I hope your children have enjoyed walking and playing in the snow this week. It has been a helpful distraction for us all and I hope you have had some fun with your children over the last few days.
As we approach half-term, I hope the children will be able to take a break from their screens next week and enjoy the change. Perhaps it is an opportunity for more playtime, outdoor walks, reading, music practice and creative crafts; away from the pressures of a fixed timetable.
I anticipate that the break will help the children return to the virtual classroom with renewed enthusiasm and energy. Hopefully this will only be for two weeks after half-term.
We are planning for a full return on Monday 8th March, but probably will not hear any more details from the Government about schools returning until February 22nd, the day we return after half-term. A return on the 8th March would allow us almost a full month before the Easter holidays. We will continue to follow Government guidelines and as we want to reduce the risk of sending any "bubbles" home; we will aim to work with class bubbles until the end of the Spring term. This will make clubs, sport and music more challenging, although still possible in some form, in the short term; but the priority must be, learning back at school in the classroom and enabling our children to socialise with their form peers again. I hope that the return to school after the Easter holidays will be more normal.
We are very grateful to the PTA for their generous donation of two outdoor musical instruments. Although the arrival of snow has hindered progress, you can see that the Xylophone is now installed and ready for use. I have no doubt that these musical instruments will give our children much pleasure over many years to come. It is also something for our children to look forward to using, once they return to school.
Many thanks for all you have done over the last six weeks supporting your children in so many ways at home with their live lessons and home learning. It has been incredibly difficult for so many people. I am also very grateful to all my colleagues to for their resilience, tenacity and perseverance; even with some additional challenges this week in the form of difficult driving conditions to keep the school open and still provide on-line lessons.
Many thanks for your support, emails and treats we have received. It is much appreciated by all of us.
Postponed - Once we have a confirmed date of when the children are returning to school, we will confirm the new date
It will take place by Zoom as in the Autumn term but we would like the opportunity to assess the children back in the classroom before speaking to Parents.
No competition this year, but if you would like to dress up as a favourite character for your zoom lessons on the day, then please do.
Would you like to participate in some drama and dance? Well, Mrs Dickinson (Year 6 and Drama teacher) and the wonderful Mrs Lewis (Dance teacher) have decided to run away to the Circus for half term.
Many of the children will remember Mrs Lewis as she often teaches dance to the juniors and offers a Musical Theatre club.
They are offering a special deal. 3 hours of drama, dance and circus related fun for just £15 per child. Keep your children active, engaged and happy. They might also see some of their friends taking part too.
Contact Mrs Dickinson on email@example.com for more information or to book your place.
Academic Year 2020-2021
Spring Term 2021
Tuesday 5th January 2021 - Thursday 1st April 2021
Half Term: Monday 15th February - Friday 19th February 2021
Summer Term 2021
Monday 19th April - Friday 16th July 2021
Half Term: Monday 31st May 2021 - Friday 4th June 2021
May Day: Monday 3rd May 2021
Academic Year 2021 - 2022
Autumn Term 2021
Monday 6th September – Friday 10th December 2021
Half Term: Monday 18th October – Friday 29th October 2021
Spring Term 2022
Tuesday 4th January – Friday 1st April 2022
Half Term: Monday 14th February – Friday 18th February 2022
Summer Term 2022
Tuesday 19th April – Wednesday 20th July 2022
Half Term: Monday 30th May – Friday 3rd June 2022
May Day: Monday 2nd May 2022
Class 6 Art - Class 6 have produced these tasty designs of Imaginative Ice-cream Sundaes. Pupils used water-colour pencils to create mouth-watering effects of fruit, ice-cream, sauces, whipped cream and sprinkles.
We used observational drawing skills to capture the shapes, reflections and proportions of the glass, then imaginative drawing skills to combine the ingredients to make the sundaes.
When Mr Park came up with the plan of preparing for the Cricket season on my return to school I have to say I was a little surprised. But it was a beautiful sunny day ( good for cricket ) no wind ( good for cricket ) and a lovely flat wicket ( good for cricket ). He fitted me up with all the protective gear I would need and laid out some spots where he would bowl and instructed me in the art of On Drive, Off Drive and Pull Shots. What should I have to worry about?
Plenty actually. It was clear that Mr Park has also been struggling to work on his bowling technique throughout lockdown as you can see, none of his deliveries hit the mark.!! Funny enough he says every bowl was perfect!! What is he getting at?
As a group, the staff at Grantham Prep felt the need to set themselves a challenge; to get outside and to get active. We all know the physical and mental benefits that this can bring us and this seemed even more important as we are spending so much more time sat in front of a computer screen.
Mrs Dickinson is part of a group who are trying to collectively 'Walk to New York' during February - however, there are over 40 people taking part in this. This got us thinking...how about walking to our sister IES schools?
The challenge quickly became an idea. We realised that St John's, as our nearest, is just over 208 miles away, and that if 10 people joined the challenge, that would only be 20.8 miles each in a month. Several of us own dogs, walk to work, or simply enjoy a walk at the weekends already. This sounded manageable. We are all logging our steps/miles and the Office are keeping a track of where we have got to.
Then we took it a step further.....which IES school, can we collectively walk the distance to this school year?
We will update you in March, with how we are getting on.
Happy Chinese New Year to you all! We have had a break from our Space topic this week and instead focused some of our attention to learning about how the Chinese culture celebrates its New Year festival. How many of you can say Happy New Year in Chinese? Well Pre-School can!
The children have made Dragon puppets, Chinese lanterns, Chinese fans and scary Dragon masks. Argh! Maybe some of your children will be having a Chinese meal this week? If so try eating it with chopsticks. It’s not as easy as you might think! The children have also watched dragon dances and learnt how to say Happy New Year in Chinese!
Pre-school have enjoyed playing in the snow this week. It is so pretty to look at from our window. It almost makes Mrs Whinney feel that driving in the snow is worthwhile after all! The children have certainly enjoyed some Hot (slightly warm) Chocolate at snack time as a treat. According to George it really warms his toes up!
I hope you enjoy Aneira’s little song! She has been teaching it to everyone in Pre-school.
Have a lovely half term break everyone. I know Pre-school have worked very hard this half term. Hopefully the next half term brings us altogether again and sunnier days!
In Reception the children have had lots of fun this week learning about Chinese New Year which begins this year on Friday 12th February. The whole week has been cross curricular covering this great Chinese celebration. The children started off the week learning about the naming of the years in the Chinese Zodiac, where the years were named after the 12 animals. Of course 2021 is the Year of the Ox. They all wrote about a different animal and then found out which animal year they were named after. They were either born in the Year of the Goat or the Year of the Monkey. I nearly had a class full of monkeys!!
The children have also made and decorated their own Chinese lanterns and then painted some super dragon masks ready for their dragon dance! It was a very colourful sight.
In Maths we have continued doing lots of work on addition and subtraction using the Chinese celebration as the focus. The children were adding up and taking away lanterns, dragons, fans and many of the animals in the story. It was great to see them working out all the calculations independently.
With the cold spell this week the children still managed to get outside and complete some of the building challenges that they had been set.
Well done everyone, once again I am very proud of all the fabulous learning that you are doing at both school and home.
INTERNET SAFETY DAY
Internet Safety Day this year was on February 9th and in Reception the children spent time learning about how to keep themselves safe while they are online. After watching a PowerPoint with Buddy the Dog's Internet Safety Story the children had to follow his advice and then had to design their own Safety Poster.
Class One have a special visitor and an incredibly busy week!
In Class One we have rounded off the first half term of 2021 in style! Through the wonder of modern technology, we were lucky enough to meet Laura James, the Author of a wonderful collection of children's story books. Class Two joined us at this event. Whilst on Zoom, Laura shared details of her career as an author and how ideas for characters and plots develop and come to life within her books. The children had so many questions to ask. Laura answered them fully and we all learned so much. Our guest was an absolute delight. We left the event inspired and raring to improve our writing skills. Alongside this great experience, the children have been learning about 2D shapes and tessellation in Numeracy, Internet safety and how to keep their personal data secure, how to create the different effects of movement and texture whilst observing and reinterpreting famous artwork, creating pencil holders inspired by nature and finding out how the changes made by Florence Nightingale during the Crimean War still influence modern medicine and hospital care. The children have been absolutely incredible over the past six weeks; attending Zoom lessons, accessing Edmodo, handing in work of an excellent quality and most of all retaining their sunny dispositions during these very difficult days. I am immensely proud of each and every member of the Class One Team and extremely grateful to all parents for their unfailing support. Have a brilliant half term holiday, everyone.
On Friday afternoon Class Two have their regular Art lesson. It is an ideal time for creativity as we are winding down from the end of week choc-filled with hard work and achievement. There is certainly no rest for the wicked!
Last Friday the children were set with a simple brief: 'Draw a cup'. From this, they could extend their creativity by creating a vibrant background with their own choice of colours and patterns. What is incredibly amazing is how different the same cup can look!
Some of the children spurred on their creativeness, even further, by sketching some cups they have in the house.
The last week before half term has been as varied and busy as usual in Class 3. And there has even been time to have fun in the snow!
In Maths this week we turned our attention to formal multiplication and division, function machines with negative numbers and interpreting data. We have also had some tense times tables bingo games to warm up the brain cells at the beginning of the lessons.
Our comprehension focus this week was the opening extract of Mr Stink by David Walliams, which made us giggle. The children worked hard to answer inference questions about the text. We also had another giggle in one of our grammar lessons when I had to eat Jaffa cakes in different ways during the lesson so that the children could write sentences with fronted adverbials about me. It's a hard life!
During the History lesson we had a look at the Ancient Greek Olympic games. We learnt about who could and could not take part and the different events that were held. The children also had a chance to make their own winning wreaths. We also talked about our first History lesson after half term when we will all be dressing up as one of the Greek gods or goddesses. I can't wait.
In STEAM we thought about how plastic was ruining the environment and how we as humans could help. The children designed some posters to encourage people to do their bit and help.
The children have continued coding in ICT and I have been sent a good example of what can be achieved programming a game called The Hungry Snake.
So all that's left to say is thank you for a super half term and please enjoy a well earned rest over the half term.
Class 4 pupils had fun last Friday, helping to celebrate Ahaan and Dante's birthday 'Virtual-style'. We held a mini special 'Happy Birthday Zoom' where pupils shared the birthday cards that they had designed and made, sang 'Happy Birthday', and even had a party dance!
Although we couldn't share the delicious birthday cakes, we all had fun and it was a lovely way to end the week.
Class 4's Productive Week
Well done Class 4 on another very productive and interactive week.
I've been so pleased with the positive way pupils have engaged in their Zoom lessons, and impressed by the quality of the work posted back.
We 've achieved lots this week -starting with an exercise video every morning to get motivated and to keep us active (the boys at school love the Marvel heroes exercise video).
We're practising inference skills in comprehension, and completed a 'Speaking and Listening' session, where everyone talked about their favourite way to travel - hopefully it won't be too long before we can travel freely - until then we'll keep walking, scooting and jogging!
In Mathematics, we're getting to grips with decimals - with pupils taking advantage of the 'e-text books' assigned to them.
We're completing our Knitwear design project in Art by looking at the beautiful patterns in Aran knitwear, and designing accessories of gloves, mittens and hats - very apt given the weather!
We followed the BBC 'Internet Safety Day' in PHSE, very important nowadays, given the dependency on technology.
In History pupils have been looking at AngloSaxon artefacts - then designing brooches and buckles.
Finally - we've been studying the Arctic in Geography, and will have a challenge to start in STEAM (and possibly complete over the half term - this will be optional - as it will depend on parent's help!).
Pupils will be asked to design something for an 'Arctic Bake Challenge' - where they can submit a drawing of a cake, biscuit or cup-cake - decorated / constructed to represent any feature of the Arctic.
If pupils want to try some baking, it would be great to see if they can turn their designs into real bakes - please send us your photographs if you can.
Many thanks class 4 for keeping going during this tricky term - I hope you all have a wonderful half term, and I look forward to seeing your Arctic Bake Challenge pictures.
This week class 5 in English have been researching different birds that you can find in the UK. They have been inspired by the RSPB’s Big Bird Watch and have created some excellent pieces of work on a variety of birds
Following on form last weeks newsletter article, where Mrs Dickinson asked Class 6 to create their own board games, Tessa shows us her very creative Simpsons board game. What a lot of attention to detail, well done Tessa.
Our week in Class 6
In class 6 this week, we have been charging ahead with our reading of Holes by Louis Sachar. Once we complete the first two parts, we are now planning our own idea for a story, based on our own ideas of what happens next. It can follow any of the characters after Stanley and Zero leave Camp Green Lake - no spoilers here!
Tuesday was Safer Internet Day, so we used our time on PSHE to consider how trustworthy the information on the internet is; and of course a reminder on how to keep safe online.
We discussed the thorny and complex issue of plagiarism in History. We are now studying the development of rights for the masses and have looked at some of the events, such as The Peasants Revolt, of the Middle Ages. The children are needing to tackle quite a lot of independent research during their online learning; it is essential that they use more than one source to widen their understanding, but also not to simply copy and paste the information into a document and hand it in as their own work. I urged them to read the source material, make some notes, and to write up their answers in their own words.
STEAM this week saw the launch of The Big Grantham Bake Off Challenge - I hope that lots of them will have a go at this over the half term break - I know I will - and I am really looking forward to sharing the results of this when we return after half term.