Year 7 News

Dear Parents and Students,

Angela Barnett 2018 (17) - Copy (640x640)

Angela Barnett

Head of Year

Students pay educational visit to UK’s favourite zoo

An educational visit to Chester Zoo has been summed up as “a great day out despite the torrential rain and soggy feet!” by organiser, Mrs Temelkovski.

Students from Year 10 and Year 7 attended special education workshops.  They were also delighted to meet Chester’s new giraffe calf, born to eleven-year-old mum, Orla.   The rare Rothschild calf was born just 24 hours prior to our students’ visit and caused quite a stir in the zoo and on social media; there are fewer than 2,650 remaining in the wild according to an Instagram post.

Year 10 students discover Chester’s ‘customer is king’ approach

Year 10 students listened to a talk regarding customer service at the zoo, where they learned all about the zoos ‘customer is king’ approach.  The zoo welcomes 1.9 million visitors to its 125-acre site every year and over 40% of customers are repeat-visitors.  Good service is key to this level of return.

It’s a highly successful strategy; in 2017 Chester was named as the best zoo in the UK and third best in the world by TripAdvisor.  Staff wear eye-catching uniforms and are trained to be highly approachable.

Chester is also aware that visitors who are well looked after also spend more money in the zoo’s cafes and gift shops, which pushing earnings higher and means more money can be channelled into the zoo’s numerous conservation projects.

Year 7 students discover the significance of evolution and adaptation  

Another group of twenty students from Year 7 attended an Evolution and Adaptations workshop to investigate how variations in genetic code react with habitats leads to some weird and wonderful adaptations.  So that’s why giraffes have such long necks!

Students then worked closely together to invent new animals which were highly adapted to their environments.  “I was really proud of how creative and enthusiastic our students were!” said Mrs Temelkovski.

Our verdict

“I love it when the penguins followed my hand when I placed it on the tank.”

“Great trip – I really enjoyed it!”

“The park was amazing, full of lots of different animals and attractions.”

“I’m still recovering from the smell of the bat house!”

Chester Zoo 2019 Collage (640x640)

Shoe Switching Fundraiser brings in the pounds for Lepra

High tops, loafers, pumps, flats, docs – or plain old trainers! – were some of the footwear worn to school by students in Year 7 on Switch Shoes Day.  Students paid one pound for a badge to signal they could wear their own shoes to school on Wednesday.  Each pound will go to Lepra, the year group’s chosen charity, to provide comfortable sandals for children suffering from leprosy.

Lots of other activities have been taking place too, including Guess the Name of the Teddy and numerous Bake Sales.  “We were surprised at just how many boys wanted to win the teddy!” exclaimed fundraisers, Pippa and Emily.

We’ll keep you posted on how much money has been raised, after our sponsored dance session for the whole year group, next week.

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Reading alert … New Year – New DEAR!

Drop And Read Day 2019 (800x400)

Drop Everything And Read (DEAR) is taking place during period 5 on Friday, 1st February.  This year we have developed the DEAR idea of community reading as follows.

Students in each year group and their class teacher will read the same short story:

Year 7 – Dream Daddy by Brian Martin;

Year 8 – The Watcher Society by Ellen Draper;

Year 9 – The Story of Blue Beard by Brigid McCauley;

Year 10 – Man from the South by Roald Dahl;

Year 11 – The Darkness Out There by Penelope Lively.

Also new for 2019 is the addition of a competition.

Those who have enjoyed reading the story can try one of the following tasks:

  • write a review of the story in under 100 words;
  • produce a biography on one side of A4 after carrying out research on the author;
  • write a short story that follows a similar theme in under 500 words;
  • produce a news report on your interview with one of the characters about their experience.

Competition entries can be posted in the competition box in the LRC by Friday, 8th February.

Prize winners will be announced at the end of half-term.  Good luck, everyone!!


Charitable gift-giving for Advent

Over the last month, our Focus Centre has been centre of operations for the Reverse Advent gift box initiative.

“Instead of taking something out, we are putting something in,” said organiser, Charlene Watson.

“This year we were able to deliver eight boxes packed with goodies to the Salvation Army in Brighouse.

Thank you to Jodie Ornatowski in 10E, George Exley in 7D Liam Fitzpatrick, who helped to deliver them on Thursday, and to everyone who contributed to the initiative.  The boxes will be distributed to those in need this Christmas.

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Sensational start to Rugby season!

It’s been a sensational start to the Rugby season at Brooksbank!

We are chuffed to bits with the way our young Year 7 rugby squad is shaping up!  They have produced two massive wins in their last two games, in pursuit of the Yorkshire Cup.

On Monday, 3rd December they beat rivals, Sirius Academy, 46 – 0!  “It was a brilliant team effort – and a ruthless defence,” beamed coach, Mr Ball.

On Wednesday 5th December, the youngsters backed this up with another emphatic win – this time against Freeston Academy.  An outstanding score of 48 – 0 has put Brooksbank into the Yorkshire Cup Semi-Finals.

In other rugby news, former Brooksbank students Tom Holroyd and Morgan Smithies are among the 22-man England Academy squad.  Congratulations, boys!

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Monsters, brides, schoolgirls and skeletons descend on Halloween Disco

It was scarcely dark when Year 7 students turned up in their blood-curdling best!   What a scare fest of hairy monsters, banshee brides, evil schoolgirls and scary skeletons!

A massive thank you to Sixth Form Business Studies students for putting together a brilliant mix of music, games and refreshments.

It’s hard to believe that these ghouls and ghosts only joined us in September!  There was a lot of posing and dancing, but best fun by far was mummy wrapping … it’s surprising how far a toilet roll can run!

Maddie Eastwood, winner of the English Brooker Prize, came as a dead dancer (not to be confused with dad dancer!) in a dance outfit, shredded specially for the occasion!  “It was an old one and all I needed to do was add some blood to make it halloween-y,” said Maddie.

“Our new Year 7s really threw themselves into the Halloween spirit,” laughed Business Studies teacher, Mrs Temelkovski as Mr Hepworth struggled to keep his poker face.  “The Halloween Disco is a great opportunity for new students to express themselves and have fun with their friends; it also allows older students to put their Business Studies acumen into action.”  Clearly a win-win situation!

Thank you to our Business Studies students who put a lot of hard work into ensuring our Year 7 students had the spookiest time ever.  Sales of sweets and drinks soared … it’s thirsty work scaring people!

BNT HAlloween Disco 2018 (30) (640x303)


Well done Maddie! Winner of the English Brooker Prize.

The influential Booker Prize is fifty years old next year and has brought much kudos to both novel and writer; did you know that Brooksbank awards its own reading prize?   Now in its eleventh successful year, Brooksbank’s Brooker Prize is a nod to its famous older brother and similarly aims to pick a best novel – one for the book shelf, and a useful Christmas stocking-filler if you need one.

The end of half term celebration is hosted by the English department in the LRC; it aims to develop a passion for reading among our youngest students.  Reading is the primary English focus for students in their first half term at Brooksbank, and Brooker adds new challenges of book promotion and public speaking.

The ten best recommendations are heard by a large crowd of attentive book lovers and you literally can hear a pin drop as presenters bravely stand up and speak.

This year’s Brooker Prize has been awarded to Maddie Eastwood in Form 7D.  Maddie chose to present Tom Gates by L Pichon, as her novel recommendation.  Maddie describes this richly illustrated read (which won the Blue Peter Award for Best Story) as, “Light-hearted and easy to read – which made me want to read it even more.”

As we all know, standing up and speaking to a large group of people takes some courage.  Maddie took it all in her stride however, “I was a bit shaky and never expected to win.  I was thrilled when I did, and couldn’t wait to go home and tell my mum the good news!”

In second place was Freddy Mitchell, also in 7D.  Kietyn Oglilvie in 7N came third, and Pippa Rules-Hazzard, also in 7N, won a prize for best effort.

Congratulations to everyone who took part in our Brooker Prize celebration for 2018.  Wonder which reader will win next year?

Year 7 Brooker Prize 2018 (2a) (640x317)


Holiday dates …..

  • Summer – Opens Tuesday 4th September 2018
  • Autumn Half Term – Closes: Friday 26th October 2018 / Opens: Monday 5th November 2018
  • Christmas – Closes:Friday 21st December 2018 / Opens: Monday 7th January 2019
  • February Half Term – Closes: Thursday 14th February 2019 / Opens: Monday 25th February 2019
  • Easter – Closes: Friday 12th April 2019 / Opens:  Monday 25th April 2019
  • May Day – Closed: Monday 6th May 2019
  • Spring Bank – Closes: Friday 24th May 2019 / Opens: Monday 3rd June 2019
  • Summer – Closes: Thursday 18th July 2019