We would like to share with you a new initiative we started last term that we have called “Reading Buddies”. At least twice a term children from different year groups pair up and read stories to each other. It has been lovely watching children from across the school interact together and support each other whilst enjoying new stories. The children love it and are relishing the opportunity to build relationships with other members of our Longwell Green Family.
The children have been having enjoying using the Playpod at lunchtimes. The Playpod is a big shed that holds a range of scrap materials such as cardboard tubes, tyres, crates, foam blocks, netting etc for the children to play with. This allows children to have fun using various resources in a creative and imaginative way. It also encourages team-work, risk-taking, sharing and problem-solving.
Thank you to everyone who dressed in red last Friday for Comic Relief; we raised £227.11. Our School Council presented the Friday assembly to let the whole school know how our collection can help.
Lawrence Prestidge, children’s author
On Tuesday, Longwell Green was lucky enough to welcome Lawrence Prestidge, a children’s author, to the school!
Lawrence shared his most recent book with the children ‘Can such things be’?’ Everyone was in fits of laughter as he read a story all about bird poo! We were also lucky enough to hear a chapter from ‘Terror at the Sweet Shop’, which, by many of the children’s faces, inspired them to want to write themselves.
The children then had the fantastic opportunity to buy a book and have it signed by Lawrence himself!
Thank you to all the parents who supported this wonderful event.
World Book Day and Book @Bedtime
Yesterday was a fantastic day in school! I very much enjoyed seeing the school come alive with all the weird and wonderful creatures and people that start life as a tiny idea in an author’s head and once published, become some of the characters that children and adults across the world dream to meet and be like! It always amuses everyone walking through the corridors of Longwell Green on World Book Day and passing characters from Harry Potter, princesses, super heroes, heroes and heroines, dragons and ballerinas! Mr Brown even joined in and came to school with a moustache and dressing gown disguised as …Mr Brown! Mr Brown from Paddington that is!
There are some people who roll their eyes at the suggestion of World Book Day being a special celebrated day in schools – of course we should encourage our children to enjoy reading every day but it’s important to remember the reason World Book Day started – to celebrate authors, illustrators, books and (most importantly) it’s a celebration of reading! It’s not about who has the best costume but how much enjoyment the children get engaging with texts and stories to learn about the world they live in. It’s about finding a book you love that takes you to another place or makes you understand and think about a situation or person differently.
At 5 o’clock, the children were all invited back into school in their pyjamas with mugs in hand for a cheeky hot chocolate to cuddle whilst snuggling down and listening to a story read by adults in school. A fantastic time was had by all (I wish I could wear pyjamas more often in school). A huge thank you needs to be mentioned, as ever, to the Friends of Longwell Green – a relatively small team of people who always work tirelessly behind the scene too make magical moments happen at our school so thank you for giving your time to prepare and serve hot chocolate for the children. It’s the little things in life that make a big difference so thank you!
Liz Kessler, a New York Times best-selling author
On Monday, Longwell Green was lucky enough to welcome Liz Kessler, a New York Times best-selling author, to the school!
Liz shared with the children her first ever-published piece of work from when she was 9 years old! The look of inspiration on many of our children’s faces was wonderful to see.
Having had her first novel published in 2003, ‘The Tail of Emily Windsnap’, Liz was able to talk to the children about her 15-year journey of being a writer. We were even let into the secret of where the name Emily Windsnap came from!
The children then had the fantastic opportunity to buy a book and have it signed by Liz herself! Further to all of this excitement, Liz officially opened our library to be used by the children, in particular our ‘Starbooks’ area. Mrs Balch is currently running a book club for children in Year 1 and 2 is hoping to roll this out across the school soon.
Thank you to all the parents who supported this wonderful event, we are hoping to arrange something specifically for KS1 children soon.
Monday 17th September 2018 was the very first Forest School Session at Longwell Green School.
Forest School is an inspirational long term process where all learners have a regular opportunity to achieve and develop confidence and self-esteem through child led, holistic, hands on experiences in a natural environment using natural things. Forest School practitioners only offer opportunities, hints and supported risks to the environment and themselves.
We at Longwell Green School are very pleased to now be able to offer our children Forest School sessions. We are having 4,1 hour sessions per week and we hope that all children will get the opportunity to spend some time in the forest. The children will help maintain the forest area, plant bee and butter-fly gardens and observe the creatures in the forest. Once the Forest School Leader completes her training the children will also access real tools and light fires under close supervision.
Our first topic was water tight shelter building, and all shelters were tested once complete. Some shelters were for the Rangers, others for hedgehogs, bees, mice etc.
The children also had the chance to do their own risk assessments and were fantastic at spotting possible hazards. They have shown great team spirit and I have watched them form their own, very different teams on a couple of occasions and shown some amazing collaboration.
We had a reflection the following day and these are some of the comments made:
D…………. Best day ever!
G…………… I liked driving around in the tyre, sad because I wanted to get a little wet!
F…………. stressful, but when it was done it was amazing, you have to push yourself!
A……. 1-3 it was ∞
J…… Fun, but the wind was annoying!
E………… Good, but I got wet!
N………. We didn’t get wet because we worked together as a team, otherwise
Early years had a Monday at Forest School and were looking for signs of autumn, we found lots! We talked about what colours the leaves might be and why the leaves change colour and fall. We talked about the pineapples (pinecones) we found under the trees and what was inside them (seeds). The children loved holding the conkers and we talked about the job that trees do in our forest and why we need to be kind to them and sometimes give them a hug!
Lunch club have been having fun in the forest too and last week during the strong winds we tested their shelter building skills. We spent the whole lunch time in the forest adapting our shelter to ensure we could stay dry. With lots of collaboration and team work, our shelter DID successfully kept us dry.