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Headmaster’s Bulletin – Edition 19

This Week

Dear Parents,

Those of you with sons in the Prep will have received an email this week about the upcoming Year 3 Charity Fundraising Fair, which the boys are helping to organise and which they will be running as part of their L.I.O.N. Award in approximately a fortnight’s time. A critically important part of the programme includes encouraging our pupils to ‘get involved’. We want the boys to develop their own leaderships skills by initiating and running a range of endeavours to support and nurture others. There is of course an obvious link to our current assembly theme of ‘self-sacrifice’.

I have recently discovered The Jubilee Centre for Character and Virtues, based at the University of Birmingham. In particular, I was drawn to some research into character development carried out by Dr Tom Harrison. He has co-authored a report entitled ‘Building Character Through Youth Action’ and one of the conclusions from it stood out for me. He and his co-researchers say ‘Young people build their character through social action, and providers help to guide this development rather than teach it’. To me, this perfectly sums up what we are trying to achieve with the L.I.O.N. Award!

If you are interested, you can read the full report by clicking on this link:

If you wish to watch a documentary to find out for yourselves about the Jubilee Centre for Character and Virtues, you can click on this link:

Plenty of character building activity for Prep boys this week in other forms and for one year group in particular. Three boys from Year 5 represented our school at a public speaking competition at Epsom College yesterday and although they did not win, they were highly commended for their insightful and charismatic speeches. They chose to talk on the topic ‘If I were the Headmaster, I would…’. I could not attend the competition and more’s the pity of course, as I recognise I need all the advice I can get.

A good number of Year 5 boys have also reached Manchester this afternoon, to begin their weekend rugby tour. I expect the Prep school fellows they are due to play will provide plenty of opportunities for further character development to take place there, along with a few lessons to watch and learn from as they spectate at two major professional sporting team’s games tonight and tomorrow afternoon.

We take the safety of your children very seriously here of course and yesterday all pupils, from the Pre-Prep and Prep enjoyed digital safety awareness workshops throughout the course of the day. I was very glad to see many parents last night at the workshop we organised for you too. If you ever have any concerns about your child including their online activity we are always very happy to support and where we can, help. If we believe we cannot help, we will certainly connect you with someone who can.

Have a great weekend,

Tim Smith




Sport Bulletin

On Saturday the U11 team took part in the Durston House rugby tournament. Due to a number of reasons the team was a combination of year 5 and year 6 boys with Alessandro Tafuro, Jack Price and William Lawson stepping up from year 5 to play. The tournament comprised of 4 schools and we were to play each school, before a play off to determine the final standings.

As is often the way, we started slowly and lost our first game to Orley Farm 15-10. We actually conceded in the very last play of the game but it gave the boys the wake-up call they needed leading into the second game against Durston House. In this game we were much more switched on and focused and the boys listened carefully to the advice we had given them after the first game, eventually winning 25-15. The final game was against arguably the strongest opposition; in The Hall school. It was a game of two halves with Hampton Prep dominating the first half and scoring some lovely well worked team tries and The Hall dominating the second half. This resulted in the match being drawn, probably fairly so, at 20-20.

This meant that Hampton Prep proceeded into the final as a result of finishing second place in the group stage. It also meant we had to play The Hall school again and once again it was another tight affair. The Hall scored relatively early on and Hampton Prep had to spend a lot of time defending, something they did admirably. Then a fantastic run from Jamie Wilson saw Hampton Prep score to level the game with 4 minutes left.

Hampton Prep were back defending and their attitude to this; whereby each boy would be putting in tackle after tackle for the cause, was something I was extremely proud of. However, unfortunately luck was not on our side and with a minute left The Hall intercepted a pass we threw close to our line and flopped over for an easy score. Therefore, 10-5 was the final score and the only thing that separated the two teams over two games, was that one fateful pass. I tried to make it clear to the boys how proud they should be of their efforts and it was an extremely enjoyable morning. Id finally like to make one more special mention of the boys in year 5 that played. They in no way looked out of place and all three contributed significantly to the cause.

House cross country was scheduled for Monday but alas the weather had other ideas. It wasn’t so much that there was a problem with the boys running in the rain, but we want these occasions to be enjoyed by all and for the boys not racing at the time and therefore spectating, we didn’t feel it was appropriate for them to do as the rain fell. Therefore, we have re-arranged for Monday 6th March.

On Tuesday the U8s travelled with two teams to Staines Prep, the A team won 13-12 and the B team won 10-4. It was a pretty horrible wet and cold afternoon yet the year 3 boys continue to show how well they are learning the game. On Wednesday 12 boys from year 5 and year 6 attended the Epsom College Prep School cross country competition. There were approximately 250 boys running with our highest placed athlete being Jack Price in year 5, who finished in 23rd place.

Today we depart for the year 5 rugby tour to Manchester, so I’ll have plenty to tell you about next week, along with house cross country, house rugby and fixtures against Kings House and Bishopsgate. Have a good week.

Prep News

In assembly this week the following Headmaster’s Commendations were awarded: Ali Bux (3W) For winning the climate week poster competition, Edward Reilly (4H) For showing great enthusiasm in science, in particular for his splendid home-made percussion kit, Asa Jennings (5C) For consistent effort in English, writing well-constructed and carefully thought out pieces of creative writing which are a joy to read! Isaac Tarragano (5C) For showing excellent skill, creativity and leadership in the movie makers CCA and John Snaith (6C) For winning the climate week weather station competition. Well done to those boys!

Before we broke for half term Year 6 held a cake sale in aid of their chosen charities raising a total of £106.75 for Water Aid and Save the Children. Thank you to all that donated and well done to Year 6!

During Easter 2017, Chris Harrison will be running a cricket coaching courses ideal for young cricketers to prepare for the upcoming season. Each session will include skill drills for batting, bowling and fielding as well as net and match play practice. Perfect preparation for the club and school cricket seasons! Please click here to find out more details and how to book a place.

Pre-Prep News

I know the children will be very excited that Inter-House Cross Country has been rescheduled for this Monday (6 March).  Races begin at 2.15pm and all the children in Years 1 and 2 must bring their PE kit into school on that day in order to take part. Please note once all Pre-Prep races have finished, we shall return to Pre-Prep, so our collection arrangements will be as normal.

Don’t forget we shall be celebrating World Book Day on Friday 10 March – we are really looking forward to seeing the children’s costumes.  It would be lovely if the children could bring along a copy of the book depicting their chosen character.

We are now on countdown until Living Eggs arrive in school on Monday 13 March.  Hopefully in next week’s bulletin we shall be able to give you an update about our little brood!

In Tuesdays assembly the following awards were made:

The Courtesy Cup and Badge was awarded to Omar Suliman (Reception) for his polite manners and for being so kind and gentle with his friends.

Star of the Week went to the following children:

Year 2:  Phoenix Stromgren for growing in confidence in maths – especially when adding two-digit numbers.

Year 1:  Sebastian Baker for making a good effort with his manners and behaviour – well done!

Reception:  Thomas Chivers for trying hard in all his work and for being a good friend in class.

Here’s what we’ve been up to in class …

Kindergarten have enjoyed ‘carrying on camping’ this week. They have made themselves cosy in the sleeping bags and cooked a range of delicacies on the BBQ. They made their own mini sleeping bags, choosing their fabric and then using the stapler to secure the sides. We then took the children’s photos and tucked them in their sleeping bags. The display in the  classroom makes us all smile.  On Shrove Tuesday, the children signed up for their favourite pancake topping and clearly enjoyed the choices they made!  The children have been keen to find out more about the sounds of the jungle after looking at the painting of Rousseau’s tiger and we worked together making rainsticks to help make the camping experience in our safari tent more exciting!  Next week we are looking forward to celebrating World Book Day and are planning a visit to the local bookshop in Hampton as part of our themed activities.

Reception have been very busy this week! On Tuesday the boys enjoyed a Pancake breakfast. The boys showed their best spreading skills to add their toppings to their scrumptious pancakes. The class acted out the story of the Runaway Pancake with puppets and then sequenced pictures from the story and wrote a sentence about their favourite part.

On Wednesday we learnt about St David’s day and how the children of Wales would be celebrating their Patron Saint. We talked about daffodils being a national symbol for Wales and we have observed the daffodils opening in our classroom.

Our topic this week has been learning about our Five Senses. The boys have tested their taste buds with a tasting investigation and enjoyed learning about their other senses through a range of activities.

We enjoyed actively taking part in the Internet Safety Presentation on Thursday. We learnt the importance of always asking an adult before accessing the internet, only ever contacting our real family and friends online and only accessing things we know are safe and allowed to use. If in doubt we will ask an adult.

This week Year 1 have excitedly been observing their bean plants sprouting; the roots are beginning to grow! We continued our work on plants by recording the growth of our beans and learning about wild plants that we can see growing in our gardens.

On Tuesday, we enjoyed Shrove Tuesday by celebrating ‘Pancake Day’. The children wrote a sequenced set of instructions on how to make pancakes, thinking carefully about words such as; first, next, afterwards and finally. We then tested our instruction writing by making pancakes! Later in the week we began to learn about poetry and rhyming words.

In maths, we have been learning about mass and weight. We discussed objects are that heavier or lighter and used a set of scales to weigh objects using unifix cubes. At the end of the week we began to read scales in kg.

In English this week, Year 2 have been busily planning and writing their own books based on Simon Bartram’s ‘Bob Man on the Moon’ stories. We are hoping to read these to Kindergarten as part of our World Book Day celebrations next week.

In maths we have been adding and subtracting using near multiples of 10 (11 and 9). We have also been revising money, including solving money word problems and working out change.

In science we looked at forces we could find around school. In RE we began to look at the religion of Sikhism. This lead to some very interesting discussions about what different people believe about the way they should behave in their lives.

Wishing you a lovely weekend!


headmaster's picture
Tim SmithHeadmaster