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Penshurst Primary School

Weekly Blog

All the latest from the Headteacher and Head of School

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  • WEEK 35 - Friday 24 June 2022

    Published 24/06/22

    What a lovely week it has been! I cannot believe the fantastic weather we have had for Sports Days and I would like to thank you all for turning out in your droves to support the children. I’ve got to admit that the Nursery (FS1) event is possibly the highlight of the year for me - unbelievably cute! A special shout out to our House Captains needs to be made as they did a sterling job of running events and supporting the younger children; I could not be more proud of these Year 6 pupils and the high school are so lucky to have them from September. Many of you have emailed in to say how brilliant the older pupils were in encouraging and helping the younger ones and I have passed your comments on to the Year 6 teachers to let them know.

    I am sorry but I do need to have a little bit of a rant this week…..

    Over the past week, we have seen a huge increase in unkind behaviours outside of school on social media. The majority of the incidents have taken place in Years 4/5/6 and mostly on Whatsapp. Can I remind you that the age of consent for this app is now 16+ and therefore none of our pupils should be using this platform. Unfortunately we are finding that most of our pupils are in groups on this app and while I appreciate it is your parental decision to allow this, we are spending hours and hours in the school week dealing with fallings out, unkind comments and at times borderline bullying that are all happening outside school hours on this media platform.

    Whilst I appreciate that we have to get involved with these incidents, I feel that I need to ask for your support. If you intend for your child to have access to these groups despite the age rating, please could you frequently check your child's messages and the groups they are part of. Inevitably, incidents outside school affect behaviours in school and the impact in school is time spent out of class dealing with these behaviours for both staff and pupils.

    We will of course continue to investigate incidents brought to our attention and actions can be: circles, parental meetings, sanctions given, repeated online safety education or reports made to police. We speak to our children about online safety and cyberbullying on a weekly basis through assemblies, IT lessons, morning circles and dedicated online learning circles. All I ask is that you continue to support us by checking your child's phone, reporting any unkind behaviours and talking to your child about what they post on a forum. Rant over!

    Over the next four weeks, the pace does not slacken in school as having completed assessments, we now begin to fill in any gaps that these tests have highlighted.

    Mrs J Spencer

    Head of School

    Key Dates:  
    Summer Fair                            Wednesday 20 July 3.30pm
    Y6 Big Fun trip                        Thursday 21 July (in school time)
    Y6 Barbeque                           Thursday 21 July 4-6pm
    Y6 Leavers Assembly            Friday 22 July 9.00
    End of term picnic                  Friday 22 July 12.00-1.30
    School closes                         Friday 22 July 2.00
    Read More
  • WEEK 34 - Friday 17 June 2022

    Published 17/06/22

    As we head full throttle into the summer term, it is worth noting the events that will be happening in the upcoming weeks. Next week the weather is looking great so hopefully Sports Days will go without a hitch - please remember to provide sun cream, sun hat and water. We also have the Summer Fair and the end of term picnic to look forward to and we cannot wait as it feels like it has been a long time since these events last took place.

    Thank you to those of you who attended transition events for EYFS /Y1 as it is always helpful to get any questions answered early. Transition for the rest of the school will take place on 11, 12 and 13 of July and the children will be informed of their new class teacher on the Friday before these dates. We recognise that transition is often a nervous time for the children, particularly those heading up to secondary school and we ensure we include lots of ‘getting to know you’ activities to settle the children with new classmates and teachers.

    Please remember that every year we do change classes slightly as they may move from 2-3 classes in a year group or vice versa depending on the needs within the year groups. We do our best to ensure that children have at least one of their circle of friends in a class with them.

    This term, as has been alluded to before in previous blogs, is extremely busy with assessments and we have had local authority moderations as well in which the school has performed extremely well. I am very proud of the writing our children produced for these moderations and I would like to say thank you to staff who have worked tirelessly to ensure writing at Penshurst is the very best it can be following the long school absences over the past two years.

    As we move into the final five weeks, Mrs Preston will begin to take the reins a little more in school and so it may be that you see a little less of me and a lot more of Mrs Preston to ensure a smooth transition for you all. I could not be more happy to hand the school over to such a safe pair of hands and I will be working with Mrs Preston closely over the final weeks to ensure the changeover is as smooth as possible.

    I hope the weather does not turn for the worse this weekend but at least next week is looking fabulous-enjoy your weekend.

    Mrs J Spencer

    Head of School

    Key Dates:  
    KS1 Sports Day                                                            Tuesday 21 June 1.15   
    KS2 Sports Day                                                            Tuesday 21 June 9.30
    FS1 Sports Day                                                             Tuesday 21 June 3.30
    FS2 Sports Day                                                             Wednesday 22 June 9.30    
    Summer Fair                                                                  Wednesday 20 July 3.30
    End of term picnic                                                        Friday 22 July 12.00-1.30
    School closes                                                                Friday 22 July 2.00 
    Read More
  • WEEK 33 - Friday 10 June 2022

    Published 10/06/22

    This term is always a busy one with sports days, trips, Jubilee celebrations, reports, transition events etc. so please keep an eye on the dates below. If there are any last minute changes due to weather conditions, we will of course send out texts. In my experience it is usually the wettest week in the year when we hold Sports Days!

    In the event of poor weather we try to utilise classrooms and halls where we can. The picnic finishes at 1.30pm and school officially closes at 2pm - you are of course free to take your child home with you after the picnic should you choose to do so and staff will sign you out.

    For those of you who have not attended a Summer picnic before, we ask families to bring picnics onto the KS2 field and the children are sat in classes waiting to be picked up by yourselves to have your family picnic. If any child does not have a parent attending, they stay with the class staff to enjoy the picnic together.

    It is incredible to think about what staff and pupils managed to squeeze into the last five week half term! The main priority was ensuring Year 6 SATs were completed and that all pupils were happy and comfortable with the experience. We have always strived to ensure that the week is as fun as possible with arts and sporting activities galore surrounding the  exams culminating in a ‘chillout’ day on the Friday.

    We were fortunate to have visitors from the Governing Board, other schools and the Trust to help invigilate some of the tests checking that the process was rigorous and all procedures were followed to the letter. There was a lot of talk about the reading test nationally and how difficult the exam was. As a staff body, we felt it was a fair test and the pupils appeared to be answering the questions well so hopefully we will see the high  results we have predicted. The Maths papers were tough but again pupils seemed fairly confident that they had done as well as they could and we did not have any tears this year.

    We have also completed Year 2 SATs in this half term which we keep as low key as we can - these will be optional from 2023. Although we still have a moderation process to complete, early results place us in line with national 2019 results which would be an amazing effort from this year group in what has been another turbulent year of COVID absence for both pupils and staff.

    We now just have the multiplication and Y1 phonics tests to conduct in the final half term alongside our normal internal assessment schedule Transition will take place on the penultimate week of term on the Mon/Tues/Wed. At this point the Year 6 pupils will go to Hessle High and the rest of the pupils will ‘move up’ to their new class and teacher for three days. There will be more news to follow on this in a couple of weeks.

    Have a lovely weekend.

    Mrs J Spencer

    Head of School

    Key Dates:
    Father’s Day Shop                           Tuesday 14 June
    FS2 new starters meetings               Wednesday 15 June
    Transition to Year 1 meeting             Thursday 16 June 3.30
    KS1 Sports Day                                    Tuesday 21 June 1.15 
    KS2 Sports Day                                    Tuesday 21 June 9.30
    FS1 Sports Day                                    Tuesday 21 June 3.30
    FS2 Sports Day                                    Wednesday 22 June 9.30   
    Summer Fair                                    Wednesday 20 July 3.30
    End of term picnic                               Friday 22 July 12.00-1.30
    School closes                                       Friday 22 July 2.00  
    Read More
  • WEEK 32 - Friday 27 May 2022

    Published 27/05/22

    You will be able to see from the Key Dates below that the list of activities and events in school is becoming longer by the week. Summer term 2 is always incredibly busy and I am hoping that the weather becomes a little kinder to us as we have a number of outdoor events planned for the children. On the Jubilee day, we invite the children to wear red, white and blue and we will be holding activities and picnics on the field in the afternoon for all pupils in school. This day is also FS1 hook day so these children can either attend in jubilee fashion or their hook day costumes. 

    In the second week after our return from half term, we will be holding a personal development and wellness week for the whole school. There will be a range of activities such as yoga, sport, forest, mindfulness, art, baking and many more activities. We are seeking to enhance our provision for wellbeing across all year groups and give them enrichment activities that they are not always able to readily access. 

    Just a few housekeeping reminders:

    Please ensure children bring coats to school as the weather remains changeable 

    • Reading records should be filed in three times a week and returned to class teachers 
    • Do not bring dogs on site when collecting or dropping off children. We have a strict no dogs on site policy

    A big thank you to Men in Sheds who have begun to bring in some of the amazing wooden equipment they are making for our FS2 outdoor provision. We will post some pictures on our Twitter site. On the topic of Twitter….please follow us to see the amazing activities that are taking place daily at @Penshurstschool.

    Have a lovely half term and I look forward to seeing you all soon for all of the Summer events and activities.

    Have a lovely weekend.

    Mrs J Spencer

    Head of School

    Key Dates:  
    School closes for half term     Friday 27 May
    School re opens                       Monday 6 June 
    Jubilee Celebration                  Friday 10 June
    Father’s Day Shop                    Tuesday 14 June
    FS2 new starters meetings      Wednesday 15 June
    Transition to Year 1 meeting    Thursday 16 June 3.30pm
    KS1 Sports Day                         Tuesday 21 June 1.15pm
    KS2 Sports Day                         Tuesday 21 June 9.30am
    FS1 Sports Day                          Tuesday 21 June 3.30pm
    FS2 Sports Day                          Wednesday 22 June 9.30am    
    Summer Fair                              Wednesday 20 July 3.30pm
    End of term picnic                     Friday 22 July 12.00noon
    Read More
  • WEEK 31 - Friday 20 May 2022

    Published 20/05/22

    A big thank you to everyone involved in ensuring the Year 6 residential trip was a roaring success. It is easy to forget how significant this is for some of our youngsters who have never stayed away without their family - the sense of achievement on completion of the three days is huge. From all accounts, the camp was great, activities exciting (especially those in water) and leaders of said activities were experienced and fun. They returned to school happy but weary and Thursday in class was definitely a test of the pupils and staff’s resilience. I am always so grateful to Penshurst staff who take time away from their own families to ensure our pupils get to enjoy such an experience.

    On Monday, weather permitting, we will be putting the children’s books outside classrooms (KS1) and on the playground (KS2) for you all to have a look at if you wish. Teachers will be available to chat with if you have any questions. This was a missed opportunity due to Parents Evenings being online the last few years so hopefully you will enjoy seeing how well your child is progressing in their work.

    We have had a couple of safeguarding concerns brought to our attention again this week regarding a craze called ‘The Backrooms.’ The Backrooms is an urban legend that tells the tale of an endless maze of randomly generated office rooms. It is characterised by the smell of wet carpet, walls with a monochromatic tone of yellow, and buzzing fluorescent lights. These Backrooms have been made into mini horror films on youtube and they appear to have been derived on forum 4chan. Please be extra vigilant if you hear this term being used by the children as it is not an appropriate site for primary aged pupils.

    Have a lovely weekend.

    Mrs J Spencer

    Head of School

     

    Dates to remember:   

    Parent Pop in                                                              Monday 23 May

    Jubilee Celebration                                                    Friday 10 June

    FS2 new starters meetings                                        Wednesday 15 June

    Transition to Year 1 meeting                                     Thursday 16 June

     

     

    Read More
  • WEEK 30 - Friday 13 May 2022

    Published 13/05/22

    Firstly, a big thank you to everyone who emailed us wishing the Year 6 pupils and team well in the SATs week. We have had a number of visitors checking that we are administering the exams as they should be and all ran very smoothly-a particular thanks to Governors who attended to check procedures.The Year 6 pupils really were incredibly well disciplined. It gives us pleasure to see even those who really struggle give it their best shot. This leads us nicely into next week where the residential takes place allowing them to blow off some steam and face challenges in a different way - I'm sure they will really show off their competitive natures.

    We now have Year 2 SATs to administer, which again we will keep very low key for the pupils and after half term we have the Year 1 phonics and the Year 4 multiplication checks followed by the EYFS GLD data entry to the local authority. It has been a couple of years without all of the testing and I know there have been questions surrounding the reason for testing and whether we are any better off for doing these exams. What I would say is that pupils will have a lifetime of exams to prepare for and so it really does get them used to life beyond primary; it also allows pupils to show off what they know and get the recognition for this hard work. 

    We try really hard to keep the exam stress to a minimum and the children are completely used to sitting formal tests on a half term/termly basis anyway.

    Do I think children would learn without testing? Yes.

    Do I think testing does children any harm? No.  

    Having administered tests for many years, the positives are definitely that sense of achievement a child feels on completion of the tests.In all areas of life there are tests and challenges we have to overcome and it is just important to keep perspective and remember that testing is not the be all and end all. There are two nuggets of wisdom from this years Y6 pupils talking about SATs preparation  that I love;

    • Don't get stressed, just do your best. Remember you've been blessed with skills SATs can’t test.
    • Be happy, like a unicorn eating doughnuts on a rainbow!

    Very wise! 

    Have a lovely weekend 

    Mrs J Spencer

    Head of School

    Y6 Residential                                                             wb Monday 16 May 

    FS1 Stay and Play                                                      Tuesday 17 May

                                                                                         Wednesday 18 May

    Springtime Burger Day Meal                                     Thursday 19 May

    Parent Pop in                                                              Monday 23 May

    Jubilee Celebration                                                    Friday 10 June

    FS2 new starters meetings                                        Wednesday 15 June

    Transition to Year 1 meeting                                     Thursday 16 June

     

    Read More
  • WEEK 29 - Friday 6 May 2022

    Published 06/05/22

    As I write this blog, the sun has appeared, Y1 are playing on the field, EYFS are conducting a bug hunt, there is a poetry lesson in Evie’s garden and there is a football tournament about to commence. School is so much more than Reading, Writing and Maths and we work just as hard at planning enrichment activities as we do at planning core learning.

    We also ensure our morning circles and assemblies focus on enrichment and personal development with children learning about British Values, religions, cultures and world views. We hope this better prepares pupils for the world we live in and allow them to become rounded citizens. It is also about celebrating differences and the unique characters of all pupils.

    This morning the whole school has been learning about Eid and it was fantastic to hear the questions being asked in classes and the respect being shown towards different religions and beliefs. We live in a multicultural country and it is imperative that pupils recognise and celebrate this. We have a number of different religions in our school and it has been really nice to see pupils informing others of their beliefs and how they live their lives.

    Next week Year 6 sit their SAT’s which have not taken place for two years due to the pandemic; they are all understandably nervous however we really try to make the week as stress free as possible surrounding the  tests with fun activities which culminates in a dress down day for the year group on the Friday. For those of you who have yet to experience SAT’s with your child, there really is no need to panic! It is a set of five tests which the children have sat mock tests for ever since Year 5. It is no different to the end of term tests that we do as standard in school.

    What they do help with is ensuring pupils are placed appropriately at high school however they will also have cognitive tests during transition week at Hessle and in addition teacher assessments and judgements are put forward. This raft of other evidence ensures that if a pupil has an ‘off day’ during SAT’s it is not by any means the end of the world!

    We have already started work on transition to Year 7 with parent information evenings for the parents of pupils with SEN, visits from Mrs Pinkney, Transition Coordinator at Hessle High) and the secondary ready curriculum in full swing. Year 5 also start high school preparation by taking part in a series of secondary online lessons.

    We are looking at staffing for all year groups next year and will begin to advertise our new starters meetings for EYFS children and our ’transition to Year 1 ‘meeting. Official transition for all year groups will take place in the last week of term when all pupils will ‘move up’ a year group and meet their new teacher for three days before spending the last two days of term back in their current year group. ‘Meet the teacher’ sessions will take place on these mornings before school to allow you to ask any questions or pass any information to new teachers.

    We are also planning Sports days, Jubilee celebrations, whole school football tournaments, school trips and visits and the Summer Fair - a busy busy term ahead!

    I hope the sunshine now remains with us-have a lovely weekend 

    Have a lovely weekend.

    Mrs J Spencer

    Head of School

     

    Dates to remember:  

     SAT’s Y6                                              w/c Monday 9 May

    Y6 Residential                                     w/c Monday 16 May 

    Springtime Burger Day                       Thursday 19 May lunchtime

    Parent Pop in                                      Monday 23 May

    Jubilee Celebration                            Friday 10 June

    FS2 new starters meetings               Wednesday 15 June

    Transition to Year 1 meetings          Thursday 16 June

     

    Read More
  • WEEK 28 - Friday 29 April 2022

    Published 29/04/22

    Well who doesn't love a fire alarm early in the morning as we are all arriving at school? Thank you for your cooperation in keeping your children with you if they had not already been dropped off in classrooms this morning. If this were to happen again, please make your way to the field away from the building where we will stay until the site is deemed safe. The children in the building were brilliant as always and very calmly followed their teacher out onto the field with very little fuss.

    This week has been very busy with trips and visits. The Young Voices choir made their way to Sheffield arena to be a popstar for the night, KS2 pupils attended a ‘glow in the dark’ PE event and a selection of pupils took part in the local swimming gala. Music and sport are really important to Penshurst and it is such a pleasure to have these events back in the calendar. I look forward to Sports Days, Summer Fair and the Summer picnic in the last half term of the Summer.

    On Friday 10 June, we will be celebrating the Queen's Jubilee in school; the morning will consist of a myriad of different activities learning about the Queen and monarchy in the wider sense and the afternoon will be a picnic on the field for the whole school with traditional games, music and sports. We invite the pupils on this day to wear red, white and blue and to bring snacks /plated food for the afternoon picnic. We will send further details nearer the time and the normal text reminders.

    Year 6 are coming ever closer to their SATs exams for which they are busy revising for. To help boost the brain cells, we will be holding a SAT’s breakfast every morning from 8am in the main hall. We will provide a free breakfast for every Year 6 child who wishes to attend and this is a really lovely, informal way to start the day in preparation for tests. Previous years have included dodgeball competitions, guess the food activities and the ever popular dance off!

    A reminder that on Monday  23 May we will be holding a parent ‘pop in’  session for Y1-6 where you will have the opportunity to look at your child's work which remote parents evenings have not allowed. If the weather permits, Y3-6 will hold this on the KS2 playground and Y1-Y2 will be held outside their classrooms. This will take place from 3.15 - 4.15pm.

    One last plea, if you need your children to be picked up by someone other than yourself, can you please let the office know as soon as possible on the day. We are receiving a number of such requests right at the end of the school day which makes it incredibly difficult for the office to get messages to all staff who are already on their way out of the door with the class. We cannot let children leave with adults who are not on the list, even if we know the other adult, so please remember to inform us of play dates, parties and events where you may have said another parent can take your child home. 

    Have a lovely weekend.

    Mrs J Spencer

    Head of School

    Dates for the diary:

    Bank holiday - school closed                          Monday 2 May

    SAT’s Y6                                                             w/c Monday 9 May

    Springtime Burger Day Meal                           Thursday 19 May

    Parent Pop in                                                     Monday 23 May

    Celebratory Street Party Meal                         Friday 27 May 

    Jubilee Celebration                                           Friday 10 June

     

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  • WEEK 27 - Friday 8 April 2022

    Published 08/04/22

    A week of wellness and fun at Penshurst….

    It has been the busiest week of the year so far at school as events return in full force. We have welcomed a football coach to Year 6 for the Summer term every Monday to work on skills and sportsmanship and now we are able to get on the field we will begin to look at our summer term sports programme of house tournaments. We also have the ‘Dickinsons’ cup to look forward to, which is a KS2 tournament. I would like to take this opportunity to thank the Carrisons whose business has sponsored a new kit for the girls football team which they are very excited to wear. Just a reminder that we often have to cancel Mr Hutchinson's after school sports club when there is a match on as he needs to supervise the event. 

    Our healthy school agenda has continued with children participating in Bikeability workshops. The council led project has been running for many years and the children have benefitted massively from taking part and becoming safer cyclists on the road. The leaders who came to school to deliver the sessions were extremely complimentary about the pupil’s attitude and manners which is always lovely to hear as well. We also hosted the first ‘Bikers breakfast’ which I am sure will be an annual event now.

    We have teamed up with the charity' Men in Sheds’ to work on some woodwork projects to enhance the outside areas in school. Children will be involved in designing these areas and working together to improve our environment. We have been lucky to get some materials and support from Ashcourt as well to help with the project.

    The return of P Factor was a pleasure to watch. I am always in awe of youngsters who take to the stage and show such bravery in performing before their peers and adults. It is a daunting feeling when the lights dim, the music begins and all eyes are on you and every child handled this exceptionally well showing great maturity and again a sense of teamwork as they all chanted for each other and helped those who found it difficult.

    The School Council have been busy creating fun competitions for you all to take part in over the Easter holidays and we look forward to seeing your creations. Have fun!

    On Monday 23 May we will be holding a parent ‘pop in’ session for Y1-6 where you will have the opportunity to look at your child's work which remote parents evenings have not allowed. If the weather permits, Y3-6 will hold this on the KS2 playground and Y1-Y2 will be held outside their classrooms. This will take place from 3.15-4.15.

    Finally, I thank you all for your well wishes this week and it is with mixed emotions that I take a step away from Penshurst in September. What I can assure you is that it is business as normal for the rest of the year and full steam ahead for the summer term.

    Have a lovely weekend.

    Mrs J Spencer

    Head of School

    Dates to remember:  

    Young Voices, Sheffield                                            Thursday 28 April

    Bank holiday -school closure                                   Monday 2 May

    Parent Pop in                                                              Monday 23 May

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  • WEEK 26 - Friday 1 April 2022

    Published 01/04/22

    Thank you so much for filling out the questionnaire we sent out this week in your droves. Again, I am thrilled that so many of you are so happy with Penshurst and your child's experience at our school.

    The key headlines so far:

    • 98% my child is happy
    • 99% my child feels safe
    • 97% bullying is rare and school deal effectively with any cases
    • 99% the school makes sure its pupils are well behaved
    • 97% would recommend the school to others 
    • 98% my child does well 
    • 98% the school supports my child's personal development

    These figures match those of the children themselves and it is so pleasing to know that the vast majority of our community love this school as much as myself and the staff do. Senior leaders and members of the welfare team will contact parents where there has been any ‘disagree’ or ‘strongly disagree’ statements over the coming weeks to understand this further. I did add a sneaky extra question this time to gauge how parents would like information evenings in the future as we can now open our doors again following two years of strict sanctions. An overwhelming 70% of parents would like a return to face to face meetings and so it remains a challenge for us to see if we can maybe do a hybrid of both remote and ‘in person’ meetings in the next round to suit all.

    It is shaping up to be a very busy last week with the last few assessments, P Factor performances, football matches and class photos. We also have videographers in on Thursday to take some footage of daily life in the Early Year Foundation Stage which the children absolutely love taking part in - it is like being a tv star for the day! We will of course only video pupils with external publicity permission. The video will be on our website for prospective parents to watch and gain a better understanding of what the EYFS daily timetable looks like. The children adore filming, it is the adults that struggle more!

    More football matches next week with Year 6 boys on Monday and Year 5 /6 girls on Thursday. Both matches are at Penshurst. We have unfortunately had some unsportsmanship behaviour from some team members and, as in the real world of football, this has resulted in some match bans for some. We expect the highest standards from our pupils when they are in public representing our school and for the first time ever we have fallen short of expectations on two occasions. We will monitor this closely and continue to educate our young sports people on the importance of professional conduct;  however, I would ask that if you are a parent on the sidelines, you also support us by ensuring a sportsmanlike attitude as well. Please be careful of your language while on any of the school site and remember it is supposed to be fun - I keep reminding the year 6 boys of this as at times I am sure they think they have lost the World Cup.

    I hope you all have a lovely weekend and enjoy whatever weather is thrown our way next!

    Have a lovely weekend.

    Mrs J Spencer

    Head of School

    Key Dates:  
    P Factor          Tuesday 5 April 3.30/6.00 Wednesday 6 April 9.15 
    Class Photos/EYFS School Video     Thursday 7 April 
    Young Voices, Sheffield         Thursday 28 April

     

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  • WEEK 25 - Friday 25 March 2022

    Published 25/03/22

    Communication between school and home is always an area we are looking to improve on especially as we all live such busy lives and tend to live in a digital world now instead of one where letters are sent out. Texts, emails, Twitter and the Headteachers blog are currently our main forms of communication within our school community and we would like this to remain the case to promote consistency of where to go to find out information about what is happening in school. We are also in the process of updating the website to showcase all that we do in school and our intention for teaching and learning in school.

    We are really ramping up our use of our Twitter site in school to showcase events in school and celebrate day to day life at Penshurst. Please take the time to follow us - by App or PC - in order to see all the brilliant learning taking place; It’s also a great place to check dates and event details as we put our regular reminders. @Penshurstschool

    Another week, another football match. Well done to the Year 6 boys who played a cracking match against Anlaby Primary School on Tuesday night resulting in a 1:1 draw. The boys narrowly missed out on several more goals and really did show what a good team they are. We have many more matches coming up including our Girls football team so I will keep you updated with their achievements.

    As we resume normal service at school, following what has been an incredibly different couple of years in education, it is time to take stock and evaluate where we are as a school. We recently conducted a pupil survey with all children and their response was overwhelmingly positive:

    • 99% feel safe in school
    • 98% feel they have someone to talk to 
    • 97% enjoy school
    • 95%  believe they are challenged in their learning.
    • 97% believe that any bullying or unkindness is rare and is dealt with quickly by staff

    This is really positive and we are busy chasing up any worries individuals have around feeling safe or enjoying school. While I am thrilled that the pupils feel so positively about school, I would also like to take the opportunity to gauge parent views so we can address any issues that you may have. The questionnaire can be found here. We aim to do this questionnaire twice a year. If you disagree with any statements could you please offer a little more information to explain why you have ticked this box so we can address any concerns. 

    I think we have all struggled with not having visitors to school and having to do everything remotely (although many of you have commented that you prefer remote parent evenings as it fits in with your busy lives). I have added an extra question to the standard questionnaire asking your view on parents evening so we can make decisions on how we run these events in the future. In May, we are going to host a short event after school where we will bring tables out to the playground in KS2 and outside KS1/EYFS classrooms and lay out the childrens books for you to have a look at. All staff will be present to look through books with you and answer any questions - this may fill the gap that the remote meetings don’t fill and give you an even better insight into the progress your child is making. Thank you to all those who attended the Parents Evening. We will chase up those of you who did not make appointments to ensure there are no concerns or issues moving forwards.

    I continue to advocate reading every night with your child to ensure they accelerate the learning that happens in school. It is lovely to see that the majority of children are bringing in their reading records to celebrate home reading. In Year 4, please work with your children on their times tables as they will sit the national multiplication test in June. They need to know all of their times tables up to 12 x 12 and be able to recall them at speed (within six seconds). Please encourage your child to work on TTRockstars as often as they can and challenge themselves to get better and better.

    On a final e safety note, we have had some concerns reported to us around a TiK Tok character called Huggy Wuggy that our very youngest children seem to know about. Huggy Wuggy sounds like a cuddly teddy bear. But the monster is actually an evil villain in the 2021 horror PC game Poppy Playtime by MOB Games. The blue stuffed bear is no Care Bear. When he opens his mouth, he has rows of sharp teeth. And that's just the tip of the iceberg. He hunts people down and says things like, "I could hug you forever until you breathe your last breath." The problem is that this character can pass through fire walls as it appears to be a child-friendly character. Please as always be careful around the sites your child is accessing and the content they are exposed to. 

    The weather has certainly made a real difference at school playtimes this week and we may have the grand re-opening of the field next week. Enjoy what looks to be a sunny weekend. 

    Have a lovely weekend.

    Mrs J Spencer

    Head of School

    Dates to remember:  

    P Factor                                    Tuesday 5 April 3.30/5.30

                                                      Wednesday 6 April 9.15

    Young Voices, Sheffield         Thursday 28 April

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  • WEEK 24 - Friday 18 March 2022

    Published 18/03/22

    6:1 to Penshurst… the score following the Year 5 and 6 match against Christopher Pickering. It appears that our boys football teams are going from strength to strength so a big thank you to Mr Hutchinson for organising training, dates of matches and escorting them everywhere.

    It has been a pleasure to watch nearly every class in their learning this week and I have really been struck with the resilience that pupils are demonstrating. Not only are they settling back into full time learning but they are simultaneously filling any gaps brought about by the disruption to education over the past two years while tackling new and tricky concepts. There is a real buzz in the classrooms as children celebrate getting answers correct. I have seen fantastic Maths lessons where children have grappled with converting fractions into decimals and exchanging in column subtraction; inspiring Reading lessons with songs, poems, stories and biographies all being explored and enjoyed through to fascinating Science lessons where children can confidently place scientists on a timeline and evaluate how impactful their inventions were.

    We have been concentrating really hard in our thematic afternoons in ensuring that children can link previous knowledge to new learning and I have seen some really good examples of this happening around the building for example with Year 5 able to compare Newton to other scientists and compare scientific theories. The knowledge organisers that we use in class are on the website so maybe challenge the children to tell you some facts from their previous themes to see what they have remembered.It is so important that children learn to link ideas and build their knowledge base. Year 2 are getting really good at comparing authors and discussing similarities and differences in their writing.

    Community has been the topic of staff meetings in school recently as it is only these last two weeks where we have been able to mix again in school as a staff body and we have really missed face to face staff meetings and being able to collaborate with each other on a daily basis. This has obviously also been a barrier to our pupils mixing and to us being able to invite parents into school for challenge days, stay and play sessions, plays, assemblies and so forth. We are, I'm afraid, seeing an increase in Covid cases again which was to be expected with the relaxation of rules across the country. This means that we will continue to limit visitors into school until at least Easter and work with Public Health to do what we can to minimise the risks of transmission. Hopefully, we will then be in a position to put back on all of our lovely events that we invite you into school for. We are dipping our toes in the water slightly to put on P Factor but will again limit numbers in the hall, implement a one way system and encourage hand sanitisation on entrance to school.

    The sun has just appeared as I finish writing so I am hopeful for a sunny, bright weekend - enjoy.

    Have a lovely weekend.

    Mrs J Spencer

    Head of School

    Dates to remember:  

    Parents Evening                                                         Monday 21 Wednesday 23 March

    P Factor                                                                      Tuesday 5 April 3.30/5.30

    P Factor                                                                       Wednesday 6 April 9.15

    Young Voices, Sheffield                                             Thursday 28 Ap

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