Nothampton High School
High News

Friday 3 July 2020

It’s definitely the case that we have taken part in many ‘firsts’ over the last term and our End of Term will be yet another first.

Normally, on the last day of term we have a half day with no lessons and many celebrations of the end of term. The centrepiece of the last day is always our Presentation Assembly and the morning is spent sorting out Form rooms, saying goodbyes and watching or participating in the House Debating final.

Next Friday, we will be posting the Presentation Assembly link on Firefly by 8am so that the pupils can watch it during the morning.  There are still many prizes and awards to celebrate so I hope pupils will watch it and, perhaps for the first time, so can parents and family members.

Form Tutors will be arranging a get together with their Form Groups to wish them well for summer and check in with them. There will be either a House Quiz or Year Group Quiz for the U3-L5 year groups.

With no Form rooms to tidy this year, perhaps we can have a mass bedroom-tidying session instead!

We really look forward to returning properly to school in September and welcoming everyone back.

Aside from any 6.1 pupils who are actually in school, we will finish the day at 12 noon.  If your daughter is in the children of Key Worker supervision, we are happy for them to remain until 4pm, but would appreciate you letting us know.

Mrs O’Doherty
Deputy Head Pastoral Care and Guidance

Junior School

We have now completed the penultimate week of the year, and I am incredible proud of how the girls and our staff have managed the full re-opening of our Junior School.  We have managed to deliver a full curriculum and excellent pastoral care, whilst still managing the safety of our community.  We are now, of course, planning for September and will get more information out to you as soon as government guidance becomes clearer.

For our final week of term, we will of course be continuing with learning as we have done up to this point, but we will also ensure that the girls enjoy some socially-distanced fun and games.  We will have assemblies to celebrate successes and say goodbyes, and we will talk in detail with the girls about moving up to new year groups.

Times of change are challenging for all of us and it would be very helpful if you could talk to your daughter about the opportunities provided by change as well as the challenges.  Your daughter now knows her new teacher and her new class mix; all of our teachers are incredibly excited about their new cohorts and about planning new learning for the academic year 2020/21.

Your daughter’s new teacher has sent you an audio clip to introduce themselves and to give you an idea of what the year ahead will entail.  Do watch this together and have a chat about it over dinner.

A final reminder that we have a half day on Friday 10 June, the last day of term.  You will be able to collect your daughter between 11.45am and 12.15pm on that day.

Mr Bailey
Head of Junior School

Virtual Welcome Morning

Today we hosted a virtual Welcome Morning for the pupils who will be joining us in Upper Third in September.

Pupils had the opportunity to meet their tutor and the rest of their tutor group, attend some sample lessons, find out about how school will look and feel in September and ask lots of questions.

The technical hitches, which seem to be an inevitability at present, did not dampen the enthusiasm of the pupils and we cannot wait to meet them properly in September.

We will be writing to all pupils moving into Upper Third next week with some helpful Q&A information to assist with any outstanding queries.

Mrs O’Doherty
Deputy Head – Pastoral Care and Guidance

Virtual Sports Day 2020

Due to the ongoing global pandemic, we could unfortunately not hold our annual Sports Day in its regular format. However, we could not let the year end without hosting one of our favourite annual events! So, on Friday 26 June, we were delighted to hold our first ever Virtual Sports Day!

During lockdown, we have used video conferencing technology such as Zoom to hold a number of successful virtual events including Open Days, Welcome Evenings and, of course, Guided Home Learning, with Sports Day being the next event to go online.

The PE department set the Senior School 8 challenges involving various skill and fitness-based tasks, with them all being able to be completed in the home or garden. Pupils were asked to complete the challenges to the best of their ability with KS3 also planning their afternoon and developing sports leadership skills in the process.

Across the four school houses, Artemis, Demeter, Hestia and Selene, a massive 125 pupils took part in the Senior School, with a further 90 across Junior School from Reception – Year 6. Despite not being physically with their Houses and friends, many girls took photos of their participation and we are pleased to share some with you below, and you can find the Senior School results by clicking here.

With all the year groups in Junior School back in school, our younger students were able to take part in a ‘live’ version of the Virtual Sports Day on the school playing fields. KS1 participated in 5 adapted versions of the challenges with KS2 completing 8 challenges again with some adaptations.

The weather was glorious and the competition fierce; even Mr Bailey, Mr Loveday, Mrs Fordham and Miss Brandon-Jones had to give the Standing Long Jump a go, each striving for first place! The girls worked extremely hard across the board with some of the planking lasting minutes, it was certainly impressive. Other challenges included the Stork Balance Test and the number of sit ups and speed bounces you could do in 30 seconds. To see everyone participating with maximum effort and having fun was great during these challenging times. Please click here to view the Junior School results.

We want to take this opportunity to thank all the girls who participated in what we hope to have been a fun filled afternoon of physical activity. Thank you also to the House Captains for organising their House relay and to all the girls who took part in these, they’re certainly fun to watch.

Thanks must also go to the staff for their participation in the Virtual Staff Relay Race. Finally, we are extremely pleased with the engagement of the girls, especially in their own homes. The motivation, enthusiasm and results have been fantastic. Well done all.

Please click here to view more photos from the Virtual Sports Day.

Mrs Blake
Director of Sport

1 to 1 devices at Northampton High School

You may recall that earlier this year we launched the Digacy programme, with the vision of bringing all things technological together to help develop future skills and transformative approaches to teaching and learning (details here). Little did we know that the Covid-19 would push technology even further to the forefront of our thinking, giving us an unprecedented test-bed for using Cloud computing platforms across the school. 

Our Digacy working party has been looking at the question of how best to empower pupils through technology and 1 to 1 devices were on the agenda long before the pandemic.

Having an individual device to use in and out of school can be a real game changer, allowing teachers and students to make maximum advantage of new opportunities for personalised instruction and learning. When every student has a device, they are far less likely to be passive learners. Instead, content can be delivered in a wide variety of formats (online documents, video, presentations, etc.) that students can access themselves, often in advance of lessons, freeing the teacher to to work with students individually or in small groups during lesson time. Students can also work collaboratively on group projects during lessons, and through online tools outside of class, allowing them to extend the breadth and reach of their learning. 

We are pleased to be moving to a 1 to 1 device policy across the school from Year 5 to 6.2, with all pupils bringing in a personal device every day from September. I wrote to parents recently to explain the practicalities of this, including a FAQs document and a Zoom meeting next week. Around the world, schools have adopted a range of approaches to bringing in 1 to 1 devices, for example, by insisting on iPads or Windows devices. By adopting what is known as a ‘bring your own device’ (BYOD), we believe we are offering the most flexible approach possible for families. 

We have been able to make this step because of our access to GDST-wide Cloud computing platforms, which do not rely on a particular technology, beyond the need for good internet connectivity. Google Classroom, which will enable teachers to receive work and offer feedback, is tried and tested and is easy to use for both teachers and students. As an added bonus, if we are forced to return to Guided Home Learning as a result of the pandemic again, having a personalised approach will enable us to prioritise live lessons via video to ensure as smooth a connection as possible between home and school.

If you would like to attend the Zoom meeting on Wednesday 8 July at 7pm please use the link below:
Meeting ID: 983 1779 8500
Password: 5fQ72b

Mr Rickman
Deputy Head Academic

U3 German students hold a Virtual Fashion Show

On Tuesday 30 June, the U3 German students held a Virtual Fashion Show.

The girls had been studying the topic of clothes, with students creating their own Avatar/Bitmoji before writing about their style and what they wore. We next held a live video call, in which each person described their clothing, with the other students trying to figure out which character belong to each student! We all had a lot of fun, and you can see the girls’ designs below.

Mrs Morgan
Teacher of German & French


Creative Arts Spotlight

For our penultimate Creative Arts Spotlight for this academic year, we have a bumper edition filled with amazing pieces of work submitted by our talented students.

The first entry this week comes from Chloe in U3, who shows a great understanding of shading in her drawing of paint brushes (opposite).

Our next two submissions (below) come from Leona in L4 and Anjola in U4. Both students show a fantastic knowledge of using colour in their work, well done girls!

U3 student Louise is up next, and we are delighted to showcase her magnificent painting of different types of fruit. Great work!

Two more U3 students, Isla and Imogen, are up next. Both students show off their fantastic skill set with their respective still life colour study and grapefruit drawing.

Onto U4, and we are delighted to share these masterpieces by Aibhilin (left), Cecily (upper right) and Lizzie (lower right). Three very different pieces of work which showcase a host of different skills for fantastic results – great work ladies!

Our last gallery of the week features work from students of all ages: Caitlin L4, Ella U4, Grace L4, Janice U3 and Shannon U3. All 6 students have produced fantastic drawings with colour to produce fantastic, lifelike results.

Another week of exemplary work completed by our fantastic students. As always, you can view full size versions of the images by clicking here, and we look forward to sharing more work with you next week!

Mrs Beacroft
Head of Creative Arts Faculty

Kings Camp Summer 2020

Kings Camp will be operating their Summer Camps at Northampton High for 6 weeks, starting from Monday 13 July 2020.

The Camp is open for students aged between 5-17. For full information, please click here to view the Kings Camp Flyer.

Mrs Headley
Director of Finance and Operations

Term Dates 2020/21

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