Happy New Year

Welcome back everyone after our lovely Christmas break. We are rested and ready to embrace the learning and life of school again.

Straight after registration this morning we gathered in the hall to hear about this morning’s whole school SCIENCE INVESTIGATION.

As I write every child is working with a 30cm square piece of tin foil and aiming to design the boat that holds the greatest number of 1p coins. The buzz in the school is wonderful – the tension is mounting as we near finding our winning designs.

Thank you Mrs Casewell for leading science at St John’s so well and inspiring us to think like scientists.

Watch our website to see exactly what we learnt and see our class boat winners.

‘Born in a Barn’ Bonanza!


What a wonderful finale to a busy Christmas term! The children have all worked exceptionally hard; learning lines, songs and dances. They have impressed us all with their performance and star quality! Our show certainly dazzled and shone with plenty of gold medallions and neon glowing halos. We could have given every child a halo for their outstanding efforts individually. We are sure that you enjoyed it as much as we did too!


Reception have completed our Space topic and I wonder how many of the children are now aspiring astronauts?

In Year 1 we are now expert puppet-makers, having completed finger, hand and sock puppets. We have had great fun writing scripts for our puppet shows and performing them to be recorded on iPads.

In Year 2 we finished learning how to write a set of instructions effectively. The highlight of our learning was writing instructions for how to make jelly, making it and then finally eating it! Wobble wobble!

We wish all of you a very merry Christmas and a peaceful New Year.

Miss A, Mrs T and Miss P.





Happy Christmas

We have had such a splendid end of term filled with wonderful entertainment. Our excellent Nativity and carol service were the result of huge dedication and hard work on the part of the children and their teachers. Thank you to all of you at home for the great support you’ve been giving to the learning of lines and song words.

I was horrified when I realised, at the end of the carols, that I’d failed to thank Fiona Henry for her magnificent singing. Her rendition of O Holy Night accompanied by Sarah Marsh was breath taking and reduced a good number of us to tears. I have since spoken to Fiona and thanked her. I am delighted that she and Sarah are hatching a plan for a musical soiree in the spring.

So, as I write, KS1 are at the Stag watching the panto while KS2 enjoy Christmas fun in their classrooms. What a lovely week it’s been! I wish you all a happy Christmas, a restful holiday with plenty of special family fun, I look forward to seeing everyone rested and ready for Term 3 on Tuesday January 3rd.

St John’s Advent Service

On Sunday the school’s Advent service was a great way in which to bring the school and the church community together.

The school choir and their families joined the church congregation for the service with the children reading all the prayers and singing the Scots Nativity.  Fr  Matthew gave an excellent sermon explaining to the children that the next four weeks were a time to prepare for the real meaning of Christmas as well as enjoying all the festivities.

There are a number of photographs displayed in the church dating from the 1940s up to the present day and these have brought home to me how just how important St John’s and the old Bayham Road school have been to the church and the wider St John’s community over the years.  This exhibition of photographs is certainly worth seeing.

Christmas Term

The last month of the Christmas Term is always busy with a huge variety of enjoyable events.

Last Friday was Quiz Night where the competitive spirit of parents and staff was apparent as teams put their heads together to answer the wide ranging questions compiled by Mark Semple, the Quiz Master,  and David Stringer.  There was cheese and wine aplenty and in the end it was a close run thing with no one seen to be “phoning a friend”!

On Tuesday evening a Reading evening took place for parents where  Sally, Sarah Grimble, Liddy Clark and Jane Gillhauley explained how reading is encouraged throughout the forms and gave advice to the parents who came on how they can best help their children at home. These sessions have proved to be extremely useful and very worthwhile.

Thursday the 24th saw the last of the Open Mornings for new parents.  Over 20 families came and listened to the choir practising before a talk from Sally and Sophie.  The children from Form 5 then showed the prospective families round the school, visiting the different classes, talking to the staff and walking to the school fields.  Once again the children were the stars of the morning in the way they spoke naturally and freely about their school.

Year 4 Music Concert – Monday 5th December 9.30m

We would like to invite parents and carers of Year 4 pupils to a brief concert on Monday 5th December at 9.30am. We think you will be impressed with the superb progress the groups have made. The music team led by Ms Marsh are an ambitious lot; 60 pupils all playing their string and brass instruments is music to their ears!

While the children and Ms Marsh get set up you are invited to gather in the small hall where pre-concert refreshments will be available.


Life at St John’s – Cross Country and the 1987 Hurricane

Sport is just going from strength to strength with Sheralyn Silvester leading an impressive school culture of doing your best and going that extra mile to really achieve outstanding results.  This was shown on Wednesday when a Primary Schools Cross Country run was held at Radnor House.  There were about 120 children taking part in each of the four races.  It was so encouraging to see all the St John’s runners do so well.  McKenzie Copp came second in the boys years 3/4 race with Lily Ridler 4th and Anya Huppack 10th in the girls 5/6 race and Alfie Chart 5th in the boys years 5/6 race.  To cap it all St John’s were runners-up in the Team competition for years 3/4 boys and years 5/6 girls – not a bad afternoon.

Last week I went in to see Form 1’s work on the damage caused in the South East from the October 1987 hurricane.  The children had obviously learnt a great deal which their writing and drawing showed with some imaginative descriptions.  Sam Kemp had managed to obtain a vast quantity of newspaper cuttings and copies of Bob Ogley’s books on this devastating event.  I then answered many interesting questions thought up by the children.  Then today I joined From 1 for their nature walk to the Vine and was greeting by what seemed like an invasion of Stone Age children and their teachers walking around the school.  It seemed that Form 3 were having a Stone Age day with a visiting Stone Age expert to help them  experience what it would have been like to live at that time.

We had a very productive morning on the Vine firstly seeing the post hurricane oak trees and then following up Form 1’s class work by drawing leaves and finding out the perimeter and height of the trees.  After a sit down to eat biscuits we walked back to school.  A perfect morning weather wise and with Autumn approaching there were many different coloured leaves starting to fall.