Headmaster’s Bulletin – Edition 28

This Week

Dear Parents,

Nothing good comes cheaply or indeed for free

Not my words, these are in fact the wise words of a Prep parent with whom I met this week and I admire the sentiment inherent in them very much. We were discussing the benefits of hard work, amongst other matters; we also found ourselves jointly considering the lasting value of where learning resides in a child, irrespective of the opportunities or enterprise that child might have been exposed to. This discussion subsequently led me to reflect further upon the value of experiences per se, as of course so many of our boys have been off site either for the entire week (Years 5 and 6) or on various days with trips into London (Years 3 and 4). I have been speaking to my colleagues running the residential trips on a daily basis and it has been terrific to hear how hard the boys have been working this week in either Wiltshire or Wales to overcome their fears and to meet a whole host of new challenges head on. It has been particularly rewarding to hear how well the boys have been trying to get on with one another, in order to make sure the entire experience was enjoyable for everyone in the group. I am looking forward to hearing more from the boys themselves next week.

I was lucky enough to accompany Years 3 and 4 to London Zoo on Monday where we all very much enjoyed a day out staring at animals, some of whom even stared back. There were two different workshops, one for Year 3 on the Living Rainforest and one for Year 4 on teeth and eating and all pupils enjoyed those a great deal. I went around with Year 4 pupils for most of the day and I was very impressed with the knowledge they already have at their fingertips regarding who eats whom in the animal kingdom, and the sorts of teeth needed to do so! Year 3 then enjoyed a day out at Kew Gardens on Wednesday, exploring the world of horticulture and Year 4 developed their cultural awareness with a trip to the National Portrait Gallery on Thursday. Year 4 were particularly enthusiastic about the paintings they studied I am told. The two most popular works were of Florence Nightingale during the Crimean War and Edwin Landseer sculpting the lions which are in Trafalgar Square.

With numbers of pupils off site it has been an excellent week for the boys and girls in Year 2 to spend more time with us at the Prep. I had a very jolly lunch on Tuesday, sitting in amongst the Year 2 pupils. They had spent the morning in the company of a number of us based at the Prep, ahead of their move to Year 3 in September. It will be sad to say goodbye to our girls of course but they were tremendously excited to tell me (again!) about their next schools and how much they are looking forward to starting there. I have very much enjoyed gazing upon the Pre-Prep pupils’ art works as they were being assembled in readiness for their Art exhibition, which took place this afternoon. It was also excellent to watch the Pre-Prep compete so cheerfully in their Sports Day today too.

The coming weeks continue in a similar vein and the calendar features a number of events at which we will all enjoy seeing you, I hope? Do please check what is going on as we enter this busy end of year period. The Hampton Prep Proms are next week (how are the decorated hats coming along??), the Prep Sports Day takes place the following week and the Year 3 and 4 Production is the week after that. Add in the Prep Art Exhibition, the charity fun day to farewell Mr Richards and a number of Parents’ Meetings and we have a highly charged few weeks to look forward to!

Finally, it would seem there are some changes to announce within the HPPPA team.  After two years of extremely dedicated service, your two Co-Chairs Mrs Searancke and Dr Khan together with Mrs Keen (Procurement Lead), Mrs Wadhwani (Treasurer), Mrs Taylor (Class Rep Co-ordinator) and Mrs Patel (Events Lead) will all be relinquishing their roles at the end of this term, passing on the baton to a new generation of willing parents. This team has done a fantastic job in supporting the school, organising numerous successful events to raise money both for the school and our charities, whilst helping nurture and promote the sense of community among parents. This has been achieved whilst juggling the demands of full time jobs and children – no pressure on the next team then!

I am delighted to say that Dr Khan and Mrs Searancke have been thoughtful enough to find their replacements, ensuring the HPPPA remains in safe hands over the coming months. Mrs Hynes and Mrs McGuire are Year 3 parents who have kindly agreed to take on the challenge of Co-Chairs from September. I am told they are currently busy getting up to speed on the roles to ensure a seamless handover but I understand top of their list is recruiting new members to the team. No doubt there will be more to follow on this but if you ever have fancied the idea of getting more involved with the HPPPA, whether in a formal role or just helping out at certain events, then please do not be shy in coming forward.  Mrs McGuire and Mrs Hynes can be reached on, thehpppa@gmail.com if you would like to enquire about any of the open roles or just make yourself known as an extra pair of hands.

Have a great weekend,

Tim Smith

Headmaster

Prep News

What a week!

On Monday our Years 5 & 6 departed School early doors, off on their residential trips. We have had daily updates on their various excursions and hope you have seen our Twitter updates for some fantastic photos! We look forward to hearing all about it when they return to school. Also on Monday years 3 and 4 had a jolly fun day out at ZSL London Zoo, thus leaving the school empty! Here are a few pictures from the day:

 

Years 3 and 4 were lucky enough to get two trips this week, the second for year 3 on Wednesday to Kew Gardens.:

Year 4 had their second trip on Thursday to the National Portrait Gallery:

 

 

Hopefully everyone has a restful weekend and we look forward to having a full school again next week!

Pre-Prep News

Thank you so much for your support at Sports Day this morning and phew what a relief the weather was on our side!  We feel the children showed tremendous sportsmanship and teamwork during the races, and must be commended for their efforts.  It was so lovely to see everyone enjoying their picnics after the event too!

We hope you managed to visit the Art Exhibition in the James Hall.  We are hugely indebted to Mrs Howell for her hard work in making the exhibition today possible and indeed during the year when she works tirelessly on our behalf.

The early part of the week saw the children ‘moving up’ to their next class, meeting their next Class Teacher and generally getting a feel for the year ahead.  We were pleased that a number of parents took up our offer to visit the classrooms at the end of the day.  Please don’t worry if you were unable to make it on this occasion as there will be a chance to pop along to your child’s next class on Monday 2 July when you are here for the termly Parents’ Visit.

In assembly this week, we were delighted to hear that Thomas Chivers (Year 1) completed his first junior park run and did really well – it’s a 2km course in Bushy Park and his time was 13mins 25seconds. Well done, Thomas!  Our congratulations also go to Eddie White (Year 1) for achieving his Level 1 Swim England Award.  Finally, we were thrilled to see a photograph of the ‘bug hotel’ that Sebastian Baker (Year 2) constructed in his garden at home.  He reports that woodlice and several snails have already moved in!

Year 2 will be holding a Cake Sale next Tuesday (12 June) after school and have been busy creating posters to advertise the event.  During Monday’s assembly, they will be presenting a Powerpoint that they have created to explain a little more about their chosen charity.

The Courtesy Cup and Badge were awarded to Rapha Kothakota (Reception). He was chosen by Miss Goscomb for always being so polite and friendly; he always says good morning and asks her how her day is when they meet up in the playground at breaktime.  Well done, Rapha!

and Stars of the Week  went to the following pupils:

Year 2: Aarav Tegginamath achieved 2 stars for completing a detailed book review for every book that he has read this year – well done!

Year 1: Theo Heath achieved 2 stars and was chosen by Mrs Baldwin for always playing his part well in music and listening attentively.

Reception:  Rishi Schneider achieved 2 stars for his fantastic independent writing about Sports Day.

Here is what we have been up to in class ….

This week Kindergarten have been looking at transport and journeys. We thought about and discussed all the different ways we travel, sharing personal experiences of journeys to places visited with our families. We found many ways of travelling, including by hot air balloon! The children have been playing in our travel agent and booking some fantastic sounding trips around the world.

Keyan brought in his butterflies from home to be released; he has had them from caterpillars. We sat in a circle using our quietest voices as Keyan unzipped the lid. Mrs Tidy had to tickle a few to ‘fly the nest’ as they were very comfortable in there.  We waited patiently as they took flight and waved goodbye to each one. We talked about how they will now lay eggs and the lifecycle will start all over again. Thank you Keyan for sharing this experience with us. We are hoping to have another delivery of caterpillars so we can watch them grow. Fingers crossed that we get to see them hatch from their chrysalis this time!

We have practised our races this week and the children concentrated on the different things that they needed to do in order to complete the race. Well done to Kindergarten on their great running and teamwork in our sports day today!

Next week we continue to look at journeys and transport and focus on the story ‘Mr Gumpy’s Outing’.

This week Reception class have been busy preparing for Sports Day. The children have impressed us with their good sportsmanship and their determination. We have talked about trying your best and the importance of exercising for good health.  In mathematics, we have been learning about doubling, and using this knowledge to help us write simple number sentences.  In literacy, we have written about our favourite Sports Day races and the children have enjoyed two Supersonic Phonic sessions. In these sessions, the children work together as a group to read the same text.  They take it in turns to read aloud and then the session culminates in an opportunity to practise writing on whiteboards.  We have also enjoyed looking at the artwork of Alexander Calder this week. We talked about the shapes and colours he liked to use in his work, and his interest in movement. We designed and made our own mobiles as inspired by Calder and have loved watching them slowly turn round in the classroom.

This week Year 1 have been writing animal facts during English this week. We read the books ‘Ice Bears’ and ‘Dancing Tiger’, discussing the characteristics of the animals and then writing facts on polar bears and tigers. We thought carefully about putting a capital letter and full stop in the correct place and illustrated our facts with animal drawings.

In maths, we revisited weight, thinking carefully about the units of measurement we use and began to use problem solving techniques in order to make the scales balance.

Year 1 enjoyed ‘moving up’ morning to Year 2 on Tuesday. The children are now thoroughly excited about their transition in September and after their ‘Year 2 Treasure Hunt’ are now completely familiarised with the Year 2 classroom!

Year 2 have been learning how to add and subtract using partitioning, this has included solving addition and subtraction word problems.

In English, we have focused on contractions in our spelling work – we have had to think carefully about where the apostrophe goes when joining two words together. We also read an explanation text about how rainbows are formed and used this to answer questions as well as learning new information.

Our science lesson was busy this week! We began our work on ‘Plants’ by trying to guess which seeds different plants came from. This was hard as the seeds looked nothing like the plants! We then learned about how seeds travel from one place to another, before making and testing our own helicopter seeds.

In topic, we learned about endangered rainforest animals and what is causing some animals to become extinct. Next week, we begin making our rainforest dioramas – don’t forget to bring in your shoebox if you haven’t already!

On Tuesday, the children were very excited to spend the morning at Prep, meeting different teachers and doing some fun activities. We have begun some work on what the word ‘transition’ means during our life skills lessons and have started to think about how exciting, but also a little scary, it will be to leave Pre-Prep at the end of this term.