Weekly Bulletin 16/03/2018
Mother's Day Parties
There was a flurry of creative activity in Pre-Prep last week, as our Mother's Day parties this year fell rather aptly on March 8th - International Women's Day. Pupils had worked wonderfully hard to present their special guests with an array of handmade gifts, cards, posies, tasty treats and heartfelt messages that left very few eyes entirely dry by the end of the celebrations.
Year 2 also took inspiration from Rudyard Kipling's poem 'If' to create their own version for the special women in their lives. Here is a short excerpt from the poem;
If you can raise a smile from us whenever we feel sad,
Or find a way to talk to us, to calm us when we’re mad,
If you know when we’re fibbing or telling bare-faced lies,
Not from what we’ve said, but from the look that’s in our eyes,
Thursday was House Music Finals day, with the whole afternoon being given over to a concert for the solo and ensemble finalists, the House Song competition and a surprise performance from our guest judge Chris Leonard. Chris is an internationally successful songwriter, whose credits are a 'who's who' of pop music; most notably he has written with Ed Sheeran, Shawn Mendes, Paolo Nutini, Cristina Perri, Harry Styles and Shania Twain to name a few. The whole event was a wonderful opportunity for both the Senior and Prep schools to hear some of the school musicians play live, the Houses to sing together with wonderful props, costumes and make up , and a chance for some of the pupils to play in their house bands.
The standard of all the finalists was, yet again, very high this year, with a lovely mix of instruments and singing, and a wide range of genres on display. A huge well done to all those who took part, from the 100+ entries in the first round to the eventual winners (Hillary!).
A visit from Duo Bizart!
On Tuesday we were lucky enough to have a performance and workshop from the Belgian piano act 'Duo Bizart'. Billed as 'unusual, unconventional and bizarre' the act were just that! Comprising of two classical pianists playing one piano they performed a wonderful version of Cinderella and then Sleeping Beauty for the Prep School in the morning, bringing the stories to life with wonderful paintings, lovely story-telling and beautiful piano playing. Then in the afternoon Year 8 and the Year 10 GCSE Art pupils were treated to an exploration of the link between modern art and 20th Century classical music, which really encouraged the children to think about expression, reaction, interpretation and even life!
Reception visit to Bocketts Farm
There was Spring in the air when Reception visited Bocketts Farm this week. Having been looking at the theme of new life in class we had a wonderful time seeing lots of baby animals with their mothers. We started with meeting Shelly a Nanny goat and we watched her being milked and learnt how the milk would then be used for some lambs. Everyone had a go at hand feeding Shelly; she was very hungry! Next, we met a tiny mouse and some fluffy rabbits. We were able to hold a 10 day old chick who was just developing real feathers.
We went on to look at a range of larger animals including cows and calves, sows and piglets, ewes and lambs. All of the children had a go at hand feeding the animals and really enjoyed the experience. We then went for a walk on the hillside and saw the llamas, alpacas, hens and the peacock and peahens. The tractor ride was a wonderful highlight of the day and we saw the animals on the hillside including a large bull, horses, deer and so many sheep. Bocketts Farm are expecting 400 lambs to be born over the next couple of weeks so there were lots of ewes waiting to give birth. The children learnt that they were coloured coded depending on how many lambs they were due to have; some were having three and they were extremely large!
Being in the open air had given us a good appetite and everyone had a lovely packed lunch. After lunch we cheered on the pigs in the pig race and then made the most of sampling the extensive play opportunities including the tree houses, go-karts and bouncy pillows.
The children behaved well throughout the trip and returned back to school tired but with extra knowledge and enthusiasm to learn about spring and new life!
PI Day in the Prep School
The Prep school had a fun morning on Thursday learning about the wonders of Pi and discovering maths all around the school. Starting with an assembly all about in the ins and outs of Pi with its infinite digits followed by a fascinating presentation from Martha McA and Milly B in Year 8 on another infinite number; the golden ratio.
Afterwards the Prep school got into teams made up of pupils from all year groups and went on a maths scavenger hunt around the school. Applying logic and knowledge they've learnt in class to solve riddles and calculations. The students were so enthusiastic about the topic which will pave their way for future learning in the subject. It was a fun filled morning had by all!
School Council Meetings
On Thursday and Friday of last week both the Senior and Pre-Prep/ Prep School Councils became 'interviewers'. As part of their role as School Council Members they were asked to think of some questions for each of the prospective Head candidates. On each of the two days the Councils had about ten minutes with each candidate. They were very professional and listened intently to the answers they were given. Every pupil was able to ask a question in each of the sessions and the questions were pretty challenging! They were then given the opportunity to feedback their thoughts and opinions to one of the School Governors. Their comments were very perceptive and they confidently backed their opinions up with well thought out ideas. They conducted themselves in a very professional manner and are to be congratulated on their focus and commitment to the job. Every candidate said how much they had enjoyed the meeting, and how impressed they were with the pupils on the Council.
Below are some of the comments from the Prep School Council members about their experience.
"Being an interviewer was fun and interesting."
"It was nice because you felt like you were important"
"I really enjoyed it and thought their answers were very good."
"My favourite question was " What subject did you teach?"I liked this because it was interesting to know what they had taught."
Mrs Lock and Mr Wilson
A few match reports from this week
Girls' Football: U13 and U12's v. Belmont
On Wednesday afternoon, thirteen Year 7 and 8 girls headed over to Belmont for their long awaited football match. After months of training on Tuesday evenings, it was time to put the what they had been working on into a game situation.
The first game got underway and it was evident that all players were enjoying the occasion, with great team sprit and sportsmanship between the opposing teams. It was a tight first half, with few chances created and solid defensive performances. It was a similar story in the second half with solid defence from both sides. All the girls put in an incredible effort and managed a 0-0 draw.
The second game was a little more open. Duke of Kent School took the lead with a fine finish from Daisy K after some excellent build up play in midfield. Duke of Kent School continued to create chances and after a flowing passing move, Alice S hit the post. Belmont continued to press and equalised early in the second half. Then with one minute to go, Charlotte W and Issy F linked up well to set up Bella R-B to score the winning goal.
The gils should be incredibly proud of themselves. They have worked so hard at Girl’s Football Club over the past couple of years and they have improved significantly in that time. We hope this is the start of some regular fixtures for girl’s football in the calendar!
Girls' Hockey: Senior House Matches
On Wednesday, the Year 9, 10 and 11 girls met in Ness Hall for the hotly contested house hockey.
First up was Armstrong Vs Chichester and straight away you could sense the competitive natures of all the girls. Being indoors and therefore having the wall as an extra player only seemed to add to the pace and excitement of each game. Jasmine B was absolutely solid in defence for Chichester throughout the afternoon and the other houses had to work very hard to get anything past her. Jas P was a great team member, making some quality passes and creating numerous chances for Armstrong. Izzy P and Blue R for Armstrong and Hilary respectively showed real strength on the ball and made it tough work for anyone to tackle them. For Whittle, Tyla W, Minnie C and Fleur B all seemed to going for the golden stick and they rarely missed a shot on goal or deflection.
The positioning came down to the penultimate game where Armstrong and Whittle met. Both had won their previous two games so it was all to play for. Goals came quickly from Tyla W and Hannah D for both houses and it was very quickly 2-2. All to play for. Armstrong thought they had got a third but it was ruled out as they were outside the D and Whittle made quick advantage of the possession, using pace to get it down the pitch and into the goal; 3-2. The game really was end to end and despite slightly tiring, none of the girls gave up. Whittle snuck in a final goal in the dying minutes to seal the win and finish the tournament in first place. Armstrong came a well deserved second, with Chichester and Hilary filling the 3rd and 4th posts respectively. Well done to all the girls for their effort and energy!Miss Taylor
Whole School Reminders:
Friday 23rd March:
End of Term Departure Times:
12:00 - Pre-prep and Prep siblings
12:30 - Senior School
12:45 - After school buses depart
Friday 23rd March:
Choir trip to Holland departs
Senior School Reminder:
Tuesday 20th March:
Years 7 & 8 to Hampton Court
Prep School Reminder:
Monday 19th and Tuesday 20th March:
Prep School Production - The Coin
Pre-Prep School Reminders:
Thursday 22nd March:
Pre-Prep Spring Concert
Friday 23rd March:
Pre-Prep Egg Rolling competition
Year 2 Home and Away
This week, Year 2 stepped out into the wilds of the Surrey Hills and fell deep into the history and geography of our local area. Having tramped through mud, rain and mist to reach Pitch Hill, visibility of approximately 2m denied us a spectacular view of the surrounding countryside, but with the help of compasses and trundlewheels, we safely navigated and measured our way back to the minibus, without encountering any bears. We then headed into Cranleigh and hunted for a gargoyle hidden inside St Nicolas' Church, which is believed to have inspired Lewis Carroll to create his famous Cheshire Cat. After reading an excerpt from Alice's Adventures in Wonderland, we continued along the High Street and pondered how and why the town centre has changed over the years, noting the disappearance of the railway and the replacement of horses and carts with buses and cars. We considered important buildings and monuments, such as the drinking fountain and war memorial, and discussed the etymology of the village's name, derived from it being a former nesting site of cranes. Although we didn't see any real cranes, we did have fun discovering several painted and sculpted versions dotted around on benches, clocks and rooves. Lastly, there was even time for the all important traffic survey that no local area trip should be without, which will be instrumental in our Numeracy work this week. Throughout the trip, the children made a short documentary, revealing several budding TV presenters of the future. We hope to share the fruits of our efforts at an assembly some time soon.
Pre prep Stars of the Week
Nusery: Teddy S for displaying a kind, thoughtful and patient manner towards his younger peers
Reception: Rupert L for always trying his best in everything and Hope N for setting an example of confident animal handling at Bocketts Farm and encouraging her friends.
Year 1: Henry O'B for great effort in literacy, using time sequencing words and great detail in his descriptive writing.
Year 2: Sam W for listening attentively throughout our class trip, and making more contributions in class with greater confidence.
Recently, you may have heard of "Fortnite", the latest gaming craze to hit the internet. The game itself involves players fighting each other with weapons and building things to be the last one standing, but when it comes to time spent playing the question inevitably comes up: "how long is too long?"
I'm a firm believer in games for leisure, and there is nothing intrinsically wrong in letting people play this game. However, it is important to moderate usage, especially if it starts to impact on their school work and personal lives. Having a set time to play games can establish a routine and limit "binging". You could also use the game as a reward or an opportunity to be involved with your child's hobbies and interests.
It is also important to reinforce standard e-safety rules of not chatting to strangers online, and not giving out person information to other people you play with.
Here is a video on the subject:
Pause for Thought
Well, another busy week for us all here at the Duke of Kent School and we might well be looking forward to a nice relaxing weekend, but if you're Irish or a rugby fan it might well be cause for rejoicing (or commiseration, depending on your leanings!)
This Saturday the Irish (and anyone who needs an excuse!) celebrate St Patricks day. But who was he and why do we remember him hundreds of years after his death?
St Patrick was born in 385 C.E and died, reportedly, on the 17th March 461 C.E. He wasn't Irish, possibly English, and as a child was a slave on a ship to Irish pirates.
He managed to escape and tended sheep from the age of 16-20 on his own in the Irish wilderness.
It is at this time he discovered a love of God and in his isolation would spend many hours and days in prayer. Maewyn Succat - as Patrick was then known, found his way back to England and pursued his calling to Priesthood. In a vision he felt that God was asking him to return to Ireland to live and work among the people and tell them the Good News of Jesus Christ.
He obeyed this calling and returned to Ireland where, in three decades, he established schools, churches, and monasteries from his ministry in the north. Patrick was later appointed as successor to St Palladius, the first bishop of Ireland.
So whatever your reason for celebration this weekend, whether you have an Irish connection or your rugby team are victorious (come on England!) enjoy a well deserved break and have some fun!