Mowdenhall Mowden Hall School is a leading independent coeducational day and boarding preparatory school. 2019-05-10T14:38:43Z http://www.mowdenhall.co.uk/feed/atom/ WordPress Debbie <![CDATA[THE BELLS OF ST JAMES’ RING OUT!]]> http://www.mowdenhall.co.uk/?p=20423 2019-03-28T10:18:26Z 2019-03-28T10:18:26Z   THE BELLS OF ST JAMES’ RING OUT! 27 March 2019 On the last day of the Spring Term, there was great cause for...   Read More

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THE BELLS OF ST JAMES’ RING OUT! 27 March 2019
On the last day of the Spring Term, there was great cause for
celebration at St James’, Newton, with the inaugural ringing of the new
bells by the Mowden pupils. Eight lucky children under the watchful
eye of their expert instructors, marked the beginning and end of a
thoughtfully-constructed service conceived and led by Linda Hunter.
The events of Holy Week, from Palm Sunday to Jesus’ resurrection on
Easter Morning, were illuminated by explanatory talks, appropriate and
enthusiastically sung hymns, and readings and prayers delivered with
clarity by the children. The Choir, augmented by a goodly number of
parents and staff, produced a stirring performance of the ‘Come and
Sing’ anthem, ‘Let it Be’. At the end of the service, our thoughts
returned to the belfry with a poem by Carla Lanyon Lanyon, read by
Simon Hampton.
Thanks to all who contributed in any way to this special occasion.

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Debbie <![CDATA[‘New Beginnings’ Pre-Prep Day of Dance]]> http://www.mowdenhall.co.uk/?p=20418 2019-03-27T13:04:57Z 2019-03-27T13:04:57Z Friday, 22nd March The team from Newcastle Dance Centre, led by Miss Hayley Conway came to Mowden last Friday, and worked with the Pre-Prep...   Read More

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Friday, 22nd March

The team from Newcastle Dance Centre, led by Miss Hayley Conway came to Mowden last Friday, and worked with the Pre-Prep children to produce the most amazing ‘New Beginnings’ themed dance session.  

The children performed their ensemble of ballet, classical, jive and street dance to tunes of “Happy” by Pharrell Williams and “Can’t Stop The Feeling” by Justin Timberlake with aplomb.

The Theatre was teaming with families and friends, who were extremely complimentary about the performance. It was a very enjoyable afternoon – well done to all the children.

For more photos of the dance session click here.

 

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Debbie <![CDATA[A Round Up of The Spring Term’s Drama Productions]]> http://www.mowdenhall.co.uk/?p=20341 2019-03-28T11:28:37Z 2019-03-26T13:52:31Z SPRING TERM DRAMA PRODUCTIONS This term, parents, friends, pupils and staff have been treated to two outstanding drama productions from the three lower year...   Read More

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SPRING TERM DRAMA PRODUCTIONS

This term, parents, friends, pupils and staff have been treated to two outstanding drama productions from the three lower year groups.

 

THE ARTHURIAN CONNECTION

Year 6 rose to the challenge of realising Simon Hampton’s sophisticated, thoughtful script, with an impressive performance of ‘The Arthurian Connection’, an exploration of the themes of good and evil inspired by legends of the Knights of the Round Table.  Through their encounter in the present day with Merlin, Ann and her companions travel with him back to Camelot and the age of chivalry, and then forward to the dystopian horror of the Black Ward, a planet ruled by the cruel despot Scouad.  Witnessing the contrasts between the two worlds, and the terrifying final confrontation between Merlin and his evil counterpart Vilius, Ann’s eyes and heart are opened and, in the poignant closing scene, she parts from Merlin knowing she has found her ‘Arthurian connection’.

 

Terrific effort from the whole year group, with strong individual performances from several cast members, and some committed singing of the evocative musical numbers, held the audience’s attention throughout.  Mr Fowlds’ dramatic incidental music, expertly played by a small group of musicians, complemented the action perfectly.  There was much to admire visually too, the set featuring a stunning replica of Merlin’s oak tree and further enhanced by the back-drop of Duncan Davis’s wonderful photographs.  Dramatic lighting and first-rate costumes and make-up topped off a truly excellent all-round collaboration.  Well done, Simon Hampton – one of your best!

 

CLOUD TEA MONKEYS

 

Two weeks after half term, it was the the turn of Years 4 and 5 to present their joint interpretation of the Mal Peet/Elspeth Graham book ‘Cloud Tea Monkeys’.

 

Little Tashi lives with her mother in a tea-growing district of the Himalayas.  While the women pick the tea under the eye of the unpleasant Overseer, Tashi plays with her friends the monkeys. But one day, Tashi faces a crisis which she can only resolve thanks to the help of the monkeys, and the discernment of the Royal Tea Taster.

 

Becky Hadfield, Penny Kay and Kate Martin skilfully and patiently guided the children through the process of crafting their own play from this delightful story.  Involved in nearly every aspect of the production, from writing the script, creating the artwork for the projections to designing the programme, they even found time to learn a great deal about tea along the way!

 

Meanwhile, the superb costumes were being fashioned by the clever fingers of Maria Rogers and Leonie Serbrock, six contrasting songs, some with an Eastern flavour, were being prepared, and plans drawn up for the set, props, lighting and make-up.

 

The result was a triumph – beautifully paced, affectionate and utterly charming.  Who could resist the adorable Year 4 monkeys, with their masks and ‘swishy’ tales!  These children demonstrated improvisation skills and a stage awareness that belied their years. The older children, playing the human beings with clarity and confidence, had obviously been encouraged to think deeply about the characters they portrayed and how they could bring them to life on the stage.

 

Everyone brought their absolute best to the final performance, and the warm applause from the audience showed how much their efforts had been appreciated.

 

For more photos of these 2 spectacular performances click here

 

 

 

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Debbie <![CDATA[SPRING CONCERT, ST ANDREW’S CHURCH, BOLAM, 19 MARCH 2019]]> http://www.mowdenhall.co.uk/?p=20323 2019-03-22T18:20:24Z 2019-03-21T12:24:31Z   A packed St Andrew’s Church, Bolam, was treated to a wonderful display of talent from Mowden Year 8 pupils on 19 March.  This,...   Read More

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A packed St Andrew’s Church, Bolam, was treated to a wonderful display of talent from Mowden Year 8 pupils on 19 March.  This, the second Mowden Hall Spring Concert at the venue, was a true collaborative effort, with the entire year group contributing to the success of the evening, many in more than one capacity.  Whether performing vocal or instrumental solos, readings and recitations, singing in the choir, making programme announcements or meeting and greeting the audience, every child was involved. Even the beautiful Spring-themed programme had been designed by the pupils.

From Freddie’s stentorian opening Pipes number to Sam’s dazzlingly virtuosic closing Violin solo, the concert flowed flawlessly.  In a thoughtfully-constructed programme, the variety of moods and emotions communicated through the participants’ singing, playing or speaking held the audience’s attention throughout.  Nancy had everyone laughing with her recitation of ‘Warning’ by Jenny Joseph; a few tears may have been shed during Isla’s solo song ‘Don’t watch me Cry’; a hushed intimacy was tangible during Mr Hampton’s rendition of Philip Larkin’s ‘Church Going’; and it was impossible to resist the infectious, toe-tapping energy of Matilda and Shannon’s ‘Charleston’ Flute duet.  These offer only a flavour of the evening’s delights and all the performers should be commended for their skill, poise and courage.

It was a great treat for the Mowden Choir to renew its partnership with members of Bolam Choir, enabling both singers and listeners to enter a different aural world.  The first of their two contrasting joint numbers, ‘Amazing Grace’, featured a hauntingly beautiful opening solo verse from James A. which threw into even sharper relief the richness and colour of the ensuing four-part choral sound.  For an encore, the children performed Cindi Lauper’s uplifting ‘True Colours’ – and they certainly showed their true colours at Bolam.

After an hour of captivating entertainment, the inviting array of refreshments kindly provided by the Church was most welcome, and everyone returned home or back to school thoroughly satisfied. Thanks to the size and generosity of the audience, many of whom had travelled a considerable distance to attend, a handsome sum was raised from the retiring collection, to be divided between the two nominated charities, JDRF and the Bolam War Memorial Fund.

Congratulations to every member of the Mowden Year 8 for a superb effort, and thanks to everyone who contributed towards the concert in any way.  I’m especially grateful to Mr Hampton, Mr Fowlds and Mrs Lord for all their input, to the peripatetic staff for helping prepare the soloists and to Bolam Church for once again welcoming us so hospitably.

MR

20/3/19

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Debbie <![CDATA[Science Week 2019]]> http://www.mowdenhall.co.uk/?p=20312 2019-03-22T17:56:34Z 2019-03-21T08:49:40Z   The theme for this year’s Science week was ‘Journeys’ and during Science lessons the children enjoyed taking part in practical challenges such as...   Read More

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The theme for this year’s Science week was ‘Journeys’ and during Science lessons the children enjoyed taking part in practical challenges such as parachute making, glider and spinner design and building bridges. However, the highlight of the week was the visit by Professor Brainstorm who presented an Explosive Science show! The children were transfixed by the array of experiments he performed and he was never short of a volunteer to help him on the stage! Demonstrating, disappearing water, the spark explosion and investigating forces using a balloon on a bed of nails, we learned a lot about forces, pressure and polymerisation. The potato gun and the liquid nitrogen demonstrations were perhaps the most exciting; who would have thought you could hammer a nail into wood using a banana?

For more photos of the week click here

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Debbie <![CDATA[World Maths Day]]> http://www.mowdenhall.co.uk/?p=20294 2019-03-13T11:34:09Z 2019-03-13T11:34:09Z We have a had a busy week so far! On Tuesday the children particpated in World Maths Day. There were puzzles galore around the...   Read More

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We have a had a busy week so far! On Tuesday the children particpated in World Maths Day. There were puzzles galore around the school for the children to try. In Maths lessons the staff and children devoted a day to puzzling.
We wanted to show children the many ways there are of learning maths, and primarily that maths is for everyone at every level.
Fiona, one of our amazing kitchen staff made a fabulous maths themed cake. Who knew maths could be so tasty!

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Debbie <![CDATA[A Week in the Spanish Pyrenees]]> http://www.mowdenhall.co.uk/?p=20288 2019-03-11T09:54:04Z 2019-03-11T09:54:04Z I arrived in Toulouse to be greeted by a wonderfully cheerful Australian accent, it belonged to Miss Strickland, the Sauveterre Houseparent and she would...   Read More

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I arrived in Toulouse to be greeted by a wonderfully cheerful Australian accent, it belonged to Miss Strickland, the Sauveterre Houseparent and she would be driving myself and Mr Lamb back to Sauveterre before setting off to the Spanish Pyrenees the following day. Also joining us at the airport was the very familiar and very excited face of Mr de Ressiguier. It was so lovely to see him again.
We arrived at the Chateau de Sauveterre to the welcome of many. The children were all so excited to see us, however mostly to see Mr de Ressigueir as his presence was a complete surprise to them all!
The following day I was given a tour of the Chateau in glorious 18 degree sunshine. What a fabulous place for our Year 7’s to spend a term. I was also taught the rules but sadly didn’t get to play, the infamous “Mr Woods”. After lunch we packed up the bus and set off to the the Pyrenees.
Our week of skiing was amazing and I really do feel I speak for the vast majority when I say it was such an enjoyable and exhilarating week for all. Wide, open slopes. Blue blue sky with no sign of any clouds, picturesque jet streams from various planes and the dark green trees made for a picture postcard surrounding.
It felt fairly quiet, almost like we had some of the slopes to ourselves if not for the excitable whoops and cheers as one Sauveterrre Beanie group spotted another! On piste, in the fun parks, the snow parks, on chairlifts, button lifts, gondolas- you couldn’t miss us! Groups varied in ski level ability but often crossed paths during the day, a collective “super group” would be formed much to the delight of the children.
Evenings were spent perusing the local town, playing babyfoot (table football) and pool or chilling out in the hotel. We were spoilt with choice when it came to mealtimes. An entire giant middle station solely dedicated to delicious desserts- my kind of hotel!
Wednesday night was a highlight with the children and also the staff who got to dance, jump and floss their energy away to the rocking sounds of “DJ Pujol”, a tutor at Sauveterre with many a hidden dance move talent!
I recall a conversation with a frustrated beginner skier at the start of the week. Aching feet and legs, they wondered if they would ever enjoy skiing. Fast forward only 2 days and they were talking about who they could go on ski holidays with in the future. “Skiing is the best thing EVER” they said, “I can’t believe I don’t want to take these boots off now!” The sense of pride in having overcome the difficulty of learning a new skill bought about so many more advantages to such a wonderful week. New friendships have already been forged during the start of their Sauveterre term, but this week bought about so many more opportunities for collective excitement, entertainment, challenges, laughter, support, encouragement, praise and solidarity within the group.
A thoroughly enjoyable experience!
Miss Serbrock
House Mistress.

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Debbie <![CDATA[Growing Up Green]]> http://www.mowdenhall.co.uk/?p=20255 2019-03-08T15:03:06Z 2019-03-08T15:03:06Z A recent study this week has published that being surrounded by green space in childhood may improve mental health of adults. It has been...   Read More

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A recent study this week has published that being surrounded by green space in childhood may improve mental health of adults. It has been found that children who grow up with greener surroundings have up to 55% less risk of developing various mental disorders later in life. The study from Aarhus University, Denmark, shows that children surrounded by the high amounts of green space in childhood have up to a 55% lower risk of developing a mental disorder—even after adjusting for other known risk factors such as socio-economic status, urbanisation, and the family history of mental disorders. Researchers have found that, for example, noise, air pollution, infections and poor socio-economic conditions increase the risk of developing a mental disorder. Conversely, other studies have shown that more green space in the local area creates greater social cohesion and increases people’s physical activity level and that it can improve children’s cognitive development. These are all factors that may have an impact on people’s mental health. We all know how happy we have been feeling in this spring weather enjoying the sunshine, but just going to school in this naturally green environment can also have long lasting effects.
Kirsten Knight

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Debbie <![CDATA[Accelerated Reader Award and World Book Day Assembly]]> http://www.mowdenhall.co.uk/?p=20252 2019-03-07T13:17:20Z 2019-03-07T13:17:20Z On Monday the 4th of March our World Book Day Celebrations commenced with an exciting assembly. Mr Hampton introduced the idea of creating a...   Read More

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On Monday the 4th of March our World Book Day Celebrations commenced with an exciting assembly.

Mr Hampton introduced the idea of creating a virtual Mowden Hall book shelf, with all children and members of staff adding their favourite novels. By the end of the week we are sure to have quite a shelf full!

We were thrilled to introduce the fantastic author L.J Ross who kindly shared her story about how she became an author. At the end of her story she presented the Accelerated Reader Award to the children, who were noticeably beaming.

The assembly concluded with  Mr Bailey explaining why we received the AR award.

 

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Debbie <![CDATA[Year 3 Go Wild!]]> http://www.mowdenhall.co.uk/?p=20249 2019-03-05T10:22:59Z 2019-03-05T10:22:59Z Year 3 have been getting up close and personal with nature! The children have enjoyed taking part in the RSPB’s ‘Wild Challenge’, and we...   Read More

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Year 3 have been getting up close and personal with nature!

The children have enjoyed taking part in the RSPB’s ‘Wild Challenge’, and we are pleased to announce that, last week they received their Bronze Award having met the criteria required to complete the Bronze Award level.

The ‘Wild Challenge’ is a scheme for schools run by the RSPB encouraging children to help wildlife and explore nature.  This is ideal for pupils at Mowden Hall School as we love to inspire our children to connect, care and understand the nature around us, enabling the children to work towards these Awards within their Woodland Classroom School sessions.

 

The children studied the wildlife surrounding the school, and looked at the variety of animals within the school grounds, exploring and identifying their habitats.

We focused on birds and made a variety of different bird feeders, everyone was amazed to see the broad variety of birds that visit our school.

This is a fantastic scheme which allows our children to learn and engage with nature and wildlife all around. We are extremely fortunate that the children have the opportunity to spend time and play in such a beautiful woodland setting, which has an abundance of wildlife.

The children are thoroughly delighted with their Bronze Award and are now all inspired to take on the next challenges set for the Silver Award.

 

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