Toot Hill School wins the BP Ultimate STEM Challenge competition at the Science Museum

Toot Hill School wins the BP Ultimate STEM Challenge competition at the Science Museum

Three students from Toot Hill School in Bingham, Nottinghamshire won the BP Ultimate STEM Challenge competition at an event today at the Science Museum in London. For the second consecutive year, BP, STEMNET and the Science Museum launched the nationwide schools competition, which challenges 11-14 year-old students to test their Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths (STEM) skills by tackling real-world energy problems. The competition was developed as a result of ground-breaking research conducted by King’s College London, the research partner in BP’s Enterprising Science programme. The research shows that despite 70 percent of school children saying that they ‘learn interesting things in science’ and that ‘scientists make a difference in the world’, only around 15 percent aspire to be a scientist. The Ultimate STEM Challenge aims to get young people excited about STEM, encourage them to continue studying STEM subjects and to pursue STEM careers. According to EngineeringUK, at all levels of education, the UK does not have the current capacity or the required rate of growth needed to meet the forecast demand for skilled engineers and technicians by 2022. Mary Sowter part of the winning team, spoke about what it was like to win this year’s BP Ultimate STEM Challenge. She said: I can’t believe it. When I found out we were going to London I was so excited, and to have won has topped off an amazing day. I’ve learnt so much from seeing the other schools’ projects, and today has really inspired me to take part in more STEM challenges in the future.” Team member, Jack Kellas, added: “It’s fantastic, all our hard work has paid...
Mini Twitchers Do Their Bit for the Birds

Mini Twitchers Do Their Bit for the Birds

On a mission and with binoculars in hand, children at a day nursery in Lowdham were thrilled to take part in the annual Big School’s Birdwatch organised by RSPB. Children from Alphabet House Day Nursery Lowdham on Gunthorpe Road counted as many birds as they possibly could within an hour and made a note of what they saw, contributing to the world’s biggest schools wildlife survey. This is part of The Royal Society for the Protection of Birds’ campaign to bring children closer to nature. Kelly Bell is the nursery manager at Alphabet House Day Nursery Lowdham. She says: “ “The children absolutely love being outdoors and spending time in our allotment so taking part in the Big School’s Birdwatch was the perfect fit for us! They were thrilled to show off their observation talents and spotted a range of birds around the nursery. “At Alphabet House, we encourage outdoor activities an enriching part of the learning process because of the way it promotes observation and social skills, as well as fostering a relationship between our children and the natural world.” The RSPB’s Big Schools’ Birdwatch is now in its 15th year and the survey helps to track numbers of birds on school grounds, offering insight to conservationists as to which species are doing well. Additionally, children learn a great deal about the natural environment and the animals within it. Alphabet House Day Nursery Lowdham on Gunthorpe Road is in a rural location, yet convenient too as it is just off the A6097 and next to the train station. Occupying a beautiful Georgian house with car parking and a lovely...
New Headmaster appointed at Loughborough Grammar School

New Headmaster appointed at Loughborough Grammar School

Duncan Byrne has been appointed as the new Headmaster of Loughborough Grammar School. The current Second Master of Cheltenham College will take up his appointment at the independent boys’ school at the start of the summer term. He succeeds Paul Fisher, who is retiring having led the school since 1998. Duncan was educated at Dulwich College and graduated in 1995 with Honours in Modern and Medieval Languages from Trinity College Cambridge, where he was a Choral Scholar. He will bring with him wide ranging experience in independent schools, including boys’, mixed and boarding environments, from his current position and previous posts at Colfe’s School, Whitgift School, and Haberdashers’ Aske’s Boys’ School where he was Assistant Head. Duncan is married to Marie-Claire and has two sons. Loughborough Grammar School was founded in 1495 and is one of four schools in the Loughborough Endowed Schools Foundation, alongside Loughborough High School, Our Lady’s Convent School and Fairfield Preparatory School. The schools are based on two neighbouring sites in the university...
Chance for local schools to win helicopter visit

Chance for local schools to win helicopter visit

Nottingham Hospitals Charity has launched a fundraising competition for local schools, with a visit from an air ambulance as the prize for the three schools that raise the most money. The initiative aims to engage primary and secondary schools in Nottinghamshire and Lincolnshire with the charity’s Saving Lives Helipad Appeal, which is raising £3 million to build an onsite helipad at the East Midlands Major Trauma Centre at Queen’s Medical Centre (QMC). ‘We’re targeting schools in Nottinghamshire as that’s where the QMC is located, and schools in Lincolnshire because that’s where many of the air ambulance patients come from,’ explains Daniel Craggs, Senior Community Fundraiser at Nottingham Hospitals Charity. ‘We want to get the message out there that the new helipad at QMC will serve patients from across the East Midlands, and particularly rural areas such as parts of Lincolnshire.’ The charity is equally keen to promote the educational benefits of the competition to participating schools. Daniel and a senior member of the East Midlands Major Trauma Centre team will visit each school to give a special talk in assembly about the work that the Major Trauma Centre does, the role of the air ambulance service and the difference an onsite helipad at QMC will make to severely injured patients. Says Daniel: ‘The first 60 minutes following a severe injury is known as the “golden hour” and is critical to favourable clinical outcomes. Fast access to treatment is vital to give patients a fighting chance. At the moment, air ambulance patients have to complete their journey to QMC by road, which can take up to 20 minutes. An onsite...
Holiday Activities to be axed in Bingham

Holiday Activities to be axed in Bingham

The younger generation in Bingham are among more than 5,500 children who could have their school holiday activities cut after a council axed a contract with a charity which is now at risk of closure. Newark and Sherwood Play Support Group is 12 months into a three year contract, jointly with Mansfield Play Forum,with Nottinghamshire County Council. The council is ending the contract early to save money. Jill Musson, the support group’s co-ordinator, said she was devastated at the impact it would have on children and families. “We target areas of deprivation so it is poor families who are going to be hit. “If you have three children and a six-week summer holiday to cover, having a free event you can go to makes a big difference.” Jill Musson said that the charity would struggle to raise money through grants. It would have to cut its service, and could face closure. She contiuned to say, “Free play is not on the council’s agenda at all as far as I’m aware.” Heidi Bell, who lives in Bingham with her eight children, childminds three children and said the group was just starting to establish itself in Bingham. “A lot of families need help. We have been told recently that Bingham is the best place in the country to bring up a family but there’s actually not a lot to do here. “I have some sympathy with the council because there is no money and it is difficult to know what to cut but these children are our future.” Newark and Sherwood Play Support Group said it was encouraged to tender for...
Toot Hill Extra hold half term workshops

Toot Hill Extra hold half term workshops

Toot Hill Extra are running some exciting half term activities and workshops for both children and adults to join in with. Starting from Monday 21st October, a range of activities will be held up at Toot Hill. They will be offering a Family Art Day making spooking Halloween creations for children aged 4 to 11 years of age and their parents. They are also holding a Year 6 Activity Day which is a MasterChef workshop. This is EXCLUSIVELY  for children in Year 6 and they can come along (unaccompanied by an adult) and cook up up three delicious dishes and make new friends. Adults will also be able to take part in the activities. Two adult workshops will be running during the week including Painting with Watercolours, where you will spend a relaxing day learning different techniques and then creating your own masterpiece. If painting isn’t for you, why not try the Creative Cuisine Workshop, where you will learn different culinary skills and make four sumptuous dishes to take home. Please see the flyer for more details on booking your place on the one day courses....