Congratulations to Holly Harrison who was wonderfully persuasive, winning the most votes from the House, and succeeding in convicting Father!
About Suzanne McAuley
Posts by Suzanne McAuley:
This year was marked by a flourish of new debating talent within the school – after the departure of a very talented group of Upper Sixth debaters made way for a whole new wave of Speakers from Year 11 to Year 14! Reigning Queen (teacher-in-charge) of the Senior Debating Society, Miss Turner, spent her sophomore year at the heart of the Club, ensuring, through her passion for arguendo, that the year was a very successful one for all involved. This year I had the pleasure of assisting in the role of Student President, and I have to say that I thoroughly enjoyed my year at the helm of the Debating Society.
On Wednesday 22nd June 2016, five boys and five girls from Year 10 competed for the Jonathan Logue Public Speaking Cup. Each year, the standard is extremely high; however, this year it was exceptionally so, presenting the judges – two previous, and much missed, members of the English Department, Mrs Marion Hadden and Ms Hilary Timmons – with great difficulty in awarding the top three places.
On the 2nd of June, Year 9 pupils boarded the buses (where many McCandless seatbelts were put in place) and hit Ballycastle and The Causeway with a bang. Firstly we arrived at the Causeway and got into our form class groups and were handed out our booklets. After a quick toilet stop and a browse round the gift shop and information centre, we were soon ready for a long walk; or were we? We found out a variety of facts and historical events that never crossed our minds. There was a collection of monuments and rocks formed by geographical processes into shapes like a camel, organ, duck, boot and even old women! Promptly after that we ate a well-deserved packed lunch and took in the landscape. We learnt about rocks, formation, erosion and many other interesting geographical settings. One by one we boarded our buses and headed for Ballycastle. Each person had a group of three that they got into and started the trail on our designated spot. We walked round many places in Ballycastle and found out clues to fill in our booklets. Ballycastle was a lovely place we saw the beach, shops and other eye catching places. Overall Year 9 really enjoyed the trip and came home with a lot of new knowledge about a variety of topics, and something unusual for a June day-a little sunburn!
By Amy Woodall 9T
During our spring term all Year 8 classes had the delight of receiving a visit from Mr David Thomas who is a volunteer for Christian Aid. During this visit we focused on the earthquake in Haiti, how it occurred, the aftermath and what Christian Aid did to help the citizens of Haiti. Read More
Friday 15 April 2016 saw a team of four pupils from Year 10-12 set off, accompanied by Mr R Johnston and Mrs H Millar from the Chemistry Department, to compete in the UK National Finals of the RSC ‘Top of the Bench’ Competition being held at Loughborough University. Ellen Gilmour, Auriel Guarino (both Year 10), Sarah Hadden (Year 11) and Eason Chan (Year 12) had competed at the Regional finals of the competition held at Queens’ University Belfast in January where they were successful in winning the honour of representing Northern Ireland at the UK Finals. This was only the second time that the school had entered a team in this prestigious competition which is organised annually. Read More
What’s the first thing you think of when you hear “Geography Workshop?” Most likely you would not imagine making pyramids with toothpicks and marshmallows, would it? I didn’t know what to expect when we walked into the John Armstrong Hall to attend The Christian Aid Geography Workshop. There was the deafening sound of fifty teenagers, rumbling away like Mount Krakatoa on a bad day.
A few minutes later, a man walked in and explained that he represented Christian Aid, who specialises in helping developing countries who have a high degree of poverty. He then told us a very interesting story of a man who had been trapped in a collapsed office building for 2 HOURS after an earthquake hit his city. His resilience to survive was incredible. After this, the marshmallows and toothpicks came into play. He laid them out irregularly around the tables and challenged us to construct an earthquake- resistant structure with it. Our group decided to make a pyramid, which seemed like a good idea, as the pyramids at Giza seemed to have withstood the test of time pretty well. We were quite pleased when it survived the simulated earthquake (a shake of the table), without collapsing.
The Longitude Explorer Prize is an innovation competition, where innovation entries are based around the use of satellite data. I entered the competition shortly after it was announced in November 2014.
Since then, I have attended an induction day for the event at the Big Bang Fair in Birmingham, competed in the semi-finals at Techno-pop in Bristol, and finalized after a close round of judging, held at a Teen Tech event in Stratford, London. Needless to say, it has been quite a journey, and I think my concept design that I entered into the competition reflects that. My original concept was based on e-ink technology, but this was scrapped for an improved solution involving the Raspberry Pi (a small, educational computer) and an online website.
A team of four pupils, Ellen Gilmour, Auriel Guarino (both Year 10), Sarah Hadden (Year 11) and Eason Chan (Year 12) travelled to Belfast to participate in the regional finals of the prestigious Royal Society of Chemistry competition ‘Top of the Bench’ where they emerged victorious. The pupils had to complete a practical task in the laboratory which demonstrated their team work and problem solving abilities before enduring two different rounds of questioning which tested the content of the GCSE specification and their general chemistry knowledge. Congratulations on being not just top of the class but top of the bench! The team received individual prizes and will now represent Northern Ireland at the UK National finals in Loughborough University on Saturday 16th April 2016. Mark Collins, Chair of the RSC Local Section who organised the heats, described the team as consistently excellent throughout the night and worthy winners! We wish the team every success as they prepare for the finals of the competition.