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Weekly News #29

Message from the Headmistress

Dear Parents,

Congratulations to our Junior Choir who came third place at the Derby Arts Festival last Friday and to our Year 11 Art students, Becky and Rosie, who showcased their portfolio of GCSE Art work last Friday evening. What fantastically creative work! I have my eye on a couple of pieces that would look fabulous framed in my office…

Last Saturday afternoon, we had a lovely activity session in our Junior School for prospective and future parents and their children. Thank you to all the staff who gave their time to this very successful event.

On Wednesday afternoon this week, pupils from Years 5 to 10 had the delight of seeing a play in Spanish which was entertaining as well as educational. Thank you to the Friends of Hollygirt for funding this unique opportunity.

Also on Wednesday, in the evening, was the GCSE Drama performance of a modernised and edited version of The Canterbury Tales. The promenade style piece encouraged the audience to follow the journey of the pilgrims quite literally as we were entertained to a feast of mime, action and much hilarity as the tales unfolded. Well done to the entire group. Drama is an additional GCSE for the group and all the work has been completed out of school hours, adding to their already substantial curricular load.

On Thursday, I said goodbye to the Year 11 pupils as they embark on their study leave. They will be back next week as the written papers begin and I wish them the best of luck. It is a time for much sadness for many. I note that one of the girls joined the school in 2004! That equates to over 82% of her life. Others joined just last year. Their leavers video entertained the whole Senior School as they showed the story of their journey.

Have a lovely weekend – apparently, there is a heat wave coming!

Mrs Hutley

Message from the Acting Head of Juniors

Click here to see this week’s Stars of the Week

Dear Parents,

It is a rather grey, drizzly day today, after what has been an otherwise sunny and bright week. The children have had lots of time to enjoy the new playground equipment chosen by the School Council, and I was struck by how attractive the fully revamped garden is now looking. It has a certain “In The Night Garden”/”Teletubbies” (I am a veteran of both of these programmes) look to it with the bright colours and all the fun activities, and it has been great to see the children having so much fun. I am always impressed about how well the different age groups get on with each other – they do themselves and the school proud.

On the subject of which, I look forward to handing out certificates later today to Year 1 and 2 pupils for their improvements in swimming. Well done to all for their hard work and determination.

The older Juniors joined with some of the Seniors this week to watch a performance of “¿Cuantos Me Gusta Tienes?” (“How Many ‘Likes’ Do You Have?”) which they thoroughly enjoyed and gave rave reviews. The play, performed entirely in Spanish, was funny but also addressed some serious points about social media.

Yesterday, I took Year 5 to Nottingham Girls’ High School for a Maths Challenge Day. The focus was on fun, maths-based activities, such as solving a logic puzzle to see where everyone should sit at the Mad Hatter’s Tea Party to keep everyone happy (Year 5 pupils are now available for hire for weddings and other family functions…). Well done to all, and, again, I know that they found it thoroughly engaging. My thanks to Mrs Walker and Miss Lau for their help, also.

Earlier this week, Hollygirt hosted a Mental Health First Aid training course, and I joined candidates from all over the Midlands in what was an engaging, interesting and very relevant day. You will no doubt be aware that mental wellbeing is highly topical at the moment. I am planning on trialling a weekly session during a playtime for the children where they are welcome just to come and chat if they so wish, or let me know about any concerns or anxieties they may have. It may well be that they all wish to be out enjoying the fabulous playground – alluded to earlier – but I shall see how it goes.

The exams will be starting in a week or so for Years 3 and up. Hopefully, the children have started a revision routine by now, but it is important to keep these exams in perspective: all we ask is that the children try their best and assume good study habits, as these will serve them well in future years. Oxbridge places are not up for grabs at this age, so they should not feel overly stressed or anxious. If children come out of an exam and have done their best, there is no more that we can ask from them.

Finally this week, just another reminder that Sports Day will be on the afternoon of Thursday 25th May at Highfields. Hopefully, it will a little less grey and drizzly than the view from my window at present, but, whatever the weather, I look forward to the children trying their hardest and having fun.

Mr Goodhead
Acting Head of Juniors

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"Pupils are self-confident, self-aware and have a good sense of who they are."

ISI Inspection February 2013