Gateshead Food Bank Donation

Joseph Swan Academy’s Student Leadership Team took the lead on organising the “Reverse Advent Calendar Challenge” over the Christmas period. The aim behind this initiative was for students to work collaboratively in order to give something to others, instead of receiving something themselves during each day of Advent.

Every student from each tutor group in Years 7 to 11 contributed towards this challenge by bringing in an item of food to donate to Gateshead Food Bank. This meant that over 50 boxes were packed with food from our students’ donations!

The Student Leadership Team then packed the food boxes onto the Academy’s minibus and helped to deliver these supplies to the local Food Bank. The staff at the food bank were overwhelmed by the kindness of our JSA students and were astonished to find that we had in fact donated 371.20 kg of food to the cause! They said that this would help to feed many Gateshead families in need, “Well into the New Year”.

Year 9 Christmas Rewards Disco

Over 60 Year 9 students celebrated their half termly successes with a disco in the Main Hall. Students had to have earned 800 points this half term to be eligible to go. The afternoon was a very enjoyable one. Everyone danced and sang their hearts out: we got right into the Christmas spirit! There were games and prizes to be won and we even had a dance rendition from our very own Steps fan in Year 9. What a fantastic event. It is times like these when I feel like the luckiest Head of Year ever! I think I’m definitely on the nice list now that the students had such a great time!

Year 9 3K Fun Run

Year 9 were asked to devise an activity for Children in Need to fund raise for the day. They chose to complete a 3K fun run (which we called “Chase Pudsey!”) led by our very own Pudsey Bear (also known as the very amenable Mr Kenyon!).

After an energetic warm up the group were off! It wasn’t an easy course: there were a lot of hills to contend with, but they all managed it.

I could not be more proud of these young people. Not only did they create the event themselves, but they ran their hearts out and made Pudsey one very tired bear!

Well done Year 9 for all of your hard work on this event.

Remembering with Respect in Year 9

Year 9 took on the challenge of creating a ‘big art’ project to commemorate Remembrance Day. Our nine tutor groups each had one aspect of the project to complete as a team. The event was time restricted, adding another element of challenge for students. Each tutor group played their part fantastically well, putting in a lot of effort at the same time as respecting the significance of Remembrance.

This is our finished artwork which is proudly displayed on our Academy’s Street. I’m sure you will agree that Year 9 did a wonderful job and did themselves and Joseph Swan Academy proud!

Bring It On Engineering Event

On Tuesday 3rd October I and eight other Year 9 students attended the “Bring It On Engineering Event” at Sunderland’s Stadium of Light. The visit was led by Mr Hodgson, one of the Technology teachers here at Joseph Swan Academy.

We had a great day, learning all about different types of engineering and the kinds of jobs that we could possibly get in this field when we leave school. There were interactive games and there were also virtual reality engineering experiences where we could practise our engineering skills. We could even drive tractors and trains! We also learned about how energy is produced and a lot of other amazing facts linked to engineering.

It was really interesting to talk to engineers of all ages on the visit. We found out what they liked about their jobs and what they did on a day to day basis at work. All of us loved the experience and we were given free pens, pencils and other equipment from the stalls. There were tons of sweets that they gave out too so we were all really happy about that! Special thanks to Mr Hodgson and the Academy’s Technology Department for allowing us to have this fabulous experience.

Rosie G
Year 9

Year 9 Visit to Newcastle Library

On 13th July, five eager Year 9 students got ready to explore what Newcastle University Library had to offer. On entering the library, the students and staff were all amazed by the sheer size but were quickly taken to the education centre.

During the morning students spent time looking at some of the oldest books the library had to offer, touching letters that Henry VIII himself wrote, and tracing a finger over Queen Victoria’s signature. Students then saw news articles written 200 years ago about the outbreak of cholera in Gateshead.

Students broke into teams and drew pictures of a body that they then had to add symptoms of cholera to – both teams did fantastically well, with the competition ending in a draw. Students then had to design their own medicine to combat cholera and present their ideas to the rest of the group, with a winner being voted for (well done Mrs Threadgall!).

Students then had the opportunity to explore the library, getting to see the vast expanse of resources it holds, seeing the different working areas, and even managing to stay silent across floors 3 and 4; the silent work areas!

After this tour, students were back in the education centre and another competition entitled ‘Pipes and Sewers’ (a version of snakes and ladders which included facts about the cholera outbreak) started. Students loved the game, and didn’t want it to end, but time was almost up and they moved on to the final quiz of the day, where all students managed to answer the question in order to ‘Save Granny’ from the outbreak of cholera.

Overall the day was fantastic, and everyone came away having learnt something new!

Beach Rewards Trip

On 7th July 2017, 32 students and 6 members of staff piled onto a coach heading for the coast.  After the week of terrible weather, our bags were stuffed full of extra layers and rain coats, and the outlook for staying dry was not optimistic.

However, once we landed on Marsden beach, everyone’s first thought was to get changed into shorts as the day was muggy and warm.  The day absolutely flew by with some students playing football and rounders, others creating huge sand forts, and others choosing to sit and relax while making stone sculptures or making bracelets with Mrs Pennock.

The weather stayed so nice some students even decided to dip their feet in the freezing North Sea! The day was rounded off with ice cream on the cliff top and a very sleepy bus ride home.

A very well done to all involved, all students were a shining example for the Academy (though Mr Sword did manage to drip ice cream everywhere…).

Year 8 and Year 9 this Academic Year

Dear Parent/Carer

I am very proud to write to you about our Year 8 and 9 students and their experiences this year. The end of the year is approaching and very soon we will be calling your child a Year 9 or 10 student.

Mrs Peverley (Year Leader) will be taking the students into Year 9 and will be joined by Mrs Goddard (Home School Liaison Assistant) who has already started working with the Year Group.

Mrs Beeckmans (Year Leader) and Miss Forster (Home School Liaison Assistant) will be taking the students into Year 10.

As Year Groups they have given themselves a superb grounding for the next stage of their education. I would like to take this opportunity to share with you just some of the highlights this year:

  • he keenness and amazing engagement of students in our very first student ‘training day’ way back at the beginning of September
  • Our progress evenings, in December and recently in May and June, where it was lovely to see such a huge turnout of families, keen to meet our tutors and teaching staff to discuss the progress of their child
  • Our Remembrance Respect Day in November, where the students were impeccably behaved and respectful during a variety of assemblies, services and workshops. Students in KS3 alone managed to raise over £4,000 for the ‘Poppy Appeal’ during a very well supported sponsored silence event
  • The enthusiasm shown by students towards our Christmas festivities, including our carol concert, Christmas Jumper Day and our Year Group Christmas lunches
  • The students support for all of our SMSC days throughout the year, including our Heart 2 Heart day, where every student completed basic first aid training and out inventors and inventions day, where each tutor group competed to support their chosen inventor
  • Numerous successful higher education events that many of our students attended, when both Universities came to visit us and we took students to the Universities for the day
  • The Night at the Museum event, where some students from year 8 were lucky enough to camp out overnight in the Great North Museum
  • The success of both boys and girls sports teams across a number of sports, including Football and Basketball
  • The amazing commitment shown by girls who trained and performed in the Gateshead Dance Festival
  • The students from both years who have committed to the Sports Leaders training programme, many of which have achieved their level 1 qualification and in the process have supported in a variety of different events, including the ‘Glynwood Games’ and Kells Lane Sports Day
  • Holocaust memorial day, where Year 9 were involved in working with guests to produce a stunning art installation that can be seen displayed in our main reception area
  • The maturity shown by Year 9, whilst embracing the process of option choices for GCSE courses
  • The students who visited the Houses of Parliament
  • The students who represented us superbly at Gateshead stadium in our regional athletics competition
  • The huge number of students who have achieved record breaking merit points and rewards throughout the year. This includes a group of students who have now achieved 4200+ points so far this year and have been the first to gain the brand new Head Teacher’s Award Badge
  • The huge number of Year 8 and 9 students who supported a wide range of charity events throughout the year, including those who gave up their weekend to run in the Children’s Cancer Run

There are still plenty of things to keep our students busy until the end of term. They can look forward to:

  • Our Reward Day for top point holders on Saturday 8th July. This will be taking place in the Academy and replaces the visit to Lightwater Valley. This free event will have music and entertainment and be a real celebration of the Year successes.
  • Our Year group days on Tuesday 11th July for Year 9 and Wednesday 12th July for Year 8. I know that both days will inspire our students.
  • Our ‘All Together’ games on Monday 17th – Tuesday 18th July will give our students the opportunity to show their athleticism and dedication to doing their absolute best
    I would like to take this opportunity to add my personal thanks, to you as parents and carers of our year 8 and 9 student’s, for all the fantastic support we have received from you this year.

This year, has seen our Year 8 and Year 9 students truly embrace the ethos of ‘Where Everyone Can Shine’. I look forward to watching their development and growth as they move on in the Academy.

Yours faithfully

Mr C Bland
Academy Leadership Team

North of England Children’s Cancer Run

On Sunday 21st May, a group of students represented Joseph Swan Acadmey at the North of England Children’s Cancer Run at Gosforth Park. It was a lovely day, great atmosphere and everyone was in very high spirits. On the day there were over 9,000 runners, with many other activities there.

This was the 35th Anniversary for the event and was focused on being an “everyday hero” and running to beat childhood cancer. This is a fantastic charity and raising money in order to increase the number of children cured of cancer, improve chemotherapy, to make treatment less distressing, to individualise treatments, find causes to childhood cancer and develop new treatments. To date they have raised across the 35 years over £30 million.

We had a wonderful group of students from across Years 7 – 10 contribute to this brilliant charity, they had the option of running 3 or 5 miles to raise money. The students were just fantastic and really embraced the moment – to date the students have raised through sponsorship alone a phenomenal £1,182.14 and this is continuing to grow.

Joseph Swan Academy is so proud of every single student who ran, they were so pleased with themselves and their acheivements. Thank you to every single one of you and the parents and carers who supported the morning’s events.

I am really looking forward to taking part in this event in the future

Well done and thank you

Miss Wilkinson

Girls In Engineering Event

Girls in Engineering 1A group of girls from Year 9 and Year 10 recently visited Teesside University to take part in a “Girls Into Engineering” activity day. The day started with an inspirational presentation from Nuria Manuel, a young chemical engineer working in a local company. She gave the girls a real insight into the benefits of being a woman in modern engineering.

The girls then took part in a range of Engineering activities including building bridges and creating new healthy energy drinks in a chemical engineering lab. I know the girls all had a good day and really enjoyed the university experience. I hope that some of them may have been inspired to consider a future career in engineering.

Girls in Engineering 2The girls’ enthusiasm was fantastic throughout the entire visit and they were a credit to the academy.

Mr G. Hodgson