Headmaster’s Bulletin – Edition 17
A busy week here this week and for the first time ever (I think) I have an extract for the Bulletin that has been penned by pupils:
On Monday 5th February 2018 Nathaniel Taylor Y6, Raphael Taylor Y5, Rory Cooper Y4 and Harrison Gilbert Y3, left Hampton Prep to compete in the National General Knowledge Competition Area Heat at Downsend School. The journey there just increased nerves a notch as we had been waiting, revising and dreaming of this ever since we heard that we had been picked for the team. When we arrived, we were led into a large sports hall with numerous tables around which the teams sat, and some chairs behind them for the audience. We each had a remote control which we used to choose the answers that appeared on a large smartboard at the front. We all felt under a lot of pressure to perform but at the same time proud that we were representing our school. We didn`t start off at all well, getting zero points for the first two questions. Slowly we got used to working as a team and by the 18th question we were in first place. From then on, it was a see-saw for First Place between us and Greenfield School and we were leading going in to the final four questions. Sadly, we slipped on those and Greenfield edged ahead and stayed that way until the end; we were second overall. To give you an idea of how difficult it was, one of the history questions (that we got right!) was exactly the same as a question that was asked later the same day, in ‘University Challenge’! We have much to be proud of. Now we have a bit of a long wait to find out whether we have qualified for the next round, as one of the highest finishing second place teams in the Area Heats.
* Nathaniel Taylor and Raphael Taylor.
That event above sounds very nail biting indeed and I am only sorry that I could not attend to witness the thinking going on for myself! Knowledge matters a great deal to us here and I am very glad that some of our number have had theirs tested in this way.
Another large group of boys left from the Prep, along with one from Year 2, for Epsom College on Tuesday, violins and violas in hand, to take part in their annual Prep Schools’ Strings Day. This is a musical event that we have been going to for a good long while now. It is always very useful for our boys to play their musical instruments with other young performers and have their current skill level tested against that of budding musicians from other schools.
Cakes and life lessons aplenty were today’s feature. Year 4 held their Cake Sale at morning break, raising nearly £120 for the Senahasa Trust in Sri Lanka and Planting Promise in Sierra Leone. The boys in 5C and Mr Chilcott presented a magnificent assembly at the start of the day, concluding our exploration of the theme ‘Breaking the Rules’. There was some gentle teasing and ribbing of Mr Chilcott himself from the boys in his Form – amazing how multiple flamboyantly turned, rather fashionable scarves and multiple pairs of designer specs can result in quite such a large number of uncannily close impersonations from all of them – but they also left us with one very important message. It was tremendous fun for the audience to hear the boys disclose who had broken the rules at home, and when. Plenty of mums and dads present this morning were squirming in their seats somewhat, with all of us chuckling heartily however, as their sons divulged some very entertaining home truths about their own parents. We accepted them all in the spirit the boys offered them of course…and what about that message? Well, we most definitely left assembly with an even clearer understanding that at the end of the day, personal pretensions aside, we are all only human after all.
The final week of this half term has been just as busy as the previous four. All of the boys in Year 4 played against Newland House on Tuesday in what were bitterly cold conditions and I was mightily impressed with the way all the boys approached the games and put their best foot forward.
The hardest skill to execute in such cold conditions is passing and catching. However, the A team showed that their handling skills are drastically improving and you would never have known how cold it was based on their accuracy and consistency.
However, it is their tackling that they need to work on. They are effective in stopping the attacker from advancing but getting him to the ground is proving a little more difficult. When they don’t get the attacker to the ground he is able to off-load the ball and so we are having to make twice as many tackles as is necessary. It’s all part of their learning process and no doubt they will continue to progress after half term. On the day, three of the four teams won and the D team in particular displayed some great attacking flair, it was a great way to finish the half term for the U9 boys.
On Wednesday the U11s and the U10s put out two teams each against Claremont Fan Court School. Both teams in each year groups recorded comprehensive wins and in all honesty there was a rather large gulf in the standard between the two schools. However, what was really pleasing to see was how respectful our boys were to the opposition and at no point did they appear boastful or tease anyone. I believe sport is a fantastic way to develop these kinds of attitudes and values and It was great to see our boys displaying them in such a fantastic way this week.
It has been a tough term in many ways but all the boys have responded very well and worked extremely hard. Everyone deserves a rest and I look forward to seeing you all next half term for another busy and exciting chapter to our sporting year.
A vast array of delicious treats were on display for the Year 4 cake sale during this mornings break time, they raised a total of £120 for their chosen charities Senahasa Trust and Planting Promise. Well done!
In our assemblies, we have marked 100 years since women in the UK first got the right to vote. Of course, this did not come about without a struggle and many women campaigned incredibly hard to make this happen. To mark this important occasion, we have taken a look back at the achievements of some women who have well and truly left their mark on history through the amazing things that they have done – some even ‘breaking the rules’ to make this happen. Please do ask your child if they can remember and talk about some of the important figures we looked at together.
Discussions led on to Florence Nightingale’s achievements, all quite timely ahead of Year 2’s visit to the Florence Nightingale Museum! Miss Goscomb will add a little more about the outing below. Florence was, of course, a pioneer of her time and a true hero who dedicated her life in helping others. Her tenacity and ‘breaking of rules’ paid off and today we can be thankful to her for transforming healthcare all over the world.
At Monday’s assembly, we were excited to celebrate the fact that Izzy Gray (Year 2) recently received a Blue Peter Badge. Izzy made a magnificent 3-D Christmas tree cake (inspired by her success at the Hampton Pre-Prep and Prep Christmas Fair, no less) that she photographed and then sent off to the BBC, together with a letter of explanation. After a short wait, Izzy received a congratulatory letter, a card allowing her access into sorts of wonderful tourist attractions and exhibitions and, of course, the much-coveted Blue Peter. Very well done, Izzy – an inspiration to us all!
Today in assembly, the Courtesy Cup and Badge were Izzy Gray (Year 2) who was chosen by Miss Goscomb for having exemplary manners at all times and for always trying her best.
and Stars of the Week to the following pupils:
Year 2: James Nunn for always working incredibly hard and for being a brilliant ambassador for the School at Epsom College on Tuesday at the musical Strings Day.
Year 1: Finlay Timba for fantastic progress in reading.
Reception: Robert Wijnand for super number work using money.
Here’s what we’ve been up to in class …
What an end to what has been a very busy half term in Kindergarten. We are completely spaced out with all the facts and activities that we have covered this week, but we hope the children have enjoyed the space theme as much as the teachers have!
To finish our topic, we have focused our attention on the story ‘Whatever Next ‘by Jill Murphy. We have had many discussions about what we would pack and take to the moon. We thought of things for Teddy to pack in his rucksack to take on his trip. We then found and packed an apple, a bottle of water, a cup, a book, a picnic rug, a tiny teddy, a torch and a book for Teddy to pack. Before Teddy packed the items we played, a game called ‘Kim’s game’. We had such good memories that we guessed correctly each time one of Teddy’s things were missing!
Using playdough, we made our own aliens with pipe cleaners, wiggle eyes, feathers, pompoms and coloured matchsticks to accessorise and make our aliens look unique! We then thought of a name for our alien before taking a picture of them. Using paint and cotton buds, we painted pictures of aliens from the story ‘Alien loves Underpants’. We experimented with mixing the colours to make lots more colours. Finally, the highlight of the week was when Mrs Timba made us our very own green alien slime. We had so much fun stretching, pulling and squishing the slime.
After half term Kindergarten will be celebrating Shrove Tuesday and Chinese New Year.
Our week in Reception has been rather ‘roartastic’! We focused our learning around the subject dinosaurs, reading information and learning dinosaur facts. We read a variety of ‘Harry and a bucket full’ stories and used these to inspire our writing. We have been digging for fossils in kinetic sand excavating for bones. We have created some fantastic ‘dotty dinosaurs’ using printing techniques. In mathematics, we have been learning all about money – recognising a variety of coins and paying for items in our play shop. We wish you all a fabulous half term!
Year 1 have been counting in 2s, 5s and 10s this week in maths. We have been using the 100 square to look at the patterns and learnt about things you can count in groups.
In English, we read the story ‘Don’t Let the Pigeon Stay Up Late!’ and Year 1 enjoyed listening to all the pigeon’s bedtime excuses; we then wrote our own excuses as to why we should stay up late. We learnt that shouting words can be written using capital letters and wrote shouting sentences using ‘because’ to extend our writing.
In topic, we enjoyed learning more about climates around the world, we talked about countries near the equator and those close to the northern and southern hemisphere. We watched a clip exploring life in Australia and how it is very different from our own.
In maths this week Year 2 have been learning all about mass. This has involved measuring in grams and kilograms, converting between the two units of measure and solving mass related problems.
In English, we heard the story of ‘Bob Man on the Moon’ by Simon Bartram. We had to think about the things Bob might need to know before starting his new job as the cleaner on the moon and what he should take with him in his rocket. On Thursday, we wrote diary entries pretending to be Bob writing about his first day in his new job.
The highlight of the week was going to the Florence Nightingale Museum on Wednesday as part of our topic work. We had a wonderful day learning all about Florence’s life, the changes she made to hospitals and the legacy she left behind. The children were a pleasure to take on the trip; they were engaged, polite and had impeccable manners throughout the day. As ever we are extremely grateful to the parents who came with us – thank you!
Please remember that on Thursday 8 March the children will be celebrating World Book Day and will need to come dressed as their favourite book character on that day.
Have a lovely half term break.