This term the school has been looking at the theme 19th Century and will be linking with other subjects promoting a cross curricular work ethic.
In this term we have been looking at 19th Century art, covering a number of artists careers and their work. We have been looking at traditional 19th Century paints, colours and paint techniques, we also looked at Art movements throughout the centuries. We delved into the world of Vincent Van Gogh, recreating his famous 'Starry Night' painting using a number of mediums, we then looked at Gustav Klimt who was well known for his rich golden pattern work and his love of elegant figures, creating our own rich and sparkling pieces.. We then moved onto an artist who was born in the 19th century but started painting in the early 20th century, called Wassily Kandinsky. Kandinsky modernised the way we look at a composition, painting shape and movement, using colour as an expression of mood. We created pieces that were inspired by Kandinsky's style experimenting with different mediums.
Wassily Kandinsky 'A Starry Night' by Vincent Van Gogh Gustav Klimt
This term our students have been looking at traditional 19th Century wooden toys, we researched into popular wooden creations, and decided that the traditional wooden hobby horse was very popular and would be an interesting item to make for a young child, at present the pupils have created the wooden heads and are working on the connecting pole which joins the head to the wheels.
This term the maths lessons with Mr Ayodeji have looked at how through the centuries civilisations have traded, looking at a time before money, where stock, labour and farming became a currency to buy land and goods. The groups then looked at the introduction of money, studying notes and coins, the pupils then designed their own bank notes, looking at the importance of trading and wealth in society for 19th Century.
In English we have began the term by looking at Education in the 1900s and how it has evolved to what we know as our schools today. In doing so we have examined how the Victorians used to live and treat young people and have learned why schools have become such important places. It has been shocking to discover how young people had to work in some very dangerous roles and why child mortality rates were so high. Perhaps what has been more concerning is the fact that there are parts of the world where a similar plight for young people still exits. It has made us think twice about buying cheap clothes and to question the profits of huge companies such as Nike and Adidas.
This term we are looking at some of the works of Charles Dickens and William Blake who recorded in their writings the harshness of being poor and uneducated. We are examining what lessons have been learnt, and looking more closely at the things that haven’t really changed. Poverty is still an ongoing problem in this country: zero hour contracts perhaps contributing to the rapid growth of food banks in recent times.
One positive however has been improvements in Education, where children by law, are given not just a chance academically but a safe place to be all day. There are many agencies available to protect our young people and give them the best start. Reading Oliver Twist has given us a good insight into how cruelly young people were treated. Reading David Copperfield has given us an idea of how young people were treated in school leading us to discuss sanctions and corporal punishment.
Charles Dickens and William Blake- A poison Tree
Last Term's Collaboration- Wealth:
Last term the school took a look at themed projects that linked together within KS3, encouraging more collaboration between the subjects and the sharing of ideas and resources. We worked with the theme 'wealth' this term which can be translated in so many ways.
Art started by looking into wealth through royalty, jewels and status symbols, they looked at the use of family coat of arms and designed their own personalised versions, they then finished the term with a golden tribute to Ancient Egypt, making death masks, glittering hieroglyphic tablets and portraits of the gods.
Design and Technology has been looking into profit and upselling, creating wealth through enterprise, students have been making individual county style coat hooks for a hallway in a house. These are going to be sold and the pupils will work out how much the materials and finishes cost and deduct that from the final amount of money raised. This will give them a good understanding of manufacturing costs as well as a clear knowledge of profit and loss.
In our English lessons we have been looking at the meaning of wealth. We have discussed four types of wealth:
Wealth of experience-to have lots of knowledge;
Wealth of health-to be very healthy and looking after your body;
Having a Wealthy heart- to be kind and generous;
Material wealth-to be financially well off.
Most of us decided that financial wealth isn't the most important within the list.
We have started our class reader-Millions by Frank Cottrell Boyce, and learned about money and different currencies as the plot is based around the British pound sterling changing to the Euro. So far in the story, we have met Damian and his brother Anthony who have recently lost their mum. Damian is finding life without her quite a struggle and believes she is with the Saints in heaven. We have researched some Saints, particularly of our own namesakes, and discovered some strange things that Saints did, such as mortification and martyrdom!
In addition, we have dreamed about being fabulously wealthy and the power that brings. Due to the recent events of Sam Allardyce and Philip Green, we have also discussed greed, fraud and selfishness.
We are presently designing our own fantasy bedrooms. This is in light of Damian creating his own Hermitage out of the cardboard boxes his mum's clothes were stored in and his wish to live a simpler life, in the hope he will become more Saintly.
Finally we have enjoyed singing along to and analysing the meaning of Abba's "Money, Money, Money", Pink Floyd's "Money" and Jessie J's" Price Tag"!