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Weekly News – Thursday 4th April

Message from the Headmistress

Dear Parents,

We have arrived at the end of a long and very busy term. Many of the children have been awarded certificates today, proof of the fabulous work, opportunities taken and achievements made.

I was delighted this week to judge at the final of the Year 7 and 8 Inter-House Spoken Cup. Pupils in Year 7 chose and presented a poem to read and pupils in Year 8 wrote and presented a monologue. I was most impressed by all those chosen for the final – they each did something special, I am saving Ffion’s winning poem for Prize Giving and well done to Lisa for her incredible Donald Trump satire. My end of term assembly, however, was stimulated by Abigail’s amazing monologue about procrastination (which as we all know is the thief of time…)

I have presented this assembly before in various guises, the message is always the same: EAT YOUR BIGGEST FROGS FIRST otherwise entitled ‘the sandwich box theory of time management’.

Here are its essential ingredients:

2 empty sandwich boxes – both exactly the same size
2 jugs each full of 500ml of water
2 very large stones – representing the fat frogs
A pile of smaller pebbles – representing the tadpoles
A cup of sparkly sand

To get the message – take a typical teenage day. Discuss as you pour all of the first jug of water into the box, that water represents time wasted on browsing the internet, YouTube, gaming, social media trawling, idling and doing nothing. And the box is full.

Take the second box and as you place in the two large stones, which seem to fill the box, explain these are the biggest jobs to be done (the fattest frogs on the list are the most important things). This could be writing an essay, researching a key subject, tidying your bedroom if it’s a heap and so on (adults substitute for all the things you have put on hold which by now have morphed into elephantine tasks). Then consider the tadpoles: sleeping, eating, taking refreshment breaks, doing some exercise, going outdoors, helpful chores, kindnesses, contact with relative, family time and generously add this myriad of smaller time taking things around the edges of the fat frogs.

Next sprinkle on a generous portion of free time where choice is yours to relax and enjoy – meeting friends, watching Netflix, reading a book. And then, yes, there is still space (time) left pour on as much water as seeps around the edges of blobbing aimlessly. Magic.

Hey presto – All can have a full sandwich box- a fulfilled life. All it takes is a little personal organisation and eating the biggest frogs first.

This assembly was pitched at our Year 11 pupils who are on their last few weeks of revision before their Summer GCSE examinations. Sadly there were only a handful of them present. We need to insist that school time is valuable and our terms offer generous holidays so pupils should, unless express permission for non-attendance has been granted, be in school each day of term. We award 100% attendance certificates now to praise those who make the full term. Everyone should get one of these if parents are getting 100% value for money! Please do not allow pupils to give you excuses about ‘it’s only an assembly and tidying up’. It wasn’t. There were curriculum lessons this morning. And the assembly is an important part of our school year celebrations and has points of learning too. Attendance is not a choice. It’s an expectation.

I thank all the pupils for making me proud today, for the medal winners and the participators, for the hard workers and those who strive to be the best version of themselves they can be. I wish you all a wonderful break.

Term begins again on Wednesday 24th April.


Mrs Hutley


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ISI Inspection February 2013