“Now, the Star-Belly Sneetches Had bellies with stars. The Plain-Belly Sneetches Had none upon thars. Those stars weren’t so big. They were really so small, You might think such a thing wouldn’t matter at all. But, because they had stars, all the Star-Belly Sneetches Would brag, “We’re the best kind of Sneetches on the beaches.” With their snoots in the air, they would sniff and they’d snort “We’ll have nothing to do with the Plain-Belly sort!” And whenever they met some, when they were out walking, They’d hike right on past them without even talking.”
Good Afternoon Mr Browning, Chairman of the Council Mr Thorpe, Mrs Taylor, Distinguished Guests, Staff, Parents and boys.
That opening quote is from one of my favourite stories as a young child being “The Sneetches By Dr Seuss”. This story goes as follows; At the beginning some Sneetches have stars on their bellies, and some don’t. The Sneetches without stars desperately want one, whilst the ones with a star, look down upon those with bare bellies. One day a sneaky businessman, Sylvester McMonkey McBean, comes into town and offers those without stars a chance to get them, but for a hefty price. To become popular all starless Sneetches quickly agree to this deal. Aghast the Sneetches originally with stars now want their own stars removed, in order to be special again. McBean gives them this chance, for an even bigger price, which again, they all agree to. This goes for a while longer with Sneetches adding and removing stars trying to become someone different to themselves. When night falls after a whole day of this cycle the Sneetches give up having forgotten whether it was better to have a star or not, the only winner being the now millionaire, Sylvester McMonkey McBean.
To all of you who have a star on your belly. Just because you’re good at something, doesn’t mean you can put others who aren’t down. Everyone has different talents and if someone hasn’t found theirs yet you are in no right to give them a hard time about it. Treat everyone with the most kindness possible no matter how many stars. Having a star on your belly doesn’t make you special or better, we’re all still just humans inside.
To all of the boys who don’t have stars on their bellies, if you have ever wished to be better at Sport, or Music, or Math, Robotics, Reading, Handball, or wished you were Taller, Shorter, Stronger, Smarter and of course better at Fortnite.
There will always be another star you wish you had on your belly. There have definitely been times when I wished I was taller and stronger or didn’t need to get glasses or braces when I’m older. I’m still comfortable with who I am. I am who I am, and you are who you are. Don’t worry if you are a bare-bellied Sneetcher, because there is absolutely nothing wrong with that. Don’t let another Sylvester McMonkey McBean tell you that you’re missing something and need fixing or ask you to pay in order to change this. Be happy with you and who you are, because you run into enough trouble as just one person, let alone pretending to be 2 or even 3 different people as well. It doesn’t matter whether or not you have a star, be happy and comfortable with who you are.
As a Junior School we should try to stay as far away from as possible from the Sneetches Storyline. Not a single character in the book is doing what I believe everyone should aim for, in which no one tries to change who you are. Whoever created this wonderful world made each and everyone of us for a reason. Pretending to be someone else would surely throw off some of these plans.
Before I conclude, I would like to thank everyone who gave me this unbelievable opportunity as Captain. First to Mrs Taylor and Mr Storer, leading me along and guiding me through this fantastic journey. To Sam and Rushan for helping us with great leadership displays all throughout the year. A special thanks to Ryan for being an amazing partner. You’ve truly been a great friend supporting me in everything we’ve done throughout the course of the year.
I’d also like to take this opportunity to thank everyone who has guided me through my Junior School Journey, particularly my teachers who have sparked my interest in learning and have always cared about me. To the year 6 cohort and all the friends I have. Without you guys school wouldn’t be as fun and I look forward to experiencing the Senior School with you. To my parents for just, well, everything. I won’t stand here listing off all the wonderful things you do but please understand how deeply grateful I am to you both. I would also like to wish next year’s Junior School Captain’s good luck and I’m sure you will lead the boys well. As a final word to all the Junior School Students “Don’t let Success get to your head, or failure get to your heart.” Thank You.
Junior School Captain