Category Archives: School News

News about our school

Father’s Friday 2017

What a wonderful day we had on Friday! After the enormous success and delight of Mother’s Monday earlier in the year we welcomed our dads, grandads, uncles and special male members of our family into school on Friday to share the children’s learning and to taker part in another fun day at Westwood School for our annual, and ever popular, Father’s Friday.

Beginning with one of the most packed celebration assemblies I think I’ve ever seen, it was a real pleasure to be able to share many successes with so many parents and friends of the school. Then, as always, our visitors were invited to go into class to sit with their children to find out what a day at school involves. It was super to see everyone taking a full part in the learning, supporting their children, playing football and running around the field at playtime and even joining us for lunch in the hall.  So many dads and members of our school community were so generous in giving up their time to join us, I cannot thank you all enough for making the day so special.

For those children who are broadcasters and had their dads in school, 2.30pm was an opportunity to take them into the studio to take part in our live broadcast. A brilliant time was had by all – so much fun and even an interview with our visitors live on air made for the sort of afternoon that makes working in a school such a delight. You can listen again to the show here. I highly recommend it!

Also, here are some images that captured a wonderful day. Thank you everyone for coming.

A great first week

Here we are already at the end of our first week back into the new and final term of the year. It seems hard to believe that the calendar says June already and we will soon be saying goodbye to some dear friends in Year 6.

However, this week has got the term off to a flying start. Firstly though, I must thank and congratulate the wonderful organisers of the Westwood Scarecrow Trail who all worked tirelessly to put together the most fantastic event during half term.  People came from far and wide to take part and with 595 maps sold, the trail had its biggest turnout ever. With a pop up cafe running for two days over the bank holiday too, the funds raised from the event amount to a completely staggering £2133, which will be shared between Westwood nursery and our school. Thank you all so much for coming tot take part and an enormous thank you from us all to everyone who helped to organise such a brilliant event.

In school, or rather out of school, Orchid class have enjoyed a fascinating trip to the Royal Mint this week. They were able to see how coins were struck and even had their photograph taken standing next to £1,000,000! It was lovely to hear about their experience and they were all buzzing! Clover class, too have been learning off site, with a visit to Downside Nursery, the entry point for their new topic on plants. They loved the experience and chose and brought back some plants which have now been potted and look beautiful! Throughout the school there has been some fabulous learning taking place and I have even had the pleasure to teach all of our children this week and see it first hand. With Father’s Friday and International day, as well as the Orchid £5 challenge to look forward to next week, our term will just keep getting better and better, with so much to look forward to.

If you are able, please tune into a very special Westwood Radio show on Monday. Our broadcasters have been personally invited to collaborate on a live radio show with Russell Prue from the West of England ICT Conference in Bristol. The show will focus on online safety and we are on air from 1.30pm. You can listen in all the usual places, including a link from our website, westwoodwithiford.org and using our player on radio.westwoodwithiford.org. Please text and email in for a shout out as it is going to be such an exciting day!

The diversity of Headship

One of the things I love most about my job is the variety it brings on a daily and weekly basis.

This week I have had the pleasure of working with most of our wonderful children and count teaching a wet and hugely fun capacity lesson in Thistle class, working with children on using a new piece of software to create images and text with dexterity and skill and even enjoying a live radio broadcast among some of the many activities that I have been involved in this week.

One of the many joys of working in a small school is that you get to know the children and their families so very well and that opportunities for working in the classroom arise regularly. Take in an after school coding club, leading assemblies, touring the school during a busy and wonderfully enthusiastic maths day and writing both a newsletter and a piece for the Westwood Update, it all goes in to making a brilliantly diverse job that I am lucky enough to do.

Of course, I must include all of the amazing people that work at our school, as without the completely dedicated and talented team that we have making each day so much fun for the children. They constantly work hard to provide inspiring learning opportunities and bring so much fun and good humour to the building that it really is a special and unique place to be.

Here are a few photos from this week’s maths day to show you what I mean.

Please don’t forget next week’s Race for Life – it would be lovely to see you there. You can also donate to our school page for Cancer Research on http://uk.virginmoneygiving.com/wwipschool

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Another week has passed us by already…

As I write this to you we are already almost two weeks into a very short term yet we always have so much to celebrate and look forward to.

I would like to begin with some thanks to our brilliant FoWs who, once again, organised a super disco for the children last week. DJ Stewart was on his usual top form, playing all the favourites and with dance club leading the way with their routines it was another thoroughly enjoyable evening. We are very lucky to have so many people who give up their time to staff these occasions, so my thanks to everyone who came along and helped last week. The FoWs raised another £166 for the school, which is amazing.

We are so grateful to our FoWs and to our parent community for their unwavering support and generosity and I would like to update you on how we have used some of the money that has been raised already this year. Through a large donation from our FoWs, we have now been able to fill our iPad trolley so that we have 16 devices, allowing more children to use them and a whole class to work in pairs. These devices have been hugely beneficial in supporting the children’s learning and are used on a daily basis. Thank you to everyone for allowing this to happen, we are all incredibly grateful.

Our gardening and pond and patch group have been working incredibly hard and we now have a fabulous pond in the gardening area. This has been fenced off for safety, but I would like to draw your attention to it so that we can all work together to ensure that everyone continues to remain safe around water. I must thank Ms Brown and Mrs Millen for organising this development and look forward to seeing it used on so many ways throughout the coming months. To support this, we also have obtained another grant from Tesco which will go towards adding a polytunnel to our gardening area, allowing outdoor learning all year round.

Westwood Radio continues to go from strength to strength and we are now up to our 25th live weekly show, which is such an achievement. The children are just brilliant and broadcast with incredible confidence, which makes me so proud. If you are unable to join us for the live shows on a Friday afternoon, you can always listen again from the website http://radio.westwoodwithiford.org/latest-show.html or you can catch up with everything that is going on in the studio via our blog, http://radio.westwoodblogs.org/ We are very excited as next week, 12th May, we will be joined for the whole show by Ben Prater from BBC Wiltshire’s Breakfast show, who asked if he could come along. We will be live on air from 1.30pm.

Finally, I would like to wish all of our wonderful Year 6 children all the very best for next week in their SATs. We are all so incredibly proud of you and all that you have achieved, both in and out of the classroom and I hope that it is just another lovely week at our school, as it should be and that you are able to enjoy your breakfast club and fun with your friends.

Have a super weekend everyone

Easter Fun in the Sun!

The end of term is always so full of excitement and fun but it can also get incredibly busy, so it’s only now that I have a few minutes to add the wonderful array of photos that were taken on our last day of term. With glorious weather for the occasion we were, once again, so well supported by our school community that the hall was packed for assembly and the children were on top form with their singing and speaking.

Then it was a swift move outside to enjoy an array of colour as the children paraded around our field wearing their beautifully crafted Easter hats and bonnets that must have taken hours to make! Finally, our perfect Easter afternoon was rounded off with the annual egg rolling competition. Everyone was a worthy winner and with wonderfully decorated eggs flying in all directions, it was tricky to find the furthest roll from each year group but we managed it!

Thank you to everyone who came and joined in the fun of our last afternoon and I wish you all a super Easter break. I look forward, also,  to another wonderful term together when we get back. Here are the photos from the afternoon, thank you Mrs Batten! Happy Easter everyone.

What a Week!

This week we have had such a busy week at our school. Beginning with the wonderful Mother’s Monday when we welcomed so many of our mums and special people in to school, it was the perfect way to start the week. Please see the previous post for more details.

On Tuesday we welcomed back Emma Hodgkins of the Helen Hodgkins Trust to Westwood school to be interviewed for our radio show about her work with providing clean water for families in Ghana through her charity. You can find out all about her brilliant work on http://www.helenhodgkinstrust.org/ So far this year we have been able to donate a lot of money through your generosity to our cake sales, growing £1 events and Ghana cafe. We are planning more events later in the year too, so watch this space!

Here is Emma’s wonderful interview with Izzy, explaining her work and busy life, if you missed it on Friday’s show:

On Wednesday our talented gymnasts took to the floor and apparatus at the Wiltshire School of Gymnastics, taking part in the West Wilts Primary School gymnastics competition. As always, the children performed fantastically, with routines to be proud of and they were a complete credit to our school. Thank you to all of you who took part and enjoyed your day and also a huge thank you to Mrs Hannam for organising the vent and giving the children a great experience.

Thursday saw Lotus class visit Bath Rugby for a Tag Rugby event and they had so much fun going up against teams from other schools, learning some super rugby skills. As if that wasn’t tiring enough, they then came back and ran a brilliant Easter egg hunt for the school, raising over £140. Well done everyone!

Friday was SUCH a busy and exciting day as we welcomed Conservative MP for Chippenham and local area Michelle Donelan to our school. Michelle very kindly took time out of her busy schedule to attend our celebration assembly, presenting the attendance and Westwood Wonders of the Week trophy (complete with drum roll!) and to look around the school, talking to staff and answering some fantastic questions. Michelle then joined us in the Westwood Radio studio to be interviewed by Oscar, Lily and Finn who had all prepared their own superb questions to gain an insight into the life and work of an MP. Michelle was brilliant and gave us a fantastic interview. Here is the full interview:

As if that wasn’t enough of a busy day, we then had a super assembly with Jenny Knight from the Wiltshire Music Service who introduced us all to the wonders of the Ocarina. This is a fantastic little intrusment that we are all going to learn as part of a school project to develop our musical abilities. With Jenny’s energy and skills, we were all singing and playing within no time. Here is a brief snippet of what we were learning. My apologies for my dulcet tones in the background!

So to end this post after a truly wonderful week, here are some photos of our Friday – a great day to end an inspiring and thoroughly enjoyable week and another to be proud of at our school.

World Book Day 2017

From the moment I opened the door at 8.55am this morning, I knew that we were going to have a wonderful day. I was not wrong. Standing in front of the assembled school it was so lovely to see how everyone – children, staff and adults – had made such a superb effort to all come as their favourite book character to celebrate World Book Day. With everyone from Where’s Wally to Goldilocks and The Boy in the Dress to Harry Potter, all types of books and stories were represented and it demonstrated what a love of reading our school has.

In class the fun continued throughout the day, with the staff all having planned some fantastic learning activities for the children, all centered around reading and books. Furthermore, a whole school reading session, with older children pairing with younger children made the day even more special and a special announcement from Mrs Hannam of an extreme reading award has now got everyone thinking how best to create that perfect photo of themselves reading!

In all it was another day to be proud of what we have at our school and a perfect way to mark the occasion. Here are some photos of the fun we had: