Issue 8 Friday 6 May 2016  

Dr McNerney writes....

Welcome back to the summer term! It seems hard to think that this final term of the academic year is already well underway. As always at school, the general busyness of the day means that time flies! This newsletter is packed with information about what the boys have been up to so far this term and I hope that you enjoy reading it.

I am sure that you have all seen the new signs at school that show our final logo and colours for the Merchant Taylors’ Prep brand. We took our time in developing them to ensure that we fulfilled the dual aim of keeping the traditions of Northwood Prep (hence choosing colours that complement our school blazer) whilst also finding ways to match with MTS. You will notice that we have renamed Junior School and Senior School, which will now be known (when we remember!) as the Pre-Prep and Prep departments. This is to avoid confusion between MTS and MTP, because MTS really is the Senior School.

Renovation work is progressing extremely well at the Manor of the Rose building at MTS. We are taking over the rest of the ground floor of the building so that we can house our Reception classrooms there in September. Reception children will have a lot more space as a result and the Pre-Prep department (Years 1 and 2) will have more room as well in utilising extra classrooms (we are not planning on having any extra children).  I would like to thank Nursery parents for being so accommodating in the change to parking arrangements this term –
we really do appreciate your support!

You will see later in this newsletter that we are eagerly anticipating a visit from Dan Freedman, author, next week. The boys will also be lucky enough to have a visit from Mark Foster next week. He is coming to talk about his swimming career and will tell us about his role in the upcoming Rio Olympics. We will have some photographs and information in the next newsletter.

Best wishes

Dr. Karen McNerney | Head of School

mvp mip
diary dates

Mon 09-May
Y5-Y8 Music Recital 0845
U11 & U13 SATIPS Ski Race 1000 at Hemel Hempstead
1st XI Cricket (RNCF CUP) v Aldwickbury (a) 14.15

Tue 10-May
U8AB Cricket v St Martin’s (h) 1415

Wed 11-May
Whole School Staff Meeting 0800 Theatre
Y1 &Y2 Wembley Visit
Y7& Y8 House Cricket Competition
Y5 & Y6 House Tennis at Northwood LTC 1145-1415

Thu 12-May
World Series Speaker Mark Foster 8 Times World Record Holder
U8AB v Thorpe House (h) 1415

Fri 13-May
Y5 & Y6 House Cricket Competition

Sat 14-May
U13 Belmont Cricket Tournament

Mon 16-May
Common Entrance 13 plus Mathematics Listening Examination
MTS Y7 Interviews
Y6 Roald Dahl Visit
Y3 & Y4 Music Recital 0845
1st & 2nd XI Cricket v Orley Farm (a) 1515

Tue 17-May
Common Entrance 13 plus French Listening & Speaking Examinations
U9AB Cricket v St Columba’s (Napsbury Park) 1430
‘Talking Teens’ Workshop for Parents 1900-2100

Wed 18-May
1st XI Cricket v Belmont Prep (h) 1430
2nd & 3rd XI Cricket v Belmont Prep (a) 1430

Thu 19-May
Y3 & Y4 House Cricket Competition

Fri 20-May
Y5 Mask Assembly 
U11AB v The Beacon U10AB (a) 1415
U11CD v The Beacon U10CD (h) 1415

Sat 21-May
“Aspire to Achieve” Parents’ Association Fundraising Event ‘The Oliver Bangham Hall’ 1930

Sun 22-May
U11 Stowe School Cricket Tournament All Day

Mon 23-May
1st & 3rd XI v John Lyon School  (h) 1415
2nd  XI v John Lyon School  (a) 1415

Tue 24-May
Y3-Y8 Senior School Examinations

Wed 25-May
Y3-Y8 Senior School Examinations
1st XI  Cricket v  Gayhurst  (a) 1400

Thu 26-May
Y3-Y8 Senior School Examinations
Y3 & Y4 York House Athletics Meeting (a) 1430
Y6-Y8 Summer Disco 1900-2130

Fri 27-May
Reception & Nursery Sports Day 0900-1030
Y1 & Y2 Sports Day 1100-1230
Parents’ Association Summer Market 0900 - 1230

Mon 30-May  -  Fri 03-Jun

Edward Lakey 8W3             Ariyen Patel 7J3

Sachin Patel 8J1, Toby Michaels 8W3

           Sachin Vyas 8L2
     HOUSE NEWS    
   We bid farewell to the Spring

Summer sports and weather have arrived at MTP as we bid winter and spring farewell. Unusually, we held last term’s Final Assembly at the start of this term with the whole of the Prep School back together again. Congratulations to Livingstone on the award of the House Cup and to Rayan Joshi 5L1 for the Watson Cup (most house points in the term). 3G won the Coronation Shield in Y3/4 (form with highest average number of house points) whilst W3 retained the Coronation Cup as top tutor group.

House Tennis begins this week with House Singing, Chess, Cricket, Table Tennis, Table Football (for the first time) and Sports Day Athletics to follow. The recent Wren Yard Sale was a great success and their staff and captains are applauded for their fundraising efforts. Thanks to parents and tutors alike for the recent Year 6/7 Tutorials and best wishes to all pupils as they prepare for their end of year exams in Week 6. Tutors are sharing revision skills and techniques with their tutees and are also supporting Year 7 boys as they prepare for next school interviews.

Heads of House

  Summer Term is officially under way!

Now the cricket whites have got their first grass stains we know that the Summer Term is officially under way! Sachin Patel 8J1 and Toby Michaels 8W3 (Captain & Vice Captain of Cricket) have both hit early fifties, while Ariyen Patel 7J3 bowled a hat trick against Aldenham. As we go to print, the first and eagerly awaited heat wave of the season is forecast for this weekend. With that in mind we would kindly remind parents to equip your sons with sunscreen and a named, refillable water bottle. A School cap for break and lunchtimes is also highly recommended.

We started the term with our Spring Term Final Assembly, rewarding boys for achievement in their academic studies, Sport, Music and Drama. We were delighted to award so many certificates to boys who managed an entire term without getting a single ‘Minute’, and likewise to our ‘Time Out Titans’ for always doing their homework.

This term we welcome Ms Cayli Marshall to our School and the Year 3/4 team as maternity cover for Mrs Nicholas. Ms Marshall will spend the coming weeks getting to know the boys and the School. Congratulations to the boys elected as Form Captains this term: 3G Ben Moore-Taylor/ Vivaan Verma, 3S Dhaya Thind/Kush Patel, 4G Shiv Mookerjee/Leo Osman & 4N Mark Humphrey/Varshan Sasikumar.

Last week we hosted e-Safety talks by Karl Hopwood for all the boys from Reception to Year 8. The content of these talks was a revelation to all the boys and a true life lesson. Mr Hopwood then addressed the Staff and interested parents later that evening.
On the subject of technology, can we remind all pupils and parents that MOBILE PHONES ARE NOT ALLOWED IN SCHOOL.
Boys that need them for travel must deposit them at the School Office on arrival.

At this time of year, we are mindful of our Year 8 pupils and our other leavers who are spending their last few weeks with us. We wish them the best possible Summer Term and many happy memories as they prepare themselves for school transfer.      


9= Yusuf Saleem 5J3 & Aaron Sohal 5L2
5= Raj Shah 7J1, Ahren Chadha 5J3, Arjun Obhrai 5L1 & Max Domb 5W3
4 Anish Bharadwaj 5W1
3 Munachi Nnatuanya 5L3
2 Rohan Shah 5W3 
1 Rayan Joshi 5L1

Mr M Hibbert | Mr A Crook | Mr Waddington




Ariyen Patel 7J3, Auke Veenendaal 7J1
Ahren Chadha 5J3, Raj Shah 7J1,
Daniel Rowlands 8J3, Rishil Sodha 8J1

Saamir Deen 3G, Zachary Jamal 4N,
Sahil P Shah 6L1, Willem Redman 8L1,
Vincent Cheung 3G, Mahana Al-Romaihi 3G, Thomas Treloar 6L2, Aran Joshi 5L3

Pahal Jariwala 7N2, Noah Moser 5N2,
Luka Hinton 5N2, Aayush Pandit 5N1,
Eshaan Patel 5N3, Kahil Jariwala 6N1

Niam Bhattacharya 7W2, Alexander Andelkovic 5W3, Om Chavda 6W3, Krishav Sehdev 5W2,
Kian Lalani 8W1, Anish Morjaria 8W2,
Lucas Johnson 8W1, Toby Michaels 8W3,
Joshua Michaels 8W2

   Welcome back for the Summer Term!

There was great excitement in Pre Prep at the arrival of our new playground apparatus! The boys have enjoyed challenging themselves on each of the different pieces of equipment and have had a huge amount of fun doing so. The photographs show George Davey and Pranav Lakhani from the Robins trying out the apparatus!

Years 1 and 2 have launched their topic of 1960s by studying the work of a variety of artists including Andy Warhol and Roy Liechtenstein. They have made their own representations of their work and are rightly very proud of their creations. The photographs show Hassan Shaikh, Arkansh Pandey, Joy Golwala and Raam Shah and Arvin Naraghi and Adam Gill showing their pictures in our Good Work Assembly. Next the boys will be finding out about sport in the 1960s and are looking forward to visiting Wembley Stadium on May 11th.
This term’s topic for Nursery and Reception is “Let’s Explore” and to support this we are delighted that we have managed to secure a visit to school from the Travelling Natural History Museum. The boys will be able to enjoy a range of activities and handle a variety of artefacts that would normally be exhibited in the Museum. I am sure I will have some wonderful photographs to include when I next write.

We are still collecting Sainsbury’s Active Kids vouchers so if you have any please send them into school.

Lastly, our Year 2 Choir performed magnificently at the Dedication of the Term service last Friday and I would like to thank the many boys and parents who supported this event.

Mrs S Funnell | Head of Pre Prep

    Nursery Life
  We ended the Spring Term on a high preparing for Easter in the Nursery. The boys thoroughly enjoyed making chocolate nests and displayed curiosity to explore what happened to the ingredients as they melted and mixed it all together. The photos show Eisa Nawaz and Ethan Dominique busy stirring the chocolate into their shredded wheat.

The boys enjoyed planting alliums and discovering what their seeds would become. They took these home as an Easter treat for their families. In the photo Aarav Kakaya is busy planting his bulb. One of the highlights of the week was exploring the Nursery garden for Easter eggs, followed by a surprise visit from the Easter bunny to read us a story. The photo shows Tristan Pulvar, who was very excited to have found his egg.
We rounded up the week with collaborative fun with all of Junior School when we went on a giant Easter Egg hunt in the school grounds.

This term we have started our topic ‘Let’s Explore!’ and the boys are thoroughly engaged in learning about dinosaurs. This week we were excited to get close up to a helicopter when it landed in the field next to Nursery in Merchant Taylors’ School grounds.  

Mrs G Ladbury| Head of Nursery

    Football author visit by Dan Freedman!

On Thursday 12th May Dan Freedman, bestselling author of the Jamie Johnson series, will be coming to meet the boys in Years 3-8. This will be an amazing experience for all his fans and this is a great opportunity for everyone to discover what inspired Dan to become an author and sports journalist.

Dan will be sharing his experiences of working with the England Team, travelling with them to two World Cups, as well as personally interviewing people such as Beckham, Ronaldo and Messi.  He aims to inspire everyone even more with reading and writing by sharing information about his exciting books as well as giving tips and ideas on how to be amazing authors too...if you go to Dan's website you may even have the opportunity to become published authors!

Dan's talk will be in the New Barn Theatre from 2.15-3.15. There will be a book signing session at the end of his visit. An order form will be sent home this week giving you the opportunity to pre-order your books at a discount and have them ready on the day for Dan to personally sign for you.

You can all look forward to seeing the Jamie Johnson stories coming to the screen too, as a new drama series based on the books will soon be broadcast on the BBC.

It should be a great afternoon!

Mrs S Smith | Learning Resources Manager

    Watford FC Easter Football Camp

Well done to all boys that took part in this years Watford FC Easter Football Camp. In what was another successful week, we had 61 boys ranging from Y1 – Y8 competing in fun competitions, skills practices and tournaments each day. The boys were even treated to a visit by players from the Watford U21 side and could pick their brains about life as a professional footballer. We would like to congratulate three boys that as a result of the course have now been offered places at the Watford FC Development Centre.
Well done to Noah Browne (Y1), Aman Rajdev (Y3) and Samuel Williams (Y3), and good luck with your training.

Mr J Denham & Mrs A Egan

   Successful April for MTP sports teams

A busy start to term has seen success in a number of sports across the school. Well done to our Ski Team that competed in an indoor competition in Hemel Hempstead Ski Centre, our Y8 Assault course team that completed the annual St John's Assault Course finishing a creditable 4th, our 1st – 4th Cricket teams on winning three out of four matches against MTP seniors, and all boys that have taken part in Cricket fixtures against other schools so far. A special mention must go to the newly formed RNCF cup (formerly JET) side, a combined team from Y7/8 boys from MTP and MTS seniors that won their first round tie away at Aldenham, Ariyen Patel with 5 wickets being MOM. The next round is on Monday 9th May away at Aldwickbury School. Good luck boys!

Mr J Denham | Sports Teacher

   Ski Visit Val Di Fiemme (March 19th-25th 2016)

An early 3:30am start for our first ever ski visit to the Italian Dolomites in the North of Italy. With a recent dump of snow the week ahead looked promising - and it didn't disappoint! The boys had a fantastic time skiing three different resorts during the week, all of them managing the timed slalom on the final day. In addition to the skiing, the snow park was a highlight for all with sledges, ski bikes and even a rubber ring to ride down the mountain on!

If 5 hours of skiing a day wasn't enough, the boys returned to the hotel to use the indoor heated pool, billiard room and their very own in-hotel cinema - not to mention the table tennis tables and common room. As you can see, there was always something to keep the boys busy.

Mr D Todd | Director of Sport

   Music Exam Results Congratulations boys
Mrs C Hawkes | Director of Music
   IT Safety Talk

Parent e-Safety sessions
· To consider what children and young people are really doing online as opposed to what they might say that they are doing.
· To explore some of the risks and benefits of using the internet and online communications.
· To provide some possible solutions.
This is about education, not simply blocking and banning children from the internet. Blocking worked a few years ago, but now young people all have mobile devices which allow them to access the internet wherever and whenever they want to and so they need to know how to protect themselves when things go wrong. Of course there is a place for some blocking – as parents we are co nfident and comfortable in doing this for the offline aspects of our children’s lives, we should also feel confident to do this with the online aspects too. It is clearly inappropriate for children to access adult content/pornography and we can take steps to block this as parents. More information can be found at e-safety covers a wide range of issues from inappropriate content to cyberbullying, paedophiles, identity theft and validity and bias.

A classification of online opportunities and risks for children and young people1
At first sight, the list of risks can seem quite daunting, but closer examination reveals that many of the risks cited are concerns that have existed for generations. For example tracking is mentioned and of course this is a concern, we also talk about stalking which is something that happens in the off-line world as well. Unfortunately, pornographic and harmful sexual content has always existed; the internet simply provides an easier means of accessing this material as the perceived anonymity it affords means that children and young people are much more likely to take risks and attempt to access such material believing that they will never be discovered.

Despite the fact that many of these risks have always existed, the internet brings with it a couple of issues which mean that children and young people can be particularly vulnerable.

1. Children and young people tend to use the internet (at least initially) in places where they feel very safe. This is because we tell them that they are safe and want them to feel that way. Home and school are places that we need children to feel safe and secure in and staff and parents work hard to ensure that this is the case. However, in doing so, we encourage children to approach their use of the internet with a false sense of security. In their eyes, nothing can go wrong – because they are in that safe place. This is highlighted by the comment below:
“How can we come to any harm when we are sitting at home, nothing really            bad can happen.” – Girl 15,2

2.We know from scientific research, that children’s capacity to understand risk develops after adolescence because the parts of the brain that govern risk are not fully functioning until this time. This means that children don’t have the same appreciation of risk as adults – this is actually a good thing in some respects as without this, children and young people would not take the risk to tell their first lie
of consequence, or do their first noble thing. Indeed, it is only their inability to appreciate and understand risk that allows them to do those things that we as adults consider to be both incredibly brave and foolish, the things that really characterise adolescence, the series of really dangerous decisions that you have to make to become an adult.
These two factors taken together can form a potentially toxic mix, meaning that some children and young people will take real risks without any thought for future consequences.
1 Livingstone, S and Haddon, L (2009) EU Kids Online: Final report. LSE, London: EU Kids Online. (EC Safer Internet Plus Programme
Deliverable D6.5)
2 From Ofcom – Social Networking: A quantitative and qualitative research report into attitudes, behaviours and use (April 2008)
It is important to remember at this point that we were all children once, we all did the foolish things, the difference – and it is a crucially important one – is that our foolish activities were not permanently recorded.
Consequently, informing children about risk involves

- Frequent reinforcement – which means both at home and at school - Providing children with examples
- things from their real life that actually mean something to them.

We must infuse children with the media literacy that helps them to understand about the immortality of the information that they put up online. This is vitally important. The way to do this is NOT to say don’t use this, but to say for example, “look at how this rumour
flooded through the network”. Encourage children and young people to carry out the experiment for themselves. When they have witnessed the speed and diffusion of how something goes through a social network they will be much more likely to think twice about
what they post. There are many examples in the media which we can use to initiate discussions with our children – they will have an opinion and are more likely to consider some of the issues if we share some of these stories with them and ask them what they
think. (Two examples can be found below).

Paris Brown: and
Tom Daley:

How can we best protect children and young people?
The most effective way to keep children and young people safe online is to ensure that theyhave someone that they trust who they can talk to if something goes wrong. Education and empowerment are much more powerful tools than blocking, banning and monitoring. We spend a lot of time telling children and young people how important their privacy is and what they must do in order to protect it. We do this for a number of good reasons; one is that there is a small risk that they could be groomed by a predator, but more importantly, because the internet will never forget. It is appropriate then that we sit down with our children and point out that the photo they post when they are 15 or 16 of them half dressed, smoking a cigarette and drinking will indeed come back and haunt them when they are 35 or 36 and they will wish they had never posted it. However, at the same time as telling them this, we also put our children in situations where everything that they do at school and at home is being watched, monitored and processed. The information that is gathered is then used as ammunition for us to tell our children that they have done something wrong – they have been caught.

Children understand that actions speak louder than words – so when we monitor a child for every second that they are online, and then turn around to them and say that privacy is important and they must protect it, they understand that we’re not really serious about this.
When we tell them to protect their personal information and not give it out, but also that if they take steps to hide that information from us (e.g. by using a proxy server and so bypassing the school’s “safe” internet connection which will probably be filtered), then they
will be in a world of trouble, children and young people then understand that we’re not really serious about this whole not disclosing information business. We are training children not to value their privacy by relying too heavily on monitoring software and surveillance in
schools. If we really want to keep children safe on the internet, we need to start equipping them with the tools to understand when they’re being monitored. Children are infinitely resourceful, monitoring and filtering will not always stop them from accessing what they
want to access, but it could stop them from working with us to become better online citizens.

Digital Distraction
Now that many of us are connected to the internet almost 24/7 there is an inevitable risk of digital overload. In 2015 the Internet Keep Safe Coalition (iKeepSafe), published some research which found that managing distractions is a universal challenge for both adults and young people alike.
·      44% of teens admitted that they do not get enough sleep because of digital devices.
·     25% of adults admitted that they do not get enough sleep because of digital devices.
·     40% of teens do not complete homework because of time spent with digital devices.
·     37% of teens admitted that their devices interfere with normal day to day activities.
·     30% of adults admitted that their devices interfere with normal day to day activities.

Useful websites:
Digital distraction toolkit - Parent sessions January 2016

Mrs B Hibbert | Head of ICT

   Busy Term

Merchant Taylors’ Science Challenge
Four Year 5 boys, Rohan Olsen, Aryan Sodha, Luka Hinton and Munachi Nnatuanya, were selected to take part in the Merchant Taylors’ Science challenge on April 29th.  The boys had a fantastic time competing in all three challenges in Biology, Chemistry and Physics and using the practical skills that they have developed this year. 

Miss C Burke | KS2 Science Teacher

     Pupil of the Month

Year 4 – Leo Osman for sustained effort
Year 5 – Yusuf Saleem for continued effort and enthusiasm
Year 6 – Charlie Marshall for excellent effort and achievement

Miss C Burke | KS2 Science Teacher

Art Club work

Mr D Roach | Head of Art and Design
   D-37 to Normandy!

With just over a month to go before the Year 6 Visit to Normandy, here are a few pictures that encapsulate the best moments of last year’s visit...

Mr R Kopel | Head of MFL