Enrichment | Clubs
Enriching the Curriculum
Teaching colleagues are passionate about making learning in their subject applicable to life outside of school. At the Westgate School, pupils will have opportunities to participate in planned enrichment activities that are integral to the way in which our curriculum is taught. Examples of this might include field work in Geography, outdoor learning in the primary phase and regular theatre visits to enrich pupils’ learning in Drama. Learning beyond the classroom begins in the Early Years Foundation Stage where the concept of free-flow, children moving their learning to different settings, is encouraged and supported through the design of our fantastic buildings.
Similarly, we encourage pupils to learn together through enrichment activities such as participating in our regular music concerts. Our musical groups and choirs are varied and represent a range of experiences. It is also not unusual to see adult members of our school community participating in musical events – another example of our community of learning in practice.
In the Lower School, pupils will take part in music and drama, supported by older pupils and specialist teachers. A highlight of our school calendar is our carol concert in Winchester Cathedral which sees performances representative of all members of our learning community, including the participation of all pupils in Year 7. The Westgate School is a flagship school for Hampshire Music Service with whom we enjoy a close partnership to the benefit of our young musicians.
In addition to structured enrichment activities, the School has a wide range of clubs that support learning and foster enthusiasm for a subject. Pupils can choose to attend Art or Humanities clubs where they are immersed in extended learning and are supported informally by specialist teaching colleagues. Our Home Learning Club offers additional support where pupils can enjoy working in our Learning Resource Centre with other pupils providing support or, with the help of older pupils.
The Westgate School has a long history of academic excellence; enrichment activities are not only part of this, but are central to our school’s ethos. As a member of The Westgate community, excellence is both about achieving good results and, demonstrating excellent learning skills. We celebrate this not only through academic results, but through participation; our annual Sports Presentation Evening the School’s Honours Evening recognise individual journeys to excellence in a wide range of learning experiences. Each year we mark the achievements of our Year 11 pupils with a Presentation Evening - a very proud evening for our school
The Westgate Community Challenge
All pupils are part of The Westgate Community Challenge which is linked to our house system, all-through. When joining our school, pupils are members of a class/tutor group as well as a vertical house structure. Throughout the year pupils participate in whole school activities – such as sports day – as well as contribute through pupil leadership groups and by participating in extra-curricular music or opportunities such as the debating club. Pupils earn points for their house through our daily stamps (secondary phase – reported to parents through EduLink) as well as receiving additional merits in recognition for exceptional contribution, effort or achievement
Deep Learning Days & Days of Culture
At The Westgate School we believe that deep learning is the key to success: children and young pupils must have opportunities to spend extended amounts of time practising their skills and gaining knowledge on a conceptual level. To that end, our school year is punctuated by days when the timetable will be adjusted to allow pupils to spend a whole day in a specific area of learning that may be linked to their GCSE option choices or indeed, may follow a whole school theme. During Deep Learning Days, it is not unusual to see older pupils working with younger pupils or indeed, learning in different settings and benefitting from the rich learning environment that our setting has to offer. As part of our Perspectives programme, all pupils are involved in learning about different cultures as part of deep learning days.
The Ardeche & Other Residentials
Our annual water sports trip and other residentials take place throughout the year, starting with a Year 7 residential in the autumn term. The Ardeche is a twin centre setting – the Mimosa Centre in the Mediterranean and the Domaine de Segries activity centre in the Ardeche. As well as a three day exhilarating canoe descent of the Ardeche gorge, pupils will also experience windsurfing, kayaking and sailing to name but a few. Fully qualified instructors lead all activities, supervised by colleagues from The Westgate. This trip is a fantastic opportunity for pupils in Key Stage 3 to learn in a different setting and in partnership with adults and each other
The School regularly runs a ski-trip that is open to pupils in the Upper School. Pupils of all abilities and experience with skiing are welcome to participate on this trip which is led by qualified ski instructors in partnership with colleagues from our school.
Whether a beginner or experienced skier, this trip supports pupils in learning valuable skills of determination and learning together.
Summer and Overnight Camps
Every year we hold a Summer Camp at The Westgate School for pupils who have just left primary school and who will be joining us in September.
The camp provides an ideal opportunity for prospective pupils to meet their tutor group, meet some of their future teachers and familiarise themselves with the school grounds and layout.
During the Summer Camp, children take part in a wide range of fun and educational activities including drama, art, cooking, off-site trips and sport. The emphasis is on making learning fun and preparing the new pupils so that they settle more easily into school when they arrive in September.
The camp runs from 9 am until 4 pm every day for three days. Pupils may attend an individual day but it is recommended that they attend all three. Pupils can buy a full range of food from one of our catering outlets, The Hub or bring their own packed lunches.
Once our pupils have joined us we then run an overnight camp for each House. During this on-site event pupils have a chance to bond even closer with their Tutor group and continue with their experiences of working together and building resilience.