Dragons Today Winter 2013-14 - page 3

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D R A G O N S T O D A Y . w i N T e R 2 0 1 3 / 1 4
Dragons News
Tokyo Tourists
Over Half-Term, 16 Year 8 pupils ventured to Japan
as part of the Dragon’s annual exchange with Keio
Yochisha School in Tokyo. Living in the homes of
their exchange partners they had a real taste of
local family life and customs. They also saw and
experienced many iconic things including the Big
Buddha at Kamakura, Asakusa Temple, and the
Bullet Train. A hugely enjoyable trip made all the
more memorable and authentic by the effects of
both a typhoon and an earthquake.
Smooth Sailing
The Dragon hosted the National Prep
Schools Sailing Regatta at Farmoor
Reservoir near Oxford in November.
Welcoming 31 prep schools and 53
boats, the Dragon was represented by
a team of four young sailors in girls’
and boys’ pairs. Despite the unhelpful
weather – no wind in the morning,
incessant rain in the afternoon – the
participating children coped admirably
in the tight competitions. The Dragon
girls were ultimately placed first
overall and won the event with their
courage and skill; the boys finished a
commendable sixth and demonstrated
the same qualities. A great result which
bodes well for future Dragon sailing.
Romans
Return
December was notable for Christmas preparations and the
return of the Romans. Year 5’s Roman Day saw a fabulous array
of costumes, swords and bare knees brighten up the school
as children and staff got into character. Gladiators, goddesses,
peasants and slaves enjoyed a day of Roman themed learning.
Hands-on teaching sessions at the Ashmolean Museum were
followed back at school by chariot racing, jewellery-making,
classical red-figure pottery and, of course, a Roman lunch. A
stimulating Dragon day of togas and tunics when sword fighting
is permissible, Roman day will return next year – mirabile dictu.
Dambusters Drop By
Late on an autumn Saturday
afternoon, Dragon boarders gathered
in the dusk to spot the approach of
a very special group of runners. As
news arrived that they were nearing
Bardwell Road, the school bell rang
out and 150 children, members of
the Leonard Cheshire Community,
pupils from St Edward’s School, and
the Thames Valley RAF Cadet Force
gave a tumultuous welcome to the
Dambusters Run. Members of the
legendary RAF No.617 squadron
were stopping off briefly in Oxford on
their seven day endurance challenge
in support of Leonard Cheshire
Disability. Group Captain Cheshire
VC, a former pupil of the Dragon and
St Edward’s, commanded the famous
Dambusters Squadron during World
War II and was one of the most
decorated pilots of the conflict. The
charity he founded after the war, now
a global name in disability support,
began when he opened his own
home to disabled veterans.
Rested and cheered on, the
runners departed into the darkness
to continue their gruelling non-stop
run to their base at Lossiemouth
in Northern Scotland. Shortly after
they arrived there on 11 October,
the squadron were deployed to
Afghanistan for a final tour of duty.
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