Acting Head’s Blog 16th October 2020 Friday 16th October 2020

Every Friday I give thanks for another week of school completed with your children, and now we’ve made it to the end of a busy half term!

I want to take this opportunity to thank you all for your patience and support with regard to the Covid-19 restrictions we have put in place for the whole school community. We know all too keenly how other areas of the country are being affected at the moment and the longer we can keep our St Michael’s bubble safe, the greater benefit this will bring to our young people.

This week I have enjoyed seeing and finding out about some superb learning in the Prep School. I got to listen to some very creative but extremely revolting recipes shared beautifully by Year 3. I was honoured to judge some fabulous models inspired by learning about Hindu Gods in Year 5, and was wowed by the beautiful glasswork created by our Year 8 artists. Learning at St Michael’s is thriving! The most enjoyable part for me is witnessing the children’s excitement when they talk about what they have discovered or created, and I hope that you have been experiencing that after pick-up too.

Some of our Year 6 children faced the Kent Test yesterday, and they demonstrated a healthy mixture of calmness and excitement to put their hard work and preparation to play. The whole school showed support for those children as they trod quietly around the school so as not to disrupt the Year 6s in their focus and flow. I hope that those that went through the assessment enjoyed a well-deserved evening of relaxation after it was completed!

As we look ahead to the next half term and beyond, the most challenging thing is possibly not knowing when the end of the Covid-19 restrictions will be. In life, there’s a lot to be said for pacing yourself, knowing how long you need to sustain your energy and efforts to reach a goal or the light at the end of the tunnel. There is no question that the restrictions in place are hard for everyone and the most straightforward school routines are no longer habitual and require extra effort, attention and usually many more steps! To sustain ourselves to get to the finish line, wherever that may be, we must take extra care to look after ourselves and each other. I am truly grateful to all of the staff, in every quarter, for continually going the extra mile to make each day seem familiar and joyful for the children.

Here’s to the opportunity we now have to switch off and reset ready for another action-packed half term. Will it be easy? Nope. Will it be worth it? Absolutely!

Mary Bridges

Latest News

Prep pupils treated classmates and music teachers to a variety of musical performances this week in their half termly concert.

Performed in three instalments within their bubbles, the musicians showcased a variety of pieces, varying in both genre and instrument.

And although parents were unable to attend the concerts due to Covid-19 restrictions, the pupils’ families received a recording of the event.

Gordon Baird, Director of Music, said “We were delighted by how these first concerts of the academic year went despite the absence of the children’s parents. It was a lovely intimate experience for the children to play or sing to their friends and we heard some confident, accomplished performances.

Mr Baird added: “For some, it was their first time playing in a concert in the Prep school and we look forward to organising many more opportunities for them to perform throughout the year.”

A montage of the three music concerts can be found on the St Michael’s YouTube page at



Spooky spiders and plump pumpkins sparked Halloween fun at St Michael’s this week.

Supported by the school’s Parents and Friends association, pupils enjoyed two games which offered great prizes to winners.

Coordinator of the Halloween competitions and P & F committee member, Kelly Downey said: “Given the restrictions currently in place, the P&F are focusing on strengthening the school community for parents and children this year.

“The competitions are a simple way for the children to have some fun in the week before half term, while raising some funds for the P&F.”

Children in Pre-Prep were tasked with guessing the number of spooky spiders in the jar, while Prep children were asked to guess the weight of a pumpkin. Pupils made a donations to the P & F in exchange for each guess they made.

And the winners of the games, Herbie W (Pre-Prep) A Ward, M Little, L Lutzow and H Owen (Prep), were awarded Halloween hampers which will help them celebrate this year’s festival in spooktacular style.

Kelly added: “The funds raised for the P&F will go towards funding activities and facilities for the children to enrich their time at the school.”

For more information about St Michael’s P & F association visit


Strawberries and sunflowers were just some of the items celebrated in last week’s harvest assemblies.


The annual Pre-Prep event, performed as three instalments this year, saw Reception, Year 1 and Year 2 pupils sing, dance and give prayer for the harvest while learning about the festival from their music teacher, Mrs Raveyeh.



Reflecting on the success of the events, Louise Raveyeh said: “I am quite moved by the children’s enthusiastic singing in our harvest celebration.


“It was a wonderful opportunity for the children to realise that there is joy in giving and sharing what we have and happiness for those who gratefully receive it.


“Their singing and eagerness to share with others was heartwarming.”



During the assemblies pupils sung songs about harvest time, nature and the variety of fruit and vegetables grown in this country.


Louise said: “I wanted the children to be thankful for what they have by realising what an amazing rainbow variety of food we have, created with individual characteristics just like them.


“I wanted them to realise the sense of joy that there is in sharing what we have.


“The songs reflect our celebration of what we have and realisation of the process of planting, harvesting and sharing.”



And it wasn’t just songs that helped the children express their thanks. Helped by their generous parents, Pre-Prep donated hundreds of food items and household essentials to the Swanley branch of Trussell Trust food bank.



Head of Pre-Prep at St Michael’s, Zerrin Leech, said: “We had tables, cupboards and bags festooned with food last week as our families gave very kind donations of food and other items.


“A huge thank you must go to the pupils’ parents for their wonderful generosity once again this year which will be gratefully received by the Trussell Trust.


“Thank you also to Mrs Ravayeh for leading our three harvest assemblies. They have been lovely with lots of new songs as well as my all-time favourite, Cauliflowers Fluffy.”





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.”

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