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From our Head of Primary: Working Together

31 October 2014

We are looking forward to welcoming parents to our Term 1 Parent Teacher Conferences next week.

These are a really valuable opportunity for teachers and parents to discuss how children have settled into the routines of school and are developing socially. You will also talk about your child’s attitudes towards, and aptitudes for, learning and importantly, discuss their next steps and targets.

Teachers have worked closely with the children over the past months and now have a good understanding of where children are in their learning and where they need to go. Shared clarity about next steps means that the path to future learning is clear to the teacher, children and can also be shared with parents.

The teacher has a carefully mapped out 'big picture' of the learning, and is always communicating it to the students so that they are at all times aware of where they need to go next. We then teach and support the children to monitor their own progress against defined targets or progressions, as the more the students are involved in the process of identifying their own next steps, the greater their understanding will be of how to extend and deepen their learning. This continual process of assessment (teacher and student) enables children to become self-regulating and develops their abilities to take ownership of their learning. It develops a positive mindset where children learn the importance of hard work, perseverance and risk taking.

You will have a chance to take a look at your child’s work and we are happy for you to take home their books if you wish to take a little more time to see the progress your child is making. We do ask however that you return them the next day as they are needed at school!

Next week we also celebrate our annual Book Week where we have lots of stimulating and exciting experiences planned for the children. We encourage you to talk each day to your child about what they have been doing and also take the time to read and talk about books in the evenings. Thanks to the parents who have already signed up to be mystery readers in the classes or to read a story in Story Land. If you wish to be involved, please contact your child’s class teacher to arrange times. Alternatively, bring a book along to Story Land (The Gallery) during any break or lunchtime any day next week and you can read to the children during their break!

Letters will be issued on Monday telling you more about the Book Fair where you and your child will have the chance to buy quality English books. Also, once you have packed away the Halloween costumes, you will need to get ready for our Book Week Character Day on Friday where children and teachers come to school dressed as a character from a book. A busy and exciting week ahead!

As the weather is changing, I would also like to remind parents to ensure children come to school with their BISS Puxi sweaters/cardigans and school fleece jackets – no non uniform items please!  Also, when it is wet or really cold, children should wear a suitable outdoor jacket as we will always try to get them outside at break where possible so they can have fresh air and a chance to run around. Please also remember to clearly label school uniform items so that we are able to reunite lost property with its owners.

Thanks as always for your continued support.

- Niki Meehan, Head of Primary