This month has seen Ribston has come alive with the good weather which has enabled us to get outside more and take part in events that we have been waiting to offer these last few months. The Bronze Duke of Edinburgh has gone ahead, students are out on the fields with students getting the opportunity to try new sports with our coaches back to support them, and Year 7 have been out and about on the water making memories.
What I love about our students is that what they do to extend themselves is never stops confined to within the school grounds! Opportunities are grasped and students push themselves out of their comfort zones regularly because of their high aspirations to better themselves personally. You can see from this month's Ribston Roar that their own achievements. I say it regularly, but I couldn't be more proud of the students here; the pandemic isn't holding them back, it is making them more determined to succeed in what they do and in many cases, their actions benefit others too.
This newsletter continues to celebrate each student's uniqueness and individuality. Next month those talents will be showcased in our summer concert and the G15 celebration which we will share with the whole community.
Developing our cricket skills with Gloucestershire Cricket Club
The PE department is very fortunate to welcome a Gloucestershire Cricket Coach, Craig Hayward, to Ribston every Tuesday this term. He has been busy coaching a variety of age groups during their PE lessons as well as providing an opportunity for Year 9 students to attend an extra-curricular Cricket Club. We are hoping these newly acquired or refined skills will impact positively when they are applied during Cricket fixtures this term and in the future.
High demand for places on football skills training sessions
Ciaran Bromley (Women's Football Development Officer at Hartpury University and College) has continued to provide opportunities to participate in extra-curricular football during the summer term. This has been extremely well attended by Year 7 and Year 8, with several students adding their names to the waiting list. This opportunity is more valuable than ever after lockdown, where students have missed out on training and fixtures both in school and in club settings.
Primary School musical workshops drummed up lots of enthusiasm
Primary Partnership activities have begun again after what feels like a lifetime. It was wonderful to welcome the first of eight Primary Schools to Ribston Hall on Monday 14th June for a Djembe Drum Workshop. The programme is designed to provide Year 3 and 4 pupils from our feeder Primary Schools with an opportunity to experience music that they might not have access to in their Primary schools and to visit the Ribston Hall music block. The workshop has been very well-received with schools requesting more workshops in the future.
Thanks go to Dr Yang who is giving up her time to lead the workshops.
Year 7 had a very bright day for some water-based fun at Croft Farm
Mrs Hay was delighted to be able to take Year 7 on a day trip to Croft Farm Water Park in Tewksbury, on 16th June. The students enjoyed a beautiful sunshine-filled day of water based activities. They experienced activities including: Kayaking, Sailing, Canoeing and Stand-Up Paddle Boarding (SUP).
The students showed how they have developed their leadership skills, confidence and team work throughout the past year, all with a huge smile on their faces. This was a fantastic way to finish the year and celebrate the resilience and determination that has been shown by all.
Year 8 rise to the Cyber Escape Room challenge
Amy Blanch, Harriet Siddons, Delilah Fernandes and Rachel Treadwell from Year 8 went to Cheltenham to take part in a Cyber Escape challenge hosted by CGI.
After locking the girls inside a large metal box, there was nothing to do but wait and hope they could find a way out. Fifty minutes later, the girls emerged having cracked all the problems in one of the fastest times recorded and they were highly praised by the organisers for their confident approach to problem-solving. Well done to all four of them!
CGI are hoping to bring the challenge to Gloucester next year so that more of our students can participate in the activity.
Mrs Coverdale is spreading her computer knowledge nationally
Mrs Coverdale is teaching all over the country now, delivering online lessons for the National Centre for Computing Education.
Mrs Coverdale completed her CS Accelerator last summer and is now teaching the topic of 'The Internet and Cybersecurity'.
Year 9 battled soaring temperatures on their Duke of Edinburgh expedition
Matilda Honeywill and Alice Holder told us their views on the weekend:
"Two weeks ago, many students in year 9 completed their Bronze DofE award, which is an exciting opportunity to develop team building and map reading skills over a challenging weekend.
On day one of the expedition, we all set off with heavy backpacks, a great deal of sun cream and lots of optimism. This optimism slowly turned into concentrating on the exceptionally hot weather, blisters, and hunger. However, by working as a team, after several hours we managed to navigate our way to the campsite.
In the evening, setting up our tents proved to be quite a challenge as we were all exhausted, but after not too long all the tents were up and we started to concentrate on relaxing and enjoying the experience.
We had fun making food and enjoying each other’s company before climbing into our sleeping bags.
Naturally only a few people got enough sleep, so there were many tired faces the next morning. Still, we persevered and headed off towards home.
Day two was even hotter, harder, and more straining, and the lack of sleep and aching legs started to affect our pace. Many groups got lost, but thanks to our determination we navigated our way back to the end point and all got home safely.
We all enjoyed the experience and were thankful to the school and the DofE team for giving us this opportunity."
Golfing marathon raises over £2000 for Pied Piper Appeal
Molly Douglas in Year 9 took part in a golfing marathon on 22nd June, covering 72 holes of golf, starting at 5am, to raise funds for the Pied Piper Appeal. The funds will go towards renovating the children's play area at Gloucestershire Royal Hospital.
As junior captain at Brickhampton Golf Club, Molly partnered with various players throughout the day, including Charlie Sharples, Gloucester Rugby legend, who is a patron of the Pied Piper Appeal. She had a team of supporters cheering her on for the day, including family and friends.
In support of Molly's efforts, we held a non-uniform day in school on 25th June with all contributions going towards Molly's Just Giving page. If you haven't yet done so and would like to make a contribution, please send it via Parent Pay for non-school uniform day and we will make one payment to Molly's collection.
Books for Gaza
Year 12 student, Myiesha Mulla, co-ordinated a collection for 'Books for Gaza' to replenish a bookshop in Gaza which had been obliterated by an air strike. The bookshop acted as a library for the local university and for children across the city.
Myiesha collected thousands of books, filling her family home with many boxes! She is pictured here with Ms Haines, our school librarian, who helped to publicise the efforts within Ribston Hall.
Well done Myiesha!
Outstanding efforts shown with 'Out of the Darkness' poetry
The Performing Arts department asked students to write a poem to capture recent lockdown experiences using the theme 'Out of the Darkness'. We selected a winner to be read during a performance for the G15 partnership event, which was written by Cerys Nicholas in Year 10. Two runner-up poems were also selected, written by Precious Komolafe in Year 9 and Sanju Sreeram in Year 8.
Sunrise - Cerys Nicholas
Before the sunrise there is dark.
Cold and bleak. Alone we stand
Minds enwrapped, enveloped with fear.
Before the hope, before the sun.
As the great flare rises, we join hands,
And as it appears over the
Great wall of green, we smile,
For we are together as one
And we survived the dark.
Although we still face uncertainty,
We are not alone, for we have each other.
We are able to bask in those beautiful rays,
As we know that there is hope.
Hope for us all.
The years will pass by and darkness may return,
But we will be ready. We will be prepared.
The world may never be the same and we may need to fight.
But the sunlight will always return.
Dancing all the way to gold
Amber-Rose, one of our talented Year 7 students, danced her way to gold at the Cheltenham Festival of Performing Arts over half-term.
Dancing with Linda Virgoe Dance Studios on a regular basis, she performed at Pitville Pump Rooms for the festival, achieving 4th place in Age 11 Lyrical and 1st place in Age 11 Classical Ballet.
Well done Amber-Rose, what an achievement!
The strongest girls in school?
Imogen Mansell in 7.2 has told us about her sporting passion.
"I do a very unusual sport with Lily Osment in Year 8. We are weightlifters!
I go to training every Tuesday and Thursday doing different lifts such as clean and jerks, snatch, back squat, front squat and deadlifts. My coach is called Andrea Peck and she won a bronze medal in the Europeans. She is super supportive and is always cheering her students on.
The weights I can lift so far-Clean and jerk: 37kg, Snatches: 25kg, Back squats: 57kg, Front squat: 43kg, Deadlifts: 80kg
We are working towards a very important competition called ‘British Weightlifting’. We will be competing towards the end of June and start of July. It is a really fun and active sport that will let you talk to your friends and celebrate getting a new or heavier lift. It’s not boring because you’re always on your toes (literally). I always look forward to going so I can catch up with my friends but at the same time I enjoy lifting. When I step onto the platform, I know that I need to work hard to receive the result I want."
Year 12 students shine at the Biology Intermediate Olympiad
8873 students from 449 schools around the world took part in the Biology Intermediate Olympiad and several of our students were recognised and achieved certificates.
This competition is a challenging one, designed to target A-level standard understanding of non-familiar concepts, where students are expected to apply what they have learned this year to answer the questions.
Judging by the boundaries to achieve the certificates, students did exceptionally well to gain recognition.
The following students achieved a certificate:
Kara Dionisio - Silver certificate (top 10% of participating students)
Gracie Bosley - Bronze certificate
Laiba Malik - Bronze certificate
Jessie Irvine - Bronze certificate
Evelyn De Gruyther - Bronze certificate
Emily Birt - Highly Commended
Deborah Otieno - Highly Commended
Olivia Rajesh - Highly Commended
Eleanor Hackforth-Walker - Highly Commended
Well done to all the students for taking part and a special congratulation for all students who achieved a certificate.
G15 partnership concert goes virtual this year
Sadly we weren't able to hold our annual concert with fellow G15 partnership schools for a united performance this year; instead, we recorded our contribution remotely. The Music Works are compiling all school performances to share with us during a live broadcast on 12th July.
We submitted a video featuring original music, poetry and dance for inclusion and are thankful to all the talented students who participated in the writing, choreography, performance and filming of this piece, specifically to the incredibly talented Bella Markham in Year 8 who wrote and choreographed the music. Many thanks also go to Dr Yang for managing the entire process. We have some incredibly gifted students in performing arts and look forward to sharing our finished piece with you all.
We have quite a good stock of pre-owned, good quality uniform for sale. This is very reasonably priced and helps to raise funds for school.
Please see Mrs Stoner in the Food room before school or at lunchtime. If you have any unwanted uniform to donate, please bring it to the Food room.
Activate alerts to help reduce Covid transmission
We are seeing the nationwide increase in cases reflected within our school community, with a few cases being identified in late June. We encourage all students and staff to conduct regular testing, reporting results to both the school and to the government website, in order to identify asymptomatic cases and reduce transmission of the virus between students and staff.
Unfortunately this does mean some minor disruption to the usual format of learning, with some students having to work from home during periods of self-isolation should they have been identified as a contact or positive case. We are doing all we can to support all students and ask for your patience during these tricky times for all of us.
We issue alerts for parents of those students identified as a contact via MyEd app so please ensure this is downloaded on your phone and alerts are active. Should you not have this app, a text message is sent to all primary parent or carer contacts.
National Growing For Wellbeing Week
The positive effect gardening can have on us, both mentally and physically, forms this term's theme for Wellbeing.
Our Wellbeing board has tips for how to grow easy vegetables like radishes, Miners’ lettuce and courgettes. There is also a competition to produce the most creative planter, and this is open for staff and students.
Wellbeing have given Key Stage 3 students the opportunity to grow sunflower seeds and at the end of term we will see which tutor group has been able to grow the tallest sunflower.
We are leaving an area of school grounds to grow wild in order to increase the biodiversity within school. We hope to cut a pathway through the long grass and wildflowers so that the students can enjoy and experience the wellbeing that comes with spending a few moments in nature.
Enjoy the sunshine and happy planting!
Our Year 11 and 13 students finished at the end of May and we had hoped to celebrate their achievements with a number of planned events this term. Sadly, we are now unable to hold our leavers' events this summer as planned, due to the current Covid guidelines. We realise this is a huge disappointment, particularly after such a tricky GCSE and A-level journey for our students.
We intend to move our Year 13 cathedral service to January when hopefully most students will still be able to attend and potentially more parents too. This still falls within our centenary year and will allow us to celebrate this very special time for Ribston Hall with our recent leavers.
We will keep you informed of plans to celebrate the commitment and resilience of our students in this very tricky year.