☰ New beginnings

New beginnings

Posted on: September 7th 2010

The new term is just about on us now. I’ve spent a fair bit of time in the school over the break and managed to get lots done. I saw quite a few teachers in between their various travels. I’m not envious! Last week really saw the school in operation with most people in. There is a lot to do ahead of a new academic year; getting classrooms ready, but more importantly ensuring all our timetables, curriculum plans and assessment strategies are in place. Teachers in parallel year groups plan everything together to make sure we have consistency across the year group too.

These past two days has involved a lot of training. All our staff must attend school two days before term to take part in the various training programmes we run. Yesterday was set aside for assessment strategies within science – we really are very rigorous about tracking our pupils’ progress. Today we had a session on guided reading. Guided reading is about knowing clearly where are pupils strengths and weaknesses are and then putting a personalised programme in place for them. We also had a full staff meeting today covering things ranging from our provision for gifted and talented children through to making sure we all know what we’re doing on Games days. At the end I did a short PowerPoint on our strategy and focus for the year. I hope it went well.

We had a good Senior Management Team meeting yesterday. We do get a lot achieved in these meetings. We discussed various staffing scenarios as the year develops. We also had a good conversation on how we approach extended writing work at school. We want to try some new and innovative things out this year and I’m confident the children will really enjoy it.

The school itself looks great. We had the builders in for around 6 weeks doing various maintenance and repair jobs. I must say I was slightly nervous this morning with all their tools and mess everywhere, but sitting here this evening it does look very inviting for our pupils.

I’m looking forward to seeing everyone tomorrow. I like the first day back; our children are so excited and it really is an uplifting experience. I’ve given a bit of thought to the assemblies I want to take on the first day back. I think for our older pupils I’m going to give some focus to the 70 year anniversary of the Blitz. I want to discuss being a child in London seven decades ago. I want our pupils to understand that they have the most fabulous opportunity – denied to many before them – and they must grab it. Carpe Diem, as I always say. For our younger pupils I’m going to play a really nice story from You Tube on The Giving Tree. Those of you who know the story will remember just how wonderful and moving it is.

Wish me luck!

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