EMAT Home School Newsletter 12th June

Posted on: 12/06/2020

Endeavour MAT Newsletter 12th June 2020  E


Music is a uniquely universal method of communication, it has the power to influence mood and to enhance life.  Music has been used to unite and inspire and is known to be a valuable tool to improve wellbeing.  As we navigate our way through these uncertain times music can help connect us despite us being physically apart from many friends and family members and can be used to promote a positive state of mind, helping to keep anxiety at bay.

Throughout our schools we are lucky to have a great range of music lessons and extra curricular groups which include numerous opportunities to make or learn music!  Groups include Ukulele Bands, Gospel Choir, Brass Band as well as specialist music teachers offering guitar, piano, singing and drum lessons.  Our choirs perform at various school events and special assemblies, our Gospel Choir was invited to perform at a local Care Home and our new Stone Lodge Choir performed at their local church in Stone.

Music plays a key role across our schools and we are justifiably proud of our talented students which we celebrate at school events including the Art’s Celebration Evening event at WGSB which invites students from across our schools to perform.  Students at WGSG composed and wrote the lyrics for our school song, Unity which they performed live at a National Teachers Conference – the song is incredibly powerful and uplifting and forms an integral part of our school identity.  You can hear the student composers of Unity perform by visiting here

Pictured, student composers of the WGSG school song, Unity with Mrs Dent, Head of Music at WGSG.

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Learning a musical instrument or joining a choir are fun and social activities which can help develop talents and interests.  The benefits of learning and performing music go beyond that of the enjoyment and sense of accomplishment that they bring.  Studies have found that learning a musical instrument can strengthen memory and reading skills as well as develop concentration.  The practice and repetition of the process of mastering a new song or instrument instils discipline and dedication as well as promoting the ability to process multiple things at once. 

Music training can also strengthen a person’s self-expression and can help you to break out of any inhibiting barriers.  Music can help provide an outlet for expression, to reduce stress and improve communication issues which are difficult to express.

Above all, listening to music has been scientifically proven to make you happy!  Our brains release dopamine, the ‘happy hormone’ when we listen to music… so whatever your taste in music or musical ability,  get those earphones on … pick up that musical instrument and enjoy!

Mrs Black at WGSG has put together a Musical reading list for you to explore.

Screen shot 2020 06 12 at 102851I Was Born for This - Alice Oseman - Year 10 and above

For Angel Rahimi, life is only about one thing: The Ark – a pop-rock trio of teenage boys who are currently taking the world by storm. Being part of The Ark’s fandom has given her everything – her friendships, her dreams, her place in the world. Jimmy Kaga-Ricci owes everything to The Ark too. He’s their frontman – and playing in a band is all he’s ever dreamed of doing. It’s just a shame that recently everything in his life seems to have turned into a bit of a nightmare.

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Guitar Notes - Mary Amato

Tripp, who plays guitar only for himself, and Lyla, a cellist whose talent has already made her famous but not happy, form an unlikely friendship when they are forced to share a practice room at their high school.

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Leah on the Offbeat - Becky Albertalli

Leah Burke—girl-band drummer, master of deadpan, and Simon Spier’s best friend from the award-winning Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda—takes center stage in this novel of first love and senior-year angst.


Screen shot 2020 06 12 at 102920Solo - Kwame Alexander

Blade never asked for a life of the rich and famous. In fact, he’d give anything not to be the son of Rutherford Morrison, a washed-up rock star and drug addict with delusions of a comeback. In reality, the only thing Blade has in common with Rutherford is the music that lives inside them.

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Drums, Girls & Dangerous Pie - Jordan Sonnenblick

Thirteen-year-old Steven has a totally normal life; he plays drums in the All-Star Jazz band, has a crush on the hottest girl in the school, and is constantly annoyed by his five-year-old brother, Jeffrey. But when Jeffrey is diagnosed with leukaemia, Steven's world is turned upside down.

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Virtuosity - Jessica Martinez

Virtuosity follows teen violin prodigy Carmen Bianchi as she preps for the most important violin competition of her career. When her main rival Jeremy King, starts to take an interest in her, she has to figure out what’s really important: winning the competition or learning to love music again.


David I of WGSB 7D, has shared with us what learning a musical instrument means to him.  “Music makes me feel happy and it makes me feel proud. Music means a lot to me because my uncle died last year and he was a really good singer so he inspires me to make music”

David, what a moving and positive way to honour the memory of your uncle – you have every reason to feel proud.

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Callum B of WGSB is studying Music at GCSE and has been spending time during lockdown playing and listening to music as well as working on his composition piece

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Sofia B of WGSG 8C has shared news of her activities over the last few weeks.

Sofia has been supporting the National Children’s Day UK initiative ‘Small Steps, Big Learnings’ by contributing artwork detailing what she has learnt over the last few months.  The initiative has sought to connect children and families and share their experiences and what they have learnt during lockdown.  The ideas and thoughts contributed by the children can be viewed on their website here.

Sofia has also been maintaining her physical exercises during lockdown by stretching and dancing outside (weather permitting!).  Sofia has also welcomed a new family member, a British Blue Shorthair kitten boy, who she has named Hugo, during lockdown and has been learning how to care for him.

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Mrs Tame of WGSB has recommended the new TV series of ‘The Planets’, presented by Professor Brian Cox, which explores the dramatic lives of the eight majestic planets/worlds that make up our solar system.  This brilliant and evocative series is a ‘must watch’ for the whole family and is a great accompaniment to the KS3 science curriculum.

For more details and to watch on iPlayer visit


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Prior to being a physicist and TV presenter, Professor Brian Cox was in a band called D:Ream who had a number one single ‘Things Can Only Get Better’, a sentiment I think we can all relate to during lockdown.  Click below to hear the track on YouTube.


Congratulations to Eva W of WGSG, 10H, who has been shortlisted for the Live Canon Poetry Prize, and her poem has been published in the 2020 anthology. The competition is for under 18s and is judged by age category.  For more details, or to buy a copy of the Anthology visit: http://www.livecanon.co.uk/competitions-and-opportunities/childrenscompetition

Eva is pictured below holding a copy of the published Anthology

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Maddison B of Stone Lodge has been working on an Art project focusing on cubism, Maddison has gone above and beyond the set tasks by making this brilliant papier-mache mask ahead of schedule! Mrs Maxwell is very impressed with both your work ethic and the finished mask.

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We are aware that students may be spending more time on devices and online than they usually do. The government has produced guidance which outlines resources to help keep children safe from any risks online and how to get support and advice. This can be found at: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/coronavirus-covid-19-keeping-children-safe-online/coronavirus-covid-19-support-for-parents-and-carers-to-keep-children-safe-online

Message from Donna Lodge, CEO Endeavour MAT

At a time of great sadness for the people of the USA as they deal with the spectre of modern and systemic racism following the death of George Floyd, we are very proud of the impact one of our Trustees, Shereen Daniels, is having in bringing insight into the issue of racism closer to home. With remarkable honesty and candor and a great deal of soul searching. Shereen has released a series of videos via YouTube outlining how it feels to be black in modern day Britain, which can be viewed here  These videos have gathered world-wide traction and have prompted a wake-up call for so many people.

Creating a more equal and just world is an important aim within Endeavour MAT and we continue to be committed to promoting equality across all of our schools as we listen, educate and develop our students and staff to ensure that we are truly providing diversity, inclusion and equal opportunities. It is clear that there is still work to be done, but we will not shy away from the task ahead.

Donna Lodge

We were saddened to hear the news that one of our staff alumni, Mrs Sheila Wakeford has recently died.  Sheila was the Head of English and a leading light at Wilmington Grammar School for Girls throughout the 1980's.  Sheila was well-known for being approachable, kind and endlessly supportive of all our students and staff.  Please join us in sending our condolences to her family.

Message from our PTA - EasyFundraising.org.uk

We all shopping more online during lockdown and doing this via UK’s leading online fundraising service ‘Easyfundrasing’ is by far one of the simplest ways you can help.
It's really simple, here's how:
1. Go to https://www.easyfundraising.org.uk/invite/3PIBZN/ and join for free (select Wilmington Grammar School for Boys - Dartford)
2. Every time you shop online go via easyfundraising, then select the site you want to shop with, e.g. Amazon, eBay, Currys, John Lewis, Sainsbury’s, Asda, Virgintrains, the list is endless.... and start shopping - it's that simple!
3. When you purchase your goods, our school gets a small donation for no extra cost to you - the pennies really do add up!!
So each time you shop no matter how big or small the purchase, WGSB PTA will receive a donation, on everything from a weekly shop to purchasing your annual holiday and it doesn't cost you or us a penny extra!
Thank you for your support - it really is very much appreciated.

Stay safe and stay in touch.  Next week we will be welcoming our Y10 and Y12 students back to school for face-to-face lessons.  The latest letters and information from our Head Teachers detailing the process for a safe return to school can be referenced on the Correspondence page.  A video from Mr Guthrie can be viewed on our website here.

All news and photos for inclusion in our newsletter can be sent to gwellcoat@endeavour-mat.co.uk. In the first instance. 


Very best wishes,


Mrs Lodge CEO Endeavour MAT, Mrs Lawson HT, WGSG, Mr Guthrie HT, WGSB and Mr Barnett HT, Stone Lodge School.

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