Friday, 6 October 2023

Fostering Balance

In assembly on Monday, we celebrated those pupils across the school who had been outstanding Risk-Takers during September; from trying new foods at lunch, presenting speeches to the whole school without notes, and overcoming fears in the swimming pool from some of our youngest pupils. We are incredibly proud of all the students in how they embrace our monthly Learner Profile.

During October, our focus is on being ‘Balanced’ and how we can achieve a balance in what we do, achieve and feel. In our Ad Vitam lessons, we have been discussing our emotions; learning to recognise how our actions affect our own emotions and that of others. This builds on from being Risk-Takers - feeling nervous or excited when trying something new, having a sense of achievement and pride in ourselves when we achieve a goal, or learning more about our own likes and dislikes. In striving to achieve ‘Balance’ we focus on the choices that we make in our lives and how this makes us feel. Indeed, when asked, pupils identified that spending time with their family and friends is central to feeling positive and achieving balance. This is no surprise, with the St Leonards community an integral part of our curriculum, supporting each student to grow into unique, confident, kind and happy individuals. As we welcome prospective families to school this weekend at our Year 1 to 13 Open Morning, we know that they will see first hand how special our pupils are and what an incredible place our school is - where ‘Ad Vitam’ is central to all that we do and pupils are prepared ‘For Life.’

Claire Robertson, Head of Junior School

Island of the Week

We have more joint winners this week, with Lewis and Skye coming out on top in the Island of the Week. The Island Captains of both Lewis and Skye enjoyed raising their flag on the flagpole - for Skye it was their first time this academic year, congratulations!

Year 1

Wobbly J-J-Jelly

Year 1 have been learning the letter ‘j’ this week and made some yummy jelly to help consolidate their learning. The pupils learned how they can take a solid, dissolve it in hot water to become a liquid, before it turning solid and wobbly when cooled in the fridge. The children were eager to try their j-j-jelly, so once set, they got stuck straight in!

Paper Bags

As part of Year 1’s current Unit of Inquiry, namely Materials, the pupils have been creating paper bags out of a piece of paper, string, sellotape, hole punch and scissors. Once they designed them and made them, they then had to test them to see if they could carry items around the classroom. Some made very strong bags, able to carry a bag full of dinosaurs!

The pupil’s paper bag results are below, testing their seal, handles, decoration and hold. Well done Year 1!

Daffodil Planting

Year 1 have had green fingers this week, planting daffodil bulbs for the Spring, and primroses and pansies for the Autumn in the school planter.

Rock Pooling

The rain didn’t dampen Year 1’s spirit as they headed down to the beach to search in the rock pools for crabs and other treasures. What a busy week Year 1 have had!

Year 2

Visit to Restaurant 1877

Going further with their Unit of Inquiry into Jobs in the School Community, Year 2 visited Darren in the school dining room this week to find out more about his job. Darren shared about how he goes out of his way to procure the ingredients for our school menus locally, in order to keep our carbon footprint down and minimise the damage to the environment. This then led to a conversation about Fish Fridays and how Darren only buys fish in from Scotland that is produced sustainably. From the conversation, Year 2 have now planned a trip down to the harbour to talk to a local fisherman, Anthony who fishes off his boat the Solaris, putting creels down to catch lobster, whilst adhering to the sustainable regulations set for the fishing community.

Leading on from their investigation, Darren gave them the opportunity to prepare fish goujons for their lunch, which was good fun. The children had to get togged up in plastic aprons and gloves before they could start, for hygiene purposes. They then lined up to dip fresh haddock into flour, then egg, then breadcrumbs, without getting covered in egg and breadcrumbs themselves. They were very excited as they were able to eat the fish for their lunch afterwards….delicious!

The children wanted to know all about Darren’s job as Head of Catering at St Leonards…

Hunter: What time do you wake up?
Darren: I wake up at 4.00am and leave the house at 5.00am, drive to work and start work at 5.45am, ready to do breakfast for the boarders.
Anya: What is your favourite part of your job and your least favourite?
Darren: Getting up so early is my least favourite part. Seeing your smiling faces, when you eat the food is my favourite part and doing fun things like today.
Andrew: How much food wastage is there?
Darren: The Junior School wastes 5-8 kg of food every day. That is a lot, so we want you only to take what you are going to eat and then you can always come back for more if you want. The Senior School wastes even more food.
Rian: What do you actually do in your job?
Darren: I run a team of chefs who cook for you. I create a menu for each meal. The menus change on a 3 week rolling programme. It is quite a challenge creating a menu that suits everyone, especially as we now have 38 nationalities at school. I taste the food before you eat it to make sure it tastes good and is not too spicy or salty. I do fun food things with children like today.
Poppy: How do you organise the cooking?
Darren: We have a board in the kitchen. Everyone is given jobs on the board, so they know what they are doing. Timing is very important, so that all the food is hot and laid out, ready to be served at lunchtime, when you arrive.

Year 3

Aim of the Game

As part of Year 3’s Unit of Inquiry on Inventions, the Year 3 children have been learning to write instructions for their very own game. They have invented a brand new game during their PE lessons with Miss Carroll. In class, they have worked together to carefully list what they will need, sequence their instructions using time conjunctions, apply 'bossy' verbs and clearly describe the aim of the game.

Their instructions will be put to the test next week in PE when the class will follow each other's to bring the games to life!

Harp Initiative

Year 3’s Harp Initiative is well under way. Ms Russell, their harp teacher, is delighted with the children’s progress so far and is looking forward to working with Year 3 for the rest of the Autumn Term!

Year 4

Transport Presentations

Year 4 have been presenting their Unit of Inquiry presentations this week. Working hard to research a particular mode of transport and learn about how they have changed throughout time. Excellent work Year 4!

Year 5

Power of a Magic Pencil

Continuing with their Unit on Rights and Responsibilities, Year 5 have been inspired to consider for themselves what they might do with the power of a magic pencil like Malala’s and why. Once they had gathered their thoughts, the children used their devices to write a report about the changes they would make, see below for some examples!

Exploring Activism

The children have begun to understand and explore activism, researching activists of past and present and considering whether they are always right. The children each chose an activist to further research and created a poster of their findings. Their thoughts, ideas and discussions have been both thought provoking, passionate and insightful - well done Year 5!

Year 6

Peer Presentations

Last week, Year 6 shared their Materials presentations with their peers. The children had to create a design for a structure, considering its purpose and choice of construction materials. The designs ranged from a snow globe village to planes, tractors, hotels and schools. The students then assessed the other groups on their presentation skills.

Resource Consumption

This week, Year 6 have started their new Unit of Inquiry on Natural Resources under the Transdisciplinary Theme of Sharing the Planet. The class learned about the population of the continents and their relative consumption of resources. The distribution and consumption of resources was demonstrated by grouping the class according to the relative population of each continent, and using chocolate to demonstrate consumption. The 11 children representing Asia were most unhappy to find that they had to share 2 pieces of chocolate between them, while the one child representing North America had 13 pieces of chocolate to themselves. Once the point had been made, the chocolate was then shared equally in the class!

Spotlight on Art

Self Portraits

Each pupil from Year 2 to Year 6 have been working with Miss Neave, Teacher of Art and Design, to create self portraits in Art. See below some of their outstanding finished pieces and see if you can spot who is who!

Risk Taker Certificates

Huge congratulations to the pupils in Years 1 to 6 who received Risk-Taker certificates this week for going above and beyond in displaying September’s Learner Profile Attribute. Whether they have explored new foods, made new friends, or tried a new activity, it has been wonderful to see their determination to embrace Risk-Taking.

Year 1 - James M and Sophia W
Year 2 - Rian M, Isabella G and Vania O
Year 3 - Noah B and Sofia Y
Year 4 - Alvin C
Year 5 - Dallan M, Rei K and Grace P
Year 6 - George C and Magnus D

Sporting Highlights

Scottish Women in Sports Week

In celebration of Scottish Women in Sports Week, our U12 Girls Hockey team competed in a Hockey Tournament at High School of Dundee. The girls had a fabulous afternoon displaying their determination and skill, winning 3-0 against Morrison’s Academy, 2-0 against Robert Gordon's College and equalising against Dollar Academy and Strathallan School. Huge congratulations girls! #SheCanSheWill

On the Pitch

Our U12 boys rugby team also competed in a rugby tournament at High School of Dundee this week. Despite the tough competition, the team rallied together and gave it their all!

Art and Play Camp

During the October Half Term, Pavla Neuschlova who ran our Imaginarium in the Summer Holidays, will be leading an Art and Play Camp at Strathkinness Primary School. For more information, please use the button below.