Newsletter 1st March 2019

From the Head

I always enjoy showing prospective parents around the school and this week was no exception. On Thursday morning, I set off on my showround as usual and was completely blown away by everything I saw in each classroom, the playground, the PE lessons in the hall and the general conduct and attitude of the children. The standard of work that you will see in your children’s books at Parents’ Evenings in a couple of weeks is excellent and the children were able to articulate the next steps in their learning clearly. Our work on developing resilience across the school is clearly paying off; our Nursery children were able to explain to me and my visitor the definition of resilience and what is looked like for them. They spoke about managing distractions and how they absorb their learning through wonderful creative opportunities to develop in independence and decision making. What a fantastic start to their school life.

Our new building next door is nearing completion and it is very exciting to see how quickly it is progressing each week. I will be showing a virtual tour of the new building and playground extension at our Open Morning tomorrow, so those of you who have volunteered your services as a tour guide will be able to have the first look! I am attaching some images below of what it is going to look like.

It is that time of year when we start to receive secondary school offers. Offers for scholarships and independent school places have now arrived and Year 6 children will be finding out which secondary schools they have been offered this weekend. It has been a long wait for some of them since starting this process; sitting their exams back in September, applying for schools in October and some children having to wait until January to sit exams. Every single child should be so proud of their achievements. They have made me extremely proud; their hard work, diligence, attitude and resilience throughout the whole process has been exemplary and we know that whichever school they choose, they all have very bright futures ahead. Well done to you all.

I hope you have a lovely weekend; I look forward to seeing some of you tomorrow at our Open Morning and some of our Year 6 children on Sunday as they enter their first Lightseekers tournament; good luck to you all!

Kind regards,

Miss Holloway, Headteacher

In my assembly this week, I focused on patience and kindness. I began by allowing the children time to wait. I stood at the front of the hall without speaking for five minutes. The hall was silent, most of the children remained still and calm. I felt the uncertainty in the air and watched as some children began to move a little. I smiled and many children smiled back at me. I then wished them all a good morning and then there came a resounding ‘Good morning Miss McNamara!’. I asked them what was different about the start of assembly and the children confidently told me that it was silent and they all had to wait. We spoke about the feelings we all shared (including me!) as we sat all 200 of us in a silent room not knowing what was going to happen next. It is so important in this busy world that our children are given opportunities to sit in silence and that they practise waiting and being patient. It is also vital that our children learn to sit with uncomfortable feelings and disappointments to learn how to manage them effectively. Following this, I read the story ‘Have you filled a bucket today? A guide to daily happiness for kids.’ by Carol McCloud. The story encourages positive behaviour by using the concrete concept of an 'invisible bucket' that holds your good thoughts and feelings. When you do something kind, you fill someone's bucket; when you do something mean, you dip into someone's bucket and remove some good thoughts and feelings. The children from Reception to Year 6 showed an excellent understanding of this concept, suggesting ways we can fill buckets. I have been thrilled to hear from the children how they have been filling their own bucket and the buckets of their friends and teachers all this week.

A.McNamara (Head of PSHEE)


On Wednesday, Year 6 participated in a football match. The children are really progressing well and played some very entertaining football. With some neat passing and excellent team work, we saw one player score a hat trick during the game. Please find below a video of him scoring a penalty to secure his hat trick. Well done to all the children involved in the game!

On Friday, some Year 5 children travelled to Farringtons to play in a football fixture. An amazing game unfolded, with both sides creating chances throughout the game. Excellent teamwork resulted in St Olave's winning the game 3-2! It was really pleasing to see how much progress Year 5 football team has made. Well done to all the children involved.


This week, we had the pleasure of welcoming our new French Assistante, Alizée Bonnet, who is going to work at St Olave’s until the end of June. Like Alexandra and Charlotte before her, Alizée comes from the University of Angers in France where she is studying for a Master’s in Education. To begin with, she will be working particularly with Year 6 pupils to develop their oral skills and with bilingual children on a specific curriculum but, in time, she will see and work with all the children at St Olave’s. We have no doubt that her presence will greatly enhance French teaching and learning at St Olave’s and that all the children will enjoy having her around.

Year 6

The children have returned from half term with a renewed vigour, we had a glorious Games lesson on Monday afternoon at Footscray Rugby Club in the wonderful warm sunshine. The children enjoyed performing the New Zealand Haka and playing football, hockey or tag rugby.

On Tuesday, we were treated to the children sharing their half term holiday homework. We had a fantastic discussion about all the different types of art that they had chosen to share with us, the artists ranged from Shimhaq to Picasso. The most popular artist was Vincent Van Gogh with The Starry Night, we even had a sculpture - The Tree of Life by four artists in Mozambique. It was extremely interesting to hear the reasons why the children liked the piece of art and the vocabulary they used to describe the art and their reasons was very impressive.

In English this week, we began by looking at The Mermaid poem by Alfred Lord Tennyson in comprehension. The children enjoyed deciphering the language used and discussing the imagery after reading the poem. We are also continuing with our Power of Reading text ‘Varmints’, the children performed their powerful poems, which came alive when they performed them. Have a look at our display:

In Maths this week, we reminded ourselves about how to add and subtract fractions and then we moved onto subtracting fractions which involved using one of the wholes to create a new mixed number fraction so they could complete the calculation e.g.

The children worked extremely hard and achieved fantastically! They experienced the learning pit but all came out feeling successful - well done Year 6!

6M have also been busy practicing hard for their class assembly - we look forward to seeing you next week on Wednesday 6th March. We hope you have a lovely weekend.

Year 5

In English, we have been using our knowledge of bullet points and skim and scan techniques to collate information for our non-fiction piece of writing about Norwich. We discovered some fascinating facts about the city and its rich history. The children have collated this information under appropriate subtitles to help them plan their non-fiction piece in a clear and organised manner.

During our IPC lesson, the children began their DT project. This week they were challenged to create a wooden cube. All of the children demonstrated excellent teamwork skills during this session. The first steps included working with a partner to measure the wooden rod at 6 cm intervals, then saw this accurately (and safely!) in order to use a glue gun to connect the wooden rods together. We were so impressed with the childrens’ DT skills and look forward to applying these in our next lessons.

In Maths, we have started our new topic, ‘Perimeter and Area’. We revised what ‘perimeter’ means, imagining it as a field with a fence around the outside. We then looked at ways we could find missing measurements of a side. The children realised that many of these questions involved multiple steps and they created their own success criteria to follow. These included ensuring that they wrote the units of measurement in their answers and to show every step of their working out clearly and methodically.

We have spoken about our trip to the Isle of Wight next week and we can’t wait! We have lots to look forward too! Follow our adventures on our Twitter page.

Year 4

Spring has definitely been in the air this week to welcome us back to school. As well as spring, we have welcomed George into Year 4, the children have all made him feel very welcome and we hope he enjoyed his time with us.

We have enjoyed reading through the fabulous home learning and finding out lots of new things about a wide variety of Pharaohs. It was clear just how much effort some of the children had put into their completing their home learning, so thank you for your support.

In English, we have carried on with our text, Stories of a Sun King. Lil’s grandad has taken poorly with a slightly mysterious fever, at the same time as receiving an ancient Egyptian artefact through the post which is reportedly cursed! Linking to our IPC work, we have researched and created menus for an Ancient Egyptian feast hosted by Tutankhamen.

In maths we have been further developing our multiplication skills, using the column method to multiply 2 and 3 digit numbers. The children have grasped this method very well and have been able to apply it in a problem solving and reasoning context. We will be moving into division next!

We had a thoroughly enjoyable games lesson in the sunshine this week. The children enjoyed being able to wear their shorts and run around in the sunshine. We especially enjoyed our rugby inspired dance lessons where we watched, discussed and tried to learn the New Zealand Haka! The children first learned the basic Haka moves before developing their own dance to intimidate! Some of the noises and facial expressions were fantastic!

Year 3

This amazing Spring-like week has seen Year 3 burst into bloom with great writing, the end of our current IPC topic and some challenging maths questions.

We have continued to write stories using our own invented characters. It has been rewarding to see the children use more adventurous vocabulary, a variety of punctuation (including speech marks) and paragraphs to split up their compositions.

In maths, we continued with our study of multiplication and division and pondered over some tricky problems!

We concluded our IPC topic ‘How Humans Work’ this week by looking at the function of our heart and skeleton. The children designed a fair test to discover the effect different types of exercise have on our heart and enjoyed labelling their own bones! Finally we made our own versions of skeletons out of spaghetti, pasta and straws, trying to carefully observe and compare the length of the bones.

Next week we are off to the rainforest as we start our next IPC topic ‘Saving the World’ and on Monday we are visiting Kew Gardens. Please be in school no later than 8:20am as the coach leaves at 8:30am! Children to wear their PE kit (jogging bottoms, jumper and trainers) plus their school coat.

Year 2

It was great to see the children back after half term, full of stories (and even madeleines from France to share!). Many of the children seem to have grown after their week of sunshine and the rest has done them good!

We have been working really hard this week getting our classrooms ready for sharing on Open Morning. The children are so proud to see all of their lovely work on display!

In English, the children wrote postcards to Mr and Mrs Shinyshoes from Claude, reporting on the fun that he was having in the city. The children enjoyed this form of writing and wrote about how Claude had ordered a lovely hot chocolate whilst Sir Bobblysock had a fruit cocktail in the cafe. When you come in for sharing afternoon on Monday, you will be able to read these wonderful postcards! We hope that you can make it as it is an exciting time for the children to spend quality time with you, speaking about the work that they have been doing and explaining what they have learnt.

In maths, the children have been looking at multiplication arrays and have been taught that multiplication sums can be read in either direction. It is sometimes easier to multiply one way than another, depending on the children’s times tables knowledge. We have also looked more closely at the 2, 5 and 10 times tables.

In IPC, we went to space and discovered Neil Armstrong, the first man on the moon, who famously said, “That’s one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind”. We also started to learn about Lord Horatio Nelson. We will tell you more about this learning next week.

As we will be celebrating World Book Day on Thursday, our weekend home learning is for the children to write a review of their favourite book and to think about their costume for this day. We look forward to sharing the children’s book recommendations in class next week. Meanwhile, we now have our classroom doors to decorate! We have been set the challenge to create a children’s book on our doors for a competition which will be judged by Sally, our local librarian! We will no doubt share these with you next week. We look forward to seeing you on Monday afternoon. Have a great weekend!

Year 1

We hope you all had a wonderful half term with your children! They have come back ready to learn and excited to find out more about our IPC topic ‘The Magic ToyMaker’. This week we introduced all the children to the classic story of Pinocchio. They loved finding out how a puppet came to life. They answered questions based on the story and are improving their comprehension skills. In English, the children learnt how to use conjunctions to join two simple sentences. They used words such as and, but, or and so. In contrast to the story, they used non fiction books and the internet to research information about puppets. They then wrote their own facts based on their research. Using their new knowledge, they all created their own information text about puppets, using pictures, captions and fact boxes.

In maths, the children have been consolidating their understanding of addition. They practised the skill of counting on starting with the largest number. Some children used the numicon, cubes or a number line to support their learning. They have also recapped their knowledge of number bonds and from next week the children will be having a number bond quiz each week on a Friday. (Please refer to separate letter.) We are really pleased to see so many of the children enjoying Times Table Rockstars and have noticed an improvement in their mental arithmetic.

In our Art lesson this week, the children were given a painting called Children's Games. Children's Games is an oil painting by Flemish Renaissance artist Pieter Bruegel the Elder, painted in 1560. They had to use observational skills to identify all the different games they could see being played. Some of the games were leapfrog, horsey and tug of war. Then they compared the games in the painting with the games play themselves. They were interested to learn that some of the games were similar to those of today. The children drew their own illustrations of playground games which will be used to create a collaborative collage.

We are really looking forward to our World Book Day celebrations next week and seeing the children dressed up as their favourite book characters!


What a busy first week back! We have continued our topic learning about ‘People who help us’, this week we have focused on builders. The children have managed the risks around them when using hammers and saws. They have enjoyed cutting up wood and hammering nails into polystyrene and wood.

Our maths focus this week has been on length and height which has come in handy during our role play as builders as the children used different objects to measure and discuss whose construction was the tallest or the longest. We have measured using different sized cubes and found out that a snake that was 10 cubes long could be very long or very short depending which cubes we used! Next week we will be looking at standard units of measure and introducing rulers and meter sticks.

All of the EYFS have been busily creating their doors ready for our school door competition next week. I wonder if you can guess what our theme is?


The Nursery has been filled with lots of handymen and women this week, as we have been learning about the building trade. The children have been busily creating structures, both large and small, emulating the building work next door they have been observing over the last few months. They have discussed the importance of safety equipment on site, and learnt about different tools trades people use and their various functions.

We have really enjoyed reading the story of the Three Little Pigs and had a go at building houses for some of the Nursery toys. All the children were eager to act out the story using stick puppets and took turns in being the different characters and the narrator. I think there might be some budding future actors in Nursery!

The children have also been very busy making invitations for their Mums to join us for a special Mother’s Day afternoon tea. They are really excited to become waiters and waitresses for this event. Please send back your RSVPs so we can cater for the correct number.

Next week we will be welcoming a parent to talk to us about her job as a hairdresser.

Have a lovely weekend.


Save the date

  • Rainbow Day 22nd March (children wear their own clothes and donate unwanted uniform)
  • Quiz Night 29th March
  • Second hand uniform Sale 1st April

Match Funding

Many large companies offer match funding benefits to employees - where they match a figure your chosen charity raises - up to £700 per time. We'd love to hear from anyone whose company offers this benefit, as we are a registered charity and could therefore increase the revenue from the events we run enormously. If just a handful of parents stepped forward it would make a massive difference. Your HR department will be able to confirm if your company participates in the scheme - most large banks do, as well as other sectors.

The Giving Machine

Remember, when you are shopping online you can generate a free cash donation for us just by clicking via www.TheGivingMachine.co.uk. You’ll find over 2,200 of the most popular stores, so it’s easy for you to make a difference without it costing you a penny more than the normal purchase price of your item. Your shopping has already raised over £100 for St Olave’s so please remember to shop through this link whenever you are shopping online!

St Olave’s School Trust on TheGivingMachine: https://www.thegivingmachine.co.uk/causes/st-olaves-school-trust-266085

Bromley Festival of Music and Speech

There has been a mix up with dates for the Bromley Festival and the School Choir will now be taking part on Friday 22 March at 17.00

Thank you, Miss Beacom

This year we are raising money for Red Nose Day on Friday 15th March. The children can pay £2 to wear a funny face to school and come to the Talent Show in the afternoon. A “funny face” could include a red nose, a wig, or a painted face. They still need to wear their full school uniform.

Upper School children will have the opportunity to show off their talents in a Talent Show. The judges will watch the acts at lunchtimes from 4th March. The best acts will get to perform in front of the whole school at our Talent Show on Friday 15th March.

We really appreciate your support. If you have any questions, please get in touch.

Mrs Farrell

Saturday Gardening Club

Our first Saturday Gardening Club of the year will begin on the 30th March from 10am until 12pm at the allotments in Southwood Road. Please feel free to drop in at any point, your help would be much appreciated. No gardening expertise is necessary! Also on a gardening theme, we are hoping to grow leeks with the children and with that in mind, are looking for about 60 toilet roll centres (the cardboard bit!). If you could bring them in to school and pass them on to me, it would be great. Thank you.

Mr Pradic

Pet Club

This week we had another visit from Pixie, Holly, Gregor and Mrs O. Pixie is a Jack Russell Terrier and is 6 years old; Gregor told us that in dog years Pixie is 42. Pixie had just had a holiday at the kennels and a bath and her fur was very soft. Pixie loves chasing her own tail, digging in the garden, and chasing grapes. She loves being with people and was happy to let everyone stroke her. Thank you for visiting Pet Club.

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