Kindness and Compassion

Posted on: 08/01/2021

As we embrace 2021, it is more important than ever before that we bring our attention to the core values on which St. Helen’s College prides itself, and reflect on how we as a community live our lives. We know that the next few months may bring challenges and worries for many reasons but together we need to put the children at the centre of all of this to give them hope, joy, laughter and some form of routine each day. In doing so, we can enable them to continue flourishing as creative and inquisitive young learners.

This week in Upper School assemblies the children have been introduced to one of my new favourite books, The Boy, The Mole, The Fox and The Horse, by Charlie Mackesy. The book charts the journey of four wonderful characters as they share philosophical questions on friendship, hope and love. The book can be enjoyed by anyone from a 3 year old to adults and I know that many of the staff in school and some children are already familiar with it.

I regularly dip into the book and find myself pondering over the words.  I am often inspired by them; they can raise emotions I was not aware of but the book has also given me great strength over the period of this pandemic.  

I highly recommend that every family has a copy of this book to share, love and discuss together.  There is also a lovely audible version of the book available here which you may enjoy too. 

We have launched a challenge for the children (and parents) in today’s newsletter to create their own philosophical quotes and illustrations, in the style of Charlie Mackesy, based on our school values. I hope that many of you will have a go, and I very much look forward to sharing them with you in due course. 

If you would like to meet Charlie, as the children have this week, then do watch this short video here and visit his website here.

I leave you with some of the words from Charlie in his introduction to the book: “I hope this book encourages you, perhaps, to live courageously with more kindness for yourself and for others”.

Over the following weeks we need to be kind to each other and to ourselves as we navigate our way through yet another period of uncertainty but with hope for the future. We need to celebrate all the good things present with us now - your wonderful children - who this week have given so much joy to their teachers and friends, albeit remotely for most. 

Mrs. Drummond