The term continues to progress at a seemingly very rapid pace and half term, being only two weeks away, is suddenly appearing on the horizon. With varied lessons, lots of sport and numerous other activities during the day, the boys continue to give their all and whilst some are starting to show signs of tiredness, they remain a pleasure.

Conker season is well and truly upon us and some Middle School boys have amassed collections to rival any local squirrel and their acorns – it’s lovely to see a traditional pastime once again being so popular. Sadly, we cannot offer ‘Conker Club’ in school (as I have been asked on numerous occasions by keen boys!) due to modern Health and Safety guidelines (what is the world coming to?) but perhaps with the correct ‘protective clothing’ this is something we can consider in the future. Parents beware – your stocks of vinegar may be under threat!

On a more serious note, many Y6 boys have begun their important interview process for senior schools and those with their interviews still to come are receiving some advice and guidance from Mrs Brownsdon as part of their preparations. She has spoken of confident yet humble boys, who ‘sell themselves’ but equally are empathetic and considerate towards others – the important hallmarks of our fine young men. We wish our Y6 pupils well and we are sure they will do themselves proud.

Next week sees Y6 Parents’ Evenings (details below) as well as other events such as informal concerts, sports fixtures and the usual busy days here at The New Beacon – please read the following notices carefully.

Tom Probert

Y6 Parents’ Evenings
A reminder that Y6 parents’ evenings are next week, on Tuesday (6A and 6B names B-H) and Thursday (6B names K-Z and 6C). Teachers will be available in The Studio (New Beacon Centre) from 4:45pm until 7:00pm. Tea and coffee will be available for all and whilst we appreciate the complexities of childcare arrangements, a reminder that parents’ evenings are for adults only. Appointments with your sons’ teachers are not necessary, and colleagues who teach academic subjects will be available for the duration of the evening. Teachers of non-academic subjects will also be available until 6:00pm. We look forward to seeing you on these important evenings to discuss your sons’ progress and development.

Please note that Y5/Y6 Model Making will not be taking place this Tuesday as there is a clash with parents’ evening.

Y6 Informal Concert – Monday 9 October, 4:00pm.
Following on from last week’s successful Y5 Informal Concert, Dr. Maslin warmly invites parents to come along and enjoy next week’s Y6 event in Music Room 1. Details of performances are below and we look forward to enjoying what is sure to be a lovely musical occasion.

Kyle L6APiano
Nathan R6ASinging/piano
Myles C6ASinging
Max G6APiano
Jack W6BTrumpet
Alex K6BTrumpet
Olivier B6BSinging
Onize B6CPiano
Max S6CPiano
Alex W6CDrums/tr
Sean Q6CGuitar
Alex N6CSinging/Violin
Charlie F6CPiano

Y6 Atom Preps
A reminder that whilst we gear up for the ISEB tests, Y6 boys are being set Atom in place of humanities preps and it is our expectation that these preps will be completed. It has come to our attention that some boys are not completing all tasks set, and we will monitor this closely going forward with a view to following this up with parents if needed. Your support in this matter is, as ever, appreciated.


Imago School Photographs
Please follow this link to view and purchase your child’s school photograph. Don’t forget to place your order by 2 November and take advantage of free delivery to school.


Snack Reminder- NO NUTS!
A reminder that breaktime snacks and any other food/drink brought into school should not contain any nuts. We have had another near miss incident previously where a boy brought in birthday cupcakes that said ‘contains nuts’. Please ensure you read the label of anything you bring into school to ensure it is nut-free.


Reflective Armbands
When boys return to school after the half term break it is a requirement that, with the darker mornings and evenings, they wear their reflective armbands to and from school. These need to be pinned to their outermost garment and clearly named. If your son requires a new set of armbands, this will be arranged by your sons’ Form Tutors and the cost added to your end of term bill.


Water bottles
The forecast for the early part of the coming week predicts unseasonably warm weather for October so a reminder that boys must have a named water bottle in school every day. This is especially important for Games afternoons when they could quickly become dehydrated if not suitably furnished with liquid refreshment.


Late arrivals to school
If your son arrives late to school, a reminder that he must be dropped off at the main school reception and then he must sign in with Mrs Hoffmann at Matron’s Dispensary. It is vital that your son signs in, in case of the unlikely event of an emergency (such as evacuation due to fire) when we need to know exactly who is school – or not. Similarly, if you have been given permission to collect your son early, he must sign out using the ‘Signing Out Book’ outside the main school office upon collection.


Idling Engines
Some may not realise that by leaving the engine running for convenience or to keep the heater or air conditioning running that you are contributing to harmful particle emissions that can damage your son’s health. Every minute your vehicle is idling, it produces enough emissions to fill 150 balloons. It goes without saying, if all vehicles stop idling, there would be a significant improvement in the air quality for our boys on the school campus. We respectfully request that you switch off your engine whilst waiting for your son at the end of the school day or if you are stuck in the traffic on the drive around the school.


Head’s Art Competition
Calling all budding artists, the inaugural Head’s Art Competition is running until the end of half-term giving plenty of time to pick up pencils/paintbrushes/oils or crayons! The entry should be A4 size but can be portrait or landscape and the theme for this term is ‘New Beginnings’. The winning entries will be exhibited in Mrs Brownsdon’s Study.


Christmas Cards
In a long-standing tradition, Mrs Jackson has been working with your boys in Art lessons on their festive card designs and further information on how to order cards to send to lucky friends and family will be following in the next couple of weeks.


A reminder that any outstanding permission slips for the summer Y6 residential to PGL must be returned to Mr Woodard as a matter of urgency. Whilst the vast majority of boys have replied, there are a few still outstanding.


BBC 500 Word Competition
Budding Authors Take Note!
The BBC have recently reintroduced a competition for children (5 – 7 years) and (7 – 11 years) to write a short 500-word story.  This represents an opportunity for our/your boys to fire their imagination and write a creative piece. Any interested participants will need to create their stories and submit them to the BBC from home. This a wonderful opportunity for boys to harness their creative potential and take part in a national competition. All entries must be submitted directly to the BBC no later than Friday, 10 November 2023.

Click here to access the BBC website which covers how the competition is organised, prizes, judges etc.  In addition, there are multiple videos covering:

  • Who am I? Creating characters.
  • What happens next? Building a plot.
  • Wonderful words and fantastic phrases
  • Finish with a flourish
  • Edit, improve and read aloud

Good luck to any budding authors!