14th February 2020
by Justin Chippendale
Another weekend, another storm looms! Dennis (the menace) will give us all another blast to kick start the half term break and I hope it doesn’t upset too many plans along the way.
Earlier today the whole Prep school celebrated the wonderful involvement, enjoyment and rewarding experiences many children have had through music these last two weeks. There will be plenty of detail in the Newsletter but I have to say we have all been so taken by the talent and musicality we have been lucky enough to see and hear through assembly performances, the Lent Concert and, of course, the Taunton Festival of the Arts music fortnight. Many congratulations to those who have worked hard to be ready to head out and perform in various classes.
Working backwards, we saw other talents on display last night at the Friends of King’s Hall quiz. Over 100 quizzers stirred the grey matter in response to the Chief Pelican’s interrogations including a question about how many steps there are up from the drive into the Pemberton Room at the front of school. I’m sorry to say that the Headmaster got that one wrong! Thank you to Donald Rice and his team, ably supported by the tireless Brenda Worth underpinning the admin to make it all work.
Donald mentioned some FoKHS events for next term such as the Parent and Child tennis tournament, the Dog Show and we will also be holding an event for the whole school community on the afternoon of Thursday 7 May before the Long Weekend pickup: more details to follow when appropriate.
That all lies ahead. For now, happy Valentine’s today and we now look forward to weeks of activity following in the second half of term once we have taken time to draw breath and re-boot over the next nine days.
This Week in Pre-Prep ...
by Claire Luckhurst
Nursery completed our series of year group assemblies at the start of the week when they delighted us all with some super singing and dancing based on their learning about ‘Jack and the Beanstalk’. My face still aches from how much I smiled from start to finish! The most wonderful part was seeing just how much the children enjoyed being in front of an audience; their smiles and laughter even chased away the rain momentarily!
It has definitely been a very busy first half of term in Pre-Prep and the children seem ready for a pit-stop before diving back into their learning adventures after the half-term break. Hopefully, we will begin to see the return of lighter mornings and evenings on the other side of the break too!
Reminders for after half-term
Monday 24th February
KCT 13+ Academic Scholarships
8CE (K/H) Parent-Teacher-Pupil meetings
Tuesday 25th February
KCT 13+ Academic Scholarships
Wednesday 26th February
KCT 13+ Academic Scholarships
Thursday 27th February
KCT 13+ Music, Art, DT, Drama & Sport Scholarships
Friday 27th February
KCT 13+ Sport Scholarships
With a dedicated team of 21 instrumentalists, a further seven vocalists, the Brass Group and the King’s Strings quintet ...
... the Music rounds of this year’s Taunton Festival of the Arts have been hugely successful and the feedback received, and experience gained, from the two weeks have been tremendous.
King’s Hall children gained seventeen first places and three second places as well as receiving uniformly high marks, many of which were at Distinction level.
Before this year’s Festival had even come to an end, the Lent Concert arrived with hardly a moment’s respite.
Featuring almost 60 pupils, the event provided an opportunity for some performers to repeat their well-prepared Festival offerings and for others to give first airings of pieces.
The two-hour concert highlighted the very best of the Arts at King’s Hall and nearly 40 pieces in total were performed across the disciplines of Music, Drama and Dance.Full review coming soon...
Miss Perkins' tutor group
During our PSHE lessons we have been looking at the topic of study skills and learning about a range of ways to approach revision, the way brains function, things that can cause stress, ways to help combat such issues and the benefits of healthy eating and exercise in relation to all of this.
We discovered if we were predominantly a right or left sided brain thinker and then, depending on the outcome, looked at how we find it easier to revise or approach tasks. We also discussed ways to strengthen our less dominant brain hemispheres and found that focussing on breathing techniques and mindfulness were instant strategies to induce calm. Healthy food options help to slowly release energy throughout the day, supporting energy levels, concentration and reducing sugar crashes, lethargy and headaches. At the same time, taking regular breaks, doing something different or that we enjoy, all aid with supporting study and pre-exam revision.
Revision styles included mind-mapping (spider-diagrams/brain storms/bullet points), making lists, post-it notes, posters, revision cards, look-cover-write-check, testing each other; visualisation and association.
This has certainly helped us in preparation for our exams next term and we will certainly be putting several of these techniques into practice.
At the beginning of each term, each year group covers one aspect of internet safety.
In addition to this, each year we also celebrate Safer Internet Day which is a day to get everyone talking about how to help children be happy, healthy and creative in all that they do online.
This year’s theme is Free to Be, and we started the day with an assembly exploring online identity and how the internet shapes how the children think of themselves and others. There was also a bit of karaoke thrown in and I'll leave this to the children to explain further ...!!
A Few Words from ... Oscar Mack
This term's Head Boy
After a very busy five and a half weeks (only!) to settle back into school rhythm it is time for a well-earned break. After a dark winter it is finally getting light and in no time spring will be upon us, and with it more rain!
The first half of term has been full of exciting events, such as IAPS and various hockey, netball, football and even a few cross-country fixtures and some less exciting events like mock exams to balance it out. With the Year 6 play dawning and House Music just around the corner the second half of term looks to be just as exciting.
The half term holidays are a time to rest and relax for most but for my class it is a time of revision for the 13+ scholarships. Well done to those who took the 11+ scholarships you all did a great job and should be proud of yourselves.
There is also the wooden spoon challenge to occupy you over the break. It is where you are asked to design on a sheet of paper a book character around the template of a wooden spoon. Then over half term you build your ideas and make them a reality.
With spring nearing, the days getting longer and a great second half of term to look forward to I hope you all have a restful and enjoyable holiday.
A View from the Rose Garden
In Outdoor Learning Year 3 have been bird watching and can now identify many native British birds.
by Sasha Gompels, Year 3 teacher
We thought we would educate the rest of the Rose Garden in our Wednesday assembly and remind the children to feed those birds in the colder weather. Aesop’s fable about the crow and jug was brilliantly acted out by Florence and the proverb reminded us to use our brains and think up solutions to tricky problems!
‘Birds of a feather flock together’ and 3G are very much looking forward to ‘taking flight’ and enjoying their half term!
Mathematics news ...
by Mr Richard Morgan, Head of Maths
As half term approaches, the Year 8 pupils find themselves in two distinct groups, with the Common Entrance candidates reflecting on their performance in the recent mocks whilst the scholars are about to face their external examinations. The scholars have been preparing for the past year and a half by working on some very challenging content and using some highly developed reasoning and problem solving skills. However, the Maths department sees these exams as very much the culmination of a good number of years’ work with the foundations being set in the earlier years where the children are equipped with not only the knowledge and mathematical skills that will be built on at a higher level, but also, crucially, the self-confidence to ‘challenge’ themselves.
The Year 6 pupils are currently looking at 3 dimensional shapes and their properties, and this week have been excellent ‘independent learners’ whilst investigating the nets of cubes and also ‘practical mathematicians’ as they have made some solid shapes from nets they have designed themselves.
The Year 5 pupils have also been doing some practical work with volume and capacity, and Zhiesy was even the main character in the worksheet!
Shortly after half-term, the whole school will be involved in a Maths and Science co-curricular week which will give the pupils the opportunity to see how subjects they sometimes see as separate and different often overlap, intertwine and complement each other. There will be lots of activities that will involve teamwork, fun, problem solving and that word ‘challenge’ again.
The Great King's Hall Wooden Spoon Challenge
Emily Marcuccilli, Librarian
At King’s Hall we are passionate about reading. It goes without saying, therefore, that World Book Day, the worldwide annual celebration of stories, is always a major event here at school.
Reading for pleasure is fundamentally all about opening doors to our imagination and so we love to celebrate this by introducing a cross-curricular creative element to our festivities. In 2018 we transformed the humble spud into a spectacular array of book characters, while in 2019 we designed colourful mood boards to represent our favourite books. This year, the entire school, from Nursery to Year 8, will be creating book characters using wooden spoons!
Over the past couple of weeks, the children have been hard at work putting their designs together and giving careful thought to how they will represent their character in spoon form. Pupils have chosen a tremendously wide range of literary characters – from Mr Tumnus to Frankenstein, Pippi Longstocking to Hiccup the Viking, and Paddington Bear to Professor Dumbledore! The deadline for entries is 28th February and we can’t wait to see the completed spoons in all their glory, ready for World Book Day itself on Thursday 5 March.
Happy half term reading (and wooden spoon making!) to all!
by Snoops the Dog
Snoops Dreams of the Slopes...
Well, my dear friends, where did that half term go?
I can’t believe that it is only 6 weeks since I was counting down the days until the return of my King’s Hall friends...
I always look forward to longer walks in the holidays but I think we’ll have to wait for the departure of Storm Dennis. I was rather hoping that the mud situation would have improved by now, but it looks as though my blonde, furry locks will have to suffer for a little while longer!
I would like to wish you all a restful break, and for those of you going skiing/snowboarding, I’d just like to mention that I would very much like to join you at some point in the future. I’ve been practicing my snowboarding skills on the ironing board in the sewing room and I’m almost ready to try the real thing! I keep hinting to Mrs Masters that I need a doggy passport! I’m a very good traveller and no longer need to sit in my crate in the back of the car. Just keep me in mind for future bookings (especially as I’m a top-notch babysitter too!).
I’m already counting down the days until your return. Wishing you all a wonderful week!
Lots of love
Mrs Clare Masters, Houseparent
On Friday we welcomed over 60 boarders for yet another movie night. This time round we watched the 2019 version of The Lion King - it was a hit with everyone (although I expect there were a few tired pupils).
The wind picked up overnight on Saturday, rattling a few windows and even a few large branches. Sunday morning, though, was a little more relaxing with a chess tournament taking place - serious stuff and very competitive, and what was even better was the hush that descended when the games begun. However, by Sunday afternoon the hush was overcome by all the boarders taking part in a Nerf Gun war. A company came from Wiltshire, dodging trees and gale force winds, and set up a war zone in the Sports Hall, and well... you can imagine the fun that was had!
This weekend is half term and we spare a thought for our international boarders who are unable to return home due to the current circumstances. I am sure that their host families will look after them well and give them a fun packed and enjoyable week. See you all soon!
Good luck to our U11A girls who are taking part in an IAPS National Netball Finals competition today at Framlingham College Prep School, near Ipswich.
STOP-PRESS: A very well done to the girls who, we have just heard, made it through to the final of the tournament and have ended up as Runners-Up! As well as the brilliant netball achievement, we hear they have had a great overnight adventure.Fixtures and Reports Sports Twitter
King’s Community Swimming
This February half-term, King’s Community Swimming will be offering private and small group swimming lessons all abilities, both children and adults. Classes will be available every morning and 1-2-1 classes are a great way to focus on particular skills and accelerate learning. We can provide lessons for anyone who needs to learn strokes and technique and also provide coaching sessions for those swimmers who may wish to take their swim training to the next level. For more information, and to book your place, please email firstname.lastname@example.org
Residential Sports Camp (Easter 2020)
Sport is pivotal to the all-round development of pupils at King’s. It provides engagement, responsibility and enjoyment. We aim to actively enable young people to take on a variety of challenges, helping them to build confidence, take leadership and initiative, and work as part of a successful team.
This Easter, KCT are excited to host their first residential sports camp for children aged 8 – 13. The camp is designed to help players develop their skills and techniques in a broad range of sporting activities, while having fun and making new friends in a safe and supportive environment.
Over three days, children will gain access to a team of experienced coaches, as well as the chance to explore some of our wonderful facilities, including our state-of-the-art Sports Performance and Cricket Centre, netball and tennis dome, and sprawling sports pitches.
The package will also include two nights accommodation in one of our seven boarding houses, all meals and a schedule of evening activities (think quizzes, games and more!).
Open to players of all abilities, this camp is the perfect opportunity to experience the sporting and social elements of life at King’s College.
|When?||7 - 9 April 2020|
|For?||8-13 year olds|
Click here for more information and to register your interest
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