Seaford’s Biomedical Society

Beccy Weir This year we have started up a new Biomedical Society for our Sixth Form students who are interested in medicine, veterinary, biology, pharmaceuticals, nursing and the wider research among these areas. We meet every other week for 2 hours with a range of activities for the students to explore and expand their knowledge and interests.

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Be a Seaford Scientist (BASS)

Be a Seaford ScientistFollowing the introduction of the required practicals into the new Science GCSE specification, we have introduced ‘Becoming a Seaford Scientist’ (BASS) at KS3. These are a set of lessons that occur once a fortnight throughout the year. Our Year 7 and 8 students are currently taking part in these lessons.

The focus is to improve the students’ ability to work together and problem solve practical tasks by working as a part of a group with as little teacher input as possible. The skills focus on the ‘How Science Works’ understanding, which now has an increased focus in the new GCSE.

BASS also fits in with the whole school strategy of fostering independent learning, as it allows pupils to work together to overcome different scientific problems with as little help from the teacher as possible. BASS enables students to develop communication and group skills work.

Phillip Whelpton (Assistant Head of Year 11 and Head of KS3 Science) tells us: “The required practical makes up 15% of the new GCSE. By introducing BASS into our KS3 curriculum it will enable the students to have the key scientific skills and knowledge going into their GCSE years”.

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Meet our Head of Science

seb d'agarOur Director of Studies and Head of Science, Seb d’Agar, is also a Houseparent to our Prep School students.

Seb is now in his 7th year at Seaford and plays an important role in our academic strategy. A fine compere, he is also a member of the Seaford Chapel Choir.

What is your favourite science field to teach and why?
As a Biologist it has to be evolution. Exploring the diversity of life on Earth over the past 3 billion years is always eye opening to students at any age. They love treading in Darwin’s footsteps, learning about adaptations and natural selection. Continue reading

Real Tennis at the Queen’s Club

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Returning to defend his title, Gus James narrowly missed out on claiming the National Schools Real Tennis Award today as he partnered Henry Sunderland at the Queen’s Club, London yesterday. Matthew Pitteway reported: “Gus won the event last year when he partnered Monty (leaver 2018) and looked in good form in the first match – a fairly comfortable win over the Oratory School. The second game against Wellington was another fairly comfortable win and we seemed on course to win our division with some ease.

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Our last league match against a youthful St Paul’s team started promisingly as we won the first game. However, some excellent play by their pair and some poor shot selections and executions by Gus and Henry saw us lose pretty quickly 6-1 (although four of the games went to deuce).

We qualified as runner up in our division and played Canford in the semi-final. We played superbly and won that game comfortably 6-4 setting up a final against ………. St Paul’s (again).
We had high hopes that the final would bring out the best in our pair and the nerves in our opponents but that was not the case and (like the earlier game) St Paul’s won the final 6-1.

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Well done to both Gus and Henry for playing so well and getting so close today. We were one of the youngest pairs at the tournament and this bodes well for the future!”

 

Training is underway for the Devizes to Westminster Kayaking Marathon

Training for the Devizes to WestminsterLast Sunday the Year 12 Devizes to Westminster Kayak team had their first race – a 6-mile Hare & Hound race. With blustery winds and choppy waters, paddle control proved difficult.

The Seaford College students have decided to take on this huge and extreme challenge (125 miles from Devizes to Westminster over the 4-day Easter weekend) to raise £75K for their friend, Ellie Holt (year 13) to have life changing treatment.

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Seaford Sevens

Seaford 7sWe hosted our annual Rugby 7s festival at the weekend and the event was a huge success, with sixteen teams from schools across the country coming to play.

Ahead of the event, Head of Rugby at Seaford College, Dan Falvey, spoke about the really high quality of teams that were coming. A number were returning teams, including Hurst who were coming to defend their title, but there were also some teams who were attending for the first time. Continue reading

Seaford’s Netball Coach selected to play for England

Natalie Miller, photographed at our Annual Sports Dinner with Pam Cookey and fellow Seaford netball coaches, Blaire Farrant and Bronwen JamesNatalie Miller, Seaford’s Netball Coach, has been selected for the England Indoor Nets Ladies squad for the Indoor World Championships in South Africa later this year.

Natalie, who was also part of the squad in 2016 when they won Gold in the World Championships in New Zealand, told us that she’s: “Over the moon! The secret is finally out. I can’t wait to represent my country again and go to South Africa to retain our title in August”.

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Stunning Seaford College in the Snow – Drone Footage

Seaford College in the snow

Seaford College in the snow

Lavington Park, Petworth, is the home of Seaford College. The grounds looked stunning yesterday in the snow. Thank you to Lewis Morton for this spectacular drone video.

Seaford’s situated in over 450 acres of listed parkland at the foot of the South Downs.  This video shows our world class sporting facilities (under the snow!) include a golf course, rugby pitches, all weather astro, tennis courts, netball courts, a swimming pool, football pitches, clay pigeon range & the Johnson Centre, Seaford’s new Performing Arts & Sports centre.  The Johnson Centre has a fitness suite, indoor climbing wall, dance studio, spin studio & a performance training gym as well as a performing arts centre.

https://www.seaford.org/open-day-form/

 

Reading in the Library for World Book Week

Girls 1-webSeaford is celebrating World Book Week with a full week of activities to encourage a love of books and reading.   Students from our Prep School wanted to share their favourite book and make recommendations to other students.  We hope this video gives you some ideas for your next book to read.  Happy World Book Week!

Here’s a video of their recommendations:

 

 

 

Seaford College presents The Sound of Music!

The Sound of Music Poster ThumbnailWe are delighted to announce the details of Seaford College’s forthcoming production The Sound of Music.

The pupils are well into rehearsals of what is bound to be another spectacular Seaford show. The cast involves students from years 3-13, and the show will be the first of its kind in our new Performing Arts space in the Johnson Centre. Continue reading

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!

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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.

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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.

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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