11 Oct

We have ended the week celebrating Mental Health Awareness Day. Mrs Lomax and Miss Peak have worked hard to plan an exciting day for all the pupils. Here is what Mrs Lomax had to say..

We celebrated Mental Health Awareness Day today by wearing yellow for #HelloYellow. At Hollinwood Academy we recognise the importance of supporting our children’s mental health. Today we have been taking part in a range of fun activities across school to help our pupils identify and recognise their emotions and how this affects them, including playing charades, working through different scenarios as well as blowing bubbles!

Our day has also given us the opportunity to be supporting the charity Young Minds and their mental health awareness campaign. We have enjoyed having a chat and a cake and the monies raised from this will go to Young Minds @YoungMindsUK.  Although today has been fun, we will continue this important work with our pupils throughout the year. We will be encouraging our pupils to think about events, situations or people that help to build our bubbles as well as helping our pupils identify situations, events and people who may ‘pop’ our bubbles. Throughout we will be supporting our pupils by developing their awareness of where they can get help, people they may talk to and other ways of looking after their mental health. Thank you for supporting us today.

It was great to see a sea of yellow this morning walking around the school. Talking openly and honestly with our pupils about mental health helps them to recognise emotions and feeling and how these can affect them on a daily basis. Awareness of Mental Health has been an area of focus for the school over the last couple of years. We have Mental Health champions on our staff team that have been trained to support pupils and recently we have also sent staff on Penn Resilience training which will soon be embedding into the curriculum offered.

Now let’s go and see what Mr Corrigan, Ms Roberston-McCabe, Ms Nuttall and Miss Sanderson’s classes have been up to this week, starting with Mr Corrigan..

In Maths this term we have been looking at Place Value. We have been problem solving in groups with concrete manipulatives and through counting on we are moving on to Addition and Subtraction..

In Literacy this term we have been looking at instruction texts. After following steps to create our own Reward Charts we have ordered and written our own instructions for others to follow. We used Talk For Writing to help us sequence the steps.

We are now looking at The True Story of the Three Little Pigs. Our current focus is on questioning..

 Our Science topic this term is Forces. This week we have been looking at different types of forces, specifically magnets..

In Art our focus this term has been Self-portraits. We have studied our faces in different ways and used a variety of media.

We started off the year in Drama with our Arts Award presentation. Here the children were presented with the certificates they worked extremely hard to achieve last year.

In Drama this term we have been looking at silent film. We began the term improvising scenes using only the costumes we were given and are ending the term by applying the genre to our Literacy work, retelling The True Story of the Three Little Pigs.

Ms Robertson-McCabe’s class have had an amazing start to the year in KS2SRM..

We have been exploring the idea of witches in our English work, looking at potions and spells that we know from different stories. Then we decided to create our own potions from all sorts of different ingredients. In Art we have spent some time creating our own witches to go with our potions and the children enjoyed creating their witches faces to be nice or nasty witches.

In our Science lessons we have been discovering different forces, we explored which nursery rhymes have forces in them and particularly enjoyed talking about Humpty Dumpty falling off the wall and recreating that with balls.

We looked at what objects in our classroom float and sink and how different surfaces make our cars go faster and slower.

We have enjoyed working on our communication skills through games, we have been building towers as a group and explaining to each other what we are doing and helping others by letting them know if we think their choice will make the tower fall.

Finally, we have looked at the different faces we make when we are feeling different emotions. Everyone enjoyed making faces in the mirror to show how they were feeling.

We are so proud of how our class have settled back into the school routine and look forward to an exciting school year.

On to Ms Nuttall’s Year 11 class..

It’s been a busy week for Year 11 this week. In Science, they have been learning about how metals react by carrying out various experiments. They have also been considering the use of metal to make everyday objects. All of this is part of our GCSE studies.

In English, the class have been developing the skills needed to pass English Language Paper 1 which assesses their ability to read and analyse creative texts as well as produce their own creative pieces of writing. The extract used this week was from the novel ‘Lord of the Flies’ by William Golding. The pupils also had to produce a piece of creative writing using a picture of a shipwreck as stimulus. They have produced some fantastic pieces of work.

In Food Technology, the boys have been experimenting with raising agents as part of their GCSE qualification. They have been using cream of tartar, bicarbonate of soda and baking powder to make scones and buns. They discovered that the scones made with baking powder were the nicest but the ones using bicarbonate of soda tasted like soap and the ones using cream of tartar tasted like eggy bread!

In Media Studies, the class have been focusing on their coursework. Some students have been creating their own websites for a new health and fitness magazine, using original images and video to support their brief of targeting an audience of 16-24 year olds. Others have chosen to focus on film marketing and are producing their own DVD covers and billboard film posters for a film targeting 16-24 year olds. They get to choose their own genre and have to use original images when creating their final pieces.

In Art, students have been learning about still life and have been researching artists in this area as well as creating their own still life pieces for their GCSE coursework. The group will also be going on a trip to central Manchester next week as part of their studies.

There has been a big focus on mental health awareness this week and the pupils have taken part in ‘#HelloYellow’ day as part of Hollinwood Academy’s aim to raise money for this cause. There have been bubble machines, disco lights, quizzes, activities, visits from Spiderman and cake sales to name a few!

In Miss Sanderson’s class our Year 9 students have had a fabulous start this new academic year..

The students have been busy conducting experiments in Science with Mr Gold to figure out what causes different reactions whilst learning how to record the changes on a line graph.

During food technology each student made their own cakes to support Mental Health Awareness day, they had the option of luscious lemon or chocolate. They have also learnt key skills this term such as using a knife correctly, making colourful vegetable soup and making their own butter!

We had a visit from a member of the team at the Oldham Coliseum who very kindly shared his passion for performing with our class. The students gained lots of knowledge around why props were so big and what each character represents in a play. The students had lots of fun dressing up and performing…as did the staff!

On Friday the whole school celebrated Mental Health Awareness Day by bringing a donation and coming to school in something yellow. Students had a range of activities to participate in including positive message writing and a photo booth! It was nice to see our Year 9s supporting as well talking to other students about their own mental health experiences.

Two of our Hollinwood Academy students, Taylor and Declan, have been visiting the Learning Centre to complete work experience with Hortus every Monday morning. New Bridge job coach Tisha has an update for us..

During their first week, Taylor and Declan learnt about the purpose of wearing PPE for gardening and different horticulture tasks. Here they are with their overalls and hard boots, gloves and goggles for protecting themselves while using the power washer..

They used spades and sweeping brushes to scrape the mud and moss together, before using the power washer to get the yard clean! Taylor and Declan did a really good job, Mr Blackman and job coach Tisha were very impressed with how well they worked and communicated as a team, displaying a good work ethic and lots of initiative, keeping busy until the task was finished.

The next week Taylor and Declan learnt how to transport equipment safely using the wheelbarrow and drive the ride on mower..

They have been learning to be aware of others around them for health and safety reasons and their latest task was to lay block paving using different coloured blocks..

  • “I feel like Hortus is a new experience and I am happy about being able to actually do work experience and having as many experiences as possible for the future.” ~ Declan
  • “I feel like Hortus is great for experiencing what work would be like for anyone who is interested in horticulture, it is also a good way to pass the time and speak to friends learning work skills.” ~ Taylor
  • “They are a great pair of lads, they work together really well!” ~ Mr Blackman

Next week Declan and Taylor will be finishing off paving an area in the greenhouse to learn more DIY skills. They are both looking forward to the new DIY venture!

Finally, congratulations to all this week’s SEAL Superstars and Stars of the Week including..

  • Lucas for doing some fantastic learning in English this week and using some powerful adjectives to describe the characters in Macbeth!

  • Jack for recognising feelings in other people..

  • Carlo for being confident to use his big voice in lessons..

  • Caelan for recognising when others are feeling cross or sad..

Well done everyone! Over the last couple of weeks, I have been observing the staff at the school teach. It has been great to see how well the pupils have settled and been engaged in the learning taking place. I have watched English lessons in Primary where pupils are learning Shakespeare, PE lessons in which pupils work together to learn Basketball, Year 7s working hard on getting their e-safety badges and I even learnt some Spanish during one of the observations..

I am looking forward to going to see some more lessons next week.

I hope you all have a lovely weekend,


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