Cyanotypes with Year 6

It was ‘a game of two halves’ as far as creating cyanotypes with Year 6 was concerned.

6M took part in the earlier Art session and experienced enough sunlight to expose their photographic paper. They used stencils, cut-outs and found objects to experiment with and there was a sense of excitement, not knowing what would appear.

6P took part in the later session and experimented in the same way. By then, the clouds had appeared. We carried on in the face of great odds, hoping for the best. It was not to be, so we will try again next week and hopefully the sun will be willing.

Tracey Konyu


Dyson Balloon Challenge

With only half a paper cup, two straws, four cotton reels, some elastic bands and a balloon, different year groups took on the challenge to create the furthest moving vehicle – a task much harder than it sounds. Working out which way up the cup needed to be was a crucial first step so as not to squash the soon to be inflated balloon! With lots of determination and perseverance, many moving vehicles were made and propelled themselves across the floor.


The Year 8s and Year 6s built their own fires using the fire steels and cooked eggy bread.  The Year 6 children had trouble keeping their fires going but enjoyed the eggy bread and the Year 8s were excellent at the fire building, but didn’t enjoy the eggy bread!  (Well some of them anyway).

Spaghetti Bridge Building

Kingdom Brunel, Strauss, Telford – famous names associated with bridge building from the past. You can now add the names of pupils in Years 3, 4 and 5 to the list. The task was simple: using just one role of tape, a load of elastic bands and two packets of spaghetti for each group, the pupils had to design and then build a bridge that could withstand the wait of a bag of sugar. The results were mixed, but the future of engineering is safe with some fantastic designs on display!

Team Building

Each year were given a series of tasks to complete that required careful thought and teamwork. The tasks started with the fairly easy mission of moving a tennis ball across the front lawn using just drain pipes. Once they had started to work as teams the ante was upped and they were asked to get their entire team across “the river” using planks of wood and crates.

Year 6 Camping

At the end of a busy sport and house competition filled day on Wednesday, the Year 6s (with half the contents of their homes) made their way to the marquee ready for even more exciting activities for the evening. The first challenge was to collect enough firewood to create a fire large enough to leave a large area of embers for later in the evening. Sorting the firewood into a useable wood pile was a challenge, but they soon got the hang of sorting by thickness and discarding green and rotten branches. As a team, the wood they collected created a magnificent fire. After a quick meal they were soon back for the best bit of the night – roasted bananas or waffle cones filled with their choice of chocolate drops, marshmallows, chocolate raisins and biscoff spread (a particular favourite). All washed down with hot chocolate and more marshmallows and whipped cream. Unfortunately the impending weather warning of thunder and lightning moved us from the tents into the boarding house, but not before running off all the excess sugar with pyjama dodgeball in the sports hall as the storm started outside. We were able to watch the magnificent lightning from about 1.00am from the comfort of the dormitories. The children were brilliantly behaved overnight and were refuelled by a good sausage breakfast the next morning, ready for another fun-filled day of activities.

Murder Mystery

Year 6 and 7 have been detectives this week. Presented with a grisly crime, they have been using forensic science techniques such as fingerprint analysis, making casts of footprints, chromatography of inks found in ransom note, and soil analysis to identify the perpetrator of the crime.

They have then been been shown evidence from witnesses and clues from documents to solve a murder scenario.


Year 6 and 7 have each spent a morning this week building bridges out of balsa wood, before testing them to destruction by piling them with masses! After some interesting initial design ideas (arch bridges might look aesthetically pleasing, but they are very difficult to construct out of balsa wood!), most groups settled on a truss design and then set to work cutting out pieces of wood and sticking them together using balsa cement (quite a lot of which seems to be on the desks in the classroom still!)  In Year 6, the winning team of Hannah Q, Harry D, Zain J and Rosie D put together a bridge that supported just under 1 kilogram. At the time of going to press, the Year 7 bridges are all still in one piece, waiting to be tested.

House Challenge 

House Challenge


Cookie-tastic at Vinehall!

Junior Updates on their Activities week:

Juniors Updates