News

Latest news from around the school

Living and Learning this half term

Posted on 16 February 2018 by Mr Roundtree

Living and Learning sessions are held weekly in class to promote social and emotional aspects of learning and other areas of Personal, Social and Health Education (PSHE). This half term our main theme, from our long-term plan, is Being me and is all around building self-image and self-esteem  
We begin the half term with a focus on manners and in particular covering our mouth when we cough, sneeze or yawn. To promote good hygiene we refer to the vampire technique. By coughing or sneezing into our elbow, germs are not spread into the air or on our hands which may contaminate other things. Don’t forget to ‘use your sleeve to cough and sneeze’.
Here are the weekly Living and Learning statements, to support this learning.
  • I cover my mouth (when I yawn, cough, sneeze).  Get your child to demonstrate the ‘vampire’ method to family members at home.
  • I can say something good about myself.  It’s important that your child can confidently talk about themselves in a positive way.
  • I pay compliments in a sensible way.  Try paying compliments each day to each other!
  • I receive compliments in a sensible way.  Some children struggle to hear positive words about themselves, but this is important for self-esteem. Try paying (and listening) to praise and compliments.
  • I know the difference between being proud and showing off.  We encourage compliments to be paid – but encourage your children to know the balance between being having self-esteem and showing off.
  • I recognise my talents.  Talk to your child about talents, whether academic, physical, social or emotional.

Super Skippers

Posted on 10 February 2018 by Mrs Latham

The whole school enjoyed sessions delivered by Jodi Corcoran from Skipping School this week. The primary aim is fitness through fun and she includes every child in the sessions, regardless of their skills. There is a clear pathway through the skills to ensure all children make progress. After all the sessions, there was a celebration assembly for the whole school. Lots of children demonstrated their achievements.

Please bring skipping ropes into school after half term so the children can continue to improve their skills.

See children demonstrating the skills below for more skipping ideas. Which ones can you do?

Tweaking our timetable

Posted on 08 February 2018 by Mr Roundtree

At Scholes (Elmet) Primary, we’re always looking for ways that we can keep getting better.

One example is timings of the school day. A few terms ago, we trialled a new approach to the school day. This included moving Wake Up, Shake Up to 10am to give our children a ‘brain-break’ after an hour of great learning, and moving assemblies to the afternoon to give us the opportunity to come together and reflect on our day. Both staff and children told us they liked the changes so we adopted the changes at the start of this school year.

Next half-term, we want to investigate whether a slight tweak to our new timetable will be even better. This only applies to children in Key Stage 2 and doesn’t affect the start and end of the school day at all. The change will involve moving lunchtime to a little later – 12.10. This gives our older children an extra ten minutes of valuable learning time in the morning, but more importantly allows lunchtimes to be slightly ‘staggered’ so we can accommodate more easily children having their lunches.

We’ll keep you informed on how the trial has gone.

Feeding back to our governors

Posted on 06 February 2018 by Mr Roundtree

Thank you to all the parents / carers who came to school yesterday for the parent-teacher consultations. It was great to see so many of you there. As well as a chance to meet your child’s teacher, there was a Reading Workshop led by pupils and a chance to speak with governors.

Governors were delighted to have the opportunity to meet with you and hear your views.

One thing that was mentioned as something we could do better was sending text messages to both parents. We completely understand this would make life easier for you. The problem is the cost implications because school pays for each text it sends. At Scholes, instead of sending 300+ texts, it could make it 600+ each time. A better solution is to download the app. This means that we can send both parents (and anybody else, like a grandparent) free messages. (Download the app: If you have a smartphone, please download School Gateway from your Android and iPhone app store. If you’re having trouble logging in, it may be because we don’t have your current email address and mobile phone number on record. Please call the school and we’ll update the details on our system.)

The second key concern was about high schools. Some of you have heard about various options for Wetherby and Boston Spa High Schools. This seems to have stemmed from some communications sent by either Boston Spa and Gorse Multi-Academy Trust, or by the local authority. This letter contains the most recent communication about the issue from the local authority – contact us for any more information if you like.

Here’s a selection of other comments…

  • ‘We have no issues at all with the school. All the children love coming to school and I know they are very safe here.’
  • ‘There is a very friendly and positive atmosphere. The teachers respect the parents (not like at the school they have moved away from). They are very safe at school. [A problem] was dealt with and sorted very quickly. The children here look after each other very well. I’m very happy with the school.’
  • ‘The school is really open and honest. They were really quick to share key information about the changes to my child’s teacher. Miss Hague has been really supportive as my child required some additional help in school. The new head seems to be turning it round.’
  • ‘Mr Gathercole is a fantastic teacher. He puts the fun into teaching and is really nurturing of my child. My child is making good progress. My child is really happy here. Good to see leaders having a presence in the playground.’
  • ‘I’m very happy with the school. The school communicates with parents well and the new website is good – my child asked if he could use it to do phonics at home and I found it very easy to use. Safety at school and behaviour are very good.’
  • ‘The teaching staff respond and offer help when needed. I am very proud of both my children. They have made excellent progress thanks to the school.’
  • ‘[My son’s] really happy at school and loves to come each day. He is safe at school. I’m really proud of the progress he has made in four months. He brings books home and loves reading them. The school communicates well with us.’
  • ‘It’s a lovely village school. All the staff in Reception are great, I have received lots of relevant information to help my child settle. I also use the school website for information, it is really informative.’
  • ‘This is a lovely village school. My children are happy and safe. I really like to see the heads in the playground – it makes you feel you can talk to them. The Ofsted inspection was not a true reflection of what you feel in the school. All staff are really committed.’
  • ‘I have three children who have all been through the school. I just have one in Scholes now. She is making good progress. I was supported when I came into raise a concern – it was resolved really quickly.’

Thanks, everyone, who attended the consultations, whether you spoke with governors or not.

Reading Workshop

Posted on 06 February 2018 by Mr Lindsay

Thank you to all the parents who attended the reading workshop during parents’ evening last night. Don’t worry if you missed it because the workshop will be running again during the parents’ evening on Wednesday 07 February between 5pm and 7pm.

The workshop provides tips and advice on how to support your child’s reading at home. The year 6 children running the workshop demonstrate games and activities to encourage a love of reading. If you have five minutes after visiting your child’s class teacher, then pop in and see what the children have to offer.

Below are some comments from parents who attended the workshop:

  • “This was a useful and informative workshop. Useful for our two younger children.”
  • “Good descriptive information to support at home.”
  • “Really fun and enjoyable. I’d recommend coming.”

3 2 1 DODGEBALL!

Posted on 01 February 2018 by Mrs Latham

A huge well done to our Year 5 Dodgeball team. They entered their first competition organised by PE Partner at John Smeaton Leisure Centre today and they WON! They will now represent Scholes at the Leeds finals in June.

Can you claim your wristband?

Posted on 31 January 2018 by Mrs Latham

We launched the 30:30 Wristband Challenge in the new year. We aimed to complete 30 minutes of physical activity during school time.

The other 30 minutes were to be done at home. If you’ve managed 10 days, you will receive a certificate.

 

If you have managed 80% of this half-term (38 days), you’ll receive a bronze wristband. Please return your completed forms back to school by the end of next week if you would like to receive your prize. If you need another form, please call in to the school office.

The Big Ink Cartridge Collection

Posted on 31 January 2018 by Miss Parling

WANTED!

School council are collecting used ink cartridges to raise money for our school and our chosen charity – The Donkey Sanctuary.

All collected used ink and toner cartridges are recycled in an environmentally friendly way and the money raised is donated back to us! The more cartridges we can collect, the more we can raise.

If anyone’s workplace throws their ink cartridges away, we’ll be happy to recycle them for you!

An ink cartridge recycle box is waiting for your donation in the main office reception.

 

 

Amazingly atmospheric writing

Posted on 31 January 2018 by Mr Roundtree

One of the Year 5 and Year 6 learning objectives is to develop the skills of using other writing as a model for their own writing. This isn’t simply copying another writer; instead, it’s using their work as inspiration, a model, for their own ideas and style (a bit like J K Rowling being inspired, perhaps, by a writer such as Ursula K Le Guin, who also wrote about a wizarding school).

Here, two Year 6 pupils – Reece Morley and Jacob Rayner – have done just that, with great results. The original text was the wonderful The Nowhere Emporium by Ross McKenzie. Their writing is reproduced here (with just a couple of spellings corrected). Enjoy!

The shop was made of midnight black stone, embedded in little specks of silver and gold. The iron gate sat there in front of the grand oak door, guarding the entrance like a soldier. It had wooden beams which reached sky high which loomed ominously over the dusty street. Although the giant beams and the great gate looked quite foreboding, there was something calming and also quite mesmerising about the strange building. Just above a black, tinted, barred window were some letters that spelled out the name: The Midnight Mall.

Inside it seemed almost completely normal. The darkness ate at the light in the corners but that was all. Or at least it seemed like that was all. But if you focused a bit more you’d notice a green aura of light around all of the objects. The walls had cracks in them, the plants whacked each other with their branches even though the air was still. Small and very distant screeches could be heard if you stayed quiet. The place seemed quite intriguing yet kind of scary all at the same time, if you notice all those things. The shop with all this stuff that is quite mysterious can only appear at midnight.

Afterwards, it will be gone.

 

The Master led Vindictus through the abandoned worn-out factory. The derelict building stood lifeless. Its crumbling chimneys and hanging gutters were clogged with moist, rotting leaves and the walls were pitted, as if they had been gnawed by hundreds of starving rats. Vindictus followed the Master through to the decrepit, ancient office. The Master snatched a worn key from a battered safe. They passed conveyor belts that hadn’t been used for a decade or two.

“Argh!” screamed the Master as a nightmare-ish, blood-curdling wail erupted from a larger-than-life bat. Whilst the Master was hyper-ventilating, Vindictus asked, “Is this where you keep him?” pointing to a weather-worn prison cell.

“I’m afraid we had no choice,” sighed the Master. “He was
violent to the other boys but he is well fed.” The prison cell was dark and dreary. Boxes were scattered around the room. They contained unknown items. Although the entrance was damaged from constant usage, it was still firm. The boy inside was dreary, lonesome and unexcitable. However, there was something intriguing about him.

Our Year 6 Reading workshop

Posted on 30 January 2018 by Mr Roundtree

Thanks to the parents and carers of Year 6 children who came to school yesterday evening for a Reading workshop. We’re really pleased to see so many of you taking the time to learn how you can best support your child at home.

Here are two examples of the great feedback we got:

‘The evening was very informative. It helped me understand what the reading SATs paper will be like and where I can help my child… Thank you for taking the time to give us an insight…’

‘I feel more comfortable with what [my child] is being taught and the support he is being given.’

Read the PowerPoint slides here: part one, part two and part three.

Watch a short video about the Key Stage 2 assessments (SATs) here.

One parent suggested the evening should be scheduled towards the end of the school for Year 5 parents, so they are more prepared for Year 6 from the outset. Thanks for the idea – we think it’s a good one and we’re going to organise this.