Our Spring Term ended on a very positive note with a lovely display of Easter Bonnets on parade followed by some exciting decorated egg-rolling. Prizes were provided by the steadfast PTFA.
Our student teacher from The University of Bedford, Miss Sarah Glover, begins her main block of teaching experience with our Reception children having successfully completed the early stage with merit.
For our class topics this first half-term we will range from investigating 'forces and movement' and 'vehicle' (Science & DT), 'seaside holidays in the past' (History), 'visiting a place of worship' (RE) in Years 1& 2 to studying 'minibeasts', 'art from nature and natural forms' and 'growing plants at school and home across all ages'.
A busy summer term is in prospect starting with our Maypole Dancing contribution to the village Mayday Festival on the Knoll on Monday 4th May at 11.00am. Please come and cheer the children on.
22 March 2009
With the first of the frogs cavorting in our pond and the daffodils in full bloom we have left the memory of the snow behind. But not the 'Snowman'; a poem by Shel Silverstein ably recited at our Mother's Day Assembly which charts the fate of all snow people in Spring. Do they ever see July? Our older children paid moving tributes to all that their mothers do for us and how grateful we should be with just the right seasoning of humour. Lord...show us how to live teaching us to appreciate, show us how to live so that we don't infuriate!
Pancakes were served and enjoyed by all (a day late on Ash Wednesday due to time-tabling issues!) and with good discussions about 'shriving' and not wasting food.
Red Nose Day gave us all the excuse to trade in our subdued blue uniform for brilliant and varied red shades. Our 24 children raised well over £60 between them and the thoughtful responses amidst the fun was a tribute to the community, particularly the PTFA, who engaged in the day.
Our Village Pre-School came to spend the morning with their Foundation friends and quickly became confident users of our facilities. We potted thirty 'baby' trees to grow on for the Community Woodland which will be planted later in the year. After our morning exertions PTFA helpers served a jacket potato lunch for which we were grateful.
Our Partnership with Emberton School continues with planning for further curriculum visits and looking forward to the summer season and our main educational trips and Sport's Days to share. In our Headteacher's absence the Partnership has been progressively stabilising and continuing to foster developmental aspects of our teaching and learning activities. Our adoption by the Tickford Park Senior Management Team of Mrs Ann Tobia and her Deputy Mrs Linda Coveney has been providing expertise and continuity at the strategic level of school life. To all our partners we, the staff and Governors, are most grateful and pleased to be working alongside such generous and skilled colleagues to ensure a seamless educational experience for the children in our care.
Inevitably at this time in the school year we look further ahead to the Induction Process for our next year's cohort with further visits planned from our Pre-School. These will be to share and extend their experiences as well ensure that the seamless transition we usually enjoy from pupils who pass through both settings is maintained. So, many thanks are due to our Pre-School colleagues for their effort and expertise in preparing their children for the future in 'big school'.
21 February 2009
"Christmas! that was along time ago" remarked one of our early years cohort...and so it seems to be so with the work covered, children’s progress 'tracked' and plans laid down for next half-term.
First our congratulations to Miss Kate Adamson our student teacher in Key Stage One for passing this part of her course with us with commendations from her tutors, our staff and the children she taught. It is always sad to lose a team member of even such short standing but we bask in the reflected glow of her achievement. We are glad to wish her well while having been able to offer such a valuable and high quality part of her training.
Our trip to Stantonbury Theatre to watch a production of The Lighthouse Keeper's Lunch was enthralling and led to many smiles and interesting follow-up language work. Many thanks to the PTFA for funding and organising this trip. One of the resulting exercises in mathematics was to weigh the ingredients for Mrs Grinling's (The Lighthouse Keeper’s wife) Peach Surprise which we made for Miss Adamson's leaving lunch.
Rev Mandy and Ann Walker came and gave us a very creative morning session of Godley Play on the theme of Creation. The children in Key Stage One responded very well to this inspiring method of exploring Bible stories through guided play and celebration.
The Golden Boat Project ended with our reception cohort re-enacting Max's journey to the land of the Wild Things and promising to come out of role when they returned to their families. Similarly Year 2 segued effortlessly from the works of Beatrix Potter to poetry appreciation and writing on the theme of Really looking.
We are about to welcome back Mrs Emma Ravilious from her maternity leave. She will soon resume her Higher Level Teaching Assistant duties across the school. Many thanks are due to Mrs Liz Leicester who has been covering most of Emma's work and who will therefore be seen less often. We do however hope to call on her capable supply teacher skills when needed in the future.
Mrs Donna Ramsden has been appointed as part-time Teaching Assistant. The Governors are pleased to be able to also announce the temporary appointment of 'our own' Mrs Paula Noble to a temporary part-time Teaching Assistant role supporting Special Educational Needs across the school.
The snow came and closed us for a couple of days
but many thanks to the efforts of Barry Tofts to make it safe daily to enter the site even though the accumulation took some time to be dispersed.
On a final note we can announce a number of new initiatives to be developed. The school (along with Sherington Pre-School) will be planting small trees in the Parish's Stonepits Community Woodland; wee have been given free trees from the Woodland Trust which we will grow on in pots for a few months until ready to plant out. Many thanks to Ian Pretty of Acorn Nurseries for the gift of pots. The Potato Council have selected us for a free gift of seed potatoes for our veg plots. But most pleasing of all we have been awarded £3000 to engage in a 'Creative Partnership Enquiry' to provide learning opportunities for our children and staff alike. Details to follow in due course but we anticipate an exciting and busy summer term.
1 February 2009
We hope you had a lovely Christmas and would like to wish you a Happy New Year. Mrs Bourne would like to be included in these remarks and, as she is about to begin her second round of treatment, is looking forward positively to the coming year.
The new calendar year started with many smiles and a renewed energy (including the staff) with exciting new topics to engage interest. Beatrix Potter's work is undergoing a revival across Milton Keynes as Year 2 pupils follow a scheme of work drawing on these classic stories with varied characters worthy of Charles Dickens. Few schools can be as well resourced as Sherington however thanks to the generosity of Paula and Natasha Noble. A fine collection of Beatrix Potter character soft toys has given the topic an added dimension and the children have responded enthusiastically.
A whole day workshop with our Year 2 friends from Emberton saw the
Partnership enter its third term in fine form. The simultaneous cry of "Lisa's back" meant that a sample of Mr McGregor's Vegetable Soup made from our home-grown potatoes, parsnips, leeks, celeriac and pumpkin (followed by pudding with custard!) was available to keep the momentum going.
Year 1 began their Golden Boat journeys with a Pirate expedition to various islands with buried treasure. Second expeditions in new guises were planned as a 'Pupil Voice' activity with many forms of writing being exercised.
All the children responded very well to Mrs Isabel Grant's (our Education Welfare Officer) assemblies to reinforce good time-keeping with her 'Early Bird' puppets. Even on the first day a pupil had told mum 'We must be Early Birds!' And they were. Well done children.
As the New Year starts we are pleased to welcome Mrs Ann Tobia as Interim Headteacher and look forward to working with her. Ann has already met staff, shared in our staff training day and will be working closely with the Governors to meet the ongoing challenges that all schools face from her 'home' base at Tickford Park. She has welcomed Sherington School staff into this bigger 'family' and we will be taking advantage of their resources such as staff-training as well as hopefully contributing some of our experience and expertise.
Mrs Tobia writes, "Just a few words to introduce myself to you as your interim head teacher. A number of you will have met me already and I hope to meet all of you in the not too distant future. I look forward to working in partnership with you and all the staff and governors at Sherington to continue to provide an excellent education for each child in our care". Kind regards - Ann Tobia
6 January 2009
Our partnership work with Emberton School continues apace with two events completed and several more planned. 'Christmas in the Park' saw both schools making cards and calendars from natural materials found in Campbell Park on a cold but dry day with Park Rangers Nicky and Nicky. A shared Christingle Concert in Emberton Church with Rev Cadell complemented the children collecting loose change in special candles for The Children's Society and leading to Sherington's own Christingle Service with Rev Mandy in St Laud's.
When 'The Bishop' drops in to school we know it will be an interesting time. Accompanied by Rev Mandy, Bishop Alan was questioned in some detail about his life, role, interests and views. The children responded well to his sympathetic replies and were able to send him off to our Partnership school with one of our last pumpkins to cook for his family.
The New Year will see more classroom cooperation between the two Year 2 cohorts as they explore the classic tales of Beatrix Potter in Literacy and other areas of the curriculum. Reception and Year 1 children at Sherington will be undertaking imaginative journeys in their recently constructed 'Golden Boat' as part of their Pupil Voice contributions.
The Nativity play this year was simply called 'The Nativity' but the children's performances made it far from mundane. There were abundant smiles, brows furrowed in concentration and full involvement by our classroom helpers, children and staff during rehearsals and final performances. The children were able to bring their fresh appreciation to this story and Mrs Borner's musical expertise raised the production to excellence. Comments in church after the performances ranged from special, wonderful, moving, excellent, to a simple but heartfelt didn't they do well? And many 'thank you's'.
Special thanks to Celia Wing, Betty Feasey, Barbara Gotts, Joyce Tranter, Sarah Reid, Melanie Duncan, Eve O'Sullivan, Helen Vale, Jo Cowley, Lara Bruce, Bryony Anderson, Sue Temple and Paula Noble for their help throughout the term in various areas and activities. Betty, Celia and Helen kept the momentum going until the end of term with a lively Christmas Workshop which saw the children engaged in a variety of seasonally creative activities.
Thanks also to Mrs Donna Ramsden for her Teaching Assistant role during Mrs Ravilious' maternity leave.
We said thank you and goodbye to Mrs Collett, our Interim Headteacher who came for a month and stayed for the term, at our Emberton Christingle Concert. We look forward to working with Mrs Ann Tobia from Tickford Park School who fills this role for us next term.
At the risk of his embarrassment the staff would like to thank one person who stays well behind the scenes but whose efforts, heart and soul has kept the school on an even course in these uncertain times; our Chair of Governors Nigel Anderson.