Miss Hamalis’ Bulletin – Monday 18 Sept 2023

Posted: 18th September 2023

Miss Hamalis, Head Of Channing Junior School

Dear Parents 

It was an absolute pleasure to see so many of you at our Welcome Evening last week. I hope you enjoyed meeting all of the staff and parents from your daughter’s year group and that you found the Form Teachers’ talks informative. I look forward to welcoming you to more events over the academic year.

As many of you will know, I am a passionate advocate for teaching our girls how to be the very best versions of themselves. One of the ways we do this is by actively championing them to develop all of the different elements within themselves that define their characters. I strongly believe that this will stand them in good stead for the future and prepare them for life beyond school. Following my Welcome Evening talk, I have been delighted with all of your positive feedback regarding our Channing Characters (these have been added to Firefly and will be added to SchoolBase for reference at home). Many of you have described the positive impact it has had on your daughter’s mindset and shared fantastic examples of how you reinforce what we do, during the school day, at home. Here are a couple of examples (please keep them coming):

“This evening I read ‘The Lion Inside’ to P before bed. When it finished, she said, “Do you know the mouse was very brave? He was like the Bravery Mole!” Clearly the Channing Characters are really embedding and resonating with the girls.”

I really appreciate the Character Education Programme. I am super impressed by how far the whole school gets behind it. We regularly refer to Bravery Mole, Resilience Robin and Perseverance Squirrel at home to help give R more confidence to try to overcome mental obstacles and take on new challenges.”

In this morning’s assembly, I honed in on one of our characters: Responsibility Badger. We explored the meaning of the word responsibility: 

A responsibility is something you are expected to do.
When you DO something you are responsible for, there is a result.
When you DON’T do something you are responsible for, there is a consequence. 

The girls suggested examples of tasks that they may be expected to do, such as doing their homework, looking after property, as well as examples of ways that they are expected to act, such as following the Channing Promise.

Over the last week or so, the teachers have been closely observing all of the girls from Reception to Year 6 to see who has been displaying skills that would help them to be successful if they were to take on roles of responsibility in the school community. Additionally, the girls in Key Stage 2 have been enthusiastically applying to take on roles in order to put their skills in action.

All of the girls were incredibly excited to hear who had been appointed as: 

  • Form Captains (Reception – Year 5)
  • School Council (Reception – Year 6)
  • Sustainability Officers (Reception – Year 6)
  • Reading Champions (Year 3 & Year 4)
  • Digital Leaders (Year 5 & Year 6)
  • Library Leaders (Year 5 & Year 6)
  • Sports Leaders (Year 6)
  • House Captains (Year 6); and
  • New for this year: Channing Character Champions (Reception – Year 6). 

The girls, who were selected or nominated by teachers, proudly received their badges and it was touching to see how all of the girls celebrated their peers’ achievement.

Taking on a role of responsibility is an excellent way for the girls to engage with the school experience. It gives them the opportunity to learn invaluable leadership skills and take pride in all aspects of their school community working with the staff to make things even better. As a staff team we greatly value pupil voice and those in charge of the different teams/groups are looking forward to their first weekly meeting with the girls. I have already started meeting the new Head Girls, Helena S (6D) and Ruby S (6B) every Friday breaktime which I am thoroughly enjoying. This Thursday, I look forward to talking to the newly-appointed Channing Characters Champions in Reception – Year 6. 

Role of Responsibility  Member of Staff  Meeting Time & Location 
House Captains Miss Wright

Monday breaktime in 4W

Friday breaktime in 4W 

Sustainability Team  Mr Rich & Miss Baker Tuesday breaktime in 2R
Library Leaders  Ms Jupp Tuesday breaktime in the Library 
School Council  Mrs Brant & Miss Kitsis Tuesday breaktime in 5K
Digital Leaders  Miss Evans Wednesday breaktime in 3E
Sports Leaders Miss Bolton Wednesday breaktime in the Pavillion
Form Captains  Mr Entwisle Tuesday breaktime in Mr Entwisle’s Office
Channing Character Champions Miss Hamalis Thursday breaktime in Miss Hamalis’ office
Head Girls Miss Hamalis Friday breaktime in Miss Hamalis’ office

For our Jewish families celebrating Yom Kippur this week,
Yom Tov!

Wishing you all the best for the week ahead. 

Miss Dina Hamalis 

Head of the Junior School 

Curriculum Newsletters, Information for Parents & Recommended Reading Lists

Helpful Links

The Autumn Term Curriculum Newsletters as well as the Information for Parents (shared at the Welcome Evening Form Teacher presentations last week), Recommended Reading Lists for each year group and copies of the Channing Characters (for use at home) are also available to view and download from the Year group Firefly pages. Please log in to Firefly using your daughter’s account details:

Early Years Reception
Key Stage 1 Year 1
Year 2
    Key Stage 2 Year 3
Year 4
Year 5
Year 6


Birthday Cakes & Treats

You are very welcome to send in nut-free cakes or treats for your daughter to celebrate her birthday with her form or year group. Please ensure that they are separate cakes or treats rather than a large cake that needs to be sliced. Additionally, please be mindful of the size of cakes; they should be no bigger than a child’s hand. Due to health and safety, please do not send in cake pops. Furthermore, please do not send in treats for any other occasions without prior permission from your daughter’s Form Teacher.

Harvest Festival Collection

We will be running a Harvest Festival collection for Food Bank Aid from today until Monday 1 October. 

Food Bank Aid is a charity which supports over 30 independent food banks across North London by collecting, sorting and distributing food, toiletries and household items to over 16,000 people, including more than 5,200 children. There has been a significant increase in people attending food banks, with rising energy and food prices coming into effect, and they need our help!

We are delighted to help support such a worthy cause. We feel strongly as a school community that we should help raise awareness of food poverty and engage particularly with our pupils about social responsibility, but most importantly help those families who are really struggling.

Teaching & Learning News

European Day of Languages

In advance of the European Day of Languages on Tuesday 26 September next week, you could begin the celebration of language learning at home by playing language games or even attempting some challenging tongue twisters. If you have an interesting tongue twister in your language to share, why not upload it to share on the EDL website.

Poetry of Science Competition Finalist

As part of Science Week last academic year, many of the girls wrote poems for Oxford Science and Ideas Festival. Congratulations to Flo M (3E) for being selected as a finalist for her poem ‘Animals’ for the ‘People’s Choice’ award. If you would like to vote for Flo’s poem, please use the link: We wish Flo the very best of luck! 


Animals in the sea, animals on the land,

animals discovered on the beach in the sand,

Lions are fierce, also like tigers, going RAR RAR RAR!

Elephants are SO big that they can be seen from afar,

Sloths move slowly, cheetahs move like lightning,

Snakes and spiders can be very frightening!

So many animals on our Earth,

We have to be careful to remember their worth.

Using research-based evidence to help you support your child

We often get asked by parents what they can do to support their child’s learning. Thankfully, a wealth of research allows us to help answer this. Last week we shared five tips with you. Here are four more:

  1. Eat dinner together

Research suggests that there is an association between having dinner together and: 

  • Improved communication 
  • Increased motivational levels 
  • Being more optimistic about their future 
  • Improved self-esteem 

Read about the research in this fascinating study. However, it is important to note that this study only investigated the correlation between these influences, not their causation. Therefore, although there is an association between these factors, it doesn’t necessarily mean that having dinner together directly leads to these benefits – but it can’t hurt to try.


  1. Develop good sleeping habits 

The National Sleep Foundation states that the benefits of sleep include improved concentration, memory and creativity. Therefore, it is important to support your daughter to implement good sleeping habits from the start of the year. Some ways to do this include: 

  • Starting the routine a few hours before bedtime 
  • Encouraging exercise throughout the day
  • Asking children to turn off electronic devices
  • Avoiding any caffeinated drinks


  1. View failure as a learning opportunity. 

Researchers have found that the way parents react to failure has a big influence on their child’s mindset. When failure is viewed as an opportunity to learn, children are likely to develop a growth mindset. However, if failure is viewed as a source of shame or negativity, then children are more likely to have a fixed mindset. As research has consistently shown that having a growth mindset improves pupil learning, it is important to develop a supportive yet challenging environment. This helps pupils develop their resilience, whilst assuring them that they can improve.


  1. Focus on feedback not test results. 

As a parent you can support us and your child by not solely focusing on grades and test % but asking them to focus on the feedback they get. Good, growth mindset questions to ask your child are:

  • Do you know where you are going? 
  • Do you know how you are doing? 
  • Do you know what you need to do to make progress?

Health & Welfare


We all know that having worms can be irritating and time consuming to manage. We encourage everyone to check on their daughter and treat it seriously so we can stop the spread. If we all increase our hygiene then we will eventually reduce the spread of worms. Please remind your daughter (as we do at school) to thoroughly wash her hands every time she goes to the toilet and before eating. For further information:

Channing Association News

Quiz Night: Wednesday 27 September (7pm)

There is still time to buy tickets for the Channing Association Quiz Night. Join for an evening of questions, curry, drinks and socialising. You can buy individual tickets and be allocated to a table or buy as a table of 8. Further details are on Classlist.

Pre-loved Uniform Sale: Thursday 21 September (8:15am)

The Channing Association Pre-Loved Uniform Sale is this Thursday 21 September at 8:15am in the Drama Studio. Card payments only.

Any final donations of unwanted uniform in good, clean and wearable condition can be placed in the blue pre-loved uniform bins in the courtyard at the front of the school today, or tomorrow (Tuesday 19 September). Please remove your daughter’s name from items and place donations in a carrier bag before putting them into the bins.

Channing Association AGM

The Channing Association AGM (across both the Junior and Senior Schools) will be held on Monday 9 October, 7- 8pm, in the Senior School 6th Form Centre. All parents are welcome to join.

Fireworks Events

Tickets for our Fireworks Event, on Saturday 4 November, are now available to buy. There is limited availability so please don’t put off buying them as the event sold out in the first week of sales last year.

There will be hot dogs, burgers, Sri Lankan curry and churros available from 5:30 (non-meat options will be available) as well as beer, wine, mulled wine, sweets and glo accessories. Gates will open at 5:30 – 8:30pm with the display starting at 6:45. The DJ and dancers are back this year to help get the fireworks party started.