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Newsletter 19th April 2024

Newsletter 19th April 2024
April 19, 2024 Sandy Pike

Dear Parents and Carers,

Over the holiday period the school was far from closed, I would like to thank members of staff who came in to sort, clear and prepare for the forthcoming term. During the holiday period the early years and KS1 patio area was power washed and cleared, and the garden tidied. The School’s emergency lighting was tested and necessary maintenance and repairs carried out, drains were cleared, glass replaced and fire audit assessment carried out.

We start the new term welcoming two new members of staff – Mrs Sarah Toy to Oak Class, teaching on a Tuesday afternoon and Friday, and Mrs Maddy Sanda to Chestnut Class, teaching Monday to Wednesday, and who will take over the full time teaching of the class when Ms Gardiner goes on maternity leave.

It is with mixed feelings that I announce the departure of Mrs Smeeton from our teaching assistant body. Mrs Smeeton has worked at the school for 3 years and her enthusiasm, care and adaptability will certainly be missed. Our loss is however Stower Vale Pre-School’s gain, with Mrs Smeeton taking on the Manager role within the setting. We are therefore excited at the thought of working closely with her in the future, as we continue to develop and explore further opportunities with the Pre-School.


Please would all parents and carers contact the school office if their child/ren is/are NOT travelling by school bus for the afternoon journey. Many thanks for your help with this matter.



It was Well-being day again in school on Wednesday! The children all joined in with great enthusiasm and did a variety of activities. We thought about things to be grateful for, as a way of giving a boost to our positive feelings and increasing our Well-being as a consequence. In one class, the childr4en worked collaboratively annotating pictures of themselves, with pupils surprised by the how positively others thought of them. This led to pupils considering the positives about themselves.  In another class, we shared things that made us happy. Families came in at number one, closely followed by our friends and sport. We thought about other children who may have less to celebrate though. More on this next time from our School Councillors.

The differences between China and the UK

Bing very kindly visited all classes and spoke about the differences between China and the UK. Topics covered included: Landscape, housing, living areas, traditions, language, weddings and funerals food, education, clothing families. Everyone found it interesting to see how many differences there were. Particularly fascinating was that ‘fake crying’ was completely acceptable at a funeral, and that children have homework every night, which may mean they don’t go to bed until 10pm, as it has to be handed in the next day! My thanks to Bing for coming in and speaking to the children. She also very kindly gave each child a panda keyring to take home.

Lego Club

This week’s challenge was to create a puffer fish. The winning team on Monday was Amelie and Summer, with Max and Archie winning on Wednesday. Congratulations to all.

Amelie and Summer                                                                                                                                                       Max and Archie


Oak Class Trip to Feltham Farm

Please see class news for further information.

Sporting Events

We had a number of pupils took part in the Gillingham Family Sports handball tournament yesterday.  I was so impressed with the collaboration shown by all team members who represented the school so admirably.  My thanks to those parents who helped with transport. THANK YOU!



On Tuesday next week we will welcome Mel Bailey-Ryall from Dorset Cricket, who will lead engagement cricket sessions with all of our classes over the course of the day.


School Clubs

Breakfast and After School Club, staffed and run by Prime Sports in the school hall can be booked online at:  (Select Stower Provost Community School in the specific venue box and scroll down to Wraparound Care.

Breakfast Club runs daily 07.45 – 08.45, and After School Club from 15.30 – 17.00 daily. Please see the Prime Sports website for costs.

We also have a number of ‘hobby’ clubs being offered this term including:


Club Day Time For year groups Run by Cost
Lego Monday 15.20 – 16.30 Year 1/2/3/4/5 Miss Buxton £3.99 + VAT per session
KS1 Multi-Sports

(summer sports)

Tuesday 15.30 – 16.30 Years 1 & 2 Prime Sports FREE
Gardening Tuesday (starting 30th April) 15.20 – 16.30 4 spaces (sign up by emailing Mrs Pike) Mrs Berwick £6 for 4 sessions i.e. until half term
Lego Wednesday 15.20 – 16.30 Year 1/2/3/4/5 Miss Buxton £3.99 + VAT per session
Eco Club Friday 12.30 – 13.00 All Mrs B FREE
KS2 Multi-Sports

(summer sports)

Friday 15.30 – 16.30 Years 3/4/5/6 Prime Sports FREE


Signing up for Clubs

Sports Clubs are free for children to attend and subsidised out of the school’s PEPPSA (sports funding).

Please book any Prime Sports Clubs on:

KS1 –

KS2 –

Lego Club is booked through

Gardening Club with Mrs Berwick. There are 4 spaces available. Please sign up with Mrs Pike by emailing or dropping in.

Pyjamarama Day

Pyjamarama Day is to raise money for the Book Trust Campaign, which supports disadvantaged children giving access to books and other resources. Children are invited to wear a pair of pjs all day (other clothes can be worn underneath), and bring in their favourite book to share with the class. We ask children to bring in a £1 donation, which will go towards helping ensure all children can reap the life changing benefits of reading. Please see the attached letter for further information.


Please would all parents be vigilant, check their child’s hair and take appropriate action. The aim is to eradicate this problem in our school, it does however take a ‘team parental effort’ to make this possible, and I thank those parents who are fastidiously checking their children’s hair and understand their frustration when, week in week out, their children are re-infested!


Easy Fundraising

Just a reminder that if you are buying any forthcoming gifts or doing any online shopping, to please sign up and use the Easy Fundraising site for your searching and purchasing. This will generate money for the school, without costing you a penny! If you need a helping hand to sort this, then do please ask.

Class news


It is so nice to be back with Oak again. They have come back full of enthusiasm and enviable amounts of energy. We had a fantastic couple of trips – both as part of our cross-curriculum work entitled Sow, Grow and Farm. The children learnt about the process of rearing cows for beef production as well as looking at the carcasses of the frozen beef during their trip to the Udder Farm and shop at the end of last term. The children learned that the Blackmore Value has low quality soil but is good enough to grow grass!

We also visited a local organic cheese maker this week, at Feltham Farm, Templecombe. The children learnt about cheese making and its waste products and how the whey is then fed to the pigs, with their waste being used as compost on the farm’s vegetable beds.  Pupils had the opportunity to engage with a piglet, feed sheep, explore compost and look for life within the natural swimming pond. There was also the opportunity to just sit and relax with a book. The Nature’s Art book was a popular choice!

Highlights for the children included stroking the piglet, feeding the sheep and experiencing eating winter purslane (which is full of nutrients for a winter salad!).

Next week we are looking forward to cracking on with our Ancient Greeks topic.

(Mrs Clasby)



It has been lovely to start getting to know the children and working with them practically in the classroom.

The children have been introduced to their new project of Empires and Emperors, and did well, working collaboratively, to complete timelines linked to the Romans. With the Empires and Emperors project there are many links between subjects, particularly English group reading, where the children are enjoying the story of ‘The Goose Guards’ which is a tale linked to Roman times. In Science pupils have started to learn about how plants grow and its needs. The children have explored bulbs and researched the Latin names, as well as planting and potting up their own bulbs. Science links to Art, where children will be learning about beautiful botanicals (including weaving). Our class book in English writing is ‘The Gardener’.

Next week the children will continue with their natural loams and weaving. If children would like to gather their own natural materials for weaving on Tuesday, please feel free to gather over the week and bring items into school at the start of the week! -(Mrs Sanda)



This week, Beech class have been starting the Summer Term working so hard. They should all be really proud of themselves. In Maths, the children have started their fractions topic looking at equal and unequal parts as well as starting to identify halves. In English, the children have started looking at how to write instructions – with this they created their own bird feeders to write about.

Throughout this week, the children have been exploring their new topics and we are all looking forward to investigating this new learning together. (Mrs Whelan)



The children have returned to school with lots of lovely and exciting stories from their holidays. As an introduction to our science topic the children have been on a hunt for plants that grow from bulbs and plants that grow from seeds, and comparing them. We had a very special visitor in class this week to kick off our history topic all about our school’s history. Mrs Harris talked about her time at the school and the changes that have been made since she attended, the children had lots of interesting questions about the classrooms and swimming pool.

The EYFS children have been writing their own stories this week, all about the lion and mouse and their adventures after making friends on the rock (The Lion Inside by Rachel Bright). Whilst the Year 1 children have been learning and writing about Australian animals in Wombat Goes Walkabout by Michael Morpurgo. (Miss Buxton)


Diary dates  (dates in red have been added this week)


23rd April One session during the day per class Dorset Cricket engagement day
26th April 9.00 – 12.00 Hazel Class trip to Duncliffe Woods
6th – 10th May All Key Stage 1 testing week
9th May 15.30 – 18.00 Year 2/3 Gillingham Schools Multiskills Festival
10th May One session during the day per class Stour Provost Flower Club supporting with art-based activities linked to the Stour Provost Flower Festival.
10th – 16th May 1 week Phonic Screening week – year 1 pupils
13th – 16th May 4 days KS2 testing week
17th May All Day Pyjamarama Day
21st May 10.00 – 14.30 Year 3/4 Gillingham Schools mini tennis festival at Port Regis.
24th May Timings tbc Sports / Swimming Day
6th June Timings tbc Yrs 3 – 6 Gillingham School Athletics Competition at Yeovil
8th June Timings tbc Stour Provost Open Gardens – display at 2pm
19th June 13.45 M&M show and workshops
28th June 10.00 -12.00 Y2 Gillingham Schools Mini Olympics at St Gregory’s school
5th July Tbc School play dress rehearsal
8th July Tbc Jungle Book visiting performance
9th July 14.00 School play performance
10th July 9.00 – 12.00 Year 4/5 Gillingham Schools Swimming Gala at Riversmeet
10th July 16.00 School play performance
16th July 9.00 – 11.30 Year 6 girls PE transition project at Gillingham School (invitation only)
19th July 14.30 Leavers Assembly
19th July 15.20 Last day of school before the summer holiday
22nd July 2024   INSET DAY
23rd July 2024   INSET DAY


Best wishes,