The Voice of st leonards junior school

Friday, 23 March 2018

Dreaming beyond bandits


What an extraordinary end to the term we have had. Our two school productions this week: 'Ali Baba and the Bongo Bandits’ and ‘Dream On’ have most appropriately showcased the colour, vibrancy and imagination of our children. What they have all achieved, in whatever their roles - be it on or off stage - to bring these complex shows to life is most impressive.

In amongst my feelings of great pride towards every single child involved this week, I have learned one overarching lesson: we must never underestimate the talents or capabilities of our young people. They are capable of putting together these shows, working together as a team, whilst shining as individuals. One of the greatest mistakes we can ever make in society is to try to overcomplicate a child’s education by not having the greatest ambitions for them. What we have seen this week, in the Lower School Nativity Play in December, and indeed in many performances and feats during the term, is every child performing to the highest standards that have been set them.

Education is about showing children what can be achieved through hard work, perseverance and a developed sense of purpose and optimism, the product of which has been showcased this week. My warmest congratulations to the casts of both shows, my colleagues and Mrs Laura Stewart for helping the children realise their potential.

The Spring Term holidays will be a wonderful break, and Catherine joins me in wishing you every happiness over the next three weeks.

As we see the first signs of Spring, I do hope the children enjoy plenty of adventures.

William Goldsmith


BONGO BANDITS | The wonderful cast of the Year 4-6 play took the audience on an Arabian adventure this week with two fantastic performances of ‘Ali Baba and the Bongo Bandits’. Complete with a genie, sultan, imprisoned princesses and one very crazy camel, the boys and girls put on a mystical musical comedy for everyone to enjoy!

Special thanks goes to Mrs Stewart, the Years 4-6 teaching staff for all their support and hands-on help, Adele Neave and Colin Simpson for their help with painting the set and making the props, Melanie O’Brien for helping to create the cast’s fantastic costumes, and to Colin Barry at Caulders Garden Centre in Cupar for lending us the garden gnome and the gazebo! Last, but by no means least, a big thank you to the children of Years 4-6 for being absolute superstars!


BEACH SCHOOL | Year 3 wrapped up warm and headed down to the East Sands in St Andrews on Monday morning for a scavenger hunt and games on the beach as part of an introduction to outdoor learning by the water’s edge.

The boys and girls had a great time identifying and collecting shells and sea glass, working in groups to complete their activities! We’re looking forward to lots more Beach School activities during Summer Term!


YEAR 2 MEASURING | This week, the boys and girls in Year 2 have been learning all about measuring in Maths. First they decided to make their own pancakes, weighing out all the ingredients, before decorating them in an Easter style with colourful chocolate eggs and whipped cream! Special guest Miss Dawson was so impressed by the sweet smells of the pancake mix that she joined the class and helped with the decorations!

Year 2 have also been continuing to learn about multiplication and used this week to reflect on their learning thus far.


CELEBRATION ASSEMBLY | Year 3 led a special assembly on Monday morning, when we said farewell to Nurse Legge, who leaves St Leonards at the end of this term for an exciting new role in Newburgh. The boys and girls counted up all the bee/wasp stings, knee grazes, bumps and bruises, which Nurse Legge has patched up across the Junior School. We wish her all the best in her next adventure!

The following pupils received certificates at Celebration Assembly on Monday morning:

Jennifer received a Headmaster's Commendation for pitching a superb idea to the class during the recent 'Dragons' Den' task - an automatic dog dryer to dry a dog and clean its wet paws before coming inside.

Harris, Matilda and Monty for making fantastic books about their favourite animals for Homework Heroes, and sharing these with the class.

Adam also received a Headmaster's Commendation for making a fantastic book about his favourite animals for Homework Heroes, and sharing it with the class. Adam was also awarded Year 1 Pupil of the Week for showing kindness and empathy towards a child doing a taster day, offering to read to her and making sure that she felt happy and confident.

All the boys and girls in Year 4C were awarded a Headmaster's Commendation for the open-minded way in which they have coped with the many changes to routine during the past two weeks, undertaking rehearsals for the school play, and for their willingness to participate as a team throughout.

Harry, Rory and Hari were all awarded a Headmaster's Commendation for their superb projects on communication.

Eliza received a Spirit of St Leonards award this week. Following a ‘Unit of Inquiry’ in September on Human Rights, Eliza has continued to follow the case of Nazanin Zaghari Ratcliffe, who has been imprisoned in Iran and separated from her 3 year old daughter. Eliza spent some of Mothering Sunday painting stones to help remind the Foreign Secretary to leave no stone unturned in his efforts to secure her release.

Kai received a Spirit of St Leonards award for recently completing a 5k obstacle course race - a great example of resilience and endurance in challenging conditions.

Scott was awarded Year 2 Pupil of the Week for having the courage and confidence to speak and act so wonderfully in the Year 2 Assembly.

Tyler was awarded Year 3 Pupil of the Week for working hard and having a positive attitude, as well as for his strengths in working as a team.

A Bronze Star for 50 House Points was awarded to Adam. Silver Stars were awarded to Clara, Annie, Ramsay and Harry. Ben received 100 Good Marks.


FALKLAND PALACE TRIP | Year 4 set off for Falkland Palace on Thursday morning to explore their Unit of Inquiry looking at 'Where we are in Place and Time'. The children have been investigating the life and times of Mary Queen of Scots, largely due to her close association not only with St Leonards but with St Andrews and Fife as a whole.

The boys and girls have made connections to Mary and to the English Tudor royal family, as well as touched on the legacy of her son, James I and VI.

At Falkland Palace, the class met the Scots Queen and some of her Ladies in Waiting, had a go at the original game of tennis and made lavender bags to keep them smelling sweet! Having learnt where the expression 'tearaway' comes from, we are sure that in a bid to avoid this, Year 4 will be impeccably behaved over the ensuing holidays!


GYMNASTICS SUCCESS | Congratulations to Melissa, who came 4th in the Scottish Schools Level 4 Championships on Sunday, representing St Leonards. A fantastic achievement!


EASTER IN YEAR 5P | You are never too old to make chocolate Easter nests with mini eggs! The boys and girls in Year 5P had fun making chocolate nests on Thursday morning. They then used the net of a square to make baskets, decorated them ready to take their nests home.


GEOGRAPHY UPDATE | Mrs Adrain and her Year 7 MYP classes have been exploring the geography of food, including food miles and food waste. They all visited the CDR and where shown around by Laura Paterson, our Catering Manager at St Leonards. The boys and girls had a series of questions prepared and were given the opportunity to carry out research on the important role our CDR plays within our school.

They discovered that only free range Scottish eggs are used in the CDR, the mayonnaise made for our catering company, BaxterStorey, is low in fat. Furthermore, the class learned that only British chickens are used in the dishes, and that 98% of the meat served in the CDR is from Scottish/UK farms, with Perthshire-based butcher Simon Howie being the main supplier for meats.


HOCKEY HELPERS | A big thank you to our Year 11 helpers, Millie, Jemima and Rosa, who have been coaching our girls’ hockey team this term. Both players and coaches have braved all weathers to ensure they girls are at the top of their game!


DREAM ON | In a busy week for music and drama, Year 7’s production of ‘Dream On’ brought a twist to Shakespeare’s classic comedy, ‘A Midsummer Night’s Dream’. The boys and girls brought each character to life wonderfully and performed to two very appreciative audiences in the Main School Hall!

The reviews so far have been fantastic, so keep them coming!


COOKING CLUB | This Monday was the final session of the Year 4-5 cooking activity. They have loved trying out lots of new recipes including steak pie, fish goujons and lots more. This week they enjoyed the slightly easier challenge of making some tasty Easter treats! Many thanks go to Mrs Paterson and her team of chefs who work hard each week to prepare the ingredients for the children, and supervise the cooking so that all works out well.

Next term will be the turn of Years 1-3 and we look forward to seeing what they come up with!


The following pupils received certificates at Spring Term Awards Assembly on Thursday:

In Year 1, the Good Egg Award was presented to Clara for gaining the most House Points in the class throughout the term. Matilda was voted as Children's Hero of the Term for her kindness, courtesy, helpfulness, care of others, selflessness, positivity and generosity of spirit. Harris received the award for Class Teacher's Hero of the Term for an excellent attitude towards his learning, for making outstanding progress across the curriculum, and for fantastic effort with homework tasks. The Growth Mindset award went to Holly for not giving up on the challenge of reading and writing, approaching all tasks with determination, enthusiasm and a positive mindset.

In Year 2, Kamilah was presented with the Growth Mindset award for facing challenges with focus, determination and enjoyment, and being able to work as part of a team. The Children's Hero of the Term was Cara, Mia was chosen as Class Teacher's Hero of the Term for always having a positive attitude towards her learning, and being kind and caring towards others in her class. Mohamed was presented with the Good Egg Award for Year 2.

Year 3's Children's Hero of the Term was Oscar, while Grace was named Class Teacher's Hero of the Term for demonstrating faultless commitment, always giving as much as possible to all activities, remaining principled, and getting thoroughly stuck in to all areas of school life. Tyler was presented with the Growth Mindset certificate for persevering in all areas of challenge, remaining positive at all times, and for encouraging others when they feel challenged, as well as at all times realising the importance of having a sense of humour. The Good Egg Award was presented to Harry.

In Year 4C, the Growth Mindset award went to Cameron, for remaining resilient, responsive and cheerful in all areas of school life. Sanna was presented with a certificate for Class Teacher's Hero of the Term for showing a positive spirit and continued readiness to learn from all classroom experiences. Alastair won the Good Egg Award, and Katie was voted Children's Hero of the Term.

Emil was Year 4P's Class Teacher's Hero of the Term for working hard, being a caring friend to others, and showing great kindness and consideration. Archie won the Year 4P Good Egg Award. Lucy was voted Children's Hero of the Term, and Charlie collected the Growth Mindset award for displaying a hard-working and determined attitude at all times, displaying an inquiring mind, and for always striving to extend learning with in-depth questioning.

In Year 5C, Shreyas was voted Children's Hero of the Term, Charlie received the Growth Mindset award for working to raise his confidence and sharing excellent thoughts and ideas, Harry received the Good Egg Award, and XiuRong was presented with the Class Teacher's Hero of the Term award for working incredibly hard, showing real kindness, care and empathy towards others, and displaying an open-minded attitude.

Charlie won the Year 5P Growth Mindset certificate for facing the challenge of being on stage for the school production, putting himself out of his comfort zone, and taking part with great determination. Archie was voted Year 5P Children's Hero of the Term, Emily won the Good Egg Award, and Eliza was Class Teacher's Hero of the Term for working quietly, supporting her peers with no fuss, and remaining positive, tackling problems head on.

Cameron had a double win in the Year 6 awards. He was voted Children's Hero of the Term and won the Good Egg Award. Ruby received the Growth Mindset certificate for perseverance when finding work tricky, making significant progress with all areas of the curriculum, most notably in Maths and writing. Anna was the Class Teacher's Hero of the Term for always giving her very best effort and working hard throughout the term.

In Year 7C, the Children's Hero of the Term was Millie, the Class Teacher's Hero of the Term was Angus, for outstanding participation in the Middle Years Programme through lessons, extra-curricular activities and independent study, Nicholas, won the Good Egg Award, and Ingrid was presented with the Growth Mindset award for growing in self confidence by nurturing positive relationships with others.

Year 7P's Good Egg Award went to Jack, while Will picked up the Growth Mindset certificate for developing independence of mind and taking on tasks with a positive, 'can do' attitude, for showing genuine determination to take advantage of what is on offer at school, and not merely following a crowd. Eva won the Class Teacher's Hero of the Term award for being a pillar of strength through the term, for helping at all times, and for responding to others in a sensible and caring manner. Elisenda was voted Year 7P's Children's Hero of the Term.

A massive congratulations to all those who collected certificates on Thursday morning for an incredible range of strengths and achievements!


As the sun shone over an unusually calm North Sea last Monday morning, Year 3 embarked on their first ‘Beach School’. The weather was glorious and each and every child enjoyed the varied activities - the sand sculpture of Mrs Souter was particularly well received. They dug for clay, combed the beach for treasure and re-enacted ‘Chariots of Fire’.

All Lower School year groups have scheduled Beach School for next term and despite it being ‘Summer Term’, I urge all parents to continue ensuring that their children are properly attired with waterproofs, warm clothing and wellies, to ensure we are prepared for all weather conditions. One of the joys of Scotland is the need to ‘be prepared’ for every weather eventuality whatever the season. Plus, sand gets everywhere! I should like to add that apparently, when on the beach you can never have too many pairs of socks. We have all learnt that clean socks after Beach School are a priority.

When not frolicking on the beach, the Lower School key objectives this week have been;

Year One

  • Mathematics – investigating various addition methods and establishing quick-fire recall of double facts.
  • English – to understand the features, purpose and variety of instructions culminating in the creation of posters illustrating how to give nature a home in our gardens. Phonemes – revision and assessment.

Year Two

  • Mathematics – to be able to understand what multiplication is and to be able to measure accurately in metres and centimetres.
  • English – ‘Reading is thinking’. Phoneme - revision.

Year Three

  • Mathematics – Applying division knowledge in order to solve word problems. Beginning to link multiplication and division facts to understanding fractions. While there is no set homework, do feel free to revise multiplication tables 2,3,4 and 5 and accompanying division.
  • English –To be able to write an account of a ‘special day’ on Word. Proof reading, editing, adapting as needed. To be able to identify and conjugate the verb ‘to be’ in both past and present tense. Phoneme – ‘or’.
  • Shoeboxes - Year 3 will be getting creative with shoeboxes next term, making habitats for endangered animals. May I ask that over the course of the holidays, all the boys and girls in Year 3 look out a shoebox, which they can bring into school with them next term.

All reading books have been collected in to allow for our termly audit.

All in all, it has been another fantastically busy term with so much accomplished. Our children have worked hard, played hard and investigated hard. We send them home to you now for a very well-deserved rest and to enjoy whatever adventures large and small that you may have in store for them at home or away.

All the Lower School staff thank you so very much for your support this term in all our various enterprises and we look forward to many more in April!

Have a tremendous break.

Claire Boissiere, Lower School Coordinator


GRAND ONLINE RAFFLE | The St Leonards Parents Association Grand Online Raffle is nearly upon us and the PA are reaching out to parents to see if they would consider making a prize donation. Thank you to those who have donated items so far - we are very grateful for all contributions. Prizes can be big or small, unique or unusual, the everyday item to the coveted and rare. They can be items, experiences, vouchers or promises - nothing is too big or too small!

If you would like to donate a prize, please contact the Raffle Organising Team at pa@stleonards-fife.org.


NEW DATE | The winter weather defeated us on Sunday, 18 March, causing the Parents Association Great St Leonards School Egg Hunt to be postponed. This event will now take place on Saturday, 21 April 2018, from 11am to 2pm.

All are welcome to join us for Easter competitions, coffee and cake in St Katharines Hall, and the great Egg Hunt itself! Booking is essential via https://www.trybooking.co.uk/book/event?eid=2584&

We look forward to seeing you there!

We wish the following a very...

We wish the following a very Happy Birthday for the Spring Term holiday period: Shelagh, James, Henry, Anona, Saydee, Jack, Grace and Katie.

Report Abuse

If you feel that this video content violates the Adobe Terms of Use, you may report this content by filling out this quick form.

To report a Copyright Violation, please follow Section 17 in the Terms of Use.