I like to share our theme of the week in the Head’s Blog to allow families to continue to talk about the topic at home.
This week’s house assemblies included an introduction from Mr Huq, Head of Houses, followed by individual house presentations.
The presentations included news about the charities each house is supporting, International Women’s Day and Red Nose Day.
Plymouth City College Young Chef Competition
Many thanks to Caleb Caleshu 9P for writing this report about the Young Chef Competition and very well done to the team.
After winning the school round against others in our year group, we got the fantastic opportunity to go and compete in the Plymouth City College Young Chef Competition. In our group was Flynn Abbott 9C, Harry Marks 9P and myself.
We had two hours to complete a three course meal. We had to make two servings for each course, one for presentation and one for the judges to eat.
For the starter, we had to make a dish including mackerel. For the main, we had to use chicken breasts and for the dessert we had to use rhubarb. Our menu consisted of Korean grilled mackerel served on a bed of salad for the starter, chicken breast with a sticky Asian sauce, served on a bed of rice for the main and deconstructed pear and rhubarb crumble, served with warm vanilla custard for the dessert.
After being brought to our kitchen, unpacking our ingredients and receiving a safety talk, we began cooking. It was a fun and exciting experience and after two hours, we had completed all of our dishes.
In the end, the competition was very tough and DHSG won. However, I was still very happy with our performance and the meals that we produced. We received very high praise for our main meal from one of the judges, who was a Plymouth Albion player. I would like to thank Miss Hunns and Miss Dean for taking us to City College and for such a wonderful experience.
Caleb Caleshu 9P
Our examples of excellent work this week are from 7E.
Mrs Delve said, “We have been studying nature poetry and exploring the poetic methods used by the writers. The boys have considered the effect of the poet's choices and appreciating the various voices created. They were asked to write their own animal poems for homework and these are some that the whole class considered the best”.
The dolphin on my private beach
He has been here for 6 years on my private beach,
enjoying himself, as if it is his.
All he does is wait in the shallow end,
as if expecting something to come.
Surrounded by pristine waters,
and cowers in the night,
only to come back again, once it is light.
He is sure to remain covered and aware,
as if a possible predator would attack him there.
This is the dolphin on my private beach
The Tiger Shark
I saw it, and It saw me.
Gliding through the shallow reefs.
It's given me a kingly stare.
Swimming through back and forth.
Sniffing and bumping odd bits of shell.
While Around him, the shallow blue bubbles.
To the evil hunters. He is lucky.
To be swimming where he glides, unknowing of the dangers.
He’s fortunate he’s not one of the prey.
Living in the shallow turquoise of the sea.
This Season, when the sun bolts, proud with sunlight.
He’ll fly across the gib of the sea, wanting no more than simple custody of the beach, on which he claims with his unrevealed emotions.
World Book Day
World Book Day is an annual event, held on the first Thursday of March, which celebrates the importance of reading and books. This year was a special celebration for the 25th anniversary of World Book Day. Reading is a core skill for life and there is much research around the importance of reading in supporting students’ academic achievements and personal wellbeing. We tend to take reading for granted as we are fortunate enough to be surrounded by books and there are so many distractions for our time. The theme for 2022 was ‘I am a reader’ and this is a useful reminder of the importance of reading.
At DHSB we joined the international celebrations with bunting, displays, special lessons and a range of competitions, all encouraging students to read. Staff also shared details of their favourite book to encourage students to read. It is so powerful for our boys to see that reading is a habit that many people enjoy. I had the privilege of teaching 8N on World Book Day and seeing their excitement at the book recommendation of their tutor, Mr Spencer. He shared that Kipling’s ‘The Jungle Book’ was his favourite novel.
Students were challenged to match the teacher to the bookcase in a ‘Shelfie Competition’ which proved far harder than many imagined. It was apparent that teachers’ bookcases were an eclectic mix of books gathered over many years and students needed to look closely to spot the clues on each bookcase. Over ninety students entered the competition with four Year 10 students tying score to win the competition.
Congratulations to the following students:-
Lucas McBride 10W
Orlan Hartley 10N
George Poppe 10P
Zeb Fellows 10W
Students still had time this week to enter the Flash Fiction and the Create a Book Cover competitions. Our plan is to create an online library of entries to showcase our students’ creativity. Winning entries will also be shared in school and in DHSB’s paper ‘Spectator’.
Finally, the English and Media department are busy planning our first Book Festival which we are hoping to stage in July. Details will follow soon.
Ten Tors Training
This week saw our three teams return to Postbridge and into the northern quarter of the moors to revisit the training route that recently ended prematurely owing to Storm Eunice. Weather conditions were Baltic but with views and vistas as far as you cared to gaze.
Teams managed themselves for much of the day with the ever present training team watching and observing from a distance on ridge lines.
There were navigational errors but this is why we train and practice to hone the skills leant and understand why the errors occurred in the first place. Learning and understanding why things don’t always go to plan make us more determined and better leaders in the long run.
There were also some great examples of route selection and across all of our teams and the pace throughout the day was true to their respective route cards.
Somewhere on Kestor Rock is Ms Davidson and some delicious cakes
Teams head for home as they perambulate Sittaford Tor
This week is National Careers Week so several of the lessons focus on the future, beginning with Year 7 students who are starting to research one of their future options, an apprenticeship. They may choose to apply for an apprenticeship to start after their GCSEs or A levels, and a degree apprenticeship is a choice that is definitely growing in popularity as an alternative to going to university.
They will be researching this option over a couple of weeks, and then return to this route over their time at DHSB, as well, of course, as learning about more traditional academic routes.
Year 8 students were researching the world of online adverts; amongst other things they learned how to switch off related pop-up internet advertisements, and how to spot an advert within other content.
Year 9 students explored social skills. Although not perhaps a career skill at first glance, learning how to deal with different and potentially difficult situations could be extremely useful from an employability perspective. They finished by asking ‘Is it possible to be truthful and tactful?’ What do you think?
And so to the major activity of National Careers Week for Year 10, 11 and Sixth Form students.
This morning we welcomed over twenty visitors in fourteen different career areas, and Year 10 and 11 students selected which talk to attend. We have not been able to run this activity for two years for obvious reasons, so it was particularly good to see so many faces in real life!
A few were familiar either because they had supported us previously or because they had been pupils in the not-so-distant-past. Having an alumnus say “I was sat where you are now” is an extremely powerful message for our current students, and both these and our several new faces gave inspirational and aspirational presentations to the boys.
Two fairly recent alumni, Nathan Vosper (an engineer at Babcock) and Harry Samuels (a London barrister) kindly agreed to stay and talk to Sixth Form as well, and Iain Ramsay, another Old Boy from the Bank of England, went on to lead Sixth Form classes in Economics for not only DHSB but also PHSG and DHSG. A small group from the University of Swansea speaking on Materials Engineering also stayed for the day and took Chemistry and Physics Sixth Form lessons as well as giving their original careers presentation.
So #NCW2022 draws to a close and has hopefully sparked some ambitions in a variety of subjects. Staff have also been talking about careers in their subject lessons this week, and wherever possible giving real world applications for knowledge and skills taught in each lesson.
Our next big event will be right at the end of this term when I invite recent alumni back into school to talk briefly about their progress since leaving DHSB. What subject they chose at university and which university they chose to apply to; why they started an apprenticeship, and any other information, guidance and advice.
If you are reading this and think you could contribute, please email me email@example.com
Letters to students and parents about National Careers Week
To coincide with National Careers Week 2022, Michelle Donelan, Minister of State for Further and Higher Education, is writing to students and parents about the education, training and work choices available to young people after they finish their GCSEs and once they turn 18.
You can read her letters at these links
Very unusually this week there is just one fixture result to report.
Unfortunately the 1st XI lost their match against the Plymouth University team on Wednesday.