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PARK HILL PREPARATORY SCHOOL THE DEERSTALKER ISSUE 61 - 14th september 2018

From the Headmaster:

There was a discernible chill in the air earlier this week, I believe it was Thursday, as I made my way to school. The day did fortunately warm although it did serve us notice that perhaps it was time to think about digging out the jumpers. Our first sortie to the Park on Monday with our young adventurers allowed me my first opportunity to remind the children that in the famous words of Sir Ranulph Fiennes, 'There is no such thing as bad weather, just the wrong clothing...'

We are I hope, what Roy Blatchford describes as a 'restless' school, always looking to improve and reflect on what is working well and what we can 'tweak' to make it even better still. One aspect of school life that we would like to enhance is our after school provision.

Ms Adamidou and I have had a number of conversations regarding the structure and organisation of the two sessions. We are aware how many of you would like the provision of a prep club during the after school club, where homework support can be provided prior to collection in the evening. Therefore, we would like to trial the following amendments. The evening meal/supper will now see all of the children eating together at 5pm immediately upon the completion of the after school club. They will eat, altogether, in the dining room before then going on to complete their prep or read with a member of staff. We value the notion of eating together and the associated standards that it encourages.

We have also reviewed the evening meal/supper so that the children enjoy a nutritious and enjoyable meal at this time. We are acutely aware of how many of you value this aspect of school life and trust this will be a positive development. We will very closely monitor the coming five days and seek your feedback.

Nigel Redman

You may be wondering why there is a picture of Nigel Redman, or more likely wondering exactly who he is.

In the last edition of the Deerstalker I referred to the fact that the team of teachers held a series of workshops with school improvement at the heart of our conversations. Nigel Redman was one of the people who we used as inspiration on ensuring that we look at all walks of life to improve our school. He recognised that in his role as a second row forward (or engine room - it is a murky world inhabited by the brave and foolhardy) of the England team at the time he needed to make the most of his ability and sought the skills needed in rugby from the complimentary sports of water polo and Iranian wrestling. He felt this would make him a better rugby player. He has since gone on to become director of elite coaches at GB Swimming because of his ability to, well, make the most of his ability. Where can we look, as a school, to improve all that we do?

I will be writing to you all with the key targets for the school as detailed in our school improvement plan and seeking your input to ensure that find those marginal gains.

We have a busy week to look forward to. The reminders can be found within the class news. Please take particular note of our portrait photographs taking place on Monday. If you would prefer the photograph of your daughter to be with the tie and shirt you are welcome to do so.

Our first Latin lesson was a great success this week. The children started by reviewing just how many words in modern use are actually Latin and how Latin will help support their English. The Year 3 children also enjoyed their first visit to the science lab - at the risk of repeating myself, I know of no other school that allows this age group access to such an advanced facility. Judging by their excited return to class, they enjoyed themselves!

We are holding a West End Theatre Workshop for both weeks of half term. The first week, 22nd - 26th October, will see the children prepare for a performance of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. The second week will run from Wednesday 31st October to Friday 2nd November and the show will be The Wizard of Oz. A Google form will be sent to you all on Monday should you wish to attend. The West End Theatre Workshop was a great success in August, judging by the plans Gemma has for this one, I suspect it will be an even greater success!

I hope you all have an enjoyable weekend.

Yours sincerely,

Alistair

Assembly - PC Smudge Smith

Any assembly that involves the Head being handcuffed is bound to be a success...

Before any rumours start to fly, we were joined by our very own school police officer, PC Smith who is proving to be very helpful in supporting the school in a variety of ways. He very kindly joined us for our assembly and explained about his role and previous roles as a traffic officer, riot and now community/schools team. He also kindly demonstrated how to go about arresting a clearly guilty individual...

News from Year 5 and Year 4

In the past week Year 4 and 5 have been sending in and presenting their applications for school roles with great confidence and imagination.

Progress on pupils’ Aztec Masks has seen mod roc (plaster bandages) applied and pupils have now started to apply the mosaics. We aim to finish and present our work next week.

In English we have enjoyed reading and listening to a range of stories from Rudyard Kipling’s Just So Stories. Using these stories as inspiration, we have started planning our own stories on How the Tiger Gained His Stripes. We will start writing up our stories next week using our best descriptive language, using complex sentences with relative clauses.

For Maths we shall continue using place value using addition and identifying missing numbers in column addition problems. Subtraction will be our main focus this week and practising effective methods for mental addition and subtraction.

In Humanities we will study a timeline of important dates in Aztec history and locate where in the world they lived. Additionally, pupils will be sharing their researched facts with the rest of the class.

Don't forget - Portrait Photographs on Monday; Games kit on Tuesday; Harvest Festival on Thursday.

News from Year 3

Year 3 have had a busy week preparing their various speeches for a variety of school roles. Official announcements will be made soon.

Our highlight of the week has been our first Latin lesson which proved to be a very popular learning about the origins of language. Another exciting first, was our trip to Canbury Science lab. The children thoroughly enjoyed the experience of getting on the bus for a short trip to Canbury School and familiarising themselves with the lab rules and regulations. It is certainly a treat to have access to such a well equipped lab to work in at this age.

In our Art session we made Roman Centurian helmets and re-enacted a minor battle with Mr Bond. We looked at what made the Roman army such a force to be reckoned with. The Romans have definitely invaded Park Hill.

In Mathematics, we have been further investigating Place Value and number families, using iPads to aid our learning. We have also launched our Times Tables Olympics to great excitement. Starting with fifty questions on the x2,5 and 10s. House Points to those who get all correct and a bonus house point for completion in under 3 minutes! Time to Hit the Button to increase their speed of recall!

Don't forget - Swimming kit on Wednesday; Games kit on Tuesday; Don't forget - Portrait Photographs on Monday; Harvest Festival on Thursday.

News from Year 2

Over this week, Year 2 have continued their work on place value and creating their own sums. They have been developing their mathematics skills using dice and number cards. In English, the children have been designing and then describing their own characters. The children have also been separating sentences in to nouns, adjectives, and verbs.

In Science, the children have begun to look at what a person needs to survive - the essentials (food and water), and things that are luxuries (chocolate, books).

Don't forget - Portrait Photographs on Monday; Games kit on Tuesday; Harvest Festival on Thursday.

News from Year 1

The children have built on their very impressive start to the year with a very encouraging week.

We have started our new topics in Maths and English and, as you can see in the image, building on our knowledge of 2D and 3D shapes.

We have much to look forward to as we plan our trip to the Pollock Toy Museum!

Don't forget - Portrait Photographs on Monday; Games kit on Tuesday; Harvest Festival on Thursday.

News from Reception

This week in Reception, the children have been introduced to the topic ‘My Body.’ They have enjoyed exploring our ‘X-Ray department’ role play area, investigating our bones and senses. Reception worked well as a team to draw around each other’s body discussing the names of our bones through a song and dance. As the children are all getting to know each other, some children also made their own ‘All About Me’ book using key note app on the iPad. A fun filled week made by all!

Gentle reminder to all parents: Please can you bring your child into school wearing their Sports kit and full waterproofs/wellies every Wednesday morning ready for Woodland School. Thank you.

Don't forget - Portrait Photographs on Monday; Games kit on Tuesday; Phonics parent workshop on Monday and Open Morning; Harvest Festival on Thursday.

News from Second Steps

This week we started our Phonic sessions and are having a great time learning through song and small group times. It was also our first week of Woodlands School. We excitedly went to the park and read a story about a wonky stick and started exploring our new surroundings trying to locate our own wonky stick. We then used our own imagination and became pirates riding on a dragon and climbing volcanoes! It’s been a brilliant week in Second Steps and we are looking forward to more children joining our afternoon sessions so they can stay and continue their exciting learning opportunities. Next week we will be starting our ‘Show and Tell’ sessions on Friday. This means your child can bring in 1 toy no larger than the school book bag, please can we also ensure they are not of immense value in case they are lost or accidentally broken.

Don't forget - Portrait Photographs on Monday; Games kit on Tuesday; Phonics parent workshop on Monday and Open Morning; Harvest Festival on Thursday.

News from First Steps

We had a busy week in First Steps. All of our children have settled in beautifully and were ready to participate in all of our fun learning activities this week. The children practiced their aiming and throwing skills in PE. They had their first Forest School session of the term. They explored the various leaves in our outdoor bark area. They had fun using their cuddly teddy bears to learn their body parts when singing our ‘Teddy Bear’ song and some children even created their body using a variety of shapes. In Science they made their own water colour sensory bottles and observed the movement and colours inside.

Reminders - Pret-a-portrait is taking photos this Monday. If you have signed up please bring your child in (approx. 9am) and stay with them whilst their photograph was being taken.

School Open Morning - Thursday @ 10am.

Don't forget - Portrait Photographs on Monday; Phonics parent workshop on Monday and Open Morning; Harvest Festival on Thursday.

The Gallery

Key Dates for the first few weeks:

Monday 17th September - Individual portrait photographs

Monday 17th September - Curriculum workshop - Phonics and Reception Open Morning

Thursday 20th September - Whole School Open Morning

Monday 24th September - E-Safety Workshop for parents

Created By
Park Hill
Appreciate

Credits:

Alistair Bond

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