EcoClub has started at the Girls’ School!

A group of students have begun work to develop a small corner of the Girls’ school into a garden space. The aim is to provide a flower habitat for bees, alongside a fruit, vegetable and herb garden to support our creative arts department and raise awareness of our responsibility to the environment.

So far, students have sown a range of seeds, which we hope to plant into the ground as spring approaches. The club is free and takes place in the science block during Monday lunchtime as part of our extra-curricular programme.

We are looking for support with this new project. If you wish to find out more information, please contact Miss Liley on

Makeup and Photography Workshop

On Tuesday 4th February, our Year 10-13 girls’ media students hosted Karen Wagner to run a makeup and photography workshop.

Karen Wagner is a London based Makeup Artist who was trained at The Christine Blundell Makeup Academy. Karen has experience working in film, TV and theatre. The students especially liked that Karen worked on the latest Aladdin film and Guardians of the Galaxy.

Students from Year 10 and 11 focused on the iconic styles of 1920s, 1960s and 1980s makeup. They brought in clothes and accessories which also evoked these eras for their photoshoot. Our Year 12 and 13 students worked on horror special effects. As part of the course is looking at different genres, the girls were very keen to understand what goes into the makeup behind the scenes of a horror film. This was a fantastic way that all students worked together as a department to understand the pre-production for a media production.

One of our Year 11 students wrote: “In class, I was granted the opportunity to explore on-screen makeup in a studio setting. First my class and I were introduced to a professional makeup artist, Karen Wagner, who specialises in film and TV. She taught us how to create fashionable looks from past decades, using mood boards, demonstrations, and a verbal tutorial.

Afterwards, we were able to experiment creating these past decades’ styles on each other. I chose to do an 80s punk theme look on my classmate, as I believe that this look would allow me to experiment with colour and contour more than the others. Altogether I found it really enjoyable as I was given an insight to the cosmetic side of the cinematic industry, as well as gaining a better understanding of how different makeup styles represent different characters. For example, a meaner, more intense character would be presented to have darker eye and lip colours, in order to suggest an internal toughness and create a sense of mystery for character. I have gained more skills and a better understanding to how makeup contributes to the overall mise-en-scène (setting the scene) to the film.

After the makeup, we were given the opportunity to take photographs of our classmates in a studio environment. We set up a black backdrop and professional studio lights in order to produce clear and professional photographs of each other. The pictures that were taken were mainly portrait and mid-shots of the subject, in order for the audience to clearly see the makeup designs on the models, however, I believe the mid-shots were more successful as they showed the body language of the models, including their facial expressions, whilst the portraits only contained the latter quality.

In conclusion, I found this workshop very successful as I have developed new photographic skills. I have also learnt how lighting is an essential part of cinematography, as it can drastically change the atmosphere of a photograph or scene. Additionally, now that I have gained personal experience, I feel like I can analyse other photographic work to a higher quality.


Trip to Imperial War Museum

The Year 10 Hasmonean girls visited a new temporary exhibition at the Imperial War Museum, which was curated by Mrs A Abecasis.

Students took part in specially created learning sessions developed for the IWM which focus on the efforts of Rabbi Dr. Solomon Schonfeld and Sir Nicholas Winton to rescue children and bring them to Britain prior to the outbreak of the Second World War.

The workshop included testimony and clips of Kinder who came to England during the years of 1938-1940.  The temporary display also included several personal items belonging to Rabbi Dr. Schonfeld and Sir Nicholas, kindly lent by their families for this partnership work.

The children were under severe threat from the Third Reich and sadly 1.5million children were killed due to the atrocities of the Nazi regime. The heroism of these two men, along with other members of the CBF/CCJR and the British Government, enabled 10,000 children to find a safe place and access to housing and education in Britain.

While visiting IWM, students also had the opportunity to explore the highly respected Holocaust Exhibition which includes powerful survivor testimony. The girls found the exhibition both informative and very moving – indeed the whole day was a very valuable learning experience for them.

Thank you to Mrs Abecasis for organising this event.

Girl’s Chanukah Fair

To conclude the very busy autumn term, HIPE along with Year 12 created a fabulous Chanukah Fair on Friday 20th December.

The girls enjoyed making photo keyrings, biscuit decorating, apple bobbing and hair styling. Food was on offer: doughnuts, popcorn and candy floss. Everyone had a simply marvellous time and it was wonderful to go into Chanukah in such a joyous way. Our Hasmo girls were certainly full of the Chanukah spirit!

Year 7-10 End of Term Concert

On the final day of term, Friday 20th December, our Year 7-10 boys were treated to an exclusive concert with world famous singer and Hasmonean alumnus, Eitan Freilich. He entertained the boys with a medley of Chanukah songs. There was lots of audience participation and the odd impromptu rekidah!

Thank you to Benji Shebson for organising and to Eitan for giving his time.

Rewards Trip for the Chesed House

Each term, the house with the highest attendance and highest number of net positives will be rewarded with an afternoon out of school for some fun. The winning House from term 1 was Chesed and they were rewarded with an afternoon at Hollywood Bowl. Chesed have set the early benchmark.

The Yoni Jesner Award

The Yoni Jesner Foundation also came into the Girls’ School on the 17th December to speak to the Year 7 and 8’s about celebrating their volunteering work. With so much activity happening around the Bat Mitzvahs, the opportunity to log hours and recognise achievements is something we hope to build on throughout the year.

How many hours can Hasmonean girls give back?

On Sunday 22nd December, the Foundation is running a present wrapping event in Golders Green. Information is below and they would love people to join them.

Year 7 Wellbeing Programme

The Year 7 girls had a very busy day on Tuesday 17th December. Mrs Canoville, Mrs Naylor, Miss Gelley and Mrs Rand delivered ‘Heads Up’ sessions as part of our commitment to the girls’ wellbeing. They discussed the highs and lows of friendship, which is always an important issue for teenage girls. Thank you to the amazing team who made this possible.

Jack Petchey Speak Out competition

Tuesday morning saw the semi-finals of the Jack Petchey Speak Out competition at the Girls’ School. The semi-finalists were: Abi, Dalya, Levana, Ariella and Rivki. All the Year 10 students came to the hall to support their friends as they gave their speeches.

The topics presented included: the legality of abortion, phobias and fears, role models, a vivid experience of anti-Semitism, and how we learn from the past.

The standard was very high, and it was very hard to choose between the candidates. Our winner was Levana, who will represent the school in January, and the runner up was Rivki.

Well done to everyone and thank you to Mrs Jacobson for organising the competition. All the girls from the year group have learned a lot about public speaking this term, a skill which will serve them well.

Year 13 Shabbaton

Our Year 13 students returned from their Shabbaton at Skeet House in Kent late on Saturday night. They all had a fantastic time: they ate, sang, danced, bowled and were a real credit to Hasmonean.

A special thank you to Racheli for organising the trip so efficiently, Hodaya and Shira for accompanying us, Shalvi Freidman and whole family for coming, and Mrs Hamer for leaving her family to join us.

These Shabbatonim enrich our girls’ experience of Hasmonean and we are so grateful to everyone who made it happen. This was, of course, their last Shabbaton together and the last time this incredible group of girls will all be together at a school event. The atmosphere was exceptional as the girls discussed a wide range of topics late into the night.