Weekly Bulletin 22/03/2019
A message from Mrs Knox
Another busy week at School! I was lucky enough to join Year 9 at the Enterprise Day and would like to commend all of the pupils on their excellent team work and presentations. Days like this really help our students to get a glimpse of the business world and the world of work. Congratulations also to Year 7 on their Charities Showcase, and the Prep school cake sale. Highlights for me have to be the Pre-Prep Spring Concert and Ensembles Concert. There is such talent in this School and I am so thankful to be here! Have a good weekend!
Year 9 Enterprise Day
On Friday the 15th March students in Year 9 took part in an Enterprise day jointly organised with Notre Dame School in Cobham. The students looking very smart in their business clothes worked in groups with the girls from Notre Dame. The presenters from Bright Futures Enterprise Experience lead them in a variety of business themed challenges. They quickly got to know their team members and integrated well into their new roles. One task involved designing and making a roller coaster ride, there were some very imaginative ideas and some great team work went into producing a variety of successful rides. Another activity involved a fast paced business game aimed at developing their enterprising and entrepreneurial skills. At the end of the afternoon each team presented a pitch for their roller coaster rides with Mrs Knox, who made the journey over to Cobham to join us acting as a guest judge.
The Arthur Rogers Award - Malawi
Over the last few years we have developed an international link with, Salima LEA, our partner school in Malawi. This link has been strengthened through a number of teacher exchanges and shared student projects. In addition, our students and teachers have worked hard to raise money for the school to support the rebuilding of onsite teachers' houses. These are in such disrepair that they can no longer keep out the annual rains.
Last year we awarded Kate G and Scarlet M, from the graduating class of 2016, the Arthur Rogers Travel Award. This bursary is designed to support Duke of Kent School alumni to use travel as an educational, horizon broadening experience. They used the award to travel around Malawi, and while there spent time working with Salima LEA. Last week Kate and Scarlet visited Prep School to tell them about their time in Malawi, the people they met and their experiences working in Salima LEA. They showed photographs and films they have made of their trip, recounting their adventures and stories, capturing beautifully the warmth and kindness of the Malawian people, as well as the complex challenges facing the countries students and educators.
The Prep School continue to keep the link with Salima LEA alive and buzzing through classroom activities and fundraising initiatives. Most recently a Year 2 embarked on a letter writing project explaining life at Duke of Kent School to their African peers. We eagerly await their replies!
Year 6 Community Service
This half term, Year 6 have been focusing on Community Service in their Endeavour Award lessons. Some groups have been devising ways to entertain other children in Prep and Pre-prep with a range of break-time sports events, board games and even a treasure hunt. Other groups turned their attention to taking care of our school grounds and the wonderful facilities we have at our disposal, including a litter pick, and reorganising the Science resource trays, much to the delight of Mrs Lock! One intrepid group can be seen here busily buffing the school's fleet of minibuses, thanks to some ingenious sponge-on-a-stick improvisation by Mr Gritton (surely it can only be a matter of time before these are on sale at Halfords!). Bus driver Richard was suitably impressed: "that's a better job than the carwash!" If he was hoping his praise would result in a repeat service, it may take some persuading, though whether they enjoyed it or not, the children made an excellent job of pitching in and, of course, getting as soggy as their sponges.
Mr Wright and Mr Gritton
Pre-Prep Spring Concert
Pre-prep pupils sang out the Spring Term in some style this week, delighting their audience with an eclectic mix of styles and eras! The set list included Year 2's wonderful rendition of 'Ob La Di Ob La Da', Year 1's sunny version of 'Three Little Birds' and Reception and Nursery's exasperated exploration of 'Where Do All the Lost Socks Go?!' Amidst the harmonious group singing, we were also treated to a wonderful selection of small group and solo instrumentals, including Rupert L, Martha GW, Holly B, Lulu B, Harry L all playing piano solos and Herb M amazing us with his rock drumming. The Cellobabies were on fine form, entertaining with three short songs and then Year 2 performed again, this time with a self-composed song about how much they love vegetables (or was it chips?)! The show finished with everyone's favourite Fizzy Legs song and then the Pre-Prep pupils were treated to a surprise performance from the Senior School's House Music winning duo The Boatswain Brothers. Well done to all the pupils for putting on such a fantastic show and to the instrumental teachers Mr Kaye, Miss Macaulay and Mrs Young for all their support.
Reception trip to Bocketts Farm
Reception visited Bocketts Farm this week and had a fantastic time learning about animals and life as a farmer. We started our visit in the huge animal shed and looked at some baby animals including piglets, kids, calves and lambs. All of the children had a go at hand feeding the animals and really enjoyed the experience. There are over 350 sheep at Bocketts Farm and many are due to have their lambs any day soon. 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!
We met Betty a Nanny goat and we watched her being milked and learnt how the milk would then be used for some lambs. Next, we met a tiny mouse, a very soft rabbit and two guinea pigs called Peanut and Pudding. We had to be very careful stroking the animals.
We then went for a walk on the hillside and saw the llamas, alpacas, hens and geese. The tractor ride was a wonderful highlight of the day and we saw the animals on the hillside including a large bull, horses, deer, a donkey and many sheep.
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 ride-ons and soft play. The children behaved well throughout the trip and returned back to school tired but with extra knowledge and enthusiasm to learn about farming and new life!
Thanks to Mrs Harewood who gave up her time to come and speak to senior school last Friday. She gave a very inspirational presentation on her career path from Paediatric Dietician to NHS Manager to Government Lobbyist and Head of a brand new service, “The Lighthouse”. A service, of her own design, changing the way in which some of the most vulnerable victims of crime are handled within the existing justice system. Not only was it inspirational to hear how she managed to change the system but also how her career developed and the choices, decisions and difficult times she had to persevere through to achieve her goals. She is currently working on the next phase - rolling out this service to other parts of Britain. Staff and students alike were really engaged and appreciative of her work and hope to hear more about it in the future.
If any other parents out there feel they could share the inside information about their career (what they do, how they got there, what they’ll do next) in a 20 minute senior assembly then please do contact me directly on firstname.lastname@example.org.
A few match reports from this week
Girls' Hockey: Years 7 & 8 House Hockey
On Monday afternoon, the girls in years 7 and 8 took part in the annual house hockey matches. Throughout the afternoon, we saw some great games including a tense 2-2 draw between Hillary and Armstrong and then a thrilling 3-0 win for Whittle against Chichester. Everyone demonstrated a high level of hockey during their matches and myself and Mr Burwood were very impressed on how well all the girls worked together as teams.
ISA Junior Regional Cross Country Championship
On Wednesday, fourteen Duke of Kent School runners travelled to Oakhyrst Prep School to take part in the regional cross country championship. Approximately 300 pupils took part. With so many runners, the races were split into two for each age group; each race was timed and the top ten runners with the best time qualified for the ISA National Finals. The U9 boys ran first and pushed themselves to their limit showing great determination and willpower. This team consisted of Jude B, Chester S, Charlie L, Monty L, Miles C and Sam R. Our strongest finish in this race was Jude B who finished third and 7th fastest in the U9 category. The U11 girls ran next in a very fast race and although both Ava W and Rose S produced excellent performances they were not quite quick enough to qualify this year. The U11 boys started with Jack B, Rufus B and Luca H in the first race. These boys showed outstanding stamina, team work and speed. Jack B got to the first turn and hill in front with Rufus and Luca on his tail. After the first lap of three, Rufus was leading, Jack was in second and Luca third! These boys were pushed all the way by a strong field but kept working together to produce a brilliant result with Rufus winning, Jack taking second and Luca third. William R, Jasper B and Casper C ran in the second race and produced very good performances to help the U11 boys win their age group. Well done to all who ran!!
Basketball: U16 v. St. Edmund's
The Duke of Kent School Dunkers Basketball team played their 2nd match against St Edmund’s on Tuesday. The game got off to a slow start with the first quarter finishing 3-2 to Duke of Kent School with Oscar L sinking a 3 pointer. Duke of Kent School found their feet with better passing and 3 pointer from Toby H in the second quarter resulting in a bigger lead at half time. After a team talk from Sammy L Duke of Kent School showed their skills in the final two quarters to finish the match 28-16 winners.
Whole School Reminders
Friday 29th March:
End of Term Departure Times:
12:00 - Pre-prep and Prep siblings
12:30 - Senior School
12:45 - After school buses depart
Prep School Reminder
Monday 25th & Tuesday 26th March:
Prep School Production 19:00 - 20:00
Pre-Prep School Reminders:
Thursday 28th March:
Pre-Prep Mothers' Day parties 14:30
Friday 29th March:
Pre-Prep Egg Rolling competition 11:00
Duke of Cat
It has been a purrrfect week at Duke of Kent School.
I’ve had quite the week roaming around school and at times I might have been a little disruptive (sorry Mrs. Vermeulen for distracting Year 8 Science, I was only trying to display my finest hunting prowess). I got involved in Netball with Miss Godfrey but after much deliberation about what to do with the netball I settled for a cuddle instead, an excellent choice I thought. Later in the week I visited Mr. Monk in Maths, I sat front and center and enjoyed learning about compound shapes, fascinating stuff I might add! Lastly, I swanned off down to the Prep School, it’s always so inviting but after hours of learning about Rainforests with Year 3, Tornados in Geography with Year 6 and the Water Cycle in Science with Year 5, it all got a bit much and I had a cat nap on a desk. A rather busy week I thought, so on the subject of cat naps, I think I'll go and find a cosy spot to settle into for the evening.
Thursday evening saw the PA Hall hosting a short concert showcasing the various ensembles that are run in the school. Everyday in the Music Department there is some of sort of group rehearsing somewhere and this was a wonderful opportunity for them all to play and show off the great work that they do.
The school chamber orchestra, run by Mr Kaye, performed first, with some lovely, lyrical playing from all concerned, followed by the school Jazz Band, highlighting James F's excellent clarinet playing. The Junior Ocarinas showed some class with a beautiful rendition of Dvorak's 'New World Symphony' and then the string group, run by Mrs Blunden, played some Hayden, an Irish Jig and then some Star Wars!
Fresh from their amazing performances at GLive both the Chamber Choral Group (Miss Macaulay's Scrunch Bunch) and the Bluegrass Boys were on top form again and the evening was finished in style by Mr Wilson's amazing Wind Band. It was a brilliant evening of music, with a wide range of styles and periods on display - well done to all concerned and a massive thank you to the instrumental teachers involved.
Year 3 Assembly
After our recent trip to Kew Gardens, Year 3 decided it would be the perfect opportunity to showcase our learning and pictures during our class assembly. We were able to share some of the amazing facts we have learnt about the tropical rainforests of the world. We also spoke about what can be done to help save and protect rainforests for future generations to enjoy. We finished with a song about the four different layers of the rainforest and the animals that can be found in each layer. Well done 3N!
Table Tennis Activity
This term, some pupils in Prep School have been participating in a table tennis tournament after school, and this week saw the final round of matches. Just as it seemed that Felix C, undefeated after 10 games, would run away with the crown, Liam upset the apple cart with a last-round victory to force a final match play-off. In the end, Felix prevailed, but he had certainly had his skills - and nerves - put to the test! All games have been played with super sportsmanship and it has been a pleasure to see everyone, from beginners through to more experienced players, learn and improve week on week.
Stars of The Week
Nursery: Obie M for working as part of a team during role-play activities.
Tombi W for a spectacular solo during the Pre-prep Spring Showcase.
Reception: Rufus S-C for showing greater flexibility to changes in routine and increased willingness to engage in new experiences.
Herb M for inspirational drumming at the Spring Concert.
Year 1: Alex G For being so positive and conscientious all the time.
Max M for making an extra effort with his handwriting and his reading.
Year 2: Harry L for a wonderfully positive attitude in maths – you are the times-tables king!
For this week's e-safety bulletin I thought it would be worthwhile reminding people about using Internet connected devices safely. The "Internet of things" and "Internet of toys" is, for many of us, a common feature in our lives. However it is still important to remember the possible risks associated with devices like Alexa, Siri, Hive, and other networked appliances.
It is still unclear exactly how much data is being collected by users, and there are concerns over children being able to access age-inappropriate content and make purchases through devices like smart speakers.
When setting up devices it is worth researching how to set up parental controls, especially safe search, and see if it is possible to review and delete audio files so nothing is stored on the device.
Here is a link for more information:
Thanks for reading!
Pause for Thought
On Wednesday it was the International Day of Happiness and this year's theme is Happier Together, focusing on what we have in common, rather than what divides us.
This seems particularly apt in the current climate (I'm not mentioning the B word!).
This was created in 2012 after the first UN conference on happiness – and the UN General Assembly decided there would be an international day of joy every year on March 20.
It was first celebrated in 2013 and is now recognised by all 193 UN member states.
Happiness is something we all want more of - and it starts from within.
Try smiling for 60 seconds. It releases all those happy endorphins helping you feel more at peace with yourself and the world around you - and it's contagious!
Have a very happy weekend!
With every blessing
Science Competition Results
This week’s science question was “based on Bohr’s model of the atom, how many subatomic particles are there in a molecule of heavy water?”
Heavy water, or deuterium oxide (D2O), is a molecule of water which contains two atoms of heavy hydrogen called deuterium. Deuterium is double the mass of a hydrogen atom due to the presence of an extra neutron in its nucleus. Adding together the number of electrons, protons and neutrons in a D2O molecule comes to 30 subatomic particles in the molecule.
However, I know there is only one question that you want to know the answer to - what will happen if I drink it? On this one occasion I will indulge you with an answer to that question. You have probably already consumed some D2O as it is present in very small quantities in most natural water. You could probably drink a glass or two of D2O without noticing any effect. However, if you continued to drink significant quantities, the hydrogen atoms in your body would be replaced by deuterium atoms affecting vital biological processes and most likely causing them to stop. So for now, I’m sticking with regular H2O.