his-master-voiceHeadmaster’s Voice

Finding the right balance between technological and traditional methods of teaching and learning is crucial for both school and home.

At Stoneygate this week I’ve enjoyed working with pupils from Years 2, 3 & 5 on the Ipads.  Their creative minds mixed with intuitive technology means we can sharpen our analytical skills and create stories within minutes.  Does this herald the end for books?  Absolutely not.

On Tuesday, Mrs Stocks led a wonderful assembly on the importance of reading.  She also highlighted some of the writing competitions some of our pupils will be entering.

We know stories can inspire, increase vocabulary, expand imagination, improve memory…they can also reduce stress.  Do listen to Tom Hardy below and tell me if you don’t feel better having listened to this story.

There have been many outstanding performances in sport this week:

In hockey, well done to all who played in either the Stamford or LGS tournaments- at Stamford the U10A team won all their matches playing against Laxton, Copthill, Stamford, Brooke Priory & drew against Grantham.  The U13 girls at LGS drew against Welland Park A, beat Welland Park B, beat LGS B, & lost against LGS A.

Player of the week in hockey: Imara for her ball control and setting up many of the goals scored in the Stamford hockey tournament.

In rugby, the U13’s drew against Oundle (40-40), the U11’s played in the Stamford Rugby tournament, the U10s A& B played against Fairfield (the A’s won, the B’s had an epic 50-50 tie) and the U9’s A&B played at Maidwell. (For more details view the SOCS website).

Player of the week in rugby: George T (Y6) for some superb tackling in the Stamford tournament.  Champagne moment however must go to Ben in Y7, who having just joined the school, in the first minutes of his first match, caught the ball and scored a try!


Well done Ben!

On Thursday I spoke to the pupils about the following two people…hopefully they will know the difference (and similarities) between the two!

It was agreed these two men…did have something to moan about; whereas we are very lucky.

Enjoy the weekend and I look forward to seeing you either at the ‘Welcome Back Evening’ on Monday night or the ‘Careers Convention’ (Years 7-9) on Tuesday night.

Mr J Dobson




his-master-voiceHeadmaster’s Voice

Lots of schools talk about their ‘holistic approach’ to education…but there are few prep schools who can demonstrate it so well in the first full week back as Stoneygate.

Staff are encouraged to think of new initiatives and to implement them.  I was delighted to see so many pupils (and parents) at our inaugural early morning run this week.  It was a truly invigorating start to the day…with everyone enjoying the run in the morning sunshine.  Congratulations must also go to our U11 rugby and hockey squads who performed well at Laxton Junior school this week.


Mrs Ashwin delivered an inspirational assembly this week on how music can actually make you smarter.  Despite the obvious bias, Mrs Ashwin showed pupils how music can not only help with your creative thinking, but also numeracy and even sport.


I really should play the clarinet more often….

This week we also celebrated some outstanding work done over the holidays.  Four pupils gained the ‘Headmaster’s Award’:

Louie’s (Y5) summer project work on a trip to Italy, complete with a parody of ‘diary of a wimpy kid’:


Some of our GATE pupils produced some imaginative work based on the theme ‘the Journey’: Evie (Y7) chose to paint a gruelling part of the ‘Tour de France’, Mount Ventoux- a difficult journey for many cyclists. Joanna (Y7) pieced together her grandmother’s journey through the 1930s- 1960s.  Alice (Y6) created a family tree, charting her family’s ‘ journey’.




From exploratory walks in Year 2, to Science experiments in Year 5, to  creative work with textiles in Year 9. ..pupils (and parents) are getting into the routine of our holistic approach to education at Stoneygate.

Have a good weekend,

Mr J F Dobson


Bunsen Burners on!

Year 6 were delighted to kick off the new term by getting to light their own Bunsen burners and heat up some water to boiling. Goggles on everyone! Here are Garv, Charlie and Tom recording the temperature of their ever rising water temperature. We found that, despite Mrs Angell offering a thousand pounds to anyone who could get their thermometer up to the very top, we just couldn’t make water go higher than 100C. Phew!

Stoneygate School Auction – Sam Sananes Legacy

I would just like to say a huge thank you to everyone who attended the school ball and those who supported the Boost charity through the auction and the raffle.

A special thank you to Paul Nixon for being an amazing auctioneer on the night and to the ladies of the SSA who went above and beyond.

Sam was at Stoneygate School from 1985 to 1991 and he loved every minute of it.

I wanted to let you know a little bit of the legacy, which the Boost charity has set up in his name.

The Sam Sananes Legacy was established in May 2017 following Sam’s untimely death at the age of 39 years. Grants awarded out of the Legacy funds are intended to have regard to Sam’s own sporting interests and, where appropriate, his home town of Leicester and his support for the disadvantaged and disabled, especially sufferers of Muscular Dystrophy.

Fundraising so far has included:-

  • The London to Brighton 100km challenge run
  • Climbing Ben Nevis
  • Climbing Mount Fuji
  • Further challenges are being planned

An example of an award already given:

  • Stephen McGuire – Boccia

A small award of £400 has been given to Stephen who suffers from Muscular Dystrophy. Stephen lives in South Lanarkshire and plays Boccia. The award, which has been channelled through his club, is for a new set of balls. Stephen writes ‘’Through the sport of Boccia, I have been able to train weekly which has helped to keep my condition as stable as possible. It has slowed down the deterioration and for this I am forever thankful.’’


 Future awards include: 

  • Level Water – Disability Swimming The Trustees have approved a £5,000 award out of Sam’s Legacy for the setting up of a swimming lesson programme for disabled children in Leicester. The programme follows previous successes by Level Water ( elsewhere in the UK. The anticipated outcomes are:
  • 20 disabled children will learn to swim.
  • 90% of these children will go on to swim in group lessons.
  • Ten swimming teachers will each attend two disability teaching workshops. 


  • Belvoir Cricket

An award of £5,000 has been approved by the Trustees to contribute toward the Belvoir Cricket & Countryside Trust (, which, in 2016, reached 462 children with learning and physical difficulties. Darren Bicknell, former Surrey and Nottinghamshire cricketer is the chief executive. Their special needs schools programme comprises:

  • A 6 weeks programme of Kwik and Table Cricket.
  • A Table Cricket tournament run in conjunction with Nottingham CCC.
  • A Cricket & Countryside Education Day comprising Kwik Cricket, fishing, meeting working dogs, a hands-on birds of prey experience and a walk exploring the castle gardens.
  • They expect 500 youngsters to participate next year.


  • Nic Cummings – Wheelchair Rugby

Boost has been a significant supporter of GB Wheelchair Rugby for over 10 years. Indeed, Kevin Aitchison, a former colleague of Sam’s at B,H&S/ING, is the chairman of their trustee body. For the London and Rio cycles they received both Sport England (grassroots) and UK Sport (elite) funding. However, for this 2017-21 Tokyo round they have been unsuccessful with their bid for UK Sport funding. This means that the £12,000 that each of the twelve elite players has been receiving has now ceased.

David Pond, the chief executive of GBWR, says… ‘’With the stoppage of this award, a number of the athletes will have serious welfare and financial issues unless we can find funding to help the most in need. Nic Cummins is one such athlete.’’

Nic has been in the GB squad since 2014 but narrowly missed out on the final selection for Rio. He plays for the Leicester Tigers Wheelchair Rugby Club.

Boost’s Trustees have agreed to granting an award of £3,000 from the Legacy pool, which should meet Nic’s travel and equipment maintenance costs. The funding will be managed through the GBWR executive on Nic’s behalf.


Thank you to everybody

Rachel Harris (Sam’s Sister)