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Jun 24

Gifted and Talented Experiences

Twenty Year 10 gifted and talented students recently spent a day at Bristol UWE, working with other gifted and talented students from across Bristol schools in a range of workshops that challenged them to consider different aspects of World War I in this, its centenary year. 


Students engaged in a range of projects across the curriculum areas from designing and building aeroplane wings with only materials available in 1914 to intercepting foreign messages and overcoming the difficulties of communicating through the trenches to get messages to the front line. Some students created 3D maps of the trenches while others attempted to feed an army on a ration.  


In one English workshop the morality of trench warfare was debated and students concluded the day by writing their own poems to an unknown soldier. This is the creation of Susanna Paynter, whose poem was chosen to be shared with the entire group of over 200 students and university lecturers during the presentations that brought the day to a close.


To an unknown soldier,

Husband, father, brother, friend,
You gave your tomorrow for
Good to triumph in the end.

You protected the women and children,
You stood for what is right,
For the greater good of your country,
You valiantly joined the fight.

You stood in the face of danger,
You helped to beat the foe,
Now those friends you left behind you
Must face this tale of woe.

And yet we are still thankful
For all that you have done
From your wife, your sister, your friend,
Your daughter and your son.

Susanna Paynter


The Year 8 and 9 Gifted and Talented cohort have also enjoyed a teambuilding and leadership experience. They joined together to perform a number of exciting problem solving tasks that enabled them to explore team dynamics.


Year 8 and 9 teambuilding



As summer approached fifteen Year 10 Gifted and Talented Artists and Photographers headed into the Brecon Beacons with students from Brislington Enterprise College to take part in an outdoor Art and Photography week.  They engaged in a range of workshops themed around their GSCE projects including outdoor sculptor within the landscape, figure sculptor, cyana type printing and light photography.  Below are some examples of the work students produced.


Brecon 1




Brecon 2



Brecon 3



A group of 15 year 9 maths G&T students attended an Economics, Finance and Management Day at the University of Bristol. The students took part in workshops and attended lectures on Accounting & Finance, Economics and Management by leading academics and had an opportunity to experience what a day at university would be like.


In July I went on a Salters Chemistry Camp. Four people from my triple science class were picked out of a hat and we all had to write an application form about why we wanted to go. There were camps all over England but Susanna Paynter and I were lucky enough to get into the Cambridge camp and experience  the facilities they have there! We spent two and a half days taking part in activities such as making glow torches and paint from scratch and having competitions against the other students, and in the evening we explored Cambridge city and met the other 60 students who came from all over the UK. My favourite part was making paints and meeting all the new people - I didn't enjoy the 5 hour car journey quite as much!

Kate Bentley



May 23

Amazing aerial shots of the school

Mrs Richardson, who has two children at SMRT, has sent us some amazing aerial shots of the school taken from a balloon.


I thought you might like these photos I took of the school from the air. Our balloon went right over the school and gave us a marvellous view. It was a great trip and a lovely birthday present for my husband. The girls came to watch us take off at Ashton Court. 

Mrs Richardson


Aerial shot 1 webcredited



Aerial shot 2 webcredited



Aerial shot 3 webcredited2






May 9

Spanish Guitar Ensemble play at the BMG Mandolin Rally

Our Spanish guitar students and their tutor Mr Ben Spender had the pleasure and privilege of performing at  the British Mandolin and Guitar Federation Rally which was held at St Mary Redcliffe and Temple School in March in the presence of hundreds of guitar enthusiasts, worldwide experts and author Louis de Berniere. Our students performance was very well received by the rally and our students performed at a very high standard.


Thanks to: 

A Schuman
R Lewis
A Temple
M Tilsey
J Muir
S Cadell
M Tekane
D Turner
M Butters (former pupil)
J Hartley

And Y Ji who was sound engineer for the day.


- Mr Hare, Music Teacher.



Mar 3

Campaigning Students Hit National News Website and Persuade the Secretary of State

Fatima, Kaltun and I are part of a group called 'Empowering' which is funded by Forward, a diaspora women’s charity. As a group we aim to raise awareness around the issue of female genital mutilation (FGM). The group created a teaching resource to help raise awareness of FGM in schools because we saw that there was a lack of education and knowledge around the issue and this needed to be addressed.


We then organised and hosted a conference which was attended by health and education professionals, police and other young people. At this conference we discussed the issue and concluded that we would need the support of all of the professions in the social sector to safeguard the young women at risk. We then had a radio interview at BCfm (Bristol Community FM radio) on zero tolerance day for FGM where we talked about the only way to tackle the problem would be to raise awareness and to let young women at risk know that they have a right to speak out against FGM.




Our primary aim as a group has been to get FGM taught in schools because we believe that it's 'Everybody’s business'. Through supporting the Bristol group Integrate and their petition to include it in the curriculum and through our recent work with The Guardian at a poetry and spoken word event in London, we are happy to say that The Secretary of State for Education, Michael Gove, has agreed to have FGM taught in schools!


We are now one step closer to ending FGM once and for all.





Jan 31

Paul's Fund Trek Up Mt Kenya

Paul Morton, a former SMRT student, died in his first year at University, in 2008. His parents set up the charity Paul’s Fund as a positive way of remembering Paul.

In December Dad, David along with Jo Stockdale and Rachael Lilley, two close friends of Paul, set off on a climb of a lifetime when they ascended Mt Kenya to raise funds for the charity. Mt Kenya is the highest mountain in Kenya and the second highest in Africa after Kilimanjaro.


David recounts the following:


"We added the SMRT logo to our Mt Kenya banner and as the photos demonstrate, we completed the climb successfully, with banner!


After a 2 day walk in and one day’s acclimatisation, we set off up the final 3,000ft climb at 3.00am in the dark, reaching the summit of Pt Lenana just as the sun was coming up. It was epic!

Rachael showed a great deal of determination to get to the top despite quite severe altitude sickness. The descent was not entirely straightforward as she needed a lot of help to get back down, but once back at camp she made a steady recovery and was none the worse for the experience apart from vowing never to go to altitude again!

Although we don’t have the final total yet, the fund raising has also gone well and I expect we will raise in excess of our £4,000 target."

David Morton




A little bit about Paul's Fund and what it provides:

Young adults who have been bereaved, or diagnosed with a terminal or life threatening illness, or who are themselves caring for a family member, can apply to Paul’s Fund for a grant to pay for themselves, along with one or more family members or close friends, to have a holiday break staying at Paul’s Place, a B&B and place of retreat with self catering facilities in Georgeham near Croyde on the North Devon coast.

Paul’s Fund relies entirely on donations in order to make grants.


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