We hope you enjoyed the long weekend away and it certainly gave us all the chance to rest and recuperate. Since our last Wetherbridge, the School has been busy with behind the scenes activity. This week, I would like to showcase four of them in my article and extend my thanks to all those involved. A good week is a busy week here at WPNY, and blink and you might miss it, as they say, so this provides the opportunity to celebrate and remember together. Mr Anderson has been planning his inaugural Breakfast Concert for some time now, and whilst he never anticipated this to be a virtual event, I am sure we all agree it was a real success. If you have not had the chance to watch the concert, which was aired on 4th February, please do head to the School’s You Tube Channel and watch the progress of four of our students and the musical performances of our very own Mr Michael Noble.

It was Safer Internet Day last Tuesday and Liz Repking from Cyber Safety Consulting did the school proud again this year. This is an important topic in any school and home calendar, now more so than ever. Liz spent her time with all children across the school from Pre-K to Grade 3 and it was good to see many of you at the Parent Workshop that day. Mr Stephenson coordinated this day for the school community and my thanks to him for bringing Liz and her expertise on board again for another year.

As we left for the short break, the Early Years Team sent out a most charming activity to mark the end of National Storytelling week and Valentine’s Day, ‘Share a story with someone special’. I hope you all enjoyed this family activity and once again, I commend the team for their creativity and inventiveness!

In terms of fun and inventiveness, Mr Kinsey celebrated National Inventor’s Day with his Friday Virtual Assembly last week, and Mr Stephenson marked National Storytelling Week with his excellent assembly, enlisting the help of children across the school. The time, care and sheer creativity that goes into these Friday showcases is impressive and my thanks to all who respectfully uphold this important school tradition. Mrs Friend will jump into her take on ‘World Thinking Day’ tomorrow, and our Mrs Monaco will lead the way to mark ‘International Women’s Day’ in March. Of course, we have our next Family Assembly next week on Friday 26th February at 9.15am and we hope to see you all there, as ever.

In terms of a school charity update, It was good to receive a surprise letter from City Harvest on 10th February, by way of a thank you for the support our school community gave in December 2020. Coming together, we have donated 300Ibs to the Daily News Food Drive ahead of the holiday season. As we know, our support helps to put meals on the tables of any New Yorkers who do not have enough food for themselves or their families. Additionally, we raised over 235 pounds of food through our #GiveHealthy online food drive and City Harvest have emailed you directly if you kindly made donations. It was a pleasure to receive this certificate from City Harvest and to take part in such a transformative holiday charity programme. My thanks to Seema Blott and Jackie Lucas for championing this on our behalf as Chairs of the Charity Committee for 21-22.

On Monday 8th February, all classes across Nursery to Grade 3 took part in their first Chinese taster classes with Beehive Mind. The children learnt about the Lunar New Year and the Year of the Ox and the older students took part in a full immersion workshop, learning about favourite foods. Our thanks Lulu Laoshi and Fan Laoshi and we shall learn more about this programme in our next Family Assembly.

And finally, we are pleased to feature our new WPNY table tennis (ping-pong) bats. We love table tennis and are sure this will be a big hit at the School. This game has many benefits, one being that it sharpens up your hand-eye coordination. It requires your brain to fire up neurons that send a signal to your hand, telling it when the ball is in the perfect range to make the hit. The game is also a valuable tool when it comes to increasing the speed of your reflexes. This game can get up to super high speeds! In 2003 in New Zealand, Lark Brandt won the World’s Fastest Smash Competition. That ball was flying at 70 miles per hour! In professional matches, the ball often achieves speeds of 58 km/h, requiring very fast reflexes to stand a chance. Whilst we may start at a slightly slower pace at WPNY for now, let’s not dismiss where your children might go with this in the future! The game is also an excellent way to stay in shape, keep fit and have fun! It is certainly one of my favourites from family holidays growing up and watch this space for more detail on table tennis at WPNY…