Welcome to this Christmas edition of our Newsletter

Dear Families

It has been a really exciting and impressive term.

So much has happened in the classroom and beyond.

There is so much light and energy seen in this news.

I can plainly see the spinning energy which is emerging out of new learning, the excitement of discovery and the joy of newly found knowledge.

School is exhilarating.

It should be and it must be.

When I read these pages and see the images and clips, there is evidence of delight.

School should be delightful.

Education should not be experienced passively – something that is done to us.

Education is a tremendous journey of unearthing.

The teacher opens the map and guides the traveller.

There are many moments of celebration along the way.

The individual child responds with a distinct response.

This is the launch of original thinking – the Sapere Aude, Incipe

Dare to think for yourself – begin!

As we learn about the past, the present and this planet we call home, our reactions, responses and questions matter.

This is when the experience of education enthuses, inspires and creates.

As I read through this newsletter, I was delighted to see the enthusiasm, inspired faces and creative responses to what has been learned.

This world needs creative thinkers.

The journey starts here – and every single lesson matters.

Steven Jeffery


The Big Little Nativity by Years 1 – 3

Christmas Song by Years 4 – 6

Early Years Nativity

The Senior School Virtual Carol Service

A – Zen of Life

Reverse Advent

Once again your generosity has blown me away.  It seems I keep asking you to donate and give, and you continue to do so.  I know, that because of your kindness, there are going to be many local families that will be blessed and can have a Christmas they didn’t think would be possible.

Thank you, thank you, thank you.

Ms Ghinn, Mission Director

Christmas Lunch in the Junior School 

The children in the Junior School were treated to a Christmas Lunch courtesy of the Plant Based School Kitchen who will be starting to provide optional hot lunches every day in the New Year.

The children loved the food – lots of clean plates and requests for seconds!

Acts of Kindness

Mr Jeffery was delighted to receive a letter from a member of the public praising the kindness of one of our students. It transpires that Kitty-Mae caught the bus at the same time every day (pre-Covid) with an elderly gentleman, and over time, as she often gave up her seat for him, they struck up conversation. These acts of kindness made a huge difference in this gentleman’s life and he often spoke of Kitty-Mae. When he died recently, the family found a handmade card from Kitty-Mae and contacted Mr Jeffery to pass on their thanks (along with a chocolate hamper) for her kindness.

Sound and Vision

The Senior School were delighted to welcome back our Sound and Vision production.  Students from Years 7 – 10 sang, performed and danced to an audience who very much appreciated their talents! It was lovely to see so many parents in attendance. Mrs Freeman summed up the evening as ‘a storage tank full of talented students!’


Children in Need

Throughout the school, the students raised money for Children in Need with a mufti day. In the Senior School, the Sixth Form organised a Bake Off competition with a Cake Sale which saw over £300 raised – Congratulations to Zoe, Jack and Erin who were deemed worthy Bake Off winners!

Decorations Day in the Junior School

Year 5 created these Selfie Elfies!


What Matters?

It is important that all the students know they have a voice and that they will be heard.  We have introduced a What Matters link on the Learning Platform for any student to use when they wish to raise a concern, query or issue.  Here is a link to Mr Jeffery’s assembly to the Senior School.

UK Parliament Week

Once again this year, the Junior School took part in UK Parliament Week and the children spent time during the week focusing on different aspects of the parliamentary process, democracy and ‘Our Values’. We were delighted to welcome Sir Peter Bottomley to start the week with an excellent assembly.
Year 4 discussed the COP26 summit. Working in groups, the children came up with a series of laws that could help our environment. These included;
· Immediate ban on all petrol cars
· Every home to be given solar panels
· Immediate ban on crisp packet
· Taking plastic of any kind onto a beach to be made illegal
The children decided four advantages and four disadvantages about their law and later in the week, they will vote on whether the laws should be passed.
It sparked a good deal of interesting debate and Year 4 have taken a vote on the environmental issues that concern them. They have made this video for you.
On the last day of UKPW, the Junior School School Council were joined by pupils from Year 9 to enjoy a ‘DemocaTEA’ to mark the closing of this year’s celebration of democracy. The children discussed: what freedom meant to them, what happens if it is taken away, are rules & structure needed & how do we ensure everyone enjoys freedom?
Learning about democracy and Parliament are very important elements of our curriculum and Mrs Pearson herself is a UK Parliament Teacher Ambassador.

Courtyard Design Creative Competition

Well done to the Upper and Lower School winners and the runner up of the Autumn Creative Competition which was judged by the JS School Council.


Medical Mavericks

The Medical Mavericks ran a Careers in Health workshop for students in Years 7 – 10 along with those in Year 11 and the Sixth Form who were interested in a medical career. This was a hands-on experience where the students were able to have a go at many different medical techniques, such as recording an ECG, trying keyhole surgery, seeing inside their bodies with an ultrasound machine and taking pictures of the inside of their eyes. Every activity was linked to appropriate medical careers, with information on how to get into them and what qualifications and grades are needed.

Harriet (Year 8) said: “The Medical Mavericks did an amazing job in entertaining, teaching, and exciting us! We all had a great time, the drunk glasses were definitely the best though! Everyone learnt facts and tested things out like measuring our blood pressure. The whole class was engaged throughout the lesson and all the activities were really fun. We definitely want them back, and are glad they came.”

Jessica (Year 9) said: “What I enjoyed: I enjoyed the drunk glasses; the stitches – I can do stitches!; I also found out that I cannot do surgery and that I am still growing. To be honest, the entire thing was fun and I had a lot of fun finding out and trying different things.”

Mr Heyward

Year 10 Gingerbread Houses

Year 10 Food and Nutrition students have been busy assembling and decorating gingerbread houses in order to enter the Safe in Sussex competition.  Watch this space for further news on their progress……..

Junior School Christmas visit to the Dome

Thanks to the generosity of the SFA, all classes from Reception to Year 6 enjoyed a special Christmas treat with a trip to the Dome Cinema.  The children loved the film ‘Encanto’ – and rather enjoyed their popcorn too!

Year 7 Poetry

Year 7 had a lively, production English lesson where they were engaged in an exploratory active reading poetry lesson. The words and phrases from the poem were posted around the room and, working in teams, envoys were dispatched to find them, remember them and bring them back to the scribe. Students were given the structure of the poem and then worked in their groups to fit the poem together!

Year 3 Diwali Lamps

Year 3 enjoyed making some lamps for Diwali in their Art lesson and created some modern Rangoli patterns in small groups using unusual materials.

Year 10 and Year 11 Workshops

As part of their PHSE programme, both Years 10 and 11 took part in workshops about “Alcohol and Decision Making”.

Sixth Form Christmas Lunch

The Sixth Form enjoyed a Christmas lunch together, organised by Charlotte and Zoe.

Merry Christmas from ViSion.

Miss Haworth

From the Senior School Art Studio

Year 8 Poly printing Year 8 have been responding to the artist Micheal Craig-Martin by engraving a printing their original tiles.

Abstract mini sculptures  – created in Art club every Thursday lunchtime by Year 7 and 8 artists

Year 10 Natural Forms inspired artwork  – using a range of media and techniques including low relief and  pen and wash



Year 6 Penpal Christmas Cards

Year 6 were delighted to receive Christmas cards from their French penpals from St Pierre du Rondeau in Grenoble which is the primary school of one of the Sion schools (Notre Dame de Sion, Grenoble). The children have also written cards and letters which have been posted to their penpals.

The Year 9 French students have written letters to students in another Sion school in France, this time in Strasbourg.

SPA Senior School Fair

Thank you to the SPA who have done so much for the Senior School this term, including sponsoring four of the practice rooms in the new Music Centre and providing all of Year 7 with books from BookBuzz.

A huge thank you to all the hard-working team who came began setting up the Christmas Fair on Thursday evening before running a fantastic event on Friday. It was run a little differently this year with all year groups taking turns to visit the Fair but everyone had a great time and it was the perfect way to end the term.

SFA Junior School Fair

Thank you to the SFA and the Little SFA for a brilliant ‘Bubble’ Christmas Fair. With games, a visit from Father Christmas and gifts, the children all had an amazing time!

The winner of the Christmas Bake Off is Clara in Year 1 and Iris, Year 5, will be Assistant Head, Head of the Junior School, for one day next term.

A huge thank you, too, to the team who make up the SFA. They support so many activities in the Junior School, such as the Bubble Fair, but also buying new equipment for the benefit of the children.  This term, the Junior School took delivery of some new playground cricket equipment which will definitely be put to good use!

Message from Year 1

Year 1 are getting very excited or Christmas. We have now completed our nativity which the children worked so hard for, remembering and delivering their lines beautifully. We have made snowmen decorations to adorn family Christmas trees for years to come (hopefully!).
At the start of half-term, we visited the Arundel Wetlands Centre with Year 2, where we pond-dipped and found out about the migration of birds.
In class, we continued our topic of seas and oceans and completed this by designing a ‘keep our oceans and seas clean’ poster. In Maths, we learnt about coin value, shapes and our two times tables. In English, we learnt about rhyming words and recited famous nursery rhymes. Many of the children have made great strides in their reading this term, moving up stages of the reading ladder. Thank you for your hard work, dedication and enthusiasm Year 1.
We hope you all have a wonderful Christmas. Mr Staggs & Year 1

Junior School House Points

Well done to all the children who have amassed a huge amount of house points this term!  The final results are:

Highdown – 5014

Cissbury – 4970

Kithurst – 4811

Chanctonbury – 4305

Careers Visitor

We were delighted to welcome Sion Alumni, Sophie Burgess, who visited us as part of our Careers, ‘A discussion with….’, series.
She gave our students valuable insight into studying law and becoming a solicitor. It was a fantastic opportunity for those students who are interested in law and they asked some brilliant questions!
It is always lovely to see what our students have gone on to do once they have left Sion – if anyone else would like to visit and speak to our students about their careers, we would be delighted to welcome you! Please contact the Leader of Careers, Miss Haworth, harworthe@sionschool.org.uk.

Sixth Form visitors

With the aim of preparing the Sixth Form students for life away from Sion, Miss Haworth has arranged for a range of visitors to come and speak to the students. So far these have included recent alumni, careers talks, a visitor from HSBC and being taught how to sew on a button! There is more planned for next term (including some car mechanics!)

Pantomime Season

Year 8 got into the Christmas spirit as they performed Cinderella (the pantomime) during their drama lessons.

Year 7 visit to Shakespeare’s Globe Theatre

The students had a fascinating visit to the Globe in London for a day of theatre and workshops.

Year 2 inspired by Florence Nightingale

Year 2, with the help of parent and nurse Mrs Semple,  had a go at some First Aid as part of their Florence Nightingale project.

Year 3 go back to the Stone Age

Year 3 have been learning about the Stone Age and to support this had a Stone Age day. The children immersed themselves in a stone-age mentality and enjoyed dressing up, making their own salt dough bone necklaces, soap knapping and they also tried some traditional nettle tea!

Years 10 and 11 Jekyll and Hyde Perfomance

Years 10 and 11 thoroughly enjoyed the interactive performance of Jekyll and Hyde with Box Clever Theatre – some of our budding thespians took to the floor and helped the actors to tell Stevenson’s famous story of the ‘primitive duality of mankind’.

Good News for Everyone

Year 7 welcomed John Kennard, a volunteer from Good News for Everyone (formally the Gideons) for a special assembly which was based on three motivational words: Perseverance, Respect, Kindness.
Perseverance – this is needed to achieve. Skill takes perseverance.
Respect. For parents, authority, others views, the colour of someone’ skin. This can be difficult if we’re impatient. We need to master this quality. Respect breeds respect.
Kindness. Everyone needs to work on this. It’s like medicine. This reflects back to our motto, Consideration Always, which helps develop a compassionate person.
John asked all of the students to try their very best to practice these. He also gave examples of how Jesus himself lived by perseverance, respect and kindness. and gave any student who wished to take it a gift of the New Testament, Psalms and Proverbs .

Year 6 Building Bridges

Year 6 are studying bridge building and have looked at suspension bridges, learning about tension and compression forces on cables and pillars. Mrs Stevens used a car to test the bridge structures – some were more successful than others but much was learnt from failure as well as success! Well done to the winning team.

Year 11 Swampy Protest Drama

Growth Mindset

We speak a lot about Growth Mindset at Sion and, recently, Ms Ghinn held an assembly reminding the students of the importance of cultivating a positive, Growth Mindset. It was a great reminder to focus attention on effort and a “can do” attitude, recognising that any failure along the road to success is an opportunity to review, reflect and re-energise. It’s all part of learning. We’ve got this!

“If parents (and teachers)want to give their children a gift, the best thing they can do is to teach their children to love challenges, be intrigued by mistakes, enjoy effort, and keep on learning. That way, their children don’t have to be slaves of praise. They will have a lifelong way to build and repair their own confidence.” Carol S. Dweck
“Success is the ability to go from one failure to another with no loss of enthusiasm.” Winston Churchill
“We like to think of our champions and idols as superheroes who were born different from us. We don’t like to think of them as relatively ordinary people who made themselves extraordinary.” Carol S. Dweck

BSGA Regional Trampolining Competition

Congratulations to Ava who represented the school competing in a Regional Trampolining Competition (governed by the BSGA, the British Schools Gymnastics Association).
This was Ava’s first competition and, despite her nerves, she did really well and earned herself 4th place and qualification to the next round.

ISA National Swim Gala

Huge congratulations to our swim team who qualified for the ISA National Swim Gala which was held at the London Aquatic Centre in the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park on Sunday.
The team was made up of:
Daisy (Year 7) in the 50m Breaststroke.
Viona (Year 8 in the 50 m Breaststroke and the 50m Backstroke.
Oliver (Year 8 in the 50m fly and 50m freestyle.
Ella (Year 11) in the 100m breaststroke and 50m fly.
The whole team swam brilliantly and it was a great experience for all the swimmers competing in front of hundreds of spectators.
A special mention to Ollie and Ella who both received Bronze Medals, both in the 50m Butterfly. The presentation was by GB Volleyball player Peter Bakare.

Year 6 River Walk

“It was a great pleasure and honour supporting  on the River Walk and working with you, Kaye Balchin and other parents today. It was very educative and amazing to see the wealth of knowledge the children have about rivers.
I must commend the exceptional behaviour of the children and the fantastic teachings you have given them, as they were able to explain what  they have learnt about the river  in class and relate it to reality. “

Year 10 Lord of the Flies

Year 10 are studying Lord of the Flies and were asked to ‘illustrate’ the island.

Cookery Club

Lots of new clubs have started in the Senior School this term including: HistFlix, Cookery Club,

Kind Word Chalks

At Sion, we regularly discuss What Matters with all children. One of the Year 5 pupils presented the wonderful idea of ‘Kind word chalks’ to Mrs Pearson. Our AntiBullyingPro-trained Playground Pals put them to good use with the school community. What Matters? This Matters!
We are grateful that we have a school culture which encourages young people to share with staff. Relationships are strong and our care is authentic. However, it would be foolish to think that every young person feels confident enough to speak up when things aren’t as they should be. The What Matters Button on the learning platform will help with this. We understand that anonymity is necessary to capture some messages. Although that means we cannot help that child directly, it does mean that we can address any cultural issues which are concerning that child.

Under 15 West Sussex South Basketball Tournament

Congratulations to the Under 15 basketball Team who came runners-up in the West Sussex South Tournament. The team were undefeated in the whole tournament and missed out on victory by just one basket. During the tournament, the team won 4 matches and drew 2 matches. The team were Archie, James, Ollie, Freddie and Jasper.

Year 7 also competed in a mini Sion tournament – maybe champions for the future?

Year 11 Physics

Year 11 Physics students have been studying Centre of Gravity & Stability……which finished with a Jenga competition to put their knowledge into action. After a series of elimination rounds, a very tense final saw Phoebe victorious over Flora.

Year 7 Pop Up Museum

Following their visit to Worthing Museum earlier in the term, Year 7 set up their own pop-up museum with the artefacts that they have been loaned. They were delighted to welcome some of the Junior School to their Museum!

Art Club artwork

The Senior School Art Club have made this collaborative Miro-inspired artwork.

In the Junior School, the Art Club have been looking at Kandinsky’s paintings and Maya has painted and use collage to create her own painting in the style of Kandinsky’s painting, Composition VIII

The Great Knit – an update

You may remember that last term the Charity Knitting Club were busy knitting Innocent Smoothie hats, raising awareness for Age Concern.  (They also knitted pouches for kangaroos injured in Australia’s fires.)  They were delighted to receive a thank you in recognition of their support.

Mayumi’s Renewable Energy Presentation

Year 4 have been learning about renewable energy. Mayumi gave this outstanding presentation to the class.

Year 6’s Senior School Taster Day

Year 6 spent the day in the Senior School, getting an insight into what Year 7 is all about.

Year 7 create a Human Feudal System

Year 7 have been learning about the feudal system as part of their unit on the impact of the Norman conquest.  The students created a human feudal system based on diagrams of the political-social hierarchy – the knights took their role very seriously!

Year 2 visit to Arundel Wetlands

Year 2 had a wonderful day at the Wetlands in Arundel for their topic on Habitats. Lots of pond dipping and learning opportunities!


Belle – selected for the South East Regional Gymnastics Squad

Belle, in Year 7,  competed in the Women’s Artistic Classic Championship National Final and came 40th AA out of 80 gymnasts. This means she is ranked 40th in the country which is a fantastic result – particularly as the age range of the gymnasts was from 11- 20 years! The South East Gymnastics squad came 5th out of 14 regions, although there was only  1 and a half points difference between 3rd and 5th.  Belle has now been selected for the South East regional squad 2022.

Santa Dash

Well done to Mrs Summers, Mrs Kirk, Mrs Stevens, Mrs Balchin and Mrs Pyne, along with Selina and Matilda, who all completed the Santa Dash along the seafront.

Oliver’s Silver Gymnastics Medal 

Huge congratulations to Oliver in Year 4 for winning a Silver Medal in the South Eastern Region Gymnastics Competition at Guildford Spectrum.

Life Saving Distinction Medal

Congratulations to Olivia  who has received her Life Saving Distinction Medal and Certificate from the Littlehampton Town Mayor, Cllr Michelle Molloy. Olivia recently also went to Worcester Cathedral to be presented with the Royal Life Saving Society’s Certificate of Merit at their 2021 National Honours Award Ceremony.

The next Lewis Hamilton?

Dejaun has enjoyed further success in his Karting… during half term he came first in a local Karting Junior Development meet and more recently he came first in the Fangio Cadet Championship – he was the Round 9 winner for 2021.

Gold Judo Medals for Phoebe

Congratulations to Phoebe who has won two gold medals at a competition held at Storrington Judo Club.

Cheerleading at Winter Wonderland

Well done to Devyani in Year 4 who was competing in Cheerleading at Winter Wonderland and performed brilliantly.

Lauren awarded Sailing Trophy

In August Lauren passed her Royal Yachting Association Level 2 Power Boat handling. She then took and passed the RYA Dingy Instructor qualification and spent the rest of the summer teaching at AYAC in Littlehampton, where she is a member.

At this years AYAC AGM, she was awarded the Russell Moore Trophy that is occasionally awarded to a young member that has performed exceptionally well and contributed to the club during the year.

Well done, Lauren.

Ciara’s Amazing Weekend of Dance

Ciara had a very successful weekend when she recently competed at a Freestyle Dance Festival.

On Friday night, she won her solo dance. On Saturday, she won her slow dance and became a premiership dancer.  On Sunday, she won her solo dance again and became a premiership dancer and then on Sunday night,  she danced in supreme dancer and won that too! Congratulations Ciara!


Saturday Art

Ethan (Year 6)attends a Saturday Art Class and has produced this lovely painting for which he was awarded Star of the Week by Mrs Bassett.

Sion Alumni News

We were delighted to hear that one of our Sion Alumni, Sahil Ahmad,  has recently won an award at the Asian Curry Awards. To be presented such an award at the age of 17 is a massive achievement and we are all very proud of Sahil!


You have reached the end of this Christmas Newsletter.  Wishing everyone a very Happy Christmas and looking forward to seeing all the students in 2022.