Blog #19 – w/c 01/02/21
Well, we’ve managed to get through another week and the half term break is within our sights at last. We are still no closer to having any clear detail around the re-opening of school, but rest assured we will let you know as soon as we have any information to share. In the meantime, it’s business as usual for the small number of students, including the children of key workers, for whom the school remains open, while the rest of you continue to access learning remotely.
There has been a significant increase in the number of students who are engaging with lessons via Google Classroom each week; this is very encouraging and our thanks goes to you, your parents and carers for your ongoing effort. As you can see, our therapy dog ‘Paddy’ has been logging in to Google Classroom every day to make sure he keeps up with his online learning.
Just to remind you, online lessons will be offered in a number of different ways and to repeat what we said last week, it’s never too late to re-engage. Some of your lessons will be live, where you will be able to see your teacher and interact with both your teacher and yours peers in real time. Some lessons will be pre-recorded, and others will allow you to work independently; these lessons will have a number of resources for you to work through. Interestingly, the latest research states that there isn’t an ‘ideal’ method of delivering content remotely and it suggests that a combination of all of the approaches described above seems to offer the best option.
A further reminder goes to you all to follow your usual school timetable on Google Classroom where you will find that work for each lesson has been posted by your teacher. As always, we are more than happy to help you resolve issues with Google Classroom or any other aspect of accessing remote learning effectively.
This week I thought that it was worth posting two images of our new building just to illustrate how much can be achieved in a very short space of time. The first image was from 18th December, the day the school closed for the Christmas break, and the second, much sunnier image, is from 5th February. As you can see, the building is now fully enclosed, the brickwork has been tidied up and levelled off and the door frames are in. I can’t wait to get inside.
Safer Internet Day
Mrs Tait would like to remind everyone that #SaferInternetDay is on 9th February 2021. If you want to know more about the day and how you can get involved, follow the link below where you will find bespoke advice for parents and carers and a range of resources from UK Safer Internet Centre:
Look what’s new in Technology
Miss McIvor in Technology has created a virtual art gallery to showcase Year 7’s Graphics work. As it’s not possible to visit real galleries at the moment, we can all see their work on the wall of this one.
Students were given the option to pick their own themes including really topical issues like the NHS, equality for women and the environment. Their focus was to look at the visual language companies use to ensure that they are recognisable to customers, such as Coca Cola’s famous red and white, and to create their own theme with a visual language. Please follow the link below to view some fantastic work.
Additionally, as you will all no doubt have heard, sadly, Captain Sir Tom Moore died this week and our thoughts and best wishes, along with the rest of the country, are with his family.
To mark his passing, and to help celebrate a long and wonderful life, Miss McIvor added an optional activity to Google Classroom and asked if students would like to create something in memory of Captain Tom, either digitally or using a hand drawing. Here are just a few of the fantastic responses, which are lovely to see.
Year 11 Progress Evening (day)
Yes, the virtual revolution continues!
In an effort to keep you completely informed, on Thursday we are hosting the first of our remote Progress Evenings (days) for the current Year 11. Parents and carers have received instructions about how to access the event but please let us know if you have had any problems making appointments with your child’s teachers.
Year 11 is a challenging year at any time as the exams approach. However, with the absence of examined GCSEs for the second year running, this year has been particularly difficult for students, parents and carers as decisions, both about the method of assessment, and how final grades will be agreed, remain unclear. Once these issues have been resolved, and schools know what will be expected of students, rest assured that we will do everything in our power to help your children secure the best possible outcomes that they are capable of.
In the meantime, it is important that all of our students maintain their focus, continue to engage fully with their learning and complete all of the work set by their teachers.
With half term only a week away, let’s keep our fingers crossed that we will have some good news to share with you very soon about a date for the reopening of the school. We completely understand the additional challenges that this term has posed, but together, we can and will succeed. We will come out of this stronger because we have all developed new approaches and learned new skills, but most of all, because we are a community that supports each other.
Have a great week and ‘Stay Safe’