2016-17 News Gallery


Elements meet their Buddies

Thursday 8th September 2016


Reception's First Days

First Buddy Lunch

Friday 16th September


Opening of the St Nicholas Owen Building

Wednesday 21st September
Many thanks to all our families for your continued support and encouragement during the last 18 months of building works.  Although some works still remain, the St Nicholas Owen Building was officially opened on Wednesday 21st September by Bishop Nicholas Hudson, Auxiliary Bishop of Westminster and old boy of Donhead.  I am grateful to those families who have commented so favourably on our new facilities and, of course, my hope is that they will further help every boy here to become the best that they can be.

PP1 Outing to Legoland

Thursday 22nd September

PP2 Outing to Wagamama

Thursday 22nd September

PP1 Walk on Wimbledon Common

Monday 3rd October
PP1 enjoyed a walk around Wimbledon Common on Monday afternoon, as part of their Geography Topic ‘The Local Area’. As well as familiarising themselves with local roads and key features we enjoyed the beautiful Autumn sunshine, collecting conkers and an iced lolly!

LP1 Visit the Bookfest Big Tent

Tuesday 4th October
LP1 enjoyed their visit to the Wimbledon Bookfest event at the Big Tent on Wimbledon Common. The boys listened to an interesting talk by AF Harrold, author of the Fizzlebert Stump series.

Lower Prep Michaelmas Term Concert

Tuesday 4th October
Congratulations to those boys in LP1 and LP2 who performed so well at this term’s Concert for Solo Instrumentalists. It was the first time some of the soloists had ever played in front of an audience and they certainly did themselves proud!

U10 Rugby Triangular

Tuesday 4th October

LP2 Outing to the Natural History Museum

Wednesday 5th October

LP1 Visit Butser Ancient Farm

Friday 7th October
LP1 visited Butser Farm, a reconstruction of a Celtic Hillfort. We were able to try our hand at archaeology and compare life in a Celtic roundhouse with life in a Roman villa. We smashed chalk to make clunch and helped to build a wall. We also made clay pots which we were able to bring back to school. It was a fascinating and informative day!

PP2 Making Guacamole

Thursday 13th October
To link with their Mexico Topic, PP2F had lots of fun making guacamole and tasting it! To link with our Literacy work on Instructions, they used 'bossy verbs' to write instructions on how to make it.  Well done, boys.

LP1 (U8) Football vs. King's College Junior School

Monday 10th October

Michaelmas Term Ensemble Concert

Monday 17th October
Congratulations to all of the participants in the Prep School Ensembles Concert with Prep and Elements soloists. The Senior Choir, Brass Band, Guitar Group, the Donhead Trio and the Orchestra were so excited to be performing in the superb new Auditorium. The boys delighted the audience with such a varied programme (including a specially arranged version of the theme from Wallace and Gromit by our Brass teacher, Mr Mankarious) and the Elements and Prep soloists gave some outstanding performances.


Elements Healthy Snacks

Monday 17th October

Ignite! Conference

Monday 17th & Tuesday 18th October
Donhead was pleased to host the wonderful 'Ignite!' Conference for the boys and girls from six Jesuit Schools this week.  The purpose of the Conference was for the schools to learn a little bit more about each other and to explore how they could further develop their way of working as a Jesuit school.  Thank you to our chaplain, Eileen Groenen, for organising the conference, Fr Paul Fletcher SJ for saying Mass in our new Chapel and the three former Donhead pupils (now at Wimbledon College) for helping out at the Conference. Semper Magis.

LP2 visit Hampton Court

Tuesday 18th October
LP2 enjoyed their visit to Hampton Court Palace on Tuesday. Whilst there, the boys had fun taking part in a workshop entitled ‘Playing the King’. Henry VIII wasn’t always a fat, old tyrant! Their drama session challenged the traditional stereotype of this iconic monarch, plotting his life from his early reign through to his final years as king.  The boys also visited the Tudor Kitchens, where a costumed presenter shared with them how foods were stored, prepared, cooked and eaten at the palace in Henry VIII's time.  They inspected the cooking utensils and some boys experienced the role of 'spit boy'!

Prep Year Outing to Greenwich

Wednesday 19th October
The day began with a visit to the Great Map in the National Maritime Museum, where the boys explored the continents using the ipads to discover the world and answer questions. The boys enjoyed all that the museum had to offer, including the ship simulator and the ‘All hands children’s gallery,’ where they could explore maritime skills and technologies past and present, fire a cannon and shoot down a dastardly pirate ship in a brilliant interactive game. After lunch the boys enjoyed a workshop at the Cutty Sark where they discovered what life was like on board the real Cutty Sark, the world’s sole surviving tea clipper, and fastest ship of her time. The weather was good and the boys thoroughly enjoyed their day out in Greenwich.

LP1 House Cross-Country and Football

Wednesday 19th October


LP1 Roman Drama Workshop: 'The Wall'

Tuesday 1st November
The Hobgoblin Theatre Company visited Donhead on Tuesday to perform ‘The Wall’ - a play about
the life of Roman soldiers at Hadrian’s Wall. The boys enjoyed the play (which follows the History curriculum for LP1 this term) and were enthusiastic participants in the drama workshop that followed.

Fireworks Night

Thursday 3rd November
Thank you to all who attended this year's Fireworks Night and we hope everyone had a great time! Thanks also to all the class reps and volunteers for their help, with particular mention to Shakeel Khan for his amazing BBQ skills, and to both Kevin McArthur and Paula Turnbull for leading this event. Our appreciation also goes Coombe Residential for their continued sponsorship of this wonderful evening!


Mexican Masks by PP2

Friday 4th November
PP2 had fun making some colourful masks inspired by a festival celebrated in Mexico City. They designed and painted their masks during their Art lessons.


Buddies' ICT Presentations

Friday 11th November

PP2 Dinosaur Workshop

Tuesday 15th November
PP2 enjoyed a workshop from the Education Group. They looked at fossils from the different periods and pretended they were Palaeontologists for the day. They investigated carnivores and herbivore fossils.  The boys even looked at some fossils that were 400 million years old! They had a great morning exploring!

History Competition Winners

Tuesday 22nd November
"The Elements winners of the ‘Carton de Wiart History Competition 2016’ attended a fun-filled Presentation Day and Workshop at The Oratory School in Reading on Tuesday. They explored different perceptions of the ‘hero’ in a History workshop and worked in teams to complete a challenging quiz! The boys were also given the opportunity to sample the sport of kings, and took part in a ‘Real Tennis’ taster session. Their day ended with a Presentation Ceremony to celebrate all of their efforts where they were treated to lots of goodies! Congratulations to the boys who were awarded 1st place, 3rd place and two who were awarded Highly Commended certificates. Our thanks go to Marcus Fec and the rest of the History Department at The Oratory, for organising such a wonderful day for us all."
Miss Adelise Easter, History Subject Leader


Wind in the Willows

Tuesday 22nd November
Image Musical Theatre visited Donhead and put on a wonderful performance of 'Wind in the Willows' for the whole school.


PP2 Nativity Plays

Monday 5th, Tuesday 6th & Thursday 8th December
All three PP2 classes really enjoyed independently performing the Nativity show ‘Stargazers’ in our brand new theatre this week. Special thanks to Mr Curtis (light and sound), Mr Reid (staging) and parents for helping with costumes. Great work, boys!


Reception Nativity Play

Tuesday 6th December
"A Miracle in Town"

Xavier House Tea

Tuesday 6th December
Congratulations to the boys in Xavier House, who won the coupon count-up this term and celebrated with the traditional House Tea in the Refectory!

PP2 visit the Natural History Museum

Wednesday 7th December
PP2 had a wonderful trip to the Natural History Museum and were able to learn more about dinosaurs and fossils. The trip into London on a brand new double decker coach and seeing the Christmas lights en route were also highlights of their day.

Buddies Exchange Christmas Gifts

Thursday 8th December

Christmas Jumper Day

Friday 9th December
Today we had Christmas Jumper Day in aid of Save the Children. The boys thoroughly enjoyed themselves. Mrs Clark thanks all the boys and staff for taking part and the parents for their support in this cause.

Festival of Carols & Christmas Readings

Tuesday 13th December
Donhead's Festival of Carols and Christmas Readings marks the beginning of the Christmas season for many of the families and friends of the school community. The readers and lantern bearers so enjoyed being part of the occasion, and the Donhead choirboys sang so beautifully. Well done to all of those who worked so hard in making this such a memorable evening.

PP2 Lighthouses

Tuesday 13th December
The boys in PP2 learned about circuits in Science and then built model lighthouses in DT.

PP2 'Isle of Struay Drama Workshop'

Tuesday 17th January
PP2 had the opportunity to ‘fly’ all the way to ‘The Isle of Struay’ based on the Scottish island Coll. They met the characters from Katie Morag’s books and went on a journey around the island. They learnt all about their family and way of life when living on an island in Scotland. They even enjoyed a Scottish dance!

LP2 visit the Geffrye Museum

Wednesday 18th January

Junior Schools Orchestral Play Day

Thursday 26th January
Some of our Donhead instrumentalists attended the St John’s, Leatherhead Orchestral Play Day today. Twelve schools sent over 150 instrumentalists to the event, which included an afternoon of rehearsals and culminated in a short evening concert for parents. The boys thoroughly enjoyed learning five new pieces including the ‘Hallelujah Chorus’ from Handel’s Messiah, ‘Can you Feel the Love Tonight?’ from the Lion King and the theme from ‘Chariots of Fire’ by Vangelis. What a fantastic experience it was for all involved!

History Day

Monday 30th January
The boys enjoyed a fun-filled day stepping back in time. Each year group explored a different period of history and created some wonderful projects around these topics. The boys also enjoyed a comedy performance of, ‘The Unusual Adventures of Robin Hood,’ by the Hobgoblin Theatre Company. LP1 put their enquiry skills to the test in an Ancient Maya workshop with renowned archaeologist, Dr Diane Davies. The day was rounded up with a prize for the best-dressed in each class! Thank you to all staff who got involved and to the boys for their enthusiasm and fantastic costumes - we even had a rat visit us from the Black Death!

LP1 and Prep Year Concert

Monday 30 January
Congratulations to the boys who performed in the Lower Prep and Prep Year Solo Instrumental and Vocal Concert. The audience was treated to a wide range of pieces and there were many fine performances. Well done boys, for all the hard work you put into preparing for your performances – we look forward to hearing you at the next concert!


Elements visit the Imperial War Museum

Thursday 2nd February
Elements enjoyed their visit to the Imperial War Museum on Thursday. One group of boys met a wonderful gentleman from Leeds who was also visiting the museum. Jack was looking at a bomber plane, a type he had worked on as an engineer in WWII, and he shared stories with the boys about his experiences in the war. They were all delighted, and moved, to meet such a hero.

Fibonacci Work

Friday 3rd February
Last week, Elements boys completed a project on Leonardo Fibonacci, one of the most famous names in Mathematics. Using the Fibonacci sequence as a starting point, we explored Fibonacci’s life and his other important achievements, notably the introduction of Arabic numbers to Europe, thus saving Donhead boys from having to do long multiplication with Roman numerals. The boys were very enthusiastic about the project and some of their personal response work can be seen at the bottom of the main staircase, although not the Fibonacci cakes... we ate them!

Pre-Prep Lent Term Concert

Wednesday 8th February
This term’s Pre-Prep Concert was a great success with many of the boys performing for the first time. The Pre-Prep Choir members sang some delightful items, with their favourite being ‘The (Egyptian) Mummy Song’. The solo instrumentalists had all worked very hard and their performances were enthusiastically received in the wonderful Auditorium.

PP2 Investigate Friction

PP2 had lot of fun exploring forces with toy cars. They tested them on different surfaces, including our new polished concrete floors, and learned about friction. They also made predictions and designed experiments involving cars and ramps. Well done, boys!  

LP1 'Ali Baba & the Bongo Bandits'

Thursday 9th February
Well done to LP1 for a fantastic production of Ali Baba and the Bongo Bandits, performed in the Auditorium last night. The boys were exceptionally well prepared and their acting talent and sheer enthusiasm for performing was clear for all to see. Thank you to Miss Easter, Mrs McGrath, Mrs Murtagh, Mrs Earle, Mr Curtis and anyone else who had a hand in producing such a great show. Well done everyone!

Google Expeditions Pioneer Programme

Monday 20th February
On Monday the boys in the Prep School had a great day journeying to the top of the New York City skyscrapers, into the sea off the Galapagos Islands, around the circulatory system, down the oesophagus and into the stomach, before jetting off to the Sun!  They had great fun on their virtual school trips with Google Expeditions. You can find out more information about Google Expeditions at www.google.co.uk/edu/expeditions/#about

PP2 Outing to the Museum of London

Wednesday 22nd February
PP2 visited the London Museum to discover how people lived in London during the Stone Age times. The boys investigated the different artefacts and sketched things they found interesting around the various exhibits.  Boys explored in their groups and asked some great questions about Stone Age life. They have also brainstormed questions they would like to find out in their up and coming topic!

Donhead Book Character Day

Monday 27th February
Monday was the highlight of Donhead Book Week when the whole school, staff included, dressed up as characters from fiction. We had a wonderful assembly where each year group danced and paraded their costumes. The mix of fictional characters resulted in some extraordinary scenes during the day: Gandalf (teacher) chatting to Frankenstein; stick men and a parrot struggling to walk around the school; Fantastic Mr Fox playing football with a Cat in the Hat and several pirates; Sherlock Holmes sharing lunch with the Mad Hatter… A fantastic day in both senses of the word! Thank you to all the boys who put so much effort into their costumes, and to all the staff for being such good sports.

LP1 visit to Winchester Cathedral

Friday 3rd March
The tour of Winchester Cathedral was fascinating and LP1 learned much about its Anglo-Saxon origins and its colourful history.   There was time for quiet reflection and the opportunity to stand at the grave of Jane Austen.  During the Anglo-Saxon workshops, the boys dressed as Monks and learned about the daily routines of the Monks who lived there one thousand years ago. They also practised illuminated writing and made brooches. Thank you to Cheryl Bryan, the Education Officer at Winchester Cathedral, for organising such a wonderful experience for the boys in LP1.

Lent Term Ensembles Concert

Monday 6th March
Congratulations to all of the sixty performers at this term's Prep School Ensembles Concert. In addition to the Senior Choir, Orchestra, Brass Band, Guitar Group and Donhead Trio performing, talented soloists from Elements performed a varied programme, including Bach and Haydn along with a jazz item. The Senior Choir entertained with songs accompanied by dance moves. All the performances were very well received by an appreciative audience.

St John's Choral Workshop & Evensong

Tuesday 14 March
On Tuesday, the Donhead Choir took part in a Choral Workshop and Evensong at St John’s, Leatherhead. The choir had been learning the music for the event for the entire term and our choristers were very excited to finally sing it as members of a full SATB (soprano, alto, tenor, bass) choir to the accompaniment of a fine organ and in such a beautiful chapel. They sang with great enthusiasm and were a great credit to Donhead. Special thanks goes to St John’s who certainly looked after our boys well - the wonderful food was a definite hit!

Lent Term Informal Concert

Wednesday 15 March
Congratulations to all of the performers at Wednesday’s Informal Lunchtime Concert in the Auditorium. It was the first time that many of the players had performed and it was an ideal opportunity for them to share their musical talents. All their performances were very well received by a most appreciative audience.

Reception Outing to the Discovery Centre

Tuesday 21st March

The Great Donhead Bake Off

Wednesday 22nd March
A huge thank you to all the boys, parents and staff who took up the challenge of baking for the Great Donhead Bake Off in aid of Comic Relief and other charities.  We raised £537.22 from the after school cake sale. Thank you!

Reception F Football Fixture vs Squirrels

Thursday 23rd March

French Day

Thursday 23rd March
The theme of 'Le Français dans le Monde' was set for our French Day and the boys turned up to school in some fantastic costumes from all over the French-speaking world. A full day of activities followed including making (and eating!) mille-feuilles, playing Boules  and racing for the Course de Garçons de café outside on the lawn, pointillism and painting mimicking in art and Le Rallye Monte Carlo with carrot cars for the boys in Elements. The teachers also did a fantastic job decorating their classroom doors in different French-speaking countries. Thank you to the boys for their contribution on the day, to our parents for organising the costumes, to our kitchen staff for the delicious ‘coq au vin’ and to Madame Negkaki for organising such a fantastic day for us.

Chicks 005.JPG

Living Eggs

Monday 13th - Friday 24th March
Everyone at Donhead was very eggs-ited when the first of our living eggs hatched. All the boys have loved having the chicks in school, have taken great care of them and have enjoyed learning about eggs, incubation and chickens. The boys in PP2 brainstormed adjectives to describe the chicks and one boy summed up everyone's feelings when he wrote "we'll miss you adorable, fluffy chicks".  It is incredible to see how much they have grown during the time that we have had them and we look forward to having the living eggs back again next year.

Xavier House Tea

Tuesday 28th March
Congratulations to Xavier, the winning House of the coupon count up this Lent term. The Xavier boys celebrated with the traditional House Tea served in the Refectory. Well done Xavier!

Stone Age Caves by PP2

Wednesday 29th March

Inter-House Music Competition

Wednesday 29th March
Congratulations to all of the Campion boys who won this year's Prep School Inter-House Music Competition at the end of term. Their renditions of ‘Angels’ and ‘We Will Rock You’ were as moving as they were entertaining! Every boy in all three Houses gave his absolute best, making it a tough decision for the adjudicators. A special thanks goes to the five soloists and Donhead Choir members who gave some sparkling performances while the adjudicators made their decision.

PP2 Planetas

Thursday 30 March
The boys in PP2 had an exciting term in their Spanish lessons, learning about planets and how to form sentences to describe them. After a lot of hard work, the boys created their own planet books. When you open the two halves of the planet, you reveal a concertina book with many facts about planets. All the work is written in Spanish and made entirely by the boys. Well done PP2.

Starlab Planetarium

Thursday 27th & Friday 28th April
Thanks to all year groups for their wonderful listening in the mobile Starlab planetarium - this timed perfectly with images of Saturn being sent back from Cassini. We all learned about the different asterisms and now know how to find Ursa Major and the north star. Elements enjoyed linking asterisms to the Ancient Greeks and their knowledge about this was impressive. A special thanks to Jim from the Discovery Centre Bracknell for giving ten presentations in two days. For budding astronomers, the Science Centre in Winchester and Jodrell Bank in Manchester are both great places to visit. Per ardua ad astra!

Bloodhound Rocket Car Competition

Thursday 4th May
Congratulations to the Elements Year Rocket Car competitors who claimed the top three places in the Bloodhound ‘Race for the Line - Rocket Car' Competition. The top team will now go on to the final which, hopefully, will be held at the ‘Goodwood Festival of Speed’ towards the end of June. Congratulations to all concerned, including Mr Amos for organising it all.

LP1 visit the Wimbledon Synagogue

Tuesday 9th May
LP1 enjoyed their visit to the Wimbledon Shul. Friendly volunteersexplained the three main purposes of the synagogue: to provide a place for worship, education and community meetings.  A fun time was had by all as Mrs Nealon was dressed by some volunteers in a kippah (to cover her head) and a tallit (wrapped around her shoulders), in preparation for receiving the Torah.  Some boys summoned their strength to open the ark doors and bring out the sacred Torah scrolls. After learning about the Torah, the best part came when they all got to take part in a mini Shabbat. The beautiful prayers were sung as the boys followed right to left in the prayer books.   The ‘wine’ we had was tasty grape juiceaccompanied by challah, the braided bread.  LP1 returned to school ready to prepare a presentation for the assembly on Monday.

Trinity Term Informal Lunchtime Concert

Wednesday 10th May
Congratulations to all of the performers at Wednesday’s Informal Lunchtime Concert in the Auditorium. All the participants’ performances were very well received by a most appreciative audience.

Bubbly Maths

Thursday 11th May
On Thursday the boys in Pre-Prep took part in a fun workshop looking at maths in a creative way with the Bubbly Maths Clown.

'Ye-Ha!' Prep Performance

Thursday 11th May
Thank you to the boys in Prep and to their teachers for a most enjoyable and enthusiastic performance of ‘Ye-Ha’ on Thursday.  The boys had clearly worked hard on their performance and the audience were highly appreciative.  Great costumes and puns a plenty added to the show. Well done everyone!

Trinity Term Lower Prep & Prep Year Concert

Monday 15th May
Congratulations to all of the instrumental and vocal soloists who took part in Monday’s Concert and worked so hard towards the event. All the performances were very well received by an appreciative audience.

PP2 Visit London Zoo

Thursday 18th May

Prep Science Master Class

Thursday 25th May
Prep boys thoroughly enjoyed a Science Masterclass at Epsom College. They designed, made and raced balloon rocket cars in the Physics department, dissected sterilised owl regurgitations in the Biology department andperformedexcitinghands on experiments involving pops and bangs in the Chemistry department. The boys were all kindly treated to snacks in the quad and lunch in grand the Dining Hall. Our sincere thanks go to Epsom College for hosting the boys and inspiring their Science learning - a great day was had by all and we enjoyed seeing some of our old boys, in passing.