Monthly Archives

July 2015

Silver D of E Final Expedition

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Congratulations go to our Silver Duke of Edinburgh’s Award group who have now successfully completed their final expedition.

After brushing up on their survival skills in the Ribble Valley, and then undertaking a 3 day practice expedition in the North Yorkshire Dales in April, they headed up to the Lake District on the 8th July for their assessed expedition. Their route was challenging, beginning on day one with a long climb from Lorton to the summit of Hopegill Head before descending to camp at Thornthwaite.  Day 2 saw a climb up to Carl Side and Ullock Pike to make a second camp in Bassenthwaite. The final day was yet another climb up to Skiddaw House before finishing in Mosedale to the welcome sight of the minibus.  Thankfully the weather was kind and conditions were good.

The team, made up of William Singleton, Tom Exton, Dominic Smith, Sam Reedy and Meghan Whitehead worked well together, looking after each other and working hard to pass their assessment. They did an excellent job and enjoyed the adventure. Well done team, and thanks too to the D of E staff for giving up their time to keep an eye on them!

Children’s Cookery Workshops!

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Oakhill and Birchall Foodservice have co-sponsored
‘The Food Academy’ 5 children’s cookery workshops throughout the day at this years Clitheroe Food Festival – Saturday 8th August.
Give your children a wonderful cookery experience with their own food box, apron, chefs hat and tuition provided for only £2.50 and you get to take home the great food you have made!

Follow this link http://clitheroefoodfestival.com/event/workshop-1

CFF Academy Flyer

Down on the Farm with Year 4

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As an end of term treat, Year Four visited a farm which has an anaerobic digester.  They found out about how a digester works and what it can produce.

They looked at a field of wheat which is used as part of the ‘feed’ for the plant. Other ingredients include grass, whey from a cheese factory and slurry.

The digester produces enough gas to create electricity for 1800 homes!

Our thanks go to Charlotte and Jeremy Ashby for allowing us to visit the plant.



Year 9 re-create the Eiffel Tower

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Following their trip to Paris, Year 9 were given the challenge of producing the tallest Eiffel Tower which could stand unsupported for at least 20 seconds.

They were provided with one newspaper, ten paper clips and one metre of sellotape. Well done to Millie, Emma and Taylor who were the winners!

Year 9 Malham Adventure

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After an excellent few days in Paris, Year Nine finished off their activity week with a day in the great outdoors as they headed to the Yorkshire Dales.

Pupils undertook a walk around Malham in the sunshine, learning about the National Park and the limestone features of the area.

They walked through Janet’s Foss and viewed a flowstone waterfall, before heading into Goredale, scrambling up the waterfall of Goredale scar – the only way out of the small valley.

They then headed up to Malham Tarn to trace the disappearing river, and descended down the spectacular cliff face of Malham Cove.  There was time at the end for a quick paddle and an ice cream.





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Mary Riley and Eve Starkie have been working on a project for the last two weeks based on the film Frozen.

They have been working together to recreate a scene from the film.

Here are the fruits of their very creative labours and partnership.

Next stop Disney animation studios!


Lancashire School Games

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Oakhill attended the level three Lancashire Spar school games hosted by Rock FM. This was a wonderful event and our key stage three orienteers had done very well to be the winners of our borough and to be representing the Ribble Valley. We had an early start from school in order to be in Blackpool at 9am for the opening ceremony. This was reflective of the Olympic opening ceremony and was hosted by Rock FM DJ Jordan North. We proudly paraded around the track with our area and school banner held high wearing our bright yellow t shirts to show we were part of the Ribble Valley team.

After making our sportsmanship pledges we were treated to a couple of songs by 2014 X factor finalist Jack Walton along with dance and acrobatics tricks from the street monkeys.

After a great experience it was down to the competition, and our team were eager and ready to go. We had entered 4 mixed pairs into the competition as a team of eight.  Our pairs were Maisie Holme and Tom Temperley, Louis Coupe and Chloe lee, Lily Royle and Arthur Shaw, Ellis Lund and Chloe Gardiner. The teams were set off in heats and all had the challenge of finding 20 control points across the whole area of 260 acres at Stanley Park.

This challenge was made even more difficult by the 30 minute time limit and time penalties were enforced for any pair that returned late. The teams shot off quickly surveying the map as they ran, all of the teams planned a route that covered the check points that were closer together before visiting the individual points further afield.

It was a pleasure for Mrs Smith and Mrs O’Kane to sit back and watch the maturity and team work that our pupils possessed as they frequently ran past the coffee shop! All four Oakhill pairs returned within the time limit showing great timing, pacing and planning.

As the results were coming through we looked like we had done very well. The organisers had stated that all 20 check points within the given time was almost impossible so when our pairs came in with results of 17, 15 and 12 we knew that we had done well. Once all pairs had returned we ate lunch and treated ourselves to ice cream to celebrate a job done well. After what seemed like an age the results were announced! Oakhill had won the bronze medals and when our points were accumulated we had come third over all.

The team were very pleased with their performance and looked forward to being awarded their medals in the closing ceremony. Our medals were presented by The Mayor and Mayoress of Blackpool. All pupils performed fantastically well on the day however,  special mentions must go to our second pair Louis Coupe and Chloe Lee who achieved the second top score out of more than 40 pairs. These were the stars of the show on the day and were competing against children a school year older than themselves.

We spent the afternoon getting involved in the many cultural experiences on offer including karaoke, judo taster sessions, dance shows, the mobile climbing wall  and our teams favourite the high ropes course. We also enjoyed cheering on our borough in the many other activities: tennis, Tball, rugby, rounders and netball to mention a few. We are hoping to make this an annual event and hope to return in the summer of 2016 and represent in a variety of sports. Mrs Smith is hoping for Oakhill to represent in gymnastics, Tball and orienteering next year so watch this space!

Mountain Biking

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A group of staff, parents and pupils headed out once again to Gorple moor above Burnley on Sunday 5th July for another mountain bike adventure. The route had been previously attempted earlier in the year but we were slowed down by the snow at the time!

Thankfully there was no snow this weekend – just sunshine and a gentle breeze. Everybody enjoyed the miles of off road trails with the tough climbs rewarded with excellent long, speedy downhills. We also enjoyed the new single track downhill at Hurstwood.

The End of an Era

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It is with great sadness that we say goodbye to Mr Gray this week. Mr Gray has worked at Oakhill since 1979 and is very much a part of Oakhill.

We wish him every happiness in his well deserved retirement and we look forward to seeing him at Prize Giving in November if not before.

Year 6 Leavers Assembly

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Tears flowed as Year 6 enjoyed a hearty send off during the Final Prep Assembly on Thursday. Before reading out their memories of school, they had to play a game of recognising themselves from the descriptions they had written earlier in the term.

They were treated to pictures of their baby and toddler days, secretly sent in by their parents! Each child was presented with a leaving present of a book as a momento of their time in Prep before entertaining parents and friends with songs and poetry written for the occasion.

The annual awards were given out to deserving pupils and included: The Sports Award, won by Bradley Barnes, Jake Chippendale and Will Barrass for the boys and Grace Garstang and Jessie McHugh for the girls; The Principal’s Cup was awarded to Bridget Morgan; the Outstanding Achievement Award was given to Alex Lutwyche for his exceptional attainment in Maths this year; the Award for Speech and Drama went to Toby Knight and Sam Chatburn; Alicia Birchall and Alexander Denton both won the award for Service to the School; Leighton Wilson picked up his award for Consistent Effort and Ava Whowell for Overall Improvement; and Charlotte Bank and Joshua Dickinson were rewarded for their improvement during the year.

The Head Boy and Head Girl were thanked for their services to Prep by Mrs Wilson and received commemorative trophies.

The assembly ended with Year 6 singing a rendition of Slipping Through My Fingers whilst watching the traditional slide show of their memorable photos from their various Prep activities over the years.

Goodbye Year 6 – you have been a fantastic class. We all wish you well as you move on to seniors!

Bug hotels

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Following on from their work on garden design for the Southport Flower Show, Year 5 have turned their hands from horticulture to woodwork, each producing their own wooden bug hotel for their gardens.

With the expert help of Mr Turner (husband of our own Mrs Turner and skilled joiner) the children learned how to saw, sand, nail and construct. Having created the bug box shell from pallet wood, the children then measured and cut lengths of cane, old felt tips, and pieces of wood to fill the boxes.

The result? Stylish and Eco-friendly homes for the invaluable little bugs in our gardens!

Girls U15 Cricket Tournament

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Oakhill entered the U15 girls cricket tournament at Ribblesdale Wanderers Cricket Club.  It was a gloriously sunny afternoon and a great experience for all involved. We took a young team due to our Year 10s being on work experience, our team consisted of Year 8’s and 9’s but this did not faze them at all.

Our first match was against Hollins, this was a fantastic match and after some last minute fine tuning of bowling technique with Mr Edgar the girls batted and fielded well. It was a close match that gave us the confidence to go up against the reigning champions Ribblesdale.

This was a good match where we learnt the importance of team work and backing up our team mates. Ribblesdale proved to be a little too strong for us and had a range of fantastic bowlers who ensure that they pulled away from us with a good lead. However, special mentions must go to Imogen Campbell who proved herself to be an excellent tactical batter scoring many 4s and 6s with a variety of shots that managed to hit the gaps on the boundary.

Taylor Leah also made some dynamic and valiant stops of the ball to keep the run deficit down. Our final match was against St. Christopher’s, this was another close match played in great spirit with both teams showing a sporting etiquette to be proud of. Emma Jacks was the star of the show in this match showing great movement and catching skills.

A good afternoon with lots of new skills utilised, we plan to focus more time on cricket next year as the girls have an abundance of potential that we aim to tap into.

UCLan Language Enrichment Day

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Do you know that 75% of the world’s population speak no English at all? And that there are 6,912 known living languages in the world?  Year 8 were keen to learn more about these exciting facts during their recent trip to UCLan for a Language Enrichment Event.

About 129 languages are spoken in schools in the North West and today was our chance to learn two new ones.

During the day, the interested linguists were also keen to try their hand at two new languages: Italian and Russian. They learnt to greet each other, count to ten, how to interpret gestures and write their own name with the Russian alphabet. In addition, they found out key information about the countries.

All pupils thoroughly enjoyed the day. Wesley and Megan were chosen by the university staff for their extra effort and enthusiasm throughout the day and were kindly rewarded with a goody bag!

Oakhill hosts the Ribble Valley and Hyndburn dodge ball tournament

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Oakhill hosted the Ribble Valley and Hyndburn dodge ball tournament. This was a fantastic opportunity and all of our year threes and fours competed in the event, which enabled us to enter two teams in the tournament.

The games were very exciting and fast paced. Our pupils had to be very agile and dynamic in order to dodge the fast paced balls coming towards them.

Oscar Knight displayed some fantastic diving skills to dodge the ball that stem from his rugby tackling. Monty Cort proved himself to be a force to be reckoned with as he was frequently left as the last man standing in the games. Finally Abigail Lofthouse lived up to the name she earned last year ‘Betty Spaghetti!’ with her long lean limbs and could be heard self motivating herself with her mantra ‘no one messes with Betty Spaghetti!’

A fun filled afternoon was enjoyed by all pupils and a good work out was had due to the long 15 minute matches. Out of the seven schools entered our teams came in joint second and came away with the silver medals!

A great achievement by all. Once again a very well run and organised event led by our excellent young leaders in Year 9.

Years 2 & 5 celebrate Mass

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On a very, very hot Tuesday afternoon the children in Years 2 and 5, alongside parents and grandparents, celebrated their class mass. Father Gee from St Michael and St. John in Clitheroe kindly came to lead the mass with the theme being Diversity.

Father Gee spoke about the importance of us all being unique and how lucky we all are that we are all loved by God and our parents and family before we are even born. The children read well, sang beautifully and played their instruments too. It was a thoroughly enjoyable celebration and the children enjoyed their cornflake cake treat too afterwards although an ice cream may have been better.

Dirty Habits

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Year 8 recently visited Whalley Abbey as part of their study of the early Church in England.  The Cistercian Monks built the Abbey in the 14th Century.

These monks wore white habits with a black scapula and it is reckoned that because these garments were only washed once, at best twice a year, that is where we get the phrase from “dirty habits”.

The Abbey is also the resting place of John de Lacy who was one of the 25 Barons who forced King John to sign the Magna Carta in 1215.  His grave is of central position in the Abbey church.

The monastery passed into private hands in 1537 with the dissolution of the monasteries.  The monastery owned 800 acres of land around Whalley.  Someone got a bargain when in 1553 they purchased it for £2,151!  In 1923 the Church of England acquired possession of the monastery.

The Abbey’s remains are very impressive and our guide was able to explain to us how the Abbey functioned and what life was like for the monks.  It was certainly educational and we are grateful to Whalley Abbey and our guide for hosting our visit.

We’re going to the zoo zoo zoo!

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The baby room had a lovely trip to Blackpool Zoo on Friday 26th June.

The Babies and Staff enjoyed seeing lots of animals including giraffes, lions and penguins to name a few.

The drizzly day didn’t stop them having a picnic lunch before continuing their animal search.

Thank you to Mr Noble for driving the minibus to get us all there.