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Thirsk School

& Sixth Form College

    Pastoral Enrichment Day 30th September 2014

    This day was planned with a pastoral focus as a creative opportunity to push all our students to aim high.

    Students split into upper school and lower school and worked in their form groups on activities to build on their individual strengths and potential. They then used these strengths to work together on a number of different team activities.

    The activities, some of which were provided by local organisations such as Rural Arts, Thirsk Clock, Connecting Youth Culture (CYC) and Carlton Lodge, gave students an opportunity to be physical and creative and to learn whilst having fun.



    Students designed and created a tile that represented something important about themselves - themes ranged from a family pet to playing badminton, to one student who chose a penguin design simply because they loved penguins!



    Street Dance

    This session, run by CYC, saw the students learn a street dance routine from scratch, which they then performed at the end. The group quickly picked up the moves and worked well as a team to produce a dynamic street dance. The session included learning about the different muscles they were using and how to create resistance against their own muscles when dancing. 




    Another creative activity run by Rural arts, this time students worked together to produce on large piece of work - a colourful banner representing themselves and their interests. One student said, 'I'm excited about this - I like art and it's a chance to be together and show off our skills.'



    On the Astro Turf in the sunshine, Mr Campbell was working with 7 Aldred. The pupils were  split into three groups playing hockey, football and Frisbee. It was the perfect day for it, and in the words of one pupil, the session was ‘better than brilliant’.


    Tutor Group Challenge

    Upper School students took part in a number of team challenges, including a quiz and more creative challenges such as "The Shard Challenge": students were challenged to build the tallest self-supporting tower out of 10 pieces of paper and 2 strips of sellotape. The tower needed to stay standing with a 2p coin balanced on the top. Students enjoyed the challenge finding a range of different engineering solutions.

    One Year 11 student said of the quiz, 'I really enjoyed it - the range of questions meant everyone could take part, whatever their interests.' Others commented on how much fun it had been mixing with other students in their year and working with people they did not normally have chance to be with.

    The focus of the day for Upper School was on planning positively for the future. One student said, 'I know now what I need to do to succeed.'


    This session was run by Mr Pierce-Williams in the Music department. On entering the room we were surprised to see the group sitting on the floor with a room full of upturned chairs in front of them. We were even more surprised when they began using the bottoms of the chairs as drums, occasionally also beating the chair legs to create a different sound. As you can see from the video below, the effect was spectacular, with the whole group keeping time perfectly, assisted only by the teacher’s whistle! Students said, ‘It’s brilliant, really good fun and also imaginative.’

    Team Together

    The session, run by Carlton Lodge, included a number of outdoor team building activities. All the activities included a challenge, such as squeezing a group of five students through a small rope hoop in the shortest time possible. The group we spoke to managed it in a gobsmacking 3.01 seconds. ‘That was amazing,’ said one of them.
    Another group worked together to lift a heavy object from the ground using only ropes. After a lot of hard work and a great team effort, they finally succeeded. ‘It’s good to do it as a team,’ one of the girls said. ‘It’s hard but it’s funny and even though we keep failing we’re still enjoying it!’



    The challenge for this session was to write and record a song in an hour. In small groups students brainstormed their favourite words, interesting words, or words that meant something to them. This produced an interesting mix, with words including Tesco, Banter, Selfie, Owls¸ Friends, PS3, Convo and Deershed...
    Amazingly, within the hour the group had written and recorded a full song, complete with rhyme, verse and chorus.  
    Go to the Podcast link at the bottom of the page to listen to the finished result.



    Streetdance with a twist! The group put together a choreographed cheer, based on American cheer leading, complete with shiny pom-poms. This was a really popular session, although one of the male students did describe it as 'not fun'!