Newsletter – December 2019
A message from our Principal, Richard Yates
As the first term is drawing to a close, I would like to take this opportunity to thank you for your support that has contributed much to the school's success. Ofsted's recognition that West Drayton is a good school has been a team effort, staff, parents and children. This now motivates us to achieve even greater outcomes.
In the last few weeks, the children have enjoyed many wonderful events: ‘Carols by Candlelight’, the EYFS performance, a festive lunch, a trip to the theatre, a pantomime in school and the Christmas Fair. Thank you to the parents and staff who have all worked incredibly hard during this busy season. In particular, I would like to thank Mrs Willey, Ms. Shearer, Ms. McSparron and Mrs Withers for organising the Christmas Fair.
Please do take care during the holiday period and enjoy your family time together. We wish you all a merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!
Miss Richards hosted our half termly Celebration Assembly where children were recognised for their remarkable efforts and contributions.
Top ‘Mathletes’ this half term:
Y1 Abhiram 42,463 points
Y2 Rishab 38,516 points
Y3 Srijal 52,910 points
Y4 Karthik 95,714 points
Y5 Karthi 69,884 points
Y6 Rocco 23,514 points
Top Classes: KS1: 1C with 271,498 points & KS2: 4J with 364,118 points
Children in KS1 were awarded a certificate for making the most progress with their reading.
Well done to Paulo, Abdiheyman & Kerani
Classes with the top attendance over this half term were:
1st: 4M with 97.10%
2nd: 6F with 96.39%
3rd: 5B with 96.11%
4M have earned a non uniform day and movie/activities afternoon on Friday 10th January.
Next term, we will be awarding non uniform days weekly to the class with the best attendance.
Children’s engagement with our Accelerated Reader scheme has been phenomenal and succeeding in getting children to read more to earn awards.
Each time a child achieves 100% in a quiz after reading a book, as well as getting their name on a star for our ‘wall of fame’, they are entered into a raffle. The raffle is drawn each half term and there were LOTS of entries this time.
This half term, the lucky winner was Brandon from 4J who received a £10 Amazon book voucher.
Top Quizzers who scored 100% the most amount of times in each class (listed in year groups)
Y3: Felicia, Esther & Aaron
Y4: Advaith, Darsh & Dewa
Y5: Hila , Sean, Ashvika & Amrollah
Y6: Rehaan, Ahyan, Zamiul & Mushtaq
Between them, they completed 256 quizzes! The children have earned a cookie decorating activity next term.
Rehaan is pictured left receiving a special certificate from Miss Richards for scoring 100% in the highest amount of quizzes across the whole school; 39 in total!
Miss Richards also worked out the classes with the highest average percentage score for quizzes completed and 3L came out on top with 86.9%. They received a tub of chocolates to share between them.
Mad Science Assembly
Cosmic Chloe treated us to a super science assembly around the ‘states of matter’. Chloe demonstrated the features and forces of gas, liquid and solids through a variety of experiments with some special lab assistants selected from the audience. It really was quite fascinating and the children thoroughly enjoyed the ‘lesson’!
1c Class Assembly
Class assemblies contribute to the development of children’s communication, confidence and expression. The teachers work hard to ensure every child has a part to play and that the class works together as a team.
Well done to 1C for their interpretation of our four seasons and ending on a seasonal note with a performance of ‘We Wish you a Merry Christmas’, sang with ‘Makaton’ actions.
As we approach the close of the Autumn term, events and activities in school turn to Christmas and we have had much festive fun!
* Mrs Abdullaj held her ‘Festive Story Time’ in the library for Reception children where they enjoyed the story of ‘The Littlest Reindeer’;
* We had the Christmas Fair superbly organised by our PTA and gratefully supported by the Teachers;
* To help raise funds we ran a ‘Design a Christmas Jumper’ competition and had in excess of 200 entries!;
* Pabulum cooked an amazing Christmas lunch . The children were given crackers to pull and there was a real party atmosphere in the hall with Christmas music playing;
* All of the children got to experience a traditional pantomime. A theatre company came into school to perform ‘Beauty & the Beast‘ to Nursery, Reception and years 1 & 2; Years 3 to 6 were taken to The Beck theatre to see ‘Sleeping Beauty’
* Reception children performed their ‘Sparkle & Shine’ show to parents and guests;
* And finally, we supported ‘Save the Children’ charity taking part in the Christmas Jumper Day initiative which is now in its 7th year.
Festive Story Time by Mrs Abdullaj, Librarian
It’s always a delight to welcome families with their children into our beautiful school library. To celebrate the forthcoming festive season, we held two after school Christmas story time events on the 4th and 5th December for the children from Reception and their families.
It was fantastic to meet so many parents and introduce them to the school library and their children’s weekly class library routines.
It wasn’t long before our library was filled with the joyful voices of exuberant children excitedly showing their parents where they choose their library books. It was a total joy to then watch parent and child cosily settle down and to see them head-to-head, totally immersed in the pleasure of sharing a book together.
As the wintery afternoon darkened, the children and their parents enthusiastically enjoyed our special, Christmas story - “The Littlest Reindeer” by Moira Butterfield. The atmosphere in the library felt full of seasonal joy as this beautifully illustrated story about Christmas Eve unfolded and magically captivated everyone.
Finally, to round off our afternoon the children treated their proud parents to a rousing rendition of their favourite festive songs.
Thank you to all who attended both events and I look forward to welcoming more families to our next Story time events.
Southlands Arts Centre Visit
KS1 enjoyed going to the Southlands Arts Centre to have a look at their work which is being displayed there. Centred around the theme of conservation, Year 2 each wrote a pledge on a leaf about how they would help to save the environment in the future and these pledges are now displayed outside the centre for everyone to see. They were also able to see other contributions to the project from the West Drayton Community
Reception’s chance to Sparkle & Shine!
On Wednesday 11th and Friday 13th December, Reception performed our Sparkle and Shine Celebration. We were so happy to have our very own show, all about the celebrations we have learnt about this term. We talked about Diwali, Bonfire Night, Thanksgiving and Christmas, as well as mentioning the celebrations coming up next year, such as Chinese New Year and Eid.
We sang songs about Diwa lamps, stars and sparkly lights in the sky. Then we went on a Santa hunt to see if we could find Santa. After passing through sparkly lights, snowstorms and herds of reindeer, we found a dark cave. It wasn't Santa inside though; it was a polar bear!
Fortunately we escaped safely and finished our show by singing Jingle Bells and We Wish You A Merry Christmas.
We were so happy to see so many of our families watching our show. We loved the community spirit, as we celebrated all the different things we believe.
Carols by Candlelight
The candlelight was provided by Y6 who made their own lanterns in their DT lessons, which were illuminated with battery operated tea lights. The effect was quite magical but unfortunately the photos were too dark to share!
The Choir led the children in the carols including Away in a Manger, Silent Night and O Little Town of Bethlehem. There were also readings celebrating the Christmas story.
Nursery’s Festive Stay & Play
The nursery held a festive Stay and Play session for parents this week and it was a wonderful way to celebrate the end of their first term at school.
The nursery was set up with a range of activities inside and out and parents seemed just as excited as the children to take part in each activity!
It was wonderful to see parents engaging with their children, who demonstrated their learning throughout the session. They could listen and follow instructions, work independently, share and take turns and many were excited to introduce their parents to their new friends.
To end the session the children delighted parents with some festive songs and their confidence shone through. They had worked so hard to learn new songs and actions and the look of pride on their faces when their parents applauded was priceless. The perfect way to end the term.
On the week beginning 18th November, we took part in the Mathletics Numeracy Challenge.
Every child, from Year 1 to Year 6 had to log in and take part in as many mathletics activities as possible.
Out of 530 schools, West Drayton Academy came 86th! This was a great achievement. The average amount of points per child was 1312.
We are now running a competition every half term to see which KS1 and KS2 class can get the most points. The winning class will receive a box of chocolates to share.
This half term, the winning class in KS1 was 1C and the winning class in KS2 was 4J.
Well done to both classes!
As part of their geography topic, ‘Poverty’, Year 5 were extremely lucky to have a STIXX workshop. The challenge was to build a shelter out of newspapers, big enough for 6 people to sit in. The children worked very hard in the limited time they had and worked well within their teams. They all thoroughly enjoyed getting involved, making the rods out of the newspapers with the specially designed STIXX machine then designing and constructing the shelters. Engineering is cool!
To raise awareness and funds to tackle poverty in Ghana, Year 5 held a Bake Sale as part of the ‘Look at our Learning’ event. Contributions from the cake sale totalled an impressive £300! Miss Brewer’s sister is taking part in a volunteer programme and will be travelling to Ghana to do medical outreach work; the funds raised will go towards purchases of supplies and equipment.