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  • Wir lieben Berlin! - We love Berlin!

    Published 07/03/23

    Wir lieben Berlin! - We love Berlin!

    During half-term Miss Wood and I had the pleasure of accompanying our six A Level German students to Berlin, the capital city of Germany.  Our three days spent there were packed with cultural delights and historical insights.  

    ​We stayed in a central area of Berlin, aptly named 'Mitte' which meant that we could visit most sights by foot.  Saying that we also had to navigate our way around on a number of different forms of transport :  plane, train, automobile, metro, tram, local train and national train.  All great experience!

    Day One

    ​We paid a visit to the German Parliament Building, The Reichstag where we climbed up the spiral stairway of the glass dome, took in the 360 degree views of Berlin and learnt all about the Reichstag and the surrounding important state buildings. Not far from here we visited the Brandenburg Gate, a famous symbol of Germany both from nowadays and reflecting Germany's past.  Then we lost ourselves quietly in thought in the outdoor Jewish memorial.

    Lunch of 'Currywurst' beckoned and this gave us the energy to head to Checkpoint Charlie (former crossing point between East and West Berlin) and then on to the Ampelmann (traffic light men) shop.  Such a fun and vibrant place.  We chose to take in the views from the top of the Fernsehturm (TV tower) just before sunset to see Berlin both by day and night.  This tower is the highest in Germany.  We had a capital cities quiz courtesy of Oscar to help some of us cope with the 42 second lift ascent!  The Fernsehturm was our highlight of the day and we loved spotting the tower throughout the rest of our trip as it popped up between buildings!

    Day Two

    Highlights included:  Exploring the many exhibits in the Judisches Museum (Jewish museum), followed by an amazing Turkish kebab in the Kreuzberg area.  Berlin has more kebab shops than Istanbul!  We walked along the longest remaining part of the Berlin Wall. This is called The Eastside Gallery and is an art exhibition featuring work from 175 different artists.  The evening was spent at Potsdamer Platz which has an ultra-modern collection of buildings on the former No Man's Land and then onto the Hackesche Höfe, a collection of courtyard buildings.

    Day Three

    We started today off at Bernauer Straße, where a former death strip section of the Berlin Wall still remains and you can climb a platform to see what it would have looked like.  Next we headed to West Berlin to the Gedächtniskirche (Memorial Church), where the Stalingrad Madonna painting is to be found.  The luxurious department store:  Kaufhaus Des Westens (KaDeWe) still managed to highlight the contrast between life in West and East Germany.  We were lucky to find yet another exciting view of Berlin.  This time from the top of a hotel (Bikini 25 Hours) that has a restaurant that overlooks the monkey and giraffe enclosures of the Tiergarten (zoo).​  We made our final journey back past the Siegsäule (the victory column) that lit up the sky with its sunlit golden angel on the top.

     We all had such a fantastic time.  Pupils prepared presentations and presented them to the group at each major tourist attraction, we all spoke as much German as possible and are looking forward to returning to Berlin, but next time, in the summer!

    Mrs Kaye-Chubb
    Head of Modern Languages


    " I felt truly honoured and privileged to be back in this great city with our lovely 6th Formers for their first ever experience of Berlin, it was so wonderful for Miss Kaye and I to be a part of and share their excitement and enthusiasm - it was so infectious!  I felt like I had come full circle as my own A Level German teachers also took me to Berlin for the first time (a while back now!) so it really was such a special trip for me with memories I will always cherish. "

    Miss Wood, MFL

    Below some comments from students who attended the trip:

    "I really enjoyed our trip to Berlin because I was able to experience everything we have studied in class. The cultural aspects and exploring the city’s landmarks will allow me to speak about them more personally in exams! Seeing the difference in the East and West really interested me as the history is still relevant, especially at the Berlin Wall (my favourite bit was the East Side Gallery!)"


    "It was amazing being in Berlin because everything we have been learning in the classroom, came to life in the history, the culture and the architecture we saw.  I’m hoping to go back with my parents because I know that they will love it too."


    ­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­"One of the key highlights of our trip to Berlin for me was being up the TV tower during the day and night!  The panoramic view was picturesque at both times. Being able to experience in person the places we read about in our textbooks and form our own opinions on them was so beneficial for our learning."


    "My favourite part about Berlin was getting to see the difference between the east and west. Even though it’s much more modernised now, you can still see the difference between them. Also getting to see to the Berlin wall  as it’s such a huge part of history."


    "Berlin was an experience I would love to have over and over again. As soon as I returned to England, the one place I wanted to be was back in Berlin. Every day was packed with the most wonderful sights and laughter amongst us, which I think is shown perfectly in the photos!  The memories made are ones I won’t forget, from the moment we boarded the plane to when I returned to Gatwick. My favourite part was the TV tower, watching the sunset was surreal. Embracing the culture was great too, especially the food."


    "My favourite part of the trip was the Jewish Memorial Museum – it was so moving and was beautifully designed with lots of amazing art and culture. Of course the whole vibe of Berlin was amazing, especially in the east. I adored it and can imagine working and living there."

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  • History Trip to Krakow, Poland

    Published 22/02/23

    On 9 February 2023 the History Department took 40 GCSE and A level History students to Krakow , Poland.

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  • Thank you to our donors for their generous contribution to our Praise/Reward System

    Published 24/01/23

    All of us at Charles Darwin School want to send a huge thank you to Autoflame Engineering Limited, Limpsfield Combustion Engineering Co Ltd, Howdens - Biggin Hill and Biggin Renovation Group Ltd for their generous donations towards our new Praise/Reward system.  Your kindness is truly appreciated and the money you have donated will go towards the purchase of the new Achievement Badges for this academic year.

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  • Christmas Market Trip

    Published 15/12/22

    It has felt like a long time coming for the MFL department... Christmas Market Trip time!  On 2nd-4th December, Miss Wood, Mrs Kaye-Chubb, Miss Corris and Mr Lamb had the great pleasure of taking 47 pupils from Year 9, 10, 12 & 13 who study French or German, to French, Belgian and German Christmas markets.  What a treat!  En route, we visited firstly Namur in Belgium, followed by two Christmas markets in Aachen and Monschau, Germany, and finally en route back home, Lille in France.  Our youth hostel was in the cosy and picturesque little German town of Monschau with its authentic Christmas market which we enjoyed on our second evening.  All the markets were fantastic, but the highlights of the trip according to pupils were the big Ferris Wheel in Lille, enjoying hot chocolates with lots of cream in boot-shaped mugs in Aachen and feeling like locals in Monschau whilst enjoying the traditional atmosphere and munching on Bratwurst mit Pommes (sausage with fries) and crêpes in Monschau!  It was such a successful trip that we are already looking forward to next year's trip!

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  • Sixth Form Open Evening Thursday 17th November 2022 6pm - 8pm

    Published 02/11/22

    Prospective students and parents are welcome to meet current subject staff and students to discuss the exciting opportunities our Sixth Form has to offer between 6pm and 8pm. Please book onto one of our two presentations, see below for details:

    Application forms will be available in person at the Open Evening on 17th November or on the website from 18th with a deadline of 16th December for returns.




    Emailed Sixth Form application forms to be sent to:

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  • GCSE Results 2022

    Published 25/08/22
    Huge congratulations to Kiera who gained 9 grade 9s in her GCSEs. We are all super proud of your achievements Kiera. Despite there being a 40% drop in the top grades nationally, Kiera gained a 'full house' of all of her GCSEs at the top grade
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  • GCSE Results 2022

    Published 25/08/22

    Results news August 25th 2022

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  • A-LEVEL ALPS news

    Published 22/08/22
    Earlier today we received our ALPS report for A-Level results(This is a National comparison of schools data and results, based on aspirational targets) Headteacher Aston Smith was pleased to announce that our ALPS rating was 2 (out of 9) which was am
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  • A Level Results 2022 - Outstanding achievements for our Year 13s

    Published 22/08/22
    For the majority of this cohort these are the first public exams they have sat since primary school. Our students have worked hard despite the challenges since starting these courses and they should feel incredibly proud of their achievements today.
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  • Year 10 Careers Day

    Published 25/07/22

    On Wednesday 20th July and Thursday 21st July Year 10 students took part in careers activities as well as their English Speaking and Listening.

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  • Charles Darwin Students 'Step into Dance' at Ravens Wood School

    Published 24/05/22

    On Monday 9th May Thrive Dance Company performed at Step Around Town at Ravens Wood School, with Step Into Dance. There were nine schools performing in total, and it was great to see the wide range of pieces performed. They performed to an audience of around 150 people and our dancers were fantastic as always. Well done! 

    Miss C Abbotts,  Head of Dance

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  • Year 12 Students Enjoy a Visit to London's Alexander McQueen Fashion House and the Victoria and Albert Museum

    Published 28/04/22

    Year 12 Art and Textiles students had a great time up in London where they visited the Alexander McQueen Fashion House and the Victoria and Albert Museum.  They listened to a talk about the processes and techniques used by the Alexander McQueen team who create stunning catwalk garments and at the V&A students collected research to support their A Level coursework projects.

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