Helena Charlesworth: Helena Charlesworth’s CommUNITY News no. 1

We (Brother Donald and I) were very pleasantly surprised this week here at school.  At his suggestion I ran an English essay-writing competition last Friday afternoon for any Form 5 students who were interested and about fifty stayed for it (first prize, five free school lunches, second prize, three lunches; then five runners-up with one lunch each).   I already knew I have two boys with good writing skills and, as usual they did well, but the first one I read was from a girl and it was excellent!  She actually won the prize, but only after a lot of reading and re-reading; even Brother couldn’t choose, though he did agree when I finally settled on that girl’s story.   I guess only seven reasonable-to-good ones out of fifty is rather a small number, but we felt it was a ray of hope for the future.

I already knew I have two boys with good writing skills and, as usual they did well, but the first one I read was from a girl and it was excellent!

Principal, Mrs Zeta Teata, with Helena Charlesworth
We just couldn’t get over the way those seven used a varied vocabulary quite well, composed a reasonable story in each case, and their sentence structure was generally good with the exception of some errors, mainly with verbs.  In the case of one of the runners-up, I know he’s been greatly influenced by one of those two good boy writers – I’ve just lately been amazed to see the difference in his attitude to his schoolwork, and it’s all due to this other boy.  And another joy to me was a girl whose brother is in the same class and is quite good, whereas both last year and this year she lagged far, far behind; this time she was one of the runners-up with him!  Isnt’ that lovely?

When Marlene and co. came out on Sunday they went down to the Taiwan mission and came back with trays of vegetable seedlings which Theresa had asked for; she very generously shared them with me, so now I’m waiting for some loads of soil to plant out a dozen or more cabbages and a few each of tomatoes, capsicum and cucumber.  One of the boys has already dug me two pits near the sea wall; I’m filling them with leaves and good soil when it comes then will have to find some shade cloth against that hot sun.  Should keep me out of mischief for a day or two.

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All people desire peace but only few want the things which result in peace. - Thomas of Kempen