In Art lessons on Google Classroom, Year 7 pupils have explored creating distinctive ‘zentangle’ style drawings inspired by the marine environment. Having initially focused on their selected sea creature, they proceeded to develop the background with a range of suitable patterns. Upon the completion of this project, Year 7s went on to look at mythical creatures in stories and legends, producing observational drawings and creating their own imaginative creature.
Year 8 have engaged successfully with exploring photography and digital drawing. They took their own photographs, then created a range of colourful, digital portraits inspired by the Expressionist art movement.
Year 9 pupils have continued to engage with the theme of Pop Art and Food. They have explored food photography and created colourful, digital food paintings inspired by Pop Artists and their own photography work.
Year 10 have thoroughly explored the theme of Natural Forms through engaging with a broad range of resources and materials. They have investigated a selection of artists and designers, responding visually in a variety of media including drawing, photography and digital painting. They have now started to explore the topic of ‘Manmade and Mechanical Structures’.
Pupils have been exploring ‘Theme 1 - Introduction to Business’ and have been completing a broad range of interesting topics such as types of costs, profits, recruitment and remote working which is especially relevant now!
Pupils have had the opportunity to use what they have learnt to research how the current pandemic will now impact on the immediate and future economic climate. This has provided pupils with a greater understanding of how the course is relevant to their everyday lives.
Year 10 pupils have now completed Theme 1 and have now been introduced to ‘Theme 2 - How to build a business’. Pupils have also been completing exam style questions with model answers to continue to hone their exam skills.
Year 7 have studied a range of activities in their online lessons, looking at both the theory and practical elements of Dance. Students have had an opportunity to research professional works, create fact pages and knowledge organisers based on their prior understanding of schemes of work and have been able to learn two brand new choreographies - ‘Prince Ali’ from Aladdin The Musical and ‘We’re All In This Together’ from High School Musical.
Year 8 have studied a range of activities, looking at both the theory and practical elements of Dance. Students have had an opportunity to complete tasks that focus on researching, analysing and creating reviews on professional works. Students have also been able to learn two brand new choreographies - ‘Prince Ali’ from Aladdin The Musical and ‘We’re All In This Together’ from High School Musical.
Year 9 had a theory focus, looking at a range of tasks, focusing on dance safety, dance key terms and glossary, reviewing and debating topics within the dance community and researching five different dance companies, Rambert, World Dance Theatre, James Cousins Company, English National Ballet and Boy Blue Entertainment.
Year 10 have continued their dance studies, focusing mostly on the theory elements as well as their practical units. Students have learnt new key terms including structure, style fusion, performance environment and have increased their knowledge and understanding of Section C and Section A of the written paper. Students have enjoyed researching styles from around the world during their practical dance project, as well as rehearsing set phrases and duo/trio performances.
Year 11 focused on the dance appreciation aspect of the GCSE Dance course, looking at completing their 80 question revision tasks, as well as observing and analysing the anthologies that have been studied, reflecting on and analysing production aspects
During online lessons Year 7 have been growing their baseline knowledge for all types of materials they will continue to use in the workshop, understanding the many categories and alternatives. Due to their limited access to technical and structural sketches, students have had tasks to begin the skills of product concept sketching.
Year 8 has had the opportunity to develop many types of drawings. From basic sketches, 3D isometric, colour rendering and textured surfaces. Students have also expanded their wider knowledge on modern material and their properties.
Year 9 has been looking deeper into different design movements since the late 1920’s. Students have produced mood boards and complimentary research for design movements that have changed the landscape of our cities such as Art Deco; Art Nouveau; Memphis and Bauhaus.
Year 10 has been building their revision on all required units towards their coursework. Students have recently had the opportunity to produce sketches and research for their desired design brief.
In online Food Technology lessons Year 7 have been building their knowledge and understanding of key ingredients and subject specific terms. They have completed research and design tasks related to using fruits and vegetables as main ingredients and looking at multicultural foods. Many students have created the dishes they have designed, in their own homes, to see if their ideas were successful.
Year 8 have been continuing to build their knowledge and understanding of the design process, functions and use of key ingredients and using subject specific terms. They have completed design and make tasks related to creating new pasta dishes, using fruits and vegetables as main ingredients and researching multicultural foods. Many students have created the dishes they have designed, in their own homes, to see if their ideas were successful.
Year 9 have been consolidating their understanding and knowledge of the design process and have created a range of one pot pasta meals which they have ensured follow the key healthy eating guidelines. They have researched the importance of fruits and vegetables in the diet and how meals can be adapted to contain a higher proportion of both. They have more recently been researching types of foods eaten around the world and the popularity of foods from other cultures in the UK Many students have created the dishes they have designed, in their own homes, to see if their ideas were successful.
Year 10 have been completing their understanding of different food commodities and building their knowledge on skills needed for practicals within these food commodities. They have learnt how to take clearer revision notes for themselves, understanding what points to take down and having a better understanding of the keywords that need to be known. Students have answered exam questions understanding what is needed for different marked questions and also self assessed those exam questions using examples from the textbook used at school. Food investigations have been undertaken, where students have planned the investigation from scratch, researched, performed and evaluated it at the end.
Year 7 had an opportunity to fine tune their theory knowledge within the subject of Drama during online lessons. Students focused on the safety within the Drama studio, watching and analysing trailers from professional performances and embedding their creative writing skills through reviews and devising. Students also had an opportunity to find their confidence and devise/ perform a provided short monologue to a member of their household, thinking about their physical skills.
Year 8 have focused on their theory knowledge within Drama, watching and analysing trailers from professional performance, reviewing performances and using their creative writing skills in writing an A-Z piece linking to a stimulus and theme. Students also had an opportunity to find their confidence and devise/ perform a provided short monologue to a member of their household, thinking about their physical skills.
Year 9 have written an article linking to their opinions on schemes of work and the Globe Theatre. They have had opportunities to plan and devise sets for units of work studied and write reviews on professional performances. Creative writing and an opportunity to devise/ perform a provided short monologue to a member of their household has also been completed, allowing students to think about their physical and performance skills.Year 10 GCSE Drama students have successfully completed research projects for Epic Theatre, Theatre of Cruelty and Naturalist Theatre, as well as completing Live Theatre reviews for professional works. Their latest work has focused on their Component 2 examination, annotating, devising and rehearsing set monologues from provided scripts - evaluating their work weekly, through an evaluative log.
Year 11 GCSE Drama focused purely on Component 3, focusing on their understanding of The Crucible and the theatre review, completing multiple exam style questions and research tasks to broaden, extend and implement their theory knowledge
Year 7 pupils continued to develop their skills in reading and writing in French. They have spent time expanding their vocabulary and having the opportunity to read about the experiences and opinions of other people. The level of French that they are producing is improving all the time with practice of more complicated grammar such as modal and reflexive verbs. They have practised writing about how they use technology in everyday life as well as preparing brochures about their own town and theme parks. Pupils also worked on information about holiday plans and what they like to do.
Year 8 pupils have been expanding their knowledge of French and French culture. They have learned about what Paris has to offer as well as finding out about other countries where French is spoken. Pupils have been learning about how to make their use of French wider and more detailed by using comparative adjectives and a range of tenses. Some time was spent on talking about individual strengths and talents and reading and writing about everyday activities at home. Pupils have been engaging in regular conversations with their teachers via the medium of Google Classroom. Impressively some pupils are now weaning themselves away from translation websites and are beginning to use “real” French.
Year 9 pupils have been getting ready for their launch into GCSE studies and have been reading and writing articles about more GCSE specific material. It has been interesting to hear the ideas that pupils have about their place in the world and about what makes them tick. Pupils have discovered vocabulary relating to human rights, happiness and future intentions. They have developed their French skills by using more complex grammar such as the imperfect tense, reflexive verbs and direct object pronouns. There has been a lot of engagement via Google classroom between pupils and teachers and their increasing confidence in using French for everyday conversations has really developed. Year 9 pupils also talk about holidays and what the ideal holiday would be.
Year 10 pupils have continued working on their GCSE French course. They have had a lot of experience of reading and writing French, as well as developing their speaking skills via Google Classroom. It has been really encouraging to see the number of pupils who have engaged in conversations with their teachers and who have done very good vocabulary research to make these conversations authentic. It is also encouraging to note how many pupils are now moving away from their reliance on translation websites. Some pupils have been listening to French music and entering into dialogue with staff about the merits of this art form!
Topic-wise the pupils have been learning about local area, travel, school and currently they are learning about the pros and cons (no cons) of school. Their language skills have been developing through the use of pluperfect tense, conditional tense as well as using more persons of the verb. Every week the pupils have the chance to prepare an exam type speaking task which involves a role play, a description of a photo and some personal responses to questions about the topic under study.
Year 11 pupils carried out work to support what they had been studying over the last 5 years. They were able to practise the production of French for “real” purposes as well as reading some articles about contemporary issues and lifestyles. Some pupils began to watch some French cinema and listen to some French music – yes it does exist!
In online Geography lessons Year 7 have been exploring the UK. During March and into April they explored the economy of the UK looking at the different sectors of our economy, how it has changed over time and transportation. Following this, year 7 learned about population and development of the world looking at GDP, migration from Mexico to the USA and quality of life and standard of living.
During March and into April year 8 explored the population and development of the world looking at GDP, migration from Mexico to the USA and quality of life and standard of living. Following this, year 8 studied the country of Brazil. During this they studied Brazil’s climate, natural resources and its people.
Year 9 explored the living world. Here, the year 9 cohort studied a range of topics, some being: the characteristics of the rainforests, global distribution of ecosystems and a study of the Malaysian rainforest. Flowing this year 9 moved onto study the coastal environments of the UK covering types of waves, erosion landforms and coastal defence strategies.
Year 10 explored the changing economic world. Here, year 10 covered a range of topics some being: development indicators, causes of uneven development and the consequences of uneven development. Following this, year 10 moved on to study Nigeria in detail looking at the social, cultural and political aspects of the country.
Year 7 students have been flexing their critical and creative muscles in their lockdown English work. During March and early April pupils worked on studying powerful speeches from great historical figures and then writing their own speeches. Following this, they moved onto their own personal history with autobiographical writing. May saw many of us take the only holiday we will have for a while as students explored the delights of Asia, Africa, Antarctica, South America and Australia. Looking at the sights and animals of these places was the starting point for a range of fantastic writing which we hope your children shared with you. June was poetry month for Year 7s as they read classic poems (and wrote a few future classics of their own). We read many funny, strange and touching poems from your children which, once again, we hope they will share with you. At the moment, we are looking at a range of classic prose fiction texts which pupils are analysing and using as a springboard for their own writing.
Alongside this Google Classroom work, we expect your child to be reading widely. There are great electronic and audiobook schemes offered for free by various companies about which your children should be well informed. We hope they keep on reading right through the summer!
Year 8 students have been exercising and developing analytical skills as well as creativity in their lockdown English work. During March and early April pupils worked on their own short stories, exploring key ideas such as setting, plot and character. They kept us entertained with a range of great stories. Hopefully, they showed them to their parents, too! Following this, in April students moved onto a wildlife project where they researched and wrote about a range of beautiful, awesome and terrifying creatures. June was poetry month for Year 8s as they read classic poems (and wrote a few future classics of their own). We read many funny, strange and touching poems from your children which, once again, we hope they will share with you. At the moment, Year 8 are analysing a range of classic fiction texts which they are analysing and using as a springboard for their own writing.
Alongside this Google Classroom work, your children should be reading widely. There are great electronic and audiobook schemes offered for free by various companies who are doing their bit to support schools and their pupils during the lockdown. Please encourage them to carry on reading right through the summer!
Year 9 students have been developing their critical and creative skills in their lockdown English work. During March and April pupils worked on analysis of a number of short stories, many written by authors studied at GCSE and A level. After exploring ideas such as structure, setting and characterisation, students planned and wrote their own short stories. The range of stories was very impressive and certainly impressed and entertained their teachers! (Hopefully, they shared them with their parents as well.) Following this, in May students worked on an ‘out of this world’ Planets unit which saw them exercising their imaginations once again as well as demonstrating their skills in writing in a variety of styles. June was poetry month for Year 9s as they read a range of classic poems and perhaps wrote a few future classics of their own! We read many funny, strange and touching poems from your children which, once again, we hope they shared with you. At the moment, Year 9 are preparing for their first GCSE English text which we will be studying in September. Pupils are exploring the background to J.B. Priestley’s play, ‘An Inspector Calls’. If your children ask you about World War I, the Suffragettes, socialism, capitalism or the Titanic, this is why.
Alongside this Google Classroom work, your children should be reading as much as possible. There are great electronic and audiobook schemes offered for free by various companies who are doing their bit to support schools and their pupils during the lockdown. Please encourage them to carry on reading right through the summer!
Year 10 have had the chance to revise the GCSE literature texts that they studied earlier in the year: Macbeth and An Inspector Calls. They have also studied the majority of the poetry anthology for their GCSE literature exam - this has included exploring the form and language of the poems, as well as comparing them to each other and learning about the social and historical context of the poems.
Year 7: Have been looking at the Tudor era. This is a very popular topic that focuses heavily on the religious changes that took place during the reigns of Henry VIII and each of his three children Edward VI, Mary I and Elizabeth I. More broadly, this has considered the wider significance and impact these changes had on people’s lives. The dissolution of the Monasteries for instance had wide implications on the treatment of the poor, while England’s declining relationship with Catholic Spain eventually led to the threat of the Armada in 1588.
We also have taken time to study more closely the personalities of some of England’s most famous ever Monarchs. Much can be learnt about the changing personality of Henry VIII by looking at the often shocking treatment of his wives, while equally interesting is Elizabeth I’s decision not to marry, perhaps having learnt from her father’s mistakes. Mary I was a somewhat tragic figure - who was commonly known as “Bloody” due to her fierce reputation following on from a very troubled earlier life.
Year 8: After concluding their work on the British Empire, Year 8 have been studying a unit entitled “The road to Emancipation”. This firstly looks at the history of Black Americans from their arrival in North America from Africa as slaves, to gaining their freedom in the 19th Century. This is a very emotional unit that teaches the horrors of slavery and many injustices that took place at this time.
We have then moved on to looking at the racism that Black Americans have faced since the ending of slavery up to near the present day. This initially looked at the “Jim Crow” segregation laws that operated in the Southern States until the 1960’s and key individuals in the civil rights era, such as Rosa Parks, Martin Luther King and Malcolm X.
Year 9: This has been a topic never taught previously at Abbs Cross, which is on Immigration to the UK since 1945. We have looked at why the Second World War resulted in the UK government invited members of Commonwealth nations to emigrate to Britain and their own reasons for doing so. We have then focused initially on the Afro-Caribbean Community, on their expectations on life in the UK, compared to the racial prejudices they often found after their arrival.
A second group of immigrants we have then studied are the 40,000 Asians who were forced to move to Britain in the early 1970’s from East Africa.
We have then looked at the groups within the UK who have opposed immigration and will conclude the unit by looking at the wide impact that immigration has had on the UK today.
Year 10: This has been to continue the study of the Paper 3 unit “Weimar and Nazi Germany” 1918 - 39. In particular, work has covered the period after 1933 once the Nazi Party took control of Germany. How they were able to dismantle the democratic process of the Weimar Republic is a clear warning from history. Once securely in power, we have studied the main institutions of the Third Reich, such as the SS, the Ministry of Propaganda and the Reich Church. We have then looked at how the Nazi regime impact on groups such as women, youths, workers and minority groups such as Jews.
Year 7 support students have been working on the following topic areas such as number properties and calculations, shapes and measures, statistics and decimal calculations. They have also been going through revision on number, measures, statistics and algebra topics.
Year 7 core students have been working on the following topic areas such as transformations, number properties and calculations, area and volume, statistics, graphs and charts. They have also been going through revision on number, measures, statistics and algebra topics.
Year 7 extension students have been working on the following topic areas such as factors and powers, working with powers, transformations, 2D and 3D solids. They have also been going through revision on number, measures, statistics and algebra topics.
Year 8 support students have been working on multiplicative reasoning which includes ratios, proportions, measures and conversions; geometric formulae which include area and perimeter of 2D shapes, area and circumference of circles; probability; polygons and transformations. They have also been going through revision on number, measures and algebra topics.
Year 8 core students have been working on area and circumference of circles, surface area and volume of prisms, calculations involving bounds, Pythagoras’ theorem, sequences and graphs and probability. They have also been going through revision on number, measures and algebra topics.
Year 8 extension students have been working on multiplicative reasoning which includes direct and inverse proportion,arcs and sectors of circles; accuracy and measures which includes rate of change, bounds, density and pressure; Pythagoras’ theorem and trigonometry. They have also been going through revision on number, measures and algebra topics.
The more able students from year 7 and 8 have been participating in the online Maths Challenge. They have been enrolled for the Maths Challenge competition which runs from 22nd of June to 3rd of July 2020.
Year 9 higher tier students have been working on perimeter, area and volume of 2D and 3D; transformations; probability; multiplicative reasoning which includes growth and decay, compound measures, ratio and proportion. They have also been going through revision on number, measures and algebra topics.
Year 9 foundation tier students have been working on averages and range; perimeter, area and volume of 2D and 3D shapes; transformations.They have also been going through revision on number, measures and algebra topics.
Year 10 higher tier students have been working on further statistics which includes cumulative frequency diagrams, box plots and histograms; circle theorems; more algebra which includes rearranging harder formulae, simplifying algebraic fractions, adding, subtracting, multiplying and dividing algebraic fractions. They have also been going through revision such as solving simultaneous equations, four operations with fractions and mixed numbers, calculations involving bounds, factorising quadratic expressions, solving quadratic equations using factorisation, formula and completing the square methods.
Year 10 foundation tier students have been working on multiplicative reasoning which includes percentages, growth and decay, compound measures, speed, distance and time; perimeter, area and volume of 2D and 3D shapes respectively.They have also been going through revision on number topics.
Year 7 Music studied a range of activities focusing on practical and theory tasks. Students research how to be a good band member, song writing and structure of pop music, as well as create a verse and chorus to a backing choice of their own. Students have completed practical tasks through Incredibox and The Musical Alphabet tasks.
Year 8 Music focused on a range of theory and practical tasks, researching genres of dance, musical practitioners and writing persuasive articles and reviews on musical opinions. Students have completed practical tasks through Incredibox and The Musical Alphabet tasks.
Year 9 students have had opportunities to discuss and study composers, artists and genres of music through research, reviewing and quizzes to increase musical content knowledge and understanding. Students have completed practical tasks through Incredibox and The Musical Alphabet tasks.
Year 10 have continued their music studies, focusing mostly on the theory elements as well as their practical units. Students have learnt new key terms and have increased their knowledge and understanding of Listening and Appraising written paper. Students have looked in detail at 'Pop convention', 'Film Music, ‘Concerto’ and completed exam style questions' and revision tasks. All students have been encouraged to participate in practical tasks, focusing on instrument and/or voice, as well as composing - to work towards composing and performance knowledge and skills.
Year 11 GCSE Music focused purely on Listening and Appraising, gaining a clear understanding of all Areas of Study, as well as answering multiple exam style questions, using listening resources.
Year 7, 8, and 9 pupils started by carrying out theory fact files on specific sports and then a number of practical lessons. Joe Wicks came to the rescue for a while with ‘PE with Joe’ online activity classes. Year 7, 8, and 9 pupils then went on to learn some components of fitness activities.
They have looked at Agility, Coordination and cardiovascular endurance. Moving on to training types later on we focussed on circuit training and home fitness testing. By now many parents had begun to join in the fun and support their children. Following on from that, and the need for the nation to watch and participate in football, we worked on some ‘stay at home’ football and golf. Again many families joined together to compete against one another. Whilst it has been an unusual time for us, the students have risen to the challenge in an outstanding manner.
Year 10 and 11 core PE classes have been completing a number of practical activities including couch to 5k, 10k runs and circuit training to mention a few.
In GCSE PE classes, we have continued with the theoretical part of the course during lockdown, starting with some revision of previous topics, psychological factors affecting performance,the skeletal and muscular system, types of joint and movement, We have then moved onto the coursework aspect of the syllabus. Students have been completing this analysis and evaluation for performance.
In Year 7 pupils learned about Judaism, focusing on the Jewish festival of Passover. They then completed a unit of work on Sikhism, researching the 5Ks and Guru Nanak. This was followed by a unit on Hinduism, during which they considered the concept of reincarnation and the Mandir. They also studied the Muslim festival of Eid Ul-Fitr. Their final unit of work involved finding out about Buddhism, including the Buddha, the 4 noble truths and the 8-fold path.
In Year 8 pupils considered religious responses to why evil and suffering exist, focusing on Christian. Muslim and Jewish beliefs. They created a holocaust memorial as part of their end of unit assessment. They then studied Islam, focusing on the Qur’an, the 5 pillars and the prophets. They studied Christianity for their final unit presenting their findings about Christian sacraments, as well as about Jesus’ crucifixion, resurrection and ascension.
In Year 9 pupils studied Christian practices such as pilgrimage, street pastors and the role of the church locally and worldwide. They then studied Human Rights and Christian and Muslim views on prejudice, wealth and religious expression. For their final unit on Crime and Punishment Year 9 considered Christian and Muslim responses to a range of issues such as forgiveness, the treatment of criminals and capital punishment.
In Year 10 pupils completed their unit on Peace and Conflict, reviewing religious responses to victims of war. They then moved on to look at Crime and Punishment considering the reasons why people commit crimes, as well as the aims of punishment. Year 10 then focused on Christian and Muslim responses to how criminals should be treated.
In Science, the year 7s have had the opportunity to explore topics such as The Earth and the Solar System. They have learnt about the phases of the moon and about lunar and solar eclipses. They have also been learning about the different types of rocks on Earth and have learnt about volcanic eruptions and tectonic plates.
In Science, the year 8s have been spending a lot of time reinforcing the knowledge from topics they have been learning throughout the year, in preparation for their transition into year 9 and GCSE Science. They have also started to cover some topics which bridge the gap between Key Stage 3 and GCSE, including radioactive materials, genetics, immunity and vaccines which has helped them to understand the global pandemic we are facing.
In Science, the year 9s have been continuing to cover the GCSE content for the first paper of their GCSEs. They have also learnt a lot of infectious diseases and how our bodies respond to these, which has helped them to understand the global pandemic we are facing.
In Science, the year 10 students have also covered important global topics, including the extraction of oil, deforestation, global warming and climate change. They have learnt about the impact of humans on the planet and its biodiversity and can describe the ways in which we can all play our part in trying to save our planet.
Year 10 Sociology continued to study the topic of ‘Education’. Here, students looked at ethnicity in education, difference of achievement between boy and girls and the evolution of the British education system. Following this, students revised elements of the ‘Families’ unit covering the Marxist, feminist and functionalist approach to families within our society.
Year 10 has had an opportunity to reinforce their prior learning during lockdown. They reviewed the key texts with their teacher which had already been introduced in the first half of the academic year. This has allowed Year 10 to focus on units including Music Video, Film Industry and the Crime Genre. There have been exam-focused questions anchoring this distance learning. The exam questions have centred around the set texts that students have covered during class time. The students have copies of the print based advertisements, these include the 1950's ‘Quality Street’ advert, and the contemporary ‘This Girl Can’ campaign. The film industry element is centred around the Bond franchise, in particular the film ‘Spectre' and the promotional material for that film & the heritage text ‘Man with the Golden Gun’. The music video set texts and promotional material of artists Katy Perry (ROAR), Pharell Williams (FREEDOM), and the heritage text is ‘Waterfalls’ by TLC. The TV industry unit centres around the crime genre, the set texts ‘Luther’ and ‘The Sweeney’ have been studied. Pupils have been encouraged to expand on their exposure to different British crime drama, both contemporary and from the past.