28th February 2018

Despite the snow, school will be open today 

CHS News – 9 February 2018

 

As we head off on the half term break, we would like to round up what has been a very productive first half to the Spring Term.   The 11+ entrance exams began the year with a bang and since then the school has been full of hard work and focused children.

 

Poetry Week 

 

The glorious rhythms of poetry have been ringing through the building as our pupils have been preparing diligently for the recent Poetry Competition.  The buzz of creative writing and literary appreciation throughout the school has been a delight to behold.  Our budding poets in Junior One completed their Super Hero projects with some acrostic poetry about their own superhero and Form One skied, surfed and sailed their Magic Boxes over the Pacific Ocean, to the Sahara Desert and beyond.  Form Two’s cross-curricular poems described their islands and all pupils challenged themselves to remember and deliver their lines with panache.  Our senior classes selected poetry by a range of famous poets including Alan Albright, Rudyard Kipling, Elizabeth Frye and Spike Milligan.  We could have awarded commendations to every pupil as all poems were performed eloquently, with character and clear diction.  Our guest adjudicator Mr Dick Jaine, Director of Education at Kensington Park School, and formerly High Master of St Paul’s Boys’ Senior School, had to make some difficult decisions.  However, in keeping with the CHS ethos, every child was applauded and pupils were recognised for effort and improvement as well as for their performance on the day.

 

Safer Internet Day

 

The whole school marked Safer Internet Day with a range of activities that reinforced online safety with some marvellous monsters designed, created and presented within the junior classes. The favourite monster from each class then received a prize; congratulations go to Orion, Yulia and Matteo for their fantastic junk model designs and to Amara for her creative Poster.  We look forward to displaying the children’s Safer Internet Posters on Open Day.

 

Sportspeople of the Term

 

Despite the cold weather, the children have continued to enjoy their sports lessons with Mr Taiwo, coming back rosy cheeked and full of beans from the park or Kensington Leisure Centre.  A special Well Done to Clay in Form One and Alexandra in Form Two who have been especially commended by Mr Taiwo as this term’s sportspeople of CHS!

 

Carol Concert Photographs

 

A selection of beautiful photographs from the carol concert are now available for you to purchase!  Kristof Szentgyorgyvary, our official CHS photographer, has uploaded these onto his website.

For security purposes, the password to unlock the pictures and purchasing information will be coming to you in a separate email. We respectfully ask you not to share these details with anyone outside of your immediate family or on social media but we know that you will enjoy these photos as much as we have!

 

Children’s Mental Health Week

 

We marked Children’s Mental Health Week with a special whole school assembly this morning, an addition to our weekly mindfulness assemblies. The children reflected upon the importance of positive thinking for mental health and each child received a little star upon which they wrote something which made them special and unique.  Next term, we plan to take our Senior Girls’ mindfulness practice to another level, meditating outside in the tranquil and picturesque Connaught Square Gardens.

 

Votes for women 100 years on

 

Representation of the People Act 1918.  Discussions took place throughout the school this week marking this important event and the roles played and sacrifices made by the suffragettes and suffragists in achieving this landmark ruling.

 

Afternoon Tea for Junior One and Form One   

 

Our final event of this bustling half term has been the Junior One and Form One afternoon tea at which Miss Hayward presented a short talk on ‘Reading aloud with your child’.  Thank you to all of those who attended and we hope you found it helpful.

 

Football

 

Mr Taiwo’s after school Friday Football Club will be returning to Hyde Park on 23 February (after the Poetry Recital).  It has been a joy for him to see how much all the children have developed in their footballing abilities and their love for the sport.  Please email games@connaughthouseschool.co.uk for full details and to confirm your place.

 

Dates for your Diary – full details to follow in due course

 

  • Poetry Recital at the Steiner Hall:  Friday, 23 February, 2.30pm.  Please can we remind you that this event is not suitable for younger siblings. Every pupil in the school will be performing in their class’ choral poem and those highly commended by Mr Jaine will be performing individually before this larger audience.

 

  • Parent Teacher Meetings: Tuesday, 27 February and Thursday, 1 March.

 

  • Open Day: Friday, 16 March, 8.30am until 11.00am.

 

Finally, we look forward to receiving the 11+ results for our senior girls and welcoming everybody back after a restful break on Monday, 19 February 2018.

 

The CHS Team

CHS News – January 2018

Happy New Year and welcome back!

 

We hope all our families have enjoyed the Festive season, frolicking in a small snow flurry and relishing in some family time.  As we know, the British weather is unpredictable and, should there be any more inclement weather on the horizon – necessitating a ‘snow day’  – we have prepared snow packs that will be emailed out.  Please note that information regarding school closure or reduced hours will be shared on the school website from 6.30am, under ‘news’.  Hopefully, this will not be necessary, as we are in central London.

 

UNIFORM

With the cold weather in mind, we would remind you that the children should be in school uniform at all times. There have been a number of non-school coats, hats and scarves appearing in our cloakroom. Whilst we appreciate that it is cold outside, we would be very grateful if you could dress your child in invisible layers that go underneath the school uniform, such as thermals, instead of replacing the CHS outerwear.

 

KEY DATES FOR YOUR SPRING TERM DIARY:

 

POETRY RECITAL – 23 FEBRUARY 2018

This will be taking place at the Steiner Hall, beginning at 2.30pm and lasting about one hour. Please note that this is not a suitable event for younger siblings who may find it difficult to remain silent during the recitals.

 

OPEN MORNING – 16 MARCH 2018

Open Morning will take place from 8.30am to 11.00am. We hope that many parents will join us for this wonderful opportunity to share achievements with their children.

 

CHESS

Chess has now been split into two mornings and will commence with our senior group this Friday, 5 January.

Monday: 8.45am – 9.15am JUNIORS

Friday:  8.30am – 9.00am SENIORS

Places are still available, if you would like your child to join.

 

FOOTBALL CLUB

After requests from most of his Friday after school football group, Mr Taiwo will be continuing his sessions from tomorrow, 5 January, in the dining room.  Until this activity moves outdoors again, parents should collect their children at 4.30pm.  Please note that these special arrangements have been made to facilitate these sessions during the winter months, we cannot accept younger, non-CHS siblings at this time.

 

WEDNESDAY CLUBS: 3.30 – 4.30pm

First club sessions begin next Wednesday, 10 January and the activities will include Coding and Equestrian Studies for the seniors, with Classic Comics and British Culture Clubs for the juniors.

 

HOMEWORK & DRAMA CLUBS

These clubs will begin next week.

 

INDIVIDUAL MUSIC LESSONS

These private lessons will commence from Monday, 8 January.

 

SCHOOL NEWS

We wish our pupils sitting exams this month the very best of luck and all the support and hard work that has been put in over the holidays is much appreciated.  We are confident that the children have been prepared and are ready for the challenges ahead.

 

Miss Forbes will be leading a Sun, Space & Art Workshop for Forms 3, 4, 5 & 6.  This project, led by Dr Helen Mason OBE, brings together scientists and visual artists to work in schools with teachers and children.

 

We are looking forward to welcoming the Enable Me charity towards the end of term as a whole school event.  Further information will be sent out closer to the date but in the meantime please visit http://enablemeproject.org.uk.

The CHS Team

CHS News – End of Autumn Term 2017

A final E:News to round up an excellent and productive Autumn Term.  The children and their teachers have certainly worked extremely hard to produce two wonderful events just one week apart – The Christmas Plays and the Carol Concert.

The Christmas Plays took place at the end of November in the beautifully refurbished Carisbrooke Hall and were, once again, a resounding success.  Our Junior Ones performed the Jolly Postman commendably posting their letters and celebrating Christmas cheer with a variety of characters from nursery fables.  Miss Hayward and Miss Broeders created a very humorous script with some wonderful dancing to support the Oscar worthy acting!  Form One took to the stage with clear diction, well learnt lines and Christmas spirit throughout their Gingerbread Man show.  Miss Pack, who unfortunately could not be there on the day, wrote excellent lines for each child that suited their characters perfectly.  Such fabulous costumes, supplied by parents, made all the difference.  As Form Two took to the stage there was a clear progression in the quantity of lines and speed of delivery from this older class.  Miss Rollins chose a play that the children obviously enjoyed performing.  For the first time, Forms Three, Four, Five and Six combined their talents and put on a marvellously funny and up-to-date adaptation of the Pied Piper, very cleverly written by Miss Burke and well supported by Miss Mayer, Mrs Walsh and Mr Westerman.  I think we all left the hall giggling to ourselves at the many jokes and one-liners that were included in the script!
On Thursday this week, our annual Carol Concert took place at St John’s Church with Dr Ashworth’s masterly ordered programme of song choices from around the world.  A new CHS music style was apparent and very well commended.  It was a real joy to see Form Two performing on the glockenspiels accompanying the senior orchestra’s rendition of Jingle Bells.  Miss Mclatchie’s violinists performed Away in a Manger admirably and a memorable Stille Nacht was sung by our senior choir.
Mrs Larke, as always, managed behind the scenes for both events ensuring smooth running and, together with Ms White’s programmes and administration, we were all kept informed so that the productions ran like clockwork.
Next week, in our final two days of the term, we have some fun events planned with our Christmas Party taking place on Monday, as well as our senior choir carol singing at the Victory Club, and a toy day on the last day of term when the children are invited to bring in a toy to share with their classmates.  Please note that the children should be collected before lunch on Tuesday – precise pick up times are on the CHS website.
Finally, we would like to wish all our families a very Happy Christmas break and we look forward to welcoming the children back for the Spring Term on 4 January 2018.
The CHS Team

CHS News – 24 November 2017

What a fun packed November we are having at Connaught House!  Our children have been incredibly busy in a whole range of activities.

You may have noticed our beautifully made poppy wreath on the front door, marking Armistice Day.  Forms Five and Six created this under the talented eye of Mrs Larke and the rest of the school also marked this significant event in various ways, from writing instructions on making a poppy, to a whole school PSHE assembly.

Junior One, Forms One and Two shared their love for dance and skilful moves with their parents earlier in the month. Miss Kate is a truly inspirational dance teacher, with her graceful demonstrations and choreography in both ballet and street dance.  Parents from our senior classes also joined us at Kensington Leisure centre today for Open Swim which will continue next Friday.  The adults were impressed with the children’s stamina and their ability to swim lengths in all four strokes.

Once again, we were able to book tickets for the Into Film Festival, the world’s largest free film and education event for young people. Forms Five and Six watched and then produced some work relating to an inspirational Ugandan movie, “The Queen Of Katwe”, a true tale of a young girl from a deprived background who becomes inspired by chess. Form Four were entertained by some animations of Roald Dahl’s Revolting Rhymes which linked closely to some of their work in English.

In recognition of National Anti-Bullying Week, the whole school reflected on Kindness and produced a heart-warming Kindness Tree which is displayed in the dining room.  Pupils from Junior One to Form Six reminded one another that there are many ways to show kindness, from giving a hug to sharing.  Also on display around the school are some lovely statuettes made by children from Form Three and upwards in Miss Forbes’ Tuesday afternoon art sessions

Thank you again to all of those parents who supported our Book Fair, hosted by Daunt Books.  CHS now has substantial credit with this independent bookseller and we are looking forward to investing in our library in the new year.

A special visitor made her first appearance in the building yesterday, to surprise her Daddy. Freya Westerman, who is now 8 weeks old, paid us a visit, delighting staff and some lucky seniors too.

Meanwhile, Ms Grunewald and Mrs Hampton have had a number of visits this month too, including seeing Eaton House Prep and the Halcyon Senior School. They look forward to tea with the Heads of Francis Holland, Regent’s Park, and Kensington Park Senior, a new coeducational school, in the coming weeks.

As we look towards a fast approaching Christmas, pupils have been rehearsing for both their plays and the carol concert.  Invitations to the concert will be sent out shortly and we would like to thank our parents for their support in sending in such beautiful and inventive costumes.

Have a wonderful weekend.

Best wishes.

The CHS Team

CHS News – 29 September 2017

A warm welcome to Baby Westerman who arrived safely at the weekend.  Mother, baby and father are all doing well and we look forward to seeing pictures of Mr Westerman’s daughter upon his return to school next week.

 

Congratulations to Junior One who, after a staggered start, have just completed their first full week of normal school.  They all enjoyed meeting Coco the guide dog with Hilary this week as part of Junior One’s Topic.

 

You will find important dates for your diary on October’s School Calendar.  Please also note coming up in November we have flu vaccinations on 8th (Junior 1 to Form 4) and individual and sibling photographs on 13th.

 

Wednesday, 4 October is National Walk to School Day and so we are encouraging any families that can to participate in this healthy event.

 

Uniform alert!

 

How lovely it is to see so many of the children in their new uniform and a wonderful smattering of our new summer dresses have been on display for the last few weeks.

 

However, now that we have come to the end of September, we would like to remind parents that as from the start of next week (2 October) all of our pupils should be in winter uniform.  Please refer to the uniform list.

 

As the weather becomes cooler, the children should start wearing their school duffel coats; we will keep their 3-in-1 waterproof coats in school for sporting activities and outings in all weathers.  We are in the process of adding an optional cagoule to the uniform list, which will be available soon, for children to wear over their blazers/duffel coats in wet weather if you prefer.  Warm fleece hats, scarves and gloves are available from our uniform supplier and should be worn on cold days.

 

Please note that non-uniform items of clothing should not be worn to school.  All items of uniform must be clearly named and to assist you in this, Perry Uniform offers a labelling facility.

 

We are looking forward to a whole school visit by Chris Jay from the charity Enable Me http://enablemeproject.org.uk on 11 October.  This is an enlightening experience where the children will develop their awareness of disability.

 

Best wishes.

 

The CHS Team

CHS News September 2017

Welcome Back 

We hope you all enjoyed the summer break and are looking forward to the new academic year.  A warm welcome to all of our families, old and new.  Teachers have had a busy few weeks preparing for the start of term and the school is looking bright and colourful. All of the staff are keen to get to know their new classes and settle in our precious new cohort of Junior Ones.

Building Work

You may notice that the building has had some renovations over the summer.  Mrs Hampton has been busy coordinating these works and the school is looking really smart.  The basement floor has been resurfaced with a non-slip laminate, providing better sound proofing for music lessons and orchestra and an ideal surface for little feet during dance or other physical activity.  The classrooms and landings on the first and second floors have been painted and we have beautiful new display boards on the ground floor landing for key information and displays of good work.

Staff Changes 

Mrs Hampton and Ms Grunewald are delighted about their new roles and about working with such as talented team of established and new colleagues. Look out for Dr Ashworth, our new Head of Music, Miss Broders, responsible for our new J1 Yellow group, Head of Art, and KS2 Art Teacher Christabel Forbes, fresh from exhibiting at the Daniel Raphael Gallery in Marylebone (see http://www.christabelforbes.co.uk/ for her wonderful artwork) and Holly McLatchie, our violin teacher, whom we are sharing with the X Factor! Mr Taiwo has become a more permanent fixture as our Head of Sport and has kicked off the term in Hyde Park with many of our pupils.

Events 

Alongside our rigorous academic curriculum, the Autumn Term is packed full of activities, culminating in some festive celebrations – the Christmas Plays and Carol Concert.

Games

Children in Forms One to Six should bring their kit in each Monday for games during the week and the full programme of activities is on the calendar.

The following extracurricular clubs will be running this term:

Clubs 

Monday Chess AM 8.15-8.45 Seniors 8.45– 9.15 Juniors
H/WK Club PM 3.45-4.30 F1 & F2
Tuesday Drama PM 3.30–4.15J1, F1 & F2 4.15-5.00F3-6
Weds 3.30-4.30 Compulsory Clubs F2-6
Thurs H/WK Club PMFootball PM 3.45-4.30 F1-6
Friday Football PM 3.30-4.30Hyde Park

J1-F6

 

Football

Please note that due to the overwhelming demand for Football Club we are now offering this after school session on both Thursday and Friday afternoons.

We hope to be able to organise some football matches on Thursday afternoons.  Therefore we recommend that more serious and committed players sign up for Thursdays and those who want to have a jolly good kick-about will join us on Fridays to finish off the week.

Charges 

The cost of the Homework Club is £10 per session for block bookings. This includes a drink, biscuit and a piece of fresh fruit before the session begins.

The charge for attending any one-off Homework Club is £15 per session, payable to the office.

Block Bookings

This will be £230.00 for all 23 sessions.

£120 for just Mondays (12 sessions)

£100 for just Thursdays  (10 sessions)

These charges will be added to next term’s school fees.

There will be no more than 12 children attending and this will be on a first come, first served basis.

All other clubs are invoiced individually by the specialist teachers. Please email Ms White if you would like more information.

Pick up Times

Please note the following pick up times:

  Mon(Senior Orchestra F4-6) Tues Wed (Clubs F2-6) Thurs Fri(Early finish)
J1(From 25.09) 3.30 3.30 3.30 3.30 3.15
F1 3.35 3.35 3.35 3.35 3.15
F2 3.40 3.40 4.30 3.40 3.20
F3 3.45 3.45 4.30 3.45 3.20
F4 4.30 4.00 4.30 4.00 3.30
F5 4.30 4.00 4.30 4.00 3.30
F6 4.30 4.00 4.30 4.00 3.30

 

Uniform 

The new uniform from Perry – our new supplier, looks very smart and we are really pleased with the quality.  Please be patient as there may be some teething problems such as stock availability of which we are aware.

Whilst the weather is still warm, pupils may wear their summer uniforms, but should be in winter clothing by Monday 2nd October.

Finally, we look forward to a productive and thoroughly enjoyable term!

The Senior Leadership Team

CHS News June 2017

 

Charity Fair

On Monday, 3rd July, in the afternoon, the children of Form Six will be organising an event in aid of Children With Cancer UK. They will be running a series of stalls in the dining room for the other year groups to visit during the afternoon. This particular charity was voted for by the KS2 children following presentations from each of the Form Six girls who talked about a number of different charities.

There will be traditional games of skill and chance, as well as refreshments on offer. Please send in with your child a named envelope containing no more than £10 for them to spend.

 

LAMDA exams

We wish the children who are taking their first LAMDA exams this weekend with Miss Horgan all the best!

 

Mr Taiwo

We are delighted to announce that Mr Taiwo will become our permanent games teacher from September. Already a very popular teacher with the children, Mr Taiwo will teach games, including football, and sports science to all the year groups.

 

Miss Karin Broeders

Miss Karin Broeders will be joining Miss Hayward in September as our new Reception Teacher. Miss Broeders has a BA Hons in English from The University of Western Ontario and a BA Hons in Education from York University, Ontario. She has QTS status and has been specialising in the Early Years for the last few years in the UK. Miss Broeders has trained in the ReadWriteInc Programme and has experience working with EAL children (English as an Additional Language). Miss Broeder’s personal interests are very diverse (ideal for a teacher): she loves English Literature, particularly Shakespeare, creative writing, drama, art and singing. She is an animal enthusiast, has a curiosity about living things and enjoys the outdoors and keeping active!

Miss Broeders will be spending some time with Junior One this term and new Junior One and parents will have the opportunity to come and meet her at the beginning of next term.

 

Mr & Mrs Alvanis

After an association of nearly 27 years with the school, we sadly say farewell to Mr Alvanis and Mrs Yoshida Alvanis who will be leaving Connaught House to concentrate on their music projects. Mr & Mrs Alvanis, both distinguished musicians, have shared the teaching of violin to our pupils for over a decade, providing them with a foundation of excellence in the learning of such a demanding instrument. We wish them all the best for the future.

 

Holly McLatchie

We have a lovely new violin teacher, joining in September, who is another alumni from the Royal College of Music. Holly McLatchie has taught at several well-known, London preparatory schools, including Heathfield House and St Benedict’s. She will be happy to teach individual pupils as well as establishing a violin group, depending on numbers.

 

Music Lessons

If you have not already done so and would like to enroll your child in extra curricular music lessons, please complete the music application form as soon as possible. As well as individual lessons, Miss Land (woodwind), Miss Brooke (guitar), Miss McLatchie (violin), Dr Ashworth (singing & piano) would all consider setting up group lessons. We will aim to facilitate all requests.  However, a wait list situation does sometime occur.

 

Our current Form Six have taken great advantage of the music on offer at CHS through the years. All read music, sing and play the recorder. The instruments they play between them now include the treble recorder, flute, saxophone, clarinet, oboe, guitar, piano, Russian Harp, drums and violin. Many have achieved Merit and Distinction in their ARBSM music grades.

Miss Land came in last week to give a presentation to the children about recorder and flute playing and it would be lovely for Dr Ashworth to have some up and coming musicians for the school orchestra next year.

 

CHS MUSIC NEWS

CHS MUSIC NEWS

 

Mrs Hopkins

We know everyone is now aware that, for family reasons, Mrs Hopkins is moving to deepest Essex which is sadly just too far away for her to continue commuting to CHS. During her tenure as Head of Music, Mrs Hopkins has added her own, inimitable sparkle to the music we have always enjoyed at CHS. There can be few CHS pupils, past and present, whose eyes do not light up at the mention of music and Mrs Hopkins. Yet the fun is always purposeful as the high standard of music at CHS bears testament to. It is a wonderful legacy for us to cherish.

 

Dr Ashworth

We are confident that Mrs Hopkins’ successor, a practising musician and teacher with his own style of musical joie de vivre, will be able to continue this legacy.

 

Dr Ashworth has an impressive CV, both as a musician and as a music educator. He has a doctorate from the Royal College of Music and has over ten years experience as a teacher and as Director of Music in London preparatory schools.

 

Dr Ashworth also has an emerging international profile as a composer with recent works including an opera for the International Opera Theatre in Città della Pieve, Italy. Admirably qualified and experienced to take on the role of Head of Music, he will also be able to provide individual singing and piano lessons for CHS pupils.

In addition, Dr Ashworth has met many of the children and has been impressed with their enthusiasm and high standards. He is keen to expand the children’s performing opportunities. We look forward to welcoming him to CHS in September and anticipate an exciting music year ahead.

 

Summer Concert

In the meanwhile, we are looking forward to the Summer Concert at the Steiner Hall next Friday, 16 June.

CHS News May 2017

Boys for 11+
We have been thrilled by the positive responses and feedback from existing and prospective parents and are already looking forward to preparing our first cohort of boys for the 11+.  
 
Supporting our local school community
Recently Miss Grunewald has been in great demand acting as a guest adjudicator. Today she is judging the poetry at North Bridge House School and next Friday she has been invited to Wetherby Prep Poetry Competition. 
 
Summer Term School Clubs
The children have all been enjoying the extra-curricular clubs on Wednesday afternoons. The Junior Forms (2 & 3) have been exploring the many types of local flora and wildlife that Hyde Park has to offer in their Habitat Studies with Mr Westerman and Miss Arthur. Needless to say, our Junior Art Club run by Miss Pack and Miss Weston, has been a huge hit. The Senior Forms (4, 5 & 6) have been energetically playing Touch Rugby with Miss Steel, Miss Hayward and Miss Pluskowska or employing their creative skills in Jewellery Making with Miss Grunewald and Mrs Walsh.
 
After School Football Clubs
The Friday Junior Club is full to overflowing and looks to be a great success. A trickle of girls into the Senior Club on Thursday means that Mr Taiwo will be happy to welcome a few more participants – girls should not miss the opportunity to join the biggest women’s team sport in England!
 
Summer Concert Music Auditions on 23 May (F2-6) & 24 May (F1)
The auditions will be held on Tuesday, 23 May for Forms Two to Six and Form One’s auditions will be on Wednesday, 24 May (as they are out on a school trip on Tuesday). 
Mrs Hopkins will speak to each form group about signing up and the children must remember to bring their music and their instrument (if required) to the audition on Tuesday (23rd).  Any child who studies an instrument, whether in or out of school, is most welcome to audition.
 
NSPCC Fund Raising
Thank you for the marvellous contributions received on behalf of the NSPCC which totalled over £900.  This is especially generous of parents when it followed on from the recent Readathon donations.  Incredible support!
 
Summer Uniform
Just a reminder that we are in May and all children should be in summer uniform.
 
Miss Mayer’s Marathon
Congratulations to Miss Mayer who completed the London Marathon on Sunday, 23 April, a course of over 42 kilometres/26 miles to raise money for Cancer Research. We are proud to say that Miss Mayer is one of several CHS teaching staff who have competed in marathon runs over the last few years to raise money for charity. A very big thank you from Miss Mayer to the CHS children and staff who turned out to support her!
 
Best wishes.
 
The CHS Team