Daneshill Diary 31/01/14

Headmaster’s Notes

During the Christmas holidays I was fortunate enough to spend time with my family in Cornwall.

The forces of nature were obvious for all to see with the crashing waves and gale force winds. Such things can be very exhilarating if you are watching from dry land and are able to retreat to the comfort of a home that is not devoid of all major utilities.

The continual wet weather and subsequent flooding has taken its toll on many areas of the UK. Whilst we suffer the daily challenge of the school run we have mostly escaped from the severity of the weather.

At school the pupils have overcome the difficulties of the wet weather and so far the sports programme has survived.

Heavy, muddy rugby pitches are not necessarily conducive to the development of skills but the boys have already demonstrated that there is a strong potential throughout the year groups. Mr Croker’s enthusiasm for the game is a force to be reckoned with in itself.

Hockey, on the other hand, benefits form astro turf and no self-respecting hockey player would accept anything less. The acquisition of an outstanding coach in the shape of Mr Tahker has inspired many pupils, both boys and girls, and the improvement in skills has been evident in such a short space of time.

The school continues to adopt the approach of employing sports specialists as the benefits are plain for all to see.

I have been really impressed that on cold, wet, miserable days the pupils’ enthusiasm for all things remains at the forefront of their approach to the challenges of the day.

Mr Simon Spencer

Year Two visit Intech … and the stars!

5, 4, 3, 2, 1… and Year 2 take off to the ‘Winchester Science Centre’, Intech.

There were so many hands-on experiences for the children to enjoy on this trip, with new discoveries, investigations and lots of fun being had by all. Taking on the role of a Space Explorer and discovering the wonders of our galaxy in the Planetarium, where the children were able to sit back and learn about our ‘Neighbourhood Earth’, was certainly a highlight of the day. As the lights went down the children were delighted to have the opportunity to stand on the stage and become the orbiting Earth as it spun around the Sun. As the roof opened there were squeals of awe as we caught our own favourite stars and discovered the mythology behind them.

We were thrilled to see how this experience captured the imagination of the children and look forward to discussing what we have learned next week … and beyond!

Year Two Teachers

News from the Pre-Prep

This week the children in Reception have been learning about Africa. They have been making good use of the African Safari Jeep role play area, looking out for different animals through binoculars and independently writing the animals they see on a list. We have enjoyed looking at the story of ‘Handa’s Surprise’ and have created wanted posters for the naughty animals stealing Handa’s fruit! In Maths the children have been counting and adding fruit, as well as making a fruit graph. Outside, the new trikes have been a great hit and provide an excellent opportunity for the children to develop their gross motor skills.

On Tuesday Year One went to The Look Out Discovery Centre and had a fantastic day full of science investigation. The children thoroughly enjoyed the hands-on exhibitions where they learnt through play. Following this the children engaged in an interactive lesson about how light and sound travels, and we encourage you to ask your children to explain more about the sounds made by a bucket and a piece of string. One highlight was the new ‘Build It’ zone where the children had to develop their team building skills to construct a house and position the tiles on the roof.

Miss Bridget Bull

Nursery Corner
We have turned the Nursery role play area into a bird hide this week and I am pleased to report that it has been used by some extremely keen birdwatchers! We are very lucky in the Nursery to have such a great outdoor area that has such an abundance of birds visiting it from Blue Tits, Chaffinches, Great Tits, Nuthatches, Robins and, of course, the Great Spotted Woodpecker. The children are beginning to recognise the birds and are eagerly marking their sightings on the tally charts.
I have a few more aeroplane destinations to put on to our world map. We certainly have extremely well-travelled children at Daneshill!
This week we have completed our ‘Ten bears in a Bed’ display which will act as a large visual representation of numbers to ten. Numbers and counting form an everyday part of Nursery life and the children are thoroughly enjoying exploring different ways to look at numbers.
Next week we will continue to look at the different birds, making a chart of how many different species of birds that we can see around the school grounds. If we are lucky (and it stops raining!) we may venture out on a walk to look for some birds further afield.
Miss Kate Flood
FOD Update: Quiz Night
A quick note to announce that FODs will be running a Back to School Pub Quiz on Friday 7th March from 7:30pm -10:30pm. This will be an informal general knowledge quiz night with a cash bar and pub-style platters!
Teams of 6 can enter at a cost of £100 per team (to include food and a bottle of wine). Individual tickets (where parents will be allocated a team) will also be available on request.
More information will follow next week so keep your eyes peeled!
Mrs Sophie Gavin (parent)
NSPCC Fundraising
Earlier in the week, Emma Le Maitre from the NSPCC came to talk to the children about the vital work that Childline does, inviting the pupils to help others by raising vital funds to support the work of the NSPCC.
Please look out for sponsorship forms and activity sheets that will be heading home with your children today. If you would like to help make a difference and participate in this activity, please ensure that the form and sponsor money are returned to school by Friday 14th February.
The money that we raise at Daneshill School will make a real difference to children’s lives and your support is very much appreciated.
Mrs Suzy Dixon
Sporting Fixtures
Boys Girls:


Wednesday 29th January

First XII vs. Holme Grange W 59 – 5                U13 A vs. Leighton Park W 3 – 1

Colts A vs. Holme Grange W 55 – 10              U13 A vs. Leighton Park W 1 – 0

Colts B vs. Holme Grange L 45 – 50                U11 A vs. St Mary’s W 6 – 0

                                                                        U11 B vs. St Mary’s W 13 – 3

                                                                        U10 A: Tournament at St. Andrews, results as follows:

                                                                                    Daneshill vs. Marlston B D 0 – 0

                                                                                    Daneshill vs. St. Hughs L 0 – 2

                                                                                    Daneshill vs. Dolphin W 1 – 0

                                                                                    Daneshill vs. St Andrews L 1 – 2

                                                                                    Daneshill vs. Marlston A D 1 – 1


Friday 31st January                                           

U9 A vs. Holme Grange L 30 – 15

U8 A vs. Holme Grange W 18 – 5

U8 B vs. Holme Grange D 6 – 6

U8 C vs. Holme Grange L 7 – 0


Last Friday saw the start of the Cross Country season with a mixed competition at St Andrews School. 48 boys and girls from Years 4 – 8 braved the elements (and copious amounts of mud!) to slip and slide around the 1km course in an attempt to be the fastest finisher. The competition was fierce, with around 30 runners in each race, but the Daneshill pupils rose to the challenge and ran their socks off, scoring valuable points for the School and helping us to achieve 5th place overall out of the 8 Schools competing. Every Daneshill competitor should be extremely proud of themselves: a gallant effort by all!

We have had another good week on the hockey pitch with the U10’s competing in a tournament at St Andrews School on Wednesday. Mr Takher was delighted with the progress the girls have made in the past week; it is encouraging to witness the children demonstrating their newly acquired skills brilliantly in game play. They also displayed great team work and camaraderie during the competition, which was excellent to see. The girls finished in joint 5th position overall: well done girls.

The U13 and U11 teams had great results too this week with the U13’s beating Leighton Park 3-1 and 1-0 and the U11’s soaring to victory against St Mary’s with results of 13-3 and 6-0. Fantastic results girls!

Miss Kate O’Neill