Not long to go now, until the start of the new term.
Please read the documents below, that set out details and information about the full opening of Bowmansgreen next week.
We are looking forward to fully re-opening and welcoming back all pupils next month.
Wednesday September 2nd – INSET day (School closed to pupils)
All pupils return to school on Thursday 3rd September, 2020
Please ensure that you are aware of the timings of your child’s school day, for the autumn term.
|EYFS and Y2||Y1||Y3 and Y4||Y5 and Y6|
Around 180 pupils safely returned to school before the end of last term. We put in place a range of effective protective measures, for pupils and staff, to reduce the risk of transmission of coronavirus and to ensure that the pupils who returned were able to experience as normal and full a school experience as was safe, practical and permitted according to government guidelines.
In September, we will be maintaining many of the control measures and procedures that were put in place last term.
These include staggered start and finish times – please see new times above.
In September, only pupils will be able to use the back gate to access the school site. A member of staff will greet pupils on the path to ensure that they enter the school site safely. Pupils must say goodbye to other family members before they reach the member of staff on the path and then walk themselves into school. We will ensure that, where necessary, pupils are directed or accompanied to their classrooms until they are familiar with the routine. This measure is to reduce congestion on site and around the school gates and to ensure a one way system at the back gate. These arrangements worked really well last term and are necessary to help minimise the number of contacts that pupils and staff have.
If you would prefer to walk your child onto the playground, then you must use the front gate to enter and exit the site, where a one way system is also in place, to minimise face-to-face contact.
Miss Chilton has some important information for our Bowmansgreen Maths Rockstars. Find out who are the true legends, taking their places on the Rock Stars leaderboard. Game on, Mr Gowler!
Unfortunately, some of our families have now been directly affected by coronavirus and are coping with loved ones being ill or have lost family members during this pandemic. Staff and governors at Bowmansgreen wish you all the very best and have you in our thoughts during this difficult time. If any parents are worried about the wellbeing or welfare of their children whilst they are not attending school, due to the impact of living through this pandemic, please let me know via the school office – there may be additional support that we can provide or signpost to parents. Please read this letter for parents relating to how school is continuing to follow government guidance particularly relating to confirmed cases within our school community. There are lots of published resources that help children to understand the significance and impact of coronavirus, pitched at an age-appropriate level as well as guidance for parents to support their own and their family’s wellbeing during this pandemic, including the following: Children’s Commissioner’s Guide to Coronavirus
Public Health England – guidance on mental health and wellbeing
I am sure you are aware that a government announcement is planned for Sunday evening about the easing of lockdown measures. There is lots of speculation that it will refer to the ‘re-opening’ of schools – when and how this will happen. Schools have not received any additional information about this announcement or an indication of any changes to the temporary school ‘closures.’ Once we know what the DfE expectations are and have a timeline of key dates, we will work closely with the local authority to ensure that we are prepared and ready to fulfil those expectations. We are likely to find out this information at the same time as the rest of the school community which may or may not be on Sunday. Fingers crossed!
The Duchess of Cambridge has launched a photography project with the National Portrait Gallery with the aim of building a collection of pictures reflecting how the country is coping under COVID-19. The Hold Still project is free for participants to submit photographic portraits and open to all ages and abilities. Find out more.
Mr Sanders and Miss Bliss have been busy preparing PE activities and resources that families might find particularly useful during the lockdown. Look out for these resources on the PE page of our school website from next week. (Learning – Our curriculum – PE and Sport).
Today is Victory in Europe (VE) day. The Easter Bank Holiday was moved to today, to allow for a range of celebrations to take place around the country to commemorate the 75th anniversary of VE Day. Many planned celebrations have unfortunately had to be cancelled but a series of VE day events will still go ahead for families to experience, from home. There are also plenty of resources for children, including from BBC Teach so that children can learn about this significant date in European history.
New distance teaching and learning resources will be available on the school website, from Monday.
Take care of yourselves.
I hope that everyone is finding the distance learning resources easy to access and helpful for your children. New lessons will be available from Monday. The previous week’s lessons will remain on the website for you to access.
Please encourage your children to complete work in the school exercise books that they brought home – the writing book for any English work, the home learning book for maths. If you need any more books, please let the school office know.
Today, Captain Tom Moore celebrates his 100th birthday. Discuss this remarkable man and his amazing life with your children, through these home learning resources (poster, information resource and questions/challenges) from Picture News.
Captain Tom has now raised over £30 million for the NHS. As we all celebrate Captain Tom’s birthday and his incredible fundraising, I am sure that tonight, at 8pm he will be taking time out of his own celebrations to say thank you to our NHS heroes.
Don’t forget to join in by clapping, banging your pots and pans and cheering or if you have super musical talents…. play your drums for the NHS!
From Monday, daily lessons are available for your child, accessible via the school website. Please read today’s letter that provides updated information about these resources.
Thank you to all those who have completed our Distance Learning survey. Please take part, if you haven’t already, as it provides important information to help us deliver our distance learning effectively. The survey closes on Monday morning.
The number of children attending Urgent Care and Emergency Departments across the country has dropped. Local authorities recognise that families are understandably concerned about taking their children to health settings at this time but this has resulted in some children presenting late and as a consequence, being very poorly. The East & North Herts and West Herts Trust have produced guidance for parents and carers for when a child is unwell or injured, during this pandemic.
Teachers have already been very impressed with the quality of work that pupils have been producing at home. Miss Ottley would like to say a huge ‘well done’ to all of the children who have been busy practising their reading this week. Bowmansgreen pupils have read over 125,198 words in Reading Pro Library and spent 43 hours doing so! That was only is the first 3 days so ‘great work’ everyone who has been reading! Miss Chilton is really pleased to see so many pupils have been practising their number facts and times tables. I think she might even have set some pupils a challenge…. against her! Children, keep up the super effort with your reading and maths – the more practice you do, the more confident you will become!
There have been a few issues logging into some of the resources. Please refer back to the initial information and instruction letters and the details for logging in – the usernames and passwords must be entered accurately, not using spaces unless specified. Let the school office know if you continue to have problems accessing any of the resources.
Miss Kay would like to shout out a special mention to our fantastic children in Reception who have been putting a big smile on her face with their amazing home learning. Miss Kay has been blown away with the quality and variety, including mini beast hunts, sound races, drumming and ‘posh’ robot phonics! Keep it up Reception – we are all very proud of you!
Miss Connolly is our star baker this week with her recipe for Banana Oat Cookies.
Have you got what it takes to do the football cupid shuffle? Miss Hancock has!
Please read the most recent letter sent to parents and carers regarding distance learning.
To help keep your children busy and learning this week, we have activities and resources available on your child’s year group page, on the school website. Please check these pages regularly for new content. We will notify parents when new lessons are added.
Clink on the links below to go straight to your child’s year group page for newly published content, including planning to support phonics (EYFS and Y1) and reading (Y2 – Y6).
To help support your child’s learning in maths, our maths calculation policy sets out the progression in written calculations for each year group. This is also available on the maths page of our website.
Whilst we will be publishing new lesson content weekly and providing accompanying resources, we will not be marking or following up on individual lessons with individual parents. The teaching and learning resources are to help support you and your child during this period of school closure and are there for you to use as much as is helpful and practical. There is certainly no expectation for lessons and activities to be completed on set days or within set time frames.
I hope everyone is safe and well.
Today was officially the last day of the spring term. It certainly hasn’t felt that way to staff and I’m sure it hasn’t to parents and carers at home!
The school closure has meant that many trips, events and activities planned for this half of the spring and next summer term, have had to be cancelled or postponed. This includes our family consultation meetings – which would have taken place last week – and our latest curriculum evening, which would have been yesterday. Teachers have prepared short summary reports, giving key information about your child’s achievement, progress and next steps. You will receive these in the post, next week.
I have received a request for families from the school community to be part of a photographic project, creating an Arc of Hope which will be included in this year’s Young Artists’ Summer Show at the Royal Academy of Arts. If you are interested in taking part, the deadline is 10th April.
The BBC Sounds website has a wide range of audio content suitable for children of all ages and interests, available to listen for free.
Don’t forget to take a look at the English and Maths pages on our school website for more resources to keep your child busy during the Easter holiday and school closure. Listen to Mr Wilson read My Father is a Polar Bear; read our shared stories from World Book Day; and learn how to do short division!
If your child enjoys Harry Potter, learning through a Harry Potter inspired curriculum will motivate and interest them.
Online educational publisher Twinkl is providing free access to some resources during the school closures. The site is regularly updated and includes age and year-group specific curriculum activities, book readings, interactive games and live lessons.
White Rose Maths is also helping parents to support their children’s learning at home by publishing weekly maths lessons and providing access to online textbooks.
Oxford Owl has published a free eBook collection.
The Book Trust has also launched a website to help keep children busy and engaged with books during school closures. BookTrust Home Time contains free books, videos, games, recipes, competitions, activity sheets and live drawalongs, created by children’s authors and illustrators.
I hope that everyone is safe and well as we move into week two of the school closures.
It is great to hear that lots of families are finding ways to keep in touch with each other and bring their children (and some staff!) together using a range of web and video conferencing apps and programmes. Connectivity with friends and family is really important for our mental and emotional health and well-being but it has suddenly become more difficult to maintain.
The government has published guidance for parents and carers about supporting children’s mental health and wellbeing during the coronavirus pandemic. It contains some useful advice and information to support families during what could be a very difficult time of change and isolation, including about how to support your own well-being; behaviours and reactions to look out for in your children; and where to get further support if you are worried about your child. There are also lots of websites to support families, including Family Lives and Time to Change.
It is always a good time to remind pupils about staying safe online, especially during this extensive period of school closure. Thinkuknow have advice, information and resources to help families keep each other safe in the online world, including their new home learning packs.
Staff have been finding and preparing resources to keep your children busy and learning at home.
Create some 3D pictures called agamographs, like Miss Chilton and Nathandria and be inspired by Vincent van Gogh’s sunflowers, like Miss Allen, Nathandria and Verity. See what the finished art work looks like: day and night and rainbow agamographs.
If you are a fan of Disney films, Miss Ottley has a curriculum for you!
We have also included the links to some popular and recommended sites that families might enjoy.
Phonics Play for EYFS and KS1
Listen to poems and stories read by Michael Rosen
City Youth FC have developed a ‘train at home program’ to help develop new and existing ball skills
Something to interest our young engineers and scientists
Life as we know it seems to be rapidly changing! Who would have thought at the beginning of the school year, that six months later, we would be encouraged not to visit museums, cinemas or restaurants; told not to spend time with our friends and family; and that toilet paper would be such a sought after treasure! And now we have the closure of schools across the country.
But here we are…
Today is the strangest of days! During celebration assembly, I did not know whether to laugh, cry, say ‘goodbye’ or say ‘see you Monday.’ All slightly surreal. As usual, however, the best of Bowmansgreen was standing tall and proud at the front (and in the case of Y6, at the back!) of the hall, being celebrated as the fantastic children they are.
We are currently collating the information about our critical key worker parents so that we can organise our provision from next week. Later this afternoon, we will be contacting the families of all pupils who will be able to attend school from next week. It is all a bit of a minefield, with new information and guidance being delivered to schools, at very short notice. Please bear with us so that we can gather the information we need and get these decisions right. We appreciate your patience and understanding.
In the midst of the turbulence, we have some very happy school news to share. Miss Golding is expecting a baby later this summer! She is currently working from home, supporting staff from afar, in preparation for our school closure later today. Mrs De’ath is also expecting a baby next term and will start her maternity leave very shortly. I know that you will wish them both well for the remainder of their pregnancies and look forward to seeing them again in the not too distant future, with their new additions.
Sadly, we also have a couple of goodbyes to announce. Miss Hicks will be leaving us this term, after five years of teaching at Bowmansgreen. It has been a difficult decision for Miss Hicks to leave the school that she attended as a child and where she has so many fond memories. Miss Minardi will also be leaving us this term, in her role as reception teacher and EYFS Leader. Both Miss Hicks and Miss Minardi are leaving Bowmansgreen to work closer to home and in the best interests of their families. I would like to thank them both for their hard work and commitment to the children of Bowmansgreen and I know that you will join me in wishing them much luck and happiness for the future.
School is very much still in operation after today – until we are told otherwise – and we will ensure that we maintain steady communication with you, to support you and your children during the next few weeks and months. We will be sending home additional curriculum activities and resources with your children today – packs are ready to collect from the school office if your child is not at school today. The year group pages on our school website will be developed to publish curriculum content and resources to continue to support your child’s education and wellbeing whilst they are at home. We will also, of course, keep you fully up to date with relevant news and information as we receive it.
The FOBS Mothers’ Day sale is currently in full swing in the school hall and I have already seen some very proud children waving their secret gifts excitedly through my door. Thank you to Nicola for organising this event which has brought some school normality to a very unusual day.
What has remained a constant throughout these last couple of weeks, is how fantastic our school community is. Everyone has pulled together to react quickly and positively to such significant change. Pupils continue to be our best asset, adapting to changes in routine and showing resilience, thought and care for each other. They have amazed me! My poor staff have suffered me moving them into different classes and year groups, changing their timetables and asking them to magic planning and resources out of thin air! I could not wish for a more hard working, positive, caring staff to help me look after the pupils of Bowmansgreen. School governors and parents have offered help, kind words of support and messages of appreciation – thank you everyone. I am immensely proud of our school community.
Thank you to Mrs Hanly for taking the beautiful photo (yes, it is genuine!) of the rainbow over Bowmansgreen. A perfectly fitting photo for today!
Take care of yourselves.
Please read the letter below reflecting the latest advice and information for schools from Hertfordshire County Council and Public Health England regarding COVID-19.