School News and Head's Blog

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Posted on: 17/05/2019

Weekly News - Friday 17th May 2019

Outstanding Musicians' Concert Last night the audience at All Saints Church was treated to a fantastic array of performances given by our extremely talented children, ranging from the impressionistic piano music of Debussy to the more traditional tunes of Amazing Grace. The concert opened with the orchestra playing and this was followed by our many soloists and instrumental groups, all ranging from Grade 1 to Grade 8. There was also an opportunity to hear staff perform as Mrs. Stubbs (flute), Mrs. Nash (violin) and Mrs. Maclean (cello), accompanied by Mr. Stubbs (piano), performed 'Allegro from Trio Sonata in G Minor by JC Pepusch. This really was a spectacular event and all the instrumentalists played with admirable confidence and panache! Well done to all involved.   National Numeracy Day National Numeracy Day on Tuesday provided an exciting impetus for teachers to enrich and extend the pupils' learning and it was wonderful to see so many children engaged in activities in and outside of the classroom. Robins Class Assembly Wow! Our Robins Nursery children showed how far they have come during their Nursery year as they performed a fantastic assembly all about the seasons of the year on Thursday. It is clear that their programme of rehearsals and performances during the Nursery year (including Harvest Festival, their Nativity Play and class assemblies, as well as the Speech Competition last term) has helped them to find their feet when standing up and speaking in front of an audience. Their confidence, their memories, their relaxed and engaging style and their superb voice projection really were astonishing. We all learnt much about the seasons too. Well done, Robins!   Noah's Ark Hospice Charity Walk Well done to all of the pupils, parents and staff who came together last Sunday to take part in a charity walk to raise funds for the Noah's Ark Children's Hospice. The walk alone raised £725 for the hospice, which is a wonderful achievement. The sense of community on the day was inspiring and we would like to pass on sincere thanks to all who gave up their time and energy to raise funds for this very worthwhile cause.     Borough Sports Success Our Year 3 and Year 4 teams were in the spotlight this week and showed their competitive spirit, taking part in Borough Tri Golf and Mini Tennis competitions.  Tri Golf Success Well done to our Year 3/4 Tri Golf team, who on Tuesday afternoon took part in the annual Hillingdon Tri Golf Festival at Hewens Academy. The team had a wonderful time competing against a time limit, improving their chipping and putting to score points. With ten teams in the festival, St. Helen's College Year 3/4 team came an impressive 3rd place. Congratulations to all of the team on such a great perfomance! Team members were: Anjika G, Maisie H, Maya T, Jena J, Krishav P, Joban K, Sahib N, Reece G.     Mini Tennis Excitement On Wednesday, three St. Helen's College teams took part in the annual schools tournament held at Tripletts Community Tennis Centre. The competition attracted 20 teams from across the Borough and each team consisted of two boys and two girls, who played singles matches against players from other schools. The event was played in a very supportive atmosphere, with parents spectating applauding the great play. Our pupils in particular showed a high degree of technical skill and tactical awareness when playing their matches - so much so that all three of our teams made it through to the quarter finals, where our C team faced Glebe and our B team faced our A team! The matches could not have been closer and semi finalists had to be decided on points countback as matches were drawn, but in the end it was only our A team that progressed. Incredibly, the semi final against Whiteheath had to be decided on countback too and unfortunately the St. Helen's College A team missed out by just a few points to Whiteheath, who went on to be the tournament's eventual winners. Well done to all of our team members who were a credit to their school with their sportsmanship and resilience.   A Team: Amar C, Anaiya L, Samir H, Hamdan U B Team: Fredericka T, Jena J, Zail T, Luka K C Team: Anaya K, Amber P, Reece G, Eshan N Co-Curricular Club Reminders We would like to remind parents that the following clubs will not be taking place next week, since Miss Walker will be in France with the Year 6 residential trip: Tuesday Y2/3 Athletics - lunchtime Thursday Y5/6 Rounders - after school May Half Term Tennis Camp Miss Walker will be running a May half term tennis camp at Tripletts Community Centre in Hayes. If your child would like to attend, you can find full details including booking details here. Residential Trips We wish our Year 4 and Year 6 children enjoyable and enriching times as they embark on their exciting residential trips to Flatford Mill (Year 4) and France (Year 6) in the coming week.
Posted on: 10/05/2019

Weekly News - Friday 10th May 2019

Staffing News Congratulations to Ms Matthews, our Head of EYFS, who has successfully completed and passed the Chartered College of Teaching CTeach programme. Ms Matthews is now recognised nationally as one of 180 teachers to be accredited with Chartered  Teacher status. The programme of study and research which she engaged in was rigorous and demanding and will continue to benefit the outcomes for our children. It is wonderful to have this level of expertise on our staff.  Year 3 Residential Trip To Shortenills  Our Year 3 pupils have had the most wonderful residential trip and taken part in a super programme of activities including orienteering, journey sticks and camp fire singing, to name but a few.  They also carried out numerous chores as they developed their maturity and independence, including making beds, clearing tables, setting up for breakfast!  Great teamwork and camaraderie from all. You can see some photos of their trip here. SATIPS Art Exhibition - Bromsgrove School We are delighted that some of our pupils' work has been exhibited at the national SATIPS Art Exhibition at Bromsgrove School near Birmingham.  Well done to Aleyna (1J), Aaryan (1HC), Avneet (2H), Chloe (5A), Jack (5G), Georgia (6W) and Zoe (6W). You can see their artwork here. Next year the exhibition will move closer to home (to the Royal Masonic School, Rickmansworth) and we hope that many of you will be able to visit. Musicians' Concert We look forward to seeing many of you at our annual Musicians' Concert next Thursday at 7 p.m. in All Saints Church. This event is always the most wonderful evening of musicality with a wide range of repertoires from the children and staff. Bikeability Well done to all our Year 6 pupils who have been attending the Saturday morning sessions which finish next week on Saturday 18th May.  It is good to know that our children are safe on their bikes and confident bike users.  Holiday Club - May Half Term Holiday Club bookings for May half term are now open. Please log in to your SchoolsBuddy account to make your bookings.  PA Summer Fete It’s that time of year when the PA are busy with “all hands on deck” preparations for our flagship event, the PA Summer Fete.  We would like to ask you to save the date: Date: Saturday 29th June 2019 Time: 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. Where: Upper School playground One of the aims of the PA is to encourage community, friendship and fun for our children, parents and guardians and the wider St. Helen's family. Over the years, the school fete has been a great event where the school community has come together by bringing their ideas, giving their time and providing much enthusiasm. The fete is organised by the PA committee which, at present, comprises eight full-time working mums, with amazing support from the PA Class Reps. If you are interested in joining the Committee, we always welcome new interest! We rely on your help for the fete and we will be putting out requests for help out via the newsletter in the next few weeks. However, there’s no time like the present so we are looking for immediate responses for the following: We Need You! At least 10 helpers from each year group to commit to helping on the day of the fete - we will start at 8 a.m. and finish clearing up at about 6 p.m. but you don’t need to do the whole stretch. If you can pledge help for all or part of the day, please do let us know. We need help on many levels such as running stalls, serving food, making tea and coffee, face painting, henna art, glitter tattoos, moving chairs and tables, putting marquees up, clearing litter, PA audio technicians and barbecuing. If you feel worried about taking on tasks yourself, why not get a team from your class together? Each class has a class rep, who will also be communicating with you. Donations We would be really grateful for donations of the following (NO BOOKS PLEASE): Nearly new, good condition soft toys - for the toy tombola Good condition used/new school uniform – for the uniform stall Brand new toys - for the raffle and toy tombola stalls New items or unwanted gifts - for the raffle If you work for a company who might like to donate anything to the fete please let us know. Fete collection bins will be put out at the entrances and exits on all three school premises after half term (Ducklings, Lower School and Upper School) for you to bring your donations, so please have a good sort out over half term.  We will empty the collection bins on a daily basis. Tuck Shop We run a tuck shop where we sell drinks, sweets, ice creams and crisps. If you own a shop or can get reduced/discounted rates, we’d love to hear from you! Food Stalls As in previous years, we will be having a range of stalls at the fete to cater for a variety of tastes. To help us make this happen, we are looking for volunteers to provide the cuisine - this could be anything from African to Mexican, Italian to Thai. We will also be looking for volunteers to man these stalls. If you are able to provide food for a stall or would like to volunteer to serve on a food stall (even if it’s only for an hour), please do get in touch.    If you have any ideas or suggestion for the fete, we’d love to hear from you and embrace these. We can only put this event on with your help so please do get in touch. It's an event that’s really enjoyed by the children and the whole St. Helen's College community. Contact us:  pa@sthelenscollege.com Thank you in advance for all of your help and support to make this year's fete a really special event for everyone!
Posted on: 3/05/2019

Weekly News - Friday 3rd May 2019

Year 5 Residential Trip - Isle of Wight Our Year 5 children return tired but happy today after an exhiliarating week spent on the Isle of Wight. They have taken part in all sorts of exciting and adventurous outdoor activities and carried out investigations to help them understand coastal erosion and other geographical concepts. You can see a few photographs of their week on our Galleries page here. Year 6 Trip to Battle of Britain Bunker Our Year 6 pupils had an outstanding day today as they visited the Battle of Britain Bunker, where they took part in interactive, hands-on workshops. Many members of the public, and the Bunker staff, commented on what a credit the pupils were to the school as they showed such excellent behaviour and courtesy.  Project Day We were delighted to have the IDEAS Bus visiting us at Upper School this week for our Project Day, during which Year 4 and Year 6 children took part in a wide range of creative activities, including coding, virtual reality art, robot racing, dance, music technology and photography. To read more about the importance and impact of the day, do read Mr. Tovell's blog about Creativity in Education which you can access here. Parent Presentation Thank you to all of the parents from Ducklings to Reception who attended last night's presentation on supporting reading and mathematics in the early years. The session was very well attended and the discussion and questions were a testament to the supportive environment we have here from both staff and parents to ensure that your children achieve their very best. Gymnastics Success We celebrated our Year 6 pupil Chiara L's further gymnastics success in assembly this week at Upper School.  In Spain over the Easter holidays she received a gold medal with her partner as they were crowned DIAC 11-16 WP champions! We wish Chiara well as she competes in the English Championships this weekend in Durham. Singing Competition Our very exciting Singing Competition for Years 2-6  will take place on Friday 7th June this year. Children should decide which category they would like to enter and choose a song. Next, fill in a slip and put into the box - these can both be found at the front of the hall and entries must be submitted no later than Thursday 9th May. Once again, there is no set theme this year as we would like to hear songs from all different genres and perhaps a range of songs throughout musical history. Singing in other languages is permitted, but please provide a translation of lyrics for the judge. The only restrictions are that we would like you to avoid singing pop songs and we would like to see only simple gestures and appropriate movements relevant to the performance. No dance moves please. The categories are: Best solo singer from each year group. Best duet Middle School Upper School Best group - trios (3) or quartets (4) only. Middle School Upper School   There should be just one solo entry per child but they may also participate in either a duet or a group. No choir songs please! A backing track is required (without words) for performance on the day; CD or ipod only. No piano accompaniments will be used this year, unless a child is playing the piano as part of their performance.   All winners will be invited to sing at the Singers’ Concert on 11th June. Should the number of entrants be high, preliminary rounds will take place before half term. Staff News Ducklings It is with sadness that we will be bidding Mrs. Haar and her family a farewell at the end of the summer term as they make the move to Devon. Mrs. Haar has had a long association with St. Helen's College and was instrumental in setting up our Kindergarten two years ago. We wish her well, and know that the new manager, when appointed, will be taking over a very happy and thriving setting. Nursery Miss Fleming and Mrs. Meeran will be leaving us this term to spend time travelling and with grandchildren respectively. Both have made such a difference to the children they have cared for at St. Helen's College and will be very much missed by us all. Reception Miss Malik will be leaving us at the end of the summer term after four years of service to work in a new environment. We are sure you will join us in wishing her well and in thanking her for all that she has done for your children and the school. Mrs. Duberley will also be leaving us at the end of this term after a very long career with the school. We wish her well in her retirement and thank her sincerely for her service over so many years! Staffing for September We will let parents know the staffing for classes in September in due course. Important Reminders We would like to remind you that children must not bring nuts, or any items containing nuts, to school. Suitable snacks for break time are fruit, raw vegetables or plain biscuits. Please note that the safety of your children is paramount to us, thus we request that when collecting children from the Upper School site, you keep younger siblings under close supervision and do not allow them to play on the grass opposite the school entrance on Parkway. 
Posted on: 26/04/2019

Weekly News - Friday 26th April 2019

Welcome back! It was wonderful to greet the children back to school this week for this very exciting summer term. I trust that you all have enjoyed the holidays and made the most of the incredible weather. Please ensure that all school uniform is labelled clearly and the girls are now all in summer uniform. Tights must not be worn with summer dresses and all long hair should be tied back neatly.  In sunny weather, sun hats must be worn when the children are in the playground so please do ensure that your child has one in school. We are delighted to welcome Miss Ruth Fahy to St. Helen's College as our new Welfare Officer. Miss Fahy has worked for many years in other schools in the same role and has spent time with Miss Lang over the Easter Holidays to have a thorough handover. The children from Y2 - Y6 met Miss Fahy this week in assembly and I am sure that you will all have the opportunity to meet her over the next few weeks. The Lower School were delighted to see their new locomotive and carriages. It has already proved to be a very popular addition to the playground, taking the children to all kinds of destinations! We would like to thank the PA for funding our new train and look forward to many more opportunities to play on it.         French Visitors The Upper School welcomed 80 visitors to school on Thursday as Year 5 and 6 from Catherine Dior school in Normandy met their Year 6 pen pals and spent the morning experiencing life in an English Prep School. The children were immersed in the English Language as they enjoyed breakfast and then took part in a carousel of activities run by St. Helen's College staff including cricket, charades, chess, garden games, tennis, table tennis and more! The Accent team provided a superb traditional roast which wowed the visitors before our Year 6 pupils led a wonderful assembly. We look forward to visiting their school in May. You can see photographs of the children enjoying their morning here. JRSOs Present To London Assembly at Guildhall A group of Year 5 girls did a terrific job over the Easter holiday and truly impressed the London Road Safety Council (councillors and officers from the 32 London Boroughs) when they visited London's Guildhall to give a presentation on their latest road safety initiative and the work they do to promote road safety here at St. Helen's College. They were a real credit to the school!              ABRSM Results We are delighted that we have now become an ABRSM examination centre for the children's music examinations and the pupils who sat their exams at the beginning of the Easter holiday reflected in assembly and felt that being in a familiar environment allowed them to relax more and focus on their musicality. Many congratulations to the children who achieved the following qualifications: Piano 6M Anisa W G1 Pass 3M Sahib N  Prep Pass Flute  5G Dhiya K G3 Merit 5A Ridhima M G2 Merit 5A Lily A G1 Pass 3M Raya M Prep Pass Clarinet  6W Georgia M G2 Pass 5G Marcus S G1 Distinction   Saxophone  4T Vidhit N G1 Merit Singing 5A Catherine L G4 Distinction 5G Jasmine B G3 Distinction 5A Esha T G2 Merit 5A Tanishka M G1 Pass 4KT Kimaya P G1 Pass Violin 6M Pritee T G3 Pass 5G Krisha S G1 Merit 4T Zara B G1 Pass 3B Eshan N G2 Pass Trumpet 5A Ciaran R G1 Pass 'Cello 4KT Vandan V G2 Pass 4KT Krishav P Prep Pass 3M Devan S Prep Pass BBC 500 Words Competition Many congratulations to Catherine and Laura in Year 5, whose creative stories have been selected to go through the next round of judging in this national completion. Tens of thousands of entries are received each year and we are delighted that the girls' creativity and writing skills have been recognised.  We wish them well for the next round and wait to hear further news. Gymnastics Success We were delighted to hear of yet further international success for Chiara L in Year 6, from her latest international gymnastics competition in Portugal in March. Chiara and her partner received a sliver medal, beating gymnasts from all over the world in the 11-16 age group. What a superb achievement at such a young age - well done, Chiara! Co-Curricular Activities Co-Curricular allocations for the summer term are now complete and these have been sent to parents by email. The following Upper School clubs still have a few places available; please contact admin@sthelenscollege.com as soon as possible if you would like your child to take part in one of these clubs. Tri-Golf - now available to Year 3 and Year 4 children as well as Year 5/6. Taking part is this club could lead to playing in the Year 3/Year 4 tri-golf team. Tuesdays 3.50 - 4.50 p.m. Jewellery Club (Y5/6) Wednesday 1.00 - 1.40 p.m. Printing Club (Y5/6) Friday 1.00 - 1.40 p.m. Yoga Club (Y4/5/6) Thursday 4.00 - 4.45 p.m. The following Lower School clubs still have a few places available; please contact lrooney@sthelenscollege.com as soon as possible if you would like your child to take part in one of these clubs. Spanish (Reception) - Monday lunchtime Spanish (Y1) - Thursday lunchtime All clubs begin this week with the exception of Upper School Gardening Club, Coding Club and Rounders. These begin the following week. We hope that your children will enjoy the amazing range of co-curricular activities being provided this term. Residential Trips 'Tis the season for our Year 3 to Year 6 pupils to embark upon their annual residential trips. We wish our Year 5 pupils a safe and successful trip as they head off to the Isle of Wight on Monday.  
Posted on: 29/03/2019

Weekly News - Friday 29th March 2019

Easter Greetings I wish all families a wonderful holiday over this spring season. Enjoy the weather, the outdoors and of course the company of your loved ones. We look forward to seeing you all on Thursday April 25th. Please remember that girls should return in summer uniform. I am sure you will all join me in thanking all of the staff at St. Helen's College for their hard work and commitment to the school and to your children over this term. I wish them all a restful, peaceful Easter holiday. General Knowledge In Upper School assemblies today, we discussed how children can improve their general knowledge. The children were most knowledgeable about how they could do this by visiting places of interest, talking to adults about the world around them and reading a wide range of books. I have challenged every child, if they do not already possess a children's encyclopaedia, to perhaps ask their parents very politely if this could be an Easter gift. The challenge is to learn a fact a day and wow their families and friends with a new piece of general knowledge every day during the holidays. Happy reading, happy talking, happy visiting! Farewell to Miss Lang The children gave Miss Lang a wonderful farewell in Upper School assembly today and she was presented with a card by our Head Boy and Head Girl, which had been signed by all of the children. We wish Miss Lang much happiness in her new role and look forward to seeing her as part of our Holiday Club staff during future holidays. We will welcome Miss Fahy to St. Helen's College as our new Welfare Officer after the Easter holidays. I am sure you will all enjoy getting to know Miss Fahy and welcoming her to our community. Musician of the Term Our Musician of the Term trophy goes to someone who has shown outstanding effort, commitment, dedication and achievement within the music department. An enormous well done to Pritee T. Pritee has always worked conscientiously and demonstrated enormous enthusiasm over several years in all aspects of music at St Helen’s College. She is an enthusiastic singer and has been a committed member of the senior choir over the last three years; was selected to join the Chamber Choir, and has participated in recordings and performed at two prestigious venues in London over the last two years; is a fluent recorder player and plays in the school orchestra; has excellent musical knowledge and regularly expresses opinions and contributes creative ideas successfully in each lesson, often injecting a sense of humour! Pritee has significantly grown in confidence, having shied away from performing in public; however, she is now ready to take her Grade 3 examination tomorrow. We wish her luck! Sports Personality of the Term Many congratulations to Ionie M, who has been awarded Sports Personality of the Term by her peers. Ionie is a sports scholar who has shown great levels of determination and excellence in every sport she plays. She has been a valued member of many school teams including the football, handball, hockey and netball, winning district and borough medals this term. She regularly plays for local clubs outside of school and has enjoyed regional success playing football and netball. Well done, Ionie!  World Book Day Winners The Middle and Upper School children were challenged to complete a World Book Day quiz. The prizes are a book of the children's choosing. Congratulations go to Anokhi (3M) and Aarna (5G). Exhibition Day It was wonderful to see so many families visit the school to celebrate their children's achievements on Saturday. I am sure you will agree with me that the school was abuzz with excitement and joy as you shared in your children's hard work and achievements. It was particularly lovely to hear all of the wonderful comments from families who saw our beautiful Lower School development for the first time. It's a Hat Trick! Many congratulations to our Year 6 table tennis team, who won the Borough table tennis competition for the third year running! The event took place at Oakwood School this week and was organised by Hillingdon Table Tennis Club. Our team of four, Rishi, Taran, Aaria and Mya, played in ranking order against teams from seven other Hillingdon Borough schools. Our team played extremely well showing consistency, creativity and good sportsmanship as they played 28 matches and only lost 2! The team were crowned Borough Champions and presented with the table tennis trophy plate by Hillingdon Mayor Cllr John Morgan who had seen them play and congratulated them on their excellent play. Well done to the team and special thanks also to our Year 6 Sports Captains, who organised matches on a table tennis ladder and final play offs over the last month during break times and lunchtimes to select the table tennis team.  Football We had our final football fixture of the season on Wednesday, losing 3-1 to St. Mary's. Mr. Dyson thought it was one of the best performances of the season as the team featured five debutants, including three Year 4 boys and two Year 6 children. Considering this, the effort and commitment was fantastic to see and it was a lovely way to finish the season. Overall, we finished mid table, winning three, losing five and Harry J was our top goal scorer with six goals, followed closely by Alex C with five. Many thanks to Mr. McLaughlin and Mr. Bustard for supporting Mr. Dyson throughout the season. PA Easter Raffle As has become traditional, the PA has donated prizes for a raffle for the children this Easter.  All of the children have been included in this free Easter egg draw with one prize drawn for each class. Congratulations to the lucky winners; we hope you enjoy your prizes! Many thanks to the PA for their kind donations. Competition Reminders uTalk Language Competition Pupils in Years 1 - 6 are invited to participate in a pilot competition in preparation for the new national uTalk competition which is being relaunched in September 2019.  The uTalk Challenge Pilot is a competition giving primary school age children the chance to learn a new language or reinforce a known language using the uTalk app. The competition will run between March and June 3 and our pupils will compete against each other. There will only be one round of the competition this year and the language will be Spanish. Some small prizes will be awarded in each school.  The new software this year will permit us to have a school dashboard where we can monitor progress. This will be available on the Learning Portal, so that the children may enjoy the excitement of checking the leader board to see how they are getting on in a live competition with their peers. If you would like your child/children to participate in this modified competition this year, please email Mrs. Stark at tstark@sthelenscollege.com. The cost is £5 per child, which will be payable on SchoolsBuddy after you have registered your interest. Midas Competition We invite pupils to enter a national competition run by the writers of Minimus, the textbook we use in Year 5 Latin lessons. Pupils are invited to create an interpretation of the story of Midas - a copy of which has been provided by Mrs. Stark. Pupils are invited to submit entries in the following categories: A.   Art e.g. painting, drawing, collage, poster, craftwork etc. B.   Creative Writing e.g. poem, play-script, 1st person account, diary or journal etc.   C.   Drama – a version of the story, written and performed by pupils, and submitted as a private video link or DVD. D.   Animation – a version of the story, written and animated by an individual, and submitted as a private video link. Entries need to be submitted by 22nd April at the latest, but can be submitted any time before then.  We really hope your children will be inspired to produce some creative and original work and we look forward to seeing the entries coming in. Just hand them to your form teacher, who will pass them on to Mrs. Stark, or give them to Mrs. Stark directly. tstark@sthelenscollege.com Summer Term Menu The Summer Term Menu has been posted to the School Documents page of the website. Easter Sports Camps If your child is keen on keeping active, why not come along to one of the Easter tennis or multisports camps being run locally. Full details are available here and here.
Posted on: 22/03/2019

Weekly News - Friday 22nd March 2019

Exhibition Day - Tomorrow! We are very much looking forward to welcoming all of our families to Exhibition Day tomorrow to celebrate the wonderful work your children have been engaged in throughout the year so far. Please do join us at 9.30 a.m. at Lower School for a glass of Bucks Fizz and the opportunity to visit our stunning new Lower School classrooms. Ducklings and Upper School will be open from 10.00 a.m. for your children to show you around and refreshments will be available in the Evans Hall from 10.00 a.m. Speech Competition On Monday 25th March we will be hosting the Junior and Senior School Speech Competition finals.  Parents of Junior Speech Competition finalists (Years 1 - 3) are invited for refreshments in the Evans Hall from 8.15 a.m., before taking their seats in the Upper School Hall for the competition, which will begin at 9.00 a.m.  The Senior Speech Competition finals (Years 4 - 6) will begin at 2.00 p.m. Parents may enter the school to take their seats from 1.50 p.m.  For both competitions, children will perform their pieces one year group at a time. The children will receive feedback from our guest judge, Reverend Ken Kingston. Each finalist will receive a finalist certificate; there will also be some 'highly commended' awards and a year group winner for each year group. When all year groups have finished, an overall winner will be announced, receiving the Speech Competition trophy.  The criteria for judgement are expression, projection and clarity of the voice only. No gestures will be counted towards the judgement and choreographed actions are not to be used. Good luck to all the children who will be taking part in the finals; we wish you well with your practice and preparation!  At Lower School, the Nursery and Reception Poetry Recitation will take place on Tuesday 26th March and all Nursery and Reception parents are warmly invited to attend. Coffee will be served from 8.15 a.m. in the Methodist Church Hall for Nursery and Reception parents. Nursery parents should take their seats in the Lower School Hall ready for the recitation to begin at 8.45 a.m. Reception parents will be called through from the Methodist Church Hall to take their seats when the Nursery have finished (expected to be at around 9.20 a.m.). We do hope many of you will be able to join us for what is always a very special morning! Quiz Team Semi-Final Our Quiz Team took part in the Prep School General Knowledge Quiz semi-final this week at Merchant Taylor's Prep School. The children performed extremely well against 11 other prep schools who had also reached the semi-finals. After some very tough rounds, we were delighted to learn that our children came in 5th place overall.     Art Competition If you have a budding artist in the family, why not encourage them to design a Starborg card for the London Borough of Hillingdon's Summer Reading Challenge competition. Starborg cards are like Top Trumps cards; your child should use their imagination to design their Starborg, which must be colourful, based on an animal and have some special super powers (preferably space-related to tie in with this year's theme). You can check out the current Starborgs for ideas at www.hillingdon.gov.uk/starborgs. Designs may be hand-drawn or digital but must be submitted electronically by email to summerreadingchallenge@hillingdon.gov.uk by Wednesday 1st May. The best Starborgs will be chosen to be part of the new pack of 20 cards, which are given away in their thousands to children across the borough as part of the summer reading challenge. Good luck to all entrants. Chess Success! Our chess teams defeated local rivals St. Bernadette's in their match on Thursday this week. Matches against St. Bernadette's are always closely contested and of a high quality so very well done to our teams for securing the win! Team members were: A team 1. Michael K (captain) 2. Alexander S 3. Anson L 4. Benjamin L R. Sulaiman M B team 1. Aditya S (captain) 2. Jai D 3. Aarna A 4. Ibraheem F R. Aaron S In round 1, we won 4 boards and so did St Bernadette's, so after the break we resumed play level. However, in round 2 we managed to win 6 boards to 2, so the match finished a 10-6 win for St. Helen's College. This has been an exciting culmination of school chess this term and we are looking forward to an equally exciting next term. Uxbridge Chess Club Open New Branch At St. Helen's College! The very popular and successful Uxbridge Chess Club are today launching a new Friday session at St. Helen's College. If you have a son or daughter who is interested in playing chess, or who already plays chess at school and would like to pursue this interest further, do encourage them to join.  The club is launching on Friday 22nd March and sessions will run from 6.00 - 7.30 p.m. on Fridays in The Evans Hall. Participants will have the chance to take part in all sorts of competitions and the club is open to all children aged from 6-15, not just St. Helen's College children, so there is the opportunity to bring along friends and family from other schools too. Uxbridge Chess Club is run by two St. Helen's College parents who, like Mr. Foale and Mr. Crehan himself, are passionate about chess and about inspiring a new generation of chess players. As a game, chess helps to nurture memory skills, strategic thinking, gameplay, time management and more so it is not only extremely enjoyable for children, but extremely educational too! We do hope that many of you will encourage your children to attend this club. Full details, costs and arrangements are available here. End of Term Arrangements Term ends next Friday, 29th March, and arrangements are as follows. Ducklings and Nursery children should be collected at 11.50 a.m., Reception children at 12.00 p.m. and Year 1 children at 12.10 p.m. Upper School children will attend our end of term Easter Service at All Saints Church at 11.00 a.m. and all parents are warmly invited to join us for this. Pupils will then return to school for collection at 12.10 (Year 2), 12.20 (Years 3/4) and 12.30 (Years 5/6). We ask parents NOT to park along Parkway so that traffic may flow freely during the busy end of term pick up. Co-Curricular Programme - Summer Term - Bookings Now Open Sign up for summer term co-curricular activities opens today and closes next Wednesday (27th March). Please log in to your SchoolsBuddy account to indicate your child's preferences and please remember only to indicate a preference for a club if your child would definitely like to take part. Allocations will be confirmed at the start of next term.
Posted on: 15/03/2019

Weekly News - Friday 15th March 2019

Year 3's Amazing Drama Production - The Pirates of the Curry Bean It is hard to describe the atmosphere of the Winston Churchill Hall on Tuesday evening as our Year 3 children performed their Spring show, The Pirates of the Curry Bean, to family, friends, staff and peers. We were all taken on a highly entertaining and poignant journey on the high seas to 'Lumbago' and there was really superb acting, dancing and singing. Congratulations to all of the crew involved - you thoroughly deserved the rapturous applause that greeted you at the end of such an outstanding production! Uxbridge Chess Club open new branch at St. Helen's College! The very popular and successful Uxbridge Chess Club are soon to launch a new Friday session at St. Helen's College. If you have a son or daughter who is interested in playing chess, or who already plays chess at school and would like to pursue this interest further, do encourage them to join.  The club is launching on Friday 22nd March and sessions will run from 6.00 - 7.30 p.m. on Fridays in The Evans Hall. There is the opportunity for participants to take part in all sorts of competitions and the club is open to all children aged from 6-15, not just St. Helen's College children, so there is the opportunity to bring along friends and family from other schools too. Uxbridge Chess Club is run by two St. Helen's College parents who, like Mr. Foale and Mr. Crehan himself, are passionate about chess and about inspiring a new generation of chess players. As a game, chess helps to nurture memory skills, strategic thinking, gameplay, time management and more so it is not only extremely enjoyable for children, but extremely educational too! We do hope that many of you will encourage your children to attend this club. Full details, costs and arrangements are available here. Primary Maths Challenge Success Many congratulations to Wenru and Arushi, who were awarded silver medals in the Primary Mathematics Challenge. This national event tests the children's logical thinking and application of mathematics skills to some very challenging problems. Nearly 1600 schools and around 67,000 pupils took part in the challenge and only 760 children were awarded a silver or gold medal. The girls' scores put them in the top 1% of those who entered. uTalk Language Competition Pupils in Years 1 - 6 are invited to participate in a pilot competition in preparation for the new national uTalk competition which is being relaunched in September 2019.  The uTalk Challenge Pilot is a competition giving primary school age children the chance to learn a new language or reinforce a known language using the uTalk app. The competition will run between March and June 3 and our pupils will compete against each other. There will only be one round of the competition this year and the language will be Spanish. Some small prizes will be awarded in each school.  The new software this year will permit us to have a school dashboard where we can monitor progress. This will be available on the Learning Portal, so that the children may enjoy the excitement of checking the leader board to see how they are getting on in a live competition with their peers. If you would like your child/children to participate in this modified competition this year, please email Mrs. Stark at tstark@sthelenscollege.com. The cost is £5 per child, which will be payable on SchoolsBuddy after you have registered your interest. Comic Relief Fundraising St. Helen's College turned red today as the children and staff entered into the spirit of Comic Relief, raising money with cake sales and Red Nose Day activities.  Well done to 4T and 4KT for organising the charity day, and thank you to all parents for supporting the cause with your kind donations.       Year 6 Spanish Trip to BFI Year 6 enjoyed an outing to the British Film Institute on Tuesday to enrich their Spanish learning. They watched a Spanish film with language appropriate to their stage of learning, and were able to understand most of it! They also took part in Spanish workshops.         6M Assembly - William Shakespeare Well done to the children of 6M who presented a most informative, interesting and entertaining assembly this morning all about William Shakespeare. Through speech and song, the pupils told us about Shakespeare's life and work. We learnt the history of The Globe Theatre and about how it was re-built in recent times to recreate the theatre experience of Elizabethan times. We also learnt that Year 6 will be performing 'Romeo and Juliet' next term as their end of school production, and that they are all currently hard at work discovering the meaning of the play and preparing for their auditions. Thank you, 6M, for sharing your knowledge and enthusiasm with us.   Year 6 Citizenship Day This week our Year 6 pupils visited Brunel University for the annual Junior Citizenship Day. This was a valuable opportunity to learn about many different aspects of keeping safe throughout life after primary school, including use of public transport, fire safety, animal cruelty, substance abuse and more. There were ten informative and fast paced sessions full of important knowledge, designed to help our children tackle some of the challenges of adolescence.      Swimming Gala Well done to the children who attended last night's swimming gala. Competition was fierce and the St. Helen's College pupils performed well in their individual heats, with several reaching the finals. Particular congratulations go to Rhea A-V, who was awarded a bronze medal in the Freestyle final.         Staff News We welcomed Mrs. Brooks to the staff this week, who has joined our team of Upper School lunchtime supervisors. Mrs. Brooks has enjoyed getting to know the children throughout the week and embraced the St. Helen's College community.   Mrs. Speechley, who is stepping back from her lunchtime supervision role to spend more time with her family, joined the Middle School children for lunch today as our VIP guest and was presented with flowers and a gift by Year 3 School Council members. We would like to thank Mrs. Speechley for all the care she has given to the children over the past four years.         After 13 years of loyal service to the school, we will be bidding farewell to Miss Lang, our Welfare Officer, at the end of the Spring term. Miss Lang has looked after not only the pupils but staff welfare over the years and shown so much care and compassion in her role.  She will be very much missed at St. Helen's College but we wish her well as she takes on a new and exciting role at another school. I am sure that many of you will see Miss Lang again as she hopes to be part of our Holiday Club team.  Once a Helenian, always a Helenian!  ABRSM examinations We are delighted that we will be hosting our first set of ABRSM music examinations here at St. Helen's College on Saturday 30th March. Thank you to our peripatetic teachers for making this possible and I am sure that all our students who are preparing for their examinations will feel very at home on the day.   Exhibition Day We would like to remind parents that our annual Exhibition Day will take place on Saturday 23rd March. This year, to celebrate our new look Lower School, we would like to invite all parents and staff for a Bucks Fizz reception at Lower School from 9.30 a.m. The official timings of Exhibition Day at Ducklings and Upper School will be 10.00 a.m. until 12.00 p.m. Refreshments will be served from 10.00 a.m. in the Evans Hall. We do hope that you will all take this opportunity to celebrate your children's hard work and achievements on this special day. All children should wear full school uniform to attend school on Exhibition Day please. Parents are always very generous with donating flowers and vases for display on Exhibition Day. Please would you send your donations of flowers (and named vases, which will be returned to you) into school with your child on Friday morning. Many thanks, in advance, for your generosity. The Upper School Library will be fully open for the first time. Please come and see where Upper School children spend many hours relaxing and curling up with a good book! We would love parents to rediscover and share favourite books from their own childhood and explore the full range of wonderful modern authors available to read today. Parents will be able to see the comprehensive information resources in the library to spark curious minds and learn about the various reading challenges on offer. Parents are reminded that Friday 22nd March is a half day to allow the school to prepare for Exhibition Day and that there is no Funtasia After School Club on Friday 22nd March. Speech Competition Finals Mrs. Smith and I have had the most wonderful week listening to the semi-finalists for our forthcoming Speech Competition. Congratulations to all the pupils who have worked so hard learning the wonderful (and, in some cases, rather challenging) poems. You should all be very proud of your achievements.  The finals of both the Junior (Years 1-3) and Senior (Years 4-6) Speech Competitions will take place on Monday 25th March. Parents of finalists are invited to join us and will receive a letter with details early next week. We are very much looking forward to what promises to be an excellent day of poetry and performance! Easter Holiday Club Bookings Now Open Bookings for our popular Easter Holiday Club are now open. Please log in to your SchoolsBuddy account to book places for your children as soon as possible. Holiday Club will run from 29th March (half day) until Thursday 18th April. Places are allocated on a first come, first served basis. Midas Competition We invite pupils to enter a national competition run by the writers of Minimus, the textbook we use in Year 5 Latin lessons. Pupils are invited to create an interpretation of the story of Midas - a copy of which will be provided by Mrs. Stark. Pupils are invited to submit entries in the following categories: A.   Art e.g. painting, drawing, collage, poster, craftwork etc. B.   Creative Writing e.g. poem, play-script, 1st person account, diary or journal etc.   C.   Drama – a version of the story, written and performed by pupils, and submitted as a private video link or DVD. D.   Animation – a version of the story, written and animated by an individual, and submitted as a private video link. Mrs. Stark has talked to some of the classes about this and will talk to others next week. Entries need to be submitted by 22nd April at the latest, but can be submitted any time before then.  We really hope your children will be inspired to produce some creative and original work and we look forward to seeing the entries coming in. Just hand them to your form teacher, who will pass them on to Mrs. Stark, or give them to Mrs. Stark directly.
Posted on: 8/03/2019

Weekly News - Friday 8th March 2019

It has been a week of books, books and more books for children across the school as we have celebrated World Book Day and all that reading brings to our lives! On Monday, the children were treated to a visit from The Book Bus, which gave them an opportunity to choose new books for the school libraries at Lower School and Upper School. Visiting authors at both Lower School and Upper School inspired pupils with their stories and were able to share information about how and why they decided to write books. Mrs. McLaughlin visited Lower School and talked to the children about her efforts to tackle climate change by becoming a children's author. Onjali Rauf, author of the Blue Peter Award winning book 'The Boy At The Back Of The Class', spoke to Upper School children about her involvement in the refugee crisis. Across the school, children have enjoyed reading to themselves and to others and having stories read to them by their teachers and by visiting readers, including other teachers, librarians, parents and visitors. Here you can see our youngest children, the Ducklings, enjoying a story read by Zoe's mummy. Zoe's mum read the story in Chinese to the children, who listened intently and were fascinated. Then she taught our Ducklings some Chinese words.         Chamber Choir Perform At The Royal Festival Hall We were extremely proud of our Chamber Choir this week as they took to the stage at the Royal Festival Hall to compete against 17 other school in National Finals of the Barnardo's Schools Choir Competition. The choir sang two pieces: So Long, Farewell (from The Sound of Music) and For The Beauty Of The Earth by John Rutter. Schools had travelled from far and wide from across the UK, including from Wales, York and Glasgow. The pupils participated in the competition in the morning and, before preparing for the mass choir performance and evening concert, we took a cruise to Greenwich taking in the wonderful sights of London. Although we were not the winning choir on the day, it an incredible achievement to make it to the finals and to perform in such a prestigious venue.     1J Assembly - World Book Day World Book Day was truly embraced by 1J in their reading assembly. It was evident that each and every one of them is an avid reader and they reminded all the grown ups of the importance of losing ourselves in a book. Congratulations 1J!        4T Assembly - Easter Gratitude The story of Easter and gratitude were interwoven into 4T's most succinct and professional presentation in assembly. As their St. Helen's College pledges came together and the school crest appeared, we were reminded that, to be inspirational, one needs to be proactive. Well done 4T!       Year 6 Visit The Globe Having studied Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet in English over the last few weeks, Year 6 pupils visited The Globe Theatre this week to watch a RSC production of Romeo and Juliet. They were inspired by the performance and are very much looking forward to the forthcoming auditions for their summer production of this wonderful play.       Netball Finalists Our Year 5/6 netballers took part in the local district netball rally last Saturday held at Ryefield School. Our B team gained valuable match experience and improved their play throughout the morning, finishing in 3rd place in their group. Our A team's confidence developed as they won all their matches in the group stages to reach the knockout stages. In the quarter finals they beat St. Andrew's and in the semi finals they beat Cherry Lane to reach the final to play Hermitage. They played incredibly well against Heritage, who were formidable opponents, and the final score was 5-2 to Hermitage. Our A team were presented with runner up silver medals and it was announced that they had qualified for the Borough Netball Finals.  The Borough Netball Finals (for the top twelve qualifying schools) took place on Wednesday afternoon this week at Newnham School in Eastcote. In wet and windy conditions, our team battled on court  in a tough competition. The team won three matches, drew one match and lost one match to finish in 9th place overall.  In the local netball league, St. Helen's finished in 4th place this season. The team support from parents over the course of the season has been superb, so thank you parents! It has also been great to see many girls taking up the opportunity to continue playing at local netball club Blaze.  Well done to all the girls involved: A team - Ionie M, Hebe E, Aaria K, Zoe K, Georgia M, Rhea Sa, Wenru D, Rhea A-V, Jada P B team - Tamara A, Eshar S, Laura B, Chloe W, Ruby D, Minna H, Grace B, Kyra S, Krisha S, Mya S Hockey Result Our hockey team had a very enjoyable match on Monday afternoon against St. Benedict's. There was some outstanding effort and passing, with numerous chances at either end. Unfortunately, we lost the game but everybody on both sides really enjoyed the afternoon. Our goals were scored by Pavitar and Hebe. Well done to the team: Pavitar D, Hebe E, Ionie M, Jayan C, Luke J, Mya S, Agastya S.  Year 3 Spring Production - 'The Pirates of the Curry Bean' On Tuesday 12th March, Year 3 will be performing their production at the Winston Churchill Hall and children in Nursery, Reception, Year 1 and Year 2 will watch the dress rehearsal in the morning. Please drop children in Nursery, Reception, Year 1 and Year 2 to at the Winston Churchill Hall in the morning from 8 a.m. onwards (to arrive by 8.30 a.m.). The children will return to school by coach after watching the performance. Year 3 parents have been contacted separately with information about the arrangements for Year 3. Parents' Parking Pledge Well done to our Year 5 Junior Road Safety Officers (JRSOs) and Year 1 Mini Road Safety Officers (MRSOs) who have been promoting our Parent Parking Pledge initiative this week. So far, over 100 families have taken the pledge and top marks to the parents of Wrens class, with twenty parents who have already signed up to the pledge! Thank you to all those who have already registered; your special parent parking pledge car sticker will be sent home next week. Please display these as you would have done with tax discs. If you have not signed up please click here to register online or pop in to Upper School next Wednesday before school, when our JRSOs will be on hand with laptops available to help you register.  Red Nose Day - Friday 15th March On Friday 15th March, Year 4 will be leading the fundraising events for Comic Relief. It is a wonderful cause and we thank you in advance for your children’s participation and generous contributions. At Upper School, we are asking the children to make a £2 donation to wear their own clothes (preferably including something red and no football kits please). In addition to this, Year 4 will be hosting a cake sale where there will a range of delicious cakes and biscuits on sale, costing either 50p or £1 and with a maximum spend of £2 per child. Please note all ingredients will be listed at the point of sale. We are asking children at Ducklings and Lower School to make a £2 donation to wear their own clothes (preferably including something red and no football kits please). This donation will also enable them to decorate a biscuit at school during the day. Exhibition Day We would like to remind parents that our annual Exhibition Day will take place on Saturday 23rd March. This year, to celebrate our new look Lower School, we would like to invite all parents and staff for a Bucks Fizz reception at Lower School from 9.30 a.m. The official timings of Exhibition Day at Ducklings and Upper School will be 10.00 a.m. until 12.00 p.m. Refreshments will be served from 10.00 a.m. in the Evans Hall. We do hope that you will all take this opportunity to celebrate your children's hard work and achievements on this special day. Parents are reminded that Friday 22nd March is a half day to allow the school to prepare for Exhibition Day and that there is no Funtasia After School Club on Friday 22nd March. School At Work Open Morning - Tuesday 7th May 2019 Flyers and posters advertising our next School At Work Open Morning are being sent home with your children today. In the past, parents have been very helpful in displaying these in local businesses and passing them on to friends who might have babies or young children and who might be interested in visiting the school. The vast majority of our new families come to us through word of mouth recommendation and we are very grateful to our parents for being such wonderful ambassadors for St. Helen's College. We would be most grateful for your support in displaying or distributing flyers again this year. Do let us know if you can make use of any more!  
Posted on: 15/02/2019

Weekly News - Friday 15th February 2019

Half Term Activities Although no formal homework is set during the half term break, the teachers are offering some optional activities for pupils to keep them occupied. Please read on to find out more about these optional opportunities.   World Book Day - 7th March This year for World Book Day our theme will be 'Stories from Around the World.' We have a range of fantastic activities planned for the children throughout the week including a visiting book bus, author talks and book quizzes. We will not be dressing up for Book Day this year; however, we will be creating a photograph compilation display of the children in traditional dress from around the world. Form teachers will issue guidelines for the challenge following the half term break. "There are many little ways to enlarge your world.  Love of books is the best of all.” – Jacqueline Kennedy Mindful Sit Congratulations to the whole school for taking part in the Mindful Sit this week, sitting in complete silence for five minutes to experience the sound of silence. Many thanks to the Year 5 Mindfulness Ambassadors, who led the assemblies in Lower School and Upper School to explain what Mindfulness is and to demonstrate some practices. True ambassadors for how to be mindful! Assemblies This Week Money Money Money! 6W took on the challenge of financially educating the children in Upper School with their assembly all about money this week. They presented ideas about how to earn pocket money and how to make financially responsible decisions about how to use your money. The 6W pupils explained you can EARN, SAVE, SPEND or DONATE your money. There was even a working cash machine in the assembly issuing money! Developing our pupils' financial literacy and ability to manage money is one of our PSHCE themes and such an important life skill, so the 6W pupils have challenged the pupils in Upper School to take on an optional half term pocket money challenge. They have encouraged the children to find some helpful jobs they can do around the house to earn a little bit of pocket money and everyone has been given a half term 'Money Flow Diary' to complete to show how they EARN, SAVE, SPEND and DONATE their money during the week. After half term they will share their diaries and what they did with their class in PSHCE lessons.  The themes of 6W's money assembly and ideas about teaching your child about financial responsibility can be found on the Cha-Ching Family Zone here. The resources are excellent and may be of interest to families for developing the child's life skills with money.  Valentine's Day There was so much love in Lower School this week as Kingfishers Reception class performed their wonderful assembly celebrating the history and traditions of Valentine's Day.  We even had a marriage celebrated on the day with our bride and groom!  A delightful performance by all the children and so poignant as the children shared their Valentine's messages to their families.                 Nursery Counting Cushions The Nursery children absolutely loved counting on their new cushions this week, which have been kindly made by Brenda Hunt. The children used the Numicon pieces to count and then matched them to the cushions. Thank you very much Brenda!           Owls Visit the Art Studio The children of Owls Reception class visited the Upper School Art Studio and Miss Dear this week to create space-themed t-shirts for their upcoming assembly. The children were very excited to come over to the Upper School and see the Art Studio and they created some lovely t-shirt designs!         Year 2 Trip to Heath Robinson Museum Our Year 2 pupils enjoyed a super trip to the Heath Robinson Museum in Pinner this week, where they looked at the different illustrations Heath Robinson had made and found clues in his pictures, like a swinging cat in a box. The pupils made felt with different coloured materials, using water and soap. It was great fun to have soapy hands!       JRSO Conference Our Junior Road Safety Officers were invited to attend an event at Brunel University run by the London Borough of Hillingdon’s Road Safety & School Travel Team this week. Our team, consisting of six pupils from Year 5 (Catherine L, Laura B, Jasmine B, Dhiya K, Esha T & Anaiya B) were invited to participate in a number of fun educational activities including a theatre performance, workshops and the Dragons Den (during which they had to present an idea and pitch for funding). Over the past few weeks the team have been discussing ideas to improve road safety or school travel and they came up with the idea of a loyalty scheme to encourage safe, active walking to school.  They investigated their ideas, looking at how it would be achieved and what the rewards for participating would be.  They then had to research the costs involved and produce a proposal in the form of a presentation. On the day the girls were excited but a little nervous and were part of the first group to be called in to face the “Dragons”. They came across confidently and gave a polished presentation. The Dragon’s commented on their well thought out ideas and clear costings.   Councillor Burrows remarked that he has never had a school ask for funding for a loyalty scheme, and he was impressed at the innovative idea to encourage everyone to make a commitment to our scheme. At the end of the day we all sat nervously waiting to find out if our pitch to the Dragons had been successful and I am delighted to say that not only did they endorse our idea but actually gave us more money they we had asked for, which is fantastic. This will enable to JRSOs not only to implement their idea but promote their scheme throughout the school with posters and banners. They very much deserved the funding that they received and we look forward to seeing their Active Walking Loyalty Scheme in action.  Well done girls.         Sports Results The Year 5/6 Netball B team played two matches this week, successfully winning both with improving performances. In their first match on Wednesday against Ryefield School they won 5 - 1. They then played St. Mary's School B team on Thursday, winning 3 - 0. The Year 5/6 Netball A team played St. Mary's School A team too on Thursday, dominating their match to win 12 - 0.  Our school football team resumed matches after the winter break with a 2-0 win against St. Andrew's, with Harry and Alex scoring the goals. This was followed up this week with a convincing 4-0 win over Laurel Lane School, with Alex scoring 2, Harry netting one and Jack H getting his first goal for the school. The team has started very well and hopefully we can keep this going for the remaining three matches. We welcome two new additions, Thomas W and Jack H, to the team. BBC 500 Words Competition The annual BBC 500 Words Short Story Competition is now open and entries are being accepted until 8th March for ages 5 - 13. This is a fun writing activity for the children with some fantastic prizes to be won, so we hope that you will encourage your child to enter. Half term is a super time for the children to plan and write a short story. An adult must submit a child's entry online so please feel free to submit your child's entry at home; alternatively, you may email the entry to your child's class teacher and we can submit it for you. Here is a link to the main competition information:  https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p00rfvk1 Here is the link to the resource pack, including planning tips and activities:  http://downloads.bbc.co.uk/radio2/500words/500_words_2019_resource_pack.pdf Good luck to all entrants! Waste Week: 25th-29th March As part of waste week there will be a host of assemblies taking place by Mrs. Mann, Mrs. McLaughlin, Miss Dear and the Eco Reps. The theme this year is 'Say no to single use plastic', so we would like to set an optional half term challenge of taking photos of 'alternatives used instead of plastic'. These photos will then be displayed on our Eco Board for all to see. Please bring the photos into school and give to your class teacher no later than Friday 1st March. During the week, the Eco Reps will keep a record of single use plastic they see from their class and the results will be shared in assembly, the aim being that all classes have 0% single use plastic. Children will be focussing on the theme in more detail in their lessons during that week to discuss, learn and debate this very important issue.  We look forward to seeing all your photos after the half term. 

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