Warminster School’s annual Curriculum Enrichment Day
Each year Warminster School, an English boarding school in Wiltshire, holds a Curriculum Enrichment Day (CED), which takes learning out of the classroom, crosses subject boundaries and combines the talents of students from years 7 to 13, as they work together within their House groups to solve a problem or create a product.
The latest CED was held just before school closed for the Christmas holidays, with pupils of Arnold, Denys and Ken Houses presenting the results of weeks of research, preparation, design and collaboration. This year’s proposal was “A necessity before you need it”: with a clear focus on STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Art+Design and Maths) the teams were challenged to produce the prototype of a product that could become something that the public desperately “needed”.
Having risen to the challenge of a project they could really get their teeth into, the students were excited to showcase their hard work and “sell” their product to the judges; demonstrating their inspiration, ideas, business plan, prototype, costs and environmental impact.
This year’s judging panel consisted of three experts in the field of product design and marketing, led by Libby Meyrick, Chief Executive of the Institution of Engineering Designers. The IED is a Chartered Body representing over 5,000 members working in engineering and product design. A scientist who has worked in engineering for over 20 years, Libby is passionate about encouraging the next generation of young people into the world of science and engineering.
Also on the panel was Warminster’s Head of Hockey, Year 7 tutor and Assistant Housemaster, Jeremy Evans, who, whilst studying for his degree in Design and Technology, was headhunted by a design agency and during his subsequent 15 years at the agency became Senior Design and Account Manager, with clients including Jaguar and Austin Martin. The third judge was the School’s Head of Communications, Emma Brumby, who started out in a London based marketing and events company, and who loves anything digital, creative and Twitter.
The judges were impressed by the standard of work, from the informative work on display to the presentation of the inventions through music, drama and advertising campaigns, as well as in a heated three-way debate. The inventions themselves were remarkable and, summing up the day, Libby commented that witnessing these innovative ideas had given her hope for the future of product design. Arnold’s “Air-desk” offered the opportunity to work just about anywhere; Denys’ tracking device promised to keep the vulnerable safe, and Ken’s food app claimed to be the answer to the world’s food waste problem. All three were of a high standard but there can only ever be one winner, so congratulations go to Arnold House as winners of CED 2017.
All the age groups worked well together on their individual products. There was a supportive atmosphere and a real sense of community, with many of the pupils commenting on what a positive experience it had been. One Year 13 pupil summed it up, saying: “I believe CED brings the school together and highlights its values as a community – with pupils ranging from Years 7 to 13, all working in collaboration to achieve the same goal”.
For us this is a great example of how our British boarding schools go above and beyond standard teaching practises to inspire their students. If you’d like your child to experience something similarly inspiring, please contact us.
Image courtesy of Warminster School.