Monday was our first full day in Paris. After breakfast we travelled on the metro to the Sacre Coeur. Mr Craik-Collins had the cheek to ask if we were brave enough to take the stairs to the top so naturally most of us took up the challenge. We entered the church through the grand arched doorway just as mass started. The building had dim lighting with shadows flickering on the stone floor from the candles we had lit with a donation of two euros for the upkeep of the church. Beams of light shone throughout the stain glass windows highlighting the detail of the hand carved stone. Near the cathedral was a market with painters selling their work and drawing pictures of passers by. Many of us had our likeness taken by a street artist, some drawings more realistic than others!
After another short ride on the metro we saw the beautifully carved Arc de Triomphe with the eternal flame for the unknown soldier burning brightly underneath. Stereotypically, the girls were very happy to hear they would be able to shop on the Champs Élysées and the boys were happy to eat lunch! There were many shops like Sephora, MAC and best of all…the Disney store.
After we had spent all of our money on ‘Frozen’ memorabilia we walked to Pont des Arts bridge where there are thousands upon thousands of padlocks which represent promises of love or friendship. Some people bought a padlock to put on the bridge to symbolise their friendships. After a few minutes of wandering along the bridge looking at different padlocks with promises of marriage and love a street artist stopped Mr MacLean for a caricature and everyone crowded round to watch as a rather goofy version of him was produced.
After, we went on the metro to a restaurant called Flam’s where we had a delicious take on pizza which originated in France, with a thin base and cream cheese topping. We watched France vs Nigeria in the World Cup and cheered on as France went on to score two goals and win the game. The bar was buzzing with people celebrating the win and as we walked back to the hotel there were people playing football in the street and cheering from car windows.
After the long day we had had, everyone was very relieved when we were able to go to bed!
Today we got up and went for breakfast a little later: there was toast, croissants, cereal, meat, cheese and a choice of drinks (plus a little bit of Nutella – yum!). We went back to our rooms and packed our bags ready for going to Paris, later in the day.
Before our evening departure we went to the Tate Modern, which is an old power station made into an art gallery, with all artists of different kinds. We were given three different art pieces to find in the galleries. The art pieces were: ‘Weeping Woman’ by Pablo Picasso, ‘Black on Maroon’ by Mark Rothko and finally ‘Hate and Power can be a Terrible Thing’ by Tracey Emin. The three different pieces stirred very different emotions from sorrow and hatred, to calmness and power. We started off lacking enthusiasm going into the Tate Modern but we all came out very inspired and passionate about many of the artworks in the galleries.
After that we then travelled to Oxford Circus by the Underground, where we went for lunch and shopping on Regent Street. We then went back to the hotel where we collected our bags and headed to St Pancras station to catch the Eurostar.
We are now on the Eurostar heading to our next destination, Paris. Our spirits are high and we are all very excited for what awaits us through the Channel Tunnel!
The London-Paris Bloggers
We got up really early to get breakfast at 7:15am. This was our first breakfast in the hotel. We had the option of cereals, fruits, toast and rolls. After breakfast we gathered outside and went on the underground to get to Euston Station. We took a train to Watford where we jumped on a bus to go to the Harry Potter studios!
When we arrived at the Harry Potter studios we were given some time to explore and look at the gift shop. Once we were done we had to queue up to get into the two huge sound stages. We watched two introductory films then walked through the real front doors of Hogwarts! We then walked round looking at the numerous sets, props and costumes. Once we moved through the first studio, we got the opportunity to have food and butterbeer! We then continued with the tour where we saw more of the set and a large scale Hogwarts model used for filming! We then had another chance to buy food or gifts!
After we explored the Harry Potter studios, we got the bus then the train back to Central London to grab some dinner. After dinner we all set off to The Globe Theatre to watch ‘Titus Andronicus’. With a running time of three hours, this dark tragedy by William Shakespeare was gory, bloody and, at times, amusing. Some people had to leave the theatre due to the long stand and the heat. The was never a dull moment as the actors moved through the crowd and kept us alert! Those who made it to the end were declared Shakespearean Titans and will feature on a hall of fame back at Ross High!
We ended the day with a walk across the Millennium Bridge giving us a chance to see London by night.
The London-Paris Bloggers
Today we woke up really early and had to meet at Waverley Station at 6am. Everyone was really tired but rather excited. When everyone was at the station and accounted for, we said goodbye to our families and quickly got into our travel groups. After meeting with our travel groups we quickly marched to the platform for our train to Glasgow. Everyone was carrying their heavy backpacks but crammed onto the very warm train. The train journey to Glasgow was quick and it look less than an hour. While on the train we got given our art packs so we could start scrap booking. When we got off the train in Glasgow it was a relatively quick turn around to catch our train to London. We jumped on the train and got comfortable in our seats as we were on the train for 5 or 6 hours!
When we arrived in London it was only 12 o’clock in the afternoon and we still had a long day ahead. After getting off the train we headed to the underground to get a tube to South Kensington, where our hotel was located. We checked in at the Meininger and put our bags in a room for storage as we had to depart quickly to go for our tour at the Houses of Parliament.
We left the hotel and got back on the underground to head out for some lunch. We got off near London Bridge so we could walk over and see the sights along the Thames. We then got to Borough Market where we had the chance to go and explore by ourselves and get something to eat, from the wide variety of food stalls offering amazing foods from all over the world.
We met back up in our travel groups and headed for Parliament where Fiona O’Donnell MP had arranged a tour for us to learn about the history of the buildings and British politics. The tour was really good but everyone was tired so after we finished at Parliament we went to Pizza Hut for some dinner. Everyone really enjoyed it.
Afterwards we walked through Leicester Square where everyone got to roam around and have a little look at some street performers, and some visited shops like M&M World. After this we headed back to the hotel and everyone was organised into their rooms and went to bed as we were all exhausted after our first day.
The London-Paris Bloggers
Ellie Bissett, 2W2, and Annie Bowman, 2S2, have taken Ross High over the 100,000,000 million mark for words read through Accelerated Reader! Congratulations to all our pupils on this fantastic achievement!
Thank you to all parents and staff who have promoted and encouraged personal reading this year. Pupils are evidently reading more regularly and we want to keep pushing this and aim high once again next session.
We have also beaten our target for books read, which now stands at 2027.
Our Accelerated Reader battle against Knox Academy continues with Ross High leading the way!
We are at almost 95 million words and 1927 books read – at this rate we will hit our targets before the new timetable in June!
Well done everyone and keep reading and completing AR quizzes!
S1 – 4 pupils are invited to let their imagination run wild in this year’s Tyne and Esk Young Writer of the Year competition.
Entrants must reside in East Lothian and are allowed to enter one piece of original writing. The work can be either prose or poetry. Prose should be no more than 1500 words with poetry being no longer than 40 lines. There is no charge for entering the competition.
Entrants must ensure that they include their name; age; class; title of their entry; name of school and their English teacher on the back of their piece of original writing. Please keep an electronic copy as you will need this should you win.
All entries should be handed to English teachers by Wednesday 11 June.
Best wishes to all our S4/5/6 pupils as the SQA exams begin. We hope you get the results you deserve.
Remember your English exam start times:
Int 1 – 9am
Int 2 – 1pm
Nat 5 – 1pm
Higher – 9am
Advanced Higher – 1pm
The English department, school librarian Mrs Lumsden and the staff of Ross High have worked hard this session to improve pupil engagement with personal reading . Last session just 40 million words had been read by pupils through Accelerated Reader. Already this session pupils have doubled that figure to over 86 million and we are continuing to win the” reading war” against Knox Academy. Our pupils have now read nearly 2000 books!
At the end of term, the library hosted a Celebration of Reading for almost 60 pupils who have successfully completed awards for ‘Reading for Gold’ and also those who have read over 1 million words in the Accelerated Reading programme.
Already this year 36 pupils have completed their ‘Reading for Gold’ Bronze award; 2 have completed the ‘Reading for Gold’ Silver award; and we now have 18 Reading Millionaires (including some double and triple millionaires) from Accelerated Reader.
Well done to all our pupils on becoming more avid readers. Let’s aim for the 100 million word mark by the summer break – less than 20 million words to go!