Parent Home Learning Survey

Many thanks to the 300+ parents who completed our home learning survey. With such a high turnout, the results have provided us with a far clearer understanding of how our students have responded to and been affected by, the move to remote learning.

I think the word unprecedented has never been used as much. The world we all found ourselves in on the 20th March as the school gates closed and the lockdown began, was something I never imagined I would ever experience. Even as the situation in China and then Italy, filled the news headlines, the possibility of school closure for a few weeks (never mind months!) seemed very unlikely.

The past term has been a steep learning curve as we have adapted to a new way of working and living; bringing with it new challenges and achievements. Setting work from home (or school on my key worker days) has been a strange experience. PowerPoints fine-tuned, narrations added, videos made, quizzes created and everything uploaded.

It was great to see that the hard work put in by the teachers at PGHS has paid off, with the vast majority of parents feeling that their daughters have appropriately been challenged during lockdown and that most have continued to enjoy their learning and make progress.


homelearningsurvey2.jpgIn a week when a government poll suggested that over 2million children were working for less than one hour a day, it was great to see that this was not our experience with our girls clearly working incredibly hard. We know this commitment to their studies reflects a range of factors, including the unstinting support of parents and the resilience and ambition of our students.

Throughout the home learning period, I have been involved in countless discussions with subject staff regarding the best way to teach remotely. Clearly, there is no perfect solution. Research by the EEF (Education Endowment Foundation) has shown that it’s the quality of the resource and the clarity of instruction, rather than the way it is delivered, that matters.

As a school we have opted for the on-demand approach, allowing students to access resources at a time that suits them (and their families) while enabling students to slow down and repeat lessons if necessary. We have been ever conscious of the ICT restrictions in some households, appreciating that not everyone has constant access to a quiet workspace and a personal PC. 

Throughout the lockdown period we have prioritised the mental health of our students, acknowledging that both the spread of coronavirus and the sudden and dramatic change in lifestyle will have caused considerable anxiety for some. Throughout the lockdown period, our team of pastoral staff have been working with parents and pupils to help those requiring support. It was therefore encouraging to see that so many parents reported no deterioration in their daughter’s wellbeing. If you feel your daughter would benefit from some pastoral support from school, Raising Achievement Coordinators can be quickly and privately alerted through the wellbeing function on ClassCharts.

Once again, many thanks for your support and help over the past three months. With the news today confirming that schools will be open to all students in all years on September 3rd for the start of new academic year, I’m sure we are all looking forward to a more normal Autumn.

Mr Ward, Senior Assistant Headteacher

Volcano Challenge

Every year during the ‘Hazardous Planet’ unit, we run our Volcano challenge for the Year 9’s. As a department, we decided that the lockdown would not stop this annual competition from taking place and challenged the students to be as creative as they could be and asked them to send us images/ videos of their models. We are delighted with the number of students that have participated in this challenge and the standard has been just as high as it has been in previous years.

We have had students making volcanoes from papier-mâché, builders’ foam, modelling clay and of course, the bakers created volcano cakes! Minecraft has also proved popular this year, perhaps for obvious reasons. There have been models accompanied by excellent Geographical research and erupting models from fireworks to the classic baking soda and vinegar combination.  We knew that some students might not be able to access some of the usual materials used to build a volcano and we have been impressed by the ingenuity and creativity on display (check out Mr Ward’s Highly Commended by Hannah E, for example)!

The department would like to say a massive thank you to all the students who have participated this year- we really appreciate the effort and dedication that has been put into these pieces of work over the May half term!

Classcharts Medals have been awarded to all entries and Head’s Commendations to many. The staff have also picked out three entries for Highly Commended certificates – these will be emailed out to the students and a prize will be given when we return to school!

Headteacher’s Commendations to:

Grace S, Marissa M, Senna H, Katrina N, Mya J, Alice C, Ellie R, Carla D, Aisha W, Olivia S, Mia B, Fareesha K, Charlie L, Chelsea J, Ella McB, Hannah E.

volcano3.pngMr Bowles Highly Commended Certificate – Charlie L – There are a couple of big Minecraft fans in my household so I know how long these creations can take to produce. I also know that making things exactly the way you want to in Minecraft takes more ingenuity and lateral thinking than it might first appear. Charlie had a visible volcano interior and lots of accurate volcanic features labelled. The continuous flow of lava is a nice touch that you can’t achieve with a physical model.

volcano2.pngMr Ward Highly Commended Certificate – I have decided to award my certificate to Hannah E as mentioned above.  Getting resources to build a volcano during lockdown was a challenge to many students but Hannah has persevered and improvised and built hers from cloths, a towel and Lego- I admire her effort! Furthermore, I also like how she has made her volcano erupt from mixing together different ingredients and how she has annotated an image of her work to highlight the key volcanic features. Superb work!

Miss Wignall Highly Commended Certificate – I have gone for Mia B, who created an OUTSTANDING model of Montserrat Island. I was really impressed with the level of detail Mia went into to ensure this model was very precise. She used a projector so that she could stencil the online of the island onto her piece of wood and then used a relief map of Montserrat so that she could build the Soufriere Hills and Chances Peak in the correct location from foam. Mia loves a challenge and took this to the next level by recording herself making the model from start to finish. She talks in her video about why she chose to focus on Montserrat, why she has used the equipment and resources she did, and spoke in depth about the volcanic eruption that took place in 1997 and the impacts that had on Montserrat. To top it off, she had a second eruption volcano model that she made whilst waiting for the first one to dry! Geotastic!!    Click on the link to watch Mia’s YouTube video:


Overall winner awarded to Mia B – the dedication, skill and Geographical knowledge on display here blew me away. Very well done, Mia! We hope to display your model in school in the near future.

Mr Bowles

Penwortham Girls’ High School Bronze Award


Penwortham Girls’ High School is extremely proud to have been awarded the Bronze award from UNICEF. UNICEF works with schools in the UK to create safe and inspiring places to learn, where children are respected, their talents are nurtured and they are able to thrive. The Rights Respecting Schools Award embeds these values in daily school life and gives children the best chance to lead happy, healthy lives and to be responsible, active citizens. We believe at Penwortham Girls’, it is vital that we educate students that the children’s rights are equal and universally applicable to all.

There are four key areas of impact for children at a Rights Respecting School; wellbeing, participation, relationships and self-esteem. We will now be working hard to turn our action plan into practice despite lockdown to achieve the Silver level. This award also complements the work on the Lancashire County Council Equality Charter, where we have already achieved the ‘Race’ and ‘Religion’ equality marks for excellent practice in promoting equality in these areas. We are currently working towards achieving the ‘Gender and Gender Variance’ and the ‘Socio-economic’ equality marks as part of our ongoing mission to ensure that all our students are given every opportunity to be successful and thrive in our school community.

In addition to this, we are excited to announce that we have recently gained the status of ‘Stonewall School Champion’. Stonewall is a charity dedicated to promoting equality and protecting LGBT+ rights.  As school champions we are aiming to further ensure that our school is a safe and inclusive environment for all our students.

We firmly believe that it is essential that everyone at Penwortham Girls’ High School should feel inspired, nurtured and able to thrive within our school community and we will continue to work to ensure that we champion equality and celebrate diversity with our students.

Mrs Hall (Deputy Headteacher) & Miss Starkie (Teacher of English)

Food preparation and nutrition

Year 10 will be completing a practice non-exam assessment that will allow them to research a world cuisine of their choice. Due to the BBC Good Food Show trip being cancelled this year, BBC Good Food are continuing to support schools with the exam tasks by launching two new aspects to their website that Year 10 students can use, as well as skills videos and a bank of recipes.

One feature supports the research section of ‘task 2’ and ‘world cuisines’ and can be accessed here:

The second feature looks at cooking during lockdown and can be accessed with the following link:

Key stage 3 students are following advice on healthy diets and are submitting pictures of their products on Class Charts.

Year 7 have made pizza toast and healthy sandwiches, with some students making their own bread using resources and videos from the ‘Food – a Fact of Life’ website.

Year 8 are making stir fry’s and healthy pasta meals to serve to their families. These meals include the skills of sauce making and safe handling of meat as an ingredient.

Year 9 have made bread as a staple food, serving the bread with an accompaniment. Photos for these products will be added to the CAT faculty twitter account (@CATfacultyPGHS) so that students can share their amazing skills and find inspiration during lockdown.

Follow the CAT Faculty on twitter (CATfacultyPGHS) where there will be updates and competitions from the British Nutrition foundation and food a fact of life. Advice on activities and remote learning as well as food education will also be featured.  

I have been overwhelmed by the responses and photos submitted by students since lockdown has occurred and am excited by the skills shown preparing, presenting, and serving family meals by students from every year group. Below is a selection from across key stage 3.

Mrs Khan, Food Technology Co-ordinator


Year 7 Quiz

Year 7 quiz- the results!

Before half term, I decided to set the year 7’s a quiz for their weekly form activity. The quiz had 5 rounds and in each round, there were 5 questions. Each round had a different theme which included school, animals, TV/film, geography (of course!) and a general knowledge round. I just want to say a massive thank you to all the students that participated in the quiz- I was pleased to see so many had joined in!

As promised, here are the 1st, 2nd and 3rd place winners:

1st place- Katie W (7P) with a score of 25/25

2nd place- Elena L (7S) with a score of 23/25

3rd place- Fallon B (7P) with a score of 22/25

Well done to the three winners above but THANK YOU again to everyone that participated- there will be another quiz soon!

Miss Wignall

Geography Department

  • Artsmark Platinum Award - Awards by Arts Council England
  • Lancashire Socio-economic Equality Badge
  • School Mental Health Award
  • Ofsted - Outstanding Provider
  • International School Award
  • Artsmark Platinum Award - Awards by Arts Council England
  • Lancashire Socio-economic Equality Badge
  • School Mental Health Award
  • Ofsted - Outstanding Provider
  • International School Award