The Voice Of st leonards

Friday, 3 November 2023

Spreading Joy

It has been lovely to see the children returning to school this week with renewed energy and vigour, despite the wet and windy weather that has greeted us most days! We began the new half-term coming together for our weekly assembly where we thought about the power of kind words and the ability to spread joy and help our friends find balance in their emotions. Whilst paper origami cranes were the avenue to share these kind words, we quickly realised that we didn't need them and that simply taking the time to say something kind to someone else can have a huge impact on not only how they feel but how we feel ourselves!

I was asked this week by a Year 1 pupil, “Why do we need to come to school?”, which, I am sure, is a question that all of us have thought about at some point. This led to a great discussion for the whole of Year 1 together. “To learn how to read”, “to play with my friends”, “to see Mrs Beebee”, “to play games” and “to swim”, were just some of the suggestions; but the one that really stuck with me was “to learn everything about everything”. That is exactly what St Leonards is about, learning for life and all the skills that you need to thrive and be happy. This led us seamlessly onto our introduction of our Learner Profile Attribute that we are focussing on for the month of November - Knowledgeable! I can’t wait to observe, question, discuss and experience how our pupils embody this in the coming weeks and reflect on how we “learn everything about everything!”

Claire Robertson, Head of Junior School

Island of the Week

House Captain Isabella, raised the flag on behalf of Skye to celebrate being Island of the Week. Congratulations Skye!

Back to School

It was fantastic to welcome everyone back for the second half of the Autumn Term. We hope that pupils, staff and families had a restful break and are looking forward to the busy weeks ahead!

Year 1

Halloween Biscuits

Year 1 had a spooky Halloween baking bat biscuits with Miss Barclay! They enjoyed mixing up the ingredients into a frightening dough before rolling out and cutting into bat shapes! Once cooked in the cauldron they were dipped in devilish chocolate and sprinkles!

Half-Term Adventures

Year 1 had some exciting adventures during Half Term. From ice skating and zoo visits, to exploring animal parks in Tenerife, engaging in thrilling Horrible History boat tours in London, and exploring the beautiful landscapes of Skye. These are just a few examples of the many wonderful outings Year 1 have had.

Year 2

Lessons in the Library

Just before the October break, Year 2 ventured out to St Andrews Public Library as part of their Unit of Inquiry; Jobs in the Community. After walking through the town and spotting their favourite places to visit, they met with Pauline, the local librarian who taught them all about how the library works. They had a tour and she read them a story about a wolf who became a hero by getting a library card and reading lots of interesting stories and facts!

The aim of the visit was to show the children where the library is and to encourage them to use it to further develop their reading, research and self-management skills. All pupils had the opportunity to sign up for a membership card which will be delivered to the school by Pauline. We hope our pupils will use this resource and engage with the local community.

Pauline also gave the children colourful blank books and offered them the chance to make a display in the library of all of their own illustrated and written books. We look forward to seeing the children's wonderful creations!

Year 3

Frightening French

This week, Year 3 have been learning Halloween related vocabulary in French. They used their knowledge of numbers in French to say how many Halloween objects there were e.g. ‘il y a 3 lunes’ and ‘il y a 7 chats noirs’! They also used their artistic skills to design a haunted house in French and enjoyed singing a Halloween song about different spooky superheroes, tying in with Year 3's new Unit of Inquiry, Heroes.

The pupils have also been thinking about the characteristics of a superhero and have been describing a superhero's physical appearance in French. Well done Year 3, Miss Bradley is super impressed with all your hard work!

Year 4

Super Subtraction

This week, Year 4 have been using base materials to learn how to subtract using renaming. They were able to consolidate their learning using physical materials first and then put this into practice with their written work. Fantastic effort, Year 4!

Year 5

Rice Sale for Malawi

The last Friday before Half Term, fresh from the Fun Run, our Year 5 concluded their Unit of Inquiry about Rights and Responsibilities with their much anticipated Rice Sale. Their enthusiasm was boundless and their tactics persuasive, resulting in selling almost all of the rice. There are still two bags available if anyone would like one!

The sale of the 90kg of rice represents how much rice one farmer in Malawi needs to sell in order to live sustainably for a year, including sending one child to secondary school. The proceeds will go to True Origin who work directly with Malawian farmers to help ensure they can live in a sustainable way. Thank you to all parents and families for supporting their initiative.

Epic Explorers

Year 5 have begun their new Unit of Inquiry - Exploration. They took part in their very own expedition on Tuesday in order to appreciate the challenges that explorers face. To begin with, they had to earn 'gold coins' which they could then use to buy provisions for their adventure. Using tarpaulins, poles and ropes they constructed shelters which had to protect them from ‘Storm Majcher’, fortunately they all stayed dry! Their next challenge was to build and light a fire - one team chose to buy only one match which was a mistake. To reward them for their efforts marshmallows were distributed and toasted!

Year 6

Prime Time

In Maths, Year 6 has been exploring square and cube numbers, as well as the concept of prime numbers. This involved investigating the connection between odd and square numbers. They took an active approach, arranging themselves in the shape of odd numbers and square numbers in the playground; and discovered that adding successive odd numbers gives us square numbers. The students then demonstrated their understanding by drawing diagrams and writing explanations. Additionally, the class tackled the concept of prime decomposition and discovered that every non-prime or composite number can be made by multiplying a unique set of prime numbers. Excellent work, Year 6!

Arabic Club

The first Arabic Club was this week with Miss Bradley. The pupils learnt new sounds and started learning the alphabet in Arabic. The first club focused on greetings and introducing yourself in Arabic. The students had a great time practising and asking "what is your name", and had a go at writing "my name is". They finished the first lesson by dancing to the alphabet song! Arabic Club will run every Monday after school and is open to any Junior School pupils.

Class Representatives

At the end of Half Term, the Class Representatives were elected for each year group. As a Class Rep, the pupils will represent their peers on the Pupil Council and will meet with key members of the school. During the first Pupil Council meeting the children will be able to discuss their views about the timetable as well as have the opportunity to risk assess and add input to the play areas. Please join us in congratulating Alex, Andrew, Maggie, Clodagh, Luna, Isobel, Bonnie, Emma and Michelle!

Island Fun Run

Years 1 to 6 celebrated the end of last term with an Island Fun Run! The students sported their Island colours while racing around the school grounds. They were awarded Island points for every lap they completed and the final scores are below:

  • 1st - Skye - 345 laps
  • 2nd - Mull - 260 laps
  • 3rd - Harris - 258 laps
  • 4th - Lewis - 254 laps

A huge well done to everyone who took part!