The pace, rather than winding down for Christmas, has picked up with a very busy week full of the festive spirit.
On Monday, we were delighted to welcome the esteemed Theatre in Education Company ‘Tiny Giants’ to perform A Christmas Carol to Year 8. Students were presented with an hour-long show of festive mayhem as Scrooge is taken on his ethical journey and transforms from a penny-pinching miser to the life and soul of the Christmas season! With just three talented actors, ‘Tiny Giants’ retold Charles Dickens’ classic with theatrical skill and humour. We asked students for some feedback: “It was one of the best shows I’ve ever seen. It was mind-blowing because there were only three people”; “It was great, I liked Scrooge because he was really funny” and “Really enjoyed the performance!!! Great actors. Funny, well performed I wish I could see it again”. Great fun was had by all: a magical treat, which complimented the English scheme of learning, for our hard-working students at the end of a long-term.
Other highlights of this week have undoubtedly been the Carol Service at St John’s and Chesterton’s Got Talent; both hugely enjoyable events.
Holding the Carol Service at St John’s made a huge difference to the event, providing us with space to accommodate an ever growing audience. It is a very impressive location and the student performances were a match for the venue with an array of great vocal and instrumental performances.
Many performers from the Carol Service were also performing, in different guises, in Chesterton’s Got Talent. It was an incredibly varied evening with a virtuoso on the Rubik’s Cube, to talented vocalists and singer songwriters through to the winning performers of “Green Eggs and Ham”. The winners created a superb physical theatre staging of the Dr Seuss favourite, which would not have been out of place in a professional setting. The performers were collectively: “Solla Sollew”, a company consisting of Year 9 students – Sofia Stickley, Ben Rowland, Josh Bailey, Eve Werdmuller, Danny Evetts and Rosie Green.
Runner Up was Jed Upjohn, Year 7, with his vocal and piano performance; who incidentally also sang the solo for “Once in Royal David’s City” at the Carol Service!
Year 11 students experienced an early taste of what it will be like in the summer when they receive their GCSE results. We created the experience for students by running a full mock-up of the day with students opening their envelopes and experiencing what it will be like in August. We do this so students can envision what they want the reality of the summer to be in a safe environment and consider what they still need to do in the coming months to be successful.
The annual staff versus year 11 basketball match took place yesterday. Unusually, the staff team managed to win! – 33-21
Congratulations to CJ Barrie (year 7) – he was recently selected to be part of a scheme to develop talented young cricketers. He will have the opportunity to receive high quality coaching via the national initiative – The England cricket team needs him!
The Autumn Term has seen great uses of technology to support learning including using coding installations and Minecraft in Art; iPads providing access to revision resources and tools in Year 11; Raspberry Pi’s in Computing and students making their own GPS systems. To ensure parents can feel confident about all the different uses, there is a parent support session on Monday January 5th between 10am – 2pm in the library for any IT support or queries. By the end of term we will have completed all the iPad updates.
We will be launching a community and alumni section of the website in early January so watch this space!
When we return it is to the excitement of the Options’ process for Year 9. Please look out for events in January and the new option booklet on the website.
On Friday 12 th December the art department hosted a fantastic Blockbuilders digital design workshop. 15 students worked with public artist Zoe Chamberlain and Joe and Megan from Blockbuilders to create designs for public art within the housing development at the former Cambridge united football ground site. Blockbuilders provided laptops for all the students with the architects designs loaded into an educational version of minecraft. This allowed students to build their designs using techniques they were all familiar with. Students started the day listening to Zoe explain her role and their brief, to design interactive public art inspired by the sites former use as a football stadium. Students sketched out ideas then worked in teams to realise their designs digitally. At the end of the day students presented their designs to representatives from the developers Crest Nicholson and the City Council planning department. These representatives were “bowled over by the students’ enthusiasm and innovative ideas”. Students have also been invited by the developers to visit the site once building is underway to see the designs being realised.
It just remains for me to wish you all a happy and peaceful break. We look forward to welcoming everyone back on January 6th.