This year, IBDP students studying Ab initio Japanese have begun correspondence with students attending Kitakyushu National College of Technology in Fukuoka in Japan. Pen pals were assigned to each student, and started by sending an introductory letter in Japanese to said partners, before receiving a reply in both English and Japanese. We have found it very beneficial to our studies because it gives us sufficient practice in reading and writing Japanese outside the classroom. This will continue for the present students until next year as the next line of students begin their pen pal project.
One of Year 13 ab initio Japanese students says “I like the idea. It is enjoyable because it’s different to writing in exams. It’s also helped me with using sentence structures, using extensive vocabulary, and reading Kanji characters”. Some comment on how, “It’s fun to communicate with Japanese people abroad.” Others have also expressed interest in questioning their pen pals about their different culture and lifestyles, stating that, “It was enlightening; I enjoyed communicating with someone from a different culture as it helped me better understand the culture.”
Having initially started from an idea presented by one of the students in the previous year, there are high hopes that this will be an activity for all Japanese Ab Initio students to participate in for years to come. If possible, this sort of correspondence could lead to future exciting developments for IBCP students studying Japanese and culture.
Dane Court Grammar School is celebrating another year of outstanding GCSE results: 97% of students gained at least five GCSE passes at grades A*-C. 46% of students gained 5 or more grades at A*/A. Among our outstanding students, Gowri Satish achieved 10A* grades and 2 As, Charlotte Butler, Sally Warren and Malgorzata Plichter gained 9 A* grades and at least two further A grades; Sally Warren also scored one of the highest marks in the country in her Further Mathematics GCSE. Banisha Aktar, Sam Nicholson and Lauren Palmer-Jones each gained 8A* and at least 3 further A grades. Other top-scoring students included Niharigah Arulampalam, Adele Atkins, Evan Usher, Bradley Garrod, Elly Harvey, Sophie Mallett, Becky Ward, Vita Welcome and Amod Shrestha, all of whom gained between 9 and 12 A* and A grades. Science results were again extremely impressive, with 87% of students gaining A* and A grades in Biology, Chemistry and Physics.
These excellent results mean that the large majority of students have secured the grades they need to progress to high-achieving sixth-form International Baccalaureate courses at Dane Court. Head of School Andrew Fowler said, “these superb results reflect the hard work of the students and the wonderful support they have received from their teachers and parents. A number of students have overcome great personal hardship, and I congratulate them on their success.” Sarah Snaydon, Assistant Headteacher, said “we are enormously proud of all our year 11 students, many of whom have achieved at the highest level. They and their teachers have worked incredibly hard to achieve these superb results.” Chair of Governors Dr Virginia Austin commented, “Governors are intensely proud of the achievements of students and staff at Dane Court.”
Student Gowri Satish said’ I am so over the moon, when I saw my results I couldn’t believe the number of A*’s. I am pleased that all my hard work paid off’
Banisha Aktar said ‘I am really pleased particularly with my Product Design and Physics results as I found these subjects particularly challenging. I never thought in a million, trillion years I would achieve results like these.’
Year 8 student Oliver Hampton-Saint won Gold for England in the recent Junior Sea Shore Angling Home Nations competition in County Wexford, Ireland beating teams from Ireland, Wales and Scotland. Oliver is the youngest member of the six stong England team with other team members being aged 16-17years.
Oliver tells us the secrets of the team's success:
‘On the first day we had a really early start, however with all my adrenaline I was wide awake. We drove to our ferry which took us to the beautiful coast of County Wexford. We swiftly arrived at our hotel where I met with all the other England team members. On day one we headed out to our practise venues where we caught piles of flounders and baby eels, this was part of our game plan due to our “spies”. On day two we thought we had it covered in the strategic side of things so when the competition started we were ‘smashing the comp’ however the Scots started catching bigger fish and began to mount a challenge. That is how the rest of the competition went on. When the final day came to an end there was no more we can do...
On day one we were joint 1st, so that meant the next day we needed to work extra hard to beat the Scottish. But as the day went on all the teams had started copying our tactics as we were being really successful. Fortunately we were far enough ahead and I was delighted when we won GOLD for all our hard work; beating the Scottish, Welsh and Irish was really satisfying !!!!’