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S3 Project Based Learning – Legacies of Slavery

S3 Project Based Learning – Legacies of Slavery

S3 pupils visited the Legacies of Slavery exhibition at Aberdeen University library, as part of their ongoing PBL (Project Based Learning) on the theme of racism. The exhibition provided an interesting insight into the local connections Aberdeen has with slavery, allowing students to make real-world connections between their learning and their local area. 


Pupils took part in a workshop, exploring the importance of a name and the impact on personal identity- something that was removed for slaves. They also looked into some of the names of streets and places in the local area with links to the slave trade (Jamaica Street, Sugarhouse Lane, Imperial Place). Also discussed was the fact that slave names have been erased from history, all record of their original identity has been lost/removed. However, the names of the slave traders remain famous. 


The exhibition contained a variety of interesting materials including the stories of the slaves who lived and worked here. The economic impact of slavery was also explained- some famous Aberdeen landmarks were built with proceeds of the slave trade.  Shockingly, the compensation paid to slave owners was such a large amount that the debt was only paid off in full in 2015- the abolition of slavery occurred in 1833. 


Many thanks to all involved at the University of Aberdeen for the production of such an interesting and important exhibition- our visit was an eye-opening one and provided our learners with an invaluable learning experience.

S1 Pupils learn lifesaving skills

S1 Pupils learn lifesaving skills

Paramedics from Scottish Ambulance Service came into Alford Academy today to teach pupils how to deal with a casualty who has suffered cardiac arrest.  The input was part of a series of scenarios S1 pupils have been going through with Guidance teachers called – ‘keeping yourself safe’.

The pupils learned how to –

  • check for danger to help keep themselves, the casualty, and bystanders safe.
  • check for a response from the casualty by shouting and gently shaking them.
  • shout for help & how to call 999 and what information is required.
  • check the casualty’s airways by looking into their mouths and opening their airway.
  • check for breathing by watching if their chest moves up and down & putting an ear above their lips and nose to hear if they are breathing.
  • check their circulation by looking at the colour of their skin.
  • perform chest compressions & use the defibrillator to help a casualty who has suffered cardiac arrest.

Pupils were able to put their learning into practice by using the manikins to perform this sequence.

Alford Academy would like to thank Scottish Ambulance Service for providing such fantastic, worthwhile and potentially lifesaving training to our S1 pupils.

Class Magazine

Class Magazine

S2 Study and Organisation have been working on a project to create a digital magazine.

We wanted young people to read more so we decided to make a digital magazine because everyone uses their phones nowadays. We wrote lots of different articles as people are interested in lots of different topics. 

During this project we had to work as a team and communicate with each other. We had to use our literacy, research and IT skills, and work towards a deadline. You can read our magazine by scanning the QR code advertised around the school or clicking the link below. 

We enjoyed working on this magazine project and we hope you enjoy reading it.

S&O Magazine



S3 Admin & IT help Alford Golf Club with digital technology

S3 Admin & IT help Alford Golf Club with digital technology

The S3 Admin & IT class visited Alford Golf Club on 16th May with their teacher Mrs Forsyth and the school’s DYW Employer School Coordinator, Romana Richards to present their admin and business project.

Iain Affleck (club manager), Harry Yorston (club captain) and Stuart Storrie (Club Council / School Liaison) represented the golf club and each of the pupils took it in turns to present their findings and suggestions on how the club could move forward in terms of technology. The pupils had researched the best options for the club’s filing system (saving files onto the cloud instead of locally), a facility for scanning images into usable documents, improving their website, social media presence to appeal to members of all ages, and a human resources app for staff. The presentation was very well received by the club and made the pupils and teachers feel very welcome.

Head Teacher Angela Wotherspoon said “The project was a valuable experience for our pupils as they were able to transfer the knowledge and skills that they have, to help solve a real-life problem.

Thank you to Alford Golf Club for giving our pupils the opportunity to work alongside them and for being so accommodating and open to their ideas, it is much appreciated”.

Neptune Energy ignites project with Alford Academy pupils

Neptune Energy ignites project with Alford Academy pupils

Calvin of Neptune Energy is standing to the left hand side of a large screen. A group of pupils are sitting listening to, and watching, his presentation.

S3 Chemistry pupils from Alford Academy are set to tackle an exciting project with Neptune Energy following a series of presentations from staff members during Scottish Careers Week (7-11 November 2022).

Pupils were visited by Neptune Energy’s geologist Calvin Roberts, metallurgist Bob Conder and communications advisor Jodie Kilminster. Each staff member outlined their career path and current job role, providing pupils with an insight into their backgrounds and day-to-day working life.

Calvin went on to talk about the geology of batteries, the use of lithium and associated environmental impacts. Bob’s presentation covered metals, alloys, corrosion and prevention, outlining why metals are useful for transport and how corrosion can be slowed or prevented. Jodie explained to the pupils how she helps Neptune Energy communicate with its internal and external audiences by managing the company’s website, social media channels and interactions with the media.

Having received some additional design and messaging tips from Jodie, pupils have been tasked with producing a poster to showcase the lessons learned from the presentations they heard during class. The finished results will be sent to Neptune Energy for feedback and review, with the best examples going on display at the company’s offices in Aberdeen.

“Having the opportunity to visit schools and share our knowledge is something we really value and we hope the students benefit from our support for their future careers.”JODIE KILMINSTER, COMMUNICATIONS ADVISOR · NEPTUNE ENERGY

A group of pupils listening to a presentation from Jodie from Neptune Energy, who is standing at the front of the class.

Neptune Energy’s Communications Advisor, Jodie Kilminster, said: “We’re extremely passionate about supporting young people in our local community with mentorship, guidance, and advice. Having the opportunity to visit schools and share our knowledge is something we really value and we hope the students benefit from our support for their future careers.”

Stuart Cookson, Depute Head Teacher, Alford Academy was delighted to welcome the Neptune Energy team members to the school.

“We are so grateful to Neptune Energy for allowing Bob, Calvin and Jodie to come into Alford Academy to provide such fantastic lesson inputs to S3 chemistry pupils,” he said. “The sessions enabled pupils to understand how their learning at Alford Academy is transferable to future careers and the world of work.

“Feedback from the pupils has been really positive. They are looking forward to designing their posters to showcase what they learnt from Neptune Energy. Alford Academy is excited about furthering our relationship with Neptune Energy to continue to inspire and engage our pupils, who are the future workforce.”

Developing the Young Workforce director, Margo Milne, said: “This is an excellent example of contextualising classroom learning with the world of work – and exactly the sort of activity that we wish to celebrate during Scottish Careers Week.

“We are incredibly grateful to Neptune Energy for providing the pupils with such a meaningful experience. The follow-on activity is particularly important in terms of cementing the pupils’ understanding and I’m sure the poster challenge will produce some fantastic results.”

A group of pupils sitting in front of a large screen with a presentation. Bob from Neptune Energy is standing to the left hand side of the screen and pointing at it.

Scottish Careers Week runs from 7-11 November 2022. The initiative is led by Skills Development Scotland with the support of partners and employers, and focuses on all things skills, jobs and careers. Further information about Scottish Careers Week is available here.

S1 – Learning about Ukraine

S1 – Learning about Ukraine

S1 Social Studies have been learning about the conflict in Ukraine and processing their thoughts. They’ve made posters to express their feelings on the conflict or try to explain what is happening. Here is some of their work from this week.

S1 McDonald’s Challenge

S1 McDonald’s Challenge

S1 Business & Admin have been learning about the internet.  They have been learning about copyright, branding and competition and staying safe online.  At the end they had to create a presentation about McDonald’s.  They looked at the history of McDonald’s, Branding and Competitors as well as their Social Media Presence.  They were asked to use the knowledge from the unit to give McDonald’s advice on how they could improve their business.

Well done S1!

Kindness Pandemic

Kindness Pandemic

The S1 study and organisation class, with Mrs Anderson, have completed a kindness project based learning task to try and create a pandemic of kindness at Alford Academy as part of kindness week.   We worked in groups to think of ideas to do with kindness.  We also wanted to develop our organising skills and confidence by completing this project.

Our class had a discussion about kindness and what we could do to spread kindness around the school.  We had lots of ideas but we picked the best ones and also the ones we could do within the covid regulations.  We decided we were going to send staff a positive sticky note and leave it in their pigeon holes. We also left positive sticky notes on random lockers for the pupils. We designed signs to remind people to hold the doors open for each other and also researched and shared kindness tips and quotes in the school bulletin for 2 weeks.

The skills we learned during our kindness pandemic project were as follows:

We used teamwork when we wrote kindness tips for the bulletin. We used our numeracy skills when we counted all of the lockers and pigeon holes. We had to be confident when we asked the headteacher if we could put up our hand signs on the doors. We used our computer skills when using google docs when writing the blog, researching ideas and for making the questionnaire. We all worked creatively when we designed and drew our hand signs. Finally, we communicated with each other throughout the project to complete the work quickly and effectively.

Our questionnaire feedback included some really positive and heart-warming responses.  Some examples were that the positive notes made people feel  happy, energised, pleased, worthy, chuffed, excited, seen, and part of the team.   Some people thought the tips in the bulletin were very helpful as a daily reminder to stay positive, have courage and be kind.  One response said this was a nice idea by nice people and another thanked us for organising the project.  Reading all the feedback has made us overjoyed and proud of our project.

Remember and always be kind!

S1 Study and Organisation.



S2s create a maths-bonfire night display

S2s create a maths-bonfire night display

S2 pupils in maths have been working on 2D shapes, and this week have been constructing Triangles and polygons using rulers, protractors and compasses.  Some of the classes put their new-found skills to good use today, creating a bonfire and fireworks display with their constructed triangles.  Well done S2 – They look Fantastic!!

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