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Monday, 30 June 2014
This academic year, the Boys’ Division has certainly made the most of its latest initiative: the SPACE Programme. Every fortnight on a Monday afternoon, the school has been taken off the usual timetable, allowing staff and boys to be timetabled to a whole range of different activities.
In this last session of the year, the Year 10 boys were given a particular treat: a carousel of activities around the school around the theme of music and dance.
In the Sports Hall, the boys were put through their paces by a professional Zumba instructor! The heavy beat of the music and the instructor’s encouragement kept the boys on their feet and moving for the full twenty minute session. It was clear that they thoroughly enjoyed this high-energy activity.
Miss Lord gave the boys a short class that was designed to be an intermediary between music and dance in the McKellen Studio Theatre. The boys put together a series of movements set to music, with the idea being that when they performed the movements to one piece the outcome would seem antagonistic; but when the same set of ten moves were performed to a second piece, the mood would change and become reconciliatory. This really got the boys thinking about how they could alter their movements to reflect or change their tone. It made for a really interesting session, which allowed the boys to be creative and also have fun.
Finally, in the Boys’ Division Great Hall, the Year 10 boys were treated to a short concert performed by the peripatetic music staff and members of the Boys’ and Girls’ Division Music Departments. Each performer put their piece of music into context and spoke briefly about their specific instrument before giving a short rendition. There was a wide variety of styles and the aim was to give the boys a taste of a different kind of music to what they would usually choose. The boys were very appreciative of each piece and all of the groups enjoyed the relaxing aspect of simply listening to and enjoying the concert.
The Year 7 boys were also given an action-packed final SPACE session: each form was sorted into teams, and these teams were then pitted against one another in a Fairtrade Football Tournament!
Earlier in the year, the boys were given an assembly on Fairtrade products and the importance of Fairtrade. They also took part in voting a couple of Fairtrade products into the school dining room, with the hope being that the school will eventually become completely Fairtrade. The football tournament built on these foundations: all of the balls used throughout the afternoon were Fairtrade – with the boys commenting on their high quality! Throughout the afternoon, when not playing games, the teams completed quizzes to win a prize of Fairtrade chocolate.
The SPACE Programme has truly offered the boys a vast variety of new experiences. It has allowed them to set aside time for fundraising efforts, including a Fun Run for Guide Dogs UK. Year 10 in particularly have been able to offer their assistance on a voluntary basis to Pocket Nook, a local residential care home for young people on the autistic spectrum. They have also lent a hand with maintaining the Darcy Lever Gravel Pits alongside the Gravel Pits Action Group; and they have helped with building paths, painting fences and many other tasks at The Hive at Moss Bank Park. They have also been offered a Dance Masterclass, led by choreographer and dancer Luke Saville.
These activities and more throughout the year have given the boys opportunities to develop outside of the classroom and normal curriculum, and have been a great benefit to their personal growth.
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