Thursday, 20 April 2017

Plymouth Challenge 9 - 2017

Plymouth Challenge 9 - 2017

We are pleased to announce that the 2017 Plymouth Challenge 9 will take place during the week beginning 19th June 2017.*

Schools are invited to enter their most able Yr 9 students into a competition designed to challenge and reward students who approach the questions in a logical and determined manner. (Very able Yr 8 students show also be considered for entry).   Questions are designed to reward logical thinking and accuracy and are designed to punish guessing or "hunches".

The test is designed to be accessible for any student in any Yr 9 top set in any school.

There are two ways of ordering papers


Schools in Plymouth are invited to enter free of charge. Please email with the number of students you wish to enter. You will, obviously, have to do your own photocopying of the tests and pay for postage back to us.


Schools outside of Plymouth are charged at £15 per 30 entries. Please email with your details. We will need the number of papers you require (if you have 32 in your top set just let us know and we'll chuck in a few extra papers), your name and your schools name. Our finance office will then contact your finance office. Please contact us if your finance office requires a different system to be used.

Papers must be ordered by May 24th in order for you to receive them in time. You will receive them 2 weeks ahead of time.

If you wish to know more please take use the free sample paper - Click me.

Video solutions to the sample paper are here - Click me

Last year's paper is here - Click me

The answers are not available via a link (in case you want to use it as a type of mock) but we will send you a copy of the answers if you email us (

What do we get when we enter? 

• Each school will be posted the number of entries they have requested

• Students who finish in the top 3% will receive a gold certificate.

•  Students who finish in the top 15% will receive a silver certificate.

• Students who finish in the top 35% will receive a bronze certificate.

• Each school will receive a “Best in School” certificate.

• Someone, in Plymouth, will receive a “Best in Plymouth” certificate.

• Someone, in the country, will receive a “Plymouth Challenge Winner” certificate.

* Schools are welcome to sit the exam at any time during this week. Please ensure question papers are collected and not redistributed to the students until the following week. If you cannot sit the exam at any time during this week please let us know and we will negotiate another time with you.

Thursday, 29 December 2016

How do we approach unanswered questions in Science and maths?

Every now and then the media reports a scientific breakthrough.  The announcement, in 2012, of the existence of the Higgs Boson being a memorable example of this.  During this year the CERN Large Hadron Collider completed an experiment that "proved" the existence of the Higgs Boson which, apparently, is absolutely key to understanding physics.

Well, TED to the rescue.  Take a is brilliantly explained.

Friday, 21 October 2016

Progress 8 Resources - PLE Day - Oct 2016

Thank you for attending our session on Progress 8 today. We thoroughly enjoyed presenting to you and hope you found it of some interest.

As promised, please find below a link to each of the resources. Please remember that we are not the authors of any of these resources and whilst we think the information is correct there may be errors we have not spotted.

Additionally, we have tried to credit authorship of each resource. If you are the author of one of these resources please contact me ( and I will credit you or remove the resource if you wish.

I hope you find the resources helpful and informative.

The resources are....

1. DFe School Accountability powerpoint - Click me

2.  Progress 8 powerpoint.  What does it mean for schools?  How will it affect schools - Click me

3.  Progress 8 and Attainment 8 exercise - Click me
     (This resource was originally developed by Miss M Dornan of Woolwich Polytechnic School)

4.  DFe Progress 8 and Attainment 8 measures - Click me

I hope you find some of the resources helpful.

Please contact Sarah ( or myself, Richard, ( if you have any questions or if we can help you in any way.

Have a great half term.

Sunday, 16 October 2016

Lessons in leadership

Something a bit different....

Leaders are everywhere.  People naturally think of leaders as only being at the pinnacle of the company or school but this would be a mistake.  Everybody in an organisation should strive to be a leader within the role they have. 

Lee Cockerell has 40 years of leadership experience with a wide range of companies. 

His career peaked as the Executive Vice President of Operations for the Walt Disney World® Resort and for ten years he led a team of 40 000.  He developed the Disney Great Leader Strategies for 7 000 leaders.

He is still active in leadership training and delivers a fascinating podcast each week - Leadership podcast.  Take a look.

Tuesday, 11 October 2016

6th Form Maths.....

Take a look at a great video compiled by one of our fabulous sixth formers...

Tuesday, 20 September 2016

Challenge puzzle!

A cracking puzzle.

(Thanks to "Nrich" for the puzzle and take a look here for more -  Click me for nrich )

Remember that there are 50 Vivos available for the first correct answer given or sent to Mr Whitehouse.

Friday, 16 September 2016

Open evening winner......

Thank you for coming to our open evening on Thursday night, it was great to meet so many new faces.

The winner of our lowest unique positive integer competition, who will be sent a brand new scientific calculator, is Sonny from Shakespeare Primary who gave the answer of ..................1.    Sometimes the most obvious answer is the right one!

A calculator will be put in the post on Monday - well done Sonny!

Other numbers that were submitted

0 - not a winner because 0 is not positive....sorry :(
2 - entered twice
3 - entered three times
4 - entered four times
6 - entered three times
7 - entered three times
10 - entered twice
17 - entered twice
32 - entered twice