From the Headmaster:

I will confess that as I perused the school calendar prior to the start of this term, I did think that the first few weeks in particular would fly by.

As is often the case, January can be the month of good intentions not least when it comes to exercise. None of us at Park Hill should worry about not getting our steps in. Thursday was a perfect example. Years 2, 3 and 4 made their way very early to the Apple Store in the Bentalls Centre and had the store to ourselves at 9am (imagine that, the store to ourselves!)

What followed was a superb session exploring coding and various challenges before then heading back to school. I was also fortunate to join the Year 3 and 4 children for their Science lesson at Canbury School that afternoon. Both trips are explored in a little more detail in this edition of the Deerstalker.

Wine (and beer) and Food Pairing Evening

I would like to draw your attention to one of my favourite events from last academic year. Chef Leon is finalising his menu as is Charlotte from our local wine store - Wined Up Here for Friday February 2nd. The full details will be released on Monday, but it promises to be as memorable as last year and a perfect way to celebrate the start of February (and the end of dry January...) Please look out for the invite. I would also like to confirm that there will be a selection of beers to also complement the food for non-wine drinkers.

House Shout

Our next whole school assembly promises to be unmissable. The four houses are busy preparing their songs and moves to compete for the House Shout Cup. Expect a roar; expect to be knocked down (but you will get back up again), there will be some gold and you won’t be able to stop the feeling...

Thursday 1st February, 8.45am, don’t miss it! (We will also record the assembly and upload it to our YouTube channel).

I shall be attending the Apple Education Leadership Summit on Tuesday to share what we are doing at Park Hill and also to attend various seminars and workshops.

Yours sincerely,


PS - Just to whet your appetite for the wine and food evening, Chef Leon produced some remarkable meals this week -

Growing Microcobes

Well, the results are in. The least clean location is...

In their previous lesson, using Agaragar gel and petri dishes, the children, using a cotton bud dipped in distilled water swabbed various places around the school to collect bacteria. These locations included the door handle, floor, pencil and sink area to name but a few. These buds were then dipped into the gel and sealed.

I would strongly recommend washing your hands should you ever touch the bottom of you shoe as this location was by far the dirtiest place of all the locations tested. I won’t tell you whose shoe it was.

The image below shows that bacteria that grew in the space of just one week.

The children hypothesised as to why the floor wasn’t as dirty and recognised that the floor is cleaned regularly, whereas your shoe...

Bacteria under the microscope

We do enjoy an excellent relationship with Canbury School and this sort of experiment would not be permitted outside of a lab of such a standard or with the expertise of Mr. Stevenson.

Apple Store Visit

The children were given the challenge to build a bridge and then to code the Sphero to travel over the bridge. I think it is fair to say that the two Apple guru’s were delighted to challenge the children in a more advanced task than is normal due to the skills of our children with coding. As you can see, much fun was had by all!

Information from the Year Groups

Year 3 and 4 have had an action packed week. On Monday in Adventure School, they were learning how to use a Trangia safely along with testing our method by making hot chocolate. We also all had a go at two different methods of lighting fires with Mr Clarke and Mr Bond kindly sharing their expertise. An important lesson was learnt, that fire is only safe when under control and to always have an adult present in such situations.

In English we have started our myths and legends work, looking at Greek Mythology and learning about the different stories and their meanings and lessons learnt. Pandora’s box certainly brought up an interesting discussion.

In art we created a mural with the help of Year 2 in the dining room. We added a splash of colour and style with everyone creating and painting their own flower to great success.

An exciting trip to the Apple store was another highlight, certainly highlighted our children’s impressive coding knowledge and gave them the opportunity to work with a variety of robots.

Year 2 - This week the children have worked on improving and adding to their dragon stories. They have written descriptive paragraphs about their dragon and setting, and then started creating their stories using a story mountain. There are apparently many interesting problems that dragons can have.

Mathematics has been all about adding 3 digit numbers together, using column addition. The children have been learning to carry numbers and are now able to add 3, and in some cases 4, digit numbers together.

We enjoyed our trip to the Apple store and were learning more about coding Jimi robots, spheros, and even R2-D2.

Year 1 - This week we have been looking closely at homes for other creatures. At woodland school the children were challenged to create a safe, warm home which would keep their animal warm for an extended amount of time. The animal they had to keep warm on a very blustery afternoon was a hot water bottle. The Fox team were the most successful and learnt that we need to insulate using small to large materials in layers.

We wrote woodland pledges this week thinking about how we can protect our beautiful forests. Year 1 were surprised to learn just how important trees are for our survival.

Reception - RFollowing on from our topic ‘Food,’ Reception have been looking at what food makes us healthy and unhealthy. On Wednesday the children visited Kingston Market purchasing a fruit or vegetable of their choice. They were stunned by the amount of fruit and vegetables the market had to offer. “Wow look at all the colours” responded Jennifer. Reception loved looking at the array of fruits and vegetables, even learning new fruits such as lychee and plantain. “Oo bumpy” said Elena. “It looks like a banana” said Felix. Strawberries, apples, oranges, carrots and tomatoes were purchased amongst the children which they were excited about eating when arriving back to school.

Within Maths, the children have looked at money and used bingo money cards to learn the different coins. Reception were extremely confident when using their money at the market.

Linking to our Food topic, the children joined in with First steps and tried some delicious Turkish food cooked by Mrs Guniz. Thank you!

Second Steps - This week, Second Steps have been busy learning what starts the sound ‘d’. We started painting our dragon, in preparation for Chinese New Year, we got very messy! Our Baby Clinic has been very busy this week and we have all helped the babies. We learnt how to bath babies and how it is important to be gentle. Second Steps have been watching about a little girl growing who is now five months and has started teething! For cooking class this week, we made Banana Oats Muffins! In our Early Years assembly we learnt about honesty and why it is important to be honest. What another fantastic week!

First Steps - We would like to welcome Xiang Xiang, Lan Lan and Jack to first steps.

They are settling in very well and making friends already.

This week we have been focusing on the letter ‘C’. The children have been finding lots of items and toys beginning with this letter sound. Alfie found a car, James said ‘look I have a little cat’ and Hadi brought in his toy cat from home.

We have been revisiting our numbers from 0 to 10 using our rocket number cards to count up to a blast off and zooming round the classroom like a rocket.

We have been exploring our transport project more by making our own vehicles using squares, rectangles and circles. The children have created cars, aeroplanes and trucks. Gisele was so pleased with the aeroplane she made, showing it to all her teachers saying ‘I made truck’ holding up her art work.

Our home corner airport has been a huge success. The children have been sorting through the dressing up clothes deciding what they want to pack in their suitcase. We made an aeroplane by lining up the chairs & the children were taking turns to be the pilot. We have been using maps & an atlas to choose which countries they would like to fly to.

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

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.

Second Hand Uniform

For your information, we are no longer hosting sales. If you wish to request some second hand uniform please complete the Google Form:


We are in the process of developing a new website. We are hoping to reveal our new site in January 2018.

The grid calendar is back up and running, although we are still trying to publish 2018-2019 term dates and remove the 2016-2017, however they are in the grid calendar.


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, Wellington boots and coats are brought into school on the relevant day (regardless of the forecast) so that we maximise our use of Richmond Park.

After School Activities

Please note: all activities, clubs (including after- school and breakfast clubs and trips) will be charged through schoolmoney.

Spring Term club choices-

Created By
Park Hill


Alistair Bond

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