Thoughts from the Study
Last time I checked, we boasted 32 spoken languages within our school community—a statistic I find truly magnificent. At the core of Broomfield’s ethos is the commitment to fostering an inclusive environment where every child, family, and staff member feels valued and understood. In our journey through the rich mosaic of cultures that embellish our school, we’re constantly reminded of the pivotal role cultural education plays in moulding the minds and hearts of our children. This is why the Early Years Statutory Framework dedicates an entire section to ‘Understanding the World’, highlighting its significance. In light of the unrest in various parts of the globe, it’s imperative for us to remember that strong relationships are built on a deep understanding and respect for one another, celebrating our diverse beliefs and traditions. It’s crucial that our children are immersed in a broad spectrum of cultural experiences, with this week serving as a prime example.
Earlier this week, I had the joy of witnessing parts of the Lunar New Year celebration in Year 1, and was also delighted to hear about the success of the Pre-Kindergarten festivities. The celebrations marking the Year of the Dragon offered a glimpse into the rich cultural heritage of others, providing some children with entirely new experiences. The hall resonated with the soothing melodies of music played by some of our parents, accompanied by a mesmerising dance performance by a professional dancer, whose movements vividly narrated the traditions and stories from distant lands. The children, many adorned in traditional attire, participated in the dancing, creating a vibrant atmosphere of communal joy and fun. I am profoundly thankful for the exceptional support from our parent community and would like to extend my personal gratitude to all involved for crafting such a memorable experience for the children. This week has mirrored our school’s dedication to embracing and learning from the plethora of cultures that enrich our lives.
We observe various religious holidays, significant events, and important dates throughout the academic year, and yet, are always eager to expand our cultural horizons. Discussions are ongoing about how we can weave more cultural experiences into our curriculum, an endeavour we are excited to delve into.
Our teaching philosophy not only incorporates these elements through the curriculum but also in assemblies, enrichment clubs, and through the invaluable contributions of our diverse staff. Culturally responsive teaching strategies underscore our dedication to diversity by forging meaningful connections between classroom-based lessons and the varied backgrounds of our children. On a daily basis I see the school as a haven for expression, sharing experiences, and embracing the diverse backgrounds that enrich our community. I firmly believe that acknowledging and nurturing the unique cultural strengths each child brings to the classroom not only fosters academic success but also creates a supportive atmosphere that celebrates our differences.
The saying goes, “Life is like a book, and those who do not travel only get to read a single page.” I am aware that a significant number of families will be utilising the half-term break as an opportunity to travel to different countries and immerse themselves in new cultures. Similarly, many will opt to spend time as a family closer to home, partaking in adventures that embrace the wealth of cultural opportunities on offer around London, right on our doorstep. As we reach this halfway point in the academic year, we will continue to explore new ways to incorporate even more diversity into our school, thereby further enriching the learning experiences for all.
Whatever your plans are for the break, I wish you a restful, fun-filled and positive week and for all those celebrating the Luna New Year (and those who do not) , I am sending my best wishes for happiness, good health, luck and prosperity in the year ahead.