North Mainland Notes 27.03.09

Maths prizes for Brae pupils

Pupils at Brae High School have once again been successful in the UK Maths Challenge, this time at intermediate level. The UK Mathematics Trust (UKMT) is a registered charity whose aim is to advance the education of children and young people in mathematics.

The UKMT organises national mathematics competitions and other mathematical enrichment activities for UK pupils aged between 11 and 18. The trust was established in 1996 and last academic year over 600,000 pupils from 4,000 schools took part in the three individual challenges, the UK’s biggest national maths competitions. Brae High pupils achieved four silver and 10 bronze certificates with Jamie Murphy getting a best in school award. Congratulations to all who took part, an excellent achievement for the school.

Spring bulbs at Roe

The North Mainland Gardening Club’s annual Spring Bulb Show will take place on Sunday at the Muckle Roe hall from 3pm to 5pm. Teas and homebakes will be provided by the hall committee as part of their fund-raising efforts.

Entries show should be taken to the hall between 3pm and 5pm tomorrow. Each exhibit should have the name and address of the exhibitor in a sealed envelope, with the class entry on the outside. All entries are free.

Ollaberry hall meeting

The annual general meeting of the Ollaberry hall will take place in the hall on 15th April at 7pm.

The committee has a busy few years ahead of them with design and propective refurbishment of the hall and would welcome any new members who would be willing to get involved with the various tasks involved in running a community hall.

Hillswick hall events

Lots of events will take place in the Hillswick hall over the next few weeks, beginning with the monthly quiz tonight at 7.30pm. The questions have been set and teams should have no more than four people.

On Sunday night the Golden Kitchen takeaway service will be available from 4pm to 9pm. Telephone orders can be phoned in on (01806) 503265.

Easter teas and a car boot sale will be held on Sunday, 5th April from 3pm to 5pm. Anyone wishing to book a table for the car boot sale can do so on (01806) 503738.

Help for enterprises

Community groups wanting to regenerate their local area can look to one of their own for help, thanks to a new partnership.

Northmavine Community Development Company (NCDC), based at Collafirth, Northmavine, has been awarded a contract to provide information and advice to budding development trusts in the Northern Isles.

The Development Trust Association Scotland (DTAS) has given NCDC the job of promoting the idea of community enterprise across Shetland, and helping community enterprises learn from each other.

Development trusts are community owned organisations trying to regenerate their local area. They do this by generating income through trading, which also allows them to move away from dependence on grants. DTAS is the trade association for development trust in Scotland.

At present, only two organisations in Shetland are DTAS members: NCDC and Unst Partnership – but there are other groups in the isles that are operating as development trusts, or are setting up development trusts.

Under the new contract NCDC will provide a range of services: information and advice; training and networking events; and opportunities to learn from successful development trusts elsewhere in the UK .

DTAS director Ian Cooke said: “Community organisations such as development trusts can learn a great deal from each other, so they don’t need to reinvent the wheel.

“Our new link up with NCDC will allow local groups to network with others in Shetland, in Scotland and across the UK, to learn the lessons about what’s worked well elsewhere and to get advice and information from other trusts.”

NCDC chairwoman Margaret Roberts said: “We’ve found membership of DTA Scotland incredibly useful, in particular the opportunity to network with and learn from others across Scotland. We want to help other communities benefit from this fantastic resource.

“I’m delighted we’ve been awarded this contract. This not only recognises how far NCDC has come over the past few years, but also demonstrates the value that DTAS places on investing in the skills and experience of local communities and enabling them to learn from and help each other.”

Circus at Urafirth

The circus came to town at Urafirth on Red Nose Day to help raise money for Comic Relief.

The show was a colourful, happy culmination of the term’s topic work with the younger children. It coincided perfectly with Red Nose Day, allowing everyone in the school, staff and pupils, to dress up and clown around for the day.

The bairns made their own posters and tickets for the event and a handsome sum was raised for Comic Relief. With help from the cook, the pupils also made red nose buns which were then sold to parents and visitors. The fun and antics were only possible with a great deal of planning and practising by the nursery staff and visiting specialists.

Brae High Up-Helly-A’

Primary 3/4 at Brae High School were extremely busy when I visited last Wednesday and the classroom resembled a mini-galley shed as pupils prepared for the Brae High School Up-Helly-A’.

One corner of the classroom also resembled a scene from Ready, Steady, Cook as a huge amount of home bakes were being made by the class to sell to visitors on Up-Helly-A’ day.

The 17 pupils, who would form the Jarl’s Squad, were busy making all the accessories for their squad including silver necklaces, brooches, tiaras, shields, daggers, belts and helmets.

Matthew Johnson – Sigurd of Muckle Roe – was looking forward to his role as the Guizer Jarl and although the squad colours were a closely guarded secret, I can now reveal that handsome blue cloaks were dotted round the room.

Seamist, the wooden galley carefully crafted by parent Vivian Clark, sat ready with a fearsome head and full sail. A programme was being prepared, full of the songs chosen by the Jarl’s Squad, which included the traditional Up-Helly-A’ song and the Jarl’s Squad song, Ring of Fire by Johnny Cash.

The programme also included a saga about Sigurd of Muckle Roe as well as pictures of the Jarl’s Squad and the nine further squads comprising pupils from the remaining primary classes at Brae.

With such a vast amount of work carried out by all the pupils, it was hard to believe that the idea, which stemmed from the Viking project being undertaken by primary 3/4, had only been conceived three weeks ago. The enthusiasm of the bairns was clearly visible as they spoke about the various aspects involved in the preparation and it was heart-warming to see the class learning skills in such a fun way.

Last Friday all seats were taken in games hall as the whole school marched in and around the hall, in their various squads.

Sigurd of Muckle Roe and his squad led the procession accompanied by two fiddlers. The jarl welcomed everyone and his squad led the singing. Three cheers were raised and the class squads were introduced.

The Nursery squad: The bairns marched round the hall with the colourful Viking accessories they had made.

Primary 1: Bert and Betty the Bears Story – they all had teddy bear masks and a fantastic variety of outfits with each group acting out part of the amusing story.

Primary 2: Money Spiders – a very happy dance and song on the theme of money with costumes made by the pupils.

Primary 4/5: Abba – a group of girls, looking great in Abba outfits and wigs, danced to Waterloo.

Primary 4/5: Dragons – a dramatic presentation by a group of boys based on their studies of World War Two.

Primary 4/5: Jokers – a group performing a dance and telling jokes.

Primary 5/6: Family Fortunes – a sketch based on the tv programme with two teams with questions based on a Viking theme.

Primary 5/6: Bling Bling Blingers – this group made up a dance based on the Cadbury’s eyebrow advert with a commentary by two very well known sports presenters!

Primary 7: Grease Lightning – a lively dance routine using a large model car made by the pupils.

Visitors were then invited into the canteen for tea, coffee and home bakes made by primary 3/4 pupils. Donations received on the day amounted to £128.61 and the class were able to pay back £60 borrowed from the school for the ingredients for the home bakes, leaving a profit of £68.61 to go towards playground equipment. School entrepreneurship did not stop there, as programmes were also sold.

The school staff said they would like to thank the squads, who worked hard and performed so enthusiastically, and the parents and visitors who supported them.

The pupils had such fun preparing for the event, and were able to use and learn such a variety of skills in the process, that there are now plans to make it an annual event.

Maree Hay


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