Show The Red Card For Racism !!

Preston Lodge held a very successful, and thought provoking, Anti – racism day earlier this year with contributions from many departments.

One task  for pupils was to design a t-shirt with an anti – racist message.

Three pupils came up with an inspirational  design each – Graeme Minski (S3), Amy McInness (S4 ) and Laura Tunbull (S4). Ms Todd and Ms Morris were so impressed by these designs that they have entered them into the SQA’s Red Card for Racism competition – the first time PLHS have entered.

We wish Graeme,  Amy and Laura  Good Luck !

S1 Meet a Jacobite !

Alan, from Charging through History, came into school and spent the morning with the entire S1. He spoke briefly about the Jacobite Rebellions and , off course , the Battle of Prestonpans .   Pupils quickly came to learn that the Jacobite Rebellions were not just a Scots vs English conflict !  Alan also dispelled the idea  of Mel Gibson pulling a broadsword over his head from a baldrick  ….. unless  he had seven foot arms !  The pupils then watched a very moving film on Culloden which showed the brutality of 18th century warfare .

Then the hands on session ! Some pupils had the chance to dress up in plaid and all pupils were given the chance to hold a broadsword and  a Brown bess musket rifle. Pupils commented on how heavy these were  and how difficult it would have been to fight with them.

Alan’s enthusiasm for the Jacobite period shone through and was very much appreciated by the pupils ! Again, the pupils were excellent and  they were a  credit to the school.

We Won !!!

Last week the BBC contacted PLHS to say that James Armstrong and Kyle Davidson , both S2, had been successful with their entry into the BBC Competition : ‘Your Landscape Story : Our Crew ! ‘

In 300 words the boys had to tell their Landscape Story. Their story focuses on the landsape and history of this area. It looks at why, and where , the Battle of Prestonpans took place . The boys said that they would like to produce a film which would be a documentary / drama about the Battle – its effect on Prestonpans in 1745 and how it affects  Prestonpans today.

The boys stated that they could get their information, for the film  ,from a variety of sources –  from archaeologists from Glasgow University who were involved in  a dig at the battle site last year; from the Prestonpans re- enactment society,  from visiting Prestongrange Museum ….. all of these must have impressed the judges !

So, on Tuesday 15th June, a camera crew and technicians  from the BBC will come into PLHS to work with James , Kyle and 14 other lucky S1/2 pupils to help them produce their film .

 We can’t wait to see it on the BBC ! Well done James and Kyle !

Bannockburn and Stirling Castle 2010


Yet again Bannockburn, and Stirling Castle , were under siege from sixty S1 History students ! (bravely accompanied by Ms Duthie, Mr Lanyon, Mr Sellwood, Mr Bishop, Mr Nicholson and Ms Morris  !)

Pupils were interested in  watching Mark, at Bannockburn  ,show  the  correct use of medieval weapons  such as the broadsword, mace and crossbows.  Tehy could not believe how many ways there was to cut off a head using medieval weapons !   The pupils were  also engrossed  by the  new film which shows  Robert the Bruce’s victory at Bannockburn (even Messers Lanyon and Sellwood were impressed !). The fun part was dressing up in chain mail and realising how heavy it was !

Then  lunch , quickly followed by Stirling Castle. Again, pupils were impressed by the hammerbeam roof of the Great Hall ( no metal nails were used !) and by the fact that people in the Castle would have eaten swans, pig heads and partridges !!  Then came  the opportunity to dress as lords, ladies in waiting ,jesters and page boys. Great fun !

On the bus home , a chance for everyone  to show their knowledge in a dastardly quiz produced by Mr Sellwood.  The winners – The Auld Yins : Bishop,Morris and Nicholson !!!

Another GREAT trip ! Roll on next year !!!

[rockyou 157659892]

Edinburgh Castle Trip May 2010

On a sunny day at the beginning of May a small but very select group of S3 History students had the pleasure of accompanying Mr.Stewart (a maths teacher!!) on a trip to Edinburgh Castle.

The focus of the trip was a presentation on life in the Castle at the outbreak of WW1. We were met by our guide Bob who was dressed as a WW1 Sergeant in the Cameron Highlander.

Bob gave us a tour of the some of the areas of the Castle most important in the period 1914-18, then explained what life was like for Highland soldiers before, during and after their time in the trenches.

We visited the Scottish National War Memorial and then awaited the 1 o’clock gun. Bob arranged for us to get right up to the gun – (at 5 past 1) – where Sergeant James Shannon (The Gunner) explained the history of this ceremony and his role.

[rockyou 157660476]

S2 History Trip December 2009

Yet again, on a very cold December day, 30 S2 pupils, accompanied by Ms Fulford (a maths teacher!!), Ms Duthie and Ms Morris , braved the horrors of The Surgeons Hall Medical Museum and Ms Morris’s Masterly  Museum of Scotland quiz !!

The S2 group were fascinated by the descriptions of early operations without anaesthetics and had the chance to handle surgical implements from the 1880’s onwards.

They had the chance to practise keyhole surgery techniques and there was also a trepanned skull to examine  as well !

The sketch of a  dog, in pain, used in a 19th century blood transfusion certainly caught the pupils interest too !

Gorey stuff ! All part of the S2 medicine course.

And the winners of the Museum quiz ….. Ms Morris’s group, of course !!

[rockyou 157660190]

S2 Human Rights Lesson

Since November, the Second years in the R.M.E department have been exploring the issues of Human Rights. We have been discovering the different opinions on the importance and uses of Human Rights and investigating if they are put into place to ensure everyone on the Planet has them.

Through a different range of tasks, we have been looking at the different efforts that Organisations and Groups have been making to try and improve the rights that people may or may not be receiving. We had visits from our local youth worker, Nicola Bruce and three of our communities’ ministers, Rev Dr Robin Hill, Rev Jamie Griggs and Rev Robert Simpson who ran group-work sessions highlighting the work of Christian views to human rights.  From this session, students also learned about lots of different Christian based Human Rights Organisations such as World Vision and Oxfam and the work they do to improve the conditions of people in our country as well as the rest of the world.

human-rightsStudents have also been investigating other large initiatives aimed to improve the living and working conditions of some of the Worlds poorest people and concentrated a large portion of time looking at Fair-Trade. To try and raise awareness of the different groups and organisations, there is a massively vibrant and colourful display  in the RME corridor that not only catches the eye, but contains lots of information that aims to inform. These posters were voted for by the Students themselves as the best and most informative pieces of work.

The Second Year have demonstrated throughout this course of work that they have the confidence to question there own pre-conceptions, having been asked and asking themselves about the things in life they truly value. They have successfully been able to take their values and beliefs and apply them to different settings. They have developed the tools to contribute their thoughts and opinions in a valuable and effective way. And above all they have learned about the responsibilities that they have as a Global Citizen to be aware of the issues

S4 Euthanasia Seminar

Famous author - Sir Terry Pratchett will call for a tribunal to be set up where people can apply for legal permission to end their lives

Famous author - Sir Terry Pratchett will call for a tribunal to be set up where people can apply for legal permission to end their lives

The fourth year have done themselves, the RME department and the school proud this week by taking part in a seminar on euthanasia conducted by a team of dedicated professionals. The fourth year have impressed with their level of participation, their willingness to learn, their respect for the views of others and lastly their good manners on receiving visitors into their school.

Three of our communities ministers, Rev Dr Robin Hill, Rev Jamie Griggs and Rev Robert Simpson, together with our local youth worker, Nicola Bruce collaborated to present the seminar examining Christian attitudes to Euthanasia. Our guests demonstrated beautifully a spirit of compassion and understanding through their obvious fondness for one another and respect for each others views despite a possible conflict of opinion. The team were equally impressed with the pupils and particularly a group cutting a name for themselves in the RME department; Cameron Purves, Tara Guiney, Marwan Chouh, and Chloe Reid.

Euthanasia is an issue which will, at some point, touch the lives of most people making it an issue which has gained an extremely high profile in the media and modern political and academic debate. The MSP Margo McDonald is putting up a fight to have euthanasia and assisted suicide legislated in Scotland. On Monday, in the famous Dimbleby Lecture, Sir Terry Pratchett “made a provocative call for assisted suicide to be legalised.” Might this indicate public favour? The matter of legislature is one that concerns our S4 who have developed a firm understanding of the issues involved; like who make s critical decisions and how can we safeguard against unnecessary deaths?

This week’s seminar was an opportunity for us all to be reminded of our goals when considering such important ethical issues regardless of our religious identity; that man is capable of compassion and this compassion should guide us in our ethical endeavour.

A Visitor From one of the Happiest Places on Earth; Bhutan

The RME department have been extremely fortunate this week in welcoming Dawa into the department to talk to us about her country, Bhutan.

Firstly, Dawa spent a period on Tuesday afternoon with the Higher RMPS class discussing how cultural Buddhism embodies the philosophical principles of traditional Buddhism. This was an extremely valuable exercise for those who participated as they came away with an understanding of Buddhism that might only have been better achieved by a trip to Asia itself, the home of Buddhism.

On Wednesday morning Dawa was back again; this time talking to the second years about the nature of rights and the nature of happiness. The second year was captivated by Dawa’s pride filled description of Bhutan’s sophisticated policies on Gross National Happiness. Dawa answered question after question tirelessly from the intrigued second years who marvelled at the idea of measuring a countries progress by happiness instead of economic growth. In particular a cohort of pupils who demonstrated beautifully the skills necessary to become responsible citizens and confident individuals; Siobhan Sharp, Connor Woods, Ian Crawford, Michael King, Craig Cunningham and Melissa Burns.

Holocaust Memorial Day Film

This short film was produced by Preston Lodge High School students, as part of their efforts to commemorate Holocaust Memorial Day on 27th January 2006.

Since being posted on YouTube in December 2006 this 7 minute video has been viewed more than 56000 times, by people all around the world.

Unfortunately due to the East Lothian Council – Internet Access Policy, “YouTube” is blocked in schools, as a result the embedded video below will not be viewable in school.

Watch out for this years Holocaust Memorial Video coming to this page soon!

[kml_flashembed movie="" width="425" height="350" wmode="transparent" /]