Friday, 28 February 2014

28th February 2014


Students in this group meet every week to discuss a range of human rights issues based around activity sheets provided by Amnesty International.  Anyone can join the group and all years are represented.  If you are interested in debating some very challenging issues, listening to others and want an opportunity to develop your own opinions, then see Mr Duell about joining this group on Tuesday after school.


Stranger Danger
Please click on the link below for some important information:

All students will be told about this in their tutor time but please could parents reinforce the need not to take risks and ways of staying safe, when going to and from school.

                                               Duke of Edinburgh Award Scheme

Danielle has been working towards her Bronze Award and has been cooking as part of the scheme.  This regular commitment has been monitored by by Mrs Vadi.  As part of her work Danielle has run a session for some gifted and talented students, teaching them how to make bread based pizzas.
I was able to observe some of the session, which was very well organised and students expressed their delight in being able to take part.

Winston Science Success

Winston students participated in a local Science Challenge today, with great success.  The teams were:

Winston A
Ajanth Sutharsan (Captain)
David Stacey
Sarah Bindschedler
Patricia Medina
Winston B
Yusuf Ismail (Captain)
Edward Phillips
Timmy Knox
Rachel Muir
Winston A beat Christ College A by a staggering 90-10 and went on to win the Woking region.  The team will now go on to take part in the regional finals at the end of March.
Winston B came in an honourable 4th.


       Well done to all the participants and thank you to Mr Cumner and Miss Woodyer for organising the teams.



Wednesday, 26 February 2014

Year 7 Castles

                                                            7WS History Project

I was delighted to be invited to view the castles made by students in Year 7, as part of their work in history.  Students had used an amazing range of materials and worked for many hours to produce some outstanding examples.  As you can see from the photographs below, this was a tremendous piece of work.  Well done 7WS!

Examples made in the form of a cake or with sugar 

Lights and a drawbridge are the features of this castle

As you can see, the students rose to the challenge.

School Day Consultation

The consultation session which was originally planned for Thursday 27th February, has now been moved to Monday 10th March, to enable staff to attend.

The session will run from 4.30pm until 6.00pm, you are welcome to attend at anytime during this period to offer your views and to ask questions.

                There will be no Headteacher Open Door session on Thursday 27th February.

Friday, 21 February 2014

Half Term Activity

                                                 Year 11 English Lessons

On Wednesday I visited the English Department to see some lessons which were supporting students with their preparation for examinations later this year.  I walked into what looked like a sixth form session and was impressed by the attitude of the students and their focus on some challenging material.

·         On Tuesday, 22 students received a morning tutorial on Of Mice and Men and wrote a fresh CA in the afternoon

·         On Wednesday,  31 students received a morning tutorial for the Spoken Language study and wrote the CA in the afternoon

·         9 students attended one of the two afternoon sessions to complete a fresh creative writing CA


Total – 62 students attended (6 of whom came both days!)


The students were co-operative and appreciative of the time given up by Miss Southern, Mrs Snowden and Mrs Warburg-Gurel.

Thank you to everyone involved.

                                                             The Weather

The site team have been kept busy this week repairing the damage caused by the weeks of stormy weather, which has ripped off cladding, ridge tiles and branches.  As the water has leaked in this has caused problems with the ceiling tiles, which have had to be replaced.  We are fortunate that the site team has the skills to carry out many of the repairs to keep costs to a minimum, however, as you can imagine in a school of this size and age, maintenance is a costly business.

                                                            Support Winston

Please help the Winston School Association to support the school.  Without the extra financial support provided many of the pieces of equipment and resources provided would not be available.  Help can be given in a number of ways:

> Join the group, we urgently need new members 

> Shop online via the PTA website.  It will cost you nothing but will provide funds for the school.

> Make a donation via the PTA website

I am currently seeking funds to improve our library facility, which I can only do if the PTA has your support, as there is not sufficient funding in our delegated budget.  Please help us to provide better facilities for your child.  

Zoe Johnson-Walker




Monday, 17 February 2014

14th February 2014

                                             Students as Leaders

Students at Winston enjoyed playing host to learners from our local primary schools this week.  Our Maths Leaders took students through some challenging concepts and in turn enjoyed the role of teacher; perhaps realising that its not as easy as it looks!!


The Sports Leaders ran workshops on the sport of Badminton.  The visiting students worked had both in terms of developing the skills required as well as having the stamina to maintain the demanding programme.  The Student Leaders were careful to ensure that all participants warmed up and drank plenty of water throughout the afternoon.

In a new addition to our website there is now a link to enable interested  Year 5 or 6 parents to book a tour.  It can be found on the right hand side of the page and the dates are the last Friday in each month until the end of the academic year.

                                                              Raising Money for Charity

Students in Year 10 presented a cheque to the The Shooting Star Childrens' Hospice for £550.  They were shown an inspirational film as to why the funds raised are so important; it looked at all the different elements of the work of the Hospice, bringing tears to the eyes of many.  I am extremely pround that the young people of Winston take the time and make the effort to contribute so positively to the lives of others.


Students in Year 9 RE lessons have been studying issues related to freedom of speech, as illustrated in a previous blog.  Here are some Year 9 students planning and making their banners ready to protest on the patio!!


We have made a number of appointments this week to complement our experienced staff team:

Mrs Markham joins us on 24th February as Head of History
Mrs Hughes joins the Science Department in September
Ms Finney joins the MFL Department in April

I am aiming to appoint a Deputy Head and a Head of Music in the coming months.

                                                         The School Day

Parents will have the opportunity to discuss the proposals for the new school day on Thursday 27th February from 5.00pm until 7.00pm. A letter has been e mailed home and information is being placed on the website.

Friday, 14 February 2014

Breakfast The Winston Way!

Visit by student council to Woking Council Chambers

On 12th February the school council visited the Woking Council Chambers and met with the Mayor of Woking Councillor Anne Roberts.

The students were shown into the chambers by the Mayor’s secretary and then the Mayor explained how the council worked and how the democratic process worked.

She spoke about the history of Woking and its councils and their various responsibilities relating to the residents of Woking and its boroughs; she then went on to explain the role of mayor and the traditions behind the robes and mace. The students then were invited to ask questions; the questions were well thought and insightful. Finally, all the students were invited to attend one of the council meetings to see the council in full swing.
All students conducted themselves excellently and were a real credit to the school.

Start the Day Right Breakfast

On 13th February the students who attend the Start the Day Right breakfast with Mrs Bracher and Mr Davis went to Sainsbury’s to buy supplies for the breakfast they were going to cook for their tutors, Mr Reed and Mrs Alexander. The trip was a great success with the students understanding how to budget for a meal and buying the necessary items.

On Friday 14th they came in early to cook a range of breakfast goodies including pancakes with fresh fruit, expertly flipped by the students, sausages, bacon, scrambled eggs and range of hot and cold drinks. The feedback from the tutors and year team was very complimentary. “I thought it was brilliant, great to see the students taking on the responsibility. I think they got a sense of pride and achievement from planning, making and serving us a meal. The students I have seen today have all been glowing with pride and put a lot of extra effort into their work!”

 Fried or scrambled?

 Staff enjoying the breakfast!!

Tuesday, 11 February 2014

A Sparkling Winston Performance

I thought that I knew how good a school production could be but I had never seen a Winston Production.  Wow! I was amazed at the outstanding, professional show presented to parents, staff, our guests and members of the public. You are a credit to our school.

The commitment, drive and creativity of Mr Donaldson and Mr Jolly ensured that every element of the show was compelling.  The students were in charge of the technical aspects, as well as stage management.  Costumes were coordinated and made by Mrs Parfitt and her team and this was a huge task, as there were over 100 members of the cast!

Thank you to everyone involved, including parents who supported in so many ways including being the taxi driver.

Saturday, 8 February 2014

The Winston Learning Experience

Lessons at Winston are exciting and enable our students to study academic theory through a range of activities which ensure that the learning is embedded.  I am sure you will agree as you look at these examples.

9C3 produced the video clip, which can be accessed through the link below, as a homework task linked to their work on media.  The quality of the work is exceptional and has been praised by their class teacher Ms Nettleton.  Thank you to Ella, Laura, Jasmine, Rhoda and Maddy for setting such a high standard.

During RE lessons with Mr McLeish, students have been exploring the issues of freedom of speech and the rights to protest or to be heard, which are not available in some other countries.  

Having explored the issues, beginning with the protests in Tiananmen Square, students held their own protest on the patio, with banners demanding the right to have a choice.  The authorities enjoyed the spectacle, on what was a wet and windy day.  The serious message in this series of lessons will never be forgotten by these groups of young people.


The students in 8W4 yesterday afternoon were challenged by Miss Lister to work in groups to research a specific type of Civil War soldier; to find out what armour the Pikemen, Musketeers and Cavalry wore and then recreate their signature ‘look’ from limited resources for a ‘catwalk show’, where they explained their chosen soldier to the rest of the group. 8WI also did this task earlier the same day, but they were rather more camera shy! 

Everyone who has been to see The Sound of Music, being staged at the Rhoda McGaw theatre has come back singing the praises of the cast and the production team.  Both Mr Donaldson and Mr Jolly have, again, created a production of which we can be extremely proud.  I am looking forward to tonight's final performance.

Wednesday, 5 February 2014

Winston Marches On!

                                  Premier League U16 Schools Cup - Quarter Final stage
The U16 Boys Football Team were triumphant once again, winning their quarter final 4:3 against a very tough opposition. Semi finals here we come!!  For once Mr McLeish seemed lost for words, as he was so proud of his team and felt that they were being rewarded for the hardwork and committment thay have shown throughout their time at Winston.  The team are a credit to the school and we salute this magnificent achievement.

                                               We are all looking forward to the semi-final.
Thank you to everyone who came out on a wet, windy, cold evening to support, it was worth it.

Sunday, 2 February 2014

A Busy Week in The English Department

It’s been a varied and exciting week in the English Department. On Thursday, 43 Year 10 and 11 students attended Poetry Live! at the Hexagon Theatre in Reading.  Poetry Live! is an annual event providing GCSE English Literature students with the opportunity to hear the poets they study, such as Carol Ann Duffy and Simon Armitage, read their poems; explain the meaning behind them and answer questions from the 600-strong student audience. 


Mrs Southern’s 7WT English class have been experiencing (many for the first time) what it is like to take part in a debate. The motion up for discussion was ‘Are computer games harmful to today’s teenagers?’  The speakers rose superbly to the challenge and faced some tough questioning from their peers!


Finally Mrs Southern and Mrs Payne went ‘back to college’ on Monday! They attended A level lessons in Creative Writing, English Language and English Literature, as well as a GCSE re-sit class at Woking College.  This is part of a new venture between WCSC English Department and Woking College to share more teaching ideas and initiatives, as well as bridging the gap between KS4 and KS5.  Members from the English Department at the college will, in turn, visit GCSE English lessons at Winston next half term.