External Academic Competitions

External Academic Competitions

At Durston House, we seek to educate the boys well beyond the curriculum and what may be required for successful entry to Senior Schools. The school offers boys the chance to extend their capability by participation in academic competitions sponsored by outside organisations. Such an offer is matched by the boys’ enthusiasm and thirst for further knowledge and experience.

In Mathematics, all boys in Middle and Upper School participate in the Primary Mathematics Challenge and the Junior Mathematical Challenge, which are organised by the Mathematical Association and the United Kingdom Mathematics Trust. They challenge the boys’ mathematical thinking skills, training them to work systematically and to read carefully all the information given, before drawing a conclusion. Whilst the most successful boys are invited to the next stage of these competitions, all boys benefit from these challenges and develop a more logical approach to problem-solving.

Each year, boys in Years 7 and 8 who have a passion for History and who read widely in the subject, extending their knowledge well beyond what is taught in the classroom, participate in the Townsend Warner History Prize. Boys are tested on historical knowledge, from ancient times through to the modern day. Historical personages and royal tradition, empires and governments, wars and battles are some of the areas about which they are challenged. Boys relish being chosen for this competition, nothing less than a three-hour examination!

Selected boys in Year 7 are entered as teams in the Salters’ Festival of Chemistry. This is an initiative of the Salters’ Institute, whose aim it is to promote the appreciation of chemistry and related sciences amongst the young. Recently the boys competed against other schools in two teams of four in a hands-on practical activity named ‘Murder comes to Salterstown’. Knowledge of chemistry alone is not enough, but team work, problem-solving and investigative skills are essential for success at this Festival. We won!