As ISI have recently confirmed, Daneshill is an excellent school in many ways. We celebrate the breadth and depth of our curriculum, the commitment of our teaching staff and the homely and supportive nature of our culture. However, there are a few moments in each academic year which elevate the children and the school to an even higher and almost intangible level. They are the lump in your throat, sting in your eye, hairs on your neck moments when you realise just how special Daneshill children really are. They represent that magic formula which you wish you could bottle, shelve and sell. I’m referring here to the spellbinding performances of the houses during the house singing competition on the Friday before half term. To witness the Year 2s, taking part in their first inter-house contest, singing with gusto and confidence from the front. To take an emotional rollercoaster from the comedy of a Freddie Mercury impression to the ghostly rendition of ‘Flashlight’ by candlelight to the thigh-slapping joy of ‘Can’t Stop The Feeling’ to the rather apt finale of ‘Best Day of My Life’. It was exhausting and exhilarating in equal measure and the audience were enthralled from start to finish. Congratulations to Blue House for prevailing in the face of mighty opposition but we were all winners that day for being present in a moment of that unique kind of Daneshill excellence which truly goes beyond excellent.
The Button Box
This week Year 4 performed a musical called The Button Box, in which they took their audience on a journey around the world. The play was about two grandparents who tell their grandchildren the origins of the special buttons in Granny’s button box. A wealth of cultural and historical concepts were interwoven as each story was revealed through song and dance. The production showcased a variety of musical styles including Australian Aborigine, Chinese, Jamaican, African, American, Indian and Irish, as well as music hall, pop and sea shanty. There was even a song devoted to chocolate! Year 4 demonstrated their super singing talents, including solos and part singing. They may well find themselves humming the tunes for a while yet!
In Reception we have continued with our topic of minibeasts! We can’t wait to show them to you when they are complete. Thanks to the beautiful weather we managed to use the school grounds to hunt out as many minibeasts as we could find. Next half term we will look at ‘Transport’. This is a very busy and exciting term as we transition into Year 1.
Our Year 1’s donned their explorer hats on Tuesday as they set off on an adventure to The Living Rainforest. With over 700 species of plants and animals to learn about across 3 glasshouses, we knew that we had an exciting day ahead of us. Before we could even begin to discover all the interesting plants and creatures, we had a very important job to do on arrival; inspect the adventure playground and all the various equipment it had to offer! Needless to say it got a rather large thumbs up from our excitable children. Once our tour guide was ready, we were transported into a rainforest filled with avocado trees, tropical plants and animals such as rather chatty exotic bird named Luigi. We learnt about the climate and location of the rainforests and all that inhabited these areas. We were so proud of our pupils’ impeccable manners and fantastic general knowledge. This was confirmed to us by our tour guide who commented “The last group I showed around did not know as much as these children…and they were Year 10!” A wonderful day had by all and a special thank you to our brilliant parent helpers Mrs Downs and Mrs Fitzgerald.
The sun came out this week and so did the creativity of Year 2. As we read about the final mischief made by the cheeky character Puck, in ‘A Midsummer Night’s Dream’, the children were inspired to create their own magic potions on the page. Adults will be extremely pleased to hear that there was even a potion that, when applied with a specific number of drops, children were enchanted to do exactly as they were told by their parents! We enjoyed the weather in Maths as well, as we went outside and played with water, all the while learning about litres and millilitres; as well as imagining that potions and spells were being measured and created. A magical week for Year 2!
The Pre-Prep Teachers
Monday 22nd May
U.13 Girls vs. St Neot’s W 5 – 1
U.11 Girls vs. St Neot’s W 4 – 2
Wednesday 24th May
U.13 vs. St Neot’s L by 5 runs
U.11 A vs. St Neot’s W by 39 runs
U.13 A vs. Marlston House L 10 – 20
U.13 B vs. Marlston House L 8 – 12
U.11 A vs. Marlston House L 12.5 – 13.5
U.11 B vs. Marlston House W 12.5 – 11.5
U.10 A vs. Marlston House W 15.5 – 12
U.10 B vs. Marlston House W 25 – 16.5
The game of cricket we played on Wednesday was a very thrilling and close affair. Unfortunately we came out on the wrong side of the result but it could have been so different, alas, it was not to be. St Neot’s won the toss and elected to bat; a common tactic there as the wicket gets slower and slower as the match goes on. We bowled fairly well, limiting our wides and no balls to a fraction of our previous tallies. George Munn was miserly, not allowing the St Neot’s boys any freedom, and David Wilson and Thomas Dyer in particular bowled very well, snaring 2 wickets each and limiting the St Neot’s batsmen. We restricted St Neot’s to 109 which was always going to be tough to chase on that pitch but was by no means an unsurmountable obstacle. Our chase started very well with George Munn getting us off to a flyer, a quick fire 15 put us ahead of the curve. Jack Pocock and Thomas Dyer then solidified the innings but credit to St Neot’s as they bowled well. We couldn’t quite put away the bad balls and St Neot’s gained the upper hand as we scored 9 runs in 5 overs but did preserve wickets. Unfortunately Jack was bowled and Thomas Dyer then put on a great partnership with Harry Burleton, bringing us back into the match and all but winning it. However, both got out and it was left to the following batsman to complete the job. With 2 overs to go, at 100/4 we were still in the box seat but St Neot’s knew how to bowl on their pitch as they pitched the ball up and incoming batsman found it difficult to score. This resulted in wickets falling as, under pressure we were unable to get the run a ball we needed. St Neot’s ended the match as victors and we were left to look at those little things, a wide here, a bye there, a misfield or a single not taken over there, as you do after a cricket loss. It’s back to the drawing board for us as that loss was very disappointing but I thought Jack again captained very well with good field placings and proactive bowling changes. Onto the next game!