Park Hill Preparatory School the deerstalker issue 19 - 10th march 2017

From the Headmaster:

We were very fortunate with weather conditions for our Inter-House Cross Country on Tuesday. Perfect conditions underfoot and sufficiently warming Spring sunshine ensured a most memorable and competitive event. I would very much hope that all of the children will look back at the event with fondness. A school cross country can bring back (painful) memories of long slogs around school grounds at the mercy of the PE staff. Fortunately, in many enlightened schools, there is a greater emphasis in ensuring children enjoy being physically active and are not deterred from being so in later life!

The competition involved children running a set distance before then deciding exactly how far to run in order to collect a token, worth an increasing number of points depending on the distance. The children could then decide, depending on fatigue and time, which point to run to whilst still collecting valuable points for their House.

What stood out was the sense of team identity, which each athlete being encouraged and supported by their teammates. As you can see from the image, St. Andrew's were the eventual victors.


There are a number of key dates that I would like to draw to your attention. The parent meetings are taking place on 15th and 16th March (the online booking portal is live through our website) and on Tuesday 21st March we shall be holding the inter-house hockey tournament at Kingston Grammar School all-weather hockey pitches at Ditton Field from 10.30am to 12pm.

As I type, I can hear the children and a very pleasing number of parents enjoying the phonics workshop kindly organised by Miss Menon. I was also pleased that there was an opportunity to visit the Reception class in order to see the progress the children make with their phonics as they move up to Reception. I confess that I am in no way impartial but I would also hope that those of you fortunate enough to attend also witnessed first hand the quality of teaching the children enjoy.

I am delighted to confirm that we shall be hosting an Easter Camp with Premier Sports once again using Park Hill as their base. The camp will run for nine days in total. Numbers will be limited to 30 children per day. Further information will be released early next week. If you would like to confirm your place in advance please complete this Google form -

It seems Spring has well and truly sprung. Having missed out on the seasons in the last few years, it is a delight to smell freshly cut grass and to see the colour return to the Park. I hope you have an enjoyable weekend.

Yours sincerely,


Phonics Workshop

We were delighted that so many of you were able to attend the workshop this morning. In addition to observing three groups, many of you were also able to visit the Reception class to see how the children progress with their phonics and to gain a greater understanding on how to support your children at home. What is clear is that we can make further use of Tapestry, post videos and documents in order to provide you with practical ideas on how to support learning at home.

I would like to thank Miss Menon, Miss Dixon and Mrs Burn for kindly organising the workshop as well as Miss Renfrew and Mrs Hanif for hosting the Reception visit. We will organise further workshops in the coming weeks.

News From First Steps

This week in First Steps we have been focusing on the story of The Very Hungry Caterpillar. We have enjoyed exploring their life cycle and various activities have taken place in class. This included welcoming our little live caterpillars into our room. They have grown so big already and we are awaiting the moment they build their cocoons.

On Wednesday, the children enjoyed their trip to the Crafty Cafe where they loved expressing themselves through using various paints and exploring colour mixtures.

News from Second Steps

Second Steps have had a very busy and enjoyable week. Continuing with our Fairytale topic, the children were introduced to The Billy Goats Gruff story. They were extremely excited at the prospect of meeting the giant from Jack and the Beanstalk last week and now would like to meet the Trolls! The children really enjoyed the Crafty Cafe trip where they painted a tile creating marks and exploring colour mixing.

In Phonics, the children have been working extremely hard to build and write simple CVC beginning with the letter 'b'. It was lovely to see so many of you at our Phonics workshop this morning. We do hope it was helpful. If you have any questions or enquiries please do not hesitate to speak to a member of staff.

During the Church Assembly on Thursday 16th March, Second Steps will be performing a song they have been learning as part of their topic of Fairy Tales. All the Second Steps children who attend school on the Thursday will be taking part. It would be lovely to see as many Second Steps parents there as possible.

News from Reception

Well, Reception have been extremely busy this week with two trips! On Tuesday we had a fantastic experience at Pizza Express. The children got to make their own margharita pizzas. Each child had an apron and chef hat which made them look so professional, Bemi stated “I look like a real master chef!”

They had to use three fingers to squash the dough and then we learnt an amazing tomato spreading technique where they had to tap and bash all around the plate to make the sauce move! Once our pizzas were cooked we able to eat them and wow! they were delicious. On Wednesday morning we had another trip out, this time to Crafty Cafe, where we have made a special Mothers Day surprise!

News from Year 1

Our focus this week in Maths has been measure and how to make sure we measure accurately with centimetres and rulers. We took an active and investigative approach comparing estimates and actual measurements and then questioning why there may have been a difference. I was thrilled to see Year 1 applying their knowledge of fractions to their measuring. Well done!

Our topic lesson also took a maths approach and we learnt how to sort dinosaurs according to their characteristics in a Carroll diagram.

In Literacy, we have been looking at singular and plural and how to change words by adding an -s or -es suffix.

We have also been writing poems but these will have to remain a mystery until a forthcoming assembly. We do hope that you will enjoy it.

News from Year 2 and Year 3

This week, Year 2 and Year 3 been creating diaries, in preparation for our work next week. They have covered an A6 book and decorated it in a multitude of amazing ways.

In Maths, Year 2 and Year 3 have focused on column subtraction, particularly learning to take to solve trickier sums - they are getting better everyday. They throughly enjoyed their Woodlands School this week, drawing beautiful pictures of some of the natural features. In addition, Year 2 and Year 3 took part in our cross country race with a difference. They ran very well and worked well together as a team - with our captains organising the younger children so they could collect the most points. Danny worked particularly hard and his team (St Andrews) was ultimately victorious.

Instrumental Lessons

I am delighted that so many more children are now benefitting from a more flexible approach to the delivery of instrumental lessons. We now have double the number of children attending lessons during the school day, with Mr. Tim Patrick and Mrs. Baillie offering Piano, Voice and Guitar lessons throughout the week.

Audrey demonstrated just what excellent progress she is making during her lessons by playing in front of the assembly on Thursday; Such confidence to play in front of so many people is impressive.

Please contact Miss. Georgina if you would like your child to experience a taster session or to book lessons.

Easter Camp - Premier Sport

I am delighted to confirm that we shall be hosting an Easter Camp with Premier Sports once again using Park Hill as their base. The camp will run for nine days in total. Numbers will be limited to 30 children per day. Further information will be released early next week. If you would like to confirm your place in advance please complete this Google form -

Breakfast Club

In order to ensure we can obtain accurate numbers for Breakfast Club each day we have adapted the form currently used to book a place for the after school club. If you wish to apply for a place for breakfast club for the next day or coming 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. These bookings will need to be made each week and will be 'online' from 3pm each Friday afternoon for the consecutive week.


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 and the new games kit (Year 1 upwards) are now available from Lester Bowden. All items can be ordered directly through their website.

There will be a Uniform Sale on Thursday 23rd March, immediately following the Mother's Day assembly. With the summer term just around the corner, what better time than a spring clean of uniform?

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.


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 or across driveways 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…

Sainsbury's Active Kids Vouchers - Collection box by the side gate.

Parent Workshop - ICT @ Park Hill, Wednesday, 8.30am

Parent-Teacher Meetings - Wednesday & Thursday evening.

After School Activities

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

If I could remind you that should you wish to apply for a place for after school club, 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 who are at least 3 years old.

Dates for the Diary -

15th March - Parent Workshop - ICT @ Park Hill, 8.30am

15th March - Parent Teacher Meetings

16th March - Parent Teacher Meetings

21st March - Inter House Hockey @ Ditton Field 10.30am - 12pm

21st March - Giant Wiggle Walk - 1st Steps, 2nd Steps and Reception

22nd March - No swimming - pool closed

23rd March - Mother's Day Assembly

24th March - Red Nose Day

27th to 30th March - School Photography Club Exhibition

30th March - 12.30pm Easter Holiday

Certificate Winners

Congratulations to: Annabel Rose, Matilda Bergefall, Molly Frost, Second Steps, Abigail Lewis, Marlon Fischer, Mario Pearce-Kulyk, Danny Prichard & Alexa Bond. Headmaster’s Merit - Max Verdult

Happy Birthday!

Mrs. Frost, Tristan Oliver, Elena Vasilikostas & Marlon Fisher.

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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