A warm welcome to all of our readers, Keats College members and their families. It’s been another busy term for all of the students and staff in Keats and already this week we see our Year 11 pupils immersed in very important PPE examinations, with Year 10 pupils soon to follow with theirs. We would like to take this opportunity to wish all of our students the very best of luck in their endeavours.
Again, our wonderful Heralds have been working tirelessly behind the scenes, to bring you a ‘round up’ of all of their latest college news and events. I continue to be impressed by the strong determination and resilience from Isla and the rest of the team, as they continue to balance the demands of a hectic news schedule along with their day to day school life. We are exceptionally lucky to have such a wonderful team and look forward to each instalment of the College blog. Thank you to all!
So, as we make our way through the spring term, we look forward to celebrating success, achievement, determination and sharing our journey with all members of our Keats family. PER ASPERA AD ASTRA!
Head of Keats College.
We cannot believe that the time has come around again for another edition of the Keats Herald!
As Editor, I would like to say thank you to our amazing team including Alex and Nadia (Senior Editors), Scott (Technical Supervisor and Design), Joseph (Staff liaison) and Callum and Holly (Reporters). We are privileged and proud to have the opportunity to be part of a news team that strives to bring you the best updates and achievements within our amazing College.
This issue will provide a window into College life and celebrate the achievements of Keats students in many different areas. We celebrate all achievements and efforts within our college – trying hard is part of our ethos and so many of our students embody this core value. As we often say in Keats, it’s all about GRIT! and it’s inside each and every one of us.
We hope you enjoy reading about Keats College and get a flavour of who we are and the fantastic things we get up to! Our aim in Keats is to value every member of the College and to support each other as we try our best in all the things we do – lessons, sports, the arts, fundraising, out of school activities and many more! Every single member of Keats College is vital to making up the whole. We are a team and a family every step of the way.
For this edition of The Herald, we have brought together a range of articles about Keats College – our sporting success, our talented students, hobbies and interests outside of school and challenges we set ourselves within it! Our motto is “Per Aspera Ad Astra” or ‘Through Difficulty to the Stars.’ We all understand that nothing is easy and that there will be difficulties along the way in reaching our personal goals, but we all know that our College is there to help us through any “Difficulty” and with the support of staff and college friends we will reach our own personal Stars!
Written by Isla Webster as Editor
Tree-mendous Success in the Cake competition!
Before Christmas Keats student Michael Jennings entered a cake decorating competition, producing an amazing fruit cake decorated as a Christmas tree. His design was unique and festive… so much so that Michael won the overall competition. Here is how he did it!
With the desire and determination to win, Michael went out and bought everything he needed to do just that – to bake a rich delicious fruit cake and decorate with a whole variety of cake materials! He decided to turn his fruit cake into a festive Christmas tree using red icing for the baubles, white icing for the tinsel and yellow icing for the star! In an interview with Michael, he said that his mum helped him decide what type of decoration he should use but also that he liked the idea of a Christmas tree because it was a quite simple design which could be executed to a high standard. With the cake all done and looking like it had been bought out of a shop (or in actual fact better than a commercial cake!), Michael took his masterpiece to food technology to be judged.
Not only are we, as a college, delighted that Michael took this opportunity, but we are thrilled that he won the competition! As a family, we in Keats are delighted to hear about success and so we want to thank Michael for making this happen. In the interview, Michael said that his Mum and Nan were a big inspiration to him and have inspired him to bake. He has completed cake decorating in the past with his Nan and he said that the skills he has learned helped him a lot! Michael thoroughly enjoyed taking part in the competition and would without a doubt do it again! In recognition of Michael’s success, he won a cook book, an icing spreader and last but certainly not least, a big...bold block of icing! As well as this, Michael won points for the college, which has helped us in the race for the Stanley cup at the end of the year! We thank Michael for this and we hope he keeps up his talents in cake decorating, though next time a few slices for the journalists of the Herald would be more than welcome!
By Joseph Morrow. Reporter
I interviewed Mr Davies and Mr Hayes-Sinclair about the work and role of the sports council in school, in the hope that I can provide vital information for anyone who is hoping to join in the future. Firstly, I asked Mr Davies for a short summary of what the sports council job involves and he said the following: “The job of the sports council is to help share the ideas and views of the students in our school. For example come up with new ideas for sports clubs and come up with ideas for sports leader trips. The council is made up of both boys and girls in year 7 to 11 who have a strong interest and commitment to sport”. Secondly, I interviewed Mr Hayes-Sinclair regarding the variety of sports assisted by the sports council and which particular sports he himself is interested in. He explained that the Keats sports council focuses on football for all, rugby (mainly boys) and netball for the girls. We have 2 boys and 2 girls to help pick the teams. Mr Hayes-Sinclair explained that lots of students take part in unusual sports outside of school for example show jumping and bowling, we love the fact that Keats students are willing to try new sports and that some of us enjoy really unusual activities – it is great to try new and exciting things! The Sports Council is a great way of getting to know more about our students and their various different skills in and out of school. We’re always looking for new members in September, so if you think you may be interested, please see Mr Hayes-Sinclair or Mr Davies for more information. Written by
Callum Gallagher-Tate. Reporter
Last year, a number of year 10 students (now year 11) took to the mountains and wilderness of Britain to work towards the completion of their Duke of Edinburgh Bronze award. A lot of these students are pupils in Keats College and here is their experience. For their bronze D of E, the students have to complete 3 different parts before the expedition. They have to do a volunteering section, where they work/help out somewhere, a skills section where they have to experience a new skill ranging from sports clubs to learning musical instruments or even becoming proficient at certain video games and finally there is a physical section, where they have to complete an outdoor activity e.g. Rugby or football etc. The students will have to do two of these sections for 3 months and the final section for 6. Now if you think this was the hard part for our intrepid Keats adventurers... You are not even close! After the pupils had finished all three sections, they had to complete the gruelling expedition! Two days of trekking up, down and around mountains, walking over rocky and wet terrain, climbing over stiles and opening and shutting gates and that's not even including the one long dark night spent in a tent! Determination? Grit? Through difficulty to the stars? Absolutely!
So with all three sections completed, the Keats students had been taught how to map read, complete bearings and pack a bag correctly.... It was time for the ‘biggy’- the Expedition! All students were taken down to Bibby Farm in Chorley one Friday morning. Tents had to be set up in 30 mins. Now this may sound like an easy task, however just imagine a group of tired teenagers out in the cold, damp outside world! We’re certainly not used to it! So 30 mins may have turned into 45 mins but that only meant that we had to walk double time. So with tents up, bags on backs, feet secured, all groups were ready and rearing to go. Compasses at the ready, we divided into groups and we were all away! Mile after mile all groups walked and trudged on. Overall, we covered 6-8 miles each. After a long hard day, we needed to refill our energy bank. Cookers and gas tanks came out ... and so did the pasta…which, inevitably, was gone before you knew it, and after our failed attempt of starting a fire, we all ‘hit the hay’ because we all deserved some well needed sleep.
Finally morning came, all teams were up at 9, tents were down (always easier taking it down) and the final treks were going ahead. With a shorter walk, all teams were back at base after 4 hours and with no shower and worst of all for some... no makeup! All teams were ready to ‘sling’ bags on to the bus and get home to their warm bath and cups of tea! Even though it was hard, we all had an amazing experience and learnt a lot – we were also proud of ourselves for completing the course. Although it was hard work we would recommend our fellow Keats students to try the D of E – it is a brilliant thing to do! Give it a go – you’ve got everything to gain!
Written by Alex Gaughan. Reporter. Senior Prefect for Keats College.
In Keats we have many pupils who volunteer to take part in Stretch and Challenge programmes that are held throughout the year. I interviewed one of our pupils, Tyler Weston (10K2) on his experience of the AGT Stretch and Challenge activities.
Firstly, I asked Tyler - What was the purpose of this challenge?
Tyler explained to me - ‘The purpose of this challenge was to open minds to robotics and experience its technical background. It was a really good opportunity and anyone who gets the chance to do anything like this should give it a go.’
Then I asked Tyler - What did you do?
Tyler told me - ‘In the challenge we figured out how to program robots to do various challenges, as well as repairing them if anything went wrong. We also learnt how to build and make our own robots, which was amazing!’
I went on to ask - What was your favourite part and why?
‘Overall the challenge was really good and fun but if I had to pick out some of my favourite parts, the programming and watching the clips on how to do programming were my favourite as they were fun and interesting. ‘
What was your least favourite part and why?
‘My least favourite parts were when any of the robots broke, or we experienced any technical difficulties with them as it can be annoying when something goes wrong after you work hard on it. But then again, it’s all about trial and error because that’s how we learn.’
My last question for Tyler was - Would you do it again and why?
‘If this opportunity came again I would definitely do it as it was really fun and interesting. I got to work with other people in the school. Also, I learnt how to do so many new things and it was a great experience.’
In Keats College, we hope some more of our amazing pupils can go onto doing activities and challenges like this and continue to make our college proud of their endeavours. Well done Tyler and all who took part. PER ASPERA AD ASTRA!
Written by Holly Hilton. Reporter
The way to India!
One of our prefects, Emma Gill, took on the challenge of raising money to go to India with Girl Guiding North West. Emma found out about this opportunity just under a year ago and had to go through a selection process for all of Girl Guides North West, and she was lucky enough to be chosen. Three trips were on offer; Malawi, Armenia and India, even though you couldn't choose what trip you went on, Emma got her first option, India. During her time in India, Mandore, she will be building benches and desks in local schools, giving the locals in the villages nutritional advice and also advice on how to cook more safely in their homes.
Her original target was to raise £1800, but with all of her hard work and commitment, Emma has managed to raise £2100. To raise the money she ran a bowls tournament, a family quiz night, sold refreshments at careers evening etc. Emma goes on her amazing adventure on the 24th of July 2017 for 17 days. Keats College are so excited for Emma and we wish her the best of luck for such a wonderful and worthwhile activity!
We believe that Emma’s efforts really convey the values and ethos of our college – aiming for a goal, trying really hard to attain it and once you succeed, helping others – a perfect example of Per Aspera Ad Astra!
By Nadia Brady. Reporter. Senior Prefect for Keats College.
SHHH!!!! Sponsored Silence.
At the time of ‘going to press’ we would like to take this opportunity to say a huge thank you to some of our wonderful students in Year 8, who have very kindly agreed to take part in a Sponsored Silence to raise money for our College charity – Love Your Brain. At this time, students are currently gathering sponsors and preparing themselves for complete silence through a school day – no easy feat at all!! We will bring you more news of their endeavours in the next blog, but in the mean time we would like to say a very big THANK YOU and wish them all the best of luck!
PER ASPERA AD ASTRA!