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St Rose's

Catholic Infant School

We live, love and learn happily in our work and play as part of God's family

Spiritual Life

“The glory of God is a human being fully alive” St Irenaeus

 

At St Rose’s, Christ is the foundation of everything we do and the Gospels provide us with our influence and inspiration.We are a family whose members’ value and support each other through tolerance, understanding and mutual trust.

 

Our children continue their spiritual journey at St Rose’s, we provide an experience that strengthens the child's understanding of the impact of the charitable work that they do and the choices they make.  We give our pupils opportunities to have deep and meaningful experiences of prayer in a   variety of ways.

 

Our children experience different forms of worship at school each week; whole school liturgy where we break the word of God, more intimate class collective worships, personal pray and meditation.

 

Importantly, on their journey at St Rose’s, our pupils develop leadership skills in areas of life that support others. We encourage them to become inquisitive thinkers that question the world around them whilst celebrating and valuing difference in our world. We are a rights respecting school.

 

In this section, you can find out about the different worship experiences children have in our school at special times in the liturgical calendar.

Dom Squad and School Council Trip to Westminster

The Dom Squad

The Dom Squad are our school's spiritual leaders. Their roles in school include, leading the children in spiritual faith, encourage children to apply what they have learnt from the Bible's teachings into everyday practice and develop good relationships within both the school and wider community. 

 

The Dom Squad follows the teachings of St Dominic, who is the Patron saint of Astronomers. As part of their work in The Dom Squad, the children follow the four Dominican Pillars: community, service, study and prayer. Every year, in the summer term, the children need to apply to become a member, explaining what skills they can bring to the role and why they should be chosen for this prestigious duty. 

 

The roles of The Dom Squad include: 

  1. Setting up for assemblies;
  2. Delivering the Wednesday Word;
  3. Leading Friday morning class prayers;
  4. Leading whole school Liturgies (once a month);
  5. Running the Prayer Garden of St Rose and St Dominic. 

 

This week, The Dom Squad delivered the Wednesday word to each class. They helped the children to greet the Gospel by singing Rise and Shine, then explained why the Wednesday word was important. All of the children enjoyed hearing The Dom Squad explain about the different activities that they could complete in order to help them to understand Sunday's Gospel reading. 

 

 

 

Our Prayer Garden

The grass withers and the flowers fall,
    but the word of our God endures forever.

Isaiah 40:8

Our pupils asked us to create a peaceful and prayerful space that they could use during the school day. We were fortunate enough to receive donations from our parents / carers, local business and staff to create a prayer garden in our school. Our children thought about what they would like in their garden and designed it. The staff helped them to bring it to life. There are some before, during and after construction photos below. Our pupils use the garden throughout the school day for a moment of prayer and quiet reflection and a small team of pupils help to look after the garden. Our Parish Priest officially blessed and opened the Prayer garden in October 2018.

      

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Purple Day Liturgy

On Monday, 2nd December we celebrated our Advent liturgy. To mark the start of Advent, everyone was invited to wear a piece of purple clothing as a sign that we are preparing for Jesus’ birth, the first coming. During the Gospel according to Matthew 24:36, we thought about the importance of being ready for the second coming of Jesus. The Gospel reading reminded us that we always need to have the love of God and Jesus in our hearts. We spoke about the meaning of the word Emmanuel which means that God is with us, this helped to remind us that God is always near us with many of us feeling him next to us in the Liturgy. Finally, we shared the symbols that we had made for our Jesse Tree. This is displayed on our whole school RE display. Each week, as we count down to the birth of Jesus Christ, we will learn about a new Bible story.  Our mission is to use the Bible reference on the symbol to read the Bible story at home with our families and then to think about what the symbol represents.

 

Remembrance Liturgy

The Dom Squad led our Remembrance day liturgy. They read prayers, read the Gospel and explained why we remember those who have fallen on the 11th of November each year. Each class prepared poppies for the liturgy and these were displayed thoughtfully in front of the worship table by the Dom Squad. After the liturgy, members of the school council placed their class's poppies at our remembrance tree. Together we said the Hail Mary, asking our mother in heaven to look after all of those who are no longer here on earth with us.

 

Fr. Brian Visits

Fr. Brian came to eat lunch with us on Friday, 8th November. We enjoyed sharing lunch with him and talking about our learning. We look forward to sharing our lunch with you again soon, Fr. Brian!

 

 

Andrew Masters Visit

On Tuesday, 5th November we welcomed Andrew Masters who came to celebrate our assembly with us. He entertained us with his guitar playing, reminding us through song that Jesus loves us because the Bible tells us so. Andrew Masters told us the story of Daniel in the Lions Den, using children of all ages to help him to retell the story. We spoke about the importance of courage and trusting in God because he always keeps his promises to us.

 

"I am alive, my God has saved me!" Daniel 6

 

Harvest Mass

On Monday, 7th October 2019 Fr. Brian said our Harvest Mass. It was a wonderful opportunity to welcome Fr. Brian to our community, thanking God for him, as well as the Harvest food. Fr. Brian spoke to us about keeping our flame of faith alive and spreading God's message through our own actions. After Mass, Year 2 delivered the Harvest food to elderly members of our community at William Crock House.

 

 

Adoremus

This year we have been learning about the Blessed Sacrament. Fr Paul celebrated Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament with us. He brought in the monstrance where he put the Body of Christ during our Adoration. We sang 'Shine the light' and 'This little light of mine'. Fr Paul encouraged us through meditation to walk side by side with Jesus on his journey in the Gospel. Through this adoration, we were able to engage on a deep level with the Biblical story (John 3: 16-21), understanding that Jesus is with us; Jesus walks beside us on all of our journeys. The children thought about the important message from the story, 'Love one another, as I have loved you'. They considered what they would like to say to Jesus and what they think Jesus would say to them. The Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament was a powerful experience that helped us to connect with our saviour, our Lord Jesus Christ in an alternative way.  Take a look at some of the artwork we have created as reflections on the Blessed Sacrament.

 

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Harvest

We celebrate our first Mass of the school year together for Harvest. Our community thanks God for all we have, as well as taking time to pray for those that have less than us. Before Mass, our community donates food to be shared with those in need. After Mass, our Y2 children, parents, carers and staff deliver our Harvest parcels. We give generously delivering the gifts to William Crook House. The elderly occupants are always thrilled to see St Rose’s children and to receive our kind offerings. We often spread some joy by singing them a song or two as well.
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Remembrance

During the month of November St Rose’s remembers all of our loved ones who are now in heaven. The children learn about why we wear poppies and where it all begin at the end of the First World War. In response to this, pupils often create creative art work to help us remember all those who have fallen in wars, then and now. We hold a Remembrance liturgy to share the children’s work, to pray together and to have our own two minute silence to think about all those who have suffered through war. “At the going down of the sun and in the morning, we will remember them.”

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Advent

There are many exciting activities that have been take place throughout Advent place in order to prepare the children for the special time in the Church’s liturgical year. Our children begin advent by coming to school wearing an item of purple clothing in order to mark the official start of Advent. We share a liturgy where the first advent candle is lit on our Advent wreath. The children, think about hope write down their own hopes for themselves, the community and the wider world. Each week, we continue our reflections on the Advent wreath and offer these up to God during this special time.

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As part of the children’s learning, there are many Biblical visitors in school. These visitors have included the Angel Gabriel, Mary, Elizabeth and even a donkey! They help the children to re-enact the Christmas story at the key points which included, the Annunciation, the visitation and also the road to Bethlehem. The donkey often challenges the children, asking questions about how the different people in the Christmas story felt.

 

During Advent, our community thinks about how Mary and Joseph were from the poorest section in society. We ask all families to consider donating the money that one of their chosen gifts or an item of food this Christmas would have cost and donate this money to a chosen charity at school. We do not ask anyone to spend more or much, the idea is that families choose a present or luxury that your child/family will go without, and instead give the gift of hope to another child through charity at Christmas time.

 

Close to the end of the Autumn term, all our pupils enjoy re-enacting 'The Christmas Story'. Through the use of drama and singing, the children remind us of the meaning of Christmas with Oscar worthy performances! They really enjoy sharing the special journey that Mary and Joseph took on the donkey to Bethlehem as well as sharing a peaceful and reflective moment drawing focus onto Christmas in the modern world through prayer. 

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St Rose’s pupils attend our Parish annual Caritas Christmas event where elderly and lonely people in our local community come together to enjoy a delicious meal and great entertainment. They sing a selection of songs from their Nativity play during dinner time and spread a little joy. Afterwards, children who attend this event share their experiences with the whole school.  They often explain that they know they have brought joy to people less fortunate than themselves because they can see smiles and laughter in the room. Experiences like this support our pupils to understand how they could bring joy to the world and how Jesus shows us what joy means in the world. We also attend the Westminster Diocese Children’s Advent mass.

 

We are also visited by special guests in advent; we have a school fair, the children enjoy a pantomime in school, we have Christmas dinner together with crackers, party hats and music… often there is a sneaky visit from Santa Claus himself...and child is gifted with an early present.

 Our Christmas RE home learning tasks are celebrated at class collective worships. All parents/carers are invited to attend their child’s class worship. Families and children enjoy taking a moment to reflect on the true meaning of Christmas together and share a more intimate experience of worship. We leave each other at the end of term with a prayer for Christmas…

Be near me, Lord Jesus; I ask thee to stay close by me forever, and love me, I pray. Bless all the dear children in thy tender care, and fit us for heaven to live with thee there.

Lent – Shine your light St Rose’s!

Lent is our most important time at school. We begin by reminding ourselves about Shrove Tuesday, the meaning of the word 'shrove' and that it is a time when Christians say sorry for all the things they have done wrong before the start of Lent. The children thought about the things that they could be sorry for and reflected on the ways that they could be more like Jesus. Our children also celebrate the start of lent with a great time on the school field having pancake relay races and flipping pancakes! They put a lot of thought into writing their own Lenten promises not only thinking of sacrifices they can made during this time but one thing they could do differently to make a positive contribution to society and ‘shine their light’ during Lent. At our Ash Wednesday liturgy, our children share their Lenten promises and think of the significance of this special day; how Jesus went without food and water for 40 days. We all reflect on this as we receive Ashes blessed by our Parish Priest.

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Lent is also a time for giving alms. During Lent, our children meet with different charities and choose who they would like to raise money for. This year, the children chose to support the Hertfordshire and Essex Air Ambulance Charity as well as The Catholic Children’s Society. Each class worked together to decide upon a sponsored fundraising event that they could hold in school. We had a Nursery cycling challenge, a fun run in Reception, scooting in Y1, a sponsored dance and mathematical Easter egg hunts in Y2! 

It was so pleasing to see how the children have thought about the important work that our chosen charities do and how this passion led to them taking ownership of their fundraising. They have told us that not only have they enjoyed this experience, it has helped them to feel like they have made a difference to others. The children raised over £1500 from their events which was shared equally between the two charities. Our Y2 pupils wrote at length about this experience and how it had helped them to understand the impact of what they do for others.

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As the end of Lent is draws near and our children work very hard to reflect on the importance of Holy Week in preparation for the celebration of Easter. Our Holy week reflections begin with Reception who tell us the story of Jesus’ triumphant arrival in Jerusalem on Palm Sunday. The children really give us a special gift joy with their singing and reminded us of the miracles that Jesus’ performed on his journey and that the faith of those who follow Jesus saves us. Y2 continue the story of Holy week with a sombre and moving retelling of the last Supper often featuring liturgical dance. Y2 work very hard to explore the betrayal of Jesus and the importance of the first Holy Communion. Y1 pupils help us to reflect on Good Friday. Our children rise to the challenge of retelling this most powerful moment in Jesus’ life; his ultimate sacrifice for us. Our pupils demonstrate how well children of infant age can understand and communicate the importance of events which are difficult to understand.

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Y2 Stations of the Cross retreat

Our Year 2 pupils enjoy a reflective retreat at St Mary and St Joseph’s Church to pray the Stations of the Cross. As part of their Lenten journey the children experience different types of prayer by walking the way of the cross and reflecting on the pain and suffering that Jesus endured for us. They pray the Our Father, Hail Mary and Glory Be as they move throughout the church. 

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May the Month of Mary

Each May, we celebrate and honour Mary who followed the will of God all her life. She said “yes” to what God asked of her. Mary is a model of faith for all of us.  

Mary was always faithful to God’s will. She was faithful at the stable in Bethlehem, she was faithful on the flight to Egypt, and she was faithful at the foot of the cross. We think about how we should follow her example and be faithful to God’s will in our lives.

Our children as God for his support to help us to do his will even when it is difficult; help us to be like Mary and respond yes to what God asks of us. We learn to pray the Rosary together and often make our own school Rosary learning about the Decades and prayers.

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Our School prayers

 

St Rose's Morning Prayer
Dear Father in Heaven
I give you today
All that I think and do and say
All my work and all my happy play
I will give to you today - Amen
St Rose's Prayer for Dinner
God our Father
Thank you for our food
Which makes us grow strong and healthy
Amen
St Rose's Afternoon Prayer
Dear Father in Heaven
I come to say
Thank you for your love today
Thank you for my family
And all the friends you give to me
Guard me in the dark of night
And in the morning send your light
Amen
St Rose's Prayer for Peace
Dear God
Grant us peace in our hearts
In our school
In our homes
In our world
Amen
Sign of the Cross
In the name of the Father
The Son
And the Holy Spirit
Amen

 

 

 

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