BBC School Report 2015

Stay tuned for all the news from Ark Academy on BBC School Report Newsday 2015 on Thursday 19th March!!

We will be uploading throughout the day and you can catch up on the School Report happenings throughout the country on


Solar Eclipse Phenomenon - Good Or Bad?

By Olivia and Aleeza, Year 7

Its National Science and Engineering week at Ark Academy so the celestial events couldn’t be here at a better time.

On Friday 20th of March 2015 at 08:45 the moon will pass directly between the earth and sun, therefore obstructing the sun. It has been debated whether or not this is a good or bad phenomenon.

During this we will be able to see 15% of the sun only so 85% is completely blocked by the moon (in London). This will be taking place all over the world so the timings vary.

In London and Belfast we will be able to see the eclipse at 9:30 am, 9:35 am in Edinburgh and 9:28 am in Cardiff. Northern Ireland and Scotland are expected to experience the darkest conditions with only 2% of the sun showing.

A solar Eclipse has occurred previously during the summer of 1999 and was watched by millions of anticipated viewers.

However many people think that this rare phenomenon is bad as looking directly at the eclipse without protection can blind you, although warnings of total blindness are probably an over-reaction.

It has been advised that viewers purchase solar eclipse glasses or create a pinhole camera. This projects the image of the solar eclipse onto a piece of camera.

This is good because it allows unprepared people the advantage of seeing the eclipse and is also fun and easy to make.

It is created from two pieces of card with one containing a small hole in the centre which is no larger than 4mm.

Then tilt the card with the hole towards the sun and use it to project the image onto the card board. They should only be used with your back to the sun.   

As well as being a threat to eyes, the solar eclipse could affect the country's solar energy with energy created by solar panels expected to drop by 75%. This is due to the fact that solar power provides 1.5% of the UK’s total power output. The solar eclipse could cause a drastic decrease in energy for the country and may cause power surges.

This is when the flow of energy is interrupted and starts again. However Leonie Greene of the trade association thinks that the eclipse is not a concern. She said:

“The impact of the eclipse on solar will be known by grid managers and it will pose no problem to the power supply. Far more challenging is the surge in power demand after the eclipse as everyone goes indoors for a cup of tea.”

Based on the analysis of what happened in 1999 national grid advises people to stop and watch the phenomenon which will be visible in the UK and should last for a couple of hours, with the next full eclipse in 2090.

We don’t want to wait until 2090 to see one so we will be watching out for it tomorrow with our eyes safely covered!

And that's not all Friday has in store....

The Super Moon:

The Super Moon is when the moon appears larger than the normal full moon by around 15% and 30% brighter than usual. During this process the moon comes a little closer to the earth then normally expected. The moon being larger will also affect the waves. Making them larger and bigger tides then before 

The Spring Equinox:

The Spring Equinox is when the duration of day and night are approximately the same. This occurs on every 20th March and September of every year.

In addition, Year 7 is learning about Physics (space, forces and astronomy) which links in perfectly with these celestial events.


Champions League Football - Man City dumped HART-lessly                     

Match Report by Abdul, Year 7 student

Last night, Manchester City was knocked out of the Champions League by beastly Barcelona. A measly one goal in the second leg allowed Barcelona to win 3-1 on aggregate. Joe Hart’s valiant efforts went down in vain. A bewildering 10 saves gave Man City many chances to equalise, but after Man City skipper- Sergio Ageuro- missed a penalty, all hope for Manchester City was lost. As a result of this, no English football club is in the Champions League as Arsenal lost against Monaco on away goals and Chelsea lost to Paris Saint-Germaine on away goals as well.

Man City goalie, Joe Hart, irritated Lionel Messi all night stopping many of his shots, which would have been let in by some of the most legendary goalkeepers. But, when push came to shove, Hart, unfortunately let in Ivan Rakitic’s volley.

NBA Basketball - Warriors cruise past Hawks to maintain best record in NBA

Match Report by Ahshon, Year 7 student

On Wednesday 18th March 2015,  the Golden State Warriors won their fifth straight match-up. It was a combination of incredible skill and teamwork, which led to a devastating loss for Atlanta. With a total of 39 assists, this was a staggering game for the Warriors.

The outstanding player of the game was Andre Iguodala with 21 points, 2 rebounds, 6 assists and 3 steals. He was followed by Stephen Curry with 16 points and 12 assists. These two players’ mind boggling performance fueled Golden State’s bliss, making them wonder if this is the beginning of a long streak of victory.

Stephen Curry said: “We obviously wanted to win because even Atlanta cheered for us. This became clear even before we looked at the stats for the game.”

Even though Atlanta lost, they still had some decent stats too. DeMarre Carrol had 16 points, 12 rebounds, 3 assists, and 2 blocks.

In my professional opinion, I think that the Warriors got a well-deserved win. It was a mixture of confidence and obviously the manager Bob Myers had a great plan.


By Saif, Year 7 student

Do you believe in miracles? No? In 2012 Valentin Gruener rescued a young lion cub and raised it himself at a wildlife park in Botswana. However, this was only the beginning of the most abnormal of relationships to ever be discovered in the history of mankind.

Gruener states: “Since the lion arrived, which is three years now, I haven't really left the camp.”

Though it seems that Gruener has been blessed with the presence of this astonishing creature, he states it has been far from easy: “You have this tiny cute animal sitting there and it's already quite feisty," he says. "It will become about 10 times that size and you will have to deal with it."

In my valid opinion, animals can be dreadfully unpredictable; there have been many recorded events of trusting animals that have resulted in death. Henceforth, raising a lion is not the most intelligent choice.

Moreover, statistics support this because 7 in 10 Ark Academy students agree that Valentin Gruener has been incorrect to raise this lion.

However, my fellow student Ahshon disagrees. “I think animals have rights and should be treated with respect and affection like the lion hugger is doing!”

Overall, despite all the controversy, everyone can unite and accept that this relationship is truly a miracle.


Is there too much gas in our atmosphere?

By Oliver, Year 8 student

Solar radiation is getting into our atmosphere but is it going back out into space? Or is it giving us a thermal blanket over our air, warming it up with devastating consequences?

We power our everyday life; cars, electricity and hot water. As we use them over and over again hazardous gases are released into our atmosphere and settling on the surface of the atmosphere. The layer of greenhouse gas sitting there intercepts the infrared radiation from the natural solar radiation warming up the atmosphere.

If this continues we will face many shattering impacts in the years to come. These could include sea level rise which will only lead to flooding in many countries, diminishing the land along with erosion.

There will also be many destructive hurricanes as the sea is continuously rising in temperature causing many fish species leading to extinction.

This will dramatically affect the food chains leading to more animal extinctions.

A newly discovered example of this is a glacier the size of California which is in terrible danger of melting away as if it had never been there.

If the glacier melts, sea levels will increase by 3.5 metres (11.5ft).

We can all do our bit in discontinuing global warming by changing our daily lifestyle. Perhaps you could consider reducing the amount of hot water you use during your shower. Using a shower timer to ensure you do not use too much. You could find an alternative way of transport, maybe if your job is only 1 tube stop away; consider cycling, if you have a bicycle.

Be healthy and take advantage of your abilities! John Kerry, the US Secretary Of State, gave his opinion on the future impacts of global warming. Mr Kerry described them as "severe, pervasive and irreversible". We all believe global warming is irreversible, but we can stop it from happening to a greater extent.

Danger Hovering Above Us                       

Report by Abdul          

A health threat is claimed to endanger lives as deadly toxic smog clouds loom all around us.

Smog affects everyone, as our body does not appreciate harmful substances. Our own city, London, is on Level 4 on how affected it is. As a result, we are classed as moderately affected. Furthermore, asthma sufferers are at a greater risk of having dangerous asthma attacks.

Smog can affect the way your lungs work because the lung airways particles become inflamed with mucus - leading to breathing problems.


1.6 million people suffered asthma attacks in conditions just like now last year.
29,000 deaths are caused a year because of vulnerability to pollution.


Sims 4 by Maria & Rhea, Year 8 students (and avid fans!)

Personally, we love the game Sims 4.

It is absolutely hilarious and is really well designed. The graphics and animations have been well thought through and  are really detailed. On Sims 4 there are various tasks to carry out such as: getting a job, earning money, learning how to cook, learning skills, paying house bills and even raising children.

Sims 4 prepares teenagers and young adults how to survive in the real world. You can customize your Sim whichever way you want-they can look exactly like you, with features such as beauty spots, hairstyles and even shoe size!

Career Prospects & Life Span

There are many aspirations to choose from - musician, cook, writer, and artist - even a criminal! You can add traits to your character which changes how they act, how they respond to things and how they react to changes. There are many traits to choose from to add to your Sim such as: moody, cheerful, snob, geek, family-orientated, materialistic or even evil!

Our own personal experience of Sims 4 has been wonderful - we both have raised lots of families and have watched the circle of life happen in front of our lives, from babies being born to elderlies being taken away to a grave by the Grim Reaper!

All Sims age up every couple of Sim weeks, as time goes faster in the game (one second in real life is a ‘Sim’ minute.) You go from baby, to child, then teen and into young adult, off to being an adult then and elderly, and finishing life being a ghost.

Rhea’s favourite experience of Sims 4 is creating her first Sim and watching her and her family grow, her name was Jennette but sadly she died of old age. Maria’sfavourite experience of Sims is finding out my first Sim, Marcella, was pregnant with twins, Jaxton and Jacobo.


We found out about Sims through YouTube, as lots of YouTubers play Sims, such as Zoella, also known as Zoe Sugg. There is concern that these video bloggers, or vloggers are having too much of an influcence on teenagers though. However, there are some downsides to Sims 4 such as sexual actions which can be too mature for younger children. For example in Russia Sims 4 has been rated 18+ because you can have same-sex relationship which is illegal in Russia. In terms of the technical side and achieving goals,  some people think that Sims 4 is a game with no target and is pointless as the game is non-linear.

In conclusion, we believe that Sims 4 is a very educational yet fun game to play although others may not agree.

Books vs. Movies - Which do you think wins?

Survey and opinion by Rhea and Maria

We conducted a poll with our fellow writers and asked them one question: “Would you rather read the Divergent series, watch the movies or both?”

Our results were that 66% would rather watch the movies, 0% would only read the books and 34% would do both. Also, Oliver feels that: ‘Reading is too predictable which makes it really boring’. Zoyia says that: ‘It is a good way to pass time, but still thinks the movies are better’. Shukri says: ‘I find reading enjoyable however it sometimes can be boring if the storyline is unoriginal’

It is rather obvious that younger children believe that books are boring and ‘not as good as the movie’. What they don’t realise is that reading is a part of everyday life and should be appreciated, as many children do not get the opportunity or equipment to learn how to read, let alone watch movies.

Also, books improve your English. Nowadays, teenagers are falling behind because of the lack of English knowledge almost a third of pupils who reached national targets at 11 failed to gain good GCSEs in the subject aged 16.

If this continues, the English language will be a thing of the past and will then be morphed into an abbreviated language. We need to enhance our vocabulary, reading and skills our future generations can express their opinions in a more appropriate manner than saying 'lol' every time they find something funny and so they do not speak in abbreviations.

Basic vocabulary is becoming more present in our everyday lives and we need to prevent it from taking over our mouths and brains for good. Otherwise, words will be forgotten and so will the English language. However, some think that books are wasting paper and that movies will help us understand more about story because if you’re not good at reading, watching movies which will help feel the emotions of the characters and may help us the imagine the events in the storyline.