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Nursery Dinosaur Discussions
Every week the Nursery children lead their own play and learning. We give them every opportunity to express their ideas in so many different ways. Dinosaurs captured their imagination this week... Some children chose to draw at the light table whilst chatting about some scary, stomping dinosaurs, others covered one of the dinosaurs in paint. The children discovered how it felt to let the paint slip through their hands and this led to some interesting discussions about the textures and feelings it created. As teachers, we are here to guide the children at opportune moments to help stretch their learning. The dinosaur discussion was extended to cover different ways of moving, the painted dinosaur led to a lesson in health and self-care as we cleaned and tidied afterwards. Allowing the children to explore, discover and express their own ideas helps us develop every child into a courageous learner.
Lou Blackaby, Nursery Teacher
Reception Make A Move
What a fantastic first half term we have had! The children have settled really well into Reception life and are enjoying the routines. The children have particularly enjoyed our topic ‘On The Move’ where they have loved going on bike rides, walking around the school grounds, going on imaginative plane, bus and train journeys to different places around the world. The highlight this week was the bus journey! The children took part in a site-seeing tour around London, we waved to the Queen and spotted Big Ben. It was wonderful to see the children have a go at making some of the famous landmarks such as the Shard and the London Eye using the construction blocks in our shared area. The various types of creative learning has encouraged the children to be enthusiastic learners and has boosted their imaginative minds. It has helped children make sense of things that they have experienced or seen and given the children opportunities to practise decision-making and social skills such as sharing and collaborating which are fundamental skills in the Early Years.
Jessie Millsom, Reception Teacher
Year 1 Get Sporty
Year 1 have been developing their fundamental movement skills and applying them to sport specific activities, such as Cricket and Football. The acquisition of these fundamental movement skills - running, jumping, dodging, throwing, catching, rolling - are the building blocks of more complex skills and are essential to the development of competence in a child’s physical literacy journey. The children have enjoyed learning the basics of striking and fielding, in Cricket, alongside ball control, passing techniques and developing spatial awareness in Football. In our last lesson, the children got the chance to apply their skills to small-sided games. They were introduced to basic attacking and defending principles, as well as developing their understanding of moving into space and following the direction of play. Next half of term, Year 1 will continue to develop these principles through Rugby in their Games lessons. In PE lessons, they will begin a course of ABC Fitness, to further improve their agility, balance and coordination. Year 1 have also been flexing their muscles in the swimming pool each week, showing impressive technique in Front Crawl, Backstroke and Breaststroke. Some of the children have progressed into the deeper section of the pool, working on their water confidence and technique, whilst out of their depth and some have showed great courage and perseverance by jumping into the deep end for the very first time!
Jess Oecken, Head of Brookham Sport
Year 2 Celebrate Harvest
We have been really excited about performing our Harvest poetry, all week. Luckily, we have been extremely busy and between practices we have had the most amazing time. The week started brilliantly with our Rainforest Cafe where we learned a little about the people of the Rainforest and made instruments called 'Rainmakers'. We also tried the most unusual snacks: flavoured crickets, mealworms and locust - delicious! The children assured the teachers that they were both crunchy and tasty. After that, we started to plan and design our bug hotels, which we later built in the Brookham forest. There were plenty of micro-habitats to choose from in each of the rooms. Just before the performance, we spent a very happy afternoon learning about Harvest time and why we give thanks. The cornucopias that the children worked together to make, are now part of a fabulous display. Finally, the day of the performance arrived. The children took deep breaths, stood up in front of the audience and performed our Field Mouse poem, each class taking a verse, and also joining in a verse together. Remembering the words and actions, the children were amazing, and made this year's Harvest Assembly really special.
Stephanie Turner, Year 2 Class Teacher
Year 3 Captivated by the 'Cello
Ever keen to embrace what we can do rather than dwell on what we can't, Year 3 were visited by Highfield and Brookham 'cello teacher, Mrs Spencer. She shared her love of the instrument, demonstrated how to play it and explained the role it has within a group or an orchestra. Mrs Spencer played some of 'the swan' by Saint-saens and the children were clearly captivated by the 'cello's sound. Hearing instruments live has a tangibility that is lost through radio or television. Introducing instruments to the children allows them to hear and experience an instrument first-hand and is such an important activity in helping to inspire future musicians.
Mary Hall, Deputy Head of Music
Year 4 Explore the Power of Art
In Art, we are always connecting cross-curricular learning opportunities and Black History Month has provided Year 4 with a perfect opportunity to see just how effective Art is as a personal and historical record of life and its events. They explored the female, Black Artist Lois Mailou Jones, producing portraits in her colourful, bold style. They discovered that her style had shifted and evolved many times in response to influences in her life and her extensive travels. They learned that Lois felt that her greatest contribution was to prove the talent of Black Artists and they noted how her work echoes her pride in her African roots and American ancestry. This topic provided Year 4 with many avenues of discussion that went far beyond the magical artwork that they produced themselves.
Olga Houghton, Head of Art
Year 5 Segregate
As the children entered their classrooms for PSHE this week, they were segregated for various reasons. Who has a cat? Who has two siblings? Who has blue eyes? The various groups were then given unjust privileges for the remainder of the lesson. This represented the times in which Rosa Parks grew up in 1950s, Alabama. As you can imagine, the children were absolutely horrified at this and it caused uproar among them. Learning about the life of Rosa Parks, allowed the children to see the injustices and inequality that black people faced. They were thrilled to discover that Rosa Parks refused to give up her seat on the bus, that a boycott ensued and the civil rights movement began.
Vivienne Liddell, Head of Year 5
Year 6 Celebrate Early Black History
Understanding our past and where we come from is in important part of History. Year 6 have recognised Black History Month by discussing the early black communities in Britain. The children have been enthralled by David Olusoga's documentaries about Black History. The children were fascinated to discover that the first Black African communities came to Britain in the 3rd Century AD with the Romans and were tasked with protecting Hadrian's Wall. They learned that these people remained in Britain, settling in the North and across other areas of the country becoming part of our British History. The class discussed the importance of recognising and celebrating this important part of our History and truly understanding how this has shaped the Britain we know today.
Jo Gordon, History Teacher
Year 7 Drum Breaks
Year 7 are studying World Music this term so it was perfect timing that Black History Month dovetailed with our study of African traditional Music and the Djembe. The children enjoyed learning about Call and Response music and discovering its roots in African and African-American music. They tried their hand at this style of music on the drums, taking turns to lead the group in drumming a variety of Breaks. We will carry this knowledge of African roots over the Atlantic and into the Jazz and Latino traditions further in the term.
John Mühlemann, Director of Music
Year 8 Response To Racism
In English, Year 8 have been studying the set text 'Refugee Boy' by Benjamin Zephaniah. It is a story about Alem who is half Ethiopian, half Eritrean and left by his father to claim asylum in the UK in order to escape war and persecution. Whilst in the UK, he suffers from bullying and racism. Year 8 found the text incredibly emotive and all had strong opinions about the persecution Alem had to endure. In response they have been writing their own poetry to reflect some of the abuse that Alem suffers at the hands of another boy Sweeny.
Jane Hamilton, Teacher of English
Here in this vast city
Your aggression towards me
Your infuriating tone
The disrespectful way you hurt me
Red lights penetrate my mind
Heavy angry breathing echoes in my ear drums
Anger and hate fill the atmosphere
Alone waiting in this huge, lonely city
Afraid I stay
My enemy racism.
By Summer Gratton
Highfield House Points
Good Marks (Years 4, 5 & 6)
Sabina Tracey 50 • Edith Williams 23 • Jess Reid 23 • Jack Heaver 16 • Oliver Glasgow 16 • Wilfred Walters 16
Waterloo 23.1 • Agincourt 21.1 • Trafalgar 20.8
Plus Marks (Year 4, 5 & 6)
Rory Lett 73 • Jemima Goldsmith 56 • Sabina Tracey 55 • Amelie Tyrell-Evans 46 • Amelie Kingsbury 44 • Jamie Borwick 40 • Emily Pearce 40
Trafalgar 58.5 • Agincourt 54.8 • Waterloo 52.1
Merit Marks (Years 7 and 8)
Fergus Turvill 56 • Oliver Hendricks 54 • Isabella Hendricks 35
Agincourt 13.6 • Trafalgar 12.7 • Waterloo 11.7