Monthly Archives: July 2016

What a last week!

So. here we are at the end of another wonderful year at Westwood with Iford School. It’s hard to believe that it has gone so quickly and this newsletter is always bittersweet for me as it is a real mixture of emotion. This week we have had the most incredible FoWs Fun Day and British day – a true celebration of the Queen’s 90th and all things British and a really lovely end to our term and academic year. 

On the one hand it is a great opportunity to reflect on all that we have achieved, the amazing learning that has taken place, our successful Ofsted inspection and, particularly, a celebration of our fabulous Year 6 children who have worked so hard. They will, of course now continue their journey in to the next phase of their education so to Mia, Flo, Izzy, Ruby, Tilly, Felix, Isaac, Theo, Edward, Wilf, Tom, Honor, Bella and Lily we say a HUGE well done and thank you for everything that you have given to our school in the time that you have been here. We will miss you all and I hope that you will come back and visit us sometime soon.

Of course we also have to say a very fond and emotional farewell to two much loved and long standing members of our staff team. Mrs Cook has been with us for 18 years this year and during that time has taught and worked with, literally, hundreds of young children. With her care, understanding, patience and dedication she has shaped and inspired so many children to go on to great things. Always teaching with such dedication and commitment, Mrs Cook has nurtured children through the door on their first days at school and has ensured that every need has been met, allowing them to blossom.

Mrs Purkiss has been with us for an equally substantial 16 years as a teaching assistant but has been associated with our school for longer than that. Helping with swimming, listening to readers and volunteering, she has given so much time to our school which has always been so very much appreciated. Of course, Mrs Purkiss has worked closely with many children in class, in groups and on a 1:1 basis, taking time to support, understand and listen, always bringing the very best out in children with her warmth and humour.

We often speak of our school community as a family, particularly our staff team and today we will be sadly saying goodbye to two of our key members. Thank you Mrs Cook and Mrs Purkiss for everything you have contributed over the many years to our school. You both leave a tremendous legacy that will be appreciated by so many for years to come. I am sure that you will join me in wishing them both a restful and thoroughly enjoyable retirement with their families.

I would very much like to thank our amazing Friends of Westwood school who, led by Ann as Chair and Elaine as Secretary have raised an incredible £7500 this year for us. This is a truly staggering achievement and a testament to everyone’s commitment and generosity in the time that they give. Ann and Elaine are stepping down this year and they have worked incredibly hard so I am sure you will join me in thanking them for their organisation and dynamism.

Now all that remains is for me to say a HUGE thank you to everyone – the staff, children, governors and you, the parents  for making this year so much fun, so enjoyable and so successful. I am already looking ahead to next year and  wish you all a restful, relaxing and enjoyable family summer together.

To end our year together, here are some photos of the Fun Day, our British Day and a special edition of our podcast, followed by interviews with staff members both retiring and joining us in September.

Mystery Skype – where in the world?

Today we took another step into Mystery Skype, a brilliant way to practice geography and map skills by live skyping someone from somewhere in the world, but not knowing where they are. Intrigued? We were too, but the children in Clover and Lotus class, who I was working with today, turned super sleuths. More information on #MysterySkype can be found on our website

Armed with atlases, Chromebooks and Laptops to access Google maps and a good level of questioning skill were able to narrow down our new acquaintance and Microsoft Innovative Expert, Ms Chaba to Gurgaon in India. What a fun time we had, along with some fabulous international learning and a good sharing of knowledge and facts as Ms Chaba kindly allowed us to ask her some questions in order to learn more about her home country. Our huge thanks to Ms Chaba for hosting and for a fun and enjoyable afternoon. Here we are in action today:

Another incredible Summer Fair!

I felt compelled this evening to blog about our Summer Fair, which took place yesterday afternoon in glorious sunshine (the fingers crossed clearly worked!) in and around the school grounds. Our committed and incredibly well organised Friends of Westwood School arrived early to ensure that the field looked spectacular, colourful and full of fun things to do, all of which surrounded the arena which, this year had grown both in live events on show and in size. From the perennially popular crockery smash to the hugely successful blind auction, with inflatables, stocks, flower stalls, ice creams and everything in between, there really was something for everyone and a three and half hours of pure fun and enjoyment that it was a joy  and a pleasure to be a part of.

We had more people through the gates yesterday than ever before and once again, the incredible community spirit and support that Westwood has was in abundance, with the field full of laughter and people having a good time in a relaxed atmosphere – what a village event is all about.  I’d like to give a HUGE thank you to Ann, Elaine and all of our Friends of Westwood School who give so much of their time, effort and commitment to our school. Months and months of planning and hard work resulted in a perfect afternoon yesterday. Thank you everyone, I was so proud to be a part of it and for school to be the centre of a fantastic village community event.

In case you couldn’t make it yesterday, I tried to capture as much as I could so here are some photos of the summer fair and a video of my brilliant country dancers. I am so proud of them all as they gave absolutely everything to learn some really quite difficult routines. Well done everyone, you were amazing and danced so well!