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All the latest News from Ely College

December 2017

  • 12 Hours of Sport & Ward Visit

    Published 19/12/17

    Ely College students visit children and teen cancer wards after an epic ‘12 Hours of Sport’.

    Twelve students from Ely College were selected to be part of a special trip to Addenbrooke’s Hospital today (19th) to offer holiday cheer and gifts to children on the cancer wards after sweating for 12 hours to raise money.

    The students all participated in the ‘12 Hours of Sport’ event, which gives Key Stage 3 students at Ely College the opportunity to raise money on behalf of the Malcolm Whales Foundation (MWF).

    Students arrived at the college before 7am and worked solidly for 12 hours in the gym and fitness suite, raising over £2000. Staff were very impressed with the dedication and effort shown, but also the leadership qualities that shone through on the day as students supported each other and steered their own pace to keep each other motivated. Mr Patman, PE teacher at Ely College and trustee of the MWF said “While we like to keep it interesting for them by facilitating games and different sports, this year students really stepped up and worked exceptionally well together.”

    For going above and beyond, twelve students were invited to take £500 of the money raised and become elves for the day. They visited the C2 children’s oncology and haematology ward in Addenbrooke’s to deliver sacks full of presents, board games and puzzles that would benefit the ward for months to come and help to put a smile on poorly children’s faces this Christmas.

    Year 9 student, Josh Lawrence, said: “A lot of kids are going through painful treatment now so they can spend recovery time at home for Christmas. It was nice to play a game of Connect 4 with them and put a smile on their face. They were so grateful for the gifts, as were the nurses at Addenbrooke’s.”

    Ely College will continue to cherish their link with the Malcolm Whales Foundation and we look forward to next year’s fundraising efforts with the Dorset Walk in July. Any other local schools keen to join us for our 12 Hours of Sport 2018, are welcome to contact Mr Patman via the college.

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  • PLEDGES & Futures "Charities" Day

    Published 19/12/17

    Ely College students organise their first PLEDGES and Futures ‘Charity Day’ in aid of five House Charities.

    Ely College students celebrated their first ‘Charities Day’ which raised nearly £2000 for their chosen charities.

    This action packed event, dedicated to fundraising, is one of the Cambridge Meridian Academies Trust’s well-established PLEDGES and Futures Days, where students are given the opportunity to work towards their PLEDGES or broaden their experiences as they work towards their future careers.

    In the lead up to the big day, the students came together in their form groups and Houses to vote for their House charities for the year. It was a difficult process as so many worthy causes were on the table, but overall each House leaned towards a charity that helped children. Students shared their thoughts and empathised with young people their age who face difficult challenges or life threating conditions.  This year, Ely College will be supporting the following five charities:

    • Arthur Rank Hospice - Scott House
    • Little Miracles - Etheldreda House
    • C9 Cancer Ward at Addenbrooke’s Hospital- Franklin House
    • Make A Wish Foundation- Turing House
    • with Bishop Laney Sixth Form supporting the Restricted Growth Association.

    Students brainstormed fundraising ideas, planned and prepared their stalls and the culmination of their hard work came together on Wednesday as ‘Charities Day 2017’ took place. The school site was divided into event areas with a food court, media zone, disco and even a haunted house! Soak the teacher was very popular as were glitter makeovers and various delicious cake sales.  As well as the traditional lucky dips and tombola’s we had some fresh ideas. From karaoke to Elfie Selfie stations, console room to sweet casinos; there was something for everyone!

    The event was well supported by the local community, with Gourmet Brownie and the Ely Fire Service joining in the fun to raise money for these great causes. Principal of Ely College, Richard Spencer, thanked his staff and all who supported the event and said: “PLEDGES and Futures Days are so important because they play a vital part in helping our students to develop empathy as well as more tangible skills such as the teamwork and responsibility that comes with event planning.

    “Handling cash with an insight into customer service and building communications skills that will benefit them throughout their lives, preparing them for life beyond the classroom. We are delighted with how the students have embraced their House Charities this year and we look forward to running fundraisers for them throughout the year.”

    Head Girl, Jaden Coe said: “What an awesome day. Enjoying the games and activities with my friends this close to the end of term has put us all in a very Christmassy mood. I enjoyed working with everyone in my form group to come up with an idea to raise the most money. One of the houses will win and while its is nice to add some friendly inter-house competitions to the mix, we are really pleased the money will go to help children and their families who deserve it. We want to thank our form tutors for helping us raise so much.”

    PLEDGES were introduced at Ely College last year and are vital in ensuring students leave college as well rounded individuals, to support their academic and career paths. A system of rewards and behaviour, PLEDGES help students develop character and responsibility that can be taken into their adult life. They encourage students to get involved with the wider experiences the college and community has to offer them.

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  • Rubik‚Äôs Cube Inter-House challenge

    Published 19/12/17

    Students at Ely College share their fascination with Rubik’s Cube puzzles and compete in House challenge

    A common interest in Rubik’s Cube style puzzles has led to students collaborating in a friendly inter-House competition to speed solve this classic toy.

    A maths lesson in cubed numbers with Mrs Goodey at Ely College shed light on a popular hobby shared by a number of students: “It was lovely to see passion and confidence in students as they shared their hobbies linked to maths and problem solving”. In their spare time, Year 7 Cameron Lamb and Year 10 Oscar Barter, push themselves to speed solve different types of Rubik’s Cubes. Both have competed in national competitions and their teacher was keen to help them share their hobby after they impressed their class mates. Demonstrations have prompted some friendly competition and the possibility of starting a ‘Session 6’ afterschool club.

    Session 6 at Ely College extends the learning day to 4:15pm for students who wish to stay for after-school activities or additional curriculum assistance. Enrichment opportunities like inter-house competitions and extended curriculum day, including PLEDGES and Futures Days, allow students to explore leadership and personal skills that can be taken into their adult life.



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  • Mental Health Talk

    Published 12/12/17

    Ely College is pleased to be working closely with Talking FreELY to help our young people open up about mental health. This great talk is coming up in the new year to raise #MentalHealthAwareness. Definitely a date for the diary!

    Check out the Talking FreELY site until then for more useful info. Our students are always welcome to chat to Mrs Riches about their concerns or how we can make a change to create an open, supportive culture around mental health in school.

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  • Congratulations to winner Ellen Olley as Palace of Westminster welcomes the Debating Champions of South East Cambridgeshire

    Published 11/12/17

    Fourteen Year 11 students from schools across Cambridgeshire gathered in Westminster last Thursday night for the grand final of Lucy Frazer’s Parliamentary Inter Schools Debating Competition 2017. 

    The competition final was judged by BBC special correspondent, Lucy Manning. 

    The motion debated in the final was ‘this house would legalise all drugs’.  Arguments on both sides were well considered, well articulated and persuasive.  

    The finalists, all winners of their school’s initial in house round, were representing Ely College, Soham Village College, King’s Ely, Bottisham Village College, Impington Village College, Linton Village College and  Witchford Village College.

    Lucy Frazer MP reacted to the evening saying, “When I first came up with the idea to hold an inter school debating competition, I could not have known that I would have so much support and positive feedback from all the teachers who make the competition possible,  giving so much of their time to helping organise the students. Four years on, the level of commitment and calibre of debating is clear to see and I am glad I was not the one judging as it was so hard to choose a winner.  I hope everyone involved, including all the students who didn’t make the final, have gained a taste for how exciting it is to have the confidence to speak in public and that they will take this forward with them as they continue into higher education and the workplace.” 

    The winning students were Katie and Ellen representing Soham Village College and Ely College respectively.

    They agreed this accolade was a great end to the winter term and a nice early Christmas present! 

    Katie said “It was a really great opportunity and really exciting to get into the final. I'm thrilled to have won and had the chance to visit parliament”. 

    Ellen added “After working on these debates in school, we were all excited to enjoy the culmination of our hard work as we visited Westminster last Thursday. We entered the House and being there in person, in this iconic building, was very inspiring.  It has given me some strong aspirations for the future.  There was some hot competition and great debaters with a lot of experience.  I’m just so grateful for being offered this opportunity. I enjoyed the feeling of a debating environment and seeing how the House of Commons works; gaining an insight into the diversity of voices.  I had never done anything like this competition before, this is a new skill which I am keen to build upon.  We have discussed the potential for a Debating club which I’m sure would be well supported in school.”

    Also present at the debate were representatives from the charitable organisation ‘Debate Mate’ whose philosophy that debating skills are the key to social mobility, higlights the importance of initiatives such as this.  

    Lucy has involved Debate Mate at the initial stages of the competition for the last few years. Debate Mate organised a training day for students selected by schools in the constituency, sponsored by Marshalls of Cambridge.  

    Representative Alex Dugan said,  “It was fantastic to see the progression in the students, from the first debating session in September to the final on the 7th December. Everyone spoke with confidence and brought some very interesting arguments, particularly when analysing the potential effects of drug legalisation on the NHS. We hope that they all carry on debating, and continue to develop the critical thinking and public speaking skills that debating develops.”

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