Holy Trinity Church of England Primary School
Spring is very much in the air at Holy Trinity. The daffodils and crocuses have re-emerged, our school roof is in the process of being recovered and the pavement along Benner Lane is being resurfaced. Most importantly, however, as I write this we are celebrating the return of the whole school after two months of lockdown and being able to reconnect. It is such a joy to have our family back together again and to feel a bit of normality despite the continuing restrictions outside of school.
Of course, the school has continued to be open throughout lockdown for the most vulnerable and children of critical workers, with up to 100 pupils on site daily and safely taught in allocated learning spaces in small bubbles by our talented staff. Our recent parent survey shows that our mixture of voiced-over PowerPoints, videos and live connections alongside signposting commercial material on websites have served our pupils well. We know how hard our families have also worked in balancing work, family, covid pressures and supporting remote learning – and I’m sure everyone now has a greater insight into teaching - although rewarding, it is also very demanding. As we come back together, teachers are now building on the progress the children made during lockdown and we are confident that our adaptable children will catch-up. We are so grateful to Mrs Crowe-Swords from Note Taking Express Limited, Mr Bhatti and the company he works for, for their kind donation of laptops and IPads and Caroline Donaldson-Sinclair for donating over 50 laptops from our local community to help our families during lockdown and which will continue to support our children’s learning in school.
Whilst for most children coming back to school has been an exciting time as they look forward to seeing friends and learning together, we also know for some children and staff it has been an anxious time. We are therefore treading carefully to help everyone feel safe and to be emotionally ready whilst also providing the academic support to help the children catch-up.
Our children have shown to be very resilient and have settled well back into school life. Whilst we are not able to run the school in the same way, our teachers and staff have worked extremely hard in trying to be creative and adapt to new ways of doing things and in some ways, it has given us an opportunity to try new things and certainly make more use of technology.
Some of the highlights during March, in addition to the children returning to school, the whole school took part in World Book Day, albeit at home. Our children dressed up as their favourite book characters and teachers took part in the ‘Masked Reader’, where teachers disguised their face and voices to read a story and the children had to guess who was behind the mask.
On Friday 19th March our pupils and staff came in to school with their crazy hair to raise money for Comic Relief.
In our daily acts of worship, we have been looking at the festival of Lent as we lead up to Easter. We have also been developing Habit 4 of Stephen Covey’s ‘7 Habits of Effective Leaders’ with the children: Think Win–Win. It has been great to explore how to help children find agreed creative solutions when there is initial conflict - where getting our own way is not most important but equally not being walked over and just giving in… a solution that benefits both is Win-Win. It has also been good to focus on our school value of Humility through Habit 4: Win–Win, where we can be pleased in the success of others and not see it as a threat, knowing it is our individual strengths and uniqueness which makes us such an amazing school family.
Since returning the children have been very busy learning about a variety of things:
- Reception children have been studying dinosaurs, discovering fossils and skeletons in the sand.
- During April the children in Year 1 will travel through space to learn about the Solar System – this is particularly exciting with the recent Mars landing!
- The Year 2 topic is ‘Land Ahoy’ where the children will be taking part and dressing up in ‘Pirate day’ extending their learning through pirates with lots of reasons to write and to be creative making puppets in DT.
- Year 3 children are focusing on history this term travelling back in time, using virtual reality to visit the stone-age and they’ll have the opportunity to weave like our ancestors in the iron-age
- Year 4 children are studying the Romans, they will take part in a Roman day where they will learn some Latin, bake bread and take part in ‘marching maths’. Later in the term they will be designing and making a Roman shield as well as studying Roman numerals and ancient artefacts.
- Year 5 children are travelling back to the 1500’s to meet the Tudors and become criminal investigators, finding facts to defend and/or prosecute key figures in Tudor time.
- Year 6 children are developing their scientific and geography skills, researching different climate conditions, habitats, animal adaptions with a particular focus on the frozen kingdom.
I hope you all have a very enjoyable and restful Easter. With the successful roll of vaccinations, infection rates reducing and lockdown restrictions easing slightly we are ever hopeful that we will be able to see our extended family and friends soon. I am sure one thing we will all take from the lockdown experience is to appreciate the little things in life which previously we may have taken for granted like contact, friendships, family, connection and freedom.
Mr Jon Hills