What an impressively busy two weeks! As Christmas draws nearer, our school calendar becomes increasingly hectic. Here’s a look back at the festive couple of weeks we’ve enjoyed.
The Religious Studies Department and prayer group held two wonderful assemblies on the meaning of advent and lit the first candle on the advent wreath.
As always, year 7 girls decorated the Christmas tree in the front hall alongside their sixth-form mentors. It looks absolutely beautiful.
It was wonderful seeing so many of you at our annual Christmas Fayre last Saturday. We are particularly grateful to parents for their support and generous donations and a big thank you to the More House Parents’ Association for organizing such a successful event. The MHPA stalls raised £5,000 and the girls’ stalls raised £620.
Christmas Jumper Day
This week, form 10LM held a Christmas jumper day to raise money for Shelter from the Storm. They raised £173, which will help provide emergency night shelters including beds, dinner, and breakfast to homeless people every night in London.
This coincided with our Christmas lunch – it was wonderful seeing girls and staff alike looking so resplendently festive!
The More House rowers had to step in for a last-minute fixture against Lady Margaret School at Fulham Reach Boat Club, following a cancellation from Cardinal Vaughan’s team. They were happy to oblige.
For once, the weather was ideal and as always, all crews enjoyed good races and displayed good sportsmanship. The races took place on the flood tide in the dark, with lights on all boats. Although there were quite strong winds, all of the crews competently handled this challenge. The teams raced from the red buoy at Crabtree to the FRBC pontoon, approximately 750m.
The More House teams won three out of four races and lost one race by one length only.
Lady Margaret won by 1 length
More House won by 2.5 lengths
More House won by 0.5 lengths
More House won by 1.5 lengths
Well done to Eleanor in year 9 who has been competing in an international fencing tournament in Thessaloniki, Greece – she came 7th out of 48 competitors, a truly impressive result.
More House Elite
Last week, the More House Elite girls enjoyed a lunchtime tutorial with Mrs Dakoda, the dance instructor. Sports Captain, Flora, reports:
“It was a fun and informative session. Mrs Dakoda taught us that working on flexibility will reduce our chances of injury as we will have an improved range of motion. This, in turn, decreases resistance from your muscles. Strength and stretching are connected and when combined ensure you give your best performance.
Although some of us were more flexible than others – especially Issy who impressed us all with her skills! – we all learned a good deal from the lesson. Many thanks to Mrs Dakoda for sparing her time to pass on her excellent moves and to Miss Minto for organizing such an educational class. We are all much more focused on our flexibility as a result.”
Another treat for the More House elite – a lunchtime seminar from Ed Clarke from Pro-Sports Physio in Kensington.
The session began with a discussion on what the students thought injury prevention really means. They stressed how important it is to warm up properly before taking part in physical activity and that performing stretches and certain exercises (such as one-legged squats, calf raises, and balance exercises) before play, injuries can be prevented.
According to Ed, the most common areas of pain in young people are heels, knees, and elbows. This is mainly caused by the fact that muscles don’t grow at the same rate as bones. He stressed that if you are injured, you shouldn’t play on it as you risk making it worse, however exercises could be managed to ensure participation.
Finally, he concluded by explaining how you can become a physiotherapist – you need to study sciences at A level and a degree course in physiotherapy. He supplied us with the contact details for his surgery if anyone needs to be referred to a physiotherapist in the future.
On Friday 30th November, Miss Minto took her year 8 netballers to the Copperbox in the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park to sample a day in the life of an England netballer.
First stop was a behind-the-scenes tour. The England team were enjoying their downtime before the game got underway and they’d left the changing rooms free for us to have a snoop around. We got to see the ice baths players use after the game and how they’d decorated the room. Each player had their own space on the bench and they each had a festive stocking, filled with fun surprises and snacks.
Our tour guide talked about surface training (where the players train in the morning to get used to the court, lights, and LED advertising boards), player superstitions (did you know that the team all have to sit in the same place on the team bus?), and the anti-doping process that three players from each team have to undergo at the end of each game. Finally, we learned about the pre-match routine, where some members of the England team like to juggle netballs!
Next stop: the Q & A session. England Captain Ama Agbeze and England player Ella Clarke were on hand to answer a flurry of questions from the More House girls. Some questions:
Maysie: “What are the most common netball injuries?”
Answer: Sprained ankles and ACL knee injuries.
Lucy: “Do you like the ice baths?”
Amelia: “What are some of your team superstitions?
Answer: Tapes her right ankle before the left one.
Lucy: “How many people are in the England squad?”
Answer: 21, 12 on match day.
Julia: “What positions do you play?”
Answer: GA and GK.
We then went to an umpiring masterclass with chief umpire Gary Burgess. He talked us through the art of being a neutral umpire and how he actually wanted to be an ice cream van man originally. He has umpired over 93 international matches, two World Cup finals, and two Commonwealth finals. We learned some of the hand signals that umpires use and he challenged us to try and spot them in the game.
Finally, we went to a coaching session with Jodie and Louise (two England coaches). We mixed with students from another school and played “Space Invades” and “Tutti Frutti Netball Shooting”. The other school won the former but thanks to some top-notch shooting from the More House girls, we dominated the latter.
The evening concluded with an opportunity to watch the professionals. Fresh from the glory of winning Commonwealth Gold, the team were looking sprightly and ready for a tough match. We were very impressed with the agility, power, and speed of the netballers and were thrilled to acquire some autographs from many of the England internationals after the game. England won the match 65:53!
Art for Youth
Congratulations to Issy in year 7, who will be exhibiting three of her wonderful paintings in the Art for Youth exhibition at the Mall Galleries next week. She is one of five youth ambassadors taking part, alongside 130 adult artists, raising funds for UK Youth.
We will round off our festivities with the annual Christmas Concert, taking place next Thursday at Christchurch off Flood Street. Please arrive before 7:15 PM and enjoy some mulled wine and mince pies before the concert gets underway!
Mr Keeley & Mrs Leach