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Board Games Club

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A popular way for Prep to spend their Friday lunchtimes is attending our regular board games club.

It’s a great way to practise skills in cooperation and critical thinking as well as having fun  working together, taking turns , solving problems and explaining the rules to each other.

Resilience Day

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This term, all pupils from Year 5 to Year 11 took part in a resilience training day during which they learnt about ways in which they can help themselves to maintain positive mental health and wellbeing in the face of the many stresses they face in life.

The day was a lot of fun and the students have been overwhelmingly positive about what they have learnt, from the importance of quality sleep to an exercise designed to help them recognise and value their own strengths.

We hope the skills they have learned will help them in the future.

Chess Tournament

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Pupils from years 6 – 11 thoroughly enjoyed representing Oakhill this week at a Chess tournament, kindly hosted by St Augustine’s.

Our children have been working with Harrison and Matthew in Year 9 in a lunchtime practice club and were very much looking forward to trying out their skills against some new opponents.

They certainly rose to the challenge as they came out overall winners.

Considering the young age of many of our team, against Year 8 and Year 10 pupils, we are extremely proud of their achievements.  Well done and thank you to our hosts for a fantastic evening.

Top Of The Bench Competition

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Saturday was a dark and cool January morning and four of our finest pupils climbed on the bus to head off to Lancaster University for the Royal Society of Chemistry Top of the Bench Competition. Not a run of the mill Saturday by any means and the closure of the M6 posed a logistical problem to us. Six teams from Lancashire were pitting their wits against each other for one of the places in the final, to be held this year in London.

Our team of four contained Harrison, Matthew, Olly and Sam, who donned their lab coats and safety goggles and braved the elements! First up was the practical challenge “Christmas…the Aftermath!” with the group being split in two. Harrison and Olly undertook a task to find out who Santa was involving chromatography, fingerprint and ions analysis and Matthew and Sam used titration and colourimety to work out which indigestion tablet was the best at combating the excesses of Christmas!

The afternoon session was a written test with each pupil set an age specific paper to challenge the most able to their limit. The day ended with the custard mini rocket challenge. The team had to prepare a mini rocket to launch and after a practise launch the teams were up against each other to see whose rocket went the furthest. Oakhill’s Super Rocket shot past the others to claim first place and the coveted title of Rocket Challenge Winners 2020. In the end Lancaster Girls Grammar School were the Top of the Bench winners in a very tough but close competition. Well done to our fantastic team who really showed they could blast past the others!

Watch the winning rocket launch here.

Murder At Oakhill!

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Year 8 were greeted with a crime scene on their return to English on Monday morning, finding crime scene tape on the door and the outline of a body on the floor.  They have been told that the victim in the literary murder case was Victor Frankenstein, a local scientist, who appears to have been poisoned.

Year 8 have now started to work as investigators and journalists to hopefully solve this fiendish crime.  They will be learning about different types of non-fiction writing this half-term as they step closer to the solution.

RSPB Bronze Wild Challenge

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Reception have worked hard over the last term and have achieved their Bronze Wild Challenge from the RSPB.

They had to complete six activities during their forest school sessions including building a hedgehog house, a minibeast hunt, weather survey and composting.

We are all excited to move onto our silver award next.

Year 2 Visit The Post Office

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Year 2 have been writing letters to their mums and dads to say thank you for all their efforts in making their Christmas a good one.

They learned how to use the franking machine with Mrs Sutterby

and then walked into Whalley to hand their letters in to the man in the Post Office as franked letters cannot be put in an ordinary postbox.

It was also a great opportunity to look at the surroundings and what some of the different signs and symbols mean along the way. It made us laugh when some thought the three fishes represented the restaurant not the rivers! They also recognised things from last year when they went out and about in Year 1.

We really enjoyed our walk and hope our mums and dads enjoyed reading our letters.

Christmas Tie Competition

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Nothing gets you more in the Christmas spirit than a good Christmas tie… well that’s according to our very own tie connoisseur, Mr Lowry!

This month the boys and girls in Prep have had the opportunity to enter our Annual Student Council Christmas Competition by designing their very own Christmas tie. It seems they have all been busy getting their creative ideas together by using sequins, glue, sewing needles and even quality street wrappers!

Mrs Buttery had a tough time judging the competition as the standard was excellent, but in the end she chose three winners for there originality, Oakhill spirit and simplicity. Here are the winners with their ties, in first place is Spencer (Year 1), second place Jenson (Year 6) and third place Penelope (Year 1).

The money raised will be donated to our on going Eco Brick Project and will buy more benches and tables for our outdoor classroom.

Year Three Conquer The Romans

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With the end of a long term just around the corner it was time for the Year Three teacher to take a well earned back seat and let the pupils do the teaching for once! And so a teacher’s Christmas wish came true. Each member of Year Three chose a topic area about the Romans to complete a term’s history study topic.

Presentations ranged from Roman clothing, entertainment and schooling to farming, soldiers and buildings. The pupils spoke clearly, confidently and with knowledge and enthusiasm. The teacher rated it as ‘Outstanding!’

Las Posadas

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Year 2 pupils had a lot of fun commemorating the ancient Mexican tradition of Las Posadas yesterday.  This event consists of a procession through the streets of cities and towns, with children dressed as Mary and Joseph.  As they knock on the doors of local residents, they ask the question ¿Hay posada?, remembering the time when Mary and Joseph were looking for shelter so that Mary could give birth to Jesus.

Year 2 enjoyed reenacting this by walking from classroom to classroom, visiting all Oakhill pupils, from pre-school and prep through to seniors, asking for room.  They confidently introduced themselves in Spanish before asking the special question.  Teachers and pupils alike joined in by delivering the news ‘No hay posada’, until the children finally found refuge back in their own classroom.

Well done, Year 2.  We are very proud of the way you helped us all remember the true meaning of Christmas and prepare us for this very special time.

Beauty And The Beast

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Mrs Raho and Mrs Mousley took Year 9 on a class trip to Burnley Youth Theatre to see their classmate, Brodie performing in Beauty and the Beast.

It was a fantastic performance and we were very proud of Brodie, who played the part of Monsieur Pomme very well. The Youth Theatre is a very modern and professional set-up and were were highly impressed with the whole experience. Well done Brodie!

Flash Bang!

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It was all flashes and bangs for Year 7 last Monday when they attended the Royal Society of Chemistry’s Flash Bang Show at Bolton School. As always it was a chemical spectacle with colour changes, bright lights, smoking cauldrons and increasingly loud bangs with lots of interesting chemistry facts surrounding each reaction.

It certainly scaled up the reactions that the Year 7’s have been conducting over the last few weeks and I hope that this will inspire our pupils to become the Scientists of the future.

Running Club Trip To Gisburn Forest

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The Senior School running club enjoyed a Christmas adventure as they headed to Gisburn Forest this Wednesday.  As a treat for their commitment and excellent progress made this term, pupils enjoyed a 5 mile trail run around the forest, finishing with lunch, cake and hot chocolate in the cafe.

The Santa hats gave us some extra insulation on a very cold day!  The club meets every Wednesday lunchtime and pupils are taken on a variety of routes around Whalley by Mrs Raho, Mrs Mousley and Mr Peel.  Our members have showed excellent commitment since September and have developed their stamina, fitness, and enjoyment of running, and we are very proud of them all.

Some have even taken on their first parkrun, and enjoyed the Blackpool illuminations on our annual ‘Run the Lights’ trip.  We always welcome new members who are free to run, walk and progress at their own pace.  We also have a beginners running club on a Thursday.  We look forward to seeing our runners develop further in 2020 and also to see some new faces!

Festive Biscuits

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Year 5 were shown how to decorate festive biscuits by Saul’s mum and it wasn’t as easy as she made it look!

Nevertheless, it was great fun and very soon the table was filled with melting snowmen and Christmas baubles, as well as lots of other individual creations.

A big thank you to Saul’s mum for giving her time and sharing her skills with us!

Reflecting Upon Reflection

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Year Three had a most illuminating and reflective science lesson this week.

They tested out a range of reflective materials to see which would be best to be used on the design for a new school bag, so that they can be seen in the darkness of wintertime.

Two materials came out tops in their research and these will now be used to help the children as they make their new school bag.

Prep Student Council

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The Prep School Student Council were kept busy on their stall at the recent Christmas Fair, selling good quality books and toys.

Well done Scarlett from reception class who won the Name The Teddy competition. In all £182 was raised, which will go towards recycled tables and benches for the playground which can be used as an outdoor classroom… when the weather improves! Many thanks to everyone who supported this stall.

¡Feliz Navidad! Joyeux Noël!

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Preparations are in full swing for this year’s MFL Christmas Carol competition.  Prep have been having great fun in their French lessons preparing their entries.  We are looking forward to seeing the final recordings from pupils right across the school.

Christmas Banners

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Christmas arrived early in Prep as the children in Year 1 and 2 enjoyed designing a Christmas banner for a competition.

Lots of ideas and different thoughts were flying backwards and forwards but, as always at Oakhill, each child drew their own individual effort. The staff were amazed by their efforts and we have some budding artists among them. They are now eagerly waiting to see if their finished products made it! Fingers crossed.

Bebras Computing Challenge

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Pupils in years 6, 7, 8 and 10 entered into an on-line computational thinking skills competition, Bebras. Pupils from over 40 countries enter the annual competition. The pupils spent 40 minutes answering a series of challenging computational logic questions. Congratulations to pupils who achieved Best in Year and Distinction. A very special mention to Stefan in Year 7 who achieved a top 10% Bebras score in his age group. Stefan has been invited to enter 2020 Oxford Computing Challenge. We are all very proud of his achievement and wish him luck.

The Nativity

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An outstanding performance by preschool and pre prep in telling the story of ‘The Nativity’.

The children and the staff all worked extremely hard in putting the performance together and what a performance it was!

A huge thank you to everyone involved not to mention the parents who supported their little ones in practising their lines and songs at home with them, thank you.

Well that’s it for another year, it’s now time for the children to take a bow and enjoy the rest of the Christmas activities. Thank you.

Grandparents High Tea

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Prep pupils hosted their annual High Tea for grandparents and friends from the community this week. This popular event was attended by around 80 guests who were well looked after by the Year 5 and 6 pupils as they served sandwiches, scones and mince pies.

The children mingled and chatted with confidence, and helped find the answers to a fun Christmas movie quiz.

After tea, Year 5 performed some Christmas poetry together, Imogen recited a poem about the wonders of grandparents and Isabelle and Lottie told the tale of their Christmas Thank You Letters.

There was music too, with solo piano recitals from Max and Lottie and a selection of recorder tunes from the newly-formed Year 3 recorder group.

The Prep choir performed some Christmas songs, followed by a unique rendition of ‘Gran can you rap?’  by a group of Year 6 pupils. The afternoon was rounded off with ‘Love Shone Down’ sung by the Year 5 and 6 pupils together.

Love certainly did shine down as there were many smiling faces and proud grandparents who left, having enjoyed their afternoon, and many expressions of delight at how the children had been wonderful hosts.

Year 6 Visit Tatton Park

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Year 6 stepped back in time to visit Tatton Hall as part of their topic on World War ll. Dressed as an evacuee and equipped with gas masks, they enjoyed a day on the farm finding out what life was really like for child evacuees during the war.

The children were ‘billeted’ to Aunt May and her ‘Land Girl’ and got to experience first hand the harsh reality of life on the farm.

The children were shocked to discover the living conditions – no central heating, bed-sharing and chamber pots to name but a few of the realities of life in the 1940s.

The children, however, did get to feed the hens, goats and calves and take part in some fun wartime sing-a longs, baking and making Christmas decorations, which seemed to more than compensate for the ‘hard labour’ of the daily chores.




Modern Foreign Languages Christmas Card Competition

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Prep children have been excitedly working on their entries for the Modern Foreign Languages Christmas card competition.

They were challenged with designing a card which shows the Christmas traditions of another country. 

Pupils researched and designed their card using a variety of materials. Mrs Buttery certainly had a challenge choosing a winner as the standard of entry was extremely high.

Indeed, so high was the standard that she chose two winning entries – one from KS1 and one from KS2.

The delighted pupils were presented with their prizes and certificates in this week’s assembly.  Congratulations to Rebekah and Georgia in Year 6 who worked on their German design together, and to Olivia in Year 1 who produced a fantastic Spanish card.

French Connections

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Pupils in years 5 and 6 were very excited to receive recipes from their French pen-pals, based in our partner school in Rouen.  They had previously sent them recipes that they had composed in French, showing them their favourite typically English food.  They were fascinated by the specific style of French handwriting and the different choices of foods.  We are looking forward to exchanging letters with them again very soon.

Year Three’s Visitation

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Monday morning! Year Three paid a visit to Mrs Buttery. They shared their aspirations about what they want to be the best at. These ranged from gymnastics, model making and swimming to archery and history. Each pupil then shared their poem about the life of a flame on a candle. Mrs Buttery was impressed with their use of imagery and alliteration and by how clearly and confidently they read. A great morning’s work!

Year Two Quiz God!

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God, (in the bodily form of Archie) visited Year Two this week. The class had an opportunity to quiz him on what heaven is like. It was a truly heavenly lesson!!!

Periodic Table

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On Wednesday the whole school made a human Periodic Table from Reception to Year 11. Hoping our Moscovium will be used in the updated Chemistry World’s Element Song 🤞🤞
@oakhillcollege @ChemistryWorld @iypt2019

Click the link to watch the video https://youtu.be/Klay9hXALpE

Spanish Play

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Year 10 and 11 pupils were delighted to test their language ability when they went to watch a Spanish play this week. They followed the story of Maria and Carlos who were planning for a special outing together. The entertaining play was performed completely in Spanish and the pupils demonstrated their excellent comprehension skills throughout. They thoroughly enjoyed the experience and we are confident that this will spur them on with their Spanish studies.

Unlocking Your World And Your Career

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On Monday, senior school pupils welcomed Danila Datti, a representative from the School of Language and Global Studies at UCLAN.  She delivered an informative assembly entitled, Unlocking Your World and Your Career.  The presentation encouraged all pupils to consider how continued study of a Modern Foreign Language can make a tangible difference to career prospects and earning potential.  Danila provided key facts which were very thought-provoking.  Did you know that 75% of the world’s population speaks no English at all?  During the assembly, we discussed how there is an increased demand for languages from employers, how companies are losing trade because of language and cultural barriers, and considered the wide variety of careers where speaking a foreign language can make a real difference.

Thank you to Danila for her time and the wealth of information she shared with our pupils.  We hope that they are now inspired to see new opportunities for themselves in the future.