The latest news from schools in the Dacorum area.
Harry Potter book night
The Cavendish School students from Hemel Hemsptead marked the very first official Harry Potter Book Night in February, when fans across the country celebrated the stories and shared their love of the books with others.
A small group of fans from Cavendish gave up their time, at very short notice, to celebrate by decorating the library with a Harry Potter theme.
A few cakes and refreshments helped create a party atmosphere and boost their creativity. The reading zone was transformed to include an ‘owlery’, ‘potions lab’ and ‘floating candles’ not to mention Harry Potter and a dementor!
Particular thanks was given to Olivia and Helena Tuff, Jonathon Smith, Caitlin Rogers, Samantha Boyall and extra helper Caitlyn who came to help from Galley Hill.
The evening coincided with National Storytelling Week when students were able to relax during their lunchbreaks while a variety of staff entertained them with a wide range of stories.
Extracts were taken from The Book Thief, Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets, The Accidental Adventurer, Moonfleet and Our Iceberg Is Melting.
The story of Ruby Bridges, the first black child to attend an all-white elementary school in southern America, prompted some deep discussion about racism and prejudice from some of the younger students.
Overall it was an enjoyable week for staff and students alike. Storytelling sessions are being set up as a regular feature and Harry Potter Book Night is pencilled in for next year.
Gazette readers needed to help buy gym equipment to improve child fitness
It is estimated that by 2025, 70 million children under five will be overweight or obese if current trends continue.
In the past 30 years childhood obesity has more than doubled in children and quadrupled in adolescents.
The good news is that obesity and its related diseases are largely preventable through healthy eating habits and regular physical activity.
And Gazette readers are being offered temporary free gym membership to help in the fight against obesity.
Let’s Move for a Better World is a worldwide campaign from March 2 - 22, initiated by Technogym, one of the equipment suppliers at Sportspace gyms in Hemel Hemsptead and Berkhamsted.
They want to get more people in the local community to be more active, and ultimately to tackle childhood obesity.
Let’s Move for a Better World is a global competition with a national element. So the UK gym with the highest number of ‘move’ points will be able to select a local school of their choice which will then receive £15,000 worth of Technogym metabolic exercise equipment.
Sportspace Hemel Hempstead and Berkhamsted are both participating and need help to accumulate ‘moves’ to be in with a chance of winning the gym equipment for a local school.
They will have dedicated machines in both gyms that are connected to the challenge via the Internet. When a user is logged in and using the equipment, their ‘moves’ will contribute to the total scored for that club.
To support the challenge to win £15,000 for one of our local schools, Sportspace is offering Gazette readers free three day gym passes from March 2 - 22 between the hours of 10am - 4pm. All you need to do is email firstname.lastname@example.org
Dragons Den challenge
A group of eight students from Adeyfield School in Hemel Hemsptead have raised more than £2,000 to buy a horse called Codey for Gaddesden Riding School for the Disabled.
The students have been taking part in the Dacorum Dragons Apprentice Challenge since September
The challenge requires students to run their own business in order to turn £100 into £1,000 for charity.
The students decided to become event organisers and organised a number of events that brought together the local and wider community to raise the required money and also to raise awareness of the charity and their school.
Events inclued a Harry Potter Film Club, a quiz night and a Christmas wrapping service.
The quiz night alone raised £1,039 and although that meant the £1,000 had not only been reached but exceeded, the students didn’t want to stop there as they knew the horse they were raising money for would cost £1,250.
So the students carried on with their Christmas wrapping service and chose somewhere with a heavy footfall and negotiating to have a stall for free in the Marlows shopping centre. This is where they raised the remainder of the money needed in order to pay for Codey.
In total the students raised £2,223 and Codey is now enjoying his new life at Gaddesden where he is part of the team that helps make disabled childrens’ lives better.
Headteacher Scott Martin said: “One of the greatest pleasures of being a teacher is being amazed by students.
“The money raised by the students participating in the Dacorum Dragons Den Challenge is one such example.
“This group of students has shown how much can be achieved with time, effort and perserverance. We are all proud of the money they have raised for such a worthy cause. I hope that this is enough to see them into the final at Shendish Manor.”
The Year 12 students, who are all studying Business or Workskills, are Chloe Hall, Danielle Biddle, Sandie Clark, Bradley Smith, Jessica Fitzjohn, Mitchell Bagley, Marian Mandrila and Nicole Curson.
Learning about university
Year 9 students from Kings Langley School went to the University of Hertfordshire to take part in one of their Pathfinder days designed to provide awareness of the many opportunities available, and forms part of an outreach programme offered by the university in order to inform and inspire students.
It is offered in Year 9 as this is the start of students focusing on their option and possible career choices.
The intention is to help guide students through the decisions and challenges that they face throughout their educational journey and to raise aspirations in new and interesting ways.
Students were given a short tour of the De Havilland campus which included the Learning Resource Centre, the Law Building, Sports Centre and the Halls of Residence.