The Magic Porridge Pot, Sir David Attenborough … and lots more!

The Magic Porridge Pot

Well done Yellow Class (Year 1) and the teachers for their wonderful class assembly, ‘The Magic Porridge Pot’. Considering how early on in the term it is, they did phenomenally well to sing, dance and speak their parts so clearly. It certainly cheered us all up on a very cold morning!

Yellow Class
From Lanzarote to John O Groats!

Last week we welcomed back the pupils after the Easter break and I have heard excitable children talk about visits home and abroad, hot and cold, on dry and wet lands. If education is supposed to broaden the mind and prepare children for the years ahead, then it is clear that for Unicorn children the educational value of these holidays compete favourably with the more traditional education they get at school.

Sir David Attenborough’s film launch on Richmond Park

Unicorn has a good reputation within the community and Ultra Violet’s (Year 6) trip to the Royal Geographical Society to see a film launch on Richmond Park and to meet Sir David Attenborough this week is just one example of how we join in community events. Off the back of this, we have been able to forge relationships with more local schools and are hoping that an art exhibition will result from it. It is coincidental that we have started a Thursday Club, ‘Richmond Park Rangers’ this term where, among many other activities, the children will be reminded of the importance of ‘treading carefully’ in the park.

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Our local community and further afield

I am not sure we all fully recognise the links we have with the local community and other communities further afield, and to appreciate the support we continue to give; a list of links we currently have, or intend to develop include:

• our charities for this year; Duchenne UK and Strathmore School in Richmond
• Orange Class (Reception) and the Unicorn Singers visits to the Avenue Club (and their visit to us)
• Our Bursar transporting local elderly people in the school minibus, through our contact with the Kew Neighbourhood Association
• trips to and from Queen’s School, to hear visiting authors
• supporting local and national music concerts including, Richmond and Kingston Music Festivals, and recently the Music for Youth National Festival
• Unicorn is also used regularly for external music exams
• we are embarking upon a relationship with Tseda First Cycle School, an elementary school (ages 7-11) of 438 pupils in Ethiopia – more details to follow.

This is not an exhaustive list, but gives you some idea of the work we do within our community and beyond. There are also plans for further connections with local schools through the arts and sports. We are currently submitting our application for an Artsmark award and reading through our submission reminds me of the wonderfully broad education the children receive at Unicorn. In a time of concerns over the direction of education generally and the dangers of a narrow curriculum, it is heartening to know that Unicorn pupils are getting a proper, broad education, learning a range of skills and developing their confidence.

Visits from the children

On Wednesday I had visits from various pupils throughout the course of the day, proudly showing off their work to me. Pupils in Green Class (Year 2) were delighted to talk about their recent studies in RE lessons, Blue Class (Year 3) were very proud of their work on addition, following on from a lesson I had observed earlier in the day, and then Amelia and Kezia in Indigo (Year 4) read me their stories that have got them shortlisted from a massive 131,798 entries in the BBC2 National 500 Words creative writing competition – many congratulations to them.