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The things we’ve done..and the things we will do.

The things we’ve done..and the things we will do.

As the Easter break starts we can reflect on the fact that we are now two thirds of the way through the academic year. Our Reception class are now settled and confident in school and our Y6 pupils are approaching some big changes and challenges ahead. During this last week we held our progress evenings with parents and carers from Y1 to Y6. During the meetings, we asked parents to complete an Ofsted-style questionnaire in order to seek views on a range of issues. We have analysed the results and we are delighted with the overwhelming support we have received. If you would like to read the report then you can find it here.  Questionnaire Results March 2017. During this term, we have worked hard to provide the children with a range of memorable experiences. We have increased the sporting activities for our pupils which culminated in our pupils taking part in the Greater Manchester School Games. We have also enjoyed hearing about their achievements in football, rugby, netball and cross country. Many of our Y5 and Y6 pupils have achieved their level 1 and 2 Bikeability awards after improving their cycling skills on the road. Our Y4 pupils continue with their weekly swimming lessons and will do so until the end of the year, when it is our aim that every one of them will be able to swim. In addition to sport, we have also planned opportunities for the children to develop their skills in other areas of the curriculum. Our choir continues to work with Miss Geelan and we are planning an event involving the Halle later next term; many of our children are enjoying learning to play instruments with Miss Geelan and with tutors from Fiddler Music and Bury Music Service. In February, we enjoyed great feedback from our parents when we held our Great Unsworth Exhibition. During the weeks before the exhibition, we worked to develop the children’s design and technology skills as inventors. They proved to be both skilful and creative. We were pleased, this term, to be awarded the E-Safety Award in recognition of our work with the children. This week we asked Bury Teaching School Alliance colleagues to conduct a safeguarding review in our school. The aim was to test our procedures, our policies and our staff knowledge of the whole safeguarding arena. During the process children were asked about how the school helps them to keep safe. They were clear that they felt safe in school, knew that they had people to speak to and that they understood the issues around bullying and e-safety. During the summer term, we will continue to provide the children with a broad curriculum experience. We will also be planning a number of end of year trips for them to enjoy. During the term there will be a number of class assemblies culminating in a very emotional final assembly from our Y6 class. In the meantime, enjoy your Easter break-we will see you again in a few weeks. It's only fair to...

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Safer Internet 2017

Safer Internet 2017

At the beginning of February we will be focussing on the annual Safer Internet Day with our children. This is a global event and its theme is ‘Be the Change: Unite for a better Internet.’ Hundreds of organisations get involved in the day to help promote the safe, responsible use of digital technology for children and young people. Safer Internet Day, 2017 will explore the power of image-both for positive and negative-in digital youth culture. The Internet can be a powerful tool. Children and young people can share images and videos to communicate and express their creativity. However, there can also be pressures, risks and potential negative consequences. In our work with the children, we want to help them to build the skills and confidence to use images and videos safely and creatively but also ensure that they know how to have a positive time online. The Safer Internet resources will be used across the school to raise some of these issues in an age-appropriate way with all classes. Our e-warriors will be leading the way with this work. In order to prepare for SID 2017, our assembly themes so far this term have been about technology and the Internet. We have discussed the idea of technology with the children and the idea that it is ‘anything that has been created by people’s ideas’ as one child said in our first assembly! The children have also discussed the many ways in which they use digital technology. Many of them are digital experts and sometimes we can be surprised, as teachers and parents, about just how much the children know and the various platforms they are using. It is vital that we help the children to do this safely. If you would like to know more about Safer Internet Day,2017 and look at the parents advice pages, click here   It's only fair to...

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A busy half term

A busy half term

  We have reached the end of the first half term of the school year. What a busy time we have had. On Thursday evening, the governing body met for their Autumn term meeting. We were able to welcome our new parent governor, Mr Cooper, and we were able to discuss the start we have made to the school year and the priorities contained in our School Development Plan. If you would like to know more about our governors and their role then you can follow the link below:   Our School Governors Earlier in the week, we held our Parents’ Progress Meetings. Three of our governors attended the sessions to ask parents their views on the progress of their child and the information on progress provided by the school. Our staff governor, Mrs Channon, also asked our new YR parents their views on our transition processes as children enter our school, during the Welcome Assembly a few weeks ago. It is our intention to issue a report on what parents think and any actions arising from those views. We have also asked two of our senior leaders, Mrs Ali and Ms Sinclair to conduct a parent survey on homework as part of a review of our approach in this area. They will communicate views on this once all the responses have been analysed. Our children have settled well into their new classes and are working hard. We continue to welcome many visitors into our school who attend the raining courses we run. When visiting teachers and school leaders visit our classrooms, they always comment on the engagement and independence of our children as learners and the outstanding behaviour they see. On a number of occasions this half term, I have had ‘learning conversations’ with individual pupils. This involves them showing me their books and talking to me about their learning challenges. I am always so impressed with the pride they show and their understanding of the learning process. This is also reflected in the comments we receive from our visitors. The children have also had the opportunity to enjoy a range of activities beyond the classroom. We have welcomed our partners, QFirst Sports into school to increase the range of sports and PE activities on offer to our children in lessons and as extra-curricular clubs; our own teaching staff have also been involved in leading extra-curricular clubs and activities such as football, netball, tag rugby and table tennis. We also had a great day playing (and exercising!) on scooters. A number of classes have also been out of school on trips and visits including our Y6 adventure holiday to Robinwood. School trips and visits to places in our locality enrich the children’s learning. First hand experiences are memorable and more meaningful to children. We are grateful to the PTA who work hard to raise funds to subsidise the costs of these trips by providing the transport, which can be costly. The parents of three of our classes have been invited to see their class assembly and we have all enjoyed seeing how all children do their best to participate in these. Across this half term, we have worked with the children to think carefully about our new ‘core values’. Last year we held a vote to select five...

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Back to school

Back to school

Welcome back to school, everybody! It is always a pleasure to see the children on the first morning back-proud in their new school uniforms and ready for the challenges of the new school year. Our new Reception Class children have arrived and have settled in beautifully. This year we have introduced a new app called Tapestry which we will use to document the activities and learning of our new class. This will be accessible to parents and carers and there is a facility to comment back. This, together with our Twitter feed and our website, means that our school community has never been as well informed as to what is happening across the school day. Prior to the children starting, our staff attended a couple of training days in order to prepare for the coming year and to re-visit our core values and principles. We reminded ourselves of the meaning of our school motto, Together We Build Understanding, and what this means to our children. We know how important quality teaching and learning is for a young person’s future, but we also discussed the importance of their well-being and happiness. It is interesting that happiness and friendship were two of the values which received most votes in our recent poll. This year we will use the five core values, as selected by our school community, as our assembly themes-happiness, respect, honesty, friendship and learning. It has also been a pleasure to welcome back some of our Y6 leavers this week. Many of them have visited after school to show us their new uniforms, their homework journals and to tell us how they have settled into their new schools. They understand the importance of our values and know they will always be part of our community and are happy to pop in and chat. On Tuesday 20th September, we will be officially welcoming our new pupils into school during our Welcome Assembly. Any child new to the school, including all of our Reception Class, will be welcomed by our Y6 pupils. All parents and carers of pupils new to school are invited to attend. The assembly starts at 9:10am. On behalf of the staff and governors, I would like to thank you for your on-going support. I have always felt that it is a privilege to be part of our community and I hope you will continue to feel the same way too as we move forward this year. It's only fair to...

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Goodbye, Y6

Goodbye, Y6

Every year, at this time, we wonder at how quickly the school year passes. For those of us who work in the school, this is a regular occurrence. For our children it can be both an exciting and a difficult time. Some children look forward to the adventure of a new class whilst others worry about the change. For our Y6 pupils this week is the start of a momentous change in their lives; the step from primary to secondary education. On Monday morning, they will be inviting their family members into school to see their final assembly. They have been working hard with their teacher, Ms Sinclair, in order to plan what they want to express as they leave our school. It is always a very emotional experience for everyone and one where all the adults in their lives, both at home and in school, feel incredible pride when they see who they have become as young people. We hope that as they leave the school this week and as they develop in the next few years into young adults, that they carry with them the values we have promoted in partnership with our families. If you speak with any one of them you notice how able they are to articulate what it means to be part of the Unsworth community. They can talk about ‘Together We Build Understanding’ and what it means to them. They can talk about our core values, recently selected through a democratic vote. They have been successful in terms of their academic achievement this year but their qualities as people and the values they hold and demonstrate every day will stay with them in their future. It is that which gives us the most satisfaction. Someone once said that to achieve excellence you should:   “Risk more than others think is safe. Care more than others think is wise. Dream more than others think is practical. Expect more than others think is possible.”   Taking safe risks, caring deeply, dreaming about possibilities and having high expectations of yourself and others is what we are all about. Our wonderful Y6 pupils are equipped to move on to the next part of their lives and we wish them well. Good luck, Y6, we will miss you! It's only fair to...

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