An education begins inside the classroom, but does not end there. An essential dimension to a rounded education are the learning experiences outside of the classroom. We enrich the academic experience of all our students through experimental learning and the opportunity to try new challenges.
School trips make a major contribution to the acquisition of knowledge, development of skills, studies of the natural and man-made world, the present and the past. Science, Arts, Language and Music can all be enhanced outside the classroom. Adventure activity and sports skills can form the foundation of life-long interests. At King William’s College, we’ve taken students all over the world to countries including, Australia, Canada, South Africa, the Far East, Korea, Iceland, Russia, France, Germany, the USA and Japan.
“My favourite thing is that I get to meet a lot of different people, from different age groups and we become a sort of second family. We all care for each and it just feels like another home.”
There are a wide range of extracurricular sports clubs available at lunchtimes and after-school. Students can take part in a wide variety of sports, including: Rugby, football, cricket, basketball, hockey, netball, rounders, athletics, badminton, cross country, dance, fitness, golf, swimming, table tennis, tennis, water polo and yoga.
Each year group receives an after-school sports practice for every major game, depending on the season. In these sessions, the focus is on improving the skills and techniques of the individual and to bring these together to form the School teams. Clubs are offered throughout the year where students receive fitness training, additional coaching and the opportunity to learn sports away from a competitive environment, for example swimming is offered year-round.
There is a full programme of Inter House sport competitions, favourites include the swimming gala and sports day. There are numerous competitions and matches with the local schools and we host termly sport tours to the UK, competing against other independent schools.
Pupils are encouraged to be the best they can be and take up all the higher-level playing opportunities available to them both on and off island. Every three years a World Sports Tour is held where our students travel to play hockey and rugby against other schools and local teams.
Past excursions have included Australia, New Zealand, Canada and South Africa. There is also a Fourth Form bi-annual ski trip. The school stages an annual traditional and fully inclusive Triathlon and College Bay Swim, which has been held for more than 120 years and sees our students swim half a mile in Derbyhaven Bay.
The Island may be small, but road cycling has always been popular on the Isle of Man and has been made more so by the successes of Manx cyclists on the world stage. With its winding roads, the Isle of Man provides a challenge for even the most capable riders.
The area immediately around King William’s College is fairly flat, but head north or west and you will quickly find the hills. The Ballakillowey and Sloc route up South Barrule is a favourite, followed by a breathtaking descent along the coast towards the traditional fishing village of Peel for a coffee and ice cream stop.
Mountain biking is also popular on the island, with hundreds of miles of trail and single-track to be discovered. Volunteer trail builders have been given license to modify the many plantations and you’ll find everything from relaxed, family friendly routes to serious downhill runs.
The Isle of Man boasts eight golf courses within its 572 square kilometres and each course is unique. The jewel in the crown is without doubt the 6800-yard Castletown Golf Links, which is adjacent to King William’s College.
If you’re a keen golfer, a trip across the road is highly recommended. One of the top 100 courses in Great Britain and Ireland, and ranked 261st in the entire world by Rolex, it is a traditional links course which winds around a rugged peninsula. The Irish sea is a feature on most of the holes and the challenging tee shot over the open ocean on the 17th is arguably one of the prettiest in golf.
Golf is a popular sport at King William’s College and students can get involved in a range of activities during the school day, in the evening and at the weekends. We have a strong relationship with Castletown Golf Links, allowing us access to their practice facilities during senior games lessons. Full members can also make use of the course and practice facilities during their free time, as well as joining regular golf competitions.
Students holding a current World Handicap System Handicap Index can take part in competitive golf at Castletown Golf Links. Competitions are held every Saturday, with additional competitions taking place on Sundays and Wednesday evenings during summer. Students without a handicap can work towards one by completing rounds of golf with other student members
Lessons with Castletown’s PGA professional are available by arrangement and can take place either at the course or at the College’s indoor golf simulator.
Music thrives at King William’s College and plays a key part in School life. We strive for excellence in all aspects of music and actively encourage creativity of expression. Pupils can learn and perform on a variety of instruments, both individually and with others and are able to sing in choirs, groups and with the school staff. As a Christian school, pupils have the opportunity to take part in the Chapel services during festivals and special events, and are also invited to participate in competitions and concerts, both on and off the Island. Visiting speakers include musicians from the UK, along with local talent across a number of musical genres. Our aim is to promote a sense of community and team work, with a shared goal and foster feelings of pride, joy and achievement at its fruition.
Each year the school stages a major whole school production, which allows students of all ages to work on a dramatic play or musical where they are able to act, paint, design, operate, perform and work as a team. Productions have included The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe, Sweeney Todd, Macbeth and Mary Poppins. The House Drama Festival is an annual tradition which takes place in the autumn term and is the culmination of seven weeks of rehearsals of student-driven productions. Catch-up drama sessions are held throughout the year to enable pupils to gain further support with coursework or practical tasks, and as IB Theatre and (I)GCSE Drama is coursework based (with no terminal examinations), this proves fundamental in aiding final year groups.
The Manx Music Festival, also known as The Guild, takes place annually and there is the opportunity to enter for speech, drama and musical performance. We offer preparation for this competition. The annual Thomas Cranmer Competition is for young people interested in reading extracts from the Book of Common Prayer in public. Competitors are judged according to laid down criteria for their age group and winners of the intermediate and senior age categories are invited to represent the Isle of Man by competing in the national finals. Students also compete in the Jean Steel Rhetoric and Rotarians Public Speaking.
Departments offer clinics where students can catch up with classwork, prep, coursework and benefit from individual expertise. This includes English, Science, Geography, Languages, Drama, Music and Computer Science.
There are also a number of activities that students can join and learn something new or improve their existing skills. These clubs include Folk Group, Chess, History Club, Yarn Club, Jigsaw and Geology Club.
IT’S ALL ABOUT THE MONEY
Middle Fifth pupils take part in this one day seminar by Junior Achievement Isle of Man and JA-YE Europe to help them understand the importance of money management. It covers a broad range of finance topics, including tax and National Insurance contributions, how to manage a bank account, credit, how not to get into debt, understanding spending habits, consumer rights, identity theft and how not to fall victim to a scam.
LEARN TO EARN
Lower Fifth pupils take part in this one day programme by Junior Achievement Isle of Man and JA-YE Europe where business volunteers help pupils understand how education is key to their future success and happiness in work and life. In the programme students link their skills, interests and values to potential careers and gain an understanding of the soft skills valued by employers.
The Combined Cadet Force (CCF) at King William’s College was set up in 1909, as part of the Officer Training Corp (OTC) for Army Officers. It was one of the first four in Britain to train young men for the forces. This OTC unit later became the KWC CCF. Our contingent is privileged to have all three sections: Army, Royal Navy and Royal Air Force. Students can join the CCF from the Upper Fourth. The aim is to promote leadership, self-discipline and fun using a military syllabus, which includes vocational qualifications (BTEC), summer camps, sailing, flying, adventurous activities and training, and military competitions.
Participation in The Duke of Edinburgh’s Award is actively encouraged and is a voluntary, non-competitive programme of practical, cultural and adventurous activities. The completion of the Award is highly regarded by universities and employers alike, who see in the scheme a reflection of the interests, team attitudes and work ethic of the participants. King William’s College has had some of the highest completion rates in the UK and we are proud of the popularity of the Award. There are three levels within the Award: Bronze, Silver and Gold, with each level split into the four sections of volunteering, skills, physical recreation and expedition.
Each year a programme of lectures welcomes guest speakers to deliver talks to the entire Sixth Form.
The aim of the society is to encourage pupils to develop the skills of debating; research, discussion, persuasion, logical thought and expression of opinions.
The Model United Nations Security Council is a prestigious debating competition for students in the Lower Sixth, who enter in teams of two and represent a country on the UN Security Council. They speak about current issues and how the international community plans to tackle them in a mock UN style debate.
A light, spacious setting provides a calm learning environment where our Sixth Formers can feel relaxed and inspired. With more than 28,000 books and a wide stock of journals and magazines, the library fosters a culture where pupils are encouraged to read widely, research and study. Resources are carefully selected to support learning, thought and enquiry, as well as the wider demands of the IB. Whether it is to quickly check a fact, browse the latest fiction, find a quiet reading corner or meet a friend for a game of chess, a warm welcome awaits.