Charters News Autumn Term 2013 This autumn’s production of The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe was brought to life with outstanding imagination and technical expertise. Dramatic lighting and though provoking sets transformed the school hall into the mystical, wintery world of Narnia while the audience, seated ‘in the round’, were entertained by a witty script and a talented cast of pupils drawn from all year groups.
The unsung heros of the Dining Hall tempted staff and students with tasty festive food and outfits to match the season.
Ten charming Charters’ Santas joined in a charitable dash through Swinley Forest to raise money for Thames Hospice Care. Sophie Quirk, year 7, observed, “The Santa Dash was really funny because everyone was in a Santa suit and some of the people running looked really ridiculous, especially some of the Christmas puddings.”
by Martyn Parker and Richard Pilgrim
As we come to the end of a busy Autumn Term at Charters, we wanted to give you some examples of how the Charters community has reflected the school motto Unity – Respect – Excellence in its activities and events so far this year: Unity
The warm welcome given to Mr Harvey, Dr Green and Miss Hilderley at the end of their epic cycle ride from Tirabad to Charters The spectacular production of The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe, showcasing the talent and hard work of students, staff and parents The first alumni events in Summer 2013 for the Classes of 2001-05 and of 1963 Establishing the Charters’ Friends group
Curriculum Enrichment Day on planning local cycleways by Year 7 students and presentations to our local Parish Councils on this subject Our Information Evening for Parents about drugs Continuing to make our buildings more energy efficient
Examination results to shout about! – Hot off the press this week is Ofsted’s analysis of the progress our Year 11 students made this summer that rates our performance at the 11th percentile nationally Seven successful Oxbridge candidates Well done to Year 7 for an excellent first term. Here is a picture of their individual hands just before they joined us:
And we could go on…… but we’ll leave you to find out about all the exciting activities that have occurred so far this year by reading on. Instead, we just quickly want to tell you what our main priorities are for the rest of this academic year: Unity
All members of the school community – pupils, staff, governors and parents – will be united in sharing a common purpose: to achieve their personal best, to pursue lifelong learning, to develop and model respect for themselves and others and play a significant role in the life of the local community; and they will be able to articulate this common purpose and support each other to achieve these goals.
Our school will be characterised by positive, appropriate, productive and warm relationships strengthened by emotional and physical resilience. We will encourage all members of the community to reflect on and develop their relationships with each other to promote tolerance and understanding.
All members of the school community will strive to achieve excellence - their personal best in all areas of school life: academically, in extra-curricular activities and through their embodiment of positive attitudes and qualities.
Key Priorities 2013-14 Information, Advice and Guidance (IAG) – every student receives clear, relevant IAG at the appropriate time to enable effective decisions about their future.
We will provide clear advice and guidance setting out our expectations concerning how pupils should interact with one another, both verbally and via new media.
Academic results – the school continues to set challenging targets and achieves, year on year, strong value-added results within the top 10-15% of similar schools nationally.
We would like to say farewell and good luck to Miss Byrne (Teacher of Drama and Music) who is leaving us at the end of this term to pursue her love of teaching musical theatre. We would like to thank her for all her hard work during her time at Charters, and wish her every success in her future career. Wishing all parents, students and staff a very Merry Christmas and a Happy and Peaceful New Year! For term dates see www.chartersschool.org.uk/term-dates
Outside the Classroom
Dedicated staff and enthusiastic pupils have participated in a range of events outside of the classroom demonstrating their talent and ability to the wider world. In the summer a group of forty students went to Paris on Music Tour. The pupils worked very hard in the run up to the tour, spending several weekends at school rehearsing. This meant that the standard of music making was very high and that pupils were ready to tackle the concerts waiting for them in Paris. Whilst on tour the group performed four concerts, each providing different challenges and experience. The week started with a performance at Euro Disney, where they performed a mix of secular pieces to a busy audience. The second concert was in the Luxembourg Gardens, where both tourists and Parisian locals sat back around the band stand to watch the concert. Passers-by stopped on their strolls around the grounds to listen to Charters’ students perform, meeting each rendition with tumultuous applause. In between students enjoyed the rides at Disney; a visit to the Louvre and soaking up the sun on the Paris Plage. But it wasn’t just the sightseeing that gave them experience of French culture – they were also lucky enough to perform in two fantastic French churches.
An Indian Summer Kerala, India was this summer’s destination for the World Challenge group... Hiking over mountains through monsoon season, volunteering at an orphanage where students got to put their love of sports to good use and finally getting to relax in the idyllic surroundings of Kochin made for a fantastic trip for everyone involved. The students were very impressive and took turns leading from day to day, taking on responsibilities such as organising transport, food and leading the group. Although many students found the monsoon conditions a challenge they also said the views and experience itself was ‘completely worth it’.
At Le Madeleine, they performed some wonderful pieces of music, which were complemented by the stunning acoustics of the building, to a packed audience, of four to five hundred people. One member of the audience enjoyed it so much that he researched the school’s email address and sent a message after he returned home all the way from New York to say how much he enjoyed the concert. The second church concert was in the under-stated American church, which, hidden from view of the street, is a lovely secluded church with a beautiful interior. This was the final concert, and for some of the pupils the most enjoyable, as the standard of performing was at an all-time high. Follow @ChartersCareers on Twitter for latest career opportunities
Outside the Classroom cont’d...
run once Queen Elizabeth 1 became Queen. It was really amazing to see where they used to escape down ladders etc. We also made bows and arrows with twigs and string to look like the ones they would have used in the army. Finally, the battle was on! Trebuchets at the ready and water balloons filled. Luckily, our group was superior and thrashed the other groups. I thoroughly enjoyed this trip and I’m sure everyone else did to!’
A Rocky Road Meanwhile our Year 12 geologists were in Kimmeridge Bay to learn about simple geological structures in the field. Despite storms that week it did not rain although it was very windy. The beach was accessible as the tide went out and it was littered with fossils from the very crumbly cliffs. Students measured strike and dip on an anticline, and looked at jointing and then the staff barbequed lunch for all. Our musicians weren’t the only group to visit Paris, over half term 78 Year 8 language students spent three days enjoying the sights and sounds of the magical French capital. On arrival they headed to Tour Montparnasse to take photos of the city from its 210m peak. Then, it was straight to the Trocadero and a pit stop tour of the Arc de Triomphe and the Champs Elysées.
They also saw some faults. The second one looked like the picture in the textbook. Hammers were not allowed on that bit of coast but everyone enjoyed themselves and felt like real geologists.
Our pupils were treated to a food appreciation event in the evening where they tried snails and some French cheeses. On the Monday, students were entertained by Astérix and the Obélix at their theme park and, in the evening, a disco and activities were laid on by the French animateurs. Finally, they headed home on Tuesday via a tour of the Stade de France. A fantastic time was had by all and everyone learnt lots of new French phrases, even the teachers!
Armed and Ready An exciting day experiencing different types of Medieval Warfare was enjoyed by some gifted and talented year 8 students at Ufton Court, near Reading. Sophie Maher 8S writes, ‘Once we got there the Ufton Court team taught us how to make simple clove hitch knots and square lashing knots to be used in making our giant trebuchets. After this we had lunch which we ate in our four groups so that we could discuss battle plans. In the afternoon we visited Ufton Court Manor which was used to look after priests on the
A day with Michael Palin Year 12 Geographers had the opportunity to attend a lecture series at the Institute of Education based on five case studies from around the world. The keynote speaker was Michael Palin, better known to students’ parents from his Monty Python days and TV travelogues. Eminently qualified to speak, as a BAFTA fellow, comedian and former President of the Geographical Association, he ended the day with an inspiring and insightful lecture on 'Brazil' where he told a story through images based on his journey through different regions in the country.
To find out about the Sixth Form see www.chartersschool.org.uk/6th-form
A Bird’s Eye View
capital cities and also their skills with OS maps.
40 music students from Years 9 - 13 went to hear the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra at Cadogan Hall. The programme consisted of Tchaikovsky's 5th Symphony, Ravel's haunting Le Tombeau de Couperin, and Elgar's famous Cello Concerto, played by Jamie Walton. Cadogan hall, just off Sloane Square, is a wonderful intimate concert venue and the students had fantastic seats, right above the orchestra on either side of the stage. The orchestra played superbly well, under the baton of Christoph Koenig
Our fantastic teams finished 2nd, 3rd and 4th and the pupils involved should be very proud of themselves, The pupils who took part were: Ishan Chawla, Isabella Somerville, Amirah Holmer, Tom Flower, Myles Kearsley, Angel Thomas, Sean Frost, Conor Murphy and Henry Roberts.
Best Speaker, Best Team In the annual Rotary Club Public Speaking competition held at St George’s School, Ascot, Charters’ students won the prize for best intermediate speaker: Alix Webster, and best intermediate team: Piper Barrett, Hannah Heitplatz, and Frankie Killen, and will now go on to represent the Ascot area in the zone finals. Congratulations to all who took part.
Microorganisms and crystals Rob Gray 12LS writes of a recent Biology visit, ‘In biology at school I always thought mastering the art of using a microscope is a relatively easy task, or so I thought. On a recent trip to Reading University, courtesy of the biology department, the dozen or so 6th formers lucky enough to be on this trip were introduced to the electron microscope that resided deep within the impressive science department of the university. Capable of magnifying objects 500,000 times, this complicated and rather large machine both overwhelmed and fascinated me at the same time. I was unaware of the long process required to prepare samples for viewing under the microscope, and I also learnt about how the microscope works: an electron gun fires volleys of electrons at the sample to produce an image where the electrons hit the specimen. This trip has made me aware of new areas of the subject that I had little knowledge of previously and I would like to thank the teachers who organised the trip for the chance to see such fascinating machine working in real life, a much better experience than reading about it in a textbook. This was an enjoyable trip that I have learnt a lot from.’
Rotary Club Public Speaking
TeenTech Teen Tech
Testing Times Nine pupils from year 8,9 and 10, took part in the annual Geographical Association’s Worldwise Quiz competing against 26 teams from 16 other schools. The three Charters’ teams which were comprised of one pupil from each year group faced six different quiz rounds that tested their geographical general knowledge including flags and
A day of interactive challenges and prizes for our budding engineers, whose fantastic teamwork and business plan for a ‘Live Life’ app won special praise from the judges and an award for best logo design.
For Learning Gateway queries see www.chartersschool.org.uk/gateway
Charters Connect â€Ś
the alumni society of Charters School
Class of 2001-2005 Just before the Summer holidays former students reunited and reminisced over drinks and nibbles in the school library. Tours of the school were available and staff came along to catch up with their former pupils. It was a great evening and more are planned for 2014.
Join ChartersConnect on Linkedin, follow us on Facebook or on www.twitter.com@chartersschool
Now we are 30 ….! Among the events planned for 2014 is a reunion for alumni who will be celebrating their 30th birthday! So if this includes you please update your contact details via the alumni section of the school website so we can send you your invitation. If you need your log in details, email us on our new address firstname.lastname@example.org Whether you left us after Sixth Form or earlier, for those who celebrate the ‘Big Three 0’ between September 2013 and August 2014, you will be invited to join staff and others from your year group at Charters School on the evening of Friday 9 May 2014. In the meantime, zoom in on these images to see how many faces you recognise!
Save the date! Friday 9 May 2014
If you would like help organising a reunion for your year group, please email email@example.com
National Cross Country Finals Success We are immensely proud of our Inter and Junior Girls’ Cross Country teams who made it through all the preliminary rounds to represent Charters in the National Finals. The girls only realised what a ‘big deal’ the National Event was when they were given their unique chip IDs. The race itself was tough! The best 144 girls in England, representing 24 teams, launched themselves into a 15 minute cross country run. Each member of both teams ran brilliantly and contributed the the overall success. The Inter girls came 10th overall and the Junior girls came 9th overall in the country. In addition, both teams are the BEST teams out of those in the South West region. Finally, of special note Morven Goodrum came 3rd overall, only beaten by girls who already represent England Schools; a phenomenal achievement. If you would like to join the XCountry Club, boys and girls, and would enjoy going to the Look Out in Bracknell on Mondays in search of trails to explore, see Dr Green to sign up.
Inter Girls Cross Country Team
Tirabad Sports Tour 'It was a really great opportunity and really fun' (Rosie Jenkinson) 'Fun, exciting and sporty!!!' (Ali Povey) Year 8 and 9 sporty pupils set off for Tirabad Centre ready for a week of outdoor adventure and competitive Hockey and Netball fixtures. The week was a great success with some high class Netball and Hockey Fixtures played. The students’ behavior was a credit to the school; as was their sporting prowess. Overall we had two Netball and one Hockey victory, with two other close contests which were narrowly lost.
Junior Girls Cross Country Team
The students also took part in Caving, Kayaking and Mountain Walking where they really showed their ability to work as a team. In addition they saw the Scarlett Rugby team play in the Heineken Cup final; even being part of the pre- game parade around the pitch! A great week, well done all! Miss Holt & Mr Hancock