“The best thing about college is the lunchtime clubs – I go to choir, debating and magic club.”
elizabeth, year 8
RIC’s Lower School is a busy and lively community and there is always lots going on outside of lesson times. For news about clubs and activities subscribe to The Flying Pig newsletter.
At lunctimes, amongst other activities, there is a chess club, an Anime club, a magic club and a debate club. The topics discussed are chosen to engage the students and help them learn through considering their own opinions and constructing arguments. Their passion has been boundless and their fruitful contributions have really fuelled some great debates. “Is television better than books?” and “Should we wear school uniform?” are just some of the debates that have really involved the children on a personal level. Although, parents better watch what claims they make, as these young debaters will pick apart an argument with a fine-toothed comb!
Music is proving increasingly popular in the Lower School and as well as timetabled lessons students take instrumental tuition and enjoy playing in a variety of bands at College events. Individual peripatetic tuition on a range of instruments is arranged in association with Kent Music School. There are a range of College bands and choirs including the RICestra – made up of both students and staff- who perform at regular concerts and talent shows. Pop Idol and Rochester’s Got Talent evenings are also popular.
d of e award
Year 9 students have this year all successfully completed the bronze Duke of Edinburgh Award and many have also taken LAMDA speech and drama grades. The D of E award is a long term commitment for our students; they dedicate a lot of their own time to complete their various tasks and projects, and this dedication is matched by many members of College staff who give their time and expertise. This year they have been involved in volunteering and conservation projects, participated in sports and music, and, most excitingly, are currently creating an outdoor education space to provide a wonderful legacy for future generations of students at the College. This year 5 students completed the Bronze, and attended the annual awards ceremony at Rochester Cathedral to collect their certificates along with hundreds of other students from Medway schools and local dignitaries.
a question of sport
We have our own fitness gym and an all weather sport pitch that is available for children to use each lunchtime. Lower School students support Sport Relief, this year taking part in a sponsored gymathon. We always encourage our students to come forward with sensible suggestions and proposals for activities and equipment for the College. In response to a well planned presentation from boys in Year 8, we have started a 5-a-side club after College, with hopes of arranging friendly matches with nearby schools (when they’ve decided on their tactics, of course).
Extra curricular sport is popular at college. There’s cricket club for the year 7s and 8s and 9s to 13s can sign up for the cycling club. The plan is for this new club to be based at the state of the art Cyclopark in Gravesend with track cycling in winter and road cycling in the summer. Years 11-13 can join the rugby team who train once a week at Medway Rugby Club within walking distance of the school. After school, rain or shine they train for 2 hours per week. For fitness work our onsite gym is open each lunchtime and after school. Facilities include spinning bikes, a concept 2 rowing machine, treadmill, static bike, step machine, static weight machines and free weights. Plus there’s always basketball on the all weather pitch to let off steam.
At the start of term we work hard to ensure that students settle in. There is a welcome barbecue and an annual Circus workshop in the first week where Stumpy and Co from the Kent Circus School lead our students in juggling, uni cycling, and plate spinning.
fresh from the garden
Since October half term a collection of the Bronze and Silver Duke of Edinburgh Award candidates have volunteered their Thursday lunchtimes to complete projects in the garden.
The students have recently worked really hard to prepare the allotments for planting up this spring. They have braved the cold snowy weather and recently started to enjoy the first signs of spring!
Fruits of our students’ labour have been put to good use in the canteen throughout the summer months. Comments such as, “these vegetables taste lovely, where have they come from?” have been uttered by several, only then to be surprised to learn that they were grown in the New Road House allotment. Purple mange touts have not only been used as stir fry, but also blanched (turning the water turquoise!), and put into our freezers ready for use at the start of term. A multitude of yellow and green courgettes have had a similar fate. Many a mention has been made about the different flavour of the new potatoes dug up by Simon, which are even more delicious with home grown mint. They also provided the base for excellent onion bhajis, which Mohinder cooked to show the catering team a touch of Indian cuisine first hand, rather than from a recipe book. Plentiful quantities of spinach have also provided the basis for salads, quiches and curries. With the promise of beetroot , green beans, spring onions and much more to come the RIC catering team are busy planning more sumptuous dishes to whet the appetite for the start of term.
expedition and navigation club
In the Spring Term we will be starting a new Expedition and Navigation Club for all interested Year 9 students. The club will provide an opportunity for students to complete their Young Navigation Star Award recognised by the Royal Institute of Navigation and the Mountain Leader Training Board.
Alongside urban and rural navigation, students will cover essential expedition skills such as first aid, cooking, teamwork and emergency procedures. This will involve a combination of outdoor and classroom activities. After training, students will need to complete a series of tasks to prove their expertise in all these areas to earn their Young Navigation Star Award certificate and badge. For those who are considering completing their Duke of Edinburgh Award in Year 10, the YNSA award will also provide an excellent foundation for their expedition training.
“The quality of provision for students’ spiritual, moral and cultural education is outstanding. The development of students’ self knowledge, self esteem and self confidence are central to the College aims.”