Tuesday, 21 February 2017

Lights, Camera, Connect - From Whitley Academy to Kumamoto, Japan





In April 2016, Kumamoto prefecture, in southern Japan, was shaken by a huge earthquake which destroyed hundreds of houses and displaced thousands of people, many of whom are still living in temporary accommodation 7 months on. 

It was in the wake of this disaster that the British Embassy in Tokyo and RSA Japan Fellows’ Network teamed up to run workshops with 300 high school students in the areas that had been worst affected. 

Within moments, the RSA networking machine was in action and it wasn’t long before I was skyping with Minh Nguyen, a fabulously energetic teacher at Whitley Academy in Coventry.

Read more

Monday, 13 February 2017

Year 11 students participate in science master class




On Friday 10th February, thirty Year 11 students participated in a science master class all day, to prepare for GCSEs in the summer.

Students enjoyed engaging with physics practicals, looking at Hooke's law, terminal velocity, energy transfer, and circuits. They then developed revision materials for chemistry, focusing on electrolysis, bonding and chemical reactions. 

This was followed by a walking talking mock. The students worked extremely hard and we hope they take the opportunity to use the resources at home to revise.

Thursday, 9 February 2017

Year 10 pupils raise £320 for Coventry charity




Many thanks to Janet McConkey of the Coventry Children’s Boot Fund, who came into the Academy today (8th February 2017) to receive a cheque for £320 from our Year 10 pupils.

Janet (pictured here with Bill of 10MPU) said she was ‘thrilled’ that the Year 10 group had made such efforts in their endeavours before Christmas to raise money for the fund. 


The students held a raffle, tombola, washed cars and sold cakes to raise funds for an extremely worthwhile cause. Ms McConkey told the pupils that the Boot Fund had been in existence for 125 years, and that the average support for a family is £35 towards school shoes, so the Year 10s will have provided at least 9 children with essential footwear and relieved the financial pressure for those families.

Wednesday, 1 February 2017

Whitley debating team speaks at Rotary Youth Speaks final





Written by Holly (Year 7) and Ciaran (Year 8) student reporters

On Friday 27th January, a debating team from Whitley Academy  took part in the Rotary Youth Speaks Coventry Intermediate Final, a debating contest for pupils across Coventry.

On the evening of the debate (hosted at Bablake School), four Whitley Academy students prepared to wow the crowd. These student speakers were: Ciaran, Jason, Destiny and Sam. Jason and I (Holly) had another special mission to accomplish: writing the blog about the event.

5:45pm - 


We were greeted by a wet walk in the rain and some issues regarding where exactly the event was on the Bablake site. Eventually we found a very helpful student who helped us locate the theatre.
 

6:25pm - 

We were ushered into the Bablake theatre where the event was being held and told the rules. The three judges introduced themselves including Ms Davidson, Mrs C. Bond, and Mrs Ryan.

President Kennedy began the night off with the most heart-breaking topic of animals in sports, and the topic circulated around human pleasure at the expense of animal pain. The chairperson, Miriam, engaged us with her captivating introduction. It was a very strong team and they used all of their charm to get the audience’s attention to the topic. The speakers did it very well.

Next up it was Whitley Academy; our school! 



 We did extremely well. At the start we were unsure of the proceedings of the debate. Then the whole team quickly grasped the gist of their roles. Ciaran (our speaker) did us proud with his wonderful speech on the topic “The Silent Witnesses”. Sam was very articulate in his role as the chair person. Destiny – as the Proposer of the Vote of Thanks – interacted with the audience by asking them questions based on the stories Ciaran told the audience. It was not an easy topic to talk about. Everyone in the audience listened and gave Destiny very thoughtful answers. We, Holly and Jason, sat and watched waiting to write the blog.

Third up was Heart of England who had the subject of 'fantastic books' and why to read them. Zeeshan did a factual speech and even gave advice about reading to children and adults alike, in the audience.

Then Bishop Ullathorne put to the viewers a more sinister speech, “This House Would Arm The Police”. Joseph was the speaker who arrested our attention with a speech on why the police officers in Great Britain should be armed.

When Coundon Court hit the stage, eyes were fixed on them due to the fact that their speaker Hayarah was going to delve into the world of human rights. What a clever idea! Their topic was very current.

The sixth group to attack the audience with facts and opinions was the hosts, Bablake! Speaker Bhavan took us through a vast subject; “The Problem With Evil”; sadly, her team substantially ran out of time.

Penultimate to the last speech was Barr’s Hill with “America; Powerful Or Not?” The speaker Kajaanan was funny and informative, talking to us about soft power, hard power, cheeseburgers and the one; the only Donald Trump.

Finally Seva school wanted to share with us their thoughts on video games. Birjot ,the speaker, reviewed his personal opinions on games, as "violent and corruptive".

So all in all, not a bad day. We didn’t win but it is the taking part and having fun that counts. Fresh minds and a new experience under our belts, we left Bablake knowing that we had tried our hardest and that our clothes were very, very wet.


We would like to thank the Rotary Club of Coventry for giving us such a great platform to raise our voices on the topics of our concerns and interest.

Monday, 30 January 2017

Post 16 student successful in application to study at Cambridge University





Whitley Academy is very proud to announce that Post 16 student Natalie has been successful in her application to study Mathematics at Robinson College, Cambridge University.

Natalie achieved excellent GCSE results (3As & 7A*s, in 2015) at Whitley Academy, and has continued her success at A-Level, achieving exceptional grades in Maths, Further Maths and Geography. In addition to her independent learning, Natalie gave particular praise for the Post 16 staff and support at Whitley Academy during her university application.

“I applied to Robinson College and should I go, will start in October 2017. During my application process, the former Head of Post-16, Mr Elton, emailed my personal statement to someone who is familiar with Oxbridge applications. I received feedback from this allowing me to make improvements before sending my application off.

Additionally, when I found out I had an interview, a mock interview was set up with a teacher from Ernsford Grange who studied Maths at Cambridge; this was particularly helpful as it made me less nervous for my interviews now I knew what to expect.

I have been at Whitley Academy since Year 7 and decided to carry on Post-16 after my GCSEs. Advice I'd give to Post-16 starters, or those just starting in Year 7, is to not give up because you think something is too hard or unattainable”.


All staff at Whitley will now strive to ensure that Natalie has our full support as she begins preparation for her final examinations.




Wednesday, 25 January 2017

Post 16 students collect ecology samples in North Wales




On Monday 9th January, Whitley Academy Post 16 biology students travelled to Dol-y-Moch, Snowdonia, North Wales, to develop their understanding of practical ecology.  

Ecology is a branch of biology that deals with the relations of organisms to one another and to their physical surroundings.

The aim of the course was to give the students opportunities to apply their learning to three different environments, the rocky shore, sand dunes, and a forest. Students gathered samples in each of these environments, ready for the ecology essential practical required for their exams. 







The students made excellent progress and were very enthusiastic in conditions that made collecting samples challenging. We hope this experience has given them confidence to perform well in their exams.