At KES we are dedicated to raising the achievement and engagement of our students in STEM subjects (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) and Careers. On offer is a varied and vibrant enrichment programme to allow all students the opportunity to explore STEM subjects in imaginative and inventive ways.
The STEM extra-curricular clubs offer opportunities to develop practical and teamwork skills. Highlights include the ‘Is there Witchcraft and Wizardry in the real world?’ programme, coding, and rocket launching. They also allow students a rare opportunity to explore their own interests and choose their own projects. On offer in the new academic year are, among others, robotics, engineering projects, rocket club, coding club and a ‘Mission to Mars’ project. Members of the STEM clubs also have the chance to meet and work with experts from industry.
The Technology department are celebrating success in this year's CSES Schools' Engineering and Technology Competition. A Year 11 student was awarded the CSES Design Execution Award for her early years rocking elephant and three of our students in Years 11 and 13 were awarded CSES STEM Club Awards, sponsored by Essex Community Foundation.
Another highlight was the ‘MathemARTical’ workshop collaboration between Mathematics and Art where students constructed giant sculptures. There are many exciting competitions and collaborations scheduled for next year, ranging from rocketry to designing projects for Colchester Zoo. Keep an eye on the STEM section of KES news for details.
Trips and visits are used to good effect to enhance the STEM programme. Students have visited the large hadron collider at CERN , the Big Bang Science Fair and Chessington World of Adventures. Year 9 girls were inspired by a trip to ProCat, Basildon to celebrate International Women in Engineering Day by taking part in a series of interactive workshops. Similar events are planned for the next academic year and are likely to include trips to Disneyland, Kidzania and Thorpe Park. We are excited at the prospect of visits from the Royal Institution to perform their much acclaimed Science Show and also the ‘Medical Mavericks’ who will spend a day inspiring students by bringing real medical kit into the classroom. The Year 9 Careers Fair in January should also provide much inspiration for students as they will be able to speak to industry experts and gain insight into a range of careers.
Peer support is important to us at KES and many of our sixth formers volunteer their time to support younger students in their understanding of STEM subjects. Former KES students who have successfully secured places studying STEM subjects at University also visit us to inspire and support the next generation. The next academic year will see the launch of the STEM ambassador programme in which students will be recognised for their achievements and effort in STEM events.
We currently offer extra curricular clubs in Science (Big Bang Club), Mathematics, Technology and Computer Science. Students have the opportunity to take part in practical activities and challenges, working with staff and visitors from industry and higher education. Activities planned for this year include Engineering masterclasses at ProCat, Colchester Zoo competition, rocketry to name but a few. Our STEM programme is supported by a range of trips and visits such as CERN and Eurodisney.