Would you build your house near a volcano?

“Of course not!”, I hear you cry! “What an absurd idea!”

It seems like such a silly question!

However, the children in Osprey class have been looking at reasons for and against building a new town near a volcano.  We held a class debate, where half of the class argued the reasons for the proposal, and the other half argued the reasons against!


  • Ash can destroy farm crops
  • Buildings can be destroyed by lava flow
  • People can be swept away by pyroclastic flows or lahars (mudflows)
  • Ash can cause health problems for people and animals
  • Frequent earthquakes can damage property



  • Farming near a volcano can be really good, because the volcanic soil can produce very good crops
  • Volcanic regions can produce geothermal energy, which is clean and renewable
  • Scientists can predict when a volcano will erupt
  • Volcanoes are tourist attractions bringing money and jobs to the area
  • Dormant volcanoes may not erupt for hundreds of years
  • The isolated slopes of volcanoes are good habitats for rare plants and animals
  • Minerals and rocks made from volcanic lava are mined and used for building materials, bringing jobs to the area

IMG_0205The children played their role well, fighting their corner even if it didn’t reflect their true opinion.  However, when we took a class vote on how they really felt about building a town near a volcano, almost all of the class voted against the notion.

(And I’m inclined to agree!)


Curling – but not as we know it!

Last Friday, a small group of pupils from St. Philip’s were invited to try a new sport: curling, but with a difference!  It is called New Age Kurling, and instead of sliding stones on ice, the stones are rolled along any smooth, flat surface using a set of ball-bearings.

“New Age Kurling is a derivative of the original curling game on ice.  The main difference is that it can be played by able bodied and people with disabilities alike, and it can be played indoors on any surface such as sports halls, dance halls, church or community halls, office breakout areas, classrooms, school playgrounds, corridors and even in disused car parks.

Three children from Osprey attended and had a great experience. Take a look at them in action:

Corey’s electric presentation

As part of our science topic on electricity, Corey offered to bring in his electrical kit from home and give us a demonstration.  He was very knowledgeable; he was able to show the class how to create a circuit and explain how it worked.  Corey, and his able assistant, Calum, built two different games using the circuit boards. The children particularly enjoyed the lie-detector test, which created a high buzzing sound if you were lying, and a low buzz if you were being truthful.  Corey would ask his volunteers a question and they would have to answer. This caused much hilarity in class, especially when they caught Mrs Callow out telling a sneaky porky-pie about not liking ice-cream!

Take a look at our mini slide-show:

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D&T: Making a Roman Ballista

The children in Osprey class had a great day today.  Not only was it Christmas jumper Day, but they had fun creating a Roman ballista, a powerful catapult used by the Roman army.  Working in pairs, they exercised their skills of teamwork, measuring, sawing, glue-gunning, hand-drilling and following a set of instructions independently. The Y4s got to test theirs today and the Y5s will test theirs on Friday with Owl and Kestrel classes – the competition is on!

Have a look at them so far…


Roman Baths Trip!


Osprey had another opportunity to immerse themselves in Roman culture this week as they were transported back in time, roughly 2000 years, to Roman Bath. They had great fun exploring artifacts, creating mosaics and dressing as Romans.

The children were fascinated to learn about how the Romans used the Baths through an audio guide and very much enjoyed exploring the beautiful remains.