Second Year Blog

We start as we did last week, with further news of our World Book Day celebrations. This week I have the pleasure of announcing the winner of the 2017 Character Day Costume Competition (CDCC)…. The £20 book token has been awarded to Ben Francis of 2L for his Dorothy outfit.  This is the second consecutive year that a cross-dressing costume has clinched victory!

It was also an eventful week for Hampton’s musicians with concerts taking place both in the Hammond Theatre and further afield. Ben fills us in:

“Last Thursday, Hampton hosted the annual ISSP music day – a day where Hampton and LEH invite local secondary school musicians to unite in a day of music making which concludes with an evening concert, this year performed at the Hammond theatre.  Jai Saha (2J) Kristoffer Olofsson (2B), Henry Ward (2B), Jamie Lund (2J), Xandy Slater (2J), Milo Heard (2J), Dylen Singah (2J), Thomas Wykes (2H), Thomas Norman (2J), James Bantick (2J), Edward Finnet (2H), Arthur Hopley (2P), Sam Colvine (2L) and myself, Ben Francis (2L) were among a few Second Years to take part in this day. Musicians were put through their paces under the guidance of the Hampton and LEH music departments (thank you), and after just one day of rehearsals, came together to perform a spectacular evening concert (if I may say so myself) to include a choir, a samba performance, a brass band, swing band, strings and more. An all-inclusive orchestral and choral finale of ‘Duel of the Fates’ from Star Wars was performed by over 200 students – the greatest challenge proved to be fitting everyone on stage!  This great day was enjoyed by all and it was good to see faces from other local schools. Thank you to Hampton music department and Mr Roland for organising this amazing event.”  Ben Francis (2L)

Arthur Hopley (2J) says that it was a very fun day and all the musicians played very well and did not disappoint the audience.  For Jai Saha (2J) the highlight of the day was performing with the Brass Band with a whole set of new musicians joining us.  Jai adds that the newly formed Samba group sounded pretty cool. It is very satisfying to hit a massive drum, keeping a Samba rhythm with a big team.  Jai, Thomas Wykes, Henry Ward and Kristoffer Oloffson, along with the rest of the Brass Band, clarinet ensemble and brass quintet travelled to Watford on Sunday where they competed in the regional Youth Music competition. The boys don’t yet know if they have made it through to the next round but had a great time there anyway, saying that it was quite an atmosphere with amazing groups and quite inspiring.

Elsewhere the U13 7s team have started the season in fantastic style, winning the Newland House 7s tournament!  Captain Tom brings us the details:

On Monday the U13s 7s team went to the Newland House to compete in the Newland House 7s. We won all our games comfortably with a 5-1 victory in most games. We all had a great time with Ethan Knight (2J) being named player of the tournament and Huw Harris (2J) being named most improved. – Tom Ketel (2P) 

Monday was also an exciting day for the members of Think! Club who headed down to Chemistry. Thank you, Nayaaz, for this dazzling account of Monday’s workshop:

“In Think! Club on Monday, we had another of our regularly planned workshops, expertly organised by Ms Garrido-Soriano. We headed to C2 for a Chemistry workshop, continuing with our recent theme of ‘A World Without Water’. Dr Langdon started by showing us the importance of water in various reactions, by mixing it with metals from up and down the reactivity series. Most notable was the reaction of magnesium with steam, which released hydrogen gas we could burn, causing a seemingly floating flame. Then, we were able to do individual practicals. We grabbed some hydrated cobalt chloride, which contained water, and was a vivid pink. Using our Bunsen burners (everybody’s ears perked up when we were instructed to get these out!), we evaporated this water, and watched as the now dehydrated compound turned blue in front of our eyes. And this was a reversible reaction. Merely adding a few drops of water brought the return of the pink powder. After this, Dr Langdon decided that we would finish with a bang – literally! She mixed two different powdered metals together. Nothing happened, until she squeezed a bit of water onto them and bolted away. As soon as the H2O hit the metals, the whole mixture exploded with a ball of fire that left us temporarily blinded. It was certainly a memorable workshop, which showed us just how many reactions you can produce if you just add water.” –  Nayaaz Hashim (2H)

This week’s big Second Year event took place on Wednesday, when the whole of the year group headed to Kew Gardens for a day of exploration, organised by the Geography Department. Many thanks to Ben who has summed it up for us here:

“On Wednesday morning, we got on the coach to Kew Gardens. It wasn’t the best start to the morning as it was pouring with rain. As we got off the coach, we walked into the spectacular gardens.  First we went to the rockery and the alpine house, which housed hundreds of species close to extinction. It was fun to film our group videos in the gardens, especially in the cacti section of the gardens. After that, we went to the palm house. In there, we filled in most of our booklet, and learned lots of new information. Just before lunch, we walked up the stairs to the spectacular view of the sky walk. We then had our lunch, and after that, we spent our last hour at Kew Gardens in the Princess of Wales Conservatory. In there, we finished our videos, and learned about the different environments.  Once we were back at school, we edited our videos and then got on the coach home.” – Ben Settle (2P)

 Max offers us an in-depth breakdown of that terrifying tree top walk: 

“In 2H our first activity was the tree top walk which, if I’m honest, looked pretty daunting. We were given the page number on our booklet and were left to find facts up at the top of the trees and down at the bottom of the trees. On our way to the top of the tree top walk we had to count the amount of stairs, being quite scared, I think I may have counted wrong but that didn’t really matter. At the top the view was amazing, and some of the facts we found out were really interesting. However, although the view was amazing, the drop was also big and looking down was not something I particularly wanted do, but after a while I adapted and felt completely comfortable walking through the tops of the trees. The experience was great and although scary was thoroughly enjoyable and opened my knowledge to different types of feeder and oak.” –  Max Leman (2H)

 Sounds treeific!  Sorry, that was terrible; I really should leaf it out.

Last but not least, we say congratulations to a number of boys who have reached new merit milestones.  Well done to: Joe Barnes (20 merits), Sam Davidson and James Wiley (30 merits), Kyle Seth, Sandy Mitchell, Joel Arulpragasam and Ben Strong (40 merits), Jai Saha and William Fryer (60 merits), Rohan Vasudev (70 merits) and Abhi Sundaram (80 merits).