Well, the tradition continues and last night saw an inspirational evening of professional music from our students. A packed audience of over 250 people delighted in the talent and standard of musicianship from the students. From the start, the evening was buzzing with energy and audience enthusiasm for what they were hearing. I was totally in awe at what the musicians achieved last night. Year 10 musicians rising to the challenge of their first Big Band evening. Year 13 demonstrating how it is done.
Team work, enthusiasm, hard work, listening. Even the audience joined in on a few numbers! To remember and highlight – Will Butcher on ‘Pencil Full of Lead’ (that trumpet bit). Jazz Nesbitt Larking and the wonderful Ben Spinoza. Josh Dear, both a wonderful trombone player and amazing singer. Joe Collins on guitar. Alex Salter, Sam Trendall and Stu Bowden with their rendition of ‘Sax and Violence’ (The Muppets, look up on You Tube!)
Thank you to all the staff who came and supported. That Simon Balle School has a band like this, and supports the musicians so well is inspirational. Music is alive at Simon Balle and the Big Band Evening was one part of that. As all there last night agreed, we know of no other school with a Big Band of that professional quality. The musicians were a credit to us all.
or….Food for the mind, poetry for the soul? Students of German have been recently engaged in a variety of creative activities designed to help them expand their minds, literacy and oracy skills and – potentially – also their waistlines!
After 6 months of German, Y8 students have created a collection of descriptive prose poems on the theme of Monsters. The document of their poems can be seen below:
For the second year, with the kind collaboration of Mrs Jones, Y9 students have set to creating a traditional German Gugelhupf chocolate marble cake using bilingual recipes. Please watch the video below.
The GCSE course requires students to show creativity and use a wide range of expressive vocabulary. In order to develop these skills, Y10 have been embarking on their own, somewhat more advanced poetic linguistic adventures on the theme of Home and Belonging using a poem by the 19th century North German poet Theodor Storm as inspiration. The e-book of their poems can also be seen below.
On Thursday we were privileged to be able to welcome Freddie Knoller to Simon Balle to speak to Sixth Form students about his personal experiences of living through the Holocaust. Our 93 year-old guest captivated students and staff for 90 minutes with a moving and often heart-wrenching account of his experiences in occupied Paris, fighting with the French Resistance, his time incarcerated in both Auschwitz-Birkenau and Bergen-Belson concentration camps before finally being liberated by British troops in 1945.
Hearing Freddie speak with such eloquence, passion and humour was an unforgettable experience for everyone present and our students spent a long time afterwards talking to him and buying copies of his book ‘Living with the Enemy’.
Many thanks to Freddie and the Holocaust Educational Trust for such an inspirational morning.
At lunch time today in our Library there was a showing of the video released by Worldbookday.com entitled ‘The Biggest Book Show on Earth’. Compered by popular presenters Dick and Dom it was full of tips and hints from illustrators and writers. Robert Muchamore, Terry Deary, Lauren St John and Maureen Johnson appeared with Emily Gravett and many others enthusiastically encouraging students to have a go at writing and illustrating.
Tomorrow at lunch time we have a Reading Competition of favourite passages from books which will be judged by the audience.
This term, Y9 have been working on GCSE chemistry. Students made short videos using stop-motion to help understand the topic of electrolysis.
Take a look at the three examples below – I was really impressed. They planned, filmed and edited the work over 2 lessons, combining their ICT skills and scientific understanding with great creativity!
Last night saw the annual Y9 options evening meeting which was a huge success. Students, parents and staff filled the school hall where this year’s options were outlined. As well as being shown the Powerpoint presentation below, hard copies of the options booklet were given – a digital copy can also be found here.
Y9 students and their parents/carers will be having meetings with members of SLT next Tuesday and Thursday to discuss any questions they may have and gain further guidance.
Four very enthusiastic boys from Y7 – Ben, Omar, Oliver and Jack – gave their second talk on Warhammer last Friday. They showed an interesting powerpoint and all had something to say about their favourite army.
They also brought in several models, pieces of kit and some of the paints involved in the game and displayed all these on the table. There were lots of questions afterwards which they answered effectively. All in all a great presentation, well done boys!
Yesterday our Y11 boys football team beat St Columba’s College in the semi-final of the County Cup 3-0. This is the first time the school have achieved this since 2000 – when most of this team hadn’t even started nursery school! Our goals, scored by Sameer, Kallum and Jono, were complemented by a last-minute penalty save by goalie Dan. The attitude and commitment of all the team, who train every week, was amazing and as a school we should be proud of them…… I certainly am.
It all shows how far this group have progressed – their first fixture in Y7 was an 11-0 defeat in the same competition against Dame Alice Owen’s School. Five years later…..we reach the final. The final is to be played on Thursday 3rd April 7.00pm kick off at the Letchworth County Ground. It would be fantastic to see lots of staff and students there supporting the team as they try to win the County Cup for the first time. We are hoping to put a live text feed from the match on the school website so that those unable to travel can keep up to date with events.
GCSE exams are fast approaching and (with only 11 weeks to go) lots of our Y11 students have begun to attend our revision workshops. These are held each week in G2 – with all subjects catered for. New revision ideas boards have been created around school to inspire the students to try lots of different revision methods. As you can see from the photos below sessions have been well attended – but there is always room for more! Revision packs are also available to purchase for those in need of handy and useful tools – students can contact myself or Mr Pooley for more information.