31/03/21

British Science | Newsletter

This term we celebrated British Science week with a program of assemblies, videos, interviews, challenges, and activities during mid-March.

Thank you to our STEM professionals, parent supporters, industry partners, teaching and support staff, and student interview teams who made these sessions really memorable.

Firstly, we are grateful to have been joined by Helen Sanderson, Engineer for HS2, who shared with us her unconventional route into STEM project management, commitment to Ecological welfare, and passion for lifelong learning for our assembly and live session. Students from across year groups submitted questions for our esteemed guest, and an uplifting interview was led by Zhahla (Y11) and supported by Nimra (Y8) where we learned about ways to get into Engineering, the qualities required to be an effective Project Manager, and the many aspects involved in ‘Enabling Works’, including building new habitats for displaced wildlife. We were enthralled listening to her journey, after initially choosing Nursing as a career option, and gaining her City and Guilds qualification in Electrical Engineering after school.

We were also fortunate to interview David Priestley, who worked in many roles for Rolls Royce aerospace engineering, including Regional Director in the UK and abroad, and now leads the Export Finance Managers and Business Group Operations for UK Export Finance. The interview was expertly conducted by Katy (Y11), and supported by Nimra (Y8). An enthusiastic group of year 7s, led by Anoop, mustered the courage to ask their questions, and we all left the session with inspiration advice, ‘ready to reach for our highest goals’. The students behaved impeccably, asked pertinent well thought out questions, and represented the school wonderfully.

Year 7 took part in a Biomimicry Activity Day, where they learnt about Biomimetic materials, ‘overcame [their] phobias’ and interacted with Domanique’s collection of cool creatures including a bearded dragon, tarantula and a corn snake! Students claim that they loved “when the animals were brought out, especially the rat, as it wasn’t as scary as I thought it would be”, and enjoyed the chance to “pitch our ideas for our company making products inspired by animals!”. They played with Nanotape, took part in Biology-related PE activities, beat a Kahoot quiz, and produced some wonderful designs for technology inspired by nature: there are pictures of some of them below. If you see yours, don’t forget to collect your small prize from Miss Campbell!

Congratulations to the year 12 students who successfully completed their Biology Olympiad, and to students taking part in the ongoing Wind Turbine, Teentech, Leaders Award, Engineering Education Scheme, and Lego Robotics Challenges. A special thanks to Mr McCarthy for supporting students in these endeavours.

There are a number of competitions still running – the Wind Turbine Competition, ‘Interconnectivity’ photography competition, the ‘Innovating for the Future’ poster competition, and STEM Club starts up again for one lucky year group bubble next term. In addition, there are some more spaces for year 10 to do the Junior Physics Challenge. We also have a delayed interview with Dr Farah, a medical doctor who recently earned her PhD in Infectious Diseases. Students have until the second week of the Easter holidays to submit their questions for this exciting medical professional. For more details, students can log into their school account and go to: http://tinyurl.com/kevihsSTEMcomps

Thank you to everyone who has been involved for your support!

Miss Campbell