6th November 2020
by Justin Chippendale
I hope that heading into Lockdown 2.0 doesn’t cause too many problems for you. Given that schools are staying open, lockdown for me won’t feel too different. I will still be going to work obviously, I don’t very often head into town to browse high street shops and visits to the pub are a rarity. What I will miss though is the chance to have friends round for supper etc. We have a couple of diary entries that will need to be cancelled, sadly.
Our intention remains to see the glass as half full and keep as much of our usual routine and as many of the experiences that make up life at King’s Hall in play – and for the children, actually, it means almost all of it.
We shall still be having our Remembrance service on the 11th at 11am and last night we had a scaled down fireworks display for the boarders - a very quick snippet can be found on Twitter. (Can’t deny that this evening would have been a perfect, chilly, clear night to have had the usual big show with all the families here, though – ho hum.)
Next week we also have a Children in Need fundraiser from the Pupil Council (see later in the Newsletter) and further ahead, Year 8 plays, nativities, the Carol Service, remembering St Nicolas and other Christmas celebrations are all being retained in some form or another.
It is worth noting, that the children are still going to academic lessons, still working hard and making good progress – this is, after all, a core activity in schools and where they spend the majority of their time in a day! There are some exams coming up for some of the older pupils (Year 7 next week) and I do know that they are generally applying themselves sensibly to be able to give a good showing of their abilities. It is always nice to see children with HMCs for simply working hard consistently. I remind the children fairly often, it is cool to work hard – and it certainly makes life easier when you know you have given your best to the key tasks.
I have deliberately not commented in a big way on the US Election here (it’s hard to find any current affairs stories beyond Covid and the US Election at present) but I do want to share the comment of a child: ‘Sir, is it like running the cross country and when you’re in the lead half way through you think you should be given the gold medal?’.
This Week in Pre-Prep...
by Claire Luckhurst
I do hope you all enjoyed a relaxing half term break with your families and managed to squeeze in enough adventures to compensate for life locking down again over the next few weeks. The children have all returned full of fun, energy and enthusiasm; indeed, the blustery weather conditions literally blew them back into school on Monday and provided the crackle and fizz to complement our assembly all about Fireworks! We were also fizzing with excitement at the wonderful news that Miss Knight gave birth to the very gorgeous Theodore Christopher Alexander Pryke on Saturday 17 October. I am delighted to report that mummy, daddy and baby are all doing well and enjoying all the precious moments becoming a new family brings.
A Few Words from...Wilf Gostling
This term's Deputy Head Boy
I hope everyone had a great half term. I had a quiet couple of weeks, mainly at home with my family but I also met up with a few friends which was really fun.
My Grandparents also moved from Cornwall to Stogumber. My Grandad has lived in St Ives his whole life (I won’t mention how many years!), so it is a big change for him. I am really looking forward to them being closer.
This week has been a very interesting one, we are all facing a national four week lockdown to try and reduce the spread of Covid-19 and also maybe at the time you are reading this, we may know who is the new president of the United States! I think the presidential election will be very close.
It is a shame we are still unable to have our normal sports fixtures during lockdown but at least we are still able to come to school to learn and also be with our friends. We just need to make sure we are all careful about washing our hands, wearing our masks and keeping our distance. Good luck to everyone with their exams this term too!
An exciting thing that happened to me in half term, I got a new horse, meet Joey!
A View from the Rose Garden - 3HB
It has been a busy week at school for us all in Year 3 after a couple of super weeks of holiday. The children have slotted back into the routines and are working hard mastering number lines in maths, writing firework poems in English and trying to keep up with the singing on Horrible Histories Kings and Queens song!
When asked what they thought we should put in the newsletter this week Year 3 felt that it would be useful to highlight some guidelines for using the Adventure Playground, so we could all stay safe.
- Make sure you do not go under the net
- Make sure you wear shoes when you are on the net
- Be careful when you are on the net, no somersaults or back flips, because it is quite wobbly and you can bang heads
- Do not jump off the net onto the ground
- Be considerate of others when you are playing, taking turns and looking after everyone
- Do not play rough games as people can get hurt
- Be careful on the platforms; take turns to get on and off and give each other some space
Well done Year 3s, it is good to see you taking some much care of yourselves and each other!
We hope you enjoy seeing some of our pictures from our fantastic trip to New Barn just before half term.
by Snoops the Dog
As you can see from my photo, I enjoyed the fireworks as much as the children. You might not believe this claim, coming from a gentle fluffy hound like myself, but it’s absolutely true.
I stood with great anticipation with my friends on the edge of the field waiting for the spectacle to commence. At this point I must make a quick apology to the boarding staff for pulling so hard on my lead. Those rockets would have been even more exciting to chase than squirrels and seagulls.
Unable to contain my excitement I leapt and twirled and wagged my tail so hard that it aches this morning.
Anyway, all that’s left to say is:
“Thank you Mr Chippendale, thank you Mrs Masters and thank you the skilful pyrotechnics that were Mr Masters and Mr Eyers. I had the best evening”.
Here’s wishing all you friends a beautiful autumnal weekend.
Boarding Blog - by Mrs Clare Masters, Houseparent
On Thursday us boarders had a very special surprise! We had an early supper, and everyone was very curious why. After a delicious Thai yellow pork curry, Mrs. Masters announced that we would be watching fireworks on the front field! We all rushed to get our coats, and sprinted to the Pemberton room, where we were gifted with lots of glow-sticks! After that we all rushed out to watch the firework show. We all were standing on the front field huddled in our coats and with glow-sticks in hand, heavily anticipating the show, and suddenly we heard a BANG! There was suddenly an array of colours and lights dancing across the sky, and soon enough, the show was over. Then we all herded back into school, and sat in the dining room, where we warmed up with hot chocolate and marshmallows. It was a very enjoyable evening, and was a very successful surprise!
Also just to wish a very warm welcome to Mr Eyers who has joined us and is providing GAP support to boarding.
His first duty was to participate in a nerf war in the boys' corridors – definitely a winner with the boys!
Mrs Gompels' Year 6 Tutor Group - 6K
6K are very pleased to be back at school after lovely half terms. Congratulations to Lizzy for passing her D+ equestrian test and to Dalbi and James for being selected for Somerset Pathway cricket. Definitely good examples of using their spare time wisely. We also throughly enjoyed our treat of ice creams at the end of half term.
This week sees our library once again ‘complete’ with a super duper new librarian and so as a small welcome to Mrs Lowery, 6K have decided to reveal the books they would one day like to write.
Can you guess which title belongs to which child?
“The Science behind Video Games (warning very nerdy calculations within!)”
- Book title 1
“The Circus Catastrophe”
- Book title 2
“The Epic Misfortunate Super Story of Tom Peterson”
- Book title 3
“How to win Battlefront Multiplayer with Assault Best Tips”
- Book title 4
“The Zoo Escape”
- Book title 5
“Survival in the Jungle ”
- Book title 6
- Book title 7
“Journey to the Jungle”
- Book title 8
“A Dog’s Life”
- Book title 9
“The Mysterious Forest”
- Book title 10
“How to Play Perfect Cricket Shots”
- Book title 11
“Machines and their Functions”
- Book title 12
“The Mysterious Librarian”
- Book title 13
“How to win a Fortnite Match”
- Book title 14
“How to be Epic at Hockey”
- Book title 15
“The Ghost Pony”
- Book title 16
- Book title 17
Banana Dog – Natasha
The Ghost Pony – Lizzy
How to be Epic at Hockey – Anna
How to win a Fortnite Match – Zhiesy
The Mysterious Librarian – Reggie
Machines and their Functions – Rex
How to Play Perfect Cricket Shots – Tom H
The Mysterious Forest – Grace
A Dog’s Life – Tilly
Journey to the Jungle – Camille
Danny Plotter – Tom A
Survival in the Jungle – Dalbi
The Zoo Escape – Sienna
How to win Battlefront Multiplayer with Assault Best Tips – James
The Epic Misfortunate Super Story of Tom Peterson – Paul
The Circus Catastrophe – Dascha
The Science behind Video Games (warning very nerdy calculations within!) – Isaac
Please note that all the children's login details for Office 365 can be found in the front of their prep diaries. This also gives them access to teams which some staff in the higher year groups are using as a platform for their teaching.
All of Year 3 have now successfully achieved their mission of logging into the computer and into teams. We have also covered some basic elements of word processing using word. This half term we are going to make an e-book based on their Humanities work on the British Isles. We have also explored elements of scratch, a coding programme. Some of the children have already designed their own code. It is worth a look at, follow the link below, warning though this can be a little addictive!
So far this term Year 4 have also completed their mission of logging into teams and accessed the work set. We have been exploring the internet and how it is connected. We have also looked at the World wide web and how the information gets to us. This half of term we will be looking at who owns the web and then moving onto some coding using logo. The children will be problem solving and debugging their codes.
Year 5 and 6
We have been looking at how information is transferred over the internet and how computers can be connected together to form systems. This half of term we will be using crumbles (not the one we eat!) A crumble in computing terms is an easy to use programmable controller. Using crumble software we will be using code to programme the controller to perform many different functions. This will involve problem solving and de bugging (we cannot always be right first time when coding)
Year 7 have been doing some calculations using spreadsheets. We have applied basic formulae to calculate recipes and planned a party! Many of the children have recognised that their parents use this in everyday tasks at work and home. In the second half of term we will be extending scratch and looking at the essentials of programming, sequencing and variables.
Year 8 have been getting to grips with online word and power point. We have noted its limitations though! We have also looked at saving to One drive, organising folders and uploading work to teams. I have been impressed with their Geography field trip work which is mainly being done on the computer. I am hoping the children experiment and extend the work on crumbles and we may even have a complete crumble robotic vehicle by the end of term which uses scratch inspired programming and line sensor technology.Scratch
History - Year 6K
In their history lesson 6K were tasked with creating a medieval life board game which included all the ups and downs of the life of a peasant. The board games were excellent – well thought through with some very creative elements of medieval life.
Some examples of the squares you could land on were:
You save up to buy a pig - move forward 3 spaces
Your pig is stolen - move back 5 spaces
You have burnt the Lord’s bread - move back two spaces
You break your leg during the harvest - go back to the start
6K’s board games showed just how hard life would have been in medieval England and importantly, they had good fun playing them!
Year 7 have been studying the topic of ‘Earthquakes and Volcanoes’ and over half term Will Geddes built his very own version of Mount St Helens, complete with side vent! It was not a typical eruption and erupted out of the side, Will’s model is extremely realistic and in our lesson this week we attempted to recreate the eruption! Well done, Will! There is a little video clip of the volcano in action below.
And Year 6 spent a magnificent afternoon on the Quantock Hills, navigating their way along rivers, down valleys and up the hills Wednesday afternoon in the glorious sunshine using our geography skills to help us along the way.Will's volcano
By Natalie Kemmish, School Secretary/Receptionist
“When life gets you down, you know what you gotta do?”
“I don’t want to know what you gotta do?”
“Just keep swimming. Just keep swimming. Just keep swimming, swimming, swimming. What do we do? We swim, swim.”
“Dory, no singing.”
I have chosen this quote as not only is it in one of the films my little boy went through a stage of watching on repeat (secretly glad as I love it) it is also full of fantastic life lessons and advice.
We all at some point face difficult situations in life and feel overwhelmed but then our loved ones and friends remind us to keep going and not give up. Now more than ever in these trying and uncertain times it is important to remind ourselves to keep our heads above water and keep on swimming and do what we can to stay positive.
Every time Marlin feels like giving up Dory says to him, “Just keep swimming. Just keep swimming.”
Whenever I sing this to myself it makes me smile and we could all do with more of that, right? Also, it’s my birthday today so another reason to smile.
Stay safe and keep on swimming everyone!
Games and Hobbies
It has been great to be running around again during PE lessons this week following the half term break.
The changeable weather certainly made for a great photo at Rugby Ready hobby on Tuesday.
Our boarders also enjoyed their last waterpolo session of 2020 – the many benefits of having a heated outdoor pool!
During the break ND Hockey had use of the facilities at King's Hall for two days with a some of our students putting their Hockey skills to the test.
See below for a slideshow of some of the highlights of these sessions.ND Hockey
“Sensational couple days this week with a brilliant bunch of kids. Looking forward to the time when we can do it all over again! Thanks @KCTSport @kingshallsport for use of facilities for the two days”
- ND Hockey
A beautiful setting for swim-fit with the Year 8 pupils on Wednesday! Red sky at night, PE teachers' delight
Turning a Negative into a Positive
Our sports department are creating ways to keep our pupils fit and active now that sports fixtures have been cancelled. On Wednesday Mr Halls and Y6 went cross curricular and incorporated sport into the visit to the Quantocks to focus on teamwork, fitness and geography skills!
Golf and Cricket
Congratulations to a number of our pupils, all of whom have enjoyed sporting success over the half term holiday.
Brothers, Noah and Theo Jones had a productive time: Year 7 pupil Noah and his fellow team mates won the Somerset Junior Golf Matchplay Knockout Cup for Oake Manor vs Taunton & Pickeridge, while Year 5 Theo, was offered a place on the U11 Somerset cricket pathway at the recent county trials.
Theo joins a number of other young cricketers from King's Hall School who also gained places onto various age category player pathways. Congratulations to all...more to follow on this story next week!
On the golfing front, we'd also like to say well done to fellow pupil Theo Lamey, who was a member of the Taunton & Pickeridge team. The final match between him and Noah was incredibly close, both playing some exceptional golf! And for Year 8 pupil Thomas Rew, he was selected to represent Somerset in U14 golf for the 2020/2021 season. Playing off an impressive handicap of 11, Thomas also plays golf at Taunton & Pickeridge.
A great number of our pupils play sport in and out of school, and the provision and breadth of sport we offer, enables them to develop a range of skills throughout the year. We're always delighted to see them doing so well, as demonstrated by the many pupils who have clearly been working hard in their training over the holidays.Oake Manor Junior League
Football and Tennis
In football, Charlie Sidhu, having recently attended two trials for the schools' district football team, was successful in gaining selection to play for the Taunton District FA team. During half term they enjoyed their first training match against Exeter City Academy.
Zane Assal in Year 7, also took trials for his tennis and was successful in gaining a place at Blackbrook.
Well done to Tabitha Thompson, competing for King’s Schools in the NSEA Eventers Challenge at Pontispool on 1st November. Her team, including two former King’s Hall pupils, Tilly Fuller and Harriet Wrelton, have qualified for the Eventers Challenge final at Hickstead in 2021.
There were 50 competitors in the 80-85cm class, Tabitha and Mack won first individual and in Class 3 the Kings Team were first schools team
Tabitha and Mack had a lot of fun riding over the show jumps, cross country fences, through a water splash, down a bank with Tabitha smiling and laughing and Mack had his ears pricked throughout the round.
King's Hall Book Fair - Thursday 12th November
Just a reminder that next week we are holding a book fair at King's Hall. Unfortunately, Covid protocols mean that parents cannot attend
For pupils in years 3-8, if you would like to give permission for your child’s chosen book or books to be added to your school bill and have not already done so please CLICK HERE to contact Rachael Lowery.
Pre-prep pupils are unable to attend in person due to Covid guidelines, however parents may order on their behalf using the details provided in the email received on Wednesday.
Stock up for Christmas or buy as gifts, commission from all purchases will be used to enhance the library collection.
Welcome Mrs Lowery, our new school librarian – we're delighted you've joined us! Thank you to Mrs Stuckes and her band of helpers for taking care of these duties.
“READING should not be presented to children as a chore, a duty. It should be offered as a gift”
- Kate Dicamillo
These times are difficult for all, but especially so for our elderly relatives and neighbours who will not be allowed out or to have visitors.
Pupils recognise that reaching out to our local community during lockdown is very important and that we can make a difference with something simple like writing a letter.
Our local nursing homes have so many elderly residents who would love to receive letters and colourful pictures.
The pupils have been asked to:
- Only use their first name.
- Not to give any personal information, such as their last name or age.
- Keep it simple!
- Write about hobbies and activities they enjoy, favourite lessons, things they like to do outside school.
- Draw pictures or create a colourful design.
Paper will be provided. and when finished, they have been asked to please hand the letter to their tutor.
Each tutor group will have an envelope and Pupil Council reps will collect their tutor group envelope and bring to the front office for posting.
BBC Children in Need - Friday 13th November
NON UNIFORM DAY
In support of Children in Need, on Friday 13th November the King’s Hall School Pupil Council invite pupils to wear casual clothes for a special non-uniform day are asked to please bring in a suggested donation of at least £2 to support children in the UK.
Uniform - Order your Winter Woolies
We have had a number of queries regarding uniform coming into colder weather, so just to confirm:
On days when pupils have games sessions they are welcome to wear the KHS sports hoodie on top of their sports kit.
On days when they are in school uniform they can wear the zip up KHS fleece. Many pupils this week have been wearing it over their jersey.
Of course, children are also welcome to wear a thermal t-shirt / baselayer under their school shirt.
Also just a reminder now the colder weather is upon us, to please contact the school shop to order your winter essentials as soon as possible.
The school shop is open Mondays and Wednesdays from 2:30pm to 5:00pm during term-time, until the 9th December 2020, so don't delay, order today! Snoops is all set in his winter gear!
Please can we ask that all visitors to the shop wear face masks, and to sign in using the NHS track and trace QR code system.
CONTACT SCHOOL SHOP
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