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Seasons greetings to all our readers, it is amazingly gratifying to see this web site having more and more ‘hits’ – in particular my news in the early days was only read by one rather eager student – now it has hundreds of readers - thanks for all your comments – and especially those of you who have commented on the children and young peoples work that appears on the web site. It is so reinforcing for young people in hospital to know that they are reaching a wider audience.

We are always absolutely delighted to hear from our past students, so please keep letting us know how you are doing, such a wide range of studying, from theology to psychology with many ‘ologies’ in between. We have also been amazed by how many young people have achieved highly in their SATs, GCSE and ‘A’ levels despite spending much time in hospital. You really are an inspiration to so many other so please keep the news coming in.

Click here to see our team Trish, Ann, Fiona and Helena beavering away on their weekly fundraising stall – this stall has been running for 15 years and has ensure that the hospital school provides a 50 week a years education and arts programme. It also helps to pay for all the artists that visit the four hospitals on a regular basis

Here is some information about some of those artists

Painting and Performance Art
Shaun Dolan works as an artist at Chelsea & Westminster Hospital, Royal Brompton Hospital and St. Mary’s. He addresses the content of the art curriculum, including GCSE art and ‘A’ level art. He works in many types of medium including, clay, sculpture, oils and conceptual art. This additional art gives children the opportunity to express themselves and develop a range of methods of describing their feelings.

Catherine Parkinson is a mosaic artist and works at Collingham Gardens, the children have now made 4 major mosaic pieces which we will transfer to the new building when we move. They have also designed and made plates with pictures of food for the new kitchen.

This experience of working with a real artist who is well known in the mosaic world has given the students confidence in their ability.

Art therapy
Susan Rudnick uses art therapy with children in isolation at St.Mary’s and The Royal Brompton – art therapy can help with containing feelings whilst in hospital, it provides an opportunity to talk describe feelings through drawing and painting rather than using words.

Phillip Wells is a performance poet and works with children at all sites to enable them to enjoy poetry and to begin to write their own, Some of these poems are on our web site.

Brian Speirs runs evening music groups at the Royal Brompton and Collingham and a lunchtime music session at Chelsea. These sessions are great fun and all ages plus parents can join in.

Giles Abbott is a wonderful storyteller and tells stories to children throughout the hospital school. This is particularly soothing for those children who are in bed or in isolation.

We also have the London Symphony Orchestra and the National Gallery and the National Portrait Gallery visiting all hospital sites on a regular basis, this experience enhances the children’s stay in hospital.

All these activities, as well as our youth club programme help us to provide and extended school for our pupils.

We are delighted that one of our students Obinna has been selected for inclusion in the 2008 Road Safety and Green Travel Calendar. 27 schools entered and 1700 drawings and paintings were judged.

ICT & Video conferencing
We are delighted that so many young people in hospital are now able to join in classroom sessions and link up with museums, art galleries and their school and colleges through video conferencing. This has been a steep learning curve for all staff and students and the ultimate experience of learning together. We look forward to students and families comment on this development.

Christmas Activities
We have had a wonderful two day visit from an extremely talented band called Iroko, this has been videoed and we hope you will soon be able to see this on the web site. This exciting and dynamic group have been visiting the hospital for the last 10 years so I am sure many of you can remember playing music and dancing with them.

On Wednesday 19th at 10.30am we will have our Christingle service at the Chapel in Chelsea and Westminster Hospital, we look forward to seeing many of you there, the theme this year is ‘giving’ and we are very please that the mace bearer from the town hall will be attending the service.

Other activities include a visit to the pantomime at Richmond Theatre to see Cinderella and a Circus Space.

I wish you all a peaceful New Year,

Janette Steel
Head Teacher
















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