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Posted on: 15/01/2021

Weekly News - Friday 15th January 2021

Remote Learning Many thanks to all of the parents who are supporting children at home with their remote learning. It is wonderful to hear about how independent the children are becoming as we embark upon our next phase of school closure. We understand the pressures that many of you are under, trying to juggle working from home, and we are incredibly grateful for all that you are doing to support the children's learning.  In assembly I shared some good tips for the children which you may wish to reiterate them: - make sure you have an organised workstation  - know your timetable: have it printed out next to you - have what you need for the day to hand e.g. pencil case, water bottle and any other resources your teacher has told you that you will require - communicate: ask for help if you are not sure what is being asked from you but remember the 4B's: brain, book, buddy, boss. In other words, read the instructions again, look at your books to help you (or Google classroom), talk to your friends to clarify and remember that you can also ask your teachers for help. We published these top tips for parents and top tips for children during our last lockdown and you may wish to look at these again.  To assist our teachers' wellbeing, we ask parents to follow our school email protocol and avoid sending emails to the teachers between 7 p.m. and 7 a.m. We are encouraging all staff to switch off phone notifications and this may be good advice for all parents too. I am sure that many of your companies have similar protocols - it is crucial that we all step away from our devices and give ourselves some time.  Guess the Place Today we launched a new weekly 'Guess the Place' challenge in assembly. Each week, a different photo will be placed on the Learning Portal for the children to try and identify. For pupils in Years 1 and Y2 the challenge will be to identify different places in London and for pupils in Years 3 - 6 the challenge will be to identify different places from around the UK. The children will be able to submit their answers on the Learning Portal. Each week in our Friday assemblies the correct answer will be revealed and the next week's photos will be shared. We hope this will be fun for the whole family as we try to 'Guess the Place'! Writing Challenge January heralds once again the launch of the Chorleywood Bookshop Children’s Writing Competition and our children will be excited to know that Cressida Cowell, the Children’s Laureate and author of the How to Train Your Dragon and Wizards Of Once series, will be judging the entries in each of the competition’s three categories! Last year, this competition attracted over 500 entries from primary and secondary schools. The standard is extraordinary across each age category and previous well-known authors who have judged the event are invariably impressed by the standard as well as the variety.  This year’s theme is Friendship, a theme which should enable all those who take part to focus on positive messages. With challenges targeted to everyone from the youngest children in Reception to the oldest in Key Stage 4, we hope many of our pupils (and perhaps older ex-pupils) will take part. Full details of the competition and the relevant paperwork are now available on the bookshop's website at https://chilternbookshops.co.uk/schools-2/childrens-creative-writing-comp-2021/ Good luck, everyone. Do let us know how you get on. Fun Friday Next Friday, for a bit of fun, we are asking pupils at Upper School to wear a hat or fun headwear creation when they come online for our morning assembly. The children at Lower School might like to wear their hats when they have a Google Meet or perhaps to upload a photograph of themselves in their hats to Tapestry or Google Classroom. We look forward to seeing everyone's fun headwear! Fitness Challenges National survey evidence from the last lockdown found that around 36% of children were doing less physical activity than usual, with only 22% getting their recommended daily activity of 60 active minutes and a worrying 9% getting no physical activity.  Regular weekly PE activities continue to be provided in class Google classrooms and on Tapestry for all of our pupils, and we encourage our parents to ensure children continue to develop their skills and remain physically active. However, we are keen to ensure our pupils are keeping as active as possible, so we are also launching some additional easily accessible fitness activities, as follows. Parents can help our pupils get involved with from Monday.  Activity Calendar The first one is an 'Activity Calendar' with daily links to physical challenges all our pupils can have a go at whilst at home. It also includes a link to the Youth Sport Trusts Tuesday and Thursday after school club activities. Here is the January calendar. London Youth Games Virtual Fitness Challenge The second is an opportunity for our Year 2 - 6 pupils to take part in the London Youth Games Virtual Fitness Challenge. The challenges this term will be based around fitness and personal bests and may be done at home or at school (for those attending) in class or at breaks, to keep all of our young people active with minimal equipment required.  The challenges are all about participation and will be an opportunity for our pupils to represent the school and Hillingdon Borough and earn valuable points for the Hillingdon team in the London Youth Games competition! The first Fitness Challenge will go live on the LYG website on Monday 18th January and will be posted in the Year 2 - Year 6 PE Google classrooms. The children will have until Thursday evening each week to complete the challenge and add their results to the shared spreadsheet in their PE Google Classroom. These results will then be submitted to London Youth Games and the weekly leader board will be announced in our Monday assemblies.  We hope lots of our pupils will have a go at the virtual fitness challenge and try to get St. Helen's College and Hillingdon to the top of the leader board each week! We Like to Move it Finally, our Year 6 Sports Captains and PE staff put together a fun workout video at the end of last term for us all to get up and move to in January. Have lots of fun joining in with them - see if you can get the whole family up moving and share your videos with us!  Click here for the video. Blue Peter On YouTube CBBC have launched Blue Peter on YouTube and we are sure that pupils and parents will be interested in this, for entertainment outside of home-schooling hours now we’re in lockdown. Blue Peter is the longest running children's TV show in the world and the videos are suitable for 5-11 year olds. There are world record breaking challenges, arts and crafts, environmental videos, cooking and baking how tos, inspirational films, gaming, celebrity appearances, dance routines and music performances. The channel also features ways of getting a Blue Peter badge, behind the scenes footage and extra content about the presenters Adam, Lindsey, Mwaksy, Richie and Henry the Blue Peter dog. If you are interested, please subscribe to https://www.youtube.com/bluepeter (it’s completely free to subscribe!) and also don’t forget to watch the live programme on CBBC at 5.00 p.m. every week, or on BBC iPlayer. E-Scooters We have recently received an email from Hillingdon Council's School Travel and Road Safety team, regarding the increased use of E-Scooters across the borough. The council have received numerous reports of E-Scooters being ridden across the borough on public roads, in parks and even through town centres.  Please read the E-Scooter guidance document which has been created to inform parents and residents about the use of E-Scooters. We encourage parents to have a look at this document as there are road safety and legal implications associated with the unlawful use of E-Scooters within the borough. ABRSM Results Many of our children took ABRSM examinations on their instruments last term, although some were inevitably delayed due to Covid. This list of results is therefore not yet complete, but we did not want to delay any further in sharing with you the results that we have received so far, in order to celebrate these achievements. Very, very well done to all of the children who have been practising so hard to work towards exams, and to those who have already sat their exams and achieved such great results! To those who have exams coming up next week, we wish you the best of luck. 3B       Emily S Violin Grade 1 Pass Raiden B Guitar Grade 1 Merit Viren C Piano Grade 1 Pass         3M       Grace O'H Cello Grade 1 Awaiting result Verity S Violin Grade 1 Awaiting result Kal-el M Piano Grade 1 Awaiting result Avantika G Piano Grade 2 Awaiting result Aaran B Piano Grade 1 Awaiting result         4L       Arshia S Piano Grade 1 Merit Arshvir S Piano Grade 1 Awaiting result Minaya W Piano Grade 1 Merit Minaya W Singing Grade 1 Distinction         4T       Advik S Singing Grade 2 Merit Advik S Guitar Grade 1 Pass Xavier B Guitar Grade 1 Pass 5A       Nirvaan D Piano Grade 1 Distinction Amber P Violin Grade 2 Pass Siyana M Piano Grade 1 Distinction Siyana M Singing Grade 3 Merit Sahib N Piano Grade 1 Pass Luka K Guitar Grade 1 Pass Nya P Flute Grade 2 Distinction Anokhi B Piano Grade 1 Distinction Zach F Oboe Grade 2 Distinction Layla O Piano Grade 2 Awaiting result Leo J Piano Grade 1 Merit Aryan  Piano Grade 1 Awaiting result         5G       Kiran A Singing Grade 2 Pass   Piano Grade 1 Pass Adam O Piano Grade 1 Merit Shruthi T Sining Grade 4 Merit Diyan C Cello Grade 1 Awaiting result Devan S Piano Grade 1 Merit         6R       Arjan D  Piano Grade 2 Pass Frederika T Piano Grade 1 Distinction Esha C Singing Grade 4 Awaiting result         6M       Riya C Singing Grade 2 Pass Manisher L Piano Grade 2 Pass Vidhit N Piano Grade 2 Pass
Posted on: 8/01/2021

Weekly News - Friday 8th January 2021

Cressida Cowell Art Competition Runner Up! Huge congratulations to Alexander A (2H) who was named a runner up in Cressida Cowell’s #CreateWithCress winter holiday card competition. Alexander created a superbly creative card and received a hand written note from Cressida Cowell commending him on his imagination and skill! Well done, Alexander.             Year 2 Seahorses Year 2 produced some really excellent art work this week. Inspired by Eric Carle's 'Mister Seahorse' book, they got creative with colour and design. Their finished pieces are really beautiful. You can see them on our Galleries page here. The Boy, The Mole, The Fox and The Horse Competition In Upper School assemblies this week, Mrs. Drummond has been reading The Boy, The Mole, The Fox and The Horse to the children. This beautiful book is filled with original illustrations and inspiring quotes and the four characters strike up friendships and begin to make sense of their world together. If you do not already own it, we recommend purchasing a copy as it is wonderful for adults and children alike to return to again and again. We would like the children, and any interested parents, to create an illustration with an accompanying quote, inspired by the illustrations and quotes in The Boy, The Mole, The Fox and The Horse. Quotes should be centred on at least one of the St. Helen's College values: Caring Helpfulness Co-operation Courage Kindness Perseverance Fairness Friendliness Patience Respect Courtesy Forgiveness Determination Self Discipline Gratitude Honesty Love Harmony Growth We hope that you will have lots of fun getting creative over the next two weeks and there will be prizes for winning entries in Year 2/3 and Year 4/5/6. There may even be a prize for a winning parent entry! Words From The Library Mrs. Smith and Mrs. Emanuel, our Upper School Librarians, are very sorry not to be having their usual interaction with the children while the library remains closed in lockdown. They would like us to remind the children that 'reading gives us somewhere to go when we have to stay put'. And they would also like parents to remind children of these words from the ever positive and very wise Dr. Seuss: The more that you read The more things you will know The more that you learn The more places you'll go!   Do please keep encouraging your children to look at books often and, if old enough, to read to you every day as well as to themselves. Do carve out time to read to them too, no matter how old they are. Reading for pleasure is one of life's great joys! Uniform - Summer Boater Hats The girls' boater hat is currently being temporarily discontinued as the manufacturer has decided to close their business due to the pandemic. Pullen's do have limited numbers of the boater hats in stock for the summer term, but (depending on parental demand) may run short for 2021, particularly as parents may not have bought a boater in 2020 due to the lockdown. Pullen's are working on re-sourcing, but they do not believe that they will be able to obtain stock for 2021 as the source is in Sri Lanka and the raw materials from China. Therefore, girls will not be required to wear a boater hat this summer term if they do not have one. We expect that Pullen's will be able to organise an alternative supplier for the 2021-2022 academic year.
Posted on: 11/12/2020

Weekly News - Friday 11th December 2020

Christmas, Christmas, Christmas! We had so much fun at school yesterday, all dressed in our Christmas jumpers and enjoying a party day at Ducklings/Lower School and a panto day at Upper School! As ever, the Christmas lunch was delicious and lots of fun too.         Elf On The Shelf The naughty Christmas elves have made their appearance at St. Helen's College once again this year, keeping the children throughout the school entertained, curious and very observant! Thank you to Mr. Smith and Mr. Rizzo for keeping a close eye on them to make sure that they were not too mischievous! You can see photos on our Galleries page here. Christmas Tree Decoration Competition Well done to every child who designed and made a tree decoration. The trees have looked so fabulous with the home made decorations so proudly displayed. The winners were: Ducklings - Hadi Q Wrens - Raya R Robins - Ajit J Kingfishers - Emily K Owls - Libby Y 1R - Shayla R 1C - Zayd A 2B - Aaryan K 2H - Veer K 3B - Sarab D 3M - Hana H 4L - Annabelle S 4T - Milo M 5A - Leo J and Aanya B 5G - Kiran A 6M - Pavitar D 6R - Jena J Christmas Present Appeal Many thanks indeed to all of the parents and children who gave so generously and donated a toy or game for the Hillingdon Salvation Army's Christmas Present Appeal. We were delighted to be able to send so many toys and games across to the Salvation Army and we know that they will bring joy to many families this Christmas.     Community Christmas Message Our Year 3 children recorded a Christmas message to share with the residents of three local care homes: Sweetcroft, Ryefield and Woodlands. We have also sent it to the Salvation Army, the Methodist Church and All Saints Church to spread St. Helen's College Christmas wishes throughout the local community. We thought that you would enjoy seeing this too and we are sure that it has brought lots of joy to the residents of the care homes and members of our local community. You can watch the video here. Staff Christmas Fun Video The staff at St. Helen's College would like to wish everyone a very happy Christmas. You can see us getting into the Christmas mood and sending wishes to you all in these fun videos:  Lower School Upper School ABRSM Music Examination Results We have received the first of this term's (remote) ABRSM examination results and we are delighted for the children who have all achieved so highly as usual! We are awaiting the final sets of results and will publish the complete list at the start of next term. Congratulations to all those who have worked so hard to prepare for their exams and who have been well rewarded. General Knowledge Next term the children in Years 3 - 6 will be competing in their class groups and will be tested on general knowledge questions which will then lead to the top performers being selected to represent the school in the annual Prep School Quiz Club competition. Over the Christmas holidays it might be a fun activity for the family to engage in games such as Junior Trivial Pursuit and other general knowledge games to increase your children's knowledge of the world around them. You might like also to encourage them to watch age-appropriate news programmes such as CBBC Newsround and to read an age-appropriate newspaper such as First News or The Week Junior. Sports Personality Of The Term Many congratulations to Ollie T, who has been named the Sports Personality of the Term. Reading out the citation for the award, our Sports Captains noted that Ollie is a real all-rounder, who thoroughly enjoys playing a variety of sports and always demonstrates good technical skill and tactical awareness, regardless of the activity. They said that Ollie enjoys working with his peers in PE and games lessons and positively influences, motivates and encourages others to perform to the best of their ability, particularly in inter house matches. Well done, Ollie! Musician Of The Term We are delighted to announce that Manisher L has been named the Musician of the Term. Manisher has shown outstanding effort, commitment, dedication and achievement within the music department. She has always worked conscientiously and demonstrated enormous enthusiasm over several years in all aspects of music at St. Helen’s College. Manisher has excellent music skills and applies and shares creative ideas successfully in class work. She is a member of the Chamber Choir and, as a music prefect, is an excellent role model within the music department. Manisher regularly performs at assemblies and recitals both inside and outside of school. As well as playing the ukulele, she plays the piano and the harmonica. She has exceptional musical talent and has recently taken Grade 6 keyboard, Grade 2 piano and Grade 3 harmonica. Well done, Manisher! Inter House Sports Competition Children in Year 3 - 6 took part in the Inter House Sports Competition again this week in their games lessons. At the end of the first half term, Windsor led the year long competition so there was friendly rivalry between the houses for the honours this half term. Games and competitions were set up in netball, football, hockey and tag rugby sessions for the children and they all thoroughly enjoyed the opportunity to play for their houses.  Results were as follows. 3M Hockey - Winners were Windsor 3B Netball -  Winners were Windsor  4L Football - It was a draw 4T Tag Rugby - Winners were Cambria 5A Hockey - Winners were Cambria 5G Tag Rugby - Winners were Windsor 6M Football - Winners were Windsor 6R Netball - Winners were Windsor These results, combined with the first half term's results, mean that Windsor have won the Autumn Term Inter House Competition. Many congratulations to everyone in Windsor!  PA Christmas Gifts The PA have generously bought a gift for every child in the school for Christmas: a traditional game of Mikado (pick up sticks). These have been sent home with children today. Parents of our youngest children might wish to hold onto the gift for them until they are a little older. The PA have also sent this written message and a video message too. PA Christmas Message: This year we haven’t been able to hold a Christmas party for the children but instead have given them a gift each that we hope they will enjoy and will be a keepsake to remember their time at St. Helen's College. We would like to wish you and your families and very happy and safe Christmas. PA Video Message Staff Farewell Today we bid farewell to Miss Eaver, who has been at Lower School for the past 5 years. We wish Miss Eaver well as she finally joins her family who have relocated to Dorset and we know that she will be a super addition to her new school. Thank you, Miss Eaver, for all that you have done for the children - the staff will also miss your Disney and Star Wars dress up days!     Looking Ahead - Spring Term The spring term lunch menu has now been published to the School Documents page of the website and is available here.  Thank you to all parents in Year 3 to Year 6 who have made your spring term co-curricular club selections. The club allocations have now been published to parents and we ask you to make your payments promptly to confirm your child's place at their club. Bookings are also now open for the spring term Breakfast Club and After School Club. As ever, we encourage you to book in advance if you do know that you will need these clubs on particular days, as forward bookings always help us with planning staffing and catering. Breakfast Club bookings for Lower School must be made by the Friday before the week you need, since we will need to arrange staffing for this in advance. Lower School Funtasia bookings close at 2 p.m. each day, and Upper School Funtasia bookings close at 3 p.m. each day. You may book the sessions you require by logging in to your SchoolsBuddy account. Drop off/collection arrangements and class bubble group arrangements will remain the same for the spring term as they have been this term. We will, of course, keep a close eye on government guidance related to COVID-19 and will review arrangements if it proves necessary to do so. We would like the children in Reception to Year 6 to begin wearing their felt caps and boaters again whenever they are wearing full school uniform from the start of the spring term. St. Helen's College woollen hats may be brought to school to be worn in the playground during play times and may be worn with PE/Games kits. Please do also take the opportunity over the Christmas break to double check that uniform is in a good state of repair and that your child has all the necessary equipment as outlined on the Uniform & Equipment List, which is available here.
Posted on: 4/12/2020

Weekly News - Friday 4th December

11+ Results We are delighted to announce that our Year 6 pupils have excelled themselves, with a very high number having passed the Buckinghamshire and/or the Berkshire 11+ examinations. Many of the Year 6 children are now working towards Independent School entrance examinations and interviews. We are very proud of all their achievements so far.  Eco Schools Green Flag Award We were thrilled to hear today that St. Helen's College has been awarded the Green Flag Award by Eco Schools. This award recognises the school's eco-friendly nature and systematic, sustained commitment to working in an eco-friendly way and to educating children about how and why we must care for our environment. The Eco-Schools Team were particularly keen to thank St. Helen's College for continuing to work on the Eco-Schools Green Flag during such a demanding year, noting that this is a true reflection of our school's determination to make a real difference. A big thank you to all of the staff and children, particularly the Eco Reps. 2B Assembly The children of 2B presented an extremely creative and resourceful nativity 'premiere'  this morning which was much enjoyed by pupils, parents and staff alike! The 2020 retelling of the traditional story, based in and around St. Helen's College Upper School, included some wonderful acting and singing too. We are sure that the children will never forget their 2020 Christmas class assembly! Very well done to all of the children and staff involved. Year 1 'Zoom' Into Antarctica! Today Year 1 ‘Zoomed’ into Antarctica! Caitlin’s Uncle Pat is currently working at Scott Base in Antarctica and Year 1 were able to talk to him via video link and see where he works. It was incredible! Uncle Pat explained that at the moment the sun never goes down in Antarctica, so there are 24 hours of daylight each day. He showed Year 1 some incredible animals and explained that he gets to see them every day. The children saw what he has to wear to keep warm and were very interested in what he has to eat - who knew that there were chefs in Antarctica! They were also very interested to know what Uncle Pat studied at school and how he got the opportunity to work in such an incredible place. He said that he worked very hard at school and that he particularly enjoyed maths and science. This was a perfect end to Year 1's science topic all about animals, including humans. The children have certainly deepened their knowledge about Antarctica and they feel inspired to do something to help the environment. They are now planning to raise some money for the World Wildlife Fund and adopt their very own Year 1 penguin. Please remember that you can do your bit too by turning off lights and keeping doors closed whenever possible. Many thanks indeed, Uncle Pat! Carols Around The Tree Our Upper School children enjoyed singing carols in their class bubble groups around the tree in the playground today. Mr. and Mrs. Crehan joined us for the event which, although different to usual, was no less festive and enjoyable! The school is looking so festive with decorations and lights everywhere. A big thank you to Mr. Smith, Mr. Rizzo and Mr. Neil for all their hard work. We are all looking forward to a very Christmassy final week of term. Year 3 Roman Day Our Year 3 children enjoyed a super Roman-themed day on Thursday, to bring their History topic to life. They dressed as Romans, investigated Roman life, made mosaics and Roman numeral clocks and even tasted Roman food! They also took part in road building activities. You can see photographs of the day on our Galleries page here.  Year 5 Study Water Pollution The children in Year 5 have been investigating water pollution and its impact on the environment through the use of case studies. Miss Walker has been delighted with the work produced by all of the children as they researched the BP Deepwater Horizon. Using a variety of sources, they created timelines and event mindmaps, which they then used to write some fantastic newspaper reports. A selection of the children's reports can be found on our Galleries page here.  Art Throughout The School Mrs. Pruce, our new Head of Art, reports that she has had an amazing first art filled term at St. Helen's College. The talent is high and as families are unable to come in to see all the lovely work, she has made a short video to share with you, showcasing wonderful artistic creations across the school. A truly busy, fun filled term! We hope you will enjoy exploring the children's work here. Christmas Reminders Monday 7th December - Christmas Present Appeal St. Helen's College children develop core values and an appreciation of how fortunate they are in their own lives and of how important it is to support those of others who are less fortunate. This year, following a suggestion from a parent, we are encouraging our pupils to support the Hillingdon Salvation Army's Christmas Present Appeal. We are inviting parents and children to choose a brand new toy/game, up to a maximum value of £12 and which will fit into a plastic shopping bag. These gifts should be delivered, unwrapped, to school on Monday 7th December. We will quarantine the gifts and then pass them onto the Salvation Army, who will arrange for their safe distribution to families in need over the festive period. Thank you so much in advance for your kindness and generosity. Christmas Tree Decoration Competition Don't forget to encourage your child to enter the Christmas Tree Decoration Competition. Children are invited to design their own decoration to be hung on our Christmas trees at Ducklings, Lower School and Upper School. Decorations should be of a sensible size but may take whatever format the pupils choose! There will be a small gift for every child who enters and a winner will be chosen from each class to receive a prize too. The last day for bringing in a completed decoration is Wednesday 9th December. Decorations should be clearly named and handed to form teachers on arrival at school. Judging will take place on Thursday 10th December and prizes will be awarded on the final day of term. We look forward very much to seeing the children's entries this year! Thursday 10th December - Panto Day/Christmas Lunch On Thursday 10th December, children from Nursery to Year 6 will be treated to a traditional pantomime, which will be streamed live into their classrooms! They will also enjoy our traditional school Christmas dinner, which is always a very popular and joyous occasion! The adapted menu for the day is available here. Please note that there will be a dairy-free alternative for the dessert option. Children at Upper School are invited to wear a Christmas jumper over their school uniform on this day and children at Lower School may wear their own Christmas party clothes. Friday 11th December - End of Term Term will end on Friday 11th December, which is a half day. Please collect your children at the times shown below: Ducklings and Nursery: 11.40 a.m. Reception: 11.50 a.m. Year 1: 12.00 p.m. Year 2: 12.00 p.m. Year 3: 12.10 p.m. Year 4: 12.20 p.m. Year 5: 12.30 p.m. Year 6: 12.40 p.m. Nativity Trail Some of the churches in Long Lane are organising a nativity trail for children. Many of the usual Christmas activities have had to be changed or even cancelled, and the churches wanted to offer something fun over Christmas.  The idea is that 6-inch knitted nativity figures will be placed in the windows of some of the shops/businesses at Hillingdon Circus, Ryefield Avenue and Sutton Court Road by the middles of next week.  Using a leaflet with the names of the figures, children (with a parent or responsible adult) need to find them and write down where they found them. Once they have found all the figures then they can return the leaflet to North Hillingdon Methodist Church where they will be entered into a prize draw. We have sent home the leaflets with children today and we hope that you will enjoy this activity with your children over the weekend or over the holidays in the run up to Christmas. Spring Term Co-Curricular Activities We will be re-introducing some more co-curricular activities next term, with a limited programme of clubs for Years 3-6, using only internal St. Helen's College staff. Unfortunately we continue to be very limited on the number of staff and locations available for clubs, whilst maintaining our COVID-secure protocols. We thank parents of the younger children for your patience during this gradual re-introduction of clubs. We will continue to monitor the situation and will endeavour to make more clubs available during the summer term, if we are able to do so. For now, parents of children in Years 3-6 should log on to SchoolsBuddy from 3 p.m. today to make their club selections for next term.  
Posted on: 27/11/2020

Weekly News - Friday 27th November 2020

3M Class Assembly Well done to 3M, whose class assembly was presented to parents and the Upper School this morning. We were treated to individual musical performances from Samara and Arjun and the class performed a group song all about Roman numerals as they shared with us all that they have been working on in their various subjects. They have been studying the Romans in history, learning about different types of settlements in Geography, exploring inverse operations in maths and investigating forces in science. In the art studio, they have worked so hard on their skills that the whole class were awarded 'artist of the week'! In English, they have been developing their imaginative and creative writing skills following our online visit from author Cressida Cowell and in RE they have been thinking about choices, including what feels right and what feels wrong. They also shared with us a video excerpt of a music lesson in which they were learning about and practising African drumming. What busy lives they lead here at school!  Very well done to them for their confident and enjoyable presentation of all that they have been engaged in during this half term so far. Chamber Choir We are delighted to share a recording made in a socially distanced 'bubble group' format by the Chamber Choir during this half term. We hope that you enjoy hearing the children sing once more. You can see the video here.  Kindness Last week was national 'Anti-Bullying Week' and in Monday's Upper School assembly Mrs. Drummond shared a video message to the children at St. Helen's College from West End actress Wendi Peters (who has also been our Senior School Speech judge). The children were introduced to a little boy, 'Charlie', who was badly bullied at school by other children who did not accept him for who he was and mocked his love of the theatre, acting, dancing and singing. Wendi and a multitude of West End stars have come together to produce a charity single in support of the anti-bullying campaign from the Diana Award. Do take a look at the single here. Please also see the link here for more information for parents. We are very fortunate at St. Helen's College that our pupils work hard to uphold the school values and the children have been encouraged to share acts of kindness this week and to be good friends to each other. Of course they might not always get it right but that is the journey of childhood: learning about social relationships which, as adults, we can support the children to cultivate.  This festive season might feel a little bit different than normal for many young people. That’s why we’re encouraging you to join The Week Junior’s 12 Days of Kindness challenge – a fun way for children to help spread joy to their family, friends, community – and more importantly themselves – this December. Taking part is easy: simply visit theweekjunior.co.uk/12daysofkindness and download their special, free poster that features 12 ways to show kindness as well as some handy ideas from The Week Junior team to help you complete each day. There is something for every family to enjoy – from making thank you cards and baking Christmas treats, to donating toys and helping wildlife, all in support of Action for Children and their Secret Santa campaign, it’s the perfect feel-good way to end the year. Christmas Carols Around The Tree Our Christmas trees are now up at all three sites. We would like to thank Mr. and Mrs. Lall, who have recently opened a florist in Hillingdon, for their kind donation of a tree for the Lower School Hall. We are looking forward to enjoying our usual Carols Around The Tree with pupils, albeit in a slightly different format to usual! We are very sorry that we cannot invite parents into school to join us this year, but the classes will each spend some time in school singing around the tree and this will no doubt help to get the pupils into a festive mood. Don't forget to encourage your child to enter the Christmas Tree Decoration Competition. Children are invited to design their own decoration to be hung on our Christmas trees at Ducklings, Lower School and Upper School. Decorations should be of a sensible size but may take whatever format the pupils choose! There will be a small gift for every child who enters and a winner will be chosen from each class to receive a prize too. Children may bring their decorations to school from Monday 30th November and the last day for bringing in a completed decoration is Wednesday 9th December. Decorations should be clearly named and handed to form teachers on arrival at school. Judging will take place on Thursday 10th December and prizes will be awarded on the final day of term. We look forward very much to seeing the children's entries this year! Monday 7th December - Christmas Present Appeal St. Helen's College children develop core values and an appreciation of how fortunate they are in their own lives and of how important it is to support those of others who are less fortunate. This year, following a suggestion from a parent, we are encouraging our pupils to support the Hillingdon Salvation Army's Christmas Present Appeal. We are inviting parents and children to choose a brand new toy/game, up to a maximum value of £12 and which will fit into a plastic shopping bag. These gifts should be delivered, unwrapped, to school on Monday 7th December. We will quarantine this gifts and then pass them onto the Salvation Army, who will arrange for their safe distribution to families in need over the festive period. The appeal is being launched in assemblies at school and we do hope that it is something you will feel able to support. Thank you so much in advance for your kindness and generosity. Thursday 10th December - Panto Day/Christmas Lunch On Thursday 10th December, children from Nursery to Year 6 will be treated to a traditional pantomime, which will be streamed live into their classrooms! They will also enjoy our traditional school Christmas dinner, which is always a very popular and joyous occasion! The adapted menu for the day is available here. Please note that there will be a dairy-free alternative for the dessert option. Children are invited to wear a Christmas jumper over their school uniform on this day. Friday 11th December - End of Term Term will end on Friday 11th December, which is a half day. Please collect your children at the times shown below: Ducklings and Nursery: 11.40 a.m. Reception: 11.50 a.m. Year 1: 12.00 p.m. Year 2: 12.00 p.m. Year 3: 12.10 p.m. Year 4: 12.20 p.m. Year 5: 12.30 p.m. Year 6: 12.40 p.m.   Online Safety - An Important Reminder There is no doubt that we have needed the digital world recently and it will continue to be a major part of our children’s lives. However, as parents and teachers we have a duty to be aware of what our children are able to access and how it influences them.  It is never too early to teach your child how to be safe online, so we would like to remind parents to follow these steps to promote online safety with your child: limit and monitor screen time install parental controls only allow age appropriate apps & games set privacy settings listen to what your child knows, or what they think they know, and then review, reflect and respond For more information please log on to National Online Safety where there is a wealth of information to support you.  https://nationalonlinesafety.com/enrol/st-helen-s-college Please do contact our Designated Safeguarding Leads, Mrs. Hunt (Lower School) or Mr. McLaughlin (Upper School) if you have any questions. lhunt@sthelenscollege.com amclaughlin@sthelenscollege.com
Posted on: 20/11/2020

Weekly News - Friday 20th November 2020

A Day In The Life of 2H We were treated to a super pre-recorded class assembly this morning, during which the children of 2H took us through a day in the life of their class. They explained how they must arrive at school, organise themselves and their belongings and make sure they are ready for their busy day of learning. We were introduced to the class School Council, Charity and Eco Reps and were then taken through all the learning that is going on in 2H at present, from 'ecstatic' English lessons with super creative writing to rhythmic music lessons and Power Maths lessons. The children explained how they are learning about the importance of healthy eating in their science lessons, investigating the Great Fire of London in History (Topic) and Drama lessons, painting in Art lessons and enjoying movement and music in PE lessons. Play times and lunch times are clearly extremely enjoyable and 2H have also been discussing some big issues through Philosophy for Children in their PSHCE lessons, asking whether rich people are happier than poor people and whether we would rather be friends with a rich person or a poor person. It was super for us all to see just how busy and purposeful the children's lives are here at school. It may help to explain for parents why the children are usually rather tired and rather hungry by the end of the school day! Mr. McLaughlin has written a very interesting blog this week about how to support your child (and yourself!) after a busy day at school, so please do take a look at that too: you can read it here. Very well done, 2H! Year 6 Morning Tea Our Year 6 pupils were treated to morning tea with Mrs. Drummond and Mr. McLaughlin this week to celebrate the great start they have had to their final year at St. Helen's College. They have coped admirably with preparing for examinations, returning to school after such a long time and taking on leadership roles within the school. Thank you to Soula and her team for the amazing cakes and hot chocolate! You can see more photos on the Galleries page.       Parents' Evenings All classes from Ducklings to Year 6 have now had their Autumn parents' evenings using the new remote platform. We will shortly be sending out a parent survey to gather feedback on how the system worked for you and whether it will be an option for some parents for the future. Music Examinations Many of the children have now received certificates from the recent music examinations which have been taking place. We will publish a full list of achievements at the end of term. Congratulations to all those involved. Christmas Card Competition Winner Thank you to all the pupils who submitted an entry for this competition. The overall winner was Alexander A in 2H and highly commended was Aanya D in 5A. You can see the winning and the highly commended entries here. Alexander's design           Aanya's design         Gurpurab We will be celebrating Gurpurab in Upper School assembly on Monday 30th November. If any pupils will be marking Gurpurab in special ways over the preceding weekend and on the day itself, and would like to share their celebration with the school community, please encourage them to speak with Mrs. Drummond next week. Christmas Bauble Competition As usual, we will be running our Christmas tree decoration competition this year. Children are invited to design their own decoration to be hung on our Christmas trees at Ducklings, Lower School and Upper School. Decorations should be of a sensible size but may take whatever format the pupils choose! There will be a small gift for every child who enters and a winner will be chosen from each class to receive a prize too. Children may bring their decorations to school by Monday 30th November and the last day for bringing in a completed decoration is Wednesday 9th December. Decorations should be handed to form teachers on arrival at school. Judging will take place on Thursday 10th December and prizes will be awarded on the final day of term. We look forward very much to seeing the children's entries this year! Flu Vaccinations Parents are reminded that the cut-off date for forms to be returned for the flu vaccination is Monday 23rd November. Once the figures have been passed to the nurse team it will not be possible to add children to the vaccination programme in school, so please double check and ensure that you have returned your forms by Monday. Christmas Gift Ideas Big Life Journal  https://biglifejournal-uk.co.uk/ A wonderful book for children 6-11, this book would make a superb gift for the whole family. The book focuses on many of our school core values of respect, courage and gratitude. There is also a 'teen' version of the book for those of you with older children.
Posted on: 13/11/2020

Weekly News - Friday 13th November 2020

The highlight of this week for our pupils in Year 1 to Year 6 was undoubtedly our online author visit from Cressida Cowell, the author of the amazing 'How To Train Your Dragon' series and of a new book series entitled 'The Wizard of Once'. Cressida is also currently the Children's Laureate. From her home, Cressida spoke to the children about the inspiration behind her books, the importance of research, how to write creatively by using ideas born in the real world and much more. Her enthusiasm, expertise and friendliness made her an absolute inspiration for the children and we are so grateful to her for sharing her time and her boundless energy with us. It was clear from the children's questions to Cressida how engaged they were in the event and Cressida answered their questions with real understanding and empathy. Many children have ordered signed copies of Cressida's books and we hope that they will enjoy reading them. Ordering is still open - signed books can be ordered using the following link: https://chilternbookshops.co.uk/product-category/cressidacowell-sthelenscollege/ Please ignore all shipping options as you go through the checkout process. Just note down your child's name and class in the 'order notes' box to ensure they receive it promptly. Cressida also suggested that the children might like to start their own special scrapbooks for ideas, drawings and creative writing and we hope that parents will support children in buying scrapbooks and reminding them to record their ideas. Children in Need The school was a riot of colour and spots today as staff and pupils joined together to dress in fluorescent colours and wear spots/stripes to show support for Children in Need. Thank you to all who have so far donated to the St. Helen's College fundraiser for this most worthy of causes; the current total stands at £1057. The donation link will remain active until Sunday, so if you have not yet made a donation and would like to do so, please follow this link:  https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/sthelenscollege-BBCChildrenInNeed2020utm_campaign=lc_frp_share_transaction_fundraiser_page_launched&utm_content=bac5394f-7efe-42ce-9956a54faf62bc03&utm_medium=email&utm_source=postoffice&utm_term=1599656370830 You can see more photographs of our Children in Need day on our Galleries page. Assembly/ Music Recital The children at Upper School were treated to an array of performers who sang, played piano pieces and performed on the clarinet and saxophone in our first remote mini-recital during our Friday commendations assembly.  Well done to Arshia (4L), Anjika (5G), Georgia (6R), Jessica (6R), Riya (6M) and Vidhit (6M).  Remembrance On Wednesday (11th November), our school community joined together to pay tribute to those members of our armed services who have given their lives in the line of duty, and all those who still serve today. Our morning assembly focussed solely on Remembrance, the Royal British Legion Poppy Appeal and the role of our armed forces, and at 11 a.m. pupils came together for a two minute silence. At Upper School, Mrs. Fawbert performed The Last Post for us as we lined up in our bubble groups in the playground. It was a meaningful occasion indeed.  Many thanks to all parents, pupils and staff who have donated to our Fundraising page for the Poppy Appeal. The school community has raised a total of £208 so far. The page will remain open until Sunday 15th November so if you would like to make a donation there is still time to do so. The donation link is here: https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/sthelenscollege-TheRoyalBritishLegion?utm_campaign=lc_frp_share_transaction_fundraiser_page_launched&utm_content=8aa41a46-0298-4a41-88b9-88c3288b2c7c&utm_medium=email&utm_source=postoffice&utm_term=1599656771013 Happy Diwali! We would like to wish everybody a happy Diwali and we hope that all families celebrating manage to find a way to connect with friends and relatives this weekend.  If you have any photos, videos or stories that you would like to share from this year's very different Diwali celebrations, please share these with Mrs. Drummond to be shown or discussed in assembly on Wednesday morning (18th November).  Co-Curriculum: Virtual After School Club and December Science Camp Youth Sport Trust After School Club The Youth Sport Trust have taken the step to deliver a free virtual after school club as part of a national response to the second lockdown. The 30 minute club will take place at 5 p.m. each weekday and will be led by a different member of the YST’s athlete mentor network, starting on Thursday 12 November with world no.1 female inline skater and 10-time British Champion Jenna Downing.  Aimed mainly at primary-aged children, a different theme has been assigned for each day of the club: Adventure Monday, Tuesday Play, Wild Wednesday, Thinking Thursday and Fun Friday.  Here is the link to the information for parents - we hope that many of your children will want to take part. Mother Nature Holiday Activities Early Bird booking is now available for the Mother Nature December Christmas Science Activity Holiday Camp - Santa’s Workshop! (14th -18th Dec 2020). To book Science Activity Camps for your child click here. Use special Parent Discount Code ‘coolschool’ for an extra £10-off list price for full-week places and £5-off day places. Switch Off Fortnight Next week will see St. Helen's College, led by the Eco Team, take part in Switch-Off Fortnight. Switch off Fortnight is a campaign that will encourage everyone at school to become interested in saving energy and cutting their carbon footprint. We would also like to encourage everyone to take the switch-off challenge home, where we hope to inspire our families to take part in saving energy too. The more people involved, the greater the energy savings will be, which in turn will help our environment. The Eco Team will kick start Switch Off Fortnight during Monday's assembly and it will last from Monday 16th November until Friday 27th November. Throughout the fortnight, the Eco Team will carry out several audits to see how many lights and appliances have been left on in their classrooms. The team will also be running an awareness campaign by designing posters which will be displayed in their classrooms, encouraging everyone to save energy. At the end of the second week, the team will monitor the results they have collected and will look to see if the campaign has been successful in persuading people to use electricity more carefully. Certificates will be awarded to the classes that perform the best. One small click can make a big difference, so happy energy saving everyone!  Heath Robinson Museum Competition Although the Heath Robinson Museum (Pinner) are in lockdown and their doors are temporarily shut, they still want to spread some creativity and fun! They are inviting children aged 6-16 to take part in the #kidsinmuseums #digitaltakeoverday on Friday 20th November by submitting photographs of artwork to an online art competition. The events of this year have really highlighted the importance of our home and our loved ones. Heath Robinson often got his inspiration from his family, his home and the town he lived in, so the museum wants children to use the theme of 'home' to get creative. They may use any material and make their artwork big or small and as literal or metaphorical as they like! If your child would like to enter, they must submit a photograph of their artwork to their class teacher by Tuesday 17th November. This will allow Mrs. Pruce time to submit the school's entries by the museum deadline. The runners up entries will be published on the Heath Robinson Museum website in the news section and there will be a prize for the winning entry. COVID and Car Sharing Please see the link here for updated guidance for parents from the Department of Education.  This update provides information on the national restrictions that came into force on 5th November, the latest advice for clinically extremely vulnerable children and young people and advice on the use of face coverings in education settings. The school has advocated car sharing for many years in an effort to reduce congestion and pollution in the local area. During the current COVID-19 restrictions, we urge parents who are car sharing to ensure that all drivers and passengers wear masks or visors, and to travel with windows open where possible for ventilation, to mitigate against the risks of transmitting the virus. Parents should also inform school formally now of car sharing arrangements, please, so that we have a record of potential contacts. This will enable us to triage quickly and effectively in the case of a positive case of COVID coming to light in the pupil community. Please see the government guidance for safer guidance for passengers here. Holiday Club Once again, we have had to take the decision not to offer Holiday Club over the Christmas holidays. We are so disappointed not to be able to offer our full wraparound care provision as we would in normal times, but we are sure that parents appreciate that the current in-school bubble group restrictions make staffing Holiday Club unsustainable.  Pupil to Pupil Christmas Cards As usual, we will run a pupil postbox system for Christmas cards this year, so that pupils may post cards to their friends. However, please note that pupils may only send cards through this school system to friends in their own class bubble group. They must not send cards to children in other classes as these cannot be delivered. Christmas Gift Ideas If you have a budding artist in the household, or would like to inspire your child(ren)'s artistic interest, Mrs. Pruce recommends these items as Christmas gifts or stocking fillers. The links shown are to Amazon but you should be able to find these paints/brushes at most retailers which sell art supplies - particularly during these times, it would be good to support local businesses where possible. Major Brushes Artist Watercolour Paint Tin - 36 Blocks Red Metal Lid £5.95 Winsor & Newton Foundation Water Colour Short Handle 6 Pack Brush, Multicoloured, 7 x 1 x 4.3 cm £6.95 EasyFundraising If you are embarking on Christmas shopping, we would like to remind you that you can raise money for the St. Helen's College Development Fund, at absolutely no cost to yourself, whenever you shop online at a huge number of retailers, by signing up to our EasyFundraising cause. Retailers include Amazon, Ebay, John Lewis, Marks & Spencer, Asos, Argos, Selfridges, Harrods, House of Fraser, Booking.com, Just Eat and many, many more. We launched our EasyFundraising cause last year and it is proving successful so far, but we have only a few supporters. We would really love to increase the number of supporters so that we can establish a meaningful fund, with the eventual aim to use this fund both for development projects at St. Helen's College and to support educational development projects in developing countries. The power of schemes like this one is in the number of people who use the scheme, and in making it a habit to use it for every purchase - each individual donation may seem small, but every penny counts. Until 17th November, the fund will receive a free £5 donation for every new member who signs up to support our EasyFundraising cause and makes a qualifying purchase, if you do so using this link: https://www.easyfundraising.org.uk/causes/sthelencoldevfund/?utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=refmailshare The easiest way to make this fundraising a regular part of your shopping is to download the EasyFundraising app onto your phone or tablet and open this every time you want to shop online, following the links to your retailer of choice. If you shop using a desktop computer, you can add the Easyfundraising extension onto your desktop computer browser and you will then receive an automatic reminder every time you shop. If you would like to support the cause but are not sure how, please do contact Mrs. Smith who will be pleased to help. Thank you very much indeed for your support. 
Posted on: 6/11/2020

Weekly News - Friday 6th November 2020

We are delighted that we able to remain open throughout the lockdown and thank you all for your continued support in making sure that we follow all the school protocols to keep the children, parents and staff all safe. The children have returned to school after the half term holiday full of enthusiasm and we look forward to the forthcoming half term with lots of exciting activities planned in the build up to Christmas. Early Years Online Open Morning and Video This morning we held a very successful online Early Years Open Morning for prospective parents, at which we were able to broadcast, for the first time, our brand new Early Years video. We are sure that you will enjoy watching this too - you can see it here.  Cressida Cowell Author Visit Next Thursday morning, November 12th, St. Helen's College welcomes Cressida Cowell MBE, Children's Laureate and award-winning author, for a special online event with the children in Years 1-6. The children were very excited when they heard about her visit in assembly! Cressida is the author of the hugely popular 'How to Train Your Dragon' series which has sold more than 7 million copies worldwide and has since been made into a blockbuster series of animated films. She will be talking about her latest critically acclaimed series, 'The Wizards of Once.'  Signed books can be ordered using the following link: https://chilternbookshops.co.uk/product-category/cressidacowell-sthelenscollege/ Please ignore all shipping options as you go through the checkout process. Just note down your child's name and class in the 'order notes' box to ensure they receive it promptly. We look forward to an inspiring talk from one of the nation's most prominent children's authors. Full details have been sent out to parents by email and are also available here.  Be Bright, Be Seen Road Safety Competition Congratulations to the overall winners of the Be Bright, Be Seen competition, run by our Junior Road Safety Officers. They are: Year 2-3 winner: Grace O'H                   Year 4/5/6 winner: Abdullah S                 Congratulations to all of the other children who entered, who will all also receive a small prize for their entries.           Christmas Card Designs PA Christmas Card Scheme The PA are running a Christmas card scheme this year, which will give parents the opportunity to purchase packs of Christmas cards, and other products, featuring a design by your child! Order forms and instructions have been sent home with your child. The younger children will have had the opportunity to produce a complete design in school and older classes may have started their design in art lessons at school, but should complete their designs at home over the weekend. ALL ORDERS MUST BE RETURNED TO SCHOOL (AND ALL PAYMENTS MADE BY BACS) BY MONDAY 9TH NOVEMBER in order for the cards to be delivered before the end of term, so please check your book bags carefully and return the order form promptly! Every order raises money for the PA too, so we hope you will be generous when placing your orders. Thank you very much for your support. St. Helen's College Christmas Card Competition We are also inviting children to design a festive St. Helen's College card and the winner will be printed professionally and sent out to our alumni and to colleagues at other schools in our community. The closing date for entries is next Friday, 13th November. Full details have been posted to Google Classrooms so please do encourage your child to take part. We look forward to seeing the children's festive designs! Pupil to Pupil Christmas Cards As usual, we will run a pupil postbox system for Christmas cards this year, so that pupils may post cards to their friends. However, please note that pupils may only send cards through this school system to friends in their own class bubble group. They must not send cards to children in other classes as these cannot be delivered. Children in Need - Friday 13th November On Friday 13th November, when we will be supporting Children in Need, children may come to school in their own clothes. The theme is Fluorescent and Reflective, so the children may like to wear something fluorescent, or perhaps to add funky fluorescent and reflective spots and stripes to their outfits. This theme will link with our Road Safety initiative: Be Safe, Be Seen. Families are asked to make their donations (suggested £2 minimum donation, but all donations gratefully accepted) online via this link: https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/sthelenscollege-BBCChildrenInNeed2020?utm_campaign=lc_frp_share_transaction_fundraiser_page_launched&utm_content=bac5394f-7efe-42ce-9956-a54faf62bc03&utm_medium=email&utm_source=postoffice&utm_term=1599656370830 The Royal British Legion Poppy Appeal We will be marking Remembrance Day on Wednesday 11th November as usual, with assemblies discussing the significance of the day and a two minute silence at school at 11.00 a.m. to enable us to remember those who have given their lives to secure our freedom, and those who continue to serve in the British armed forces. This year poppies will NOT be on sale at school, but you can still bring your own poppies from home. We hope that parents and pupils will also wish to make a donation to this cause - even a really small amount is appreciated. You can donate by following this link: https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/sthelenscollege-TheRoyalBritishLegion?utm_campaign=lc_frp_share_transaction_fundraiser_page_launched&utm_content=8aa41a46-0298-4a41-88b9-88c3288b2c7c&utm_medium=email&utm_source=postoffice&utm_term=1599656771013 PA Forum Meeting and Class Rep Vacancy The next PA Forum meeting will take place on Tuesday 17th November at 7.00 p.m. and will be held remotely using Google Meet. If you have any points that you would like to raise for discussion, please do share these with your class rep as soon as possible. Class representatives should send any points for discussion to Mrs. Smith by Friday 13th November at the latest please, at susmith@sthelenscollege.com. The PA have a vacancy for a class rep for Kingfishers class. If any parent in Kingfishers would like to become the class rep, please contact the PA at pa@sthelenscollege.com. Flu Vaccinations - Reminder Flu vaccinations are being offered at school on Wednesday 2nd December to all children in Reception to Year 6. Parents of children in these classes are reminded to return their flu vaccination forms as soon as possible. These forms should still be completed even if you do not wish for your child(ren) to have the immunisation. If you do not wish for your child(ren) to be immunised, please complete the 'Do not consent' section. Christmas Gift Ideas If you are looking for some interesting family games for Christmas please take a look at the following sites: Cracker Games: https://www.thedarkimp.com/product/cracker-games/ (This site includes some super logical thinking family and individual board games) Logical thinking games - always a favourite: https://www.happypuzzle.co.uk/ For pupils under 8, a super range of board games: https://www.orchardtoys.com/ For families who wish to do some mindfulness activities with their children at home: https://mindfulmonsters.co.uk/About
Posted on: 16/10/2020

Weekly News - Friday 16th October 2020

Romans Everywhere! Well done to Class 3B, who presented a very interesting, informative and well-rehearsed assembly today all about Romans. Through a well-delivered script and performance, they taught us about Roman history: the life of a Roman soldier, the invasion of Britain and battles between Romans and Celts. We heard the stories of Caratacus, whose bravery was recognised by both Celts and Romans, and of Boudicca, including an explanation of why she is also known as Boadicea and why we shouldn't always trust what is written in the history books. There was plenty of humour, too - we learnt that Hadrian's Wall is not at the end of Hadrian's garden and that the saying 'Rome wasn't built in a day' doesn't mean that Rome was built at night time! 3B also presented a fantastic song about the Romans and led us in our assembly prayer. Very well done, 3B! You can watch the video of their assembly here. Music: Year 4's Body Percussion Sequences Year 4 have been working very creatively in their music lessons this week. They have taken inspiration from sounds found in their own names to compose a body percussion sequence. You can see the videos here: 4L and 4T.  Water Pipe Challenge Our Year 5 pupils got some hands on engineering experience in their geography lessons last week when they took part in the Water Pipe Challenge. The challenge was to use what they had learnt about water infrastructure in lessons to construct a pipe system to transport one litre of water over a distance of three metres. It was a wonderful opportunity for some outdoor learning and collaboration in teams to come up with designs which were successful and had no leaks!  This week Year 5 took part in more outdoor learning, with a 'water walk' during which they surveyed the Upper School site to investigate how water is used on site and where water might be used more efficiently. They even read the school water meter!          Junior Road Safety Officers Our Year 6 Junior Road Safety Officers presented a wonderful assembly on Wednesday,  entitled 'Be Bright Be Seen'. Their message was all about being safe pedestrians when the clocks change at the end of October and the darker mornings and evenings arrive. They shared a lovely story about how celebrations at this time of year such as Halloween, Diwali and Bonfire Night are a great time to be with friends and how we can be seen in the dark at these celebrations. Please see copies of the presentation and story in these links.  The JRSOs also told the children in Years 2-6 about a half term 'Be Bright Be Seen' competition in which they are invited to take part. The challenge is to design their own fluorescent or reflective piece of clothing or a fluorescent or reflective school bag. The closing date for entries is Tuesday 3rd November. Information about the competition can be seen here. We hope lots of the children at Upper School will take part and we will have a wonderful display of designer outfits when we come back to school after half term.  Inter House Sports Competition Children in Years 3 - 6 took part in the inter house sports competition this week in their games lessons. Games and competitions were set up in netball, football, hockey and tag rugby sessions for the children and they all thoroughly enjoyed the opportunity to play for their houses.  Results were as follows. 4L Hockey - winners were Windsor 4T Netball - it was a draw 3M Football - winners were Cambria 3B Tag Rugby -  winners were Cambria  5A Football - it was a draw 5G Netball - winners were Windsor 6M Hockey - winners were Windsor 6R Tag rugby - winners were Windsor So Windsor lead the inter house sports competition after round 1. More inter house matches will be played next half term.  RHS Secret Garden Competition RHS Campaign for School Gardening, in partnership with the Sky Film release of ‘The Secret Garden’, would like you to be inspired and join a competition! If you are a budding gardener and a keen artist, you can find yourself in a ‘secret garden’ of your own design! What would be in your dream garden? Why would it be special? Combine your knowledge and enjoyment of gardens with your artistic flair to come up with a drawing, a painting, a collage or a miniature model of your very own secret garden. If you would like to talk about your design or need help, please see Mrs. Pruce or Ms Gilham. Enjoy designing over the half term! All entries must be made by 19th November and children may submit their designs themselves or bring them to Mrs. Pruce or Ms Gilham, who will arrange to submit them directly from school. All information can be found from the link below: https://schoolgardening.rhs.org.uk/getmedia/6a85a4e8-9048-41eb-8d85-7d28fe562a17/RHS_Secret_Garden_A4_Childrens_Booklet-(web) We hope the children have lots of fun imagining and creating their secret gardens! Upper School Parents' Evenings - Bookings Now Open Upper School parents' evenings will take place when we return from the half term break, on the following days: Tuesday 3rd November (4.00 - 7.00 p.m.) Thursday 12th November (5.00 - 8.00 p.m.) We will be holding the appointments online, using the video conference function of our usual Parents' Evening booking system. To book your appointment(s), please use the following link. Bookings will be available from 4 p.m. on Friday (16th October).  https://sthelens.schoolcloud.co.uk/   We look forward to seeing many parents across the two evenings. PA Forum Meeting and Class Rep Vacancy The next PA Forum meeting will take place on Tuesday 17th November at 7.00 p.m. and will be held remotely using Google Meet. If you have any points that you would like to raise for discussion, please do share these with your class rep as soon as possible. Class representatives should send any points for discussion to Mrs. Smith by Friday 13th November at the latest please, at susmith@sthelenscollege.com. The PA have a vacancy for a class rep for Kingfishers class. If any parent in Kingfishers would like to become the class rep, please contact the PA at pa@sthelenscollege.com. Charity Fundraising Our pupil charity representatives have been meeting to discuss fundraising for the Autumn term and we will, as usual, be taking part in two nationwide initiatives: Children in Need and the Royal British Legion Poppy Appeal. Parents are often very generous when it comes to charity giving, and we know that many of you will wish to donate. This year, we are unable to accept cash donations in school but we have set up two JustGiving fundraising pages so that we can fundraise as a community - the links are in the relevant sections below. Some of our charity representatives have written these short pieces to introduce our fundraising for this term. Children in Need - Friday 13th November On Friday 13th November, children may come to school in their own clothes. The theme is Fluorescent and Reflective, so the children may like to wear something fluorescent, or perhaps to add funky fluorescent and reflective spots and stripes to their outfits.  This theme will link with our Road safety for Be Safe, Be Seen. Families are asked to make their donations (suggested £2 minimum donation, but all donations gratefully accepted) online via this link: https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/sthelenscollege-BBCChildrenInNeed2020?utm_campaign=lc_frp_share_transaction_fundraiser_page_launched&utm_content=bac5394f-7efe-42ce-9956-a54faf62bc03&utm_medium=email&utm_source=postoffice&utm_term=1599656370830 (by Georgia) The Royal British Legion Poppy Appeal This is a charity which helps raise awareness for the soldiers who unfortunately died during their work for our country during the war. It also raises money for the army and soldiers who have retired and are looking for career advice.  The war ended at 11.00 a.m. on the 11th day of the month of November (the eleventh month of the year). So that’s why on 11th November at 11.00 a.m. our school will have a 2 minute silence, during which we remember those who have died fighting courageously. Also we salute those who are thankfully still alive all because of their perseverance in World War II. St. Helen's College cares about the soldiers too. This is why we are asking that you donate to this cause - even a really small amount is appreciated. You can donate by following this link: https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/sthelenscollege-TheRoyalBritishLegion?utm_campaign=lc_frp_share_transaction_fundraiser_page_launched&utm_content=8aa41a46-0298-4a41-88b9-88c3288b2c7c&utm_medium=email&utm_source=postoffice&utm_term=1599656771013 This year poppies will NOT be on sale at school, but you can still bring your own poppies from home. So please on 11th November, when we stand and are silent, think about all those soldiers who risked their lives and think about all the nurses as well, some died too. Luckily, a lot of those soldiers are alive and we thank them for their bravery for England! Just think about it, if these courageous soldiers had not existed then our country would most likely be in peril right now! So this will be our day to reflect on the selfless soldiers who went out of their way to help us become a better country! (by Reece and James) Early Years Virtual Open Morning If you have a son or daughter who will be eligible for Ducklings or Nursery entry next September or subsequently, or if you have friends and family members who fall into this category, then you may be interested in our upcoming Early Years Open Morning. This will take place, online, on the morning of Friday 6th November. Mrs. Drummond, Mrs. Hunt and Mrs. Smith will all be available on the morning to present a virtual tour of our Early Years environment/provision and to answer questions about the application and entry procedures.  You can register for this event here, or by following the link on the homepage of the school website. Please do share this link and make sure your friends and family are aware of the event, so that they do not miss out on the opportunity to join us. If you have a child born after 1st September 2017 and you have not yet registered him or her for entry at the school, please do so at your earliest convenience. The entry process for next year's Ducklings Kindergarten and Nursery intake is beginning now and all children, including siblings, must be registered in good time! Staff Farewells Today we said goodbye to two members of staff who will be greatly missed at St. Helen's College. Mrs. Harker, one of our Lower School Teaching and Learning Assistants, is leaving us after eighteen years to move further away to a village near Preston and spend time with her family. She will be very sadly missed by all. The Lower School staff gave Mrs. Harker a wonderful send off today which was accompanied by a thoughtful and memorable 'So Long, Farewell' video featuring all members of the staff.   Mr. Barnard, one of our Premises team, has decided to make the move down to the West Country to join his daughter Mrs. Haar, who many will remember from her time with us at St. Helen's College! Mr. Barnard has been with us for two and a half years, driving the school minibus, working at Breakfast Club and assisting the Premises team with the upkeep and development of the school estates. We thank him for his work and wish him all the very best for his new life in Devon!

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