As I mentioned on Tuesday, Year 9 is such an important year in terms of choices and the students have seriously considered their options for GCSE. It has been a discussion point in many Guidance sessions and I am impressed with the mature approach the students have adopted. We are currently just finalizing all options for next year and confirmation of this will be with you soon.
Once again, a well done to all of the students on their hard work. I am certainly very proud of them all and what they have achieved.
Rahul – Chess Champion
Rahul has just competed in the Thailand Open Chess Championships in Bangkok where he jumped 58 points in the world rankings.
Fourteen-year-old Rahul was introduced to chess at the age of four by his chess-loving dad, and was immediately hooked. He joined the ranks of the professional players at 8 and has risen gradually since then. Representing his home country of India in the Bangkok tournament, Rahul played against seven nationalities and scored 4.5 points from a possible 9 points, with 3 wins, 3 draws and 3 losses. Notably, he had one win against a higher-rated Scottish player and drew with three higher-rated players from Germany, India and Thailand. It was these performances that pushed up his rating and gave him the extra experience to improve his own game.
He says, “At first I was nervous but, after the first three games, I got very excited that I would increase my rating. When I lose a game, I can learn from my mistakes; like maybe I made a mistake in the opening, so in the next game I can change it.”
Getting to this level of chess takes dedication and Rahul practises for between 18 and 20 hours each week and has a chess coach. He has competed in tournaments in Hong Kong, India and Greece, but the championships in Thailand was his first Grand Master tournament. Playing at that level also gave him the opportunity to meet some of the stars of the chess world, including Nigel Short, a Grand Master from England who was placed number two in the tournament. It has also inspired him to set a personal goal. He explains, “I want to become a Grand Master before I turn 18.”
A view from the classroom
In Music, Year 9 have been studying Film Music, specifically focusing on the art of original film scoring and composing music to accompany specific images, moods and actions. As part of the Juilliard programme, Year 9 have been using Garageband to compose their own music to fit a particular film clip, exploring sound effects as well as original composition and character themes.
This week the focus for Year 9 has been Electricity. The students have had a practical lesson investigating series and parallel circuits. It has been a lot of fun doing the 1980s dance ‘The conga’ as we learnt about voltage, current and resistance. The students certainly enjoyed watching Mr Howell doing the Yorkshire version of the dance!!
The girls have been working on building up endurance in their swimming, counting strokes and swimming for long distances. They have also been developing their basketball skills as we have just entered Basketball CISSA season. The turnout of Year 9 girls has been fantastic with almost 90% of the year group joining a basketball team! The boys have moved on to summer games and are enjoying developing their skills in striking and fielding activities.
Year 9 Beginner level students will continue to learn more vocabulary for transportation and sentence patterns to express their daily life.
Clarissa Lum For English
In English, we have been studying the book 'Of Mice and Men'. The book is about two migrant workers trying to find a job. It is set in the 1930s during the Great Depression. We have been reading the book and discussing the content in lesson.
Katy Sapsford for German
This week in German, we have been finishing our topic on environment. We have been learning about the superlatives and comparatives (the imperfect and perfect tenses) in German. This week we are starting our poster which will be our assessment. In this topic we have been talking about the environment in the places we used to live in and where we live now. We have been talking about what we used to do for the environment, what we do now and what we will be doing in the future.
Dates for the Diary
Thurs 28 April Sports Awards Evening (Years 9 – 13), 6 – 8pm
Thurs 12 May Stage and Screen Evening
Mon 23 May End-of-year assessments for Years 7, 8, 9, 10, 12 (until 3 June)
Sat 4 June Summer Fun Day