Author Archives: BBailey

UAK said “On yer bike!” to unhealthy food this week with the great Smoothie Challenge

This week, students from University Academy Kidsgrove (UAK) were lining up to use a specially adapted bicycle which transformed pedal power into delicious and tasty smoothies.

The bike was provided by Catering Academy to highlight the importance of exercise and a healthy balanced diet.  The students got to choose their ingredients from a range of delicious fruits and yoghurts which were then placed into a blender.

The blender was then fitted onto the special bicycle.  After a vigorous bout of pedalling the ingredients transformed into a healthy and delicious drink.  One Year 9 student said: “It’s even more delicious because I earned it!”

Take a look at some of the photographs from the day.


Students challenge their Mathematics knowledge with Hegarty Maths

University Academy Kidsgrove (UAK) have recently signed a deal with Hegarty Maths. Hegarty Maths is a mathematics service created by World Teacher of the Year finalist, Colin Hegarty.

Colin Hegarty formally held a career in Finance before changing his job to become a Maths Teacher. Colin created thousands of help guides and videos for his pupils, which were quickly discovered by pupils and teachers nationwide. Colin made such an impact that he won 2014 Pearson Teacher of the Year Award in recognition.

In 2015, Colin also gained the support of Richard Branson, who was so impressed that he asked, “Why can’t you have been around 50 years ago, when I was in school?”. Hegarty Maths quickly gained international attention when his videos started helping pupils around the world, Colin was also a finalist in the prestigious Global Teacher of the Year Award.

Hegarty Maths aims to create a structure that benefits pupils learning and helps teachers understand how hard pupils worked at home – in his own words, “We knew we could get better…” so he created is an online system that tracks progress, recommends building blocks topics that help pupils who are struggling, stretches pupils with their next steps, analyses what pupils have struggled with and strengthen their knowledge.

One of the most powerful features is that teachers can reward effort and the progress on related topics by spending lots of time learning online, the teacher will know this. It also has built in systems to prevent copying.

When Colin heard that UAK were signing up for Hegarty Maths, Colin Hegarty said: “This is fantastic news and we are so excited to partner with you next year.”

The Maths department at UAK are also excited about it. students who have used Hegarty Maths are already impressed.

During the first week, year 9 student Jacob S had answered a staggering 451 questions correctly and pupils spent a total of 267 hours learning Mathematics online. For more details about Hegarty Maths, please visit

Additional Links & Further Information are available here:

Students create a ‘Wishing Tree’ for the residents at Maple Tree Court Care Home

Maple Tree Court Care Home approached UAK to create a ‘Wishing Tree’ for the residents to hang their wishes on.

This was to go in the main entrance. We asked the Technology department to cut out a tree outline which we then covered with small drawings of leaves made by our students. Katie D was in charge of cutting out the leaves and arranging them on the tree itself along with Jessica W.

We delivered the tree on Friday 13 July and the staff were very pleased with our creation.

Katie said: ‘It was good to see the tree come to life when we started sticking the individual leaves on it.’


The Great Kickroo coming to Clough Hall Park this July!

A group of Year 10 students at University Academy Kidsgrove (UAK) have been working with the Stoke-on-Trent based arts programme Appetite to create a cultural event for the community of Kidsgrove.

Join the Academy and Appetite Stoke for an afternoon of circus and performance in Clough Hall Park as we present the Great Kickroo on Saturday, July 14.

The Great Kickroo is an afternoon of performance and family fun in Clough Hall Park celebrating Kidsgrove and the history of this wonderful park, brought to you by University Academy Kidsgrove students. The Great Kickroo features an exciting line-up of juggling and circus acts, circus workshops, live music and more.

As well as an exceptional line-up of live music from local talent, two former students from the Academy are also set to perform at the event, which also includes: The Hairy Bartenders and Rhythm Works.

Over the past year, the students have been working with Appetite Stoke. Appetite aims to encourage more people in Stoke-on-Trent to experience and be inspired by the arts. Through the project, the group has taken part in a series of workshops, with mentors, exploring a range of skills from envisioning an event and raising funds to programming performances and learning how to market and budget.

The group have planned The Great Kickroo which was inspired by an old word for Kidsgrove and celebrates the heritage of Clough Hall Park. The students also met with local Historian, Phil Leese, who spoke about the history of Kidsgrove and the park itself which was formally known as the Paradise of Potteries in the 1800s.

Appetite’s Self Made Programme, part of the Appetite Cultural Academy, will see the organisation work with three groups of young people aged 13 to 18 living in the Newcastle borough, in the areas of Chesterton, Audley and Kidsgrove. Self-Made is an arts based programme in partnership with Newcastle Borough Council and funded by the Staffordshire Police and Crime Commissioner’s Proceeds of Crime Fund. Self-Made aims to inspire young people to make things happen for themselves and make a difference to the place they live in.

Mrs Yvonne Edgerton, Student Support at UAK said: “What a brilliant opportunity for our students to be involved in the world of the arts. This project has helped our students to gain confidence and believe in themselves. They have worked so hard and given up a lot of their spare time to ensure the success of The Great Kickroo.”

Ellie Hancock, Year 10 student said: “Leading up to the event, it has been good to see everything working out so well and we are now all excited for the big day.”

Grace Norcup, Year 10 student said: “It’s been inspiring. It gives you an idea of what it would be like to work for yourself.”

Liam Hodson, Year 10 student added: “I will remember this as the Day of Summer!”

The event will take place on Saturday, July 14, 11:00am – 4:00pm at Clough Hall Park and is FREE for the whole family to attend.

Students ‘light-up’ Astbury Mere Care Home with their artistic skills







Two students from the University Academy Kidsgrove (UAK) have used their talented artistic skills to create a wonderful garden feature for the residents at Astbury Mere Care Home, Congleton.

Year 10 students, Rhys Carter and Ellie Hancock from UAK have given up their spare time to create a magnificent outdoor Lighthouse feature for the residents at Astbury Mere Care Home.

The company logo includes a light house which symbolises “a port in a storm” providing support and guidance.


The students created a lighthouse which includes a bird feeding area and is powered by a solar panel lantern which lights up in the dark. Residents were shown images of the lighthouse during its construction and were finally able to witness the final piece on 3rd June when the students came to visit and install it.

This nautical themed area of the garden will soon include a planted boat including a sail and a floral display for the residents to enjoy and reminisce about past holidays or places they have lived or visited.


Everyone at Astbury Mere Care Home would like to say a huge ‘thank you’ to the students at University Academy Kidsgrove for making this fantastic feature to be enjoyed over many years to come.

Students visit Sorrento to develop their understanding of history and geography.


Lucky students from the University Academy Kidsgrove (UAK) have returned from the trip of a lifetime, after spending five days in the coastal town of Sorrento, in south-west Italy.

The students were immersed into the Italian culture to experience the various elements of their Geography and History courses at first-hand.

Sorrento faces the Bay of Naples on the Sorrentine Peninsula. It is perched on the top of cliffs that separate the town from its busy marinas and is best known for its sweeping water views.

In the shadow of olive and lemon groves, the students first embarked on a visit to the working farm Fondo Galatea. Students observed how local farmers produce famous Italian products, including mozzarella, olives, salami, lemons and more. The students then learnt about the production process and the origin of different foods as they took part in a food tasting exercise and discovered the roots of rural culture and farming.

Next, they made their way to Campi Flegrei, an active volcanic area to the west of Naples and home to Europe’s only super volcano. Campi Flegrei means ‘fire country’ and the students described the smell of burning sulphur in the air.


Afterwards, they visited the Flavian Amphitheater, the third largest Roman Amphitheatre in Italy, which gave students a deeper understanding into the world of Roman spectacle and gladiatorial combat. The arena could hold up to 50,000 spectators and most of its interior is still intact. The atmospheric corridors and subterranean chambers are filled with ancient stonework and objects. The openings in the ceiling and the long central ditch which divides the arena served to raise animal cages, performers, elaborate scenery, and decorations up to the surface via a sophisticated system of ramps and elevators.

The next day, students took a ferry trip to the affluent Isle of Capri, where they explored coastal landforms, erosion, stacks, caves and arches, which brought to life the work they had been doing back in the classroom. After exploring the crystal clear seas, students then had time to discover the beautiful city of Capri and some put into practice their outstanding Italian language skills with the locals.

A visit to Mount Vesuvius then followed, which is best known for its eruption in 79AD that led to the burying and destruction of the Roman cities of Pompeii and Herculaneum. The eruption ejected a cloud of stones, molten rock, ashes and volcanic gases to a height of 33km. The area is covered in dead and dying trees that provided evidence of the toxic gases regularly vented from the hot magma below.

Students then stepped back in time as they explored the city of Pompeii, a vast archaeological site in southern Italy. Once a thriving and sophisticated Roman city, Pompeii was buried under metres of ash and pumice after the catastrophic eruption. The preserved site features excavated ruins of streets and houses that can be freely explored.

On their final day, it was time to travel to Naples. Students took an underground tour of the Greek and Roman Napoli – an unexplored world, isolated by time. They explored how the ancients solved the problem of supplying enough water for Naples in a semi-desert area. After touring the streets of Naples, students then made their way to the airport to for the long journey back home to Kidsgrove.

Mr Smith, Geography Teacher at UAK said: “Visiting Sorrento really was an ideal opportunity to bring classroom teaching to life in the most vivid and immediate way and we would like to thank its students for immersing themselves in the experience to the utmost in order to build on their knowledge, to all of the staff who accompanied them and parents for their support.”