Coronation Hats in Pre Prep
Today began with the Pre Prep children arriving at school wearing beautiful crowns and hats in anticipation of tomorrow’s ‘big event’. This was followed later in the day by a special coronation parade in the playground. We also held our Coronation assembly, giving our whole school community the opportunity to look forward to tomorrow’s Coronation of King Charles III at Westminster Abbey.
During this event, the whole school joined together to perform a memorable rendition of Handel’s ‘Zadok the Priest’, an anthem composed originally for the coronation of King George II in 1727. This group performance was the result of many rehearsals and perhaps some of you will have heard a preview as your children practised this at home.
Foundation Local Area Walk
Foundation enjoyed a delightful walk in the sunshine on Thursday morning. Their route took them along Trumpington Road where they posted congratulatory cards to King Charles, before heading along Vicar’s Brook to take in the sights, sounds and smells of spring. A range of footprints were studied, with suggestions as to their identity including fairies, bears, or even dinosaurs. Amongst the spring flowers spotted, colourful tulips, bluebells and daisies were all seen in abundance. The children also used their recent learning about teen numbers to read house numbers (1 ten and 9 more, that’s 19!) and counted ladybirds sunbathing on a wall. Back to school in time for a well–deserved snack, the children are now letting the Post Office do their job with their precious envelopes!
University Botanic Garden Visit
The Year 8 Art & Design Group pupils have also been exploring the local area this week. They visited The University Botanic Garden on Tuesday afternoon. This trip provided a fascinating opportunity for the group to view the ‘International Garden Photographer of the Year Exhibition’. Our pupils were then inspired to explore shared themes, working with iPads and digital photography. The pupils toured the garden and glasshouses, with great interest in the wide variety of shapes, sizes, colours and textures on display. The Year 8 pupils then focused for an hour on creating their own digital photography, which will be used as a stimulus for their botanical pen and ink studies next week.
Deaf Awareness Week
This week is Deaf Awareness Week. In our Year 3 & 4 assembly on Tuesday the children learned about what deafness means and how they can help to make communication with a deaf person easier. The pupils learned that there are at least four different degrees of hearing loss, from mild to very profound. The children diligently built upon what they had learned about British Sign Language (BSL) before Christmas and were able to practise how to ‘sign’ their own names.
The Year 8 children have also been learning some sign language and our Year 8 buddies have had the opportunity to share this experience at breaktimes with the younger children.
New Arrivals in Pre Prep
In last week’s newsletter, we celebrated the arrival of nine beautiful baby ducklings. On Tuesday, the Foundation pupils were able to watch them take their first swim. As promised, we are delighted to share footage of this exciting moment with you on the button below. Many imaginative suggestions for names have also been forthcoming and we are pleased to announce that names have now been selected. We have ‘Snow’, ‘White’ and no doubt you will be able to work out the names of the remaining seven!
Oakham School Piano Day
Three Year 5 pupils were fortunate enough to be invited to Oakham School’s Piano Day on Thursday. After a brief introduction in their Smallbone Library, pupils were divided into smaller groups and introduced to the Music department. They enjoyed a wonderful improvising session run by Harry the Piano, one of the world’s most gifted improvising pianists. Pupils were taught techniques for improvising and then, with Harry, improvised together. Oakham School’s Music department ran some fantastic sessions on composition in their composition suite using computers, performance of individual pieces and also duet work with pupils from other schools. After a delicious lunch and an afternoon of music, pupils performed their pieces in a concert in Oakham School’s chapel. There was a mixture of solo performances, duets, improvised pieces alongside Harry the Piano, as well as the Director of Music and Head of Piano performing the pupils’ compositions. The pupils enjoyed a thoroughly enjoyable and enriching day. Thank you to Mr Gorick for arranging it and to Oakham School for hosting us.
National Quiz Club General Knowledge Championship
On Thursday morning four of our pupils took part in a semi-final of the National Quiz Club General Knowledge Championship. The event was open to pupils in Years 3-6 and our children competed online against 52 other schools. The pupils did very well to reach the semi-final, and although on this occasion they did not progress to the final, the team worked well together and scored more points as the quiz progressed. There will be another opportunity to take part next year.
Year 7 and 8 Rowing
In the lovely and long-anticipated spring sunshine, Years 7 and 8 rowers were able to take to the river during Games on Wednesday afternoon. Our novices were honing their skills in single sculls, refining their technique and focusing on balance before moving into the quad. Our more experienced squad were training in the coxed quad, developing their timing and starting to work on sprint technique. The rowers are looking forward to visiting King’s Ely School, when they will experience a training session in a different environment, and with the added excitement of being able to go out in an octuple (8 scullers in one boat!). Back at school, our land-based training sessions enable the rowers to build their strength and stamina on the rowing machines.
St Faith’s Athletics Meeting for U10 – U14 Boys & Girls
Yesterday, in rather warmer conditions, approximately 100 St Faith’s athletes were out in force to mark the official beginning of the athletics season. The children were raring to go in their first match of the season and spirits were high. We welcomed teams, and their families, from 6 local schools to this annual derby which included, Perse Prep, The Perse, St Mary’s, St John’s and Stephen Perse. Traditionally this is a track only event offering opportunities for schools to try out their hurdlers, sprinters, middle distance runners and relay teams. St Faith’s emerged victorious in both age groups winning the U10- U12 competition by only 7 points. Please click on the button below for more results.
The Summer Rose Gymnastics Competition
On Thursday, 13 girls from Years 3-5 travelled to Maltman’s Green school in Gerrard’s Cross to compete in a friendly competition known as The Summer Rose Competition. The girls performed with confidence and style and felt really pleased with their success. Notable for their podium places were Daisy R. who finished joint 3rd in the U9 category, Honor S. who finished joint 3rd in U10, Elise T who finished joint 2nd in U10 and Ella H who finished joint 3rd in U11. Everyone was presented with a pen in the shape of a rose as a momento of the event. We look forward to returning for a re-match next year.
St Faith’s Parents’ Association (SFPA) Coffee Mornings
The final two coffee mornings for the summer term took place this week, with parents of Years 5 & 6 and Years 1 & 2 gathering in Tom’s Garden on Tuesday and Thursday respectively. It was lovely to see so many of our families enjoying breakfast together and then our parents staying on to mingle with one another over coffee and pastry. We were reminded by Mrs Moses, the Chair of the SFPA, that there are several events to look forward to before the end of the summer term, including the International Day event on Friday, 26th May just before we break for half-term. In addition, there is also the ever-popular annual Summer Party being held this year on Saturday, 17th June. Ticket sales are about to close, so please do check the SFPA website (accessible via ‘My School Portal’) or speak to your class representative.
St Faith’s Performing Arts Feature in ‘Cambridge Edition’
We are delighted to report that this month, St Faith’s Performing Arts curriculum has featured in the monthly ‘Cambridge Edition’, as part of an education feature ‘Bringing Down The House’. The feature comments that:
“The goal is to encourage pupils to follow their interests. At St Faith’s, for example – which boasts 19 different ensembles – two pupils are currently learning the bagpipes and one is studying the harp, with lunchtime concerts providing informal, confidence-boosting showcases for their musical talents”. You can read the full article here.
For those of you who will be watching the coronation service this weekend, I do hope that you enjoy this historic occasion. Whether you are travelling to London, watching the events on television, or simply appreciating the great outdoors, I wish you all a relaxing and peaceful Coronation Bank Holiday weekend.
I look forward to the pupils returning to school on Tuesday.
With all best wishes,
Dr Crispin Hyde-Dunn