From the Head
St Olave’s transformed into a sea of blue today as the children and staff wore blue to stand up to bullying. Our Rights Respecting Ambassadors delivered a lesson to every class about kindness and what to do if someone is unkind and we tweeted an amazing photograph of the children dressed in blue in front of our kindness wall (more about that later in the Newsletter).
On Thursday Mr Turner led an assembly about Cyber Bullying, called Stop, Speak, Support. The assembly emphasised the importance of talking to an adult they trust if they are uncomfortable with something they have seen or heard online and supporting their friends if they need it. Mr Turner also discussed the challenges associated with online communication and how easily written messages can be misinterpreted leading to avoidable and unnecessary conflict.
Today Miss Brown led a special assembly for Remembrance Day, about the importance of remembering the sacrifices of others. Armistice Day was declared on 11 November 1918 and Big Ben sounded on the hour at 11am – the eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month. This weekend's two-minute silence will commence at precisely that time, marking exactly 100 hundred years to the second the First World War came to an end. The children were very respectful when observing the two-minute silence at 11am today and the silence was broken by the Last Post being played.
Tomorrow morning is our first Open Morning of the year. The school is looking at its very best; the children’s work is superb and the classroom displays reflect the excellent learning that has already taken place this year. My thanks to the staff for their time in preparing for and supporting Open Morning and to the many parents who have offered their support to be tour guides. We are completely full and are operating waiting lists in many classes and our assessments for next year’s Nursery and Reception places are in a few short weeks. Thank you to you all for your recommendations of the school; I really appreciate your constant support of the school. I look forward to seeing many of you, along with some current and past pupils tomorrow morning and I hope that you all have a lovely relaxing weekend.
Kind regards, Miss Holloway
At St Olave’s Prep School, we care about the wellbeing of both our pupils and staff and we are always looking for ways that we can help support our school family. This year, as you know, we are working incredibly hard to achieve the Wellbeing Award for Schools administered by Award Place, in partnership with the National Children’s Bureau.
This whole-school award focuses on ensuring effective practice and provision is in place that promotes the emotional wellbeing and mental health of both staff and pupils.
The award has a focus on changing the long-term culture of a school, and embedding an ethos where mental health is regarded as the responsibility of all.
With this award, schools can:
- Show their commitment to promoting mental health as part of school life
- Improve the emotional wellbeing of their staff and pupils
- Ensure mental health problems are identified early and appropriate support provided
- Offer provision and interventions that matches the needs of its pupils and staff
- Engage the whole-school community in the importance of mental health awareness
- Capture the views of parents, pupils and teachers on mental health
We are well on our journey to achieving this award and hope to have it in place this academic year. Thank you to the huge number of parents that completed the survey last term; our change team are busy analysing the parent, child and staff survey responses and writing a wellbeing strategy which will be shared with you when it is complete. If you would like any further information regarding the award, please contact the School Office and a member of the change team will be in touch.
- 1st Prize: Mrs Brame
- 2nd Prize: Mrs French
- 3rd Prize: Mrs Ghuman
It’s that time of year again! Over half term, please could you start to collect the different items required for the Christmas Fayre; Gifts for the Secret room, bottles for the bottle tombola, coloured items to fill and decorate your child’s jar and good quality second hand toys for the toy stall. We will also be collecting chocolate for the chocolate tombola which will be organised by the Year 6 children. Flyers for all of the above have been sent home with your child - please remember to check your child’s bag!
- Quiz Night - Friday 16th November 7.00pm - There are still a few tables left for the quiz night but tickets are selling fast. Come along and see if you can beat the staff…! Tickets available through ParentPay, individual tickets £8, table of 8 £60.
- Christmas Fayre - Saturday 1st December 11am - 2pm
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.
We would love to have some committee members from Nursery and Year 6; please see any member of the FRSC or Mrs Farrell on the gate if you would like to find out more. Anyone willing to offer help, services or donations, please see Mrs Farrell for further information.
The Giving Machine
Remember, when you are buying Christmas presents 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.
St Olave’s School Trust on TheGivingMachine: https://www.thegivingmachine.co.uk/causes/st-olaves-school-trust-266085
We hope you have enjoyed looking at the fabulous Christmas cards designed by your children this year. Thank you to those who have already returned their forms to place an order. This is a reminder that order forms and money need to be returned to the school by Monday 12th November. Exact monies only please, either cash or a cheque made payable to the school. Thank you for your support as all packs ordered means more money for the school.
Our Kindness Wall
All the children were very excited to see the creation of Our Kindness Wall this week. It is a fantastic display of teamwork across all age groups and celebrates creativity. Our school values Kindness above all else and this message permeates around our school community in all that we do, making it a lovely environment for everyone.
This term our Jigsaw PSHEE theme is about Celebrating Difference. The lessons will focus on anti-bullying and will give the children a chance to discuss strategies in a safe environment about how to deal with bullying. Examples of themes discussed in the Upper School are: discrimination, power struggles, rumours, name calling, racism, judging by appearances, making assumptions, words that harm, compliments, witness bullying, families, family conflict and respect for difference. Examples of themes discussed in the Lower School and the EYFS are: similarities and differences, boys and girls, stereotypes, making a new friend, what is bullying? standing up for myself and others, what I am good at, families, special me and making friends. During assembly this week, the children were introduced to a video about some dancing skeletons called ‘Love has no labels’.
Femi (Year 2) explained that the video was giving us a lesson that everyone is the same on the inside and should be treated equally.
All children have brought a copy of our Child Friendly Anti Bullying policy home today. A copy of the policy can also be found here.
Year 6 came back refreshed after the half term break. We started the week by talking about how to prepare for interviews, as some of the children have them coming up over the coming months. We discussed how important it is to present ourselves well and also think about how we greet the interviewer when we come into the room.
In maths, the children have had to show real resilience as they have been taking part in ‘Barvember’. This is a national challenge organised by White Rose Maths to encourage everyone to use the Bar Modelling method. It is a useful tool for helping children visualise and then solve maths problems. ‘Three Before T’ was put to the test during the activities and some children said they experienced being in the Learning Pit because it was the first time they had done bar modelling. The children persevered and enjoyed approaching the problems using a new method. We have also revised factors of numbers and how to apply them to division problems.
In English, we have continued to read ‘Shackleton’s Journey’ and have focused on instructional writing this week. The children planned and wrote instructions for how to build an igloo as Shackleton's crew had used them for cooking in. We were surprised to hear that it can only take 30 minutes for skilled Inuits to build an igloo. Despite never having made one, we were impressed with their knowledge of how the structure works.
In IPC, we have started our new topic - Drugs Education. We started the topic by finding out what the children know already. Some of them were surprised to hear that drinks such as Coca Cola and ‘energy’ drinks contain caffeine as well as lots of sugar. Through an experiment, involving a nut and bolt, the children timed themselves trying to thread the nut onto the bolt and then re-did the experiment using a tea towel. They found it much harder and we talked about the effect drugs can have on us to carry out everyday tasks safely e.g. driving.
Please can all children bring in an old T-shirt and trousers plus a plastic bag for swimming next Tuesday as they will be learning some life saving skills.
Year 5 have had a super start back at school after their half term break and we enjoyed hearing about the adventures the children had been on during their holidays. In maths this week, the children reminded themselves of our maths topic before the half term break. We recapped multi-step problems involving addition and subtraction in preparation for our end of unit assessment. We are looking forward to learning about statistics next week. On Thursday, a group of Year 5 children were invited to attend a maths event at Blackheath High School. During the event the children took part in a range of problem solving activities with the support of Year 10 pupils from the school. These children will be sharing these activities back at school with their Year 5 group and acting as mentors during the challenge.
On Tuesday, the children started their new PSHEE topic, ‘Celebrating Differences’. During our thoughtful discussions, we touched on Remembrance Sunday and the reason why we wear poppies at this time of year. Some of the children told stories about family members who were involved in the wars, as well as discussing the meaning of wearing a purple poppy. We discovered that they are in memory of animals who supported humans during the wars.
In English this week, we continued reading ‘Cosmic’ and discussed the differences and similarities between two characters, Liam and Florida. We then went on to create a shared piece of writing using our detailed ‘Double-Bubble’ planning sheets, which helped to prepare further for our individual pieces of writing. Please remember to follow our learning journey via our Twitter page @StOlavesYr5.
We have had a fantastic week back at school. We have very much enjoyed reading the earthquake research carried out over the holidays; the children clearly worked very hard to find out as many interesting facts as possible.
On Wednesday we found out about Diwali and enjoyed sharing Indian sweets (some delicious chocolate barfi) in celebration of this festival. It was interesting to find out how many similarities there are between Diwali and other festivals celebrated by children in school.
We have started a new text in English by looking only at the front cover of the book. This gave the children the chance to explore an image in detail and use this to try to pick up clues about the story. They found they had a lot of questions from the strange picture on the front cover and are now looking forward to reading the book to find out more.
It may have been a bit wetter and darker earlier, but Year 3 children have come back to school with an excellent attitude to their studies!
This week, Mrs Appleby was very keen to impress on the children that the timeline from the Stone Age to modern times may not look quite as they might expect. So we all went outside armed with a toilet roll…
It proved a very effective way to demonstrate just how long the Stone Age lasted; with the time from the birth of Christ to present day only taking up two sheets of toilet roll and just the Palaeolithic (Old Stone Age) taking up more than nine hundred and eighty eight!
The research completed by the children over the holiday was fantastic. Here are some of the excellent pieces on the Bronze and Iron Ages.