Monthly Archives

September 2016

Prep Positions Of Responsibility

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Following nail biting letter applications and interviews, Mrs Crouch awarded Year 6 with their positions of responsibility for this year in assembly today.  She commented that all the children in the class were incredibly confident in their interviews and all are excellent role models to the other children in prep, making her decisions very difficult.

Thomas, Christopher, Harrison, Florence, James, Arran and Oscar are all Prep prefects.

Ruby and Abigail are House Captains for Martyrs and Olly and Archie, House Captains for Scholars.

The Sports Captains are Ben and Felicity.

Prep Head girl and boy are Sorcha and Matthew supported by Maeve and Oliver as Deputy Head girl and boy.

Well done to all of you – you will all be great in your new positions!



Oakhill World Record Breakers

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In June, Mrs Smith and 11 pupils took part in a world record attempt. The aim was to participate in the world’s largest rounders match. It was organised by the ‘get into rounders’ initiative that is run by Burnley leisure and which Mrs Smith is a member of. The match took place at Towneley Park and consisted of 120 women, men and children playing rounders! As you can imagine with 60 fielders as opposed to 9 it wasn’t a very high scoring match!

Officials from the Guinness Book of Records were present to officiate the attempt and the match was filmed by various cameras to be sent off to Guinness to confirm the record. The record was achieved and Oakhill pupils are now Guinness World Record holders! The pupils that took part were Abi, Georgina, Chloe, Maisie, James, Daniel, Wesley, Alfie, Lily and Meghan along with Mrs Smith.

Aresson the official sponsors of the event awarded all of those involved a limited edition gold rounders bat with their batting order number on it. A brilliant day had by all and an achievement to be proud of!

Senior Student Council

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The new Student Council for 2016 has been elected. Under the leadership of Jacob and Taylor, lots of new projects are in the pipeline. The elected representatives from Years 7 to 10 will be the voice of their form groups and work to improve school life, fundraise and link to the Community. Updates on their work will be on the school website throughout the year so watch this space….


World Day of Languages

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Year 11 kicked off Oakhill’s celebrations for the World Day of Languages by wearing sombreros to help them improve their Spanish this morning!

The Vocab express competition begins on Wednesday and the Europa competition, which is open to years 3-8, is already underway.

Prep Student Council

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Here is the Prep School Student Council for the new academic year. Each class voted for the people from their own year group who wanted to stand. They are:

Oliver and Sorcha from Year Six, Maisey and Finn from Year Five, Noah and Lily-Ella from Year Four, James and Georgia from Year Three, Charlotte from Year Two, Thomas from Year One and  Jacob from Reception. Well done everyone and we are sure you will do an excellent job.



Year 11 Triple Science

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Year 11 Triple Science group visited Headingly Water Treatment Works to find out about how water is made safe to drink. They toured the site and gained an appreciation of the scale of the process and the various steps involved in getting water from reservoirs and rivers to our taps.

The Yorkshire Water education team were excellent in explaining the chemistry and reasons for the treatment and answered all our questions. It was a very informative visit which has definitely helped Year 11’s to understand the potable water process.

Year Three News

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Year Three are all very excited as they have received their new iPads for use in their class lessons. They are really looking forward to using them to help with their learning across all subjects.

LAMDA Success

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The London Academy of Music and Dramatic Art (LAMDA) lessons continue to grow stronger here at Oakhill. Last year there were 50 students from Pre-School all the way through to Secondary School who took these lessons with our teacher Claire Haymes.

The LAMDA lessons are a great extra curricular lesson for our pupils as they help with reading and literacy skills, confidence, communication skills, diction and of course performance skills. The examinations with LAMDA also enable our students to gain extra UCAS points if they wish to attend University in the future.

Recently 30 of our students took examinations with LAMDA in June. The results were outstanding, with students gaining either a Merit (with 65 marks or above) or a Distinction (with 80 marks or above)!

The results are fantastic and we would like to say a huge well done to all those who took the recent examinations, the results really are a testament to all their hard work and talent. A special mention must go to Isabella Zappa from Year 1 who gained full marks, 100%, in her first LAMDA exam! We would also like to say well done to those students who didn’t take exams this time but have all still been working so hard during their Speech and Drama lessons and their progression has also been outstanding.

LAMDA lessons started in school on Monday 19th September, please make sure you have signed up for these lessons if you haven’t already.


School Games Conference

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Mrs Smith attended the annual sports conference for the HRVSSP Hyndburn and Ribble Valley School Sports Partnership that Oakhill competes in. It is a great event that reviews the previous year and plans ahead for PE and Games for the current academic year.

The event began with an analysis of the local provisions with the Ribble Valley and Hyndburn borough being one of the busiest in the North West and coming 3rd over all in the Level Three school games event in which Oakhill qualified to compete in Orienteering and won for the whole North West. The next awards were given to individual schools. Oakhill were awarded second place in the borough.

This is a fantastic achievement for a small school. Points were awarded for the number and variety of competitions entered and bonus points were awarded for placing in medal positions in these events. Oakhill scored exceptionally highly and were only beaten by 7 points by the winning school which is more than 3 times the size of Oakhill! This is a fantastic achievement that we are very proud of. It is testament to our hard working staff and pupils and the daily effort that they put in to offer our pupils the best and most varied opportunities! So well done every one! This year we are going for gold!

Natasha Jonas the first British female Olympic boxer then spoke about her life in sport. She said it all started due to the sports she was offered at school and the belief her teachers put into her. Natasha played for England at football but after a career ending injury when studying at university in America her dreams were shattered! Natasha was broken and attended a boxing class to build her confidence and lose the weight she had gained through injury. Little did she know that it would be her new fitness hobby that took her to the 2012 Olympic Games in London. Natasha stated that boxing was a skill but it was her experiences in sport throughout her life that made her an Olympian! She believes it is the winning and losing in sport that builds the resilience in an athlete along with focus, dedication and hard work that makes a champion! This was an inspirational talk and matched Oakhill’s Ethos perfectly!

The afternoon was spent in seminar groups and Mrs Smith completed a seminar on how to identify Gifted and Talented pupils in PE and create links and opportunities to allow them to succeed.  There will be 3 workshops throughout the year in which we are able to nominate some of our Year 5 & 6 Gifted and Talented athletes to attend.

Finally it was time for a practical workshop, this was skipping for fitness. Mrs Smith took part and learned new ways to skip individually, in groups and French skipping which will be introduced in lessons, clubs and play times throughout the school. We are going to take part in the national initiative to get our pupils to complete 100 skips per day and we plan to take part in National Skipping Day on 21st April 2017, in which the whole school will be involved skipping on the given day! So get practising and watch this space!

Calling All Young Photographers!

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The Royal Horticultural Society are running their annual photography competition for young people. This year it is to photograph herbs. There are two age groups 5-10 and 11-17 and you can enter up to 4 photos.

Click here to find out more

Photos should be emailed to Miss Stagg at Stagg.s@oakhillschool.co.uk with your name, date of birth and a brief description of your photograph. I know there are some wonderful photographers out there so get snapping!


World War 1 Battlefields Exhibition

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The photo story of the school trip to Belgium in July 2016 now has a special exhibition at Whalley Library. Librarian, Janice Westwood, helped students research the story of two Whalley men whose memorials students visited during the 5 day cycle trip of the Ypres Salient.

The research added a whole new element to the trip and enabled students and staff to see the cost of the Great War paid by families in small communities. One local lad of 19, Alan Edwin Barnes, had his records in the library but no photo of his grave and so the students were able to bring a photo back for the library records.

Our thanks to Janice and her team at the Library for helping us with the visit and please take time to go and see the exhibition when you are next in Whalley.

New Baby And Toddler Room

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We are pleased to announce the opening of our new Baby and Toddler Unit.

This is a complete unit, with its own outdoor areas, specifically for the 0-2’s.

We have maintained both a Baby Room and a Toddler Room, but the children are now able to frequently mix, aiding the transition from one year group to the next.

All our children have been thrilled with the new rooms and are already helping to decorate them with their beautiful craft activities!


International Images For Science 2016

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The five winners of the Royal Photographic Society’s International Images for Science competition have been announced and we are delighted that former Head Girl Jessica Chatburn is the Gold (17 and under) winner.

Jessica entered the Royal Photographic Society’s – Society’s International Images for Science competition after Oakhill’s Head of Science, Miss Stagg, emailed her the information as part of the school’s excellent, STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths) programme. There were over 2,500 entries to the competition with entrants ranging from students and amateur photographers, to professional and medical photographers, from all over the world.

Two of Jessica’s photographs were chosen for the top 100 in the competition which will tour as an exhibition and were taken with a Nikon D3200 on a family road trip to California in summer 2014. The shot that won Jessica the first place in the competition was called Swarms of Chrysaora Fuscescens taken at Monterey Aquarium and was part of a large number of shots she took on the trip.

The evening of Tuesday 13th September saw Jessica invited to the Royal Academy of Engineering, London, to a presentation evening for the winners host by the Royal Photographic Society and Siemens. There were only two British winners, one who won the bronze medal for the over 26’s and Jessica who won the only prize and Gold medal in her category under 17’s. 

It was a lovely evening culminating in Jessica receiving her medal and prizes. Jessica said she hadn’t really appreciated the significance of the competition and her success. Particularly when she was informed that the top 100 exhibition pieces which will tour the country, of which two of Jessica’s photographs were included, were selected blind of age category or name and judged purely on merit. 

The exhibition marks the beginning of the 2016 tour which will be in Manchester from 22nd October – 1st November 2016, where you will have the chance to see Jessica’s photographs.

Jessica would like to eventually study either Architecture or Engineering but has a particular love of Music, Art and Photography. We wish Jessica all the best for the future.

Prep Rugby Training

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Hitting the ground running, our boys in upper prep enjoyed a day out to Giggleswick on the first day of term. We were invited to a rugby coaching clinic at Catterall Hall which gave the boys a taster of the game, introducing basic skills and techniques.

The year 4 group started with ball control and simple passing techniques, moving quickly on to small games where they learnt how to tackle safely, and even score a few tries!

The year 6 group enjoyed learning more advanced skills, taking on pupils from 3 other schools. They learnt how to pass the ball on the run, and how to dodge and tackle their opponents.  At the end of the session they also learnt about the scrum.

The boys worked hard and progressed well. They are now looking forward to developing their skills during lunchtime sessions with Miss Rollason this term.

Welcome Back

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Our Reception class looked extremely smart this morning on their first day at Oakhill.

Also, we welcomed our new starters to Year 7, all ready for Senior school.

We look forward to a happy and successful term ahead.

Coast to Coast – Day 4 & 5

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Coast to Coast – the final 2 days!

We set off from Barnard Castle campsite and were happy to hear that the day was going to be flat. Full of energy from the BBQ the last night and the marshmallows around the fire, we flew through the first half of the ride and almost couldn’t believe how quickly we reached the halfway mark and more importantly lunch! We then cycled to Great Ayton where we stopped for ice creams and snacks and cycled to our campsite where we enjoyed the showers and the animals which were at the site.  Altogether we cycled 52 miles – a bit more than expected!

Today we set of on our final leg to Whitby. It was very hilly throughout the day and there was much relief when we got to the top of the hills.  We followed the river Esk to Whitby having lunch in Egton.  We eventually got to Whitby and saw the sea, and had some time to explore.  We cycled 35 miles and everyone was happy to finish the journey from The Irish Sea to here at the North Sea over 180 miles in total.  We have all had a fantastic adventure and great fun.

Tomorrow we have a small bonus leg as we cycle to Scarborough where we can cycle into the sea itself and take our total mileage up to 200!  Then it’s home for mums cooking and a proper bed.

Blog by James Sutterby and Alex Lutwyche