Friars Weekly Newsletter friday 10th may 2024

Coming up in this edition of the newsletter...

  • An appeal to name all clothing
  • Year 6 reminder about the SATs Breakfast next week
  • Nursery Beach Visit Report
  • Portico Music Event Report

A lovely week comes to an end and hasn’t it been lovely to bask in some warm sunshine for a change? We have certainly enjoyed being outdoors this week.

Some of our Nursery children enjoyed their visit educational visit to the beach on Tuesday. A great time was had by all and a big thank you to all of the adults involved. A busy week too for the Year 5 children as they travelled to London to experience the Tower of London. Again, it was a very successful trip but I did hear there was a little bit of complaining from the children about the amount of walking they had to do. Off with their heads? No, maybe not… 😊

Next week is a very important week for Year 6 as it is the SATs Week. The SATs mark the culmination of all of the children’s hard work in reading, grammar, punctuation, spelling and maths - and we know they will do well. As long as you try your best Year 6 you should feel very proud. Make sure you have a restful weekend and good luck for Monday!

Have a really lovely weekend everyone!

Mr. McClay, Principal

Naming Clothing

With the warmer weather, we have seen an increase this week of children removing jumpers, cardigans and coats... and then leaving them around the school. We obviously support the children to look after their belongings but it really helps if everything is named. Please over the weekend, can we ask for everyone to check that uniform and coats are all named. Thank you.

Diary Dates


  • Monday 13th - Thursday 16th - KS2 SATs Week
  • Tuesday 14th - Nursery Beach Visit
  • Friday 17th - National Numeracy Day
  • Monday 20th - Friday 24th - Year 6 Isle of Wight Residential & Southend Week
  • Junior Music Festival Rehearsals
  • Tuesday 21st - Nursery Beach Visit
  • Wednesday 22nd - Nursery Sports Day
  • Thursday 23rd - Reception Sports Day
  • Monday 27th - BANK HOLIDAY MONDAY
  • Tuesday 28th - Friday 31st - May Half Term


  • Monday 3rd - INSET Day
  • Tuesday 4th - Class photos
  • Tuesday 4th - Friday 7th - Science Week
  • Wednesday 5th - Drumming Workshop
  • Thursday 6th - Final swimming lesson
  • Reception Education Visit to Hyde Hall
  • Monday 10th - Friday 14th - Phonic Screening Week
  • Monday 10th - PTA Father's Day Sale (during school day) - Children can bring into school £1.50 per gift
  • Junior Music Festival
  • Tuesday 11th - PTA - Father's Day Sale (after school - KS1 and KS2 Gates)
  • KS2 Borough Sports
  • Wednesday 12th - Friday 14th - Year 5 Thriftwood Residential
  • Thursday 13th - First swimming lesson for 1MV
  • Monday 17th - Year 3 Education Visit to Colchester Castle
  • Tuesday 18th - Nursery Beach Visit
  • Wednesday 19th - PTA Inflatable event
  • Thursday 20th - Clean Air Day
  • Friday 21st - World Music Day
  • KS1 3 Tees Cricket
  • Wednesday 26th - KS1 Sports Day and Picnic
  • KS2 Picnic and Sports Day
  • Friday 28th - KS1 Borough Sports


  • Wednesday 3rd - Friday 5th - Art and D&T Festival at Friars
  • Wednesday 3rd - Parents Open Evening
  • Thursday 4th - KS1 & KS2 Mini Games
  • Friday 5th - Year 6-7 Transition Day
  • Monday 8th - Year 3 & 4 YMCA Songwriting workshop
  • Tuesday 9th - School Nurse presentation to parents
  • Thursday 11th - Final swimming lesson for 1MV
  • Friday 12th - PTA Summer Fayre
  • Thursday 18th - Y6 Leavers Assembly 9:15am-10:00 (KS2 Hall)
  • Friday 19th - Last Day of Term
  • Monday 22nd - INSET DAY


  • Monday 3rd June 2024
  • Monday 22nd July 2024
"I love seeing my friends at Friars" Year 1 child


Such a busy week for Nursery, they should all sleep well by the end of this week (staff certainly will). The afternoon children had their first beach visit which was a great success. We started looking for shells but their own interests took over and children spent time building sandcastles, hunting different sized pebbles and throwing pebbles into the sea. We would like to say a massive shoutout to those children who walked both ways, you did a great job.

Back in Nursery we have also had two sessions of outdoor learning. The children always enjoy exploring the outdoor environment and collected leaves for a leaf rubbing activity.

REMINDER: The next beach trip will be on Tuesday 14th May (for afternoon children). As the tide will be out, we will take some children onto the mud to look for marine life. Please supply wellies if your child would like this.

The morning sessions will now start on Tuesday 11th June for three weeks (not 4th June due to school photographs).

Letters sent home this week (via ParentPay)


Reception have made the most of the warmer weather this week as we noticed so many changes in the garden over the bank holiday. Much has grown and many more insects have been spotted.

In PE we concentrated on improving our core strength, recognising how we have used it since learning to sit up, crawl, walk and now we are using it to balance. We balanced as bridges in different ways and then with partners.

We have been reading longer words in phonics this week, learning to chunk them and blend each chunk separately (pic/nic) making it feel a lot less daunting to read.

Letters sent home this week (via ParentPay)

Year 1

This week we have introduced the children to halving. They have found half of various shapes and quantities, explained how they know something is half, or not half and started to solve simple problems using halves. In their writing, the children have extended sentences using the words, ‘and’, ‘or’, ‘but’ and ‘so’.

In science we have sorted manmade and natural materials. Over the course of this half term, the children are creating an African sunset picture. Using a range of skills including; blending paints, tracing, drawing, cutting and sticking

Letters sent home this week (via ParentPay)

Year 2

We work so hard in Year 2! This week we focused on Ernest Shackleton again in English and wrote some interesting biographies. We had to make sure we wrote in past tense, used appropriate pronouns and used factual and technical language. In maths we finished our current topic on fractions with revision of halves, quarters, thirds and whole numbers. Next we will be moving on to time. In music we are learning to sing a wonderful song about friendship and we are great at finding the pulse of the music and keeping in time. In PE, we practised our throwing and batting skills and in geography we had fun looking at the physical and human features in Antarctica.

REMINDER: Please remember our school trip is on the 22nd June. Please make sure you have sent your payments which also confirms your permission for them to attend with us. Please also note, our PE days are now Tuesday and Friday.

Letters sent home this week (via ParentPay)

Year 3

Another extremely busy week here for us in Year 3!

In English we have been looking at inverted commas used in direct speech between characters from our story. During maths we have started to look at telling time to 5 minutes, this included looking at the use of Roman Numerals on the clock face.

In the afternoons we learnt about the xylem, phloem and transpiration in plants and the chemical processes used to grow.

We have researched how the Roman soldiers helped to expand the Roman Empire and the types of armour and weapons used.

Lastly, we had a fantastic lesson cooking and creating our very own pizzas! What a delicious and fun way to the end the week!

Letters sent home this week (via ParentPay)

Year 4

Adverbials and fronted adverbials were the main focus in English for Year 4 this week. This is in preparation for our narrative writing next week, where the end result will be the children writing the beginning of a story based on their layered reading book, ‘Kensuke’s Kingdom.’ During this writing, they will be expected to use adverbial phrases and fronted adverbials so that their writing is descriptive and hooks the reader.

The children had their first experience of building electrical circuits. They had to look at a picture of circuit, predict whether the circuit was complete (would work) or incomplete (wouldn’t work) and then build the circuit to see if their prediction was correct – easier said than done but the children worked very hard to be successful.

In French, the children have been learning to say at what times things happen and in PHSE, the children are continuing to build on their knowledge of how to stay safe online – a subject that is so important and necessary.

Together with art, RE, geography and rounders on Friday, Year 4 will never have time to be bored!

Letters sent home this week (via ParentPay)

Year 5

The highlight of our week was our trip to the Tower of London. Firstly, we must say how extremely well behaved the children were. Members of the public complimented staff on how well the students conducted themselves. We headed straight to the crown jewels which was the highlight for many. Some also braved the Salt Tower which is known to be the most haunted area. All in all, we thoroughly enjoyed ourselves and came away with lots of extra historical knowledge.

In science, we continued looking at life cycles and focused on those of birds and reptiles who lay eggs. We labelled the parts of an unfertilised chicken egg and learnt about the purposes of each part.

English has seen us writing newspaper reports about the Battle of Bosworth which the children previously re-enacted in a history lesson.

To end the week, we worked on angles around a point and on a straight line in maths. In fact, their homework continues this and the children will use their knowledge of 360 degrees in a full turn.

REMINDER: 5BW have outdoor learning next week on Monday and Tuesday and 5A have it on Thursday and Friday. Children must come dressed appropriately for the expected weather

Letters sent home this week (via ParentPay)

Year 6

This week, Year 6 have been learning about a range of topics in their maths. They have been using charts, graphs and diagrams to interpret data. They have been solving missing number problems and including equations and formulae.

In English, they have been using reading comprehension skills to explain vocabulary choices and develop more in-depth answers to inference questions.

In science, they have been palaeontologists – deciding what information you can tell from fossil evidence and how animals have evolved over time to adapt to their environments.

In Music, they have been playing the notes they learnt last week in their song for this term. In French, they have been structuring sentences to talk about methods of transport.

Next week is obviously SATs Week! Good luck to all of the children from the Year 6 staff team. Have a very restful weekend to prepare yourselves for the tests.

REMINDER: Please, if possible, send your child along to the SATs Breakfast across Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday. The children should head to the Key Stage 2 gate for 8:00am. A free breakfast will be provided and it will be a lovely, settled way to start the day. Please ensure that if your child is not coming to the SATs Breakfast that they are definitely in school by 8:45am at the very latest. Last year, almost all of the children came to the SATs Breakfast so we expect to see large numbers once again. Thank you to Mrs. Stephens for cooking for us.

Letters sent home this week (via ParentPay)

"I can't believe we created our own games - I want to do this for my job" Year 6 child


In computing this week, Year 2 considered what an attribute is when collecting data and created pictograms according to a chosen attribute.

Year 4 had great fun creating a step-counter using a Microbit. After programming their Microbit, they went out to the playground to see who could do the most steps. A few children realised that just waving their arms would trigger the sensor to add a step, without having to move from the spot! That might be cheating...!

Year 5 did some work on e-safety this week and looked at online bullying. They learnt how to identify online bullying and how banter that may often start off as harmless can also be a form of bullying.

Year 6 have continued with their Excel learning and discovered how to create a formula that includes a range of cells and how to apply a formula to multiple cells by duplicating it. They have also learnt about the sigma button and can use it to find a total/average.

Online Safety

Exam stress – sometimes referred to as test anxiety – is of course a long-running issue for children and young people. Many experts have suggested that the enforced break to traditional testing during the pandemic (specifically the relative lack of familiarity with exam situations) has exacerbated this problem for those who are currently in education.

The possible impact of exam stress on children’s mental, emotional and physical wellbeing is difficult to overstate – and students’ need for support is seldom greater than during these periods of their academic life. Our guide offers you ten practical tips for helping young people to manage exam stress and minimise its potentially detrimental effects.

"It was great to win my event at the Borough Sports - I felt so proud" - Year 5 pupil

PE and Sport

Athletics has really started to take shape with classes practicing for a range of events. This week there has been a lot of relay running and throwing events going on in preparation for sports days and Borough Sports competitions.

Please ensure earrings are not worn or can be removed for sports as children cannot take part while wearing them.

I've learnt so many new things but its different from normal school work because its 'life' things- Year 6 child

Outdoor Learning

In Nursery we have also had two sessions of outdoor learning. The children always enjoy exploring the outdoor environment and collected leaves for a leaf rubbing activity.

Next week it is time for Year 5! Monday and Tuesday 5BW will be working outside and on Thursday and Friday it's 5A's turn! Mr. Brady informs us the weather may not be great so please make sure you check the forecast beforehand and send your child dressed to learn outside whatever the weather.

Nursery's Beach Visit

The Nursery children enjoyed our own beach school this week and will be going to East Beach on a weekly basis this summer to learn all about the coastal environment and, of course, have some fun with their friends.

Visiting places like the beach helps children to connect with nature, inspire their curiosity and unleash their creativity.

The children brought along their bucket and spades to the beach and were encouraged to make enquiries on the coastal ecosystem, discover about marine life and take their learning beyond the classroom. Activities this term may range from creating beach art, finding limpets or crabs, sorting shells, organising seaweed, flying kites and decorating pebbles. Not forgetting good old-fashioned building sandcastles.

Portico Music Event

On Thursday 2nd May, children from across the Portico Trust were brought together in the first trust wide music workshop. The children came from Years 1 to 4, spanning the ages 6–9 years old. With kind permission from David Stanley at The Music Man Project, they worked together, under the direction of teachers Sandra Baines and Nina Bemister, to create a version of the beautiful song Peace and Hope using tuned percussion instruments and a small but perfectly formed choir. The shared outcome was very uplifting and we hope that this will be the first of many music workshops whereby the children from across the trust can gather together to make music, explore ensemble work and perform together.

Singing Assemblies

KS2 with Ms. Taylor-Brown

There was no singing assembly this week as Miss Taylor-Brown was very busy elsewhere in the school. We are having a break from singing assembly for the next couple of weeks but watch this space at the beginning of next half-term.

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Dinner Menu

Week 2

Monday - Pork Sausage with Mashed Potato & Gravy - Vegan Sausage with Mashed Potato & Gravy - Pasta & Tomato Sauce - Cheese Sandwich - Ham Salad Wrap - Sweetcorn & Baked Beans - Chocolate Rice Krispie Cake

Tuesday - Chicken & Sweetcorn Pasta - Vegan Sweet & Sour Vegetables with Steamed Rice - Baked Jacket with Grated Cheese - Egg Mayonnaise Sandwich - Cheese Salad Wrap - Carrots & Broccoli - Mandarin Jelly

Wednesday - Honey Roast gammon with Roast Potatoes & Gravy - Sweet chilli Stir-fry mushroom & Vegetable Noodles - Wholewheat Pasta & Tomato Sauce - Cheese & Tomato Bloomer - Ham Sandwich - Seasonal Greens & Peas - Vanilla Ice Cream

Thursday - FAVOURITES DAY - Boston BBQ Chicken Wrap - Margherita Pizza - Baked Potato with Baked Beans - Baked Wedges - Baked Beans and Peas - Chocolate Sponge with Chocolate Sauce

Friday - Breaded Fish Fingers with Chips & Ketchup - Vegan Fajita Wrap with Chips & Ketchup - Pasta & Tomato Sauce - Egg Mayonnaise Sandwich - Ham Salad Baguette - Peas & Baked Beans - Lemon Drizzle Sponge

Freshly Baked Bread - Garlic & Herb or Wholemeal Bread

OPAL Update

A bit of a short OPAL week! With a Bank Holiday and an educational visit meaning we could not do our usual mixing - our OPAL time has been a bit less than usual. Thank you to my usual bunch of OPAL Play Rangers we have almost sorted out the KS1 loose parts storage unit and are getting ready to move onto the KS2 one! Watch this space!

Big thank you to everyone for the brilliant donations! We are still looking for:

  • Baby dolls
  • Baby doll prams and buggies
  • Barbies
  • Balls

If you can help let me know!


Some exciting developments and some summer fun is being planned! Watch. This. Space!

Celebration Assembly

The links for our Celebration Assemblies can be found below.

10th May 2024

3rd May 2024

26th April 2024

19th April 2024


In Key Stage 1 we had outright winners in the form of 1MV… well done 1MV!

In Key Stage 2 we had the unusual situation of seeing a three-way tie. 3B, 4D and 6L all had the same percentage. It is a long time since we had such a thing happen - in fact we can’t remember when the last time was – that is how unusual it is. Well done to all three classes.

Last week there were only two teams above the 800-point barrier and this week it’s all four! The points are totting up quickly in 2024!

In Key Stage 1 this week, Windsor won comfortably but in Key Stage 2 honours were shared between Caernarfon and Stormont. Overall, we now have a 19-point gap between first and second and only 38 points separating everyone.

With only two weeks until the half-term break, will Windsor still be leading going into the final half-term?


In July we are hoping to host some career events for our children. We are looking for parents/carers/family members or friends who would like to come and talk to our children about ut their jobs. Think you can help or know someone who can? Please drop me a line

01702 294837 -