Hanukkah means ‘dedication’ and celebrates the liberation of the Jewish people over 2000 years ago from persecution by Greek king, Antiochus IV. Following victory, the Jewish temple in Jerusalem was reclaimed and the wicks of the menorah (a seven branched candle) miraculously burned for eight days even though their was only enough sacred oil for one day. This miracle proved God’s presence and protection and has been celebrated by Jews ever since.

During assemblies students learned about the story of Hanukkah and how the Jewish community celebrate this festival over eight days and nights. In tutor time, students discussed the challenges they face in day to day life and how they need to be resilient and dedicated in overcoming them.

In celebration of the traditional foods eaten during this festival, students also took part in a doughnut derby (no licking your lips!) and created Hanukkah greeting cards in an attempt to win doughnuts and chocolate money for their tutor group. Eleanor Easton in 8S2 had the winning entry – well done.

Elsewhere, the students explored the term ‘light’ in relation to mental health and dealing with the challenges and success of everyday life.

Matt Allman, Headteacher, said: “We look to make sure our students are aware of the significant events going on across the world and link it to themes that are more every day and relevant to them. The Hanukkah Focus Week made a lot of us think and reflect on how we view other faiths and deal with the light / darkness in our own lives.”