Mrs Bickersteth’s Week in Review 16th June 2017

The school has been a hive of activity over the past fortnight. We enjoyed Year 5H’s class assembly last week which shared lots of information about the children’s learning throughout the year, presented in a series of amusing sketches which the children had prepared. The acting and team work shown was super to see.
The whole school Summer Concert last week presented an excellent array of musical performances, showing the range of talents which are developed at school. A huge thank you to Mrs Romero Fernandez and Mrs Sillett for organising this concert.

The new Sept 17 Reception children have successfully had their induction days. In a Read Write Inc parent information session this week, children form the Nursery and Reception class, showed parents how their phonics lessons took place, modelling the structured and fun way in which they build up a strong foundation of reading skills. The children had great focus and confidence. Parents were also able to view the Early Years setting. The reading age for all Reception children is 1 year above expected for their age which means that they have a head start when they move into Year 1. The experiences that the children have in our Nursery and Reception class are fantastic, with children enjoying being taught by specialist teachers for some subjects, including music, PE and modern foreign languages.

The Nursery Sports day at the end of last week took place on a sunny day and all the children happily joined in a range of activities, including shark attack, ball skills, parachute activities and an egg and spoon race. It was great to see so many families attending, and there were a large number of parents and relatives who ran in the adult egg and spoon race. Thank you to the PE staff for organising this and also it was great to see the Year 10 senior pupils helping so well to run the activities with the Nursery children. I remember some of the Year 10 pupils from when I taught them in the Junior School – it is great to see they have grown up and continuing on their successful journey through CHS.

The CHSA Summer fete after school on Friday June 23rd had a fantastic atmosphere, against the backdrop of a lovely sunny afternoon’s weather. All the children’s stalls were run with enthusiasm and it was an added bonus for everyone to be able to see some of the children’s singing and Irish Dancing too at the fete. Thank you to the CHSA and all the volunteers who helped at the fete.

This week started with a day of transition, with all classes moving up for the afternoon to experience being in the classrooms for their new year group and meeting the teachers in the next year group. Year 6 pupils moving to Seniors spent the whole day in Year 7 for their induction day. There will be an evening early on in the Autumn Term when you will be able to come and meet all the teachers and receive more information about the routines for the year group. For the Year 3 intake, there is also a parent information session on Tuesday 4th July.

This week the whole school has been buzzing with excitement and creativity during curriculum week, which had the theme of “Try something different”. The staff have worked hard on preparing a range of creative activities for the children. Two events which were a huge success with the children were the “Bugman” and the “Science Boffins” workshops, both of which were provided for all the children in the Lower School. These two events were kindly funded by the CHSA. This meant that there were children from Nursery upwards getting up close with Lucy the tarantula, various cockroaches and stick insects. There are clearly some fearless children in the school and all the children saw for themselves how fascinating these bugs are. The science workshops were incredibly funny but also included lots of learning. Prep and Nursery had a plant workshop, whilst the Juniors had a plasma ball and playful polymers workshop. The Year 6 children had been given a homework in advance of curriculum week which involved trying something new and it has been interesting to hear from the children about the challenges they did. They are presenting their homework to their peers in the final session of the week. There have been so many different things taking place as part of curriculum week that it is not possible to mention all of them. However, in the assemblies at the end of the week, children shared some of their experiences which had included:

• Year 4 did weaving to create pieces of artwork; learnt about the solar system and made models of the planets; experienced a geography lesson led by Year 6 pupils; had some food technology lessons , making sweet treats

• Year 3 performed “A Midsummer Night’s Dream” in a lovely barn setting; made some cakes; did some code breaking; created artwork

• Year 5 designed tie-dye items; created robotic arms out of recyclable materials; tried meditation; created wire and papier mache figure sculptures

• Year 6 tried yoga;

• Year 2 – had activities on the theme of China and Year 1 did activities on the theme of Jamaica. This included artwork; making paper kimonos; food technology; singing and dancing and creating haiku poetry.

• Reception – enjoyed going to the Mercury theatre to see the play “The Gruffalo” and loved the bug man and science workshops

Even as I write this blog, the carousel of final day activities is in full swing in the Juniors, with children taking part in activity sessions in house groups, which has meant that children are working with different ages and not just within their year group, whilst also getting to experience time with all the teachers in the Junior School. Years 1,2 and Reception are also having a special presentation session in the afternoon today, when the children will explain to the others what they have been doing this week.

I am looking forward to seeing the whole school Art Exhibition this evening, which will showcase artwork from Senior and Lower School, including some of the original works created this week.

I do hope that you have a wonderful weekend with your families.