20th October 2023
- Headteacher’s Message
- Safeguarding and Participation Team
- Every Day in School Matters
- Therapy Team
- Sea Lions
- Sea Turtles
- Magna Seals
- Post 16
- Creative Arts
- Forest School
The new school year has been extremely busy and productive! The children have settled in well after the summer holiday and have all been working very hard. Pupils have been looking at the theme of ‘Heroes Who Help Us’ and have been learning about a wide range of people who might support the children in their lives. This has included trips to the fire station and visitors from the police and ambulance service.
After half term, we will be looking at the theme of ‘Light Fantastic’. This will no doubt involve fireworks and Christmas! As always, we will be holding an annual Christmas Fair, please keep an eye out for further details after half term.
I would like to say a huge well done to our Post 16 pupils this term. A number have begun their work placements and these have been very successful. The others have been accessing provision in off-site settings and have been extremely positive and flexible. We are really proud of them all!
Once again, I do not have any more of an update about the building works. However, we will be undertaking some refurbishment of some of the outside areas over the holiday and will be creating more seating spaces for the children to interact together.
Finally, please note all pupils return to school on Monday 30th October.
In the meantime, I hope you all have an enjoyable half term!
Safeguarding and Participation Team
Meet the Designated Safeguarding Team
The Safeguarding Team oversee and coordinate all aspects of the school’s work to ensure that pupils are kept safe. They regularly attend training to ensure their skills and knowledge are up-to-date.
Designated Safeguarding Lead: Adam Bradford
Deputy Designated Safeguarding Leads: Geoff Cherrill and Jo Snow.
For a copy of our school’s Safeguarding Policy and other helpful links please visit the Safeguarding page on the school website.
Statutory guidance from the Department for Education helps guide us on policy and practice, this includes Keeping Children Safe in Education which is available on the link below:
Vaping Amongst Children
The supply of disposable vapes has exploded over recent months. The designs of the packaging and the fruity flavours have made vaping more appealing to children.
The knock-on effect of the popularity of vaping amongst children is that perpetrators of Child Sexual or Criminal Exploitation and abuse are giving vapes to individuals as part of their grooming tactics. If you know of any local businesses selling vapes to underage children, please report this to the Police.
To read more about the use of vapes amongst young people please see the report by Ash.
Family hubs, early help and outreach centres
A range of support is available for families living in Bournemouth, Christchurch and Poole. By working alongside local communities, with other professionals and the voluntary sector, the aim is to provide the right help at the right time for you and your family.
For information about the services available please see the link below:
Firework Night Safety Tips
The safest way to enjoy bonfire night is to attend a professionally organised display. NHS A&E services attended well over 4000 firework injuries in 2017/18, with over 350 pre-school children treated in hospital for firework injuries in the past five years. The Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents say many more accidents happen at smaller family or private events than at public displays. However, if you prefer the more hands-on experience of lighting your own fireworks, make sure you follow the firework code.
We can all struggle with how we’re feeling, but sometimes things get tough and it can be difficult to cope. For so many young people, when this happens, they don’t get the help they need, when they need it. But together, we can change this.
World Mental Health Day 10th October 2023
We helped raise awareness for Mental Health by supporting Young Minds #helloyellow by wearing an item of yellow clothing, the whole school took part in a yellow photo booth, lessons throughout the day had a mental health theme and we continue to use the zones and toolkits daily to help share how we feel and self-regulate. All children came home with a copy of the zones and families encouraged to lift a cup (tea bag provided!) to better treatment and prevention of Mental Health by sharing how we are feeling.
Please keep the zones and revisit them regularly together.
Have a fantastic and most importantly safe holiday.
Adam, Jo, Abi, Kelly & James
Every Day in School Matters
Types of Absence
Every half-day absence from school, by law, has to be classified as either authorised or unauthorised. This is why information about the cause of absence is always asked for.
These are mornings or afternoons away from school for a valid reason such as illness, emergency medical or dental appointments (routine appointments should always be made out of school hours) and emergencies.
An absence is classified as Unauthorised if the reason was not recognised as acceptable. The Department for Education (DfE) and Local Education Authorities provide information for schools as to what is acceptable and what is not.
Examples of reasons that would not be accepted:
- A birthday
- A shopping trip
- Day trips
- Holidays - unless these have been agreed as exceptional circumstances.
Is my child too ill for school?
It can be tricky deciding whether or not to keep your child off school, nursery or playgroup when they're unwell.
There are government guidelines for schools and nurseries about managing specific infectious diseases at GOV.UK. These say when children should be kept off school and when they shouldn't.
Please be advised that your child’s attendance and any absences will be reviewed over the half term break. Where attendance is causing concern and below 95% for this first half term, please be advised that you will receive a letter informing you. Should you wish to discuss your child’s attendance please do not hesitate to get in contact with Adam Bradford.
This half term our curriculum theme ‘Heroes that Help Us’ is a history topic. Pupils have been finding out about people that have helped to transform our lives for the better. Through this topic we have taken the approach to learn about people near and dear to us that help us with our daily lives from family members to our TA’s and teachers. This then moves to look at people in our community that help us from nurses and doctors to police and beyond this looking back at historical figures who have helped shape our lives from Florence Nightingale to Sir Bernard-Lee - who created the Internet.
Some classes have visited the local Police and Fire Stations to understand about the work that our local heroes do and we have been lucky enough to have the Police Service and RNLI join us in school this half term to talk to pupils about their roles and give practical demonstrations, pupils thoroughly enjoyed these experiences and engaged well with our visitors.
We are really excited to have launched our ‘Active 8 programme across the curriculum pathways, these sessions will take place throughout the week to support pupils developing their fine and gross motor skills to enable them to competently complete life skills and improve their handwriting skills.
Pupils are engaging well in our new social interactions programme developed and supported by the speech and language team this gives us time every day for pupils to develop their social skills in both formal and informal learning situations.
Lobsters team have taken on the running of the school Café and have hit the ground running with offering services to several classes on site. The café drives their learning through the week so that pupils are considering how to order, cost and prepare for the café. Pupils attending the café have utilised the café to continue their social interactions learning whilst enjoying the food and drinks on offer. Well done to Lobsters class, a great start!
We hosted our annual Careers Fair at the beginning of October, with a wide variety of Post 16 providers attending to support pupils to consider their next steps at Post 16, it was great to see so many of our parents and carers in attendance as well!
This half term we have elected the School Council for the year ahead, and their first job being to decide on a local Charity that the school will fundraise money for this year. All classes had an opportunity to put forward a charity of choice from the local area and these ranged from Julia’s House to the Margaret Green Charity. The School Council unanimously voted to work with animals and the charity selected is ‘High Mead Farm’ a charity whose therapeutic approach supports people with additional needs to gain work experience on their farm. Volunteers learn how to look after animals, grow vegetables and support the shop with sales. We look forward to working closely with High Mead Farm this year.
I hope you all have a relaxing half term and re-charge ready for the build towards Christmas, our theme next half term is ‘Light Fantastic.’
School Link Paediatrician
As the school has grown and expanded into various satellite settings, it has become clear that the number of children requiring assessment and/or medical input has now exceeded the available resources through our school link Paediatrician.
To ensure that families have access to the most appropriate medical support, moving forward the plan will be:
- Children with neurodevelopmental diagnosis who require regular reviews, for example children with ADHD who are on medication; children with Down Syndrome, will be reviewed by a neurodevelopmental consultant or speciality doctor in the CDC or community as appropriate. Families will be contacted directly about their next appointment.
- Children whose neurodevelopmental needs are still under assessment will be seen by the neurodevelopmental team in the CDC.
- Children with suspected neurodevelopmental diagnosis will be referred for assessment via the Development and Behaviour Pathway; those accepted will be seen in the CDC.
- Children with medical conditions (e.g., epilepsy, cardiac conditions, coeliac) who are under a general paediatrician and/or tertiary specialist will continue to have their appointments in Children Outpatients as required. These teams will ensure Open Access to the Children’s Unit as required. Parents can contact the appropriate admin teams for associated enquiries.
- If children are being seen by therapists, or other services, parents should ask the appropriate admin teams directly for copies of reports and share with school as appropriate.
- For children with difficulty sleeping, Michelle will be providing sleep workshops for families at the school.
Referrals may be requested by a parent/carer of a pupil if you have a medical concern. Please be mindful that with any medical concern you should always talk to you GP first to gain the appropriate medical advice.
If you would like to request a referral to the Paediatrician, please email the Michelle: [email protected]
I will be scheduling a date to provide a sleep workshop after half term. This workshop will be available to parents/carers of pupils and their families that are experiencing ongoing sleep problems at home.
The sleep workshop will provide the following information and support:
- What is sleep?
- Sleep stages
- Cause of sleep issues
- Impact of sleep deprivation
- Sleep advice and resources
- Strategies and programmes
- Bedroom environments
- Nightmares, night terrors and sleep walking
If you are interested in attending a 2hr workshop after half term, please confirm your interest by email: [email protected]
As most of you are aware we have recently had a visit from the Immunisation Team to administer Flu Vaccinations in school. If your child was unwell on the day and did not attend school or the vaccine was not given on the day for another reason you will be contacted directly by the Immunisation Team to attend a catch-up clinic. Please check on your emails.
Head Bump Letters
If your child should receive a head bump whilst at school you will be sent a head bump letter containing information on symptoms to look out for, this will be sent with the accident report on the day the injury happened. Please ensure you sign, date and return this to school to be kept for school records.
Please use our medical email address [email protected] if you would like to discuss the following:
Request referrals - School Paediatrician, ID-CAMHS, Continence Team, Sleep Clinic, Community Dietician and Dental Service.
General enquiry box - [email protected] to be used for any other medical related issue other than listed above.
We aim to respond to all email enquiries the same day.
If your child requires medication during school time for a medical condition you must complete an M2 form, this is available in reception or on the school website to download.
Paracetamol - please be advised that we have a Medication Policy in place that states we can only administer prescribed medications which includes Paracetamol.
As always if the medical team can offer any support or advice, please contact us.
Michelle and Jane
We have hit the ground running this new academic year with lots of new initiatives starting.
Speech and Language Therapy
The Speech and Language Therapists and Therapy Assistants have been busy launching a new social interaction and social communication curriculum that works on appropriate social skills across the whole school following this hierarchy.
The Therapy team have been going into all classes to support class teams to deliver the curriculum content during their PSHE time. Here are some photos from the Social Communication lessons:
Dolphins and Puffins pupils often ask the therapy team when they see us around school when they get to do more Lego. We are taking that as a sign that Lego-Based Therapy is hugely popular!
We also had great take-up of our Early Communication Group sessions in the summer holidays for pupils in the Discoverer’s curriculum and their parents/carers. The aim of these sessions is for the SaLTs to model PECS, PEIC-D and Attention Autism, to help these strategies be used at home.
We have renamed our Busy Hands initiative for fine motor skills into Active8! Active8 involves activities and resources designed to develop fine motor skills. It works on hand, arm and shoulder strength and hand coordination. We have rolled this out across 9 additional classes this half term. By next half term, each class will have an Active8 box with resources that are appropriate to the class skill level and pupil interests. We have collaborated with subject leads to ensure the boxes work on fine motor skills across a range of areas.
We have had positive feedback from pupils - the pupils at Magna told us how much they enjoy their Active8 box!
Jane, the Physiotherapist, has been leading physical sessions with Sea Lions, Sea Turtles and Oysters. These aim to develop overall strength, stamina and coordination. The pupils have engaged really well in these sessions so far - one pupil in Oysters has started crawling backwards!
A new joint PE and Physiotherapy group has started with pupils from Puffins class. These sessions work on foundation motor skills which underpin everything we do.
What an amazing half term our Ocean class have had. Ruben, Rocco and Chase have welcomed 8 new children into the class, and we could not be prouder of how they have done this. We are equally proud of how our new children have embraced the beginning of their learning journey at Winchelsea. The children are already starting to build relationships with the adults in class and beginning to get a feel for their day.
This term we have focused on getting to know the environment, the adults, and our peers, and for some, getting used to the changes in the classroom. We are working on establishing our routines and boundaries, learning when and where we have snack and lunch, where our drinks bottles are kept, where we wash our hands and manage our intimate care, and what our favourite toys and activities are.
Through our topic ‘Heroes Who Help Us’ some of the activities we have explored have been painting, sand play, water play, building (several of the children really appear to enjoy building), movement using the obstacle course equipment and soft play bricks, and the musical instruments. We have also explored the wider school environment by walking around the field and through the woods at the top, practiced for the fire alarm, and walked to the park for PE. We will be continuing to work on this.
We have really enjoyed getting to know the children, what they like and don’t like, and beginning to understand some of the things that we will be working on during the coming year. We have also loved re-establishing our relationships with those that are spending some more time with us.
Next term our topic will be ‘Light Fantastic’ as we move through our second term. We hope that we will be able to explore our wider local community, so a gentle reminder to send your child in with some wellie boots, a coat, hat and gloves for the coming colder months.
We hope you have a wonderful half term break, stay safe and enjoy the time together.
The Ocean Class Team
We hope this newsletter finds you well and provides a glimpse into the activities and experiences our pupils have enjoyed this half term. We have been amazed by their curiosity, creativity, and enthusiasm in exploring the theme of 'Heroes Who Help Us'.
One of the standout moments was in our sensory story session. Watching the pupil’s faces’ light up as they explored red, orange, and yellow tissue paper that gently floated down like autumn leaves, and feeling the excitement when they encountered real water being sprayed and dripping onto paper was truly heart-warming. Hand warmers were passed around, and they engaged with labelling them as 'hot.' It's lovely to see them exploring with their senses and learning through play.
Pupils have thoroughly enjoyed being in the garden, getting their hands wet with water, buckets, and sponges. They held, squashed, squeezed, and even threw sponges. Our outdoor activities have also included visits to the park, seeing them develop physical skills while having fun.
During circle time pupils have stomped and clapped to rhythms, embarked on an Arctic animal adventure through storytelling, and experienced relaxation with the soothing "I Lava You" song.
Our pupils have been preparing for 'trips' by learning to put on wellies, coats, and bags independently. We recently took a walk around the field, and it was impressive to see them follow instructions, stop with adults, and enjoy their time listening to songs in the fire drill area before returning to the classroom.
Harbour have engaged well and explored a variety of play stations. They have moulded playdough and explored firefighter playdough mats, explored doctors’ and vets’ equipment and built various structures with both large blocks and small world characters.
In the sensory-rich activities, pupils engaged in shaving foam painting, investigating all things green, and played with wet and dry sensory materials. Harbour have also been developing their fine motors skills for example, spreading jam on toast!
Our number songs, including "10 in a Bed," "5 Current Buns," "5 Speckled Frogs," and "5 Little Ducks," have been a source of great joy and learning for pupils, and in table activities, they have been exploring various construction resources and puzzles.
We are incredibly proud of the progress of our class this half term. Their enthusiasm and engagement have been a great start to the year.
Have a lovely half term break.
The Harbour class team
We have had a great start to the year, the class are interacting well with each other and developing relationships.
The class have thoroughly enjoyed the theme this half term ‘Heroes that Help Us’, they were particularly engaged with a visit from the police and especially loved exploring the car! It has been great to have the photographs from home to share about the jobs they do; it has really helped us to support the theme, thank-you. In addition to this we have been roleplaying different jobs people do to help us, including; shop keepers, chefs (cooking), baby role play -changing and bathing, bus drivers and a variety of dressing up characters!
On our community visit to Poole Quay, we looked at the lifeboats and visited the RNLI museum to view the old lifeboat and try on some of the uniforms. The children were fantastic, they engaged well with the activities and walked beautifully there and back.
Pupils have taken an active role in our daily movement story ‘Storycise’ where they are developing their physical movements as they listen to and interact with the story, also as part of their morning routine the class have joined in well with a variety of songs and phonic sounds.
Across our food sensory activities, we have been focussing on cold, pupils have had a variety of cold items to hold and explore. We have also used a variety of different foods in Art making some great food faces with several children sampling them.
Well done Oysters!
Have a great half term break.
What a lovely first half term back! I am very impressed with how well Penguin Class have settled back into their learning.
This half term, our theme has been ‘Heroes That Help Us’. We have been learning about all the different people at home, in school and in the community that can help us. We have discovered how to identify a doctor by what equipment they use, and looked at a stethoscope. Our learning has started to feed into our community visits, with our first trip to Poole Quay, where we were lucky enough to spot the RNLI doing their training. We have also been to Sainsbury’s to find people that can help us with our shopping.
In English we have focused on two books this half term. ‘Flashing Fire Engines’ by Tony Mitton and ‘A Day with The Animal Doctors’ by Sharon Rentta. We have used these books to support our speaking and listening development by asking and answering different questions on the text and used moving pictures to help retell the stories. Moving pictures are a great Winchelsea resource that helps pupils show what they know about a story. We have also used it to support our shape coding development by finding different ‘who’ and ‘what’ words within the text. As a class, we have continued to develop our phonics, reading and blending skills, making good progress.
In Maths, our focus has been number and place value. After working on our counting and number ordering, we moved onto number value. We have worked on identifying the value of a number by looking at the 100s 10s and 1s in a number. We have gone on to find out how we can find 1 or 10 more than each number. Well done Penguin class, as they have shown excellent perseverance with their numbers.
In PSHE we have been working on our understanding of the Winchelsea zones. We have applied our zones to our group play skills, by discussing how we feel when we get to play with preferred and non-preferred toys. In RE, we have been learning about the story of Moses, after reading this, we used moving pictures to help retell and answer questions on the story. We also created our own sensory story by creating Egypt out of sand, which included the Pyramids and the River Nile. Well done Penguins for excellent retelling.
In ICT, we have been working on independence when logging on to iPads and Purple Mash.
Next half term, our theme will be ‘Light Fantastic’. This will be a science-based topic!
Penguins will continue with their community visits next half term, and information will be sent out in weekly newsletters.
Have a lovely half term,
The Penguins Class team
Starfish have had a lovely time these last few weeks. We have been looking at heroes, mainly focusing on ourselves, our families and class friends. The children have enjoyed exploring mirrors and making different faces in it to see what we look like. This has led nicely into emotions and what our faces do when we feel a certain way.
We have started our local walks again and these have been hugely successful! The children have been enjoying looking at the seasonal changes, seeing Autumn come in and all of the beautiful colours. We have linked this in to creative lessons, using autumnal paints and other colouring equipment, painting our found natural resources. We have been really enjoying printing using leaves!
Forest school has been a huge success with some of the children getting to go off site to Forest school. This has been great for building independence and life skills, as well as learning about a new environment.
As always, we have been focusing on communication, especially labelling what we can see. It has been lovely watching the children starting to use their preferred communication method to let us know what they can see in the world around them.
In My World lessons, we have been looking at people who help us such as the emergency services and have been lucky enough to receive a visit from a policeman, having a go at dressing up and even sitting in their police car! The children have really enjoyed playing with the different emergency vehicle toys.
It has been a lovely start to the school year and we are very proud of how they have returned to school! Well done Starfish Class!
I’m not sure if this Half Term has gone fast or slow!? ‘Slow’ because we’ve managed to fit so much into each week or ‘fast’ because I am not sure how we are at October Half Term already! Jellyfish Class have had a great start to this academic year. During the beginning of this half term, we have focussed on self-regulation and this is something we will continue to work on throughout the year. The pupils have created new Toolkits to help themselves when they are not in the yellow zone and these have been implemented accordingly as well as used to help transition between lessons.
This Half Term’s theme has been ‘Heroes Who Help Us’. For our sparkly starter, we had a visit from a policeman which was very exciting. We looked at his uniform, asked him questions and got to sit in his police car! Some of you may recognise this officer as it was Mr Josh who is now in the Police! The class have also enjoyed learning about other heroes who help us; dentists, doctors, teachers, paramedics and family. Jellyfish pupils have also been thinking about ‘Word of the Term’ which is “helping” and how they themselves can help others. The class have also enjoyed continuing their Busy Hands lessons. This has encouraged peer relationships as well as begun developing the class fine and gross motor skills. On Fridays, we have been enjoying Food Therapy alongside some cooking skills. We have experienced ‘hot’, ‘cold’ and crunchy, and we have made Angel Delight (which was a great bicep workout for the pupils… and adults!). The class have been lucky enough to swim every Wednesday which has been great - playing with toys, becoming more water confident and practicing independent changing before and after the pool.
Next Half Term, our theme is ‘Light Fantastic’. We are looking forward to experimenting with different light sources. We are also hoping to explore some new places out in the community once we have mastered better listening and road safety skills. I hope that after October Half Term, we continue building good relationships as well as being more independent in our emotional regulation. Miss Naomi is also looking forward to planning some fun festive activities as we lead up to the big ‘C’ word… CHRISTMAS!!!!!!!!
The whole class have been progressing in their relationships with their peers and the class team. This is allowing us to make great strides in their learning and personal development which is something I look forward to seeing continue throughout the rest of 2023 and into 2024!
Dolphin class have made a great start to the term after the long summer break, welcoming Daisy, Nora, Amelie and Yashfi to the class. We have invested time getting to know one another and produced some wonderfully colourful ‘All About Me’ posters. We were super impressed by Daisy, who after a quiet first few days, confidently presented her poster, whilst talking beautifully to her new classmates.
Earlier this term we welcomed back our favourite local Policeman, Mr Josh. He allowed us to try on equipment and explore the police car, which was a great introduction to our theme this term ‘Heroes That Help Us’. We continued to explore this theme with an assembly focused around the RNLI, where we all had the opportunity to learn about the different ways that Lifeguards keep us safe and what things we can do ourselves to be safe in and around water. We especially enjoyed trying on the RNLI clothes and equipment, which we noticed was mostly bright yellow and red so that we could be easily seen!
In the early parts of this term, we spent some valuable time agreeing our class charter, which reminds us of what we can all do to promote a positive, happy and independent learning environment. To help us remember, we also acted out and took photos for our class display, which included; good listening, kind hands, always doing our best work, sharing with friends, keeping the classroom tidy and using our personal toolkits when needed. Everyone enjoyed working together to create our charter, where Shyla and Samantha really shone when given the opportunity to showcase their talents in performing to others.
Pupils have been working particularly hard during PSHE snack time, where we have been taking orders, preparing drinks and toast, as well as developing our communication skills and washing up afterwards. Many of these skills have continued to develop whilst attending the new Winchelsea Café each Friday. Here, pupils are able to order and buy drinks and a snack, putting their communication and problem-solving skills into practice, whilst enjoying some tasty treats at the same time!
In My Problem Solving, we have been working on the Months of the year, thinking about our age and when our birthdays are. Charlie has been working particularly hard with this and shown great improvement with knowing the months of the year and remembering the date of his birthday.
Our next half-term topic will be ‘Light Fantastic’. We hope all the pupils and their families have a fantastic half term break and we look forward to seeing you all again soon.
What a fantastic start to the new academic year. We couldn’t be prouder of the way in which our pupils in Octopus Class have kicked off the new term by settling into class so well.
Our theme this half term has been ‘Heroes Who Help Us’ and we’ve packed a lot in. The class has been visited by the police and they loved dressing up as RNLI coastguards. We have visited the fire station and learnt about emergency vehicles. We have also been exploring how we can help each other. We achieved this by keeping our class tidy and by being kind to others and developing skills in waiting.
We have been finding out about what our pupils’ interests are and what motivates and excites them in their learning. It has been great to see our pupils utilising their communication aids and maximising opportunities to talk to both adults and peers, we have seen a great improvement in pupil’s verbal and requesting skills.
In My Problem Solving we have been looking at number and specifically number representation. Exploring how a written digit represents a fixed amount, this was established through a range of practical items such as police cars and fire engines. We have also explored the primary and secondary colours and in one particular lesson, Octopus Class excelled at sorting colours to the correct tables, the contents of which had ended up on the floor which also enabled us to engage in helpful tidying.
In Creative Arts we have focused on group projects, pupils worked alongside each other to create our very own giant Clifford the Red Dog. Pupils have also explored artworks by Vincent Van Gogh and Yves Klein to experiment with how colour can be used in their art work.
We are so proud of the start that Octopus Class have made this half term and excited to see what they will achieve next, as we continue to develop a lifelong love of learning together.
What a lovely first half term we’ve had in Shells class! The children have settled in quickly and returned to school full of energy and ready to learn. They have really enjoyed our theme for this half term, ‘Heroes Who Help Us’, and have enjoyed exploring lots of learning opportunities related to this.
Our class story this half term has been ‘Super Duck’. We have been focusing on developing our sentences using shape coding, matching characters, objects and doing words from the story to the correct shape in order to make simple sentences. We will continue to use shape coding throughout this year in order to keep developing our sentence structures. We have also had lots of fun designing and making our own kites, as well as exploring making parachutes for Frog.
In our problem-solving sessions we have been working on our number recognition and ordering of numbers above 10. We have also been working on our understanding of amounts, and counting out with 1:1 correspondence. The children have really enjoyed our maths activities related to our topic, where they have role-played being a shopkeeper/customer, sorted letters and parcels by size and used spray bottles to ‘put out’ numbered fires.
We have also been working on following instructions to make a sandwich. Each week the children have been given a visual list that they have to follow in order to make their sandwich. It’s been great to see their independence grow in this activity across the weeks as they have become more familiar with each of the steps.
Our life skills focus for this half term has been around sharing and turn taking. We have practiced this by playing lots of turn taking games, and working together to build and make things, as well as sharing our favourite toys. The children have made great progress, it has been lovely to see them begin to take part in shared play, and this will continue to be a skill that we work on for the rest of the year in our social interaction sessions.
In our My World lessons we have been exploring the roles of different real-life heroes through role-play. We have been builders in the sandpit, used doctors’ equipment to help poorly dolls, made our own bus and practiced buying tickets, and made lollypop stop signs and practiced crossing the road safely, among many other hero roles! The children have loved using their imaginations and discovering how all of these different roles help us.
We are so proud of how well the children have settled into their new class, and the progress they are making already. Next half term our theme will be ‘Light Fantastic’.
We hope you all have a lovely half term,
Shells Class Team
It has been an incredible first half term in Sea Lions class. The energy and enthusiasm that the pupils have shown for their learning has been a joy to see. They have fully embraced our theme of ‘Heroes Who help Us’ right across the curriculum, from pictures of emergency vehicles and superheroes to thinking about what a hero actually is, the pupils have gone above and beyond with their learning.
In English we have enjoyed the book ‘The Midnight Gang’ by the legendary David Walliams. The class have enjoyed the humour within the book but have also understood that life can be complex and that not all heroes wear capes and save cities. Alongside the book the pupils have completed some amazing writing around the story and have also enjoyed engaging with our morning phonics activities.
“I have enjoyed our book The Midnight Gang”- Jay
In Maths we have been looking at addition and subtraction using a variety of methods and have been exploring measurement by comparing the lengths of objects around the classroom as well as looking at how we differ in height.
“I enjoyed maths because we have used coins and Numicon” - Erin
The wider curriculum has also stayed true to our theme. In My World and PSHE we have been exploring the true nature and personality of a hero as well as homing in on our emotions, exploring what happens to our bodies when we are sad, angry and happy. Our STEAM sessions have been fun and we have built many crazy things from plastic cup telephones to mini litter pickers made from straws!
In Music we have thought about our musical heroes and in Art we have explored patterns in nature and have been working with clay. P.E. has been fun this half term and we have found a raft of new ways to test and improve our core body strength and hand eye coordination. In religion and World Views we have explored the story of Moses, a hero who helped his people flee from persecution.
Next half term we are looking forward to our new theme of ‘Light Fantastic’. Our book will be ‘Orion and the Dark,’ a story that we are really looking forward to. In Maths we will be exploring money alongside continuing to improve our core number skills. We will also be looking at 2D and 3D shapes.
It has been a truly amazing half term and we are very proud of all that the pupils have achieved and how they are striving to make helpful choices each and every day.
See you all next half term!
The Sea Lions class team
Sea Turtles Class have settled into the new school year wonderfully. Our theme this term has been ‘Heroes That Help Us’ and we have all engaged with the topic enthusiastically and we have all worked extremely hard across the entire curriculum. We have enjoyed finding out about famous heroes and heroes that help in our community.
This half term, we have all thoroughly enjoyed getting to know Teddy the school dog - giving him treats and watching him improve his tricks!
Our class texts for English linked to the heroes’ theme have been: ‘Stefano the Squid Hero of the Deep’ by Wendy Meddour and Duncan Beedie and ‘Paddington Goes to Hospital’ by Michael Bond and Karen Jankel. We have discussed how the characters in the stories are heroic and what qualities a person needs to be a hero. We wrote some amazing sentences using powerful adjectives and perfect punctuation! We finished by writing thank you notes to the main characters in the stories for being heroes.
In Maths, we have been developing our addition and subtraction skills. We also looked at place value in 2 and 3-digit numbers. We moved onto comparing quantities by creating our own tally charts based on research from the class. We compared the data we collected, created bar charts and asked and answered questions.
In RE, we have been learning about the story of Moses and how he helped his people to be free. We acted out the story using masks we had made ourselves and we talked about how Moses was a hero.
In Home Cooking, we have been making Rice Crispy cakes using white chocolate. We also enjoyed making tasty pitta pizzas. We carefully cut our vegetables and created faces on the pittas before we put them into the oven.
In Art, we have been looking at patterns in nature. We drew shells and leaves, carefully looking at the patterns and colours. We also looked at close up photographs of lots of different types of natural patterns, including zebra stripes, ladybird spots and giraffes’ spotty necks! We then used paint to create a larger version of some patterns in nature.
In STEAM, we have been experimenting with electrical circuits, creating paper helicopters and looking at what happens when skittles are mixed with hot and cold water. We also made predictions about what would happen when we added salt and food colouring to blocks of ice. We had great fun watching the results of the experiment.
Our PE lessons have focused on developing our shoulder muscles. We have developed our throwing, catching and rolling skills. We have also focused on teamwork, accuracy and listening skills.
In Music, we have been exploring percussion instruments and joining in with body percussion rhythms. We have also looked at different kinds of music from around the world.
Our Woodland Learning this term has been based around exploring patterns in nature and linked to our work in Art. We made bark rubbings of different tree trunks and talked about the patterns we could see. We worked with a partner to tick off items on a nature scavenger hunt. We have also collected a variety of natural items from the forest that we found interesting to add to our nature table back in the classroom.
“I really like Forest Schools because we all find big trees to climb in” - DT
“I really like cooking and tasting all of the ingredients we use” - AB
“I like Steam because I like doing all the different experiments and seeing what happens” - TB
“I really liked the fizzy colours in STEAM. I liked looking at the different colours and how they fizzed together. When we looked at it with the magnifying glass, we could see different patterns” - WC
“I really like art and doing all the different types of painting” - BF
Our theme next term will be ‘Light Fantastic.’ This is a science topic and will focus around looking at how sunlight lights the Earth, what happens when the sun goes down and how rainbows are made.
The Sea Turtles team thank you for your continued support.
What a fantastic start to the new school year!
We have had a great half term in puffin class learning all about our topic “Heroes Who Help Us”.
All pupils have worked so hard and we are so proud of them!
In English, we have been reading the book “The Robot and the Bluebird” by David Lucas. We used moving pictures to help explain and re tell the opening of the story, and we talked about how the characters would have felt, and what they may have been thinking. Using our speaking and listening skills we discussed as a class and shared ideas of what we think may happen in the story, and put our predictions into sentences.
In My world, we have been learning about Florence Nightingale we looked at, and compared differences from past and present, hospitals and nurses, and how and why Florence made changes to improve modern day nursing. We discussed job roles and the qualities doctors and nurses would need to make them great.
In Maths, we have been doing 1 more and 1 less of numerals to 100, using concrete and pictorial resources, Numicon, cubes and 100 squares. We have also been looking at the same concept in word problems, we have been identifying key words, and specific information, and starting to show our working out, to retrieve and explain the answer.
In RE, we have been learning about 'Moses', we read the story and we talked about the different religions, and ordered and re told the story. The children were then all given a character, they role played and re-enacted the story. They did fantastic and it was great fun to watch!
As always, we have been looking at our zones, using our tool kits when needed, celebrating each other’s successes, and making great friendships and relationships with both pupils and adults in Puffin class.
This half term we went on a fantastic trip to Hamworthy Fire station. We went into the control room to see the first response team, and how the station is notified of an emergency, they sounded the alarms and sent through a fax on the machine, greeting Puffins class to the station! We explored different vehicles, and the equipment that is carried on board and took it in turns to spray the water hose at the training tower. The pupils really enjoyed going inside each vehicle, and dressing up in the fireman’s outfits. We then labelled equipment that the firefighters use, explained what it was used for, and explored the skills and qualities needed to be a great firefighter. We looked at fire engines past and present, and tried to order them according to how they have changed, and shared our ideas and opinions about them, the pupils were very surprised with outcome.
Our next topic is ‘Light Fantastic’.
Have a lovely half term!
Silvia, Sammy and Emily
What an amazing first half term Lobster class have had. Our main focus has been on the setting up and running of the Winchelsea Café. Although we knew that we had big shoes to fill from the Post 16 café, Lobsters have really raised to the challenge. The café has been weaved in to a wide range of our learning this term. In Maths we have been learning about money, making sure that we are able to identify the different coins, work out how much money we have as well as counting out the money that we need. In ICT we have been looking at how to email, so that in the new term we are able to email classes to let them know of any café news and weekly specials. In Forest School we have been using saws, drills and sanders so that we are able to build stands so that we can ensure that orders get to the correct people. Lobster class have also been thinking about how people should behave at work. We have been discussing codes of conduct and have created one linked to our work in the café. We have also discussed what might happen in the ‘real’ world if these are not followed. Lobster class have also decided that customers should have a code of conduct which they have emailed the different classes to ensure that the café runs smoothly.
In Music we have been talking about who our musical heroes are. We have really enjoyed listening to each other’s choices of music and talking about how they make us feel. As part of this the class have created fact files of their musical heroes.
In My World we have been learning what to do in an emergency. We have discussed when we should call the emergency services and what information we need to give. Lobsters have done a great job thinking about what they would need to say and how they could ensure that this information is given in a clear way.
In English we have been looking at a book called ‘Rags: Hero Dog of WWI’ written by Margot Theis Raven. Through this Lobsters have been thinking about using powerful words to describe settings and events and we have also been discovering what life would have been like during this time. In our reading time, we have been doing a range of activities around phonics and comprehension. Lobsters have really enjoyed listening to our class read ‘World’s Worst Teacher’.
What a great start Seahorses class have had. Some pupils transitioned onto main site into class, others moved in from different classes and even some pupils from different schools joined to form Seahorses 2023-2024. Everyone has settled really well and got into the routine really quickly.
For some pupils moving around the site to the different teachers was very new, but all pupils are just taking it in their stride and thriving.
Our topic this term is ‘Heroes Who Help Us’ and pupils have been lucky enough to have a few real-life heroes visit the school. Mr Josh, who recently left Winchelsea to join the Police Force came back with his police car wearing his uniform. He answered pupils’ questions and we were able to look inside and explore his police car afterwards. We also had Sam in from the RNLI talking to us about the importance of water safety and how the RNLI can help if we get into trouble in the water.
In English pupils are working hard and using the book ‘War Dog’ by Chris Ryan as the link to our topic ‘Heroes Who Help Us’. Pupils have been comparing smells in controlled bags in a blind test, to show how good a sniffer dog’s smell is and writing compound sentences joined with ‘but’ and ‘so’.
In Maths pupils have been working on a mixture of skills. They have been shown what an exam paper looks like and even had a go at completing it in class - with pupils asking for support if they were unsure. Seahorses have also been using practical money maths where they have been adding the cost of items and calculating what change they would receive. They put these skills to the test at the Winchelsea café, where they bought items and some pupils even helped the pupils running the café by knowing how much change they should receive.
In Home cooking pupils have been looking at how to follow a recipe and preparing fruits and vegetables for cooking. Pupils have been lucky enough to make two different types of Minestrone soup - each with a slight ingredient change that really impacted the flavour, and Thai style fish finger baguettes. After preparing their meals the pupils get to enjoy eating what they have made.
Pupils have been using their reading time at the end of the day to complete various activities. Pupils are sometimes independent reading, group reading, listening to an adult read or completing reading related tasks. To link with our topic ‘Heroes Who Help Us’ they have looked at stories about donkeys helping carry injured people during WW1 and Irena Sendlerowa, who saved children from the Warsaw Ghettos during WW2.
It has been a great half term and we hope to continue to go from strength-to-strength next half term.
What a great start to the year we have had at Magna. The staff and pupils who were at Magna last academic year have welcomed Miss Ciara, Mrs Meachin and new pupils helping us all settle in. We are all adjusting to the new timetable and the new ‘Active 8’ sessions, which work on developing functional motor skills, have become a new favourite with the pupils.
This half term’s topic has been ‘Heroes Who Help Us’. We began the half term with a visit from Mark, who works for the Dorset and Somerset Air Ambulance. Unfortunately, he didn’t bring the helicopter, but the pupils did enjoy trying on the uniforms and looking at the critical response car. We have also been to Winchelsea main site for an assembly with the RNLI, where we learnt about the different types of boats they use and the work that the charity does. We have developed this further in our My World lessons by looking at historical figures such as Martin Luther King Junior, Anne Frank and Stephen Hawking. We also looked at 21st Century famous figures who could be considered heroes including Malala Yousafzai and Marley Dias. We have used the theme as an opportunity to capture the pupil’s interest in STEAM lessons this term, they have worked on their skills of research, testing, design and building by creating their own emergency vehicles and windsocks.
In English we have been reading ‘Bubble Boy’ by Stuart Foster, a story about a boy who is unwell and unable to leave the hospital room he is in. The pupils have shown a good understanding of the story as well as showing empathy when thinking about the characters in the story. We have been writing letters and emails and the pupils have produced some great examples. Pupils have also shown a great understanding through their retelling of the story.
Maths this half term has been focussing on fundamental concepts such as place value understanding addition and subtraction. Both groups have been using different resources to consolidate their understanding and help with reasoning and problem solving.
Cooking this term has been focussed around frozen food. We have made frozen berry crumble, smoothies and mug cakes. We are cooking on main site fortnightly to access the cooking room which will allow us to use a greater range of recipes.
Through all subjects and ICT, we have been developing our typing skills and using Microsoft Word or PowerPoint to produce documents. The pupils have worked really hard on this and showed great resilience when using this software.
PSHE has involved us discussing our thoughts and feelings and understanding how we can address these emotions in a given scenario. Both classes have shown they are able to discuss what different feelings they may encounter day to day as well as how others might feel.
We are looking forward to starting our new topic ‘Light Fantastic’ next half term and the run up to Christmas.
Have a lovely half term and see you in Autumn 2!
Mrs Meachin, Miss Ciara, Miss Megan, Miss Lorraine, Miss Jane and Miss Heather
Manta class have had a brilliant start to the autumn term and they have settled really well into their new class group, enjoying working with a variety of Subject Leads across their new timetable.
Our topic this term has been ‘Heroes Who Help Us’ and, in My World, we have been looking at inventors and inventions that have helped to improve our lives. We have been looking at the emergency services and we have had a number of visitors into Assemblies including the Police Force and RNLI. We have also looked at people who are heroes to us and play an important role in our lives.
In RE we have been looking at the life of Moses and his role in Judaism and Christianity and comparing what was important to Moses to what is important to us now.
In ICT we have been creating and formatting documents linked to heroes in history. We have explored online safety and how to reliably find information online and how to identify fake news and websites. We have also looked at online reputations and online and offline bullying.
In STEAM we have worked on a variety of challenges, including a lesson with an engineering element where students had to work in a team to create a spaghetti and marshmallow structure. Another with a technology element where students worked in pairs to create their own stop frame animation using Lego characters. They had to develop a story line based around heroes who help us and create the background scenery, they then used the animation software to create their own movies.
In PSHE we have been looking at emotional and mental health and healthy and unhealthy coping strategies. We have had a whole school drop day for World Mental Health Day centred around activities that help to support our emotional wellbeing including sensory play, slime making, mindfulness, yoga and creative activities. We have also had time every day to engage in social interactions and started the Talkabout programme using barrier games to help support social communication.
In PE students have been playing rugby and taking part in circuit exercises in the hall. Manta also engage in a weekly wake and shake session on the school field and they have started the Active 8 fine motor programme to help develop fine and gross motor skills.
In Careers we have been looking at skills for employability, appropriate clothing, and working as part of a team to carry out work tasks and roles. The class enjoyed a bit of Lego therapy each taking on the role of either builder, supplier or engineer to gain an understanding of different job roles and how each role was important to complete a work task.
In Cooking students have been making different types of soup.
In Forest School the students have been visiting the woods, looking at nature and the river near to school helping to clear out the rubbish.
In Creative Arts some of the students visited Roche Court observing the sculpture work and then incorporated this into their Art lessons.
As well as our daily Maths and English lessons the students have also been daily reading and doing weekly spelling tests. Our chosen book for class reading is ‘The Diary of Anne Frank’ as they were interested in what they had found out about her in our topic work.
Manta class have started their options groups choosing to do either: Animal Care, Motor Vehicle Studies, Bike Maintenance, Art or Hair and Beauty.
The students have been very busy this term and they have enjoyed their topics, working really hard and engaged in all of their learning.
Have a lovely half term from Manta Class
Our theme this term has been “Heroes That Help Us”. We had a visit from Officer Josh from the police force who told us about some of his experiences and answered lots of questions from us all. He also brought in some uniform that we could try on, let us sit in his police car and we even turned the siren on. We also had visit from the RLNI who told us how they keep people safe on our coastlines and what we can do to keep safe and be heroes ourselves.
In Maths we have been working at different levels for exams. Some groups have been doing algebra, percentage, decimals and fractions. Others have been concentrating on money, conversion and converting measurements.
“Algebra is hard” - MG
“We have been practicing exam papers” - GH
In Cooking, we have made Vietnamese style fish finger baguettes and minestrone soup. The class work hard every lesson and we are really impressed with them. They also clean and tidy the kitchen after they finish their meal, it would be great if they can help out at home to perfect their skills and this may also give you the chance to relax more at home.
“I love it because you learn new things to cook” - Ko Mc
In Forest School, we have been down to the woods in our school base, building bridges to get over the stream. They love their time down there and have so much fun together, sometimes getting rather wet. It has been great to see their conversational skills developing and also their teamwork improving.
I love getting my shoes wet” - JS
PE lessons consist of Fitness on a Monday and Rugby on a Thursday. In Rugby, we have been looking at different skills like: how to throw (pocket to rocket), how to hold the ball, how to run with the ball and what a touchdown is.
“We are learning how to run with a rugby ball and how to throw it” - MT
In STEAM, we have built sculptures with spaghetti and marshmallows, we have created lion pictures with different textures and we are currently working on a Lego animation.
“We get to make, that is a bit creative” - JL
“Eureka!!” - MT
My World has seen us learning about people who have made a difference in history, ‘Heroes’ who compliment our themed learning. We have read about Diane Fossey who spent a lot of time with gorillas, you could try watching ‘Gorillas in The Mist’ with your child as this is based on the real-life story and stars Sigourney Weaver. We also learnt about Harriet Tubman and Irena Sendler, both women risked their lives to save others in very difficult times.
Some of us went on a trip to Roche Court to study some sculptures. In our Art lessons, we have been creating our own versions of art that we saw at Roche Court with the lovely Emma Purchase who has been awesome. Miss Tash has shown us how to “draw with scissors” creating a picture with a negative version too.
It’s been an enjoyable half term and we look forward to seeing them after the holiday when our topic will be ‘Light Fantastic’.
What a great start Post 16 have had. They have all settled in well, making positive relationships with new and familiar peers. We have two new students, Haydn and Bobby that we have welcomed to Winchelsea Post 16 class.
We have been lucky enough to have two extra sites that the students can also extend their education. One is at the Broadstone Youth Centre the other site is Bourne Community Hub, and both are working well.
Our theme this half term has been “Heroes that Help Us”. We have been looking at all different roles that people have who we come across in life and how they help us.
In Maths we have been looking at money and recognising coins and notes. This has helped some of the students when buying ingredients for our cooking sessions as they have had to work out if we have enough money to purchase the various items needed. We have compared different prices on the same product, for example, a loaf of bread.
In English we have been learning about informal and formal letter writing and persuasive writing. The students have really enjoyed some of the funny scenarios in persuasive letter writing, especially the pickled onion factory on the school grounds! We have also joined Broadstone Library to choose different books to read.
We have enjoyed cooking pizzas, smoothies and making toasted sandwiches, with many being very creative with their fillings!
We have been out to The Range to visit the café and in Vocational Skills we have been learning about bricklaying and creating walls around our garden beds, even learning how to put cement poles in.
In Leisure the students have been for an induction at The Junction Gym and have started to go on a Monday afternoon, it is going very well.
It’s been an enjoyable and fun half term and we look forward to seeing them after the holiday when our topic will be ‘Light Fantastic’.
Post 16 Team
Nature Is My Super Hero!
In the Discovers classes we have been looking at colour and colour recognition, we have had all sorts of fun exploring the world of primary colours through sensory play!
Starfish class LOVE getting messy (and so does Miss Tash!)
Roche Court Trip
Some of our KS4 children have been taking part in a super art project called ‘We Walk the Line.” We were lucky enough to go to Roche Court, a wonderful sculpture park in Salisbury! We had a brilliant time looking at sculptures by Richard Long and Laura Ford. It was great to get out and about and enjoy a drive through the countryside.
Dolphins: The Colour Detectives
Dolphin Class have been thinking about the sea. We have been listening to waves and thinking about what we might find at the beach! Here are some of the colour sorting we have been doing.
Autumn has now arrived in full swing. The turning of the season seemed to be a little later this year but now our woods are a beautiful golden brown and orange colour with lots of leaf litter crunching under foot. It has been great to watch our younger pupils find their feet - quite literally - and really notice and explore all the sights, sounds and adventures that Forest School offers.
Our older pupils are starting to clear the stream of fallen trees and debris to help the stream flow more naturally and assist the ecosystem it provides for vital Flora and Fauna in our woodlands. It is already looking so much clearer! The students have decided they would like to use the fallen trees to build a bridge across the stream so we will be working on our tool use and knot tying skills next half term. We will let you know how it goes!
Autumn term is well under way in the PE department and we have lots of events coming up to look forward to.
Our Discoverers pupils have been busy working on their fine/gross motor skills, hand eye coordination and exploring different uses for our equipment.
Billy and Tia exploring the gymnastic horse and climbing
Our Enquirers’ pupils have been working on their hand eye coordination and looking at different fitness circuits and sport for fitness.
Paddy also said about the session “my crawling was perfect today” as we had also been working on our shoulder strength by crawling along benches.
Our accreditation KS4 classes have started their sessions on touch rugby and all seem to be enjoying it. Here you see Izzy attempting to ‘tag’ Crystal.
We also hosted a dodgeball tournament with 4 different Schools. We won lots of games and finished joint 2nd overall. Well done all involved.
Darcy said about the event “It was really fun. We hit others with dodgeballs to win!”
A note for your diary, our Christmas Fair will take place on Thursday 7th December 2023 between 3.30-5.30pm.
Tax Free Childcare
We would like to share with you information promoting Tax Free Childcare. With a Tax-Free Childcare account, working parents will:
- get an extra £2 for every £8 paid in
- get up to £2000 per child, per year or up to £4000 if your child is disabled
- pay for childcare for children up to 11 years or 17 years if they have a disability.
To find more information please follow the link to the Family Information Directory.
The directory is packed with articles covering a variety of information, locally and nationally, for all our families in Bournemouth, Christchurch and Poole with children aged 0 to 19 years including topics for those with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND) 0 to 25 years.
The special educational needs and disabilities information, advice and support service for Bournemouth, Christchurch and Poole also known as SENDiass4BCP.
Take a look at who they are, what they do and how they support young people (up to the age of 25) with SEND and their parents.
This is their website: SENDiass4BCP - SENDiass4BCP