Welcome back to school and Happy New Year to you all!  What a super start to 2024 for our pupils; Sevenoaks covered in snow and a brand new Nursery building to explore for our younger pupils!  They have enjoyed exploring their new setting eating their lunch in the Dining Room, and it has been lovely getting to know all our new pupils.

Please take the time to read through this page as well as our Highlights link found at the bottom of the page. There is also some information regarding the Big Garden Birdwatch below which we would love all our pupils to participate in.

Other Dates
There are a variety of activities that happen each term, all of which can usually be found on the calendar.  Here are some to highlight for you.

Mon, 22 JanAuthor Sue Hendra visiting Nursery and Reception
Mon, 5 FebChildren’s Mental Health Week
Wed, 7 FebSafer Internet Day
Wed, 7 Feb (5.30-6.30pm)The Reception ‘Bedtime Read’
Fri, 9 FebLunar New Year Workshop
Sat, 10 Feb – Sun, 18 FebHalf Term
Mon, 19 FebShrove Tuesday Assembly
Fri, 23 FebOpening Morning for Prospective Parents
Wed, 28 FebReception Trip to Polka Theatre, more details to follow
Mon, 4 MarEarly Years Book Week
Thurs, 7 MarWorld Book Day
Week of Mon, 11 MarParent’s Consultation Evenings and Whole School Science Week
Fri, 15 MarRed Nose Day
Wed, 20 MarEnd of Term (finishing at 12pm)

Open Day
On Friday, 23 February the school is having an Open Morning for prospective Parents. Please do spread the word to anyone you think may be interested in coming along to view the school.


Big Garden Birdwatch – RSPB Initiative
We are working with the RSPB to encourage the Big Garden Birdwatch.

The Eco Warriors showed an interest in helping the birds through the winter with bird feed, and with birds more generally.

Please click here to register for the Big Garden Birdwatch.  You spend an hour watching the birds in your patch, between Friday 26 and Sunday 28 January, and record the birds that land.

There is no joining fee for taking part although some may wish to donate.  The website above will give you everything you need including:

  • A how to guide
  • Coloured pictures of all the relevant birds
  • A tally form for your results

The Eco Warriors are keen to get as many boys as possible taking part. We will be promoting this to the boys in assemblies next week with details of the importance of this initiative, together with pictures of the relevant birds (around 15) and we hope you will be able to help the RSPB in the world’s largest wildlife survey.  Please let me know if you have any questions – charles.hutchison@newbeacon.org.uk


We have a lovely selection of foods on offer each day, including a hot lunch and a dessert as well as a salad and fruit self-serving station. Click here to see this term’s menu.

I look forward to meeting you all if I haven’t been able to yet and wish you all a very prosperous and healthy 2024.

Mrs Taylor
Head of Early Years


Welcome to Theo, Monty, Joshua, Henry, Harry, Max and Owen and their families. The boys have all settled in really well and are enjoying following the routine of Nursery. We are practising tidying up after ourselves, but this may take a little more time to master!

Swimming will start on Tuesday for everyone who attends on a Tuesday. Any questions please ask Mrs Beresford. Can all swimming forms be returned on Monday, if we haven’t received the form, your child will not be able to swim. If you need a new form, please ask.

A gentle reminder that funding forms also need to come back in next week.

Due to settling the children in this week, we have let parents into the main room. However, from next week we ask that everyone waits in the entrance hall, and we will bring the children out to you.

Starting next week, Mrs Taylor will be doing Read Write Inc. sessions with Nursery to introduce them to phonics. Some of our older children are already learning this scheme but it may be new to some of our new children.

Have a wonderful weekend and we look forward to another fun packed week next week.

Mrs Beresford & Mrs Griffiths


The Reception Bedtime Read
We are holding our annual ‘Bedtime Read’ on Wednesday, 7 February, and we hope that all the children in Reception will be able to join us. The aim of the evening is to provide the children with an opportunity to enjoy some stories together before bedtime, whilst raising the profile of reading and promoting the enjoyment of sharing stories with each other. The children need to arrive back to school by 5.30pm to the main Pre-Prep Central Area entrance. The dress code is pyjamas, slippers and a dressing gown and they will need to bring a favourite teddy with them to snuggle, and perhaps a torch. Siblings are also able to attend. This is such a magical evening and we hope that all of you will be able to join us. For more information and to sign up for this event, please click here.

Snow Timetable
Following the excitement of Monday’s snow, we are pleased to share our contingency timetable for snow days for the PP & Junior School (Reception – Year 4).  As in previous years, the first day of snow in any one week will be a fun day for the boys to play in the snow and go for walks etc..  From the second day, we will implement our snow timetable.  As you will see, the timetable covers the usual curriculum with most lessons being taught ‘live’ on Teams and boys being encouraged to come together with the wider community during assemblies.  We would suggest that you and the boys remind yourselves how to log onto Teams, just in case we have inclement weather in the next few weeks.

Any issues with logging on or school e-mail should be addressed to Mr O’Prey, who will contact you as soon as possible.

Reception Online Learning Timetable


Hats, Gloves and a Scarf!
Please encourage your boys to talk about what they have been learning about winter weather, what to wear to keep warm, how ice melts as well as other things such as hibernation and migration. Please remember to send in their hats, gloves, and a scarf! It has been very cold this week and will continue to be too! It is also useful for them to wear trousers when it is cold.

Reception Curriculum

Each term we have a different focus for our learning intentions. These are areas we hope to cover over the term, and there are always areas we cover when those special moments arrive. Please see below a list of activities and areas we will be focusing on this term.

Language and Literacy
Continuing to develop listening and speaking skills in small and large groups.
Daily phonic work using the Read Write Inc. Scheme.
Continue with emergent (independent) writing and guided writing.
Pencil control, writing patterns, handwriting practice and letter formation.

Recognition and ordering numbers to 20 (and beyond).
Practical and recorded addition and subtraction to 20 (and beyond).
Position and Direction.
Number bonds to 10.
Counting and Money.
Time and sequencing of events.

Special Topics
Winter and Seasonal changes.
Snow and Ice – animals and people that live in cold countries.
Mother’s Day.
Easter – the story and meaning of Easter.

Swimming Lessons
The general advice is that if a child has symptoms that are above the neck, such as a runny nose, cough, or sore throat, they are considered fit for swimming. On the contrary, if symptoms are below the neck or include a fever, it is advisable to keep the child out of the pool.

Swimming is a crucial part of our school curriculum, and we strongly encourage all students to attend their swimming lessons when in school. If your child is well enough to be in school and not on antibiotics, they should be participating in their swimming lessons.

To address any concerns about post-swimming comfort, we take additional measures to ensure the boys dry themselves thoroughly after the lesson. Moreover, we make sure that jumpers, fleeces, coats, and even woolly hats are put on for added warmth when leaving the pool.

We understand that the health and comfort of your child are of utmost importance, and we are committed to providing a positive and safe swimming experience. If you have specific concerns or questions, please feel free to reach out. We value open communication and are here to address any individual needs or considerations.

If your child is not going to swim, please can you email sarah.bridgeman@newbeacon.org.uk to let me know. Otherwise, a spare kit will be given to your child for their lesson.

Thank you for your understanding and cooperation as we work together to make swimming lessons a rewarding and enjoyable part of your child’s education.
Sarah Bridgeman

Other Notices
Next week we will be continuing with winter and winter holidays! Please send us via Teams any photos you have of winter activities you have done. There is also a Teams assignment about our Christingle Service today, which you can read more about in the Highlights link below.

Please can you bring in any empty toilet roll tubes for a project next week.

Have a lovely weekend

Mrs Taylor & Mr Braidwood