St. Hilda’s offers a wide range of Extra-Curricular Activities.
The School has two netball teams from Form VI and two from Form V, who play matches against independent and state schools in the area. In March, the A Team from Form VI participates in the Harpenden Netball Rally which is held at Roundwood Park School in March, and in the District League throughout the Spring Term. There is also a Netball Skills Club for Form IV.
Athletics and Cross Country
St. Hilda’s is a member of the Harpenden and District Sports Association. In February, the School competes in the Harpenden & District Cross-Country Championships, the ISA Championships in Bedford and in July takes part in the annual District Sports Championships at Sir John Lawes School. In May, Forms IV, V and VI participate in the ISA North London Area Athletics meeting in Bedford, with the possibility of Forms IV, V and VI athletes proceeding to the finals held in Birmingham in June. Athletics Club is held in the Summer Term.
Coaching is offered as an optional extra-curricular activity throughout the year for all year groups.
Country Dancing is introduced in Reception and continues throughout the School in the Autumn and Spring terms (and on wet days in the summer).
A qualified Judo coach runs an after school club for all girls from Form II upwards.
Dance Club is run by an external dance company. It is open for all classes from Reception to Form VI. Girls can take dance exams as part of this.
Fencing is offered as an extra-curricular activity after school for Forms III –VI.
A range of ABRSM music theory classes are held each week. The classes cater for beginners, right up to Grade V. A small fee is charged for attending these groups.
Senior Choir meets weekly after school. Membership is by invitation only, auditions are held in the Summer Term.
Showtime Singers welcomes all keen singers from Form III upwards. Rehearsals take place weekly during morning break.
This is held weekly after school and any girl from Form III upwards (and occasionally younger), learning an instrument either in or outside school, is welcome to join, provided she has reached the necessary standard.
Girls learn to play the descant recorder in their class music lessons in Form II. Thereafter, they are encouraged to join the clubs for each year group from Form III upwards. The girls are introduced to the treble and tenor recorders in Form V. Recorder Club rehearsals generally take place at break or lunch time once a week.
House Music Competition
The House Music Competition is held in the summer term. The Form VI Arts Captains select an instrumentalist, a singer and a pianist, from Form III/IV and Form V/VI, to represent their House in the competition. The Arts Captains also choose a song and create their own set of lyrics and choreography for their House to perform in the competition. An external adjudicator is invited to judge the competition, which always promises to be an exciting event in the music calendar.
These take place during the Spring Term, giving every girl the opportunity to perform a solo and/or duet, whatever her standard. Parents are invited to attend the concert given by their daughter’s class.
These usually take place towards the end of the Autumn and Summer terms and include performances by each class, by the various ensembles and by selected soloists.
Elocution & LAMDA
The girls are taught by a qualified teacher who is a member of the London Academy of Music & Dramatic Art. Classes are conducted on the lines of their syllabus and usually consist of four to six girls, taking place during breaks and lunch hours; there are at least ten lessons per term.
While aiming at clarity of speech, the girls may take a LAMDA examination in Verse Speaking, Spoken English, Reading for Performance or in Form VI, Devising Drama. These tests are designed to encourage clear speech and give pupils confidence from an early age to speak in front of others, recite or read aloud. The examinations take place at the beginning of February and July each year. The marking system is aligned to the music exam boards, with a pass mark of 50%, Merit is given for a mark between 65% and 79%, and the highest mention is Distinction – 80% or over.
Whilst developing good voice projection and improving their speech, the girls look forward to the lessons as they are also enjoyable.
Gardening Club seeks more than just to teach the girls about growing plants. It aims to engage pupils in the natural world, to help them understand its fragility, and most importantly to understand the important role we can all play in looking after our living environment.
Our grounds aim to be wildlife friendly with bug hotels, bird feeding stations, bee friendly flowers and a natural pond. St Hilda’s is very proud of its beautiful flower beds, pots and baskets, which the girls in Gardening Club plant out and maintain.
Gardening Club regularly takes part in local gardening competition run by the Harpenden Town Council and the St Albans District Council. They also promote nationwide wildlife events within the school, such as the Big Garden Birdwatch.
The Junior French Club, for girls from Forms II and III, meets weekly after school and is led by Mrs Knight.
We have a weekly German Club during morning break time for girls in Forms V and VI. Small groups of girls have taster German sessions over a few weeks, led by Mrs Knight. This club is by invitation only.
The Chess Club meets weekly during lunchtime and is open to girls from Forms IV, V and VI. It is led by Mrs Knight.
The Craft Club takes place weekly during lunchtime in the Art Room and is run by Mrs Wright.
This lunchtime Club offers the girls in Forms II and III the chance to try various different fun crafts each week.
These are often themed to various celebrations occurring during the year. There is a small charge for this activity.
STEM club meet weekly after school and tackle a range of challenges to develop our problem solving and engineering abilities, getting more challenging as the year progresses. It is open for girls in Forms III – V and is led by Miss Humphris.