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The Georgian Friday, 9 October 2020

Behind the Study Door

I would like to start by thanking the community for their very donations to our Parents Group appeal this week, and in particular our volunteers for arranging this important collection and manning the collection points.

The wonderful children’s book, ‘The Crayon Box that Talked’ states:

Each of us is unique, but when we get together, the picture is complete (Shane DeRolf).

If we look at Howard Gardner’s Eight Aptitudes, there is no doubt that for all our pupils, the following styles and intelligences will have been stimulated at some point this week.

Whilst DeRolf’s book demonstrates our differences, the importance of individuality and nurturing and celebrating the power of our identity, Howard Gardner’s powerful research shows the diversity of thought and learning power that we all have.

This week has marked National Dyslexia Awareness Week, with the slogan this year “Dyslexia creates…” To quote the British Dyslexia Association:

Looking at the power of dyslexia to create ideas, organisations and society and the invaluable contribution this makes to the UK. We recognise, however, that dyslexia also creates challenges and barriers so this theme will enable us to raise awareness of these and explore best practice in dyslexia support that empowers individuals to achieve their potential.

Everyone has a unique learning style and there is no doubt that we can easily find words to complete the mantra “Dyslexia creates….” in so many ways:

  • ...entrepeneurs
  • ...creative thinkers
  • ...inquirers
  • ...perseverers
  • ...courageousness
  • ...tenacity
  • ...diverse thinkers
  • ...problem solvers
  • ...risk takers

(the list goes on)

If we revisit the much quoted ‘Future of Jobs’ report by the World Economic Forum (below), we can get a palpable sense of what skills will be most sought after from our young people in the future.

The World Economic Forum

As curricula, learning and teaching frameworks and assessment models start to develop to reflect these skills, it is my hope that as we moved into the new decade, those with dyslexia can see it not only as a learning style, but a learning power. Curricula such as the International Baccalaureate, and assessment models like the Pre-Senior Baccalaureate, as skills-based frameworks are ideally placed to nurture and propel children with every type of learning style, and whilst many will encounter challenges along the way, it should never be a barrier to success.

The Pre-Senior Baccalaureate (PSB) Skills Matrix

When I reflect on my own education, I certainly found it a struggle at times to overcome my own dyslexia and dyspraxia, however I can identify my own learning strengths on models such as Gardner’s ‘Eight Aptitudes’ and the IB Learner Profile (below).

I find the positive messaging that comes from campaigns such as this year’s dyslexia awareness week immensely heartening. Turning a learning challenge (whilst still acknowledging and supporting this) into an opportunity is a powerful mantra for young people.

Our young people do matter, they are unique in their learning powers. Through this diversity of thought and style we can ensure that, like the box of crayons,

When we get together, the picture is complete.

Wishing all St George’s families a happy weekend, wherever your adventures take you.

William Goldsmith

Golden Tree and Celebration Assembly

Kindergarten Ladybirds

Arian D: for beginning to become independent in trying to do things for himself.

Aariz C: for sharing interesting predictions during our weekly science experiments.

Kindergarten Bees

Henrietta B: for including her friends in her games outdoors.

Farid S: for spending a long time printing a colourful rainbow with paint and vegetables.

Reception E

Krish K: for showing great enthusiasm for MindUp lessons and being able to name the parts of our brain. Well done!

Florence B: for beginning to use her sounds to read and write three letter words. Keep up the great work!

Reception P

Oliver S: for having a go at blending sounds to read words. He has been practising and is beginning to get the hang of it.

Effy A: for working so hard in RWInc. She is using her sounds to read and write CVC words.

1AG

Raphaël A: for working very very hard all week! We are thrilled with you Raphaël!

Hugo Z: for working hard to speak in English and for great number work too.

Aidan M: for outstanding Maths work

1JH

Zachary M: for always displaying exemplary behaviour and good manners. Well done.

Annabelle B: for her focus in class and her thoughtful and detailed drawing.

William F: for a big improvement in his reading fluency and excellent mental Maths.

2SS

Ludo O: for working hard and being a sensible and reliable member of the class.

Nina J: for writing a wonderful autumn fact file and painting a beautiful picture.

Freddie L: for excellent Maths work and working really hard at completing column addition questions.

Harry D: for making great progress in Maths and working really well with a partner.

2GA

Gus M: For enthusiasm in Autumn art work and creating a beautiful painting

Joel H: for working well in a small group, listening carefully to and helping others.

Charlie D-T: for working hard in Maths this week and using the practical equipment well.

3CH

Julia J: for very pleasing creative writing and artistic work.

Reuben C: for working hard in all subjects and super participation in discussions.

3ML

Elizabeth G: for designing a wonderful Canopic jar for her history prep.

Ben W: for always being kind and thoughtful towards others in the class.

Special Commendation

Alex B: for his excellent coding.

Eleanor B, Daisy H and Toby I for their fantastic coding on Snail vs Spider!

HEAD MASTER'S COMMENDATIONS

Charlie H: for his History prep. He has gone above and beyond and completed some excellent research.

Joanna H, James C, Toby D and Ava Salter: for some imaginative and brilliantly written diary entries based on Street Child in English.

George H: for the fantastic effort he shows across the curriculum and his willingness to always lend a hand.

Jonty O: for a fabulous piece of creative writing using advanced story writing techniques.

Siena L: for representing her form so diligently and respectfully at Pupil Council.

Millie W: for always ensuring her work is beautifully presented and spending the time to check it is accurate and as thorough as it should be.

Richard C: for an excellent acrostic poem including brilliant imagery and rhyme about Queen Victoria’s coronation.

Matilda U-I, Katie K, Winnie B, Jonty O and Andreas L: for their excellent French poster and commendable effort in French.

Cicily W and Tom J: for listening carefully and always trying their best in French lessons.

Robin M: for his enthusiasm and quick coding.

Jessica G: for her resilience in coding.

Sam N: for an excellent sailing game.

Nefeli M and Radley H: for an excellent Maths presentation.

Miles M: for showing increased focus and endeavour in English this week.

Luca O: for making an excellent start to Year 7 and settling in really well.

Liv D: for always doing her best in English lessons and producing some high quality work.

SPIRIT OF ST GEORGE'S AWARDS

Max C: for helping a friend in need.

Nathan M: for willingly and consistently helping a friend.

Eliza M: for her ready smile and the kindness she shows to everyone she meets.

Views from the school this week

This week the Kindergarten Ladybird children have been celebrating all things Harvest! They have baked their own fruit and vegetable shaped biscuits, created rainbow vegetable prints and collected leaves on blustery autumn walks. After reading the story “Room on the Broom”, the Bee Class made witches hats and a variety of potions and spells. They made juice from green and red apples and discovered that the colour and taste of each juice was different. All the Kindergarten children are pleased that the school swimming pool is open again.

Year 1 children work very hard in their Read, Write, Inc lessons and with Mrs Powell. They enjoy sharing stories and learning from each other. 1AG have been talking and learning about the Moon and have written lists of what they would take to the moon! They have also written postcards from the moon to Mr Goldsmith. The children in 1JH the have been learning about castles and the fire at Windsor Castle.

The Pre-Prep children were full of energy climbing and swinging in their PE lessons in the Gym this morning.

The children in Year 2 have made fruit kebabs as a healthy snack as they have been learning about healthy eating in Science. In Maths they used practical equipment and worked in pairs on column addition. In Art they have been creating colourful autumn paintings.

The girls in Year 3 enjoyed playing benchball in the Gym last Friday. In their French lesson Y3 children practised their French alphabet on mini whiteboards. They thoroughly enjoyed this activity and will continue to learn how to spell their names orally next week. The children did a brain break after playtime before the start of a Maths lesson. Some children are writing up poems about the moon, using similes. Anna P shows the canopic jar she made from clay at home, linked with this term’s History topic on Ancient Egyptians. 3ML are enjoying this term’s class reader book: The Owl who was afraid of the Dark; it has inspired some fantastic artwork. They have also worked on maps in geography and learnt how to make a mummy in History!

4ER have been learning about the human body in Science and where the different organs are located. The Year 4 girls enjoyed a netball game on the astro.

Year 5 children enjoyed the opportunity to use the rowing machines in their PE lesson. Following on from learning about the life cycle of a plant, 5SD were fascinated to learn about the life cycle of a red admiral butterfly and have learnt some new scientific vocabulary: pupa, metamorphosis and imago.

Early in the week Year 7 spent a rather glorious morning outside examining the impact of heavy rainfall on the Thames tributary and looking at the various ways in which river erosion increases after rainfall. They also had a who can find the shiniest conker competition. In Y8 have been exploring the diversity of plants growing in the school grounds and finding out how many of them are adapted to their environment.

In Maths this week two Year 7 pupils were tasked with researching and preparing a lesson on fractions. Nefeli was asked to research how to multiply and divide fractions and to prepare a PowerPoint to present to the class. Radley was asked to prepare a starter showing the group how to convert between proper and improper fractions. Both received Head Master's Commendations for the quality of their presentations.

Guest Speaker

Our guest speaker on Tuesday was Baroness Tanni Grey Thompson, one of Britain’s greatest Paralympic athletes, acknowledged as one of the most gifted and courageous sportswomen of her generation. We are very lucky that she agreed to speak to us. Click below to listen to the podcast.

Pupil Council

Year 6 Council Members proudly wearing their Pupil Council badges

The first Pupil Council meetings of the Michaelmas term took place this week with numerous suggestions covering a varied range of issues. Inevitably, at the top end of the school their thoughts were dominated by food, however, they too raised a number of worthy issues that generated healthy discussion and debate.

Wishing the following pupils a very...

Dylan B, Alexander B, Mariella O’B, Josh T, Ryan T, Jessica G, Thomas D and Edward E.