eNews: Friday 13th March 2020

From the Acting Co-Heads

In an extraordinary week, we welcomed Year 2 to Prep School on Tuesday and they had a magical morning of maths alongside Year 3 followed by lunch as part of their transition programme. We warmly welcomed Francis Osei back to St Michael’s on Thursday to talk to Year 6 about their choices growing up and the importance of good decision making.

Creativity and curiosity were the order of the day as Year 3-6 pupils began sharing their homework challenges on Wednesday. The maths and geography games created by Years 3 and 4 are a huge highlight and it was a joy to see the children playing their own games and developing their learning in such an interactive and fun way. The level of awareness shown by our Year 5 & 6 pupils in response to the Global Awareness themed challenges is impressive and reassuring. These well-informed, confident and forward-thinking children are, quite simply, awesome.

Meanwhile, over in Jersey, the senior pupils are having a fantastic time. They’ve played Football, Hockey and Netball tournaments and have visited the war tunnels, shops, swimming pool and zoo. The children are having a great time making some wonderful memories. Year 7 enjoyed a fantastic trip to Chatham Dockyard on Monday where they enjoyed a variety of STEM workshops. Science week was alight in the Prep School and Year 6 pupils are delighted to have earned their “Bunsen Burner licenses” as part of this. Thank you to the Science department for their continued hard work and innovation. Please do take a moment to enjoy the enthused faces of the children excited in their learning through the fantastic photos shared on Twitter.

We have spent this week focussing on the preparations and processes we will need to put into place in the coming days and weeks. This is a time for support and unity. We will see, as was expressed at yesterday’s government press conference, an increase in cases and individuals both isolating, as a precaution based on symptoms, and those dealing with the virus directly. If you have not yet had the opportunity to watch the press conference in its entirety, we would recommend doing so. We would also ask everyone to read the email sent on Thursday evening with the school’s response to the press conference, as it outlines our initial steps to be taken with regard to the advice issued therein. This is also available on the Message Board in the Parent Portal. As all schools and businesses are finding, we will be navigating a period of time in ‘uncharted waters’. Please rest assured the decisions we make will be done with forethought and consideration. Different settings will approach this in different ways and this does not mean one school is right and one wrong in their response, just different. We look forward to your ongoing support at this time.

Mrs Bridges and Mr Wiseman

 

News from the Head of Pre-Prep

Parents’ Evenings Tuesday 17th March and Thursday 19th March; sign up on Parents’ Evening System from 21.00 on Monday 2nd March.
• Food Bank Collection for Easter – collection from Monday 16th to Thursday 26th March
• Friday 20th March Reception Mother’s Day Assembly 9am

Coronavirus I know is a concern for you all. Please rest assured that as a school we are taking advice from Public Health England daily and we will continue to ask their advice about any individual family concerns. Meanwhile please help to reinforce our message to the children about washing their hands properly with soap and water. Our message to the children has been about washing their hands whilst singing Happy Birthday through twice. I know there are lots of other songs doing the rounds together with videos, so anything you can do to reinforce the message at home is great. Thank you to those families who have self-isolated where they have had any shred of doubt and thank you for informing me when you have taken this decision or indeed sharing your Coronavirus-free test results.

Mrs Halford from the Food Bank will be coming into assembly next Wednesday. She will be talking to the children about Food Banks prior to a collection of food for Easter. With Coronavirus on the increase, I know that Food Banks are concerned about the level of donations. We will start collecting food for the Food Bank for Easter from Monday 16th March. All donations need to be received by Thursday 26th March please.

They would particularly welcome the following:

4 pack toilet rolls, Washing powder / liquid or capsules, J Cloths, tinned custard, tinned rice pudding, dried milk powder, long life juice, large tins of carrots, chocolate spread, jam, tomato ketchup and of course Easter chocolate!

Please make sure you have signed up for parents’ evening either Tuesday 17th or Thursday 19th. These are 15 minute appointments with your child’s class teacher or 10 minute appointments with Miss Rawlinson and Mrs Ravayeh.

I always look forward to our Mother’s Day Assembly. Reception children would like to invite all their mums to their assembly at 9am in our hall. Coffee will be served in the dining room from drop off.

Overheard: I’m never getting married because I’ve got too much to do!

Have a lovely weekend,

Zerrin Leech

On this week’s Message Board

Please log into our Parents’ Portal and click into the Message Board to see new important information as follows:

  • Coronavirus – information for parents

On this week’s Community Events page

Please log into our Parents’ Portal and click into the Community Events page to see important community information.

News stories

Our news stories can be found by clicking “News” and “Latest News” on our website. To see our latest articles please click here

Pre-Prep Awards

Gold Stars

Thomas A for great teamwork and participation during Forest School
Mia for good work during our Maths lesson on money
Uma for becoming more independent during lessons
Conrad for showing great improvement in his handwriting
Abigail L for excellent effort in our lesson about money
Mona Swan for working hard at her letter formation in phonics
Lawson for fantastic progress in Maths and always trying his best
Amelia Rose for good improvement in handwriting
Cleo for consistent hard work in reading, writing and maths
Hugo for trying hard to use more expression in his reading
Luke for speedy work in doubling and halving
Elisa for working really hard with all classwork this week
Lily for carefully measuring the length of items using cm and mm
Daniel W for great work using the beebots
Sophie F for excellent writing when working with Alan Durant
Olivia Gibson for fantastic maths work this week

House Point Cup

Dover House with a total of 126 points
Olanna collected the Cup on behalf of Dover House

Music Award

Music Practice Cup: James L
Music Practice Award: Olanna E
Star Violinist Cup: George W

100 House Points Certificates

Leeds: Genevieve M
Windsor: George W

 

Festival pieces preview

In assembly Ruaridh, Alice O and Xavi performed for us on the piano. Some of our pianists will be entering the Tunbridge Wells Music Festival this year and we were lucky enough to hear their pieces that they are going to perform for the Festival.

News from Prep

Headteacher’s Stars

J Vanderlanh-McKeown For amazing dancing and participation at the Young Voices Concert
K Loukam For amazing dancing and participation at the Young Voices Concert
L Andrade For completing all of your times tables cards and now knowing up to your 12 times table
J Vanderlanh-McKeown For a wonderful Homework Challenge, showing excellent effort
G Gagg For a beautiful and original Homework Challenge
H Palmer For a very well-conceived and hugely enjoyable card game, which was well presented and managed
T Warren For a fantastic Global Monopoly game, involving huge effort and for managing your group very sensibly
F Merralls For a fabulous Homework Challenge Diarama, poem and presentation on the global warming in Australia
V Medlen For an excellent Homework Challenge poem and koala pouch
J Bashford For excelling yourself during a parent tour
S Andrade For excelling yourself during a parent tour

Players of the Match, week commencing 9th March 2020

Team Name Given for:-
U12A Hockey T Porter Great midfield play
U12B Team Amazing performance
U12C A Edwards-Matthews Good defensive work
U11A M Cameron & L Poracchia Scoring 4 goals and and fantastic defensive play
U11 Chargers A Goodwin Great play
U11 Rams N Brown Great all-round play
U10A L Bowen Great play
U10 Giants C Buff Great passing and defensive work rate
U10 Jets A McCrae & R Thornhill Good disciplined play
U9A S Taylor & C Wilson Great ball carrying
U9B J West Good energy all over the field
U8A S Mottram Great tackling and good goal
U8B O Epps Tireless work rate and strong tackling
U8C J Osbourne & S Doyle Hard work
U11A Netball I Johnson Voted by opposition
U11B M Lewis & S Cook Excellent defending and voted for by opposition
U11C A Mottram Good work rate
U10A A Mitchell Voted by opposition
U10B N Stinson Voted by opposition
U10C T Bax & A Madgett Voted by opposition and for great defence
U9A A Ashton Voted by opposition
U9B E Woods Voted by opposition
U9C L Bakharevski Voted by opposition
U8A E Julio & S Savidge Vote by opposition and great shooting
U8B C Zheung Voted by opposition
U8C F Digweed & A Pink Voted by opposition and good energy on the court

Senior School Open Days, Scholarships and Events

These can now be found on our Senior School page. 

Upcoming events include King’s Rochester, Oakwood Park Grammar School, Roedean School and Skinners’ School.

Latest News

 

 

 

Sunsets and sizzling sausages set the tone for the new term last Friday as Year 7 pupils celebrated the start of their senior education journey.

The annual event, traditionally held as a Camp Out, was delivered as a fun-filled barbecue night which the children enjoyed with teachers including St Michael’s Acting Head, Mrs Bridges.

Throughout the evening pupils tucked into dinner cooked by Deputy Head Mr Wiseman, and toasted marshmallows on an open fire.

And to make use of their new term energy, games and group bonding activites were carried out, followed by a walk up the school’s famous Warren where the sunset was relished in all of its glory.

Reflecting on the sucess of the event, Head of Year 7 and 8, Mrs Shield, said: “Unfortunately, we were unable to camp this year, but that did not dampen anybody’s spirits.

“One of the highlights of the evening was our twilight walk to the top of the Warren where we marvelled at the beautiful site that our school occupies.

“We viewed the bats swirling the skies in the dusk of late summer and ended the evening with a well-deserved hot chocolate – not forgetting the squirty cream and yet more marshmallows.

“Life-long friendships were made and re-established after the long summer break.”

This month St Michael’s Prep is celebrating the opening of its new Astro Turf pitch.

Completed during Summer 2020, the state-of-the-art facility will provide a huge boost to the school’s sporting facilities and allow it to offer a broader range of activities including boys hockey and football to its pupils.

Its floodlights will also enable St Michael’s to host sports matches during evenings, as well as inviting external schools and clubs to enjoy the new pitch throughout the year.

Ben Bridges, Director of Sports at St Michael’s, said: “We’re really excited to use the Astro Turf for the first time this month.

“We feel extremely lucky to be able to offer this to our pupils in both Prep and Pre-prep and are thrilled about the benefits it will bring to our sporting curriculum.

“As well as hockey, the new pitch will allow us to offer many other sports to pupils and will prevent the children from missing lessons due to inclement weather.”

Planning for the Astro Turf began in 2014 and has seen St Michael’s grounds undergo a significant transformation since construction began last summer. During this time pupils were fascinated by the diggers, dumpers and bulldozers which visited the school, while nursery and kindergarten children were treated to close-up views of the machinery.

Mr Bridges added: “Although it was a slightly delayed start due to the poor weather we faced, this feels like the perfect time to put the incredible space to good use.

“This is really going to move sport at St Michael’s to the next level, as well as providing us with opportunities to engage with the local community. We’re excited all round.”

 

The Governors of St. Michael’s Prep School take pleasure in announcing the appointment of Nik Pears as our new Head Teacher with effect from January 2021.

Nik was educated at St Dunstan’s College, London and is a graduate of Cambridge University. He is currently Head of Prep at Kent College Pembury, a post he has held since 2016. Prior to that, he was Headmaster of the Junior School at Sevenoaks Prep for 5 years. Nik is also an ISI inspector and a governor at Dulwich Prep, Cranbrook. We believe that he has the experience and qualities required to lead St Michael’s into the next chapter of its history.

Nik represented Kent U18 group at rugby and has a love of all sports. He is an accomplished musician and has performed at The O2 and Wembley Arenas. He is an Ambassador for “We See Hope”, a charity working with orphans and vulnerable young people in sub Saharan Africa. Nik devised The Social Entrepreneurs Project an initiative that challenges young people to turn £10 seed capital into £100 or more with their profits going to support the work of the charity.

We feel very fortunate to have secured Nik’s headship and welcome him and his wife Emma and two children, Jessica and Josiah into the St. Michael’s family from the start of next year. Nik has said

“I am delighted to have been appointed the next Head of St Michael’s Prep. Having lived in the area for the past twenty years, it is a school I have known and long admired for its ambitious and child-centred approach to learning. There is a very special atmosphere in the school and I am excited to become a part of the community, getting to know the children, parents and staff over the months and years ahead. St Michael’s is privileged to have an experienced and committed Senior Leadership Team and I very much look forward to working together with them as we embark on an exciting future for the school.” 

Some of our super St Michael’s Swimmers have won an array of silverware at recent events.

At the Sevenoaks Swimming Club presentation evening, I Pennington Legh was presented with the Kingsbury Cup for U10 girls; A Green was awarded the Kingsbury Cup for U10 boys; E Green received runner up plate for the best U9 boy; S. Taylor was awarded the Mike Radford Trophy for most improved U9 boy; A Ashton was presented with the U9 Individual Medley Cup and U9 trophy for most improved swimmer; B Tovey and J Taylor were both awarded plaques with their positions from the recent Sevenoaks Club Championships.

At the Black Lion Gala, Gillingham, at the start of March our swimmers again came away with medals. A Ashton won three gold, one bronze, one fourth and one sixth medal; A Green three gold and two silver medals; E Green four silver and one bronze medal; S Taylor one silver and one fourth medal and J Taylor a fourth position medal. V Medlen also came away with a medal from the gala.

Well done to all those swimmers; your hard work and dedication is certainly paying off!

Mrs Denton

Swim School Manager