Hethersett Old Hall School (HOHS) blog – an independent day school near Norwich, Norfolk.

Girls 3-18 and boys 3-11, boarding for girls from 9


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Pupils at the Palace!

Charlie and Izzy went to St. James’s Palace last week to collect their Gold Duke of Edinburgh awards. After volunteering, learning a new skill and taking part in a physical activity for a year as well as completing the five day expedition and a residential, the award was fully deserved! We would like to thank them for sending us these pictures to share with you. To keep up to date with all our news, please click on the following links to see our Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/HethersettOldHallSchool/or our new blog https://www.hohs.co.uk/news/


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IELTS Success

Last week Kelly in Year 13 received her IELTS result (the International English Language Testing System). This qualification is a university entrance requirement for students with English as an additional language. Kelly achieved a grade of 6.5 which is higher than the 6.0 required by most universities. Kelly aims to study business and marketing at either the University of Leeds or the University of Surrey. We would like to congratulate Kelly on her excellent IELTS result.


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Collaboration and Communication

As part of the Health and Social Care course, Year 12 have to show how they can communicate effectively with younger pupils. This week, Year 12 have worked with some of our Year 7 girls. Hannah helped the girls to understand glacial erosion by building models of landforms out of Lego with them. Amelia supported their learning by showing Year 7 how to use Google Docs and Slides so they could all collaborate on the same slide presentation about glacial depositions. It was a really valuable experience for both Years 7 and 12 and Year 12 showed that they had wonderful communication skills in both individual and group work.


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A Trip to the Azores – October 2019!

We are offering Years 7 – 13 an amazing opportunity to visit the Azores, Europe’s secret paradise, a group of small volcanic islands in the Atlantic off the coast of Portugal. They are so remote, mass tourism is non-existent and nature is unspoiled. It has a fantastic climate, about 23oC in October and fertile land, which means the islands are all self-sufficient and don’t need to import food from mainland Portugal in order to survive. We will have many opportunities to visit wonderful places including waterfalls, hot springs, tea and pineapple plantations, magnificent coastlines and calderas, as well taking a walking tour through caves made from lava tubes and the having the chance to eat a lunch cooked inside a volcano.

Our five-day tour to The Azores will depart on Friday 18th October and return on Tuesday 22nd October 2019. The price is £970. The deadline for reserving a place is Tuesday 5th February. If you would like your daughter to join us, please fill in the reply slip your daughter brought home or pop into Reception to pick up the full information pack.


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Enrichment

As part of the Tuesday enrichment programme, sixth formers enjoyed the opportunity to form an impromptu steel pan band when steel-pan workshop providers ‘Spangle’ visited the school this week.

Steel pan drumming originated in Trinidad and Tobago, where old oil drums were cut down and their bases skilfully shaped by hammering to produce a range of notes. Since the Second World War the distinctive Caribbean sound produced by tin pan ensembles has become famous across the world. The instruments are ‘pans’ rather than drums because they are rigid rather than possessing a stretched membrane – but as our sixth formers discovered, playing technique is similar to drumming and they soon had an impressive set of rhythms going, guided carefully by the experts from Spangle.

After school, it was the staff’s turn and anybody passing the sixth form common room after four o’clock would have heard a not-half-bad version of Bob Marley’s ‘No Woman No Cry’ being tapped out, followed by a surprisingly melodic ‘The Lion Sleeps Tonight’.

It was a most instructive and enjoyable session for both groups, and we hope to welcome Spangle to further school events in the future.


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Boosting University Success

A headline from last week – ‘Mini dissertations help thousands of pupils boost their university chances’.

Newspapers last week said that universities were extolling the virtues of the Extended Project Qualification (EPQ), where students have to write a mini dissertation or carry out detailed research to produce an artefact on a subject of their choosing. Sixth formers jostle to get into top universities and this qualification helps them to stand out from the others. Examiners also found that these essays are invaluable to students to prepare for university study as they allow them to debate complex issues, organise notes as well as helping them understand the intricacies of plagiarism. EPQs, worth half an A level, are increasingly popular with top university such as Bristol, Manchester, Southampton and Leeds all of which actually lower their A level grade requirements if students attain a good EPQ grade.

The papers stated that not all schools offer this qualification and, if they do, often only a handful of students undertake it as it requires a great deal of input from the staff and in large establishments there are not enough staff to manage the workload. Here at HOHS, all of our current Year 12s are taking EPQ and our Year 13s completed this qualification last year. In the past this qualification has helped our students to attain the university places of their choice.

Our Year 13 applied for university last term, way ahead of the January 15th deadline. They all have several offers of places already. Well done to our Year 13 girls and their Sixth Form tutors!


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Welcome Back

Happy New Year! We would like to welcome everyone back to school especially the new pupils who have joined us. There is plenty to look forward to in all areas of the school with another Woodland Adventure Day planned for the Prep School and Science Crest Award presentations, Night of the Notables and the Norfolk Careers Festival, to name but a few, for the Senior School.

Of course, we shouldn’t forget Year 11 who are currently doing their mock GCSE exams and the Sixth Form who are taking real examinations for their diploma subjects. We wish you all the best of luck.

I look forward to keeping you updated on all the things we get up to this term. Don’t forget, if you have any exciting news or achievements in your out of school activities, please email a brief outline and a photo to marketing@hohs.co.uk. Happy 2019 everyone!