My Last School Report!

Is there such a thing as school-sick? Because if there is, then I am SCHOOL-SICK! This was my last school report, written by my class teacher, Miss Patrick. As you can see, it is very detailed! When I first received it, I was awed, not by the length of it, but by the fact that she didn’t miss a single detail about me! Just thinking about the amount of effort she put into it touched me! This is something that I will never forget. I will definitely treasure this forever! And in case you’re wondering, yes, that bouquet of flowers that Miss Patrick is holding was from me! 😊

Have a pawsome Wednesday,

Omar Mukhtar

a.k.a. The Pawsome Lionlast school report

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A Message From A Brother…

When I was born, people from Malaysia laughed at my parents for naming me ‘Omar Mukhtar’. According to them, it was a backdated name. They said, “You live in England, why would you give him a name like that?”. The funny thing is that living in England, none of the local people who lived here ever made fun of my name, even at school, students and teachers alike. My parents call me by my full name ‘Omar Mukhtar’, or ‘Mukhtar’ for short. I did choose to be called ‘Mukhtar’ at school too, because ‘Omar’ is also my father’s name and it could get confusing. Even though my friends and teachers found it hard in the beginning to pronounce the name ‘Mukhtar’, they didn’t choose to call me ‘Omar’ just because it was easier for them. They all respected my decision and tried their best to pronounce it. They never call me anything I didn’t want to be called.

I love how my parents named all three of us – Omar Mukhtar, Fatimah and Ali. They didn’t simply just say, “Ooh, ‘Omar Mukhtar’ sounds like a nice name, I’m going to call my son that” no, they named us after the owners of the names, hoping that one day, we might become as great a person as they are – Omar Mukhtar, after the famous Lion Of The Desert; Fatimah, after the beloved Prophet’s daughter; and Ali, after the 4th Khalifa in Islam. Our parents always reminded us how important our names are and that we must live up to them. They also told us to be proud of our names and never be ashamed of them, even though some people say they are old-school.

Whenever we go out and people ask all three of our names, they praise our parents for giving us such great names. There is even a teacher from my school who, whenever I pass him, tells me how much he loves my name. He tells me this on a daily basis without fail!

Now, the same thing that happened to me is happening to Fatimah too. People called her ‘Timoh’ and made fun of her name. It made her really upset! She gets annoyed whenever people call her anything other than her full name because at home and at school, everyone always calls her Fatimah. Sadly, the only people who make fun of our names are Malaysian. Some people simply label those who call Fatimah as ‘Timoh’ only from Kelantan or Terengganu. They’re not! They’re actually from all over Malaysia, which has spread to Singapore and Brunei too!

My parents have been telling people for years to call Fatimah properly but they never stopped calling her ‘Timoh’ until my aunt decided that she too has had enough with all this name calling, so she wrote a post about why we called her Fatimah. After this was posted, we received floods of messages from people who went through the same experience as us. It was truly shocking reading their stories and thinking about what effect it must have had on their lives! But sadly, after that, still, there were many who kept on calling her ‘Timoh’ because they say it’s ‘cute and funny’. How rude!

Name-calling is an act of insult and is a form of bullying. I’m surprised how with all this anti-bullying awareness around the world, people still don’t realise that name-calling is an act of bullying! Don’t take name-calling lightly because it’s a very serious matter! It can affect the person really badly on the inside, even though you can’t see it. They may lose their confidence, for example, and that may affect their life in the long run.

They may blame themselves for their problems, which can also lead to loss of confidence. I could go on and on with this list of effects.

As the Head Boy of my school, if anything like this happened, I would strongly go against it as bullying cannot be tolerated in any situation whatsoever! I would also plead to parents and teachers out there to take this matter seriously and do as much as they can to play their role and prevent things like this from repeatedly happening!

Imagine that every day for a week, you went up to a mirror and called yourself something you don’t like being called. It wouldn’t make you feel too good about yourself, would it? That’s exactly how Fatimah feels when she’s called ‘Timoh’, and how I felt when people made fun of my name. Sure, some people don’t do it intentionally, but we’ve been telling them how to call Fatimah correctly, and still, when she’s now already 4 years old, they continue to mock her name!

Honestly, I’m curious why some Malaysians, who are from the same religion as us, mock our names, whereas people from different religions praise them.

So all in all, name-calling? It’s an act of bullying. It’s something that needs to be stopped and together, we can make that happen. Let us build a world where we can feel safe and happy, a world where bullying is a thing of the past! I am an 11-year-old boy in Year 6 whose sister has experienced bad name-calling, so I’m speaking for her and for those who have suffered and are still suffering from the same issue. If we all act as one then maybe, just maybe TOGETHER WE CAN CHANGE THE WORLD!

p/s: STOP calling my sister TIMOH. Her name is FATIMAH! She has me on her right and Ali on her left. As for me, I’m not bothered if you don’t like my name because I am OMAR MUKHTAR THE PAWSOME LION!

🍰 A Piece of Cake: TOP ATHLETE! 🏆

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A boy was in his sports class, beginning to feel very bored. He was the worst out of everyone. Suddenly, his teacher shouted, “Exercise is important!”

The boy was puzzled as to why his teacher had said this. But, in order to try and impress his teacher, he left the school and ran to the McDonald’s in the next city. After travelling 30 kilometres, he reached a McDonald’s branch and asked, “Could I have 100 buckets of fries 🍟, please?”

He was given the fries for free (as he was their 1000th customer) and ran back to his sports class. When he arrived at his school, he presented the fries to his teacher. “Where have you been? You haven’t exercised!” exclaimed his teacher.

“Exercise? I thought you said extra fries!” said the boy to his teacher, who was watching a crowd of people shout “TOP ATHLETE!”

✍🏻 A Short Story & Doodle by The Pawsome Lion 🦁

School’s Here!!!

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Wagwan pawsome peeps! Hope you’re doing well! As you all know, the Easter holidays have come to an end and it’s the start of a new school term. Since I haven’t written about school for quite a while now, I have decided to write a quick update about what’s going on at school.

As usual, I couldn’t wait to meet my PAWSOME Hazel class again on the first day back. Everyone was in a cheerful mood, especially the ROARSOME duo, Miss Javed and Miss Hussain!

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Since it was the start of a new term, we would be starting a new topic. Our topic for this term is all about Natural Disasters. This topic is jam-packed with lots of fun things to learn such as why earthquakes happen, what makes volcanos erupt, how tsunamis form and much more. And, we made great, enormous volcanos out of ordinary plastic bottles that were put on display. Some children also drew life-like pictures of natural disasters. From what I have seen, I guarantee that everyone will enjoy learning about this topic!

 

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Then, on Thursday, something special happened at school. It was…Arts Day! Arts Day is a day that is dedicated to art and design. Each Arts Day has a different theme each year. The theme for this Arts Day was portraits! As usual, there was task for us to complete. We had to create a portrait, collage or sculpture of someone who inspires us the most. Being the typical me, I’m always ready to take on the challenge! So, I made piece of artwork with both me and Mr Dad in it. As part of the artwork, I also created a quote related to father and son. It was:

“My father is the greatest father anyone could have. He gives me love, guidance and he always believes in me.

But the best gift he gave me was teaching me how to spread my wings and fly!”

By: The Pawsome Lion

Thursday 21st April 2016

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I presented my artwork in a HUGE frame that looked like a film strip. And like I always say, even if I don’t win, I still tried my best! As a treat, a graffiti artist came visited us and explained to us what graffiti is! He also wrote the school’s initials in graffiti style writing and showed us some of the techniques that are used in graffiti art. The finishing product looked AA-mazing!  The graffiti art was going to be in the middle of our arts display once the portraits that we made at school were finished.

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Each year group was also asked to wear a certain colour on that day. This was all part of a school arts piece that we made. Year 4 was asked to wear a blue shirt or dress. Miss Javed and Miss Hussain were both wearing blue tops, blue trousers and even blue hair extensions! For once, they actually looked like twins! When all of the year groups were sitting together, the colours of our clothes made a magnificent rainbow if it was seen from above. Some of the teachers took photos of us and we all can’t wait to see them!

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Me and Nimat have also started our very own Handwriting Club! Our aim is to help children develop their handwriting so they have a better chance of earning a pen licence in the future. There are currently 5 children attending the club. From time to time, we also ask some other children to help us run the Handwriting Club because these children can be a handful (if you know what I mean)! At the moment, the club is for Year 2 children and is held three times a week. The club has been going on for more than two months now. We are also hoping to open up to other year groups over time.

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There is also some other news that I would like to share with you guys. I have finally got a place in Drama Club! As the name states, this is a club where we act out plays and movies. It is run by Mr Ball, a class teacher in Year 5. The play that we are currently practising is called A Midsummer Night’s Dream written by the well-known William Shakespeare. Surprisingly, I got the lead male role called Lysander! As a coincidence, Nimat is also in Drama Club! She plays the role of the Fairy. Rehearsals are held every Monday after school and Thursday at lunchtime. The actual play will be held in June and we are all very excited about it.

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Last but not least, I would like to welcome a new student that has recently joined us. His name is Furqan! It has been around two weeks since he started at our school and has settled in really well. Welcome to Shireland Hall Primary Academy, Furqan! I hope you enjoy your time with us!

I’m afraid that I’ll have to end the post here, guys. But, keep your eyes peeled for the next update about another special day that I’ll be writing shortly! Till we meet again, ciao everybody!

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P/S: I’m feeling a bit under the weather so it looks like no school for The Pawsome Lion tomorrow, which is like the end of the world for me!

*Media Source: Google Images*

A Quick Re-cap!

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Hey pawsome peeps! Yesterday was the last day of the Autumn term at school so that means today is officially the first day of the Winter Holiday! The school will be closed for two weeks and will be back open for the Spring term on Tuesday 5th January 2016. Phew, thank God! That means that I have time to celebrate Little Miss Diva’s 2nd birthday on the 3rd of January!

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I know that I haven’t kept you updated about school for a while now. Well, to be honest, as I can recall, I haven’t posted anything about school since the 8th of December which was two weeks ago! Sorry for that because my life has been hectic trying to keep up with my schedule. So, now, let me give you a quick re-cap about what’s been happening for the last two weeks!

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What was so pawsome about the 8th of December? Our very own Winter Event!! The event was held at my school, where there was plenty of space for millions of stalls and fun activities. Because the event was held on a school day, we had to have half a day at school and lots of children were looking forward to either go back home or come back to school for the Winter Event in the afternoon. And of course, no matter where they were, they would still be having fun. Now let me tell you a bit more about it…

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When it was the end of school, I went back home with Mr Dad to get changed and gather everything. Mrs Mom also said that we should take Little Miss Diva with us. At that point, I just froze and gawped! How am I supposed to take care of Little Miss Diva when she can’t even switch off her hyper mode for at least one whole minute? But I guessed that if I keep holding her hand tightly and make sure that she doesn’t let go then it will be fine.

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So, me, Mr Dad and Little Miss Diva collected what we would need to take to the Winter Event and set off. Unfortunately, Baby A couldn’t come with us because it was raining. At least it wasn’t raining when we reached school!

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When we arrived at our destination, the school looked pretty full to me. But, when me, Mr Dad and Little Miss Diva entered the building, it looked as if the whole school had attended the Winter Event! There was children as far as the eye could see. A big group of people were crowding around the face painting table, there was a long, ever-lasting line that looked like it would never end in front of the bouncy castle and children pushing and shoving to make sure that they could ride the donkeys.

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As always, every teacher had something to do. Can you guess what Miss Javed and Miss Hussain were doing? They had to look after the donkeys! 😀 I have to say though, they are real donkey friends! The donkeys would listen to what they both said and obey them. Another teacher called Mrs O’Conner, who is the teaching assistant in my Maths class, was in charge of face painting. She herself said that she was no good at face painting. So, she would just paint a red bauble on everyone’s cheeks! But, the next day, it turned out that Mrs O’Conner was really good at face painting. She could paint snowmen, snowflakes, trees and angels too!

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I asked Mrs O’Conner if she could paint a tree for me and away she went, with her tiny, little paintbrush wiping my skin. There was a splash of green first, then brown, black, red and blue. The finishing product looked really nice and authentic. Little Miss Diva also wanted her face to be painted so we asked another teacher who was at the face painting table to paint some snowflakes on her cheek. That teacher was Miss Mclean, my Maths teacher! The snowflakes looked good too! Little Miss Diva sat quietly through the painting process which is highly unusual for her. But, as soon as the painting was finished, the first thing that she did was rub the snowflakes off with her hands! Ugh, I knew it! Every time she does something that she doesn’t normally do, like BEHAVE, there will be something mischievous that she does after that! So, what a waste!!!

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Other things at the Winter Event also included a ton of candy floss, heaps of popcorn, the bounciest bouncy castle, fantastic candy canes, hundreds of mini games, food stalls for miles and the piece de resistance, A FIREWORK SHOW!!!!! Everybody who attended the amazing event had a great time and enjoyed themselves, especially me! Well done SHP for organising the great event!

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The next thing that happened at school was Year 4’s curriculum celebration which was on the 15th of December! It involved all three Year 4 classes which are Hazel, Aspen and Willow. If any of you don’t know, a curriculum celebration is a certain day which happens every half term when parents can come to school and find out what their child has been learning about and sometimes, they might be in for a treat! Mr Dad is very supportive and he never misses any important event including this curriculum celebration. This half term, we were learning about the Aztecs and Charlie and the Chocolate Factory! This time, we had a song, some children reading out some parts of a play, a display of artwork that we did and some other things too. On that day, me and Shreya were asked to bring our guitars in for the song that we would be singing! All of the parents and children enjoyed the curriculum celebration this term.

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Then, on Wednesday 16th December, my class made Aztec masks! Yep, incredible Aztec masks!!! We made these masks as part of our learning about Aztecs and chocolate this term. Making the masks were great fun. Some of the materials that we used to make our masks were:

  1. Black plastic masks
  2. Gloopy PVA glue
  3. Shiny gold pen/paint
  4. Dazzling silver pen/paint
  5. Metallic pink paint
  6. Metallic blue paint
  7. Metallic green paint
  8. Soft, bouncy foam
  9. Small coloured sticks
  10. Bendy pipe cleaners
  11. Fluffy feathers
  12. Glistening sequins
  13. Wiry mesh

My mask had gold, blue and pink paint with sequins, foam and feathers. There was also a curly pipe cleaner that went around its head. To me, it looked like a halo! The gold paint was really shiny and nearly blinded me! Nearly every mask in the class looked astounding. I hope that we get to do something like that again so that we could all show our artsy side!

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Next on the list is the special event that I’ve been looking forward to. It is…the Yes Smethwick Christmas Disco!!! Remember those Cluster Council meetings that I went to with Nimah at Victoria Park Primary Academy? We were busy organising the event and finally, it was the time to break the news. To tell everyone in Year 5 about the special event, me and Nimah prepared a speech and went into the two classes in Year 5 to tell them about it. However, I was glad to find out that I didn’t have to do any more work at the disco! On the day that the disco was held, some teachers started to give out the VIP Tickets to the first 20 people that brought their consent form in. Luckily, I was one of those 20 (more like 14) people that received a ticket. The ticket was as big as an A5 piece of paper! The disco was at Hadley Stadium and started at 4:00pm until 5:30pm. There was a DJ, free refreshments, balloons all around the place, bright, dazzling lights, party poppers and a face painting table! Everybody that attended the event had a great time! All was well and the disco was a success! I am really grateful for the opportunity to experience what it is like to organise an event and I am very proud to be part of the team. I hope everyone enjoyed working together to make this event a hit! If we ever organise an event like that again, I hope that it will be a triumph!

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Then, on Thursday, we had a fun day! It was a non-uniform day for my class only because we won the attendance competition! I told ya that our Miss Javed and Miss Hussain are AMAZING!!! They are so amazing that Hazel class didn’t miss a day of school for one whole week and we managed to beat the whole school in the competition! On that day, we had no work to do so instead, we went on the laptops and played on a Maths game called Manga High! We also watched the movie Cinderella, drank milkshakes and Miss Hussain even baked some cakes for us!!! They were super duper yummy and pawsome! I think that she is the BEST baker in the WORLD!!!!! Once again, well done Hazel for winning! A pat on the back for you!

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Last but not least is the last day of school! WOOHOO!! It was also Wear A Christmas Jumper To School Day on the same day so there were lots of festive clothes being worn by nearly everyone. Because it was the last day of school, my class had a party, we had Just Dance music on, we opened our presents from the Secret Santa game that Miss Javed organised and we did some festive activities to keep us merry. My Secret Santa was Uwais and thanks to him, I received a snap band watch which I’ve dreamt of! Thank you Uwais. I really appreciate it and I love the watch! There was also a performance that we did in the morning and once again, I had to bring my guitar in! The song that we were singing was called Santa Claus Is Coming To Town by Mariah Carey. Unfortunately, the music was not working and we had to sing without the music but our singing sounded great! At homee time, Miss Javed gave out some cards and candy canes to us and we all bade her goodbye.

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Happy holidays everyone! Make sure you use your two weeks wisely and don’t forget to make it fruitful! To those who celebrate Christmas, have fun with your loved ones! Till next time, Auf Wiedersehen!

 

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p/s: Hey Mrs Mom, are you ready to kick off our next special project? 😉

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*Media Source: Google Images*

AAATCHOO!!!!!

 

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Hey guys…aah…aah…TCHOO!!!!! Oops, sorry! I have a little cold which has been bothering me for the last couple of days. Anyway-cough, cough-today was not a very normal school day and that is because of a lot of things. One, I was sneezing and coughing a lot and two, the lessons weren’t like the lessons that we usually have. I’ll tell you all about it. Oh, sorry, wait a minute please! Aah…aah…TCHOO!!!!!

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Ahem, now, the first thing that we did was do the register. Then, we went off to our Maths classes. Maths today had a little twist to it. Our topic for Maths was data. Most people already knew about data. They knew the basics like bar charts, line graphs, pictograms and tally charts. But, as I said, the lesson had a little twist. We were going to…EAT CHOCOLATE!!! Aah…TCHOO!!!!! Sniffle, sniffle-sorry! Still can’t stop sneezing! Back to the point now, although we were tasting chocolate, we still had to do some work. But, the work was just filling out a table. The chocolate flavours were:

  1. Milk chocolate
  2. White chocolate
  3. Milk creations (milk chocolate, jelly beans and popping candy)
  4. Aero (mint)

And the worst of all…dark chocolate! Aah…aah…aah…TCHOO!!!!!

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My favourite chocolate was the Milk Creations.

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After Maths, we had our Literacy lesson and we were looking at newspapers. We were particularly focusing on articles. Hah, I’ve done about 3 or 4 articles already! Today, we were identifying the features of an article such as the headline, the by-line, the main body and so on. All of us had a little table to fill in. We also had to stick the article on an A3 piece of paper so that we could label it. Then, we went out for a break. Unfortunately, me and another boy called Krish couldn’t go out because we had a cold. That meant that we couldn’t play with our friends and to top that, we couldn’t play football with everyone else! 😦

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When everyone came back in, we carried on with our Literacy lesson. Then, it was time for lunch.

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For my lunch, I had:

  1. A veggie burger
  2. Peas
  3. Salad
  4. A flapjack
  5. Juice

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When lunch was over, we had a Learning Together lesson. In our lesson, we were designing our own Aztec Gods! These gods would then be transformed into masks like the Aztecs would wear except this time, we were going to wear it. Aah…aah…TCHOO!!!!! Ugh, sorry again. As I was saying, the Aztec God that I chose was the God of Fire. His name was Falalcholshcoaly (Fa-lal-col-shkol-lee). He had a Fire crown, a Fire cloth wrapped around his body, a Fire snake in one hand and a fireball in the other. The other Gods and Goddesses were pretty good. Some of them had 4 arms, others had long hair and others with unusual faces. After Learning Together was finished, it was home time.

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p/s: AAH…AAH…AAH…TCHOOOOOOO!!!!!!

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*Media Source: Google Images*

 

My Pawsome Smethwick!

History Day: Smethwick’s Heritage

On Tuesday 24th November, SHP will be celebrating History Day. The aim of the day is for us to understand and celebrate Smethwick’s heritage. To get involved, we have been given homework to interview a family member/member of the community who has lived in Smethwick for a long time. Since I’m a blogger, I thought “What could be a better way to present my findings than to dedicate a whole post to Smethwick?”

We’ve been given 4 sample questions that we could include such as:

  • Where in Smethwick have you lived?
  • Where have you worked?
  • Which school did you go to and what was it like?
  • How has Smethwick changed?

Based on those sample questions given, I managed to generate 21 of my own questions for the interview.

Interview Questions:.pdf

My Road to Smethwick

Because I don’t have any family members in Smethwick, I had to find a member of the community that was willing to share their life in Smethwick with me. So, I went out with Mr. Dad on Saturday and started to approach random people. What I did was introduce myself, gave them one of my name cards and explained to them the purpose of the interview. Now, this part was very challenging because most of the people that I approached either said that they are not from Smethwick or that they are simply too busy to spare their time for me.

The first place that I went to was Thimblemill Library. I asked a few people until I came across the affectionate Mr Noble. I managed to complete the whole interview session with him. However, he was only 29 years old and I would love to find out more about Smethwick back in the older days. So, out on the road, I went to my next destination which was Smethwick library. Unfortunately, I didn’t manage to find anyone but the good thing was that I found more information about Smethwick and some photos too.

After that, I went back to where I started, Bearwood Road. I visited the butchers but apparently, he was too busy. Fair enough, though, because it’s Saturday. As I stepped out of the butchers, I was feeling down. Little did I know, a miracle was about to happen. When I looked up, ‘Maureens Florist‘ sat in front of me. I entered the shop and there stood my heaven-sent Mrs Collier! She said “Yes” straight away and the interview session went smoothly. I enjoyed every single bit of her story.

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Who is Smethwick?

Did you know how Smethwick got it’s name? According to the Smethwick Heritage Centre, it was suggested that the name Smethwick meant “smiths’ place of work”, but a more modern interpretation has implied the name in fact means, “The settlement on the smooth land”. Smethwick was recorded in the Domesday book as Smedeuuich.

As I was doing my research, I found out that there are many notable residents that have lived in Smethwick. Most of these people were born in Smethwick. Some of them are:

 

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I. Sir Charles Douglas Fox (1840 – 1921)                                                              He was an English Civil Engineer who was born in Smethwick. Amongst other things, Sir Charles had designed The Crystal Palace in Hyde Park.

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II. Sydney Francis Barnes (1873 – 1967)                                                               He was an English professional cricketer who is generally regarded as one of the greatest ever bowlers.

 

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III. Ken Wharton (1916 – 1957)                                                                                He was a British racing driver. In 1957, Wharton was fatally injured when his Ferrari Monza crashed in a sports car race at the Ardmore Circuit in New Zealand.

And many more…

Out of all those notable residents, there was one person that really caught my attention. Personally, I adore her work very much. Remember the 89 individually sculptured owls which have been displayed all over Birmingham? Well, they were sculpted by the one and only Caroline Jariwala! She is a painter, visiting lecturer, exhibitions organiser and community artist. Her experience covers a wide range of art forms, such as illustration, batik, mural and mosaic.

“There is also something magically about mosaic-making with broken, chipped, discarded, rejected and second-hand crockery. Using the unwanted and making it desirable; transforming ‘ugly’ into a thing of ‘beauty’.” -Caroline Jariwala

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Not only these, but, there are lots of other great things that make Smethwick a unique place to live in. For example, Smethwick is also famous for it’s architecture, political history, transport history, and many other things. Smethwick is a wonderful place with sensational smells, tastes and sights. But how was it like in the past? Well, you are just about to find out. There were strict teachers that hit children with the cane, it was busy almost every day and there was a smell coming out of the famous Brewery that filled the air. Still, Smethwick was a great place to live in. But lots of things have changed about Smethwick. The teachers are less strict, the Brewery doesn’t exist anymore and we get less homework. But imagine if you could experience how Smethwick was in the 1990‘s or even further back to the 1970’s. Me and the people that I interviewed can help you with that. Here they are!

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My Heaven-sent Mrs Collier

Have you ever been to Maureens Florist in Bearwood? If yes, you might have met Mrs Collier. She has been a florist all her life. If you put her and flowers together, you will not be able to break them apart! This is her pawsome Smethwick:

“Hello! My name is Lynn Collier and I am 54 years old. I am married and I have two sons. My family have lived in Smethwick for approximately 60 years now. I am currently working as a florist and have worked as a florist in Northfield, Harborne and Quinton in the past. But, I am proud to be working at Maureens Florist because they have been serving the community of Smethwick for more than 40 years. I have lived in Bearwood, Gladys Road and Galton Road.”

“My primary school was called St Mary’s Primary School and my high school was called Dame Elizabeth Cadbury Senior School. I can still remember how lovely both of them were as if I was there yesterday. When I was 9 years old, the streets of Smethwick were busy almost everyday. And how could I forget the smells of the Brewery at Cape Hill that filled the air. In those days, going to school was really nice. It was safe and we had no worries. The teachers were very strict and there was lots of homework too. Naughty children got the cane but strictness is a good way to help them evolve into well-behaved children. Our uniform was brown and cream coloured with a touch of blue. My favourite subject was art because I love colour! I also liked pottery and history because I like to know about the good old days. One of the best teachers that I can remember is called Mrs Bared. I am actually still in touch with her until today. She was a lovely lady and a great teacher. I couldn’t possibly forget about the school lunch which was absolutely divine. My favourite pudding was called Chocolate Concrete.”

“In the past, there were lots of shops packed with hundreds of items and a range of houses just in front of the shops but now, there are lots of empty shops and houses scattered here and there. Some of the local shops that I remember visiting are Woolworths and my favourite Edward Toy Shop. In our spare time, me and my friends would play outside in the park. And last but not least, if I could keep one thing about Smethwick for the future generation to see, I would definitely keep Lightwoods Park with the old, big house and clock because that is a part of Smethwick’s heritage that we should all preserve!”

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My Affectionate Mr. Noble

That was the interview with Mrs Lynn Collier. Now, moving on, the next person that I interviewed was a man called Mr Noble. He is a librarian at Thimblemill Library in Smethwick. Here is what he said in the interview:

“Hello there! I am Richard Noble and I am 29 years old. My dad is from Birmingham and my mum is from North Yorkshire. They met when they were both studying at the University of Liverpool. I have lived in Smethwick for most of my life. I have lived around Bearwood next to Warley Woods and I love it! I have two jobs: one was as an admin assistant for NHS and the other one is Sandwell MBC Library Service. I am also an artist in my spare time. I have worked all across Sandwell and Birmingham.”

“The first school that I went to was called Abbey Junior and Infants School. Later, I went to Warley High School which is now known as Oldbury Academy. Then, I went to Halesowen College, Bourneville College of Art and also Birmingham City University. Smethwick is a nice area, quite cultural and is ethnically diverse even then. When I was 9 years old, I used to have many friends which I am still in touch with until now but some of them have moved away. Back in my days, the teachers were alright. A few were strict and the others were eccentric. In primary school, we wore blue jumpers or cardigans with the school logo in yellow with sensible trousers and shoes. I liked art because I was always creative and I liked history too. I also enjoyed Maths. One of the best teachers in primary school was called Mrs Brown. She was truly inspiring! School in those days were pretty much the same as it is now. The school lunches were quite like the school lunches we have now. It was either packed lunch or school meals. The only difference is what is on the lunch box.”

“When I was a child, I remember visiting lots of shops in Smethwick but my all time favourite would be none other than Woolworths. They had lots of toys and sweets inside their shop. Some of the businesses have come and gone. Even though Smethwick was already ethnically diverse, more groups from different ethnical backgrounds arrived over time. Whenever me and my friends had nothing to do, we would play sports games, play video games, watch tv and watch videos but we didn’t use YouTube, we used VHS. I bet modern kids have no idea what VHS is! I also loved reading. Books have always been my passion. Finally, if I could keep one thing about Smethwick to be in the future, it would be the parklands because they do so much to enhance local residence lives.”

The Grand Finale

That’s the end of Mr Noble’s interview. These two people have been kind enough to give up some of their time to be interviewed, therefore, I would like to give them a big thank you. I really appreciate their stories of Smethwick that they have shared with me.

Having heard the stories of their pawsome life in Smethwick, I wish that I had the time machine from the movie Back to the Future. Maybe I could be McFly and Mr. Dad could be “Doc” and we both could travel back in time. If I can go back to the 1970’s, I wish that I could smell how the air was like at Cape Hill. I could even sit down with Mrs Collier during lunch time at school and enjoy the taste of divine Chocolate Concrete. Perhaps both me and Mrs Collier could spend time together at her favourite Edward Toy Shop. How pawsome would that be. If I could go back to the 1990’s, I will surely join Mr Noble and his friends watching videos on the VHS! (In my dreams…)

I wish that one day, someone could invent the time machine for real because it would be a great and fun way for children to learn if they could travel back in time. They will not just be looking at photos and reading information, they’ll actually be living it! Oh, and a note to the teachers, think of it as a school trip!

Last but not least, sit back and enjoy a poem written by me which is dedicated to Smethwick.

My Pawsome Smethwick

My pawsome Smethwick,

What would I do without it?

It’s great, 

Ain’t it, mate?

It’s a county,

In a city,

In a country,

In the world!

At night, everyone’s snuggled up and curled

And when it’s day,

They’ll put France in a beret!

There’s shops galore on one street,

Some of them sell meat

And if you come and they’re all sold out,

Most of you will start to pout!

And all of this is in…

MY PAWSOME SMETHWICK!!! (#No.1)

by: The Pawsome Lion (Sunday, 22nd November 2015)

Here comes the grand finale! I would like to present a video of my PAWSOME Smethwick shot by Mr. Dad. Here it goes!

p/s: I really enjoyed learning about local history and I hope everyone else did too!

p/p/s: Special thanks to Mr Dad for the Pawsome video and a Roarsome thank you to Mrs Mom for always believing in me!!

Word Count: 2,225

Reference:

  1. Smethwick Library
  2. Smethwick Heritage Centre
  3. http://www.smethwick-heritage.co.uk
  4. Wikipedia
  5. The Bearwood Blog (bearwoodblog.com)
  6. We Love Bearwood (welovebearwood.blogspot.com)
  7. We are Bearwood (www.wearebearwood.org)
  8. http://www.carolinejariwala.co.uk
  9. Media Source: Google Images & TPL

APPENDIX

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My Pawsome Tuesday!

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Greetings, pawsome peeps! How’s it going? Hope that everything’s well.

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This morning, when I walked into the class, Miss Javed and my mates were discussing about the article that I wrote on leadership.Surprise, surprise! We read it through and talked about certain points in there. Then, Miss Javed printed it so we could put it up on our SMSC (spiritual, moral, social and cultural development) wall. I felt so honoured to have my article displayed on the wall. It’s really worth all the hard work that I put into it. I felt thankful to Miss Javed for the opportunity and recognition that she has given me! I really appreciate it and will use this to drive myself towards my goal in life. I will not forget to take Hazel with me on my journey to reach the stars! What a great way to start my morning, huh? 😀

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After all the morning hoo-ha, we moved on to Literacy. Literacy was really interesting. We got to use thesauri for the first time (well, at least it was most of the children’s first time)!  My group had to think of 7 simple adjectives and find better words for them in the thesaurus. I managed to think of 6 words and find 3 or 4 words for each of them.

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Then we had a break. When we came back in, it was time for Maths. We all went to our groups to start the lesson. In my group, we had to do equivalent fractions. Some of the children in ‘GO’ group groaned and said “Aww! 😦 “. But we had no choice and had to get on with it. As usual, we managed to answer all the questions.

Then it was lunch time. For my lunch, I had:

  1. A Southern fried veggie burger
  2. Sweetcorn
  3. Salad
  4. Apple pie
  5. Juice

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By the time lunch had finished, everybody could not calm down. It’s hard to calm down when you’ve just had a break, especially when you’ve played an exciting game. At last, everyone managed to simmer down.  Then, Miss Javed proceeded with the register. After the register, Miss Javed said that we would be… MAKING COMPASSES!!! Everybody whooped “Yay!” and leaped up off their seats. Then the phone started to ring. Miss Hussain went to answer it. When she came back, she told me something. There was going to be an exciting event. It was… me and Nimah’s 2nd council meeting!

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Once again, we repeated the journey that we did before. We collected Nimah, picked up the other children from the other schools and arrived at Victoria Park Primary Academy. Then, we gathered our visitor stickers again and went through to the meeting room. We then said hello to the teacher that was hosting the meeting. After that, we said our names so the teacher could put our names on the register. The next thing that we had to do was to re-cap on what we did last week.

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Firstly, we talked about what qualities a good leader has. We went round the table and shared our ideas.Then, we put forward some points about why we think that so and so is good or why so and so is bad.

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Then, we started talking about the Christmas disco again. We talked about the letter for it and the invitation. We were then split into 2 groups. One group would be making the invitation and the other one would be writing the letter. I was in the group that was making the invitation. I really wanted to be in this group because I’m really good at designing things. We managed to get the whole invitation done just in time. On it we had a gold background, a title, a border, pictures and writing of course!

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At the end of the meeting, I gave out some of the name cards that Dr. Auntie made for me. Everyone liked them and said “Wow!”. Then, Nimah asked the teacher if we would be going to Parliament in London. The teacher replied “Yes. It has always been our tradition to go to Parliament every year.” Having heard this, the whole school council shouted “Whoo hoo!!”. Finally, it was time to go back to school sweet school.

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When I got back to my class, the science lesson was already finished. I had missed the experiment! But luckily, we got to take the kit that we needed to make the compass at home. I was so relieved when I heard this.

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At the end of the day, I went down to Keyboard Club. When we were practicing the song that we were learning, Lean on Me, everyone managed to play it once again! Around of applause for everyone in the club! Because we could play it from start to finish, we started to learn a new song called Stay with Me. Some of us managed to play the first line of the song just before home time.

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Then, I went home with Mr. Dad and spent some time with Little Miss Diva and Baby ‘A’ coz they are both poorly. 😦 As you can see, my writing is getting even more boring by the second because I am half asleep. I think that I should stop here before I make everyone else fall asleep! Good night! Don’t let the bed bugs bite!! 😉

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p/s: sorry that I couldn’t reply to your email, Nimah. I was doing my writing and it was getting very late. So, I had to get ready for bed. But, I look forward to see you tomorrow in pyjamas! 😀

*Media Source: Google Images*

 

I love my new self!

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Hi pawsome peeps! What’s up? Do you like the new me? A big fat PAWSOME thanks to my uncle for the makeover! I’m lovin’ it!! 😉

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As some of you might have noticed, Sunday is my day off. I have decided that once a week, I will have a one-day holiday. So, I will not be posting anything on Sunday. I will just be replying to comments and so on. If I have time, I might watch a movie too! It’s kinda like freedom for a day, I guess.

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Sadly, Dr. Auntie has left (AGAIN!! 😡 ) So, I need to be back to reality. But, I just can’t seem to get out of my honeymoon mood. Luckily, I got back to my normal self just in time for school. But for me, school was boring and I usually like school. 😐 Maybe it was because we didn’t do anything interesting or exciting. There’s always a downside in everyone’s lives, though. It happens every once in a while.

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Anyway, there’s nothing much to talk about school but it might be better tomorrow coz I’ve got Keyboard Club! There’s bound to be something PAWSOME happening then. I might teach the class again or maybe all of us could play the whole song together! Who knows what future has in store for me? I’ve also got two meetings to attend tomorrow. One is the second Student Council Meeting and the other one is the first meeting for the boys only writing club. Busy days for me! I’ll let you know what’s happened tomorrow in my post. Until then, goodbye!!

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p/s: Still can’t get over how good I look now!!! 😀

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*Media Source: Google Images & TPL*