Pushing intellectual boundaries at Portsmouth High School | Portsmouth High School

Pushing intellectual boundaries at Portsmouth High School

Portsmouth High School’s gifted, able and talented enrichment (GATE) coordinator, Dr Stockton-Chalk, sets extended projects each year for pupils in Years 7, 8 and 9.

Pupils are given the opportunity to take responsibility for a project, show confidence in themselves and push their intellectual boundaries within the context of working independently. This year’s titles were:

Year 7: Great Britain?

Year 8: Can we stop climate change?

Year 9: Has the world changed forever?

During the two-week project all regular homework is suspended and pupils work on their individual assignments. In order to grow competence in risk taking, develop confidence, critical and creative thinking, they are asked to produce an independent piece of work to encompass the concepts perceived in the title of their assignment.

The idea of this piece of work is to provide a blank canvas for our pupils; to give them the opportunity to show their strengths and to develop their ideas as they wish without being told what to do; to give them the chance ‘to fly’. The girls progress their work every weekday evening in place of regular homework. After submission, the completed work is assessed, and feedback made to the girls.

GATE coordinator, Dr Stockton-Chalk, said ‘The pupils enjoy the freedom presented by this enterprise and some excellent pieces of work have resulted from this initiative. This year submitted works are bountiful in depth, creativity, and enthusiasm. They reflect our girls working at their best and we could not be more proud’.