From the Headmaster's Desk

One of the many great things about working in a school is the variety each day brings. One minute, I might be chairing a meeting about Lyonsdown’s social media presence, the next I am reading the Reception children a story about a naughty monkey. For the avoidance of doubt, this really did happen this afternoon.

And it is variety that encourages the Lyonsdown boys and girls to be curious about the opportunities around them: whilst Year 5 are adventuring at a PGL Centre, Year 6 are writing essays for an ISA competition. As one class is studying fractions, another might be rehearsing their Shakespearian monologues. In Mrs Robert’s Music assembly on Thursday, the performances ranged from tap dance, through jazz piano to a  guitar solo of “Yellow Submarine.” Imagine.

With variety in mind, on Monday I moved from debating the latest news on the gate with Year 6 (a reminder: all boys and girls should be engaging with current affairs every day) to leading an assembly about St. Valentine’s Day. We discussed why it is important to love our family, friends, animals and so on, and then tackled a difficult riddle. If one person can love another “to the moon and back” and also “as much as all the tea in China,” which is the greater amount of love? After much discussion, debate and guesstimating, the children discovered that travelling to the moon and back would be a 477,800 mile round trip. In comparison, in 2014 China produced 2,095,700 metric tonnes of tea, with an estimated value of $4.1 billion. I think there is a definite answer to this question, but will let your son or daughter discuss the problem with you.

The fact that this week marked the centenary of women being granted the vote for the first time shows how far the UK has come since 1918. But progress is never satisfied, nor should it be: as we look forward to the next one hundred years, Safer Internet Day told us to “Create, Connect and Share Respect.” It is clear that our boys and girls will have the chance to lead this change across a huge variety of sectors. By providing them with opportunities to explore a broad range of experiences now, at Lyonsdown, we prepare them for the future.

I wish all of our boys and girls, and those parents who are fortunate enough to share it, a very good half-term.

C. Hammond