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Pre-Prep News, Friday 10 February


I write this after our wonderful Celebration Assembly this morning.

From Mrs Ross

I am sure that you will agree that this was the perfect ending to our half term!  Thank you to all who were able to attend. It was lovely to share so many aspects of the boys' learning with you all.  I was particularly impressed by the boys' infectious enthusiasm when singing.  Year 1's performance of 'Scary Castle' was truly spellbinding.  Equally impressive, however, Year 2's partner singing and percussion work shop, and Reception's singing confidence, which has grown enormously since our last Celebration Assembly.  "Thank you" to Mr du Plessis and Mr Burton for their fantastic work with the boys.

I wish you all a very happy Half-Term break and look forward to an exciting second half of the Lent Term.

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Pilgrims' Shell Awards

  • Year 2 – to  to Finn M for his thoughtful behaviour towards his friends and teachers. 
  • Year 1 - to Liam P for being a fabulous member of our Year 1 class.  For gaining in confidence over his time in Year 1 and learning so much!  Good luck in your new school Liam!  (Liam and his family are heading back to America during half-term.)
    and to Ian L - for being and kind and helpful member of Year 1 who is always ready to support his friends.
  • Reception - Arthur J for showing kindness, and sharing with others.

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Diary dates

Diary dates Times The week ahead
Monday 20 February 0830 Term resumes
Tuesday 21 February 0900-1500 Year 2 trip to the Hawk Conservancy
Friday 24 February 1000-1100 Pilgrims' Play (for pre-schoolers)
Monday 27 February   Whole School Book Week
Tuesday 28 February   Visiting author, AF Harrold
Thursday 2 March   World Book Day and Dress UP Day!
(Boys and staff dress up as favourite book characters)
Friday 10 March 1500 Pre-Prep Cathedral Assembly


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Menus - Please find a link to next week's menus here, on My School Portal. 

Message from the Head Nurse, Nicki Beaumont:

This is a reminder to all parents and guardians that we have boys with severe allergies to certain foods, and therefore have a policy whereby no food is to be brought into the school and/or given to boys at any time, especially at Sign-Out.
Some boys are so allergic to allergens like sesame and nuts that even their smell is enough for them to have a severe reaction. Please could you help us with disseminating this information to family and friends to keep our boys safe.
Many thanks.

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From the PPA

To book tickets for the PPA Quiz night, please go to My School Portal and select the Bookings tab. Then choose the PPA Quiz form.


The first column.


Year 2

Year 2 carried on their data journey this week. In partners, they decided upon a subject they wanted to research amongst the rest of the class: favourite animal, favourite colour and birthday month were the subjects chosen. The boys set about choosing the question they would ask their peers. When clipboards were in their hands, they were extremely professional researchers! Once their peer group had been exhausted, Mrs Pleming and I were duly questioned. Mrs Walker was accosted as she walked past! Thankfully, Year R and Year 1 were also happy to accept these budding market researchers into their classrooms too as Year 2 were not ready to give up their clipboards just yet! Back in the classroom and the boys’ knowledge of using the spreadsheet tool, 2Graph, on Purple Mash was put to the test as they were challenged to work independently with their partner to input their data, drawing on the skills that were shared with them last week. I was most impressed to see the whole class log on independently and find their way to Purple Mash and to start using the table to input their information without much assistance at all! Some interesting information has come out of the Year 2’s research: Did you know that no one in the Pre-Prep has a birthday in July? Did you know that the favourite colour of the Pre-Prep boys is gold? Interestingly, only three boys chose worms as their favourite animals! 


In other non-data related news, we visited the Briggs Library, with the kind support of Mrs Brill and Mrs Leslie. The boys were shown the non-fiction section and were allowed to choose a library book to bring home for half-term if they wished. What a treat! The boys were admirably behaved and hugely excited to spot an AF Harrold display (the author who shall visit us after half-term) which the boys have been introduced to via our current class reading book, The Boy Who Ran Away From the Circus and Joined a Library. We look forward to returning after half-term. 


Both in class and in assembly this week, the boys have discussed the subject of this year’s Children’s Mental Health Week, 'Let’s Connect'. We thought about little ways we could connect with others around us – family, friends and our community – and pass on a little kindness at the same time. The boys came up with some wonderful ideas about being kind at home – playing a game with your Grandparents that you know they enjoy, helping lay the table for supper, making your bed in the morning, helping your mum make lunch. They also came up with some wonderful suggestions about being kind at school – sharpen your friend’s pencil, let someone go in front of you in the line, hold the door open for someone else, play with someone you don’t usually play with, make sure you say thank you, smile at someone and, perhaps the favourite idea tested throughout the afternoon, tell someone a joke to make them laugh! JM Barrie famously said, “Always try to be a little kinder than is necessary.” This shall continue to be at the forefront of our minds when we return after the half-term break.  

If this wasn’t an action-packed week already, we also found the time to welcome Mr Buck, our resident African safari guide, into the classroom to talk about his favourite subject: AFRICA! Through stories, videos, photos and books, he helped the boys to further their knowledge of “The Big 5”. Ask the boys some of the interesting information they found out about lions, buffalo, elephants, leopards and rhinos. We were particularly interested to learn about the Black Mambas, the all-female non-violent anti-poaching unit protecting the rhinos from poachers. 
Mrs Ford


Year 1

What a busy last week of this half-term we have had in Year 1.  The boys have enjoyed learning about the Battle of Hastings, who was involved, where it took place, who they thought should have been the next King, after King Edward, and whether they thought it was fair or not. It was very interesting to hear the boy's thoughts on the four potential 'King candidates' who could have taken over the throne after King James died.  Do ask them about the four!  Why would Edgar not have been a good choice?  Why did William think he should rule England next?  Why did Edward choose Harold?

Maths this week concluded with the use of the Surface Go devices.  A maths website called 'Top Marks' was used to consolidate the boys understanding of 'fact families', and both addition and subtraction number sentences.  They had fun working in pairs to complete number sentence questions to see if they could score as highly as they could on each set of 4 questions.  This website is a great resource which you may like to look at together with your son at home over the half-term break.

Preparation took place ready for our celebration assembly with guests, this week.  The boys chose what they would like to share with you.  This may have been something they really enjoyed completing or something they are very proud of.  I hope you were able to come and enjoy celebrating the boys efforts with us.

Finally, I am sure you would all like to join me in wishing Liam and his family the best of luck with their return to America.  You have been a fabulous part of our Pilgrims' community and will be missed very much.  Liam, good luck in your new school and show them what an 'expert' you have become all round!

Have a well deserved half-term break.
Mrs Huntley


On Monday morning the Reception boys had a fabulous visit to Winchester Cathedral to learn about William Walker, the man who saved the Cathedral ‘with his bare hands’.

The visit included a walk down to the flooded crypt and a brief play on the organ. The boys behaved impeccably, listening in awe to Emma as she explained how William Walker worked for six years, having one day off each week. As any visitor would be, the boys were distracted by the sound of the organ, and they were delighted when they were invited to have an impromptu play by the organist, Claudia. We moved upstairs, in the glitzy lift, to see a replica of William Walker’s diving helmet and other artefacts made from the wood that had been saved from underneath the Cathedral. On our return to school the boys each had a turn at sketching William Walker or his helmet. We hope you enjoyed seeing our artwork in assembly this morning?!

Thank you to Emma Bourner, Winchester Cathedral Safeguarding Manager and also one of our School Governors, for a wonderful start to our Monday morning. We cannot wait for our return visit to see the Green Man and subsequently, when the water levels decrease in the Summer term, the tunnels underneath the Cathedral.
Mrs Kent




Thank you to Mr Lombardo, who has helped the boys to create their own submarine pictures using the Surface Gos. 

The boys confidently shared their imagination and enthusiasm while drawing their submersibles.

Photos from our Cathedral visit


Forest School 

This week in Forest School we thought we would cast some spells to help spring arrive. Bouncy wands were created using willow sticks, fir cones and bits of ribbon and wool. The boys had a lovely time casting their spring spells around the arboretum. We will see if they have worked after half-term!

Year 1 became outdoor artists this week and created their own natural paint using chalk. Some of the boys also had fun making their own paint brush out a stick and leaves, which required them to use their knot skills too. We even set up an art gallery to display their work.

At the beginning of our session today, the boys revealed the ice art they created last week and proudly hung it in the trees for everyone to see. The boys then combined their artistic skills with nature, and created some wonderful huge natural letters. We discovered that some letters were easier to make than others. Can you identify some of the letters we made? Some of the boys were introduced to hammering, and started making some adorable hedgehogs with nails and a wooden disc!
Mrs Walker















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