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Dyson Library Opening

Posted: 16th March 22

Stormont had a very special visitor: Megan Rix, the children’s author.  Her visit coincided with the official opening of Stormont’s newly refurbished Dyson Library funded by the amazing SPA.  The room had seen better days and the original library was too small so the decision to reinstate it into the main house was unanimous.   After much repair, decoration, a new heating and cooling system and lighting, the room was transformed with loving care overseen by the Head, Miss Louise Martin.

The Dyson Library will be used as a study area and a relaxing reading space with an improved stock of books for all ages from Reception to Year 6.  Many of the original features have been retained and it will be a great resource for the girls’ academic learning.   The vaulted wooden ceiling lends itself to the room creating drama and interest.  A big shout-out goes to the librarians at Queenswood School, Manor Lodge and Lochinver House for their help in planning and implementing the changes.

To enhance the day, Stormont decided to slightly delay their World Book Day event coordinated by the Head of English, Mrs Natalie Rose.   The whole school arrived in costume with an animal theme inspired by Megan Rix’s stories which are centred around animal heroes.  Her two golden retrievers made an appearance on the day, Freya and Ellie, who inspire her books.   She trains them to help with mobility.

It was a colourful display of costumes and not too many duplicates so the depth of knowledge of books about animals or have animal characters is brilliant.   The teachers played their part and joined in the fun.

Megan Rix is an author but also is a user of sign language.  She is herself partially deaf and so is one of her book characters and understands the difficulties that can be experienced.  She explained how to use sign language to the girls in Pre-Prep.

On arrival, the girls’ colourful costumes created lots of ‘wow’ moments in the corridors at Stormont.  From assembly, girls took away important messages about reading from MC Grammar: reading can transport you, reading can make you feel free – reading is amazing!

In class, girls shared the books and authors who inspired their costumes – as did the teachers!

At the official opening of the Dyson Library, Megan spoke about her life and how she became an author.  Parents were invited who had been on the SPA Committee helping raise the funds for the renovation and Year 6 pupils to represent Stormont School.


Netball Competition

Posted: 4th February 22

Our U11 netball team competed in the North London Collegiate School Netball Tournament at the weekend at which there were 21 schools divided into 4 groups. This is the first big tournament that any of them have played in for two years and was a perfect opportunity to get into competing. Stormont School has an enviable reputation for successful netball and although they didn’t win the overall tournament, they came second out of twenty-one schools.

All the girls played brilliantly with determination and lots of skill. After playing all the group matches the Stormont team were re-seeded into the top group for round 2. The team went on to win their four matches, 4-1, 6-0, 6-0 and 4-1; impressive results.

This put us into the Championship for the re-seeded round where we drew 2-2, won 5-0, drew 3-3, won 4-0 and lastly won 6-0. The competition was fierce and it should be pointed out that they didn’t lose one match going through the group rounds.

The Team came 2nd overall, losing out to Newland House who we congratulate on an outstanding win. It is with pride that our team played so well against such talented schools and Katriel A came away with the Most Valuable Player awarded by Mrs P, Head of P.E.

The team, Olivia E, Verity H, Lucy A, Thea H-S, Katriel A, Caitlin F, Lily F, Reva T, Sophie Pearce & River R all played extremely well. Well done girls!


Haileybury Choral Competition 2022

Posted: 4th February 22

Stormont Singers were invited to enter the Haileybury Choral Competition and Head of Music, Mr Pegden, grabbed the chance with both hands. Pupils and staff spent the day at Haileybury in Ware to perform their chosen song, ‘Make Your Own Kind of Music’ first recorded by Cass Elliot of Mamas and Papas fame. They sang it beautifully.

Stormont Singers is a voluntary attended group of children at Stormont School who enjoy singing in their lunch time across Years 3 to 4.   As part of the competition each school was given an additional song to learn prior to the event and then perform at the competition as a whole choir. Each of the five schools had a Masterclass with the Head of Choral Music and Voice, Andrew O’Brien, and time to practice throughout the day. It was a fabulous day and we were privileged to be able to perform in Chapel and be part of the first competition of its kind open to primary schools.

One of the many highlights was lunch in the huge dining room and the choice on offer was outstanding.  After lunch fuelled with superb food, the girls and staff were able to walk around the grounds and were entertained by many accomplished musicians in The Bradby Hall. Pupils shared their music experiences with the girls and played such complex pieces but made it look effortless. Such talent was in abundance it was really inspiring to be part of a school day at Haileybury.

A win evaded us this time but the experience was invaluable and has built confidence in our pupils and their sense of achievement. Performing at a large event in front of an audience unknown to the girls was such a great experience.  Chapel was impressive with its domed ceiling enabling the voice of Stormont to achieve a different sound.  At the other end was the huge organ that dominated the entire wall and accompanied the choir performance.

Competing as a choir was knew to them and has given them the taste for performing. Also collaborating with other choirs on a large scale was pretty impressive for the age group of 8 to 10 and something that doesn’t come along very often at this age.

They have all come away with a sense of pride in their ability and an opportunity to explore their future talents.

 


Stormont Singers at Wyllyotts Theatre

Posted: 7th December 21

Stormont Singers choir were invited to take part in the Hertfordshire Showband performance at The Wyllyotts Theatre in Potters Bar, Hertfordshire. This is the first time that this choir had performed at a theatre and did so in front of a packed audience. They rose to the occasion and it was a great success.

Girls from Years 4 to 6 can join the school choir and is always well attended. They rehearse at lunchtimes with the Head of Music at Stormont School and perform concerts for parents and families at different times of the year. To be able to be in a much bigger arena was great for their confidence and Mr Nick Pegden said “When the invite was received it was a definite yes from the school. The girls are always enthusiastic and love to learn new songs. They all worked so hard and I am very proud of them all.”

The Hertfordshire Showband is based in Potters Bar Hertfordshire, and is one of the UK’s most successful marching bands. The 60 strong band is administered by the Hertfordshire Band Academy and caters for young people and adults. They put on ‘The Show Must Go On’ at the theatre and invited the Stormont School choir to sing. Stormont Singers sang two songs splendidly and then added some festive cheer towards the end.

A Year 5 parent said “I personally want to congratulate the School Choir for such a marvellous performance. It was a joy to listen to and especially when so many children were involved and sang so beautifully and harmoniously. They all did the School and their parents proud!

“These are the memories of our kids being at school that last a lifetime and we are truly grateful for the experience. Thank you for working in your spare time to make this possible. We loved watching Isha.” said a Year 4 parent.

Miss Louise Martin, Head of Stormont School said, “I couldn’t be prouder of the children and my staff who have worked so hard with the girls to achieve such a high standard of performing. Well done everyone.”


Pre-Prep Nativity

Posted: 2nd December 21

We are super proud of our Pre-Prep this week (and every week) who have performed their nativity play over two days.  They have been working hard in their rehearsals and when it came to it, they were outstanding.   Such confident little girls who have enjoyed every minute on stage with staff and families watching.    Their enthusiasm was contagious and raised a smile across the faces of the audience, even though face masks were worn, we can tell by the eyes.  The girls were word perfect and arrived on stage at the right time full of promise.  It was a colourful spectacle of farmyard animals, angels, shepherds, soldiers and of course Mary and Joseph.   The staff have been amazing putting this together and whilst it is something they do every year, the narrative is different each time and takes a lot of time and effort.  So applause goes to them.

It has been great to bring everyone together for this special time of year to celebrate life and being kind and supportive of each other.   The mince pies and a nice cuppa went down a treat with the parents and grandparents after the performances, all supplied by the Stormont kitchen staff, thank you.    A perfect start to the festive season.


Art Exhibition

Posted: 25th November 21

Take a trip and join our online Art Exhibition to view some stunning work by the pupils at Stormont School.  From Reception to Year 6 every child is engaged in all types of medium to create some truly amazing work under the expert tuition of Mrs Burgess, our fabulous art teacher.

The school has its own large dedicated art room fully stocked for exploration of the arts.  Next to that is our quaint pottery room with its own kiln so that every item produced by your child is made from basic clay and transformed into something quite unique with beautiful decoration.  You need to see this to believe it!   Who wouldn’t want their very own 3D brightly coloured and glazed cockerel for the kitchen.

And on to the DT room where your child can make a model car with turning wheels and a battery.  Yes, it really works.  The tools on offer to the girls gives them the skills to use in a safe and controlled area, there is no stereotyping here.  Girls can do anything at Stormont School.


U9 Independent Schools Gymnastics Association (ISGA) Champions

Posted: 25th November 21

Congratulations go to both the U9 and U11 gymnastics teams at Stormont School in The National ISGA (Independent Schools Gymnastics Association) NOVICE 2 piece at Lady Eleanor Holles School, Hampton. Up against six other schools, the U9 team were first in the U9 Novice Championships with Christina A receiving the silver medal and Lilly L being placed 4th overall. The U11 team came 5th overall in the NOVICE 2 piece with Lucy A placed 3rd overall and Sophie P 7th. The ISGA 2 piece consists of 2 disciplines; a set floor routine and a voluntary vault.

This prestigious competition returned to the calendar and Stormont took this great opportunity to

ISGA 2021 Champions
U9 and U11 gymnastics teams compete at ISGA 2021

compete after almost two years absence due to COVID restrictions. Stormont School was thrilled to be able to send two teams and we thank the parents who took the time to travel to Twickenham to support their children. The school is super proud of their achievements. Mrs Sarah Portsmouth, Head of PE, said “We are so proud of all the girls who have worked incredibly hard to achieve this amazing result”.

Gymnastics is included in PE lessons from Reception to Year 6 at Stormont. There are gymnastics camps in the holidays and after school gymnastics clubs for all ages. There is also a club at weekends run by one of the parents at the school. In fact, the Johnston Sports Hall was originally opened by Olympic medal winner, Beth Tweddle, in 2009 so its credentials are long established. Many winners and participants have trod the stairs down to the sports hall over the years.

Christina A, an accomplished gymnast outside of school, won the silver medal in the U9 Novice Championships. She performed a squat through vault scoring 7.90 out of 10 points and in the set floor routine, she scored 8.85 out of 10. Christina said “I was so excited to win the silver medal in the U9 Novice competition at the National ISGA Championships”.


Summer Music Concert

Posted: 30th June 21

What a fantastic start to Wednesday. So many talented musicians got together for the Stormont School Summer Concert. All the performers worked so hard to prepare for the event, a major contribution to the school calendar.

Due to COVID-19 restrictions an audience wasn’t possible and all the performers had to keep to their bubbles but with lots of rehearsals and planning it went brilliantly. The concert was recorded so that parents are able to watch at their leisure. The singers were so entertaining and certainly set the tone. The range of instruments played included piano, saxophone, guitar, clarinet, drums, violin and the flute, all the girls were outstanding. Many of the music teachers also performed to accompany on the piano or guitar.

Girls as young as 7 played on the stage as soloists, some only just starting to learn their instrument this year. The standard of the pupils’ achievements is high at Stormont and all are encouraged to try their best and introduce instruments such as the saxophone, drums or electric guitar. These aren’t always seen as a girl’s ambition to play but at Stormont it is normal. The saying is always, give it a go, take a risk!

Pupils learn many instruments at Stormont School from Year 2 and are taught by peripatetic teachers employed by the school in the dedicated Millennium Building where there are two practice rooms in the Music Studio. The Music Department has a strong presence at Stormont and each class from Reception through to Year 6 is taught music on the timetable every week. There is also a recorder club running on Teams but Stormont can’t wait to get back to having their clubs before school, at lunchtimes and after school. Rock choir, rock band, ensembles, orchestra and all manner of bands or groups are part of the school week.

Mr Nick Pegden, Head of Music, said “I am proud of all the girls’ performances, for some it was the first time on a school stage. They have all been fantastic and I look forward to working with them throughout their time here. Keep up the good work!”


Sports Day

Posted: 29th June 21

The first event at Stormont went ahead at last and everyone was so excited. The Pre-Prep and Prep sports days were held on the school field on Thursday, 24th June. The weather was great, not too hot and not too cold. It was unfortunate that we could not have the parents because of restrictions in place during the COVID-19 lockdown but the whole day was a great success.

Prep were first in the morning but the preparations were being made long before that. The PE department had put so much work into working with the girls leading up to the day. All the equipment was transported early morning ready for the big day. The field had been cut and the lines marked out in advance, results spreadsheets were prepared to record the house scores and staff were given their roles.

Traditional races such as the egg and spoon race and the sack race were included alongside running in and out of poles and the relay races at the end of each event. All the school houses, St Andrew, St George and St Patrick were represented in every race and the girls loved the competition. Healthy rivalry exists but all competitors are applauded for their efforts.

The Pre-Prep had their turn in the afternoon and for some it was the first time, but you wouldn’t have known. They all performed brilliantly. There could be some athletes of the future emerging!
A great day was had by all.


Year 5 Residential Trip at Cuffley Camp

Posted: 24th June 21

Like every other school in the country planning trips of any kind has been beset with disappointment but not this time. Stormont School achieved what seemed like the impossible this month with a residential trip for 21 excited girls. Even better, they didn’t have to travel on a motorway in a coach to get there, the camp is literally on the doorstep in Hertfordshire, which meant more time enjoying the grounds! Cuffley Camp was under new management just before the start of lockdown and reopened very recently to schools.

Three fun-packed days and two nights were booked with the girls staying in dormitories with their friends. Tomahawk (axe throwing) seemed to slice opinion, laser quest was enlightening and camouflage and concealment wasn’t apparent! So much to experience but the highlights of this trip were making memories sitting round the campfire, night walks, rock climbing and fire lighting. The teamwork tasks were challenging and will build their skills in problem solving for the future. Growth mindset is part of the school day at Stormont School and all the girls were positively encouraged to try everything once, take a risk and leap into the unknown.

At this girls’ only school the pupils benefit from learning in a safe environment, get to test their resilience, gain confidence and take risks without distraction. Miss Martin, Head of Stormont School, surprised all the girls with a visit one afternoon, she said “It has been a tremendous opportunity for them, bringing the curriculum to life and enhance learning outside of the classroom is so important.”

The girls loved sleeping in the new cabins, before bed on the first night they sat round the campfire which they learnt how to build, singing songs and eating S’mores. The next day they had the opportunity to put their knowledge into practice when they had to build their own fire, light it and toast marshmallows. The Year 5 Form Tutor, Madame Allin, said “The trip was a lot of fun and it brought us all closer to nature and to each other at the same time. It is fabulous to have been able to make fond memories. The trip is just what the girls needed after a year of interruption with lockdown.”

Miss Stephens, Head of Learning Support, said “It was great to see all the girls having fun in the great outdoors, try new activities and learning to work together which is something that they have all missed out on due to COVID-19.”

Shanti B said “It was a good experience of being out of your comfort zone, the wall climbing challenged me.” Bella F said “I would recommend this to another school because you learn loads of new things and learn how to survive in the wild.”


Contact Details

Stormont School

OPEN MORNING

Our next Open Morning is on Thursday, 19th May between 9.00 and 11.00am.     You are warmly invited to attend, please use the booking form below to book your place or arrange a call back. We are taking registrations for future Reception classes, click  here for the registration form.

We look forward to meeting you.