Seaford Qualifies for Elite Show Jumping National Championships

Photo 2webOn Sunday 4th February the Seaford Equestrian show jumping team were out competing at Felbridge near East Grinstead in the NSEA 1.00m Elite Show Jumping inter schools qualifier for the South East. Over twenty schools in the area were competing for this prestigious qualification. Lucy Sanders, Seaford’s Equestrian Team Manager said: “The Seaford team was made up of Olivia Macdonald, Jessie Schute, Beanie Bradley and Flora James and having achieved good steady clear rounds in the previous class, but remaining unplaced, we realised that only the fastest clears would secure a prize. After much planning and studying the course trying to find the tightest lines to the fences we were ready to jump.Photo 1web
All four girls rode brilliantly with clear and fast times which were thrilling to watch and and I was delighted with their high standard of riding. Despite trying hard no other school was able to match us meaning that not only were we the top school in West Sussex but we won the class over all and qualified for the Elite Show Jumping National Championships at the Hickstead All England Show Ground in August.  Thank you to the parents for their support and to the riders for such a fantastic result for Seaford!”

Sixth Formers attend English Lecture Days

English students james and Rosie with John McRaeTowards the end of last term, some Year 12 and 13 students studying A Level English Literature attended Lecture Days on “Frankenstein” and “The Handmaid’s Tale” organised by Sovereign Education in Central London.

English Teacher Susan Roberts reported on the trip for us.

Not only were these informative and a great way to revise the two texts, but the days gave a taste of what academic university life would be like. The venue was large and packed. The 4 lectures on each day were 45 minutes long, with students expected to make their own notes. However, perhaps the most important part of the learning process was about the lecturers themselves.

All were academics, many from Russell Group universities including Warwick and Nottingham. However, what was fascinating was the diversity of presentations. One on “The Handmaid’s Tale” was engaging, interesting, informative and perfectly pitched. The most entertaining of the presentations came from a lecture on Exploration and Discovery in Frankenstein, where after a somewhat awkward beginning the lecturer managed to transform his presentation into a totally compelling lecture, worthy of the rapturous round of applause he received at the end. He even apologised for the beginning of the lecture.

What did we learn from the experience? Probably not a great deal than we didn’t already know about the texts, which in itself, was reassuring. However, lessons were learned about the importance of presentation, planning and delivery, and that Mrs Doy is an amazing driver!

And finally, that passion and love for your subject should never be condemned but should be valued and cherished.

Students take on Charlton Chase South Coast night hike!

Charlton Chase Photos 1
Over the weekend some of our students participated in the Charlton Chase South Coast night navigation competition which was held in Shoreham and the surrounding countryside.

In order to test the water of this new location, Seaford, like many other Colleges, opted to enter just two teams this year, with 31 teams in total competing.

As a school we had a mixed success with one of our teams finishing in one of the top ten places and the other team walking a little bit further than they needed to; after becoming somewhat geographically challenged!

However, both teams performed exceptionally well in muddy, wet and slippery conditions; with some team members indicating that they would like to do it all again next year!

 

Rugby legend Shaun Edwards puts Seaford players through their paces

The boys did alright We were incredibly honoured that Shaun Edwards OBE was one of our guest speakers at our Annual Sports Dinner almost two weeks ago, and grateful when he also agreed to take a training session with a group of our rugby players.

Shaun made his name in Rugby League playing for Wigan, England and Great Britain. He won 8 Challenge Cups and 3 World Club Championships and was voted Man of Steel in 1990, before switching codes for a hugely successful coaching career in Rugby Union. 10 successful years as Head Coach at Wasps led to his current role as Assistant Coach for Wales and the Defence Coach on the 2009 Lions tour of South Africa.

Shaun visited us on 12th January, and along with Anya Shrubsole MBE, was one of our two guest speakers at our Annual Sports Dinner. This is an annual fundraising event to raise money for Seaford Sport which involved auctions, raffles, games, and Q&A’s with our guests. It was a fantastic evening, enjoyed by all, but before the evening began, Shaun took a two hour training session with a group of our senior rugby players.

Continue reading

First Race for Devizes to Westminster hopefuls

Ben, Nell, Cameron, Daniel Last year was the first year that a number of Seaford students took on the gruelling Devizes to Westminster Canoe Race, an intense 125 mile paddle over 4 days, ending at Westminster Bridge in London. It’s a huge challenge that requires months of endurance training, and huge mental focus.

Inspired by last year’s paddlers, this year Seaford has a larger number of pupils who are looking to take on the challenge. Once again, Charles Lunt and Bill Marks, who trained last year’s pupils, have kindly offered to take on their training.

Continue reading

Chris Adams awarded special England cap

Chris Adams England capChris Adams, the Head of Cricket at Seaford College, attended a very special dinner at Lord’s during the Spring term. Having played for England in five Test matches and five One Day Internationals, he was invited to the home of cricket for a unique assembly of all past and present England players.

The guest list spanned many generations of men and women’s players, from those representing England in the 1950s, to those playing for England today. More than 30 current and former captains were at the dinner and it was an evening for sharing memories, swapping stories and taking pride in wearing the Three Lions.

“It was an incredible night and I was amazed by how many legends of the game were at the dinner”, said Mr Adams. “It was lovely to catch up with so many people I had got to know when I was playing professionally but hadn’t seen for a number of years.”

The evening gave all the players a chance to discuss and share stories about their experiences of playing for England. “My table was very special with Nasser Hussain on it who gave me my Test debut,” said Mr Adams. “Jason Roy was also on my table and I had the privilege of giving Jason his first professional contract at Surrey. And it was Jason’s job, as the current England player on our table to present us with the caps we were given to celebrate the evening. It was an incredibly special occasion and I will remember it for ever”.

 

Children’s Author Ali Sparkes inspires Prep School pupils

Ali Sparkes reading to the Prep SchoolChildren’s author Ali Sparkes spent a whole day at the Prep School during the Spring term, inspiring the pupils to write stories of their own.

Ali’s first stand-alone novel, Frozen In Time, won the Blue Peter Book of the Year Award in 2010 and her books, including the SWITCH series, have been translated into many languages from French to Japanese, Polish to Korean. Her books are pacy, funny reads, and this came across in two engaging presentations, one to Years 3, 4 and 5, and another to years 6, 7 and 8.

Ali really involved the pupils in the presentations. In her first talk she went into depth about how she became a writer, in a very interactive way, and in the second presentation she ran a Genius Quiz, to find out the potential child geniuses in the room, as the main character of her book, Carjacked was a child genius. To the horror of the teachers, she then repeated the exercise with them.

Ali Sparkes talking to the Prep School

 

After singing books for the pupils, Ali then ran a workshop with some of Seaford Prep School’s keenest young writers. She spoke about the importance of the cover, blurb and first line to get readers hooked. After asking the pupils to vote on the cover, blurb and first line of four of her books, she split them into teams. She challenged them to come up with their own story idea, and come up with a title, blurb and first line. She encouraged them to focus on gripping the reader from the start. They then voted on each others ideas, and the winner was Human Robot. But all teams came up with interesting concepts, especially given the amount of time to work on them.

Ali Sparkes takes a workshop with keen young Seaford writers

Ali was very impressed with the pupils, but had special praise for the winning idea. “The first line was very gripping, it really pulled you in, that’s why I voted for that one.”

Eleanor Jones, Seaford’s Gifted and Talented Co-ordinator, thought that Ali was fantastic at inspiring the pupils. “I had read a couple of books of Ali’s and so was delighted to have her come and talk to all the pupils today, she was wonderful, as full of fun, suspense and excitement as her books, we laughed, we held our breath, we ‘ahhh’d ‘all the way through her readings…fantastic!”

Ali Sparkes signing books for Prep School pupils

 

Seaford College set for cricket season

Seaford College during cricket seasonThe sun is shining, the smell of freshly cut grass is in the air and the County Championship cricket season has started today, which means the Seaford cricket season is just around the corner.

Chris Adams, the Head of Cricket at Seaford College, is already planning for the start of the season Continue reading

Seaford’s paddler’s making waves

Over the spring term, Seaford’s young kayaker’s have taken part in a number of races as they look to improve their skills.

Kayaking Spring Term

Starting in March, Seaford entered two K2’s in a 17.5 mile race from Newbury to Aldmarston Wharf, with a return leg. Ethan and Evie finished in 3 hours and 21 minutes, followed by Izzy and Henry 27 minutes later. It was a tough course, trying to avoid oncoming, faster boats on the return leg, and strong, blustery head winds really hampered progress.

Charles Lunt, kayaking trainer, was very pleased with the paddler’s. “It is great to see the progress that everyone has made and the determination of every paddler. It is also interesting to see Seaford College’s name alongside some of the DW ‘old boys’ such as Churchers, Cranleigh, LWC and Marlborough but also interesting to see Seaford featured in the same breath as the likes of Eton, Radley, Tonbridge and Heathfield, and beating some of them!”

Kayaking Spring Term

The following week, the teams raced 19 miles from Reading to Marlow, their first race on the Thames. This one was a mass start, with 50 boats starting together, and over 200 boats competing in total. Seaford entered 3 boats, although for the third boat, Seaford joined forces with Heathfield School because each team had lost a member due to injury.  All 3 boats finished within 12 minutes of each other – Ethan and Evie completed the course in 3 hours 11 minutes, followed by Henry and Cally in 3 hours 13 minutes and Izzy and Franny (Heathfield) in 3 hours 23 minutes.

Kayaking on the River Thames

“All of this was achieved despite dropping a paddle into a weir, a first outing with a new team mate, split starts, heavy rain at the beginning and paddling past weir flows for the first time so a fantastic achievement by all the paddlers,” said Charles.

Last weekend, they then had a gruelling 23 mile, 35 portages paddle from Pewsey to Newbury. On this paddle they took in, for the first time, the infamous Bruce Tunnel – a 5m wide, 1/2km long unlit tunnel under the Savernake Forest – and the energy sapping 10 locks to be portaged over 5 miles between Wootton Rivers and Crofton.

Kayaking Spring Term

 

“All the boats did really well finishing in very respectable times and towards the mid-table in their classes with both mixed K2s finishing just over a minute apart despite Cally having to paddle with a broken paddle for 2 miles before it could be changed!” said Charles. “The very new partnership (only their second outing) paddled well together, managing to beat the other Heathfield crews who have been together since September! All paddlers finished very tired but in excellent spirits,” said Charles Lunt. “They are certainly embracing the school motto, Ad Alta!”

The teams are going to be entered as the inaugural Seaford College crews for the 125 mile Devizes to Westminster canoe race over the Easter weekend, and we’ll have more kayaking updates over the coming weeks.

 

 

Looking back on a fantastic term

mansion and daffodilsWith the Spring Term ending today and everyone heading off for the Easter holidays, we thought it would be a good time to have a look back at some of the highlights since the start of the year.

So we have put together a video reflecting on the Spring Term here at Seaford College for you to watch and enjoy.

We hope everyone has a great Easter break!

Pirates of Penzance a huge success

Pirates of Penzance

Seaford held four performances of Gilbert and Sullivan’s Pirates of Penzance, kicking off with an open dress rehearsal and then 3 nights of performances.

The show was fun and energetic throughout, with fantastic turns from the principals and the supporting cast. Sara Reynolds, Director of Performing Arts at Seaford, was thrilled with how the show went.

Pirates of Penzance Policeman“I couldn’t be more proud. The work ethic was incredible from the students and the staff that were involved and the outcome was more than I could have hoped for. It is an enormous task taking on a show like the Pirates of Penzance, with a cast of over sixty students and a back stage team and everybody put in a huge amount of work. It was a great learning curve for everyone involved and I think we entertained our audiences which is what we set out to do.”

Zachary McArthur as the Major General in Pirates of Penzance

Two of Seaford’s Senior students, Zachary McArthur and Yolanda Gumpo, spoke to us about taking part in the show. “I was so proud to be part of the production,” said Zachary. “I was delighted to get the role of Major General Stanley because it was a fun part to play and enabled me to expand my acting skills in front of an audience. We got an amazing reaction from the audiences and that was wonderful after all the hard work that had gone into the production.”

Yolanda Gumpo in Pirates of PenzanceYolanda found it a great experience. “The cast ranged from Year 7’s to Year 13’s and it was great to work with students from across the school. As one of the senior cast members I enjoyed working with the younger students and helping them backstage and it was a real team effort.”

“It was an amazing performance last night – so energetic and funny. Well done. We also loved the seaside nibbles in the candy stripe bags” was one comment on Seaford’s Facebook page.

Young Seaford student in Pirates of PenzanceWe can’t wait for the next big Seaford production!

 

FastNet tournament a huge success

Fast net Blog 3Seaford College played host to their annual end-of-season FastNet netball tournament last week and once again the competition was a huge success.

FastNet is a faster-paced form of the sport that was launched in 2008 and features music, shorter games, rolling substitutions and powerplays where double points can be scored.

Seaford College had five teams playing Continue reading

Memorable Ski Trip to the French Alps

Ski Trip Blog 1With Easter on the horizon many people will be packing their salopettes, ski’s and goggles and heading to the slopes.

At the start of the year Seaford College took students from Years 9 to Years 13 Continue reading

Seaford Polo team triumphant again

The winning Seaford Polo teamThe Seaford Polo team have claimed their second win in two weeks.

Playing up a division, Seaford’s team of Isabel Anderson, Andrea Aranda and Martha Crosdil won their section of the Senior School Ladies Tournament at Continue reading

Rugby 7s expert Dai Rees trains Seaford Under 18s

Dai Rees watching Seaford rugby 7s trainingAhead of the start of the Rosslyn Park 7s rugby tournament this week, the Seaford College Under 18s squad were joined for a training session by an
expert in the art of 7s rugby. Dai Rees is the Head of High Performance for the Hong Kong Rugby Union side, but he has also coached the Welsh 7s national squad. Dai was at Seaford College last week Continue reading

Former Seafordian returns to test innovative new computer system

Alex Macpherson and Seaford studentAlex Macpherson, a former Seafordian, is currently in his third year at Warwick University, studying Computer Science. He recently returned to Seaford for a research visit as part of his dissertation project.

Alex has to design and implement a project of his own choice for his dissertation, and he has focused on the education technology market, and has been developing a system that’s similar to one that Seaford currently uses, the Firefly system. We interviewed Alex about his project and his time at Seaford, which you can watch in the video Continue reading

Seaford choristers head to Voice in a Million

Music Block entrance fisheye viewOn Wednesday 8th March, Seaford College will take forty of their junior choristers to the SSE Arena, Wembley Continue reading

Seaford celebrate victory in first ever polo tournament

Seaford players during one of their matchesSeaford College performed exceptionally well at the SUPA (Schools and Universities Polo Association) Senior Schools Arena Nationals polo tournament, held at the Rugby Polo Club on Sunday 5th March. This is the biggest tournament for schools in the UK during winter, with over 50 schools taking part, including some of the biggest schools in the polo world.

This was the first ever polo tournament that Seaford College has taken part in, and both teams rose to the challenge, Continue reading

Seaford celebrates World Book Day 2017

Seaford College enjoyed a whole week of activities to celebrate World Book Day, capped off with the new Prep School Head, Alastair Brown, joining in with the costume efforts by dressing up as the famous red and white-striped explorer on World Book Day.

We kicked off the week with a Continue reading

Happy World Book Day!

Happy World Book Day from everyone at Seaford College! Come back tomorrow to find out more about the amazing things we’ve been up to over the whole week!

 

Buy your tickets for The Pirates of Penzance

Blog ImageShiver Me Timbers… it is time for you to book your tickets for Seaford College’s forthcoming production of The Pirates of Penzance.

This swashbuckling adventure Continue reading

The Magic of Motivation at Seaford

magician 3We are all looking for that magical key to success. How do we become successful? What motivates us to become successful and what it is success? Continue reading

Seaford Rugby and Netball tour Race Night this Saturday

Race Night LandscapeThis Saturday evening (4th March), as part of some fundraising for this summer’s New Zealand and Australia rugby and netball tour, Seaford College are holding Continue reading

Seaford’s scientists broaden knowledge before half term

Sixth Form Students at Physics LectureJust before half term, there was a flurry of activity in Seaford’s Science Department.

On Thursday evening a group of Sixth Form Physics students enjoyed a stimulating talk on black holes and galaxy formation at Sussex University delivered by Professor Peter Thomas. The students learned how the study of quasars and their associated radio jets provide strong evidence for the existence of supermassive black holes at the centre of galaxies.

Friday saw a group of our most able Year 10 scientists attend Continue reading

Students take on the bike trails of Surrey Hills

Seaford pupils on Surrey Hills mountain biking tripOn Saturday the 11th of February, pupils from years 9, 10 and 11 took part in one of the regular Outdoor Education Department Mountain Bike trips to the Surrey Hills.

The riders braved the freezing cold and snow to tackle descents of “Supernova”, “Rad Lane”, “Curly Wurly” and “Barry Knows Best” trails as well as the punishing climbs in between.

This was a difficult days riding in poor conditions with deep puddles and thick mud that tested all the riders skills as well as motivation. Needless to say, no one was deterred and all those that took part tackled the trails with great enthusiasm despite wet feet and numb fingers with all agreeing that despite the driving snow and low temperature, all had come away better riders.

Even the Surrey Hills regulars commented on how the thick mud on familiar trails helped to focus technique.

The Outdoor Education department runs Mountain Biking sessions for all abilities on the Schools own purpose built skills trails on Tuesday afternoons for years 11/12 and Thursday afternoons for years 9/10 as well as regular weekend trips to local mountain Biking hotspots such as the Surrey Hills and Swinley Forest.

All students regularly taking part in Mountain Biking are required to bring their own bikes however the Outdoor Education department owns 2 “Fat” Mountain Bikes available for activity taster sessions.

Seaford pupil Will Greaves, in year 9, has been filming clips at Seaford’s Mountain Biking club, on the schools very own mountain bike trails, built by Seaford students. He put together a nice little montage of what they’ve been up to lately.