The RP Weekly: 11 March 2022
The weekly digital newsletter from Rydal Penrhos School - 11 March 2022 edition.
The RP Weekly
11 March 2022
GCSE Revision Courses
BOOK NOW for help with this summer’s GCSE exams, whether you are a Rydal Penrhos pupil or not
Easter is the key revision period for GCSE pupils and so we are holding a special revision week during the Easter holidays with our warm, friendly teaching staff for those across the North Wales area to assist with their exam preparations.
The GCSE Revision Week will take place over three days from 11-13 April 2022.
Excellent value for money at £150/day for eight hours of distraction-free study, including lessons and all food and drink.
This is a can’t miss opportunity for any GCSE pupil sitting exams this year.
Current GCSE pupils at Rydal Penrhos can book their place for FREE using the Schools Buddy App.
For external pupils, register and book here.
Anyone else wishing to book their place on our GCSE Revision Week, or for more information, email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 01492 530155.
May event confirmed
Rydal Penrhos is pleased to announce details of a special Open Day next month, which will take place on Friday 6 May 2022 and is set to provide prospective pupils and their families a first-hand opportunity to see for themselves what goes on during a typical day at the school.
This is an exciting time to join the Rydal Penrhos community. The school is flourishing from Pre-School to Sixth Form, examination results and value-added scores remain of the highest standard and things have a much more familiar feel to them across academic subjects and extra-curricular activities with decreasing restrictions from the Welsh Government.
The Open Day will be held in accordance with COVID-19 guidelines at the time and booking is advised for anyone looking wishing to attend. The event will be split into two sections to accommodate anyone looking to visit both Prep and Senior sites.
- Prep visitors – 9am-12pm
- Senior visitors – 1-4pm
in attendance will get individual tours from the school and speak with teaching and admissions staff to get a broader perspective of the day-to-day life of a pupil, the diverse curriculum and exceptional pastoral care.
There will be a host of things to enjoy throughout the showcase, which will feature core academic departments such as English, Mathematics, Art, Drama, Music and Science. Our thriving extra-curricular provision will also be on full display as pupils young and old go about their usual activities.
The Open Day will take place from 9am-4pm and refreshments will be available following tours.
Anyone wishing to book their place at our Open Day, or for more information, please call 01492 530155, email email@example.com or use our online form.
Where performance and building confidence are part of the timetable
Former Head Girl returns to inspire current pupils
Former Head Girl Anna Parry-Williams, who attended Rydal Penrhos from 2007-21, spoke to Year 12 History pupils about her approach to the subject, as well as revision more generally.
Anna, the younger sister of former Deputy Head Boy Lloyd Parry-Williams (RPS 2007–16), left the school at the end of the previous academic year having achieved three A* grades in English, History and Religious Studies.
Speaking to the class, Anna recounted her time studying history, during which she focused on periods as diverse as the Crusades and Yeltsin’s Russia. She highlighted her observations having studied the subject, stressing the particular importance of essay-writing technique.
Anna also talked through some revision strategies based upon the principles of Active Recall, which suggests that long-term memories are best consolidated when a person is repeatedly stimulated to retrieve certain information.
Having been part of a cohort of pupils unable to sit their A-Level examinations due to COVID-19 – receiving a grade based on continuous teacher assessment and coursework – Anna and her peers were forced to maintain exceptionally high standards throughout their time in Sixth Form, knowing that any piece of work could be instrumental in their final result.
Anna said that this need to remain consistently dedicated ultimately proved an immense benefit, adding: “While I didn’t have the opportunity to sit final exams because of Covid, the way that my year group were assessed actually helped me realise that every day was crucial to the outcome of my exams, not just the final weeks of revision or a couple of hours spent in an exam hall.
“I appreciate this opportunity to present to the class because I loved studying history and really enjoy any chance to talk about it.”
Anna is currently taking a gap year working in the NHS before she studies English and Philosophy at university from September. She is one of a number of former pupils who have visited the school to speak to current pupils, sharing their experiences in fields as diverse as dentistry and fashion.
Brings thanks to Rydal Penrhos
Sixth Form pupils at Rydal Penrhos were honoured to receive a talk from a family member impacted by the Holocaust recently.
Ernie Hunter (Hundsdorfer), a volunteer educator who has delivered a variety of Education Programmes in the United Kingdom as well as the Museum of Christians and Jews in Laupheim, Germany, spent time speaking with the Key Stage 5 group about his experiences virtually with those in attendance.
Mr Hunter told the personal story of his family, who were victims of Nazi Persecution because they were communists and political opponents of Adolf Hitler. Germans who opposed the Führer suffered terror, imprisonment, interrogation, torture, forced labour and murder.
Rydal Penrhos was also impacted significantly by the Second World War. Penrhos College pupils were evacuated to Chatsworth House and many pupils lost their lives fighting for freedom against tyrrany.
Not only this, but the school also provided refuge for those fleeing Nazi rule. Perhaps most famously, the family of notorious comedian and actor Ben Elton benefitted enormously from the school’s generosity.
Elton’s family, who are Jewish and had the surname Ehrenberg, fled Germany in the 1930s as Hitler and his Nazi party began to impose their absolute power on the country.
Speaking to the Sunday Times, he said: “My grandfather, an ancient historian, found a teaching position in London, which secured an entry visa for him and his wife, but not their children.
“It was then that a chat between two strangers on a train in Wales led to news of my family’s plight reaching the Methodist chaplain of Rydal Penrhos School in Colwyn Bay.
“He offered to take the two boys into his school, to house, feed and teach them for nothing.”
The two boys, Lewis and Geoffrey, made the most of their opportunity at Rydal Penrhos, with the former studying at the University of Cambridge on his way to becoming a fellow of the American Institute of Physics.
Sir Geoffrey, who died in 1994, was a historian who had been knighted in 1986 and once recalled:
“One memory is clear: we came as strangers, and you took us in.”
Mr Hunter sent a heart-warming email to the Reverend Dr Rob Beamish, Chaplain of Rydal Penrhos, outlining his thanks to the school for their selfless refuge efforts that he also highlighted during the talk.
He wrote: “I hope you were able to see my thank you to Wales and to Rydal Penrhos.
"Not just my parents but also so many Jewish refugees from Germany, Austria and Czechoslovakia say thank you for giving us refuge and friendship.
“Rydal Penrhos generously looked after Gottfried and Ludwig Ehrenberg (later called: Sir Geoffrey and Lewis Elton), including providing them with a refuge and a first class education.
“I mentioned to your pupils that the cult comedy Black Adder owes a debt to Rydal Penrhos.
"Black Adder was written by Ben Elton – and he would not have been born but for the hospitality given to Gottfried and Ludwig Ehrenberg.”
Rydal Penrhos U16 Rugby 7s 2022
Everything you need to know
Final preparations are being made ahead of this weekend’s Rydal Penrhos U16 Rugby 7s Tournament, which is a competition that always draws a significant amount of high-quality teams.
A number of teams and schools will descend on Rydal Penrhos for the competition featuring some of the brightest young rugby players from across the region. The tournament has not been held for the last two years due to COVID-19 restrictions and staff have done an exceptional job preparing the pitches, organising the event and ensuring our guests get the warmest of welcomes.
What date and time will it take place?
The Rydal Penrhos U16 Rugby 7s will take place on Saturday 12 March 2022 from 9am-4pm on the school’s stunning New Field site. The first set of fixtures are set to begin at 9.30am and will continue throughout the day.
What are the groups?
- Wirral Grammar School
- Colwyn Bay Rugby Club
- Llandovery College
- Stonyhurst College
- St Ambrose College
- Ysgol Glan Clwyd
- Rydal Penrhos
- Stockport Grammar School
- Newcastle Under Lyme School
- Mold Rugby Club
- Cathedral School
- Ysgol Glan Clwyd (Blues)
Following the group stage, teams will then be split into different categories based on their standing within each pool, competing in knockout games to determine the overall winner and other coveted trophies.
Can I attend?
Parents, staff, current and former pupils as well as members of the wider community are more than welcome to attend what promises to be a fine showcase of Rugby 7s.
Will refreshments be available?
A tuck shop will be available for refreshments all day and those in attendance will also enjoy a lunchtime barbecue complete with vegan options.
How can I follow the Rydal Penrhos Rugby 7s?
For those unable to attend, Rydal Penrhos will be posting updates on our Facebook and Twitter feeds throughout the day. A full report and gallery will also be available to view and read early next week.
Full information on the Rydal Penrhos U16 Rugby 7s tournament can be found here.
Incredible UKMT Intermediate Challenge results!
Not only do Rydal Penrhos pupils develop their academic prowess through a rich and varied curriculum from Pre-School to Sixth Form, but the school actively encourages participation in various competitions and challenges throughout the year.
This is something that has come with great success and also gives those taking part a real sense of achievement that can boost confidence upon returning to a classroom environment.
One of the most anticipated is the United Kingdom Mathematics Trust challenges that take place annually. These are held at Junior, Intermediate and Senior levels depending on the age group and they are open to pupils across the globe.
Rydal Penrhos is delighted to announce a phenomenal set of results from this year’s UKMT Intermediate Challenge, with no fewer than 22 pupils gaining Bronze, Silver or Gold certificates as a result of their tremendous efforts.
Lily Davies and Zac Roberts were the pupils that attained a prestigious Gold and they will now test their skills in the Pink Kangaroo stage of the challenge alongside other bright mathematicians on Thursday 17 March.
There was further cause for celebration regarding Zac, who received “Best in School” and scored a whopping 108, which represents a substantial achievement considering the Gold cut-off point is 81.
Connor Bullick, Keira Luke, Finlay Perry and Fflur Pierce will be participating in the Grey Kangaroo section on the same date based on their superb scores during the challenge, with a host of pupils also emerging from the challenge with a significant amount of credit.
It’s been a memorable few days for the Mathematics department at Rydal Penrhos, with these achievements coming soon after iGCSE examination results were announced.
A total of 100 per cent of Year 11 candidates secured 9-7 grades, which is the equivalent of A*-A. 64 per cent of these attained 9 grades, with 91 per cent securing 9-8 (A*).
Mexican themes shine at the Prep
Our talented young pupils at Rydal Penrhos Prep are flourishing across all subjects thanks to an exceptional curriculum and extra-curricular provision that inspires, enabling each child to develop passions and build key skills in and out of the classroom.
One of the most colourful areas of the Prep is the Art department, which is a fantastic facility where pupils get creative during various projects throughout the academic year under the expert tutelage of dedicated teacher Suzy Morris, who does an exceptional job of putting together a comprehensive provision that broadens the horizons of every pupil learning at Rydal Penrhos.
Mrs Morris has been undertaking special activities with a Mexican theme across a multitude of different year groups during the Lent Term so far. Bold, colourful and decorative Mexican art consists of pottery, garments, baskets and rugs – something pupils have studied in great depth to provoke some thoughtful discussion and outstanding work.
Year 2 pupils have been extremely busy creating their very own giant Mexican blankets, learning to work and co-operate in small, creative groups in order to achieve their goals. They also got to grips with some interesting art themes during their time working on the topic.
Year 3 pupils took on drawings using Mexican Amate bark, which is a type of paper that has been manufactured in Mexico since the pre-contact times. It was used primarily to create codices.
There was also plenty of excitement within the Year 1 group, who delved into the Mexican sun and moon, learning about its significance before coming up with their very own drawings and paintings with the newly acquired information.
Prep School Council and Charity Committee come together for Ukraine
It’s hard to witness the events unfolding in Ukraine and not be impacted in some way. Rydal Penrhos pupils are always looking for ways to help those in need and a pupil-led initiative organised by the Prep School Council and Senior Charity Committee took place on Friday 11 March.
After a collective meeting between the two groups, who both wanted to help the refugee families fleeing war, it was decided that two separate donation events would take place on the same day.
This is another fantastic initiative arranged by pupils and something the entire Rydal Penrhos community supported.
All pupils were asked, if they wish, to bring in a monetary donation of any amount. The school will now pay these forward to the Disasters Emergency Committee Ukraine Humanitarian Appeal.
This appeal is being matched pound for pound by the UK Government and every penny counts.
Prep pupils wrote special messages of support during the day on the Ukrainian flag, with staff providing support and understanding throughout the activity.
The school community was also able to bring in any specific items and donations, which Year 12 and 13 pupils will now sort before taking to a special collection point in readiness to be distributed.
We are proud of the persistence of Rydal Penrhos pupils in their desire to help families fleeing conflict and hope that you will be able to support them in any way.
Simeon & Hannah reflect on Lent Term so far
Rydal Penrhos is enormously proud of its Sixth Form community. They lead by example, become strong role models for younger pupils and also go on to achieve great things both academically and within the school’s thriving extra-curricular provision.
The Senior Prefect Team are at the forefront of this leadership, keen to take on a number of different responsibilities throughout their final year at Rydal Penrhos before moving on, fully prepared for the challenges that lie ahead.
With the current academic year bringing a much more familiar feel after a difficult two-year period due to COVID-19, caught up with Hannah Davies and Simeon Murphy-Thomas, joint-Deputy Head Boy and Girl at the school, for their thoughts on what’s been an eventful Lent Term so far for a special feature within the Rydal Penrhos Society Newsletter, which was released on Friday 4 March.
One prominent area the duo focused on was year groups coming together in a safe setting once again in accordance with Welsh Government regulations. Something that has been sorely missed by pupils and staff alike.
“After a refreshing break, it was rewarding to see the pupils benefit from the relaxation of COVID guidelines, and see a revival in the whole school community contribution. This was especially apparent in the music and drama department with the phenomenal production of Matilda the Musical Jr. taking place; we appreciate the support and praise given by familiar faces of the Rydal Penrhos community to the school and the pupils’ efforts.”
Hannah and Simeon also spoke about their different experiences in prominent leadership roles as Hockey captain and Senior Cadet within the school’s Combined Cadet Force respectively. A further testament to the esteem in which both pupils are held among their peers and across the entire Rydal Penrhos community.
“We can see the school once again becoming a welcoming hub where every pupil contributes to the ethos and atmosphere of the school. Being able to mix year groups has allowed for improved confidence in leading and learning for junior and senior cadets alike. The extension of the rugby and hockey seasons into the Lent Term has also allowed for various triumphs against fierce competitors.”
This is an important time of the Year 13 process. Mock examinations have taken place, coursework is in the process of being completed and each pupil is readying themselves for upcoming examinations while also gearing up for the next stage of their journey within higher education or the working world this summer.
Hannah and Simeon highlighted the stresses that come at this time of year for Sixth Formers, which also saw extra-curricular activities become an escape method for the group and also enabled them to accumulate additional knowledge and experiences outside of a typical classroom environment under the exceptional guidance of Rydal Penrhos staff.
“With UCAS deadlines pending and the end of the university application process in-sight for Year 13, the benefits of these specific opportunities and numerous others became especially prevalent. This more stressful period revealed the importance of extra-curricular activities, because whilst giving us chance to stretch ourselves beyond the classroom, they also let us enjoy the act of just getting involved. Small moments such as these will be especially savoured as the approach to final exams begins for Year 11 and Year 13.”
Those who have not yet read the latest edition of the Rydal Penrhos Society newsletter can do so here.
Sponsors confirmed for annual U16 tournament
One of the most important dates on the Rydal Penrhos sporting calendar is set for a triumphant return this weekend.
Competitive fixtures have resumed over the academic year so far after COVID-19 restrictions were lifted, and the Rydal Penrhos U16 Rugby 7s Tournament will be taking place on Saturday 12 March 2022 from 9am-4pm on the school’s exceptional New Field sporting area.
This is always one of the best-attended competitive competitions, featuring clubs and schools from across North Wales and the North of England. The standard is remarkably high and the weather has been kind throughout the week to leave the field in immaculate condition.
Rydal Penrhos has also received fantastic support from two local sponsors for the event, which is held for U16 teams before many of them embark on senior and first-team rugby in the coming months.
Exile Sportswear, a kit manufacturing company owned by former pupil and current parent Marcus Copeland, has kindly sponsored and made the home kits for the occasion. Something which the school is deeply grateful for and is a testament to the connection between Alumni and Rydal Penrhos long after they depart.
The school is also pleased to confirm that the award-winning Edwards of Conwy has agreed to provide all the meat for lunch, which will be available to purchase with all proceeds going towards The Donald Hughes Trust.
This trust is funded entirely by donations and was created to enable the school to offer Fully Funded (free) Places for disadvantaged, local, state-educated children giving them an education that is truly life-changing, that cultivates Methodist values of compassion, tolerance, and courage – values that are crucial for the world today.
Everyone at Rydal Penrhos would like to offer thanks to Exile Sportswear and Edwards of Conwy for supporting our U16 Rugby 7s competition. We deeply appreciate it.
Closing date is approaching!
World Book Day Competition
- KS3 – select any character from a novel you have read. Write a story about you and that character.
- KS4 – select any novel you have read. Explain how the author makes the opening chapter appealing to the reader. Consider characters, events, style, structure.
- KS5 – select any real person from the past or present (from your exam subjects or from personal interest). Write a brief, lively introduction to this person, suitable for inclusion in a collection of brief biographies for teenagers.
How to enter:
You may handwrite or type your entries – all categories have a maximum of 300 words – make sure your name & house is included on the back – give entries to Hannah at Reception or email to firstname.lastname@example.org – closing date Friday March 18
- House points for each entry
- Additional house points & tasty treats (pictured) for first, second, third
- Parents were invited to compete, too - details in the email from Mrs Lucy Davies last week
This competition complements the Accelerated Reader initiative, which started last Easter.
KS3 pupils have a weekly lesson in the Watkinson Library where they can select books & read in a comfortable quiet space.
KS4/5 pupils have access at lunchtimes.
All pupils are encouraged to always have a book in their bag, as regular reading not only improves their ability to access exam papers, but also helps with mental health.
KS3 Accelerated Reader
Reminder of Key Links:
AR Book Finder (Pupils can use this site to help find books that match their interests and book level. They can cross-check the list of books in the library with AR Bookfinder to check book levels. No username/password required) Accelerated Reader Bookfinder UK & Ireland - Welcome (arbookfind.co.uk)
Accelerated Reader (Pupils use this site to take their STAR Reading Age Tests and to do book quizzes after they’ve finished a book. They will need to use the username and password given to them: https://ukhosted125.renlearn.co.uk/6722450
Stars of the Week
Prep Stars of the Week
- Reception - Morgan (absent today)
- Year 1 - Asher
- Year 2 - Ajwaa and Amelia
- Year 3 - Miss Cadwallader for being such a fantastic student teacher
- Year 4 - Theo
- Year 5 - Connie
- Year 6 - Finlay
- Artist - Sophie in Year 2 for her brilliant spring flower