Friday, 1 February 2013

Issue 19 2012-13

Newsletter Issue 19

Friday 1st February 2013

Dear Parent/Carer,
I am amazed at how many children seem to have visited me this week not for one sticker, but TWO!! The children are excelling in their learning and behaviour in class which means that the team point count up is getting very competitive indeed!

I had the great fortune of visiting the BETT show in London this week with Miss Darroch and Miss Pyatt. We were not only utterly inspired by the amount of technology on offer; we were also able to watch a number of very interesting talks by experts and school leaders in this field. The experience confirmed in many ways, that we are maintaining our very high standards in delivering exceptional ICT learning to our children. However, the three of us all came away buzzing with ideas which we would love to implement at Robin Hood School. We truly believe that in order to deliver a purposeful and relevant 21st Century curriculum to our children, they must be taught how to use the most up to date technologies in a number of meaningful contexts. Watch this Space!

Reading meetings
Thank you to all of the parents who joined us on Wednesday for the Key Stage 1 Reading meetings. We pride ourselves on the very strong partnerships we have with parents and recognise that without the commitment to replicate consistent and fantastic learning expectations at home, the children would not progress as well as they do. These kinds of meetings are a very effective way of keeping parents informed on the ways that we approach teaching and learning and it really is a case of “knowledge is power” when we see how much children improve with good quality parental support.

Friends from Finland
Next week, we welcome 10 visitors from Finland, who will be visiting the school as part of the Comenius “Developing Outstanding Schools” project. They will be focussing on the exceptional use of ICT and I am sure will be blown away by excellence in other areas. I look forward to telling you what they thought of our amazing school next week.
Every visitor who walks through the door of our school comments on the warm welcome that they receive from Mrs Smith and Mrs Holland and note how friendly the teachers and staff are. This often follows with a comment about how beautiful the learning environment is and how happy and confident the children are. This makes me proud and confirms once more that our school is very special indeed.

Valentines Disco
The PTA is holding another great event in the form of a Valentine Disco on Tuesday 12th February. Nursery, Reception and KS1 will have their disco from 16:30 - 17:30 and KS2 from 17:45 - 19:00.
There will be a charge of £1 for entry and this will include a free drink. There will be glowsticks and tattoos available as well as Valentine themed games. Refreshments will be available so please feel free to send your child with some extra change. We hope as many of you as possible will support this and help to raise even more money for the school.

Have a really great weekend!
Mrs Dale
Nursery newsletter
This week we have been learning all about the story of David and Goliath. The children have really enjoyed the story and were very enthusiastic on Monday/Wednesday after they had watched it at home for home learning.
In literacy this week we have been talking and thinking about real life superheroes such as nurses, doctors, firemen and people in the armed forces. The children chose their favourite real life superhero and they discussed what superpowers their superheroes have. The children are trying very hard at writing the first sound in their name and the whole foundation stage team are very proud and impressed at the progress the children have made. So well done nursery children you are amazing! In numeracy we have been counting up to 10 and matching numbers to quantities. We have been impressed at how quickly the children have picked this up and how most children can now count up to 10. In phonics we have been thinking about the first sounds we can hear in words through the use of exciting games such as digging for treasure which involved the children taking part in a treasure hunt in the sand tray trying to find the s and a words.
Next week our classroom will be transformed into outer space, we will have our very own space café and a dark area with a planetarium in. In literacy we will be reading the story Whatever Next. We will be thinking about how we would get into space and what we would take with us. No doubt the children will design some very inventive space buggies. In numeracy we will be sequencing daily events e.g. waking up, eating our breakfast, eating dinner and going to bed etc. In phonics we will be continuing with alliteration and the children will be thinking about the first sounds they can hear in words. Please try and include this wherever possible at home by saying things such as m for mum, d for dad and b for baby.
·        Please listen to your child’s fabulous reading once a day and comment in their reading record. Please feel free to drop in and change their books when you pick them up.
·        Please practice counting to 10 and beyond with your child at any opportunity. Please also practise writing and recognising the numbers 1-6 with them. If your child can do both of these then please help them go even further.
·        Please practise writing the first letter of your child’s name and if they can do this try going even further with them.
We hope you have a lovely and relaxing weekend.
Mrs Steel and the Nursery team
Reception newsletter
This week we have been learning all about the story of David and Goliath. The children have really enjoyed the story and were very enthusiastic on Monday after they had watched it at home for home learning. The children spent their afternoons designing and making their own catapults and discussing how far their pompoms travelled using non-standard measure to see how far they had gone. 20 children managed to achieve their words and sounds of the week certificates last week which was fantastic so a big well done to all those children!
In literacy this week we have been sequencing and acting out the story of David and Goliath. In the second half of the week we talked about real life superheroes such as nurses, doctors, firemen and people in the services. The children chose their favourite real life superhero and wrote about all the powers they have.  We would just like to take this opportunity to say how proud we are of the children’s writing. The progress they are making is phenomenal, they are really sounding out the words they are writing and are beginning to use capital letters and full stops. Our main focus next week is on the use of finger spaces between their words so please really encourage this when they are showing you their lovely writing at home. This week we have reviewed the digraphs, ur, ow and oi and the trigraph (ear). The children had to write the tricky words; he, she, we, me, be and was. In numeracy we have been doing some practical subtraction and we then moved on to writing the number sentences. We have been amazed at how quickly the children have picked this up. We definitely have some super mathematicians in Reception!
Next week our classroom will be transformed into outer space, we will have our very own space café and a dark area with a planetarium. In literacy we will be reading the story Whatever Next. We will be thinking about how we would get into space and what we would take with us. No doubt the children will design some very inventive space rockets. In numeracy we will be sequencing daily events e.g. waking up, eating our breakfast, eating dinner and going to bed etc. In phonics the sounds we will be learning are; air (hair), ure (pure) and er (dinner).  We will be learning to write the tricky words; you, they, all, are, my and her.
·        Please help your child practise their letter formation. This half term we will be really pushing the children’s handwriting and presentation so please also encourage them to write beautiful letters at home.
·        Please support your child in accessing the ‘Bugclub’ website and ‘I am learning’.
·       Please read with your child as often as possible and comment in their reading record to let us know how they are doing at home.
Have a lovely weekend.
Miss Lambert, Miss Pyatt and the Reception Team
Key Stage 1 Newsletter

Home Learning:
Within our literacy sessions we are using the children’s own illustrations to aid and inspire their thoughts around each section of ‘The Fall Out’ before they begin writing. This started with a picture plan of the four paragraphs and has led onto more detailed pictures of the people and situations. For this week’s home learning please support your child in looking with more depth at human features before drawing a portrait of themselves or you. Get them to study the shape of a face, eyes, noses, ears and place them correctly. Question them on what their head sits on, the width of their shoulders compared to their head, the length of their arms, the number and shape of fingers, the curve of their legs, knees and ankles. Really try and encourage them to look and see and then represent these things as accurately as possible. Of course, careful colouring in, in one direction goes without saying!

Reading Meeting:
A big ‘thank you’ to all the parents who were able to attend the reading meeting on Wednesday. It was, again, a great opportunity for us to share and celebrate the successes your children are achieving within their reading and continue our commitment to support you and your child in school and out.

PTA Valentines Fair:
Our amazing and proactive PTA have got another date for the diary to help raise some funds for the school and, more importantly, have a good old knees up! On the 12th of February we will have a Valentines Disco, with the Key Stage One slot running from 16:30-17:30. More details will follow next week!

Sign to Sing:
Next Wednesday, the 6th of February, KS1 will be joining the rest of the school to take part in a nationwide attempt to break the Guinness World Record for the most amount of children singing through sign language at once. Everyone is asked to wear a scarf on the day (preferably stripy like Olli the monkey’s – Sign2Sing’s mascot) and bring £1 to donate to Signhealth – a very worthy charity that transform the lives of extremely vulnerable deaf children and adults. In return all fundraisers will then receive their very own World Record Certificate which contains a SECRET digital key to the locked door of Monkey Manor! Here they can explore Olli the Monkey’s amazing world of fun, educational signing games and competitions. For more details and to learn the songs go to

So, did the news travel fast about the big fall out on Monday?! During our snack time we told the children that we would have to postpone literacy that morning because Miss Hinton had called an emergency assembly to share some fun news with us. We all buzzed with excitement up the mall towards the hall for our 2nd assembly of the day (most peculiar) only to be confronted by the sight of Miss Hinton lounging around the staff room, reading her book (with her feet on the table) and eventually letting out a huge yawn before falling asleep! Not knowing what to do we all went and waited in the hall until it was decided Miss Mees should go and give her a shake (and tell her to buck her ideas up!). And so, the fall out ensued. “I cancelled this assembly!” Miss Hinton insisted angrily. “Well I didn’t get that e-mail!” Miss Mees retorted with frustration. The whole thing came to a messy end, we were left in the lurch with nothing to do other than have a DANCE OFF! Some of us screamed and boogied, some kept watch for Mrs Dale while some proved that butter truly wouldn’t melt and sat sensibly throughout the chaos. However, the fun was cut short when we were busted by Mrs Dale. “Is this what you call learning KS1?” she barked (we all thought she had been taken over by aliens because she’d never looked so angry). She demanded a report from all the children on what had happened, which has been our focus this week and will be next leading up to another star write. The textual features we are focusing on can be seen here: brackets, speech, adverbs and adjectives alongside the use of connectives.

Our topic of shape and space continued this week with an active and fun focus on directions, positions and movements. The children have been up on their feet, down on their tummies underneath their table, moving from the right to the left of the classroom, doing full/half/quarter turns clockwise and anti-clockwise. You name it we’ve got dizzy doing it! A large focus has again been on the comprehension of the language (like in between and near) as well as learning what left and right are and corresponding them to clockwise and anti-clockwise movements. A lot of our learning has been around navigating coordinates and squares with the Beebots, which are such a great tool for teaching these skills (especially for the difficult concept of a quarter turn, as that is the turn that a Beebot makes). Lessons still have shape facts and names integrated into them as well as the mental maths focus on doubling and number problems. Next week we will continue to stream some of this learning in as well as learning how to find fractions of shapes and numbers.

Lower Key Stage 2 Newsletter
We have had another fantastic week in lower key stage two and the children have not only impressed us with their fantastic attitudes towards their learning, but also their amazing manners and the kindness they are showing to one another in the playground. The children have been busy learning our ‘Sign to Sing’ song ahead of our record breaking attempt on Wednesday 6th February.
Home Learning
For the children’s home learning we would like you to encourage your child to read at home as much as possible and record this reading in their reading records. Please can you also encourage your child to access their Bug Club account online if they are part of the scheme and complete the quizzes to check their understanding of the text. Thank you for your continuing support with helping the children to learn their spellings every week. We are really pleased with those who practice hard to get 10/10 as this is having a big impact on their writing. As out literacy unit is story writing this half term we would like the children to show off all of their writing skills by writing us an adventure story.
This week, as part of our narrative unit, we have been writing mystery stories, looking at how to include a balance of speech action and description to move the story on. The children have also been recognising verbs in a sentence and changing the tense of different sentences to past, present and future. Next week we are focusing on sentence structure; extending our super ideas into both compound and complex sentences using a variety of conjunctions.
In numeracy, the children have been choosing the correct strategy either column addition or column subtraction, to solve words problems involving weight. The children have then used both these strategies to solve two step worded problems, carefully reading the problems to determine the correct strategy to use. We have also been converting our answers into both grams and kilograms. Why don’t you ask your child to show you how to convert a weight into milligrams, grams or kilograms?
This week we have been learning all about the discovery of Tutankhamun’s tomb and the Valley of the Kings. We have also been using hieroglyphics to solve problems and have even created our own cartouche (name tags) using hieroglyphics. Next week we will be writing a news report about Howard Carter’s discovery of the tomb, creating our own Pharaoh masks and becoming archaeologists by discovering various artefacts found in the Valley of the Kings.

Spellings to be tested on Monday 11TH February (the children already have their spellings for this Monday)
Group One
Group Two
·    Please can you bring in any old newspapers for us to use during topic next week as we are using it for paper mache.
·    All year 4 boys need to ensure that their swimming shorts are above the knee and girls need to take their earrings out for swimming. If they have been recently pierced their ears must be covered up with a plaster.
·    Next week’s PE session will be outside so can all children bring a warm tracksuit and trainers for PE.
Have a lovely weekend!
Team 3/4
UKS2 News Roundup:

·       This week, our achiever is Aaron in Mrs Brook’s class. Aaron has proved himself to be such a dedicated person when it comes to his learning. He is aware of his own targets and strives to achieve them on a daily basis. Although Aaron doesn’t always find things easy, he tries, tries and tries again. Well done, Aaron – you are a star. Keep it up!

·    We were visited this week by Sandra and Anne with Baz the dog from Hearing Dogs for Deaf People. They came in to tell the children about the charity and explain how the dogs are trained to respond to everyday sounds and alert their owners. The children were fantastic and asked some really interesting and thought provoking questions. Well done everyone.

·    We will be holding our charity Coffee Afternoon on Tuesday 5th February from 2:15pm in the school hall. We will be selling coffees, cupcakes, handmade key rings and decorative signs all to raise money for our chosen charity, Hearing Dogs for Deaf People. If anyone would like to donate any cupcakes to sell on the day, we would really appreciate it. All donations would need to be in school by Tuesday morning. Thank you in advance.

·    We would like to congratulate the children on their mature and dedicated approach to their home learning tasks and we really do appreciate the time and effort that goes into supporting the learning at home. We are delighted to inform you that this continued partnership is having a significant impact on the quality of the children’s writing. It is a perfect opportunity for parents to engage with their child’s learning on a regular basis, allowing you to see the progress for yourselves. Each child is aware of their own targets and we ask that they continue to focus on these when completing their home learning. We very much focus on those targets in school. If you have any questions or comments, please do come and see us. We continue to view the home learning as a joint venture and conversations around maximising your child’s learning are always welcome. In order for this homework system to run smoothly, we will always send out the photocopied writes with the feedback and targets on alternate Mondays. Please can we ask that the writing is then returned by the following Monday at the latest. That way we will be able to acknowledge the fantastic improvements that have been made.


·    This week, the children have been doing some data handling, interpreting various charts and graphs and answering questions related to them.
·    In mental maths we have been focussing on our 9 times table. If you would like any further practise, visit and click on Numeracy. There is a link to Hit the Button which is being used to practise all times tables. There are also lots of free iPad apps to help with times tables – Multiple Wipeout is a particular favourite of ours.
·    Next week, we will be crunching numbers and interpreting data into charts before finding the average, range, median and mode of sets of data. We will also be carrying out our own investigations and interpreting the data into appropriate graphs. In addition to this, we will be looking at probability and chance before applying this to some exciting investigations!


·    In Literacy, the children have been writing their own adverts based on the products on sale next week at the coffee afternoon. They have written a radio advert and have produced a magazine advert, incorporating our sentence level features (questions, commands and statements).
·    Next week, we will be looking at how to write a review. We will be identifying the common features of a review and writing our own product review of an iPad. Our sentence level focus will be on the use of conjunctions to join ideas within paragraphs.
·    SPELLINGS: Our focus continues prefixes - en, ex - encircle, enforce, endanger, engage, encourage, export, exclude, extend, exhibit, express

Other areas of the curriculum:

·    In Topic, we have continued to make our products for sale next week. We also had a visit from volunteers from Hearing Dogs for Deaf People. 
·    In ICT, the children have been using ‘Prezi’ to begin their presentation about a retro superhero!
·    This week in Spanish, we have continued to learn our alphabet and have begun to look at various landmarks from our journey to school. 
·    In Music, 5/6B have been playing rounds using the notes B, A and G.  5/6G have been playing notes on the piano on Garageband in preparation for our own musical compositions which we will be finalising next week! 5/6M have been continuing their learning of percussion instruments and applying this into different samba compositions.
·    In PE pupils have been learning the skill of dribbling in Basketball. They have been working on applying this skill to small sided game scenarios whilst combining the chest pass and bounce pass from previous learning.


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