Friars Flyers End of Spring Term 2019

Dogs Trust visit

On 26th March 2019, Maria from Dogs Trust visited the school. She spent the morning with year 5, where she presented a literacy workshop to each class. The children had the opportunity to become Adoption Advisors and match certain families to the right dog. They also designed the perfect family for their chosen dog, considering their hobbies, work life and housing situation

We were also lucky enough to have Maria give an assembly to KS2. She explained and demonstrated how to approach and stroke a dog that is unfamiliar to the children in a safe way. We know how exciting it can be to interact with new dogs and now the children know to follow the 3 important steps. 1) Ask the owner’s permission first. 2) If the owner says it is ok, stand still with your hands by your side and let the dog sniff you. 3) If the dog stays by you and doesn’t walk away disinterested, stand to the side of the dog and stroke the front shoulder.

In the afternoon, Maria visited year 6. Each class had a workshop about the evolution of dogs which was perfect for their spring science topic of evolution and adaptation. Did you know that all dogs share 95.5% of their DNA with wolves? The children learnt that wolves evolved into early dogs and that a grey wolf is a dog’s closest living ancestor. Further, it was discussed how wolves first became domesticated and the advantages this brought to mankind. The workshop moved onto selective breeding and inheritance and the problems that this can now cause for the animals.

To end the children recapped their learning from year 5 about how to look after a dog responsibly. The children were very knowledgeable about the items needed, such as tasty treats for training purposes, toys to keep the dogs busy and happy and medicines such as worming tablets. The children learnt that a dog should not be left alone for more than four hours, that they should be groomed daily or twice daily for long haired breeds and that they should get 2 walks a day. Visit www.dogstrust.org.uk to find further help and advice about dog ownership.

Infant Music Festival

On Friday 22nd March thirty children from Year 2 went to the Freight House in Rochford to join with other schools for the Infant Music Festival. The theme this year was people and we sang songs about different people in our lives. There were three other schools there and each school took a turn to accompany all the children with percussion instruments and singing two solo school songs. There were songs called My Mum, The Firefighter, Family, I Get by With a Little Help From my Friends and The Music Man. Our solo songs were Matchstalk Men and Matchstalk Cats and Dogs and Hey Mr Miller! We were the last school to perform and naturally, our children were the best. The children thoroughly enjoyed their time at the festival and many were inspired to join the Choir when they get to Key Stage 2. The children were exceptionally well behaved and represented the school very well. Each child was rewarded with an “I sang at the festival 2019” badge for their efforts.

Book Week

At the beginning of March we had our Book week and we certainly took every opportunity to ‘share a story’ with somebody. We had lots of different events taking place throughout the week, our younger children enjoyed sharing stories with their buddy readers from key stage 2, while some classes even had a surprise visit from a different member of staff who arrived to share one of their favourite stories with them. Year 3 also took part in the BBC live lesson especially designed around World Book Day.

There were lots of competitions taking place over the week. Key Stage 1 needed to design a ‘potato’ book character. There were over 50 entries but after a lot of discussions.

Key Stage 2 had two competitions to enter through the week; the first was to create a bookmark for their year group and then second, to write a short story to then be shared with a younger reading buddy. Congratulations to Grace, Chloe and Cleo who won our story writing prizes.

Here are the chosen winning bookmarks for Years 3, 4, 5 and 6 plus the winner of a special creativity award for the most imaginative bookmark.

Well done to all of our competition winners!

Friday also saw us celebrate ‘World Book Day’ in style. We dressed up us our favourite book characters and enjoyed a special cinema lunch. Prizes were given for the best costumes designs. Here are our winners from Nursery through to Year 6.

Finally, a big thank you for supporting our book fair at school, we raised over £800, which will help us restock our library with new, exciting titles.

Portico Spelling Bee

After some intense battles and overcoming some of the toughest spellings known to children in their individual school finals, the day had finally come for the Portico Spelling Bee Grand Finals!

This eagerly awaited event saw boys against girls, champions against champions, Hamstel, West Leigh, Porters and Friars all against each other but, above all, it was a celebration of some great spelling across the Portico Academy.

After several sudden death playoffs, some intense concentration, some very tricky spellings set by Mr Queenborough and some extremely high quality jokes from our comperes, Hamstel Juniors had emerged victorious in the Years, 3, 4 and 5 finals. All of the finals were incredibly close but congratulations to Kasey, Ella and Dinoshan on becoming our Portico champions.

With only the opposing schools standing between a clean sweep for Hamstel, the year 6’s battled it out, until Olly from West Leigh was finally crowned champion.

A special mention must go to our audience today that included all of the runners up from their respective schools. Every child did themselves and their schools proud, whether competing or cheering on their friends!

Well done to all of our finalists for getting this far and congratulations again to our four champions.

Able writers workshop

Twelve of our year 3 and 4 children were luckily enough to attend a more able writers workshop at Thorpedene Primary School this week.

The event run by Authors abroad allowed our children to work with award winning author, Tamsyn Murray. Tamsyn really challenged the children to think more deeply about their storylines, plots and characters before offering them valuable advice to develop their stories and create higher level skills such as pace and tension. The children really enjoyed their hard work and they were proud to bring their excellent stories back to school. They even got the chance to get their books signed by Tamsyn at the end of the day.

Creative Dance Festival

On Friday the 1st March 2019 Dance Crew went to an amazing Dance festival at Garons leisure centre. There were lots of others schools who took part and we all really enjoyed watching their routines. When it was our turn to perform the children were all a little bit nervous but after the dance they were really proud of themselves, even though Mrs Axelson forgot some but we remembered. It was a great event and all of us would love to go to something like it again.

Red Nose Day

On Friday 15th, we combined our first spelling bee final with a special Comic Relief twist. The four finalists, Harvey, Joyin, Isabella and Patrycja, from Year 3, battled it out to decide who would be going forward to face the finalists from the other Portico Schools on 28th March. However, for each spelling they got correct, an unsuspecting member of staff got covered in some delightful concoctions created by Mrs Stephens, our school Kitchen Manager. After an intense battle, Joyin was pronounced the winner and she will now go forward to the Grand Portico final.

A big thank you to Mr Queenborough, Mr Aggus, Ms Murphy and Mr Reeve for being great sports in aid of Comic Relief! The children really enjoyed the fun and we also raised over £317 for a great cause.

You will also be glad to know that the left over angel delight with rice crispies, beans and spaghetti, sloppy jelly and custard with sweet corn chunks, will not be part of next week’s school dinner menu!

What good sports!

Year 3 assembly

The children in year 3 worked so incredibly hard with their assembly! We started back in the Stone Age where the children sang 'We will rock you' caveman style! The programme 'This is your life' guided the audience through Queen Boudicca's achievements and a speech was read. Children showed some pictures of their art work centred around Roman buildings. We then moved to 'Rome's got talent' where Antus and Decus introduced a range of acts onto stage sharing mosaics that had been made, an Iceni tribal chant and a gladiator fight scene. Lastly 'Take me Out' guided us through the different leaders of the time. Year 3 demonstrated some outstanding performance skills through their singing with 'We will hunt you' and 'We'll be free' to a song from the Greatest Showman.

Well done our talented Year 3!

Ash Wednesday Assembly

What a terrific assembly we shared with Rev. David Pierce, the Lead Minister from St. Marys in Shoebury on Thursday. He came in to discuss how some Christians celebrate Ash Wednesday. He began talking about Shrove Tuesday and why pancakes are shared. Ash Wednesday was detailed and the children were shown palm crosses and the oil and ash used in the service. David then invited some volunteers up to work out how many days there were left before Easter and explained the term ‘Lent’. We all really enjoyed singing ‘Give me oil in my lamp’ with David beautifully accompanying on his guitar. We look forward to sharing more time together.

Disco dancing

Once again we welcomed the DJ Micky B to Friars for the Spring Disco. Not only did he deliver great music, there was a smoke and bubble machine! Reception started the event with their wonderful moves and then Key Stage 1 took over and really showed all the staff what wonderful dancers they are (some got medals!). Years 3 and 4 were next, followed by years 5 and 6. The children behaved impeccably and were fortified by refreshments courtesy of our PA. A great time was had by all and they are booked again for next year!

Dinner menu

Week one

  • Monday - Pork sausage and creamy mash, Quorn sausage and creamy mash, baked beans, seasonal salad selection, Pineapple upside down cake and custard
  • Tuesday - Homemade beef lasagne and garlic bread, jacket potato with tuna or cheese, sweetcorn, seasonal salad selection, Angel Delight
  • Wednesday - Roast chicken and crispy roast potatoes, veggie roll and crispy potatoes, broccoli and cauliflower, seasonal salad selection, Arctic roll
  • Thursday – Pork meatballs in tomato sauce and pasta, cheese and tomato pasta bake, garden peas, seasonal salad selection, cornflake tart and custard
  • Friday - Battercrisp fish burger and chips, cheese and tomato pizza slice and chips, baked beans, seasonal salad selection, ice cream tub

Week two

  • Monday – Mild chicken curry and rice, Vegetable curry and rice, garden peas, seasonal salad selection, iced sponge and custard
  • Tuesday – Chorizo pasta bake, Macaroni cheese, sweetcorn, seasonal salad selection, chocolate ice cream roll
  • Wednesday – Roast pork and crispy potatoes, veggie roll and crispy potatoes, mixed vegetables, seasonal salad selection, fruit jelly
  • Thursday – Homemade minced beef pie and creamy mash, Jacket potato with tuna or cheese, shredded cabbage, Seasonal salad selection, Jam roly poly and custard
  • Friday – Battered chicken nuggets and chips, vegetable nuggets and chips, baked beans, seasonal salad selection, iced bun

Available daily

  • Cold packed lunch
  • Cool milk
  • Chilled water
  • Wholemeal and white bread
  • Fresh fruit and yoghurt

Medical reminders

Please remember that asthma inhalers need to have the prescription label on the pump not the box.


Well done to 2RS and 3WL for having the highest attendance this half term. Our attendance target is 96%.

KS1: 2RS - 97.4%

KS2: 3WL - 97.5%

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