As Halloween occurred during the half term holiday we decided to celebrate on Friday 22nd October (the day we broke up).
The children came into school wearing Halloween costumes or non-uniform if they preferred.
Our catering team from Taylor Shaw outdid themselves in decorating the hall for lunchtime, dressing up and making a spooky Halloween lunch. Even children who normally have a packed lunch participated and enjoyed their ‘Frightening Fish Fingers’!
Thank you so much to everyone who joined in and many thanks to Lynn and Jamie-Leigh from Taylor Shaw for all their hard work in creating a fantastic atmosphere and experience for our children.
Twisted Tales for Terrible Children Drama Workshop
On Thursday 21st October 2021, we welcomed Gav Cross into school to deliver a drama workshop for our children. The workshop was organised as part of the Highlights Tour and was very kindly funded by St. Thomas’ Church Hall. Later that day, Gav also gave a performance in the Church Hall.
The workshop was split into three groups with our younger children from Amethyst and Sapphire working together, Ruby had their own session and then in the afternoon Emerald and Diamond joined together for a fantastic session.
Gav was extremely enthusiastic, dynamic and engaging. His storytelling was exceptional and he held the children spell-bound. The workshops involved the children using drama to retell familiar and unfamiliar stories. They really enjoyed using physical movement to convey different feelings and emotions.
The workshops not only gave our children the opportunity to experience story telling through drama, it also inspired them and embedded a love of stories. Our teaching teams used this experience as a stimulus for writing and for further drama to across a range of curriculum areas.
Film Stars in the Making
On Tuesday 19th October 2021, 8 children whose names had been pulled out of a hat for having 100% attendance visited Killhope Lead Mine with Mrs Cross. Annie, Aimee, David, Cooper, Ava, Jayden, Willow and Alexander were the lucky children drawn out of the hat.
Killhope were making a promotional film to advertise and encourage visitors for next Spring and Summer and needed some children to appear in the background as extras and also to take part in an interview about Killhope.
Our visit began with a trip down the mine, which was a bit scary but all of the children were incredibly brave and had a go showing excellent resilience even though they were a bit anxious.
David, Aimee and Cooper then took part in an interview all about the Killhope experience. They were very professional and were a real credit to the school.
We then continued the tour and visited various areas within Killhope. The children were horrified to discover that children as young as 9 were sent to work down the mines! The visit ended with us all working on the Washing Floor looking for galena and fluorspar. The children experienced all of the jobs children would have done on the Washing Floor and everyone was lucky enough to find some treasure to take home.
As a thank you for taking part in the filming each child was given a goody bag. The children had a great time and Ava even said : “ This is the best day ever!”
We will let parents know the dates the film is being released.
Jet and Ben visit our school
On Thursday 16th September 2021, Durham Police brought Jet and Ben, their safety dogs, into our school to meet the children. Their handler (Claire) was joined by our local PCSO Jamie and they spoke to the children about the role of the police, road safety, playing outside safely and online safety.
Everyone was extremely excited to meet the two Labradors! The children sat so quietly and calmly waiting for the arrival of the dogs. Jet (the black lab) was really excited to come into the hall and meet everyone! Claire explained what dogs are used for by the police and then every child had the opportunity to stroke the dogs as they left the hall.
After assembly, Jet and Ben escorted Claire and Jamie down to the Opal and Amethyst Learning Zones where they spent time with our very youngest children answering lots of questions about what they had learnt in assembly.
We look forward to welcoming Jet and Ben back to school later in the year.
Feedback from our children:
“They both feel so soft and cuddly.”
“It was really fun having Jet and Ben in the school hall.”
“ I was a bit nervous but I used my superpower of courage and gave the yellow one a little stroke.”
Feedback from our team:
“It was fantastic to see the children participating with visitors allowed back in school.”
Feedback from our Academy Councillor:
“The PSCO’s were very friendly and informative about safety both inside and outside of school. They were extremely engaging with the children. It would be lovely to see them back in school later in the year so that we can reinforce confidence.”
For more information check out the Jet and Ben website for lots of great activities!