A question I am often asked at this time of the year, usually by friends who are not involved in a school community, is, ‘Are you winding down?’ I usually take a big deep breath to collect myself before explaining that, as St Faith’s parents know only too well, the pace of school life increases as term progresses. At this stage, events come thick and fast and this week has been no exception, despite the ongoing national Covid safety measures with which we need to work. It’s been a busy week, as this newsletter shows, and I have really enjoyed seeing the children taking part in the many activities that we used to take for granted and have recently returned to our calendar. The St Faith’s buzz has well and truly returned and as I write this message, all I can hear from my office are the shrieks of laughter as children play on school house field.
There was a tangible feel-good factor on Tuesday lunchtime, when our garden hosted an impromptu music concert in which Year 8s entertained Years 3 and 4, as part of their weekly assembly. The sun was shining, the quality of music terrific (including a highly appropriate ‘Here Comes the Sun’ by Ollie on the drums) and a most uplifting and memorable half an hour was had for the many pupils and staff present.
Bentley Balloon Results
We have now received the results of the Bentley virtual balloon race. The balloons were ‘released’ from Westminster Abbey to see how far they would fly according to computer modelling, all with the purpose of raising funds for Cambridge Aid, a local charity helping local people in financial crisis. The St Faith’s balloon that travelled the furthest, an impressive 57.85km, belonged to Sam in Year 2. Sam, and 19 other pupils, have each been presented with a delicious hamper of food, courtesy of Chartwells, our catering supplier. Thank you to everyone who took part. In total £870 was raised for Cambridge Aid.
National Maths Challenge
This week, the advanced rounds of the Junior Maths Challenge were held. On Tuesday, Archie, Henry and Ryan, who scored exceptionally well in the first round, competed in the Olympiad, the highest level of the competition. On Wednesday, pupils from Years 6, 7 and 8 who had qualified for the Kangaroo round of the competition were put through their paces. I am sure all pupils did themselves proud and we look forward to hearing their results in due course.
General Knowledge Final
Year 3 Quiz Team members were in action yesterday in the Hive as they pitted their General Knowledge skills in the National Final of the Quiz Club Challenge, having qualified through the regional round earlier this term. When I called in, they were answering the question, ‘Fought during World War 1 in 1916, in which battle was the tank first used?’ The next one was ‘What is the chemical symbol for the element in diamond?’ I am sure you agree these are challenging questions for 7 and 8 year olds. Nevertheless, our team answered both of these tricky questions correctly and performed admirably overall, finishing in 14th place. Very well done to Emily, Owen, Chenrui and Nathaniel for representing St Faith’s so well.
Year 7 Extended Science Projects
This term, pupils in Year 7 have been exploring modern day items, researching the science behind them and looking at how innovation and technology have driven their evolution. From steam engines to electric cars, telephone exchanges to smart phones and hairdryers to ovens, Year 7s have demonstrated an appreciation of how far science has driven the evolution of items we take for granted every day. Mrs Price, Head of Science, was delighted with the quality of the work presented, and was particularly impressed with how the children embraced the concept of peer review during this extended project.
Drama and Music Exams
Today, 32 pupils from Years 3 to 8 are taking part in New Era Academy Speech and Drama exams. Under the expert tutelage of Miss Tucker, our Speech and Drama teacher, the children have been working towards exams in Verse and Prose, Acting, Mime, Shakespeare and Public Speaking. I wish everyone taking part the very best of luck and look forward to hearing their results.
Next week, 70 pupils will be taking their ABRSM music exams. From those taking their first Grade 1 exam to older pupils sitting Grade 7, the exams are important milestones in their musical development. I wish them all every success.
I am sure that many of you share our disappointment that today’s sports fixtures had to be cancelled owing to the inclement weather. After such a long dry spell, how unfortunate that the rain arrived on the day that so many children were looking forward to playing in an inter-school fixture. We did manage to hold some matches earlier in the week and our U13 gymnasts were also in action in their final virtual competition against Cranford House school. Here is a glimpse of our Year 7 pupils refining their vault skills, as ever under the watchful eye of Mrs North.
Singing teacher, Mr Lepage, has been working with his pupils over the past term to record and produce a music video based on the song ‘Shallow’ from the movie ‘A Star is Born’. With vocals recorded individually in school and visuals taken at home, the combined production is a showcase of what can be achieved even in these challenging times. Thank you to Mr Lepage and his Wyvern Voices for this charming video.
With all good wishes,