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Six boys from Years 10 and 11 represented Tiffin in the English Speaking Union Public Speaking competition at St Paul’s School. This was the first time for a number of years that Tiffin had participated in this competition and our success can be partly attributed to two preceding events. The first was the re-invigoration of Tiffin’s Monday lunchtime Debating Society by sixth formers, Angelo Umashangar and Ujjaval Dhingra, and their enthusiasm to enter several debating competitions of different styles and for different age groups. The second was the Tiffin House public speaking competition; another remarkable event which this year saw 90 boys deliver speeches on an unimaginable variety of topics from ‘Philosophy and Pooh’ to pet snakes which helped identify some of Tiffin’s most talented speakers.
The competition ran from 5pm to 9pm and saw Tiffin’s speakers take on the different roles of chair, presenter and questioner as they grappled with the awkward pre-determined topics. At the end of the evening, although Putney High School won the team event, Tiffin took home two of the three individual prizes: the three judges chose Freddie Maguire as the best Chair and Manuj Mishra as the best questioner. All six competitors spoke with tremendous maturity and represented Tiffin exceptionally well.
On Wednesday 18th January, 16 Year 9 pupils travelled to Surbiton High School to give their presentations regarding different aspects of British Human Rights. After two months of hard work and having travelled to Queen Mary’s University for an induction day in November, the pupils in their groups of four had five minutes to present their dissertation from their chosen topic, which was followed by five minutes of questions from the audience for all groups. The quality of work from the Tiffin groups, as well as the sixteen Surbiton High School girls was outstanding and their efforts were plain to see. All pupils were awarded with a certificate for their participation by the British Institute of Human Rights, who marked the groups’ work, and there were also four prizes on offer; one for the audience favourite, one for best dissertation methodology, one for best presentation on the night and one for best argument. Tiffin groups won two of these prizes, the best dissertation methodology and the best presentation on the night, but all involved deserved great praise for the standards of their work and the extensive efforts they put in between November and January, on a project that was entirely completed outside of lesson time. The best methodology on dissertations was awarded to Eyeol Abebaw-Mesfin, Arjan Madaher, Oscar Pearson and Sebastian Pereira, while the best presented research project went to Manik Aggarwal, Darshan Kumaresan, Joseph Manley and Mukund Pandey. It was great to see so many parents attending the presentation evening too; some very difficult questions were posed to the groups and this really added to the atmosphere of the evening.
On Monday 12th December 2016 Tiffin Dancers qualified to represent Kingston upon Thames for the second time at London Youth Games at the Copper Box on Wednesday 8th March 2017. Huge congratulations to all the Year 9 dancers who were involved.
On Thursday the 8th December an elite team of 4 of our finest Chemists from Year 9, 10 and 11 competed in a regional heat of the Royal Society of Chemistry’s – Top of the Bench competition at Reed’s School in Cobham and there was strong academic competition on the night. The competition itself consisted of a practical exam and written exam sat individually by all the boys. In the past we have always came second but for the first time this year we won this regional heat.
We are waiting to see if the boys will progress to the next round but what a fantastic result! Congratulations to Callum Houghton-Flory Y10, Ashwin Sajeev Y11 , Christian Cases and Priyansh Mahajan, both Y9.
Congratulations to the boys below who sat the British Physics Olympiad. This year over 1,680 students participated. Top 50 means in the entire country! So well done to Chris and also Navonil who is only in Year 11 and competing against boys 2 years senior to him.
Gold (Top 50)
Students who achieved a “Gold (Top 50)” award will be invited to participate in BPhO Round 2, the next round in the British Physics Olympiad competition, and BAAO Olympiad if they are interested in the Astronomy and Astrophysics Olympiad. These are set for Monday 30 January 2017 and Monday 23 January 2017 respectively.
This year’s exciting drama production, The Comedy of Errors, which is to take place in the Drama Studio (the Main Hall is out of action as it is serving as our temporary dining hall during the building of its replacement) will run from Monday, 6 February to Thursday 9 February at 7 pm with an additional matinée and evening performance on Saturday 4 February.
The play, one of William Shakespeare’s early plays, is his shortest and one of his most farcical comedies, with a major part of the humour coming from slapstick and mistaken identity, in addition to puns and word play. It tells the story of two sets of identical twins that were accidentally separated at birth, Antipholus of Syracuse and his servant, Dromio of Syracuse, arrive in Ephesus, which turns out to be the home of their twin brothers, Antipholus of Ephesus and his servant, Dromio of Ephesus. When the Syracusans encounter the friends and families of their twins, a series of wild mishaps based on mistaken identities lead to wrongful beatings, a near-seduction, the arrest of Antipholus of Ephesus, and false accusations of infidelity, theft, madness, and demonic possession.
The younger members of the choir had a busy week recording for a commercial and for the Blankety Blank Christmas Special – to be aired on Christmas Eve on ITV at 6.30pm. The boys were well looked after at ITV Studios and certainly enjoyed the whole experience, particularly the revolving stage.
On Tuesday 29th November, Tiffin went to Ibstock Place School for the 2nd annual German Debating Competition. Tiffin put forward teams of 2 contestants in each of the 3 year groups: Year 11, Year 12 and Year 13.
The tournament consists of 3 rounds of debate on three different motions all done entirely in the German language. The contestants did not know which side they would represent until they were in the debating chamber.
The competition this year was stronger than ever but the level of fluency and spontaneous argument from both our Year 12 and Year 13 teams was excellent. Sebastian Tyrrall and Joe Dumpleton had to argue a range of topics: that social media has too many negative effects; that German bands should be forced to sing in German. Sanchith Nadanakumar and Andrew Siu had to argue that the Olympic Games were a waste of money, and in favour of the use of high pressure water to release shale gas from reserves deep underground. The Tiffin Year 11 team was actually selected from Year 10, but both Abiram Uthyakumar and Euan O’Connor proved more than able. They argued amongst other things that young people should have a part-time job, but that homework should be banned! Euan and Abiram (pictured below) won all three debates, and secured top spot by a single point over the hosts, and that is a very special achievement for two boys competing in a higher age group. They are all to be congratulated for their immense preparation and fluent logical arguments. IN GERMAN!!!!
With carols led by our Boys’ Choir, and an audience of Tiffin friends and supporters, this was a highlight of the Tiffin year and a very special occasion. The Service was recorded last night and will be broadcast on Classic FM at 8 pm on Wednesday 21 December.
Taking part in readings were Old Tiffinians, Gethin Anthony, the actor of Game of Thrones fame, Arun Harinath, top-order batsman with Surrey, together with Griff Rhys Jones, Anne Robinson and Jenny Seagrove.