After a fantastic year, myself and a number of Year 7 students wanted to share with you our highlights from this academic year. It has been a busy one for our Year 7s; we began the year by adjusting and adapting to the challenges of secondary school, we have represented the school in several sporting fixtures and tournaments and we have ventured to London and explored the British Science Museum.
Our Year 7s really have thrown themselves into a wealth of opportunities. They have had a brilliant year so far and I am incredibly excited to see what they bring to Year 8.
Our Year 7 Newsletter Team have worked incredibly hard to help me put this together. Within the newsletter, you will find messages from some of our Directors of Learning, information about what students have been learning this year and reviews of our range of recent trips.
We hope you enjoy reading!
Miss Wright & The Year 7 Newsletter Team
This year, Year 7 have been working on the following units in English:
At the very start of the year, the students went on a journey through time, examining the presentation of literary villains throughout history and then bringing this knowledge together in their class reader.
In the Spring Term, Year 7 studied a play called 'Free', about a group of students left alone in a classroom. The students really brought the play and characters to life with their enthusiastic reading and performances. They also looked at non-fiction across time, and wrote their own persuasive speeches on who should run the school: students or teachers.
This term, Year 7 have been doing a fantasy genre study. They have read extracts from a range of seminal fantasy texts, and practised their literary analytical skills on Neil Gaiman's 'Coraline'. They have been writing the opening of their very own fantasy story, and will be creating poetry on their invented mythical creatures.
Over the course of the year, Year 7 have thrown themselves into all aspects of English, immersing themselves in each and every world that they have visited, sharpening their analysis and stretching their imaginations. We can't wait to see what they do in Year 8!
If your child would like to delve deeper into the world of fantasy, whilst developing their reading skills, we recommend choosing a book from our Fantasy Reading List:
Seraphina by Rachel Hartman
Furthermore by Tahereh Mafi
The Golden Compass by Phillip Pullman
Eragon: The Inheritance Cycle by Christopher Paolini
The Last Kids on Earth by Max Brallier
The Wizards of Once by Cressida Cowell
Inkheart by Cornelia Funke
If your child would like to prepare for their first unit in Year 8 (Gritty Realism), whilst developing their understanding of social issues, we recommend choosing a book from our Contemporary Fiction Reading List:
Refugee Boy – Benjamin Zephaniah
Buddy – Nigel Hinton
Boys Don’t Cry – Malorie Blackman
The Outsiders – S.E. Hinton
Ghost Boys – Jewell Parker Rhodes
Killing Honour – Bally Rai
Boy, Everywhere – A. M. Dassu
The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time – Mark Haddon
If you would like to support your child with their core English skills, we recommend visiting the following websites:
Mrs Lavender – Director of Learning for English
Messages from our students about English:
I enjoyed English because I get to use my imagination. I especially enjoyed doing Coraline because there were so many twists. I also enjoyed English because we started writing a fantasy story and we get to decide a lot of the story. I love the teachers as well they always understand me if I need help. Eden I
I enjoyed the book/film Holes because it’s very unique. It’s set in a wasteland type area just like a prison and shows what it is like to be in a strict camp just like a prison. The change of characters emotions is another thing I really enjoyed. Josh B
Free was an interactive topic and I really enjoyed playing the role of a character. It helps people’s confidence of reading out loud and they can improve their vocabulary. It was a new experience with a script than just writing in a book. It was a fun activity that I enjoyed and I think others would find it interesting to have a role in a play. Zack L
This year in English I’ve enjoyed doing ‘Free’ because I enjoyed how we all had a character and it was really funny. I also liked how it was interactive. We also got to write about how the characters acted towards others and it was quite creative and really enjoyable. I also liked how it was set in a school and the students were our age, so you could relate to some of the content. Fearne P
This year, students have been learning the following topics in mathematics:
They have learned where they will see negative numbers in real life, such as temperatures and finances, and how to do calculations with them.
They have learned how to plot and read coordinates in all four quadrants of the coordinate grid, and how we can use algebra to describe all of the points on a line.
Area and perimeter
They have learned what how to find the area and perimeter of various triangles and quadrilaterals, as well as of compound shapes made up of these.
Units of measure
They have learned how to convert between different currencies as well as common units for length, volume, and mass.
Angles and symmetry
They have learned about the relationships between angles in different shapes, as well as properties such as rotational and line symmetry.
Representing and interpreting data
They have learned how to represent data using graphs and charts, and how to analyse it using averages and the range
They have learned how to describe something that is limited in the values it takes by using algebraic inequalities, and how to represent these on a number line.
Throughout all of these topics, there has been a focus on investigation and problem solving. Rather than just telling students how to do these things, it is important that they investigate themselves to get a deeper understanding of how each topic can be used to solve a variety of problems.
If your child would like to review any of the learning they have done this year, all students have access to the following website where is a video and quiz for every topic they will have learnt this year, and even a button they can press if they get stuck on a question. They should be familiar with using this, as it is the site that they use for homework: Hegarty Maths
Our involvement in Mathematics has extended beyond the classroom. I would like to wish the following students a huge congratulations for achieving their Bronze certificate in the Junior Maths Challenge this year: Hidaya A, Daniel B, Blador C, Aakash C, Bianka C, Ketsia A, Heidi K, Molly L, Abbie M, Issy M.
Mr Tibke – Director of Learning for Mathematics
What a fantastic year of Science for Year 7! They have visited the British Science Museum in London, been involved in the Science Club and British Science Week, all whilst getting to grips with being in secondary school and proper science laboratories.
It has been a steep learning curve however Year 7 have been up for the challenge. We have covered many topics and skills over the last year through problem solving and practical science, whilst linking these to real life and other subjects such as maths, geography, art, history and many more. The topics we have been learning about include:
Introduction to the Periodic Table
The Human body
Mixtures and Separation Techniques
The Particle Model
Muscles and Bones
Food and Nutrition
Earth and Space
If your child would like to review any of the learning they have done this year the following links to websites are useful:
Revision guides and workbooks can also be found on amazon or through the CGP website directly: CGP Revision Books
In Year 8 we will be starting the Autumn term on the following topics therefore students may wish to read ahead to prepare themselves for the next topics in the amazing world of Science:
Acids and Alkalis
Light and Sound
Properties of Metals
We are looking forward to seeing those curious budding scientists next year!
Miss S Willis – Director of Learning for Science
Messages from our students about Science:
In Science we do different experiments to memorise information or to understand information. We have also been doing a fair bit of writing for revision. Every Science lesson is fun as we always get to test out new things. The teachers always create different ways to have a fun informative lesson. Aariz F
Our contributors wanted to share what they have been learning about in Year 7 and some of their favourite lessons of the year.
I love many subjects such as PE, Art, Drama and Food Technology. The reasons I like these subjects is because I like the way I can express myself in them. Not only do I get to learn, but I also get to show my creative and sporty sides. I also like lessons like English and Geography because I find Geography interesting, and I love the way I can express my emotions and self in the writing I produce in English. Evie B
In Music we get lots of different chances to do different things. This year we have focused on drums, the keyboard, African singing, and the ukulele. These all have different backgrounds – we don’t just learn about the instruments but also the culture and their background. Eden I
In History we have been learning about different leaders and famous battles that changed the way England is today. The teachers have been really helpful and kind, when I am learning they make sure to make information clear to everyone whilst learning a topic. We do some reading in the lessons to get more information and more of an in depth review of the topic. I was not really fascinated by History before coming to RFSS, however now it is one of my favourite topics as the teachers engage you in different information you did not know. Aariz F
In Geography Year 7 have been learning the different types of plate boundaries. A conservative plate boundary is when two plates move past each other causing friction to build up then, once friction is released, this results in an earthquake. A destructive plate boundary is where one plate subducts under the other (for example the Pacific plate meeting the Eurasian plate) causing a volcano to form. Constructive plate boundary is where the two plates move away from each other creating an earthquake and a trench. We have also done little side topics like the slums in Rio de Janeiro (Brazil), coordinates and studying OS maps. Overall, I love this subject and can't wait to study it at GCSE. Freddie G
In Food Technology you get to have a bit of independence In the kitchen yet still have fun. We make a range of different foods such as fruit crumble, pasta bake and much more. Sophie H
Our Year 7s have embraced the opportunity to enrich themselves and attend our extra-curricular clubs. This half term, several students prepared presentations about their enrichment clubs which they presented to the entire year group. This was a fantastic opportunity for them to develop their public speaking whilst also encouraging engagement in enrichment clubs and opportunities. Well done to them!
In school we have had a lot of different matches against different schools in tournaments. We have different clubs after school such as football in winter and cricket in the summer. The teachers try to encourage the class to participate in as many sports fixtures as they can. I played in some matches for cricket and I had a great experience. We played against different schools and did our best. Most importantly the teachers help us improve our skills when we are not doing something correctly. Aariz F
I have been to two Cricket Fixtures at Houlton School & Lawrence Sheriff School. I really enjoyed my experience as we had many friends with us on the mini bus and we got to represent the school by playing a sport for RFSS. I had a great experience and we were treated really well and I enjoyed the game and practicing for the match. Aakash C
Netball is fun because it gives you a sense of belonging as you are in a team with 6 other players. I enjoy Netball because it is fun and energetic and gives you good reflexes. You get to meet new people and make new friends. You also get to compete against other schools. Sophie H
Dance club is great! You get to make many new, kind friends. Everyone is so welcoming and makes you feel like you belong straight away. It also helps you with confidence as a whole and confidence in yourself. If you like to dance or you are passionate about it, then it’s a great way to be who you are at school around people how like it as well and will not judge you for it. Evie B
I go to music clubs because they help me relax, they are super fun and you get to learn something new. In orchestra we play an instrument that you already know how to play and we learn new songs together. In ukulele club we learn how to play the ukulele and learn different songs. In choir we sing songs and perform in various concerts. The concerts involve the orchestra, ukulele club, choir and also solos/duets. There is also sometimes dance and drama. There are many different music opportunities. Eden I
History Trip to Bosworth Battlefield
The history trip to the Battle of Bosworth field was so much fun! We got to learn about so much, and it was made fun by doing so many different activities. We got to see and feel all the different weapons and armour; we also got to learn how to use some of the weapons. All together it was a great experience. Evie B
We went to Bosworth Battlefield where Henry Tudor defeated Richard III (The King at the time) which caused a big change in England. The trip was quite fun with a lot of activities too, such as wearing armour from different battles. Also we got to see a lot of weapons that the people in the battle would have used. We were taught what place the battle actually happened and who would be fighting for which side. Aariz F
Festival on the Close
The festival on the close was great fun! We got to do so many different things, like, in science we watched balloons be set on fire and explode. We also got to smell different sorts of chemicals that resembled foods. In drama we played some drama games and got to put together a short scene. We also did sports where we played football. In engineering our teamwork was tested because we were put into teams and we had to see who could build the strongest bridge. At lunch we also got to watch Michael Rosen perform. Evie B
Over the past few weeks, a select group of students were able to work with Rugby school in a project on a Russian fairy-tale; Peter and the Wolf by Sergei Prokofiev. They held rehearsals every Wednesday and eventually performed alongside Michael Rosen at the Festival on the Close. Molly L
The partnership between RFSS and Rugby School was an amazing an educational experience. All of the Wednesday sessions were extremely exciting and we all learned so much and our confidence grew loads in the build-up to the performance. The day of the performance was fun; we rehearsed our play with our amazing props for the first time and everyone did an excellent job adjusting to the changes and so did the staff. We all had an excellent time! Pippa C
Luke S, Pippa C, Molly L, Aariz F, Freddie G, Eden I, Evie B, Sophie H, Aakash C