Category Archives: Events

‘Positively MAD’ visit UAK to deliver interactive learning experience

Students at University Academy Kidsgrove (UAK) attended a highly-interactive and multisensory learning experience on how to prepare for their exams by equipping them with a range of effective learning tools and exam preparation skills.

Positively MAD is one of the country’s leading providers of student workshops, teacher training and world-class supportive resources. Positively MAD’s inspiring and dynamic delivery provided the Year 10 students with a theatrical and interactive experience challenging them to see learning in a new light. 

They took part in Exam Busters, a two-hour course which aims to deliver a refreshing learning experience to boost exam performance and provide simple but effective techniques to better organise workload and improve exam preparation and performance.

Throughout the course, students were introduced to the concept of the regular review process and given the tools to follow through with this. They were also shown how to relax when preparing for exams and how they can create an effective learning environment to prepare for their summer exams.

Jessica C, Year 10 student, said: “The Exam Busters course gave me some really good tips to help me learn new techniques to revise.”

Tyler CM, Year 10 student also said: “I really enjoyed the session by Positively MAD. It was interactive and engaging!”

Academy students embark on a journey through time at Natural History Museum

Students at University Academy Kidsgrove (UAK) embarked on a journey through time as they discovered some of the biggest mammals in the animal kingdom and wandered among ancient fossils from the Dinosaur era at the Natural History Museum.

On Thursday 23rd January, Year 8 students visited London’s Natural History Museum to learn more about the topics covered in the Geography course including volcanoes, earthquakes and paleogeography – the study of geographical features at periods in the geological past.

The Natural History Museum offers a range of interactive and curriculum-linked exhibits for schools. Students were given the opportunity to delve into the stories about the Museum’s collections, exhibits and research as they uncovered the history of life on Earth, from the smallest insects to the largest mammals.

Students began their journey by exploring the natural power of volcanoes and earthquakes through dramatic film footage, interactive games and exhibits available at the museum. One particular highlight for the students was a shaky encounter at the museum’s famous earthquake simulator.

Students then embarked on a seven-million-year journey through human evolution and fossil artefact discoveries to help them better understand the evolution process. Students explored the innovative techniques and DNA research which are transforming scientists’ understanding of our ancient past.

Students then explored the different time periods dinosaurs lived and learnt about the facts and myths how dinosaurs died out. The exhibits included the first fossil ever found from a Tyrannosaurus rex, the skull of plant-eating Triceratops and the fossil of one of the largest meat eaters ever unearthed in Europe.

Students concluded their visit at the Museum’s vast entomology collection where they identified the oldest and most important collection of 34 million insects and arachnids gathered from over 300 years.

Before returning to Kidsgrove, students spent time in the capital city as they took the time to visit a number of tourist destinations including the Albert Memorial, Park Lane, Kensington and Harrods, Marble Arch and the Edgware Road.

Mr Smith, Teacher of Geography said: “The whole point of fieldtrips in geography is to help bring the subject to life. In this case students got to try out an earthquake simulator and appreciate first-hand what Kidsgrove would have been like in the Jurassic by meeting a real T-rex. Just to see kids buzzing with excitement is what makes the subject so fantastic to teach”

Natasha, Year 8 student also said: “It’s been a long and tiring day but really worth it. Not only have I had the chance to see close up what we’ve learnt about in lessons but now I actually own a Velociraptor. I love geography its really interesting and exciting. It makes me appreciate the amazing world around me”

Young engineers ‘gear up’ to manufacture their own electric powered race car

Pupils from University Primary Academy Kidsgrove (UPAK) are gearing themselves up to work with students at University Academy Kidsgrove (UAK) on a project to design, engineer and manufacture their own electric powered race car.
Teams from Year 3 to Year 6 in UPAK have been working alongside Year 11 students at UAK to construct a single seat race car which will be electrically powered as part of the Green Power Scheme.
The project aims to enable children to develop their STEM skills through the application of Design Technology, Mathematics and Science into a physical artefact. The project has given both boys and girls a chance to work and learn together in teams, through the excitement of motorsport and STEM. The children work on the project every Thursday after school as part of their extra-curricular activities. A range of year groups and mixed abilities have been working together to apply their skills and knowledge to a real life situation.
Mr McCue, Teacher at University Primary Academy Kidsgrove said: “The children have really worked hard to develop the car. They are working with Year 11 ambassadors from UAK in small assembly teams to develop their own part of the project. The chassis team completed their construction last lesson and now the steering, electrical and drivetrain teams are attaching their parts. It has been really exciting seeing the car take shape ready for the summer race season.”
Rick P, Year 5 pupil said: “I am really enjoying building the car. I started the car from the very beginning and I am happy to see it so close to being ready to drive.”
Taylor B, another Year 5 pupil added: “I like to make things. I like being able to use maths by making things work. I think I learn more when I can do things instead.”
The children aim to complete the project in time for the Summer racing season.

Staff prepare for the Duke of Edinburgh Award with Wayahead Training

With trepidation, staff at University Academy Kidsgrove (UAK) assembled in the conference room armed with a ball point pen and a willingness to learn!

It is mandatory that all leaders of Duke of Edinburgh groups have up to date Outdoor First Aid training. Teachers, Mrs Weaver, Mrs Sexton, Mr Birchall, Mr Till, Mr Smith and Mr Twigg all took part in the training programme which involved the great indoors, what to do in an emergency situation on a mountainside, armed only with a large orange bag and a group of volunteers!

The course was expertly delivered by Matt Hutson and Rob Boyllin from Wayahead Training. Their ability to deliver complex information in a stimulating and memorable way was great. Training and scenarios are based on being more than several minutes up to several hours from help until the rescue team arrives. From ABC to CPR via AVPU and SCALD the course was a true acronym fest punctured often by lungs, alongside fractures, stings and poisons, all potentially life-threatening if not identified promptly and treated correctly.

The next Duke of Edinburgh training weekend will include camping in the stunning Peak District scenery during Winter with Night Navigation and Camp Mountain Leader Training.

Academy students to inspire the next generation to lead the way through culture

Students at University Academy Kidsgrove (UAK) are working on a project to encourage young people to create and deliver cultural events for their own communities.

Newcastle Borough Council, in partnership with Appetite, have been awarded funding from the Police Commissioner’s Proceeds of Crime Fund to deliver the programme.

Year 10 students from the University Academy Kidsgrove (UAK) attended a cultural sector training workshop designed for groups and communities across Stoke-on-Trent.

Students are working with Appetite Stoke to create and deliver an exciting cultural event for the Kidsgrove community. Appetite is a Stoke-on-Trent based arts programme, led by the New Vic Theatre that aims to get more people in Stoke-on-Trent and the surrounding areas to experience and be inspired by the creative arts.

Appetite will work with students through workshops to explore everything from planning and managing an event to raising funds and marketing. The students will work with experts from across the arts industry to create an event where plans so far include a circus performance, a battle of the bands and food stalls. The event will be held at the Clough Hall Park, this June.

The training programme will be taught through seminars, workshops and presentations from leading cultural professionals, with practical workshops focusing on participant’s own ideas for their events and festivals, plus one-to-one advisory sessions. The idea is that students are self-motivated to create a local event for the community.

The aim of the project is to include music, art, theatre and dance. Students will receive a budget for their event and will also provide great opportunities and experiences for students.

The students have taken their tasks on board with great enthusiasm and commitment and will receive support and training around governance and development; legal matters; strategic planning; programming; project management; marketing; production management; fundraising and evaluation and monitoring.

Year 10 student Jessica said: “This is a great opportunity to show the town what we are made of and how we can organise something exciting for the community. Jessica added “Appetite is a great way for young people to work and bring our community together.”

For more information about Appetite Stoke visit:


SPORTS NEWS: UAK vs Chesterton Community College

SPORT NEWS: After a disappointing start in a match where the Year 9 boys went 2-0 down within the first 15 minutes, the team (which included three Year 8 students) rallied hard and fought back to earn a fantastic 2-2 draw away at Chesterton Community Sports College on Friday 19th January 2018.

Thanks to some heroic defending by Charlie, Joe, Mackenzie and Kian, unbelievable vision by midfielder Jake, and composed finishing by striker Tom, the boys fully deserved their point and might feel unlucky to have not grabbed a late winner. Jamie, Sam, Dylan and Jenson were brilliant as always, and goalkeeper Liam made two superb saves to keep the team in the game at 2-0 down.

Well done to everybody involved!


Academy students recreate memories for local care home residents with stunning wall art


A group of creative Year 11 students from University Academy Kidsgrove (UAK) have been pooling their talents to brighten the days of residents from a local care home.

Maple Tree Court provides residential and dementia care for up to 64 older people in the Stoke-on-Trent area and is located near the Academy in Kidsgrove. The care home opened in 2015 with impressive facilities including a tea room, activities room and a number of cosy, quiet lounges. Residents requested the help of Academy students to brighten up some of the walls and they duly obliged, creating some eye catching wall art.

Mrs S Bailey, Art Teacher at UAK, tasked students with creating a range of designs which were then shared with the residents. Each of the designs was based around the theme of ‘memories’ and the chosen designs included a Spitfire, bottle kilns, a beach and Mow Cop. Once the residents had selected their favourite pieces, it was time for the real work to start and, after a series of long evening sessions, the students had transformed the walls into large displays, capturing historical moments from the local area and creating a colourful environment which the residents love.

Felicity A. Somerville, Interim Manager at Maple Tree Court said: “We were fortunate to have some very talented students from the University Academy in Kidsgrove come along and decorate two areas in the care home with wall art. The residents chose the themes for each project. One was the Spitfire as designed by Reginald Mitchell, along with other local places of interest; the other group chose a beach scene. As you can see from the photos, the results are stunning and the residents are delighted and suitably proud of their designs brought to life by such gifted teams.”

Mrs Susan Bailey, Teacher of Art said: “I was very impressed with the students’ motivation and how much enjoyment they got out of the work they did at Maple Tree Court. They chatted with the residents and were keen to make the paintings the best they could be. The paintings took at least 8 hours to complete and the staff and residents were very grateful for the end results. The students involved should be very proud of themselves.”

The Year 11 students from UAK involved in this project were Katie Jones, Erika Jacques, Jessica Mountford, Mason Smith, Eleanor Walton, Rachael Taylor and Laura Knapper, along with their Art teacher Mrs S Bailey.

Open Evening Recap & Applications

It was great to meet so many new families at the University Academy Kidsgrove (UAK) Open Evening. We are extremely proud of our academy and were excited to give visitors a glimpse of what makes UAK unique and demonstrate the great things happening at our academy.

If you would like to book a tour on one of our Open Mornings then please contact us on 01782 948250 or email

Applications to join UAK in September 2018 are now open! If you wish to secure a place at please Click Here.

Andy Bygrave
University Academy Kidsgrove