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Extra Curricular Opportunities

Whilst all staff use strategies to provide stretch and challenge within their lessons and work to effectively ensure our most able students are engaged in their studies, we also endeavour to provide a vast array of extra-curricular opportunities, which can further support the development of all students and there are plenty in which we encourage Gifted and Talented students to get involved.

As well as the subject specific clubs that are offered at the Academy, we have other exciting opportunities to meet, challenge and support our Gifted and Talented learners.

Personal Development Meetings

During our timetabled Personal Development time in the mornings, those identified as Gifted will have the chance to work with each other at key points throughout the year, alongside the Gifted and Talented Coordinator. They will participate in carefully planned sessions that can help them to harness higher level skills such as critical thinking and crafting analytical arguments. These skills will be transferable across the different subjects that the students study. The meetings provide an opportunity for Gifted and Talented students to work with each other and also to get support from staff.

Debating Club

Students from our Sixth Form are given the opportunity to run a debating club for students in years 7-11. Learning the skill of debating is a really exciting challenge that can help students in developing their confidence and resilience alongside skills such as thinking critically, forming a convincing argument and presenting it coherently. This club runs weekly on Tuesday lunchtimes in the Gagarin Debating Chamber.

As reported by Alex Clark in The Guardian, the art of debate involves mastering skills of obvious intrinsic value: the confidence to speak in public, and make sense; the construction of a logical argument; the ability to read an audience’s reactions; and, perhaps most importantly, the willingness to hear others’ arguments, and to respond to them.’

We hope to gain experience in competitions and develop these skills on a wider stage.

Medical Society

Students in Sixth Form are also supported by staff to run a Medical Society, open to students in Years 10-13 who have an interest in pursuing a career in medicine. Given the demands of an application to study medicine, and the challenge involved in the career, this society aims to support students with wider reading and engagement in their studies of science and empower them to secure and make the most out of work experience opportunities.

It is our hope that we can build a partnership with medical schools and universities in order to provide the best opportunities for students wishing to pursue this challenging career.

Essay Competitions

Students will have countless opportunities advertised to them, such as essay competitions, which provide the chance to engage with their subjects at a higher level and also support their applications to further education or employment.

Such competitions are provided by a range of higher education institutions or subject specific associations and we have had great success with students who have won first prize. Our most recent successes have been a student winning first prize in the Newnham College Year 12 Essay Prize and another who won the LSESU Economics Essay Competition.

Students can be supported in their participation in such opportunities through subject teachers and the Gifted and Talented Coordinator at the Academy.

High Level Reading at the Library

We are lucky to have an excellent library, which Gifted & Talented students can use to explore their subjects further. There is a wealth of challenging literary content available that students can access in order to explore their interests further and really stretch themselves to understand their areas of interest in more depth. Whether this is in the form of books written by experts in their field or subject specific journals and magazines, there is plenty for students to delve into in order to develop their abilities and passion