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Newsletter Newsletter of Heartlands Academy

Issue 10, Autumn Term 2012

Official Opening T

he team work that is at the heart of everything we do here at Heartlands Academy was never so evident as it was during the preparations for the Official Opening event on 7th December. Staff and students worked together to finish the motto: “Heartlands Students Can……” and the result

was a collection of beautifully read statements by students from all year groups, governors and staff. Candles were lit and a truly inspiring video film reminded us all of the journey we have made from the old building to this wonderful, new one. Both memorable performances from Maria Maeila and the Year 7 choir and mature and confident presentations from the Head Prefects and sixth former Rahimeen Abbas contributed to an event

that we will remember for a very long time. The respect shown towards all participants by the entire student body was a credit to every single person: several staff members commented that it made them “proud to be a Heartlands teacher.” Mrs Hanson

The Official Opening of Heartlands Academy’s New Building... ...was a fitting end to a fantastic year. It gave the academy an opportunity to demonstrate to the local community and guests the talents of our students and staff. I believe Heartlands Academy has a bright future and we will continue to be a centre of excellence for our young people. May I take this opportunity to thank the staff, parents, local community and, most importantly, the students for making Heartlands the pleasure it is to come to work. As always, thank you for your continued support, to staff enjoy a well-earned break and to you all every best wish for 2013. Mrs Jones

A short note to thank you and the staff and students at Heartlands for a thoroughly enjoyable day on Friday; these are days which reaffirm why being a Board member of E-ACT is such an honour. It all started in such splendid fashion with your students putting on performances of maturity and quality which does the academy great credit. Gerry McCormack, E-ACT Board Member Heartlands Academy and their recent successes embodies E-ACT’s commitment to delivering educational excellence. I am delighted the academy now has a modern space and the 21st Century facilities to match the quality of education we have seen displayed by the staff, and the achievements of its students. Congratulations to everyone involved. Sir Bruce Liddington, Director General of E-ACT

Mrs Jones’ Diary 2012

As we say farewell to the year it really is a time to reflect on some of the successes of Heartlands Academy in 2012.

January The academy is judged Outstanding in all categories by Ofsted. Everyone enjoyed a slice of delicious sponge cake to celebrate.

February The academy is awarded the Youth Sports Trust Gold Award for the

development of high quality PE and Sport. The PE team also won a national innovations award for their excellent use of PE and academy sport to raise standards.

March Heartlands’ first pantomime – a real success. Year 11 went on their annual residential.

April Another first for Heartlands, who hosted an ‘Open Mic’ night. Many students performed in front of a live audience and special guests Sam Aston and Nicholas Galante.

The academy was awarded the Cultural Diversity Quality Standards ‘Gold’ Award. This is awarded for the academy’s work around Cultural Diversity and Community Cohesion.

May We celebrated the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee by having a red, white and blue themed lunch.

June The academy hosted its first ever Sports Awards evening. Parents and students listened to a truly inspirational speech from Daniel Caines, a 400 metre Olympian.

July A sad occasion when all said goodbye to the old school building; it was particularly poignant to see the sweaters tied to the gates.

August ‘The best results ever’ Heartlands Students celebrated the success of their

hard work and the support from their teachers in achieving results that put the academy in the top 2% nationally for progress Six Heartlands students took part in an amazing lifetime opportunity by acting as officials in the Paralympic Table Tennis Competition.

September Excitement, as the staff and students moved into the new building.

The students arrived In their new uniform and were ‘wowed’ by their new learning environment .

October The vast majority of year 7 students enjoyed a 3 day residential experience in Shropshire as part of one of the academy’s Creative Curriculum weeks.

November The annual Celebration Evening was held in the Main Hall. Parents, staff and students celebrated the examination successes of the Class of 2012.

December On Friday 7 December all of the students, staff and governors celebrated

the Official Opening of the new academy buildings. Members of the E-ACT Board representatives from Birmingham City Council and Lendlease Construction were also in attendance.


DISCOVERY CENTRE Mathematics, Science, Health & Social Care. Forensics

The Year 7 students spent the first half term training to become forensic scientists culminating in a Crime Scene Investigation. They got to grips with how to carry out basic scientific experiments and then had to solve the case of the ‘Sugar Plum Fairy’ using fingerprinting and chromotography. There followed a series of daring cake escapes within the science department; the perpetrator being nicknamed the ‘Sugar Plum Fairy’ due to the size of the footprints and the tell-tale cake crumbs left behind at each crime scene.

Maths-Science-PE Cross-Curricular Investigation

In order to develop students’ understanding of the scientific and mathematical processes involved in the effects of exercise on the body, a group of Year 8 students measured changes in their heart rate during PE while partaking in a variety of exercises. The findings were later compared and analysed during science and maths lessons. Students employed specialist scientific language to produce a written evaluation of the data in science and produced graphs of results in a maths lesson. Students thought that linking three subject areas in a practical way showed that they had more in common than they thought! Future

cross-curricular activities are currently being planned to enable the students to design their own investigations. Miss Javaheri, Mr Hare

Primary School Links

Students from Nechells Primary E-ACT Academy and St Matthews C of E Primary School have been brushing up on their science skills with Heartlands science staff: Mrs Hatcher and Ms Shah. So far this term they have made slime, a model of the solar system and dissected a sheep’s heart. J.Hatcher

Maths Challenge Club

Every Wednesday after school the Maths Social Learning Zone has been transformed into a mathematical wonderland of board games, ‘impossible’ puzzles and creative activities. Designed to challenge even the most intrepid Year 7 and Year 8 G&T students, these puzzles and games have tested their problem solving skills, logical reasoning and, above all, determination. Each week has also culminated in a Maths Challenge Team Contest requiring the students to apply their mathematical knowledge and

abilities to unfamiliar and puzzling new situations. Miss Ali, Miss Allidina and Miss Zhang have been impressed time and time again by the creativity and collaboration of the students. Well done! Particular highlights of this term have been:

• Morgan and Naa-Adei’s neck and neck chess duel.

• Shyann’s unfaltering perseverance in attempting to fit all the blocks into the impossible box.

• Aisha-Shima, Iza and Shumaya’s creative paper aeroplanes.

• Sania, Sanaa and Amani’s brilliant efforts on the Rush Hour board game.

• and, finally, the rate at which Gabriel and Abdisalam can demolish a whole pack of jaffa cakes! Miss Zhang


exploration CENTRE History, Geography, Religious Education, Sociology and Psychology

Humanities ‘A’ Levels in the Sixth Form


n the last two years, Humanities has had an exciting opportunity to teach many ‘A’ Level subjects in our budding Sixth Form: they are Psychology, Sociology, Religious Studies and, more recently, History and Geography. The students have responded really well, are enjoying their experiences and are making very good progress. Mrs Steward

It has been an exciting start to Geography, with the group growing from two to five. We have studied Rivers and Population and have already been on our first Geography Fieldtrip. Next year promises to be even better with a residential planned and topic looking at cold environments and health issues. Religious Studies enables our students to develop their interest in the study of Islam, its beliefs and practice and

Sociology is the study of society and investigates issues such as how those from differing backgrounds are more likely to turn to crime. Psychology is about understanding how and why people and animals behave and think the way they do. It is concerned with issues such as how people can kill others during war and how to treat people with depression and schizophrenia. In History we continue to study the GCSE Germany topic, delving further into its past to discover how it became a unified nation as well as how its leaders contributed to the outbreak of the Great War. Eventually, we study how Germany became a Democratic Republic, dealt with the Great Depression and handled the rise of the Nazi Party.


the life of the Prophet. Also at A2 students will do an in depth study into the topic of Religious Experience. Students have to adopt an enquiring, critical approach allowing them to reflect on and develop their own values, opinions and attitudes, in the light of their learning.

For more news about the Sixth Form go to page 10.

GCSE History Trip

During October Creative Curriculum week, Year 10 GCSE History students travelled with Mrs Steward and Mr Robertson to the Roman Baths. It was totally fascinating to be that close to history, to touch the stones that countless feet have walked over and to marvel at the amazing beauty that the Roman residents of Aquae Sulis would have seen as an everyday sight. “It was nice to learn about these things by actually going there.” (Ifra Masood). Walking along some 2000 year old tiles while gazing into the eyes of sculptured gods, the first thing you notice is the fact that everything is still standing! Not only standing, but to have a structure with all its plumbing built 2000 years ago and still running strong?! Mrs Steward

expression CENTRE

English, Modern Foreign Languages,


hat an incredible and enjoyable start to the first term in our new building! In the first half term alone we had a visit from internationally renowned author Bali Rai, presentations from well-respected STEM ambassadors and the launch of the Accelerated Reader project with Year 7. As part of their GCSE preparation, our KS4 students were visited by a number of STEM ambassadors (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics Network) during Creative Curriculum week and used the information from their sessions to gain marks in a variety of Speaking and Listening tasks that will count toward their GCSE at the end of the year. The speakers came from a number of diverse backgrounds; from engineering, managing banks, creating products at Cadbury, researching diabetes, cancer and looking at how our future will be shaped by nanoscience. It was an enjoyable experience that gave plenty of food for thought with regard to future careers, opportunities and aspirations. During Creative Curriculum week, many Year 9 students travelled to Stratford to watch the play A Tender Thing – an emotional journey

through what Romeo and Juliet’s lives might have been like. It was a great experience made even better with praise from the public about how impressed they were to see young people engaging with the classic story and the positivity and enthusiasm with which the students conducted themselves. Year 13 also enjoyed a trip to the theatre to see Macbeth at The

talked about his own background in Leicester and how he didn’t let anything get in the way of what he wanted to achieve. He read excerpts from one of his novels and met many students in the LRC at the end of the day to sign books, read students’ own stories and to talk to many about their experiences at school. It was a fantastic day, made even better by the quality of the costumes that students and staff came dressed in, inspired by their favourite literary characters. It has been an inspiring and successful first term and I am sure that the rest of the academic year will continue in the same vein. Mr M Everett Head of English

Crucible in Sheffield. It was a hugely impressive performance that will no doubt help them with their studies of Gothic Literature. Bali Rai joined us for Drop Everything and Read Day and the launch of the Accelerated Reader scheme. He


l l a H r e v o d Con ber 2012 Octo

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"I gained a lot of experience and knowledge from the residential at Condover Hall which I could use in the future."

R 7 r a e Y

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his was the first time for many of the year 7s . to leave their parents and attend a three day residential at Condover Hall in the Shropshire countryside. We departed from the academy ready to tackle any challenges we might face; both students and teachers were excited about the prospect. While at Condover Hall, students had the chance to experience the world beyond their

learning in the classroom. It was an ideal opportunity for personal development through a variety of learning experiences. Having only joined the academy in September, the trip enabled students to get to know their new classmates and to familiarise themselves with some of the staff. During the day, students took part in a range of mentally and physically chanllenging activities including archery, bivi building,

climbing, buggy building, fencing and tunnelling. All of these activities needed them to work effectively as part of a team, whilst developing their communication, problem solving, self-discipline and trust. These are skills we expect the young people to develop whilst learning at Heartlands Academy to improve their academic and interpersonal skills. Miss Brown

Class of 2012 - Celebration Evening


elebration evening on Thursday 22nd November 2012 saw our previous Year 11 welcomed back to celebrate their brilliant successes and achievements and to receive their GCSE certificates. This was also their first opportunity to see the wonderful new Heartlands Academy building.

Guest speaker for the evening was Peter Fair, Chair of Governors, who congratulated our students and paid tribute to the hard work and dedication of Mrs Jones. The evening commenced with the presentation of certificates for all students, followed by subject awards before we went on to celebrate overall successes for attendance, achievement and progress. Highest Achiever Awards were presented to Saliha Naqvi and Abdirahman Mohamud, while Ibrahim El Kundi and Sabah Nasir were awarded for Most Progress. Unfortunately, Ibrahim was unable to join us on the night, but Mrs Jones highlighted the significance of this award for him. Strength of Character Award was given to Ummar

Atif, who truly embraced the spirit of the evening. On a personal note, I felt proud to have been involved in the lives of these young people and to have been able to congratulate them. I would like to extend my thanks to all governors, staff, parents and carers who supported the evening and made it so special for the students. They thoroughly enjoyed the event; in particular the wonderful spread laid out for them in the dining hall afterwards! My best wishes to class of 2012. Thank you for making me proud. Mrs Yousaf.


imagination CENTRE Art, Drama, Music Art


iss Bibby and Miss Bailey welcomed Mr Chester into the Art department in September and he has settled in well, bringing his own artistic skills into our already very successful Art department. Year 11 Art GCSE students are now well on the way to completing their final project, based upon “Dreams and Nightmares”. Anyone who is brave enough is welcome to visit the Art department to view the students’ work, which is of an exceptionally high standard. The sky lights in the new art rooms are very popular with staff and students, as are the iMac computers, which are used every day, both in class work and in extra study periods.



r Henshaw welcomed Mr Lee into the Drama department in September and he is already involved in extra-curricular activities such as the pantomime and coursework surgeries. The pantomime – Jack and The Beanstalk is eagerly awaited and takes place on 23rd and 24th January. The cast are busy rehearsing. The title role is played by Shaheen Lindo, with Jasmine Hylton playing Princess Rose and Mr Henshaw reprising his role as the best Dame in town. Mrs Hanson has gamely volunteered to play Buttercup the Cow although, when she sees the costume, she might change her mind.



he addition to the Music department this year has come in the form of Mr Aston’s baby son, George, born on 29th November. Congratulations! Year 8, set 2 are in the middle of an exciting music project in collaboration with The University of Birmingham and Fox Hollies Special school which


will involve Heartlands students and Fox Hollies students working together to create a performance at the end of term. The new Year 7 choir performed at the Official Opening Ceremony on 7th December. Beforehand, they were very nervous about it but afterwards, agreed they were proud to have taken part! They are planning to go on tour

to some of our feeder primary schools next term. The orchestra has grown steadily this term, rehearsing every Friday after school with a really committed and talented group of musicians. Look out for the Spring Concert, on 6th March 2013 which is being organised by our Year 11 students. Mrs Hanson Head of Music

innovation CENTRE ICT, Business Studies, Design Technology, ASDAN

A Taste of Heartlands The Clatter of Knives and Forks W ow! What an exciting term for the new cohort of Year 10 catering students. It all began in Creative Curriculum week when the Executive Chef from Compass Foods came in for the day to develop the young chefs’ practical skills. This turned into a day of producing a four course gourmet meal, that included: an amazing Classic French Lemon Tart, Kiln Roasted Salmon on a Potato, Apple and Horseradish Galette, and an amazing soft boiled egg (egg shell filled with vanilla mousse and mango puree) served with Brioche soldiers. The meal was served to ten distinguished guests that included Mrs Jones, governor Noran Flynn and business partners from PricewaterhouseCooper. The presentation of the meal was second to none, and the guests were astounded by the quality and skill that had gone into the meal. Following this success the Chefs excelled again when they produced afternoon tea for the E-ACT board and Governors at Heartlands official opening day. Again, Masterchef standard was achieved; one guest said they “would not have had that standard at the Ritz.” Well done chefs for all of your hard work and dedication; you have put food on the map at Heartlands. Mrs Salter Head of DT



n 16th November, Sixth Formers visited the UK’s biggest national skills event at the NEC. At The Skills Show, students had the opportunity to: • Be inspired - watch talented, young WorldSkills UK competitors compete to become the best of the best in their chosen skills. • Have a Go and get stuck in at a range of different skills activities, from floristry and virtual welding, to beauty therapy, hospitality and music mixing. Students were provided with a wide range of information and advice on skills, potential career choices, job opportunities, qualifications and training available to them. Well done to Roda, Amaal, Olida, and Ilham (Year 12) all of whom managed to complete the Premier Inn ‘The Perfect Bed’ challenge in 14 seconds beating Mr Hussain and Miss Taylor.

"This trip has enabled me to gain more knowledge and get an insight into different career pathways that are available for me" Mariah Akhter,12HAD


Creative Curriculum Week...

of the week to the independent judging panel. After long deliberation the judges decided that ‘Perfection by MEC’ created by 12MEC were the winners of this challenging competition! Fortunately, I was part of this team and I’m very proud of our success. Rahimeen Abbas, 12MEC

Why I Like the Sixth Form the Sixth Form was a trial of concentration, determination and jubilation. We were set to complete an Apprentice-style task to design a new perfume aimed at different target audiences. We commenced with the research of our market, production and finance. Furthermore, using key design aspects, we had to create advertising materials such as: posters, business cards and a thirty-second advertisement featuring ourselves. Alongside this, we produced the scent of our perfume and formulated a business plan and a PowerPoint presentation to be given at the end

I’ve been pleasantly surprised by life at sixth form. I am currently enjoying all of my subjects and the positive and encouraging attitude displayed by the teachers is admirable. As is to be expected, the work-load is much greater than that of GCSEs, therefore you need to know how to manage your time wisely in order to keep up – but I enjoy the challenge. The atmosphere in the Sixth Form building is cosy and welcoming. There is a mutual respect between the Sixth Formers which helps maintain the sociable ambience. We even have our own drink/snack machines! I’ve noticed that the relationship between the teachers and students is not as strict, which is reflective of how we have matured as students and also as young adults. Idman Hussein, 12HAD

If you would like information about: • primary school transition

• Heartlands Academy events • parenting support programmes • community partnership work


Mrs Rachel Buckingham Community Director

Heartlands Academy No 10 Great Francis Street, Birmingham B7 4QR 0121 464 5530


Winners of Business in Partnership 2012


eartlands Academy was nominated and shortlisted for the National Business Award in recognition of the work we do with our business partners to enhance students’ opportunity for successful career pathways. PricewaterhouseCooper works closely with the academy to ensure students have the knowledge

and skills required for today’s job market. PWC supports our Creative Curriculum weeks by offering mentoring support to the Community Director, giving advice and tips about what employers look for other than formal qualifications and how students can enhance their skills beyond the curriculum. The Community Director attended a prestigious awards ceremony at the Emirates Stadium in London. All shortlisted schools and academies

were invited to the event where they met with colleagues and were able to mutually celebrate their success. The awards event was sponsored by different organisations; Heartlands Academy was sponsored by ESPO. In recognition of the work the academy does and the depth of work done to ensure students are successful Heartlands Academy were the overall winners of the Business Partnership Award 2012. Rachel Buckingham


Calendar 2012/13 Spring Term Term Starts Monday 7 January Sixth Form Open Evening Thursday 10 January Pantomime Wednesday 23 + Thursday 24 January Year 11 Parents’ Evening Thursday 31 January Half Term

Monday 18 February to Friday 22 February

Year 9 Parents Evening Thursday 14 March Sixth Form Parents’Evening Thursday 21 February Term Ends Thursday 28 March Easter Holiday Friday 29 March to Friday 12 April

Summer Term Term Starts Monday 15 April Mayday

Monday 6 May (academy closed)

Teacher day Tuesday 7 May (closed to students)

ELearning @Heartlands Academy

We have subscribed to a number of web-based learning resources to support students’ learning in all subject areas. Please visit the following websites: A collection of animated videos on a wide range of subjects. Good for learning a new concept or revising. Please see Mrs Yousaf for login details. This website has a large number of activities that you can complete, as well as practice exam questions that can help you to prepare for your exam. Please see Mrs Yousaf for login details.

Year 11 Graduation Thursday 16 May (provisional) Half Term

Monday 27 May to Friday 31 May

Year 11 Prom Friday 21 June Year 10 Parents’ Evening Thursday 27 June Summer Concert Thursday 4 July Year 7 Parents’ Evening

Thursday 11 July

Term Ends for Students Friday 19 July Teacher Days Monday 22 + Tuesday 23 July

Coming soon: GCSEPOD and the VLE. Watch this space!

Sixth Form Open Evening Thursday 10th January 2013 5:00pm - 7:00pm

“All sixth-form lessons observed were either good or outstanding” Ofsted 2012

Follow us on TWITTER @Heartlands_Acad We are now recruiting external candidates to join our Sixth Form in September 2013. A wide range of courses are available please visit our website for further details.


©December 2012 Heartlands Academy, No 10 Great Francis Street, Birmingham B7 4QR

Heartlands Academy Heartlines Newsletter issue 10 Autumn 2012  

Heartlands Academy Heartlines Newsletter issue 10 Autumn 2012

Heartlands Academy Heartlines Newsletter issue 10 Autumn 2012  

Heartlands Academy Heartlines Newsletter issue 10 Autumn 2012