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MADE IN MAYFLOWER 
Made In Mayflower | 'Together We Can...express ourselves 
3rd February 2021
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FAMILY ENGAGEMENT enables Mayflower to promote community learning. Families sign up to this ethos to create a culture of excellence for all.
"The purpose of life is self expression" - Oscar Wilde
 

Confession time...
I absolutely love shows like American Idol, The Greatest Dancer, The Voice; the shows where contestants are all really amazing. Do you know why? It’s because I’m in awe of the people and the things they can do that I can’t. The way they make their voices work for them and their bodies move. But also the bravery and the freedom they have to do those things so openly and honestly. It’s amazing.


I’m known for being a bit of an extrovert, no inhibitions, try anything kind of person. And I used to believe that about myself too, that I had no fears. But it’s not true. My family see my true inner self, the sides that I don’t always show in public. We all have that part of us, it’s human nature. Something we don’t show others because we’re afraid of judgement.


Self expression isn’t about a lack of fear, it’s about feeling that fear and doing it anyway. THAT’S what I love about those shows I watch. You can see it happening within those contestants. You can watch on their faces the moment fear and anxiety turns to acceptance, turns to freedom and joy.  Because it always does. When we’re true to ourselves, when we find our way for self expression, when we say “no” to the fear that holds us back; that’s when we unleash our whole selves on the world, and when we feel fantastic for doing so.  

This week is Children's Mental Health Week, and the theme is Express Yourself.  There are so many ways we can express ourselves.  We can choose movement, music, writing and any other number of ways.  How we express ourselves, how we show the world who we are, is only limited by our imagination.  Fear is temporary, the joy we get from being ourselves is endless.  

In today's newsletter we'll look at a range of people from different walks of life who all embody self expression.  Maybe they'll ignite a little spark deep inside that will give you the confidence to unleash your inner self.


How do you and your children express yourselves?    We’d love to know.
Tag @NathanwhiteMCA on Twitter and use the hashtag #selfexpression to share
Step up

ATTENDANCE for all is a must. Pupils who are on time and are fully engaged, make more progress. They go on to have better life choices. Step up to the mark.
If you judge a fish by it's ability to climb a tree...

This week I was fortunate to have been able to chat to the inspirational Toby G, MBE founder of Street Factory.  A man who has given his entire adult life to the pursuit of self expression, and helping others recognise and unleash the genius within them.

C
lick the video below to watch us chat about: 
- how important movement is for wellbeing
- hip hop's role in bringing people together
- the power of a community that supports and stretches
- how self expression and genius is within us all


...and me totally miss quote Einstein as Darwin 🤦‍♂️
Toby will be joining me on this week's tea@2.  So come and join us for more chat about movement, self-expression, and to ask any questions.  Don't miss out, tune in at 2pm.

If you'd like to find out more about Street Factory or how hip hop can help your child express themself (and I highly recommend you do) then
 follow the links below to connect with Toby and Street Factory. 

Who knows, this could be the click that helps unleash your child's inner genius  


Website
Facebook 
Sleep is so important to all aspects of our physical, mental and emotional wellbeing.  Here are two great apps that can really help with sleep troubles.  Both offer a free trial period before you decide whether to buy or not. 
Just click the image.
Engage

ENGAGING IN NEW EXPERIENCES  
enables pupils and their families to create a fresh sense of perspective whilst developing their talents and interests.
Self expression is...

...MUSIC
"Where words fail, music speaks" - Hans Christian Anderson

Music is a massively powerful force. There's a genre for every mood and every occasion, and always a song you can find that says just what you were thinking or feeling.  I often hear people saying they "wish they could play an instrument".  What I love about Mike Tompkins is he shows us that you don't need an instrument to make music.  In all of his videos he uses the power of his voice and body to create all of the sounds, and inspires others to do the same.  

Take this collaboration for example - 1000 different people, from all over the World, all coming together to make this track and not a single instrument between them.  THAT'S the power that music has.  Its expressive and it has the power to bring people closer.  

So, why not try singing to express yourself?  I did.  Check out my lesson with Mr J by clicking HERE.

Or, still disappointed you can't play an instrument?  Let your imagination guide you.  Over the years I've built my own Ukuleles out of scrap, been tree tapping in the woods and even ran a vegetable orchestra in one school.  The only thing that holds us back musically is our imagination.  


Let us know how you get on by tagging @NathanwhiteMCA on Twittter and use the hashtag #selfexpression to share 
 
...DANCE
Together we can...yes, that's really the name of this track!

Uganda holds a special place in my heart.  I was fortunate enough to spend a little time travelling around East Africa in my early 20s, and Uganda was by far the most beautiful of the countries I've seen.  I loved the places I visited, the people, the values.  I spent a short while helping to build a school in one village...well, that was the plan.  I actually ended up spending more time with the children teaching me Swahili, and me teaching them English than anything else!

What I loved most about the people was how free they felt to express themselves without fear of judgement.  It was as if every village I stayed in had a direct line to the pulse of the planet.  They danced, they laughed, they sang...they were free and happy.

Dance is one of the greatest forms of self expression.  And
 Masaka Kids Afrikana live and breathe self expression. They are a group of children from Masaka, Uganda who use dance as a means of self expression, to showcase children's talents and support their wellbeing and education.  Dance is infectious, you feel the beat, you have to move.  The trouble comes when we're made to feel that anyone who sees might judge us.  Not in Masaka.  Nobody watches without joining in.   

I'm the same as most people, I hate dancing in front of others.  But at home you should see me move!  I have music playing all the time, and I can't even make a cup of tea without dancing around the kitchen.

Challenge yourself.  Find a space today to dance like no-one was watching.   Then maybe find someone you're comfortable with to start dancing in front of too.

Let us know how you get on by tagging @NathanwhiteMCA on Twittter and use the hashtag #selfexpression to share 
...FOOD
It might be a cafe that's dedicated to breakfast cereal...
...Or a world class 3-Michelin star restaurant, focussing on molecular gastronomy.  

It doesn't really matter what the style is, it's the passion that counts.  I've been fortunate enough to visit both of these places, and the only difference worth worrying about was the price tag.  

Both the owners of The Cereal Killer Cafe, and The Fat Duck restaurant have one important thing in common.  They have the exact same belief about the purpose and power of food, and they believe wholeheartedly in the value of what they do.  Both restaurants use food to evoke memory, they are particularly keen on taking the diner back to their childhood, to simpler times, to when food was fun.  

Self expression. doesn't have to be artistic, it doesn't need you to learn a new skill.  It just needs to be you doing something you love.  Have you ever tried inventing a brand new recipe before?  I did it with my daughter when she was 4 or 5 once....it was an experience, but fun!  We put all of her favourite things into one dish and I wish I could remember the name we came up with for it (old age getting the better of me!). It was a cross between a bread bowl, pizza, pasta, roast dinner.  Yup, that might sound gross but that doesn't matter. It was HER expression of all the things she loved to eat, and it was a fantastic experience to create together.  

How would you express yourself in one dish?


Let us know how you get on by tagging @NathanwhiteMCA on Twittter and use the hashtag #selfexpression to share 
...ANYTHING

It really is that simple.  Any way you can think of that lets you release your inner self on the world, to speak your truth that you can't find the words for...that's self expression.  

One newsletter isn't enough to give examples of everything.  We could have added:
  • Poetry
  • Creative writing
  • Art 
  • Knitting
  • Sports
  • Flower arranging
  • Gardening
  • The clothes you wear
The list can go on for ever.

We'd love it if you could share how you and your children express yourselves?  What do you do that is just...you?


Let us know by tagging @NathanwhiteMCA on Twittter and use the hashtag #selfexpression to share 
Looking for more advice on children's wellbeing?  Try one of these links:
 
Focus

ATTENTION and focus are key learning behaviours that pupils are taught. Pupils learn how to organise their ideas, accelerate progress and achieve the highest standards. 
Self expression matters...
This week I asked you to share your #selfexpression examples.  We've had some lovely examples of children (and adults) expressing themselves creatively.
Just WOW!  When this happened on our Year 1 morning meeting we were all stunned into silence.  We just had to ask for a recording to share with everyone, and here it is.  Any music producers out there ready to snap these two up?
We also started the thread "I wish people knew that..." with our MCA video.  
The responses were honest, vulnerable and true for so many of us.  We can empathise with all of these.  Together we can...support each other.
You can let us know each week how you're looking after your wellbeing using the following hashtags on Twitter:

#wellbeing
#mindset
#toppingup

Each Wellbeing Wednesday we'll consider a different aspect of wellbeing that we can all share some tips on with each other.  This week, how do you stay positive?  Is it always possible?

#staypositive
Dates for your diary 
Dress to Express - Friday 5th February 2021
We aim to end Children's Mental Health Week in style...your style.  Our clothes are our peacock feathers, they're our way of displaying who we are to others at first sight.  
This Friday we ask you and your children to dress to express.  What clothes will you choose to show the world who you are and what you love?  Just remember, if you're in a school bubble it needs to be warm and suitable for a day's work, and to go out to play / do PE in.  

Looking forward to seeing all you peacocks in school and on TEAMS.


Weekly Wellbeing Class Chats - Every Friday
 

Together we can... catch up with our friends and share something we’re proud of.

YN - Fri 1.30-1.50

YR - Fri 2.00-2.20

Y1 - Y5 - Fri 2.15-2.45

Y6 - Fri 9.00-9.30

A chance for us to share a story, then move into smaller groups and have time for the children to chat to each other, not just to their teacher.
 

Art of Being Brilliant Parent Workshop  - 9th February, 6:30pm
This parent session is focussed on encouraging resilience in our children and helping them to rise to challenges. 

Wellbeing Workshop: How can I reduce anxiety for my child and be ‘well’? - Tuesday 9th February, 7:30pm

Behaviour Workshop: How can I prepare & create a positive learning environment? - Tuesday 23rd February, 7:30pm
Empower

DEVELOPING the talents and interests of our pupils and their families sits at the heart of our ‘Together we can…’ ethos. Empowerment fuels improvement for all. 
 
Daily lockdown anthems | Do you have any requests? | Press & play
 
Press and play. Walk Off The Earth are a band that embody self expression, this is such a powerful song and message to everyone..."Hey you know that you're alright".  
Remote Learning has its benefits, but long days of screen time is not one of them. So what do we do to counter this?

This brilliant video highlights and shares the importance of screen breaks in order to balance the day. Class Teachers have very carefully managed your remote timetables to ensure you have plenty of opportunities for rest, fresh air and exercise. It is very important that you take full advantage of these breaks to stand up and stretch. Thank you very much to Mr White for making such a fantastic and useful film. 
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