Orchestra Day at Uppingham

On Thursday 22nd February, 20 of our pupils went to Uppingham School for a superb orchestra day. Performing alongside 340 pupils from 21 schools is an amazing experience and our pupils enjoyed performing ‘The Magic of Music’, based on Harry Potter themes as a massed orchestra. The string orchestra performed ‘Four Variations on a theme by Beethoven’ and ‘Hypsilophodon Hoe-Down’. The wind band performed ‘Highlights from Jersey Boys’ and ‘Can’t Stop the Feeling’. The concert opened with Uppingham’s fantastic Jazz Orchestra and it was lovely to see two old Stoneygate pupils in the trumpet section.

I am very grateful to Mrs Angell for coming with us and being such a enthusiastic helper in the percussion section! It was also lovely to have so many parents in the final concert. I hope all the pupils can see the difference that hard work and practice makes. I can’t wait to take everyone again in 2019!

Mrs Ashwin

Leicester Cathedral Choir Auditions

On Thursday, Dr Ouvry-Johns (whom some of you will know as our Carol Service organist) came to talk in assembly about the choirs at Leicester Cathedral. There are auditions coming up for the choirs on Saturday 3 March from 10 – 4 and the information is below. I sing with Dr Ouvry-Johns regularly and love it. A cathedral choir musical education is a fantastic thing that develops skills that stay with you for life – I can’t recommend it highly enough!



Mrs Ashwin


his-master-voiceHeadmaster’s Voice

I don’t want school to be dull… but sometimes we have to do grammar exercises, sometimes we’ve just got to learn Latin verbs and sometimes we have to practise scales on the piano- and these disciplines are important.  Routine and practise are two key characteristics in education and life…but enjoying something slightly different or totally unexpected can also bring rewards. This week we have experienced performing Chinese lions, huge orchestras, sports fixtures, made science projects and listened to the choir master of Leicester Cathedral choir …

Over half term millions of people celebrated the Chinese New Year; as a school we thought it only fitting to bring this celebration to school.  Without letting the pupils know, we invited ‘Long feng Martial and Cultural Arts’ into school and in doing so they brought colour, noise, gymnastics and tears for some of our younger pupils!


I’d like thank Dr Christopher Ouvry-Johns, Director of Music at Leicester Cathedral for coming to assembly and discussing the role of a chorister.  Mrs Ashwin and I are both keen to develop this relationship with the cathedral.

Thank you to Year 6 who introduced school to World Book day.  This event takes place next Thursday and to celebrate we are giving the pupils an opportunity to come to school dressed as a character from a book (for older, more self-conscious pupils, non-uniform can be worn, however do let us know your favourite character!).  We are asking for a donation of £1 to take part.  This money will then go to a local charitable cause… a 5 year old boy who lives in the county with Muscular Dystrophy.

On Thursday a number of Stoneygate pupils took part in the Prep school Music day at Uppingham.  21 prep schools from all over the country joined in this musical extravaganza.   The evening concert, which I was lucky enough to attend, was truly wonderful.  The experience, thrill and noise made by these 21 schools is unforgettable.  Thanks must also go to Mrs Ashwin and Mrs Angell for accompanying and encouraging the pupils.

We want our pupils to be creative; we also want our pupils to be resilient, determined and brave.  Those characteristics have certainly been on display in our sports fixtures this week.  I was delighted to watch some of our girls in action against Twycross.  My knowledge of netball is still somewhat limited, but I recognise teamwork, spatial awareness and the ability to pass (& shoot!) with a ball. Girls, you were amazing!  We’ve had fixtures against Maidwell Hall, Twycross House and Stamford in football, netball and hockey this week. Please see the website for results and fixtures.


Finally, thank you to pupils (and parents) in Year 5 for building some outstanding models linked to Science work.  The models are on display in both the Science room and the dining room.

Enjoy the weekend,

Mr Dobson

Winter Music Exam Results


Music exams are a part of many musicians’ journey. We are very proud of the success of our players and singers and would like to offer congratulations to:

  • Olivia – Grade 1 Music Theory with merit
  • Imara – Grade 1 Music Theory with distinction
  • Felix – Grade 1 Guitar with distinction
  • Karan – Grade 2 Piano
  • Shonali – Grade 2 Music Theory with merit
  • Rosie – Grade 2 Singing with merit
  • Hattie – Grade 7 Singing

Mrs Ashwin

Keyboard, Drums, Guitar and Ukulele Concert

On 1 February, we were treated to a lovely display of keyboard, drum, guitar and ukulele playing. There was a variety of styles and pieces and a range of ensembles to enjoy. It was very clear how much work had gone into the preparation as the performances were fluent and stylish. I was too busy enjoying the music to take photos of everyone, but here are a few photos of the concert.

Mrs Ashwin


his-master-voiceHeadmaster’s Voice

Apparently today is ‘National Toothache Day’ and, much to my children’s delight and my incredulity, ‘National Pizza Day’. Really?

We have, as a school, marked two events this week: Internet Safety day and Vote100.

Thank you Mrs Jelly and 4FJ for delivering a really important assembly on Tuesday based on internet safety.  Thanks also to some of our older pupils for helping out with some drama in that assembly.


Drama based on internet safety…

On Thursday, Reception gave school a ‘Q&A’ session on winter- their answers on weather, animals, clothing and hobbies were brilliant!  (Again thanks to our Reception staff, Mrs Balchin and Mrs Stretton.)

IMG_3277 (4)

Happy to play in the snow…

The second national event we remembered this week was the centenary of women in Britain getting the vote.  As a school we have a rich history and I’m very proud that we have links with the Suffragettes.  As I mentioned in my letter, Nellie Taylor, was both a Suffragette and Stoneygate school mother 100 years ago.

nellieNellie, Stoneygate mother & Suffragette

When Emmeline Pankhurst declared, “Deeds, not words”, Nellie responded.   In 1912 Nellie took part in a window smashing campaign in London.  She was subsequently arrested and went on hunger strike.

Our Stoneygate mother has the dubious honour of being one of the first people in the UK to be put under police surveillance… the police watched and photographed Nellie’s movements.  Photographs of Nellie can be seen in the National Portrait Gallery.

Please do complete your ‘Top 5 most inspirational British women’ and return them to me…it will be interesting to see the results.

Queen Victoria, Mary Berry, Boudicca & Adele…would they be on your list?

As a school and as families, we encourage discussion and debate.  This week Madame Hosie and I encouraged pupils from Y6-9 to join us in a debate on the Royal Family.  With Royal weddings imminent this year, we thought it only fitting to discuss ‘Do we need a Royal Family in the 21st century?’  Over half term we’d like pupils to take a side and equip themselves for a lively discussion… there can be no sitting on the fence!

Congratulations to pupils in Y5 & 6 for completing their Maths challenges this week (see Mr Palmer’s blog).

Head teacher’s Awards

Year 2- Ellie- outstanding work

Year 1-Ellie- super glossary definitions

Reception- the entire Form for learning their lines and their wonderful delivery!

Date for the diary:

Parents de-fib training 2nd March, 9.00am school hall.  Refreshments to follow.

Enjoy the half term…I’d better put some pizzas in the oven!

Mr Dobson