Message from the office:
This morning I went down to the Foundation Phase passageway and I was struck by the kind and loving attitude of our little girls. Earlier on in the day I had a little grade one gently bringing in her injured friend to be seen by Nurse Lang. The care and concern and gentleness was so sincere and evident it melted my heart and I expressed my desire to play with them during break because such kindness is indeed heart-warming to be surrounded by.
This led me to question why so many of our girls, somewhere along the line, for some reason, become unkind. It is most certainly a trend that has become apparent worldwide where girls can say and do things to each other that can be so hurtful and confidence crushing. Unfortunately this can sometimes be exacerbated in an all-girls school.
I found two articles online which I thought could be of interest to parents; one about helping daughters cope with mean girls and the other about identifying your daughter as the mean girl. I have taken the liberty of taking extracts from both.
The following is an extract taken from
https://www.verywellfamily.com/how-to-cope-with-mean-girls-460678. (Please refer to the link if you wish to view the full article):
The teen years are filled with all types of mean girls. From frenemies and fake friends to toxic friendships and controlling girls, their mean girl behaviour often leaves others feeling hurt, puzzled and distraught.
Mean behaviour is not normal girl behaviour, and your daughter will have no idea how to respond without some coaching from you. One day a girl may seem like your daughter’s best friend, the next day she refuses to speak to her. Your job is to help her see that her friend is not truly a friend but controlling instead.
If your daughter is friends with a group of mean girls, or she is being targeted by a mean girl at school, do not be alarmed by how painful it will be for her. And while it may seem insignificant to you, it is a very big deal to her. As a result, be sure to arm yourself with some thoughtful things to say about the situation. Here are things you might consider telling your daughter.
I Understand: Probably the most important way you can help your daughter is to empathize with her situation. Remind her that no one deserves to be treated the way she is being treated. Be sure your daughter knows that she is not the problem, the mean girl is. Help her focus on her strengths instead.
Smile and Stay Strong: Mean girls often have a natural ability to discern whom they can control and manipulate. So, encourage your daughter to smile and to remain confident. The goal is that your daughter can defend herself in a respectful manner without being aggressive or mean in return.
Consider Your Response: Remind your daughter that although she has no control over what other people say or do, she does have control over her response.
Disengage From the Conversation: If your daughter is a bystander to mean girl behaviour, she needs to know that standing by and saying nothing communicates that she accepts this type of behaviour. If she doesn’t have the courage to say something at the moment, she should walk away. When mean girls don’t have an active audience, they lose some of their power. Remind her that it’s also important to report the unjust behaviour to an adult.
Find another group of Friends: Oftentimes, the mean girl is someone your daughter thought was a friend. Your daughter may be part of a group that now has become a clique and the girls in it are no longer true friends but frenemies instead. Talk to your daughter about how to spot fake friends.
Focus on School: Children often allow what others say and do to impact their everyday lives. And the first thing that is impacted is their schoolwork. Help your daughter change her focus. Monitoring cell phone and computer use is a good place to start. But don’t prevent your daughter from using these means of communication. Instead, encourage her to spend less time on social media. Stress that she should not let the turmoil caused by another’s actions control her life and her time. She needs to take back the control and focus on something she has control over like school or sports.
Do everything you can to help your daughter cope with mean girls. You will be glad you did.
What do you do if you suspect your daughter is one of the mean girls? The following is extracted from: https://www.realsimple.com/work-life/family/kids-parenting/daughter-mean-girl , which you might find useful. It suggests that you need to keep an eye out for these signs:
•Does she try to control her friends? “Mean girls” and other bullies tend to be very aware of the social cliques and hierarchy, and try to dominate others in order to boost their own social status.
•Has a parent or teacher ever complained about her? Bullying and mean-girling can go on for a long time before parents get wind of it. So when a teacher, parent, or family member expresses concern about something your daughter has said or done to hurt a friend, listen up.
•Is she really, really confident? Self-confidence is a great thing for young girls but sometimes being extremely confident and popular can make girls feel they’re entitled to boss around or even ostracize children they consider their inferiors.
•Does she blame others for her bad behaviour? Shifting blame is a classic characteristic of children who bully. The same goes for “sneaky” behaviour and manipulation.
If you’ve checked off a couple of those red flags, first, take a deep breath, and keep in mind that it doesn’t mean your daughter is a bad , or that you’re a bad parent. “Many times children who are being mean aren’t feeling good about themselves, or something difficult is going on in the family.
Talk to her teachers: Ask if they’ve noticed any bullying behaviour, and if so, how you can work together to nip it in the bud. Brown Braun also reminds parents to be extra careful how they talk around their children—even (or especially!) when you think they’re not listening.
Gossiping about friends or celebrities over the phone, for example, models judgmental behaviour and can have a big impact on how your child treats her friends.
Whatever you do, don’t write off your daughter’s meanness as “just a phase.” As parents, we want to see the best in our girls, but choosing to notice and address the worst in them will benefit their happiness in the long run.”
Social Media reports
I am aware that there are parents who may be concerned about a post that is doing the rounds on Social Media regarding the implementation of certain aspects of sexual education in the Life Skills and Life Orientation Curriculum. I have received emails from two separate unions who have questioned this document and they have stressed that they have had no consultation on the matter. The Education Department itself has submitted a report highlighting the inaccuracies and misinterpretation of most of the social media content. Therefore I do believe that many of the reports are inaccurate, but as there has been a strong reaction to these reports, I do not foresee it being implemented without resistance from many quarters. Bear in mind that if the department report refuting these claims is true, much of the information that is doing the rounds on Social Media appears to be once again aimed at creating mass anxiety.
Regardless of the outcome of this process however, although we try very hard to adhere to the curriculum as prescribed in the CAPS documents, I would like to assure you that we believe in our right as a school to recognise the stage our girls are at in their lives and the cultures and religions they belong to, and we will stand by your rights as parents to have a say in any questionable content being prescribed to be taught that you may deem harmful and inappropriate for your daughter.
I would also like to thank the mother who phoned to chat to me about this so I could alleviate her concerns. Please always feel free to come to chat to us about issues that you may have concerns about as this open communication will help cement a trusting and open relationship between us as the school management and you as the parents and/or guardians of the girls in our care.
On Monday we had our House Assembly. The House Captains for 2019 reported on the year and received the House Awards for 2019. The Leadership Team Portfolios for 2020 were also announced:
Azosule Kanana Rutendo Chakona
Tristen Williams Sue-Anne Swanepoel
Tazné du Plessis Mikayla Cock
Chloe Maartens Kuhle Mpama
Athletics Bronté Agnew
Swimming Sydney Edwards
Tennis Tara Bettridge
Music Chloe Maartens
Choir Kuhle Mpama
House and Deputy House Captains
ALOE: Mika Davies & Onwaba Santi
DISA: Sydney Edwards & Amy Arends
ARUM: Sisonke Magopeni & Esona Mnqinana
FERN: Tara Bettridge & Bronté Agnew
The Netball and Hockey Captains, Head Girl and Deputy will be announced in 2020.
Thank you to all our outgoing leaders and congratulations to our new leaders!
Thank you so much for the kind and generous donations towards our Christmas hampers for our grounds staff. We managed to put together wonderful overflowing hampers. We can’t thank you all enough for your generous response to this appeal. May you too be blessed over the Christmas season as you have blessed them!
Thank you to our dedicated swimming moms and dads who volunteered to time keep at the dolphin shield gala on Tuesday. It was wonderful seeing so many “hands on deck”. Thank you too to the warm support received from the stands. The results will be in the next newsletter.
Mon. 11/11 Gr 4-7: Maths
Tues. 12/11 Gr 4-7: English Comprehension & Language
Wed. 13/11 Gr 4-7: SS/Geographyy
Thurs. 14/11 Gr 4-7: Afr/Xho Comprehension & Language
Fri. 15/11 Gr 4-7: SS/History
Mon. 18/11 Gr 4-7: Art & Gr 7: EMS
Tues. 19/11 Gr 4-6: Life Skills
We were thrilled to see that all our girls were being picked up timeously after school this week. Thank you for ensuring that your girls have a conducive environment to study and to achieve their best these exams.
If your daughter received a prize at the prizegivings last week you can now order a photo of her receiving it. The cost of the prize-giving photographs is R30 per photo. They are available for viewing on the notice board outside the office (check for the photo code), an order form can be collected from the office (IP) or will be brought home (FP). Please return the order form with the payment (or proof of EFT payment) to your daughter’s class teacher by Friday, 15 November 2019. Please ensure that the correct photo code has been included. If you have any questions please pop by the office.
The Kind Club is selling raffle tickets to raise money for the Child Welfare Children for Children Campaign. Tickets are R5 and you could win a big Christmas Chocolate Hamper!
We would like to wish the following girls a very happy birthday for next week: Jessica Schlebush, Mihle Maqoqa, Iminathi Mengu and Keisha Juries.
Mrs M Rafferty