Little Alleynian 2023

Alleynian The Little

Issue 6, 2023

We give them a big whoosh on their way…… Sally Donaldson will be leaving DUCKS after leading the Kindergarten for 17 years. We wish Sally all the very best and thank her for all she has done to ensure the Kindergarten provides the best possible start for our youngest children. Trish Zammit after 20 years at DUCKS, (currently a Moorhen Class teacher) has decided the time has come to spend more quality time with her grandchildren but we know she will remain in close touch. Charlotte Godfree (currently Curlew Class teacher) will be relocating with her family to Kent after what she describes as "9 very happy years" at DUCKS. Following 7 years at Dulwich College, Gill Benest (Head of Learning Support Transition) will be relocating to Northamptonshire with her family. Natalie Nakkas (currently teaching Kingfisher Class) will return to her teaching roots in the state sector and we look forward to building professional development connections between the two schools. Nicola Ferris (currently Teaching Assistant in Teal Class) will be returning to a previous career in therapeutic counselling, working as a school counsellor and supporting young people in local primary schools and at the BRIT Performing Arts School. Katherine Jarrett (currently part-time Teaching Assistant in Swan Class) has decided to spend more time focusing on her family but has promised to stay in touch with the DUCKS community. Daniyah Choudhury (current Gap Year student) will be leaving to study Pharmacy at University and we wish her all the best. We wish a fond farewell to all our DUCKS leavers, both staff and pupils, and look forward to some special leaving events at the end of this term. We would like to send special thanks to those members of DUCKS staff who will be leaving at the end of the summer term and moving on to new adventures.

It is my great pleasure to share with you the sixth edition of Little Alleynian My first year as Head of DUCKS has been hugely rewarding and I feel enormously proud of the many special events within the DUCKS community. It has been a joy to welcome parents back into the building for occasions such as Parent & Carer Week, ’Stay & Learn’ activities, sporting competitions and Forest School sessions. The children have also returned to their normal routines and it has been a pleasure to see them mixing within year groups during assemblies, special performances, breakfast, lunch and playtime. As is evident throughout this publication, our termly Creative Curriculum themes have been a great success. We started with ‘Our Planet’ followed by ‘Long Long Ago’ and finishing with ‘Invention & Innovation’. Our DUCKS parents brought a wealth of ‘awe and ‘wonder’ to our children’s learning by sharing their many talents and skills. Throughout the year parents have performed class cooking, celebrated festivals with the children and given talks and presentations. We were delighted that two of our architect parents offered to lead a special Free Learning day, when all classes collaborated to build an environmentally friendly DUCKS Town. At the Edward Alleyn Theatre our Year 2 children treated us to a very special performance of the musical Hansel and Gretel. Although they move on to join new schools, they will always be DUCKS children and we look forward to them returning to visit, like our current DUCKS Prefect who began life in the Kindergarten 17 years ago! This year we have enjoyed supporting a wonderful local charity, ‘ReadEasy Southwark’, and have successfully raised £5,572. We also finished the year by adopting a whale through the ‘Happywhale’ charity The end of the year culminated in the return of the DUCKS summer fair, a wonderful event which highlights the coming together of this very special DUCKS community.

Jo Parker Head of DUCKS

Wellbeing A day in the life at DUCKS The wellbeing of our children and parents is considered at every step of the way at DUCKS Kindergarten and Infants’ School.

10. Sleep Time Rest is so important for healthy bodies and minds and many of our youngest children need their naps. In the Kindergarten, they go to rest in the sleep room; in the Nursery, they head to the cosy corner if they feel tired.

12. Golden Rules At DUCKS, we follow six golden rules to keep our school a happy place: we are gentle, we are kind, we are honest, we listen, we look after property, we work hard.


Role Models As part of their Community Service Programme, older College boys visit DUCKS to referee football matches, help in classrooms and read to children. When asked what he wanted to be when he grew up, one of our three-years-olds answered, “A College boy like Brodie!”



2. Settling In Saying goodbye at the start of the school day can be a difficult time for our youngest children. A friendly welcome from staff and children alongside enticing, interesting and varied classroom activities can make it easier. The morning routine helps, too. Adults quickly learn the best ways to make each individual child feel welcome.

11. Circle Time A chance for everyone to have their say, speak aloud in front of their peers and take turns, circle time is an excellent way to discuss the issues that are on our children’s minds. It may be that we need to discuss events in the playground, the news or ideas that feature in our termly Wellbeing or RE topics. Everyone has a voice, and everyone’s contribution is valued.



1. Breakfast Club Children who come to school early for breakfast are welcomed by friendly faces and given the opportunity to enjoy a sociable meal with friends. Children are encouraged to choose for themselves, help themselves to their own breakfast and help each other, too. 4. Orchard In the orchard, children have the chance to enjoy nature in all weathers. Activities are child-initiated and teamwork is encouraged. Small, achievable tasks allow children to grow in confidence as they begin to take more risks in their play. The uneven ground, climbing logs and minibeasts are all part of the adventure.

3. Assembly A time to reflect, to think of others, to celebrate achievements across the curriculum, the daily assembly is a very important part of our school routine in the Infants’ School.

13.FruityTea At DUCKS, mealtimes are sociable occasions. We work hard to encourage and help to develop good table manners, sociable conversations and respect for one another. In the Infants’ School, the staff on duty give out ‘fruity tea tokens’ whenever they see examples of good behaviour at lunchtime, and the table with the most tokens each week is treated to fruity tea with the Head of DUCKS in her office.




9. Ducks of the Week In Friday’s achievement assembly, ‘Duck of the week’ is awarded to children from each class who have done something particularly special. Not only are their achievements celebrated in school but their picture is also featured in our weekly newsletter for parents.



5. Key Person In the Early Years, all our children are assigned a Key Person, who takes the lead in looking after them at DUCKS, gets to know them particularly well and plans activities to meet their interests and developmental needs. It is hugely reassuring for our youngest children to have one staff member they feel especially close to, and the bond they develop is special and significant.



14. Story Time Our children work hard all day and story time is an important time for calm, quiet and listening.


5 6. Special Books A strong link between home and school is important for children’s confidence and wellbeing. Children know that the staff at DUCKS are interested in their time at home, and that parents are interested in what they do at school. Parents and children together record exciting events in the Special Book and these are shared in school. As the children get older, they present these to the class, talking to their friends about their experiences and answering questions. This is a great opportunity for us all to listen to each other, value each other’s experiences, and strengthen the connection between school and home. 6

8. Playtime Provision Some children want to run around and let off steam, others want to chat with their friends, some need a quiet space to reflect at playtime, so the DUCKS playgrounds offer spaces to engage in a variety of different activities. The staff on duty give support and will join in or intervene if needed, but children are encouraged to make their own fun at this time, resolve disputes themselves when they can, look after each other and work together.

7. Sticker Books For KS1 All our children are given reward stickers for effort and achievement in all areas, but our older children collect them in sticker books and save up to earn a certificate, medal or trophy, which they are presented in assemblies.


Baby Room


Toddler Room


Duckling Room


Heron Class


Moorhen Class


Lapwing Class


Puffin Class


Swan Class

Year 1

Kingfisher Class

Year 1

Sandpiper Class

Year 1

Teal Class

Year 2

Avocet Class

Year 2

Curlew Class

Year 2

Mandarin Class

Forest School



Page 1 Page 2-3 Page 4-5 Page 6-7 Page 8-9 Page 10-11 Page 12-13 Page 14-15 Page 16-17 Page 18-19 Page 20-21 Page 22-23 Page 24-25 Page 26-27 Page 28-29 Page 30-31 Page 32-33 Page 34-35 Page 36-37 Page 38-39 Page 40

Made with FlippingBook - Online catalogs