Educate Magazine - 2021-05-01


Students embracing culture

Secondary news

Whilst January’s national lockdown inevitably brought its share of challenges, students at King David High School embraced the opportunity to meet each week to discuss things beyond the confines of the curriculum. Initially established by Mrs Wright, the school’s deputy head, ‘Culture Club’ is open primarily to students in Year 11 and Year 12 and it has touched on a variety of topics from the political philosophy of Hannah Arendt to the protest songs of Kendrick Lamar. Mrs Wright said: “Culture Club’s aim has always been designed to build the students’ cultural capital, but it has become so much more over time. “We have discussed and debated such a wide variety of topics from the Black Lives Matter campaign to gender identity that Culture Club has evolved into a forum for debate and free thinking. We are all very proud of that” The focus of each online session is derived from the previous week’s conversation giving students the opportunity to drive the agenda and debate a wide range of issues related to art, music, cinema and literature. Student contributions have been consistently excellent and staff have been delighted with the enthusiasm and maturity on display each week. Mr Way-Rider, a member of the staff responsible for chairing the student discussions, said: “We have begun to develop a real sense of community and it is quickly becoming a highlight of the week, whether it is analysing the poetry of the beat generation, or exploring German expressionism the students have taken everything in their stride and it is really gratifying to hear their views and to see them develop their wider cultural literacy.” The experience of online learning appears to have made students more confident to engage with these types of opportunities and the long term vision is that over time Culture Club will eventually be handed over to sixth form students, giving staff the chance to set up new groups looking at the classics and international affairs. Ruby, a Year 11 student said: “I love attending culture club, not only to expand my knowledge, but it has also built my confidence so that I feel increasingly able to participate in discussions.”




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