Our annual visit to the Northcott Theatre to see “Cinderella” provided an entertaining beginning to the year whilst keeping alive important family traditions. Other outings included year ten’s trip, also to the Northcott, to see “Spies” by Michael Frayn – an evocation of childhood set in the Second World War. An innovative production, much enjoyed by the children, and which closely followed Frane’s book. Year ten also visited the Devon County Show as part of their Home Economics coursework. Year seven, along with the Lower School, visited Coldharbour Mill and the younger pupils thoroughly enjoyed an Embalming Workshop held in preparation for the forthcoming visit to London to see the Tutenkhamun Exhibition.This was an amazing experience, which had the pupils totally enthralled and provided much information for their own drawings and artefacts,which currently decorate the school. A visit to Grenwich and the famous Meridian Line completed a tiring but highly successful day. The Lower School also visited a local Synagogue to experience the symbols of the Jewish faith in an authentic setting and a “Georgian Architectural Tour of Exeter” complimented their history project. “The Marie Curie Daffodil Appeal” raised £460 with the younger pupils growing bulbs, painting pictures of the flowers for a competition and holding an exhibition of their work.
Several pupils again took part in the UK Maths Challenge. The Intermediate Best in School was Josh Barlow who gained silver with Lizzie Ives, Jordan Wills, Tiffany Young and David Hood all achieving bronze. The Junior Challenge was won by Aaron Howard who achieved bronze.
The Chemistry Department had another very successful term with four year eights attending the “Salter’s Festival of Chemistry” at Plymouth University. To their delight Axel Drury,Jacob Law, Sophia Vaughan and Ashley Hart won the competition with Blundells second and Exeter School third. Heather Sampson, Jordan Wills, Lizzie Ives and Katie Snow have been awarded places at “Salter’s Chemistry Camp” where they will spend a week, in the summer, at a University of their choice, immersed in all things chemical! Also we have been asked to take part in the RSC’s 50th promotional chemistry competition- first prize £1000- Mr England’s got his eye firmly fixed on that! Half of year nine and Mrs Lovett passed the Food Hygiene exam throwing down the gauntlet to the others and Mrs Morgan!
In creative arts years one to eight were thoroughly prepared for their LAMDA exams by Mrs Faucett and, prior to the event, performances were given to pupils and proud parents. Phil Symes gave a workshop on comic book art in which he demonstrated drawing skills and techniques in creating comic style heroes and the pupils delighted in developing their own creations.
School clubs have included surfing, Italian cookery, ceramics, rugby and photography and film making. After school and lunch time clubs were tennis, basketball, cricket and football.Years 5/9 enjoyed a Salsa line dancing workshop and this is scheduled to become a club in September.
Several pupils took part in the Devon Table Tennis Championships with varying success, but Ben Snow was a very worthy winner of the under 13’s section. Three teams were entered for the Exmoor Challenge, walking strongly,completing the course in good time and thoroughly enjoying the event as always. We were looking forward to Ten Tors after the disappointment of last year even although we were plagued with injury and illness. Katie Snow cracked bones in her arm just days before the event and was not allowed to compete. Lucy Semmens filled the slot but was taken off during the event with an asthmatic attack as was Georgia Slatter with heat exhaustion. Both were devastated after months of training but, unfortunately, the heat claimed many casualties. Lizzie Ives, Harry Dagworthy, Luke Oliver and John Vaughan soldiered on and were delighted to complete the Challenge, proudly showing off their well deserved medals. Thanks to Mr Dent and Mrs de Bruyn who gave up so much of their time to train and support the team and who work so well together!
The SATS results were excellent with mostly 5’s being achieved in Maths, Science and English at KS2 while KS3 pupils gained mainly 7’s with Tiffany Young reaching level 8 in maths. Unfortunately, we have to wait until August for the GCSE results!
Mrs Coles has retired (again!) but will be returning to help with support teaching. Mrs Alford too, decided to hang up her teaching hat after 10 very happy years in the Lower School. She will be sadly missed but, again, will not loose contact with the school. Mrs Cathy Roddis will be the new ‘Owls’ teacher and we look forward to her joining us in September. Because of increased numbers in the Lower School we have had to create another class and Mrs Joy Lovett will be moving to the Lower School as year 5 teacher.
Welcome Day was its usual resounding success with all the new pupils arriving for their special day. Although nervous at first, the ice was soon broken as new friendships were made. The new year 7 had a varied day enjoying various lessons including making flubber in chemistry and in IT using Photoshop to alter and change photographs of themselves.
Sports Day was held at the Exeter Arena and we were really lucky with the weather. Almost every child in years 5 to 10 took part and the competition was as fierce as ever with several school records being broken. Drake House stormed home as convincing winners with Raleigh second and Scott third. The Tug of War, House Rounders and BBQ took place back at school. Raleigh won the Tug O’ War with Scott and Drake tying for the Rounders. The House Cup was narrowly won by Drake with Scott and Raleigh only 25 points behind.
School Activity Week rounded of another successful year. Year 10 set off on their work experience programme with a variety of very interesting placements, varying from the Storm Modelling Agency and The Telegraph newspaper in London to boat building and working with Michael Caine at Gidleigh Park. The venues for the other pupils were the National Aquarium in Plymouth, Woodlands, Cricket St Thomas, Offwell Woodland and the year 6 trip to London. Tiring but great fun, and we finished on the last morning with Ten Pin Bowling.
It has been a hetic year and the staff and pupils are more than ready for the summer break. Hopefully, we will get some much needed sunshine to recharge our batteries for September 4th.
Have a lovely and pleasant holiday.
Mrs A E M Macdonald-Dent.