Skip to content

When was the last time you… Headmaster’s Blog -Wednesday 4th May 2016

May 4, 2016

When was the last time you…

I have just finished playing my weekly game of hockey with parents and staff (Ed:Blog written on Saturday 30th April)– a precious hour and a half. Each Saturday we come together for some fitness training (well, about 10 minutes of stretches and some running), hockey skills and then a small-sided game. It’s stimulating to be running around in the fresh air and a real change for most parents who swap their role from being spectators at their children’s matches to being part of the game themselves.


Parents ‘A’ vs Parents ‘B’ in our recent community hockey tournament – April 2016

Bank Holiday Black Out


Occasionally, as we catch our breath between training sessions, we muse on the world around us. Today the topic was ‘bank holiday black out’. This has nothing to do with power failure or even an excess of partying, and all to do with a conscious decision to switch off computers and all mobile devices for the weekend. One parent who was trying this told us that his children burst into tears at the prospect. Another said that her children asked, ‘Well what shall we do all weekend?’ She pointed to the book-laden shelves in their lounge and suggested they start from one end!

2016.5.3 Books

There is, of course, a faint sense of humour in all this – even a whiff of old-fashioned family values (and there’s nothing wrong with these). There is also a good dose of common sense, too. By switching off our devices deliberately on a regular basis perhaps gives us some precious moments for personal reflection. It may teach our children that everything of value and worth doesn’t have to be ‘instant’, fast and ‘the latest’ fashion. Turning off social media, even for 24 hours, may even give some of our young people respite from the peer pressure that can be so debilitating. Why bring home the falling out you had at school that day by allowing it to continue on Snapchat, Instagram or Facebook into the evening?

As adults we might also find a renewed sense of purpose, as well as a taking back of control over our lives, if we decided not to look at emails after a particular time when we come home. Shock, horror, it might even be possible to turn the devices off altogether when we are on holiday! So, when was the last time you…?

Alastair Reid (Headmaster)

Ballard School is a non-selective, private co-educational school in New Milton, Hampshire, providing an outstanding level of education for nursery to GCSE. With small class sizes and proven academic excellence, we strive to nurture the academic potential of all students. Learn more about our academic programmes, pastoral care, facilities and school ethos by visiting our website or by requesting a prospectus here.


‘Blackout’ – 

Books: original –

No comments yet

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: