Headmaster’s Last Word – Week ending 14.06.19
MR TAYLOR’S LAST WORD
I often consider myself to be in a fortunate position at Glebe as I can have a foot in two camps. Not only am I Headmaster, but also I have my two children as pupils here.
Now, this can have its downsides of course. Having to politely tell one of my children that ‘Daddy can’t watch you do rolly polys on my sofa right at this minute because he has an important meeting’ is always fun. Being called ‘Sir Daddy’ at home by mistake was, however, one of the highlights!
My experiences and those of Naomi as new parents here can often be very important in forming my opinion of the ethos the school has and the direction in which it is moving.
Let’s take the swimming gala today, for example, and swimming as a whole. When I saw the distance that the children had to race, I jokingly asked a colleague what our ‘anti drowning policy was’ as I had never seen my son swim that far. Of course, I was very proud of him when he managed that distance with no problem. I was just as proud to see all of the children having a chance to participate, at their level, with such enthusiasm and support from their friends and family.
Another example is with my daughter, who came up in assembly on Monday. The shy and timid young lady that she was at the start of the year in a similar situation was now gone, replaced by someone with confidence and ease. Again, I am as proud of the other children who I have seen come on a similar journey this term.
Of course, our academic profile is second to none. We have children every year getting prestigious scholarships to independent schools, wining national competitions and our tracking system ensures that each individual child reaches their potential.
In addition to that though, are those intangible things that I get to see first hand as a parent. Not just swimming, not just confidence in a once shy child, but that Glebe effect. It is all around us to see and it is something that whatever changes are made to improve the school, must be at the heart of what we do.
I can’t wait to show the school off again at tomorrow’s Open Day and I hope to see many of you there to meet our new uniform supplier.
Have a great weekend,
Last word – Week ending 15.03.19
A famous quote from the Ancient Greek philosopher Plato states: Music is a moral law. It gives soul to the universe, wings to the mind, flight to the imagination, and charm and gaiety to life and to everything.
We have enjoyed quite a musical week here at Glebe. Of course, we have had the usual music lessons, Hartbeeps and sound exploration that make up part of our Nursery and School curriculum. Pupils have been enjoying their individual music lessons too, with piano, clarinet, drums and singing to name but a few.
On Wednesday, the Prep School enjoyed a hymn practice, with two very different songs as a focus. Firstly, we looked at a song called ‘Wake Up’ where the children were encouraged to dance, shake their bodies and give a friend a thumbs up. I think I even caught one or two of the Div VIIIs joining in! We also spent some time working on the school song, On Eagles’ Wings. We have so many new pupils with us that it is important that they all have a chance to hear and learn our wonderful, defining hymn.
Finally, today was the chance for us to hear many outstanding performances at our informal concert. From the children that have only had one or two lessons, to the more experienced and able performers, it was as usual a fantastic way to end the week – with the imagination, charm and gaiety of which Plato spoke clear for everyone to enjoy.
I hope that this weekend you have a chance to listen to some music that you like. It may be Beethoven, Girls Aloud or Baby Shark – whatever your music of choice, there is nothing better than having a dance, singing a song with your family and giving wings to your mind. Actually – I’m not too sure about Baby Shark but you get the picture!
Have a great weekend,
Mr Taylor’s Last Word – Week ending 1st February
MR TAYLOR’S LAST WORD
Well, doesn’t half term seem so long ago? We arrived back for the second half of spring term but it felt more like summer with beautiful sunny skies and unseasonably warm weather.
Thank you to all of those parents who attended the e-safety chat on Thursday morning, and I hope everyone received the link to some useful websites that was sent over Parentmail. The key message from the talk was that as parents, we need to ensure that communication is open with our children, so that whatever they face either online or offline, they feel that they can tell us. On top of that, we should monitor what is going on in our children’s lives, again both online and offline – there was a link to some apps that can help us do the online part on the parentmail.
The school has been buzzing and busy this week, with our new pupils starting, different topics in lessons and of course with the children enjoying time outside in the sunshine. We had an assembly on Wednesday all about resilience. If your child is in the Prep school, ask them what a ‘squiggle’ is!
Earlier in the week, we appointed our brand new Catering Manager, Maria Piccioni. Maria has many years of experience working in schools and improving their food offering, providing healthy, fresh and nutritious food for children of all ages – moving away from processed products. We are excited to have her on board. Once she’s settled in, watch this space for a parent and child taster day, to give the opportunity to try out some new dishes and some improved old favourites.
I was delighted to share two things on our social media this week, with Philippa raising money for charity of her own volition and Kitty and Alice with their respective scholarship awards. Don’t forget to follow us on Facebook to keep up to date with what is going on at Glebe – the link is at the bottom of this newsletter.
I hope that you all have a wonderful weekend
Issue 15 – Diversity is key
Firstly, I’d like to thank all of those parents who over the past two weeks have given me feedback on the sports and food at Glebe. We always looking at building on what we do well here, as well as improving what we can, so watch this space for more news on these areas soon.
We have been so lucky to welcome our Chinese visitors this week. I have been very proud of how kind and considerate our children have been towards our guests, in addition to being impressed with how well our visitors have settled into Glebe life.
Understanding different cultures and displaying tolerance for those different from us is something that I believe every child should be brought up to do. Racism, xenophobia and other forms of discrimination are all too prevalent, in my opinion, filtering back into our society. You don’t have to look at social media for too long before you see foul and abusive comments made towards someone because of their race, religion or sexuality.
Of course, no child is born racist. Behaviours such as racism and hatred towards people are learned by children, through the fear and ignorance of those around them. It is our job as educators, as parents, as carers, to guide our children to an understanding of what is right, how we should act to one another and how finding common ground is a much better way than finding differences.
For this reason, at Glebe we will always welcome pupils, parents, visitors and guests from all walks of life, all ethnicities, all faiths and none. I strongly believe, that if our next generation is going to improve the world in which we live, that they will do it with, not against, each other. That is the message that we will always work hard to share with our pupils.
Have a good weekend,
Issue 14 – Week ending 18.01.2019
It’s been another busy week at Glebe – I know I always say that – but it is always so great to see so many different activities, lessons and experiences going on for our Nursery, Pre-Prep and Prep students.
One of the strengths of our school has always been the amount of time we set aside for exercise and physical education. In Nursery, the children are very often to be found running (or crawling) around outside and going for walks around the grounds. In Pre-Prep and then more so in Prep, the sounds of children running around and having fun, whilst improving technique and skill is never far away.
Over the years I have taught in different types of schools with different approaches to the competitive side of sport. The first school I worked in was a state school where we would play football, netball, ‘kwik’ cricket and the occasional tag rugby fixture – but the onus was very much on lessons rather than fixtures and teaching the composite skills of most sports such as agility, flexibility and just generally ensuring that the children took enough exercise.
More recently, the school I last worked in before Glebe was more focused on competitive games, with A, B and C teams – with the A team playing more fixtures than the others. Those that weren’t selected to play in fixtures were instead in Games lessons learning the skills they need to improve their game.
At Glebe, I have enjoyed watching fixtures and I can sense the enjoyment, comradery and lessons that each child gains from taking part. In Games lessons where fixtures do not take place, pupils of all abilities gain valuable practice time and experience with our dedicated and talented Games and PE staff.
Once again, I would really welcome your opinions on how we approach competitive fixtures at Glebe now and how we might change it in the future, if we need to at all. I’m interested on your thoughts on how matches are approached – do we have too many, or not enough? Should matches be the best players regardless of age group, or all of the available players in each year group? I will start this process by asking this week in the newsletter – to be followed up by a questionnaire on this and the food provision in the coming weeks. You can email me here with your thoughts – whatever age group your child is – Nursery, Pre-Prep or Prep.
I know that many of your children will be taking part in sporting events this weekend – good luck to them – and good luck to you, standing on the sidelines trying not to freeze!
Have a great weekend