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Our School Year 2020-2021

Autumn Term 1

 

Welcome!

 

We were delighted to be able to welcome all children back to Ashbrook School in September. We were looking forward to getting to know our new children and to see our children in Reception and Year One move into their next year group.

 

We had a wonderful first day with the children in Year One and Year Two! The children had smiles on their faces all day, they listened really carefully and played beautifully together. They all looked super smart, something that we really value and that supports the children with managing the expectations of their behaviour and having the right focus to learn.

 

Reception children and parents had zoom meeting on 3 & 4 September, to give them a chance to meet their child’s class teacher before starting on Monday 7 September. We were so proud of our new children. They all settled in really well on Monday and it was lovely to finally meet them all in person.

 

We had an exciting half term with lots of great learning opportunities

  • Thursday 1 October was National Poetry Day. To celebrate this day, children were invited to bring their favourite poem into school to share with their class.
  • As part of their topic, children in Year 1 had ‘Apple Day’ on Tuesday 13 October. Children in Giraffes and Zebras classes learned how to make apple crumble and then had the opportunity to eat it at school.
  • We were excited to have a company called Sports Cool come into school on Friday 16 October to deliver extra-curricular PE lessons to all of the children at Ashbrook.  The children stayed in their bubbles and coaches conformed to social distancing guidelines at all times.
  • We also launched Bug Club to support and engage children with their reading at home. We have been thrilled with the positive response from our children and they are thoroughly enjoying reading their specially chosen books. Each week, one child from every class was awarded ‘Star Reader’ for their engagement with Bug Club and successful interaction and completion of the online reading quizzes. We are very proud of all our star readers!
  • In Year 2, children learned about explorers past and present and went on to design, make and evaluate their very own moon buggies! We were very impressed with the children’s knowledge as to what to include on the moon buggies as well as their creativity and imagination in selecting appropriate materials to make them out of. The children learnt to construct axles and wheels to ensure their moon buggies had a moving mechanism.

 

 

Hello Yellow

  • To celebrate World Mental Health Day, and raise money for the charity YoungMinds, children and staff took part in ‘Hello Yellow’ on Friday 9 October. Everyone wore something yellow and had fun participating in wellbeing activities throughout the day.

Harvest Festival – Food Bank Collection

  • Due to success in previous years, we collected a variety of non-perishable food to give to our local Food Bank for Harvest Festival. Parents were extremely generous with their donations and this was a great way for us to support our local community.

 

Name our New Partnership Competition

  • In celebration of our new closer working relationship with the schools in Two Mile Ash and Great Holm, we invited pupils, parents and staff to take part in a competition to name our new partnership.

 

The winning entry was PATH

Partnership

Ashbrook

Two Mile Ash

Holmwood

Autumn Term 2

Children in Need / Five to Thrive

We all know how important it is to look after ourselves and each other. That’s why this year for Children In Need, we put wellbeing at the heart of our activities.

 

On Friday 13 November, children and adults were asked to ‘wear something that makes you happy’ and we also followed the ‘Five to Thrive’ campaign.

 

Led by Joe Wicks, Dr Radha and Blue Peter, Five to Thrive is a unique programme of wellbeing activities for a whole celebration week. Inspired by the 5 Ways to Wellbeing, it’s designed to help children feel better about themselves – as well as helping others. It was a super fun week full of activities to boost the children’s physical and mental wellbeing and we raised £176 for Children in Need.

 

Nursery Rhyme Week - 16-20 November

Children in Reception took part in World Nursery Rhyme Week which promotes the importance of nursery rhymes in early childhood development and education with a particular focus on how nursery rhymes boost early language and literacy skills.  The activities throughout the week covered “The Wheels on the Bus”, “5 Little Speckled Frogs”, “Hickory Dickory Dock”, “Old MacDonald” had a Farm” and “Miss Polly had a Dolly”. 

 

PJ Day

The Friends of Ashbrook kindly offered to organise a Christmas Raffle to help to raise funds for Ashbrook to purchase equipment and resources to provide a richer learning experience for all the children.

 

Children and staff had a ‘PJ Day’ on Friday 27 November and brought in a donation for the Christmas raffle. Children and parents were extremely kind and with their generous donations. We had six amazing hampers packed full of fantastic goodies, a voucher for Mead Farm, a voucher for Maisies and a voucher for Treat St!

Christmas Card Competition

Iain Stewart, MP for Milton Keynes South, invited all the children at Ashbrook School to take part in a Christmas card competition. The winning illustration will make up his collection of Christmas cards that will be sent to his family, friends, and Parliamentary colleagues.

 

Runners up received a prize from the House of Commons Gift Shop and everyone who took part received a thank you letter from Iain Stewart.

Despite the pandemic, we did not want the children’s experience of Christmastime to be diluted. For us, it is about creating special memories for them.

 

Our Reception team placed the children into small teams to take part in a role play of the Christmas story.  The story was shared in school and the children dressed in their costumes. Each child was photographed within their group and the photos were sent home to parents

 

Children in KS1 participated in a ‘Creative Christmas’.  They had the opportunity to celebrate Christmas using arts and crafts. They used a variety of different techniques to create some beautiful pieces which they took home to display proudly.

 

On Friday 11 December we all put our Christmas jumpers on and brought in a donation for Save the Children.  Children made Christingle oranges and we all had a zoom Christingle assembly together. Then on 16 December, all children and staff had Christmas dinner together within their bubbles.

 

The Friends of Ashbrook organised for all the children to have a Christmas party via Zoom on Thursday 17 December.  Captain Fantastic hosted the party and the children had a wonderful, time being entertained with fun, magic and games.

 

Then on the last day of term, we had Christmas party day and a very special visitor appeared with gifts for the children.

Spring Term 1

 

Staying Connected

To run alongside our remote learning, zoom meetings and to enable us to keep our children and parents connected whilst in the third lockdown, we started ‘fun activity of the day’ on our Ashbrook facebook page.  Each day we shared an idea of something creative that the children could make or do at home, whether they were keyworker children in school, or they were staying at home.  We then shared photos of children engaging in our 'activity of the day' and any other fun activities that they had participated in throughout the week. 

 

We also worked with Holmwood School on a shared theme post for each day of the week, which we have continued daily: Motivation Monday, Treat Tuesday, Wellbeing Wednesday, Thankful Thursday and Fun Fact Friday.

Reading in Unusual Places Competition

In mid-January we launched a competition for the children to send in a picture of themselves reading in an unusual place in their home or garden.

 

Who would have thought you could read in the fridge, in the sink, on a treadmill, upside down, in a bag or hanging from a tree?

 

Congratulations to our winners who each received a book.  We wonder where they will read them!

Mrs Cursley’s Spring Clean Challenge

Mrs Cursley set everybody a spring clean challenge over the half term.

 

Our winner worked very hard with her spring cleaning and her bedroom looked spotless! We also had a winner from our Ashbrook staff team. Mrs Moore worked very hard to clear out her conservatory and give it a much needed spring clean.

Spring Term 2

 
World Book Day
We all had so much fun, in school and at home, dressing up for World Book Day on Thursday 4 March. There were some fantastic costumes and it was very difficult for us to choose one winner from each class!
 
Congratulations to our lucky winners, who each received a special book.

Welcome Back Everyone!

We were so pleased to have all our smiling, happy children back together again on Monday 8 March and really enjoyed welcoming them back! We all had a wonderful day.

Red Nose Day

On Friday 19 March the whole school took part in Red Nose Day.  We all wore something red and brought in a donation for Comic Relief.  Together, we raised £131.02.

Clap for our Unsung Heroes
On Tuesday 23 March the whole school participated in the ‘Clap for unsung heroes within schools and the wider community’
 
To recognise this day, the children made and wore super hero masks and we all socially distanced on the playground to observe a minute’s silence, then clapped celebrate the unsung heroes within schools and the wider community.
Easter Egg Surprise
Children in Reception had a lovely surprise! We had a very special delivery!
 
Thank you very much to Heritage & Sons, who kindly donated an easter egg for each of the children in Leopards and Elephants classes.

Summer Term 1

 

Our New Reception Resources

We were so excited to welcome the children back after Easter! We had lots of new things to share in our EYFS spaces and couldn't wait for the children to explore it all!

It was an absolute joy to see our Reception children having so much fun playing at our new fake pond area!

Leo the Lizard
Children in Leopards and Elephants classes were very excited to have a special visitor. Mrs Watkins brought in her pet leopard gecko called Leo.
 
The leopard gecko is a medium sized lizard which lives in northern India and Afghanistan. It has moveable eyelids and 100 teeth, which are replaced every 3 months!
 
Leo is 16 years old and loves sunshine.

Ashbrook After School Club

Our Ashbrook After School Club children had lots of fun creating artwork for the display board and making ASCobot, the After School Club robot!

Reading Stars Competition
We were very excited to launch our new 'Reading Stars' competition!
 
We have two Reading Stars per class each week, based upon their reading habits. This includes reading at home, filling out of reading records, using Bug Club at home, as well as reading progress in school and reading for pleasure.
 
Our Reading Stars have the opportunity to delve into the treasure chest to choose a book to keep. The children’s names then go into a grand prize draw, which will be drawn at the end of the summer term, for a chance to win a grand reading prize!

Reception Superheroes Day

On 4 May, as part of our Superheroes topic, we celebrated how we are all superheroes by being unique, by having a Superheroes Day.

 

We invited children in Leopards and Elephants classes, to come to school dressed as a Superhero.  They could come as their favourite, famous Superhero, or they could choose to design and wear their own Superhero costume.   We had been designing capes and masks in school.

 

We also had super staff and super parents!

Year 2 School Council

Congratulations to our Year 2 Student Council. Children in Tigers and Lions classes voted for 3 candidates from each class. Well done everyone!

Ashbrook Royals

This half term, we relaunched our 'Ashbrook Royals'.  Two children from each class were selected for displaying consistent exemplary behaviour, exceeding our expectations.  Well done everyone!

NSPCC Number Day

On Friday 7 May the whole school took part in NSPCC Day.  We all wore something with a number on it and enjoyed participating in number based activities.  Together we raised £138.25 for NSPCC.

An Expected Visitor

After checking our CCTV footage children in Reception discovered that they had had a very noisy, very large visitor before school opened this morning! Maybe our visitor knew that children in Elephants and Leopards classes were learning all about dinosaurs and wanted to join in the fun? Or maybe it was looking for somewhere to lay it’s eggs?

Our Unexpected Visitor

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As well as discovering our special visitor on our CCTV, look what else our children in Reception classes found!

Police Visit

We were very lucky to have a whole school visit from two of our local police officers. They took the time to talk to all of the children and answer their questions. They also kindly donated a special book for each year group called PC Ben. PC Ben tells the story of a police constable called Ben and the many lives he gets to help every day while out on patrol.

Year 2 Roman Mosaic Tiles

Our Year 2 children learned all about Romans in their history lessons. Look at these beautiful mosaic tiles that they made in their DT lessons, as part of their Roman topic!

Maisie Meerkat's Challenge

Year 1 launched 'Maisie Meerkat's Challenge'. When 5 challenges have been completed, children win a Maisie Meerkat finger puppet. For example, to write a sentence independently.  Well done Year 1 – we are all very proud of you, Maisie is especially proud!
Pyjamarama
On Friday 14 May the whole school took part in Pyjamarama.  We all had a wonderful day, we wore our pyjamamas, brought a donation for the Book Trust and took part in lots of activities around books and reading. Together we raised £96.50 for Book Trust.

Ashbrook Butterflies

Children in Leopards class released our first Ashbrook butterfly into the wild.

Butterly Release

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Our Reading Chair
Our Reading Stars board is filling up fast. Well done everyone for your super reading! We can't wait to hear you read in our special reading chair.
The Dinosaur Returns
Children in Leopards and Elephants class were extremely excited to see that our large, noisy visitor had returned over the weekend and made lots of mess in their shared area, crashing about and swishing it’s very long tail!
 
We asked the children why they thought it might have come back. They thought that it might have been lonely and wanted to play with the children and their toys, it wanted to learn about shapes and numbers, it came into school because it was warm, to stay dry, in case it rained, or it wanted to find somewhere to lay it’s eggs?

Dinosaur Returns

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After having a good look around in their area, the children in Reception discovered that they were right! The Trex was looking for somewhere to lay it's eggs. Look what they found!
 
They decided it would be a good idea to put some notices up for the Trex to read, in case it visits them again.
Jewels in the Jar Treat
We were delighted that children in Zebras and Giraffes classes had been working very hard and had earned their 'jewel in the jar' treat. Well done Year 1!
 
The children voted for a party in the hall to celebrate. They played party games and had squash and popcorn!
 

More Dinosaur Eggs

Children in Reception were delighted to find some more dinosaur eggs in their outdoor area. They had lots of fun, very carefully helping the baby dinosaurs hatch from their frozen eggs using special hammers!

Summer Term 2

 We were really excited to be able to open our forest fun area, where we will all be able to enjoy our outdoor learning!

Everyone Matters, Everyone is Important
 
Mrs Cursley held a competition to see how our families can creatively represent our school motto – ‘Everyone matters, everyone is important’. It means a great deal to us in school and we have been thinking carefully about what it looks like day to day, but what does this mean to you and your family as a member of our school community?
 
It could be an image, a photo/film, a drawing, a poem, a model or even an animation – it can be represented in any way you choose. We were all really looking forward to seeing our motto come to life!
 
Riaan has been enjoying helping to shop, cook and prepare meals for the homeless in Milton Keynes. He made this video for our school motto competition ‘everyone matters, everyone is important’.
 
Thank you so much! We would like to help and support you in any way we can.
Concrete Cows
 
As part of their art lessons, children in Year 1 have been learning about the artist, Liz Leyh, who created sculptures around Milton Keynes, including the famous concrete cows.
 
They have made their own field full of concrete cows made out of clay. Well done Year 1 they look amazing!
Can you see your house?
 
Children in Year 1 have been looking at the local area in their Geography lessons. Thank you so much to Emily and her dad for making this fantastic video, using a drone, to share with Giraffes and Zebras classes! The children absolutely loved it!

Map adventure Two Mile Ash

Don’t forget your teddy!

 

Children in Reception enjoyed a special teddy bears picnic on the field.  The teddies all had a wonderful time and we are pleased to tell you that the children in Leopards and Elephants classes did too!

Reading Stars Challenge
 
We are delighted to announce the winners of our Reading Stars Challenge:
 
1st prize – Nadia, who won a £50 voucher for Waterstones and some books
2nd prize – Aabigael, who won a bag of books and some puppets
3rd prize – Emelia-Rose, won a bag of books and a puppet
 
Well done to all of our Super Readers and everyone who took part in the challenge! We are extremely proud of all of you!
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