21 May 2020
The Upper Sixth are gathering online to mark the end of their education at Woldingham on Friday afternoon. As their ‘Brave New Wold’ study programme draws to a close, which this week has featured lectures on philosophy and economics, as well as live sessions on cookery and car maintenance, they will have a fun afternoon of speeches, shared memories and a quiz, organised by the Senior Ribbons team.
In the final Sixth Form assembly earlier in the week they, and the Lower Sixth, were treated to a fantastic short art lesson from Mr Cullen and Miss Reay in Monday’s assembly. Taking inspiration from the theme of windows, Miss Reay’s and Mr Cullen’s enthusiasm for paintings from Rothko, Hopper and Magritte, as well as medieval stained glass windows, showed how these window images took people into another world.
Bringing their theme up-to-date with our present lockdown situation, Mr Cullen and Miss Reay reflected that with so much of our lives being on-line at the moment, computer and phone screens are our current windows into another world.
Two of last year’s Upper Sixth leavers, Becky and Talitha, ran a session in this week’s ‘Mind the Gap’ section of the Year 11 programme on top tips for successful A Level study and getting the most out of the experience.
In this week’s assembly, filmed from a lovely vantage point by the sundial, looking down at Main House, Mr Nunes looked back at the first half of term. With the help of a story from his childhood about a fox and lion, Mr Nunes told his students that familiarity can destroy fear and that although at the start of term many of them had felt uncertain about what lay ahead, they had approached everything with resolution and adapted well to this new way of learning. The wonderful feedback he has received from tutors and teachers was further testament to this.
Mr Nunes hoped Year 11 students were all as proud of themselves as he is of them. He also asked them to think about the magnificent job their tutors have done this term – it has been a time of uncertainly for staff as well – and to take a moment to thank them this week. He concluded by wishing them all a relaxing and enjoyable half term.
Mrs Norman set Year 10 thinking about what a superhero is and whether they are all fictional. She suggested that to a child, maybe they are. But perhaps to an adult, they are not. Instead, they are role models. People you identify with and admire. People who make you want to be a better person. Mrs Norman had asked some members of staff for their superheroes. In addition to well known people, such as Bill Gates and Stephen Fry, these included family and friends and Spiderman and Batman also featured. One contributor picked a characteristic from each of eight people – famous and family - to make up their perfect superhero.
Mrs Norman asked the students to think about their superhero/es, suggesting these might be people who have inspired them, helped them through big challenges, or put others before themselves. Something for them to ponder in half term.
262 Marden and Year 9 students completed online exams across the globe this week. Despite a few technical issues for a small proportion of students, the week went smoothly. Heads of Year Miss Owen and Mr Kellaway would like to thank the girls for using their initiative, parents for helping supervise, and all the staff who have spent a number of hours writing papers for remote exams and training themselves on the website used. Miss Owen feels that the girls have become more self-reliant and a bit more resilient throughout this week and that exams going forward in more ‘normal mode’ will seem a breeze.