Miss Hamalis’ Bulletin – Monday 27 November 2023

Posted: 27th November 2023

Miss Hamalis, Head Of Channing Junior School

Dear Parents 

The girls never fail to amaze me and today was no exception. This morning, during their assembly, the Year 5 girls took us all on an incredible journey back to the Victorian era. The carefully crafted programme, incorporating songs and theatrical elements, was divided into three parts, each shedding light on different aspects of Victorian life. 

The assembly kicked off with a theatrical presentation of the Year 5 Autumn Term class reading text: Berlie Doherty’s ‘Street Child,’ which is a gripping tale following the protagonist, young Jim Jarvis. The vivid portrayal took us through the trials and struggles faced by Jim as he navigated the harsh realities of Victorian England. From the pie shop scene to the challenging life in a workhouse, the girls skillfully depicted the poignant moments from this historical narrative. 

The narrative then transitioned to explore the various job opportunities available during the Victorian era. The cleverly staged Victorian Job Fair highlighted the stark choices faced by individuals, especially children, who sought employment in factories and mills. The dangers and hardships associated with jobs such as chimney sweeping, coal mining, matchstick making and cotton milling were portrayed with both humour and solemnity.

The final segment transported us to a Victorian classroom, where strict discipline and traditional teaching methods were the order of the day. With great enthusiasm, the girls portrayed the challenges of education during this period, highlighting the stark contrast to modern-day learning. 

I extend my heartfelt appreciation to Miss Kitsis and Miss Snowdowne (Year 5 Form Teachers), Mrs Lynch (Drama Lead), Miss Holmes (Teaching Assistant) and the girls for their dedication, creativity and hard work in putting together such an informative and entertaining assembly. Their commitment to historical accuracy and storytelling was truly commendable.

I am sure the Year 5 parents will enjoy this immersive journey into the past as much as we did. I look forward to welcoming them to watch their daughters in their assembly on Wednesday from 8.30 – 9am. Please arrive no earlier than 8.25am when you will be asked to sign in at the iron gates to be escorted to Fairseat Hall by our Specialist Teachers. 

History is a much loved area of the broad and balanced curriculum that we have carefully crafted for the girls’ educational experience. We believe that education goes beyond the acquisition of basic skills; it is a holistic journey that shapes the character, intellect and creativity of each and every pupil. Our commitment is rooted in the understanding that every child is unique, with diverse talents, interests and potential waiting to be explored. Our curriculum ensures that your daughter is exposed to a rich tapestry of knowledge, experiences and skills. Here are a few reasons why we embrace this approach:

  • Holistic Development: Our curriculum is designed to nurture not only academic prowess but also the social, emotional and physical wellbeing of each girl. By offering a diverse range of subjects and activities, we aim to cultivate well-rounded individuals ready to face the challenges of the future.
  • Unleashing Creativity: Creativity is a crucial skill in today’s rapidly changing world. Through a diverse curriculum, we encourage our pupils to think critically, solve problems creatively and express themselves in various ways.
  • Catering to Individual Strengths: Children have unique strengths and interests. A broad curriculum allows us to identify and nurture these talents, helping each girl to discover her passion and potential areas of expertise.
  • Preparation for the World Beyond the School Gates: The world our pupils will enter is dynamic and interconnected. A curriculum that includes a variety of subjects and experiences prepares them for the challenges and opportunities they will encounter in their future academic and professional endeavours.
  • Fostering a Love for Learning: By providing a diverse and engaging curriculum, we aim to instil a love for learning that extends beyond the classroom. We want our pupils to be curious (like Curiosity Fox), motivated and lifelong learners.

We value your partnership in creating a positive and enriching educational experience for your daughter. Your support and involvement contribute significantly to the success of their educational journey.

I look forward to seeing many of you at the Winter Fair on Friday. As ‘The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe’ is one of my favourite childhood books, I am particularly looking forward to it!

With warm regards

Miss Dina Hamalis 

Head of the Junior School 

Calendar & Events

School Calendar

You can view all events for the year in the school calendar via our Parent Portal: SchoolBase login. Your calendar view should already be filtered to display the Junior School events and events which are specific to your daughter’s year group. 

The ‘School Calendar Parent View’ button shows the complete calendar, which can be viewed by each month, week or day. Events also appear on the right-hand side of the home page under ‘Forthcoming Events’ and the monthly view of the calendar also appears at the bottom of the home page.

Just One Tree Day: Wednesday 29 November

On Wednesday this week, we are encouraging pupils and staff to donate to dress up in tree colours or as an environmentalist. We would like the girls to think sustainably and wear clothes they already have. To donate to Just One Tree, please click this link. There will be opportunities throughout the week to access the QR codes at the Junior School entrance (please also see below), and there will be buckets for cash donations available on Wednesday (on the school gates) and in the Office Thursday to Friday. Please note that the JustGiving page will only be available until Monday 4 December. 

All of KS2 will be assigned the same homework activity which will challenge the girls to make a simple, eco-friendly tree decoration to hang either on one of our Christmas trees, or outside. Reception and KS1 will have the opportunity to do this during the week at school.

Waterlow Food Bank Collection

The first food bank collection of the academic year for the Alexandra Wylie Tower Foundation is almost complete. The final day for girls in Waterlow House to bring in donations is Thursday 30 November.

Suggested items for donations include: washing tablets, tinned/canned produce, pasta (and sauces), rice, spices, olive oil, juices, stocks, cereals, tea and coffee. Please ensure all items are long-life produce, as regrettably,  fresh items cannot be donated. Clean sauce pots (from your favourite takeaway), egg cartons and tupperware are also helpful donations as it helps the food bank volunteers to share out items.

Please continue to donate as generously as you have been for the final few days to ensure lots of other families receive essential food items over the winter months. All donations are to be placed in one of the blue, labelled Food Bank collection bins in the courtyard. 

Entry to the Winter Fair: Friday 1 December

Girls need to be collected at their usual Friday dismissal time and taken to the Winter Fair by a parent/guardian. As the Winter Fair is an after school event, all children must be accompanied by a nominated  parent/guardian even if they normally self-dismiss. One parent can be nominated to take multiple girls; please let their Form Teacher know any altered arrangements before Friday. Please note, that in order to make the entry to the Winter Fair as smooth as possible, some Friday pick-up locations for some Forms have been adjusted. Please see below for the information as we are operating a strictly one way system.

To help with dismissals, parents must inform Form Teachers (before Friday) of collection arrangements. This includes those who are helping at the Winter Fair and require another adult to collect their daughter(s) on their behalf. Please be reminded that there will be no Mini Owls or Late Owls. 

Dismissal times and locations are as follows:

  • 2.50pm: Reception (dismissal from Reception Outdoor Area) Reception parents/ guardians to enter the school via the black side doors to collect their daughter(s) from the Reception outdoor area. 
  • 3.00pm: Year 1 (dismissal from Reception Outdoor Area, 1W) Year 1 parents/ guardians to enter the school via the black side doors to collect their daughter(s) from the Reception outdoor area. 
  • 3.00pm: Year 2 (dismissal from main gate). Year 2 parents/ guardians collect their daughter(s) and enter the Winter Fair via the black side doors. 
  • 3.10pm: Year 3 (3E dismissal from 3E classroom and 3F dismissal from 3F classroom, via 3F/3E terrace doors). Year 3 parents/ guardians enter via the black side doors to collect. 
  • 3.20pm: Year 4 (dismissal from main gate). Year 4 parents/ guardians collect their daughter(s) and enter the Winter Fair via the black side doors. 
  • 3.25pm: Year 5 (dismissal from main gate) Year 5 parents/ guardians collect their daughter(s) and enter the Winter Fair via the black side doors.
  • 3.25pm: Year 6 (dismissal from Reception outdoor area). Year 6 parents/ guardians enter the school via the black side doors to collect their daughter(s) from the Reception outdoor area.

Carols in Pond Square: Wednesday 13 December

The Highgate Society is hosting their annual Carols in Pond Square this year on Wednesday 13 December at 6:30pm.

Spring Term Extra-Curricular Clubs Programme

Clubs Programme Information & Deadline

Sign-up for the Spring Term Clubs Programme has been live since Wednesday 22 November 9am, and will close today at 6pm. After this point, you will be unable to sign your daughter up for any extracurricular clubs. Please read this document carefully, which provides written instructions on how to access the Parent Portal. If you have any trouble accessing the Parent Portal, please contact directly (not the School Office as we are unable to help with technical queries relating to Schoolbase). 

Similar to last term, when signing up, Schoolbase will either add your daughter to the club list, or add your daughter to the Waiting List if the club is already full. This does not mean that your daughter has definitely been put on the Waiting List as the club places will still be reviewed once they close for sign up. 

Confirmation of the club(s) that your daughter(s) can attend will be confirmed the week commencing Monday 4 December (an email will be sent to you confirming when everything is up-to-date on Schoolbase). 

All clubs will commence on Monday 15 January and will run for 9 or 8 weeks, with the final week being Monday 18 March for both internal and external clubs. Once a place on chargeable external clubs has been confirmed, you will be charged for the block of 8 or 9 sessions for the Spring Term, which will be added to your school bill. This is because all pupils are required to commit to the full block of sessions. If you have signed your daughter up for an external club, you are strongly encouraged to sign up to a club run by Channing Staff that takes place beforehand. If you do not, your daughter will attend Waiters for the duration and will be collected by the Club Leader before the club begins. Please remember that after 4pm, you will need to ensure you sign your daughter up for Late Owls, should she be attending after her club. 

If you have any questions about the club programme, please contact Miss Bodell: 

Friday 1 December: 

Reminder: all after-school clubs and Mini/Late Owls will be cancelled on Friday 1 December due to the Winter Fair. Before school clubs will run as usual: 

  • Key Stage 1 Multisports
  • Years 3&4 Football 
  • Key Stage 2 Karate

Friday 8 December: 

Extracurricular clubs and Late Owls will continue to run after school on Friday 8 December. Whilst KS2 Karate is cancelled that day; KS1 MultiSports and Years 3 & 4 Football will continue to run as normal. So that we can plan for the correct number of adults to escort pupils back to school, please complete this Google Form to indicate whether your daughter will be returning to school for her club, or will be collected by family attending the Winter Celebration in St. Michael’s Church. Please complete this form by this Wednesday 29 November 2023. 

Young Art Competition


The girls are invited to enter the prestigious Young Art competition for a chance to exhibit their work at the Royal College of Art. They can enter an A4-sized painting, drawing or print based on this year’s theme ‘Our Living World’. The school will cover the entry fee of £2 (maximum of one entry per person) and proceeds go to a specific research project into childhood cancers at UCL Great Ormond Street. If you would like to donate additional cash to the charity, please send this with your daughter’s artwork. All artwork must be brought into school by Friday 12 January. Entries should have the artist’s name, year group, DOB and school clearly displayed in block capitals on the back. It is also a good idea to add a sentence explaining what is depicted overleaf. Girls from the Junior School have had success in this competition in previous years, so we cannot wait to see what our pupils can produce this time around. We wish them all good luck!

Channing Association News

Winter Fair on Friday: Final Chance to Buy Tickets!

Only a few days left to buy tickets to the Narnia Winter Fair this Friday after school! All girls must be collected at the end of the school day (no clubs or Mini/ Late Owls) and accompanied to the Fair, which opens at 2:50pm and ends at 5pm. The Fair is cashless unless you have exact change.

The Channing Association looks forward to welcoming the girls and their families to venture through the wardrobe into an enchanted Narnia Wonderland, where they will discover Santa’s Grotto and themes from the beloved story ‘The Lion the Witch and the Wardrobe’. We encourage you to enjoy the book or the film with your children ahead of Friday, and look forward to welcoming you for a magical Christmassy afternoon!

  • Click here to buy tickets
  • Click here to sign up to donate baked goods to the White Witch Cafe
  • Click here to preorder a 2023 Channing Winter Fair tea towel or tote bag, hand-illustrated by Y3 mum Mrs Nicole Mitchell
  • Click here for event details

Please support your class by signing up to help with any prep and to man stalls.

Winter Fair Raffle - Tickets Now On Sale!

Buy your tickets for the Winter Fair fundraising raffle in aid of Great Ormond St Hospital, and be in for a chance to win some amazing prizes! Family and friends are welcome – and encouraged – to also buy tickets!

Buy your tickets here and share the link with family and friends!

Prizes include:

Dinner for 4 at Claridges

Tickets to Willows Farm

Coaching session with Freddie Ljungberg, Arsenal and Spurs tickets, signed Pelé & Maradona shirts

Tea party with Miss Hamalis

Tickets to Ed Gamble at Hackney Empire

Everyman Cinema tickets

Spa, Beauty Salon and piercing vouchers

Local pub vouchers

1-2-1 tennis lesson with Mr Entwisle

Gym memberships & coaching passes

Harvey Nichols hamper

1-2-1 Drama lesson with Mrs Lynch

And many more items!