Safari Experience 2019.12.17
On 17th December, Reception, Year 1 and 2 met 'Safari Stu' and his awesome animals. The children's favourites included a lesser hedgehog tenrec , a royal python and a panther chameleon from Madagascar. Year 2 have enjoyed their 'Sensational Safari' topic this half term and it was great that all of the EYFS and KS1 children could benefit from the visit. Safari Stu commented on how impressive all of the St Alban's children were with the animals. Our thanks to Safari Stu for showing all the animals.
Choir performing at Great St Mary’s
This was really a very special treat for the children as they sang to raise money for three charities supported by the Cambridge Rotary Club. The children were fantastic, and, our thanks to Rosa’s and Eva’s dad for accompanying the choir on the piano and of course to Mrs Burrows for arranging our participation.
Below is an email Mrs Burrows received from the Rotary Club:
An enormous thank you to you and your children for the music last night. They participated with great enthusiasm as always. There was a lovely atmosphere about the Concert and that emanated from the children’s happy involvement. I personally loved 'Christmas Cake' - what a lovely piece. And I am glad we managed to get the music sorted for ‘Donkey’ with its amusing actions.
Please say thank you to everyone involved.
Thank you to you personally for your continued support for this event.
St Clement’s Church visit 2019.12.04
Year 2, 3 and 4 had a great morning taking part in an Advent workshop at St Clement's Church on Wednesday. When they arrived at the Church they listened attentively to the Nativity story. They then took part in different Advent activities, including clay modelling and paper crafts. Children were able to bring home a beautiful bag with a range of items which they collected to remind them of different parts of the Nativity story. Thank you to St Clement's, and Victoria for inviting us to take part in the workshop.
Year3 Greek Myths - Autumn 2019
This half term (October-December 2019), Year 3 have been looking at Greek Myths and have written their own stories inspired by these. They were too good not to share, so please enjoy reading some extracts from their stories.
Year4 West Stow Trip 2019.11.08
Year 4 visited the Anglo-Saxon village West Stow, in Bury Saint Edmunds on 8th November. The children had a wonderful day exploring the Saxon houses, farmland and the artefact museum. They even managed to dress-up as real-life Saxon villagers! Overall, the class represented St Alban’s extremely well and asked the trip leaders some brilliant questions about the village. Well done Year 4!
Year 3 Flag Fen Archaeology Park Trip 2019.10.30
Y3 visited Flag Fen Archaeology park in Peterborough to support their topic work on Prehistoric Britain. The children took part in lots of activities including: sorting artefacts; making Bronze Age pottery; viewing the must boats and causeway which have been preserved and listening to a traditional story in an Iron Age round house around a fire. It was a thoroughly enjoyable day for all. Thank you Year 3 for representing the school so well with your excellent questions, enthusiasm and behaviour.
The Science Image Awards
Last year, Year 5 & 6 took part in the LMB’s Cambridgeshire school’s Science Image Awards. Although St Alban’s did not manage to win the competition, it was another great experience for our school. All of the submitted entries, from all of the schools that entered, can now be seen on the LMB website:
You can also see LMB’s news story about the competition and about the winning entries on the link below:
Welcome to three trainee teachers from the George Mason University in Virginia USA
Amanda (with Year3): Hello! My name is Amanda Ervin and I am a graduate student at George Mason University (GMU). I live in Woodbridge, Virginia and I attended GMU for undergraduate as well. I've worked with children all of all ages, but have found joy in working with primary ages. I love movies and spending time with friends. I can't wait to explore Cambridge and more while I'm here for the next several weeks!
Maddi (with Year2): Hi! I'm Maddi Williams. I'm also a graduate student at GMU. I currently live in Fairfax, Virginia but I grew up in Charlottesville, Virginia. My interests include listening to music, reading, watching movies, spending time with friends and dancing. I taught dance to 3-6 year old children as a part time job last year. While I am abroad I am planning on visiting London and Dublin, Ireland. I'm looking forward to getting to know everyone and to be assisting at St. Alban's.
Lydia (with Year1): Hello! My name is Lydia Alexander. I am an alumni and graduate student at George Mason University. My Bachelor's degree is in Integrative Studies with a concentration of Elementary Education and a minor in mild disabilities. I currently live in Northern Virginia but was raised in Albany, New York. I enjoy photography, traveling and caring after animals. I am excited to be a part of the St. Alban's family during this study abroad experience!
Pilgrims to celebrate mass in the basilica of Our Lady of Walsingham
On Monday 15th July the schools from Cambridge; St Alban’s, St Laurence and St Bede’s joined other pilgrims to celebrate mass in the basilica of Our Lady of Walsingham, on the feast of St Bonaventure.
The children started their pilgrim from the station and walked along the 1 mile Pilgrim Way before reaching the shrine.
The schools were blessed with a lovely day and the children were able to picnic in the grounds before visiting the Slipper Chapel and looking at the Stations of the Cross. The shop also proved to be a big success as the children enjoyed seeing the array of medals, rosary beads etc.
The mass was a very spiritual experience for the children as they participated with the readings and serving on the altar. All school were very respectful and prayerful and this was acknowledged by other pilgrims and Sister Jane who said,” Please let the children know that we were impressed that they behaved so well”.
Afterwards all three schools went for a lovely dip in the water at Wells on Sea, and everyone enjoyed a delicious ice cream in the sun too.
Three Peaks Challenge 2019.07.04
Please keep in your prayers for our intrepid fathers and mothers who are doing the Three Peaks Challenge this weekend (6th-7th July). The school gave them a big send off and we look forward to seeing them returning back to school on Monday 8th July with Alban the bear.
Best in the county - Netball
The school was delighted to receive the prestigious award of Cambridgeshire Netball Primary of the Year at a recent presentation. Well done children as this means St Alban’s has made a clean sweep of all the primary netball awards in Cambridge, including Coach of the Year, who is of course Floria. Congratulations Floria, Hannah and all the children for this tremendous achievement.
Choir at West Road 2019.06.14
Congratulations to the school choir for their fantastic performance last week at West Road. The choir joined a number of Cambridge schools and sang for over an hour and they had the honour to open the show with “Putting on the Ritz”. Well done children and thanks to Mrs Burrows for her inspiration.
School Council Members' Hoardings visit 2019.06.17
On Monday 17th June the School Council members went to visit Tennis Court Road building site as the school designed pictures for a hoarding project about bio-chemical research. The project that St Alban’s participated in was called the HADAR project. The children were given hi-vis jackets and hard hats to wear which the company supplied for them. After the children put on the hard hats and the hi-vis jackets they went to look at the hoardings. They saw many wonderful hoardings and took many pictures for the school website. They were then presented with a gift bag which included a notebook, pen and ruler as a thank you for taking part in the project.
By Reuben and Zuzanna G (Year 6 School Council reps)
Congratulations Netball A Team!
Congratulations to the netball A Team who went to the city finals this week and won the tournament without losing a goal and a 100% victory. This is a tremendous achievement but their respect for other teams and the friendship they showed was just as pleasing. Congratulations to Floria and Hannah for all their coaching. The team now progresses on to the regional finals in May.
St Alban’s Science Week March 2019
St Albans celebrated the subject of science through our annual science week. Once again, the children had the opportunity to engage in a range of experiments and activities related to all areas of science.
Some of the activities included:
Recreating the digestive system and using microscopes to study body parts, designing, building and testing rockets at the Department of engineering,
designing lava lamps, bridge building,
creating and testing boat wind sails,
building DNA models,
fingerprint and crime scene investigations,
evidence building and DNA fruit extraction,
weather & climate change talks,
sound workshops and creating ‘silly putty’
In addition to the hands on activities, KS1 and KS2 enjoyed individual Science Shows delivered by Captain Calamity.
Classes also participated in a variety of trips to study different areas of science. Outreach visits included trips to The Botanical Gardens, Fitzwilliam Museum, Sedgwick Museum of Earth Sciences, The Cambridge University Department of Chemistry (Table Talk lecture by Dr Worther) and Engineering and St Mary’s Secondary School science department.
Our science week drew to a close with a whole school dress-up day, where the children dressed up in a variety of striking science outfits. Once again, well done to all the children for making an exceptional effort with their science costumes.
A sincere thank you to all the MRC Laboratory of Molecular Biology Institute, the The European Centre for Medium-Range Weather Forecasts (ECMWF), Cambridge University’s Department of Chemistry and Engineering, St Mary’s Secondary School, Kinetic Science, Cambridge Science Centre, Captain Calamity, AstraZeneca, STEM and all the parents and volunteers who supported the school during this special week!
Finally, a very special thank you to Mrs Calley for all her hard work and support in the build up to this year’s science week. Your help has been greatly appreciated.
Science Image Competition February 2019
Over the last two weeks, children in Year 5 and Year 6 have been representing St Albans in the local MRC Laboratory of Molecular Biology (LMB) Science Image Awards.
During the two week period, the children were required to use a hand-held digital microscope (DinoLite) to take images of biological samples (including insects, plants and leaves), which they collected. Following this, a selection of images were carefully selected and then submitted to the LMB to be used in the competition. The winning school, which will be announced towards the end of the academic year, will be awarded with a digital imaging device. Second and third placed schools will also be awarded with science-related prizes. Well done children for representing the school in this wonderful competition and thank you to the LMB for giving St Albans the chance to take part in the Science competition.
For further information regarding the competition and to view some of last year’s sample images, please visit:
St Alban’s in the top 1% of schools for maths and the top 3% for phonics!
We are delighted to have received two letters this year from the Rt Hon Damian Hinds MP, Secretary of State for Education and Rt Hon Nick Gibb MP, Minister of State for School Standards. In both letters the school is complimented for its approach to teaching and for achieving the very high standard of a 100% pass rate in both subject areas.
We are all very proud of our children and our thanks to the children, staff and parents for their continuous focus on raising standards at St Alban’s.
|Letter from Minister of State for School Standards Maths 2019.02.09||[pdf 540KB]|
|Letter from Minister of State for School Standards Phonics 2019.02.04||[pdf 633KB]|
We are very grateful for the donation of a plastic trumpet to the school by local music shop Wood Wind and Reed http://www.wwr.co.uk/. These are really useful in helping children to get a good quality sound even when they are in the earliest stages of learning. We are using the trumpet in our mx band sessions for Year 4 children and it is a great addition!
The Life of Autumn
The crisp Autumn leaves
Scared by their unholy decent
From the slim oak branches to the eternal abysses of land
The savage polar winds
Meet face to face with
Leaves as red as a flare
The naked oak branches as black as a raven's dank dark cloak
The children rampaging
Among the snake like roots
The pungent leaves
With their charcoal aroma
The leaves stacked are as
Leonardo Da Vinci's paint spillage
But alone they are as bland as stale bread
The veins of leaves
Running with Chlorophyll pigment
The sound as tranquil
As the Dalai Lama
by Oscar Y5
Autumn Poem by Oscar in Y5
This poem was created based on the recent Y5 English topic about poetry. Year5 visited the KS1 playground to observe and explore, writing ideas down as they viewed the world around them.
Science Chaos Workshop 2018.11.29
On Thursday29th November, St Albans welcomed back Chaos (Cambridge Hands-On Science) for another roadshow. The scientific charity, which is run by Cambridge University students, led a carousel of exciting scientific activities in different areas across school hall. The roadshow was aimed at Y4, Y5 and Y6 giving the opportunity to engage and participate in a variety of hands on scientific experiments which included, bridge building, creating slime, lifting items using pulleys and levers, exploring different types of forces, investigating the structure and shape of animal and human bones, watching and discussing small liquid explosions (using oxygen) and a range of other investigations. It was wonderful to see the children exposed to a wide variety of practical scientific learning.
Thank you again to the Chaos team for revisiting our school and giving the children a fantastic opportunity to engage with hands-on science investigations.
Pope Francis has written a letter addressed to every person on this planet, asking us all to protect our common home, The Earth. Here at St. Alban's we teach our children that the EARTH is God's gift to us, full of beauty and wonder. It belongs to everyone.
Following a whole school assembly each class has done some work around this letter. Varied work was prepared by the children, we had planting,poster making, discussions, poetry and prayers.
Year 3 Viking Day 2018.05.24
On Thursday 24th May, Year 3 went back in time to Viking England. They tried out a range of crafts and skills including weaving, ink making and candle making. They also learnt to use swords, shields, bows & arrows and listened to stories of raids and battles. The highlight of the day was a demonstration of metalwork during which the children observed liquid pewter being made into an ornamental pendant.
Science Club May 2018
Year 4 and Year 5 pupils attended their first session of ‘The St Albans after school Science Club’. The children thoroughly enjoyed the hands on session, which was run by science teaching staff from St Mary’s Secondary School. During the session, the children worked in pairs to investigate the properties of a range of different substances to identify if they were acid, neutral or alkaline. At the beginning of the session, all club members were given their very own lab coats and protective goggles to use during the activities! A sincere thank you to the staff at St Mary’s Secondary School for organising and delivering such exciting and engaging scientific activities. The children are looking forward to the next session!
The Mayor visits Italian Club 2018.04.24
It was a very special day for our Italian class as the Mayor of Cambridge made a visit to celebrate all the good work which is going on in the school. Our thanks to Marika Triola our Italian teacher who organised the event and all she does for the Italian children.
Year 2 'Stories from other cultures'
During the 2nd half of the Spring Term, Year 2's have been exploring 'Stories from other cultures'. We have read stories, planned our own story, did art work and watched clips on Indian festivals. To finish off our topic work we have asked Tia's parents if they would kindly prepare some Indian food for us to taste. What a treat we had, we were treated to a chicken biryani, popodums and a salad.
We thoroughly enjoyed this experience and would sincerely like to thank the Toji family for being so kind.
This week, St Albans held their science week. The children had the opportunity to engage with a range of experiments and activities linked to all areas of science. Some of the experiments included, using microscopes to study different materials, designing water funnels and lava lamps, creating bath bombs, building DNA models, creating food diets, creating balloon cars, and designing and testing miniature boat sails. In addition, the KS1 children have been developing their cross-curricular learning through music and sound by using musical instruments to create beats and rhythms. In KS2, the children learnt how to create computing algorithms to develop sound waves and musical rhythms. In addition, classes enjoyed a variety of trips out to learn about different areas of the subject. Outreach visits included trips to, The Botanical Gardens, Fitzwilliam Museum, Sedgwick Museum of Earth Sciences, The Cambridge University Department of Chemistry (It’s a Gas lecture by Dr Worther) and The Scott Polar Museum. Our science week drew to a close with a whole school dress-up day, where the children dressed up in a variety of striking science outfits. Well done to all the children for making an exceptional effort with their science costumes.
Finally, a sincere thank you to all the parents, St Marys Secondary School, AstraZeneca and volunteers who supported the school during this special week!
St Albans would like to say a special thank you to the Public Engagement Team at the Wellcome Genome Institute for providing us with wonderful resources for some of our activities for the Science week. The children really enjoyed the opportunity to use these resources, especially the microscopes. A sincere thank you to you all from everyone at St Alban's.
If you would like to learn about Wellcome Genome Institute and the fascinating work they do please visit the links:
Preparing for Easter
Children were lucky enough to visit St Clement's Church on Bridge Street for taking part in an 'Easter workshop' re-enacting a Palm Sunday procession and following the Stations of the Cross. To help remind them of the importance of the Easter story, they went on a story trail and created their own artwork depicting this.
Cambridge visual impairment team came to school to deliver sight guiding training. The children were able to use special glasses and blindfolds to simulate what it might feel like to have limited vision and were taught how to use a cane. The children enjoyed guiding each other and we hope this has given them some useful skills and perspective to put into practise.
Congratulations to the netball A team for winning the city finals. They went through the recent tournament undefeated. Our thanks to Floria and Hannah our wonderful coaches, and to Mrs Collins who has been helping out this year and for her input at the competition. The children now progress to the regional finals and hopefully with continued success. Last year we narrowly lost in the final, having won the previous three years.
The Shadow Beasts (Year3 exciting stories project) March 2018
The elegant crocodile swam swiftly in the cool tropical waters while the afternoon breeze moved her scaly back. Her thick skin was so rusty in colour it looked like metal, her twisting, jagged claws were as sharp as deadly daggers in the misty air.
Her blazing bloodthirsty eyes shot at her enemies. Out of the waterhole the tree’s dark brown fingers danced in the horizon.
Reception & Year1 Germ Activity
On 23rd February, Reception and Year 1 had a special visit from some scientists from AstraZeneca. The scientists came to school to talk separately to both classes about germs and the importance of washing their hands regularly throughout the day. After a short presentation, the scientists led some entertaining, interactive activities involving glitter. The children thoroughly enjoyed the activities and learnt an extremely important everyday skill.
St Joseph's Catholic Primary visit
It was so good to invite St Joseph’s Catholic Primary into our school on Wednesday 24th January. This was totally unexpected as they were seeking shelter after a visit to the Scott Polar museum. The children met our school chaplains and had a tour round the school. Since then their headteacher is very keen to develop links. The school is the same size as ours but they are located in Waltham Cross, a town outside London.
Chaos science roadshow
On Tuesday 5th December, St Albans were visited by the Chaos (Cambridge Hands-On Science) roadshow. The scientific charity, which is run by volunteers currently studying at Cambridge University, led a roadshow of science experiments and investigations inside the school hall. This winter, their roadshow was aimed at Upper Key Stage Two pupils giving Year 4, Year 5 and Year 6 the opportunity to engage and participate in a variety of hands on scientific experiments. This included, bridge building, lifting items using pulleys and levers, exploring different types of forces, investigating the structure and shape of animal and human bones, watching and discussing small liquid explosions (using oxygen), and a range of other investigations. It was truly fantastic to see all the children engage and enjoy the varied science activities.
Thank you again to the Chaos team for visiting our school and giving the children a wonderful chance to take part in science investigations.