Author Archive

the North of Scotland Schools Debating Competition

Written by Charleston Academy on . Posted in Achievements

Whilst ghosts and ghouls haunted the hall at the S1 and S2 Halloween disco, Thursday night also saw twelve pupils from six Highland schools come together for the third and final round of the North of Scotland Schools Debating Competition.

Morvern Carmichael and Samantha Cochrane opened for Charleston Academy, and the opposition, arguing against the motion ‘This house believes our right to a private life is under serious threat’. They were supported in this stance by Forres Academy and Glen Urquhart High School. Portree High School, Fortrose High School, and Nairn Academy combined to form the proposition.

Thorough preparation, and strong performances at the podium, ultimately led to another well deserved victory for Morvern and Samantha. They both received outstanding feedback from the presiding judge, and Samantha was declared speaker of the night.

The North of Scotland Schools Debating Competition operates on a league based system — across three rounds — with points awarded to the top teams in each debate. Morvern and Samantha excelled throughout events, performing consistently well; they were second in the opening debate, and won the following two. They have therefore qualified for the final which will be held at Albyn School in Aberdeen on November 24th. They will oppose the motion ‘This house deplores the tourism of today.’

A fantastic achievement, well done!

Dr G Campbell

English teacher

Highland Heroes

Written by Charleston Academy on . Posted in Achievements

Our head girl and head boy,  Grace Bird and Jacob Hodgson, attended the awards for Highland Heroes at the Kingsmills last night and although they didn’t win the award they did well being finalists and represented the school well on the evening.

Mrs L Cameron

Principal Teacher of geography

Highland Council review of Music Tuition

Written by Charleston Academy on . Posted in Achievements

The highland council instrumental service is a valued resource and extension of the Music department. Without the instructors support and input extra curriculum activities like the Concert, lunch time activities would fail to run. The instructors work closely with music staff to enrich the learning of individual pupils enrolled in these specialised instruments. Currently highland is looking at restructuring the instrumental service. Please show your support by completing the following survey if you have a child in S1 by Friday 17th November.

Pupil testaments

Tuesday night was an incredible experience as it was my first time performing with a group and playing the violin in public. I performed in the string group and I think the performance went really well. Throughout the whole night I think everyone had great fun watching all the acts.

Jessica Gordon 1 C

I started going to Charleston just after the summer break. Two weeks into my violin lessons with my new music teacher and he had already asked if I wanted to join the string group. That day I joined and since then I have played in the group.

Playing in the string group has opened so may doors for me. Our string group performed in a concert a few days ago. This helped to build my confidence on a stage and I think that is really valuable. If it wasn’t for music tuition I wouldn’t have been able to do any of this.

I have lots of brothers and sisters and it would be too expensive for my parents to pay for all of us to have private music lessons, as private lessons can be incredibly expensive. Music tuition in school makes it affordable to learn music and it allows anyone in school with a talent or love for music to be able to learn. It’s great! My sister, who played saxophone, completed her Grade 8 by the time she left school and that is my aim as well.

I also think that it is important to be able to play well in a group. You need to be able to work together to stay in the right timing. It also helps team building and in life it is important for you to be able to work in a group.

Learning an instrument also helps to build patience. Not everything is easy and you need patience to help you to not be too hard on yourself. You’re not always going to be able to do everything straightaway but if you have patience then you will eventually get there.

Finally, last week my teacher taught me 3rd position, something that I have wanted to learn for a while. It is not easy but with more practice and music lessons, I will learn new techniques and get better converting between 1st and 3rd position.

Overall I think the music lessons are really important and that playing in these groups can help build key values in life. I think music tuition is so important not just to help build my music skills but also to help build other skills that are crucial in life.

Abigail Morris 1D

Playing in the string group really helps me because it means I can’t go back and fix mistakes, I have to carry one to the end. I really enjoy playing with other people because I can see their style of playing. That’s one of the joys of the violin; you can play with other people as part of a group. The concert was a great experience and I can’t wait to do more.

Isobel Garvie

Expressive Arts Performance Showcase Tuesday 7th November

Written by Charleston Academy on . Posted in Achievements

Earlier this week approximately 40 music students from S1-6 entertained parents, family members, teachers and classmates with a variety of musical performances. The audience received a glass of sparkling fruit juice on arrival and discovered the assembly hall was staged to resemble a music lounge creating a relaxed atmosphere.

Included in the ticket price were nibbles which the audience could help themselves to during the evening as well as tea, coffee and tray bakes which were served by prefects and the Geography department during the interval.

After a quick introduction from the Acting PT of Music, Mr Nairn, the first performance was provided by our Piping group led by piping instructor Mrs McBain. This was a fantastic demonstration of the hard work that is put in by both staff and pupils and was an early indication of the array of talent the audience were about to hear.

The next two musical items were public firsts from our Higher students Rehana Karim and Jamie Buchan, who delivered a calm and technical performance on their piano and guitar instruments.

The evening continued with our string group led by string instructor Mr Hay. The group performed three pieces one of which (Harry Potter Theme) was a crowd pleaser with our younger audience. This was followed on with a strong clarinet solo by S4 student Anna. The first half of the evening was then rounded off with a set of Scottish pieces performed by Lewis MacRae on solo bagpipes.

The second half of the evening was introduced by the Woodwind group led by woodwind instructor Mrs Aalders. The group performed Dixieland blues and an arrangement of Disney’s Beauty and the Beast, both to a very high standard and were greatly received by all.

As the group left, two flautists (Beth Crookes and Grace Cranidge) remained on stage to perform a duet called Somewhere Out There. Our next musical acts were a piano duet Kern Robertson and Charlotte Stewart. Kern had already been on stage that night performing with the String group and had rushed back from an ABRSM theory exam to attend the concert. True dedication.

Our next two soloists were from the Higher and Advanced Higher class. Cal Roche performed Headlands on his fiddle and S6 pupil Nathan Bell performed Eat My Ferrari on the bass guitar. Nathan went on to stun the audience further with an improvisation.

Our final act was the much anticipated Percussion Group led by percussion instructor Mr Galbraith. This year they performed the theme tune from Super Mario brothers.

A big thank you to our S5 Advanced Higher pupil Patrick Morris who provided rhythm support on the drum kit for three of the instrumental groups. Our lighting and sound support were provided by our S3 BGE Music Technology pupils who did an amazing job creating the atmosphere. Special thanks should also be given to Mr Fairfield who accompanied and rehearsed the instrumental groups and soloists.

The Music Department

DYW – “Inspiring our Future”

Written by Charleston Academy on . Posted in Achievements

Leaving school at Christmas? Left & still not sure what your future looks like? Confused about what subjects you need to pick for your career path? Come along to Culloden Academy on the 16th November, speak to local employers directly & find out about the wealth of opportunities on your door step!

This event is open to all.