| Head's Blog

When you have confidence, you can have a lot of fun. And when you have fun, you can do amazing things. - Joe Namath.

After half a term to settle into their new classes, and adapt to the greater expectations of moving into a higher form, Year 4 were first to start off this term’s programme of year group assemblies to parents. At 9 o’clock on Tuesday, there was consequently an air of great anticipation inside the Cedar Hall, as parents waited for their children to enter, and the assembly to begin. This was matched only by the excitement of the Year 4 children waiting outside, as props were found, and last minute mini-rehearsals were whispered, prior to the grand entrance! What nerves before, but what confidence then shone through. Many of the parents talked afterwards about the wonderful stage presence and assurance of all the children, as they demonstrated skills in gym routines, singing, acting and, of course, in public speaking and self-confidence which parents commented was impressive in children so young. The ability to command an audience, which will be increasingly important in the world of work, is promoted through the wide range of performance opportunities which our curriculum offers; the children’s enjoyment of the drama aspects of our recently introduced Talk4 Writing initiative, is just one example.

‘Confidence’ was also the theme of the mathematics workshop for parents given by our newly-established Middle Leadership Team last week. As Heads of Upper School, Lower School and Early Years, Miss Williams, Mrs James and Miss Loat respectively, demonstrated the progression of skills journey taken by the children in mathematics, starting in Reception, where much of the work is concerned with the development of concrete skills through the use of exploration and practical equipment, right the way through to the increasing use of formal methods within the Upper School. The confidence to apply knowledge to differing contexts, built upon a secure knowledge of number relationships and how they can be operated, is key to progress in maths. Parents clearly found the demonstrations and examples of the varying approaches taught by the school to be extremely helpful, and it was wonderful to see adult confidence growing, as the workshop continued!

This week has also seen the celebration of Diwali. Again, confidence was much in evidence as a group of mums and their children talked to the whole school about the main beliefs and ideas of the festival. Starting with an explanation of the story of Rana and Sita, the children also sang and danced, their assured grasp of their cultural stories and heritage being wonderful to see.

It has been a very rewarding week for us all as staff, during which we have been so proud of the children’s ability to express themselves with confidence and ‘joie de vivre.’ How lucky will their future employers be.

Heather Hopson-Hill, Head Teacher