26 May

Welcome to the final blog of this half term. It was an emotional and sad start to the week with the news of the bombing at the MEN. I know as a school and Group our thoughts are with all the families who have lost someone. During our Drama lessons with Miss Rudge, we took a little time out to discuss Monday’s attack and studied the beautifully inspiring poem, ‘This Is The Place’, written by Tony Walsh who performs as ‘Longfella’. Longfella delivered the poem on stage at the vigil at Albert Square, remembering the victims of Monday’s attack. Miss Rudge had never been more proud to be a teacher or a Mancunian, our pupils acted with the utmost maturity and compassion..

This week has been very busy and our staffing team have worked hard to help our pupils who have been tired and ready for the half term break. I have asked teachers to share anything that they felt parents would like to read about rather than focusing on specific classes this week, so here is a selection of what we have been up to..

On Wednesday Mr Hanif and Miss Peak took five of our Key Stage 4 pupils to visit the Imperial War Museum North as Mr Hanif reports..

This term the Key Stage 4 pupils have been exploring the theme of warfare and conflict in their History lessons. We have focused on the First World War and learnt about the main causes of the war, as well as looking at the trigger event of the assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand. We have had the opportunity to borrow a box full of resources from the museum over the last few weeks which have really brought the topic to life for the pupils. The box contained both replica and original items from WWI and we have really enjoyed trying on the different masks and hats as well as being able to handle some replica weapons used in the war..

The loaned resources had to be returned this week which gave us the opportunity to visit the museum. We were asked to write a message to the next school to borrow the resources which we have put in the box..

 We are very grateful to the museum for the loan of the box as a number of classes across both schools have really benefitted from exploring all the wonderful items. The trip was really enjoyed by the pupils and we were lucky and honoured to meet David Teacher, a D Day veteran..

David was able to talk to the pupils about his many experiences during the war including how he was one of the first soldiers to drive his Bedford truck on to Juno beach just after dawn on the 6th June 1944. The pupils were fascinated by David’s stories and couldn’t stop asking questions. Summer was really surprised when she asked David how he felt on that morning and he said that he wasn’t nervous but impatient to get started. He knew nothing was going to stop them and that they were about to make history. David had us all enthralled and before we knew it we had been talking for the best part of an hour! What really pleased me the most was how engaged all the pupils were – we hadn’t realised that we had quite a crowd gathered around us who were all listening and didn’t need to ask David anything as our pupils were asking all the questions that they wanted to find out about. It is for these moments that I wanted to become a History teacher, and this is why these visits are vital in enriching the curriculum for our pupils.

David will be recreating his journey once more this year and driving a refurbished Bedford truck back on to the same beach with the permission of the French Government. He will be followed by a film crew who will be making a documentary about his journey. If anyone wants to read more about David’s fascinating story, please have a look at the RAF Beach Units website here.

I have invited David and his fellow veterans to our school next year to share some more of their stories with all our pupils and David has graciously accepted (with the proviso that he’s still around). I for one cannot wait.

After speaking to David we were then able to explore the museum and experience some of the sights and smells that our soldiers faced..

We even got to try on some camouflage gear..

Thanks to Miss Peak and all the pupils (who were impeccably behaved and a credit to the school) I had a wonderful day, one of my favourites at New Bridge (and that includes having been to Disney last year)..

Now on to the youngest of our pupils, as Mrs Dunsdon reports..

WOW! What a super morning we have had in reception class for our Africa Day! Thank you to all the parents, grandparents and siblings who came along to support the morning. We had lots of fun and the sun shone down on us all morning. Our first activity was an African Dance workshop led by the students from Lumenus. Firstly they gave us an outstanding performance of African Dance and then put us all through our paces with a vigorous warm up and some African Dance steps. We were all expertly shimmering, stepping and roaring by the end. Thank you to Mrs Chapell, Miss Begum and our Lumenus superstars..

After all that dancing we were ready for a cold drink and a breath of fresh air before coming into the classroom for a theatrical performance by the children of ‘Handa’s Surprise’. The children all played a part in the play and were brilliant as they pretended to be the animals creeping up to Handa taking their favourite fruit. The children wowed the audience reading their sentences out in big clear voices. Well done, everyone..

We had a lovely play session outside with snacks and drinks including African Rice Bread that the children had baked the day before. We played with musical instruments including African drums, bricks and did some chalking on the floor..

Our final activity was led by our Activ8 pathway students. They planned and facilitated a really adventurous Safari Stroll which included finding African animals and completing a range of activities..

We did the Zebra Sprint, Snake Crawl, Crocodile Snap, Feed the Giraffe, Elephant Stomp and pin the missing stripes on the Zebra! Fortunately all the children returned to class and nobody was eaten by a lion! Thank you so much to Mr Greenway, Mr Lawrence and all the Activ8 students and staff for such a brilliant activity and also for presenting the medals to all the children and adults..

It has been lovely to be able to spend the morning with the children and families and we have all enjoyed showing the things we have learnt in this topic. Huge thanks to everyone who has made this morning a success and a special thank you to our children who always give everything 100% and show just how brilliant they are.

Mrs Halkyard wanted to also share with you some of the work that her class have been doing..

The class decided that they would make the outdoor area more colourful so have planted some flowers and plants in tubs on the playground to make it look brighter..

As part of our Maya topic they have created some papier mache masks – here are some pictures of them making them..

And finally, Miss Rudge wanted to share with you a fantastic opportunity that has been provided to our Key Stage 2 learners. Mrs Chappell has been able to secure the opportunity for some of our young people to be involved in exciting Dance Therapy workshops. We are working alongside a company called ‘Touchdown Dance’ who are Children in Need funded and our first session was dance movement based on ‘Dealing with Change’..

During assembly, Miss Rudge’s class looked at the Islamic celebration of Ramadan leading up to Eid..

We are very lucky to have some children in our form who follow the Islamic faith and were able to help us understand Ramadan a little further and even translate a little Arabic for us too! We had lots of fun making bunting displaying ‘Ramadan Mubarak’ which some of our Muslim pupils explained means ‘Happy Ramadan!’..

Our SEAL Superstars and our Stars of the Week are:

  • Mrs Dunsdon’s class:
    Star of the Week: Farrukh, Marley, George, Joshua, Tyler, Lewis, Amario, Myla, James, Caelan, Vincent and Nimra who all took part in Africa Day for being brilliant!

SEAL Superstar: Tyler and Nimra for knowing how to make themselves feel better without hurting others

  • Mr Corrigan’s class:
    Star of the Week: Thomas for being brave and talking about his feelings..

SEAL Superstar: Bronson for a fantastic effort using his breathing to help him stay calm this week..

  • Mrs Lomax’s class – Mrs Lomax has not been in this week but  Mr Corrigan has chosen the stars for her:
    Star of the Week: Darnell for coping really well with a different routine and new class rules..

SEAL Superstar: Reece for engaging really well in class discussions with great ideas..

  • Miss Louden’s class:
    Star of the Week: Justin for working hard with his division equations in Maths
    SEAL Superstar: Jenna for trying hard to have kind hands and feet at home
  • Miss Parkinson’s class:
    Star of the Week: Jayden for fantastic work in ICT creating a tsunami using 2animate
    SEAL Superstar: Connor for joining in and identifying ways to calm down when feeling angry
  • Mrs Halkyard’s class:
    Star of the Week: Ronnie for always being helpful and going out of his way to help others
    SEAL Superstar: Luigi for showing good understanding of how to make himself feel better without hurting others
  • Mr Rawson’s class:
    Star of the Week: Daley for helping others with their Maths
    SEAL Superstar: Bradley for being able to control his anger without hurting others

I hope you all have a lovely Bank Holiday weekend and a restful half term.

Jaina

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