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☰ Reflecting on a Busy Year

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Headteacher Blog

Reflecting on a Busy Year

Posted on: 13 Jul 2021 by Weston Green School

In the whirlwind of busy-ness that is the end of term, all of a sudden we find we are here, in our final week.

We have competed in Sports Days, celebrated at Prize Giving and this week, ended the year with the most fabulous performances of “Carmen Sandiego” and the wonderful “Flutterpillar”, a real highlight of our year at Weston Green. But of course all of this has happened within the backdrop of continued restrictions and the on-going difficulties this has caused. We have become adept at altering our plans but we have always tried to do as much as we can within the parameters, so that our school life can be as normal as possible for all of our children.

Having recorded the Prize Giving celebrations last week, this is always a natural point at which we reflect on our achievements across the year and what a year it has been. I am very proud of all we have achieved during this challenging year and it is also exciting to see the green shoots of our plans for the next exciting year ahead, through which we will see normality resume!

At the beginning of the year, I outlined to parents and the staff our priorities for this year. It is important that as a school we never sit still, even more so within this current climate,  it is important to keep evolving, moving forward and addressing the changes we need to make. We have learnt so much over the last year and it has been important to continually remain positive and look to the future to ensure that what we offer remains relevant, engaging and forward thinking.

Opening our Nursery, and introducing year round care for our youngest children, on the first day of lockdown January 2021, may have seemed a tricky task, but in reality, the provision has grown from strength to strength. Drawing on the creative and engaging practice of our Kindergarten and integrating this so that our very young children thrive within a school led, flexible nursery setting, working within the same values and ethos, has been a joy to see. It is simply a lovely place for our littlest ones to be and huge thanks must go to our wonderful staff led by Mrs Merry for making this happen.

Our further focus on developing our approaches to teaching reading, and becoming masters in maths, has ensured our teachers have continued to hone their practice, learn from each other and develop engaging and efficient strategies for children to learn. You may have heard your child speak of the language of VIPERS across KS1 & 2 and looking for parts of their stories that draw upon their Hand, Head and Heart in Reception, both effective strategies for teaching our children about the different forms of comprehension.

Together with an emphasis on promoting dialogue around learning through a range of different strategies for marking and feedback, involving the children in identifying their progress and knowing their next steps, it has been wonderful to see how engaged children have been in their own learning, both online and in school. Our monitoring of the quality of teaching and learning has shown a palpable difference in the way children are talking about their learning. Through the ‘steps to success’ in lessons, children are able to discuss how they can become successful in any one lesson, where they have achieved well and what needs to be their development focus. To involve children in this learning dialogue is crucial in enabling them to become analytical yet confident in the learning process. There are always areas we can improve upon and this helps children to see learning as a process rather than an outcome. 

We have been developing our priorities for the next academic year and look forward to sharing these with you at our “Vision, Values and School Priorities” Event on Thursday 23rd Sept 2021.

Before then, we thank you all for your support over the year and wish all our families a restful summer break. We look forward to seeing you refreshed in September!

Mrs Sarah Evans

Headteacher.

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