Science Fair Success

Science Fair Success

Tuesday 21st March saw Year 7 – 9 students take part in the annual Northgate Science Fair.

Students who attend the weekly STEM Science club had started their preparations before Christmas which culminated in a fair to present their findings. Initially they were informed of the theme for the fair – ‘connections’. They researched potential projects and came up with an equipment list for the Science Technicians. They were working to a budget too, so any items required had to fit with this. In the weekly meetings, students researched, did their experiments and collected data. They then had to put it all together in a presentation for other students, staff and family members to see.

There were so many incredible pieces of work on display which showed that a lot of time and effort had gone into them. The projects also covered such a wide range of topics on the theme of connections. Mr Brett, Head of Science, had the tough job of deciding on the winners and runners up.

The winners were Teale N and Harry W (Year 9). Their project looked at reaction times after eating a mint and perhaps surprisingly, they discovered that people’s reaction times improved after they had eaten a mint. Dr Hone even tested it out and it worked! Harry said, ‘Our project was if mint made your reaction time quicker or slower. Most people’s reaction time was quicker but some were slower. So we did the ruler drop test and we found 2 other reaction tests on the internet. I have enjoyed this year’s science fair even more than last year’s one!’

Runner’s up prizes went to Wyn E and Evelyn W (Year 9) whose project looked at the transpiration of plants in different weather conditions. They were able to simulate different conditions in their experiment. Wyn said of his project, ‘Our project was about transpiration in plants, and delving into how it is affected by different conditions such as warm, windy, or humid environments. When doing this project, I most enjoyed replicating the conditions in accurate ways to observe the effects it had and collect data. A challenge I faced was the setup of the potometer as we had to be careful to make sure no air bubbles were trapped.’

Additional runners up were Bella B (Year 9) and Harry B (Year 7). Their project looked at the connection between friends and family and how to have good mental health, even suggesting activities such as juggling to help promote good mental health. Bella commented, ‘I’ve enjoyed this year’s Science Fair very much and I have learned that there’s many other sciences that people may not think are that interesting, but they are and they’re very fun to research about.’ Harry, who took part in his first Northgate Science Fair, said, ‘I enjoyed that we could see other people’s work and also tell people what we had found out.’

A big well done to everyone who took part, for the time and commitment shown as well as the scientific knowledge and understanding. Mrs Simms and Mr Fox were extremely impressed and will now be sorting out Crest Awards for students who have met the award criteria.


Ski Trip 2023

Ski Trip 2023

Back in February half term Mrs Holt and a team of teachers took a whole coachload of Year 9 – 11 students to Passo Tonale in Italy. An amazing experience for all involved. We looked forward to the daily updates from the slopes which included the naming of the Northgate Numpties! The numpties were chosen for their mishaps, whether that be forgetting to remove goggles before putting sun cream on, putting their skis on the wrong bus or losing out to a 5 year old on a chair lift. There were certainly plenty of laughs along the way.


Mrs Holt, trip organiser said, ‘It was a real pleasure to take the group skiing over the February half term holidays. Every pupils behaved impeccably, and exceeded all expectations. Their progress was fantastic, going from nervous beginners at the start of the week to comfortable skiers by day five, who could confidently get about the mountains. A truly amazing week, and one where experiences and memories will last a lifetime.’

Below, Ola and Drew, Year 10, have written a poem about trip and Wyn, Year 9 tells us about his experience.


It’s a very early start

And we’re telling our parents this is where we depart, 

We say bye to our folks

And ready to greet the slopes,

The coach was a blast

But it didn’t last,

The ferry wasn’t fast

And the French Borders we have just passed.


We arrived in Italy,

Now it’s time for me to go ski

But look, that slope is too high for me!

So on the first day the Northgate Numpty was clear,

The Tutu and the Hat,

Of course he wants that,

Caught in the act,

Mr Stirling has stacked!


As the days go on we have much more fun,

Now it’s our time to get on the Husky Run,

After that long snowball fight,

It’s time for the Pizza Night


Skiing is so much fun

But it has only just begun,

We are going up the slopes higher and higher,

Getting onto that Glacier was our number-one,

3000 metres high up,

In the Gondola we are,

So close, not far,

The pictures we took,

It was a great look.


After all the incidents with Suncream, Chair Lifts and Skis,

It was our last days with these,

With not really low weather degrees,

We did the blue and red slopes with ease,

We left the instructors pleased,

Getting certificates for all the laughter and hard work.


We are now all ready to leave,

Everyone is proud from what they have achieved,

We get on the coach,

Another 27 hours of driving

And a whole load of singing,

We arrive back at school,

Everyone had a amazing time,

It will be a memory that will last,

We also like to Thank Mrs Holt

And all the other teachers,

For all their efforts and help throughout this trip!

Wyn, who went on the trip said of his experience, ‘The thing I enjoyed the most about the ski trip was the number of exciting activities that we did each day. As everyday not only would we have a brilliant time skiing on the slopes, but we would also experience extra activities each day. This meant there was never a moment where we weren’t enjoying ourselves: speeding down the ski slopes, sightseeing, bum boarding or just all having fun together making unforgettable memories that would last a lifetime.’

A huge thank you to the whole staff team for making the trip possible.

Northgate News Team – Interview with Mr Digby

Northgate News Team – Interview with Mr Digby

In our latest Northgate News Team interview, Isla and Florence talk to Mr Digby, a Year 7 tutor and member of the Science Department. They came up with the questions to find out more about their tutor.

What made you want to be a Science teacher?

I love Science! I have always wanted to do something to do with Science, so I brought both Science and teaching together.’

What is it like being a form tutor?

I really enjoy having time outside of lessons (even though it’s only about 20 minutes) and I am very excited to be able to do this for the next few years!

What or who inspires you to be both a teacher and a science major?

Wow, that’s a good and tricky question!  There is a famous scientist called Richard Feynman. He was one of the very few scientists who could explain really difficult subjects in the easiest way possible.

What is your favourite part of science to teach? 

Well, I love all science but my favourite part to teach would be Space Physics as I just love space!

How many schools have you worked at?

I have only worked at two! I have enjoyed both my past school experiences and the ones I have and will continue to make here at Northgate!

What was your dream job when you were younger?

When I was growing up, this wasn’t really a job as such, but I really wanted to go to Antarctica. I did get to go and really enjoyed it!

What are some of your hobbies or what do you like to do in your free time?

Running is one of my favourite things to do. I really enjoy cycling but I haven’t done that in a while. I also love family time and think it’s an important thing to do.’’

How many other jobs have you had and can you name a few?

Well, I have had quite a few but the main jobs I worked at are more interesting in my opinion. Once I left university, I became a research scientist. I was also a field engineer working in the oil industry. Then, finally, I was a swim coach! And now I am a science teacher at Northgate!

A big thank you to Mr Digby for taking the time to answer Isla and Florence’s questions. It’s always interesting to find out about the staff at Northgate. We look forward to the next interview.

Year 7 Norwich Castle History Trip

Year 7 Norwich Castle History Trip

In February, the History department took 60 Year 7 students to Norwich castle for the day to partake in a series of workshops centred on evaluating if William I was a hero or a villain. This was building off unit 4 of the history curriculum: Did the Normans change what it meant to be English? Which the students had just finished in class.

For the day students were led through different workshops by Anglo-Saxon and Norman characters. In the morning they examined different weapons with the Norman mistress of arms and re-enacted the Battle of Hastings – fortunately, there were no casualties this time. Afterwards they sat down with Sister Anne, a Norman Nunn, and looked at the doomsday book before having a go at writing with quills. During lunch, the students got to look around the other exhibitions at the castle, with the natural world exhibition being a fan favourite.

After lunch, it was the turn of the Anglo-Saxons. Ælflæd, a Saxon woman, told the students of her harsh treatment under the Normans. The students first discovered how Anglo-Saxon society worked and how people had greater freedoms before they were cruelly placed under the Norman Feudal system. In this workshop some students were fortunate enough to be the King or Barons, however, the majority had the restrictive role of being a medieval peasant. The final workshop of the day was a virtual tour of Norwich keep, which demonstrated how it was really built to intimidate and control the local Anglo-Saxon people.

The day ended with the Anglo-Saxon and Norman characters bickering on the stage and the students deciding if William I was a hero or villain. After lots of booing and cheering the result was heavily disputed and a consensus could not be reached.

Christina went on the trip and said, ‘The history trip was my first trip in Northgate. It was super fun and I learned so many new things like the different weapons and armours or how difficult it was to write with a calligraphy pen (which was one of my favourite parts). I loved the trip and would definitely go again next time. My friend Layla also thought the trip was really educational but fun at the same time.’

Colette commented, ‘The history trip to Norwich castle was amazing. It was super educational and taught us about the castle structure, Anglo Saxon society and much more. My favourite part was looking at the weapons and recreating the Battle of Hastings. The hardest part was writing with a calligraphy pen as it was hard to get it at the right angle. This was a great first trip of Year 7 and I would definitely go again.’

Thank you to Mr Lennard for organising the trip and giving the students such a unique opportunity to develop their history knowledge and understanding outside the classroom.

Northgate Council – March Bulletin

Northgate Council – March Bulletin

We are pleased to introduce our March bulletin. In our bulletin this month there’s information about our recent ski trip and updates from the library.

We hope that you are able to take some time to have a look at all the goings on at Northgate from the last month and enjoy seeing what we’ve been up to. Please share with your friends and family via our Facebook and twitter pages.

Miss Theobald (School Council Coordinator) + Northgate School Council.

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