Date Posted: 22/04/2016

18 April: the week at Read

Seeds From Space!

When Mrs Jackson of our biology department applied to the ESA (European Space Agency) as part of a competition to get hold of some seeds which had been taken into space by Tim Peake she sent off her bid and thought no more about it. Little did she know that a few months down the line that a batch of seeds from space would be winging their way to her!

Read the press release below we gave to local newspapers regarding the outcome. space 1.jpg

English Astronaut Tim Peake gives the pupils their orders for successful seed plantation!


18 April 2016

The Read School to grow seeds from space!

 Pupils at The Read School are preparing to become space biologists and embark on a voyage of discovery by growing seeds that have been into space.

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Planting the seeds: pupils of the Prep School plant space seeds and normal seeds in the same batch to analyse comparisons in their growth rates.

In September, 2kg of rocket seeds were flown to the International Space Station (ISS) on Soyuz 44S where they spent several months in microgravity before returning to Earth in March 2016. The seeds have been sent as part of Rocket Science, an educational project launched by the RHS Campaign for School Gardening and the UK Space Agency.

The Read School is one of up to 10,000 schools to receive a packet of 100 seeds from space, which they will grow alongside seeds that haven’t been to space, and measure the differences over seven weeks. The pupils won’t know which seed packet contains which seeds until all results have been collected by the RHS Campaign for School Gardening and analysed by professional biostatisticians.

The out-of-this-world, nationwide science experiment will enable the pupils to think more about how we could preserve human life on another planet in the future, what astronauts need to survive long-term missions in space and the difficulties surrounding growing fresh food in challenging climates.

Mrs Liz Jackson, Science teacher at Read School says: “We are very excited to be taking part in Rocket Science. This experiment is a fantastic way of teaching our pupils to think more scientifically and share their findings with the whole school.

Rocket Science is just one educational project from a programme developed by the UK Space Agency to celebrate British ESA astronaut Tim Peake’s Principia mission to the ISS and inspire young people to look into careers in STEM (science, technology, engineering and maths) subjects, including horticulture.

Follow the project on Twitter: @RHSSchools #RocketSciencespace 2.jpg

Harle Kelly beams at the camera as he and his fellow classmates plant their rocket seeds.

Regional Final of the UK Maths Trust 2016 Team Maths Challenge

On Wednesday 20th April Alex Rivett and Zain Khan from Year 8 and Lucy Barrick and Grace Handforth from Year 9 represented Read School in the regional finals of the UK Maths Trust Team Challenge at The Mount School, York.

The challenge started at 10:30 am and finished at 2:30 pm (with hour lunch) – 3 hours of challenging maths! The challenge consisted of 4 rounds.

Round 1 – 10 challenging questions that the team had 45 minutes to solve. Strategies were needed – the questions were first split up between the group and attempted individually then worked on and checked together.

Round 2 – A Cross Number with a difference – the four students were split into two pairs. Two students had the across problems and two students had the down problems and they could not talk to each other!

Round 3 – Shuttle problems – again in pairs where the solutions from the problem one pair had fed into the problem for the other pair.

Round 4 – a very active Relay where one pair had to solve a problem, run to a teacher across the room to get it marked and receive a problem to take to the other pair at the other side of the room.


 Grace, Zain, Alex and Lucy all sit patiently awaiting the next round of problems!

All four pupils made a great effort and should be proud to have represented the school. This challenge will be the start of further in-school mathematical challenges for KS3 and KS2 pupils. Later in the year there is a Senior Team Challenge for Year 11 and Sixth Form students.

WORLD CHALLENGE 2018 Indian Himalayas

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The official launch of the 2018 World Challenge Expedition to the Indian Himalayas occurred on Tuesday night. It was well attended by pupils and parents from Years 9, 10 and 11. The World Challenge representative went through a thorough presentation of the proposed 4 week expedition, showed a number of videos from previous expeditions and explained how the next two years would unfold, building up to the departure date. This is such an exciting opportunity and as was reinforced during the presentation, skills and attributes can be developed during these sort of extended experiences that are vital for making a young person resilient and employable in today's society. We are very much hoping that enough pupils want to take part so we can get a team together. If you require further information please contact Mr Garrard or Mr Hill; if you want to be part of the team please bring your deposit in to school before 3rd May.

Mr Garrard & Mr Hill

The Archbishop's Tour


The Archbishop of York, Dr John Sentamu stopped off at Drax church as part of his tour of the diocese of York. This six-month pilgrimage, being undertaken by the archbishop, allowed him to be greeted by many of our boarding pupils as well as a contingent of other local residents.

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The CCF celebrates HM the Queen's 90th in style!


Yesterday, for the Queen's 90th birthday, the sun decided to shine on the school as the school's Army and RAF sections went on parade in her honour. This was the penultimate week for the Year 10 cadets, who will pass out next Thursday, though of course for those wishing to progress to NCO status, it is just the beginning of a new and exciting chapter!