Tuesday 07 February

More LAMDA Successes

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Further to our recent news item about the achievement of many of our International students, there was added cause for celebration with further LAMDA (London Academy of Music and Dramatic Arts) exam success this week with many more of our students achieving Distinctions and Merits.

The exams were in Public Speaking; the Speaking of Verse and Prose; Acting; Mime and Devising Drama. 

Of particular note are Year 13s Elizabeth Baker and Claire Rhodes, and Year 11s Isabella Brooks and Constance Williams, who all achieved Distinctions in their Grade 8 (Gold Medal) exams, whilst Year 11s Robert Stirzaker gained a Distinction in his Grade 7 (Silver Medal).

In addition, three of our Prep school pupils took their Grade 2 exam, with Chloe Hall and Evie Ford achieving Distinctions and Anna Jefferies achieving Merit.

Headmaster, Mr Phillip Stapleton, was delighted with these results. “We had a record breaking number of students taking their LAMDA exams this year and the students should be extremely proud of their success.  Drama continues to go from strength to strength at West Buckland and is so important in building confidence in young people.  Many thanks should go to our dedicated drama teachers who have worked so hard with the students.”

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Our English as an Additional Language (EAL) department was delighted this week, when they received some exceptional results from both the internationally recognised Cambridge English Assessment exams, and the LAMDA Public Speaking exams, which a number of the pupils took part in last December.

Cambridge First Certificate is one of the most widely taken of all the exams provided by Cambridge English Language Assessment and is accepted in commerce, industry, universities and higher education institutions as proof of everyday written and spoken English for work and study purposes.

Four students sat the exam, with two of them achieving an outstanding A grade, including Rebecca Iseke, pictured here, whilst the other two achieved a very commendable B grade.

In addition, 27 EAL students, from seven different countries (China, Germany, Hong Kong, Italy, Russia, Ukraine and Spain) took part in the LAMDA Public Speaking exam, back in December, with the results coming in this week.

Out of the 27, there were 14 distinctions and 13 merits.  Whilst the majority of students took their Grade 3, 4 and 5 exam, Anson Tai achieved a Merit in his Grade 8 exam, with Douglas Syed similarly achieving a merit in his Grade 6.

Head of EAL, Guy Monk, is delighted with the results. “This in an amazing achievement for international students to succeed in a public speaking exam designed for native speakers.  I must congratulate Mrs Pip Cartmell for her hard work, excellent tuition and guidance to get our students to this level.”

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West Buckland School has always believed that creativity is at the heart of everything we do, whether it be in the Science laboratories or the Art studios, or, as was the case this morning with our Year 8s, in the classroom and library.

A Year 8 English group enjoyed playing detectives today,  Following on from their studies of the detective story, A Pack of Lies, the class worked in pairs to create the story of a crime, complete with suspects, red herrings, clues and motives.  They assembled all the documents surrounding the case making texts such as passports, police notebooks, sketch maps, suicide notes, ransom notes, newspaper reports, interview reports and witness statements.  After a presentation to the class on their crime, students then worked in pairs to solve others’ cases.

Meanwhile, another Year 8 RS class have been looking at religious architecture and, in this case, the architecture of synagogues.  Having looked and talked about the main features of a typical synagogue, and using a model to help them, the class worked in small groups to design their own layout, using Lego!

In both cases the groups were fully engaged and worked well in their teams to create some interesting results.

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As part of an excellent GCE/GCSE drama workshop today in the 150 Theatre, pupils from Years 10, 11 and 13 enjoyed a performance of ‘Pericles’ by Gill and Bill from Multi-Story Theatre. 

The play was both moving and funny and is a clever adaptation of Shakespeare’s play of the same name.  Despite being a 400-year old play, it deals with refugees and our treatment of them, something that is as relevant today as it was back then.

Bill and Gill have adjudicated in House Drama competitions in the past and so are well known to the pupils. 

Some of the pupils stayed on for an informative workshop which will no doubt be of great assistance to them as they study towards their final exams.