Nothampton High School
High News

Friday 12 February 2021

An afternoon without screens has hopefully been an enjoyable change in routine and offered a valuable opportunity for all of our pupils and staff to do something a bit different. We hope you have enjoyed taking part in some interesting activities and we look forward to hearing about what you decided to do (and seeing your photos!) after half term.

Please don’t forget that GDST Get Active is still running throughout half term to the end of February, so please continue to log your exercise and help Northampton High climb the leader board! We look forward to spending some time outside next week, and really getting active and away from the screens.

Wishing you and your families a lovely break, with some well-earned rest as well as lots of physical activity!

This week in Nursery...

We started the week in Nursery by exploring the dusting of snow in the garden, making different patterns in the snow with our welly boots; “Look at my feet”, Natalie said, as she made foot prints.

The girls also explored what happened when they rode the bikes through the snow, leaving trails and clumps of snow from the wheels.

In PE, we explored different movements to music and used beanbags to balance them on different parts of our body. During the week, we have been celebrating Chinese New Year, tasting some Chinese snacks, making fans and dragon masks, trying out some Chinese writing and exploring noodles in the messy area. There was lots of excitement coming to Nursery in our Pyjamas too, and we enjoyed stories snuggled under our blankets.

Please could we ask you only put water in the girls’ bottles when coming to Nursery? Many thanks.

Mrs Bing
Nursery Manager

This week in Pre School...

This week in Pre School we have been celebrating Chinese New Year. The girls have had the opportunity to create Chinese writing, they watched a video about how some children celebrate Chinese New Year and had a variety of Chinese snacks; the prawn crackers were liked the best. We danced to Chinese music and the girls pretended they were dragons. We then set up a provocation of red, yellow and pink paper, tissue paper, lollipop sticks, googly eyes, pompoms and sequins, as we looked at Chinese dragons and the girls created their own versions.

When the girls were reflecting on what they had learnt they said:
“It’s a celebration”. Emily
“I like the pink one”. Yana
“They decorate”. Bonetta
“They wear new clothes”. Maya

The Maths games we have had on our interactive white board are proving really popular with the children; they have been ordering, matching and counting the different items and can choose between the teddy bears, under the sea and the ladybird themes. The girls are doing really well at completing the games. Well done, girls!

You could share this experience at home with your daughter by getting her to show you her mathematical skills by completing some programmes from Topmarks.

We got the chance to play in the snow again, which was fun; having snowball fights and talking about our different sized footprints. “Yours is bigger than mine”,  Aleya said to one of the practitioners.

Mrs Bing
Nursery Manager

This week in Reception...

This week in Reception, students have been focusing on the traditional tale ‘The Elves and the Shoe Maker’. On Tuesday, the girls spent time designing shoes and making a list of resources they may need.

We have also been focusing on positional language. The girls took it in turns to give each other instructions on where to put their bear. We also decided to see what would happen it we filled plastic containers with coloured water and toys and placed them outside for the night. Would the water change to ice?

We also had fun learning about Chinese New Year and our class made some fabulous dragon masks to celebrate this important time of year.


Years 1 & 2

This term has certainly been different for everyone, but in Key Stage 1, we have done our very best to keep our learning journey fun and engaging for all the girls, both at home and in school. As with every new term, we start a new topic; with a new topic comes our fantastic Topic WOW day and, despite working remotely from each other, this one was no different as we introduced our new topic, ‘Awesome Australia.’

The WOW day began with Miss Scott-Evans and Miss O’Mahony reporting live to their classes from Sydney Harbour, donning their cork hats to ward off any nuisance flies! We started our learning by watching a video all about this huge country, filling our brains with information all about the landscape, the wildlife and many famous landmarks. We then continued to learn even more by reading lots of interesting facts. The day was filled with various exciting activities including fact writing, packing a suitcase for a our imaginary trip to Australia, designing boomerangs, making Australian flags and some of the girls in school made some moving kangaroo puppets.

Since the WOW day, our Australian learning journey has continued. In English we have explored traditional Aboriginal Dreamtime stories and we even had a go at writing one of our own. We have also been practising our non-fiction writing learning about lots of different Australian animals, both on land and in the sea. We have created fact files and posters aplenty using our own creative skills on paper and on the computer. In Humanities, we have developed our understanding of the world’s seven continents, investigating a different one each week. We have learned so much! Did you know that Australia is the smallest continent and it’s also the driest inhabited continent of the world?

Our artwork has also been linked to our topic and lots of us have been busy completing many different tasks. Some of us have made and decorated our own didgeridoos, we have created some Aboriginal dot paintings and we have produced pictures of a range of Australian animals too.

Alongside this huge amount of super learning in our topic work, we have still fitted in all of our work for Maths, Science, French, PE, Forest School and Music too! It has been a busy first half of the term and when we come back after the break, we will continue with our ‘Awesome Australia’ topic and see what else our learning journey has in store for us!

See all photos

It has been great being able to speak to the girls at different points throughout each day, and our longer afternoon live calls often allow time for a game together. We have played so many different ones with some of the top favourites including: number, phonics and animal bingo, scavenger hunts, countdown, scattergories and drawing on our heads! It’s been so much fun and it has been wonderful to see the girls’ confidence grow on the calls, as it is an unusual way for us to be communicating together compared to what we are used to in School. In our PSHE sessions, we have been focusing on dreams and goals, but have also been reflecting on our feelings and how to ensure we are keeping our minds healthy, as well as our bodies.

All of the girls have worked extremely hard this half term and the regular contact with their teachers and friends has really helped to keep them focused and excited about their learning. A special thank you goes to Mrs Ramskill who has been supporting all of the KS1 girls in School and, of course, to all the parents at home for their support with home learning, enabling your daughters to join the calls throughout the day and for keeping them motivated.

Wishing you all a restful break and we look forward to seeing you all soon. Stay safe!

Miss Scott-Evans & Miss O’Mahony
Teachers of Years 1 & 2

This week in Year 3...

This week in Year 3, girls have been learning about healthy eating and whether foods are from animals or plants. This has also included discussion regarding proteins, carbohydrates, fruit and vegetables and dairy products. Well done girls!

Girls have once again worked exceptionally hard on all the Guided Home Learning tasks set this week. In Maths, we have looked at statistics and drawn and interpreted pictograms and bar charts. In English, we have started our new text, Black Dog by Levi Pinfold, and found that this dog keeps getting bigger and bigger as different people see it! I wonder what will happen next?

In Science, we have been designing a healthy meal, following lots of research into what our bodies need to grow and develop. The meals sounded delicious and made us all feel hungry.

We also had interesting discussions on Safer Internet Day about which things online we could trust, and what we should do if something appeared on our screens that we did not like or were unsure about. The girls were very sensible and all agreed that we should ask a trusted adult to help us.

I hope all the girls have a good half term break away from their screens and I look forward to hearing their news on 22 February.

Mrs Dadge
Class 3 Teacher

Year 3 and 4 GDST Junior Art Collaboration

Year 3 and 4 are very excited to be part of this project, collaborating with pupils from GDST schools in Newcastle, Sheffield, Streatham & Clapham and Howell’s in Cardiff.  The project launched this week with an exploration of the life and work of British contemporary artis,t Maggi Hambling.

Maggi loves to watch the sea and creates expressive seascapes and wave paintings. At the start of this week we used collected papers to create wave collages and ended the week responding in a more open-ended way to photographs of crashing waves.

Two pupils will be chosen to represent our school in a meeting after half term, where they can talk about their piece of work and experiences of the project and give feedback to pupils from other collaborating schools.

A highlight will be the opportunity to have work displayed digitally in an online GDST gallery. In the week after half term, we will be experimenting with optical illusions and looking at the work of artist Bridget Riley.

Risara: “It was fun cutting out the wave shapes”.

Avleen: “It was fun – now we are in lockdown and are not allowed to go to the seaside, it is lovely to think about the sea”.

Jessica: “It was fun because you had to imagine what was going to be in the picture”.

Mrs Purvey-Tyrer
Deputy Head Junior School

This week in Year 5...

Year 5 have had another fun and fabulous five days of Guided Home Learning. Last Friday the girls completed their second baking challenge and made some amazing treats for their families – iced buns, rainbow rolls, pizza, garlic bread, pesto bread, cheese and scallion bread. The girls worked really hard and the results looked delicious!

In their PE lesson this week, the girls were teaching each other to do different dance moves – Phoebe, Lottie, Darcy, Ellie and Sophie taught a range of positions, including sharp foot, demi point, pas de chat, arabesques, Greek positions and the grand Batmont Kick!

Mrs Littlewood was thrilled with the girls and said: “The whole group were so, so supportive of one another; they listened, tried the skills and learnt lots of new phrases.”

As I write, it is Thursday afternoon and the girls are chatting away on Teams as they create junk model boats to test water resistance and streamlining:

“My boat is going great. I did the idea of cutting the bottle in half but it was really tricky and we had to go outside and get my dad to do it with his saw”. Evelyn

“I‘ve made 3, but they didn’t all work. I started off with 3 materials and the first once sank straight away; the second one was ok and the 3rd one was great. Then me and Mummy went into the Lego box and found this from an aeroplane and it glided really well but went through the water not on top”. Lottie

“I had quite a few fails but eventually I got my boat to go on top of the water and not down. I used some paper to make it stronger and sponges, and also I put a little flag on”. Lucy

“I started by making the bottom of my boat and I’ve experimented to make sure that it floats. For my flag, for decoration, I’m going to put a few little pompoms on and an R. I haven’t tried my boat out yet so I’m not sure what will happen, but to make my boat more streamlined, I think I might have to make it a bit smoother”. Rianna

Mrs Brandon-Jones
Year 5 Class Teacher

Year 6 Student Round-Up

Despite the lockdown, we have had so many great experiences this year. Some of them include: ‘The Light It Up Workshop’ at the Royal Institute, a drama taster session with Mo in the Sixth Form, a live Zoom meeting with Ross Welford, the well-known children’s author and a Year 6 live Zoom meeting with our newly found ‘Big Sisters’ across the pond in California. 

Our live lessons have been so much fun and catching up with are friends makes life much easier than in the last lockdown. We are so lucky to have our teachers doing live lessons for us. Every time we come on to the call, we see everybody’s smiling faces and this brightens up our day. 

We have loved working on the International Collaboration Project with students from the Academy of Our Lady of Peace in San Diego. We created a ‘Living Library’ about ourselves, to share with the students and then met the girls who live thousands of miles away.  We loved hearing about their hobbies, and we hope they loved reading our Power Point presentations, where we shared lots of fun facts about ourselves and our interests. All the girls were so nice and supportive. They were also really enthusiastic about their interest or hobbies and we really enjoyed chatting to them in our break our rooms in California, where the sun was shining, and the palm trees were swaying in the gentle breeze! 

There have been lots of positive things about Guided Home Learning, including the GDST Light It Up Science Workshop which we all really enjoyed and there were activities included that everyone could do at home! Even on Zoom it worked brilliantly. It was so fun, bright, colourful and scientific all at the same time. 

Overall, it has been a fun term except for the occasional wifi issue! All of our friends have been very kind and supportive; we are all looking forward to coming back to School whenever that might be. These five weeks have made us think more carefully about the things we take for granted and have made us more independent in our learning. 

After half term we are really looking forward to celebrating World Book Day on  Friday 12 March, launching the Eco-Captains Poster Competition, the Magazine Editors’ Creative Writing Competition, the Music Captains’ House Music Competition and much, much more. 

Have a great half term! 

Anya, Elizabeth, Eloise and Emily
Year 6 House Captains 

Year 6 Sports Captains' Competition Winner!

We are delighted to announce that the winner of the Year 6 Sports Captains’ Competition is Zoe in Year 5!

We loved Zoe’s swimming pool cake entry, a truly effective and imaginative cake for which she will receive 2 House points!

Well done, Zoe!

Sophia, Frankie, Fern, Isla H and Daisy
Year 6 Sport Captains 

Junior School Achievements

Congratulations to Angelie in Year 3, who this week received her Blue Peter badge in the post!

Angelie, pictured opposite proudly wearing her award, received her Blue Peter Music badge for her charity performance where she learnt a rap and played the guitar, and we are so proud of her fantastic achievement. Well done, Angelie!

School achieves its fourth Eco-Schools Green Flag!

We are pleased to announce that Northampton High School has just passed its (online) Eco-Schools inspection and achieved our fourth Eco-Schools Green Flag!

Keep Britain Tidy (the awarding body) would like to take this opportunity to thank the school community for continuing to work on our Eco-Schools Green Flag during these unprecedented times, stating that “it is a true reflection of your school’s determination to make a real difference”.

The Senior School Eco Team continues to meet (now online during a Tuesday REC), and if you would like to be involved, please contact Mr Earp; we have exciting

plans for further environmental work in the future and we always welcome new members to join us.

The Junior School have from this year started their own Eco Team, having previously attended Senior School meetings; we would like to thank Isla M and Amelie B for their work as Year 6 Eco Prefects this year, and if you have any ideas for environmental action in the Junior School please let them know.

Mr Earp
Head of Humanities

Guided Home Learning from the Art Department

How do you teach Art from a laptop? That is a good question! The visualizer camera you can see in the photograph below helps as it allows you to create drawings, paintings and demonstrations of techniques to students. I have found it useful to show U4 classes how to tackle drawing lips and noses, paying attention to shapes of subtle shading as well as blending in tones from the outer edges of lips, to avoid the strong contour.

Working alongside girls has helped me to remember how it feels to be a student tackling a challenge. I have been setting myself deadlines for submissions too – reflecting,

correcting and assessing my own work, all of which are vital considerations when producing art. It has been great working with U3 on their pen and collage compositions, using trees, woodland and hedgerows as our inspiration.

The girls have freely shown their work in progress, with individuals typing praise comments in the chat or unmuting to contribute warmly to each other’s creations. We have brought along our novelty mugs, including unicorns, filled with a nice hot chocolate (or popcorn and a mug muffin on some occasions), which have helped fuel our creativity! I am so proud of what the girls have achieved and they should now be congratulating themselves on their positivity and adaptability during this period of GHL.

I am looking forward to getting back to the Art Department but for now – have a super half term everyone and I hope you all find time for your own creativity next week.

Mrs Beacroft
Head of Creative Arts Faculty

Students perform a monologue of Shakespeare's 'Seven Ages of Man'

As previously mentioned in a recent edition of School News, students have been working on Shakespeare monologues as a part of their Guided Home Learning.

The level of performance by the students has been fantastic, and we are delighted to share with you another monologue today, this time performed by Scarlett and Lexie.

Presenting ‘The Seven Ages of Man’, both Scarlett and Lexie have excelled, performing a delightfully imaginative piece with great creativity and use of their household props and costumes.

Please click here to view the video, we hope you enjoy.

Ms Heimfeld
Teacher of English and Film

U3 German students hold virtual fashion show using Bitmojis!

U3 students held their very own fashion show in their German lesson last week.

In the absence of a catwalk, students described their own Bitmoji in German and classmates had to match descriptions to the Bitmojis in their Google Classroom. Pictured below are the Bitmojis for U3W and U3L – well done, everyone!

Mrs Hill and Mrs Morgan
Languages Faculty

L4 German students complete presentations

For their final week of German before switching over to Spanish for the rest of the year, L4 students each took an aspect of the German-speaking world to research and present to the rest of their class. Below are four of their presentations. Well done, everyone!

Mrs Morgan
Languages Teacher

Making Crepes with Miss Orvoen!

In Year 6, we are currently studying a topic about cooking and recipes in French, and, with Tuesday being Pancake Day in France, this was a really exciting opportunity to make some crepes!

In this video, Miss Orvoen talks us through the whole process from start to finish in French, and needless to say, Year 6 loved this and enjoyed creating their own!

To view the recipe and the video for yourself, please click here. We would love to see your creations, so feel free to send us some pictures with your very own homemade crepes!

Mrs Morgan
Languages Teacher

6.1 Debate team take part in GDST competition

On Monday 8 February, the 6.1 Debate Team had the opportunity to take part in a competition with three other GDST schools – Bath, Howell’s and Shrewsbury.

Freya T, Zara and Sophie T-L formed Team 1, debating against Bath with the aptly topical title ‘This House believes that vaccinations should be made compulsory in the UK’, whilst Sarah and Korena K and I formed Team 2, facing Shrewsbury with the title ‘This House believes that democracy cannot truly exist in the modern age’, and Shrewsbury and Howell’s debated each other with the title ‘This House believes that the sale of human organs for profit should be legalized’.

This debate was hugely insightful and engaging, as we were able to interact with students from across the GDST with topical and interesting debates. We were joined by two judges from the Oxford Union and it was incredibly useful to hear their feedback, following the event. As there were three debates, we also had the opportunity to observe one another and this was thought-provoking, enabling us to ask questions to those debating.

The judges chose Howell’s as the winner with Northampton High Team 1 and Bath as runners up. Thank you to Mr Viesel for organising the event and thank you to the members of both teams for participating. We hope to engage in further debates as we head into the second half of term.

Jodie W
School Debate Team

GDST Creative Writing Prize on the theme of 'Belonging'

The GDST Creative Writing Prize always prompts a flurry of fabulous writing from High School girls. This year is no exception.

We saw a very wide-ranging response to the theme of ‘Belonging’, with some pieces set in imaginary future worlds, others reflecting on personal experiences, yet others taking an almost metaphysical approach to the topic. We are delighted to have chosen three wonderful pieces to be judged against other GDST schools’ entries by the author Rachel Hore.

The winning entries from Northampton High are by Himaya S (U3), Katie M (L5) and Ruby H (6.2). We wish them all success.

Mr Viesel
Teacher of English

Book Reviews

Such a Fun Age by Kiley Reid

Recommended for U4 and above –  When Emira is apprehended at a supermarket for ‘kidnapping’ the white child she’s actually babysitting, it sets off an explosive chain of events. Her employer Alix, a feminist blogger with the best of intentions, resolves to make things right.

But Emira herself is aimless, broke and wary of Alix’s desire to help. When a surprising connection emerges between the two women, it sends them on a crash course that will upend everything they think they know – about themselves, each other, and the messy dynamics of privilege.

Miss Buxton
School Librarian

'Backchat' Magazine update

It’s been an eventful start to the year and this half of term has been unusual, to say the least. Change has also come to Backchat, the school magazine, as we welcomed a new editorial team. The team have quickly established themselves and have begun work on a new edition of Backchat, with its theme being ‘CHANGE’. We have been writing submissions ourselves and gathering others from members of the student body.

We would love to hear from you and to include your work in this edition. Please contact us at as we welcome all contributions, which may be in any media.

As well as working on the magazine, the team has been busy updating the website Click here to see a number of different articles from exciting creative writing to an enlightening interview with Mr Donaldson. We have really enjoyed working as a team and are looking forward to publishing more in the future, so watch this space!

Sarah H and all the Backchat Editorial Team

Guided Home Learning in the Arts

We love sharing the fantastic pieces of artwork created by our students here at Northampton High, and it is great that so many pupils are sharing there creations with us.

This week, we are delighted to share this wonderful piece drawn by Inaaya in U3. Inaaya has drawn this wonderful portrait in pencil, and it is an amazing likeness to the original photo.

Well done, Inaaya!

Mrs Beacroft
Head of Creative Arts Faculty

Foundation+ Provision in the Easter Holidays

With the uncertainty about the timing of reopening of our schools, we have not been able to confirm Foundation+ provision for the Easter break as yet. We will be reviewing the situation as soon as we have further information and guidance from the government on the impact of national COVID-related restrictions and their implementation at a local level.

Open Events in March

In the absence of our usual March Open Events, we are pleased to be holding two Virtual Open Evenings in early March 2021.

Although we are not able to host visitors in school at the moment, we are working hard to virtually capture the fantastic school spirit and atmosphere that makes Northampton High School so special. If you know of any family members or friends who would like to find out more about joining us, please invite them to contact us at

The events will include Live Zoom meetings, a virtual tour of the school, live Q&A sessions and lots of information from students and staff, and will take place as follows:

Nursery and Junior School admissions: Wednesday 3 March, 6.30pm
Senior School and Sixth Form admissions: Thursday 4 March, 6.30pm

Mrs Wilmot
Director of Marketing and Admissions

Higher Education Evening for 6.1 families - Thursday 25 February 2021

6.1 students have begun to consider what life holds beyond Northampton High School and to make choices regarding Higher Education.

We would therefore like to remind 6.1 students and their families of our Higher Education Evening to be held on Thursday 25 February at 6pm, a few days after we return to school.

Colleagues from the University of East Anglia, Mr Viesel, Deputy Director of Sixth Form and Director of Sixth Form, Mrs Cantwell, will give presentations, and some of our current 6.2 students will tell you about their own experiences. There will also be an opportunity to ask individual questions of colleagues after the formal presentations.

Please see the School Comms dated 8 February for further information and Zoom links.

Mrs Wilmot
Director of Marketing and Admissions

March GDST Talks Events

We are delighted to announce the next two GDST Talks events in March:

1) Dr Nihara Krause on The Science of Motivation, Helping Your Children To Keep Going – will take place on Thursday 4 March at 6pm via Zoom.

This event is suitable for parents with children in Years 7-13, and to book your place, please click here.

2) Emma Gleadhill on Getting your Daughter through Puberty – will talk place on Thursday 18 March

This event is suitable for parents with children in Years 6-13, and to book your place, please click here.

Mrs Wilmot
Director of Marketing & Admissions

Workshops for Indian Cookery and Lippam Art available

We are happy to offer two workshops, which are to be delivered by myself and my cousin. These are titled ‘An Introduction to Indian cookery’ and ‘Lippam Art’ for Girlguiding Midlands.

This year’s theme is SMILE! for Girlguiding Midlands World Thinking Day, which starts on 20 February 2021 at 10 am and finishes on 22nd February 2021 at 6pm.
If there are any Rainbows, Brownies, Guides, Rangers, Leaders, Inspire, Trefoil and family members within our school, we would love to see them virtually for these workshops; for more information please head to ‘Girlguiding Midlands’ or feel free to contact me directly.

Rashmita Shah
Junior School

Term Dates 20/21

Term Dates 21/22

Northampton High School
Newport Pagnell Road, Hardingstone Northampton NN4 6UU
T: 01604 765765 nhsadmin@nhs.Gdst.Net