Dance club has been a popular choice this term – in the first half of term, students learnt a new dance every week to build up a repertoire of choreography and gain confidence in their abilities. Since half term they have been working on a video for ‘Christmas at Padworth’ which they had great fun doing. They had a lot of input in to the ideas for the video and used their favourite dance moves from the collection they had built up over the course of the term. Click here to watch the video for yourself!
Please click here to read the Principal’s End of Term Newsletter December 2014
AS Level Art students visited the Cartoon Museum and Museum of Brands in London to research information for their graphics coursework. One of the international students said “It was a good experience for me because I enjoyed looking at the cartoons and images”. Students were able to find relevant images for their chosen topics on display in the Museum of Brands – an inspirational day out for all!
The A level Chemistry students visited the BP Castrol Technology Centre in Pangbourne yesterday. They saw how new lubricating oils were developed in the research labs and were introduced to the analytical machines the company uses including scanning electron microscopes and nuclear magnetic resonance machines. The group were given a practical demonstration of how the newly developed oils are tested first on parts of engines and then on the complete engine. The students were particularly interested in finding out how BP works with Formula One teams to troubleshoot any engine-related issues. Many thanks to the staff at BP for a very informative and fascinating insight into the world of Castrol Oil!
Christmas at Padworth kicked off with a collection of festive music, songs, poems and readings presented by the staff and students. Highlights of the evening included Sola, Ella, Lekan and Sultan reading “The Gift” and E1, E2 and Year 10 classes entertaining us with a selection of poems. Ha Jin played Vivaldi’s “Allegro” on her violin and Nguyen played “The Gondoliers Song” on the piano. Talented duo, Sola and Harry sang “Hallelujah” to the delight of the audience. For many though, the high spot of the evening was “My Favourite Things” written and performed by the teaching staff which has been much anticipated and proved to be most enjoyable. During the evening, the Padworth Singers performed “Marys Boy Child”, “And his name shall be called wonderful” and finished off the evening with a spirited rendition of “We wish you a Merry Christmas”. Principal, John Aguilar said, “It has been wonderful to see the College come together this evening and to see so many talented individuals performing such a variety of pieces. Thankyou to everyone who has taken part and made the event such a success.” Click here to see more photos
Stephanie O’Brien, a visiting Manga artist ran a brilliant interactive workshop for students this week. Her colleague Frank Norton-Hill brought along a selection of new manga books and invited students to browse and choose new books for the library stock. One of the students said, “I really enjoyed the manga artists class it was very fun and interactive. I really love manga and it was refreshing to see a manga artist with a different style and system to her stories than usual.” Click here for more pictures
GCSE students visited Fort Nelson, home to the Royal Armouries national collection of artillery near Portsmouth. The students reported, “At Fort Nelson we were greeted with an accessible, extensive programme of things to look, read and learn about. We were provided with a useful back story to the majority of exhibits from our teachers and we also had the opportunity to explore at our own pace. One of the students said that his “favourite part was looking at the wide variety of guns and the tank”. Another student said the “tunnel was long and dark and it was interesting to see how in the Second World War supplies were sent down via a conveyor belt”. The group also visited Portchester Castle where they had a short walk through the castle and round one of the Roman walls.
Over 50 students took part in this term’s Cross Country Run on what turned out to be a beautiful and sunny afternoon. After torrential rain this morning, it was heavy going and rather muddy in places but everyone finished the course on a high. An excellent showing with Alex taking first place in the Boys’ race and Mint first place in the Girls’ race. Many thanks to Mike Powell, Sports Master for organising the event and well done everyone! Click here to see the photos
Year 12 Biology students from Padworth were invited to Reading University to attend a Microscopy Masterclass. This was an exciting opportunity for the students to visit the Electron Microscopy Lab, where they were able to get ‘hands on’ experience of electron microscopy in action, and were given a tour of the Science Departments at the university.
Remembrance Day was marked at Padworth College with a short and thought provoking ceremony led by Principal, John Aguilar. A minute’s silence was observed to mark the eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month in 1918 when the First World War was finally over. All of the students and staff gathered in the Front Hall to listen to a series of readings read by the Student Leaders. The Last Post was played by Chris Randell.
Students enjoyed the festive Halloween Party on Friday night – the Common Room was transformed into a witch’s lair and our talented team of facepainters did a great job on many of the students. Traditional and not at all scary games of pumpkin carving, applebobbing and doughnuts on a string entertained the students before a buffet supper and a disco.
Congratulations to our Year 13 Chemistry Student, Matthew, who was delighted to receive the Award for Best Sixth Form Chemist 2014 at a ceremony held at the University of Reading by the Society of Chemical Industry. Thirty schools from across Berkshire and Buckinghamshire and Surrey and East Sussex took part in the event, selecting one candidate each for the Best Sixth Form Chemist award. This event was a unique opportunity to reward excellent young chemists, but also to encourage them to take up a career in science.
Padworth students studying English literature and language GCSE and A level went to see Journey’s End by R. C. Sheriff at the Watermill Theatre which proved a poignant and thought provoking production set in a dug-out on the front line during the First World War. One of the students commented that “ the play was wonderful and very enjoyable and it helped me to get a better understanding of the drama section in my English course. Another student commented that, “the play was old fashioned but showed what life was really like in the trenches.”
Staff and students set off for PGL Liddington, a residential adventure centre in Wiltshire on Friday for an action-packed weekend for every student in the school, both day and boarding. The main aims of the weekend were to help all the students, old and new to get to know each other at the beginning of the new academic year and to develop teamwork and leadership skills. During the days, the students enjoyed plenty of exciting activities including raftbuilding, abseiling, archery, climbing and the zipwire. The full evening programme of wide games, sports and a campfire kept everyone engaged and interacting well into the evening. Pablo, a Year 11 student said, “It was so fun because we did lots of activities and my favourites were the rock climbing and the raftbuilding”; Another Year 11 student, Susan commented, “Although it was really tiring, I made lots of friends and had fun!” Many thanks to all the Padworth staff who accompanied the students and to the PGL staff for making the weekend such a great success! Click here to see more photos
To welcome all our students, new and old, the College hosted a BBQ on Friday evening – great fun was had on the bouncy castle and bucking bronco and later the students enjoyed the disco and karaoke party into the evening. A good time was had by all and it was a great way for new students to get to know everyone. Click here to see the photos
In his beginning of term newsletter, John Aguilar, Principal welcomes new and returning students and staff as well as giving an update on what’s been happening over the Summer. Click here to read his newsletter in full.
Carol Donner, Biology teacher at Padworth, met the scientist and broadcaster Professor Brian Cox at a gathering of science professionals in London. As a VIP guest Carol was invited to ask a question of the Professor in the public forum, which was a great honour. Professor Cox is famous for his TV series ‘Wonders of the Universe’, ‘Wonders of the Solar System’ and ‘Wonders of Life’. He is back on our TV screens soon with ‘The Human Universe’.
Students at Padworth College are to be congratulated on their good GCSE results with 72% of all entries achieving A* – C grades and nearly half the grades awarded (49%) achieving A*-B. The overall pass rate was 97%. Students of particular note were Shivam Patel, Amartya Vadlamani and Molly Brown who between them gained an impressive 19 A* and A grades. John Aguilar, Principal said, “We are proud of what our students have achieved – as a non-selective school, we are committed to enabling each individual student to fulfil their academic goals and we are delighted to see an improvement on last year’s results, not least with the increase in the number of top grades at A*/A this year to 27%.”
In this year’s A level results for the Sixth form students, 41% of exam entries were awarded A*/A/B grades; 64% of exam entries were awarded A* – C grades with an 88% pass rate. Of particular note were Ali Haji from Bahrain who achieved 3 A grades and will be taking up his place to study Accounting and Finance at the London School of Economics, Nam Wong from Hong Kong with 2 A* grades and a B who will be going to study Accounting at Bath University and Mandy Lam who, with A*, A and 2 B grades, has been successful in obtaining a place at Bath University to study Pharmacology. The University Access Foundation in Business students have also been successful in gaining places at Royal Holloway, Aston and Oxford Brookes. Principal, John Aguilar said, “We are proud of all of our students and their achievements this year. My thanks go to all of our teaching staff and in particular our Higher Education Advisor who has worked hard to ensure that all of our students go on to the universities of their choice. At Padworth, we endeavour to work very closely with students to achieve their individual academic goals and I should like to congratulate all of the students and wish them well in the next stage of their education.”
A group of students visited the Faculty of Physical Sciences and Engineering at Southampton University. They took part in an electronics workshop producing LED devices which when moved quickly displayed words. They had a guided tour of the faculty including an electronic rhino designed by undergraduates which responds to various stimuli and the “clean rooms” in which high level silicon chip and optic fibre research takes place. Over lunchtime, there was a tour of the university, including an immensely popular visit to the Bubble Tea bar. Afterwards, the students heard an inspiring talk from Shirin Dehghan, Founder and CEO of the telecommunications company, Arieso on the topics of Women in Engineering and Entrepreneurship. Shirin has won several awards in recent years for her work as a leading woman entrepreneur in the technology industry.
The Summer Art Exhibition gave staff and students a wonderful opportunity to view the A Level art students’ exam pieces presented in the Art Room – and it was a treat indeed! Our talented students who are taking A levels in Fine Art, Graphic Design and Textiles worked very hard to produce a very fine display which everyone enjoyed. A delicious Strawberry Cream Tea was served on the lawns outside which was also very popular! Please click here to see pictures of the Art Exhibition
Inter House matches in basketball and football as well as a staff v students netball match took place this week. Blessed with sunshine, the basketball match between Fison and Granary was end to end and the score close for much of the match – as the Fison players tired, Granary took advantage to take control and win the game. The final score was Granary 32 – Fison 20. Well played all the players and thank you to everyone who came and watched. The second event was the students v staff netball match. The rest of the school came out to witness a great tempo game of netball. The staff had a couple of bandits in their team which added more pressure on the student team but they made a great start leading 4 – 1 but as staff stepped up their level of play, the final score was 13 – 11 to the staff. All the players played their best especially Jenny Sam and Stefi Jenkins who were nominated best team players. Thank you to all who participated and to those who came to support. And finally, the football match between Fison and Granary House. The tension had been building up between the two houses all week as house honour was at stake! It was incredible to see the energy and determination from both teams and the excellent support everyone was giving to their teammates in any situation. The score was close at half time (2-2) but at the end Fison started to create mistakes and Granary were on the counter attack. Final score 4 – 2 to Granary House. A fantastic effort from all the players and yet another great turnout of the student community to watch. Please click here to see the photos from all three matches