St Chris Junior School has a thriving extracurricular programme of activities to inspire and empower children to play, work and have fun together. There are a wealth of activities on offer in the Junior School both before and after school, as well as longer trips and visits each term.
At St Chris we believe that the skills learnt and fun had within the extracurricular programme are fundamental to a fulfilled school life, and that they lead to happier, more well-rounded and confident children.
St Chris is based on the edge of Letchworth Garden City, ideally located close to London, Cambridge and towns Hitchin and Stevenage yet also to surrounding countryside and Country Parks. We make a lot of use of our location with a number of day trips for students each year.
Pupils in Years 5 and 6 also participate in separate residential experiences to enhance their learning.
After School Clubs take place each day, and there are also a number before school. The programme is varied each term and we take on board requests from pupils and their families.
A recent selection includes:
The clubs are mixed age range participation to build relationships between children from different parts of the Junior School. Clubs run all term apart from the first and last week.
The majority of clubs are included within the School’s Fees, except for a few activities, such as Ju Jitzu and Young Film Makers, where a club requires a specialist tutor. This is clearly communicated on the booking form, which is circulated to parents at the end of the preceding term.
Junior School children participate in a variety of sports fixtures throughout the year. Regular fixtures in the autumn and spring term are football and netball. In the summer term, we have rounders and cricket fixtures. We also take part in swimming galas against various schools throughout the year.
St Chris has a thriving music scene. Our main aim is for children to have fun and enjoy making music, leading to progress and increased confidence, at whatever level, while always striving for excellence. We aim for children to feel confident and engaged and to ensure that they are thoroughly prepared and ready for any kind of performance.
The very popular Junior School Musical Production, a real highlight of the year, is run as an After School Club, and performed in the main School Theatre with the full use of sound and lighting facilities and supported by Senior School pupils and staff. The 2019 production is Little Shop of Horrors and other recent shows have included Calamity Jane; The Wiz; Annie and Beauty and the Beast.
There are also other opportunities for children to perform throughout the year to an audience for example busking at the Christmas Fayre; Tea at the Ritz our Junior Celebration and other singing concerts and themed events.
Weekly activities run by music staff and specialist visiting teachers are: Gospel Choir, directed by Gemma Risden (a member of the much in demand Kingdom Choir); String Ensemble, directed by Katherine Mayes (violinist in the BBC Symphony Orchestra); 02 Young Voices Choir (Autumn term), and Orchestra. These clubs are open to all children.
The children love learning instruments and huge numbers enjoy taking instrumental and singing lessons provided by our large team of outstanding visiting teachers.
Lessons are offered in:
In addition to class-based performances, pupils are able to take part in two large productions each year: The whole school production in co-ordination with the Senior School, and a specific Junior School production.
The children develop their theatre skills through performing in the School Theatre with professional-level lighting and sound. There are also opportunities for children to help out backstage and in the costume department. Recent Junior School productions have included The Wiz, Calamity Jane, Honk! and Beauty and the Beast. Recent Senior School musical productions that the children have taken part in include Grease and Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat.
St Chris is also delighted to offer onsite LAMDA training. LAMDA is the largest Speech and Drama Board in the UK and has a reputation for excellence worldwide.
LAMDA training is for pupils interested in theatre – whether it be performing or behind the scenes – and helps grow their confidence and build their communication skills. The sessions take place each week in the School Theatre.
The St Chris Recycled Fashion Show is now in its 25th year and goes from strength to strength. Each year the show follows a theme, with pupils, designing and making their costumes out of recycled materials.
The costumes are modelled in a catwalk show, often featuring over 70 costumes, by students from schools across Hertfordshire, with the winners decided by a panel of judges and proceeds going to charity. Following the show, over 30 of the best costumes are displayed in an exhibition at the Letchworth Community Museum for a week.
The Recycled Fashion Show is an excellent opportunity for both designing and making, modelling and exhibiting and St Chris Junior School students always throw themselves into the challenge with some incredible results!
The Junior School Council, comprising elected representatives from each class, meets weekly to discuss issues affecting the Junior School and is supported by the Deputy Head Boy and Deputy Head Girl, from the Senior School. The children are very involved in the discussions and decision making, and they even have their own budget. For more information please visit our page on the School Council here.
Wraparound Care is available at the start and the end of the School day within a homely, relaxing and enjoyable environment. For further information please click here.