Care and Respect for All

15/11/2019

Thought of the Week:

“A single rose can be my garden… a single friend, my world. ”

Leo Buscaglia

Message From Mr Sutherland

I wanted firstly to express my thanks to all children, parents and staff who have engaged with Anti-Bullying Week and in particular, with our campaign to “Say No to Bullying”.  As a parent of 4 children who have come through the primary school system as well as in my roles firstly as a teacher and more latterly a Headteacher, I know what a complicated and emotive issue this can sometimes be.  The children in our school have all approached our theme in such a mature way, from our whole-school assembly on Monday morning, to the discussions and activities that have taken place through school.  In many ways, it is simple – be kind to everyone in school and outside school in the community; think before you say something that might be hurtful; be aware of how you interact with others and always use kind hands, kind feet and kind words.  However, I understand that this doesn’t always work – it’s not always enough.  Then we as teachers, senior leaders and parents have to take ownership of the problem and deal with it decisively.  I am grateful to those parents who have engaged positively with the school in this respect.  No-one wants to see a child’s life blighted by bullying and I am determined to do whatever I can to stop it when it occurs.  We do not tolerate bullying at Dunston Hill Community Primary School.  However, as much as this week has been about Anti-Bullying, it has also been about positivity around friendship, honesty and trust – the embodiment of our school values of “Care and Respect for All”.  I do believe that from an ethos of friendship, empathy for others and kindness comes an atmosphere of positive and inclusive relationships and we will endeavour to ensure everyone in our school feels this every day.  In a way, it isn’t so much about having an “anti-bullying week” but ensuring that we care for each other every single day and, importantly and as highlighted by our posters and Facebook posts this week, children know how to recognise bullying and know what to do when it happens, feeling supported by home and school when they do.  If you can, please try to find an opportunity to talk to your child this weekend about what they feel about what we have discussed this week.  Can they explain it to you?  Do they understand it better because of the work that has been done?  Is it clearer and do they feel listened to and supported?  We will follow this work up with a whole-school Friendship Display in our hall, a school song about kindness and a real awareness of the issues as part of our school culture under the theme “Be More Kind”.  Thank you for your support. #BeMoreKind

I am so excited to inform you that our new Sensory Room was completed on Wednesday of this week.  It is a wonderful safe space that we have created in our school – a discrete area containing resources to help children who can struggle with aspects of mental health, anxiety and stress.  It will also be used to support children in our school who have specific needs, to ensure that our school truly is inclusive as a community school.  We are currently taking a little time to understand how everything in it works as it is a state of the art facility with lots of technology!  However, we will soon have a grand opening ceremony and will be able to show the children all its features and begin using it to support the children’s well-being.  We will give you more information as soon as we can including some pictures and a little more detail.  I am immensely proud of this new facility and I believe it is one of very few in Gateshead.  I am also grateful for the support of governors in the implementation of this vision which is another aspect of our drive and determination to ensure the nurture and inclusion we provide for our families is second to none.

Have a great week!

 

 

Whole School Information

 

Say NO to Bullying!

As you will have seen from our Facebook page this week, we have taken part in Anti-bullying week. As part of this, all the children in school have taken part in a variety of activities to promote ways to recognise and deal with bullying. In Year 6, the children discussed friendships and how although we are all different, we are all equal. Year 5 created their own pledges about how they were going to challenge bullying while Year 4 explored the different types of bullying and created their own bracelets to raise awareness.  In Key Stage 1 and Early Years, the children talked about what makes a good friend and Year 1 made secret kindness postcards to make each other smile.

The school was awash with odd socks on Tuesday to spread the message everyone is individual and unique. Wednesday was Kindness day! Every day should be kindness day. We want to spread the message to ‘be more kind’. Staff and children alike were encouraged to do an act of kindness for one another. The Early Year’s team were overjoyed to come out of school on a dark frosty night to see Miss Cavanagh had defrosted all their cars – a small act of kindness goes a long way. The week has been extremity successful, and we believe our children have a greater understanding of what bullying is and is not, how to deal with it, and that at Dunston Hill we “Say NO to Bullying!

 

Children In Need

The children have been busy all day decorating and baking cakes and biscuits. Spots and Pudsey ears were spotted across the school with everyone coming together to support this cause. Thank you to everyone for coming along and supporting our bake sale.

 

End of Year Reports for Parents

This year we have decided to review our end of year progress reports for parents. Feedback we have received from parents is that they find some parts of the report more meaningful than others. Many have commented on how much they liked the photo and inclusion of a comment from the child on last year’s reports.  We are therefore creating a new report format that is user-friendly for both children and parents to read and treasure and teachers to write. We have had a working party of staff, parents and governors come together and share their thoughts and ideas and we would now like to invite parents and carers to come along and have their input into what elements of the reports they would like to see included or changed. If you would like to be involved in sharing your views please come along at 2.45pm on Tuesday 3 December to the Dunston Den.  In this way we will ensure that end of year reports are useful as a reference and a celebration for children and parents.

 

School Meals

The menu for week commencing Monday 18 November is Week 2.  A reminder that as part of our Healthy Schools programme, we ask that children do not bring crisps, chocolate or fizzy drinks in their packed lunches.  Due to allergies, please ensure that no kiwi fruit or peanuts are brought into school, including in the form of snickers or peanut butter sandwiches.  This is especially important to remember for children bringing in packed lunches or snacks.  Thank you

There has been a change to the Cook’s Choice on Mondays lunch menu.  Pizza replaces the Cook’s Choice.  Week 2 – Ham Pizza

 

Tiny Tribes – Toddler Group

Mrs Cox, our Family Support Worker is running an outdoor toddler group for families of children in our school. It runs every Friday from 9 am until 10 am. So, if you have a toddler who enjoys the outdoors, get them dressed in warm, waterproof clothing and bring them along. Each session is £1 per family and will involve activities such as singing around the campfire, mud pie making, den building and lots of other muddy fun activities. This is a chance for parents to play with their toddler and meet new people. There is no need to book; just come along each Friday. Parents and carers will need waterproofs and warm clothes too. Prepare to have some muddy fun – you will get dirty!

Photo of the Week

Class News

 

This week’s Class News is from Lower Key Stage 2…

Earlier this week, Year 4 were shocked to walk into a classroom where the chairs had been blown around, the tables turned over and mess everywhere!  We spotted some warning signs on the classroom door and discussed what we thought had happened.  After piecing together the clues, we came to the conclusion that there had been a tornado inside our classrooms and we then revealed that our new Geography unit this half term is ‘Extreme Earth’.  We began by posing geographical questions about what we would like to find out and we discussed what information we already knew.  We then moved on to identifying the layers of the Earth and to help with this, we created a model of the Earth using playdough and then cut our globes in half to explore the structure.

 

Key Stage 1 Author Visit

The children in KS1 have a very exciting opportunity to meet the multi-award-winning author, Tracey Corderoy on Tuesday 19 November.  Tracey has published 70 books from picture books to young and older fiction. During the afternoon, she will engage us with a very interactive session and inspire our children to want to read and write their own stories. Afterwards, children will be able to purchase any of the following books ‘Shifty McGifty’ and ‘Mouse’s night before Christmas’ which she will sign personally. If you would like to find out more about Tracey Corderoy and her books, visit her website on www.traceycorderoy.com

The books will be priced at £6.99 should you wish to send money in with your child on Tuesday 19th. Cheques cannot be accepted, and children will need to have the correct money.

 

Year 6 – Acropolis Street Food

We have arranged for the Acropolis team to come into school on Thursday 21 November to cook a range of authentic Greek food for our Year 6 children.  Please click on the link in the letter emailed to parents to confirm whether your child can take part or not and to inform us of any allergens.

 

Sporting News

 

Year 5 & 6 Netball

On Wednesday afternoon eleven Year 5 children went to Gateshead Leisure Centre to take part in a Year 5/6 Hi-5 netball tournament. It was played in a “round-robin” format wherein each game the children had to play in different positions. The children had great fun and showed great sportsmanship despite not progressing to the next round.

Cluster Athletics Tournament

On Tuesday, Miss Parkin and a team of 16 Year 6 pupils attended the Kingsmeadow Cluster Sportshall Athletics tournaments. During this event, the team competed in events including speed bounce, relays, javelin and sprinting races. The team excelled in all events to secure a place in the second round of the tournament. We will keep you posted with the outcome of the next round soon!

Year 5 – The Big Swim

Class 5B took part in a fantastic event at Dunston Pool on Thursday morning where they were involved in ‘The Big Swim’. This was an event across schools which involved children working together in small teams to overcome challenges and demonstrate how effectively they could communicate and collaborate to achieve a goal. The children were separated into mixed ability teams and had to follow strict rules to complete their tasks. They worked fantastically as teams and as a wider class, supporting the weaker swimmers with huge encouragement and made some brilliant tactical decisions to achieve their goals. The children were so supportive of one another that they received glowing praise from their swimming teacher about their fantastic attitude towards each other throughout.

Our Headteacher Awards were presented today to the following children who have all impressed their respective class teacher:

RCH  Tommy Todd

RCY  Holly Clark

1B   Molly Clark

1T   Tommy Fiddler-Turner

2B   Harry Sutton

2J   Ruby Doran

3C  Cally Anne Noble

3M  Lucy Sword

4C  Mila Dover

4W  Kasper Snowdon

5B  Leah Wray

5O  Millie Wylie

6P  Olivia Fox

6R  Neave Hepple

 

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School Attendance

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RCH

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5B