My week started in its usual fashion with Monday morning assembly. I meet with the children and introduce the weekly theme whilst the rest of the staff hold a briefing and liaise with each other about the coming week. We had great fun in assembly singing ‘Peace like a river’, a song with some great actions! The song linked to our theme which was about how people from different faiths use prayers for peace. It is really important that children understand the differences between people at the same time as seeing their similarities. Our assembly themes help us to do this.
At our staff meeting this week we discussed how we need to be aware of the impact of the many changes we are facing in education at the moment. We talked about how we need to protect the time we spend with our children in lessons giving them feedback on their learning. Even our youngest children can understand about the things they need to do to progress and how working hard can help them to improve. Next week we will be holding progress meetings with parents and carers. At this meeting you can find out about how your child has settled into their new class and have the chance to look through their books and have a short meeting with their teacher.
In the last couple of years we have encouraged the children to attend the meeting. This is very much up to parents and carers. Some children really enjoy being part of this conversation, particularly our older pupils. Some parents prefer to have a frank discussion with their class teacher without the children present. Whether or not to bring your child is a parental decision though we would urge our Y6 parents and carers to include their child in the meeting.
On Thursday, Mrs Canning and I attended a training course about special educational needs. During the session we talked to others from a range of Bury schools about the new Code of Practice for Special Educational Needs and Disability. We thought about how we need to create an inclusive school which provides quality first teaching for all with additional and different provision for those children who need it. Unsworth has always been an inclusive school with excellent provision for children with additional needs. This has also meant that we reflect very carefully on the teaching we provide for ALL children. Mrs Canning and I will continue to attend a range of training courses and conferences as the year progresses to ensure that we implement the new code effectively at our school.
This message about inclusion was one I emphasised when we invited prospective parents into school on Wednesday morning. The group came to tour the school to see if they would like their child to join us in September 2015. I met with them to outline our approach at Unsworth. I then invited children from our Y6 class to act as tour guides around the school. Everyone involved enjoyed the experience and the prospective parents were very impressed with the way our Y6 spoke about their school.
The highlight of my week was probably when I went into Y3 and spent an hour working with one of Miss McGrath’s maths groups. The children worked hard throughout the session and I enjoyed working with them. They tried very hard to show me their mathematical knowledge and they worked confidently using inverse operations in addition and subtraction. Ten out of ten,Y3!