The life of St Agatha’s School is centred on our Catholic faith, in which we proclaim the Gospel values such as love, peace and justice, which influence all our activities and relationships.
We value and encourage the uniqueness of each child and recognise that everyone has a positive contribution to make to the life of the school community.
We value worshipping and celebrating together, sharing our Christian witness and building upon the foundations already established at home where parents are the first educators of their children.
We aim to:
- Encourage the spiritual development and prayer life of each child and help them to develop their relationship with God
- Offer a place where differences and problems are talked through and prayed through together and where success is shared and celebrated
- Provide a secure and happy environment where quality teaching and learning can take place
- Deliver a curriculum that meets the intellectual, physical and creative needs of each child as well as delivering spiritual, emotional and pastoral care
- Foster respect for, and recognise the rights of, others regardless of gender, race or ability and to offer equal opportunities to all
- Value the contribution of home, school, parish, community and diocese in our daily lives
WHAT WE ARE IS GOD'S GIFT TO US
WHAT WE BECOME IS OUR GIFT TO GOD
Reflecting on School Values
We would all agree that we want out children to grow up with good values, morals, and ethics. We also know that values need to be both modelled to children and taught explicitly. Throughout this school year we will be spending time thinking carefully about the values that are important to us at St Agatha's School.
Please see below to find out more about the values that the children will be exploring each month.
|July - Justice|
|Understanding the concept of fairness is important for young people. From an early age, we begin to develop opinions about what is fair and what is not. How many times have we heard a toddler shouting, “that’s not fair” when they don’t get their way? As we get older, our perceptions of fairness change, but they continue to be based on personal perception. This creates many teachable moments for children. What is fair to one child may seem unfair to another and what seems unfair to many, may offer opportunities to create school-wide, local or national change. It is important to teach children from a young age the importance of fairness in applying rules and laws, fighting for changes in rules, laws and behaviour and treating others with respect and tolerance at all times.|
|June - Love|
|“Let us not love in word or speech but with actions and in truth” – 1 John 3:18
The most important value you can teach your child is love. If a child learns how to give and receive love from an early age then all of the other values will fall into place. All living things require love to survive, including us. First, we must learn to love ourselves in order to develop self-esteem and self-respect. Then we can love others as we become caring, compassionate, thoughtful and kind.
As we all continue to find a way through these challenging times, we must look for opportunities to demonstrate hope and love to those around us through our daily actions.
|May - Family|
|“Family” is a bond, a long-lasting relationship that holds its members together with the thread of love. Bonding does not happen overnight. Every second, every minute that you spend with your family, bonds you to them. It is through family that we learn the values of love, trust, hope, belief, culture, morals, tradition and every little matter that concerns us and the society in which we live. Children need to learn the importance of family and how family helps in building a strong future. Children depend on parents and family to protect them and provide for their needs.
Parents and family form a child’s first relationship helping them to grow into strong, mature, balanced and caring individuals who are very relevant and much needed in society and the world today.
During the month of May, we ask you to explore the different ‘family’ groups to which we all belong and reflect on what we can learn from those families and how we can contribute as individuals to the benefit of all.
|March - Perseverance|
|Perseverance is the ability to work through challenges. Having perseverance means that when you face a challenge, you use your mind and your body to overcome it. It is important to realise however, that the definition of perseverance is not “don’t give up no matter what” or “never quit. Instead, perseverance is the ability to do our best toward a goal, even though it may be a big challenge.
During March, we will be exploring this concept of perseverance with the children and helping them to relate it to their own experiences.
|February - Trust|
|Trust is an essential value. Children need to know they can depend on adults to care for them and supply their basic needs. Trust is fundamental to their development into healthy human beings. When children can trust others, they develop a positive attitude toward life and have less need to be in control to make things turn out right.
During February, we will talk with the children about the value of trust, what it means to be trustworthy and the qualities a trustworthy person displays.
|January - Curiosity|
|The world of a young child is full of new foods to taste, new people to meet, new games to play, words to understand, places to visit, and concepts to master. A very young child will touch, taste, smell, climb over, poke at, take apart, watch, listen, and learn more than at any other time in life. It is, simply, how we learn.
Curiosity grows from the safe and familiar. A secure child with a familiar adult will be excited by the world around them. They will explore and ask dozens of questions. In contrast, an insecure child might quietly tolerate their surroundings and feel mostly discomfort.
In safe and familiar settings, we seek novelty. When we feel overwhelmed, we seek familiarity. The challenge is that learning opportunities must be safe and familiar as well as novel and stimulating. Shared discovery gives the greatest pleasure. The curious child will want to share his/her discovery with an adult. The attention, smile and shared joy shown, will provide a powerful reward to the child. This is an important part of the cycle of learning. During January, we will be asking the children to explore an aspect of the world about which they are curious and to share their learning with others.
|December - Kindness|
|We have all experienced kindness; we know how important it is. But, there is more than just anecdotal evidence to support that kindness is important. Scientific studies have shown that performing random acts of kindness is good for our health. They improve our life satisfaction by increasing our sense of belonging and self-worth, and they improve our health by decreasing negative feelings. Also, these benefits apply to the giver of kindness, the recipient of kindness, and anyone who witnesses the act! So, every act of kindness improves the lives of at least three people! The more we give or treat people kindly, the more we inspire others to give and practise kindness. Kindness has been defined for children as being friendly, generous or considerate to them self and others through their words and actions. Small gestures make a big difference such as holding a door open for someone or giving up a seat on a bus.
During December, I will be asking the whole school community to join in with modelling and practising kindness in interactions with each other and complimenting acts of kindness that they witness.
November - Honour
When we think about honour, we can easily restrict our thinking to respectful behaviour; being polite, courteous, and having good manners. This however, is a rather narrow understanding and is only a small part of what honour actually is. Honour comes when you recognise a person's worth or value – it comes from the heart. Respect acknowledges a person's position, while honour attaches worth to that person.
|October - Citizenship|
|Studying ‘Citizenship’ helps children's social development enabling them to engage with others, to develop understanding of their communities and provides opportunities for responsible and active citizenship. Advocating the five themes of citizenship - honesty, compassion, respect, responsibility and courage - is not enough. Exploring those themes, talking about them, and making connections between those themes and children’s lives are the keys to developing a true understanding of the concepts.
During October, we will explore the value of good citizenship through class discussions and role play.
|September - Ambition|
Ambition is the strong wish to achieve something. It requires self-belief, determination and an ability to learn from mistakes. Thomas Edison, the inventor of the light bulb, failed many times before he developed a light bulb that actually worked. His famous line, "I have not failed, I've just found 10,000 ways that won't work," is a saying used today to illustrate that failure is part of the learning process. There are many ways that we can nurture ambition in children. During September, we will be considering the concept of ‘ambition’ and asking the children to reflect on their own ambitions and the steps to take in order to realise those ambitions.