Nicolson Notes - Ceilidh for U.S visitors

The Pendleton group on arrival in the Islands
The Pendleton group on arrival in the Islands


Senior pupils from The Nicolson Institute and Sgoil Lionacleit travelled to Sir E. Scott School recently to take part in a workshop with musicians from the Scottish Chamber Orchestra.

The workshop was on the topic of American minimalist composers and their compositional techniques. The day finished with a performance by the pupils of two pieces they composed using these techniques. As well as enjoying the workshop with professional musicians, the pupils from different schools enjoyed meeting and working together (see photo right middle).


The school is delighted to welcome two new members of teaching staff. Mr C Rigg joins the Computing Department (pictured below) and Mr R Ross joins as Piping Instructor (pictured bottom middle)


Last month a group of American students and teachers arrived on Lewis to take part in the exchange programme from Stornoway’s twin town of Pendleton, South Carolina, with pupils from The Nicolson Institute hosting them for the duration of their stay.

As well as visiting all the main tourist attractions, they also spent a morning in school going to classes and played a shinty match in the afternoon.

On their last evening the Scottish pupils hosted a ceilidh, giving all exchange pupils and their families a chance to relax and enjoy some food and traditional Scottish dancing.

In April 2018 the Nicolson exchange pupils fly to South Carolina for the return visit. Dr Avery, Pendleton High School’s School Superintendent, commented: “Before arriving we tend to focus on where and how we are different but, by the time we leave, we realise that we actually have more in common than we thought.”

The photo (top right) shows the arrival of the American students in Stornoway.


Pupils in the Art Department recently participated in a Neon Architecture project. They took photos of the interior and exterior of the school and produced sketches from the photos.

From these pupils identified their strongest sketched image and were asked to integrate other aspects of their images into the main image.

Pupils were free to use colour, pattern and texture form the sketches in a personal and creative way. The pictures (bottom left and right)show the final creations from Connor Macleod and Stewart Macritchie (both S3).


S2 pupils get a choice of ‘Electives’ on a Thursday afternoon and one of them is ‘Survival Skills’, with English teacher Ms Sargent, a keen outdoors person and one-time Outdoor Instructor. A recent trip on a lovely day was to Stornoway’s Castle Grounds, where seven pupils made shelters from pieces of timber (see photo right middle).

While their efforts would not have withstood Hebridean storms or heavy rain, they did all have a lot of fun creating them (one created by three boys and one by the four girls) and there were some vital basic lessons on how to stay warm and dry in the event of needing to find shelter in this terrain.


School is closed from 3.35pm on Thursday, October 12th to Thursday, October 26th.