High achieving Year 10 students from Salendine Nook High School joined Huddersfield New College for a morning of challenging STEM related activities, designed to stretch and challenge the students in preparation for their upcoming GCSEs.

Twenty students, split into two teams, took part in three specially planned challenges within the College’s outstanding Mathematics, Science and Computing departments. The sessions, which explored A Level content, had a competitive element to them, and teachers judged the winning team at the end of the three sessions.

In Maths, students learned Floyd’s algorithm, a topic from A Level Further Maths, and applied this to solve the ‘Google Maps’ problem: given a map, what is the shortest route between two towns?, with the aim to solve as many map problems as possible in a race against time. The Physics session entailed learning about moments and centre of gravity, using these theories to work out the mass of an object using known weights. The final challenge saw students explore the A Level content of the Computer Science course, which involved 8 mini-challenges that grew increasingly more difficult, all written in the popular programming language, Python.

The winning team were announced at the end of a special lunch. Mark Webber, Head of Mathematics, said “It was a pleasure to welcome these talented Year 10s to HNC to explore the A Level content of subjects they currently study at GCSE. These challenging sessions not only help to improve students’ skill and confidence moving into their GSCE year, it also helps students to gain a flavour for these subjects at A Level which will hopefully inspire them to carry these subjects forward post 16. I very much hope to welcome these students into our class of 2020!”