The Lent Field Day saw pupils partaking in a number of co-curricular activities, from CCF to business ventures to community action. Field Day means that the entire timetable is suspended for the whole day so pupils can engage is other activities outside of their usual school curriculum.

Here is just a taster of what they got up to:

Bear Grylls Adventure

The Remove (Year 10) embarked on their bravest expedition yet at the Bear Grylls Adventure, NEC, which was packed with physical and mental trials designed to challenge our CCF Cadets.

These included formidable climbing walls, many of which were designed to mirror real-life rock faces from around the globe; assault course against the clock; firing a bow on the archery range and, perhaps the most demanding activity of the day, the survival maze, in which they confronted snakes, spiders, confined spaces, water, darkness and creepy crawlies. Every cadet bravely swallowed a handful of mealworms in order to ‘survive’, and were glad of the protein when faced with decoding and reasoning their way out of an escape room in under seven minutes.

Staff were amazed at the resilience and fortitude shown by the pupils, many of whom pushed themselves to their limits, all while supporting and encouraging their team-mates through every challenge.

Healthcare Science Week

Ten Fifth and Sixth Formers participated in a wide-ranging series of workshops at Cheltenham and Gloucester hospitals and attended their pop-up healthcare careers fair. Pupils took pathology laboratory tours, explored the radiology department, observed tissue cut-ups within the Histopathology unit, tested brain activity and nerve conduction equipment with the Neurophysiology unit, attended a surgery simulation masterclass, and worked for half a day alongside the Occupational Therapy and Physiotherapy team. One pupil commented; “Health care week was really interesting and I thoroughly enjoyed it. It gave a really good insight into these jobs, gave a good idea of what a day looks like in their life, and helped guide me in my aspirations in science.”

Trip to Shrivenham

Sixth Form NCOs and Fifth Form training NCOs went to visit the Defence Academy in Shrivenham. The pupils were given a tour which included a tank museum, simulators and the ammunition hall and were able to climb into tanks, old and new.

Sixth Former, Georgia Faux, said: “The main highlight for many were the simulators. The Go Karting simulators seemed to be the most difficult due to a lot of feedback from the steering wheel and we also experienced the helicopter simulator which is used for trainee pilots. Although it made some of us a bit dizzy afterwards, it was an amazing experience.”

Community Action

The School hosted young pupils, aged between 6 and 8, from a local primary school which does not have the level of facilities available at Dean Close. They spent the morning interacting with Dean Close pupils playing music, art activities and sporting challenges. In the afternoon the elderly from local nursing homes came in for entertained from Dean Close musicians and singers whilst being served tea, sandwiches and cakes.

Other pupils were out and about in the local community; a group of Sixth Formers cleaned graffiti from the bridge over Gloucester Quays while others helped with the grounds keeping at St Mark’s Church.

Young Entrepreneurs Competition

The Fourth Form spent the day engaged in a Young Entrepreneurs competition. The aim of the day was to help pupils understand what enterprise means, encourage initiative, show the importance of working collaboratively and to also learn about GCHQ and cyber security.

The groups were instructed to invent a technological idea or product that could be used by education or businesses of the future. They had to consider their marketing and finance plans then pitch their idea to a panel of judges. It was great to see so many students involved in the presentations with many stepping out of their comfort zone to help deliver the pitch of their product on the Bacon Theatre stage. The standard of presentations was very high and ideas for new technologies ranged from ‘talking toasters’ and ‘smart mattresses’ to rubbish clearing drones and river filtration machines. The top four ranked presentations by the judges proceeded to the final where they had to pitch again in front of the whole year group. After what was a very close final round, the winners were Team 8; Ellis Clark, Archie Shanahan, Madeleine Maysey, Charlie Harrie and Harrison Lindsay; who go on to compete against other schools in Cheltenham.