Upcoming Events

St John's College Concert at Christ Church Cathedral Oxford, 1pm - Mon 8 September 2014.

St John's College Gala Concert, Dora Stoutzker Hall, RWCMD, 7.30pm - Wed 10 September 2014.

To book tickets, please click here.

Latest News

* Please also see the Early Years & Infants, Junior School, Senior School and Sixth Form College webpages for more detail on the following news updates.

August 2014

GCSE Results 2014 - Thurs 21 August 2014.

A*/A             63.8%
Pass rate    100%

These excellent results include students with both 10 A* grades and 10 A*/A grades.


Dr David Neville (Head & Principal of St John's College) commented: "Students, staff and parents are absolutely thrilled with these outstanding results,  combined with top Welsh A level results published in The Times last week.  Our students, their parents and teachers are all once more to be warmly congratulated."

The Best A Level Record in Wales Over 15 Years

No. 16 in The Times A Level Results Table for the whole of the UK
Source: The Times Friday 15 August 2014 edition.

Please click here to view the table.

No. 7 in The Daily Telegraph ISC A Level Results Table for the whole of the UK
Source: The Daily Telegraph Saturday 23 August 2014.

A Level Results 2014 - Thurs 14 August 2014.

A*/A            81%
A*/A/B         94.4%
Pass rate    100%

Of our 100% successful applicants, 90% are proceeding to top Russell Group Universities.  Highest achieving Morgan Foley gained 5 A* grades and will read Natural Sciences [Physics] at Trinity College Cambridge.  He is also a diploma standard oboist in our Concert Orchestra.

Dr David Neville: “Warm congratulations again to our wonderful students and their parents, and to our utterly dedicated staff.”

Important information: As far as possible, St John's College will be open for normal teaching on Thursday 4 and Friday 5 September 2014 during the NATO summit, and the extra Concert Orchestra rehearsals that week on Wednesday 3 September from 1pm - 3.30pm and after school on Thursday and Friday until 5.30pm.

The Sunday Times lists St John's College as Wales' No. 1 - Sun 3 August 2014.

Read more

July 2014

Cathedral Choir Trip to Ghent and Bruges - Fri 18 - Sun 20 July 2014.

The boy and girl Cathedral Choristers have just returned from a most enjoyable tour of Belgium.  As well as enjoying the splendid scenery on the canals of Bruges, the choristers performed two magnificent concerts with Llandaff Cathedral Choral Society in Ghent Cathedral and Bruges Cathedral, the latter of which culminated in a standing ovation.




Philadelphia Boys' Choir in concert with Cardiff Metropolitan Cathedral Choir & Llandaff Cathedral Choral Society, Hoddinott Hall - Wales Millennium Centre - Tuesday, 15 July, 7.30pm.

Our boy and girl choristers (and Llandaff Cathedral Choral Society) were delighted to join the renowned Philadelphia Boys' Choir in the final concert of their UK tour at Hoddinott Hall, Wales Millennium Centre.  The concert was very well received and culminated in a joint performance of Parry's I was glad.



Nursery Pirate Day - Fri 11 July 2014.

The nursery children took part in Pirate Day on the last day of term. They dressed up as pirates and all had a fabulous day . We made a pirate ship on the front lawn and travelled to Treasure Island in forest school to find treasure. It was a very hot day and the pirates cooled off with nice ice lollies!

Mrs Banks.





Gilbert & Sullivan HMS Pinafore - Wed 9 and Thurs 10 July, 7.30pm.

The College production of HMS Pinafore has received a superlative review in The Catholic People.  The full article will be available to view here soon.





Ethan & Hiya (R7) win 2014 Delancey UK Schools Chess Giga Final - Sat 5 July 2014.

Many congratulations to Ethan and Hiya of R7 who have achieved 1st place in the Under 7 boys’ and girls’ categories of the Delancey UK Chess Giga Final 2014, held in Manchester this weekend.  This is a most coveted accolade, and the children can be very proud of their outstanding achievements.

Dr Howells.




Senior Sports Day Results - Fri 4 July 2014.

Many congratulations to all students and staff involved in Friday's Sports Day.  It was a thoroughly enjoyable day with some superb performances.

Winning House Captains - St David's: Luca A and Sophie H



Mostyn 15.8

DLS 15.9

Bute 17.1

St David's 17.4 (Winners)

Nursery Visit to Walnut Tree Farm - July 2014.

We had a wonderful morning visiting all the animals. We especially enjoyed feeding the animals and the baby lambs with a bottle of milk. We also went on a real tractor ride. One of the children said, "This is the best day ever!".





Nursery Assembly - July 2014.

The nursery children led this week's Monday morning assembly and the topic was 'friends'. We sang lots of songs, said prayers and showed the pictures we had painted of our friends. Mrs Banks was very proud of the children and Mrs Walton congratulated the children on an excellent assembly.

Mrs Banks.




June 2014

Middle School Newsletter: Summer 2014

Second-hand Uniform Sale Raises £705 - Mon 23 June 2014.

Many thanks to all parents who helped to make the most recent second-hand uniform sale such a success.  The event raised an impressive total of £705, which will now be used for the benefit of the school.

R10 Pirate Day at Port Eynon - Wed 11 June 2014.

On 11th June the sun shone at Port Eynon as the pirates from R10 worked on improving their mapping skills. The aim at the end of the day was to discover Luca’s hidden treasure.  The day began with lots of practice at using compasses, following different directions and bearings.  Why didn’t everyone end up where they should have been?  Soon everyone got the hang of it and it was time to set off in groups to follow the hidden clues in search of the treasure.  At each location the pupils collected stamps on their cards and finally they arrived at the castle ruins where they had to piece together a map to locate the treasure. Each group collected its share of the contraband and, following some questions, pupils were able to swap this for their own gold coin. Before returning home the pupils paired up and built their own desert islands using anything they could find on the beach.  Next they had to bury their gold coin and draw a map for their partner to find it. Did any coins go missing?  No, R10 were brilliant at drawing their maps!

Here are some of the comments the pupils made: It was such fun. I want to go again. I loved the story about Luca the pirate. Can I be a pirate now I can use a compass? I loved collecting the stamps. Yes there was real treasure! The best part was building our own islands and burying the coins. Please can we go back when we are in R11.

Mrs Thompson.

R11 3D Shapes - June 2014.

R11 have been investigating nets of 3D shapes.  Pupils are proudly displaying their dodecahedron.   Mrs Thompson wishes R11 all the very best in their move into the Senior School in September.

Mrs Thompson.


R8 History Trip to Caerleon - June 2014.

Earlier this month, R8 spent the day at Caerleon, beginning with an hour in the museum looking at artefacts.  “We were like archaeologists,” explained Kelsie.  Next, the children participated in two workshops.  Anish reports,“We acted as rich Romans and slaves. The rich Romans ate dormice, snails and peacock brains.”

“I liked the barrack room where eight soldiers lived. There were suits of armour which we all tried on,” added Sam.
Varshnay continued, “In the afternoon, we went to the bath house. The floor was burning hot so the Romans wore sandals. We saw a strigil which was used to scrape the dirt off you.”  Conor: “I liked trying on the gladiator’s helmet.”

The children also visited the amphitheatre to experience Roman drill.  Dylan O remarked “My favourite was when we had a battle. Dylan J and Joseph were the centurions.”  The day provided a wonderful opportunity for the pupils to experience life in Roman times. They all thought it was a fun trip as Aryan explained: “The Roman name for Caerleon was Isca. My favourite part was when we were fighting with swords and bow and arrows. I really want to go again.”

Mrs Firth.

Cathedral Choir News - June 2014.

On 6 June, the Cathedral Choir had the honour of singing for the service at which the Worshipful Livery Company of Wales received its Royal Charter, at St John’s Church in the city centre. A leading member of the National Livery Guild wrote: ”May I congratulate the Metropolitan Cathedral Choir for a superb choral event.”

The choristers are also looking forward to performing with the Philadelphia Boys Choir at Hoddinott Hall, on Tuesday 15 July at 7.30pm. Families from St John's College are warmly invited to attend this concert at Wales Millennium Centre. The boy and girl choristers will also be singing with Llandaff Cathedral Choral Society in two concerts in Belgium: Vivaldi Gloria at Ghent Cathedral on Sat 19 July, and music by Haydn and Monteverdi at Bruges Cathedral on Sun 20 July.

Junior Book Club - June 2014.

Anthony Horowitz’ Stormbreaker was very well received by Junior Book Club members, indeed many pupils have gone on to read some or all of the other eight books in the Alex Rider series. Congratulations to all who took part in the Book Club quiz, every team was able to demonstrate an impressive knowledge of the twists and turns of a complex plot and their enthusiasm for the spy genre was palpable.

The next Book Club text is suitable for all and needs no introduction, it is: Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone by J K Rowling.

Book Club will be held in Circle Time on Wednesday 17th September 2014. All those who have read the text, had it read to them or have listened to the audio book are welcome to attend.

Happy holiday reading,

Mrs Cooney.

R10 Art Trip to Big Pit - June 2014.

In Art lessons, R10 pupils have been studying the work of the Polish born artist, Josef Herman, who spent a number of years living in a small mining community in South Wales.

By Dior Wood and Maddy Bullen:
Josef Herman was born in Warsaw on January 3rd 1911 and died in London in 2000. Herman arrived in Britain in the year 1940 which was the year after World War II started. In 1944 he visited Ystradgynlais but ended up staying for a couple of years. He liked to draw the miners and the people around him. Herman drew from memory and his pictures are simple and child-like.
Our trip to Big Pit was good fun and it was very interesting to learn how children as young as five would go down into the mine in the pitch black to earn money for their families. In the mine it was dark and cold but on the surface it was blue and grey with clouds. 

Mrs Cooper.

Rugby Success for Ellis S (R15)

Ellis S has had a very successful year of rugby having been selected into the Cardiff Schools squad to compete in the Dewar Shield. Cardiff, the largest region in Wales, is the only District to field two teams in the competition and Ellis played throughout the season for the first team. The Cardiff squad, widely considered to be the most talented for many years, played all their home matches on the new 4G pitch at Cardiff Arms Park and cruised unbeaten into the final of the Dewar Shield, which was held at the Millennium Stadium. Ellis is one of a select group due to receive a Cardiff Schools Cap and he has been included in the Blues U16 squad for next year. We wish Ellis the very best of luck.



Gilbert & Sullivan HMS Pinafore

Senior and Sixth Form pupils are in the final weeks of preparation for their annual Drama production.  Following on from the success of last year's G & S operetta,Trial by Jury, audiences will be transported on a journey of mirth and merriment on the high seas this summer in the much-loved HMS Pinafore.  Tickets are available from the College Office for two performances on Wednesday 9 July and Thursday 10 July in St John's College Hall at 7.30pm - please email: admin@stjohnscollegecardiff.co.uk

Junior Newsletter: Summer 2014

Nursery & R5 Visit from PC - June 2014.

The children in Nursery and R5 enjoyed a visit from PC Nigel Pope this week. He came to talk to the children about the work that a policeman does. The children in R5 were very good at answering all of PC Popes questions, as they have been learning all about people who help us in this term’s topic. The children especially enjoyed trying on police helmets too.  We all look forward to PC Pope coming to visit us all again soon.



Nursery Easi Ears - June 2014.

The children in the Nursery have a new listening system, called Easi Ears. The  children have been listening through the ear phones to our week’s special story, Mrs Wishy Washy, read by Mrs Banks.  They have also enjoyed listening to classical music whilst they are playing. We are going to listen to lots of different pieces of music and new stories over the coming weeks. We are all very excited about out new listening system.

Mrs Banks.




May 2014

Junior Multi-Sports Tournament, Sports Fields - 10am - 3pm, Thurs 22 May 2014.







R13 Latin Trip to Caerleon - Thurs 22 May 2014.

R13 enjoyed an informative trip to Caerleon Roman town on Thursday.  The trip began with a visit to the Roman Amphitheatre where the pupils were encouraged to spot particular architectural features and use their imaginations to recreate the amphitheatre's impressive scale.

We then walked a short distance to the Roman Baths, which have been enhanced by state-of-the-art 3D projectors and sound effects to recreate an authentic atmosphere.  Our informative guide directed us through the various stages of the bathing experience and demonstrated the ingenious methods used by the Romans to provide underfloor heating.  The boys and girls enjoyed the interactive elements of the baths, in particular writing on a wax tablet, handling a strigil and especially trying on the gladiators' helmets and armour.  R13 should be commended for their enthusiasm and attentive approach throughout the day.

R8 Trip to Oxwich Bay - May 2014.

R8 had a lovely trip in May to study the Wonderful Weather in Oxwich Bay. They learnt about wind direction and strength by making wind vanes and flying wind socks. Temperature, humidity and wind speed readings were measured across the sand dunes. Dials helped the children identify various cloud formations, but the parachute activity was definitely the most fun part, with the children building up storm clouds and rain. The children also witnessed how air pressure builds, as a water rocket was launched several times.

Although it was windy, for once the weather was wonderful and the children thoroughly enjoyed their free time building sand castles on the beach. Owain didn’t want the day to end.

Mrs Firth.

R11 Trip to Llansteffan - May 2014.

In May, R11 enjoyed a residential trip to Llansteffan for three days.  After arriving at the country house, they went rock-pooling at the local beach. Jasmine said, “We walked down to the beach after each of us received a fishing net and enjoyed stomping in the water with our wellington boots.  I caught a green crab then an orangey yellow one.”  In the evening, we walked to a castle where Chris told the children about how the castle was constructed to protect from possible invasion.  The next day was all about survival in the wild. The pupils built shelters, learnt about bush tucker and different methods to start camp fires, finishing off with team building games in the evening.  Ben said, “The next morning we woke up and hiked to a forest where we learnt about some of the local wildlife.  We were put into three teams and instructed to build a shelter using a piece of tarpaulin and four ropes.  Afterwards we made sweet and savoury bread, prepared mussels, rabbit and fish to cook over the fire.”  On the final day R11 returned to the beach to learn about coastal erosion.

It was an excellent trip and everyone really enjoyed it.  Lotte said, “I enjoyed the trip so much. It was amazing and I wouldn’t change anything about it.  I was really disappointed when we left.  Everything we did was so much fun and made us all smile.”

Mrs Thompson.

Chess Mega Final - Sat 10 May 2014.

St John's College Chess Club continues to flourish, with a host of nationally-ranked players across the age range.  On Saturday 10 May, St John's College welcomed 150 pupils from across South Wales for the annual Mega Final.  Its pupils won trophies for coming first in the boys' and girls' under 7 category and the boys' under 13 category. A remarkable total of 8 St John's College pupils now progress through to the UK Giga Final later this summer.

Dr Howells.




'Spring has Sprung' in Nursery Allotment - May 2014.

The nursery children have been planting tomato plants, strawberry plants. parsnip, pumpkin, peas, and beans on our allotment. We were surprised to see how many weeds had grown over the last few weeks and have been busy digging them all up.  We look forward to enjoying the fruits of our labours in the coming months.

Mrs Banks.





R10 Assembly - Fri 9 May 2014.

On Friday 9th May R10 welcomed parents, grandparents and friends to their class assembly. Our assembly was based on the well-known phrase ‘don’t judge a book by its cover’. Highlights included extracts from the book Wonder, a mini play based on David and Goliath, food tasting and a fun rendition of ‘The tortoise and the Hare’. After prayers, the musicians of R10 treated us to some excellent performances!  It was decided that all of R10 enjoyed rehearsing and performing the assembly. 

Well done R10, we were very proud and impressed by you all.

Mrs Cooke and Miss Sayce.

South Glamorgan Festival for Young Musicians - Sat 3 - Sun 4 May 2014.

Congratulations to our pupils who entered the South Glamorgan Festival of Young Musicians, hosted this year at St John's College: Robert in R14, Luca A in R11 and Pablo L in R8 were all prize winners, and new pupils Menglin L and Jacky T-H came joint first in the senior piano prize.

Mr D. Neville.

R9 Tudor History Trip to Llancaiach Fawr - May 2014.

R9 stepped back in time, spending a day at Llancaiach Fawr. They looked fabulous in their costumes with Elizabeth and Theo dressing as royal visitors. The children toured the house, meeting the music master and making lavender bags to ward off the plague. Ansha sat as the judge in the court session held in the Great Hall. However, R9 soon discovered that life could be hard for Tudor children as Adi explains; “Jacob had to turn the spit for 10 hours and he had to sleep under the kitchen table.”
Sinead describes how meals were taken by the Prichard family in the panelled parlour, “the children were not allowed to sit on the furniture as you had to be over twelve.”

In the afternoon the children took part in a pike drill and quickly learnt that it is not so easy to co-ordinate. “The real pikes are 8 metres long. I held a half-size pike and it was very heavy!” remarked Crina. The award for bravery went to Ella who volunteered to be the barber surgeon’s patient.

Mrs Firth.

R9 Welcome Aircraft Pilot to Circle Time - May 2014.

R9 would like to say a huge thank you to Mr Stephen Lewis (Elizabeth’s dad) for visiting the class during Circle Time to talk to us about the job of an aircraft pilot. The pupils asked lots of questions and got to see some footage of a real plane landing from the cockpit!






Junior Book Club - May 2014.

The Private Peaceful Book Club quiz was won, by the narrowest of margins, by a combined Bute and De La Salle team.  So close was the result that all  participants can rightly consider themselves winners. Contributors were able to demonstrate an impressive, mature grasp of a challenging topic, congratulations to all.

The final Book Club of the academic year will explore the spy genre. The chosen texts are:

Stormbreaker by Anthony Horowitz (recommended for older readers) or Spy Dog by Andrew Cope (suitable for all)

Stormbreaker, winner of the 2003 Children’s Book award, is the first book in the Alex Rider series about a reluctant teenage spy. Reviews for this book include:
“Horowitz will grip you with suspense, daring and cheek - and that’s just the first page!...prepare for action scenes as fast as a movie.” The Times
“The perfect hero...genuine 21st century stuff.” The Daily Telegraph

“Done with enormous style, fun and suspense. Wannabe James Bonds will be completely hooked and eager for more.” The Guardian

Spy Dog is the winner of several awards, including the Richard and Judy Prize and the Red House Award. It is the first in Andrew Cope’s series about the lovable Lara or GM451 as she is known by the government. LARA (Licensed Assault and Rescue Animal) is a highly trained special agent who goes undercover to thwart the evil Mr Big.

The next Junior Book Club will be held in Circle Time on Wednesday 4th June. All those who have read a text, had it read to them or have listened to the audio book are welcome to attend.

Mrs Cooney.

Junior Special Achievement Award - May 2014.

Lotte T, Catrin D and Isel H are our latest pupils who have been given a Special Achievement Award for their positive approach and contributions to school life at St John’s College.






Junior School Disco
 - Thurs 1 May 2014.

Thursday 1st May saw our school hall transformed into a fun packed disco for our Junior School pupils (and teachers).  DJ John brought lights, music, bubbles, games and competitions.  All pupils participated in the musical games with gusto and the teachers tried very hard to keep up.  Holly said, ‘most of my favourite party songs were played and the best thing of all was that the teachers had to dance through all of them’.

Each year group performed a dance competition and the judges found it so hard to choose a winner as all our pupils were enthusiastic performers.  Joshua said, ‘my favourite part was when the R11 boys went to the front to perform the Macarena’. Jack said ‘It was sad that it was my last disco and I hope next year the Juniors have DJ John again’.

I would like to thank the parent helpers who manned the tuck shop for our thirsty dancers.  Ellie said ‘the ladies at the tuck shop were really nice and polite and didn’t hurry me up when I took ages to choose my sweets’.
Mrs Thompson.

April 2014

R12 Geography Trip to Ryer’s Down on the Gower - April 2014.

In April, R12 pupils took part in an investigation to find out if the Ryer’s Down area was a suitable location for a wind farm.  The pupils enjoyed pond dipping, tree beating and observing the wildlife.  The children took on the role of an ‘environmental impact surveyor’.  Pupils loved trudging through the mud and observing the numerous birds and animals.  They had to decide if the location of a road would impact on the habitats of the local species, especially the rare butterflies and nightjars found in the area.  Finally, the boys and girls held a debate, taking on the roles of local people, farmers, energy suppliers and environmentalists.  The discussions were very animated.  Many of the pupils commented that it had been a great day out.

Mrs Cooke.

Roath Fire Department Visit (R10)- Tues 29 April 2014.

R10 were visited by Roath Fire Department on Tuesday 29th April.  The firemen were impressed with the abundance of knowledge which R10 had concerning fire safety. At the end of the presentation, each pupil in R10 was able to direct the powerful hose of water.

Mrs R. Sheehan.




RHS Wheelbarrow Competition - April 2014.

The Nursery children were thrilled to take part in this year's 10th Anniversary Cardiff RHS Flower Show Schools Wheelbarrow Competition.  Our entry was an Alice in Wonderland themed wheelbarrow. The children had a very messy time making the modroc teacup and saucer and even wore their wellies to avoid getting their feet wet!

We were very proud of the end product and were even more proud when our wheelbarrow was featured on ITV Daybreak on 11th April.

I would like to congratulate all the Nursery children for all their hard work and thank R7 for their help with this project.  It was a great team effort.

Mrs Banks.

R15 Tenner Project Winners - April 2014.

Congratulations to the R15 Tenner Project winning team, 'H2 Woah'. The pupils made an impressive profit of over £350 from selling healthy water based drinks, from fresh organic local produce. The most popular drink was the 'Very Berry'. Congratulations to all R15's for their enthusiasm, energy and efforts to make the Tenner Project such a success.  We look forward to running the same enterprise project next year with the current R14's.

Mrs Wood & Mrs Stone.




R15 History Trip to The American Museum, Bath - Fri 4 April 2014.

R15 pupils travelled to Bath for an informative day at The American Museum.  Upon arrival we entered an historically accurate tavern at the time of the American Civil War.  There we discussed how the history of slavery played an important part in the deplorable Jim Crow Laws in place at the beginning of the period we are studying in class. 

After we had watched a fascinating film on the Civil Rights Movement and had a group discussion, we walked through the stunning grounds of the main manor house to the converted stable block.  Here the students used their research and analysis skills on a wide variety of source material, including government papers, witness testimony, newspapers, audio recordings and photographs pertaining to major civil rights events in the 20th century. 

A most enjoyable visit drew to a close with lunch in the picnic area.  All agreed that the trip greatly enhanced the pupils' understanding of the Civil Rights Movement.  Thanks to Mrs Hart and Mr Taylor who accompanied us on the day.  R15 deserve to be complimented on their exemplary behaviour and attentive approach throughout the day.

Mr J. Neville.

Middle School Newsletter: MS Newsletter Lent 2014

UKMT Maths Team Challenge - Thurs 3 April 2014.

Four talented young mathematicians, Daniel S, Richard D-S, Emma D-S and Aliza K (pictured here with their certificates and gifts), represented the school at the United Kingdom Mathematics Trust Challenge held at Whitchurch High School on Thursday 3rd April.  They thoroughly enjoyed the day and did very well in coming 4th out of 23 schools.

Mrs Regan.




Young Enterprise Regional Final (L6th), Cardiff City Hall - Tues 1 April 2014.

This year our Lower Sixth form students have successfully set up and run exciting and innovative companies - Syzygy, Undergraduate Clothing and Masai.

The students have, over the course of the academic year, gained “hands-on” experience of business life - raising and managing their finances; developing and marketing their product ranges and selling to the general public.  

We have been supported this year by business mentors from Admiral Insurance, who have given fantastic advice and encouragement at the companies’ weekly meetings.  We give our special thanks to Lindsey Screen, Robert Wall (SJC alumnus) and Mark Andrews for voluntarily making the commitment of their time during the Young Enterprise programme.

The companies’ hard work and commitment was rewarded by an invitation to the Regional Finals of the Young Enterprise Competition held in Cardiff City Hall.  The companies prepared a business report and presentation outlining their journey and undertook interviews, at their trade stands, by the judges.  Each of the companies were praised for the standard of their efforts. 

Congratulations to Undergraduate Clothing who received the award for the best use of IT and Social Media on the day.

Each of the students involved in the Young Enterprise programme should be commended for the commitment and enthusiasm they have shown.  Well done to our promising entrepreneurs!

Mrs Stone.


March 2014

L6th Trip to The National Particle Physics Master Class, Swansea University - Thurs 27 March 2014.

Sixth Form Oxford / Cambridge Conference, Liberty Stadium, Swansea - Thurs 27 March 2014.

Techniquest Visits Junior School - Wed 26 March 2014.

On Wednesday, 26th March, Techniquest visited the Junior School with their workshop, “Magical Materials”. This took the form of a magic show where white rabbits were made to appear; a wire read our minds and formed the word, “HOT”; “solids” flowed through holes; water disappeared; and rubber ducks changed colour.
The show explored the properties of solids, liquids and gases, and the pupils were encouraged by Mr Techniquest to offer their own explanations for what they observed. All year groups watched in fascination and learnt a lot from the show.
“My favourite trick was the birthday cake trick because the candles went out with baking powder and vinegar.” Rishi
“My favourite part was the three water cups because everyone thought he was going to pour
water on his head, but the water didn’t go on his head.” Daniel
“My favourite part of Techniquest was the mindreading wire. We all thought of the word hot and the man heated a wire with a hairdryer and the wire said hot.” Poppy.

Sport Relief Fundraising - Wed 26 March 2014.

Multi-sports activities will be held in the School Hall during first break and lunchtime, with a 50p donation for each activity.  Raffle tickets will also be on sale from Monday 24 March at 20p each.  Thank you for your support of this worthy charitable cause.

Mrs Brown.

South West Regional Final of Rotary Youth Speaks (R16), Gloucester - Sat 22 March 2014.

Our R16 Public Speaking team was up early on Saturday to travel to Maisemore Village Hall in Gloucestershire for the South West Regional Final of Rotary Youth Speaks.  During our visit we managed to find time to explore the centre of Gloucester, including its magnificent Gothic Cathedral.

Ryan M (Chairman), Dominie P (Speaker) and Bethan T (Proposer of the Vote of Thanks) put in a very fine performance, achieving second place overall behind an older team of sixth formers from Concord College in Birmingham.  Our pupils can be very proud to have represented Wales and to have progressed through so many rounds to reach this prestigious stage in the competition.

Mr J. Neville.

Spring Concert, St John's College Hall - Friday 21 March, 7pm.

Spring Concert Programme

Tonight's performance was a resounding success, with an incredibly high standard of music making.  Many congratulations to all the performers involved in tonight's concert which ended in a standing ovation!






R15 Enterprise - Fri 21 March 2014.

Congratulations to all R15 pupils who have launched their businesses and have started selling goods as part of their Enterprise project.  Our budding entrepreneurs have been working extremely hard to make their businesses a success, with a start-up fund of just £10.00.
Congratulations to all involved.
Mrs Wood.



R10 Millennium Trip - March 2014.

This year’s Millennium trip was once again a great success and the weather was kinder to us than last year. The pupils enjoyed an array of activities beginning with a tour of the Millennium Stadium. The children were quite awe -struck as they sat in the Royal Box and watched James Hook practising his kicking.  Millie said that she used up most of her photos at our first location. Theo could not believe that it cost £20,000 a season to rent one of the boxes. All the pupils were able to celebrate victory at the stadium by lifting a trophy and having their photos taken.

Soon after we arrived at the Bay, having dropped off our bags, we went for a picnic lunch before learning a little about the history of the Bay and how it had changed since the decline of the coal industry.  A tour of the Senedd followed and the children discussed the function of the building in Wales and how it was actually constructed. The children were given tokens to put into different boxes to summarise their view of the tour – the choices were very good, satisfactory or poor. Ella E. said that she had put hers in the ‘very good’ box as it was great.

After an enjoyable meal at the Urdd Centre and a little running around to check where friends were sleeping it was time for the talent show. There were singers, comedians, and magicians. There was lots of clapping, cheering and laughing but it was finally time for bed – or so the staff hoped!! R10 did seem to have lots of energy late at night but finally all was quiet.
Friday was another packed day, starting with a boat trip around the Bay. The captain’s talk was full of strange facts and Maddy particularly enjoyed his story about why pirates wear eye patches. Ben was a little worried when the fog lights had to be turned on but all was well and the captain’s dog was a big hit with all of the children.

Once on land there was time for some pirate games organised by Mrs Firth and then it was time to go bowling. Sohini was very pleased that the girls scored more than the boys. Next it was back to the Millennium Centre for a back stage tour.  The children particularly enjoyed seeing the dressing rooms and some of the costumes. The stage was set up for Wicked and the children were very impressed with the number of props and how they could be moved around.

Finally it was time to return to the Urdd to collect our bags and return to school. Everyone was tired but we all had a great time. These are some of their comments as they got off the coach.  ‘Awesome! Enjoyable! Great! So much fun! Amazing! Unforgettable!’

R9 Mother’s Day Assembly - Fri 21st March 2014.

The pupils wowed their parents with their acting, recitation skills, singing and musical talent and at times there wasn’t a dry eye in the house! Each pupil received an achievement certificate for their efforts so far this academic year from all areas of the curriculum. They worked extremely hard in the run up to the event and really made me proud on the day. Well done, R9.

Mrs Criddle.

Junior Book Club News - March 2014.

Junior Book Club members gave R J Palacio’s Wonder a standing ovation. Quiz winners, team Olivia (St David’s), also deserve a round of applause.

The theme of the next Junior Book Club is The Great War, to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the start of World War 1. Book Club members can choose between two award winning, poignant and moving texts:

Private Peaceful by Michael Morpurgo (aimed at older readers)
War Game by Michael Foreman (suitable for all, R8-R11)

Michael Morpurgo’s deceptively simple style makes Private Peaceful accessible to most but please be aware that it has been described as “an unflinching examination of the horrors of war” and therefore is not for the faint hearted. It is, however, the recipient of many awards, including the Carnegie Award, the Blue Peter and the 2004 Red House Children’s Book Award, the only award judged purely by children.

Michael Foreman’s beautifully illustrated, War Game, winner of the Smarties Grand Prize, has been described by The Times Literary Supplement as “the work of a major children’s author at his peak” and by The Guardian as “An unforgettable experience”.

The next Junior Book Club will be held in Circle Time on Wednesday 30th April. All those who have read a text, had it read to them or have listened to the audio book are welcome to attend.

Mrs Cooney.

L6th Students Attend Oxford University Law Day - Wed 19 March 2014.

Early Years & Infants Newsletter: IS Newsletter Advent 2013 - Lent 2014

Success in East Glamorgan Minor Chess League - March 2014.

The Chess Club has been competing in the East Glamorgan Minor Chess League since September with Aron Calist as the present captain.  Between the schools entered in the league, St John's College came second, ahead of Howell's School in third.  The pupils are determined to build on this valuable experience and aim to finish at the top next year!  Particular congratulations to our participants, Aron Calist (captain), Ethan Chung, Daniel Siromani, Richard Discombe-Short, Callum McGarvey-Jones, Sanay Goyal, Ed Xiao and Nithin Michael.

Dr Howells.


R14 History Trip to the Somme - Wed 12-Fri 14 March 2014.

On 12th-14th March 2014, 27 pupils from R14, accompanied by Mr Taylor, Mr Cooper and Mrs Evans, visited the battlefields of the First World War in Belgium and France.  This year marks the centenary of the outbreak of the conflict and this made the trip all the more poignant.

The pupils visited numerous sites over the 3 days we were away including the town of Ypres, Wellington Quarry near Arras, Newfoundland Park, the Thiepval Memorial and the Welsh dragon memorial at Mametz Wood.  Photographed here are Abi T, Zoe H and Fflur P, preparing to descend into Welington Quarry near Arras.

I would like to thank our excellent guide, Mr Tom Morgan from National Schools Travel, for his inspiring and insightful help during the trip and to all the R14 pupils.  They were a true credit to the school.

Mr Taylor.

New Cathedral Choir Website Launched: www.cardiffcathedralchoir.org

Cathedral Choir Easter Concert, St David's Hall, 1pm - Tues 11 March 2014.


The girl and boy choristers and gentlemen of the Cathedral Choir perform their annual Easter Concert
at St David's Hall, including highlights from Monteverdi Vespers with orchestra.




Junior Newsletter: Junior Newsletter Lent 2014


St John's Triumphs at Rotary Youth Speaks District Final, Wales Millennium Centre, 2pm   - Fri 7 March 2014.

Please click here for more details.

From the Rotary website:

'In a tightly fought contest in the Urdd theatre of the Wales Millennium Centre, St John's College came away triumphant, not only winning the Senior competition, but also being judged runners-up in the Intermediates.

The Senior team of Ryan Martin (chairman), Dominie Patel (speaker), and Bethan Thomas (Vote of Thanks), spoke on the subject "Freedom of Speech
is an absolute inviolable right". Dominie Patel also won the prize for Best Speaker. The runners-up in the seniors were Gwynfor Dafydd, Luke Fletcher, and Nia Oatley of Ysgol Llanhari who spoke on "Should Britain be involved in International Affairs?

The Intermediate competition was won by King Henry VIII School Abergavenny whose subject was "This house believes that we need to put a little more love in our hearts for Arts in our schools". Cara Newsome was chairman, Emily James speaker, and Sumayah Jilani gave the Vote of Thanks. Emily also won the prize for Best Speaker. Runners-up were Joseph Shaw, Daniel Siromani, and Marco Aldridge of St John's College with the subject "Nuclear Power is the future of energy".'

Our teams can be very proud indeed of their successes against a total of 18 teams from schools across Wales in such a prestigious national competition.

Mr J. Neville & Miss Staples. 


Success for Mostyn at the Junior School Eisteddfod
Llwyddiant i Mostyn yn Eisteddfod yr Ysgol Gynradd
- Fri 7 March 2014.

On Friday March 7th, our Junior School pupils gathered together in the school hall for a day of music, literary performances, celebration and friendly competition as we held our annual Eisteddfod. The pupils eagerly await this time of year when they can celebrate and embrace Welsh culture. Pupils competed in a variety of competitions including Welsh and English recitations, instrumental performances and homework competitions like creating a 3D castle and designing a Celtic Knot. It was a close competition this year, but the winning shield was awarded to the house of Mostyn. Winners included Bute and St David's for the R8 Welsh Choir Competition, Ella E in R10 for her captivating recitation of a Welsh poem, and R11K for their enchanting performance of a traditional Welsh nursery rhyme.

The highest award of the ceremony goes to Holly C in R11 as she was crowned Bard of the Eisteddfod. Holly said afterwards ‘I really enjoyed the Eisteddfod, as usual. It was filled with music and a lot of nice competitions. I was so surprised when Miss McManus called out my name as bard. It was awesome!’ Runners up in the Bard Competition were Luca A and Ben A.

All teachers would like to thank the pupils for their hard work and efforts leading up to the Eisteddfod, and as Pannu N said ‘Mrs Thompson was shedding a tear when the R11s sang Gary Barlow’s song ‘Sing’.  We are all very proud of our Junior School pupils.

Llongyfarchiadau pawb! Congratulations everyone!

Miss McManus.

R9 Cog Moors Wastewater Treatment Works - Thurs 6 March 2014.

Thursday 6th March was an extremely wet day but that didn’t deter R9 from visiting the Cog Moors Wastewater Treatment Works as part of their study of the right to clean water for all.

The morning was spent in the education centre where the pupils learnt about the need to conserve water and how to make their homes a more water efficient environment. They worked out that just one dripping tap could waste as much as 300 baths full of water in a year!

In the afternoon the children experienced life in a mock African village. They learnt how to use a well to get water from the ‘local river’ and how heavy it was to carry it all back home! They then had to make decisions on how best to divide the water between drinking, cooking, cleaning, feeding animals and growing vegetables.  ‘The next day’ they were given the gift of water sanitizer tablets provided at the village by an organisation like ‘Water Aid’. The pupils were able to see that by not having to spend time going out to fetch the water that there was a lot more time to spend in the village.  “We had more time to cook and we were able to grow more vegetables which we traded for items like chickens, eggs and soap (which made cleaning easier!).“ 

We got very wet but that didn’t spoil the fun! The pupils were able to learn so much about the life of people less fortunate than themselves and the right to provide clean water for all.

Happy St David's Day from the Nursery!








Success for Mostyn at the Middle School Eisteddfod
Llwyddiant i Mostyn yn Eisteddfod yr Ysgol Ganol
- Wed 5 March 2014.

On Wednesday 5 March, our Middle School pupils gathered together in the school hall for our annual Middle School Eisteddfod. The pupils eagerly await this time of year when they can celebrate and embrace Welsh culture; both pupils and teachers have been working hard for months in preparation of our much loved afternoon of music, literary performances, celebration and friendly competition. Pupils competed in numerous competitions, ranging from stage competitions including Welsh and English recitation and solo instrumental competitions to homework competitions across the subject range. Homework competitions included designing a poster on a Welsh scientist and a French poster about their family, to name only a couple. It was a close competition, but this year, the winning shield moves from the house of St Davids, our winners for the past 2 years to our new winners; Mostyn!
Winners include Emily H in R13C for her captivating recitation of a Welsh poem ‘Pitsa’ and Harry and Holly J (both in R12E) for their equally impressive Art pieces. Harry created a mesmerising 2 foot dragon from papier maché, while Holly decided to bake a dragon-shaped cake for the competition!
The main award of the ceremony goes to Morgan R in R12L as he was crowned Bard of the Eisteddfod. Morgan was accompanied by Mrs Emms and Miss McManus to his chair on the stage, where he was draped in our national Welsh flag and presented with his certificate and prize before the formal ceremony closed with Morgan walking around his audience, as they congratulated and praised him for his exceptional achievement!
Llongyfarchiadau Morgan! Congratulations Morgan!
Miss McManus.


Cathedral Choir broadcast of Sunday Worship live on BBC Radio 4 to an estimated audience of 1.8 million - Sun 2 March 2014.


February 2014

Nursery News - February 2014.


Mr Petals

The Nursery children were pleased to go and visit Mr Petals and their allotment to check on their plants after all the bad weather. Mr Petals was in fine form and the children were thrilled to see all their plants and vegetables starting to grow.

Fabulous Food

Our new topic this term is 'Fabulous Food' and we are learning about healthy eating. We have been trying lots of new food, making creative work, learning about The Hungry Caterpillar, and we really enjoyed Breakfast Week where the children tried a new healthy breakfast item each day. During cooking we have made lots of healthy food items and have especially enjoyed making our own bread.
New Outfits

We have also had some new dressing up outfits. We think we look very smart in our new pilot outfit and have travelled to many different countries!

Mrs Banks.

Welsh Department A Level Trip - Thurs 20 February 2014.

On Thursday 20th February, the pupils studying the Welsh A level course visited the Sherman Theatre along with their teachers to watch Theatr Genedlaethol Cymru's (Welsh language branch of the Welsh National Theatre) production of Blodeuwedd.

The story Blodeuwedd comes from the fourth branch of the Mabinogi. Saunders Lewis created a classic verse play with his unique interpretation of the old story. Completing the work soon after the Second World War, Lewis reminds us that nature is a dangerous weapon in the hands of man.

This interpretation of the play is actually set during the Second World War although Saunders Lewis wrote it for Medieval dress.  The language used was very difficult for learners to understand. It is very poetic and similar in style to Shakespeare's work. But the students showed real interest and asked appropriate questions. It was a really good example of Welsh Theatre with many well-known Welsh actors and personalities attending.

We were very proud of the pupils.

Da iawn ferched.

Mrs Emms.

Junior Swimming Gala - Thurs 20 February 2014.

The Junior pupils enjoyed a fantastic morning of swimming competitions on Thursday. Every pupil competed with
enthusiasm and team spirit which was rewarded with a paricipation medal. Thank you to all parents for their
support at the poolside and also all Junior and PE staff for their help during the event.

1st Mostyn - 258 points
2nd De La Salle - 214 points
3rd Bute - 206 points
4th St David's - 180 points

Well done to all the children involved!

Welsh Secondary School Catering Team of the Year award - Thurs 20 February 2014.
Many congratultions to the Cardiff Council Catering Team at St John's College who have been awarded the Welsh Secondary School Catering Team of the Year award, at the Vale Hotel on Thursday 20 February.  Karen and Gillian (catering staff) attended the awards ceremony and had an enjoyable evening.
We congratulate the Catering Team on their success.


Sixth Form Boys' Football Team beat Howell's 3-1 - Wed 19 February 2014.

Sixth Form Historians Travel to Poland as part of the Lessons from Auschwitz Project - Wed 19 February 2014.

'After we had arrived in Poland, we travelled to the town of Oswiecim, where we walked around the nearby Jewish cemetery (The town of Oswiecim was renamed 'Auschwitz' by the Nazis when they invaded Poland).

We first visited Auschwitz I, the camp which was mainly used to house non-Jewish prisoners, before travelling to Auschwitz Birkenau, the death camp used to exterminate the Jews or 'gypsy' prisoners. The sheer scale of this four hundred acre camp had the largest effect on me during the whole experience.

Our day drew to a close at the Jewish war memorial in Birkenau where we listened to a memorial service led by a rabbi. It was highly emotional, especially as it was extremely dark by this point in the day. After the service we lit candles and placed them on the train tracks in commemoration of the hundreds of thousands of Jews who suffered and died on these tracks.'

Matthew Barbato (L6th).

R14 RE Buddhist Festival - Tues 18 February 2014.

On our final General RE lesson for this term, R14 culminated all their research and hard work on Buddhism by celebrating a variety of festivals celebrated by the followers of Buddha.

Pupils worked in groups to research such festivals as Esala Perahera, Songkran and Wesak.  They found out about each festival's symbolism and reason for celebration, developing a presentation to deliver back to the group. Everyone should be commended on their enthusiasm and efforts today.  The standard of work and manner in which pupils undertook this task was outstanding.

After each group presented their festival, they had a small party game to entertain the crowds relating to their particular celebration.  These included a shadow puppet show, meditation station, rain dance, ice cube melting race and a blindfolded 'place the tooth in the mouth' to symbolise the festival of Buddha's tooth!

All pupils were rewarded with Thai crackers, chilli dip and chocolate cake washed down with a variety of  tropical juices to complete the festival vibe!  Well done, R14.

Mrs Crowley-Davies & Mr Milton.

Double Win at Rotary Youth Speaks Cardiff Area Final - Mon 17 February 2014.

St John's College public speaking teams are celebrating a double victory tonight following the Cardiff Area Final hosted by Cardiff Golf Club. 

Many congratulations to Daniel S, Marco A and Joe S (R13) of the Intermediate Team and to Dominie P, Ryan M and Bethan T (R16) of the Senior Team who saw off strong competition from schools across Cardiff, including finalists, Cardiff High School and Whitchurch High School, to take first place in both competitions.  Dominie and Bethan were honoured with the further accolades of 'Best Speaker' and 'Best Proposer of the Vote of Thanks'.

Our Intermediate and Senior Public Speaking Teams will now represent Cardiff at the prestigious Rotary Youth Speaks District Final on 7 March at the Wales Millenium Centre against teams from across South and West Wales - a very impressive achievement.

Miss Staples and Mr J. Neville.

Sixth Form Team Compete in Cambridge Union Debating South-West Regional Final - Fri 14 February 2014.

On Friday evening, sixth form debaters - Amreet and Will - travelled to Marling School in Stroud for the South-West Regional Final of the Cambridge Union Schools Debating Competition.  As expected, the standard of debating was very high indeed.  Our students held their own against two teams from Marling School, including a very strong team of U6th students who were the eventual winners of the competition.  Will and Amreet can be very proud of their performances in such challenging debates on the legitimacy of force-feeding in prisons and limiting membership of animal welfare charities to vegetarians only.  I have no doubt that the young gentlemen will find this experience invaluable for next year's competitions.

Mr J. Neville.

R12 History Trip to Cardiff Castle - Thurs 13 February 2014.

R12 Historians enjoyed a fascinating trip to Cardiff Castle on Thursday, which brought to life many of the aspects of Norman life that we have studied in class.  Our visit began with an informative guided tour of the Georgian and Victorian parts of the castle, including architect William Burges's masterpiece, the 'Arab Room', with its Moorish gilded ceiling.  The boys and girls were particularly enamoured with the imposing Banqueting Hall and the secluded Roof Garden.

Our next destination of our trip was the Steward's Room, which was lined with an array of helmets, body armour and weapons from the Romans through to the Civil War.  Here the children learnt about developments in weaponry and armour across the centuries, with an interactive display of the mechanics of a model trebuchet which fired across the room.  Especially enjoyable was the chance for the children to try on the chain mail and various helmets at the end of the demonstration.  The boys and girls should be commended on their impeccable behaviour throughout the trip, and we are particularly grateful to Cardiff Castle for a thoroughly enjoyable visit.

Mr J. Neville.

Intermediate Mathematical Challenge Results - February 2014.

Silver Certificate - Queena L
Bronze Certificate - Matthew C, Andrea L, David T, Michael L, Selina A 

Silver Certificate – David G (Qualifier for next round on 20th March), Milo S
Bronze Certificate – Dan J, Aliza K, Natsuki H, Robert F

Silver Certificate – Richard D-S

Regrettably, the Challenge coincided with the Sports Tour this year which meant that a number of very good mathematicians were unable to enter the competition this time.

Mrs Regan.

Sports Tour to Malaga - Wed 5 - Sun 9 February 2014.

Click here for a full account of the Senior Sports Tour to Malaga.

Miss Goulden.




Chess Success - February 2014.

Cardiff and the Vale Junior Chess Championships Results (Sun 9 February 2014):

Of the 250 children who took part in the Cardiff & Vale Schools Chess Championships at Cardiff City Council Offices in Atlantic Wharf, Daniel S was Champion of the Under 15 category and Ethan C was Champion of the Under 8 category.  Ethan C has also been selected for the top sections of the Welsh Junior Championships in March 2014.  St John's College is only one of two schools to have two county champions!  Well done to all the St John's pupils involved.





Points out of 6    Position
U15   Daniel S                 6/6                      1st
U13   Aron C                    5/6                      2nd
          Ed X                       4/6                      4th
          Nithin M                  2/6
U11  Irene W                   (1/3)
U9    Ollie S                      4/6                     4th
        Oscar H                    2/6
U8    Ethan C                    6/6                     1st

Many congratulations to all involved.

Minor Chess League Victory (Mon 27 January 2014):

Congratulations also to Aron, Ethan, Edward and Callum who each won their matches against Llandaff Cathedral School, culminating in a 4-0 victory for St John's College.

Dr Howells.


January 2014

F1 in Schools Success for St John's College Teams - Wed 29 January 2014.

On Wednesday 29th January St John's College entered two teams for the regional finals of the F1 in Schools competition at Swansea Waterfront Museum. The members of team Stratos and team Velocity worked very hard over several months to prepare an exhibition, twenty page portfolio, a five minute presentation and the all important model F1 car for racing.  The car was designed using CAD software (Autodesk) before being made at the Bridgend Waterton centre supported by EESW.

Team Stratos designed the second fastest car of the day and were highly commended for their display, folio and presentation.
Thank you to Morgan Cole and Belief who kindly sponsored this year's teams.

Team Stratos members:  Mattew Westlake, Shaun Malloy, Natalie Lloyd Gale, Natasha Sturrock, Feyi Ajayi and Hannah Son.
Team Velocity members: Dafydd Skelton, Dafydd Evans, Tom McCann, Sam Xerri and Richard D-S.

If you would like to be involved in F1 in Schools, we meet every Tuesday lunchtime in room 3.5.

Mr Moody.

R16 Team Wins Rotary Youth Speaks Competition - Thurs 23 January 2014.

Many congratulations to our teams from R16 who competed in Thursday night's Rotary Youth Speaks Competition at Howell's School, Llandaff. 

Team 1 consisted of Ryan M (Chair), Dominie P (Speaker) and Bethan T (Vote of Thanks), while Team 2 comprised Gwyn P (Chair), Tom M (Speaker) and Aditya N (Vote of Thanks).  By coincidence our speakers both chose the topic of free speech.

Dominie: 'Freedom of speech is an absolute, inviolable right'.

Tom: 'It is sometimes justified for the government to restrict freedom of speech'.

The standard of public speaking was very high indeed.  Our speakers balanced gravity of speech content with wit and highly persuasive argument.  Despite competing against older teams of sixth formers from Llandaff Cathedral School and Howell's School, Llandaff, our R16 team was awarded first prize.  Ryan, Dominie and Bethan (Team 1) now progress to the regional final on 17 February. 

Added to the sixth formers' victory in the Cambridge Union Debating Competition last month, this has been an exceptional period of success for public speaking and debating at St John's College.  Congratulations to everyone involved.

Mr J. Neville.

R13 Team Wins Rotary Youth Speaks Competition - Tues 21 January 2014.

We are delighted that a group from R13, who were entered for the Rotary Club ‘Youth Speaks’ Intermediate Competition held at Howell’s school Tuesday, 21st January 2014, won 1st place! They skilfully beat off stiff competition from The Cathedral School and Howell’s to win this prestigious award. They delivered their Team Topic: Nuclear is the future of energy with confidence, skill and demonstrated an ability to think on their feet and were highly praised by the judges for their polished performances.

Team 1: We would like to congratulate Joe S (chairperson), Daniel S (Speaker) and Marco A (Vote of Thanks) for their outstanding efforts. They were amply rewarded with a commemorative plaque and a £15 voucher each. Well done to you all!

We would also like to congratulate the runners up from Team2: Richard D-S, Idris K, Rowan D.  All delivered their speeches with confidence and wit. Well done, boys!

The winning team will now compete in the regional final 17th February 2014 which will be held at Cardiff Golf Club.

Miss Staples.

Cathy Farr R10 & R11 Creative Writing Workshop - Tues 14 January 2014.

On 14th January R10 and R11 pupils enjoyed a visit from a local author, Cathy Farr.  She led a creative writing workshop for each year group where they were encouraged to create their own imaginary pet.  Cathy Farr talked about her own books and what inspired her to write fiction.  Pupils were also given the opportunity to purchase signed copies of her books.
This is what some of the R11 pupils wrote about her visit:

Joshua wrote, ‘When Cathy Farr came to visit, I found it very exciting.  Cathy Farr is the author of the books Moon Chase and Moon Crossing.  I have not yet read Moon Crossing but I found Moon Chase amazing.  I really enjoyed her visit as we got to hear about what she did when she was young and what it takes to be an author.’

Ben wrote, ‘I particularly enjoyed Cathy Farr’s visit to St John’s as she was open minded and gave us top tips on how to write.  It was interesting when she explained how she had created the great hounds in her fantasy land.’

Mrs Thompson.


R11 Clarice Cliff Designs - January 2014.

R11 started the new term learning about colour.  We started out making a colour wheel and blending our own primary, secondary and tertiary shades before talking about colour association and how some colours are hot and some cold.  After we had exhausted our experimentation we began researching a lady called Clarice Cliff.

Clarice Cliff was an Art Deco artist who specialized in ceramics.  Her bold, colourful pottery captured the imagination of the pupils who soon began creating their very own designs for a tea set that can be viewed in the PE corridor on display. To complete our term and entwine all our knowledge we embarked on a clay plate project, using Clarice Cliff and seasons as our inspiration.

The R11 pupils rolled out their own clay and scored a pattern before they were fired in the kiln.  After this, coloured glaze was added followed by an overglaze to add shine and protection. Days seemed like weeks as pupils waited for the plates to cool before removing from the kiln.  However, once the plates were removed, the pupils were delighted with themselves as they viewed their individual, colourful works of art.

This has been fantastic term's work R11 and you have produced absolutely beautiful work.  You should all be very proud.

Mrs Cooper & Mrs Crowley-Davies.

Primary Maths Challenge - January 2014.

Some of our pupils in R10 and R11 took part in this year’s Primary Maths Challenge, run by the Mathematical Association (MA).  This year over 77,000 pupils in 2100 schools took part in the challenge.  The questions posed involve problem solving and are quite challenging.  Feedback on the MA website suggests that this was the toughest paper for about 5 years, so well done to all our pupils who sat the challenge.  Congratulations to the following pupils:

Gold Award         - Dylan O (R11)
Silver Award       - Sachin P (R11), Jasmine S (R11)
Bronze Award    - Benjamin A (R11), Luca A (R11)

Mrs Thompson.

Royal Institution Masterclasses - January 2014.

Two groups of talented young mathematicians from R14 and R15 have started an eight-week series of Saturday morning Mathematics masterclasses at the University of South Wales, Pontypridd.  The pupils involved in the Key Stage 4 classes are Nila Jambulingam, Queena Lee, Tanya Chiganze, Michael Lingham, Matthew Chung and Joshua Chang.  The Key Stage 3 pupils are Richard Discombe-Short, Emma Discombe-Short, Aliza Khan and Dan Josty.

The first class involved mathematical puzzles, which they all thoroughly enjoyed.  However, Joshua, Matthew and Michael were particularly pleased with their very high score.

The masterclasses continue until the middle of March.

Mrs Regan.


Junior Book Club - January 2014.

It would appear that Dodie Smith's classic tale of loveable Dalmatians, 'The Hundred and One Dalmatians', has charmed another generation of young readers. Congratulations to The Sheepdog team (aka St. David's) for winning a closely fought Book Club quiz this half-term.

The next Book Club text is 'Wonder', a debut novel by R J Palacio, published in 2012. Malorie Blackman, the current Children's Laureate, said of 'Wonder':
"What a gem of a story. Moving and heart warming. This book made me laugh, made me angry, made me cry".

The Financial Times said:
"When the kids have finished with this the adults will want to read it. Everybody should".

The next Book Club will be held on Wednesday 12th March, in Circle Time. All those who have read the text, had it read to them or have listened to the audio book are welcome to attend.

Mrs Cooney.

Oxford Union Schools Debating Competition - Wed 15 January 2014.

Last night, Victor, Abhinaba, Matthew, Amreet, Anikit and Sian of Lower 6th competed in the prestigious Oxford Union Schools Debating Competition, this year hosted by Howell's School, Llandaff.  After each motion was announced, the teams were assigned different roles within the debate and given 15 minutes to prepare for each motion.  The motions were certainly challenging, and the judges commented that the standard of debating was particularly high this year.  Our students acquitted themselves very well against teams comprising mostly Upper 6th students, and were consistently praised for their clear speech structures and astute points of information.  Congratulations to all involved.

Mr J. Neville.

R11/R12 Science Club Notice

Please Note - Science club will resume on Monday 3rd March, the first day back after half term.
Miss Sayce.


News archive

St John's College
Old St Mellons
Cardiff CF3 5YX
T : (+44) 029 20778 936