05 Feb

This week was Children’s Mental Health Week and this year, more than ever, we all need to focus on our mental health and support each other. This year’s ‘Time to Talk Day’ 2021 was on Thursday 4th February. Time to Talk Day is a national annual event that promotes mental health and wellbeing and encourages people’s understanding of well health and wellbeing as well as promoting openness and discussion.

This year, Hollinwood Academy adopted the colour green to show that at Hollinwood Academy everyone cares about mental health and wellbeing – hence our school colour of green! We also adopted to use a heart shape as it is a widely recognised symbol of caring. All of our students in school or working remotely at home were asked to create a green heart shaped window hanger that they can display in their windows at school or at home so that it reminds them every day of looking after their own mental health. Our students both in school and at home openly talked about mental health and gave each other tips and ideas on activities they can do to help them stay happy and calm and focused on the power of doing something small that can make a difference.

Here are some more highlights from our fabulous students this week:

Miss Daniel’s form…

During History, we have been learning about the Black Death, where it originated and the symptoms of how it spread around Europe.

During Living Skills, we have been learning what it takes to be a potter, we had a go at creating our own pottery, the students really enjoyed doing this.

Our form have really enjoyed making hearts for mental health awareness week, the children created these using Hama beads.

Miss McDonald’s class…

The children have had a great week both at home and in school. We have been very crafty this week. In Maths, we collected a set number of objects and then had to create something with them; the children really enjoyed this activity and it was great to see them get outdoors and counting and collecting different objects creating pictures and sculptures.

Another Maths lesson this week involved making some ‘crafty hands’, these were to help the children with their number bond work. It was nice to see the children at home and at school making these ‘crafty hands’ and using them to complete their Maths work. We also linked our English lesson in with this as the children then wrote instructions on how they made them.

Following on from this lesson, the children made milkshakes one day for Maths, they had to measure out the ingredients as part of their Maths lesson. Then for their English work, the children again had to write instructions on how they made their milkshake.

In another English lesson this week, the children enjoyed reading a story ‘Stop pot, stop!’. The story was all about a school fair and a popcorn stand. The children then had to create a poster advertising what they would have on their stand at the school fair.

For time to talk day we joined two small classes from the same bubble, we made sure we all washed our hands and respected each other’s work stations. We had a wonderful time talking about how we feel and shared what tips we use to keep calm and how to ask each other for help when we need it.

We then made some salt dough love hearts ready to paint green once they have dried, after that we coloured in some green love hearts and each wrote something we like about ourselves, these have been stuck on our classroom doors for everyone to see when they walk by. After a lot of talking and creativity we iced some biscuits and then we got to eat them!

Miss Carpenter has been impressed with the cooking skills again this week…

This week we have a special set of instructions from one of our talented Year 7s. If you would like to make the trifle, please follow his amazingly detailed instructions and step by step guide.

It has been a very busy week in the food room. Mrs Potts’ form have been taking part in their technical skills challenges for their coursework. They all did extremely well and we had some fantastic outcomes. More of the same next week and I cannot wait to see what is produced.

Miss Marston’s class…

We have had a great week this week and everyone has worked very hard. In topic, we have been exploring things that melt, we looked at animals on the ice and watched as it melted. Then we looked at melted snowmen and made funny faces out of buttons and raisins.

We had lots of fun exploring the new sensory circuit, especially on the trampolines and balancing on the stepping stones.

In our living skills lesson we learnt about washing dishes and how important it is to clean up after ourselves. We cleaned the dishes very well and then we splashed and got the classroom very wet! Sorry caretaker John.

We enjoyed mark making and painting with different fruit and veg, it was very messy but we made lots of pretty pictures.

On Thursday, we designed and decorated our Mental Health stars. Everyone enjoyed getting messy and using the paintbrushes and glitter to make them shiny. We then talked about our feelings and pulled funny faces.

We have had a great week and we can’t wait for next week now.

Mr Gold’s form…

This week in form we were very sad to hear of the passing of Sir Tom Moore and we decided as a class to pay a tribute to his life and amazing work he did for charity by making a banner to display in the classroom. The students also learned about his life, how he served his country in the second world war and his contribution to raising money for the NHS.

This week we have been learning about mental health and wellbeing and we have completed a display board and a display outside of the classroom to show our respects.

Miss Simms’ class…

We have been practising our sensory circuit at home and at school.

In Outdoor Education we have been creating our very own mini sensory garden! Matthew also had a go at creating an amazing bird feeder at home with his Mum and Dad. Leo has been going on lots of walks this week and has been enjoying the fresh air.

In Science we have been investigating how different materials dissolve in water. Leo completed a great experiment at home to see if he could separate a salt and water mixture using evaporation.

For Time to Talk Day we made our own salt dough, decorated some tasty biscuits and wrote about all the things we like about ourselves inside a love heart. We spoke about how important it is to talk about our feelings and share our worries with other people.

Miss Nuttall’s form…

The students have really enjoyed being creative and having a chance to experiment with their ideas. We made a range of green hearts and butterflies from hama beads and pom-poms to create a wreath that we can hang on our form class board and best of all getting messy with clay!! We know how important mental health is and we can’t wait to be together again in class.

Miss Collinge’s class…

Our topic this half term is ‘Winter Wonderland.’ We have explored arctic animals, snow and ice. This week we used ice and salt to make our own instant ice cream! It was fun to make and even more fun to eat.

Miss Meadow’s class…

We have had a very productive week. We have used our senses to make a sensory garden, we were proud of all our students because they participated and had lots of fun. They challenged themselves with different smells; we found some worms which we placed into Mr Hartley’s worm factory. We also tested different materials to find out which one would make the best waterproof jacket and we learnt two new words: water-resistant and absorbent.

We started our reading and listening session with Miss O’Brien by making Gruffalo cakes and read beautifully with expression; our Gruffalo voices were very scary! We have also been doing lots of handwriting practice, we all challenged ourselves and had a very positive attitude.

In ICT, we made iMovie videos recording our 5 layers of the rainforest and learnt how to incorporate titles and music. We discussed Children’s Mental Health Week and designed hearts and pic collages to raise awareness for mental health. Everyone has tried really hard this week with their learning, at home and school. We are really proud of everyone. Well done.

Miss Fletcher’s class…

This week we have been learning about the different layers of the rainforest. We enjoyed exploring the garden area to find plants to make our own mini replicas of the rainforest.

This week we said goodbye to our TA, Miss Jenkinson. We made some chicken themed gifts for our favourite ‘Miss Chickenson’ and we hope she has a lovely time in her new class. We welcomed Miss Khatun to our class and look forward to her helping us learn over the coming months.

The students have been working hard in school and at home in Maths, focusing on subtraction and division questions.

In English and art we have been focusing on Children’s Mental Health week and have made some wonderful character descriptions of some of our friends in school. In art we made some fantastic pieces of artwork around ‘self-expression’, it was lovely to see the students expressing their individual styles and interests through their work.

In Attention Awareness we practiced fine motor skills and made Chinese dragon puppets.

Mr Stewart’s class…

This week in class, we started the week with a Science experiment around plaque and how different liquids affect the build-up of plaque on your teeth. We did this using egg shells, leaving the plaque to build up over the week. When we investigated the results, we discovered that vinegar and coke are both bad for your teeth. Water was the best and milk was ok, although the milk had curdled (gross!).

We also continued our study of the Amazon Rainforest, focusing on the different layers of the rainforest. To do this we made our own mini-rainforests out of old plastic bottles, soil, leaves and twigs. We labelled these to consolidate our understanding. The finished products were very impressive.

We have also continued to look at art from around the world, and this week we focused on Hindu patterns. We created our own inspired Hindu celebrations to create some brilliant pieces of art with elephants.

We have also been competing in Taskmaster challenges, including who can get closest to standing up for exactly 100 seconds and throwing a teabag into a mug from the furthest distance.

Mr Hartley’s class…

This week we have made great progress in making sensory gardens. The students have had some creative ideas and designed some fantastic gardens.

In art, Miss Rudge asked the students to create some Arabic mosaics and do some calligraphy with Arabic words.

On Fridays, we have now decided to take part in Hollinwood Academy’s Police Academy. The students are currently waiting for their uniforms and will be doing various exercises as well as learning about the fantastic and courageous work of the police each week.

Mrs Woodhead’s class…

We have had a fabulous week with water and this week was ice week. We have been learning all about how ice is formed and what happens when ice gets warm. We have learnt that ice can go backwards and forwards from water to ice and back again. To prove this we made ice lanterns with our melted ice cubes.

In Maths we continued our capacity work and had great fun playing ‘Don’t fill me up’ with a partner.

In English we read and signed the poem ‘Cold’ we practiced writing the poem and created an icy picture to go with it.

A lot of teamwork was required this week and what a brilliant job they all did both in school and at home.

Miss Bones’ form…

This week, we had an afternoon to focus on children’s mental health. For part of the afternoon the students took part in the green heart campaign and coloured in some green hearts to contribute to our new classroom display.

The display is designed to inform the children that staff are available to talk to or listen to any worries/concerns they may have and to normalise talking about mental health.

The theme of the display is based on a tree, allowing the students to take a leaf from it, write their name on it and place it in the box, this is a way the students can communicate to staff that they want to share their worries/concerns and staff can arrange to do this with them on a 1-1 basis.

The students also enjoyed making their very own sensory gardens in outdoor education this week. The students used the previous lesson to design their sensory garden, making it accessible to those with disabilities and considering the different senses that they would experience in their garden. Here are the final products:

Now to our amazing SUPER STARs and SEALs

  • Miss Parkinson’s STAR of the week is Isaam for trying really hard during his Maths lessons and for independently being able to order numbers to 20! Well done Isaam.
  • Miss Parkinson’s SEAL Superstar is David – for being able to talk about his feelings and identify what makes him feel happy. Well done David.
  • Miss McDonald’s STAR of the week is Daniel for working independently and trying first before asking for help.
  • Miss McDonald’s SEAL Superstar of the week is Haoyu for his super ‘crafty hands’ and number bond work in Maths this week.
  • Miss McDonald’s WOW moment goes to Sofia – for her fantastic independent work in English.
  • Miss McDonald’s DOJO winner is Sofia – for collecting the most dojo points this week.

  • Miss Simms’ STAR of the week is Alfie for being such a kind boy to his teachers and friends.

  • Mr Rawson’s STAR of the week is Edward for his hard work in Maths and completing his work independently.

  • Mrs Lomax’s STAR of the week is Alfie for contributing more during class discussions.
  • Mrs Lomax’s SEAL of the week is Amelia for sharing kind messages during Time to talk day.
  • Mrs Lomax’s DOJO winner is Prez. Well done!
  • Mrs Woodhead’s STAR of the week is Hamza trying very hard and having a fantastic week.

  • Mrs Woodhead’s SEAL Superstars is Yousef accepting help from adults when he is feeling sad.

  • Mr Corrigan’s STAR this week is Brooke for a brilliant week — waiting turns on the carpet and using the new sensory circuit really well

  • Mr Corrigan’s SEAL Superstar this week is Joshua for having excellent manners with his friends.

  • Mr Corrigan’s WOW moment goes to Caitlin for accepting change in her routine.

Now to our ‘Commitment to Learning Stars’:

This week, we have appointed Miss Prescott to take over Miss McDonald’s maternity cover and Miss McAndles to take over Miss Nuttall’s maternity cover. Miss McDonald will be starting her maternity leave after February half term and Miss Nuttall in early March. I am sure you will join us in wishing them both all the best in their exciting new roles, with Miss McDonald becoming a mum for the first time and Miss Nuttall welcoming her fourth child. We cannot wait to share their baby news once the little ones have safely arrived.

Can I just remind all our families that school closes next Friday 12th February for February half term and we have a staff INSET day on Monday 23rd February, as per our school calendar.

Have a lovely weekend and stay safe.

Mrs Millard

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