Art Club

Times: Tuesdays from 1:20, and Wednesdays and Thursdays from 4:50 – 6:20pm
Venue: Art Rooms
Contact: Mr Berry -

An opportunity for all Senior School Art students to do their Art prep, or continue with their projects.

Badminton Club

Time: Autumn Term (Monday prep before half term and Wednesday lunchtimes after half term).
Venue: Sports Hall
Contact: Mr Thorpe –

Badminton is a racket game and is one of the five major racket sports. Unlike the other racket sports badminton is purely a volley sport in which the shuttlecock is not allowed to land on the floor before the opponent hits it. Badminton can be played by two opposing players (singles) or two opposing pairs (doubles), Playing badminton whether for fun as a hobby or on a more competitive level, is not only fun, but will improve your overall health significantly

Come along to Badminton and enjoy playing this game with friends whilst gradually improving your skill and fitness.

Bagpipe Club

Times: Monday evenings from 5.30 – 6.20pm and on Thursday lunchtimes from 1.15.
Venue: Chapel
Contact: Mr Kellighan –

The Bagpipe club aims to teach pupils and staff at Ratcliffe the Great Highland Bagpipe and/or the drums that accompany them in a pipe band. We have the support of the Pipe Major of the successful local pipe band: the Birstal Seaforth Highlanders, as well as the teaching of Mr Kellighan of the RS department. The club aims to provide a group of pipers and drummers for engagements throughout the school calendar in the not too distant future.

The cost of learning has been kept to an absolute minimum of £25 per term, which includes the initial equipment and music necessary.

Beginners are very welcome.

Carnegie Shadowing Group

Time: Fridays from 1:15pm
Venue: Emery Library
Contact: Mrs Whieldon –

On a weekly basis a group of enthusiastic, avid readers from Year 9 meet to discuss the Carnegie Medal short list. Before the list is announced a meeting is held to assess the merits of the novels on the long list and to introduce pupils to the importance of this prestigious literary award. Meetings start in the spring term, just before the short list for 2015 is announced on March 17th. Subsequent meetings are used to review each of the short-listed novels in turn. The group then choose their favourite before the winning novel is announced on June 22nd. The final meeting before the announcement always generates the most excitement. In past years the group have been invited to Trent College, attended a Carnegie party and quiz and, more recently, delivered a presentation to an invited group of staff and students. Each pupil then contributes to the Ratcliffe College section of the Carnegie Medal’s web page, detailing reviews of the novels as well as their experiences being part of a reading group.

Chess Club

Time: Thursdays from 1:20pm
Venue: Languages 4 (L4)
Contact: Mr Sleath –

Open to years 7-11. The Chess Club is open to pupils of all abilities, though is primarily for beginners and those with relatively limited experience. The emphasis is very much on enjoyment and grasping the basic principles and strategies of the game.

Cooking Club

Time: Monday from 4:20pm
Venue: Food Technology
Contact: Mrs Burton –

Monday evening in the practical Food Technology room is Cooking Club, which is home for our popular extra-curricular activity. Students are divided into two groups of approximately ten to twelve students and over the term so far have made Millies cookies, individual fruit pies, pineapple upside-down cake and cupcakes.

Cool Maths Club

Time: Monday, Wednesday, Thursday and Fridays from 1:20pm
Venue: Maths Block
Contact: Mr Higham –

Cool Maths caters for everyone, whatever their ability, promoting a positive culture and passion for mathematics.

Cool Maths provides:

  • Fun opportunities for those students wanting to challenge themselves by attempting problems and puzzles outside the normal curriculum.
  • Individual help for those who have not fully grasped what they have covered in lessons
  • Specialist supervision for those in need of encouragement
  • Individual help for those who have been unable to complete their homework
  • Specialised help for those who need to catch up on what they have missed
  • Computer based games and puzzles – available on the dedicated suite of laptops in the Maths Block.

Cross Stitch Club

Time: Mondays from 4:15 – 5:15pm
Venue: Preparatory School
Contact: Miss Watson –

We very much enjoy coming together for a relaxing time on a Monday night. We chat about the day and listen to music, as we sew together! The children are now able to use crosses to make pictures on the material and have produced some beautiful bookmarks and pictures. Some children have even used their imagination to design their own pictures.

Film Club

Time: Mondays from 4:20pm
Venue: English 4 (E4)
Contact: Mrs Bennett –

Flight Club

Times: Thursday and Friday from 1:20pm
Venue: Art Rooms
Contact: Mr Berry –

At this stage we are flying remote controlled helicopters and quad drones, both FPV and other.  The club is open to all sorts of ideas related to flight and flying.

Game kNight

Times: Wednesday from 4:20pm
Venue: English 4 (E4)
Contact: Mrs Bennett –

Game kNight is a legacy of Old Ratcliffian Daniel Chin, and now runs under the guidance of Mrs Bennett, who began the group in 2013 with Daniel. It is an opportunity for an elite group of board game enthusiasts to take on some of the more dastardly and advanced challenges of the board game world, and is appreciated as a ‘time-out’ for students to socialise, have fun and compete during the busy school week.

Golf Society

History Film Club

Time: Friday from 1:20pm
Venue: History 2 (H2)
Contact: Mr Cantrill –

We have a committed number of Sixth Form students who attend every week. The idea behind the club is to allow students to broaden their existing knowledge of history or to gain some new knowledge about events not studied. To date we have watched, The Pianist, Elizabeth, Anna Karenina, the Kingdom of Heaven and The Great Gatsby to name but a few. The latter film was shown before setting off on a school trip to New York. This allowed the students who went to get a feel for 1920s America art and culture before experiencing it for themselves. We will continue to pick films that are topical or which represent new areas history for the students.

IFS ProShare Student Challenge

Time: Tuesdays from 1:15pm
Venue: Business and Economics
Contact: Mrs Spencer –

This is a national competition that offers students the opportunity to trade on a virtual stock market.  Students have to enter in teams of 4 and each team are given a ‘virtual’ £100,000 to invest.  Teams trade over a period of 3 months (November 2014 to February 2015).

Prizes include; Winning team – a week long, all-expenses paid educational trip to New York for themselves and their teacher. They also win £2000 prize money for their school and £200 for each team member. The second placed team wins £1500 for their school and £150 for each team member and the third placed team wins £1000 for their school and £100 for each team member.  The challenge is also included in the schools house competition, with points allocated proportionally, dependent on a team’s success.

Intermediate Orchestra

Time: Fridays from 1:15pm
Venue: Music Hall
Contact: Miss Kulisa –

Years 5-13. This orchestra includes beginners and intermediate players who want to improve their musicianship skills while playing with others. We perform at several music events in the school including the Last Night of the Proms, Picnic Concert and Assemblies. Our repertoire is a variety of well-known tunes that are fun and also challenging to play.

Lego and Raspberry Pi Club

Time: Wednesdays from 1:20pm
Venue: Computer Room
Contact: Mrs Arnold –

Lego Club meets every Wednesday lunchtime in the Autumn and Spring terms. It was started as an introduction to programming and has evolved from there. Activities that take place within the club are using Lego Mindstorm to programme Lego robots, other types of programming using Lighbot and Robomind as well as good old fashioned Lego building and playing. This year we have also introduced Raspberry Pis to extend the options for programming still further.

Model United Nations

Time: Thursdays from 4:50pm
Venue: History 2 (H2)
Contact: Mr Cantrill –

Ratcliffe College is proud to compete in the prestigious annual Bath International Schools Model United Nations Conference each March at Kingswood School, Bath. Delegations representing assigned nations engage in lively, relevant debates in a range of committees focusing on areas from environmental issues to disarmament and human rights. Our students engage with some of the brightest young minds in the country as they put forward the viewpoints of their nation and argue for or against topical resolutions to be passed.

Through the autumn and spring terms at Ratcliffe students prepare for the conference, initially through learning about the mechanisms, routines and rubric of the United Nations and later, once assigned a country to represent, through detailed and fastidious research of the views they would carry. The after school sessions are aimed at stimulating discussion and fostering an interest in geopolitical issues that are relevant in the world today. Examples might include attitudes towards women’s rights in the Middle East, the distribution of aid or the policies of a country on nuclear energy and arms.

Once we are assigned nations to represent the students form two delegations and the work put in through the year culminates in the annual conference in Bath. The conference opens with a keynote speech from a guest speaker which has proved inspirational in recent years, before political manoeuvring and debating begins. The conference not only allows students an opportunity to hone their debating skills but helps students develop transferrable skills such as research, presenting, group liaising and networking. It is also an enjoyable social experience and in recent years our students have been outstanding representatives of Ratcliffe and we are immeasurably proud of them.

Mother Teresa Group

Time: Wednesdays (week 1) from 4:30pm
Venue: Emery Library
Contact: Mrs S Clarke –

Mother Teresa of Calcutta once said, ‘We are asked to do no great thing, only small things done with great love.’ ‘Do not wait for leaders; do it alone, person to person’

She couldn’t possibly change the lives of all the poor in India, but she knew she could make a difference to some and through her hard work in small steps she made a huge difference.

At Ratcliffe we have our own Mother Teresa group. This is a group of Sixth Form students who collect unwanted clothes and old school uniform. We meet for tea, a chat and prayer whilst sorting and folding the donated clothes. The clothes are then donated to local charities for them to sell to raise funds to support the charity’s work. The old school uniform is sent to Tilinanu Orphanage in Malawi.

Preparatory Choir

Time: Thursday from 12:50pm
Venue: Newman Hall
Contact: Mr Jones –

All keen singers are invited to attend this rehearsal.  There are numerous events throughout the year which need a fantastic choir such as RATs concerts, Carol Services, Picnic Concerts and many more.  The choir is made up of around 30 students who all love to sing, regardless of their musical background.

Preparatory Dance Club

Time: Thursdays from 4:15 – 5:15pm
Venue: Latin Room
Contact: Mrs Walker –

Years 3 and 4. Students learn a variety of dances covering a number of genres including street dance and contemporary dance and enjoy making up their own routines to perform to the group.

Preparatory String Ensemble

Time: Thursdays at 8:00am
Venue: Music Classroom
Contact: Mr Jones –

Violinists, viola players and cellists are all welcome at this group, which aims to support the progress of the Prep School’s finest string players.  Like the Wind Ensemble, it aims to perform at least once a term and will occasionally join forces with the Wind group to form a full orchestra for special occasions.

Preparatory Wind Ensemble

Time: Tuesdays from 12:50pm
Venue: Music Room
Contact: Mr Jones –

This group provides a chance for our talented wind and brass players to come together and learn pieces that push the students both in terms of their ability and towards a goal of performance.  The group aims to perform at least once a term either in Friday assemblies or other school events such as the Carol Service as required.

Public Speaking and Debating Club

Time: Thursdays at 1:15pm
Venue: English 1 (E1)
Contact: Mr Benjamin –

Years 7-13. The Public Speaking and Debating Society welcomes all members of the Ratcliffe Community.  The lunchtime activity focuses on Debate and Public Speaking.  Debating topics are generally contemporary and arise from ‘house’ agreement  of subjects.  Both disciplines focus on techniques of presentation and elements of style.  Students learn how to initiate and respond to argument.  Audience engagement is paramount to both disciplines.  All ability levels are invited.

The club actively seeks outside competition and will participate in a variety of events, including the Catenian Association Catholic Secondary Schools Public Speaking Contest  each March.