I can hardly believe we are approaching the end of the Christmas term already, it seems to have flown by. The Nativity performance was a joy and we are so glad you will be able to share it with your family together in the comfort of your own home – why not get some popcorn and hot chocolate to make it a real Christmas event? The Christmas services at church have been such a wonderful time to think about the Christmas story – a huge thank you to Dana for arranging each class to have it’s own service to keep our children safe.
We are very hopeful that we will return in January to normal school life but we will have to watch and wait to see what unfolds over the next few weeks. We will keep you informed of any changes over the holidays. Please do LFT your children on Tuesday 4th evening so we can start school as clear as possible of Covid.
We want to wish you and your families a very happy Christmas and hope that 2022 will be a wonderful year for us all- we have so much to look forward to in the coming months.
Class 1 have had a really busy term learning all about their senses in Science, their favourite activity was tasting different flavours of yoghurt! In English Reception have been lucky to have two Zoom Author visits and we have now found out how great we are as illustrators.
A HUGE well done to the whole of KS1 for their Nativity performance, we as staff are very proud of the effort and performances made by all.
We are also really proud of how well behaved the children were on our visit to Smart Trees, so well behaved that Santa have us each a present and let us ride in his special trailer!
The class 2 children have made wind chimes in the forest. They have also been writing some wonderful weather poems.
Class 3 have been learning about Scotland in geography. They spent time researching The Highlands and then wrote their own leaflets.
We have also just finished our science week and conducted lots of experiments and learned lots about forces and magnets.
Class Four have had a particularly creative term.
We finished our recent art project – oil paintings in the style of Henri Rousseau. Apologies to everyone involved with washing the jumpers (and the children) that have come home green – I promise we did wear aprons!
These pieces took a lot of time and effort but we are very pleased with the results. They will come home when they eventually dry!
In the last two weeks of term, we turned our thoughts to design technology. The topic seasonal food leant itself perfectly to the designing, making and boxing of Christmas truffles. We hope that some made it home to be shared – no promises though!
This term, Class 5 have really been immersing themselves into the Ancient Greek civilisation and how it has influenced our lives today. We have compared the city states of Sparta and Athens and argued which we would have preferred to have been born into. Constantly, we have been surprised by how many of our words originated from Greek as well as our alphabet. Greek mathematicians seem to have discovered an awful lot about mathematics such as prime numbers. There have been many opportunities to experience first-hand democracy including voting for our school council representatives. In art and design we have learnt about ancient Greek pottery and copied their patterns and designs; we have also studied their architecture and begun to recognise its influence on architecture in Blockley and beyond. In design and technology, we have made and painted our own pots and then designed and made bespoke packaging. Finally, we have written and published our own Heracles-inspired Greek myths!
Pupils in years 4 and 5 went to Viney Hill Christian Adventure Centre in the Royal Forest of Dean on the annual residential in November. They had a brilliant time and took part in crate stacking, wall climbing, team games, night walk, tunneling, low ropes, and archery.
Classes have voted for their new school council reps this year.
Class 1 Phinn and Summer
Class 2 Annabel and Rafe
Class 3 Martha and Harry
Class 4 Cora and Lottie
Class 5 Alana and Toby
They will be organising a fundraising event in the next term to raise money for outdoor seating for welly changing at playtimes. Other exciting suggestions and events to come in the New Year.
Thanks to FOS for all their support this year. You have all done amazingly fundraising in such challenging circumstances. Many events could not run without the support of FOS. Thank you.
Pupils were able to learn about the importance of Remembrance Day with a river of poppies. They also had the opportunity to represent the school at the church service.
Each class enjoyed a tailored session at church where the Bible story of the birth of Jesus was retold in a thoughtful and reflective way.
We continually monitor the national and local picture with respect to Covid and follow the national and local advice accordingly. Staff and governors keep our risk assessment and management plan under review. We are pleased to say that pupils off with Covid number less than 3%.
We have been issued with the following guidance:
School attendance is mandatory for all pupils of compulsory school age. The shielding programme has now ended and people who were previously considered clinically extremely vulnerable (CEV) are no longer advised to shield. Continued absence on the basis of previous shielding guidance should be marked as unauthorised, unless there is written confirmation from an individual’s health professional advising of a requirement for additional precautions.
We are pleased to inform you that we have two new governors on our governing board. Mr D Graham joins the board elected unopposed as a parent governor. Ms M Swain joins the board as a foundation governor, appointed by the Diocese. Thanks to both for giving up their time to support the school in this important strategic role.
All pupils in school have an Office 365 Teams account and will have received their log in. If a pupil has to self-isolate at home due to government guidance, work will be uploaded onto Teams by Monday morning for that week. Use your log in to access this work. Please contact the school office if you encounter any difficulty with this.
We are excited to announce that we will be launching a school Twitter account. This will be a way of ensuring the school community is fully involved in school life which is especially hard during this time of Covid. We plan to upload photos and news so that all can see what is happening in school but understand that some parents may not want the image of their child shared in this way. Further details and permission regarding this will be sent out in due course.
St George’s Hall car park is not part of the school and therefore school has no jurisdiction over it’s use. However, we do want all to remain safe while dropping off and picking up your children. Can we therefore remind all drivers to drive sensibly when in the village and entering/exiting the car park. Equally please ensure all children are safely escorted across the car park to help prevent an accident from occurring. Many thanks.
Food in School
Please can we remind everyone not to send your child to school with nuts or nut bars in their snack/lunch bag. This is to keep those with allergies safe. Many thanks for your help.
End of term
A reminder that school finishes earlier on Friday 17th and there is no After School Care. Please can all pupils in classes 1 and 2 be collected at 2pm. Pupils in classes 3, 4 and 5 need to be collected at 2.10pm.
Gloucestershire County Council continue to run the HAF and HAP programme. Detail of this are below. Some of these activities are open to Free School Meal pupils only, others are open to all. They ask that all participants keep up to date with the latest Government Covid guidance and follow it accordingly.
There is just one more week for families to book their HAF/HAP activities. For more information and to book, they can visit https://www.gloucestershire.gov.uk/haf/
Should the school need to close for any reason (including snow, flood etc) this will be listed on the Gloucestershire Closed Schools website. We will also endeavor to send out a ParentPay message and place the information on the school website.
We are looking forward to welcoming all pupils back to school on Wednesday 5th January (4th is an INSET day for staff only). At the time of writing we are expecting school to function as it has since September, at the start of term 3. The school gates will open at 8.40am for pupils to enter and close at 8.50am. All pupils can enter in either gate. If government guidance alters relating to attendance at school, you will be informed via a ParentPay message.
Have a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.
Blockley School Staff