This week at St Faith's

16th June 2023

Year 8 ‘Buddies’ 

As part of an increasing level of responsibility the older pupils exercise as they move through the school, they very much enjoy helping and mentoring the younger children through lots of different activities. This week the Year 8 pupils have been reading with children in Foundation. Meanwhile, in House groups on Monday, the Year 8 pupils led a variety of outdoor activities for the younger pupils the Years 3 and 4. It was a very active and happy occasion.

Bold Voices 

On Tuesday, education leaders from the organisation ‘Bold Voices’ spoke to the Year 8 pupils and led interactive workshops. During the talk, our Year 8 pupils were asked to consider what gender inequality looks like in the world today and to think about the connections between attitudes, stereotypes, and sexual harassment. In the ensuing workshops, the pupils worked in small groups, building a ‘pyramid’ of gender inequality. They mapped out how different forms of gender equality (such as gender stereotypes, language and attitudes towards girls and women) are related and can lead to sexual harassment. The pupils were encouraged to consider how they can challenge these behaviours and attitudes both individually and as a school community. 

Musical links with Jesus College

Congratulations to one of our Year 5 pupils who has been promoted to Junior Chorister in the choir of Jesus College, Cambridge. This is in recognition of his progress as a Senior probationer. Jesus College Choir supports a number of St Faith’s boys as choristers. Congratulations are also in order for one of our Year 6 pupils who was awarded the coveted Anderson Cup for his progress in music theory, taught by the musicians of Jesus College. There is great benefit to a pupil’s musicianship from being a chorister, with the opportunity to sing with skilled musicians and to take part in chapel services, concerts and tours and recordings. With a choristership, financial assistance can also be available for instrumental tuition and many choristers achieve music awards and scholarships to their senior schools.

Should any parent be interested in finding out more about their son (Jesus College, Cambridge) or daughter (St Catharine’s College, Cambridge) becoming a chorister, please do not hesitate to contact Mr Gorick. The colleges are particularly keen to receive applications from pupils in Years 3-4. Please note St Catharine’s College Choir are holding auditions for girls on 9th July 2023. 



Continuing with a musical theme, on Monday we look forward to an evening of fine music, as the pupils will be performing in our Summer Music Concert in the University’s West Road Concert Hall.  

Foundation Music Open Class 

The three Foundation classes were very excited for their Music lessons today as they had some special visitors. Lots of parents came to share their learning. First the children chugged into the Britten Room being Engine Number 9 coming down the St Faith’s line, before choosing a percussion instruments to retell the story of Goldilcoaks and the Three Bears. There were big snare drums to be Daddy bears, claves to be Mummy bears, Triangles to be baby bears and glockenspiels to be Goldilocks. Then the children used Dalcroze Eurhythmic to be bunnies, listening carefully to the music to tell them what to do. Lots of fun was had by all, including one child who went back to class and declared it the best day ever!

Lessons this Week

Year 3 have been exploring ceramics this term in Art. The pupils were very proud of their clay tiles, inspired by Gustav Klimt’s ‘Tree of Life’. Meanwhile pupils in Year 4 have been using iPads and QR codes to discover facts about invertebrates. For example did you know that jellyfish have hydrostatic skeletons (a type of flexible skeleton supported by fluid pressure)? Another Year 4 class have been learning about features of a church such as the altar, pulpit and lectern ahead of their forthcoming visit to Little St Mary’s Church. Staying on the topic of religion, pupils in Year 6 have been evaluating the success of the Elizabethan Church during the later Reformation. For pupils in Year 7, in their Engineering lesson, they have been focused upon Bernoulli’s Principle in relation to lift, as they prepare to make their own boomerangs, which will hopefully fly and come back to them! Finally, pupils in Year 8 have used their newly acquired skills speaking Russian from their language carousel to engage in some conversation – a feat which is all the more impressive after just three lessons.  

Speech and Drama Tea-time Recital

On Tuesday, pupils from Years 3-8 performed in the last Speech and Drama recital for this year in front of an audience of proud and supportive parents. We were treated to readings from ‘The Hundred Mile an Hour Dog’ and ‘Frost Hollow Hall’, a devised scene, a scene from ‘A Midsummer Night’s Dream’ and numerous poems and acting scenes. Pupils taking part, some of whom only started this term, were keen to share their work as were those pupils who took their exams yesterday and those taking their exams next Friday. We wish them all the best of luck.

Road Safety Day 

On Wednesday morning the School Council and Eco-Committee held their last Road Safety Day for this academic year. Pupils stationed just inside the school gate tallied the number of pupils who cycled to school wearing helmets and found that almost all pupils who cycled to school also wore a protective cycle helmet. Pupils on the path of Trumpington Road were highlighting the cycling restrictions on the path outside of the school. Elsewhere pupils on Newton Road were promoting the speed limit of 20mph. It was a really worthwhile and important session. 

Summer Book Fair 

This week the library became a mini bookshop as we celebrated the return of our annual Summer Book Fair. Pupils have been enjoying the new books on offer, discussing with their friends (and parents!) what they should buy and making some tough decisions in order to stick to their individual budgets. Thank you to you all for your support of this final library event of the academic year. All commission raised from the sale of these books will be shared with local primary schools in September, and our Year 8 Pupil Librarians will assist with the purchase of books to replenish their classroom libraries. 

Model Seeds 

Year 5 have been studying seed dispersal in their recent Biology topic, ‘Life Processes’. Having learnt about different methods of dispersal and how seeds are adapted for each, Year 5 were set the challenge to design and construct a model seed for their chosen method of dispersal. Pupils then presented their model to their peer group with older pupils also admiring the models now on display in the Labs and The Hub. As you can see from the selection of photographs below, the model seeds are truly outstanding. Thank you to Year 5 parents for your support in gathering resources to make these superb structures.  

Year 8 Poetry

Last week, Year 8 pupils were given a selection of photographs to look at from the National Geographic 2006 competition. Each pupil could interpret the photograph in any poetic style and every child connected with the photographic stimulus they chose. There was a rich variety of topics, and a range of sentiments were demonstrated. A few young poets chose to use rhyme, whilst others chose to delve deep into metaphors. We hope that you enjoy this selection of verse inspired by the photographs.


Foundation 2023 Familiarisation Visits

This week it has been a real pleasure to welcome back our new Foundation 2023 families for their second familiarisation visits. The time since their first visits in May seems to have quickly passed. As the Early Years staff continued to get to know the new children, parents were also able to meet with one another over refreshments in Tom’s Garden. 

Old Fidelian (OF) Tennis and Netball Evening 

On a fine summer’s evening on Tuesday, the inaugural OF Netball event took place at the Latham Road sports ground, joining the ever popular OF Tennis event. Both these events were mixed gender and regarding the OF Netball, Miss Wacey reports the following: “We had a triangular netball tournament with The OF team, The Staff team and The Parent team. Congratulations to The OF netball team that were unbeaten and won both their games, and parents pipped the staff to the post for second place! Thank you to our two Year 8 umpires for ensuring fair play and thank you to Mrs Biggs and Mrs Bond for organising the parent team and to Mr Nichols for organising the OF team. There truly was a great atmosphere, a good standard of netball played, and fun had by all!” 

Thank you to everyone who came to spectate and support the event, as well as the staff, OF pupils and parents who played in the matches. Congratulations to Mr Rayner and Mr Potton, who were the winners of the OF v parents’ tennis competition. We look forward to these events taking place again next year.

Sports Pursuits

Friday has seen our pupils in Years 3 to 8 inclusive taking part in our school Sports Day. Making use of the University of Cambridge’s excellent track and field facilities at Wilberforce Road, a further report of this key event in the school calendar will follow.   

U12-U14 Boys’ and Girls’ East Area Athletics

Last Friday, some of our athletes travelled to Bedford for the East Area Athletics competition.
Mr North writes “There is nothing better for me than seeing the red, black and white St Faith’s vests running, jumping and throwing and they were a credit to themselves and school. 42 athletes represented the school against 50 other participating schools from 7 different counties. In the U12 boys’ discus event, a new area record, as well as a new school record were set. For the U13 girls’, there were new school records in both discus and relay and in the U14 girls’ category, a new area record was achieved in discus. Throughout the day, there were many fantastic results, including a plethora of Season’s Bests for our pupils. Well done to all of them. 

15 pupils covering 17 events qualified for the National finals which will take place at Nuneaton on 3rd July. From such a large field, that is no mean feat. Many congratulations to all of them. 

In addition, our helpers were incredible ambassadors for the school and several staff from other schools commented on how thoughtful and responsible they were. I would also like to thank the many staff who prepared the children for the event and on the day itself”. 

13 Girls’ Cricket National Cup

On Monday the U13 Girls’ Cricket Team played in the IAPS Cricket National Cup Knock-Out quarter-finals. A highly impressive all round display secured victory, and our U13 Girls’ team has now qualified for the final. Many congratulations to all the pupils involved for reaching the final of the National Cup, which is a tremendous achievement, and we wish them all the best in the final itself.   

May I take this opportunity to wish all our pupils who are taking part in the IAPS National Tennis Finals and the Cambridge Chess Megafinal this weekend, the very best of luck.

And Finally…

Tomorrow, the highly anticipated SFPA Summer Party takes place at the Graduate Hotel, with its fine riverside setting. We are forecast a warm sunny evening for this sell-out gathering, and with punting, live music and a delicious buffet to enjoy, it promises to be a memorable and happy occasion – I very much look forward to seeing you there. 

With all best wishes,

Dr Crispin Hyde-Dunn