Term 6 – Week 3: It’s hard to believe that three weeks have gone by already.
There is a new plan in place that will mean a big change in school. Mr Talbot has already been in touch with the parents/carers of the children in Years 5 and 6. The plan is for the Year 6s to come in until the end of next week, meaning they will have had four weeks in school. Year 6 will not need to come to school after 26th June.
From Monday 29th June, Year 5 children are invited to return to school instead of Year 6s. This will give them three weeks back in school. Please talk to Mr Talbot if you have a child in Year 5 or 6 and have any questions about this.
All children will end Term 6 on Friday 17th July. This will leave Mon 20th/Tues 21st for Year 6 to return to school to celebrate the end of their time at Castle Hill. Mr Talbot really hopes that all Year 6s will be able to come to school for those last two days. There will be no other children in school, so there will be lots of space to spread out and keep a safe distance from each other. We feel it is really important to say a proper goodbye to the children before we send them on their way to secondary schools.
Lots of families are still stuck in their own home schooling bubble. You have not been forgotten. The more families I speak to, the more great ideas I am hearing for how they are helping their children to keep learning. A daily reading activity is so important, but have you run out of books at a suitable level? The Oxford Owl website has lots of e reading books available for free
Or you could try some of these ideas:
Turn the subtitles on during their favourite programmes
Google the lyrics to their favourite songs
Search for key words in any text. If your child has been learning the word ‘the’; look for it in a magazine or newspaper. Maybe they could use a highlighter when they find it.
Read cookery books or recipes from the internet
Don’t forget non-fiction: leaflets, interest magazines, cereal packets, instruction manuals, street names and signposts, encyclopaedias or my son’s favourite The Guinness Book of World Records
Annuals, joke books and comics are fun and the shorter pieces of text can be appealing to reluctant readers
Maybe next week, you could change things up in your home school and let the child(ren) become the teacher. Let your child chose a topic or subject that interests them and set them the task of planning a lesson when they will teach you all about the subject. It doesn’t matter what the subject is, they will use multiple skills in finding out about it, choosing some facts to teach you, preparing information and pictures etc.
You might be able to go on a walk or a visit to gather information or objects. If the children are younger and need a bit more support, maybe you could work on it together and call on a grandparent, other parent or family member to be your ‘class’. You might need to work on your IT skills if your child needs to do the lesson over the phone or tablet (Zoom, Skype, Teams etc) or you may be asked to put your P.E. kit on. You never know what you might learn from your children!
Here are some more ideas of things to do at home (sorry if I have started to repeat myself, it’s been a while!):
Do sponge printing or potato printing
Learn a new card game
Write a journal
Experiment to find 10 things that float and sink
Build an indoor or outdoor fort
Make paper boats and see whose floats the longest
Use empty plastic bottles (with a little sand or rice in the bottom) and a soft ball or rolled up socks to play 10 pin bowling
Make a ‘Feely Bag’ – use a P.E. bag or a pillow case and put a selection of items in. Players have to guess the items without looking.
Draw or paint self-portraits
Make a daisy chain
Work together as a family to learn a short dance routine. Adults could look at TikTok for ideas!
There have been lots of changes to think about and it feels like time for some reflection; I have gone back to thinking about what I am grateful for at the moment.
Seeing more families at school – Nearly 100 children have been coming to school safely
PE with Joe – Over half a million pounds has been raised for NHS charities from the donation of his YouTube earnings and the sale of T-Shirts. After 13 weeks of Monday to Friday sessions, he needs a rest and he is cutting it down to three sessions a weeks. You can still work out with him at 9.00am but only on Mondays, Wednesdays and Saturdays from next week. You can go on his channel and do the workouts after school if you need to (I’m still going!)
Our cleaning team – They have been superheroes, working extra hard to keep the school as clean and safe as possible for us all
Good health - We are so grateful that no one here has got ill since we opened the school up to more pupils. The children and staff have worked together to follow the guidelines to keep us all as safe as possible
Easing of lockdown – We can see more family members and friends now and go shopping for non-essential items. Small steps towards returning to normality. However, I am seeing and hearing that people are getting more relaxed about social distancing. The guidelines still state that we must keep two metres apart from people not in our household/support bubble. To keep the infection rate down and prevent us having to go back into lockdown, we must remember to keep 2m apart and wash our hands thoroughly and regularly. This is the best defence we have got
Please don’t forget that Sharon and I are here, we are thinking of everyone and are happy to help with any questions, queries, worries or concerns you may have. You are not on your own although it must feel like it for so many families.
Keep in touch, stay alert and take care, Emma