It has been super watching the pupils work with our Willow Artists in Residence this week as, together, we created a herd of deer. The pupils engaged brilliantly with the activity and, right from Nursery to Year 10, enjoyed the calming nature of the weaving. They will look fabulous when installed on the lawn next week. Thank you so much to PADoK for having funded this for the School. I must congratulate Year 9 and teachers on the resilience and positivity shown on their Duke of Edinburgh hike today in challenging conditions! I am sure there will be many stories to share this evening. Happy Father’s Day to all the Dads on Sunday. Have a lovely weekend.
This week Duke of Kent School has been getting involved with Refugee Week 2021. Over the week a number of teachers have donated a small part of their lesson time to explore some of the key themes arising from the world's refugee crisis in the context of their subject.
Geography pupils considered the journeys of Rohingya Muslims escaping genocide in Myanmar. The English Department read Benjamin Zephania’s ‘Refugee Boy’, responding with creative writing, while Year 4 explored the plight of unaccompanied refugee children through Onjali Rauf’s book ‘Boy at the Back of the Class’. Older pupils made the connection between Hermia, from Shakespeare’s Midsummer Night’s Dream, and contemporary refugees. The Drama and Music Departments used ‘hot seating’ techniques and listened to pieces composed in refugee camps to encourage empathy and understanding. In History students explored refugees past and present, looking at England’s first refugees, the Huguenots, and the use of slavery in the British colonies, introducing the notion of enforced refugeehood and the Science Department discussed the contributions of Albert Einstein, a refugee from Nazi Germany, whose scientific achievements sit alongside the tireless efforts he made to secure safe passage to the US for Jews fleeing Nazi Germany.
We rounded the week off with a virtual assembly from Percy and Naqueeb, 2 refugees who work with Community Interest Company, The Launchpad Collective (TLC). Naqueeb recently spoke at the G7 Youth Summit and won a gold award for his volunteering work. They shared their difficult stories with the Senior School who then had the opportunity to ask questions to develop their understanding of this emotionally complex subject.
I have been struck by the understanding and empathic maturity that pupils have demonstrated in response to the stories and themes they have explored through the week. The theme for RW2021 is a quote taken from Martin Luther King’s famous ‘I have a dream’ speech, ‘we can not walk alone’. This has certainly been reflected in the positive words and actions of our School community this week.
The Lady of Shalott
Year 6 enjoyed a short but very fruitful outing this week, venturing to ancient woodland in Ewhurst, where a meandering stream set the scene for our first class reading of The Lady of Shalott. Dappled sunlight and shimmering water provided the perfect backdrop for the pupils to hear of the Lady's miserable imprisonment, the cruel curse under which she lived and her longing for love and freedom. The children gave some super thoughts about the poem, and ultimately agreed that despite its threads of mystery, Arthurian adventure and fleeting romance, it remains predominantly a tale of tragedy. Despite the sobering subject, the children loved having a chance to go on a trip and have spent the rest of the week delving deeper into Tennyson's use of language and imagery.
It was fantastic this week having the Willow Twisters for 3 days of workshops for the whole School. Our Artists in Residence have brought metal frames and bundles of willow, which the children have transformed into a heard of beautiful deer. Giving the opportunity for the pupils and staff alike, to get outside connecting with nature through this tactile and creative experience. It was lovely to see the children from nursery up through senior school engaging and enjoying working with their hands.
To see more pictures and read more about the day please click the link below:
The Senior School hoodies have been redesigned by members of the School Council and the finished product can be seen below. They have done a fantastic job at putting this design together and now finally getting to see the finished product.
This new hoodie will be available to pre-order from Stevenson's from today on their website: https://www.stevensons.co.uk/. There is also the option to have your child's initials printed onto the front of the hoodie for a slight additional cost, something we would advise to avoid mixing up tops with other pupils. This hoodie is not an essential item of School uniform, so there is no expectation for pupils to have it.
If you wish to see the sample, please pop into the Main Office to see me and have a look at the new hoodie.
Prep and Pre-prep School News
The Sustainability Committee met this week to finalise their choice of questions for their upcoming interview with Mrs Knox and Mrs Green. They are very much looking forward to asking their carefully composed questions next week! Our Prep School Charity Committee also met on Friday afternoon to revisit ideas and suggestions made for the end of this term and our new school year in September.
Pre-prep pupils took advantage of the last of the hot weather and sunshine on Wednesday afternoon with our annual 'fun splash' in the playground. Water pistols, buckets and watering cans were just some of the vessels used by adults and children alike. Great fun was certainly had by all!
Year 6 have been investigating nets of tetrahedrons (triangular based pyramids) in Maths. They made nets from scratch before putting four together to make a bigger tetrahedron. Pupils then had to consider which 3D shape would fill the area in the middle of the shape they had created – it was an octahedron! The class were then so inspired they wanted to make one giant pyramid in the same way! There were some excellent teamwork skills on display, with different jobs being undertaken to achieve the shared goal, and the pupils were rightly very proud of their achievement, initiative and effort.
Additionally this week, Reception completed their first crossword, with great success, and Year 5 have been learning where their food comes from by examining food packaging as part of their Geography topic 'Enough for Everyone'.
Values Certificates this week go to:
Effort - Rufus S-C
Stars of the Week
Nursery - Lottie F for progress with independent mark making.
Reception - Willow Bfor wonderful effort in P.E. and in the classroom.
Elsie S for great effort in working on her crossword!
Year 1 - Norah c for enthusiasm and positive attitude.
Year 2 - Sam P-R for a huge effort and improvement in reading - you are beginning to use wonderful expression and use the text’s punctuation to help guide your pace.
Senior School News
Our first week without Year 11 in attendance and, whilst there has still been a huge amount going on, it nonetheless feels strangely quiet! I'm sure all agree when I say we very much look forward to seeing them again soon. Matches have continued in the heat with some outstanding performances, particularly in girls cricket where the teams are going from strength to strength, just in time for our visit from professional female cricketer Fi Morris today (Friday) who will be attending school to talk about her career and work with various pupils. Just as the heavens have opened, today also hosts the Year 9 Bronze Duke of Edinburgh practice expedition with the entire year group navigating themselves around the Surrey Hills. Will there ever be a DofE walk without some kind of adverse weather conditions!? We wish them the best of luck.
Only one commendation awarded this week and that went to Calum McK (Y9) for his fantasticinterpretation of the Year 9 Man vs Food task in English! Calum put a huge amount of research and effort into filming his description of a family meal, with brilliant acting and enthusiasm throughout - Well done Calum!
U12/13 Athletics Competition
Duke of Kent School hosted Belmont in our first athletics meeting for two years. 34 pupils from Years 7 and 8 were very excited to run, jump and throw for the school but were also a little nervous! This was a very friendly fixture with great determination and sportsmanship shown from both schools. With so many of our top athletes injured or ill, many runners were moved up to the faster races and all of them represented the School superbly. After the running events, only two points separated the two schools. Pupils also took part in the shot put, javelin and long jump. Belmont were physically a little stronger in these events and eventually came out on top. All of the athletes that took part should be very proud of themselves and this type of event will hopefully give them greater experience and confidence when entering Regional and National competitions next year. Well done to all who took part!
Girls' Cricket: U15 A v. King Edward's
On Tuesday afternoon the U15 A's played King Edward's. It was an extremely hot day, but that didn't phase the girls, and they were ready and raring to go for their match. We won the toss and King Edward's came into bat. They had some very strong batters and were able to obtain some well deserved 6's and 4's throughout their innings. Zoe L and Izzy B took wickets and Izzy B had a great catch towards the end making sure they didn't gain those pivotal extra runs at the end of the innings.
The girls came into bat next and had a shaky start but soon settled and found their focus and timing for making contact with the ball. Amelie W-B and Zoe L were a strong pair building up a strong total before our final pair. Molly G and Zoe took to the crease knowing they weren't far behind king Edward's and they were so determined to get as many runs as possible. Molly hit a fantastic 6 and between them took some big risks with their runs which paid off. The final score was 254 - 245 to Kind Edward's, it was a great match and both teams were evenly matched. Well done girls.
Girls' Cricket: U15/14 B v. King Edward's
On Tuesday afternoon, the U15/14B girls cricket team travelled to King Edward's. The sun was shining and the team were raring to go! After some brief bowling practice and a good warm up, the girls won the toss and elected to field first. Every member of the team bowled well, with very few wides being bowled throughout the innings. In particular, Iris R and Eva M bowled brilliantly making it hard for the batters to score many runs early on in the innings. There was some excellent fielding on display too with Lucy P and Emily B making some good stops and throw ins for the team. During the 4 overs bowled by Amber C and Imogen C, the team managed to get 3 wickets including 2 run outs and a catch. This put the girls in a good position going into their batting innings, the score to beat was 278 runs.
After a tricky start with a few early wickets, Duke of Kent School settled into the innings and hit multiple boundaries! Some particularly good batting came from Emily B and Imogen C, as both girls hit multiple 4s. After 12 overs, the scores were very close so the final pair, Emma B and Sophie S, had to be careful and tactical in their batting. Emma B, our captain for the match, did an excellent job of communicating with her partner Sophie and as a team they made some great decisions. Emma hit a 6 on the final ball of the match and sealed the win for Duke of Kent School! The final score was 297 runs to 278, a fantastic game and great teamwork displayed throughout the afternoon! Well done girls!
Girls' Cricket: U8/9 v. Dorset House
On Thursday afternoon, Duke of Kent School's U8/9 girls cricket team welcomed Dorset House. Excitingly, Dorset House had two teams, so Duke of Kent School were lucky enough to have an entire afternoon of pairs cricket including two matches! In both matches the girls remained focused in the field and make some good decisions when batting. The team had focused on improving their communication between the wickets and this really helped them gain some key extra runs! There was some particularly accurate bowling from Charlotte C and Jasmine W, with both girls taking wickets for the team! When batting, Holly B and Ruby W played some excellent shots, scoring 4s on multiple occasions. Both games were extremely close but fantastically Duke of Kent School managed to come out on top, narrowly winning both games. More importantly, all the girls worked with enthusiasm and great determination. What a brilliant afternoon of cricket!
Boys' Cricket: U13 Tournament at Belmont
The U13 cricket team took part in the annual Belmont 6-a-side Tournament last Friday. They played 3, won 1 and lost 2, but this did not tell the full story. They played magnificently! They went toe to toe with two of the best cricketing schools in Surrey, losing off the last ball to Parkside by 2 runs, and losing in the last over to Feltonfleet by 1 wicket. Both games we had a chance to win; both teams packed with Surrey players.
We then went on to beat Kingswood House, amassing 80 runs in our 5 overs, an excellent return. The team played as a unit. There was some excellent fielding, bowling and batting. Rufus B led the team with skill and had to retire twice out of his three innings. Luca H, too, thrashed the ball around, ably supported by Harry. They picked up valuable wickets also. Jack B was the best keeper in the competition, George P, Jasper B, and Charlie G, fielded and bowled with great skill. Well done, chaps.
Boys' Cricket: U12 XI v. Box Hill
The U12 XI played against Box Hill on Wednesday, having won the toss captain Harry F decided to bat first. Duke of Kent School got off to a slow start while batting but did not give their wickets away. The runs started to flow once Harry F came to the crease with him scoring 42 runs off just 21 balls, a great captain's innings which was fantastic to watch. Duke of Kent School ended the innings with a score of 116. The second innings started with a wicket on the first ball, a great bit of bowling by Jack D. Overall, the Duke of Kent School bowling and fielding performance was very good, Josh W-D bowled 2 great overs and very nearly had a well-deserved hattrick, Tiago W also had a great performance as wicketkeeper with 3 catches behind the stumps. It was very closely contested game and Box Hill were bowled all out for 106. Well Played to all the players involved, it was great to see some great team work throughout.
Boys' Cricket: U11 v. Dorset House
After a fantastic team performance, the U11's pulled off their third victory in a row, in a pulsating contest against Dorset House. As you can see from the grubby knees, this was a determined and resolute display in field from all the boys, who all battled to defend every run. This was our most complete batting performance with all the boys playing a part in our impressive total of 139 off 20 overs. Special mention to Felix C, whose impressive 35 not out anchored our innings and help guide us to victory. All the bowlers then kept their nerve and did well against a forceful counterattack by some big hitting opposition, who took the game to the final over. With the best team spirit in the land, it really has been a pleasure to see this 'barmy army' march on.
This week the House Chess competitions began in the Prep School. There is a competition for beginners and one at a more advanced level to give everyone who would like to enter the opportunity to enjoy playing chess. All of the 30 students who entered have earned 3 House points and will play two matches in the pool rounds before the finals begin. The Senior Chess competition will begin next week.
Armstrong has snuck past Chichester into 3rd place, with only 3 weeks to go until the final results are decided! Hillary has collected the most stars and Prep School Values Awards which has helped them maintain their lead over Whittle. You can see the up to date leaderboards by following this link- House Leaderboards.
Last week was Empathy Day and this week in School we have been learning and promoting understanding during Refugee Week, something that encourages pupils to empathise.
Empathy is the quality that allows us to attempt understanding and imagine what an experience must be like for someone by drawing on our own feelings. It requires investing in that person’s emotion rather than trying to solve or lessen the emotion as sympathy tends to.
Empathy is about hearing and relating to someone rather than mollify them with platitudes.
When we are at a point in life that involves struggle and in need of empathy from others, it is sometimes difficult to remember to empathise; not only with others but also ourselves. It is even more important then to both display and receive empathy - the creation of human relating. We don’t have to walk in someone else's shoes or carry them; we can just walk beside them and listen.
It’s beneficial to take stock of our empathy supplies and consider if and how we can replenish them (self-care). Also, to consider if we could empathise more. Can you make an empathy resolution as some of the Year 9’s did with me? This is a recognition and affirmation of what you’d like to work on to improve your empathy ability.
Users can experience a variety of creative worlds and stories.
You can play together with your child and take an interest in what they are playing.
It can improve reflexes and strategic thinking.
Motion gaming can get you moving.
Some games have an educational element.
However, there are also risks. Many video game consoles, (as well as mobile devices), have internet connectivity enabling players to play games online with others.Ask About Games have a selection of Parent Guides on popular games so you can gain a quick understanding of the game.
The musical is a madcap, funny and hugely fun piece set in a crumbling old school, in which the pupils decide to put on their own musical in order to raise funds to stop the school going bust! It has great music, lots of parts and is open to any pupil from Years 7 - 11. Please contact Mr Rye if you have any queries.
As you will have seen DoKFest has been postponed to next September 11th. It will most certainly still be a celebration of the Performing Arts in the school, so all those pupils who were hoping to perform should still consider themselves booked for the gig!
A Message from the School Nurses
The step 4 delay to 19th July though frustrating, is also welcome, given the circumstances of rising infection rates and concerns regarding the Delta Variant. I would encourage all adults to book their Covid-19 Vaccinations as soon as invited. At the risk of being repetitive, please do ensure your Senior School child is performing their twice weekly asymptomatic Lateral Flow Test. I'd dearly love to get us to the end of the School year without having to isolate any of our School bubbles; that would be a tremendous achievement, and the testing is a huge part of making sure that happens.
In the news this week we are also hearing that the Delta variant is linked with symptoms of headache, sore throat and runny nose as well as fever. Clearly many people suffer these symptoms without having Covid-19 (especially during hayfever season!) so it's tricky working out who should be PCR tested (government policy hasn't yet changed from the original 3 symptoms of fever, cough and loss/change of smell/taste). I can only suggest that if you're not sure, do please book a PCR test for reassurance. We are finding there are tests available in Ewhurst currently, which give a very rapid turnaround for results. (Often less than 24 hours).
Last week I mentioned the St Johns Ambulance first aid app and "never knowing when you might need it". Subsequently, Christian Erikson suffered a cardiac arrest during the Euro 2020 Match Denmark v Finland. Prompt CPR followed by defibrillation on the pitch, saved his life. His teammates also showed great presence of mind despite the undoubtable distress they must have been experiencing, to shield him from public view as he was being resuscitated. Year 9 have had training from me this week on CPR and Year 10 will have this also in a couple of weeks. CPR is such a valuable life skill. If you have time to watch this short video showing how to administer CPR safely during the Covid epidemic, I would encourage you all to watch and learn: https://youtu.be/3MY0sRYfsRA
We are fortunate at School to have our very own Defibrillator (situated in Front Office) - these machines are so easy to use - they literally talk you through the process as soon as you open them up - never be afraid to give lifesaving a go! This video from St Johns Ambulance talks through how to use an AED (automatic external defibrillator) https://youtu.be/UFvL7wTFzl0
Have a lovely weekend and fingers crossed for the football tonight - come on England!
The School Nurses
This year, Duke of Kent School is delighted to be sponsoring the Ewhurst Carnival on Saturday 7th August. It is sure to be a fun packed day for all the family.
The day will include Vintage Vehicles, Fun Dog Show, Food stalls, Children's rides, Open Mic, Craft stalls, The Fabulous Nobodies + support and so much more.
Don't miss out on this wonderful village fund-raising event.
Friday was a warm day and we were glad to be out early in the cool air before the heat descended.
We had a good turn out with some new faces, particularly popular was a very cute 10 week old puppy in a backpack, enjoying a bit of socialisation with the older dogs. We had an easy stroll to the viewpoint and then headed home. The next PADoK walk will be on Friday 25th June, 08.30 at Car Park 3, Pitch Hill.
A new title has been chosen for the PADoK Book Club and we really hope you enjoy what appears to be an exciting read! We are hoping to meet in person for the next PADOK book club on Thursday 1st July at 8:00pm, location to be confirmed. We would love to see you then to discuss “Restless” by William Boyd.
Restless is a brilliant espionage book and a vivid portrait of the life of a female spy. Full of tension and drama, and based on a remarkable chapter of Anglo-American history, this is fiction at its finest.
School Social Media
At Duke of Kent School we have three social media platforms;Instagram (dukeofkentschool), Twitter(@DoKSchool)and Facebook(Duke of Kent School).
Our Twitter and Facebook accounts are public however, our Instagram account is private to keep it strictly for the Duke of Kent School community only. To follow the School Instagram account you will need to request to follow the account.
We recommend following all three accounts to receive push notifications with news, updates, educational articles, interactions with other schools, communities and public figures.
Good luck to our brave and stoic Year 9 pupils who are heading out on their Bronze @DofE Practice Expedition. It's pretty wet outside but they are full of enthusiasm and are raring to go! #DofE #CountrysideCode #CompeedAtTheReady #TheDoKWay @CompeedUKhttps://t.co/P8rRfx0dSc
Our Senior School pupils joined Willow Twisters for their turn at making deer. They have made steady progress throughout the day and our herd of deer are growing! #WillowWeaving #Deer #TheDoKWay #SeniorSchool #Year9 https://t.co/HzPiQL44v9