West Leigh Juniors Weekly News 26th april 2024

Dear Parents and Carers,

Following the months of hard work and excitement associated with the Oliver Jr! production, school life has returned to a little more normality. The children have settled back into their usual daily routines with a keen focus on their classroom learning and the summer term curriculum.

Today, the children looked on with interest as the new wet pour was installed around our new piece of playground equipment which I'm sure they are all eager to try out when they return to school on Monday.

Hoping that the weekend brings some blue skies,

Best wishes,

Cheryl Woolf

Executive Headteacher

Diary Dates

New dates in italics

Advance Notice: End of year school reports will be sent home on Friday 12th July to your personal email address held in the school office.

April 2024

  • Tuesday 30th - Athletics Club @ Belfairs 3.25-4.45pm

May 2024

  • Thursday 2nd - Portico Music morning for selected children @ Hamstel Junior School 9am - 11am
  • Thursday 2nd - Danbury meeting for parents @ 2.15pm
  • Forest School club - session 5
  • Friday 3rd - Maths Quiz Club Area Heat
  • Swim Squad Training
  • Year 3/4 girls' football tournament @ Len Forge - all day
  • Monday 6th - Bank Holiday Monday
  • Tuesday 7th - Lower School Healthy Eating Assembly
  • Adalah Care Home visit from 1pm
  • Wednesday 8th - Upper School Healthy Eating Assembly
  • Quad Kids @ Garon Park all day
  • Thursday 9th - Creative Dance Festival @ Alleyn Court from 12.30pm
  • Forest School club - session 6
  • Friday 10th - Swim Squad training
  • Year 3/4 tennis competition @ Garons from 9am
  • Year 5/6 tennis competition from 12.30pm
  • Monday 13th - Friday 17th - Year 6 SATs Week
  • Wednesday 15th - Year 3/4 tag rugby @ SRFC all day
  • Thursday 16th - Ilam Hall meeting for Year 6 parents @ 7pm
  • Year 5/6 Football friendly vs Fairways
  • Friday 17th - Swim Squad Training
  • Monday 20th - Friday 24th - Year 6 Awesome Art Week
  • Monday 20th - Bikeability Week (6A & 6W)
  • Tuesday 21st - Year 5 presentation to parents (5J & 5R) from 2pm
  • Wednesday 22nd - Swimming Gala @ Garons - 12.30pm - 3pm
  • Thursday 23rd - Year 5 presentation to parents (5K & 5F)
  • SEESMA Area rehearsals
  • Thursday 23rd - Mersea meeting for Year 4 parents @ 7pm
  • Friday 24th - Year 5 Poetry performance to school
  • Year 5/6 Rounders Competition
  • Monday 27th - Bank Holiday Monday
  • Tuesday 28th - Friday 31st - May Half Term

June 2024

  • Monday 3rd - INSET Day
  • Tuesday 4th - Friday 14th - Multiplication Tables Checks
  • Tuesday 4th - Bikeability Week (6D & 6P)
  • Adalah Care Home visit from 1pm
  • Wednesday 5th - Parent Council meeting @ 6pm
  • Monday 10th - Friday 14th Years 3, 4 & 5 Test Week
  • Monday 20th - Seesma rehearsal and concert @ Cliffs Pavillion
  • Tuesday 11th - Father David Lower School Assembly
  • Late Book Look (6pm - 7pm)
  • Wednesday 12th - Father David Upper School Assembly
  • Borough Sports - 12pm - 3pm
  • Thursday 13th - Friday 14th - Year 3 Residential to Danbury
  • Thursday 13th - Transition meeting for Year 4 parents (7.30pm)
  • Monday 17th - Music workshop Year 4
  • Tuesday 18th - Year 3 Induction Meeting for Year 2 parents from 7.30pm
  • Thursday 20th - SPSSA Southend Gotta Dance @ The Palace Theatre from 7pm
  • Sunday 23rd - Girls' Choir concert @ Plaza Centre from 3pm
  • Monday 24th - Friday 28th - Year 6 Residential to Ilam Hall and Southend Week
  • Tuesday 25th & Wednesday 26th - Year 6 Transition Day (King John)
  • Tuesday 25th - Super Sports (track) @ Garons from 4pm
  • Wednesday 26th - Super Sports (field) @ Garons from 4pm

July 2024

  • Tuesday 2nd - King John Transition morning
  • Adalah Care Home visit from 1pm
  • Wednesday 3rd - 3T & 3M Field Study
  • Friday 5th - Year 6 Transition Day
  • Year 3N & 3L Field Study
  • Monday 8th - Fun Swim Week
  • Wednesday 10th - Meet your new teacher day
  • Thursday 11th - Open Evening (4.30pm - 6pm)
  • Monday 15th - Year 6 House Team Swimming Gala
  • Tuesday 16th - Sports Morning
  • Friday 19th - Last Day of Term
  • No After School Club
  • Monday 22nd - INSET DAY

Year 3

This week, English lessons have been centred around our Brilliant Book, 'Journey' by Aaron Becker, where the main character embarks not only on a physical journey but also on a journey of self-discovery. We used this picture book to compose a first-person narrative, allowing the children to connect with the characters' emotions throughout their journey. We were thoroughly impressed with the descriptive language used by the children, which they further refined at the end of the week during the editing process.

In maths, the children have been advancing their skills in telling time on both digital and analogue clocks. We encourage you to use opportunities to practise telling time with your children and to engage them in activities that involve calculating the duration of time, such as determining what time you would need to leave for school.

In science this week, the children planned an investigation into the factors that affect a plant's growth. In their house teams, they enjoyed setting up the experiment and are aiming to measure the height of the plants to analyse their findings over the coming weeks.

During Connected Curriculum lessons, the children have been learning about the features of rivers and have been introduced to new vocabulary, including terms such as source, mouth, meander, and tributaries. They also explored the different courses of a river and the physical characteristics associated with each course.

Early morning work has focused on using our knowledge organisers to extract information about our new topic and to reinforce the vocabulary learned in science and Connected Curriculum lessons.

Year 4

It is hard to imagine that it is only the second week into this half term considering all the learning opportunities and wide ranging lessons the children have engaged with and enjoyed this week. In maths, we have been continuing with our learning about shape and space. The children have studied a wide range of polygons, recognising and naming them in relation to their properties including sides and angles. They have also reviewed their knowledge of regular and irregular polygons and investigated lines of symmetry. Each class has also spent time in the computer suite this week, in preparation for the upcoming Multiplication Tables Check.

A Midsummer Night’s Dream’ in English lessons has continued to excite and intrigue the children with its diverse characters and strange goings on. They have particularly focused on the magical elements in the story and designed an object with the power to alter the perception of its user. Using a wide range of figurative language and with an emphasis on the correct use of fronted adverbials, the children enjoyed writing a setting description including magical elements.

Science lessons involved the children building simple circuits with lights and buzzers and then learning how to draw these using the recognised and correct scientific symbols.

Our final term’s learning in Connected Curriculum lessons is centred around ‘All The Fun Of The Fair’. The children have been studying the development and changes in fairground rides over the past 100 years, commenting on the types of rides, how they have changed in regard to excitement level, entertainment and safety. They were also thrilled to be allowed to use the Lego WeDo to build and programme their own swinging chair ride. They worked collaboratively and with good humour and skill. Their creations can be seen on Showbie.

In PSHCE lessons, the children have considered how they can describe feelings of different intensity and the importance of using detailed language to express how they feel for health and well-being.

Year 5

The children enjoyed a great day at West Stow on Wednesday, immersing themselves in historical evidence from a reconstructed Anglo-Saxon village. It was wonderful to see the children making discoveries about the past by asking questions and exploring the many artefacts and interactive resources. West Stow has been an engaging hook into our ‘Sailing the Seven Seas’ theme as we move on to learning about the village life of the Anglo-Saxons.

Thank you to the parents and carers that supported us with this trip. Without the support that you all provide, we would not be able to deliver the opportunities that we do.

As scientists, we have been exploring the gestation periods of mammals. See if your child can name a few characteristics of mammals. From researching average gestation periods, the children have developed the scientific skill of exploring trends with data to draw conclusions. Their conclusions have focused on comparative statements generated by the data presented on a scatter graph. Next week, they will produce their very own scatter graph to embed their understanding of comparing data to draw scientific conclusions.

In English, we have continued to dive into our layered text, The Firework Maker’s Daughter, by reading about Lila’s journey to Mount Merapi. We have focused on the relationship between Lila and her father, Lalchand to write emotively in the form of a personal diary. The teachers have been highly impressed with the use of vocabulary as well as the children's emotive language choices to reflect the feelings of the characters.

Year 6

It has been a week full of wonderful and diverse learning opportunities for the Year 6 pupils. Beyond the regular focus on maths and English and development of their knowledge and understanding focused upon the upcoming SATs tests, they have experienced a wide array of learning across the curriculum.

As scientists, they have investigated whether there are clear links between height and lung capacity, focusing upon the gathering of data and interpretation, which is a complex skill due to the number of potential variables.

Within Connected Curriculum, the focus has been upon developing their understanding of the complex geo-political structure of The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, and how this is partly represented through the Union Flag. They have also considered the range of settlements across the country and how these can be classified. Following this, they also took on the challenging task of trying to identify all of the counties of England, which, for many adults living in England, would be a daunting task. Finally, as a part of their latest topic in Connected Curriculum, the children have selected a location from within the United Kingdom to study independently in further depth.

Reviewing the Situation

As many of you will be aware, the production of Oliver Junior, which culminated on Saturday last weekend was, by all accounts, a theatrical success.

The production team, and the wider staff are incredibly proud of the children’s achievements, and we sincerely hope that for many of them, this is the start of a longer journey in performing arts. Hopefully, the memories will last for a long time to come. Rather than waxing lyrical about each and every aspect of their performance, it may be useful to read the review from NODA (National Operatic and Dramatic Association) penned by Tessa Davies, Chair of NODA Youth Strategy Development, who was very positive in her praise for the show:

"This production, performed by the pupils of West Leigh Junior School, was interestingly different. Moved to modern day, the story was, essentially, the one we know and love, but given an interesting ‘twist’ by Director Mr Dunn.

I was extremely impressed by the entire cast, from the Principals right through to the Immersive Theatrical Group and it was good to see the inclusivity practised in setting this show. Every pupil was immersed in the production and there were some excellent and expressive performances from the ensemble.

To my regret I was only able to watch one group of Principals - I would have loved to have been able to see it again with the other group as I am sure they were just as strong with their performances.

I regret that there is not enough space for me to mention everyone by name, but I must compliment them all on their performances.

It really was a joy to watch this performance with its different ‘take’ on the scenery and setting. Some of the ways the Director had the cast overcome the limitations of the stage lighting was also impressive. I want to give my congratulations to everyone involved in the show.

It was a lovely way to end a week when I have also seen other youth productions, I am so pleased to see that musical theatre is in the safe hands of these young people. I look forward to the next production."

NODA owns the Intellectual Property Rights to the content of all show reports written by NODA Councillors, Reps and Assistant Reps.


On Friday 19th April, twelve children from Years 5 and 6 represented West Leigh in the Southend Aquathlon. The event consisted of a timed 100m swim followed by a 1km run. The children had a great time and got to show off their hard work and dedication. Both the boys’ and girls’ teams did incredibly well with both finishing 2nd as well as finishing 2nd as a whole team. Well done to all the children who took part and thank you to the parents for their support.


On Wednesday 17th April, we held a ‘Mini Tennis Festival’ at Westcliff Lawn Tennis Club. 115 pupils participated in the event and enjoyed an afternoon of tennis. At any one time, fifteen tie-break matches were in play!

Pupils were organised in to small groups to play ‘round robins’ so that all participants played a minimum of three matches (but most commonly 5 or 6). The format of each match was a ‘tie-break’ - the winner being the player to reach 5 points. Throughout the afternoon, there were some extremely close matches.

The pupils who won the most matches at the ‘round robin’ stage went on to play in the knock-out matches at the quarter-final, semi- final and final stage. Again, there were some very close matches, with many players only separated by one point.

Many congratulations are due to all the children from West Leigh for demonstrating excellent tennis skills, great sportsmanship and for being superb ambassadors for the school.

We are extremely grateful to Westcliff Lawn Tennis Club for allowing us to make use of the facilities. Our thanks are also sent to head coach Oli Mason, and his coaching team, Westcliff Lawn Tennis Club members, our parent helpers, and our West Leigh staff, who supported this event with such great enthusiasm. Without your involvement, it would not have been possible to run such a successful festival.

Online Safety

Long gone are the days where eBay and Amazon were the only means of buying quality items online. The rise of user-friendly, accessible shopping apps has meant that getting clothes, gadgets and other goodies delivered direct to your door can be accomplished with a few touches of your phone’s screen while you’re on the go.

These apps aren’t without their issues, however, and users still run the risk of scams, data breaches and other online safety concerns. Being aware of these dangers will go a long way to keeping your money and information safe, so you can still enjoy what these shopping apps have to offer. Our guide has some top tips to help protect young people on these purchasing platforms.

The National College and Online Safety

If you still need to sign up to the Online Safety portal, please follow the link https://nationalcollege.com/enrol/west-leigh-junior-school and add yourself as a parent.

Key Notices this Week

Uniform: We are pleased to announce that we have secured a new online uniform supplier. Myclothing.com can be used to order selected items of school uniform. They will embroider polo shirts, PE t-shirts and sweatshirts to order and aim to deliver in 3-5 days. Please use the following code for a 10% discount, valid from 15th July - 28th July: WEST_LEIGH_10%

Please click on the link below to view West Leigh Schools' page: https://myclothing.com/collections/west-leigh-schools-29145

School Street:

Inspirational Person

This half term, we have learned about the work of Nicholas Lowinger. At the age of five, he was inspired to help homeless people when he visited a shelter and realised that children had to wear used shoes, which often did not fit well. When he was seventeen, he set up 'Gotta Have Sole' - a charity delivering new shoes to homeless children. We were greatly inspired by his drive to change at such a young age, and his quote: "No one is ever too young or old to help others. Kids don’t always realise that they have the power to make a difference."

Last half term's Showbie challenge was a great success and many children were awarded prizes. This half term, the challenge is to design a pair of shoes to help Nicholas spread the word about his charity. There is a template in the 'Inspirational People' Showbie folder.

Dinner Menu

Week 3

Monday - Homemade Macaroni Cheese with Garlic Bread - Jacket Potato with Baked Beans, Cheese and Tuna Mayo - Granary Baguette with Cheese - Sweetcorn, Coleslaw and Salad Bar - Fresh Fruit, Yoghurt or Fruity Jam Doughnuts

Tuesday - Chicken Fajita with Tortilla Chips and Guacamole - Quorn/Vegetable Fajita with Tortilla Chips and Guacamole - Jacket Potato with Baked Bean, Cheese and Tuna Mayo - Vegetable Rice, Carrots and Salad Bar - Fresh Fruit, Yoghurt or Lemon Drizzle Sponge.

Wednesday - Roast Chicken with Yorkshire Pudding - Roast Quorn with Yorkshire Pudding - Granary Baguette with Tuna Mayo - Roast Potatoes, Green Beans and Salad Bar - Fresh Fruit, Yoghurt or Fruity Shortbread.

Thursday - Homemade Beef Spaghetti Bolognaise - Homemade Quorn Spaghetti Bolognaise - Jacket Potato with Baked Beans, Cheese and Tuna Mayo - Broccoli and Salad Bar - Fresh Fruit, Yoghurt or Sprinkle Cake.

Friday - Chicken Burger in a bun with optional salad and Mayonnaise - Vegetable Burger in a Bun with optional salad and mayonnaise - Wholemeal Wrap with Salmon and Sweetcorn - Potato Wedges, Sweetcorn - Homemade Coleslaw and Salad Bar - Fresh Fruit, Yoghurt or Ice Cream and Ice Lollies.

Don't forget to check out our new online bookshop here.


Please ensure that your child has their full kit with them on swimming days as we will no longer be phoning home for forgotten kits.


  • 3M - Mrs Millham
  • 4B - Mr Boylan
  • 3N - Mrs Nash & Mrs Mitchinson


  • 3L - Miss Playfair
  • 4G - Mrs Garrett & Mrs Nash
  • 4S - Miss Street


  • 3T - Mrs Thompson
  • 5K - Miss Chapman
  • 5R - Mrs Lewis


  • 6D - Miss Fletcher
  • 5J - Mrs Wilson
  • 5F - Mrs Flower


  • 6W - Mr Dunn
  • 4E - Mrs Rodger
  • 6P - Miss Poysden
  • 6A - Mrs Mears

PE Lessons

Please ensure that your child is wearing their full kit on PE days as we will no longer be phoning home for forgotten kits.

First Half Term:


  • Indoor PE - Wednesday
  • Outdoor PE - Friday


  • Indoor PE - Wednesday
  • Outdoor PE - Thursday


  • Indoor PE - Tuesday
  • Outdoor PE - Thursday


  • Indoor PE - Tuesday
  • Outdoor PE - Friday


  • Indoor PE - Tuesday
  • Outdoor PE - Thursday


  • Indoor PE - Monday
  • Outdoor PE - Wednesday


  • Indoor PE - Monday
  • Outdoor PE - Wednesday


  • Indoor PE - Monday
  • Outdoor PE - Thursday


  • Indoor PE - Friday
  • Outdoor PE - Tuesday


  • Indoor PE - Friday
  • Outdoor PE - Monday


  • Indoor PE - Friday
  • Outdoor PE - Tuesday


  • Indoor PE - Thursday
  • Outdoor PE - Monday


  • Indoor - Thursday
  • Outdoor - Monday


  • Indoor - Wednesday
  • Outdoor - Tuesday


  • Indoor - Thursday
  • Outdoor - Tuesday


  • Indoor - Thursday
  • Outdoor - Monday


Congratulations to 3M who achieved the best attendance this week and entertained the school with their lively attendance video which seems to have made the sun shine brightly for the rest of the day!

Team Points


The Most Improved in Sport Award goes to Emma Garrido in 4G.

Sports Performer of the Week Award goes to Emelie Salmon in 6P.

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