A ‘Little Bit’ Wet!

The first thing to say about this week is that I have been in school and I have been visible. Hopefully Imogen (Year 3) has noticed and I am back in her good books. Having established that, let’s have a look at what the pupils, and I, have been getting up to.

Having prepared an assembly for Monday morning, I was taken by surprise when Amy and Sarah from Hitchin Library turned up to launch this year’s summer reading challenge. It had all been booked in, of course, and in my diary, but the hectic nature of this time of the year meant it had completely slipped my mind. At least I have next week’s assembly planned in advance.

The launch of the summer reading challenge

Pupils will have brought home information relating to this year’s challenge and it would be lovely to celebrate pupils who have successfully completed the challenge in an Achievers’ Assembly at the start of the new year.

One of the key events this week has seen a team of gymnasts take part in Hitchin Girls’ School’s gym and dance display. They had a dress rehearsal on Monday morning, before performing in the Wednesday matinee and the two evening performances. I went along on Thursday as a very proud Headteacher (and HGS trustee) and was so impressed with the quality of our routine. Well done to all the gymnasts and a huge thanks to Mrs Jarman, Mrs Wells and Mrs Williams for their hard work in preparing the routine.

It was also lovely to see many former Whitehill pupils performing in gymnastics and dance routines, many of whom made sure I gave them a smile from my seat. Isla worked particularly hard to get an acknowledgement!

Tuesday saw the return of the Year 6 Enterprise Day. This is an event which hasn’t featured in the curriculum since before Covid and it was interesting to see its latest evolution.

A huge success!

The pupils were split into cross-class groups of four and then given a £10 budget. The challenge was to come up with a game or activity which the rest of the school could get involved with and which would turn in a profit. Of course, the more enjoyable the activity, the more chance there was of maximising this profit.

I was approached by Tilly and her group to see if I wouldn’t mind getting a little bit wet and have water bombs thrown at me. “It’s all for a good cause!” she pleaded. How could I refuse? I did go and support and joined them for the arrival of the Year 4 and Year 3 pupils and had a great time. There was a slight error in Tilly’s description, however. I didn’t just get a ‘little bit’ wet!

A little bit wet!

The whole day was wonderful. The pupils worked so hard and proved themselves to be entrepreneurs. The total profit for the day was £712.51 (and one Euro!).

On two evenings this week, we have carried out transition tours for pupils joining us in September. Predominantly, but not exclusively, from Highbury, myself, Mrs McConnell Smith and Mrs Burniston took the pupils around the school in three groups taking in key points of interest as well as visiting their classrooms and of course, the teaching teams.

The pupils return again next Thursday when we have our transition day. We look forward to seeing them all again for a more formal occasion.

Our special orchestra assembly this week was lovely

I paid a visit to Orville Class this week to see some of the computing work they were doing. Both Mrs Vernon and Miss Payne were keen for me to see the programming they had done. The results were impressive and the explanations the pupils were able to give me, even more so.

Mrs McConnell Smith found her true calling on Wednesday as director, script writer, casting director, production editor to name but a few, when Hitchin TV visited. We are working on a project to produce a short promotional film highlighting the work we do at Whitehill, the links we have with Highbury, and the journey pupils would take through the two schools. I think it is worth remembering that if pupils do the Highbury – Whitehill journey, they spend longer here than they do there and so I wanted a way to show Whitehill off and we felt this was one possible medium.

It was a very long day and only half of the process. Hitchin TV will spend time at Highbury School now and then reduce what will probably be around 10 hours of footage to two minutes of video. I really can’t wait to see the rough cut.

Thank you to those parents who gave up time to record a little voiceover or smiled at the camera on the playground.

I don’t normally attend the dress rehearsal of the Year 6 production, but having been banned from anywhere close to the hall over the last few weeks, I thought I would take up the opportunity to see it for the first time, before watching three more times next week. I am so glad I did!

I won’t give anything away

I won’t go into details now, just in case there is a Year 6 parent amongst the one or two people who actually read this blog. In addition, we are keeping everything crossed that my dad might actually be able to come in on Monday afternoon to watch the matinee. If he does, perhaps I should invite him to produce some copy for this blog. Then he might see why they are as long as they are!

We have been watching the weather all day and as I type these last few paragraphs, the team from the Friends’ Association are frantically setting up for this evening’s Summer Social. It’s dry at the moment; let’s hope it stays so. I hope to see many of you there.

Looking ahead to next week, as already mentioned, we have the three performances of the Year 6 production. We have a two-show day on Monday and then another performance on Tuesday evening.

We spoke with the Year 5s about positions of responsibilty in Year 6

Also on Monday, we have our Year 4s out on a trip, visiting the Hindu Temple. This is a lovely trip and I know the staff are all really excited by it.

We have interhouse rounders on Wednesday as well as an opportunity for some of our pupils who take singing lessons to give a recital to show what they have been learning in their lessons.

Thursday is a big day for all of our students. It is transition day and so we lose our Year 6s who visit their new secondary schools but gain the current Year 2s who will become our latest cohort. All other pupils spend the day with their new teachers to find out what it will be like from September. I will be writing out to parents with a little more detail about the optional parent visit that afternoon.

Friday looks relatively straight forward until around 6.00pm when we have the Year 6 ‘leavers’ party’.

I must dash now to go and help with our Summer Social. Anyone fancy a drink?

Have a great weekend.

Best wishes,

Steve Mills

Have a great weekend.



All comments (3)

    There is definitely at least one year 6 parent reading your fab blogs every week! 🙋‍♀️

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