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Weekly Blog

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I can’t believe another week has passed since my last blog. I don’t know where the weeks are going – it will soon be half term at this rate!

We had a very special visit on Wednesday morning when Mrs Walton and baby Ollie came to see us. The pupils and staff were besotted with Ollie and Mrs Walton was overloaded with questions and looked positively glowing in her new role as a Mummy. It was lovely to see Mrs Walton and I couldn’t wait to share all the news and developments that have taken place since she started her maternity leave during the summer. Katie and Aiden from Mr Lawton’s class were fascinated by baby Ollie and very inquisitive – Katie adored him and was so gentle with him..

As you can see, baby Ollie is absolutely gorgeous! Mrs Walton has said he is such a good baby and he is doing really well. We are hoping to see Mrs Walton and baby Ollie again soon and I will keep you posted when they visit next.

This week two of our new teachers, Mr Wood and Miss Carpenter, are going to share their learning with you. Let’s start with Mr Wood and his lovely class..

Over the course of the first few weeks of term, we have thoroughly enjoyed getting to know each other and settling in to our new class. Our theme for the half term, ‘Head to Toe,’ has allowed for many interesting and engaging cross-curricular lessons. In the first few weeks we worked on re-telling stories using story sequences and actions. We focused on the classic tale of ‘Little Red Riding Hood’ and made cross curricular links to features of a face. We practised re-telling the story using actions and focused on the facial features of the Big Bad Wolf. This led to a soft play area based lesson where the children took part in a treasure hunt style lesson where they had to find pictures of the different facial features of the Big Bad Wolf and arrange them into groups. As the children placed the images they performed our action for that part of the story which we had practised. The children really enjoyed this lesson and thoroughly enjoyed the run around..

In the more recent weeks, we have been learning about the 5 senses. On Thursday 27th September we conducted an experiment into the 5 senses to see what each child’s preference was. The experiment included smelling a variety of nice..

..and not so nice things..

..listening to instruments such as xylophones, tambourines and drumming instruments..

..feeling a variety of soft, hard, rough and smooth objects..

..tasting a variety of flavoured crisps..

..and deciding whether we prefer to use our eyes to read, watch television, look at paintings and images or to enjoy natural scenery. The experiment provided a great insight to the children’s preferences and there were some very interesting results! The children worked fantastically throughout and were really engaged. They worked like true scientists!

Further learning has included counting forwards and backwards, number sequences and missing numbers in Maths, hygiene in Living Skills..

..as well as Spanish, Music, PE and swimming lessons that the children have all enjoyed. We have had a great start to the year and we are really looking forward to what the rest of the year has in store.

Now let’s go to secondary and Miss Carpenter..

It has been a very busy week with many of our groups. Miss Carpenter’s class enjoyed playing the instruments in Music..

..and they were very successful in conducting an experiment in Science..

During the cooking lessons, we learnt how to make a dish suitable for a vegetarian. All the classes enjoyed making a vegetable chilli – some staff were even treated to this by our students! Some impressive bridge and claw techniques happening again in lessons..

We had a fun lesson on Thursday making fruity kebabs together and then took some time to sit down and eat them. Everybody enjoyed our social time during the lesson, especially the eating part!

On Friday our Key Stage 4 group were learning how to use the grill safely. They made cheese on toast..

I think we may have a ketchup artist here!

Year 7 were using their senses during our lesson this week. They learnt how to create a star profile using descriptive language and a selection of word banks. I think they really enjoyed the taste testing session!

We also made some delicious quiches with Year 10 to link with their protein lesson the previous week. I don’t think many of the quiches made it home, it was a popular lunch time snack!

I was very impressed by the quality and outcome of the cooking this week. Well done to all the classes, I look forward to seeing you next lesson.

Mr Rawson’s Nurture Group are continuing their work on Light in Science..

This week we have been learning about the visible Light Spectrum and how white light is made from 7 different colours. We have looked at how rainbows are formed and what different coloured objects look like under different colour light. The pupils carried out experiments and recorded their findings..

Friday saw staff join in the Macmillan coffee morning. This charity is very close to all of us at Hollinwood Academy and we are pleased to announce we raised a total of £109!! Thank you to a number of staff: Miss Parkinson, Mrs Halkyard, Mrs Knaggs, Mrs Watson and Miss McMurray but a special mention to Mr Heap, Miss Warner and Mrs Bennett.

Unfortunately, this year we were unable to invite parents to our popular Macmillan coffee morning due to capacity. Historically, these events have been very well attended by a number of family members but this year we simply did not have the room in the classes due to our pupil numbers increasing. Mr Quinn mentioned this in his blog last week when he wrote about the growth in pupil numbers and how we are going to manage this moving forward. We will be welcoming families on Wednesday 17th October at 9am and Thursday 18th October at 5.30pm to give you more information. During these sessions Mr Quinn will be discussing class numbers and the challenges we face relating to school place planning. He will also be talking about Assessment Centres, our building extension plans and our Post 16 offer before answering questions from families.

Invitations have been sent home and I really hope you will be able to attend one of the meetings and get a better understanding of school’s position and our plans for the future.

Let’s see who our SEAL Superstars and our Stars of the Week are:

  • Mrs Dunsdon’s class:
    Star of the Week: Ebon for excellent counting work in Maths..

SEAL Superstar: Jacob for building resilience and accepting when activities have finished..

  • Miss Grimsley’s class:
    Star of the Week: Jason for fantastic work in Maths
    SEAL Superstar: Myla for requesting items by taking an adult’s hand and using picture communication..

  • Mrs Lomax’s class:
    Star of the Week: Maisha for doing excellent timeline home learning..

SEAL Superstar: Ibraheem for being able to identify his own strengths and those of his friends..

  • Mr Wood’s class:
    Star of the Week: Christopher for always participating in class discussions, always being curious and asking questions and for always trying his best..

SEAL Superstar: Lewis for working hard on following instructions, sharing and taking turns..

  • Mr Corrigan’s class:
    Star of the Week: Marco-Jaq for some outstanding independent Maths work this week..

SEAL Superstar: Joshua for being a fantastic friend and playing nicely in the activity areas..

Mr Corrigan’s Homework Stars:

  • Miss Parkinson’s class:
    Star of the Week: Byron for trying really hard with his writing
    SEAL Superstar: Zachary for finding out what his friends’ strengths are
  • Mr Heap’s class:
    Star of the Week: Lewis for good behaviour and following instructions first time
    SEAL Superstar: Caelan for describing different feelings
    Our new ‘Marvellous Meerkat’ is James for having a marvellous week at school. We hope you and Meerkat have a fantastic weekend and we can’t wait to hear about your marvellous adventures!
  • Miss Shin’s class:
    Star of the Week: Amelia for communicating using words and participating in lessons
    SEAL Superstar: Lana for being able to identify her strengths and those of others
  • Mrs Halkyard’s class:
    Star of the Week: Jacob for trying hard in all lessons
    SEAL Superstar: Maia for trying hard to find out the strengths of others in her class
  • Mr Rawson’s class:
    Star of the Week: Donte for doing an excellent piece of independent writing in English

Well done, everyone!

Wednesday 10th October is Mental Health Awareness Day, as you will be aware from the letter sent home this week. We work hard at Hollinwood Academy to support our children’s mental health and we will be taking part in a range of activities across school leading up to a celebration assembly on Friday 12th October to raise awareness even further.

We will also be supporting the charity Young Minds and their #HelloYellow mental health awareness campaign. As part of this, we would like to invite all our pupils to wear something yellow, alongside their uniform, on Friday 12th October and to bring in a donation to support Young Minds. You can find out more about the work the charity does on their website here or through social media @YoungMindsUK.

I hope you all have a lovely weekend,


Click here for this week’s news from Graham

You can find all our previous blog entries here


Hollinwood Academy
Roman Road

School Hours

Mon – Fri:
08:45 – 15:00

Breakfast Club runs Mon – Fri:
08:00 – 08:45

After School Clubs run Mon – Thurs:
15:00 – 16:45

Compulsory TIme Open: 31.25 hours

Weekends: Closed

Phone & Email

0161 883 2404