Ficino School Letter Week 4, Term 3, 2017

Many Schools have taken their foot off the accelerator with respect to teaching children to write. Traditionally this was one of the mainstays of a basic education – the three R’s – Reading, Writing and Arithmetic. Although handwriting is still taught, it has definitely taken a back seat in many educational establishments, in favour of computers and other electronic devices. It was interesting therefore to read an article in the Herald last weekend entitled ‘Is Technology killing the act of handwriting?”. Dr Michelle Dickinson poses some interesting questions. She notes that although it might be faster to type than write, this “may not necessarily translate to better learning and retention of information”. Later in the article she suggests that “writing movements leave a motor memory in children’s brains which help them recognise letters.” One could conclude that the act of handwriting enriches memory in a way that tapping a key board does not. Two and a half thousand years ago in Ancient Greece Plato complained that the new trend of writing things down was weakening people’s memories and ability to use their intellect. Are we on the verge of a new era? How much weaker can our memories become before the human ability to reason suffers? Furthermore, is not a careful piece of handwriting a thing of Beauty?

Peter Crompton


Good Works for Classes 2,4,6, 8 & Cross Country Awards Assembly – Friday 1st September – 8.30am
Good Works for Classes 2,4,6,8 and Cross Country Awards will take place next Friday 1st September at 8.30am. First place-getters in the Cross Country runs will be awarded a medal and certificate and second and third places will receive a certificate. All parents are warmly invited.

Music Competition – Thursday 7/9
Applications forms are now available for students to enter this year’s Music Competition to be held in Week 6 of this term on Thursday 7th September. The forms are with the music teachers and students will discuss their pieces and submit entries through their music teachers. Spare application forms are held by form teachers, Mrs Brickland and the office.

All students who are learning a musical instrument are invited to enter, and entries from students whose instrument teachers do not come to Ficino School to give their lessons are especially welcome. Those students should collect their forms from their teacher or Mrs Ashton.

All application forms need to be handed in to Mrs Brickland or the Office by Monday 28th August.

Photolife School Photos – Friday 8/9
The prepaid class and portrait photo envelopes have gone home with the children this week. Could these please be completed and returned with the money to class teachers or the school office by Monday 4th September. Sibling portraits will be taken following completion of individual portrait photos. Pre-paid sibling envelopes must be completed before photo day. These envelopes are available from the school office.

Sports teams photos are scheduled first, at approximately 9am, so please could all parents make sure that all children in hockey, netball and ski teams wear their sports uniform to school and bring their full school uniform to change into after the sports photos. Please could coaches and managers be available (if possible) for the photos. Music ensemble children should also bring their instruments. Children will need to wear their blazers please.

Grandparents Morning – Thursday 14/9 – 9.30am – 11.45am
An invitation to our Grandparents Morning has been sent home this week and will also be emailed to parents for forwarding on to Grandparents. For catering purposes please RSVP by Monday 11th September. Thank you.

Children Arriving at School Early & Collection
Children arriving at school early are looked after by a teacher from 7.45am until 8.05am in the school library. If you arrive before 7.45am, please wait with your child until the teacher arrives. Thank you. Please also be reminded that students from Classes 1, 2 & 3 are dismissed at 2.55pm and Classes 4 and above at 3.05pm. Please do not join the traffic queue too early if you are collecting an older child. This helps avoid traffic congestion building up down View Road.

Please note thtat there have been a number of flu viruses around. If your child has a fever or seems unwell, please keep them at home so that we don’t spread this through the School.