From the Headmaster:
Book Character Day - Friday 12th March, a wonderful opportunity for us all to dress up as our favourite book character.
Additional Zoom Opportunities...
We are alert to how much many of you have enjoyed seeing and hearing how hard your children have been working these last few months. I will confess that the few opportunities I have had to overhear my own daughters lessons I have greatly valued; few things are better, for me at least, than hearing a really good teacher deliver a lesson that captures young minds and sparks a conversation and learning opportunity.
So, you are under no obligation to do so, but we would like to offer you the opportunity to join us next week to see what is happening (albeit over zoom) and to hear from the children about the activity they are doing at that time.
The first opportunity will be from 3pm on Monday, my zoom account, where we will join the children in their Adventure School lesson. I will explain what we are doing and then hand over to the children for them to explain to you how they have gone about the task.
The second opportunity will be on Thursday, my zoom again, for an inter-house quiz! As many of you well know, it always includes a parent round so be prepared! All children from Second Steps through to Year 6 will be involved (and their parents too!)
The third lesson will be next Friday afternoon, again from 3pm but this time with Mr Sims, who will explain the STEAM challenge for that afternoon and perhaps an opportunity to join in with the final challenge itself!
I hope that this will be of interest to you, and that you will be able to join us for at least some of the activities.
I am once again grateful for the positive feedback we have received from across the school for both our communication leading up to the start of term and for the most complimentary comments regarding our provision so far.
I am aware that whilst many of our children are now well experienced in their use of Showbie and Zoom there may well be times when things do not necessarily work as you want them to. Therefore, please use Showbie as your route to resolving or clarifying any queries. By the far the biggest feedback we received back in April/May was the 'explosion' on WhatsApp when there was a technical issue or confusion. We want to avoid this happening as this negatively impacts on your own working day. Both I and my colleagues are able to respond quickly to any queries.
Last week we spoke about carpe diem and the importance of seizing every day. This week we followed a similar message, it's ok to look back at how far we have come and to celebrate our progress.
We have all learnt a huge amount over these last few months and almost year...
We shared a variety of thoughts. I have learnt so. much about teaching and learning and, like Mrs Kilb have an even greater appreciation for the sense of team and solidarity we enjoy as a staff and community here at Park Hill. It is rare, almost unique that a group of people work without ego but with great pride. Armchair ride, most definitely.
What came across so loudly from all who offered their thoughts was family; how important they are and how we are all occasionally guilty of letting life get in the way of what is truly important.
The link is below for the whole assembly, wasn't our Mayor impressive.
Perseverance, Resilience and Kipling Award
We were kindly joined by The Worshipful the Mayor of the Royal Borough of Kingston upon Thames, Councillor Margaret Thompson, who presented the awards this week and also shared in with the assembly by also nominating some of her favourite books as part of one of our discussions. It was notable that she was so keen to join us for the whole of the assembly following the presentation. I was a little concerned as there was no suggested protocol on how to mute or remove the spotlight from a Mayor, but she took it in very good grace!
Congratulations to Kiran, Lexi, and Chloe for their considerable efforts.
Who could we ask to present next week?
steady persistence in a course of action, a purpose, a state, etc., especially in spite of difficulties, obstacles, or discouragement.
the ability of a person to adjust to or recover readily from illness, adversity, major life changes
Kipling Award -
Images of the week
With a mix of happiness and sadness, this week Year 5 waved goodbye to lockdown learning. As tough as the changes were for some to adapt to working from home, the settled routines need to be modified once more to have us all back on site together.
This week in class we have been researching and developing our working knowledge of planting, ongoing care and then harvesting the various crops that we each plan to grow on our allotments. It is great to hear that the children’s knowledge of fruit and vegetables is quite informed, when added to their new research the resulting pieces of Information Texts are looking fantastic.
Back by popular demand was the return to our project earlier in the year where we learnt different dances for different decades. This week we hit the ground running with the classic Macarena, after rolling out the tried and tests dance moves, the children added their own variations.
Our last Week of teaching remotely is finally over and the sense of relief for many was evident on our final call on Friday. In that call we reflected upon what we have learnt from our experiences during this lockdown and the past year. Many children in Year Four commented on how they have missed their friends, whilst they also agreed on how the unique events had provided them with a better perspective on helping others, and sympathising with those affected more directly by the pandemic.
In our academic studies we tackled Short Stories with a spooky element and cliff-hanger endings in order to inspire our own stories. At the end of the week it was great to see how descriptive their writing had become with fluent applications of adverbials, direct speech and embedded clauses too.
Bar charts and analysing data was our focus in Maths and Year Four mastered drawing and labelling their own bar charts with increasing accuracy as the week progressed.
In other subjects we completed our Romero Britto inspired paintings in Art but we endured a shaky start to Humanities as we learnt about Earthquakes and their effect on towns and cities. In preparation for their learning next week, Year Four produced imaginative designs for earthquake proof buildings that will be tested on jelly and other shaking surfaces in lessons.
There was ‘amp’le learning in Science as the theme of electric circuits continued using the online circuit designing software. Mr Stevenson will look forward to electrifying children’s minds (metaphorically) next week with real circuits designed in the class room.
We can’t wait for next week and look forward to seeing you all soon.
Year 3 were cheering out loud this morning at the thought of Friday being their last day on zoom. Home learning has definitely had its day! However, we still managed to learn about angles this week. Year 3 were introduced to baby acute, Mrs always Right (Mum), Mr Obtuse (dad) and Reflex the dog who is always outside! I was very proud of Year 3 as they managed to measure accurately in degrees using both the inside and outside measures on the protractor depending which way round the angle was. We even had time to think about how a triangle added up to 180 degrees and quadrilaterals 360 degrees.
In English we are looking at Adventure stories and the criteria needed to match the genre. Using Book Creator we are writing out our version of the story looking to edit and up level our work in school next week.
STEAM this week continued our engineering theme making a vehicle that travels. The ultimate challenge of problem solving and refining ideas to produce a finished product that works.
Year 2 have been working immensely hard this half term whether that be at home or at school. We would like to thank all our parents for giving us such wonderful feedback in our parent meetings, Mrs Patel and I really do appreciate your continued support.
This week we created leaflets for our favourite places to visit, the children had to include maps, ticket prices, activities for people to do and even write a review.
In Maths we have been looking at time, specifically 5 and 10 past and 5 and 10 to.
Next week we are very excited to see all the children back and we have some wonderfully fun activities planned.
Year 1 celebrated the end of remote teaching with a tremendous Zoom party on Friday afternoon. We had great fun with task master tasks and listening games.
Through the week we have worked incredibly hard in every lesson.
In literacy we developed our understanding of inference. We looked at illustrations, sentences and passages to find the inferred meaning.
At the end of the week we write letters to the council to ask for more trees to be planted and explain the reason why.
In maths we moved into a new topic -2D shapes and have been looking at quadrilaterals and right angles as well as exploring symmetry.
We had a wonderful music lesson on Wednesday where we explored out favourite music learning about texture, rhythm, the layering of instruments and if a piece of music was loud or quiet, fast or slow. Then created an expressive piece of art to reflect the music.
The highlight of the week was our Screen free Thursday when we made mini me characters for world book day using potatoes. Such fun!
We have been developing our listening skills this week in Reception to help us listen to instructions and ideas from our peers in questions. We have been doing this by talking about the changes in ourselves from a baby to now. We have been playing a hot seating game to develop our skills in asking questions to each other to find out what animal was on our head. We had excellent questions being asked. Then in woodland school we played a blind obstacle course where we worked in pairs to describe to our partner who was blindfold how to get across the trim trail. Those that were blindfolded were very brave at having a go at this task.
In maths we wrote price labels to help us use our knowledge of coins and money to pay for our toys. Reception showed great application of the concept.
In literacy we learnt about healthy eating and created a healthy eating plate to show what we need lots of in a meal and we all understood that sweets and chocolate are treats.
We took part in a whole school art project and made our book character mini mes. We had some fantastic outcomes and lots of hard work whilst they created them.
In computing we have learnt how to direct the bee bots and make them go to our partner. Finally in music we developed our understanding of beats and rhythm using our rhythm sticks and counting beats and tapping out simple words.
Well done reception, a lovely week this week.
This week we have been learning about Seasons and focusing on Spring.
The children listened to the story ‘The Listening Walk’ by Paul Showers. Learning to be still and just listen. After reading the story the children covered their eyes & named what they could hear. Then we went for a listening walk around the garden and playground to find different noises. We heard the birds singing, aeroplanes, cars, children talking in their class.
We have also been looking for signs of spring, the children spotted blossom, daffodils and crocuses. We then painted our own blossom to decorate our classroom tree.
In sport the children were very good at listening and following instructions and working on ball skills. Throwing and catching, stopping the ball with our foot, then kicking it towards the goal.
In Letters and Sounds the children have been matching initial letter sounds to a picture and to their on name and building CVC words.
In woodland school the children have been creating a herb garden in the flower beds. They took cuttings from the lavender and rosemary plants and replanted them and planting Mint seeds. Watering then regularly o they grow new roots.
To Celebrate World book day next Friday we will be having a Story telling week.
The children can bring in their favourite book on Monday. Each day a few children can lead a story time.
Please make sure your book is clearly named.
Miss Finch and Miss Wood
We had a lovely and creative week in First Steps.
We listened to the story “We are going on a bear hunt” performed by the author, Michael Rosen.The children repeated the phrases and enjoyed the family’s adventures . After reading the story aloud in class, we went on our bear hunt in bark area. The children following different parts of the bark area, they touched the grass, pretended to swim through the blue cover, dipped their fingers into some mud, and discovered the narrow cave.When they saw the bear, they run all the way back to the classroom and hid under the cover.
In Phonics we learnt rhyming words for the colours, like “red on my head, blue on my shoe”.
In sensory tray we all enjoyed feeding the hungry farm animals with cereals and crackers and we felt the touch of these crunchy snacks.
In Art the children had extra fun doing a cling film painting activity.They spread the colour with their fingers and observed it merging and making pretty patterns. Additionally, they started to prepare some beautiful art pieces for Mother’s Day.
Playing in the outdoor area we dug the wet soil using spade and our hands which helped us to improve our gross motor skills also we filled up the flower pots and containers.
In Sports lesson we learnt to follow the listening zone, the active zone and tried to follow instructions and rules, while we had fun hopping and running.
Have a lovely weekend.