Our inspirational class icons
At Alexandra Park we are passionate about celebrating diversity. One way in which we do this is through the inspirational people chosen to represent our classes. Each class has a person either from the past or present who we feel our young people can aspire to be like. The people chosen have been those that we feel represent our core values of Care, Aspire and Achieve as well as representing the diverse modern day in which we live. The children study their person and learn all of the incredible things that he/she/they have achieved. See our class icon displays in our photo gallery.
I chose Tim Peake to be our class's inspirational person as he demonstrates our school values of Care, Aspire and Achieve and he is a fantastic role model for our young people. Tim has proven that hard work, bravery and dreaming big can lead to exceptional achievements in life.
Tim Peake is a British astronaut who spent six months living and working on the International Space Station (ISS) in 2015/16. He was the first British astronaut to board the ISS, a laboratory 400 kilometres from Earth. Tim’s mission has engaged more than two million students in outreach activities. He is a champion for Science and Innovation and he is an ambassador for STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) Education, The Prince’s Trust and the Scout Association. He is a best-selling author, with proceeds from his book donated to The Prince’s Trust.
Tim is passionate about inspiring young people to dream big and work hard to achieve their goals. I have chosen two quotes from Tim Peake that I feel link with our school values. “We are a Team and we work hard together. We are all equal to each other”. “Don’t let anybody tell you you can’t do anything”.
I hope that sharing Tim Peake’s achievements will inspire our young children to dream big, work hard and value teamwork to help achieve their goals.
I chose Julia Donaldson to be our class’s inspirational person as she continues to provide children with the enjoyment and pleasure of reading her fun, imaginative stories! Julia is passionate about encouraging children to perform more poetry and plays and instils a love of reading through her books! As a young girl, she aspired to be an author and wrote stories on the back of envelopes for others. Since then, Julia has written over 150 books that have been enjoyed by children all over the world! To celebrate her achievements, she has received the Children’s Laureate and an MBE from the Queen for her outstanding contributions to literature. Her fantastic achievements remind us to never give up on our passions and dreams!
As well as being an award-winning author, Julia reminds us of the importance of showing care for others. As a child, she demonstrated this through selling bluebells from her friend’s garden to raise money for Save the Children. She became their first ever ‘Fun Raiser’ and has now launched a new fundraising campaign to encourage children from all over the United Kingdom to use their creativity to raise money and provide smiles for others!
Through exploring Julia’s life, we recognise how she demonstrates our core values of ‘Care, Aspire, Achieve’ and provides us with the inspiration to do this too!
I chose Florence Nightingale to be our class's inspirational person as throughout her nursing career, she demonstrated our school values of Care, Aspire, Achieve and she continues to have a significant impact on our lives today. Florence showed great determination to ensure she could achieve her dream of being a nurse. She cared for many wounded soldiers during several wars and she aspired to make a difference to the future by opening the first professional nursing school. Florence made a significant change within her work by ensuring that all hospitals and health centres were clean and free of germs. This legacy continues today, as recent as the COVID-19 pandemic, when cleanliness was extremely important. Through teaching Florence's life, we can encourage our young people to never give up on their dreams and to believe they can make a difference to the wider world.
Marcus cares, aspires and achieves in all that he does. He has trained from a young age to become an amazing footballer. Using his determination, he has overcome many challenges in his football career.
During lockdown, Marcus worked with a food charity to ensure that no child would go hungry. He also wrote a letter to the government asking them to help families during the holidays. He was awarded an MBE for his fantastic efforts.
During the Euros 2022, Marcus and two other players unfortunately missed their penalties. Sadly, after this event, the players experienced racism from some people. However, most people came out to support Marcus and drew positive attention to the ‘No Room for Racism’ campaign.
In our class, we have agreed that we can ‘be more like Rashford’ by helping others, working hard and standing up for what we believe in.
I chose Ellie Simmonds to be our class's inspirational person as she demonstrates our school values of Care, Aspire and Achieve and she is a fantastic role model for our young people.
At the age of 13 she was the youngest Paralympic swimmer to achieve a gold medal in the Paralympics. She is currently an aspiring dancer as she is appearing on Strictly Come Dancing showing the world her talents on the dance floor and not just in the swimming pool! She shows care by being an ambassador for Water Aid, raising awareness and funds for this much needed charity. More recently Ellie has also become a children's author.
Through studying Ellie's life our young people can learn a lot from her outlook on life, determination and resilience and ultimately be inspired.
I chose Greta Thunberg to be our class's inspirational person as she has achieved some incredible things at such a young age thanks to her determination, resilience and passion.
At just 15, she started to strike as a way of making herself heard and encouraging other people. She has since inspired more than a million people to strike for climate change, showing that when people work together, we can have a huge impact. Greta famously said "You are never too small to make a difference", which teaches our children that even at a young age, they can have the power to change the world! Greta has Asperger's Syndrome and believes that being different is a superpower, which inspires our children to be proud of their individuality and unique skills.
By learning about Greta Thunberg, children learn how they can have a positive impact on the wider world and about the importance of standing up for what they believe in.
I chose Emeline Pankhurst to be our class’s inspirational person as she demonstrates our school values of Care, Aspire and Achieve. Throughout her life she showed great determination, collaboration, curiosity and independence through her achievements, although sometimes not always conventional! These are just some of the behaviours we want our children to demonstrate at Alex Park.
Emmeline Pankhurst is one of the most influential people of the 20th century. She was a British woman who fought for women's right to vote and was one of the leaders of the Suffragette movement. She founded the Women's Social and Political Union (WSPU) in 1903, which would become the foundation of the Suffragette movement. At this time, women were regarded as inferior to men. Consequently, they weren't allowed to vote, own property, have important jobs and their education was deemed to be insignificant compared to men's. Her daughters, Christabel and Sylvia, both passionately campaigned for the Suffragette movement too.
Through learning about Emmeline’s life and how she tirelessly campaigned for equality and fairness for others, I hope she continues to inspire our children to think about themselves and what they can achieve in their own lives.
I chose Sir David Attenborough to be our class's inspirational person because he embodies our school values of Care, Aspire and Achieve and his tenacious desire to explore and be curious about the natural world is something our children can aspire to.
A celebrated broadcaster and conservationist, he has risen from his first role as a trainee producer to becoming one of the most famous natural history TV presenters and narrators! For over 60 years, Sir David Attenborough has brought the wonders of the natural world to our screens and into our homes, completely transforming our view of the wild world. He continues to present and narrate natural history documentaries, such as Frozen Planet II, The Green Planet and Dynasties II for the BBC. Sir David Attenborough has educated the world on the threats that face our planet in the imminent future and has encouraged action for our planet's most precious species and fragile habitats.
His passion for wildlife and its protection is something that can inspire our children as they are the future generation; the ones who can be determined to make changes because, in the words of Sir David Attenborough, “the future of humanity and indeed all life on earth depends on us.”
I chose Frida Kahlo to be our class's inspirational person as she demonstrates our learning behaviours of determination, creativity and pride.
Despite contracting polio at a very early age and being in a horrific traffic accident when she was 18, she defied the odds to not only survive but thrive. She was confined to bed for much of her life yet she found a way to paint with a special easel which hung over her bed. Frida was the first 20th-Century Mexican artist to have work featured in The Louvre art gallery in France. In 1953, shortly before she died, her work was exhibited in an art gallery in Mexico City. Sadly, her doctor told her she must stay in bed. Ever creative, Frida had friends lift her on a stretcher and carry her into the gallery, making a grand entrance!
Through studying Frida's life our young people can learn a lot from her outlook on life, determination and resilience and ultimately be inspired.
Our class is named after Malala Yousafzai. Malala is known for standing up for equal rights.
Growing up in Pakistan under Taliban rule, many girls were stopped from going to school. When she selflessly spoke out about it, she put herself in great danger. Malala shows great courage and determination in continuing to stand up for what she believes in.
Despite nearly losing her life, she has remained positive, which makes her a great role model for children and an inspiration to us all.
“Ability may get you to the top, but it takes character to keep you there.” – Stevie Wonder
Stevie Wonder started his professional music career at the age of eleven in 1961, when he signed with Motown Records. This is important when considering why Stevie was chosen as our class icon. This is because this date is at the height of the black civil rights movement in the USA, a time when racial segregation and negativity towards black artists was still rife. At the end of the 1950s, there was virtually no representation of black artists on the radio apart from the odd dedicated ‘Black Music Hour’. So, not only was Stevie a child breaking into an adult world, he was black child and, of course, was blind also. As the initial quote shows, he had character – character that would see him succeed because of who he was not in spite of them.
He has sold over 100 million records and won numerous awards, which is all tantamount to his hard work and dedication. However, it doesn’t stop there. Stevie has used his platform and voice to speak out against inequality – his song Happy Birthday was written and released as a tool to have Martin Luther King Jr’s birthday recognised as a national holiday in the USA. He also advocated for the end of apartheid in South Africa. Beyond this, his long career has reflected his concern with humanitarian issues - he has done work in support of diabetes research, supported numerous charities for AIDS, famine, cancer (his work with Multiple Myeloma Research Foundation is quite well-known). Because of all of this, he was designated as a United Nations Messenger of Peace in 2009 with a focus on persons with disabilities.
No matter how you look at it, Stevie Wonder embodies our school values and our learning behaviours – I think we would all do better if we were all a little more Stevie Wonder.
I believe that if Michelle Obama were to visit Alexandra Park Primary School, she would be excited to find a school which shares her values through and through. This makes her a great role model for our children.
Before her rise to fame during her time in the White House, she was already an accomplished lawyer, writer and community activist. She stood out as one of the most passionate and powerful First Ladies in history because of her humour, honesty, compassion and inspiring speech-making. Her caring nature has led her to campaign for better health and education for people from all walks of life – especially girls and those from disadvantaged backgrounds. At Alexandra Park, the children’s voices and opinions are highly valued and Michelle found her voice at a very young age too. She resisted unhelpful advice from adults who suggested she should lower her expectations of herself and instead set her aspirations high. Through hard work and determination, she achieved remarkable things! She speaks very persuasively about the behaviours that she believes will help people to thrive. They align fantastically with the Alexandra Park learning behaviours: determination, curiosity, collaboration, independence, pride and creativity. Unafraid to speak candidly about making mistakes and learning from them, she reminds children of the importance of being brave and using challenges to fuel growth.
In addition to all of this, the children of today can really appreciate the way she has dealt with the prejudice she has faced as a black woman. It provokes valuable discussions in the classroom that have given me real hope for the progress and direction that our young people will steer our society towards.
Alan Turing was chosen for our class as a figure who embodies the Alexandra Park values of ‘Care, Aspire, Achieve’.
He was a fabulous mathematician, aspiring to be the top in his field. Alan cared about his country and was instrumental in WWII, helping the Allied forces decipher encrypted messages. Not only that, but because he worked so hard at his running, he nearly qualified for the Olympics which was a fantastic achievement!
Throughout his life, he put his all into everything he did and demonstrates to our young people that dedication to your dreams leads to a fantastic life!
Nelson Mandela was chosen as our class’ inspirational figure due to his unwavering desire to make the world a better place. He exemplifies many characteristic traits which we try to help our pupils develop across their journey in our school.
Despite the adversity and many challenges, he faced in his fight for equality, Nelson Mandela remained resilient, empathetic, patient and determined to secure peace and the end of racial segregation. Throughout apartheid, Mandela was an activist who fought for change and human rights. In 1994, history was made when Nelson Mandela was elected to become the first black president of South Africa.
His compassion for others - alongside what he achieved in his life – matches our school values and provides the children with a constant reminder of what can be accomplished when you believe in something so passionately, work hard and persevere even when things are challenging.