Issue 5 - 4th October 2023
As well as different sporting activities, we have lots of events booked in this term and opportunities for parents to come into school. This month, Year 3 parents are invited to have lunch with their child, Year 5 children have been invited to Barclay to watch a performance of ‘Oliver’ and we finish the month with our FOAH Halloween (silent) disco. In November, we have planned trips to the cinema for all year groups (free of charge!) and parents of children in Years 4 and 5 will be invited to a fun DT afternoon. In the run up to Christmas, Year 3 will perform their nativity to parents and children in Year 6 will attend the church (with the school choir) to sing Christmas carols with families invited too. We will also be hosting a Rocksteady Concert for ‘band members’!
In response to parent feedback, we have planned parent events for all year groups across different weeks to make it more accessible for all. We also know that Letchmore have lots of events planned and have tried to liaise with them as best as possible to avoid any conflict of dates. We would also really welcome help from parent volunteers on school trips wherever possible as staffing can sometimes be a barrier to engaging in more external events. Please email your child’s year group if this is something you may be able to do (on an adhoc basis). If you are a keen gardener, we are also looking for volunteers to help maintain our allotment. Please email the year 4 group if you would be interesting in helping in the allotment.
In addition to our monthly values, we will be having a whole school focus on the concept of empathy this year. The definition of empathy shared with children is: the ability to understand and share the feelings of another. Empathy is the ability to emotionally understand what other people feel, see things from their point of view, and imagine yourself in their place. Essentially, it is putting yourself in someone else's position and feeling what they are feeling. Empathy enables people to get on with others, whether it be a loved one, peer, friend or complete stranger. Ultimately, it is essential for developing good relationships, both at school and at home and throughout our life. Last year, we focused on gratitude and saw a real positive shift in mind set. Please speak to children about empathy and what this means to them over the coming weeks.
Have a good week.
Parent Survey Feedback
Question 2 on our survey related to our website. We asked if parents look at the website and what they would like to see added. I am pleased to see that the vast majority of parents answered yes, they do look at the website and there were some suggestions on areas that you would like us to improve which I will address here. Some parents suggested more photos of the staff would be useful. The website already has photos of all staff members but I appreciate this may not be found easily so photos of all members of Almond Hill staff are now on our staff page.
It was requested that up to date plans for each subject were available. Our long term and medium term plans are on the website and these are regularly reviewed. However, curriculum is ever changing as we seek to improve and adapt e.g. we have been reviewing the PSHE content to ensure we are meeting the needs of the pupils so sometimes, documents may be changed after publication. They can be found here: Year group pages
Some parents would like to see more photos of events. Each class now has an iPod which they use to upload photos to Seesaw. These are also taken with staff on events to take photos where consent allows. These are then added to our website here: Photo Gallery
There were some comments regarding our website calendar. Last week, we spoke about adding clubs to the calendar which has been done. Our admin team have made a start on ‘splitting’ the calendar. This has been done before and unfortunately wasn’t as effective as some would have hoped so please let us know on our next survey if this does not work. The categories have been split into school events, term dates, clubs, lower school and upper school so you can select which you would like to view. We would suggest always having ‘school events’ ticked as well as your child’s tier to avoid missing events. Don’t forget, you can subscribe to our calendar to keep up to date with the events going on within the school. Follow the link below, select 'subscribe' and follow the instructions for your device. School Calendar
Autumn Parents’ Evenings
Don’t forget to book your appointment. The booking system will close at 9.00am on Friday 6th October. Should you wish to make any changes after this date, please contact the school office.
The system we use for booking these meetings is the same as we recently used for clubs. Please visit https://almondhill.parentseveningsystem.co.uk to book your appointment. Please log in with the following information: your child’s first name, surname and date of birth.
All parents are welcome to attend the first forum of the year with our parent volunteers and Miss Simmons. This will take place in school on Monday 16th October 5:30 - 6:30pm. Please email email@example.com (FAO Miss Simmons) if you would like to attend.
Year 5 trip to Barclay - Request for Volunteers
The students of Barclay Academy have invited students in Year 5 to a matinee performance of their production of Oliver Jr by Lionel Bart - a story based on the novel Oliver Twist by Charles Dickens. This takes place at the same time as swimming lessons so non-swimmers will be going. With members of staff attending swimming and escorting children to Barclay, we would really appreciate some support from parents. If you are free and able to attend the production at Barclay, please contact the year group email: firstname.lastname@example.org The performance is on Tuesday 17th October 1.30pm - 2.45pm and parents would be walking to and from the production with us.
In the recent visit to our school, a traffic warden reported being verbally abused/threatened by an individual visiting our school. I was disappointed to hear about this incident and would like to remind parents that traffic wardens are just doing their job which ultimately mean safer roads for our children. We have received numerous complaints regarding dangerous parking/driving around our school site and their role is to help prevent accidents from happening – something we can all agree we want.
For our full calendar, please click the 'button' link below.
Click here to open the diary dates for next week
04/10/2023 - 12:15pm – 1:00pm3C Parent Lunch
04/10/2023 - 3:15pm – 4:15pmYear 4 Stop Frame Animation
05/10/2023 - 3:00pm – 3:30pmUniform Sale
05/10/2023 - 3:15pm – 4:15pmYear 5 Bench Ball
06/10/2023 - 3:15pm – 4:15pmYear 6 Football Club
09/10/2023 - 3:15pm – 4:15pmYear 3 Multi Sports Club
10/10/2023 - 3:15pm – 4:15pmYear 4 Hockey Club
10/10/2023 - 3:30pm – 6:00pmParents' Evening (except for 3C)
11/10/2023 – 12/10/2023 - All DayYear 6 Lancaster Model Health Questionnaire
11/10/2023 - 12:15pm – 1:00pm3A Parent Lunch
11/10/2023 - 3:15pm – 4:15pmYear 4 Stop Frame Animation
12/10/2023 - 3:15pm – 4:15pmYear 5 Bench Ball
12/10/2023 - 4:00pm – 7:00pmParents' Evening (except for 3C)
13/10/2023 - 3:15pm – 4:15pmYear 6 Football Club
Year 3 – 95.2%
Year 4 –95.7%
Year 5 –92.6%
Year 6 –91.4%
All students – 93.78%
Class winners 4L – 98%
The government expectation for attendance is 96%
Please log onto http://app.schoolgrid.co.uk to order
Next week we will be on week 3.
Please don’t forget to pre-order. It can be done from home for the day, week, month or
Upcoming Friends of Almond Hill Events
Halloween Disco – FOAH will be hosting our Halloween disco on Wednesday 18th October.
Please note, there will be NO clubs after school on this day. This does not impact Premier our wrap around care provider.
The times for the disco are as follow:
Year 3 - 3.30-4.30pm Year 4 - 4.15-5.15pm Year 5 - 5.00-6.00pm Year 6 - 5.45-6.45pm
Tickets cost £5 and include a snack and a drink. Online payments for tickets will close on Wednesday 11th October. Tickets cannot be purchased after this date or children added to the list. This is because risk assessments regarding dietary and medical needs have to be written and shared in advance and this will be done the Thursday before.
Christmas Present Room - Friday 8th December
Christmas sweet jars – details to follow.
In Other News…
Year 5 and 6 took part in The Stevenage Sporting Futures Cross Country event at Fairlands Valley last Thursday afternoon. Over 15 local primary schools took part and there were approximately 360 children who raced. Each school submitted a Year 5 girls’ and boys’ team and a year 6 boys’ and girls’ team of up to six runners in each category. There were approximately 90 children in each race and the nerves and adrenalin were definitely palpable in the air! Many AH family members attended to show their support for the children and their presence definitely spurred everyone on. Almond Hill's results were amazing! Out of the 15 participating schools, Almond Hill took home two team trophies: Year 5 girls' team and Y5 boys' team both placing first. The Y6 girls' team also placed an impressive second place. There were also some incredible individual wins; Arthur in 5W came joint first place in his race, Hettie in 5P came third place in her race and Teddy in 6C came in third also. These children all received individual medals. Eddie in 5S narrowly missed out on an individual medal in fourth place. Well done to all who attended - everyone gave it their all. There were many examples of great sportsmanship from the AH children and they certainly seized the challenge and opportunity to climb high. A proud day for the Almond Hill community.
The Abilities in Me Fundraiser
A big thank you for your donations to The Abilities in Me Foundation. We raised a wonderful £183.19!
Rag Bag Recycling
We will be collecting from Rag Bag on Wednesday 18th October. The 'Rag Bag' recycling scheme increases awareness about textile recycling and by increasing recycling rates, we can help the environment by ensuring less material goes to landfill.
Please follow the link below for details about what can/cannot be collected.
Please bring your items (bagged) to school on the morning of Wednesday 18th October as do not have space to store items before then.
Information for Families
Herts Haven Cafe
Children and young people, parents and carers and the professionals who work with them are all invited to join us to celebrate the launch of Herts Haven Cafés between 2pm and 5pm on Tuesday 17 October 2023.
These cafés are a haven of support for children and young people in the county aged 10 to 18, offering free-of-charge, emotional wellbeing support without the requirement of a referral.
The official opening is at The Bowes Lyon Centre in Stevenage, one of the café venues, to see how the service can support children and young people, and families in Hertfordshire.
There will be exciting activities on the day, as well as refreshments, gift bags and a raffle!😊