Head's Blog

Federation Art Day

On Friday (11th), we will be holding our third Federation Day. This event normally means that the children from both schools get together and work collaboratively; last year it was for sporting activities. This year, we obviously cannot get together in person. We will, however, do so remotely with each year group collaborating over Zoom. Our day will focus on art, specifically around the theme of trees and the colour green.

At the moment, many of the classes are sharing a lovely book about personal and social development called ‘Can I build another me?’ In the section about individuality under the heading ‘I’m no one but me’, it states:

“Grandma once told me that everyone is like a tree. Trees come in all different shapes and sizes. You can’t choose what kind of tree you are, but you can choose how to grow. And you can decorate yourself in any way you like!”

This is a lovely concept that will underpin our art through the day and supports our key values of respecting individuality and celebrating difference. We will look at how trees differ in shape, colour and size and how different artists have represented them. We will then experiment with many different materials to paint and draw trees including paints, chalk and oil pastels, inks and watercolours. Children will also learn how to mix different tones of green. Children will then ‘paint’ their own tree using a material of their choice to then be decorated using collage. All the finished tress will then be displayed in a central location.

During the day, each year group will share their pictures and ideas across each school via Zoom.

The day could get a little messy with so many different art materials and a lot of green! For this day (Friday 11th), if you would like to send your children into school in old ‘non- uniform’ clothes, then that is absolutely fine. We do have art aprons, but probably not enough for the whole school and the ability to share them across classes is now limited.

Finally, thank you for all you amazing support with our flower day. We have yet to total all the donations as the money is currently being quarantined! I will let you know when we have a total but really appreciate your generosity!

17th June Update

We had lots of response to our survey last week regarding parent views on a return to school. Having spent some time working out the logistics and various 'what if' scenarios, I am pleased to say that we are able to invite years 2, 3, 4 & 5 back for at least 1 week before the end of term.

We have tried to be as creative with this plan as possible whilst following the necessary safety guidelines. Any decisions about this further opening to children have been based on the following information: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/preparing-for-the-wider-opening-of-schools-from-1-june/planning-guide-for-primary-schools#inviting-back-additional-pupils-where-there-is-capacity

Based on the survey responses and the fact that the year 5s have the least amount of time left in primary school, all the children in this year group who wish to can attend school from Monday 22nd June until the end of term, Friday 17th July.

We are, however, very keen to ensure that all children get at least a week in school before the end of term. As such, Years 2, 3 and 4 will be invited into school for 1 week per year group. In addition, we will be inviting all Pupil Premium and SEND children in to school for at least 2 days a week. Start and end times for each year group, along with lunch and breaks will be staggered to help ease the volume and movement of parents and pupils across the day.

We are so pleased to be able to offer time in school for so many pupils, and are really looking forward to their return!

10th June Update

We recently saw another development in the response to COVID 19 following the announcement that the government was not expecting further year groups to return to school prior to September. Whilst this is not a surprise, it is nonetheless very disappointing and I would imagine many of you are feeling frustrated that your child will still not be able to return to school.
There have been indications that schools may have some flexibility in opening to further groups if they have the capacity to do so. There are no plans to increase the current maximum class size (15) or relax social distancing rules. On this basis, to have everyone back in school, we would need 8 classrooms and 8 teachers! There have also been indications that a system of rotating year groups is not advisable due to potential cross contamination of premises and staff.
We are, however, looking at various scenarios for potentially opening the school to more children if we are allowed to do so. These include having an additional year group back full time, offering mixed ages classes or having all year groups back in for one week before term end.
All of these scenarios are very much dependent on the potential uptake of these options. We will be sending out a survey for you to share your thoughts. This survey also contains questions about home learning. As indicated in my last email, even if we are able to accommodate more children, remote learning will still be the only option for some. From the feedback received, we have already looked to make improvements, starting with individualised teacher and pupil Zoom sessions to discuss learning and provide support, along with trialing teaching small groups via Zoom.

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