Year 9 STEM day

Earlier this term all 240 of our Year 9 students took part in a Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths (STEM) day, hosted by the RAF. Two RAF engineers and three other facilitators set the students challenges: the first was building a bridge and a moving vehicle from straws, dowels and kinex parts. The more students could prove their build could do, the more points they earned and the more parts they could “buy” to improve their build even further. The second challenge was to build the highest possible tower that would support the weight of a wooden block (standing in for a helicopter) – using only paper and glue. There were some seriously competitive Year 9’s who were vying fiercely to see who could build the longest bridge and the tallest tower! The winners in each challenge, and overall, received prizes from the RAF. There were also two presentations during the day about the importance of engineering and engineers and the students asked some very insightful questions – though the earning power of an engineer seemed to hold the greatest fascination for some! It was a busy, noisy day in the sports hall and for some the experience of having to work in groups without their friends was very challenging in itself, even without the engineering aspect. I hope that all our Year 9’s learned something from the day and that we may have planted the seeds of a career for some future engineers! Thank you to all the staff who helped the day to run smoothly and to all those students who were so enthusiastic and who requested that we do STEM day every day!

Mrs Karen Hutson, Head of Science