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Newsletter 8th December 2023

Newsletter 8th December 2023
December 11, 2023 Sandy Pike

Dear Parents and Carers,

Another packed newsletter, after a very busy week in school!



This week saw all our children involved in the Nativity. I was so proud of the children for their singing support and/or their involvement on stage.

Sporting Events

We had a number of pupils taking part in two Gillingham Family Sports events this week – football and cross country. All teams worked collaboratively and represented our school extremely well. My thanks to Mrs Smeeton and Mrs Stockley for supervising the teams, and to those parents who helped with transport. THANK YOU!

Wreath Making

Wreath Making was again popular this week, with a variety of styles being created from the same foliage. Many thanks to Friends for organising the two excellent evenings.


I am afraid nits are still around, particularly in our younger classes of Hazel and Beech. Please would all parents be vigilant, check their child’s hair and take appropriate action. The aim is to reduce and then eradicate this problem in our school. However it takes a ‘team parental effort’ to make this possible.


Christmas Disco – Thursday 14th December – 15.30 – 17.00.

The Friends will be running a Christmas Disco for all school pupils on Thursday 14th December.  Hazel and Beech Class children will have their disco 15.30 – 16.15 followed by refreshments and Christmas based art activities until 17.00. Parents of course may collect from 16.15 if they prefer.

Chestnut and Oak pupils will have classroom based Christmas activities and a refreshment between 15.30 – 16.15, followed with their disco 16.15 – 17.00.

Children are welcome to bring in a change of clothes. At the end of the school day pupils will change and then enjoy the disco fun! Ticket cost £2 a child.

Parents are most welcome to come to the hall and help supervise if they wish. Should anyone wish to volunteer their services, please contact Sam Wattridge.


Volunteer Painters

Now the books in the library have been date checked, we are looking to redecorate. If there are any volunteers who would be willing to help Miss Buxton paint the library shelves on Saturday 16th December between 10 – 12, she would love to hear from you. She will provide cake and refreshments as an enticement!

Winter Reading Challenge

It’s back! Spark a love of reading even in the most reluctant reader with the free online Winter Mini Challenge. Unlock rewards for reading and find fun activities on our dedicated children’s website. The Winter Mini Challenge is an online, bitesize version of The Reading Agency’s annual Summer Reading Challenge. This summer, they teamed up with the Youth Sport Trust and public libraries to bring you Ready, Set, Read! – a Summer Reading Challenge that empowered hundreds of thousands of young people to read and play, keeping minds and bodies active over the summer break.

Following the success of Ready, Set, Read! The Reading Agency are delighted to extend the theme

into the Winter Mini Challenge. With the holidays approaching, now is the time to encourage families

to discover the joy of reading or to build on good reading habits!

Tackle the holiday reading ‘dip’ and join in at from 1 December 2023.

More information on the Challenge can be found on the website.

Please would interested children collect a reading record from the office.

Amazon Wish List

I would like to thanks those parents who have donated a number of books from our Amazon Wish List. They have been very gratefully received – THANK YOU!

Should other parents wish to purchase a book(s) from our Amazon Wishlist please follow the link below:

To purchase from the list:

  1. a) Browse the List.
  2. b) From the list page or the product detail page, select Add to Basket.

Note: When you order, the item will be moved to the purchased section of the recipient’s list. You can enter a gift message and request gift wrap.

  1. c) Continue shopping or proceed to checkout.
  2. d) To complete your order, follow the on-screen instructions.

No matter how you choose to donate a book, a sticker will be placed in each and every book donated, for the children to acknowledge and appreciate where the book has come from.

Easy Fundraising

Just a reminder that if you are buying gifts this Christmas 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!


Breakfast Club and After School Club Costs

There will be a 10% increase to Breakfast and After School Clubs costs from January 2024. This is due to Prime Sports incurring increased VAT costs themselves. The company are absorbing a proportion of the increase themselves in an attempt to remain reasonably priced for parents.

After School Sports Clubs

Next week will be the last week for after school sports clubs, i.e. in the last week of term there will be NO After School Sports Clubs running.

Next term the following sports clubs will run:

Monday:  KS2 Handball (Chestnut and Oak classes)

Tuesday:  KS1 Handball (Hazel and Beech classes)

Friday:     KS2 Hockey (Chestnut and Oak classes)

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

New Club Idea

Thank you to the two parents who have responded with regard to the Lego Club possibility. If there are any other keen Lego constructors out there who would enjoy this club, please let me know.

As per last week’s newsletter – One possible club for next term is a ‘Kids with Bricks’ club. This possible club would run after school at a cost of £3.99 + VAT per child per session. The club would be supervised by a member of our staff, but run by MiCreation, who set the scheme of work and provide weekly videos to kick start the children’s imagination.  The company provides the resources. If your child would be interested in this club, do please let me know as I am keen to gauge interest.

Class news


This week, we have been immersed in fractions as we work through the concrete, pictorial and abstract phases of learning to deepen our understanding of the concept of fractions. In English we have started writing our biography of Katherine Johnson by taking notes. In RE, we have done an assessment and reflected on our learning about Buddhism. Next week, we are looking forward to watching our school film and having a good time at the disco. In assembly, we have been looking at our Commonwealth Characters again – in particular, how we can help to make our school a more well-being centered institution by self-care, hope and optimism and self-worth. (Mrs Clasby)


This week, the class have consolidated their knowledge of French animals by practising saying that they are different animals in French. The pupils have come to the end of their science topic and completed their knowledge review. The children have learned about non-chronological reports and have begun to write one as a class about the Stone Age. Next week, the class will be writing their own reports about the Iron Age and Bronze Age.


This week, Beech class have been finishing off their letters to the pens and writing them up in best. The children have worked really hard over this English topic and they should all be very proud of the amount of work they have been able to produce. In maths, the children have finished looking at shape and have started to go back over this term’s learning to make sure they are confident with their maths ready to start a fresh topic next term.

Beech class have done a fantastic job with their nativity productions this week. I can imagine they are very tired from all the hard work they have put in to the Nativity to be able to put on such brilliant performances.


This week the children have been learning about our own settlement of Stour Provost, this has entailed looking at the key features around us, and what features are missing, such as offices and factories. In History the children have looked at a maps from 1950 and present day, and have talked about the differences and why these differences may have occurred.  In Science pupils have been comparing materials using Venn Diagrams and talking about the uses of those materials.

FS2 (Reception) have been discussing ways of making people feel welcome and they have all created a friendship token, so that if a new child starts, the children know how to welcome the new child.

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


13th Dec 12.05 – 12.30 Local Food Links Christmas Lunch in school
14th Dec 15.30 – 17.00 Christmas Disco

Hazel & Beech Classes:       15.30 – 16.15 Disco

16.15 – 17.00 Class activities

Chestnut and Oak Classes: 15.30 – 16.15 Class activities

16.15 – 17.00 Disco

2nd Jan   INSET DAY
3rd Jan 08.40 Spring Term starts
22nd July 2024   INSET DAY
23rd July 2024   INSET DAY


Best wishes,

Ailsa Boardman-Hirst