Messages and News from John & the Team: Friday 23rd September
Hello there, again – hope life and term are progressing well for all of you,
Well, we’re getting into the swing of things now, which I always prefer, and I’m just about remembering who is in who’s class and what room they are in now too! It was only a four-day week in school, and I hope that your Monday went well for you, whatever you did
There are a few aspects we are going to work very hard on this year, and I want them to be a regular feature of the Blog, as well as our old favourites like Outdoor Learning, Stars of the Week and so on. Reading is gong to be one of our major priorities this year, and we’ll talk about that whenever we can with you – check out the Book Fair this week. Another thing we are really going to emphasise is Personal Development, which covers a lot of ground, but everything from health to careers, e-safety, wellbeing, social stuff and lots of other similar areas. It isn’t that we haven’t been doing these things before (!) it’s more that we want to make them even better. So we’ll try to reflect that in the blog each week
Please also don’t forget Eileen’s blog which has a different flavour to this one, and the information we put out there on e-safety too, which I know a lot of you appreciate
Have a lovely weekend, and I hope you enjoy the stories and updates that follow. All the best. J
Now, it isn’t a blog without some Outdoor Learning in it, so here we are for this week! This is from Hannah T
This half term we are combining Outdoor Learning and Design & Technology for our KS3 classes. For the past two sessions we have been looking at ways we can decorate the new (and wonderful) shelter and have come up with the idea of creating some nature bunting. The students have been looking at using tools safely to create the bunting, as it has involved looking at the different coloured leaves and then using a hammer and some cloth to hit all the lovely chlorophyl (the pigment that give leaves their colour) out of the leaf to create a print. Here are some of the pieces that Starlings have started to create during their 1st session. Sadie managed to complete this completely independently and was very proud of her brilliant work
As you can see from the photos, some of the staff even enjoyed themselves during the lesson
Next week we will look at different patterns and colours and they will have a go a creating a template to shape their bunting before putting it all together to decorate the shelter
Staying with Outdoor Learning, and why wouldn’t you, Leon from Puffins loved exploring the new outdoor hut, especially spying out of the window and feeling the different textures of the leaves. He discovered that there is a fantastic echo in the hut so made a lot of noise! Have a look
As well as Outdoor Learning being one of our favourite things, so of course is Reading, and we want that to be a regular feature this year too. The first thing is that we have had a Book Fair all week, and it’s been lovely to see students going up and choosing books – all sorts were available, whatever your thing was!
It was a really nice atmosphere, and in the library at the front of school. Classes and individuals visited
The pupils have also been doing fab things like Book Reviews!
And Becky F, our Literacy Lead, is going to keep us up-to-date with everything. This is this week’s news from Becky
Reading and Phonics
It’s been really lovely to see how much progress many students have maintained with their reading over the long summer break, and we’ve got lots of exciting plans in place to continue to prioritise and celebrate reading this year!
Parents/Carers of students following our phonics programme, Essential Letters and Sounds, should have received a letter today regarding reading at home. We’re keen to find out what works for you in terms of reading at home and how we can best support this – so please complete the reply slip and send that back in next week, or if you’d prefer please complete the form online here: https://forms.gle/wCv628F2nCeMLYBL8
For Parents/Carers of students on the Engagement Curriculum Pathway, a group of staff attended a number of training sessions in the summer term exploring inclusive reading, which gave teams further ideas about how to share a love of reading with all students within the school. As part of our focus this term we will be looking more closely at what literacy looks like within the Engagement Pathway, and can’t wait to share some examples of the brilliant practice that goes on
Reading is one of the key parts of our Improvement Plan this year, and I’ll talk about that more each week as the year progresses. It’s one of the most important parts of the school, and a real priority for all of us
STARS!!! of the Week!!!!!
ELTBA – Starling of the Week!
This week in ELTBA we would like to give our star of the week to Joe in Starlings. Joe is new to PH but has settled in so well and made lovely friends with his peers. He is always trying his best and is loving “cracking jokes” with people. We often can just hear him laughing away in the classroom, which is lovely to hear. A great start for Joe! Well done, Joe, it’s hard to be new, and this makes you one of our 100% STAR(LING)S!!!
Megan from Herons!
Megan has had a fantastic week, engaging in all activities and communicating very well with staff. Well done Megan, it’s great to have you around and you of course a complete STAR!!!
Makaton Signs of the Week
And after a week of big emotions here are some signs to reflect those feelings…let us know how you get on with these
Translations: Happy (keep thumbs down), Sad, Worried, Angry, Excited.
Finally: The Queen
The PSHE Team have continued with their reactive teaching and opportunities this week to reflect what’s been going on in the country, teaching things around the queen, who she was/what her job was and her achievements, and then some teaching around the new king, who he is and the changes that will take place. As well as talking about practical changes, such as to the anthem, stamps and the like, we have as we often do taken a key vocabulary approach
- head of state
- state funeral
- Queen consort
- state funeral
And here are some of those website addresses again
There’s been a display in tribute to the queen where students could leave messages, etc
The Wellbeing Team have been available for any students needing extra support managing their feelings around this
There are some links in respect of the Queen’s passing which may be of assistance in answering questions that the children may ask. It’s perhaps more relevant to many children and young people than it may have once been as most schools participated in Jubilee celebrations back in May and saw all the national partying. Children may not ask in lessons but in other locations and during other activities, and sometimes little questions can seem hard to answer
This responsive teaching and learning, and Louise B our Educational Psychologist’s support, around British Values, changes that happen in life, and addressing the future, within PSHE over the next two weeks will mean that we are there for our children & students at this time
(Just in case you weren’t aware or had forgotten: PSHE = Personal, Social, Health Education – another one of our favourite subjects here)
All the very best to all of you, from all of us here
John & The Team
We’re all really looking forward to seeing you all here at our Coffee & Catch-up sessions, Consultation Afternoons, and other times too, this term. We’ll see you all soon in school hopefully for various things. Take care!