From the Headmaster:
A 6 minute 3 second glance back at what has been a highly successful, hugely enjoyable and rather interesting Autumn Term...
I was reminded, indeed it came at the right time for me this week, by someone who commented on how happy Park Hill children are and ‘how full of smiles’ they all are. I was finally able to sit and reflect on those comments yesterday evening. We are so very fortunate to work with children, their natural curiosity and ebullience can cure even the most ‘Scrooge like’ of characters. I also realised that the remarkable efforts from colleagues to ensure that our children are protected and insulated from what can be a diet of less than cheery or positive news is working. I will not hold back on my praise of our entire team in the final assembly on Thursday, but we are also a wider team. Park Hill is a family. All pulling in the same direction for the simple and sincere best interests of our children. It can be all too easy to be distracted by the strains and stresses of life from what is actually important.
I hope you enjoy the video. Enjoy the smiles. Don’t forget to throw those curtains wide this weekend, even if your face is chamois creased....
Really enjoy your weekend. Let’s hope for some good matches this weekend and some good old fashioned running rugby to bring a smile to my chamois.
As a reminder, term dates can be uploaded to your device from the school calendar page of our website. Without getting too ahead of ourselves, the key dates for Christmas are as follows -
Last day of term - Friday 11th December, 12.30pm (for both nursery and school) for staff training.
Nursery closed - 6pm Wednesday 23rd December.
Whole school, including nursery - start of term 8am, Wednesday 6th January 2021.
We do our very best to return items, do please ensure that al belongings are labelled.
Amber - Grey school jumper
Georgina - Black sports top
For the last week of term (w/c 7th December) Autumn term clubs i.e. Creative Arts, Sport squad, Drama club, Running club etc will not be taking place.
Prep Club will be going ahead as usual, however please note that as the school will be closing at 12.30 on Friday 11th December there will be no prep club on that particular day.
The start of the school day is crucial.
It sets the tone for the day and teachers view the start of the lesson as critical in ensuring learning objectives are achieved and realised. Arriving late to school is incredibly disruptive for all. I appreciate that buses and trains and traffic all play their part but we do need your help in ensuring the children gain the most from their school day and that they arrive by 8.30am. Late children must be signed in through the school office.
With all of our children throughout the school having made a terrific start to the school year, the gate will now close promptly at 8.30am.
Illness & Medical
We continue to abide with the DfE Regulations.
We ensure that anyone developing those symptoms during the school day is sent home.
These are essential actions to reduce the risk in schools and further drive down transmission of coronavirus (COVID-19).
We would like to remind you that if your child is absent from school due to sickness (vomiting, diarrhoea) they must be clear for at least 48 hours prior to returning to school. You must inform the school office directly on 020 8546 5496 if your child will be absent that day.
Mr Sims - Welfare and Compliance
It is always interesting to hear children refer to senior schools as ‘they are an academic school’ or ‘they are a sporty school’, or other such specific terms to describe what are in fact complex institutions which actually offer more functions that any one term or phrase could ever do justice to describe. It can be a daunting process to piece together a map for a child’s schooling journey, but quite often taking a step back and attempting to understand each individual child can be a great place to start before looking for answers to the question of which is the right senior school for any child. For a child who gleans much enjoyment and associates personal self to achievements in sports or performing arts, are they more likely to thrive academically in a school which is set up with one of these so say less academic subjects playing a prominent role in their school life? Almost without exception, looking after their pastoral needs is fundamental to any academic success.
Health, Safety and Medicines at School
Please note the following important points regarding the administration of medicines at school.
Further to recent recommendations and legislation we are no longer allowed to dispense any medicines to the children, with the exception of school provided Calpol, Waspeze and sun lotion and then only when you have signed the medical form agreeing to this procedure.
If your child is taking prescribed antibiotics or other drugs you are advised to adjust the timing to avoid school hours. You may wish to discuss this with your doctor at the time of prescription.
• Asthma: Children who take medication for asthma must have two named inhalers at school. One to be kept in the first aid kit in the classroom the other in the School Office. Please label clearly with your child’s name and hand personally to Miss Gambi.
• Epipens: Please provide two epipens for use in school when necessary; labelled clearly with your child’s name.
• Cough sweets (or any other sweets) are NOT allowed in school as they pose a potential choking hazard.
• Children with a temperature or diarrhoea and/or vomiting within the last day must be kept at home until clear of all symptoms for a minimum of 48 hours.
• Head lice - please remember to check your child's hair regularly.
• Contagious diseases: Please inform the school office immediately if your child has been diagnosed with any contagious disease eg: chicken pox, measles etc
• It is imperative that you inform the school, in writing (a quick note will suffice), of any medication your child has received, since midnight, before coming to school.
Thank you for your co-operation. We know you will appreciate that these procedures are for the benefit and safety of all your children.
The full uniform list can be found here.
Our Little Adventurers have been ‘adventuring’ once again this week...
Year 6 have never had a busier week. New challenging topics, a performance to record, a fascinating PSHCE lesson, and everything that a normal week has!
English saw the arrival of a our first new topic. We have begun our analysis of the poem, The Highwayman. Discovering that is was a narrative poem, the children set about rewriting it as a story, utilising the same description and adding additional information.
Maths first reintroduced lowest common multiples (LCM) and highest common factors (HCF), but then introduced a new challenge; to find the LCM of 3 numbers, and then 4. A lesson was well spent working this out.
Our PSCHE lesson this week was all about bullying, with some truly insightful questions, theories, and explanations. I was very impressed with Year 6s ability to consider multiple perspectives on events.
We finished this week with the filming of our performance. Year 6 were out and about and, I hope you agree on Thursday, performed brilliantly.
Christmas joy has been oozing through Year 5 this week, play rehearsals, filming and Christmas music has kept the festive spirit high.
In maths the children have been continuing their work on decimal numbers, more specifically converting fractions they are confident with into their decimal equivalent. One of the great things about being a teacher is seeing those eureka moments that happen when children join the gap between two separate pieces of knowledge with which they are confident, this provided one of these moments.
Rugby continues to be a source of great fun for the children. This week at Ditton Fields the children discussed different tactics on how to attack during a match and of course how to defend. The Year 5 Rugby Kicking competition is hotting up, the class record is up to 35 paces.
In a fast paced week that ended with a successful performance of the Christmas Lockdown play, Year Four Badgers can be proud of their exploits in drama as well others areas of the curriculum. I was very proud of how pupils learnt their lines and embraced the script they had all part written. Their singing should also be noted as they persevered with the business of performing the ‘snow’...I mean show!
It was a creative start on Monday as we ventured in to Richmond Park for a digital photography exploration of the natural forms that surrounded us. Children created imaginative compositions from a range of angles and using the functions available on the iPad to interpret the anthropomorphic shapes of trees, fallen logs and other natural materials.
On the theme of working outside I must give a mention to the great effort all pupils put in to playing Netball during their Sports lesson. Quick movement, thinking and passing were all vital skills used during some very evenly matched games, which for the neutral observer and referee was exciting to watch.
Inside the classroom Year Four have been plotting and coordinating plans this week. For our Maths lessons we have been focusing on the x and y of grids on which to place points with grid references. We delved in to negative numbers too as pupils overcame this particular axis of evil in order to plot coordinates to draw Christmas themed pictures.
Producing plans with precise directions informed much of our work in English this week as we produced detailed instructions for drawing pictures. Using accurate language with prepositions and imperative verbs ensured whoever followed these plans would create the desired picture to the correct scale and shape.
Thank you Year Four for all your hard work during this penultimate week before the Christmas holidays.
It’s a wrap! Well the week ended with a flurry of excitement with the filming of our Christmas production. Panto land was in full flow, with the ugly sisters fighting, Jack climbing the beanstalk and Sleeping Beauty, the prince with his nose put out of joint and a number of others . We really look forward to the finished piece which I am sure will be up for the odd Oscar! Along with rehearsals we also managed to fit in telling the time and some word problems too. In English we have enjoyed looking at a variety of Greek, Roman and Norse myths, making our own mythical creatures to build into our own myths next week.
In Humanities we have been learning about continents with a focus on Africa this week.
Well done, Year 3!
What a festive week, you can definitely tell that Christmas is coming in Year 2. In maths we have been looking at reading and Measuring with different measures such as CM, mm, and grams. We even started to measure the temperature in different places around school, so for Science the children worked in small groups to come up with an investigation to test different areas in school and the children had to decide how many times they were going to test, we all came up with predictions and the children are very excited to start there investigations next week. We are also going to link this next week into our maths to create our results table. In English we have done lots of festive writing, from a lost reindeer to Christmas poems. Friday was great fun and the children performed very well with their songs and lines. We can not wait to share the movie on Thursday with you.
Have a wonderful weekend.
Have a great weekend.
It’s officially Christmas... in Year 1!
We have been very crafty designing and making Christmas decorations. A highlight was exploring delicate homemade clay to make gingerbread men using a range of techniques, rolling small pieces to add detail and creating a slab for the gingerbread man upon which we added texture using clay tools.
Our class performance went exceptionally well on filming day and we all felt incredibly proud. It really was a cracking success! We cannot wait for you to see it next week.
During lessons this week we have developed both our Book Creator skills and our information writing skills to design information books about reindeer.
Did you know?
The reindeer is the only deer that both make and female deers have antlers. -James
Reindeers are called caribou in America. -Michael
Reindeers have fluffy fur and special hooves to walk on snow. -Mona
“They actually have red noses because they heat their noses.” - Emma and Arthur.
We have learnt about the Christmas story and thought about how Mary and Joseph must have felt at different moments on their journey.
For science (STEM) we learn about light and shadows by creating shadow puppets to tell a story. We started by creating depth with transparent parts and translucent colours and our next step would be to create moving parts. We set up a shadow theatre using everyday materials. Then explore how shadows are produced and how they change over the course of a day.
We have been building on our knowledge of 2D shapes to design and complete repeating patterns. Drawing 2D shapes is actually quite a tricky task .... you need good hand eye coordination and to remember to use a ruler for all the straight lines.
This week the Christmas cheer has continued! Tuesday morning we had a surprising visitor from a little elf who brought lots of Christmas joy into our class. He had turned part of our room into a Christmas workshop! Since then, the children have used this area to wrap little presents, post letters and count Santa’s cookies. Each day this week, little elf has surprised us by exploring different spaces. We’ve found him doing acrobats on the washing line, inside a wellie boot and reading stories. This has encouraged the children to write letters and draw pictures to the elf. We have also made little clay decorations which you’ll receive next week to decorate your Christmas tree.
Second Steps are well and truly full of the Christmas spirit. We have decorated our classroom to keep us festive.
The children have been keeping up all their hard work with their letters and sounds. We have been playing the ‘crocodile in the river’ game, they have to find the first letter of their name and then see if they can match up all the letters of their name to see if they have the right name.
All the children found their names and didn’t get eaten by the crocodile.
We have been reading about a selfish Elf who learnt how to work in a team while trying to take a selfie. We foolishly left an iPad out with Christmas hats and let the children experiment (supervised) trying on the hats and taking their own selfies.
As the rain was relentless on Thursday we made the most of it putting our wellies on and went puddle splashing, bad weather doesn’t stop us. We found a huge puddle and had so much fun then had rainy day games in the playground.
While making our Christmas cards we have seen great progress in the children’s fine motor skills and eagerness to write their own names.
The children performed so well for the Christmas production. They sung so nicely and looked amazing in their Christmas jumpers and wearing reindeer antlers, Santa and Elf hats.
Just a little note to say that Miss Vari hasn’t eaten all the mince pies, she is happily expecting a baby.
Have a nice weekend!
Miss Finch & Miss Vari
Our little stars shone again this week. The children practised singing Twinkle Twinkle Little Star for our Christmas production.
We practised wrapping presents at home corner to help Santa where children had chance to improve their cutting and sticking skills. While wrapping the presents, we discussed what children want to get from Santa. Dollies, dinosaurs and trains were children’s the most popular answers. Hopefully, it might help our parents if they still haven’t decided on Christmas presents.
Decorating a Christmas tree is one of the important life skill and the children excelled at it at outdoor area this week. We used shredded paper to create snowy atmosphere and some decorations for children to improve their fine motor skills.
Listening “Baby Jesus” story led children retelling the story to their friends and teachers at sensory tray with help of props.
We practised our mathematical skills while wrapping the presents at home corner. Measuring the wrapping papers and boxes, placing them in the correct place and comparing their weight were some of the activities that were taking place.
In PE lesson, children improved their jumping and crawling skills by playing different games with hoops and balls.
Science session gathered all the children’s attention when they used water to find hiding pictures on paper towels.
Have a nice weekend!
Mrs Guniz Mrs Mousi