Room 4 is open at lunchtimes for all students. The activities alternate weekly.
Week 1 begins with chess lessons for those who wish to learn/improve their game. A special emphasis is placed on 1st Years during the initial weeks, especially the quieter, lonelier, more vulnerable students. SNAs, management, and supervising teachers help to identify such students by observing grouping patterns in the canteen and corridors during break periods.
In previous years the chess has been only for 1st Year students (for the above reasons). However this year it has been opened to all students. This has worked really well, and a great atmosphere has developed between the boys from different year groups. The average number of pupils in the room during chess weeks is 30.
Recently the school purchased nine new chess sets as the demand for them outstripped our supplies. The school has also put in an extra cabinet to hold chess sets/board games.
Classic Video Games
On alternate weeks the room is used to host a classic arcade games competition. Each week a different game is played. Students write their names on a list and play in order. They have one life each. The high scores are rewarded. The school purchased a classic Atari joystick for the competition. The game is projected onto the main whiteboard. A weekly and an overall leaderboard is displayed outside Room 4. An overall prize will be sought from school funds for the winner at the end of the year. Games so far have been Pacman, Space Invaders, Galaga and Burgertime.
This has been a very successful innovation. It brings a wide cross-section of the school into Room 4. The emphasis is on fun and relaxation. Other boys still come into the room to play chess during video game weeks but game-playing is not allowed during chess weeks. The average number of pupils in the room during these weeks is 47.
Room 4 is open every day of the school year and is fully supervised.
Students are not permitted to do homework in Room 4 during lunch as the focus is firmly on fun, friendliness and relaxation.
While it can be noisy (particularly if someone is close to beating a high score during video game week), it is never rowdy. Boys are expected to respect each other, which they do. They also clean up after themselves.