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Enrichment 2016: The Beginning

Enrichment week 2016 has officially kicked off!

Enrichment Week has officially kicked off! The term “enrichment week” may not be recognizable to students and parents who do not attend Varndean but here it is a very familiar week that students and teachers look forward to at the end of every school year.

This year there are 33 activities taking place around school, locally and abroad. One of the earlier trips to depart on Saturday was the Year 10 Spanish trip in Salamanca. This trip includes living with host families in Spain, language lessons and other activities. Previously the Salamanca trip has really developed and helped the students' colloquial Spanish speaking skills and their speaking quality.

Students travelling to France for the music trip.

Another European trip is the music trip to Paris which focuses on vocal and performance skills. One of the most exciting performances that the students will be part of is the Disneyland Paris’ Performing Arts Programme. The adventurous 4 day trip left this morning and will be going on for the next 4 days.

Year 7s will be experiencing their first ever enrichment week at Varndean School. Many of the year group are taking part in the Year 7 camp to Blacklands Farm. This trip is always a rewarding experience for the year group and their tutors and an experience they look back on in the next 3 years of enrichment.

Year 7s heading to camp.

Aside from these residential trips there are many activities going on in and around school. From art based activities to sport and dance, there is a large range of events taking place.

There is a dance workshop taking place across the next 4 days; today is the street dance portion of the workshop. This is a dance style that isn't taught that often at Varndean therefore it's a great experience for students to try new things and stretch themselves out of their comfort zones

Art week enrichment.

Many creative opportunities are happening all over the school such as art week, ceramics, knitting etc. The students will be exploring a variety of techniques throughout the week.  Art students are creating dragon heads using paint. In ceramics, students are creating lanterns and learning how to work with clay - “exploring how the clay works”. Today they are creating testers for their lanterns and on Wednesday they will start making their final pieces. Both the art and ceramics students will be visiting the Royal Pavilion tomorrow.

Science is also prominent during enrichment week with a spread of activities and a day trip to Legoland. This opportunity helps students to develop collaborative skills as they are often working together.

There is also a residential trip to the Opal Coast in the north of France. This trip will help students improve language skills and enjoy aspects of French cultural life. Some Year 10 students are helping out on this trip which will expand their leadership skills this week.

Sport has always been a large part of Varndean and is therefore is always present during enrichment week. Active sports week is at the Yellowave Beach Sports venue today on the Madeira Drive, this is the first of the many different activities they will be experiencing in the coming days.

As Year 7s are starting their first enrichment Year 10s are having their last experience of this week at Varndean. 26 Year 10s are in Salamanca while around 50 Year 10s are taking part in work experience this week including in retail shops, schools etc. The rest of Year 10 is participating in a post-16 course here at Varndean. Today some post-16 students are at Plumpton College learning about Plumpton College’s courses and others are learning about CV writing and interviewing.

There will be lots going on throughout the week and there are many more activities to look forward to. Day trips will be taking place tomorrow, for example Art and Ceramics heading to the Royal Pavillion. 

Please also check the Varndean Twitter account this week for regular updates from the various venues and courses. We will provide a daily overview of the activities in our news feed.

Written by Trisha Mendiratta

Photos by Thomas Eames