A different approach and manner

Peter Stanford

We sometimes forget – probably because we are used to it – how incredibly varied a Whitgift week is, and this last week more than most. It’s actually quite a good microcosm of Whitgift life, containing as it does, between Monday 16th and Friday 20th May the following: public exams (of course), PSHEE talk by Chris Hemmings, EPQ presentations, water polo, tennis, basketball, football (yes) and golf fixtures, academic enrichment (another talk – this time from Peter Stanford), assemblies, house activities (junior house cricket – which I saw the exciting closing stages of), Fourth Form English lecture, cricket and athletics fixtures, a parent webinar, a governors meeting, a theatre trip, tennis fixtures, a chamber concert, a parent breakfast and some more cricket to end. And that’s all before the weekend.

Talk to most senior boys and they will say that taking opportunities is one of the big lessons they have learned, and though it’s a cliché, it’s true. But I’d go further. A group of senior students were discussing one of the visiting speakers after his talk, and saying how they’d been struck by his different approach and manner. Of course: students get to know their own teachers quite quickly, their manner and approach. And it’s good for us all to be challenged sometimes with a new approach, a new angle on something. Some departments (represented in the above list by the English lectures) get a different teacher to run a revision seminar with a class sometimes – just to try out a different approach. We should never become too comfortable. So, watch out Mr Kirby’s Third Form English set, whom I am down to teach next week!

All the while, Billy Elliot is in full rehearsal mode: a brave production, and one that promises to be outstanding. I’ve seen some snippets and I’ve heard some snippets. Get your tickets now while you still can!