Weekly Blog

11th September – 15th September

Year 7 Settle In

The new Year 7 pupils at Test Valley have already made a great start to their learning journey, having experienced all of their subjects at least once. They have impressed their teachers with a strong ‘can do’ attitude as well as by being helpful and kind to their new friends and colleagues in lessons. There are many new friendships being forged and new names to learn with pupils arriving from twenty-eight primary schools.

Many of the new pupils have already started their exploration of the extra-curricular activities on offer including music lessons and sports clubs.

A new opportunity this year for our Year 7 pupils is the Historical Modelling Club (Airfix modelling) being run by Mr Murdoch-Smith (Year 7 Coordinator). The first session saw a large turnout of boys and girls who got to work straight away on creating their own models of the iconic Spitfire plane. They were given invaluable assistance by a group of Year 11 pupils who were generous in giving their time and energy to help the new pupils.

Taking Care of Year 7

Year 10 mentors are doing an excellent job working with our Year 7 pupils.  As well as assisting on their first day of school the Year 10 mentors visit the Year 7 tutor groups every Friday morning to play games, talk about school life and support them with any worries they may have. The mentors also spend many of their lunch breaks in the areas where Year 7 pupils meet so there is a friendly face they can approach if they have any queries or concerns.

Special Relationship with Icknield School Continues

This week was the first week that our Year 10 pupils got to meet with pupils from Icknield School.

Mrs Osborne said:

“I was overwhelmed by the amount of support our Year 10 pupils showed with over twenty-five of them giving up their time today to attend.”

This happens on Friday lunchtimes when a group of pupils from Icknield School come to work with a group of our Year 10 and 11 pupils. Icknield School caters for children and young people aged from 3 – 19 years old with severe learning difficulties, including autism and complex needs. Our pupils play a range of games and undertake activities with them such as painting and singing. Working with pupils in mainstream schools of a similar age helps to develop their social and communication skills. The visits also impact on our pupils, helping them to gain in self-confidence and able to help and work with others.

Numeracy Ninjas

The Maths department are excited to announce the introduction of Numeracy Ninjas to Test Valley School. Numeracy Ninjas is a numeracy intervention designed to fill gaps in pupils’ basic mental calculation strategies and also to empower them with the numeracy skills and fluency required to fully access GCSE Maths concepts. Mr Whatley (Head of Mathematics) added:

“Through growth mind-sets and the promotion of regular practice, this is just another example of how we want to ensure pupils’ perception of maths is positive and one in which they take pride and enjoyment.”

Giving to Those Less Fortunate

Charity booksOver the Summer, the Mathematics team at Test Valley School were able to review the resources available for the new academic year. They found many text books that were either outdated or not suitable for the recent changes to the Mathematics curriculum that had been kept over the years. With many of these resources still usable and in good condition it seemed a shame to just send them for recycling.

Fortunately, they were able to contact a charity that collects old school text books and ships them to those less fortunate than ourselves. We are pleased to announce that over 700 maths books are going to Kenya, where Metro World Child have schools and feeding stations for over 3000 children a day. Metro World Child was started by Bill Wilson among the deprived children in New York, where he himself had been abandoned and rescued.

Miss Hiscock (Headteacher) said:

“Test Valley School is such a wonderful community where everyone pulls together and helps each other. It is lovely to be able to ’do our bit’ to help others who may not be as fortunate’.