meSSAge FrOm The heADmiSTreSSThe Autumn Term is always a very full one at NLCS, and this new academic year has already been packed with activities and excitement. The Senior School students seem particularly enthusiastic about the introduction of the new House Activities Programme this term, which will increase the opportunities they have for interacting with girls from
other year groups in a number of extra-curricular activities, and will run alongside the current pastoral year system.
It was very important to us all that the names of the Houses conveyed the sense of tradition and pioneering spirit that epitomise North London, and the whole school community was in agreement that the best way to do this would be by naming them after inspirational Old North Londoners who have distinguished themselves in a variety of fields. The final selection was (Edith) Aitken, (Peggy) Angus, (Clara) Collet, (Stella) Gibbons and (Lilian) Lindsay, all of whom you will be able to read more about in this latest edition of Canons Life.
With such a rich past, it is no surprise that history is so important at North London. The School has marked the centenary of the Great War in numerous ways this year, including on Founders Day which focused on the many contributions that North London girls and Old North Londoners made to the War effort. This term, the
First World War has also been the focus of History and Politics Week, which included assemblies led by staff and students, the inaugural International Affairs Symposium, focusing on the challenges of international diplomacy and the importance of cultural sensitivity, as well as fascinating talks from the historians Nigel Jones, Heather Jones and Hew Strachan.
The annual Arts Celebration Evening also commemorated the centenary of the War, featuring some excellent performances of music and drama from that period. We have also enjoyed the display of creative talents in many other performances this term, with the return of regular Autumn Term highlights such as the Year 7 Dance Display, the Senior Concert, the Middle School Play, The Red Shoes, and the Fantasy Fashion show, in aid of ONL Stephanie Lees charity, KSDP.
North London has hosted many engaging and interesting visitors this term. Five Sixth Formers took part in filming for a BBC Arts documentary with celebrated fashion photographer, Rankin, and girls in Year 10 upwards gained valuable insight into the workings of parliament from the Rt Hon John Bercow MP, Speaker of the House of Commons. A group of Year 12 girls also had the opportunity to attend lectures by eminent academics Dr Martin Ruehl, Professor Nicholas Harrison and Dr Michelle Sheehan at the Princes Teaching Institutes Modern Foreign Languages Residential Weekend in November.
Girls have also enjoyed working collaboratively with students from other schools this past term. The T.S. Eliot
Symposium, with Queen Elizabeths School, gave girls the opportunity to discuss and analyse the poems shortlisted for this years T.S. Eliot Prize. Now in its second year, the Hispanic Theatre Festival, saw students from schools including Harrow and Eton join girls from NLCS to perform extracts of plays in Spanish.
The Hispanic Theatre Festival was just one example of how a strong spirit of internationalism flourishes at North London. From the Schools beautiful parkland setting in London we continue to find new ways to look outward and offer our students connections with the wider world, where they will work and make their lives in the future. Girls have visited numerous exciting destinations this term including Russia, Zambia and Morocco.
We are developing more opportunities for girls to interact with NLCS Jeju and recently students from both schools got together for a video chat to contrast and compare the different publications put together at each school. And students from North London have been working with their peers at Jeju to launch Global, a cross-cultural magazine containing content from both schools, which we have enjoyed reading immensely.
As we approach the end of another busy term, I wish you all a restful and joyous festive season.
Bernice mcCabe, headmistress
interview with mrs Wilson, Deputy head (ONL)Why was the House Activities
It was introduced as a way to
promote links between the
different year groups so all girls
from different ages could interact
socially and in a fun way together.
It will also make the transition
into new classes easier as girls
will continue to socialise with their
House friends whilst making new
friends in their classes.
What do you hope it will add to
I think it will bring a real element
of fun as it is designed to
complement and enhance the
current extra-curricular activities.
We plan to have termly events,
some of which will be competitive,
others in support of creative
ideas and charity work, these will
all encourage a sense of team
spirit amongst the girls and staff,
building and nurturing strong
How were the five names
It took a lot of time to choose the names of the Houses. We considered many things, for example features of the school, such as Lime for Lime Avenue or Budge for Budge Square, we also discussed historical figures associated with Canons such as the Duke of Chandos and Handel amongst many others. After consultation with the girls, staff, ONLs, and lots of different constituent members of the School community, the overwhelming suggestion was that the Houses should be named after inspirational women. And where better to find inspirational women
than amongst our ONLs! The five
ONLs chosen were pioneering
women, who were firsts in their
particular areas which include
science, the arts and literature.
What has been the response to
the Houses by girls so far?
There is a really positive feeling
about the Houses when we
had our first activity a House
quiz - there was a real sense of
excitement and enthusiasm. The
girls have embraced the new
opportunities and are creatively
working together on plans for
iNTrODUCTiON TO The hOUSeSThis year marks the first time a
House Activities Programme has
been put in place to encourage
girls to interact with pupils in other
year groups. All students in the
Senior School were assigned to
one of five Houses, each initially
known simply by its colour blue,
red, yellow, purple and green, and
by the Spring Term staff will also
Every girl was given a piece of
ribbon in their House colour, to
wear on their wrist or in their
hair, to enable them to identify
other girls in their House and get chatting to them. It was exciting to see the School filled with colour for the first few days after the launch of the Houses.
During the first of the House meet ups, the names of the Houses were announced. Each is named after a pioneering or noteworthy ONL Aitken, Angus, Collet, Gibbons, and Lindsay.
The overall theme for the first year of the programme is Who We Are, allowing girls to play a large role in establishing a sense of identity
for their House. Two meet-ups were held over the Autumn Term, and these enabled girls to discuss possible mascots, mottos and key House qualities. By the end of the Spring Term, each House will have made important decisions about its identity, and representatives from each will present the results to the rest of the School community at a celebratory House Branding event.
The first big House event was also held just before the half-term a
quiz, hosted in the Main Hall by Mr Shoults. A team from each House was tested on its general knowledge in front of the whole Senior School. There was a fantastic atmosphere and real sense of excitement, as girls throughout the School cheered on their team. It was a keenly fought battle, and in the end Angus and Collet emerged victorious as joint winners.
At the end of this term, the annual Fantasy Fashion event will involve a House competition category and all girls taking part will be awarded points for their House. Sports Day in 2015 will be centred around the Houses and in the lead up to Founders Day there will be several charity events held within the Houses.
AUTUmN 2014 | NOrTh LONDON COLLegiATe SChOOL
1 | CANONS L iFe