Y6 – Hawk Owls
Year 6 Buddies
Each child in Hawk Owls will have an Elf Owl buddy who will regularly visit them in their classroom, look after them at playtime and reads stories with them.
This half term we are studying the Scream Machine an exciting unit about Theme Parks and Fairgrounds. We will be writing some suspense pieces which we will share to terrify and delight you! We will also be looking at biographies, focusing on Walt Disney and how Disney World and Disney Land came into existence. We look forward to sharing amazing writing with you on this page.
We are very excited to have been given £5 million imaginary pounds in order to design and plan our own theme park! We will be working in teams to develop our problem solving and mathematical thinking skills in order to plan them and budget carefully. We will also be building one of the rides and using our science knowledge of electricity in order to light it up! We will invite Parents and Carers in at the end of term to see our fantastic designs. Please see our topic web below for more exciting information on this terms learning.
Please can PE kits be left in school all week, this term we will be having PE on a Friday.
Exciting news- We are going to Kilverough Manor in The Gower Peninsula for our residential trip on Monday 10th June-Friday 14th June 2019. Take a look at their website: https://www.oxfordshireoutdoorlearningservice.co.uk/centres/kilvrough-manor/
Further information will follow this term.
Great Milton C of E School
Monday 3rd December 2018
Dear Mrs Frost,
We all understand that as a head teacher you have difficult decisions to make – especially on snow days. By writing this letter, my aim is to assist you with that decision making process and explain why I think it is much easier for Staff, Pupils and Parents if schools make the decision to close during extreme adverse weather conditions.
Firstly, I understand that snow closures are not ideal but have you thought about the risk to adults and children? Travelling to work is a tricky business – made even more difficult when the first flutterings of snow covers pavements and roads. Do you want to see teachers stuck in their cars, unable to get to school? Or would it be more beneficial for them to be at home –planning their lessons carefully, instead of unproductive and stuck at the side of the road (or worse in a snow related accident?) Teachers can always email us some work to complete as most pupils now have access to the internet and a computer and or tablet.
Secondly, as pupils we work extremely hard all year – don’t we deserve some time away to be children? Remember last year’s snow reading challenge? That was the highlight of my year! It such a fantastic feeling to spend time with my family and get outside. In addition, it gives us some great experience to write about upon our return. As you are aware, Year 6’s current topic is extreme weather – what better way to learn than experience it first hand?!
In addition, the safety of the pupils is obviously of paramount importance to yourself. The school site is tricky to navigate at the best of times, add the complication of snow and it becomes extremely hazardous. As a school without a caretaker, we do not have the luxury of someone being able to live on site and make playgrounds and pathways accessible in the event of snow. Just think, accidents could and would happen with all of our pupils trying to access it at one time. The added complication of emergency vehicles trying to enter the site – up the long entrance drive - doesn’t bear thinking about.
Finally, I understand that Parents struggle with childcare costs and time off work during school closures. I think adults need to prioritise time with their children and try to take a break themselves from life’s work treadmill. Let’s face it, if they have to look after their own children, it is not the worse thing in the world – they might even enjoy it! And it is only temporary – we only have a small percentage of snow days a year in the United Kingdom. Also, the expense of fitting winter tyres, snow shoes and appropriate clothing probably far outweighs the cost of staying at home for one whole day.
I hope I’ve given you some interesting points to consider. Please do not hesitate to write back with your thoughts.
Pupil at Great Milton C of E School.
Snow school closures 'no harm to learning'
By Sean CoughlanBBC News education correspondent
Results not going downhill: Many US schools were closed by snow this winter
Closing schools on occasional days because of bad weather does not damage learning, says a Harvard academic.
The research wanted to find an answer to the winter argument about whether schools should struggle to stay open in heavy snow or shut their doors.
Seven years of school test data showed no evidence that snow closures adversely affected results.
The worst disruption was caused when schools tried to stay open but many staff and pupils were missing.
The study, carried out by Joshua Goodman, assistant professor of public policy at the Harvard Kennedy School in Massachusetts in the US, was an attempt to measure the impact of school days lost to bad weather.
Worse to stay open
Almost as soon as the first winter snowflake falls, there are debates about whether schools should be kept open.
The study suggests there are academic arguments for them being closed.
Prof Goodman was asked by the Massachusetts education department to find out whether there really was any loss to learning from snow closures.
Looking at test results in the US state between 2003-10, he found no evidence that pupil achievement had been affected when schools were occasionally shut.
A former high school teacher himself, Prof Goodman says schools can easily adapt to short-term closures, readjusting their plans for the rest of the term.
Such a clean break seemed to cause less disruption than trying to stay open, when many pupils might not be able to get into school.
This creates a knock-on effect of pupils trying to catch up, he says. And this does seem to have a negative impact on achievement.
Prof Goodman says that arguments over a few days of snow closures can often become very "emotional" - and they overlook that many pupils miss a greater number of school days through other types of absenteeism, such as sickness or truancy.
Such absenteeism by individuals does adversely affect their results, he says, more than an occasional planned closure by the whole school.
This good news for pupils wanting an authorised day off was summarised by Prof Goodman: "Closures have no impact. Absences do."