Nothampton High School
Junior News

Junior News 24 September 2021

The school of unlearning

‘The illiterate of the 21st century will not be those who cannot read and write, but those who cannot learn, unlearn and relearn’, Alvin Toffler.

The American futurist Alvin Toffler was acutely aware of the seismic changes that society was facing when he wrote his bestseller Future Shock in 1970. He saw the fundamental transformation of societal structure and values from the industrial revolution through to the technological age as all-pervasive and constantly accelerating. His prescience was striking, as so much the world of the ’70s is unrecognisable from the one we live in today, in areas such as employment, technology, personal identity, and the media.

Education has changed enormously in that time too, of course, although the structure of the school year and the way we run them in classes and year groups has, in fact, not really altered much since the industrial revolution. However, one recent shock that even Toffler could not have foreseen has, arguably, had a bigger impact on pedagogy and schools than decades of political machinations and assessment changes.

The Covid pandemic forced educators to think about teaching and learning in a completely new way. Distance education was an immediate priority for families and teachers, who, along with most other people, became experts in video conferencing overnight. The new learning that went into this process happened on a scale never before seen in our educational establishment. Managing the education of 20+ young people in a classroom is no easy task, but replacing that with the complexities of delivering stimulating lessons, monitoring progress, and providing meaningful feedback for improvement in an online setting – this called for skills that had barely been tested in most schools.

Read more here

Mr Rickman
Deputy Head Academi



Each week in our assembly, girls are invited to share their achievements in activities outside of school. They are listed below for this week:

Grace – Gymnast of the week

Rithika – has attended Mensa Hi IQ Society exam and achieved the score to qualify for the membership. She got 149 which is the top 2% needed for the membership

Zoe – Roade Football Club ‘Player of the Match’

Messages for parents

Should you have any queries about clubs or any general questions for us, please contact in the first instance, and we will make sure that we respond to you with the information you need.

Just as a reminder, the GAP Club phone number is 07816 751456; please do keep this number handy, so that you have direct access to the GAP team should you need it.

Dates for your Diary:

Saturday 2 October Open Morning 10:00am until 1:00pm
Wednesday 6 – Friday 8 October Year 5 Residential to Grafham Water
Monday 11 – Thursday 14 October Book Fair – Community Room
Wednesday 13 October Parents’ Evening – 6pm-8pm
Thursday 14 October Parents’ Evening – 3.50pm-5.50pm
Thursday 14 October Sports Team photographs
Friday 15 October End of half term
Monday 1 November Start of half term – Winter uniform should be worn by all pupils
Wednesday 10 November Individual school photographs

Class Assemblies

We are pleased to welcome back parents and grandparents to our Wednesday Class Assemblies, 8.35am-8.55am. Refreshments will be served in the Community Room from 8.15am.

We do hope you will be able to join us.

Wednesday 29 September 6H
Wednesday 6 October 2N
Wednesday 13 October 5N
Wednesday 17 November 4H
Wednesday 24 November 1N
Wednesday 1 December 3N

Nursery - Kipper Room and Elmer Room

We have had another fun packed week in Nursery this week. We went for a walk around the school grounds, linking to our focused activities of our senses. We listened for all the different sounds around us and touched and used our sense of smell on different objects that we found. We also refreshed our road safety knowledge, looking both ways putting on our listening ears to see if we could hear any cars in the car park.

The girls had good listening and attention skills in our Ballet lesson on Tuesday.  We had our good toes and naughty toes and the girls were able to run around in a circle on their tiptoes. Danaya was very excited that Mrs Windsor sat next to her.  When I asked what the girls had done in Ballet, Naavya lifted her foot up and said, “Toes”.

See all photos

Some of the girls have found an increased interest in the sand tray this week, where lots of cupcakes have been made.  “They are strawberry ones,” Lara told me. The girls have good control at moving the sand from one container to another.

On Wednesday morning we took Betty, the school dog, out for a walk onto the field for a runaround. “Doggy!” shouted Phoebe. The girls seemed to enjoy it as they all had big smiles on their faces, they also helped hold Betty’s lead as we walked on the path.

Things to remember: We change our library books on a Tuesday so don’t forget to bring them in so you can take a new book home to read. Forest School is on Fridays so don’t forget to bring in your wellies, and to wear long a sleeved top and long trousers. Please could all items of clothing be labelled with your daughter’s name.

Nursery - Pre School

It has been a feast of the senses this week in PreSchool.

On Monday, we focused on ‘sight’, going out into the school grounds to spot the first signs of Autumn. Tuesday was ‘listening day’ (although we do practise our listening every day!). We played games in which we tried to identify the series of sounds we heard through a speaker. It was interesting to hear the girls share all their different opinions. Next, came a focus on our sense of smell. The girls took part in an activity that involved passing round a test tube containing a mystery substance, guessing what was in it by smelling it. Again, it was a great opportunity for discussion.

See all photos

Thursday was a good one – taste! We got to taste some different, delicious foods. “We had crisps, they were salty” P told me afterwards. “The honey was sweet,” said Sophia. At Forest School, the girls hoped that the apples that they hung on the trees would be a tasty treat for the birds. We rounded the week up by learning about our sense of touch by exploring different textures.

Next week in our topic ‘All about me’ our focus will be on families.



This week we have introduced ‘sound corner’ and some letter sounds. The girls have enjoyed using sand for letter formation along with paint and playdough. They have all made a model and thought carefully how and what they needed to construct it.

The outside activities are developing imagination and collaboration, with lava flow and volcanoes being re-created!

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In Maths, we have been consolidating matching and sorting skills, using ‘find the matching sock’ game, and being able to decide on criteria for sorting.

There was great excitement for the first Ballet lesson and wearing the ballet clothes.

We have also been learning about our senses and particularly ‘smell’. We all tried to guess the smell from 4 different essences (orange, mint, vanilla, and caramel), with some very interesting guesses.

Year 1

It is hard to believe Year 1 have only been back at school for three weeks. I was so impressed in our Monday assembly when every single member of the class sat beautifully and actively listened to the talk about the European Day of Languages.

Maths this week has been tricky, beginning to understand some of the abstract symbols in Maths such as < and > but it has been a joy to watch the class persevere and gradually become more confident with the new concepts.

We are coming to the end of our work about ‘Cave Baby’ in English. I wonder which book we will be studying next …..


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What the girls have said:

* “I love to go swimming because I can swim underwater”. Amelia.
* “My favourite thing is assembly because we can share our trophies.” Rayna.

Looking ahead to next week:

* ordering numbers and ordinal numbers in Maths
* writing in role

Enjoy the weekend!

Year 2

This week we have been ordering events from the story ‘Goldilocks and the Three Bears’ and writing it in our own words.

In Maths, we have been comparing numbers and discussing how we know which numbers are bigger.

We have talked about what we need to be able to see in our Science lessons and what we can wear to help us been seen in the dark. We discovered reflective strips on our school coats.

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What the girls have said:

* “My guitar lesson was very exciting. I learnt how to use my index finger and middle finger.” Elouise.
* “I enjoyed Maths when we talked about comparing numbers and used crocodile mouths! The crocodile likes to eat the biggest number.” Shanaya.

Looking ahead to next week:

* Maths – addition, and subtraction
* English – looking at alternative versions of ‘Goldilocks and the Three Bears’
* Science – transparent, translucent, and opaque

Year 3

This week in school we have progressed our work on place value in Maths looking at 100s numbers, and we have been using manipulatives to show and support our learning.

In English, we have continued with ‘The First Drawing’ by Mordicai Gerstein and we have explored many writing skills including the use of apostrophes and using effective adjectives in our sentences to show emotion.

In Science, we have learned even more about rocks, and this week we looked at the rock cycle, the three main rock types, and how they are formed.

In Art, we have been practising our sketching skills and we have attempted to replicate some cave drawings.

In Humanities we have been talking about the hunter-gatherers of the Stone Age and thinking about the various threats and assets that would have been apparent back then. We even explored our school grounds to see if we could find any useful assets if we were hunter-gatherers.

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What the girls have said:

* “I loved the Current Affairs club and watching Newsround.” – Eloise C
* “We liked Science and understanding more about rocks and magma.” – Leah & Amber
* “We liked pretending to be hunter-gatherers!” – Avani & Kinara
* “I enjoyed Modelling club.” – Holly

Looking ahead to next week:

* Maths – place value
* English – ‘The First Drawing’
* Science – the Earth’s layers

Year 4


In Maths, we continued to look at place value. We partitioned our numbers using both base 10 and place value counters as well position numbers, up to 10,000, on a number line.

In English, we wrote a character description of Cassie and then wrote a book review. In both lessons, we were trying to use conjunctions to explain our reasoning.

In Science, we had great fun testing circuits.

Mrs Shaw is very proud of the girls in 4N who practised their lines and performed them beautifully in our Class Assembly.

See all photos

What the girls have said:

* “I really enjoyed the worksheets and loved our dice game. Maths is my favourite subject.” Zara.
* “I am enjoying my new teacher and I loved ripping the clothes in DT.” Artemisia.
* “I liked going to Forest School to make shelters and lugging the sticks about. They were taller than us!” Aurelia.

Looking ahead to next week:

* English – editing and improving our writing. Spelling investigation
* Maths – place value will be continuing. Comparing the size of numbers; ordering a set of numbers and rounding to 1000
* Science – identifying and sorting materials into electrical conductors or insulators

Dates for your diary:

* Forest School: Wednesday 6 October.
You will find a kit list on Firefly (Year 4/Information for Parents) and a reminder will be sent out to you the week before.

Year 5

This week Year 5 have been busy working, as usual, but there has been an air of excitement and anticipation. As I write, the tables in the entrance hall are heaving with homemade cakes and we are getting ready for our Macmillan Coffee Morning.

I am so proud of the girls for their enthusiasm, their creative advertising and their baking skills…or their powers of persuading parents and grandparents to roll up their sleeves in the kitchen this week. Photos and totals to follow; I know the girls can’t wait for the counting in their Maths lesson tomorrow!

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What the girls have said:

* “I really enjoyed dissecting a flower in Science because it was really fun learning about pollination and where bees get the pollen from. When the bees fly to another flower, the pollen comes off and it goes down and makes seeds. My mum says we couldn’t live without bees because they produce all the food for animals to eat.” Jessica.
* “I liked painting my apple and sketching them in Art. I like using watercolours because you can mix them.” Ishani.
* “On Thursday morning, I was in the entrance hall with Shreya sitting by our Macmillan display helping people with their cakes. It was amazing seeing how many people wanted to contribute to our charity event. So many people brought in cakes, brownies, cookies and so on. I am really excited to be selling all of these goodies!” Risara.

Dates for your diary:

* Wednesday 29 September – Forest School (come in Forest School clothes and bring PE kit for the afternoon)
* Saturday 2 October – Open Morning (Year 5 guides in winter uniform please)

Year 6

It has been another action packed week in Year 6 and the girls have continued to rise to every challenge.

We have been impressed with their developing skills of perseverance and determination to improve their standard of work by listening carefully to the advice they have been given.

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Highlights of the week:

* “My highlight of the week was doing Science because I liked animals putting into their groups and making a key.” Emily.
* “My highlight of the week was karaoke in Senior School for the European Day of Languages. We sang along to songs from different countries and it was really fun!” Romy.
* “This week has been great. We really enjoyed the Drama activity in English where we acted, in role, as one of the immigrants on a passenger ship. We felt lots of empathy for their perilous journey. We also loved the European Day of Languages assembly and the karaoke session at lunchtime. Another highlight was watching the inspirational Year 4 assembly on persevering.” Safiya, Darcy, and Sophia.

We look forward to developing our multiplication skills in Maths, delving deeper into the symbolism used in ‘The Arrival’ by Shaun Tan and continuing to explore the use of keys in Science.

GAP Club


Although we initially said we would do animal-themed activities this week, the girls have decided they would rather dress up and engage in role-play instead.

Girls from Reception to Year 6 have enjoyed these activities so much that we think we may need to look for some more dressing up clothes.

We have also painted with watercolours and spent a lot of time outside enjoying the fabulous weather.

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What the girls have said:

* “I like having fun dressing up.” Tami, Year 5
* “I like having fun outside.” Harriet, Year 5

Maisie sings at Claridge's in aid of Young Lives Versus Cancer

On Friday 10 September, Year 9 student Maisie had the honour of performing at Claridge’s in aid of Young Lives Versus Cancer. Maisie led the ensemble in a beautiful rendition of ‘This Is Me’ from The Greatest Showman, and wowed the audience with a breathtaking performance.

The Gala Dinner was an extraordinary success, and raised over £400,000 for Young Lives Versus Cancer! Both Maisie and her sister Cecily had a wonderful evening and really enjoyed their part in raising money for such a great cause.

Well done Maisie, we are so proud of you!

Mrs Wilmot
Director of Marketing & Admissions

Research into attitudes to learning and the launch of Learning Leaders

You may remember that in the last academic year we conducted some research here in school into student attitudes to their learning following two periods of Guided Home Learning. One way in which we collected data was via focus groups. This proved to be a very effective forum for gathering the thoughts and experiences of our students following the most challenging of times in their learning journey. The students were grateful for the opportunity to discuss their own experiences in relation to their learning and progress, and their wellbeing.

Moving forward, we would like to continue to offer such opportunities by creating a group of Learning Leaders from across Years 6 to 10 and Year 12. These students will represent their learning community and will also be expected to conduct their own research into effective learning and report on their findings. The forum will be led by a number of staff members and our Deputy Head Girl for Student Services.

We will be inviting students in these year groups to apply for this role; please discuss this opportunity at home and encourage your daughter to look out for further information.

Mrs Hill (School & Trust Consultant Teacher for Educational Research)
Mrs Curtis (Teacher of History) 
Mrs Fordham (Year 6 Teacher)

GDST's 'Raise Her Up' Podcast - Episode 2 out now!

Episode 2 of the GDST ‘Raise Her Up’ podcast is now live!

This edition is titled ‘Equal Parenting’ and we are joined by Dr Charlotte Faircloth, who offers practical & realistic tips for how to model equal parenting in the home. You will find ‘Raise Her Up’ at your normal Podcast source, or by clicking here.

Mr Nash
Marketing & Communications Officer

Whole School Open Morning - Saturday 2 October 2021

Sincere thanks to all families who have offered the support of their daughters for our Open Morning on Saturday 2 October, from 10am to 1pm. The day promises to be a superb showcase of life at  Northampton High, our students, and our staff.

If you would like to come along, please do feel most welcome, and should you have family, friends, or neighbours keen to visit us, please encourage them to book their place here and join us!

Macmillan Coffee Morning

On behalf of Macmillan Cancer Support, Year 5 would like to say a HUGE thank you to every single person who made cakes for our Coffee Morning, and to every single person who bought them!

We have just passed the £500 mark, and are hoping to add to this total throughout the day.

YOU ARE AMAZING! Thank you!!

Dyslexia Awareness Information

To help to commemorate Dyslexia Awareness Week, Pam Tomalin, Chair of Northamptonshire and Buckinghamshire Dyslexia Association, will be delivering a whole school assembly at Northampton High on Friday 8 October.

After the assembly at 9am, Pam will be hosting a coffee morning exclusively for the parents of pupils at our school. Parents will have the opportunity to meet with Pam and hear about how the charity supports dyslexics and their families. An invitation and booking form will follow by School Post.

In addition, a FREE parent Webinar – Assistive Technology & Self Esteem for dyslexic children – is being hosted on Wednesday 29 September. Please click here for more information.

NBDA – Dyslexia Support in Northamptonshire & Buckinghamshire

Mrs Beezley
Learning Enhancement Co-ordinator

Book Fair

Term Dates 21/22

Term Dates 22/23

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