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Wyke College

International Exchange

By | Course News, French, German, Spanish | No Comments

Over the last academic year, six students from Germany, Switzerland and Norway have been studying with Wyke on a programme led by Education First.

Education First is a world leader in international education and facilitates students in studying in countries all around the world. Wyke has worked with the organisation for over 16 years, providing fantastic opportunities to study with us and experience British culture.

Our six exchange students have opened themselves up to a world of opportunity, travelling to the UK and living with a host family whilst studying a unique programme of courses.

Claire Michallat, Teacher of English as an Additional Language, has worked closely with the students and seen them develop over the past year; ‘Our exchange students have had an excellent year at Wyke and have all really immersed themselves in the whole education experience. Their English has also flourished as well as their perspective on British culture and education. It has been fantastic to work with them and getting an insight into their own culture too!’

Anna Hanhardt, came to Wyke from Germany to study Health & Social Care, Art and French has summed up her experience; ‘I have really enjoyed being here! The time at Wyke has definitely made me more self-confident. I have also met nice teachers and friends that I will never forget!’

Maud Haugland from Norway enrolled on Sociology, German, English Language & Literature and Applied Law courses; ‘My experience at Wyke has been really inspiring and full of opportunities so I am thankful for getting to experience my exchange year here.’

It has been a great privilege for our College to welcome these students to Wyke and we wish them every success in their futures.

Celebrating 30 years of Wyke

By | Biology, Business, Chemistry, Community, Course News, Criminology, Dance, Drama & Theatre, Economics, English, Film Studies, Fine Art, French, Geography, German, Government & Politics, Graphic Design, Health & Social Care, History, IT & Computing, Law, Mathematics, Media, Music, News, On Campus, Performing Arts, Photography, Physchology, Physical Education, Physics, Religious Studies, Sociology, Spanish | No Comments

This summer, Wyke Sixth Form College is celebrating it’s 30 year anniversary.

Since its humble beginnings educating 500 students in 1988, Wyke has since become one of the fastest growing colleges in the UK and currently has over 2,000 students enrolled.

We are holding a celebratory event to mark this special occasion. The event will include live music performances with top hits from across years, a bar, throwbacks and more. It also marks the launch of our brand new Alumni community.

Used to study or work at Wyke? Join us on the evening…

Date: Friday 28th June 2019

Timings: 7.00pm-10.00pm

RSVP: If you would like to attend, please email 30years@wyke.ac.uk stating your full name, year you worked/studied at Wyke and postal address so we can send you an invite.

We look forward to welcoming you back to Wyke!

Successful Year for Wyke’s Netball 1st Team

By | Course News, News, Physical Education, Sport | No Comments

Our netball first team travelled to the University of Nottingham this weekend to compete in the Association of Colleges (AoC) National Netball Championships.

The AoC is the leading organisation for college sport and physical activity in 16+ education. The event saw over 1,800 competitors from colleges across the UK compete in 13 different sports.

Our netball first team performed exceptionally well, coming away with 5th place overall.

The teams coach Debbie Brettell praised the team’s excellent performance; “Our team have trained really hard and have had a very successful year competing in cups and getting through to many finals. The team competed in three rounds to get through to the AoC finals. It was the first year Wyke has ever made it to through to the championships so they have done an amazing job – they are such a good team.”

A big congratulations to Team Wyke for all of your hard work and achievements and well done to all of the other colleges who took part in this national competition.

College in Action Event

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We are holding a College in Action morning on Thursday 2nd May, 10.00am-12.00pm for students and their parents/guardians.

This includes a small introduction and Q&A session, followed by a campus tour in small groups whilst the college is operational, focusing on the subjects you are interested in.

The event is ideal for any student who may still be undecided on their next steps or students who have applied to our college but would like another chance to look around and gain more information before they start with us in September.

If this sounds like something you’d like to attend, please email marketing@wyke.ac.uk or call 01482 346 347 giving your full name and school.

We look forward to welcoming you to Wyke Sixth Form College.

iceland 2019

Land of Ice and Fire

By | Biology, College Trips, Course News, Geography, Mathematics | No Comments

The visit to Iceland was undertaken by the Geography Department in March.  Cyril Clark and Kerry Thompson took 24 geographers to the island of ‘ice and fire’ to study landforms and processes associated with constructive plate boundaries and glaciation.

The trip was highly successful partly because of the exciting itinerary but mainly because of the fantastic group of students that took a great deal of interest in the geographical landscape.

It was an early start on the first day.  All students were up and ready in the hotel reception at

4.45am ready to check in at the airport.   All students were wearing their bright red Wyke hoodies and followed all instructions in a military fashion to ensure swift clearance of luggage check and customs.  By 11am we were in a very cold snowy Iceland.

Our tour guide, Steffan (also a professional opera singer and huge fan of Wyke students), took us to our first destination, Gunnuhver, where we could walk among mud pools and steam vents generated from the geothermal reservoir beneath the rift valley.  We then drove past lava fields and crater rows to the Bridge between Continents, spanning a fissure acknowledged to be the Mid-Atlantic Ridge, which runs through Iceland.  Crossing this symbolic bridge, we witnessed the effects of continental drift.

Our next stop was Stampar Craters where we could walk among pahoehoe and aa lavas that formed 800 years ago in eruptions known as the “Reykjanes Fires”.  These were fissure eruptions along a 4km fault which created the spatter cones called the Stampar crater row.  These lava fields are in an active rift zone which is prone to frequent but very small earthquakes.

We then visited Reykjanesviti, Iceland’s oldest lighthouse and Mt. Valahnúkur, composed of tuff layers, pillow lava and breccia.  The mountain was formed in a single eruption and shows evidence of the different phases of the eruption.   A drive along the coast allowed us to observe relic cliffs formed from the isostatic uplift following the end of the last glaciation.

The highlight of the day was dressing in hard hats and crampons to tunnel underground in a hollowed out lava tube.

We stayed at Snotra Hostel in the foothills of Eyjafjallajökull, where Cyril instructed the students on completion of their fieldwork booklet.

The second day was equally impressive.  We started by visiting SKogafoss a wide, thundering curtain of water 60m high and then made our way to Solheimajokull to trek on its frozen glacial snout careful to avoid the deep crevasses.  Our experienced glacier guide taught us how to use basic ice equipment, crampons and ice axes.

After lunch, we visited Reynishverfi where we could walk along the black volcanic beach to see magnificent basalt cliffs and caves.  Then to Dyrhólaey – the name means ‘door hill island’ – with its 120m high natural rock arch, this prominent headland is likely to have been formed in a submarine eruption similar to that of Surtsey Island in 1963.

After visiting another spectacular waterfall, it was back to the hostel for more fieldwork tasks and quiz night.  After the quiz we went to seek the Northern Lights with high hopes from the promising forecast – unfortunately none were to be seen.

The last day was the highlight for some students (me) as we were able to relax in the hot waters of the Secret Lagoon. With the steam rising into the air, the place has a magical feeling.  The water stays at 38-40 Celsius all year round and is perfect for bathing.  We soon cooled off during our next stop at Gullfoss.  These double falls drop around 33m then plunge into a mile-long gorge – one of the coldest moments of my life!

We then went to visit the site of Geysir, a spouting hot spring that gave its name to all the world’s geysers. Although it doesn’t often spout nowadays, its neighbour ‘Strokkur’ erupts every 10-15 minutes reaching a height of around 30m.   We then had a quick stop at Efstidalur dairy farm so that everyone could enjoy an ice-cream whilst standing in a blizzard.

We really appreciated the warmth of the coach as it took us to our last stop frequently used in The Game of Thrones for cold locations.  This National Park is where Iceland’s parliament was established in 930AD. The site straddles the Mid-Atlantic Ridge, its rift valley forming where the Eurasian and North American tectonic plates pull apart at an average of 3cm a year.

The last night was spent in Reykjavik, where we came face to face with the storm that was to cause havoc in the UK the next day.  A windy walk to the Hard Rock Café for tea and then bed after an exciting and exhausting three days of spectacular geography.

This was an amazing trip and one the students will never forget.

Washington DC Tour 2019

By | College Trips, Course News, Economics, Government & Politics, History, News, Sociology | No Comments

Visiting Washington DC in the spring-time was a trip to remember. This year the Wyke cross-college trip was scheduled later in the year, the weather was mild and the iconic cherry blossom trees were in full bloom, as twenty five politics and history students toured Washington DC.

Over the six day break, the group visited all the key monuments, historical sites, educational establishments and political institutions. The Lincoln Memorial and the Martin Luther King Memorial, the White House, Georgetown University, the Smithsonian Museums, Arlington Cemetery and Capitol Hill, were all visited in a packed itinerary. The visit to the Capitol Building was especially rewarding as the Senate was in-session, giving the students the opportunity to observe American politics in action.

The entire trip linked into the A level syllabus, a point that was constantly referenced throughout the tour. James Goodchild, A Level History teacher and John Whitaker, A Level Government & Politics teacher, took it in turns to deliver mini-lectures at all the landmarks. Catherine Eariss, A Level Sociology teacher, also drew connections to the social changes that the USA experienced during the 20th century.

It wasn’t all museum, landmark and statue. Following the success of last year, the group booked in to watch the Washington Wizards basketball game and others went to see an intense baseball match at the newly renovated National’s Park stadium. Add to this there was even time for shopping at the enormous Pentagon Mall.

To see more of Washington DC 2019, search Wyke Washington DC on Instagram or visit the Wyke Flickr account to download and keep.

Planning is already underway for 2020.

Library

Saturday and Half Term Library Opening Times

By | Accounting, Applied Science, Biology, Business, Chemistry, Course News, Creative Media, Criminology, Dance, Drama & Theatre, Economics, English, Film Studies, Fine Art, French, Geography, German, Government & Politics, Graphic Design, Health & Social Care, History, IT & Computing, Law, Mathematics, Media, Music, News, On Campus, Performing Arts, Photography, Physchology, Physical Education, Physics, Religious Studies, Sociology, Spanish, Sport | No Comments

The College Library will be opening on Saturdays from Saturday 27th April as a quiet space to study and revise between 10am and 4pm.

The Library will also open on the following Saturdays between 10am and 4pm.

Saturday 4th May
Saturday 11th May
Saturday 18th May
Saturday 8th June
Saturday 15th June

HALF TERM OPENING DATES (10am-4pm)

Tuesday 28th May
Wednesday 29th May
Thursday 30th May

Any students working in the Library on these days will be required to wear their college lanyard at all times.

Stuart Lilford

A Level Media Studies Conference Day

By | Course News, IT & Computing, Media, News, On Campus | No Comments

The Wyke Media Department welcome Hull University academic Stuart Lilford to the college this week. Stuart, who lectures in Game Design, will be discussing issues of media regulation, censorship, age certification together with legal and ethical considerations in game development, to A level Media Studies students.

Before taking up his post at Hull, Stuart worked for a number of prestigious companies, such as Rare and Codemasters. He also developed his own gaming titles. Time Stone, a point and click adventure game that won the 2013 Adventure Game Studio Award for Best Short Game, and Splodey Vaders, is a mobile game available on Android.

Read more about Stuart’s independent games development company at https://scared-square-games.itch.io/

 

students standing in front of the remains of the Berlin Wall

Stasi, Spionage und Showbusiness in Berlin 2019

By | College Trips, Film Studies, German, History, News | No Comments

In the very wee hours of the morning, the Berlin trip departed from Wyke Sixth Form College for 4 very full days of history, culture, participation in the Berlinale film festival and German language!  17 students, largely from the German and Film departments and 2 staff enjoyed a veritable smorgasbord of activities throughout the week and fell into bed exhausted every night, after averaging 22,000 steps each day!

On the first day we ascended the Berliner Fernsehturm, the tallest building in Europe. In the 1960s, the GDR government arranged to have the TV Tower built at its current location, with the aim of demonstrating the strength and efficiency of the socialist system in mind.  Today the Tower defines the silhouette of Germany’s capital city – a symbol of the reunified Germany, just like the Brandenburg Gate. We also saw a very moving Japanese film called ’37 seconds,’ which followed the struggles of a 23 year-old woman with cerebral palsy as she navigates the world of work and sexual relations. A real eye-opener, providing food for thought for all.

The next day we all visited the highly informative DDR museum, a vast treasure trove of East German artefacts and memorabilia with real insights into life behind the iron curtain. A well-balanced experience, the museum described the underbelly of socialism – how the elite, whilst preaching equality for all, creamed off the luxury goods, had private healthcare and escaped to secret holiday destinations.  The students experienced life in a Stasi prison cell and the lack of creature comforts in the Plattenbauten (GDR concrete apartment blocks). On the other hand the interactive displays described a happy life under socialism – where nature was appreciated, sport was encouraged and a feeling of community was engendered.  Because of the shortage of basic goods and the lack of choice, materialistic consumption was not an issue and people enjoyed sharing with one another, camaraderie and building a life for the greater good.  After time for shopping and eating, which all thoroughly embraced, we headed over to the Zoo Palast for our second film screening, namely ‘Bulbul can sing,’ an Indian European premiere about 3 teenagers on the verge of adulthood.  The experience of first love puts them under the pressure of high expectations and strict moral codes of the villagers, resulting in tragic consequences.  Students gained a real insight into the cultural differences across the globe, especially when the director appeared live on stage to do Q&A.  We also found time to pay our respects to the victims of the terrorist attacks of 2016 when a truck drove through the Berlin Christmas market outside the Kaiser Wilhelm Gedaechtnis-Kirche, a bombed church, deliberately left in its post-war ruined state to act as a daily reminder of the horrors of war.  In the evening, after a delicious curry, we had an audio tour of the Reichstag, the German houses of parliament which had previously been burnt down during Hitler’s reign and had been re-built with a glass dome by architect Norman Foster, enabling one to look down on the government when they are in session, the idea being that the people are ‘above’ the government. Germany’s aim was to create an open building where politics are ‘transparent’ and not hidden, unlike those of the Nazi era. On the return to the hotel, we happened upon a very lively German busker who was keen to indulge their requests – I shall never hear John Denver’s ‘Take me home, country roads’ again without reflecting on how our jolly bunch sang and danced along!

The third day saw us split into 2 groups, in which film students went to see an American teen film about the disappearance and subsequent death of a schoolgirl. The film bordered on experimental and was reported as being somewhat absurd, with the events driving the inhabitants into a nightmare of angst and suddenly revealing strange personal details about themselves. Students found it quite quirky yet sinister, however they appreciated the creativity of the director in her use of bizarre visuals.

The German and history contingent spent the morning meandering down the Bernauer Strasse, a famous ‘memorial street’ which was cleaved in half overnight as the Berlin Wall was constructed. Locals jumped out of their windows to avoid being trapped in the GDR, some being caught in blankets held outstretched by the West German fire brigade. Many of these horrifying escape attempts ended in death and the street tells the poignant stories of many individuals who did not escape unscathed, serving simultaneously as a museum and memorial. The tall visitor centre enabled us all to look at a preserved section of the Todesstreife (death strip) with its bleak watchtowers and barbed wire fencing.  In the afternoon we ventured to the East Side Gallery, the last remaining section of the Wall, 1.3km in length, upon which political / controversial art is exhibited.  Students really enjoyed interpreting the meaning of said art and graffiti, for instance where Honecker is kissing Brezhnev, in a supposedly fraternal gesture of friendship, although many view it as satirical.  Later we all reconvened to visit the Holocaust memorial and to reflect on the horrors and magnitude of the suffering of the Jews under the Nazi regime. The memorial consists of 2711 concrete pillars of varying heights erected on a slope, with the ground underneath undulating.  As you walk deeper into the memorial, the blocks become taller, shutting out the light and you easily become disoriented. Many students experienced uncertainty, a feeling of oppression, a sense of giddiness and felt that the smoothness of the concrete left no way of vertical escape. A moving plenary followed this.  We watched our penultimate film screening at the rather glamorous Haus der Kulturen der Welt which was ‘Guo Chun Tian’, a Chinese film about a teen smuggling iphones across the Hong Kong border, in a bid for independence and to raise money for a long-desired trip abroad. We experienced the ups and downs of the girl’s emotions and experiences and most enjoyed the insight into the people who commute daily between Mainland China and Hong Kong. The subsequent Q&A with the director and main stars was riveting and provided some great tips for budding filmmakers, such as our students!  We then sauntered to the fabulous Lindenbräu restaurant in the impressive Sony Center at Potsdamer Platz where we all gorged on some very tasty and satisfying Bavarian fare.

Our final day saw us heading to Checkpoint Charlie, a famous crossing point on the Berlin Wall and was accompanied by a trip to the Mauermuseum there: Haus am Checkpoint Charlie where gruesome stories and documents describe attempts to escape over, under or through the Berlin wall; many of which were near misses.  In the afternoon we split off again with the German students delving into the very strange world of global secret service organisations at the interactive Spionage Museum.  Upon discovering an early German enigma machine and other gadgets utilised by secret agents, I fear our students were a little too keen to join MI6! They rather overlooked the whole ‘risking your life’ element and assassinations by Bulgarian umbrella.  The film students were meanwhile watching a screening of ‘We are little zombies’, a tale of 4 orphaned Japanese children and their lives after the deaths of their parents, involving a good dose of tragedy, comedy and social criticism, as they start a rock band together.   Finally, after a hearty lunch and final chance to spend our remaining Euros in the Arkaden at Potsdamer Platz, we hefted our luggage back to Schoenefeld airport in readiness for our return flight to Manchester. We were back at Wyke at 0100 on Friday morning, exhausted but uplifted.

The trip participants were absolute an absolute pleasure to lead around Berlin. Punctual, organised, enthusiastic and at all times respectful – even waiters commented on their politeness and overall comportment.  They soaked up all the experiences offered to them, asked pertinent questions and were cautiously adventurous. Harvi and I thoroughly enjoyed our time with them – they were a delight, keenly trying out new foods and Berlin specialities.  Have any of you tried Currywurst, a Spezi, Kaiserschmarren, Gulasch mit Knödel und Rotkraut, a proper Turkish Döner or a KiBa? Go on. I dare you.

 

Heather Lorch

Teacher of German

1942 Dance

Wyke Win National Dance Title

By | Awards, Course News, Dance, Drama & Theatre, News, Performing Arts, Physical Education, Sport | No Comments

The Wyke College Dance Team are celebrating taking the “That’s Showbiz” dance competition by storm, winning four category awards and picking up the ultimate accolade of National Champions.

Our team of 22 dancers began their long journey to the finals back in 2018, competing in two regional qualifying rounds. Over 6000 dancers participated in this highly regarded competition, from over 200 dance schools and academies. Wyke were the only sixth form college to compete in the finals, held in the Liverpool Arena.

Whilst patiently waiting back stage, Toni Knight, Head of Dance at Wyke, nervously predicted that “this could our year”. The judge’s feedback from the qualifying rounds had been very positive and Wyke took to the stage as one of the favourites to take the national crown.

“Arachnophobia” and “1942 The Land Girls Struggle” won awards in their respected genres but it was the award of the National Champions trophy to Wyke Sixth Form College for “1942 The Land Girls Struggle” that really topped the day.

Deputy Principal Julie Peaks said, “I’m very proud of everyone involved and so happy to have been part of the day. Eden Walker and Daisy Betts have both done a fabulous job as Dance Captains.Thank you also to Toni Knight and Laura Bulless for making this happen. What a fab, nerve wracking and emotional day. Just fantastic!”

After collecting the £2500 prize money and National Trophy, student dancers Keziah Dean and Daisy Grannon were both overwhelmed. “We’re are all extremely proud of everyone involved, we’ve all worked really hard”, commented Daisy. Keziah added, “We must be favourites to win the Wyke College Team of the Year at Wyke Sports Presentation, bring it on!”.