Shrike’s Call | July 2017

 

It is almost inconceivable that the month of July has sneaked in and we find half of that month having disappeared in a flash and a blur!. This is obviously attributed to the vast array of activities that we encounter. Weekdays and weekends are full to the brim with happy children participating in some form of activity outside their usual academic and sporting programme. A busy school is a good sign of a happy school and the smiles on the children’s faces say it all.

The Grade Seven children all wrote their Form One Entrance Exams at their preferred High School on Saturday 1st July and they have begun to receive their results. I have received personal visits from the respective High Schools all congratulating the school on magnificent results. The academic standards are high and we will of course continue to strive to get even better. Of course we also need to recognize and congratulate the teachers for teaching the children. These results do not only come from the input of the grade seven teachers, but from all the teachers throughout the school. It is a seven year academic programme that produces the results.

D6

At last our D6 Application is up and running and we hope that you have all downloaded the link onto your smart phone, laptop or desktop.  This will ensure better communication and keep you up to date with any changes especially with matches and change of venues. A vast array of information can be extracted from this application and the school is progressively loading more and more information onto it. For instance whenever we play matches against another school the match programme for the day including the times are loaded. This means that you do not need to be given a programme of events upon arrival as it will be on your phone! In essence you will find: News, Calendar events, Multimedia/photographs and videos as well as the usual notice board on the application.

Grade 5 Fairy Tale Day

Last Thursday, 22 June, our children in Grades One and Two were treated to a wonderful morning by the Grade 5 children who wrote, told and acted their own Fairy Tales. They also learnt about all the elements found in the fantasy genre. The little ones thoroughly enjoyed their morning as did the Grade 5 children who acquired skills on how to address and perform to a different audience. This is a tremendously valuable educational experience for all the children and it was priceless to see the glee and excitement on the children’s faces.

Agriculture

The New Curriculum that the Ministry of Education has introduced has resulted in schools focusing intently on Agriculture. Whitestone School has, as a result, fully embraced this. Going back in history an Agricultural section was opened and named after two pupils (Bruce and Conrad May) whose lives were tragically taken away in a motor vehicle accident whilst travelling to school. Over the years this area slowly became overgrown and reverted to natural bush with a rusty fence and much neglected buildings that used to house chickens and rabbits. We are very pleased to announce that this area has been completely refurbished. There is a brand new fence around the area. The orchard has been cleared and the fruit trees attended to. The vegetable and herb section has been developed and we have installed micro jet irrigation. The children are all motivated and excited and have made this a great learning area. The produce reaped from the vegetable section is already being used in the kitchen!

Of course we would like to continue to develop this area and we need to get the chicken and rabbit section going again. If anyone has chickens or rabbits to donate we will gladly accept them. We also need to revamp the hutches as soon as we can find funds for that. We are in need of a few more fruit trees. There is a vermiculture (Worms) project being established which will of course provide nutrients for the soil.

Grade 6DC Chapel Play – “The Resurrection”

Jesus performed many wondrous miracles in his life.  In our R.E. lessons, we have been talking about ‘Faith’ and how Jesus performed miracles to prove that he was the Son of God.  The Resurrection of Lazarus was one such miracle and Grade 6DC performed this short play for the school chapel last week.

The weekly school chapel services presented to the children are one of the many highlights that the children look forward to. It certainly promotes the Christian ethos of the school and the children are exposed to traits of good citizenship and healthy living.

Remediation

The Remedial Department in the school is vibrant and extremely busy. Children attend set lessons for academic areas that they find challenging and then rejoin their classes for the rest of the day. In this way they are not stigmatized and enjoy all the activities of the mainstream. Mrs Thompson has performed wonders this year in particular in helping children to understand difficult concepts and equipping them with relevant learning strategies to enhance their understanding.  Of course this facility is for children of all grades and the demand is huge. We actually are looking at expanding this facility next year.   Below are images of Grade Two children at work in the remedial room.

Inter-Provincial Hockey Tournament

Whitestone School will once again be hosting the Inter-Provincial Hockey Tournament at the Khumalo Stadium on the 21st and 22nd July.  Preparations have started for this very prestigious event.  We congratulate the following boys and girls who have been selected to represent Matabeleland this year and wish them good luck in this Inter-Provincial Tournament.

Garrick Duff, Aidan Waterfall and Matthew Rust

 

Nicole Matukutire, Hailey Banda, Serena Rix and Emma Price

Matabeleland Rugby

Wow!  What can we say?  Congratulations are extended to the following 11 boys who have been selected to represent Matabeleland in the Owen Davis Rugby Tournament at Hillcrest Preparatory School on the 5th August, 2017.  We wish them all the very best.

Huntsman Williams, Connar Cahill, Sonny Brebner, Liam Maingehama, Daniel Widdop, Tatenda Runyowa,

Richard Rayner, Matthew Rust, Garrick Duff, Tristan Burton and Nathaniel Hlabangana (NTR)

Tackie Day

On the 30th June, we once again supported the ‘Island Hospice Tackie Day’ at Whitestone School.  Thank you to each and every one of you for supporting this wonderful cause.  Whitestone raised $654, 00.

Grade 00 Open Day

We are very excited to be starting a Grade 00 in January 2018 and on the 21st July we will be holding an Open Day for prospective Grade 00 parents.

Food for Thought

T. HARDING
HEADMASTER

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