Mrs Bennett’s Bulletin, Friday 22 January 2021

Good morning, Prep School family, 

Welcome to Friday! We have made it through another week! 

I don’t know if you have noticed a theme running through my quotes this week. If you have, well done. If you haven’t, they have all been from Winnie the Pooh as Monday was his birthday and he turned 95 years old. 

Now as a child, I didn’t appreciate how good Winnie the Pooh actually was and I am sure many of the adults reading this can relate. It is only since I have grown up and started re-reading them to children that the genius of A. A. Milne becomes clear. 

I love the simplicity of the Winnie the Pooh stories but also the deep meanings that these stories convey. Who would have thought that a few adventures, usually based around honey, in the Hundred Acre Wood could have taught us so much! 

I read this wonderful article last weekend and I thought I would share it with you. It is called ‘The five most important lessons I learnt from Winnie the Pooh’. I cannot claim to have written the following lessons but I do fully agree with them. I borrowed them from a website that I cannot find again to credit – so whoever you are out there who wrote this, thank you for sharing.  

1. Seize the day

“What day is it?” said Pooh. “It’s today,” squeaked Piglet. “My favourite day,” responds Pooh.

A good day is a good day. A bad day can become a good story, what is important is that we make the most of what we have. Undeniably profound, Pooh teaches us to take pleasure in life and seize the day. 

Why is this an important lesson for us? Remember that slide you never wanted to go down? Well your child is watching you now and this is your chance to teach them resilience, to show them how to feel the fear and do things anyway. Seizing the day helps us to create memories and be more present. 

2. Always believe something wonderful is about to happen

“Supposing a tree fell down, Pooh, when we were underneath it?” “Supposing it didn’t” said Pooh after careful thought. Piglet was comforted by this.

Sometimes it’s fun to feel scared, like the moment before you go on a fairground ride. These are the moments we ‘risk on purpose’ and set aside our worries, because we know that something wonderful will happen. These are the moments that lead to fun experiences and make memories.

Why is this an important lesson for us? We can help build resilience by talking about our worries and giving each other strategies to think about things differently. Problem solving together builds on trust, communication and listening skills.

3. We all feel different, because we ARE!

“Hallo!” said Tigger. “I’ve found somebody just like me. I thought I was the only one of them.”

When was the last time you felt out of place? There are moments where we all feel worried about being different. Children begin to recognise the differences in the people around them from the age of 2, so it’s important they’re encouraged to recognise and celebrate their difference early on.

Why is this an important lesson for us? Challenging the idea of ‘normal’ and teaching each other about diversity helps to cultivate acceptance of ourselves and the people around them.

4. Sometimes just being there is enough

Piglet sidled up to Pooh from behind. “Pooh!” he whispered. “Yes, Piglet?”  “Nothing,” said Piglet, taking Pooh’s paw. “I just wanted to be sure of you.”

Winnie the Pooh’s stories are filled with acts of mindfulness. Being present is a present we can all give and there are many ways we can practice this. From yoga to device free days, being present with each other strengthens our bonds and helps us to connect. By choosing to slow down, savour the moment and remain focussed on one task we can begin creating true presence. 

Why is this an important lesson for us? Our children are growing up in a world full of swipes, scrolls and clicks. We need to help them learn how to switch off, be still and be mindful in the moment, so that they can also appreciate nature and maintain a healthy balance of mind. This also applies to us adults as well. 

5. Kindness is a gift everyone can afford to give

“A little consideration, a little thought for others, makes all the difference.” (Eeyore)

Building our emotional literacy is really important. It helps us understand how we can be kind, and what ‘kindness’ looks, feels and sounds like. Kindness starts at home and what’s more – its positively contagious! We can let each other know how we are making other people feel by highlighting these acts and by praising kind behaviours. 

Why is this an important lesson for us? Children learn from how they see us adults treat people, so looking for opportunities in our day to day lives where we can model kindness is fundamental to building our capacity to show it.

So much to be learnt from Winnie the Pooh and his friends. He really is a very wise old bear! 

Days of the year theme: Answer Your Cat’s Questions Day, Hot Sauce Day, Celebration of Life Day and Blond Brownie Day.

Quote of the Day: “If there ever comes a day when we can’t be together, keep me in your heart. I’ll stay there forever.” – Winnie the Pooh

Happier January calendar task (this month’s activities are based on doing things that make us happier):

*Try out something new that takes you out of your comfort zone! 

TOP’s weekly activity: Research a famous or historical figure and write a diary entry as them. Can you then present it in an unusual way?

Life skill of the day: Learn to bake bread

Joke of the day: 

What is a witch’s favourite lesson in school?

Spelling! 

Fact of the Day: 

A shrimp’s heart is in its head.

Sleeps til Santa: 336 days! 

Three things I’m looking forward to today (thanks to Mrs Hinch for the inspiration): Can you try this each day? Remember, it focuses your mind on the positive and reminds us to show gratitude for things, no matter how small! 

Today I am looking forward to: HPW merit assembly, story time with Reception W and slightly more daylight than any other day this week!   

Have a fantastic Friday and a super weekend – you have all worked so hard you deserve the rest, 

Stay safe

Mrs Bennett