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

As Y5 pupil, C Hunter, explained during Monday’s assembly, Sevenoaks School has organised weekly food/supply collections for those in need during these very uncertain times.  The collections have benefited local organisations such as One Big Family: Helping the Homeless, Friends for Families, The Hygiene Bank, Sevenoaks Food Bank: Loaves & Fishes, Community Cupboard, area primary schools and others.  Miss Cat Davison, the School’s Director of Service and Social Impact, updates its online social media feeds (@sevenoaksimpact on Twitter and Instagram) with the items needed each week.  We hope that you will consider helping with this effort.  Together we can make a huge difference for those living right here in our community!
The details of the collections are provided below.  If you do wish to participate, please ensure that items are unopened and handled with washed or sanitised hands, and that social distancing is strictly adhered to on delivery.
What: Food, Supplies (check social media links for current needs)
When:   Every Tuesday, 9am – 12pm
Where: Outside Claridge House, Sevenoaks School,TN13 1HU
(Claridge House is just to the right of the main entrance of Knole Park on High Street)
On Monday our community-minded pupil also discussed a book collection which took place earlier this year for children in Ghana.  Below are photos of EduSpots centres where the books are available for local communities throughout Ghana.

We’ve been amazed by the phenomenal success of the Art Department’s recent challenge “Painting without Paint”. Set as part of our remote learning programme, children were asked to select a work of art of their choice and to recreate it at home – but without using paint!

The Art Department has been overwhelmed by submissions, which Miss Rodwell, described as “creative, humorous and inventive”. She added “Staff have been impressed by submissions that showed how carefully the children have looked at their chosen artworks in order to create such brilliant responses.”

Posts on our Twitter account have received positive responses from prestigious art galleries, such as the Tate and the National Gallery, with The Lowry in Manchester commenting “Wow, we love this!!” on T Neville’s version of L S Lowry’s “Man Lying on a Wall”. But it’s not just art galleries in the UK, who have responded to the children’s art; their work has been liked by the Van Gogh Museum in Amsterdam, the Staatliche Kunstsammlungen in Dresden and the Mauritshuis in Den Haag. One Year 3 pupil, who was inspired by artist Aja Trier, even reached New York, as permission was sought to post an image of one of her paintings. She was delighted to allow us to feature her work and on seeing J Gagg’s interpretation commented “Oh my gosh that is precious! Please tell the artist I love it! I will post on my Instagram and Facebook. Thank you!” She went on to tell us “I am always so humbled when kids are inspired by my work, but this is next level!”

In order to show you all the wonderful work our pupils have done, we’ve put together an online gallery of the work. Talking about the project and the reaction, Mrs Barratt declared “This is wonderful!” and reactions from other schools included the comment “Excellent work St Michael’s Art Department this is a really fun activity”.

Mrs Bridges told us “I am absolutely delighted, and inspired, by the way that the children have responded to these challenges. Creativity is keeping us connected, not only within our own community but across the world too!”

We can’t wait to see what the department comes up with next. Miss Rodwell is keeping us in suspense “I’ve been working on a new one today …”. We’re sure that our pupils will have even more opportunity to excel!

Click here to view our online gallery of more ingenious images.

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

Well done to our doubles girls, E Julio and S Savidge, who also played in last weekend’s Junior Orange Ball Tournament in Sevenoaks. They played four matches, won two, beating Sevenoaks Prep and Lady Boswell’s and lost two to the eventual finalists Amherst and Granville.

This was a great performance by the girls, particularly in the light of little experience of Orange Ball competition.

Well done!