Whitkirk News! 23rd april 2021

A message from Mrs Stout

Hello Parents and Carers! Well, we have a had a sunny, chilly and successful first week back and start to our summer term. It has been super to see children and staff reunited in our Whitkirk team and we are excited to see what we can achieve in this final, hopefully settled, term of the school year. Mr Dawson, our new head who starts officially in September, will be joining us for at least one day a week as part of the handover this term so you will see him out and about as he gets to know our school.

Please do remember about our school uniform- we expect all children to be wearing black shoes/ trainers (without bright laces or logos) and grey trousers, shorts, skirt or a blue gingham or striped summer dress. As mentioned before the half term holidays, we expect shoes/ trainers to be fully black. We get so many positive comments about how smart our children are and how well prepared they are for learning and progress and our uniform expectations play a crucial part in this. We appreciate your continued support.

A busy week, a successful week and a happy week - there is nothing I want to see more. Take a look!


Thank you to all of our parents/ carers and family members who have returned to school for the summer term and have continued to park safely. It is making a huge difference on the journeys to and from school so thank you for your cooperation in making this possible.

Next academic year:

We know that many of you will have questions and maybe some worries about the next academic year. We are putting plans in place for September 2022 and will communicate these with you when they are finalised and we are able to do so. Teachers have shared any concerns raised at Parents Evenings and any changes that are made are always done with the child's best interests at heart. We know that the start of a new year can be a daunting one so we are working on our transition plan for our new Reception starters, our pupils who will be moving up a year group with us and of course our Year 6 pupils who will be leaving for high school. We have an exciting year ahead but a jam-packed summer term to enjoy first!

Let's see what our classes have been up to this week:


In Reception this week, we have definitely enjoyed our History focus where we have been looking at our families. In circle time, we shared how we like to spend time with our families, looking at the similarities and differences between families, and discussing how it was different growing up for our parents and grandparents. Some of us couldn't believe they didn't have computers, iPads, and that milk used to come in glass bottles! We have been looking at old photographs of Leeds and have been inspired to make our own using black paper, white chalk and coffee. We have also been making family paper dolls and writing about our families. In Maths, we have started to look at teen numbers by saying it, building it and breaking it apart.


Year 1 pupils have had an exciting first week back! We have been learning about the Leeds West Indian Carnival - why and how it is celebrated. We have listened to the style of music played at carnival and even performed our own dance! Later in the week, we will be making our own musical instruments and having our very own Whitkirk Carnival! In Maths, we have been learning about equal groups and practised making equal groups with mathematical equipment (please see some pictures below).

What better way to start the summer term than with a Whitkirk Carnival? We have had a fantastic week for our Local History Study! We researched and found out all about the history of the Leeds West Indian Carnival. We explored the history of the costumes, music, dancing and food. This inspired us to create dances, costumes and even our own Carnival instrument. We were in awe of how the creator of the festival, Arthur France MBE, organised the carnival to represent Leeds’ Caribbean population, bringing comfort to people missing their home in the Caribbean and to celebrate their culture. Well done, Year 1/2!

Year 2 pupils have had a fabulous week filled with fun, bright colours and Caribbean dancing and music! We are really excited to show you our learning from our Local History Week. Look out for things on Class Dojo and Facebook to find highlights on how we brought Leeds West Indian carnival to Whitkirk! In Maths, we have been learning all about 2D shape. We have been on a shape hunt and have been sorting shapes and talking about their properties. We have also been learning about symmetry- what is symmetrical and what is not. Year 2 have really enjoyed their first week back and have settled in brilliantly.


We have had a lovely first week back in Year 3! We started our new whole class text ‘How to Train Your Dragon’ and have loved investigating how hippopotamuses used to live in Leeds during our history week focus! We have looked at different sources to find out all about the Armley Hippo and compared Leeds today to what it would have been like during the Ice Age when hippos roamed! We have also loved having our music lessons with Mr Roe and even played a whole class song using the 2 chords we have learnt on the ukulele!

This week, Year 4 have become amazing Historians in our local history study week. We have been investigating the question - 'Did the Ancient Romans ever visit Leeds?' Using historical sources, we have discovered that they did in fact visit Leeds! Coins, sandals and even a Roman fort has been discovered within the Leeds area! We have been really impressed with the children's questions throughout the week and their enthusiasm to find out more. In Art, we used our knowledge of Roman coins to create our own! The children have done an amazing job- well done Year 4!


Our value of friendship has been shining more than the sun this week in Year 5! After a lovely Easter break, we are back and ready to learn and carry out plenty of reading! Our class text, 'The boy at the Back of the Class' has helped emphasise the importance of friendship and kindness. We have absolutely loved writing paragraphs about our best friends (and some very long paragraphs too!) who we share all of our school memories with- some of our friends have the ‘souls of an angel (not angle!).’ We can't wait to see if the narrator keeps his secret promise! Here's an update on our class pets! There was a mixture of emotions when saying goodbye to our class butterflies. We screamed, cheered and Mrs Iqbal even heard a burp too. as we set them free earlier this week! It has been a lovely observing how caterpillars carry out the stage of metamorphosis and transforming into beautiful butterflies-extraordinary little creatures. However, we do believe Sonic the butterfly is still amongst us, so keep an eye out Whitkirk!

Year 6 have come back in true Whitkirk style and have made the adults very proud! We have LOVED immersing ourselves in our local history study this week and have focused on the important role that Temple Newsam played to care for soldiers in World War One. Our understanding of chronology and significant events grew through toilet roll (take a look at some of the pictures!) and was an excellent start to the week. As mathematicians we have started our measurements topic and looked at area and perimeter using fantastic vocabulary including 'rectilinear'! The vocabulary doesn't end in maths: words such as insubstantial, revenant, unprecedented and smattering have popped up in our new novel 'The Graveyard Book' - ask us what they mean!

Our stars of the week!

Have a fantastic weekend everybody- take care!

Created By
Gemma Quarmby


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