Primary Newsletter

Number 511............................... 12th February 2022

Director's Message

The story of this week can be told in pictures:

Parents were back in school for a 'meet the teacher' coffee afternoon. Many thanks to everyone who attended and a big thank you to Daman for her organisation.

School photos took place and I am sure that the results will be really impressive. I don't often say I am disappointed in our senior students but we did not have many risk takers when it came to the funny face picture. Perhaps they should look at the UK sport of gurning! Below are some of our not so funny face pictures.
DP1 have gone into overdrive with their CAS projects. We celebrated Valentines Day with a red, pink and white dress code followed by roses and candy cups as gifts to the ones we care about.
P1 also organised our annual mud fest. Students voted for the teacher they would like to see covered in mud! This year's "winner" was Mr. Grimshawe.

DP1 managed to raise around 2,000,000 shillings in just one day.

Primary News This Week

If you don't ask then you'll never know.

I love it when young children get to the stage where they reply to everything with 'why?' and 'how?' and 'what makes so and so happen?' I also love children's own ideas about how and why things happen! What's to say an accurate scientific explanation is always the 'right answer'! In a science test, yes! However, we can just as easily turn children's inquisitiveness into an opportunity to stretch their imaginations and exploit their creativity! Maybe we use our adult power of inquisitiveness to ask children what they think the reason for something is, or how do they think something happens! How much fun it is to compare reality with fantasy and then discover what each is founded upon! Inquiry based learning is so much more than just finding things out!

This Week's Super Learners of the week for being extra inquisitive...

Year 6 Hlalanathi Gangi

Year 5 Ryan Mutwota and Rafi Damani

Year 4 Benjamin Ashemeza (4DPB) and Kaka Karen Ssesanga (4DA)

Year 3 Atharvi Patel

Year 2 Hridhaan Raval

Year 1 Liesel Msukwa

Reception Miles Mubalya and Leo Kalinzi

KG3 Harel Mangu

KG2 Arie Sakaria

Primary Specialist Teacher Awards...

Primary Musician of the week is Amaanya Sachdeva in year 1 for recalling all the songs and chants learnt so far and actively performing with enthusiasm (awarded by Ms Janice)

Primary Artist of the week is Michimasa Usui in year 3 for creating a beautiful and intricate line design (awarded by Mr Nsimbi)

Primary Computer Technologist of the week is Miia Merrifield in year 4 for using a simple flow chart to describe the internet as a network of connected computers around the world (awarded by Mr Nsimbi)

Primary French Speaker of the week is Chahaat Goyal year 6 for active participation in class and sharing ideas constructively

Year 5 yummy fractions!

Year 5 baked up some fractions for our Valentines party, scaling recipes by converting between improper and mixed fractions for a taste of math! A real life context for maths making fractions one of our favourite topics so far!

It’s Alive!

The year 6 students have spent this week learning about the skeletal system; the next stop in our journey to a better understanding of the amazing human body. The spine, in particular, was the focus of this week’s science lessons. The information super highway (spinal cord) of the body is protected by our vertebrae. Students modelled the key components of the spine through using straws (vertebrae) and pipe cleaners (disks and spinal cord). The second half of this term will see students learn all about the muscular system, immune system, and nutrition to keep our bodies fit and healthy. Year 6 are so well informed to teach their younger peers and lead by example.

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Forces in action

Year 3 enjoyed some practical hands on investigative learning. The children were exploring how different magnetic poles attract and repel each other. Why don't you test their learning at home and ask them what happens when two poles meet such as North-North? South-North? South-South?

The wheels on the bus go...

Or rather, 'the children on the bus go...'

In Kindergarten the children are currently learning all about transportation and vehicles. This week the focus was on buses! The teachers took the children on an exciting bus trip around the school campus and for many, it was their first experience of riding on public transport. What is planned for the week after half term Ms Dima, helicopters?

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The Wheels on the bus go ROUND & ROUND...

Green Fingers

Output is rewarded by input and we all know the story of The Little Red Hen. The more effort you put into something, the better the result! Year 4 children almost got away without the hard work and the physical graft involved in preparing their plot of land for the planting of a variety of seeds when we return after the half-term break.

Mr Darren: Hi Mrs Wise, I'm going to pop into school during the holidays to prepare the garden for the ecology club's first planting session after half term.

Me: No you are not, Mr Darren, they need to do that themselves!

Mr Darren: Really? I can't possibly ask the children to do this tough job!"

Me: Of course you can, it's their land, they need to prepare it!"

Mr Darren: Well, I suppose it will reduce the workload and also divide the hand calluses between us all!

Me: Of course, and they will also learn the full cycle of growing from seed, get the children digging!

The children had so much fun and all got stuck in. They are so protective over their little plot of land already and it is yet to include a plant, crop or seed. They have even made a sign to deter pests and intruders!

STEM Club news (Science, Technology, Engineering, Maths)

STEM club children have been having lots of fun putting their problem solving skills, communication skills and cooperation skills into action solving STEM challenges such figuring out how to fit their bodies through paper, how to build coin rollercoasters and marble mazes! I can't wait to find out what the second term of STEM club will bring!

Board games club is buzzing!

In addition to teaching children about teamwork, patience and how to win and lose gracefully, board games can actually benefit kids' brains and language development. Here are some incredible benefits of board games:

1. Board games offer opportunities for early learning. Even simple games help young players identify colours, count spaces, and develop hand-eye coordination and dexterity in moving cards and pieces around the board. Plus, learning to wait your turn and follow the rules are important lessons.

2. They get older kids' brains buzzing, too. Board games are an easy way to encourage healthy brain development in older kids and teens and strategy games are useful in helping the frontal lobes of the brain develop.

3. They boost their language skills. Board games can be a sneaky way of helping school-aged kids work on skills they’re struggling with. A reluctant reader can expand their vocabulary and flex their spelling skills.

4. They sharpen your child's focus. Board games can help lengthen a child's attention span.

5. They teach the value of teamwork. Board games often offer kids meta-messages about life: Your luck can change in an instant, for better or for worse. But in addition to teaching them that nothing is guaranteed, board games are a good way to encourage kids of different ages to team up and work together — something they'll need to do throughout life.

Coming up...

Phonics Workshop for Parents

Last week I mentioned that teachers of KG3, Reception and Year 1 children were planning on hosting an informative phonics workshop for parents to be held some time next half term. This is now planned to take place on Tuesday 1st March at 8am. Please see the attached file for more information and we look forward to welcoming you.

Parent Teacher Meetings

These will go ahead on the Tuesday and Thursday of the first week back after half term. The file attached includes all of the necessary information.

Term 2 Curriculum Overviews, Spelling Shed and Oxford Owl

On Day 1 of next term, teachers will send home an updated Curriculum Overview to inform parents of curriculum content to be covered in each subject area under the class topic. Aspects of learning within each subject area will also be shown so that parents are aware of what learning is taking place in school. The parent overviews are useful in terms of involving parents in their child's learning by giving enough insight for parents to hold conversations with children about each area of learning. Your parental support is both essential and extremely valuable.

After half term, we will also be re-launching EdShed with an aim to following in last year's Year 6's footsteps to become the highest weekly scoring class on the entire planet! Spellings of key words (high frequency words and common exception words) will be made available for all children to practise on EdShed, with weekly word lists sent home in spelling books to practise rules, patterns and conventions taught in class each week.

We will also be using Oxford Owl again to ensure that parents are aware of the reading level that children should be accessing and the teachers will assign books from the online library to groups of children and individuals for them to share with parents and practise at home.

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Lastly, what a lovely end to the week

Primary children wanted to help raise money for the DP student's chosen cause by joining in with wearing red or pink and donating 5000 shillings in exchange for a valentines card. The 200 cards were made with love by willing staff who were also keen to share positive, kind and lovely messages. Here are a few pictures that encapsulate the mood felt today around the campus...
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DP1 have gone into overdrive with their CAS projects. We celebrated Valentines Day with a red, pink and white dress code followed by roses and candy cups as gifts to the ones we care about.