Friday, 1 May 2015

Hello Term 5 :)

We've had a great three weeks since the Easter break!  It always surprises me how much more grown up children seem following the Easter break - sudden growth spurts, confidence to take part in groups, skilled in asking questions ... all the learning they have been doing during the year begins to come together.  We, of course, are looking ahead to September and have just had our lists for new Reception children and know that you will warmly welcome the families of those children who are new to TFCEPA when you get the opportunity.  As we did last year, we will be running sessions for the children and parents so that we can get to know each other so you will have an opportunity to meet the parents and children too.  I know that some of the parents, who have been offered places, have been seeking advice on the local residents Facebook pages and I want to thank all those of you who gave comments saying how happy you are with the community we are building  here together- your comments have filtered back to me and are much appreciated by all the staff.  
In this weeks blog:

  • Dates for your diary
  • The many shades of blue
  • A few reminders
  • Update re new build
  • News from the classrooms
  • News from the School Office

Dates for your diary
The calendar on the web site is now totally up to date, so please check there for dates for your diary too.  Dates you may want to remember are:-

Monday 4th May
School Closed - Bank Holiday
Thursday 7th May
School closed to children as building used for Polling Station
Thursday 14th May
6:30 pm FOTF meeting at school - all welcome
Thursday 21st May
YR children going to library
Friday 22nd May
Last day term 5 - school closes at normal time.

The many shades of blue

Buying school uniform is a tricky business and we have found that there are many more shades of blue than we had imagined!  For summer dresses, we are quite happy with any royal blue or pale blue shades but would be grateful if you could avoid navy blue.
Just for clarification, the Reception uniform for the summer is:-
White polo shirts - logo or not is acceptable
Grey tailored shorts or trousers for girls or boys
Grey skirts or pinafores for girls
School sweatshirts or cardigans with logo
(some of the girls are wearing cardigans that are not TFCEPA school cardigans - we would prefer all children to wear the school cardigan or sweatshirt from Reception upwards but if that is not possible then royal blue if you can, though I understand those are hard to come by locally at the moment)
Closed toed shoes/sandals - open toed sandals are not suitable for running around in or being safe near chair legs etc.
For Nursery, the summer uniform is:
White, plain round necked t-shirts - logo'd polo shorts can be worn if you wish
Black leggings, shorts or joggers for boys and girls
Summer dresses for girls can be worn - see note above re colour
School hoodies - other sweatshirts or cardigans can be worn but they should be plain and royal blue if possible please.
Closed toed shoes/sandals - open toed sandals are not suitable for running around in or being safe near chair legs etc.

Some school uniform suppliers are currently stocking grey skirts and pinafores with Hello Kitty logo'd on the outside.  If your child has one of these currently could I ask that, when they grow out of it, you replace it with a non-logo'd skirt or pinafore - thank you.

A few reminders
Tattoos, jewellery and nail varnish - a number of the children are coming in with temporary tattoos on arms and legs, jewellery and nail varnish on nails.  Please could these things be for weekends and holidays only and be removed before coming to school.
Sunhats and suncream - just a reminder that the children will need these in school, named please, for those days when it's sunny and hot... hopefully they will be back soon.
Lilypad - please remember that Lilypad closes at 6:00 p.m. and that we would appreciate it if you could arrive by 5:55 pm in order to ensure that you and your child leave by 6:00 pm as that is when staff are paid until.  If you are persistently late, we reserve the right to charge a late collection fee of £10 per late pick-up to cover additional staff costs.

Our new building

There has been much excitement in school this week as the teachers, Mrs Wilding and I have all been to the new site and all the staff will be visiting on the 7th May.  It will soon be time to let you know dates for visits but I am holding back from doing that until I have the keys in my hand, just in case of any last minute delays.

This is the front of the school and a view of the amazing front window from inside the hall.

News from Owls and Squirrels

What a busy few weeks we have had in Owls and Squirrels, travelling around the world! We learnt about forms of transport and when we would use them then travelled to Europe by car/ train and plane. We were very lucky to have a visit from Amy’s Mummy who told us lots of interesting facts about Scotland and even sang some Scottish songs. We tasted Scottish biscuits and French croissants, which we sold in our French cafe. We shared our holiday pictures and everyone was brave enough to share them with the class. This week we have been learning about Australia and making packing lists for a visit (although Mrs Leo says it is too far😞). We made some Amazing Aboriginal Art pictures and wrote lots of facts.
In RE we have been talking about Special People and how we are all special in our own way. We conducted a baptism in the classroom where we welcomed our first baby into the Tadpole family and named him Dave Evo Tadpole.
Before the end of term we will be learning about the Polar Regions, Asia and Africa, please come and see us if you have anything to share.

Last week we sent home a sheet for you to share any Magnificent Learning Moments that your child has out of school. We only spend six hours a day with your child and they do not stop learning when they go home! These moments will contribute to their learning journeys and it is great for us to know if they can ride their bike/ swim a width or cook with you.

News from Hedgehogs
The Hedgehogs have really enjoyed the first three weeks of our Outdoor Adventures topic.The children observed how our cress seeds changed everyday over our Gardening week, we hope they enjoyed eating them at home!

The weather last week was perfect for our beach themed week; we talked about our past experiences at the seaside and used our senses to write some amazing seaside poems. We have also been starting to identify different numbers and  counted the correct amount of shells to match the numbers we found.The children enjoyed making ice lollies and eating them in the sun! 

This week we had a camping themed week.  Our role play area turned into a campsite and the children enjoyed playing in our tent. We have been learning the story We're Going on a Bear Hunt, we acted it out outside by going on our own bear hunt. We then retold the story in different ways using props in the storytelling tray and drawing storymaps to show the different events in the story. We have been working together and sharing construction resources to make enclosures and dens outside. The children enjoyed a fun snacktime where we pretended to have a campout around the campfire while we drank hot chocolate and sang some songs.

As part of our Outdoor Adventures topic we will be having a park themed week commencing the 11th May. On Friday 15th May we will be taking the children to play at the park, followed by Family Friday at school where you can come and enjoy a picnic with us and see all the things the children have been learning about. If your child attends a morning session, Family Friday will start from 10:30, if your child attends an afternoon session Family Friday will start from 2:10pm. If your child attends both sessions please choose a session you would like to come to.

News from the School Office

Thank you to everyone that has been bringing in their Sainsbury vouchers into school. The scheme finishes next week. Could we please ask you to check your pockets and bags for any vouchers lurking at the bottom of them. We will start counting how many we have at the end of the week, and hope to buy some great playground and pe equipment that we will be able to use in our new playground.

Hundreds of rubber ducks will be racing down the river in WroughtonWe have taken delivery of some new friends…...several bags of yellow ducks. The office will be selling these as part of the Swindon Duck Race which takes place on Monday 25th May 2015 at 3:30pm, Westcott Recreation Ground. The ducks are £1 each - You receive a raffle ticket with the number matching a duck. 50% of the money raised goes to the MS Therapy Centre, and the remaining is split amongst other local charities including CALM (the Swindon Children’s cancer charity). If you would like to sponsor a duck please bring in £1 per duck in a sealed envelope with your child’s name and class written on it. The raffle ticket will then be sent home to you. Good luck - Top prize of £1000 and 6 prizes of £100.

Nursery parents: Snack money is now due for term 5. If you have not already paid, please drop off to the school office as soon as possible. If you wish to pay for the whole school year and have not done so, the total due is £31. This represents great value for money at just £1 a week for a daily snack.

School absence: Thanks to everyone who informs us when your child is absent from school or nursery. It’s really helpful when we come to report our absence figures. For those of you who are unfamiliar with the process it is as follows: -
On the first day of your child’s absence, please phone the school office on 01793 737325 and leave a message on the answerphone, or email leaving the child’s name, class and reason for absence. Also a reminder that if your child is sick or has diarrhoea please keep them at home for 48 hours to prevent the spread in the classroom. ie if your child is sick on Saturday, they should return on Tuesday, and if they are sick on Sunday, they should not return before Tuesday.   
Parent’s of nursery children and non compulsory school age children should also follow this procedure.

Nursery Places for September 15/16 - Just to keep you informed if you are already following our blog. Applications closed on Friday and we were slightly oversubscribed. We are awaiting distance information from Swindon Borough Council and then we will be able to write to you if we are able to offer a space in September. If you already have a preferred space allocated at another provider, please contact us at to let us know so that we may offer a space to someone on the waiting list.

Reception Places for September 15/ 6 - The closing date for accepting school places was Thursday 30th April. We are awaiting final confirmation from Swindon Borough Council in the post. Once received, we will be sending out welcome letters with all the information you need in the run up to the autumn term.