We officially have a sense of humour!

The Finalists and Highly Commended schools have been announced in the Muddy Stilettos Best Schools Awards 2022.  Channing is delighted to have been Highly Commended in the Best Sense of Humour category.  

Those who know us well, know that we weave lightness and fun into every aspect of the school day. Just one example is Hallowe’en which sees students and teachers vying with each other for the scariest and most creative costume; this academic year Mrs Lindsey Hughes was a werewolf, Mr Underwood came as a zombie, complete with vacant stare and tilted head, and Ms Newman was a skeleton!

Then there’s ‘Skipping Out’ which is a marvel to behold and a beloved part of Channing School tradition. Alumnae frequently ask us if the tradition is still upheld and they can all hum the theme tune decades after leaving school!

Channing Christmas is legendary. Junior School pupils enjoy a winter bazaar, carol singing in the courtyard and a visit from Santa, as well as Channing Christmas puddings which are decorated with designs by pupils and sold for charity. Not to mention the obligatory Christmas lunch and Christmas jumper day. The most exciting part of the term’s whole school gathering is when everyone from Reception – Y13 joins in with Christmas carols. The firm favourite is ‘The 12 Days of Christmas’ where each year group sings a different verse and actions. The Year 5 girls are responsible for holding up the gold rings (hoops covered in gold tinsel) and without fail there is raucous laughter and cheering.

Perhaps most exciting was the opportunity for one of the pupils to be Head for the Day and switch places with Miss Hamalis which included announcing the results of the previous day’s House Competition Day via the loudspeaker, carrying out a pupil voice survey with the Y5 and Y6 girls to create a wishlist of games and equipment for the new terrace, touring around the school to check in on all of the classes; and reading a story to the Reception classes. In her busy schedule, she also enjoyed having lunch with the Senior Management Team and sipping hot chocolate with biscuits in the Staffroom.

In the Senior School, every classroom is decorated in a different style, with entertainment to match, and judged by the Head Girls and Headmistress. This year we enjoyed the following: A STEM classroom where they cloned Dr Frank – 20 times!!! – and a DNA themed post box to match; Lockdown registration which was hilarious – “I think her microphone’s not working, I’ll just text her” – and very, very believable; a reconstruction of Pudding Lane and the outbreak of the Great Fire of London: a dozen beautifully designed and built houses and special mention to Samuel Pepys for burying his cheese in the garden; an airport with excellent airport security – very embarrassing for the Headmistress to be caught in possession of so much non-Channing contraband in her suitcase – plus an intricately made passport and boarding pass; a beautiful, calming fairy world – an oasis in the noise and bustle of the afternoon; a Despicable Me themed room, with an amazing laboratory and scintillating performance by Gru; a circus performance, complete with acrobats, magician, a tiger and Dumbo flying at the end; a saloon, with choreographed line dance and song and a showdown between the Sheriff and Kowboy Kanmwaa (aka Mrs Kanmwaa); this year’s winning entry – a NASA launch of the rocket Conabor 10.4 – with lots of Channing jokes and a strong sustainability message. Their postbox was extraordinary too, including actual sound effects!

The fun never ends, over the last two years Senior School students have been entertained by staff beatboxing as well as karaoke, pizza and ice cream at various school events. Junior School pupils have been surprised and delighted by the appearance of life-size metal flamingoes – who can fail to smile at the sight of a bright pink flamingo greeting you when you arrive at school on a cold Monday morning?

Congratulations to everyone for playing their part in making Channing such a fun and funny place to be – we knew we had a sense of humour but now it’s official!