From understanding comes strength



The Donald Dewar Memorial Debate Tournament

Congratulations to pupils Emma and Alice who competed last month in the Donald Dewar Memorial Debate Tournament at St Margaret’s School.  

Established in 1999, the Donald Dewar Memorial Debating tournament, dedicated to the memory of the former First Minister Donald Dewar MSP, is Scotland’s largest annual schools debating tournament.

The girls debated the motion, “Google does more harm than good”, performing well but unfortunately not progressing to the next round.

Soul Academy night raises just under £2000!

On Saturday the school’s impressive soul band, Soul Academy, showcased their talent and entertained over 100 people at the Banchory Scout Hut to raise money for brand new stage lights for the drama department.  A massive thank you to the band for their hard work over several months preparing for the gig, to all the people who bought tickets and supported the event, and to the fantastic team of organisers and helpers for making this event happen! ….[More]….

Do you have what it takes to become a dynamic leader and change yourself and the world? Rotary Youth Leadership Awards (RYLA) is an intensive leadership experience organized by Rotary clubs and districts where you develop your skills as a leader while having fun and making connections.

Pupils who will be 16 by July 2019 are invited to apply for a place on the Rotary Youth Leader Award scheme. Click here for further details and see Ms McIlraith if interested.

Rotary Youth Leader Award scheme 2019

S2 Pupil Wins International Coding Competition

Congratulations to S2 pupil Jamie Holroyde, who has won the Games, Digital art and Animation category of an international coding competition with his animation of Kepler’s planetary orbits.

Run by CoderDojo, the competition had a theme of “thankfulness”. Entrants were required to say what they were “thankful” for and submit a link to the project (if in the coding language Scratch) or a video of the result if in another programming language.    Jamie’s program calculates the animation speed of all the planets and generates their relative positions on a grid and plots them in real time.   The program uses Kepler’s law to calculate the position of each planet every 24 hours. As a starting point for the calculation it uses the planet’s aphelion (maximum distance from the Sun) and its maximum orbital velocity.

This is a really difficult category to win in, as designing games and animations is very popular among young coders. To win against entries from all over the world, is amazing.

Seasons for Growth for S1 – S3

Seasons for Growth is a loss and grief peer-group education programme for young people. Seasons for Growth is based on the belief that change, loss and grief are normal and valuable parts of life. It aims to produce a sense of resilience, personal growth and acceptance of change in people’s lives. The programme focuses on issues such as self-esteem, managing feelings, problem solving, decision-making, effective communication and support networks. We will be visiting S1 – S3 PSE classes over the next couple of weeks to inform pupils about the programme. An informal drop in session for parents and carers of pupils in these year groups, who would like their child to participate, will be held on Tuesday 29th January 2019 at the Hill of Banchory Family Centre from 5-6:30pm.  Seasons for Growth will commence on Tuesday the 19th February 2019 & will be facilitated by Lilimar Simpson (Community Learning Worker) & Anna Carey-Miller (Pupil Support Worker).

The world of work never stops changing which means the jobs available to your child now may not be available in the future. Set up by ‘Skills Development Scotland’, My Kid’s Career has got all the information you need to support those important career decisions including jobs in demand, Career paths, and Career discussions. Click here to visit their website

S2 Techfest Visit - Heroes of Tomorrow Event

Visit to TECHFEST - 'Heroes of Tomorrow' event at RGU on Wed 16th Jan.  The S2 Science Club (Tamara Bradley, Elsa Stutter, Anna Marr, Skye Buck, Catriona Chapman, Orla Cunningham, Alice Walker, Caitlin Bertram, Grace Walker, Kirsty Abernethy, Jamie Holroyde, Jonas Newey)

All attended this fantastic event run by TECHFEST and Equinor which aims to spark young people's interest in STEM and provide insight into future career paths within the energy industries.  They experienced an exciting show from the Science Museum in London and took part in several workshops.  They also presented their Bronze Crest Award on Oral Rehydration Solutions to an extensive audience which that they had been working on in Science Club with a group of S6 pupils since September. A great day had by all.  Check out the brilliant video produced by Equinor of the Heroes of Tomorrow event: here

Pupil Annual Data Form

All S1, S2 & S3 pupils will be issued this week with their Annual Data forms.  We would appreciate the forms being checked by a parent/carer, any amendments made and then signed and returned to the school office ASAP.  

The S4 and S5 pupils will receive their Data Forms in the same envelope as their school report.  Please remember to sign the form before returning, even if no changes are made.  

Many thanks

School Office

World Para Alpine Skiing-Veysonnaz, Switzerland

Congratulations to S4 pupil Neil Simpson, who has successfully taken part in one of the 7 series of events as part of the Para Alpine World cup, this time in Veysonnaz, Switzerland.

Neils results in the Giant Slalom races, with his older brother Andrew guiding, were a 5th on day 1, 4th on day 2 and 4th on day 3, just 0.34 sec behind the French.