Reading Girls' School newsletter - 18 DECEMBER 2020

Principal's message: THAT WAS THE WEEK THAT WAS…

Merry Christmas to all of our pupils, families and staff

Given the restrictions that we are about to enter, we wanted the girls to have a fun week at school with their friends. We had lots of activities and we hope the girls enjoyed it…


It is not even 24 hours since the Government’s announcement of their intention for schools during the first week of next term. There is a Department for Education webinar for schools later this afternoon. It therefore doesn’t make sense to confirm our plans now only to have to redraft before our return.

Rather, it is very important that we all have a rest and take stock later. Therefore, as per our summer holiday planning for September, we will circulate a SPECIAL EDITION NEWSLETTER on 30th DECEMBER 2020 outlining the arrangements for the first week of next term.

I’m sure there will be further reports in the media and local rumours but our plans will only be revealed in our newsletter on 30th December.

In the meantime, enjoy and make the most of what will be a different Christmas for us all this year.

Jon Gargan, Principal

Christmas Jumper Day

RGS Christmas Track & Trace of POSITIVE CASES ONLY

A reminder of the information given in the newsletter last week regarding Track and Trace: In light of the Government’s characteristic late announcements this week about their request for schools to help out with Track & Trace over the initial stages of the school holidays, we have put the following system in place for RGS. If your daughter tests positive for Coronavirus and DISPLAYED SYMPTOMS UP UNTIL 12pm on SUNDAY 20th December, then you need to use the following email address to inform us covid@thameslearningtrust.co.uk. The email address will be checked daily, until and including the 24th December, between 9.00am and 10.00am.

If your daughter tests positive for Coronavirus but DID NOT DISPLAY SYMPTOMS BEFORE 12PM on SUNDAY 20th December, then you DO NOT need to inform us. From 25th December, NHS Track & Trace staff will work with people who test positive.

Please see below link to a new magazine from The Thames Learning Trust.

A group of Year 10s are taking part in the University of Reading's Scholars Programme. This exciting opportunity gives our students the opportunity to find out about university life, study and the advantages it could bring. They work with the University's students to investigate student life.

Of course, the first event this year had to be virtual so the girls didn't have the excitement of really visiting the campus and seeing the beautiful grounds and wonderful facilities for themselves. However, the online activities included a virtual tour. The Year 10s also heard about the research project they will be taking part in to help develop their study skills.

One of the great things about this program is the opportunity to meet students from other schools. There were 7 schools involved in the virtual session this week and there were icebreaker games and quizzes and the chance to chat. The University also provided a pizza lunch which went down very well!

Our thanks to Tom and Rosie at the University of Reading, and all the student ambassadors for their support. It was an exciting and fun event though it was virtual.

Featured Books for 11+ readers

Love Reading for Kids have highlighted a number of featured books for 11+ readers. The reading world now lies wide open. Individual choices of genre become more significant as readers become more discriminating. Readers develop their critical faculties as they weave their way towards the kind of readers they are growing into. The books in this section are suitable for 11-12+ readers. The books in this section might also be given a secondary age range. Some are suitable for 9+ year olds reading above their age. Please note, content & subject matter will be suitable for a 9 year old. Where indicated, less confident teen readers will enjoy the stories. Non-Fiction in this section is often fascinating and educational to a wider age range.

December 2020 Book of the Month | Everyone struggles to cope with their emotions, but it’s especially difficult for young children who often lack the vocabulary to express how they are feeling, even to themselves.

Every day throughout December (except Christmas Day), Asda is letting kids aged 16 or under eat free in any of its 216 cafes. There's no minimum spend so this can be a completely free meal, but children must be accompanied by an adult (the adult or child isn't obliged to buy a meal or spend anything in store).

You can take advantage at any time during cafe opening hours, with a maximum limit of one meal per child per day. There's no limit to how many children you can bring along for a free meal. The menu includes dishes such as fish fingers and chicken nuggets which would normally cost between £2.40 (for cold meals) and £2.60 (for hot). All dishes are served with a drink and piece of fruit.

If you're living in a tier 3 area, you can take advantage of the freebie via takeaway. Just turn up to your nearest Asda Cafe and get your kids meal to go.

Has your lesson been REAL (Relevant, Engaging, Active Learning)?

Using REAL tokens students have the opportunity to give instant feedback to staff about their experiences within the lesson.

Students are provided with a token and at the end of the lesson, are asked if their lesson has been R.E.A.L. (Relevant, Engaging, Active Learning). Students theen place their token into the 'Yes' or 'No' box, which is in every teaching classroom. Staff then uses this information to make any modification to their delivery of their lesson. These tokens are then collected in at the end of every week and counted.

Results for this week: Monday 14 December to Friday 18 December 2020

YES - 905 tokens

No - 222 tokens

Increasing Student Participation

"Talking Tokens"

Talking Tokens are issued by the classroom teacher and/or teaching assistant to pupils who participate to questions and/or ask questions during lessons. Pupils are encouraged to write their name and year group on the back of the 'Talking Token' and place them into the relevant 'Talking Token' collection box for their year group. At the end of each term, all 'Talking Tokens' are placed together and a pupil is selected at random. The more 'Talking Tokens' a pupil collects for contributing answers to questions in class, the more chances they have to win a prize.

At the end of this week the following number of 'Talking Tokens' collected by each year group were:

  • Year 7 - 419
  • Year 8 - 813
  • Year 9 - 54
  • Year 10 - 858
  • Year 11 - 0
  • Total number of 'Talking Tokens' collected this year across the whole school are 16,234.

Talking Token winners:

  • Year 7 - Romelle Coppens Chavarri
  • Year 8 - Ameena Khalid
  • Year 9 - Hiba Rashid
  • Year 10 - Felicia Mbelle
  • Year 11 - Maryam Azad

All meals are provided by Chartwells - a school meal consists of a main meal and a dessert for £2.40 a variety of snacks and drinks are also available.

Chartwells operate a cashless till system, operated by cards. The cards are topped up online using a secure website called ParentPay, if your daughter is eligible for free meals, £2.40 is credited to her card each day. Your daughter will be provided with her card and ParentPay login details on her first day at Reading Girls' School. You can find more information about ParentPay on their website http://www.parentpay.com. The school office is also happy to help with any enquiries.

Follow the link for details of the school menu.