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News 2nd December 2021

Dear Parents/Carers


It is beginning to feel a lot like Christmas at St Mary’s, with Nativity rehearsals, Carol singing, the creation of market stall gifts and even the arrival of a donkey on Tuesday morning!

On Tuesday, Wintershall actors came to share the Christmas Story with the school. They set up scenery and stables outside on the grass area, with a shepherd and his sheep and Sam the donkey who made a great impression on the children and the staff. It was a wonderful way to bring the message of Christmas home to the children and make them stop and reflect about the significance of many aspects of the story. Thank you to Mrs Porter for organising this fantastic event.

Year 6 and Year 4E presented their class assemblies to pupils and parents, last Thursday for Year 6, all about their learning of World War 1 and today for Year 4E about World War 2. In both assemblies, children had many lines to learn, they acted and sang wonderfully and in both cases, the audiences were very moved. Well done to all the pupils and to Miss Hampshire and Mrs Evans for the time and hard work that went into these performances.
Next week, we are looking forward to the Key Stage One Nativity and the children are working hard on their lines and excited about performing in front of their parents.

We continue to follow DFE guidance carefully and request that all parents wear masks at all times when attending assemblies or nativity performances in school. Therefore, please do not bring coffee/drinks with you into school, as masks must remain on throughout performances. Thank you for your support with this.

On Saturday, our Christmas Fair is taking place outside on the grounds from 12pm to 2.30pm. It promises to be a wonderful event, with various stalls, Santa’s Grotto, tombola, mulled wine and Carol singing. Access is through the Recreation Ground and School Lane gates from 12pm, the gates will remain open, so please be vigilant with all children at all times. St Mary’s children will sing at 1pm on the ampitheatre, it would be wonderful to see as many of them as possible; however, we would also appreciate audience participation. For the more reserved amongst you, a couple of cups of mulled wine should do the trick!

The PTA and I look forward to seeing many of you on Saturday.

Have a wonderful weekend.
Best wishes
Mrs Buckley
Headteacher

Diary Dates
Date                      Activity        
3.12.21                  Y4K Henley Fort Residential
4.12.21                  Christmas Fair
8.12.21                  Nativity Dress rehearsal
9.12.21                  Advent Calendar switch on
9.12.21 @ 2.00     Nativity – tickets only
10.12.21 @ 9.30    Nativity – tickets only
10.12.21 @ 2.15    REACH Assembly – invite only
14.12.21                Amber & Emerald Christmas lunch/Christmas Jumper Day £1.00 donation
15.12.21                Sapphire & Ruby Christmas lunch/Christmas Jumper Day £1.00 donation
15.12.2                  Santa Dash

Year 1

It has been a delight to watch the children grow in confidence this half-term as the routines and expectations of Year 1 become more familiar.

We are learning to be more independent in choosing resources to help with our learning and in managing our own belongings. The children are enjoying the responsibility of taking on independent learning tasks and working hard to improve the content and presentation of these each week. They have now selected some of their favourite pieces to be displayed in their topic books.

The children have really engaged with our topic of Houses and Homes. We began our journey right here in Chiddingfold where we learned about the homes and the environment in which we live. We created models of our own homes to add to our Chiddingfold window.

We have used some much loved- Disney films to help us look at houses and homes of the different characters including animals and their environments. We visited the continent of Africa with ‘the Lion King’ and we looked at the different types of homes found there. We have recently joined up with a school in Malawi, and we compared the way children learn there with our learning at St Marys.

We used ‘The Jungle Book’ to look at rainforest homes and the continent of South America. We created jungle collages using different fabrics and textures.

Our science learning on Materials has worked perfectly when exploring the materials used to construct buildings in different places. The children can describe the properties of a range of materials using scientific language and they now know which materials are best for rooves, windows and walls and for keeping away animals at night! We have looked closely at wood as a material and we learned how to use our woodwork area safely. Have a look at the hedgehogs we made.

‘Finding Nemo’ helped us to learn about plastic and how it can affect ocean habitats. We made posters to explain what we could do to help.

This is only a snapshot of the learning that has taken place this term. As you can see, we have been very busy and we are now looking forward to our Christmas celebrations. We can’t wait to entertain you with our Nativity performance!
Merry Christmas.

COVID GUIDANCE

We continue to follow the DFE guidance very carefully and have reviewed and amended our risk assessment accordingly.

Pupils should continue to attend school; we recommend continuing taking regular lateral flow tests and in the case of COVID symptoms a PCR test. Isolation for close contacts is not required, unless it is discovered the close contact has the omicron variant, then close contacts must isolate for ten days.
Teachers are only obliged to provide home learning for those isolating due to Covid isolation. If your child is at home unwell with another illness, work will not be provided.

Please continue to wear facemasks when coming into the school building for any reason. Masks are not required on the school playground or for outside events, however, please respect those who wish to do so.

CHRISTMAS ARRANGEMENTS
Nativity
Tickets will be in book bags on Tuesday 7th December. As you are aware, space is at a premium in the school hall so you must bring your tickets with you to gain admittance to the Nativity performance (they will be checked on the door).

Please respect others wishes and do not share any images of the performance on social media forums.
There will be a collection at the end of the nativity performance for Save the Children.

CHRISTMAS DINNER – CHRISTMAS JUMPER
Instead of having a Christmas Jumper Day on Friday 10th December, we are asking children to come dressed in their Christmas outfits on the day of their Christmas dinner. We are raising money for Save The Children so please make a suggested donation of £1.00 to Scopay.
Tuesday 14th December – Amber & Emerald
Wednesday 15th December – Ruby & Sapphire.
If you haven’t already done so, please don’t forget to book your Christmas meal on Scopay.

PARKING
A polite reminder to not park in front of the pedestrian gate or block the main gate in school lane any time during the day.

CHILDREN IN NEED
We have raised £306.00 for Children in Need. Thank you to everyone who contributed.
Following Government guidelines, schools are no longer allowed to authorise requests for children to be taken out of school for a holiday during term time unless there are exceptional circumstances. If you take your child out of school, you may face a penalty notice.

WEEK COMMENCING 8TH NOVEMBER 2021
RECEPTION – 97.4%
Year 1 – 91.7%
Year 2 – 95.6%
Year 3 – 94.8%
Year 4K – 87.0%
Year 4E – 91.2%
Year 5 – 98.8%
Year 6 – 95.8%
 

ST. MARY’S
SCHOOL VISION

Reflecting the virtues of Jesus' Mother, Mary, our vision is for every member of our school community to be inspired to blossom and grow in order to fulfil their potential, academically, socially and spiritually in all aspects of learning. By exploring the underpinning core values of wisdom, hope, respect and community, our pupils understand how to live out this vision and become kind, respectful and resilient social advocates, playing their part in building a better world.