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News@Com News@Com The The News News Magazine Magazine of of Comberton Comberton Village Village College College



COMBERTON COMBERTON Village Village College College will will be 50 years old in 2010. be 50 years old in 2010.

HONOURED: Executive Principal Stephen Munday. HONOURED: Executive Principal Stephen Munday.

Honour Honour is is for for ‘whole ‘whole college college community’ community’

STEPHEN Munday, Executive Principal of STEPHEN Munday, Executive Principal of Comberton, was presented with an honorary Comberton, was presented with an honorary Doctorate of Education by Prof Mike Thorne, Vice Doctorate of Education by Prof Mike Thorne, Vice Chancellor of Anglia Ruskin University, last month. Chancellor of Anglia Ruskin University, last month. The ceremony took place at the Corn Exchange in The ceremony took place at the Corn Exchange in Cambridge with many recently graduated students Cambridge with many recently graduated students from Anglia Ruskin receiving their degrees. from Anglia Ruskin receiving their degrees. The honorary award was given for ‘services to educaThe honorary award was given for ‘services to education’, most specifically for overseeing Comberton tion’, most specifically for overseeing Comberton Village College in becoming ‘one of the most successVillage College in becoming ‘one of the most successful schools of its type in the East of England’. ful schools of its type in the East of England’. Mr (or Dr) Munday gave a brief speech of acceptance Mr (or Dr) Munday gave a brief speech of acceptance in which he pointed out that he was really receiving in which he pointed out that he was really receiving the award on behalf of the whole community of the award on behalf of the whole community of Comberton Village College because it was clearly Comberton Village College because it was clearly teamwork, rather than the efforts of any one individteamwork, rather than the efforts of any one individual, that had led to the school’s success. ual, that had led to the school’s success.  Turn to Page 2 z Turn to Page 2

firmed). Each workshop will cost only £2. firmed). Each workshop will cost only £2. In the evening Comberton Leisure hosts a celeIn the evening Comberton Leisure hosts a celebratory black tie dinner and dance with a live bratory black tie dinner and dance with a live And there will be a month of celebratory And there will be a month of celebratory band, Bayou Gumbo. More details will be band, Bayou Gumbo. More details will be events to mark the milestone during March. events to mark the milestone during March. available in the new year. available in the new year. The main events for the college, which opened The main events for the college, which opened th The The 50 50th anniversary anniversary celebrations celebrations are are also also part part in 1960 with 240 pupils, will be two days of in 1960 with 240 pupils, will be two days of of a month-long Arts of a month-long Arts Festival Festival being being organised organised special activities. special activities. by by Arts Arts Development Development Manager Manager Richard Richard Comberton, which now has 1,410 pupils and Comberton, which now has 1,410 pupils and Brown. Brown. around 250 staff, will stage the official openaround 250 staff, will stage the official openThey They include include aa rock rock band band night night being being organorganing of the latest buildings with specially inviting of the latest buildings with specially invitised ised by by and and for for young young people, people, Custard Custard ed guests on Friday March 5. ed guests on Friday March 5. Comedy, Comedy, Bourn Bourn Players’ Players’ production production of of Roger Adcock, the first warden of Roger Adcock, the first warden of Kiss Kiss Me Me Kate, Kate, Comberton’s Comberton’s annual annual Comberton until 1964, is set to come Comberton until 1964, is set to come show, show, which which next next year year is is Into Into The The from Hampshire to join in the celebrafrom Hampshire to join in the celebraWoods, Woods, South South Cambs’ Cambs’ Arts Arts awards awards tions and will be among guests, includtions and will be among guests, includand, and, on on April April 1, 1, aa CVC’s CVC’s Got Got Talent Talent ing past pupils and other staff, who will ing past pupils and other staff, who will show, show, featuring featuring college college staff. staff. be invited to tour the school to see how it has be invited to tour the school to see how it has Executive Executive Principal Principal Stephen Stephen Munday Munday said: said: changed. changed. “We “We are are delighted delighted to to be be able able to to celebrate celebrate the the There will also be a display of current work There will also be a display of current work college's college's 50th 50th anniversary. anniversary. and historical memorabilia in the atrium. This and historical memorabilia in the atrium. This “It “It is is one one of of those those rare rare opportunities opportunities in in life life to to will include a photographic exhibition and a will include a photographic exhibition and a stop, stop, take take stock stock and and celebrate. celebrate. There There is is so so short history of the college, being written by short history of the college, being written by much much to to celebrate celebrate in in the the 50-year 50-year history history of of the the long-serving Deputy Principal Mary Martin long-serving Deputy Principal Mary Martin college college and and we we want want to to do do it it well. well. and governor Colin Clarkson. and governor Colin Clarkson. “Of “Of course, course, we we also also want want to to look look forward forward to to In the evening there will be a concert with In the evening there will be a concert with the the next next 50 50 years, years, and and we we will will want want to to use use the the high-quality musical items performed by curhigh-quality musical items performed by curcelebrations celebrations to to confirm confirm the the exciting exciting possibilipossibilirent and former students and staff. rent and former students and staff. ties ties for for the the future. future. All All of of this this is is within within the the ononThe following day there will be several mornThe following day there will be several morngoing going constant constant of of being being aa Cambridgeshire Cambridgeshire vilviling workshops for adults and young people, to ing workshops for adults and young people, to lage lage college: college: the the best best sort sort of of schooling schooling that that include cooking, watercolour painting, life include cooking, watercolour painting, life Lance Rayner x 50) 18/11/09 2:12 pm Page 1 is." there is." drawing, tap dancing and more (still to be Ad con- (88there drawing, tap dancing and more (still to be con-

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Pounds for hounds HENRY, a lively eight-year-old Labrador, had the chance to meet the whole of Year 9 during the launch of the Pounds for Hounds campaign in assembly.

This initiative is run by the Dogs for the Disabled — the national charity that trains dogs to help people with disabilities lead more independent lives. Henry’s owner Andy shared with pupils what a huge difference Henry makes to his life. At the end of the assembly a small change collection was taken, which raised a staggering £80 to kick off the fund-raising year. The newly-formed Year 9 charities group are planning to launch a range of innovative fund-raising activities in the new year — Please support them.

Survey shows ‘too much junk’

YEAR 7 Comberton students revealed to their local MP and Shadow Secretary of State for Health, Andrew Lansley, results of a junk food investigation that left a bad taste. To coincide with the British Heart Foundation's (BHF) new report ‘A Fit Choice?’; a campaign report on the provision of children's food in leisure venues, realeased earlier this term, the children conducted an informal survey of food choices in local venues where they go to have fun and get active. The children found no information in cafes or on the vending machines to help identify healthy choices. Their findings, and the report, uncovers how local places where kids go to get fit and active undermine the fight against childhood obesity by offering kids a barrage of unhealthy products loaded with fats, salts and sugars through vending machines and HERE’S TO HEALTHY OPTIONS: MP Andrew meal deals. Lansley and pupils who took part in the survey.

CHANGING LIVES: Support dog Henry meets members of Year 9.

Honour for ‘college community’  From Page 1 He also noted that another recipient of an honorary award that day, Dave Gilmour, a member of the band Pink Floyd and former student of Anglia Ruskin (when it was CCAT) was at a different ceremony. “Perhaps this is just as well,” he commented. “Given that Mr Gilmour’s band was particularly well known for a certain song called ‘We don’t need no education’, then we might have at least a minor philosophical difference.” Anglia Ruskin University have a place on the recently formed Comberton Educational Trust that now oversees Comberton Village College. Prof Helen Valentine, one of the University’s Deputy Vice Chancellors, holds the trustee position and is already taking an active role in supporting the school’s development.

A Wise way to Pay

INSIDE THIS ISSUE  Robot has Right Moves — Page 3

THIS autumn, Comberton introduced a new facility which allows on-line payment from a debit or credit card. The school is working with a company called WisePay. 11 Parents can now credit new funds direct to a pupil’s cash Going Up the Wall — Page 12 less catering account, purchase items of school uniform  Success Recognised — Page 12 and stationery from the school shop, make on-line payments for school trips and buy tickets for school events and  Comberton March On — Page 12 productions. Parents can also review their recent account history and check the balance remaining on a cashless  Pupils Honoured — Page 13 catering card.  Boys Win Through — Page 13 Our on-line payment area can be accessed from the school  Girls Invited for Trials — Page 13 website at Simply click on the WisePay logo.  Four Earn District Call — Page 13 The whole process is safe and secure and all payments are credited straight into a CVC bank account. Over the com Applied Learning — Pages 14, 15 ing months, WisePay will become the school’s preferred and 16 method of receiving payments from parents, although the Finance Office will still accept cheques and the cashless Designed and edited by Judy Czylok. catering card machines in Reception and the Dining Hall 30/11/09 11:10 am Page 1 x 50) BSM (88 9/12/09 11:14 am Page 1 Contact: will continue to operate as normal.  Spotlight on Green Issues — Page

 Remember the Year — Page 3  Winning Review — Page 3  An Incredible Journey — Page 4  History Round-Up — Page 4  Curriculum Extension Days — Page 5  Pupils in the Field — Page 5  Activities Week recalled — Page 6  Muscial Hits — Page 6  Science Round-Up — Page 7  The Benefits of Working Together — Pages 8, 9 and 10  DofE latestTreadmills — Page 11 (88 x 50) Cambridge

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Boys’ creation is a winner

BURIED: Rebecca Farrington’s letter is one of the items in a time capsule.

Remember the year 2009

Robot has right moves

I RECENTLY won a competiJones, to the burial and the A LEGO robot creatopening of the ‘Discovery’ cention in Creative Writing, which ed by two Year 9 tre at the College of West involved writing a letter to Anglia in Milton. The capsule pupils proved a winteenagers of the future describalso included the No 1 CD sin- ner at the East Of ing what life is like now. My gle, some coins from the preletter (an extract of which is England round of the sent, a local newspaper, a colshown below) is buried in a lege prospectus and a drawing First Lego League time capsule which will be Robotics contest. from the junior competition. opened in 50 years. I was invited, with Head of Year 11 Mrs Rebecca Farrington (11N) The interntaional competition is to design, build and Dear Teenagers of the Future. program a robot that can Life in 2009 is hard sometimes, especially when adults just don’t traverse an obstacle course understand how you’re feeling. I like reading and all my English teachers have said that reading lots is a good thing. My parents and autonomously, and commy sister, however, don’t agree. I like reading because it takes me to plete certain missions places far beyond where I can go. I like reading because it takes me within the time limit of TOP TEAM: two and a half minutes. away from the horrors of the real world. The robot In addition to meeting the The real world in 2009 is always shown as being a violent place, and its robot challenge, competiespecially on the news. All the news ever talks about is the bad creators things like people getting murdered or disappearing and people get- tors also have to complete won the ting abused or treated violently. The social services have been criti- a project on a theme which changes every year. practical cised recently for trusting parents too much and letting several But Siddharth Basetti and babies get killed by serious physical abuse by the ones closest to challenges. them, their parents. I hope that the news in 2059 is a lot more hope- Cheng Sun just missed out on a place at the national finals. Comberton’s competition newcomers were pipped ful and good. The good thing about being a teenager is that you don’t have a job, overall by a team who had been entering the competition for seven years. Their presentation on their robot and their project on this year’s theme, transport, saw them you have lots of freedom including going on holidays. The bad thing is that people stereotype us teenagers as being bad for through to the national competition. The Comberton boys looked at ways of solving Cambridge’s bus issues, looking at society. The truth is that only the minority of teenagers commit environmental, convenience and safety questions. crimes. I hate the eyes on me every time I go in a shop as if they With the Guided Bus system already a controversial issue, the city's transport chiefs expect that just because I’m young I’m more likely to steal something. I hate the way people always expect that if one of your family may be interested to know that the boys' solution is The Python, a high-tech vehicle that utilises both road and rail. members has committed a crime that you will too. Teams from all across the East of England battled it out with their robots – along I want to be a writer or a poet because I love words. I love the way with a team from Greece – but Siddarth and Cheng’s robot sailed through seven words can make people feel different emotions. Are books still rounds to take top spot in the practical part of the event. around or have they been replaced by computers? I hope that in your time something has been done about WINNER: global warming and Kartik Vira. KARTIK Vira (8I) recently enjoyed eight longlisted titles, one to keep for climate change has success in The Guardian’s Young been stopped. I hate himself and one to give to the school. Critics Competition in which entrants to think of all those These are now sitting proudly on the were invited to submit a 200-word animals in the Arctic shelves of the school library. and Antarctic being review of one of the books longlisted made extinct in your Kartik said he valued Pratchett's story for the Guardian Children’s Fiction time because their Prize. of a boy's struggles to survive after habitat has melted Kartik reviewed Terry Pratchett’s his world is destroyed by a tsunami, away. I hate to think ‘Nation’ and as one of 10 individual for its "powerful questions about God it’s all because of us Stagecoach (180 x 50) 9/12/09 11:14 am Page 1 winners nationally he received a book and our technology. and the purpose of religion". token together with two sets of the

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An incredible journey SIXTEEN Year 11 students went to explore the mountains and desert area of Morocco in half term.

After spending half a day in Marrakech, where we changed money into Dirhams and bought food for the mountain trek, the group set off for the High Atlas Mountains by minibus. We met our guide, Lassan, in the afternoon and spent the night in the Berber village of Aroumd, where he lives with his family, and we started to get an insight into the Berber people and their way of life. The following day our guides loaded the mules with our rucksacks and we trekked up the valley to the Neltner refuge at 2000m, in preparation for climbing Mount Toubkal the following day. It was a chilly night with temperatures down to zero and we struggled to keep warm in our tents. Toubkal is the highest mountain in North Africa, at a stunning 4167m, with fabulous views over the peaks and valleys of the High Atlas range. It was a tough climb for everyone (except for Lassan!) and the descent was almost as hard as going up. It was an experi-

ence and achievement that no-one will forget, not least Ms Cook and Kara who had to do it a day late, due to illness, and went up at 3.00am the next day with head torches, whilst the others slept. At least they were rewarded at the top by a great sunrise. We said goodbye to the mountains midweek and headed down to the Sahara, a long journey through the mountains passing through the Draa Valley and its palmeries, to meet our camels and explore the desert. It was very hot and we couldn’t go out for any length of time before 3.00pm. Every aspect of life is dictated by the daytime heat here. The colours of the evening sky in the desert are extraordinary and the dunes looked stunning. We left our camels and headed back to Marrakech to explore the souks and the food of the famous Djeema el Fna square and buy our souvenirs. We were sad to go home after nine days because this had been an incredible journey through the real Morocco and we crammed a lot into a short time. Perhaps the most important part of the visit was that we all learned a lot about a culture very different to our own. CAMEL TRAIN: In the Sahara desert.

Remains of destructive conflict

trees in the Allied cemetery. This cemetery instead posYEAR 11 history students were taken on a three-day sessed a quiet dignity for all those men who had died for tour of the battlefields of northern France and Belgium Germany. where, nearly 100 years After dinner we attended ago, millions of men fought the Menin Gate Ceremony, and died in one of the most which the town’s folk have destructive conflicts the done every night since the world has ever seen. end of World War I, aside One coachload went from the German occupastraight to the Museum of tion in WW2. Passchendaele. The museThe following day we um contained many relics departed for Vimy Ridge, from the battle, paintings where Canadian regiments and an underground tunnel in the second army tunnetwork. The other coach nelled under the hill and went to the Tyne Cot Cemetery, which is the caught the Germans on the heavily fortified ridge totalmain Allied cemetery. In ly off guard. After the war the middle were the remains of a German pill the French Government IN THE TRENCHES: Comberton pupils. box, which 90 years earlier donated it to the would have had a brilliant view of the surrounding Canadians, who still own it today. We then headed down to the Somme, visiting such sites as Beaumont Hamel trenches and the Allied lines further down the valley. We and Thiepval, another monument to the dead, where were allowed to wander around the cemetery and, of course, try to find someone with our names on the Miss Foster found one of her relatives on the wall. On the last day we visited a section of the trenches that graves or on the memorial, before swapping over. had been preserved since 1918, as well as the In Flanders Finally we were driven to the Hotel Munchenhof in Langemark, our base for two nights. We were then Fields Museum in the town of Ypres. Thanks to all the staff who made such a fantastic trip taken to the German cemetery, which possessed a very Camborne Osteopaths 30/11/09 3:59 pm Page 1 different atmosphere from the glorious white marble and possible. Sean Spencer (11I)

Lecture gives insight

FIFTEEN students studying AS History were fortunate to have the opportunity to attend a lecture in Cambridge which focussed on The Winter of Discontent. The lecture, given by Professor John Shepherd, was incredibly interesting, full of fascinating anecdotes, many of them about Cambridge, and useful for the students who are studying the topic Britain 1945-1990 for their second AS paper. As the lecture was held in Borders bookshop, the students also had the opportunity to browse the History section to see what publications caught their eye. Overall they were excellent ambassadors for the school, enjoyed themselves hugely, and also got a taste of what History at university might be like.


Pupils go into the field — and beach and town! EARLY on a Sunday morning at the beginning of term, a group of 106 sleepy Year 11 pupils headed towards Swanage on the south coast. On the way there was a lot of singing and gossiping and so the journey soon passed. We called into the village of Corfe and could see why so many visitors stop off at the ancient castle there on their way into Swanage. When we arrived in the tourist town of Swanage we immediately set to work collecting the information we needed for our coursework. We did, of course, manage to find a bit of time for some

traditional fish and chips and the odd ice cream, which always tastes better by the seaside. After a good night’s sleep at the Youth Hostel we set off for Lulworth Cove — this is a quaint old fishing village and is very popular in the summer months. We had a talk at the Heritage centre, walked around the village collecting data and eventually made the trek up the steep hillside to reach the famous Durdle Door. It was a steep, hot climb but the views were spectacular and we could all see exactly why this stretch of coastline is a World Heritage Site.

A little free time back in Swanage was earned at the end of the day, so naturally the boys played cricket while the girls did a little retail therapy. On the final morning we completed our fieldwork in Swanage and finished the trip with a lovely boat trip in the sunshine around Old Harrys Rocks and into Poole Harbour before travelling home. It was definitely a trip to remember as we all had a fantastic three days away. Katie Sims for the year 11 geographers

New MFL options THIS year in Modern Languages we decided to change our approach to Curriculum Extension Days.

For the first time each pupil in Year 8 had the opportunity to sign up for a chosen activity and become an 'expert' in that activity. We had a range of activities on offer, including Salsa, Capoeira (a Brazilian martial art form which combines dance and music), craft, film-making and drama. Each activity was linked to language, culture or the theme of language-learning. In drama pupils created advertisements to advertise the importance of learning a language. In film-making, pupils made a one-minute film in Spanish, French or German on a topic of their choice. In craft, pupils did some origami, made paper baskets from Scandinavia and got to do some henna designs on their hands. In the afternoon, pupils showcased what they had achieved in their chosen activity to the rest of their year half by doing a display of some kind in the performance hall. The Salsa, drama and Capoeira groups performed, the films were shown on the big screen, and the crafts were laid out for everyone to see. The Year 8s had a great day learning the skills in their chosen area and put on an excellent international show in the afternoon. A huge thanks to all the leaders: Miss McCllelland, Miss Driver, Ella Lyons and Pedro. Year 7 spent their two days doing science and PE, Year 9 took part in DT activities and maths, Year 10 focussed on science and English, while Year 11 either had mock exams in drama, music and art or got stuck into revision in other subjects. Morag Walker, MFL Dept

Adrenalin rush for Year 10

RECORDING RESULTS: Pupils use teamwork on the beach at Walton.

Pupils see erosion in action ON the day they were not doing MFL activites, Year 8 went on a Geography trip to Walton-on-the-Naze. First we (roughly) measured the distance from the beach to the top of the groynes, the units being our hands (all right, very roughly) and discovered that the direction of Longshore Drift (the direction in which the waves are carrying sand) was from south to north. Our next activity was a field sketch of the cliffs at Walton. We got to examine some of the London Clay that had fallen on to the beach, and after this, many people were amazed that the cliffs were not eroding more quickly! Activity 3 was to see if the beach comprised of the same materials as the cliffs, before having lunch in the nature reserve. When we had finished eating, we started Activity 4, which was basically reflecting on everything we had learnt so far and discussing conflicts in the area. After walking to the Naze tower, we were told what to do for Activity 5; predicting future damage. We measured the distance from near the edge of the cliff to the tower and to the café and then worked out when they would collapse and fall into

EARLIER this term, 140 students arrived at school and sorted themselves on to the coaches, eager to get to Alton Towers and try out some of the best rides in England. After several hours on our noisy coaches we arrived and split up into our groups. Everyone headed their separate ways to their chosen roller coaster or ride. Several queues, a few rides and lots of popcorn later and we were on our way back home. Everyone enjoyed themselves and, despite feeling very tired, we all retreated back to our parents. Another successful social. Thank you Mrs Burgess, Mrs Stewart the sea using the fact that the Naze is currently eroding two metres per year. and all the other teachers who helped out. Newmarket Lamb (88 x 50) 3/12/09 5:04 pm Page 1 Jack Gale (10M) Jay Richardson (8V) Woodwind & Brass Instruments Sheet Music & Accessories In-house Repair Workshop Mail Order Expert Advice Russell Street





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Just great! AT the end of Year 7 the whole year group go to Beaumanor Hall, Leicestershire, and this summer was no different.

We were all buzzing with excitement when we finally arrived, and it turned out to be with very good reason. There was at least one activity for every person that was a completely new experience; for me it was canoeing, which I fondly remember as being extremely funny, if a little soggy. The high ropes were another favourite, leaving us all slightly dizzy, but extremely proud of ourselves that we had just climbed up

that high, not to mention down again! Other activities included archery, climbing, walking, orienteering, challenges and crafts. The week was finished off with a jam-packed Talent Show (featuring among many others Hamish on the bagpipes and Taj on the dance floor) and a fantastic disco. The only memory of Beaumanor we have that is not quite so fondly remembered, is standing outside in the freezing cold, some of us with towels wrapped around us and shampoo in our hair, to be told that the fire alarm had only gone off because Mr Ncube burnt the toast in the next door cabin. He was not popular that day! All in all we had an amazing time, despite the appalling weather, and bonded as a year group. I guarantee that the current Year 7 will have just as good a time as we had. Emily Chadwick (8B)

MANCER THE MUSICAL: A scene from the production.

Musical wows crowd LAST month saw the premiere of 'Mancer the Musical,' a oneof-a-kind production at CVC, written by Year 11 student, Ed Zanders. Based partly on fellow student Lewis Mancer, the idea for the show originated in a Year 9 music lesson, and then developed in to a fully fledged musical production. The whole project was unique, not only because it was written by a student, but in addition because of the dazzling special effects,

ONE-OFF SHOW: Year 7 pupils perform Geoff Page’s version of A Christmas Carol.

PROUD MOMENT: Pupils tackle the high ropes at Beaumanor Hall.

Bright spot for social area

YOU will have noticed a new ‘Sports’ mural in the Year 11 social area. This was produced by Year 8 and 9 as part of the Graphic Arts project in Activities Week. It was inspired by a five-year national project called ‘Imagination Our Nation’, which is happening in preparation for the Olympics 2012 handover celebrations. Our mural was made by drawing stencils of different sports shoes on the computer and cutting them with CAMM1 (a computer controlled card cutting machine). We wanted to brighten up the Year 11 area, so the coloured backgrounds were based on the art work of Andy Warhol, which we think works well with the black spray painted shoes. Thanks go to Paras Patel, Zak Higginbottom, Oliver Stephenson, Ben Sievewright, Emily Jameson, Jess Gronlund, Petar Edrev, Dan Cracroft-Rice and Chloe Bidwell; for their hard work and commitment throughout Activities week. Pupils also designed and made badges, sold to raise money for ‘Sports Aid’. As our project was inspired by ‘Imagination Our Nation,’ we used their themes for our badges: Fascination, Determination, Germination, Illumination and Imagination.

BEST FOOT FORWARD: The mural now in the Year 11 social area.

which even included a snow machine! ‘Mancer the Musical’ won a £900 grant from John Lewis to go towards production costs. Ed and Lewis appeared on Radio Cambridgeshire and Look East to promote the show. The performances went down very well, receiving rave reviews from both students and teachers. The team enjoyed putting on this spectacular show, and hope to transfer it to a theatre in Cambridge soon!

Scrooge gets new look FORTY Year 7 pupils learned and performed music teacher Geoff Page’s latest muscial, an adaptation of Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol, in just one day. They spent a day out of lessons learning the tunes to 14 songs

which tell the famous tale of Ebeneezer Scrooge. They then performed the show – with the help of having the words projected on to a giant screen – to an audience of family and friends in the evening.

Bus needs more ‘passengers’

EVERY Monday the Arts Bus comes to Hardwick recreation ground from 7.15-8.45pm. It is a converted bus where anybody from Years 7-11 can meet their friends, watch TV, play games and do arts stuff. They also sell drinks and snacks. It is good fun but we need more people to come along after Christmas so it doesn't stop coming. It only costs 50p a week. It is the same bus that came to Comberton earlier this term and Westside Flower Mill (44 x 50) lots of pupils went on it in lessons. Kate Czylok (7N)


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Jury duty TEN Comberton students went to the ‘The Environment in TV and New Media Festival,’ in London.

We watched six documentaries and one drama. We also took part in a panel-led discussion by makers of the programmes. It was an informative and interesting day. Duncan Edgely and Jess Lewis were selected to be on the Young Jury. The Young Jury made up the judging panel, alongside people who work in science media! They voted for the best documentary/drama about the environment. Duncan said: “I felt privileged that I was part of such a big event. Also, the meal was very nice and tasty.” Carys Thomas (11M)

Science Club round-up by Sarah Dowsett


Physics outside the classroom A GROUP of around 20 Year 11 students went to the Physics Institute in Cambridge to see the ‘Physics at Work’ exhibition. This exhibition featured many different displays, each showing different applications of physics. These displays included nanotechnology, Nuclear Weapons systems and material choices, among others, all

of which were very informative and interesting. The most popular display by far was the Nuclear Weapons due to the mini explosions and the amazing Ruben’s tube which causes fire to vibrate in time to music. All in all, the trip was very enjoyable and many interesting facts were learnt. Chris Dancy (11N)

It’s good to talk about science! COMBERTON has been running a hugely successful Science Week for a number of years. Science Week is a potential activity for Year 7 and 8 pupils and is always enjoyed by everyone who takes part; pupils, teachers and helpers alike. The science department is currently looking for parent speakers who have a career or a background in science to tell pupils about their job and/or their experiences in the field of science. If you are interested please contact Miss Segal to answer any questions you may have. Your participation will be greatly appreciated.

Unusual use for denture tablets OOZING SLIME: At Science Club.

Slime can bounce and run!

FOR the final Science club of the first half term, Miss Segal decided that we should have a Halloween-themed experiment of making slime. Each group or individual began with some borate and a mixture of either concentrated or diluted water, which was also added with a hint of green food colouring to make the slime appear to look like snot and goo! Teams then made their own recipies to compare with other groups. To end the fun experiment, we had a slime bouncing competition, and a 'how runny is it?' competition.

WE attempted to make lava lamps out of oil, warm water and denture tablets. We began by semi-boiling some water, and adding a food colouring of our choice. Groups then poured 150mls into a conical flask, and added 100mls of oil to create the structure of their experiment. Each pair received a denture tablet to drop into their structure and see what hap-

pened. The result was that the tablet shot straight to the bottom and started to dissolve. It looked like pieces of it were coming to join the oil at the top, and as it went it fizzed and took bubbles with it. At the end of our experiment the tablet dissolved fully; and it had created a gas called carbon dioxide.

Explosion is so sweet!


FLOW: A SCIENCE club members were asked to bring in a bottle of pupil fizzy drink to use in a practical watches his with Mentos sweets.We firstly experiment. set up a "fizzy drink zone" and took it in turns to experiment with our equipment. Each AN old experiment — 'Shooting film cannisters' — with a few changes was drink was successful, especialone of the Science Club projects. Each group chose which vinegar they wantly the ones with four sweets ed, and measured the amount out into a 100ml beaker. They then poured that inside them. Some students amount into either a dark or clear coloured film cannister. Next, the pairs warmed their drinks to see took the amount of bicarbonate of soda they wanted, wrapped it into a piece what effect it would have (it of tissue paper, and stuck it to the lid of the film cannister. After the preparadid work well). Everyone had tion of it, groups were ready to experiment! Most of the cannisters were very an enjoyable time, seeing all of THERE SHE BLOWS: An exploding sucessful, with the turning over of the cannisters the hardest part. There were Cambridge Comp. Health sweets (44x50) 2/12/09 9:46 am 3/12/09 Pageexplosions, 1 10:55 the big explosions take place. Laexperiment. Pergola Restaurant am and Page many bubbles mess!1

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THE Government’s recent White Paper, ‘Twenty First Century Schools’ is very clear.

The best, perhaps only, way that our school system can improve further is by schools working powerfully with each other to improve opportunities and achievement for all students. In particular, high-achieving schools need to be fully engaged in working with others to help ensure positive progress for all. This philosophy is fully in step with the outlook of Comberton Village College. In particular, one of the five principles of the Comberton Educational Trust states that the school must be outward-looking and always seek to work in partnership with other organisations for mutual benefit. It is for this reason that we are committed in many ways in this area: 15 Advanced Skills Teachers, probably as many as any other school in the country, all have a role working with other schools; all our specialisms of

Sports, Languages and Applied Learning, imply much work with many other schools; our Leading Edge partnership involves work with many other schools, notably the Harbour Special School; our work as a Training School involves much work with others as we seek to help to train current and future educational staff; and our work as a National Support School currently involves us in close support work with St Neots Community College. Many Comberton staff are involved in this outreach and partnership work. We genuinely hope that it makes a positive difference to all those schools with whom we work. We are also clear that it benefits our school. All staff involved benefit from powerful professional development. The opportunity to see how others are working always leads to a greater level of reflection about our own practice and often means that positive, new ideas are formed. We are always happy to work in partnership with others for mutual benefit. Stephen Munday, Executive Principal


THERE ar accredited The level i assessment tation of a Once a tea cent of the involves th another sch developme Currently s work at St

Key work with The Harbour School

THE Harbour School in Ely has been Sean Pollock. cussion forums in RPE exploring diflisted as Comberton’s main partner in Other joint projects have allowed ferent views on faith , Drama workour Leading Edge work for the the last pupils from both schools to work shops led by Mr Sharpe and some four years. together on art and English, where Spanish teaching led by Ms Hawkes. We have had a range of projects, pupils made a film called Peace Studies, Staff connected to CVC through its including helping to develop sport and arising from discussion workshops. Training School status are also PE at the school through the work of There has also been some excellent disinvolved. WORKING AS a pilot in 2009/2010, 9 Year SINCE starting my work at IT OUT: 7 and Year 8 Harbour pupils are CVC I have been a magnet for Primary coming to CVC to trial working ‘unmotivated boys’, often pupils and alongside our pupils in a mainbecause they can achieve sucYear 10 stream setting. cess in PE and we are able to maths develop positive relationships. Harbour has a population of leaders This is an area of work I thorapproximately 60 boys so against help trial oughly enjoy and very early on Comberton’s 1,410, this is someactivities in my career I sought to develthing of a challenge. for a new op my knowledge of different Initially the Harbour group will event. strategies and methods to help come and tour the school, hosted me work successfully with by PEOPLE people who are keen challenging children. to “buddy up” and support the As a result of my desire to Harbour pupils and make them TEACHERS from Comberton work with ‘students with unrefeel welcome. working together to plan a new alised potential’ I am seconded We are planning for the Harbour The Year 4 Maths Collaboratio to The Harbour SEBD school contingent to sample lessons in to work as part of a group to s in Ely. the Arts and Maths initially, but To test the format and the act Working with the PE teacher may explore beyond these cur(Maths Co-ordinator at Bourn CONFIDENCE-BOOSTING: Sean Pollock has helped there our main priority is to set riculum areas later. Butler. introduce gymnastics to the Harbour PE curriculum. up a worthwhile and managePEOPLE people are looking forEight Year 5 pupils from each Harbour are from Key Stages One and Two. I ward to meeting pupils from able curriculum map for PE, which offers five different activities under t challenging and inspiring ideas to the students. have had to develop strategies and get used to another school and learning about four Year 10 Maths Leaders f Before I started at the Harbour PE and Sport working within a totally different ethos while their educational environment. In each group there were boys there was largely geared around team sports. In the past CVC pupils have visit- ing effectively together while c still prioritising student learning. However with lots of planning and hard work, ed the Harbour School and vice The activities included solving I have helped set up a re-integration prothe curriculum now includes gymnastics, versa and exchanges have always zling out a circle activity and, gramme, for pupils who are displaying good health-related fitness, swimming and athletics, proved both fascinating and illutook up most of one side of the behaviour and a desire to re-integrate back into minating as both sides are able to all of which are individual activities and have mainstream education. They have been coming see more clearly how schools pro- Number Puzzle because it help led to increases in self-esteem, confidence and, “My favourite activity was Cir to Comberton and joining in PE lessons with coincidently, teamwork and cooperation. vide opportunities for progress in because it was fun and we wor My teaching has certainly developed enorpupils from CVC. study and personal development. The teachers were very impre mously, as many the students Bike To Be (44 x 50) 3/12/09 9: DWD Home (C) of(44 x 50) I teach 3/12/09 9:19 am (88 Page the W. Painting x 1 50) 7/12/09 1:48 pm Page 1 Mary Martin Sean Pollock er and were grateful to the Co

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utreach is part of AST job

re 15 members of staff at Comberton as advanced skills teachers (ASTs). is achieved after a day of intensive t by an external assessor and the presenportfolio of evidence. acher becomes an AST they spend 20 per eir time on ‘outreach’ work. Often this he AST in working alongside staff in hool, supporting curriculum and staff ent in that school. six of our AST team are deployed in such Neots Community College, where pro-

jects include working with teachers to strengthen schemes of learning, developing strategies for differentiation and behaviour management, developing transition materials for use with Year 6 pupils, team teaching lessons and providing subject resources. Staff gather evidence carefully before jointly agreeing on the development strategy to be employed. Some of the ASTs are also acting as a support to a newly qualified member of staff, giving them some intensive help and time to work through ideas and difficulties. As the work is totally collaborative the benefit is two way, with the ideas for resources and curriculum plans often finding their way back to Comberton! Working in another environment in professional dialogue with colleagues is an excellent way to ensure that we are always moving our ideas and methods of teaching forward. Irayna Owen, AST Science & SEN AST team co-ordinator

THIS term I have been working with three schools. I am working alongside other staff from CVC to support colleagues at St Neots CC. The head of PE there identified five areas of work and, with Sean Sycamore and Mark Goldring, we are putting structures in place to further develop the taught and extended curriculum. I have taught a Year 2 gymnastics lesson at Gamlingay First School, for all the staff to watch, and then led a discussion around High Quality PE, with a particular

SPREADING THE WORD: Ally Brennan leads a staff discussion at Gamlingay First School. focus on gymnastics and apparatus work. Teaching resources have been shared and the offer made of further support. I am working in an on-going way with teachers at Jeavons Wood in Cambourne. There are particular challenges working in temporary buildings with limited storage so we have been looking at creative solutions. In addition I have led a staff meeting with a focus on High Quality PE and working within the National Strategy for PE and Sport. Ally Brennan, AST PE

CVC pupils impress visiting staff

helps solve problems

n, and Bourn and Caldecote Primary Schools have been w event that will take place in February at the College. on will invite local primary schools to send mathematicians solve problems. tivities Mark Dawes (AST at CVC) and Rachel Hensby n) were invited to Caldecote by their maths co-ordinator Dee

h of the two primary schools spent the morning carrying out the watchful eyes of the teachers and with the support of from Comberton. s and girls from the two schools and the accent was on workcarrying out exciting and interesting mathematical activities. g a problem with dominoes, exploring TV programmes, puzmost intriguingly, dealing with a picture of a giant which e hall! Comments from the pupils included: “I liked the ped you to understand loads of difficult maths questions.” rcles because it was challenging and fun.” “Giant was best rked as a team.” essed with the pupils and the way they worked so well togethSlimming omberton pupils for their impressive and mature leadership.

COMBERTON has been working with schools in Norfolk, Essex and Hertfordshire as part of the national ‘Gaining Ground’ initiative. CVC is supporting schools which are currently achieving well, but whom the Department for Children, Schools and Families believes have the capacity to push on to even greater achievement in the future. Teachers from Hellesdon High School in Norwich, Tring School and Newport Free Grammar have been welcomed to CVC to observe teaching and learning, and our staff have undertaken reciprocal visits to watch practice there. Teachers from all these partner institutions have valued the chance to share their experiences, and they have always left particularly impressed with the way Comberton pupils are committed to developing their own learning. The quality of the food available at break and lunchtime also gets consistently noticed! For CVC staff the programme has offered a valuable opportunity to reflect on how and why we approach our teaching and learning in the way that we do, and to engage in a mutually supportive dialogue with colleagues from different schools.

Collaboration for creative learning

THE Linked Up award scheme offers Longsands and Bassingbourn Village College) to submit a bid to develop innofunding for curriculum development projects carried out by groups of language vative approaches to developing both teachers and other partners working in prispontaneous and planned speaking in the mary, secondary or 16-19 education in target language across Key Stages 3 and England. The scheme will fund more than 4. 100 projects which aim to transform the At the end of November we were awardlanguage learning experience of learners. ed the project funding and work has started Language teachers at CVC teamed up with teachalready in all four schools. The materials and ers from four other local secondary schools (St strategies developed will be made available to all World (88 x 50) 26/11/09 8:21 am Page 1 Neots Community College, Netherhall, language teachers across the country.

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Proven partnership PE TEACHER Paula Fisher is the new School Sport CoOrdinator for the Comberton cluster of schools within the South Cambs School Sports Partnership.

As well as teaching at Comberton three days a week, she spends two days helping improve the quality of curriculum PE on offer in 11 schools (CVC and its 10 feeder primaries) as well as focusing on improving the quality and quantity of sport available to young people, on school sites, in clubs and in the wider community. She has taken over this role this term from Ally Brennan, who was the Primary PE manager. The South Cambs School Sports Partnership (SCSSP), based at Comberton, was launched in September 2003. Partnership Development manager Claire McDonnell oversees the work of the Partnership which involves eight secondary schools, The Granta Special School and 46 primary schools across South Cambridgeshire. The overarching aim of the School Sport Partnership Programme is to give every young person in England access to five hours a week of Physical Education and sport; an ambition, which lies at the heart of the legacy aims of the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games. Through the work of SCSSP local schools are benefitting from a comprehensive programme of Continued Professional Development opportunities for staff, more coaches to support the delivery of high quality out-of hours-activities, regular opportunities to take part in inter-school competition, a top-up swimming programme to help pupils meet the Key Stage 2 standards, links with local community clubs, leadership training for pupils aged 8-16, and support with delivering high quality PE. The Partnership recently received a National Innovation Award for finding new ways to raise participation and engagement in sport through its successful coaching programme. Ms McDonnell said: “Young people are really benefitting from the coaching programme with many more opportunities to take part in extra curricular activities that link into local clubs and competitions.”

HELP: For pupils of all ages from specialist coaches.

Families aid cyberbullying research DURING the summer months a number of pupils and parents at Comberton participated in research on Cyberbullying. This research was jointly sanctioned by Cambridge Educational Psychology Service and University College London. As part of the research a questionnaire was circulated to the parents of 289 students in Comberton Village College asking for their views on Cyberbullying. All returned questionnaires were entered into a prize draw for £100 worth of HMV vouchers and were won by Jenny Bowles, whose children, Abigail and Jack White, are in Year 10 and 7. Thank you to all those who took part. Your help was greatly appreciated. Shane Gallagher, Trainee Educational Psychologist Cambridge Educational Psychology Service The Rubber Company-2 9/12/09 11:15 am Page 1

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Hiking record COMBERTON’S most ambitious Duke of Edinburgh Award expedition took place in the Chilterns earlier this term.

after a hearty breakfast of Trangia-baked porridge, hot chocolate or other DofE food-based delicacies. A quick chat with assessors to determine check points and a final confirmation of the route and all pupils had ON THE MARCH: Silver participants. An incredible 140 pupils participated in the assessed left camp by 9am. venture, with 15 Year 11 DofE leaders assisting for the On the whole pupils navigated their route carefully and weekend. worked well in their groups, some singing for the We arrived at the campsites entirety of their route! on Friday evening and the There was the odd group pupils set up camp on what who got lost, but the majorTHE Silver assessed venture was origwas a pleasant September ity of pupils made it to the inally planned for July, a lovely evening. second campsite in good month with long days and warm temThe group was split between time before the evening set peratures. two camps with half of the in. pupils beginning their expePupils quickly erected their Unfortunately, several key staff sucdition at Woodrow High tents, and gathered together cumbed to Swine Flu and the weekend was cancelled for safety reasons. House near Amersham and to cook their dinner while Thus the rescheduled venture took the other half at staff enjoyed a tasty Ellesborough. place in October, with its short days Japanese curry! At Ellesborough, pupils’ and rather colder weather. On Sunday morning, camp craft was very good This threw up more challenges with despite being cold and and all cooked their dinner regards to planning for routes that everyone feeling tired and (and washed up) efficiently aching from the day before, ensured participants arrived at camp after spending the evening before dusk and making sure all pupils were quick to playing football. equipment was suitable for potentialdecamp and begin their At Woodrow High House, ly wintry conditions. routes. They all made it pupils experienced an With a record number of particiback to the meeting point evening hike before settling pants, for the first time we split the for the coach in good time down for the night. Lights groups into two and had one group of despite a couple of groups were out by 10pm, to get getting lost in the infamous 40 moving south from Macclesfield some much needed sleep Wendover Woods, although Forest to Tissington and another before two days of hiking group of 40 moving north from to their credit they were across the Chilterns. able to correct their mistake Monsal Head to Macclesfield Forest. INTO THE WOODS: The DofE Bronze venture. Pupils were up at 7am and Essentially, CVC took over the White and quickly get back on in high spirits on Saturday morning ready to set off on Peak for the weekend and it is a credtheir route without assistance. their expedition heading towards Braid Wood, where it to all participants that they folTired, mudsplashed but with a huge sense of achieveall 155 pupils, staff, assessors and volunteers camped ment all pupils arrived back at CVC at 5pm after a suc- lowed the ethos of minimal impact on together on the Saturday night. the countryside so that no-one who cessful expedition. The weather was bright and pupils set off in good time Vicki Robertson, DofE Expeditions came after us would know we had been there. Fortunately, the weather was kind apart from a couple of mornings when mist tested both the navigation COMBERTON has started aiming for silver this year into what our main aims are for environmental issues. skills and the clothing of participants. with a relaunch of activities looking at environmental We will also, hopefully, in the coming months start Most were up to the challenge. The issues. some projects with regards to the school grounds, rest of the time was rather sunny and Last year we achieved our Bronze Eco-Schools like the lake and conservation areas. warm which allowed everyone the award, and we are now working towards our Silver We also are advertising a Design-a-poster competiopportunity to enjoy the magnificent Eco-Schools award ( with tion, where we want pupils at CVC to make a poster scenery surrounding them. the new Year 11 Geography, Science and advertising Comberton’s main environmental aims. The venture was undertaken by all Environmental leaders running a club for Year 7, 8 In addition to this, we are now awaiting funding so participants under more difficult cirand 9 on Friday Lunchtimes named “RECO Club”. that we can order green boxes for our new “paper cumstances than usual but the skills We look at the steps that need to be taken in order to and understanding of the countryside recycling scheme”. make our school more environmentally friendly. shown by participants was up to the Years 7-10 will now be represented by a different Some of the projects we have started are creating a challenge and resulted in a very tree — Maple, Birch, Oak and Ash — and new maps new noticeboard within the school community, outenjoyable and satisfying weekend for have been created for the forms to carry out paper lining some of the issues at school, looking at creatall involved. recycling on a regular basis. ing posters to advertise environmental issues, creatLeigh Bellis, ing a brand new eco-code and looking 5:21 pm Page 1 Vincent Menezes (11N) 5th Generation 180forxthe50school 17/11/09 DofE Expeditions Coordinator

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Success recognised

COMBERTON were runners-up and a former pupil won a top award at the annual Living Sport Awards dinner. CVC were second to Hinchingbrooke School, Huntingdon, in the School of the Year category, which reflected well on the PE dept, the South Cambs School Sports Partnership, our pupils, our local community clubs and on the support and help PE WINNER: Former CVC and Sport receives from all staff at Comberton. pupil Charlotte Cox. Ex-pupil Charlotte Cox won the Disabled Picture: Shaun Scott Photography. Sports Performer of the Year category. The young athlete is a geuine prospect for the GB team at the 2012 Paralympics in London. Her sister Harriet, another former CVC student, was a runner-up in the Young Community Volunteer of the Year category, in which Natasha Collins, who also attended Comberton, was one of the other nominees. The judo player’s club, Comberton Judo Club, was nominated for the Community Club of the Year. Living Sport is the umbrella organisation for sport in Cambridgeshire, Hunts and Peterborough and guest speaker at the awards, at the Marriott Hotel in Huntingdon, was former England rugby union winger Rory Underwood. Charlotte went on to be named Disabled Sports Personality of the Year at the BBC East sports awards last week.

STORMING THROUGH: The Comberton team who beat Oakham School to ensure unbeaten progess in their national competition.

Comberton march on

COMBERTON’s under-15 boys’ squash team completed a hat-trick of emphatic victories to move into the second stage of the National Schools Championship. They completed their round robin games in Stage One with a 4-1 win over Oakham School to follow the victories over Kenilworth College (50) and Bedford School (4-1) David Snelling made his debut in the Oakham match, played at Comberton, after being promoted from the reserves. And although he lost 3-2 at No 5, he played well in a see-saw contest. After that though, Comberton were not really troubled with Tom Blair, Sam Bradshaw, Will Collett and Alex Gooding all recording 3-0 wins to see CVC through as group winners in Stage One. They have a bye in the first round of Stage Two, followed by what promises to be a tough match against Wycliffe College in the new year. The Hoops Advert (88 James Ward (88 x 50) 30/11/09 Ray Scrivens, Team Manager


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Going up the wall!

ROPED AND READY: Pupils prepare to tackle the new climbing wall with guidance from Nigel Carrick, the Director of PE and Sport.

Picture: Cambridge News

COMBERTON’S new climbing wall has been completed. Built from ‘Rocktopia’, the wall stands six metres tall and 10 metres wide. With 13 main routes, the moulded rock surface provides a wide variety of options, including ‘Lead’ climbing, and standards from complete beginner to experienced climbers. Staff are being trained and a wide range of courses will be on offer in the new year covering all age groups. In the meantime the wall is open to experienced climbers, who can also supervise up to two novice climbers with equipment being provided. Access to the wall is via Comberton Leisure. Opening times are Monday to Wednesday 8.30pm–10pm, Saturdays 1pm–4pm and Sundays 8am–4pm. Due to the heavy demands placed on Comberton Leisure it is recommended that you phone on (01223) 264444 to confirm availability before travelling.

Scoring first despite defeat

quicker and more skilful team, but COMBERTON'S Year 8 footballers Comberton battled hard and had the reached the third round of their consolation being the first team to National Cup competition. score against them this season. The boys beat Milton Keynes 7-2 in the The team went out in the first round of first round and Chalkstone from the County Cup, going down 3-2 to Haverhill 5-2 in the second before Voyager in a repeat of last year's final. going down 8-2 at St Bonaventures The 1team are now looking forward to Newham in London.8:14 am Page xfrom 50) 19/11/09 Thank You (C) 8/12/09 12:59 pm the District competition. The Londoners were the stronger, Open 7 days a week including Bank Holidays 12.00pm-2.00pm & 5.30pm-11.00pm Sunday 12.00pm-2.30pm & 5.30pm-10.00pm

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Pupils honoured

FOUR students have been recognised for their services to sport, dance and exercise at Comberton and in the wider community. Anya Hall and Sam Spencer, from Year 11, and Year 9 pupils Katie Isbister and Guy Kendall, have been named as the KS4 and KS3 Sports Boys and Girls for the academic year 2008-09 respectively. The students were recognised for their commitment to developing their own sport and performing to the highest possible standards while encouraging and supporting others into physical activity opportunities. They topped a long list of contenders and Head of PE Sean Sycamore said: “I would like to personally congratulate the students on these awards and wish them continued success within the field of sport in both performance SERVICE TO SPORT: The KS4 winners. and leadership. Well done!”

COMMITMENT: The KS3 winners.

Boys win through THE Year 8 Comberton rugby team are through to the East Anglian competition for District Champions. CVC won the title after beating favourites Soham with tries from David Hitchings, whose breakaway score paved the way for further tries from Luca Williams and Kola Korulchuk. Comberton cruised through the pool stage to face Bottisham in the semifinals, where a convincing 25-0 victory set up the final clash with Soham. The boys then went agonisingly close to adding the county crown at Huntingdon Rugby Club. Comberton smashed their way though the pool matches, destroying St Ivo 35-0, St Peter's 25-0 and Sawtry B 25-0. The defence was immense and try scoring was spread among the whole team, as the forwards powered up the pitch and gave the backs the ball on a plate. After a long delay due to a nasty injury, CVC were up against the Sawtry A team in the final. As the game kicked off the heavens opened and Sawtry took an early 5-0 lead. Comberton then proceeded to batter the Sawtry line for the remainder of the game. Try as they might Comberton were unable to get the score their possession and territory deserved, Sam Walker was held up twice over the try line!

Girls invited for trials

ALL seven Comberton pupils who attended a Year 8 Girls Rugby Taster Day at Shelford last month have been invited to trials in the new year. The seven, Katy Blackhurst, Charlotte Gibbons, Aisling Rochford, Ellie Farrow, Emily Randall-Bowen, Roxanna Shini and Megan Ward, have all been asked to try out for the squad that will be selected to represent the Cambridge and Witchford districts in the Emerging Schools County final. The taster day at Shelford lasted more than four hours. It focused on mass participation and was open to girls of all abiliASKED BACK: The Comberton girls. ties.

Eight earn District call

EIGHT Comberton pupils have won selection for the Cambridge and District Schools Cross-Country team. Tom Blatch, from Year 7, Guy Kendall, Sam Reynolds, Ben Littledyke and Faye McLellan, from Year 9, and Upper School Trio Millie Turner, Hattie Algar (both year 10) and Clara Greed Year 11 all finished in the top 14 of their age group at the district championships on Royston Heath at the start of this month. They will now run against the top finishers from Fenland, Hunts and Peterborough in the new year. Guy made light of muddy and icy conditions and the fact he missed seven weeks of training with a badly broken arm to win the Junior (Years 8 and 9) boys’ race by some distance. Sam was sixth and Ben seventh. Faye finished third in the equivalent girls’ category while Millie, Hattie and Clara were second sixth and 10th respectively in the Inter class for Year 10 and 11 pupils. Tom, in his first experience of the competition, was second in the Minor Boys. Success at the county championships will lead to county honours at the Anglian event with the best runners in the older age groups going on to represent Cambridgeshire at the English Schools Cross-Country Championships in the spring, something that both Guy and NC Plumbing (180 x 50) 2/12/09 8:53 am Page 1 DISTRICT CHAMPIONS: Comberton’s Year 8 rugby team. Millie achieved last year.

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Art in the real world

Hands-on experience NEXT year’s BTEC Business Trips have been announced.

During March 2010, the Year 10 BTEC business students will be embarking on an exciting and informative trip to Thorpe Park, where they will learn about roles and responsibilities of Park staff as well as Park recruitment and their Organisational Structure. There might also be an opportunity to

try out the rides — time permitting of course! The highly-successful Year 11 business students will be venturing out to the British Maritime Museum and The British Music Experience exhibition at the O2 Arena, London. Students will be investigating customer service provision and taking part in a workshop activity. More details to follow! Chris Warrington

LAST month, the BTEC Art group went to Cambridge. We went to various places. We went to the Fitzwilliam Museum, where we saw prints by Odilon Redon, and an original print by Andy Warhol which is what we were there to see. It was fun and I learnt lots of interesting facts about different things! We also went to Byard art. Inside the gallery they had some amazing bits of artwork. These ranged from crazy bird paintings, to wire works, to canvases with felt balls on bits of wire. When touched gently they vibrate to create an amazing effect. There were some that looked like a setting sun, a rising moon and just some multicoloured ones. After looking at the Galleries, we went to The Fudge Kitchen. We tasted some of the fudge, but it was very, very sweet. You would only want a little piece a day. We stood and watched some fudge being made. It’s amazing, they have it in liquid form on a big, marble table, when it gets more flexible they twirl it around. It looks like molten glass. We didn’t get to finish watching it being made but it was fantastic to watch! Alana Hardiman (10B)

OUT AND ABOUT: Pupils in the BTEC Art group in Cambridge.

Developing photo skills

RIDING HIGH: Year 10 BTEC Business pupils will be hoping there is time to sample the rides during next year’s visit to Rosswell Electrical Advert Thorpe Park.


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THE Photography Unit in BTEC Art and Design is fascinating — incorporating building photoshoots, Camera Obscuras and working on Photoshop techniques. The only aspect of photography that we cannot address in school though, is traditional — we don’t have a darkroom! Fortunately, a local photographer, Lotte Attwood does. She kindly invited the Year 11s to a demonstration of darkroom techniques in her purpose-built studio in Cambridge. The process of developing a photograph from film is a long-winded one compared to pressing a button on a Digital Camera. It involves working in the dark, precise timing, test runs and different chemicals. It is also magical to watch the image developing in front of you and there is a sense of satisfaction when you get a perfect print that you just don’t get on a computer. Ms Attwood was informative and interesting and the afternoon spent in her studio passed all too quickly. The students left with handfuls of prints, some of which they had processed themselves. We will have a darkroom in the new sixth form — but until then, thanks to Ms Attwood for providing a valuable learning experience.


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Even more choice FLUSH with the success of the 2007-09 cohort, we are starting our options process to recruit the 2010-12 cohort.

different diploma lines: Business, Administration and Finance, Sport and Active Leisure, Hair and Beauty, Construction and the Built Environment, Engineering, Creative and Media, Society, Health and Development, Retail, Public Services and Environment and Land-Based Studies.

 Functional Skills — maths, English and IT relevant to the real world  Personal, Learning and Thinking Skills — things like organisation, time management, etc. Current Year 9 pupils will have a broader curricu Additional and Specialist Learning — other lum than ever at KS4 to select their options from, qualifications, such as GCSEs and BTECs and with such a wide range of subjects and  A Project - on any subject you like qualification choices, we have been workTwo of the subjects, Business and Sport, ing hard to make sure pupils and parents pupils will study at Comberton, and our staff have the information they need to make are very hard at work, writing new, interesting their choices in the new year. and exciting courses for these pupils in liaison The first stage was a Vocational Courses with expert teachers from other schools in the Awareness Evening in early November, local area. when we outlined the different qualificaFor the other eight subjects, if pupils wish to tions we are offering at Comberton next opt for them, they will travel to other local year, from the BTEC to the new Diploma, schools such as Swavesey or Bassingbourn to through to an NVQ in Business Spanish. study for one day a week. All the vocational courses have a real We currently have two girls in Year 10 on the emphasis on alternative assessment methHair and Beauty Diploma at Swavesey, thorDIPLOMA STUDENTS: The pupils, including two from ods (so hardly any exams), work-based oughly enjoying the course, and we hope that Comberton, who are on the Hair and Beauty Diploma at settings, and broader skills such as teamsome current Year 9 will find this new option Swavesey Village College. work, independent learning, and organisaopen to them as challenging, enjoyable and tion. The diploma is a new course which is quite difrewarding as the Hair and Beauty students do. However, it can be confusing, when we are all ferent to other qualifications. It is made up of lots There will be a lot more information and guidfamiliar with GCSEs, to remember all the differof different parts, which when they are all ance coming in Year 9's direction during the ent elements of these qualifications, and their achieved are equivalent to 7 GCSE's grade A*-C. options process, but if you have any questions equivalence in GCSE grades. Full details can be These parts are: about the vocational courses, please get in touch. found on the school website if you need it!  The Principal Learning — the content relevant Lorna Bateson, The major change from next September is that to the subject picked Director of Applied Learning pupils will be able to study the new diploma in 10

A different way of studying Career pathways YEAR 9 Students will have an exciting • English, Maths and ICT (at level 2) • Creative thinking new Business Studies option available to • Team-working them for 2010. • Self-management Next September will see the introduction In addition to the new qualification, the of a groundbreaking and exciting qualification for Key Stage 4 Students. Preparations are now well under way for the Higher Diploma in Business, Administration and Finance, set to begin in September 2010. Diplomas are qualifications equivalent to seven GCSEs at grades A* to C and enable learners to progress to employment within the Business, Administration and Finance sectors and related industries, as BUSINESS SUITE: A new look. well as providing a solid grounding in BTEC Business classroom is also being business skills for young people who hope refurbished into a professional business to run their own business. suite, including new ICT equipment and Comberton students will develop skills business furniture. Students will able to that are valued by employers and univerenhance their business skills by learning sities, which will be useful to them in the within a business environment. future, no matter which path they take, PC Home Call (180 x 50) 4/12/09 4:42 pm Page 1 for example:

CURRENT Year 9 pupils will be able to opt for a range of courses in Sport and Physical Education at CVC starting in September 2010. Alongside the well-established and successful GCSE PE or BTEC Sport options, pupils will be able to choose the new Diploma in Sport and Active Leisure. This diploma, like all diplomas, is made up of various sections, and if all sections are passed it is the equivalent of 7 GCSE Grades A*-C and, alongside other GCSEs, provides a pathway into sixth form centres or into the workplace. Where GCSE PE and the BTEC are more practically sport based, the Diploma is more to do with developing the skills required to make a career in the Sport and Active Leisure Industry. Many of these skills will be ‘higher order’ in nature, skills required to be a manager or organiser. With 50 per cent of the Diploma being ‘Applied’, learning by doing, pupils will not be spending the majority of their time sitting at a desk, but will be researching the industry, meeting employers, observing within the workplace, planning and putting into action their own thoughts and ideas. The Diploma in Sport and Active Leisure is a different way of learning which, for the right pupils, provides an alternative route beyond 16+. Nigel Carrick, Director of PE and Sport



Stunning first results OUR first cohort of pupils completed BTEC qualifications with us in the summer — and their results were absolutely phenomenal.

In BTEC Business more than half of all students gained Distinction Plus, the highest possible grade and equivalent to 4 A*'s at GCSE. Of these pupils, 10 (53%) of them achieved full marks on the qualification, completing all work to the highest standard possible. These pupils are: Cambridge Chan, Josh Eaton, Laurence Groom, Sophia Groom, Albert Lin, Miranda Lin, Kai Majerus, Katie McNamee, Matt Starace, and Melissa Wood. Given that only five pupils on the course (16%) were predicted an A or A* at the start of the course, this is a phenomenal achievement for

these pupils and the Business department. BTEC Sport was also highly successful. The predictions at the start of the course were that all pupils were looking at gaining B and C grades, and yet a combination of the PE Department and Mr Pollock's creative and challenging course, and the pupils’ dedication and hard work, meant that a third of all pupils completing the full course gained the equivalent of 4 A's. One pupil passed the BTEC certificate worth 2 GCSEs. BTEC Art and Design is led by Ms Powys, who is a powerhouse of creative energy and ideas. Her work, together with the ideas, support and hard work of the Art Department, led to some fantastic results for our pupils last summer. Again, using KS3 data, the predictors for the pupils when they embarked on the course were that they would achieve mainly C grades.

However, 30% of all pupils gained the equivalent of 4 A and A* grades. Through their flexibility and support, together with the work of our new Green Room, the Art Department supported two pupils who followed alternative educational paths to main school in Year 11 to achieve the BTEC Certificate equivalent to 2 GCSEs at grade C. These results are a fantastic credit to the pupils and staff on these courses, and re-enforce our commitment here at Comberton to delivering a very high quality suite of vocational courses. Many of these pupils have chosen to continue in these subjects at sixth form college, taking on further BTEC qualifications, A levels, or the new diploma in their subjects, suggesting that we have succeeded in offering courses which interest pupils and support them to achieve their potential.

New teacher gets stuck straight in

IN the summer, we were sad to say goodbye to Mrs Emma Weston, who received a promotion back at her old school where she went as a pupil. She was a real asset to the college, helping us to achieve some truly outstanding results with last year’s Year 11 students. However, we are very excited to have appointed an excellent Business Studies teacher, Mr Chris Warrington, the new coordinator for Business and Enterprise. He joined us from another local school, where he taught several vocational, GCSE and A level courses. Before this, Mr Warrington worked for five years as a Recruitment CHRIS Specialist in the construcWARRINGTON tion, financial and banking sectors, so has lots of industry knowledge which he is keen to share and build into our course. He is already proving himself a real asset: developing local employer links, writing and steering the development of the new diploma, setting up the Investor Challenge, and devising new and exciting trips to enhance business students’ learning beyond the classroom. More than this however, he’s also volunteered on a silver D of E expedition, on a Year 8 visit to Walton, and visited Spain as part of our International School status — and he’s only been here a term!

THE TEAM TO BEAT: Last year’s CVC winners Semi Skimmed Ltd.

Risk-free investment challenge FORTY Year 10 and 11 students will attempt to crack the stock market after investing a virtual £100, 000 in FTSE 100 companies. The Student Investor Challenge began last month and the teams taking part will have four months of on-line trading to make as much profit as possible on their initial investment, while trying to avoid a disastrous loss! The competition, run by the IFS, gives students aged 14-19 the opportunity to take risks and develop their team working and decision making skills in a simulated stock market. All stock market data is genuine live data, only the trading and cash is virtual! Portfolios must consist of 10 stocks chosen from the FTSE100 companies, plus 50 selected smaller companies. Students are charged stamp duty and commission and when they sell a stock, they are

also charged commission. They also have the option to invest up to £20,000 of their virtual cash into an investment trust. The top 20 teams from each region with the best performing portfolios on 27 February will be invited to attend the regional finals. Then the top two from each region will go to the National Final in late April. Winners of that win an allexpenses paid trip to New York, £2,000 for the school and £200 for each team member. There are also several smaller prizes along the way. Last year’s Year 10 winners were ‘Semi Skimmed Ltd’ (Alan Leung, Alban Fernandez, Joshua Higginbottom and William McArdle). Their final portfolio was valued at £109,400.31 (£9,400.31 profit). Let’s see if this can be beaten this year!

Wallis, Cavendish House, Cambridge Road, Barton, Cambridge CB23 7AW. 5 mins from J12 - M11

Designed by Judy Czylok, CVC.

Produced by Sears Publishing Ltd. 01480 455123.

News@com winter 09  
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