A NOTE FROM EMMA AND WILLIAM
Compassion is the most powerful force in the world. It can defeat indifference, intolerance and injustice. It is able to replace judgment with acceptance because it makes no distinction between age, ethnicity, gender or disability. It freely embraces the rich diversity of humanity by treating everyone as equals. It benefits both those who receive it and those who share it. Every person on earth desires it, and every human being deserves it.
It is an absolute fact that our society cannot function without compassion. It’s a fundamental part of our communities, and it is necessary to ensure that all those in need receive the support and services they require. Compassion drives society to be inclusive and to allow all of its members to be fully engaged in life. It is what compels human beings to care about each other and to help each other.
A single act of compassion can change a person’s life forever
Compassion is the willingness to give. It’s the desire to donate your talents, abilities and, most importantly, your time. It is the commitment to place someone else’s needs above your own. Some mistakenly believe that compassion must always involve great personal sacrifice, but that is not true. The reward you receive from sharing your compassion is far more significant than anything you might give up in the process. To make a real difference in another human being’s life is a richly satisfying feeling, even in the simplest of ways.
Unfortunately, it is far too easy to stand on the side-lines in life and wait for “others” to do the right thing. It takes character and integrity to be the one who is willing to step up and make a difference. To feel sympathy for someone is not enough. We must also be willing to take action. That is why compassion requires courage. Together they are one of the most dynamic combinations in the world.
Compassion is the bond that unites all of humanity.
Compassion embraces the noblest characteristics of human beings. It allows us to think of others instead of always focusing on ourselves. It refuses to be selfish, it is willing to forgive, and it accepts people for who they are. Compassion gives us the ability to understand someone else’s situation and the desire to take action to improve their lives. It is the quality that allows us to step outside of ourselves and see the circumstances of others. It supplies the will power to do what is necessary to make the world a more caring place. Compassion inspires us to make an immediate and effective effort to come to the assistance of those who are dealing with challenges.
But it’s important to understand that compassion is more than just an emotion; it is a way of life. Compassion lifts people up. It encourages, praises and embraces the humanity of others. It is genuine, sincere and from the heart. It is the acknowledgement of the value of another person. It is the desire to make the human experience better not only for ourselves but also for everyone else. And because nothing can have a faster impact in life, the positive effects of compassion are multiplied when the person who receives it shares the benefits with others.
Compassion is the greatest gift one human being can share with another.
It is never too late for us to make a positive difference in the world. We simply start by thinking of others first. We consider their needs instead of focusing exclusively on what we want. We try to realise that our problems are often insignificant compared to what others face. We can each begin, right now, to enjoy a life based on compassion that will lead us on a fulfilling journey. We will experience a deep sense of joy in our efforts to improve lives. We will quickly understand how rewarding life can be when we sincerely make the effort to bring hope and opportunity to those facing challenges. We can learn to feel good about ourselves for attempting to be part of the solution. We can embrace a cause that is bigger than our small personal world. If we begin to fill our lives with compassion, we will develop an increasing awareness of the courageous struggles waged daily by our fellow human beings.
COMPASSION IS A CHARACTER TRAIT THAT IS PRESENT IN EVERYONE, HOWEVER IT IS ALSO A TRAIT THAT SOMETIMES GETS FORGOTTEN. THIS LIST OF 10 DIFFERENT WAYS TO SHOW COMPASSION, ONE FOR EACH LETTER OF THE WORD, IS COMPOSED OF EASY WAYS THAT PEOPLE OF ALL AGES CAN MAKE AN EFFORT TO SHOW COMPASSION DURING THIS COMING WEEK, OR BETTER YET IN EVERYDAY LIFE, REGARDLESS OF THE TIME OF YEAR.
1. CHALLENGE YOURSELF TO SMILE MORE
How many times do we walk into a room and see a majority of the people standing around looking like this ? They may glance down at their phones or look up as you walk by, but most of the time people are just neutral. Challenge yourself to smile more. Smile at your neighbour as you drive by, the delivery man as he drops off a package, and the lady at the supermarket who scans your shopping. Changing your look to something more like this is a small action can that can have a huge impact on someone else.
2. OPEN THE DOOR FOR SOMEONE
Think about the last time someone held a door open for you. Was it at the shops when your hands were full with shopping bags? Was it as you were entering or exiting school? No matter where it took place, chances are you were grateful to the person who held the door for you because it was one less task you had to worry about as you were moving to your next destination. Take a few seconds to open the door for someone else and better yet, remember to smile as they walk by you.
3. MOTIVATE OTHERS
Motivation is often an idea that many people struggle with. With the help from others, encouraging words and positivity can help to uplift someone’s spirit. Use some of these key phrases to help in your motivation, “You did it!” and “How do you feel about that?” Using positive language such as “You can do it!” helps to motivate as well.
4. PRACTISE KINDNESS
Many of the ideas on this list fall into the category “kindness”. Beyond this list, there are many more activities that are considered acts of kindness. Attempt to practise at least two different acts of kindness a day. This could include donating clothes to the poor, time to help serve meals, or maybe just phoning a friend to see how they are. The possibilities are endless!
5. ALLOCATE TIME TO BOND WITH FRIENDS AND FAMILY
Life is too short to be “busy” all the time. We all have a tendency to get caught up in the daily hustle and bustle of getting to school, going to work, getting homework done, and trying to catch up on jobs around the house. Set aside time to forget about everything you need to do and just spend a few hours catching up with family and friends. It will be time well spent and you will have plenty of time to catch up on your own chores later.
6. SAY ENCOURAGING WORDS
Today’s world is absorbed in negativity. It seems that nothing is ever good enough and the things people do often come up just short of perfect. Instead of dwelling on everything people do wrong, use your voice to tell them what they are doing right and encourage them to continue working towards their goals.
7. SHARE A HUG OR A HANDSHAKE
The power of touch is unique. Sharing a hug or a hand shake can be a powerful but simple way to show compassion. Once social distancing is over, make an effort to utilise hugs and handshakes in a variety of situations to show others that you care. At the moment this can only be done with your immediate family who live with you!
8. INCORPORATE THE PHRASE “THANK YOU” INTO YOUR DAILY ROUTINE
Manners matter! We often have a tendency to believe that our gratefulness for any given act is implied, but the reality of the situation is that our thankfulness for most things in life is left unspoken. Incorporate the phrase “thank you” into more of your routine activities. Thank the receptionist at the hair salon for her time, a teacher for their classroom efforts, or a child for their desire to learn. Gratitude is something that should never be left unspoken.
9. OFFER TO HELP SOMEONE WITH THEIR TO-DO LIST.
To-do lists seem to be endless, however as the saying goes, many hands make light work. Volunteer to help someone out with his or her list of chores. Ticking any task off that list will feel like a great accomplishment.
10. NURTURE RELATIONSHIPS BY TAKING TIME TO LISTEN TO OTHERS.
Sometimes, the easiest way to build a relationship can be done simply by listening. Make an effort to just listen to what others have to say around you. Contribute to the conversation, but try not to take it over. It is easy to be the only person talking in a situation, it is much more difficult to listen to the contributions of others.
These 10 small ideas help to exemplify what compassion is all about. I challenge you to try them out with your family and share your experiences with us. By showing a little more compassion, our world will be a happier place for all of us.
We wish you all a happy weekend.
Emma and William
Very well done to all these Pre-Prep children who received GOLDEN TREE AWARDS this week.
Max A: for being so grown up coming into school in the mornings with a big smile.
Oliver S: for being very kind and offering to help his friends in lots of ways this week.
Willow C: Willow loves the company of her friends. She organizes many of the games that they play, always ensuring that everyone is included and happy.
Florence W-B: Florence spends a happy day at Kindergarten and is always busy. She is generous in her friendships, often assisting others who have a problem.
Harriet J: Harriet has recently turned four and she now does lots of grown-up things. She shares her toys and this makes her friends happy.
Lex B: Lex spends a busy day at Kindergarten and enjoys the company of his friends. He now tries to “give it a go” when confronted with new things.
Elliott B: for excellent first split digraph work and super word writing.
Zeth A: for being such a good friend and playing with everybody in the class.
Annabelle B: for super number bond work this week.
Grace J: for knowing so much information about butterflies and caterpillars.
Oscar McD: for trying hard with his split digraph a-e work this week.
Eddie E: for a great effort in handwriting and in the overall presentation of all of his work.
Sanvir B: for excellent effort to complete and present his best work.
Henry B: for outstanding effort in English.
Louise R: for outstanding effort in Maths.
Aarohi K: for brilliant science work – creating her own planet called ‘Flower Land', with oxygen and lots of plants and trees.
Harry D: for excellent and creative work in science, designing a planet where the people and animals are made out of sweets and the surface of his planet is candy floss and liquorice.
William T: for an impressive landscape in the style of Lyora Pissaro.
Elijah F-J: for his lovely lighthouse acrostic poem and presenting it neatly.
Arthur J: for his hard work in English and for practising his letter formation and joined writing.
Toby I: for his great work on electrical safety in science.
Julia J: for her enthusiasm towards her lessons and working well across the curriculum.
Harry L: for entering the Wild About Nature competition and winning a prize.
Coco W: for writing a beautiful,descriptive acrostic lighthouse poem.
Toby M: for excellent comprehension work and taking time and care with the presentation of his work across the curriculum.
Cassian C: for beautifully presented work in all subjects and showing such enthusiasm in our Google Meet sessions.
Eleanor B: for singing so beautifully to us on Google Meet and always demonstrating such a polite attitude.
Sienna T: for entering the wild about nature competition and being awarded a prize for her story writing.
Richard C: for his independent research in Science on how light can be bent and also very pleasing extra work on adding and subtracting fractions.
Ellie-May J: for continued very pleasing effort in all subjects.
Eleni S: for extra independent English work including writing her own rhyming poem about The Three Little Pigs. Well done, Eleni!
Joanna H: for working hard in maths on parallel and perpendicular lines.
Ezrah H: for great work in RS identifying and describing places of Christian pilgrimage.
Aanya K: for writing an interesting report about horses.
Congratulations to these Prep School children who received awards this week.
HEAD MASTER'S COMMENDATIONS
Freddie C: for excellent science work.
Katie K: for continued great efforts with online learning.
Paul R: for excellent maths work.
Will F: for excellent effort in English.
Issey S: for her continued good manners and humour.
Isla M: for writing an epic letter for someone to read in the future about how she has found lockdown. Her letter was packed full of detail, information and emotion about her experiences of this time.
Toby C: for a huge improvement in his online organisation and for his excellent engagement in live sessions.
Nate M: for consistent online work and responding quickly to teachers' comments to further improve his work.
George H, Lily D & Tilly W: for excellent and extensive research on a UK town for Geography.
Ben I'A & Leah H: for always working hard and producing good work across all subjects.
James E, Bea A and Hari K-J: for their amazing poster of what they did at the weekend using the past tense in French.
Evie C, Charlie H, Ben I'A, Sam P and Tabitha P: for their French posters about daily routine.
Alex L, Ethan F-G, Henry B, Jennifer W, James E, Owen H, Thomas K, Bea A, Summer E and Kobe L for fantastic work completed in science on the topic of sound.
Sam P and Charley W: for completing some excellent research on a town in the UK.
Sofia B: for completing a brilliant presentation on India in geography.
SPIRIT OF ST GEORGE’S AWARDS
Lara H, Andreas L and Matilda UI for outstanding effort, commitment and attitude during online learning.
Loic C: for planning and organising a quiz for Year 5 each week, helping everyone stay connected at weekends.
Charlie H: for thoughtfulness in nominating Loic for a SoSTA.
Year 5 and 6 chose to raise money for the World Wildlife Fund as part of their St George's Award and their fundraiser took place on Wednesday afternoon. They held a sponsored silence on Google Meet for 20 minutes, followed by by 30 minutes of continuous exercise such as trampolining, keepie-ups, walking up and downstairs, cycling and tennis. They finished the challenge by doing household chores including hoovering, dusting, laundry and gardening. Some parents were especially pleased with this part of the challenge!
Early last month Loïc C performed a 2.6 Challenge by being blindfolded for 2.6 hours! In doing so, he managed to raise £175 for his chosen charity, the Great Ormond Street Hospital. Well done Loïc!
Noah N-C held a charity car wash to raise money for Shooting Star Children’s Hospices. Well done, Nicholas!
Alma and Luca S gave a concert for the NHS key workers who have been staying at Eton College during the lockdown.
Debate at Canford School
This week Noah N-C and Carl A represented St George's in a virtual debate organised by the Head of English at Canford School. The motion proposed by Noah and Carl was 'This house fears the decline of the US as a global superpower.' They spoke convincingly and with conviction and we are very proud of them. They were awarded joint runners-up, in a very close competition with only four points difference between the top three teams.
This event was part of the 'post CE enrichment' programme for our Year 8s. They have all made a great start to this and have all been involved in activities and talks, as well as the Canford event yesterday.
One of the few benefits of being at home during the lockdown has been lots more time to spend with family pets.
Staying safe in school
The smiles on their faces of our younger children show how happy they are to be with their friends, even at a distance! We are so looking forward to seeing everyone back in school again!
Year 1 have been looking at the weather and thunder and lightning this week. They blew up balloons and rubbed them on their hair to create static electricity. It was great fun!
Cooking and Baking
It's very obvious that cooking and baking have become activities of choice for STG children. Year 2 have been trying out a cooking recipe each week and last week the recipe was scones. This week the recipe has been strawberry cheesecake and they have learnt about strawberries, and have appreciated summer fruit in PSHE.
Children in older year groups tried their hand at other recipes, such as Mrs Furnell's baked eggs, pizza cooked outside and cake baked in (or out of) a mug. We loved the sushi chef's outfit, Isla M! Hope the sushi was as good!
The Year 3 science topic is light and the children were asked to produce a poster to encourage children to wear reflective clothing at night when biking / walking so that they are easily seen.
More Amazing Nature Photos
Once again STG children have enjoyed 'going wild' and have discovered all sorts of creatures in their gardens and on their outdoor adventures.
Hidden Hero Head Chef!
Our Head Chef Andy Pitsillis, who joined St George's in 2003, has been putting a smile on the faces of our 'Key Worker Gang' during the lockdown and the children who have now returned to school. He has used the opportunity to try out lots of tempting new recipes and treats which have delighted children and staff alike. He has been nominated 'Hidden Hero' by Sodexo for his creativity and passion during this time. We would like to thank Andy and our Catering Manager, Olivia Merkett, for striving to make the dining experience as consistent and enjoyable as possible for everyone.
This Week's Podcast
This week Mr Wilson interviewed Mrs Jo Milne, an author and motivational speaker, who was born with Usher Syndrome. In the podcast she talks about overcoming being born profoundly deaf, hearing for the first time at the age of 39 (her video went viral with 12 million views) and how she is now facing the prospect of losing her sight.
SOuL Outdoor Learning
This week Mrs Onions recommends the QR-IQ video, a challenging activity that combines navigation, clue finding and maths. It can be done indoors, outdoors or a combination of both and involves finding hidden clues via QR codes and then piecing them together to solve a maths puzzle. It can also involve creating maps of the working area in which the clues are hidden. It is suitable for one or two children in a small home setting or can be scaled up to provide a great team-building and communication activity for the whole family!
Next week is National Boarding Week and the STG boarders (and boarding staff!) are being encouraged to take part from home in one or more of the BSA challenges. These are a 2k run; a charity challenge; a kindness challenge; a press-up challenge; a keepie uppie challenge; a bake-off and a book challenge (followed by a 244 character book review). Boarders are requested to send before, during and after photos, videos and book reviews to Mrs Onions at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The answers to last week's quiz going from left to right are: Windsor Castle, Balmoral, Buckingham Palace, Sandringham House, St James’s Palace, Hampton Court, Osborne House, Kensington Palace.
There are over 50 species of butterflies in the UK. Do you know the names of these common ones? Two of them were sent into Connected last week.