News

Latest news from around the school

A new edition of #Ditto

Posted on 25 November 2019 by Mr Roundtree

#Ditto is a downloadable e-safety magazine for schools, organisations and parents to keep you up to date with risks, issues, advice and guidance related to keeping children safe online, with a view to enjoying and learning about technology.

There’s a lot of interesting information in the November edition. We especially liked the articles on Deepfakes, Influencers and Notifications and Immediacy.

Read your way to a happy and healthy life

Posted on 24 November 2019 by Mr Roundtree

We can all agree that reading is important, but do you realise just how important reading actually is?

The Reading Agency outlines the powerful impact reading can have for your child, for you and for society.

The benefits of reading for pleasure for your child (and you!):

  • Reading for pleasure is more important for children’s cognitive development – their brain power – than their parents’ level of education.
  • Reading for pleasure is a more powerful factor in life achievement than socio-economic background.
  • 16-year-olds who choose to read books for pleasure outside of school are more likely to secure managerial or professional jobs in later life.
  • Having books in the home is associated with both reading enjoyment and confidence. Of children who report having fewer than 10 books in their homes, 42% say they do not like reading and only 32% say they are ‘very confident’ readers. For children who report having over 200 books at home, only 12% say they do not like reading and 73% consider themselves ‘very confident’ readers.
  • Children who read books often at age 10, and more than once a week at age 16, gain higher results in maths, vocabulary and spelling tests at age 16 than those who read less regularly.
  • Reading extensively and for pleasure at home can increase literacy skills at a greater rate than through formal lessons at school.
  • Incomes are higher in countries where more adults reach the highest levels of literacy proficiency and fewer adults are at the lowest levels of literacy.
  • An online poll reveals that regular readers for pleasure report fewer feelings of stress and depression than non-readers, and stronger feelings of relaxation from reading than from watching television or engaging with technology intensive activities.
  • Studies have shown that those who read for pleasure have higher levels of self-esteem and a greater ability to cope with difficult situations.
  • Reading for pleasure is associated with better sleeping patterns.
  • Adults who read for just 30 minutes a week are 20% more likely to report greater life satisfaction.

We’re often asked how you can support your child more at home. We think one of the best ways to help is to make sure you build into the daily routine some time for reading. For many families, this is a bedtime story every night just before lights out.

Happy reading!

Fortnite - staying safe

Posted on 21 November 2019 by Mr Roundtree

As you know, we like to keep you updated as much as possible with how you can keep your child safe when they’re online. This is an ever-changing world and, unfortunately, it’s impossible to keep up with all current issues but there are some ways we can help. Over this year, we’ll communicate to you some factsheets about popular games and apps with some hints and tips about how you can support your child in staying safe.

The first one is some guidance around the game, Fortnite.

As always, if you’ve any questions, comments or concerns, please chat to someone in school.

Living and learning in our happy and healthy school

Posted on 19 November 2019 by Mr Roundtree

Although it’s not yet in primary schools’ National Curriculum, most primaries provide pupils with learning around aspects of Personal, Social, Health Education (PSHE), and also citizenship (in fact, sometimes, you might see or hear the abbreviation PSHCE) and financial education (I’ve even spotted the abbreviation PSHEE – Personal, Social, Health and Economic Education). Sex and relationships education (SRE, although sometimes the terms are swapped around: Relationships and Sex Education – RSE) also falls under this PSHE umbrella term. As you can see, all these abbreviations can get really confusing!

At St James’ CE Primary, we cover all this in a weekly subject which is popular with both pupils and their teachers: Living and Learning.

Read more about Living and Learning on our Health page and in our age-related expectations. You can also check out the weekly Living and Learning theme in our calendar – they show for each Monday during term-time.

Living and Learning: democracy

Posted on 04 November 2019 by Miss Beatson

On the last day of half term, the school councillors for this year were elected. The children read aloud and listened to speeches in their own class. Then the children went into the hall to vote for their class representatives; this was a very fair and democratic process. Congratulations to all the children who will be school council representatives for 2019-2020.

 

Our Christian value his half-term is...

Posted on 03 November 2019 by Mr Roundtree

perseverance.

Perseverance is needed when standing firm in the face of any difficulty. It’s the special gift that we have when life is difficult or painful that helps us not to give up. Difficulties might include hardship, persecution or scorn, although we hope these difficulties do not arise in our school. We use it more in the context of ‘keeping going’ and ‘not giving up’.

Why did the Church Council choose this Christian value?

‘Because Jesus always said to try our best.’ (Y4 Church Council member)

Home challenge

Talk about perseverance together…

  • How can we show perseverance in school?
  • How can we show perseverance in home, or in other situations?
  • Talk about a time when you showed perseverance.

‘Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up.’

(Galatians 6:9)

Thanks for coming to parents' evening

Posted on 31 October 2019 by Mr Roundtree

Thank you to all the parents and carers who came to the parent-teacher meetings in the last week of the half-term. It was great to see you all there, keen to find out how your child is doing in school and how you can continue to support at home.

Thanks also to the governors who were around, collecting your views. Here are some of the views they noted:

  • Parents who have been linked with the school for a long time are delighted to see a continuing upward trend in everything that is happening. The recent Ofsted report has been a huge bonus.

  • Parents new to the school are very happy with the education their child is receiving.

  • Every parent expressed their appreciation for the work of the relevant class teacher.

  • Children new to the school, whether at Reception or joining higher up, have settled quickly and feel at home.

  • The school works hard to meet the needs of individual children. Sensitive children and those lacking self-confidence are supported extremely well.

  • The church school aspect is appreciated by parents. For some it is very important and a reason for choosing the school. For others they appreciate the children being given the knowledge and skills to be able to make up their own minds in the future about religion.

Governors noticed a higher proportion of dads attending the parent-teacher meetings, and suggested some sort of workshop for dads in particular who want to support their child. We’ll see what we can do about this – and if you’ve any ideas, do let us know!

Thanks again.

Our website

Posted on 23 October 2019 by Mr Roundtree

In the past few months, our website has been experiencing a few problems, the main one being that the whole-school news posts haven’t been published on our Facebook page. We hope this is now sorted.

In the next week or so, there will be more tweaks made behind-the-scenes on our website. This hopefully won’t cause any problems, but do let us know if you notice something.

Sorry for any problems you’ve encountered.

Spread the word!

Posted on 07 October 2019 by Mr Roundtree

You’ll know by know that just before the summer holidays, St James’ CE Primary was inspected by Ofsted and received a judgement of good across the board. The report is very positive about our school. Highlights include:

  • ‘Teachers have high expectations of what pupils can achieve.’
  • ‘There are good relationships between staff and pupils.’
  • ‘Pupils work hard, concentrate well and enjoy learning.’
  • ‘Pupils are well prepared for the transfer to secondary school.’
  • ‘Teachers are skilled in encouraging pupils to cooperate and share ideas to develop learning.’
  • ‘Pupils are well behaved and aware of their responsibilities in society.’
  • ‘Pupils are looked after well and are safe in the school.’

Spread the word about what a good school we are!

Homework review

Posted on 03 October 2019 by Miss Beatson

Thank you to all the parents and grandparents who came to our homework review today. The children were very proud of their creative maths homework. Here are some lovely comments made by our visitors:

“Impressed with the imagination of children……… activity grounded maths in real world and not as a mysterious subject…”

“Great opportunity to see the way homework is reviewed and shared with the class.”

“Great to see children showing their homework. It was good that I could visit two classrooms.”

Look out for the next opportunity to visit classrooms when you can  ‘watch us while we work’ on Tuesday 12th November, 9am-10am.