The last day of the year always ends on a high with Northgate’s Curriculum Enhancement Days. A chance to do something a little different, whether in school or outside of school. This year, staff put together and fantastic range of activities and trips to choose between, from dance workshops to Harry Potter World, Alton Towers to paintballing. There was certainly something to suit everyone. 

Here we have a series of blogs about the different activities and trips.

First up we have the Maths and French stamper trail at Gressenhall, organised by Miss Theobald and Mr Everett. A relaxed and lovely day, pupils had the chance to practice their French whilst going round the stamper trail down by the far and river and we certainly had great weather for it. The Maths element involved all of the different areas of Gressenhall including the Workhouse, Farm, Chapel, School, Laundry, Seed Merchants, Post Office and Cottage. Questions were asked about the exhibits which involved various aspects of Maths including averages, properties of numbers, shapes and more. It gave pupils a real chance to not only find out what life was like for the people in the workhouse and the history behind the buildings, but also to practice some of the Maths they had learnt over the course of the year. There was so much to see and do and ultimately not enough time. However, the small group of pupils and staff who attended all had a lovely, relaxing and informative day!

Next, the very popular Harry Potter World trip, organised by Miss Myhill. Noah Eglen and Ella Barnett tell us about the day:

‘We started off our day with a coach journey to Watford! The driver was very nice and told us some interesting things on the way. When we got to the Harry Potter Studios, we had lunch outside on the grass and we were given our wristbands and some passports to collect stamps as we went around.

The first thing we did was watch a film talking about the sets and the studio and how the Harry Potter films were made. Then, the screen came up and we realised we were standing at the doors of the Great Hall! We went inside and it was so magnificent. It was absolutely massive and there were lots of costumes on display, such as the ones worn by Hagrid and Dumbledore.

Throughout the day, we say lots of sets and costumes. We walked through the Forbidden forest, we went on the Hogwart’s Express and we walked down Diagon Alley! One thing that really impressed us was that Buckbeak is a robot – from watching the film it looked so real! It was so fascinating to find out more about how the films were made.

We got to use a green screen. We were given a robe and sat on a broom and we all got a password for a downloadable picture which showed us flying over Hogwarts! Even the teachers wanted to have a go!

Probably the best part of the day was when we saw the model of the castle at the end of the studio tour. It was so beautiful and the lights changed so that you could see what it looked like during the day and at night. It was amazing! Around the outside there were computers given you more information about it. 

We went to the shop at the end of the day – people got scarves, posters, key rings, pens and sweets. You could even buy a chocolate frog! Some of us didn’t buy anything but you could take home your passport with stamps on, apart from Ella, who collected all the stamps and then lost it…

Overall, it was a magical trip and something that we will never forget!’

Now we move onto a dance workshop, run by Miss Hannant. Here’s what she had to say. ‘In the dance workshop, we explored 3 different styles of dance. First of all we did a series of technique and warm-up sessions, and we then watched some examples of street, contemporary and jazz dance. (The overall consensus was that street dance was their favourite style because it was upbeat and energetic!) 

We then learned 3 short routines in these styles – for the street dance routine we danced to Little Mix – ‘Salute’, for contemporary we used Imagine Dragons – ‘Radioactive’, and for the jazz style we used Ronan Hardiman’s ‘Capone’. 

Everyone enjoyed the Little Mix routine the most and we subsequently danced it over and over at various intervals in the workshop!!

The last element of the workshop was independent work – they were to use the styles/skills we had learned in the workshop to create their own performance. One group cleverly mixed all the routines together and added some of their own choreography, and the other group worked with me to create a piece of contemporary choreography to Sia’s ‘Chandelier’.

All students worked incredibly hard and I hope they are proud of what they achieved! 

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