12 Jul

This week’s blog is going to be a little long as I have linked in last week’s blog.

As we fast approach the end of term, the senior team at Hollinwood are working to ensure that all staffing vacancies are filled and teaching assistants are appointed to post ready to start in September.

This week I have asked lots of teachers in the school to let us know what they have been up to, starting with Miss Collinge. Last week Miss Collinge had a mixed class group of Miss Shin’s class and her class.

Another busy but fun week in Miss Collinge’s class this week. Our Year 6 children are having an amazing time on the residential trip. The rest of the class have joined up with some of the children from Miss Shin’s class to have a fun filled week.

As part of our topic on persuasion, we have looked at alternatives to single use plastics. We even had a go at making our own biodegradable plastic using milk and vinegar. The first time didn’t quite go to plan but the second attempt was perfect. We think some of the big plastic companies should produce their plastic this way!

During our Science topic we looked at life cycles. We were lucky to receive our own caterpillars to care for and to learn first-hand about their life cycle. Each day they almost doubled in size! Once the caterpillars had formed their chrysalis we carefully moved them into their new habitat to wait for the butterflies to emerge. After a week or two we had 3 beautiful butterflies. Take a look at our pictures of the butterflies being released so that they could continue their life cycle.

This week has been all about chocolate. We have listened to Charlie and the Chocolate factory by Roald Dahl, and tasted different types of chocolate with our eyes closed so that we could use our sense of taste to describe it. We have designed our own chocolate bars and packaging and finally we have made them. I’m sure you will agree that they look just as good as Wonka’s scrumdiddlyumptious bar!

Let’s now see what Mrs Potts’ class have been up to this week..

In Science we have been learning about photosynthesis. We did an experiment by using iodine and onion skin. We put the iodine on the skin and were able to look at the onion cells under the microscope.

We did a second investigation which involved heating Cabomba pondweed until it started to bubble then we counted the gas bubbles at different light intensities and counted the oxygen bubbles at different wavelengths of light..

As we are all doing GCSE Spanish next year, we have made a start on the GCSE syllabus. We have started working on longer pieces of writing in Spanish and starting to be more descriptive in our writing. In History, again due to the amount of content in the GCSE syllabus we have made a start on it. We are currently learning about crime and punishment over time.

This term we have made a variety of dishes in Living Skills including shepherds pie, cheesecake and cookies. Some of the class have been very keen to eat their creations before taking them home! We have also been working on making different types of pastry and dough from scratch..

Earlier in the term we focused on badminton in our PE lessons, learning the skills needed to be successful at badminton and we then put what we’d learnt into practice, playing a couple of games. In RE we have been looking at marriage in different religions and found out about the differences and similarities, and how the celebrations vary across the religions.

In Art we have been learning about Lichtenstein Pop Art, the group had to choose one of his famous artworks such as in the car, still life in the fruit bowl and spray can. They will use this as their final piece that brings together the skills they’ve learnt all year. There was a choice of materials for them to use to create their final piece and these will be displayed in school.

Now to Miss McMurray’s form group..

Over the course of the academic year, pupils in KS4NMY have been working with SkillForce, working towards their Prince William Award at Explorer Level. The Prince William Award is designed to help children and young people develop in confidence, resilience and inner strength, to ‘dare to be their best selves’.

Pupils in KS4NMY were some of the lucky pupils who have graduated from the Prince William Award this week and have contributed to the award after having an extremely successful year.

We are very grateful to have Stevie McArthur the SkillForce Instructor and Miss Clancy working with our young people in the class, allowing them to make such outstanding success.

Parents and carers were invited to the graduation ceremony where the following pupils graduated at Explorer Level: Decklan, Nathan, Danny, Sameh, Neive, Diego and Declan..

Another well done to Ethan and Rickson who also received a participant award.

After the graduation, parents (and Miss McMurray) were invited to join in some fun activities to demonstrate some of the skills the pupils have been developing over the course of the year as part of the Prince William Award..

Miss McMurray and Miss Clancy are so proud of the progress and success of the young people.

Mrs Lomax’s class have lots to tell you..

We have had such a busy term! Our class have done so much learning and the teachers are very impressed with the progress and achievements we have made.

Our focus in Maths this term has been using money, fractions, data organisation, shapes and positional language.

We have enjoyed doing shape hunts and searching for coins..

..using toys to show positional language..

..creating a shop within our classroom and going to Tesco to use money..

In Science we have been looking at keeping healthy through diet, exercise and personal hygiene. We have learnt about the correct way to wash our hands, including using a special light box and gel to show where we have missed..

We have practised brushing our teeth and even had our own set of plastic teeth to brush. We have also explored healthy diets and learnt about different kinds of food..

We used our iPads to use an App that scans packaging and then shows how much fat, sugar and salt is in the item..

We even had a skeleton for the day and calculated how much sugar we ate during the day. We have explored the importance of exercise and discovered fun ways to be more active.

In Geography we have explored continents and climate..

..as well as learning about the water cycle and conservation of water. We even made up our own dance routine to show the different parts of the water cycle..

In English we have continued with our reading in class and phonics. We have also read the Carrot Club and used lots of adjectives and connectives to describe a new character we created for the story.

We have one more week to go and we plan on looking at how we can share our worries and ways to relax while also doing some writing for our new teachers. In Maths we are going to do a survey and use this to create pictograms and bar charts.

Mr Hartley wanted to share with you all what his form have been up to..

We have had a new student join our class and he has been visiting us each Friday as part of transition. Last Friday, our class had a mini sports day at Higher Memorial Park. The students had a lot of fun on their sports day and showed some excellent team working skills. We were really impressed with how well they handled the competition. The students competed for each event in teams and worked very well together. They showed a lot of co-operation and maturity in each event that they took part in. The events that we had were the bean bag race, the egg and spoon race, the frisbee toss, the dribbling race and the water balloon race.

At the end of all the different events, the students had the opportunity to soak their teachers by throwing the water balloons, which we had used in a previous event, at them. They seemed to enjoy this activity the most!

Before leaving, they were allowed to have some time at the park to relax and socialise. We were all very impressed with the behaviour and attitude of the students whilst out of school and the good attitude that they had to the competition. We are happy that Dante has fitted in so well to the group and would like to thank the class for giving him a warm welcome. Well done everyone!

On Tuesday Miss Meadows’ class and ours took another trip to the Museum of Science and Industry. The reason for this trip was to look at the art exhibit ‘Atmospheric Memory’ set up for the Manchester International Festival by artist Rafael Lozano-Hemme. The exhibit was a breath-taking interactive experience where the students were able to see hear and touch the sounds that travel through our atmosphere. Prior to visiting the museum, we had a lesson on the inventor of the first computer ‘Charles Babbage’ and his idea that the air is a vast library filled with every word that has ever been spoken.

We started our trip from school and walked safely down to Hollinwood tram stop. The students whom did not have travel passes were then asked to use the machines at the tram stop to pay for their own ticket. We were very impressed with their behaviour whilst walking to the tram stop and how quickly they were able to understand the tram map and how to purchase their own ticket. Once all the students had bought a ticket we boarded the tram to Deansgate.

When we arrived at Deansgate we had some time to explore the Roman Walls, the entrance to Roman Manchester, and play on the grass outside. The students played well together before making their way to the museum.

We then had a short walk to the exhibit built within 52 storage containers. On entering the exhibit, the staff were very thoughtful and offered the students ear defenders as well as directing them to the calm room, should they need to use it. We entered the exhibit down a corridor filled with three-thousand speakers and waves of light. When we got inside the main hall, we were greeted with light shows, smoke machines and many interactive exhibits displaying words in various ways. The experience was very sensory and the students absolutely loved it. It was a joy to see their smiling and excited faces and well worth the visit.

We would like to thank the museum staff and exhibit organisers for accommodating our group, taking into account the needs of the students and giving us a very memorable day. The teachers and teaching assistants also want to thank the students for behaving so well and showing maturity and independence whilst being out and about in public.

Mr Rawson’s class have also been busy..

This week we welcomed back Lucas and Olivia who were at the residential last week and thoroughly enjoyed it by all accounts! The class have been have been working on 24hr and 12hr clock conversions in Maths..

We have also been preparing for the transition with some work on dealing with change and coping strategies..

Donte has now completed his Prince William Pioneer Award and was presented with his certificate by HRH Natalie Gordon!!

Donte did say he was very excited (despite the expression)..

The class have also started Macbeth this week, yet another William Shakespeare classic to add to their list!

The class have also been practicing brushing their teeth..

The Humanities department have been working to develop their knowledge of the holocaust for the upcoming school year. As part of this development, both Hollinwood and New Bridge humanities departments took a trip to the Auschwitz concentration camp in Poland lat week. Whilst there they were able to focus on the individual people affected by the holocaust and have a guided tour of the grounds. After the tour they were able to sit and reflect with a Rabbi whilst joining in with a Hebrew prayer. Just before leaving, each teacher was given a candle to light and put on the memorial as a symbol of remembrance.

Here are a few words from Miss Sanderson who described her trip to Auschwitz..

“This trip brought feelings of great sorrow and hatred as expected when visiting such a place, but whilst I was there we were told stories of individuals inside the camps and how they made a home out of what can only be described as Hell. These individuals made me feel a sense of love, pride and strength both physically and mentally to endure these conditions and work together to ensure that future generations remember what happened to the innocent communities who faced the hatred of the Third Reich. After praying with the Rabbi he spoke a few words which I found to be of some comfort; “When you leave here today, remember those who were lost and carry their stories, share them with others and never let their light go out.”

Both Hollinwood and New Bridge will be working together now to create a Remembrance Day for Holocaust Memorial Day in the next academic year.

As you may know, the secondary pupils follow a point system – some of our pupils have worked extremely hard in lessons with their behaviour, their attitude to learning and completing work that has been set that this morning Miss Bones had rewarded them with a rewards breakfast. We had another 6 pupils getting a reward breakfast. Well done to these pupils.

On Tuesday, our Prince William Award for the year came to an end and a wonderful presentation was given to the pupils and families. You have already seen Miss McMurray’s Key Stage 4 Explorers but here are our Key Stage 2 Pioneers receiving their awards..

The Prince William Award will be carrying on with our Key Stage 4 pupils next year.

On Thursday some of our pupils in Key Stage 3 and 4 went off to play a game of basketball with other pupils from New Bridge and Spring Brook. Ronnie and Lewis’s team won their matches and the boys managed to go over to New Bridge School to receive their medals..

Well done as well to all our SEAL Superstars and our Stars of the Week – here are just some of them..

Thomas for outstanding work in English all week..

Marco-Jaq for outstanding class work in every lesson this week..

George for coping with change and engaging really well with his friends..

Ivy for asking for help when needed at home and school..

All Mrs Lomax’s class for being superstars in class by showing lots of good listening and learning this year..

All Miss Parkinson’s class for dealing with change and transitions..

..together with lots of other children!

Well done everyone!!

I hope you all have a lovely weekend,


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