In the last week of the Autumn term, the Year 11 GCSE Art students took part in some pottery lessons.

Local Potter Andy Gill came in and talked about his craft. Andy is a master potter, being traditionally trained at Whichford pottery, where he worked for over 30 years. Now concentrating on his own distinctive range of hand thrown terracotta flowerpots, Andy showed the students how to work with clay and helped them all created their own distinctive pieces. The students (and Mrs. Costello) also tried making a pot on a traditional pottery wheel which was great fun. The pieces the students made will be fired by Andy in his kiln when they are dry.

The students really enjoyed using a different medium in Art and learning about another facet of Art as a career option. We are extremely grateful to Mr Gill for giving up his valuable time to provide such a great experience for our students.

As part of their GCSE course, the Science department took the Year 11 students on a voyage back through time, where they learnt about the history of earth.  In the morning they were given an insightful talk about the museum, Darwin, Wallace and how their ideas have shaped our understanding of evolution and natural selection.  In the afternoon they completed an evolutionary trail, where they immersed themselves in the complete history of earth, discovering how the horse evolved from a small dog like creature to what we see today; they looked at why some animals have similar characteristics when they have oceans between them and why birds developed feathers and flight.  This was followed by a workshop looking at how humans have evolved, where the students used hands-on techniques to measure the skulls of our evolutionary ancestors to work out how the skull has changed and what this means for the brain.  It was a wonderful opportunity for Shipston High School students to be immersed in the academic atmosphere of Oxford University.