Headmaster’s Bulletin – Edition 18
This half term our assembly theme is ‘self-sacrifice’ and in the Prep this week we began to consider this theme in light of our aims and our ethos. The notion of relying upon each other, looking to our friends as well as being happy and willing to turn to our teachers for support and encouragement was very much at the heart of the message delivered by me first thing on Monday morning.
We recognise that being able to rely on one another involves, to some extent, accepting that we all have differences. We explain to the pupils here that those differences ought not get in the way of us being able to help one another out, whenever help is needed however.
We all enjoyed an extra assembly session on Tuesday morning in the Prep, when Mrs Searle, one of the nurses who helps to take care of all the pupils across the Schools that make up the Hampton Trust, accompanied her young adult son Eoin to the Prep. Eoin is studying photography at college and had very kindly offered to mount a display of his work for the boys and staff. What is perhaps most remarkable about Eoin and his work is that he lives relatively independently of his parents and continues to study photography and produce truly beautiful photographic works despite living with cerebral palsy. Eion and Mrs Searle explained some of the creative impetus behind the photographs that have been on display in the James Hall this week but they both also explained the nature of some of the sacrifices they have had to make as a family in order for Eion’s studies to progress. Do please ask your sons about their impressions of this particular assembly; I was very moved by the empathy and sensitivity the boys relied upon in order to question Eion about his life and work at the conclusion of his presentation.
Emotions ran high in the Prep again on Wednesday as we were all rapt by an assembly delivered not by Mr Chilcott, but by his wife, Mrs Chilcott! It could have felt rather like Mr Chilcott had endeavoured to wriggle out of speaking to the boys (as if ever he would) but of course, this was not the case at all. Again, on the theme of self-sacrifice, Mrs Chilcott presented the incredibly moving story of her grandfather, Archer Mansfield, his involvement in both World Wars and the story of his friendships, his triumphs, and the sacrifices he made in order to help and support others over a lifetime. There was a stunned silence at the conclusion of Mrs Chilcott’s presentation; boys and staff alike were incredibly moved by the courage and entirely humble self-belief that led to the self-sacrifices that Archer Mansfield made. We were all very privileged to hear yet another personal, real life account of our theme in action.
This week in the Prep has also been marked out as ‘Climate Week’. We looked to cover a range of tasks and activities across the curriculum to support our study of our environment. On Monday, Year 6 boys watched a number of short videos outlining the causes and effects of global warming. This provided the inspiration for an independent writing task for the week’s prep. Boys handed their work in today and there was a tremendous selection of material produced. Factual accounts and reports accompanied creative narratives inspired by a conservation theme.
Year 3’s current unit in Humanities is ‘The land beneath our feet’ which this week concerned landfills. Boys discovered what a landfill is, and how we can reduce the amount of rubbish we create to see less make its way into landfills. They explored the three R’s – in this instance, reduce, reuse, recycle. They also talked about how we can all raise awareness so others know the importance of these three approaches.
Running through the week were two parallel competitions: the first, to create an environmental awareness poster, the second, to create a weather station. A number of each were handed in today and there were again, some excellent efforts. Special mention goes to Year 3 who accounted for the most entries. Some of Year 3 also assisted Mr Wilson with a so-called ‘rubbish audit’. The boys and Mr Wilson sorted through a good number of bins from almost all our classrooms to see how much of our classroom waste we are currently recycling – or not!
Each week I read to the pupils in the Pre-Prep and this week it was my turn to read a story to the children in the Kindergarten. The children had been building (indoor) tents and toasting marshmallows over a (nearly real) open fire in the Pre-Prep’s front garden. It was entirely fitting then that I should have read to them a tale of two bears, whose outdoor adventures I hope will serve to develop even further the currently outdoor focussed imaginations of our youngest pupils.
Boys in Year 5 this week had a wonderful opportunity to further develop their imaginations whilst they wandered about Tate Britain, in a very reflective fashion, on Thursday. The boys in Year 5 have reached a point in our Art Scheme of Work where they have been studying portraiture, so the range of portraits on display at the gallery was the focus of their visit. Mr Richards “volunteered” to be the subject of a portraiture-style drawing lesson for the boys this week. The boys’ efforts were excellent of course, with each one trying their best to capture (as I understand it) ‘the essence of the subject’. As they say, if a picture paints a thousand words…
Have a great weekend,
I hope you all had a restful half term. It seems a while ago now but there was a fixture on the last day before the break, where the U9s had two games against Twickenham Prep. The A team came up against a strong side and with themselves a few players short due to injury and illness it turned out to be a cracking match. The Hampton boys have been doing extremely well so far this term and maybe there was a touch of complacency to begin with. However, this was soon forgotten as TPS took an early lead and the boys knew they were in for a game. Admirably they composed themselves and started to remember the coaching they had received and quickly came back to level the scores, but TPS refused to lie down and neither side was able to gain a lead they could hold on to. With 30 seconds to go Hampton Prep were one try in the lead but TPS continued to press and fittingly scored in the final few seconds to tie the game, which in hindsight was probably the fairest result of what was a thoroughly entertaining game. The B team had less of a struggle, however TPS certainly played their part in a good game, but it was clear which team were the strongest and the U9s as a whole continue to march on and are showing what a strong sporting year group they are. This strength will be tested next week when all four teams will play against King’s House.
On Tuesday the U8s played the first of our fixtures against King’s House with all four teams playing. All games were very competitive and it is starting to become clear that they are also a strong sporting year group with a good deal of depth. The A team had a great game and narrowly lost 8-6. The other three games resulted in draws; the B team 7-7, the C team 5-5 and the D team 12-12. Rugby is an odd sport and even without tackling and rucking and the other complicated factors that bemuse most people, it is still very difficult to get the hang of. Therefore, it is testament to the boys and the staff, that the year 3 boys have become so competitive in such a short space of time. It is great to see their understanding develop and I am sure that as they move into year 4 and the introduction of contact rugby that they will be in a good place.
Wednesday saw the U11s play two fixtures against Staines Prep. It was two good wins for Hampton Prep but the opposition performed well and stuck at it. They don’t have it easy as there aren’t many pupils who play rugby at Staines Prep but nonetheless they put up a good fight it was great to see our boys act so graciously in their victories.
Tomorrow the U11s play in a tournament at Durston House and next week sees the U8s playing against Staines Prep, the U9s playing King’s House, the U10s departing for their tour to Manchester and on Monday house cross-country. Another busy week, have a good weekend.
Please note that due to Open Morning today, we have been unable to make the usual awards in assembly, however, these will be distributed on Tuesday morning as on Monday afternoon, Years 1 and 2 will be involved in Inter-House Cross Country races from 2.00pm. Once our Pre-Prep children have run the course, we shall return to Pre-Prep, so please note the children should be collected from here at the usual time. Year 2 children must bring in their PE kit.
Also in order to give you time to prepare, we shall be holding our World Book Day celebrations on Friday 10 March and would like the children to come to school dressed as a favourite book character. Please do not feel obliged to purchase expensive readymade costumes, if you would like some alternatives then do ask one of us.
Next week the children in Reception to Year 2 will be taking part in an Online Safety Workshop – please be assured the material covered will be age appropriate, and that there will also be a Workshop for Parents at 6.00pm in the James Hall at Prep. Do come along if you can – this is a subject we all need to be ‘au fait’ with in the face of new technologies.
A round up of the week in the classrooms:
Kindergarten have been on Safari this week! Our role-play area has been transformed into a jungle themed tent and we have used our binoculars and torches to hunt for animals both inside and outside the classroom. The children made an animal counting book, matching the correct number of animals to the numeral and then taking a photo. We put on our ‘Art Detective ‘ hats and looked carefully at the painting of Rousseau’s tiger in a tropical storm. We added sound effects and actions to really create storm like conditions. Some of the children then chose to become artists, using either oil pastels or paints to create tiger pictures. Our jungle tent led to much discussion about camping and this, in turn, led us to building a ‘camp fire’ in the front garden and toasting marshmallows! No campfire would be complete without a campfire song so we made one up! Ask your children to sing it to you. We continued to develop the idea of food and drink enjoyed in the outdoors and made hot chocolate by melting squares of chocolate and stirring it into warm milk. The children were delighted to observe the changing state of the chocolate and of course loved drinking it! Next week we are looking forward to continuing our camping theme and think the children will love the addition of sleeping bags into the tent.
Reception children this week have been Meteorologist and have been predicting and watching the weather forecasts this week. We have talked in depth all about different sorts of weather and looked at the Water Cycle. Some of the boys predicted the arrival of the storm Doris in their forecasts! The children have written about what their favourite thing to do on a hot and sunny day and a wet and rainy day. They listened to the story ‘The Little Raindrop’ by Joanna Gray. The children were then each set the task to think about where they would like their little rain drop to go in the Water Cycle.
In mathematics this week some children have been counting up 1p’s and 2p’s and others 1p’s to find the total. We have been playing shop keepers, finding and counting the correct amount of pennies to buy animals. We have also been practicing some weather themed addition and subtraction sums. The boys are enjoying using the classroom book shop and spending time pricing and pretending to be shop keepers and customers!
Wishing you a hopefully sunny and maybe a little cloudy weekend!
This week Year 1 have continued writing instructions. On Monday we wrote instructions for ‘How to make a jam sandwich’ and we continued by reading ‘Don’t let the pigeon drive the bus’, drawing pigeons by carefully following instructions and writing our own pigeon stories.
In maths, we consolidated counting in 2s, 5s and 10s, using our knowledge to count in groups in preparation for multiplication. At the end of the week we worked on sharing objects and numbers equally.
We began our new topic ‘Plants’ in science this week. The children enjoyed planting their own broad beans and we will be observing and recording them growing over the next few weeks.
Year Two have had a very busy first week back! In English, our work on books by Simon Bartram has continued and we have been writing diary entries from the point of view of tourists to the moon and ‘wanted’ posters to help Bob spot aliens.
In maths we have been adding and taking away by partitioning numbers into tens and units.
The highlight of our week was our trip to the Florence Nightingale Museum on Wednesday. The children were very excited about the day and there was a lot of talk in the few days before it, mostly about who was bringing what for their packed lunch! After getting the train to Waterloo and a short walk, we ate lunch in a room at St Thomas’ hospital that looked out onto the Houses of Parliament. When we got to the museum, we were met by Florence Nightingale herself and we time travelled back to when she was alive. She told us all about her life, including how she had a pet owl called Athena and a grumpy sister called Pop. We did some activities and learned about the important changes that Florence made to nursing. After two hours in the museum, we had a quick walk back to Waterloo to get on the train to Hampton.
The children behaved impeccably throughout the day and were brilliant ambassadors for the School. We were very grateful to Miss Cole, Mrs Duggan and Mrs Keller for coming with us and helping us on the trip – thank you!