to six contrasting pieces of music from Handel to Ed Sheeran, taking in Debussy, Charlie Parker and some Rebecca Saunders along the way.
The students had to respond visually to what they were hearing by using their drawing tools, sometimes in quite unconventional ways!
The results were fantastic, with rich layering of marks and a soft velvety hue of charcoal for Handel, and hard, sharp 4H jagged lines for the work of Jon Hopkins.
These initial drawings served as the starting point for an intaglio printmaking project, with the students going on to select elements from their work to develop into complex, highly individual collagraph plates. From there, they printed first in monochrome and then introduced elements of colour.
They are pictured above showing off some of their works in progress!
Year 12 student Amy Ferrier visited the Scottish artist Dominique Cameron in her studio as part of her IB Art studies.
Amy has been working on tree studies, both in the studio and on location at nearby Tentsmuir Forest, and with Dominique spending much of her time working from life and, currently, on tree studies, it was the perfect pairing!
The Fife-based artist believes that in order to portray the essence of a place, you have to be in it; you have to be part of the landscape and the weather.
This artistic practise is also evident in the work of another influential Scottish artist, Joan Eardley, whose work Amy was able to admire at the exhibition ‘A Sense of Place’, thanks to an Art Department trip to Edinburgh earlier this year.
The students benefit greatly from having opportunities to interact with other artists in their studio environments, and in Amy’s case, she particularly enjoyed an animated discussion with Dominique about technique and composition. Dominique was really impressed by Amy’s drawings done with a twig dipped in ink!
So if you’re out for a walk in Tentsmuir Forest and hear strange sounds in the trees, it will probably just be Amy fighting to hold down her gessoed cartridge paper in the wind, in order to capture the moment in much the same way as J.M.W. Turner and Joan Eardley did before her!
Pupils in Year 8 were challenged to design their own packaging for an innovative new product of their choosing as part of the MYP programme.
From water bottle carriers to cookie-cupcakes, watermelon lollies and ‘Fishy Friends’ crackers, everyone put in a huge amount of effort before presenting their finished pieces and sketchbooks to Mrs Rae and the judges.
After some tough deliberation, the first prize of two chocolate £50 notes went to Rowan, who had really engaged with the project brief to create a water bottle carrier for basketball players. He had thought of everything from sponsorship to brightly coloured paint splatters for his cleverly designed logo.
Second prize was awarded to Cole for his ‘Spritstick’ packaging for an exciting product for spraying juice out of soft fruits. The eye-catching bright green design was based on a close-up photograph of lime peel to show the texture of the fruit. He also thought long and hard about the font for the branding, eventually deciding on a clear, easy-to-read style.
In third place was Ava, for her fun ‘Fishy Friends’ packaging for cheesy crackers. The logo – a goldfish wearing jeans – was a hit with the judges and would certainly grab a shopper’s attention on the shelf!
Here they are posing with their winning projects, accompanied by the Art Department's resident dogs Chloe and Dylan!
25 GENOMES | Year 13 Biology students were fortunate to have the chance to take part in The Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute's '25 Genomes' project about 'mapping nature's code'. The Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute is one of the world's leading genomics research centres and was the UK home for the Human Genome Project, which revealed the entire DNA code of life.
To celebrate its 25th anniversary, the Institute set up a project to decode the DNA of 25 UK species for the first time. As part of this exciting project, St Leonards students joined a live web chat with scientists to discuss details of each species that could have its genome sequenced. Students then voted for the species' genome they wanted to see sequenced. The results of the vote will be revealed shortly!
NEON NIGHT | It was 'Neon Night' in Bishopshall boarding house on Saturday, 25 November. Cue UV paints, t-shirt decorating and lots and lots of glow sticks! The girls had a fantastic time from creating their own glow-in-the-dark outfits to painting each other's faces in bright colours. The kitchen tables were laid out with plenty of snacks to keep everyone going as they partied in the dark!
SHOE BOX APPEAL
SHOE BOX APPEAL | Students and staff have been getting into the festive spirit by filling more than 100 shoe boxes for the Blythswood Care Christmas Shoe Box Appeal 2017.
Organised by a group of Year 12 students for their IB CAS project, the response to the appeal has been overwhelmingly positive with a total of 101 boxes packed and wrapped in Christmas paper.
The shoe boxes will be delivered to disadvantaged children, young people and adults in Eastern Europe and Pakistan as a means of providing them with essential everyday items, as well as small gifts.
Each box has been tailored to suit a specific age group and gender, and is filled with everything from toothbrushes and toiletries to hats, scarves and sweets to enjoy over the festive season.
Thank you to everyone who donated a shoe box for Blythswood and to Miss Carroll’s tutor group for organising the appeal!
PLANET PERSPECTIVE | Year 8a Physics took their lesson beyond the classroom and into our beautiful school grounds, where they learnt about the relative distances between planets in the solar system. The students’ model of the sun was the size of a 10p coin and from there, they measured out how far away each of the planets would be if they scaled the solar system down to that size. Earth, for example, was 2 yards away and the size of a grain of sand! It certainly gave our budding physicists a bit of perspective of the vast size of our solar system!
RIFLE CLUB | Every Monday after school, 12 very dedicated members of the St Leonards Rifle Club meet at the St Andrews Rifle Club for a session of target practice. As you can see from the picture on the right, St Leonards students have been practising the sport for quite a number of years! Francesca is holding up a photo taken in the early 1980s of the St Leonards girls at Rifle Club.
Anyone interested in having a go should speak to Mr Barlow.
OWN CLOTHES DAY | Senior School boys and girls swapped their smart suits and school uniform for home clothes on Friday. The ‘dress-down day’ was to raise money for Kanya Gurukul School for Abandoned Girls in India, each pupil paying £2 to take part. Thank you to everyone who supported the fundraising effort!
INTERNATIONAL UNIVERSITIES FAIR
INTERNATIONAL UNIVERSITIES FAIR | We were delighted to welcome the Council of International Schools College & University Fair to St Leonards on Friday, 10 November, for what was the only UK stop on the group’s Northern Europe tour.
The afternoon event was a chance for students in Years 11, 12 and 13 to talk ‘higher education’ with representatives from 23 different universities from across Europe, the United States and Canada.
The School Hall was bustling with students and speakers, who each made a one-minute pitch showcasing their institution. Students then had the opportunity to browse the stands, discuss course options, enquire about scholarships and ask any other questions about life after St Leonards.
Workshops also ran throughout the afternoon, with representatives sharing tips for the perfect university application.
As the only school in the UK to be visited by these universities, this was an incredible opportunity for St Leonards staff and students to explore the range of international options available to because of the IB Diploma.
On Friday evening, we welcomed parents to attend the International Universities Fair, giving them a chance to pose questions to university recruitment and admissions officers and discover more about the various paths open to their children.
An excellent information day was enjoyed by all. Thank you to the following universities for taking the time to visit St Leonards and inspire our students:
- Bishop’s University, Sherbrooke, Quebec, Canada
- College of Charleston, South Carolina, USA
- Columbia College Chicago, Illinois, USA
- Cornell University, Ithaca, New York, USA
- Denison University, Granville, Ohio, USA
- École Hôtelière de Lausanne, Switzerland
- Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, Daytona Beach, Florida, USA
- Foothill and De Anza Colleges, Los Altos Hills, California, USA
- Glion Institute of Higher Education, Clarens, Switzerland
- Hult International Business School, London
- IE University, Sergovia, Spain
- Klu – Kühne Logistics University, Hamburg, Germany
- Lawrence University, Appleton, Wisconsin, USA
- Loyola Marymount University, Los Angeles, California, USA
- Lynn University, Boca Raton, Florida, USA
- Miami University-Oxford, Oxford, Ohio, USA
- Nova Southeastern University, Fort Lauderdale, Florida, USA
- Ryerson University, Toronto, Ontario, Canada
- Savannah College of Art and Design, Atlanta, Georgia, USA
- The University of Akron, Ohio, USA
- University of Colorado Boulder, Colorado, USA
- University of Notre Dame, Indiana, USA
- Wagner College, Staten Island, New York, USA
Our next higher education event will be our UK Universities Fair in the new year.
A DAY AT THE ZOO
A DAY AT THE ZOO | Year 12 ESS students boarded a bus bound for Edinburgh Zoo on Wednesday, 29 November, for a day of workshops all about the Asian Songbird Crisis. Together with other schools from across Scotland, the students explored the range of threats affecting Asian rainforests by visiting species. The group also looked at the illegal bird trade and had a chance to get up close and personal with some of the animals. Here they are handling a milk snake, which mimics a coral snake, and a bearded dragon!
ROTARY LEADERSHIP PROGRAMME
ROTARY LEADERSHIP PROGRAMME | Members of the Rotary Club of St Andrews enjoyed a talk from Year 13 student Annie Lennem at their lunch meeting on Wednesday, 22 November.
Annie spoke about her amazing week-long leadership experience at Abernethy Nethybridge outdoor centre in Perthshire, which was made possible thanks to the fundraising efforts of the Rotary Clubs of Kilrymont, North Fife and St Andrews.
Each year, the organisation selects one student from St Leonards and one student from Madras College to benefit from the Rotary Youth Leadership Awards programme, which aims to develop young people as strong leaders, communicators and problem solvers.
Speaking at the Scores Hotel in St Andrews, Annie told members how the RYLA experience enabled her to grow her confidence, become more assertive and build on her public speaking skills.
‘Overall, I found RYLA to be a fantastic experience and I am so glad I applied for the course. I cannot thank the Rotary enough for choosing me to be part of RYLA 2017 and for raising the funds to support me at the camp.’
- Annie Lennem (Year 13)
QML BOOK CLUB