This week at St Faith's

29th April 2022

The pupils are really enjoying all the opportunities afforded by the summer term. We began the week with an assembly on the theme of ‘Being yourself’. Inspiration was drawn from the uplifting book ‘Perfectly Norman’ by Tom Percival. As well as reminding us that we are all individuals, the assembly also allowed us to reflect on the importance of tolerance and self-acceptance.

Primary Maths Challenge Certificates

In the assembly on Monday I was delighted to present to Year 6 pupils their Primary Maths Challenge Bonus Round certificates. To be invited to compete in the Bonus Round is a fantastic achievement, and we are extremely proud of the pupils’ achievements.

Virtual Reality and Salvador Dali

This week, the Year 8 Art Group has found inspiration in Salvador Dali’s surreal paintings to create their own piece of artistry. The pupils were able to use a 3D imaging program based on one of Salvador Dali’s most prestigious pieces of artwork: ‘The Elephants’ from 1948. With virtual headsets on, pupils dived deep into Dali’s artwork, encountering something of the surreal world of his imagination.

The virtual reality experience was key to the success of the art projects, leading pupils to a greater understanding of Dali’s world and work. VR also brought to life more of Dali’s paintings in a fully immersive way. The whole class really enjoyed this project, as it was a new and different way of learning about an artist’s most famous paintings.

Buddhism and Christianity

Some of the Year 8 classes have been completing their studies in Buddhism and Christianity with Question and Answer sessions. Via MS Teams they have welcomed virtual visitors from the Cambridge Buddhist Centre. Through interaction with our visitors, the children were able to understand more fully the symbolism of the Tibetan Thangka, a painting which they have been studying. The pupils were keen to learn more about what it means to be enlightened, and why some Buddhists choose to live a very disciplined life.

We also welcomed the Reverend Chris Lowe, vicar of St John’s Church in Orchard Park, Cambridge. The pupils’ thoughtful questions covered a huge range of subjects from miracles to science, to the reliability of the Bible and issues of identity. All were expertly answered and discussed by Reverend Lowe.

In the Classrooms

As well as taking part in a range of summer activities and sports, the pupils have continued to work hard in their lessons. Year 7 pupils have already begun their modern foreign language assessments and are preparing for further exams. Year 6 pupils have been considering the engineering of bridges, as well as studying symmetry in Maths, and exploring the Wars of the Roses and the life of Henry VII in Humanities. Meanwhile I joined Year 3 pupils in the library this week as they spent time carefully selecting their next ‘class reader’ book – with the front runner having a distinct robot theme.

Fun with the Aztecs

Last term, Year 6 completed an independent project based on their History topic. Pupils produced either an informative poster about one aspect of Aztec life, or a board game based on the Spanish exploration and conquest of the Americas. The submissions were very varied, showing impressive creativity and careful planning, from a Columbus-themed Twister, to “Anchors and Rigging”, a variation on Snakes and Ladders. Pupils really enjoyed playing their board games with their peers and sharing their eye-catching posters.

Junior Soloists’ Music Festival

On Thursday it was a privilege to join an audience of parents to see some of our younger musicians performing solos. An inspiring selection of pieces and a wide range of instruments being played, made for a truly memorable morning. While the festival was not a competition, the mastery of musicianship was immediately evident and I should like to congratulate all the performers upon the wonderful quality of their recitals.

Inter-House Badminton

This week was the first time the Year 8s had been involved in an inter-house Badminton competition. The matches were played in an excellent spirt and to round off a fine event, in true Fidelian style, team captains awarded prizes for ‘Most Valued Player’ and ‘Best Team Player’. Chaucer House emerged as the eventual winner, but there were some extremely close and keenly contested games.  A full report of the event is available here.

Table Tennis – National Champion Runner Up

Last Saturday, six pupils represented St Faith’s at the Table Tennis IAPS Nationals at Edge Grove School. This is a new venture for our school and the pupils have really enjoyed exploring this popular sport. The competition was of a very high standard, with up to 60 children competing per age group from different schools. Our pupils represented St Faith’s with great distinction and all played some inspired Table Tennis throughout the day, and enjoyed the experience. One of our pupils progressed all the way to the final of this national competition and was an extremely valiant runner-up. Thank you to everyone who took part and for the generous support from parents on the day.  Further details can be found on this link.

Old Fidelian Committee Meeting

It was a real pleasure to attend the first face-to-face meeting of the Old Fidelian (OF) Committee in almost two years, which took place at school on Tuesday evening. The majority of committee members were able to attend, and it was clear that our OF community are already looking forward to the events planned for the summer term, including golf, tennis and chess matches. The ever popular OF BBQ will take place on Friday, 16th September, so please do save the date if you know any OFs who would like to attend. The Committee would also like to hear from any current parents who are also OFs and may be interested in joining the Committee. Please email marketing@stfaiths.co.uk for more information.

SFPA Easter Egg Hunt

The long awaited, and greatly anticipated, St Faith’s Parents’ Association Easter Egg Hunt took place on Saturday.  More than 100 families of children from Reception to Year 4 were kept very busy searching for some wonderful chocolate surprises.

As well as the first ‘in person’ meeting of the SFPA at school on Monday evening, the SFPA also hosted another Coffee Morning on Thursday – this time it was the turn of Year 7 parents to join us in Tom’s Garden. I am delighted that the Coffee Mornings are proving to be so popular as we continue to re-connect our community following more than 2 years of pandemic restrictions.

And Finally …..

This week, you will have recently received an invitation to take part in a survey relating to your experiences of life for St Faith’s parents and pupils.  As we emerge from the pandemic and look to shape the exciting future of our school, your voices are crucially important. I am most grateful for your engagement with the survey, which is being administered on the school’s behalf by RSAcademics, to enable full anonymity. Thank you in advance for your participation.

Wishing you all a peaceful and relaxing Bank Holiday weekend,

With all best wishes,

Dr Crispin Hyde-Dunn