Park Hill Preparatory School the deerstalker issue 11 - 9th december 2016

From the Headmaster:

I find it difficult to believe that it was just this time last week that many people were busy carrying tables, chairs, Christmas trees and decorating the school with a whole range of decorations in advance of our very successful fayre. I very much hope you all enjoyed the afternoon and that you enjoyed splatting the rat, guessing the name and entering into a virtual world.

A tremendous amount of work went into the event, with so many members of our community working so hard to ensure it was enjoyed by so many (apologies for the Churchill-esque sentence!) Your efforts are not unnoticed and I very much hope that you had the opportunity to enjoy the day yourselves.

I am grateful to you all for your hard work and support for the event, with over 1500 raised I am very keen to ensure that all members of our community are involved in deciding how to best spend the money. Immediately following the upcoming holidays I will be writing to you with details of a meeting involving children (school council) and parents to discuss how best to proceed.

As you will see from the images included within this edition, we held a very successful dress rehearsal this week in advance of the Nativity. I would strongly recommend that you attend what promises to be a thoroughly enjoyable event to start the Christmas holidays.

The Older Years....

I am absolutely delighted to confirm that I am now in a position to provide you with full details of not just the drawings of the new building development due to take place at the rear of the school but also how we will ensure that, as our children continue up to Year 6, we will provide them with the curriculum and co-curricular activities demanded at this age. The necessary elements for sport, performing and musical arts, Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics/Mechanics are now in place in addition to the architectural plans for the new buildings.

As you will be aware, our oldest class (currently Year 3) will lead the way as we expand each year up to Year 6. As critical as providing the necessary resources, specialist teachers and teaching rooms is the need to ensure the schools that our children will ultimately go on to are working closely with us so that the curriculum and planning can be adjusted and refined accordingly. This process is already taking place, with a clear strategy set to ensure the transition and options are provided for at 11+ and increasingly for schools happy to offer places for Year 7 at 10+.

I would like to invite you all to attend an information meeting on Thursday 12th January 2017 at 8am and, for those of you unable to attend this meeting, again at 7pm so that I can provide you with the details and so that you can ask the necessary questions to be accordingly reassured.

It is a very exciting development and one that we will benefit all of our children through the enhanced provision and subject knowledge that additional colleagues and specialist classrooms and resources will bring. An extraordinary amount of time and energy has already been expended in a very concentrated period of time to make this a success; I am in no doubt that we are in a unique position to continue to offer the highest standard of education and provision of resources whilst retaining our small, coeducational class sizes in a caring and very family orientated school. We all enjoy the size and ethos of our school, the new development can only enhance this.

This is a critical development for the school and I would very much like to encourage you all to attend either of the meetings on the 12th so that you can be part of a most exciting development. Your feedback and involvement is absolutely critical.

With Christmas and New Year still to enjoy between now and the 12th, I very much look forward to seeing you all at the Nativity on Thursday; it will be a fondly remembered event. Immediately following the performance, the children will return to their classrooms where they can be collected at 12.30pm.

Kind regards,

Alistair Bond

P.S. - Don't forget your Christmas jumpers on Monday - it is a mufti day! (No uniform needed)

The Lodge

During the Christmas holiday a smaller development will be taking place on the green court/lawn area directly opposite our current First Steps classroom. The Lodge, which will be clad in cedar wood and feature floor to ceiling height windows, will provide us with much needed additional space. The First Steps children will be making the short journey from their current classroom and will be enjoying the additional space that The Lodge provides (along with brand new furniture and additional resources). The current First Steps classroom will accommodate one of the Second Steps classes and, during the half term break in February, we plan to move the office from its current location to the downstairs front room which will greatly assist Mrs Blower and Mrs Watts.

During the upcoming holiday I will keep you posted on the progress of the installation. I am delighted that this first development is taking place so quickly and, with the building being clad in cedar wood that will age to a very attractive colour, it will enhance the wonderful natural environment we all enjoy. The garden immediately in the vicinity will also be tidied.

Information from First Steps

It has been a very busy week in First Steps. We throughly enjoyed watching the 'Forgotten Elf' on Monday morning. The children were perfectly behaved on the journey and during the performance. We would like to thank all of the parent helpers who kindly joined us. We have carried on decorating our classroom and making it ready for Christmas party time next Tuesday afternoon - you are all invited to join us!

We also enjoyed writing letters to Santa and very much hope he has already received them!

Information from Second Steps

Second Steps have enjoyed a busy, festive week. We really loved our trip to see The Christmas Elf on Monday and this started off a super Christmas themed week. Monday continued with Woodland school, where we made Christmas decorations using twigs from the park. We have concentrated on our sound of the week - the letter C, for writing and word building. In Maths, we looked at putting our Post Office parcels into size order and have been writing and posting lots of letters to Santa.

We enjoyed a preview of the Nativity as we had a dress rehearsal on Thursday and looked lovely in our sparkly outfits!

For cooking this week, we have decorated gingerbread biscuits after listening to the Gingerbread Boy story and today had a special Christmas lunch, complete with crackers!

Information from Reception

Wow! With the end of the term fast approaching Reception have been extremely busy. We enjoyed a trip to All Saints Church in Kingston to watch ‘The Lonely Christmas Elf’. The children loved joining in with the songs and helping Stripes find his way home! In Performing Arts, we have been practicing hard with our Nativity performance and we even got to try on our wonderful costumes. This week in Maths, we have been using the rulers to measure different objects and we started to use centimetres to say how long and tall objects were.

End of Term Reports

I am pleased to confirm that all end of term reports will be published on Tuesday 13th December. These interim reports are designed to provide you with details of the progress of your son/daughter in the core subjects so far this academic year. I would ask that you discuss the contents with your child and to celebrate the many complimentary and positive comments contained within each subject report and to reflect on the targets suggested by my colleagues.

It has been a pleasure to read each one, you all should feel most proud of your children.

Information from Year 1

In Maths this week, we have been exploring coordinates and direction. The children learnt how to describe a journey using compass points and grid references. We designed treasure maps and then wrote questions with coordinate answers. “I love this Maths,” Avery.

In Literacy, we worked on our instructions and explanations to ensure that they were clear and detailed. So much so that an alien could understand them. Explaining Christmas to an alien proved trickier than expected, there was so much to say ...

In Art, we created dream catchers. The Native American people believe that the air is full of dreams and that the Bream catcher web will trap bad dreams and allow good dreams to flow through the holes and trickle down the feathers to the sleeping person below.

Information from Year 2 and Year 3

This week in Owl Class, we have been getting ready for Christmas. We enjoyed a wonderful production on Monday. In Literacy, we have been writing letters to Santa and working on our letter structure. In Maths, we have been looking at weight. This half term we thoroughly enjoyed our rugby lesson on Tuesday. Our focus was getting past a defender in pairs and (hopefully) scoring a try. The children have made great progress this half term. In preparation for the nativity, we have been rehearsing our songs and had a full dress rehearsal on Thursday. We are all very excited to perform for you next week. Next Monday is our class party. Don't forget to wear your Christmas jumpers!


As you will be aware, our Nativity will be taking place on Thursday 15th December at 11am. The children and staff have been very busy behind the scenes preparing for the performance.

I am aware that some of you will be unable to join us on the day due to work commitments. In addition to being able to purchase a video of the performance we would like to offer a secure live streaming performance that you may be able to watch from your desk. If this is of interest to you I would ask that you contact Mrs. Blower to express your interest. Assuming that there is sufficient demand we will then provide you with the necessary login details. If you would like to order a video, the order form can be accessed here -


Please ensure that all items of clothing are named. This time of year, with increased layers being worn, we do what we can to return lost property. We would be grateful if you could assist us in ensuring that items are labelled.

Mrs Barikor has kindly established a Facebook page where you can request, post, sell and even donate spare items of uniform. Please follow this link to access the page -

Boot bags are now available from Lester Bowden to help reduce the spread of mud in bags on Tuesdays. All items can be ordered directly through their website.

Drop off and Collection Arrangements

The side gate is open each day from 8.00am-8.05am for early bird drop off. It will then be opened again from 8.15am-8.30am for drop off, and 3.30pm - 3.40pm for collection. Early bird drop off is for children only and you should leave your children with the member of staff on duty.

If you are running late, please inform Mrs Blower so we can make the necessary arrangements.

Breakfast Club

You are welcome to bring your children to breakfast club which opens its doors at 7.30am. £5 per session to be paid on the day.


Please help us maintain the very best relationships with our neighbours by not blocking or parking in their drives when dropping off or collecting your children.

Please do not park on the yellow chevrons directly in front of the school for the safety of all of our children.

Woodland School

Could I ask that you ensure that waterproof trousers and coats are brought into school on the relevant day (regardless of the forecast) so that we maximise our use of Richmond Park.

Don't forget, this weekend…

Christmas jumper shopping for Monday 12th December Save the Children fundraising.

Please collect any decorations that were kindly used for the Fayre.

After School Activities

Please note, all clubs, with the exception of After School Club, will not take place in the final week of term.

The link to apply for a place on the various activities can be found here -

If I could remind you that should you wish to apply for a place for after school club next week. These requests can be accommodated up to 2pm each day, with the form being taken off line at 2pm to ensure we can make the necessary arrangements. Places for after school club are restricted to children attending Second Steps through to Year 3.

Should you need to cancel an After School Club session, please contact Mrs Blower directly to amend the form.

Dates for the Diary -

Monday 12th December - Christmas Class Parties. Mufti for all!

Monday 12th December - Christmas Jumper Day - Save The Children Charity fundraiser.

Wednesday 14th December - No swimming, cancelled due to pool closure.

Thursday 15th December - Christmas Nativity 11am. Last Day of term. School closes at 12.30pm.

Term resumes - Tuesday 10th January 2017.

Christmas Lunch!

Please do not hesitate to contact the school office if you would like to obtain a copy of an image of your child that is included in the newsletter.

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Park Hill


Alistair Bond

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