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Message From The Headteacher

Fri 17 Oct 2014

 

What an exciting and varied week we’ve had ! Year 6 visited Technopop at Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park on Wednesday and reported that they had a fantastic time. This is a pop-up technology event where the children got a chance to see and play with some exciting new computing technology. As you may know the ICT curriculum is now called ‘Computing’ and we are busy working towards meeting all the new standards  -staff and children, which includes trips and events like this one to enrich the learning opportunities.

Wednesday was ‘No pens day’ - a day devoted to concentrating on our speaking and listening skills. Our pen monitors were patrolling the classrooms confiscating any pens or pencils being used and one class were enjoying their learning so much they suggested we should never use pens. There were many varied ways of taking the register. Newcastle class used their fingerprints to record their attendance.

Next week is Diversity Week. This ever popular week just keeps getting bigger and better. On Thursday evening –23rd October, we have Diversity Evening. Leea in the kitchen has planned a delicious selection of food and will have refreshments available to buy. There will be entertainment from dancers, singers and drummers. More information will be available next week but keep the date free! Tickets are available from the front office.

Thank you very much to those parents and carers who attended our two curriculum evenings on Tuesday. The choir sang beautifully and the children (and some adults) had a great time digging for jewels in fossils while learning about the new topics and activities we have for the children. Lots of pupils and parents got involved with PE activities, and young detectives took part in the Literacy Whodunnit. The feedback from those who attend has been brilliant, and we hope to have more evenings like this in the future, for those who were not able to attend this time. Thank you also to all the governors who came along to introduce themselves and talk to parents.

This week Councillor Rathbone came to visit the assembly for Year4-6 and talked about his role in local government as part of Local Democracy Week. He also spoke with the School Council. He was very impressed with the questions he was asked and says that Millfields children always have a challenge for him!

On Thursday our years 4-6 cycling club competed in the Springfield Hill climb race. By all accounts they did very well. We will find out our teams position next week. Cycling in schools has been getting more and more popular and they had almost 100 children competing on Thursday. A borough record. We’ll let you know how well they did as soon as we find out.

I met with the hardworking group of parents and professionals who are working on the next stage of our playground development. We’re hoping to have a new element completed in the half term and are working towards another big project in the Summer holidays. The new covered area certainly came in handy last Friday for the tuck shop which otherwise would have been washed out.

Have a good weekend.
Best Wishes, Jane

 

Message From the Headteacher

Fri 10 Oct 2014

 

Today the whole school has been focussing on learning about e-safety and how to keep ourselves safe when using the internet on digital devices like mobile phones, tablets and ipads. We have included some information in this mag to help you discuss what they have learnt with your child. I highly recommend our website of the week as it has lots of useful information for you so you can support your child’s understanding of the topic and lots of fun (and educational) games your child can play to reinforce their learning.

On Wednesday evening, despite the rain, lots of parents ventured out to attend the early years social evening. A great time was had by all and I’m sure many fast friendships were formed. If you were unable to make it, don’t worry we hold many events throughout the year to give you the opportunity to meet staff and other parents in a relaxed environment.

Next Tuesday we are hosting a Curriculum Evening at 4pm (repeated at 6pm). All parents and carers are warmly invited to attend. It is an opportunity to learn a little bit more about the topics that your child learns about in school and about the changes to the curriculum that are being implemented at the moment. We hope to see you there.

Currently, applications for next years Nursery, Reception and Secondary School places are open. More details are available inside this mag about each. Please ensure you apply on time to be considered for the school of your choice. Late applications have, in the past ,resulted in children not having a school place for September or being sent to a school they did not want and is some distance away. Chris has been supporting parents and carers with completing the online form for Secondary school. The deadline is rapidly approaching for Secondary school applications please make sure you have applied.

Can I remind everyone to make sure your child is appropriately dressed for our ever-changing autumn weather. Lots of children (and parents!) were caught out at home time yesterday when the rain storm hit and they didn’t have a hooded, waterproof coat. We encourage the children to go outside in all weathers except heavy rain so they need to have appropriate clothing available with them all day.

We are always updating our school communication databases, so please ensure that if any of your contact details have changed that you notify the office as soon as you can. We have had several incidences this week when the office has tried to contact a parent in an emergency and have been unable to speak to parents.

The strike action that was scheduled for Tuesday 14th October, has now been postponed by the unions, so the Children’s Centre will be open as usual.

Finally, as I am sure many of you will have heard the Hackney Director of Education –Tricia Okoruwa, sadly passed away recently, after losing her battle with cancer. Today I  attended her funeral along with hundreds of others to pay my respects to a long-standing colleague, and the woman who worked relentlessly to improve the life chances for children in Hackney. She will be missed, and our thoughts are with her family.

Have a good weekend. Best Wishes, Jane

 

 

 

Message From The Headteacher

Fri 03 Oct 2014

 

Children and staff have had a great time this week –solving problems and puzzles as part of Maths Week. Each class has taken part in a Maths puzzles workshop that has been great fun, as well as making the children really think, encouraging cooperation and promoting teamwork. The feedback has been very positive so thank you to Keli, our Maths Subject Leader for organising it. The children have also been looking at problems and puzzles during Maths lessons in class. Photos of the event will be on the screen in the main foyer soon. Your child should also have received a maths home learning challenge –prizes for this will be given out in assemblies next week.Also this week, as part of their topic on Africa, Y3 enjoyed a fantastic day of African arts. The children painted African masks, took part in drumming workshops and dance workshops. There was a great deal of excitement at the end of the day as they told about their brilliant day! Let’s hope that all the enthusiasm feeds back in to their topic books!Also, you will have noticed that the scaffolding is finally down, and the new sheltered staging area is now open! There are still a few smaller bits to be completed but the children really enjoyed using it at lunchtime yesterday. Year 3 and Year 5 classes have also been working with artist, Tim Davies, to create some lovely artwork to go above the main entrance area and on the main school gates. The artwork will take the form of a welcome sign and also a London skyline. The preliminary work looks really good so I am really looking forward to seeing the finished product. We have also had a ‘Playground Working Party’ meeting this week to look at the next stage of the project, and to think about fundraising and bid-writing to raise the money needed to continue with the plan. If you would like to get involved, and you are, or know a landscape artist, playground designer or gardener –please contact Pinny Grylls, pinnygrylls@googlemail.com, to offer your help and support.My apologies as well this week, as on Monday, the kitchen had no power, so it was all hands to the deck, preparing sandwiches for the whole school. The children didn’t seem to mind too much, but thank you for your understanding. On the theme of school dinners, a group of parents met with me and Leea –Catering Manager, this week to talk about school meals and think about changes that can be made to accommodate the 500 plus meals that we now serve every day, while keeping the content healthy and varied to meet school food standards, and also to look at reducing the sugar content of desserts, limiting cake to only twice a week and thinking of alternatives that children like to eat. We will be producing a revised menu in the next few weeks for you to look at. And don’t forget, you can try the school meals at our Parents’ Evening in November or sample some of the food we serve at the Diversity Evening on Thursday 23rd October. We look forward to hearing your views in the coming weeks. Finally, have a good weekend. Best Wishes, Jane

 

Message From the Headteacher

Fri 26 Sep 2014

 

Firstly, I would like to announce the winners of the classroom door competition. The teachers and children have worked really hard to get the doors looking great, reflecting the staff and children in the class, and ensuring that the children know a little bit more about some of the places and cities in the UK and where we live. EYFS winner: Edinburgh Class KS1 winner: Nottingham Class LKS2 Class: Sheffield Class UKS2 winner: Newcastle Class. There are photos of the doors outside my office for anyone interested.

This week, the children have been busy working on their new topics in class. As you will know if you came to the ‘Welcome Meetings’, Millfields has launched a brand new school curriculum for the 2014-15 academic year, in line with the statutory changes required by the Department for Education. Across subjects such as History, Geography, Art and Computing, children will be able to get their teeth into stimulating new topics such as the Mysterious Mayans, Excavating Egypt, Invasion and Amazonian Adventure. The original, intensively-researched curriculum has been formulated by subject leaders at Millfields, drawing on years of teaching experience and informed knowledge. In order to share the new curriculum with the whole school community, we are holding a ‘Curriculum Evening’ on Tuesday 14th October. The subject leaders will be sharing lesson plans, practical activities and information –at 4pm-5pm and 6pm-7pm. There will also be an opportunity on the evening to meet some of the Governors who link with specific curriculum areas. The staff have also been looking at and planning the next term’s topics already, so we welcome any feedback on what you or your child has to say about the curriculum.

This year’s Junior Road Safety Officers, Aamina Bala in Year 4 , and Victor Gomes in Year 5, attended their first training session this week. They have already fed back to me about what their role entails and what their responsibilities are for the coming year. They will be hosting assemblies for all the different year groups in the coming weeks. Also on road safety, you may have noticed that there is a more regular traffic enforcement patrol outside the school gates. I met with Elaine Beckett, the Principal Road Safety Officer at Hackney Council to express our concerns about the dangerous crossing on Rushmore Road, and we I’ll be looking to introduce some more traffic enforcement measures very soon. Please do not park on any of the double yellow or zig-zag lines outside the school –it is very dangerous. Thank you for your cooperation.

As you will hopefully know, it is Maths week from Monday 29th September until Friday 3rd October. This year, our theme is puzzles and solving puzzles. There are lots of workshops for each class, and special lessons planned next week, and a home learning challenge with prizes –look out for more details on Monday.

Also, thank you to all the staff and parents who made cakes for today’s Macmillan Coffee Morning –it has been a great success. We will let you know how much we raised next week.

Finally, have a good weekend. Best Wishes, Jane

Best, Jane

 

 

 

Message From the Headteacher

Fri 19 Sep 2014

 

This week, all of the children have been busy in class, enthusiastically focussing on their new learning in Maths, writing, reading and topic. There were 2 great sharing assemblies this morning –well done to Manchester Class and Dundee Class who shared their work so far this term. It is always a tough job to be the first class assembly of the school year, so fantastic work everyone!

We also had our first Celebration Assemblies this week. For those of you who do not know about these assemblies –they are held weekly and are all about celebrating good behaviour, good teamwork, good effort and good work! Each week the class teacher chooses a ‘Star of the Week’ who is awarded a certificate for their achievements. As well as this award, we also present ‘Spanish Star of the Week’ for each age-phase –selected by Belen our Spanish teacher, and lots of children receive a ‘Happy Faces’ certificate for achieving  3 happy faces in class over the week. Other awards presented are for good lunchtime manners and behaviour and children, mainly in KS2 can earn a ‘Pen Licence’ when they have mastered cursive and neat writing techniques. And I have already sent lots of postcards home for excellent work, especially in Year 2 –the children are so proud to share their work with me, so thank you. I look forward to seeing work from other year groups in the coming weeks. As you can read, we always have lots to celebrate at Millfields!

In a special assembly this week, Millfields were awarded the ‘Golden Shoe’ Trophy. This award is for the massive effort that you and your children made to walk to school during the summer term. In total, we had 574 children walking to school at least once a week. This was an impressive 91% of children receiving a badge for walking to school. Well done and keep up the good work! We are featured on the Hackney website link here http://news.hackney.gov.uk/hackney-council-stars/

We also had a Governors School Tour this morning. Thank you to two of our new governors, LEA and Parent Governor who had a walk around the school and Children’s Centre. It was noted that all the children were on task, and focussed and that there was a very calm and orderly atmosphere in the school. We look forward to more Governor Visits that will focus on specific areas of the curriculum over the coming weeks.

The Leadership Team have been meeting with teachers this week, to look at provision for all pupils in their class, and to ensure that the appropriate support and challenge are in place for individuals and groups of children. There will be a follow-up meeting next half term to look at progress in reading, writing and Maths.

I have my fingers crossed that the building works is near completion and that the scaffolding will be down in the next few days! Thank you again for being so patient. The children have been fantastic and are now keen to see the finished project too.

Finally, have a good weekend. I hope the sun is still shining!

Best, Jane

 

 

Message From The Headteacher

Fri 12 Sep 2014

 

The term has started really well, and all the children are now back and back to the usual school routines. As you may know, your child’s topic work starts with a WOW trip that links to the topic that the children will be learning about this term. So this week, Year 6 classes visited London Zoo as part of their work in Science on habitats, Year 2 classes visited the Science Museum as part of their topic on space, Year 1 classes enjoyed a day out at Whipsnade Zoo as part of their science work on animals, and Portsmouth Class visited the British Museum as part of their topic on Egypt. Thank you to the parents who volunteered to help out with the trips on the day.

As you will know, all of the classes this year are named after British cities. During the first few days of term, the children were learning about the cities, and did lots of map-work to locate their class name and London on a UK map. This week, the classroom doors have been decorated to represent that city, as well as including a photo of all staff and children that belong to that class. The teachers all love a bit of competition and the doors look great. It really has been an amazing effort –thank you. Vicky and I have been around the school today looking at the doors, and have chosen a winner from each age-phase, so look out for the winners’ names in next week’s Mag. I will be displaying photos of all the doors in the main foyer for you all to see.

A special mention and well done to all of the children who sat their piano grade 1 exam last term. And well done to all of the Year 6 boys who went to the Hackney Football trials this week –lots of them got chosen to go through to the next round. Thank you to the parents and carers who attended the ‘Welcome Meetings’ for each year group this week. If you need any of the leaflets about the new curriculum, important dates, and information on how you can help your child at home in Maths and Literacy, please see the main office who will be happy to copy one for you.

On Sunday, some members of the school choir will be taking part in the annual Thames Festival. It is always a great day out. The Children’s Choir will be singing at 1pm outside the Scoop. The weather looks good so hope you can make it.

Thank you for your patience with the scaffolding and playground works – after lots of hiccups, there is almost an end in sight. We are hoping (fingers crossed) that it will be only more week, and then the new sheltered quiet area will be completed and ready for the children to enjoy. As well as this work, some of our children will be working with artist, Tim Davies, to design the Millfields ‘Welcome’ sign for above the door, and will also be designing an art piece to go on the main school gates. I hope that you have also noticed some of the new signs and maps that have been put up in the playground –the children have certainly enjoyed looking at them at playtime, and there are more to come.

I hope that Year 6 parents all received their secondary School booklets and that some of you took the opportunity to visit the Secondary Schools Fair earlier this week. We will be holding meetings for any parent who needs help completing their application forms online on the following dates: Friday 3rd October and Thursday 9th October.

Finally, please look out for the ‘Artist of the Week’ competition on the back of the Mag!

I hope that you have a good weekend.
Best Wishes, Jane

 

Message From the Headteacher

Fri 05 Sep 2014

 

Welcome back to pupils, children and staff. And a special welcome to all our new Nursery and Reception children and parents. I hope you have had a good break, and enjoyed the sunshine and the time with friends and family.

As you will have noticed, the next stage of the playground development works that were scheduled to take place over the summer break are still on-going.  As usual, Darren and Grant worked extremely hard over the holidays –a huge thank you,  but unfortunately the building work delay was out of our hands. We appreciate your patience and understanding –the scaffolding should only be up for another 10 days or so, and then the finished entrance area with a new welcome sign, a covered stage area with seating and storage will hopefully be completed. This area will be a quiet space for chatting and reading during playtimes, and also for use by class groups for performance and learning activities. We have also removed the staging area and created a ‘hill’ that has some temporary grass  on it that will be replaced later in the school year. The children seem to be enjoying sitting on the grass and chatting with their friends. We have also had a Patball Court painted in the back playground. In assemblies this week, I have spoken to the children about the importance of staying safe around the scaffolding and being aware of dangers please reiterate this with your child at home. If you would like to see the plans for the whole playground redevelopment, please look on the school website.

All of the children are looking refreshed, smart in their new uniforms, and eager to learn. I hope that your child is reporting that they are happy and settled in their new classes with their new teachers. If there are any issues please speak to the class teacher in the first instance or catch me at the school gates in the morning or at the end of the day. Or speak to one of us at the ‘Welcome meetings ‘next week.

The Year Group welcome meetings are an opportunity for you to meet your child/ren's new teacher and find out what they will be learning in school and how you can support them at home. There will also be a Curriculum Booklet sent home at the end of next week, as well as a brochure about the new topic-based curriculum that has been devised as part of the national changes being implemented this September.

Welcome to all our new staff, Emma, Wayne, Terry, Alison, Matthew, Keli, Kingsley and Sihem -teachers, and Emily, Abigail, Lily, Ajanette, Anthony -support staff.

All the classes from Years 1-6 have been busy already, learning about the UK city that their class is named after, as well as creating their own Class Charter based on the rights of the child that we advocate as a Rights Respecting School.

Please remember to look for information on the school noticeboards, the school website, via text or email - if you have not let the office know your email address, please let them know asap, as well as on the Millfields Mag.

I hope you have a good weekend. Best Wishes, Jane