02 Mar

What a week!! As you know, we only managed two days before the weather caused us serious problems on Wednesday when Oldham Council’s school transport service was unable to run. Although we stayed open for families who were able to reach us safely, as the weather deteriorated on Wednesday evening Mr Quinn had to make the very difficult decision to close all our sites on Thursday. Unfortunately conditions remained unsafe on Friday and we were unable to open.

While all this has been going on, however, our Year 13s have been up at the Calvert Trust in the Lake District where they have also seen PLENTY of snow! The weather didn’t stop them thoroughly enjoying themselves and we are very grateful to all the New Bridge and Calvert staff for providing activities and keeping everyone entertained when conditions were too bad to venture outside. The group set off home a little earlier than planned today because of the adverse weather and arrived safely back at New Bridge at lunch time – we would like to thank families for coming to collect the students early, we hope you all got home and warmed up quickly!

The New Bridge swimming department is delighted to announce that we have a new SUPER SWIMMER..

Congratulations to Rares who has earned his new title for helping Anisa to do ‘Happy Feet’ on the steps and for swimming without a woggle or ‘muscles’ (we are reliably informed that ‘muscles’ is the technical term for armbands in the New Bridge pool!)

Our swimming awards are also beginning, something all the pupils look forward to – when they complete their distance swim, a certificate is awarded. Everyone aspires to getting their name on the plaque and receiving a medal as well as the certificate but to do this, a 500 metre swim must be completed. We wonder who will be up to the challenge!

This week our Living Skills team have some work to share with you..

It has been as hectic as ever in the cooking rooms at New Bridge, Mrs Crook and Mrs Hickman’s feet have been on fire!! Here is just a brief glimpse of what we have been getting up to since we returned from the Christmas break. Year 7 have excelled themselves, demonstrating that they can behave safely and cleanly in the kitchen. In Year 7 we emphasise the importance of organisation and hygiene when preparing any dish in the hope that these habits will become part of their everyday practice, both at school and at home. They have continued to work on their knife skills, using sharp knives, peelers and graters and have learnt lots about where our food comes from and what goes into producing it..

Year 8 have been busy building confidence in the kitchen as they learn how to use the grill and the oven safely, producing some lovely tasty dishes along the way – the smell on the east corridor when they made tomato and basil pasta had staff following their noses right up to class! Miss Patchett’s class have also been learning how to use the hob safely..

Year 9 have been learning about fat and how much can be invisible in our foods; to illustrate this, they used margarine to measure out how much is hidden in some of our favourite foods! It’s scary viewing if, like Mrs Crook, you are a lover of mayonnaise..

They also built on their sensory vocabulary when they taste tested low fat and high fat versions of the same foods. This half term we will be turning our attention to sugar. 

Year 10 have been cooking up some lovely pasta dishes and have started to explore what goes into one of our favourite dishes. Mrs Crook is very much looking forward to sneaking into Mrs Hickman’s class next week to sample some of their Spaghetti Bolognese!

For our pathways, this term has been all about the food science, gluten to be specific. We have experimented with different flours to better understand why we use strong flour to make bread..

We have explored the conditions needed for yeast..

..and have learnt the hard way just how important it is to knead our dough….there were some sweaty brows in the room during bread week!

This term we have prepared a range of more complex dishes, making different pasta recipes. We have seen first-hand just how adaptable wheat flour can be as we made our own pasta from scratch, and a lovely tomato sauce to go with it (not bad for a double lesson!) It has been very messy and quite a challenge!!! We succeeded though and agreed that fresh pasta was better than dried pasta..

Pancake Day may have fallen within the half term holiday but we didn’t let that stop us..

As always, this is just a glimpse of what goes on in our kitchens – look out this week for leaflets coming home, it would be great to see how many of our families try out the ‘Change 4 Life’ family snack challenge!

Elsewhere in Living Skills, Year 8 have been learning how to sort laundry ready for washing by following the symbols on the labels..

 

Some Year 9 pupils have been studying ‘Safety in the Home’. They have been investigating how to use and store household products safely. They have looked at and discussed where to find information and what to do in an emergency..

Year 10 have been preparing for their topic ‘Come dine with me’ by choosing healthy food and pricing it up for their recipes..

In their work on careers, they have been looking at the housekeeping jobs that hotel workers might need to do..

In keeping with the week, this blog is also shorter than usual. We are looking forward to getting back to normal on Monday and bringing you a full report on Year 13’s Calvert adventures next time.

Don’t worry if you haven’t returned your Easter Holiday Club forms yet, the deadline for requesting a place for your child has been extended after this week’s closure and you still have time to send them in.

We hope you have a lovely (warmer) weekend,

Gavin and Dawn

For news on our Key Stage 5 pathway groups at Medtia Square please click here

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Click here to read this week’s news from Graham