Category: School

Sixthformers pit their wits for Generation Tech

Three sixth formers: Khadijah, Majura and Wissale entered the Generation Tech competition that was hosted by JP Morgan earlier this month.

The girls’ team decided to work on the UN goal for climate change with the task being to create an application that can stop climate change and present the idea within two and a half hours. The team’s concept was noticed as being an original and creative idea but unfortunately they did not make it to the finals.

We are very proud of the girls for participating and coming runners up in their category – we hear that they were really close to winning! They had a great time at the event and received a book about women in science and other merchandise gifts. We look forward to seeing their next endeavour.


Sydenham High’s hockey team end the season on a high

On Thursday 15th March, Sydenham High hockey team played a 9 aside game against St Dunstan’s; the last game of the season. The team played well in the first half, managing to keep St Dunstan’s out of their scoring half but the the score was still, frustratingly, 0-0 at half time. When the game started again, we maintained our energy and a few minutes into the second half saw our first goal. After this, the goals kept coming. A short corner ensured our second goal was scored. The ball was hit out by Ellie and hit into the goal by Charlotte.

Not satisfied with two goals, we continued to play hard and, even when St Dunstan’s made a breakthrough, the defenders managed to work together to clear the ball out. Then we received another short corner when the ball hit one of the opposition’s feet in the scoring area. Again, a great hit by Ellie allowed Charlotte to score her second goal to make the score 3-0. Near to the end of the game, St Dunstan’s tried to make a run up the pitch but an amazing tackle by Sabiha stopped them, and a quick pass to Charlotte who dribbled past the defender resulted in a hat trick for Charlotte and a fourth and final goal for the Sydenham High hockey team.

Emily Walsh won player of the match for her excellent defending and the whole team were pleased with the win. A great way to end the hockey season.

Sydenham fencers advance

March has already been a busy month for Sydenham’s fencers with 2 Regional Events taking place on consecutive weekends.

In the London Region, Lyla Waller (Year 7) made a significant improvement on her last year’s 9th place to take Bronze in the Under 12 Foil. This qualifies her for the National Championship in May.

Also in the London Region, Elisa Morris (Year 8) in her first competition, narrowly missed victory in her third bout in the Under 14 Foil and so faced stiff competition in the 2nd round when she came up against a very capable left-handed fencer. Despite “upping” her game she was unable to break through her opponent’s defence.

In the SouthEast region Ipek Tsil Kara (Year 8) managed a 5-3 victory in her 2nd bout in a field that included last year’s U12 National Champion. In the 2nd round she fenced well but was unable to cope with her opponents relentless counter-attacks.

Well done to all our fencers and we look forward to seeing them progress.

The Elements Exhibition is a hit with pupils and parents!

Junior School were pleased to present ‘The Elements’’ Exhibition of art, music and dance to Reception and Key Stage 1 parents.

The four elements of fire, earth, air and water were incorporated into each subject area.

Art workshops focused on ‘earth’. Reception found a large ‘hole’ in the Art studio, and holes eaten from pieces of paper. Girls discussed how the hole might have got there and what would happen if we went into the hole. Where could it take us? Who made it? The girls created chalk drawings to illustrate their ideas.

Reception, year 1 and year 2 were introduced to work by Andy Goldsworthy, a sculptor who uses natural materials in his work. His most famous pieces involve circular, ‘hole’ or ‘eye’ shaped patterns. Reception created art installations in water using coloured paper leaves and let them freeze overnight. They also used the snow and sticks to make Goldsworthy inspired circular ice sculptures.

Year 1 produced animal collages using natural materials and focused on the idea of camouflage within the natural environment. The girls painted patterns found on animals onto branches.

A colourful Goldsworthy ‘eye’ sculpture was created by year 1 and 2, using branches and coloured wool  to make the bleak winter environment come alive!

Year 2 made leaf impressions into clay to make sculptural pebbles. They carefully painted them in shades of grey and placed them in concentric circles to produce a striking sculpture.

In Music, girls learnt a song about the four elements which incorporated makaton sign language. This was performed on the day around the campfire. In class pupils also made a water xylophone- working out how to add a different amount of water to each bottle to make a different pitch. In P.E girls were encouraged to perform ribbon dances inspired by the different elements and to perform simple dances to Mozart’s Flute Concerto to express their feelings through different actions.

During the experience, a fire was lit and hot chocolate served with spicy ginger biscuits to create the feeling of ‘fire’ and ‘earth’ for the pupils and parents who came to visit.


Sydenham girl masterminds UK wide STEM Challenge

Monday 12th March saw 150 guests and five special guest judges gather for a fantastic evening in the Longton Hall at Sydenham High School, all in the name of the #700STEMChallenge. There has been much in the press lately about the gender gap in STEM and lack of girls participating in these subjects, but not at Sydenham High! This entire event was masterminded, and executed, by year 12 student, Annabelle Simmonds, outside of her already demanding timetable for A Level Maths, Further Maths, Physics and Chemistry. As you can see, she has a passion for STEM subjects!

“The #700STEMChallenge is my proudest project, with the final exceeding all expectations of what I originally had imagined it would be. All of the judges and guest speakers gave such inspirational speeches and for that I am so grateful. It was a night that I will never forget and a competition that I hope will be continued for many years to come.”

38 finalists, hailing from nine different schools across the UK, congregated in eager anticipation to hear the results of their entries into the competition. Year 7-13 pupils from schools across the UK had been invited to enter, calling them to write an article of 700 words on a topic related to one of four categories: Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics, and the finalists were selected within three sub-categories: under 14, under 16 and under 18. The judges all commented on the extraordinary level of knowledge from the entrants; the finalists did incredibly well as there were over 250 applications, all of which were judged on style, creativity and content.

The event was a great success, with presentations from the judges* describing their career paths, encouraging girls, as well as boys, to follow their passion for STEM, and the importance of choosing a pathway that is right for you, whether that be university or an apprenticeship. The audience thoroughly enjoyed hearing from our special guests before the winners were announced and the prizes were awarded, including a tour of the Engineering department at a major London airport and a copy of A Brief History of Time signed by the late Professor Stephen Hawking. All the articles will be published in a journal later in the year.

Headmistress, Mrs Katharine Woodcock, said: “We are bursting with pride for all that Annabelle has achieved in creating and running this event. She is an inspiration not only to her peers, but to us as educators and professionals, and I am delighted to see the enthusiasm for STEM developing in our next generation of young women.”


*The judges were Captain Al Bridger, Chief Pilot Boeing fleet, British Airways, Matthew Gardner, Engineer at British Airways, Rachel Thomas, Writer and editor, specialising in mathematics and science communication, Carrie Bennett, a 22 year old Audit Senior and Chartered Accountant at Ernst & Young, Jade Garner, a 19 year old Business Apprentice, Ernst & Young.

GDST Book Awards inspires girls

On the 5th of March, a group of year 8s went to Croydon High School for the GDST Book Award of 2016/17 Ceremony where the award was presented to the author Lisa Williamson, for her book, The Art of Being Normal. We left school at 2:45pm and after a train, a bus ride and a short stop at Greggs for some snacks, we finally arrived at Croydon High.

Once we entered we sat down in the library and had the opportunity to buy copies of Lisa Williamson’s books, The Art of Being Normal and All About Mia, and get them signed by Lisa herself. Soon after, we had drunk our fill of lemonade and had our new books signed, so we settled down for the award ceremony and Lisa’s talk about her books. We learnt what the background of and basis for her books was, which was really interesting; she also gave us images of her twitter feed relating to her books with the #whatisnormal.

Almost at the end of the book award, Lisa read an extract from her book All About Mia. One of the best parts of the talk however, was definitely getting to ask more questions to Lisa at the end about her books and some top tips if we wanted to write some books of our own. Overall, it was a wonderful opportunity and was great to meet such a successful female author.

by Emilia Beveridge, Emily Glover, Ipek Tsil Kara, Isobel Gardiner-Hill, Quinn Samways Mortby, Elisa Morris, Lilly Russell, year 8.

Sydenham girls’ success at trampolining competition

Our Year 10 girls attended the annual Lewisham Borough Trampolining competition on Thursday 8th March. After a thorough warm up, the girls were a little nervous to show off their routines. Only a few schools attended but the tension was high.  After the first round on the compulsory routine, they were feeling confident. After the somersaults were executed, followed by a round of applause, Lucy and Tianna were awarded first and second place respectively. Well done to all the girls who competed – we are sure that there will be even more prizes brought home to Sydenham in the next tournament!

Year 10-13 receive powerful drugs education message

On Thursday, the Daniel Spargo Mabbs Foundation came to school to share their drugs awareness programme by putting on a play about the story of a local 16 year old boy who died following his consumption of MDMA. His parents set up the DSM Foundation to educate young people about the dangers of drugs as they believe that if it happened to Daniel – a boy who was bright, articulate, funny, chatty, popular and talented – it could happen to anyone.

It was a very moving performance and the girls had a workshop afterwards about making safer choices. This awareness programme has been shared in many schools and students are now more aware of the risks and how to make choices to keep themselves and their friends safe.

More information on the DSM Foundation and its programme can be found here: 


Get in touch

Contact us