Welcome to the February Newsletter

We have thoroughly enjoyed this half-term.

It has been very busy and energising.

Amazing moments in the classroom.

Inspiring speakers igniting imaginations.

Founders’ Day contemplations.

Consideration Always in action.

What Matters discussions.

I have thoroughly enjoyed visiting classrooms and seeing dynamic learning taking place.

Chatting with students during break and lunchtimes is always a delight.

We have been celebrating effort and achievement through assemblies and individual meetings.

Every day offers so many opportunities to feel ever so proud of these amazing young people.

We are here for these dear souls.  They energise us.

We are here for the whole family too.

Thank you for being part of this community.

 

This newsletter reminds me again of this quotation:

I have found that if you love life, life will love you back.

Arthur Rubinstein

Wishing you all a lovely half term break.

Steven Jeffery
Headteacher


Founders’ Day 2022

Our Founders’ Day is celebrated every year on 20th January.

We started this year with an early morning get-together as a whole school community. Luckily it was a beautiful, sunny Worthing morning, albeit a rather chilly one!

Mr Jeffery reminded us of the history of the school and of our Founders, Theodore and Alphonse Ratisbonne. He also reminded the whole school of our ethos and the strength of the Sion community.

Our founders, Theodore and Alphonse Ratisbonne, believed  that we should all love each other with actions and words of kindness. They wanted us to have a love for the world…for people, animals and the planet. They believed that when we show authentic love, it is just like turning on the light when we find ourselves in complete darkness. When other people feel our love, it lights up their own heart and they then carry that light and pass it on to others through their own acts of kindness. Every day we should be mindful of our light and cultivate a beautiful flame. This flame carries kindness and love and throws light on all darkness.

This year’s theme was based on something that Theodore Ratisbonne said:

“I want you to have hearts bigger than the whole world. The heart expands in the flame of love and this flame must set other flames alight

We started a new tradition this year, sharing a Flame of Love around the school. Each year group had a candle to light to remind us all of this flame of love. Initially lit in Early Years, the flame traveled through the school. Year 6 carried it to the Senior School before Mr Jeffery spread it from classroom to classroom.

The students were also asked to write a ‘Message from My Heart to the World’ and to write their own Heart Haiku poems.

Year 5 enjoyed their Founders’ Day Beach School session. They also produced a beautiful Haiku book which they gave to Mr Jeffery.

 


Hot Lunches are GO!

We are delighted that our new hot lunch provision has started for both Junior and Senior students.  Welcome to the team from Worthing’s Plant Based School Kitchens!

All meals are freshly prepared and cooked in school with an exciting six-week menu available. There will be themed meals linked to curriculum projects and national
focus days, along with Friday ‘Fake-Aways’. The plant-based lunches are optional and children may still choose to bring in their own packed lunch if they wish – these can, of course, contain meat.

Our Founders’ Day was celebrated as a community with a picnic-style lunch being cooked by PBSK for the whole school – it was delicious!

The feedback has been very positive. “Just wanted to say my son is the biggest meat eater you could ever wish to meet. I managed to get him to agree to try the taster meal school offered. He reluctantly went.. I’m glad to report Jack loved the food and will be dinning on a regular basis.”

We were excited to have a visit from ITV Meridian who came along to find out more! We were so proud of our students who spoke so eloquently.

Here is a link to the ITV Meridian News story:

https://www.itv.com/news/meridian/2022-02-17/uks-first-plant-based-school-kitchen-as-pupils-react-to-a-meat-free-menu

Here is the 6-week menu starting after half term.

link to: PBSK 6 Week Menu 


Holocaust Memorial Day 

Every year, we mark Holocaust Memorial Day (27th January) with a variety of events across the school.

In HistFlix, the lunchtime history film club, students watched The Diary of Anne Frank.

Our Year 9 students, along with Year 10 History students, watched the Holocaust Memorial Day Trust live-streamed interview with Eva Clarke BEM, a Holocaust survivor. Eva was born in Mauthausen Concentration Camp, Austria, on 29th April 1945. She and her mother are the only survivors of their family, 15 members of whom were killed in Auschwitz-Birkenau: three of Eva’s grandparents, her father, uncles, aunts and her 7-year-old cousin, Peter. Year 9 attended the webcast to listen to her testimony as part of our Holocaust Memorial Day commemorations and as part of their learning about the rise of Nazism and dictatorships in Europe, the Second World War and the Holocaust.

On Thursday 27th January, assemblies were held in both the Junior School and the Senior School. In the Senior School, Mrs Yacoub reminded the students of the atrocities of the Holocaust and subsequent genocides around the world. Students were asked to light a candle at 8pm to remember all those who were murdered during these events. It was heartwarming to hear from some of those families who were moved to get involved.

In the Junior School, Years 4-6 attended an assembly of reflection. The children gathered together, lit a candle and shared readings and poetry from the Holocaust Memorial Day Trust.

 


Consideration Always in Action

Mr Jeffery is always filled with pride when he hears of acts of kindness and consideration by our students. This term he is delighted to have been updated on three of our students whose kindness can definitely be perceived as Consideration Always in Action!

Ethan in Year 4 has two piggy banks in which he collects money throughout the whole year and when he is given money from grandparents or does extra chores he divides the money into ‘spend’ and ‘charity’. Every December, he counts what he has collected in his charity money box along with what his sister, Anaya, has collected and they jointly make Christmas gift bags up filled with goodies for the children on the Bluebell ward in Worthing Hospital so that they get extra gifts as they are unwell and can’t be at home with their families.
Ethan and his sister have done this for several years now. Sadly last year due to COVID they were able to take anything into the wards so this year felt even more special. They weren’t able to visit the ward but a wonderful nurse called Hayley kindly took the gifts to the children.
 Mr Jeffery was also recently contacted by a member of the public who wanted to commend one of our students for her kindness to their father who had recently passed away. For many months, and pre-Covid, Kitty-Mae had seen an elderly gentleman on the bus which they both caught at the same time each morning. The two struck up conversations and Kitty Mae regularly gave up her seat on the bus. She also sent him beautiful hand-drawn cards which he treasured. On his death, his family wanted to pass on their thanks (and a lovely chocolate hamper) to Kitty-Mae as he often spoke of her kindness to him.
Scarlet in Year 7 has recently been in the news for using her talents to raise money for homeless young people.

Junior School Council Reps

Congratulations to our new Lower School JS School Council reps.  They were voted in by their peers and received their badges in Assembly.

Engineers in the making

Using resources supplied by the James Dyson Foundation, Year 10 GCSE DT students have been appreciating the engineering and design of a Dyson cleaner. They have been disassembling and then reassembling the parts, understanding how they fit together, and can easily be repaired and then dismantled for recycling at the end of its life.  Maybe they will be one of the 59,000 engineers that are needed in the future!
 

Junior School Science Fair

Flora and Lexie from the Senior School Medical Society visited the Junior School to talk about Science and careers in medicine. At lunchtime they kindly provided a hands-on Science Fair to ignite the younger children’s imaginations.


Swampy Drama

The Year 11 GCSE Drama group have written their devised drama piece about the 1990’s environmental protester, Swampy.

 


U 14 Netball Team

Huge congratulations to the U14 netball team who won the West Sussex South District netball tournament. There were 12 teams competing and Sion came out on top. Well done girls!


Reception go Wild

Reception have been learning about different animal groups. Having caught a strange visitor on the CCTV which they discovered, through research, was a crocodile, the children decided to build their own class crocodile so that it had a friend.

On a trip to Highdown Hill as part of their weekly Wild Curriculum days, the children created a crocodile out of natural materials. They were then invited to Highdown Garden Centre for hot chocolate (on the house) and were all given their own special plant!

The children have also been learning about fish and had a visit to Maidenhead Aquatics. They had a go at making their own Rainbow Fish cupcakes!

    


Pre-School Animal Antics

The pre-school children in Early Years have also been learning about animals. They have been doing some frog maths and have made their own Rainbow Fish.

For their Chinese New Year celebrations, the children had a go at using chopsticks and made some dumplings!


Year 8 Delta Christmas Hamper

Well done to Year 8 Delta who raised £140.65 for the Dogs Trust before Christmas  with George N winning the Christmas hamper. Mrs Freeman is so proud of her tutor group for organising this – it is for a charity very close to their hearts as their pets got them through lock down!

Valentines Day Cake Sale

Thank you to the Sixth Form students who organised a Valentines Day Charity Cake Sale – with a Bake-off competition thrown into the mix!  The amazing array of cakes went down a storm. There were even secret rose deliveries on offer….

  

And who were the recipients of these very special cards and homemade chocolate hearts? Made with love by Reception and pre-school children in Early Years.


Years 4 and 5 Endangered and Extinct Animals Topic

Years 4 and 5 have been learning about endangered and extinct animals and presented some super posters about their chosen animals to the rest of the classes. They all learned so much and realise how important it is to engage in looking after our world for the future.
   

Inter House Table Tennis Competitions

Well done to all the players who played in the Inter House Table Tennis competitions. Special congratulations to those who achieved top places!

 


Year 7 Travel Writers

Year 7 have been studying travel writing, including positive (and negative) reviews of Worthing! They have written some incredible, and hilarious, complaint letters about a fictional Hotel Casablanca and have also presented their own Sion Travel Show. Definitely some buddy TV stars in the making!


Year 4 Beach School

As we all know, the weather in Worthing isn’t always sunny, but Year 4 certainly seemed to have picked the perfect day for their Beach School session!


Year 6 Watercolours

Year 6 have been learning about watercolour painting: they have learned how to stretch the paper and to use watercolour paints. The children have really enjoyed watching the Channel 5 series, ‘Watercolour Challenge’, and have taken inspiration from our local area to explore the medium. For their Creative Prep, they have painted some pieces for submission to the Royal Academy of Art Summer Exhibition.

The Dutch Garden Greening Project

The Dutch Garden Greening Club have been hard at work this term and the space is being transformed, with planting, bird feeders and even a bug hotel!  If anyone has any plants they wish to donate to the area, Mrs Hoarty would love to hear from you!

These seats were made by Jess and Selina in their Year 10 GCSE DT lesson. They used upcycled tyres and covered a wooden base lined with foam with an old oilskin tablecloth. They are now proudly in their new home in the Dutch Garden, creating comfortable seating.

NSPCC Numbers Day

The Junior School enjoyed having a whole day focusing on numbers, helping to raise awareness and funds for the NSPCC.

Year 6 played a game asking questions to help work out fractions, time and measurements.

Year 1 wrote about their favourite numbers.

Year 2 used their numicon.

Raife in Year 4 shared his gift in Maths, explaining Pi and the Fibonacci sequence to the other year groups, showing his passion and understanding of the subject!


SionSoil

We want to develop green spaces across the whole school.

  • Herb gardens
  • Sensory gardens
  • Meditation gardens
  • Prayer gardens
  • Vegetable gardens
  • Gratitude gardens
  • Wild gardens
  • Butterfly gardens

We will develop these spaces through our What Matters (PSHEE) programmes and also through our SionSoil extra curricular clubs.

If any of our parents, grandparents or friends of our families have Green Fingers and gardening know-how and/or design, we would love to hear from you!

The first stage is to map out where we can create these spaces in the Junior School and the Senior School. Raised planters will be required along with plants and decorative items.

It will certainly be a marathon not a sprint. However, it is time to get our hands dirty.

If you can help us in any way or can support with plants and pots (not plastic) that would be truly wonderful. If you would like to volunteer to help the SionSoil project, please contact the Headteacher, Steven Jeffery. He would love to hear from you. Jefferys@sionschool.org.uk

We need to take care of the soul, as we take care of the soil. But we can only take care of the soul when we slow down. Take time for ourselves.

SionSoil is embracing this notion too.


Year 9 ‘Noughts and Crosses’

Year 9 have been studying Malorie Blackman’s ‘Noughts and Crosses’. After reading about inequality they formed their own political parties. The Liberty Party with Tallulah as Prime Minister promoted equal rights for all through education reform as did the other group, Everyone can sit on the Bench.

Year 7 & 8 Nutrition Challenge

Year 7 and 8 Food and Nutrition students were challenged to make a main meal suitable for the nutritional requirements of a teenager and following the Eatwell Guide.  Here are some of their creations!


Year 5 Hinduism

Year 5 are studying Hinduism. They asked themselves: “If God is in everything, how should we treat the World?”.  This is their artistic response, showing that we would be happy, and animals and plants would be treated kindly.

Year 5 have also been learning about Plant Lifecycles and visited Victoria Park to identify trees.


Junior School Chess club is thriving

Lovely to see Year 11 Harry helping out and sharing his passion for chess with the younger children.


ISA Poetry Competition

Congratulations to Year 11 student Flora who is one of the five finalists of the ISA Poetry Competition in the Senior category going through to be judged by Steven Camden, author of ‘My Big Mouth’. We have our fingers crossed for you!


Kindness Assembly

Mrs Walton’s Wednesday Wisdom Assembly reflected on kindness. Our Anti Bullying trained Playground Pals then performed a play to demonstrate their role to promote kindness in our community.


Year 10 Blood Brothers

The Year 10 GCSE Drama group are currently studying Blood Brothers.


From the Senior School Art Room

Year 9 Layered prints inspired by Hundertwasser
Year 10 GCSE Soap Sculptures
Year 10 GCSE Sketchbooks – Natural Forms
Year 13 Fine Art A Level
Art Club Mural for the Music School

Year 4 Assembly

An outstanding Assembly by the children of Year 4.  Hugely impressive knowledge, expertly shared, on both the Arctic and Antarctic  – with a little help from a team of scientists, a Penguin and Polar Bear!

As part of the same topic, Year 4 have painted these wonderful pictures, fantastic examples of colour mixing.

There have also been these fantastic examples of creative prep.


Year 7 Drama

Year 7 have enacted a canteen scene from “The Demon Headmaster” by Gillian Cross.

 


Visiting Speaker

Continuing our series of careers talks, it was lovely to welcome our speaker from Flying Time Aviation to talk about a careers as a pilot and working in aviation.

If anyone would like to volunteer to come and speak to our students about their career, Miss Haworth, Leader of Sixth Form and Careers, would love to hear from you. haworthe@sionschool.org.uk


A huge “thank you” to all those who made the Christmas Bubble Fair such an enormous success!  It was a brilliant team effort from Father Christmas, the children, the Little SFA, SFA and staff, not to mention parents who supported so brilliantly, and together we made this a fantastic festive fundraising event.   Well done everyone!

We will shortly begin organising this year’s Year 6 Leavers hoodies, so do look out for a letter coming home to all Year 6 parents soon.

We are determined to keep the fun coming during the rest of this school year. Look out for announcements about fun events coming soon!

In the meantime, don’t forget to make use of our hugely successful second-hand uniform “shop” run by Miss Thompson.  Please do keep your donations of clean uniform coming in to help us stock the shop, and we can continue to make this a great success!

This year we are looking for new SFA members – our meetings are now held by video call, and with less “whole school” events planned, there’s never been a better time to get involved without the usual time commitment. We’d love to welcome new members with fresh ideas and skills, so do let Mrs Pearson or Miss Thompson know if you would be interested in joining us, or alternatively contact us directly via the School Office:-

Kate Lambie


Aladdin at the Windmill Theatre, Littlehampton

Miss Liu and Mrs Freeman very much enjoyed watching Italia (Year 5) and Giselle (Year 10), along with singing teacher Mrs Ball, perform in the pantomime Aladdin at the Windmill Theatre, Littlehampton.

 


Girls Rugby

Amber, Milo and Phoebe play for the U13 girls team at Worthing Rugby Club. The trio have all played for the ‘Sea Eagles’ since they were 4 and Amber is the team’s captain.  This season they have played and won 4 league matches, scoring 58 trys and conceded only 5! Recently they won 120-0 against Lewes in a Sunday League match – Amber scored three trys and Phoebe one.

We also have a number of other girls playing for Worthing Rugby Club – Jessica and Skye play for the U15 team and Abi plays for the U18.  It is great to see so many of our students getting involved!


St John Ambulance Award

Congratulations to Erin who has been awarded her Grand Prior’s award at St John Ambulance. This is the highest award that a cadet can achieve. Pictured with Erin are the High Sheriff of West Sussex and the County President of St John Ambulance.


Cheerleading success

Well done to Zoe who competes with the Zodiac Allstars Cheerleading Team.  Her squad, Peach, recently came 1st place in their competition – Zoe’s first competition!

 


Jessica – Most Improved Player

Well done to Year 10 Jessica who was named by Sussex Tennis as the most improved Junior Girl!


Muddy Stilettos – What to do in Half Term

For those of you who may be making plans for half term, here is a link to the Muddy Stilettos suggestions of places to go!

18 ideas to save half term in Sussex!