School News and Head's Blog

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Posted on: 11/06/2021

Weekly News - Friday 11th June 2021

Singing Competition What a fantastic Singing Competition we enjoyed this afternoon! The children in Years 2 - 6 had obviously prepared and rehearsed their songs with dedication and the standard of performance was, as always, very high indeed. Gemma Cross was our guest judge and she was very impressed by the musicality and confidence of the children. Many congratulations to all those who took part and, in particular, to our winners, who were: Zinnia M - Y2 Winner Samara P - Y3 Winner (and Middle School Winner) Eshanvi A - Y4 Winner Shruthi T - Y5 Winner Maya T - Y6 Winner (and Upper School Winner) Winners' trophies and certificates will be awarded in Monday's assembly. 4T Assembly - Gratitude We were treated to a wonderful class assembly by 4T this morning, whose focus was on Gratitude. They explained what Gratitude is and gave us lots of examples of what we might choose to be thankful for. They performed a lovely story about an old woman who was never satisfied, showing us how contentment comes from the heart and not from external possessions or surroundings. Finally, they sang their Gratitude song with real gusto and accomplishment, and led us in prayer. Well done, 4T, for conveying such an important value so enjoyably. We all now know that by being grateful for our troubles, we can turn them into blessings - which is a wonderful skill to have. The Whale Company Assembly and Eco Work On Monday we virtually welcomed Carolyn Newton, co-founder of The Whale Company, to be a guest speaker at our assembly. The Whale Company is an environmental organisation that connects people to nature by inspiring action and innovation through stand up paddle boarding, upcycling workshops, expeditions and campaigns. Carolyn talked to us about the global problem of plastic waste on our planet and showed us some very impactful photos of the effects that this waste has on the world's oceans and rivers. Carolyn also played a video of a paddle board she and her husband had made reusing plastic drink bottles, which they used to travel down the River Thames, litter picking and educating people on plastic waste enroute. This paddle board really impressed us all and became a talking point for the rest of the day! We learnt several thought provoking facts from this assembly and one that really stood out was that there is more micro plastic in the world's oceans than stars in our galaxy! There was a clear message that we urgently need to rethink how we use plastic and what small things we can do to help. The assembly ties in with our current school eco mission in taking steps to become plastic free. Each day our Eco reps have been collecting plastic litter in the playground and spreading the message that rubbish belongs in the bin and not on the floor!  We hope this assembly, along with our eco mission, will encourage everyone to take actions, however big or small, to remove plastic pollution and help our environment. For more information about The Whale Company and what they do, please visit the following link.thewhalecompany.org End of Term Events The school is busy planning and adapting our programme for several end of term events, including Sports Days for all year groups, the Year 6 play, Prizegiving and transfer meetings for parents. With the Covid restrictions due to be reviewed next week, we are not yet able to confirm whether we will be able to welcome parents to these events in any 'normal' way. We are sorry for the uncertainty but we know you will appreciate that we have to follow the government guidance rigorously at every step. You can see all of the proposed events listed on the school calendar. For now, we encourage you to save the dates if you would like to attend these events and meetings - but with the caveat that we will send out further information when we can, and that all plans are subject to change. There is further information about this year's Sports Days via the links below. This has also been sent out by email to parents today. Reception, Year 1 and Year 2 Sports Day Year 3 - 6 Sports Day School Uniform It was wonderful to see all the children back in full summer uniform for our class photographs. Please can you continue to send Upper School children to school in full summer uniform, which includes blazers, and the panama summer hats should now also be worn. It was noted that many pupils had to borrow blazers for the photographs thus please do ensure that your child has one.  The PA are hoping to set up second hand uniform sales at the Sports Day events. Further details to follow pending government guidance. Primary Mathematics Challenge We are delighted that six of our Year 6 pupils have been recognised in this National Challenge, achieving Silver and Bronze awards. Congratulations to Ben L and Reece G for achieving Silver and Riya C, Aaron S, Arjan D and Pavitar D for achieving Bronze. The National Quiz Club Finals are approaching with the Year 4 final next Thursday 17th June and the Year 5 and Year 6 finals on the 24th June. We wish all our teams well. CRUK - Cancer Research UK For many years now the school has been part of the Relay for Life Harrow event to raise much needed funds for Cancer Research. Unfortunately the event will not go ahead this year but as a school we will continue to support this most worthwhile charity which helps so many of us as the statistics show that one in every two of us will get cancer in our lifetime. In our final week of term the children in each class will participate in a range of fun activities and we will be asking you to make donations to our 'Just Giving' page.  Further details will be shared nearer the time but he week will commence on Monday 5th July with a non-uniform day for all the children.   
Posted on: 11/06/2021

Gratitude

Last night I had the pleasure of meeting many of our new Nursery parents as they visited Lower School to have their individual meetings with either Miss Carmichael or Mrs. Mann.   Throughout the evening I had wonderful conversations discussing the events of the past 16 months and listened to how different families have experienced the journey of the pandemic so far. What really struck me was the joy that so many parents expressed in being able to spend time with their children - despite mums and dads working from home and juggling work commitments, there really has been genuine joy in what these turbulent times have brought about. We often get lost in the sadness and fear that has been reported, but for so many families there has been new found family time and experiences which will never be able to be replicated under ‘normal’ working patterns for parents.  There was so much gratitude expressed from our Ducklings parents for the love and care that their children have had since joining us in September 2020. Parents are genuinely in awe of the all round development of their children, and in particular their oracy skills and levels of independence and confidence. I listened with great pride and shared all the parents' excitement as we prepare to welcome so many new families to our school. We have our new Ducklings intake, new Nursery children and many other families joining us throughout the school in September. However, before the new academic school year I know that so many of you will be taking time this summer to reap the benefits of living on this incredible island!  Our British coastline will be the busiest it has ever been as overseas travel is so restricted. Many of us will be taking to the coast and I for one need my frequent intake of coastal sea air!  The West Coast of Scotland, Oban and the Isle of Mull are my go to places and I am looking forward to catching up with family and friends. The beauty of the area and coastal scenery brings me great peace and pleasure. Over half term I managed yet another visit to the Kent coastline, as my daughter is currently in university in Canterbury. This time I found a beautiful Airbnb apartment near to Deal. Since she moved there, we have discovered an area of the UK which we absolutely love with the most stunning beaches: Whitstable, Broadstairs, Deal, Herne Bay, Ramsgate, Margate...each area has their own identity and the area is becoming very popular with ‘those from London’. Who knew that Margate was home to the Turner Contemporary art gallery! The attraction of the seaside here in the UK, regardless of what part of the UK, is special. The traditional piers, rugged coastline, undeveloped beaches, natural defences, the sea life, flowers and fauna really are unique to the UK - let alone the fish and chips and Mr Whippy!!! The UK coast brings me great spiritual support too and I find being by the coast refreshing, reinvigorating and relaxing. Our seas are mysterious and powerful and we must all respect this and be grateful for our proximity here in the UK to such incredible coasts. Wherever you are planning to visit this summer within the UK - I hope that some time near the sea is on your agenda.   Deal beach last Saturday! Mrs. Drummond

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