21.09.2017 Sir Linkalot 

Sir Linkalot

From the Headmaster

Dear Parents,

Looking back over the highlights of the past few days, the visit of Sir Linkalot certainly encouraged the children to think about memory connections. Judging by the number of pupils who confidently volunteered to spell the word onomatopoeia during our Spectrum talk, Sir Linkalot’s distinctive and highly energetic approach clearly made a lasting impression. The talk given to parents on ‘Growth Mindset’ struck a more reflective tone and considered how the language we use and approaches we take can have a significant impact upon motivation and achievement.

On my visits to lessons this week, I have been impressed with the positive attitudes evident among the children, together with the skill of their teachers facilitating a dynamic learning environment. I joined children from A Block for an English lesson in which they were writing the then next chapter of a story, inspired by Patrick Ness’ book More Than This. The same class moved to a History lesson, when they assessed the benefits and disadvantages of the Open Field System. Another A Block class, this time in Science, were invited to analyse how species have adapted to their different environments. Turning to the Middle School and Maths, D Block children in different classes were variously engaged in rounding numbers to one decimal point and learning about the commutative law of multiplication. Elsewhere there was excitement in the Pre-Prep as many children looked forward to their first musical instrument lesson at school. In sport, there were some truly superb team performances in rugby against Bromsgrove School, some plucky displays in hockey against strong opposition and some fine sculling success.

Finally, it was a pleasure to meet parents at the Lower School drinks on Saturday and the Boarders’ brunch which followed Sunday’s Chapel service. I look forward to meeting more parents at the Fathers’ Breakfast this Saturday, ahead of our Open Morning for day families, when we will be very pleased to share with visitors all that the School has to offer.

With all best wishes,

Crispin Hyde-Dunn


Cross Country

A reminder to all parents that on the following dates there are Cross Country fixtures and there will NOT be running club:

Monday 25 September

Monday 2 October

Monday 9 October

Thursday 12 October

Holiday Diaries

Please can all holiday diaries be handed in to the Library by Monday, 2 October.

Christmas Cards Design

The Dragon Sale's Bespoke Christmas Card templates will be handed out to children this Friday. If your child/children would like to participate, please return the finished templates to Ma Bird in the Lodge no later than Monday, 2 October, following Exeat. All proceeds benefit the charities supported by the Dragon Sale. For questions, please contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Upper School Variety Show

On Friday, 6 October (at 6:45pm in the Lynam Hall) there is to be the Upper School Variety Show. This will, as always, be an extremely popular event and so entry is by reservation only.

Before booking, due to a limit on the number of people we can accommodate in the Hall, please could parents note the following… There will be a strict cap of 3 seat reservations per family This performance is only for parents/children in the Upper School. If you have children in the C, D or E Blocks who need to be in school they will attend a separate event laid on for their age group i.e. they will not attend the Variety Show. Please inform Mr Scott if you would like to take up this offer. Children performing may have supper before the performance but I am afraid there can be no such arrangement for those in the audience. Please only reserve seats that you are going to use. The dress for Dragon children in the audience (not Pre-Prep) is normal school uniform and not home clothes.

This promises to be a great evening and early reservation of seats would be prudent so avoid missing out. If you would like to reserve seats for this show please contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. at your earliest convenience (the deadline for bookings will be Monday, 2 October).

Cross Country – ESAA Cup 1st round, U13 Boys and Girls

The date for the ESAA Cup has been announced: Friday, 13 October, at Blessed George Napier School in Banbury, commencing at 2:30pm. Team runners will be selected over the coming weeks. For further information please email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Oxford Half Marathon - Road Closures

Please can boarding parents, planning to pick-up children on the morning of Sunday, 8 October, be aware that due to local road closures they will need to arrive before 8am. The roads are due to reopen at about 2:00pm.  Because of this there will be no Sunday service on that day. However, all boarders are welcome to take a leave out (in addition to their termly allocation) starting after school commitments on Saturday and returning to school on Sunday in time for bedtime. Of course, the School and houses will be fully functioning for those boarders who remain at school.

Roadworks on Bardwell Road

We have been advised by Southern Gas Networks of their intention to carry out essential gas maintenance work on Bardwell Road, Charlbury Road, Chadlington Road and surrounding roads. Works are due to commence on Monday, 9 October and last around 7 to 10 weeks.

For further information please click here.

Change to Match Times

Due to the Abingdon Pre-Tests there have been alterations to kick off times and venues for some of the matches vs Caldicott on Saturday, 14 October:

The U13C and U13D teams are now away at Caldicott. The U12A, U12B, U12C and U12D teams are now at home and all the home games will be kicking off at 3:00pm. The away games remain 2:30pm kick offs.

Calling all Apple Tree Owners

If you are lucky enough to own one, or even several apple trees, and are wondering what to do with the surplus produce, the Eco Group at the Dragon would be delighted to use them to make our ever popular ‘Dragon Juice’ to sell at the Dragon Sale.

Please bring them to either Room 8 in the Forum (Ma Malcolm’s classroom) or to the Pre-Prep, and we will put them to good use. Windfalls are acceptable if not too damaged.

21.09.2017 Apples


Open Days for Prospective Families

Dragon Prep Open Morning – Saturday, 14 October, Dragon Pre-Prep Open Morning – Friday, 17 November, London Drinks – Tuesday, 14 November, If you have any friends or colleagues who would like to learn more about the Dragon at either of our upcoming Open Mornings, or London Drinks, please encourage them to contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. for further information and to book places.

Invitation: New York Drinks for the Dragon Community – Wednesday, 26 October, from 6.30pm, Greenwich Village

During the upcoming exchange trip to New York over half term, we will be holding a gathering for the Dragon Community on Wednesday, 26 October between 6.30pm and 9.00pm. The event will kindly be hosted by Old Dragon, Tim Luke, at his home in Greenwich Village. We would be delighted to welcome ODs, current, former and prospective parents, and former staff who may be based in, or visiting during this time. If you, or anyone you know in the Dragon Community would like to be sent more information, please contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., Marketing Manager, for further details or to book.

Save the Date: Arduus ad Solem: Dragon Community Networking, LAW – Monday, 20 November 2017, from 6:30pm, The Law Society London

Please save the date for the next event in our Arduus ad Solem Dragon Community Networking series, for all those working in Law. We will be welcoming ODs, parents, and members of the wider Dragon community to join us in London on Monday, 20th November for an evening discussing the ‘Challenges Faced in Law today’. We will be joined by OD Industry experts to offer tips and mentoring advice, with the aim of building a strong network within our school community for those working in, or starting out in, Law. Further details will follow soon but please send any enquiries This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..


C Block Team Building

Last Saturday, C Block participated in the annual ‘Team Spirit’ morning – their spirit was only matched by that of the MC and organiser, Mr Pickup, as they worked in an incredibly cohesive and effective manner. In one exercise they used their initiative and high levels of creativity to produce a tower using very limited resources. Apparently, this was one of the strongest showings from a C Block cohort within recent memory, and this bodes well for the upcoming year.

 21.09.2017 C Block Team Building


Origami Rhinos

Ahead of World Rhino Day (22nd September) the Changemakers and Good Creators activity groups learned about the danger of rhino extinction due to the illegal trade in rhino horn, and made their own colourful paper rhinos by following a video that guided them through the folds of a complex origami pattern.

21.09.2017 Origami Rhinos 

STEM – Girls Can

C Block have been learning how computers store information and have been coding their own messages in binary. Ma Kirkland is on a mission to get more girls interested in STEM subjects: Science Technology Engineering and Mathematics. It was great to see C Block girls engaging enthusiastically with computer coding.

21.09.2017 STEM

Sir Linkalot

You may well have heard from your children about Sir Linkalot's extremely successful visit to the School last Friday. He succeeded in his mission to impress upon the children and staff that linking is an invaluable, yet underused, learning tool which students of all ages can utilise in their journey through education. To see the smiles on the children's faces when they spelt out a word correctly, especially those who could do with a boost, was a joy to behold; it really is life-changing for some of our children.

Many of the parents who were able to attend the parent presentation purchased copies of the two books he has on the market. We would like to extend this opportunity to those who were not able to make the evet: 1. 'Think of a link - How to remember absolutely everything' (£7). This fun, little book, published by Scholastic, has many tips and tricks (links) for how to learn any fact, covering spelling, Maths, History dates, World Capitals, Key science facts, French words and many more categories. It would sit nicely on a bedside cabinet for children to dip in to for 5 to 10 minutes before going in to the land of nod. Here is a BBC clip about the book.....BBC News South East 2. 'Thinkalink - The revolutionary spelling technique that will ensure your child can spell every word' (£22). This is, to quote The British Dyslexia Association, ‘groundbreaking’. It contains links for over 1000 commonly misspelt, high frequency words. This is more of an exercise book that will sit on their desk at home for many years as it covers GCSE words like Recommend, Environment, Definitely and Accommodate.

If you would like to buy either/both books (one of each is £25), then please email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. with ''Dragon'' in the subject line. The little book will contain a personal dedication to your child(ren). So, do let her know who you would like the book(s) dedicated to, i.e one name, two names or the family name. Just to remind you what it's all about, here is a clip of Sir Linkalot in action with 10 Year 5 children who could do with a spelling boost... Sir Linkalot @ Cranleigh Prep We think these books will be a very useful resource for your children now and in the future. 


Showing Support – Oxford Harlequins

The Wilson and Bowden boys got together last weekend to go and support their teachers Mr Knapp and Mr Fairburn playing rugby for Oxford Harlequins. The boys were very impressed by the standard and tried to pick up a few new moves to use in their up-coming matches. Mr Knapp and Mr Fairburn certainly appreciated their support and Mr Knapp showed this by scoring a try right in front of them all.  The boys then continued into Summertown for hot chocolate to warm up before heading back to their houses for the Saturday night film. Good Luck Sirs in your next match.

21.09.2017 Harlequins 


Neurosurgeon to Author

Dr Henry Marsh CBE (OD 1963) had an accomplished career as a neurosurgeon, but - typical Dragon - he did not stop there. From 1992 he began working in the Ukraine, and also Nepal, alongside local surgeons. His remarkable work, which considers deeply the patient's experience of brain surgery, led to a film about him, The English Surgeon which won multiple awards, as did his candid book Do No Harm. Recently he has published a bestselling follow-up, Admissions in which he continues to reflect on our relationship with the mind. The Economist wrote of Henry that 'neurosurgery has found its Boswell'. 

21.09.2017 Marsh

Diary Reminders

For all sports fixtures and the full calendar of events, please see the main School Calendar.

Friday, 22 September 2017

6:45pm: Spectrum: James Ketchell; Adventurer 

Saturday, 23 September 2017

OPEN MORNING (for day families) 8:15am: Fathers' Breakfast 

Sunday, 24 September 2017

10:00am: Fifteenth Sunday after Trinity; Mrs Eve Jardine-Young, Principal of Cheltenham Ladies College 

Tuesday, 26 September 2017

2:00pm: Science Challenge at Bradfield (for group of selected D Block pupils)

Thursday, 28 September 2017

9:00am: A Block Art Scholars' trip to St Ives departs (return on Sunday at 6:00pm) 4:30pm: Informal Concert (in the Music School)

Friday, 29 September 2017

 12:15pm: WEEKEND EXEAT begins for Middle School & E Block (until evening of Sunday 1st October) 12:30pm: WEEKEND EXEAT begins for Upper School (until evening of Sunday 1st October)


Dragon Links

These are just some of the useful links found on our website. Further information can be found here.



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