Newsletter 30th November 2018

From the Head

Firstly, a huge thank you to everyone who supported the FRSC Christmas Fayre last Saturday. Despite the rain it was the busiest Fayre yet and I am delighted to inform you that we raised an amazing £5,500 on the day! Special thanks to all the parents and friends who gave of their time to prepare, plan, set up, help on the day and clean up afterwards; your support as always is greatly appreciated

I do love this time of year! As the EYFS and Lower School children came into school on Monday morning, dressed in their costumes ready to perform their Christmas plays, I felt that Christmas had truly arrived at St Olave’s. The children performed their dress rehearsals on Monday to the rest of the school and, the children in the Upper School came out feeling nostalgic about their own Christmas plays. Many of them were singing along with the songs and all commented on how well the younger children had performed. It is testament to the hard work and talent of our wonderful staff who have given the children such confidence to perform on stage; not an easy thing to do with such young children. In fact, a couple of the children seemed even more confident on stage than they do in the classroom, which is wonderful to see!

On Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday, you had the opportunity to see your children and it was wonderful to see our budding actors treading the boards with such poise. Thank you all for attending and bringing other family members along too; it is always nice to receive such positive feedback from parents and friends of St Olave’s, which is always passed on to the staff.

Many congratulations to our Year 3 and Year 4 pupils who sang so beautifully in Passey Place, Eltham High Street in aid of Demelza on Tuesday this week. The organisers were very impressed with the high standard you achieved and there were many positive comments. We will be holding a retiring collection in aid of Demelza after our Carol Service and they will be in touch in the New Year with a final amount raised.

As part of our Emotional Wellbeing and Mental Health Week (14th-18th January 2019) we are thrilled to have arranged an evening talk for parents. “Who suggested that being a parent is easy?”

Dick Moore will be coming to St Olave’s on Tuesday 15th January 2019 to talk to parents about child and adolescent mental health. The talk will take place at 7pm - 8.30pm in the school hall.

Dick, the parent of four children and a headmaster for almost 23 years, embarked upon a mission to discover more about what makes young people tick and what he could or should have done during the challenging times. He has a passion for child and adolescent mental health and wellbeing and will be exploring how young people think, why childhood is an especially vulnerable time and about common issues which can arise when the going gets tough.

Finally, he will offer some tongue in cheek tips for parenthood! He has spoken at over 300 schools, universities, businesses and conferences both in the UK and overseas. He also gave a TED talk in April 2015, has appeared on BBC Breakfast, BBC Radio 5 Live and ITN News with Mary Nightingale and comes highly recommended by many local schools who have heard him speak to pupils, staff and parents.

Please note this talk is just for parents; Dick will be talking to pupils in Year 5 and 6 during the day.

Please save the date, Dick really is an informative, engaging speaker tackling a subject of huge importance to everybody within our school community. In order to finalise arrangements, we will shortly be sending out a Google form for you to indicate whether you can attend so that we have an idea of numbers for an event that we anticipate will be hugely popular.

Have a lovely weekend; I am going to attempt to decorate my Christmas tree tomorrow…! I look forward to seeing you all next week.

Kind regards, Miss Holloway


Match Funding

Many large companies offer match funding benefits to employees - where they match a figure your chosen charity raises - up to £700 per time. We'd love to hear from anyone whose company offers this benefit, as we are a registered charity and could therefore increase the revenue from the events we run enormously. If just a handful of parents stepped forward it would make a massive difference. Your HR department will be able to confirm if your company participates in the scheme - most large banks do, as well as other sectors.

Volunteers Needed!

Please see any member of the FRSC or Mrs Farrell on the gate if you would like to find out more. Anyone willing to offer help, services or donations, please see Mrs Farrell for further information.

The Giving Machine

Remember, when you are buying Christmas presents online you can generate a free cash donation for us just by clicking via www.TheGivingMachine.co.uk. You’ll find over 2,200 of the most popular stores, so it’s easy for you to make a difference without it costing you a penny more than the normal purchase price of your item. Your shopping has already raised nearly £100 for St Olave’s so please remember to shop through this link whenever you are shopping online!

St Olave’s School Trust on TheGivingMachine: https://www.thegivingmachine.co.uk/causes/st-olaves-school-trust-266085

Photos of ‘The Inn-Spectors’ by The Lower School

Year 6

Year 6 are starting to feel Christmassy! Monday began with having the privilege of watching the Nursery and Reception Christmas Play dress rehearsal followed by the Lower School Christmas Play dress rehearsal, we were all very impressed with how the children had learnt their lines, spoke clearly and acted wonderfully. Well done EYFS and the Lower School! We then went to Foots Cray Rugby and Athletic Club for our games lessons. The children played Tag Rugby, Football and Hockey as well as having a dance lesson. They all played extremely well, showed good sportsmanship and showed kindness to each other.

The children had another ‘life saving’ swimming lesson on Tuesday which involved learning how to deal with someone who has fallen through ice. The children do not need their old clothes next week as we will be practising for the Year 5 & 6 Swimming Gala (which is on Tuesday 18th December). The other half of the year group were extremely happy to have their bread making workshop with Gill from the Bread House on Wednesday and again went home with delicious loaves of bread - some of the children have even made a loaf at home.

Continuing with the Christmas theme, on Thursday the children carried out an investigation to test the strength of various Christmas wrapping paper, they were all surprised that the paper bought from the ‘Scouting community’ was the strongest rather than John Lewis or M&S. Even with all of these Christmas activities going on, some of the children are still preparing for their 11+ entrance exams, we are all very proud of them for their resilience and determination to knuckle down and work hard, keep it up - only a few weeks to go! They will be bringing home the test papers that they have completed this week to look over at the weekend.

Part of the Year 6 weekend homework this weekend is to buy, decorate or make their own Christmas Hat for our Christmas Lunch on Wednesday (this is also Christmas Jumper Day) and for our Carol Singing visit to Frognal House on Thursday. Book bags are not needed on Friday due to our Panto visit.

Year 5

On Tuesday we shared examples of ‘random acts of kindness’ we have already carried out. It was great to hear such a range of kind deeds from helping parents tidy away dirty plates to giving feedback to a restaurant in the form of a review! After sharing our ideas, we thought of five brand new acts of kindness that we would like to do during December. Many of the children wanted to start doing these straight away! It was lovely to hear such kind ideas.

We are coming to the end of our maths topic, Statistics. After learning about finding one set of data in a table, we moved on to reading and interpreting two-way tables. The children also found missing values and solved problems related to the two-way tables they were given. It has been a very enjoyable topic and the children have worked hard to solve many challenges where they needed to interpret data.

During English this week, the children have been writing formal letters to Liam offering him advice as to whether he should allow Florida to go to space or if he should tell the truth and admit that he isn’t really her father. After we had analysed and annotated a modal, we discussed what features we would expect to see in each section of our letter and created a steps to success checklist. The children have been focussing on modal verbs and relative clauses and have been applying them within their writing. We have been very impressed by their application of their new knowledge.

In our IPC Science lesson with Mr Schaller this week, we finished making our very own rockets. We spent time making adaptations to our final designs, including the addition of extra fins and making our rockets smaller or larger. We then walked to our local park and experimented with them to find out which rocket would stay in the air for the longest. The rockets were fantastic, with many shooting straight up into the air (a near miss with a seagull!) and lingering there for quite some time. Others were less fortunate with their design, with some exploding on take off! Either way, we had a fantastic time celebrating the end of our IPC space topic!

Part of the Year 5 weekend homework this weekend is to buy, decorate or make their own Christmas Hat for our Christmas Lunch on Wednesday (this is also Christmas Jumper Day) and for our Carol Singing visit to Frognal House on Thursday. Book bags are not needed on Friday due to our Panto visit. Thank you.

Year 4

Year 4 have very much enjoyed getting into the Christmas spirit this week watching not one, but two, superb performances by our younger children in a dress rehearsals for their shows. They were fabulous audience members and it was wonderful to see them congratulating the younger children in the playground afterwards.

Tuesday saw the Christmas preparations continue as we made the short bus journey to Eltham High Street to sing carols to help fundraise for Demelza Hospice. The children did the school proud with not only wonderful singing, but impeccable behaviour on our journeys there and back again. Thank you very much to all the parents, family members and friends who came to watch.

We have spent some time discussing kindness this week, the importance of being kind to others and what this looks like both in school and at home. The children were able to give excellent examples of being kind and we took the opportunity to discuss how its makes us all feel when we do something nice for someone else. The children all agreed that it is a wonderful feeling to make someone else smile and we will be continuing to check in on their acts of kindness throughout the month of December.

In keeping with St Olave’s tradition, Year 4 will be singing a French carol at the Christmas Carol Service on 18th December. We have started learning our carol this week, and it would be wonderful if you could support the children in practising this at home (as it is quite a tricky one). Thank you.

Our home learning this weekend continues our Christmas theme - it is to make their own Christmas hat for our Christmas lunch on Wednesday (which is also our Christmas jumper day). Please remember that bags are not needed on Friday due to our trip to see the Panto in Greenwich!

Year 3

This week saw a variety of celebrations from different cultures enter our lives in Year 3. On Monday, Daniel told us about Hanukkah, the Jewish festival of Light, which was very informative...and tasty, when he revealed a huge number of doughnuts to be consumed. Happy Hanukkah!

Then on Tuesday, we had the excitement of a bus journey to Eltham followed by carol singing in Passey Place. The children enjoyed both of these elements and the audience in Eltham were very appreciative of the children’s efforts.

In our maths work, we have encountered some challenging examples within subtraction but the children have shown excellent resilience to work through such problems. In fact, the same is true for other difficult areas such as reading comprehension. It seems that the children are becoming used to dealing with the “Learning Pit” and how to leave it!

Our IPC work on Sound and Light has continued with an investigation on pitch. We had four bottles; one was empty, one a quarter full, another half full and the fourth three quarters full. We all made a prediction as to which would make a high / low sound. ask your mini scientist the results and see if they can remember the science behind it!

Our home learning this weekend is for the children to make their own Christmas hat for our Christmas lunch on Wednesday (which is also our Christmas jumper day). Please remember that bags are not needed on Friday due to our trip to see the pantomime in Greenwich. The tentative return time for this trip is 5.15pm, but traffic delays may make this later.

Have a great weekend!

Year 2

The children had a fantastic time on their trip to Temper Temper Chocolate in Tunbridge Wells last Friday and enjoyed reminiscing and writing about their adventure this week. The children learned about the ingredients in milk, dark and white chocolate and were given the opportunity to sample a new chocolate which only came to the UK in the summer. ‘Ruby’ chocolate is very expensive and hasn't made it into many shops yet! It is made from ruby cocoa beans found in Ecuador, Brazil and the Ivory Coast. It has a very sweet fruity taste and the children felt very special to be able to taste this new chocolate! The children also created some scrumptious treats which we hope you enjoyed tasting. The trip linked with our topic ‘You Are What You Eat’ and allowed the children to understand that quality chocolate in moderation is part of a balanced diet and even has some health benefits.

This week, the children have been thinking about kind acts that they can carry out throughout advent. Many children have been coming to school in the morning keen to share the kind acts that they have done at home. We have looked at the work of the Red Cross and the children have learned that kindness can make a big difference. An act of kindness, no matter how small, can make a person’s day. The children have picked five personal acts of kindness that they would like to achieve in the run up to Christmas. The children’s smiles get bigger and bigger as they tick off the goals on their lists and they have come to realise that being kind not only makes the recipient very happy but also gives us a warm feeling inside!

We are sure you will agree that the Year 1 and 2 children were amazing when performing their Christmas nativity, ‘The Inn-spectors’ on Monday and Tuesday. The children had worked hard learning lines, dances and songs, and performed with real joy and enthusiasm. Thank you for your support in helping the children with their parts and providing such lovely costumes. We were very proud of the children and our Christmas elves were also very impressed! In fact, they left the children chocolate buttons to enjoy as a special treat on Wednesday!

Year 1

We welcomed two elves to Year 1 on Monday, 1Mc have Elvis the Elf and 1M have Eddie the Elf. They have been sent to our classrooms to catch the children being kind and to keep an eye on them in the lead up to Christmas. They congratulated the children on their performance of ‘The Inn-Spectors’ We were so proud of all the children. They sang beautifully, danced with huge smiles and acted their parts with confidence. Thank you all for coming and supporting your children to learn their lines and providing such fantastic costumes!

During our English lessons this week, the children have been exploring the theme of diversity. All the children have written acrostic poems based on this theme as part of a competition run by Premier League Primary Stars. This has linked really well with our PSHEE topic this term ‘Celebrating Difference.’ The children were excited to learn that their poems will be judged by footballer Rio Ferdinand, singer and songwriter Olly Murs and Children’s Laureate Lauren Child.

In maths, we have been consolidating their learning of addition and subtraction by giving the children a problem solving and reasoning activity. They worked in groups of 2 or 3 to read the problems and to think of the calculations required in order to solve them. They used some of the strategies they have been taught this term, including the part whole model, number fact families and writing the correct calculation to match the number story.


What fantastic performances of our EYFS Nativity ‘The innkeepers breakfast’. We are very proud of all the EYFS children.

On Monday morning we welcomed two new members to Reception. They have travelled a long way from Father Christmas’ workshop and each day they have found new hiding places and left new challenges for the children. So far the children have made snowflakes and decorated capes for the elves’ friends and we can’t wait to see what else the elves leave for us.

The story of Harvey Slumfenburger’s Christmas Present has inspired our writing this week. The children were impressed with Father Christmas’s resilience and his determination to deliver the presents even when the going gets tough.


The highlight of the week has to be the children’s brilliant performances of our nativity “The Innkeeper’s Breakfast”. They were absolute superstars, singing and acting on three consecutive days. We are so very proud of each and every one of them!


Christmas Fayre

Congratulations to the class with the most jars, and therefore Golden Ticket winners, 4OS (54), and best decorated jar winners; Gabriella, RSJ, Sofia 2DS, Jack, 3A, and Felix 6M. All the jars were very well decorated, and the judges had a very hard job.

Pet Club

We were visited this week by a very young animal - Roman, a 10 week old French Bulldog puppy. He has “blue” fur and blue eyes. Mrs Swaden told us that, just like children, it is very important that he cleans his teeth every day. Roman has lots of toys - his favourite is a ball, and he is already able to collect it and bring it back. He will be starting dog training classes after Christmas.

Roman was wearing a jumper as he is very young and it was a cold day. His visit to Pet Club meant that he had a lead on for the first time! He was very well behaved, and he let the children stroke him if they wanted to.

Thank you very much to Mrs Swaden for bringing Roman to Pet Club. We look forward to another visit next year so we can see how much he has grown and what he has learnt at dog training classes.

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