World Book Day

We spent a great day today celebrating World Book Day.  Our Year 6 librarians, supported by Miss Pearce, led the whole school assembly this morning, in which they shared their favourite books and book characters.

They also launched a competition for children to enter.

Children need to take a selfie of themselves reading a book in a strange (but safe) place.  These photos need to be printed, placed in an envelope along with 50p entry fee and handed in to the main office by 14th March.  The winning entry will receive a £25 voucher to spend at our Book Fair, which starts on 16th March.  We’re looking forward to seeing some amusing photos!

Here are a few photos of some of the brilliant costumes we saw today.

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‘League Tables’

Following the recent publication of ‘league tables’ online, I’m keen to highlight some other outcomes which have not been published online or used to form ‘league tables’.

Firstly, our outcomes for children at the end of their Reception year.  Getting it right in the Early Years is crucial and our outcomes for children at the end of Reception have been improving year on year.  In 2016, 77% of our children achieved the expected ‘Good Level of Development’.  You’ll see from the graph that this is above the national average of 69%.

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Children at the end of year 1 are required to take the national phonics screening check.  This is a test of their ability to decode 40 words (20 ‘real’ words and 20 ‘pseudo’ words) and in 2016, 80% of our children reached the expected standard in this phonics check.

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Outcomes at the end of key stage 1 (year 2) are Teacher Assessment judgements.  However, children are required to undertake a test in reading and maths, with these tests being used as part of the evidence to finalise these teacher assessments, along with other evidence from children’s ongoing work in class.

Again, you will see that the number of children achieving the expected standard in all subjects is above the national average, with 70% of our children achieving the expected standard in reading, writing and maths.

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Our end of key stage 2 (year 6) test results were disappointing.  Published outcomes at the end of year 6 are based solely on test results for reading and maths, with writing being  teacher assessed.  Children’s work from across the entire year – in reading and maths – is not taken into consideration in the test scores.

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Although only 48% of pupils achieved the expected standard in reading, writing and maths combined, the individual subject breakdown were as follows:

Reading – 72% of our pupils at expected standard (66% national)

Writing – 66% of our pupils at expected standard (74% national)

Maths – 69% of our pupils at expected standard (70% national)

 

Three of our pupils were one mark away from achieving the expected standard in their reading test.  Had they have scored one more mark each, this would have moved our reading, writing and maths combined figure to 59% – with the national average being 53%.  However, as a school, our expectations are far higher than this.

We have implemented several strategies to further improve our outcomes in key stage 2 tests:

•The Academy Development Plan 2016/17 focusses sharply on progress and attainment (Key Priority 4: Accelerate progress through KS2 across the curriculum; Key Priority 5: Increase level of attainment and progress of more able pupils across the curriculum)

•We have invested in a new assessment tool, which allows teachers – and the leadership team when monitoring progress – to clearly identify strengths and weaknesses in children’s knowledge and then plan learning opportunities to fill these gaps.

•We are now using termly standardised tests across Years 1 to 6.  These tests mirror the KS2 tests which children sit at the end of Year 6 and give us a clear picture of levels of progress across classes, groups an individual children.  They can also identify gaps to guide future teaching.

•Through the introduction of a non-teaching vice principal,  further developments in the quality of teaching and learning through focussed lesson studies, coaching and peer observations have been achieved.

 

Finally, I am keen to work with a group of parents to explore our current curriculum provision and how it prepares children both academically and for their future lives beyond Flitch Green.  This session will take place on Friday 3rd March 2017 at 2:00pm.

To be clear, this is not an opportunity to discuss individual issues or concerns, but to work alongside other parents, children, staff and governors to focus on our curriculum provision.

If you are interested in taking part, I’d like to invite you to express your interest by completing this short form.  Numbers may be limited as I am keen to ensure that we have a wide spread of parents representing Reception to year 6.

 

How will we cope…?

Back in the summer, Miss Cordon spent four weeks in Tanzania, working with other UK teachers to provide teacher training for untrained Tanzanian teachers.
Whilst there, she was astounded by the lack of resources available to teachers and children, some of whom did not even have paper or a pencil. In spite of these difficulties, teachers inspired their students (up to 120 in a class!) with songs, dances and peer-to-peer learning. Children learnt to count with collections of bottle tops they had brought in from home.
Here at Flitch Green we are extremely privileged with our resources – not only in comparison to many children abroad, but to others in the UK.
This Wednesday, however, children and teachers will be living for a day what is for so many the reality of daily life.
There will be no laptops, no iPads, no Apple TVs and limited paper and pencils.
Miss Cordon led a session with teachers last week to explore different ways of delivering great lesson with limited resources.  The session provided some good discussion around what makes really great teaching, and I’m looking forward to visiting lessons on Wednesday to take some photos create small sketches of what each class are getting up to!
Miss Cordon will be leading a whole school assembly on Tuesday to share her experiences and to set the challenge for the next day.  Here are a couple of photographs from her trip, which she will share – along with more – on Tuesday.
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Online Safety Workshop

On Monday 26th September, we will be holding a Internet Safety evening for all parents, starting at 6:30pm and yo can reserve your place here.

The evening will be led by Tim Rogers who is one of the leading authorities in the UK for the protection of children and is a former Detective for Warwickshire Police, responsible for the management of child sex offenders.

He graduated from The CEOP (Child Exploitation and Online Protection) Academy and gained a Postgraduate Certificate in The Forensic Psychology of Child Sex Offenders.  He has an unrivalled track record in the management and understanding of child sex offenders, using his knowledge of how they think and behave combined with his understanding of how children think and behave, to help us protect our children in the world they are growing up in today.

Tim is now a Senior Associate Consultant for the NSPCC and for Balance Education Consultancy, as well as an Associate Consultant for the Catholic Safeguarding Advisory Service and for Child Protection Training UK.  He also works for a number of NGOs (Non-Governmental Organisations) and charities in the field of safeguarding and child protection, investigating allegations and carrying out risk assessments as an expert witness.

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Pan Fried Chicken with Tomato Pesto

RootstoFood logo.jpgThe following recipe was created by Miss Pearce and the ‘Orange Team’.  If you make this at home, I’d love to see a photograph of it – feel free to Tweet @theflitchgreen – #orangeteam.

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Pan Fried Chicken in a Tomato Pesto Sauce

Served with Steamed Pasta and Wilted Greens

INGREDIENTS

Diced Chicken Fillet – 360g

Chunky Diced Fresh Tomatoes – 2

Fresh Basil – 10 leaves

Finely Chopped Fresh Garlic – 2 cloves

Fine Diced Spanish Onions – 1 large

Vegetable Oil – 50ml

Black Pepper – 2 pinches

Frozen Garden Peas – 80g

Pre Cooked Pasta Shells – 200g

Chopped Tomatoes Tinned – 400g

Fresh Spinach Leaves – 240g

Sliced Spring Onions – 60g

Sour Cream – 50 ml

Method

  1. Heat half the oil in a wok or saucepan, add the chicken and pan fry until golden brown and cooked thoroughly.
  2. In a separate wok or small saucepan heat the remainder of the oil and lightly cook the garlic being careful not to brown it, add the onions until they go soft, add the fresh chopped tomatoes and cook for 2 minutes, add the chopped tinned tomatoes and bring to a simmer, add the fresh basil leaves and turn off the heat.
  3. Place the spinach, peas and spring onion into a steamer for 5 minutes until the spinach turns dark green and wilted in appearance also place the cooked pasta into a separate tear of the steamer or cover in boiling water to heat.
  4. Add the cooked chicken to the sauce and stir until thoroughly combined.
  5. Place the hot pasta onto a warm plate, place the chicken and sauce onto the pasta and serve the wilted greens on the side. Spoon lightly the sour cream over your dish

 

Serves 4 portions