Nothampton High School
Junior News

Junior News 26 March 2021

Dear parents and guardians

I have been fortunate to work with many inspiring colleagues over the years, but Chris Bailey was a giant amongst them.

He was a force of energy, a brilliant teacher, a great leader and – above all – a wonderful human being. 

Every Junior School and Nursery parent will remember him for his sunny nature and his daily presence on the school gate, welcoming all to a new day because he wanted to, and not because it was a duty.

As a colleague, an educator and a friend, I could not have wished for better. He will be sorely missed by all in this community, and beyond, but it was a privilege to know him, even for a short time.

Caroline Petryszak

Reflections from Mrs Davis

The value of a strong school community is never more evident or important than in times like these, when we are faced with news or challenges that touch us personally and professionally. The sad news of Chris Bailey’s passing, following his short yet courageous battle with pancreatic cancer, has had a deep impact on our school family, as you will understand.

Although I only met Chris twice, my colleagues have spoken about him with such compassion, admiration and respect, that I can entirely comprehend the gravity of his loss.

Colleagues speak of Chris’ magical qualities, his passion for pedagogy, as well as for music and running, and for bringing a vital energy into the classroom and to all that he met; ever present and with an easy, genuine manner, Chris will be missed by pupils, colleagues and parents alike. Our hearts go out to his family and we will look forward to finding ways to celebrate his life in the weeks and months to come.

This has been a difficult day in a challenging period, but one that highlights once again the truly special family that is Northampton High. I am extremely grateful to every member of staff for their warmth and compassion that they share with the girls, not least, today. I have been equally amazed and grateful for the way the girls returned to school only three weeks ago with such spirit and positivity, and can hardly believe just how much they have achieved and, indeed, packed into such a short period of time back in the ‘real’ classroom.

You will see that today’s Junior News is certainly a bumper edition. All that remains is to thank you most sincerely for your continued support, and to wish you all an enjoyable and relaxing break.

I really look forward to seeing you at the beginning of the Summer term.

Warm wishes,

Marissa Davis

Undivided: GDST Student Diversity Council and 2021/22 Head Girl Team announced!

I am delighted to congratulate Millie from Year 12 and Rutendo from Year 5 on their appointments as the High School’s Diversity Student Council representatives on the GDST board. Millie and Rutendo will commence their roles as we begin the summer term, sharing ideas with students from across the GDST at their first meeting in April.

GDST are focusing upon equipping our students with an understanding and compassion for others and the skills and resilience to challenge behaviours and practices which are inappropriate, to improve our society. GDST has formed a Student Council for Diversity made up of representatives from all GDST schools. The role of representatives, including Millie and Rutendo, will be to share what is working well in their schools and collaborate to develop strategy and resources to build awareness and change behaviour.

During Wednesday morning’s Sixth Form assembly, we were delighted to welcome our brand new Head Girl team for the 2021/22 academic year (pictured  below in the front row).

Current Head Girl, Daria, and her amazing team of Ellen, Shri and Sophie (pictured on the back row) gave lovely speeches as they handed over the reins to the incoming team of Stephanie (Partnerships), Freya (Marketing), Shreya (Student Services) and new Head Girl Jodie.

Sincere thanks to our out-going Student Senior Leadership Team for all of your inspiration, commitment and energy over the past year, and congratulations to our new Head Girl team, who, we know, will be brilliant in their roles!

Caroline Petryszak

House Point News

Well done to everybody in Years 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 and 6 for all their hard work at home during Guided Home Learning and at school this term.

The teachers are all very proud of the girls. There are lots of opportunities to earn more House Points next term, including House Debating and Sports Day, so every House has a chance of being the winner of the House Cup!

The final totals for the House Point competition this term are:

4th Place Artemis 239
3rd Place Hestia 251
2nd Place Selene 263
1st Place Demeter 269

House Point Totals so far this year:

4th Place Artemis 788
3rd Place Hestia 792
2nd Place Selene 868
1st Place Demeter 908

House Music Competition

Mr Nathan, Mrs Fordham and the Year 6 Leadership Team greatly enjoyed viewing and listening to the wonderful recordings of ‘Tomorrow’ from the musical Annie.

The Year 6 Music Captains and House Captains found it very difficult to decide on the winners because every year group sang with such enthusiasm and energy. After deliberation, they agreed on the winners and decided to award two House Points to everyone else who took part in the competition. Well done to all!

1st place Year 3 (5 House Points each)
2nd place Year 5 (4 House Points each)
3rd place Years 1 & 2 (3 House Points each)

Eco-Poster Competition - Congratulations to joint winners Anya and Elizabeth!

Book Cover Design Competition

The Year 6 Librarians and House Captains really enjoyed judging the wonderfully creative book cover designs and have awarded a house point to everyone who entered the competition. They offer special congratulations to the winners.

‘Big Red’ by Jasmine in Reception
‘Harry Potter’ by Avani in Year 2
‘How to Train Your Dragon’ by Lottie in Year 5


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

Phoebe – I am so excited to tell you that my audition with American Ballet Theatre was successful! I found out that I have been invited to train with the American Ballet Theatre School on their summer training programme for talented dancers. There is a virtual training option, but I am hoping to travel to New York in August (travel restrictions allowing).

Phoebe – in the Milton Keynes Festival of the Arts achieved 1st place solo verse, 1st place solo vocal performance, set piece and 2nd place musical theatre solo.

Jemima – in the Milton Keynes Festival of the Arts achieved 1st place solo verse and 2nd place solo vocal performance, set piece.

Dates for your diary

Friday 26 March – end of Spring Term

Thursday 15 April – start of Summer Term

Monday 19 April – all clubs start

Monday 31 May – Friday 4 June Half Term

Summer uniform is compulsory after May half term and optional after Easter.

Science Week

It has been wonderful to hear that Junior School girls thoroughly enjoyed Science Week and have been inspired to work on their Rube Goldberg designs at home. As you can see, from the quotes below, the sessions delivered by Grace Webb, of CBeebies’ ‘Grace’s Amazing Machines’, were very well received. With the aid of some exciting video clips of herself in action, Grace talked to Years 1-4 about ‘forces’ and how these contribute to the movement of her amazing machines. The girls had some really great questions for Grace and she responded brilliantly, adding to their scientific knowledge and understanding. Huge thanks to Grace and to the staff members who facilitated her virtual visit to Northampton High last Friday.

Year 1 – We loved having Grace Webb come to talk to us about forces. It was so much fun and she has been on some amazing machines! We also really liked thinking about different inventions and designing our own.

Year 4 – We were so excited to see Grace Webb because she has been on television and we were actually talking to her. She had lots of cool gadgets like her paratrike and motorbike. It was fun building the chain reactions (Rube Goldberg machines) because some things didn’t work and we had to improvise.

Year 5 – Watching the Rube Goldberg continuous movement machines was fascinating because there was a piano that fell on the floor. We designed our own machines on paper but some of the designs were a bit crazy. I am planning to make my design at home and add some finishing touches, and work out how I can get my zip wire to work… I’m thinking string and coat hangers. Ellie

Year 6 – Science Week has been full of incredible inventions and designs and loads of brilliant ideas around the school. We loved watching the videos about Rube Goldberg machines because it was interesting how things as small as dominoes could knock down books. We have seen this sort of machine in lots of different movies without realising e.g. the breakfast machine in ‘Chitty Chitty Bang Bang’. We enjoyed designing our own machines and seeing other people’s designs when we acted out ‘Dragon’s Den’. We had to stand up and pitch our ideas for 30 seconds.

Machines designed by Year 6 included ones to do the following: pack your school bag for you, decorate a cake, paint eggs for Easter, boil an egg and turn on the light when your alarm clock goes off, dispense sweet treats…

Nursery Kipper Room and Elmer Room

As spring is more evident in our environment, we have introduced some spring-themed activities. We began by painting tulips with forks, we created flowers using different shapes, sticking different types of paper, using glue and sharing some springtime stories.

The girls have shown an interest in sensory play, so we offered different textures for them to explore and to expand their language, while listening to the sounds that different materials make. The girls were asked about different textures of materials they were playing with; “it’s warm”, Annabel said whilst playing in the rice; “it sounds like rain!” said Annabel.

The girls have also been filling a variety of containers which is developing their hand-eye coordination and fine motor skills: “Look, it’s full!” exclaimed Florence. A reoccurring theme over the last few weeks has been making cupcakes with different resources: “I’m making strawberry ones for me and Sahana”, said Isabella. “I’m making cupcakes for Mummy and Hugo”, Iris told me. The teachers in Nursery have been treated to lots of yummy treats.

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We are continuing to look at letters and sounds. We have been writing them in coloured sand to see if we can tell what sounds are in our names; “A is for Annabel”, “ABCDEF….”, Rylee sang to me.

Next week we will keep talking about different textures and work out some different words to use to expand the girls’ vocabulary.

Have a nice Easter break and we will see you all soon.

Can we please remind you to send your child in with a spare set of clothes, and return any clothes that belong to Nursery.

Nursery Pre School

In Pre School we have been continuing to look at spring and incorporated some Easter activities within the week. The girls got fully engaged in our PE lesson where they turned into bunnies to find some eggs that contained instructions for different exercises. Jasmine read the clues to the class and the workout began. A range of different creative resources and Easter pictures were set out for the girls to take the lead and create different models and pictures.

The girls have explored the open ended resources where their imagination has come to life, adding small world toys to create endless stories and play within the classroom.

Malleable resources have seen the girls get stuck in to exploring the different consistencies. You could talk to your daughter about their preferences.  Did they prefer the clean soap flakes or dirty mud?

What the girls have said:

“I will eat them all”, said Lily when talking about Easter eggs.
“The Easter bunny is going to hide the eggs!” said Nyra.
“I’m going to eat all the Easter eggs at Daddy’s house!” said Isabelle.
“It feels like slime!” said Lily-May, when talking about soap flakes.

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This week we have continued using the story ‘The Smartest Giant in Town’, to think about height (tall and short). The girls have drawn and painted one very tall giraffe and one short giraffe. They have found things that were taller and shorter than themselves. We have also been learning more about the concept of subtraction and the number 20.

With the better weather, we have been undertaking some of our activities outside, which has been developing problem solving and risk-taking skills.

Many thanks for attending out virtual Parents’ Evenings; it was good to catch up and feedback after Guided Home Learning and hope that these were useful. If you have any further questions, then please feel free to get in touch via the Tapestry app.

Wishing you all a very enjoyable break and let’s hope for some lovely spring weather!

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Year 1

We have had a very busy and exciting week in Year 1. We have been focusing on spring this week and looking ahead to Easter. In English, we have been thinking about the signs of spring and we have created spring acrostic poems.

In our Maths, we have been thinking about comparing number sentences and using our number bonds to 10, to help us with our number bonds to 20. We have been thinking about Easter and have been busy crafting Easter cards and baskets. We have also really enjoyed our fabulous finale for our ‘Awesome Australia’ topic. We had so much fun looking back on all of our amazing learning, thinking about our favourite parts and getting creative with exploring land and sea animals. We really liked making Pavlova and Lamington cakes and some of us enjoyed the Vegemite.

I hope everyone has a wonderful and safe Easter Holiday. I look forward to seeing you all in the Summer Term.

What the girls have said:

“I liked making Easter crafts”. Grace, Rhoda, Elouise
“I enjoyed the Easter Hunt”. Shanaya, Caoimhe, Emily
“I liked completing the Australia tasks on our fabulous finale”. Eve
“I loved the making Lamington cake and Pavlova”. Isabella


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Year 2

We’ve had a busy but exciting final week of the term in Year 2. At the start of the week, we had our Fabulous Finale which saw the end to our topic, ‘Awesome Australia’. We had lots of fun making and tasting Pavlova, Lamington cake and Vegemite sandwiches.

There were also plenty of other activities that kept us busy which included learning how to draw a koala and a kangaroo, building different Australian landmarks and using Hama beads to make sea creatures. The girls loved having one last play with the small world features and the Jeep role play area. During the week we also enjoyed a Sound and Light science webinar where we watched lots of different experiments and thought about making our own predictions as to what might happen.

We have been thinking about Easter this week too and completed various Easter activities that have been lots of fun!

What the girls have said:

“My favourite thing was making my Easter card!” Holly and Eloise R
“I loved making the mini Pavlovas and Lamington cakes”. Leah
“I loved the Pavlova too!” Amber
“I enjoyed making the Easter baskets and chocolate nests”. Avani

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Year 3

This week in Maths we have continued to work with fractions and understand what the denominator and numerator represent. In English, we have studied the main character in our historical fiction story and discussed more about Pompeii.

We watched and discussed the Easter story in Humanities. In Science, we looked at the job bones do and how muscles help us to move.

What the girls have said:

“I enjoyed playing the games in our fun swimming lesson”. Varnikha 
“I liked making our Easter egg cards in Art”. Priscilla 
“I enjoyed learning more about Pompeii”. Eliza
“I loved organising all my One Drive files in computing”. Eva 
We have all enjoyed reading Mrs Dadge’s boys’ Mr Men books this week.

Looking ahead to next term:

In Maths – we will be delving deeper into fractions and looking at tenths as decimals.
In English – we will be continuing to explore our historical fiction book and finding out what happens to our characters.
Our Humanities and Science will link to our English text with us learning about rocks and soil, and volcanoes and earthquakes.

I hope you all have a very restful Easter break. Thank you very much for my chocolate treats; I have told the girls that I now need to find a good hiding place for them away from my boys! Thank you for all your support this term. Happy Easter!

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Year 4

In Maths, we have been dividing 1 and 2-digit numbers by 100. In English, we have written two more diary entries in the role of Cinnamon and used various techniques to show her changing emotions. In Science, we had great fun creating our own classification keys in groups.

What the girls have said:

“I really loved Science to see which animals have legs and which don’t and comparing what they eat”. Jessica
“I enjoyed making the Easter cards. We made an Easter egg with a hinged top and a sliding chick. We decorated the eggs with different patterns”. Harini
“I liked making the classification keys in Science. We had to think about questions that would work with the animals we had”. Ellie

Looking ahead to next term:

English – The Story of Tutankhamun (non-chronological reports)
Maths – decimals (recap on bonds to 10 and 100, making a whole and writing decimals)
Science – sound
History – Ancient Egypt

I have set some OPTIONAL Maths activities on Mathletics but the girls deserve a good rest after all of their hard work since Christmas. I do hope you are able to enjoy some happy family time together over the Easter holidays.

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Year 5

I am so proud of the girls this term! They have very patiently done their end of unit assessments in Maths and written some imaginative ‘Lost Thing’ stories based on the original text by Shaun Tan that we have been studying in English. But it’s all the extras that have made this week really special.

As usual, the girls had a brilliant time down at Forest School, and we were really lucky with the weather – the spring sunshine arrived and great fun was had testing out waterproofs with buckets of water! The girls also had a wonderful time this week with actors from the Globe Theatre; first for their tour and then for a memorable retelling of Macbeth. Who knew our Year 5 girls would love the gruesome nature of the play so much?

Finally, I have been delighted to share with the class all the Goldberg-inspired continuous motion machines that girls have designed, built and filmed. It has been lovely seeing the variety of bits and bobs that have been collected together to make machines – from books and marble runs to footballs, drainpipes and zip-lining teddies. The girls have shown impressive perseverance in order to get their designs to work. A huge well done to everyone involved.

What the girls have said:

“I enjoyed building my Rube Goldberg machine and watching loads of videos of other people doing theirs and picking ideas. It got a bit annoying the first few times I tried, because it didn’t work, and then I tried again and it worked, but it didn’t knock the book over at the end. When it did work, it was really fun… but then I had to pack it all up again which took quite a long time!” Emily F

“My highlight this week was Forest School because we got to do a variety of things. I had a great time using the guttering to make a track that was supposed to reach the pond. We had to lift up some bits because they kept falling down, so we put logs underneath them. When it was finished we went to get lots of buckets of water to try it out and when Betty came over she wanted to have a drink out of one of our buckets!” Ayana

“I really enjoyed the Shakespeare Globe Theatre tour we went on because we all got to go and no-one got left out and it was really fun. We learned that there is a secret door behind the stage where the actors go and where they can listen to what is happening on the stage. I really liked it when we were standing on the stage saying a line from Henry V because it made me feel like a professional actor. I was really surprised when they said the rich people used to stand on a balcony above and behind the stage. They didn’t get a good view of the actors but they could look down on the poor people and everyone got to see them and realise how rich they were!” Ellie

I hope you have a restful and relaxing Easter holiday.

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Year 6

Year 6 have risen to every challenge they have faced this week from converting measurements in Maths, showing their understanding of evolution in Science and speaking out against the unjust treatment of women during the time of the Suffragette movement.

They have also enjoyed a virtual tour of The Globe Theatre in London and magical re-telling of the famous Shakespearian tragedy, Macbeth, and ‘Hopping across the pond’ to share quiz questions and special objects with our ‘Big Sisters’ in California. Great excitement has also been caused with the introduction of our Design and Technology project, to design and construct a cushion, and we look forward to making these next term.

What the girls have said:

“I loved designing cushions and preparing the speeches in English about the unfair treatment of women workers at the Bryant and May match factory that led to an effective strike and caused changes to be made for the better. Badminton is a great sport I hope to play it more because it keeps you active and on your feet. I loved designing our animals in Science because we had to find a way of ensuring our animals survived in harsh conditions like living, eating, getting water, and finding a mate following a global disaster!” Isla M

“My highlight of the week must be working on our evolution PowerPoint. We had to pick a biome, either the lake, mountains, or the forest. My team picked the forest then we could pick an animal – it could be made up or real- we picked a flying gecko but disaster struck, and a meteor hit the planet and it did some terrible things so we had to think if our animal would survive or not and if it evolved to survive”. Elizabeth

“I really enjoyed doing badminton because we got taught by Mrs Fordham and Miss Taylor. First, we started off by doing some warm ups and follow the leader. After we did ‘Around the World’ – it was harder than it sounds but we managed to do a rally of 7. Next, we did rallies, and Sophia and I got the highest score of 42. It was fun because we haven’t done badminton for a while”. Isla H

“My highlight of the week is the ‘Across the Pond’ because we got to see the people from California again. We got to ask questions and show an object that was precious to us and show the people in our group. It was really fun”. Odelia

“I really enjoyed doing sport club this week because we got to play some netball games for the last club of the term and we also got to play a match of 4v4. My team won 5-3 so I was really proud of our team. We also played this game where you stand in the goals and get timed to see how quickly you can get 3 goals”. Verity

Wishing you all a relaxing break over Easter.

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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