G28 GCSE Poetry Anthology

G28 started their GCSE English Literature course today by annotating the poem Hawk Roosting by Ted Hughes. They will be exploring 5 of the nature poems from their poetry anthology within the context of their current expedition ‘How does water shape our world?’

They’ve made a great start and have attached some examples of their beautiful work below. Whilst working on this, I showed the students a poetry anthology revision guide that is useful. This is NOT a necessity and certainly is not needed now but some students were keen to get a copy and asked that I share the link via the website. So you can buy it on Amazon here but just to reiterate, this is not compulsory or a necessity it would simply support students’ revision of the poems.

If you are looking to support your child further with this, I also suggested the pens with 4 colours and a highlighter with 3-4 colours too (to support with annotations.) Again, we do have different coloured pens and highlighters in school so this is not a necessity but something that would be useful if you wanted to purchase for your child.


G29 Celebration of Learning

On Wednesday 17th July at 4.30pm, G29 students will be hosting and catering an evening to celebrate their learning through their expedition ‘Is Migration Worth the Risk?’ This celebration of learning will be held at XP Gateshead School.

It will be an opportunity to celebrate the diverse nature of our area by ‘breaking bread’ together with our experts from the Comfrey Project and other migrants in our community. Students will share their learning from the expedition including poetry recital and a screening of a film made by G28 students.

As this event is catered with afternoon tea-style food and cakes from around the world, it is important we are aware of any dietary requirements and also the numbers that will be attending.

Please use this link to let us know who will be attending and if there are any dietary requirements we need to be aware of. There is a limit of 2 people per student.

To support this, we are in need of some plates of different sizes that we can use to construct our afternoon tea stands. If you are have some at home or are able to pick some up from a charity shop that you would be willing to donate, we would much appreciate it!

Afternoon Tea | The Barnstaple Hotel | North Devon


G29 Fieldwork Tuesday 4th June

On Monday 4 June  G29 students will undertake a day of Fieldwork at the Gateshead Energy Centre to look at their methods of energy and heat  production and Gateshead Councils Carbon Zero approach. 

  • Students need to bring their regular kit for the day in a bag as there are exhibits in the site where students can take photographs and make notes using iPads for example.
  • Class 1 are visiting in the morning and will finish school  at their normal time. We are leaving school at 8.30 so class 1 students need to be in school for 8.25am to register. 
  • Class 2 are expected to to return to school at 3.30pm (please check the website for updates)
  • The visit will be outdoors, so students need layers to keep warm. Depending upon the weather we may need a waterproof outdoor coat. Sun cream and sun hats will be needed too. 

Students will be walking so comfortable shoes will be needed.

Beautiful work from Adam

Adam’s football team Wrekenton Nou Camp won their recent tournament which was played over two days, this on top of winning their league too. Adam was delighted to receive his trophy from professional footballer Wes Morgan.


Dear Families

Last week there was a lot of hard work from staff and students alike at XP Gateshead. Character growth alongside academic progress and beautiful work is at the core of our ‘Three Dimensional’ approach for students, staff and leadership, including governance. Our Crew Days last week and the DofE work undertaken by G28 students is key in terms of character development and Crew.

The Importance of Crew at XP Trust

Our design principles at XP Trust are summarised in one sentence:

We build our community through activism, leadership and equity, sharing our stories as we go.

Crew is integral to our school’s approach and has been designed with the above in mind as is articulated in our core practices document:

“The cultural heart of XP is expressed through the concept of Crew. This concept is pervasive and runs through everything we do from dedicated Crew sessions, through our curriculum, to the way we enable student and staff voice. Crew is our culture and promotes and sustains the building of community. Crew empowers our students and staff to be activists; to develop their leadership skills; and to be champions of equity. The measure of success in our Trust is weighed through service and kindness as well as the academic success of our children. Crew allows everyone associated with our Trust to become part of something bigger than themselves and fosters a sense of community and belonging, reflected in the stories we share with each other every day.”

G30 Crew Day – Walk for Water

G30 Crews carried out a day of fundraising at Gateshead International Stadium linked to their studies from the last learning expedition “Staying Alive”. This was part of the final case study in the expedition – ‘Water, water everywhere’. Working together in Crews, our students were challenged to carry 5 litre bottles of water around as many laps of the 400m track as they could. Money raised will be put towards twinning our school toilets with a set that have been installed in an area of need, transforming a community. 

The challenge gave students an insight into the challenges that people in the world face just to get clean water for washing, drinking and cooking every day and raised awareness of how much we have in our country that we take for granted as a basic human right.

We are really proud of our students who walked a total distance of 252.8km carrying 5 litres of water. We will post an update later this week with the total amount raised. All students worked really hard, and we had a great community meeting at the end of the day where students made appreciations for the encouragement shown to each other. Jacob in Crew Earhart was a particular standout, both in terms of his own physical effort, but also in the support that he showed to students from all crews. Great work G30!

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Of course the fundraising is in itself important, and we hope that with the funds raised we will be able to twin more of our school toilets with more facilities installed in Sub-Saharan Africa. Events like this in Crew day are also integral to the development of character and teaching your children that they are important, that they can do important work and make their community and the wider world a better place.

G29 Crew Day 

As our Year 8 students develop and mature, we challenge them to develop their leadership skills in Crews and individually. Students were challenged with several tasks across the day. 

Firstly, a Lego SPIKE robotics innovation unit challenged students to design and code a robot that could mobilise without wheels, using their iPads to code the robot and making adjustments to the design based upon testing. The kits will stay in school as part of a wider partnership with LEGO funded through SAGE. Special thanks to our robotics club members and Dr Bunce who runs the club as they contributed additional kit, training and carried out a trial run of the challenge. We will make further use of the kits to support STEAM learning in the terms and years to come.

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Our award winners for the challenge – for fastest (and most aesthetically pleasing) robots.

Crews also spent time planning how they could make an artefact in final half-term which will raise awareness of their chosen Crew charities. This is an important part of their work ahead of Crew fundraising which will take place in Year 9 and forms part of their first-week back in August.

Special thanks go to G29 for their stewardship work in our outdoor areas. As you know, it has been agreed in principle that our current site is to be our permanent site and work is underway to look at building requirements. We are a long way off getting our final school building and site but that does not mean we can not improve our environment. So G29, along with Mr Walters and our gardening club, have done a huge amount of work already. Please keep an eye out for Mr Walters and his shout outs for donations of gardening equipment on our Parents of XPG Facebook group.

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G28 Duke of Edinburgh Practice Expedition

All of our students complete a bronze DofE award in Year 9 and this, like our first week at Ullswater, is a compulsory part of our curriculum at XPG. The DofE programme aims to “develop the skills and attitudes young people need to become more rounded, confident adults. Qualities that colleges, universities and employers are attracted to” – aims that align with ours, developing in students  “confidence, resilience, focus and motivation to achieve things they never thought they would”.

Across this year G28 students have been learning new skills, volunteering and getting physical. The final part of the award is a two day, one night expedition which our students have been planning and training for last week. Students completed a day of campcraft training on Monday and carried out their practice expeditions in Crews on Friday. Students made excellent time during the day and it was a joy to hear of the levels of maturity, support and skill shown in navigating, hiking, setting up camp and cooking – all of which stands them in good stead for their assessed expedition in July in Northumberland. All students completed a 6.5km route across unfamiliar terrain with backpacks laden with their clothes, tents and cooking equipment.

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As always, our students stepped up to the challenge. Their maturity and independence was commented on throughout the day – how they supported each other, managed the physical challenge, cooked and set up camp for each other and the thorough de-gunge carried out at the end of the day.  We also managed to travel more sustainably on the Metro to get to Callerton Parkway and Airport for our circular route across country.

Thank you to those who have made voluntary contributions so far, this has helped support our purchase of a DofE loan kit for families struggling to be able to purchase the required kit. Every student was fully equipped on Friday, which is thanks to the commitment of all families in G28 as well as the kind donations we have received.

This week

G29 and G30 Student Led Conferences (SLCs) 

SLCs continue this week for our Year7 and Year 8 students.

SLCs, like PoLs, are key moments in the development of our students and it is vital that parents, carers and families fully support SLCs. It has been wonderful to hear of the pride our families, staff and students have felt following SLCs last week and we look forward to hearing more this week.

G28 New Learning Expedition

G28 start a new learning expedition this week with a very quick immersion and then into learning targets proper from Tuesday. We will post more details of the expedition including the guiding question next week once it has been revealed to students.

PE sessions this week

Our PE sessions this week are as follows. Please ensure that your child has their full PE kit.

  • G30 students (Y7) have PE on Monday this week
  • G29 students (Y8) have PE on Wednesday this week.
  • For G28 students (Y9) 
    • G28 Class 1 have PE on Thursday this week
    • G28 Class 2 have PE on Friday this week.

Extended Study and Clubs

Extended study and after school clubs will not be running this week due to G29 and G30 Student led Conferences.

G31 In-Person Information Evening, Thursday 23rd May at 6pm.

As part of our transition work, we are nearly there in meeting all of our new students and their families online. This is a huge undertaking, as you can imagine but having 30 minute family meetings allows us to start getting to know our students well.

On Thursday at 6pm, we will hold an Information Evening for all of our new families in Year 6. It is vital that all families attend as we will give important information about the Outward Bound course that takes place for all students at the start of Year 7 as well as our iPad scheme. In addition, we will address some of the misconceptions about our school so that families are completely clear on what we are: ‘A mainstream school with a relentless focus on beautiful work, character growth and academic success’, and also what we are not. There will be an opportunity for you to ask us questions too of course.

Half term break starts Friday 24th May 

We come to the end of a six week half term on Friday 24th May and as always, we will finish at 1:30pm for our usual de-gunge. 

We return to school on Monday 3rd June 2024. 

As usual if you have any questions please contact your child’s crew leader in the first instance. Thank you as always for your ongoing support.

Julie Mosley

Sharing our Stories: 17/05/2024

Beautiful Work This Week

Why We Crew – XP Trust in Aberdeen

Since 2019 we have been working with the educational charity The Wood Foundation, which is based in Scotland. Dozens of educators from schools in the Aberdeen area have been visiting our Trust as delegates for the last four years – learning about Crew, expeditions and Leadership. 

This week for the first time colleagues from our Trust, including our CAO Andy, had the opportunity to deliver CPD to teachers in Aberdeen, visiting schools and meeting students. It was heartwarming and humbling to see Crew – sometimes called Squads and Clans north of the border – being delivered in Scotland. 

We look forward to welcoming more delegates to our Trust schools in the future and travelling back to support our new friends as they continue their Crew journey.

There Is No Planet B – Product Curation at Norton Juniors

The beautiful work from LKS2’s Expedition ‘There Is No Planet B’ is now curated outside the school! The awesome artwork, created from digital images of discarded waste, depicts various different animals whose habitats are being destroyed in the local community. To further reinforce the notion of climate emergency, through their literacy cycle, pupils also wrote persuasive speeches about how we can all bring about positive change if we work together. 

Top of the Blogs

Highlights from Crew Day @ XP Gateshead

Football Logos @ Norton Infants

Sugar Rush @ Green Top

Aerial View @ Plover

Mental Health Week Continues @ Carcroft School

Mayan Mask Madness @ Norton Junior School

History and Ethics Fieldwork @ XP School

Super focus from Year 11 @ XP East

Share your stories with us!

We now have a new dedicated news email so that you can send your stories, updates or ideas about potential news articles directly to us in Comms.

It might be something you or your students have achieved, a charity you’re supporting or anything at all that deserves a wider audience.

Write to us at [email protected] –  we want to hear about it, write about it and celebrate it!

A reminder that next week on Thursday 23rd May at 6pm we are hosting an in-school session for all families of Year 6 children who are joining us next academic year. Your children do not need to attend this meeting, but it is vital that all families attend.

Please confirm that you are attending by clicking this link.

This meeting will look in depth at:

  • Our iPad scheme
  • The Ullswater Outward Bound adventure in the first week of term

As we have discussed in our online family meetings, the first week of school is so important in terms of learning about Crew and bonding with new peers. This adventure is not optional, it is an integral part of the school experience so all children must attend Ullswater.


Dear Families

Another week of great work at XP Gateshead, even though we only had 4 days in school! 

Misconceptions continue around the work we do at XPG and, at times, there is a lack of understanding about the academic rigour of our work. Developing literacy is a key aspect of activism and empowerment for all learners. Students need to be great readers and communicators to become effective and positive agents for social change. Therefore, we provide lots of opportunities to read and understand difficult text, as well as to infer and interpret complex ideas and meanings in, and through engaging with texts.  All of our students read and write extensively and present their work publicly to a variety of audiences. Literacy unlocks learning and access to all areas of curriculum – reading, writing, speaking and listening.


XPGPHC – Healthy Food for All?

Our inaugural Public Health Conference last Friday hosted by our Year 9 students was entitled ‘Healthy Food for All?’ and was a great example of what our young people are capable of when supported and challenged to engage with rich texts in readiness to present their learning.


The conference was an in-depth look at inequality in health outcomes and life expectancy in Gateshead viewed through the specific lens of food inequality. This is just one aspect of what our Year 9 students have been studying as part of a longitudinal expedition looking at the people’s health since 1250 in the UK. To be ready for the conference students have had to read widely and internalise data to be able to defend propositions when quizzed by delegates. After keynote speeches and expert panel interviews written and presented by our students,  Year 9 then ran marketplace information stalls and important discussions around public health. As you can see from the examples unpacked below the image, students are grappling with big questions which require sophisticated knowledge which comes from their studies and wide reading:

Nutrition and Social Media: The Risks –  As the popularity of social media grows, who is moderating the advice that is shared? How do we know who to trust? In a world where anyone can present themselves as an expert, how can we make safe and healthy choices and where can we find reliable and professional nutritional advice? Explain how to identify reliable sources. Explain the risks of taking nutrition/diet advice from social media and how to keep yourself safe when using social media for guidance on nutrition. 
The Cost of Obesity – Estimates show that the current social annual cost of obesity in the UK at around £58 billion, equivalent to around 3% of the 2020 UK GDP. Use data to describe the scale of the problem, comment on what you think about this based upon what you research and suggest better ways to spend this money and improve the nation’s health
Food Policy: Free School Meals extension? – In the UK, anyone who receives government benefits or has a household income less than £16,190 per year, is entitled to free school meals. However, there are other countries in the world who offer universal free school meals until the age of 16. Should the Free School Meals programme be extended in the UK and what would the impact be on public health? Explain the current FSM guidance and the impacts of free school meals on nutrition and health. Give examples from other countries about possible benefits and summarise what the data you find suggests would have the best impact on public health.


Our students are challenges to present on complex topics, to an audience beyond the classroom and demonstrate presentation skills that will set them apart from their peers in the next stage of their education or training.

A special thanks to all of our experts from the day:

  • Councillor George Kasfikis – Felling Ward
  • Ruth Sharrock – Consultant respiratory physician and lung cancer lead at QE Gateshead.
  • Lesley Ann Watson – Gateshead Food Bank
  • Alice Wiseman – Director of Public Health for Gateshead


This week

Crew Day – Monday 13th May

On Monday, Crew Day takes place for G28, G29 and G30 to take time to reaffirm the importance of Crew building positive relationships through shared experiences and challenges. Students at XPG are ‘Crew not passengers’.

G30 (Year 7) will be carrying out a walk for water at Gateshead Stadium. As part of their studies for their Spring expedition ‘Staying Alive’ students learned about the processes by which water can be purified, and the lengths that many people in the world go to each day to get water to cook, drink and wash. Students will be raising funds to support Toilet Twinning by taking part in a challenge as a crew to collectively carry 5 litres of water as far as is possible around Gateshead athletics track. See website post for further details of how to sponsor your child and kit needed.

G29 (Year8) will be taking part in a carousel of activities including a design and coding challenge using our Lego robotics kits, a plan for raising awareness of their chosen crew charities and some stewardship around the green areas of our school site. See website post for further details and kit needed for the day.

G28 (Year 9) will be carrying out campcraft training in readiness for their DofE practice expedition. At the end of the day on Monday they will also be carrying out a full kit check and bag pack from 3.30pm – 4.30pm. See website post for further details and kit needed for the day.

G29 and G30 Student Led Conferences (SLCs)

SLCs start for our Year 7 and 8 students and their families this week. Students have worked hard to prepare for their conference, preparing to share their recent work, evidence of work around the pledges they have shared and responses to the questions parents and carers have asked to be addressed in the conference. Please can I remind all families that SLCs, like PoLs, are key moments in the development of our students and it is vital that parents, carers and families fully support SLCs. 

PE sessions this week

There are some changes to PE sessions this week due to Crew Day and G28’s DofE practice expedition . Please ensure that your child has their  full PE kit for sessions.

  • G30  students (Y7) have PE on Wednesday this week.
  • G29 students (Y8) have PE on Wednesday this week.
  • G28 students (Y9) have PE on Thursday this week

Extended Study and Clubs

Extended study and after school clubs will not be running over the next two weeks due to G29 and G30 Student led Conferences.

G28 DofE Practice Expedition – Friday 17th May 

Our Y9 students will be carrying out their DofE bronze practice expedition on Friday. This will take place offsite for most of the day with the final part taking place on our school site until 7pm. Students should arrive at school for the normal time, we will travel by Metro to the start of the circular practice hike near Callerton Parkway, then return to school by Metro in the afternoon where students will practise setting up camp and cooking an evening meal. We expect the day to conclude at around 7pm.

This is part of getting them ready for the final assessed expedition which will take place on Friday 5th July – Saturday the 6th July. Please see the recent letter for more details on the practice and final expeditions along with the kit needed. 

Supporting families with DofE kit – XPG Voluntary School Donation

As a school, we fully fund DofE and have allocated a significant budget for start-up costs (tents, sleeping bags, backpacks, etc). We would also like to add to this kit over time and be able to loan hiking boats, waterproof coats and trousers to support families who are not in the position to be able to buy these items for their children. 

We have been approached by several parents over time who have wanted to make voluntary financial contributions to the school to support XP Gateshead and the work we do in learning expeditions and other activities. We have decided to open up an option on Parent Pay ‘XPG Voluntary School Donation’ to allow for any parent/carer to be able to make a contribution if they would like to. At the moment, we will use contributions to build our DofE loan kit so that all students have access to the required kit and this will be in place for future generations of Year 9 students.

Thank you to those families who have offered to support our work and for their generosity.

…and to all families for doing what you can to support your children to produce beautiful work, develop character and see academic success.

If you have any questions please contact your child’s crew leader in the first instance. 

Thank you as always for your ongoing support.

Julie Mosley


Sharing our Stories: 10/05/2024

Beautiful Work This Week

XPGPHC – How can we continue to make progress in public health?

Year 9 students at XPG have embarked on their “You Give Me Fever” Expedition, which has culminated in their inaugural Public Health conference, addressing the challenges of public health amidst the cost-of-living crisis. Through three case studies examining historical and current health influences, they explored the impact of living conditions, government structures, and scientific advancements on people’s well-being.

This comprehensive analysis has also resulted in a formal report that presented key health risks for Gateshead’s residents, particularly in the context of the cost-of-living crisis. The report will be shared with the Health and Social Care Committee in Parliament.

Art takes flight at XPG!

Freya, a Year 7 student at XP Gateshead has created a beautiful piece of work that has been awarded a place in one of the most prestigious art galleries in the world. The Royal Academy is famous for showcasing new and established artists, bringing their work to a whole new audience. 

The Young Artists Summer show, which is open for submissions to students studying in the UK aged from 4 – 19, opens in London on the 16th July and runs until the 11th August.

Freya’s painting Mr Pigeon was part of the expedition ‘Do your bit’ and honours the sacrifice that carrier pigeons made during WW1 and has been chosen from 21,500 other submissions. A remarkable achievement for a clearly talented and inspiring young artist. 

We’ll follow up this story when Freya’s artwork is in place at the Royal Academy!

Is Science enough to save lives?

As part of their Expedition ‘You Give Me Fever’, C28 celebrated their learning this week – complete with a gallery of their incredible artwork. They shared scientific writing about diseases and their impact on society, dating back to the middle ages.

They sold their prints to raise money for their DofE Expedition – and the content will also be made into a book later in the year!

Top of the Blogs

Weekly Update for Families @ XP Gateshead

How can we save our seas? @ Norton Infants

Community Crew @ Green Top

How do you make ice cream? @ Plover

Caring for our sunflowers @ Carcroft School

Mindboggling Mayans @ Norton Junior School

Visit to the National Holocaust Museum @ XP School

Year 9 Sharing Portfolios with Visitors @ XP East

Join our Crew – we’re looking for a Maths Teacher at XP Doncaster!

Share your stories with us!

We now have a new dedicated news email so that you can send your stories, updates or ideas about potential news articles directly to us in Comms.

It might be something you or your students have achieved, a charity you’re supporting or anything at all that deserves a wider audience.

Write to us at [email protected] –  we want to hear about it, write about it and celebrate it!