Pre-Prep Blog Archive

New Pre-Prep Family Members

Monday, September 25, 2017 by Claire Luckhurst

As we continue to think about what we need for happy school adventures we welcomed two new members to our Pre-Prep family in assembly this week.

Work Hard Foxy knows that he's good at reading and art but isn't good at maths. He tries hard in those subjects but thinks he's not very clever in maths lessons. He doesn't try and when he gets stuck he says, "It's really hard."

Work-It-Out Wiz believes that if you put in effort, you can get better at everything. He tries hard in all

subjects, even in subjects that he struggles with. He knows the magical power of the word ‘yet’.

Each class was then given their very own version of these important characters to look after in their classrooms. I hope they will be a great visual and tactile reminder for times when they are finding something difficult in class and will begin to help them develop their understanding of the difference between finding something hard and giving up and having a growth mind-set that reminds them anything can be achieved with perseverance.

I can’t wait to see what happens!

The Magic of Mistakes

Monday, September 18, 2017 by Claire Luckhurst

In today’s assembly we added another ingredient to our recipe for a happy and successful school adventure: making mistakes. We learnt that mistakes are ‘magical’ because they help us learn so much. I told the children that I have probably made millions of mistakes in my life and continue to make at least one or two every day. I also told them that sometimes this can make me feel frustrated and grumpy and want to ‘give up’ but then I remember that if I do that I won’t be ‘exercising my brain’ and then won’t ‘grow clever’.

It is so important that our children learn the value of mistakes and that they know adults make them too. As teachers we can have such a powerful influence of showing the children in our care that we too can make the wrong decision, or forget things or admit that we ‘don’t know’ the answer to every question but that it is ok. We can also show them through our words and actions how we overcome the mistakes we make so we learn from them. It is true that many very young children believe wholeheartedly that their teachers know everything and that they really do ‘have eyes in the back of their head’; that we are all as omniscient as Mary Poppins. As much as it is a lovely feeling to be held in such high esteem it is an even lovelier feeling to know that by dispelling this myth we are laying the foundations of honesty, perseverance, resilience and curiosity.

Growing Clever

Monday, September 11, 2017 by Claire Luckhurst

As the second week of our adventures in our new classrooms begins we spent time in this morning’s assembly reflecting on the ingredients for a happy, successful adventure in the days, weeks and months ahead.

We decided the first thing we need are good teachers and friends who can help us when things go wrong and cheer us up if we are feeling sad or angry or worried. We ticked this ingredient off the list pretty quickly as we know we have lots of these around us every day.

The second thing we need are rules to follow so we all stay safe. We were able to tick this off the list too as we have our six Golden Rules to follow and our Values characters to remind us of why they are important.

Thirdly we thought about our muscles which led to lots of confused faces as to why these might be the final ingredient. The children all knew our muscles keep us strong and healthy and agreed it was important to exercise them to make them grow. They also knew that if we didn’t exercise them they would not grow. We then watched a video that likened our brains to a muscle. We learned that anyone can be clever if they exercise their brain enough and keep trying even when things get difficult. We decided we would all try really hard to not give up on things that may seem tricky at first because with the help of our teachers and friends and a determination to succeed the tricky things will soon become much easier.

It is so important to teach children from an early age that, with hard work and determination, anything is possible and so encourage a ‘growth mindset’. In Pre-Prep we are conscious to always remind the child who says they ‘can’t’ do something that they can’t do it yet but if they really want to then eventually they will be able to. In this way we can be confident our children are ‘growing clever’ and will be building the attitude needed to flourish in later years.

Welcome back!

Monday, September 4, 2017 by Claire Luckhurst

As the dawn of a new academic year sits on the horizon I find myself thinking about what lies ahead over the coming days, weeks, months and terms. The cycle of a school year is a fairly familiar thing and has permanent fixed markers along the way that measure the seasons and provide the security of much needed routine for staff, parents and children alike. However it is the ‘unknown’ that is most exciting; the feeling of being at the start of a new journey which has unlimited possibilities to explore and discover. As the ‘doors’ opened again this morning to welcome the children and their parents back to Pre-Prep, I am really looking forward to watching all of their journeys begin and develop and know when we reach the end of this academic year I will equally enjoy reflecting on where their journeys took them.

In assembly this morning we thought about how today was both an exciting and slightly nervous time owing to most things being so familiar and yet different all at the same time. For most children, who are continuing their journeys from last year, they know the environment very well but need to get used to their new teachers and their new classrooms. I compared it to their shiny new shoes and their old comfortable (if somewhat less shiny) shoes they wore last year. It can take a little while for our new shoes to ‘fit’ comfortably but once they do they will be just as comfortable as the ones we used to wear.

I hope everyone in our Pre-Prep family finds their ‘comfortable’ fit as soon as possible and that every journey has some exciting signposts, detours and adventures to celebrate, learn from and enjoy as we embark on another exciting year!

​The Time has come to Move Along!

Monday, July 3, 2017 by Claire Luckhurst

It is with enormous pride (and a very big sentimental lump in my throat) that I wish our fantastic Year 2 children the very best of luck as they leave our Pre-Prep nest and fly away to their new adventures at the end of this week. They have been a wonderful group of children who have each contributed to our community in their own special ways and shall be genuinely missed by all the staff who have guided and nurtured their journeys to this point. The last few weeks have seen them immersed in rehearsals for the Summer Show and I cannot fault their commitment to working as a team to make it an incredible performance. Leading the Summer Show is an honour bestowed upon Year 2 each year as it is in many ways the finale and culmination of their time in Pre-Prep. They all have speaking parts and their time on stage is significantly greater than anyone else’s. This brings a great lesson in responsibility for them as they know the success of the show lies in their hands and will depend on how well they work together. I have been most impressed with the swiftness at which they learned lines, the natural acting talent that lies within many of them and of their confidence in contributing their own ideas for stage direction and choreography. I have no doubt they will make us all proud on Thursday morning.

The end of this week will also mark the end of a journey for many Pre-Prep families. I have had the pleasure of seeing some of these children grow from ‘bumps’ into the confident, happy children they are today. The relationships we build with the families of the children are so important and I believe this is something we do well. I would like to thank all the families who have come to the end of their Pre-Prep journey for the loyalty, support and friendship they have shown to us over the duration of their child’s time with us.

I, and all the Pre-Prep staff, look forward to watching the children continue to bloom in Prep after a very well-deserved summer holiday!

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