That’s how I described today’s Remembrance Day service at our school this morning.

The event acted as the ‘final product’ for the expedition ‘Over the top!’ (for parents who are new to XP East, every expedition has a final product that culminates in a Presentation of Learning in front of a wider audience).

In my closing remarks I emphasised that our Y7s have been with us for just 9 weeks.

That’s. 9. Weeks.

The people who witnessed today’s event (including myself) were staggered by what they saw: 45 minutes of 11 and 12 year olds reading extracts of their creative writing, reciting poetry, explaining military links from WW1 to modern day Science and performing scenes related to their work in Drama – in front of 250 people. The transitions and movements between the 20 plus segments during the service were all conducted by students. There was no one hidden behind the curtain whispering ‘NEXT!’ or ‘GIRLS YOU’RE UP’. They pulled it off due to the hours of preparation that went on throughout the week.

The event embodied the work of expeditionary learning – drawing on disciplines from different subjects and linking them together via a guiding question, combined with developing the character of students.

What I saw today was nothing short of exceptional.

Well done Year 7s and what a start to life at XP East!

That’s Not My Name!

Year 7 have been learning basic rhythms and how to play these on instruments in X-block music.

They are learning how to play ‘That’s not my name’ by The Ting Tings.

Each child will learn the rhythm and notes on the guitar, bass guitar, keyboard and drums to create a whole class performance of the song.

Here’s the link to the music resource page. Pupils are welcome to book a music practice room on Fridays if they want to practice this song using the school instruments.

Maybe we’ll see XP East pupils in the UK Top 40 in the future!

Here’s Laicey, Lexi, Zak, Kristian and Florence in action!


Freeze frame thoughts in X Block

C24 and C25 have been developing their skills in freeze frames in X Block Drama.  We have discussed use of height, proxemics, physicality and more recently, used thought tracking to provide subtext.  Here, Ralph and James chose a title for their freeze frame and each directed a small group.  They then shared the freeze frame with the class, explaining the decisions they made and allowing each character to speak their thoughts to the audience.

What might the characters have been thinking in the court scene and the robbery?