STEM Family Challenge Event
This week the whole of year 7 and 8 had the opportunity to take part in an exciting STEM Challenge Event. STEM stands for Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics. STEM is important because it pervades every part of our lives. Science is everywhere in the world around us, Technology is continuously expanding into every aspect of our lives, Engineering is the basic designs of roads and bridges, but also tackles the challenges of changing global weather and environmentally-friendly changes to our home and Mathematics is in every occupation, every activity we do in our lives.
The STEM Challenge Event was an exciting way for exposing our students to STEM and giving them opportunities to explore STEM-related concepts which will enable them to develop a passion for it and hopefully pursue a job in a STEM field. The challenges encouraged independent learning and important skills such as working collaboratively and being resilient to overcome failures along the way.
Year 7 students had to design and produce a prototype car, powered by elastic power, which could travel the furthest distance but at the same time being within the design budget.
Year 8 students had to design and create a model roller coaster which would provide the longest rollercoaster experience.
The students worked together in groups of 5 or 6 and competed against all of the other groups in their year group. The winning group all received great prizes- either a blue tooth selfie-stick or a blue tooth mini speaker!
On the evening parents/carers and family members were invited in to take part in the STEM family challenge. There was excellent competition between the families taking part. A big well done to Cameron Sugdon and his family for winning the Family Challenge with their brilliant design. The prize for the winning family was a £20 Amazon Voucher! A big thank you to all of the families who attended for a wonderful evening
This week, some of our Year 9 Science students, had the exciting opportunity to work with Sunderland University, exploring careers in the medical profession. They looked at the various career options available to them within the medical industry: from nursing, midwifery and becoming a paramedic through to studying to be a doctor or surgeon. Students role-played as Doctors and looked at how various patient assessment methods are used by Doctors to assess a patients health. They got to experience bandaging, using a stethoscope to listen to the heart rate, checking for vital reflexes, assembling a model body and exploring the role of our vital organs.
Staff and students at the Durham Federation have been collecting and donating gifts for this years ‘operation Christmas child’ appeal. Well done, all boxes have been sent to a child in need.
Evidence of what year 11s can achieve if they put their minds to it! One student (Luke Patterson) completed one of the most challenging balanced equations I have ever given the class in P7 science today, showing excellent resilience and a good understanding of chemistry. Keep up the amazing work.
Yesterday Durham Federation were honoured to welcome Lady Elsie Robson to open our newly refurbished 3G pitch.
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Some of our students baked cakes to help raise money for BBC’s Children in need. The Cakes will be available for students to purchase on 15/11/2019.
On the 23rd of October our Ushaw Moor site underwent an Ofsted Monitoring visit. The monitoring inspection was carried out under section 8 of the Education Act 2005.
The one day inspection delivered the judgment that;
“Senior leaders and the interim executive board are taking effective action to tackle the areas requiring improvement identified at the last section 5 inspection in order for the school to become good.”
Areas of good progress identified by Ofsted include:
‘Leaders have made good progress in addressing most areas for improvement from the last inspection’.
‘Pupils spoken to during the inspection were unanimous that the quality of teaching is better this year’.
‘Homework is being used effectively across the school to extend pupils’ thinking’.
‘In English, the curriculum is suitably ambitious and well planned. Topics make a strong contribution to building pupils’ cultural awareness. Knowledge is introduced in a well-planned sequence. Curricular goals are ambitious and challenge pupils appropriately. Teachers ask searching questions, and pupils discuss topics with conviction and authority’.
‘Behaviour is now much better than it was. Lessons are purposeful. Pupils conduct themselves well, and most are keen to take part in discussions. Disruption to lessons is now rare’.
‘Leaders have improved attendance. The school uses an effective range of rewards and sanctions’.
‘Leaders’ intentions are clear. They have adapted the curriculum to be more ambitious than it was in the past. They have also reviewed other examination courses and made changes so that there is an appropriate balance of academic and vocational options’.
Durham Federation represented at St John’s Methodist Church in Sacriston to remember 101 years since the end of the First World War.
Our students visited Old Trafford to watch Manchester United play against FK Partizan in a 3-0 win in the Europa League group stage. It was thoroughly enjoyed by all staff and students who even made it on to BBC Sports social media page.
Year 11 revision, play-doh plate boundaries! Great knowledge and understanding shown
A massive thank you for the donations received for @durhamfoodbank
Collectively we donated enough food to provide 59 meals.