Engineering and religion for pupils

The National Church of England Academy
The National Church of England Academy

Pupils and staff at an academy have been busy with an engineering challenge and a visit from a bishop.

Thirty-six year seven students from The National Church of England Academy, in Hucknall, working in teams, became real-life engineers for a day when they researched, designed and built solutions to real engineering problems as part of The Institution of Engineering and Technology’s (IET) Faraday Challenge Day.

The teams raced against the clock to solve real-life engineering problems based on the BBC micro:bit – the small, programmable tool designed to introduce those in year seven, to the world of coding and can be used to create anything from games and animations to apps and scrolling stories.

Holly Margerison, IET Faraday education manager, said: “Students who take part in the Faraday Challenge Days this year will learn how to code and programme their own BBC micro:bit in a very hands-on and practical environment in the hope that this will give them an insight into the life of a real engineer, the variety a career in engineering can offer and the central role it plays in our everyday lives.

“There is huge demand for new engineers and technicians and we’re confident that this will challenge young people’s perceptions of engineers and inspire a new generation with digital technology.”

The winning team consisted of Ellie-May Laverick, Grace Conidi, Sunny Bradshaw, Andrew Sargent, William Allen and Stephan Sargent. Each team member in the winning group was awarded a prize and a trophy for the Academy. The top teams from across the UK will receive an all-expenses paid trip to the national final in 2016 to compete for a cash prize of up to £1,000 for their school.

The academy also recently welcomed Bishop Paul of Southwell and Nottingham Diocese. The day started with an opportunity for him to pray with members of staff before having a tour of the academy with Fran and Nathan, the current head girl and boy.

Bishop Paul spent time in three different religious studies lessons, both short and full course GCSE and Year 7. Students enjoyed questioning him on a variety of topics related to their programmes of study.

Worcester House listened to Bishop Paul talk about wisdom and learning during their assembly in which one of the students had his shoes polished by him as an example of how we must but our wisdom and knowledge to effective use.

There was also an opportunity for Bishop Paul to meet with students from years seven to 12.