From November 3rd to 7th 2008 BRGS held a China themed week.

Various activities and special assemblies were held culminating in a day of activities for Year 8 students on Friday November 7th.

Activities held included: Chemistry Fireworks, Cookery, Tai Chi, Craftwork, Origami, Kung Fu and Dragon Dances.

ICTStudents created animations based on the porcelain Willow patterns.

The Art and Technology Students created banners to hang in the school hall.

As part of the China week activities the chemistry department held a series of firework-related activities. Year 7 students Eloise Thomas and Rebecca Kerley wrote the following report:

“On the 4th, 5th and 6th of November we held our chemistry fireworks days. It began with everyone holding splints dipped in different chemicals over their Bunsen burners. We found that copper turned the flame green, potassium changed the flame colour to purple, lithium turned it to red and sodium changed the flame to orange.

When we put the iron filings over the flame, lots of sparks flew from it like a firework. Then, we put a magnesium ribbon over the flame, and it started to shine a dazzling white colour. We couldn’t look at it directly because doing so can burn your eyes!

Afterwards, in the fume cupboard, Mr. Hamer put ammonium dichromate into a dish and set it on fire. It started to look like a volcano and orange sparks flew from it. Then Mr. Hamer put some potassium chlorate in a test tube. He then melted it with a Bunsen burner and put in a gummy bear. The gummy bear burst into flames and made a noise that sounded like it was screaming! Afterwards, the test tube turned black.

Towards the end, Mr. Hamer sprayed the same liquids we used at the start, into a Bunsen flame and turned it different colours. Miss Bowden even poured some of the liquids onto heat proof mats. The mats were then set on fire and we saw different coloured flames.

We saw it three times and wouldn’t say no to seeing it again!”

Below are links to what some of the Chinese characters on the banners mean

Animals & Numbers

Characters

Festivals

Lucky Symbols

Symbols

Symbols 2

Willow Pattern Animations

As part of the Cross Curricula China week, Year 8 pupils studied the story behind the "Willow pattern" found on many of the copies of the blue-and-white porcelain imported into England from China during the last half of the eighteenth century.

In some of their English lessons they looked at the story and the characters and then in ICT lessons pupils were given the opportunity create animations to represent this story. Pupils used either Flash or PowerPoint to create some very effective animations. Some pupils have included Chinese music soundtracks which they created in their Music lessons.