Balwearie High School

DAS News

S5/6 Learning outside the Classroom

S5/6 have not allowed the cold weather to keep them indoors!  They have enjoyed a series of trips outside school enriching learning opportunities.  They reflected on their visits during English lessons:

Changing land Use in Kirkcaldy-Friday 2nd February

Our class S5/6 went for a walk to the museum in Kirkcaldy as part of our social studies project on Scottish land use. First we walked along the prom and saw how the sea wall had changed from rocks and boulders to a proper stoned sea wall. Then we looked at the posh new apartments that used to be a night club. Next we went to the museum and read about other land use changes in Kirkcaldy. We read about the Nairn’s Factory that had made linoleum for many years and how parts of the building has been made into flats and a gym. It was really interesting learning about the history of Kirkcaldy and discovering how and why things have changed.


Quarrymill trip - Tuesday 6th February

We went to Quarrymill Woodland and a member of the RSPB helped us discover a lot of interesting things about the Woodland. We found out about the animals and plants that live there. Firstly we did an activity called ‘Meet the tree’ to find out about the different types of trees at Quarrymill. We played a fun game called Sardines to warm us up as it was a really cold day. Next we searched for tracks and signs of animals to see where they live at Quarrymill.  We discovered that lots of animals live in the woods although we didn’t actually see very many. After lunch we drew sound maps. We found a quiet place to sit and listened to the sounds of the woodland. Miranda from the RSPB linked this activity to mindfulness and the importance of natural habitats for human health. We certainly felt very relaxed after spending a day outdoors at Quarrymill!



Residential trip 2018

Plans are now well underway for the annual DAS residential trip.  This year the trip is scheduled for a three day visit to Calvert Trust Kielder where ten senior DAS pupils and three members of staff will head off to enjoy a range of activities led by outdoor instructors.  DAS are delighted to have received funding from Children in Need to subsidise the cost of the trip.


Dynamic Earth

S2/3 travelled to Edinburgh for a session of learning outside the classroom linked to their Social Studies topic.  All pupils had a ball and loved the trip.  Mrs Haldane was very proud of them in every aspect: enthusiasm for learning; respect for other visitors; support for each other and in behaviour and relationships throughout the visit.  Colton McMahon shares his report of the trip:

On Wednesday 31st January S2/3b went to Dynamic Earth as part of our Solids, Liquids and Gases topic. We had a great day and here are some of our highlights:


  • Show Dome- we sat in seats and I saw space on the roof.
  • Workshop – this was all about weather and the water cycle. We made a tornado with a bottle.
  • Time machine - we went back in time to see the Big Bang. We went in a pretend space ship.
  • Volcano - The volcano erupted and the floor moved.
  • Movie - Scottish highlands and glaciers were on the movie and we went under water.
  • Ice-berg - There was a room where you could touch the ice berg.
  • 4d movie - There was a rhino that looked like it was coming out the screen.

Rainforest there was a thunder storm and pretend animals that moved.

By Colton

Well done Colton – you have captured a sense of the variety of activities during the day and the wonder of the natural world!


Jings Crivens Help Ma Boab

On Friday 26th January, Balwearie DAS pupils and staff had a fantastic time celebrating Scottish culture.  The morning saw a change of learning setting where pupils had a rota of learning activities: Highland Games (including tossing the caber!); Scottish Country Dancing; Tartan Patterns; Wii Golf and Tennis; Banner making; Make a Scottie Dug and an interactive Scottish themed session from Maureen, a Sensory Storyteller guest from PAMIS. The afternoon was then a whole department celebration of live music, dancing, poetry and song in the DAS gym which had been decorated with a wonderful selection of pupils’ artwork.  Pupils and staff had made a special effort to wear something tartan for the occasion.  Several classes performed poetry in Scots tongue and showed exceptional talent and enthusiasm.  Mrs Ferguson from the Guidance/Music Department very kindly rearranged her afternoon to play her accordion for us, Ian Scott, a senior pupil from mainstream was our piper for the afternoon and was very warmly received.  Ian piped in the haggis carried by Poosie Nancy (Chloe McCallum). Ian Stephen confidently recited the Address to the Haggis.  Everyone enjoyed their share of haggis, neeps and tatties which tasted delicious washed down with a wee cheeky Irn Bru! Mr McNeil and Mr Currie were welcome guests in the afternoon to join in the celebrations too.  The afternoon ended with a rousing rendition of Auld Lang Syne – we all had a fantastic day to remember! Well done to everyone for all the hard work in making this a most enjoyable day.


Cross Country on our Doorstep!

Series 3 of the cross country championships was held at Beveridge Park on Thursday 1st Feb. Balwearie had a strong team, all pupils ran really well but special performances from the following:


  • 500m girl’s race - Chloe McCallum came 2nd place and Rebecca Fairley came 3rd
  • 500m boy’s race - Shaun Carter started strong, took the lead from the beginning and finished in 1st place.
  • 1km girl’s race - Rosalind Penman came 3rd place behind two very strong runners


A group of 11 pupils took part in the first ever 'Walk in the Park' a 500m walk that took place just before the first race. Balwearie and Rosslyn were the first schools to take part in this new event – we are never likely to miss out on an opportunity for our very active young people!


Bright Futures/Rural Skills Academy

Balwearie DAS are delighted to be able to offer a second group of pupils, all girls this time, to travel to Kinghorn Ecology Centre every Thursday for six weeks to enjoy the Rural Skills Academy.  The girls are thoroughly enjoying this fantastic opportunity and love learning skills in the natural environment.  They are clearly developing their skills for life, learning and work.