Head’s Blog 29th March 2018 Thursday 29th March 2018

As Easter approaches with all the celebrations of new life and promise, I suspect there are many of you, along with many of us, who are ready for a new life rhythm for the next two weeks and the promise of time to refresh en famille.

The Easter story is very much gory and glory and presents unique challenges each year for what we tell our very youngest pupils.

Our whole school assembly this Easter took the theme of trying not to let people down as Jesus’ disciples did to Him. But as failing is a very human condition we must also take time to understand that forgiveness and moving on are an important part of healing and growing.

The music department kicked off the week with a wonderful inclusive orchestra day for all our own pupils and pupils from Amherst, Otford and St Thomas’ primaries. They made a glorious sound as they showcased their talent, and the large sections of brass and percussion added a lot of oomph to the swelling sound.
The lighthearted animal theme made it fun for all and I almost thought I could see the elephant clumping through.

Congratulations to Gordon, Sally, Emily, Jackie, Jack, Matt, Rob and honorary peri for the day Becky and the marketing team who masterminded invitations and logistics. The children were beaming.

On Tuesday the Easter bunny visited Pre-Prep and we thank Jason for donning the outfit not for the first time.

Jason leaves us during the Easter holiday to take up a residential estates role at Ashford School, which we congratulate him on. In his two years here he has proved a quick thinking, courteous and committed colleague and I know he will miss us just as we will miss him. We thank him for his contribution to the team and wish him well in his new role.

On Wednesday, Year 1 led a wonderful Easter concert performance, set in a chocolate shop, exploring the themes of rivalry and repentance and reprised their “With New Hearts” song in our whole school assembly.

We are sorry to lose Amy Owen as one-to-one assistant in Pre-Prep. We wish her well in her new role as cover supervisor at Otford primary thank her for all her work here. We hope that our links with Otford will enable our paths to cross again.

Our final assembly is celebrating all that has been achieved in so many areas of school life this term and as we do so,  in the Italian mountains another group of children will be coming towards the end of a fantastic week skiing. As soon as term starts after Easter the music tour will be away and I with them. Do keep in touch with us over the holidays and send us your Easter photos. We like to keep in touch with our families and celebrate all the unusual and interesting things they do.

I wish to congratulate J Hudson on his gold and bronze swimming medals in the National Schools Association swimming Championships last weekend. It was wonderful to see these outstanding achievements at a national level.

In thinking about the busyness of the summer term we have taken the decision to have the campout following on from Sports Day and not as a separate event. Please put the date in your diary Friday 29th of June and prepare for the epic event of the season all in one go! The calendar is live online and you can download it to your phone filtered or unfiltered.

Whatever you’re doing, I hope your holiday is filled with happy times together and that you all rest and are refreshed.

Happy Easter!

Jill Aisher

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The good weather has given us lots of opportunities to play outside this week.

Inside it’s been ‘barking mad’ as children have enjoyed playing with a tray full of bark, filling up bottles, weighing and spooning it into different sized containers and we’ve been in fits of laughter, playing with shaving foam.  It was very messy but great fun!

Our recycled cardboard boxes, yoghurt pots and plastic bottles have turned into amazing models.  Some of the designs have been spectacular and very creative!

In true Easter egg hunt fashion, the children excitedly looked high and low on Tuesday in search of those elusive Easter Eggs that the Easter Bunny had left scattered around.

As it was the last week of term children enjoyed one of their favourite treats: hot dogs, affectionately named witches’ fingers.

We hope you all have a wonderful egg-citing, cracking Easter!

Mrs Smith

 

Year 6 spent a high energy morning on Thursday working with Kilka from the company West End in Schools. With her expertise and guidance, they worked on key scenes from Shakespeare’s ‘Macbeth’, bringing the murder of King Duncan to life. The morning culminated in a sharing session in which all three form groups performed their segment of this key event in the play. Pupils are now really looking forward to studying ‘Macbeth’ in English lessons next term.

Mrs Andrade

Our recycling took a fruity turn this week as we planted the tops of pineapples into our lovely hand-painted flowerpot gifts for Mrs Aisher, Mrs Leech and Mrs Birmingham, before using a pineapple slicer to core out the pineapples and eat them as a juicy snack. Mmmm yummy!

But the culinary inventiveness didn’t stop there: we also made some tasty Starburst slime and a mouth-watering lemon aroma scented the air on Tuesday, as the children made a scrumptious lemon drizzle cake.

An animal shelter, a Buckingham Palace sentry box and a toy shop have appeared in The Hive this week and Easter bunnies have bounced their way home in the guise of flowerpots!

We finally had the opportunity to play outside this week and the children made good use of the Didi cars and had a game of badminton.

Well done to Tristan and Harry, who set a new record of hitting the ping pong ball back and forth to each other without stopping. The record now stands at a cool 132. Fantastic play and fascinating to watch. Really exciting!

Thank you everyone for another fun-packed week.

Mrs N Smith

Wednesday was a very exciting day for us, with regard to our school links.

We received a package of letters from our partner school in China. The bi-lingual customs declaration was of great interest to the children and it was a joy to witness the excitement of ‘snail mail’! The Year 6 children received letters from children in the same school year in Y.K.Pao School, our partner school, sharing details about what is similar and different in their lives and school. Some had included photos to give us a further insight into the school, and some mentioned some of the challenges for China in the near future – urbanisation and pollution in particular.

At lunch time some of our Year 7 children were able to Skype our partner school in Texas, Hidden Forest. This is a link that has been facilitated by the staff who run Curiosity Curriculum, as both schools have introduced the Curiosity Curriculum. Our Curiosity Curriculum facilitator, John, was visiting Hidden Forest, so seeing him (and some St Michael’s pencil cases!) there was very strange. The children shared details about their school day, school environment, climate and interests. They also discussed the Curiosity Curriculum challenges they had been researching and presenting and discovered that some of them were doing the same challenge. We hope that they will be able to discuss these in more depth in the future.

Thank you to Curiosity Curriculum and our partner schools for these enriching and exciting opportunities.

http://www.ykpaoschool.cn/
https://www.neisd.net/hiddenforest
http://www.curiosity-club.co.uk/

Mrs Chugg