E25’s final HUMAN expedition is called ‘Three Cheers for Trees’.

For our final product we will be creating a piece of graffiti artwork which encompasses the messages and learning of this expedition. For example, deforestation, the rainforest and the importance of trees in our environment due to the services they provide.

The artwork will be on a wall in our school (cheers Gywn!) and every child in E25 will make their mark in the product.  The inspiration for the final product came from our anchor text – Dr Seuss’s The Lorax. We watched this film during Immersion Week and saw the mural dedicated to the trees which are loved so dearly. I’m sure ours will look even better! Related image

So that we could create beautiful work we are very pleased to be working alongside an expert, Craig, who has been running design and practical sessions with the students to create the image and build technique with the spray paints. The first group to experience the practical session was E2 and it’s safe to say they had a great time!

I think the students found that using spray paints is harder than it looks – Craig was able to explain to the group how the paint would react differently when sprayed close/far away from the surface and the difference in the outcome when spraying quickly and slowly. The students responded well to his advice and they were clearly writing their names in no time, he was very impressed!

 

E1 and E3 will have their practical sessions on Monday 24th June. It is advised they come to school in clothes they do not mind getting paint on as it is permanent – just in case!

X-Block Blues Practice

Here are the audio soundtracks for each part of each X-block group’s blues song so far. Use this to play along to so that you know you have the right rhythm and speed – make sure you’re listening to the right group!

E1 Blues guitar riff: 

 

E1 Blues piano part:

 

E2 Blues guitar riff: 

 

E2 Blues piano 12 bar blues: 

 

E2 Blues voice part: 

 

E3 12 bar blues piano: 

 

If your group is playing the ‘coffee’ rhythm, make sure it fits in with the soundtrack. The ‘coff’ part should fall on each beat of the bar (1,2,3,4).

Likewise if you are playing the ‘ten-to-ten-to’ rhythm – however – here the ‘ten’ should fall on each beat of the bar (1,2,3,4).

See below for the 12 bar blues and help with the rhythm.

This term, E25 are learning about nutrition in one of their three X Block sessions each week.  We have looked at what constitutes a balanced diet, discussed the components of the Eatwell Guide and the nutrients present in different foods.

Image result for eatwell guide

This week, students have been working in pairs or groups of three to plan how they will cook a plate of food which meets requirements of their choosing; for example, a vegetarian starter, a healthy dessert or a free-from main course.  

Each group have a meal planner document which will be signed off by me on Google Docs before they can cook.  These MUST be completed before the session, otherwise they will not be able to cook.

The meals will be cooked in their normal X Block session with me on either Monday or Thursday morning.  

Your child will have been allocated responsibility within their group to provide certain ingredients of their choosing.  Please could you support them in ensuring that these are purchased in good time so they can bring them into school on either Monday or Thursday for their X Block session (they know which groups they are in and which day they are cooking on).

If you would like to contact me to discuss arrangements for your son or daughter, please contact me at school by phone or by email on jtownson@xpeast.org

Thanks in advance for your support.

Fabulous Dancing from 7X1

All the hard work since January has paid off! 7X1 showed courage and craftsmanship & quality whilst performing this dance routine to the rest of year 7. This has been achieved by showing determination and the HOWLs, with many students never having danced before – a superb effort from everyone.

A special mention to Lexi – fantastic gymnastic skills – and a massive appreciation to Sharna who has worked with these students to teach them this routine.

 

E25 have been working hard creating original choreography to accompany a piece of poetry for their Presentation of Learning next week.  The poem is called ‘Let’s Unite’ and was originally written in Pashto, although we are using a translation from the Poetry Translation Centre.

Here is a taster of the first few lines of the poem for you – written in the original language of course – we can’t ruin the surprise!

راځئ چې یو شو

په دی ښایسته دنیا کې
په دی یوه دنیا کې
مونږه جدا جدا یو
مونږه تنها تنها یو
لکه د لاس د ګوتو
لکه د لمر د وړانګو
زمونږه پښو نه لاندې

Students considered the imagery in the poem, identified the patterns of repetition that we could build on and used Kind, Specific and Helpful critique to hone their ideas into movements which enhance the spoken text.  Last week we even had an extra special guest in the Civic Mayor of Doncaster, Councillor Majid Khan, who witnessed rehearsals during a tour of XP East.

I can’t wait to see the finished product when all three X Block groups bring their work together.  The students have taken the lead in idea generation and directing, using the skills and techniques we have been studying in Drama since the beginning of term.  I’m really proud of what they have achieved so far, well done E25!

‘Exceptional!’

That’s how I described today’s Remembrance Day service at our school this morning.

The event acted as the ‘final product’ for the expedition ‘Over the top!’ (for parents who are new to XP East, every expedition has a final product that culminates in a Presentation of Learning in front of a wider audience).

In my closing remarks I emphasised that our Y7s have been with us for just 9 weeks.

That’s. 9. Weeks.

The people who witnessed today’s event (including myself) were staggered by what they saw: 45 minutes of 11 and 12 year olds reading extracts of their creative writing, reciting poetry, explaining military links from WW1 to modern day Science and performing scenes related to their work in Drama – in front of 250 people. The transitions and movements between the 20 plus segments during the service were all conducted by students. There was no one hidden behind the curtain whispering ‘NEXT!’ or ‘GIRLS YOU’RE UP’. They pulled it off due to the hours of preparation that went on throughout the week.

The event embodied the work of expeditionary learning – drawing on disciplines from different subjects and linking them together via a guiding question, combined with developing the character of students.

What I saw today was nothing short of exceptional.

Well done Year 7s and what a start to life at XP East!

That’s Not My Name!

Year 7 have been learning basic rhythms and how to play these on instruments in X-block music.

They are learning how to play ‘That’s not my name’ by The Ting Tings.

Each child will learn the rhythm and notes on the guitar, bass guitar, keyboard and drums to create a whole class performance of the song.

Here’s the link to the music resource page. Pupils are welcome to book a music practice room on Fridays if they want to practice this song using the school instruments.

Maybe we’ll see XP East pupils in the UK Top 40 in the future!

Here’s Laicey, Lexi, Zak, Kristian and Florence in action!

 

Freeze frame thoughts in X Block

C24 and C25 have been developing their skills in freeze frames in X Block Drama.  We have discussed use of height, proxemics, physicality and more recently, used thought tracking to provide subtext.  Here, Ralph and James chose a title for their freeze frame and each directed a small group.  They then shared the freeze frame with the class, explaining the decisions they made and allowing each character to speak their thoughts to the audience.

What might the characters have been thinking in the court scene and the robbery?