At Peterhouse Girls we have a Director of Cultural Activities who ensures that all pupils experience growth and enrichment in the cultural life of the school.
Cultural activities on offer include art, bridge, charity work and community service in the form of Interact Club, Leo Club, Library Club, Musha weVana and Kukura neShungu; Chess, Christian Forum, conservation, drama, debate, modern dancing, public speaking, quiz club, sewing & embroidery, Shona club, Toastmasters and of course music which encompasses choirs, choral society, orchestra, windband and strings.
Certain clubs and activities are only available to senior girls and for some activities the girls join the boys at Peterhouse Boys, e.g. drama, mixed choirs, choral society, orchestra, windband and strings. There are various Inter-House events held through the year such as the Buckland Art Competition, Inter-House bridge, Inter-House Chess, Inter-House Debate and the Inter-House Plays and Public Speaking Competitions.
Musical highlights include the Eisteddfod; the Three Choirs Festival with Peterhouse Boys and Arundel; the Combined Schools Concert at the Celebration Centre in Harare and the Marondera Schools Carol Concert. The mixed choir also sings in eucharist services in chapel every Sunday, alternating between Peterhouse Boys and Peterhouse Girls.
The Buckland Arts Competition was started with the intention of giving girls a chance to show off their cultural and artistic skills. Every girl in the school is required to enter at least one of the nine categories: Art and Craft, Computer Graphics, Cookery, Dance, Flower Arranging, Music, Needlework, Recitation and Song. The week of competition ends in a combined performance of all the best acts and is usually a wonderfully versatile show.
The National Allied Arts Organization comprises 4 sections; Art, Music, Performance and Writing. The Eisteddfod is one of the main showcases for the Music Department and in conjunction with Peterhouse Boys, our choirs, orchestra and smaller string and wind groups have won Honours awards and Cups every year.
The Art Club is a relaxed and enjoyable club that covers a wide range of activities including painting, drawing, papier mâché, crafts, calligraphy, and pottery.
Every girl is given the chance to learn bridge and many girls continue to play from junior through to senior competitions. Each year we compete in a variety of Inter-school events such as the Mashonaland Pairs and Teams of Four.
Each of the sporting houses is committed to a specific charity and the girls are encouraged to visit and donate items that would be of use to them. The community service clubs, Leo Club and Interact Club, are open to the senior end of the school only, but everyone is encouraged to participate in Kukura neShungu, which supports the special school in Marondera and Musha weVana which supports the Marondera Orphanage. In addition, the school library needs volunteers to help run it and this is an important service that takes place at school.
The girls are taught how to play this strategic game and take part in various friendly matches with Peterhouse Boys and other schools.
This club educates pupils on the importance of conserving our natural resources and gives girls an opportunity to learn about the animals in our wildlife conservation areas, Gosho Park and Calderwood Park.
Each D Block year is required to do these various activities so that they have a basic understanding of some of the various cultural activities on offer should they wish to continue them after their first year. These include public speaking, etiquette, touch typing, media studies, first aid and bridge.
The debating society promotes social interaction and effective communication from an informal point of view and teaches girls how to debate correctly using the World Style of Debate. Interschool debate sessions take place weekly to prepare for National Competitions such as the ‘Private Schools League’ and the ‘Innscor Debating League’.
Girls are involved in both the Inter-House plays, produced by the girls themselves, and also in the school plays. There are two groups, the Junior Drama who put on a production once or twice a year, and the Senior Drama who also put on a production once a year. The school play, pantomime or musical is usually a co-ed production that encompasses the skills not only of our actors, but of the orchestra, sound and light team and the back stage crew. These plays are usually entered for the Senior Schools Drama Competition organised by Reps Theatre in Harare, with notable success over the years.
The Fashion and Fabrics Club provides an opportunity for girls to learn new skills, make garments such as dresses and trousers using commercial patterns, to knit and make articles for charity.
We have a well-equipped Computer Lab and IT classes are offered to D Block (Form Ones) and C Block (Form Two) where girls can prepare for the International Computer Driving Licence Exams. In the afternoons, girls are allocated supervised sessions to use the internet and e-mail facilities. The D Block, in addition, are given touch typing lessons to ensure their fluidity in using computers.
Musica Mirabilis Est! Music is Wonderful! This is the motto of the Music Department at Peterhouse Girls where music is very much alive. We have three choirs – Junior, B Block and Senior, and often join with the boys’ school to produce a B Block Mixed Choir and a Senior Mixed Choir. There is a flourishing orchestra, a string orchestra, a wind/jazz band and marimba sessions.
The choirs usually participate in the annual Eisteddfod, the Three Choirs Festival and the Combined Schools Concert which features choirs and orchestras from different Harare high schools.
The Shona Club promotes knowledge and appreciation of the Shona Culture and through the various activities undertaken, such as dances and variety shows, the members learn how the Shona live. They are taught how to cook traditional meals and learn the Shona language. The highlight of every year is the annual Shona Traditional Concert, held in the third term, where members are able to showcase to parents and their peers everything they have learnt.
We have two Toastmasters’ Clubs in order to accommodate as many senior girls as possible who wish to improve their skills at Public Speaking. The topics are varied and give rise to a great deal of comment, encouraging the girls to improve their communication and persuasive skills, as well as building self-confidence.
This is the junior arm of Rotary International and is only available to Sixth Form boys and girls. Selection is by the previous years’ members, and is based on applications made by hopeful Fifth Formers. The club has a committee with President, vice-President, Treasurer and other functions.
The club meets once a week either to discuss ways in which they can help the local community, or they pay visits to local beneficiaries to establish what their needs are, and how best the club can help. Funds are raised every year by selling roses and chocolates on Valentine’s Day, as well as the sale of seats at the Interact Variety Show held in the second term.
Beneficiaries have been the Children’s Hospital, the Orphanage, and St Francis School for workers’ children.
This is the junior arm of the Lions’ Club and is only available to Fifth Form boys and girls. Selection is by the previous years’ members, and is based on applications made by hopeful A Blockers and an interview process. The club has a Board of Directors with various posts, including President and Treasurer.
The club meets once a week either to discuss fundraising and implement ways in which it can help the local community, or visits a local beneficiary to see what is needed.
Funds are usually raised by running tuck shops at various functions and by selling tickets to the ‘Leo Dance’ that is eagerly attended by A Block through to VIth Form pupils.
Beneficiaries have included the Children’s Hospital and the Orphanage but the major beneficially is usually St Francis School. Recently help has been given by fencing the Nursery School, making up sports kit for all the children as well as donating books, pencils, and classroom aids.
Kukura neShungu is a small school in a high density suburb of Marondera that caters for both mentally and physically challenged children. These children have been assessed by a local doctor and deemed to be suitable to attend school. Once a week they visit Peterhouse Boys or Peterhouse Girls for an afternoon and are entertained by a group of pupils. They might watch documentaries, kick balls, swim, paint, or play marimbas, and always end their afternoon with tea and cakes. Our pupils that become involved find this interaction very satisfying and worthwhile.